**A/N: This is the last Part of The Fourth Night. As such, it’s not as long as the other Parts because it *is* the last part. Enjoy!**
At a little before 4 a.m. that morning, Eric and Godric came straggling back home.
Eric gladly noted the difference in their demeanor from when they’d left so much earlier in the evening. Then, given their first destination, they’d both been revving up what they’d laughingly called in the past their “stoic vampire mode”, but thankfully now only the good humor from the shopping expedition remained which boded well for his Maker.
Since his arrival Godric had seemed fine, but he knew that wily old bastard and so he’d been keeping a surreptitious eye on the old man’s mood just to be sure. Now that it had finally dawned on him that something actually could happen to his favorite antique vampire, he was on his guard.
Memory of when he had first realized that …something was going on with Godric still sent a shiver down his spine.
As they turned onto the road leading to the house, Eric had to smirk.
While the natural grace and ease with which Godric had welcomed not just him but the telepath into his home was gratifying, more than that it provided the son with the perfect way of keeping a literal eye on the fader.
Hi, dad…here to keep an eye on your old ass so now’s the time to clean your room of any notions you might have of meeting either sun or stake in any realm…grounded if you try anything…no more Tina for you! *pfft* If things hadn’t worked out the way they are…would’ve had to hire babysitters…vampire sitters? Someone needs to keep an eye on that old fart.
Eric mentally sighed. Despite the fun he’d had cavorting in the mall, his own mood had somewhat fallen. While he was thankful that his instincts had alerted him that something was up with his Maker, he knew how vampires viewed time. The situation could reach critical 50, 100…hell, even 200 years from now. He couldn’t risk presuming that anything was fine and fucking dandy just because of one entertaining evening out.
It didn’t help that Godric was a fantastic, fabulous faker when he wanted to be.
Wily little fucker…still needs to eat more…needs more hobbies, too. Do vampires need fresh air and exercise? I should ask him… He definitely needs a girlfriend. Yup, daddy needs a girlfriend…or a boyfriend…or both…! Why not? Hey, maybe we could double-date! Oh, Sookie, wanna go to the movies with me and daddy and his boyfriend and girlfriend? You can have popcorn! Yeah, like she’d go for that…oh, I don’t know…maybe she would… I should ask. Wait, gotta hook pops up with…ah, we’re almost home!
Despite the short amount of time he’d spent in his Maker’s not so humble abode, he had to admit that the place already felt more like a home than his residences in Louisiana ever had. And there weren’t any spiders, either…well, that he’d found.
He should probably check a bit more closely…they were almost as wily as his Maker…
There were still a few more things he had to do before he could consider himself “settled in”, namely recalling Pam, finishing the lingering chaos…chaoses…at Fangtasia, and meeting with Godric’s “King Texas”…at least the first two bits were but the work of a night or two.
Pam can take care of herself, of course…saw to that myself. The situation with the Queen and her Minions – “The Queen and her Minions” – failed band name if I ever heard one – is definitely still too volatile. She needs to get her ass home as soon as possible.
Margo’s reps…pick up the trash tomorrow…one bit of bloated chaos down…surely the Berts will vacate the premises by then, poor oafs… What the fuck to do about Warm Piss? Gad, Pam and her so-called humor…needs her own stand-up show… Don’t care about the money enough to risk her having to wait for the bastard to show. Should have told her to send his cock when she suggested a finger. Stupid fuck. Not too many loose ends, actually…may release the fabulous Lorena and Lorena 2.0 early so Thalia can play early…spray down the basement early…get Pam home early…
But… Fuck. Still haven’t solved the mystery – who the hell is killing fangbangers? That Jason kid is her brother…
He contemplated having Pam glamour the witless local badges into believing the Disco Triplets, and he had to snicker at the description, were responsible, but he reluctantly shoved the thought aside. Not only would that leave the bastard responsible loose, it would work against vampire relations with humans.
Besides, if they caused future trouble with Sookie, he had a sneaking suspicion Godric would gladly but them down.
Maybe daddy just needs to murder more… A good, messy rending always did brighten his night…even better if he thought they deserved it for some reason…
Mainly, however, he just needed Pam to finish up her duties and get her ass home.
Oh, and figure out what the hell is up with the Broders…poor bastards…
Odd how I haven’t heard anything from the teenage drama Queen…ah, royalty, always living on their own time. Hope King Texas isn’t an ass…Godric wouldn’t still be here if he were…but there’s no way Sookie’s ready for any kind of official introduction yet.
