It’s the thought that counts. Unfortunately for Eric, Sookie doesn’t take kindly to what he’s been thinking.
A parody written for hisviks
Tapping a perfectly lacquered fingernail against her lower lip, Pam tilted her head to one side and stared at the monstrosity in front of her, not quite sure if she was amused or offended.
And it took quite a lot to offend Pam.
But sure of one thing, she looked at her Master and mused, “What’s wrong with poinsettias? It is nearly…what did you call it? Oh yes, the pagan holiday of consumerism and ill-will towards others. I’m sure your bonded would appreciate those more than she will this gift.”
“What do you mean?” Eric asked, never taking his eyes off of the paperwork that littered his desk.
Running a bar and an Area was a lot of work.
“This…” she gestured at the vase on his desk, ready to be delivered to her little telepathic friend by the next day, and carefully explained, “Isn’t prudent.”
What she left out was that his bonded was a prude.
“Sookie will love it,” Eric argued. “They are flowers. Women like getting flowers from their men.”
Smirking at his capitulation that he did indeed belong to her, Pam wisely didn’t point it out and only said, “But these…flowers could be considered by some,” – silently adding, ‘some named Sookie’ – “To be vulgar.”
“Nonsense,” Eric dismissed with a wave of his hand, inadvertently scattering the papers from his desk and onto the floor.
Huffing with all of the veracity of a backwoods telepathic waitress Pam silently noted, he leaned over and grasped at those he could reach and then used his booted foot to pull the others back towards him, while saying, “They are the same flowers portrayed in the Georgia O’Keeffe paintings. They’re classy.”
“Mmm…” Pam sounded.
Like a backwoods telepathic waitress?
“Eric,” she pleaded more than stated because when his gift went over like Dracula attending a Fellowship of the Sun church and managing to fart in it, it would be Pam who would have to suffer his wrath.
So she used the same tone as when she was explaining the simplest of things to the likes of Ginger – or Bill – and said, “These flowers look like a vagina.”
The things she reduced herself to for her Master…
“I know,” he smugly declared, as though she – Pam – was the idiot in the room.
Then straightening the piles of papers on his desk – into all of the wrong piles, Pam sourly observed – she glared at the thought of having to stay late to fix her ‘system’, while Eric went on to say, “All of those books she reads – the ones with heaving bosoms and pulsing manhoods – they all refer to a woman’s genitalia as her lady garden.”
Then meeting her eyes – his looked confused over her narrow-eyed stare at her now messed up system of paperwork – he added, “This is code. Get it? A flower. That resembles her lady garden. It is so she will know I am thinking of her garden of eatin’.”
The TruBlood Pam had unfortunately just tipped into her lips spewed right back out, once and for all making her system of paperwork utterly unsalvageable, and she looked at her Maker, wondering if he had somehow been spelled with an Idiot Incantation.
“It is a vampire’s version of eating salad,” Eric smiled, unaware of his progeny’s thoughts. “That is where the phrase ‘tossing salad’ comes from. I coined it.”
Slowly, deliberately, carefully, she hedged, “One. You know that’s not how it’s pronounced.”
“I have been speaking English for longer than there has been an England,” he declared, with another wave of his hand. “And I took a class in the seventies.”
Only the mixture of synthetic blood and her saliva now soaking through the pages kept them from being blown across the room again, but still she couldn’t leave worse enough alone and said, “It’s called the Garden of Eden.”
“Articulate, Pam,” he instructed. “Ea-tin.”
Then tipping his head back and sticking his chin out, he looked like Luciano Pavarotti preparing to take the stage at Milan’s Teatro alla Scala – and surprisingly sounded like him too – when he sang out, “Tah…tah…tah. Tin.”
Pam swore, if her Master segued into talking about ta-ta’s, she would toss Bill Compton’s salad.
“Speaking of ta-ta’s,” Eric grinned. “My lover’s are exquisite.”
Deciding that swearing an oath to no one but yourself didn’t really count, she tried to bleach the image of tonguing Compton’s constipated hairy asshole from her mind.
