Monday, March 26, 2012

56 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty Six

Eric was not alarmed so I too remained relatively calm, taking my cues from him and also feeling our blood bond.

"These are some of the members of the Liberation. They are eager to know how you view this upcoming vote." Augustus was speaking to Eric now.

"I welcome it," Eric said. "It will put an end to the endless discussion. First we must hear what Tesla has to tell us."

"I couldn't agree more," Augustus said. "A bunch of old women, our delegates, moving slower than Crassus. We need to finalize our plans and make our move."

Gran would have had his hide at that "old woman" remark. I pictured her bustling around the kitchen making an elaborate breakfast of grits, sausages, bacon, eggs, fruit salad, biscuits, toast, jam, coffee and fresh hand squeezed orange juice. All made while talking on the phone, setting the table and tidying up after herself so there wouldn't be a pile of washing up later. I'd like to see Augustus try to manage those tasks.

"I am sure much will be decided before the week is out," Eric said diplomatically.

"Then what will your vote be?" Augustus asked him directly.

I had been taught it wasn't polite to ask a person who they voted for or what their religion was. Obviously Augustus didn't have a Gran in his early life to teach him what's what.

"I have not heard the results of the study. Tesla will give us our odds of succeeding," Eric stated.

"Do you sssshare?" one of the glowing eyed vampires hissed towards Eric while bending sinuously towards me. "I have not tasssted fairy in sssso long ..."

"No, I do not. She is Mine," Eric stated bluntly, moving to stand between the hungry vamp and me.

"What a ssshame," another glowing eyed vampire said. "To keep all that jussst for one ...."

"Enough!" Augustus barked at him.

"This woman is a distraction," he said to Eric imperiously. "Send her away."

"No," Eric said with finality, setting his jaw. Like Benjamin Disraeli he didn't apologize and he didn't explain.

"You refuse me?" Augustus said astonished, drawing himself up to his full five foot nothing.

"I refuse to send my wife away. She is one blood with me," Eric stated.

"Oh you don't still believe all that silly one blood nonsense. No one does anymore," he said dismissively.

Taking their cue from their Maker, the circle of glowing eyed vamps moved a little closer towards me, some of them hissing slightly in anticipation of a tasty treat.

"I do," a female voice said behind the threatening circle.

As if invisible strings attached to the back of their waists were pulling them they glided backwards, bent bowing forward in an odd "U" shape as if they had no spines. Gosh, they were all so creepy.

Gorgeous Anna Hita, splendid in an ankle length jeweled lavender sheath dress stepped into the enlarged circle. Her many golden bracelets clinked merrily as she raised her white rounded arm.

She placed her soft hand on my cheek. "What has kept you child? I have been waiting."

"Mister Augustus here seemed to want to keep us palavering to influence our vote," I said like a tattle tale, moving close to Anna Hita.

"I only wished to discuss the merits of Vampire Liberation with Eric," Augustus said with dignity. "You were always free to leave," he sneered at me as if I were less than nothing.

"Not so," I contradicted in a singsong voice, "Remember how whats-her-name got all het up when I went to leave." I jerked a thumb at Cassiopeia.

She stiffened and her eyes flashed red. At least she was intelligent enough to know when she'd been diss'ed.

"That was because you walked away while one of your betters was still speaking to you," he sniped with barely contained anger. He didn't want to look bad in front of Anna Hita.

"Are you done speaking with my grandchild now?" Anna Hita asked him ultra-politely, the slightest hint of menace underlying her words.

"Yes, of course, we only meant to .."

"Come Sookie, we will talk in your room," Anna Hita said to me, cutting Augustus off.

"Can I have a word with Eric before we go?" I asked her, panic rising like carbonation fizz in my veins.

This was really going to happen, my separation from my Maker. I suddenly felt dizzy, like I was falling endlessly through space.

"Certainly my child, whatever you want," Anna Hita said, affection oozing from her voice.

She wanted to make darn sure that everyone knew I was her beloved relative. She was the right one to have in your corner, that was for sure.

With our heads held high Eric and I went to find someplace we could talk in private.

Anna Hita remained where she was, looking narrowly at Augustus like he was a very bad boy, making sure he and gang of creepoids didn't follow us.
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more to come ...... (Greetings fanpires, hope all is well in your world. I am very excited at where this story seems to be headed and even more excited to have you along. Hug your necks! See you on Saturday. )

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55 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty Five

"That's real good news, Trinity," I said with as much enthusiasm as I could muster. I gave her a brief hug, a leftover from our not-so-long-ago human girlie days.

Eric nodded in a congratulatory way, a very slight smile curving his lips.

We all remained standing, which was good. It might mean the Queen had places to go and only had a short time to share her news. She snapped her fingers and her lady-in-waiting took a photo out of a manilla envelope she was carrying and handed it to the Queen. Apparently the Queen had done this so often the lady knew exactly what she wanted when the Queen snapped her fingers.

Trinity handed me the photo. It showed a mottled grey field with some whitish spots and a vaguely oval denser area. I knew what this was, it was a sonogram of a pregnancy. I had seen sonograms of my triplets and would see one of Charlaine's baby as soon as they took one. It was a peek at the miracle of life. It made me tear up.

"Oh Trinity, isn't this a wonderful baby! Congratulations!" I said with genuine feeling.

I figured she had used a surrogate but still ... this would be her own little baby, her heart's desire. I knew what that meant.

"Of course I'm not carrying the baby but my sister's daughter donated the egg and Felipe has male relatives all over Spain so he or she is from our genetic stock," she blurted out in a rush.

"How fantastic!" I enthused, part of my attention being diverted by the fact that I was growing hungrier by the minute.

"The timing couldn't be be better now that Daynight is almost perfected. I'll be able to be up with the baby during the day and sleep at night when the baby sleeps," she went on.

