Chapter 11: Life AFTER the Trial

Note:  This chapter is un-Beta’d.  All the mistakes are mine.  Again, If there are a lot of then and that’s, it is all me I tend to use them a lot….and of course my lack of comma’s.  Happy Holidays……

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SPOV

After the survivor party life went by quickly and quietly…   It was odd to be so relaxed.  I felt alive again after 2 years, why had I not noticed that I was drowning in a sea of Quinn.   He sucked the life out of me and I didn’t even know it….

We only had a couple of weeks left before we would head home for the summer, which meant saying goodbye to a few of my close friends, but I knew in my heart that as a group of survivors we would always remain close.  We were even told that Catherine was going to be starting back at LSU in the fall and the school would make sure she was on the same floor of the dorm as us.

LSU had decided to give her a full scholarship so that she could attend the school once again…. She was very excited.

I wasn’t too sure it was the schools doing or more like Copley, but I wasn’t going to rain on her parade.

I realized something as we were getting ready to leave for the summer, I loved my life now… I loved my friends dearly… I was in love with Eric Northman……

The girls had asked me about Eric… They wanted to know if I still had my pictures and what my feelings about him were.   I didn’t know how to respond so I shrugged them off…  I thought if I avoided the questions they would give up asking…

Was I ever wrong!

It was the last weekend before school let out and we were all studying for our finals when they all seemed to glare at me once and say, “Sook we need to talk NOW.”

OH SHIT.

Amelia spoke first, “Sook, we want to know what is up with you?  We want to know if we will ever get you out on a date with someone if you are asked.   Most of all we want to know what is up with you and Eric Northman?”

I took a huge deep breath and let it out…..

Here we go…

“Girls I am fine, I have come to realize my life wasn’t mine and I was drowning in what I thought I wanted.  I wanted Quinn and a life with him… I now realize that was a foolish dream…..  He took over my life and my dreams and it took the trial for me to become aware of me again…. I am myself again…. I have dreams and I am going to follow through with them.  With the help of my family and friends I am going to heal and I am going to survive.   I am going to grow and blossom into the person I am suppose to be.”

“As for a date, please give me some time… I know the last few years have been rough for me and I understand that ya’ll have had a rough time of it too, but I am not ready yet.  Please give me some time to breath and be myself.  I am not ready for a relationship yet.  I still have some healing to do.  Please be patient with me.”

“In time I will be ready but I know my words will not stop you from trying.  I love you all and I know you have my well being in mind.”

“I also have some apologizes to make, to people who tried to help and it back fired on them. Know this, I will be fine and I will make it, I just have to do it at my own speed.  If I need your help or guidance I will let you know.”

“As for Eric Northman”

Huge intake of air and a sigh

Where to start!

I thought a moment before I begun my knowledge of what my feelings were.  I knew I needed to hold back on the I LOVE Eric Northman part but I needed to explain the rest and then maybe they would leave me be.

“I know ya’ll are worried about me.  But you needn’t be; I truly am fine.  I am happy with my life and I am happy that Eric Northman was there to help save my life.  I owe that man a HUGE debt of gratitude.  What are my feelings toward him, I am unsure, I have never met the man one on one; so I guess you could say I am infatuated with him.   Just look at him, ya’ll drool over him too; but I am so out of his league, we live in different worlds, I don’t see us ever getting together romantically; it’s just not in the cards.

 So don’t worry about me I do not pine over him (if they only knew I would be locked away).

 I may have my drool fest along with you but I know we live in different worlds.  Did I think he lusted after me while I danced for him, yes I do, but actions speak louder than words and he did not talk to me at the Extras calling…. I know now he did not get the chance because he was working but I just figured if he knew I was there he would try… It was fun, fun while it lasted.  Besides if I was ever to meet him in person I would probably pee my pants.

So like I said, I am infatuated with him and his helping me means a lot to me.  To answer a question I was asked a few weeks ago, YES I still have the autographed picture of him and yes I still look at it along with the one he took with us at Starbucks; like ya’ll don’t do the same thing for Alcide.  But I am not insane enough to think he even thinks about me; I am not even a blip on his radar…”

As I finished my little rant I saw Janice snickering and shaking her head.  I had no clue why she was giggling but I guess on the way home I could ask her, it was going to be a long drive.

The girls all agreed that I answered them truthfully and would let it rest but they would start introducing me to guys.  They all said I needed to get out in the playing field again and have some fun… I was never sexually promiscuous but I guess if I stuck around with these guys they would try to change my mind. 

Little did they know that going two years without sex was fine with me and until I found the one I wanted to be with forever I don’t think I could have random sex again; Quinn screwed me on that one. 

