I’m so sorry I missed yesterday’s update! I slept… all day. No kidding! I woke up to eat, once, and that was all she wrote folks. Thanks to everyone who’s alerted or favorited this story or me – you are fabulous and I love you oodles!
There may not be a Wednesday update (please don’t throw anything at me yet); with the storm that’s hitting this area & my beta’s area, we may not be able to get the next chapter finished by my normal deadline. BUT, I promise an update on Sunday, regardless. I will do my best to update midweek, however.
Balti K is my beta for this and she rocks!
Disclaimer – Still don’t own them, but I still wish I did!
The moment my body was reanimated with the approaching sunset, I was keenly aware of the tiny goddess next to me. It didn’t appear she had moved from my side at all while I slumbered; although I understood she had needed her rest desperately, and that it probably wasn’t a conscious decision on her part to not leave me, I still found it oddly comforting and arousing that she had remained at my side throughout the day. Her scent enveloped me, penetrated every ounce of my being and intoxicated me in a way I couldn’t describe. She smelled of sunshine, fresh baked bread, vanilla, honey and strawberries all at once. It was a curious and yet distinctly unique scent that somehow drove me wild and provided me with the comfort of being home simultaneously. What an amazing creature my mate was!
I found it amazing that after all the heinous acts I’d committed over the centuries I was now blessed with something so precious, so… wonderful and pure. Granted, it wasn’t as if I had gone on killing benders just for shits and giggles, as the saying goes. I had always tried to be a fair vampire, just as I had been a fair Viking. Being both a Viking and a vampire had defined me, until recently, but not for the reasons typically attributed to both. I was not vicious for the sake of being vicious; my worst attributes came out only when necessary. I did not rape or pillage and I almost never ended a life without reason. I killed when necessary, protected what I held dear and lived within the expected “laws” governing our species. Okay, so maybe I enjoyed torturing someone a little more than was necessary on occasion… alright, multiple occasions. But no one was perfect, right?
Sookie began to stir, pulling me from my musings. I stroked her cheek as I watched her eyes flutter under her lids while she dreamed. I hoped it was me keeping her company in her slumber and that we were happy in her subconscious world. I still found it strange to have such squishy thoughts towards anything, but I was also beginning to gain some peace within the squishiness. Surely if there was peace in being pussy-whipped, especially by a pussy I hadn’t had yet, then being squishy inside wasn’t as evil as I’d originally thought… no?
Pussy-whipped or not, when she moaned my name in her sleep while rubbing her legs together, my head almost exploded. Which head was unclear, though irrelevant, as both were blown away by the scent of her fresh arousal flooding my chambers. When my little vixen whispered, “Yes, Eric! Fuck me, right there,” I nearly embarrassed myself again. The way that woman affected me, having me ready to cum in my pants with no touching required, as often as she did, was inconceivable.
If I didn’t rouse her from her slumber now, I’d be powerless against her womanly charms and we would end up foregoing our meeting with the fucktard King so I could spend the night in bed, plundering my mate. Again, and again, and again…
Definitely needed to get her awake and out of bed, post haste!
After waking her and chuckling over her unnecessary embarrassment of her “none of my damn business” dream, we agreed that she would grab something to eat while I showered and readied myself. I was correct; she had not risen and left the chamber at all today, too exhausted from the action packed night before. We would make a quick stop at Sookie’s, prior to going to the King’s residence, so that she could freshen up and change before the meeting as well. I longed to have her in the shower with me, worshiping her body as she busied herself with mine… but that wasn’t in itinerary for the next few hours. I made a mental note to shower with her daily, after today, if she’d allow it.
Once Sookie had a full belly and I was dressed and ready for the evening, we set off towards her property. The flight was quiet and peaceful, contentment and love flowing through the bond. I hadn’t brought up her dawn-time confession of love; truth be told, I wasn’t sure I’d heard her correctly and had no interest in embarrassing myself again through another unreturned profession of love if I was mistaken. The emotions I sensed from her told me that I had most likely heard her properly, but until she was ready to confess again, I had no interest in starting that conversation.
