Disclaimer: I don’t own the characters in True Blood or the Southern Vampire Mysteries. So neither copyright infringement nor offense is meant. I simply want to make the characters do what I wanted them to do for a while. I am especially “unownerly” when it comes to this story. You will recognize a lot of the dialogue throughout as being quoted from Season 5 of True Blood, though I’ve tried to use Eric’s thoughts to make this story “different” from its source. That said, I claim no ownership to the quoted material and have placed it in bold so that it is set apart from my own words.
“We’ll take it from here. And don’t return to the Authority—until everything’s been cleaned up! Every single drop,” an authoritative voice said; I assumed he was speaking to the captain of the storm troopers.
Interesting. We wouldn’t have an escort. That meant that the vampires, whose car Bill and I had been stowed inside, were either very arrogant—or very lethal. I was hoping for the former.
Right as Authority flunky #1 closed the trunk lid, I thought I saw a head—more accurately, the back of a head—one that I recognized.
I contemplated for a moment. Could that really have been her, or was it just wishful thinking on my part? It was possible that it was her, given her position in the Authority, but I’d thought that she was in England.
In fact, the last time I’d spoken with Nora had been via phone—the day after Godric had died. And our maker hadn’t seen her for almost seventy years. Her position as a Chancellor of the Authority had demanded both her time and her severing of all ties with others.
Still—that glimpse seemed to move like her. I inhaled deeply, trying to catch a whiff of her subtle, though distinctive, scent—to see if I was right. But all I caught was the putrid smell of burnt Bill. So I stopped my sniffer immediately.
Thank the gods I didn’t have to breathe! Burnt Bill smelled worse than regular Bill!
I listened as two car doors slammed, and then the vehicle took off. That was a good thing actually. It meant that there were only two beings in the car with Bill and me. Of course, the silver netting had been left around us, though it had been mighty considerate of Authority flunky #1 not to lay it directly against our skin. There was more silver netting on the floor of the trunk, so that would thwart Bill and me from leaving the car by breaking through our small—very fucking small—”holding cell”; however, the odds were more in our favor now than they had been two minutes before, and I was nothing if not opportunistic.
The car turned sharply onto the main highway, causing Bill to roll into the silver a little. I could hear him sizzling, and he drew back from the silver quickly. He ended up pressed tightly against my body.
“Yeah?” Bill answered, obviously still in pain from the silver.
“You need a hug?” I smirked.
“What? No!” Bill yelled out.
“A fuck then?” My tone was dripping with sarcasm.
“What?” Bill asked again—this time with shock in his tone. “No!”
“Excellent,” I intoned. “Then don’t cozy up to ‘little Eric.’ He tends to make himself known when an ass is shoved up next to him—even if it’s an ass he’s not particularly anxious to fuck.” I chuckled. “No offense.”
Bill quickly shot away from my not so little “companion” as much as he could without touching the silver netting. “None taken.”
I decided to have a moment of fun at Compton’s expense. After all, there wasn’t much else to be done in the trunk of a car as one was speeding toward certain torture and likely death.
I brought my hand up to Bill’s shoulder and spoke in my most seductive tone. “Unless you meant to tease me, your majesty. Could it be that I am your last request before you meet the true death?”
“I hardly think, Eric . . . ,” Bill began with a stammer.
I blew gently into Bill’s ear. “Don’t think, Bill,” I purred. “Why not just feel? We may never have another chance like this.”
“Eric!” Bill yelled as he pushed his own body into the silver to get further away from me. “Your attentions are quite—uh—undesired!”
I couldn’t hold in my laughter anymore. And I backed off from Bill so that the Civil War veteran could move away from the silver again.
Bill looked over his shoulder to see the amused look on my face. “You were just . . . ,” he stammered.
“Fucking with you?” I finished Bill’s sentence with a wry chuckle. “Yes—but not literally.” I quirked a brow. “Again, no offense. You’re just not my type.”
“Good!” Bill said as he continued to try to compose himself.
I contemplated for a moment. “However, after you brought down a matching robe for me to wear earlier, I have to wonder if you don’t harbor some kind of,” I paused, “desire for me. You are curious about Vikings?” I asked, letting my accent come through. “You wish to test my pillaging skills?” I asked in my most seductive tone, barely holding in my laughter.
