After leaving Sookie’s room I walked back into the kitchen on my way to the family room to get those posters off of the walls and out to the garage. Hopefully I’d be able to slip in and out like a ninja with Sookie none the wiser, but the sight of Pam and Alcide still standing there halted my step. No fucking way was I going to let them see me acting like the pussy I seemed to be turning into, so I leveled my gaze from one to the other and said to them both, “Don’t let the door hit you on the ass on your way out.” There was no time to try and be subtle; I needed them gone. There were ninja moves to be made.
Alcide just shook his head, already accustomed to my dick moments, and said with a grin, “I could wait around; see if there’s anything Sookie might need me to do.”
I glared back and hotly retorted, “I can take care of Sookie’s needs. All of them.” Alcide was a big guy, but as the video from the night before had proven, I could take him down with one punch. Maybe I’d hit his right eye this time so he’d have matching shiners.
Alcide just grinned wider and said he’d see me at the studio on Monday morning before leaving. That just left Pam and me in a stare down with her making no moves to leave.
“Don’t you have children to scare or something?” I asked. “It’s Saturday, I’m sure the park is full of them right now.”
Her eyebrow rose up with her ignoring my question completely as she said, “I’m worried you two might kill each other if I leave.”
No, if you leave we might fuck each other.
I started walking towards the foyer hoping she would follow behind so I could just shove her out the door when she wasn’t looking. “We’ll be fine. Hell will freeze over before you move in to referee and besides, if we do kill each other I’m sure you’ll find a way to spin that too.” I could already see the headlines: Eric Northman Fucked to Death. The only killing I had in mind with Sookie was la petite mort – orgasms; lots of them.
While Pam had followed my footsteps, she still seemed unwilling to leave. Operation Seduce Sookie was due to commence, but those posters needed to go first. The only movement Pam made was a slight smirk appearing on her face. Frustrated, I finally asked, “What Pam?”
“You’re smitten,” she replied.
“I am NOT smitten,” I denied.
She smiled bigger, clearly enjoying my unease from her observations, and said, “You are. But I think it’s a good thing. Maybe her magic pussy can keep you on the straight and narrow.”
My unease was quickly morphing into anger and made me deny every feeling Sookie had managed to produce in me in the few short hours I’d known her; not to mention the fact that I couldn’t remember if her pussy was magical or not. “I want to FUCK her Pam; nothing more. You and Alcide want to fuck her too, so it’s not like I’m the only one.”
Her eyebrow quirked up again as she asked, “So you wouldn’t mind sharing?”
“NO!” Just the thought of either one of them, or ANYONE else, touching her made me see red. I could see the ‘I told you so’ expression on Pam’s face, so I justified my outburst by saying, “If I’m not allowed to fuck anyone else for a year, than neither is she.”
Pam’s tiny chuckle seemed to echo too loudly off of the marble floors before she finally started moving towards the front door. “You need to keep practicing that line if you want it to sound believable.” When I just glared at her in silence she finally put her hand on the door saying, “I’ll be back tomorrow afternoon with some rings for you and Sookie to choose from. The paparazzi will be waiting for you on Rodeo Drive, since you told them you’d be taking her there, and I don’t think she’ll be up for another spectacle so soon.” Without another word, she left the house, with me hauling ass back to the family room.
I wasn’t sure how much time had passed since leaving Sookie’s room and I ripped all four of the framed posters down, literally running with them out to the garage. Even with my longer arm span the size of them, and the fact I was carrying four of them, made me work up a sweat trying to maneuver them through the doors. I had to shift some boxes around to hide them behind, until I could get them out of the house entirely, the whole time silently cursing myself for doing it at all.
Why was I going through so much effort? So what if she saw them; she had already let me know exactly what she thought of the women I’d bedded, earlier that morning, when she was probably still dripping remnants of me from the night before. It wasn’t like she was under the assumption I had led the life of a saint, so why was I trying to hide my past?
My actions stilled as I tried to sort through it all. While her mouth could lead you to believe she was a full time sailor, she couldn’t hide the southern belle that lived inside of her for very long. I found her to be confusing; irritating; frustrating; but also beautiful; sweet; caring; sexy. I had become so accustomed to the women around me practically falling down at my feet in their attempts to get me to notice them, stroking my ego among other things, that I found her willingness to stand up to me quite refreshing. I knew she found me attractive, I wasn’t blind, but it didn’t deter her in the least from giving it to me with both barrels.
She was a shotgun named Sookie.
