25 Prisoners without Chains
"I'm so fucking tired of these cells!" I snapped as the guards tossed us into the last empty cell. The other two were occupied by the other vampires' dinner.
"We're fucked," Eric said.
"Bill won't let them kill us."
"Are you sure about that?" He asked.
I opened my mouth to defend Bill but then closed it and shook my head. "I don't know anymore." I glanced around and realized that Molly hadn't been brought into the room. "Where's the tech geek?"
"Probably facing judgment in the main chamber."
"They're going to kill her, aren't they? No matter what she says? That's our fault."
"She wanted out of here just as badly as we do. She knew the risk she was taking when she agreed to help."
"Your presence is required in the main chamber," one of the guards said opening the door to our cell. One of the men wrapped something around my eyes to prevent me from glamouring any of them. The guards grabbed us and led us down the hall. Bill was waiting inside when they opened the doors.
"The others want you both executed. They might be willing to be more lenient towards you, Lily. I can make the argument that you were under the compulsion of your maker," Bill said.
"I wasn't," I spit at him. "I don't want to be part of your insane new religion!" Bill pulled the blindfold so it fell around my neck but avoided my eyes so I couldn't do anything.
"Lilith will show us the way," Nora said.
"Lilith can suck my dick," I snapped. Nora looked a bit taken aback. I looked at Bill again, "You can't honestly expect me to listen to you, right?"
"I don't want you to listen to me. I want you to listen to Lilith." He removed a dropper from his pocket. Eric started struggling against the guard.
"No, I won't," Eric said.
"I'll do it with you," Nora said dropping to her knees next to him.
"Bill, are you crazy? In case you forgot, last time I took that I died," I said.
"And I'm very sorry it turned out this way but I'm afraid this is necessary for your survival." He forced my mouth open and made me take a drop from the dropper and then did the same to Eric. Bill walked out of the room, no doubt to watch on the security screens a safe distance from us. For a moment nothing happened and then a red light appeared. It was impossible to control my powers when I had Lilith's blood and I could hear voices in my head from all over the compound. I moaned and put my head in my hands trying to silence the noise.
"Godric," Eric whispered. I looked up quickly. The red light had been replaced with a man. Godric had met the true death before Rachel and I had come to Bon Temps so we had never met him. Rachel probably knew more about him than I did; Eric and I hadn't really gotten a chance to talk about his early life with all that had been happening since we'd gotten together.
"No!" Nora exclaimed. "How are you here?"
"My blood is in you, my children." He walked towards us and touched Nora's cheek. She shrank away from him. Godric moved past Eric and touched my face next. The voices filling my head suddenly grew quiet. "Eric's new progeny. You are a special one aren't you?"
"Am I?" I asked.
He smiled. "I think you know the answer to that."
"Where is Lilith?" Nora cried out.
"Lilith will destroy you," Godric said, turning his attention to his own progeny.
"She is our god!"
"Nora, shut up and listen to him," I snapped.
"Look at what you are doing to the world you live in. This is not right," Godric told her.
"Save her, she's lost," Eric said.
"No, I belong to Lilith!" She said. Her tone was beginning to border on hysteria. Another red light appeared and out of it stepped Lilith. Lilith walked up behind Godric and wrapped her arms around him.
"No, stop!" I yelled at her.
"I am not the one who must fight her," Godric said right before Lilith ripped his throat out. Nora and Eric screamed and I just stared as their maker was reduced to a pile of goo.
I looked straight into the security camera where I knew Bill would be watching. "You are as dead to me as he is to them," I said calmly.
Nora brought fresh clothes by my room, which I had been allowed to return to. "They want to see you and Eric."
"Alright," I said. I expected her to leave but instead she sat down on my bed. "Is there something else, Nora?"
"I was wrong. This is my fault."
"I don't blame you," I told her.
She looked at me. "But you hate me."
"I don't hate you; I just don't particularly like you very much. You're Eric's sister, so in a way I guess that sort of makes you my aunt. Family isn't supposed to get along, right?"
She smiled a tiny bit. "I guess that is true."
I put my hand on top of hers. "It doesn't matter what happened before, all that matters is what we do now." She nodded.
"Get changed, we should meet the others soon."
