A/N - AU/OOC a Fan Fiction based on the True Blood Series. True Blood and SVM characters belong to Mrs. Harris, Alan Ball and HBO. Original Characters and story line are mine. So with that out of the way... While working on the latest chapter for The Ties that Bind me, this story started to coalesce in my head and TB Eric wouldn't stop badgering me. I like True Blood Eric, but dislike Sookie and I am not thrilled with all of the other character storylines in season 3. So I am going to kinda do my own thing here. Which is why it is labeled AU and OOC. I am rating it M for potential violence and future lemons. I will update as I can, but TTTBM has priority. I just needed to crank this chapter out to get Eric to shut up. It is a one shot for now while I finish up the plot.

It is the end of Season 3 of True Blood, after Eric had revealed Bill's deception, Sookie throws both of them out of her home and runs to the cemetery. There Claudine convinces her to follow her through the portal to the Fairy Realm. All is not fluffy kittens and puppy dog tails and a changed Sookie returns through the portal to Bon Temps.

Chapter 1

Scene 1 - SPOV - Homecoming

I stumbled as I came through the portal from the realm of Fairy. I found myself standing once again at the foot of my Grandmother's grave, a different woman. This time it was not grief which consumed me but resolve. I was my own woman, not a child. I regretted some of my actions towards my friends and family, the way I would speak and my childish attitude. I would apologize to those I needed to, and I would continue to grow and learn how to be a better person. But first, I wanted to get back home and collapse for some much needed sleep.

It was mid afternoon, on what day I was not sure. I had stepped from this world four months ago by my reckoning, but Claudine had warned me time moved to a different rhythm between the two realms, I may have left only hours ago. I thought about all I had discovered while in the land of sunshine. I had a Great-Grandfather I had never heard about, and other relatives. But where I had sought comfort and a place of belonging, instead I found yet another supernatural determined to use me, this time as a brood mare for the fairies. I refused, adamantly and in return I had been restrained, again.

I had a friend in Claudine though, someone willing to get me out. She understood how I felt, having been forced to accept someone not of her choosing as husband. She had only brought me to Niall to give me the option to join the Fae after all the pain I had suffered here. My decision made to go home; she helped me from my locked room and brought me to the portal. She warned me that others may come, to try to convince me to return to my Great-Grandfather, but my association with vampires would make them wary. She encouraged me to continue it, to seek out Eric and ask for his protection.

She was right in a way, now that I was no longer Bill's I was free to be claimed by any vampire that wanted me, according to vampire law. So the practical thing to do would be to approach the one vampire whom I might be able to trust. It was difficult to admit, but I did trust Eric. I was very vulnerable right now; to leave the land of the fairy I had to agree to the suppressing of my Fae gifts. While they were still new to me, I had found them a helpful if unreliable bag of tricks to get me out of tight situations, now I could not use them. It felt ironic to think to myself that all I had now was my telepathy. Without the possibility of me accidently glowing like a neon sign, the chance of a random Fae locating me was slim.

I was approaching my home while reminiscing and it dawned on me something had changed. Perhaps it was just the way the sun was falling across the siding, but it sure looked like it was freshly painted. I walked up the steps and noticed other changes, a broken rail replaced, and a new porch light. The screen door had new hardware and no longer squeaked when I opened it. I found the spare key under the flower pot and held the screen open with my hip as I unlocked the front door. The inside of the house danced with rays of sunlight across freshly sanded and polished wood floors. I dropped the key onto a side table and roamed around the house, my jaw hanging open. The place was spic and span from top to bottom, including new drywall, paint and wall paper. The furniture had been cleaned, and replaced as needed, but still in the same style. A couple new area rugs decorated the floor, even the one where Eric had killed the were-wolf.

I made it to the kitchen to discover new appliances and cabinets. I explored the rest of the house to find more of the same, rooms cleaned; floors scrubbed or replaced, and new paint and furniture. The bathrooms were fantastic; no expense had been spared here, with a custom shower and a huge tub for the master, and a smaller but no less decadent set up for the guest rooms. All of my family heirlooms and knick knacks were just as I had left them, except for the lack of dust. I found a box shoved in a corner in the spare bedroom which held all the broken things I may have cherished, like the picture of my Gran with Tara and me.

I found a note in the middle of my bed alongside a strange looking remote control. I picked up the remote first; it had a set of buttons labeled, Kitchen, Living Room, Front Entrance, Back Entrance, Master Bedroom, Bedroom one, Bedroom two, First Floor, Second Floor and Complete House, along with some other things that made even less sense.

I dropped the remote back onto the bed and picked up the note, written on a thick card stock and folded. I opened it and read the elegant script.

