I was relieved to find that Pam wasn’t working the door at the bar. I was already running late. I smoothed out my skirt as I walked inside. I felt eyes on me right away and threw my shields up to keep the fangbangers out of my head. A glance toward the stage told me that it was Eric who was staring at me so intensely. I felt a shiver run through me, and desire pool between my thighs. I shook myself and forced my eyes away from Eric. I couldn’t understand his fascination with me.
The last time I saw him was the night he staked Longshadow. The look in his eyes that night had been scary, but exciting at the same time. I’d left because he looked dangerous and dark. But the hunger in his eyes had stayed with me, and I found myself fantasizing about what it would be like if he bit me. A chill ran down my spine while I searched the crowded bar for Bill.
I found him in a booth with a woman and I stopped short. They were huddled close together and she was smiling at him lovingly. She had fangs. I cringed at the prospect of meeting anyone else from Bill’s past. And then, he kissed her. My jaw dropped and my heart sank. What the hell was he doing kissing another woman? I marched over to the booth with the weight of Eric’s eyes still on me.
“Sorry I’m late.” I said pointedly, breaking up the kiss.
“Sookie, this isn’t-” Bill turned to me.
“Save it.” I stopped him. I looked to his kissing partner. “I’m Sookie Stackhouse.” I introduced myself.
“Lorena.” She continued t smile.
Either she didn’t know who I was, or she didn’t care. I was betting it was option two. Whoever she was, at least Bill had the decency to pull away from her when she tried to get grabby with him.
“Sookie, please sit so I can explain.” Bill gestured to the other side of the booth.
“No, thanks. Clearly I’ve interrupted something.” I glared at him.
We were supposed to give this dating thing a shot. My instincts had told me stay away from Bill on more than one account, but I’d batted them back down. He was a gentleman, and he was nice to me. He’d saved my life. And I liked him.
“Is there a problem here?” Eric put a cool hand on my bare shoulder. Great. Just what I need.
“It is none of your concern.” Bill said curtly.
“On the contrary, this is my bar, and my area. You will remember that when you address me.” Eric said sharply.
“This is a personal matter, Eric. It does not concern you.” Bill insisted.
“I’m going home.” I announced, in no mood for the pettiness of a vampire power struggle.
“Don’t bother. I don’t want to hear it.” I held up a hand to silence Bill.
“What’s iher/i problem?” Lorena asked.
“Sookie is mine.” Bill told the woman I didn’t want to know anything about.
“Yours? I don’t think so. I’m mine.” I corrected him, and I saw a flash of amusement in Eric’s eyes. “Thank you, Lorena, for showing me what a rat bastard he is.”
“Sookie, please…” Bill pleaded and grabbed for my hand. I pulled away from him. The last thing I wanted was for him to touch me.
I didn’t say another word as I stormed out of the bar. I decided right then and there that I would never again ignore my instincts. They had told me getting involved with Bill would be a big mistake, but I convinced myself that my reluctance was only because he was a vampire, and it wasn’t fair to judge him on that one criteria alone. Being a vampire had nothing to do with being unfaithful, though. And with another vampire, no less!
How could I compete with that woman? She was immortal, and would always be young and beautiful. I would get old and wrinkled as my body slowly fell apart. She would get stronger with age while I would weaken. But was it even fair to compare us since we weren’t even really the same species? Okay, so maybe I could overturn a car on my own, but I wouldn’t burst into flames if I stayed out in the sun for five minutes. And honestly, which of those two abilities is more useful? Take ithat/i, you boyfriend stealing hussy.
I got out to my car and dug into my purse for my keys, only to realize they were still in the ignition. I yanked at the door handle praying the door was unlocked. Of course it wasn’t.
“No!” I hit the roof of the car. “No! No! No! No!” A string of cuss words left my mouth as I kicked the dire. I was about to throw my head back and scream when I heard Eric.
“You have quite a temper, Sookie.” He observed with great amusement.
