Sookie stretched tiredly against the still body beside her. It was about 3:30 in the afternoon, and the sun still had a ways to go across the sky before it permitted her lover to rise. Getting up from the bed, Sookie went to the closet to pick out an outfit for her meeting with Angie’s coven. She wanted to look grown up to help hide the fact that she was barely literate, as well as, hopefully, distract from her social awkwardness. Figuring if she dressed like a normal, well brought up lady, that was what the witches would see her as, Sookie began rummaging through her closet on a mission.
A sudden, loud trill disrupted Sookie in her effort to pick out an outfit. Turning to the phone on the nightstand, Sookie reached over and answered it after seeing that the number belonged to Angie.
“Good morning, Sugar.” Angie laughed when Sookie answered. “We all still on for tonight?” she asked.
“As far as I know,” Sookie assured. “Eric hasn’t said anythin’ different about it.”
“Good! Stella is really excited to meet you, y’know?” Angie’s own excitement was clearly noticeable in her voice. “And the others are obviously really keyed up to meet you, too!”
Sookie giggled nervously. “I’m pretty excited myself. A bit nervous though,” she admitted reluctantly.
“Nothing to be nervous about. It’s not like it’s a formal shindig or anything. Just t-shirt and jeans, and none of that Yeah-Yes stuff,” Angie reassured, referring to Sookie’s occasional corrections of her speech.
“Oh, well, I don’t really do t-shirts and jeans.” Sookie giggled, ignoring the comment on her corrections. She wanted to learn to speak properly, even if it meant sounding even more awkward at first. “I like skirts and dresses better. I’m actually really lookin’ forward to summer ’cause Eric bought me a buncha pretty dresses, but it’s still too cool to wear them,” she explained. “I hafta wear leggin’s and those thick tights still when I wear skirts and stuff.”
Angie’s smile was easily heard in her voice. “Well, I was just calling to make sure you were still coming. Remember, Espress Yoself at 8:30,” she reminded one last time before they said their goodbyes and hung up.
Deciding to worry about her clothing later, Sookie left Eric’s chamber to get something to eat, as well as find something to occupy the 5 hours she had to kill. A good chunk of the time was spent looking at some of the magazines Pam had left out for her the previous night. Sookie still could not comprehend the “art” of some of the designers, but she just shrugged it off. As long as she was not the one who would have to wear the uncomfortable looking clothes and shoes, she was not about to complain about them.
As six o’clock began working its way around, Sookie went back to the bedroom to decide on an outfit at last. Grabbing a white shirt dress, a thick black belt, black leggings and the white knee high boots that Pam had insisted she needed, Sookie went to shower.
While she washed her hair, Sookie did not even jump when Eric slid the glass door open and stepped in behind her. His hands glided over her wet skin, cupping her breasts while her own hands continued to massage and lather her scalp and hair.
“You could not wait for me, Lover?” Eric asked as he pinched her budding nipples, finally earning a moan that he had known was on the tip of her tongue since he first entered the shower.
“I was too nervous about tonight to wait,” she confessed sheepishly before putting her head beneath the spray to rinse out the suds. Eric helped her rinse all of the soap clean before lathering his own head. “It was hard tryin’ to find stuff to do until I could even think to let myself start gettin’ ready.”
“I see.” Eric chuckled as he soaped up his body.
“Did you see what I picked out?” Sookie asked.
“What do you think?”
“You will look quite charming, but not overly mature in that ensemble. I think it is appropriate for one your age to wear such a thing,” Eric told her, though she could tell that he was not interested in her clothing, for the most part. The only time Eric ever commented on her outfits was either to tell her she looked “like a Goddess who had stepped from the heavens to grace his eyes”, or to say that an article of clothing would be, “inappropriate for His Sookie to be seen in”. Sometimes he would just say “lovely” or “scintillating”, the latter being a word she had yet to learn the definition of, but judging by the hungry look he gave her when he said it; it was definitely a good word.
