A/N: A small reminder since it was many chapters ago that it was last mentioned as we haven’t heard from Godric in a while: Godric was an accidental turning. He was a slave that was simply a lesson in turning where they fully expected him to be an Impurus that would be staked upon rising as the Sanguine traditionally sourced their prospective children from aristocratic families. Since his maker was so young they were raised as siblings. This chapter delves into those beginnings a bit and gives some motivation to his difficulty to express any warmth towards Eric and where his political stance in the Impurus/Sanguine relations comes from.
“Sookie has learned quite a lot from an insight into the human world’s finest procurers of intelligence,” Godric deduced astutely remembering Sookie’s association with the different intelligence agencies of the world. “There is much to learn from them.”
“Yes,” Aelia agreed. “My instincts would have been to end the Impurus and his pet while we waited for the next to take his place. This works in our favour in more ways than one.”
I couldn’t help but beam with pride at my Sookie, because that is what she had agreed to be earlier in the night despite the weight of a bond that was requested from her. “Thank you,” Sookie said softly out of courtesy, it had become quite apparent to me she did not take to accolades well. Her deeds had always been silent ones and with no one else to stand witness to that, little appreciation was given in return. I grabbed her hand and kissed it softly to express my gratitude and a small smile appeared from her lips and her distaste with my earlier actions was momentarily erased from her burning eyes.
“So how about our later,” I leered because I didn’t think I would be able to dig my grave any deeper than I already had that night.
“Remember our earlier conversation,” she said pointedly with narrowed eyes as she softly petted my forearm before dropping it unceremoniously. “All I gotta say is you better start getting real friendly with that hand of yours.”
Remember when I was so happy to see everyone laugh… not so much anymore.
Sookie truly was a gift to my child. She brought out a side to Eric I never knew existed and that isn’t the horndog she was speaking of. I had experienced the sensations of that residing in him in the early days often enough, it disappeared as soon as his memories refocused on Sookie. Apparently she was now responsible for the resurrection of that particular personality trait. Fortunately I didn’t seem to mind its presence as much as I had in the past.
Perhaps it was my downtrodden moods that lingered inside Eric that had lightened in Sookie’s care. I remember she did much the same for me in the few moments of interaction we ever shared. I had always disregarded Eric’s romantic notions, his flowery words, that there was a light that resided inside her. I couldn’t deny it much anymore as I stood witness to it. It had nothing to do with the fae spark that sat there happily beside it. There was something that burned brightly almost as blindingly as the ire in her eyes now.
It was probably an accurate assessment to assume that the ‘horndog’ would be residing in the doghouse for a while. Little did Eric know that the tempers of the fae are legendary and a grudge is held excessively long. As in centuries long. Due to the late hour there was little of that resistance present and upon taking notice of Sookie’s exhaustion I encouraged Eric to take her home. Leaving it to him where he takes his day rest, or rather to Sookie in this instance.
“Their passion is still so young and untamed,” Aelia regarded with a wistful smile once they departed our company. “Don’t you miss it?”
“We are no longer young,” I returned to my Grandest Sire who was my senior by a good few millennia. She smirked knowingly at my acknowledging of the untamed. We both knew better, Sanguine or Impurus, a vampire would never be tame. Though Sookie seemed to be quite the lion tamer judging by her performance with Eric tonight.
“They are good together,” she observed while simultaneously raking her eyes over Sookie’s intricate script.
“I sense there is more to your statement than that,” I returned testing the waters of how concerned I should be. She had seemed friendly and familiar with Sookie and though that should have concerned me it had not so far. Perhaps because Sookie responded equally warm in return to Aelia and I trusted her judgement of character.
“I forget in your absence that you are the only one that speaks as well as I,” she retorted with an approving smile.
“You were a good tutor,” I conceded in return.
“Not all were as apt pupils as you,” Aelia complimented sincerely. She set the sheets of paper aside, now firmly committed to her memory. It was a trait that ran strong in all the females of our line, it was Pamela’s most strongly pronounced gift. It made her an excellent administrator, which was what the monarchs concerned themselves with mostly. “You still won’t consider a more political role?”
“Times are too turbulent,” I offered in excuse. I had one for her every time she asked, they were all justifiable objections but they were never the true reason. We both knew I didn’t aspire to such high stations even though I had the acumen for it.
