Chapter 11: Secrets Stolen

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2004

APPROXIMATELY THREE MONTHS LATER

SOOKIE POV

I’d finally found the time and the courage to go to New Orleans to deal with “family business.”

I’d told Life 2’s Eric about Hunter on the second and last night I’d seen him—the night of the “debriefing.”

But Hunter had been on both of our “lists.”

It wasn’t that I didn’t trust Eric. I did trust him—despite the fact that he’d obviously decided that a life without me in it would be better for him.

I really couldn’t blame him.

Plus, Eric was bound to be busy!

After all, I’d told him about everything I could imagine would help him: from Longshadow and Charles Twining; from Bill’s database to Peter Threadgill’s treachery; from Godfrey in Dallas to Hallow the witch; from de Castro and Madden to the Maenad; from Rhodes to Hurricane Katrina; from Freyda to Appius and Alexei. I supposed that I’d given him so much information that I’d made myself obsolete.

In my long night with Life 2’s Eric, I’d also told him many things that would certainly turn him off to anything having to do with me.

Near-final-death experiences. A lot of them.

Emotions that I doubted any Eric had ever wanted—or would ever want.

I was a trouble-making and trouble-attracting part-Fae. And I figured all Erics would know better than to get involved with one of those.

In his defense, the Eric from Life 1 hadn’t known what I was until he already had feelings for me.

Life 2’s Eric had been afforded a very different set of variables to work with.

And—as for me? I’d already accepted the fact that a life without Eric was likely the price I would have to pay in order to keep the people around me safe.

The very Sunday after I’d started Life 2, the minister at church had talked about the value of true penance for one’s sins. He’d said that a penance was sometimes imposed by society, sometimes by the church, or sometimes by God. But, just as likely, it was taken up voluntarily by an individual as an atonement for sin and error. I thought about all of my mistakes and shortcomings in Life 1 and decided that my penance would be not contacting Eric.

Even by the end of Life 1, I’d known that I didn’t deserve him. I thought about all that he’d sacrificed for me—including a century of his freedom. I just couldn’t allow for Life 2’s Eric to suffer or forfeit anything for me!

Especially not his freedom.

No—I’d be damned if Eric suffered in Life 2 because of me!

And—to ensure that didn’t happen—I needed to stay away from him.

If he chose me—chose to come to me—I knew that I wouldn’t be able to resist him. But—with each day—it seemed less and less likely that Life 2’s Eric wanted to be anywhere near me.

Penance: The minister had stated that it wasn’t easy, but it was sometimes necessary.

Also necessary was for me to try to embrace Life 2—to honor the Eric who had given it to me.

To honor Gran.

To honor everyone who had been lost in my first life.

And—though it was easier said than done—to honor myself.

So I’d been living as well as I could.

I’d been working six days a week (since Arlene still couldn’t be completely relied upon because of the René thing); however, remembering how Eric had believed that I could be so much more than a waitress, I had “continued” studying for the SAT, which I had taken in August.

I was just glad that I’d retained my knowledge from Life 1.

I’d just gotten my results, and I’d done well—considering the many minds in the testing center who’d seemingly been conspiring to give me the wrong answers. Thankfully, Eric’s blood was still in my system—still bolstering my shields.

Since I’d learned that my scores would qualify me for a lot of universities, I’d begun applying for admittance and financial aid for various online programs—because I wanted to begin my classes in the spring semester. Thankfully, there were college degrees that could be gotten totally online nowadays! And Gran felt great pride when I talked about getting an Accounting degree. Given the work I’d done at Merlotte’s in Life 1, I didn’t doubt that I was capable of bookkeeping. I just wondered if anyone would give me a job in it once I was done with school.

Perhaps irresponsibly, I’d decided to hope for the best and go for my degree—come what may.

Meanwhile, I’d been saving up all the tips that I could and planned to bet on the World Series. My first project after winning would be funding a new driveway and any part of my college expenses loans wouldn’t cover.

