I was several hours into my shift at Merlotte’s, and I was in a foul mood from all the nasty thoughts I had been hearing from the bar patrons. Claudine’s lesson had done wonders on my ability to focus in on individuals and hear what they were thinking, but I think I might have rather not known some of the things I over heard. For example, I was getting a pretty detailed run of events on what Arlene and Rene had done last night in bed. It was pretty disgusting seeing him nude in her mind. Also, half the people in the bar were thinking about how Jason had killed those girls and how he should be tarred and feathered.
“Sookie,” Sam said jarring me out of my grumbling thoughts. “Can you get the bottles out of the Tru-Blood case. The box is scooted under the bar over there.” He pointed. “And put them in the fridge.”
“You got Tru-Blood?” I asked surprised. “I thought the case you bought last year went bad because no vampires come in.”
“Yea I know,” he said pouring a glass of beer for Arlene’s order. “But there’s been rumors that a vampire moved to Bon Temps. Best to be prepared.”
“What?” I gasped. Oh no!
“Yea to the old Compton house.” He sat the beer on a tray and Arlene walked up.
“If you ask me, they ought to string em up.” Arlene said with animated expression. “Can’t no good come from one of those dead freaks livin’ here. He’s probably the one who killed those girls.”
I was just about to run away screaming but I held my ground. I dismissed Arlene’s hypocritical rudeness. Who in the hell knew about Bill Compton? He was dead and I didn’t want anyone knowing about him. If someone knew about him then there might be an investigation when he turns up missing.
“Where’d you hear about the vampire Sam?” I asked him, curious.
Arlene answered for him. “Rene saw the vamp driving down the dirt road that goes to the Compton place. It was about a week ago.”
“The same dirt road that goes to my house?” I asked. This can’t be good. “Why was Rene on my dirt road?” He was following me? I thought I tricked him.
“Oh, he was lookin’ for Jason to talk to him about their work shift or somethin’. He said he stopped by and talked to you and your Gran. You don’t remember?” No that would have been a few days before I arrived.
I grumbled inwardly. This was Bull Shit! Rene has been watching me since I got here and now I knew why. He thought I was associating with Bill Compton since he was my neighbor. Who would have thought being neighbors with a vampire was enough of a crime to get you murdered by a serial killer. Or least a possible target of one.
“Oh yea, now I remember.” I lied. “I had no idea a vampire was living so close to me.” I tried to look scared.
Arlene made a sympathetic face. “Honey. You want me to send Rene out tonight to check on your Gran?”
“No,” I shook my head. Hell no! “She never goes outside at night or answers the door. So she’s safe. Those fangers can’t get inside without an invitation. Besides if Gran sees someone lurking around at night she’s liable to get the shotgun and blow their brains out. I wouldn’t want Rene to get hurt.” It was subtle warning to keep her filthy boyfriend away from the house. Gran would shoot Rene’s head off. She already knows he’s the murderer. She knows everything. In the show she let him in because she knew and trusted him and he killed her.
She nodded and walked away with her tray. I stood there a minute while this new information about Rene’s reasons for watching me sunk into my brain. He had been thinking since Bill lived next door Gran and I were being friendly neighbors to him. All the more reason to get him handled as soon as possible. I bent down behind the bar and reached for the bottles of Tru-Blood, pulling them out of the box and neatly sitting them on the floor to be transferred to the fridge. I couldn’t see my section and no one could see me as I crouched on the floor except Sam who was standing beside me.
“Sookie,” Sam said looking down at me. I stood up curiously looking up at him with a bottle in each hand, wondering why his voice had turned wary and cautious. He nodded to a booth in my section. “Looks like you got a new customer.” He said worried.
I followed his line of sight and turned to look at the table he was indicating. All color drained from my face in that very instant and my hair stood on end like a puffed up cat. I lost grip on one of the Tru-Blood bottles still in my hand and it slipped from my palm to the floor with a shattering crash. Synthetic blood splattered all over the ground and Sam’s shoes.
