As she stared at Jason and Lafayette, Sookie struggled over what to tell them. She knew they both deserved the truth, and nothing but the truth, but that was easier said than done. How was she supposed to tell her brother, the boy she had grown up with, the one who had taught her how to ride a bike, and defended her when the kids at school teased her, that she really wasn’t his baby sister? That she was, instead, the oldest vampire in existence. How was she supposed to explain to him that she was so old she had forgotten her actual age? There was no real justification she could give him that would be logical. Nothing she said would ever truly explain her reasons.
“Sook, what’s goin’ on?” Lafayette asked, finally regaining his voice. He could see there was something different about her, more than just the set of fangs, but he was unsure just what it was. She looked lighter, as if the albatross that had been round her neck for years was gone, but at the same time, there was a look in her eyes that spoke of an ancient being. As he stared at her, Lafayette realized one thing that was different. For the first time since they had met, Sookie looked comfortable in her own skin. She was at ease.
Sookie let out an unneeded breath and retracted her fangs before dropping down on the sofa in her living room. “It’s a long story,” she said when she gazed up at her brother and the man she realized was her true best friend. “It’s not going to be easy to hear, and you probably won’t believe it, but I need you to hear me out. Can you do that?”
Jason exchanged a look with Lafayette before nodding his head and taking a seat opposite Sookie. Just as their flamboyant friend, Jason could see the differences in Sookie, and he wanted to know what had caused them. The news he had heard from Hadley could wait until later. There was nothing he could do about that anyway. Jason had to prioritize and, right then, Sookie came first.
Sookie waited for Lafayette to take a seat on the sofa beside Jason before opening her mouth and letting her words spill out. Her voice was steady as she explained about Lilith, vampires, fairies, and angels. She held little back as she told them about the ritual she had done twenty-eight years earlier, and how she had chosen the Stackhouse family to be reborn into and why. She pushed through as she saw the skepticism written all over their faces, attempting to give them reasons for everything she had done.
Jason stared at Sookie in shock, not quite sure if he believed the tale she was telling. He could see she believed it, but the story went against everything he knew, or thought he knew. Sookie wasn’t the oldest and most powerful vampire in the world; she was his baby sister. She was the little girl he had sworn to protect, and then done an awful job of it.
For the second time that night, Lafayette was speechless. Out of all the things he was expecting her to say, what she just said had never even registered on the list. He was half-expecting her to tell them that Bill had turned her in his desperate desire to bind her to his side. Lafayette had been ready to stake the fucker and free Sookie from his grasp; now he didn’t know what to do or say. What did you say when one of your best friends, if not the best, told you she was the daughter of the first vampire? “Scuse my bluntness ‘ere, hookah,” Lafayette began, his tone bordering on incredulous. “But, are yous fo fuckin’ real? Yous is thousanz of yeaz old. Well, damn! Yous lookin’ good fo yous age, baby girl!”
Sookie couldn’t help but laugh at Lafayette’s words, and, for the first time since she had explained who and what she was, she felt a modicum of hope that she wouldn’t lose her best friend. She had no doubt she would lose some of her other friends. She didn’t think for one minute Sam or Alcide would take the news well or even accept it. They had an unnatural hatred for vampires. She might have been able to understand their feelings if vampires had victimized them, but as far as Sookie could tell; Alcide and Sam hated vampires because they wouldn’t clean up their messes for free. Alcide also blamed vampires for Debbie’s many problems. It didn’t matter that the Werebitch had been weak and slightly psychotic. It hadn’t been Russell’s blood that made Debbie the way she had been, it had been all her. Sookie was happy she didn’t have to deal with Debbie anymore, although, Alcide might not be as happy once he found out what happened to his ex-girlfriend. However, both Alcide and Sam could wait; Jason was the only one Sookie cared about. It was his acceptance that she needed. He was her brother, regardless of her new memories.
“I don’t know what t’ say, Sook,” Jason confessed, pained to even admit it. What was the proper response to hearing your baby sister was, in fact, an ancient vampire? Congratulations… Fuck that… Jason had no clue what to think or feel. His entire world had just been turned upside down. After hearing that a vampire had killed his parents, he had been ready to hate them all; now he wasn’t sure he could. His sister was a vampire… And she was; she was His Sister. Nothing and no one would ever change that. She might have been older than dirt, but to him she was still his baby sister. Still, knowing and feeling all that even now didn’t make it easier for him to know what to say. Try as he might, Jason couldn’t find the words he needed to express himself.