Oh—and I planned to save some of my winnings to bet on the Super Bowl too. I’d used my telepathy to find a reputable bookie. There were plenty who worked in the area, given the fact that the casinos on the Mississippi and in the Gulf were full of people wanting to gamble on anything they could.

Of course, I had insider information—not that anyone would ever know about that.

Being a waitress in a bar in Life 1 had been fruitful; I knew all the results of all the major sporting events. The Red Socks were going to make me a fortune when they swept the Cardinals—or, at least, as much of a fortune as my meagre savings could earn.

And then the Patriots were going to win me more money when they beat the Eagles in February—just in time for property taxes.

“A victimless crime,” I told myself. “And a new paint job that Gran would be proud of,” I added with surety.

Unfortunately, dealing with the Hadley situation was more difficult than any driveway treatment or new paint job or even new roof.

To tell Gran or not to tell Gran about Hadley being alive—and then undead since she was due to become a vampire any day—those were the questions.

In the end, I’d decided not to tell Gran. After all, Hadley hadn’t asked Sophie-Anne to find her family. She’d told her queen about her “odd” cousin in order to curry favor.

If Hadley ever decided to dial Gran’s number—a number which had belonged to Gran my whole life (and a number that was listed in the fucking phone book!)—I would support any relationship Gran wanted with my wayward cousin. But—until then—I knew that telling Gran would mean initiating relationships with people we shouldn’t know about.

Questions would be asked.

My telepathy might be discovered.

And people would likely start dying because of it.

Because of me.

As my deciding factor, I’d recalled Hadley’s Will from Life 1. She hadn’t left her things to Gran or to Aunt Linda, who had been alive when she’d left our family in her wake. No—she’d left her “estate” to me—specifically—meaning that she must have known enough about our family to recognize that her mother and Gran were both gone. But she’d never bothered to pay her respects to either of them.

Still—the prospect of Hadley dying when I could prevent it was difficult to bear. And Hadley’s death at Waldo’s hands wasn’t something I figured Eric would prioritize acting upon—though he’d put it on his list. I needed to make sure. Plus, there was Hunter to consider.

That is how I found myself driving to New Orleans—praying to God that my car would last the trip. Of course, I’d used my winnings from the few regular season football games that I could clearly remember to take my yellow eye-sore to Tray Dawson for a seeing-to, and “she” was running better than ever. But “she” still complained at any speed over 55 miles per hour.

Oh well. I was used to getting passed—left behind.

I shook myself from that thought and once again second-guessed the lie I’d told Gran to explain my two-day trip to New Orleans.

I had told her that I was meeting with Eric for a job. It was a cruel lie—given the amount of hope that the invocation of Eric’s name had brought to her. But it was a necessary lie.

After all, I had to tell her a reason for me going to New Orleans.

I had no friends there.

And I wouldn’t vacation without Gran!

Not that I’d ever vacationed.

Thus, the trip had to be about business, and Eric’s was the only name I could come up with when telling Gran who would hire me for anything beyond waitressing.

Of course, Eric wasn’t really meeting me in the Big Easy. In fact, he hadn’t contacted me in any way since the last time I saw him.

However, I could no longer wait. My conscious compelled me to make sure that Hadley was warned about Waldo. And I needed to—somehow—look in on Hunter.

Plus—with every passing day—a weight pushed upon me: Niall. I needed to ensure that he never contacted me.

And the only answer I could come up with for any of these issues was Desmond Cataliades.

Thus, I’d dialed the phone number he’d had me memorize in Life 1, and I’d made an appointment with him.

And then I’d sent Eric a letter, asking him to corroborate my “alibi” if Gran asked—though I doubted that Eric would get the letter until I was already back in Bon Temps.

In truth, I’d thought about calling the demon lawyer about a thousand times. After all, he’d helped me in Life 1. But it was probable that he didn’t know about my telepathy in Life 2 because Hadley’s stories about me had never been confirmed by Bill.

