Chapter Eleven: Lessons
“Are you certain you did not drink too much?” Eric asked for the fifth time while he settled Sookie on his bed.
“Yes,” she said with a roll of her eyes. “You saw me walking just fine, right? I’m not slurring, am I?”
“No, but you are small, and Pam makes strong drinks. I was only on the phone with Long Shadow’s Maker for thirty minutes and you drank two of those gin and tonics.”
“I’m fine. Now come here!” she snapped, grabbing the front of his shirt and pulling him atop her. “I want to do naughty things to you.” Her legs wrapped tightly about his waist while her mouth sought his own.
“Do you now?” he laughed against her mouth before tangling his tongue with hers.
Pulling her tongue from his, she hissed, “Yes! You said I do a good job sucking you, and I want to do that again.”
Eric groaned pressing his growing erection into the mattress and wishing it were her mouth. “Maybe I should give you alcohol more often. Listen to that mouth!”
“There are better things I can do with my mouth than talk. Now take off your pants!”
Rolling them so that he was on his back with Sookie above him, Eric leered up at her. “Or, you could take them off for me,” he offered.
A sultry rumble rolled from the woman’s lips and she began crawling down his body, pausing to push the tail of his shirt above his abdomen and licking the hard lines of his muscles. When she arrived at the pathway of hair beneath his navel, she kissed her way to the button of his fly while her hands quickly went to work opening his pants. Eric lifted his hips when she began tugging the clothing down, and he laughed when she got them to his shoes and made a noise of frustration before working them off his feet. The vampire sat up slightly to remove his shirt once she had liberated his legs, and he sprawled out naked under her inspection.
“Get on your stomach,” Sookie commanded brazenly.
Eric lifted his eyebrows at the request. “That is not really conducive to your earlier request, is it?” he asked even as he rolled onto his belly.
“You’ve implied over and over that you’re mine, right?” Sookie asked a hint of amusement in her voice.
“I have, and I am,” he agreed, feeling her move behind him for a moment before she straddled his back. Her naked thighs were soon astride his ribs, and while she settled into place, he could feel the hot moisture of her nether lips against his flesh.
He moaned when she leaned forward, her hot sex sliding against him, and her plentiful breasts pressed firmly against his shoulder blades. When her mouth came to his ear and her warm breath caressed it, Eric was forced to bite back another groan of pleasure. Quietly, she whispered, “I’m allowed to explore what’s mine, right?”
“Oh, yes, Lover,” he answered heatedly, pressing his eyes shut while she ran her fingers along the sculpted muscles of his upper back. Her strong fingers massaged into his flesh, memorizing the planes and sharp reliefs as she planted kisses behind his ear and his nape. She pushed his golden tresses away, running her tongue across the hairline before tracing the hot, wet, muscle down his neck to between his shoulders. Her teeth gnashed at the thick cord of muscle between his neck and shoulder before her lips trailed hot kisses all the way down his back.
“Your ass is a work of art,” she commented huskily when she reached the small of his back, breasts smashed against the portion of anatomy she was complimenting. She kissed and dipped her tongue into the dimples of his lower back while her hands squeezed the sections of his buttocks that her breasts had not eclipsed. “It could compete as your best feature.”
Eric could only reply with a noncommittal grunt while she slid further down his body and bit his left cheek firmly before kissing down one leg and back up the other to bite his right cheek.
“Sookie,” he growled, “you better be planning on flipping me over soon.”
“Hmm,” she hummed thoughtfully, teasingly. “I suppose I could be motivated to stop marveling at this sculpture of an ass.” She gave her subject of scrutiny another playful nibble. “I would need something in return though.”
“Anything,” he snarled as she began kneading his buttocks like a kitten.
“It is actually two somethings,” she admitted.
“Anything,” he agreed again.
“First off, we’re doing that 69 thing. Secondly, you’re fucking me until you die for the day or I black out, whichever comes first.”
With lightning speed and dizzying results, Eric moved out from beneath her. She would have laughed if his next action had not taken her breath away. Without a moment to even comprehend the motion, Sookie found her body spun around, and dragged up the length of Eric’s chest until his mouth was buried in her sex and she was staring down at his. For more than a moment, Sookie sprawled across his body momentarily stunned into immobility as Eric worked his mouth against her. Once she regained her balance, she wriggled slightly, reaching for his member. Quickly, she realized her mouth could not meet its destination.
