I knew this was going to happen…Again.
I knew she would find him and he would not be able to resist…Again.
Whatever hurdles I put in their way, they always found each other. And then the cycle of pulling them apart began. I did not question the curse when it was put on my little sister. It made sense to me at that time. To spare her any more pain than necessary, I stepped in to control the side effects and to be her guardian.
But a millennia worth of stepping in and destroying her life every time she found her happiness, felt like a curse on me too. And with each time, it became harder than the past and the marks were tougher to remove. I did it all, as part of my responsibility, wishing every day that something would change and their hearts would not pull at each other. As much as I wanted to, I could not change the complete fabric of her life. What was about the two of them that they had to be together? And why were they being punished for trying to be one?
It took me a long time to come to terms with the fact that Sookie didn’t want the life her station demanded. She was always the wild one; the child to step into a river to actually feel the water gushing past her feet, the only one of us who refused to walk on water and learned to swim like humans, the only one of us who wanted to walk through a glade and not just glide through it. The joy I felt from her when she learnt and mastered the human art of weaving cloth had been something else. Thereafter, she insisted on wearing things she made herself. None of us noticed it before. She found her calling in healing and made it her purpose. But little by little, she created another world for herself, within our world. It wasn’t something done out of boredom. She did all of that and found as much joy in it as she found when she healed someone who needed healing. In fact, the more happiness she found in things we considered trivial, the more her verve grew. And she became stronger with every new trick she learnt.
She became so attuned to the energies around her that instead of just feeling great joy and great sorrow in humans we chose, like us all, she started hearing what they were thinking, what all of them were thinking. She had somehow broken a very important barrier within herself and we didn’t know what that would lead her to. The day when she heard the exact prayers of humans in close proximity, was the day I first started worrying that she had gone too far. Feelings were fine, they were safer and we were made to deal with them. But being a receiving conduit for every piece of mental dialogue coming from humans for miles around was going to be crippling. I tried keeping her hidden from everything but that did not work well. For one, she didn’t want to hide. My Sookie was not the one to run and hide. She wanted to put her ability to good use. So she worked hard on shielding and like everything else she put her mind to, she mastered this tricky art as well.
She started growing into the role she was meant to have. Things would have worked well for us if she hadn’t found him.
The mighty warrior…
Her half Earth fae, half human Erik…
There was something about him that just drew everything to him, enchanted everyone that came in his contact; birds, animals, humans, fairies and other creatures. Even as a babe, no one could resist his charm. And the allure grew to an unearthly level as he grew. The young boy radiated energy and spark. His verve was a flame within the darkness of humanity that we could not miss.
My Sookie? Her magic lay in her clairvoyance that soaked up everything, good or bad. I should have known she would find her haven with his mind.
When she first saw him, I still remember the look of pure ecstasy on her face as she just closed her eyes and felt him, his mind and his soul. Sookie was never the same after that. Her light sang in perfect harmony with his spark, whenever she went near him, even if she kept herself hidden from his eyes.
Before Erik, we had not realized how her extra sensitive heart was wearing out my Sookie. She was becoming brooding and withdrawn. Being near Erik made her happy again. Her aura, that had been receding since she became a pure telepath, started to grow in power again. So even if it went against all our moral codes, I did not stop her from seeking Erik out. We didn’t know she would never stand a chance of coming back to us.
I do not understand how fate could lead two creatures from two different plains of existence, surely and irrevocably to each other. How was it possible that the two of them could be so disparate and yet fit into each other like two halves of a cracked orb? How was it possible that after an absolute curse, restrained powers, Erik’s death and Sookie’s banishment, these two stubborn beings still gravitated towards each other and beat the curse, the death and the loss of power!
I do not own fate. I do not curse it. But I do not understand it either.
Fate made them the way they were and then tore them apart. Fate brought them together again and again and then I was the accursed being that saw everything, knew everything and yet played the part of tearing Erik and Sookie from each other, a part my fate lay out for me millennia ago.
I stood outside Erik’s house, where I had been pulled with the feeling of Sookie’s magic coming back, which in turn meant that she had had Erik’s blood, thinking everything through.