Hell—I didn’t even know if Hadley was a vampire yet in Life 2!

Life 1’s Hadley hadn’t known about Hunter’s ability. Life 1’s Remy had told me that the last time she’d contacted him was when Hunter was only a few months old—well before the little boy could talk.

And betray his “gift.”

However, Hadley was a wildcard in Life 2.

Once the queen had been “disappointed” in not getting a telepath, how had things changed for my cousin? Had she been killed? Had she been turned “early?” Had she been punished somehow? Would she actually decide to be a mother to her child in Life 2?

I didn’t like Hadley being a variable. I didn’t like that she might eventually recognize Hunter’s telepathy in Life 2. I didn’t doubt that she’d tell the queen if she did.

Of course—in Life 1, it had been me who had put Hunter onto the Supernatural radar when I’d asked Niall to help me find Remy Savoy. But it had been Copley Carmichael—of all people—who had mentioned knowing Hadley’s ex and child! Before that, I’d had no idea about Hunter! And Copley’s involvement couldn’t be a “good” sign.

Granted, so much was different in Life 2—already. Thus, the fact that Copely knew about the ex-husband and child of a person who’d rented an apartment from Amelia likely wouldn’t matter to him at all—because I wasn’t going to enter his life this time around. But I still didn’t like the fact that Copley had found Remy so “interesting” in Life 1—that he’d seemingly kept better track of Hunter and Remy than Hadley had!

Yes! Something had to be done to protect the little boy—even if I couldn’t do it directly.


I checked into the Holiday Inn.

Room 324.

Officially, it was my “first” hotel room since Life 2 me hadn’t stayed in the hotel in Dallas or Rhodes.

I figured that—if Life 2 me was a virgin—then other things Life 1 me had done with my body didn’t much count either. Moreover, neither Life 1 me nor Life 2 me had ever booked her—my—own hotel room before. So that was new no matter what!

I decided to order room service instead of going out to dinner on the first night of my stay. No need to tempt fate.

Given my luck, I’d run headlong into Andre on Bourbon Street!

I ate poached salmon and fried potatoes, and I turned in early, though I was too anxious to sleep comfortably.


Thankfully, my name had been enough to get me a meeting with Desmond Cataliades—and an escort to his office—and I was ready at 9:00 a.m. when Gladiola knocked. I spent a moment adding her to the list of “alive” people who’d died in Life 1. Gladiola was so full of life and cheer that I found myself smiling widely at her the whole time she escorted me to her uncle’s office—though I couldn’t understand a word she said since she talked so quickly!

Likely, she thought I was crazy as I grinned at her.

But such a thought wouldn’t be the first time. And her mind stayed like static to me. I was grateful for that.

“Miss Stackhouse,” Mr. Cataliades greeted me, before leading me into his office and to a comfortable chair.

Coffee was offered and accepted, and as the “round” fellow fixed me a cup, I took him in.

I recalled that I’d interacted with him with almost indifference when I’d seen him the last time in Life 1—even though he’d given me choices that not even Niall was willing to give. I should have told him “thank you”—at the very least.

Now—in the middle of Life 2—I wanted to hug him. But he didn’t know me—or anything about me—beyond my name.

However, as soon as he sat down, I remedied that. Apart from Eric, he was the only person I knew deserved the truth.

“I am a time-traveler and a telepath—because of you,” I told the demon before he’d even made his rotund body comfortable.

Mr. Cataliades said nothing—in fact, he hardly moved a muscle—as I told him about his part in my “reincarnation.”

After I was done with my explanation and my requests regarding Hadley, Hunter, and Niall, I waited for the demon lawyer to speak—even as I became more and more concerned that he’d be calling the people with the straightjackets to come and get me.

But he didn’t.

“You want me to threaten Niall, the Prince of the Sky Fae?” he opened—when he finally did speak.

“Um—no. But yes. Uh—I just wanna make sure that Niall never contacts me. Can you help me with that?” I asked.

