Previously: due to the unprompted nature of the forming of their first bond Eric and Sookie had an honest conversation about what they wanted from each other. Godric revealed to Eric and Pam he was part of a Guild set to protect Sookie and they would have to keep quiet about her Royal Stature in order to do so, including keeping it from Sookie.
“I know,” she said into the safety of his chest. “Just don’t say it to me. Not like that.”
Eric nodded and started washing her body tenderly as she held on to him. Eric wanted to understand the pain but he wouldn’t prod unless she was ready to share with him.
“You’re everything to me,” he whispered in her ear as she was wrapped into a fluffy white towel by him. “May I tell you that?”
She looked up at him seeing the sincerity in his eyes. An affirmative gesture was given as she rested her head back against him. “I could love you too,” she softly admitted to his wet chest.
With that confession he finally understood the ache she had spoken of.
“You know Sookie when I said you two should kiss to get past it,” Pam drawled with an exaggerated pause while scented the air dramatically. “This wasn’t what I meant.”
“That’s some apology Pamela,” Eric growled out as Sookie flushed with embarrassment over their obvious activities.
“It’s good to see you looking well again Pam,” Sookie spoke politely after she gave Eric an admonishing look muttering of his rudeness under her breath. Pam couldn’t hide her smile of amusement at the interchange between the two newfound lovers and her maker’s obvious doting on Sookie.
“I think I should do it more often,” Pam replied running her fingers through her thick and shiny mane, affording herself more protection than she was granted by Eric’s apparent ire. “There’s something about this virgin hair.” Eric simply continued to stare at his progeny testily striking out silently at her through the remnants of their shared bond.
Pam hung her head in submission instantly before moving onto her knees in front of an uncomfortable looking Sookie. “Master, Mistress,” Pam spoke with reverence. “Please accept my apologies. I failed to ascertain the situation and caused events to transpire that should have been made by choice and not from necessity. I will accept my punishment willingly.”
“Sookie,” Eric probed with a small nudge as she remained mute with Pam’s words. Silence continued to reign as the other set of eyes in the room stared at her beseechingly. “You must let Pamela know her punishment.”
“What?” she asked confused.
“She caused a blood offense,” Godric explained. “She owes you her blood.”
Sookie grimaced with the explanation as it brought her back to the moment where she thought the large loss of the life-giving elixer was close to bringing her to a hazy death. “I don’t want her blood,” Sookie blurted out nervously. “Pam please sit. It feels like I’m supposed to knight you if you’re on your knees like that.” Pam remained in her submissive position, unwilling to move till her maker had given her permission to do so.
“You must punish her,” Eric encouraged. “She must bleed for her sins.”
“No,” she expressed with a buried fear. “No more bleeding.”
“It is okay Sookie,” Godric spoke softly, reaching out to rub her shoulder tenderly. “She need not literally bleed for a blood offense.”
“I get what a blood offense is Godric,” she sighed slumping into Eric, her body still weak from the previous evening’s events. “Eric and I spent a whole night on it. Pam was not acting with malice she has no blame. Besides I’m not a full supernatural, according to your rules I’m beneath her. I shouldn’t be demanding this of her.” A look travelled between maker and child that forced Eric to remain silent of Sookie’s newly discovered Royal Heritage.
“She has unnecessarily caused bloodshed,” Godric spoke with ill contained anger. “This is a grave offense, especially for one of your stature. If your kin were here they would not hesitate to ask for her true death.”
“No,” Sookie returned with slight fear of the prospect. “She acted in my protection. If Eric and I really had been stuck in some weird fairy dream she would have saved me. She acted against her maker.” Eric and Godric growled loudly with her last sentence as Pam uttered another apology to her maker.
“Your progeny is clearly not ready to be on her own,” Godric expressed icily to his own child. Eric merely nodded with subservience at his statement.
“Excuse me?” Sookie said incensed, she felt most appalled with Eric’s lack of defence for Pam. “Her actions prove the exact opposite. She risked her own life at the hand of her maker for mine because she understood the repercussions that would bring. She acted in Eric’s interest when she thought he couldn’t. I think that makes her more capable than any of you to stand on her own.”
