The characters of the Southern Vampire Mysteries belong to Miss Charlaine Harris. No infringement on my part is intended. The characters on True Blood belong to Mr. Alan Ball. No infringement on my part is intended.
I have no BETA, editor, or other such charming person. All mistakes are my own.
This story is rated M
Pamela had spent the last hour running a facial recognition program, searching for the name of the Were who had gone into the bar and was doing dirty deeds on behalf of the witches.
Now she was in her bunker, doing her own inventory. What was needed, how much and how big was the bang going to be?
All of those scarecrow crucifying magpies that thought to do them harm were in custody courtesy of the FBI; but that did not matter. Eventually they would be back on the streets. They would just be the mice to her playful cat when they thought they were safe. And when she was on the hunt…no one was safe…and with this current situation of Eric being hunted, she was oddly amused and very pissed!
Three of Eric’s belongings had been destroyed tonight and yet neither she nor her maker had died in the process. Bad mistake to leave them still standing! Which was just going to leave the offenders always looking through their legs so at any minute they could kiss their collective asses good bye. It was heart-stopping to be on The Viking’s shit list. Which meant you were on her shit list as well. And she advertised that fact heavily
It was indeed the truth that she had taken out a full page ad in the New York Times back in the sixties telling Prince Wally that she was looking for him. Complete with address and phone number where she could be reached.
Eric just ended you. That was his Viking training. Run your sword through their guts or take their head off with you great vampire strength. Did not matter. To him dead was dead.
“No attention to detail,” she muttered, thinking about her maker. “He does not care what he is wearing to mark the occasion. Just bring the deathblow. I personally plan my wardrobe down to the color of my undies…seamed stockings and garters or open-toed sandals? And no white after Labor Day…never ever!”
What passed for fashion these days…she shuddered. There were going to be awards shows come the spring…she shuddered again.
“That is a whole different venue. Can’t be thinking about that now…but I will.”
Because there would be a new dark when she would take her revenge…and it was coming and she had the names and addresses. She would be busy in New Orleans for the next 24-48 hours but it would be a good busy. There would be puzzles and planning that caused you to exercise your mind as well as the body.
Fuck exercising good will. That was never going to be her game plan. Eric had taught her if someone strikes out at you with a wooden stake, strike back with the biggest amount of firepower you had at your disposal. Massive retaliation! Scorched earth! Eric was famous for it and she had been his most apt and talented pupil!
Did she love her maker? Well yes, in an offhanded Pammy Vampire loves her Maker Vampire kinda way. After all, it was Eric and she would do anything for him. And had done most things for him and would continue to embrace his perfection in the stratosphere of the gods…and of course fuck with him every chance she got!
Did she love chaos and mayhem even more? Well…that was a question best left for the sages, poets, and all those that had pissed her off and now walked the realm of the finally dead courtesy of her infamous and very creative massive retaliations.
If you were fortunate enough to travel in her inner circles, she was known as the Million Dollar Baby. Not many called her that to her face. But those who wanted to know her certainly whispered it when she entered a room. Her wardrobe ensembles and perfect toilette inspired one and all.
When she had been in Argentina being measured for these hand made boots, she had inspired El Che, bless his Marxist heart, to write the playbook that made him a household name in military circles.
Now here she was, busy going through her N.O. playhouse. There might be those who would call it an ammo bunker, but what the fuck did they know?
Happily and daintily she had down her .50 caliber machine gun and had taken it apart, greased it and then set the timing. That little timing wheel went click, click, click until it sounded just right.
“I love you,” she whispered as she picked up a leather alligator case and ran her hands across it. Placing it on the table, with nimble but deadly exquisiteness, out came her little beauty, a .50 caliber sniper rifle. “Any vampire can kill and terrorize using only his body and vampish ways,” she rolled her eyes and made a gagging sound. “That is so plebian, so yesterday, so Bill Compton.
But tis a bit difficult for a witch to spell a silver powdered bullet when you have no idea it is incoming.
