Disclaimer: If you recognize it, then it belongs to Charlaine Harris or Alan Ball because it's definitely not mine.

Written because a stubborn muse would not allow me to move on with my other story until I got this out on paper. It's basically completely gratuitous sex with little to no redeeming factors, except a small effort exerted to create some kind of character arc. But really, it's all about the sex.

WARNING: BOOK 3 [AND POSSIBLE SEASON 3] SPOILERS

Porch Swing

Bill was gone.

When I came out of the bathroom ready to give the rest of my life over to him, he had vanished, leaving me with nothing but the check in a restaurant in shambles. I was standing in front of the dining room in the loveliest dress I owned, absorbing the overturned chairs and ruined tablecloth. What happened? Was I just jilted before I even had a chance to walk down the aisle?

Stunned, I righted the chair that had been lying on its side and sat down, my arm draped over the back as my mind slowly wound around the situation. Bill was gone. And I was alone. From the broken glass and disheveled furniture, it was clear that he was probably taken. At least that's what my gut was telling me--what my heart was hoping for--I knew he would never leave me like that, no matter how angry or hurt he was.

It didn't even occur to me that I could be in danger. Someone apparently had been strong enough to rip a full-grown vampire away from hearing the answer to his marriage proposal, leaving me here alone, defenseless. If they were still around, they could take me too, or worse, with seemingly little effort.

Even with the scary possibilities of what could happen flickering in the back of my mind, I didn't move. I was completely numb. The love of my life had just disappeared; I knew I should be crying and panicked, but all I felt was cold emptiness.

After a few long moments of suspense, it was clear that I had to do something if I wanted to leave the restaurant. The restaurant staff was nowhere to be found, and I had no cell phone, no money, and no way to get home. So I sat there alone, trying to focus on how to be proactive and get my would-have-been fiancée back. Numbly, I stood and wandered to the back of the restaurant, through the kitchen, and into a small office where I flipped on the lights and found sure a phone sitting on the corner of a massive, mahogany desk—a desk that reminded me too much of the one in Fangtasia's office.

That was enough to bring one potential, blonde rescuer to the forefront of my mind, along with a sudden heated flush. Almost the instant the thought made an appearance, I dismissed it.

Not him.

Never him.

After everything Eric did to come between me and Bill in Dallas, I knew he would only use this situation as leverage against me, and then I would never be able to get away from him. There had to be someone else I could call.

I quickly flipped through the short mental list of the people I would normally ask for help with this kind of situation but had some difficulty with the selection. Tara was first on my list, but she was definitely dealing with her own mess, and I didn't want to drag her into my own. Then came Lafayette, who was still recovering from the whole Maryann disaster, so that was a no-go. That left one person who might be able to help. At the very least, he would be able to give me a ride home.

A decision made, my fingers danced quickly across the keypad, dialing a number that was more familiar to me than my own.

"Sam?" I said, when he picked up at Merlotte's. Even though he was in his office, I still managed to hear the usual weekend crowd milling around through the bar. Normally I would have felt guilty about tearing him away on such a busy night, but tonight I had good reason. "I need your help."

~*~

Bill had been missing for two weeks; I wasn't even sure that he had been kidnapped any more. Other than the mess at the restaurant, there were no clues. Nothing to say that he didn't just up and leave me.

Sam did what he could with what he had available to help me, which wasn't much. He had reached out to the local Shifter community and asked if anyone heard anything odd about a vampire going missing, but no one had heard any information. Not that they would have said anything if they had. Vampires and Shifters weren't exactly allies.

I knew that Eric already was aware of what was going on with Bill, so I didn't bother going out of my way to tell him anything. Knowing him, he probably found out shortly after I did. The night after the botched-proposal at the restaurant, I came home to a voicemail from our friendly, Area 5 Sheriff.

"I will let you know when I hear something," was all it said.

Even through my answering machine, Eric's voice still made me shiver. I didn't remember giving him my phone number.

It wouldn't have made a difference if I had gone to him that night. Whether I asked him for help or not, Eric had a responsibility to find and rescue Bill. That was his role as Sheriff. If I had gone to him for help, then he would have used the situation to his advantage and manipulated me. That's how he was. This way I was free from him and had some peace knowing that Eric was putting some kind of effort into the search for Bill. At least that's what I told myself to ease the dark stirring of guilt wedged between my heart and my gut.

