Chapter 2 – Thin Line between Love and Hate
Sookie immediately started walking to the door in the office, trying to encourage everyone to leave the room. “I thought we might could meet in the dinin’ room and spread out?
Russell was surprised. “Sookie, what’s going on?”
Eric watched Sookie; she seemed nervous about something and was looking around. What is the problem he thought? Then he saw it. He was on the cover of Fall’s GQ Australia and it was sitting on the desk. ‘A fan perhaps?’ His eyebrow raised up in question when he saw it.
Sookie saw his expression AND what he had seen. ‘I wanna die now; can a hole open up in the floor and swallow me? Maybe Russell can just take the meeting.’
Instead of saying anything, Eric just suggested. “Yes, let’s move to a large table in the dining room. We all have notes to take and we’ll be more comfortable there.”
Sookie just gave him a shy smile as thanks, but Eric gave a proud and smug look in return.
Once in the dining room, Russell began the introductions, explaining that he had met everyone last night. “Eric Northman, Alcide Herveaux; may I introduce Sookie Merlotte?
They all exchanged handshakes and Sookie offered coffee or tea and the guests declined.
“Let’s get down to business,” suggested Russell.
Alcide proceeded to describe the film and the required a country setting, barn and farmhouse. Sookie’s property provided extra benefits with the acreage hidden by trees to accommodate RVs for the cast and crew. The filming schedule and other needs were discussed.
Eric tried to follow the discussion, but all he could do was picture the Sookie he saw dancing last night: the smile on her face, those hips moving to the beat.
He realized Alcide had been speaking to him. “I’m sorry, what?”
“I asked if you had anything additional to cover.”
Eric simply replied. “No.” At least I hope not.
Russell was positively giddy with the looks Eric was giving Sookie, certain that he wasn’t even able to listen to the conversation. He already knew Sookie was a fan of Eric’s. Well, they both drooled over some of the magazine articles that featured Eric. Sookie had experienced so much pain in the past few years; she deserved something fun for herself. Honestly, Russell even thought a fling would be good for her – but that would never do for Sookie. She felt responsible for the world and would never risk the fallout from a fling. Russell decided he would just push this situation as best he could. Perhaps a chat with Alcide when he could take him aside would be a good next step. He didn’t want Sookie to get hurt, and hoped that Alcide could offer some insight.
The group decided to take a short break then walk the property to review some areas in more detail.
Russell pulled Alcide aside to chat. “I see the way Eric is looking at Sookie. She is a very good friend, should I be worried or excited?”
Alcide could only offer that he was confused for two reasons, “Russell, I don’t understand, is Sookie married or single; we heard about her two daughters last night. Secondly, Eric has NEVER appeared to be infatuated like this. I can only promise to keep an eye on the situation.”
“Sookie is a widow. She lost her husband Sam about 3 years ago. Financially she is fine. Sam and his cousin Bill Compton created InnKeeper: a software system for tracking reservations, fees and special requirements for small establishments. Now Sookie and Bill share ownership of the company. She has not dated since Sam passed away. I have tried to encourage it and she has had suitors, including Bill. She has no interest in Bill but that does not stop him.” Russell didn’t mention the fact that he knew Sookie already found Eric Northman, the actor, attractive. Lord knows the two of them watched his films many times over the years. He also knew that physical attraction was only part of a relationship for Sookie and she would not tolerate dating a ‘jerk’ as she referred to some of her prior, yet unsuccessful, suitors.
Seeing Eric returning, Alcide quickly moved the discussion to the tour of the property.
They started with the house itself. Eric and Alcide would film as much as they could on location, but certain rooms were planned for replication in the studio. The current office was a problem since it was the former dining room. The dining room used by the B&B guests needed to be large, so it was part of the new construction that occurred when the B&B was opened. Careful filming would hide the new construction from the outside, but this new dining room was out of place in the farmhouse as they envisioned for the movie. This concern was added to the list as a discussion point.
The kitchen was workable. Most of the original farmhouse kitchen look remained and the more commercial equipment needed to run the B&B was all on one side. The living room was also fine as it was currently decorated. Some of the books on the shelves would need to be hidden since they were published after the time period for the movie.
The B&B had ample bedrooms decorated in various styles that would work well with the film. For the movie, any kids rooms would need twin beds to replace the queen beds in a guest room. The film crew would make the furniture moves when filming required.
