The Replacement

I stand in the middle of the spare bedroom that has become something of a closet for Eric Northman over the last two years and wait for him to come out of the bathroom. What the hell is taking him so long? I only gave him a pair of jeans, a t-shirt and a sport coat to try on. The coat will probably need tailoring, but the shirt should be fine and so should the jeans. I’ve been dressing Eric for the last three years. I know his tastes, sizes and waaaay more about his inseam than the average bear.

“Eric?” I call out, wondering what the fuck is keeping him. “You didn’t zipper your trouser snake by mistake, did you?”

“Very funny!” he shouts back.

He hates trying on clothes. He hates having a stylist, but I don’t take it personally. Actually, I think it’s more that he hates that he needs a stylist. But hey, if it wasn’t for his inability to dress himself properly for public events, I would be out of a job. Getting on Team Northman was no easy feat, let me tell you, and there are thousands of stylists that would bludgeon a kitten for my job… and then make mittens out of its fur.

“If you hate it you don’t have to wear it,” I say and reach over to the rack for another option I’ve brought along. “I have several-” I stop talking when the bathroom door opens and Eric appears.

God. Damn. It.

Eric is my boss, kind of sort of, at least in the capacity that he decides if I keep working for him or not, but I’m really an independent consultant. I can drop him just as easily. The real threat on Team Northman isn’t Northman at all, but Pam Ravenscroft, his hell on heels PR person. She’s what keeps the S.S. Northman afloat, and at the moment all I can think about is Eric’s longboat docking in my port.

“What do you think?” Eric asks and I realize I’ve missed most of what he’s said.

“What?” I shake my head, trying to clear those dirty thoughts from my mind.

His large hands rise and he fiddles with the cuffs of the jacket. God those hands. Unnnnf.

“I’m not sure I like the color of this shirt,” he tells me, and looks up from the cuffs. “What do you think?”

“Your eyes,” I say immediately. “It brings out your eyes.”

“Oh,” he says absently.

Of course he doesn’t realize how good looking he is which is part of what makes him so damn attractive in the first place. I remember when I first got the call from Pam I had myself a little fangirl moment. I had been a faithful watcher of the medical drama that Eric was on at the time. He played a surgeon, so every week there were these extreme close ups of his hands. Considering how big they are Eric moved them so gracefully. And then the intensity of his pretty eyes, which sometimes look deep like the ocean, sometimes bright like the sky and still other times when I swear I see a hint of green in them too. I could spend hours studying his eyes and be satisfied. Even worse? The guy speaks like four languages.

He was raised in Sweden and apparently German is very similar. He learned French for another role and then there’s English. Of course when he calls his family back home he mostly speaks Swedish and I don’t think I need to tell you that it completely ruins my panties, or my ability to think straight.

But alas, I have never had the balls to tell Eric that I have a thing for him. I’m sure he’s figured it out by now, or at the very least he assumes I rode the short bus to school. Whatever the case may be, he has never flirted with me or acknowledged my crush that would rival any fourteen-year-old girl flipping through the pages of Tiger Beat. Do girls still look at that?

Fuck, I feel old.

“But if you don’t like it I have other things for you to try,” I say and extend my arm to show off a v-neck aqua sweater that will also look amazing with his eyes.

Eric takes it from me and when his fingers brush against mine I feel this jolt of electricity. Eric jerks his arm away but avoids looking into my eyes. Shit, did he feel that too, or has he finally gotten sick of me gawking at him like some psycho?

He peels off the jacket, sets the sweater to the side and then takes off the t-shirt. Right there. In front of me. No warning, just hello nipples! I have never wanted to devour someone so much in my whole life. I should be beyond this, honestly. I’m almost thirty, for fuck’s sake!

You know, child bearing years.

And I bet Eric will make some beautiful ones. I even have the perfect hips for carrying what I’m sure would be giant fetuses.

Again I shake my head and consider jumping in his pool when he’s not looking, even though a cold shower would be preferable, even better if he volunteered to wash my back and then…

Fuck, what was I thinking about again?

Eric puts the sweater on and I damn near have an orgasm just looking at him. Holy fucksticks.

“Does the drool mean you approve, or that you had a stroke?” Pam asks from the doorway and I want hiss at her, but Frau Ravenscroft isn’t the bitch to mess with.

“Be nice, Pam,” Eric comes to my aid.

I’d like to return the favor by helping him wrestle the trouser snake into another pair of tight jeans. I sigh when I realize that isn’t going to happen.

“This looks a little too Live! With Kelly for my taste,” Pam says as she inspects Eric’s outfit. “The Scream Awards aren’t that fancy.”

“Pam, if you want him to look homeless and unwashed, go find the bitch who styles those Twilight kids,” I tell her and she smirks.

“What is the look you’re going for?” Pam asks.

“Hot nerd,” I say immediately. Not only do I think it’s hot in general, but Eric happens to rock the fuck out of it.

“That better not be code for hipster,” Eric says and I raise an eyebrow.

Where the fuck did he learn that word?

“I don’t want to wear Pam’s jeans,” he says.

“There’d be too much room in the crotch,” I say before Pam can get another one of her zingers in there. Two can play at her game.

Eric throws his head back and laughs while Pam actually smirks over the fact that I’ve just insinuated that her dick is bigger than Eric’s. Well, metaphorically speaking. I don’t think that’s literally possible.

“What are you doing here anyway?” Eric asks Pam.

“Your date for the award show came down with the flu,” she says. “By that I mean she’s checked into rehab in Utah.”

I would find it curious that Pam knows about this before Eric, but I suppose it’s her job to know these things. Besides, Eric’ date for this event was arranged by his manager, Ocella, who is the biggest buttmunch I’ve ever met. The guy is constantly staring at my tits and talking down to Eric like he wouldn’t be anywhere without him. Yeah, right.