I guess I could give dating a try once I healed a little bit more.  Even though I knew my heart belonged forever and always to Eric.

The rest of the week went by fast.  I told Amelia and Tara I would see them in Bon Temps, that I was going to go to Merlotte’s and see if I could work the summer there again and apologize to Sam. It was long over due for the prom debacle.  I did not blame him for what he did anymore, it was a simple misunderstanding and I wanted to clear the air, 2 years was too long.

I said my goodbyes to Claudine and Maria and we all agreed we would keep in touch over the summer.  I didn’t know if that would happen but I was going to try my hardest to make it happen.

We packed up Janice’s car the night before so we could leave a little bit later than planned.   We left for Shreveport about 9am Saturday morning and knew we would get to Herveaux house about 2:30pm.  As usual we packed snacks and drinks to cut back on stops and we figured we could have a late lunch once we arrived.  Mom said she would have something waiting for us.    I was excited to see Mom and Dad again, they had become an important part of my life and I didn’t know what I would ever do without them.

After we filled up the gas tank we were off.  We sang, laughed and talk about silly things that happened throughout the year.

It was fun just like every other time we went home.

About two hours in Janice asked me a personal question that floored me.

“Sookie, I know what you told us the other day was truthful about Eric Northman…

(Here it comes)

But I know you by now and I know that you are holding something back… You seem starry eyed when his name is mentioned…  You seem more upset about him not finding you at the extra’s call then you should be.  Please talk to me I won’t tell anyone, I know your holding something back.  I want to help if I can”

Deep Breath….. Breathe Sookie breathe….

AHHH hell

“Janice, shit…. I do feel something more for him but I don’t know what to call it.  The little glimpses of him make my heart soar.  The feelings give me hope that there is someone out there for me.  Do I believe it will be him, I can dream but I am not naive enough to think he even feels the same about me or that we will ever meet one on one.  Fate is being fickle with me and him and we are not being knitted together.  Do you understand what I am trying to say?  “

Janice nodded that she knew, I wasn’t sure how but I believed her.

I told Janice, “I did not think he noticed me because of our two short sentences, our smiles, our waves, our blushes and me mouthing hello to him….  How could he want me, he can have any woman alive why would he want a small town simpleton like me? “

Janice looked pissed.   She said, “Sookie listen up, a connection is a connection whether you know if it is meant to be or not; only time will tell.  Be patient maybe you two will be thrown together when you least expect it.   Time tells all.  Give your heart a chance if he ever does find you again.”    

It was really strange but Janice had an evil looking smirk on her face.

 What the hell is up with that?

Then I realized she knew something and wasn’t telling me.  I would get it out o f her but I wouldn’t push.

I could wait; it would reveal itself sooner or later………… hopefully sooner. 

The plan was for me to be at the Herveaux’s for a week before I went home for the summer.  I was looking forward to the peace, quiet and their HUGE pool.

When we got to her house Mom and Dad were out front waiting on us.  It was nice of them to include me in as one of the family members. Mom told us lunch was ready and that dad would unpack the car so we could eat.

I was so excited to be there it didn’t even bother me that I was being waited on hand and foot. It was really nice to be loved.

As we ate mom talked to us about my visit and if we had any plans.  Janice told her we would just be hanging out and relaxing.  I told her I was anxious to get home to Gran but I wanted to unwind first. She said she thought that was a good idea. She let us know that she was going into town shortly in case we needed anything.  I couldn’t think of anything and Janice said she was good.

We decided it was time to go unpack our clothes.  I always stayed in Janice’s room with her but when I got there my stuff wasn’t in there.  I went searching for dad to ask him where he put it.

I found him across the hall in one of the spare rooms.

I asked him what was up. He and mom told me that they had decided that I needed my own room so they made this room up for me with Gran’s help… As I looked around I saw pictures and stuff from my room at Gran’s house and I started to cry…

I turned and looked at them and asked “why?”

Dad said, “Sookie we love you as our own and we wanted you to have something that belonged to you here; we wanted you to always feel welcome in our home, a family member.   We spoke with Adele about this several times so that we could do everything right for you, we know we won’t replace your parents or your Gran but we want you to know you will always have a place in our home; yes your Gran is okay with this.  Just so you know we take family very seriously and we have only ever extended this offer to one other person besides you; he is a friend of our son’s and I don’t know if you will ever be here at the same time as he is but if you are please show him the same respect that you would show us.”

“Welcome to the family honey.”

I sat on the edge of the bed and cried…. I was never so shocked or so happy… The H’s made me feel wanted by someone other than my Gran and Jason.  I didn’t know what to say so I sprang from the bed and hugged my pseudo parents.

