Charlaine Harris owns almost everything. I own the rest.
Ella has gone shopping, so if you want to see Sookie’s wardrobe, search shopstyle dot com for mysecreto and you’ll find me. I love shopping for Sookie!!
I must thank my brilliant husband for his insight into the history of the LDS church and for brainstorming with me about character and story development. I would like to make a disclaimer that this IS a work of fiction. I hope I don’t offend anyone as I delve into Utah folklore (whether it is true or not). It is not my intent, so please keep that in mind as you read.
I also must thank the lovely and talented SeriousCrush, spending endless hours going over my story, brainstorming with me, and helping me perfect every little detail. I cannot say how much I appreciate all you do for me, and also how much you crack me up when you talk like Yoda.
Eric and I spent the remaining hours of the night getting our things together for our trip to Salt Lake City. I laid my luggage on the bed and pulled out some of my favorite clothes. I thought if I had some of my favorites out, Ella could put together a wardrobe for me.
I checked the weather for northern Utah and noticed that it was supposed to be below freezing during our stay, which apparently was typical for the last weekend in January. I pulled out the parka, the gloves, pants and hat that I got in Iceland. I also laid out some of the wooly socks I got from Tara’s store and my warm winter boots. I wasn’t sure how much time we would be spending out in the elements, but I thought it would be better to be prepared.
I had noticed when I had taken Ella on a tour of our house that there were quite a few items in the fridge that I would need to get rid of. So I cleaned out the fruit and vegetable crispers, putting aside fruit I could take with me for the flight. After making myself an omelet with the remaining eggs, milk, and veggies, I stood up, organizing the rest of the food and noticed Eric was casually lounging on the couch, reading. “Are you already done packing?” He nodded, not looking up from his Kindle. I guess he didn’t have much to consider when packing, pants, shirts, a few suits and shoes. Men certainly had an easier time when it came to clothing decisions. They also had a lot less selection, which I had heard Eric complain about more than once.
After sorting through the fridge, I cleaned up the rest of the kitchen. Nothing like coming home to a foul and mysterious odor from something forgotten in the cupboard or garbage can. As I was mopping the kitchen floor, Eric’s voice came from the front room, “Lover, I hope you’re not working too hard in there, the cleaning service I use is coming on Monday to do a thorough cleaning.” Now he tells me!
I flopped down on the couch next to Eric and sighed. “I’m ready for bed.” He glanced at the clock and said, “Already? It’s only 5:00 am.”
“Perfect, so that means I can get 12 hours of sleep! Are you going to stay up and read?” He nodded his head again, “I’ll be down in a couple of hours.”
I leaned over and kissed him goodnight, and was about to head downstairs when I stopped and asked him, “Are you going to bring your travel coffin?”
He looked up at me and said, “No, I don’t think so. Lavar has arranged flights to and from Salt Lake City during the night, and Rebecca, from the Narayana clan, has done the same for our flight home from Las Vegas. I don’t see why I should bother bringing it.”
I nodded, closing my eyes for a little longer than I had anticipated. “Go to sleep, we can talk more about our trip later.”
I blew him another kiss and got ready for bed. I set the alarm for 4:30 pm, giving myself a little extra time to get ready before Ella arrived. I crawled into bed and fell asleep snuggled against Eric’s pillow. I was out cold when he joined me in bed, and only noticed he had come to bed when I woke up to the alarm. Eric wouldn’t be up for another hour, so I decided to shower and get ready. I had just pulled on a pair of dressy brown pants and a cozy cream sweater when the doorbell rang.
Ella was standing outside the door with a big smile and many packages in her arms. “I had so much fun shopping for you!! I swear the clothes at Ann Taylor are made for you, and they have the most beautiful shoes and jewelry too.” I gestured for her to come in, taking some of the packages from her arms. We went right into my bedroom, where she put all but one of the packages. She left a small golden box, wrapped in creamy white organdy ribbon in the front room on the table.