Two thousand years and still I could not reconcile the inequality that our changed DNA forced us to. Frankly we held humans in higher regard than the Impurus. Everything around us changed bar that, our family motto even taunted us with it. Animum debes mutare, non caelum [You must change your disposition, not your sky]. A change of scenery would not change the root of your problems, only through progression do we survive. We were known for our adaptation with time and sense of civic duty, a Sanguine of the house of Aurelie was yet to leave a post in disgrace. Problems were faced head on, and in less prestigious positions many Aurelies like me had acted as mediators among the different houses. However, Aelia simply refused to change her position on this specific subject along with the other oldest and strongest houses of Sanguine.
“You must consider your childe and his intended too,” she supplemented, aiding me in the lie we created together. I simply nodded in agreement as we watched a restored Mr Compton pick up his pet and depart. The girl seemed extremely happy in her deception despite his apparent apathy for her. They were not all decent, the Impurus, but neither were all the Sanguine. Compton’s delight with coming out relatively unscathed was clearly legible on his face. Pam had held him on instinct of his close proximity to the scene of the crime. I was proud to see she had relied on that instinct as strongly as I had taught her so long ago. It had paid off well tonight.
“What do you remember of the fae?” I asked concerned with the new threat to our reigns.
“Much,” she answered frugally which meant it would take much to pull it from her. A very human sigh escaped from my lips which only caused her to laugh at me. I could not remember a night where there had been so much of that. It should not have surprised me, during times of crisis one either laughed or cried, often a combination of both.
“Two hours till sundown Aelia,” I said shaking my head. “And you answer with much.”
“There is much to tell of the fae,” she countered slightly piqued, though it was obviously for dramatic effect. We knew each other’s tells far too well through the many ages between us. “Did Lucius not instruct you thoroughly?” Aelia taunted.
“You know my Grandsire had little concern with the past.”
“Yes,” she returned with a slight irritation. “I believe that is what killed him in the end.”
“Perhaps,” I responded not fully in agreement with her assessment of her favoured grandchild’s sudden death. It was, however, a discussion I had stopped having with Aelia over centuries ago, when we had both agreed to disagree. “I know much of the fae but not about them.”
“Our magic was stronger alongside theirs,” Aelia said with a hint of melancholy as she gazed longingly at her impeccably manicured hands. “We could be out in the sun with no repercussions. The powers were stronger inside of us. We had it all; the sun, the moon and an eternity of time.”
“Our kind killed them, were we not aware of their influence?” I asked to which her sullen face immediately turned to one of silent fury. I knew she would never harm me as a beloved great-grandchild, however, without that knowledge I would have sincerely feared her capability at wrath.
“The Impurus killed them,” she sneered in correction. “Weakening us and themselves even further.” I wondered how selective her memory was of these events, just like her interpretation of my Grandmaker’s death. I did not know if this was her source of distaste towards the Impurus or if that existed within her long before that, the vitriol was palpable in the air nonetheless.
“Yet some have managed to survive in human blood lines,” I observed of Sookie and the possible unidentified mind warper that brought further threat to our reigns.
“None were supposed to be left behind when they sealed the portals to Faerum.”
“I was told they were extinct,” I said with a recognisable surprise that I did not bother to hide, until now I had merely assumed Sookie was a remnant of a forgotten species.
“Lucius truly was negligent in this department,” she noted admonishingly like he were a truant child. Incidentally she always encouraged and enjoyed the unapologetic behaviour that was his continued mischief well into old age. It was not unlike the behaviour Sookie had elicited from Eric in their pretence earlier this night. Just like Eric it landed Lucius in continued trouble with the strong minded women like Aelia in his life. “You are right, two hours will not inform you of what you will need to know. The necessary tomes will be in your room by sundown tonight.” Her hands flew away at her phone typing instructions to the librarian at Aelia’s estate that would surely have the required volumes packed and sent away within minutes of her orders.
I was reminded of the castor’s words who had removed the spell from the former inhabitants of Sookie’s home. The magic had been unlike any she had encountered before and she sensed an unusual presence of magic in the woods beyond the house. I too sensed ‘something’ when she had shown it to me but I had no real reference of what I was looking for.
