Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Chapter Sixteen - The Reckoning

Bill Compton had thought he understood the meaning of the word terror, but now realized that he had been mistaken. He could sense Eric and Pam behind him as he felt his coat being pulled from his arms. Nothing in his previous experiences, as either human or vampire, could have prepared him for this dreadful feeling that rocked his mind as he gazed into the black, souless eyes of the Magistre. Black eyes that were lacking in compassion for anything human or vampire and who obviously found great enjoyment in witnessing the pain and suffering of those he held power over. As he listened to the excited bloodhowls of the ragtag collection of vampires behind him as they gleefully and enthusiastically demonstrated their approval while the fangs of some unfortunate were being yanked out by the root, Bill realized that this was going to be a very long evening indeed. And he was afraid. There was no point in admitting anything less. He could not even begin to imagine what fate had in store for him on this night.

For a brief moment he turned his blue eyes up at the full moon. It was such a beautiful moon, a lover's moon. But not for him. Bill knew that in all liklihood he would not see Sookie again. If he did, it would not be for a very long time and by then she would be a very old woman. Who would protect her now? Would she join others he had loved and through his mistakes, be forever lost to him for all eternity? He could not even begin to imagine anything so painful as knowing a gravestone would be the only part of her he could touch. Another love stolen from him. As he reflected upon the events of the previous evening, Bill realized that he had only himself to blame. The sheer stupidity of agreeing to accompany Sookie to Fangtasia was only the beginning. He now knew the gravity of this mistake. From the moment they walked through the door of that place, it was as if this evening was as inevitable as the rising of the sun. He should have known better. If only. It seemed as if his entire existence had been full of "if onlys". If only he had kept her away from Eric. If only he had done more to help in her efforts to clear her brother's name. If only he had not wandered off the road and sought respite from his hunger and thirst at that cabin. It was the beautiful, luminous full moon, much like the moon of this night as it came from behind the cover of a thick, dark cloud that had led him to Lorena's door. If only.

In spite of the humiliation of it, Bill found himself clinging to a small spark of hope that Eric would come to his aid in some way and perhaps it would hold some sway with this Magistre. He hated more than words could convey that feeling of helplessness and the needing of Eric's influence. This dependence on Eric bothered him almost as much as the validation of this terrible fear he felt. Bill had never attended a tribunal. He found no pleasure in witnessing or participating in the misfortune of another. As the Magistre began to speak, Bill thought back to last night. He had never, in all his years as a vampire, witnessed the staking of another. He had only heard it spoken of. As he recalled the feeling of the wooden stake in his strong hands as it plunged into the back of Longshadow, he felt his fear renewed afresh. Whatever his punishment was to be, it would not be pleasant. Could no one here see what a wonderful, special human Sookie was? He had to protect her. Why could they not see this?

"Five years in a coffin chained with silver". Bill's mind tried to absorb those words, but all he could hear was a dull, humming sound. If he had possessed a heart that still beat, Bill had no doubt that it would have stopped at those words. He could not even begin to think about anything that could be more horrible, more cruel. Or so he thought. It was at that moment that he heard Eric speak. Perhaps Eric speaking had made some difference. The Magistre seemed to hesitate for a moment. What could possibly be more horrid than five years chained in silver?

No, no. no. Bill's mind was reeling in utter shock, disbelief and abhorance at the words he heard. He could not, would not do this terrible thing. Everything in him rose up in abject horror against the words he heard this cruel monster say. It was as if he was watching from a great distance as a terrified and desperate young girl was thrown from the trunk of a car. His mind began to recoil against what he knew was coming. No, no, no. Anything but this. Oh please God, no, no. no!

Bill felt the softness of her hand as he knelt before her. Her eyes, they were so blue! She was a lovely young girl. It was not fair. But there was nothing at all about life that ever was. Bill had never hated to do something this badly in his entire existence. He had caused the death of humans, that was true. And it bothered him greatly each time it happened. But it was never a deliberate act of violence or cruelty such as this. After all these years of witnessing the cruel deeds done by man, Bill truly wondered if God existed. If He did, then Bill could only hope that somehow he could be forgiven for this unholy deed. As he gazed into her bright blue eyes in an effort to calm her, he heard that cruel voice once again. Bill had no doubt the Magistre meant every word he said and would have enjoyed nothing so much as the torture of this unlucky young girl. Bill could not let that happen.

