Chapter 8: Fireflies
“Love makes your soul crawl out from its hiding place.”—Zora Neale Hurston
“Relax, lover,” I said. Sookie’s shoulders were so drawn up with tension that they were almost touching her ears.
“I don’t think I can,” she stammered.
“You’re biting your lip,” I smiled a little. It was her “tell.” And it was the most alluring thing I’d ever seen.
Her eyebrow arched. That was another “tell.” It meant that she was about to say something that was bound to make my dick even harder. My body went through the physical process of holding a breath I didn’t need.
“Then—you bite it,” she ordered, her tone both coy and challenging.
I chuckled at her brazenness. “Don’t mind if I do,” I said as I sat up. I didn’t go right in for the kiss, however. Instead, I brought my hands up slowly to cup her cheeks.
Her expression softened as she melted into my touch. Her shoulders relaxed and her lips twitched upward to form a small contented smile. Her eyes focused on mine, and I saw myself in her chocolate-colored orbs.
Did I love her already? If I didn’t, I was sure fucking close. I hadn’t experienced the kind of unrelenting attraction I now felt for anyone else. What I’d experienced with Godric came closest, but he was my maker, and that pull had been different. My blood had compelled me to please him and to prove my devotion. My blood inside of Sookie certainly called to me—and I did want to please her and to prove myself to her—but I had felt a connection to her even before we’d shared blood.
“It is important for you to know that you can stop me at any time with a simple word,” I said.
“What word?” she asked, her eyebrow arching again.
“‘Stop’ will do it,” I said with a smile that turned into a smirk. “‘Don’t stop’ will have the opposite effect.”
She giggled, but then her eyebrows drew together into a frown. “But won’t that . . . .” She stopped midsentence.
“Won’t that give you—um . . . .? Humans call it ‘blue balls’ in their heads,” she said, managing to say the slang phrase almost daintily.
I chuckled heartily. “Yes, but I’d heal quickly. I am a vampire, after all.”
“Okay—then,” she said, unconsciously biting that errant lip again. This time, I couldn’t resist it.
I leaned in and kissed her, taking her bottom lip between my own lips and giving it a little tug with my blunt teeth. She moaned into the movement and wrapped her arms around my neck, pulling me to her.
When we’d kissed the first few times the night before, I could sense Sookie’s hesitation—not because she didn’t want to kiss me. No—the “fireflies” of her blood had been sparkling something fierce as we’d kissed. Her hesitation had clearly come from inexperience.
But—during my long life—I’d found that good kissing didn’t take a lot of study. In fact, I hadn’t actually kissed a lot of women or men during my life. It was almost too intimate of an act to share with the ordinary meal or fuck. Truth be told, I had to stretch my mind to recall the last person I’d kissed before my lips had longed to touch Sookie’s. It was about a decade prior and had involved a lost bet with Pam; the experience had taught me to never make a bet involving kissing with my child again!
However, despite her obvious inexperience with kissing, Sookie had been a fast learner—or maybe it was just that she was a fast learner “about me.” Perhaps, it was that sense of understanding that she’d mentioned between us—that seemingly instinctual knowledge. The “why” of things didn’t much matter to me. What mattered was that Sookie made me soar higher with a simple kiss than I’d ever soared in flight.
“Eric,” she groaned out my name as I moved my kisses down her throat so that she could catch her breath. I’d given her one of my T-shirts to sleep in the night before, and it quickly began to interfere with my plans to trail kisses over her collarbones.
As her hands explored my bare shoulders, I let mine drift to the bottom hem of her T-shirt and slowly pulled the garment upward. I leaned back a little and caught her eyes to make sure that there was no uncertainty in them.
I saw desire and longing, as well as a touch of nervousness, but I saw no hesitation. So I pulled up the shirt a little more. Her arms went up above her head to help me in my efforts, and in the next moment I was looking at her bare breasts, which I’d only had the pleasure of caressing through the material of the T-shirt during our “make-out” session the night before.