“Okay,” Sookie began shaving her legs while the conditioner set in her hair.
Eric finished in the shower, and left to begin drying his hair while Sookie finished up. He could tell that she was a bit too nervous about the evening to give in to his advances, and he accepted that… For now at least. He could smell the tapering of Sookie’s menstrual flow, and he was determined to taste her one more time before it ceased entirely.
When Sookie emerged from the shower as well, Eric combed her hair and helped her blow dry it. Between the blood she had taken from him, and her new nutritional habits, Sookie’s hair had thickened and strengthened shortly after coming to live with him. The healthy glow of her golden hair had Eric wanting his fingers tangled in it as often as possible.
“You smell delicious, Lover.” Eric purred as he twisted locks of her hair between his dexterous fingers.
Sookie giggled, her face blushing both from the heat of the hairdryer as well as her lover’s words. Biting her lip, she just continued to let him dry her hair until he was finished. When her tresses remained only partially damp in spots, he turned off the appliance and spun Sookie in his arms.
“We still have another hour…” Sookie told him gently. Though Eric could tell that she was still just as nervous as before, who was he to decline if she wanted a distraction? “If you wanted to have a snack before we go out, that is,” she offered in a low, husky tone.
Eric growled low in his chest, and without a word lifted Sookie so that her bottom was on the very edge of the bathroom counter. Before Sookie could relax with her back against the mirror, Eric’s lips and tongue were against her sex, his tongue snaking inside of her hot channel and coaxing the blood from it.
“Ah! Ah, Eric.” She whimpered, rocking her head against the cool glass behind her.
Now his fingers were in her, rocking and twirling, plunging and wriggling within her sex. She could hear his growls of satisfaction and hunger while he feasted upon her. She mewled helplessly as he devoured her pussy with unrestrained vigor.
Sookie’s cries of pleasure grew louder and louder as Eric remained happily between her thighs, and she let loose an orgasm fueled scream as he finally used his free hand to stimulate her clit. Eric growled happily as he enjoyed his come and blood cocktail, rubbing his tongue relentlessly against Sookie’s pulsating, lower lips.
Eric drank for nearly an hour on Sookie’s nether regions before he finally decided he needed to let her finish preparing for the meeting. Her legs were almost entirely useless at this point, and Eric had to help her get cleaned up again and dressed. Without much pause, Eric was prepared to leave as well, still sucking on his fingers though the visible evidence of his activities had been cleaned away, the flavor still remained on his digits.
“Please stop lickin’ your fingers,” Sookie said embarrassedly as he opened the passenger door of his Corvette for her.
“Mm, but Lover, I cannot stop. They taste too good.” Eric wriggled his brows at her mischievously, but relented his finger licking as he drove.
Sooner than Sookie would have expected, they were pulling up to a small coffee house, and Eric was opening her door for her again. Rising from the car, Sookie smoothed out her clothing self-consciously, and took Eric’s hand gratefully. “Make sure to scan them for any sort of misgivings, Lover,” Eric reminded her as he opened the door to the coffee shop and allowed her to walk in before him, though never releasing her hand.
Angie’s coven had yet to arrive, so Eric ordered Sookie a coffee and smiled amusedly as she took a sip and lit up with that expression he so enjoyed seeing on her face. One of confused marvel. He loved that look because it was quickly followed by a feeling of excited novelty that he also got to experience through her.
“This is so good!” she told him happily.
“I will need to invest in a coffee maker then.” Eric chuckled as she took another deep swig from her cup while he ran his thumb in little circles along the pulse point of her wrist, keeping her mental white noise at bay.
“You are Sookie?” a voice, low and husky asked from a bit of a distance. Eric eyed the middle aged woman who stood about six feet away.
“Yes.” Sookie rose. “Are you one of Angie’s friends?” she asked carefully, blanching when Eric released her hand.
“I am Stella.” The woman nodded her head. “Angie is on her way now, but the few from the group who have arrived were a tad nervous coming any closer to your companion.” She eyed Eric, barely daring to trust getting any closer, and never looking him in the eye.
