Chapter 73 – Introducing

Chapter 73 – Introducing

June 16, 2005

“You’re finally awake!  Hello my baby girl.  Are you ready for your first big television appearance?”  Moyra, now three months old, flailed her arms and legs at her daddy and smiled.  “I’ll take that as a yes.”  He leaned over and picked her up from the co-sleeper and kissed her slobbery face over and over again while she latched onto his hair.  “But you have to stop moving those arms and legs so I can get your dress and tights on.”  The more he talked, the more she moved.  He placed her on the changing area he’d set up and started to get her ready.  At least the dress he selected only had two buttons in the back.  The snaps on her bodysuits were frustrating.  “Mommy jokes you need a degree in snapology to work the snaps on your bodysuits and she doesn’t have large fingers like Daddy has adding to the difficulty.”  Moyra just gurgled her understanding.  After changing her diaper he quickly put her in a soft pink dress and now he just had the tights to get on her.  He cursed himself for picking out tights but he couldn’t resist the ruffles on the tush.  He must have pinched his face in frustration while he was trying to bunch one of the stocking legs up to get it on because Moyra started laughing at him – she always laughed when he was most frustrated.  “Ok Moyra, help Daddy out here, we need to get these on before Mommy is done with Hunter.  I know we can beat them since Hunter needs to wear a tie.”  He struggled to hold a foot and started.  Moyra just laughed again as he grimaced out of frustration.  “That’s right, laugh at Daddy.  King of Louisiana, Council Member, 1000 year old Vampire and you baby girl – you just laugh at me.”  She just smiled more followed by what looked like a cup of drool starting to come out of her mouth.  “Oh no, no drool on the dress yet.”  He was prepared for her almost constant drool and grabbed a cloth to wipe her face then abandoned the tights to get a bib on until right before the cameras would start taking pictures.  He returned to the tights but couldn’t resist having more fun first.  “Daddy’s gonna get that porkchop leg.”  He leaned in and started fake biting and blowing raspberries on her chubby thigh and she squealed with joy – a joy that he was sharing.  He loved to play with her rolls knowing that it was Sookie’s milk that had fattened his baby up.  “Look at this pudge!  I love it Moyra.  Mommy’s milk is the best.”  He finally got the tights on and called out.  “I know you’re there Mommy.  Have you been enjoying your spying?”

Sookie giggled at them from the doorway.  “I love spying on your baby time.  Are you guys ready or should I give you more time alone?”

“We’re ready.”  He held her out proudly.  “See how I got all the parts of the dress correct – even the tights?”

“Yes Papa Bear, you always do a good job.  The public is going to love your little princess.  But why are you kneeling on the floor?”

“The table is too low for my height.  It was easier to dress her on the bed while kneeling.”

“Easier for you to chomp on those thighs you mean.”  He just smirked, his wife knew him too well.  “This chamber is nice though, even if the changing table is too low for someone of your altitude.”

“Yes, it was nice of Potts and Alcide to build us a haven for our visits to Arkansas.”

“30 Minutes!”  They heard from the top of the stairs.

“Got to love Nan.  She knows how to break up a family moment better than anyone I know.”

“Mommy, did you hear Nan?”  Hunter ran into the room to check.

“Yes Hunter, is Frannie ready?”

“She’s upstairs with Gran and Pam.  They wanted to play with Jack.”

“Let’s go.”  Eric handed Moyra to Sookie and he picked up his little Dude for the walk upstairs.  Eric looked over Hunter’s suit, though he didn’t need to since it matched his.  “Are you ready for the interview Hunter?”

“Yes Daddy.  Though hopefully nobody will have questions for me.  It’s all about the baby this time, right?”

“Yes, but they may be curious about your reaction to Moyra.”

“Whatever.”

“You spend too much time with Pam.”  He gave him a serious look.  “Don’t answer a reporter with ‘whatever’ during the interview.  Okay?”

The look put Hunter in the right mode since Eric was serious.  “Yes sir.”  Hunter knew that Daddy liked to play and was easy going, but not when he spoke in ‘that tone’.

Nan ushered them into the dining room where they would wait to be called for the interview.  The formal living room had been transformed for the news conference and was already set up with cameras and lighting equipment.  Sookie hated interviews, but they were a huge part of their life right now.  The only good part was doing them with Potts, Alcide and now little Jack.  She still missed being with her friends on a daily basis, but the publicity had them together at least every month until recently.  The last three months had been the longest they’d gone without seeing each other since she and Potts were recovering from giving birth and having newborns.  Yesterday was a joyous reunion.  Eric and family traveled to Arkansas since Moyra had an easier start to life and they figured she’d travel more easily.  Jack had been born early and he needed extra medical care right after the birth so they simply hadn’t seen each other.  He was fine now though and responding to Frannie and Pam as they spoke to him and made faces while Gran had him firmly in her arms.

