I rummaged through my closet looking for something to wear. The look I was going for was ‘sexy-but-classy/practical-but-beautiful’ and I wasn’t having any luck. My best friend Amelia’s father had bid on a cooking lesson with the famed Chef Eric Northman that was auctioned off for charity. I’d been to his restaurant Valhalla once and loved the food but I couldn’t afford to go regularly on my elementary school music teacher’s salary. Amelia’s dad only made his bid as a tax write-off and gave the lesson to Amelia. She knew how much I liked the food there, as well as the huge fan girl crush I had for the chef, so she gave it to me.
I could out-cook anyone in a kitchen, having been taught by my Gran, and I was always the person in charge of preparing the food whenever there was a get together. But, I thought it would be nice to learn to prepare something other than down home southern comfort food and it would be even nicer to be taught by him. I didn’t want to act like a dithering fool around him and who knows? Maybe I’d be able to impress him with my culinary skills.
I finally settled on a flattering red sundress that hugged my curves, but not in a slutty way, while it accentuated my tan. I pulled a headband over my hair to keep it out of my face and curled the ends a little so they had some extra bounce. A little bit of mascara and lip gloss completed the look and I headed to Shreveport. I was so nervous about meeting him that the hour long drive seemed to take only minutes because before I knew it I was pulling into the parking lot. It was 1 o’clock on a Monday afternoon and the restaurant was closed. I’d taken a personal day off from work just to be here and I couldn’t think of a better way of spending 8 vacation hours.
I could feel my heart pounding in my chest as I walked towards the door and I made sure to wipe my sweaty palms on my skirt before I knocked. Moments later the door swung open and there he stood. Like my own personal fantasy come true. He was even better looking in person and taller than I expected too. His long blond hair was gathered at the nape of his neck and he wore a traditional white chef’s coat with knotted cloth buttons. There was black piping on the pockets, collar, cuffs and facing as well as the Valhalla logo embroidered over his left side pocket and he wore solid black pants underneath. His eyes were a darker blue than mine and his teeth were gleaming white and perfectly straight with soft looking, kissable lips surrounding them. I was staring right at them and while I could see them moving as if he was talking I couldn’t hear anything but the sound of my blood rushing through my veins and my thundering heartbeat.
I closed my eyes willing my heart rate to slow down and when I could hear again I finally opened them once more only to see him looking at me like he was concerned. Great! I haven’t even said two words to him yet and he thinks I’m an idiot! I plastered on my fake smile and thrust my hand in front of me saying, “Hi! I’m Sookie Stackhouse! I’m here for the cooking lesson!” Oh good, now I sound like a cheerleader at homecoming that’s forgotten to take her ADHD meds!
I woke up already dreading the day. I don’t know what I was thinking by offering up a cooking class to auction off for charity. I should’ve saved myself the hassle and just donated myself. The only people that could’ve afforded the $10,000 they paid for the lesson could certainly afford to hire a cook for themselves and never have to step one foot into the kitchen.
I dragged myself into the shower and once I was done I took my cup of coffee and sat at my mother’s baby grand piano. She’d been a concert pianist and I’d inherited it after she died. I could’ve gone to Julliard and then followed in her footsteps, God knows I played well enough, but I was more passionate about cooking which was another love I’d learned from my mother. I could immerse myself within a kitchen and stay there for hours. I found it cathartic, while my family and friends called it me being anti-social. It was a good thing I didn’t care what they thought.
I ran my fingers over the keys, playing bits and pieces of Bach and Mozart before I couldn’t put it off any longer and drove to the restaurant. I’d decided to have a couple of options and let them choose whichever one they wanted to make. I already planned on being the one to have to do all of the food prep because I doubted they would want to get their hands dirty.
I was busy slicing lemons into wedges when I heard the knock on the front door. Cleaning my hands on a dish towel as I walked, I opened the door to see the most beautiful girl I’d ever seen. She was wearing a fitted red sundress that hugged her curvaceous body like a glove and her long blond hair was pulled back with a headband. It took me a moment before I could find the words that had been lodged in my throat.
