Chapter 16 – Declarations
As soon as Sookie walked out of sight I fell into the chair feeling like I was just punched in the gut. How could she walk away? Was I wrong about her? About us? Didn’t she love me too?
I was lost in my own thoughts when I heard Alcide walking over to me. “The doc’s finishing up with the shitbag now. Do you want to call Sookie and have her meet us at the station?”
Do I want to call Sookie? NO! I DON’T want to call Sookie. Sookie needs time to fucking think about whether or not she’s going to crush every hope and dream I’d had for the two of us. After everything that happened this morning I felt like I was on an emotional roller coaster. I had to cut myself off from feeling any of it if I was going to be able to function.
Alcide looked at me questioning, “No? ‘No’ you don’t want to call her, or ‘No’ you don’t want her to meet us at the station?”
“No, I don’t want to call her. You do it.” I gave him her cell phone number and walked into the exam room to avoid any more questions.
When I saw her later at the station I couldn’t look at her. I had to force myself to not think about her because I was afraid of what I might do or say. I bounced back and forth between feeling hurt and feeling angry. At least I could direct my anger at Quinn.
I could tell on the ride to the cabin that Alcide wanted to ask me what was wrong, but thankfully he didn’t. He offered to watch Quinn until the following morning so I could go home and make sure Bubba had enough food and water left out. When I walked into the bedroom I saw that Sookie had made the bed before she left that morning. The same bed we’d just made love in a few hours ago. I started taking my clothes off to take a shower, but when I walked into the closet to throw them in the hamper I saw that she had lined up my shoes. In a perfect row. I couldn’t help it. I leaned against the doorway and slid down to the floor trying to stop the tears from flowing down my face wondering what am I going to do now?
The next two days dragged on and on. The only bright side was that nothing in the cabin reminded me of Sookie. I knew if I had stayed at home I would’ve had a harder time dealing with it all. There was no cell phone reception where we were so I didn’t have to worry about checking my phone every five minutes like I knew I would have otherwise. When Alcide had left to get take-out for us on Tuesday he came back saying that Sookie had sent him a text wanting us to be at the courthouse with Quinn at 8 a.m. Thursday morning so they could go over his testimony before going into the grand jury. When I left for Chow’s funeral the following morning I watched my cell phone as the bars started coming back indicating I had service again. I was crushed when I didn’t have any voicemails or text messages waiting.
At the funeral I caught a glimpse of Sookie here and there, but I made it a point to not look at her. I already felt bad enough and I didn’t want to see her not looking at me. Not caring about me. Not loving me. I was so consumed thinking about how much I missed her and feeling the overwhelming ache in my chest that I couldn’t stop the tears from flowing when the bagpipes started to play.
That night, Alcide and I sat on the porch having a beer after Quinn was down for the night.
Alcide looked at me hard asking, “So, what’s going on?”
I pretended I didn’t know what he was talking about. “I’m drinking a beer. That’s what’s going on.” I hoped I would get away with avoiding this topic all together but he was having none of it.
“You know what I’m talking about. What’s going on with you and Sookie?”
I sighed. “I don’t know what’s going on with me and Sookie. At the hospital, she was upset at all of my recent near-death experiences and said she needed time to think. About us. Then she walked out the door without ever looking back.”
“What’s there to think about? I’ve known you since you were a wet-behind-the-ears rookie. You’re in love with her. I don’t know her that well, but judging from the way she looks at you I’d say she was in love with you too.”
“I thought so too. I almost told her that I loved her right before you called the morning of the shooting. I guess, in hindsight, it was a good thing I didn’t get the chance.”
Alcide’s expression changed to one of incredulity. “Are you kidding me? You should have told her you loved her. Maybe THAT’S what she’s thinking about. We’re in high stress, dangerous careers. It’s a lot for another person to get attached to someone like us. If she doesn’t know how you feel about her it would make sense for her to try to protect herself by backing off.”
How could she not know that I love her? Is that all this is? She’s protecting herself? Alcide sat there quietly letting me work it all through my head. “Do you really think that’s all she’s doing? Protecting herself?”
“Yes dipshit. The way you two looked at each other the night of the chief’s retirement was fucking sickening. Maria-Starr kept saying how ‘beautiful they are together’ and ‘I hope someday someone looks at me that way.’ You two ruined my whole fucking evening.”