“First things first. This is your dinner.” She said, handing me the smallest bag with some take away food from a local restaurant. “Ella! You are so thoughtful!” It was so kind, and I couldn’t stop smiling at her. “You sit and eat and I’ll show you what I bought for you.” “Oh, we forgot the small golden package in the front room. Should I go get it?” She shook her head, “No, that’s Eric’s.” Her smile broadened and I was tempted to peek inside her head, since she would surely be thinking about what it was, but then I remembered my promise to Eric. No peeking. “Ok, show me the clothes!”
She opened one of the larger bags, while I sat back on the bed in my room and opened the container of food brimming with pasta, steamed vegetables and a slice of bread. “The first thing I picked out for you were trousers and skirts. I got two pencil skirts, in coal gray and black. I also chose two pairs of trousers, in black and khaki. This collarless jacket is the same coal as the skirt, and would make a very dressy and conservative suit. This black tiered shell shirt would be stunning under the jacket, giving you a flash of glamour under something so simple. I love this turtleneck, the dark crimson color is so rich and beautiful, and would work well with any of the skirts or trousers, or jeans! For your trip to Salt Lake, I got this ribbed sweater. The color, abyss, will be stunning with your eyes, and the scoop neck is sexy and smart. So, what do you think so far?”
I finished chewing the broccoli in my mouth and said, “Oh Ella, I love it!! Show me more!!”
“I have a few more tops. This drape neck top is so beautiful, and I think this color of pink will look amazing with your tan skin. I also thought this white ruffle front shirt would be versatile and is so pretty. I picked out this cowl neck top because it has such a pretty opal sheen and the petal sleeves are so delicate that I thought you should have it too.” She shrugged her shoulders in the most adorable way, and I couldn’t help but agree with her.
“Now for my favorite part. The dresses. This,” she said, pulling a deep plum colored dress out of the bag, “is a silk georgette one-shoulder dress. The color is amazing, especially with your stunning blonde hair. This one,” she said pulling another dress out, “reminded me of a costume from ‘The Nutcracker.’ It’s a petal dress, made of organza and the color is even called ‘glazed fig.’ How perfect is that? The last one is my favorite by far, a black silk strapless gown, the ruffle detailing adds the perfect touch of texture and the A line cut will look amazing on you. There is even a built in shelf bra and boning to help support your bust.”
I clapped my hands. “They are all so beautiful! The Nutcracker dress and the black silk dress are definitely my favorites. I am going to feel like a goddess in these clothes!”
“Wait, you haven’t seen the shoes!” She lifted a rigid bag with shoeboxes inside. “Strappy black sandals, high heel platform booties in brown, and these.” She pulled out the largest box containing knee high shiny black high-heeled boots, like the one she wore yesterday. “I knew you loved mine, and they would be so sexy with these pencil skirts, I couldn’t help myself.” I clutched my chest as she pulled them from the box. “I also got you a few necklaces and bracelets.” She pulled them out of the smaller bag and showed me the cut crystal necklace tied with black ribbon with matching earrings, and the antique gold necklace splashed with fringes of gold. They were so beautiful. I never bought jewelry for myself. “I also picked out a few lovely intimates for you, and Eric.” She flashed the edge of a lacy black bra and matching panties, and a stack of thigh high stockings in black and gray. She also pulled out a bra, panties and garter set, all in soft pink.
“Ella, you’re going to make me cry! This is so stunning! You got all of this done in one day?”
“Yes. Like I said, Ann Taylor is made for you, so shopping there was easy. Besides, it’s always fun to shop for a woman with a bombshell figure!” Ella winked at me. “Speaking of shopping for you, I need to take exact measurements to help me in the future. Sizes vary so much from one brand to the next, armed with your measurements I will be certain of the fit.” She pulled out a small flexible tape measure from her pocket. I lifted my arms and stood still while she measured and jotted down everything in her notebook. “We still have an hour before we need to leave. Why don’t you try these on? I’ll be out in the hall, you can just give me a shout when you want me to come see.”