By doing nothing and avoiding Eric, I was saving my relationship with Bill. That was what mattered. Being around Eric was poisonous. And I needed to focus on bringing Bill home; he was the most important thing.

Through it all, I kept blind to the fact that I had yet to cry over his disappearance. It was the shock.

Since that night, most of my time has been spent idling away the hours at work or at home waiting by the phone for some news. The rest of the time I felt numb. I had expended so much effort building up walls to block out other people's thoughts and emotions that now even my own feelings were walled off inside me.

Tonight I was home by myself with nothing but the local news for company. Sam had called and told me that the bar was dead and I didn't need to come in. With absolutely nothing to distract me, I munched slowly on an apple and forced myself to stop picturing Bill tied to a stake while the sun breached the eastern horizon.

Despite my best efforts to distract myself, memories of Dallas began to slip through the cracks and awaken a fresh trickle of pain… and lust. Too much had happened there that I hadn't even begun to feel the ramifications. Then so much had happened here in Bon Temps that I was left dangling at the very end of my sanity under the combined weight of two, practically simultaneous, life-altering experiences. There were only so many crises a girl could handle.

A soft rapping against the screen door interrupted my snacking, and I rushed to see if it was someone with news of Bill, not caring that I was wearing nothing more than a short white tank top, sans bra, and a pair of Jason's ratty jeans. Usually I only wore them to do yard work, but I hadn't done laundry since Bill disappeared, and they were one of the last clean pants I had left. My hair was pulled in a messy bun to keep it out of the way, and it had been quite awhile since any makeup touched my face. Basically, I looked like hell.

I didn't know who else would have been able to give me information about Bill, but I was still surprised to see Eric standing on my front porch. And a little excited, but that was not my fault. I loved Bill, no matter what Eric tricked me into swallowing. The moment his cold eyes met mine through the screen, my heart froze; this was not going to be good news.

His white t-shirt seemed to fade into the ethereal skin of his arms, while his hair seemed to reflect the little light that radiated from the sky, creating a halo effect. I reminded myself to laugh later at the thought of an angelic Eric. I was sure I would need something to cheer me up after this visit.

"Eric," I greeted, my voice flat. In the back of my mind, I wondered if this was how war widows felt when a couple decorated soldiers dropped off a telegram and a folded flag.

"May I come in?" his voice was light and careful, like coming inside my home would not give him even more power over me. I saw his eyes flicker down to my left hand where Bill's ring was waiting to become official then back up to my face.

Determined that he would never get any closer to my house than the front door, I shook my head.

"No," then without knowing why, I joined him on my porch. Not the smartest move on my part in retrospect.

I peered into his face, searching for clues to what he was going to tell me, but it was completely void of any emotion. It was a few seconds before he spoke.

"I found Bill."

I felt my heart lurch to life, and time slowed down by half. Years seemed to pass by before I managed to respond.

"Is he alright?" I asked after a forced recovery. My arms were crossed loosely across my chest in a pathetic attempt to cover myself up. "Where is he?"

"Sookie, you should sit down—"

"Damn it, Eric, just tell me!" I yelled, all my pent-up frustration over the last two weeks bursting out of me. I probably should have apologized, but I didn't care enough to make the effort. "I can handle it."

"Bill is with Lorena."

Okay, maybe I did need to sit down. My hands moved up to my face as my mind wrestled with conflicting emotions. Joy that Bill was alive. Anger that he was with Lorena. Jealous that they were together. All with a healthy dose of lust tossed in the mix, which only grew stronger the longer Eric stared at me—damn that vampire blood.

"What?"

"She was the one who took him from the restaurant."

My knees buckled slightly beneath me.

"Well, how do we get him back?" I demanded, struggling to hold myself together in front of Eric.

"She is his Maker," he shrugged softly. "She has every right to take him whenever she pleases."

"Don't give me that bullshit. She released him… years ago!" I snapped, wagging my finger in his face as if I were chastising a child. "You just won't go after him. You're glad he's out of your way!" I was yelling now, hurling my words at Eric like bricks.

Eric's fangs flashed in the moonlight, and it was clear I was having an effect.

"You will not question how I handle my responsibilities as Sheriff, human," his voice had lowered into a barely audible hiss, and he took a threatening step toward me, but I held my ground. "Every vampire in my Area looks to me for security, and when it is warranted, I provide it. But my protection has limits. This happens to be one of them."

