Chapter 23: Bon Temps

EPOV

Her words kept echoing through my head.

“I knew I wasn’t good enough for him”.

I kept trying to figure out a way to fix this.  I knew the video was bogus and I knew in my heart I would never propose to Dawn fucking Green.  But how was I going to figure out what happened.

I contacted my friends the day after the video was released and asked them if they would meet me somewhere private, I needed to find out what happened while we were out clubbing, we decided it was best to meet at my mom’s house so we could all talk about what we remembered from that night and no one could hear us.

When Johan and Gustaf came by they looked as defeated as I did.

 They told me they were sorry I lost my girl and they felt responsible.  I told them I was the one responsible for this mess; if I had just told her EVERYTHING none of this would have happened.

As we talked we figured out that when we arrived at the fourth club we were being watched by some lanky bloke. He was kind of creeping out Gustaf so they thought it best to leave.  It was apparently during this time that Johan had taken my phone away from me because I had called Sookie and left her a voice mail letting her know that I missed her.   It was also at this club that the guys saw Dawn lurking on the outskirts of the club’s dance floor watching us.

When we got up to leave she approached Gustaf and asked if she could hang out with us.    Him not knowing she was an EX of mine told her sure the more the merrier.  I didn’t notice she was there until we arrived at the next club when she sat down next to me and struck up a conversation.  I was kind of out of it but being raised as a polite gentleman I talked to her any way.

 Let’s just say, I was feeling no pain and she was the least of my worries.

 It was then that she asked me to dance.  I don’t remember dancing with her but the guys said I told her what the hell, I wasn’t with anyone.  It was the only dance I apparently had with her because she was trying to hug and hold onto me and I wanted nothing to do with it even in my drunken stupor.  

Nothing is worse then somebody trying to dirty dance when you’re drunk as a skunk and you are unable to hold yourself up.   The guys said I didn’t do too badly but I got more aggravated when she would try to wrap her arms around my neck or waist.

I told her to back the fuck off and walked off the dance floor.

She told me she missed me and I apparently told her the only person I missed was Sookie.  That one day I was going to marry Sookie and have babies with her. 

The guys said she was livid after I told her to fuck off and she told me that I told her once that I loved her and I would marry her.  I know for a fact I NEVER told her either statement.  However,   I really don’t remember this conversation at all but since Johan was the designated driver he was the coherent one and the only one able to remember what was said.

Apparently I let Dawn know that when it was time for me to marry anyone, I would get down on bended knee and propose to the love of my life and soul mate.   I would present her with a ring and ask her the following question, “Will you marry me.” 

It was after I said this that lanky fuck was noticed at the next table from us with his cell phone to his ear. 

The guys decided it was time to get out of there because I was turning into an angry drunk and they knew me well enough to know that I wouldn’t want to embarrass myself so they took me back to their place.

Dawn didn’t follow but they did see her talking to the lanky bloke as we were leaving.

Johan said he didn’t think much of it until now.  Now he knew they were both following us and he might have been taping us with his phone.  But he was sure of one thing I never once proposed to Dawn.  But I had said enough for him to tape and be used and then dubbed onto a video.

FUCK ME.

I was set up, but by whom?

I told the guys we needed to find that lanky fucker so I could find out who was behind this. 

But instead we found someone better.

It took us a couple of days but we were able to track down Dawn, apparently she was staying at the Gran Hôtel Stockholm and Johan knew the concierge so he was able to get her room number and such.  He found out that the room was being paid for by a credit card from the United States and had a Louisiana address.

That’s when it all clicked, Fucking Compton.

But I knew before we pursued Dawn, I needed to make a statement to the press to clear up this mess and hopefully Sookie would believe me.

I called ‘The Local’ and ‘Stockholm News’ and they sent over a very nice young girl to interview me. It wasn’t an interview just a press release of a statement in my own words.    I gave her the statement that I had written out and I asked her to please publish it in tomorrow’s paper as I wanted the story to end since it was untrue.

The statement read as follow, “The statements and video that had been release about me a few nights ago were fabricated and untrue.  At no time had I ever asked Dawn Green to marry me.  I do not know how she obtained a video of us dancing and me asking her to marry her but it is false. The video is very grainy and the words are too loud for it to be an actual video since we were in only two clubs where Dawn Green was sited with us, ‘Solidaritet’ and ‘V pä Sturecompagniet’  where the noise level is very loud.  To clarify, I never would have asked her to marry me since my heart belongs to another.  At this time she is not with me and I do hope that the press can see it in their hearts to leave her alone.  The press has made a mockery of my relationship with her and caused numerous problems between us.  I will only state this once; I am a private individual and I ask for my life with whomever I choose to be with to remain private.  If and when I ask the love of my life to marry me I will let you all know. Thank you.”

The young reporter was grateful for my statement and hurried off.  Now I just needed to make sure Sookie saw it, but how.  I would let Alcide and Gran know and hopefully they would pass on the information to her.  But for now I needed to talk to Dawn to find out if indeed Compton put her up to this.

I asked the boys to go with me because I did not want to be alone with that woman and more lies be spread. 

We hurried over to the hotel since it was close to supper time and we did not want to have to wait around for her if she went out.   We got there just as she was getting ready to leave; Johan pushed her back into the room so no one would hear our discussion out in the hall.

 She was not happy to see us. She asked us to leave and I told her once she answered our questions she could go on her merry way but not until I had some answers.

She scowled at me but said she would answer.

I was a bit pissed and didn’t know where to start so Johan did.

