Disclaimer: I don’t own it. We all know it. I’m not affiliated with True Blood or the Southern Vampire Mysteries or their creators. No copyright infringement is intended.
A/N: Cricket, on the other hand, is mine…along with JP and any other OC’s that happen to pop in.
I snuggled into the pillow, sated and happy. Eric pulled me closer, spooning me, one arm under the pillow I was resting on and the other draped around my waist. I traced invisible designs across his forearm as his muscles flexed with his movement, tucking his fingers under me and holding me tightly. I sighed deeply and snuggled further into him allowing his leg to slip over mine. I felt him kiss the top of my head and heard a low purr coming from his chest. The vibration sent tingles throughout my body while a smile grew on my face.
This was the Eric I thought had been with me during our one and only night together, the Eric I thought I was getting to know. I wished for a moment that I wasn’t dreaming. Not that I was awake, but that my dream was real. I knew that in real life it would not be the same. It could never be the same again.
The real Eric had stolen my heart and crushed it. I wondered if he knew or even cared. I wondered if he had even ever thought about me after he’d left.
I had felt special, and I wondered if all the others had felt the same, given that I was certain there were thousands and thousands of others. Maybe it was a game he played, or maybe they all knew going in that it was pretend. I knew he was someone important. He was a Sheriff. He was an Ancient. I was sure he had responsibilities to the vampires in his retinue and in his Area, especially if what Godric had told me of the vampires revealing themselves would be happening soon. He would have no time for someone so insignificant. Of course, I remembered that he told me more than once that I was not insignificant to him. That had to be another part of his game. He would live forever, so what difference did the broken heart of another nameless, faceless woman mean? I should have known it was a farce right away. I would never be what he truly wanted. I knew that, but it was too late. I was already in love and he was only in my dreams. I remembered what Pam said the first time we met.
“Don’t bother. It takes much more than that to get his attention and hold it.”
I should have listened to her. ‘Shoulda-woulda-coulda! Quit bitching!’ My inner voice scolded me. I was right, or rather she was right…it was right? Whatever! The voice was right! I shouldn’t be worrying about the real world right now when what I wanted was currently curled around me like a kitten, a very large, blond-haired, blue-eyed, ferocious…kitten. This Eric was here and he was mine…at least until I woke up.
“What has you so pensive, beautiful girl?” he asked quietly in my ear, resting his chin on my shoulder.
“Hmm, nothing really,” I said.
“You are not telling the truth.”
“Maybe,” I shrugged, causing him to lift up on his elbow and look down at me.
“Your body has tensed. Tell me what you are thinking. Did you not enjoy yourself?”
I moved to roll onto my back and locked my eyes with his. His face held a look of uncertainty. Was he honestly worried that I hadn’t had a good time?
“Are you kidding me right now?” I giggled, “I so much more than enjoyed myself. I always do when I’m here with you. There aren’t enough words to describe how you make me feel.”
“Even when we argue?”
“I like our banter. You’re cute when you’re angry…well, not earlier, you were a little frightening.”
“Cute?” he scoffed, “I frightened you!”
“Pfft. You didn’t scare me. I was concerned that you were so upset. Still, as I said, perhaps somewhere in my head I wanted you to be as upset as I am all the time. Don’t take that the wrong way again. I don’t really want you to be upset. I just mean that sometimes I wish you felt the same as me. It’s like I’m going crazy, obsessing over every detail.”
“You are not crazy.”
“I think about you all the time. I look forward to sleeping because I know I’ll see you.”
“Then why…why did you not come?”
“I didn’t sleep.”
“I do not understand. If you want to see me, why not come to me?”
“I couldn’t. I was trying to…do something. I needed to do it during the day and…I talked about you the night before. It was too much to see you after that. It was just…too much. I needed…I don’t know what I needed. Honestly, I still don’t really get the whole thing that you were waiting, but I suppose I conjured it up, knowing I sort of skipped a night. You know what I mean?”
“You think that you created this in your own mind?”
“I do not agree with that.”
“Of course you don’t. I want you to feel like me and here I make you do just that. I don’t have intentions of doing it. It just happens. It’s the way it is. I want you to miss me, so you do. I want you to want me, so you do. I want you with me, so you’re here.”
