I was staring at Sookie Merlotte’s headstone.
I was no longer bloody, nor weakened. The clothing I was wearing was of finest silk, and I felt windblown, and lethargic.
It was nearly dawn.
I touched the leafy plant I remembered and felt a warmth pass into my fingertips.
Was this a memory? It did not appear so, and I was sure I was not dreaming.
The cluviel d’or had deposited me in front of Sookie’s grave on the night I had first seen…
A sweet melody floated toward me and I turned to find Anabelle walking in my direction, carrying her little bundle of gardening tools.
I ached at the sight of her. Her lovely blonde waves cascading down her back. The wayward strands falling into her face. Her smooth, tanned skin taught over impossibly lovely features.
I knew her golden eyes were cast down to her little feet, but I wished she would turn them up to me just once more before I said goodbye forever.
My skin prickled as the sky lightened to a dusky pink. I would soon burn. I raced away toward the Compton house, I did not have time to dig.
I chuckled as I settled into the space below the floor. I was ‘squatting’ once again. I would still make Compton an offer of this house, but perhaps I would burn it down as Pamela suggested. It would prevent Bill from returning and keep him from discovering the treasure just a mile from his ancestral home.
Yes, that seemed wise.
I would have to inform my child when I rose that we would no longer be seeking revenge on Oklahoma and Nevada.
Could I tell her I’d already had it, but reversed time to right it all?
It would be amusing, but unwise. I would tell her I no longer required the satisfaction. It was not a lie. My only desire was to go far from there quickly.
We would be leaving Anabelle Sookie Merlotte to her own life now. Perhaps she would spend her days in the eternal sunshine she had spoken of, and never again know the sorrow of the setting sun.
She would be cared for by the Prince of the Sky, and exalted by her people as the magnificent princess I knew her to be.
The image of her bloodied and dying face floated to the forefront of my mind.
Yes. That was best.
I let the day take me.
I called to my child the next night. I did not expect her to finish procuring the schematics for Freyda’s compound until the following evening, but it did not matter any longer. I would look on her unmarred face and body, and embrace her that night. I wanted to banish the nagging fear for her safety as soon as possible.
Everything I loved and cherished would have been taken from me.
I would never allow that again.
Pamela and I would go to Europe as I had planned to do with Nan. She would be surprised, pleased with, and possibly suspicious of the notion, though she would not question my motives. Even vampires did not always feel the need to look a gift horse in the mouth.
I went once more to Sookie’s resting place and sat in stillness for a time. It briefly crossed my mind that I should like to have the package from the safe deposit once again, but was unsure whether it would still be there. I could not guess how different events would be. I vowed to check before we departed.
I would not regret anything I left there, I knew this as surely as I know when dawn approaches, with the exception of the golden beauty living in the little farmhouse east of me.
My legs carried me to said farmhouse before I knew what I was about. Warm light spilled invitingly from each of its aged windows. A little golden head bobbed from the kitchen into the living room. I smiled. If I had had breath, it would have caught.
For the second time, on exactly the same day in time – though technically weeks apart – I found myself knocking at the back door and retreating to the shelter of the trees. At least this time it had been deliberate.
I wanted to see her face one last time.
It would be enough.
I would see her whole.
It would be enough.
It had to be.
She opened the door and looked up with eyes of familiar grey-blue. It was over. She was no longer a danger to herself. She carried no burdens of ancestral pain, nor guilt, nor love. She could be her own.
She looked around, scanning the tree line intently. I moved deeper into the shadows. I could not let her see me. I knew she was looking for her flamboyant cousin. I was amused at her determination. Instead of bellowing into the night, she approached the woods, still searching.
A passing breeze picked up her scent and brought me the finest gift I could have asked for. Her perfume would be with me forever in memory.
“Eric Northman, is that you out there?”
This was not Sookie. I knew this. I had been not an hour before looking, myself, at Sookie’s grave site. This was my Anabelle, with Sookie’s eyes, and no supposed knowledge of my existence. Perhaps she had been reading her Sookie-Book and made a highly unlikely, completely coincidental guess?
Looking dejected, she turned her back to me and walked slowly back to her house. When she reached the bottom stair of her porch, she paused. “I love you.” It was said so low only a vampire could have heard.
I was behind her and folding her into my arms in an instant, all my resolve be damned.
She wept and wiggled in my arms to face me. She threw her arms around my neck and crushed her deliciously soft lips to mine.
I swept her into my arms and sat upon the stairs as I kissed her. I kissed her, and kissed her, and kissed her until she pulled away from me, gasping for breath. Then I kissed her neck, and shoulders, and delicious little clavicles, and arms, and hands, and each joint on each finger.
She giggled and it sounded like divine music.
“How?” I asked between kisses.
She laughed and grinned at me. “We had an angel on our side.”
“I have never been a Christian, Anabelle.”
She laughed again and I let the matter drop. I had much better plans for her lips than speech.
“Anabelle, invite me in.” I rubbed my cheek against her shoulder and ran my fingers through her hair, wafting tiny explosions of her fragrance in my direction.
