It was happening again.
As I gripped my head in astonishment, Eric attacked me through our bond and overloaded me with his unchecked adoration, just like he had that morning on the roof. There was no control in him. No restraint. He was furious at me, but only because as usual, he thought I was underselling myself. I didn’t value my talents, Fae or fornication, as greatly as he did. My insecurity while pleasuring him made no sense to him at all. So he crashed into my mind with everything he had. His love. His need. His bewilderment. His ecstasy.
He made it clear. No one pleased him as I did. Never had and never would. In a word, I staggered him.
I sobbed under his assault, cradling my head in my hands. Never would I have guessed that Eric Northman was capable of emoting so wildly. He was always so still. So flinty and unsentimental.
I fell away from his lap, unable to support myself, even on my knees.
But it didn’t matter. I was naked and on his desk through no movement of my own. He loomed above me, already in position to act on his thoughts.
My spine propelled me towards him, arching against the cool wood beneath me, offering my body to him without consulting me first.
“Now, little Fae,” he spoke sotto voce. “It’s my turn.”
That was my only warning.
He gripped my thighs and drove deep, forcing my tight body into accepting all of him at once. He was huge. Bigger than I’d ever felt before.
“ERIC!” I screamed. I threw my arms behind me and gripped the ledge, bracing myself as he pumped mercilessly. God in heaven, I’d never felt anything so violent and good at the same time.
My core clenched him with choking fervor and he roared so loudly the furniture shook. “Again!” he bellowed at me from his dizzying height, fucking me savagely, pushing every last nerve inside me into spread-eagle tautness and frisking them lusciously. “Let them hear! Tell them who owns you! Tell them no one else satisfies you!”
I sobbed his name again. He had been right before. I was beyond shame when I was with him. I didn’t give a damn who heard us or if he wanted me to scream for him. I was an animal. Rutting. And I loved it. I screamed again and begged loudly. “Don’t stop,” I pleaded, looking at him desperately. “It’s so good so fucking good…please!…you’re so beautiful, baby…so big…fuck me!”
He yanked me, slamming my ass into his groin, and howled.
I had no idea that my lustful scent had precipitated his frenzy. Just like I didn’t know that even now it was changing, kaleidoscoping into smug, carnal satiation as my pussy was impaled. If I’d asked him, Eric would have described it as startling specific. I was now emitting the scent of a hard-to-please goddess who’d found paradise on his splittingly-enormous cock. He would have explained that, while only moments before, the supes in this bar were being driven crazy with hope when they scented my lust, they were now muttering with envy and disappointment as my scent informed them that only one man was capable of fucking me happy, and he was currently proving it.
“Yes!” I cried again. “Please, Eric. You feel so good, I can’t stand it.”
Our bond shifted instantly. I heard him breathe deeply.
He slowed his frantic pace.
I shook my clouded eyes and looked up at him hazily. “Yes, baby.”
His expression was fathomless as he sank himself completely, and then stilled. I squeaked with loss, desperate for his rhythm. “What’s wrong?”
His eyes were round again. His anger gone. He looked lost. “I…”
I rolled my hips, urging him to move again. “What? Did you want to stop?”
Greed surged in him and he tugged my hips, locking into me tight. That was a big, fat no.
I smiled encouragingly and rose up on my elbows. “Tell me.”
He leaned forward, bringing his face closer to mine. He began to move again in slower, fuller strokes. I sighed contentedly. Any way he wanted it, that was how I liked it. I rose up a tiny fraction more and rubbed my lips into his fanged mouth.
“Eric.” I whispered it. It wasn’t meant for the bar crowd. It was just for him. I loved him. I pushed it hard into his head as I kissed him over our undulating bodies.
He took my hand and placed it over his warm, albeit unbeating, heart.
“More,” he asked softly.
“More what?” God, his lips were distracting. What he was saying?
He pressed my hand harder into his pale skin. “Your Light, lover. Give me more.”
I leaned back from him, arching over and over into his lazy thrusts. “Why?”
He smiled and rubbed his fingers over mine. “Because it is yours.”
I grinned at him. I couldn’t help it. His plain words got to me more than fancy poetry ever could. “I don’t know how. I might blast you.”
“Try,” he entreated. “Think of me and try.”
I’d never shot him on purpose before. It had always just happened. Heat of the moment kind of thing. I splayed my hand wide and concentrated on him. “Okay,” I whispered. I closed my eyes and dove into him. He continued to move, holding me close and plunging deep. His hand stayed over mine. My head tipped back and I exhaled softly. Our bond was monolithic now. Whether it was because it was now permanent, or because we were making love, I didn’t know, but it pulsed inside me as surely as his physical body did. I thought of how much I loved him. How he meant more to me than any single creature on this earth. How I prayed to God to let me keep him forever without being turned. I didn’t ever want to leave him. I was stronger, calmer, a more complete version of myself with him than I ever was alone.
