AN- All characters are property of Charlaine Harris.
Fangtasia was full of the most pitiful sort tonight. Though this was often the case for the vampire bar. The owner sat at the back surveying the bar barely disguising his disgust. Fangtasia was a magnet for humans that sought death. Little did they know that death was not as romantic as it often appeared in books and the modern movies. Many wanted life beyond death however and he could understand their desire to join his ranks. He felt that he was perhaps born to be a vampire. He was taught at a young age to be brutal and ruthless. No self-respecting vampire would turn a fang-banger however. It was disgusting even to consider. Such a vampire would be a constant disgrace as a child.
He was grateful that he did not have to hide in the shadows of society anymore but he was growing tired of the constant groveling. He watches as they strut around, each one vying for his attention. All of them hoping that the great Eric Northman will ravage them. Normally something like this might excite him, but it has become tedious. Briefly he considered bathing in the blood of every human present. The thought was lovely. Unfortunately being known by humans also means that they know who to stake.
He silently contemplates other ways to alleviate the repetition. He is a warrior, he should not be here playing to this pitiful crowd. Maybe he should move from here. He had acquired wealth and power in this tiny area but it seemed so hollow. He is vaguely aware of his child kicking away yet another worthless soul. At least she seemed to be enjoying herself. She savored the power he allowed her to possess in this pitiful setting. Maybe he should just leave the bar to her and return to his homeland. It had been so long since was there. The memories still painful to this day.
He closes his eyes briefly attempting to picture a different time and a different place. It had become increasingly difficult for him to remember his human life. It seemed the further he got from it the foggier his memories have become. Everyday was a battle back then. If he was not crushing his enemies, he was killing animals to bring home to his family.
Eric had not thought of his family in a long time. He found the memories too agonizing to dwell on for long. He once had a beautiful wife and three wonderful children. He could see them running to him as he returned home once again victorious. His long arms reaching out as he held them all close. The smile his wife would give only him promised a glorious welcome later.
His head slumps slightly as he remembers the night he lost her. She had just given birth to their sixth child and everything appeared well. But he was well aware of how things could turn quickly. They had lost two of their children within days of being born. She was resting quietly after the long process, her body exhausted. She held the baby next to her closely. He gently reached out to brush a stray hair from her face and noticed that she was burning. He reached for the baby and noticed the same heat radiating from it. Alarm spurred him to action. He ran to the midwife knowing already that he had lost them. They died within hours of each other. She clung to the child the whole time as if trying to will her strength into its fragile body. He buried them both in a beautiful tomb. She had her best broach on her dress, and he laid the baby on her breast.
Remembering such things was foolish however. He had learned long ago that dwelling on the past only brought heart-ache and severe depression. Silently he contemplates what had dredged up this ancient memory. He was jolted back to reality as he heard Pam breathe in sharply. She never did that, it was very human of her.
He quickly followed her gaze to the entrance. How could this happen? He stared in awe as the wife he was just remembering wandered through the door with some other vampire at her side. Rage flared in him. Seeing her with someone else is almost more than he can bear. With great effort he recalled that his wife died long ago and she can not possibly know how seeing her with another could hurt him. He pondered whether she had been instilled with the memories of their life together. He never imagined seeing her again. If she could be reborn then maybe the memories could as well. Did he dare to hope for such a thing? Suddenly he is very aware of how totally she could ruin him. A part of him welcomes it.
The whole bar pauses to watch her enter, it is obvious she does not belong here. Bill is such a fool, he is completely unaware who he has on his arm. He watches as they make their way to the bar and begin questioning Long Shadow. He strains to hear what is being said but the noise is too loud to make it out clearly. He leans over to Pam.
"You will answer her questions," he instructs her, "but not here. Take her to the bathroom or my office if you must." He does not care what the questions are he only wishes a moment to put the fear of the gods in Bill. He must not leave with her on his arm.
Pam understands instantly what Eric desires and she can not blame him. This human appears very tasty. Her fangs have drop just thinking about her.
"Do not touch her Pam!," he roars. The venom in Eric's voice shocks her. Normally he would not mind a little sharing, they had done it many times in the past.
"I wouldn't dream of it," she lies attempting to regain control of her fangs.
Eric could not take his eyes off of his beautiful wife as she moves across the room with this other vampire. She was even more magnificent than he remembered. He laughs at her choice of attire. No one wears white when entering Fangtasia. She shined like no other. He intends to make quick work of Bill. She was never meant for the likes of him.
