Sighing I kissed Eric’s chest before sitting up and started to make my way out of bed.
“Sookie,” Eric questioned, quickly sitting and grabbing my arm before I got too far.
Instead of responding I sat down on the edge of the bed and kept quiet. I didn’t want to make this night or any night harder for Eric, so I planned to keep my feelings to myself. I knew I couldn’t actually keep him from feeling me, but I was hoping he’d let my mood for the last few days slide.
“Each night you’ve becoming increasingly upset. I wanted to wait until you came and talked to me, but my strategy doesn’t seem to be working. I don’t want to pressure you, Sookie but…,” he quietly left off from behind me.
When I continued to say nothing and stare at the floor, I felt the bed spring up as Eric’s weight left it. It was only a matter of seconds before his long, bare feet were taking up the space that I had been looking at.
“I don’t understand,” I heard Eric say with confusion and hurt lacing his words from above me before he kneeled down in front of me. Taking my chin in between his thumb and index finger, he gently raised my chin until our eyes met. Watching as his worried eyes sought for the answers, I didn’t want to give and feeling how much I was hurting him, my eyes quickly filled with tears and spilled down my cheeks. Before my vision became blurred, I witnessed Eric’s eyes rim red. “Have I…”
“No,” I sobbed out as I threw myself off the bed and into Eric’s chest. Burying my face against his neck, I continued to cry as I felt Eric’s emotions continue to spiral along with my own. This seemed to be the one downside to our bond that I had experienced. The more I felt Eric getting upset, the more I got upset, and the more I got upset and cried, he got upset.
Holding me against his chest with one hand on my back and the other on my head, Eric hummed and rocked me as he sat on the floor. After a few minutes of our rioting emotions, I felt all of Eric’s negative emotions slowly slip away as he pushed his love for me and what I could only describe as him trying to let me know that I could safely explain without him bombarding me with his own emotions.
I knew our time was almost up for the night, and I needed to explain why I had been upset lately and why it had escalated into something tonight that it shouldn’t have. I had only wanted to spare him my feelings and instead I had got upset in epic proportion. Just thinking about how I had made him feel brought tears to my eyes once again.
“No more, please,” he gruffly whispered. “I…”
“No more,” I interrupted. I tried to stand only for Eric’s arms to tighten around me. Leaning my head back, we looked at each other quietly for a few moments before either one of us spoke.
“I can’t fix whatever’s upsetting you if you don’t tell me,” Eric softly spoke, but his eyes begged for me to tell him why I had not talked to him.
“You can’t fix this, Eric,” I whispered averting my eyes to look at anything but him.
“I can try,” he implored. “I will always do everything within my ability to make you happy.” Looking away, his Adam’s apple bobbed a few times before he looked back at me. “Even if you being happy means you no longer want to be with me.”
“NO! That’s not what this is at all, Eric! Can’t you feel that I love you? You are my world. Maybe too much,” I murmured the last.
“What do you mean too much? You are my whole world. You are my life, my heart, my soul. My everything. You have been since the moment you stepped into my life,” he responded with no small amount of hurt in his voice.
“Eric,” I whispered as tears filled my eyes. “I didn’t want to say anything because what I’m feeling is out of your control. And mine.” Eric started to open his mouth, but I quietly and effectively shushed him with a soft kiss. “We’ve been here for two weeks. Two very long weeks were I only see you for an hour when you wake up. Once the sun sets you leave and only come back with a few minutes left until dawn. I don’t ask to spend time with you then because I know that if you do stay up past dawn, then that’s time I might lose at night.
“While you’re gone, I try to engage myself with Charlie, Mason, and Quinn, but it doesn’t take long for me to start worrying and missing you. I understand why you are gone and what you have to do, but I didn’t think it would take this long or that I’d hardly see you. I feel selfish that I want you all to myself. I can only remember spending almost every waking hour of the night with you or at least in the same building. I’m thinking it might be unhealthy how much I want to be with you. Maybe you are too much of my world if I can barely function without you near me,” I explained.
“That’s not possible,” he smirked, but then turned serious. “I understand that we have been here much longer than any one of us expected. We have one chance to take down Marcus, and every aspect must be perfect before we strike. I know that you miss and worry about me, and I hate that. I hate the whole situation. You shouldn’t have to be stuck inside day and night like a prisoner, but I can’t risk anything happening to you. We are in a very dangerous situation that we are all trying to figure a way out of with no casualties lost along they way.”
“I know, and I understand,” I stated before resting my forehead against his. “I’m sorry for tonight. I didn’t mean for my emotions to get the best of me. I’ll try to do better and think of the long run.”
“Perhaps we can come up with a different solution that will appease the both of us. What do you think, dear one?”
“What do you have in mind?” I questioned.
“You can come with me tonight to where Pam, Godric, Hauk, and Thalia are staying. We’ll leave Quinn here since Thortin will also be there. This will give Thalia a chance to feed well before we go to take Marcus down,” he replied, looking up at me with his soulful eyes shining brightly.
