I couldn’t seem to take my eyes off of Sookie during the game, wishing like hell I’d cancelled the whole fucking thing, so we could be alone. She was only a few feet away and yet both the upper and lower halves of my body were aching over the ten foot distance between us, albeit for entirely different reasons. I almost asked her to come and sit on my lap, but I knew that would only make things worse because I doubted she’d agree to grind herself on top of me in front of guests while I snuggled against her like the needy little bitch she’d turned me into.
The longer we sat there, the more frustrated I became, throwing hand after hand wanting the game to end early, but when I saw her quietly stand and leave the room I knew I really had no other choice than to let the night progress normally and concentrated on the cards in my hand.
“Sookie seems really nice,” Tray said once she’d left the room. “She’s nothing like how Quinn described.”
My cards were forgotten again as I looked up asking, “What do you mean?”
He shrugged his shoulders saying, “Whenever anyone would bring up the fact they were engaged when he was making a play for another woman, he’d say that she wasn’t very attentive. Selfish.” A smile came on his lips when he looked back at me and said, “It must have been just him because she certainly seems to pay you a lot of attention.”
I had to consciously keep my fingers from crushing the cards in my hand and tried to end the conversation on Quinn saying, “He’s a dick and didn’t deserve someone like her,” before throwing a few chips into the pile, raising the stakes, and pretending to focus back on the game. I had an entire litany of examples of how Sookie wasn’t selfish at all, but I kept them to myself. The last thing I needed was for Tray to be fawning all over Sookie; Alcide was bad enough.
Bill folded his hand and got up saying he needed to use the bathroom before leaving the room. Sookie’s odd reaction to him when he’d first arrived didn’t dawn on me again until he’d been gone for a few minutes and I suddenly stood up, leaving the room and seeking her out. I could hear her voice as I walked through the room where I’d chased her around the pool table and as I got closer to the kitchen, I could hear her saying something about cookies and calling her Mrs. Northman.
Did he go for one of the cherry cookies she’d made without asking first?
When I reached the doorway I could see Sookie standing over Bill’s balled up form on the floor and knew whatever had went down had nothing to do with cookies and asked, “WHAT IN THE HELL IS GOING ON?”
My instincts to protect her were screaming at me she was in danger, but other than Sookie being startled hearing my voice she seemed fine. I felt the others surround me on both sides, but I didn’t spare them a look since my eyes were stuck on Sookie and Bill.
The danger was in front of me, not behind me and I knew whatever it was, they had my back.
Sookie fidgeted where she stood obviously uncomfortable, although I didn’t know from what, and she looked down at Bill before meeting my eyes again saying, “He tripped?”
It was the same line she’d told me she used after putting Dawn on the floor, so I knew Bill must have done something pretty bad to incur her wrath. I stepped into the room with my eyes quickly assessing her physical state before pulling her away from him and tucking her behind me as I loomed over his body gritting out through my teeth to him, “What. Did. You. Do?”
I could see that he was in pain and from the way he was hiding his balls like it was Colonel Sanders’ secret recipe, I knew where Sookie’s aim had struck. It only made me angrier knowing she must have felt really threatened to go for his balls and I had a hard time not finishing the job for her when he finally sputtered out, “Nuh…nothing!”
The pain on his face was the most expression I’d ever seen him wear, but his acting skills were failing him at the moment because he looked guilty as fuck and I yelled, “BULLSHIT! What did you do you piece of shit?”
I pulled my leg back intent on kicking him when I felt Sookie’s arms wrap around me from behind with her wrapping her right leg around my own, keeping it from flying forward, as she said, “I’m fine, really. I just think maybe he had a little too much to drink.”
Recalling what turned out to be our wedding video and how much I’d been groping Sookie after having too much to drink made me see red and my body tensed with even more rage as I yelled, “DID YOU PUT YOUR HANDS ON MY WIFE?” I hadn’t paid any attention to how much Bill had had to drink and he’d never been one to overindulge in my presence, but I didn’t care. If he touched her for any reason I’d kill him.
The others had formed a circle around Bill, looking just as pissed as I sounded, and I felt Sookie scale my body and latch onto me in a bear hug from behind with both of her arms and legs wrapped around me as she tried to soothe the beast threatening to explode from within by saying, “He didn’t touch me. I swear!”
Bill said nothing and shook his head agreeing with her testimony, but I still wasn’t convinced. I pulled on Sookie’s small frame until she loosened her grip enough for me to pull her to my front and looked into her eyes, softening my tone, and asking, “What did he do? Don’t give me that bullshit that he tripped.”
Sookie cupped each of her hands on both sides of my face attempting to calm me down more before leaning forward and placing a soft kiss on my lips. I tried to fight against her magical powers to pacify me, but it was useless. I was putty in her hands. When my body relaxed underneath her she pulled back looking at me pleadingly and asking, “Can I tell you once our guests leave?”
My eyes never left hers when I said, “Leave,” to the others still present in the room.
I could tell she was annoyed by my rudeness from the irritated look on her face as she fought her way free from my grasp, now that my fury was contained, and she turned to face the guys saying, “I’m sorry for ruining your night.”
