Tissue warning – LOW
Frying Pan warning: Get ’em ready. I can handle it (not really, I’m just trying to be brave) – I hope to post again this weekend so don’t yell too much!!
Chapter 5 – Taking care of business
“What’s Bobby’s condition? What happened?” Eric asked Tony after they found each other in the ER waiting area.
“He’s unconscious, or he was when I last saw him. His nose and left cheekbones are broken; actually the doctor used the word shattered to describe his cheek. Several broken ribs and lots of bruises. Even though he doesn’t have any internal injuries it’s going to take a long time for him to recover. We were at Mirrors, that new restaurant just like 4 blocks from here with all the auction bidders he’d hired. He stepped out to call you, and when he took longer than I thought was reasonable I went to find him, but the damage was done.”
“Have you reported that it was Stackhouse?”
“No, because that could mean getting you involved – exposing your role in the auction.”
“You know anyone on the police force here? I know the chief but would rather not call him on a Saturday night.”
“Couple of pack brothers. Want me to call someone?”
“Please. I need to call my doctor for his care.”
Eric stepped to a more private area for his call. “Ludwig, I’ve got a situation.”
“Better be serious to call me this late on a Saturday night.”
“My dayman’s been beaten severely. Can you assist with a healing?”
“You have blood?”
“Can you meet me at Fangtasia in two hours?”
He went back to update Tony. “I’ve got my own doctor meeting me at Fangtasia later for some healing blood. We need to get his injuries recorded before she heals him. Do you have anyone coming?”
“Detective Sheridan from the Shreveport Police department is on his way. We’ll need to make the statements while his partner documents the injuries before you heal him.”
“Here he is now.” He gestured to a large man walking into the waiting room. “Detective Sheridan, this is Mr. Northman.” He used Mister since the detective’s partner was not supernatural.
“Thanks for coming out Detective.”
“Not a problem Mr. Northman, Tony provided some background. I’ll be taking your statements. My partner, Detective Farner will be documenting the injuries.”
Since Tony had alerted the ER staff that detectives were on their way, they were ready to work with Detective Farner and lead her back to Bobby, while the other three moved to an empty waiting area. The detective took Tony’s statement and put out a warrant for Jason Stackhouse’s arrest. Though he was curious, he didn’t ask the vampire sheriff how he knew Jason’s address or his usual hangouts; he just reported them as information helpful for the case. They met up with Detective Farner who had all the documentation she needed and the police left.
“I’m headed to Fangtasia to inform a vampire in my custody that he’s making a blood donation tonight.”
“How will that go over?”
“Not that he has a choice, but it will take 30 days off his incarceration. That’s something he’ll want.”
“I don’t think I want to know the details of that.”
“You don’t. I’ll see you shortly.”
“MASTER, so nice of you to join us on a BUSY Saturday night.”
“If it’s so busy, why are you in MY office with your feet up on MY desk?”
“You have the bigger office. I was just taking a break. Sheesh, get the stick out of your ass why don’t you.”
He’d had it with her but really didn’t want to engage in another fight right now. He had something more important to do.
“When Ludwig arrives, bring her downstairs. I need to have a conversation with Liam.”
“LIAM? He’s only a month into his 12 month sentence.”
“Yes, and I need his blood to heal Bobby.”
“Did Bobby trip over his own feet?” She laughed at her own attempt at humor; Eric did not join her.
“He was beaten up due to a work situation so I’m seeing to his healing.”
“Will he be better by Wednesday? Saks is having a sale and I need him in New Orleans for it.”
“Do you ever think about anyone besides yourself?”
“I’m saving YOU money.”
“No you’re not. I cut you off. Your credit cards are canceled and Bobby’s time is off limits to you. Find your own day person.”
“What do you mean?”
“I’m glad I called you back to open this bar. It’s made me see that you weren’t ready to be away from me as your maker. You need to grow up Pam, and you’ll be doing that by earning your own way while still right here where I can monitor you. You clearly can’t be trusted. Now get back out on the floor until closing. The only time you can leave the main bar area is to walk Ludwig downstairs.”
With a loud Pop in the room, the doctor appeared. “I’m here, you can take me yourself.”
“Good evening Doctor. Thank you for coming on a Saturday night.”