“You make it sound simple.”
“It is…when I’m dreaming of you. It’s not so simple when I’m awake.”
“You don’t miss me and you don’t want me.”
“Maybe I do.”
“It’s more likely that you don’t,” I replied honestly.
“How do you know?”
“You’re not here.”
“I am here.”
“Yes, you are here,” I said, placing his hand over my heart, “but you aren’t really here.” I said, gesturing around the room, “I don’t even know where you are.”
“I know. You have asked.”
“And you don’t tell me because in reality, I don’t know. So, there’s no way for me to conjure up an answer to my own question and honestly, I’m not entirely sure I really want to know.”
“You asked several times before.”
“Yeah, but I don’t want to hear you say how far away you wanted to get from me,” I said sadly.
“I am here. You do not have to believe me. I will believe for us both,” he said, lifting my chin and brushing his lips across mine.
I ran my tongue along his lower lip and wrapped my hand around his neck, pulling him closer. Our kiss was filled with soft moans as we breathed in the other. I opened my mouth inviting him in. He shifted so the top half of his body was over mine and deepened the kiss, exploring my mouth and caressing my tongue with his as if it was the first time. My own hand found its way to his back and ran up and down, feeling the contour of each muscle as he pressed his bare flesh against my own. His hand fisted my hair, lifting and angling my head to where he could dominate the kiss with more passion. He was consuming me, and I loved it! I felt cherished and beautiful. Unconsciously, I rubbed my thighs together, feeling the wetness between my legs. He pulled back and inhaled deeply. He looked down and locked his gaze with mine, wearing a smug, sexy smirk. I stilled my legs.
“My, my, Miss Kerrigan, is there a problem? Something I should know about? Perhaps I could help.”
“Nope. I’m all good,” I replied innocently, then pulled him down forcefully into another intense kiss that left me panting when he pulled back to kiss down my neck to my collarbone, sucking and biting gently on the soft skin.
I moaned and reflexively arched my back, moving both hands to hold his head and threaded my hands in his hair. All the while he licked and bit, moving from one side to the other, then up the other side of my neck before claiming my mouth in another searing kiss. My toes curled at the sensation of his fangs sliding down, and I ran my tongue across one of the sharp points, offering it to him. He sucked my tongue into his mouth and swallowed, then pulled back with a moan.
“Every part of you tastes so fucking good,” he whispered huskily.
I groaned as I watched him mimic my action on his own tongue, showing me a drop of blood pooled there. I leaned up this time, claiming him as his tongue entered and healed my own. The sweet, rich taste of his blood was like dark chocolate. It caused me to suck harder, wrap my arms around his neck, and whimper when there was no more. He chuckled quietly and I felt him smile in our kiss. I pulled back slightly to look at him.
“Am I amusing you, Professor?”
“Not at all, Miss Kerrigan. I find your technique to be…hmm…how shall I put this?” he smirked playfully.
“Lacking?” I giggled.
“No, that is not it,” he said, looking up as if he was searching for the right word, but his smirk stayed in place.
“Inadequate?” I questioned.
“Still no,” he pondered teasingly.
“Defective, insufficient, unacceptable?” I huffed.
“Ah, that is it!”
“What the Hell?” I knew he was teasing, but cut a girl a break, right?
“What is the problem? I have figured it out.”
“Be very careful, Mr. Northman. What exactly have you figured out?” I narrowed my eyes at him.
“I find your technique to be quite enticing, erotic, unexpected, alluring, tempting, delicious…” he said with a peck on my lips as he punctuated each word.
Then the tickling began. He continued with a sexy voice as his fingers continued to torture me to the point that I was laughing so loudly, I couldn’t hear what he was saying.
“Please! Please stop! Eric, stop,” I squealed, wriggling underneath him trying to make my escape.
It did no good. I was completely at his mercy.
“Your laugh is intoxicating,” he said with a huge, child-like smile on his face. He was adorable.
“It will not be so intoxicating when I wet the bed! Let me up, you giant!” I cried out, still giggling, and pushing on his hard chest.