At the same time, she ignored her Master’s impromptu mimed juggling act, while getting back on track, by saying, “And two. You know that the first half of the last thing you said is impossible and the first first last thing you said, that’s not what it means.”
“Ginger!” he bellowed out, completely ignoring Pam’s words, which – quite frankly – had confused even Pam.
When the overly glamoured waitress appeared, she had only completed half of the bow/curtsy thing she always performed for him, before he pointed at the direct cause for Pam’s first ever headache the following night and said, “See to it those are delivered to Sookie by noon tomorrow.”
“Yes, Master,” Ginger obediently replied, taking the vase in both hands and holding it away from her, as though the blooms could possibly queef in her direction at any given moment.
Passing by Pam, she was almost certain she heard the woman mumble under her breath, “Pussy willows?”
If only, Pam thought.
The following night…
Hearing the unexpected booming voice of her Master, bellowing out of the back offices, it caused her ass to lift slightly off of the throne it had been perched on.
And possibly, she’d queefed.
But Pam would never admit to such things – to herself or to anyone else – so she schooled her features as she rose from the chair and obediently answered her Master’s call.
Finding him in his office was no surprise.
Although, finding nearly every inch of him covered in the remnants of his gift – as though he’d been beaten with Georgia O’Keeffe’s version of a whomping pussy willow tree – more than a queef threatened to leave her body.
However, she managed to stifle her giggles because Pam never giggled – when witnesses were present – and opened her mouth, only managing to get out, “I…”
But Eric cut her off by warning, “Tread lightly my child, for if the next words you utter are, ‘told you so,’ I swear to you, I will go out and make another child. A female child, with whom you will have to compete with for my attentions. She shall be fierce and loyal.”
Deciding she wasn’t all that worried because her Master’s bonded would be much more fierce if Eric went out and ‘murdered’ yet another human – a human woman at that – Pam only rolled her eyes, as she drolly replied, “And tell me, oh master of his own vagina monologue, have you already chosen who this fierce and loyal warrior shall be or will you be holding a contest?”
Side-eying her Eric straightened up, causing even more torn petals to fall from his body and litter the floor at his feet, brusquely replying, “Of course I have already chosen her. Holding a contest would just be asinine.”
“Then what is her name?” Pam asked, zeroing in on both his eyes and their bond.
So she knew he was full of shit when his eyes darted to stare at nothing on the wall, while he shrugged with his answer of, “Karin.”
“Karin,” she deadpanned. “I am quaking in the boots I am not wearing as we speak.”
“Because I have not told you her full name,” he argued. Then clearing his throat, he attempted to sound menacing when he clarified, “Karin the Slaughterer.”
“You’ve been watching that insipid WWE on pay per view again, haven’t you?” she accused.
There would be no point in lying. Even if she couldn’t tell through their Maker/child bond Eric wasn’t telling the truth, Pam was the one who paid his cable bill each month.
Knowing he was caught red-handed, he shrugged with a smirk and admitted, “UFC. It is like the human’s version of pit fighting.”
Clearly caught up in his excitement, he animatedly exclaimed, “The cartilage in their ears becomes permanently damaged from being pummeled.”
Then assuming a boxing stance, Eric threw his fists and feet wildly through the air, before spinning around to face his progeny again and exclaimed, “They mushroom into a deformity they call cauliflower ear!”
Holding her hand up, she shook her head and stopped him from telling her any more.
Pam had had quite enough of hearing her Maker speak of anything that had to do with salads.
Three nights later, Sookie had been standing in her living room eying the Christmas tree she’d just dragged into the house and was trying to decide where it should go, when it hit her.
That telltale happy feeling that told her Eric was close by.
But after his last stunt, she wasn’t all that happy with him and thanks to the vampire blood in her body, she knew before opening her front door who she would find standing on the other side of it.
The Bearer of Brash Gifts, formerly known as Mr. Highhanded.
Sookie had had a sneaking suspicion it had been Eric who had sent her that nasty flower when she’d been in the hospital, after Rene’s attack back when she’d still been with Bill. But being sent a dozen of them had been more than her blazing red cheeks could handle.
