Chapter 5 – Oh Brother! (and your family)
Eric and Sookie were inseparable and spent time together every day over the next week. A highlight of the week for both of them was their dance lessons. They’d booked private lessons for the first few weeks; then planned to add in some group classes and outings to get used to dancing with others. They quickly realized that their shared love of music, and dancing as an extension, was a core part of their relationship.
While Eric’s walking was improved from his time at the inpatient rehab center, he still had a limp so he spent his days with a physical therapist while Sookie continued her work at the Will’s Eye and her other therapy groups.
Travel time for work gave Sookie a great opportunity to think about her relationship with Eric. Mostly, she realized, she didn’t want to spend any days apart. Those thoughts excited and scared her at the same time. She was a twenty nine year old virgin in her first relationship. “Are these feelings just some first – time love thing? Is it really love or lust?” Every time she had one of these relationship panics, she managed to calm herself. The connection she had to Eric was beyond their physicality; she felt complete with him and he expressed feeling the same with her.
Sometimes her thoughts during her drive time backfired on her. Being with Eric had awakened new physical desires and she often relived their make out sessions as she drove. Though they hadn’t gone any further than kissing and ‘over clothes’ groping, Sookie’s yearnings grew with each encounter. Between spending the evenings wrapped together, the dance lessons and then her alone time with her erotic thoughts, Sookie felt like a tightly wound spring and she was more than ready for the coil to release.
She was having more of those thoughts as she cleared the table from the dinner she and Eric cooked for Ella and Jason while Michelle was working late. That Eric fit in with her family immediately, was yet more proof that they were meant to be together.
Actually, Eric had become Ella’s new favorite adult and the two were currently playing while Jason ran an errand. Unable to resist the giggling from the living room, Sookie stopped washing the dishes to go see what Ella and Eric were doing. Ella was positioned with her hands on her hips while Eric was pleading his case on their planned activity. “Why am I always the minion Ella? You’re shorter than me.”
“I’m a dirl. I havta play Agnes. And,” She held up the stuffy in her arms. “I have a fwuffy unicorn.”
Eric walked to the small office Sookie had on the ground floor and returned with the unicorn Sookie won for him at the church fair. “I have one too.” He put his arm out so the unicorn was close to Ella’s face. “See!”
Ella was ahead of him though. “Dat can be the one dat gets fwide by the waser in the movie.” Ella paused for a moment and turned her head to the side. “Why you wak funny?”
Sookie panicked for a second, thinking Eric didn’t want to talk about his injury, but he answered Ella honestly. “You see that scar?” After pulling one leg of his shorts up, he pointed to the line on his thigh. Ella leaned over and gazed at the mark. “I got wounded here the same time my eyes were hurt.”
Ella looked up with wide eyes and asked. “I touch it?”
Eric nodded and took her hand so she could run her finger along the scar. “When you wak better?”
For Ella, just like that, the chat about his leg was over so she tugged on his arm. “’Member siwwy, you kneel to be smaller like a minion.”
With that, Eric got down on his knees and Sookie returned to the kitchen so she could laugh without getting in trouble.
Later, Jason retuned to take Ella home to bed and Eric joined Sookie in the kitchen. As they put away the last of the pots, Eric talked about another ‘official’ date for the next night. Sookie asked for something simple, normal. “A movie?” She pulled up a movie app on her phone. “Oooh, Star Trek Beyond? Can we see that?”
“A Trekkie?” He asked while his eyebrow was raised. “My girlfriend is a Trekkie?”
Sookie put the phone down and raised her head in challenge. “She is, or rather, I am.” Knowing he was teasing her, she pushed back. “What are you going to do about it?”
The way he moved to her could only be described as stalking his prey. When he reached her, he raised her onto the counter and gave her a breathtaking kiss. “I can’t do anything about it Sweetheart. With you, resistance is futile.”
She gasped at his words. “You’re a Trekkie too! You faker!” She shook her head as she admonished him.
