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.
Give Thanks—Chapter the Only…A Thanksgiving Story
Sookie was in Shreveport and had pulled over at a gas station. Fangtasia was just a couple of miles up the road and she was not a coward!
“I am not a coward!” she said with gusto, shaking her fist in the air. “And at the moment, the preacher can just eat shit and die…sorry,” she said looking sad and skyward. “I did not mean that but when he gave us this challenge…I was good with the other months,” she sighed. “But…this sucks the big ugly one…” her voice trailed off. She knew it was the right thing to do…but still…ick…!
Picking up the piece of paper she studied it carefully. On it she had written five names. People she needed to tell them that she was thankful that they were a part of her life.
At the top of the monthly hand-out was written:
This is not the people you love! These are the folks you consider a thorn in your side!
“Damn it,” she sighed. “Damn the preacher and his be better than you are ways! Fuck me for taking the challenge!
Well yes Sookie,” she chided herself. “You can walk up to these folks who have screwed you over and tell them you are thankful they walked into your life. That because of them you are a better person. That because of them you are stronger and more self reliant…” rolling her eyes, she stared at the list of names. There was still one left on it without a line drawn through it. Eric Northman.
“I am thankful for Eric Northman,” she nodded to herself. “I am thankful for Eric Northman,” she began the chant as she pulled out of the gas station and back onto the highway.
Pulling into Fangtasia she had her twenty at the ready. There was no asking for favors or vampire to escort her in. “Be thankful that you have a twenty to give them,” she told herself as she stood in line.
“As I live and no longer breath,” Pam was watching the crowd at the door. “If it is not the sweet and delectable Miss Stackhouse.”
“What?” Eric replied as he walked up behind her. “Sookie is here?”
“Fuck a duck,” she mumbled to herself. Timing was everything and the god that ruled timing is everthing obviously bought her maker drinks and washed his Vette. Probably kissed Eric’s ass as well. “My maker,” she said with a bow of her head. “I wish you would make some noise when you walk up behind me, especially when I am pandering to my basic, lower self. I was wanting to have some fun…”
Looking at his face, she stopped. Sookie…Sookie Stackhouse…that little bloodbag was taking all the fun out of Eric and funneling it…well who the fuck new? Her maker was different once the little feisty blonde had walked into his life. And when she walked into the same room where he was…she did not recognize the vampire that had made her.
“I will escort her in,” was all he said as he turned and walked away.
“Really?” Pam took a step back. “Eric is going out into the unclean masses? Just what the fuck?” she gasped. “How can we possibly make any money if he just parades around outside like he is a nobody?”
Sookie was patiently waiting her turn as I.D.’s were checked, money was taken and hands were stamped. Standing in the back of the line, there was a notable hush that fell over the crowd. It was a ripple effect. It started at the front and the silence was making its way toward the back of the line. Then the reason for the silence stopped and stepped in front of her. Looking up, there he was, Eric Northman. The bane, irritation, annoyance of her existence for which she was grateful.
“May I escort you in?” he asked offering her his arm.
“Not if you are smirking…” she stopped herself. Check the attitude! She was thankful for knowing him!
“Yes, please,” she smiled graciously as she put her hand on his arm.
With a grin, he put his other hand in the small of her back and shot straight up into the air.
Screaming, she wrapped herself tightly around, her face burrowed into his shoulder. When they stopped, “Look,” he whispered in her ear. Hovering there in the air, she thought she could touch the moon!
“It’s beautiful up here,” she whispered back to him as they floated down in the back of the building.
How serious could he be? Best just to keep it light! “Not as beautiful as you,” he whispered back, a small grin lurking about his face.
As she unwrapped herself from around him, she glared at him and shook her head.
He grinned at her and smoothed out her hair, pushing it from her face, his hands lingering on her neck, then her collarbones, her warmth flooding him!
She glared again but said nothing as she took a step back and turned toward the door.
Pam opened the back entrance and Eric, with his hand once more in the small of her back walked her inside and into his office.
“I am flattering myself that you came here to see me,” he smiled at her as he picked her up by the waist and set her down on the overstuffed Eric sized leather couch.
“Well,” she began, slowly, “that would be the truth of the matter. I did come here to see you.”