Once the interior was complete, Sookie suggested the group break for lunch. She had prepared homemade beef vegetable soup and bread with brown sugar cookies for dessert. Eric and Alcide both smiled wide to each other when they realized the heavenly smell from the kitchen was lunch, for them!
Sookie went to the kitchen and Russell followed to start carrying the food out. Since the dining room held several tables, Sookie had already set one of them for lunch. Russell started in a sing song voice, “you like him. You can’t keep your eyes off each other.”
“Hush Russell, are you plumb crazy, you know what a manwhore he is. Gorgeous or not I don’t have a place in my life for a meaningless affair.”
“Sookie, I can see your mutual attraction, be cautious but don’t close yourself off completely, please?”
Sookie simply nodded in reply.
Back in the dining room, the four tucked in for lunch and started some friendly chatter.
Eric asked, “So, we were supposed to meet with a Susannah Merlotte today?
“Sookie was a nickname from my childhood in Louisiana that followed me to Pennsylvania. My hometown is Bon Temps, Louisiana, hence the name of the B&B. My husband, Sam, and I moved after my Gran passed ’bout 7 years ago. I have a brother still in Bon Temps, but no other family there. Sam’s parents, and Aunt and Uncle live near here. His cousin, Bill, who you probably saw, but did not officially meet, moved with us from Bon Temps. He and Sam were in the service together and I met Sam before they were discharged. He and Bill moved to Monroe and opened a bar together.”
Eric considered all that Sookie had just said. ‘She did not say late husband, but then Bill mentioned that her husband wanted Bill to take care of her. I wonder if can get some information from Russell.’
Alcide observed, “You have a southern accent, but don’t completely talk ‘southern’ Sookie.”
Russell laughed as he answered for Sookie, “Alcide, don’t get her fired up. She’ll ‘jerk your tail in a knot’ or something equally horrid.”
Gasping as Sookie replied, “Dang Russell, I thought you were my friend.”
“I am, but you’re funny when you get going.”
Alcide explained that he was originally from Jackson, Mississippi and his family was still there. He had visited Shreveport a few times but never her home town of Bon Temps. She and Alcide shared a few memories of growing up ‘southern’. Good manners and respect for your family were required. Alcide also suggested that Sookie’s cooking skills were from her southern upbringing.
She confirmed, “My Gran raised me, and you can believe she taught me all I know. Many of my breakfasts come straight from her recipes, but I’ve adapted to a broader-than-southern offering. Even if the recipes are not hers, the concept of fresh foods, scratch cookin’ where possible, and love are universal to good food.”
The gentlemen agreed as they shoveled in more soup and bread.
Once the main meal was eaten, she shared the cookie plate and offered hot tea, coffee or milk. They again dug into their cookies and were surprised.
“I was waitin’ for that look,” Sookie said, “the salt on the cookies always perplexes some.”
“Yes, but now that I’ve tasted it, I can see it balances out the sweet from the brown sugar,” Eric offered.
Just then, Eric received a text from Pam:
P: How is the tour?
E: Leave me alone, I’m eating.
P: Honestly Eric, can you focus on work?
E: The tour is fine, we just finished the house, and before moving to tour the barn we are eating lunch.
P: Don’t get fat eating all that shoo-fly Pie! I need you to fit into your jeans when you get home for a photo shoot next week!
E: We are walking the property later, I’ll work it off. Now go away, I’m trying to enjoy myself here.
P: I thought you hated your trip?
Eric turned the sounds on his phone off so he could enjoy the cookies and the company.
He turned to Russell, “So tell me about your dance lessons.”
“Well,” Russell started, “it’s simple enough. I wanted to learn, Bart did not and Sookie did. So we took lessons. We started at the local high school, once a week on basic ballroom dancing.”
“The instructor loved us and suggested more advanced classes.” Sookie finished. “Now we dance the Latin dances too. We even started takin’ the kids, and they dance like little Flatleys.”
“Yes, we saw that last night,” Alcide added.
“Right, I forgot you were there to see the girls dance.”
“Now, I believe Sookie hosts the dinner and open mic night as an excuse to have a dance floor”, said Russell and added, “not that I mind at all.”
Sookie laughed, “You’re right Russell; there aren’t really other options in town.”