Mr. Cataliades frowned. “Claudine hasn’t come to you? Not like before?”

“No,” I whispered. Not contacting her had been difficult, but I’d thought it was for the best.

“Given the fact that no connection has been made—perhaps none will be,” he suggested.

“But what if it is?” I asked, fearing the prospect of Gran being home alone when Neave and Lochlan appeared.

Mr. Cataliades contemplated for a while, seeming to run several scenarios through his head, even as he dabbed his brow and neck with a handkerchief over and over again.

“I think that I can persuade Niall not to approach you,” the demon lawyer finally said.

I nodded, allowing him to see my hope and gratefulness. But I didn’t ask him “how” he planned to accomplish his goal. I was pretty sure I didn’t want to know. “What about Hadley? Hunter?” I asked.

“I am Hadley’s attorney, and I can tell you that Adele Stackhouse is her beneficiary.”

“Good—that’s good,” I said.

“And Waldo won’t be an issue.”

“He won’t?” I asked.

“Waldo died two months ago,” the demon stated.

“How?” I asked.

“No one knows,” he responded.

An image of Eric flew into my mind.

“Is Hadley a vampire yet?” I asked.

“Yes. Shortly after Waldo died. It was a few days before the queen turned her that I was called in to do a Will for Hadley.”

I was silent for a moment. “What about Hunter?”

“Hadley has nothing to do with him. She wants nothing to do with him. In fact, she didn’t even tell me about him. When I was drawing up her Will, I “heard” about

Remy and Hunter from Hadley’s head. The image of the child was of an infant. She plans never to see the boy again because she doesn’t want to complicate things with the queen, who doesn’t let her talk about her family anymore.”

“That’s good,” I whispered.

“I figured that—like you—Hunter was well-removed from the possibility of inheriting the spark, so I haven’t visited him. Now that I know he has the spark and—therefore—my ability, I will see to him,” he said.

“How? How will you see to him?” I asked.

“I can teach him how to control his telepathy,” the demon said. “I could teach you, too.”

“Better that I never have contact with you again,” I said firmly. “But—please—do help Hunter if it can keep him secret.”

“You don’t want help?” he asked with a frown.

I shook my head. “The queen currently believes me to be without an ability, but if it became known that I was visiting with you or that you were visiting me, she might wonder why. Uh—are you sure the queen doesn’t know about Hunter?”

The demon lawyer frowned. “I don’t think so, but I will find out for sure. If she knows, I will hide him. If not—based upon what you told me—I will act to keep his ability a secret from her.”

I smiled. “Thank you. Um—please—let me know if I can help. But—uh—for now I’m afraid to . . . .” My voice trailed off.

“Afraid to?” he probed.

“Afraid to have anything to do with Hunter,” I said firmly. “I’m afraid to have anything else to do with you either, Mr. Cataliades. I’m sorry, but one meeting might be explained. Um—however, if I came here again—uh—and I were seen . . . .”

He smiled at me kindly. “I understand. And I am glad that I was able to help you find this new life,” he said. “I’m sorry I failed you in the other one.”

I shook my head and brushed away a tear. “Just—please—keep Hunter safe. And keep Niall away from both of us if you can.”

“I swear that I will do my best,” he said sincerely.

I got up to leave.

“You know—you look like him. Your eyes. Your chin,” he whispered.

“Fintan,” I sighed. “I haven’t even gotten up the courage to ask Gran about him yet—even though I’ve found the cluviel dor—from this life,” I said significantly. “Do you think it will work?”

He shrugged. “I don’t see why it wouldn’t. Everything seems to have been reset.”

I looked at him seriously. “If Hunter’s ever in danger, call me. I’ll use it on him. Otherwise, I think it’s best that he never knows me, and that means that Gran can’t know him.” I let out a sob—so overwhelmed by my guilt of keeping Hunter away from Gran so that he could be kept away from me. Rationally, I knew that it was Life 2’s Hadley that had kept herself and Hunter from Gran, but in that moment, I felt completely responsible for the secret.

