Before Bill could respond, he was falling to his knees in front of me due to Pam’s strategically placed kick to the back of his left knee. When he was on the floor, she leaned over him to speak in his ear, “What she said.”
Just as I was about to move forward and strike him again, I felt a powerful tug on my shoulder. When I looked behind me, Eric was staring into my eyes while one hand held me in place. Though I could feel his amusement and pride, I also saw and felt his anger.
Shit. I hoped most of that anger was for Bill and not for me.
When Eric tilted his head towards the couch, I obeyed. I didn’t need another punishment so soon. I was pretty sure I had already racked up a second one.
“As you can see Compton, neither of my children require any help.” Eric said as he stood without a stitch of clothing over the kneeling vampire.
“You’ve brainwashed her!” Bill snapped back as he regained his footing and stood before the taller vampire. “She would never take you to her bed of her own free will.”
“Hmph.” I grunted softly.
Luckily Eric ignored it.
“Whom my child does or does not relate with is no longer any of your concern.” Eric smirked down at him.
“She was mine! She was taken from me.” He nearly whined before composing himself. “I have things to discuss with her.”
My fangs were as long as they had ever been, as I hissed at his declarations.
Eric calmly grabbed his shirt and pants off the floor and dressed while working his way behind his desk, as Bill glared daggers in his direction.
Personally, I was fighting the battle between anger at Bill and lust over Eric’s naked form. He must have felt my internal struggle as he quickly looked my way and winked when he bent over to pull up his pants.
I groaned softly to myself. That man has an ass that should be worshipped by women everywhere.
But it was mine.
When he was completely clothed, he turned back to Bill with a bored expression and a flourish of his arm. “If you have something to say, then say it.”
Bill blanched slightly. “It is a private conversation.”
Eric laughed without humor, “You think I will let you speak to my new child alone? The woman whom you lied to and caused immeasurable pain?”
“I had no choice! I was under orders. You know I had to follow them!”
“Enough. You will not be alone with my child. Nor would I leave her alone with any other vampire.” Eric ordered before turning to me with a raised eyebrow. “Do you wish to speak with him?”
The eyebrow told me what I needed to know.
I was being given permission to speak my mind.
Bill smiled triumphantly in Eric’s direction before stepping towards me as if to embrace me. When I stood up and he was close enough, I punched him again. This time in the stomach.
As Pam had done before, I leaned over to speak close to his ear. “Did you truly believe I would want to be touched by you?”
“You don’t understand.” He growled out as we both straightened up. “As a vampire, you must obey your Queen.”
“That’s such a relief, Bill, to know I was just another order from your Queen.” I hissed.
“No!” He said quickly. “That’s not what I meant!”
“Is this where you tell me how you truly love me?” I growled.
“Sookie, I do love you.” He pleaded.
“Before or after you took my virginity?” I asked evenly and I heard Eric growl in response to the question.
“What?” Bill asked.
“It’s a simple question, Bill.” I said lightly. “Did you love me before or after you had sex with me?”
He paused for a moment and I didn’t give him a chance to answer before I turned to walk towards Eric. When I reached his side, he pulled me into his lap and I turned back to look at the pathetic vampire in front of me.
“I don’t want to know you anymore, William Compton. I would say I wished I’d never met you but then I wouldn’t be here and I like it here,” I said as I gestured to Eric. “As far as I’m concerned, you are just another vampire in my Maker’s territory and I have no desire to spend anymore time in your presence or hear anything else you wish to say.”
I felt Eric’s pride at my words right before I felt him go back into Sheriff mode.
“Speaking of your presence in my territory, Compton. Do tell us why you have returned? Shouldn’t you be silvered in a coffin somewhere?” Eric asked as he draped his arms around me possessively.
“I had personal business to attend to, Sheriff. My Maker has taken my place.”
“And Lorena felt this personal business was important enough for her to undertake your punishment for you?”
“Yes, well, Lorena and I were close for a great many years. She saw fit to come to my aide and I accepted.”
“Of course you did you sniveling weasel.” Pam drawled from her post by the door.
Eric ignored Pam’s words and continued his questioning. “Are you still completing work for the Queen while you are in my area, Compton?”
“Eric,” he answered in a congenial but obviously false tone, “you know I would not be able to give you that information even if it were fact.”
Eric nodded curtly as if he received his answer before placing my feet on the ground and standing to his full height beside me. “Then we have nothing else to discuss. You may leave.”
“Sookie, I still . . .” He started but was unable to finish with Eric’s hand tight around his throat.