He turned to Pam as she rolled her eyes at her maker’s manners. “Get out on the floor, NOW!”
As she spun on her heel to leave, Eric guided the doctor down to his vampire holding area. “I’m sorry I needed to deal with Pam. It was my intention to inform Liam that he’s making a donation before you arrived. You can wait here.” He gestured in the hallway outside one of his holding cells. “I’ll come back for you when I’ve explained things. Do you need a seat?”
“No, I’m fine.”
After donning some leather gloves, he entered one of his cells and proceeded to unlock the coffin in the room. He had a blood in his hands and the nose on the vampire in the coffin flared as he smelled the food he’d been denied for a month. “Before I give you this, I’ll tell you why I’m here. I need your blood for a healing. In exchange, you get the blood in my hands right now and a month off your sentence. Agreed?” The vampire nodded his head and Eric gave him the blood that he eagerly drank. “Good, now Doctor Ludwig is going to extract your blood via a needle. If you give her any problems, we’ll skip the nice way of doing it and I’ll slice your arm over a bowl to collect it. You’ll lose more that way – so you’re going to be cooperative, right?”
“Yes Sheriff.” He was able to answer now that he’d had some blood.
The extraction was quick and Ludwig rode with Eric back to the hospital. “I’ll handle the glamour and hospital records while you treat Bobby.”
When they arrived back at the ER, Tony was waiting for them with good news. “Stackhouse has been arrested. He’s already been processed and sitting in a cell.”
“Your friends work fast.”
“They picked him up at the dive bar in Minden you mentioned. You made it easy.”
Eric was relieved. He was trying to figure out how to post a guard with Sookie for Jason – but without Sookie knowing about it. Not an easy task at all. With Jason in jail, hopefully cooling off, he didn’t have that worry for now. He and Ludwig made quick work of the Bobby situation and soon, Bobby was walking out of the hospital on his own. “Thank you Eric.”
“Not a problem. This happened due to a work task, the healing was owed.”
“You’ll need to protect Miss Stackhouse, Jason threatened her while he was talking to me.”
“He’s been arrested. You’ll be pressing charges.” It was a statement, not a question and really Bobby knew, saying no wasn’t an option anyway.
“Oh, you bet. Wait, I don’t have any marks.”
“You were photographed by the Shreveport police before your healing. We’re in good shape.” Bobby nodded and left with Tony who’d agreed to drive him home. Eric had only about an hour before sunrise, so he decided to check on Sookie and Hunter – but from the window. Tonight, or this very early morning, he was pleased to see Sookie wrapped in a quilt, he’d guessed the one that the nurses bought her from the Auction. He still hated seeing her slumped over the bed; that just couldn’t be comfortable. He glanced at Hunter’s face just to see if again, his presence woke the boy, but not this time. What happened this time is SOOKIE woke up so he moved quickly out of sight hoping she hadn’t seen HIM. OOPS! His back was to the outside wall while he waited a moment to be sure he could fly off but no such luck. She must’ve seen something because she stood and moved to the window – at least that’s what Eric thought he saw out of his limited line of sight to the room. After a quick glance around, she moved away from the window and headed to the bathroom. He took the opportunity to leave while the coast was clear. Tonight all this stalker-ish behavior would end, he promised himself. Tonight, he was going to meet them both – even if Fangtasia was burning to the ground, he was going to meet them.
Sookie stepped in to take her shower. She normally did this before bed, just around the nurse’s shift change at 11PM when they were less likely to be in the room. Oh, everyone knew she showered in Hunter’s bath but she preferred if the nurses didn’t see it – then they couldn’t get in trouble because of her. But in a gesture to provide comfort, Jessica had been rubbing her back last night and the next thing she knew, she was awake. She was glad something woke her before the day fully started so she could get her shower; it was strange though, like some presence suddenly popped into her head. She could also swear she saw movement outside the window, but didn’t see anything when she checked it out. Whatever, it wasn’t even light out so she couldn’t expect to be functioning properly yet. Today, she really wanted to get Hunter to the playroom. She knew his new lethargy would make that hard, but even if they wheeled his bed in or used one of those more reclining type wheel chairs they could make it work; he needed the playtime. Yes, she’d make that her mission for the day.