They sit down at a table and Pam makes her way over to them. He watches as she suggests they go to the rest room to discuss her questions. His child has performed perfectly as she pretends to glance around nervously for the girls benefit. He watches in horror as his wife turns to Bill as if to ask permission. Eric's rage boils over. She should never have to ask permission from this idiot. Bill glances at Eric and sees the fire in his eyes. Bill quickly assures her that she will be fine and he will be sitting right there when she returns. She reluctantly gets up and exits with Pam.
Eric motions for Bill as soon as they are safely out of sight. Bill slowly gets up and approaches. The warning glare from Eric tells Bill that slow is not an option. He quickens his pace.
"What can I do for you Sheriff?," Bill says cautiously.
"Bill, are you quite attached to your friend?"
"She is mine," Bill rumbles, dipping his head slightly. It is a fine line he walks here and he is fully aware of this. He knew coming in here that Eric would want Sookie. What he doesn't grasp is the extent of Eric's fury. Surely Eric can have any woman he wanted, why would he pursue Sookie in this manner. Maybe he is aware that Bill is only here at the behest of the Queen. He must be more cautious.
"I very much doubt that she feels the same way Bill," he chuckles. He senses the bonds between them are very fragile indeed. He can smell her on him though and it only serves to enrage him further. "Give her the choice to come to me." He can see that Bill wants to deny him, but he can not.
"Very well," Bill agrees with a scowl.
Eric does not give him a chance to say more, he dismisses him to return to his table. It is almost an unfair game his is playing with this young vampire. Bill had no chance, but he had no way of knowing that Eric has known this woman for a thousand years. If his heart still beat, it would be jumping out of his chest. He can not believe his good fortune. He never thought he would see her again. He closes his eyes while waiting for the women to return. Below him he sees his beautiful wife sprawled out naked on a bed of soft furs. He let out a sigh, knowing that he is now fully erect.
Bill stares at Eric in shock. Of course he knew that Eric would try, but how can he think that he would succeed in taking Sookie from him. She was still too terrified of vampires to even let him near. He knew that her caring nature would be a problem here. He curses himself again for agreeing to this. He should have at least insisted she change her clothes. Not only did she smell delicious but she appeared as virtuous as she was. He hoped that she would go with the familiarity he could provide and not the hunk on the throne. There was no way he could compare to Eric. He can see that Eric is already visualizing what she will be like. Disgusting.
Pam was amazingly accommodating, she told Sookie everything that she needed to know. As she makes her way out of the rest room Sookie wonders if they should leave now or stay for awhile. The people here have incredibly boring minds. All they think about is sex and she is becoming tired of it. She sits back down next to Bill informing him that she has the information she was looking for.
"What did she want?," Eric asks Pam as she returns.
Pam rolls her eyes, "She wanted to know if I had seen a couple of fang-bangers in here. I don't understand the importance, but I told her I had. I even told her you had been with one."
"That was ill advised Pam." He did not want to soil his wife's opinions of him so soon. He could see however that Bill was about to address his companion. He would deal with Pam later.
Pam was getting a kick out of the entire scene, this night had turned quite entertaining. Nothing seemed to effect her maker anymore. He just drifted around doing whatever was required with no spark of enjoyment.
Bill steeled himself for the task he must now perform. "The vampire over there is handsome, he has scanned you twice."
"You're teasing me," she blushes. Sookie looked up to see who Bill was referring to. Her breath caught as she saw the vampire who was staring at her intently. Surely this vampire could not be interested in her, he was so gorgeous. His eyes locked on hers and she had a sudden sensation of falling. She grabbed the table to keep from dropping to the ground. She felt caught in his eyes, she could not turn away.
Who was this strange vampire and what spell was he casting on her? She must regain control. She felt as if she has slipped into the pools that were his blue eyes and now she was struggling for air. Did she know him? Surely she had seen him before somewhere. She was vaguely aware that Bill was still trying to talk to her. Unwillingly she turned back to see what he was going on about. A part of her was grateful for the moment of clarity. As if she had broken a spell. He must be glamoring her. But she had been sure that would not work on her. Perhaps she had underestimated her abilities.
A smirk crosses Eric's face. She is still confused, he will have to work harder. He leans forward slightly to listen to what Bill is telling her.
"If you are interested, I will let you go to him. But I would not be able to protect you anymore," Bill had to say it but he did not have to like it.
"Will he hurt me?," her brow furrows as she tries to recall how she knows this vampire. She somehow feels that he would not hurt her but she can't possibly feel this way about someone she hasn't even talked to yet.
"If you go to him it would mean that my claim on you is invalid. Every vampire here will want you. You are actually lucky that he wants you. He will keep the others away." Bill can not believe he has revealed so much, he hopes that she will appreciate his honesty and remain by his side.
