Charlaine Harris owns almost everything. I own the rest. Thanks to SeriousCrush for her excitement and support to read my stories and edit them, despite how busy her real life is. And thanks to all my readers who leave me such wonderful reviews. I love you all.
I’m posting tonight because I wanted to share my news! My publisher has offered me a contract for my second book! I can’t begin to tell you how relieved and excited I am by the news. I’ll share more when I can! 🙂
“What’s he want?” Sam’s body tensed as Sookie approached the bar.
“Um, a glass of red wine?” She shrugged. Sam was weird, but never like this.
“That’s not what I mean Sookie. Why is he here?” Sam’s words were forced through clenched teeth.
“He’s here to see me, I guess.” This was the part where she was supposed to confess that she had gone to Glamoured with Marcy two nights ago. Marcy had gone last night without her and had called in sick tonight. Sookie had a hunch Marcy was about halfway to Shreveport by now for another night with the vampires. Despite the truth bouncing around her head, she wasn’t about to admit anything about what had happened, especially not the fact that she had just introduced herself to him. She should’ve given him her home address while she was at it.
“Be careful Sookie. I don’t trust him.” Sam narrowed his eyes at Eric. The men exchanged a meaningful look.
That makes two of us. “I’m trying to be.” How was she supposed to be careful around vampires?
“Follow me,” Sam said as he led her to his office. “Take this, just in case.” Sam opened a drawer in his desk and placed a delicate silver chain in her hand.
“Um, thanks Sam, but I don’t want you to give me jewelry,” she stammered.
“It’s silver,” he whispered, “it burns vamps if they touch it. Put it on.”
“How do you—?” She frowned and tilted her head. She tried to get into his head but couldn’t. It was all scrambled and scratchy.
“Never mind. Just wear it. Promise me.” He was pleading with his eyes.
“Promise.” She slipped the necklace around her neck and clasped it. “It’s beautiful. Thank you Sam.” Her cheeks were hot. “I should get back to work.”
* * * *
True to his word, Eric waited. Almost everyone had cleared out, even the nosey couple at the bar that kept waiting for Eric to jump up and bite someone. The only other person in Merlotte’s besides Sam was Frank, who was passed out at the bar.
Sookie picked up the phone and dialed a cab. “Hi Al, can you come pick up Frank again? Thanks. See you in twenty.”
Eric’s face was serene, and so still it was eerie, just like his mind. Every time she tried to listen, she was faced with a void of glorious silence. Whenever he caught Sookie looking at him, he smiled, making his eyes sparkle. Why had she been so terrified of him? Oh yeah, because he turned an entire room full of people into mindless zombies. She passed by the table and gave him a half smile.
He opened his mouth to say something, but she stopped him. “I’m on the clock for another ten minutes, and then you can walk me to my car.”
The gravel in the parking lot crunched as Al’s taxi pulled up. “Come on Sam, let’s get Frank in the taxi.” It was a well-rehearsed routine; Sam took Frank’s left side, Sookie took his right. Of course, she wasn’t planning on Frank’s body tensing as he prepared to puke. “No, Frank! Not inside!”
Before either of them knew what was happening, Eric scooped Frank out of their arms and carried him outside. When Sookie and Sam recovered from the shock of someone moving so fast, they found Eric casually holding Frank by the back of his shirt while Frank threw up in the shrubs under the windows. “It looked like you needed a hand.”
Sam puffed his chest out and said, “We were doing just fine.”
Sookie stepped between the men and shook her head. “Thank you for helping. I really didn’t want to stay and clean vomit off the floor … or myself.”
“I think he’s done. Would you like me to put him in that waiting car?” Eric nodded toward the taxi.
“Yes. Thank you.”
Eric carried him effortlessly, which was no small feat. Sookie had carried him plenty over the last few months. Frank was a heavy guy.
Sam glared at Eric and whispered, “Be safe. I mean it Sookie. I’ll be right inside.” He whipped the towel from the bar over his shoulder and pushed through the doors.
Eric strolled back to where she was standing. “Are you off the clock now?”
Sookie smiled. “Yeah, let me go get my purse.” Her stomach flipped when she came back out. He was staring at the sky, his face tilted up, his body relaxed and vulnerable. “Thank you again for saving me from Frank’s bodily fluids.”
“It’s the least I could do.” He gestured to the parking lot where three cars remained: Frank’s rusty pickup truck, Sookie’s old yellow car, and a sleek red corvette.
Sookie let out a burst of laughter. “Let me guess, that’s yours?”
Eric leaned his ass against the driver window of the corvette, which was parked next to hers. “Yes. Which one is yours?”
“This one.” Sookie looked at the gravel under her feet. “So…how did you find me?”
“Easy.” He closed the gap between them and pointed at her breast.
She scoffed and nearly smacked his hand until she realized what he was pointing to. Merlotte’s was embroidered into her white T-shirt, just like the one she had worn two nights ago. “Oh.” Question one, answered. “So, why did you want to find me?”
“You are very…interesting.” He backed away again. This time, he folded his arms over his chest making the muscles in his upper arms bulge. “I was hoping you would come back.”
“And when I didn’t, you hunted me down like a deer.” Sookie raised one eyebrow.
“A deer?” A smile pulled up the corners of his mouth. “Are you afraid?”
“Maybe a little.” Her voice was softer than she intended it to be as she played with the chain around her neck.
Eric’s eyes narrowed. “Did your boyfriend give that to you?”
“Sam is not my boyfriend. He’s my boss.”
“Hmm. He’s very concerned about your wellbeing. He’s watching us right now.”
Sookie turned toward the back of Merlotte’s and the blinds over the back window moved. “He doesn’t seem to like you much.”
“The feeling is mutual.” Eric shifted toward her a little. “Are you going to tell me what happened two nights ago?”
“I could ask the same of you!” It was beyond strange, all those people being controlled by him.
“A magician never reveals his secrets.”
“You’re not a magician. You did something to them. You got into their heads or something.”
Eric’s eyebrows lifted. “All but yours.” He stared at her intently and pushed against her brain, the same way Pam had done two nights ago.
“Stop it. Whatever you’re trying to do. It makes my head itchy.”
He shook his head. “What are you?”
Sookie sighed. She’d had enough games for one night. “I’m tired and I’m going home.” As she walked around the back of her car to unlock the driver’s door, a breeze ruffled her hair. Eric was standing in front of her. “Geez, you startled me. How did you move so fast?”
“You’re asking about my secrets again.” He was smiling. “Will you come back so we can talk without an audience?” He motioned over his shoulder.
“Maybe.” Breathing became more difficult, and then nearly impossible when he touched her arms. She closed her eyes and swallowed hard.
“Tomorrow night?” His fingers curled around her biceps, brushing against the sides of her breasts.
Her breath caught in her throat as she stopped a moan from escaping her lips. No one had ever touched her like that before. “Tomorrow night.”
Eric’s smile revealed fully descended fangs, transforming his beautiful face into a primal animal.
Sookie’s eyes fell between their bodies. Even in the dim parking lot, she could see the bulge in his pants. She had done that to him. It was suddenly very hot. She started panting.
“I’ll see you then.” Eric nodded and moved in a blur, opening and closing his car door faster than Sookie could clearly see. Gravel flipped toward her car as he sped away.
She collapsed against the side of her car and waited until her breathing evened out. “I’ll see you tomorrow,” she called out into the dark night.
Poor Sookie, she doesn’t stand a chance against Eric’s charm. 🙂
On to Glamoured: Chapter 4