“Good morning. I take it you’re here for the charity cooking lesson?” I asked. Her features seemed frozen as she stared at me even as her chest was rising and falling at a fast pace. I got concerned when she closed her eyes fearing she might hyperventilate and pass out before I could even find out what her name was. I became more concerned when she opened her eyes and a crazy smile came on her lips as she stuck out her hand out saying, “HiI’mSookieStackhouseI’mhereforthecookinglesson!” I hoped she was just nervous and not actually crazy so I grasped her tiny hand into mine feeling a zing run up my arm and spread like a wildfire throughout my body as soon as we touched.
“Eric.” I couldn’t form any other words. WTF is wrong with me? I felt nervous and I don’t DO nervous. It’s not in my vocabulary. I’m an intimidating, crass, overbearing, my-way-or-the-highway type of guy. But this little blond haired blue eyed girl in a red sundress and headband had me internally tripping all over myself.
I don’t know how long we stood there but I eventually noticed I was still holding onto her hand and one or both of us had sweaty palms. I was pretty sure it was me. Shaking off my sudden case of STUPID, I released her hand and led her into the kitchen. I turned to show her where she could put her things and found her only inches away. I was instantly caught up in her scent which was a mixture of the sun and honeysuckle. I hoped she wasn’t married or in a relationship and gave her one of my chef coats to wear just so I’d be able to smell her scent again later on even if I felt a little pathetic because of it.
I couldn’t help deeply inhaling the fabric of Eric’s chef coat. I’d followed behind him into the kitchen in the wake of his scent. I couldn’t quite identify it but Irish Spring soap was definitely an ingredient and it was absolutely wonderful. I was sure if he could bottle the scent he’d make millions. The coat was way too big for me but I didn’t care in the least and secretly wondered if he’d let me keep it as I rolled up the sleeves.
Once I was ready I looked up at Eric and saw him staring back at me. I did my best to maintain my non-fan girl composure and waited for him to say something. I guessed he was waiting for me to start so I asked, “What will we be making today?” and smiled with what I hoped wasn’t my Crazy Sookie smile.
He shook his head before replying, “Well Mrs. Stackhouse I was thinking of showing you how to make Chicken with Tangerine, Honey and Chipotle Glaze if you think you’d like that?”
It took all of my willpower to not interrupt him but as soon as he was done speaking I blurted out, “Oh, I’m not married and please, call me Sookie.” My heart skipped a beat when he seemed pleased by my remark with a small smile on his lips. He started gathering the ingredients and placed them in front of us and handed me a tangerine instructing me to grate the peel. My nerves were making my hands shake and I accidentally cut my finger on the grater.
Eric took my hand to inspect my wound and cleaned it up before placing a band-aid over the cut. He then took out another grater and set it in front of me before he placed the other one in a sink. I was just about to start grating the peel when I felt him come to stand directly behind me. He wrapped each of his arms around my body placing each of his hands over mine while saying, “Here, if you place your hands like this and push down you’ll have more grated peel than grated fingers.”
I could feel his breath in my ear as he spoke and I involuntarily leaned back into him becoming engulfed by his body. I held my breath and waited to see if he’d pull back but he only leaned forward more while we continued to grate the tangerine peel together. His breaths were long as if he was inhaling deeply and I wondered if he liked my scent as much as I liked his.
I almost let out an audible whimper when he let go of my hands and stepped to my side to start on the next ingredient. I was trying to figure out a way to get him to touch me some more when he asked, “Do you cook a lot at home?” I mentally crossed my fingers and said a silent apology to God when I fudged the truth answering, “Oh no. I can barely boil water.” Now get over here and touch me, I mean, show me some more! And he did!