My erstwhile king stammered again. “I—uh—just happen to—uh—have several of that same robe!” he insisted in his own defense. “Feedings can get a bit messy, and the laundry service . . . ,” his voice trailed off as I laughed behind him.
“You fucking ass hole!” Bill intoned agitatedly.
“No thanks,” I deadpanned. “Again, you’re just not my type, Bill. I don’t care to fuck your asshole at all.”
Bill sighed dramatically. “You are what? Twelve years old?”
“Give or take a thousand,” I chuckled. “Still, I was initially quite—um—disturbed by those matching robes. Thankfully the one I was wearing wasn’t quite my size, so I knew you weren’t harboring some kind of fetish—not that a fetish or two is a bad thing.”
“No,” Bill said, chuckling in obvious relief that my flirting had been disingenuous. “I have no desire to court you with loungewear, Eric.”
I laughed heartily. “That is a comfort.”
We were quiet for a few minutes.
Finally Bill broke the silence. He spoke in a quiet voice, barely a whisper, “Do you still feel her? She is becoming,” he paused, “faint to me.”
“Yes,” I sighed, also speaking in barely a whisper. “She’s still there. She is sad, but she is also resolved. Pam is there now too, so no harm will be coming to her tonight.”
“But Pam is the one who fired a rocket at her,” Bill observed skeptically.
“True,” I relented. “But if I know my progeny, she will be trying to make up for that fact—so that I will forgive her and buy her something expensive.”
Bill chuckled, but then grew serious again. “So she’s alright then?” he probed.
“Yes—there is no more fear,” I confirmed quietly.
“You made a bond with her?” Bill asked, his voice now even lower in volume.
“Yes,” I verified. “The beginning of one.
“We both chose it,” I said in almost silent fervor, “when I had amnesia.”
Bill nodded in understanding.
“I do not regret it,” I added, feeling the need to make him understand that much—if nothing else. Hell—maybe I just wanted to share that fact out loud.
I didn’t regret the bond. I loved it.
He gave me a half-nod and a smile.
“However, I never got the opportunity to explain the bond to Sookie,” I shared. “And—obviously—it is now a moot point.”
“I’m sorry,” Bill said.
“What for?” I asked, legitimately mystified by what Bill could have to be sorry about. After all, I couldn’t blame him for loving Sookie—for still wanting her.
“I am sorry for giving her my blood again. She was yours―I could sense that—but she was also dying of a gunshot wound, and it was my fault,” Bill said in a tortured voice.
“How’s that?” I asked, trying to hold in my snarl.
Bill sighed. “One of my guards became confused during the fight and thought that Sookie was one of the witches after she used her light power,” he said contritely. “He shot her.” His voice grew cold. “He did not live out the night. I made sure of that.”
I was silent for a few moments. I couldn’t really blame Bill for his guard’s error. Such mistakes happened in the midst of battles. I recalled a time from my human days when I was fighting at night, swung my axe, and accidentally brained one of my own men—a friend of mine and a new father. It was war, and I had not meant to kill my friend, but I had still felt guilt for it. I could sense that same feeling from Bill now.
“If it makes you feel any better,” Bill reported, “Sookie did not want to take my blood at first. She was unconscious, but she still rejected it. I had to try several times before she took it. Herveaux can attest to this.”
I contemplated the information. It did make me feel better, but I didn’t admit that to Bill. We were not that good of bosom buddies.
“It does not matter now,” I said through pursed lips. “The infusion of your blood may have confused her, but let’s face it, she was never one to be ruled by our influence. Her choice was her own.”
“Still—,” Bill said in a tone that was actually sorry without being pitying, “her leaving—it must have been even more difficult for you since you’d bonded with her.”
“Yes,” I answered simply.
There were a few minutes of silence between us as the car continued to carry us to our fate.
“So do I,” I barely sounded, though Bill could surely hear me. “But she wants neither of us, and now it is immaterial anyway. You and I will likely be dead soon.”
“True,” Bill agreed.
“But if I die, I will admit that hers will be the face that I will cling to as I go to my final death,” I acknowledged, quietly.
“Agreed,” Bill said. He sighed and then lightened his tone. “It is too bad that neither one of us is capable of sharing.”