“Busted. I love Star Trek and Star Wars. Especially some of the costumes.” He waggled his eyebrows and she caught on immediately.
“You can forget a Princess Leia slave outfit, or the donuts on the side of my head buddy.”
“You’re right. You’re more of a ‘Seven of Nine’. Can we get some borg implants?”
She giggled at his playfulness. “Honey, let’s hold off on role play for now? We still have plenty on the menu before we get there.”
He scooped her off the counter and took her to the sofa. “And what’s on the menu for tonight?”
“Definitely kisses.” She leaned up to kiss him on the mouth, then under his chin, and finally she took some nips along his throat. When he groaned at her action, she knew she was doing something right and her confidence grew. She reached to grab his hands from her waist and kissed them. “I want these hands to touch me,“ she paused and her face was full of mischief. ”To boldly touch me where no man has gone before.” They had a laughing fit at her Star Trek reference before he ‘engaged’.
After a few minutes of making out, Sookie leaned back and pulled on Eric’s arms. “What’s the matter Sweetheart?” He asked.
“Nothing, I just want … I mean I was thinking …” She looked down while she spoke but got the request out. “I wanted to take off your shirt.”
Eric’s smile was huge. “Oh, I like that.”
He leaned forward and reached for the hem but she batted his hands away and asked, “Can I do it?”
He nodded then asked, “Can I do the same to you?” She bit her lip and nodded slowly. “Is there anything else on the menu for tonight?” He realized he sounded like a hound dog and back pedaled. “I’m not pushing for more, I want to be sure I don’t do more than you intend.”
She stopped removing his shirt and took a moment to compose her answer. “Eric… Honey.” She took a big breath. “This week when I’ve been driving…” She paused and looked down.
Gently, he touched her chin and tilted her head up so they could make eye contact. When he saw her beautiful blue eyes, he mumbled a ‘that’s better’ under his breath. “What’s been happening when you drive? You can tell me anything you know.”
“I know, but all this relationship stuff is new to me.” She took a deep breath to continue. “You see, when I drive, I think. Well, I’m sure everyone does.” She added with a chuckle. “Anyway, since we’ve been ah… more physical this past week, my thoughts often go to our encounters.”
After giving her a soft kiss, he smiled and told her, “I relive the encounters as well. It’s been a hard and then self-satisfying week.”
“Naughty.” Knowing his meaning, that he’d taken his situation into his own hands, should have embarrassed her, but she felt comfortable with his admission. Though she did chuckle at his pun before going back to her business. “You kinda hit the nail on the head though, I’m not really satisfied.” His trademark eyebrow rose up in question. “I’m burning up.”
“You ah… you don’t?” Obviously, she’d confused him.
“I’m a virgin, not a saint. I have taken care of myself before but I’ve decided to hold off and experience everything now with you. The problem is, I’m going to explode if I don’t get some relief.” His mouth fell open while he processed her words. “I want you to help me tonight. Can you do that and keep my skirt on?”
He couldn’t control his grin, so he gave up trying when he answered her. “Most certainly. I am at your service.” His eyes landed on the fire place. “I have an idea.” He laughed, “Actually, I’ve had this idea since seeing your fireplace.”
Guessing he meant to light the fireplace she looked at him as though he was insane. “Honey, it’s still like 70 degrees out tonight.”
“I know, but I’ve thought this through.” He explained that he wanted to overcool the house with the air conditioner, and then start a fire. So after she set the air conditioner to freezing, she ran to get some quilts to make a comfy palette on the floor. By the time she returned, Eric was already stacking wood in the fireplace. With flair, he struck a match and lit the paper he’d crumbled at the bottom.
“You knew where the wood pile was?”
He nodded, “Saw it the first night I was over here when I chatted with Jason on the back porch.” He moved to help her spread out the quilts and added, “Told you I’ve been thinking about this.”