“I think a portal resides on Sookie’s lands,” I informed Aelia, her distraction with the orders she was sending out at rapid speeds lay quickly forgotten. The phone thudding loudly on the table in the process. Her eyes were wide with attention at my off handed comment. “Would you be able to tell?”
“Only if it is still functioning,” she said with a youthful eagerness I had not seen in Aelia since I could still accurately describe myself as such. “You sensed a presence of otherworldly magic?”
“Yes,” I admitted. “The witch who removed the spell binding the former tenants to Sookie’s home said it was unlike any she had ever come across. I knew as little as she as to the source. Till tonight.”
Aelia didn’t respond which meant her mind was going into overdrive and rather than let me into the myriad of thoughts that resided there, her elegant fingers typed away more ferociously than before. I got up leaving her to it, a greeting passed my mouth but I knew it would never reach her in this state. Thankfully the room was light tight otherwise I might find her still sitting here tomorrow at sunset looking the same red shade as her dress.
As I passed Sophie Anne, who seemed to be happily filing away at her nails for hours on end, I was reminded it wasn’t just with Sookie that Eric was in trouble with. Lucius’ wild blood seemed to be settling into Eric in more ways than one. Andre had been disrespectful but had no knowledge of Sookie’s elevated status. His eyes should have told him as much but Sophie Anne did not foster much intelligence in her children. Regardless, Eric would have to know those actions could not continue to stand unpunished even if the rules of the Sanguine dictated otherwise.
I contemplated a stroll in the wooded landscape beyond, perhaps revisit the path where mine and Eric’s crossed into this shared one. The heavens halted my plans as the rain washed away heavily at the thin material of my linen tunic. I had yet to find a fabric I was more attached to, unfortunately it did not hold up well in the rain so I reluctantly moved indoors.
I circumvented checking in on Pam knowing she and Kristian would be in her private quarters for hours, undisturbed in their mutual rediscovery of each other thinking us all unaware. I checked on Eric through the bond who was already asleep, well ahead of schedule. Either Sookie had been quick with forgiveness or he had chosen to initiate his day rest to avoid feeling the strain of her possible reprimands.
Settling into the sumptuous bed with my newest novel had my thoughts running back to the first time I ever experienced such a luxury. I had shared it with my Maker then, who insisted I sleep beside her after she bathed the dirt from me that had resided there long before Lucius and she had buried me in the ground. I cried profusely in her arms at the comfort I found, it wasn’t from relief but rather guilt that someone like me would be afforded this much. In truth the guilt had never disappeared.
Lucius raised us as siblings as we were but a mere year apart. In our private sphere of two, Tulla would care for me like a mother as I adjusted to the customs of a world she was borne into. In return I became the family to her that she so dearly missed. Our trajectories, however, moved in opposite ways. She stood high at the beginning and fell fast while from my humble start I could only move up. Despite all the riches she can afford, she now lives a humble reclusive life. It has been centuries since we spoke, she was never quite the same after Lucius’ death. Another thing that we shared but could never seem to express. We only corresponded briefly when Eric was born. Officially I required her permission though there were exemptions with emergency turnings such as Eric’s.
Regardless I would never need to ask anything of Tulla, she would say yes to anything I requested. It never entered my mind to assure her I was well after the attack in the sense that Sookie and Eric had done immediately with their loved ones. It would be nearing the late afternoon in her part of the world and I knew she spent that time in the sun every day. No one was there to be frightened by the intense sunburn she would carry afterwards, so she indulged herself with the warming rays, perhaps the only luxury she still afforded herself without qualm.
The telephone rang two times before she answered, “Godric, I have been expecting your call.” I doubted her home had been progressing with modern times for her to possess caller ID, for I would be the only one to ever call her.
“For how long?” I couldn’t help but ask. The tittering of her response was one I could never help but revel in. Her spirit had always been light to my own darkness and it blossomed effulgently in her simple existence, life away from court suited her best. Were it not for Eric I would be seeking a similar way of life.
“But a few days,” she confessed with what I knew was a contained smile on her face. From her human days as high noble woman she had been trained never to express the depths of her emotions on the exterior and even in the privacy of her own company those teachings never faltered. “Something is different with your child.”
“Eric,” I returned offering the name she wouldn’t have issue remembering, but I wanted her to feel the pride I had in him through our faint bond.