Q1- “Who put you up to following us?”

D- “I was contacted by a PI named Todd Donati and he told me that a concerned individual wanted me to get back into your life so that you would leave his girlfriend alone.”

Q2- “Do you have a name of this concerned individual?”

D-“No, I was just told that he is an important business man in Shreveport and Bon Temps Louisiana.”

FUCKING COMPTON, what the hell was he up to?

Q3-“How did you know Eric was in Sweden?”

D-“Donati had been following Eric until he reached the airport and then he called his guy over here who was trying to get more information on you. He told him to meet up with you when you got off the plane. His name is Don Dominica.”

Q4-“What else do you know?” 

D-“I was talked to over the phone by a guy named Jesse Compton and he told me that he needed me to do a favor for his nephew and that I would be paid for my acting skills.  I don’t know how they knew that I knew you but he said that if anyone could get between you and the concerned individual’s girl it would be me.  I know we ended on a bad note but I didn’t think you hated me.”

E-“Bad Note you were fucking someone else at the same time we were together and yelled out his name while we were having sex for Christ sakes.”

Q5-“Who else contacted you?”

D- “When I reached Sweden this Don Dominica guy had me set up here, all expenses paid, and told me if he needed me he would call.  The night you guys went out he called me and told me where to meet up with you.”

Q6-“What else were you paid to do?

She hesitated so I think she had a guilty conscious but I wasn’t sure.

D-“ To get you to say the words we needed for the video and if possible get you back here and have sex with you so….”

FUCK, no doubt for another video.   At least she seemed embarrassed about it since she could finish her sentence.

I couldn’t be in the room with her any more and I told the guys we needed to leave, I needed to call my lawyers.  There was something far worse going on then we had ever suspected. 

Before I left I told Dawn if she ever stepped foot in front of me again she wouldn’t appreciate the foot up her ass that she would get from me.  I never loved her and I never would.  She is a gold digging FAME whore and nothing more. 

We turned around and left.

 We headed to my mom’s house to make the phone calls I needed to make; first my lawyer, then Mr. C and then Jackson.  They all needed to know Compton was up to no good and it concerned Sookie.

My mind wondered as we headed back, I knew Compton gave Sookie the creeps and I know that he had been in Gran’s home but why? 

What was his end game?

 He was married, but why did he call her his girlfriend?

The more I thought about it the more things started to click in my mind.  And I am positive after I spoke with Jackson more would come to light.

When we arrived back at my mom’s she had just walked in so we told her what happened and I asked if she would sit with me while I made the phone calls, I needed her beside me for moral support; so she did what any mom would do and sat beside me and held my hand while I made the phone calls.

I first called Northman Enterprise’s lawyers to let them know what I had found out and that they needed to dig more since he wasn’t only going after my character now.  If he kept on the same course as he was Compton’s meddling would affect business.  They were not happy and finally jumped on the band wagon with the rest of us.

I then called Mr. C., he was more our lawyer than anyone else and I told him what Compton had done, even though he didn’t use his own name he used his uncle’s.  Mr. C asked me if I had any more info and I told him what Dawn had told us and how things were now starting to click, the paparazzi at Sookie’s graduation, her being told everything about my double life and now this.  That I knew Compton had an uncle named Jesse but Gran said he died some years back.   I told him that I thought Sookie was in danger and I didn’t think Compton would stop short of hurting her mentally and physically.  I didn’t know why he was after her but he was.  Mr. C said he would get a private investigator started on things and look into Donati and Dominica.

My mind wander to a previous conversation I had before I made my next phone call.  Johan asked me what did I just think of and I told him of the conversation I had with Gran and Jason and what Gran had said stuck in my head.

Gran said, “Honey I agree with Jason and you need to get this over with soon, before someone hired by Compton tracks Sookie down and lets the cat out of the bag.  He might not know she doesn’t know but that doesn’t mean he is not going to play dirty and uproot Sookie’s life too.”

Johan agreed, he also said that he could take some time off if I needed him back in Louisiana with me so that he could watch out for my girls.  Gustaf said he had time to and they could take turns if needed.  I told them I would let them know and I appreciated the offers.

 Mom spoke up and told me I needed to call Jackson right now so that he could make sure Sookie and Gran were protected in case Compton was up to no good.

I was nervous because I didn’t want to make the call.  It had only been a couple of weeks since the blow up and over a week since the newspapers and video release.   I knew it needed to get done and the sooner the better but I didn’t want to break Sookie’s heart anymore than I did already.  But I knew if I waited any longer more shit could happen.  How the hell was I going to protect someone who hated me and wouldn’t even talk to me?

I called Jackson, I had forgotten about the 4th of July celebration and Sookie’s birthday and I just realized that she was given the RAG magazines a day before her birthday.  FUCK…. What a birthday present.  I had a present for her but it was at the H’s and I didn’t tell her about it.  It was in my sock drawer and that is where it will remain until she will have me in her life again.

If I hadn’t lost her already it would be a freaking miracle.

He told me everyone was fine and Sookie was holed up once again in her room.

He said the video got to her more than the magazines.

He told me that she saw the video with everyone else while they were at Gran’s and she handled it well but withdrew again into herself and doesn’t come out of her room much.  She did however make the statement that she needed to get back to her life and she was going to start going out and filling out applications for a job.  Gran told her not to rush anything but her stubborn streak started to show and she said she was getting a job come hell or high water.