Now that everyone was present, Nan called the group together for a final review of the interview.  “So we have 10 reporters waiting for us in the living room, we’ll do the introductions of the . . . princess and prince, Eric first then Alcide, based on birth order, then we’ll open the floor for questions.”

Remembering some of the other tough interviews Sookie endured after the supernatural reveal Eric clarified.  “The questions have been vetted, correct?”

“Yes, if anyone asks something I haven’t approved, I’ll address it immediately.”

Eric nodded.  Nan was efficient but the woman still irritated him.  He knew she didn’t really give a shit about Sookie and the kid’s, but she appeared to care since he and Godric corrected her just before Christmas.  He spent a moment recalling what finally put him over the edge with her behavior.  Nan spent the holiday wrapped in silver after Eric took out his aggression with enthusiasm.  A week before Christmas, she was meeting with Eric to plan some publicity for the New Year and she pushed him too far.  First she came onto him, something he’d rebuffed years before and this time was no different.  Then she asked if he shared Sookie and he lost it.  He ripped her tongue out before calling for guards and having her restrained at his warehouse for further lessons.  A gurgle from his baby brought him out of his thoughts and he smiled.  “What’s that Moyra?”  He got an evil glint in his eye, he loved toying with Nan.  “You want Auntie Nan to hold you?”  He held Moyra out to Nan.  Sookie giggled at her husband.  It was perfectly safe since Godric had warned Nan to behave or she would lose her undead life.  As head of the US Council and planned head of the Global council once it was firmly established she knew it wasn’t an idle threat from Godric.

As if holding a bomb set to detonate Nan stood still for a moment before finally asking for relief.  “I’ll take her.”  Frannie stepped up.  She knew Eric liked having his fun, but Frannie hated Nan and she didn’t want Moyra spending any extra time with her if needed.  She glared at Eric and admonished him “Dad, you know Moyra doesn’t like her.”

It still warmed his heart to hear Frannie calling him Dad.  The adoption for both Frannie and Hunter had been finalized just in May – and from that day on, Frannie called them Mom and Dad; it wasn’t discussed, it just happened.  He smiled and responded to his older daughter.  “Nobody does Lilla.”  The room chuckled at Nan’s expense until she excused herself saying she’d be back five minutes before the interview.

As Nan walked out the door, Sookie had one last laugh at the uppity vampire’s expense then decided to feed Moyra as a way to hopefully keep her calm for the interview.  Potts decided it was a good idea so the friends moved to the den to gossip while they took care of their babies.  “So Jack is really all fine now?”

“Yeah, he just needed some extra time – mostly for his lungs.  He can scream just fine now, so he’s perfect.  No long lasting effects.”

“That’s great.

“His early weeks consumed all my time though – so I apologize we never spoke.”

“I know that Potts.  No need to apologize.  We wanted to come up but Ludwig didn’t want us bringing any germs.”  She took a moment to get Moyra latched on then asked more about Potts’ experience.  “So you’re all recovered from the C-section?”

“Yeah – that took a while but I’m fine.  I really appreciate that Gran came up twice to help.  How about you?  I know you said it all went fine, but how was Mr. Protective?”

“It was horrible.  I didn’t tell you anything while you were on bed rest but the last weeks before Moyra came he was in super caveman mode.  Pam started taking all the meetings at the farmhouse; we literally couldn’t have any vampires up at Sharanya.  Well, Pam, but that was it.  And no other men.  The guards stayed at the edge of the property – literally.”

“Was anyone hurt, I heard a rumor?”

“It was just a rumor.  It was right before, or perhaps the reason we made the decision to keep vamps and other men away.  Eric had someone in for a meeting.  He only ran him off for commenting about my baby bulge – no actual violence.  For those final weeks, poor Pam was running interference, holding all the meetings – then back to Eric for approvals.”  She shook her head at the memory.  “We sent her to Paris for a week of shopping as a thank you.  Literally right after the birth Eric calmed.  In fact, he healed me, I fed Moyra and he asked me to dress so he could stand on the porch with Moyra and call everyone in the area up so he could introduce her.  He was just a bit proud.”  Sookie smirked.  “With Pam, Hunter and Frannie by his side he held her up and beamed while everyone clapped.  Turns out, he’d alerted Pam that he was planning to do it, so she notified many of the guards – were and vampire.  We had quite a crowd.  They all kneeled as soon as he called her Princess Moyra Solveig Northman.  The Princess slept right through it.”