I had called Pamela while I was away from Sookie getting ready to see if Herveaux and his team had finished their work. I was uninterested in bringing her to her beloved home if it was only half finished. She might have ordered the work to stop, and I couldn’t let her stay in such ruin left by the Maenad. Even if our monarch felt squalor was appropriate for one’s home, my bonded deserved better. I was fucking amazed the dog had been able to pull it off, when Pam announced the project complete.
“You were out of your fucking mind to tell him ‘money was no object,’ you know! I could’ve bought the spring, summer and fall collections from several designers with what you spent to fix up that backwater farmhouse, Eric. Let alone that you spent more than three times the actual value of the house prior to the infestation!” Lovely. Why did I let her handle invoices again? Now I’d have to listen to her whine about me spending more on Sookie than my own child for the next hundred or so years. Fanfuckingtastic!
“The mutt had to hire every construction crew within two hundred miles in order to get all the work done. We’re talking well into the six figure range here, Eric. Is her precious fairy vagina really that fucking good?” she snarked.
I certainly wasn’t going to admit that I had no fucking clue what her vagina was like as of yet, so I simply informed her that speaking of my mate in such a fashion was not a way to protect her already vast collection of designer labels, nor was it the way to ever gain new items for said collection using my Amex. Needless to say, I quickly got a deferential apology and a promise to be more respectful in the future.
I couldn’t help but smile as I thought of my child’s reactions as of late. While she might still bitch and whine about Sookie on occasion, Pam really did appreciate my mate for more than feeding and fucking – which was all bloodbags had been worth in Pam’s book before a little blonde telepath marched into our lives with such sass and determination.
My smile quickly faded as we neared Sookie’s property, however. With my enhanced senses, I could see that the place looked incredible. I doubted it had ever looked so good, even when it was originally built. Perhaps I should send Herveaux a box of Milk Bones? Getting back to the matter at hand…
My nerves didn’t stem from fear of the property condition, but in how Sookie would view the changes to her home. The old house and surrounding grounds had been sorely in need of repairs since I’d met her, and presumably long beforehand as well, but the job that fucking maenad and her crazy cronies did to the Stackhouse homestead was unbefuckinglievable! I couldn’t imagine letting her continue to live in such filth and disrepair, even if she had shunned me completely. I simply had to help her. It was reprehensible that Compton had done nothing to help her the whole time he was vehemently declaring, “Sookeh is mine!” to all who would listen. Now I could only hope that she wouldn’t be too pissed off at my “highhandedness.”
I set us down on the front lawn and helped her untangle herself from my grip. I could feel her curiosity at my nervousness, but before she could question me, she looked around and noticed the changes around her. I watched with rapt attention as her eyes took in everything: the driveway was freshly graveled with interlocking white quartz stones and a brick border, and the landscaping was impeccably done. The workers had better kept any and all original foliage as I instructed; who knew what her beloved Gran had planted? So it was safer to keep everything, groom all existing foliage and plant new coordinating items as accents. The house had fresh insulation underneath all new vinyl siding; the windows, eaves, soffits and roof were completely torn off and redone. There was now an outside shed and a garage, both behind and slightly to the left of the main house; the garage looked more like a small barn so it stayed within the motif of the property. The large porch was repaired and painted, and all new wicker furniture adorned it. There was also a brand new porch swing that was rocking slightly in the breeze. I had to admit, I was impressed.
Her emotions were all over as she observed her home. “Eric,” she whispered with her voice rough from tears I could smell. “What did you do?” I didn’t bother answering her, I assumed it was rhetorical.
It was impossible for me to garner her true feelings on all the changes, as I don’t believe she knew herself what she was feeling just yet judging from her emotions. She took my hand and began to slowly pull me towards her house, her constant flux of emotions threatening to consume me. If she felt so strongly all the time, this bond might prove to be a problem on occasion. Even as I thought it, I knew I’d never trade our bond whether it caused minor problems or major catastrophes… I loved her and would share everything I could with her, even her overly strong emotions.