“Tell me you don’t hate me,” Sookie replied needing desperately to know he was still her brother. She could take everyone else turning against her, but not him. He was just as much her blood as Warlow or Roman. He was family.
“I don’t hate ya, Sook,” Jason said truthfully, giving her a small smile. “I’m confused as Hell and don’t know which way is up and which is down, but you’re still my sister…”
Sookie let out a sigh of relief, bolstered by Jason. It wasn’t until she was faced with losing her brother did she truly realize how afraid she had been. Jason might not have been her only brother, but he was her true brother, her real brother. Their relationship was very different from the blood ties she had with other vampires.
“… I’m probably gonna need some time t’ get my head ‘round it all,” Jason continued. That was the understatement of the century. It wasn’t an easy thing to accept, added on to the news that Hadley had told him, and Jason thought his head might explode. “Is that why a vamp killed Momma and Daddy?” He asked without thought. Jason didn’t see Sookie wince or hear Lafayette let out a breath. He clutched onto the idea and ran with it. “Could that vampire known who ya were and was tryin’ t’ kill ya?”
“Jason, you don’t know for a fact that a vampire killed them,” Sookie replied trying to remain levelheaded. She didn’t care for being accused, even in a roundabout way, of having been responsible for her human parent’s deaths. Nevertheless, she found it suspicious that Hadley would learn of Corbett and Michelle’s suspected murders, go to work at a fairy club, and then run into Jason only to tell him all about it. “All you have is Hadley’s word, and she was never the most truthful or objective person around.”
“Ya sayin’ she was lyin’?” Jason asked as he leaned back on the sofa. “Why’d she do that? She said the fairies told her…”
“And did she say how they knew?” Sookie countered. She could feel her fangs itching in her gums and she wanted nothing more than to let them drop and sink them into a fairy. It was just a shame there were none around at present. It had been far too long since she dined on fairy blood. “Vampires and fairies don’t mix, Jason. We are natural enemies. Fairies avoid us at all costs. They ain’t gonna show up, and then stick around while a vampire kills humans. Even if they did, the vampire would turn on the fairy, and forget all about the humans. So if a fairy knew a vampire killed our parents, it means they were there and did nothing…”
“Why would they do that?” Jason asked. He wasn’t sure why, but he desperately wanted to believe a vampire killed his parents. He wanted to hate them all, he wanted to blame them. Even more than that, he needed to. It was as if there was something inside him demanding that he hold vampires accountable for every little problem that plagued his life, whether or not they were responsible for them. It was almost as if he had developed an unnatural hatred for the Undead, a hatred he couldn’t explain. He might not have been the most accepting of men in the past, but he had gotten past that. He had seen the errors of his ways, and realized that not all vampires were evil. “A deader killed our parents, Sook. Hadley told me. She knew. You just don’t wanna believe it cause ya’re a vamp yaself! The fairies warned Hadley ‘bout…”
“No, Jason, I don’t believe it cause there’s no proof it’s true!” Sookie countered as she rose to her feet. “I mean, did they show you any proof? Did they tell you who the vampire was?”
“Yes!” Jason shouted, jumping to his feet and glaring at Sookie. “I went back to their club this afternoon and they told me. A fairy named Claude told me a vampire called Warlow killed them…”
“Warlow?” Sookie repeated, a look of shock flashing across her face as she backed up. Of all the things she had expected to hear, that was the last. She refused to believe it. Oh, Sookie knew he was more than capable. The two of them had spent countless years letting their vampires run free and revelling in the destruction they caused. However, that had been thousands of years ago; neither of them embraced the darkness as they once did.
“You knows dis Warlow?” Lafayette asked as he stepped forward, and pushed Jason back. He wasn’t a hundred percent sure what was going on, but he knew better than to get in a vampire’s face while emotions were running high. Lafayette didn’t think Jason really understood the change in his sister; if he did, he wouldn’t be acting as aggressively around her.
“I do,” Sookie admitted while she flicked her eyes between her brother and friend. “I’ve known him for a long, long time, although I’ve not seen him for a while.”
“Who is he?” Jason asked his tone forceful as he demanded the truth. He wanted to know all there was to know about the vicious bloodsucker that killed his parents.
