None of it's mine. She's not mine. He's definitely not mine or he'd be locked in my bedroom. Everything belongs to Charlaine Harris, who deals with things like plot and charachter development. I do not know what these things are.

Sookie gasped sharply as her eyes snapped open. Another vivid, full-sensation Eric dream. This time they were in his office; his hand had slithered about 8 inches up her wispy knee-length skirt when she startled awake.

Bill had warned her about the effects of those few drops of Eric's blood but she hadn't expected the unbidden carnal thoughts to come on this soon or this relentlessly. She was glad Bill wasn't in bed with her this time, surely he had to know what was happening.

No, thank heavens, he was coffined-up, locked in the back room in downtime, prepared to shift into dayrest at sunrise and stay there through the day so that he could be in top shape for the full night of top-secret-special-can't-tell-Sookie errands he had to finish up. Whatever. Ugh...she shouldn't be annoyed with him. He'd done nothing wrong. She was just agitated. The real culprit was the tall, cocky, oft-smirking Viking in the room down the hall.

Just who the hell did he think he was? She didn't give a damn if he was Sheriff of Area 5 or Duke of County 27, he was (sort of) a friend and definitely a business associate and he'd lied right to her face. To get what he wanted. Because he knew she wouldn't have given it freely. There was a word for that.

Fuck this, she thought throwing the covers off, maybe she couldn't change what had been done but she could certainly give that self-assured ass a piece of her mind. And he would hear it, even if she had to shout through a door or fight off the usual unprovoked attempt to get handsy.

She hastily tied a silky robe over her short nightgown and stomped down the hall as the anger swirled in her head. Her resolve was solidifying and her indignation was building. She was almost shaking with it when she came to his door, which was ajar.

She laid her palm against it and pushed gently, heart pounding, wondering if she was about to encounter a Sheriff meeting or, worse, Eric in flagrante delicto. She didn't even want to know what kind of depraved shit he got into when he found himself with an aquiescent fangbanger or, if it was even possible, an equally perverted playmate.

Instead, when she stepped over the threshold she saw Eric, alone and shirtless, on the edge of his bed. She couldn't deny how arresting the effect was. He didn't look surprised to see her and she couldn't tell what he'd been doing before she came in.

There were so many points of entry into what she wanted to say to (scream at) him, that at first she said nothing, just glared at him, seething and breathing hard. He looked up expectantly and she felt all her outrage rise to the surface. At herself for being naive, at the new power he held over her, but mostly right at the relaxed, half naked masterpiece seated a ten feet away. After a few pregnant seconds, he leaned back lazily and began.


"What the hell was that!?" she spat, cutting him off. "You selfish, entitled asshole! What were you thinking tonight? Did you expect that little stunt to endear you to me? I assumed we at least had some semblance of friendship! There are some things you can't just take with deception! You can't force yourself on someone who doesn't want you!"

He sat back and took it, listened with interest and let her rage herself out until she stopped.

Then, as though he were speaking to a child mid-temper-tantrum, he spoke factually.

"That was a blood bond. I was thinking that since I'd already taken the bullet, I could turn the opportunity to my advantage. I did not expect it to endear me to you, I expected it to tie me to you, which it did. Pleasant dreams tonight, Sookie?" he purred.

She rolled her eyes. "As for forcing myself on someone who doesn't want me," he enunciated the last part pointedly looking at her darkly, "is that really how you would truthfully describe it...?" he finished in a low growl.

She leveled her voice. "I would describe it as a business acquaintance taking advantage of me and betraying my trust."

He indicated himself; "um, vampire?" he reminded her.

"You lied to my face."

"I saw an opening and I took it. Your anger will fade, the bond will not." he said simply.

She threw up her hands exasperated but losing her edge, "Ugh! You're an insufferable rat bastard...and would you put a shirt on?!" She'd been distracted by seeing so much of him since she'd walked in, but it took her until now to get to that particular offense. It was hard to remain focused and furious while simultaneously confronted with such a broad and perfectly formed expanse of smooth, beautiful skin. The soft light in the room highlighted all the muscles underneath as he moved. It occurred to her that the lighting might not be a coincidence. Could he have felt her coming?

She wasn't proud of it, and she didn't show it, but she couldn't help but be drawn to such an ideal specimen of a man. He was breathtaking and he knew it. He radiated strength and dominance and a kind of effortless, natural confidence. She couldn't help it, she looked. His consummately distracting chest tapered into a narrow, solid waist, and the V of his hips dove into black drawstring pajama pants, probably the only thing he was wearing, knowing Eric.