Huh. “So Dear Abby, what do you think I should do?”
“Just tell her. Then the ball’s in her court.” He stood up and went back into the cabin leaving me there on the porch by myself.
I started getting worried over the twinges of hope I could feel fluttering inside of me. If it was something as simple as me telling her I loved her to fix this I would hire an airplane to fly over the city towing a banner declaring my love for Sookie Stackhouse for the entire world to see. I’d shout it from the rooftops. I’d take out a full page ad in the newspaper. I, Eric Northman, am in love with Sookie Stackhouse. No one would be left out of the loop, especially her.
I went inside finally feeling better about us for the first time in days.
I made Alcide and Quinn get up and get ready early Thursday morning so we could get to the courthouse about 20 minutes before the 8 a.m. meeting. I knew Sookie was usually early to work and I wanted to get a chance to talk to her before she had to talk to Quinn.
At 10 minutes to 8 Pam Ravenscroft walked up to us and directed us to a conference room. I was starting to wonder whether or not Sookie was coming to the hearing. The DA used the time to read over Quinn’s statement, but as the time crept on she looked at her watch. It was 8:05.
She looked at me asking, “Do you know what’s keeping Sookie this morning? She’s never late.”
She WAS supposed to be here. “No, I haven’t talked to her in a couple of days. I’ve been with him,” and I nodded towards Quinn.
Pam picked up her phone and punched in a number. Her eyebrows furrowed and she said, “Her phone went straight to voicemail. She normally has it on all of the time.” I was starting to get nervous. In all of the time I’d spent with Sookie she ALWAYS had her phone on and even carried around spare batteries so it was always charged.
Pam punched in another number. “Amelia. Have you seen Sookie this morning? Check her office. No, she’s not here. I tried, it went straight to voicemail.” She paused and then said, “Okay, call me once you get there.” She hung up and then spoke to us.
“Amelia is going to check her condo and call me once she gets there. I don’t know where she could be.” She sat there thinking before her eyes turned hard and she glared at me saying, “This doesn’t have something to do with YOU does it? I’d be hard pressed to believe that Sookie would let anything going on between the two of you effect her duties as the ADA, but I can’t think of any other reason she wouldn’t be here right now.”
“No.” It didn’t sound very believable, even to me. She arched her eyebrow like her bullshit meter was going off. “We had a misunderstanding. I think. But she wouldn’t not show up because of it.”
She continued to glare at me in silence until her phone rang. She held the phone to her ear and said, “Ravenscroft.” I watched as her eyes got big and she gasped putting her hand on her chest.
“WHAT?” I yelled jumping out of the chair.
“No, don’t touch anything. Wait there for the police. I’m on my way.” She looked at me with tears in her eyes saying, “When Amelia got to her condo she noticed Sookie’s car was in the parking lot. When Sookie didn’t answer her door she let herself in using the key Sookie gave her and found everything scattered everywhere. Her purse and keys are there. She said there’s a pool of blood just inside the door.”
My heart stopped. I flew out of the courthouse and sped to Sookie’s place getting there in less than 5 minutes. Amelia was waiting just outside her door crying. As soon as she saw me she started shrieking.
“SHE’S NOT HERE! SOMEONE TOOK HER! THEY HURT HER!” I put my arm around her as she cried choking sobs into my chest and peered into the doorway.
There was a dried up pool of blood just inside the doorway about 8 inches in diameter. Nowhere near enough for her to have bled out, but I would’ve considered a drop of blood too much. I would bring down whoever had done this in the most painful way possible.
A few black and whites showed up a minute later and I left Amelia with them. I slipped on a pair of latex gloves and carefully stepped over the blood noticing her keys were lying on the floor by the doorway and walked further into the condo. Someone had gone through everything in the place leaving upturned couch cushions and papers scattered everywhere.
“Oh my God.” I turned to see Alcide walking in behind me. “This isn’t good.”
I had no response. My brain was only capable of thinking ‘FIND SOOKIE NOW! KILL THE BASTARD THAT DID THIS TO HER!’ I walked through the other rooms, finding each one ransacked like the rest. I felt a stab in my chest when I saw her perfect row of shoes had been scattered. I had to stop myself from fixing them knowing we had to wait for the forensics team to go through everything.