“Forgive me master,” Pam spoke with a tear trickling down her porcelain facade. “I feared you would never forgive yourself if she came to harm at your hands.”
“You are forgiven,” Eric replied with only a hint of warmth to hide the true pride from his own maker. “You acted with good intentions even if the outcome was perilous for yourself. Sookie I suggest you punish her with lashings or confinement to a silver coffin.”
“Are you insane?” she retorted with fire erupting in her irises, sparkling her dark brown eyes with flames of amber. “I am not going to give her any punishment let alone corporal punishment.”
“You must punish her,” Godric commanded making it clear to Eric that he would be reporting all goings on of this with the Brigants. “If it is known you have not asserted your right by blood others will not hesitate to attack you.”
“Sookie, please,” Eric requested making her feel the necessity through the bond.
“Fine,” Sookie huffed out in annoyance. “Pam your punishment is to never call me mistress again unless some vamp protocol demands it.”
“Beloved,” Eric spoke softly trying to cool her temper. “That is not a proper punishment. Do I have to remind you of our lessons?”
“No. I remember just fine,” she returned, her lips twitched back and forth thinking on a punishment she could live with that would appease the blood hungry vampire set. “Pamela Swynford de Beaufort for cause of my shed blood you will owe a healing by your blood to myself, my brother or any of our direct descendants. Do you accept this punishment?”
“You honour me with your request Mistress,” Pam countered with a knowing smirk as she recognised Sookie’s clever punishment. “My blood is yours to keep, Mistress.” She raised herself to her full height again and bowed lowly in Sookie’s direction.
“Shit,” Sookie exclaimed. “I knew I should have worked in that no mistress thing in there.”
Eric chuckled as he kissed the crown her hair softly. “You did very well my sweet.”
“Are you coming with us to Mississippi now that you’re here?” Sookie asked of Godric as she stirred her pot of chicken soup. Jason had texted her ‘sick’ which was code for ‘bring me copious amounts of foods’. The oven was brimming with the Southern comfort foods that her Gran had always prepared for them if they had so much as the sniffles.
Godric looked up from his kakuro puzzle to answer her. “I think not. When you get to be my age my mere presence is always a threat. Whether I intend it to be or not.”
“From what age did that start to happen?” Sookie asked after tossing in an extra helping of salt before tasting the soup again. She hummed in approval and declared it done. She portioned it out in small container as she continued to listen to Godric.
“A millennia and a half, I think,” he said trying to approximate the moment. “Other vampires started avoiding me. I did not know if they feared me or simply lost interest in me. A younger vampire gave me his pet in offering once, I concluded it was fear from then on.”
“What do you do with another’s pet?” Sookie demanded, disgusted at the idea. She could never fathom pawning off Tina on someone else permanently and hoped Sam was still enjoying her company. The pile of food seemed to be growing in front of her as she put the now cooled baked goods in a lined basket.
“I set it free,” Godric shrugged as his pen continued to move over his puzzle. “I never had pets. I didn’t see the need to change that.”
“Because you like to hunt?” she enquired while munching on one of the oatmeal cookies. “Are you a drain ‘em till they’re dry vampire?”
He gave her a curious look. Her questions held no judgement in them, it was like she was asking a fellow human if he preferred steak to chicken. “I was in my younger years. Everything gets old in such a long existence, including such thrills.”
“Must get monotonous if blood is the only thing you can ingest,” Sookie noted as she stared at the mountain of food she had assembled for her brother. She sat a little aside for herself to place in the freezer in Eric’s kitchen.
“There is some variation,” Godric shrugged. “The synthetics are fine. Does a human really eat this much?”
“A human? No,” she offered with a small smile. “Jason Stackhouse when he’s sick? Yes.”
“I envy the human’s ability to get sick you know,” Godric confessed as he set down his pen and puzzle to help Sookie pack the food into a crate.
“What in heavens for?” she demanded with an audible gasp. While she had suffered no worse than a cold her whole life she had seen disease destroy and deteriorate her loved ones. It was something she wouldn’t wish on her worst enemies.
