I was sitting at my kitchen table talking to Amelia after work the next day. Eric had given me a run for my money when it came to being stubborn. He refused to tell me anything about where we were going that night on our date. I was filling Amelia in on everything that had happened in the last few days since I’d been pretty busy and hadn’t had a whole lot of time to catch her up on things.
“So you two have been sleeping together, but not having sex?” Amelia arched an eyebrow at me.
“Yep.” I nodded and sipped my iced tea.
“I thought you said the sex was good?”
“It was great.” I corrected her.
“So then what’s the problem?”
“There isn’t a problem. I just don’t want to rush it.”
Amelia laughed at me. “You realize how ridiculous that sounds, right? You didn’t even know his last name and you fucked him.”
“That’s before I knew him.”
“Hun, you know I love you, but you’re not making a whole lot of sense.”
“I like him, Amelia, and it caught me off guard. I wasn’t planning on meeting someone so soon.”
“So you’re afraid he’s going to be like Quinn?” She gave me one of those knowing looks and I corrected her immediately.
“Eric is nothing like Quinn. Which reminds me, Quinn came by on Wednesday morning. He saw Eric’s car in the driveway and thought I was being robbed, or something.”
“A burglar driving a cherry Corvette?” That same eyebrow shot up again. “Who does he think he’s fooling with that?”
“Not me, but since Eric was upstairs in the shower it wasn’t really the time to discuss it.”
“So when did you discuss it? Does Eric know Quinn was here?”
“Thankfully, Eric was getting in the shower when Quinn showed up, but yes, he knows Quinn was here. Whatever it is Quinn wants to talk about, we haven’t discussed it yet. Frankly, there isn’t much to say. I’m not sure where things are with Eric and me, but we’re moving forward, which I’m happy about. Quinn had three years to put a ring on my finger. He missed his chance.” I shrugged, feeling absolutely no doubt or uncertainty about what I was saying. I was really, finally, over Quinn.
“You think he wants to get back together?”
“I honestly don’t know what he wants. Maybe he just wants to be friends.”
“But you don’t do that.”
“Nope, I don’t. And with the way Quinn treated me why would I want to?”
The doorbell rang and both Amelia and I jumped. I hadn’t even heard Eric’s car pull into the driveway. “Is that him?” Amelia asked.
“By him, I hope you mean Eric.” I smiled and stood up.
“Uh, duh?” She gave me a pointed stare.
I stuck my tongue out at her and then made my way to the front door. “Hi, Tray.” I smiled and gestured for him to come in.
“Is Ame here?” He asked sheepishly.
The two of them had been on less than friendly terms since their fight on Tuesday night. Amelia couldn’t even be clear on how the whole thing had started but it had escalated when she’d come home to find him playing video games instead of doing his share of the household chores. Of course, when Tray said he’d get up and do what he was supposed to do, Amelia told him not to bother.
“Don’t do me any favors, Tray Dawson! I don’t need your help!” She’d shouted at him in a completely irrational way that had Tray confessing if it weren’t for Eric keeping me company on Tuesday, he would have been seeking refuge on my couch for the night.
“What are you doing here?” Amelia glared at Tray.
“I fixed the sink.” Tray’s eyes were down.
Amelia made some little noise and then her eyes started to water. She ran at Tray and I assumed when he caught her that all was forgiven. “I’m so sorry, baby.” She cooed in his ear and without another word, Tray turned with Amelia in his arms and headed toward their house.
Eric’s car turned into my driveway as Amelia and Tray were walking across the lawn with Amelia kissing on Tray like the world was ending. I shook my head in amazement and smiled over at Eric as he stepped out of a car that I’d never seen before. It was a beautiful car. I stepped out of the house and down to the driveway.
“Nice wheels, Mr. Northman.” I said as I sashayed toward him.
“Thank you. It’s sort of a family heirloom.” He got out of the car without opening the door and landed gracefully on my driveway.
“Fancy.” I smiled, tilting my face up toward his.
Without any furthering prompting, his lips were on mine. His tongue traced my lips, seeking entrance to my mouth, which I gave him. He kissed me slowly and sweetly before pulling back to smile at me. God, I loved that smile. His whole face lit up. I reached up and tucked some of his hair behind his ear.
“So, where are you taking me?” I grinned with excitement.
“You’ll find out when we get there.” Eric wasn’t giving up a thing.
“Gah!” I spun around to walk back in the house but he spun me back and kissed me again. “Keep kissing me like that, mister, and I might not care if we ever leave this driveway.”