He rolled onto his back, pulling me with him and tucked a pillow under his head. I looked at his happy face, unable to keep my smile that I was sure matched. He tucked my hair behind my ear, and raised his head to peck my lips once more. I rested my head on his chest and wrapped my arms around his waist, hugging him close. He stroked my hair with one hand while his other ran down my spine to the top of my ass and back up again. I sighed contentedly. I loved him this way. Who was I kidding? I loved him every way.
“Min Sǫngr?” he said softly. I could hear hesitation in his voice.
“Earlier you said I might have to leave soon.”
“Yeah,” I sighed.
“I have told you I cannot.”
“Yeah, I know. You always tell me that.”
“If you know…then…what did you mean? Why did you sound so certain?”
I lifted my head and rested it on my hands so I could look into his eyes. I sighed at his worried look.
“I’ve told someone about…these dreams…about you.”
He growled low, but his brow only furrowed slightly.
“There is someone else?”
“No! No, it’s not like that.”
His face was sad. Dream Eric shouldn’t be sad.
“What is it like?”
“You should know this because I know it. I’m sorry if I’m making you feel badly. I don’t know why my subconscious does that? I want you to be happy here with me.”
“I am happy here with you. Perhaps I am this way because you feel badly? That is, if your theory is to be believed.”
“Tell me the rest.”
So I did. I explained about my conversation with Godric and his departure, avoiding his name. Even in my dreams it didn’t seem right to betray his trust, especially if he and Octavia were right in some way. I still didn’t understand why my subconscious mind would be causing my perfect man to feel this way, but I needed to say it out loud even if I was truly only talking to myself. Maybe I needed to work it out in my own head.
“So, you believe that perhaps whatever this woman thinks or says will take you away from me?”
“I don’t know. I don’t know what this entire…whatever it is means. My friend said it isn’t normal to dream of you every night like this. I thought it was because I had the real Eric’s blood at some point, but he said that wasn’t the case.”
“I am real.”
“I know you think that…”
“No. I know it.”
“OK,” I said, not wanting to argue about it, “In any case, depending on what happens, I might stop dreaming about you. I don’t know for sure, but I have to believe it’s a possibility.”
“Do you want our time together to end?”
I groaned, rolling off of him, lying on my back, and looking at the ceiling. The sadness in his eyes was too much for me to bear. I didn’t want to hurt him and I hated that I had to sort this out now, but, in some way, I supposed it was possible I was saying goodbye to the only connection I had to him, even if it wasn’t real.
“This past week or however long it’s been since my awake-self lost you, this is the only time I can be with you and as much as I love it, I think… Look, it’s not that I don’t want to be with you.”
“It’s because I want to be with you. I want to see you. I want to dream of you. I want to be with you like this all the time, but when I’m not here…it hurts me because…”
“It’s not real, Eric. You may say it’s your dream, but I think that’s me wanting you to feel that way again. It’s me wanting you to want me in real life. You know I’m dreaming right now. In reality, I’m alone. I can’t get over you if I’m with you every time I close my eyes. Right now, you’re mine and I’m yours, but I can’t sleep forever, and I can’t have you when I’m awake. I don’t even know why we’re talking about this. It might not even happen. I must be trying to prepare myself just in case.”
“I think you are trying to prepare me, so I will not wait for you if you do not come to me.”
“That’s just it. I don’t need to prepare you. You aren’t really waiting for me when I don’t sleep. That’s just the fantasy I allow myself to believe in this place. I think. Maybe. I don’t know. I’m confused when I’m awake. I’m confused when I’m asleep. I don’t feel like I ever get any peace. My head is full of so many different things.”
He rolled on his side to face me and I mirrored his position.
“Will you sleep tomorrow? Will you dream? Will you come here to be with me?”
“Probably. I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow. I don’t know if my friend will even return by then.”
“So, there’s a chance this might be our last night together?”
“I’m not sure why I believe that anything will change, but, yes, for some reason, I think there is a chance. I will try to see you again. I will try to come tomorrow. I’m probably wrong and everything will stay the same. I mean, you know, since you can’t leave and all,” I rolled my eyes dramatically.
His chuckled softly, but his smile didn’t reach his eyes and left too quickly for my taste. He sighed, and continued to stare at me.
“I want you to stay,” he said quietly.
“I know and I do, too.”