We spent the next hour preparing the chicken with Eric showing me how to chop and mince various ingredients that I could’ve done on my own in my sleep, but it was oh so very nice to have him helping me. The dish had to be refrigerated for 2 hours and Eric helped me make a dessert called Grapefruit-Campari Granita with Vanilla Whipped-Cream. While we made the dessert I’d explained to Eric how Amelia’s dad had won the lesson and that she’d given it to me. I figured he’d assume it was because I couldn’t boil water and I let him keep making that assumption instead of telling him that it was really because I had a crush on him.
He’d asked if I’d ever been to his restaurant before and I told him I had, but that it was a little out of my price range to eat there on a regular basis. When he asked what I did for a living, I told him that I was a music teacher at the elementary school and a huge smile lit up his face.
By the time we’d finished the dessert and it was placed into the freezer, the chicken was ready to be cooked. It only took twenty minutes to grill and he served it with grilled asparagus and brown rice and as soon as I took the first bite I closed my eyes and moaned in pleasure at the taste. I was startled when I heard Eric’s fork fall back onto his plate and opened my eyes to see him staring at me with his mouth slightly opened.
When he noticed that I’d stopped eating and was looking at him he quickly picked up his fork and shoveled some food in without speaking. I was feeling really sad at the thought I had to leave once the dessert was done and I’d helped him clean up the kitchen. He hadn’t said anything about giving me the chef’s coat so I reluctantly took it off and placed it on a chair. Eric walked me to the door and we stood there just staring at each other.
I didn’t want her to leave. I was trying to take as much time as possible while we cooked and later when we ate, but it seemed to just fly by and before I knew it she was standing at the door about to leave. I felt like a pimply faced teenager all over again feeling nervous about the girl in front of me and couldn’t believe what I was about to do.
“I was thinking, you said you’re a music teacher, right?” She nodded her head so I continued, “What do you think about giving me piano lessons once a week and in return I’ll give you cooking lessons?”
“OKAY!” she agreed enthusiastically. “But when would you have time? I work school hours, obviously, so I wouldn’t be able to do it until after school or on the weekends.”
“The restaurant is closed Mondays so how about 5 o’clock every Monday? I could teach you a different meal and while it cooks you can give me a piano lesson?”
I watched as her eyes traveled around the restaurant before she asked, “Do you have a piano here?”
I hoped and prayed it wouldn’t be a deal-breaker when I said, “No. I was thinking we could do it at my place.” Her eyebrows shot up into her hairline and I realized how that might’ve sounded so I quickly followed up with, “The lessons. We could do the lessons at my place. I have a piano at home and we could cook in my kitchen. Then we can eat whatever it is we prepared afterwards.”
My heart warmed when she smiled a genuine smile and said, “I’d love to.”
We exchanged phone numbers and I gave her my address and we agreed to meet the following Monday at my house at 5. I couldn’t stop thinking about her all week long. I’d taken the chef coat she’d worn home with me and it was currently residing on my bed next to my pillow so I could smell her when I first woke up in the morning and again before I fall asleep at night. It was starting to lose its potency so I planned on washing it every Monday morning and having her wear it every Monday evening to keep it fresh. I was pathetic.
I was so pathetic that I racked my brain for a reason to call her and dialed her number as soon as I’d thought of one. When it went to her voicemail I smacked myself in the head realizing that it was later in the morning and she was working. Since it had rang before going to voicemail I had to leave her a message so she wouldn’t see just a missed call from me. I asked her the lame question I could think of to call her with, “Do you have any food allergies?” and waited for her to call me back.
The restaurant was pretty busy and I didn’t hear my cell phone ringing in my pocket so I was surprised when I checked it later and saw I had a new voicemail. I was both happy and sad when I heard her voice but kept the message so I could listen to it whenever I wanted. She said she wasn’t allergic to anything but she hadn’t asked me any questions so I didn’t have a reason to call her back. I had erotic dreams of her every night waking up each morning more frustrated than the last. I knew I’d been scaring the employees because they gave me a wide berth at the restaurant and I moped around the rest of the week until it was finally Monday again.