The fact remained that I did want to fuck Sookie and it would take longer than one day to figure her out, or how I felt about it all, so I gave up for the time being and ran back into the family room to make sure I hadn’t missed anything. I didn’t realize she was standing there watching me until it was too late, but I tried to seem like nothing was amiss, making small talk while my eyes darted around the room. It was apparent I was no ninja because she asked me what I was looking for and didn’t appear to buy my lame ass excuse.
It felt like it was hotter than Satan’s balls after running around and shoving boxes aside in the garage, so I used the front of my shirt to wipe the sweat from my face while I waited for Sookie to call me out on my lie, having already learned that she wasn’t the type to hold back whatever it was she was thinking. I may have taken longer than necessary, hiding behind my shirt, until I finally pulled my face free and looked over seeing Sookie staring at my chest and abs with her mouth slightly open. It was the same expression she’d worn that morning when I walked into the room shirtless and I filed another tidbit about Sookie away for future reference; if I want to distract her, remove my shirt.
She wasn’t blushing like earlier; she was flushed with her hand fanning at her chest and neck like a preacher’s daughter having wicked thoughts in church on a hot Sunday afternoon. Sookie seemed completely unaware of what she was doing, or that I was watching her, so I finally asked, “Are you hot?”
She was hot enough, literally and figuratively, that Al Gore could blame her for global warming and I couldn’t help undressing her with my eyes wishing I could remember the sight of her naked, but she denied it and asked about Alcide and Pam instead. Just hearing his name on her lips made me want to hit him in the balls the next time I saw him and was like a bucket of ice water being thrown on me, temporarily putting a halt to Operation Seduce Sookie.
She must have been ravenous because after her stomach growled she ran into the kitchen and I followed behind seeing her fruitlessly searching through the cabinets and refrigerator that I already knew were bare. I felt bad, another new sensation, that I didn’t have anything in the house for her to eat and was dumbfounded when she began making a grocery list. I knew normal people cooked the majority of their meals, but my father wasn’t normal even in that sense of the word, so I grew up eating out or ordering in with the occasional frozen dinner thrown into the mix. When she asked me what types of foods I liked to eat I was stuck trying to remember if I’d ever even had a home cooked meal.
Did Pop Tarts count?
I glanced at the list she’d already started, seeing things like chicken, pork chops, potatoes, and onions, and didn’t think they did. I wondered why she would go through all of that trouble to cook for me when only thirty minutes earlier she was ready to walk out the door. I knew on some level it had to do with her grandmother, but a part of me was wary.
Was she doing it to be nice or did she have her own end game?
Maybe she had her own battle plans dubbed Operation Seduce Eric with her first move being trying to lure me in by acting like ‘good wife’ and cooking for her husband. Now that she’d seen my house, maybe she had decided that she could get used to living this way and was no longer in a hurry to leave. Only time would tell, but I couldn’t afford to let my guard down. It seemed like everyone in my life wanted to use me for one thing or another, so why would she be any different?
I’d still fuck her though.
I stared down at her hands as she continued writing the list and noticed the plain gold wedding band she now wore. It couldn’t have cost much and the red heart sat above the band entirely. Sookie said she didn’t mind, nor did she mention my promise to take her ring shopping on Rodeo Drive, but if she did have plans to use me for my money, she might just be waiting for the right time. The true test would be when Pam showed up the next day with rings for her to choose from. If she chose the biggest of the bunch I would know she was just like everyone else.
After I ordered our dinner (extra fortune cookies?), Sookie said she was going to change the sheets on her bed so I decided to take another shower since I still felt sticky with sweat. By the time I got out and walked back into the kitchen I saw she’d already set up plates and silverware on the breakfast island in preparation for our dinner. It looked odd sitting there because I always ate out of the container the food came in while sitting on the couch watching TV, but I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to draw any attention to the gaping spots on the walls from the missing posters.
Sookie came in carrying the sheets that had been on her bed asking, “Do you have any laundry that needs to be done? I’m going to wash these, but it would be a waste to do just half a load.”
I’m sure I looked at her like she had three heads saying, “Sookie, you don’t have to do my laundry. You don’t even have to do your own. I have a maid service that comes in on Wednesdays that takes care of that and the house so you can just leave them in the hamper.”
She looked back at me like I had three heads saying, “That’s ridiculous! There are only the two of us living here, so why would we need someone to come in to clean?”
Maybe she had four heads. “Why not?”
From her look, I must have four heads too. “Because it’s a waste of money!”
Irritating Sookie was back it seemed. “It’s money well spent because I’m sure as hell not doing it and it’s my money; end of discussion.”
I could practically see the steam shooting out of her ears before she snapped, “You did not just ‘end of discussion’ me.”
