Eric stared down at the invitation. It was handwritten in fine calligraphy, addressed to him from the King of Mississippi himself, although he was pretty sure Talbot was responsible for the flamboyant, dramatic nature of the penmanship. Holding it up to his nose, Eric could even smell him there.
This was an opportunity. To Eric, the invitation also reeked of age-old revenge that had been long overdue. No one but himself, not even his maker or his child, knew of his secret desire for vengeance against Russell. Eric would like to keep it that way, as he knew they would only try to stop him.
"The Mississippi King knows you are next in line to be King of Louisiana. He wants you as an ally," Godric said. He seemed to appear out of nowhere by his child’s side and looked curiously at the paper. Eric jumped, so distracted by the thought of revenge that he did not feel even his own maker's presence behind him. But when he turned to face his maker, his boiling anger simmered down instantly.
Godric was looking deceptively childlike today. He had not bothered to dress after he woke and just pulled on one of Eric's white oxford button-down shirts, the sleeves hanging down past his hands. As usual, he hadn't bothered with underwear. "Will you go?" the older vampire asked, looking up at his prodigy.
"I have not yet decided. Right now, you are too much of a distraction," Eric smirked playfully.
"You are jumpy today," Godric observed, completely ignoring Eric’s comment. He gently took the invitation out of Eric's hand so he could look at it. "Russell Edgington… He is a very old vampire. If you do go, you should be careful," Godric advised, not liking the thought of Eric gone from him.
The Viking knew it would be hard, if not impossible, to sneak around behind Godric's back. He did not know how he was going to do it, other than to try and keep his maker distracted and in the dark for as long as possible. "He might even be older than you. I'm sure you both would have a lot to reminisce about, if I gave you both the chance," Eric teased. He wished he could bring Godric with him but he was afraid to drag his maker into such a dangerous situation, especially as Eric knew Russell was perhaps one of the only vampires in the New World who could overpower Godric.
Godric hadn't considered that. It had been so long since he spoke to anyone even remotely older. "If you go, may I attend with you? It says you may bring a guest," he asked, looking up from the invitation at Eric through his too-long bangs. Since coming to Shreveport to be with Eric, he hadn't bothered to cut his hair and it had grown long.
"I'm just going to the party to be polite and to stay on the King's good side," Eric lied. Sure, he would want to be on his good side at first, until he killed him, of course. But Godric was the only one who could make Eric feel guilty about lying.
"I'm afraid that Russell will see you as competition; I would worry for you."
"He will not be threatened." Godric dismissed the idea with a passive wave of his hand. He then laid the invitation on the table and reached out to run his hands up Eric's naked chest. He knew it was harder for his child to think if he were touching him. “I will blend in. No one will even look twice at me."
Eric knew that was impossible. Godric drew attention to himself without knowing it, without even trying. His very presence was like an electric current running through the room and it was impossible to look into those eyes and not see the power behind them. Yet Eric always had a hard time saying 'no' to Godric, not just because he was his maker, but because he could be so damn persuasive when he wanted to be. Eric sighed as Godric’s hands wandered up his chest. He knew then that he would give in.
That was when he grabbed Godric around the waist and hurled him faster than any human could onto the bed and pounced on him as if he were prey. His fangs withdrew with a loud snap and he growled lustfully down at his maker. This sudden display of power was only meant to provoke Godric into taking the dominant position, and they both knew that.
Godric hated being startled and manhandled and Eric was well aware of that. The bothered older vampire’s own fangs snapped into place as he hissed angrily at Eric. "You know I hate it when you do that," he snarled, automatically rolling them over so he sat on top of his lover. He instantly felt more comfortable in this position and it settled his nerves. "You are trying to distract me, my child," he accused knowingly. "You do not wish for me to go with you."
"Just because I want to fuck you, I'm trying to distract you?" Eric accused right back, able to give as viciously as he could get. He knew that the more they argued about this, the more Godric would suspect something was up. That is, if he hadn’t already begun to. The taller vampire’s hands tried to distract smaller one again as they snaked up Godric's naked thighs underneath the oversized shirt.
"Yes!" Godric growled, but as Eric's hands explored him, his anger melted away. Still, he did not give up. "Eric..." he began, but it was becoming difficult to concentrate. “II want to go with you."