Then she began to describe the nursery she was planning in detail.

If she thought babies slept at night she was in for a surprise. I didn't mention this because I didn't want to rain on her picnic. Having a new born was many wonderful things but being restful wasn't one of them.

What did she mean, Daynight was almost perfected? I hadn't heard a word about this. I thought Eric's and my sabotage had set back the schedule by at least a year.

"We are overjoyed at your good fortune," Eric replied when the Queen stopped to draw breath, "But my Child .." he indicated me .. "must eat immediately."

"Oh my gosh, so sorry!" Trinity said, heading for the door. "I should have noticed. Instead I was just going on and on about myself ...."

The lady-in-waiting scrambled to get to the exit before the Queen so she could open the door. Apparently queens were not supposed to touch doors.

"Understandable when you have such important and fortunate news," Eric said with a low bow.

"We'll have to get together again," Trinity said, hugging me very warmly, "You can teach me so much about taking care of a baby. No one at the palace seems to know anything about babies."

That didn't come as a surprise, she lived in a fortified enclave with about five hundred vampires. I thought of Butterfly McQueen in "Gone With the Wind" saying "I don't know nuthin' 'bout birthin no babies."

Fortunately Queen Trinity wasn't asking me to deliver the baby, just give her advice. I wondered if Mary Poppins was still working as a Nanny. Then I remembered that my Char was expecting too. I wanted her to have first dibs on Mary if she wanted a Nanny. I would just keep my mouth shut about the magical Nanny.

Eric and I left the penthouse and went immediately to the Pantry. A long line of men and women sat along the wall in what must be a giant conference room. Each person wore a large number pinned to their shirt, similar to what runners in a marathon would wear.

I had a brief glimpse into what life might be like for humans if the vampires took over. They would cease to be people after a while and just be herds of food. Maybe some vampires thought of them that way now. I shuddered to think of it.

"Who do you like?" Eric asked.

I looked them over. Number 55 looked good so I ordered him with a side of number 273. This would eliminate them from the Pantry for a month, a strict rule to prevent a vampire over feeding from favorite humans. I knew the conferences never lasted that long so this was their big chance to have a meaningful moment with a real vampire.

We took the people to a private feeding room. I did my very best to make this a pleasant experience for them, glamouring them so they felt only pleasure, healing them immediately and leaving them with beautiful memories.

Eric tipped them each handsomely too. A pleasant memory was one thing whereas a thousand bucks was something you could take to the bank.

Once I was pink and full I allowed Eric to drink a little from me. We were both whispering lovey dovey stuff to each other, laughing quietly and kissing when Augustus and a woman with an elaborate upswept hairdo of cascading taffy colored curls opened the door to our supposedly private feeding room and sauntered over to us.

"There you are," Augustus said brightly as if he had been searching high and low for us.

"You will wait outside," Eric said, standing immediately.

Augustus held up his little hands theatrically as if to ward Eric off. "Calm down, I only wanted to introduce your adorable Suckie to my consort ..."

"Outside," Eric said, his voice taking on a low menacing tone. "Now."

"Very well," Augustus said in a tone of mocking resignation. "If we must mill around outside your door then we must."

"Come Cassiopeia," he said with exaggerated weariness to the woman, "We must stand around in the hallway like dray horses waiting for Mr. Northman's erection to subside."

Cassiopeia just couldn't tear her eyes away from Eric's private area after that and Augustus had to lead her out of the little room. What was wrong with her? Sheesh!

They left but I could hear them right outside the door because Cassiopea was giggling in a very un-vampirelike way. I was furious but Eric was twice as furious.

I gave him a questioning look. He shook his head "no", his lips a grim set line. He was saying that we didn't want to start any big ruckus with Augustus here at the conference. That meant the little man was powerful and could cause problems for us if he was riled up. His rudeness wasn't worth the hassle. At least not at this time.

Gran used to say that someone had the patience of a saint. Eric was beyond the saint stage, he had the patience of a granite cliff. He would wait until the time was right then smite Augustus and all his clan, cutting them down in a hail of destruction like dragon fire. I saw their heads flying off their shoulders, their brains dashed out against rocks. I saw ..

I saw things the way Eric saw them! I was feeling his rage through our blood bond. Eric was nearing the red haze stage. I moved to calm him down.

"I need to get back to my room," I told him, meaning my room in Klosters where Jure and the Bishops were waiting for me.

Eric, seeing the wisdom of this, cycled down and nodded. "Yes, I will see you to your room right away," he said sounding like his usual self.

Disaster averted, I thought. We opened the door and almost walked into Augustus and Cassiopea they were standing so close by.

"Ah there she is, the light of Eric's life," Augustus extolled. "Let me introduce you to my wonderful friend Cassiopeia. She has heard so much about you."

Cassiopeia giggled again, her eyes dropping to Eric's groin. Then she looked back up and tried to make meaningful eye contact with him. In front of me. She was either having fun playing with fire or else she had a fang loose. Eric's gaze slid away from her to a point past her shoulder. He looked bored.

I glared at her, not nodding. What did these nutty people want from us?

"So happy to make your acquaintance," she purred in a low voice. "It is so seldom one gets to meet a human from the lowest class raised up to be Vampire. I hope the change suits you?"

"It suits me just fine," I snapped. I was not going to rise to the bait and get into it with her. She looked like she was a thousand years older than me.

She leaned forward and sniffed. "Is that fairy I smell? Don't tell me you have fairy blood, that's too too delicious to be true!" Her fangs were sliding out.

I didn't reply.

"Well, is it true?" she asked again.

"You said not to tell you if I have fairy blood," I said flatly. "I need to go. Bye y'all."

I started to walk away. Instantly Cassiopeia was in front of me looking none too happy.