“Beautiful,” I said, eliciting a blush from her that traveled from her cheeks all the way down to her breasts, which made them even more tempting.
Slowly—gently—I reached to caress them; she arched into me.
“Amazing,” I whispered, marveling at both the fact that her breasts fit perfectly into the molds of my hands and the fact that she curved into my touch as if she needed it as much as I wanted to give it.
I leaned forward and kissed the top of one of her breasts lightly before planting other kisses in a trail to her nipple, which I took into my mouth and suckled gently.
“Eric,” she moaned. “Don’t stop.”
I chuckled at Sookie’s sauciness even as I was driving her crazy. As I took her other nipple into my mouth, I wondered if I ever could stop.
I thought not.
My vampiric instincts and my body screamed at me to take Sookie immediately—to seek my own release as I claimed her body and her blood—but I kept up my slow progress of exploration, both for Sookie and for myself. I wanted to catalogue everything about the experience—every sound that was sighed from her lips; every pressure on my flesh from her ever-seeking fingers; every nuance of her taste on my tongue; every gradation of the scent of her rising arousal; every flutter of her eyes, which seemed to want both to stay open in order to look at me and to close tightly so that she could withstand her pleasure.
I couldn’t help but to marvel—as I recognized so much “newness” about the experience—that I was “making love” to this woman, who was now lain on the bed and writhing for my touch as if she’d been waiting for it for a millennium.
Had I been waiting for her for as long? Had I been looking for her without even knowing it?
I felt almost as if it were my first time to be intimate as well. I’d experienced many—many—carnal pleasures; however, had I ever truly made love to a woman before? Made love with a woman?
Had I ever shared the kind of intimacy I was now experiencing with Sookie?
My woman—MINE—mewled as I moved my kisses lower: to the plane of her belly, to the swell of her hips, over her rushing femoral artery. I wanted to bite her there, but I refrained. I had already decided that my next bite would not come until she was taking my blood.
My instincts had insisted upon this kind of exchange—this equality—between Sookie and myself even before I’d seen the contract drawn up by the demon lawyer. And it seemed as if that desire to maintain equilibrium between us applied even to blood sharing.
So be it.
Again—I didn’t need to search for an answer for “why” I felt this way—especially not when that answer was so simple—so apparent. Why did I want mutuality with Sookie—instead of dominance?
I just did.
“Eric,” she gasped, as I removed her panties and left a path of kisses from her outer thigh to the center of her arousal. In the future, I knew that I would tease her—drive her crazy with arousal for hours before I finally gave her release—but, for now, I wanted to give her pleasure freely. I didn’t want her to think that I was withholding anything from her.
I did not know what Sookie’s fantasies were for her “first time.” In the modern era, I knew—mostly from Pam—that women tended to “romanticize” the loss of their virginities. In my day, it was not the same. But that didn’t matter; I wanted to give Sookie anything she might have dreamed of—and more.
Perhaps my motives centered on an unselfish impulse, but I realized with every kiss and lick of her womanhood that I was a lucky, lucky bastard. Her scent and her flavor were equally tempting—irresistible.
As I dragged the flat of my tongue from her opening to her clit, she shivered, squirmed, and gasped. I could tell that she was trying to be still—trying to let me have my way with her body without interfering by moving too much—so I placed a hand firmly on her hip to steady her—and maybe myself too.
I was pleased when her fingers laced into the strands of my hair. I knew that she would soon learn to guide me with those fingers. She would soon learn to order me with her sounds, her hands, and her legs; every little twitch of her body would soon “tell” me exactly what she wanted. However, until then, we were both learning what she liked—together.
I circled the fingers of my other hand around her lower lips, even as my tongue settled over her clit. She tensed a little as I pushed one of my fingers into her slightly. It was not long before it met with her maidenhead. It was rare these days to find a woman of Sookie’s age whose hymen was still completely intact. The main reason for this was that penetrative masturbation had become less of a taboo issue for women. Pam had told me that something called the “rabbit” was responsible.