Even the poor kid who’d gotten stuck delivering them thought there probably weren’t that many vaginas in full bloom in the Labor and Delivery ward.
Why couldn’t he have sent a nice poinsettia?
What was wrong with the classics, like a dozen red roses?
But then again, maybe Shakespeare had gotten it wrong because she could testify that a rose by any other name would not smell as sweet.
She didn’t care what it actually smelled like. Nothing with that name could ever be called sweet.
Because Sookie had googled the outlandish flowers and found their given name was even more offensive.
That was their name.
It was a spot on description too.
So she had narrowed eyes when she whipped her front door open, but they widened when she saw what Eric was holding in his hand.
“A cat?” she questioned.
Silently nodding his reply, Sookie could tell from their bond that he wasn’t being entirely truthful.
So the day ended in ‘Y’.
And as much as she normally loved cats – she missed her Tina terribly – there was something decidedly off about the cat he was holding.
It was a weird brown color and it looked like someone had taken a weedwacker to cut the fur around its face. So it made it all the easier for her keep her anger, when she glared at him and asked, “Are you sticking with a theme?”
“What do you mean?” Eric asked, looking adorably confused and reminding her of her amnesiac lover.
Which made it harder for her to stay mad at him, but even so, she managed to grit out through her teeth, “Don’t make me say it.”
“Say what?” he purred, which only lent credence that his gift giving theme of late was feline in nature.
And au natural too, if you wanted to get technical.
“I am afraid I do not know to what you are referring,” he bullshitted. “You know that English is not my native language.”
Waving her hand at him, she pshawed, “Oh please. You know exactly what I’m talking about. And you took a class in the seventies!”
“Thank you,” Eric answered in a way that – quite frankly – only confused Sookie even more.
So the day ended in ‘Y’.
Stepping into the house – because no matter how crude he could be, Sookie couldn’t actually bring herself to rescind his invitation again – Eric thrust the cat into her arms and pulled her down to sit beside him on the couch.
Unable to ignore it any longer, Sookie held the tabby up for inspection and seemingly nodded to herself, muttering out, “Well, at least he’s fixed.”
Eric’s single barked out laughter made Sookie jump – and the cat hiss – before he reined it in and schooled his features once more.
It only made Sookie more suspicious.
“Eric,” she glared. “What aren’t you telling me about this cat?”
“What is there to tell?” he asked with all of the innocence of a newborn baby Jesus in a manger.
But Sookie knew a tap dancing baby Jesus when she saw one.
Being the sibling of a modern day Fred Astaire, who could tap dance his way around the truth to anyone but her, the signs were obvious.
But before she could interrogate him any further, Eric managed to both change the subject and stay on topic by saying, “I have brought the suitable supplies to include a window seat, which I will install before I leave here.”
Then his eyes positively glittered, when he stared down at the cat and said, “I have been told cats love to lie in the sunlight.”
As though he could understand Eric’s words, the cat’s head whipped his way and he growled.
And being a spectator to it all, Sookie would have sworn the cat smirked too – only adding to its weirdness – before making itself comfortable by curling up on her chest and purring up a storm.
It was Eric who hissed then, grabbing the cat by the scruff of its neck and throwing it against the far wall, with Sookie yelling out, “Eric!”
But moving her eyes to where the cat had ended up on the floor to see if it was injured, watching it shake off its splat landing caused Sookie’s eyes to narrow again.
And then glare at Eric.
“Why does that cat have bangs?” she accused.
She’d known something hadn’t looked quite right to her when she’d first looked at it. But seeing what were undeniably bangs, swaying in the breeze she knew something was definitely up.
“Bangs?” Eric innocently tap danced, with his eyes finding his cuticles very interesting in that moment.
“Eric!” she repeated.
“Fine,” he huffed and grumbled in a low voice, “Perhaps I did not fully think things through.”
“What things?” Sookie groused in return.
“I may have visited your former witchy roommate,” Eric hedged.
So when he said nothing more, Sookie prodded him along with, “And…”
Speaking his next words in a fast paced clip, he answered, “And-I-may-have-had-her-turn-your-former-lover-into-a-cat.”
