The Franklin Files — Happy New Year

January 7, 2011

The Franklin Files” – Happy New Year

“Here drink this.” Jesus handed Lafayette a Bloody Mary. “Trust me, you two will feel a whole lot better and I’m a nurse. And I added a little secret magic to it, too.” He handed one to Tara who was laying head to toe with Lafayette on the couch and looked like she could be a vampire. She was the absolute color of death.

“Please tell me I’m not going to see no visions. I swear if I see visions as soon as I can lift myself off this couch I’ll kick your sorry ass from here to Tijuana.”

“No worries, sweetheart, it’s all spices from your local grocery store. My, my, you two are wee bit touchy this morning.”

“Sorry, babe, as much as I love them, I don’t do Champagne and Courvoisier together real well. But I sure seemed to like it last night – a lot.” Lafayette lifted the damp cloth from his face and attempted to smile.

“You sure did. You liked a lot of other things, too…”

“Oh, really…honestly, I don’t remember a whole lot of what happened after I stopped cooking the last couple of specials Sam had going last night. I can’t believe people really ponied up $13.95 for some cocktail shrimp and 6 oz sizzler. Hard to believe that’s the fanciest “Turf and Surf” they’ve ever seen in Merlotte’s, let alone Bon Temps. But I guess with a complimentary glass of champagne, noise maker and a party hat, it was a pretty nice event at the bar.”

“Well, I can tell you, everyone had a really nice time, especially you,” Jesus started to laugh, looking at Tara, “and Sookie. When you two started doing the can-can on top of the bar, I gained a whole new respect for you. Doing ‘The Bump?’ I didn’t know anyone still knew that old dance existed anymore. And when you closed it all out with ‘The Macarena’! It was absolutely classic!”

Tara groaned, and somehow managed to hit him dead on in the face with pillow, “You can shut the hell up any old time now.”

“My, my, my, okay, I can see my attempts at a lighthearted banter is getting me nowhere with the two of you.  How about I read you a little story. Have you checked in with Franklin lately? Do you know how his New Year’s began? Lafayette told me that his mother is missing and you think she’s been turned to the ‘dark side’ but have you read anymore?”

Tara answered, rather peevishly, “I really was starting to feel sort of sorry for Franklin which really pissed me off so I didn’t want to read anymore but what the hell I already feel like crap. Let’s go ahead and see what’s happened to his mommy dearest. The book is in the back closet under some blankets.” She threw her elbow over her forehead as if she were a movie star having a fainting spell on a chaise lounge in some long ago Bette Davis black and white movie.

Soon, Jesus returned the old battered journal. “I swear I don’t know how this thing holds together. And how many more are there?”

“Enough to keep us reading for a very long time. So start reading already.”

“Obviously, you need to drink more of my special Bloody Mary, Tara.” She gave Jesus the evil eye. “Whoa, girl, I know you don’t want to go toe-to-toe, evil eye-to-evil eye with me, girl. You have no idea who I am. But for the sake of your cousin, I’ll shut up and start reading.”

“Pleeeeease. Y’all need to stop. I’m in pain, and I love you both, but if you don’t start reading in ten, you will find both your butts on the porch.” Lafayette was coming to life, but quickly laid his head back down with a hand to the forehead and an, “Ouch.”

“Alright, ‘ladies,’ settle down, I’m reading.”

Tuesday, January 1, 1856

I am defeated – and not just a little bit drunk. If I could I would drink every alcoholic spirit available in England and under the authority of the English Crown and on the Continent – and it would still not be enough to erase the terrors. Last night was the most glorious night of my life and this morning the most terrifying and terrible.

Gwendolyn’s family invited me to their home to celebrate the welcoming of the New Year. It was a beautiful dinner with many friends and family and altogether helped to take my mind off the tragedy of these last few days. Lost in the presence of Gwen’s beauty and grace, I have to admit that there were a few moments when I even forgot that mother was missing at all. Gwendolyn’s parents were most solicitous and her sweet mother took me aside in the salon and most kindly offered that even though she knew she were a poor substitute, when Gwendolyn and I were married she would do her best to be a mother to me if my own were not to be found. She begged my pardon if it were too soon to say such a thing, and I assured her that, indeed, it was not. I really do love her, she is kind and warmhearted and, is in so many ways, the sort of mother I’ve always dreamed that I might possess.

After some dessert, drinks, singing, and parlor games, Gwendolyn’s parents allowed that since the night was not so chilly, I might wrap Gwendolyn up and we might walk along the terrace for a moment of privacy. I was astounded! But we are engaged to be married and had over the evening discussed a wedding date in mid-June, after the Sunday of the Trinity, it seemed a walk alone was not inappropriate. My heart was soaring! I thought it the most glorious evening of my life. And then Gwendolyn made it even better. She grew quite affectionate with me, more than she ever had, reaching inside my heavy coat, daring to touch me in places I didn’t even know she knew existed. Her touch was tentative at first, but she grew ever more daring and I was shocked at her courage.

