Well now that was a shock and I could tell that Eric was as taken aback as I was. I’d just been presented to most every vampire in four states as a Queen. If you had told me two years ago that I would be walking off a stage with Eric as my King I would have laughed right in your face. And if I hadn’t been able to feel Eric’s steady presence through the bond and my hand looped through his arm, I still wouldn’t have believed it. I’d be pinching myself and demanding that I wake up from such an utterly ridiculous dream. But here we were, walking through the throng of kneeling vampires, me and Eric, the man of my dreams and the vampire that fate had determined for me centuries before either of us had been born. Wow. That was really all I could say, just wow.
Eric must have felt my emotions broiling beneath the surface because his cool hand slipped overtop mine and squeezed ever so slightly. Outwardly we were both calm and collected, but inwardly I was anxious to drag him off so we could figure out what the heck just happened. I mean the Ancient Pythoness, the flipping Oracle of Delphi, had just blown my mind. I concentrated on putting one foot in front of the other, breathing normally, and holding my head up high. I didn’t want to give any of the supernatural community present any reason to doubt that I had every right to be standing next to King Eric Northman, also known as the sexiest man I’d ever met.
I glanced over at him and nearly swooned. He might not have wanted to be King, but he sure looked every inch the part. His three piece suit, vest and all I happily noted, caressed the lines of his muscled frame perfectly and I resisted the urge to reach my hand down and grab that perfect butt of his. He must have sensed my desire through the bond because I saw his lips twitch ever so slightly. Oh yes buddy, you surely are getting King sex tonight, even if we do it in your office with every single vampire in the state of Louisiana listening.
Vampires of all persuasions came up to congratulate us once we made it out into the lobby area. I stayed mostly silent, sticking to general rules of etiquette and saying thank you and things of the like. Eric never left my side or even let go of my hand. I watched jealously as Pam slipped out the front doors to head back to Fangtasia to prepare for the party. Eric and I made our way towards freedom, but it was slow-going since we were stopped every few feet. Looked to me like the vamps were trying to get on Eric’s good side early on in the game, which was a-okay with me since it meant that we’d have more allies if anything went wrong in the future. The Ancient Pythoness said we were fated to be together, not that it would be a walk in the park.
It took over an hour, but we finally made it through the crowd. Eric wrapped one arm around me and swept us quickly outside towards his Corvette. Once we reached the sleek red machine, he pressed me up against the passenger door and kissed me like there was no tomorrow. We, hopefully, had plenty of them, but he was a master in the kissing department so I never argued when his lips met mine. It didn’t last long, unfortunately, and he pulled my body away from the door and gallantly opened it, waiting for me to settle myself into the seat before closing it and zipping over to the driver’s side. He slid the keys into the ignition and roared out of the parking lot.
It took me a moment to gather myself, like I said, master kisser and all, but then I finally asked, “So…what just happened? Not the kissing obviously, but I didn’t think we were going to announce me as Queen?”
“The Oracle evidently had other plans.” I knew his mind was racing because he had reverted to his taciturn conversational skills.
“You don’t mind do you? I mean, I wasn’t all that eager for it to happen, but now that I have I find I’m relieved that it’s done and over with.”
“Of course not,” he said, sending me a massive dose of love through the bond to reassure me.
“Good. I just wanted to make sure since it seemed to take both of us by surprise.” I moved my left hand from my lap to rest on top of his thigh. He released his death grip on the gear shift and slipped his fingers around my resting hand, tracing circles around my stunning ring.
“Min älskade solsken, I would have shouted it from the bayou to the Rockies the instant you agreed to be mine. I only wished to give you time to adapt to the changing circumstances. I worried that you would be angry at the announcement actually.”
I shook my head to let him know that I wasn’t upset at all. Then I asked, “Min askala what?” I was figuring it was Swedish, but couldn’t guess any more than that.
He smiled and moved my hand to his heart. “Min älskade solsken, it means my beloved sunshine, which is what you are to me, the sunshine that warms my soul. If my heart could beat every pulse would cry your name.”
Did he know how to make a girl swoon or what? “Well I don’t know Swedish, but I do know that I love you, more than I thought possible. I don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t been able to rescue you.” I stifled a shudder and brought his hand to my lips.
His eyes met mine. “Hush, did you not just hear the Oracle tell us we were fated?”
“As long as we chose to fight for each other. Eric, I will always fight for you, no matter what.”
“As will I Sookie.” We fell silent, both lost in our own thoughts.
