*SPOILERS* For those not familiar with the books, this is set after she has been taken by Neave and Lochlan and carved up like a Christmas turkey. Eric has healed her physically but she is still emotionally damaged from what transpired at the hands of her Fae cousins.
Eric’s maker Appius is in town, and he is keeping Eric and away from Sookie. We may get to that later, but for now Alcide has taken Sookie to a pack meeting and drugged her to stand in as shaman. Hey, from a dipshit wolf’s perspective the only difference between a telepath and a shaman is the money he saved by using a friend.
This book was tough for me for a lot of reasons. Number one of which was Sookie’s consistently off the chart level of self-involvement. I thought this would be a good time to show her things from a perspective other than her own and ask the questions that Erics’s pride keeps locked deep inside him.
Jesus For The Jugular
When we don’t know what to call a good thing happens to us we fall back to saying it was a miracle. When we don’t know what to call a bad thing that happens to us we fall back to saying it was a nightmare.
The difference between the two is perspective.
I had thought Alcide was my friend. When I realized he had drugged me in his clumsy efforts to make a telepath into a shaman I saw clearly through my hazy vision that he was not. He had done this to me for his gain, not for mine. He had done this because he knew that never in thousand years would have I had said yes.
I stood there by the fire shaking inside and outside as the stars moved over my head. I could feel the earth moving beneath my feet! It was an odd sensation that at once elated and terrified me. It lent itself to the notion that at any moment I might fly off the skin of this world into the dark night forever. I closed my eyes, raised my arms out straight and welcomed it.
I had never done drugs, I rarely even drank. It was too hard to keep my shields up when my inhibitions went down. I had, however, seen what alcohol and drug induced euphoria looked like in the mind of another.
There was a complete sense of connection and disconnection, of being apart and a part at the same time. Somewhere around the bonfire that pack had going someone started banging on drum and my body fell into its slow sexy rhythm moving with the world as it spun. I was wide open and unable to shield myself.
I expected to hear the thoughts of the pack, and they were there, a dull roar under the beats of the drum that called my hips to follow its steady beat. I found something else though that was louder, or maybe it found me.
Child, you should not be here, the voice said sternly. There was also love it in though, like a father to a daughter who had done something that she should have known better than to do. My body was still dancing, but my mind was flying.
I didn’t mean to.
No matter. You are here. Ask your questions.
If Alcide had told me that he planned to do this then I might have asked him what his purpose was, what questions he had for me to ask. He did not. So, I asked my questions, ones I didn’t even know I had.
Will there be peace for me?
Child, you are so young. There is no peace except in the quiet moments you carve from the chaos as you live out your existence on this plain.
Then my life will always be this? I showed it then, this voice the things that had happened to me. Bill, the Queen, the bonding, my abduction and torture, asking if this was to be all I was to know.
And more, the voice responded and before me flashed Niall, as he had been at the restaurant, but in this place I saw his true face and recoiled from it. I had loved him instantly because of his beauty. Beauty that had been a lie I could not see until now. I saw him and Claude digging through my house looking for something, their true faces shining through as they ransacked my family treasures.
Destroyers! I called out.
Seekers, the voice answered and showed me a small green glowing object that rested in my hand. Cluviel dor, the voice said. A love wish. As soon as the words were spoken my heart called to Eric.
I saw him kneeling before his maker, Appius who had I met just a few nights before. Then I saw so much more than I ever wanted. I felt his pain as his maker forced him to do things that no one should ever be forced to do! You will divorce the human, Appius said as he closed his eyes in pleasure over Eric’s ministrations to his body. You will marry the vampire queen of Oklahoma. I command you!
No! I called out. I will kill you Appius!
Cold laughter boomed out. Ask me again child if this all your life will be! My images came back to me then, Bill, the Queen, my abduction and torture, ending this time on Eric bonding to me in Rhodes.
Will you save your lover?
Will you kill for your love?
Will you die for him as he would for you?
YES! This time the stars above shook with the power of my answer.
Then open your eyes child! See the chances before you and be only weak when there are other options left. Love is a gift!
Love is a gift, I repeated.
Love is a wish!
Love is a wish, I repeated.
Do you see? It asked me.
Then open your eyes.
OPEN YOUR EYES AND SEE!
I fell to my knees tripping over my own feet. The impact made me open my eyes and I saw Alcide watching me, waiting for my proclamations as pack shaman, his eyes greedy, beady and dark. The only friendship between us had been from me. I turned from it closing my eyes again, only to face Niall again in the restaurant.
Would you like me to kill this vampire for you? His eyes the same as Alcide’s behind his beautiful fake human face.
Can I stay with you, cousin? Claude asked smiling as inside he rubbed his long clawed hands in glee. Power, his mind chanted, power!
Hands were grabbing me then, pulling at me, pulling me down, breaking the skin and I screamed reaching for something to hold on to. At first there was nothing and then…there was Eric lifting me up and holding me tight as he always did.
Lover, what is wrong? You must tell me!
Everything has led to this! The voice intoned again. A necessary preparation to make you strong! To make you ready!
Ready for what? I asked holding on to Eric like a lifeline.
“To fight for what you love,” the voice spoke through Eric. “You know now that there is nothing your vampire will not do for you! What will you do for him? Will you bleed for him as he has for you?”
“Yes,” I said kissing the Eric that held me in his arms. “Yes,” I said again as I heard his fangs come down and felt them pierce my neck as he held me gently, reverently in his grasp. I was his life and he was mine.
I felt in my hands then the small green compact, the cluviel dor.
Love is a wish, the voice said again, and then everything turned to black.
When I awoke I was on the ground, retching from the poison that Alcide had given me. As soon as I could move I thought of my beautiful Eric and knew that I had to go him tonight. Now.
“Sookie!” Alcide shook me, “What did you see?”
“Love is a wish,” I told him then I struggled up from the ground and into the night to find my lover.