Sookie was always good at finding and reaching out for her powers within herself. She would start remembering her past when her own verve healed and pruned out the effects of the curse on her. It always took her a few decades to heal and then start looking to fill the hole that always ached within her with want of Erik. I always gave her a new start at that point, starting the mock human cycle of being born again. Sometimes she found him and sometimes she couldn’t and died alone. I don’t know how but in this lifetime, my sister had already unlocked some of her dormant energy when she healed that room full of injured humans.
This time she found Erik even without starting the healing. This time she found the door behind which her powers were locked away, on her own, and had taken a peek inside. Why did she not leave him alone for a lifetime and just grow on to become what she was meant to be?
I should have acted before but I got carried away in beginning to sense her growing strength again. I also wanted to make the clean cut and ensure that Erik was locked away in silver for five years for the vampire I took away, before removing Sookie from this life.
It might be near to impossible to pull her back this time. If she had reversed the curse to the point where she could be the healer again, then maybe she was too far gone. If I snuffed out her light again, would she survive it? Would my brotherly pride be the end of her? Had I failed her already?
I needed to know…So I waited for the night to pass and for the day to dawn. I waited for her to be alone before I approached her to make sure she would survive me. Then I would start on my task of ending her life as she knew it and giving her a new one.
Eric looked at his hand and his eyes grew wide with shock! There it was, the glow, the light flowing through Sookie’s bare skin, which had somehow found a way inside him and was now running through his veins too. Their clasped hands dazzled with the light flowing like a river, starting from Sookie’s hand, making its way to Eric’s skin and then back, to be lost between the two. The glowing fiber was connecting them, enveloping them and growing within them, taking a life of its own. This was not a vampire blood bond. This was something entirely and astoundingly else.
Gently and very slowly, Eric sat up and stared at his arms and hands. Sookie rose on her elbows and looked at him with worry. He was not speaking at all.
“Eric?” she asked, unsure of what she could say.
Eric just sat there and looked at Sookie with the same shocked expression. For once in his life, his brain just shut down. He didn’t know what to do or what to say. Sookie’s worry grew and she sat up, taking his hands in hers and looking into his eyes. “Eric? Do you know anything about this? Do you know what is happening to us?”
He just looked lost now. Lost and a little frustrated as he clutched at her hands. “I…I don’t know! But it happened when our blood mingled. We have started a bond Sookie. But this is unprecedented. Vampires don’t glow like this. Ever…But…” He eyed her contemplatively, “It started within you. And then came inside me with your blood.” And he slumped in resignation. “A thousand years’ worth of experience and I still can’t help us. We will have to wait and see what happens next. I don’t want to share much with anyone else right now.”
Eric’s phone began to buzz in his pocket and jerked him out of his funk. One moment he was sitting in the middle of the bed, holding Sookie’s hands for support and the next moment he was pacing the room with the phone held close to his ear, frustration growing with each pass he took. Sookie stared at him as he paced, listening in to a one sided conversation that made no sense to her.
“What do you mean she is demanding his release?”
Another pass and Eric growled…
“He broke the law!”
He stiffened and looked at Sookie.
“Hmmm. Ok…Hold him till I get there.”
Then he suddenly looked at his hands again. The glow was fading a bit.
“I’ll be there as soon as possible.”
“I said as soon as possible. There are some things I need to take care of.”
Without waiting for a reply, he shut of his phone and came to sit with Sookie again. Eric closed his eyes and took a deep breath before taking Sookie’s face in his hands. “I need to tell you something and you need to be strong about it.”
Sookie frowned but nodded.
“Promise me you will let me protect you, come what may.” He pressed on.
This was growing more and more nerve wracking for Sookie. “What is it Eric?”
Eric’s eyes smoldered with intensity as he said, “Promise me…”
Sookie placed her hands on top of his and tried to be as calm as possible before replying, “You already do Eric.” She smiled a little and tried to lighten things up to keep him calm. “Besides I am always getting into trouble. Are you sure you can keep up?” But she could see that Eric was hanging by a thin thread and wanted her to say the words. So she said them “Ok…I promise. Now tell me what is it?”