“Eric,” she gasped when his tongue snaked into her. “Eric, darlin’, I can’t reach you!” She strained toward the begging staff in front of her, but her vampire’s vice-like grip on her hips kept her from getting her mouth any closer.
With a grunt, she felt his chest arch away from her as he inclined his body, pushing Sookie closer to his groin. She moaned excitedly when his cock drew closer to her lips until they enveloped the hard column in a seemingly practiced motion.
Eric made a low sound in his throat when he felt Sookie’s mouth wrap around his cock. Her small, strong, hands gripped him firmly; one on his cock, the other cupping his balls while her head bobbed rhythmically. The sensations she stirred enthralled the vampire. Her right hand rocked against his shaft as her left squeezed and manipulated his scrotum, all while her tongue snaked around the head of his cock.
“So good,” Eric murmured between laps of his tongue. His fingers dipped inside of her well, coaxing more of her honey into his mouth. “You taste so good, Lover!” Encasing her nub between his careful teeth, his tongue flickered frantically against it. She shuddered against him, her thighs trembling near his ears, her mouth and hands speeding up as if to combat the urge to freeze and just feel.
There was an intensifying vibration against his cock, and it took Eric a second to realize Sookie was beginning to mumble incoherently under his technique. Surprisingly, she managed to keep her body in motion, still manipulating his cock up until her climax when her entire frame seized. Her channel clamped down on his thrusting fingers, her thighs shut tightly over his ears, and her mouth suctioned deliciously onto the end of his shaft. The sudden pressure the latter action created was enough for Eric to cry out in his own orgasm and sink his fangs into the flesh just lateral of her opening.
An explosion of blood burst into his mouth. Her body was pumping copious amounts of the crimson elixir to her sex, and his mouth was diverting the flow into his stomach. It took a great deal of will power to stint the cascade of blood, more than he cared to admit, but Eric began sweeping his tongue over the wound until it sealed.
Sookie was lying sprawled over his body. He could feel wetness trickling from her mouth and across his hip while she panted urgently atop him.
“Done already, Lover?” Eric asked innocently, slowly easing her body off of his own before draping his frame over hers. As she lay dazedly beneath him, Eric parted her thighs and slipped his length deep inside until his pelvis kissed hers.
“UH!” she sobbed, arching weakly beneath him.
“You have not passed out yet,” Eric asserted in a challenging tone. Her earlier domination of him had sparked a desire to reciprocate. As he drew back his hips slowly and reinserted swiftly, Sookie let out another small sob. She wailed as she felt his cock flex inside of her, and tears streamed from her eyes. “Do you want me to stop?” he growled against her ear tauntingly. “You are still awake.”
“Nooooo,” she moaned out while she tried to command her body to move in the way she intended. He had turned her into a marionette. Her limbs only jerked when he pulled the string he desired. Another delicious collision compelled an awe-inspiring arch of her back.
“You are so beautiful beneath me, Sookie,” he rasped in her ear, pushing his hips tightly against hers and flexing the muscles of his pelvic floor. Sookie’s leg jerked at the change of direction and a weeping howl poured from her lips.
“Eric,” she cried, her hips twitching while he continued to tense inside of her. The next time he withdrew, Eric hooked his elbow beneath her knee, pushing the limb toward her chest as he slammed back inside. “ERIC!” she screamed when he struck deeper than he ever had before. The woman beneath him was gasping for air, her eyes squeezed shut, her jaw clenched tightly as oxygen hissed between her teeth.
“Stay with me, Sookie,” Eric snarled when he felt her body going boneless before she could even climax. “You can sleep tomorrow.” His free hand dipped between their bodies to rub her clit, and Sookie’s body jolted in response, her eyes opening wide while a garbled moan spilled from her mouth. “Yes, Sookie, stay with me. My cock wants you to cum for it like you came for my mouth.”