I was nervous driving over to Eric’s house but not as bad as I had been the week before. I’d worn another summer dress that buttoned up the front along with high heels and a little make-up pretending that this was a date, even though I knew it wasn’t. When I pulled into his driveway I was impressed by the view before me. He lived in a suburb made up of the wealthier residents of Shreveport and his house was a large two story that had nice sized porch that ran along the entire front length with the mandatory swing at one end that they all seemed to have.
I gathered my purse and the beginner’s piano lesson book I’d brought along and walked to the front door. It opened before I could knock and I was again left breathless at the mere sight of Eric standing there. He was wearing a tight black t-shirt that showcased each of his biceps and the definition of his cut abdominal muscles. His dark wash jeans hung low on his hips and a strip of bare skin was peeking through between the hem of his shirt and the waist of his jeans showing a few tufts of blond hair.
I was unable to speak from being too busy swallowing the drool that was quickly accumulating in my mouth and thankfully he stood to the side motioning for me to enter as he said, “Please, come in. Did you have any trouble finding the house?” I could only shake my head ‘no’ as we stood there staring at each other. I fought the urge to fling myself at him and tackle him to the ground which is what I REALLY wanted to do and held out the book I’d brought for him instead.
“I brought this for you, “I said, as if it wasn’t obvious. When his gaze dropped down to the book I was finally able to look around and saw the baby grand piano sitting in the corner of his living room. My feet automatically moved towards it and I gently ran my fingers along the very top of it.
“This is beautiful,” I said. I spoke my next thought out loud. “Why do you have this if you don’t play?”
Eric had walked with me to the piano and he reached over picking up a silver framed picture of a woman sitting at this very piano. By her features it was obvious who she was but he spoke the words anyway and said, “It was my mother’s. I inherited it when she died.” The sadness that swept across his face had me reaching out before I could think about it and I ran my hand up and down his back in an attempt to soothe him while saying, “I’m so sorry.”
He turned and softly smiled down at me saying, “She had cancer, but it was a long time ago.” I reluctantly removed my hand from his back as he placed the book onto the piano and said, “Let’s cook dinner.” He gestured for me to follow him and I fell in line behind him sniffing like a bloodhound on a trail successfully catching his scent in the air. I’m sure my eyes fluttered in delight but they quickly went wide as I took in the sight of Eric’s kitchen.
It was a chef’s wet dream come true. The cabinets were custom built dark cherry with granite counter tops over a light rustic tiled floor. There was a brick oven in one corner with dual built in convection ovens next to the Viking 8 position cook top. A commercial grade sub-zero refrigerator sat on the opposite wall with a huge window that looked out to a beautifully manicured backyard complete with an in-ground swimming pool and patio. In the center of the kitchen was a huge island with a prep sink on one end and a pot rack made up of matching wood and black wrought iron hanging above it filled with copper pots and pans. I never knew I could love a kitchen this much.
I stood in the doorway smiling as I watched Sookie stare in wide-eyed wonderment as she looked around my kitchen wishing I had a camera so I could preserve the sight before me. It looked right. It felt right. She belonged here and the thought warmed me inside instead of scaring me to death. I longed to run my hands over the curves of her breasts and hips fantasizing of taking her right there on top of the center island. I subconsciously ran my hand over my front pocket that held a condom in case that fantasy had a chance of coming true.
I quickly pushed the thought from my mind before my dick had the chance to give my thoughts away and walked forward getting the ingredients out for tonight’s dinner. Sookie smiled putting on the chef’s coat I handed her and we spent the next half hour preparing a beef tenderloin with smoked paprika mayonnaise and herb and garlic roasted baby red potatoes. She seemed at ease tonight and appeared a little more adept in her cooking skills than just boiling water, but I still couldn’t resist standing behind her at times and placing my hands over hers to direct her movements. Not because she was doing it wrong but because I wanted, needed, to touch her. It didn’t escape me that she tended to lean back into me whenever I did it, either.
When everything was in the oven we headed into the living room and sat down on the piano bench together. I was curious about how well she played so I asked, “Will you play something for me first?”