He smirked at her. Of course he did. "Bothering you, lover?" She wished she could smack that smile right off his face, did he think this was some kind of victory? She sighed heavily. She would be getting exactly nowhere with this. And her feelings were taking a dangerous turn being so close to him.

She turned a fraction in the direction of the door before he said quietly, "Sookie, come here."

She looked back over her shoulder at him, unmoved.

"Come here," he repeated.

"I have nothing more to say to you."

"Come here."

"I hate you right now."

"Come here."

She hesitated briefly. This could be a really bad idea. She steeled her resolve and moved to stand in front of his seated form, just out of his reach. Planting her hands on her hips she looked down at him, though not by much, as if to say, what?

He leaned forward and pulled one of her hands off her hip and soothed it with both of his. It forced her to take a small step forward. "Is it really so terrible?" he said, low and soft.

She rolled her eyes with exaggeration to resist the sexual tone he always trying to set with her. But her body betrayed her intentions. A wave of pleasure rolled up her spine from the hand he was fondling and up to the back of her neck. He felt it and snickered very, very quietly.

"I can tell what you're feeling," he continued, "Yes. But I can also help you. If you--when you get into trouble, I will be able to find you quickly. It will be easier to protect you."

He did have a (very minor) point.

"Uh-huh, and the amped-up sexual attraction?" She pointed out.

"A little bonus," he said with a wolfish grin.

For her or for him?

As though he were calculating a chess move, he wrapped his hand, finger by finger, around the wrist of the hand he was holding. He pulled her toward him smoothly and placed his other hand on her hip, stroking her thorough her silky nightclothes and pressing his fingers into her.

"You know, Sookie..."

"Don't even think about it."

He chuckled softly. She was trying so hard, putting on such a strong face. But the bond didn't lie and it was coming through loud and clear. She took a step back. How cute. Good for her, for trying. It was noble even. He knew it wasn't easy for her, he could sense her inner battle. He also noticed she didn't put herself out of his reach.

Her body was screaming out for his attention, and he could tell as sure as if she'd said it. She wanted his hands all over her. She'd underestimated how adept and masterful his fingers would be. And she already figured he'd be pretty damn good. She relaxed just slightly into how firmly he was holding her wrist, and her eyes felt heavy. He was methodically stoking the fire in her belly, and she was starting to register the tingle of strategic parts of her body aching to be touched.

He used her wrist as leverage to spin her 180 degrees and in a blurred split-second he was standing behind her so her back was almost touching him. He slid his hands down her arms and up her sides to begin gently rubbing her shoulders.

After a full minute, he assured her, "Listen, my ferocious little kitten, I know you're upset..." He moved her hair over one shoulder and let his fingertips graze her neck, pushing her robe down a bit.

"I'm not your anything," she said without real conviction.

He bent down and kissed the sensitive spot on the side of her neck. "Alright."

"And it was nasty and underhanded."

"Yes," he said trailing the kisses calmly around to the back and then up her shoulder. Occasionally he would use his teeth on her skin lightly.

" the gall..."

Her earlobe.

"it...was deceitful..."

The nape of her neck--that sent a zing through her skull--and then downward, moving the robe.

"and you are...I see now...the worst sort of..."

"Mmm-hmm," he replied absently, his attention on her jawline and then her cheek as he took her chin softly but deliberately with two fingers, turning her face to him.

She shuddered and he moved the other hand around her waist, pressing her into him and holding her in place as he descended on her mouth. She could feel his lust and his intention through the bond and it only heightened her own response.

The man had had 1,000 years to learn exactly how to kiss a woman, and the result was devastating. He was an expert with an arsenal of weapons at his disposal. He swept his tongue into her now-pliant mouth and sucked at her bottom lip. He bit her just a little, giving her a moment to breathe, before crashing down on her again, hard. He had the precision of a surgeon and the finesse of an artist. This was what she told herself by way of explanation when she came to enough to realize what she was doing but didn't stop.

He had slowly and purposefully aroused her desire and had her teetering on the edge of surrender when she pushed him away. It had taken every last ounce of of discipline she had to break away and stumble backward.

"What are you doing?" she asked with unconvincing dismay.

He looked her directly in the eye. "You can't pull that with me anymore, Sookie, I can feel what you want," he said with diminishing patience.

"This isn't right."

"Is that so?" he said with a mildly skeptical look.

Sookie swallowed. "One of us has to be the responsible one here. I'm ending this little string of bad decisions right now," she said rigidly, heading for the door.

She never made it.

He grabbed her by the waist and in one graceful move, drug her back and pushed her onto the bed, trapping her under his own body.

"We're done fighting now," he informed her. He was gripping her her now by the wrists overhead with one hand, the other on her ribcage and his pelvis on hers.

