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is an avid fan of the Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mysteries by Charlaine Harris, so much so, that waiting for the next book was not an option! This Sookie Stackhouse Fanfiction fantasy picks up where CH's book 9 left off. Tune in weekly for the next installment of Back from the Dead. Disclaimer: J. Barrington does not own the characters of the Southern Vampire Series AKA Sookie Stackhouse Novels. All rights are reserved for Charlaine Harris.

Yin, Meet Yang - XXI & XXII

“No means No!”

“Let me just look at it?”


“Can I touch it?”

“Hell, no!”

“Puleeeease, baby, baby, please . . . Come on . . . I need it.”


“I’ll show you mine if you show me yours.”

“NO! Look, you were a fun ride, but this is where I get off. Trust, you don’t want none of this.”

“Don’t flatter yourself Mr. Copperfield or should I say Cop-a-feel.” In his fantasy, Seejay was all over me, now he fronts.

“You got jokes. Funny.” He let out a phony laugh. “On the real, as exciting as our chance encounter was, we have to see it for the mistake that it is. You can’t go traipsing through my head all willy nilly whenever you feel like it.”

“What? You tryin’ to save yerself for marriage or somethin’?”Affronted and indignant, I was.

“Or for someone who has better discernment than you, o' imbrued one.” He looked down his nose at me. “It seems that you have taken that Southern hospitality thing to the extreme.” Oh no he didn't! He never looked more like his father than at that very moment. I had to suppress the urge to smack the fool right out of him.

This was not about his stud gifts and he knew it. Barry the bellboy was one of the few other clairvoyants that I knew. Holding hands with that telepath and focusing our energy, intensified our gifts. Simply, touching Seejay sky rocketed us into a new dimension. I glimpsed the true prize the other night and I need more. A wealth of knowledge sprung up and reared its beautiful head. We were kindred spirits, he and I, but he was more knowledgeable and so much, much more powerful. He holds the answers that I've searched my whole life for.

Amelia sat nearby, looking on full of anticipation as the discussion volleyed back and forth, like a tennis match . . . to the death. I actually felt too nauseous to stand but not too weak to argue the case that could ultimately change the course of my life. Seejay’s back was leaning against the wall near the fireplace. Bulging arms folded over a broad chest, his face, an impenetrable block of impassivity, his entire being pulsating with energy, his thoughts on total lock down. Criminy!

“Don’t be judging me, Mr. Copley Jean-Claude Carmichael, Junior!” He raised a brow, surprised that I pulled the whole name card. In the south, if someone called you by your whole name, it was a guaranteed attention getter. It usually meant trouble, which is what I was primed and ready for. I needed to get inside of his head . . . by any means necessary.

Not above gaining sympathy via the damsel in distress roll, I turned on the water works. “I, I, I, need just a little taste, Seejay. Just once more. I’ll go slowly this time. I promise. I will be very, very, careful. I promise.” With determination and without permission, I coyly crept forward into the abyss. I soon closed my eyes to appreciate the nuances of his multi-layered psyche. His brain sizzled with a live current and I was getting excited as I felt him yield to me infinitesimally. Seems like the Sookster has a few skills, too. My face remained placid but a smile beamed throughout my entire body. This is it, I thought. I'm going in.

“Don’t . . .” he whispered a urgent warning but like a moth to a flame, I was so compelled to reach my goal.

“Stay away from the light, Carrie Ann.” My instincts told me as the familiar billows engulfed me with a welcoming, warm and comforting caress and mmmmmy blood tingled, my body trembled and my back involuntarily arched and Yes. Yes. Ye-es! Euphoria . . . and then . . . BZZZP, BZZZP. Like a bug I was fried, died and rolled to the side. I would like to say that it was like an insect flying into one of those zappers is what happened. If there was a single word for what hell, fire and damnation felt like, that would be more like it.

One of my eyes stared up at him, a frozen, dialated pupil while the other seized, fluttering to open. My heart pounded. No, he didn’t use that sorcery crap on me! That was just  plain terrifying and amazing, I thought, taking his measure when I was able to focus again. I found him . . . not lacking a dang thing. My greedy eyes drank him in like I'd seen him for the first time. A cool, blue, pulsating aura surrounded him, something that I'd failed to see before but I somehow knew was always there. His impeccable form fully occupied the space between the furniture and the fireplace. One elbow propped his head with an angelic face that held an expression of sheer boredom. That expression was a lie but he was sticking to it. He was just as curious as I was, a riddle to b solved.