It was Ocella’s great idea for Eric to take some stupid rom com role last year and it damn near derailed Eric’s career. Don’t get me wrong, Eric is definitely leading man material, but McDreamy he’s not. It isn’t his thing and it showed in all the press he had to do. It didn’t help that he can’t stand the actress he was cast opposite. Lorena Ball is just… Hell, I don’t even know how to describe her, but whoever was in charge of doing their chemistry test must have been high that day because there was nothing sparking between them. I have more chemistry with my vibrator than Eric did with Lorena.

“Then I’ll just go alone,” Eric says with a shrug.

“No, you need a date,” Pam insists. “We’re still going damage control from that shitastic movie Ocella insisted you do.”

Eric rolls his eyes and peels off the sweater. He puts it back on the hanger before giving it to me. Again our fingers touch and again I feel that damn jolt.

So. Not. Fair.

“It’s bullshit, Pam. I don’t give a fuck what TMZ thinks of my personal life. And I really don’t care if someone thinks I’m gay,” he says defiantly.

I respect him for this. There are plenty of guys in Hollywood that panic over gay rumors, and those are usually the closet cases that don’t want to admit it to themselves, much less the entire world that they like cock.

Before I know what’s happening Pam says, “You have to go with someone. Preferably a girl and even more specifically, a hot one. Hell, you could go with Sookie.”

Say what?

“What?” Eric and I say in unison and then stare at each other.

“I couldn’t ask her to do that,” Eric says quickly.

“And I’m sure Eric can find a better date than me,” I shake my head.

Pam looks back and forth between us smugly and says, “No, I like you two together. You’re the right amount of beautiful and since you know each other you won’t be all fifty shades of awkward on the red carpet.”

I stand there catching flies, trying to come up with an argument for why I’m an awful choice for this, but my brain is too focused on the idea that I might actually be going on a date with Eric, even if it’s an arranged date.

I keep quiet while Eric and Pam argue, but as always, Pam gets her way.

“Sookie, are you free tonight?” she asks me.

“Well I don’t-”

“Good, then it’s settled. You’ll go with Eric to the awards,” Pam claps her hands. “My work here is done. Have fun kids. Oh, and Eric,” she says on her way out the door. “If you kiss her anywhere near a camera, make sure you mean it.”

My eyebrows shoot into my hairline and Eric looks like he wants to punch Pam square in the face, but then she disappears. I stand there feeling like I’ve just been hit by a freight train.

“How did that just happen?” I mutter.

“I ask myself that all the time,” Eric says. “Look, if you don’t want to go you don’t have to. Pam can just get over it. I don’t want to keep you from your other plans.”

“No other plans,” I admit. “But if you’re uncomfortable with it-”

“I’m not,” he cuts me off.

Dare I say there’s a hint of a smile on his face?

“So,” he clears his throat and gestures to the rack of clothes. “Which one do you like the most?”

I don’t even have to think about it.

“This.” I grab a pair of dark washed jeans that I know will make his amazing ass look bitable, and they’re paired with a black tank top and leather jacket.

Eric takes the ensemble from me and slides the jacket off the hanger before claiming the tank top. He pulls the shirt on and when he goes for the button on the jeans he’s wearing I turn around quickly.

“Sookie, I’m Swedish. Nudity doesn’t bother me,” he says.

Not. Helping.

“In fact, I like being naked,” he confesses shamelessly.

Does he want me to strip down with him? Because it wouldn’t take much to convince me to do it, that’s for damn sure.

I hear the sounds of jeans coming off and then going back on.

“Okay,” he says, but when I turn around I notice that he hasn’t buttoned his jeans.

“Uh, Eric, you’re not quite done there,” I point.

“You’re a stylist. You can help,” he wiggles his eyebrows.

I want to get excited over the flirting but figure he’s just practicing for later. Well, I suppose I should too. You know, so it looks natural. I step closer to him and stare up into his eyes while I adjust his jeans and get them buttoned. Amazingly my hands aren’t shaking, but my throat has gone dry. Eric’s eyes are intense and that dark, stormy shade of blue.

“Thank you, Sookie,” he says in a low, sex-filled voice that sends the second rip tide of the day out into my panties.

“You’re welcome,” I say and when my hands move down they accidentally graze over something that shouldn’t be that far north. I suck in a deep breath and quickly turn around to gather everything up.

When Eric clears his throat again I turn to see he’s added the jacket to the outfit and I whimper at how good he looks. Cheese and rice.

“What do you think?” I ask him.

“I think you should stop torturing that poor lip of yours,” he says as he comes dangerously close to me. Like within handjob giving distance and says, “Maybe I should kiss it better.”


I hold my breath as Eric starts to lean down to make good on his suggestion. His lips are just a breath away from mine when his phone rings. “Master of Puppets” starts to play. Pam is calling. Eric and I both burst out laughing. It really was a brilliant choice of ringtones.

“What, Pam?” Eric all but barks when he answers. He rolls his eyes and says, “No, I won’t do that. I don’t give a fuck. Pam, I’ve gotta go. I’ll call you tomorrow. Yeah. Okay. Uh huh,” he rolls his eyes again and makes that hand gesture for someone is talking too damn much. Finally he gives up and just hangs up on her. “Swear to God I’m having her number blocked.”

I laugh and say, “It’s okay. I should get going anyway.”

“Should I pick you up? There’s a car coming here at six,” he says.

“I can come back here. Might save us some time since I’m out in Santa Monica.”

“Right,” he nods.

“But I will make sure I’m here before six,” I promise him. “Are you really sure you want to do this?”

“It’s one date,” he shrugs. “How bad can it get?”