"You dare to walk away while I am talking to you?" she said quietly, her tone full of threat.

"I thought you were done," I said.

I realized I needed to tone this confrontation down a few notches. I gave her my big fake smile. "Sorry, it's just that I have a prior engagement and I'm already late."

Augustus stood by Cassiopeia's side, she was a foot taller than him. I always wondered how those relationships worked out when the woman was substantially taller than the man. It was not the societal norm, maybe that just added a little extra spiciness to the mix. Or maybe Augustus wasn't enough for her so she was flirting with my husband.

"You have insulted a high ranking vampire," he informed me sternly. "I have a mind to file a grievance against you."

"Oh please don't do that, kind sir," I said in melodramatic pleading tones, recalling the actress who played Little Eva in "Uncle Tom's Cabin", a play the high school had given when I was in second grade. High school production or not, it had made me cry.

"It is only my newness and ignorance that has caused me to behave badly," I added when Augustus didn't respond.

"Master, can you forgive me for reflecting badly on your training?" I asked Eric, bowing my head to him.

I did not want to get Eric in hot water for failing to control his Child. I had seen Pam get down on one knee but that was too old school for me. I wanted to fit in as a new vampire and not show I was free to act as I wanted.

"We will discuss this in your room," Eric said, gently drawing me to his side.

"Is there anything more you wish to say?" Eric asked Cassiopeia, looking over her head. His face was like marble, not polite, not rude, not anything. How did he manage to do that?

"Perhaps ...." she looked him up and down with obvious lust, "Perhaps you and I can talk when your little fairy girl is no longer around."

Eric looked at her without moving. Then he looked at Augustus. "Have you finished?"

"No, my dear boy, no. I have only begun. I have many more people I wish to introduce to Suckie," he said.

He sent out some kind of glamour, I could feel it buzzing all over the surface of my skin like a thousand bees. Sickly skinny vampires suddenly appeared all around us, their eyes glowing like orange candle flames. They were all looking at me.

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more to come ..... (Another weekend! Where does the time go? Hope you will get a chance to relax and I appreciate the time you spend here with me. A rose of gratitude to each of you!)

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Thursday, March 22, 2012

54 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty Four

As we made our way to the King's suite I surreptitiously looked over all the vampires of stature and note around me. Eric had seen this assemblage many times but this was my first rodeo.

Like a human convention the beautifully groomed vampires, a few with their humans, were arriving with their luggage, getting checked in at the main desk and being escorted to their suites.

Unlike a human convention the crowd was virtually silent and there was no milling around. The smattering of human companions fit in with the vampire decorum either by choice or because they were under vampire control.

There were almost as many black suited vampire security guards as conventioneers. They even had those little collar mike thingies. A few wore dark sunglasses to complete the whole "men in black" image. Their expressions were surly brick walls of suspicion as they scanned the lobby. Did they practice in that hard face a mirror?

The humans that accompanied this illustrious crowd of decision makers would not be enough to sustain them. The catered humans would be kept in the Pantry, a humorous name for the feeding area.

If those human donors had seen this entire assemblage of ancient vampires they might have fainted with terror, so powerful and alien would they have seemed. Seeing one vampire at a time would be all right, a one on one interaction usually turned out well for the donor.

Greetings were limited to polite nods. No squeals of joy at seeing someone you hadn't seen in ages, no handshakes, no small talk among friends. That was one of the things I liked best about vampires, their silence and stillness. As a human telepath I had found it peaceful. As a vampire I found it equally peaceful.

My brain was still in the habit of thinking a thousand thoughts at once. I hoped that my awareness would eventually become the way Adele described the minds of vampires. She was the only one in our family that could dip into a vampire's mind.

She said their thoughts were few and far between, focused on the task at hand and then still again, like a pebble thrown in a calm pool of water, making ripples, then an undisturbed surface returned to reflect the sky. I wondered if some of the zen literature had been written by vampires, it sounded so much like the minds of the older vampires.

Most of the delegates were dressed in clothing of this time period but a few had arrived in tartans, animal skins, Victorian floor length gowns, zoot suits and the like. Some vamps preferred to wear the clothing of their human lives. Vampires did not call attention to themselves when in human company but when among their own kind they could let their capes down.

Maybe one day I would show up here barefoot, hair in a swinging pony tail, wearing my tattered Daisy Dukes and checkered blouse tied up to show my midriff. I smiled an inner smile at this thought. Green Acres meets Nosferatu.

The King's suite was on the top floor, one of several penthouses, the lofty location showing his status as a high ranking official of the convention. Again I wondered if this indicated he was really in favor of Vampire Liberation.

King Felipe de Castro could smile and smile, assure you all was well, then send a henchman to stake you in your sleep. Trickery, ruthlessness and deception had gotten him all his power. I imagined it was how he kept it too.

With Daynight still not perfected he might appear to keep his opinions on hold but secretly he could be waiting for the day vampires would rise up and take over. I really really hoped that wasn't the case.

Eric didn't even need to knock on the King's door before it was opened by Sarno Stone, the King's secretary. Sarno had the facial expressions, body language and mannerisms of a young up and coming human executive. This performance made him valuable in interfacing with humans.

Beneath the energetic and politically correct human behavior he was 100% vampire. His human act had never fooled me, even when I was still human. In other words, he was not one I would let my guard down around.

"Come in, come in," he said heartily, smiling.

He put his beautifully manicured hand up as if to clap Eric on the back but of course this gesture never actually resulted in him touching Eric. Vampires didn't touch, it was considered demeaning to carry around another vampire's scent. That didn't hold for Eric and me of course, we touched all the time and our scents were completely intermingled, letting all the others know we were a bonded pair.