For the next half hour, I pretended to be in a fashion show, trying on one thing after another. Ella clapped and whistled for me, making me blush. I had definitely made the right choice hiring her.
I could hear the water running in the shower downstairs, and noticed that the sun had just gone down. Eric joined us a few minutes later, he smelled spicy from his soap, and his skin was still a little pink from the heat of the water. “Good evening, Lover. Ella.” He kissed me and smiled at her. “Did you have any, uh, luck, shopping?” He asked Ella. “I did. The box in the front room is for you.” “Excellent.” He replied, then took in the suspicious look on my face and said, “Remember, no peeking!” I held my hands up and shook my head. I was nothing if not a woman of my word.
“I will leave you to finish packing while I go investigate the box in the front room.” He smiled and left the room.
“Men and their secrets!” I huffed and crossed my arms over my chest. Ella only smiled at me.
“Since you’ll be going to such a cold place, you should take that beautiful black cashmere dress, jeans, and a few more skirts and blouses to even out your new wardrobe. As far as I’m concerned, the coal gray suit is the perfect choice for a meeting with the press, especially if you wear those Louboutin’s. It’s sophisticated and sexy. Just like you.” I hugged her and we worked together to finish packing.
“Ella, they are perfect, did you have any luck with the other piece?” Eric’s voice startled us from the doorway. She nodded her head and bowed slightly, “I’m glad you like them, and yes, my friend has a shop and is designing something I know you will both love.” The temptation to look in her mind was so overwhelming that I had to busy myself with straightening things in my closet. She zipped up my second piece of luggage and said, “Shall we?”
“I’m ready.” I said, glancing around my room again.
It was a quick drive to the airport, and as she closed the back of her van she said, “I hope you have a wonderful trip. I’ll see you in a week and a half.”
“Thank you, Ella. For everything!” I hugged her and walked away before I started crying.
The flight to Salt Lake City was uneventful, and as we came in for a landing, I noticed the soft white snow that covered the city.
We claimed our luggage and made our way to the waiting area inside the airport, where we saw a woman holding a sign that said ‘Northman/Stackhouse.’ We walked over to her and I smiled at her. She and Eric nodded and she smiled at me. “I’m Eliza Christiansen, you must be Eric and Sookie. I have a car waiting, I’ll be driving you to the hotel.” She pronounced her last name ‘Christ-ee-an-sen’ and I made a mental note so I wouldn’t embarrass myself later when I met her husband.
Eliza was a vampire, and unlike the vampires I had met, her clothing seemed out of place and dated. Her hair was pulled up away from her face, and clipped on the top of her head resembling the keel of an overturned boat, from there, it was incorporated into a very long straight braid. The dress had a crisp collar and buttoned straight down the front to the waist, where a billowy skirt flared out. She looked like she had probably been 40 when she was turned, and had a relatively plain, yet strikingly beautiful face. She didn’t wear makeup of any kind, and had a no-nonsense look about her. She didn’t speak at all as we drove from the airport through the expanse of nothingness before we came into the city.
“Here we are.” She said, as she stopped in front of the spectacularly beautiful Gardo Hotel. It had a very Victorian design to it, with narrow windows, rounded on the top, pillars around the front entrance, and striking balconies edged with wrought iron that separated each floor of the hotel. Some of the rooms had doors leading to a private balcony, in the same rounded design as the windows. The entire roof of the building was enclosed with the same wrought iron, and a single spire jutted up to meet it, giving the occupants of the penthouse a view of the city. The main color of the hotel was a pale salmon pink, accented beautifully with soft cream and rich brown. There were lights surrounding the hotel, shining up onto its beautiful façade. The trees around the hotel were delicate weeping skeletons of birch trees, beautifully bending under the thick snow that covered their soft branches. She pulled the car into an underground parking garage, situated under the hotel. We took an elevator up, and when the doors slid open in the lobby we were greeted by the rest of her family.