Mom then excused herself to go over to Janice’s room to get her.  They wanted to show me one more thing but they wanted us together, it was down stairs…  I was curious about what was up but I told my curiosity to stifle itself and wait for what would be revealed to me momentarily….

I was extremely nervous, what else had they done? They had already done so much for me! 

Janice was curious too since she was as clueless as I was.

We all walked over to the garage

Not good

Dad stopped outside the one garage door and he asked us to stop.  I knew this was where I parked my car at the beginning of the school year and after the Holiday break…..    Oh shit

This was not a good sign…                                

I wondered what happened.

Dad and Mom were both nervous…. Dad was sweating, oh crap what happened?

“Please tell me what happened to my car, I know this is the garage door my car is behind.”

Dad started to talk, “well you see it had a little accident.”      (I gasped)

“Dad please tell me what happened.”

 “Well you see Alcide was home visiting with two of his friends from work.  On one of the days he and Eric left for an errand Pam happened to still be sleeping so they didn’t wake her.  When she woke up later, Pam realized she was home by herself and she needed to go to town to buy some feminine products because she was out.  She couldn’t find any keys but yours hanging up on the hook so she figured it would be alright to take your car since we had told her she could use any vehicle that was available…  Well, we had a rock slide up the road that day and your car happened to get crushed by one of the giant boulders that fell down the hillside.  Pam suffered a small head injury but it has since healed.  However, you car is another story… The insurance agent came by and looked at it and said there was no way to repair it so it had to be totaled.  I wanted you to see the car before we towed it away so that you can see what it ended up looking like once it was towed back from the accident.  I am so sorry Sookie, Sabrina and I did not want you to be without a car, so we called Adele to get her suggestions and they only thing she advised us on was something sensible. “

“Jackson what did you and Sabrina buy me? I know it is more than I can afford and you have already done so much for me… I can’t accept this without the opportunity to pay you back.”

“Sookie, sweetie, we know you want to make payment arrangements, but the car is paid for.  We took the settlement money and added to it, even Adele added a little.  We stayed modest and we think you will like what we bought.  It’s not the same as what you had but we feel that you will be safer and the car is in excellent shape. “

“Okay let’s see it.”

Slowly dad opened the door.  The first thing I saw was my old car, oh my stars… All I could think of was I was glad Pam only suffered a small injury. I walked around it and gasped, the passenger door was hanging off and it looked like the driver’s seat was floating inside…  Oh my, what a mess…

“Dad are you sure Pam is okay?”  

 Oh my gosh, is that blood on the window and dash?

Janice was right behind me and she gasped…  She shuttered and said, “Pam was lucky there was no passenger or they would have been gravely hurt by the boulder.” 

We both asked at the same time if we could be taken to the crash site. 

Dad said he would go with us shortly after he got settled with mom and her grocery list.   We all laughed, she was always working on a grocery list. 

 Janice said she was glad her brother wasn’t home or the list would be much bigger.

 Dad said that Alcide and his friends were here for a month or so, it was like feeding an army, but then again the army was usually drunk so they mainly lived off a liquid diet.

Dad said, now for the reveal of your new car.

Janice came and stood beside me and we held hands.  I didn’t know what to expect but it was nothing like I saw before me.  This car could NOT have been a used car; it looked NEW to me… WHAT had they done?

There before me was a 4-door Toyota Camry; it was metallic blue with tan interior.  As we looked inside we saw my stuff had been transferred from my Tercel …

 I noticed it had a CD player in the dash.    This was not a used vehicle… It had to be new.

 OH MY STARS

I turned to dad and glared at him.  “This is not a used vehicle, it’s brand new and I cannot accept it.”

Dad glared back at me and said, “Fine check the glove compartment if you don’t believe it is used.”  

Hells bells, it was used, it was a previously leased car and apparently Mr. H. got it for a steal at a used car lot in Shreveport.   

I turned to him and apologized about not trusting him.

He said it was okay, he would have shown me the car during our spring break while we were here but Janice and I were busy with our visit and with my unexpected visit with Gran everything about the car got put on the back burner.

I thanked him again and told Janice now she didn’t have to car pool with me anymore. 

She looked devastated.

Mr. H. said, “Cool your jets young lady.  Sabrina, Adele and I have spoken about this very thing after you all went back to school in April and we all agreed, WE prefer you two to travel together you can take turns driving one of your cars.  We feel it is safer for you as a team then to go separate.  The only negotiation you will have is whose car to take AND I will still be paying for the gas.  This is non-negotiable.”