It didn’t take long before we arrived at Fangtasia. The lot was filled with cars and I was interested to see what Pam had done with the place. Eric rushed around to my side of the car, opening the door and offering me his hand to step out. I used my free hand to gather the layers of skirt so that I wouldn’t trip on them.
“Are you ready my love?”
“As I’ll ever be,” I replied. He once again hooked my hand around his arm, feeling for all the world like he was my own personal Mr. Darcy, and we walked together into Fangtasia.
I was floored by the change in the place. It had always looked exactly like I imagined a vampire bar to look: lots of sleek black and red with dim lighting. Tonight, it looked like Queen Elizabeth’s private decorator had come to the Shreveport. Some of the tables had been removed and the rest had been set off to the sides. There were more of them at the back of the room and then they tapered like a martini glass, alternating rows between the booths. The chairs and tables, as well as the booths were covered with grey linens and atop of each of the tables sat a deep purple runner that was lined with thinner linen of creamy antique white. Wrought iron candlesticks topped with purple candles sat in the center of each, bathing the room in a warm soft light. Another purple and off-white runner covered the bar with several candles lining its length. At the end of the bar sat a shining baby grand piano played by a woman in a striking black velvet evening gown who stroked its keys coaxing out dulcet tones that enveloped the room. A stripe of black and purple carpet ran down the center of the room and lead up to the two thrones on the stage. The normal red velvet curtains had been traded out for purple velvet and five tall wrought iron candlesticks with three grey candles atop each were staggered around and behind the thrones. Servers dressed in black circled the floor with glasses of blood and there were several donors staggered across from the baby grand.
If Pam hadn’t walked up to us, dressed in a Dolce and Gabbana strapless satin floor length gown of a grey so pale it looked like the leftover wisp of a retreating storm cloud, I would have turned around thinking I had come to the wrong place.
“Pam. You have really outdone yourself. Fangtasia looks amazing tonight.”
She dipped a slight curtsy to both of us and I swatted her playfully on the shoulder. “Oh your majesties, I had to make sure the splendor of the place matched that of your own.” A teasing smile parted her lips and she waved a hand over the room. “If you think this is beautiful, just wait til you see what I have planned for your wedding. By the way, the decorators will be arriving in the afternoon and I command you not to peek.”
I was speechless. This was even more beautiful than I imagined my wedding and I had no idea how Pam was going to top it. I solemnly crossed my heart. “I promise not to peek.”
“Thank you Pam for arranging all of this. There is no one else I would have trusted with such an event,” Eric said grabbing a champagne glass of blood from one of the passing servers. “But however did you get a baby grand piano in here?” He asked her, very confused.
“I had them cut a hole in the wall.”
Eric practically spit his blood into her face. “You did WHAT?!”
“Oh don’t worry yourself! They put in another door, so now we have a double door in the back instead of a single one.” She curtsied again and swept off to mingle, leaving Eric standing there flabbergasted.
“She never does anything halfway, does she?” I teased him.
“No, that she doesn’t, but alas, there’s nothing to be done about it now, so shall we go and greet our guests my Queen?” Eric asked me, a tinge of teasing in his voice, evidently already over the shock.
“GAH! I’m never going to get used to that. I’m just little ol’ me, telepathic fairy human hybrid from Bon Temps and barmaid extraordinaire.”
Eric turned to face me, taking both of my hands in his and holding them to his chest. “Sookie, you are so much more than this. You are my Valkyrie, my lover, my best friend, and my Queen. You and I will forge a new path for the supernatural community. You worked hard as waitress and you will work hard at whatever you choose to do next. Now, I command you to stop downplaying your abilities.”
“Ooh…you command me? Is that it Mr. Highhanded?” I asked not a hint of anger in my voice.
“Yes. That it is. Now, that dress is far too beautiful to waste on conversation. So the sooner we circulate, the sooner we can slip into my office for a little mingling of our own.” He waggled his eyebrows at me seductively and the low tingle that had started the moment I saw him at the ceremony surged, sending shivers throughout every inch of my nervous system. Lord have mercy. Once all was said and done, I wasn’t going to let him come up for air for at least a month, maybe longer.
I let him feel my devastating lust through the bond, teasing him myself. “Anything you say my Viking King.” I was just about to let the lust get the best of us when Diantha bounced over in a short puffy fuchsia evening gown that looked like it belonged in the movie Pretty in Pink.