A dark hat was fitted to that crammed to bursting noggin. The fit of it, the line across his brow, favored his chiseled stony facial features set on a creamy mocha pallet. He had on a button down and dark jeans. An open button at the top of his shirt revealed faint tattoos licking up his neck like flames that barely extended beyond the collar. Hmmm? I hadn't noticed those before, and though they didn't look it, I briefly wondered if they were new.  A leather belt with a large pewter buckle rested on his hips, just so, like at any moment gravity would pull it down and take the pants with it and gift me with a very interesting show. Focus, Sookie. It had music notes on it and the words ROCK HARD engraved in big letters. Shepherd of Ju . . . Oh my! I shook my head to loose myself of those devil images. His cowboy boots were probably faux, considering his “organic” status, but looked like real ‘gaters, just the same. Long, sinewy legs slightly bowed into his boots perfectly. Made for ridin', I thought absently, horses that is.

“That was ‘Frustrated Seejay’ and he’s one of the nice ones.”  Though his lips never moved, a melodic vice floated into my hearing. My ears warmed as if he were simultaeously whispering into both of them. Realizing that he had that ability and the soothing tone nearly made me smile. His glacial gaze brought me back to the seriousness of the situation. “You already met ‘desire’ the other night. Shall I introduce you to the rest of the cast?”  I didn’t bother to respond. I passed on the offer suspecting that meeting “happy” on the next go round would be a crap shoot.

“Junior!” I heard Amelia fussing over me as my body twitched on the sofa. “Don’t be such a brute!”

“It shall not kill her,” was his dry reply. “Barely conscious, she is still trying to needle her way into my head.” He sank to his haunches to look me over. He leaned close, checking my pupils like a doctor. Obsession for Men, I thought, as his masculine scent mixed with fresh lavender and cinnamin? invaded my nostrils. “The contents of my head is not suitable for human consumption,” he said through teeth so perfectly shaped and white they reminded me of little Chiclets all neat in a row.

“Please? You have so many answers in your head about my gift. I've glimpsed them. Somebody enlightened you,” I pleaded. “Now, enlighten me.” Amelia shot him a disappointed stare and his hardness melted and smidgen. He offered a sympathetic glance.

“I’ll see what I can do to help my sister’s friend,” he finally relented looking over at Amelia and I knew it was for her benefit and not mine but I didn't care. I closed my eyes and sighed deeply in relief. Quick as a wink, he was gone taking with him my compulsion. How'd he do that?

I thanked Amelia for her silent but effective stance. I could tell that it wasn’t easy for her to side with me. “I’ll always have your back Roomie.” She snuggled up to me on the couch. After my twitching subsided I asked if I could talk to her about what happened.

“Junior’s secrets are for him to reveal,” she responded a little defensively.

I thought about that for a moment. She had clearly kept my disability from Seejay, so I guess I would have to wait for him to open up.

“I can, however, tell you whatever you want to know about me. If that so happens to cross paths with my brother’s, oh well.” I wanted to cry. My roommate was very reserved and volunteered very little information about her own life but she knew that this could be a turning point for me and I loved her for it.

As the room darkened with the impending night, Amelia made a fire and filled the silence with the colorful tale of which legends are made. “I have worked my entire life to perfect what my brother effortlessly wields in his little finger.” Her face brightly illuminated and dimmed with the flames from the fire. “I practice magic . . . he is.”

Her brother, from another mother, is from a long line of magical beings known as Shaman. “The magic never dies,” she told me. Ancestors are reincarnated and powers bestowed on the next generation.“From the cradle, I was never the child of promise that my parents had hoped for  but. Junior was. He could influence all around him and his mother, Marie, nurtured his gifts. As a child, she marveled at his knowledge and abilities.” Marie was a magical creature herself yet she had seen nothing like him, Amelia’s thoughts told me. Amelia’s mind said many things to me about the matter; things that were confusing, things that were unsettling and things that were just downright unbelievable. Coming from a telepath, who had seen just about everything, that was saying something.