“Gwendolyn, I think you must stop. While I am delight to find you so enthusiastic, I am afraid I am overcome with passion for you right now and in my emotional state right now, I don’t know that I can stop myself if I should return your affection.”

“My sweet, sweet, dark haired boy. I don’t want you to stop. I’ve been talking to Mrs. General and I am sure you believe her a just an old prude, but you’d be surprised to find her otherwise. We’ve talked about the torture you must be under, and how I might alleviate your suffering, not to mention my own grief at feeling so helpless to see your deepening sadness. I want to help you, to comfort you, and we’ve agreed this is the best possible thing I could do for you right now.”

I opened my mouth to protest but she put her gloved hand to my mouth to silence me. “Meet Mrs. General in three-quarters of an hour at the kitchen entrance. She is going to bring you to me. And before you say that you won’t come, if you don’t then I am prepared to run away to the vicarage and say that you kidnapped me.”

“Well, what choice do I have then? I think this idea unwise, but I will come, if only to prevent you running away in the middle of the night. We will talk some more and then I will leave. But I promise you, I will do nothing to besmirch your honor, Gwendolyn. I would rather die first.”

“Franklin, I am to be your wife in just a few months. Just come to me.” And then she took me back inside and she bid goodnight to the group. I, too, said my farewells and went outside to ride my horse a ways off and then came round to the back of their stables where I tied him in the back of the stable yard. I made my way to the kitchen while guests were saying their goodbyes at the front door and the main lights of the kitchen had gone out. Mrs. General took me up a back stairway and I quickly found myself alone with the most ravishing creature I had ever seen in my life.

Gwendolyn was dressed in the most beautiful white linen nightgown and her golden hair was down. I could hardly speak or move for fear that I might break the  vision that stood before me. But I didn’t have to move for she came to me. And with a boldness that I hardly knew she had, she began to undress me. I would have spoken up to resist – if I could have remembered how to speak at all. She kissed my throat, my chest, and ran her hands along my spine, and when she started to reach for my trousers, I finally got a hold of myself.

“Gwendolyn, no! This is not needed. You must not. You cannot. Your honor is too important to me, my lady. I will not spoil you in this way, my dear, sweet, love of my life.”

“Franklin, darling, you know that I love you?”

“Yes, my love.”

“And we will spend eternity together as man and wife?”

“Yes, my love.”

“Then, my love, Mrs. General says this is all perfectly all right, and so I am going to help you forget your misery and you will put me out of mine.” And then she took me by the hand and led me to her bed. I dare say that Mrs. General did more than just convince her that this was a good idea, for she seemed quite knowledgeable about what to do. But how can I even think about that now? My God, what sort of monster am I?

After the sweetest few hours of my life, making love to her by the light of the sliver of the quarter moon, and taking sweet slumber in each other’s arms off and on I could see that the future could indeed be bright. Mother or not, I would be happy in my marriage to the wondrous, marvelous creature. I stole myself away while it was still dark, not wanting to risk being caught by anyone stirring in the house. As I was riding away I couldn’t resist going back to take one last look at that beloved window wherein my lay my beloved. When I drew close to the house I saw two dark figures climbing out that very same window. I let out a shout and I swear they took to the air!

I drove the horse to the house and mounted the back stairs to her bedroom to find Gwendolyn her beautiful night gown shredded to pieces and she was covered in blood with not only the deep fang marks of before but actual gashes as if she, herself, had been torn apart. I took her in my arms and tried to rouse her, but there was no life in her. I let out a yell that brought the whole house to her room. I told them that I could not sleep and so I went out for a ride and saw the two figures coming out of her window. I left out the part about them flying for fear they’d think I’d gone absolutely mad, but I know that is the truth of it and I will not rest until I discover who they are.

As the chaos ensued and we waited for the doctor’s arrival, I went to the window to see if I could learn anything about these horrible murderers. As I looked down at the exterior window casing, I saw something caught there between it and the roof. It was a gold bracelet with small rubies that belongs to Mother. I grabbed the bracelet and put it in my pocket. I’m not telling the constable, at least not yet.