As he spoke, my resolve melted away like an ice cube thrown into a pot of boiling water. This wasn't happening.

"Please, Eric," I pleaded. "We have to do something!"

"He is bonded to her," he replied. "Even though Lorena released him, she still holds power over him and may call for him whenever she wants."

"But she didn't call for him, she took him!" I argued.

Another shrug. "It doesn't matter."

Well, fine. If Eric wouldn't help Bill, then it was up to me. All I had to do was find out where that bitch took him. Then I could sneak Bill out during the day when they both were dead and bring him back where he belonged.

"Where are they?"

"Trying to bring him back won't make a difference," Eric said, apparently reading my mind. How odd to be on the receiving end of telepathy.

"What do you mean? If I could just—"

"Bill may have been taken against his will, but now he is choosing to remain with her," he interrupted.

Tears immediately stung my eyes and threatened to spill forth, but they got no further than a soft sheen and a choked sob. My head shook back and forth, refusing to believe what Eric told me. This was just another of his stupid tricks. It wasn't true.

"No," my head continued shaking back and forth as if it could keep the reality of the situation away from me. "It's not true. You're trying to trick me."

"Sookie," Eric took another step forward with his fangs retracted. He placed his hands on my shoulders and looked me deeply in the eye. "It is true."

I shook my head harder. "No."

Eric's hands moved from my shoulders to grip my neck, forcing me to look him in the eye.

"Yes."

I expected to see a glimmer of smug triumph peeking through his mask of apprehension, but I found nothing except insistence and sincerity. Bill was really gone. I lost him.

"You're not even going to try to get him back?"

"I've already told you it's beyond my power."

I nodded curtly, regaining some control as my pain turned to anger that Eric would so willingly abandon Bill after everything we had done to help him and that Bill would so easily abandon me.

"Well, thank you for coming all the way out here to tell me," I said like I was telling a customer to have a good night as he stumbled out the door.

I took a step back and turned to go inside. Despite Eric's warning that Bill was lost to me, I was determined to try and get him back. What kind of girlfriend would I be if I didn't at least try to free my boyfriend from captivity? There was no way he willingly chose Lorena over me, not after she showed us what she was capable of in Dallas.

When I pulled the screen door to let myself in, it stuck. I looked up to see what was in the way and saw Eric's massive hand pressed against the aluminum frame, holding it shut to keep me outside with him. Adrenaline began to trickle into my system, preparing for the inevitable disaster that occurred whenever I was with Eric.

"What do you want now?" I turned to face him and was surprised by the conflicted expressions on his face.

"Why didn't you come to me for help?" he asked after a few moments' hesitation. Despite the long reach of his arm, which was still holding the door shut, he was standing less than a foot away from me.

"That is none of your business," I was slightly pleased to see that going around him had ruffled his feathers enough that he felt the need to confront me about it.

"Bill is a vampire in my Area," he replied. "It is my business." Despite the night's warmth, a cold shiver ran through my body like someone sprinkling ice water down my back, effectively wiping away any satisfaction I felt.

"Tell me," he pressed, taking another step toward me. I hoped the bond he tricked me into forging was too weak for him to feel the butterflies fluttering in my stomach.

Knowing that Eric wouldn't let me leave before he had an answer, I decided to tell him the truth.

"Because I don't trust you," I said looking him dead in the eye.

"No."

"No?" My eyebrows raised in surprise.

"No," he repeated. "You don't trust yourself around me." As soon as he said the words, I stumbled for no reason and grabbed onto the side of the house to keep myself upright.

"Whatever, Eric." I said. "Let me go inside, I have a lot to do," I turned and yanked on the door to emphasize my desire to leave, but he ignored me. As usual.

"Even now," he began. "I come here to tell you that your lover has left you for another, and your reaction is to thank me for taking the trouble, then leave. Are you really that afraid to be near me?"

"Because it took me by surprise!" I countered, whirling away from the door to face him.

"Is that all?" he smirked and lightly slid one long finger along the skin of my forearm all the way up to my shoulder, alighting little flurries of warmth that seemed to send electric pulses directly into my stomach. Well, the tone of this visit certainly did a 180 in the space of ten seconds. His mouth stretched into a full grin when he leaned forward, close enough so that his lips brushed against the wisps of my hair when he spoke. "You know I can feel everything you do."

"You disgust me," my voice was cold as steel.

