**A/N: It has been so long since I either read the books or watched TB for anything other than a bit-scene refresher that I don’t know if the berserkr gift/power concept came from CH, TB, or one of our splendid fanfic writers. I could well have read it in one of their stories back in the day when the Earth was still green. If it did come from a fellow fic-writer, please let me know who it was in the comments so I can give proper attribution to the first fic writer who invented it (that kind of thing is important to me). Now, onward! Allons-y! Other words meaning “Go! Read now”!!**
~~ UPDATE: It has been suggested by several kind and fantastic readers that the concept of Eric/berserkr could have come from either another fanfic writer OR from TB itself. (It makes sense for it to have come from both because, honestly, things usually have to be repeated for me to remember them…) If it did come from “The Norseman’s Women” by valyria (and it is entirely and happily possible, and this kind of situation is one reason I rarely read TB/SVM fics now that I’m in a writing phase) then I’ll gladly send a huge acknowledgment and a dozen virtual roses to valyria. If it did come from TB, I’ll (still) send them a snarl and a flying middle finger. To end, I’m making a big deal of this ‘here’ because, to me, attribution of plot points, ideas, and all that kind of thing IS important to me. ~~
A painfully nagging sense of fear and worry drew Sookie out of her nice, cozy nap. Just one more hour screamed her tired body but…Eric?
With a monumental effort she turned her ungainly body over and verified with her eyes what the empty space at her back had already told her – Eric wasn’t there. Earlier when she’d drifted off to sleep she’d been safe and sound in his arms, and while all hadn’t yet been right in the world, things had definitely been better than before.
Now, however, something was decidedly wrong. The chaotic emotions she was receiving from him via their recently somewhat-reestablished bond told her he was frustrated, angry, and worried to the point of being anxious.
Eric was never anxious.
With another heave she finished turning over then quickly thrust her heel out and stretched her calf muscle as hard as she could to belay a sudden but potentially horrendous lower-leg cramp…then cursed when she remembered that she still had up to another four months of that bloated, cramp-prone bullshit.
Eventually the cramp-threat passed and as she breathed a sigh of relief she tried to send Eric what concern and comfort she could. She was worried about him and more than a little curious as to what was going on but didn’t want to divert his attention if he was in the middle of something important.
Then she felt it – another vampire’s void, only it was very, very close. She suppressed a gasp and prepared herself to see who it was because it certainly wasn’t Eric’s void she was sensing.
Sure enough, a quick glance around the softly lit room revealed a strange female vampire standing just inside the doorway staring at her. The expression on the woman’s face was the perfect vampire facade of irritated boredom.
The all-too-familiar urge to pee chose that moment to strike almost as quickly as the near-cramp had, but unfortunately that was the main part of her normal wake-up routine and had nothing to do with the unsmiling presence still watching her.
Common sense told Sookie that if the woman had meant to kill her or harm her in some way, she’d have done so already since vampires with a fang down for murder were not known for simply standing around and staring at their prey while they slept.
With a grunt she hefted herself up on an elbow and held her hand out to the short woman with the dark curly hair. Her void felt old, really old. It reminded her somewhat of Godric, and the memory made her sad.
The woman tilted her head sideways in confusion but remained silent.
Sookie sighed. “Here, help me up. We have to go to the bathroom,” she explained as she patted her stomach. She barely refrained from laughing at the sudden profusion of expressions skating across the confounded vampire’s face.
“Well, come on, pregnant woman here, help me up,” she added with a tinge of impatience. She knew that at any other time she would have found the situation ludicrous but worry about Eric kept her humor at bay.
Obviously baffled, the petite vampire slowly walked forward as though assuring Sookie that she wouldn’t harm her… or wary that the blonde might do something strange herself. Sookie couldn’t tell which.
After gingerly assisting her from the bed, the vampire glanced toward the lit bathroom’s open door – the source of the soft light in the bedroom – in consternation.
At this Sookie had to laugh, albeit shortly.
“Thank you, but I’m fine now. I can handle the rest.” As she turned around, she glanced at the vampire’s face and saw that the woman was clearly relieved.