 He said that Gran watched her get herself together in the morning and head out to go about different parishes and apply at their schools.  By the end of this week she would be finished with all the local schools and she was deciding on whether or not to apply further away and move. 

I didn’t want her to move that was her home, our home, I needed her to stay close to it.

 If she left I would never have a chance.

After dad filled me in on what was going on with Sookie I told him why I called.  I told him about what Dawn said, what my lawyers and Mr. C said.  I needed him to worn Gran and they needed to be on the lookout for anything shady going on around them.  To be ever vigilant.

He agreed and we brainstormed about what we knew already about Compton.

1, he let himself into their home before the locks were changed.  Why?

2, he creeped out Sookie, that was a given.

3, he counter sued us, we only filed harassment, what was he up to?

4, he left the Rag magazines (it had to have been him).

5, he knew we lied about being married, but why did it matter to him?

6, he tried to get the farmhouse, why, what was his end game?

7, he hired Dawn, Donati and Dominica

8, he told the paparazzi about Sookie

9, he told the paparazzi about her graduation

10, he told NE that Sookie had talked me into buying a piece of worthless property

11, His lawsuit stated we had harassed him and caused bodily harm to him on two separate occasions; we never touched him and had witnesses to no physical assaults.

12, the bank account in Sookie’s name that I set up for her gold-digging ways (how did he find out about that)

The list was getting longer and longer and the more we thought about things the more we realized the catalyst behind it was all Compton. 

We had our work cut out for us and since I didn’t have any work lined up until ‘Blood Moon’  started to shoot again I would be paying a visit to NE and it’s lawyers and I would pay a visit to Shreveport to try and straighten out the mess I started.  

The only thing we couldn’t figure out was why Compton wanted to hurt Sookie. What were his intentions with her?

He never had a chance with her, one he was married and two he gave her the creeps. But it still hung in the back of my mind that he was up to no good like Quinn had been.

I was hoping I was wrong.

I let dad know that I would be headed home in August to spend some time with them and get with Mr. C on what we learned but in the mean time I would finish my visit with my mom, stay out of the paparazzi’s camera lenses and visit Northman Enterprises.

He told me to be careful and he would watch out for the girls.  He would talk to everyone and set up a scheduled so they were never alone.   But he would have to let Sookie know when I would be in town, she hadn’t been back to the H’s since she stormed out and they had been trying to get her to visit.  Right now they only visit’s they had were Sunday suppers at Gran’s.  I let dad know that I would set up a routine of phone calls to Gran too so that she could let me know if anything was amiss.

We had a solid plan, now we just had to follow through with it and find out what Compton was up to.

I wasn’t too sure how dad would break this down to everyone but I knew they would have Sookie and Gran’s backs.

I hung up and looked at my mom and told her that I think I fucked the pooch this time and I would never get Sookie back.  I might be able to convince her years down the line that we should be friends but I might have ruined any chances of her ever being my wife.

Mom’s response made me want to cry and I didn’t care that Johan and Gustaf were there. “Son, I have never meddled in your life before but if you truly want her back in your life you are going to have to win her back.  You are going to have to get this lawsuits mess out of the way first and then start on wooing her back.  You made a mess of things by only telling her half truths.  You need to fess up to what mistakes you made and the issues you caused from them; you have to take all the blame for both of your mistakes.  But know this, if her love for you is as strong for you as is yours is for her then you simply have to grovel and grovel a lot to win her forgiveness.  But before you do this you need to have all your ducks in a row and you need to make sure there is nothing else hiding out there that will hurt her. You have to be an open book to her and there be no hidden agendas.  That is how your father and I lasted for as long as we did until he died.  I wanted nothing to do with his wealth and he knew it, that’s why I signed the pre-nup to prove I loved him not his money.   He was more than happy for me to be the doctor I wanted to be and allowed for me to have and follow my dreams.  Your Sookie is the same; she has her dreams and you have to let her follow through with them.  I am here for you whenever you need me.  I love you like you are my own and that will never change.”

Mom was right I needed to make things right and I needed to make sure everything was fixed before I even tried to get her to agree to be in my life again.  I knew it would be a long haul but it was one I was willing to do.

The month flew by.

I paid a visit to NE and talked everything out with the board and the lawyers.  They were still checking into Compton but had no solid leads.  When we spoke with Mr. C during a conference call more had come to light about Compton.  Apparently he had made some pretty shady business deals and Mr. C thinks that is what prompted him to go after NE, he needed money.   He was still trying to find out why he was going after Sookie since he was supposedly happily married and that would take some time to find out but he had a good team of private investigators and he was willing to use every means possible to find the truth.  I told him it didn’t matter what the cost I would pay for it personally if I had to.  The board agreed that since NE was being brought into the lawsuit that the company would pay for it.  The board told Mr. C that they were grateful he was on board and appreciated his due diligence.

I spent a few more days with them since I would not have time until January to come back in for meetings.

 I also knew the lawsuits were due for trial in November and I would have to be present.

 So I called Felicia and let her know what was up because it would interrupt the tapings of ‘Blood Moon’ if I needed to be there.  She told me she would get with the executives and let them know, she said they could work around it and the shoots would have to go on for longer this year if need be so that everything could be done in a timely fashion, she told me that as long as we got everything shot before March we would be fine for the May release of episode 1.

I also let her know that the movies that I worked on the previous year were due to be released and I would have to be able to get to the premiers, I didn’t know the schedules yet but since two movies were coming out a week apart I would probably be spending a lot of time on planes so she needed to make sure my scenes were shot on the same days to let me be able to travel.  It was gonna be a hell  of a time for me but I knew I needed to do it, I was a professional and I wouldn’t let my movies fail because I had already let my personal life fail.