“Eric!” she yelled again.
It wasn’t the first time she’d ever yelled his name multiple times in one night, but it was the first time she wasn’t getting any enjoyment out of it.
“What?” he huffed and then shrugged his shoulders when he added, “It would not have had the same oomph if I’d had it done to the tiger.”
Then narrowing his eyes into slits, Eric added, “He is already a pussy.”
He admitted there was a theme.
But it didn’t matter to Sookie what he was trying to accomplish and she only glared back at him, rhetorically asking, “You want oomph?”
Before Eric could answer for the unanswerable, he found himself standing outside on the porch seconds later, with kitty Bill thrust into his arms and his invitation once again rescinded.
The following morning…
Sookie was running late for her lunch shift at Merlotte’s, but finding a box on her doorstep on her way out had stopped her in her tracks.
Eric had seen to it that she didn’t have to even try to imagine what horribly tasteless thing could be inside because the box wasn’t so much a box as it was a Plexiglas aquarium.
But still, she grimaced seeing a box turtle inside of it.
“He just can’t help himself,” she muttered to herself, wondering where his sudden fixation on her lady bits stemmed from.
First he’d gotten her aptly named flowers with huge hulking clitorises and then had Bill turned into a pussy cat.
Now he was giving her a box turtle?
Seeing a folded up piece of paper taped to the turtle’s back, she ripped it off and read what he had to say for himself.
I was remiss in trying to gift you with your former lover turned cat, but I hope you will enjoy your new pet.
His name is Eric.
Like your current lover, he is coldblooded, will live for a very long time, and has a hard shell. But on the inside he is quite malleable.
You are the only woman who has gotten past my hardened exterior.
Oh, and he likes to eat salad.
You know what I mean when I say this.
“Weird,” Sookie muttered, reading the letter three times, while wondering if Eric had known how she might misconstrue his words.
Shaking her head, she decided that he couldn’t because – taking a class in the seventies or not – sometimes slang went right over his head.
Like trying to sweep up broken glass with a broom, Eric wasn’t always up to the task.
And while she didn’t necessarily want a pet turtle, it wasn’t awful, even if she still suspected he was making some sort of reference to her box. So she picked up the Plexiglas aquarium he was in and carried him inside, figuring if she got sick of him she could always make herself some turtle soup.
But knowing she would need to stop by the store and pick up some salad, Sookie wondered if maybe Eric’s oddball wording had been his way of telling her she needed to eat healthier.
Deciding it was better to be safe than sorry, she tossed out the verbal equivalent of turning the deadbolt by saying, “That glorious ass of yours still isn’t welcome in my home, Eric Northman.”
That’ll show him she meant business.
Business that had nothing to do with her lady business.
Having stalked his lover’s house in the nights following the Compton catastrophe, Eric knew he was still in the dog house with Sookie over his pussy themed gifts, by the telltale glow surrounding her home that indicated his invitation to enter hadn’t yet been reissued.
So Eric thought long and hard over what he would give her next in his attempt at smoothing things over with his easily ignitable bonded.
But not having the first clue as to what she would secretly want – that woman kept more than just her former lover turned cat close to her chest – he decided to enlist the help of someone who had known Sookie for her whole life.
With it being a full moon, Eric had no choice but to seek out the bitten were-panther in Hotshot. Upon his arrival, the smell of panther piss had been nearly overwhelming, but Eric now had a better appreciation for Sookie’s relief over her mistaken belief kitty Compton had been neutered.
And he had appreciated her mistaken belief a lot already.
Quite a lot.
But with the various hovels empty of their inbred occupants, Eric had been forced to wait for their return. It was nearly three in the morning before the weres slowly made their way back to their compound one by one. But having been bored, in the meantime Eric had decided to set out the things he’d gotten for Sookie’s other pussy, having no need for them, nor any desire to return to PetSmart to get a refund.
He’d already gotten one too many stares when he’d returned to purchase Tortoise Eric.