“Not for the illness. That is truly awful but there’s a natural progression towards the end,” Godric explained as he curiously sniffed at the foods. “A person comes to terms with their mortality. A vampire only has a millisecond of a warning before someone drives a stake through his or her heart.”
“You can get silver poisoning,” she offered almost consolingly. “Or Hep C.”
“Yes but that is inflicted externally, our bodies don’t turn against ourselves. There is no happenstance in poisoning,” he said while eyeing the stew with suspicion. “This looks like the remains of a demon.”
“I assure you it’s not,” she informed pointedly, taking it from him and securing it amongst the other containers. “Give humans with malice enough time and I’m sure they’ll find something to make you ill.”
“Why do you think the worst of your own kind?”
“Asks the man who likes the thought of becoming ill,” she countered with a slight edge to her voice. “You know why.”
“I think you would judge our kind better if you could read our minds too,” Godric returned. Sookie hadn’t known that Godric knew of her telepathy until he had expressed her concern with her arrangement with Eric. She never spoke much about it but he seemed to offer good insight on most things so she appreciated it when it was freely given. “Does Eric know of your ability?”
“It hasn’t come up,” she shrugged. “Why should it matter, I can’t invade his mind.”
“You should be cautious with who you share such things with,” Godric spoke with concern. “It might change how he regards you.”
“You think I should keep this from him?” she asked confused. Her Gran had always emphasised honesty in relationships, whether it was with your neighbour or your loved one.
“I think you shouldn’t tell him unless you have to,” Godric said discerningly as he picked up the heavy crate. “It will keep you safe.”
Sookie trailed behind him with a bag of goods, turning off the lights in their trail. “Why do you think Eric incapable of keeping me safe?” she enquired while enabling the house alarm.
“He is only just over a thousand years old,” he returned with his nose barely peaking over the top of the fully filled crate, reminding her of that Eric needed another five hundred to go unchallenged.
“You think he’ll hand me over to Russell like some pet?” she asked incredulously as they filled up the trunk.
“It’s possible,” Godric spoke non-committedly. “It may not be his choice.”
“Our bond, despite the circumstances of its origin, should prevent that,” she replied as they got into Eric’s SUV to make the drive to Bon Temps.
“You have only bonded once,” Godric reminded. “Your Fae status might help you out but if Eric’s hand is forced there is little he can do in that moment. The moment he can act, it might be too late.”
“Why do I feel you’re purposefully scaring me?”
“Maybe I am,” he shrugged. “You should be scared.”
“Life’s too short to waste on being scared all the time,” Sookie announced while bringing the engine to life.
“Perhaps if that applied to me I would not worry so much,” Godric chuckled.
They discussed the intricacies of royal vampire courtships on their way to Bon Temps as Eric’s lesson plan of the night had fallen by the wayside. Godric asked to be dropped off at the graveyard to visit Adele when they reached the town limits while Sookie brought Jason his requested supplies. She noted her brother was hardly worth calling sick and by the state of his fridge she assumed he was just missing some home cooking. When she called him out on it he sheepishly admitted missing her food. Missing his sister was an afterthought to that spoken with little sincerity. She didn’t know how happy Eric would be if she brought Jason to his house but she made a mental note to ask so they could resume their usual Sunday dinners as she noticed she missed his company too.
When Sookie had gone to pick up Godric he had asked to be able to spend the day at Sookie’s home. She gave him a spare set of keys and apologised for the dust that had gathered in her absence. He joked his days of allergies had long gone but he remained pensively quiet after that. Godric promised to drop by Eric’s house the following night before he would depart back to his retreat in Jackson Hole and they would set off for Russell’s Barbecue.
Sookie stopped over at Merlotte’s for a quick bite where everything had stayed exactly the same as she had left it. After catching up with everyone she was soon on the road again. She drove past Fangtasia and hoped that the long line out the front really wasn’t meant for Eric’s biting entertainment as Pam had told her a few nights ago.