“Just—uh—make sure that Hunter knows he’s not alone,” I whispered, wiping away tears as I spoke. “Let him know that he’s not the only telepath in the world. And—if you think he needs,” I paused, “love—please tell me. I—uh—I’ve tried to do what I can to stay out of people’s lives since I was like Typhoid Mary in Life 1, but I don’t want Hunter to have to be alone. If he needs,” I paused again to let out a sob, “Gran, let me know.”

“And what would you do then?” the demon asked me.

“Go away, of course,” I said quickly. “He could be with Gran. She would love him.”

“But . . . .”

I interrupted him with the raising of my hand. “The only reason I haven’t disappeared already is that—if I do—it might draw attention to everyone I love. In fact, I’m doin’ my level best to convince everyone—even my brother—that I never really could read minds. But Hunter—well—we barely knew each other before, and he mainly just wanted someone to help him to not feel so very alone. And—uh—Remy is a good man. He’ll be even better once Hunter’s gettin’ help, and this time, that’s gonna happen so much sooner!”

Mr. Cataliades looked like he was going to argue with me for a moment, but he didn’t. Instead, he spoke to me in his lawyerly voice. I appreciated that.

“For now, Hadley is fine; she is the queen’s favored pet. Now that I’m aware of Hunter, I will begin working with him right away. And I will contact you if the cluviel dor is needed for him. You may rest assured.”

I felt about a thousand pounds lighter as I nodded to him. “Thank you. Thank you so much,” I whispered through my emotions.

“I failed you during your first life,” he said. “I won’t fail Hunter this time. I swear it.”

I was grateful for Mr. Cataliades’s words.

“Can I do anything else—for you?” he asked.

“Just keep Niall away from me and from Hunter,” I said.


A/N: Hello all! Just FYI, I revised a significant amount of this after Kleannhouse saw it, so if there are errors, I’m sure that they are mine.

Okay—so I know what you are thinking: That Sookie is screwing up Life 2 because she’s not with Eric. But as several of you have pointed out, Eric and Sookie wouldn’t be themselves if they were good at communicating with each other. Given what happened to her in Life 1, I think that Life 2 Sookie has done whatever she could do avoid the Supernatural, which—in some ways—is an existential dilemma for her. She IS a Supernatural person. And she didn’t embrace that in Life 1 either. She’s trying to keep everyone safe, so she can’t embrace it in Life 2 either.

In a lot of ways, she left her fate up to Eric this time. She told him everything and put the ball in his court. She exchanged blood with him. He would have been able to tell how she felt about him; plus, she told him how she felt. (The “I love you.”) She left the choice up to Eric. I think if he would have come back, she would have moved cautiously into the Supe world, though I also believe she would have tried to keep her telepathy a secret. She would have trusted Eric with the secret and her safety.

Yes, she could get help with her telepathy from Mr. Cataliades, but what would interacting with him mean? And she didn’t exactly want to initiate contact with the fairies. Yes—Claudine would have helped her, but book Sookie had no “light-shooting” power. She had a spark and telepathy, but nothing else “extra.” So initiating with Claudine would have opened the can of worms she’s trying to keep shut.

But that leaves her living a “normal” life as an “abnormal” person. And that leaves her wanting to be with Eric, but not going to him because she doesn’t think Eric 2 wants her like that. So—yep—the more things change, the more they stay the same.

And that’s the angst.

Expect more time jumps. They are another reason for the story’s title.

I hope you are still liking this piece.

Kat

Thanks to Seph and Kleannhouse as always!


 

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38 thoughts on “Chapter 11: Secrets Stolen

  1. Wow. What a risk heading to New Orleans. I have a feeling her trip to the big easy isn’t over yet! Can’t wait for more!