The ten pound bucket of Scoop Away cat litter he’d poured into various spots had had a very negligible effect in disguising the odor of cat urine. But watching some of the younger weres pounce on the various cat toys he’d placed throughout the yards, he smiled seeing they were a big hit.
Still holding the wand of one of them, when Sookie’s sibling finally came into view, he held it up and whipped the feather tethered to the end by a string in his direction, while calling out, “Stackhouse!”
Like a moth to a flame, the elder Stackhouse sibling was immediately drawn forward. But tired from his run through the woods, he merely batted at it a few times before curling up on the carpeted window seat lying on the ground at Eric’s feet and mumbled out, “Whatchu want?”
Jason hadn’t liked the idea of his baby sister datin’ vampers, but now that he was half-Supe too, he figured he oughtta keep his trap shut about it.
But thinking of half-Supe made him hungry for some chicken noodle.
Or maybe some clam chowder in one a them bread bowls, like they do at Panera.
That was as good as a soup sandwich in his mind, so that made it half-soup.
Eric’s eyes glinted dangerously at the Stackhouse boy, unsure what to make of the giggle/gurgling sound coming from him. But knowing Sookie would be very upset with him if he damaged her brother – even more so than he was already naturally damaged – Eric ignored it and stated, “You will tell me what your sister’s greatest wish is.”
“Sook?” Jason asked, already half asleep, with his slumbering mind making him believe he was standing in line at Panera. So it was that side of his brain that had him answering, “Tomato.”
Jason remembered how Sookie always wanted tomato soup to go with her grilled cheese. Deciding that was as good as being half-soup too, Jason nodded to himself more than to Eric’s incredulous sounding, “Tomato?”
With the carpet under his cheek moving to and fro with his actions, Jason sleepily reiterated, “Yeah. Tomato.”
His lover’s greatest wish was a tomato?
Eric was all for tossing her salad, but he didn’t see why she would covet the bulbous fruit.
But then again, Sookie had always managed to surprise him and confuse him even more – he wasn’t the mind reader in their pairing – so if it was a tomato his lover wanted, then it was a tomato she would get.
The following morning…
For the second time that week, Sookie’s feet skittered to a halt the moment she stepped outside.
Shaking her head, like a shit brown banged cat named Bill, she couldn’t believe what she was seeing.
All of the flowers that had once surrounded her house – the same ones that had been lovingly planted and tended to by her Gran – were gone.
Marigolds and azaleas. Rose and hydrangea bushes. They were all gone and had been replaced with every tomato plant west of the Mississippi, if she had to guess.
Jersey tomatoes. Beefsteak tomatoes. Cherry and Roma tomatoes.
Wandering around her flower-turned-tomato-beds, she didn’t know what to make of it all. Why someone would do that or what in the hell she was supposed to do with them all.
Sookie enjoyed a nice ripe tomato every now and again, but the amount she now faced was just plum tomato crazy.
She hadn’t even considered her troubles were thanks to her Brandywine beau until her eyes lit across a sign, staked into the ground smack dab in the middle of them all.
My Lady’s Garden of Eatin’
White hot fury instantly shot through her veins and she screamed up at the sky, shaking her fists at the injustice of it all, while her blood pressure rose to dangerous levels and her face turned the color of – ironically – a ripe tomato.
Bending over at the waist, Sookie began ripping the plants out like a woman possessed, vowing to herself that it would be a cold day in hell before Eric got to dine at her Chez Coochez again, much less managed to get himself an invitation.
Time and again Sookie had proven herself a worthy companion by thinking out of the box in order to help Eric when dealing with his enemies. Now he had somehow become his own worst enemy, with his actions keeping him out of her box.
But Eric had come to the conclusion he could no longer rely on himself or the help of others to come up with a suitable gift for his lover. He’d known her to be easily ignitable, but he never would have suspected she could be capable of such destruction.
Finding the tomato plant bonfire burning on his front lawn upon rising the night after he’d DIY’d her flowerbeds, the fumes had seeped into his resting place all throughout the day and had him smelling like a Papa John’s delivery driver for three nights now.