I noticed the surveillance video screen by the door, meaning a camera had been monitoring who came down the hall towards the King's rooms. I hadn't noticed the tiny lens but then I wasn't supposed to. I didn't care. I hoped Eric's room had a camera too. The more precautions the better.

"The Queen will be right with you," Sarno said with a toothpaste ad smile, bowing a little as he left the room.

Eric and I stood, still and silent, waiting. I heard the heating system kick in, a car start in the parking lot, a spider crawl across the window screen.

My tummy gave a little rumble, a warning that my appetite was starting to grow. Eric heard it, nodded a tiny nod at me and looked towards the door. He was telling me, without words, that he was aware of my hunger and we would get the heck out of here as soon as vampirely possible.

We had been married for so long and shared such a deep bond that we could have whole conversations with gestures and facial expressions without ever muttering a word.

Then we heard the Queen approaching, her laughter bringing a sense of relief that she seemed to be in a good mood. Unless this was loony laughter, a distinct possibility.

A business suited lady-in-waiting opened the door and the Queen swept in. Gone were the medieval clothes, the fake pregnant bellies and the mood of gloom that had descended on her and her entourage.

She was radiant with happiness, pink from feeding, svelte and smart looking in a designer little black dress that left one white beautifully sculpted shoulder bare. She looked every bit the high fashion model she had been in her human life.

"Sookie! Eric! I just had to tell you, I have such good news! I'm going to have a baby!" She was grinning from jeweled ear to jeweled ear. Her heart shaped face was made for dangling diamond earrings.

Oh brother, I thought, pasting a smile on my face, here we go again.

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more to come ..... (Wonderful Wednesday everyone! Thank you for your continued interest and kind words, they are always appreciated. See you Saturday for the next installment, hope you are doing well. )

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

53 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty Three


The growing line of black limos passed through scenic farmland, past the nearby city of Klosters where I would be staying and entered the charming town of Davos like a swarm of sleek black wasps descending on a Sunday church picnic. Every car I saw contained a vampire of power and note. Many also contained humans either as drivers or companions.

I knew that not all powerful vampires participated in the Vampire Alliance conferences. Jure didn't participate, neither did Anna Hita. I thought they might be hoping that if they ignored it long enough it would just peter out.

I was hoping the notion would die a faster death than that. It was possible this conference might put an end to vampire takeover plans for once and for all. Tesla carried a lot of weight in the vampire community. His grim prognosis for the Day of the Dead could tip the scales in favor of canning the idea.

Since the population of Davos was only around eleven thousand people, buses of donors had been brought in by the conference caterers. Davos was the highest city in Europe so the hungry vampires would need to use restraint to keep the donors healthy in the rarefied atmosphere. Eric had assured me Jure would see I was well fed in Kloster. I believed him. You didn't want to know me when I wasn't well fed.

The Swiss Alps made a beautiful backdrop to the city. It had a lovely river to the west, the Landwasser, as Eric explained. We passed a large ice skating rink filled with happy skaters under night lights. I thought I might like to try gliding around on ice skates, a notion that had never crossed my little old Louisiana mind before.

Eric had no problem with the other vamps hearing him give me a travelogue. In fact, it would probably be so boring to them they would quickly tune out, hoping to hear something vital that would give them a strategic advantage in the negotiations to come. I was fascinated to hear what Eric had to say so it worked out well for both of us.

"Davos is located between the Plessur and Albula Range of the Alps," Eric told me knowledgeably. "You will be able to get here easily from your hotel."

He was trying to reassure me about our upcoming separation. As the time grew near I found myself actually calming down, focusing on the tasks at hand - getting to see the Queen and getting safely out of Davos again before any other vampire took an unhealthy interest in me.

I was pleased to see this in myself. This was the old me I knew from my human days, the one that got tough when the going got rocky. Mentally I patted myself on the back.

Then we were at the conference center and the self congratulations stopped. I would need to act meek and submissive to Eric, give the Queen whatever crazy thing she wanted from me now, hide my fairyness and my new vampire powers from all the vampires and somehow make it back safely to Jure and food before I started to get a red haze going. A tall order for a newbie vamp.

We checked in at the desk. Security was tight, it took several long minutes before our invitations passed inspection and we were issued conference badges. I noticed they had the black and purple color scheme of our King and I worried the King might be foursquare behind the Day of the Dead.

As soon as our badges were hung around our necks we turned to go find the suite for the King and Queen of Louisiana. Before I could take a step I almost ran into a short man with wavy iron gray hair worn in a weird bowl haircut. I was a good four or five inches taller than he was, even in my sensible low heeled brown pumps.

His hair might have been styled like Moe of the Three Stooges but there the resemblance ended. His face was craggy and deeply lined, his pewter gray eyes were smart and cynical, his brows straight and heavy. Under a large Roman nose was a small cupid's bow mouth and rounded chin, the kind of chin I associated with stubborn people.

"You must be our handsome Viking's latest conquest," he said to me, managing to leer at me and look contemptuous at the same time.

He talked through his nose giving his words a snide whining tone. I immediately disliked this little man. He spoke as if I was still a human!

I wanted to snap at him that I was Eric's wife, his VAMPIRE wife but I knew to hold my tongue. I was supposed to submit to my Maker in all things so I needed to let Eric handle this. I looked up at Eric waiting for his reply.

"This is my wife, Mrs. Stackhouse. Sookie, this is Augustus Maximus, the leader of the Vampire Alliance movement," Eric said tonelessly. I knew from his introduction that this must be the number one proponent for the vampire take over. This was our enemy.

I thought Augustus might be a title, not a name. Did that make him a king or emperor? I nodded at him without expression. He did not deign to nod back at me, just continued to stare at me in an openly rude way. Maybe the fact that I was taller than him made him mad at me. He seemed mad at the world, a world made up of lots of folks taller than he was. A little man with big plans, plans I hoped to derail.