"Why?" Eric asked with the stubbornness of a child. Godric was now straddling Eric's waist, his fangs still withdrawn, and the Viking could see the tips of them through his slightly parted lips. Eric’s erection stood to attention between them underneath a pair of black silk pajama pants that did nothing to conceal him. His hands did not stop their attempts to distract and to turn this vampire boy made of stone into putty. They roamed up his defined thighs and over his chest.
"I do not wish to be left here by myself, I want to be with you," Godric answered, leaning down to nip at his child’s lips while his hand reached down to stroke him through his pants. Eric was the one to turn to putty then. "Please. I can be your little twink," Godric pleaded, smiling as if he were proud of himself to have remembered such a modern word.
Eric grunted and tried to bite Godric's own lips hard enough to draw blood. "You can be my little twink right here, right now, and when I return. You cannot be that at the party," he pointed out with a playful grin.
Godric stopped stroking Eric when he realized he was not going to get him to change his mind like this. He buried his face in Eric's neck and kissed the skin there, wiggling his hips in his lap as if to get even closer to him. "But I wish to go," he pouted.
It seemed that his strategy to convince Godric to give in was working against him. His maker had turned it around on him and now Eric was the one at his mercy. "I want you to stay safe..." At least that was not a lie. Eric wanted Godric as far away from Russell as possible, especially because he was working through the plan in his head, and it would end in messy bloodshed. He was willing to risk much to get his revenge, but he was never willing to risk Godric. "Russell has become irrational and violent in his old age." Eric's hand reached down to take his own erection out of its silk confides when restraining it became too painful.
"I will be careful, Eric," Godric whispered in his ear. He felt his child fumbling between them to pull out his erection and he nipped at his earlobe playfully before kissing down Eric’s chest. "Let me go to the party?" he asked again sweetly.
Eric's sizable erection was standing straight up between them and his entire body trembled as Godric's tongue swept up his chest. "That’s not fair. You're not playing fair," Eric whined, not wanting to give in, but needing so much more. "Touch me before I flip you over and take you myself," he threatened.
"I will let you have me, my needful lover, however you want me. If you take me to the party," Godric offered between kisses. He reached down between them to stroke Eric's cock, knowing exactly how to push his buttons. "You can tie me up, you can bend me over your desk… You can take me however you want."
A few strokes later, Eric was breaking underneath Godric's skillful hand. "Fine!" he barked and flashed his fangs.
Godric gave Eric a fanged smile in return before he sat up and lined his lover’s cock up with his entrance. He felt the head of Eric’s thick cock nudge his virginal entrance, but then he remembered something and stopped. "I don't wish to get blood on the sheets," he whispered before he slid down Eric’s body and took his cock in his mouth instead.
Eric cried out and bit his lip hard enough to draw blood as he tried to hold back from thrusting into that wet heat. He knew that if this continued, he would not be able to hold out. So he gathered up whatever strength he had and threw Godric onto his back beside him. "If you weren't so damn impatient, you would let me stretch you, and you would not bleed," Eric told him simply, and reached under the pillow for the neglected bottle of lube.
Godric had the patience of a saint, but not when it came to sex. "It takes too long," he whined, watching warily as Eric popped the top off the lube and coated his fingers. "Just put that on yourself and we will do it that way," he tried to compromise.
Eric frowned, but was determined to change his maker’s mind. For once, he wanted Godric to know what it felt like to be taken without even the slightest bit of pain. Knowing that Godric never liked to take things lying down, Eric repositioned him until Godric was straddling his hips again. "I'll make it feel good. Trust me," Eric pleaded, and he coated his fingers with lube before he probed one digit between Godric’s cheeks and inside of him.
"Of course I trust you," Godric whispered, biting his lip as Eric's finger entered him. "Now can we?" he asked impatiently only a moment later, his hand coming down to stroke Eric's cock as if to persuade him.
"You're so impatient," Eric teased as his finger sought out Godric’s prostate and rubbed it gently before a second finger joined the first. "No one ever took their time with you before me, and I want it to be good for you," he tried to explain. He did not know a lot about Godric's past, but he did know sexual abuse had once been something he’d endured.