A smile lit up her face as she replied, “Sure.” I watched as she placed her fingers on the keys and closed her eyes. Her fingers gracefully danced along the keys as she played one of my favorite pieces, Debussy’s Clair de Lune, and I found myself mesmerized watching her. She played with passion and I wondered at her choice of being a teacher when she was talented enough to play professionally.
When she finished she opened her eyes and smiled at me. All I could say was, “Wow,” and continued to stare at the enigma before me wondering what other secret treasures she held inside. She blushed at my compliment and slid towards the right so I could sit at the center of the bench. I had a hard time trying to act like I’d never played more than chopsticks but admitted to knowing the different keys.
Every time she would lean in next to me to show me anything I’d lean into her inhaling her wonderful scent. I was pretty sure she knew what I was doing because I would hear her gasp slightly while she paused in her movements until I exhaled. I forced myself to keep my fingers on the piano keys instead of putting them on Sookie which is where they really wanted to be.
Towards the end of the lesson I looked over at Sookie to see her staring at me. Her eyes were fixed onto mine and I found myself leaning towards her while she began leaning towards me. I was just inches from being close enough to kiss her when the timer rang in the kitchen signaling us that our dinner was ready. Unfortunately it also signaled the end of our possible first kiss because Sookie jumped at the sound and quickly stood up. Disappointed, I stood up as well and followed her into the kitchen.
I’m such an IDIOT! I thought as we walked into the kitchen. He was about to kiss me! I was about to kiss him! Why did I have to jump up from the sound of the timer going off? Ugh…
While Eric took everything out of the oven I took some dinnerware from one of the cabinets and set two place settings at the center island. It had four bar stools on one side with a slightly raised ledge that was a few inches higher than the other side. Eric poured some wine into a couple of glasses and set them down next to the plates as I went searching for knives and forks. I stood facing the drawers and asked, “Where do you keep your silverware?”
I hadn’t realized Eric was standing right behind me until he reached around and opened the drawer in front of me while pressing the front of his body against my back. I gasped when I felt his erection pressed against me and I grabbed onto the counter with both hands as I wantonly pushed back rubbing my ass against it. I felt Eric grab onto my hips as he spun me to face him and his lips came crashing down onto mine.
One hand held onto the back of his head while my other one snaked around his back holding his body against mine as hard as I could. I had to stand on my tiptoes because Eric was so much taller than me so he picked me up and set me down on the lower part of the kitchen island so I didn’t have to strain any longer. He stood in between my parted legs and I wrapped them around his waist to keep him there while sliding forward until I could feel his erection pressed against my core.
Our kiss finally broke when we needed to breathe and he fisted my hair into his hand as his lips traveled down my jaw and along my neck. “Eric”, I panted out, “there’s something I need to tell you.”
“What?” he murmured against my skin. “I already know how to cook,” I confessed. I felt him smile against my neck as he brought his face back up to mine. With a twinkle in his eye he admitted, “That’s okay, I already know how to play the piano.”
My responding laughter was cut short when he leaned forward and kissed me again like he was a man dying of thirst and I was his desert oasis. His lips made their way down my chest as he grazed my breasts with his teeth through the fabric of my dress. “I haven’t been able to stop thinking of you since the day we met,” he admitted. He raised his head again as he held my hips in place while he rubbed himself up and down my drenched center and added with a hoarse whisper, “I’ve thought of you here as well.”
Logically, I knew I’d only known him for a week, but I’d had a crush on him for well over a year and he was even better in person than I had imagined. Logic quickly gave way to lust and desire. Throwing caution to the wind I ran my hand in between us and rubbed his erection through the fabric of his jeans saying, “I’m not a mind reader so you’ll have to show me your thoughts.”
It was hard to fathom but Sookie tasted even better than she smelled. I knew I could happily get lost in her kiss for days needing her as my only sustenance. I’d never been so enthralled by someone before and knew I’d do whatever I had to do to make her mine.
