Not much to say today. Other than thanks to all those who have read, reviewed, favorited or alerted this little guy! You guys make my day!
Thanks to my beta, Balti K, for making sure this doesn’t suck a bunch!
Disclaimer – I don’t own any of these characters, Charlaine Harris and Alan Ball do (even if we wish he didn’t sometimes).
“Tell the King I will be there shortly,” I sneered. Sometimes I fucking hated my propensity for being right!
“Is this sniveling little twat really king now?” I couldn’t help but chuckle at her tone and fairly accurate description.
“Unfortunately, I believe so,” Gods, how I hated that infantile fuck!
“What the fuck did I miss while I was picking the cement from my hair?” Pam asked, her voice missing none of her usual bitchiness. “For which, by the way, I still owe that twatwaffle a special thank you.”
“Hmmm,” I hummed, “that you do. Anyway, you missed a fair amount. I’ll get you up to speed later.”
“Fine,” she huffed. “He wanted to make sure I told you ‘not to dawdle,’ if you can believe that shit?!” my progeny snarked.
“Perhaps I shouldn’t dawdle in kicking his fucking ass either,” I mused, earning a snicker from Sookie. I remembered the disrepair of Sookie’s beloved home and added in Old Norse, “Make sure Herveaux and his crew get over to my bonded’s property today. Tell him to make any and all repairs necessary, but to ensure they are completed within the next forty-eight hours, even if he has to subcontract out some of the work. Make certain he understands that money is no object, but the work must be up to my standards.” I could see Sookie watching me as I paced. The scowl she was sporting told me she did not see the humor in me speaking a language she didn’t understand whilst in her presence.
“Your bonded?!” Pam exclaimed at an annoyingly high pitch, though thankfully she continued to speak in the dead language, so I knew if Billy-Boy was around he wouldn’t understand anything other than I had surprised her.
“Yes, Pamela. My bonded.” I returned to English as to not incur Sookie’s wrath. “And be sure you do not mention this aloud again. I don’t want our new leader to learn of this until I’m ready. No sense in giving the enemy any intel he could use against us.” My tone was just humorous enough that hopefully Sookie wouldn’t pick up on my implied threat to Pam. I knew Pam would have no problems garnering my intent though.
“Understood, Master,” she said quietly before disconnecting the call. I knew the matter of bonding Sookie to myself was by no means a closed subject for Pamela, but she understood at least that now was not the time to broach it.
I was beyond pissed I had to leave my willing mate to go deal with the sniveling weasel who was apparently now Louisiana’s king! I turned to Sookie, ready to face her ire over the speaking in another language issue, only to find her staring at me with what I could only describe as a puffy lip. It was by far the most adorable thing I’d ever witnessed.
“My love, why are you making puffy-lipped faces at me?” I inquired while chuckling.
“This is not a puffy-lipped face, Eric,” she began explaining slowly and with great enunciation, as if I were mentally deficient somehow. My normal modus operandi would be to eviscerate anyone that dared degrade me in such a fashion, feasting on their entrails before ripping out their heart and using it as a juice-box. However when Sookie scolded me like a special-needs infant, I was forced to laugh aloud; the look on her face along with the tone in her voice was just… cute.
I might as well have turned in my fucking fangs before heading to the nearest doctor to be castrated. I really had turned into a giant man-baby who was wholly unworthy of being called Vampire every time I was around this woman. Maybe Godric encouraged me to avoid love because it turned you into such a pussy…
Shaking myself from my internal debate, I inquired, “Then what would it be called, oh, wise and gracious one?” I practically invented sarcasm; she could not compete with me. Though watching her try was rapidly becoming one of my favorite pastimes.
“It is called a ‘boo-boo pouty lip,’ silly!” For added effect she hyper extended her bottom lip. All I knew was I needed to leave now or I’d be feasting on those lips and so much more, King be damned!
“Well then, dear one, tell me. Why are you making this ‘boo-boo lip’?” I asked as I pulled her up from the sofa and into my arms.
Her resulting giggle at being whisked up unexpectedly was glorious. How I longed to hear that sound for the next thousand years! “Because you’re leaving me now, silly! Aren’t you?” Her tone was somehow both amused and accusatory simultaneously.
“Sadly, I must,” I almost sounded like I was whining. Almost.
The boo-boo lip appeared again. “I don’t want to stay here alone, Eric.” I found myself wondering if I would need a neck brace in the near future; her mood swings were bound to give me whiplash at some point. Not for the first time tonight, I pondered whether such behavior was Sookie’s alone or if all women were such unpredictable creatures.
“Sookie, you will be perfectly safe here.” When she began to protest, I raised my hand in a halt gesture to silence her. “It is not safe for you to accompany me to Fangtasia tonight. Bill is waiting there for me and I don’t wish to alert him to the fact that we are together, let alone bonded, until absolutely necessary. I would prefer he reveal his intentions regarding you before we announce our bonding,” I explained patiently.
“I guess I can see why you’d want to keep an ace up your sleeve, but I’m really not sure I can stay here alone,” she all but wailed with tears forming rapidly.
Yes, I was certainly going to need a neck brace in the very near future.
