“Who is our benefactor?” Nora demanded with rabid curiosity. She had been begging Lorena for details since the sun went down.
“Don’t worry about it. I have connections,” Lorena said, turning her head towards her bottle of Tru-Blood and sneering in disdain. “You don’t need to worry your pretty, little head about it.”
“Dammit Lorena,” Nora huffed, crossing her arms over her chest and glowering. She was sick of her new partner’s superiority complex. “Tell me.”
Lorena chuckled smugly, rubbing her index finger around the rim of her Tru-Blood bottle. She so enjoying knowing things that the older female didn’t. “Let’s just say it’s someone who has a vested interest in our little fairy.”
Nora growled in frustration. “Fuck Lorena, if you don’t tell me I’m walking and you can do this on your own. I’m not going to do anything without knowing all the details. I don’t want to risk Godric or Eric’s lives.”
Lorena quickly jumped to her feet and threw the bottle she had been nursing across the room. It shattered and Tru-Blood oozed down the wall. “Your precious fucking maker and blood-brother aren’t at any risk so shut the fuck up. I’m tired of hearing you whine all fucking night about how much they hate you.” Lorena balled her fists up and brought them to her eyes as she mocked Nora and leaned over her. “Whaaa, whaa. Poor me. My blood-brother doesn’t want to fuck me anymore and everybody hates me. I’m so pathetic and my pussy smells like rotten fish.”
Nora put her face in her hands and sniffed back her tears. “It’s true though.”
“Oh for fucks sake!” Lorena screamed, walking away from the table they had set up in the abandoned warehouse. “I’ve never seen someone cry so fucking much. How the fuck did you ever get your pathetic ass turned by an ancient?”
Nora wiped her face with the back of her hand and stood up, walking towards a dark corner, head down and her hair hanging in her face. “I don’t want to talk about it. Let’s talk about the plan.”
Lorena rolled her eyes and curled her top lip up as she watched the other vampire sulk.
Nora leaned against the wall by the corner and rubbed her arms nervously. “Why are we in New Orleans?” She finally said, breaking the moment of silence.
“Because we need somewhere far from Jackson so your maker and blood-brother can’t get here in time once they realize the girl is missing.”
“Do you really think she won’t tell them where she’s going? They aren’t just going to let her leave.”
“Oh, shut the fuck up will you?” Lorena sat back down at the table and started licking the Tru-Blood off her fingers.
“Plus, she’s a fairy,” Nora shuddered remembering Sookie’s succubus scent that she used to snare Godric and Eric. “They have powers they can use against us.”
“She’s part fairy you idiot. And she just found out. She doesn’t have any powers.”
“Listen to me,” Nora grumbled, holding her hands out dramatically, trying to will Lorena to take her seriously. “I watched her use some sort of light beam on Godric and Angur. She completely reversed that witches spells.”
“Yes, right before you guys nearly drained her. Trust me. She doesn’t have the power to stop us. Once she’s here we can capture her.”
“Why not just kill her?”
Lorena shook her head in defeated irritation and opened her eyes as wide as they would go while she looked to the left. “I told you!” She said enunciating every word through gritted teeth. “GOD! Our benefactor wants her alive. She has certain information.”
Lorena and Nora saw footstep shadows under the crack of the warehouse door that led outside. Someone was out there and they both sensed that it was a creature touched by the darkness of hell and it was about to come inside. They both gasped in trepidation as the handle of the door jiggled before slowly cracking open. A dark figure glided inside, the foggy moonlight behind casting an eerie silhouette.
“William,” Lorena sighed in relief. “You scared us. We thought you were…”
“A demon?” Bill frowned, lowering his eyes to his feet. “The devil?”
“No,” she lied out of pity. “It’s just that…”
“I smell of hell and rotten flesh,” he mumbled, a defeated expression on his face.
“It’ll go away, my child. And we will avenge the crimes against you.”
“Are you sure Sookeh can’t send me back to hell like she did Angur?”
“Oh, my dearest,” Lorena said walking up to him and flinching at the stifling stench of him. “She was only able to do that to Angur because he occupied another’s body. You are in your own body. It’ll just take awhile for you to heal, and the rotten smell will fade with time. Did you find a meal? That’ll help hurry the process along.”