He laughed and followed me inside, his hand linked with mine. “If you’ve got a throw blanket you don’t mind getting dirty, you might want to bring that, too. It’s supposed to be chilly later.”
“Chilly, huh?” I smiled over my shoulder as I reached into the hall closet for an old afghan my Gran had made for me when I was a little girl. “Does that mean you won’t be able to keep me warm wherever it is we’re going?”
“I plan on doing my part.” His eyebrows wiggled and I shook my head.
“So what else do I need?” I closed the linen closet.
“I guess that depends on who’s house we end up at later on.”
“Or I could just wear your clothes.” Eric groaned as I grabbed my purse off the kitchen counter. “Come on, let’s go.” I took his hand and pulled him toward the door.
“You don’t play fair, Stackhouse.” He stood behind me while I locked the door, his lips grazing my neck. I wiggled against him when his lips that that special spot on my neck.
We stood there giggling like a couple of dorks before noise from next door wormed its way into my brain. “Uh, we should go.”
“Are they okay over there?” Eric’s eyes darted to Amelia’s house.
“I’d say so. They’re making up.”
“Oh.” Eric straightened up.
“Yep. So let’s get out of here before we hear the grand finale.” I took his hand and headed toward the car.
My blanket went into the backseat. Eric opened my door for me and I sat down on the beautiful white leather bench seat. Eric got in beside me as I dug out my sunglasses and zipped my hoody a little bit. It was still fairly warm outside but I knew it wouldn’t feel that way once we were on the move. I pulled my hair up into a knot on top of my head and waited for Eric to start the car.
“So tell me about this car.” I said once we were on the road.
Eric told me how it had belonged to his father in his younger days. His grandparents had stored it while his father was in the Marines. I found out that Tom, Eric’s father, was a Vietnam Veteran. It was while he was traveling with the Corps that he’d met Stella, Eric’s mother. Tom was in Germany at the time for debriefing before being sent home. He was out walking around, trying to erase some of the horrible things he’d seen while at war, when he saw Stella. She was standing in front of a fountain and smiling.
“He fell in love with her right then and there.” Eric told me with a wistful smile on his face. “He didn’t know anything about her other than that smile. All he knew was that he wanted to see it again every day for the rest of his life.”
My inner romantic was gushing big time at the story. “That’s sweet.”
Eric nodded and said, “The only problem was that she didn’t speak English very well. She was studying at the university nearby but she was from Sweden. So what little German my father had picked up wasn’t very helpful in communicating with her. But that didn’t stop them. They spent as much time together as they could before Dad had to get on a plane to come back home. They wrote letters for a while, which helped with Mom’s English. When Dad got leave, he got on a plane and went to see her. When he came home, he had a wife.”
“Oh, wow.” I laughed quietly. “And they’ve been married ever since, obviously?”
“For thirty-eight years now. Dad was actually on his second tour in ‘Nam when Annika was born. He missed the entire first year of her life because of the war.” Eric confessed. “I think that’s part of what got to him so much when she died. He’d already missed a year of her life and then she died so young…” He trailed off and I grabbed his hand.
“That’s got to be hard.” I agreed with him.
“I don’t know if he’d change it, though. He loved being a Marine.”
“So why did he retire?” I had to ask.
“For Mom. She wanted to have him to herself before they were too old to enjoy it.” Eric smiled over at me.
I slid over on the bench seat and put my head on his shoulder. “Sounds like they really love one another.”
“They do.” Eric kissed the top of my head and I smiled.
Eric drove on without so much as a hint of where we were going. I knew what direction we were going but I had no idea where we would end up. And then when Eric started to shift in his seat, I moved away from him a little bit. His eyes started searching the side of the road. When he smiled beside me, I knew he’d found whatever he was looking for. My eyes followed where his were looking and I couldn’t help but smile too.
“The drive-in?” I laughed.
“The only one that’s open north of I-80.” He turned left to pull into the lot.
Cars were lined up ahead of us waiting to get in. “I haven’t been to a drive-in since I was a little kid! I didn’t think these were open anymore.”
“There are very few of them.” Eric agreed.
“So what are we seeing?” I looked around for a board that would tell us what was playing, but saw nothing.
“They do double features on Friday and tonight is James Dean night.”
“So that’s why we’re in this car?”
Eric laughed and said, “Well, that’s part of it. Mostly, it’s more because I don’t think it’d be that comfortable to sit in the Corvette for that long.”
“Especially if someone starts feeling frisky?”
“There’s that, too.” He acknowledged. Frisky indeed.