“Well, I don’t go anywhere without Eric.” Sookie frowned as she was finally able to focus on Stella’s mental narration. “So, if your coven is scared of him, then they won’t like me much.”
“I can tell that your companion is very old, and I cannot risk allowing him access to my circle.” Stella’s own frown showed regret. “I had hoped to bring you into our coven. It is true what Angie said about your aura. You’d make a very powerful witch. However, as I have explained, I cannot risk allowing one so deeply entwined with a nightwalker into our fold. I kindly ask that you think of Angie, and the danger you could be putting her in. I wish you the very best in coming to understand and control your abilities.” Sookie could hear the fear Stella expressed, about her worry for Angie, but mostly Stella’s worry about being accosted by a vampire. Stella had only seen one other vampire in her life, but only because her mother had pointed her out. Angie had said that the natural witch she had met had a supernatural companion, and it was easy to tell by Eric’s pale face and old eyes exactly what sort of supernatural he was.
Eric did not need the blood tie, nor did he need to see Sookie’s trembling lip to know that she was feeling completely discarded. After all of her years of feeling unloved and unwanted, abused and mistreated, it stung Sookie even harder to be rejected over the first being to ever care about her.
“For an alleged empath,” Eric growled deep in his throat, “you certainly enjoy destroying my lover’s self-worth.”
Stella squared off her shoulders and raised her chin with dignity. “It is not your lover that I am insulting or suspicious of.”
“When ya look down on Eric, ya look down on me.” Sookie steadied her voice, steeling her gaze from her seat, and Eric could feel her mustering every ounce of pride and strength she had to keep that voice firm. “If ya can’t trust him, then ya certainly can’t trust me ’cause I would do anythin’ he asks of me without question or glamour. So if ya suspect him of any misgivin’s, then yer certainly right not t’ trust me.” Eric petted Sookie’s hair gently, trying to ease some of the harsher emotions she was experiencing. “I’ll stay away from Angie. I promise ya that.” Sookie rose from her seat and inclined her head to Stella gently before walking towards the door. Eric could tell by which women shrank away, which ones were part of Stella’s coven, even without the smell of patchouli and fresh herbs clinging to their scent. Only, Sookie knew that they only blanched at their passing because Stella had told them exactly what Eric was before they could enter, and that they should fear him.
“Sookie-” Eric began, but was cut off by:
“SOOKIE!” Angie came running down the sidewalk towards them, out of breath. “Hey, sorry I’m late,” she panted. “Stella asked me to close up the shop for her- had someone to meet with before our circle gathering,” she explained. “What’s up? Where you going?”
“Your high priestess has made it abundantly clear that she does not wish for Sookie to socialize with your coven,” Eric snapped. “I would have appreciated a bit more understanding of my lover’s feelings before you invited her out to have her self-esteem trampled upon.”
“Eric, ya don’t have t’ get mad ’bout this,” Sookie mumbled. It was not the first, nor did Sookie believe it would be the last time people would shun her or turn away from her for one reason or another. In fact, she was more concerned about the fact that Angie’s own gift was being used by Stella and her coven to make themselves feel more “powerful”.
“Whaaat?” Angie looked positively confused. “Stella and the coven were saying how excited they were to meet you!”
“But did you tell them about me?” Eric pointed out.
“Well… I mentioned that she had a Supernatural companion… But I know how they get about vamps, so I kinda skirted the details,” Angie admitted sadly. “I didn’t think-”
“No, you did not,” Eric snapped.
“Listen,” Angie began beseechingly, “I swear, I never even thought they would push Sookie away. I didn’t believe that… That it would be possible for them to turn away a Sister in need. Sookie,” she turned her eyes on the telepath, “you can hear me, you know I’m telling the truth. Really, I want to help you. I want to help you. I know your vamp glamoured me to protect you, but I still trust you, even when it means trusting him, too. Please, give me the chance to prove it.”