As exciting and new everything was when it was just the two of them at Eric’s house, Sookie realised they were going to need to talk about what being together meant in the rest of the world. She was pulled from her thoughts when a convoy of police vehicles sped past her in the direction of Fangtasia. She made a quick U-turn to follow the red and blue lights and sirens as she overheard the words ‘damn fangers’ and ‘got ‘em now’ from some of the officer’s minds.
She couldn’t follow at the same speeds so she arrived to a Fangtasia in utter chaos. The patrons were fleeing everywhere like rats abandoning a sinking ship as she saw a painfully subdued group of vampires carried off into the specially designed vehicles she knew were lined with silver. The barely spent tires screeched with the sudden force of her insistent feet and instantly she jumped out, leaving the car parked halfway across the entrance road.
“Ma’am you can’t be here,” an officer spoke sternly as he tried to direct her away as she was blocking the exit for the police vehicles.
“Like hell I can’t!” she seethed. “What gives you the right to lock up these vampires?”
He gave her a disgusted look, “What’s an innocent girl like you doing belonging to a vamp.” His last word was expressed with particular derision towards her with assumption.
“I’m not some fangbanger or pet,” Sookie returned, as the fire of her temper seemed to glow as hot as coals. “The owners do belong with me!” He had the audacity to laugh at her, which only caused her to become madder.
What idiot these fangbangers are. I’m sure she won’t know we’re detaining these vamps without warrants.
“Do you have a warrant?” Sookie demanded as the officer paled a little. “What exactly are you charging them on anyway?”
“One of your nocturnal friends was caught feeding on the premises,” he replied talking so slowly as if she were of that peace of mind. “So all the vamps have to go bye bye now.”
“Fucking Pig!” she spat out. “That’s a fine to the establishment not an arrest.”
“They’re all suspects as of now,” he answered even though his mind told Sookie he was making it up on the spot.
“Bullshit,” she yelled to the testy officer who seemed to be garnering some backup from two other colleagues. Sookie was glad to hear at least one of them agreed with her. “What are you gonna do? Scrape down their fangs for evidence?” she mocked knowing the police force were still lacking the forensics methods to establish such things. Vampire DNA just hadn’t been mapped out properly yet and they had been predictably reluctant in assisting in that.
“Even if you caught someone red handed,” she said grimacing at her unintended pun. “You know to hand that vamp over to the local vampire Sheriff. Who you seemed to have locked up with the rest of them. Who’s in charge here anyhow?”
“That would be me,” the third man said. “Ma’am is that your vehicle?”
“Yes, I’ll move it when you let out those you are unlawfully prosecuting,” Sookie voiced with a steeled face. When he didn’t budge and his thoughts were considering forcefully removing her she upped the ante. “Lieutenant Shipper, is it?” she noted reading his badge before pulling out her phone. “I’ll just call Nan Flanagan of the AVL to inform her of your failure to follow protocol. I’m sure those media outlets circling behind us are just going to jump at your ineptitude.”
He eyed her warily as his thoughts ran rampant at how this night had turned so wrong, the evidence they held was weak, it was a single misdemeanour where they had thought to find many. “Move your vehicle ma’am,” he said with annoyance and a pretence of politeness as he reluctantly signalled for another officer to release the vampires. He hated the enforced quota the county had set them on vampire crimes. Their annual bonuses depended on making those targets and a clean sweep like this would have taken the pressure off for the rest of the year. It was all about the appearance of being tough on vampire crime rather than actually being it. They had prepared months for this raid but had found nothing so far to charge anyone with. The ‘victim’ of the bite wasn’t even willing to press charges against the vampire.
Sookie assumed the victim was the stick figure of a woman screeching at the top of her lungs in the background. The grating noise gave her enough to realise she would be better off moving the car before the officer decided to arrest her to meet his other quotas.
As she got out of the properly parked car Sookie saw how all the vampires were handed into Eric and Pam’s custody. They were all badly damaged by silver nets that had entrapped them.
“You two look awful,” she said while hugging Eric, glad to see that he appeared to be okay and healing faster than the others.
“Silver nets will do that to a person,” Pam drawled.