A part of him worried for Tortoise Eric’s safety, but he knew it was every Eric for themselves now and could only hope his little coldblooded namesake had gone to ground.
Or – at the very least – into his shell.
But Eric couldn’t understand what had angered his lover so. Perhaps his banged pussy present had been a bit insensitive, but he had put a lot of thought into the flowers he’d initially chosen and even more effort into coming up with fully ripened tomato plants in December.
All to give Sookie her own Garden of Eatin’.
She fed him. It was only fair that he returned the favor.
But she clearly hadn’t wanted any of it and thinking back on other things he’d given her, Eric soon realized there had been a theme. In the past he had gifted her with things she’d needed.
A new coat.
Fresh gravel poured over her driveway.
They had been easily picked and easily done. But now that they were something more than just vampire and telepath, he wanted to give her something more…
And then it dawned on him.
Once upon a time, when he’d no memory of who he was, he had offered her something more. He had offered to stay with her always and while at the time she hadn’t agreed because she felt it would’ve been selfish of her, she also hadn’t disagreed.
And Eric was all about technicalities.
So even though Sookie hadn’t appeared to want him with her at all as of late, he had no doubt she would eventually come around.
And then he would eventually get to her to come around him.
But he knew her attachment to her ancestral home meant he would have to be the one to stay with her. And wanting her to be able to stay at his side when the sun rose in the sky, he knew the hidey hole Chow had built into the closet floor wouldn’t do.
So he called in a debt by placing a late night phone call to the Were Herveaux.
The following evening…
Sookie was dead on her feet when she finally made it home, but thinking it only made her think of Eric and how much she missed him.
He was dead on his feet too.
But pulling an unexpected double shift had exhausted her. However, seeing the familiar pickup truck already parked in her driveway, her eyes narrowed and a welcome shot of adrenaline coursed through her veins.
If they’d found another dead Were buried in her woods, she didn’t want to know about it.
Both wearily and warily, she walked into the house – about to give Alcide a what-for for breaking and entering, while silently grumbling over the inability to rescind a Were’s invitation – when she came to an abrupt stop at what she saw sitting in her living room.
“The hell is that?” she huffed, too tired to use all of the words that should’ve been used in that sentence, while wondering if maybe she was dreaming.
Maybe she was still sitting in her car in Merlotte’s parking lot, drooling on herself at that very moment.
One could hope.
But her hopes were dashed when Alcide waved his hand in a ‘Voila’ fashion and said, “I just finished it.”
“No you didn’t,” she argued back. “It’s still sitting there, so until you rip it out of my house, you’re not done.”
But as much as she hated it, a small part of her heart ached, suddenly missing Lafayette.
He would’ve loved it and all of its gaudy splendor.
“But you haven’t seen the best part,” Alcide said and then opened the doors, revealing the armoire adorned with matching cupids on each side was in all actuality a passageway.
A passageway that led down.
Into one of the circles of Hell, she was sure.
“The hell is that?” she repeated.
“Eric said you wanted it,” he replied, sounding affronted. And then sounding disgusted, he added, “So you could stay with him during the day.”
“Come again?” she asked, unable to process the audacity of the Supes in her life.
“That’s what he said,” the Were grumbled.
But it had been what he’d said that made it all finally click into place.
Eric was still sticking with his theme.
The subtext was nearly as bad as his Garden of Eatin’.
But as far as she was concerned, he wouldn’t be getting to snack on anything in the Cupid’s cupboard he’d had Alcide build or the one she’d been born with either.
In fact, he’d be lucky if she didn’t get herself a crossbow and let her love fly smack dab into the middle of his heart.
Alcide was just lucky to have made it out of the house alive because Sookie had taken out her Christmas tree and a side table when she went Lizzie Borden on Eric’s gift.
Sitting on her couch the following night and staring at the remnants of her psychotic break still strewn across her living room floor, Sookie watched Turtle Eric pushing one of the many Christmas ornaments lying around across the floorboards, while wondering how it all had gone so wrong.
She couldn’t for the life of her figure out what in the hell Eric had been thinking by doing all of the things he’d done lately.