I chuckled. “Nor is she.”
Bill nodded. “What do you think will happen?”
I shrugged. “Who knows? I still have a few friends in high places.”
I did have friends in high places, and seeing the back of that brunette head reminded me of one of the most important: Nora.
Nora was my vampire sister, though I was almost certain that no one in the Authority knew that. They all guarded the identities of their makers and progeny closely so that nothing or no one could be held against them. Plus, part of the ritual of joining the Authority was severing the bonds to one’s maker—through magic—so that he or she could no longer command the member to do anything.
Nora was younger than I was by almost half a millennium. At my request, Godric had turned her in England in 1665. She’d been one of Charles II’s mistresses, but she’d also been a healer at heart, and she’d defied the king by trying to help those infected with the Black Plague. She’d caught it. At the time, I’d admired her spirit, but I’d not felt pulled to turn her; thus, I’d asked Godric to give her immortality.
He’d done it for me. But he’d also wanted a new child, for—by then—I was venturing out on my own more and more. And, most importantly, he’d felt “the pull” towards Nora.
After Nora’s turning, I’d stayed in England, while Godric had taken his new child away from her homeland in order to help her to adjust to her new life. Thus, I hadn’t seen Nora again until about thirty years later when Godric and Nora had been traveling in Asia. I happened to be there as well—learning new techniques of the sword from Chow’s maker, Kenshin.
As I’d gotten to know my “sister,” we had become quite close. It wasn’t just that we’d had sex either. Of course, we had. She was beautiful, and I was a vampire, after all, and vampires loved sex.
No. We had behaved mostly like siblings from the word “go,” squabbling to the point that Godric had soon—and often—ordered us to different countries. And then to different continents.
We’d never been able to stay around each other for more than a week or two without a big dust-up, but that week or two had often been full of some lovely fucking. In addition, we’d had a lot of fun together. And, despite our squabbles, I trusted her with my life, and I could count how many humans and vampires I’d truly trusted over my long lifetime on one hand. And I had my thumb left over.
Strangely enough, the vampire lying next to me in the trunk might be added to that short list soon. Bill had saved my life even though it would have likely benefitted him to see me dead. More importantly, I felt that Bill would have my back during a battle. And that kind of thing went a long way toward establishing trust.
Yes—I trusted Nora. And I knew that she would help me out of my current clusterfuck if she could—just as I would always help her if she needed it.
I closed my eyes and tried to allow a memory of Nora to fill me. I was certain that if it could, I would be halfway to forgetting—at least for a moment—the heart carnage left in the wake of Hurricane Sookie.
But, unfortunately, my memories of Nora didn’t compare with my thoughts of Sookie Stackhouse.
Nora―I loved like a vampire sister. She was what humans might call a friend with benefits. First and foremost, we shared Godric’s blood. Being her lover had always felt fucking amazing, but those feelings had never evolved into romantic “love.” In fact, Nora was one of the few individuals that I might actually talk to about my feelings for a certain blond telepathic fairy-human. Gods know, throughout the years, I’d had to listen to Nora drone on and on about the paramours she’d had—even if our more recent conversations had all been phone calls or emails.
But in the end, no matter how nice it felt to fuck Nora, I’d never loved her like I loved Sookie; I’d never loved anyone like that. Not my human wife. Not Godric. Not Pam.
Sookie—I had wanted to spend at least one lifetime with, hopefully more if I could have talked her into being turned. I would have also done whatever she asked in order to get that “one” life. I would have remained faithful to her. I would have fed from no others—as long as she was letting me feed from her. I would have given her all that was mine. I would have made everyone who owed me fealty bow before her. I would have placed her above—and before—all others.
I’d already put her before Pam and even before myself. Outside of the necromancer’s shop, I had been willing to die so that Sookie might live. Of course that fact pissed me the fuck off, but it was still a fact. And I’d not hesitated to make that deal with Marnie or Antonia or whoever the fuck she’d been at the time.
Yes—when I’d said that I’d given myself to Sookie completely, I had spoken the truth.
I belonged to her in a fundamental way that would—could—never be severed.
Like a welder, she’d thawed and then fused together the left-over pieces of my dead heart with the sun of her very being. And then—instead of cherishing what she had created—she’d shattered it into even more pieces than before.