“It’s so hard.”
“I know,” he said, reaching over and running the back of his hand down my cheek, “I can see you are struggling. I know I am hurting you.”
“It’s not you that’s hurting me. It’s not even the awake you that’s hurting me. I’m doing it to myself. I just don’t know how…”
“To get over me,” he finished for me.
I nodded, feeling a traitorous tear leak from my eye. He wiped it away with his thumb and gave me a reassuring smile.
“I understand,” he said quietly, “I would not want to get over me either.”
It took me a second to realize what he said, and I watched the look on his face turn to mischief.
“You ass,” I said, pushing on his chest.
He chuckled and leaned in to kiss me gently. We both sighed.
“Well, if this is it…”
“You want it. You do not want to admit it here, but you want it. I hope you come tomorrow, but if you do not…”
“If you do not,” he continued, “then I must ask one thing.”
“Make love with me again? Let me love you, beautiful girl.”
He hadn’t called me that before, yet, in this dream, he’d said it several times. I liked it. It made me feel warm and wanted. I could only respond by nodding as another tear dripped from my eye. His whole face lit up as he moved over me and began kissing me tenderly, lovingly, and passionately. We made love several times, in several locations of the suite. It was, once again, magical and meaningful. Our gazes stayed locked as much as possible as we called out each other’s name in screams and whispers said like prayers. After we had loved each other thoroughly, we found ourselves standing naked on the balcony. He was behind me with his arms wrapped around my waist and I leaned back into his embrace.
“I’m not ready for you to go yet,” I whispered.
He placed a kiss on my shoulder and one on top of my head. I turned and wrapped my arms around his waist and buried my face in his chest. He stroked my hair gently and cupped my face. He leaned down and kissed me. It began softly, but grew in intensity. It was a kiss that said ‘just in case’.
“Shhh. I am not going anywhere,” he said quietly when he pulled back, “and you…you could always…stay.”
“I’ll wake up soon either way.”
“Then we cannot end the night here, can we?”
He reached down and lifted me under my legs, carrying me bridal style to the bedroom. He climbed in behind me and pulled me close, but I turned and rested my head on his chest, wrapping an arm around him while thinking about what used to be my favorite snuggle spot.
“Good night, min Sǫngr.”
“Good night, my Viking.”
“Come back tomorrow,” he whispered.
I knew he didn’t believe me. I felt one more kiss on the top of my head and he held me tighter as if holding me in place. I did the same.
It was the best dream I had had yet and I hoped I was wrong in my guesses, but I had a nagging feeling that something was going to change…maybe not tomorrow, but soon. I just wasn’t sure what that might be.
I woke to the sunset filtering through the curtains. I noted that I had, at some point, made my way into the bedroom, though I didn’t remember it happening. I’d never sleep-walked before, but I supposed there was a first time for everything. The over-exhaustion I’d allowed myself to achieve must have taken more of a toll on me than I’d thought.
Suddenly, I realized I was naked and sat up to see a trail of clothing leading to the bed! What the hell!? I must have really been on auto-pilot. I collapsed back onto the pillows and thought about my dream. I could practically feel Eric’s arms around me and the soft touches he’d placed all over my body. I touched my fingers to my lips thinking of all those heated kisses. The thought made me smile until the ache in my heart took over. Was I right? Was that it? Why did I feel like I would never see him again, in any way, asleep or awake? Would I have the choice to keep him in my dreams if something had changed? If so, what would I choose?
I thought about what I would do if I were to ever accidentally see him again. I knew I would want nothing more than to run to him and jump into his waiting arms, but that only happened in my dreams. The real Eric would not be waiting for me with open arms or a beautiful smile on his face. He would be angry and irritated that I found him. It wouldn’t matter that I hadn’t intentionally looked.
The words I’d said to my Dream Eric were true. I would never be able to get over my feelings if I continued to see him every night, but did I truly want to let him go in every way? No. Would it be best if I did? Of course. I closed my eyes tightly and tried to picture his smiling face, full of love as he looked at me. Beautiful girl. No one had ever called me that. He said it so genuinely as if he really believed it. God! I’m talking like a crazy person! Of course, he would believe it in my dream! It was a fucking dream!