“This isn’t funny, Eric.” I could see his reflection in the window in front of the car. I wanted to turn around and slap the smirk off his face. Or maybe kiss him. Maybe both.
“Lighten up, Sookie; there are plenty of other fish in the sea. I think that is the expression.”
I whirled around and glared up at him. “Oh, like you, maybe?”
“It would be an improvement for you.” His smirk grew into a smile.
I snickered at that. The sad thing was I was sure he was right. I’d seen inside the heads of enough fangbangers to know that. But I wasn’t interested in being just another silly human he used and cast off when he got bored. Then again, how many women did he stake another vampire for?
“You sound pretty sure of that.” I sighed and then when I saw Bill coming toward us, I acted purely on impulse.
I grabbed Eric’s face and kissed him.
I heard Bill growling, but didn’t let that stop me. Good Lord was Eric a great kisser. I wasn’t sure how old he was, but he’d put his many centuries to good use. I could have stayed like that all night long, but his arousal south of his waistline reminded me to take a step back. A kiss was one thing, but sex was something different. I broke off the kiss. Eric remained bowed toward me and I wondered if maybe he was feeling as dizzy as I was. I wobbled a bit as I turned toward Bill.
“What do you want?” I stared at him.
“I wanted to make sure that you are okay. I thought we could talk about what happened inside.” His tone was clipped. He had the gall to be mad at ime/i?
“What’s there to talk about, Bill? You knew I was meeting you here tonight, and you kissed another woman!” I shouted at him.
“She’s my maker, Sookie.”
“So that makes it okay?” I turned to look at Eric.” Say Eric, how often do you and Pam make out?”
“The last time I kissed Pam was more than a decade ago.” He admitted, earning a flash of fang from Bill.
I was very aware that in just about any other situation where there were two vampires and a human, the human was sure to come out on the losing side of the confrontation. I was hell-bent on making sure that didn’t happen.
“Pam is interested in women, Sookie. It’s not the same thing.” As if that changed anything.
“He’s her maker, isn’t he? He can order her to do anything. Is that was Lorena did, Bill? Did she force you to kiss her?” I asked him. He looked away with guilt in his eyes. “I didn’t think so. Look, Bill, I think it would be better if you just leave me be, okay? Go back inside and deal with your maker. I’ll be fine.”
“You kissed Eric.”
I rolled my eyes. “And you kissed Lorena!” I shouted, my temper getting the better of me. We were arguing in circles. “I don’t want to fight anymore, okay? Just leave me.”
He stepped toward me and Eric got between us. He barked at Bill in another language so I had no idea what he was saying. Whatever it was couldn’t have been good, since it had Bill hissing. The next thing I knew, Bill was shouting back. Eric’s fangs extended and that was when I got scared. I wanted to get in my car and go home, but that wasn’t going to happen. Then a punch got thrown. I heard the distinct sound of knuckles meeting a jaw, but Eric’s head barely turned with the blow. I gasped; shocked that Bill would hit Eric like that.
“Bill!” I glared at him but he paid me no mind.
The way Eric and Bill were staring one another down, I knew nothing good was going to happen. There was a blur of movement and then they were fighting. I’d never seen anything like it, and I was pretty sure almost immediately I never wanted to again. They slammed into the brick wall and I heard a cracking sound. I couldn’t tell if it was the building or their bones. There was hissing and growling. It was very animalistic, and nothing like the bar fights I’d witnessed at Merlotte’s on more than one occasion.
I followed them at a distance, watching them exchange brutal punches and bites.
“Stop it! Bill! Eric! Stop figh-” My plea was cut off by a hand around my throat. My head was forced to the side and I felt fangs on my neck.
“Unhand my child, Northman.” Lorena ordered.
“Eric…” I whimpered and he let go of Bill.
“Lorena, stop this.” Bill hissed; terror in his eyes at the sight of Lorena poised to bite me. He was bleeding from his head and other parts I couldn’t see. Eric didn’t seem to be hurt at all.
“I want you both out of my area. Now.” Eric barked.