They moved together on the pile of quilts and joined first at the lips then pulled each other closer. As she wanted to, Sookie pulled Eric’s shirt off and backed up to admire his chest. “You’re gorgeous Eric.” She caressed him from the neck down and when she glanced further, she could see his erection had grown. To her, it looked barely contained in the shorts.
He reached out to the hem of her shirt and she lifted her arms, giving him permission to remove it as they’d discussed. He raised one eyebrow in question when his work wasn’t done. “What’s with all the tank tops you always wear?”
She mumbled out her response. “It’s the tank top conspiracy, I’ll explain it later. Right now, you need to get back to work taking it off.”
His perplexed expression was immediately replaced with lust when she ordered him to take off another layer of clothing. He licked his lips, responded “Gladly,” and got back to work. She hadn’t said anything about her bra, so with shaky hands, she reached back and unclasped the garment and it started to fall from her shoulders. The look of awe on Eric’s face would stay with her forever.
Eric couldn’t believe how suddenly bold Sookie was being and he could only stare as her bra straps fell and the cups started to drop from her breasts. He’d felt her breasts during their make out sessions but was still shocked to see them uncovered. Hesitantly, he reached out a hand to touch one and Sookie gasped at the contact then leaned in to him so more of his hand covered her. “You’re beautiful.” He told her. To emphasize his meaning, he caressed the other breast and looked her in the face. “Perfect even. I’m so lucky you’re mine.”
Her eyes were glazed over when she looked up from his chest, but kept her hand on it. “I’m the lucky one, Eric. I mean, look at this chest!” She leaned in and moved her head down. “I feel compelled to lick it.”
He groaned as her tongue came out and ran a path from his collar bone to his left nipple. From her actions, you’d never know that Sookie was inexperienced with men. She had him ready to come from her exploration. As he was about to suggest she bite him, she did so on her own while placing her knee between his legs, adding a delicious pressure. Her actions earned her a growl from his chest. “Sookie, you’re going to make me come.”
She gasped for breath and whispered, “I though that’s what we wanted.”
“I want to see you come. I want to touch you.” His hand started trailing up her leg and under her jean skirt. Keeping the skirt on and having plenty of fun was going to be no problem for Eric and he took a moment to silently thank God that Sookie liked sundresses and skirts. He reached her panties and slid one finger along the leg opening. Her body jolted from the contact but she leaned into him silently telling him to continue. Eric could feel her heartbeat matching his; fast and excited. Their breaths were pants as he kept moving his fingers along her panties. After Sookie gave out a deep moan and he thought she was close he asked her, “Spread your legs for me.”
She complied and he had to help steady her as the pleasure had her losing the ability to stay upright. Eric couldn’t wait to see her explode before him and he thought the rubbing he was doing against one of her thighs would help him finish as well. He snuck one finger under her panties and was about to take her over the edge when he heard footsteps and yelling.
“SOOKIE! YOU A’RIGHT?”
He recognized Jason’s voice right away and had a split second to compose himself before he leapt at Jason to kill him for interrupting. He wasn’t the only angry one though.
“JASON! What the FUCK are you doin’? You cain’t just walk in ma house anymore!”
Stupidly, Jason approached Sookie. “Sookie, I’m checkin’ up on ya. I saw smoke.” He looked around. “I mean, whatcha doin’ wi the fireplace going in summer?”
Eric decided to shut down Jason. He turned over his shoulder; still holding Sookie to keep her breasts covered and spoke. “Jason, what we were doing is personal. Right now, can we get some privacy and maybe we can talk about this more over the weekend?” He dug deep for the next statement, “I appreciate that you care about Sookie enough to check on her but I think we’ll need to come up with some kind of sign so you can be sure she’s safe without barging in.”
“A sign for what? ‘Fshe’s in trouble, she cain’t give me a sign.”
Sookie huffed before answering him in an angry voice Eric hadn’t heard her use on Jason yet. “GOOD LORD JASON! We were ‘getting it on’ and he’s saying we’ll hang a sock on the door or something so you won’t come in!”
