A sharp, stabbing pain wakes me from a dead sleep and I whimper in pain. In my sleep, I had tried to shift on my side, which caused the pain in my ribs. This fucking sucks; I never sleep on my back, only on my stomach or my side. The doctor said it would take about six weeks for my ribs to heal. How the hell am I supposed to sleep on my back for six weeks?
I grit my teeth and pant quietly until the pain subsides. I turn my head in the darkness of the bedroom and see Sookie sleeping on her side beside me. I smile as I look at how adorable she is. She looks so angelic with her hands resting underneath her cheek. Her braided hair is over her shoulder, with the end resting in the valley of her breasts. I still cannot believe that I am here with her. Last night, I thought Sookie would have taken me back to my house, but she said her hotel was a better idea.
True to his word, Bubba got us safely back to her hotel without any of the paparazzi seeing us. Bubba was kind enough to help Sookie get me up to her room. I am not ashamed to admit that I might need to get a wheelchair before this is all said and done. You never realize how much you use your torso until every goddamn thing you do hurts or tires you out.
Reaching over, I pick up the end of Sookie’s braid and tickle her nose with it. Her nose scrunches up and wiggles like a bunny. I grin playfully as I tickle her nose again.
“You’re playing a dangerous game Buster,” Sookie says in sleepy voice. One eye opens to stare at me with a mock glare. “You know I don’t wake up in the best of moods and I’m not fully functioning until I have my coffee. Are you sure you want to poke the bear?”
Because it’s me, my mind instantly goes to the gutter even though her words were completely innocent. “I have something I’d like to poke you with.” I lick my lips hungrily and take the end of her braid to caress along the tops of her breasts that are not covered by the camisole she sleeps in. “I seem to remember that an orgasm works better than coffee to wake you up.”
Sookie smiles wistfully as she grabs my hand to make me stop. “I remember. But sweetie I don’t think you’re in any kind of condition for us to be thinking about sex. I’m too afraid of hurting you. Hell, I would have slept in the guest room last night if you hadn’t pouted like a child until I gave in.”
I drop her braid and turn my hand so I can link my fingers with hers then pull until our joined hands rest over my heart. “As much as I want to be buried inside your tight, wet heat again,” I begin in what she used to call my sex voice, “I don’t want to rush it,” I finish somberly. “There is a ton of shit still hanging over of our heads. When I do make love to you again, I want it to be perfect. I’ve waited this long to be with you, I can hold out a few more weeks.” I lift her hand to my lips and kiss it sweetly.
Sookie smiles at me and scoots closer so her head lies on my shoulder. She is careful not to jar the bed too much so I won’t be inadvertently hurt. We lie in silence, enjoying the nearness of each other. It’s such a little thing but it brings me a strong sense of peace and happiness. I am starting to doze off when I feel Sookie shifting to get out of our bed.
“Don’t go,” I mumble drowsily.
“I have to use the bathroom, and then I’m gonna take a shower so I can run out. Do you need to get up before I go in? I don’t want you straining yourself,” Sookie says in her best mom voice.
“No. Why do you have to go out?” I don’t like the idea of her leaving me. I know she isn’t leaving me as in leaving me, but it still makes me nervous. If I could, I would super glue her to my side.
“I need to get you some clothes, so I thought I would go to your place. I’m sure Alcide wants to know how you’re doing,” Sookie says as she comes around to my side of the bed.
“M’kay,” I say as my eyelids flutter closed. I feel Sookie’s lips brush against my forehead and I drift back to sleep with a contented smile on my face.
I don’t know how much time has passed when I wake up again, but I hear muted voices coming from the living room. Unfortunately I have to get out of bed, because I need to pee. I refused to accept the doctor’s suggestion of getting a bed pan so I could do my business. I still have a shred of pride left.