Russell had copies of generic film location contracts in hand after lunch and bid them farewell. He would be back on Friday with comments. Sookie, Eric and Alcide continued their chat while they headed out to review the remainder of the property. “Sorry about the mixed state of holiday decorations here. I close down for a few weeks in November so I can complete the Christmas Decorations. The lower level of the barn is pretty much a mess while I put away the autumn stuff.” They entered the lower barn level and holiday decorations were everywhere.
“Sookie, for the film, we would need the lower level cleared out for animals. We can add moving and temporary storage to the contract.”
“Animals?” Sookie exclaimed. “I’m gonna have farm animals?”
“Yes”, Alcide replied, “but not for the whole four months, we will minimize the time they’re here.”
“Uh oh”, Sookie thought out loud; “I think once any animals arrive, the kids will never want them to leave.”
“So,” Eric asked, “you’ll want to keep them?”
“I sure as hell did not say that!”
Laughing, they all continued to the acreage behind the large trees. Eric and Alcide hoped to place all the RVs in this space, after adding the appropriate RV services. Eric shared his concerns about the amenities for the cast and crew. “Sookie, our cast and crew are accustomed to staying in the luxury RVs we are supplying for the property; my concern is the town itself. I fear many will be bored with the entertainment options in such a small town. We asked around a bit last night, and frankly are still concerned. Are there any other options that may have been missed, besides the ice cream social and weekend church BBQs?”
Eric’s face showed disdain while he spoke and it pissed Sookie off. “Hey. Y’all came to this small town for your film, and now yer criticizin’ the town and the fokes who live here? If y’all cain’t make it here for 4 months that is y’alls problem, not mine. Daaum. Let’s get back to work on the details of the site prep inside since it is getting’ colder out here.”
Alcide whispered to Eric on the way back, “That went well, do you have any other thoughts you can say to piss her off?”
“Sookie,” Eric called to her, “I apologize, I was merely looking for suggestions; it wasn’t my intention to insult your town.”
Sookie took a breath to calm down and replied, “Eric, that may be true, but your lack of desire to be here makes you appear snobbish. This small town is not just a zip code. It’s a community of people who know and help each other. You might want to remember that when speakin’ to the folks around here.”
Eric acknowledged the comments with a nod.
Once back from their tour of the property, Sookie inquired about other properties they were evaluating causing confused looks between Alcide and Eric.
When they didn’t answer, Sookie explained her question. “You aren’t staying here, so I assumed you were staying at another B&B?”
Eric and Alcide sheepishly explained that they were only investigating her property and they were staying at Orange heaven.
“THE HOLIDAY INN?!” Sookie laughed, “Good God Almighty, you are not! Pack your bags, you can move in today since you need to be here every day anyway. I don’t have weekday guests, so you get your pick of rooms. Dinner is at 6PM tonight.
Alcide and Eric were staring at each other again like deer in headlights. Yes, it was starting to be a pattern.
But they did not need to be told again. They were back with bags in hand within 30 minutes and were in the kitchen to discuss next steps. Eric and Alcide were pleased with the location and minimal work needed to use the house, barn and land in the film. Several contractors would need to be hired to arrange for electric and sewer for the RVs as well as some minor fix-ups for the barn. Alcide started explaining that Bobby would work with contractors to get bids for the work needed. He and Eric could finalize their selection from LA, and include the contractors in the January meetings to complete contracts. The contractors could start work in January to be ready by March when Eric, Alcide and several other crew members would be in for location preparation before filming.
Now it was Sookie who was confused. “I can call the electrician and plumber right now, and they can be here tomorrow to review the work. Why go back and forth via email and fax from LA?” She paused but her ire was rising and she added a hand to her hip, “Y’all do realize that I can hire contractors, right? I done bought this place in shambles and with contractors I hired and my own elbow grease turned it into this B&B.”
Eric noticed two things: 1) she didn’t mention her husband working on the B he needed to know more about that. AND 2) she was getting upset, and while Eric liked a good argument; he needed to get this under control. “Sookie, we’re not suggesting you do not have the skills, we had always planned to complete the work through the film company.”
“I know the changes are for YOUR film, but it’s still MY property, and I’ll have to live with the work that is permanent!” Did they really think so little of her or how she felt about this B&B she worked so hard to create? Jerks!
“Sookie, we were only trying to help by not adding to your already busy life.” Eric said while the school bus stopped and dropped off Sookie’s girls. That timing was in his favor.