At the moment Eric’s fingers rubbed his prostate, Godric could not force any more protests from his lips. He threw back his head and cried out.
For the rest of the night, Eric set out to prove Godric wrong over and over and over again.
A few nights later, Eric and Godric pulled up to Russell Edgington's large mansion.
"Impressive," Godric said quietly as he opened the passenger door to Eric's Corvette and gracefully stepped out. "He certainly has good taste, at least," he told Eric when his child joined him. The house was old-fashioned in a way that only one as old as himself could truly appreciate it.
Eric stared disgustedly at the garish, oversized mansion. It was fit for a king, but Russell deserved nothing but death. Eric could feel his body strengthen with a rush of adrenaline just being that much closer to his secret arch-enemy. "It's really not that impressive. I could own a mansion twice as big if I were an arrogant, corrupt bastard like him," he muttered to his maker.
"You are very tense." Godric observed plainly. He wasn't sure what was going on with Eric, but he knew it had to do with the King of Mississippi. They walked up the porch stairs together and Godric reached out to take Eric's hand, hoping it would calm him. "I promise to be careful," he whispered, thinking that must be why Eric was so stressed.
When Godric slipped his smaller hand into Eric’s, the Viking suddenly wanted to tell him everything. It was as though their minds could connect even from a simple physical contact, and he wanted so badly to tell Godric what was weighing on his mind. But he could not. Not if he wanted to get his revenge. Godric would stop him for sure.
"I don't trust the King and you shouldn't either," was all he said.
"You don't get to be as old as I am by trusting anyone, Child," Godric stated with a chuckle.
Finally, a doorman appeared and they made their way inside. Godric reluctantly let go of Eric's hand and the younger vampire had to remind himself to be patient. He had to earn Russell's trust first and foremost before he could move in for the kill.
Maybe bringing Godric was actually a good idea, Eric schemed. Despite not wanting him to get involved, Godric’s presence showed the King that Eric trusted him with the one he loved the most. But when he would actually stake the bastard, he would make sure Godric was not anywhere near.
Talbot came to greet them with a seductive smile. Eric saw in him the perfect chance and nothing else. The exotic and beautiful Royal Consort smiled at Godric, but focused on the tall, handsome Viking. "Hellooo," Talbot looked him up and down flirtatiously, "Have we met?"
"Eric Northman, Sheriff of Louisiana Area Five," he introduced himself. "This is my maker, Godric. We have come on invite to see the King," he explained, his lips slightly upturned in a smile, his eyes never leaving Talbot's.
"Talbot, Royal Consort," he smiled, and Eric took his hand and leaned down to kiss it with old-fashioned romance that had the boy swooning.
On the outside, Godric appeared perfectly calm and untouchable. On the inside, he was thinking of tearing off Talbot's hand with just his bare teeth. The royal consort was beautiful and it was easy to see why Russell had chosen him. He was effortlessly charming in a way that reminded Godric of Eric. They would look beautiful together with their contrasting features. The thought made him grind his teeth together behind his lips.
"Right this way to the dining room," Talbot encouraged with another flirtatious smile towards Eric. He didn't even spare Godric a glance. The dining room was just as spectacular as the foyer. The King of Mississippi was engaged in conversation with another vampire when they came in, and they took two empty seats not too far from the head of the table.
"Russell, this is Eric Northman and his maker," Talbot introduced, interrupting his older lover. Russell stopped mid-sentence to look up at Eric. Instead of paying attention to them, Godric's eyes glanced around the room at the King’s collection of authentic antiques and, for a moment, was lost in his own world.
"It's a pleasure," Eric lied, and walked respectfully over to the seated King and dropped to his knees in supplication. The very motion of doing so made him sick, but this was more crucial than anything else.
That was what snapped Godric out of his daze and drew his attention back to his child. He had never seen Eric be so respectful to anyone but him before, and Godric was instantly suspicious of what Eric was up too. Godric did not move from his seat, and instead just gave a respectful nod when the King looked in his direction.
"The pleasure is mine, Eric Northman, I have heard much about you," Russell told Eric, already charmed by the gesture of the tall man. "There's no need to be so formal, but I appreciate your manners. They are very Old World."