I turned to Alcide saying, “Can you go see if any of her neighbors are home? We need to know when the last time was anyone saw her. Call tech and have them dump her home and cell phone records.” We have to find her.
I walked out of Sookie’s condo to talk to Amelia and saw Pam had already shown up too. I asked them both, “When was the last time either of you saw or talked to Sookie?”
Pam answered first. “I saw her in her office when I left last night around 7 o’clock. She said she’d see me in the morning.” She kept shaking her head like she couldn’t believe this was happening.
Amelia’s sobbing had slowed down, but she was still having a hard time breathing. She choked out, “I left at 6 last night and she was in her office. I texted her around 8 to see if she wanted me to come over to talk because she’s been so sad lately, but she texted me back nooo…” Her sobs increased and she wasn’t able to say anything more. She handed me her phone and I scrolled through her messages. Sookie’s actual response had been ‘No. I realize now I messed up big time but I’ll fix it somehow.’
She wanted to fix it. She wanted me. I would give anything in the world right now just to have her safe in my arms again.
I walked back into the condo to keep myself from falling apart by looking over everything again. Alcide walked back in while I was looking over everything in the living room. “Only one of her neighbors is home and they said they haven’t seen her since yesterday morning.”
“What were they looking for?” I wondered out loud. It was obvious they were looking for something, but what?
“I assume she had a computer?”
I looked over to her coffee table where her laptop normally sat. The coffee table was now on its side, but after looking all around I could tell that it was gone. I pointed at the table saying, “Her laptop was normally here. Her briefcase appears to be missing too.” It wasn’t a typical briefcase, but a large leather bag with handles she could throw over her shoulder like a purse. I teased her calling it her ‘Mary Poppins’ bag because that’s what it reminded me of.
I noticed her cordless phone lying on the table and I wandered over and picked it up. I checked her caller ID, but it had been cleared. When I hit the redial button it showed my cell phone number. The last time she called me was the Friday we left for Bon Temps. We’d been together every day since then up until Monday. I hoped to God she hadn’t tried to call me last night and I didn’t have a fucking signal at the cabin. I threw the phone down on the couch frustrated thinking that was a possibility.
I then felt a twinge of guilt for throwing her phone, so I picked it up and put it into its charging station next to the answering machine. It wasn’t blinking that she had any new messages, but it showed a few older ones that hadn’t been deleted yet. I pressed the button and listened. The first few were from Amelia and the time and date stamp was from a couple of weeks ago. Another one was a telemarketer. The next one caught my attention.
“Sookie. I saw you on the news tonight fawning all over some cop. What is the meaning of this? You are mine. I will stop by later on so we can discuss your actions.” The date indicated it was the day I got shot.
Alcide’s eyebrows shot up into his hairline. “Who in the hell is that?”
“Bill, her ex.” Something was nagging at me. I played the message again. When it was through I told Alcide, “There’s something bugging me about this.”
He responded, “Well yeah. It would bug me too if my girlfriend was getting messages like that from some asshat.”
That’s it. The asshat. I played it again saying, “Listen. It’s him. The ASSHAT that called DeCastro. It’s her ex, Bill.”
I could tell when it clicked for him too. “SON OF A BITCH!”
I ran back outside with Alcide on my heels to Pam. I pulled her away from everyone else feeling even more paranoid of the people around us. I told her, “It’s Bill, Sookie’s ex.”
She looked interested, but said, “I know he’s a complete dick, but do you really think he would’ve kidnapped Sookie? Why would he? They’ve been broken up for months.”
“You’re not getting it. BILL is the one we have on tape that called DeCastro about the weapons at Barksdale. It was his phone call that got us the first warrant. I didn’t put it together when I met him in Sookie’s office, but he left a message on her answering machine. I’d know that recorded voice anywhere.”
“Shit!” She immediately called her office only to find out Bill hadn’t shown up to work today. We bolted from Sookie’s condo over to Bill’s apartment kicking in the door once we got there. It was empty. No furniture, no nothing.
I dropped my head into my hands yelling, “FUCK!” I kept pacing because I couldn’t hold still and my actions briefly reminded me of Quinn. Then it hit me. Maybe he took her to DeCastro’s. I looked up at Alcide asking, “What did you do with Quinn?”