My next stop was Shreveport and I didn’t make it there until the third week of August. I didn’t stay in Shreveport for very long and it took all of my control not to drive out to Bon Temps, I needed to see her.  I wanted to call her to hear her voice but I knew that I would be pushing my luck on that, so I backed off. 

I spoke with Gran a few times while I was there and I told her what was happening and I let her know about the movie releases and she wished me luck.  She told me no matter what she still wanted me in her life and she knew deep down Sookie did too but that hard headed child would have to come to that conclusion herself.  I told Gran I would give her all the time in the world if it meant her being mine again.

Gran tried to keep me positive about my life and she told me that she was there whenever I needed her. 

I was extremely grateful that this woman came into my life.  I don’t know what I would have done without her wisdom.

I was contacted by my agent that the movies were being released early and I was needed back in LA.  So I left right after Labor Day, I said my goodbyes and I told everyone that was at the H’s that I would talk to them as often as I could.

Alcide and Pam said they would meet up with me in a couple of weeks.   Jason was going to fly out with them and visit for a couple of weeks and do the touristy thing.   My only wish was that he could talk Sookie into coming too but I knew that was a long shot.

When I arrived back in LA I was called into my agent’s office and given a schedule of events.  I was going to be busy until November with these two movies and their premiers coinciding at the same time.  I told my agent Ra Shawn that November was going to be tough since I was involved in a lawsuit and the trial would start sometime that month.  He told me we would work around it but until that time my ass was his.  

 He also let me know that the studio’s wanted me to travel with my female co-stars in both movies and go with them as my date to the premiers.  I tried to get out of it because I didn’t want to give Sookie more ammunition against me but Ra told me I didn’t have a choice, to get over myself and to make damn sure that whenever I was with either female to act like I wanted to be with them and that I was happy and enjoying their company.

I knew I could act it out and I knew I enjoyed their company because they were good people and friends but I knew in my heart it was like cheating on Sookie.  I didn’t know if I would ever get over her and I didn’t want to.

That woman bewitched me and had my heart.

It was at the end of September that the press junkets and premiers started and I had seen some of the pictures on the RAG magazines and I was hoping and praying that Sookie would know it was all a lie. I wanted her to remember the words I had told her so long ago that if she had questions to ask me to not assume the worst but since we were on the outs I wasn’t too sure if that would happen.  Hopefully she would ask Gran because Gran knew all about the terms given to me by the studios and my companions.  

I knew I looked happy and I was to an extent but it wasn’t because I was with these women intentionally, I was happy because I was enjoying myself with some good friends.    I was hoping and praying Sookie would know that.

It wasn’t until the last photo that I saw plastered across the RAGS that I had other thoughts.  It looked to me like I was in love with my co-star.  I had my arms wrapped around her and I was snuggling into her side and my face was in the curve of her neck where I could not hide my huge smile.   I liked her but only as a friend and she knew all about my troubles and how much I loved Sookie.  She said she was okay with our arrangement but towards the end of the press junket I think her feelings changed even though mine hadn’t.   

I was happy that ‘Blood Moon’ had started taping and I could get away from the press for a while.  I needed the hoopla to die down.  I needed for Sookie to realize that even when I went out on fun dates with her it was part of the studios plan to help with the press of the movie.

 If Sookie and I had been engaged I think I could have gotten out of that little term but since I was single I was at their mercy.

The holidays were fast approaching and Gran had kept me up to date on Sookie and her part time teaching job, she became a substitute teacher  for a couple of the parishes so she didn’t have a set schedule.  I was hoping by the time I arrived for Thanksgiving she would be willing to sit down and talk to me.  I had high hopes but I wasn’t going to try and stack the deck with those hopes.  Gran had said she often asked how I was but never took it farther than that.  I knew she was stilled pissed at me but I really needed to talk to her and I needed to talk to her before the trial started. 

As October flew by as did the beginning of November.

The trial was set to start the week after Thanksgiving and the cast and crew were alerted to me not being around for some of the shoots.  If there was a scene I needed to be in we would make special arrangements for me to shoot it another day and or carry it over to the New Year.  Everyone was in agreement that it would be okay to postpone their shoots with me.  The writers even wrote into the story about how Bastian disappeared one night while at the vamp club so it gave me a few episodes not to worry about, which also led to the season being of the dark nature.   It helped that I was already brooding so it didn’t take much for my scenes to be shot since I would nail the shot on the first take.

 I was happy at least one facet of my life was working out.

I arrived in Shreveport on Saturday the 18th of November and went straight to the H’s house.  I wanted to go to Bon Temps but I needed to wait, I needed to run by the bank and speak with the bank manager about my personal account and then out to the farmhouse but I needed to make sure I was welcome by at least one of the house mates.

I spoke with Gran on Sunday and she let me know to come over to the house on Monday for lunch and we would sit down and talk to Sookie.  Gran had decided that Sookie had enough time to sulk and she needed to snap out of it.  The omission I made was a small one compare to what I could have left out.  I told Gran that it was still my fault  and I was taking responsibility for my error in judgment since I didn’t tell her everything and kept putting it off; it backfired in my face and I lost the most important thing in my life because of it.

Gran told me to say that exact thing to Sookie…  It wasn’t like the family hadn’t told her I was going to tell her, I just hadn’t found the right time to tell her. I know it was an excuse and a piss poor one at that but it was what had happened.