“You let me meet Stella. Just like you said you would,” Sookie said firmly, but Eric could feel the pain that was making her heart thrum frantically in her ribcage. “You owe me nothin’ more.”
“Back so soon?” Pam’s bored drawl came from the living room where she was painting her nails a Mary Kay pink.
Eric explained the encounter with Angie’s coven leader, and Pam was downright annoyed. “Stupid witches. It sounds like their High Priestess is unaware of how good of a business partner a vampire can be for them.”
Eric nodded. “Indeed. Which makes me wonder of their authenticity. Angie claimed that Stella is an empath, but her interaction with you, Sookie, leaves me in doubt. Empaths are not usually hostile towards others because it only causes negative emotions to be directed towards them, which is not something an empath would want to encourage.”
“You think she was just a good reader?” Pam asked amusedly.
“Maybe not even that… However, Angie’s powers seem quite real. She recognized Sookie as a witch, as well as me as a vampire just by looking at us. That is quite a feat, even for a seasoned witch,” Eric said speculatively.
“Sounds to me like it’s a bunch of hippies using the only witch in the group as their poster child.” Pam shrugged. “Of course, you did say that the members of the coven all recognized you as a vampire,” she pointed out.
Eric made a dismissive gesture. “Lost children of the craft,” he grunted. “They could have had formal training, but no ability for it. They are probably a commune of powerless witches, or ceremoNiall practitioners rather than casters.”
“But can’t Angie tell they have no real abilities?” Sookie asked, her voice distressed. “She said I stood out, sure, but-”
“Do you not think that you stood out so brightly because Angie has been misled to believe that auras with the slightest extra glow to them were magical? If Angie received most of her formal training from Stella, then the little witch might be grossly under informed,” Eric cut her off to explain.
“Stella’s the only one with formal training. She tipped the other coven members off before she came into the coffee house,” Sookie admitted sadly. “She’s got a touch of empathy, weaker than Angie’s. You’re right. She’s using Angie as the “face” of her coven to draw in new members… Angie doesn’t understand it at all.”
“See? It is best that you not interact with them at all!” Pam flicked her wrist in a manner that seemed to illustrate how simple the conclusion should have been.
“Well, either way, it doesn’t look like I’m gonna get to learn to be a witch after all.” Sookie frowned.
“I wouldn’t hang up your conical hat just yet, my pretty.” Pam smirked. “Eric is quite well connected. I am sure he can introduce you to a tutor some time in the near future.”
“However,” Eric interrupted her, “I think you should learn how to be a normal girl before we focus so much attention on making it more difficult for you to blend into society.” He straightened up a bit. “Such as forming your basic education and skills. Besides, you still need to learn about interacting with vampires and how to fight. That is quite enough for one young mind to have to focus on at the moment, yes?”
“Yes, Eric.” Sookie sighed dejectedly. She was still disappointed about how her hopeful chance at obtaining a friend had been dashed.
Eric sighed at his lover’s sullen mood. “Sookie, there will be plenty of time to make friends. Once you are completely mine, you will have a very long, youthful existence ahead of you.”
“Besides,” Pam added, “humans do not make the best of friends anyway. By the time you get used to them, they die on you.”
“I’m human,” Sookie mumbled.
“You are more than that, Lover. Never believe anything differently.” Eric kissed her forehead. “Now, go grab your books and we will start your lessons for the evening before I must go about my Sheriff’s duties.”
Sookie rose from the couch to get the textbooks Eric had gotten her, and came back to the living room to begin her tutoring.
Eric spent two hours coaching Sookie on mathematics and history until he had to leave, and Pam took over her lessons, focusing on english and science.
After a half hour of studying, Pam finally let out an annoyed sound. “Are you still sulking over the wannabe witches?” she demanded.
“I just wanted to make friends,” Sookie moped quietly. “I get so lonely durin’ the day.”