Eric Northman! My brain shut down and I couldn’t even think straight. It was hard to fathom being in the same room with him. When you sit around watching a show it is all so far away. You never think you will be right there, part of the action. Plus, he was oozing seductive charm.
I was dimly aware that half the people in the bar turned to look at me, curious about the loud commotion from the dropped bottle. My eyes didn’t leave the new arrival sitting in the booth staring back at me with icy-blue eyes, his elbows on the table and his hands neatly folded together against his mouth and chin, hiding some amused expression.
Did he know about Bill’s disappearance and he had come to investigate? That thought hit me first since I had just been talking about Bill with Sam and Arlene. I thought he wasn’t even aware of Bill’s presence in his area until the night he had taken me to Fangtasia. Or is he here because he found out who I am? Oh god! Maybe he was just here because he was checking on a town in his territory. Unlikely. I could only hope! Why was he here!?
6 hours earlier…
It was about an hour before sunset. Eric usually rose a little early from his slumber. It was one of the benefits that came with age. He was staring at his laptop waiting for the video feed to load. He hoped it had recorded something while he was in his daytime rest. He was curious what the blonde haired beauty would reveal to him this time and he was also anxiously anticipating seeing her again, even if it was only on a video feed for now. He smiled smugly wondering how she would respond to his note and it’s subtle hints that he knew who she was.
The window popped up on his computer and he let out a sharp unnecessary breath as she walked into the shack and picked up his note. His lips parted in a wry smile as she ran out of the door and came back in a few seconds later. He had rattled her. Good! That was the response he had hoped for.
Eric straightened up in his chair becoming more alert as he watched Sookie lean against the wall and sneak her hand down her pants. This he was not expecting…
“Well, well…” he whispered. His fangs slid out with a loud click as he heard the first little whimper escape her lips. He rubbed his hand over his mouth to try to stifle his growing lust, as if that would wipe it away. Another loud moan came through the speakers and filled the room making him shudder with want. He could hardly believe what he was seeing.
His hand glided to the raging bulge in his silk boxers as he watched her every move. He had thrown the boxers on when he rose but he still had not gotten dressed.
A huge grin graced his face as he became mesmerized with this woman. He reveled in his crafty idea of installing the camera and he was loving every second of his voyeurism. This moment made everything worth it.
He couldn’t help it anymore. He pulled down the waist band of his boxers and let his length spring free. Wrapping his hand around himself he almost closed his eyes in the feel of it but he didn’t want to miss a thing this woman did so his eyes stayed locked on the screen while he slowly rubbed his crotch.
Gods she was breathtaking. He couldn’t believe he had the pleasure of watching this creature swept away in her passion, and all because of him. She was doing this because of his promise to show her hours of pleasure if she came to Fangtasia. She was thinking of him while she pleasured herself!
She revealed in her last note that she refused to be claimed but how was he supposed to resist such a beautiful, tempting, woman such as her. One that not only possessed other worldly qualities such as telepathy and the sight, but who also seemed to have intelligence and wit in spades. On top of that whatever type of supernatural creature she was she apparently was meant to live thousands of years. Why had the gods blessed him with such an incredible little morsel?
A low grow rumbled from his throat vibrating his entire body as he pumped himself harder, his eyes glazing over watching her thrusting hips. When she reached her peak and his name huskily escaped her wet pink lips followed by a squeaky little growl it was too much. He leaned back in the chair and let himself fall into a pit of pleasure, stroking himself wildly at vampire speed. He longed so much to have her. To feel her. To touch her. To taste her. He could hardly stand it. Even a whiff of her sweet aroma would be enough to satisfy him for now.
Eric hissed as a the shock of his orgasm bolted through his body. His eyes were still locked on the screen with an intense leer and a string of foreign words came out of his mouth in a husky growl. His eyes closed and he waited a moment for the whirling sensation that spread through his body like a cozy blanket to pass. He savored and relished the feeling. He loved it. Maybe too much. Still feeling light as a feather he opened his eyes back up half way and looked to the screen.
