The Big Bang- Ballroom Blitz: Part 1
Sookie’s dress for the evening conjured images from their riding the storm the previous evening. It was strapless, and to the floor in shades of midnight blue, violet and gray melded together perfectly. If her eyes light up tonight she will appear the storm incarnate, he thought as he admired her. Unconsciously, he inhaled and felt comforted that she smelled like him not admitting to himself that this was driven from a place of wanting no other to touch her. Such a thing would be ridiculous, she was the Queen of Oklahoma, and he had no say so on who or what she did.
Keep telling yourself that. Maybe you will believe it eventually.
She sat down on the sofa, throwing her previously discarded sweater to the floor and motioned for him to come sit beside her. “You have questions. Let’s start there, time is short and we have much to cover before we go down.”
“Why am I not overwhelmed with your fairy scent?” She smiled.
“My magic is protecting you from that.”
“Protecting me? Don’t you mean protecting you?”
“No, I mean what I say. I know that you have no control over your responses so I warded the house, which protected John and Preston tonight. I have the ability to mask my own scent, it is a trait inherent in my family.” She stopped here and reached for her purse. “However, there will be fairies here tonight and I can’t ward the hotel. So, take this.” She pulled a large gold ring from her purse. In the center of it was a large sapphire that seemed to catch the light in an odd way. “This ring will protect you from being overwhelmed, while still allowing you to use your senses to detect fairies. All others will smell as they normally do.” He took it from her and looked at it oddly. It was a very large ring, clearly made for a man and he wondered who it had belonged to before. “I had it made for you, Eric.” He slipped it onto his index finger on his right hand and admired the perfect fit and the way the stone seemed to dance in the light.
“We will have to start getting you used to fairy scent gradually. My magic might fail when I am…when it weakens and I don’t want you at risk with nothing to fall back on.” She doesn’t want me at risk? She made a face and he felt a flash of anger though their tie.
“That leads me to the next thing we need to discuss. Clearly there is some confusion over your place in this new world.” It wasn’t a question, she heard his inner dialog of doubt and uncertainty like a voice in her own mind now. “You are my lover, my protector and my friend. Do you understand?”
“I introduced you the Captain of my Guard tonight and told him that he was to take your requests as he took mine. Did that not make it clear?”
“No,” he answered again, needing her to say it clearly so that there would be no confusion.
“You are, in addition to those other things I just named, my Royal Consort.” He blinked.
“What are the rest of the Fae going to say about that?”
“Who gives a fuck? Oklahoma is mine. You are mine. I trust you. They can fuck off.” He felt his pride swell at her claim.
“Does that mean that you are mine?” he asked barely above a whisper.
“Will you have me, Eric?” He moved to her and kissed her to convey his answer. From the breathless reaction to that kiss she knew his answer was yes. “G-good,” she stuttered, quite unlike her usual confident self, as she recovered from his answer.
“What does a Royal Consort do in the Royal Court, my Queen?”
“Pretty much whatever he damn well pleases. I would have introduced you as such to Preston tonight if we had already spoken of the matter. I didn’t want to presume.” He laughed now, unable to contain it when faced with the ridiculousness of her statement.
“You didn’t want to presume. Right. Did Appius know you wanted me to be your Consort?” She smiled a bitter smile then.
“You already know the answer to that. He never would have let you come if he had known there was anything other than pain waiting for you’re here, let alone send you himself.”
“So, what did you tell him to get him to send me?”
“I told him that I was addicted to vampire blood, and I wanted to keep you like a fine vintage, wrapped in silver so that I could drink my fill every night.” Eric’s eyebrows went up.
“He should have been able to tell that there was no blood in you.”
“Yes and you should be overwhelmed with fairy scent. I am not some withering little girl afraid to do what needs to be done. I don’t know what kind if spineless women you have been saddled with in the past but I am strong enough to do what needs to be done and have no regrets. I am like you.” He blinked. Where had he gotten the idea that she was weak? Was it because she was kind and soft with him? Had he let his judgment get so far askew. He remembered who she was as a tactic to keep himself at bay, but now that he understood his role he had placed her on the shelf labeled foolish and weak. How had that happened? Clearly, he needed to get his head out of his ass.
She smiled, and nodded gently in agreement, but was kind enough not to rub it in.