The thought of fooling around with Eric in the middle of a crowded drive-in was more exciting to me than I would ever admit out loud. It also made me wonder what it was about him that made me so willing to forget about modesty and self-control. I couldn’t think right when I was around him and the ability to keep myself at arm’s length was rapidly decreasing. The weight of his stare didn’t go unnoticed.
“What?” I asked when I turned my face toward his.
“Nothing.” He shook his head. Oh, he was thinking something alright and I was pretty sure it was something similar to what I was thinking.
“Hey.” I reached up and turned his face toward mine.
The next thing I knew we were making out and didn’t pull apart until cars started up around us to gain admittance to the outdoor theater. Slowly we moved forward. When I attempted to give Eric money for my ticket he pushed my hand away.
“You promised I could pay next time.” I reminded him. I didn’t feel comfortable with him paying for everything.
“I said you could pay the next time we went to dinner. This isn’t dinner.”
My mouth gaped open but rather than argue with me any further he just leaned over and kissed my cheek. That smug, high handed, son of a…
“You’ll catch flies if you stay like that.” Eric warned, having no idea how much he sounded like my Gran when he said it.
I didn’t know if I wanted to punch him or kiss him just then so I did both. He laughed and then drove to a spot that was a little out of the way but still had a good view of the giant screen. I tried to remember the last movie I’d seen at a drive-in. If I remembered right, it was Batman back when I was maybe five-years-old.
Eric turned off the car and then climbed out. “Where are you going?”
“I have provisions on the trunk.” He carefully opened the lid and appeared a few seconds later with a couple of plastic bags.
“What’s all this?” I asked when he handed them to me.
“Dinner.” He shrugged.
“Next time you can pay. I promise.” He gave me a sly smile and I had a feeling it wasn’t going to happen.
He began to sort through the bags and handed me a sandwich. I got a little nervous since I could be picky about that kind of thing. I was one of a few people in the world- or so it seemed- that didn’t like mayonnaise on my sandwiches. But since Eric had gone to the trouble of getting me dinner and surprising me the way he had, I would keep my mouth shut and deal with it. It wouldn’t kill me.
“Have you ever been to Al & Joe’s?” Eric asked me and my face lit up.
“These are from Al & Joe’s? I love their subs!” I unwrapped mine quickly. They used the most amazing bread for their sandwiches. Say you what you will about the evil that is carbohydrates, but I loved bread too much to give it up in favor of a slightly smaller waistline.
The little deli was legendary in the area. Students were constantly trying to sneak off campus to go there for lunch since it was only a few blocks away from the high school. The place was always packed and on the weekends, it wasn’t uncommon to see a line around the block and people standing up and down the street while eating their lunch.
“So what’s on this?” I tried not to sound too nervous about it.
“Turkey, lettuce, tomato, bacon and white American cheese. No mayo.”
My jaw dropped.
“How did you…” I trailed off. Amelia! He must have asked her. No way did he guess so accurately. “Thank you, Eric.”
“You’re welcome.” He reached into the bag and produced a bag of cheddar harvest Sun Chips and a coke. Perfect. I would have to remember to thank Amelia for this later.
We talked while we ate. He wouldn’t show me what was in the second bag but insisted I would like it. I could only imagine. After we were done eating Eric rolled up one of his windows and clipped a speaker to it. The movie was supposed to be starting in the next ten minutes.
“Top up or down?” Eric asked me.
I thought it over for a minute before saying, “Down.”
I knew if he put the top up the probability of us having sex in the back seat was high, and while that would definitely be something I’d be willing to negotiate later, I didn’t want it to be like that just yet. I slipped off my gym shoes and curled up next to Eric on the seat. Sitting in the Comet was definitely better than the Corvette.
The first movie shown was Rebel Without A Cause, which I’d seen more than once on account of Gran. She loved old movies and I would go with her once a month to see what was playing at an old revival theater in Shreveport. Unfortunately, Bon Temps was too small for a theater of its own. It was a big deal when we finally got a Starbucks when I was about fifteen but it didn’t stay open for too long. People didn’t want to pay five dollars for a cup of coffee when they could just make it at home themselves for much cheaper. Not to mention, I was of the opinion the coffee was better at home anyway.
We managed to get a half hour into the movie before we gave up on it and started making out like teenagers in the front seat of the car. The bench seat allowed us plenty of room and before I knew it, I was on my back with Eric on top of me. I was thankful I had Gran’s old blanket. I was using it as a pillow. Eric’s hands slowly found their way inside my sweater. He palmed my breasts before stroking my already hard nipples with his thumbs. I groaned against him and decided to let my hands do a little feeling of their own.
It didn’t take long before we got to a point where we had to stop. I broke off the kiss we were in the middle of and turned my face toward the back of the seat. “Eric,” I whispered and ran my fingers through his hair.
