The silver on his body and then the sun burning into his leg did not allow Bill to sleep with the day. He tried a few times to struggle against his silver bindings, but that just caused him more pain as they cut further into his body with each movement. Slowly, throughout the day, his memories returned as his brain healed.
Bill tried to close his eyes in order to close out his memories of the night before; however, they flooded him as vividly as if he were experiencing them once again.
Things had been going exactly as Bill had planned. He rose with the night and fed heartily from two of the humans he kept around for that purpose. He generally didn’t feed that much, but he wanted to be strong for the upcoming action. Also, when he sampled Hunter later that night, he didn’t want to be tempted to take too much. The boy was too precious to him.
The human mercenaries he’d hired arrived on time and were quickly given precise instructions by his own guards, who were to lead them. They were all well-trained soldiers for hire—the kind that would do anything to anyone if the price was right—and Bill outfitted them with specially-made semi-automatic Berretas, complete with wooden bullets.
Simon Brown brought along his three associates, and Bill paid them half of their promised fee; the other half was waiting to be transferred into their accounts after a successful offensive, as per their agreement.
Bill was extremely pleased by the vampire mercenaries. One of them, a female named Beatrice, was over five hundred years old. And she was obviously quite powerful. He knew that between Simon and Beatrice, Pam would stand no chance. He ordered those two to make Eric’s bitch progeny their priority. The other two mercenaries, twins named Brandon and Brian, were quite a bit younger, not yet fifty years old, but they had already earned a reputation in Europe for their mercilessness. They would do well for the Werelioness, especially since she was pregnant, as well as the shifter―if he arrived back from the store in time to participate in the battle, that is. Bill was extremely pleased that the shifter, Jarod, had been sent away on his errand.
The twins could also take care of Jessica. Bill had been saddened that he would need to eliminate his once-progeny; however, he couldn’t leave witnesses, which meant that Jessica would have to die alongside her new maker.
Given the fact that Lafayette’s car was still at the farmhouse, Bill figured he could also easily take out both Jesus and Lafayette. That would save him from having to go to their home later that night and transporting them back to the site so that he could pin their deaths on Northman. Yes—their being at the farmhouse already was extremely convenient.
The only problem Bill could foresee concerned Sam Merlotte. The shifter would likely be suspicious of what had happened at the farmhouse, and since the two-natured were notoriously difficult to glamour, Bill knew that he couldn’t solve the problem that way. However, Bill knew that his own P.R. machine would quickly put down any rumors, and if Merlotte made too much trouble, he would simply meet with an ‘accident.’ Moreover, Bill intended to have Lillith secure Remy Savoy the next night so that he could enact his plan to ‘adopt’ Hunter as his own. And, of course, if Jason proved to be a source for good blood, he could be easily glamoured to go right along with Bill’s story that Eric had become unbalanced due to Sookie’s leaving him and had—along with his progeny, of course—gone on a murderous spree.
Bill had worked long and hard to build up his own reputation and good-standing in Bon Temps, and he’d donated a lot of money to fund various programs within the community. He knew that most of the residents there would—in their bovine simplicity—believe anything that he told them, even without glamour.
Yes—everything seemed to be going so perfectly.
Bill ordered the human gunmen to gather in the cemetery, but not to pass onto Sookie’s property. He knew that Bubba was famed for his nose, so Bill wanted his soldiers to stay out of his range until the last possible second. However, even the wind was working with Bill that night; the fact that his forces would be upwind from Sookie’s home meant that they would not be detected until they were already on top of Northman’s measly mishmash of “troops.” It would be all too easy to eliminate them.
Bill was quite confident in his plan. Once Bubba did smell the humans, Bill knew that the dim-witted vampire would brainlessly confront them, and he would be easily taken out by their wooden bullets. He knew that one or two of the humans might be killed by the mentally-challenged vampire, but those losses were more than acceptable to him. Once the gunmen had slain Bubba, their job would be to converge on the house, surround it, and help with any of Eric’s people who were left alive or who had run into the safety of the building.
The key part of Bill’s plan also happened just as he’d wished it to. At first dark, he’d sent Lillith to seduce Jason Stackhouse, an easy task for his beautiful vampire sister. She actually returned ahead of schedule. The opposite of his sister, Stackhouse was easily glamoured. He would lead them to Sookie’s house and then invite them in.