Eric and Bill met us outside the doors to the main chamber. I didn't look at Bill and he didn't say anything to me either. Eric and I walked through the doors with Bill and Nora following directly behind us.
"How are our prisoners?" Kibwe asked.
"No longer prisoners," Nora answered.
"We had a breakthrough with Northman," Bill said. I noticed that he left me off the list but he didn't call me out either. He was still trying to protect me. I still didn't understand what he was trying to accomplish here. Everyone had mental guards up now; Bill must have given them a lesson in shielding their minds from me while I was locked up. It made me feel blind and I hated it. I tried to look casual and not betray my unease. I was already distrusted and I had a very strong feeling that I wouldn't be given another chance if I messed up again.
Eric stepped forward and addressed the other vampires. "Lilith came to us and destroyed my maker. It is clear to me that I have been refusing to acknowledge what is right in front of me. I ask for the forgiveness of the Authority."
"And you Lily?" Salome prompted.
"I saw the same thing Eric did," I said, avoiding what she actually wanted me to say. Salome stared at me, waiting for me to continue. "Forgive me for-" I paused racking my brain for anything I could say that wouldn't be an outright lie. "Forgive me," I said. Ambiguous enough.
"Lily, there's someone here you might want to see," Bill said without really looking at me.
I wanted to refuse to go anywhere with him but I figured it would probably look suspicious so I nodded. We went out the doors into the lobby and stood in front of the elevator. Neither of us said a thing as we waited for it to descend to our level. When the doors finally slid open Jessica was inside flanked by two guards. "Bill what the fuck is going on?" She asked stepping out.
"Jess!" I said happily.
"Lily? Have you been here the whole time? When you and Bill disappeared I was seriously freaking out. Rachel said you would turn up but I wasn't sure. I mean last time Bill disappeared he almost died, and then there was the time Sookie disappeared and Rachel lost her memory and oh! I thought something terrible had happened." She threw her arms around me and hugged me. I laughed and hugged her back, I missed having her around. The two of us had barely spent any time together since the year before when Rachel was in Mississippi and Sookie was with the faeries.
"I'm fine, I promise," I told her. She took a step back and took a good long look at me like she didn't believe me. I smiled and popped my fangs out and she screamed.
"Holy shit! Who turned you?"
"Eric. It happened a few days ago. I'm a baby vamp now."
"You are so not the girl who moved to Bon Temps a couple of years ago."
"Lily, if you don't mind, I would like to speak with Jessica alone for a moment. I'm sure you girls will have plenty of time to catch up later."
"Yeah, I'll see you later Jess."
A couple of hours later we were all at a planning meeting. Jess was pacing while reading the Book of Lilith and looks incredibly irritated. "I don't know if you can hear me, but if you can please stake me. I can't take this vampire religion crap." Jess thought at my furiously. I turned my head towards her slightly and winked to let her know I could hear. It wasn't like it was a secret anymore but I also didn't want the other Authority members thinking I was hatching some grand scheme or something.
"I've ordered translations of the Book in seventy languages," Nora said. "Every new vampire will have to read it."
"And the old ones as well," Eric said.
"Is your boyfriend for real? Please tell me he hasn't drunk the Kool-Aid too." Jess glared at me from the other side of the room and I tried not to look at her. "You aren't falling for this are you? Aren't you agnostic or something? God I wish I could hear you think too!"
"How do you expect us to assume our rightful position in this world when we're out of commission for twelve hours of the day?" Russell asked.
"That is the way we were made," Kibwe said.
"But we don't have to stay that way. The blood of the fae allows vampires to walk in the sun. I propose we toss Lily out and see if she burns."
"Over my dead body," Eric said standing up.
"While that could be an interesting experiment, I don't think we should use Lily as our test subject," Salome told Russell.
"We would have people ready to cover her if she did in fact burn, but I don't think she would," Russell said. I had to admit there was a chance he was right. If what Nora suspected was true and somehow I hadn't been turned one hundred percent there was a chance I could still walk in the sun. Not that I would tell him that, I didn't want to be a guinea pig. "Well if that's out of the question then I supposed we could just find a full blooded faeire to study. If the Japanese could synthesize human blood why can't we do the same to faeire blood?"