Marie was a corporate attorney and worked for Copley, Sr. He knew about the special gifts that Marie possessed, outside of her brilliant legal prowess. He solicited the help of the Laveau descendant to woo the object of his affections, Ms. Amai Broadway. One love potion and a few hocus pocuses later, he got the girl and so much more. Marie was intrigued by Copley’s undying love and commitment to do whatever it took to have the woman of his dreams. Her covetous thoughts compelled her to produce a love potion for her own purposes. Copley drank from the life altering cauldron, fooled to think that this was part of the ritual. Amai fell for Copely but Copley had fallen for Marie. When the smoke had cleared and the power of the potions dissipated, Amelia Broadway and Copley Carmichael, Jr., rose from the ash of deception. Copley hated feeling duped. He couldn’t get around his son’s gift but he forbade the use of magic from then on. Thanks to the boy child’s gift to assuage, they all lived harmoniously at the Carmichael estate.

Marie played along with the magic ban on the surface. In secret, however, she sang incantations over his crib and spent every waking hour teaching the promising young talent, with his sister looking on, hoping and praying that a smidgeon of the sweet melodies would reign over her, as well. I saw memories play out in Amelia’s head like a motion picture. She marveled at her brother’s ability to move things with his mind. Telekinesis? I assumed. I wondered if that was why I felt that weightlessness with him.

“Mom tried to make me less impressionable,” Amelia said as if she was looking back over her life. “Truth was, Junior could do no wrong in my eyes. I worshiped the very ground he walked on and he loved me, unconditionally. We share the same father and even the same birthday. By the time we were old enough to know our own minds, we were inseparable.”

Marie considered a full grown, fully trained, all powerful Sorcerer, a success until her rebellious son opted out of the family business and renounced his shaman birthright. “Junior wanted to impress daddy,” Amelia said with a hint of jealousy. Pappa Carmichael loved both of his children dearly and doted on them. He maintained his “Superman” status throughout their lives and vowed that any offspring of his would be refined and highly educated in the best schools. Most importantly, they would never dabble in magic. His son, who excelled in everything, accepted his father’s challenge when he became an adult. His rebellious daughter, who was ever the under achiever, (compared to her brother) did not. “I embraced magic,” she said, in awe of the words.

“Today” she spoke loudly as she stood. “We have the very un-dynamic duo of me, the little witch that could and Junior, the powerful sorcerer that won’t.” I guess that was a good note to end on. She wanted to check on her brother who seemed pretty conflicted when he left. I appreciated her trying to give me some insight on the very sensitive subject. It gave me a lot to think about.

I couldn’t help but think that properly managing my gift could, somehow, get Eric and I from under the new regime. It could get us on equal footing, at least.

“I wouldn’t do that if I were you.” Her words startled me. I was so deep in wishing that I hadn’t realized that I spoke aloud. I looked over to her as she stood at the door.

“My brother is a -” she paused as if she was searching for proper terminology “a quiet storm. Please don’t mistake his kindness for weakness, Sookie. He is very likely to help you just because he's good like that.” The instant relief I felt made me smile on the inside. “That same gentle giant” she continued “is just as likely to harpoon a vampire and drag him into the sun, kicking and a screaming.”



My back porch was slowly filling with packages addressed to Sonny D. Walker, Eric’s daytime alias. It seems that Eric was quite the Groomzilla and was on top of wedding plans for which we hadn’t even chosen a date. I could care less about the details and gave him free reign. He showed me so many swatches of fabric that they all began to run together. We both finally settled on the color scheme of crimson and crème. It sounded good together and Eric said that it made him think of me. I could almost see the vision as he reminisced about biting into my creamy flesh and the crimson flow of blood. He smiled and licked his lips like he could just taste it.

We combed through hundreds of invitation samples. I had no idea how many decisions there were to make. So many paper types, envelopes, response cards, fonts, the wording, it was enough to make my head spin. “Maybe we can save this for later,” Eric had pity on me when he saw my eyes start to glaze over. I was just a little tired.

My honey was looking a little green around the gills himself. He’d been burning the candle at both ends since he took leave from work. Typical Eric was not going down easy but after a hot bath and much coercion I got him to actually get in the light tight hidey hole, hoping that it would rejuvenate him. A relaxing massage and Eric was putty in my hands. He especially liked it when I got to the feet and I could feel the tension of the pressures from work, the wedding and having a new fiancé run right out of him. I made a pallet on the floor and slept next to the hidey hole.

It felt exactly like I was sleeping on a hard wood floor but I was next to my honey and nothing else mattered. I had sweet dreams of a fairytale wedding, extravagant enough to rival the Bellefleurs and the look of envy on Portia’s face, priceless.