The doorbell rang a second later and I stood up grabbing my wallet and walked out saying, “Yes, I did.”
I strode to the front door muttering under my breath over how infuriating she could be and paid the delivery guy for our food before heading back into the kitchen with the bags. I plopped them down on the counter and met her eyes, glare for glare, waiting for her to go off on me again. Instead she surprised me by taking the bags and spreading out the containers in front of our plates. She glanced at the receipt attached to one of the bags and pulled some cash out of her purse, laying it down on top of my wallet.
“What’s that?” I asked.
“Money,” she replied, infusing her voice like I rode the little bus to school.
I rolled my eyes wondering if I could last a whole year like this and replying, “I know. What’s it for?”
“For my half of dinner.” She refused to look at me and just started filling her plate with food.
I didn’t know what to say after that. I was always the one to pay for, well, everything so her just assuming that she had to pay for half of our meal threw me and dampened my anger from moments before.
“Sookie, you don’t have to pay for your half of our dinner.” She still refused to look at me and instead just stared at her plate without touching it. I tried to lighten the mood saying, “Isn’t it the husband’s job to provide for their wife?”
She continued to stare at her plate of untouched food while chewing on her bottom lip before she took a deep breath and said, “Listen Eric. This is all a bit overwhelming for me and to be honest, I’m not used to not doing things for myself.” She looked up at me before sweeping her hands out in front of her and continued, “This house; the way you live; is like nothing that I’ve ever experienced before and I don’t know how to act. I’m used to earning my own way and I already know that I couldn’t even afford to pay for the utilities on a house like this much less pay you for half of your mortgage.”
I could see the tears welling in her eyes and they completely doused whatever anger I was still holding onto when I interrupted her saying, “Sookie, I don’t expect or want you to pay for anything while you’re living here. I own the house free and clear so there’s no mortgage.”
“But I won’t feel right living here for free, so the only way I’ll be okay with staying here is if I pay for the groceries and do all of the cooking and cleaning in exchange.”
“What? No! Sookie, I have more money than even Pam could spend so it’s no hardship for me to have you living here.” In the back of my mind I wondered if this was part of her plan to lure me in, but from the stray tears falling from her eyes, I didn’t think so.
“Well then I can’t stay here Eric,” she replied, standing up and leaving her untouched food on the counter to walk out.
I grabbed her arm, halting her departure, and asked, “You would really leave if I didn’t let you pay your own way? What about your grandmother?”
She stared back at me and said with conviction, “My Gran would rather live with the shame that I had foolishly gotten married on a drunken binge to a man I didn’t even know than to know I allowed myself to be a kept woman.”
Playing poker had really made me attuned to people’s body language and I could normally spot a bluff a mile away. Sookie wasn’t bluffing.
“I pay for the groceries, but I’ll cancel the cleaning service,” I offered. It helped when I pictured Sookie wearing a French maid costume bent over the coffee table waving a feather duster around.
“I pay for half of the groceries and you cancel the cleaning service,” she countered.
Maybe I could hide her purse when we went shopping the next day. “Fine,” I agreed.
We sat and ate in silence, mostly. There were no words spoken between us, but the moans coming from Sookie as she ate were making my jeans uncomfortably tight. I wondered if she was doing it on purpose, but whenever I glanced at her she seemed oblivious about it all. She’d filled her plate and I was pleasantly surprised to see that she wasn’t shy about eating it all. I was used to women that considered a Tic Tac a full meal, so it was nice to see she wasn’t like them.
She was nothing like them.
I was surprised again when she got up and started clearing away the leftovers and loading the dishwasher with our dirty plates. I would have just left them in the sink for the cleaning service, but I guess Sookie was in charge of that now. She found the cleaning supplies underneath the sink and began wiping everything down while trying to stifle her yawns that were becoming more frequent.
When she deemed everything, “Done!” She followed up with, “I think I’m going to get some sleep. It’s been a long day.”
I didn’t really want her to leave me just yet, but since I hadn’t exactly been talking her ear off there was nothing for me to say other than, “Okay. I’ll see you in the morning.”
She smiled at me and I felt better seeing it reach her eyes as she said, “Goodnight Eric.”
“Goodnight Sookie.” My eyes stayed on her retreating form until I could no longer see her while I replayed everything in my mind. Everything about her confused me and I was left trying to figure it all out. After a while I decided that I would just have to adopt a ‘wait and see’ approach, but I would still move forward with Operation Seduce Sookie in the meantime.
On that front, I stood up and headed back out to the garage to take the posters from their frames so I could put them through the shredder now that I had the time and made a mental note to remember to hide her purse before going to bed.