“Ok, bullet points for tonight. This is a charity affair for my company Brigant Industries. Tonight you will meet the executives that lead that company. I will introduce you as my date for the evening. The humans will simply find you handsome, the other supernaturals here will know that you are vampire. I am sure that they will try and have their say about that, and I intend to tell them to fuck off.” He smiled now, looking forward to that. “Also,” she started sounding less sure, ” I expect Mississippi, and Nevada to be here to press their suits. It is imperative that you let me handle them. You are MY Royal Consort, and as such you hold sway in Oklahoma, but not with other Royalty.” She reached for his hand then and laced her fingers with his.
“Don’t get me wrong, I would go to war for you, in a heartbeat. I would burn this fucking hotel to a cinder and roll in their ashes with glee, but I don’t want to if I don’t have to. I don’t want to pick a fight. You can protect me if it becomes physical, as you are also my protector, but if all they are packing is words and arrogance, let me handle it.” She leaned in and kissed him softly then. “I know from stories of you that you can be a bit of reactionary. I can’t stress the importance of this enough.”
“I am not a child either, Sookie.” He sounded a little gruffer than he meant to but he understood. He didn’t need to warned like this.
“Of course, I am sorry, Eric. I just worry for your safety. These people can be vicious and they will try and provoke you deliberately.”
“I understand, Sookie, really I do.” She took a breath to speak again and then changed her mind, nodding.
“Any other questions before we go down?” He hesitated.
“I do have some other things we need to discuss, but it can wait until the dragons are slain,” he winked at her.
“Ok, then one last thing. Before we go down, I want you to drink. I suspect that they will try and spell your blood if you partake in their presence, so I don’t want you to have anything at the party. In fact, if you don’t mind, I would prefer that you always drink exclusively from me.” She glanced up to see his reaction before pressing on. “I will keep a supply of donor blood for you in case of emergency but the only source I think we can truly trust is me. Is that ok?”
“That is better than ok, my lover. Your blood is exquisite, even with the magic to dull the taste and the effects. I am honored.” Sliding closer and gently guiding his head to her neck, she whispered into his shoulder.
“As am I, Eric.”
All heads turned to them when they entered the ballroom arm in arm. They stopped, heads held high as they stared them down, daring them to give voice to their thoughts. No one did, but Eric felt her rage pass through him and knew that she was hearing what they had to say anyway. He leaned down and whispered in her ear an effort to distract her.
“And the man at the back said, “Everyone attack”
And it turned into a ballroom blitz”
She burst out into giggles, causing everyone to look at them again. This time they saw her looking up at him adoringly as she volleyed right back.
“And the girl in the corner said, “Boy, I wanna warn ya”
It’ll turn into a ballroom blitz“
He smiled down at her then and all the tension they had been carrying for the evening ahead of them floated away. No matter what happened, they had each other’s back. “Care to dance, Majesty?” He led her onto the floor and pulled her close as they swayed to the music.
Can you hear me, Sookie?
There are two other vampires here and busload of fairies. I think I also sense a demon.
“My lawyer is the last, not sure about the first. That is unexpected.”
Why aren’t they attacking? Do they have rings?
“They have something.” She grew quiet then and he knew she was listening. He watched carefully as other couples moved around them and again, looked for strategic exit points. He saw various reactions to them around the room. The humans admired the handsome couple openly, while fairies looked disgusted and angry at seeing her in his arms. Fuck them, he thought, echoing Sookie from earlier as he instinctively pulled her closer to his large frame. “They are gone.” He reached out confirming her declaration. He saw the fairy approaching them but before he could warn her he felt her stiffen in his arms telling him she already knew.
“Majesty, may I cut in?” She turned to face the fairy and Eric took the opportunity to look him over from head to toe. Even he had to admit the man was beautiful. Dark hair, dark eyes, a beard, he was the same height as Eric and he could tell that under the thousand dollar tuxedo was a frame that would rival his own. Jealousy rose up in him demanding that he take action and sweep his Queen away rather than let this fairy touch her. Hearing his thoughts , Sookie reached out and placed her hand on Eric’s arm, disguising it a casual gesture rather than a calming one.
For the first time she wished he could read her thoughts as well. She was not interested in this fairy, any more than she was any other. There was protocol to consider though, and she had warned him about that before they came down. She loved his wildness, and his untamed animalistic nature, but it would not serve them well here. She suspected that was the point. This was just the first volley of trying and trip them up. Taking a breath, she knew she would have to trust him. He could take care of himself after all.
“Eric, allow me to introduce Alcide Herveaux, The King of Nevada.”