A/N: Here we are, at the end of our journey. My family life has changed dramatically during the writing of this story and you have all been so supportive and have stuck by me through many delays. Thank you. Your support has meant a lot. You haven't seen the last of me : )
My Betas, IWishIHadARiver and Northman Maille are a huge part of my creative process. An editor is a writer's best friend and I have learned so much from both of them. They have devoted a great deal of their personal time to this story and I can't thank them enough. Thank you, Northman Maille, for helping me bring this home. The final few chapters were tough and you gave me the spark I needed. xo Cagey
Without further ado…
(I don't own any of these wonderful characters.)
"And now I'm going to have to go with Pervert Viking Vampire," said Allen. "Pervert I have a least a chance of spinning, Psychopathic Brotherfucker I don't. Oh yeah, and here comes another 'I don't'…Bill I have to live with; you I don't." He flicked his finger dismissively at Lorena. "Pack your bags, nut job."
Lorena shrieked like a Banshee. It was impressive in its range. "You can't just throw me off the show!"
"Hmm. No. You're right. I have to kill you and then throw you off," replied Allen, now cool like a cucumber instead of purple like an eggplant.
"William! Tell me this can't be true," Lorena whined in panic. She grasped at Bill like a child about to be separated from its mother.
Her frantic gaze flitted from face to face, meeting nothing but indifference.
"No!" she screamed. "You can't kill me off, I'm…I'm…"
"A secondary character," said Sookie helpfully. "Besides, you get killed off in the books at this point anyway, so really, it makes sense," she finished.
I couldn't help but think she was comforting Lorena, in her own way. Sookie's inherent goodness took hold in the oddest of situations. It was uniquely her, and part of why I loved her with something bordering on idolatry.
"Yeah, the books," emphasized Allen. "The books are my bible. The bible says you go. Even Copley can't do anything about that. It's in the Bible, baby. Read it and weep."
Yeah right. I seriously doubted he had ever read them.
"William! Do something!" Lorena pleaded.
I could only imagine that the puzzle pieces of his life were snapping into place creating a sickeningly clear picture, but while you could see the wheels turning furiously, he didn't utter a word and whatever his true reaction, it wasn't evident.
Sookie's face you could read like a book, and I took it all in. It was a look of sweet relief mixed with a heady dose of vindication that I'm sure matched mine exactly.
I cupped her face in my hands, stroking her cheeks with my thumbs. "How do you feel about marrying a pervert, Lover?"
"I've never felt better," she giggled.
"Can we weather the media storm?" I asked. It was a lot to ask.
"After all of this? Absolutely. Bring it on. If that picture ever comes out I'll be the envy of every girl in town. It was worth going through everything we have just to see Lorena get her comeuppance."
"Her what?" I asked. My ESL was failing me.
"Uh, what's coming to her…her just deserts," she explained.
"Just desserts? That sounds positive. I'd think she doesn't deserve dessert," I answered.
"No, no," she said, in mock exasperation. "Deserts, as in 'what she deserves'…which is different from deserts, where cacti grow."
"Don't you mean 'cactuses'?" I asked.
"You, my hunky Swedish boyfriend, need my Word of the Day Calendar and maybe even an English lesson. I'd be happy to teach you."
"Mmm," I said, trailing my hand down her back and giving her bottom a discreet squeeze. "Will you put your hair up and wear glasses…and a skirt?"
"OK, pervert. Hands off," said Allen. "PR will be here any minute."
"Brother and sister! But how did you know?" squeaked Sookie. It was a happy squeak.
"Well, half-brother and sister actually, but who is counting," said Amelia. "When the samples came back, we checked my DNA first and I'm definitely not related to Lorena in the slightest. She's definitely not a Carmichael. Thank fuck."
"How did you work out this bombshell?" I said, feeling both fascinated and repelled.
"Well, I was tempted to just stop there, but the desire to fuck with Lorena's life was just too great, so we looked at all the samples," said Amelia. "Turns out, the glass Yvetta drank from contained the DNA from two men, one of whom was Lorena's father."
A very animated Bob continued, "And then, Amelia asked me how that was possible and I remembered that Yvetta made Mr. Compter try her drink. I'd mixed her a Russian Sex Bomb. He was happy to try it."
"Well, then we can't be sure," I cautioned. "Who else could have gotten their DNA on Yvetta's glass?"
Bob coughed. "There were no other men on the island other than Bill, and he's too young to be her father. The only other possible DNA in Yvetta's mouth was mine."
Sookie's eyebrows lifted up into her hairline. "Oh, like…? Ew. Sorry, but, ew."
"That's not what she said," waggled Bob, earning himself a smack in the arm from Amelia.
"Wow. Bill led me to believe that his Dad was so old-fashioned," Sookie mused aloud. "Hey, he must have known about Lorena though. Yvetta must have been blackmailing him too, if they've spent every summer there since Lorena was born. So, how did he not freak out about Bill and Lorena being a couple?"
"They hid it really well," said Bob. "It was so obvious to me, but I think they had the rest of them fooled. They spent almost the whole summer sailing. Mr. Compter would always mutter about Bill spending time with her, saying he thought she was too low for his company and that he better not lay a finger on her if he valued his inheritance. Bill was always quick to wrinkle his nose, blame his father for the company he was forced to keep, and boast that he'd never marry anything less than a movie star. He's ambitious to a fault. He's pure ego. But he has the genuine hots for her, man. Or he did. Now she's just the world's biggest roadblock to his long-term career goals."
"Just, ew," said Sookie.
We all nodded in agreement.
