I slowly opened up my eyes while stretching my body. My muscles feel so sore and stiff, almost as if I hadn’t moved in days. I turned over to my left side and screamed when I saw a man. But not just any man but a drop-dead gorgeous man, laying on his side facing me. He had blond hair that was slightly disheveled and I couldn’t tell what color his eyes were since they were closed, but he had long, thick, blond eyelashes that trailed down to his cheekbones. His alabaster skin looked smooth and firm, but I ignored my desire, no, my need to touch him. The beautiful sleeping stranger next to me. My eyes wandered from his chiseled face down to his broad shoulders, and my inquisitive gaze trailed down to take in the rest of him. I noticed that he was wearing a black tank top. He looked tall, so tall that his feet ended at the edge of the bed.
How did I end up in bed with this man? I looked around and nothing seemed familiar. When I tried to think back to the last thing I remembered I came up blank.
What happened to me? Why can’t I remember anything? Where am I? Who is this man sleeping next to me? Who am I?
The more I tried to remember the more frustrated and frantic I became. Think, think, think! What’s the last thing I remember?!
Nothing. Nothing came.
I was close to hysterics when I heard a noise coming from the man beside me. I turned back to look at him only to find his eyes still closed and him mumbling something I couldn’t understand. It didn’t sound like anything I’d ever heard before but what would I know. All I knew was I couldn’t understand him.
“Hello?” I called to him. When he didn’t respond I grabbed his hand but dropped it. It was cold. Too cold. Oh my god, what was wrong with him? Was he dying? Was that why he was in bed with me? Did something happen to the both of us?
I was close to crying when he spoke again.
“Sookie,” he said. It came out a little more than a whisper.
“Sookie? What’s Sookie?” I asked, leaning a little closer to him.
Blue-green eyes flashed open and startled me. His look was intense as he stared at my face. I felt a wave of sadness wash over me for a brief moment and then it was gone. It didn’t feel like it was coming from me though. I wasn’t sad. At least not yet. I was too busy freaking out about who I was, where I was, and who this man was.
“You’re Sookie,” he said as he lightly touched my cheek with his fingers.
I jerked away from his touch. Why was he so cold and why did I feel that sadness again?
“I’m Sookie?” I asked. I rolled the name off the tip of my tongue a few times, but it didn’t seem familiar.
“Yes,” he mumbled while his eyes fluttered close.
“Hey!” I yelled at him. His eyes struggled to open again. Once they were open I spoke, “Are you okay? What’s wrong with you? You’re cold and you don’t seem like you can stay awake. Should I call a doctor or someone?”
His eyebrows furrowed while he continued to look at me, “I’m fine,” he closed his eyes again but continued to talk. “I’ll be awake in… three hours. I’m sorry, Sookie. I can’t stay awake any longer.”
Fine? He certainly didn’t seem fine. He couldn’t stay awake to answer my questions and I had so many questions. How did he know he’d be awake in three hours? I cautiously pulled the blanket up to his chin hoping that it would help keep him warm. I didn’t want to disturb him in case he really was sick.
Is Sookie my name? He certainly made it seem like it was. I wondered what his name was. I tried to remember, but nothing came. Everything was still blank.
I laid back down and stared at the stranger in bed with me for what felt like hours. It wasn’t until my stomach started to growl that I realized that I was starving. When was the last time I ate?
Where was the kitchen? Where was I?
I made my way out of bed, looking around the room once again. There was hardly any furniture in the room. The bed was pretty much on the floor with a light surrounding it. I turned to look at the man laying in bed and his feet stretched out to the edge of the bed. Just how tall was he?
There was a little stool looking table on each side of the bed, behind the bed was some wooden looking boxes with faucets and the ground was made out of rocks. Underneath the windows were blue lights helping to light the room. It was hard to see what the rest of the room looked like with the only light coming from the bed and windows, but I didn’t want to find a light right now and wake the man in bed.
I walked to my left and it looked to be a bathroom and a huge closet. Neither of which I needed right now so I walked back toward the windows. There looked to be some sort of artwork taking up a large portion of the wall, but I couldn’t get a good look at it. Once by the windows, I saw a door to my left. I did think it was strange that I knew what everything around me was, but not who the man lying in bed was or who I was.
I finally found the door and walked up to it, only to find a keypad that lit up once I arrived. Well, I certainly didn’t know the code. Now, what was I going to do? After a few moments of standing there trying to figure out what I was going to do, I saw a note on the wall.