And hurrah,” she stuck her finger down her throat and gagged, “for those folks who blow Were shit up with C-4. Seriously….you do not need brains or talent or finesse for that. Even monkeys can be trained to do it.” Rolling her eyes, she wiped the grease off her hands onto a rag she kept in her cleaning kit. “Compton comes to mind. What a buffoon!
I take great pride I can light a match with a bullet…in the dark…and that just brings a whole new elegant and grandiose venue to an otherwise dull and predictable guns-for-hire affair.”
Sun up was going to be a horizon event in about two hours, which was more than enough time. She would take care of the bar where this wicked deal was struck. “Seriously stupid fuckers, if you want to kill the snake, you had better cut off its fucking head and toss the head and body of the snake into a raging fire, just to be on the safe side.
Not that C-4,” she hefted a couple of pounds, “is not without its uses…”
Humming God Save the Queen, Pam found herself back down in the culvert, explaining things to Ronald Rat.
“Look,” she said eyeballing him and squinting a bit. “It is C-4. Forget what you see in the movies. That shit is not real life. Now, that three thousand dollar bottle of tequila I bought for you last time, that is real life. And I am not asking you to stick around. The bar is closed, I’ll knock out the glass, you go in, leave the explosive on the table and I will do the rest.
And if you do a good job for me tonight, well, I will perhaps have more business for you this week. It is going to be a busy one and I have a lot to get done. You help me and I will wave my fairy godmother wand and grant wishes and buy alcohol.”
There were a lot of squeaks forthcoming.
“Really?” she sounded doubtful. “You know that story? And the rat got cheated by being the carriage driver? You want what? To be the handsome prince?
Look little dude,” she leaned over and picked him up so that they were eye to eye. “I am not saying you are not charming, but my magic wand can only spread so much fairy dust around and it is all in spendable currency.”
The rat squeaked at her.
“Yes, yes and yes,” she rolled her eyes. “I was figuratively speaking. I don’t really have a magic wand but I do have a black American Express card and enough money to keep you in top shelf tequila the rest of your days.
So is that a yes or a no?”
The rat pondered that as she sat him back down. “Clock is ticking,” she smiled at him. “If you don’t want this job, Jimmy the Rodent over on 21st says he is interested. The winos are leaving nothing these days. Apparently they are recycling the empties for money.”
“Squeak, squeak,” and… something that sound a whole lot like “that fucking Jimmy…” was the last word of complaint as Pam loaded him with the C-4.
“And remember, you have to leave rat shit at the scene.”
This time the rat rolled his eyes and said something about “fucking vampires making us take the blame.”
“You’ll get used to it,” Pam grinned.
They were across the street and then Pam was back. A well placed bullet broke out the bottom window, in went Ronny and then he scurried back out, leaving his non-edible package behind. Crossing the street, he was back to Pam.
“See, I told you I would wait. I hold true to my word,” she groused at him as she took careful aim and fired at the fuse. It was most satisfying when the explosion blew the brick, mortar and fucking rosemary hand purifier into the New Orleans spell laden, night sky.
“We can hit two more before sunrise. You in?” she asked.
There was a lot of squeaking.
“Of course it gives you bragging rights,” she said shaking her head, disbelief in her voice. “What you do for me, you do for The Viking. I am his child, he is my maker; child/maker bond, I am in he, he is in me, yadda, yadda, yadda.
And yes I can call but you would have to leave a message. Daylight and all that.”
Ronny stood up on his hind legs and reached for the phone.
“I fucking don’t believe this,” she scowled. “Wait one. I’m dialing.”
The phone rang and there was the familiar, “This is Northman, leave a message.”
Making a face, Pam squatted down and put the phone by Ronny’s mouth.
The rat talk started in earnest.
Pam was glaring. “Look, he doesn’t want your life story.”
Standing, Pam said into the phone. “Eric, when you write your autobiography, Ronny wants to be at least a footnote.
See you on the other side of the big pond.” Putting her phone away Ronny nodded in agreement.
“Good,” she said picking him up. “Airborne in 3-2-1.”
When the plane landed, Samuel’s majordomo, Clifford, appeared.