Lorena shoved me away and I would have hit the pavement if it wasn’t for Eric’s lightning fast reflexes. He caught me easily. Bill tried to come closer to me, but Eric growled. He meant business.
“Come along, Bill.” Lorena said firmly.
“Sookie, I am sorry.” Bill apologized, but I didn’t acknowledge him. Was he sorry he got caught? Was he sorry I didn’t just turn a blind eye? Was he sorry that Eric defended me? His apology was a little too vague for me.
Eric got me back on my feet but held onto my shoulders. “Are you alright?” He looked me over closely as if I was the one who had just been slammed against a wall and knocked around like a ragdoll.
I rubbed my neck. Lorena’s grip was strong, and she’d used more force than necessary Eric let go of my shoulders and moved my hair to take a closer look at my neck. The look on his face told me I was bruised.
“She has marked you.” He sneered.
“I’ll live.” I moved my head slowly, checking to make sure I still had full range of motion.
“Let me take you home.” Eric offered.
“I need my car, Eric. I have to go to work in the morning.”
“I can call a locksmith.” He offered an alternative.
“I would appreciate that.” I nodded carefully.
I walked to my car and sat on the hood while Eric made his call. My head was pounding. Whether it was because of my cheating boyfriend, Eric’s kiss or the vampire death grip I’d survived, I didn’t know. This was not how the night was supposed to go. Bill had said he had some business here, but I didn’t think that mean Lorena. I took a few deep breaths in attempts to collect myself.
“You have blood on your neck.” Eric pointed to where Lorena’s fangs had been. Great. I reached up to wipe it away, but Eric stopped me. “I can seal it for you. There will be no scar.”
My vanity got the better of me, or maybe I was too tired to think about it. “Okay.” I agreed quietly.
Eric stepped closer to me and gently turned my head to the side. Our eyes met briefly and I wasn’t quite sure of what to make of it. I would have to be deaf and blind not to know Eric was attractive, but he was so much more than that. He was, hands down, the hottest man I’d ever seen. His fingers were cool against my head. It felt good on the hot summer night. I was just barely sweating, but I could feel it when the breeze picked up. He moved slowly, trailing his fingers down my neck to my collarbone. Goose bumps broke out on my arms, which didn’t go unnoticed by Eric.
“Are you cold?” He asked without a trace of smugness.
“No,” My voice shook, betraying me completely.
“Why are you shaking?”
I hadn’t realized I was. I did, however, realize what a vulnerable position I was in. I was somewhat stranded many miles from home with an extremely sexy vampire poised to lick my neck. And my boyfriend- scratch that, EX-boyfriend- was nowhere to be seen. My body wanted Eric to lick my neck and maybe a few other parts of me. My head was telling me to run. If Bill was trouble, then Eric was downright dangerous. Yet, I felt safe with him. I couldn’t quite put my finger on why that was.
The cynic in me said this was the moment he’d been hoping for. I was vulnerable and alone. Centuries of preying on humans told him I would be an easy mark. And if he could glamour me, I was sure we would already be secluded somewhere having sex.
“Do I scare you, Sookie?” He asked me as if he already knew the answer to that question.
“Should I be scared of you?”
Eric smiled. It was disarming. I wondered how many humans had seen that very smile before he killed them.
If I wanted you dead, you would be dead, dear one.” I would have rolled my eyes at his disregard for humanity, but he was just being honest.
“Why did you stake Longshadow?” I asked suddenly.
“Two reasons. First, he stole from me. Had he not made a move against you, his death would have been much slower and far more painful. But secondly, and I think much more important, I haven’t fucked you yet.” His voice dripped with sexuality. His fingers stroked my collarbone. Oh Lord.
“Is that why you’re out here? You want to fuck me.” I looked him in his eyes. Stupid question, Stackhouse.
“Very much.” Eric was blunt and to the point.