Pam snorted. “You have your books! You are learning to read quite well, and soon you will be able to discover things for yourself. Once you have the basics down and we teach you to drive, you will be able to go out during the day while we rest. Be patient!”
Sookie nodded in agreement, but she was still not cheered up.
“Ugh!” Pam stood up sharply. “What do you want? Where can I take you, or what can I give you to make you less depressing!? This mood you are in is absolutely exasperating!”
Sookie shrugged halfheartedly. She had never really had any comforting rituals other than lying in the sunlight until she met Eric. Now-a-days, when she needed comfort, she usually made love with Eric.
“C-can I have a hug?” Sookie asked with her new and improved puppy dog eyes, but Pam groaned at the very idea.
“You are acting like an infant,” she ground out, but still closed the gap between them and held her arms open unenthusiastically. Sookie stepped into the circle of Pam’s unwilling arms and squeezed her tightly while Pam looked heavenward while her arms draped loosely around the girl’s shoulders and patted her back with an awkward and vexed hand. “There. Are you better now?” she asked dryly.
Sookie smiled slightly when she stepped back into her own personal space, and Pam took that as a sign that the girl was at least a little comforted.
“Humans,” Pam grumbled as she dropped back to the couch to continue Sookie’s lesson.
After another twenty minutes of Pam enduring Sookie’s wiping of stray tears, the house phone rang. Picking it up, Pam snapped, “What do you want?”
“This has got to be Pam,” a voice laughed. “This is Angie, can I speak with Sookie?”
“The witch that has left me in the company of a sullen woman all evening… So help me, Witch, if you make her cry again and I am forced to administer another hug, I will find you and kill you slowly,” Pam growled.
“Umm, none of that was on my agenda…” Angie replied tentatively.
“It is your witch.” Pam thrust the phone in Sookie’s hands. “No crying,” she ordered before leaving the den.
“Hello?” Sookie greeted carefully.
“Hey, Sookie.” Angie greeted just as nervously. “You implied that you wouldn’t call me again, so I decided to do it instead… I just wanted to tell you… Well, I’m leaving Stella’s coven. I’m a healer, and I don’t pick and choose those I help based on who they are or who they know. And I can’t be part of a group that does that. I know I’m not the wisest witch, and not even that well learned, but I still want to help you however I can, and a little is better than nothing, right?”
Sookie was quiet for a minute before replying, “If I didn’t want to learn about becoming a witch, would you still want to hang out or talk with me?”
“Of course!” Angie was surprised. “I just thought that you were interested after I told you that you were a witch. I thought we would be able to work on your telepathy at least.”
“I would like that, too. I just didn’t want to think that you didn’t wanna be friends is all,” she explained sheepishly.
“Sooks, we’re already friends!” Angie laughed. “Once you can handle your gift, it’ll just mean you can enjoy the company of friendship even more because you won’t have to listen to my every thought as well as listen to my blabber mouth.”
A tearful smile cracked Sookie’s lips, and she said, “I look forward to that.”
“Wait, Sookie, you’re looking forward to the future?” Angie feigned shock.
“I’ve had a lot more reasons to lately.” Sookie gave a watery laugh. “I have to get back to studyin’, though. I’ll call you tomorrow?”
“‘Til then, Sooks!” Angie hung up after that, and Sookie followed suit, turning towards the archway of the kitchen to find Pam again.
The vampiress was standing in the entrance, her stoic expression looking a bit forced. “Good, you have a friend now. So, get back to your book and tell me all of the proper nouns on page twenty-four.”
I am absolutely shocked that an attempt on your existence was made. Per your request, I have assigned André to find an appropriate candidate to investigate the matter. The use of a Were to attempt the assassination is definitely grounds for use of an Investigator. André has already chosen William Compton to be used in this role, and he will be arriving in two weeks. I find this particularly interesting as Compton is normally part of my department of procurement. Is there something I should be aware of, Northman? Keep me informed… And keep an eye on Compton.
Delete this message,
H.R.H Sophie-Anne Le Clerq~