She appeared to be in an almost trance-like state as she ascended her porch steps with me in tow. Her near catatonia was broken when I swung her front door open. A gasp escaped her, followed quickly by a loud sob. I truly wondered if she was angry for a moment when she dropped my hand and dashed inside, leaving me stranded on the porch. My rescinded invitation prevented me from entering, but I was content to watch her from afar until she turned and noticed me still outside.
“What’s wrong, Eric? Don’t you wanna see the house with me too?” she asked with a tear streaked face and timid voice.
“I would love nothing more, dear one, than to share in this moment with you,” I paused and placed my palm against the invisible barrier that barred my entry. “But I cannot. You rescinded my invite last evening when you threw me out, my love.”
“Oh mylanta! I’m so sorry, Eric,” she laughed and cried at the same time as she hurried to invite me back inside.
I stepped over the threshold and was instantly assaulted by my very excited hybrid. I snatched her up and hugged her tightly. “Do you like it, Sookie?” I asked quietly, the apprehension in my voice evident even to my ears.
“Eric, it’s amazing,” she began peppering my face with kisses. “It’s highhanded and ridiculous and probably cost more than Pam can spend in a year, and I’m dying to know how the hell you got it done so fast,” she rambled. “But I’m so grateful.”
I took a quick moment to explain that some of the things had to be taken away to be professionally cleaned; linens, clothing and some furniture was damaged too heavily to be quickly restored and required the help of experts, according to what Alcide explained earlier. I set her down and followed her with rapt attention as she jetted room to room, examining everything. Whatever the cost was, seeing Sookie this happy made it well worth every dime.
After giving her several minutes to appreciate the restorations, I reminded her that we were required to meet with the king shortly so I needed her to get ready. I promised her we could go over everything in detail later, but for now we really had to hurry. She quickly agreed, after kissing me several dozen more times, and bounded off to freshen up. I took the opportunity to call the king and let him know we’d likely be a few minutes late.
When he tried to threaten me again, stating that he’d given us a deadline, I reminded him of how easily I could dispatch of him and take his place on the throne. I also reminded him of how many powerful allies I’d likely made over the years, insinuating that I could simply take Sookie and whisk her away forever. That bought us a little more time and shut him up temporarily. Both were quite welcome events in my book.
In no time at all, Sookie was finished getting ready and was asking to leave so we could “get this bullshit with that miserable bastard over with.” I couldn’t agree more with her sentiments. After complimenting her on her appearance and stealing a few kisses, we set off toward Compton’s. As much as I wanted to take a leisurely stroll and savor each moment with my mate, we really needed to get over there before he got his shorts into too much of a twist.
The signing of the contracts was fairly uneventful business wise, though Compton did try several times to sway Sookie’s loyalty towards me. She tried to be gracious for quite some time before finally giving in and losing her temper with her former lover.
“Look, Bill,” she began as I felt her ire rising, “I’ve tried to be kind tonight, but now you’re getting on my last nerve. I won’t ever come back to you. Ever. Eric is my mate and my bonded. I love him, not you. And I don’t trust you any farther than I can throw you. So either be professional in our dealings, your majesty, and keep our fucking deal or I’ll just crispy-critter your ass quick-like.”
I wasn’t sure what made my dick harder, faster: her admission of love for me, publicly, or the steely tone in her voice as she threatened that fucktard once more. Either way, I was granite hard again instantly, my cock twitching in my pants in an effort to reach her.
Bill conceded to leave us in peace, though I doubted he truly meant it, and we took our leave with our copies of the signed contract in hand. We were both very quiet as we left Compton’s home and set back off toward Sookie’s on foot, but the silence wasn’t uncomfortable. We both just seemed to be lost in thought. We walked hand in hand, our linked arms just swinging gently as we strolled peacefully, like we had endless time ahead of us and not a worry in our minds. I’d never walked like this with someone before, not since I was a child and took walks by the sea with my mother. This was glorious.