That was the reason I had to stop the dreams, no matter how much it hurt. I couldn’t continue to think of him as real. I couldn’t pretend that what happened in the dream had anything to do with reality. This was reality. I was awake and alone. I felt the tears well, and rubbed my hands furiously over my eyes. Enough! I would either dream of him or I wouldn’t, but I absolutely could not continue to think of my Dream Eric as if he was real. It was ridiculous! I had never had a problem with that before. I had always awakened happy to have been with him and moved on to the waking world, but this felt different. I felt different about saying goodbye to him.
When I could no longer be still, I got up and went into the bathroom. After taking care of my needs, I took a long, hot shower. I tried to keep my mind off of Eric in any capacity. It was difficult until I started thinking about Godric. He would be rising soon, if he hadn’t already. What was he doing? Who was he with?
I stepped out of the shower, dried myself, and dressed into jeans and a tee-shirt. Then I made my way to the front room pondering what to do. I should be doing something, anything to keep my mind occupied, but there was nothing to distract me. I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye. When I turned toward it, I saw it was the curtains, flowing with the breeze coming in from the balcony. What the fuck? I knew I had closed those doors. I remembered locking them!
A chill ran down my spine as I approached the doors to close them. Just before I did, I remembered the end of my dream. Eric and I were standing outside and holding each other closely. My mind only stayed on that thought for an instant before I closed and locked the doors quickly, pulling the curtains closed. Was I really so deeply asleep that I opened them, the same way I had stripped on my way to bed? Things were getting more and more strange. I knew there was no way anyone could get into my room from the balcony. There was no way to climb up or down. Godric had flown, but unless it was him, no other vampire could enter without my invitation. My entire body shuddered at the thought of anyone trying. I really needed a distraction from my thoughts. Maybe I hadn’t closed them after Godric left? My mind was playing tricks on me! I had been so tired, and now I was just being paranoid.
I went to the kitchen, grabbed my moonshine and a glass. After placing both on the end table, I lit a fire and relaxed on the sofa. I poured myself a tall glass and drank it down, then refilled it and did it again. After I filled the third glass, I put the jug on the floor and pulled my legs under me, watching the flames. I was fairly confident that Godric would not be returning until the next night, but, in that moment, all I wanted was for him to knock on the door and just…be there.
I hadn’t even finished the thought in my head when there was a knock on the door! I froze in place and listened. I checked myself mentally and realized I wasn’t afraid as much as I was curious. I knew it wasn’t Godric, so I shook off my stupor and rose slowly, setting my glass on the table. I walked confidently toward the door, preparing myself for whomever or whatever might be on the other side. I took a deep breath and looked through the peephole to see…
There was no one outside my room from what I could tell. I pressed my ear to the door and strained to listen for movement or voices, then cursed the damn spell that eliminated all outside noise. Deciding that I would face whoever it was, I turned the lock, took a deep breath, and then opened the door. There was no one there! I stuck my head outside the door, and looked down the hallway in both directions. No one! I shook my head and stepped back into the suite. As I did, something on the floor caught my eye. There was a bottle of that fabulous Merlot with a note attached! I picked up both, closed and locked the door quickly, and carried them to the kitchen. I placed the bottle on the counter and opened the note.
‘My sweet thygatéra, I know that you are waiting anxiously for my return. I have no doubt you are curious as to my whereabouts. Do not think much on it. I am well. I arrived sooner than I thought I would with no problems. I will return tomorrow as promised and explain what I can. I arranged the wine to be delivered to you at sunset. I thought you might enjoy it tonight. To be honest, I knew you would need it. Stop worrying! I think we will have much to talk about. I will find out shortly. Enjoy the wine and be sure to get some rest in the morning. – G.’
Get some rest? Was he kidding? I shook my head and put the note on the counter. I opened the wine with a smile on my face and carried it to the main room, exchanging it with the moonshine, which I returned to the kitchen. I downed what remained in my glass and left it in the sink. Carrying a red wine glass back to the sofa, I filled the glass and pulled the throw over my legs, resuming the position I held earlier, watching the flames dance in the fireplace.