“When I dismiss you, then you leave. There are no final words to be said unless they are by me. Do you understand?” Bill nodded. “In this case, my final words are these . . . No one and nothing will come between my children and me. Any attempts to come between us will end in final death for the vampire involved. Do you understand?”
Bill’s fangs were out and he was struggling to get loose from Eric’s hand, until Eric made his grip even tighter. Bill finally stilled and nodded. Eric immediately dropped him and he left the room at vampire speed.
“Good riddance” I muttered as Pam closed the door behind my ex.
“Pam.” Eric ordered as he walked back towards me. “Have Compton followed.”
“Yes, Master.” She answered before swiftly leaving the room.
“Now, my child. We must go and introduce you to the masses.” He said as he stared down at me. “However, do not think I have forgotten your disobedience with Compton earlier.” I stiffened. “We will discuss it at home before the next sunrise.”
I knew I wouldn’t be lucky enough to get away with it, but I decided it was worth it. No matter what the punishment was, I got to punch Bill Compton. Twice. So, I accepted Eric’s words and nodded slowly, before following him out of the office.
The closer we got to the front of the bar, the more my senses were overloaded. The odor was repugnant as the smell of blood was overpowered by, and intertwined with, alcohol, body odor, several different colognes and perfumes, dirt, soap, and a multitude of other items. The thumping of the music overwhelmed the delicate sound of the human heartbeats and the air tasted stuffy and putrid.
“How do you stand this place?” I asked without thinking first.
Eric stopped in front of me and I was worried I had overstepped a rule. However, when he turned around he had a wry smirk on his face. “There are far worse places I’ve had to endure. You will get used to your senses feeling overloaded in public places. You will eventually be able to tune out any smells or sounds you don’t wish to focus on. It will come with practice.”
“Not soon enough.” I grumbled while crinkling my nose before noticing the sign for the women’s restroom. “May I clean myself up before we enter the bar?”
I dashed into the women’s room and was pleasantly surprised to find it empty. I took a couple moments to clean myself up from my earlier activities and then straightened my hair the best I could with my fingers. When I exited, Eric was standing in exactly the same place waiting for me.
He smiled for only a moment before putting his Sheriff’s mask back on. “Remember the rules.”
I steeled myself with a deep, unnecessary breath before replying with my required. “Yes, Eric.”
“Follow me.” He ordered before turning around to walk the rest of the way into the bar.
I looked around as I followed a few steps behind my Maker and I found Pam had been right about the size of the crowd. The couple of times I had been to Fangtasia, it had never been this busy. People were standing shoulder to shoulder near the bar, the dance floor was packed, and every chair and stool looked occupied.
Before we had made our way twenty feet across the floor of the bar, it seemed everyone noticed Eric’s presence and started to stare in silence.
I rolled my eyes. This was going to be excruciatingly embarrassing. I guess it was a good thing I couldn’t blush.
As we approached the raised stage where Eric’s throne sat, I cringed as I noticed my new throne sitting beside his. It was an exact match to his existing throne except it was smaller to fit my much slighter frame. I was glad Pam had thought to order a smaller throne because I would have looked ridiculous in one as big as Eric’s.
When we finally made our way onto the stage, Eric turned us around to face the crowd. I saw him nod towards the DJ and the music was instantly cut. I don’t think anyone noticed, however, because they all seemed to be staring at Eric or me or bouncing between the two of us.
“As many of you may have heard,” Eric began with his commanding Sheriff’s tone, “I have a new child. For the vampires here, know she is my bonded child.” I saw a few vampires stiffen at this news and I wondered at their reaction. “Therefore, all those who owe me fealty will honor her and protect her.” Eric seemed to scan the crowd and I noticed every vampire in the bar nod their head deeply in deference. “For the humans here, know I will not tolerate any disrespect of Ms. Stackhouse. You will treat her as you would me.”
As Eric took my hand and led me back to the thrones, some of the fangbangers began to mumble to their neighbors and their whispered words were as loud as their thoughts, but their thoughts were much bolder than they were willing to say aloud.
What’s a bonded child? How is that different?
Who would honor her? She’s a skank.
What makes her so special? I’m prettier than her.
I hope he doesn’t stop fucking us because of her. It’s not like he can feed from her anymore.
He was mine! How dare she take him? How dare he turn her?
I turned my head to find the woman behind the last set of thoughts as I wondered which fangbanger was delusional enough to think they could claim my Maker. She was fuming at the end of the bar as I observed her.