“Eric?” Sookie said quietly, shaking me from my reverie. I hummed in response, so she continued, “I don’t think I love you anymore…”
Before I could get a word out, Sookie spoke the words that saved my heart from certain destruction, “I know I do. I’m sorry it took me so long to see it.” She went on to explain how she know knew that so much of her feelings for Bill were due to constantly ingesting large amounts of his blood repeatedly, and that now that my blood had rid her system of his, she could see the truth. It had always been me she was drawn to, from the night that we first met at Fangtasia. Bill’s blood had influenced her, turning her against me. She admitted to fighting her feelings for me out of fear and doubt that I could ever love anyone, let alone her. Someday I hoped to truly rid her of the ridiculous self-loathing that the ignorant humans had instilled in her, but for now I was just grateful that she finally accepted we were meant for each other.
Sookie spoke of all the hurt she’d endured at the hands of Bill, the townsfolk, and even her own mother. She told me of her Uncle Bartlett and what he’d done to her. I was grateful to Compton for the first time ever for killing that mother fucker! While I would have loved to do it myself, I was pleased that he’d never bother Sookie again and I didn’t have to endure her wrath in making that happen. She told me more about her Gran, and how Adele Stackhouse had saved Sookie in so many ways; how she’d run her brother off with a shotgun; how she had helped Sookie learn to control her telepathy, always calling it a gift rather than a curse; and mostly, how she’d loved her, unconditionally.
As we walked, I found myself sharing intimate details of my life with her. We spoke of my human life and the loss of my family, we spoke of the dreams I’d had as a youth that were squashed with my desire for vengeance. I told her of the battle that had ultimately ended my human life and of Godric finding me on my death pyre. I recounted his offer of life and the first few hundred years with him. I spoke briefly of finding Pam and choosing to become a Maker. I spoke of many events, things I’d never shared with another soul. I felt as if the weight of a thousand lifetimes, of regrets, of unanswered dreams, had been lifted from my shoulders with each new thing I disclosed. It was an odd, strangely freeing sensation to open myself up so completely to someone else.
I told her quickly that Desmond wanted to meet with us in a few days, that he had information for her. I asked her permission to be present, though I knew she truly had little choice in my attendance, and was pleased when she agreed easily. I also told her about what I had really done with Russell. I hated to ruin this wonderfully relaxing walk with news of the psychopathic King, but it was necessary for her safety to be well informed. I explained in detail the reasoning behind my decision, as well as my actual talk with ‘spirit Godric’ which I had previously glossed over. I had expected her to fly off the handle and begin screaming at me, but instead she simply took it all in and waited for me to finish before speaking.
“What are you planning to do about him now, Eric?” she questioned calmly. “I mean, you can’t just leave him there. Not only is it just too cruel, even for that crazy fucker, but if he were to escape he’d kill us all and goodness only knows what else he’d do.”
There was no arguing with her logic, so I didn’t try. I explained that I planned to dig him up in a week or so and stake him in his weakened state. I admitted that I had originally planned to leave him there until he did escape, hoping that he’d end me once he did. Sookie had no interest in becoming Vampire, and I had no interest in eons without her, so in my world it was a win-win scenario. That was the only time throughout the whole discussion that Sookie got a little uppity. She ranted that I couldn’t end my life, etcetera and etcetera. I reminded her about our bond and status as mates, refreshing her knowledge on living without your other half. After several tense minutes, we agreed to revisit the subject at a later date.
It finally dawned on me that we’d been walking for quite a while, and that we’d long since passed Sookie’s farmhouse. Gently pulling us to a stop I asked, “Where are we going, dear one?”
She smiled sweetly up at me and said, “To one of my favorite places in the world. I’ve never taken anyone there before, and I’d like to show it to you.” She pulled on my hand gently to get us walking again as she continued, “It’s my place of peace and refuge. It’s where I go when I need to feel whole again. Will you join me, my love?”
Lead the way, Sookie, for I would follow you anywhere, I silently vowed with a smile on my face.
Okay my lovelies… any idea where they’re headed or what’s coming next? I’m betting that the citrus you’ve all been waiting for has finally arrived…
Love and hugs to all – thanks for taking this journey with me!