“Ok, you can do this,” I say to psyche myself up as I lower one leg to the floor. I brace my hands against the bed and push my body up, trying to take some of the strain off my ribs. It still hurts like a mother fucker, but I manage to get myself sitting upright. I take a few minutes to wait for the pain to subside then shuffle slowly to the bathroom. After I do my business and wash my hands, I open the bathroom door to find Sookie standing in our bedroom.
“You should have called me,” she admonishes. “I would have helped you get up.
“How long was I asleep?”
“Almost four hours. I managed to go to your house and get most of your stuff. Alcide helped me pack. He’s actually here with me, said he wanted to check up on you. Do you want to come out to the living room or take a shower first?”
“I’ll shower later; I don’t know how long that’s gonna take. Where’s my bag? I want to put on something more comfortable.” The only clothes I have with me are the clothes I wore last night.
“I put your bag in the chair by the window,” she says while pointing her finger. “Do you want me to get something out so you don’t have to bend over?”
“Boxers, a pair of sweats, and a t-shirt are fine,” I say with a sigh. She rummages through my bag, pulling out the items I requested. I nod my head in approval of her choices because I don’t really care about what I’m wearing. It’s not like I’m walking the red carpet today. Sookie sets my clothes on the bed and smiles at me nervously.
“I’ll give you some privacy so you can get changed.” Her cheeks flush an adorable shade of red and her eyes won’t focus on me; instead she’s trying to look everywhere but at me. I wore only my boxers to bed and that’s what I’ve stood in since coming out of the bathroom. Even with the bandages, bruising, and cuts on my body, Sookie is still attracted to me. It’s the same reaction she had to seeing my naked torso in my trailer. She never used to react this way to just the sight of my chest, but maybe it’s because it’s been so long since we’ve seen each other’s bodies. Granted, she could be wearing a fucking trash bag and I would think she is the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen.
“Sookie look at me,” I command. She complies reluctantly, and she unconsciously bites her lower lip. I grip the door frame tightly seeing that because my body begins responding to hers. The rest of my body is throbbing in pain; let’s add my cock to the mix. Why the hell not? The air between us is electric; I swear I can feel the air pulsing and humming with our sexual attraction.
“Would you mind helping me get dressed? I don’t want to bend over and hurt myself,” I say with puppy dog eyes. She knows it’s a ruse and I know she knows, but she isn’t going to call me out on it. Instead, she tells me to move beside the bed so I have something to balance myself against.
Coming up behind me, Sookie slides her dainty hands in the waistband of my boxers at my hips and begins slowly sliding the cotton fabric down my legs. The feel of her hands and her warm breath floating over my skin has me clenching my hands in fists at my sides and a certain part of my anatomy twitches eagerly. My teeth are grinding and my jaw clenches otherwise I will be saying all sorts of wicked things to her. Why the hell did I want her to help me? All I’m doing is giving myself the worst case of blue balls imaginable. Sookie taps each of my feet so I will step out of my boxers. She rises to her feet, her hand brushing against my ass as she walks to the closet, throwing my boxers in the laundry hamper. My head turns and my eyes follow her every move. They are the only things allowed to move now otherwise my hands and lips will be all over her body.
When she turns back to face me, her breath catches as she takes in my nude form for the first time in years. Our eyes connect and I see that hers have darkened, the cornflower blue becoming midnight in color. Sookie takes her fill until she shakes her head, trying to shake the lust from her brain. I wish it was as easy for me to clear the lust from my body, but the only way I can be rid of my erection is to take the matter in my own hands…literally. With determined steps, she stalks forward, grabbing my clean boxers off the bed and drops to her knees in front of me to help me get them on. I groan in response; I know she isn’t doing this intentionally. But Goddamnit, the sight of her on her knees in front of my aching cock puts all kinds of memories and fantasies in my head.
