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A Problem Shared

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"We are not fucking puppy dogs!"

Eric rolled his eyes at the lisp; Bill never had got the hang of shouting through a mouthful of fangs. Eric strolled forward, avoiding the pool of rapidly congealing Nan on the floor. "What a bitch," he said, wiping entrails on his pants, the whole incident already well on its way to becoming a distant memory. Bill had people for the clean-up, so there was nothing more Eric had to worry about, this evening at least. His work here was done.

Bill was actually shaking with rage. The past few days must have gotten to him more than Eric had realised. It was just like the young to be so hot-headed about everything. It took a little more than that to get Eric's blood boiling, even if someone had just threatened Sookie's life and gravely insulted them into the bargain.

"So I've been thinking," he said.

Bill straightened his jacket. Then he realised it was pretty unsalvageable and took it off, tossing it in the vague direction of the three decapitated bodies by the door. "About?"


Bill clenched his teeth. "I prefer not to discuss this with you without Sookie present. Besides which, she's already made her thoughts abundantly clear on the matter."

"She just needs a little time to come to terms with what she wants."

"What she wants..." Bill's gaze slipped to the floor. "... is impossible."

"That's precisely what I've been thinking about."

Bill glanced up, not getting it. Eric had been expecting that. This was one genius plan he was going to have to spell out in explicit detail before Bill caught on. That much Eric was sure of.

"She loves us both. She wants us both."

"And we love her," Bill cut in. "I don't see the point in going round and round in circles about it."

"There's an obvious answer." Eric put on a sudden burst of speed, fast enough that he knew it would catch even Bill off guard. He rounded the desk and surged into Bill's personal space, close enough that Bill was bent back over the polished wooden finish. He pinned Bill to the desk with his hips, grabbed at Bill's wrists and held his arms back out of the way. He could see the struggle in Bill, the way he gave one good shake that did precisely nothing to dislodge Eric's hold on him, then clamped down on the urge to fight, knowing in his bones that going one-on-one with Eric would be entirely hopeless. Such were the benefits of old age.

Eric bestowed one of his smallest, most infuriating smiles on Bill, and leaned in. He opened his mouth, fangs still lowered, making a show of it, and Bill screwed his eyes shut, powerless, but refusing to give even an inch. Eric's gums tingled as he thought about biting, but instead he ran the flat of his tongue up the side of Bill's throat and along the line of his jaw, tasting old blood and the faint salt of Bill's skin. He drew back to see Bill's eyes open again, wide and dark with shock.

"Stale," Eric said, licking the blood from his lips, remembering the exquisite tingle of Sookie's blood, fresh and alive, the most delicious thing he'd ever tasted.

"Eric," Bill said, but his voice came out hoarse. He had to swallow and try again. "Eric, what in god's name are you doing?"

"Do I need to draw you a picture, Your Majesty?"

"This isn't... I mean, I didn't think you..."

"Swung this way?"

Bill hesitated. "Swung towards me. Or anywhere near me."

"I've lived a long and varied life. I've yet to find a vampire with a reasonable IQ who hasn't sampled all the delights the world has to offer." He raised an eyebrow in question and wasn't surprised when Bill didn't deny it.

"I'm in love with Sookie," was what Bill did say, his voice not entirely steady.

"So am I."

"Then I fail to see what it is you're trying to prove here. If this is some kind of a test of my fidelity..."

Eric nudged his knee between Bill's thighs. "Sookie is an open-minded girl. I think this would be the answer to all her prayers."

Bill blinked several times. "You mean you want..." Eric waited him out, wanting to see the precise moment the proverbial penny dropped. "You can't be serious. We spend most of our time trying to kill each other."

Eric sighed. "I haven't tried to kill you for, oh, ages now. In fact, recently there's been a whole lot of me on my knees offering myself up to Your Majesty's mercy, and a whole lot of you not being able to follow through. And don't forget all the working together we've been doing. All that non-verbal communication." He leaned in a little closer. "You can't deny we're good at it. It's mutually beneficial when you get right down to it. Give it a little time and I'm sure you'll get used to the idea." He let go of Bill's wrists and was gratified when Bill didn't immediately try to punch him in the mouth.

"This really and truly isn't..." Bill was saying, shaking his head and looking amusingly off-balance. "It's just not. I mean, I never would have thought that you..."

Eric was too busy watching his mouth move to really listen to the words coming out of it. It happened to be a very pretty mouth. He'd simply never taken the time to properly admire it before.

"You can't scare me away by being... weird, either," Bill said. "If this is a game, it won't work."

"Oh ye of little faith," Eric said, and kissed him. Bill sucked in sharp breath, then, wonder of wonders, melted into it and kissed back.

It was a pretty good kiss, all things considered. Just a little rough around the edges, but Bill's lips were soft, his fangs retracted, and nobody did any mauling or biting, so Eric took it as a win. His hand ended up fisted in Bill's hair, and the two of them were a little wide-eyed and breathless when they finally broke apart.

"Well," Bill said. "This wasn't how I expected to end the evening."

"The night is young," Eric said. "I think we should go and pay a visit to Sookie."

Bill's pupils dilated. "I really think we should."

Eric shifted his hips, rewarding Bill with a scrape of teeth over his lip when Bill twitched and nudged up against him helplessly, hard and insistent against Eric's thigh.

"Look at it this way," Eric said. "You're not losing a fairy girlfriend. You're gaining a vampire boyfriend."

"I can't wait to see Pam's reaction."

Eric's jaw tightened. "It's the least she deserves after recent indiscretions."

"Even so. I'd really like to be there when you tell her that you want to be my boyfriend."

"Are you attempting to tease me?" Eric asked, rolling his hips.

Bill's eyelids fluttered and he grabbed at the edge of the desk, the wood creaking under his grip. "Not very well, apparently," he said, his voice strained.

"It's a start," Eric said, and he smiled into their next kiss.

He, for one, was entirely satisfied with the way they were ending the evening.