Don’t think much on it? Stop worrying? Yeah, like that’s gonna happen! He was right that we would have much to talk about, and I couldn’t quite imagine what it would be. What would she think when he told her what I was? If she was older than Godric, then she would surely know all about Muses and Sirens. Maybe she had also known them. I wondered what he would ask and what she would say. I wished he had taken me with him, but maybe it wasn’t safe. Of course, it would have taken longer since I wasn’t the Wendy to his Peter Pan and I sure as hell didn’t have any Fairy Dust lying around.
That thought brought to mind an image of Sookie with glittery wings and I giggled. I missed her. I missed them all. I even missed Pam. We started out on the wrong foot, but I had finally grown to begin to like her, well, at least respect her, and it seemed the feelings went both ways…slowly. As much as I had gone back and forth with the decision, I decided I really should call or text them, those whom I could, which excluded Pam unfortunately, when this was all over. Once I knew everything or as much as anyone could tell me, then I needed to decide what to do. JP was right! Fuck my stupid job, sitting behind a desk answering inane e-mails from whiny people about their dissatisfaction over this or that! I didn’t like it anyway.
I sat back and savored the flavor of my wine. It was sweet of him to send it. Actually, to think of my feelings at all when he was occupied elsewhere, and it was due to me and my own insanity was beyond thoughtful. I was so lost in my thoughts that I jumped when my phone rang, nearly spilling the red wine on the cream-colored sofa. I set it down quickly and went in search of my phone. It continued to ring from the bedroom and I found it in the pocket of the jeans I had discarded the night before. The ringing stopped as soon as I picked it up. The ID said it was an unknown number. I sighed. It would be impossible to return the call. I brought it with me and returned to my seat. I kept the phone in one hand and picked up my glass in the other, staring at it, and willing it to ring again.
It was around a half an hour later when I finally gave up and tossed the phone onto the sofa. I picked up the television remote and began flipping through the channels. I checked the free cable channel and rolled my eyes, groaning. Surprise, surprise! A “Truly Fucking Bloody” re-run was showing! I almost turned it on just to see him…almost. I realized then that I would never be able to watch my favorite fucking show again! Jackass! I turned off the television and slammed the remote down next to me! I rested my head back on the couch and stared at the ceiling. It was never going to end…
I reached for the phone, preparing to text JP just as my phone vibrated. I picked it up and saw a text from an unknown number.
- Tried to call. U must be away from ur phone & I still don’t have mine…grr. Anyhoo, just checking in. Still not having much luck over here. Maybe my mojo is off. O says she can’t help. (but between you & me I think she just won’t) LOL I’m sure you’re going crazy, but think of it this way…u get days of pampering and it’s all free! Srsly, I’ll find him for u. I’ll keep trying until I do. Ttyl8r, M.
As much as I was glad to hear Maggie was all right, the message spread on a new layer of guilt. She would keep looking until she found him. She would keep trying, and he wasn’t even fucking lost! At least we weren’t on the phone or I might have caved. No, I wouldn’t. I couldn’t betray his trust like that, but for fuck’s sake! Why wouldn’t he just call someone?! Everyone was doing something for me and I couldn’t do jackshit! The one thing I tried to do, I failed! I had no more clues how to find the information that would lead me to Godric’s child. None. Nada. Zip. Zilch.
I called Octavia, but there was no answer, despite that fact that I called about twenty times consecutively, alternating between her land line and her cell phone. Finally, I left a simple text.
- I know you know something! Call me!
OK, so maybe that wasn’t the best approach to take with a very old, very experienced witch that I truly didn’t know well. Yes, I knew it was the middle of the night, but come on, man! She knew what I wanted to know. Had she even bothered to try and find out? Why didn’t she at least give me an update? She knew I was waiting! I growled at the phone and drank the remainder of my glass. I was so aggravated, moreover, I was sad. I couldn’t give up on him. After I had calmed, I sent another text.
- I’m sorry, Octavia. I think you might be right. I mean, about the ties and everything. I really need to talk to you. Please call me tomorrow.
Hopefully, that would smooth things over. She’d be happy to hear that I agreed with all her theories, even if I didn’t wholeheartedly and maybe she would have some answers about my other question. Maybe she was researching right now, or scrying, or whatever it is she did with her magic, and couldn’t hear the phones. I really had no idea. I had to believe that was why she didn’t answer.