In Hollywood, anything is possible.



Why am I pacing?

For the last fifteen minutes I’ve been watching the clock and wearing a track in my living room floor. I shouldn’t be nervous. Granted this is the first time I’ve been nominated for a Scream Award, but still… I know that’s not why I’m pacing. I’m pacing because of the hot blonde girl I’m waiting on.

Pam had been on me for months before I agreed to hire Sookie. If I’m honest, I agreed to give her a chance without even meeting her. Just her name, Sookie Stackhouse, intrigued me. In a business full of less than extraordinary people trying to market themselves as something not to be missed, I just wanted something normal. And while the name wasn’t terribly common, there was something honest about it. If her name wasn’t real at least it didn’t sound like she was trying too hard.

Then I saw her.

I never complained about having a stylist on my payroll after that. Calling Sookie beautiful would almost be an insult. I wouldn’t say that she’s the typical definition of beauty these days since she’s probably overweight by those standards, but I’ll take a girl with curves and won’t blow away in a stiff breeze any day. And I would hardly call Sookie fat, just so we’re clear.

There’s a buzz at my gate, and when I look at the security monitor I see Sookie’s face but she isn’t in the same SUV I’m used to seeing her drive. The car she’s in is much lower to the ground and rumbles. I’m intrigued already. I buzz her in and the gate opens for her. Rather than waiting inside I go out and wait for her car to pull up. It bothers me sometimes that my house in LA requires a gate, but it keeps photographers from getting on my property.

A shiny yellow car comes to a stop in front of the house and I’m not familiar enough with American muscle cars to know what I’m looking at, but the car looks like it was built for racing. There are black stripes on the hood and I’m willing to bet the car goes pretty damn fast. The engine shuts off, taking what sounded like Ryan Adams along with it. The door creaks open and Sookie steps out of the car as I walk around to the driver’s side.

I’ve got the same outfit on as when she left, but Sookie has changed clothes. She’s ditched her usual professional clothing I see her in and she looks much more relaxed, more like herself. She’s got on a pair of tight jeans and a black corset with red lace that leaves her ample cleavage and shoulders bare. I’ve always known she’s got a great rack, but the top she’s got on makes it hard to ignore. My jeans start to get tighter, and I have to think about something else before I reach full chub status. She seems to sparkle a little in the fading daylight and when she smiles she’s absolutely luminous.

“You look great,” I smile at her as she smoothes herself over.

It takes everything I have in me not to dive face first into her cleavage. At least I’m sure I would have a safe landing.

“Thanks,” she grins with perfectly straight and pearly white teeth. “So do you.”

“What? This old thing?” I snicker and run my hands over the tank top she dressed me in.

Sookie laughs and I swear I fall in love with her a little right there. I’ve had a crush on her for the entire time I’ve known her, but I never made a move. I’ve thought about it, but my schedule isn’t really conducive to a relationship and Sookie doesn’t strike me as the kind of girl who does the casual thing. I travel too damn much between work and going home to visit family. I’m also sure that with a girl like her, I wouldn’t be able to do the casual thing either. Sookie isn’t from LA, judging by her accent, so at least we have that in common. She’s from the south but I don’t know where, exactly.

The car service comes to the gate and I go inside to let the car pass. I feel a little like a dick since I’m not really prepared for this date. My original date was all about publicity. There is nothing going on with me and Isabel Santos. I’ve only met her once and she was stoned out of her mind at the time. I gather that the point of us being seen together was to dispel any rumors about my sexuality and to give Isabel a more stable image since she’s been in and out of rehab a handful of times in her short career. Frankly, I’m glad she’s off the wagon. I don’t need to get involved in her hot mess of a life.

The car comes up the driveway and I spot Sookie getting a jacket from the passenger’s seat of her car. It’s way too easy to picture her naked and bent over while I fuck her from behind. Again, I have to talk myself down before she stands up, puts the jacket on and then grabs her purse before closing the door. When she turns around she looks a little nervous like she’s trying to settle herself. I pause for a minute just to watch her, but I stare for too long and she catches me looking at her. Sookie’s cheeks flame and I look away quickly. She follows me over to the waiting car, and I let her get in first.

“So is this the first awards show you’re going to?” I ask her once we’re settled in the back of the car.

“No,” she smiles softly. “I went to the MTV Movie Awards last year with John Quinn. Hopefully this will be a better experience though.”

I know John Quinn. We did a sci-fi action movie together two years ago. I now understand why the term ‘meathead’ was invented. He came onto everything on set that had tits. We worked together but we didn’t become buddies. Not even close.

“I take it you and Quinn didn’t hit it off?” I ask her.

“We met at the gym and he seemed alright so when he asked me out I agreed. The movie awards were our third and final date. He fucked a stagehand, Eric. He was getting ready to present an award and he nailed the girl during a commercial break,” she tells me.

“What a dick,” I shake my head.

“I took a cab home after I told him to never call me again. I also switched gyms.”

It’s good to know that Sookie doesn’t stand for that kind of shit. There are a lot of girls out here that are willing to put up with anything if it means they get their fifteen minutes. Sookie, on the other hand, seems to be content to remain behind the scenes. I’ve never heard her talking about going on auditions, getting headshots or anything like that. Then again, the amount of serious conversation we’ve had over the course of our relationship has been limited. Mostly we make small talk and discuss what sort of image I want to put out there. She dresses me accordingly and then goes on with her life.

I only really get to see her during award season and when I’ve got press or premiers coming up that I need to be dressed in something other than jeans and a t-shirt for. When I’m at home, just hanging out I’m not at all fancy. I have a tendency to wear the same things over and over again, and I can’t remember the last time I bought a new pair of jeans on my own. I’ve been told it’s because I’m not a born and bred American, but I think it’s just common sense. Why would I buy more than I need?