“I meant your clothing,” Sookie jested in an admonishing tone Pam usually reserved for her. She had never seen them in their Fangtasia costumes before and they looked downright ridiculous in their garbs. “You look like Elvira,” she snickered as relief washed over her that she didn’t have to figure out how to bail out two vampires when they were supposed to leave for Mississippi the next night.
“We can’t all look like pixies at a vampire bar,” Pam sneered back.
“Pam get everyone a blood on the house before you release them,” Eric instructed coolly before Pam outed Sookie any further in front of the other vampires. “You know what to do with Tarynn.” His progeny simply nodded as she seamlessly reverted back to her role as second in command.
“You ok?” Sookie asked softly looking up from his chest. “Do you need my blood?”
He smiled down at her offering before kissing her on the forehead. “As enticing as that is my sweet advocate, it’s not safe to have the scent of you blood lingering among a bunch of weakened vampires.” He guided her back to the car by the small of her back as they both overheard the Lieutenant inform the media how they had successfully responded to an anonymous sighting of an illegal feeding and handed over the perpetrator to the appropriate vampire authority.
Sookie snorted at his loose interpretation of the evening’s events as she got into the car to get home. “Why didn’t you resist your arrest?” Sookie asked as Eric lingered in the open doorway as she fastened her seatbelt.
“It would have caused more damage for everyone involved,” he shrugged. “This is not a battle worth fighting if it makes things more difficult in the long run.” She nodded in understanding.
“You’ll be home soon?” Sookie tested with a little desperation in her voice she didn’t even know she had been feeling. She just wanted to care for his wounds even though she knew he was perfectly capable of healing those on his own.
“Soon,” he promised as he crouched down to take her lips to his. She eased for the first time since arriving that night at the feel of him, surrendering to his touch. His tongue slid along her bottom lip pushing at the crease. Lost in the sensation she opened up to him for the first time, a tongue finding another for a gentle caress as his thumbs soothed over her flushed cheek as she fingered the leather of his vest. Reluctantly he let go of her lips when he sensed her necessity to breathe in again, his mouth travelled down her throat where he briefly scented the blood that lay taunting in her veins. “Soon,” he repeated now more for his own benefit than hers. When he pulled away from her she looked up at him with a startle. A lingering look was cast as he closed the door on the car before he sped back inside to attend to the evening’s unearthed paperwork.
“Some first kiss,” she whispered with a smile to the rear-view mirror as her index finger traced the plump lip that had swollen as if stung by bees.
Sookie paced back and forth like a caged animal in front of the large panes of glass in the living room while she kept an eye out for the approaching headlights of Eric’s car. She ran out the front door when she first caught sight of them and flung herself into his arms again as soon as the car door opened.
“I could get used to this,” he murmured into her hair as she refused to let up on her iron grip on him. She simply hummed in agreement in return.
“You should install some UV lights in the bathrooms,” Sookie said after a while. She had quite the time to think of things while pacing. “Keeps people from using drugs in there too.”
Eric just made an agreeable noise as he continued to enjoy the closeness of the embrace between them. An intimacy he had never experienced before and he never thought to enjoy. e found himself more content than in any other physical interaction he had experienced before. It was almost as comforting as the fairy healing she had performed on him.
“Toss the police force some delinquent vampires now and then,” she continued into his chest. ”So they meet their quotas by the end of the year.”
The things she was telling him made sense until he was pulled from his own reverie as he analysed her words.
“How did you know it happened in the bathrooms?”
Shit, she cursed to herself as she realised that was something she had picked up from someone’s mind. Remembering her earlier conversation with Godric she fibbed, hiding the nature of her mental procurement.
“I can feel you’re lying to me,” he said with a steel edge as she stiffened in his hold. Cursing internally wasn’t going to safe her from his scrutiny this time. A large gulp was the last audible sound before she was whisked away in his hold and pinned down on the sofa. The frightening silence was soon replaced as all she could hear was his deafening growl.
“What are you?”
A/N: So Pam got her hair back 😉 and I left you all in a terrible place… I blame Bill even though he’s conveniently absent in this story 😀