So the preview for this week's True Blood had a teaser of Eric saying the line below to Sookie, and it got me thinking: if I'd been writing the script, how would I have played out that scene. So, here it is. Maybe someone else can try now too?
"If I meet the True Death without having once kissed you, that would be my greatest regret." Eric Northman
We were standing in Sam's office. I'd closed the door behind us as we'd come in. Eric's appearance at the bar, while not wholly unusual, was unexpected, and as people were generally not so well disposed to Vampires right at that moment; after Russell Edgington's on-air stunt of the night before, I hurried him to the back. Out of sight, out of mind I hoped. Sam seemed to agree.
Another thing I had not expected was Eric coming to tell me he was leaving in pursuit of Russell; I didn't know that I rated so highly in his life that he would feel the need to keep me in the loop about such things. That was until he made his little announcement. I swear, I must have looked like a big 'ol squirrel in a headlight staring back at him as those blue eyes bored right into my soul.
"Umm." Was about the best I could manage, but he was waiting for some kind of answer so I swallowed hard, straightened up my shoulders as best I could, leaned my head back so I see him properly and followed my initial outburst with a resounding, "Eric?" I sounded so pitiful. "I just don't think…" And then I ran out of words again.
He looked at me, with the oddest expression on his face, something so un-typically Eric-like. His eyes were wide and he wore a little half smile of resignation. Before I met Russell, Eric was the most powerful Vampire I'd ever met. He fairly oozed self-confidence and self-assurance; when it wasn't tempered by a blood lust that scared the life out of me. This was completely the opposite of that, and that frightened me more I think.
"I understand." His words were almost whispers, and he actually looked a little sad as he turned away from me and headed towards the one little window in the place.
I'm not sure when I first realized that Eric could fly, sometimes it was hard to tell, what with Vampires being able to run so quickly, like Bill and Jessica could. I was certain of it by the end of that night I can tell you.
In that moment, when he was standing there, hesitating, I had what they call in Church, an Epiphany. That's when suddenly you have a really important revelation about something; in Church it's a spiritual thing, that night, not so much. It kind of dawned on me that Eric was going off to try to kill Russell mostly predicated on a need for revenge for the murder of his family, but also, just a little part because of me, and because Russell wanted me for some reason. Eric knew that. And as much as he needed the vengeance, I like to think that my safety was also a part of his decision. And right then I saw Eric Northman in a very different light. Suddenly he wasn't just Bill's nemesis, or a vulgar, power hungry self-centered individual. Right then there was something I appreciated; that he was risking his life to try to save mine. Not that it was the first time, but it was the first time that I sensed he was doing it for no other reason than he didn't want me to die. There was nothing in it for him.
"Eric? Wait?" I could hardly believe I'd spoken out loud, and that wasn't the first of my actions that evening that I couldn't believe. He turned back to me, that sad little smile still on his face, unchanged. "Thank you."
"You're welcome." Goodness, his voice was just like velvet.
"You know, if anyone asks about it, I'll have to deny it?" He cocked his head at me and raised one eyebrow in a confused gesture.
"I mean, if I let you kiss me." The corners of his mouth turned upwards just a little, but his eyes remained that endless frosty blue. It didn't look like he'd given himself permission to believe that he'd heard me correctly.
I figured, that with everything he was doing for me, the least I could do was give him that, if he thought it was so important. I smiled at him, and nodded, and only then did he come away from the window.
"Just lock the door okay?" I expected him to flash across the room in that vampire blur, but he didn't. He walked to the door at a human pace, turned the bolt, and then walked to me at the same pace. I think he did it for my benefit, and it did make me feel more comfortable.
Standing in front of me, he looked down at my face; him being a good eighteen inches taller than me. He brushed two fingers along my cheek and brought them to rest under my chin, and then he tipped it up and brought his own face to mine. I closed my eyes at that point, maybe because the whole thing was overwhelming, maybe just cause it seemed like the right thing to do. I felt him press his lips against mine, so gently, and then part them, pulling a breath from my mouth. I know he didn't have to breathe, none of them did, but it was another wholly human gesture he gave me, and then he pulled away from me, and let his fingers drop to his side.
I opened my eyes to see his smile again; this time more serene. And not to give myself any unnecessary credit or anything, but he seemed really happy just then. Satisfied, but not in a smug sort of way. It was just innocence, like a child, and it was undeniably charming. He didn't say anything else but walked back to the window, preparing to leave, but I knew I just couldn't let him go, not like that.
"Your cologne smells really nice." It was an odd thing to say, but in those brief moments, pressed into him I had smelled it. He stopped frozen in his tracks; I could see his shoulders tense. I didn't know what I had said wrong, and I tried to qualify my words.
"It reminds me of the ocean. Gran took Jason and I there a few times. I'll always remember it, clean and pure smelling." The look of utter horror in his face shocked me, and I wished desperately that I could read his mind just then, because there was something going on behind those blue eyes, something that looked like it even scared him. Everything after that happened so fast. In a human instant he was back in front of me, arms wrapped around me, lifting me onto Sam's desk, bending back my head and forcing his mouth onto mine. My chest was pressed against his, and I could feel him shudder as his tongue dove into my mouth even as his hands held me tightly. Funnily enough I wasn't scared just then. In fact, if I'm going to be honest here, a part of me did my own trembling, and I let my own tongue dance with his for a few good, passionate moments as I ground my body against his. Only when I absolutely needed to breathe did I pull away from him.
Still wrapped in his arms I looked up at him, and both eyes were rimmed with the blood tears. As I whispered his name, one spilled over and I wiped it away with my thumb. We just kind of held each other for a moment then. I didn't understand what had happened, but I didn't mind that it had happened either.
"You know that was two kisses then, don't you Eric?" I know it was a dumb thing to say, but the tension was getting really hard to bear. He laughed just a little laugh then, and stepped away from me for the final time.
"If I return, I will give it back to you Sookie."
"Please come back Eric."
And then he was gone, and I got the most horrible feeling in my gut that that was the last time I was ever going to see Eric Northman. I looked at the bloodstain on my thumb, and put it in my mouth to draw it off my skin, it tingled. Then, after straightening my clothes I unlocked the door and went back to work, and began waiting for him to come back.