“I will be back before you know it, my love. Please, do not get yourself all worked up over me leaving.” I gave her a lascivious grin, “Save yourself for me to work up properly when I return.”
“Hmm… do you promise to come home and work me up soon?” she purred as she began raining kisses down my jaw line.
“Scout’s honor,” I vowed.
“Eric,” she giggled, “you’ve never been a boy scout. Have you?” she asked with wide eyes.
As if I would wear those ridiculous outfits and camp with children! “No… but I’ve certainly eaten a few Eagle Scouts and Girl Scouts Seniors over the years. Surely the pledge counts through osmosis, no?” I said with a serious face.
Sookie burst out laughing to the point where I worried she’d pass out from lack of oxygen. When she finally recovered she kissed me passionately before acknowledging, “That was pretty stupid of me wasn’t it? I mean, you were turned in the dark ages as a man, not a boy. Of course you weren’t a boy scout.”
“Not stupid, just exhausted. I would never be in love with someone stupid. Therefore, you aren’t.” In my head it was as simple as that. She must have had other thoughts on my comment however, since she attacked me with a passion that shocked me. No easy feat, mind you.
When our lips finally parted, I squeezed her tightly to me one last time and set her back on the couch. “I truly must go, dear one. The new King, no matter how much of a ‘tool,’ will not find amusement in waiting.”
“Hurry back to me, baby,” she said with a sad smile.
Baby?! Baby… I was certain that had that nickname been uttered towards me by anyone else, I would have instantly torn them to pieces before using them for kibble at the local pound! I nearly tore the head off that blood-whore in Dallas when she dared use that term with me!
Instead, yet again, I found myself feeling all squishy inside. That woman really would end up finally killing me.
Unable to find my voice, I nodded at her with a small smile and headed out the door. Part of my brain was of course focused on what to do regarding our joke of a monarch, the other part was relishing in the changes that petite woman was responsible for in me. As much as I felt like a pussy at some moments, I found I wouldn’t trade these feelings for the anything in the world – even vengeance for my slain family.
I realized that I was going to have to tell Sookie about what I had really done to Russell tonight, as I would also need to bring about his final death. He was a risk to my mate. No matter how much I longed for him to suffer for what he took from me, retribution was not worth risking her life. Mine maybe, but not hers. Besides, as much as I hated to admit it, had Russell not killed my family eons ago I might never have met Sookie. The old saying tells us, “Everything happens for a reason.” I was beginning to agree with that adage.
So much had changed so quickly with Sookie, but I found that I was relishing in the feeling. It was truly bizarre being excited about anything other than the brief reprieves of feeding and fucking, especially something as intangible as love. What an odd, yet welcome swirl of emotions.
I had been monitoring Sookie’s emotions as I flew; they were a mix of longing, fear and something very close to love. Her fear was steadily rising, so I sent her calming feelings along with a fraction of the love I held for her, hoping it would reassure her. Unfortunately it had very little effect. The more time passed, the more upset my future lover grew.
I was maybe ten minutes from my bar when I heard her in my mind. Eric, please. Please don’t leave me here!
Testing this newfound connection, I wanted to reassure her as best I could. My love, I will not be long. Please, Sookie, help me keep you safe.
Her reply was immediate and panicked, Eric! I cannot stay here alone!
I was sorely tempted to send her a healthy dose of lethargy to keep her sedated until my return, but I knew it would only cause a plethora of new problems for me when she awoke. With a heavy heart, I sent her a huge wave of irritation before answering. I am coming Sookie, calm down please.
There was no mental reply, but I felt her nerves subside immediately. I flew at breakneck speed as to not delay meeting with fucking Compton longer than necessary. I made it back to the safe house quickly, only to find Sookie on the porch yet again. For someone that was worried about her safety, she certainly took an abundance of liberties with it!
Opting not to delve into how frustrated with her I was, as I knew she could feel it, I simply scooped her up into a warm embrace after landing. No matter how much that woman irritated me, I was now certain I would never be able to stay angry with her for long.
“Come, let’s get to Fangtasia before your ex has a meltdown, shall we?” I murmured against her skin. “Wrap your legs around my waist, dear one; it will be the easiest way to carry you.”
I felt her nod against my chest, her delectable scent surrounding me, when something dawned on me. I pulled out my phone and texted Pam.
Get your witchy fuck-buddy to meet me at the safe house near my bar in ten minutes. I need her to perform a masking spell immediately.
Her reply was almost instantaneous; Done.
Taking to the air the moment I slid the phone into my pocket, I began to explain my plan to Sookie, “We are making the briefest of pit stops at another of my homes to meet with a witch, Sookie.” I was unable to see her face as it was currently buried in my chest, but the stiffening of her body told me she knew nothing of the existence of witches.
“Witches are real, my love. A whole host of beings exist that humans are oblivious to outside of fairy tales and bad TV shows. When we have five drama free moments, I will educate you about the supernatural world you are now a centerpiece in,” I vowed. “But for tonight, let us just meet with Pam’s girl-toy and get her to mask our scents.”
I had expected many questions as to why it was necessary and if it was safe, by my mate shocked me, yet again. “Whatever you think is best, Eric. I trust you.”