I looked at the time on my phone and realized the night was almost over. I couldn’t believe I sat on the sofa for so long simply thinking, but then that’s what I seemed to do with most of my time lately.
My phone rang and I checked the ID. JP!
“Hey strumpet! I’m so glad you called!”
“Hello, my little songbird, how are you this evening?”
“But, of course, my dear. Oh, now don’t sound so disappointed. I know you were expecting your boy,” he began.
“Is he there? Is he all right?” I asked, feeling slightly panicked that JP hadn’t been the one on the phone.
“Calm down, little one. Of course, he’s fine. Aren’t you, puddin’?” I heard him ask away from the phone.
“Hey Trollop! Love you!” JP shouted in the background.
“Have you no trust in me? I promised you I would take good care of him,” he said in his sweetest Southern drawl.
“I’m sorry, Russell. I didn’t mean anything by that. It’s been a rough night, I guess,” I felt properly chagrined.
“No offense taken, my dear. I knew he would just hand me the phone as soon as you answered. So why not avoid the middle man?” he chuckled.
“You’re right. Sorry.”
“Oh, stop that. He’s fine. I’m fine. Everything’s fine. Now, my love told me you wanted to speak with me. He said it sounded important.”
His love? Did he just say his love told him? I would definitely be asking my best friend about that little nugget!
“Um…yeah I did…I mean, I do.”
“Well, spit it out, little songbird. No need to be nervous. What can I do for you?”
“Right. Sorry. Um, I was just wondering… How would you go about finding someone’s Childe?”
“I assume you are not speaking of a child of human nature, are you? If you are, I would tell you to call the human authorities,” he snickered.
“No. Not a human child, well, I guess everybody was once a human, but, no, that’s not what I want to know.”
“Oh, my dear girl, you have lived a sheltered life. Not all creatures started or ended as humans,” he chuckled again.
“But I don’t like to speak of such vile creatures as those. On to brighter subjects! Whose Childe did you want to find?”
“Did JP tell you that there was a vampire missing in Texas?”
“He did. He also told me you are there. Honey, is that what you’re worried about? Why would you concern yourself with that? Have you cause to be afraid of this vampire?”
“No, it’s nothing like that. My friend is trying to help find them and I thought that maybe if they had a Childe…” I trailed off.
“That Childe would be able to find his Maker through their bond. That’s brilliant, my dear! I bet those Neanderthals never even thought of that. Those vampires in Texas are just as dumb as a bag of hammers!”
I laughed at his colorful expression and his happy demeanor over all. I really liked Russell and I was glad that JP was with him…even if we had to get to the bottom of that whole ‘his love’ thing.
“So, what do you think? How could I find out?”
“My dear, I don’t think you should get mixed up in the whole mess. It’s better for you to stay out of it and let them work it out themselves.”
“I know, but my friend said she will keep looking until she finds them. I want…I want to help her if I can.”
“Hmm, let me think…Oh, I know, that cretin Compton has been putting together some sort of Who’s Who in the World of Vampires nonsense. He might have the information you need.”
“Oh,” I said defeated. I would not be calling that fucker for anything, “I can’t believe Fuckface has the one thing I need,” I mumbled to myself.
I heard a loud guffaw on the other end of the line. Of course, Russell and his vampire ears heard what I mumbled.
“That is absolutely delightful, my dear! I have found my new nickname for young Mr. Compton, or should I say young Mr. Fuckface!” he continued to laugh loudly, “Oh, you sweet girl, thank you! I swear there are blood tears in my eyes right now. I haven’t laughed that hard in years…not with a woman anyway,” he said before breaking into a new round of laughter.
It was contagious and soon I heard JP in the background, laughing along with him as was I.
“Thanks for the information. Unfortunately, I won’t be calling him to find out. I doubt he would tell me anyway,” I said after the laughter from all of us had died down.
“Of course he wouldn’t. We are generally very guarded about our families, little songbird. I think his endeavor is foolishness myself. I would never give him any information about me or mine. However, I have heard he is acquiring quite a bit of knowledge, and I quite imagine there will be a market for that sort of thing. You know, for revenge and other ugliness.”