  2. Sookie’s way of doing things this time around is smart. She’s trying to keep all those dominoes from falling, although I expect they will in time anyway. If she were to do one thing from before, it could set them all in motion and that’s the last thing she wants. On the other hand, once she gets all the other things in place, what then? As much as she loves Eric, will she be able to keep him safe and free? She’s in a very tough position right now. Poor kid. Terrific chapter & I can’t wait for tomorrow!

  3. a great chapter as usual and yes i noticed the add-ons. i think she is destined to walk the lonely path for a awhile, will it be all sun and roses?, probably not. she may not want to be in the supernatural world but she will always be attached to it. i think she is being true when she is looking out for Hunter’s happiness before her own. like in Life 1 she still has growing up to do. and as for Eric, that is a double edged sword because if he wanted her he knows how to get to her(plus it seems he is working on his list) but i also realize why she is staying out of his life. life can be a royal pain in the ass and we don’t always get what we want and possibly deserve. KY

  4. Wow. She really took that sermon to heart. I’m totally looking forward to Eric’s POV. I’m dying to know what he’s been up to and what changes he’s managed to affect. Especially the Appius problem. That would require an amazing plan. Thanks for the daily posts.
    Blessings

  5. Oh my god leaving us with some heavy thinking with your A/N there. But then I got to thinking, maybe Eric is away getting rid of the biggest threats before he gets back in touch with Sookie so they can be safe to be together. That would me first and foremost making sure is despicable Maker Appius has met his final death before any contracts can be signed. Then worrying about QSA and DeCastro. any way on pins and needles cant wait for the next update.

  6. Shoooo – that chapter made me cry! What a heartbreaking place Sookie has found herself in – she is selflessly sacrificing much to keep everyone she loves safe. 😭

  7. *Sighs* I can’t blame Sookie at all for the way she’s handling things in life 2, but it makes me sad. She’s still rejecting part of herself by trying to be “normal”. She’s staying away from Eric because she thinks it’s best for him and I’m pretty sure that Eric is staying away from her because he thinks it’s best for her. *Sighs again.*

    I hope we’re going to see an Eric POV next, I’m dying to know what’s going in his head and what he’s been up to for the last three months. I have to say I’m not looking forward to more time jumps as I’m assuming that probably means more time that these two are going to be apart. I swear sometimes I just want to knock their skulls together! Lol.

    I’m glad she told Mr. C everything, it’s clearly a good idea to have him in your corner and he will obviously look out for her after everything he did for her in Life 1.

  8. I am loving this story. Thanks for another update so soon. I feel so bad for Life 2 Sookie. She is isolating herself so much and I get why, but I just wish she would have taken Mr. C’s help.

  9. Second chances. I don’t think Eric is really trying to stay away from Sookie, I think he’s trying to repair, prevent and prepare on his end. Now that Sookie got the Cataliades thing out of the way, she needs to go home and stay out of the limelight.

  10. I trying to understand her need to keep everybody safe but my heart is aching for Sookie right now,she is so alone…
    I’m happy that she is considering getting herself an accounting degree!
    As for Eric,I’m wondering what is he doing!?
    Are there any chances to get a chapter with his POV?
    Jackie69
    P.S. I’m so in love with this story!

  11. So basically, Sookie thinks that her penance for this life is to be without Eric? Foolish girl, you don’t always have to pay a penance. Sheesh, like her life hasn’t been meet with enough heartache.I mean she’s an outcast, and has been abused by her uncle. Not to mention , that the one person she feels, that loves her ,has been lyging to her ,all the while. I mean, her grandmother might be ashamed for having an affair. But, really, how ashamed can a person be, to not only have an affair once, but twice. I mean come on, Gran has seen Sookie have a hard time navigating through life, not knowing why she’s different and feeling alone. I can’t really understand her keeping this from her. On other hand Sookie hesitancy,to broach the subject is much like her dealings with Eric. She doesn’t know how confront those she loves. She’s fierce in every way, but that.I hope the letter Sookie sent Eric will be the first move of communication between them. I have the feeling that their both leaving the ball in each other’s court. Knowing Sookie, she believes that Eric while being Eric,would come and be with her if he really wanted to. While Eric having so many feelings for Sookie,some he probably never had is having a diffulct time knowing what to do. Can’t wait for more tomorrow. 🙂