“I left him with Clancy. I don’t think we have to worry about him letting Quinn go. I’m more worried that he’s gonna shoot the fucker over Chow.”
“We need to find out where that tunnel access is to DeCastro’s compound. He must’ve taken her there. He’s working for him directly if he’s calling DeCastro himself.”
Alcide got Clancy on the phone and we lucked out that Quinn had memorized the GPS coordinates to the hunting shack. I punched them into mine and we took off.
DeCastro’s compound was on the outskirts of Shreveport. Quinn told Clancy there was an dirt trail off of the highway in between mile markers 11 and 12 on the northbound lane. The brush was somewhat overgrown, but after slowing down some I spotted it and we turned down the lane. It was narrow and we had to drive slower so we wouldn’t hit any of the trees on either side. It was obvious that it didn’t get a lot of use by the looks of it, but it did appear to have been used recently by the broken branches I’d noticed that were still green and leaking moisture. If they’d been older than a week ago the breaks would’ve dried up and turned brown already.
I felt like we were driving forever when we rounded a bend and came to a stop. Just ahead of us was a car that matched the description Compton’s car that we’d gotten from Pam and Amelia. Next to it was a dilapidated shack. It looked like a strong breeze would’ve knocked it down.
We got out of the car and cautiously walked up to his car with our guns out. The sun barely peaked through the canopy of trees and I knew it would be impossible to spot it from the air. I looked into the car and saw that it was empty but there were lines on the ground in the fallen leaves that looked like something or someone had been dragged from the trunk of the car and into the shack. There was blood smeared on the rear bumper. My stomach dropped. Sookie.
We swept our way into the shack, but it was immediately apparent it was empty. The interior consisted of a wooden bench and a couple of camping lanterns sitting on the wooden floor. We went to the back left corner to look for the knot in the wood that Quinn said would be there. Finding it, I hooked my finger inside and pulled up a hidden trapdoor revealing a fixed ladder straight down into the darkness.
Alcide ran back to his car to get flashlights out of the trunk and we made our way down. We moved at a pretty fast clip shining the lights down only a few feet in front of us, practically jogging, but quietly enough that we would be able to hear any noises ahead of us. Going through it reminded me of the Underground Railroad used by the slaves to escape to the north. The walls and ceiling were carved out of the earth and reinforced every ten feet or so by wooden beams. It was maybe 6 feet wide by 6 feet tall, so we had to duck down as we ran. It took us only a few minutes to reach the end.
According to Quinn the tunnel opened up into DeCastro’s basement. Actually he called it a dungeon. There was a cipher lock on the doorknob. It had buttons numbered 1 to 5 and you had to put in the right combination to get it to open. Trying the code Quinn gave us, I internally breathed a sigh of relief when it actually worked.
I slowly turned the knob and pushed the door open just a hair. I listened for a moment and couldn’t hear anyone so we opened it farther and went inside. The door opened into a wine cellar and once we were in I could see that from the inside the door would’ve been hidden behind a large tapestry hanging on the wall. We swept our way around the room and went into the hallway. We could hear voices farther down and as we got closer I peered around the corner. What I saw and heard made me sick.
I slowly woke up feeling like I’d been run over by a truck. Pain was throbbing in my head with every beat of my heart and it felt like it weighed a hundred pounds sitting on top of my shoulders. I tried to move my arms and legs, but couldn’t. Ugh.
“It looks like she’s coming around.”
Huh? Who’s that? I tried to open my eyes but they felt like they were glued shut. Eventually, I got my right eye open all of the way, and then my left eye open halfway. I was blinded by the light at first and quickly shut them again, opening them slower this time giving my eyes time to adjust.
I saw that I was in some sort of room made of cinderblocks. The floor was concrete and there weren’t any windows that I could see. There was a bright light bulb hanging from a cable attached to the ceiling, like the type mechanics use under the hood of a car.
Standing directly in front of me was Felipe DeCastro. I’d seen pictures of him and I was in the courtroom the last time he was indicted. He wasn’t a bad looking man standing at around 5’9″ tall with a lean build and olive skin tone. His black hair had started to turn gray around his temples giving him a distinguished gentleman look. He always wore a custom made suit looking like the perfectly polished business man. But now? He was wearing a black button down shirt with black slacks, and an honest-to-God black cape with a red satin lining attached at the base of his neck that hung down past his waist. WTF? Is he Zorro? I looked him over and didn’t see the mask or sword on him so maybe he was only wearing part of the costume?