“I can imagine him standing there proudly.”  Potts picked up Jack to burp him before she continued.  He blessed her with a very loud belch and they both giggled.  “So you needed healing – was it bad?”

“Geez, I hate to talk about it since you had surgery to get little Jack out.  It wasn’t bad, minor tearing.”

“It’s not your fault I needed a C-section.  How was Eric during the birth?  Alcide was a wreck.”

“Same here.  Even though everything was going fine – he was pacing and yelling at both doctors.  I had to yell at him a few times because he was scaring Hunter.  I finally threatened to have him kicked out – though I know nobody could’ve really removed him.  The threat worked and once he realized what he was doing he calmed enough and he was right there while I labored and he sat with me in the bed to help me push.  Cut the cord himself.”

“You had Hunter there?  Frannie?”

“They were waiting with Gran and Pam; I didn’t want them in the room – just in case.”  Potts nodded.  “Eric collected them right after I was healed and covered.  Gran was gushing – well you can imagine.  Hunter and Frannie were very excited to meet Roo on the outside.  There was some fighting about who got to hold her first; Gran won and Pam sulked.”

They were both quiet for a few minutes, tending to their babies.  Since they’d mentioned the birth, her thoughts drifted to the memory – not the actual birth, which hurt and it need not be remembered – but the moments just after Moyra arrived.  Both through the bond and his expression, complete with over spilled bloody tears, Sookie knew that Eric was in awe of the birth, proud of her and in love with his baby girl – even when she was still covered in goo.  He stayed with Moyra while Finard helped Sookie deliver the afterbirth.  Sookie melted as she watched Eric, with his huge hands, gently help clean his baby with Ludwig all while cooing loving words and promises to her.  When he returned to the bed, he also cleaned Sookie quickly, as Moyra had been placed on her chest just after the delivery and when he was satisfied with Sookie’s condition, he helped Sookie hold her for her first feeding; his eyes drinking in the sight of his wife providing his baby the nourishment she needed.  Potts broke her out of her thoughts with another question about life since they’d last seen each other.

“How’s life with three?”

“Good.  Frannie is really doing well.  She hasn’t had a nightmare for months.  Hunter fell into place with us.  Moyra is just a joy.  How are you with sleep and stuff?”

“Jack is part daemon – so he won’t need as much sleep as a human baby, but for all that is holy – I need 5 hours straight at some point.  His early illness has him ‘trained’ to wake every three hours.  Co-sleeping helps.  I just grab him and feed him.”

“We do the co-sleeping too – and we do it a bit to the extreme.  In fact, we all take an afternoon nap together and wake with Eric.  Well, sometimes Gran takes Frannie and Hunter for us, but most days we all hang out in our bed just before sunset.  Frannie usually just reads since she doesn’t always need the nap but she’s still with us.  We both love it.  Eric wakes before sunset and we use that hour for total family time.”

“Can you believe you and Eric are the same people who I met a year and a half ago?”

Sookie’s eyes filled with tears and she looked at Potts shaking her head no.  “We’ve both changed so much.  Honestly, I can’t believe we didn’t kill each other sometime in the first six weeks.”

“Well there’s that too.  Let’s lighten up the topic.”  Sookie nodded for her to continue.  “If you do extreme co-sleeping – is that really EVERYONE at night or rather whenever it is you guys sleep?”

“We have an extra big bed.”

“But how do you ah, you know.”

“It’s not like we all sleep together all the time and you have to remember a few things.  First, Hunter is a telepath – he knows about sex.  Second, Eric was a Viking – the entire family slept in the same room.  He simply has a different background.  Now before you freak out, it’s not like we enjoy each other when everyone is there, but we have a signal.  If the door is open – even just a crack – anyone is welcome, otherwise, you knock first.  Simple as that.  It’s Hunter that sometimes sleeps with us anyway – Frannie just comes in to be with us when we’re all just relaxing though sometimes early on with her recovery she was with us many nights.”  Sookie switched feeding sides for a second then commented on her friend’s new figure.  “So you’ve got quite a chest there – something unusual for you.”

“Alcide is quite happy and wants to have more babies right away so I can keep it.”  Both women rolled their eyes.  “How’s your breast man doing?  More importantly, how do you keep those things up?  I mean, my Lord Sookie, you were huge before, now you look like you could fall over.”