A wicked grin formed on his lips as he watched her wipe her hand on a paper towel and throw it on the ground. He looked at the clock realizing the sun would have just gone down. He looked back at the video and closed it. He was sure he would be watching that many many more times. Quickly throwing on some clothes he dashed out of the room. Fangtasia wasn’t set to open for another hour.
Landing on the dirt patch in front of the shack he sniffed the crisp night air with his nose. He had learned caution in his long life. That’s why he was still alive. All he could smell was her faint scent wafting from the small wooden structure.
He licked his lips excitedly and walked in. He stood still for a moment just inside the doorway as the heavy scent of sex and lust slammed his senses. Did she not know how good his sense of smell was? She seemed to know everything else about him. Not all vampires possessed this ability but it was one of his gifts like flying. Both had been passed on to him from his maker Godric when Eric was born a vampire.
Each vampire always inherited at least two qualities from their maker and had at least two that were unique. Eric had passed on his ability to fly and his ruthlessness to his child Pamela. His other ability was a photographic memory. Some things in life he wishes he couldn’t remember though. It had hardened him to emotion over the years, causing him to be distant to those who weren’t his child or maker. Sometimes he envied Godric’s gift of wisdom or his ability to make a woman orgasm just by staring at her. Yes, that was a vampire gift and Godric possessed it. Many a woman had fallen victim to Godric’s burning gaze. Why couldn’t he have gotten that gift? It would be quite fun.
It’s not like his maker needed that gift either. He didn’t even use it anymore, opting to suppress it as much as he could out of respect for humans. Ug. Oh but there was a time… his maker had been mischievous in the old days. He’ll never forget what Godric did to Queen Elizabeth the first, (the virgin Queen of England) at her inauguration as he stood in the pews. Staring her down across the court with his intense searing eyes, a lop-sided grin spread across his lips. Those were golden times.
Godric suppressed his vampiric stare but women still crumpled under his intense gaze even when he was not using his gift.
Eric turned his head to the paper towel that lay crumpled in the corner. Striding over and picking it up he held it in his hand like a priceless treasure. Her scent was so strong, so intoxicating. He brought it to his face and pressed it against his nose.
Breathing in heavily he closed his eyes and purred in a low growl. He carefully unwaded the paper towel and darted his tongue over the liquid there which was still wet. His eyes rolled back in his head. For the love of the gods this was torture. He had to see this woman tonight. He carefully folded it and slipped it in his pocket.
He walked over to the dog bowl and retrieved the note.
He chuckled. “Oh Miss Stackhouse. You are fooling no one my little vixen.” He said hoarsely.
He grinned smugly. “Yes I do. And you will soon find out you are playing with fire.”
“Mmm,” he growled. “It’s not nice to lie Miss Stackhouse.”
Eric frowned. This wouldn’t be the first time the police harassed his establishment. Usually it ended without consequence but a vampire feeding on a human in the bathroom could potentially cause problems for him with the Shreveport police department. This news would save him a minor headache.
Eric’s brow knitted with anger and a bit of concern. He was angry because he was fed up with fanatical humans targeting vampires. First drainers and now humans being killed just for associating with his kind? He wasn’t so concerned about the death of humans but Sookie at hinted in the note that she might be in danger and she was obviously willing to confront this killer herself. That could be a potentially deadly situation for her and he felt a streak of possessiveness and he wanted to protect her.
All the more reason they needed to become acquainted face to face as soon as possible. If he claimed her he could protect her from anything, but he’d do that anyway. He knew she was supposedly from a different world. He had learned that information overhearing her talk to the young vampire named Nut-sucker. His biggest concern was that he confronted her and she ran back to her world. Then he would never be able to find her.
Perhaps there was a more indirect solution. Maybe he could run into her ‘accidentally’ without an actual confrontation. He would need it to sound good though without giving away any clue that he was seeking her out personally.
First he needed to go back to Fangtasia and take care of this bar raid situation then he would head to Merlotte’s.