As she desperately struggled against the inevitable and in spite of his resistance and revulsion, Bill could feel it overpowering him. As badly as he would like it to be different, he could no longer deny who and what he was. As his fangs sank into her tender flesh, a raging bloodlust began to consume him. The smell of virgin blood began to drift in the night air and Bill could hear the howls of lust and anticipation. This is who he was. He wasn't a man. Not any longer. The beauty and savagery of who and what he was took over and it was a relief to finally stop fighting against that part of him that only wanted to be Bill Compton. As he accepted and welcomed the rage that came with the knowledge of defeat, he felt himself consumed with the need to feel this young, virgin blood flowing throughout every part of him. He was no longer a man. He was vampire.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Chapter Fifteen - The Bidding

Bill gently leaned over and kissed her soft cheek as she lay sleeping.  He loved to watch her sleep. She had fallen asleep in his arms and for the remainder of the night his eyes had not left her sleeping face.  But dawn would soon be here.  His body could sense it and his blue eyes could already detect the faintest lightening of the sky on the eastern horizon.  He had to go.  He allowed his face to rest briefly in the scent of her hair.  Then, with one last look back at her sleeping face, he was gone.

A few evenings later Bill sat behind the wheel of his dark blue BMW as he made his way home from Monroe.  He had decided to attend to a few errands this evening while Sookie worked her evening shift at Merlottes.  Not much in Bon Temp, with the exception of Merlottes and a few convenience stores, remained open after dark.  So the necessities of picking up dry cleaning and banking, along with any personal shopping, had to be attended to in Monroe.  He smiled as he looked down at the bouquet of red and white roses he had carefully selected for her at the all-night market. Each one had to be perfect, because they represented the two perfect gifts he had received from Sookie.  Her sexual purity and her virgin blood.  Now, with his errands finally completed, he was anxious to return home.  Sookie would be there in a few hours and he wanted to be home when she walked through the door.  To hear the sound of his door opening and knowing it was her returning to him had become the best part of his life.  It was as if one of his favorite poets,  Lord Byron, had written this , just for her.

" She walks in beauty, like the night  
Of cloudless climes and starry skies,  
And all that's best of dark and bright  
Meets in her aspect and her eyes;  
Thus mellow'd to that tender light         
Which Heaven to gaudy day denies.  
One shade the more, one ray the less,  
Had half impair'd the nameless grace  
Which waves in every raven tress  
Or softly lightens o'er her face,  
Where thoughts serenely sweet express  
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.  
And on that cheek and o'er that brow  
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,  
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,  
But tell of days in goodness spent,—  
A mind at peace with all below,  
A heart whose love is innocent"

 As his powerful, yet gentle hands expertly guided the car through the dark, narrow roads as he grew nearer to Bon Temp, he allowed his thoughts to wander once more to the previous evening.  He felt his face form a smile as he remembered their passionate lovemaking.  Sookie had no knowledge of all the things that a more experienced lover knew.  All those things that a woman, through experience, learned how to do that brought added pleasure to a man.  Bill knew he was the only man who had ever touched her in an intimate way.  He also knew that he had been given that most sacred of gifts that any woman can give a man. Her innocence and purity. Bill had tried to explain to her that it wasn't the technique, or the knowledge of ways to pleasure a man that made her lovemaking so special.  It was something even he couldn't explain fully.   In all those years as Bill had forlornly roamed the earth, being forced by either his maker Lorena or compeled by his vile vampire nature to participate in acts that even now made him inwardly cringe, he had all but abandoned the hope that one day he could find love again.  The wonderful feeling of making love to someone whom you not only loved, but that loved you in return was what made Sookie so special.  And what fun it had been with those children!  As a human,  Bill had always loved to be around them and he had forgotten how much fun children could be.  They were so open, honest and for the most part, trusting.  He had not enjoyed the company of a child, at least not under such completely normal circumstances, since he had lost his human life.  As a general rule, children were not part of a vampire's existence.  Living and existing in the dark of night made contact with children a very rare thing.  And Bill could never have forced himself, under any conditions, to harm a child, regardless of how desperate his need to feed.

Eric.  He should have known.  He should have known from the moment he saw the look of naked lust on Eric's face that the safe, isolated world he and Sookie had created would not endure.  And now, here Eric was, stretched out in Bill's bathtub.  Bill knew that it was no mere circumstance that he found Eric in that bathtub. Eric could smell Sookie all over it and knew that it was a place of profound intimacy for them.  This affront to Bill's dignity was a direct message to let Bill know in no uncertain terms just who was in control.  And there was nothing Bill could do about it.  