Frankly, I had thought that the double standard between men and women as far as masturbation went was unfair even during my human days. What did I expect my wife to do while I was at sea for months? Pine for me in steely, cold silence? Hell no! In fact, I’d brought my human wife a rudimentary “toy” from what was now Denmark after a particularly “enlightening” raid. The toy was made of smooth wood, but—from the smile on Aude’s face—I think it did the job when I was not around.
Knowing Sookie as I’d come to in so little time, I figured that she’d made the decision to leave her hymen intact deliberately—thoughtfully. And I wanted to honor her wishes about the taking of it. Thus, I stopped my movements for a moment and caught her eyes.
“Your maidenhead is intact, lover,” I said quietly. “If I continue to prepare you for me as I had planned, it will be broken by my fingers. However, if you want for me to take it in the traditional way, I will.”
Sookie bit her bottom lip nervously. “I don’t know. I never—um—broke it when I . . . .”
“When you brought yourself pleasure,” I said, completing her thought for her.
She nodded. “I figured I’d wait—uh . . . .”
“For me,” I smirked a little.
She smiled at me fondly. “Yes, Mr. Ego. I was waiting for you.”
I could feel my lips curving into a sincere smile. “So? Now that I am here, how would you like me to proceed, min lilla ormtjusare? Fingers or cock?”
She flamed red and chuckled at my brazenness. I knew she’d soon get used to it.
“What do you think is the best way?” she asked, putting herself into my hands—quite literally. I couldn’t help but to love the fact that she was willing to trust me with such an intimate choice.
“The way that brings you less pain,” I responded. I was not a man who needed to bring any woman—least of all this woman—more pain due to a misguided desire to penetrate her maidenhead with my cock.
She smiled at me. “Well—I’ve very much liked the way you’ve done things so far,” she said, caressing my hair. “Keep doing what you were doing—okay?”
“Yes ma’am,” I nodded and placed a gentle kiss upon her inner thigh—followed by another and then another and then another.
It wasn’t long before she was writhing as before. As she neared her orgasm because of the attentions of my tongue to her clit, I slightly entered her entrance again—first with one finger and then a second, and then I waited until she was at the height of her rapture before I broke through her hymen. She gasped as her pain mixed with her pleasure, but I soon had her mewling in only pleasure again as I slowly stroked her core with my fingers and found her G-spot. As with the rest of her body, it seemed ready to be touched by me—and reactive to my touch. Soon Sookie had fallen over the edge a second time. I closed my eyes and moaned in gratitude as I tasted her release, which was mixed with a little of the blood from her maidenhead.
Even as I enjoyed myself immensely at the sweet center of my new lover, I made sure that my attentions amped up her arousal again before kissing my way up her body.
My cock, seemingly of its own accord, nudged her clit and then her lower lips as I kissed Sookie with everything that I had—everything that I was—trying to show her just how much this moment meant to me as well.
“You will feel a little pressure, lover.”
“I think I like your other nickname for me better, and it seems more appropriate right now,” she said, her eyebrow arching.
I almost came right then and there.
“Min lilla ormtjusare,” I chuckled. “You are definitely my little snake charmer right now.”
She giggled. “I’m ready,” she said, holding on tightly to my shoulders.
Her brown eyes literally bore into my blue orbs as I entered her slowly. Through the tie, I felt for every flicker of distress, and I adjusted my movements to make sure she stayed as comfortable as possible as I pushed further into her body. When I was fully sheathed, I stopped for a moment and closed my eyes, enjoying the feeling of her walls pulsing all around me.
With years of practice, a vampire hones his or her mind to think many things at once. Just becoming a vampire leads to more suppleness of the mind. All the little flaws in the body are “fixed” by the magic that comes with our makers’ blood. Every neuron seems to fire more efficiently—and much faster.