After I hung up with Gran, Alcide let me know he was going to go over for dessert and he would feel Sookie out to see if she was receptive to me being in town.  When he returned later that evening he said she never really mentioned me except to say that she hasn’t watched ‘Blood Moon’ since last May.  I was a bit shocked since she loved the show.  Alcide also mentioned that her reason was because she couldn’t watch the show and see me, it hurt her too much. 

Well I guess that was my answer to how she still felt.  She was still hurting and it lay totally on my shoulders.

He said the rest of the night they talked about Jason and Pam’s wedding.  While they were still talking she excused herself and went to bed early.

Alc said she looked good, she was in good spirits but he knew her heart was aching as much as mine was.  

I let him know that while he was gone Mr. C had called to let us know that he had gotten some more information about Compton.  Apparently Compton sweet talked a teller into telling him about the account I set up for Jason and Sookie.  He had seen me in there while I was setting it up and he turned his southern charm on and the teller spilled about who was on the account and how much was deposited.  That the account only had one signature on it and the second would be added once Sookie was in town.    He also found out about the money I directly deposited into Gran’s personal account and that I had set up a personal account for myself that same day.

 I asked how his PI got the information from the teller, Selma Pumphrey, and he said the same way Compton did, she was a sucker for a charming face and a sexy grin.  He said his PI, Jake Purifoy, went into town and struck up a conversation with her and asked the right questions.  He was a young PI but he was good at his job and the ladies liked him.

I wasn’t happy about how he got the information and I was already going to head to the bank to make a deposit but now I needed to speak with the branch manager about this issue too and to have this teller fired for privacy and confidentiality issues.   If she told Compton and Purifoy about my three accounts then god only knows how many others she told Compton about. 

Alcide agreed with me and wished me luck in the morning.

I retired to bed shortly after and thought about what I needed to do.  The trial started in less than a week and I needed to make sure we had Sookie in our corner, we still didn’t know why Compton was targeting her and I was hoping to keep her out of the trial.  The one she went through with Quinn was enough she didn’t need another one under her belt.

I woke up about 8am and got a shower and had something to eat.  Jackson was already up and getting ready to head into work.  He wanted to make sure everything was caught up before the trial since he was involved in it too and would have to be there like me.  Alcide told him he would help where he could but he had to go back to LA the 2nd week of December.    That gave us 2 weeks to rap the trial up and serve Compton’s ass on a platter.

It was about 9:30am when I left for Bon Temps, my mind never shut off while I was driving.  I called the bank and let Mr. Jeff Puckett know I was on my way in and I needed to speak to him about a personal matter and a bank matter. 

He told me his morning was free and I told him I would be there shortly.

When I arrived at the bank there were only a few people in the lobby and two tellers at the windows.  It was a quiet day and I was glad that Mr. Puckett had a door to his office, we needed privacy, his office was made out of glass and people could see in but they wouldn’t be able to hear us.

I was cordial to him and as he led me towards his office, I had dealt with him before so I really didn’t need to be introduced again but it still felt off like I was headed to the principal’s office.

After we both sat down I explained to him what I needed, first I needed to open up a joint account for Pam and Jason and I needed to open up another account for Gran.   He told me he would handle both discreetly and get the paperwork ready for the signatures.  I told him I appreciated his help but I needed to speak to him about another matter. 

Once the accounts were set up and the signers only had to come in and sign the signature card, I let him know about the other reason I was there.  I explained to him about the harassment lawsuit that was going to trial next week and I explained to him how Mr. Compton had gotten his information about all of the accounts I had opened at his bank and I told him there was a possibility he would be called into verify this information.  If we could settle the lawsuit prior then he probably would not be called in to testify but if he was he needed to make sure Miss Pumphrey was also available after he fired her for breach of confidentiality.

He agreed she needed to be fired and he wanted to do it while Bud Dearborn was present.  I told him that made sense since Bud was already involved in the lawsuit too.  He placed the call to Bud and he said he would be there in about five minutes and while we waited he went and collected Miss Pumphrey from behind the teller window.   

I was just looking around the lobby when I saw who I thought was Sookie but when I readjusted my line of sight no one was there so I figured I was just seeing things.  There had been many times where I had thought I saw her and it was just my imagination.

Once Puckett and Pumphrey got back to the office Bud walked in the lobby and headed for the office.

I could tell from her face that she was clueless about what was happening but it was a small victory for me.  It gave me a little bit of pleasure that second snitch of Compton’s team was gone. 

She was shocked that she had been found out and she even told Puckett and Dearborn about other accounts she had told Compton about.  It seemed that he had been interested in the Stackhouse’s for a while but she didn’t know why.  She said she had told him about other accounts too, it seemed whoever had a little bit of property in Bon Temps was a target and that included the handymen I had hired Calvin Norris.   Bud just shook his head and said this is much bigger than we thought.

Yes it was.  What the hell was Compton up to and why was he targeting Sookie’s family.

Bud told Selma to not leave town and if she did then the bank would press charges for her breech of confidentiality and she would be more tarnished then she already was when Maxine found out what she did. 

Well mentioning Maxine’s name was enough for her to ask us to please not tell anyone why she got fired and she wouldn’t cause any more problems.  Maybe she wasn’t cut out for banking.