Because I am the source of all this death and suffering. Obviously, the same people who did this to Gwendolyn are the same people that have taken Mother, and the only conclusion I can make is that it is someone out to hurt me. The only connection between the two of them is that I love them with my whole heart, so that must be why Gwendolyn was killed tonight. It is my fault.  I feel such terrible guilt that I’d gladly give my own life for hers. I’d gladly take my own life except for one thing – I will have my vengeance upon the killers…I have one clue to follow, there was the note upon my pillow when I returned home, “Never forget, I am always and forever watching you.” It must be linked to the killers.

“Well, I think we are beginning to know when psycho Franklin began to appear,” Lafayette took a long drink from his Bloody Mary. The room was silent for a while.

“How are you two feeling now? Any better? Can I get you a refill?” Jesus closed the book and got up to take their glasses. “By the way, I love these old Flintstone glasses, very classy.”

“You better step off my Betty and Wilma’s. I’ll have you know it took a lot flea market shopping to put that collection together.” Lafayette feigned being indignant.

“Well, yabba-dabba-doo. Hand me your glass so I can fill up good old Betty for you and Tara, let me catch your little old Pebbles.” Jesus reached for her class.

“After, that journal entry, you better make me a Pebbles and Bam-Bam.”

Disclaimer: The Franklin Files are provided for entertainment purposes only and is a parody of the fantasy series, True Blood, and as such, is presented here for your amusement. “Franklin Files” and the various writers who contribute to it, have no relationship/affiliation to HBO, True Blood, or any of the cast or crew of said program nor any relation to Charlaine Harris, or the Sookie Stackhouse novels.

Written By: Sarahfina

Graphics By: Sarahfina

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The Franklin Files — The Gifts

December 23, 2010


“You know our mamas would be ticked if they knew we were getting them the same thing.”

“Girlfriend, who the hell taught you to wrap a present? Don’t you know you line up the box along the top of the edge of the wrapping paper so you get a nice even line so it all wraps up nice and even?” Lafayette snatched the large box away from Tara. “Just let me wrap the damn presents. They’ll probably be pissed to know I wrapped them both, too, but damn, I can’t stand a bad wrapping job.”

“There is soooo much I could be saying right now, but since it’s Christmas Eve I think I’ll just leave it alone right now. I can’t wait to get up in the morning and visit our moms.”

“Correction. I’ll be visiting my mom and then we’ll be visiting Lettie Mae together. You know how Ruby Jean can get. And on a Messianic holiday?! Oh, Lordy! She oughtta’ be in fine form tomorrow!”

“Well, thanks for taking away my Christmas morning entertainment…”

“Well, that’s not how we used to remember Christmas.”

“Yeah, I remember.”

“Lafayette, do you remember when I got the beautiful Black Malibu Barbie and you got that set of Power Rangers? And I have to tell you, whatever you put in this eggnog is damn good.”

“Why thank you, Miss Merlotte’s Bartender. It’s a little nutmeg, rum, brandy and crème de cacao. Guess they should have me doing everything up in that place, huh? But, anyway, yes, I think the now famous Power Rangers/Malibu Barbie Christmas may be what sent our mothers over the edge.”

Tara threw a pillow at him. “Boy, trust me. Our mothers were far gone before that. I’m surprised they had their shit together enough to even get us those presents. I wouldn’t be surprised if Sookie’s grandmother bought them for us.”

“Yeah, she probably did. Which makes it even sadder that they threw them out.”

“Boy, don’t look so morose. Now it seems all kind of funny. The disco music was blaring from the radio, and you made that runway on my bed. And I hooked up that fly-line from my closet so that Malibu Barbie could come in and blow the whole thing up. It was awesome! But seeing it from their perspective, you can see why they freaked a little!”

“Yeah, they walked in just in time to see the red power ranger in a tutu get blown right off the bed!”

“It was awesome! But I did look like a psychopath!”

“And I looked like…me!”

“You’re crazy! And in spite of everything, I do love you. Here, open your present.” Tara handed him what was possibly the worst wrapped present in the history of Christmas.

“Well, I see you wrapped it yourself.”

“Bitch. Just open it.”

Lafayette opened the box and inside was a crystal etched frame containing a smiling picture of him and Tara in close-up, all the love and all the history coming through. Tara said, “Sookie took it at Merlotte’s sometime this past year.”

Lafayette started to tear up. “Tara I love it. And despite all the stuff I say, I love you more than anything, more than anyone on the face of this earth, baby girl.”

“I know.”

“Here’s your present.” He handed her a jewelry box with a bow on it. She opened it up to find a beautiful solid round gold bracelet. “It’s engraved on the inside, it says ‘Mi Corazón’ which means ‘My Heart’ in Spanish. With all the attention on ‘beating’ and ‘unbeating’ hearts going on around here, I wanted you to know that your heart means the world to me, always and forever.”