We stayed locked in a stare, trying to figure out our next moves. I felt beads of sweat roll down my chest and past the neckline of my tiny summer dress. The moisture pooled between my breasts as heat collected between my thighs. If I didn’t look away from Eric soon, I was sure I’d be in real trouble. So, I turned my head again. Yes, I know, offering your throat to a horny vampire isn’t the smartest way to diffuse a situation like the one I was in. I guess I saw it somewhat of a test. Not even so much for him as for myself.
He had been quite clear with me. What Eric wanted wasn’t in question. What I wanted, however, was unclear to me. The next thing I knew Eric’s lips were grazing my neck. I restrained myself from making any noise, though I wanted to desperately. I couldn’t, however, stop my heart from pounding, and I knew he could feel it. His fangs grazed me. Then his cool tongue darted out and began to lick the blood from my neck. He groaned against my skin. His hand snaked up to the back of my head and cradled it for me. His hand felt good against my scalp. I probably should have put a stop to it when I felt him trailing open mouth kisses on my neck, but I couldn’t. I was too relaxed
Not to mention, it felt damn good. It didn’t feel weird or forced like I’d thought it would. But then, I don’t think any woman in her right mind would pull away from kissing Eric if she knew what it felt like. I smelled rain all of a sudden and there was distant rumbling of thunder. I didn’t know how much blood had dripped from my throat, but I was sure Eric had gotten it all. Now he was lingering in hopes of seducing me.
I was looking up at the sky and reminding myself to breathe when his mouth moved up closer to my jaw, then past it to my lips. The goose bumps were back with incredible force. His tongue licked my lips, wanting an invitation into my mouth. I hesitated only briefly before letting him have his way. It seemed like whatever muscles controlled the parting of my lips also controlled my knees because they opened as well so Eric could stand between them. I caught the scent of his cologne and it woke something inside of me.
My tongue skimmed his fangs and the kiss deepened. No one had ever kissed me like that. Granted, my experience was limited, but I doubted I would ever feel something like that with anyone else. And as inappropriate as it might be to think such a thing, I couldn’t help but think Bill had never kissed me like that. Eric kissed me until I was breathless and then his mouth moved to the other side of my neck to give it the same attention.
My head got soupy and my brain felt like a marshmallow. I didn’t notice the drizzle that had started to fall. I was too absorbed in Eric and the incredible talent of his lips and mouth. His tongue trailed on my neck, licking up the sweat. God, I was so close to losing all control over my ability to make decisions. I felt water dropping onto my face, dampening my hair. When I caught my breath Eric’s mouth returned to mine. I tasted something salty, but sweet, and I assumed it was just the sweat he had licked off my neck and collarbone. It was strange, but nothing about my night was ordinary so far.
Thunder rumbled. It was a little closer over our heads. Lightning crackled and flashed in the sky, giving us both a pale glow. The sapphire-like quality to Eric’s eyes only seemed to intensify. He feathered kisses on my face and pulled me closer to the edge of the hood. I felt his hands on my legs, slowly moving under my skirt to test how far he could go until I pulled away.
I wasn’t going anywhere.
I jerked a bit when his fingers grazed the insides of my thighs, pushing them farther apart. The coolness is what got me, more than the sensation, although that was nice, too. He nipped at my bottom lip and I responded in kind by tugging on his with my teeth. But then his fingers were probing against the moist center of my panties. I couldn’t stop myself from moaning then, and it just so happened that moan landed in his mouth.
It turned out his fingers were as talented as his mouth. His touch was expert, and very quickly he had me moving against his hand, silently begging for more. The bulge in his pants pressed against my thigh. I gulped for air as his fingers worked my center in tandem with his lips at my throat. My body felt like it was on fire. I had never wanted anyone so much in my life. His fingers found their way past the very wet material they had been working on top of.
“You’re quite excited, Sookie.” Eric’s voice brought me back to reality. “Do you iwant/i me to fuck you?”
There it was, the moment of truth. He was giving me an out. His fingers never stopped moving. I was so close to my orgasm, the wait was almost painful. He had me right where he wanted me. Then a finger went inside me, and I thought I would lose my mind. He stroked me, waiting patiently for my answer. When it didn’t come, he added a second finger. I was so close. My body quivered and told me to give in to him.