I growled, eliciting tinkling laughter again. I’d never tire of making her do that.
“Well, you have been a very bad vampire, and very bad vamps are usually sent to bed with no supper.”
I kissed her where her neck joined her shoulder, then ran my fangs over it so lightly she shivered.
“Anabelle, invite me in.”
More giggling. “Mister Northman…”
I growled again.
“Won’t you please come in?”
Without further ado, I threw her over my shoulder and heard peals of laughter as I carried her into the house in which I had last set foot over a century before.
Nothing inside looked the same but a few shabby furniture items, the hearth and the aged wooden floors.
She had a fire burning and I set her down before it. I plucked the pillows from the couch and picked up an impossibly shabby and hideous quilt.
“It’s too hot for that!” she scolded. “Come back to me already!”
I tossed the quilt from me and was kissing her belly before she could blink. Her hands wound into my hair as I move slowly upward.
I nipped lightly at the bottom of her breast and she shivered.
“What happens now?”
I kissed the insistent little triangle poking up through the shirt-fabric separating us.
“Shall I show you, my love? Or would you like me to describe the ways I wish to make love to you? I plan many.”
She groaned and leaned her head back. “Oh, God! I mean, nothing has changed, but everything has. I’m still supposed to go be a priestess and keep the light in Fae.”
“You what?” I drew back slightly to look at her beautiful blue eyes. I would always remember the way they had once shone like sunlight on water, but these eyes meant she faced no danger and I would cherish every look.
“Oh, yeah. You weren’t with me then, were you? You know, I’m sorry I left, right? I know it was the worst thing I-”
I put my finger to her lips.
“It never happened, my love.”
“Anabelle, we can only learn from our mistakes. We are fortunate that we did no lasting damage. We can only move forward armed with greater wisdom now.”
“I love you.”
I kissed her lips softly.
“And I you. Tell me about the light in Fae.”
I let my hands wander around her body as she spoke of meeting her cousin while her guard slept (I did my best to check my temper at this) and his plea for her to return to the fading plane. She told me of the importance of human fairy hybrids and their inability to use the essential spark and the use of such beings to sustain the magic of the land.
“So I’d have to go and live there and pray like always, and stay a virgin my whole life. It would have been forever if Niall had been able to whisk me away when we first met. Being immortal would have been awful then. I’d’ve just gone on indefinitely with something missing and I’d never have understood it.”
“What is your…expectancy now?”
“You mean how long am I gonna live?” She giggled. “A very long time. Not nearly as long as you, but a very long time nevertheless so long as I don’t get sick or hurt.”
I re-buried my face in her neck, busying my lips and tongue and teeth.
“Guh… Um… So… Niall’s still gonna… just, wait a sec… expect I go and do this.”
I pulled back and grinned at her. She reached up and touched one of my throbbing fangs.
“Do you wish to go and spend your life in prayer, Lover?”
“Nope. Not really. No.”
“Then we must see to it that when he comes for you, you will not be a virgin.”
She giggled, but it was short-lived, and she cast her gaze downward.
“You cannot just tell the prince about your wishes?”
She fidgeted uncomfortably and looked away again. I turned her face back to me by guiding her chin with my finger.
“You are worried he will forsake you? What is this look?”
“Something like that. I don’t like it when people are mad at me, but I’m also determined to stay… with you.”
I kissed her hard then. I pulled her body against my own and felt her heart beating like a drum. She moaned into my mouth. I moved down her chin to her throat and the delicious hollow at its base. Tiny beads of moisture were gathered there and I licked them greedily.
“Why do you want to stay with me, Anabelle. Tell me.”
I kissed a trail down to the valley between her heavenly breasts.
“Tell me, Lover, and I will make it so.”
She moaned again as I moved a hand between her legs caressing the inside of her thighs very lightly.
“Tell me what you want,” I commanded, rocking my hips against her heat.
“I…Oh, I want you to… make me yours. Now.”
I let my hand move the rest of the way to her center, teasing her wetness through the fabric of her panties. She let her head roll back and moaned loudly before bringing it forward to chase my lips again.
“Is that all you want, my love?”
She groaned and threw her head back again. I withdrew my hand and she whimpered softly.
“Anabelle, look at me.”
She raised her head and met my eyes.
“Is that all you want? To be mine?”
She shook her head and closed the remaining distance to kiss me as she whispered, “I want you to be mine too.”
I was lost.
I spent the next few hours gently exploring every inch of my lover’s body, so utterly right and familiar, yet all of it new and uncharted.
We eventually moved to the comfort of her old four-poster bed in the bedroom where I had so many happy memories and together we made many more.
She was mine, as I was hers.
I did not care where we went. I would not care what we did. So long as she was mine, I would always be home.
Thank you so much for going on this journey with me! It’s my first fanfic and I’ll always be in awe of the support I’ve been given as a writer from the people in this fandom. I can’t tell you what a pleasure it is to share my passion with so many other talented people and I’m honored that you stuck with my story to the end. Thank you for keeping the Fandom alive and giving lifeblood to creativity.
Your support means everything.
Keep howling at the moon,