“There seems to be a glitch,” and his look said he was anything but pleased. “There are no stairs available at this time so that we may disembark anywhere and someone gave the Raja permission to pull into The Da’vid hanger. Apparently someone in the transportation ministry said you would not mind.”
“I do not mind the military coming through and using it. I made that perfectly clear. Patch me through,” Samuel said standing. “And tell Saul to inform the tower that we are hanger bound.”
Sookie looked up at Eric.
“My brother values his privacy and that is why Samuel owns a hanger. It is another piece of real estate that earns him money so with the right clearance, you can rent it.
Military transport planes are always welcome there. No charge. They are even equipped to handle their dogs. Samuel provides a nice facility to decompress for the two legged and four legged warriors.
We were late taking off from Shreveport because the hanger was being used by a U.S. military team and Samuel wanted to give them time to relax and stretch, shower and have a meal before they loaded and took off.
That there are no stairs available, that could be likely but we always err on the side of safety because you do not know who is watching.
Now, if we are Supes, we can always elect not to wait on the outside stairs and just descend while the world watches and records who gets off the plane. Some Supes are so impatient that they do not wait and just float down to the tarmac. They announce to the world exactly where they are. If my face pops up somewhere, it is because I want you to know, not because I slipped up and you caught me on video.”
“Oh,” Sookie nodded, “I see. Very low profile.”
“Yes,” Eric nodded. “Now, Samuel’s people are on the ground right now, moving things along.
Well yes. You see,” the plane started to move forward, “even as we speak. This mistake is being corrected and Samuel is now tracking with the magic of his electronics who issued such an order.”
“Is it always like this?” Adele asked.
“Yes,” Eric nodded. “We take nothing for granted. Especially when traveling with civilians. Your safety is first and foremost.”
O.I. looked interested. “Do I need to be out workin’ some of my magic?” he asked.
“Not at this moment,” Eric grinned. “But I thank you for the offer.”
Adele smiled at Crankshaft. “This is going to be a good visit. And I am so looking forward to seeing the places you told me about in your stories.”
“My dearest Miss Adele,” he said bringing her hand to his lips. “It was never me intent to return. But now I am a findin’ I cannot wait to show you the places that helped to shape my life.”
“I want to see them,” she raised his hand to her face and rubbed against it. “And take photos. And use them in the book.”
“I’m not much to speak about,” he said to her, his voice serious.
Lifting her notebook, she fanned through the pages. “I already have just about filled this one with your musings and tales.”
Lafayette settled back into his chair and watched the older couple. There sat happiness.
Then his gaze shifted to Sookie and Eric. There also sat happiness.
O.I. was humming a little happy tune himself. When he raised his head up from around his big man’s neck, he winked at him.
“Righteous righteousness, my little man’s,” Lafayette stroked him between the ears. “All is good.”
At that time, Samuel walked back in and he looked a lot happier than he did when he left. Which was most excellent. Brother Samuel always appeared to be laid back. Eric had said in passing that Samuel had taught him a few things about getting even.
The oldest known living vampire was very solicitous. “We will be in the hanger in five minutes. The helicopter is waiting for us. Miss Adele and Miss Sookie and Mr. Lafayette, you shall have the grand London tour by night. I believe Ian is anxiously waiting for us. Something about carolers, hot toddies, a Yule log and Christmas cheer.”
Eric’s team was whisked through customs. Apparently word had been passed. No one was laughing about the mix up with the hanger or that Samuel had slapped Heathrow with a twenty million pounds sterling rental fee and a promised call from his lawyer.
“They told my team that the Raj was outbound with his guards to fight the war on terrorism,” was all Samuel said in a way of explanation.
Nothing was said but plenty of eyes were rolled.
Samuel shook all over, got past whatever he was going to say and smiled out at the group.
“Your sizes were forwarded to Ian,” Eric said standing and addressing his new family. “Along with your photograph. There shall be a wardrobe change available for you when we reach his home if you so desire.”
“You guys think of everything,” Sookie replied looking up at him with an arched eyebrow.
“Well yes,” Eric grinned. “We must. There is mischief afoot and I think it has already started.”