“MyKingMyQueenhowyadoin?” She asked in her mutilated version of English.
I leaned over and hugged her. “Great thanks to you and everyone else. You guys were awesome and we wouldn’t be standing here without you.”
I laughed at her while Eric nodded in complete agreement. “Well, I’m glad we could oblige you, but I’m hoping to keep the battles to a minimum if possible.”
“Knowwhatyamean. Gottago!” And she bounded away just as quickly as she had shown up.
I was momentarily distracted by a server bearing a glass of wine and looked up to see Pam tip her glass in my direction. When I glanced back we had been joined by Win and Ritchie looking like punk rock prom dates complete with Converse sneakers, and Quinn dressed simply in a nice black suit.
“Oi mate! So here’s to the King and Queen!” He tilted his bottle of True Blood, evidently you could dress a vampire up, but you couldn’t make him drink the Royalty.
“Truly, congrats Er, I’m really happy we all made it out alive.” Win said smiling.
“Was there ever any doubt with me on your side dollface?” Ritchie asked, nudging her in the hip, a devilish smirk on his face.
Quinn offered his congratulations as well and we stood around like old friends, surveying the room and just enjoying the evening. There wasn’t anyone here that we didn’t know and it was nice and relaxing. No stress and no betrayals. We excused ourselves and moved through the crowd thanking everyone for coming and making small talk.
I caught myself swaying to the music at one point and noticing Eric held his hand out to me, sweeping me to the open space in the front. He knew how much I loved to dance and we were both very good at it. I lost myself in the movement, the swirling circles, and the feel of his arms around me. The layers of my dress twirling about my ankles, I felt like every inch of a fairy princess. I stared up into Eric’s fathomless blue eyes and lost myself in us, in the idea that we had survived and that we were going to get a chance at our happily ever after. Tomorrow night the ridiculously handsome man leading me around the dance floor would be my husband. It was amazing to me.
“And so we come full circle, except this time, you are mine.” I could feel the swell of pride blasting forth from Eric when he said this.
“I am yours.” I leaned my head against his chest simply enjoying our closeness. Our lives had so few genuine moments of joy that I wanted to enjoy it while it lasted. Who knew how long our respite would be.
When the song finished Pam moved to the center of the stage and she motioned us to take the thrones on either side of her. The room fell silent. She looked around the room that was filled with our allies, those who had fought side by side with us. “Tonight, we are here to celebrate Eric’s coronation. I wanted to say a personal thank you to everyone in the room for making this evening possible. When Sookie approached me months ago and said she wanted to rescue Eric from the evil Queen, I thought for sure we’d both die horribly painful drawn out deaths, but every single one of you stepped up to ensure that Karin and I aren’t a pile of goo and Sookie isn’t buried six feet under.” I felt Eric tense next to me and I sent a wave a reassurance to him. I was sitting right next to him, as alive as I’ve ever been.
She continued, “Though I honestly thought it was a suicide mission, I wouldn’t have changed a thing, and now Eric is back where he belongs, at Fangtasia and in the arms of his little Fairy Princess without whom I’d still be bored to tears enthralling the vermin and counting down two hundred years until I was able to see my maker again. So please, everyone raise your glasses in honor of the King and Queen of Louisiana, and I promise they aren’t spiked with silver.” A ripple of laughter swept through the crowd as they all drank a toast to us.
Eric leaned over to me, his hand cupping my chin, and placed a simple chaste kiss on my lips. I sighed contentedly and placed my hand atop his. “Forever Eric. You have my heart forever.”
We stayed that way for a while locked in each other’s eyes. Eventually we withdrew from our own private world and went back to the party, but it didn’t take long before I saw my opening. Pam was deeply in a conversation with Karin and everyone else was simply enjoying the company around them. I needed him. He was so heartstoppingly handsome and ever so mine. No one would miss us. I entwined my fingers in his and drew him through the crowd, sneaking around the bar and into his office. I let go of his hand and closed and locked the door, the sounds of the party completely muffled by the soundproof walls. I guess I wouldn’t have to worry about the entire state of Louisiana hearing us after all.
He had crossed the room and stood seemingly frozen in place. “You are so beautiful,” he said gazing at me.