"Will Mrs. Stuckus be attending the conference too?" he asked Eric, looking way up to where Eric's handsome face was.

"No," Eric replied flatly. "If you will now excuse us my King has summoned us."

Eric made a small move as if to go.

"And are you on the side of the Liberation?" Augustus asked me directly, stepping right in front of me blocking my way. Didn't he know about personal space?

I didn't think Eric could answer this question for me. After all, I was a new Vampire, not an imbecile. I decided to waffle.

"Ah'm sure ah don't know ...." I began weakly with a pronounced "Gone With The Wind" Southern accent, sounding ditzy and confused. I was playing the "dumb blond" card.

"Watch out," he warned in a fake jovial manner, "People get killed in the middle of the road." He smiled showing small uneven teeth. They didn't have orthodontists back in his day. His smile never made it to his cold appraising eyes.

I half expected Eric to confront Augustus about the implied threat in what he said but Eric didn't bat an eye. He just took me by the arm and ushered me around the small intense man. I noticed that several vampires and their human companions were discreetly watching this interaction.

I recognized Augustus for what he was - pure trouble.

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more to come ....... (Greetings lovely Fanpires! Hope you have a nice day planned for yourself. Your loyalty is a gift beyond price. Wishing you peace of mind and a happy heart! See you on Wednesday as usual. ((((((XXXX)))))

Monday, March 12, 2012

52 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty Two

Aside from worrying the rickety water tower might collapse under us we had a great time "rehearsing" my obedient role. Then we needed to fly to the ground, get back to the guest house and make arrangements for the Bishops and Jure to meet us in Switzerland.

Linda, who was currently in Vienna with Jure, was going to come here to New Zealand to spend a few days with Charlaine, something she was excited to do. Our planes would probably cross as she came to where we were and we went to Switzerland.

I wondered how her sister's pregnancy would affect her. Would it increase her longing to have a child of her own? Would it throw cold water on her interest in Jure? I thought not, though it might give her pause to consider her options more carefully.

Due to the safe room demands of the Vampire Alliance conference, Eric found it impossible to find a safe room for me and Jure in Davos. He finally found one in the nearby town of Klosters, a favorite of those visiting the local ski resorts.

I had zero interest in skiing in either Davos or Klosters. I was concerned that I would be too far away from Eric while he attended the conference but beggars couldn't be choosers. Vampires didn't like last minute planning for this very reason.

There was no way Eric was going to let me use his room in the Hotel Davos where hundreds of high powered vampire rulers might see me or worse, smell the fairy in me. It would be like bringing catnip to a cat convention. I begged him to let me stay with him but Eric wouldn't budge.

It was decided and I gave in. Jure, the Bishop brothers and I would be staying in the Hotel Steinbock. The basement had been modified for vampire occupancy by a company Eric owned part interest in, he could vouch for its safety. It would be better than a lava cave under Easter Island anyway. I hoped Jure could keep me from killing anyone.

He was stronger than Eric but would he fully realize just how important it was for me to avoid killing anyone? I hoped I could talk to him before we went hunting.

If the hunger hit I would not be in control and would need to depend on Jure to restrain me. I decided to choke down however many bottles of True Blood it would take to keep me under control. Imagine drinking a gallon of Windex to get an idea of what that would be like for me.

After fretting and fussing at Eric some more I finally put all worries aside and concentrated on the little time I had left with Char and Darren.

Linda would go with Charlaine to her next doctor's appointment. I couldn't have gone even if I was here because it was during the day. This conference was so important. It might be the turning point where the idea of Vampire Liberation, meaning human subjugation, would finally be staked and see a final death.

Everything went smoothly until Eric and I were on our Anubis flight to Zurich. From there we would take a limo to Klosters and get me safely tucked away in my room where Jure and the Bishops would be waiting, then Eric would leave me and go to Davos. The key words in that sentence were "then Eric would leave me". I felt like my heart was being ripped out every time I thought of it.

At least that was the plan starting out but mid-flight Eric got a phone call from the King. Queen Trinity wanted me to visit her in her royal suite before the start of the conference. The suite was, of course, in Davos. I was secretly pleased I would get to spend a little more time with my Maker. Eric mumbled a few bad words in Viking or some such language.

We scrambled to let Jure and the Bishops know the change in plan. I wanted to visit with the nutty Queen like I wanted to greet the sun. Being a vampire didn't leave me with any good excuses. No headache, flu or woman troubles to offer as a reason for not coming.

Royalty didn't stand for sheer cussedness, which was how I was feeling about the whole thing. On the dark side at least I would get to spend a little more time close to Eric. Every second I had with him seemed so precious now that we were to be parted. It felt all very Romeo and Juliet to me.

Since the flight was more than 14 hours we went to our travel containers during the flight and rose in the plane. It was on the ground in Zurich, locked in an Anubis hanger. These amenities would have cost a king's ransom if we had to pay for them out of our pocket. Fortunately a mistake made by the airline, accidentally sending Eric's container to Cleveland, resulted in us being given a golden key, unlimited access to Anubis services for life. In return we never made the mistake known to other vampires.

After changing into conservative dressy business clothes we looked for our car and driver, a Cadillac driven by non-vampire with a pleasant gap toothed grin. He got our luggage from the plane and loaded it in the trunk of his shiny car looking just as chipper as could be. From his thoughts I could see he was expecting a huge reward. Vampires had a good reputation as tippers. He saw fangs and heard "ka-ching".

In the limo I nagged Eric relentlessly about coming to see me as soon as possible. I could hear myself babbling but I just couldn't stop going over and over each detail of how I would handle it and when he would be free to join me in Klosters.

Finally he said, "Stop talking."