Suddenly, Sookie’s argument was deflated. She did still believe she could work easily through the contractor decisions, but she had misread their intentions.
The girls came bounding into the kitchen and stopped. The younger one said “Mama, we have his picture on your PC!”
Sookie turned red and thought ‘I want a hole to swallow me now.’
Sookie turned to introduce the girls, “This is Eleanor and this is Maura. Eleanor and Maura, these gentlemen, Mr. Northman and Mr. Herveaux, will be staying with us for the next few days.’
Alcide knelt down to ask, “How old are you lovely ladies?”
Maura, being older said, “I’m 7 and Eleanor is 5. Mr. Herveaux, would you like to help me with my math?”
Sookie stepped in, “Girls, I should have been clearer, they are here to work. No botherin’ them, got it?” Now, off you go to start your reading. Maura, I’ll join you in the office in about 20 minutes to help with your math.”
Both girls mumbled “Yes mama.”
Alcide looked at Maura and gave her a wink while mouthing later. She left with a grin on her face.
Once the girls left, Sookie returned to the prior conversation, a bit calmer, and simply expressed that she already has contractors she uses for any electrical and plumbing work. They worked on the B&B before, were fair and did quality work. She suggested that their fastest path to understand the extent and costs of the requirements would be for her to call them to meet while Eric and Alcide were still here. They agreed so she called them to schedule the time.
Sookie then took Eric and Alcide to the guest rooms. They both selected a room and settled in. Once Sookie was gone, they met in Eric’s room to review their status. Eric started “So we have our main filming location, we identified the gaps and are meeting with the contractors to remedy those gaps,”
“And,” Alcide interrupted, “you found a fan girl that YOU couldn’t keep your eyes off of last night and again today. Care to discuss?”
“I did speak to Russell a bit about Sookie. I just thought you might be interested.” Eric remained silent, but stared a hole through Alcide’s head, so he continued. “She is NOT married. Her husband died three years ago. She has not dated since. With the looks you’re giving her, I know you’re attracted. Eric, she is not a one-night stand kind of girl. So you need to wrap your head around your obvious infatuation before you do anything to fuck with her or our film.” And with that, Alcide headed back to the office to help someone with math.
Eric was dumbfounded. He was a movie star and could have any woman at any time. He wasn’t infatuated with someone after one day, was he? He did not do girlfriends (well, once and that ended badly), he did not do infatuation – he was the one that women were infatuated with. No, Alcide was wrong. He could certainly look and enjoy a view without being accused of infatuation. He was Eric Northman, dammit; women called him sex on a stick. He would be home next week and only back for business and the filming. At that point, he would be so busy this would no longer be a problem. He left his room for the kitchen so he would not be late for dinner, he was just being courteous – that’s all.
Alcide helped Maura with math while Sookie finished dinner. They had moved from the office to the kitchen so Sookie could answer Alcide’s questions about math – ‘how could addition and subtraction have changed so much since he was in school,’ Alcide wondered.
Soon, dinner was on the table and smelled wonderful. Roast chicken and potatoes with steamed broccoli. Eric was puzzled by his feelings. He and Pam had grown up as with nannies and tutors since their parents were always traveling for their acting careers. Family dinner was foreign to him.
The girls giggled at Alcide’s antics. He had the ability to mimic several of their favorite Disney characters. They also discussed their busy day at school. Eleanor was in Kindergarten and today they had art; evidenced by the splatter of paint on her shirt. They had started a surprise for Christmas next month. Eric laughed to himself; ‘it’s not really a surprise anymore.’ Maura was in second grade and the teacher was currently reading Mr. Popper’s Penguins. She was fascinated by the idea of having a penguins as a pet, since they had never had any pets. The last part of the sentence was spoken with a pout. Eric and Sookie made eye contact and she mouthed – farm animals – and Eric realized she may actually be stuck with a cow and goats after the filming was complete.
Shortly after dinner, Sookie took the girls to their private quarters to get baths and go to bed. Alcide and Eric decided to relax in the living room. This room was for guests and contained a variety of books and films on DVD. A book on the coffee table captured Eric’s eye – it was a scrapbook of the renovations to the B&B. It detailed in photos and stories the initial state of the farmhouse, barn, and overgrown gardens. It progressed through the clean-up and additions making it the spectacular B&B it was now. All through the book, pictures of Sookie working on the yard, hanging drywall, painting, demolishing and more were proof that she was more than capable of handing the contractors. Eric almost felt guilty for Alcide’s and his assumptions – almost.