She was a pretty brunette with large breasts and a tiny waist. Her clothing was made for sin as the neckline on her dress plummeted almost to her navel, and the skirt barely covered her ass.
I heard from her head she had been with Eric many times. They had been together in his office, in the basement, and in the bar after closing. I instantly hated her with a burning passion. I had never felt so much hate for someone before and my thoughts were quickly becoming murderous.
“Sookie.” Eric’s commanding voice called to me and effectively brought me out of my violent thoughts for a moment.
“Yes, Eric.” I answered without looking towards him.
“Join me.” He ordered and I broke my stare at the bimbo to see he had gestured towards his lap.
I stood up and climbed into his lap, and instantly felt somewhat better. I wasn’t angry with him for having sex before me. I mean he is over a thousand years old for Pete’s sake. He had been with thousands of women and men. I was sure of that fact and I accepted it with as little jealousy as possible.
However, the fact that this slut thought he was hers made me unfailingly livid.
“You must calm down.” He breathed into my ear so no other vampire could hear. “I see what you are looking at and it was nothing but food and relief. She is nothing.”
“She thinks you are hers.” I hissed back in the softest voice possible.
“Ah.” He answered before kissing me lightly behind my ear. “But we know I am yours.”
My rapid – and unnecessary – breathing hitched at his words and I turned to face him with a brilliant smile. “Truly?”
“Master,” I heard a distinctly male voice call from behind me.
“Yes, Maxwell?” Eric answered coolly.
“I wish to congratulate you on your new bonded mate.” He said as he bowed his head.
Wait? What did he say? Mate?
Before I could say anything, however, Eric’s hand on my thigh tightened and I understood the warning.
Keep my mouth shut.
Eric nodded his acceptance of his underling’s words and Maxwell nodded to both of us before disappearing back into the crowd.
“Eric?” I asked as soon as we were alone again.
Speaking softly in my ear again, Eric explained quickly, “Bonded children are often referred to as mates in our world.”
I started to ask more questions but Eric sat up straighter and turned his attention back to the area in front of the dais, as another vampire came to congratulate him on his new child.
As every vampire in the place started to come forward, one at a time, I tuned out for a moment in order to think about what I had learned.
We were considered mates by other vampires.
Was this why he kept telling me he was mine?
He had told me his blood was mine, but I hadn’t truly considered the meaning of his words before now. He had told me I would be called Mistress by the vampires that reported to him, but I thought it was just another vampire rule. He had told me he was mine, but I didn’t completely accept it. A part of me, the insecure part, thought he was placating me.
Instead, I now find out about mates and how other vampires will see our relationship. With a shock, I realized Eric knew we would be called mates before he turned me.
I looked at him through the corner of my eyes and observed him acknowledging the last vampire to offer their congratulations.
He had known we would be mates and he offered to turn me and bond to me before we had even kissed. He had protected me, cared for me, and taught me from the beginning. He had made my turning as easy on me as he possibly could. He had ravished me many times like a starving man. He was constantly reminding me that I was his and he was mine.
All these things brought me to one conclusion; Eric wanted me as his mate from the beginning.
I could feel angry that he didn’t tell me about mates before now or I could feel manipulated that I was in this position without knowing beforehand. Instead, however, I felt cared for, desired, and euphoric.
He was mine.
As I came to this realization, Eric glanced down and caught my eye for a moment and I knew he felt my sudden rush of affection and happiness through our bond. Since we were still in front of the crowd, he couldn’t necessarily acknowledge my feelings, but he squeezed my thigh lightly, and it was enough.
With a small, secret smile on my face, I turned to observe the crowd again.
The first thing I noticed was the brunette bimbo from earlier. She was dancing in front of the dais behind where the vampires were coming to speak with Eric. She noticed me observing her and she sneered.
I smiled at her.
I had a plan.
“Eric?” I asked when the latest vampire stepped away.
“Can I learn to glamour?” I asked politely.
He smirked mischievously at me and I knew he had seen my interaction with his previous meal.
“Certainly.” He answered as he placed me back on my feet and grabbed my hand to lead me off the dais. As we passed the fangbanger, he ordered her to follow us and we made our way back to the office.
The moment we entered the office she walked forward with her hand out as if to touch his chest.
I grabbed her wrist before she ever had a chance of making contact.
“Don’t touch me.” The woman ordered before Eric took her away from me and sat her on a chair in front of his desk.
“Do not talk to my child.” He ordered with a growl. “You will sit here and remain quiet.”
“How could you turn her? What about me?” She whimpered. “We had a good time.”