“I’m sorry,” Sookie whispers softly. I grunt to acknowledge her words because I’m trying to ignore that her hands are skimming up my legs and that her mouth is RIGHT FUCKING THERE. Sookie smiles in understanding. Before Sookie slides my boxers the rest of the way up my legs, she pauses to speak to my cock. “Don’t worry old friend; you and I are going to get intimately reacquainted soon. I can’t wait to feel you sliding in and out of me; take your pick where we start,” she says huskily as she slides the boxers up to sit below my waist. Her words make me whimper and I feel weak in the knees. I grab her by the hair and drag her lips to mine for a kiss full of need and anger; my vision has disappeared behind a red haze brought on by her words. I want nothing more than to take her in every way imaginable, bathing my cock in the warm, sweetness of her mouth before moving to plunge inside her tight, wet heat below.
“You’re a fucking tease,” I grind out against her lips when we break apart.
“Nothing new there,” Sookie sasses. “I guess now’s not the time to tell you that my panties are soaked because all I’ve been able to think about is the feel of you inside me, touching me in places no one else can reach. I want to feel you filling me everywhere.” Everywhere? Does that mean what I think it means? Dear God, I’ve died and gone to heaven. Or maybe it’s Hell because I’m being denied the ecstasy that I’ve only ever been able to find inside of her.
I claim Sookie’s lips once more in a hard kiss but quickly release her lips before I end up forgetting my earlier claim to make love to her our second “first” time.” Go out to the living room and join Alcide while I finish getting dressed. Otherwise I’m going to end up lying down on this bed so you can ride my face for the rest of the afternoon,” I say in a lowered voice as I slap her on the ass hard. It’s Sookie’s turn to whimper with need, but she does as I ask. She slips quietly from the room and I gingerly lower my aching body to the edge of the bed. I need to feel better and soon. There is no way she and I are going to be able to last weeks without some kind of sexual release.
Fifteen minutes later, I find Sookie and Alcide in the kitchen of her hotel room. Alcide is sitting at the breakfast bar with a giant bowl of chips and salsa while Sookie moves around the kitchen making a late lunch for the three of us. She looks up at me with a small smile but goes back to mixing something in a large bowl. Alcide stares at me with a grimace on his face as I gingerly sit in the seat next to him.
“Jesus Christ! She really did a number on you. You gonna be OK?”
I shrug my shoulder and feel a twinge in my ribs. I sigh in frustration because it hasn’t even been a day and I’m already tired of being in pain. “I’ll live,” I grit out. Sookie hearing the discomfort in my voice stops what she is doing and goes to the refrigerator pulling out a bottle of water. She hands me the water with the bag of prescription pills I came home from the hospital with.
“You need to take your antibiotic and you should really take one of the pain pills,” she says in a tone that leaves no room for argument.
“I’d rather not take the pain medication; in the past, they’ve never helped with the pain when I had ‘em. All they do is put me to sleep. Do you think I can take Tylenol or ibuprofen instead?”
Sookie shrugs but goes to her purse to get a bottle of ibuprofen. She hands me the bottle before returning to the kitchen to resume making lunch. “It wouldn’t hurt you to sleep for a while. You’re injured; you’re body needs sleep to help heal it.”
I pop the top of the ibuprofen bottle and shake out a couple of tablets, followed by fishing out my antibiotic. I guzzle half the bottle of water as I take the pills. “So what happened last night after we left?”
“Well,” Alcide says as he chews around a mouthful of chips, “the cops took statements from everyone to corroborate what happened. Lucky for you that someone turned on a video camera the moment Freyda started shouting at the two of you sitting together. Production, I would think, is shut down indefinitely; no one’s heard a word from the producers or the director. But TMZ is all over the story; someone must have sent them the video of Freyda being handcuffed and abusive to the cops. Her mug shots are all over the website, and they are reporting that she is charged with aggravated assault, possession of illegal substances, under the influence, and a slew of other shit.”
“Did you get my phone and iPad from my trailer last night?” I need to see this website; I need to know what the hell is being spread.
“Of course; I put them in the bag with all the chargers as well as your wallet.” He gets up from his chair. “Just stay there; I’ll get ‘em for you. Point me in the direction of where I need to go.”