Arching an eyebrow at her, he sat down beside her. “I am intrigued Miss Stackhouse. The last time you were here, I seem to remember you had invited yourself into the basement when you found me well…naked…” his eyes twinkled at her. “And enjoying the delights of another. I hope the view of my ass was as good as the view of my front.”
“I came for my money…the money you owed me,” there was a bit of heat in her voice. Clearing her throat, she placed her hands in her lap, took a deep breath and looked into his eyes. “And I thank you for the bonus you included with that check. It has been most helpful. That is why I am here.”
“I paid you for the work that you had performed for me. And you were correct, I was late in paying you. That extra money was interest on what I owed you.
So tell me Miss Stackhouse,” he said moving the imaginary strand of hair from her face and tucking it behind her ear. “What brings you calling?”
“The first Sunday of each month this year, our preacher puts out a monthly challenge. Nothin’ big. Just small things. Havin’ to do with being kind, rememberin’ to smile, wavin’ at folks when you see them on the street. Just tryin’ to make our town a little more compassionate and caring. Well, the month of November rolls around, and that first Sunday there is the flyer of what you can do if you want to take the challenge.”
“You took the challenge…?” he said slowly.
“Yes,” she nodded and took out the piece of paper and handed it to him. “I figure this can explain it better than I can.”
Eric read the front and smiled when he got to the part that said:
This is not the people you love! These are the folks you consider a thorn in your side!
“Interesting,” he nodded, “I am the first one on your list and the last one to be marked off.”
“Yes,” she nodded. “It is Thanksgiving Eve. I have got all my bakin’ done and errands run and you are the last thing I have to get done before the clock strikes midnight. After this month, I only have December left to do. I am happy to say I have taken the challenge every month. This…this has been the hardest so far. Comin’ to see you.”
“To tell me that you are thankful for knowing me?” He kept his voice in neutral. She was kind. And she was funny, and she was interested in him. He knew that. But she was too much a lady to let her emotions rule her body.
“Yes,” she sighed. “Yes, I am thankful for knowing you. Gran reminded me of that when we paid our taxes and got a new hot water heater and washer and dryer. She said if it had not been for that extra money you paid me, well…” she shrugged. “I have taken cold showers before and you can line dry here just about year round. The Laundromat is gettin’ a bit pricey though.
When…” she had told herself she was not going to cry. “When we went turkey shoppin’ last week, we bought everythin’ we wanted for our Thanksgivin’ dinner. We had never done that before.
So I am thankful for knowin’ you, Eric. And I mean that. And,,,and just not for the work…the money.” There! She said it! “I am thankful for knowing’ you. Eric Northman, vampire at large and Sheriff of Area Five. And once or twice, I have thought even maybe you had my back.”
Eric nodded in agreement and whispered, “Always.
Besides, you have a hard to come by skill set Miss Stackhouse.” He could see the frown beginning to form. She never wanted this…he knew that. She considered the telepath part of her life it a curse and not a blessing. While she was in the unhappy mode he just charged on. “Why did you stop seeing Compton?” he asked.
“Wha-a-a-t?” she stammered a bit.
“Billy Boy is in N. O. He is trying to wiggle his way back into being Sophie Anne’s main ass kisser. So far, no luck. What sent him packing? I know for a fact our queen did not recall him.”
“I told him I never wanted to see him again and if he continued stalkin’ me, I was gonna’ talk to you.”
Eric arched an eyebrow.
“That extra money you paid me, he wanted a share of it. I told him no. He called me your whore.”
Eric felt his fangs snick down. Compton’s days were numbered!
“How much did he take of the fifteen thousand?” he asked.
“Half. He said he was being generous. That any other manager would have taken two-thirds.”
“From now on Miss Stackhouse, you work directly for me. I will call you with a job and guarantee your safety. If anyone,” he stressed, “calls asking for your time, just refer them to me.”
“Okay,” she nodded. Clearly, there was something still weighing on her.
“You still look troubled?” he lifted her hand to his lips and placed a small kiss there.
“That woman you had down in the basement. Do you do that to all the women you are with?”
When they had been working together, there had been some mild flirtation. Nothing overt, just long glances and both of them listening carefully to what the other one was saying. Then there was the way she would step into him whenever he would talk to her. Just like she was doing now. Leaning into him. Not stopping his hands from re-arranging her hair. “Careful Northman…be very careful,” he told himself.
