Charlaine Harris owns almost everything. I own the rest.
I knew it would happen…the week before and days after Christmas consumed my life. Sorry to make you all wait for this chapter, I’ll make it up to you, I promise. 🙂 Thanks for all the reviews on the last chapter, I’m sorry for those of you I haven’t replied to yet. I wrote this chapter instead of replying to reviews. I hope you understand. I also hope you had a wonderful December. Here’s to a wonderful new year!
SeriousCrush, I always love you, but I love you more when you’re so sick you can’t sleep and you STILL read my stories and encourage me. Get better quick! All remaining mistakes are my own.
The Tilted Kilt Chapter 5
As Sookie thumbed through the pile of cash in her leather pouch, she smiled. Ginger was right. Friday night had been busy, and she had a stack of money to prove it. She laid the money on top of her dresser and finished getting ready for bed. Despite the late hour, she was having a hard time winding down. Eric was going to wear a kilt for her. Tomorrow night couldn’t come fast enough.
Late the next morning, Sookie’s first thought was her job at Merlotte’s. She dialed and told Sam what was going on. He begged her to stay, but gave up quickly once he discovered she wouldn’t walk away from her new job.
Guilt plagued her until she noticed the electric bill stuck to the corkboard in the kitchen. With a quick trip to her room, she retrieved more than enough money to cover it.
“How was work, honey?” Gran was bringing in a load of laundry and started folding it on the kitchen table.
“It was great.” Sookie beamed at her and then directed her to a chair so she could sit. “Let me fold. You take a break.”
Gran’s eyes swept up to the pile of bills attached to the power bill. “Did you get paid already?”
Sookie shook her head. “No, that’s just from tips. Plus there’s a little extra to go toward groceries. I just quit my job at Merlotte’s.”
“It’s their loss. I’m just sorry you have to drive so far every night. I hope you don’t get sleepy while you’re driving home.”
A smile tugged at the corners of Sookie’s mouth. “I’m not. Believe me, I’m wide awake.”
“Someone caught your fancy?” Gran winked at her.
Sookie blushed. “Maybe.” She didn’t want to jump to any conclusions about her and Eric, which meant she didn’t plan on telling anyone about him.
“I hope you know I expect to meet him, whoever he is.” Gran got up and filled a glass of water and drank it.
“No sense in rushing anything. There’s nothing going on…” Sookie wanted to say there was nothing going on yet, instead she grinned and turned back to the laundry.
Sookie struggled to hide her disappointment when she got to work and discovered Eric wasn’t there.
“He’s away on a business meeting. Anything I can help you with?” Pam offered a hopeful smile.
Sookie reached into her purse. “Um, here’s my W-4. Is it okay if I give it to you?”
Pam grinned. “You can give it to me any time.”
Sookie blushed and was relieved when Ginger called her over.
“You thought Friday was busy? Be prepared for another crazy night.” Ginger patted her leather pouch.
Sookie pulled her hair into a ponytail, and squared her shoulders. “I’m ready.”
Bill came in about an hour later and sat in Sookie’s section. This time, when she came to take his order, he asked for a Bloody Mary. She cringed as flashes of her dream came back to her. She walked away from him as quickly as she could and was relieved when he turned his attention to the other customers.
The next time she made rounds in her section the most bizarre thing happened: everyone started ordering mixed drinks. Even the table of men with two full pitchers of beer each ordered something new. As she took the orders to Chow, she found a pattern in what they were ordering. They all had vodka in them. Just like Bill’s drink.
She delivered countless Sex on the Beaches, Black Russians, Screwdrivers, Long Island Iced Teas, Icebergs, and Madrases. The men drank them, but each one blinked in surprise as they finished it and ordered another.
During a lull in orders, Ginger motioned for Sookie to join her in the kitchen. “The customers are making a run on booze tonight. Will you help me unload from the stores downstairs?”
Sookie checked her tables quickly and followed Ginger downstairs. The door to the basement was right next to the supply closet in the kitchen. Large crates, filled with bottles, lined the cement walls in the basement. As they worked to bring crates up one at a time, Ginger sighed.
“I was hoping to find a case of vodka down there. But there isn’t one.” She glanced at the bar. “I need to tell Chow and Pam.”
Sookie continued unloading and when she came back up, Ginger was behind the bar and Chow was gone. “Pam asked me to bartend while Chow was gone. Will you cover my section?”
Sookie nodded and darted out to check on her customers. Bill was watching her and smiling. The hairs on the back of her neck stood up on end and she had the urge to cover herself.
To make things even worse, a fight broke out near the entrance. Sookie craned her head to try and get a better look, but by the time she got to a spot she could see easily, the ruckus had moved outside.
Ginger flagged her down. “Now I’m out of rum. It’s like they know what I’m running low on or something! Will you get me a case from downstairs?”
Sookie nodded and disappeared through the door. She read the label on the side of each crate until she found the one holding rum. Just when she got it uncovered, the lights overhead flicked off. “Hello? I’m still down here.”
There was no answer, but she could hear the lock click. Sookie’s heart raced and her mouth went dry. She could hear her pounding heart in the silence of the room and then the stairs creaked. She pulled a bottle out of the case closest to her and backed away from the stairs. Following the cold cement wall, she worked her way into the corner of the room. Her free hand slid across the smooth surface until it hit something square. It was a light switch. A scream escaped her throat when she flipped it and was face-to-face with Bill.