Back to Sookie at Merlotte’s…
I looked at the blonde Viking in my section with wide eyes from behind the bar. I was panicking. I had the urge to bolt right out of the bar and hop in my car and go home. But that wouldn’t do any good. He could just follow me. Keep Cool Sookie! I told myself.
I glanced over at Sam who was jumping around the spilled synthetic blood in disgust.
“Oh Sam!” I shrieked. “I’m so sorry. It just slipped out of my hand.”
“It’s okay Cher.” He said grabbing a clean towel to wipe off his shoes. “Just go take care of your customer and I’ll clean this up.”
“Okay, Sam. I’m really sorry.”
“Sookie.” He grabbed my arm as I turned toward the booth. “Be careful.” He looked over at Eric suspiciously.
I rolled my eyes and turned back to the sneaky vampire. He was still leering at me with one eyebrow raised. I stood for a moment staring at him from the bar. God he was handsome. I couldn’t believe I was about to meet Eric Northman face to face!
He looked slightly different than I remember from the TV show but almost the same. The only difference was a blonde splattering of stubble on his face that made him even sexier.
I grabbed an order pad and pen and slowly walked toward him. As I approached he never took his burning eyes off of me. Those sparkles were smoldering like blue lava and I could have sworn I saw his nostrils flare as I got closer. Dammit! I just realized that he may actually be able to recognize my scent from the shack. Surely his smell wasn’t that good.
I stood in front of him self-consciously and cleared my throat. I decided I was just going to act like I had no idea who he was.
“Hi, I’m Sookie. I’ll be your server.” I looked at my pad. “What can I get ya?”
He leaned back in his seat with a very faint grin etched on his stupid face!
“What is good here?” He asked in a rich seductive voice that went straight to my groin.
“Umm. Well the hamburgers and fries are good.” HA! Two can play this game. He’ll have to admit he’s a vampire right now because he can’t even eat.
“Alright, I will have that.” He said with a grin, raising a blonde eyebrow even higher.
“Fine,” I said with pursed lips. “Anything to drink?”
He glanced at my neck and licked his lips. WHAT! The nerve. I tried not to giggle. I had to bite my bottom lip which just brought his attention to my mouth.
“What are you offering?” He purred. “To drink?”
I narrowed my eyes. “Ice Tea, Coke, Pepsi, Water.”
“Water is fine.” He said amused.
I looked in his sexy eyes almost mesmerized. “Fine,” I muttered embarrassed. “I’ll have it out in a minute.”
I turned on my heel and walked to the bar.
“What did he want?” Sam asked me on my way to the fry cook window.
“Burger, Fries, Water.” I hissed.
Sam furrowed his brow in confusion and looked back over at Eric who was glaring back at the shifter.
I felt the Vikings searing eyes watching my every move as I scurried from table to table taking orders. Finally, when his order was ready I reluctantly grabbed the tray and headed back to his table.
I placed his plate in front of him.
“Mmm,” he said exaggeratedly. “Looks delicious.” Was he messing with me? What does he want?
He slowly pulled a paper towel out of his pocket and looked at me inquisitively. I watched him as he unfolded it and tucked it into the collar of his shirt like some people do when they eat.
What is he going on about? Does he think he’s fooling me? I know he’s a vampire, the vampire. Eric Northman. Adorable, gorgeous, sexified, irresistible… yes. I dropped my order pad when I realized it was the paper towel I used to clean myself in the shack. I saw the little pink swirls that were printed on that particular brand. My heart started beating faster.
I knew that very instant he knew exactly who I was. I thought about the time on the TV show Sookie had smelled a tiny little cracker under the sofa in Gran’s house when she had vampire blood. How could I be so stupid!? I had been over confident and it was now my down fall. He probably smelled my orgasm the second he had walked in the shack. How embarrassing! My face turned seven shades of red as I looked at him shame faced.
“Is everything okay?” he asked with a smirk, smoothing out the paper towel over his chest like a bib.
“Uh. Yea.” I muttered reaching down to pick up the pad.