“Miss Stackhouse. Welcome to my home.” He held his arms out to his sides in a gesture of southern hospitality. Seriously, WTF? I looked down to see that I was tied to a straight back chair with my arms bound behind me and my legs tied at the ankle to the front legs of the chair. There were splatters of dried blood on my shirt and pants.
A movement to his right caught my attention and I saw Bill leaning against the wall next to the door. Seeing his face triggered my last memories before waking up in this room. He was standing at my door when I opened it to go see Eric. Oh my God! Eric! I remember seeing Bill raising his right hand but nothing after that. I could surmise what must have happened by the blood spatters on my clothes and the throbbing pain in my head.
I looked back at DeCastro. “Where am I? What do you want with me?”
“You’re at my home. Bill was kind enough to bring you to me as a tribute for his previous transgressions.”
“What are you talking about?”
DeCastro looked to Bill and said, “Why don’t you explain? I’m sure she’d rather hear it from you.” His face seemed predatorily eager waiting for Bill to explain.
I looked over at Bill and saw a look of superiority come across his face. “Sookie, Sookie, Sookie. So naïve. So trusting. You see, I was already working for Mr. DeCastro before I ever stepped foot into the DA’s office. I tried to get close to that stupid bitch Ravenscroft, but I don’t possess the necessary equipment to get her attention. Fucking dike. But, there you were. You were close to her, she trusted you, and you were ripe for the picking. So innocent. I couldn’t believe my luck. All it took was a few kind words and a little bit of attention and you spread your legs for me. You’re first! I only needed to keep you close to get the information I needed, but I thought I would train you in the bedroom to my liking as a fringe benefit for me. I must say, I had high hopes for you, but ultimately you could never be what I truly wanted. I had made an error in judgment when I called Mr. DeCastro to tell him about the shipment of weapons due to arrive at Barksdale. I am paying my penance by offering him you.”
I sat there stunned. He was the fucking leak. Everything was a lie? All of it? I knew in the back of my mind that I should be hurt by his confession, but all I felt at the moment was anger. How DARE he use me like that! I had never been more grateful for Eric’s presence in my life than at that very moment. He made me realize what true love is. Without him Bill’s confession would have destroyed me. I glared at him and said, “I know EXACTLY how you feel. Now that I’m with a REAL man, I finally know what it’s like to be satisfied for once.” Asshole!
I guess I should have expected it given the stains on my clothes, but I was still shocked when he stepped forward and backhanded me across my mouth. I felt where my teeth had cut into my lip and I could taste the blood in my mouth. I didn’t give him the satisfaction of making a sound even if I did want to scream out from the pain.
DeCastro laughed out, “My my, you’re a feisty one. So righteous and full of fire. Just like your father. You might want to play a little nicer if you don’t want to end up like him.”
The way he said it made me ask, “What are you talking about? My parents died in a flash flood.”
He laughed again while shaking his head. “No, that’s not exactly how it happened. Let me tell you a little story. You see, when I was younger I had a girlfriend named Thalia. We were in love and she helped me build my empire from the beginning. I trusted her like no other and she was ruthless like none I had ever seen. My perfect match. Later, I noticed her demeanor had changed. She wasn’t as excited about my business and she was brooding all of the time. She finally told me she was pregnant with my child. She wanted me to give up my business saying it was no way to raise a child. Of course I denied her wish. I would not give up my growing empire. I knew I would one day be declared the King and once she was my Queen she would change her mind. Sadly, I was wrong. She became secretive and withdrawn so I had her followed. She was seen approaching your father as he was getting in his car when he left his office for the day. I knew there was only one reason for her to be talking to him. I acted quickly. Decisively. I would not allow her betrayal to stand. I grabbed Thalia as she walked down the street an hour later. I made her admit her betrayal to me. We drove together to your childhood home so I could make her watch as I killed you all, but no one was home. I couldn’t believe my luck when I saw his car on the road ahead of us as we drove back to Shreveport. I hit your father’s car from behind and pushed it over the bridge into the river. The fact that there was a terrible storm raining down helped as well. I read in the papers he died in an accident. You see? The Gods smiled down on me. I am blessed.”