“What the fuck!” the ground guide Charles kept muttering as he guided the Raj’s plane out of the hanger and could see the 747 lumbering its way toward him.
The Were, Gerald, that was on the walkie-talkie next to him growled and for a moment Charles thought Gerry was going to unzip and piss on him he was so angry at this turn of events!
The visiting plane was diverted from the hanger and the Weres were walking it on to another lot. He and Gerald had been paid in advance to keep this hanger occupied and to keep all others out. That plan had lasted all of not even ten minutes. The Raj’s party had not yet disembarked and now they were going to bussed to where ever in hell they parked and were bound next.
He could hear someone screaming in his headset from the royal plane. There would be no red carpet, no flowers, no hookers waiting to greet them.
Gerald handed him a phone. “It’s Wion,” he mouthed in the shadows of the lamps illuminating the runway.
So this was how it was going to end for him. “Show no fear,” he thought and then said,
“You are dead, you worthless piece of Were shit,” Wion hissed. “I am going to mount you and after I have had my fun, then I am going to mount your fucking head on a fucking pike!
You give me back my money and then I will see in the New Year with you for entertainment!”
Wion threw the phone against the wall and growled, “Give me another one.”
Collecting himself he knew it would do him no good to lose control now. Dialing the number he began, “Director, the plane that Northman was on has pulled into a hanger. Another team has taken over. There is no way now of tracking him.”
“You promised me Northman by Yuletide, tied with a bow, under my tree,” came the friendly, diplomatic reply that held a nasty, veiled threat. “If you do not deliver as promised, you will not be seeing in the New Year.”
Wion stood and stared at his phone. “Gawd, I fucking hate politicians,” he said to his second who nodded in agreement. The Director had clicked off and he had until Yuletide to produce the vampire or his werewolf blood would be the base for the blood pudding.
“Where is the vampire’s bitch of a whelp?” he asked.
When no answer was forthcoming, he snarled, “Find her!”
The Grand Tour over London was everything Eric had promised. Sookie could see the sights that London had made famous and it all looked like a fairyland in the deep, dark, of the winter’s night!
“What’s that?” she asked. “Is that,” she stressed the word, “is that where we are going to land?”
“There is no place like home,” she heard the clipped upper crust British accent in her headset. “Miss Sookie and Miss Adele and Mr. Lafayette, I am so happy that you will be joining us for our Yuletide.
We have a bonfire as a way of greeting,” and on cue, the darkness on the ground was replaced with the dancing of flames! “And as soon as you have had your first toast to the Yule season, we hold the promise of fireworks!”
“Thanks,” Sookie was able to get out as the flames grew higher as the ground got closer.
Stepping out of the helicopter, Ian and Cedric were there to greet them with flower, holly, and heather bouquets.
After the initial hellos, a hot rum punch was served, “A blessed Yule!” was shouted to the heavens and Ian pointed to the North sky as the sextet began Greensleeves and fireworks lit up the night sky!
The firework spectacle ended with the Union Jack and the Stars and Stripes appearing together on crossed staffs. After much applause and cheering, the celebration moved inside.
“I thought we would begin in the original part of the house,” Ian smiled as Gran took note of all the different types of greenery and flowers that had been worked into the great hall.
“The large round tower; the donjon or keep, was built first. The slender round tower was built as soon as the keep was finished. Then as wealth arrived in later centuries, the manor house was added on. The entire domicile is rift with Gothic arches. Not just the windows, but the doors as well and as you can see, the stone mason continued the pattern in the brick work in the walls, as well.”
“Your home is beautiful,” Sookie smiled at him. “Thank you so much for having us. I must admit, I have been very excited about spending Christmas here, but also a little horrified at intruding in upon you at this time of year.”
“Miss Sookie,” Ian bowed and took her hand. Bringing it to his lips, he placed a very chaste kiss there under Eric’s watchful eyes.
“Samuel and Eric are part of my family. The red-headed Irish lad I have known since I was a child. I am honored that you would bless my home with your presence.”
“Thank you,” she said as she gave him a small bow of her head.