Tara was speechless. With tears in her eyes she gave her cousin a hug and then the two of them melted into the couch and for a long time sat watching the video of the yuletide log they had playing on the TV. Suddenly, Tara jumped up. “With everything being so busy, we never did find out who was missing in Franklin’s Journal!”

“Damn, you’re right! That will be our final Christmas gift to each other! To at least find that out!”

Sunday, December 23, 1855

So, I am bereft this Christmastide. I have Gwendolyn but my parents are gone. My father is nothing but a blithering idiot. I have a parish but no heart to lead it. I pray for help…

These last two weeks have been a blur and I can’t begin to recount what I haven’t written. Suffice it to say, Mother is still missing. It’s as if she as fallen off the face of the earth although she has visited me in my dreams, but I will write more of that in a moment.

Gwendolyn has recovered, most thankfully. But I do not know how I can move forward with marriage at this time without my dear mother here to witness it. What will my marital home mean without my darling mother there to give advice? What will grandchildren mean without mother there to play and dote upon them? What will my life as a clergyman mean without mother there to see my success? It seems my life has lost all meaning…

Father’s life most certainly has. I have had to take up all preaching, such as it is. I can barely put two words together, but it is more than Father can do. A terrible secret has been revealed to me. As soon as mother disappeared, Father relinquished all parish duties to me. I thought it was out of grief, but after a few days of it, I confronted him in his bed, and told him to get up and get to doing something that he’d be the better man for it, the parish needed him, and so on and so forth. He completely broke down and confessed that he has done none of the parish work for years except for the visiting and the “showy” things, that mother does all the administrative work, and even writes his sermons for him! She always has, he says! He’s completely incapable of it. So, I’ve been left to do it all. He’s become nothing but a driveling mess, and I’d be angry if he weren’t so utterly pathetic. And to be honest, I’m too exhausted.

I haven’t been able to sleep well, after a horrible nightmare about mother about a week ago. Each night I both fear it will recur and hope that it will happen again so I may see her and have a clue as to where she is. I dreamed that I was awakened to find her and Mr. Flintwich, Mr. Edgington and Mr. Tobin all standing around my bed. She was holding my hand with hands as cold as ice, and then began to sniff at me as if she were taking in my scent. At this point Mr. Edgington and Mr. Tobin pulled her away from me, whispering that it was unwise for her to get too close.

In case it was really her, I tried to draw her in, by telling her that I had purchased that beautiful burgundy dress from the dress shop to give her as a gift for Christmas. I knew it would be like catnip for her and it she were truly alive she couldn’t resist. “Oh, Franklin, you bought the dress for me? You’re such a loving son.” But again, Mr. Edgington yanked on her arms, and said, something about being a maker or something. I couldn’t quite understand it.

Again, I brought up the dress, and her beautiful hair, trying to draw her out. But then Edgington got really angry and said they had to leave. She began to cry but her tears were like the blood of our Savior as you see in some paintings. Tobin approached me directly and said some words about forgetting they were there, but I started praying for my mother and her soul, the image of her tears being so horrific.

Mother must be dead, if not, why would she not return to me? The dream was just a nightmare and it is all jumbled and foggy in my brain. But I went to Mrs. Meagles to try to talk to Flintwich, Edgington, and Tobin, but only Flintwich and Waters remain. Edgington and Tobin have sailed for the States, which seems odd given the time of year. I know it is not Christian, but I would not mind they meet a winter storm and perish. Forgive me! There is something not right about those men. As to Flintwich and Waters, Mrs. Meagles said they are never available during the day, and that she would ask that they stop by the rectory without delay.

“Damn! I hate how this boy continues to make me feel bad for him! No wonder I was drawn to him. We’re both from the F’d Up Mother’s Club!” Tara threw a pillow into the chair next to her.

“Girl, it’s time we head over to Merlotte’s to work. There’s going to be a big time Christmas partying going on. Then we got some serious bejeweled robes and slippers to deliver. They are going to love them. My mom is going to have the finest robe in the nursing home and she looks so fine in jewel tone purple. Maybe if the dollar store is open, we can stop and get her a crown, she’d love that.”

“Yeah, if Franklin thinks his mama is a princess, he hasn’t met Ruby Jean. Now that woman thinks she’s a queen!”

Lafayette sighed, “Girl, sometimes, I think she really is.”


Disclaimer: The Franklin Files are provided for entertainment purposes only and is a parody of the fantasy series, True Blood, and as such, is presented here for your amusement. “Franklin Files” and the various writers who contribute to it, have no relationship/affiliation to HBO, True Blood, or any of the cast or crew of said program nor any relation to Charlaine Harris, or the Sookie Stackhouse novels.

Written By: Sarahfina

Photo & Graphics By: Sarahfina

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