  12. It looks like Sookie’s actions have helped already. It’s nice that Eric took care of Waldo. There are a number of good lives that are hopefully being saved, including Claudine. I wonder if Eric is trying to take care of his own future before contacting Sookie, or if he thinks she would rather be left alone. Excellent chapter.

  13. Really loving the daily updates.. I think if Eric was around too much it would only draw others to her. I hate to think they will always be apart. Just hope Eric is working through his list, since we saw Waldo was taken care of. The worst one will be his maker before he gets to Freyda. Don’t want that happening again.
    I wish Hunter could be a part of Sookie and Gran’s life. Shes doing so much to protect everyone she loves but have a feeling it could all backfire on her. Can’t wait to see what happens in tomorrows update.. Loving your story..

  14. I like that her studies were not wasted. Poor Sookie she is making a lonely world for herself. Hopefully Gran will stay healthy and alive, as she is keeping away from everyone else. Still love your story, but you are making me greedy. Now I wish for more than one update per day!

  15. I think that Eric is in the same place as Sookie – not wanting to “ruin” her second chance. Can’t wait for the next installment!

  16. I get what Sookie is doing. Staying away from Eric. But I think Eric might be staying away from her because he thinks this is what SHE WANTS. Which is totally wrong. He better stop that thinking soon and go to her.
    Or Sookie needs to call him. Well one of them better call. After all she’s putting everyone before her, again. Will Sookie ever get to be happy?
    I am glad she’s going for a degree. She should work for Eric.. Also I love that she’s making some money on bets! Good for her.

  17. I think Eric is working his list (Waldo). I can’t wait to hear what all he has been up too. He had a lot to change, especially when it comes to his maker. Sookie is always trying to protect others and she never seems to have any faith in herself, but at least she is thinking things through before she acts. Of coarse these two were never good at communication so Sookie is just guessing at what she should do with life #2. Eric giving her some input on his master plan would have been a little more than helpful. Can’t wait for the next chapter.

  18. Loving this story so VERY thankful for the daily updates!!! It’s hard to blame Sookie being over cautious (to the point of depriving herself from so much…. Nearly of living at all one could say) in Life2 as Life1 was so traumatic (thank CH for that (not) as she really put Sookie through a lot more pain and suffering that was warranted IMO). … This story does pick up by adding more suffering and loss but immediately providing a path to a better life (Life2) so huge improvement already… I bet Eric is just busy dealing with his list of jobs….

  19. The thing I keep holding onto is that Eric wished for her to be safe and HAPPY . Right now she is not happy . I guess we have the conference coming up. I’m curious about Eric and what he has been doing.

  20. Sookie is trying so hard to keep everyone safe this time around. I do hope Eric is just busy and will come to her at some point. Sookie needs some love too!

  21. I have a rock in the pit of my stomach and it’s not fun. Something tells me she’s about to screw something up in a major way with the smallest of things. Methinks the betting isn’t such a good idea. Who knows who won that in Life 1. Maybe they needed it desperately also and she’s now screwed them. I dunno, something is off and it worries me!

  22. This is great. I love that you’ve forced Sookie to evolve mentally. To slow down her emotions, not focus on the things that don’t matter, but rather see the bigger picture. It’s great. Great, awesome, super, all that jazz!

  23. I have mixed feelings. I am glad she has thought through what she is doing, and how she can avoid the mistakes of life 1. On the other hand, it feels like a pendulum that has swung back as far in the other direction as possible. Perhaps a normal reaction. I would like to see her find a balance and also recognize that she is not just human. Accepting who we are is kind of important. Of course she is waiting for Eric to make the next move, and I get that too. I was a bit sad about the interaction between her and Dr. C., but it’s all part of her effort to protect everyone by islolating herself.
    We need a viking vampire sex god to show up…
    And just in case I’m not being clear, I love this story.