“Now,” Ian led them through the foyer and into the great hall. “I see we have a noble and good fire. I believe it is time to set the world to rights.
Scully Crankshaft,” he said addressing the older vampire. “There is someone going to be in attendance that I would like for you to meet and who would like to meet you. Eric has told me about how private you are in your personage. But the Queen of England is arriving in an hour and she would like to bestow upon you a knighthood.
You shall be shown to your chambers and you have a variety of clothes to pick from. Formal wear is what is required for this evening. So if you would please, I would be happy to escort you to your rooms.”
Sookie and Adele were just a little awestruck!
Scully had cried off and on during the ceremony, saying that what he did was nothing. That Londoners had seen the angel and it was not him who had saved all those souls. He was not an angel. He had just done what he could.
Smiling at him HRM dubbed him and said, “Rise, Sir Angel of Green Park.
Your Queen and your country are forever in your debt.”
There was a toast to the newest knight of the realm and then the Queen and her entourage were gone.
“I meet Elizabeth the First,” Samuel said as Reggie, Ian’s mastiff sat beside him, dozing off and on in front of the fire while Samuel ran his hand down the dog’s back. “They are not so unalike. Both women of iron and wanting what is best for their country.”
As the evening progressed there were comfortable lulls in the conversation as glasses were refilled or everyone stopped to listen to a particular strain of music and sometimes even to sing along.
“How old is the keep?” Sookie asked, snuggled in next to Eric as she listened to the fanciful and the elegant words that were bandied about her.
The Irish lad, Cedric, King of Eire. She decided she could listen to his bullshit, as Eric so elegantly called it, all night. There was magic in the way he said the words and from time-to-time she could see the ancient mists rising up and dancing around her ankles when Cedric talked about the ageless stone henges and the lives that had swirled through history, adding color, depth, horror and charm.
“Who has the best story ever about Eric?” she laughed. “It had to happen in London so that we can include it in the book.”
“Oh no…” Eric leaned forward a bit, his eyes on his friends. “No. I forbid it.”
Which just made them all laugh…Ian louder than the others.
“Well, a bit of London history is in the telling,” he chuckled. “Though bloody hell, I must say it was not funny at the time. The keep had just been finished. The tower was built to commemorate the fact that the fire of 1666 had not reached this far. That this was indeed a blessed house.”
“Yes,” Cedric was chuckling, “No need for we Irish to go to war with England. Just leave it to The Viking to do the work for us. Eric’s motto back in the day was *Why just burn down the house when you can burn down the entire inner city?”
“The fire that started on Pudding Lane was not my fault,” Eric grumbled. “The prostitute threw that lantern. How was I supposed to know that she wanted to be paid in gold and not the minted coin of the crown? Seriously, I cannot read minds. She was trying to kill me. ‘Burn, you cheap bastard, burn,‘ she screeched the whole time while the room went up in flames around us. I tossed her naked ass out the window and then I hauled my ass out after hers.” He could hear Samuel still chuckling as he tried to stare down his brother who only laughed harder. “I can not read minds,” he grumbled, again, and raised Sookie’s hand for a kiss.
“You started the fire of 1666?” Sookie drew back from him.
“Oh, that’s not all he is famous for,” Cedric was also laughing. “You should hear how he put the lean in the Leaning Tower of Pisa.”
“Cedric!” Eric cut his eyes to his friend. “That is not for polite company.”
“I know that, me boyo,” he grinned. “I am a figurin’ the Lady of Your Heart will vex it out of you.”
Eric said nothing. He just took Sookie’s hand and brought it up for a kiss.
“What?” Ian’s voice was quiet and thoughtful. “You thought we would not know?”
“I am here to do a job,” Eric responded. “My team is here to write a book and enjoy Christmas in your lovely home.”
Sookie said nothing. Just sat and watched as this, whatever this was, played out around her.
“You are among family here Eric,” Ian said softly. “And she knows that. And by not acknowledging Cedric’s title that clearly you have bestowed upon her, you have hurt her.”
“She may hold my heart,” Eric whispered, “but it is more than that. I love her and I have not yet told her.”