The need to speak choked me. I needed a word. A word that wasn’t overused to the point of sterility. I had only one word that I’d never used before, one that embodied how much he meant to me, one that fit him, no matter what our official status was.
I pressed his heart and leaned my forehead into his throat.
“My husband,” I whispered.
Light detonated under our hands. We went rigid, electricity exploding between us and riding our blood into every last nerve ending. Screaming, climaxing, electrocuting each other, we were powerless to do anything but endure as the most exquisite pleasure imaginable stretched us to the limit and burst through our confining skins. I gasped for air. Eric groaned and rumbled above me, a mixture of human and vampire sounds escaping his chest. I felt him erupt inside me, his hot semen spilling deep. I clutched him harder, so afraid that tears pricked my eyes. What had happened? What had I done?
I moaned against him, shaking my head as the last of the waves shivered their way out of us. “I’m sorry. I didn’t…I don’t…”
He collapsed forward, his strength obliterated. Crushed but uncaring, I wrapped my arms and legs around him and held him tight. “I’m sorry,” I stroked his back apologetically. “Say something.”
He snaked his arms under my back until he was supporting me with them while cradling my head in his hands. His face was buried in my throat. Slowly, he began to lap, his smooth tongue darting in and out, tasting me. I murmured softly.
At length, he lifted his head and looked down at me. Once again, I’d scraped his expression raw. I kept petting him anxiously, coaxing him to speak. His fingers burrowed deep into my hair and he cocked his head, regarding me. He lowered his nose against my cheek and inhaled me until his lungs could hold no more.
“I owe you a dollar,” he said at last. “You’ve overcome everything that I am. You’ve broken me, lover.”
Staring up into his formidable gaze, I couldn’t help the snort of disbelief that escaped me. That was the last thing I was expecting him to say. “Don’t be ridiculous. I didn’t break you. I shot you again. Are you okay?”
He didn’t answer. One of the many things I was learning. When Eric felt overwhelmed or uncertain, he chose silence.
The door burst open and Pam swooped in like a hawk.
Eric stood up instantly, our bodies still joined, and hissed territorially while I jerked into a sitting position.
“Jeez, Pam!” I shrieked in embarrassment, hiding my nudity against his chest. I peeked at her from just under his chin. Oh, my God. I was wrapped around him like a slutty fang-banging whore, my legs spread wide and locked around his ass as he stood deep between them. There was no hiding what we were doing.
The vampire screeched to a halt in the door frame. Her nose flared. Her pupils dilated. Her fangs fell. “What happened?” she demanded.
Eric had cupped my head in one hand and splayed the other wide across my back. A shielding gesture. “I’m dick-deep in my tinkerbell, Pam. What does it look like?”
“Hey!” I took umbrage. He shushed me and glared at his progeny.
“Get out,” he snarled at her. “This isn’t for your eyes.”
She inhaled sharply again. I couldn’t really blame her. Even to my human nose, I could pick up sex and electrical remnants. To a vampire’s nose, it probably smelled like lightening had struck one of those 70s key parties. In reality, I’d electrocuted her maker. Of course she was wary.
She eyed him suspiciously. “You’re all right?” she asked him, hesitating to obey. And something else. She kept sampling the air. Something in it was disconcerting her.
“Of course,” he snapped angrily. “Do I look damaged?” He was brushing my hair over my shoulder, sweeping it carefully through his long fingers, but not looking at me.
It was weird being naked and ignored at the same time. I spoke up, needing to assuage her distrust. “I wouldn’t hurt him, Pam. Honest. I just…”
Eric put a finger to my lips, stopping me. “I said leave, dear one. My bonded and I are not to be disturbed.”
Pam’s head went up at the term. I tensed, worried that she’d been unaware of his intention to claim me. But she said nothing, nor did she appear particularly angry. Instead, she merely bowed her head in compliance. “Your guests are here, when you’re ready.” She turned to leave, but glanced my way. “Welcome. Sister.”
And she was gone. I expelled a shaky breath, still red as punch with embarrassment and pleased as hell that Pam had given me her equivalent of a gushing adoption.
Eric continued to play with the ends of my hair. He turned back into me and nudged his chin along my forehead. “Forgive her. That won’t happen again.”
I pushed back, settling my hands back on his desk, looking him over from head to our joined hips. “And you told her the truth? You’re all right?”
He smiled and put my hand over his heart again. “Many things happen when I make love to you, but injury isn’t among them.”
I turned my hand away from him and held it up for us to inspect. My fingers and palm looked so ordinary that I shook my head in befuddlement. “I don’t know what you do to me, Eric, but it scares the crap outta me.”