It was a while before Hunter woke, and that was only after his breakfast was delivered. He was pretty groggy and Sookie really hated that medicine. Her poor baby had no energy after breakfast and she was afraid they wouldn’t grant her request to get him to the playroom. While he napped, she met with Theresa, Hunter’s favorite nurse. She explained how she really wanted him to get into the play room today and since he didn’t have dialysis, they had the whole day to work something out. Theresa was hesitant since Hunter couldn’t sit up and they couldn’t wheel his bed into that room: That was a hospital no-no. When she explained this to Sookie, the distraught mother started shaking her head. “There has to be a way. Theresa, you know damn well he’s getting worse and he needs to do things he enjoys. What about one of those reclining wheelchairs?”
“That might work. I’ll see what I can find.”
“What do you mean I’m stuck here?”
“Jason, you beat a man. I have the report from the Shreveport Police Department – with pictures of his injuries. You’re lucky I just locked you up here when I got the call about the warrant for you arrest. I coulda turned you over to them and you’d be in a bigger lockup with no friends and possibly cellmates. You just hang tight til you’re arraigned.”
“What about a lawyer?”
“Portia Bellefleur will be here sometime today.”
“Sometime? I got rights.”
“And it’s Sunday in Bon Temps. I can call Shreveport and have someone come over if you want, but Portia agreed to help you pro bono at least to start.”
“Fuck Andy, I got work tomorrow. I cain’t be sitting here, waiting for your sister, waiting for the judge.”
“You shoulda thought about that before you hurt that guy.”
“He knows who bought my Grandpa’s guns. I wannem back.”
“They weren’t yours. Sookie owned the house and the contents per your Gran’s will. We’ve been through this. Maybe if youda been nicer to her before all this happened, she woulda givenem back to you.”
“Fuck you Andy.”
“I’ll leave you to cool down. And you can’t talk to my sister Portia like that when she gets here. Ya hear me?”
Jason couldn’t believe he was trapped in this cell. He wondered how they found him from Shreveport so fast, and who the wimp was that couldn’t handle a beatin’ without calling the cops. ‘Pictures, they got pictures of his injuries. Couple bruises, that’s it! Wimp.’ In his head, Jason continued to rant about his situation and the unfairness of losing what he considered his property. The desire he had for the guns was taking over all rational thought. He didn’t even care that the Springfield was worth lots of money – he just wanted his Grandpa’s guns. As far as Jason was concerned, Sookie stole them; just like she stole the farmhouse and the property. He knew this in his soul just like he knew Sookie killed Gran by taking that damn drug baby in and making Gran care for him. Gran was too old to be taking care of a baby – and a sickly one at that. He vowed that his bitch sister was going to pay when he got out.
Eric rose with about an hour and a half until sunset. He started first with his email and had updates from Mustapha and bobby:
Indira went out with me for a bit last night and we had limited success:
*None of Hunter’s current nurses could be found at home last night so I tracked down one from his stay at Good Shepherd. She gave me some interesting information. Seems Alcide Herveaux and Sookie ‘dated’ for a while. I put dated in quotes since they met at the hospital while Alcide was visiting his dying mother and they didn’t date as much as ‘hook up’ according to this nurse. Sookie was the one who ended it and Herveaux was less than pleased.
*I was unable to have Indira glamour Jason or Maxine last night. Maxine had a large gathering at her house when we arrived and Jason was nowhere to be found. I investigated today and I guess you know where he was. Hope Bobby is alright. I did go to Merlotte’s and had dinner, without Indira as you told her to keep away from anyone in Bon Temps for now. Interesting news just from the town gossip:
*A local were, Tray Dawson, was there and someone named Lala was thanking him for the work to Sookie’s car. That lead to joking about how he needed to sneak her car out of the Merlotte’s parking lot last weekend to do the maintenance on a Saturday night, free of charge. Seems that Sam Merlotte was in on it and ensured that Sookie didn’t notice her missing car keys or car for that matter. Dawson was concerned though that the car was getting beyond the ability to keep in good and safe repair and Sookie has repeatedly refused an older but more stable car as a gift from him. This town sure loves her. Well most do.