"The fae are an abomination," Salome said. "We thrive in the night." Russell took a threatening step towards her. "I pulled you out of the ground, do not think I won't put you back in it," she said. He tossed her across the room into one of the pillars and the rest of us jumped to our feet, fangs bared.
"Oh please, all of you combined would not be a match for me," Russell said. "I offered to include you in the future but I do not need your gods or your rules. I will have the sun!" He disappeared from the room at vamp speed.
"I knew that was coming from the moment he supposedly discovered Lilith," I said. "Russell only cares about one thing and that is himself."
After Russell left everyone was a bit on edge. I had been sitting in my room alone for at least an hour and I was starting to feel like I was going to throw up. I drink a TruBlood from my hidden stash but it didn't help. I started down the hallway towards Eric's room when I heard a voice. "Lily," the voice called. I turned towards it and followed it towards the main chamber. "Lily Compton."
"Hello?" I called back.
"There can only be one to lead us, I choose you," the voice said. When I turned around Lilith was standing right in front of me.
I shook my head. "If you think I'm going to lead your cult of crazies, you're wrong."
"Drink the blood, drink all the blood. You will see."
"You're trying to turn us against each other aren't you? Godric was right, you will destroy us."
She disappeared and I turned back down the hall and ran into Eric's room. I threw the door open and he stopped moving suddenly, not more than a step away from me, he must have been pacing. "Are you alright?" He asked. He put his hands on my waist and drew me closer to him.
"I saw Lilith. She tried to convince me to drink her blood. Obviously I didn't," I told him. "Eric, I want to get out of here."
He leaned down pressing his forehead to mine. "We will, I promise."
A general was coming to meet with the Authority about the TruBlood factory attacks and Nora had made sure I was invited to the meeting. I sat in between her and Eric and waited for the man to arrive. "Who is he again?" I asked Nora.
"One of our interlocutors with the government," she answered.
"And he's coming here because he knows we blew up the factories," I confirmed.
"Most likely," Salome said from across the table. "And most likely he'll want to meet with Roman, who is unfortunately out of town on business."
"Code word for dead," I mumbled. Salome glared at me. The general walked in and stood at the head of the table.
"Where's Roman, we have important matters to discuss if any of you bloodsuckers want to be alive in the morning?" He asked.
"I'm afraid Roman isn't with us at this moment," Salome said calmly.
"I can see that. Where is he?"
"I'm sure we can help you," Nora said.
"I have been working with Roman for twenty years to protect vampires. We work towards mainstreaming and the bombing of the TruBlood factories was one step too far. Where's Roman?"
We all glanced at each other before Bill spoke up, "Roman is no longer with us." Nora launched into her perfect Lilith loving rant. She was very good at pretending she was still on their side, though Eric and I knew better.
"There are currently talks about how to eradicate vampires from the face of the Earth. We have video of Russell Edgington attacking and killing at least twenty college students. You all told the president Edgington was dead, how do you think the public would react to knowing that he's alive and well and slaughtering people?" None of the vampires said a thing and he nodded. "That's what I thought." He turned and walked towards the door but before he had a chance to leave Eric appeared in front of him and snapped his neck.
"Do you have any idea what you just did?" Salome asked jumping up.
"I'm glad the son of a bitch is dead," Rosalyn said.
"Lily and I can glamour anyone who knew about the video," Eric said.
"Yes, and I know the general's chief of staff," Nora added.
"If the three of us work quickly we'll have it done before anyone even knows he's dead," I added.
Salome nodded, convinced of our plan. "Go, take the jet. Keep me updated."
The three of us turned towards the door but Bill stopped us, "Take a security detail." I glanced back and met his eyes for the first time in two days. "Just in case."
I sat in the widow seat in the car and just stared out the window. I felt like I hadn't been above ground in years even though in reality it had only been a few days. My whole body was buzzing nervously because this was our chance to escape. I remained silent as Eric leaned forwards the change the radio station and then staked the two guards. As I got out of the car I breathed in a deep breath of fresh air. Even if I didn't need it, it felt good to take it in.
"They'll be coming after us," Nora said. She reached towards her neck and looped her fingers around the Authority necklace. I did the same and we yanked ours off at the same time and let them fall to the ground.
Eric put his arms around me. "Hold on," he said before launching into the air.