“Thanks Potts – always could count on you for honesty.  Not that it’s a surprise – Eric is very happy with my still present tummy bulge, wide hips, jiggly thighs and of course my watermelon sized breasts.  I often catch him just staring at my chest with this dreamy and hungry look in his eyes.”  They both giggled and Sookie leaned in closer to whisper the rest.  “You know he can drink the milk, it’s a bodily fluid.”

“Yeah, I heard him mention that once.  So just between us girls, have you indulged him?”

“Of course.  I mean, it took me a while to wrap my head around it – but 1000 years with just blood to drink.  Poor guy needed a new menu item.”

“Is it weird?”

“No.  We waited ‘til her feeding stabilized and now he just has some once a day.  I mean, I already feed him my blood.”  She shrugged her shoulders.  “But this is just between us girls.  Hunter and Frannie know – well it’s hard to keep secrets from Hunter so we share information with Frannie just because.  Gran doesn’t know or Pam – jeez if Pam finds out she’ll probably want some.”

“Well, she’ll have her own source soon.”

“I know!  Finard works magic – getting Amelia pregnant on the first try.  Speaking of Finard, we’re going back in the fall to try again with the sperm from Niall.”

“So soon?”

“I don’t want to wait.  I don’t want to delay my turning and as it is, I need to wait for the kids to grow up – at least out of college.”

Potts nodded her understanding.  “Since you mentioned Finard . . . how’s the surrogate program going for fairies?”

“Finard just told me we have our first pregnancy.  It’s a Were as a surrogate.  We thought that they would be best with an appreciation of supernatural.  It’s still early so cross your fingers.”

“I will.  You did a good Sookie.”

“Please, like I told my husband, it’s not like I invented surrogate pregnancy.”

“No, but you did push Niall on trying it.  Take credit where it’s due Your Majesty.”

Sookie just stuck her tongue out her friend.

OOOoooOOOooo

While the girls caught up, Alcide and Eric chatted about the Ancient Pythoness.  “So is she still groveling?”

“Yes, it’s gotten worse since we had Moyra.  She’s respected our request to not pop in, I have to admit I’m encouraged by that.  She’s told us she realizes our perspective.  Sookie has forgiven her – that’s just her nature.  I’m not there yet.”

“Has she seen the baby?”

“We permitted one visit and she came bearing gifts.  She confirmed payment for our Britlingen guard, Kavan.  I’d already paid for her through Frannie’s college; Her Grace paid for the next 100 years and procured a second guard from the realm.  She smirked when I said we had ample guards and just said it was for the not too distant future.  The new guard will be joining us in a year.  She also had traditional gifts for all three kids:  Legos for Hunter, clothes for Frannie and an old fashioned pram for Moyra.  Her handmaidens bought everything and we were polite about it but . . . ”

“Not that I blame you, but what’s still eating at you?”

“Even with her realizations on what she put Sookie through; I believe that she would do it again.”

“WHAT?!”

He nodded his head.  “When we’ve spoken about the situation she always says she can see our point but then she’ll say she’s unsure of another way the outcome could have been reached without sending Sookie to Vegas.  THAT my friend is my hesitation.”

“I hear that.”

“She says she’s still reviewing it and promises to understand more in the future.  Hell, her visions aren’t perfect or always complete – and she knows that too.  It’s just going to take time for her to understand more and for me to accept what she’s learned.”  Hunter laughed and he turned his attention to his kids.  Frannie was keeping her brother occupied while they waited and she had done something that had him giggling like mad.  They both really loved each other; coming into the family at the same time and due to similar reasons had bonded them in a way that nobody could truly understand.  Hunter had the advantage of the fairy healing but he still kept on with his support of Frannie during her struggles.  She’d really come so far.  His oldest human daughter, who would be turning 16 this week, was excelling in her studies and music, had made a best friend through the Packsters group, and was always looking for ways to help out in their community.  Proud didn’t even come close to how he felt about Frannie and her ability to turn her situation into something wonderful.

He continued to scan the room where Pam and Gran were sitting together gushing over the pictures of Amelia’s first ultrasound.  When he started having a family with Sookie, he and Pam spoke about how he stole her chance at motherhood.  Pam had no anger about it stating she would choose him and vampirism again.  While he believed her, he also knew how excited she was about her baby due in about four months.  He prayed it would it would cut down on the Moyra clothes Pam bought but doubted it since they were having a boy.  Per Pam, boy clothes were just not as fun.

“Your majesties,” Nan had come into the room and gave a bow.  “It’s time.”