“Yes, I ate,” he said in a dejected voice.
She rubbed her hand up his arm. “Don’t you worry, my child. That bitch will pay for this.”
“How?” Bill asked, lifting his head and looking hopefully into his makers eyes. “You said our benefactor wants her alive.”
Lorena sighed. Nora sniffled in a corner. Bill stood before his maker with slumped shoulders.
“Because,” Lorena said with evil glee, her red-stained lips curving into a devious smile. “The hell she will experience in our benefactors care is a far more fitting punishment.”
The truth was, there was more to the story than Lorena was revealing to Bill and Nora. To have such a powerful ally as their benefactor owing her a favor was a nice bonus.
“Who’s the benefactor?” Bill asked.
Nora lifted her tear stained face from the shadows of the corner. “That’s what I’d like to know.”
“Fine. I’ll tell you what happened if you guys shut the fuck up.” Lorena slowly walked back over to the table, swaying her hips with exaggeration. She sat down and rested her chin on her hand as she reminisced…
24 Hours earlier
“Let me in you idiot!” Lorena screamed, standing outside on the lawn to the over-extravagant nest. “I swear to god if you turn me away it’ll be your head on the block!”
She hissed, baring her fangs as her eyebrows creased down in a harsh arc. She would be damned if she came all that way for nothing. She wasn’t leaving without being granted entry. She was one of the original American vampires for fucks sake!
“Queen Sophie-Anne is currently occupied,” a guard grunted, blocking the way with his bulk. “She is not accepting visitors. Come back tomorrow night.”
“This is bullshit! Tell her I have information about one of her procurers, William Compton, and the fairy.
The guard turned slightly away, pressing his finger to his ear and speaking quietly. He nodded then turned back to Lorena.
“The Queen will see you,” he said stepping aside and allowing her entry.
Lorena stood up straighter and sauntered forward. “That’s what I thought.”
She walked into the massive foyer of the nest and looked around. She had never been in the monarch nest in New Orleans but it was obvious the child queen spared no expense.
White. Everything was white and cream colored and a golden chandelier hung over the entry way where she stood. There were no windows, which was a given in a place like this. They had been bricked in and covered on the inside with Gothic window panes, extravagant scenes from the book of Lilith painted on the glass.
She inspected one of the windows which were high above the doors. It depicted a particular story from the vampire bible that Lorena was somewhat familiar with. It was the creation story.
According to the scripture, Lilith had created a thriving society of vampires in a completely different realm but the world where they lived had become overrun with vermin and other races and vampires were considered the lowest of civilization. A creature of pure evil, one of total opposite evolution to the vampire, descended from the sky, bragging that she came from a world not plagued by the lowly vampires. A powerful family of vampires rose up in support of the evil creature, committing blasphemy by forsaking Lilith.
She hatched a plan to capture the evil creature and gain access to her world, where she could go and start anew, not making the same mistakes as before.
Lilith harnessed the magic to cross the abyss into their adopted new home, killing the evil creature and the vampire traitors who stood by her side. She descended into this world which was untouched by magic at the time, and claimed it as her new domain. She had only 3 other vampires at her side and together they built a new and powerful society that rivaled the last. All vampires are now descended from Lilith and the brave three who first stepped foot here.
Below the scene in the fancy script of the old tongue was written: Countless times the ashes of the old Lilith has birthed a new generation. For I walk in her shoes as I lead our kind in her name upon the horizon of virgin shores. For it has all happened before, and it will all happen again. – Lilith.
Lorena had no idea what that meant and frankly she thought it was all a bunch of horse shit.
“Lorena, I never took you for a follower of the scripture,” a voice mocked from behind her.
She turned around and narrowed her eyes at the handsome figure that walked into the foyer. “Andre.”
“It has been… awhile,” he said with a practiced smile, his chestnut hair framing his face and sweeping across his shoulders. His hands were folded neatly behind his back as he slowly walked up to her with confidence. He stopped beside her and looked up at the painted window frame that hung high on the wall.
She turned around to follow his line of sight. “I suppose I believe as much as the next person. Although I don’t have the fortitude of the Sanguinista.”