I walked away without saying a word. I may know that he knows who I am. But does he know that I know that he knows who I am? My eyes crossed slightly. When I got back over to the bar I looked at his table. He stared at his plate for a minute before picking up a fork and knife. He started cutting into a French fry pitifully. I rolled my eyes and picked up a True-Blood before popping it into the microwave.
When it was done I stomped back over to his table and plopped it down. He looked up at me quizzically with large puppy eyes. My heart skipped a beat but I soon regained my resolve. Yea you’re not fooling anyone buddy.
“I know you’re a vampire.” I said smugly, putting my hand on my hip.
“You do?” His lips quivered. But his eyes couldn’t hide his craftiness. I should have known better. How the hell did he figure out who I was?
“Yes.” I sighed. “Why are you here?”
He leaned toward me and brought his finger up to beckon me closer. I bent down a little closer to him and he spoke in a hushed voice. I could have sworn he inhaled deeply but maybe I was just jumpy. This whole encounter was pretty nerve racking. “I heard a rumor that there were women being killed in this area. I came to investigate to see if it was vampire related.”
I straightened up. “Oh.” This made me pause. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe he didn’t know who I was. It wasn’t too far fetched to think that Eric had the ability to investigate what I said about women turning up dead in his area. It would have been as easy as picking up a newspaper to figure out two had been murdered in Bon Temps and Merlotte’s was the only public place in these parts. In fact, the article in the paper today even said Dawn was a waitress here. Maybe he was just trying to help me like I had asked.
He looked around me toward the bar and frowned. “Your boss doesn’t seem too happy that you are talking to me. Is he your boyfriend?”
“What?” I glanced back at Sam who was wiping out glasses with a white towel. He was still shooting daggers in Eric’s direction. “No, he’s just my boss.” I crossed my arms over my chest and tried to look tough. “Who did you hear these rumors from?”
“It was a big old hairy troll.” He said taking a sip of the Tru-Blood and scanning the room like he was looking for someone. I couldn’t help but laugh which ended up coming out more like a snort. He looked back into my eyes making my knees buckle. “Do you know anyone like that?”
“Nope,” I shook my head and clamped my mouth tight.
“Well that’s a shame Sookie…” He looked at my breasts and his eyes lingered. I nearly gasped as my jaw hit the floor. “Sookie… Stackhouse.” Oh, he was looking at my name tag. Or was he?
He tossed a hundred dollar bill on the table and rose to his full height. I had to take a step out of his way but he just moved closer, towering over me. I craned my neck to look up at him. Don’t faint Sookie!
“My name is Eric Northman. If you should see this troll will you send him to Fangtasia?” He grinned down at me, leaning in a bit. “I would like to talk to him face to face.”
I nodded, not realizing that my face was completely flushed red from holding my breath.
“Good.” He said, his nostrils flaring again. “It was a pleasure Miss Stackhouse.” He raked his eyes over me and turned around.
I watched his back as he strode, no strutted, out of Merlotte’s. I was left feeling completely aroused and flabbergasted at the same time. The man was insufferable, yet down right scrumptious. Did he know who I was or not? I was so confused but my guess was that there was about a 90% chance that the clever vampire had figured out I was the source leaving him cryptic notes.
There were a couple of reasons I was freaking out about this. One, he may force me to come to Fangtasia and read minds regarding the missing 60k in his bar like he had forced Sookie in the show. That was terrifying to me. I mean I didn’t want a vampire, namely Long Shadow, trying to kill me. I’m a wimp from a wimpy world. This is all new to me. Two, it took every ounce of my strength to resist the Viking. I couldn’t give into my desires right now because I needed his respect. I needed it for one very important reason. Godric. I needed to save Godric and that was more important to me than Eric Northman’s lick-able body of sin and his gracious plenty. I had a better chance of gaining Godric’s respect if he sensed his child respected me.
A/N: Eric struts to the doorway and glances back at you with blazing eyes. “I’ll wait for you in here.”