Sookie closed the door, and as she took care of her needs she probed the bond as best she could in an attempt to figure out what was going on with Eric. Something important had to be happening because she knew he wouldn’t have left her for anything less, especially after what they’d found out earlier that evening.
His worry deescalated to what she could only call “grudging relief”, but the anger and frustration were still as strong as ever. Eventually realizing that she’d find no answers sitting on the toilet, she quickly finished her business.
When she opened the door, she found the vampire standing in front of it, only a couple of feet away. The bafflement and consternation were gone replaced by the traditional if slightly irritated vampire facade once again firmly in place.
Taking the bull by the relieved horns, she nodded.
“Hi, I’m Sookie.”
With a slight nod, the woman replied, “Thalia.”
A small smile brightened the pregnant hybrid’s face. “Thalia. Eric’s mentioned you before. He spoke highly of you but he didn’t say much; you know how he is. I’m glad to meet you.”
Thalia gave Sookie a piercing look as though to judge the veracity of her statement, then nodded again.
Sensing that the woman wasn’t a chatterbox, she bluntly asked, “Ok, no offense, but why are you here? Where’s Eric? What’s going on?”
Thalia, standing stiffly a bit away from the deliciously-scented fairy-hybrid, replied, “Eric called me to guard you, so I am guarding you. That is all I know.”
Sookie snorted. At Thalia’s instantly irritated glare, she snorted again. “I’m translating that to mean you don’t feel at liberty to reveal all you know.”
For a split second Thalia appeared surprised but just as quickly smoothed her expression.
“It’s ok,” Sookie continued as she waddled toward the door. “I get it because I know how vampire politics can be. I’m just worried about Eric. I can feel him through our bond,” she added just in case the elder vampire had been on the wrong side of the .000001 percent chance of missing his scent in her blood, “and he’s frustrated and angry. Something bad had to have happened because he wouldn’t have left me otherwise.”
Thalia blurred to stand between Sookie and the door, then inclined her head in a way the blonde understood to mean that yes, something had happened. The vampire then indicated the door. “Where do you go?”
“Food and information,” she quipped. “I’m going in search of food, and information.”
Sookie caught what could only be a flash of consternation in Thalia’s dark eyes, and reconsidered her plans. Vampires as old as this Thalia were masters at preventing their thoughts and feelings from showing on their faces. She figured that the only reason she’d seen what she had so far was because her actions wouldn’t be considered normal given the situation – the element of surprise had broken through that usual mask vampires preferred.
Just because the woman hadn’t thrown down a clue didn’t mean Sookie couldn’t pick up a hint. Something bad had obviously happened, bad enough that Eric wanted her guarded even in this secret room. Information could wait if it had to but her baby’s safety couldn’t.
“But if something weird or bad is going on out there, bad enough for Eric to think I needed to be guarded, then ‘out there’ might not be the best place for the three of us, would it? I need something to eat and drink, though, and I’m really dying to find out what’s going on. Well, perhaps “dying” isn’t the best choice of words all things considered…”
The relief Thalia felt was immense and she would have been angry if she’d known how easily it showed on her face. She had heard more than she’d ever wanted to from other vampires’ gossip about this Sookie. Her heritage, her gift, and her bravery and helpfulness to other species were legendary, but so were her childish stupidity and foolish obstinacy.
That Eric had specifically asked it of her was the only reason she had agreed to watch over the hybrid.
Luckily it now seemed that the hybrid had either wised up or grown up, possibly both but Thalia wouldn’t bet on it.
According to the rumors and Eric’s own words and tone a short time ago, he was unnecessarily fond of the obviously breeding female, and had she been dead set against using her common sense the options for detaining her would have been insulting at the very least.
From what Thalia had overheard, ‘out there’ as the breeder called it was categorically off limits until an all-clear was given.
“I will call the manager who will relay your order to the…kitchen,” she replied, not noticeably tripping over the seldom-used word. She prided herself for keeping the relief from her voice.
As Thalia withdrew her phone, Sookie gave a thoughtful hum then held her hand out to stop her.
“The manager here would have to know everything that goes on in this place, right?”
Thalia nodded then waited to see where this was going. She could call that particular somewhat less annoying server in the bar, of course, but had thought going through a superior would better suit the status of Eric’s woman.