Sookie whimpered in response to his words. Her body was not responding in any way she could recognize. Her legs were dead to her. Her lungs were burning. Her arms were trembling and weak. Her heart was pounding so frantically, she thought it might stutter to an exhausted halt.
Just as the woman was certain she would black out mid-fuck, Eric’s stroke shortened, and the thickest part of his shaft rubbed insistently against the most sensitive part of her opening. Between the surety of his thrusts and his perfectly pressured thumb on her clit, Sookie came undone in a matter of seconds. Her walls clamped down on him as she uttered one last muted howl, and she sobbed openly over the completion of her orgasm as Eric’s own answering cry coincided with his throbbing cock emptying inside of her.
Turning them onto their sides, Eric cradled the crying, gasping, woman in his arms, soothing her hair while she tried to regain control of her body and emotions. His member remained buried inside of her as it pulsed in time with her own contracting walls. Eric took into account several things in that moment. The rhythm of her heartbeat, the shortness of her breath, the fact that it had been over a solid minute, and they were both still experiencing post-orgasm contractions.
“Are you all right, Sookie?” Eric asked gently when her heartbeat had yet to calm after nearly five minutes. He slipped out of her, feeling her flinch.
“S-sorry,” she gasped, “I’m just having trouble… Calming back down.”
“Mmm,” Eric snuggled her tighter to his body, “you were highly aroused for quite a while, Lover. I believe that is the longest you have kept up with me.”
Sookie groaned. “How long were we doing it?”
The vampire glanced at the clock, “It is nearly a quarter to two. We arrived home at midnight.”
“We’ve been screwing around for two hours?” she asked in alarm.
“About…” He went back to playing with her hair once her heart had finally slowed down to a reasonable pace. After her heart and lungs seemed to have calmed for an extended period of time, Eric reached his hand between her legs, and Sookie immediately clamped her thighs around his hand with a hiss. “Raw?”
“Yes,” she snapped irritably.
“I will fix that,” he promised, bringing his hand to his mouth and slicing his finger open to draw out a fair amount of blood. When Sookie’s eyes widened hopefully, he shook his head with a smirk. “It is not going in the hole you would prefer.”
Sookie frowned when he brought his bleeding digit back between her legs and began coating her inflamed entrance with deep red fluid. The tiny sound of relief that accompanied the healing properties of his blood was instantaneous.
“Humans don’t have to drink vampire blood to heal?” she asked, eyes shutting as her discomfort abated.
“Not always. It depends on the injury. Skin irritation, lacerations… If the surface tension of the skin is compromised, our blood can be administered topically. However, pores are not suitable passages for sub-dermal injuries. That is why you would need to drink my blood to heal the bruises from your bullet injuries although, the more severe the injury, the less effective a topical treatment can be. If you were shot or stabbed, it would be more prudent for you to drink my blood rather than my bleeding directly into the wound.”
Eric shrugged. “Vampires’ magic is greatly tied in to blood drinking. Though our blood’s magic is still mildly effective in other mediums, it will never be as potent as when it is consumed.”
“I do not know. Perhaps it has to do with how vampires Bond. If there were a human we would offer our blood to thrice to keep alive, surely we would want to keep them forever. It is no simple matter when a vampire gifts a human with their blood. It is quite frowned upon to give a human our blood indiscriminately.”
“Really? It seems like unless a mutual exchange is possible, you’ve been trying to force feed me your blood.”
Eric grinned down at her unashamed. “That is because I want you healthy and happy. I have made my choice in you, Sookie. Now all I have to do is wait and see if you make the same choice in me.”
“I did,” she sighed in feigned dismay. “You turned me down.”
Eric rolled his eyes at her counterfeit distress. “There are enough things happening in your life right now without making life-altering commitments.” He pressed his forehead to hers and asked gently, “Have you even considered the fact that you will never be able to have children if you stay with me?”
“No, but then I’ve never thought about having kids.”
“Ever?” he asked in surprise.
“Not really, and then every time I have a case involving a dead child, or hear another department working a child abuse case, all I can ever think is, ‘Thank God I don’t want children’.” She played with the fingers of his hand that was not currently buried in her hair. “When I told Gran about this, she kind of rolled her eyes and thought that if everyone thought like me, the population would be at zero in no time. Besides, what kid would want a mom who could hear their thoughts? They’d turn into a teenager and hate my guts, AND I’d be a cop. They wouldn’t trust me for anything.”
