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A Sookie/Eric/Godric fic.

Chapter Thirty-Four.

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Disclaimer: See Ch. 1.

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A/N: Attention - thanks to everyone who voted, this story won 1st Place in the Energize W.I.P. Awards!

I can't believe we're at thirty-four chapters! This is the longest fic I've written in my 3+ years on this site - it might even have a higher word-count than my novel!

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Now that I had some back-up, we headed to Jason's house first. I figured with Sam on my side, and Lafayette to talk some sense into my brother, he might be more willing to listen. If we were lucky, Tara might be there as well.

We weren't that lucky, but at least Jason let us into the house.

"I don't know what she's told the two of you, but this ain't up for discussion," Jason insisted, walking away from us into the kitchen. He grabbed a beer out of the fridge, popping the top off and chugging a couple of times.

"Jason, please just listen to us," I started.

"You stay the hell away from me. I can't even look at you right now," Jason told me.

I choked back a whimper, feeling a little piece of my heart break at his words. "Jason, I'm sorry." I wish I'd had a speech prepared, so I wouldn't just be winging it. "I didn't mean to lose control like that, but you just made me so mad. You've never treated me like that before."

My brother looked away, taking another swig of his beer.

"Jason, we know you's stubborn as a mule, but you ain't never been this stupid - and that be saying something," Lafayette chimed in.

"I don't need this from you, too, dammit," Jason replied.

"Well, you're gonna get a hell of lot more of it," Sam spoke up. "Your actions affect other people, Jason. Now, I'll admit that Bon Temps would've been better off if Bill Compton had never come here, but that don't mean you gotta go after every damn vamp in the world."

"You think this is just about Bill fucking Compton?" Jason growled, glaring at us all. "What about the vamper that attacked Tara? What about Eric Northman," Jason added, giving me a pointed look before moving his attention to Lafayette. "After what he did to you, why would you want to save his sorry-ass life?"

The slow and easy, nice-girl approach was getting us nowhere. I huffed once, making my way into the kitchen. Jason tried to move away, but I grabbed his arm. With little effort - maybe because of the vampire blood in my system, or perhaps because he didn't want to spill his beer - I spun him around to face me once more. "Jason Stackhouse, what do you think Gran would have to say about all this?"

He was silent, though his eyes were still fuming.

"What do you think she'd say if she heard what you said to me? What do you think she'd say about this ridiculous quest?"

"Well, she ain't here, Sook," Jason reminded me. "We'll never know what she'd say."

I nodded, giving him a hard look. "And who's responsible for that?"

He paused. "What?"

"Who killed Gran?"

"What the hell are you trying to get here, Sookie?"

I could feel the anger welling up in him, but I pressed on. "Tell me who killed our Gran, Jason. Tell me who took her away from us."

"It was Rene!" Jason shouted, his eyes dangerously narrowed, his hand clutching the bottle in his hand so hard that his knuckles were pale. "You know that, Sookie!"

Forcing myself to remain calm, I nodded slowly. "Exactly. It was Rene. A human being on a stupid vendetta. Not a vampire." I paused for emphasis, but not long enough to let him speak. "What about Tara's mother, Jason? She abused Tara physically, mentally, emotionally, financially - pretty much every which way there was. Was she a vampire?"

My brother was silent.

"What about my mamma, pretty boy? She's a right piece-o'-work, but she ain't no vamp," Lafayette threw in.

"My adoptive parents abandoned me when I was just a teenager," Sam added. "They sure as hell weren't vampires."

Jason was silently fuming, not meeting our eyes. Though I knew he'd probably get pissed at me for it, I pushed my way into his mind. '- got me so mixed up, I don't even know which way is up. Just like at that damn church. Is Sookie right? But how can I forget everything that these vampires have done to us? But then, we've done just as bad to them ... poor Eddie.'

We were finally getting through to him, so I pressed on. "What about Mama and Daddy, Jason? Did a vampire take them away from us? Did a vampire make that storm?" I took a breath, wetting my lips. "Bad things happen everyday, Jason. That doesn't mean that vampires are the root of all evil. ... Jason, I know you're not a bad person. I know you think you're doing right here, but this ain't right. This is not the way to get justice. I know what happened to Tara is horrible, but the vampire that did it to her is already gone. He's dead; he can't hurt her anymore. If you and Tara go ahead with this quest, you're just gonna get yourselves - and a lot of innocent people - killed. Do you want that?"

Jason growled out a long breath, slamming his bottle down on the counter. "'Course I don't want that, Sook!" He shook his head, glaring at the half-empty bottle. "Dammit."

I slowly reached my hand up to his arm, gripping the muscle softly. "Jason, you know what the right thing to do here is," I urged him. "I know you don't want Tara to get herself hurt. Take us to her. Help us stop this before it's too late."

Jason was silent for a long moment. I glanced at Sam and Lafayette, wondering what else we'd have to say to convince him. I opened my mouth, not exactly knowing what I was going to say. Jason spoke first, "Sookie, you're my sister ... despite everything that happened yesterday, I do love you. I get what you're saying, I do ... but I can't do that to Tara. She's hurtin' real bad, and she wants them to pay. Even if I could talk her out of it ..." Jason trailed off, running a hand through his hair. "I'm sorry, but I just can't."

"Jason, please," I begged.

"Look, she ain't gonna listen to me, anyhow," Jason argued.

"Then just tell us where she at," Lafayette demanded. "You owe us that much."

Jason hesitated, pursing his lips. I was about ready to smack the answer out of him, when he finally nodded. "She's been going to some witchy kinda thing with Holly from work," Jason supplied, glancing at Sam. "It's down in Shreveport."

My heart did a little nervous flutter at the mention of Eric's current hometown.

"Moon Goddess Emporium?" Lafayette wondered.