Because it was needed.

Welcome home,


I blinked, and then re read the note. I could not believe it; Eric had done all of this, for me? I picked up the remote again, and out of curiosity I pressed the button which said Master Bedroom. I jumped at the faint sound of hydraulics and dropped the remote again as I placed my hands over my mouth in surprise. The room was plunged into darkness when the sunlight streaming through the window was cut off by the clang of steel sliding into place. That sneaky vampire, I couldn't believe he had done it. I pressed the button again, and the shutters slid away, allowing the room to be flooded with light.

I tried out the whole house, room by room and found more of the same. I discovered extra doors hidden in walls which would turn certain portions of the house into light locks. Places where you could close one door and open another without chancing a beam of sunlight where it was not wanted. The high-handed vampire had not only refurbished my home to pre Maryanne splendor, he had made my house vampire friendly.

I was so busy exploring, I almost missed the audience which was gathering outside. It was an extra strong pulse of rage from a snarly brain that caught my attention. Startled, I threw out a mental web to locate intruders and found a dozen were-wolves gathered around the house. Stupid me, I should have realized the house was being watched. After all when I left this realm, Russell's pack was still looking for me.

Just as the wolves started to head for the house it dawned on me that the steel shutters and doors had a more versatile use than just blocking the sun. I grabbed the remote and pushed the button for 'Complete House', praying the steel would be in place before the wolves came through. I could feel the house shake when they hit the steel barriers just as they closed. There was a lot of whining and scraping at the doors and windows. I even heard someone scrambling across the roof.

I went and found my Gran's shotgun, checking that it was loaded. I even found a pistol and rifle in the same closet, both loaded with silver. Eric was nothing if not thorough, so I was confident that the buckshot was also silver. I made myself comfortable in a chair facing the front door and waited. Every fifteen minutes I would throw out my mental net to see if the number of my visitors had changed. The clock on the mantle ticked off the hours, and slowly the wolves melted away. When it felt like the sun had set, I could only 'hear' four snarly brains, but I also picked up two voids closing fast upon the property.

I was surprised at the range of my ability; normally I wouldn't pick up anything at all until someone was at the edge of my woods. I felt like I could reach for a mile, which might not be such a good thing, unless my shields had grown in strength too.

The vampires hit the edge of my property according to my mental radar at the same time I heard snarls and then a yelp. In my head I watched one, two and then a third snarly brain blink out. The fourth was still there, but wavering in and out, indicating they were alive but probably unconscious. One of the voids stayed with the injured wolf, while the second one approached the house.

I opened my eyes and watched the front door, shotgun at the ready patiently waiting.

"Sookie," rumbled a familiar voice.

A silly grin spread over my face, I was already imagining the glint I would find in his eyes. I used the remote to lower the barriers around the front of the house, shotgun in hand I glided to the front door and opened it.

"Hello Eric, come on in," I smiled at the consternation that crossed his face, before turning from the doorway with a beckoning motion. I heard the screen door close behind me. I walked back to my chair and sat down, leaning the shotgun next to it after I had checked the safety. When I looked up, Eric was standing in front of me looking down with a frown between his eyebrows.

His hair was a bit shorter, I wondered if Pam had to cut it to get rid of the cement. But then again I still was not sure how much time had passed.

"Have a seat Eric," I waved a hand over to the couch next to me, it was sturdy and deep enough that he could get comfortable.

We just sat in silence, our eyes taking each other in.

I broke it first, "How long."

"A week," he said, and then asked, "How many?"

"A dozen, since about mid day."

There was silence again until he leaned toward me and took a long deep breath, "You smell different, sweeter but with a different ... base note."

I answered him in a roundabout way, "It has been four months for me, and some things have changed."


It was a typical Eric command, blunt and uncompromising.

"I did not like the plans they had for me. They had started to mold me into what they wanted without my consent. When I figured out what was going on, I asked a friend for help. She got me out, but I had to make a sacrifice," I explained, watching his expression.

"So they will be searching for you."


He changed the subject, "You have forgiven me?" He gestured to himself and the room at large, after all the last time we had seen each other I had screamed at him to get the hell away from me. He probably came here expecting me to throw him off the porch, even though I never rescinded his invitation.

"You were right, I needed to know."

He flashed across the space between us to kneel at my feet, his hands on either side of the back of my chair, boxing me in. Before I could object his nose was buried in my hair, and then his face was rubbing over my cheek and down my neck, scenting me. I could feel his lips open at the junction of my shoulder, his tongue flicking out once with just a hint of fang. I did not make a sound, just patiently waited for him to finish his taste test.

His eyes were slightly glazed when he sat back on his heels, his long arms still caging me in. He shook his head once, and then looked at me intently.