“Oh, Lover, and you were doing so well up until now, so confident, sexy, and brimming with self-esteem. Now I must resort back to telling you how perfect you are to me,” Eric kissed her mouth soothingly.
“Eric, I’m not emotionally flagellating myself. I’m just telling you why I’ve never wanted kids, and in this moment, I’m very grateful for that. No matter the fact that it was rooted in a very self-loathing part of my past, it still prepared me mentally for a future without children, a future where I could be happy with you, and not feel as if I was sacrificing something to accept and keep you.” She tangled her fingers with Eric’s as she murmured, “Maybe there are things about me that go against the norm. There’s a good chance that most of those things stem from very negative thoughts about myself… Still, I don’t feel that way anymore, but that doesn’t mean that all of the desires I’ve never felt before will suddenly break some sort of dam inside of me. I’m not going to yearn for children, Eric. I’ve never wanted them. I didn’t even want anything to do with baby dolls when I was a little girl.”
Eric laughed at that last part. “Too busy playing cops and robbers?” he teased.
Sookie grimaced jokingly. “Yeah, pretty much.”
“All right then, Sookie. I just wanted to make sure you thought about it.”
“Are you tired?” he asked quietly.
“Yes, but I still want to keep doing it,” she admitted after a moment’s consideration.
Eric chuckled, pulling her leg over his hip. “How about we continue gently,” he suggested, kissing the top of her head.
“Mmm,” she hummed agreeably when his hand came to touch between her folds.
“Does that feel all right?” he asked, making sure she had healed properly.
“Mmm hmm,” she hummed again with a nod, eyes drifting shut.
“Are you going to fall asleep before I even put it in?” he asked with a chuckle now.
“I don’t know, are you going to keep talking or start fucking?” Eric’s reply was to shift his hips and slip into her smoothly. The woman gasped at the languid sensation of him filling her. “Good answer!”
His body rocked sedately against hers, still playing with her hair and kissing the crown of her head. “We have never had sex this slowly before,” he commented. “Even your first time was not this gentle.”
“I like it,” she murmured, closing her eyes softly.
“So do I,” he agreed, finding her lips with his own and kissing her in time with the waltzing tempo of their bodies.
As the minutes passed, Eric found his body leaning over hers until he was once again above the lovely woman who shared his bed. Their hands were gentle caresses, fingers tangling in golden locks, lips dancing as though they touched delicate flower petals. Though her pulse scarcely rose, Sookie could feel her release building. It was different this time versus the multiple climaxes the Viking between her legs had given her. Instead of frenzy and electrical pulsations, her entire body coiled like a fiercely compressed spring. Only, instead of lunging when the weight lifted, Sookie’s muscles relaxed in a resonating thrum that began in her skin and seeped into her bones.
Relaxed, happy, at peace…
Sookie awoke with a long, luxurious stretch. Her joints felt like gelatin, and her muscles ached rather pleasantly. Even the dark bruises on her back felt compliantly painless.
Humming gently to herself, Sookie danced to the bathroom, preparing for the day. She quickly went through her morning routine and hopped into her car.
Tapping an impatient finger against the wheel, Sookie scanned the shops as she drove through downtown Shreveport. There was little conflict in her mind over what she wanted to do this afternoon.
Recently, Eric had mentioned that if she wanted to buy flattering dresses and other such feminine things, he would find places to take her to wear them. Today, she had every intention of not only buying clothing she had yearned for an excuse to don, but also an article of clothing that would give her vampire lover a run for his money in finding an event where she could wear it… A formal gown.
Deep down, Sookie had always longed for an opportunity to purchase a dress with a skirt running to the floor. However, such circumstances were rare and far between, and the telepath had missed every chance during her adolescence and young adulthood. She had been overlooked as a prom date though she would have suffered through the evening just so she could have worn a floor length gown. She had never been asked to stand up or even attend a wedding. The only events remaining in her life where the opportunity could strike again were her own wedding (which she always scoffed at considering a possibility), and the Shreveport Police Charity Ball.