He chuckled and brought my hand to his lips, kissing and mouthing the backs of my fingers. “I enchant you, lover. That’s why you keep giving me the best fuck of my life.”
I blushed and his smile turned wicked. “Didn’t Compton tell you as much?”
I turned even redder. I didn’t like to hear that name, especially when Eric and I were still coupled. I shrugged and looked away. “He did. But he had reasons to flatter me. You don’t.”
He must have felt my discomfort. His grin dropped and he pulled me up from the desk into a mated hug with him. “Forgive me,” he murmured. “That was ugly of me. And you’re right. I have no reason to lie to you, Sookie. You’re the most extraordinary lover I’ve ever known. You destroy me without even trying.”
In the same position as when we flew, sans our clothes, I held onto him with the same ferocity. “I just want you, Eric. I don’t want to think of Bill ever again.”
His arms tightened around my back. I sensed his anger at Bill and himself for mentioning him, but he said nothing. At length, he urged me to my feet, slipping free from me in the process.
“We must go.”
I nodded, reaching for my dress on the floor. Once again, it fell to pieces in my hands. “Dammit all,” I muttered and held it up to him accusingly. “Now what? Shall I read their minds naked?”
He was already in his pants when he looked up and chuckled. “Never, lover. That sight belongs to me.”
He walked over to a large stack of shallow boxes in the corner and selected two, one twice as large as the other. “Here,” he handed them to me.
One box was La Perla. The other was Dolce & Gabbana. I opened them and found $200 worth of pretty underwear and a nude-pink, short dress made from clouds. Or so it felt like. I slipped on the black lace, then the nude clouds with their halter-top bust, and turned to him. The couture, ragged edges kissed my knees while the bodice held me as lovingly as Eric did. I held still under his gaze. I felt womanly and delicate as his eyes moved over his choice.
“Do you like it?” I asked quietly. I didn’t really need to. I could feel his masculine approval fondling me, even at a distance.
He sighed regretfully. “It begs me to bite you. It’s a shame that it too will be ripped apart.”
I gasped softly. My beautiful new dress already had a death sentence. “You wouldn’t,” I said, holding my hands over the front. “It’s so pretty.”
“It’s too late,” he rasped darkly. “I can already feel it under my hands when I tear it to pieces. I will not spare it.”
Throbbing, slithering heat moved through me and once again, I was pathetically eager for him. I mewled at the images he’d dumped in my head. His head shot to one side and he growled. “Stop.”
“Stop what?” I asked, clenching my thighs together, willing the ache to lessen.
“Stop thinking about sex. You smell aroused. Your scent will attract attention.”
“It’s your fault,” I accused snippily. “You’re the one talking about ripping my clothes off.”
“Stop!” His eyes burned butane blue, his fangs dropping once again.
I slammed my eyes shut. He looked so dangerous and sexy, I couldn’t bear another second. “Then don’t look at me!” I shouted back. “Don’t look at me. Don’t talk to me in your stupid, sexy voice. Don’t fill our bond with how you feel. Just don’t! You’re driving me crazy!”
I was surrounded in an instant, solid arms and a warm wall of muscle pulled me into a rough embrace. “Ridiculously sexy girl,” he hissed above me. I kept my eyes squeezed shut. This wasn’t helping. His soft shirt buffered his hard body against me. His enormous frame swallowed me up and made me safe and desired. His angry passion pulsed through our bond, despite my plea. He couldn’t help it. Apparently I drove him just as nuts.
“How am I to protect you when you smell so fucking good?” he demanded, fisting my hair and yanking my head back so that he could neck me. “How am I supposed to even rest, now that I have the daytime to fuck you as well as the night?”
“Stop,” I threw his entreaty back at him. “You’re making it worse.” And he was. My body was starving for him. Forgotten was our earlier tryst. Even as his come trickled down my inner thigh, my pussy was already quivering in anticipation for more. I put my hands on him, trying to push him away, but ended up groping his arms in naked appreciation.
“I can’t have it,” he grunted against me. His hand slid under my dress and slipped into my brand new panties. I gasped and moaned as he found my clit and began to work it mercilessly with two fingers. “Come. Immediately,” he ordered. “I refuse to let them near you when you’re horny. They’ll think of nothing but fucking you.”
He wasn’t gentle. I guess we didn’t have time to tease my orgasm out of me. He wanted it quick and dirty, a strategic finger fuck designed to cool me down. I felt his irritation. And his excitement at my unquenchable lust for him. His fingers moved with vampiric speed. And I begged for it.