"You taste the same and you feel the same," He pressed a hand to his chest, indicating the blood we had shared, "You are Sookie, but you do not act like Sookie."

So that is what was bothering him, "Like I said Eric, some things have changed. Part of that change is accepting the help of my friends, especially when it is meant to keep me safe."

He sat back on the couch, lounging there like it was his throne at Fangtasia, his mouth curled up in a smirk.

"A week ago you hated the sight of me. You wanted me out of your life, but now we are friends?"

I really did not want to get into this with an injured wolf and another vampire in my back yard.

"Who's in the back yard? What are you going to do with the wolf?"

"Pam, and we will question him."

"Is he Russell's?"

"He has the brand."

I thought long and hard for a moment and made a decision. I needed Eric, without his protection I was a sitting duck. I could keep putting this off, or I could just get on with it and find out if he would be agreeable.

"I will make a deal with you Eric. If you get the wolf out of here right now, and come back later tonight when you and Pam are done with your fun, I will answer all of your questions."

"Why not answer them now?"

"Just get the wolf out of here Eric, please."

He stood up and I had to crane my head back to see his expression, it was thoughtful.

"Pam can handle him, she will enjoy the playtime alone. Do not move, I will be back shortly," he zipped out of the house.

I needed all my wits about me for this conversation, but I was so tired. I hoped I could stay awake long enough to get through everything.

I heard the screen door close again, and a wind brushed by my face. I blinked and Eric was back to his position on the couch. He patted his thigh and lifted his eyebrow in invitation.

"Forget it Eric, just ask your questions."

"What did they want from you?"

"A brood mare."

"What did they do to you?"

"Slipped something into the food and drinks to increase my Fae essence."

"For what reason?"

"So that my future husband would be more receptive to a fairy hybrid and to make it difficult for me to come back here."

"What happened?"

"I threw a hissy fit, broke my intendeds nose, and was punished for being so ungrateful," I shrugged my shoulders.

He laughed when I said I broke the guy's nose, but his eyes narrowed when I mentioned punishment.

"How did they punish you?"

I shifted in the chair, uncomfortable with this line of questioning, "Threw me in a cell for four months." I hoped he would not push any further, but of course he did.

"What else Sookie."

"I don't want to talk about it Eric."

"You said you would answer all of my questions," he said reasonably. He was right, I did, just not this one.

I leaned my head back and closed my eyes. I could feel the tears building behind my lids. I did what I swore I would never do again, to anyone. I begged him.

"Please Eric; just leave it alone, please."

I was praying for all I was worth that he would back off.

"Who helped you get out?"

Thank you God, "Claudine," I replied.

"What was the sacrifice?"

"To get through the portal I had to give up my essential spark."

"They took your magic?"

"Claudine couldn't exactly take it, but she did suppress it. I won't ever be able to use it, but in return it cannot be used to identify me."

"So the portal let you through because it did not recognize who you were, and I will not ever get to see you blast someone across a parking lot again?"

"Yes, and I forgot you saw what I did to Russell."

"I thought I had been hallucinating."


I yawned and he swung me up out of my chair and into my bedroom, where he set me back down gently.

"Go get ready for bed, I know you are tired. We can talk more later."

A shower sounded wonderful, but I did not want to leave this for another night. Perhaps a cold shower would wake me up. I pulled out a pair of flannel pajama bottoms and a tank top out of my dresser and headed for the bathroom. "I agree a shower sounds great, but I really want to finish this question session tonight." I said over my shoulder before I closed the bathroom door. I expected him to try and follow me in, but surprisingly he did not. Maybe I was not the only one who had changed.

Or not, I thought, when I found him shirtless and shoeless lounging on my bed. He patted the space next to him.

"Eric..." I warned.

"My shoes and shirt had blood on it; I did not want to ruin your bedding. You want to finish our talk and I want to be comfortable. Come now, I will behave, at least for now." His gaze was a challenge.

While I was acutely conscious of my braless state, the old Sookie would have thrown a temper tantrum and tossed him out of her bed and her room. But I was the new Sookie, so I took a deep breath, watched his eyes flash to my chest and climbed in next to him to sit with my legs crossed Indian style my back to his feet.

"Still full of surprises Sookie," he smiled, and then rolled over to his side and rested his head on the palm of one hand, the other began to trace circles on the bed spread in front of my toes.

"So what do you think of the house?" he asked, when I did not respond.

"It is beautiful, though I was pissed at you for the shutters. That was high-handed of you."

"Was? What changed your mind?"

"The wolves, it does a great job keeping them out."