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Chapter Fourteen - The Resurection

He could smell the dreary, gray rain long before it's dampness slowly snaked down into the black soil of this dark, earthy hiding place.  Bill had remained here, safely hidden, for two days and a night.  Now darkness was approaching once again and his hunger and need to free himself from this silent, dark grave came upon him with a fierceness.  During the painfully long previous night, Bill had comforted himself with the thought that he lay buried below this rich Louisana soil of Bon Temps near his beloved family that he had never stopped missing.  Their bodies had long ago returned to the dust from whence they came, but it was almost as if he was finally where he belonged.  Then his thoughts returned to the one who had brought life back into his heart.  Thinking of Sookie, remembering that wonderful night when she came to him, yearning for the experience of fully consumated love and willingly giving of her life's blood to him brought to his soul a deep contentment and overwhelming need to see her.  

Bill began to stir, began to bring his senses into full alertness.  He stopped for a moment.  There, he could hear footsteps.  Someone was walking, walking very close.  And sobs, Bill could hear the sobs of someone who's heart was so full of sadness and grief.  Then, as his sense of smell became fully awakened and his nostrils picked up her very distinctive fragrance,  he realized who's grieving sobs he heard.  It was his Sookie.  He could feel such a deep sadness pouring from her soul as if her heart was broken.  She was sad.  So, so sad.   He began to claw his way up from this darkness, reaching up into the damp night air with one arm.  He could sense that she was very close, he could feel and smell the heat of her body radiating to him.  He felt his hand close around her ankle and he heard her scream in fright.  He climbed faster, struggling to bring himself out of this damp tomb.  "Sookie, Sookie, it's me", he heard himself say.  

Bill's desperate hunger and overpowering need to feel Sookie's body joined with his once again made their coupling an animalistic mating.  She was so happy to see him, to know that he was alright, that she awakened not only in Bill, but in herself the desperate sexual need to feel him inside her body. For feeling the pain that such a violent couplings brought also brought the reassurrance that yes, it was Bill and he was alright.  As Bill thrust himself into her body, he frantically lowered his fangs, desperate for the strength and taste of her blood, fiercely needing to slake his intense hunger.  No, not her neck.  Like a newborn babe instinctively seeks out the source of it's comfort and nourishment, Bill quickly found a rich, satisfying source of this life's blood that he not only loved the taste of, but needed to satisfy that part of him which he hated more than anything, this thing that shamed him.  His raging hunger sated, he felt Sookie wrap her legs around him as she urged him on with wild abandon and the need to release that feeling of pleasure that made the outside world cease to exist.

Their lovemaking over, they both lay there in this damp night air, staring at the scattering of dark clouds that were quickly moving, allowing the crescent moon to show it's tiny form.  Sookie could not contain her joy and relief at the sight and feel of him.  She kept touching him, as if she thought she surely must be dreaming as she told him of the fate that had befallen Malcom, Diane, Liam and someone as yet unidentified and how sure she was that he was the fourth victim.  Bill held her to his chest and stroked her beautiful, golden hair as he felt his heart swell to almost bursting with love for this wonderful girl.  He was quite contrite after he had pulled himself from inside her.  Had he hurt her?  He also was worried that his frenzied feeding would leave her arm sore and bruised.  Over and over she reassured him.  But they couldn't stay out here all night.  Sookie was covered in dirt and getting cold.  Not to mention the fact that he was naked and completely covered in damp dirt as well.  Bill gently picked her up in his strong arms and began to walk home.  As the warm water of the shower nozzle began to wash some of the chill and dirt from their bodies, Bill took the shampoo bottle and began to gently wash the soil from Sookie's hair.  He loved doing this.  The feel of her silky hair in his hands as he felt the heat from her scalp radiating down through his cool fingers began to stir in him feelings better left for another time.  Although Sookie kept up reassurances that she wasn't hurt, Bill knew better.   Later, after drying and brushing her hair, they both crawled into Bill's comfortable bed.  Even though he was vampire and had no real need of a bed, he often enjoyed stretching out in comfort as he indulged in the pleasure of a good book or good music while waiting for dawn to come.  Sookie kept reaching up, touching his face, as if she again needed reassurance that he was really here with her.  Yes, he was really here.  And here he would stay by her side until dawn, never taking his eyes from her sleeping face as he watched her gentle breaths as she slept.