She was once again covered in gore, but this time, her mood was decidedly upbeat.
I was able to admire her openly from offstage, so different from the day that Longshadow had exploded on her. This time, there were no more unspoken words. This time, when I followed her to the craft services table it was to give her a congratulatory kiss, and we didn't care who saw it.
"How many times did you have to film the scene where you were about to stake Lorena?" I asked, laughing.
"Oh, my God. So many times! She was out of control. She kept changing the blocking and attacking me. It was more like high school wrestling. I swear she wanted to do as much damage to me as possible before she got fired. It's a good thing you and I have been doing so much wrestling," she said, biting her lip and leaning in close.
"No, no, don't touch! You're all…goopy. Sorry, but that stuff is awful – and obvious. I'm all for staking my claim, but I think I've done that adequately, don't you think? Or do we need more canoodling photo ops?"
"Ooh, 'canoodling photo ops,' great use of North American lingo, hunky foreigner. My English lessons are paying off," she teased, coming closer.
I playfully stepped back again, but growled, "Paying off is right. Next I'd like you to invest in one of those pointers, or maybe a ruler. I think I might start making some mistakes."
"You are so bad," she whispered, and before I could dodge her, she wrapped her goopy self around me and slid a slick hand up into my hair, pulling my face down to hers for an urgent kiss.
"Broom closet?" I panted.
"Unf," she replied. Which meant yes. Basically, for Sookie, any sound other than no, meant yes, and she never said no. Neither did I.
We slammed the supply closet door and I stalked her as she backed away.
"So...that famous picture…are you sure you weren't getting yourself off to my sex scene with Bill?" she teased.
I growled. "I was imagining myself with you, but I'd never get off on watching you with another man. I wanted to kill him."
"Because I want you to," she breathed.
I stopped dead. "Kill him?" I asked, confused. I was pretty sure she didn't mean it.
"No. Get yourself off. Now," she instructed.
"Yes, ma'am," I said in a low tone. I fixed her with my best Eric Fucking Northgard panty-dropping stare and slowly inched my zipper down. It was hard, because I was. There wasn't a lot of give in these pants.
Even after all these months, Sookie still hadn't gotten over the novelty of my penchant for not wearing briefs. She moaned.
"That's it, Lover. Take a good long look," I taunted.
"It has to be a long look," said sex kitten Sookie.
"How do you want me to touch myself?" I asked.
As if on cue, she started to blush. Fucking brilliant. Step One was complete.
She chewed her lip a little.
"Like this?" I asked, laying my heft in my hand and sliding my palm down to the base, giving myself a squeeze.
"Gah," she garbled, squirming a little on the shelf she was perched on.
I stalled. Step Two would occur at any moment.
Sookie's eyes were glued to my cock.
"What next, Sookie. Tell me what you want to see," I prodded.
"Come here," she panted.
In one stride I was in her hot little hands, and her legs were wrapping around me. Step Two, check.
She needed prodding again, but of a different variety.
"Wardrobe?" I asked.
"No," she gasped, as I ripped her thong off her body and entered her in a single thrust. Step Three, make her scream. It wouldn't take long. It never did. We'd been playing this game for weeks.
"Ready for the walk of shame, Lover?" I teased as I went to open the broom closet door.
"Are you kidding? I love that everyone in the building can see you're mine. Unlike Bill and Lorena, we have nothing to hide," she said.
As we walked back through the set, everyone stood back to watch us pass. Since I was now completely covered in fake blood, our recent activity was blatantly obvious. Our friends were nodding and smiling and winking.
"I'm so proud that you're mine," I said.
She craned her neck up to lay a kiss on me and the production crew burst into catcalls and applause.
I drew Sookie in closer against my side, our blood-soaked shirts sticking together.
"Damn this stuff, huh? The worst," I said in a cool offhanded way to Alcide, motioning at my shirt. Sookie didn't see the wink.
The news of our relationship had come out and caused the expected sensation, but, lucky for us, the combined efforts of the Carmichaels and the Compters had kept Lorena cowed. She didn't dare release my photo or we would report their bigger scandal. Amelia had delighted in delivering that news. Her father was so relieved to have Lorena on a leash, he and Amelia were able to look past their differences and start fresh. We heard that Bob was regularly drinking Scotch with Ames' old man now.
We arrived home later than Bill to the now commonplace noise of his daily session with one of Los Angeles' many prostitutes. It was often an indoor/outdoor event, but we decided to brave the noise and catch a few final rays of the sun on the back patio.
"Oh, William," an unmistakable female voice mewled.
"Can't ever get enough of you, Lorena," Bill groaned back, the slap of flesh echoing against the house.
Our jaws dropped.
This moment was far too perfect to waste. "Time for my very own paparazzi moment," I said, launching off the chaise and sprinting as silently as possible towards the fence. I lifted my phone up and took a picture, checked it to make sure it was a good one, and winked at Sookie. "Insurance. Fucking platinum-level insurance."
"We need to move," said Sookie, her face screwed up tight, "or he needs to rent another place. And I need to rescue his dog from a dysfunctional home. At the very least we need a vacation. Don't show me that photo. My ears alone will take years to recover. That is just…ew."
"Does your Word of the Day Calendar have any synonyms for 'ew,' because you seem to use it a lot?"
She gave me a playful jab.
"Well, how does Stockholm for Christmas sound?" I said, wrapping her up in my arms and giving her temple a gentle kiss.
"How does a small, private wedding in Stockholm for Christmas sound?" she replied, admiring her engagement ring.
I kissed my answer into her lips.