Eric ignored her and turned to me. “Take a seat across from her and look deeply into her eyes.”
I followed his instructions and he crouched down behind me with his hands on my shoulders.
“What are you doing?” She asked while starting to stand up.
“Sit down.” Eric barked at her and she immediately followed his command. “Be good and help my new child learn.”
She started to say something else but Eric’s warning growl shut her up quickly.
“Now,” Eric whispered into my ear so the fangbanger couldn’t hear. “You must focus on pulling her control or presence of mind into yourself, so that you are in control. Do not push too hard or you will break her. Only pull on her mind slightly so that you can command her.”
I listened carefully to Eric’s words but they seemed so abstract and difficult. However, when I turned them over in my mind, I realized that I was used to hearing human’s thoughts and therefore this shouldn’t be too hard for me.
Reaching out with my telepathy, I heard her malicious thoughts and focused on them until I willed them to stop. I squinted slightly while her thoughts became quieter and quieter until they stopped.
“I did it.” I exclaimed when her thoughts stopped tumbling around in my head and she was staring off into space.
“You did.” He answered as he placed a small kiss on my neck and I could hear the pride in his voice. “Now, you need to give her a command. Focus on her mind’s presence and give your command to her stream of consciousness. Once you are done, withdraw slowly so that she doesn’t go into shock.”
Focusing back on the woman’s mind, I spoke clearly and evenly. “You have never had sex with, or been bitten by, Eric Northman. You have no interest in him or his new child.”
I felt Eric’s amusement at my command as I slowly withdrew from her thoughts and released her mind.
“Did it work?” I asked Eric.
“Ask her and see for yourself.”
Turning my attention back to the fangbanger, I asked her sweetly, “Honey, have you ever had sex with my Maker?”
She blanched before answering, “No.”
“Do you want to?” I pressed.
“No.” She answered quickly before adding, “No offense. You’re just not my type.”
“Woo Hoo!” I exclaimed as I jumped out of my seat and did a little dance.
The woman looked at me as if I’d lost my mind and Eric chuckled from behind me, but I didn’t care.
I had learned a new skill quickly and I’d shut up the woman’s awful thoughts. I was ecstatic.
“You are dismissed.” Eric ordered to the woman.
As soon as she closed the door behind her, I was kissing my Maker with gratitude and an extreme amount of passion.
I groaned when he pulled away after a couple of moments, but I was encouraged when he started kissing down my neck. “You need to feed again.”
Thinking of feeding made me remember our romp earlier in the office and I felt the lust spread through me quickly.
Eric obviously felt it too. “All in good time, Lover. First you must feed again. Would you like to select your own?”
I stiffened immediately and my lust dissipated as his words finally broke through my arousal.
I had to feed again. I had to bite another human again. Oh my god! I had bitten a human already!
“Sookie,” Eric chided me softly. “You’ve already done this once. You can’t allow yourself to become so upset every time. You must feed.”
“I know. It’s just . . . “
“Remember these humans are here because they want to be. No one is forcing them to be here.” He paused for a moment and studied me. “Perhaps it would be best if you picked your next meal. You can use their thoughts to make you feel less guilty because you will know they want you to feed from them.”
I thought about his words and his logic did make sense, but I wasn’t sure I could do it. Was it the thought of using a human as a meal that bothered me or the thought that I was using them against their will?
“Come.” He ordered.
My anxiety ratcheted up a notch as he approached the door and I felt him sending me calm through our bond.
“Eric.” I breathed.
“You can do this, Sookie.” He said sternly. “We will return to our places on the thrones and you can sift through their minds until you find one you want. If you do not choose one within ten minutes, then I will choose for you.”
“But . . . “ I started before he cut me off.
“You need to feed soon or you will be a danger to all the humans. Do you want that?” He asked me flatly.
“No! Of course not.”
“Then you will choose.” He said as he walked through the door. “Now, come.”
I followed Eric back through the bar and to the platform. When we sat back on our thrones, the throng of fangbangers started strutting in front of us again.
There families would be so ashamed.
“Sookie.” Eric called to me and then motioned to the crowd. I nodded to show that I understood and I dropped my shields.
I hope he chooses me.
I’m prettier than that slut they took back with them.
I don’t want to be here. I shouldn’t have accepted the dare.
I wonder what it feels like. Will it hurt?
I zeroed in on the last thought and found a petite woman with raven black hair sitting at a small table on the corner of the dance floor. She was dressed in all black but it wasn’t overly revealing. It was almost demure.