DUH

I said my goodbyes and headed out the door to head to Gran’s.  As I was on my way I called dad and told him what I had found out and that the ban teller was fired but Bud told her she would be arrested if she skipped town.  I knew that couldn’t happen but if she was stupid enough to believe that she wasn’t breeching privacy and confidentiality acts by giving out information about clients then she was stupid enough to think she would get arrested for leaving town.   She was lucky the branch manager wasn’t getting her arrested, if she was in a bigger town she would be in jail right now.

I reached the farmhouse and only saw Gran’s car.  My heart sank a little bit not seeing Sookie’s but maybe she was out for a little while and would be back later.  It didn’t matter I wasn’t going anywhere until we talked and my room had clothes in it so I was good to go.

Gran greeted me with a smile and a hug.  She told me Sookie stepped out for a bit and would be back, she just didn’t know when.   I told that was okay I enjoyed her company and we could just talk.

We talked about my job, the tabloids and the pictures that I figured would pissed Sookie off and then we talked about Sookie and her part time job.  Gran said she seemed happy, but her eyes told otherwise. She knew deep down Sookie missed me but was too stubborn to admit it and talk to me.   I told Gran that was why I was there.  So many things had come up concerning Compton that I was considering calling Johan and Gustaf to come stay so I knew someone was at the house even when I wasn’t.  I knew Sookie would possibly not want me there and I was okay with that.  But when night time fell I wanted someone there with my girls.

Gran said she thought it was a good idea but for us to wait and see what Sookie said.  She might take offense to the intrusion and it might be easier for Alcide to stay the next two weeks and then maybe your friends if the trial is not over by then.

I told her I thought was a solid plan.  During our initial talk I told Gran about the new accounts I set up and that she and Jason and Pam needed to go in and see Mr. Puckett about their signatures.  I told her I felt safer with her having two nest eggs and the account for the soon to be newlyweds was a wedding present and their nest egg for living happily ever after.

Gran smiled at me and told me I was too much… I told her I never really had a big family and I am enjoying every minute of this one.

We laughed and talked for hours, it wasn’t until we noticed the clock said 4pm that she started to worry about Sookie.  She placed a call to Tara and Amelia but neither one had seen her.  She called Bud to make sure there were no accidents and then she called the H’s.  Still nothing… While she called them I called Pam, her and Jason said they would be over soon.

Needless to say we were all a bit worried.  It wasn’t only because she never went anywhere without telling Gran but with Compton out their lurking and the new information I had on Compton we were afraid for her safety. 

By six o’clock everyone was at Gran’s house including Bud.  It was just before they all got there that I went into Sookie room to see if anything was missing to give us some clues.  I really didn’t see anything out of place but I noticed an envelope on her pillow addressed to Gran.

I ran out and gave to Gran, I didn’t know what to think but I knew it couldn’t be bad but it had me worried.

Gran read it out loud so we can all hear it…

Gran

I’m sorry I left without telling you the truth but I heard you speaking with Eric yesterday afternoon and setting up a lunch date for the three of us… I couldn’t stay; I am still too upset to see him.  I know I need to but I still can’t face him.  It’s tearing me apart so much every time one of you mention him.   I love him so much but seeing him with that woman on the last RAG magazine tore me up inside and I can’t face him.   I knew he was in town once I saw that Alcide and Pam were here, they travel together so I knew I needed to get out of dodge.   Don’t worry about me; I am still in the state and I will be fine.  I am going to visit some friends and work some issues out and I need to do this alone.  I wanted Eric with me but since he is no longer mine to have I knew that wasn’t an option. I will explain more when I come back home but I needed to do this, I will be gone for about two weeks.  I will call you on Thanksgiving morning before everyone is there so that we can talk and you will know I am okay and getting along just fine.

I love you Gran and I am sure everyone is standing right there with you, so please tell them I love them too.

Sookie

I wanted to rip the letter out of Gran’s hands and read it again.  Gran’s hands were shaking and she asked us all what friends would she go to?   Tara and Amelia stated Claudine, Maria or maybe even Catherine but they had no clue who else.   We called all three and found out she had called them all and said she would be in Baton Rouge for a few days and would like to see them and had plans with Claudine for the weekend.

I looked at everyone and said I am going to Baton Rouge and leaving tomorrow morning. It was too late to start the trip now and if I had a decent night’s sleep I could get there quicker and safer then if I was to leave now. 

Alcide offered to go with me.

I thanked him and told him I would pick him up on the way in the morning.  I was going to stay with Gran because I didn’t trust Compton.

Janice said she would stay with Gran after we left and she would ask Dell to come with her.  A plan was forming and the protection of the only grandmother I had known meant the world to me.  I know it was still too early but it’s why I called Johan and asked him to see if he could get here in the next week and if he couldn’t to check with Gustaf. 

He told me he would let me know later on that day. 

As we hung up, everyone asked who I called and I let them know.  Gran was excited and said oh more grandbabies.

 I just laughed.

 I know she was trying to steer us into a light jovial gathering but because we had that ass lurking out there we couldn’t have been tenser.

Tara and Amelia asked us to explain.

Jackson was the one to tell them about what had been going on. My first encounter with Compton and then our second and then the lawsuits and then graduation and then the Dawn issue and video farce and then the bank teller and everything else we had found out including him saying that Sookie was his girlfriend. 

I stepped in and told them about my other title and what it meant.  That it meant nothing to me and I was going to tell Sookie everything after graduation but Compton ruined that too.  I never meant to hurt Sookie and by not thinking it would be an issue I did exactly that.  I knew I may never win her back but I wanted us to be at least friends where she didn’t run away every time I came into town.