I huffed at him but nodded, I knew I wouldn’t win and I am sure if I kept up my tirade Mr. H. would have Gran on the phone instantaneously.      

Of that I was absolutely sure.

 

Dad drove us to the crash site in my new car.   I told him I wanted to feel how it drove while being in the passenger seat; to be honest I was afraid of it. I was so use to my tiny Tercel, I wasn’t sure if I could drive a bigger car.   It rode comfortably, so Janice and I said we would take my car first when school started back up. 

When we arrived at the crash site we were amazed to see these TWO HUGE boulders on the side of the road.    You could physically see the skid marks from my car and all I could think of was I sure hope Pam is okay. 

I started to cry, I couldn’t believe someone got hurt in my car.  I knew she could have been in any of the cars from the Herveaux’s house but it hit me hard that she was hurt in mine.

Dad looked at me and just shook his head as we got out of the car; he gave me a hug and told me it wasn’t my fault; Pam was okay, not to worry, it was just a small head wound and she was fine.

 We looked at the boulder and you could see yellow paint all over the side of the biggest boulder.    I went over and touched it and cried some more.

 What if she wasn’t okay? Damn, I knew I needed to shore my shields up because I was getting too emotional.   It was done and over with; I was told she was fine but I knew if I ever saw Pam I would be apologizing to her in a heart beat for getting hurt while in my car.

Dad asked if we were ready to go back home and if I wanted to drive.  I looked at him and then my car and said yes, but it squeaked out like I was a little mouse.

I was so nervous.

We all laughed as I got in the car, did I tell you I am only 5’5” at the most and Mr. H is 6’5” and the seat was set for him not me… I couldn’t even touch the gas or brake pedals….  I tried to touch them but to reach I had to lay in the sit and I couldn’t see out the front window.

I laughed so hard I nearly peed my pants.

Gosh, I needed that laugh.

He explained to me that the car seat was electric so there was a control on the side of the seat to move me forward. 

 As I adjusted the seat I thanked him again and we were off for home.

The week went by fairly quickly for Janice and I; we lay out by the pool most of time and just relaxed.

It was soothing and comforting and while we sunbathed we sang and talked a bit.   We spoke a little bit more about Eric but never when her parents were within ear shot.   We decided if there was another EXTRA’S call we would defiantly be going.  Maybe we would find Felicia and ask her to go to dinner with us.   We had a plan but didn’t know if it would happen again, how many out of area location shoots do they go to every year, if any?

 The day came for me to leave and I was excited to go home to Gran but I was upset because I would miss the H’s dearly.   They were my family and I enjoyed their company.     I also knew I would miss the opportunity to meet the ghost again…. Alcide was coming home for a few weeks and they were hoping I would be formally introduced to him…   It was funny that Mom and Dad had a son and I never really met him, I was told his job keeps him away from home and busy so I never pushed about it.   I figured sooner or later I would meet him and then I would know my new brother.

 I knew I had to leave, I had things I needed to do for Gran and I needed to make a little extra money for my expenses for next year. 

I needed to get home soon so that I could go by Merlotte’s and see if I could work there for the summer before other out of school kids beat me to it.  I knew that my relationship with Sam was strained after the incident from prom but I was going to give it a shot.

I had a nice tan by the time I left the Herveaux’s to head home to Gran’s.  

I was beaming with a positive attitude, I was told that’s what happens after a trial; you are able to relax…..   I wore my survivor necklace with pride, it was now my only tangible link to Eric and I was never going to take it off.   Yes, I had my pictures, yes I had my memories and YES I had my daily talks but the necklace was special to me, I couldn’t explain the feelings it gave me……

I still had a few more episodes of “Blood Moon” to watch before the season was over but the necklace seemed to mean more to me that anyone possibly could imagine.

It was AWESOME!

I knew then more than ever that I was in love with my savior and soul mate, but I also knew I had to be realistic about it never happening.  Like Gran said I had to keep my heart open just in case I met someone else.  It took me a little over 40 minutes to get home and when I did Gran and Jason were standing on the stoop waving at me and holding a WELCOME HOME banner. 

It was beautiful.

I ran to them and thanked them.   It was going to be a good summer.

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2 thoughts on “Chapter 11: Life AFTER the Trial

  1. What a lovely chapter!
    Sookie is blessed to have family and friends that love and support her!
    Liked how Sookie continued to ask if Pam was okay after seeing her car and the two boulders…if she knew the truth!
    Must get going…
    I want to wish you and your loved ones a Happy New Year!
    Enjoy yourself and take care…

    • thanks for reading and you are half way through, glad you are liking the story. Sook has a big heart that is for sure. Happy New Year to you too and have a safe night. until you read again. Hugs KY

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