I felt like I couldn’t breathe. My whole history was just re-written by a crazy drug dealer/gun runner/all-around jack-of-all-crimes. Shreveport’s very own version of Kim Jong-il . In the back of my mind I was still in survival mode and knew I couldn’t lose it yet. I took a deep breath and asked, “What happened to Thalia?”
He actually looked sad for a minute. Then his expression became one of a predator again. “I killed her. Her betrayal cost her her life. She begged and pleaded for our unborn child, but what would I want it for. It would be half of her and she was no longer worthy of me.”
Why is he telling me all of this? My heart sank when I realized that with his confession he had no intention of letting me go. “What is it you want from me?” I was surprised that my voice sounded steady even though I was screaming inside.
“I want John Quinn. Even with my many spies throughout the city you’ve kept him hidden from me. You’re a worthier adversary than I initially thought. And I’ve seen his statement to the police. I want the video he has. It’s not in the custody of the police. I can only think you must have it hidden away. It makes no difference to me if he testifies to the grand jury this morning. As long as he’s gone before the trial I have nothing to worry about. I will find a way to get Quinn and once I’ve destroyed the video my worries are over.”
I internally jumped for joy. They didn’t find my hiding spot at home. After I’d left the police station that day I’d driven all over the city, mostly to make sure I wasn’t being followed but also to think about everything going on between Eric and I. I felt ridiculous parking at the mall, walking through it to the other side and taking a cab to the bank but the paranoia over everything going wrong with this case had dug in deep. As of right now, Quinn’s letter and video are sealed up in a zip lock bag buried underneath 5 pounds of flour in a pretty ceramic jar on my kitchen counter.
I guess it was time to press my luck. “Why do you think I would have it?”
I barely had time to flinch before I felt the sharp sting of the back of Bill’s hand across my face again. “Quit fucking around and tell us where it is. We’re the ones asking the questions, not you.”
The look in Bill’s eyes was unnatural, like a monster. There was no hint of the man I’d once thought I’d known. I didn’t know this man. But, I had no doubt this man would kill me. I closed my eyes and thought of Eric as hard as I could focusing on all of the love I had for him and mentally pushing it out into the universe hoping he would feel it somehow. It was the most I could give him now. I knew my time left in this world was very limited and there would be no spoken declarations of love. I was a fool to ever doubt it.
Another sharp blow to the side of my body brought me out of my thoughts. I couldn’t help crying out in pain.
“I can do this all day little girl. The question is can you?” I never hated him more than I did right now.
“Bill,” DeCastro interjected, “maybe you’re using the wrong type of persuasion. This one is still too strong in spirit. You have to break that before you can break her.”
DeCastro walked closer leering down at me. He gave Bill a pointed look before looking back at me. He made sure I was watching him as he slowly unclasped his belt and pulled it free from the loops of his pants. Any hopes I had that he was just going to beat me with his belt disappeared when he dropped it to the floor and started opening the button on his pants.
I gasped out loud and started shaking my head back and forth furiously. They wouldn’t. I couldn’t let myself believe I was about to be raped.
DeCastro went no further and just stood there watching my reaction. Bill decided to add to my horror. “Yes, she needs to be broken. It might take BOTH of us to do it.” He was standing close enough that he was able to press himself against my upper arm and I could feel he was already hard.
I knew if I had eaten anything within the last few days I would’ve lost it all at that very moment. I yelled out, “GET AWAY FROM ME!” and swung the only part of my body that wasn’t restrained. My head made a direct hit to his crotch and he hissed in pain falling back a few steps. He was back on me in another few seconds pulling my head back by my hair and he now had a knife pressed against my throat.
“You fucking bitch. I’ll enjoy draining you of every last drop of blood you have.” I felt him press the tip of the blade into my skin and the trickle of wetness rolling down my neck. I cringed and strained my neck away from him. The odd angle of my head allowed me to see just the bottom left corner of the open doorway. And for a moment, I thought I saw Eric’s face. It looked haunted. I was afraid to blink and lose my wonderful vision of him, but Bill yanked my head back towards him once more.