Eric watched as understanding finally crept into Jason’s thick skull. He’d been so concerned about Sookie being hurt that he hadn’t picked up the signs on what was really happening. The fear for Sookie’s wellbeing was replaced with a look of sheer stupidity then an angry grimace coupled with his blood rushing to his face followed. “Ya mean you were … I … Sookie was…?” He paced around once then threw his arms up. “Right here in the livin’ room?” He turned and headed to the couple still bound together to protect Sookie’s modesty. “Ya only been on one date!”
Eric interjected; he wanted the count of dates to be correct. “We went to brunch after Mass and I took her to dinner Tuesday.” He turned back to her and smiled. “That’s three dates.”
Sookie looked at Eric like he was retarded for getting into that detail but didn’t correct him. Instead, she yelled at her brother. “JASON! Didn’t Eric ask you to leave?” She pointed in the direction of the door. “I mean, I’m pretty sure you killed the possibility of us resuming our fun and games, but I still want you to go so I can put a shirt on.”
Jason’s mouth bobbed opened and closed a few times before he turned and left.
Sookie and Eric burst out laughing. At first they had been angry, and to an extent they still were, but the look on Jason’s face was priceless. Sookie was almost out of breath from laughing so hard. When she could speak she said, “Eric, he really had no idea what was happening when he walked in.”
“I know. Did you see the light bulb go off?” She nodded and he took her by the shoulders. “Clearly, you were the only Stackhouse child to receive the brilliant genes.”
“He has his moments of smart.” Eric raised his eyebrow at her defense for her brother. “It’s that the dumb as a rock moments tend to outnumber them. I know this.”
Reluctantly, Eric reached for Sookie’s shirt to help her cover up and said, “I guess I’ll head home since you have work in the morning.”
Sookie surprised him instead by saying, “Would be nice to snuggle in bed though.” She leveled a stare at him. “If you can behave.”
Eric was reeling on the inside. Of course he would behave because holding her all night was a gift he couldn’t believe she was offering. He told her how he felt. “I’d love to spend the night wrapped up in each other. Thank you.”
“It’s for both of us. I’ll call it a consolation prize.”
Forgoing a verbal response, he picked her up bridal style and ran up the stairs, pausing only to let her grab his shirt from the floor at her request. When he asked about the shirt, she responded coyly, “You’ll see;” then she ran to her bathroom to get ready. When she emerged, he actually dropped his phone at the shock of seeing her in his shirt and glasses. Until then, he hadn’t known she wore glasses. Seeing his gaze, she fidgeted with the frames explaining that she could wear her contacts to bed, but she didn’t like doing that and she knew he’d need to see her in the glasses at some point.
Based on her babbling, he felt her nerves were in control so he helped by telling her, “I love you with glasses or without.” He moved to take her in his arms, “In fact, I’m going to need to calm down in the bathroom from seeing you like this. You’re so sexy; I might not be able to control myself.”
Sookie was already in the bed when he emerged from his nighttime prep. One look at him had her blushing. “Now it’s my time to wonder if I can behave. You in boxers?” She shook her head. “Almost too much honey.”
“We’re going to be good as per our original agreement.” He said as he got under the covers.
She giggled. “Yes dear, but I want cuddling.”
“Of course.” He said as he moved closer to her. “Can I ask you a question though?” She nodded and he continued. “What is the tank top conspiracy?”
Sookie’s face turned serious as she explained. “Well, I believe that the markup on tank tops must be huge. Clothing manufacturers continue to make the fabric of tops too thin to wear without a tank top, but the price of clothing is still going up. I think it’s all a conspiracy to require ladies to purchase two shirts for every outfit; the tank and whatever shirt you really wanted.”
He looked at her and waited for the laugh or smirk to say she was joking, but he never got it. “You’re serious about this?”
“Yes, and I have a drawer of tank tops to prove it.”
“I don’t have anything to say about that, so I’ll move onto setting my alarm.” He grabbed his phone. “What time do we need to be up?”