I woke to find Eric beside me with a plentiful spread of fruit and stuff he didn’t (thank God) have to cook. His unclothed body served as the serving platter. “Enjoy your meal lover.” He looked on me with hooded eyes. He rested on his elbows and licked his lips beckoning for a kiss. I gave him a taste of what he was seeking, real gentle and sweet like. Then, I devoured each bite, hands free. I could almost hear his fangs lowering as he watched me close, gasping whenever my lips grazed him. For some reason the mid-region cluster of strawberries refused to stay put. They rolled all over the floor before I got to them. I showed him my best disappointed pout. “I guess you will have to settle for that large, firm banana,” he said in a low, strained voice. He stretched his long and lean body out on the wood with hard arms cradling his head. I gulped taking in the sight of all that. Surprisingly, or maybe not so surprising, I found that I like bananas, a lot.

It was a long and very, very hard journey but I eventually finished the meal that seemed too much for my little ole mouth to take in. It took even longer to get the splinters out of my backside. That part wasn’t so bad either. Each scrape of the tweezers, each yank of wood from my flesh reminded me of the way it came to be.

“Endorsements and sponsorship,” Eric said as I toweled my hair after the shower. This practice of giving me “the business” and then discussing business was a good strategy. I truly appreciated his efforts in keeping me in an agreeable mood. After the strawberries and bananas episode, I was ready to sign over the farm.

“I’ll bite,” I said to the vampire. “What endorsements, what sponsorship, oh great lover of mine?

“I told you that this would be a lucrative venture for all involved, if we play our cards right. I have companies begging to sponsor our wedding and petitioning the ‘First Couple of the NVL’ as Felipe has dubbed us, to endorse their products.” He splayed out brochures of countless products. There were samples of blood, blood and more blood. Most of them, I was familiar with. One, Fairy Tail brand, I had never heard of. “You Haven’t Lived Until You’ve Had A Piece of Fairy Tail” was the slogan. It promised to have a percentage of actual farmed Fae blood in each bottle and was quite pricey. Vampires go koo koo for fairy blood.

Coffins, I had no clue that there were so many coffin companies. I thought about tossing Bill’s vampire database business into the mix. Maybe work would help him recover and I mentioned it. “Remember these guys?” He said, holding up a brochure for Anubis Air. It was one I was very familiar with. It was an airline exclusive to vampires that guaranteed safe transport during the undead’s vulnerable hours. It now had lots of competition. By the time we reached the pie in the sky sun block and stay awake serum, I was done.

“Reel it in Eric! You can endorse whatever you want but I ain’t endorsing jack!” I said before I turned on the hair dryer. “As a matter of fact marriage is supposed to be a celebration of starting life anew. The ba-ryde is a very important part of the wedding equation and that last time I checked she is yet alive.”

“You are being unreasonable, Sookie.” He slipped a pair of pumps on my feet as he spoke and pulled out a new cover-up that he bought for me. It kind of looked like a poncho, it left my arms free and flared out at my hips. He scooped me up and headed for the door. I had my red dress on and we were going out dancing. “Change of plans,” he said, smiling devilishly when we arrived at the airport. The private plane bore the NVL logo and I was tempted to refuse to get on. The idea of arriving at a romantic destination with my honey propelled my legs to move at record speed.

I was truly in awe as we discovered every hidden nook and sandy shore of the private isle. I knew this too belonged to the NVL. “What are you, Felipe’s new protégé?” I asked when we finally made it inside the enormous villa.

“It is an honor to be taken under the wing of Felipe de Castro.” Eric spoke as if he had just been granted access to an exclusive club. “There is so much more I can learn.” He led me to a lounger on the edge of the water and filled my champagne glass to the rim and his with TrueBlood. “Consider this a fringe benefit of being the new faces of the NVL.” He knelt beside me to make an official toast. “You, dear lover, are about to marry its crowned prince.” He leaned in for a kiss and it felt so right that I exhaled and nearly forgot to clink glasses with him. He waited patiently while I got my bearings. He was some kisser. “Welcome,” he beamed, “to Royalty.”

Had that phrase not haunted my dreams for weeks, it probably wouldn’t have bothered me. It was a blaring sign that Eric was in too deep to see through their shenanigans. There we sat alone, on a private island in paradise. I was with someone beautiful enough to inspire sonnets of love and angelic visions. Most of the time I felt like I was drowning in a lake of fire and Felipe held me under until it consumed me.