He kissed her throat and the tops of her breasts where her robe had fallen open as she struggled.

"Eric, if you don't stop right now--"

"Don't threaten me," he said flatly without anger before returning to the valley of her cleavage.

He released her at the ribcage to peel her nightgown down off her breasts, which were very visibly aching for him. He obliged them.

"Ugh," she moaned involuntarily. Voluntarily, she bucked and tried to wriggle an arm free, which didn't seem to bother or deter him. He went on pleasuring her as thoroughly as if he were indulging a request. She struggled against his onslaught, twisting her hips. It was utterly futile, partially because he was much, much stronger and partially because she didn't really want him to stop. Finally she paused, panting, her chest rising and falling quickly to catch her breath. He stopped too and looked up into her eyes. She expected him to leer but he just looked...serious?

He skimmed his fingertips pointedly around one breast and then the other, not breaking eye contact. He cupped one gently and stroked his thumb over a nipple.

She watched him, her chest still heaving, a thin layer of sweat forming on her face. Her will was fighting so hard, but his hands felt amazing. It was as though she'd never been touched before and it felt so good. Reverent but possessive. Calculating. Authoritative.

His gaze swept down her body and back up into her eyes.

He reached down between them, drew her nightgown up and took hold of her by the sex.

He massaged in agonizingly slow circles through her panties, which were soaked straight through. She sucked in a gasp and her stomach tightened as she braced herself for what she knew was coming. Her thoughts weren't linear enough anymore to weigh the consequences.

He pushed the elastic down and slid his nimble fingers between her lips from back to front. He felt the full extent of her wetness dripping into his palm and raised an eyebrow at her.

Her whole body unwound at once and all her resistance vanished as she rolled her head back, closing her eyes, and letting a moan escape her throat. Her hips ground back on his fingers of their own accord and he smiled at his triumph.

She was struggling in a new way now, riding his fingers with abandon, trying to get more friction.

"Please..." she gasped, overwhelmed and desperate.

"Yes?" he said, still stroking her clit idly and occasionally dipping his fingers down to her entrance.

"Eric, please..." she groaned.

"Please what?"

"Touch me"

"I am touching you."

She looked at him pleadingly and he stroked her on that unstable edge a few more seconds for his own enjoyment. And to establish that she was begging him. Begging.

Then he plunged two fingers into her hot core and circled her clit with his thumb. It would have been bad enough had he been human. The skill with which he tormented her was world class. But he also had vampire speed and effectively full control over the timing, intensity, and duration of her orgasm. His thumb was vibrating on her.

When he couldn't wait any longer, he removed his thumb and replaced it with his equally dexterous tongue and mouth. She felt the swell of pleasure and finally came, exploding into pieces and calling out his name. The waves of delicious satisfaction rippled through her over and over. It hadn't been like this before, so deep, so intense, so complete. Her body thrashed beneath his ministrations as the pleasure drove up from every part of her body and crested brilliantly where her flesh met his mouth. He kissed and licked her as though he were kissing her mouth as she came down gradually.

He pulled himself up to lie next to her and tucked her into into his body, spooning and petting the outside of her mound until her breathing returned to normal.

She looked up at him then and he tilted his head down and kissed her softly on the lips. She deepened it and climbed on top of him, straddling his still-clothed hips and grinding herself into his erection. If she was going to hell, she may as well do it thoroughly.

She still hadn't seen him fully naked and she found herself strongly drawn to the hardness she felt between her thighs. It must have been chemical or something. She wanted it all over her, in her mouth, inside her, she wanted to press her face into his lap. She was suddenly obsessed.

She leaned down to his ear, "I want you." This she clarified with a well-timed grind.

"Not tonight, lover" he laughed.

"What?" She looked down at him confused, and a little hurt.

"It's almost dawn."

She looked over at the clock. Shit. When did that happen? "But..."

"Are you so unsatisfied, my love?" he asked with a smile.

She couldn't take her eyes off his prominent erection. "No, I just..."

"Come to me tomorrow," he said, reaching into his pocket and pressing a room key into her hand. "Sunset should be a little after eight o'clock. Come to my room at eight, lay down on the bed...wearing only this," he put a second thing in her hand. She looked down. A blindfold.

"I want you naked, blindfolded and waiting on my bed when I rise."

She shivered. Somehow, it occurred to her, leaving the room and returning crossed a different line. It was more planned, more intentional. But Eric had opened a whole new door. She knew things weren't going to be the same whether she returned to his room tomorrow or not.

He leaned down and kissed her, stood up, lifted her hand, and kissed that too. "Soon," he said, and vanished into the back room for the day.

She looked down at the contents of her fist and back up at his door as it closed.