This is the code to get downstairs, please take it with you.
Without it, you will not be able to come back into the bedroom.
Why would I be staying at a place where I needed codes to get around? Was I in danger? Had something happened to me that was so bad that I now couldn’t remember anything?
Gathering my courage, I put in the code and the door made a hissing sound when it opened. I sure hope that was normal and I didn’t do anything to break it. Once I stepped through the door, I entered what looked like an office. It didn’t seem normal that you’d leave a bedroom and end up in an office but what did I know.
I stepped out of the office onto a landing with stairs going down. It led me to a living room with a big, white sectional with an aquarium above the couch, all in front of a huge TV built into a wall that looked like art with shelving and equipment down below.
The kitchen was spacious and modern just like the other rooms I’d seen. Red bricks adorned the walls and smooth, white concrete countertops wrapped around the room and the stainless steel appliances reflected the recessed lighting. It was all very clean with nothing out of place. There was a large, sturdy oak table with six chairs. With my stomach reminding me just how hungry I was, I opened the fridge to see what I could find to eat. I was pleasantly surprised to see it was was packed with food, but did I even know how to cook? Surely, I knew how to make myself something to eat, but nothing was coming to me once again.
It would be horrible if I tried to cook myself something and burned down the house in the process. I decided I wouldn’t risk it at least not right now. I grabbed a banana out of the bowl on the counter and a bottle of water out of the fridge.
I walked around the house trying to get myself acquainted with it. I didn’t know why, but for some reason I trusted the gorgeous man upstairs. It was obvious that he trusted me, seeing that he let me sleep in bed with him while he was obviously weak or vulnerable or whatever was wrong with him. Was that why I trusted him? No. It was this feeling deep in my chest… I could trust him. Besides if he wanted to hurt me, he already would have. If he was the one that made me like this, I don’t think he would have been sleeping in the same room with me.
I found three more bedrooms, a dining room, laundry room, and a reading area with a bed on the ground. It looked very comfortable and so inviting that I was almost tempted to pluck a book from one of the shelves and lay down on the bed. All of the doors that seemed to lead outside had a keypad by the door. I didn’t know if the code I had worked for those doors or not so, I didn’t try them. I didn’t want an alarm to go off or anything like that.
I did take a look outside and saw that I was very high up. I couldn’t tell how high, but it looked like whatever floor we were on, we were in one of the tallest buildings around. There was a deck with lounge chairs with white but comfortable looking cushions, and what looked to be a hot tub in the corner. The entire deck had a wall of glass around it.
As I walked around the house, I noticed there were a few pictures or paintings on the wall, but they were all covered with white fabric. Why were they covered? I thought about looking at what was underneath but thought better of it. I didn’t even know where I was and it would be rude to invade someone’s privacy like that.
Eventually, I gave into the temptation of the reading room and grabbed The Count of Monte Cristo and sat down on the comfortable bed. I jumped up with a squeak when the man from upstairs startled me. I covered my mouth, embarrassed by the noise. How had I not heard him come into the room?
“You’re awake,” I finally said after staring at him for a few minutes. I craned my neck to look up at him. He was tall. Probably a foot taller than myself if I had to guess.
“I am,” he said as he walked closer to me. “I didn’t mean to scare you. I’m sorry.”
“No, I’m sorry. I didn’t hear you come into the room. Do you… do you know what happened to me?”
He nodded his head and then motioned with his arm for me to follow him. He led us into the living room and I sat down on the large white couch when he stopped in front of it. He stood staring at me for a minute before he sat down next to me. He shifted his body to face me then moved his hands toward me in what seemed like an attempt to hold my hand, but instead he placed his hands in his lap.
“You were in a car wreck. A very bad one. We’re lucky that you didn’t die,” he paused looking away with a pained look on his face. I almost died. I guess I should feel lucky that I’m alive even though I can’t remember anything.
I felt anger and sadness flash through me. I must have gasped because the man from upstairs quickly turned toward me fast. Almost too fast.
“Can I ask you a question?”
I laughed, “You may regret saying that. I seem to have a lot of questions. I can’t seem to remember anything.”
He nodded his head, “You can ask me anything.”
“Thanks,” I said and he gave me a sad smile. “What’s your name? I’m sorry, but I don’t remember you. How do we know each other?”