But I could now remember it being whole. And—like a V-addict craving blood—I would always want that again.
I felt heat in my eyes, but I angrily held onto the tears that threatened to fall. I wasn’t going to cry for Sookie Stackhouse—especially not in front of Bill Compton.
I loved and hated my bonded one so fucking much. I closed my eyes tightly and my mind traveled to the woods near her home—to the stream that had filled my senses with its song as I’d filled my woman with my cock. She’d felt so fucking right to me as we’d joined. We had belonged to each other in that moment—and in the many moments that had followed it.
But she’d been right about what she’d said the very next night.
Nothing lasts forever.
“What?” I snapped a little as I was drawn out of my daydream—drawn out of Sookie yet again.
“Um—are you sure that you don’t have something to tell me?” Bill asked with a smirk.
I assessed myself and sure enough, I had a huge Sookie-induced erection. “Fuck!” I said in frustration.
“No thanks,” Bill quipped.
I shoved Bill lightly—just enough so that his skin would barely meet the silver.
“Congratulations,” Bill said, a mixture of sarcasm and perhaps envy in his tone.
“What for?” I asked.
“You seem to have been blessed in the size department,” he bantered.
“Oh—you know what they say, Bill?” I said, having recovered from my musings about Sookie. I was genuinely thankful to Bill in that moment for taking my mind off of her.
“What’s that?” Bill asked.
“It’s not the size that matters.”
Bill’s eyebrow quirked.
“And that is why I have spent a thousand years perfecting how to use this thing,” I smirked.
“How nice for you,” Bill deadpanned.
“Indeed,” I answered.
“I still don’t want to fuck you, Eric,” Bill joked.
From the front of the car, we heard the volume being turned up on the radio. My smirk grew. “But they’re playing our song.”
Bill rolled his eyes and then grew serious. “Do you think they might just be bringing us in for questioning? I mean—wouldn’t we be dead already . . . ?”
I cut him off, “Have you ever heard of a vampire being hauled in by the Authority and then live to talk about it?”
Bill turned and looked at me. His eyes held the fear that only one so young could have about death. But then his eyes moved past me to take in something behind me in the trunk.
Curious, I followed his gaze. It was an umbrella—a nice sturdy one—and immediately, I knew what Bill was thinking. I began to reach back for the object, inching my way toward it while trying to avoid the silver.
I contemplated. The risks were great, but if Bill’s idea worked, then we would have to face only two vampires―unless there was a pursuing vehicle. But I didn’t think there was. Either way, it would be far fewer than we would have to deal with once we reached our destination. That was for goddamned sure!
And we would have the element of surprise on our side too. But most importantly, we were now well away from Bon Temps—and Sookie.
I grabbed the umbrella, and Bill and I maneuvered it into position before thrusting it into the gas tank, which—thankfully—was only about a third of the way full at this point.
“All right. All right. Now we just need some fire,” I said as Bill snapped the wooden handle into kindling. The fire would be easy enough to create.
Bill had a piece of metal in his shoulder, but it was easily taken care of.
“Come. We’ve gotta go,” I said.
Of course, Bill wasn’t technically my king anymore, so I didn’t feel the need to obey him.
In fact, I felt like I was the commander in that moment. It reminded me of my days as a Viking—when I was a leader of men. And I’d never left a comrade behind—just as my men had not left me behind when I was dying my human death. I’d not had many comrades since I’d become a vampire, but I’d never abandoned one of them in times of danger either—until the day that Godric had ordered me to leave the basement of the Fellowship church. That thought made me angry, and I used that emotion to get Bill to his feet.
I snarled, “I’m not leaving you here! Let’s go.”
As we were rising, a voice came from behind us. “Who wants to die first?” Authority flunky #1 asked.
Nora spoke, “You―Hayes. You die first.”
Yep—I thought to myself—that was fucking sexy!
Even though he had no idea who the vampiress in front of him was, I could tell that Bill was thinking the same thing.
We were vampires, after all. Vampires in love with a fairy—sure—but vampires nonetheless.
And a blood-covered beautiful woman? Yep—I was pretty certain that both Bill and I wanted to fuck her in that moment.
“Nora,” I said.