Andre laughed. “The Sanguinista have it all wrong really. Their fanatical ways would never work in the grand scheme. Humans should be utilized not enslaved. The Sanguinista is not the only interpretation of the book of Lilith.”
“I know that,” Lorena snapped. Did he think she was an idiot? She was over 200 years old for fucks sake.
“What do you think it means?” he asked.
“The phrase at the bottom of the painting, taken from the book of Lilith 9:13. What is your interpretation?”
She thought a minute. She needed to impress Andre. This was an opportunity to make a powerful connection. She tilted her head and tried to look sophisticated. “I suppose it means we are all related in a way, being birthed from Lilith.” She paused and bit her bottom lip. “And I think it means that there was once a society like ours in the world Lilith came from and we have built one again here.”
“Interesting analysis,” he said with a small smile and a twinkle in his eye as he continued to gaze at the painted glass.
She looked over at him, trying to stifle her glare. “Do you have a different analysis?”
“I have studied the book all my life. For over five hundred years I have sought the answers to the greatest debate of our kind. It is my belief that the Lilith that led the three to this world was not the original Lilith.”
Lorena’s eyes widened. “But the book says…”
“I know what it says. But read the verse. For I walk in her shoes as I lead our kind in her name upon the horizon of virgin shores.”
“So who do you think she was?” Lorena asked, pretending to be fascinated.
“Who knows? Does it matter really? I think she was just some vampire who happened upon this world and took on Lilith’s persona. Lilith is nothing more than a metaphoric personality.”
“Do you seriously believe that horse shi… I mean do you really think that is what happened?”
He turned his head to look at her. “I think there is more to our universe than meets the eye. I think we are destined to repeat history. Destined to repeat this never ending cycle of discovery and rebirth. Just as this metaphoric Lilith led our kind to this world, another metaphoric Lilith will lead our kind to a new frontier. A place where vampires do not dwell.”
Lorena snorted which made Andre frown. He turned his back to her and began walking away as he spoke. “I believe you are here to see Sophie-Anne, are you not?”
Following him and clearing her throat she said, “Yes, thank you.—”
Lorena abruptly stopped telling her story about her visit to Sophie-Anne’s nest and glowered at Nora who was moaning in the corner and gasping repeatedly.
“Wait,” Nora huffed. “That’s not what that verse means.”
“For fucks sake,” Lorena screamed with exasperation. “Didn’t your maker ever tell you it is rude to interrupt someone when they’re telling a story?”
“Sorry, but this is important,” Nora walked over to Lorena and stood in front of the table she was sitting at. “The Sanguinista say that scripture was written by Lilith herself, not some vampire who took on her persona.”
“Who the fuck cares? This story is about who our benefactor is not some religious debate over the stupid-ass book of Lilith.”
“I get it; the benefactor is Sophie-Anne.” Nora said rolling her eyes and putting her hands on her hips. “Lilith just talks about herself in that manner because she is divine. She is god.”
Lorena slammed her fist down on the table. “You don’t know shit about who our benefactor is. Shut the fuck up and listen to the rest of the story.”
Nora crossed her arms over her chest. “Fine.”
“As I was saying before I was so rudely interrupted…”
Lorena straightened her hair as she prepared to continue her story.
“Lorena dear! It’s so nice to see you. We are so honored that one of the first American vampires has come to visit us.” The Queen lounged on the floor at her yahtzee table with two humans. Andre silently stood to the side of the room, watching and listening.
Lorena strutted into the room, her dark, beady eyes shinning with prideful triumph.
“Did I ever tell you that I think you are smart and beautiful, and I have always aspired to be just like you? In fact, when I became Queen there was a lot of debate in the authority that you would make a better Queen than I. But alas, everyone knew how dedicated you were at the time to raising your young progeny so they had to settle with me.—”
Lorena’s fangs snapped out and she hissed when Nora started tapping the table with her fingernail.
“That doesn’t sound like Sophie-Anne,” Nora said narrowing her eyes.
“If you interrupt me one more time I will kill you!”
She turned her back to Nora and started speaking again.
“I have information,” Lorena said, standing tall and proudly in Sophie-Anne’s day room.
“YAHTZEE!” The Queen screamed in glee. “Oh, Hadley dear, you really should learn to play better. I beat you every time.”
Lorena sighed in irritation and waited impatiently as she stood in the doorway.