The latter event had been a great temptation for her, but the tickets were expensive even with reduced costs for those in law enforcement. There was the added awkwardness of spending the night with colleagues and politicians witnessing her in such feminine attire. Sookie had a difficult time believing she could enjoy the evening with her dress having her coworkers gawking in surprise and disbelief.
Of course, Sookie was aware that Eric could easily afford tickets to the fundraiser event, and would gladly do so if he believed she had a desire to attend. Regardless of that knowledge, Sookie still felt a deep aversion to being gaped at openly without her badge and gun strapped to her hip.
Finally spotting a promising shop, Sookie found a parking space nearby and began her hunt.
The first store she entered provided many snug girly tops and flowing skirts that stopped at her mid-thigh. In the next shop she stumbled upon, she found dresses that had similar cuts as her lone red and white dress. Finally, her most coveted stop, a bridal boutique, where she tried on several bridesmaid’s dresses.
Sookie spent the most time in the last store, trying on dress after dress and confusing the poor saleswomen until she managed to cease her search long enough to explain she needed a formal gown for a fundraiser event. With sales personnel on her side, the telepath finally found the dress that made her feel alluring and desirable. However, once she noticed the price tag, it took all of her years of keeping a straight face not to cringe and thrust it back on the rack.
“You wanted that cut in the black with blue trim, correct?” the redheaded saleswoman asked sweetly while Sookie continued to stare at the dress in disguised alarm.
“Er, yeah, I liked that color scheme much better, but you don’t have it in my size. You just have the black and gold. Also… Um… All the dresses I’ve tried on today at other stores were a size six, and this one’s an eight,” she shook the dress that had fit her properly.
“Oh, our dresses run a bit smaller,” the redhead explained skeptically as though she found it confusing that Sookie would not know this.
Why the hell do they standardize dress size numbers if y’all just put whatever number you feel like! Sookie thought with aggravation. “I see,” Sookie muttered instead.
“So, we will put an order in for that dress in black and blue for a size eight,” the redhead walked her through the process. “Let me just check the warehouse inventory to see how long it should be until it comes in. Are you going to need alterations?” she asked.
“Um,” Sookie fidgeted.
Charlotte, the redhead whom Sookie finally managed to read her name tag, smiled at Sookie with sudden understanding. “You’ve never bought a formal dress before, have you?”
“No,” Sookie replied meekly.
“Okay, why don’t you go put that one back on, come onto the viewing floor, and we’ll take a look at the fit?” Charlotte suggested.
“S-sure,” Sookie flushed a deep red and went back to the changing room. When she emerged once more, Charlotte looked the blonde over with a critical eye. “I… umm… guess it feels pretty good…”
“Hmm,” Charlotte hummed to herself. “What foundation were you thinking of wearing?”
“I don’t really know. I don’t wear make-up that often.”
Charlotte’s eyebrows raised, “Underwear, Sugar. What sort of foundation garments?”
“Oh!” Sookie blushed terribly. “I don’t really know. This dress is strapless and… I’ve never had luck with strapless bras, but I really like this dress.”
Grinning at Sookie’s confession, Charlotte told her, “Well, it looks great on you. It will look spectacular when it’s properly pinned!” At Sookie’s freshly puzzled look, Charlotte elaborated, “When we get the seamstress to fit it properly to your body. Can you sit in it?” Sookie looked around, spied a bench, and sat comfortably with a nod. Reaching forward, Charlotte folded the fabric tighter along Sookie’s abdomen, “You really only need an eight because of your breasts and hips. The waist line on this dress is far too wide for you. Therefore, we’ll take that in. It’s also rather long, so we’ll re-hem it. You were planning on open toe shoes, right?”
Sookie’s head was spinning when she got back to her feet. What was this foreign language Charlotte spoke so fluently?
“Well, with a slit that high, open toe is really the only way to go,” Charlotte commented distractedly. “Okay, turn around, let me see what sort of foundation we need.”