I tried my best to enjoy our romantic getaway. Well I did enjoy it, especially the midnight walks on the beach with Eric, lying in the shade under a lush canopy of trees with Eric, the love under a darkened starry sky with Eric, the bubble filled Jacuzzi with Eric. Even with Eric’s new gift, he was still a night owl and avoided the sun so I sunbathed alone. I managed to enjoy that too. My tan would be perfect and thanks to our aloneness, no bikini lines.

Night after steamy night, I noticed something. Our bond, which was tangible at one time was now paper thin. I felt some familiar tugs that told me whose I was but over all I knew that it was almost gone. Our love, however, was solid as a rock! The pressure of an impending fate drew us closer. On the final night, after making the best love ever, Eric broke my grandmother’s gold chain that I wore around my neck. It was what I used to keep my engagement ring close to my heart. He put the priceless jewel “back where it belongs,” he said, kissing my hand just below the stone. Under the heavens we vowed to let no man, or vampire put asunder.

A week in paradise was definitely not the old way of vamp persuasion. Normally, vampires do ungodly things to get their way. I could fight but in the end they would have what they wanted. At least I knew what this was about. They wanted me to see the good, marketable side of the NVL and play nice. Their new tactics were commendable.

We relaxed on the sofa, exhausted from our getaway and happy to be home. “What are you thinking about lover?” he said. I watched the sun dip out of sight through the window. I was thinking about that last love, I mean branding session, before we boarded the plane. My ass confirmed to my brain that everything in between was officially put on notice; Eric reigns supreme. I wanted to bow at his feet whenever I thought about it.

“I was counting all the frogs I had to kiss to get to my prince charming,” I said, smiling up at him. I rambled on about the human disaster dates I’d suffered through. “Then I entered the Supe world and met you. I knew the moment that I met you that I had to be a part of this world. I never dreamed that I would be your lover.” Eric gave me a slight smile but then became quiet and still. He twirled his fingers in my hair absently.

“Maybe your life would have been better had you not entered Fangtasia that night?” He wasn’t smiling. I placed my hands over his to comfort him. He had a blank expression and I wondered what he was thinking. It’s an instinctive thing for a telepath to go rummaging in the head of someone when curious. With vampires it usually gives no results. I picked something straight out of the vampire’s head and my heart dropped. It was a rare occurrence but every now a then I got a little reading from a vamp's thoughts. His thoughts enraged me and made my whole world came a crashing down.

“I knew it,” I cried, burying my face in my hands. “Bill? You condemned him to death?” I accused. “You are a liar!”

Eric’s face became whiter and I thought that wasn’t possible. He glared at me angling his head in an attempt to right the enigma. The fact that I had just read his mind was more than he could fathom. He was angry, vampire angry and his fangs ran out. I was frightened but I was angry too. His thoughts, hazy before, were clear as a bell now.

“You . . . sent him to Peru?” I said in a daze as tears fell from my face. I felt like I was in a dream, as his thoughts poured in so fast I had to block them. “Quinn? No! . . . Eric . . . Please!” I put up my hands as if I could physically stop the onslaught.

Eric wondered if I had been deceiving him all this time. “I never lie, Sookie. I always tell you the truth.” He spat, glaring at me with so much fury, quickly turning to hurt. “If you can read my thoughts Sookie, . . . you are the liar.” The latter of the phrase he purposely thought to me instead of speaking. He exited out the front door with vampiric speed, his mind screaming thoughts to me too fast to shield. There were so many things he’d done in his life, as a vampire, that he didn’t want anyone to know.

I heard a loud crashing sound outside and ran to the door. I watched him as he flew out of sight. Eric’s car was crushed on its side in my grandmother’s garden, steam rose from its belly. Well the sight pretty much summed up our night, a crumpled, hot mess. I was so upset that my whole body shook. I had just read Eric’s mind as clearly as a human’s and worst of all, he knew it. There’s the rub; Eric walks during the day, like a human and I read his thoughts like he is a human. “Fu@*#%& . . . expletive . . . expletive . . . expletive!"

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  1. I really enjoy your take on the series. You are a gifted writer and had me from the first installment. I can't wait to see what happens next.
    May 25, 2010

  2. Seems that many have been bitten by the SVM bug. Thanks for reading and your encouraging words.

    May 29, 2010