“Right. Well, thanks again. Give JP my love.”
“Now, hold on there, my dear. I said he wouldn’t give you the information. I never said he wouldn’t give it to me. In fact, as silly as it is overall, it might be worthwhile to have in the future, should one need such a thing.”
“Really? You mean, you’ll get it for me?”
“I will contact young Mr. Fuckface tomorrow night and tell him I would like a copy of everything he has so far. It might take time. We will also need the name of the vampire in question that is missing, of course. I would not want to simply give him the name without all the information. My business is none of his concern. I expect I will have it by the next night. We can bring it to you in Texas or I can simply contact the nest myself. Dealing with young, self-important vampires who overestimate their significance is such a bore, but it is always nice to be helpful when it is appropriate. I must set a good example, of course.”
“So, you think it will take two days?”
“It is too late tonight, my dear. I believe I will need to convince him just how badly he would like to give me the information free of charge. Then we will retrieve it and bring it to Texas. In the meantime, if you could find out from your friend the name of the one who is missing, it will expedite things that much quicker. Don’t worry your pretty little head about it. I will handle everything and my love will contact you with updates. Good night, my dear,” he said and hung up.
He had sounded very excited about whatever he planned to do to get the information. As much as I would love to relish in Fuckface doing whatever the equivalent was of a vampire peeing his pants, I was worried. Two days? That might be too late! What’s more, how would I explain their sudden appearance to Godric? Supposedly no one knew where I was and he knew I hadn’t told JP. He also asked me not to call Russell simply because he didn’t want anyone to know where he was! What had I done? I shouldn’t have gotten Russell involved. What was I going to say to Godric when he returned? I had effectively betrayed him.
They were coming.
As panic began to take over every thought, my phone rang. Thank God! The sun had not quite risen fully and I knew it was Russell calling back. He must have forgotten to ask something or maybe he needed to give me some instructions. Whatever the reason, I welcomed the call. I wouldn’t have to worry over it all day. I could tell him to forget the whole thing or better yet, go directly to the nest! After all, there was another vampire who was actually missing and maybe the information would help the search. I could stop them from coming to the hotel entirely! Anything to keep me out of it and keep my relationship with Godric intact!
Those thoughts were running rampant through my mind as I answered quickly and the words rushed out of my mouth.
“Hey! I’m so glad you called back! I’ve changed my mind. I mean, someone should know, but…” I took a breath.
I needed to calm down and not sound so desperate. I took another deep breath and waited for him to say something, but I was met with silence on the other end of the line.
How to explain my sudden change of heart? I was sure he was surprised, but I also knew at any moment he would chuckle at my exuberance and tell me not to ’fret my pretty little head over it’.
He didn’t. He didn’t say anything.
Damn! I hoped he wasn’t too pissed, thinking I’d wasted his time. Maybe I could appeal to his ego a little and butter him up. If I said his idea was the most logical, then surely he would agree with me, right?
“I mean, I was just thinking it over and your other suggestion sounds like a better idea. Don’t you think?” I asked.
I realized he still hadn’t made a sound. I couldn’t even hear JP in the background. Maybe he had already gone to his bedroom or wherever he rested.
Surely, he wasn’t so angry that he just hung up?
“Are you still there?” I asked.
I looked at the phone to see if the call was still connected. That’s when I noticed it was coming from a Private Number and somehow I knew it wasn’t Russell on the other end of the line.
“Who is this?” I asked barely above a whisper as I felt the shiver run down my spine.
No response was given. It was starting to piss me off. I took a moment and pulled up my big girl panties.
“Whoever you are, you have the wrong number! I don’t know who you were trying to call or what you think just heard, but it wasn’t what you think and you need to forget whatever you think it was!” I snapped.
Even I knew I wasn’t making any sense. Worse yet, I could both feel and hear the tremble in my voice, despite my bravado. My body was shaking, and I hadn’t even noticed until I heard the click.
The line went dead.
Aurelia Gliwiski as Chelsea ‘Cricket’ Kerrigan
Alexander Skarsgård as Eric Northman
Allan Hyde as Godric
Ewan McGregor as Russell Edgington
Thanks for reading!
Time to feed the muse…please review!