“I’m sure Thalia will be happy to get away from babysitting duty. All she does is stare at me with a scowl on her face until I excuse myself and go to bed. Have you ever seen her smile or anything close to it?” I asked in a whisper, almost as if she’d know I was talking about her and rush over to strangle me the second the sun went down.
“Close,” Eric stated, his eyes turning fierce as his emotions went from calm to exhilarated and headed toward what I felt from him the night the Were’s had surrounded Godric’s. “I can only to pray to my Gods that you never see her smile.”
“Why?” I asked alarmed.
“If you see Thalia smile, it will be after a very satisfying battle and in the throws of bloodlust, and you know how dangerous a vampire can be during bloodlust.”
Wrapping my arms around his neck a little tighter I kissed his forehead thinking about the delightful way Eric took me after he had fought and killed many of those Weres.
Tilting his head to get a better look at me, Eric gave me a fangy grin before peppering kisses up and down my neck. “We don’t have time for whatever you’re thinking about. Especially if you want to come with me tonight, Lover, but I will make sure we get back here with enough time so that I can ravage your body and leave you sated.”
“I want to come with you even though I know everyone will be busy. At least, I’ll be able to be in the same room with you. I will be able to stay in the room, right?”
“Of course, you will, dear one. How else would I be able to keep my eye on you?” he replied before swooping in and placing a toe curling, panty melting kiss on me that left me breathless.
Little did I know that once I was in the room, all the vampires would start to speak a language I’d never heard before. Well, it’s possible I’d heard it before but not since my accident. At first, I even tried to listen to their thoughts, but they weren’t even thinking in English. I knew for a fact that until that night whenever I had taken a peek into Pam’s head she was always thinking in English even when she and Eric were speaking in another language. I had a sneaking suspicion that Eric had commanded her to think and speak in whatever the hell language they were all speaking. Obviously, I should have been using my time away from Eric in a more productive manner like learning a new language or three.
Maybe I could get Thalia to teach me so we wouldn’t just be sitting across from one another staring and bored out of our minds. I don’t think Thalia was bored; I think she went into downtime, but I’d been warned that Thalia was not the warm and fuzzy type, so I took no offense to her quiet scowl. I knew she’d never hurt me.
I’d been sitting in a chair off in the corner of the room with my feet tucked up underneath me reading a book that I’d found sitting on the table. If I hadn’t found that book, I would have been staring at Eric and the rest of the vampires in the room wishing that I could go into downtime. I should have known that I’d be just as bored here as I had been at our safe house. The only good thing about Eric bringing me along was that I knew everyone was safe, and I could sneak a peek at him whenever I felt like it. With Eric so honed into my emotions, he knew when I was looking and would give me a wink or a secret smile to let me know he was thinking about me too.
When my stomach made an unexpected growling noise that could contend with the likes of Charlie or Quinn all eyes were on me. My eyes met with Eric’s briefly before I felt my blush heat my ears.
“Why don’t we take a break to feed so that Eric can take care of his human,” Thortin said distastefully. “We’ll reconvene in an hour. Will that be long enough?” He said with his eyes narrowed at Eric.
I could feel Eric’s ire rising, but one look at Godric shaking his head. Eric gave him a curt nod before sweeping us both out of the room and into the night’s sky.
Neither of us said a word as Eric flew us through the humid night. Instead of trying to discern his emotions, I gazed over his shoulder at the dark sky that was riddled with twinkling stars and enjoyed this small amount of time we could be together and in his arms. He didn’t fly for long. Maybe ten minutes before he landed and placed me on my feet. We were in a parking lot of a fast food joint. There weren’t many options this late at night, and I knew there wasn’t time to order or eat at a restaurant.
I didn’t want to anger Thortin anymore then I already had, and I knew that if he narrowed his eyes or spoke to Eric in any manner other then with complete respect, Eric would very likely end him since his anger was still making itself known through the bond.
“Will you be able to find yourself something to eat that you like here?” Eric asked as he ushered me inside.
“Yes, I think so. One thing I’ve learned about these silly fast food restaurants is that they love to discontinue making whatever people seem to love,” I said shaking my head. “It makes no sense to me. You’d think that if an item or dish were popular, that would be the one thing they’d always keep around, but I’ve noticed they like to take what I like and then add a bunch of unappetizing items to the menu,” I explained as I made my way to the counter.
Eric was quiet and looked at his shoes as I ordered and waited for my meal. I kept quiet waiting to see if he’d calm down before we went back to the other safehouse. I wasn’t sure if it was possible going by the napkin holder Eric had smashed between his hands making it a pile of junk the fast food restaurant could no longer use.
“Do you often eat fast food with Charlie?” Eric asked, breaking the silence.
“Sometimes,” I answered shrugging. Looking up, I saw Eric inspecting my food with about as much disdain as Thortin had used to speak to him earlier. “Sometimes,” I continued. “I find something I like a lot and get a craving for it. Charlie indulges me and will keep taking me to eat it until I’m tired of it. This,” I said, pointing at my burger and fries, “is my latest craving.”