Sookie returned and the three settled in for tea and more cookies. “Maria-Starr is going to have my ass when I get back,” Eric grumbled.
A wave of jealousy went through Sookie. ‘Maria Starr, who is that?’ she wondered to herself.
Eric noticed that Sookie’s face pinched up after his comment. Then he realized what that meant. ‘She is jealous. Oh I can work with this now. I knew she would eventually start to cave in to HER infatuation with ME.’
Alcide saw Eric’s smirk and quickly clarified the situation. “Maria-Starr is my girlfriend and she also happens to be the photographer doing a photo shoot on Eric next week. Eric is just worried about fitting into his jeans with all the good food you’ve been serving.”
“Well Eric, you can join me for a run tomorrow morning if you want.”
“6AM, meet you on the front porch.”
Alcide’s phone rang and he stepped outside to answer it.
Since they were alone, Sookie she felt the need to come clean about the magazine Eric saw in her office. “Eric, I know you saw the GQ magazine in my office, I reckon I should explain.”
“Sookie.” Eric purred as he moved closer to her on the couch, “there is no need to explain. I do those magazines to promote my movie work, I understand they’re bought by many fans and it’s all part of the promotion plan. I’m aware that my looks are used to sell the magazines and quite frankly I’m pleased to find that you’re a fan since we will be working so closely together in the coming months.” He emphasized his final words by stroking her cheek and putting on a smoldering look.
Is he coming on to me? OK, so maybe I’m a fan, but that does not make me like some of the women who scream and fall at his feet begging for attention. JERK! “Eric,” she started, trying to stay calm, but losing that battle “I think you misunderstand the difference between bein’ a fan and enjoyin’ your films and yes, admittedly your good looks and bein’ one of the Hollywood fan girls that will drop their pants for you at your whim. Perhaps we should just focus on keepin’ our relationship professional for now.”
Eric was infuriated by her comments, even if there was a hint of accuracy. He was also unsure how to handle rejection. He wanted to start shouting back that she didn’t know anything about him. That she had no right judge him. He wanted to grab her and kiss her and show her what she was missing, but he decided to just nod for now and remained silent.
Alcide returned shortly after and Sookie excused herself for the night.
Once in bed, Sookie pondered the day. ‘I’m a fan of Eric Northman, and here he was, sleeping in my house. I should be excited about that, right? Instead, I’m just frustrated. How could he be nice one minute, then a jerk the next? I want to kiss him, I want to slap him. I just don’t know which I want to do more. Well, he would be gone in a week, then back only for work. Hopefully the film will occupy most of his time. I just need to avoid being alone with him until he leaves, then I can just forget about all this frustration. Yes, I’ll use Alcide as a buffer as much as possible over the next week.’
Meanwhile, Eric was in bed after checking on emails. ‘She rejected my advances? That never happens. Sookie is different than any of the women I have dated/fucked. I’ll try a different tactic tomorrow. Why do I even care so much?’
At 5:55 AM, Eric was on the porch in a very tight running outfit waiting for Sookie. She walked out and was surprised to see him there. She figured her comments about a working relationship would have given him a clue. She had to admit she really liked the view, and her lady bits did as well. She had not felt lust like this since her husband died. If she was really honest with herself, even with Sam, it had been a while she had these physical reactions to a man. If only she could stop some of the stupid crap that came out of his mouth. ‘Maybe I can just use duct tape on his mouth? No, how can I kiss him then? Why am I thinking that? Oh hell.’
She was lost in her thoughts when Eric started right away, “Sookie, I apologize for my actions last night. Can we wipe the slate clean and be friends? I do find you attractive, but I won’t make any unwanted advances.” He’d decided this was the best way to start with Sookie.
Sookie, ever the polite Southern Lady (even if she had been transplanted to the north) agreed, and they started their run.
Eric’s plan was to start out together and at certain times ensure he was in front of Sookie so she could get a view of his ‘world class ass’ as he had heard many swooning fans refer to it. No such luck. Sookie knew the trail, and was relentless in keeping the faster pace. ‘At least now I know why she can eat the cookies and still have the stunning figure.’
They returned to the B&B at about 7, and Sookie started rallying the girls for their day. She had informed Alcide and Eric that breakfast would be at 9AM, since she needed to get the girls on the bus before they could eat.