Yes, I have the money to pay for it but why be wasteful?

“So where are you from?” I ask her since I’ve always wanted to know but never asked.

“Bon Temps, Louisiana,” she says with a smile. “It’s about an hour east of Shreveport, which is in the northwest part of the state. There are less than a thousand people in my hometown. I don’t think it’s even on a map.”

“That’s a small town,” I nod, and she agrees.

“What about you?” she asks, even though I’m sure she knows. I still appreciate the fact that she asks.

“Stockholm,” I tell her, and she smiles. “What?”

“I always wondered what language it is you were speaking. I thought it was Swedish but I wasn’t sure.”

“Do you speak Swedish?” My eyes go wide. If she speaks Swedish I’m marrying her. End of discussion.

I might whisper dirty things in Swedish in her ear all night just because I can.

“No,” she admits with a hint of a blush. “But it sounds like a beautiful language.”

“It is,” I nod. “Do you speak anything other than English?”

“Uh, I took French in high school, but I don’t know enough to say that I’m fluent in the language. Mostly I speak redneck,” she confesses, and it makes me laugh.

I like her. I like her a lot—maybe too much.

“You have a beautiful laugh,” I tell her, and her blush deepens.

“So do you get to see your family a lot?” Sookie asks, completely changing the subject on me.

“I fly back as often as I can. I haven’t had much time for it recently but I’m hoping that I’ll be able to get back for Christmas this year,” I say. I wasn’t able to go home for Christmas the year before because of my schedule, so I had to settle for doing the family thing by Skype.

“Do you have a big family?”

“I do,” I laugh. “I have four brothers and three sisters.”

“Jiminy Christmas,” she mutters with eyes as wide as saucers and I laugh again. “Where do you fall in line?”

“I’m baby number three,” I tell her. “I have a brother and a sister ahead of me. Signe is the oldest and my youngest sister Heidi is the baby of the bunch. She’ll be nine in January.”

“Whoa,” Sookie’s eyes get wider.

“There’s a twenty-five-year age difference between Signe and Heidi,” I explain. “My mother had Signe when she was sixteen.”

“Wow. That’s… wow,” she says and that’s a common reaction. “I mean, I’m twenty-seven and just the idea of having one scares me. I couldn’t imagine having a bunch.”

“By then Mom had five kids,” I tell her.

“Oh hell no,” Sookie shakes her head. “No offense, but that is completely insane.”

“I agree, believe me. There’s a reason why I don’t have kids myself.”

“Do you want them?” she asks.

“Yeah, I do. It’s fun going home and playing with my littler siblings. And now I’ve got nieces and nephews since Signe is married. She’s got three girls and my brother, Jens, has a son.”

“Christmas at your house is going to be nuts,” Sookie laughs.

“It always has been. What about you?”

“Oh, I uh, I don’t have a very big family. I only have one brother. My parents are divorced, and my mother has remarried, but she hasn’t had any more kids. So there’s my Gran nearby, my Aunt Linda and her daughter, Hadley. Hadley’s married and has a little boy named Hunter. My brother’s got a daughter with his ex-wife, but it’s usually a pretty small family gathering,” she tells me. “I always wanted more siblings when I was growing up though. Jason and I were the odd ones out since most families had at least four kids.”

“And I used to wish I was an only child,” I confess.

“Yeah, I bet you did,” she laughs again and it’s hard not to stare at the bobbing of her breasts peeking out of her corset every time her shoulders heave. “I couldn’t imagine growing up with that many brothers and sisters. I wanted like, one or two more, not six.”

“I didn’t get a vote,” I snicker. “But by the time the twins and Heidi came along I was already out of the house.”

Sookie shifts on the seat so she’s angled toward me a little more and I can’t help but notice how good she smells, like a sunny day with a hint of flowers. I know this smell; I’ve gotten accustomed to it over the years I’ve known her. I love that it lingers in my house for hours after she’s been over. There are all these little things about her that I’ve been crazy about for years, and yet I can’t help but wonder if she really wants to be here with me, or if she’s just doing it because Pam essentially forced her to.

I decide to go out on a limb and ask, “So what does your boyfriend think about the two of us going to this awards thing together?”

Sookie’s smile freezes for a second and then she says, “I’m not seeing anyone at the moment, so you’re not stepping on any toes.”

Good to know, although why she’s still single is baffling to me. All the same, every other stupid man’s misjudgment is my gain. It dawns on me that we could have done this a long time ago, just to try it out, if I wasn’t such a pussy when it comes to this woman. For whatever reason she’s got me running scared and that isn’t usually my style at all.

“What about you? No secret Swedish Bikini Team girlfriend chillin’ back in Stockholm?” she asks me.

“Ha! No, definitely not,” I laugh. “I haven’t had time for a relationship in… way too long.”

“So that’s why the rumors?” Sookie asks, and I shrug.

“I don’t really pay attention to them. Pam tries to make me but I don’t really care what anyone thinks. The way I see it, I’m damned if I do and damned if I don’t where women are concerned. If I get spotted with too many girls then I’m either trying too hard to cover something up, or I’m a manwhore who can’t control himself. If I stay single for too long it’s because I’m a closet case. Bottom line is that my personal life isn’t anyone’s business and I don’t feel like I need to prove myself to those vampires just so they can cash in on it,” I tell her, probably a little more forcefully than I should have. Sookie looks away with the expression of someone who’s been chastised and I say, “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to bark at you. You didn’t say anything wrong.”

“Maybe not, but you’re still right. Your personal life isn’t my business,” she says, her eyes still trained on the window.