Both of girls looked for confirmation from everyone else… the person who spoke up was Jason, “y’all know I wouldn’t blow smoke up your ass.  I may be simple but I am truthful.  I was with Eric the day he set up the account at the bank, he didn’t want Compton to get his grubby paws on my home nor Gran’s so he made sure our taxes are covered for like the next twenty years. But the thing is he helped get the house put into all our names with Sookie being the one ta get it after Gran passes, not that we are wishing that for her but we figured Compton would try to steal it and we were right.  That’s why the lawsuits are goin on. I stand behind whatever Eric got goin and I trust him, so y’all need ta too.”

Jason has rare moments and this was one of them but the girl’s agreed they would help however they could but it would be Sook’s decision on whether she wanted to move on or choose Eric.  If she chose to move on then they would help her find happiness.

I told them I wouldn’t expect it any other way.

 Everyone left about 10pm and Bud said he would start checking in with Gran during the day.  If we had the nights covered he would make sure the days were covered too.  I know it was a small town but I believe Bud respected and admired Gran a lot more then we knew. 

Gran let him know that if her protection stopped by about lunchtime they would be fed a proper meal. Bud let her know that he was sure he would have plenty of volunteers.

I woke up about 8am and Gran was waiting on me with a full breakfast after I took a quick shower.  I would then be off to Shreveport to pick up Alcide. 

But before I left Gran handed me a cooler with snacks and drinks so we didn’t have to stop much, just for gas…  I kissed her cheek and let her know we would call her once we got into Baton Rouge and let her know if we would be staying there or coming home that night,  I was not going to leave Baton Rouge until we found her. 

I picked up Alcide and we were off, he had printed up a list of hotels in Baton Rouge so we knew what direction we would need to go in and check them off as we went along.  We talked on and off about the lawsuit, we talked about Sookie and then we talked about his love life.  Apparently he had started talking to Maria after she graduated and they were friends for now but she wanted to be more, he told her that he needed more time to get over Angela and she said she understood.

We were about an hour out of BR (Baton Rouge) when I got an unusual phone call, if I didn’t have his name listed on caller ID I would have never picked up the phone.    

Why was Detective Coughlin calling me, this close to BR? 

 Oh shit was Sookie hurt and she called him?

 I had Alcide pick up the call since I was driving and all I heard was hello, yes, no, okay, where to, how do we get there, okay see you in an hour.

As Alcide hung up the phone he held his hand up and told me to wait a second.  He started jotting stuff down on the back of his printout.

It was killing me not to know.  It seemed like forever but it was under a minute before he spoke.

Well it appears our Sookie has been quite industrious.  She apparently has been having déjà vu moments that reminded her of when Quinn was stalking her so she called Coughlin to make arrangements to go to Angola, The Farm, otherwise known as Louisiana State Penitentiary, its 50 miles NW of BR in West Feliciana Parish, to visit Quinn.  She told Coughlin she needed answers and only Quinn held the answers, she wanted you there but since you were on the outs she asked if he would go with her.  He told her he would as long as he was able to be in the room with her while she spoke to Quinn; she told him she wouldn’t have it any other way.

We are maybe 45minutes away if we take the next exit.

Coughlin said he needs us there because Quinn is telling them some pretty scary shit and he knows Sookie is going to need you when they are done.  Whether you two are together or not she is going to need you.  He said he started to call Mr. C when he walked out of the room but figured it was better to call you.

We can call Mr. C and my dad after we find out what was up and what he said.

I really didn’t like the idea of Coughlin walking out of the room and leaving her with Quinn but I would voice that opinion when we saw him, there had to be some other reason for him to leave that room. 

There had to be.

I felt like I was possessed as we got closer to the prison, we were out in the middle of nowhere when we finally found the turn off for the prison and then we followed a dirty road, we both suspected if it rained it would be a nightmare to drive.  We finally came upon the guard house, it looked like a carport in the middle of nowhere but the guards were definitely armed and looked like they would take no prisoners.   

There was a guard standing at my window and one at Alcide’s and as I rolled the window down, we heard, “state your business.”

I told him I was Eric Northman and this was Alcide Herveaux and we were there to meet with Detective Coughlin and Sookie Stackhouse who were visiting with inmate Quinn.   He acknowledged that we were on the list and then walked to the long barriers with his fellow guard and manually lifted them out of our way so we could enter.

Remind me to NEVER end up here.  This place was scary as FUCK and we hadn’t even been in the prison yet. 

As we were driving Alcide told me about the prison and why they called it ‘The Farm’ and the ‘Alcatraz of the South, he told me of the stories that have came out of it and why no-one like being put there; that over 70% of the prisoners were lifers and only looked forward to working their days by or belonging to one of the many programs it had to offer.  Even the death row inmates had a better life than most but he still wouldn’t want to be put into this prison.

I kind of shuttered thinking Sookie came into this place to find answers; I was just hoping we got out of there in one piece.  As we drove we saw guards on horseback and rifles attached to their saddles and in their arms…  You know I never felt sorry for Quinn and his sentence but being here and seeing this first hand I felt bad for him. We parked our car and were directed to where we needed to be, at one point we were even given an escort because word got out that two actors were on the property and they wanted to make sure we were kept safe if any one recognized us.  I had good feelings about that and some bad.All I could think was please don’t riot today… Let me get Sookie out of here in one piece.   Please don’t riot today.

As we came to the room where Sookie and Coughlin were at, the guard tapped on the door.  It opened and Coughlin stepped out but the guard stepped in.  I assumed that is what happened before; at least I hope that is what happened before.

