The Lemon Cart
A few weeks ago, Eric found a mysteriously wrapped parcel sitting on the hood of his car as he left Fangtasia.
As much as he was looking forward to the end of his contract, and being allowed to ride off into the sunset once the Creator was finished with him, it didn’t seem as though he would be given any leeway with his future. He actually stood in the parking lot, skimming the book to realize he’d been locked into what equated to a prison sentence until Sookie called him. Before he had the chance to greet her, she started, “Oh, hell no…”
Bringing us to the present…
Eric was almost shocked to see Pam’s name on his Caller ID.
It had been nearly a week since they’d been in contact. He would have worried, but sensing she was well, worrying about her would have wasted his valuable time.
They’d had a very long discussion and divided the work that needed to be done. While Eric and Sookie remained in Bon Temps with their team, Pam was sent to the west coast for her chores.
Before Eric could greet her, Pam blurted, “Eric, we need to talk.”
“I think I said the same thing when I called you a few nights ago. I need your help…”
Pam took the phone from her ear to make sure she called the right number. Eric never asked for help.
“I thought you had help.”
“Yes. ‘Had’ being the operative word.”
Pam’s eyes rolled and she shook her head. “You’ve got to be kidding me, Eric. How fucking hard is it to just read? We have to find a ghostwriter for that bitch’s epilogue. That coda is the last chance we’ve got.”
“Alcide became frustrated and assigned himself to reading the ‘All Human’ stories. He claimed it was ‘just a way to split the work’, but Sookie said he was sick of reading about himself with Debbie.”
“Boooo fucking hoooo… no one told him to start riding that lunatic in the first place. What about Bill?”
“Bill found a more annoying way to express his frustrations. That…”
Sookie offered from the other side of her kitchen table, “Douche BAG!”
Eric nodded, completely agreeing with Sookie’s suggestion. “Yes. That’ll do. That douche bag stormed out, fed up with being portrayed as a ‘witless, conniving antagonist’. He votes that we kill ‘The Creator’ to end it all and has given himself the task of committing random acts of fuckery to web servers so subscribed readers don’t receive notices about updates. Sookie’s livid because she’s following two stories. She’s forced to stalk the websites to find new chapters.”
“Do the writers have promise?”
“No. She’s just curious. They’re too new to gauge if they’d suit our needs.”
“Eric, it pains me to say this, but I think Bill might be on to something. Leaking the ending wasn’t enough. Some readers are still hopeful… I’m not sure how the fuck someone can get away with fucking over the lead characters. Her readers have to be masochists… We have a bigger problem though. I think finding a ghostwriter for her can wait. They’re filming the next season.”
“I don’t want to know about that either, do I?”
Pam watched a couple of teenagers grope each other in the pool from the window of her hotel room. “You really don’t. It’s horrible. I caught up to that beanpole, the one that plays Eric. Overfriendly fucking Swede… he hugged me…”
Eric growled. He was already so frustrated he was close to pulling his own hair out… listening to Pam segue wasn’t helping matters.
“Could you please focus?”
“Oh, right… he told me where to find the shitheel who let the TV show go off the rails. It’s only going to get worse.”
“We can’t find a single writer to replace The Creator. You want us to replace an entire writing staff?”
“Oh, for the love of silk, Eric… No…”
Sookie pleaded, “The Eric is pretty hot, but can Pam do something in the wardrobe trailer while she’s there? I mean, the Sookie is bad enough. Brunette roots, brown eyes, and… It’s not her fault she doesn’t have any boobs, but they make push-up bras…”
Eric growled, “Sookie we need to focus…”
“I know… And why does Pam look like a Studio 54 nightmare? I read the Pam actress is a sweetheart and everybody loves her to death, so it’s not likely that the hair and wardrobe department hates her… The only thing I can figure is that they did some seriously damaging drugs in the 80s. And that’s new because she was really cute in the first couple of seasons.”
Pam groaned, “Tell me about it… and I read the Sam actor’s actually from Louisiana. Why the fuck hasn’t he helped with those accents? The best southern accent on the show is delivered by the Aussie Jason actor.”
Eric set the phone down, giving up on his attempts to keep Sookie and Pam focused, and returned to his reading…
Admittedly, he’d taken advantage of the website’s rating filters and was hoping to find a ghostwriter in the collection of ‘lemon-carts’ rated M. After dozens of stories, he realized it was a longshot, but he would have been fine with an agreeable Sookie who never wanted to leave his bedroom… for a while.
It was a race at this point… since Sookie was reading stories under the ‘family’ and ‘romance’ categories. Her favorites were the stories where her grandmother was still alive, or her brother was intelligent… or, God forbid, Eric had become King. It didn’t really matter what he was King of, she just liked that it seemed easier for Eric to protect her as a King.
While Sookie and Pam nitpicked the show’s failures, and accused Eric of beating a dead horse about a wig from several season’s back, Alcide arrived…
His bravado started in the driveway as his truck skidded to a stop, sending gravel flying against the side of Eric’s Corvette.