"What?" I gaped, not sure I had heard him correctly. Eric never tried to shut me up.

He didn't answer, he just stared straight ahead. I felt the tingle of his power along my right side, the side closest to him. I looked around and saw there were other fancy limos on the road around us. They must be carrying vampires to the conference too.

Vampires with excellent supernatural hearing.

I tuned into my environment using both telepathy and my enhanced hearing and heard numerous languages being spoken in phone and personal conversations. The two abilities, telepathy and vampire super powers, meshed seamlessly. It was impossible for me to tell where one ended and the other began.

It was like having my bothersome telepathy finally fitted into who I was. Again I thought of Linda, how this would benefit her. Should I share this information with her, giving her one more reason to Turn? I couldn't decide.

I could smell the vampires in every direction too, kind of like being downwind from an ancient pine forest. I thought I could even sense the deep thrumming vibrations being emitted by some of the older vamps.

We were surrounded by the very vampires Eric was trying to keep me hidden from. We looked at each other. I made a zipping motion across my mouth, pretended to turn a lock with an invisible key and then tossed the invisible key away.

Eric frowned, took a second to get what I was doing, then he laughed silently. He put his big arm around me and cuddled me to him. I was completely happy at that moment.

I saw that it was one thing to be among humans but quite another to be among the political movers and shakers in the vampire world. From now on I would need to be on guard, weighing every action and reaction.

From now on I would need to be completely Vampire.

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more to come ...... (Wonderful Wednesday Were-Readers! I greatly appreciate your visit and send every good with back to you with interest. Peace and wellness to you. See you Saturday....)

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51 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty One

"Jure?"

I couldn't believe Eric was saying this! Talk about having the fox watch the hen house!

"Yes. We have come to a meeting of minds. He is very old and very strong, much stronger and faster than the Bishop brothers. He has had experience raising a Child. If he marries Linda he will be part of our family, our nest. He would not hurt you and he can take you to hunt while controlling you. That is my condition, do you accept it?"

I was between an Easter Island lava cave and a hard place. I had to accept. Eric would not put me in the hands of a bad person. Unless Jure had him completely bamboozled into trusting him. Eric was pretty hard to fool. They must have had some intense heart to heart talk there in Jure's spooky castle.

I remembered Eric's answer when I had asked him what he and Jure had spoken about. "Nothing of consequence" my foot!

These guys must have spilled their guts to each other while Linda and I were upstairs! Eric was probably "protecting" me from worrying about our daughter while I was still in my vampire infancy.

Men, who can understand them?

"Yes, if you're sure he won't make a grab for me," I said cautiously.

"I am sure. He has moved on."

I felt a tiny twinge of sadness at this and a big surge of happiness. Having Jure mooning over me from a distance was sort of flattering in a dangerous way but he was with Linda now. I wanted him to leave me be and make a life for himself, though I wasn't sure how I felt about him taking off after Linda.

I could let bygones be bygones if Jure didn't do anything wrong. Mostly I was glad I could stay with Eric. He was everything to me.

"That's fine then. I'll do everything you say," I told him. Anything to avoid being separated.

"You will need to appear as if I have a Maker's control over you, even in front of Jure. Can you act that way consistently? No one can know you are .... different than the average Child. It would cause speculation, something I wish to avoid."

I suddenly saw with clarity that my abilities would make me a valuable asset to any vampire that could harness them. I would willingly do what Eric wanted because I loved him and trusted him. Mostly he just let me do my own thing.

I would be unwilling to do the bidding of another vampire but I could be coerced with threats to our girls or our grand child to do what an unscrupulous vampire bent on destruction would order. There were more than a few of those.

Of course taking a Vampire child from a Maker must be a very serious offense in vampire culture. Just as serious as kidnapping was in human culture. That didn't mean if couldn't happen.

"I absolutely get what you're saying to me. I will be every bit the obedient Child, I promise. I swear it." I put my hand over my heart.

"I do not know if this will work. We better rehearse," he said thoughtfully.

"Rehearse?"

"Yes. I will tell you what to do and you will obediently do it," he said.

"Ooookaaay," I replied slowly, wondering what he was getting to.

"Take your top off," he ordered sternly. "Including your under thing."

Oh, now I got it. He was going to play this Master card for all it was worth.

"Yes Master. Like this Master?"

"Yes, just like that."

I liked Eric in "Master" mode a whole great big bunch.

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more to come .... (A beautiful day to you! Hope your problems melt away like morning mist. Thank you for stopping by, I am always overjoyed to see you. I'll be sending you my good thoughts.)

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

50 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Fifty

Later that night Eric answered my question about whether I should be worried about the conference in Switzerland.

This was after I had fed on several members of a gang that was selling hard drugs to high school kids. I was experimenting on the different ways I could use my power to deter the various brands of miscreants from miscreanting. It was fun to get creative and see what worked best.

First I instilled the idea that legal gainful employment was the way to go. Since few of these guys had bothered to finish school that might be a tough order to fulfill. Who's going to hire a man with a criminal record as long as your arm, tattoos all over their necks, faces, hands and arms, no education and the inability to articulate a thought in polite society? Still, I did what I could.

The next time they tried to make a drug deal their arms would cease to work and they would be unable to speak. I had no idea how long the effect would last but if it went on too long it would make personal hygiene a nightmare.

Oh well, like they say, just say no.

"You do not need to be worried about the conference. I am having second thoughts about bringing you," Eric reassured me.

We were sitting on the tippy top of an unused water tower watching the stars swirl around the sky. It was wonderful being swept up in Eric's arms and flown to a high place to watch the world go by.

"Could we just blow the whole conference off?" I asked, looking at him. I was concerned despite what Eric had just said. He almost never had second thoughts.