“The basement, that is what she likes. I obliged her.”
Nodding her head, she was beginning to scoot her way to the front of the couch.
“I would never do that to you Sookie,” he said gently as he placed his hand on top of hers. “My time with you is always something sacred…to be that intimate, it would be something sacred. Those moments would always be cherished and remembered as I walk this cold, lonely path. You are that one ember that sits in my cold fireplace. The very small flame that could turn me into a roaring fire.
Compton is going to meet the final death for calling you a whore.”
When she stated to say something, he smiled and shook his head. “I only promised not to hurt the humans. I said nothing about lower than Were shit lying, cheating, vampire scum.”
When she raised her eyes to his, there were tears glistening there.
“Lover,” he whispered to her as he raised her hand to his lips. When he saw the shock on her face, his smile got bigger. “Just a term of endearment. But it pleases me to say such to you.” He finished placing kisses all over her hand. He was very pleased that she had not pulled it away. Raising her face to his, leaning down, he gently rubbed his nose against hers. “You are sacred to me, Miss Stackhouse. A part of my inner being. A part that I thought I had lost a long time ago. I feel you rising up inside of me. My own personal Valkyrie. A warrior princess that reminds me that I am more than just man or vampire. That I had my beginning in the mists of time and I walk here for a reason. Lover, I think you are that reason.”
Putting both her small, warm hands on his chest, he felt her grace flow through him. “I will never lie to you, Sookie. And I will be fair and just with you. I will treat you as I wish to be treated.”
“You tease me somethin’ fierce,” her voice was only a whisper.
“I know,” he softly replied. “That is because, when I see you…it teases me into thinking things could be different between us.”
Nodding her head, she leaned in and gently rubbed her nose against his. Then her hands shifted and they were on his face. Her warmth radiating out through him causing his blood to sing!
His lips went ever so gently over her face until she pulled him to her. Her mouth hungry for the taste of him! Her hands hungry to feel him! Her body…he did not linger there….it was too much of a risk!
When the kiss ended, both of them were panting heavily. “Lover,” his eyes held hers. “My office in Fangtasia is not a place of sanctuary. Nor is it a lover’s bower. You deserve all the fine things this world has to offer. And perhaps one or two something’s from Valhalla itself.”
Saying nothing, she ran her hand down the curve of his face.
“There is a deep and languid passion to you Sookie. Hungry and yet your body wants to take its time. To taste all the delights before moving on to something equally as pleasurable. This wanting…is this why you did not want to come and see me?” he asked gently.
“Yes,” she nodded. “From the first time I saw you, sittin’ up there on your throne,” she shook her head at the remembering, “at that moment I knew that the reason Compton had come into my life was to introduce me to you.
When I saw you fuckin’ that woman in the basement, that was a reminder to me that people are complicated and vampires are not human. That was the jolt I needed to tell Bill he was not getting any more of my money and to tell him to fuck off when he called me a whore. I certainly have been called a lot worse working at Merlotte’s but to be called Northman’s whore. That struck a chord. Like maybe someday I just might be that. That I just might write myself into that role and make it a self-fulfilling prophecy. So I have stayed away.”
“Never,” he answered with venom. “But that you will be my lover,” there was tenderness in his voice. “Yes. Yes. If this is what you want,” he pulled her hands into his. “Yes. But not here.”
Sookie nodded as they both heard Eric’s door open and in walked Pamela.
Sookie removed her hands from Eric’s and slid off the couch.
Pam’s face was a bit gleeful. Nice. They were not fucking but still, her entrance had an impact! “Eric, you are needed. There is a female willing to pay five thousand dollars to see you without your shirt on. I told her you would be right out.
Sookie,” she smirked. “Bill has been spreading lies about you. He has been telling folks that you are Eric’s whore. I had to correct him. I told him my maker would never fuck anything so poor and Southern.”
Eric’s fangs dropped and he hissed an obscenity in Old Norse at his child. Before he could react, there were blue fingers of lightning flowing from Sookie’s hands!
“I know you don’t like me. And I am fine with that,” Sookie said as she pushed Pamela into the wall with her will. “But I don’t go around sayin’ ugly things about you. To anyone. And as much as Bill tried to wiggle information out of me about what went on in this office, I told him that was none of his business.