But feeling the telltale void approaching her front door, she got up and grabbed the broom, prepared to shoo kitty Bill away again, when instead she found Pam standing there, somehow looking both bored and amused.
So the day still ended in ‘Y’.
“You will come,” she said in lieu of any type of greeting.
“Not you too,” Sookie sighed, with her shoulders slumping with defeat.
Eric – and Pam too, come to think of it – must have been with hundreds, if not thousands, of women in their long lifetimes.
What was so special about her little patch of poontang that they couldn’t stop going on and on about it?
Stepping into the house, it only then occurred to Sookie that she hadn’t rescinded Pam’s invitation. But then she hadn’t needed to.
The jury was still out on whether that fact would remain true, but if she was being honest with herself, she was glad for the company.
She didn’t want to be alone on Christmas Eve.
Eying the destruction lying on the living room floor, Pam made sure to stomp on a particularly displeasing ornament – a Gone with the Wind bauble – because in her opinion, Scarlett O’Hara was a stupid twat.
And Sookie had no business admiring twats, unless it was Pam’s twat.
What Eric didn’t know wouldn’t hurt him.
Because he would do more than hurt Pam if he’d found out she’d expanded Sookie’s horizons.
But Christmas was the time of miracles, so she held out some hope she might get some action from her little telepathic friend.
However, when Sookie only glared at her, she gave up on getting any for the moment and stared at the chocolate stained Elf on a Shelf pajamas Sookie was wearing, adding, “You need to change.”
“Am I being summoned,” Sookie snarled. “Because Eric’s got another thing coming if he thinks he can tell me what to do after everything he’s done!”
Crinkling her brows, Pam rolled her eyes and replied, “Eric has had no other thing coming. He has been faithful to you, in spite of your ungratefulness.”
“Ungratefulness,” Sookie sputtered in outrage.
But before she could unleash her fury – and rescind Pam’s invitation – Eric’s loyal child held up her hand and said, “Yes. You have been particularly nasty to him as of late, when he has only been trying to do what you wish of him.”
“I didn’t wish for him to give me a bouquet that would make my OB/GYN blush!” she raged. “I didn’t wish for him to turn Bill into a cat that’s had him marking his territory all over my front porch and yowling all night long with his ass perched over my long gone flower beds because he’s too uptight to take a shit!”
Well, that explained the unfortunate odor Pam noticed when she arrived.
And the look of constipation Compton wore even as a vampire.
But still on a roll, Sookie didn’t pause and went on to add, “My flower beds that my dead grandmother planted with her own two hands that he ripped out to plant tomatoes!”
“Tomatoes!” she reiterated. “In December! Who in the hell would want tomatoes in December, much less enough to feed all of Louisiana!”
Then stomping over, she picked up two halves of wood and held them together for Pam to see the broken pieces made a single cupid and added, “Then he did this! He destroyed my family’s home to put in some Den of Iniquity thinking I would be grateful?”
Having heard quite enough, Pam marched over and ripped the pieces from Sookie’s hands, throwing them to the floor with enough force that Turtle Eric scurried – for him anyway – underneath the Christmas tree still lying on its side and ducked into his shell, his Christmas bauble abandoned.
“Yes,” Pam answered, with her fangs snapping down and her stare deadly. “Eric thought you would be grateful to be able to spend time with him in a place where he wouldn’t be forced to leave you at daybreak. Eric thought you would want to remain in your family’s home, so he was willing to uproot his own life in order to give you that. He planted a tomato garden in December because it was what your insipid brother said you would want, when he was forced to ask for help. He gave you flowers because he thought that is what women want their men to do to show their love. Eric thought they were elegant because that is how he sees you. But all I see is a spoiled bitch who is too stupid to see that a man who hasn’t known love in a thousand years was trying his best to show how he feels by giving his ungrateful little twat everything she might want because she’s too proud to admit she wants for anything.”
Well, that certainly took the wind out of Sookie’s sails and eventually she heard herself softly admit, “I only want him.”
“Then you are both stupid,” Pam declared, with her gaze softening. “You already have him.”