Eliza walked over to join the rest of her family. Lavar was standing there, surrounded by his seven wives. All of the wives were dressed similarly to Eliza, all in shades of blue. Their hair was also the same, puffs of perfectly situated hair tied on top of their heads leading into braids or soft waves spilling down their backs. “Eric, it is so good to finally meet you in person, and you must be Sookie Stackhouse. I’m Lavar Christiansen.These are my wives; Sarah, Jane, Harriet, Caroline, Mary, Esther, and of course, you’ve already met Eliza.” I felt like I had slipped inside the nursery rhyme about St. Ives. ‘As I was going to St. Ives, I met a man with seven wives.’ I was tempted to look behind them to see if they were carrying sacks full of cats. The thought of it was so absurd that I giggled to myself and followed it quickly with my introduction. “How-de-do.” I said and curtsied to them as a collective group. Eric nodded his head.
After my giggling, they were all still staring at me as if I were crazy, or just plain rude, so I decided to break the tension with a question. “This hotel is stunning! Who designed it?”
Lavar’s face perked up. “I did. Well, actually it is based on the lavish mansion that Brigham Young had commissioned in 1873. I was apprenticing under William H. Folsom at the time and when he began working with Joseph Ridges to design a mansion suitable for the profit to entertain and serve as host to guests, I gladly offered to help. You should have seen it! It was the most lavish mansion in all of Utah. It was a shame when it was demolished 80 years ago. I had some of the original sketches from the construction, so after the great revelation, I decided to bring it to life once more.”
The woman Lavar had identified as Sarah stepped forward, “I am sure we can give them a history lesson after they have had a chance to get settled into their suite.” I liked her instantly. Lavar nodded his head, smiled, and said, “Of course, dear.”
“I will be happy to escort them.” Sarah said as she led us to the elevator. This was not the paternal hierarchy of polygamists that I had always heard of. “My husband gets a little overzealous reminiscing about the good old days. He forgets that our guests need to relax after a day of travel.” She smiled at me and I noticed that she was lovely and very young, 18 at the oldest. At least she had been when she was turned. She had taken control of Lavar’s conversation with a kind of gentle confidence. How is it that she called the shots? My face must have revealed my curiosity and she said bluntly, “You have questions.” I nodded my head. She smiled, and I relaxed, hoping to have some time with her later.
The elevator doors opened, and she led us down a hallway to the suite at the end of the floor. The room was massive, and filled with furniture that seemed to come right from the 1800’s. The wooden floors shined in the lights positioned around the rooms. The walls were covered with a subdued floral print, which coordinated beautifully with the rich velvet covering the chairs on either side of an armoire standing proudly on four beautifully carved legs. The room had been modernized with a large bed, an updated bathroom and a flat screen television, tucked discretely inside the armoire. Even though the pieces were probably replicas, no expense had been spared in their attention to detail. The wood was curved and polished to a high shine, and the velvet was tacked in place expertly, looking like something out of a museum. I stroked the soft material on the seat of the chair and Sarah smiled at me. “Between the eight of us, we remembered every detail, and we wanted things to be just right. The construction of this hotel employed dozens of furniture makers, all willing to build according to our specifications.” As I inspected the fine details of the furniture, Eric set up his laptop on a beautiful roll top desk in the corner, connected to the wifi network and began reading e mail. The décor gave the illusion of the period, without sacrificing modern amenities.
“Sarah, I hope you don’t mind me asking, but I am curious about how it is that you are in charge. Don’t get me wrong, I love a commanding woman, but it goes against everything I have ever heard about polygamists.”
“That story is for another time. Please, make yourselves at home. I would love to give you a tour of the hotel later tonight, including a traditional Utah breakfast if you find that you are hungry.” Sarah bid us farewell and left the room.