“No need to be afraid.” Bill’s eyes danced and he inhaled. His mouth transformed and fangs descended down his lips.
Sookie’s fear intensified. She lunged to the side to try and get away from him, but he was too fast. He grabbed her hair and then he pressed his body against hers, pinning her to the wall.
“Shh,” he whispered into her ear as he twisted her head so he could stroke her cheek.
Her whole body recoiled and she clutched the bottle in her hand and hit him in the side of the head with it. The bottle shattered, dousing them both with alcohol.
“That was a mistake.” Bill squeezed his eyes shut and shook his head.
Sookie’s eyes widened as she watched the gash on the side of his head heal. “What are you?”
Bill growled. “You’re about to find out.” He opened his mouth and moved for her neck. Just as the tips of his fangs scraped against her skin, the locked door splintered and ripped off the hinges, and before it hit the bottom of the stairs, Eric was standing behind them.
Sookie’s breathing was too fast, but she couldn’t slow it down. Shooting pain seared her hand, which was still gripping the neck of the broken bottle.
Eric landed a brutal blow to Bill’s head, making him stagger.
As Bill recovered he held his hands up defensively. “I didn’t mean any harm.”
Eric stalked over to him and lifted him by his throat and held him against the wall next to Sookie. He leaned over her, scrutinizing every inch of her, and then his hand brushed against her throat. His eyes darkened while he coated his fingertip with her blood. He thrust it into Bill’s face. “How do you explain this?” Eric tightened his grip around Bill’s throat tight enough that he couldn’t answer. “Sookie? Are you all right? You look pale.” His voice softened as he talked to her, but she cowered when she saw his fangs.
Her breathing became louder and faster until eventually the world blurred.
Her eyes flickered for a moment as she floated through the air. Her body was nestled against something hard and cool as the wind whipped around her face.
The next time she regained consciousness, she was in a dark room. Her skin was sticky and smelled like the faint sour smell of alcohol. Her heart started to pound and the fear from the basement took over again. She couldn’t help but wonder if Bill was there and if he was going to hurt her again. Tears welled up in her eyes. She tried to figure out where she was, but couldn’t. The more she touched, the more she realized she was on a bed, and then she was horrified when she realized it wasn’t her own.
Suddenly, a light switched on. Sookie gripped the blankets she was sitting on and covered her body. Her heart tried to beat right out of her chest with a mixture of fear and lust as Eric stood in the doorway, filling the frame with his impressive and barely covered body holding a glass of water. Her mind flashed from one memory to the next. What happened in the basement? How much of it was real, and how much was her imagination?
“What happened?” Her throat hurt.
“You passed out.”
“What about B… him?” She couldn’t say his name out loud.
“I took care of him. He’s currently at a rehab center. You don’t need to worry about him.” Eric took a step closer to her.
She shook her head and held her hand out to stop him from getting any closer. She looked at her palm and frowned. “Did I get cut? It hurt. I remember it hurting. Or did I imagine that too?”
Eric nodded. “You did get cut. What else do you remember?”
“But… But, if I got cut, where’s my cut?”
“Healed.” Eric’s jaw clenched. “How much do you remember?”
She narrowed her eyes and held her hand up again to stop him from getting closer. “Wind. I remember wind, and something cold against my face. Were you carrying me?”
He nodded again, but said nothing.
“Bill tried to bite me. He had fangs. You had fangs.” Her eyes widened as she hid herself behind the blanket again. “Are you going to hurt me too?”
This time, Eric shook his head. “I’m not going to hurt you.”
For some reason, she believed him. She took a deep breath and let her hands relax. “What are you?”
“I think you’ve had enough excitement for one night.” Eric took another step closer, touching the side of the bed. “Would you like a drink?” He offered it briefly and then put it on a table next to the bed.
In a bold move, Sookie crawled over to him and touched his mouth with her fingers, only finding blunt teeth. “Have I gone completely crazy?” She cocked her head to the side and manipulated his lips, finding nothing unusual about his mouth, especially not fangs. What she did notice was how soft his lips were and suddenly was overcome with the urge to kiss them. She let her eyes drop, which was her second mistake since she was close enough to inspect every chiseled muscle in his chest and his hard pink nipples. Her brain went to mush and her hands moved of their own accord. She was touching the sash over his shoulder, tracing it down his body to the waistband of his kilt. “You wore your kilt for me. Just like you promised.”
Eric moaned when her fingers grazed his cool skin and the next time she looked at his mouth, his fangs were thrusting out from the edge of his lip.
Sookie gasped and jerked away from him. “I’m not crazy!”
Eric shook his head slowly. “No, you’re not.” He was staring at her exposed neck and cleavage. “If we’re going to have this conversation, you need to be wearing more clothes, and we need to leave my bedroom.”
“This is your bedroom?” Her head swam again as images of her fantasy pushed out every other rational thought. She focused on his kilt, and more importantly, what was under his kilt, which became the highlight of her fantasy. Now she was in real trouble.
Please give me ideas for what Eric can do to Bill (without a true death). It was so fun in Switched to see what you guys came up with! So…any ideas about what happens at the rehab center or what Eric can do before he goes there? Please send comments my way!