My ability to think many things did not stop as I enjoyed the most perfect sensation my body had ever experienced. If anything, my thoughts traveled even more rapidly through my mind.
My first thoughts were these: Keep her. Keep her by your side. Keep her safe. Keep her happy.
As I began to move in and out of Sookie, stoking our shared fire and hastening what I knew would be a shared release, I thought about the time when I’d learned Greek—of all things.
But the memory was quite relevant.
After all, the Greeks had many words for “love”—maybe even enough words.
Agápē or ἀγάπη meant unconditional love, a “spiritual love” associated with selflessness and sacrifice.
Érōs or ἔρως was physical love—passionate, sensual, all-consuming, and sexual.
Philía or φιλία referred to love stemming from the mind. It related to friendship and mutual affection based on reason and intellect.
Storgē or στοργή was generally associated with familial love; it was the kind of affection that developed because of shared lives.
As I made sure that the tip of my cock stroked her G-spot perfectly with each thrust, I remembered reading about two other kinds of love—also based on Greek concepts: ludus and pragma. Ludus referred to a playful kind of love. It was often negatively associated with the phrase, “playing the field.” However, in its pure sense, it meant to love with joy and friskiness. Pragma referred to long-standing love, the kind that endured over time and could not be shaken.
Even as my mind whirled with these thoughts and remembrances, my body felt as if it had been lit from the inside out.
Without withdrawing from the heaven of Sookie’s body, I quickly repositioned us so that I was sitting against the headboard and she was astride me.
The movement caught her off guard a little and her eyebrow rose.
I growled, but I held myself together—barely. I didn’t want to come until I was taking her blood and she was taking me. I didn’t want to explode until she was exploding with me.
“I’ve always wanted to try this position,” she purred.
“Before I am done with you—you will be an expert at every position, min lilla ormtjusare.”
She moaned as I thrust upward. Soon, we were both soaring again. I reached toward the nightstand and took hold of the dagger that Godric had given to Fintan. For some reason the object seemed charged with magic—holy even. But—again—I didn’t ask why.
The why didn’t matter.
I asked Sookie the question that did matter.
“Will you take my blood, Sookie Brigant?”
Without hesitation, she took the small weapon from my hands.
“From where?” she asked.
“It doesn’t matter,” I groaned as her core tightened around me. “All of my blood is now yours, Sookie—every drop!”
She stopped moving for a moment, and I followed the tear that rose into and then fell from her eye. I caught it with my thumb and brought it to my lips.
I would remember it always.
“Thank you,” she said as she leaned forward and kissed me gently. We began to move together again as she seemed to take an inventory of the places she might cut me. As soon as her eyes registered her choice, she looked back into mine.
“Will you take my blood, Eiríkr Ulfrikson?” she asked, calling me by the name I’d told her had been my first.
“Yes,” I answered gruffly.
She smiled even as her core rippled around my cock. “Together?”
I nodded and stretched forward, waiting for her to cut. She took a deep breath and then dragged the point of the dagger over my pectoral muscle right above my unbeating heart. She leaned in and latched on as my fangs penetrated her neck.
It was in that moment that I knew that I loved Sookie. I didn’t ask “when” I had fallen in love with her. I did not ask “why” I loved her. I simply basked in the feeling as I basked in her taking pleasure in my blood and in my body. She cried out as her release overtook her and then bit down on my wound, taking in even more of me.
I came harder than I ever had.
And I felt a paradise of riches.
Sookie was breathing hard as I nicked my tongue and healed her bite wounds, even though the infusion of my blood in her would have done the job. It didn’t matter. I wanted the wounds healed sooner, rather than later. I didn’t even want the “itch” of them to bother her.
She shivered on top of me, feeling an aftershock of pleasure from her orgasm.
She stayed still for a moment—we both did—as she caught her breath and I tried to catch hold of all of the “fireflies” that seemed to be zigzagging in her body and in mine as our blood commingled and then melded.