I exhaled loudly and turned to face Eric. “What was that all about?” I asked him.
“Sarah is their maker. Wasn’t it obvious by her authoritative presence?” He said staring down into my face.
“That makes sense. Sort of. I hope she tells me the rest of her story, it must be fascinating!” He nodded his head and pulled my closer to him, not really listening to me anymore. His fingers were tracing a lazy path along the top of my pants, sending goose bumps up and down my body. He pushed me towards the bed, and once he had me backed up against the edge of it, he pushed me down, making my whole body bounce. “Mm, I like that. Let’s try that naked.” He said, offering his hand to me and helping me stand up again. I pulled the comforter and sheets down, as I stood up, leaving the bed ready for us. He undressed me quickly, flinging my clothes around the room. My bra ended up dangling from the arm of one of the velvet chairs, my panties near the bathroom. I fell back onto the bed again and giggled as he obviously enjoyed the way my body jiggled as I fell. “Now you.” I said, pointing to his fully clothed body. He undressed far too quickly for me to notice the procedure and launched his body onto the bed next to me, making my breasts jiggle again. “Oo, I could spend hours watching that.” He said as he lifted his body and bounced next to me. Before I let him digress into a full-blown bed jumping episode I grabbed his hand and put it between my legs. “I think there’s something a little more productive you could be doing right now.”
“Anything you say, Lover.” He brought his middle finger to my mouth and I sucked on it until it was warm and wet. I held my breath as he teased the folds of my sex open. He pushed his finger inside me, and immediately curled his finger, forcing my body into a blissful spasm. I arched my body and as my nipple brushed across his chest, he growled and bent his head to suck it into his mouth. I was clutching the sheets, holding on for dear life as his finger worked me closer and closer to sublime release. He curled his finger again and pushed his palm flat against my clit, moving his hand fast enough that the vibrations sent me spiraling into my first orgasm. He continued to suck and finger fuck me, giving me many more orgasms, all piled up on top of each other. I couldn’t recover from one before the next one hit. He finally released his mouth from my nipple and smiled at me with a cocky smirk on his face. I stared at him, hazy and lost in pleasure, still twitching next to him.
“I love that I can do that to you.” He said, pausing to lick his finger clean. “Mm, you are so delicious.” I shuddered at his words and felt a flood of moisture pool between my legs.
Eric remained on his side and I was on my back. He swung one of my legs over his side and the other between his legs. He reached between our bodies and pushed the head of his cock against my dripping pussy. I moaned at the contact and moved my body perpendicular to his until my hair was dangling off the side of the bed. He moved again and was so deep inside me that I screamed out at the intense pleasure that I had never experienced before. I couldn’t get enough of him, this deep, filling me so perfectly. I reached over and grabbed his knee and pulled it up to my chest, and straightened the leg that was over his body until it was stretched up his chest, resting next to his face. My other leg was bent and gave me the power to slam into him. He kissed and nipped at my ankle, stroking my leg as he pumped into me. Our bodies were twined together so deeply, and I met every thrust with an equally powerful buck of my hips. I clutched his bent leg, using it as an anchor to give me more strength so I could get him to fuck me deeper and harder. I thought about telling him what I wanted, but only gasps of pleasure came out of my mouth. My mind slipped sideways as a mind-blowing orgasm started creeping through me. With one more thrust I screamed as I came, convulsing under his leg, which moved freely across my hot slippery skin. Eric continued to pump into me, and mumbled, “So wet, so hot, gonna cum.” His cock swelled inside me and was squeezed by my pussy as my orgasm still forced contraction after contraction through my body.
I was still gasping for breath when I heard his voice, “That was intensely pleasurable. I cannot believe that we haven’t tried that position yet.”
“Mm.” I cleared my throat, willing myself to speak. “Yes it was, I think it’s my new favorite.” I smiled and twisted my body until I was snuggled next to him.
Welcome to Salt Lake City. Review please, you know how I love it!