Would she “howdy” the king? I can see her “howdy’ing” His Majesty…and knowing her he’d probably like it…bet she’ll call him KT… Wonder if he has any cats? She and Godric would both like that. With my luck it’d be a yappy little fuzzball… Wonder what Sookie did while we were gone? Those Were women had better have treated her well. Godric wouldn’t have hired in anyone who wouldn’t, though, fussy as the old man is about such things…much as he’s likely paying them they’d best be worth the money…
Both had been having such rare fun in the mall that neither had noticed how much time had slipped away. Thus, when they entered the house laden with shopping bags of all sizes – most of them, Eric pointedly noted to himself if to no other, being Godric’s, both had been surprised to discover that Sookie, being the mortal creature unaccustomed to the night life that she was, had already retired for the evening.
Vampire hearing quickly zeroed in on the somnolent sounds of two Weres and a part-fairy softly whuffling into their little pillows.
Both vampires’ expressions fell.
That the hour was growing so late and that Sookie might therefore already be in bed hadn’t previously occurred to either of them.
Well, fuck… Fuck Pam’s over-fucked fucking duck. Of course she’d be in bed by now! Damn sun…lucky pillow… Oh wait, what’s that?
Suddenly all the bags, most of which still being Godric’s…of which most were decidedly pet-related…landed on the floor when both vampires simultaneously spotted an envelope tapped to the door leading down to the vampires’ “lair”.
Eric just might have silently snorted when he recalled Sookie’s term for the vampire level of the house but definitely huffed when his exasperating Maker managed to grab the intriguing object before he’d even thought to move.
Still damn quick for an old bastard…
The old man’s smirk wasn’t appreciated, either, when he stopped Eric’s progress with that look.
“I wonder what my little house guest has to say,” he teased. “I’m fairy curious…”
The demented twinkle in the oldster’s eyes as well as the spike of delight he sensed stayed the Viking’s hand, though, and instead of huffing in annoyance (as if the other vampire couldn’t sense said annoyance), he chose to huff in humor.
And…maybe a little annoyance.
Consistency was key, right?
Eric leaned against the nearby wall and practiced his patience.
How slowly can he read? He’s definitely drawing this out on purpose…unless maybe we need to get his eyes checked? Do we even have eye doctors for the undead? Have to check with Ludwig, she should know… No contacts…too irritating, have to be just glasses. Hmm…sensing a new business opportunity here – eye doctors for vampires, glasses ready in 3 minutes or less – free bag of blood with exam! Nah…make it a free kitten…that’d get him in the door…
Seconds later, the ancient vampire chuckled at the contents of the begrudged letter…then as if to drive Eric crazy, he immediately chuckled again even more loudly. Before long the youngster theorized the evil bastard was absolutely doing it on purpose just to antagonize him even further.
Eventually, after what seems like hours and days and years, Eric finally got his hands on the goods.
Guys? We are vampires…how are we guys? When did we become guys? Is this good or bad? Well, there was that musical and she could be described, mainly by Pam of course, as a “doll”… doubt that’s it, though. Guys? Could be a penis thing…everything is about the penis, right? Right.
“I know we talked about me tweaking my sleeping schedule to mesh better with vampire hours and I did stay up as long as I could, but it’s right now 2:30 am and what with being a mere mortal and all I’ve got to go to bed soon.
I’m using toothpicks to keep my eyes open as it is!”
Toothpicks? In her eyes? That can’t be good…I sensed no pain from her earlier… Maybe it’s not a literal thing? Will have to check…
“The Were ladies here are being real nice to me. They’re great cooks and they ask me all the time about what kinds of foods I like and if I’m sure I’m not allergic to anything. Isn’t that sweet of them?
They’ve been great company and we’ve talked about so many things. They’re really friendly and they even don’t mind if I ask a lot of questions, like, did you know that fleas aren’t really a big problem for them? It seems that something about their Were-ness, something in their makeup actually discourages fleas from hanging around? They don’t have to take flea baths or wear flea collars or treatments or anything! I think that’s cool. I hope it wasn’t rude to ask them about that but they were real nice about it and I did wonder because Tina’s a flea magnet and I worried about her coming down with yet another case of the jumpy-bitey little bastards and I didn’t think Godric would want fleas in his house, either. But then I got to thinking that he did hire those Weres to work here so maybe fleas wouldn’t be such a problem but I thought I’d ask anyway.”
Eric looked up at his Maker who was quite suddenly taller than he was and realized with a bit of shock that he was on the floor – he’d laughed so hard that he’d forgotten that gravity existed!
Ah, fuck, Sookie? Fleas? She…she actually asked them about… FLEAS?? Oh, sweet Odin…fleas?? I can’t believe…yes, wait, yes I can, and I bet they thought she was cute and sweet while she asked. Flea collars? Oh, mercy… Wait…gotta tell Pam…she’ll hurt herself howling! Howling! I wonder if she asked the Weres about that…
“Anyway they’ve been telling me a lot about how things work in the Were world and other than weird meetings (I was good and didn’t ask if there was a lot of barking and butt sniffing like dogs do at these meetings) and strange rules about Pack leadership, they sound a whole lot like just regular, normal people. (Do you reckon they meet at dog parks? That would make sense, though, right? I should probably ask them about that.) Well, regular, normal people who can grow hair, claws, and tails at will (and at certain times of the month, but whatever).