Her eyes stayed locked into mine as if she were reading them—and me. I was content to let her see into the very center of my being. And she didn’t look away.
“I love you,” she said with conviction—stubbornness even.
“I love you as well,” I responded.
Her eyebrow twitched upward, and so did my cock, which was still inside of her. I was now certain that the two—her eyebrow, my cock—were connected by a string I couldn’t see.
“How do you know?” she asked. She didn’t seem skeptical—just curious.
“Because—while we were making love, I thought about every meaning I know for the word, ‘love,’ and I feel them all for you.”
She smiled. “Tell them to me?” she asked.
“There is agápē love,” I said.
“I’ve heard of that kind in church,” she said.
“Yes—it is love from the spirit—unconditional and selfless. I know I feel this because I would put your needs above my own. I am a selfish creature, but I will shield your body with mine through any trouble. I will make you happy, even if it leads me to damnation.”
She sniffled. “Tell me more?”
“The second kind of love I know of is érōs,” I said even as I thrust my body upward, making her moan. “I know I feel this because I have an unremitting and an all-consuming desire for your body. To fuck it. To bite it. To mark it.”
She gripped my shoulders as I established a slow rhythm. “More,” she gasped.
“Ludus is a kind of love that is characterized by play,” I said, even as I swirled my hips and moved my hand to tease her clit with my fingers. “I know that I feel this kind of love for you because I wish to tease you unrelentingly. And I wish to keep you laughing,” I added with another upward thrust and an exaggerated eyebrow waggle.
She giggled. “More?”
“Then there is philía. Aristotle described it as love from the mind. I know that I love you like this because I want to have a partnership with you—lifetimes full of mutual respect and give-and-take. I want to be challenged by you. And I want to challenge you. I want to experience the world with you—the history of it and the future of it.”
She wiped away another tear and began to move her body in concert with mine.
“More?” she asked.
“There is storgē. It is the kind of affection most associated with the concept of family. I know that I feel this kind of love for you because I want to be your family, Sookie Brigant. I want to share in your burdens and your triumphs. I want to know what it is like to spend all days with you.”
More tears fell from her eyes. “Is there more?” she asked, even as her walls fluttered around my cock.
“One more. It is called pragma,” I said, groaning a little as my own release neared.
“It is long-standing love. It grows over the years as understanding grows among two people. I know that I feel the beginning of this kind of love for you because of something you said earlier.”
“Something I said?”
I nodded. “Yes. When our eyes first met, it was this kind of love—understanding—that began. It is a paradox that this is the love I felt for you at first sight, since it is usually thought of as the kind of love that builds and thrives with time. But I don’t question that it is there—already there—and strong inside of me. I do not care ‘why’ it formed. All I know is that it will grow even larger throughout time.”
Tears were streaming down her cheeks now, and I found that I didn’t like to see her crying—even though I “felt” through our twice-formed tie that she was happy and almost in awe of my words.
Still—I wanted her tears gone, so I wiped them with my thumbs, stopped talking, and showed her my love with my body.
Soon her eyes were dry and she was screaming my name.
That was better.
A/N: Thanks to Kleannhouse for the quick beta work on this chapter!
And thanks to everyone who wrote in about the last chapter! I hope you enjoyed the lemon. I wanted to tell it from Eric’s POV so that I could stay in his busy, busy brain.
And—yes—sadly, there is only an epilogue left to come for this story. Many of you have asked that this story be longer and you’ve told me about things you want to see/know about/etc., but—for now, at least—I hope that the epilogue will give you some of what you wanted. I might (eventually-AFTER I do other projects) do other things with this universe, but I just don’t know. I have a lot on my plate with my stories—so many things I wanna work on. But I’m so pleased I found this fic and could share it with you!
So—I hope you’ll stay tuned for the epilogue.
And let’s all enjoy this chapter banner one last time–shall we? Thanks, Seph!