Jason nodded. "Yeah."

I glanced between the two. "Moon what?"

"She been trying to get me to go there with her. I told her I wasn't down for none o' that cult bullshit, and she shouldn't be either." Lafayette glanced between me and Jason. "It's as good a place as any to start."

"Well then, let's get going," Sam spoke.

"I'm right behind you, Merlotte," Lafayette agreed.

I hesitated, not wanting to leave just yet. "I'll meet you guys outside," I told them, letting them know I wanted a minute alone with Jason.

They left without question, Sam pausing at the door to make sure I'd be okay. I nodded, waiting until he closed the door to face Jason again. "Jason, I really am sorry. I never meant to ... zap you. I lost control. I'm sorry if I hurt you."

Jason shrugged. "The only thing you really hurt was my pride."

I frowned, not knowing what he meant.

He sighed, leaning his forearms against the counter, looking down at his hands so that he didn't have to meet my eyes. "You've always been the 'special' one, Sook. Ever since we were kids. Sure, some people thought you were weird ... even our own parents. I never did, though. I've always ... well, to tell you the truth, I've been jealous of you for a long time."

"Jealous?" The idea seemed ridiculous to me. Jason had had an amazing life compared to mine. Loved by all his peers - especially the ladies; what he lacked in school smarts he made up in charisma; beloved quarterback ... he'd only ever had to do the bare minimum to get by in his life. "Jason, what have you ever had to be jealous of? My whole life, people have called me Crazy Sookie. I've been a freak in everyone's eyes. And now I find out I'm a fairy? How is that anything to be jealous of?"

"You don't see it, do you, Sook? Being able to read people's minds? Knowing what they're thinking all the time? Shooting light out of your hands? That's powerful ... that's special. I've never had that, and I never will. ... How come you got all the special?"

It broke my heart to hear him say that, even though I'd been wondering myself why I got all the fairy "gifts", and he got none. "Jason Stackhouse, I don't want to ever hear you talking like that. You are just as special as I am, maybe even more so. You've always protected me, and you're about the strongest person ... well, human that I know." I felt bad for making the distinction, but was surprised that it at least got a chuckle out of him. Carrying on, I added, "You are fiercely loyal, Jason. Sure, you get led astray more often than I'd like, but you're heart's usually in the right place. ... If reading people's minds, and shooting light out of my hands makes me special, then I don't want it. I'd trade places with you in a heartbeat, if I could."

Jason shook his head. "Nah ... knowing me, I'd probably use it to win the lottery, or something like that."

I wasn't quite sure how he could use my gifts to win the lottery, but I smiled along with him. "I'm sure you'd do just fine." Glancing at the clock on the wall, I saw that it was just about noon. "Jason, I wish I could stay here and talk with you some more, but I gotta go. Are you gonna be okay?" I only had about six hours before Eric and Godric woke up, and started to wonder where I was.

"I'll be fine, Sook," Jason told me. "You don't have to baby-sit me."

It was pure coincidence that my phone happened to ring at that moment. "Hello?"

"Sookie, it's Hoyt. You left a message on my machine?"

I nodded, sighing in relief. "Yes. Look, I can't really get into it now, but could you come over to Jason's?"

There was a pause on the line. "Is he still spewing that nonsense about killing all vampires? 'Cause me and Jess are -"

"It's a long story, but no," I told Hoyt. "Things are pretty much worked out, but I think he could use a friend right now. Could you come over?"

"... Yeah, I'll be there in a few minutes," Hoyt answered.

"Great. Thanks, Hoyt." I hung up the phone, looking at Jason again.

He looked sufficiently shamed. "You didn't have to do that, Sook. I'm fine."

"I know," I placated him, getting a little antsy with every moment that was passing. "I just figured it would help you guys to talk things through."

Jason nodded slowly, rubbing his hands on the counter. "Did he sound mad?"

I shrugged. "Maybe a little, but can you blame him? His girlfriend is, well ... a vampire. ... Did you think about Jessica when you and Tara started all this?"

Jason sighed, pushing away from the counter. "I don't know, Sookie. I figured I'd cross that bridge when I came to it."

"Well, I'd say you're at the bridge, Jason."

"I know."

I hoped Hoyt would get there soon. I didn't want to leave Jason before he got there, but I also didn't want to spend the whole day at my brother's house. With any luck, I'd be able to talk Tara down before Eric and Godric woke up, and then they'd never have to know about any of it ... I'd never have to lie to them about it, if they never knew about it. It was shoddy logic, I knew, but it was all I had. "Jason, for what it's worth, Hoyt's been your best friend for years. Sure, he'll be mad at first, but I know you two'll work things out."

"I hope so, Sookie."

We waited in silence for a few minutes, until we heard the sound of Hoyt's truck pulling up to the house. I gave Jason a hug, letting him know that everything would work itself out in the end. I walked out before Hoyt came in, not wanting to get caught up in the resounding drama that would follow from their heart-to-heart. I did ask Hoyt to be gentle with him, seeing and 'hearing' how hurt he was about the whole thing.

With Jason's side of the ordeal dealt with - for now, at least - Sam and I got back in his truck, with Lafayette following behind us in his car. I only hoped that things would run as smoothly with Tara.

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End of chapter 34.

I know, this chapter is unforgivably short. My only defense is that I've had this much of the chapter written for months, and just didn't have time to continue it - going from part-time school to working 4 jobs can have that effect.

I double-dog promise that I will do my best to update in a timely fashion from now on. I have two days off coming up, and then a week later the library's closed for a week, so I will HOPEFULLY have time to focus on my writing. Sorry again for the horrible wait.

Reviews are appreciated, flame if you must, but constructive criticism is much more useful.

Until next time ...! (which WON'T be another six months!)