Why is she staring at me? Is she going to choose me? I hope she’ll be gentle. She thought. I heard it feels really good, but I don’t want sex with her. My boyfriend would be so upset if he knew I was here, but Melody said . . .
“Have you chosen someone?” Eric asked.
“Then let’s collect her shall we?” He said as he rose and offered me his hand.
The poor girl grew more and more nervous the closer we got to her. I almost changed my mind but Eric pushed more confidence through our bond and I was speaking before I thought any more about it.
“Would you like to come with us?” I asked when we stood in front of her.
“I . . .well . . .” She stammered.
“Only to be bitten by me. No sex.” I said quickly to calm her nerves.
Amazingly, that worked wonders as she smiled up at me and nodded.
Eric led the way back to his office and he instructed the girl, Shannon, to stand in front of me while he stood behind me. My fangs ran out the moment she turned away from me and my eyes settled on her neck, which was exposed due to her short hair.
“Sookie,” Eric whispered in my ear again, “I want you to try to consciously feed this time instead of letting your instincts take over. Try to hold back until you are ready.”
I nodded before he continued in his normal voice. “Now, wrap your right arm around her waist so she doesn’t fall and use your left hand to tilt her neck.”
I followed his instructions and found myself fighting the urge to bite quickly into her neck as I smelled her blood and heard her frantic heartbeat. She smelled much more appetizing than the woman from earlier.
“Lick the spot you want to bite slowly to make the vein pop out more. Then slowly sink your fangs into her neck.”
I leaned over the small woman and quickly licked her neck before pressing my fangs into her neck as slowly as I could handle since my control was slipping.
The explosion of blood in my mouth tasted so good I almost orgasmed immediately. Her taste was indescribable and I wanted as much of it as I could get. She was phenomenal.
I had taken several large gulps of her blood when I felt a tugging on my hair and I growled at the interruption.
“You must stop or you will kill her.” I heard from somewhere behind me but I didn’t pay the words any mind. I was in heaven.
Oh god. Am I going to die?
The thought hit me suddenly and I immediately retracted my fangs and stepped back away from her.
I could smell her tears.
“I’m so sorry. Did I hurt you?” I breathed out as my fangs snapped back into my gums.
“Please don’t hurt me.” She cried.
“I won’t.” I said as I stepped forward but she cried harder and stepped away so I paused in my approach.
“Shannon.” Eric called to the girl. “You were never in any danger. I could have commanded Sookie to stop. I only said you were in danger to see if she could stop on her own.”
“I wasn’t going to die?” She squeaked out.
“No. She didn’t take more than you could spare.”
I tapped into our bond and felt that he was telling the truth and I sighed in slight relief before I realized that she was still bleeding.
“I need to seal your wound.” I said gently.
She gulped. “Can he do it?”
I hung my head but Eric answered. “She won’t hurt you.”
She still seemed unsure but she nodded slowly. I approached her like I would a scared kitten and I shushed her along the way.
“It’s okay Shannon.” I cooed. “I won’t hurt you. I’m only going to lick your neck to heal the wound.”
As I leaned over her neck, my fangs automatically clicked down again and I struggled to control myself with her blood flowing freely in front of me. It took all my willpower to lick her lesion and back away.
“All better.” I smiled my “Crazy Sookie” smile.
She smiled back and apologized. “I’m sorry for freaking out. I’ve never done this before.”
“It’s okay. It’s only my second time.” I admitted.
“Wow. It didn’t hurt at all.” I felt a knot release in me at her words.
“Thank you for feeding me.” I saw Eric shake his head in disbelief at my words but I was a Southern woman and I would thank them for my meals.
“You’re welcome.” She said shyly as Eric opened the door and motioned for her to leave.
When the door was closed, Eric turned to me with a smile. “You did very well.”
“I would have drained her if you weren’t here and I hadn’t heard her think she was going to die!” I said dejectedly.
“Sookie,” He said calmly. “She was an AB- human. They are one of the rarest and best tasting types. She was extremely clean and untouched by another vampire. If you had even an inch of control with her as your second human, then a normal fangbanger should be much easier.”
“Really?” I asked with a bit more hope.
I paused for a moment before I let myself reminisce. “She did taste fantastic.”
Eric smiled brilliantly at me before stepping forward to pull me into his embrace and kissing me with all his thousand years of experience. When he pulled away, he was still smiling, “I am very proud of you.”
“Thank you.” I smiled back before asking. “Can we go home now?”
“Yes.” He answered before calling for Pam.