“I knew you would make a good father,” Tulla encouraged upon receiving the affection I held for him. It reminded me of how I had given Sookie the same compliment that night. The words had left my mouth before my rationale had the thought to intervene, only then did I realise the misinterpretation that could have been had. Sookie proved to be more than I had accredited to her when she understood exactly what I had meant to say. That her expression of affection was an easier one to understand for Eric than mine would ever be.
“I am not always so sure of that myself,” I admitted while trailing the spine of the untouched novel that sat in my lap. I had never felt anything from Eric that would make me think as much, his declaration that I was the best Maker to him had momentarily filled me with pride earlier that night. Only later did it sink in he only ever knew one Maker, it was not a position one could compete for like that of a favoured child. I had stolen that from Tulla without desire to with Lucius, the blood simply ran stronger in me and it had dictated our fates since.
“Is it still dark on your side of the world?”
“The sun is not up,” I answered though I knew she was asking after a different kind of darkness that had nothing to do with my geographic location.
“That is not what I am asking of you,” she chided with a lightness of tone that always pulled more answers from me than a scolding one ever did.
“It is darker than normal,” I confessed, “I no longer know where to stand.”
“Your heart could be so much bigger if you would just allow it Godric,” she pleaded with me. It was an appeal she had requested of me many times but not even a Maker’s command could let it come to be. Incapable of answering I merely let out a sigh in response indicating I no longer wished to speak of it.
“What made you call,” Tulla asked instead.
“I was remembering the first time I lay in such a comfortable bed after you washed me,” I answered honestly. It wasn’t often I indulged in reminiscence, the past was mostly indifferent to me with a few high and low points. Lucius had taught us that, there was little we could change once it had occurred there was no use fighting the past. Tulla always took that lesson more aptly than I ever did, she accepted things as they came not as she wished them to be.
“It was a first for me too,” she returned warmly as the weightlessness of her spirit danced along the severity of mine in our intertwined bond. “I had never bathed anyone else before, but you were so weary of the servants.”
“You were so confident,” I whispered in memory, my voice as quiet as it was then, finding it hard to believe her words.
“Confidence is best faked when you have little of it Godric,” Tulla offered in explanation and it was a statement I couldn’t help but agree with. “I had to be the strong one when you were so ill equipped to handle what this new world offered you.”
“You are the best Maker,” I said gifting her the words that had momentarily filled me with pride when they had been spoken to me. The only difference was to Tulla there had been a competition between two, she lost to me with Lucius as I became the favoured child, however, with me she would always win. She was silent but the bond spoke enough for the both of us, it wasn’t pride that swelled her heart. There was acceptance and adoration that reverberated between us. In a small way my heart surged along with hers.
“What inspired you to say this to me?” she finally asked with a shake to her voice that informed me tears had fallen from her eyes. The words had come from Eric but I knew Sookie was the inspiration that had him sharing them with me.
“The thing that is different with my child,” I offered though I had yet to find an accurate answer to what that was exactly. Tulla was never one to demand exacting answers so it would not matter to her what the true source was.
“Then you must carry the gratitude in which this gift is given,” she said encouragingly. “It has done so much for you already.”
Without all the answers Tulla knew exactly of what she spoke, Sookie was not merely a gifted individual that coaxed unknown depths from Eric. She was a gift to us all. Sookie had walked a similar path to mine coming from rags to riches but she stuck to her core. It was an exceedingly generous one that now included me. Perhaps her unending status as an outsider saw little need to alter herself to the pleasure of others. A quiet strength resided in her that was not unlike Tulla’s, born out of insecurity, it was the light that burned so brightly in them both. That attitude had made me see there was more to the vanity that surrounded our gilt existence for the first time.
My heart. It had grown bigger from her mere presence. Somewhere I had allowed for it and that truly was a gift greater than us all.
A/N: So I hope you appreciated a bit of Godric and the background to the Fae/Sanguine relations, even if it took us away from Eric and Sookie a bit. We will get back to them next time and I promise Sookie won’t hold a grudge against Eric for centuries as we delve back into the mystery with Staci and a-hole Bill and whoever it is that hides behind them. The Family tree is now adjusted to show the relations to Lucius and Tulla.