Sookie turned carefully as to not trip on the dress’s hem. When she heard the saleswoman gasp, the blonde groaned, remembering the purple and black blotches still healing on her back. She really needed to let Eric heal her. Hiding her face behind her hair was easy enough, but Sookie was so unaccustomed to wearing open-back clothes that she often forgot how badly the bruises appeared.
“I’m a police officer,” Sookie said quickly. “I was shot last week. Don’t worry.”
Charlotte nodded numbly before shakily returning to her contemplations over underwear. She left a moment to return with a low back bustier which she encouraged Sookie to change into. Flustered, Sookie confessed she had no idea how to put it on, and Charlotte went into the changing room with her to help. Once the dress was back in place, Sookie fell in love with the gown all over again. Now that she was wearing proper support, her plentiful bosom was defying the notion of gravity. She looked dangerously sexy.
“That certainly makes all the difference,” Charlotte laughed amusedly at Sookie’s stunned expression. “I’m betting your date for this fundraiser will have the same look you do when he sees you in this dress.”
“We might not make it out the door,” Sookie muttered more to herself, but Charlotte laughed.
“Well, I think you made the best possible choice for a dress. Are you ready to put the order in?” the saleswoman asked kindly.
“Yeah… I guess I’ll take this weird bra thing too while I’m at it.”
“All right, you get changed back into your clothes, and I’ll start processing your order. Would you like me to schedule an alteration appointment too?”
“Uh, yeah, I guess,” Sookie replied, still staring at her image in the mirror.
“I’ll do that. Take your time coming to the desk,” she encouraged.
Nodding, but not really hearing, Sookie turned several times, examining herself in the array of mirrors. Reaching up, she pulled her remaining hair free of its pony tail, watching the long strands cascade down her back. Though her hair distracted from the open back of the dress when it was down, Sookie wanted it that way. Her hair was always up, and she wanted it to be free for her first experience wearing such a lovely gown.
Smiling to herself, Sookie resisted the urge to skip back into the changing room and put her street clothes back on. She grinned to herself the entire way to the service counter, and even the price of the dress with the foundation garment and alteration fee did not deter her.
Eric better think of something for me to wear this to! she thought with excitement and apprehension.
“Your dress will be here two weeks from now. We will send you a reminder e-mail when it arrives. Bring that bustier with you as well as the shoes you plan on wearing when you come to pick it up, and then we’ll go ahead and do the alterations, ” Charlotte explained.
“How long does that usually take?” Sookie asked.
“Less than an hour, usually.”
“Okay, thank you,” Sookie waved as she went to the door.
Returning to her car, Sookie drove back to Eric’s house and spent the remainder of the afternoon running her purchases through the washing machine. After everything was dry and hung up in Eric’s closet, she picked out her favorite skirt and blouse combination, and changed into them. Next, she grabbed her toiletry bag, found her mascara, and lip gloss to apply a meager amount on her face.
“There,” she said to herself, smacking her lips in the mirror, “easy enough.”
“What is easy?” Eric’s voice startled her, and her hand clutched at her heart at the suddenness of his consciousness. Turning her back to the bathroom counter, Sookie faced the door as Eric passed it. The vampire froze when he saw her, and a large smile split his face. “You look very lovely,” he said, closing the distance between them and wrapping his arms around her waist.
Sookie beamed up at him. “Thanks… You said if I bought things I liked that weren’t work functional, you would find something for us to do where they would be appropriate.”
“I did,” he agreed.
“Sooo,” she looked up at him coyly, “what would you do with a girl wearing this?” She gestured to her new outfit.
“I cannot say for certain what I would do with a girl wearing this, but I can tell you what I want to do to you wearing this.”
“What?” Sookie breathed.
“I want to push that sexy short skirt the rest of the way up your legs, bend you over something, and fuck you into a coma,” he told her point blank.
Pulling her bottom lip between her teeth, Sookie reached up and wrapped her arms about his neck. “Yes, please?”
“I thought the point of this exercise was for you to buy garments to wear when I take you out?” Eric asked before succumbing to her seeking lips and kissing her deeply.
Directing his mouth over her neck, Sookie asked, “Why would we go out when you can stay in?” Her own inquiry inspired a growling groan from her lover. “Besides, it’s not true dark yet. I can always change into something else for you to take me out.” When he gave her throat a blunt warning bite, she giggled. “That bending over comment? Darlin’, you can’t put images in a girl’s head like that, and then do nothing about it!”