When I have the iPad in my hands, I hurry to TMZ’s website. There it is on the front page: Freyda’s mug shot photo and the video of what happened on the set. Sookie stops fixing lunch to come around to my side so we can watch it together. The audio quality is poor; you can’t hear much of anything from the distance this video was taken. However, you can see with absolutely clarity that Freyda attacks me and I do not fight back. You hear a scream that must have come from Freyda the second time she tried to attack me, and then the camera works gets shaky as the holder pans quickly to Freyda knocked out on the ground. You never see who knocked her out; all you see are a pair of denim-clad legs. The video ends at that point.
“At least you’re in the clear,” I say to Sookie reassuringly as I rub her back. Her back had become tense as we watched the video, and I had no idea why.
Sookie looks at me incredulously. “I don’t give a shit about bad press Eric. If anything, I’m disappointed it doesn’t show me laying that bitch out!” Alcide and I both have to chuckle at that. Sookie places her hands on my face so she can look me in the eyes. “I hated seeing her attack you. I hate knowing you are in pain because of her. And I abso-fucking-lutely hate that our lives aren’t completely free of her or that bitch you call a manager. I want us to begin our life together with our daughter,” she tells me with her voice full of longing. I kiss her palms; I, too, want nothing more than to begin my life with my girls.
“Soon my love,” I vow but then sigh as her words sink in. I still have to deal with Pam. I don’t know what I’m going to do about her. Obviously, I no longer want her to be my manager. I can’t fucking trust her and I never want to be around her again. The easiest thing to do would be to fire her. Call me a horrible person, but that seems so unsatisfying. I want the bitch to suffer for her actions; I want to take everything away from her that she holds dear.
“You’re thinking about Pam aren’t you?” Sookie brushes her hand through my hair, scraping her fingers along my scalp and neck in a way that has always soothed me.
“Is it wrong that I want to make her suffer for what she’s done?”
“Hell no!” Sookie and I look at Alcide who is bristling with anger. “I don’t know how the hell you are being so goddamn calm about everything! I nearly took the bitch’s head off when she called me trying to get information on you.”
“Why did she call you?”
“Because you weren’t answering your phone! I told her you’d gone to the hospital to get checked out and then had come home to rest. She insisted she was going to fly down here but I told her not to bother. I said I would look after you and have you call her when you were up. She seemed put off by my answer, but then she went into full predator mood. Pam said she was going to make everyone pay for not protecting you from Freyda; the studio, producers, hell, probably even the pope himself are going to be on her hit list.”
Sookie moves back in the kitchen, taking a bread knife out of the butcher’s block to slice open three baguettes she had sitting on the counter. She lines the bread with shredded cabbage and then dishes out heaping portions of shrimp salad. My mouth begins watering and my stomach grumbles loudly as I realize what she’s making: shrimp po boys with her Cajun sauce. Oh my God, these things are fucking amazing! She used to make these for me when we lived in New York and they were my absolute favorite. The rolls would be shipped up to her from her family down here in Louisiana, because she insisted that the rolls available in New York didn’t taste the same. Large shrimp would be cooked with garlic and Creole seasoning, then the shrimp is mixed in a spicy mayonnaise mixture that I could never figure out what was in it. I’ve spent years searching for someplace that could make this sandwich for me. Despite all the great restaurants in New Orleans, I’ve never found a shrimp po boy that tastes as good as the one Sookie makes for me. She seats one of the heaping sandwiches in front of me, and another in front of Alcide. Both of us eagerly dig in; the only noise in the room is the sound of our chewing.
“I have an idea,” Sookie says as she picks at her sandwich. “I don’t know if it’s something that we can carry out, but I think I know how we can take everything away from her.” Alcide and I listen eagerly as Sookie outlines her plan. We offer suggestions to refine the idea in some spots, embellish it in others. By the time we are through, if everything goes according to plan, Pamela Ravenscroft will be exposed for the narcissistic bloodsucker she is.
Recipe for Shrimp Po Boy can be found here.