When she came into the room, she immediately grinned at me with fangs. “For a newborn, you have good taste. She smelled delectable.”
Deciding to go with the flow, I simply agreed. “She was divine.”
“Pam.” Eric said as he closed up his laptop. “We are leaving for the night. Ensure that everyone knows we will not open until Midnight tomorrow night. The Magister is due to arrive at ten. We will meet you here at nine.”
“See you tomorrow, Pam.” I called as we left the office.
“Master?” Pam called.
Eric looked back at her.
“I think you should buy me some shoes to make it up to me.” She drawled with one hand on her hip.
“What exactly?” He challenged her with a raised eyebrow.
We both laughed as we exited Fangtasia and we didn’t stop until we were in the Corvette.
“I wonder how long she’ll stay bitter about it.” I said as we drove through the streets of Shreveport.
“I predict she will never truly get over it.” He chuckled slightly. “She was still using it as a way to get what she wanted before she ever had a sister that could fly.”
I chuckled slightly but was unsurprised since Pam seemed to be quite spoiled. We continued on in a comfortable silence until we pulled into the garage and entered the living room.
“You know you still have a punishment to receive.” Eric stated casually as we sat down in the leather chairs.
I hated those chairs. Always bad news.
I swallowed unnecessarily. “Yes, Eric.”
“You understand I do not enjoy punishing you.” I nodded. “However, you must learn control or it could cost us both our lives.”
“He insulted you.” I tried to defend myself.
“So will many others.” He chastised me. “We may be in the presence of more powerful vampires when it happens again and you cannot take on the world. There is a time and place for everything.”
I nodded before stating, “I understand.”
He sighed and it was a strange thing to see as I realized he normally didn’t have human mannerisms.
The act made me realize I wasn’t going to like what was coming.
“As you know, silver burns vampires.” I stiffened with fear. “Nothing else I can use on you would do more than sting for a moment. Your punishment is one slap on the offending hand with a silver rod. You will heal quickly but the punishment should be a reminder the next time you feel the need to lash out.”
“Eric . . .” I pleaded.
“Stay strong, Sookie.” He said with steel in his eyes and I felt his strength and resolve through the bond. Suddenly, I realized he would feel my punishment as well.
Somehow, knowing this made me feel better able to take the punishment he had prescribed.
“Where will we go?” I asked with an unsteady voice.
“Here.” He said before stepping out of the room at vampire speed and coming to stand in front of me. “Are you ready?”
“Just get it over with.” I said as I held up my right hand.
Before the dread could build in me any further, he turned my palm so that it was facing towards the ceiling and brought the silver rod in his gloved hand down across my hand.
It felt like I had placed my hand on the burner of the stove and left it there until my flesh started to boil. It was stinging, burning, and unbelievably painful. I had never felt anything as painful and I felt the blood tears running down my face as I gripped my hand to my chest. It was as red and blistered as a third degree burn on a human.
What would it be like to have silver touch my body for more than a second?
“Shhh.” Eric soothed me and I realized I was now sitting on his lap on the couch. “You did well tonight and I am so proud of you, Lover. You will heal quickly and it will be over.”
Eric rocked me slowly and smoothed my hair, as I continued to cry and watched in amazement as my blisters started to disappear and the redness of my skin started to fade. In all, it was probably over within five minutes.
When the pain finally subsided, I looked up at Eric sheepishly to see he was looking at me with concern.
It occurred to me that he was worried about how I would react to him after such a horrible punishment.
As he carried me to our room and started the shower for us, I thought back on his actions.
Part of me wanted to be angry he had hit me. If I were still human, I would find it abusive and degrading. Somehow though, I understood the difference in this part of being a vampire. It wasn’t the same as being a human in a human relationship. Eric was trying to teach me so that we survived in a dangerous and violent world. He was protecting me.
It would be hard to explain to a human and I in no way would support domestic violence, but this was so different from a human relationship or human rules.
I was a vampire and I was punished as a vampire.
I had to accept it.
Suddenly I realized I was being wrapped in a big fluffy towel and Eric had already bathed us. I had been lost in my own thoughts while he was left to wonder about my reaction.
I kissed him softly before pulling back, “I understand you are protecting me by teaching me. It’s okay.”
I felt his tension release as he stroked a finger down my cheek. “You really are impressive, Lover. I expected you to hate me.”
“I’ll never hate you.” I whispered back.
I pulled him down to kiss him again, before jumping up and wrapping my legs around him instead of arguing with him.
I spent the rest of the night showing him how much I didn’t hate him.