“Oh, I will do something about it, Lover.” He nuzzled his nose beneath her ear, his hands stroking her sides teasingly. “I am just not going to do it right now.”
Sookie pulled away slightly to pout at him, “Why not?”
The vampire smirked at her with taunting amusement. “Because every time I touch you tonight, all you will be able to think about is when and where I am going to bend you over… A pool table? I could push your top up and let those sensitive little nipples scrape against the baize while I am fucking you. Maybe a pub stool? That way your hands could wrap around the crossbar when I make you scream.”
“Eric,” she moaned. Visualizing his x-rated plans caused the woman to instinctively press her thighs together tightly. Her body leaned against his in response to her flaring arousal, and he could smell it rolling off of her in waves.
“You seem to enjoy being teased,” he commented, reaching beneath her skirt to force apart her thighs and test her level of excitement. When his fingertips easily slid across her flesh, he murmured approvingly. “Oh, yes. Anticipation agrees with you. What if I asked you to leave these wet panties with me? They are already so damp, they cannot possibly be comfortable..?” A fresh coating of dew slickened his digits and Eric grinned, grasping for the elastic. “I am taking them, Sookie.”
Her response was to nibble her bottom lip again and marginally widen her stance to make the action easier. She felt the fabric of her panties drag across her bottom, and her hand raised to her lips to bite the knuckle of her bent index finger. Shyly, she stepped one leg out of her underwear, and then the other; watching intently as Eric fisted them in his hand and stood back up to his full height.
“Now,” Eric told her, “all you have to do is wait. Does that sound fun, Sookie?” When she nodded hesitantly, her lover leaned in and whispered in her ear. “All you have to do is ask for them back,” he assured. “It is only a game as long as you are having fun, right?” She nodded with far much more certainty. “Are you having fun, Lover?”
“Yes, Darlin’, I am,” she assuaged his own concern.
“Have I told you how much I enjoy you calling me that?” he asked, kissing her nose. “I believe it is the most endearing pet name I have ever had, and one of few I have been agreeable toward.”
“Other women have given you pet names?” Sookie asked disappointedly.
Eric rolled his eyes. “They have tried, but I rejected the attempts. Do you know how irritating it is to have a woman a thousand years younger than myself calling me ‘Baby’?”
“No, I really can’t imagine. At least it’s not as intimate as being called ‘Lover’,” Sookie replied.
“Do you dislike it?”
“No,” she mumbled. “It kind of embarrasses me when you use it where others can hear though.”
“Why is that?” he asked.
“Well,” Sookie began slowly, “it feels… Unseemly.”
“Like you’re letting people know too much about our relationship when it’s none of their business,” she explained reluctantly.
“You feel that my endearment is too provocative for public?” he clarified. Sookie nodded. “How does my affectionate name make you feel when it is just you and I?”
Sookie smiled goofily. “It makes me feel cherished.”
“I am glad. That was my goal all along.”
“Everything you do makes me feel that way,” she told him. “I don’t know how you snuck your way into my heart. It was so seamless. So effortless. You’re like a ghost that just passed through all of my walls like they aren’t even there.”
“I think,” Eric began as he pushed a lock of hair from her face and stroked her cheek with his thumb, “that was because you wanted to let someone in. As hard as you pushed everyone away, there was always a sliver of hope in you that you could eventually let another share your life.” He leaned his forehead against the top of her crown. “Very few people genuinely invite absolute solitude. You isolated yourself so completely that it was only a matter of time that your yearning got the better of you.”
Sookie laughed. “You just happened to be in the right place at the right time?”
“I did not happen to be anywhere. I blatantly planted myself directly in your path.”
“As I said, I have been keeping tabs on your career. In that time, there were a few things that I came to realize about your personality along the way. I made certain not to push against your barriers when we finally met. I stopped at all of the lines you drew in the sand until you drew newer, closer lines. It was a rather remarkable show of patience on my part. I am unaccustomed to letting others write the rules…” He stopped for a moment, contemplating her face. “Yet I knew you were worth that patience and letting go of some of my control.”