He smiled as he traced the outline of my collar bone with his cold fingers, catching the straps of my tank top and sliding them down my shoulders.

"We both know that's not true," he whispered before gently sucking on my ear lobe.

I twisted my neck and broke away from him. "Eric, stop!" I meant to sound like I was serious, but my voice came out in a breathless, wanton whisper that only encouraged him further. His lips moved down slightly from my ear to suck on the very top of my jaw line. I couldn't hold back a moan. The sensation of his cool mouth on my hot skin was too powerful.

Eric could feel my head at war with my desire and increased his efforts to sway my decision. Pressing me all the way into the screen door, his hands began to roam across my body seeming to know exactly the right buttons to push. They were around my waist, cupping my face, dripping down my sides, and caressing my curves all at once. I kept both my arms pressed flat against the sides of the door, terrified that if I moved so much as a finger, it would all be over, and Eric would finally have what he's been after for the last few weeks.

"Why do you deny yourself?" his voice was like velvet so close to my skin.

"You know why," I managed to whisper between two ragged breaths.

Eric backed away slightly to look me in the eye. "He doesn't deserve you."

Before I could argue, Eric pressed his lips to my cheek, just below my eye. "He cannot protect you."

He repeated the process on the other cheek. I tried to squirm away from him, but his arms easily kept me pressed against the door.

"He will not fight for you."

Then bringing his hands up the sides of my body, raising an army of goose bumps as they brushed against my skin, he gently grabbed the sides of my face, burying his fingers in my hair, which had come loose at some point during our encounter. His eyes bore deep into mine, and I knew right then that this was the point of no return.

"He let you go."

The truth of his words pierced through the fog of my lust long enough for me to forego my loyalty to Bill willingly. When Eric pressed his lips to mine, I didn't hesitate before responding with all the vigor and force he showed me.

Kissing Eric was nothing like kissing Bill. Bill's kiss always had a certain rhythm to it that rarely varied. His kisses were always nice, but they never came close to exciting me the way this one did. Eric was completely wild and unpredictable as his mouth overpowered my senses. I could barely keep up. His lips expertly and uncontrollably kneaded and sucked my own while his tongue swept through my mouth depositing an entirely new series of sensations. I had experienced countless mind-blowing dreams of kissing Eric, but they were as good as kissing the back of your hand compared to the real thing.

When his arms came around me again I allowed my own to encircle his neck as he pulled me closer to him. We folded our bodies together so that they molded perfectly to every one of each other's curves. The attraction was magnetic, and denying it now was impossible. I couldn't stop even if the lives of everyone I cared about depended on it.

Eric bent down toward me, and I reached up toward him, as he continued to wreak havoc in my mouth. I don't know how much time passed before I felt his hand slip beneath the hem of my tank top and slide up to cup my breast. Since I had been relaxing by myself at home before Eric showed up, there wasn't anything hindering his fingers from brushing against my very attentive nipples, which he seemed to like—a lot; I felt, rather than heard, a rumble in his chest as his fingers lightly pinched and twisted, making me writhe against him.

I squirmed and moaned into his mouth, involuntarily raising my leg over his hip in a subconscious attempt to move even closer to him. Eric grabbed it with his free hand and pushed me further into the door, effectively lifting me up and folding my legs around him, so that I could easily feel his excitement pressing against me.

It wasn't until Eric began to lift my tank top over my head that I remembered we were outside where anyone could see us and had to rip my mouth away from his.

"Should we go inside?" I breathed between moans after Eric ripped the material over my head and replaced the fingers on my breast with his mouth.

"No," he said immediately, quickly returning to his ministrations.

When he began to stoke the heat between my legs through the denim, I stopped caring that we were on my front porch. We could have been in the middle of a parade and I wouldn't have thought twice, so long as Eric didn't stop.

Wanting to feel more of his skin against me, I began to claw at his t-shirt, managing to tear along the seam from his collar down to the end of his massive shoulder. Eric looked up at me and laughed once before pulling the ruined shirt over his head. Once it was out of the way, he began to lick and suck his way up my chest and neck, back to my mouth. My hands roamed hungrily across the vastness of his chest, reveling in the feel of his perfect muscles beneath my palms while his fingers continued to stroke me, blocking everything else out but him..

I wanted more and slipped my hands down his chest to feel him through his jeans. Even through the thick material he jerked his hips when he sensed my touch and growled deep in his throat. I cried out when I felt his fangs scrape gently against my neck leaving two searing trails down my skin.