They collected the ladies and the family stood in the dining room waiting for Nan’s final signal.  Eric took a moment to check on the family.  “Everyone ready?”  He quickly grabbed Moyra’s bib to remove it.  Hopefully she’d keep that drool under control for a few minutes at least.  Then he held his hand out to Frannie and Hunter.  They obediently placed their electronics in his hand (Frannie had her own Blackberry and Hunter had a NintendoDS).  They’d had one incident during an interview with electronic noises and Eric ensured by removing them they wouldn’t have the same problem again.  He handed them to Nan for safekeeping.

The kids then nodded that they were ready and Sookie added as she handed him the baby.  “We are sweetie.  You ready to show off your newest princess?”

His grin was wide.  “You bet.”

At Nan’s direction, Eric and Alcide each took their newborns and walked into the living room with the family following behind them.  The photographers starting snapping pictures as soon as the door opened.  Moyra was blinking and twitching like crazy at the action so Eric turned her to face into his chest.  A few ‘ahhs’ could be heard and it was all Eric could do to not roll his eyes or laugh since he could feel Sookie’s amusement.  He moved to the podium and gave the prepared statement:

“Good evening and thank you for the opportunity to share our news.”  He paused to ensure his family was right next to him then started.  “Sookie, Pam, Frannie, Hunter, Gran and I are pleased to present our newest family member, Moyra Solveig Northman, born on March 12th at 2:45AM.”  Knowing the reporters wouldn’t be happy with just getting back shots of his baby, even if her tush was covered in cute ruffles, he turned her around to face the cameras.  “Her name Moyra means ‘wished for child’ and Solveig is ancient Norse for ‘from the house of strength’.”  A reporter opened his mouth as if to ask a question and Eric cut him off.  “Before we have any questions, King Alcide Herveaux has his own introduction to make.”

They shifted on the makeshift stage a bit and Alcide started.  “Thank you Eric.  Queen Herveaux and I would like to introduce our first child, Jackson Ran Herveaux.  He was born early, on March 30th at 10:15 AM.”  The reporters laughed when Jack started screaming and Potts took him for some soothing, Alcide’s arm wrapped around her.  “Now I believe Nan is moderating our questions.”

Reporter 1:  “Any significance to the name Jackson Ran King Herveaux?”  As they all suspected would happen, the public at large had taken to calling the supernatural leaders by their titles – they didn’t expect it yet they didn’t correct it.

“Jackson or Jack as we call him is after my father.  Ran is Norse for ‘wolf shield’; the Norse middle name was selected as an honor for my fellow monarch and friend, Eric Northman.”

Reporter 2:  “Queen Northman, does the king change diapers?”

They expected this question and answered it honestly.  “Of course.  We share parenting.  Eric picked out Moyra’s outfit and dressed her tonight.  I was given the task of getting Hunter into a suit.  I’m not sure which of us had the harder task – Moyra’s legs wiggle everywhere making tights especially hard but Hunter hates ties.”  The crowd laughed at her comments.

Reporter 2 follow-up:  “And Queen Herveaux is the same true in your house?”

“You bet.  Alcide can’t get enough of Jack.”

Reporter 2 follow-up:  “So Queen Northman, what is the new Princess wearing today – or rather who?”

Sookie nodded to Eric, the outfit was his pick.  “I’m almost afraid to answer that since the last time someone asked Frannie who she was wearing, boxes of clothing arrived from that designer.  So I’ll tell you and then ask the company not to send anything, please.  It’s Ralph Lauren Childrenswear.”

Reporter 2 follow-up:  “But we know Princess Frannie.  Those clothes were donated or something weren’t they?”

“Yes, you know min Lilla.  They were all given to the local woman’s shelter.”

Reporter 2 follow-up:  “Min Lilla?  That’s new.”

Frannie answered.  “It started after the baby was born.  It was either Moyra’s arrival or the approach of my birthday that prompted it.  It means little one and I think it represents his wish to have me age backwards and make me younger if he could.”

Eric just shrugged his shoulders.  “What parent wouldn’t?”

Reporter 3:  “Prince Hunter and Princess Frannie, how are you adjusting to the baby?”

Frannie started.  “I hate my schoolwork now since it’s time I could be spending with Moyra.  She has us all in love with her.  She started laughing two weeks ago so now we have contests on who can make her laugh the longest or loudest.”

Reporter 3 follow-up:  “Who wins?”

Sookie answered with a grin.  “She’s a Daddy’s girl.  He wins every time.”