Eric growled and waited until Alcide slammed the front door open to mention, “I agree with Sookie, Pam, the Alcide actor is much more fuckable than the actual Alcide.”
Sookie and Pam gasped collectively and argued for the real Alcide’s fuckability, but he hadn’t seemed to notice the insult as he stormed into the house and set a Sonic bag on the table between Sookie and Eric.
“I. HAD. AN. IDEA.”
Eric had been in a foul mood before the side of his car was peppered with rocks. He groaned, “And you’re late because you stopped at Pet Smart in your attempt to replace Debbie.”
Sookie kicked Eric’s leg under the table for being mean and giggled, “Let’s hear it, Alc.”
He shook his head. “I’m not going to get used to that, really. And why the fuck do the All-Humans keep renaming you as Suzanne? Suzanna?”
Sookie shrugged. “I dunno… I’m trying to figure out if the Creator hated me from the get-go. I mean, she named me Sookie and then gave everyone else in my damn family a normal name. I never had a chance of blending in anywhere but a trailer park with a name like Sookie.”
Eric rolled his eyes and began researching black-market Ritalin. If college students could find it, he might have some luck making his co-conspirators concentrate.
When Google only returned exposé articles, he groaned, “Your idea, Herveaux. What was it?”
“Oh! Just glamour the Eric actor.”
“To do what, exactly?”
“To quit the show. I mean, that’ll take care of the show problem. I couldn’t sleep last night. I found a site with all these comments. He’s the only reason a lot of people watch… He could say it’s time for him to move on. It’s not like he hasn’t done a ton of movies in the past couple of years.”
Sookie whined, “But he’s so hot… and… well, he just did a movie with a little girl and there are beaucoup clips and pictures of them together everywhere. I think I’m pregnant.”
Eric growled, but Alcide’s growl was louder. “Why not strike a deal with Pam then? Kidnap him. You can keep him on a leash at the foot of your bed.”
Sookie chewed on her lip while she considered that idea… whatever was going through her mind made her blush.
Eric had enough. He closed his laptop and stood to leave. “Fuck this. It’ll serve you right when you end up with Billith in the show and Sam in the books.”
Sookie laughed as she went after him and blocked his path. “I was just teasing. Stop. Don’t leave. We’ll think of something.”
“Are you finished fantasizing about the affectionate Swede with the adorable overbite?”
It was a struggle for Sookie to keep a straight face, but she nodded. “I’m sorry.”
Pam sighed, “Are you really butt-hurt about it? Because I’m considering Alcide’s idea myself… I don’t have a Swede in my room.”
Alcide asked, “Hey Pam, while you’re shopping, I’ll take that Jessica.”
Eric decided if a ghostwriter wasn’t found, the Creator would be glamoured to resurrect Debbie so Alcide could father her pups in the coda… it wasn’t like she’d followed any of her own rules thus far.
Pam agreed, “We can trade back and forth. I’m fond of her too.”
“What the fuck would I want with a Swedish Meatball like him?”
“Sookie has a few ideas. Maybe she’ll share.”
Sookie caught herself blushing again and slapped her hands over her face. “I give up! Why don’t we just cut her loose? The Creator, I mean. She’s already done her damage.”
Alcide agreed, “While I was surfing the web last night, I realized even the die-hards are afraid to read the last book.”
Eric sighed, “But what if she sends Sookie off into the sunset for her HEA with Quinn?”
Sookie snorted, “We’ll always have fanfiction… We’re it for them. Stories about me with anyone else fall flat. The writers, even the really popular ones, catch all kinds of flak for putting me with anyone else.”
“There are a few…”
“Not nearly as popular.”
Pam offered, “I’m… as much as I’m enjoying the nightly buffet in the hotel pool… I’m seeing Sookie’s point. I’m awesome in fanfiction.”
Eric’s eye rolled again. “You’re a spoiled brat in fanfiction.”
“I’m fine with that.”
“I’m sure you are.”
“You and Sookie are fantastic in fanfiction. I’ve been doing a little reading too. Hot stuff. I say we move to fanfiction.”
Alcide whimpered, “The only fanfic that doesn’t fuck me over are the All Human ones or the ones that just kill me as a plot device.”
Pam countered, “You need to leave the main site and go to some of the blogs, my furry friend. You kind of get fucked no matter what. There are some fics where you and Sookie are friends, but at least you’re happy.”
“Happy, I can do… at least I’m not tied to Debbie. I swear. It’s like my own personal Groundhog Day hell. Should we ask Bill about his op-”
Eric, Sookie and Pam unanimously interrupted to say, “No!”
Eric explained, “He’s currently trying to sabotage the internet so no one can read fanfiction because he’s unhappy with being repeatedly ended and discarded.”
Alcide sympathetically offered, “Whaah.”
Sookie giggled and bounced up to kiss Eric’s cheek. “I’m gonna go change.”
“Is there a dress code for fanfiction?”
“No, but I’m always thinner, so I want to squeeze into something smaller.”
“You might want to make it a bikini. You always cum more too.”
She shouted, “I KNEW YOU WERE JUST SKIMMING FOR LEMONS!” and slammed her bedroom door.