“Again,” the Queen clapped and squealed.
“I have information about the fairy…” Lorena stood there awkwardly while the Queen passed out fresh score cards to her humans. “About the fairy, Sookie Stackhouse.”
Sophie-Anne froze and looked at the human Hadley who’s eyes widened. She quickly turned her head to Lorena and spoke. “William said she most assuredly not a fairy.”
“William is dead. According to Russell Edgington, he’s the King of Mississippi…”
“Yes,” the Queen interrupted, slightly insulted. “I know who Russell is.”
“According to him, Stackhouse staked my child in his sleep during daylight hours!”
Sophie-Anne stood up and started shaking her head. “That can’t be. I spoke to William several weeks ago and he assured me that Hadley’s cousin was not a fairy.”
“My child wouldn’t make that sort of mistake. He was your underling and she killed him. I have come seeking recompense.”
The Queen waived her hand dismissively. “I am sorry that your child was killed, but my concern is getting my hands on that fairy. Do you have any idea what fairy blood tastes like? Do you know if she is truly a telepath?”
Lorena growled. “She is untouchable. She’s under the protection of Godric of Dallas and one of your Sheriffs, Northman!”
“Eric Northman? I do not believe it could be so. He is a loyal subject!”
“Well believe it! They’re in Jackson now and they’ve taken over the state. I’ve been doing quite a bit of digging. I paid a little visit to Sunny Acres. Turns out Talbot has gone insane. All he does is ramble about the alien fairy and her portal stone and how the family of Godric destroyed his curtains.”
Andre spoke, raising a brow. “Portal stone?”
“Are you telling me that Eric Northman has my fairy?” The Queen was balling her fists and her face was shaking in rage.
Lorena clenched her teeth and willed her fangs not to snap out. Sophie-Anne was childish! Lorena would be a much better queen for fucks sake!
“Thank you for the information, Lorena,” Andre said holding his hand out to escort her from the room. “The Queen is grateful to you for the information and we will see that Compton is avenged.”
“He was my child!”
“Yes, yes. It is a tragedy,” he said trying to urge her from the room as the Queen started tossing furniture into the swimming pool of her day room.
As they walked down the hall he grabbed Lorena by the arm and pushed her into a vacant room.
“What the fuck!” she screamed wrenching her arm free as he pushed her in and turned to shut the door behind them.
“I want more information,” he said, glaring at her.
Lorena crossed her arms and raised her chin. “What’s in it for me?”
“Where was Compton killed?”
“At his home in Bon Temps. She staked him in his sleeping chamber under the floor in the broad daylight. Who the fuck would do something so low?”
“Are there traces of his blood still present?” He asked.
“Small amounts,” she narrowed her eyes. “Why?”
“To answer your question,” he said carefully. “Revenge and the opportunity to resurrect your child.—”
Lorena leaned back in her chair at the table and looked around at Nora and Bill, an expression of smug delight on her face for having been the one to procure them such an infamous benefactor.
“I’m confused,” Nora said. “If you left after Sophie-Anne had a melt down then who is our benefactor?”
Lorena rolled her eyes and slammed her head down on the table in frustration. “My god, I’m surrounded by idiots.”
Gran sat on the couch at the River house watching Pamela as she paced back and forth. The vampire was agitated, causing the tension to hang heavily in the air.
“What is wrong, dear?”
Pam stopped and turned to look at the elderly lady. Why had she volunteered for this fucked up assignment? “My Grand-sire instructed me to call him before we left. Cell service is down.”
“Well,” Gran said standing up and lifting her bag over her shoulder, the bag which held the precious last remaining portal stone. The one which was inscribed with the letter ‘B.’ “I think we ought to go ahead and head out. We can try to give them a call on the way. It’s a four hour drive. Maybe service will be repaired by then.”
“You do not understand,” Pam said in exasperation, an expression of upset riveting her face. “No one just ignores Godric’s commands. If he orders you to do something then you do it.”
Gran smiled softly. “I think your grandfather will understand, dear.”
“Grand-sire,” Pam corrected with irritation as she continued her pacing. “He’s my Grand-sire not my grandfather. There’s a difference.”
Gran looked absentmindedly at the wall. “Yes, I suppose there is a difference isn’t there.”