“It didn’t seem so tedious to me,” Sookie whispered. “It felt… Sudden and… Frightening… Not you, of course, but how you made me feel. I couldn’t understand what the hell was so special about you that all of my walls couldn’t keep you out.” She shook her head with wry amusement. “It’s still scary, you know? Feeling all of these crazy things that I never knew I could feel… It’s a good scary, like, roller coasters or bungee jumping.”
“You have gone bungee jumping?” Eric asked mirthfully.
“Well, no, but it’s the same principle I think. I’ve never been on a roller coaster either,” she admitted sheepishly.
“Really? Perhaps on an evening you decide to wear pants, I will take you to an amusement park,” he suggested.
Sookie made a face, “No thanks.”
“Afraid? I thought you said roller coasters were a ‘good scary’?” he teased.
“Maybe for other people, but not me. I have no interest in entrusting my body to a seventeen-year-old who’d much rather text his friends on his phone than perform safety checks,” she seethed.
Eric threw his head back and laughed at her observation. “Your need to control things has nothing to do with your fear of roller coasters then?”
Sookie pouted. “I’m not a control freak…and I never said I was afraid of roller coasters. I just don’t like them,” she insisted.
“Pardon me, I meant your desire to have things just so,” Eric distracted Sookie from a potential argument by playing with the hem of her skirt. He felt her body tense as his hand moved the material, and her response made him smile softly. “What else did you buy today? Anything else as lovely and sexy as this?”
“Want to see?” she asked excitedly. “I hung everything up in your closet… That’s okay, right?”
“That is fine,” he assured with a nod. “Show me what you bought.”
Sookie took his hand and dragged him to the closet, opening it, and grabbing handfuls of hangers to toss onto his bed.
“You were rather busy today,” he commented with a chuckle as he looked over her purchases. “These are rather nice quality. You have the money for all of this?”
The woman frowned at his question. “Of course I do. I don’t go spending what I can’t afford.”
Eric held his hands up in feigned retraction. “I was only concerned. Sometimes… People have a habit to overindulge when they are unaccustomed to spending money on themselves.”
Sookie narrowed her eyes in playful accusation. “By people do you mean women?”
“It might have been my first choice,” he confessed with a smirk.
“Well, this isn’t all that I bought,” she made her own confession.
“What else did you buy?” Eric asked. Sookie played with her hair shyly. “That makes me even more curious, Lover,” he told her in a husky rasp.
“It’s nothing sexy… Well, it is, but not lingerie sexy. OH! I didn’t even think to shop for sexy underwear!” Her eyes widened at the realization.
“Then what is this sexy non-lingerie that you bought?”
Nibbling her lip with embarrassment, she told him, “It’s a challenge for you.”
“I bought a super formal dress, and I want you to find something to take me to so I can wear it.”
“Oh?” Her bashfulness confused him.
“I never… Y’know… Got to do the prom thing or go to a wedding… I’ve never had a formal dress before,” she explained self-consciously. When he did not respond right away, she began to backpedal, “I know, it’s stupid and adolescent. I’m sure I can stop the order! I’ll call the-”
“Sookie,” Eric silenced her with a finger over her lips, “if that is what you want, then I am more than capable of taking you somewhere to wear your super formal dress.” He paused briefly before saying, “The sun has set now. Shall we go to dinner, and we can discuss a few options?”
“Options?” Sookie asked.
Eric nodded, “I would hate to take you somewhere that would leave you in any self doubt. I just want to discuss activities you would be for or against.”
“Oh, okay,” she beamed up at him.
“All right, grab some shoes, and I will take you to dinner.”
Sookie nodded and went to the closet while Eric finished dressing. She groaned internally when she realized that she only had her running shoes and her usual work boots. The thought of shoe shopping had never crossed her mind.
“Is something wrong?” Eric asked when Sookie had yet to emerge from the closet.
“Uh, no!” she called, pulling her calf high boots on and lacing them tightly.
When she peeked around the closet door, she let out a sigh of resignation and stepped into Eric’s full view.
His smirk said it all, but that did not keep him from commenting, “You did not buy any new shoes.”