I am tellin’ you that I am none of your business,” she said now standing face to face with Pamela as the blue flames fled from Sookie’s hands onto the vampire’s body that was beginning to smoke.
Sookie took a step back and dropped her hands. Pam fell into a crumpled heap on the floor.
“Fae,” Eric grinned.
“Yes,” she felt a small smile forming. “I just found out myself. My fairy godmother stopped by and clued me in…to a lot of things. How did you know?”
“I fought in the Fae Midlands Unholy Wars. I really did not want to but my brother, Samuel, he was committed to the cause and therefore I was committed to the cause. I saw of lot of that go snaking around me and lighting up the enemy.”
Shifting his attention he said to his child, “You are going to be fine. Of course, your manicure is ruined until your nails grow back in. That is going to take a couple of months. I speak from experience.”
There was something that sounded like, “Oh fucking yeah and oh fucking lucky me!” coming from the singed heap on the floor.
“Midnight,” Sookie tilted her head to one side and counted down with the grandfather clock. “I have to be home by two. We bought a twenty-five pound turkey and invited everyone we know to eat with us. That bird is just about as big as our oven. I told Gran I would put it in at two so it will be ready by noon.” Her hand reached out and once more caressed the side of his face.
“Lover,” he raised it to his lips and kissed it. “I will see you home.”
Walking out the back door to her car, she felt all the old fears dissipate. The worry was gone. The burden of wondering about Eric well…now she had different things to wonder about.
“You know,” Sookie sighed, “there is no money with this Fae business. I was hopin’ it came with a treasure horde or somethin’…nope…if you want free money, apparently you have to be related to the leprechauns. And Etty says they do not part with their gold willingly. Good thing I still got that telepath thing goin’ for me.”
“A very good thing,” Eric grinned as he helped her into her car and then got in on the driver’s side.
“Because it just so happens I am in need of a telepath.”
Eric kissed her goodnight and then waited until she got upstairs.
It was a very short flight to New Orleans. A very short flight. And when you were fueled by a rage that had been burning for a thousand years, you could even say extremely short.
Eric could recognize the stench that was Compton from a distance. Interesting, he was not at the residence. Which worked for him. He was, however, sitting out in front of Madame Vedo’s, watching people come and go. Landing a couple of blocks away, Eric watched him as he went about the business of pretending to be on some sort of mission for the queen. Nodding his head as vamps passed by or came down of her shop and would say, “Waiting on Vedo to finish an order.”
“He is dumber than Were shit. He knows Vedo can hear him. How long does he think he can sit there and say that before she has had enough?
Oh,” Eric chuckled, “timing really is everything.”
The shop bell on her front door rang as the door opened and out stepped the proprietress herself. With a wooden stake in her hand!
Bill was gone in a flash!
Eric grinned as he watched the halfwit speed away. Looking around, Eric stepped out of the shadows and saluted her.
With only a small nod of her head, she threw the stake in Eric’s direction. When he caught it, she stepped back inside.
“Billy the Boob,” Eric said in his best six o’clock news caster voice, “in the woods; death by stake.”
Bill would not have gone far. He never did when he was running from trouble. It reminded Eric of when he hunted rabbits. Eric strolled along for a few miles and found Bill tormenting a homeless person.
“Lower than Were shit,” Eric said out loud, causing Bill to turn and look his way.
Eric was airborne with Bill in his arms, his back, arms and legs broken. When Eric set down in the woods, he threw Bill to the ground where he had the satisfaction of hearing a few more bones break.
“Northman’s whore,” Eric tisked under his breath. “Did you think running to Sophie-Anne would protect you from me when I found out about this?
Bill o’ Bill oh what to do? You called my lover my whore. You know Bill,” Eric grinned, “you could be my whore. Pull all you teeth, slowly and with much pleasure remove your fangs, and just enjoy the ride.
Sadly, I have not that kind of time for such pleasures, tonight. I have one more stop I have to make. So, let’s see, a stake through your heart,” Eric pushed it in until the blood oozed out. “Shame on me, now I am toying with you.”
Bill’s eyes bugged out when Eric raised his fist and made contact with the stake. The Viking was gone before Compton turned to goo.
The Fae War…he thought about that as he traveled home. He did not want to think about it and had side stepped it for the past thousand years. But here it was…Sookie was Fae…some things really did come back to bite you on the ass.
