Chapter 12

It was only a short drive to Eric's New Orleans place, on St. Claude Avenue. It was a classic old house, not large, but furnished elegantly with French antiques and heavy chandeliers. Pam offered to make me a drink, but I declined as gracefully as I could. The evening had sapped my energy, and I was relieved when Pam pointed me to a guest room upstairs. I showered and climbed into the big wrought iron bed.

Much later, Eric woke me with his lips on my neck. "Sookie," he whispered. He was kneeling on the bed, straddling me. I raised my arms up to reach around his neck and pull him closer. He still wore his dress shirt and black pants, but he'd discarded the rest of his ensemble. He stretched out above me on top of the covers and rested on his forearms. His mouth was just a few inches from mine.

"Kiss me…" I said sleepily, and he did so with great care before moving his mouth to my neck, where he sucked gently without biting. My hips started to respond to him, and Eric shifted slightly to turn his attentions to my breasts.

"So proud of you, Sookie," he said between kisses. He was unusually languorous.

"When does the sun rise?" I asked, then gasped as his fangs circled my nipple.

"Soon… but we have time." He pulled the bed linens back, and his eyes swept down my body. One of his hands moved lower, and he made a small noise when he felt how ready I was. I pulled him closer so I could kiss him, and two of his fingers slid into me.

"You are sweet," he mused, "even if you say you're not."

I smiled. "You do love me, Eric," I whispered, "even if you won't say it." He gave me a short breath of a laugh, amused.

My hands moved to his shirt, fumbling with the buttons.

"No… no, we'll get to that later. Just come for me, Sookie. Just that, for now…"

With Eric watching me, and his talented fingers between my legs, it wasn't long before I collapsed with a cry, gasping. He'd held me right at the edge for a time, just until the moment that I couldn't stand wanting it any longer, and then he'd pushed me off.

I opened my eyes and stretched lazily. My hand caressed his hips and moved to stroke him. Those pants couldn't be comfortable. He lay back and let me undress him.

I felt so tied to him; he was in me, thrusting hard, and his pleasure was in my head, rolling in like waves on a shore and mixing with mine. It seemed like the most natural thing - the act that would complete us -to bite him hard and drink. He growled loudly when I pierced the skin of his neck with my teeth, and I nearly stopped out of fear that I'd hurt him. Instantly his hand was holding my head against his neck. "Keep going," he said roughly, and I sucked hard. He slammed into me and soon went over the edge with a primal cry.

He rolled over and closed his eyes for a few moments, then turned and looked at me. His eyes seemed to glitter. "You look too fucking beautiful like that," he said, still sounding ragged. I gazed at him. "Lick your lips," he said then, and I did, finding his blood there. With his thumb, he wiped a drop off of my chin.

"I felt like I needed you, that way," I said, trying to explain to both myself and Eric.

He raised himself on an elbow and gave a low, shaky laugh. His neck had already healed.

"You're marvelous," he murmured, "and more bloodthirsty than I'd thought." This sounded like a high compliment.

"Did I take too much?"

"No, darling… just enough." He paused and searched my face, before giving me a wry smile. "Sookie, you might be half-vampire already," he teased. I gave him a look, but felt too contented to hold onto any real anger.

"You still want that?" Of course he did.

"Of course I do… someday… but I want you to want it. I told you I didn't want to force you." His hand rested on my stomach, and I put my hand atop his. Just two lovers in bed, discussing being undead forever.

"You're just gonna try and wear me down until I say yes, aren't you?" I was smirking a little.

"That is my dark plan," he smiled back, "and only someone who was meant to be vampire could have deduced it." I rolled my eyes at him, and he kissed my shoulder.

His grin faded into an expression of tenderness. "Sookie, are you afraid of it? Tell me."

"Any sane person would be afraid of being a vampire, Eric," I said. "Sleeping in dirt, hurting people, hungry for blood… not breathing…."

Eric suppressed a smile when I said "hungry for blood," and nodded. "What else?" he asked softly.

I thought for a moment. "Watching everyone you know die."

"How old are you? Twenty-five? Sookie, you're so young… and you've already seen people you know – and love – die. And you'll see a lot more of that as you get older. It's just life… humans die. Being vampire does not have much to do with it." I thought of my parents, and Gran.

After a while Eric asked, "What else?"

"Does it hurt? Did it hurt when Godric turned you?" I felt a quick hint of sharp physical pain through our bond, before he shut it off.

"Did it hurt when I took your blood at Fangtasia?" he asked softly.

"Only a little, at first…"

He nodded. "It would be like that, for you. You'd lose consciousness until you woke two or three days later. I wouldn't let it go wrong."

"Wouldn't it change what we have?" I laced my fingers through his. "I mean, if I wasn't human, wouldn't it change… who I am?"

It was a long time before he answered. "You'd still be you, Sookie," he finally said, quietly. "Otherwise, I'd never want this for you. And you'd still be my dearest."

"So Pam was… how she is now… as a human, too?" It was hard to believe.

He chuckled. "You mean, was she cold… ruthless?" I nodded.

"Oh yes, she had that in her. She was also mischievous, and rebellious. Smart. Passionate. She is still all of those things." The affection in his voice made me smile. "Of course, she probably picked up some… qualities… from me."

Pam was so like him sometimes. "Why did you turn her?"

"I had been searching for a long time… for the right child. I am very picky, Sookie," he winked at me. "And when I found Pam, I knew it was her. I wanted her, and she wasn't frightened of me…"

"You had sex with her…?" They must have, but I didn't sense any attraction like that between them now.

He nodded. "Before I turned her, and then for many decades afterward."

"Why did you break up?"

Eric looked bemused at my human phrase to describe his past relationship with his progeny. "Some vampires do stay together for centuries, especially a maker and child, but I knew that Pam wanted more… independence. She was strong, ready to leave, and more interested in women than men. But she is still at my side; she's the only vampire I trust, now that Godric's gone."

I thought of Eric and Godric on the roof, and Eric's tears, his heartbreak. It was the first moment that I'd known he had a heart, and could love someone other than himself.

He raised an eyebrow at me. "Have I worn you down yet?"

"Not by a long shot, Eric," I said. "I still like my sunbathing too much."

"With your exotic blood, Sookie, you just might be the first vampire with a tan. Who knows?" He leaned over me and kissed my lips. I opened my mouth under his and kissed him back.

"Who knows," I sighed, and felt him smile.

END

That's it! Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it!

A/N, 9/20/10: This story is the first one that I posted online, so I wasn't sure what to expect, but I really appreciate everyone who signed up for alerts/favorites, and HUGE thanks to those who wrote reviews – they make me smile like an idiot. It was so much fun writing this story, and then the encouraging response has been such a great surprise. I've had some requests for a sequel, and I'm kicking around a few ideas… so I hope to post something new within the next couple months. Feedback is still very welcome, and stay tuned!