I felt him deflate a little against me and then inhale sharply. My eyes found his and I could tell stopping was as difficult for him as it was for me. He pulled back and sat up. I stayed where I was for a moment. I was afraid to move. A small war was going on inside of me. My head told me to take a deep breath and cool off. My body wanted none of that. In the end, it was my heart that settled the score.
Eric wasn’t just a one night stand anymore and I knew that whatever happened in the car would only lead to better things later. I liked him. He liked me. We’d each said we wanted to make things work and we wanted to move forward. So far, I was the one holding us back and something told me that if I didn’t quit it with the mixed signals he was going to get sick of me. I didn’t want to go further just to appease him but I didn’t want to hold back just to prove that I could. So the question, very simply, was what did I want?
The answer was just as simple. I wanted Eric. I smiled at my decision and felt something in my heart soften. I relaxed and sat up, pulling myself up onto my knees. I moved across the seat and brushed some of Eric’s hair out of the way so I had access to his ear. His hair smelled like coconuts and I wanted to lick him. Instead, I nibbled on his earlobe and whispered to him.
“I think you should put the top up.” I gave him a wet kiss on his neck and then climbed into the back seat.
Eric stayed where he was for a moment and just as I was about to panic, he opened his door. He as much calmer than I was at that moment. He moved methodically and got the top of the car fastened into place before joining me in the back seat. Watching him climb over the front seat was entertaining, to say the least. His long body just wasn’t meant to be quite that agile. I unzipped my sweater and threw it into the front seat before reaching under my shirt to unhook my bra. I pulled the straps down my arms without taking off my shirt and then deposited the lacy contraption in the front seat with my sweater. Eric’s eyes never left mine.
I climbed into his lap so I was straddling him. “Sookie, take your hair down.” He whispered gruffly, and I did as he asked.
I put the elastic around my wrist where it usually lived. There was a permanent line from having it there for the better part of my twenty-five years. Eric’s hands slipped into my hair, his fingers running through it to gently work out the tangles before pulling my face closer to his. Our eyes met again and it amazed me how easy it was to read him all of a sudden. It was like everything I was feeling I could see reflected in his eyes and I couldn’t stop myself from smiling. He smiled back at me and then I dove forward.
The kisses were deep and passionate and quickly had me grinding against Eric. I could feel his arousal under every sway of my hips and after a few minutes my hands moved down from his very chiseled chest to the fly of his jeans. His lips moved down my neck to the spot under my ear that always drove me a little crazy and he set up camp. I got his jeans open only to find he’d gone commando. I gulped for air and pulled back to take off my t-shirt. I barely got it into the front seat before Eric pulled me back to him.
While his mouth went to my chest his hands worked to unbutton my jeans, too. I bent to kiss his neck while my hands freed the very hard length from his pants and started to stroke him. He moaned with his lips still closed around my nipple, sending a shiver down my spine. I touched his cheek with my free hand and he released my breast to kiss me. I tightened my grip on him just a little and stroked a little faster. He growled against me when my hips rocked against him.
“Sookie,” There was warning in his voice and I shifted my position, getting on my knees beside him on the seat instead of straddling him. “What are you doing?”
I pulled his face to mine and kissed him hard. When I pulled back his eyes were starry and I sank down to take him in my mouth. He hissed at the sensation of it. He surprised me when his hand found its way into my jeans and his fingers started rubbing tight circles around my clit. I moaned around his length, and felt him shudder under me. My thighs rubbed together to gather more friction and I cursed myself for not wearing a skirt.
Eric groaned, his free hand cradling the back of my head, but not forcing it down. I opened my eyes to see his stomach muscles tighten and I felt him swelling in my mouth. He grunted loudly and then he released. Powerfully. I heard him gasping for air but I didn’t stop stroking right away. When I released him from my mouth he pulled my face up to his and looked deep into my eyes while his fingers continued their ministrations in my panties. I climbed back into his lap and our lips met as my climax found me.
I bit his bottom lip as my breasts pressed against him. He stroked me a bit harder, pushing me over the edge. I cried out as I went limp against him, sucking in air in between the kisses I pressed to his neck. He lifted my face again, our lips locking until we couldn’t breathe anymore. He withdrew his hand from my jeans and put his fingers in his mouth. My breath caught in my throat, watching his eyes as he licked his fingers.
“Delicious.” He smiled at me and I felt myself blush.
“Come on, let’s go home.” I urged him as I climbed off his lap.
“Yes, Miss Stackhouse.” He pecked me once more and then climbed into the front seat.