But running back over everything Pam had said, Sookie realized one thing hadn’t been addressed and asked, “So what loving thing was he trying to show me by having Bill turned into a cat?”
Side-eying her, Pam’s stare hardened as she said, “We were having a moment. Don’t ruin it.”
And before Sookie could undoubtedly ruin it, Pam shoved a garment bag that appeared out of nowhere into Sookie’s hands and added, “Now, go change.”
Pulling up to Fangtasia, Sookie got out of Pam’s minivan and smoothed out the dress she’d thought she would never see again. It was identical to the one she’d worn at the summit, but had been lost somewhere in the rubble after the bombs went off and destroyed the hotel the following day.
Pam had had another one made from memory.
Apparently her vault held all sorts of information.
Sookie felt a little overdressed for going to the bar, but decided she felt pretty and she wanted to look pretty for Eric. Besides, it was Christmas Eve after all, so there was nothing wrong with getting a little gussied up.
But seeing no other cars in the parking lot, she turned to Pam and asked, “Where is everyone?”
Granted, most folks likely had family obligations that kept them at home, but Sookie had never seen the lot completely empty when the bar was open.
Pam’s only response was a smirk before she jutted her chin towards the front door and said, “Inside.”
Sookie couldn’t tell if that was her answer or an order. But then Sookie had only seen references to her girly bits when Eric had apparently been trying to say something else.
So she had to accept that she wasn’t all that great at reading people, when her telepathy was of no use to her.
Either way, she was chilly and didn’t dawdle any longer, walking as fast as she could in her high heels into the bar, but she stopped short at the sight that greeted her.
Instead of the cliché vampire bar she had come to know and sometimes like, the interior had been decorated to look like a winter wonderland.
A small part of her mind registered the huge snowflakes hung from the ceiling. The poinsettias placed on every table, with larger groupings of them surrounding a fully decorated Christmas tree set up on one side of the stage.
She even managed a small smile seeing the life-size stuffed Santa Claus sitting on Eric’s throne.
But what held the majority of her attention was Eric.
Standing in the middle of the dance floor, with his eyes drinking her in, he wore a tuxedo and a small smile, with his arms hanging down and his hands clasped in front of him.
Unable to recall a single reason why she had ever been mad at him, she was suddenly famished.
And she wanted to eat him.
Holding out one hand towards her, Sookie’s feet carried her forward until she was standing in front of him, her hand in his.
“Lover,” he shyly greeted. “You look stunning.”
Her lips parted, with the apology she knew he was owed working its way up her throat, but all that left her was a small gasp when Eric suddenly took her in his arms and began to slowly move them around the dance floor, just as the music started up.
And hearing the familiar voice that began to sing ‘Blue Christmas’ tears immediately sprung up in her eyes, with them turning towards the stage.
“How did you get him to sing for us?” she whispered, knowing Bubba rarely acknowledged his former life, but it was always a treat when he would spontaneously sing.
“I have my ways,” Eric smirked, pulling her closer to his body, with the tension he’d been carrying melting away now that he had his bonded in his arms again.
Taking in the lyrics, Sookie turned her teary eyes upwards and admitted, “I would’ve had a blue Christmas without you.”
“Don’t cry,” he pleaded, with his eyes widening in alarm. “I thought you would like this.”
“I don’t like this, Eric,” she softly smiled. “I love it.”
Then pulling him down for a kiss, she added, “And I love you.”
Overjoyed at finally giving Sookie something she actually enjoyed, Eric lifted her up and slowly spun her around the dance floor, with their feet literally having left the ground and Sookie’s laughter filling the room.
But in the lull in between songs, Sookie heard the unmistakable meows coming from somewhere outside of the room. Knowing Bubba’s dietary preferences, she wasn’t all that surprised, but it brought to mind Eric’s other gifts and how he’d still managed to keep with the theme they all held in common.
Just as quickly though, she shook the thoughts from her mind, remembering everything Pam had said to her.
Pussies hadn’t been the theme. It was Eric’s love for her.
So she decided one of her gifts to Eric would be to not bring up the shit brown banged cat named Bill.
It was Christmas, after all.