Hunter added.  “She’s more fun now that she laughs except when she has one of her screamin’ fits.  Then she only wants Daddy.  But I get that, he’s pretty cool.”  Eric beamed at his son’s words.

Reporter 4:  “Princess Frannie, why aren’t you on summer break?”

She laughed while she answered honestly.  With her thumb pointing to Eric she answered, “Have you met my Dad?  He’s pretty tough – ‘I’ve read about studies where students forget most of their lessons while off for the summer, I won’t have that happen to my children’.”  The crowd laughed since she delivered part of her answer while trying to imitate Eric.  They were also busy noting that Frannie referred to him as Dad.  This was the first they’d heard it.  “In all seriousness, we have to travel for kingdom business and I lose study days to that.  To make it up, the plan is for me to just work year-round.  And he does let me have some breaks.  We’re off this week for example.”

Reporter 4 follow-up:  “Are you staying in Arkansas?”

Frannie reminded him.  “Sorry, you know we don’t discuss our personal travel plans.”  Eric nodded proudly at Frannie.

Reporter 4 follow-up:  “My apologies Princess.  So you’re turning 16 this week.  Any special plans?”

Sookie interrupted.  “Our plans for her birthday are a surprise even for Frannie so you won’t get any tidbits here.”  Eric and Sookie shared an excited look.  They really hoped she would enjoy the week they had planned in Sweden for her birthday.  They were leaving right before sunrise in the morning and had even arranged for Frannie’s best friend Kaley to join them.  It helped that Kaley was Peter’s daughter and as the head of security, he would be there anyway.  They had a week planned of relaxation, tours and a special spa evening just for the two girls to enjoy without the family.  Teens needed that away time and having Kavan as an invisible guard enabled Eric to provide for that.

Reporter 3:  “Princess Frannie.  If I’m correct, that’s the first time you publicly referred to King Northman as Dad.  Is there a story behind that?”

Frannie replied.  “Yes.”  Then paused.  “Did you want to hear the story?”  The reporter laughed and nodded.  “It’s simply really.  In May, our adoptions were finalized and from then on it just seemed natural.  He’s Dad and she’s Mom.”

Reporter 3 follow-up:  “Fair enough Princess.”  He turned his gaze to Eric.  “So King Northman, do you have a message for those still opposing your adoption and are trying to have your right to be Hunter, Frannie and Moyra’s father legally revoked?”

“They can go ahead and try.  The world is changing and while we’ve had some opponents pop-up since the reveal of supernaturals, overall acceptance was winning out.

Reporter 3 follow-up:  “And how’s having a teenager going?”

“She is a perfect child, they all are.”  He moved to her and kissed the top of her head and grabbed Hunter’s hand while Frannie held him.  The cameras snapped wildly trying to capture the actions.  “As far as having a teenager – we have none of the issues I’ve heard as horror stories from others.”

Reporter 3 follow-up:  And Hunter, are you also continuing your studies over the summer?”

“Yes.  I do my schoolwork with Mommy so we just do some everyday.  Daddy and I speak Swedish together when it’s just us.”

Reporter 1:  “King Herveaux, you mentioned Jackson was early.  I’m sure you’ve heard there are rumors about that relating to mixing Were and Daemon genes.  Any comment?”

“Yes, I can put that to rest.  Though we believe it’s not anyone’s business, I’ll clarify the situation.  We had a scare in February with the Soldiers of the Light, I’m sure everyone recalls the attack on my family.”  He looked to the crowd and saw the nods of recognition; then he continued.  “We kept this from the press as it was a private matter – so we thought – but my wife was injured during the attack and she went on bed rest.  We were very happy that she made it as many weeks as she did before premature labor started.  There was no issue with interspecies breeding at all.  He needed extra care and it’s only been the past few weeks that we’ve felt secure enough to hold this introduction.”

Reporter 5:  “How was Queen Herveaux injured, what are the details?”

Nan interjected.  “I don’t see how that’s something the public needs to know.  Next question.”

Reporter 6:  “Queen Northman.  What’s the latest on your book?”

“It goes on sale in August.  I have a passage to share tonight when the questions are over.”

Reporter 7:  “King Northman, you’ve been working towards getting the law changed to permit Human and Vampire marriage.  How’s that going?”

“Several states are on board.  My own state hasn’t committed yet.  Since Sookie and I ARE married via vampire custom, we have decided to wait for Louisiana to see the light before we marry per human law.”

Reporter 7 follow-up:  I imagine it will be the social event of the state when it happens.

Sookie cut in.  “No thanks.  We had a huge ceremony for the pledging.  I’m not going through that again.”  She got a chuckle for that one.