“My name’s Eric. Eric Northman.” I held out my hand to shake his. He looked at it for a moment before shaking my hand. Again, his hand was cold.
“Why’s your hand so cold?” I blurted out before I could stop myself.
“I’m a vampire.” My eyes widened and my mouth dropped open, but he continued. “Since we are dead, our body’s temperature is normally the temperature of the room.”
“A vampire. Are you serious? Vampire’s don’t exist. Do they?” Although I couldn’t remember anything, it didn’t seem like vampires would exist. He certainly didn’t seem like a monster.
“I am here to prove otherwise. We’ve been out of the coffin for two years.”
“Out of the coffin?” I asked with an incredulous stare.
“It’s the term we used when we revealed our existence to the human world,” he explained.
“Right…look, just because your body’s cold doesn’t make you a vampire. It could be your thyroid.” Again how I knew it could possibly be his thyroid I had no clue. This was getting frustrating.
“But it’s not. Don’t worry, I won’t hurt you,” he said giving me a stunning smile.
“I’m not worried. For some reason, I trust you, but maybe I shouldn’t; you might be crazy.” It was strange, but I did feel as if I could trust him. If what he said about the accident was true and he brought me to his home. This …. Eric must want to keep me safe and I must mean something to him.
He smiled and it was such a nice smile it made me smile back at him, but inside I wanted to melt. He had looked so serious since he came downstairs that it was nice to see him happy.
“Prove to me you’re a vampire,” I said. He arched an eyebrow and a small lazy grin played on his lips.
“You’re definitely taking this much better than I thought you would. Much better than most have.”
“Well, like I said for some reason I trust you,” I shrugged. “I don’t know why I just do which is a good thing since I can’t remember anyone. It would be bad if the only person I was around made me feel like I couldn’t trust them.”
“I’m happy you trust me,” he said with a stunning smile. “I’m going to do something to prove to you that I’m a vampire and I don’t want to scare you. Okay?”
I nodded my head. “Go for it,” I said. The only person I knew was crazy. Great.
I heard a clicking sound and then fangs appeared in Eric’s mouth. Fangs! Was he really a vampire?
I reached out and touched one of them while tilting my head, as I got closer to try to get a better look at them.
“Wow,” was all I could say. When I touched the other, I noticed that Eric closed his eyes. I jerked my hand back. How rude was it that I was touching him in that way?
“I’m so sorry, I can’t believe I just did that. Please forgive me.”
He smiled and I froze under the heat of his intense gaze. “I don’t mind. You’re curious.” I watched with fascination as his fangs slowly disappeared. My heart skipped a beat as he slowly started to lean closer to me.
“You can touch me whenever and wherever you like, Sookie,” he purred at me.
I gasped and stared at him in disbelief as the scorching heat of my blush stained my face and neck.
He chuckled and leaned back, never moving his eyes from mine.
“So h-how do vampires differ from humans?” I stuttered, trying to regain my composure.
“We are stronger, faster, have better eyesight, hearing, some of us have special gifts. We cannot be out in the sunlight. We are only awake while it is dark outside. There are not very many ways to kill us. We do not become sick or age. We can glamour humans into doing anything or forgetting certain things.”
“It all sounds great except for the sunlight and not being awake when it’s light outside. Is there anything else?”
He hesitated for a moment. “We only consume blood.”
I scooted away from him in the hopes that he wouldn’t want my blood. “How do you get the blood you need?”
“Most of the time we drink it from humans,” I gasped and covered my mouth. Did he think he was going to drink from me? “Don’t worry. I won’t hurt you.”
“I would hope not,” I said, as I removed my hands from my mouth. “Can you get blood any other way?”
“Yes, although this way is least preferred by vampires. A couple of years ago, a Japanese scientist came up with a synthetic blood. It wasn’t for vampires but when we learned of it, we decided it would be the perfect time to reveal ourselves. Technology was getting too advanced and it was getting harder and harder to hide our existence. We told the public that we could survive on this synthetic blood called True Blood.”
“Do you drink this True Blood?”
“I do sometimes, but I prefer not to.”
I hated to ask this since I was afraid of the answer, but I had to know. “Where do you normally get your blood from?”
He looked over at me. Maybe judging how I was taking the news of the existence of vampires, that they drank blood and that he was one. It didn’t really matter to me. I couldn’t remember anyone. He seemed nice to me, so far.