Without my enhanced senses I wouldn’t have been able to hear her over the wind whipping past us, but those words warmed something in me I was utterly unprepared for. I had never regretted being made Vampire. Never. Sure, I missed the sun on occasion, and there were times my enhanced senses could be a burden, but the benefits of this existence far outweighed any drawbacks. Hearing her declaration of absolute trust in me made every heartbreak, every moment I’d ever suffered anything over the last thousand years worthwhile. She trusted me. I was elated!
We arrived at my property to find Amelia, the witch, waiting as instructed. I placed us down gently and beckoned the petite brunette to follow us to the back yard; no sense in any prying eyes witnessing what we were about to do.
The high privet hedges provided perfect cover for my extensive back yard. Amelia immediately began unpacking the small sac she brought, presumably full of whateverthefuck witches used to work their charms. Probably snail parts or elf toenails, or something as equally fucked up. My soon-to-be lover was busying herself with introductions; the witch and I didn’t bother with greetings. Neither one of us particularly cared for the other, but she served her purpose when necessary so I didn’t go out of my way to offend her.
“Pam tells me you need a masking spell, Sheriff,” she began without looking up from her wares.
“Indeed. I do not wish for anyone to know of our bonding until we choose,” I explained. “Is that something you can accomplish?”
With a scoff, the witch replied, “Of course. Otherwise Pam wouldn’t have called me, now would she?” Not for the first time did I wish to teach that uppity bitch some manners but realizing time was of the essence, I let her snarky attitude go.
“Just get on with it, witch,” I commanded in my most stern tone.
“Eric,” Sookie hissed quietly, “hush now! She’s here to help us, you shouldn’t be so rude!” She scolded me as if I were a child.
What kind of fool had I become that being reprimanded by a tiny Southern woman would make my dick swell?! Yet, there I was with an instant, throbbing hard on yet again. One look at the smug smirk on the witch’s face, however, helped deflate my cock at an alarming rate.
As she poured the last of a substance that looked like salt on the ground, she asked us to step into the circle. Doing as she requested, we waited for her to do her thing. A few Latin words and quick moments later, a haze rose around the outskirts the circle, completely surrounding us. Seconds later the haze vanished and the ring of salt was gone.
“Okey-dokey. You guys are all set,” Amelia chirped. “That should work not only to mask the bonding in both your scents until you are ready to reveal it, but it should also camouflage her heartbeat, so those of the super-sense persuasion won’t hear her in another room,” she said as she began gathering up her stuff. She handed me a small, blue crystal before adding, “Keep this safe, Viking, until you are ready to reveal your bond with Sookie. Once you are, simply smash it and your connection will be instantly apparent.”
Taking the crystal from her, I was about to speak when the witch exclaimed, “Oh!” Turning to face us again she added, “I almost forgot! I was all set to mask any other vampire’s blood tracking mojo on Sookie, but there was no need. It would seem that since you two are bonded mates, your blood has completely overridden any others.”
This was very good news indeed! I had worried what would happen if Compton could track her, but I didn’t want to alarm Sookie unnecessarily. I was euphoric it was no longer a concern.
“Amelia,” I began, the look of shock at me using her first name was almost comical. “Thank you, for ensuring Compton wouldn’t be able to sense Sookie in the club tonight. I owe you for ensuring her safety.” I might not generally like Pam’s little friend, but she went above and beyond what I requested of her tonight to ensure my mate’s protection. It was an act I would not soon forget.
“She seems lovely, Sheriff. Her aura is pure and Pam spoke highly of her,” I was taken aback by that admission. “Pam never speaks highly of anyone, short of you, so I figured she must be something special,” she giggled.
She turned to Sookie with a very genuine smile, “And you are, Sookie. Very special. I hope we can become friends down the road,” she paused with a melancholy smile. “I don’t have too many friends.”
Sookie, being the woman she was, stepped forward and engulfed her new friend in a tight embrace. No matter what I personally thought of the witch, their friendship would only serve to better protect the life of my mate. After a few quiet words between them, I reminded Sookie we had to leave. Keeping the toddler king waiting any longer was not in our best interest.
Something dawned on me. Sookie, I reached out with my mind. Can you still hear me after the spell?
I can, Eric, came her immediate reply. Excellent! Our silent communication could only benefit us, especially tonight at Fangtasia.
Bidding goodnight to the witch, I gathered Sookie in my arms bridal style and flew us to my bar. I touched us down outside my private door and led us into my office.
“Stay here, my love. I will call to you with our new skill when and if you need to make an appearance.”
“I’ll be waiting,” she said as she made herself comfortable on my sofa with one of Pam’s many fashion magazines.
I walked over, placing a gentle kiss to the top of her head and headed out face Compton. As I reached the door, Sookie called to me, “Be careful, Eric. And come back to me quickly please.”
Turning my head slightly towards her I nodded, acknowledging her request before exiting my office, shutting her in behind me.
Boy, our girl is sure insistent sometimes, isn’t she?! Well, next chapter we see what Billy-boy wants…
Love and hugs to all – thanks for taking this journey with me!