Reporter 8:  “King Northman, does the man who donated the sperm know. . . “

Nan was nodding to two guards before he even got the whole thought out.  “That’s a question that’s off the table.”  The reporter was removed from the room to ensure that others realized how seriously Nan took her instructions about only asking approved questions.

Reporter 9:  So Queen Northman.  Any change in your position of having a nanny now that you have three children?”

“No, we’re staying firm on our desire to raise the children without a nanny.  Frannie has a tutor, they both have language and music teachers, and Gran helps – but that’s it.  Our office includes work areas for Hunter, Frannie and now a play area for Moyra.  Difficult kingdom business is handled after the kids are in bed for the night.

Reporter 3:  Queen Herveaux, Queen Northman, how are the babies doing with sleeping?”

Potts answered first.  “As a part daemon, I don’t sleep as much as a human and the same seems to be true for Jack.  I still wish we could get something longer than three hours – even as a daemon I need some sleep.”  They laughed at her a bit before she continued.  “I know Sookie’s blessed with a sleepy baby.”

Sookie snickered towards her friend and answered.  “Yes, I may be jinxing myself if we have more kids, but Moyra started sleeping 7 hours straight at three weeks old.”

Reporter 3:  “Gran, how are you doing with all these grandchildren?”  Gran had attended a few of the other interviews and was known simply as Gran.

“I’m loving it.  I’ve got these three,” she gestured to Frannie, Hunter and Moyra, “right up the hill from me.  I’ve been to see Jackson a few times already, Pam and her wife will be first time parents in October, Godric and Toni are due in September so they’ll have two little ones and my son Jason and his wife Michelle are due any day now.  I’m Gran to all of them and happier than a cat with a fresh pan of litter.”  The reporters ate that up.  Gran’s southernisms were frequently quoted after interviews.

The questions continued for several minutes.  At one point, Moyra started getting a little fussy and Eric needed to adjust his hold and coo at his baby – she calmed immediately of course.  The women in the room swooned.  In interviews prior to the birth, Eric had been very open about enjoying fatherhood, but seeing him with an infant was over the top for some of them.

Reporter 10:  “King Northman, the princess certainly appears to have a firm grip on your hair.”

“That’s typical.  She loves to grab onto hair.  My wife and older daughter have protected themselves from that as you can see.”

Reporter 10:  “Yes, Queen Northman and Princess Frannie are safe with those lovely braids.”

Frannie commented.  “Well, thanks to Dad.”

Two female reporters gasped and one said.  “He does your hair too?”  Sookie just nodded and kept her amusement over the fawning to herself.

As the interview was live, the Ancient Pythoness sat and listened and using the visions via a handmaiden who was watching, she saw some of the broadcast.  Eric, Alcide and their families were exactly what she envisioned as the face of supernatural.  She was pleased.  It was also nice to get a glimpse of the kids – she noted, again using a vision to see, how Moyra had changed since the one time she’d visited.  In her visions, she did see a time when she and Eric came to an understanding, but she also knew it was a ways off.  She could be patient; she had no choice – it was for Eric to forgive her and she knew this.  She was focused on finalizing the council globally at the moment.  That would take through the rest of the year.  After that was in place, she would go into seclusion.  She knew that time to herself to review the past few months and years would help her gain the understanding that Eric was so desperate for her to grasp.  Only then could she go to him for another chance at reconciliation.  She laughed out loud at the current vision of the interview:  To keep Moyra happy, Eric was holding her up to his face while she gnawed on his chin.  That wasn’t something you saw every day.

The Ancient Pythoness’ focus turned to Alcide and Potts in her vision.  Gran had just stepped in to take Jack while they addressed the expected questions about a Were and a Daemon procreating.  They had planned out their answers and covered them well.  Doctors Ludwig and Finard were on hand to address any medical concerns but only a few items came up that the group was unwilling to answer.  After the reporters confirmed they had no additional questions, they turned to Sookie for her promised passage from her book.  She stood at the podium and read:

“Once Upon A Time,” She started and the room chuckled.  “Well, I am a fairy and this is my tale. . .”  She explained and moved on.  “An innocent and somewhat naïve human fairy hybrid woman met an ancient and powerful vampire man and they fell in love.  What happened after that was wonderful, scary, and,” She paused to look at Eric and the kids, “simply miraculous.  While the woman never expected the life she was living, she realized it was her greatest wish come true.”  She turned to Eric and made the symbol for ‘wish’, which he returned, and she continued reading as Eric gazed adoringly at his family.  In his head, he thanked Godric for his kick in the butt; he even spared a quick thank you to The Ancient Pythoness for ordering Godric to do so.  Mostly, he sent his gratitude to Sookie through the bond.  She might be the fairy reading her tale but because of her, he got his Happily Ever After.