“He’s my brother,” Sookie answered truthfully. She wouldn’t lie about his identity or pretend she didn’t know him. Warlow was an important part of her life, or he had been before she became human. They were the children of Lilith; there was no closer bond.
“No, Sook, I’m ya brother,” Jason replied, not quite understanding what she was saying.
“My vampire brother,” Sookie clarified, meeting Jason’s eyes. “We share the same Maker.”
Jason stared at Sookie in shock as he stumbled backward, putting as much distance between them as possible. The dark voices in his head were whispering at him that she was responsible for his parent’s death. Warlow was her brother; he was tied to her; that had to mean it was Sookie’s fault. Jason grabbed his head as he tried to silence the voices. He felt as if he was being torn in two. One part of him desperately wanted to believe it was all Sookie’s fault… No; not Sookie’s, the vampire’s fault, the bloodsucker who wore his sister’s face was to blame.
Only, she’s not your sister, is she, son? A little voice whispered to him that sounded exactly like his long-dead momma’s. She’s nothing but a dirty, murdering, vampire, Jason. She’s not family. She’s one of them.
A gasp of surprise escaped Sookie’s lips as she heard the voice of her human mother inside Jason’s head. She could hear how she was riling Jason up and trying to make him turn against her. “Jason, how long have you been hearing Momma?” Sookie asked, stepping closer to him.
“Get outta my head, Sook!” Jason shouted as he backed up further. A crazed look entered his eyes as he yanked on his hair. “She wasn’t your Momma, she was mine. My Momma!”
Sookie stepped closer to Jason, making him back up more. It was easy to see something was wrong with him; he was acting more strangely than usual. “Jason,” she said softly, drawing his attention. She smiled at him as she caught his eyes and pressed her mind against his. She felt a flicker of guilt wash over her as she attempted to glamour her brother, but she needed to know what the hell had happened to him. Sookie’s eyes widened in shock as she came up against a block in Jason’s head, preventing her from delving deeper into his mind. The shock of the mental block caused her glamour to slip and, before she had a chance to react, Jason pushed her out of the way, and bolted for the door.
“Jason!” Sookie shouted as she saw him wrench the door open and race through it. “Fuck!” She swore as she ran onto the porch. She knew she could easily catch him if she wanted, but given the way he was acting, Sookie wasn’t sure dragging him back to the house was the best idea. She stood on the porch and watched as he jumped into his truck and drove off. “Thalia!”
Thalia appeared at the bottom of the porch steps before Sookie had even finished saying her name. “Yes, My Lady.”
“Follow my brother and make sure he comes to no harm,” Sookie ordered. “Stay out of sight and let me know if anything suspicious happens.”
The Greek vampire had heard everything that had transpired in the house, and knew better than to argue with Sookie. She might not have known Jason herself, but even Thalia could tell he was acting oddly. Thalia bowed to Sookie before speeding off after Jason’s truck.
“Aight, hookah, what be goin’ on?” Lafayette asked as he stepped onto the porch beside Sookie. “Yous be all old an’ powerful, an’ Jason be actin’ all kinds of crazy. Yous thinkin’ dis’ Warlow dude kilt’ ya Momma an’ Daddy?”
“It’s possible,” Sookie admitted as she moved to the porch swing and sat down. “He’s capable of it. We all are. Vampires are predators at nature, Lafayette. Killing is as natural to us as breathing is to you. If he did it, he did it for a reason. Warlow hasn’t killed indiscriminately in centuries…”
“What reason could he had t’ kill ya parents, Sook?” Lafayette asked, sitting down beside her. It had been a crazy few days, and Lafayette suspected it was only about to get crazier. He couldn’t think of one reason for a vampire to show up and kill the Stackhouses. He might have been young when they died, but he remembered enough about them to know they weren’t the kind of people who courted trouble. He didn’t want to think it was down to who their daughter was, but he couldn’t stop the thought entering his head.
“I don’t know,” Sookie admitted troubled. She knew what Lafayette was thinking, and even she couldn’t help but wonder if she was the reason for their deaths. Had they died because of her? All she had to go on were the crazy ramblings of Jason, who had gotten his information from Hadley, via the Fae. Sookie would never trust the Fae. They were skilled liars who had cost Sookie so much in her life. No, trusting the word of the Fae was something she would never do. However, there was someone whose word she would trust. She trusted her brother. She trusted Warlow. “But I intend to find out…”