Bill planned to send the humans and the mercenaries ahead of him. He would follow with Lillith and Stackhouse a few minutes later. By the time he approached the house, he imagined that his threats would be mostly dealt with, but Lillith would be with him just in case they were not. Then Jason would let him in, and he would kill Eric―unless the vampire had succumbed to his condition the previous night as the witches had feared he would. A debilitated Eric would be an easy target in the little room that Sookie had called the cubby. And Bill knew just where it was located too, having taken a moment when he was at Sookie’s house for their dinner to find it as she’d been busy in the kitchen. The locking mechanism that he saw would be very easily broken.
Then, he would get the child, Hunter. Bill smiled in anticipation. Sookie would have been better, but the thought of having a child that he could mold and tie to him was a very close second. The boy was only five years old, so he would have years to enjoy his innocent blood—which would be all the more sweet because of his fairy lineage. Bill licked his lips in his eagerness to taste little Hunter.
Bill had already decided to make the boy his lover as well. He planned to wait until the child had grown into a young man of eighteen, but he was looking forward to that day already. Bill had not often had men sexually—as he preferred sex with females―but he knew that the combination of the young man’s blood with sex would be delectable just as the same combination had been with Sookie. He knew it would be difficult to wait for the boy to grow into a man, but he was resolved to do it.
He shook his head and cringed at a memory of Lorena forcing him to bite and bed a young girl of fifteen. No—he thought to himself—Lorena’s ways had been barbaric, and he would not take Hunter before he became an adult. The anticipation would be the best part, and he could at least enjoy the boy’s blood until then.
Bill also looked forward to tying Hunter to him by blood while he was still a child. That way, he could train the boy to be an effective telepath. He would help the child learn to raise his shields, as Sookie had done. Yes—he thought to himself with satisfaction—Hunter would give him the opportunity to make up for all the things he’d missed out on because Eric had taken Sookie from him. He knew that the boy would cling to him for his silence, just as Sookie had done. He knew that he’d be just what the boy needed after living with the heartless Eric Northman for so long.
And if Sookie ever did return from the fairy realm, she would find Hunter safe and happy with him, and Eric would be out of the picture—their blood tie a thing of the past. Bill was certain that Sookie would come to him and the boy. They would become a true family then―just like the one Lorena had stolen from him so many years ago.
Bill thought of his own human son—his little Thomas, who had died of the pox. The war and then Lorena had forced him to leave his family, and he’d last seen his little boy on that horrible night he’d tried to return to them after being under Lorena’s thumb for three years. His beautiful son had been dead, and his wife had rejected what he’d become. Yes—he thought—Hunter and possibly even a returned Sookie would allow for him to right all past wrongs that had been done to him.
Bill remembered setting his plan of attack into motion. The vampire mercenaries went toward the house from the road side, while the humans breached the property from the cemetery. Bill and Lillith walked slowly toward the house in between both groups; thus, he was able to monitor all of his forces from his position.
The first sign that there was something wrong came from a loud whirring sound in the direction of the vampire mercenaries. Bill watched in horror as a very alive and well Eric Northman swooped down from the sky like a bolt of lightning. The movements of the blond vampire were almost impossible to keep an eye on as he swung his long sword four times—exactly four. With each stroke, Eric took off one of the mercenary’s heads.
But the most horrific part had been the noise that emanated from Eric. It was a war cry, something that Bill had figured was a myth about Vikings. But that legend came to life as Eric yelled out a terrible battle cry even as he decapitated Bill’s most powerful soldiers.
At the sight and especially the sound of Eric, Bill made a quick choice, and since he was right at that moment closer to Sookie’s home than his own, he swept Jason up into his arms and hurried at vampire speed toward the farmhouse. Lillith followed quickly at his heels.
As he ran, Bill heard gunfire from the humans and saw Bubba fall. Bill felt a momentary surge of satisfaction, but like some kind of hellish ghoul, Bubba sat back up, and a parade of screams and yells were heard from the humans. Bill took in the sight with his vampire vision even as he raced toward the house. Eric was behind the human group then, having been joined by a pack of Werewolves as well as Thalia and two lions.
From their screams, Bill figured that many of his human soldiers were falling, but others were running toward the house, perhaps looking for the same shelter he was. Bill got up to the front porch and then was stopped by the sight of Pam and Jessica standing in front of the door, both dressed in all black. Both women growled―clearly ready for a fight. Bill pulled the heavily glamoured Stackhouse boy in front of him like a shield.