And then, I heard the most glorious sound. “DROP YOUR WEAPON! I’M WARNING YOU, PUT YOUR HANDS UP RIGHT NOW AND GET AWAY FROM HER!” Eric.
When I felt the blade start to push back into my throat again I thought maybe I was hallucinating and Eric really wasn’t here. Then I heard the gunshot.
I saw Bill drop to the floor and suddenly my head wasn’t being pulled back anymore. Before I could straighten up again Eric was holding me head gently between his hands and I got to look into those beautiful blue eyes once more. He had tears falling down his face and he looked just as relieved as I now felt.
“I love you Eric.” I felt a weight lift from me that I didn’t even know I was carrying.
He leaned forward placing his lips gently onto mine saying, “I love you too Sookie. I was so afraid I was going to lose you. I can’t lose you.”
The next few hours were a flurry of activity. Bill was dead. Eric had shot him in the head. DeCastro was finally in custody and I could’ve sworn every police officer in the department was at his house. Pam and Amelia showed up at the hospital where I was getting checked out. Between Eric and I we filled them in on everything that had happened and I promised to go to the police station to give my statement the next day. The x-rays came back normal and 5 stitches to the side of my head and a bottle full of pain killers later, I was finally released.
Eric hadn’t taken his hand off of me at all since he first touched me at DeCastro’s house. It was like he was afraid I would disappear if he wasn’t holding on to me. If he wasn’t holding my hand, he was kissing the top of my head, or placing his palm on the small of my back. I knew how he felt. He took me back to his house and carried me inside. We hadn’t been talking much, but it wasn’t an uncomfortable silence. It was almost as if we were just absorbing the warmth of the other’s presence. He gingerly placed me on his bed and went into the bathroom to fill the bathtub. He came back out and carefully stripped me of my clothes. His eyes narrowed when he saw the bruises forming where Bill had punched me earlier.
I reached out to touch his cheek and whispered, “I’m okay.” I really was, in every way imaginable. He just nodded and picked me up carrying me to the bathroom and then placing me into the warm water. He washed me from head to toe using the lightest of touches whenever he got near one of my many bumps and bruises. I remembered doing the same for him just two weeks earlier. Two weeks. It seemed like a lifetime ago. The old Sookie would’ve said that it all happened too fast and it wasn’t enough time to know someone well enough to be in love with them. The new Sookie would tell the old Sookie to shut the hell up. Meeting Eric Northman was the best thing that had ever happened to me.
After Eric drained the tub and dried me off he slipped his black S.W.A.T. t-shirt over my head and carried me back to the bed. After he brought me a couple of my pain pills and a glass of water he climbed into the bed with me and carefully wrapped himself around me.
We laid there staring into each other’s eyes for quite a while. I needed to feel him.
He leaned forward and lightly brushed my lips with his. My tongue flickered out and traced his lips before he opened them granting me entrance into his mouth. It was a very sweet and tender kiss, but it still managed to ignite the heat between my thighs. I started running my hand up his arm and over his chest where I traced over each of his muscles and then circling my finger over one of his nipples. He gasped into my mouth and I moved my hand up to hold his head in place while I deepened our kiss. His hands started to roam up my arms but then froze once he touched my chest.
He pulled away slightly asking, “Are you sure you want to do this right now? I know you’re in pain. We can wait until you’re feeling better.”
“Actually, those little pills you fed me must contain a lot of magic because I’m feeling only one kind of pain right now.” I took his hand from my chest and ran it up my thigh and under the shirt I was wearing to exactly where I wanted him. When he felt how wet I already was he let out a low growl and went back to kissing me while running his fingers up and down my slit. He gently pushed two fingers inside of me while rubbing slow circles over my clit. I reached down and grabbed his rock hard length, stroking it up and down at the same speed he was thrusting his fingers into me. The rhythm of my hand faltered as my first orgasm hit me out of nowhere. I was barely coming down from my climactic high when Eric shifted himself so that he was hovering over me keeping all of his body weight on his arms and legs.
I felt him place his tip at my entrance and as he pushed into me he looked into my eyes and whispered, “I love you Sookie Stackhouse.” I felt the tears fall from the corners of my eyes and as I pulled his lips back to mine I whispered, “And I love you Eric Northman” before kissing him with all of the emotion and passion and love of this perfect moment.