Sookie, determined to keep things all business, grabbed the site maps and added them to the table as she set it for breakfast. Breakfast was on the buffet when Alcide and Eric entered the room. Once seated, Sookie explained the contractors were arriving at 10AM, and she suggested they type out their notes for the requirements to provide both of them. They added to the notes and when Sookie finished breakfast, she went to the office to type the lists. Alcide offered to clear breakfast for her since they were trying to get everything done before 10. Sookie returned, shared the lists then explained she was changing for the meeting. She needed something warmer for the length of time they were planning to stay outside with the contractors.
Sookie returned when the contractors drove up. She was wearing Carhartts. ‘At least,’ Eric thought, ‘maybe that vision will get her out of my thoughts.’
When Sookie noticed Eric was staring at her, she shrugged shoulders and said, “What? We are going to be out there for a while; it’s cold and these are lined. You should know how to dress for cold weather.”
“You know, I may have to take a picture of you for Pam, my stylist. I don’t care if it keeps you warm, that outfit is horrible. I’m from Sweden; I know how to dress for cold. Had I packed for cold, you would see that my version is much more stylish than that. I just don’t think it’s that cold out here.”
“You asshole! Where do you get off makin’ judgments about my outfits? We may not have snow here like your Sweden, but this is bone chilin’ cold, you’ll see.” This man just infuriated her!
Eric could only laugh. Oh, how he was starting to enjoy pushing her buttons!
With a huff, Sookie led them out and introduced the contractors, Doug and Peter. As a group, they headed out to the planned RV area. The contractors reviewed the site, took measurements and noted the requirements in detail. It took longer than Eric and Alcide expected, and guess what, they were cold. Luckily, Eric thought to snap a picture of Sookie in her outfit before his hands started to freeze. Damn, insufferably right woman!
Once they were done, they headed back to the house for a late lunch and a review of the plans. The contractors were planning to leave after lunch to start working on the preliminary bids and would be back tomorrow to review more details. Once the meetings were over, Sookie headed outside to continue with the Christmas decorations. She was pleasantly surprised when Alcide and Eric joined her to help. She had to guide them through the specifics, but they actually completed all the outside decorations by the time the girls arrived home from school. Sookie prepared an early supper for the girls since they had church school that night. While the girls were at church, Sookie, Eric and Alcide shared a light supper as Alcide told stories of Eric’s antics in Hollywood. They got so wrapped up in laughing at the stories Sookie forgot the time and quickly stood to collect the girls at church.
“Would you like some company?” Eric asked.
“Um, sure, let me grab my coat, I’ll meet you at the car.”
Alcide glared at Eric conveying his warning with a look. Eric simply put on his best innocent face, which looked horribly guilty and walked to his room to get his coat.
Eric behaved and simply asked about the scrapbook on the B&B. Sookie described her dream of owning a B&B and finally purchasing the property she had eyed for years. She was lucky to have friends in the community, an architect, contractors, and other folks she could trust to help her with the endeavor. They quickly arrived at the church.
Sookie collected the girls and returned to the B&B with Maura and Eleanor asking Eric question after question about being in movies, living in California, and being in magazines. Eric tried to answer their rapid fire questions as best he could. They were home quickly; Sookie said her good nights and left for their private quarters.
Friday morning brought more of the same; requirements review, bid discussions with the contractors and additional walks of the property. Sookie shared her time between the contractor meetings, finalizing the indoor holiday decorations and her work on InnKeeper.
Shortly after lunch, she had completed her work for InnKeeper and was meeting with Eric, Alcide and the contractors. Additional assessments on the work needed for the filming were planned for the next week while Eric and Alcide were still there to make any final decisions.
Alcide corrected the comment about both he and Eric being there next week. “Actually, Sookie, I depart on Monday, and Eric will be here to finalize the plans. I have a meeting with the studio on Tuesday, so we felt this was the best way to attend the meeting AND get the work done here with the contractors.”
Eric smirked while Sookie’s eyes went wide. ‘Oh my God, I’m going to be alone here next week with Eric for hours each day while the kids are in school.’
While still in her stupor about the news, a voice boomed from the front hall. “SOOKEH! What in the hell are all these people doing here? You promised me you would work on InnKeeper today since your silly movie meetings have taken up the past two days!”
Great, Bill. Just when she thought things could not get worse.