*My waitress, Arlene Fowler who spent most of my time there gossiping instead of waitressing, rolled her eyes at the Tray Dawson conversation; then complained to her boyfriend Rene about how undeserving Sookie was for all the attention. I took the liberty of investigating the woman and shamelessly had Indira glamour her (since she was in the parking lot and we saw an opportunity) and discovered that Sookie used to babysit her kids until she got Hunter and she’s just pissed about that. I also think the fact that she’s working on securing husband 4, lives in a trailer, and can barely manage financially has her jealous of Sookie’s help. My guess is Sookie would be jealous of the good health her kids enjoy.
*The most interesting thing I discovered today is the identity and species of the man who fought your bidder for the desk at the auction. His name is Claude Crane, owner of Hooligans Strip club and I’m sure you know this, but just in case you don’t, he’s a fairy. Let me know how you want to proceed. I’m not getting you mixed up with anything fairy until you tell me.
Please advise on next steps.
That last information really surprised Eric. ‘A fairy? A FUCKING FAIRY?’ Eric’s head was screaming with the revelation. No, he did NOT want to get mixed up with a fairy – that was for damn sure. It did create curiosity though and he wondered about the letters and other possible contents of that desk. He had promised himself he wouldn’t go through Sookie’s stuff any further, he already felt guilty about going through the house – though that wasn’t an uncommon practice for collector’s before a large auction. But to rifle through the desk – that was going a bit far. He would perhaps discuss the desk with Sookie and maybe see if he could help her go through her items.
As for the other revelations? He wanted to throttle this Arlene and shake Tray’s hand. That would all come in time. Maybe Mustapha could speak Were to Were to Tray and learn more. Perhaps just different or better parts could be purchased for her old car. Though after hearing her car was unsafe, he wanted to go purchase her a tank.
Good instincts on the Fairy. Do not pursue. I’ll advise on more later.
Can you learn more about the car from Tray? Can I offer to purchase some parts that will make the care more reliable and safe?
Jason should hopefully stay locked up for a while, Bobby was beaten badly and they have pictures. We’ll deal with his glamour later.
Don’t worry about Maxine at this point. I’m planning to introduce myself to Sookie tonight.
His next email initially made him mad since it was from Bobby and he’d told him not to work today but apparently he didn’t listen. After thinking about it, he realized that the vampire blood probably fully healed him and he didn’t need the day off. Besides, the man was finally showing initiative which he liked. Of course, the cynical side of Eric wondered how long that would last.
All the items have been moved from the farmhouse to the storage unit and Furnan Developers has been contacted.
Bon Temps police has called me to discuss my complaint. I let the calls go to voicemail as I am unsure how to deal with a request that I come in. At this point, I’m planning to ignore the calls as I was possibly too beaten to be up and about and therefore on the phone. Please advise on your wishes.
Eric wondered why the Bon Temps police needed to talk to Bobby. Surely the Shreveport reports should suffice.
I’ll talk to the Detective from Shreveport regarding the call from Bon Temps. For now, continue as you have been and ignore the calls. Send the information from your message so I can contact them directly if needed.
Thank you for coordinating the move of the auction winnings.
If I have any items for you tomorrow, I’ll send you an email before I go to rest.
With a few emails complete related to his business, Viking Industries, he was ready for his trip to the hospital. Since he was happy with his clothing selections from yesterday, he simply repeated his jeans and tee shirt and headed out. Not being a regular consumer of flowers, he was surprised to find the flower shop closed since it was Sunday so he had to settle for Gerbera daisies from the local Sam’s Club. As he drove to the hospital he wondered again why he was so interested, but gave up AGAIN trying to figure it out. Instead, he just drove with a grin on his face. The Parish hospital was not in the best of neighborhoods and he admonished himself for not thinking about this before. Now he hated the thought that on some Saturday nights she arrived back here at 2AM, parked and had to walk a ways to get to the safety of the hospital. This was something he’d really need to think about. Maybe by next Saturday she’d be open to having a certain vampire meet her at her car for an escort. . . ‘You’re getting ahead of yourself Northman.’ He admonished himself mentally.
He arrived on Hunter’s floor, bouquet of flowers in hand and stopped just outside Hunter’s door, shocked to stillness by the beautiful singing coming from the room.
Hunter was just waking from an afternoon nap when Theresa walked in with a reclining wheel chair. Sookie beamed. Hunter caught her thoughts and knew he was going to the playroom but he waited to hear the information out loud like Mommy taught him. “What’s this?”