“Then why are you so far away?” I asked, moving slowly towards him. He stayed where he was, watching every step I took closer. When I reached him, I lifted my hands to his shoulders to remove his suit coat setting it carefully on top of his desk. “Have I told you tonight how gorgeous you are?” I began to unbutton his vest. “How much being near you drives me insane with desire?” I slid my hands over the smooth planes of his abs beneath the silky texture of his shirt and pushed the vest off. “How hard it’s been to keep my hands off of you when all I wanted to do was rip your clothes off?” My fingers moved to his shirt, taking one button at time and placing my lips on every revealed inch of his skin.
His hands moved up, running over the outline of my waist, his thumbs tracing a line under my breasts. I nibbled his chest, leaving tiny red bite marks that disappeared almost instantly. I kissed my way down his chest, my hands drifting downward to play just along the inside edge of his waistband.
“Sookie…” his voice sighed raspy with need, “They will know.”
“And…” I let my hands continue their exploration.
His eyes flared with lust, “I thought you might want more privacy than this?”
“The walls are soundproof right? So I can scream your name all I want and they’ll never know beyond our disheveled reappearance at the party?” I asked and my fingers busy releasing his belt and tossing it aside. “Are you worried that you’re going to ruin my reputation Mr. Darcy?” My fingers fumbled with his button on his pants and reached down to grasp him. I knelt and my tongue darted out to encircle him and then licked down the long hard line, coming back up to take him in my mouth. I eased down slowly and then back up, my eyes never releasing his, watching his go black with passion.
His hands twined themselves in my hair. “I didn’t know if you would…didn’t know if you…with everyone so close…” He pulled me up so that I was standing.
“Well I feel like having sex with the King so shut up and kiss me already,” I commanded and his mouth crashed into mine.
Our lips tangled with each other while his hands pushed me toward the edge of his desk. He knelt down, lifting my skirt and nipped his way up my inner thigh. When his mouth reached the edge of my lacy thong his fangs ran full out and ripped the material from my skin. His finger dipped inside me and I grabbed at the edge to steady myself, moaning desperately as he slid his fangs into me at the same time. I threw my free leg over his shoulder, my hips moving to the draw of my blood into him, to the rhythm of his searching fingers. His fangs withdrew and his tongue replaced his fingers until I could barely stand.
“Eric…” I panted, “I need you…now…”
Suddenly he crushed my body to his and then he was sinking into me. My legs wrapped around him and he moved us to the wall, using it to brace against the furious pace our bodies demanded. We were so lost that neither one of us cared when the plaster cracked from the intensity of our passion.
“Mine,” he cried out as he thrust into me, over and over as he repeated. “You are mine Sookie. Never another, never leave me…only mine…oh god Sookie.”
My hands gripped his hair, our eyes locked together. “Yours Eric, all of me, only yours, oh god Eric, you are mine…never leave you…oh Eric.” Our words tumbled over each other while wave after wave of pleasure crashed over us. We came together, letting loose a mutual primal scream, of his name, of my name, of half uttered guttural cries.
The world settled around us again and, still connected, he moved us gently to the couch. We stayed that way, simply whispering love in between kisses, promises between whispers, until we knew we’d have to make our disheveled reappearance. I slowly rebuttoned his shirt while he picked bits of plaster out of my hair.
“I must look a sight,” I said feeling bobby pins poking my head in uncomfortable places. I pulled one out attempting to fix it back into place.
“You are stunning,” he said as he took the bobby pin from my hand and began pulling the rest of them out as well until the messy curls fell down around my shoulders.
“At least the dress survived you. Pam thought for sure you shred it.”
“No, I find that I am fond of this dress, although I have purchased other clothes that are kept here for you to wear when indeed one day I do destroy something you’re wearing,” he remarked with a self-satisfied smirk.
“Oh so you weren’t worried about my reputation,” I winked at him.
“No, I was, but I knew that eventually I would wear down those good southern girl manners. I just thought it would take longer.”
“Well I didn’t want to deny you on your coronation night,” I paused, “and I think you might be turning me into a little bit of a hussy.”
“Never, you are a goddess and my Queen, you shall never be a hussy.”
“Well that’s good to know, because I can’t seem to get enough of you.”
“I would have it no other way lover. Now, I think we should return to our party before Pam pounds on the door to take you away from me.”
I stood up, gathering his vest and suit jacket and slipping them both over his broad shoulders. “PS. I really like the vest. A little old fashioned, to be sure, but sexy as hell.”
“I shall have to remember that.” He took my hand, entwining our fingers once more, and we headed back out into the party. Pam noticed our reemergence and shook her head in mock dismay, but didn’t say a word. Evidently she thought Eric deserved some King sex after all.