I shouldn’t say “normal”, though, should I…I mean, they’re normal to them, right, just like I’m normal to me. Oh, well, at least I didn’t ask if they went around sniffing each other’s butts when they’re in human form, too.”
Eric clamped his free hand to his mouth to keep from howling too loudly. As several red tears coursed down his face, it occurred to him that maybe leaving Sookie alone with…well, anybody might not be such a great idea. Torn between fear and amazement, he bravely continued reading…
“I can’t truly hear what they’re thinking, not really, not unless I concentrate very, very hard and even then it’s more like scattered bits than actually hearing or seeing thoughts.
Anyway, Pam, Eric’s (your) child, called. She didn’t have a lot to say, really, just asked me how it was going and if I needed anything. She sounded kind of put out that I couldn’t think of a single thing I needed and I think she got kind of offended when I thanked her for all the stuff in my closet. I didn’t mean to offend her! But there’s just so…much…stuff in there! She seemed to perk up when I told her how much I liked all the pocket books, well, she called them “baaags”, that she’d gotten me.
But what am I supposed to do with 15 “bags”? In my entire life I don’t think I’ve had a grand total of 15 (15!!) pocket books combined! Lena (she’s the older Were lady) was really impressed with them and with the shoes. I couldn’t tell if it was the style or the leather. Maybe both?
But you guys, honestly, how many pairs of feet does Pam think I have? Just askin’ for a friend…”
Oh, Sookie, Pam thinks you’re a millipede…please stand by for deliveries… Now that you’ve expressed anything even remotely nearing appreciation for her shopping, you are so in for it. Wait, Pam called Sookie? Pam…called Sookie? Let me reread…yes, she did. Why?
“Anyway, we didn’t talk long but she was really nice. She’s funny, too. Well, you’ve heard how she talks about the “creatures” and the “vermin” that mill around in your bar! I don’t get the feeling she’s real impressed with them. At all.
She said that Sigebert and Wybert were still there so I told her to be sure and tell them I said hi. She didn’t say anything about when they might be going back home and since I know about how vampire hearing works, I didn’t ask, but isn’t it kind of weird how they’re still…there?”
Yeah, no shit, Sherlock…have a few questions about that myself. Maybe the food’s better than in Mommy’s Court? Scenery sure as hell is. And the smell. Wonder when we’ll hear from the inestimable Andre? Should post fliers – QSA Children’s Conference Nightly – Come One, Come All! From 11 to 4! B-y-o-bloodbags – Plus-1 allowed! Sun-free wi-fi-enabled rooms available upon demand; carpet cleaning extra. Anyway…
“Well, that’s about it. I kept my mind open to keep track of the people guarding the house. You’re right, Godric, it really is a good way to practice using this so-called “gift” everybody seems to either love or hate. I could tell when they were moving, when they came nearer to the house or moved farther away and that the sizes of their voids were different. It was an interesting exercise…went great with Sallah’s “famous” (her words) cookies and hot chocolate. Don’t let anybody tell you any different – there’s never a wrong time of year to have hot chocolate! Well, except maybe in the middle of summer. And fall these days.
Erm…not that you would drink it, but it surely smells nice, right?
Hey, if somebody drank a lot of hot chocolate or ate a lot of cherries or oranges or sardines or whatever, would it affect the flavor of their blood? If you guys feed off somebody who was drunk or high, would you get drunk or high? I wish you could at least drink things. Her hot chocolate really is the best.
And on that sad note, have a good rest of your night, guys. Sweet dreams!
And there she goes with the “guys” thing…really do think it has to do with penises… Hot chocolate…warm mouth…penis…! Fuck.
It was along about that time he realized that his Maker was snickering as he lugged most of the bags – which was only fair given that most of them were his anyway – down the steps to the vampire’s “lair”.
With a slightly uncomfortable grunt Eric rose from the floor with the comforting thought that floors were lovely things, always there to catch him…and that Sookie might not aught to be allowed in public.
He looked around, then, after quickly adjusting himself, and grabbed the remaining evidence of their shopping adventure and followed said Maker down said steps. The only thing that might have interested him above light-safe level of the house was asleep so there wasn’t any point in…oh, what was that word…
That’s it…dallying. Should I use that word more often? It has an odd cadence to it…dall-y-ing. But…thought the same about “frolicking” back in the ’60s and look how that turned out…
This is not an intermission.