“Sookie,” I reach for her hand and the second I touch her, I feel her flinch. Her eyes find mine again almost as if there’s some type of magnetic force pulling them my way. “I don’t mind that you asked. You were just being curious. That’s normal. Besides, I’m sure people will ask about it once we get there; it’s the nature of the beast.”

She nods and says, “Well, for what it’s worth, I think the rumors are ridiculous. I mean, I’ve never seen Lorena Ball have much chemistry with anyone so I don’t really think it’s fair to assume that it’s because you’re gay. Oh! But if you really want to have fun screwing with the paparazzi I have a friend who would love to meet you.”

“Is that right?” I smirk.

She nods faster and says, “Lafayette hounds me for details every time I see you. He’s got a bit of a thing for you.”

I’m more interested in whether or not Sookie feels this way than her friend, but she doesn’t mention whether or not she does. And again, I’m too big of a pussy to ask her.

We get caught up in a little bit of traffic, but arrive at the awards about halfway through the red carpet shit so we won’t have to stop for too many pictures. Since this show isn’t covered by mainstream media we don’t have to deal with as many cameras as we would if we were at the Oscars or the Golden Globes. This is much more relaxed than the other events I’ve been to, and there’s someone standing by to check us in when we get out of the car.

I reach for Sookie’s hand, which she willingly gives, and she follows me down the carpet. When photographers start shouting my name and flash bulbs go off, Sookie squeezes my hand and sort of cowers behind me. I look over my shoulder to see her trying to hide, but I pull her out into the spotlight. Immediately the questions start, and I lean down to say, “Just smile. You’ll be fine.”

“Uh huh,” she says nervously, but does as I ask.

I kiss her forehead and the photogs go nuts wanting to know who my new girl is.



The Scream Awards are absolutely insane. I’ve watched them on TV before but seeing it live is something else all together. All of the people dressed up in costumes make me feel like I’m at a miniature version of Comic Con or Fangoria or something instead of an awards show. There’s a lot of energy in the atmosphere but it’s not nearly as stuffy or pretentious as some of the mainstream events. Anyone who isn’t in costume is dressed pretty much they way they would be on street instead of in designer gowns or tuxedos.

There’s no one from E!’s fashion police outside asking who’s wearing what or anything like that. It almost reminds me of the notable awards given out at the senior brunch before I graduated from high school… if you don’t count all the space aliens and sci-fi creatures roaming around. The people working the event, ushers, I guess, are all dressed like a futuristic version of the Mad Hatter, which is pretty cool. The set where the awards are being presented is nothing short of amazing and I wonder how long it took to come up with the concept and then actually construct the stage. There are lifts, backdrops, crazy lighting and some digital images that keep your eyes drawn to the stage.

Mostly I’m thankful when Eric leads me to the bar and we both pick up a beer because I could definitely use a little something to calm my nerves. Being close to Eric is one of those paradox things because on the one hand there’s the fangirl in me that’s totally dying of lust and then there’s the part of me that’s terrified I’m going to somehow fuck this up for him. So far he’s been nice to me. He’s flirted a little bit, which still makes me wonder if it’s genuine or if he’s just playing a part.

I’m too chicken shit to ask.

Pam texts us both to check in and see how things are going and Eric tells her to fuck off and leave us alone. I’m sure that isn’t going to go over well, and when she texts me for a third time Eric takes my phone and puts it in his pocket. Not his jacket pocket, in his jeans.

“If you want it, you’re going to have to come and get it,” he says with a devilish smirk.

Don’t tempt me.

“Pam’s just worried about you, that’s all,” I try to reason with him.

“I’m a big boy,” he shrugs.

He’s right about that. I know for a fact.

“So what are you nominated for again?” I ask when we find our seats after downing our first beer and picking up a second to take with us.

“Best villain,” he says. “Honestly, I hope I don’t win. I didn’t prepare a speech or anything for it.”

My eyes widen and I say, “Uh, you might want to think of something just in case.”

He just shrugs, and a moment later the house lights go down and the show starts. The intro is pretty amazing and I get sucked into watching everything going on around me. A few other famous people come over to say hello to Eric and he introduces me to them as his date and not his stylist, or a friend. I smile, shake hands, make small talk and try not to be a total spazz. I get to meet a few people I have always wanted to meet and a few I’m hoping I never have to see again.

Eric’s award is presented at the halfway point of the show and I can tell the entire time we’re waiting for the announcement that he’s hoping he doesn’t win. I find his aversion to attention interesting considering his chosen profession. I almost want to ask if no one explained that this would be a part of it when he got started, but I keep my comments to myself. I don’t live in the spotlight the way he does; I just dress him for it.

“And the winner is Eric Northman!”

I grin for him and being the actor he is, he slaps on a happy face before he stands up. What surprises me is when turns and leans down to kiss my cheek and he whispers, “You jinxed me.”

I can’t help but scoff and laugh at his reaction, and there is serious temptation to slap his ass when he turns toward the stage again, but I don’t do it. There’s playing along and then there’s assault. Eric makes his way through the crowd, pausing to shake hands with one person or another or accept a kiss on the cheek from someone he knows. By the time he makes it to the stage I realize my hands are shaking a little bit, but I’m not sure why.

He accepts his award from the woman at the podium-type thing that looks like a mechanical Venus Fly Trap sort of contraption and for a second I worry about what he’s going to say, but Eric does fine. He thanks the cast, crew, the director and of course the fans for their support and embracing his evil side, and that last bit is delivered with one of those smirks that makes my panties melt. Judging by some of the swooning and whistles going off in the crowd I’m not the only one experiencing technical difficulties between their legs.

I don’t even bother berating myself for having the inner commentary of a horny trucker anymore. What’s the point?