Her smile was radiant. “Late! We don’t need to leave for the hospital until 11:00 for your doctor’s appointment and my first patient.”
Joining in on the good news, he offered. “Breakfast in bed it is! I’ll cook.”
“Will you make bacon?” He nodded as they pulled up the covers. She smiled and told him. “See, you are perfect. Just like I’ve been saying.”
He chuckled, “Bacon makes me perfect?” He gave her a peck on the forehead. “That’s too easy.”
The next morning, Eric arrived in the bedroom carrying a tray of breakfast food. He hated to wake Sookie, but it was going on 9:00 AM and they did need to get ready for the day. Before calling her name, he placed the tray on the bench Sookie had at the foot of the bed and grabbed his phone to take some pictures. Seeing her with her curls fanned out on the pillow and the innocent look on her face, he’d decided turnabout was fair play. After all, she had taken pictures of him sleeping in Ella’s room. These images would be very different though, much sexier. A sudden motion on the bed drew him out of his thoughts and he groaned. She’d turned and kicked most of the blankets away leaving one leg uncovered. Knowing it was the perfect opportunity, he snapped a few images. Her groggy voice stopped him. “My panties better not be showing.” Then before he could say anything, she sat up and added. “I smell bacon.”
Sookie praised his cooking skills while they shared the plate of eggs and bacon he’d prepared. The breakfast quickly became more than about food. He’d only brought one fork so he could feed her and he took the time to kiss her between bites. When they finished, Sookie told him to take the first shower and she would clean up breakfast, though he suggested they shower at the same time and she refused.
Not even a pout worked to change her mind.
When he was showered, he headed to the kitchen, wearing only the shorts he’d had on the day before. Sookie had loaded the dishwasher and was hand washing the pans. Eric joined her at the sink, as he’d done the night of their first date, and wrapped his arms around hers to take the pot from her hands. “You know,” He finished the pot and put it on the draining rack; “We never finalized what we’re doing tonight.”
“The new Star Trek movie I thought.”
Eric recalled her use of Star Trek lingo from the night before and it reminded him that they’d been interrupted. He pressed closer to her and started nuzzling her neck. When Sookie tried turning to face him, he held her still. “What are you doing?”
“We have time to finish what we started last night.” His hands started leaving a trail of water as he moved from her thighs to his target between her legs.
He knew she was on board when she breathed out her response. “What we started?” She gasped when one of his hands made it to her panties. “Oh. Ah, if … if you’re sure we have time.”
“I’m sure. “ He kissed the side of her neck while his other hand started squirreling its way down her front. He reached a nipple and smirked when she gasped as he tweaked it. “You like that?” She moaned out a positive noise so he kept going, this time dipping his fingers into her panties. “Now I know you liked it, you’re ready. I can feel it.”
She shifted her hips to open herself more to him and he took the invitation to start rubbing her in earnest. The action awarded him with a deep moan as she bent her knees for a second before she regained her composure. “Eric. Oh … ah, that’s yeah.”
He smirked knowing he’d rendered her speechless and continued his play time using both hands to bring her closer to her finish. While he worked, Sookie turned her head to the side to engage him in a deep kiss, but she only lasted a few seconds before the tension snapped. She pulled away from his lips to scream his name but she stopped as she saw her sister-in-law walking up to the kitchen door, the all-glass kitchen door. Eric was wrapped around Sookie, with one arm down the front of her nightshirt, and the other in her pants.
Bug-eyed would be the only word to describe Michelle’s face as she took in the scene and Eric closed his eyes in an attempt to calm down. When he felt like he could speak he said, “I’m putting a moat around the house.”
The next few weeks were full of more dates, dance lessons, and playing their instruments together. After being cleared to drive, Eric made his trip to Pittsburgh and returned with his classic Corvette, some of his favorite items from his house, and his beloved piano. It didn’t take much encouragement on Eric’s part to get Sookie reacquainting herself with her violin. After a few lessons, she was able to start playing her violin with Eric on the piano. It proved to be one more area where they fit together.