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42 thoughts on “Chapter 73 – Introducing

  1. Pingback: It’s the end . . . | magsmacdonald

  2. Bravo! This has been one of my favorite stories. I loved watching the growth of your characters. Your Eric is one of my favorites. I hate to see this end. Thank you for sharing this!!!

  3. Ending brought a few tears. I know you had some detractors, but this was a helluva tale and so worth the time and energy for you to write it and an absolute delight for us to read.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!
    Pat

  4. Wonderful end. Glad that Eric is not just letting the AP get away with thinking everything she did was justified. Gran is in heaven with all the kiddies I bet. Yey for Amelia and Pammy too. Ty for writing and sharing with us.

  5. This is such a wonderful story. Fantastic end. I don’t think it could have been more perfect. Thank you for sharing your gift and vision with us. I can not wait to find out what else you have in store for us.

  6. Perfection! What a great way to end the story. I loved seeing Eric be a proud Papa who pitches in and does his share. This story is one of my all-time favorites. Thank you for having the vision and creativity to nurture it through to the very end. Fan Forever (FF)!

  7. Absolutely wonderful! Such a wonderful and beautifully told story. Of course it is always hard to see them go through the tough times, but they came out on top and have a wonderful family.
    I love me some daddy Eric!
    Sorry to see this end, but I am already loving your new story and can’t wait for more.

  8. This was a beautiful story. I enjoyed it from start to finish. Thank you. The growth and changes E/S took was so fun to read. This was a perfect ending. Thank you again for a truly wonderful story!

  9. Author! Author!
    Loved this last chapter, Daddy Eric dressing the baby (hated those tights!), the hair pulling, Frannie calling hin “Dad,” and the plans for another baby! Love the baby names & meanings! Alcide & Potts having their baby so soon afterward was good & bad, but all is well. Giving Baby Jack a Viking middle name was a great thing to do. Splendid chapter all the way through!
    Simply sensational, spellbinding, spectacular, and all other “s” adjectives & superlatives! I loved this story. It’s so emotionally palpable; at times it’s had me in tears at the longing & heartache during Sookie’s captivity, then I’ve laughed my ass off at some of the uproaringly improbable, funny situations and what I call “Jasonisms!” I was on the edge of my sofa, bed, or wherever I may planted my butt during the planning and takeover chapters… I may have been as anxious as Sookie! You certainly made that come through loud & clear – from her & Eric! No review would be complete without mentioning how clearly a great love, faith, and trust was depicted between YOUR Eric & Sookie! You made them so strong. You described & wrote of a one of a kind love. We can’t forget Roo! She went through so much to get there! So wonderful to finally meet her! I think it’s perfect that Roo ended up being a girl.
    Mags, this story was just stunning, from the first chapter to the last! I loved it, and can’t wait to read it again. This was epic. You, my friend, are an authoress.

  10. Wow what a wonderful ending to a very special story. I have really enjoyed Eric and Sookies journey. Loved that everyone grew and learned a bit about life -even the AP. Apologies for my bad reviewer status, I tend to read several chapters at a time and just get swept up! Looking forward to your future stories.

    Stay warm
    Betsy

  11. Many thanks for the wonderfully entertaining story. I really enjoyed the character development throughout, it was a great journey to participate in. Looking forward to more of your work. All the best xx

    • I’ve been ‘watching’ you read – I love doing that – seeing the ‘likes’ or comments as a new reader gets to go through it from start to finish.

      It has a companion piece – or series of epilogues if you will – each one is stand alone – no cliffies. You can find those under Glimpses of Beauty and the Vampire Beast.

      Glad you liked it.

      ~mags

  12. Terrific story! I really enjoyed it. I believe I successfully “followed” you on this website, so I would really appreciate any subsequent part of this story. Well done…

  13. I truly enjoyed seeing Eric in daddy mode. I loved this story sooooo much even though I usually try and stay away from angst BUT I will admit you through me life raft when you told us when Sookie would get rescued lol

    Thank you for writing!

    • Glad you found my stuff. If you want more of the Northmans – and Daddy Eric, be sure to read Glimpses of BVB. It’s not listed as complete but nothing leaves you hanging. it’s a series of one shots (well, one is a two shot) that gives you move into their lives. I have even more planned and if I post it will be a ‘complete’ section.
      M

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