"Indeed," he agreed, "I was thinking about my own comfort though when I had them installed." He was smirking up at me, his fingers now tracing patterns on my nearest knee. I tried to repress the shiver at his touch. "I knew you would not stay angry at me for long."

I sighed, "Eric about that ..."

"Yes?" His fingers had moved to include my lower thigh in their activities. He watched me with a smug smile.

I looked down at the bed spread and started to draw figure eights with my own fingers. "I really do consider you a friend. Even with all the crap you have pulled, you have been there to help when I needed."

"I have not fucked you yet. You would not enjoy it if you were damaged," he smirked at me.

"Whatever Eric," I waved my hand in dismissal. "You really are a jerk, you know that? What I am trying to say is ... Thank you, for everything." I lifted and locked my eyes with his, hoping he could read my sincerity.

He stopped playing with my knee, pulling his hand back to rest it on the bed.

I decided it was now or never, "Eric, do you still want to claim me?"

He snapped to a seated position, curling one leg under and bracing with one hand, the other hand had grabbed my chin. I could not tear my eyes away if I wanted to.

"You would give yourself to me," he demanded, "Why?"

"Well if I am no longer Bill's," my voice hitched for a moment, it may have been four months ago in my time, but it still hurt. "Then as far as vampires are concerned it's open season for Sookie, right? If I have to belong to a vampire, then I want a choice. So my choice is you, I trust you." I held my breath waiting for his response.

He dropped my chin, stood, and began to pace the short length of my room. He was muttering in a language I could not understand. I shifted my position so I could watch him, my back now to the headboard of my bed. I had to drag in a deep breath, he was taking so long to respond, and it was making me nervous.

He stopped pacing and turned to me, I could see the determination cross his face. With vampire speed he slid in behind me, wrapping an arm around my waist and hauling me back against his chest. I squealed in surprise.

I heard a crunching sound and then his bleeding wrist was pushed against my lips.

"Drink," he ordered.


"You will take my blood or I will get up and leave, this was your choice."

He was right, I did choose this. I took his wrist in both my hands and wrapped my lips around the wound. I swallowed two mouthfuls of his blood before the wound began to close. He pulled his wrist away and I heard him reopen the punctures. He thrust his wrist back against my mouth.

"You need to take more," his voice was hoarse and I felt him shudder behind me when I resumed feeding. His blood was thick and sweet, I was starting to get turned on by the sounds his was making. He nuzzled my hair out of the way, the only warning a flick of his tongue before he bit, his fangs sinking into my shoulder. The feel of my blood being drawn into his mouth was unbelievable; it was enough to push me to climax. I dropped his wrist and called out his name, grabbing onto his thighs to brace myself. He released my shoulder and sealed the punctures with his tongue, then bit a finger and rubbed a bit of blood so there would be no scars.

I could feel that he was still hard behind me and I was resigned to the fact that he would now expect sex. He surprised me again though, he just cradled me to his chest until I could feel his body soften and relax. Well as soft as Eric could ever be, the man was always ready, willing and able.

He brushed a kiss against my vulnerable neck and I could feel him smile when he whispered, "Mine."

He lifted me up off of him and slid from the bed, then returned to pick me up and pull back the covers. He tucked them back around me then stood at the foot of the bed, pulling on his shirt and shoes. When he was dressed he looked down at me and answered the question I could not ask.

"I have claimed you, but I will not have sex with you. I wish you to yield to me because of your own desire, not because of necessity or fear."

His cell phone rang before I could frame my response. I recognized the ring tone as the one he used for Pam. He answered it in that language I could not understand.

He frowned when he was finished.

"I must go, there is trouble at Fangtasia. You need sleep. I will be back tomorrow night. Stay in the house and let no one inside. There is food stocked in the kitchen. Do not let anyone else know that you have returned."

He waited for me to argue. I kept my mouth shut.

His smile was approving, "Until tomorrow then, good night Sookie."

"Good Night Eric."

In a vampire flash he was gone. I waited a few moments then crawled out of bed and made my way back to the chair I had been sitting on earlier. I picked up the shot gun and the remote, checked all the doors to make sure they were locked, and closed the shutters. I left a small table lamp on in the front room then made my way back up the stairs to my bedroom. I placed the gun where it was within easy reach, set my alarm for eleven a.m., turned out the light and crawled back under my covers.

I thought about all that had happened this day. I remembered my fear that the portal would not let me through and the relief when I found myself in the cemetery. I remembered the surprise at the changes to my home, and the fear returning when the were-wolves appeared. I remembered the secret thrill of seeing Eric again, and his constant questions. I remembered his taste. But most of all I remembered I was safe, and the reason why.

"Mine," I whispered, closing my eyes and letting sleep claim me.