Eric leaves the stage, and I’m assuming, has to stop for pictures or something before he can return to his seat. It’s not like the Grammy’s where there’s press waiting to interview him, or so I assume. When he gets back to his seat it’s without his award.

“Where’s your spike?” I ask him.

There goes that devilish smirk again and he says, “It’s guarding your cell phone.”

“The Guardian’s not standing at attention,” I say before I can stop myself, and then bury my face in my hands.

I really just said that out loud.

Shoot me. Shoot me now, please.

Eric sits down again and says, “Lean a little closer to me and it’ll have a reason to salute.”

Our eyes meet and there again is that intensity that’s kept me wondering what the deal is with him. Maybe I’m thinking about it too much. What I do know is that Eric grabs my hand and proceeds to rub the inside of my wrist with his thumb. I hide behind him when they start showing the nominees for the grossest death scene. I like psychological thrillers, but gory slasher flicks aren’t really my thing. Eric doesn’t seem to mind that I’m using him as a human shield so I don’t have to see things that will give me nightmares until the day I die.

“I guess that means our second date won’t be a horror movie, huh?” he asks when I come out from behind him.

Second date?

Just call me Scooby with the way my ears all perk up at this suggestion.

“Second date?” I can’t help but repeat.

Eric just smiles and squeezes my hand before returning his attention to the stage. Okay, what the hell is going on? I try not to think about it too much and just enjoy the rest of the show, but it’s hard not to let my mind drift over to that. Is it possible that he’s been lusting after me for a while and I just never noticed it, or is this still just part of the game? I don’t know and it’s driving me crazy.

I decide there’s one way to know for sure, and when the show ends I figure I might as well go for broke. We walk out of the auditorium hand in hand, whether it’s because it’s what’s expected of us or because we like holding hands I don’t know. But the second we’re in the back of our car I make my move. Without warning I pounce on him.

It’s really simple. If Eric wants me he’ll kiss me back. If he doesn’t he’ll push me away. His lips are the right balance of soft and firm, and once the surprise of what I’ve done wears off, Eric kisses me back. His hands find their way into my hair and I end up straddling his lap.

The Guardian is at full salute.

I break the kiss to catch my breath and Eric just moves on to my neck. Oh good gravy. He doesn’t stop there either; he moves down to my chest and lays open mouth kisses on my cleavage. I shrug out of my jacket and drop it on the floor behind me. Eric’s hands move down my back and grab my ass.

I make a noise I can’t quite describe but when Eric looks up at me I lean in and kiss him again. He squeezes my ass and my own hands start exploring his chest and stomach. It’s one thing to look at him but feeling him is something else entirely. But I find I’m constantly aware of his roaming hands.

Eric breaks the kiss again and looks at me curiously, but I still see lust in his eyes.

“What?” I ask. I don’t know why he’s stopped.

“Are we really doing this?” he asks.

“Do you not want to?”

“I do. Do you?”

“For years,” I admit, and the surprise on his face is immediate.

“Years?” he looks stunned.

“Yeah,” I nod and my smile falters. When he says nothing I deflate and start to climb off of him.

“Wait,” he pulls me back. “I just… I didn’t know. If I would have I would have made a move.”

“You would?” Now I’m the one that’s shocked.

“Absolutely,” he grins.

“Oh.” That’s all I’ve got.

“So is there still not a boyfriend in the picture?” he asks.

“No, no boyfriend. I’m usually too busy for that,” I say and then realize how that must sound to him. “I mean, I could make the time, I just haven’t met anyone who was worth it.”

“Believe me, I understand,” he says.

We stare at each other for a minute. I have an idea of what his schedule is like. We’re sort of in the same business. At the very least we’re both part of the Hollywood machine. I’ve been on movie sets and I know how to dodge paparazzi. I’m not interested in his celebrity; just him.

I don’t need a commitment from him to keep the party going and I tell him that.

“I’m not opposed to being in a relationship, but we don’t have to make any decisions like that right now. I just like being with you,” I tell Eric. “But if you want to stop here I completely understand.”

“I don’t want to stop,” he says almost immediately.

“Good. Me either,” I smile, and lean in to kiss him.

We resume making out and we’re still going at it when the car pulls into his driveway. I climb off of him so we can get out of the car. He tips the driver and leads me to his front door. We’re barely inside the house when he pushes me up against the wall and pins my hands over my head. My breath catches and he looks me in my eyes when he speaks.

“I have wanted you for so long, Sookie,” he kisses my neck. “Every time I see you I get hard,” he says and grinds against me so I can feel it. He’s not kidding. “And when you got here tonight all I wanted to do was drag you inside, rip your clothes off and fuck you until I couldn’t move.”

Good God.

“So what are you waiting for?” I ask him since it’s the only thing I can think of to say.

He growls at me and I swear to God it’s the sexiest sound I’ve ever heard. Eric pulls me away from the wall by slipping his fingers down the front of my corset and tugging on it so I have no choice but to follow him. He jerks me closer to kiss me, and all traces of the slightly shy guy I know completely disappears. He leads me back to his bedroom, which I have never been in before, and I’m not at all surprised to see a bed that looks like it takes up more space than I had in my entire first apartment.

He spins me around so my back is to him, and kisses my neck while he unlaces the corset I’ve got on. When it comes loose I lift my arms so he can take it off of me. He drops it on the floor and his hands immediately cover my tits.

“Perfect,” he says when he cups them.

I turn my head to catch his lips while his fingers go to work rolling and pinching my nipples. My mind flashes on memories of those perfect hands of his. I don’t know what it is about this man’s hands, but Jesus do I find them incredibly sexy. I want them all over me.

But then he lets me go and says, “Touch yourself for me, Sookie.”