“Normally I drink from you,” he said, but quickly added. “But if you do not want me to I can drink True Blood.”
“I don’t think I want you to,” I said as I wrapped my hands around my neck. “I’m sorry. It’s just that I don’t know you. You seem nice and all, but I’m a little afraid of getting bit.”
“I understand and I won’t pressure you, but I can promise you that you have nothing to be afraid of and I would never hurt you. I have taken blood from you many times before and you’ve always enjoyed it.”
“I’m sure you can find someone else who would be happy to give you their blood. You’re a good looking guy and all.” I blushed looking away. I couldn’t believe I had just said that aloud.
He gave me a sad smile before looking away once again. Did I do something to hurt his feelings?
“I’m sorry. Did I say something wrong? Is that not how it works for a vampire to get blood?”
“It is and that’s how most vampires get the blood they need.”
“Is there a reason that you don’t or can’t?” I asked him. He was still looking away and it made me feel guilty that I’d said something to upset him.
“Hey,” I said as I moved closer to him and taking his large, cool hand in mine. He looked down at the hand I was holding so I tried to move it. Afraid that I’d overstepped my boundaries, but as I started to pull away, he grasped it in both of his hands and then looked at me.
“I can. I just won’t. I will drink True Blood,” he grimaced.
“What was that look for?” I asked.
“It’s unappealing, but it will provide what I need.”
“Can I ask you another question?”
“Of course. You can ask me whatever you’d like.”
“How do we know each other? Is it because I give you my blood?”
“No,” he shook his head. “We’re married. I’m your husband and we’ve been married for four years.”
“Married?” I choked out.
Eric nodded his head and I glanced down at my bare hands. If we were married I’d have a wedding ring, right? Can vampires even get married?
“Well,” I looked back up at Eric and lifted my hand. “If we really are, where’s my wedding ring.”
“It was taken off you when you were at the hospital. I didn’t place it back on your finger when we got home hoping it would not confuse you when you woke up.”
Oh, I reached around him to pick up his left hand. On his ring finger sat a wedding ring. “Can I have my ring back?”
“Of course you can. Do you want it now?”
When I nodded my head, he left the room so quickly that I didn’t even see him. Was this because he was a vampire or was there something else wrong with me?
He was back in a matter of moments and sat back down beside me. “Can I put them on you?” he asked.
I held out my hand to him and watched as he slipped a silver wedding ring with square diamonds all around it, on my finger first and then the engagement ring. It had a square diamond in the middle with two red stones on either side. It was beautiful and the way they sparkled in the light made it even more so.
“Do you approve?”
“Yes. It’s beautiful. Did I not approve before?”
“You did. I just wanted to see what you thought of them now.”
“Well, I don’t really have anything to compare them to, but I really think they’re beautiful. I like the silver with the stones.”
“It’s not silver. It’s platinum, the two stones are rubies, and the middle is a diamond,” he said as he pointed to each one. “Vampires can’t touch silver, so silver wedding rings would be quite painful.”
“Silver hurts you?”
“Yes, it burns us and makes us weaker.”
“Then yes, silver wedding rings would be a bad idea. I really like the platinum, diamond, and rubies,” I said while admiring my rings.
“Good,” he said and then kissed my hand. He looked up at me and the surprised look on my face. “Forgive me if I was too forward.”
I just smiled at him. I didn’t know what to say or do. Here I was married to this gorgeous man and I couldn’t even remember him. I wondered what this was like for him, his wife having no clue who he was.
“So when I came home from the hospital you knew that I had lost my memory?”
“Yes, but I was hoping that after you woke up that you might remember.”
“Can you tell me more about what happened?”
“When I woke up for the night. A little before sunset,” I nodded. “You were not home and I couldn’t feel you or get an exact location of where you were at.”
“Feel me? Location?”
“I’m sorry I forget you don’t know any of this. Let me explain.” When I didn’t say anything and only stared back at him he continued. “When a vampire gives a human their blood, the vampire can then feel the emotions of the human and their location. Although the first time this happens, it is very weak. After the third exchange between human and vampire, it creates a blood bond and it’s permanent. After the third exchange, the human can also feel the vampire’s emotions and locate him or her. They can also send emotions to each other. For example, if you were scared I could send you strength, calm, and reassurance. If you are sad, I can send you love. Does that make sense to you?”