"Maybe I'll just go talk to him," she still feels a connection somehow. She doesn't want to hurt Bill, but she needs to get to the bottom of this mystery. "Will you wait here for me?"
"If this is your wish," he takes a sip of his True Blood. The disappointment on his face is evident. She almost changes her mind but something tells her to continue.
She turns around once more and gathers up her courage. She can't believe that she is actually considering leaving Bill. He had saved her life and he was the one that brought her here in the first place. But aside from him 'claiming' her they didn't have a real relationship. She felt relaxed around him because she wasn't constantly being bombarded by his thoughts. But would she be better off with a different vampire? She acknowledged her ignorance in all things that involved vampires and dating for that matter. Her curiosity got the better of her however and she just had to get the bottom of this strange connection she felt.
She drifts toward Eric at an agonizingly slow pace. The crowd melts out of her way they must have sensed that something strange was happening. Her feet feel as if they had weights attached to them however and she can't seem to make them move any faster. Maybe this will buy her the time she needs to come to her senses. What could possibly be going on here? She wonders again if he is glamoring her? This seemed different though. It was more like she belonged with this vampire, had always belonged with him.
He smiles at her and she sees his fangs. She halts momentarily, her heart skipping a beat. He truly is frightening. She knew she should turn back and just let Bill take her home. Something in his eyes draws her in, beckoning for her to come to him. Trembling, she continues her approach. He can hear her heart racing and it is just too much for him. He could not control his fangs, he thought he would never see her again. The anticipation was killing him, he wanted her now. He knows however that is is important that she come to him freely but he barely controls the urge to shout triumphantly. For he knows that she has returned to him.
Bill stares in shock as he watches Sookie. She seemed to be in a trance as she slowly moved toward the ancient vampire. Perhaps Eric's powers were far greater than his. Bill shouts for Sookie to reconsider and is instantly restrained. Pam's grip is unbreakable and Bill knows there is no point in trying, she was much older then he. Sookie did not even hear Bill's protests.
The entire bar has stopped to see what all the excitement is about. No one makes a noise and the only thing heard is the music being played. None of them grasp the true rarity of this meeting. Eric is pleased that Pam has taken care of Bill so handily. He can not take his gaze from Sookie or he may lose her again.
She halts before him with a questioning look on her face. She stares into his eyes attempting to remember where she has seen him before. Instantly she is blinded by the image of him above her. She is laying on a soft bed of furs. She blushes as she realizes they are both naked. How can this be? She has never slept with anyone let alone this vampire in front of her. He knows what she is seeing, her face is flushed.
Suddenly she remembers her manners, "Hi, I'm Sookie Stackhouse." She glances at her feet shyly, and a vain attempt to break this hold he has over her.
"Aren't you sweet," Eric observes.
"Not especially," she replies.
There is her fire. He knew it was there somewhere. He lets out a laugh.
"Do we know each other? I feel like I know you but I know we have never met before. How do I know you?" She can't help but ramble when she is nervous.
He stares at her intently. Will she flee if he tells her the truth? Will she ever trust him if he doesn't? He decides somewhere in the middle may be safer.
"I knew someone who looked just like you once. She was very dear to me," he can not keep the sadness from his eyes.
"Surely she didn't look exactly like me. That seems...improbable." Her brows wrinkle as she contemplates whether such a thing is actually possible.
"It is, in fact, very improbable. Imagine my surprise when you walked in here." He flashes her his best smile.
"What was I to you?" She can tell he is trying to skate around truth, but she feels that she needs to know.
He decides to test the depth of her memories. He replies to her in his native tongue, "You were my beautiful wife." Eric hears Pam let out an evil hiss.
He watches as Sookie turns a delightful shade of red. She has understood him perfectly. He praises who ever has seen fit to bring her back to him.
Smiling widely Eric leans forward slightly,"I seem to have forgotten my manners, my name is..."
"Eiríkr," she proclaims. She doesn't know how she has this knowledge, but she knows without a doubt that this is his name.
Eric's eyes shoot open wide in disbelief. "Oh Sookie, no one has called me that in a thousand years. It sounds so plain to be known as Eric now that I hear you say that. Though truly you used to shout it." He gives her a wicked wink and is delighted to hear her heart skip a beat.
She breathes deeply trying to regain her composure. Suddenly her head whips around.
"One of the tourists is a cop in disguise, and he just went to the bathroom, and he knows that a vampire is in there sucking on the neck of a fang-banger. He's already called the police on his little radio." She says this so quickly that she is completely unaware that she has used the same language that he addressed her with.