“I can tell you are enjoying it immensely by all the little noises you’re making as you eat, but surely it can’t be healthy for you.”
“I don’t eat it often. Does it bother you?” I asked quietly as I watched him set down the scrunched up napkin holder.
“Does what bother me?” he asked giving me his full attention.
“Does what I eat affect the way I taste to you? Although I don’t eat fast food a lot, I thought that since I couldn’t age or get sick, food wouldn’t affect my health.” Had I misunderstood when he explained we are bound together?
“No, you cannot get sick nor can food affect your health. If there were a possibility that one day you’d get cancer or some rare disease, then we would still have the plan for me to turn you when you reached thirty. As for what you eat and the way your blood tastes, no food doesn’t seem to affect it in any way,” Eric replied.
“Does what normal people eat make their blood taste different?” I asked curiously.
“Yes, to some extent it does, but you being a hybrid seems to cancel out that effect. Luckily you’re just for me,” he answered. Once he was finished, he waggled his eyebrows at me causing me to giggle.
Pointing to the ruined napkin holder, I asked, “What was that all about?”
“Thortin,” he answered with a snap.
When I realized he wasn’t going to say anymore, I sent him my curiosity as I finished eating.
“He doesn’t care much for humans, and I didn’t appreciate the snide looks and comments he was making,” he said with a growl.
“It wasn’t that bad.”
“You didn’t see the looks he was shooting in your direction when you weren’t looking nor did you understand the things he was saying for most of the night,” Eric responded, the anger evident in his voice.
“Yes, I didn’t understand what was said for most of the night. Everyone was speaking in a language I don’t know,” I said giving him a pointed look. “Who could have possibly given them the idea not to speak English? On all the nights that you’ve met have you been speaking something other than English?”
Shaking his head no, Eric sat on his side of the booth with perfect posture and a blank face as he continued to watch me. I could feel that he felt he had done the right thing, and he wasn’t going to back down. I understood, but it seemed that their planning didn’t only include strategizing. Not that there was anything I could do about the comments Thortin had made about me, but I knew I wouldn’t be going back there after tonight so that meant that I’d be back at our safe house without Eric again. I also now understood why Eric had gotten so mad at the comments I did understand.
“We should probably head back. I don’t want to cause any more trouble tonight,” I said as I took my last bite.
“Sookie,” Eric whispered as he stretched his arm out across the table and took my hand in his. “You are never any trouble. I don’t want you to think that way about yourself. Ever.”
“I think if I asked anyone that was in that room tonight besides you, they’d say I’m at inconvenience that none of you need right now. I don’t want to cause any problems between you and Thortin.”
“You. Are. Not. An. Inconvenience,” Eric stated fiercely. “Only Thortin would say you are an inconvenience, and that’s because he believes vampires are the most superior of all species. Everyone else in that room is your friend. You have shown them all kindness that they’ve never experienced from another human. You want nothing from them but friendship, and you’ve gained that and their loyalty. Don’t waste your time worrying about Thortin, my sweet Sookie.”
Eric had us quickly out of our booth and the fast food restaurant and in the air before he crushed his mouth to mine. His fingers tangled in my hair as I felt our bodies rise and his tongue caress against mine. My own hands found purchase wrapped around his shoulders and let Eric make me forget about everything in the world but him. I think if the world was ending and Eric was kissing me I would be happy in his arms oblivious to anything and everything.
Unfortunately, Eric couldn’t kiss me all night or do more. He needed to get back, and I needed to act as if I was fine with Thortin being a jackass. It didn’t take long for us to get back to the other safe house and for their strategizing to commence. It also didn’t take long for their hushed words in another language to escalate into growls. One minute they were all huddled around a table with multiple blueprints spread out and the next Godric was in between a snarling Thortin and a very growly Eric.
Whatever Thortin was saying, I could tell it was not good. He kept glaring at Eric as he spit out words that became louder and louder. Even though I knew that Godric was much older than Eric, it looked as if he was having a hard time keeping Eric from attacking.
I knew things were escalating when Thalia came to crouch in front of me with her fangs down. I watched as Godric spoke in a calm, quiet voice first to Thortin and then to Eric. Godric continued to speak quietly as he de-escalated the situation and Thortin finally took a step back. Eric said one final sentence before he strode across the room to me, gave a deep nod in Thalia’s direction, and then took my hand as we walked out of the room and then out the front door.
I wanted to ask questions because of course the entire fight or whatever the hell that had been back there was completely in another language, but I kept quiet. The more we flew toward our safe house with the wind in our hair the more Eric calmed down. By the time we made it to our bedroom, Eric was no longer angry. He was something altogether better as he turned on the water in the luxurious bathtub and then slipped off first my clothes and then his own. I’d much rather tangle my body with Eric’s in our giant tub then to know what Thortin had been saying about me.