Alcide was roughly pulling Bill to his feet, even though his body was still unable to completely straighten out, and I smiled watching Tray kick Bill’s feet out from under him making him topple back down to the floor with a yelp as he muttered, “Asshole. I never did like you.”
That made two of us.
Sookie continued to apologize to everyone while they continued to reassure her it was okay as I silently followed them all and watched them file out the front door. When we were finally alone again I wasted no time in pulling her to me where she belonged and said, “Tell me.” I’d had to fight every instinct I had allowing Bill to leave before knowing what had happened and comforted myself in the knowledge I could always beat his ass the following day when Sookie wouldn’t be there to witness it all.
“Can we at least go and sit down first?” she asked with her face pressed against my chest.
I was tired of her stall tactics, but it appeared I could refuse her nothing because I picked her up and carried her into the family room, placing her in my lap as I sat down on the couch. She turned her body to straddle mine as she faced me and I looked back at her waiting for her to start talking. It showed how much I wanted to know the details of what really happened between them since it was the first time we’d ever been in that position when I was more interested in what she had to say versus how her body felt on top of mine.
“He said he wanted to get to know me better,” she finally said.
“And?” My fists clenched at my sides hearing his dumbass pick-up line, but I knew there was more to the story.
She sighed before adding, “I told him there wasn’t much to say and that you led a more exciting life.” When I didn’t offer any response, she continued, “He asked me more or less if that was the reason why I was with you. He asked if fame and money turned me on.” She tried to lighten my ever darkening mood by smiling and adding, “You already know how I feel about be called a gold digger.”
No, I knew how she felt about being called a gold digging whore which is exactly what it sounded like Compton had called her. If she hadn’t been sitting on my lap I knew I would have bolted from the couch and gone in search of him, hell bent on killing him. She must have read it in my eyes because she dug her knees into the couch on either side of me, trapping my legs between hers, with her hands gripping the cushion behind my shoulders. Her determination to keep me from doing anything made me ask, “Why are you minimizing it all?” It made me remember her earlier reaction to seeing him and I added, “Did you already know him?”
“No?” she said unconvincingly. “I must have recognized him from watching your show last night, but I really didn’t notice anyone but you on stage.” She blushed a little before continuing, “He just gave me the heebie jeebies as soon as he walked in tonight and they never went away. Something about him screams ‘Stranger Danger’.”
Still confused, I asked, “So then why didn’t you say something? You said he ‘tripped’. Why did you let him leave without telling me what really happened first? Why didn’t you let me protect you?”
“I didn’t know if he was a close friend of yours and I didn’t want to spoil your party.”
The anger within me was rising again hearing her come out and say she didn’t feel safe with him there and yet she’d said nothing. It was like she had a complete disregard for own personal wellbeing. Just another example of not only how unselfish she was, but foolish too.
“Do you think I give a fuck about some poker party when you’re being attacked in the next room, friend or not? Why didn’t you yell for me? What the fuck were you thinking?”
I didn’t realize how hard I was gripping her hips until she said, “Ouch!” and tried to push my hands away. I felt bad thinking I’d probably just reinforced the bruises on her skin that had been healing up until then, but I was still too upset to really be bothered by it at the moment. She tried to jerk herself free from my lap, but I refused to let her go even as she spouted, “Let me go!”
“NO! Tell me why you didn’t say anything? Why didn’t you call out for me?”
Her entire face flushed red in anger as she redoubled her efforts to stand with me finally letting her go or else I risked hurting her again. As soon as she was on her feet she looked back at me saying, “Because there was no need! I can take care of myself! In case it’s escaped your attention, I’m pretty self-sufficient, not a damsel in distress that needs rescuing like in some fairytale! I didn’t back down from Pam, your father, Turmeric or Spawn and I didn’t need you to save me from a creep like Bill Compton!”
“That’s complete bullshit!” I yelled back now on my feet and towering over her. I had a good ten inches in height over her, but to her credit she didn’t back down at all. If anything, she leaned in closer completely unafraid of my tirade, but then we both knew I would never hurt her. At least I hoped she knew. “He’s bigger and stronger than you! What if he hurt you before I could get to you?”
“He didn’t!” she yelled. “Did you not see him rolling around on the floor trying not to puke up his future demon seeds?”
“You were lucky!” I yelled back. “What about the next time? Why can’t you just admit it was a stupid fucking move on your part?”
The sharp intake of air in through her mouth and the intensifying of her glare let me know I’d crossed the line, but before I could even think about my next move, good or bad, she took a step back and held her hands up in front of her body declaring, “I can’t talk to you when you’re this full of testosterone. We can try again in the morning after you’ve calmed down.” I managed to keep my mouth shut before I could make it any worse and watched as she turned on her heel walking out of the room with a harsh, “Goodnight Eric.”
It turned out I was still capable of making noises even with my mouth clamped shut because I let out a frustrated roar as I flopped back onto the couch wondering what the fuck just happened and trying to figure out when our evening all fell apart.