“Then we leave you to it,” Ian said rising. Everyone stood and left the two of them alone in front of the fire.
“You are so beautiful,” he said as he pulled her into his lap. “And not just the beauty that fades. But the kindness and the regard you have for others. The respect you have for others and also for yourself. That your family is your all. That your umwelt is complete. I cannot see how your world would have any need for the likes of me.
My world, however….” He hesitated. “I have waited a thousand years, Miss Stackhouse, for you to walk into my life. To know in my soul that you are the woman that I have held in that secret place. Just waiting…waiting for her. As a human, I sailed around the unknown world to find you. As a vampire, I would…” he paused and placed kisses on both of her hands. “I would greet the sun if I could have your love to take with me.
Is this what love feels like…?” he shrugged. “I think I know what love is. Love is sacrifice. That I would give of myself to protect you. That I would do all that I could to keep you safe. That I would want for you to continue in this world that you would make a better place.
I have a deep and abiding respect for you and the way you have lived your life. I have had a thousand years of watching and hopefully learning from others mistakes and my own.
Are you safe with me, no. Do I want to be with you, yes.”
Eric smiled at her and wiped the tears away that were on her cheeks and spilling from her eyes.
“Joyeux Noël, Sookie,” Eric kissed her lightly on the lips. Her hands moved to his face as she traced along the curve of his face. “The only thing I have to give you is myself,” her voice cracked as she started crying in earnest.
“An honest and true representation of your soul, Sookie, is what translates from your heart to your mind and body. My friends, Samuel, Ian and Cedric and Pamela, I say the same about them. I like who I am when I am with them. There is no contrivance. No deceit. No lies. They are not only my friends, but also my family. I love them.
I would be honored, Sookie, if I could include you in this same realm. And even more honored if you thought of me the same way. Cedric was correct of course. You are the Lady of My Heart.”
“I…I…yes…” she was weeping, her heart there on her face as Eric leaned in and placed his forehead against hers.
“It will not be easy,” his hands caressed her back. “We have to combine our umwelts. Our worlds are so different but parts of it overlapping. Like a Venn diagram.
I have no idea how we shall work out the particulars. I only know that my umwelt would never be in proper order again if you were not a part of it.”
“I would like to be a part of your world, Eric,” she hiccupped as she rubbed her nose against his.
As Eric settled back into the chair, she nestled into him. Holding hands, they let their fingers express what they were feeling inside. Skin, softly touching skin as their fingertips traced out I Love You on the palms’ of their hands.
“We can stay here until you fall asleep,” he sighed as he rubbed his nose in her hair.
Looking up at him with questioning eyes, Eric grinned at her and kissed her on the nose.
“Scully is the head of your blood family. I have to speak with him and I shall do so with the new dark. I do not believe he or your grandmother would want to be disturbed.
So we shall talk and together we shall discover the intimacies of our minds. I will begin with
I like the snow, when it falls gently on a cold, dark night. The crystalline, soothing white reflecting the least bit of unknown light. How about you?”
“I have never experienced snow,” she replied, her eyes meeting his.
“I do like to listen to the frogs singin’ at night,” she grinned at him.
“The first sign of spring,” Eric nodded. “Growing up in Sweden, it meant winter had loosed its grip and welcomed warmer weather was being heralded.
I think, Miss Stackhouse, winter has loosed its grip on me since you have become the Lady of My Heart.”
*Carroll E. Stewart. I Said No…Chapter 5
I think I have Jack’s schedule figured out…so far at least. (Who, according to the Vet, is about 1 & ½ years old. He is a Lab, German Shepherd and Hound mix. Seriously, he started baying the other day when we were outside. The Hound of the Baskervilles, anyone! We have declared Halloween his birthday and this year he shall be two!) He takes a nap in the morning and one in the afternoon. During this time, I shall write my small bits and my desire is to get back to posting on Monday’s. So whatever gets written during that time gets posted.
I continue on with physical therapy…it kicks my ass.
I am using muscle groups that have not been fully engaged in a while! To quote Jack…woof….! But it is all good!
As always, thanks for reading!
Be blessed and be the blessing,