“Yes, a big difference. You do not want to disappoint someone like Godric.”
Gran sighed. “Dear, I think he will understand. Didn’t he tell you to call if cell service was working? You said last night that when the two of you spoke service was cutting out and he told you to call if you could.”
Pam realized she was biting her finger nails and she growled in frustration. “Fine, let’s go then.”
“Before we go I’d like to know how Sookie is doing. She promised she would call last night after the confrontation with that Russell fellow but she never called.”
Pam froze mid-step without looking at Adele. Fuck! Eric told her that old humans died of heart attacks if they got shocking news. If she told Adele was she going to keel over on the floor? If she accidentally killed Sookie’s Grandmother then her maker would be pissed at her.
“Um she’s fine,” Pam lied. “Why wouldn’t she be? The doctor even said so.”
Gran furrowed her eye brows and put her hand up to her mouth. “Doctor? Why was there a doctor?” She dropped her bag on the ground and her face became stern. “You listen here missy. You better tell me right now what is going on or I’m not going anywhere!”
Pam turned her head to peer at Adele, a look of a dear caught in headlights dancing across her features. Before she could answer, the lights to the river house dramatically shut off.
Gran gasped as Pam looked around. Her training kicked in and she became more alert in the dead silence of the dark house.
“Get to the basement,” she whispered. “We can lock ourselves in.”
“That won’t be necessary,” a male voice chuckled from the door, as it creaked open on the hinges.
“Let’s try to call Pamela and Gran again. Maybe cell service is working by now.”
A loud noise rumbled through the mansion and the walls shook.
“What is that?” Sookie said, gasping and standing to her feet.
“The barriers over the windows are rising,” Eric said looking around with a small growl.
Godric stepped up beside Sookie, snaking his arm around her waist protectively and looking at the glass covered balcony door as the metal plating slid up. “It is nightfall.”
They had been sitting and talking in a second story sitting room they had discovered when Sookie had insisted on exploring the huge mansion.
“They must be on an electrical timer system,” Godric growled with displeasure. The vampires had gained back some of their senses over the last few hours, though they were still over-protective and feisty as hell. Both of them seemed to easily become distracted. Sookie was exhausted from their voracious sexual appetites and hoped that the rising barriers would give them something else to focus on for a while.
Eric zipped to her at vampire speed and lifted her into his arms protectively. She gasped in surprise at suddenly being hoisted in the air.
“Hey! Completely unnecessary!” She squealed looking up at his fang-filled face. He started growling as his eyes darted around nervously. “What the…?”
“Males!” Godric hissed, looking at his child.
“Many,” Eric said nodding in agitation.
“What are you talking about?”
“My love, male vampires are rushing towards the property as we speak,” Godric explained as he sped towards the balcony door and peered outside.
“What? Why? How do you know?”
“We can smell them,” Eric answered. “We will protect you. You are ours!”
Godric opened the balcony door and a warm breeze wafted in the room. Roars could be heard in the far distance and Sookie shivered, a cold chill crawling up her spine.
“They have scented you!” Godric said, grinding his jaw and stepping one foot to the outside balcony. He turned back and looked at her with a small, proud smile playing at the corner of his mouth. “But do not fear, my love. Your mates are strong and fearless. We will destroy them all.”
“We should have saturated her with more of our scent!” Eric hissed, looking at his maker.
“What?” Sookie said in exasperation. “Isn’t that what you have been doing for the last five hours?”
Eric looked down at her as he cradled her protectively in his arms, a smile of his own gracing his lips, the thrill of a fight and the thought of Sookie heating his blood.
He waggled his eyebrows suggestively at her. “That we have. But perhaps I should take you one last time right here before I join my maker in the hunt!”
Sookie’s eyes widened and she nervously laughed as he looked down at her with crazed hungry eyes, piercing blue and molten hot. Was he serious? Yes, she decided he looked quite serious.
She flinched when she heard several loud roaring growls which sounded to be as if they were at the edge of the property now.
“There is no time, my child. The first of the males are here.”
“First?” Sookie breathed with disbelief. “How many are there?”
“At least a dozen, perhaps more,” Godric growled in excitement as he beckoned Eric to follow him to the balcony.