“Well hello, King Bill,” Pam said in that sarcastic voice he’d always hated, “to what do we owe the great pleasure of your visit, and my―oh my―don’t you look fetching tonight, Lillith.”
Bill looked straight at Jessica. “Jessica, as your maker, I command you to kill Pam!”
Pam growled as Jessica gasped next to her.
“How dare you, Bill!” Pam yelled. “You gave up all rights to Jessica when you decided to be a shitty maker!”
Pam looked at Jessica and then back at Bill. “And it was your fucking loss, Compton! Jessica is a magnificent vampire! She’s better and stronger than even I was at her age. And she’s already ten times the vampire you are!”
Jessica looked at Pam with gratefulness. The redhead stammered, “And Pam’s been a real maker to me, Bill. She loves me.” Jessica’s keen eyes quickly settled onto Jason’s form.
“One move and I will kill Stackhouse. You wouldn’t want that to happen, would you, Jessica?” Bill growled as he punched Jason roughly in the side.
His former child whimpered and shook her head. Bill was relieved when about ten of his gunmen, mostly his personal guards, ran up to his side. It seemed that Eric and the others were busy with the remaining humans.
Hoping to get to Jason, Jessica ran forward, but Bill yelled out, “Kill her!” to his guards.
The men shot at Jessica, but another whirr was heard, and the redhead was pushed out of the way. Eric stood in front of an injured Jessica like a blaze of glorious fury. Jessica had been hit in the side by a couple of bullets and was clearly in pain.
Somehow, Jason managed to get free of Bill’s hold. Even in his glamoured state, he tried to get to Jessica as the gunmen continued to fire at her and Eric. Eric was able to dodge their bullets and tried to draw their fire from Jessica, who was still on the ground. Meanwhile, Pam ran toward the gunmen with a dangerous growl.
Bill yelled, “Stop him!” One of Bill’s guards hit Jason with the end of his gun, clearly dazing him, before he could get to Jessica. Lillith scooped up Jason, and with Eric and Pam busy fighting the guards while dodging their bullets, Bill ran with Lillith to the house. Though barely conscious, Jason did as he’d been glamoured to do. He punched in his security code and invited Bill and Lillith into the house.
The unwelcome vampires had just passed the barrier of the home when Bill turned around. “Now have him rescind the invitations of Eric, Pam, Jessica, Bubba, and Thalia,” he yelled, remembering all the vampires he’d seen outside.
However, something unexpected happened that made Bill shrink back in fear. Before Lillith had a chance to glamour Jason to do as Bill wished, Jason said in a shaky voice, “Lillith, I rescind your invitation.” Bill saw Lillith fly out of the home as Jason passed out onto the floor. In that moment, Bill knew he was done for, but his own rage made him want for Eric to suffer right along with him.
Bill inhaled deeply, but instead of smelling the child on the second floor, he smelled him in the cubby. Bill hurried toward the piece of furniture that poorly concealed its entrance. If Bill was going to die that day, he was going to die with the fresh taste of the child’s blood on his lips and with the satisfaction that Eric would no longer have the boy. He pulled open the furnishing’s door, but was met with by an iron wall. He pounded on it but recoiled in pain as he realized that there was silver mixed into the iron as well.
He turned around and was met with a smiling Eric and the hilt of the Viking’s sword coming at him quickly. The sound of his own skull cracking had been Bill’s last conscious thought before he woke up in chains.
Bill tried to close his mind to these memories, but once his brain had fully healed, he relived them throughout the day―even as his leg slowly burned away and the silver became more and more embedded into his flesh. At one point, he managed to move his arm a bit, but it only shifted the blanket to the side so that the edge of his right hand joined his leg in meeting the sunlight.
Bill cried out uselessly as his tongue grew back slowly. He thought about how things could have been had it not been for Eric-fucking-Northman. He would have Sookie right now. By this time, she would have been irrevocably tied to him and would have been docile and obedient. She would have been well-trained in how to please him. She—no they—would have been blissfully happy.
And that happiness would have only increased once they had Hunter with them; together, they would have trained him to use his ability and would have raised him as their own son. He grunted into the blanket covering him.
He had only one last hope. If Lillith had somehow managed to escape the night before, she would come for him; of that he was certain. He tried to shut off the memories of Sookie, Eric, and his failed attack, but they kept creeping back to him as day slowly changed into night.