I nearly came in my pants feeling her hand rubbing my dick through my jeans but I’m a firm believer that chivalry isn’t dead and ladies should go first. I placed wet kisses along her collarbone and down her chest before slowly opening each button with my mouth and then kissing the newly exposed piece of flesh. When her breasts were free I stopped to take one of her nipples in between my lips running my tongue over the hardened peak. Sookie moaned and grabbed onto the back of my head as she pushed her chest further in front of her while slowly grinding her hips against my chest.
I moved my mouth to her other breast and the sounds of her panting breaths mixed with her groans of pleasure were making me impossibly harder so I resumed opening the buttons of her dress with my teeth until it fell away completely. I growled at the sight of her perched on the island wearing nothing more than a scrap of silk between her thighs and her eyes, dilated with lust, watching my every move. I placed each of her legs over my shoulders before licking a trail up her inner thigh until my mouth hovered over her center.
I looked up to see Sookie had closed her eyes with her head hanging slightly back as she waited for my next move so I said, “Look at me lover.” Her eyes shot open just in time to see me rip the silk from her body as I dove forward into the sweetest nectar I’d ever tasted. I explored every part of her with my tongue while she writhed in front of me but we never broke eye contact. I could tell by the look in her eyes and the increase of her panting breaths that she was at the edge of bliss so I slipped a finger inside of her, and then another, as I sucked her clit in between my lips laving my tongue over it in rhythm with my fingers.
Her hips moved wildly as her muscles contracted around my fingers and she screamed out as her orgasm took over her entire body. I still couldn’t get enough of her taste so I swapped places between my fingers and tongue drinking up everything she gave while I rubbed circles over her bundle of nerves and before long she was screaming again with her second release. The sight of her in rapture was breathtaking and I hoped I’d be seeing it every day from then on.
I licked a wet trail up her abdomen stopping at her spectacular breasts once more while removing the condom from my pocket. I felt Sookie’s legs wrap around my waist and she pulled my face back to hers, sweeping her tongue into my mouth while her hands unbuttoned my jeans. She broke the kiss long enough to pull my t-shirt over my head and using her feet she forced the jeans down my legs. Pulling away she took the condom from my hands and stroked my length brushing her thumb over the very tip while leaning forward and running her tongue around my nipple at the same time. I hissed in pleasure while my hips bucked into her hand. She finally ripped the condom open when I moaned in need and rolled it down my length before placing my tip at her entrance.
Every nerve ending on my body was standing at attention from the sensations Eric was making me feel. He played my body like an instrument he’d practiced on his entire life and I was enjoying the fruits of his labor. I was equally intimidated and excited when I discovered how large he was but he thankfully took his time pushing into me allowing my body to adjust around his while capturing my lips with his own once again. I could taste myself on his lips and tongue while mine battled for dominance with his. He was the perfect height in line with the countertop and in the back of my mind I wondered if he’d had them built that way on purpose but as soon as he started thrusting inside of me in earnest all coherent thought was replaced with the feelings he was producing within me.
He broke the kiss and buried his face in the crook of my neck while he chanted “Sookie, Oh God Sookie,” which only turned me on more. I could feel him swelling even larger inside of me and when he changed the angle of his thrusts he hit my g-spot and I screamed out “ERIC!” as my walls clamped down on him in an involuntary effort to keep him inside of me while the mother of all orgasms rocked through my body causing Eric to roar out with his own release.
Six months later I was standing in the kitchen wearing nothing more than Eric’s chef’s coat after another satisfying round in his bed and shower trying to salvage our dinner after we’d left it sitting there, yet again, in favor of enjoying each other. I couldn’t help smiling happily as I listened to Eric playing Clair de Lune on the piano and thought maybe he would prefer to have dessert first. I took the chocolate syrup from the refrigerator and opened the buttons of the chef’s coat. Once I was thoroughly drizzled I sauntered into the living room and smiled when Eric’s playing abruptly stopped knowing we were about to christen the piano bench again.