  24. Sookie would not be Sookie if she didn’t try to fix things in her own way. Honestly, I hope she wins her bets and fixes Gran’s house and goes to school to get her degree. I don’t agree that she should be somehow punished for having this information and using it to her advantage. She deserves a break financially because the pride she had in Life 1 came along in Life 2. My only concern is that in making such concentrated efforts to “avoid the spotlight” she may be putting herself right in the middle of it in the supe world. I hope she can get past that “Eric would be better off without me” mindset because she has been given such an incredible opportunity to overcome it. Oh, I did get misty eyed over Hunter. 😦
    I trust you. And, I still love your story.

  25. I think that Eric and Sookie are doing the best things right now. I keep remembering that Appius started working on making Eric a slave to Freyda when he felt Eric finally be happy. So Eric needs to be determined and focused but not happy yet. If he wants any chance at taking out his maker. I understand Sookie trying to stay off of every ones radar. If every one thinks she is just a human she can keep every one safe. I do worry because Sam and Trey are supes. Thank you again and see you tomorrow.

  26. Another great chapter. I do so love this story.
    Sookie breaks my heart blaming herself for everything that went wrong in Life 1.
    Smart girl for contacting Mr C and I just knew that Eric’s absence from her life was because he is ‘taking care of business’. He wished for time to ensure her safety and happiness and that is just what he is doing, using his time well to plot and plan to ensure a better future for both of them.
    I am also looking forward to hearing the Viking’s thoughts.

  27. I’m on them ‘Eric is busy’ wagon. Desireecarbenell said it. Appius! One of their biggest hurdles, and he only came into play because Eric became so very happy. Not that Eric doesn’t have plenty of other things to sort out too. Which, as Waldo is gone, he is obviously working on them. And considering how hard Sookie is working to stay out of the limelight, there isnt much point in visiting her until it is safe.

    We know Eric is shrewd.
    We know Eric is a planner and is methodical.
    We know Eric is high-handed.
    We know Eric takes actions he deems are the best for security reasons, without discussing those actions with others. (Btw, someone should give him an English dictionary as a present. One specific page tabbed, and one word with definition high-lighted : Communication…. Just a thought lol)
    We also know that this Eric DOES give a damn! 😉 He said so!!!
    This Rhett, I mean Eric, is coming back 🙂

  28. I don’t think Eric has forgotten or doesn’t want to see Sookie. She said herself that he had a more substantial list than she did. Perhaps they will meet soon to work on the list that needs the both of them to fix things for the better.

  29. Eric has a tough list to work, and we know he wouldn’t perceive the passage of a few months the same way Sookie would (which she should also realize). I’m not worried. 😁

  30. Oddly even tho I’m Big angst baby it’s not even getting to me at this point. In my head while Sookies ‘clearing her plate’ of known issues I’m betting Eric is also. He’s always been a man of action – and she’s armed him well! His (and Sookies) biggest threats: De Castro/Madden, Niall and biggest of all Appius(!) are not easy peasy quickie problems to sweep away. The Eric we’ve always heard about having ‘plans on top of plans’ is likely plotting and planning his own dominos of destruction. I think – if I’m not reading too much into it- was hinted to in the “mysterious” disappearance of Waldo. My impression Eric’s ‘absence’ is him ‘ ‘prioritizing’ threats, he’s made quick work of those that will/could impact Sookies life that he can get out of the way so he can focus on the BIG threats to them both – so he can come back – to her/ as ‘free & clear’ as possible. And of course of basing that theory on you always giving us a sweet Sookie & Eric package! 😍

  31. I also think, Eric has a full list to working out and then he will come to Sookie and they will live HEA.
    But untill then…..

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