My eyes lock on his as my hands run up my sides. Eric starts to pull his jacket off, and my bottom lip finds its way between my teeth. The more I touch myself the more of his clothes come off. And Eric’s eyes are watching where my hands go. I, in turn, find myself watching his hands too.

When we’re evenly matched in the clothing department he crooks a finger for me to come closer again. I shake my head and stay right where I am. If he wants me he can come and get me. I put myself out there. I made my move. Now it’s his turn to get brave.

Eric reaches one of those big hands out and puts a finger through the loop at the waist of my jeans and pulls me closer. When I’m close enough his hands cover mine on my chest. I look up into his eyes, still dark and full of lust. His head dips down and his lips brush against mine a few times to get me to chase him, and I do. I can’t help it. Eric is a fan-fucking-tastic kisser.

His tongue slips into my mouth almost immediately, and his hands push mine out of the way so he can take over. My hands settle at his sides for a moment, but then start to move lightly up and down his ribs. I feel him smile against my lips.

“Ticklish?” I ask when the kiss breaks, but the goose bumps on his skin answer that question for me.

That’s adorable.

His head dips further down and blazes a wet trail along my neck until he gets to my chest. He looks up at me when his mouth starts playing with one of my nipples, and his fingers work to keep the other entertained until he can switch sides. I reach to start opening those jeans that make his ass look so damn good, and it’s no surprise to me when I find Eric doesn’t wear underwear. I’ve never seen him with them on, and I’ve seen him damn close to naked several times.

But rather than checking on the guardian I move to other territory, and grab his ass. Mmm… muscular but not hard as a rock- that’s better saved for other parts of his anatomy. He growls against my nipple, but then lifts his head. My hands move up his lower back, and then around to his chest. How in the world did I control myself for this long?

With that thought in mind I decide to just let it all go. I pull his face to mine and start walking back toward his bed. His hands start working on my jeans, and by the time my knees hit the mattress he’s got them open and down over my hips. Eric picks me up and literally tosses me back onto the bed like I’m just a sack of potatoes or something.

It seems that Eric has reached the same conclusion I have because as soon as I hit the bed he’s bending to pull my jeans the rest of the way, leaving me in just my tiny little boy shorts. I get up on my knees in front of him and reach into the front of his jeans. I try not to let it show on my face but there is a whole lot of fuck-me-is-he-going-to-fit when my hand wraps around his cock. Trouser snake is not an accurate description. Longboat was better, and Lochness Monster might be even better. But when I look down as I pull his erection from his jeans my throat goes dry. Not good considering what I’m about to do. Eric shoves his jeans down and I start stroking his cock while I kiss his neck. After he kicks his jeans away his fingers slide down the back of my panties.

His arms are long enough that his fingers easily reach my pussy when I spread my legs a little for him. I kiss my way down his chest, pausing to lick and drag my teeth over his nipples, which Eric seems to enjoy. His fingers are teasing away and my kisses are getting lower and lower until I finally reach the Guardian.

I look up at Eric, and he’s looking down at me. I lick his cock from base to tip and see his stomach muscles clench in my peripheral vision. Giving head has never been my favorite thing on the menu, and with a guy Eric’s size there’s definitely the intimidation factor to take into consideration. But I tell myself I’m going to give it my best shot, and that’s exactly what I do. Lafayette has been a wonderful resource when it comes to oral sex, and I figure if there was ever a time to put all that information to use, this is it. The most important tip he gave me was to be into it.

“No guy wants a blowjob from someone who doesn’t want to give it. So don’t half ass it. Go all in, or don’t bother,” he told me.

Seems like good enough advice to me and I take it seriously. Lafayette told me not to be afraid of getting messy, and the wetter it gets the better it is. Given my own personal experience with things getting wet, I can’t find fault with that either. So I use every tip Lafayette has given me and while I know there’s no way on God’s green earth that I have the gag reflex to allow me to deep throat the Guardian, I do the best I can. I know I’m doing well when I see Eric struggling to breathe, and his hand winds its way into my hair to guide my head. His fingers are still playing in my panties, and when his finger slides into me I moan around his length.

It isn’t long after that when he says, “Sookie, I’m gonna cum.”

I appreciate the warning. There’s a part of me that’s kicking myself for doing this without having the safe sex talk. I would assume he’d disclose it if he had an illness I needed to know about, but that isn’t a guarantee. So I release him from my mouth but keep stroking him until he cums on my chest and stomach. Eric pulls me into one of those toe curling kisses that makes my entire body feel alive, and when he breaks it, it’s so he can hand me a tissue from the box beside his bed.

I wipe myself off and no sooner have I tossed the tissue aside than Eric climbs up onto his bed. He stretches out and pulls me over to straddle him. When I bend forward he takes a nipple in his mouth and pushes my panties down over my ass. His fingers are back at play, rubbing up and down my slit until I start panting a little. I want more.

I move to sit up and Eric says, “Sit here,” and points to his lips.

I smile and start to inch my way forward until I have a knee on either side of his head. At first he just moves my panties to the side, but when Eric latches onto my clit, he tears them off.

“Eric!” I gasp, more because of what he’s doing with his tongue, although I wasn’t expecting him to rip my panties off either.

After he tosses my completely ruined panties out of the way, he grabs my hips to move me where he wants me. I let my hips roll a little, and the next thing I know I’m riding his tongue. Good God in heaven, I have never felt anything like this before and I don’t want it to end.

One of his hands moves up and grabs my breast while the other splays out on my lower abdomen and his thumb rubs my clit. I throw my head back but grab the headboard to keep myself upright.

“Fuck, this feels so fucking good,” I groan.

When I look down at Eric’s face and there is nothing but intensity in his eyes. The pressure inside me keeps on building until I can’t contain it anymore, and I scream when I cum. Eric thrusts his tongue deeper inside me to lap at the juices pouring from me. My body is trembling and my heart is pounding so hard I’m sure Eric can hear it.