“Yield to me, Sookie.” He purred in my ear and nipped at the lobe.
And then three words left my mouth that I had never thought I would say to Eric Northman. “Fuck me, Eric.”
His fingers moved faster and curled just a bit in search of that magic spot inside of me. He found it quickly and I was panting and moaning, trying hard to keep from screaming. My heart thumped wildly in my chest. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. And then the most powerful wave of pleasure I’d ever felt crashed down on me. Eric kissed me to swallow the scream that accompanied my orgasm. I was still panting through the aftershocks of my orgasm when Eric withdrew his fingers from me. I opened my eyes to find him licking them and watching me closely.
“You taste divine, Sookie.” He kissed me hard, adding another experience to my list of firsts with him. I could taste myself on his tongue. “And you are extraordinarily tight.”
My insides squeezed. Bill didn’t talk to me like this. In fact, ino one/i talked to me like this. Coming from anyone else, it might have been a turn-off. Coming from Eric, it made me want to rip off my dress and screws his brains out right there on the ground. But it was full on raining and we were both soaking wet. To show him I meant what I said, I ran my hand over the bulge in his pants. I felt him twitch under my palm.
“Not outside.” Were the only words I could get out.
In no time flat I was hoisted off the hood of my car and carried into the bar through the employee entrance. I expected Eric to take me to his office, but instead he took me down a flight of stairs and into a locked room. I knew better than to ask if it was where he rested, though I was sure that room was for emergencies (or fucking) only. He kicked the door closed and set me down on the bed. We quickly divested each other of clothing. When I caught sight of his erection, I panicked some.
Being that I was a small woman, comparatively speaking, and new to text, I had my reservations as to how this was going to work. Eric seemed to catch on to my concern.
“Relax, Sookie.” He moved me back on the bed, positioning me the way he wanted me.
I wanted him. Boy, did I want him. But I wanted to be able to walk the next day. He went slowly, though, as if he hadn’t already given me one great release outside. His mouth moved slowly from mine to my breasts, sucking and licking at my nipples before using his teeth a little. My pelvis lifted, but he pushed it back to the bed. I felt his very hard length on the inside of my thigh, and I reached down to touch him. He stopped moving when my hand began to stroke him.
I had only done that once before. I hoped it didn’t show.
He reciprocated my gesture by stroking my core until I couldn’t take it anymore. “Now, Eric.” I raised my hips, but again, he pushed them down.
He kept stroking me, but I couldn’t do the same for him. Instead, I was grabbing at the blanket underneath me. I cried out and moved my body in time with his hand. God, it felt good.
“Eric, please, I’m so close.” I begged.
“Open your eyes, Sookie.” When my eyes opened I realized his mouth was poised at my center.
He kissed the inside of my thigh and then his tongue flicked against my nub, sending sparks through my veins. Colors danced behind my eyes. I was gasping for air and begging (rather loudly) for him to fuck me. I felt his smile.
“I am dear one.” Was his answer. His fingers curled again while his tongue swirled around my nub.
“Oh, God, Eric! Oh, fuck me!” I begged.
His mouth moved from my center to my thigh and just as I was starting to squeeze his fingers form the inside, his fangs sank deep into me. I cried out loudly, and thought I might pass out I felt so good. There was no pain in Eric’s bite. It only intensified what I was feeling. My body trembled and shook with delight. And then he was hovering over me. He rubbed the tip of himself against my center.
Our eyes met and I knew there was no going back. I didn’t care. I wanted him. I pulled his face to mine to kiss him. I swirled my tongue over his fangs. And then, very slowly, he pushed inside of me. My eyes widened at the feeling of it. I could feel myself stretching to take him. A little bit of pain came with that, but I knew it would fade. He was far more gentle with me than I would have thought possible. Maybe he didn’t want to just fuck me after all.