Coughlin smiled at us and told us we made good time.

He said he would update us more after we left but for now we needed to finish up with Quinn.  He had already verified with the prison authorities on some of what Quinn had stated to Sookie and him earlier and gotten copies of some paperwork and he would give that to us once we got her off this property.  He said there was a restaurant about 30 miles away and that is where we would stop and talk, but we needed to get off the property soon so we weren’t caught out here in the dark..

I guess he felt the same way I did…. Please don’t riot today…..

Coughlin tapped on the door and as the door opened Sookie turned and saw me and Alcide standing in the doorway.  She had fresh tears streaming down her face but the look of shock and love on her face was an awesome sight. 

Her hurling herself into my arms is all that mattered. 

This was right….. At least for the moment……

Quinn just stared us down but acknowledged we or I was what Sookie needed the most right now.

He earned my respect at that moment but would he keep it.

 Go BackMove forward

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14 thoughts on “Chapter 23: Bon Temps

    • OH i haven’t lost interest, I am having a hard time with it after the death of my friend and mentor EricIzMine, she was helping me with a few things on the chapter and i just haven’t been able to look at it. I will try again this week but no guarnetees. thank you for reading and enjoying the story Kristie

  1. I’m loving this story. I can not wait for more. I’m just itching to know what Quinn told Sookie and how it all relates to Compton. I wonder if they’re related somehow. Could stalking be hereditary?! You never know with these two fools.
    Happy holiday! And I hope for more soon.

    • you will be pleased with what she finds out and how it will help everyone out. I will try to get to this as soon as i can to finish it up. my goal was to take a look at it this week as a Christmas present to EIM. Happy Holidays Kristie

  2. Amazing story , Started this a few day’s ago and couldn’t stop , love the angsty moments and the tender moments too . I’ thinking that creepy Compton has been in the Bon temps house and bugged it, so he’s not having to dig to much and getting the cues from every ones conversations and One sided phone calls . Don’t know what Quinn has to do with this but I’m itching to find out , glad the Detective contacted Eric cause even with every thing that has happened Eric is still her moon .

    • i am happy you are enjoying the story, it means a lot to me that you are having the ups and downs as these two are. i will try to post soon on this story. I don’t know if you know who EricIzMine is/was, she was a mentor of sorts and was helping me sort things out on the next two chapters and when she passed i couldn’t look at the chapter we started. I have picked up paper and pen and jotted down some notes and have actually started the chapter so hopefully some time this week,but no guarantees. thanks again, my best Kristie

  3. Dear Kleannhouse,
    I can understand the dilemma of continuing on with something that is connected to the tragic passing of EIM and fully understand that revisiting this story is going to bring to back memories, both painful and pleasant . I hope that you can continue but understand that is difficult, so no pressure . Although I did not Know EIM , I am a complete fan girl of her work and I think you would be hard pushed to find anyone who follows the Eric Sookie fandom that has not heard of her , her written word and the multiverse and other stories she created . I take solace in re visiting her work , Its the only tribute I can think of , that her written words shall continue to make me laugh and cry and crave more .
    I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you.
    Lori xx

    • thanks for the warm thoughts, i was a Beta for EIM so i was closer to her work than most. But i know life goes on and i will finish this story just be patient with me. my best Kristie

  4. Discovered this wonderful story & proceeded to read the 23 chapters you have posted. Like the story, how we got to read all the potential meetings. How they didn’t realise who they were yearning after for a long time. Especially enjoyed the extended family & the work they put into the Hummingbird farmhouse for Gran (must be the first story I have read where Gran is alive as the house is modernised). Really hope you get the inspiration to continue with this enjoyable story. Thankyou.

    • thank you for reading and enjoying the story…i am glad you like the ride, yeah everyone always kills off Gran early and i thought for this story she needed to be a big part of it and join us in the full ride and downsizing of William Compton. I have been working on the chapter slowly but it is coming along nicely, i will post when i think it is ready. my best Kristie

  5. Hey there.
    I have been re-reading, and reading your comments and replies here.
    I was following this story on ff, then i got sidetracked by life, then I got sidetracked by joining the Brats page 🙂
    I can understand how finishing this would be difficult. I hasn’t joined the brats long before EIM passed, and her death hit me hard. Having been one of her brilliant Betas. And working with her I can understand that her passing would have had a much bigger impact for you.

    I still haven’t been able to go back and read any if the multiverses, so if it takes you some time to come back to this story, just know that I will be here 🙂

    Big Hugs

    Gwyn

    • Thanks Gwyn, i have a chapter going and it is a bit challenging for me to get past this point, I have a feeling I will finish it up shortly once i get past this one point…it was hard for me to work past EIM’s death and the help she gave me… it was a 2 way street for us, I was her Beta and she was my sounding board…. it is a tough thing to loose, you loose part of yourself in the meantime. anyway good things is I am writing again and my muse is jumping all over the place. so you all might get the new story i have been working on too, like EIM i have several docs opened at once and work on the one that is flowing the best …. Hugs KY

  6. Oh gosh! I wonder what Bill is up to and what did Quinn say to Sookie that me her cry so much….
    So happy that Det.Coughlin called Eric!

    • yes it was a tough conversation and even tougher to write so i am at a stand still on it. this chapter and the next are hard ones. But i will tell you Bill will get his for sure he is gonna be a losing man when Eric and his team of lawyers get a hold of him in court. Love that Sookie has support even if it was Det Coughlin. KY

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