His eyes glowed blue in that way vampires had. "I must attend. I was thinking of putting you someplace safe while I am there."

I felt such a wrenching pain in my heart at the thought of being separated from him it made me gasp. I grabbed his arm as if I could simply cling to him and prevent him from ever being apart from me, even for an instant.

"No ...no, you mustn't leave me! Not for a second, not ever!" I pleaded.

I was surprised at the raw desperation in my tone of voice. This wasn't like me, to be so very clinging. I felt like my heart would break if we were separated.

Eric wasn't put off by my words. He put his arms around me and spoke into my hair.

"I would not be leaving you, my dearest one, if I did not have to. All the most powerful vampires will be attending that conference. They all know of you. I want to keep you out of their sight and out of their minds, especially now that your powers have increased."

I pulled back to look at him. "You think they might still make a try for me, even after all this time?"

I found it impossible to believe that I was in the kind of constant danger Eric imagined. Wasn't he just over estimating my value because he loved me?

He laughed softly, his white teeth almost iridescent in the moonlight. "It has not been so much time, not to us old ones. We are very very patient and will wait by the mouse hole for as long as it takes."

"Yeah, but I'm not a mouse. Not any more. I am Vampire," I said with as much power as I could muster. He needed to believe I could take care of myself otherwise he might leave me to attend the conference by himself.

That thought, of him not being there when I rose, made a jagged ball in my throat and I started sobbing. So much for sounding all powerful and strong. What was happening to me? I could not have PMS, so what was it?

"What the hell is wrong with me?" I simultaneously snarled and sobbed , wiping my pink tears away savagely with the back of my hand. I was angry at myself for being such a clinging vine and for acting in the very way that would make Eric see me as too weak to attend the conference with him.

Eric took my hand and kissed the tears off of it, then ever so gently wiped my eyes with the hem of his tee shirt.

"My precious wife, you are a vampire Child. I am your Maker. Our bond, our relationship, has intensified. You feel the uncompromising need all young ones feel for their parent, their protector. I feel the uncompromising need to keep you safe, even if it distresses you. How shall we solve this?"

He spoke with a tenderness and concern that calmed my rising panic. I needed to be with him. Period.

I understood that he wanted to keep me safe, but it was going to have to be with me by his side in Switzerland. Poor Eric, just when he thought he had me on the other side of human vulnerability I was back in some kind of peril again, at least to his way of thinking.

"What did you have in mind?" I asked, getting my emotions under control. I noticed that I had not let go of his arm but my grip loosened a bit.

"I have a safe place you can go and hide. It would not be comfortable but it would do for the few days I was at the conference," he said.

"Where?" I asked. I really didn't care where because there was no way I was going but I owed it to him to hear him out.

"Under Easter Island. There is a maze of volcanic caves under the island that no one visits. I would stock it with True Blood ."

I made a face like a little kid tasting a Brussels sprout. "Oh yuck, doesn't anyone live there?" I asked.

He laughed, "It would be too dangerous to have you feeding off the population of the island unsupervised. There is a chance you would kill an innocent human and feel bad about it."

"So you're saying you would seal me in some horrible cave? I would stay there alone, by myself, drinking bottled battery acid in the dark, night after miserable night, waiting for you?" I asked to make sure I had the plan straight.

He looked up towards the sky for a while, perhaps asking one of his Nordic gods to give him strength.

"No .......... I see that will not work. I will bring you with me to the conference on one condition," he said, looking me square in the eye to show he meant business.

"Anything," I said, my heart leaping with joy at his decision.

"The condition is that you allow Jure to be one of your body guards," Eric said.

Well shut my mouth!

And I mean that literally, because my jaw dropped open at his words.

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more to come ...... (Greetings Fanpires! Your visit is like a big bunch of spring flowers! Thank you for stopping by. I send you thoughts of health and peace until Saturday.)


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49 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Forty Nine

Before Eric could answer my question Charlaine peeked out and asked, "Is the coast clear?"

She had a happy amused expression on her sweet face so she obviously believed the visit of a liveried messenger was a hoot, just more of the Kings' pompous shenanigans, something she was used to. The girls had been raised around vampires, to them it was normal to have both a country with a president and a vampire King.

"Yes, he's gone. It was only an invitation to some boring conference in Switzerland," I told her reassuringly.

"It means we will need to leave tomorrow," Eric added. His bluntness was evidence of some tension inside him.

"Can't you just say no?" Charlaine asked.

We went inside and followed her back to the kitchen while I considered how to answer her. She was not aware of the absolute power the King wielded over the vampires in his territory, how an invitation was really a do-or-die command. It might worry her to realize that we were basically vampire citizens, not American citizens. Someday that would change, but for now it was how things were. And in Vampire Land the King or Queen was a ruthless dictator.

"It would be in our best interest to attend. Policies are being decided and your father wants a chance to vote on several issues that might impact the future," I told Charlaine, giving her some truth and some some fluff.

Then Darren joined us in the kitchen, munching on celery and grapes while Charlaine finished cooking and we discussed our unexpected departure, the possible move back to the States and Charlaine's next routine visit with her obstetrician. At the dinner table Eric and I politely sipped warmed True Blood while Char and Darren ate their healthy vegetable rich meals.

Darren told us a funny story about a request he received to make a life sized computer generated hologram of a famous actress for a wealthy Taiwanese businessman. The man was head over heels in love with her. Darren told us that the technology to produce such a large image was a year or two in the future but he saw there might be a real demand for it if he could hurry the research.

I wondered what the man would do with the image once he had it. You couldn't hug or interact with a hologram. I pictured him hugging the image, wrapping his arms around air. It seemed a little sad.

That comment about research triggered a thought in Char. "When are you going to have Daynight perfected?" she asked.