When he locked himself into his sleep chamber, he built a fire and sat back in his chair and watched the flames. Nothing to be done for this now. His lover was Fae. Time to move on with his life.
Reaching down into the fireplace, he removed a flaming stick. Staring at the flames, he wrote his name Erikr, on the air and watched the smoke linger, blazing past a million stars and take form until a door formed.
Tossing the stick back into the firebox, with a thought, he pushed his blue lightning at the door and watched it light up, the flames licking around all the intricate carving that had spread out from his name.
When it opened, a very small dragon gave him a very toothy grin. “Mo’ fo’n, my prince, it is good to see you. I will tell your father that you are here.”
“O.I. o’ king of the dragons, you charming rascal, I see you are still waxing your eyebrows.”
“The ladies,” he wiggled them, “they are enamored. One moment please and I will tell you father.”
The small dragon, who was at this time about the size of a house cat, fluttered away and into view came a man who could clearly pass as Eric’s older doppelganger.
“I am pleased to see you, Erikr,” he said with joy in his voice. “It has been an age since you passed this way.”
“I learned a valuable lesson today,” Eric began, his voice humble. “It is Thanksgiving time in the land where I live. Humans celebrate with food and with giving thanks for whatever they call a blessing in their life.
I just wanted you to know that I am thankful that you loved my mother, a half-ling. And I am thankful for the life you provided for us.”
Er-erikr raised his hand. He did not know how much time he had but he had a lot to say. “Do not, my son. It was my privilege to be loved by your mother. And by you as well. I raised you on Earth because I wanted you to be human. I…I wanted to be human. For a while, to leave behind the wars and the pettiness. I kept you there for your safety and my joy. It was not because I was ashamed of you.”
Eric nodded. He had wondered….
“I…I just wanted you to know I was thankful for you staying with her until her death.”
“Erikr,” he took a step forward, “I loved your mother. How could I not do otherwise? Her spark and mine…” he reached out with his hands, “you cannot lie to the light that fuels the spark. And it found our love to be true and it blessed us with you.”
“Do I have brothers and sisters?” he asked.
“No,” Er-erikr said shock in his voice. “That is impossible. My spark configured to your mother’s and hers to mine. We mated for life. I can have no other children. I am not…” he hesitated. “I cannot be compatible…” he sought for the words, “fertile for another female.”
“Really?” Eric leaned forward.
“You cannot lie to the light, my son. I loved your mother with all that I am. I don’t have that type of love left to give. Why would the light allow me to father children with a woman that I could hurt a woman in such a way by not loving her with all that I am? As for the light skirts that pass my way, I might lay with her, but she knows she could never truly have my heart. It is pleasant, but they move on because they know I cannot feed their spark and they cannot feed mine.”
That was a lot to think about. So his spark…it would mate for life if there was truth. “There,” Eric began slowly, “there is a woman that intrigues me.”
“What is her name?” the older version of Eric grinned at him.
“Well,” Eric paused. “Well, it is Sookie.”
The king of the Fae broke into uproarious laughter. “Did you tell her that your name was Erikr Sookiehawk?”
“No-o-o-o-o,” he shook his head, “no I did not.”
“Well perhaps you should,” his father’s smile got bigger. “So…is she…?”
“She carries the blue flame. A woman by the name of Etty stopped by to explain the ins and outs of using the cold blue fire and is apparently her fairy godmother.”
“Well, if you are both willing, you could make me a grandfather,” the blue twinkled from his eyes.
“I am vampire,” Eric responded a bit too quickly.
“You are Fae,” his father’s voice was deadly serious and pointed his finger at him. “And you cannot lie to the light. If you both desire this, then it shall come to pass.”
“Really?” Eric said again, doubt in his voice.
“Really,” the older man replied. “I am thankful that you called my son. I leave you with much to think about.”
“It is good to see you father. I am sorry I have delayed so long in contacting you. And…” he paused, “I am thankful that you are my father.”
“And I am thankful that you are my heir,” the older man winked at him and then faded out.
“Were shit,” Eric hissed when he thought about the political ramifications of that as the letters from his name faded and door disappeared from his view.
Then…. “Oh Were shit! I could be a father!”
Hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving and found something to be thankful for!
On to the holy days and the holidays!
As always, thanks for reading!
Be blessed and be the blessing,