Everyone stood motionless as they watched Bill’s body turn to sludge. Sookie dropped the stake that she had used and covered her mouth with her bloody hands as she stared at her one-time lover, her first boyfriend and first love until Jessica started to shriek. Before she knew what was happening, Eric had Jessica pinned against the door with his hand at her neck.
“Let me go,” Jessica hissed as she fought Eric‘s hold. “Let. Me. Go. She. Killed. My. Maker. I’m. Going. To. Kill. Her.”
Sookie stepped back a step with each of Jessica‘s pointed words until she was off the porch and standing in the wet grass in shock at Jessica’s words. How could Jessica react that way? They all knew Bill wasn’t himself anymore. Eric had explained what they had seen in that room where Bill reduced Sookie’s insides to nothing with his words. Each one cut deeper and deeper until she felt like a shell of herself as she watched him drink the blood in the vile.
Sookie didn’t know who Lilith was and she didn’t care. All she knew was that this Lilith had made Bill and likely many other vampires crazy.
After Eric explained that they saw Bill rise up from a pile of blood and hell bent on killing them the car had remained quiet. No one spoke or moved except for Eric’s thumb on the back of Sookie’s hand as he drove.
“You will not lay one finger on her or I will end you,” Eric said in a deadly calm voice. One that you knew to be afraid of by instinct.
Jessica stopped fighting against his hold for a moment until her eyes landed back on Sookie. Letting out a growl, she started fighting again. Trying and failing to make any headway. Eric’s fangs elongated even more and let out his own growl causing Sookie, Nora, and especially Jessica to go still. Or more still. No one had moved throughout the whole altercation. You don’t piss off a thousand-year-old vampire unless you had a death wish.
“Last chance,” Eric snarled out, tightening his grip around Jessica’s neck almost to the point of snapping it.
Barely able to move, Jessica nodded her head as best as she could.
Eric decided that Jessica wasn’t that stupid to heed his warning and threw her off the porch in the direction of Nora. With a chin lift to his sister, Eric walked slowly toward Sookie and didn’t stop until he was only a few inches away. Without a word, he bent his elbow out. Sookie only hesitated a moment before curling her hand around his arm and they started walking to her farmhouse.
For a few minutes, they were both quiet, but Eric couldn’t hold back any longer.
“You staked him for me,” he said quietly in wonder.
Sookie only nodded her head but turned to look up at him.
“I never thought I’d see the day that you’d choose me over Bill,” he said just as quietly as he did the first time.
“I had no other choice,” Sookie responded, bringing up her hand to cup Eric’s cheek. To her surprise, Eric leaned against her hand. Taking comfort in her touch. “I can’t imagine a world without you in it,” she whispered.
Eric’s eyes flashed with untold emotion before he dipped his head and captured her lips with his cool, soft mouth.
“Eric,” Sookie gasped when they finally broke apart, her fingers still tangled in his hair.
“Don’t tell me you didn’t want that. Don’t tell me you don’t want more.”
Shaking her head, Sookie smiled up at him. Lifting up on her tippy toes, she brushed her lips across his. “Take me home,” she said quietly, glancing down at his lips and then back to his eyes.
Eric started walking, he didn’t want Sookie to change her mind and if going by the past he knew that was a possibility. A good possibility.
Once they made it to her door, Sookie pulled her key from her jean’s pocket and unlocked the door. “Won’t you please come in, Mr. Northman,” she called with a flirty voice.
Eric stood still wondering if this would be their final night together or something more. Anyone else and he wouldn’t give a damn, but this was Sookie and just the thought of having her that night to then be pushed away nearly crushed him where he stood.
“Eric?” Sookie questioned uneasily. “Are you okay?”
“Sookie, why’d you stake Bill tonight?”
“I told you. I can’t imagine a world without you in it. Now please come inside,” she said, biting her bottom lip in worry.
“I can’t imagine a world without you in it either, but I know you love Bill. Why kill him to save me?” Eric asked, his voice hoarse.
“I don’t think I’d be able to go on if you met the true death,” she replied tearing up.
“Why?” Eric asked his one word clogged with emotion.
“I love you,” Sookie answered immediately. She watched as Eric’s eyes softened. “Now are you going to come in or what.”
Eric didn’t waste another second. He had his Sookie in his arms and upstairs in her bedroom in her next heartbeat. In the next they were both naked with Eric engulfing her body with his. The next he was inside of her. It was fast, it was hard, it was Eric claiming the woman he had wanted since the moment she stepped into his bar. It was Sookie letting go of her fears that she wasn’t good enough and eventually he’d break her heart. It was beautiful. It was best. It was right.
Sookie was snuggled up against Eric’s side. Her head on his shoulder as she drew patterns on his chest while Eric’s hand lazily roamed up and down her back.
It was getting close to dawn and Eric would have to leave her bedroom. He wanted to take Sookie down to his cubby with him, but they had yet to talk. He had made love to her the rest of the night after he claimed her. What he didn’t know is if Sookie knew he was claiming her. He should have talked to her, but he was afraid he’d burst the bubble they were in and had kept quiet. He wanted every second he could get with her, but his time was up, now he had to break their silence. Just as he was beginning to open his mouth Sookie spoke.
“It’s almost dawn we need to get down to your cubby,” she said lifting up to look down at him.
His lips tugged up at the corners and continued until his cheeks would have hurt if he were not a vampire. Scooping Sookie into his arms, he quickly brought them down to the cubby and lightly placed her on the small bed. Settling in behind her, Eric then pulled her body back against his and then pulled the blanket up to her shoulders.
Sookie snuggled into his hold, brought his hand up and placed a kiss on his fingers.
With only moments until dawn, Eric said the words he’d been holding back all night.
“I love you too, and I’m never letting you go again.”