“This, Sir Hunter, is your transportation to the playroom.” Theresa explained. “This can keep you reclined since you can’t sit up for that long right now. I know some of your friends are already there and are anxious to see you.”
“Johnny, Grady and Marjorie already have a puzzle out and ready to go.”
“Can I do that?”
“We have a lower table and you can work from the side.” It wasn’t ideal, but Theresa knew he’d be happy to just be in the room. Plus, she hoped Sookie would grab her guitar from the car since the kids loved to sing with her.
It took a while to get his wires in position so he could be lifted into the chair. The lifting was easy since he was small for a four year old. His medical issues had certainly taken a toll on his growth. As Theresa expected, Sookie ran out for a moment to grab her guitar and they all headed to the playroom. Since it had been several days since some of the kids had seen Hunter, he was greeted with some loud hooting and clapping. Both he and Sookie smiled at the welcome. He noticed his best friend Marjorie first; she was hard to miss with new purple hair. “HEY Marjorie, your hair is purple, and well – you have hair!”
“I know it’s a new wig! I kinda like it.”
“Me too. It’s neat to have a friend with purple hair.”
With Theresa’s help, he worked on the puzzle with his closest buddies, all three children who spent day after day in the hospital. This afternoon he also met some new friends, kids who were only staying a few days for some minor illness or accident. After they’d been there for about an hour, Hunter got very tired so he laid back fully into his chair while Sookie pulled out the guitar. One thing they treasured from Gran was her love of John Denver. It was corny, Sookie knew it, but Hunter loved the songs and he was so young, his only memories of Gran were the stories Sookie told him. Those stories always included Gran dancing around the house with Hunter to her favorite musician. Sookie knew most of the song chords by heart and she gave Hunter the choice, as usual.
He picked one that he knew his friends also liked. “Rocky Mountain High.” At that request, Sookie started singing and many in the room joined in. Some of the other kid’s parents were also frequent visitors to the playroom so they were aware of the sing-along and participated happily with their kids. Several songs later, Theresa came back to inform everyone that dinner was on its way up from the cafeteria and everyone needed to head back to their rooms. Hunter protested – loudly. “I DON’T WANNA GO!”
“I know baby, but now we know you can spend time here with this fancy chair, so we can come back again. Right Theresa?”
“Yes, we just have to request one of these wheelchairs since we don’t have one on this floor.” She moved towards the chair. “So, we OK Hunter – to go back to your room?”
He moped but answered, “Yeah, I guess so.”
“Hey baby, I’ll keep the guitar in your room for a bit; we can do a few more songs.” They’d made it back to his room and were helping him into bed at this point.
Hunter could see his dinner on the tray and it was the yucky meatloaf the hospital made for his renal diet. “The guitar almost makes up for that dinner.”
“I’m sorry Hunter, I’m going to Gramma’s tomorrow and will cook you something else.”
“S’OK Mommy. At least there’s jello. You eating tonight?”
“Yeah, let me go grab something.” She returned with a yogurt and some cereal, a common dinner for her and they ate together, talking about the movie they planned to watch later. Hunter was pretty tired after dinner so he simply rested, tucked under the flip flop quilt, while Sookie picked up the guitar and started playing. To match her baby’s mood, she thought of something softer to play and decided on I Won’t Give Up by Jason Mraz.
She’d just finished the song when she heard a throat clear from the doorway. Honestly, she thought she was seeing things when she looked up. Eric Northman, the gorgeous vampire she’d seen in person at Good Shepherd, was standing in the doorway with flowers. He seemed taller than she remembered, very tall. Unlike the hospital appearance where it was tied back, his hair was loose and framed his head in a golden light. His outfit was less formal too; instead of a suit he was in jeans, a tee and a leather coat and she realized she preferred this outfit. At Good Sheppard, she was too far away to appreciate how beautiful his blue eyes were – and the fact that they were now focused on her made her tummy flip flop. This had to be a mistake. She even rubbed her eyes and looked again. Yep, he was still there. Shaking off her stupor – literally with a head shake, she remembered her manners. “Hi.”
And – there you have it folks – the reason this chapter gets me the frying pan reward