Eric sported Russell his most seductive smile. "My maker has taught me to respect my elders and my Kings," he lied again. Sure, Godric had always taught him that, but he had never actually followed through with it. The only one he respected was Godric. He was Eric’s only king.
The Viking sat down in between his maker and the King and got right down to business. "I humbly request permission to hunt your territory for a vampire who has gone missing in my area," he lied. "Bill Compton... He is wanted for selling vampire blood." Eric prayed that his maker was still too distracted by the murals and statues in the room to speak up, but Godric looked over at him sharply and Eric held back from wincing.
Godric kept quiet, however, because he did not know what Eric was up too.
"That is a heinous crime, indeed. Selling vampire blood is not something I take lightly. We should ask him about it," Russell suggested with a smile as Bill walked into the room.
"You tried to pin that on me?" Bill demanded with an insincere smile and Godric just closed his eyes when he realized Eric had walked into whatever trap the King of Mississippi had laid. He sighed deeply and held himself back from boxing his child’s ears.
Eric’s fake smile dissolved and his eyes widening when he heard Bill’s familiar, irritating voice. He looked from the King to Talbot to Bill, realizing in horror that he had been caught. He did not have to look at Godric to know what he felt.
"We know Sophie-Anne had you selling vampire blood. See, Mr. Compton has accepted a position in my court and therefore keeps nothing from me," Russell explained before looking at Godric curiously. "Except, of course, the existence of your maker," he added, looking back at Bill who shifted nervously under his stare. That was a rather big piece of information to leave out when he had interrogated Bill earlier. "But I'm willing to put this whole V business behind us and make a fresh start. Especially since I like you, Northman, and you are in line for the throne of Louisiana. An alliance between the two of us could make us both very powerful."
"Interesting." Eric turned to Bill to give him a knowing smirk. "Which means... Sookie is no longer yours." He grinned in amusement at the news, if only to get Bill back for making him look like a lying fool in front of the King. As he taunted Bill, Eric stared intensely into his eyes. Bill was up to something, too.
Godric glared fiercely at Eric and Russell laughed as he watched the exchange. The King gently took Talbot’s hand in his as he spoke, "I suppose Eric and his maker don't share the same kind of relationship as we do."
"What a pity," Talbot said with a laugh, but eyed Eric the whole time. Eric would have spoken up and defended his relationship with his maker but his eyes were also focused on the dark, Greek man practically dangling himself in front of him.
"I insist that you stay the day," Russell told them suddenly.
"You're too kind," Eric gave Russell and Talbot both charming smiles before taking a sip from his 'cruelty-free' blood margarita. He could really use a Talbot in his life to prepare fancy meals with only one ingredient. He must have been an amazing human. No wonder Russell had loved him enough to turn him.
But still, he had to die. "An alliance is a perfect idea. If, of course, I decide to take the crown."
"Of course," Russell said, "Till then, there is no reason we shouldn't get to know each other better." It was then that the King glanced over at Godric who was moving his blood gelato around with a spoon and staring at it as if it had all the answers.
Eric had already sensed that Russell had taken an interest in his maker and he was not sure how he felt about it. A friendship between the two could be trouble, or it could be advantageous. Regardless, Eric did not want Godric involved in this. He was going to destroy Russell's world, piece by piece, just as he had destroyed Eric’s. And he was not going to let Russell get his hands on what he loved again.
"I would love to see the place. Maybe Talbot could give me a tour," Eric suggested, shooting the Greek vampire a smile. He did not want to leave Godric alone, but perhaps Eric could convince him to retire to bed early.
Godric finally couldn't take it anymore. "Excuse me,” he said quietly, "I need some air." He stood up and left the table.
Russell waited until he left before excusing himself. "I'll see to him," he said as if he were doing Eric a favor. "Talbot, you should give Mr. Northman a tour. Bill, perhaps you should retire for the evening," he said, essentially ordering the younger vampire back to his room.
Eric made the instinctual move to follow his maker, knowing that Godric must be infuriated by him. This was precisely why he had not wanted Godric to come. And the thought of leaving him alone with Russell was inconceivable. Yet before Eric could rush after him, he felt the strong but delicate palm of Talbot’s hand on his chest, and he turned to face the Greek beauty.
"Follow me," Talbot whispered to Eric as he led the blonde vampire to the library and shut the doors behind them.