“Your grandmother was attacked this evening.” Sookie’s hold on his hands grew tighter, “In the struggle, she lost her footing on the porch steps and hit her head.”
Sookie went completely still. Her breath hitched and Eric could hear her heartbeat go erratic. Her face gave away nothing, but her voice was strained and raspy, wanting and not wanting to know the next thing Eric was going to say. “Is she alright?”
Eric could no longer look at her. He closed his eyes and his head dipped. “No, my love! She didn’t make it. I am so sorry I couldn’t save her for you.”
They sat there for a while. Sookie, looking at the golden head and clutching his hands around her face, trying to absorb what he told her, nt knowing what to do and Eric sitting with his head down, not sure what Sookie was going to say or do. After a moment, Sookie let go of his hands and forced him to raise his face to look into his eyes. “Do we know what happened?”
We…That one word warmed Eric more than he thought he deserved. The thought that Sookie considered them a ‘we’ encouraged him to open up to her. “Bill tried taking Adele away. I was having her watched, because I knew this could happen. A struggle ensued between Bill and the…uh her guard. But Adele slipped on the stairs and hit her head hard.” For now, Eric decided to keep the fairy story to himself. Sookie didn’t even know about the existence of werewolves. What would she say to other creatures who were the rarest of the rare to make an appearance and were more vicious than even the vampires she feared so much. He looked at her pleadingly, sifting carefully through the emotions she was feeling. She was feeling pain, anger, guilt, but most of all, devastation.
Humans used tears to handle their pains. But Sookie wasn’t crying at all and this worried Eric. She appeared to be in shock, but she needed to let go at some point or she wouldn’t recover from the pain. He gently took her in his arms, trying to provide the comfort she needed, hoping that she could feel something to bring her back. But Sookie just sat there rocking back and forth, her face locked off, her eyes far away, not a drop of tears in sight. After some time, she turned her head inwards and placed her forehead on his heart, holding on to his shirt as if she was holding on to her life. She took a couple of deep breaths, before kissing him on his chest.
“Take me home Eric.” Her voice was devoid of any emotion. It was absolutely empty, just like her face and eyes.
He kissed the crown of her head. “I’ll get you something to wear and we can go.” He whispered.
Sookie looked down to her tank top lying down in tatters. The moment that she had shared just minutes ago with Eric seemed so far away now that she could have sworn it was dream if her top hadn’t been a pile of ribbons. She nodded and said in the same robotic voice. “Yes please. This won’t do at all.” Breathing shallow, she extracted herself from the comforting embrace and stood up. “Is there a restroom I can use?”
Eric stood up too and showed her to his bathroom. “I’ll go see about a shirt.”
Their eyes met in the huge mirror and Sookie nodded. Her vacant eyes were like a knife to his dead heart. Those eyes were dancing before. Now, there was no flicker of life in them. He could not look into them and he could not come to terms with the guilt he was feeling over failing to protect what was so dear to her.
“You didn’t do it Eric.”
Her words brought him out of his reverie and he looked at her again in the mirror, a little shocked at how calm she was sounding. It amazed him again at how much Sookie could understand his silence as well as his words. No other had been so attune to his mind before. When had she gotten to know his so well?
“You didn’t kill her.” She said again.
“I could have saved her.”
“While you were saving me?”
Eric shook his head vehemently. “I knew this could happen. I should have protected her better.”
Sookie’s face was impassive but this time, her voice shook a little when she answered him. “She was my responsibility too. But here we are, incapable of making it go away now. Pull yourself together Eric. We have a lot to do. I am in no condition to handle your guilt and mine too, in addition to her loss and everything else.”
There was the ‘we’ again…
Whatever he was expecting, Eric did not expect her to say what she said. But there was a tiny comfort in his mind that whatever had happened, Sookie was not pushing him away. They were together in this. And she was right. He needed to pull himself together and be the rock she could lean on, in her grief. He straightened up and took a step towards her, before wrapping her small body in a crushing embrace, her back to his chest, just needing the contact. Their eyes met in the mirror and he dipped his head in respect, before giving her some privacy and going to look for a shirt.