“Yes,” I hissed greedily, hitching my leg over his other arm, spreading myself on his fingers. I clutched his neck, straining into him. “Please, Eric-,”
“Shut up,” he growled. “Don’t talk. Don’t tempt me. Just come.”
Even his anger turned me on. The lack of sweetness, the intense friction, the impatience for me to do as I was told. Holding him tightly, I went rigid in his arms, his talents getting me off in record time. I came hard, gritting my teeth, trying not to scream. I knew that would only torment him further. I shivered and jerked against him, riding out the last of my orgasm. It must have pleased him. His chest expanded against mine as he inhaled deeply.
Whatever he smelled, it met his approval.
“Good girl,” he crooned into my hair, slowing his fingers until they were tapping my clit, making me gasp with each residual bolt of pleasure. He removed his hand and resettled my underwear and dress. He took me by the shoulders and shook me gently. “Don’t. Think. About. Sex.” He landed hard on each word.
Still shaking, I nodded.
His hand on my lower back, he escorted me out of his office.
We had work to do.
Pam met us discreetly outside of his door.
“The weres are downstairs, as you requested,” she informed him quietly. She ignored me, but she did that head-cocking thing that told me she was still scenting whatever had been puzzling her before. She didn’t mention it.
“And the vampire?” Eric prodded.
She nodded. “At your booth. I didn’t need silver. He wished to speak with you.” She paused and looked at him meaningfully. “He’s with the Authority.”
I felt Eric go tense at my side.
“His name?” he asked stonily.
“Domingo. Paulo Domingo.”
“Old. Four to five hundred years.”
“His interest in me?”
“He wasn’t shy. He’s here about the clusterfuck with the monarchs and why the whole thing involved a human woman.” She dropped her lordly gaze at me briefly.
Eric considered. “He seems unaware of her status?”
Pam shrugged subtly. “Unknown. He wants to talk to the sheriff who also appeared to be unnecessarily involved in all this.”
Eric grunted in understanding. “What’s he drinking?”
Pam snorted. “Tru Blood. Fucking boyscout.”
I felt Eric’s relief, despite his look of indifference. His possessive grip on our bond lessened slightly. I guess he felt this Authority guy would expect him to share me, as courtesy to a guest. I thought of Eric’s rage to stifle my scent around these people. The thought of other vamps drinking my blood helped considerably.
“Pam?” I ventured.
She looked down at me. “Sookie.”
“Could you turn up the AC? Like, a lot?”
Her eyes narrowed. “Flushed, are we?”
I looked up at Eric. “It’ll help. With…your request?”
His brow arched and he turned to Pam. “Do it. Freeze this place.”
Pam looked skeptical but nodded. “Very well. He’s waiting for you.”
She turned away and Eric started urging me towards the back of the bar. “Are you sure you want me with you?” I asked. “I can’t read him.”
Still guiding me, he nodded. “He already knows of you. The sooner he meets you, the less mystery will be built around you. As far as he knows, you’re the cousin of a pet to the Queen and the ex-lover of one of her subjects. You came to me when he was kidnapped and I discovered him in collusion with the Edgington. My involvement as well as yours can end there.”
“Except you entombed Edgington,” I reminded him.
“With their blessing. Hush now. Don’t speak unless spoken to.”
I immediately slipped into the role of a meek human pet and stood discreetly by his side as he greeted the stately-looking vampire in his VIP booth. With a dark complexion and smooth, Spanish hair, he smiled benignly at the Nordic Sheriff of Area Five. “Mr. Northman, I presume.”
Eric bowed his head politely. “Señor Domingo. Welcome to my establishment.”
I was still as an oak. Given the stakes, I was prepared to play the inferior, just this once. I kept my eyes on the floor.
Domingo gestured, “Please sit with me. We have much to discuss.”
Eric smiled. Inwardly, I winced. I knew that smile. It meant absolutely nothing. I prayed it was because I knew him so well now that I noticed it never reached his eyes. “Thank you.” He sat and signaled me to do the same. I perched obediently at his side, hoping like hell I looked submissive and beneath my company. I felt a chill in the air. Thank God for Pam. I held back a shiver.
Domingo gestured to me. “Is this the little lady whom I’ve heard so much about?”
Eric snorted condescendingly. “Perhaps. Are you referring to our recent little spat between royals?”
“Precisely,” the dark vampire deigned. “The Authority are quite distressed. The power play was bad enough. Topped with a human execution on live tv and the murder of the Magister – a murder I’m told you witnessed – we’ve graduated from a spat to a cause célèbre ass fuck.”
“Indeed,” Eric mused. “However we can help clear this up, my people are at your disposal.”
Domingo smiled with a reptilian pull of his lips. Even with my eyes downturned, I caught the flare of his nostrils.
“Excellent. You can start by relinquishing the girl.”