Their physical relationship had grown as well. By September, Sookie and Eric had progressed to sleeping together most nights. Though they hadn’t fully consummated their relationship, Sookie grew comfortable with full nudity and just about every non-intercourse sexual act there was. Eric was taking Sookie’s lead on their next steps, and he’d wait as long as she wanted, but he knew the wait would be over soon. Sookie enjoyed the physical relationship too much to hold out very long.
Over those same weeks, Sookie made some decisions about her work. Her relationship with Eric was too important to squeeze in between patients, so she needed to make some changes. She earned more than enough money with her position at the hospital and the other counseling groups she did outside Wills Eye Hospital, so she was able to cut back. The question was where to make the cuts. In the end, she turned her on-staff position at Wills into an on-call role and consultant as needed; then she rescheduled her evening counseling sessions to one night a week. It was a long night, covering three meetings in a four hour period, but the schedule gave her the free-time she needed to enjoy her time with family, friends and Eric.
Eric was making changes to his career as well. The physical therapy was slowing down, and his limp was hardly noticeable. This improvement enabled him to begin the meetings and phone calls needed to plan his retirement. Based on his current enlistment dates and leave, he’d be retired at the end of the year. Knowing his retirement date, he’d also started his job hunt. He hoped to start teaching at a Philadelphia area college for the spring semester, so he poured himself into his CV, phone calls, and other networking while Sookie worked.
To begin working on his retirement, he’d visited a local office to complete paperwork one day and quickly befriended the Marine running the location. A few weeks later, the Marine officer approached Eric about a recruiting event; inviting Eric to join him in representing the Marines at a local high school. Though he would miss a Saturday with Sookie, he agreed to serve. Having been in civilian clothes for months, he was pleased to put on his Service Uniform for the day and Sookie snapped several pictures of him in his olive and khaki outfit. “If you only knew what seeing you in uniform was doing to me.”
The comment was innocent but his reaction was not. The next photo she took was of his slack jawed face before he growled out. “I’ll get out the dress blues when I come home since I’m getting such a reaction from olive and khaki.”
Sookie could only whimper in reaction.
Before he left, he asked about her plans for the day. With a bright smile, she explained that with the hot September day and bright sun, she had decided to sunbathe. Her first laser treatment for her face was scheduled for later that month, and once she had that, she would need to stay out of the sun as she healed. “I figure it’s my last chance to soak up the rays.”
“So I’m going to be meeting with a bunch of teenagers and talking about life in the Marines while you’re here at home in a bikini?” Eric had seen her in bikinis before, since she did love the sun, he didn’t like missing the chance.
“Yes sir, soaking up the rays and listening to a book.”
He growled and warned her, “I’m coming straight for you in the backyard when I get back.”
He was sure she knew her next words were torture when she added, “Good thing I have a privacy fence around the back yard.”
He growled again as he walked out the door.
As promised, when Eric returned he went directly to Sookie’s house and to the back gate. At first, he peaked over the top of the fence and smiled. She was on her back and the straps of her top were pulled down to prevent tanning lines. The fence was indeed tall enough to offer plenty of privacy, at 6’4” he had to go on his tip toes to look over the top. He made his plan and stealthily entered her yard while unbuttoning his coat.
Sookie was asleep so he undressed to his pants and moved to hover over her, supporting his weight with his arms. He started kissing a path from her chin to her breast and Sookie didn’t fully wake until he pulled one bikini cup away and took the nipple in his mouth.
He leaned up to greet her with a smile and a kiss on the mouth, then returned to his work at her breasts. While he switched sides with his mouth, one hand made its way south. As he was about to put his fingers in her bikini bottoms, he heard a squeal. “DADDY! Eric is eatin’ Aunt Sookie’s nipples! HUWWY!”
The moment was over, and locks were purchased for the fence gates later that very day.
Star Trek References – sorry if you aren’t a TREKKIE! We are in my house and I couldn’t stop myself.