When he was as deep inside of me as my body would allow, he began to pull back. I looked down the length of my body to watch his thrusts, and for a moment, it felt like I was watching from outside my own body. But then he would fill me again, and I would come back into myself. It was as if he planned on taking a piece of me with him when he left. Or maybe I was giving it to him.
And then my hips began to rise to meet him. The pace picked up and my pain floated away. Hands that were anxious for something to hold onto curled around his powerful arms. My nails dug into his skin, but he didn’t seem to care about that. His thrusts became harder and more intense. I could feel myself coming undone and crying out for more.
Just when I would be on the edge, ready to plunge headlong into ecstasy and release, he would stop. He silenced my protests with kisses that left me breathless and too weak to argue. He did this over and over until I was sure I was going to lose my mind. Never in my life could I have imagined being so desperate with need and lust. How was it that this man knew how to make me crazy in every sense of the word? And with so little effort, no less.
Once again, I found myself so close. “Eric, don’t stop. I’m so close.” My voice was high and my hands were clamped on him.
His eyes met mine, and we stared at one another. He slowed his hips and put more power in them. His thrusts became possessive. I realized then that we had gone from making love to fucking and then on to claiming. I wanted to look away, but couldn’t do it. He watched my face as my orgasm ravaged m body. I felt like I was exploding. One part of my body didn’t feel connected to the next. Eric had every right to gloat, in that moment, and I wouldn’t have the strength to chastise him for it.
It took a few minutes for me to regain my composure, only to realize that Eric was not only still inside me, but that he hadn’t finished yet. He kissed me hard and then whispered in my ear.
“What are you doing to me?” It was so soft I barely heard it.
“I don’t know.” I really didn’t. I was off in my own world, still trying to get my mind to process thought.
But then he pulled out of me and flipped me over. It happened so fast I didn’t have time to think. He pulled me up by my hips and entered me hard from behind. I grunted at the force of his stroke. I figured out quickly that we were back to fucking. The trusts were fast and hard. I found release quickly and he didn’t stop me. My walls were still clamping down on him when Eric finally found his own release. He bit my shoulder when he did, and I thought I might collapse.
Collapsing was exactly what I did when he pulled out of me and licked my wounds closed. He traced shapes on my back, and I could feel him staring at me. After a few minutes he stretched out on his back next to me. The reality of what had just happened began to sink in. I stayed on my stomach and looked straight ahead at the padded headboard.
“Well, you’ve fucked me. Now what?” I was a little afraid of the answer, but only because I realized I wanted more.
“Now you are mine.” His voice was emotionless.
“That’s it? We have sex and you own me?” I turned to look at him.
“You misunderstand, Sookie.” He faced me as well. He picked up my hand and kissed it before putting it on his length, which was already hard again.
I gasped (though I shouldn’t have been surprised) and felt my body tingle at the prospect of joining with him again. It wasn’t possible, of course, but it felt like I had been glamoured. My memory was fuzzy and my ability to comprehend why I was suddenly so drawn to Eric was a mystery. But now that he got what he wanted, was this it?
After a few minutes of silence I said, “I think I should go. I’m sure you have other things to do.” I started to get up, but he just pulled me down on top of him.
“If I wanted you gone, you would be gone.” He looked deep into my eyes.
“Why me?” I wanted to know what he saw in me.
“You intrigue me, Sookie. Not many humans can do that iand/i capture my attentions like you do. Not to mention, I very much want to fuck you again.” He smiled at his bluntness.
“That’s it? I’m interesting and good in bed?” I asked skeptically.
“Is that not enough? I look forward to collecting more reasons.” He offered and his arm closed around the small of my back. “What changed your mind about me, Sookie?”
I gave a coy smile and said, “I figured if you were that good of a kisser, you had to be good at the other stuff too.”
Eric cleared his throat and rolled us over so I was on my back again. His eyes searched mine and he smiled at me a little brighter. He grazed his lips against mine and I felt his length nudging my center. God, I wanted him again.
“You haven’t even seen my best work yet, dear one.” Eric licked my neck as my hips raised.
“Bring it on.” I challenged.