Naturally we hadn't told her about our decision to sabotage the research center to slow down the production of Daynight. Once vampires had the ability to day walk they might be one step closer to taking over control of the world.

I was hoping this impromptu conference might be a chance for Tesla to make a plea for reason and balance to the assembled vampires of power once he explained that all his computer generated feasibility studies had ended in disastrous outcomes. I wasn't sure some of the older rulers would give up their fanatical dreams of vampire power but they could be outvoted or, ultimately, eliminated.

"No way to know, it's two steps forward and one step back," I told her.

Darren signed, with a grin, "Sometimes it's one step forward and then it all blows up." He made a blowing up gesture with his expressive hands and we all laughed.

He had no idea how right he was. We had created an explosive fire in the lab to delay the progress of the tests. Now I was not so sure that had been a good idea. I wanted to be around during the day to see my grand baby while he was awake. What if the baby was born in the afternoon? The thought of waking to find out the baby was already here would be a disappointment to me.

Darren's comment about explosions reminded me of something I had read once, that on some level everyone knows everything but they just don't know they know it. Was Darren tapping into that hidden ability when he indicated that things blew up in research, or was it just a coincidence?

I wondered if Tesla's report, based on Anna Hita's travel to parallel dimensions, would be enough to end the whole Vampire Liberation thing once and for all, or would the Day of the Dead go right ahead, damn the consequences?

What kind of a world would my first grandchild grow up in?

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More to come ...... (Good weekend everyone! Thanks for stopping by, and for your comments when you have the chance. I have a "sixth sense" that you are there reading along even if I don't see a comment from you. I send you my very best wishes for positive things and peace of mind. See you Wednesday!)

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Friday, March 2, 2012

48 - Sookie Stackhouse and Eric Northman Look to the Future - Part Two

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Chapter Forty Eight

"Mom?" Charlaine was on the phone, calling me from the house.

"Justh a thecond," I told her, putting the phone down.

I had recently risen and was hungrily eating my first meal of the night, warmed donor blood. Eric was already dressed. He stood in the center of the room looking alert.

Since the guest house was a safe place for us Eric looking alert was a cause for concern. I quickly finished my meal and picked up the phone. My fangs went back in.

"Yes sweetheart?"

Then a thought hit me. Panic.

"You're not spotting or having pains are you?"

"No, no, nothing like that. There's a guy here at the front door that looks like he's dressed for a Ren fair. He's looking for Dad. Do you want to see him? He wouldn't leave a message," she said.

"Is he Vampire?" I asked. If he was he couldn't enter Char's house without an invitation, though he would certainly know she was on the phone with me.

"Yup. He's wearing a purple and black get up," she said. She added in a whisper, "He has on a big puffy purple velvet hat with an enormous black feather in it." She stifled a little giggle.

Oh Shinola! I recognized the description as one of the costumes the King of Louisiana made his messengers wear. I told Eric.

"We must see what the King wants," he said flatly.

He didn't sigh, he never did that, but he drew his broad shoulders back in a certain way he had when he was going to confront something he would rather skip.

"We'll take care of it, honey. It's just your Dad's boss sending a message. You and Darren stay in the house til we come get you," I said in the most reassuring tone possible. It wasn't good for pregnant women to suffer unduly from stress.

"OK, sure. Thanks Mom, glad it's nothing wrong," she said cheerfully.

I had showered before I went to ground. Now I jumped in my clothes with vampire warp speed, putting my good navy suit jacket over a high necked turquoise silk blouse to look more formal.

Eric wore tight battered jeans and a Hot Topic tee shirt that said, "Keep staring .... I might do a trick."

He had just recently discovered the Hot Topic store in the Shreveport mall and bought one of just about everything. It was good to see he was still young at heart.

We left our safe haven and walked around Char's house to the front where the messenger stood. He really did look silly in the ballooning purple velvet shorts and black tights, especially because he didn't have the legs for it. They were toothpick thin and knobby at the knees. The pointed shoes with the curled toes didn't help either, lending the whole outfit that jaunty elf look.

He asked, "Are you Mr. Northman and Mrs. Stackhouse?"

He had a nice French accent. I was tempted to answer "oui" but Eric spoke up first. I was practicing my French for our stop in Paris.

"We are." Eric waited with statue like patience for this whole farce to play itself out.

Hadn't the King ever heard of emails or the phone? Eric checked both his phone and his computer as soon as he woke. Obviously the King believed his power to be so great that mere gadgets were insufficient to carry the weight of his mighty words. A live tricked-out messenger was needed to convey the precious commands.

"Hear Ye, Hear Ye," the messenger intoned loudly, though we were standing right in front of him. As vampires we could have heard him if he whispered from a block away.

"King Felipe de Castro, Exulted Ruler of Nevada, Louisiana and Arkansas, hereby invites and requests you to meet him in Davos, Switzerland in two nights for the next meeting of the Vampire Alliance. Do you accept his invitation?"

The messenger handed Eric a rolled up document closed with two black and purple ribbons and an old fashioned wax seal impressed with the King's crest.

"Yes, we accept. I need to bring my Child with me, she can not be left on her own," Eric stated.

"I will tell the King. Good evening to you," he said. We all nodded politely.

One thing about sending a messenger, you couldn't say you never got the message. This guy would go right back and tell the King we were coming. We watched him drive away in the limo, though not one of the black and purple ones from the King's fleet back home. Probably too expensive to ship a royal limo all the way to New Zealand just to deliver a message. It was good to see the King drew the line somewhere when it came to spending, our fealty fees were paying for all this tomfoolery.

After the tail lights disappeared from sight I asked Eric, "Do I need to be worried about this?"

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more to come ..... (Hello and Wednesday greetings from Fangland! Hope the day finds you well and happy. Thank you so very much for stopping by, you always brighten my day!)

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