Intermissions tend to occur more in the middle of an event (or, well, Part – those kind of somewhat maybe count as “events”, right?), not during the last third of the event (or Part).
This is the last third; therefore, it’s not an intermission.
He wasn’t pouting. Truly, he wasn’t.
As Eric sat on the side of his bed listlessly passing the bit of nothing he’d bought Sookie from hand to hand and back again, he couldn’t help being slightly miffed that he hadn’t been able to give it to her.
Miffed…yes, miffed is better than pouting. Because I’m certainly not pouting, no siree – Vikings don’t pout. Our swords are too heavy for that nonsense.
He’d gotten a kick out of her letter which now rested in the top drawer of his nightstand. Even if Godric had gotten his grubby little old hands on it first, it had been a very nice surprise, but it wasn’t the same…
So she’d gone to bed already, so what? It’s what mortals do. They rise with the annoying little birdies in the morning and then they snuggle up in their little beds and the lights in their little heads go out when the sun flees the night; it’s part of the mortal condition. They all suffer from it. Even I can somewhat remember how all that goes.
Ok, not really, but I can pretend.
I do remember being drunk, if that counts…of course it counts. Naturally I remember fighting…the general pain that comes from battle…even remember smelling a bit…stale at times. Surely if I try hard enough I could at least remember how sleeping works…has to do with birds and when the sun goes down. Will I get a cookie if I remember? Heh, maybe some of that hot chocolate she went on about. Hope Godric gives the one a raise.
Still…so what if she went to bed before we returned…it’s what they do.
It wasn’t as though the small gift now being lazily tossed between his hands was anything worthy of a big production, just a plastic bit of nonsense he knew would make her snicker much like the otherwise innocuous item she’d gotten him.
But he was.
But only a little…
The novelty and pleasure of being able to share humor, even if…ok, especially if…of the childish variety with someone felt much like a cheerful hearth fire seeping warmth into cold bare feet.
He could certainly share fun things with his Maker and with his child, did it all the time, in fact, but…
No matter how fluid his relationship with Godric might be, the ancient vampire was still his Maker, and no matter how close he was with Pam, she was still his child. The good times they’d all shared down through time were priceless, but there was always that thought in the back of his mind.
Oddly, it wasn’t there with Sookie.
Sure, in the vampire world she was his inferior, but it didn’t exactly seem that way when they were talking, did it?
Everyone in the vampire world was either a superior or an underling; free and easy friendships were painfully rare…just like fairies.
And apparently flea collars for Weres.
He sighed. Especially rare were the situations where truly silly little bits and pieces could be exchanged in the spirit they were meant without having to worry about hidden fucking meanings and agendas.
Odin knows the vampire world drowns nightly in hidden meanings and agendas. Not very much hidden about driving a dagger through someone’s shoulder, though you can’t do that but so often before they catch on…not too many hidden meanings in a bucket of tar dumped over someone’s head, either. Ants and honey… Ah, good times…
Got back too fucking late…didn’t realize we’d spent so much time at that damn mall… Never letting Godric near cages of adoptable rescue kittens again…
He wouldn’t be surprised if his Maker came home laden with carriers of newly-purchased rescue kittens at some point during the next couple weeks. The old guy had already bought enough toys to support his own colony. Hell, he was probably still in the den rifling through the bags…
And probably playing with some of the toys, too…be worn out before Tina ever sees them…should acquire a laser pointer…keep him busy for hours… Douse his bed in cat nip, see if he rolls around…
But we were back by 4:00 am…definitely early by vampire standards but not apparently by bothersome daylight-loving fairy standards, I guess. Seems she did extend her bedtime by a few hours, though…or tried to, anyway. Fucking daylight.
He huffed as he toed his shoes off.
Small-town girl…definitely living in a new world now… But…why would she even think to ask them to teach her about all-things-Were? I can envision all too well her asking the dogs exactly that… But…why would she want them to tell her…anything? And what else would they think she needed to hear? Ha ha, fleas…priceless! But really…what’s so interesting about fucking Weres? Oh, well, she’s as curious as that cat of hers… Would they teach her how to howl? Bah. Maybe being curious about unnecessary things is a fairy trait…
He eyed the gift…retribution…gift in his hand and didn’t bother to hide his grin as he imagined the look on the little fairy’s face when he gave it to her.
With another huff – he wasn’t too disappointed that he’d have to wait to give it to her, surely – he tossed the bit of plastic onto his nightstand, shrugged out of his clothes and proceeded to shower away Area Headquarters, malls, and various kittens.
Once clad in his favorite lounge pants and robe, he plugged his phones into their respective chargers and fired up his laptop to check messages.
He’d be seeing her that evening.
**A/N: And thus ends The Fourth Night. Soooo…what’d ja think?**