My hands drop to my sides and my posture goes to shit while I recover from my orgasm. Fuck me that was amazing. I don’t think I’ve ever cum that hard from oral sex before. That could be due to lack if experience on my part, or because the other guys I’ve been with just aren’t as skilled as Eric. Whatever the reason, I’m too blissed out to give it too much thought.

I adjust my position so that I’m lying on my side next to Eric and he turns his body toward me. We stare at each other for a few seconds before the urge to kiss him takes over. I give into it, and when he rolls on top of me I feel his longboat against the inside of my thigh, hard and ready to pull into port.

“Condom,” I gasp between kisses because I’m not taking chances.

Eric takes me with him when he rolls over and says, “Nightstand.”

I lean to the side and open the drawer to get one. I hand it to him and we roll over again so I’m on my back. I don’t know what he does with the condom, but I’m too busy kissing him to think much about it. His fingers find their way between my thighs again, and he pushes two if them into me.

“So fucking tight,” he says as he pumps his fingers in and out of me slowly. “And so wet for me, Sookie.”

“I want your cock in me,” I look into his eyes. “I want you deep in me and I want you to fuck me hard.”

He growls a little at my words and spreads his fingers inside me to stretch me a little. “Such a dirty little mouth you have,” he smiles at me.

“You didn’t mind when your dick was in it,” I sass back.

I feel his cock twitch against my thigh and I know I’ve hit a hot button with him. So he likes it when I talk dirty. I can do that. I’m not used to it, but with him I don’t mind. The words just seem to come naturally to me, and I let them flow until he grabs the condom off the bed and rolls it on.

Here we go.

Eric turns me over onto my stomach and I get on my hands and knees. I look back over my shoulder, making sure to flip my hair as my head turns. Eric pushes my legs apart and I see him grab his cock right before I feel it moving against my folds to collect some of my wetness. His other hand is on my hip as he starts to push into me.

I bite my lip and moan at the feeling of him stretching me. He takes it slow, giving me the chance to adjust. His hips rock a little, which helps the process along. Even better is when he says, “Rub your clit for me, Sookie.”

I keep my eyes trained on his, but move my hand to do as he says. The stimulation sucks him deeper inside me until he’s buried in me. He pulls out slowly but I keep rubbing so my pussy sucks him in easily the second time. On the third thrust I cum, and drop my head down onto the mattress. Eric let’s out a frustrated grunt, but starts to thrust a little faster than before.

“Oh God,” I moan, knowing it isn’t going to be long before I cum again.

Eric grabs my hips and starts pounding me hard and fast. I hear the sound of his hips slapping against my ass, and already the flutters are starting in my pussy again. My body seems to know who has invaded it, and is responding accordingly. I try to push myself up again, but then don’t have a choice when he grabs my hair. He turns my head and Eric is tall enough that he can kiss the daylights right out of me while he keeps pounding away.

I have to break the kiss so I can breathe and cry out. I’m so close to cumming again, and Eric pulls out to flip me on my back. My legs fall open and he let’s his cock slide up and down my folds, and the pressure on my clit has my hips rising off the bed. He enters me again and looks down to watch himself fucking me for a few seconds. But his eyes ultimately focus on my tits. My hands go to my nipples, and he pounds into me a little harder while I pinch and roll my nipples. He leans down and kisses me hard my legs wrap around his waist, and he breaks the kiss to move to my neck.

My hips rise to meet his, and when the pressure in my belly gets to be too much, I reach down to help myself along. The sound coming out of my mouth doesn’t sound like me, and Eric starts muttering in what I assume is Swedish.

So. Fucking. Sexy.

My hands grip his back hard when I cum, and Eric follows a moment later with a roar and a string of Swedish that I don’t understand. Eric doesn’t completely sink into me, but his lips land on my neck. My legs relax and we’re both sweating and breathing hard. My heart is thundering away in my chest, and I’m sucking in air as fast as I can.

Eric plants little kisses up my neck until he reaches my mouth, and he looks into my eyes as he starts to pull out of me. I don’t have any words. My brain is frozen for the time being. I whimper as he pulls out, and that’s as close as I get to talking. He gets up and throws away the condom.

This is easily the best sex I’ve ever had, but I can’t get my mouth to say the words.

Instead what I say is, “I’ve never fucked a guy on the first date before.”

Smooth, Stackhouse.

“Well it’s not like we’re strangers,” Eric says, but that isn’t entirely true.

Most of what I know about him any fan could tell you just by reading magazine articles or watching interviews on the Internet. That’s general info, and not that it doesn’t matter, but it’s celebrity!Eric, and I want to know him.

And he knows even less about me.

“When’s my birthday?” I ask him.

Eric’s smile fades and he says, “I don’t know, but I want to. I was serious about that second date.”

“I’ll have to think about it,” I say coyly, and get pounced on by a giant.

“You have to think about it?” he raises an eyebrow. “Then I obviously didn’t wow you the way you did me.”

“Oh, you did, but that could be a one time thing. Everybody has a great day now and then,” I say dismissively.

“This was no lucky break,” Eric says with confidence.

“How do I know that?” I arch an eyebrow.

“That’s what the second date is for,” he smirks.

He’s got me there.

“Okay, you get a second date, but no work functions next time,” I tell him. “And you dress yourself.”

He laughs and says, “I think I can handle it… as long as you’re the one undressing me at the end of the night.”

“If you play your cards right,” I smirk.

But then he rolls on top of me again and looks me in my eyes. There’s a serious expression there and he says, “Don’t tell Pam, but I’m glad she made us go out tonight.”

“Me too,” I agree, and then stretch forward to kiss him.



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