“I think so.”
“Good. So, when I woke up I couldn’t feel you since you were essentially in a coma. I could feel that you were alive and a hazy location. Luckily, before I started to search for you, I checked my phone to see if I had any messages from you. Normally, if you’re not going to be home when I wake, you leave me a message if it’s unplanned. I had a phone call from the hospital letting me know you had been in a car accident earlier in the day. When I arrived shortly after sundown, I was informed that you had sufficient brain trauma and that there was damage to your brain. Because of where the damage was done they believed that you would most probably suffer from memory loss.”
“But you said you hoped I would wake up with them.”
“Yes,” he said with a heartbreaking smile. “I was hoping. When I got to your room, I gave you my blood to heal you. I was hoping that it would also heal the area of your brain where your memories are stored.”
“Oh. Can vampire blood heal those sorts of things?”
“Perhaps, but I think since it had been so long since the accident it didn’t work. If I would have been there right away then it may have helped. All of your other injuries are healed and I could only give you so much of my blood. I believe that since there were so many other injuries and they were so severe, my blood healed those and not the damage to your brain.”
“If you give me more blood now will it help me get my memories back?”
“I’m afraid not. I cannot give you any more of my blood right now without turning you into a vampire and it still might not work. It wouldn’t be very good for you to be a newborn vampire and have no memories.”
I nodded my head and looked down at my fidgeting fingers in my lap as I tried to comprehend everything he’d said. He was a vampire. I was his wife with no recollection of anything beyond this night. I lifted my gaze to find Eric watching me and I couldn’t help but notice how… young he looked.
“Can I ask how old you are?”
He chuckled at me, “I have been a vampire for over a thousand years.”
A thousand years. Wow. “You don’t look a thousand years old.”
“Vampires do not age.”
“Sorry. I forgot.”
“That’s alright,” he chuckled. “You’ve had a lot to take in, in a short amount of time.”
“How old were you when you were turned into a vampire?” I asked, extremely curious about this beautiful man or vampire that claimed to be my husband.
“I believe I was somewhere around thirty winters old. We didn’t keep very good records back then, so it’s hard to really know.”
I sat there for a few minutes letting all the information I was just given, run through my head. Trying to see if any of it felt familiar, but it didn’t and maybe it never would.
All of a sudden, my stomach let out an embarrassing growl. It was so loud that Eric looked at me shocked.
“Have you not eaten today?”
“Just a banana and water,” I confessed. “I didn’t know if I knew how to cook and was afraid, I might burn down this place. Plus, I haven’t been awake that long,” I said and shrugged.
“Let’s go into the kitchen and figure something out. Maybe we’ll have to get you some microwave meals until you learn how to cook again, you can eat out, or have meals made for you. Don’t worry we’ll figure this out together.”
Eric walked to the fridge and peered inside before grabbing ingredients and setting them down on the counter.
“I’ll make you a sandwich. I’m sorry I’m not much of a cook since I haven’t eaten any human food in over a thousand years, but I do know what your preferences are when it comes to your sandwiches,” he said proudly.
I stood and watched what he put on my sandwich so I would be able to make myself one tomorrow. After he was done making the sandwich, he got me a bag of chips and a can of Coke out of the fridge. He also got himself a True Blood and placed it in the microwave to heat it.
We sat at the kitchen table both having our meals. If you wanted to call it that.
“You mentioned that a human could feel a vampire when they have a bond correct?”
“And we have this bond?” I inquired.
“Then why can’t I feel you?”
“I’m blocking it from you. I thought it might be too much for you to handle right now. I don’t want to overwhelm you.”
“Thanks. I think it probably would overwhelm me right now. Can you feel what I’m feeling?”
“I can. I can choose to shut down the bond from either or both sides, but I have never shut down the side where I can feel you.”
“This must be hard on you. Me not remembering you.” He nodded. “Were we in love?”
“Very in love,” he said with a beautiful smile. “ Before you I had never been in love.”
“How can that be?” I asked. “You’ve been alive for so long?”
“It just is,” he said and shrugged his shoulders. “Maybe it’s because I was waiting to meet my mate for life.”
“So what are we going to do now?” I asked as I looked over at him and saw the raw determination in his eyes, Eric gave me a beautiful, seductive smile.
“I’m going to make you fall in love with me all over again.”
Below is a Gallery of their loft.