“Let’s just call it a hunch but maybe it would be better to not involve her or him. Is there someone else you can call?”
Without bothering to reply, Thalia dialed her phone. When the young vampire answered, she sternly commanded the server to “take her order”, then passed the phone to Sookie.
Instead of attending to the ensuing conversation regarding foods she neither recognized nor cared to, she instead listened to the couple softly chatting in the office above the room.
Eric’s newest progeny was safe, and on his behalf she was glad. Somehow and against her own wishes the youngling might have grown on her the tiniest bit, but she would never tell.
Eric immediately blurred to Pamela’s cell.
The first thing he noticed en route was the slightly sweet familiar scent of her blood mixing with the acrid stench of spilled Dae acid.
It nearly hid the harsh, burning odor of silver.
The instincts of the Maker – Pamela’s Maker – that still resided in the magic of his being resurfaced without his bidding, and to his astonishment their former bond exploded in full force.
She was proud, victoriously, magnificently proud, and she felt strangely honored, as well. She apparently sensed his coming, and her weakening presence bolstered fatally.
Her life was ending, finally ending.
In that instant and heedless of the gathering crowd, he blurred into her open cell. Spatters of Dae blood painted most surfaces in the small room and a confusing number of body parts were scattered about like so many pieces of confetti.
His former…his Child lay in the middle of the cell bleeding from too many wounds and too much silver poisoning to heal.
She raised contrite yet proud eyes to meet his as he knelt by her side.
“The bastards tried to take me out,” she whispered hoarsely yet somehow managing to sound insulted, “but I won.” She paused a moment to gather her strength before continuing.
“For your honor, and to atone for my sins, I won.” Her pride and her relief were clear to the one who Turned her.
A tear formed in Eric’s eye as he beheld his first progeny and felt the gut-wrenching honesty in her statements.
She truly had fought in his honor. She truly had spent her eternity in atoning for her failings.
He swallowed back the largest lump he’d ever had, and took what was left of her bleeding hand in his as he leaned over her prone body to look into her fading eyes.
“You fought well, my Child. You have done me proud.” With a soft touch and trembling fingers, he brushed the bloody hair from her cheek and forehead.
A beatific glow suffused her face as she heard and felt the emotions behind his words.
“Master, I…I have berserkr…,” she whispered as though she didn’t believe it herself. “I was…able to…call it, and…and it came over me.”
Eric gasped, then as the hot pride in his progeny welled up he sent it to her in screaming bursts. He had not thought to live to see the day…
Pamela moved her lips but voiced no sound, so he leaned closer to lessen her struggle.
“Watch…video,” she finally mumbled between lips now barely moving. “Information. Tell Sookie…sorry. Sorry.”
Her wan grip on his hand tightened very slightly.
Her grasp then loosened.
As the tear fell from his eye, another followed, then another. He took a deep breath, and prepared himself.
“In the name of my Maker, I forgive you. I am glad I Turned you, that I gave you my Blood, and that You Are My Child. As your Maker, I bid you Peace.”
As Eric spoke his final goodbye to his child dying before him, he sent her the strongest, warmest waves of love, pride, and peace possible.
She had fought and fought well in his name, for his honor, and she had even recognized her failings and used her life to right those wrongs as best she could. For those things she deserved to go to her Ending with nothing but love, pride, and peace in her fierce warrior’s heart.
Pamela breathed a last sigh of relief as she basked in the blissful comfort of her Maker’s pure love, and slipped away.
Eric felt the instant he no longer had this child, and the furiously grieving Maker in his soul howled in loss and rage.
That she in her misguided arrogance had deceived him, that she had betrayed Sookie, that she had betrayed him, no longer mattered.
All he felt was the Maker’s searing loss of a long-held child, and it scalded.
When Sookie appeared in a golden flash of light before him and knelt to take him in her arms, he questioned nothing, didn’t even see the look of utter shock on his beloved’s face, but held onto her rounded form for dear life, and grieved.
**A/N: ………………..sorry? A while back Pamela and I had a talk, and she convinced me that not only did she want to go out in a blaze of berserkr glory like Eric would, but that she wanted to redeem herself in her beloved Maker’s eyes as she did so. What do you think?**