My other hand moved toward the waistband of Eric's jeans and quickly began to work at the button, so I could feel all of him pressed against me. He responded in kind and began to work at removing my own pants, each of us finding it difficult because of the growing tension in our bodies. I freed Eric first, and he immediately let his pants slide down his legs and then kicked them off his feet.

I was pleased to see that he wasn't wearing anything else and quickly brought my hand back to him, feeling a little trickle of fear when I realized that I could barely wrap it all the way around. Eric buried his face in my neck as I began to move my arm and moaned hungrily. When two of his long fingers slid inside me, I screamed.

Eric then wrapped his arms around my waist and pulled me even tighter against him as he swung me around and carried me over to the swing on the far side of the porch where I used to sit and drink lemonade with Gran while we played board games. Eric sat me down on the worn cushions and pulled off both my jeans and underwear with vampire speed before pulling me to him. The swing groaned softly under the suddenness of our combined weight, but it held.

As soon as all material barriers were gone, we became a tangle of limbs, licking, sucking, moaning, and thrusting against each other's hands. All our shared pain, struggle, and loss from the last few weeks had compounded, and we each needed to release it by fucking each other's brains out. We were no longer coherent, sentient beings, but animals behaving solely based on instinct. All thoughts of Bill, and Lorena, and Dallas had evaporated. It wasn't about Eric and Sookie anymore. This had become a primal need, and morality was no longer at the forefront; all that mattered was this single moment, nothing else.

Eric's fingers twisted and thrust inside me while my hips bucked against his hand, begging for more. Each second that went by without that satisfaction was pure torture. Finally, Eric relented and pressed his fingers deep and twisted them so that they stroked all the right spots simultaneously. I was wriggling uncontrollably beneath him, my moans growing louder each time he jerked his hand. It was a good thing the only person nearby who could have heard us was currently being imprisoned by his ex.

When he pulled his hand away, my eyes stretched open, horrified that he would leave me dangling so close to the edge, but he too was lost in his need for completion.

Standing before me, Eric pulled my legs around him and entered me in one quick, heard thrust. I didn't even have time to feel intimidated by his size. The rocking of the swing matched his movements, pushing him deeper and further, with each stroke bringing wave after wave of pleasure all throughout my body. I moaned gutturally, and Eric doubled his pace.

Our eyes were locked onto each other, never blinking and never straying, despite the insurmountable pleasure ravaging both our bodies. We were dancing alongside the edge of a massive cliff, waiting for the wind to pick up and knock us over the side.

Eric was somehow coherent enough to manipulate the angle of the swing, stretching the limits of my pleasure further then they had ever been before.

Suddenly a blinding white flash of light bright enough to wash the night away blazed in front of my eyes. The sounds of the crickets chirping, and the swing squeaking, buried beneath our own animalistic noises, disappeared when I finally tipped over the edge. It was like a cup overflowing with water; the water had risen to the rim, then slowly began to spill over, gathering speed and strength while the cup continued to be filled. By the time I reached my peak, it was crashing down on me like a waterfall. The entire universe was exploding within every cell in my body, obliterating the world as I knew it. I screamed and Eric thrust deeper than anyone ever had before he fell on top of me, lost in the throes of his own pleasure.

When he bit me, I came again.

After it was over, neither of us could move without aftershocks ripping through our bodies, so we stayed tangled up on the swing and waited to come back to earth. Eventually, Eric's fingers began to sift through my hair. I closed my eyes and rested my head against his shoulder, enjoying the pleasant sensations his fingers sent through the rest of my body.

Unconsciously, I began to play with Bill's ring that was still decorating my finger.

"Do you really mean to go after him?" Eric asked after some time, gently rubbing his fingers along my cheekbone and pushing a strand of hair behind my ear.

I nodded. "I have to. I need to be sure that it's what he wants."

Eric looked at me thoughtfully for a moment, contemplating something. "They're in Mississippi," he said finally.

I sat up to look at him more closely to see whether he was telling the truth, but Eric immediately pulled me back to him and into another toe-curling kiss. I didn't have the strength to resist him and the rumbling his kiss caused throughout my body was too strong to not kiss back.

When he finally broke away he rolled over so that he was pinning me to the swing. I could feel the smirk in his voice when he whispered in my ear. "And I'm going with you."