Now, I lay me down to sleep...
Ooh, I just can’t find a beat...
I guess I’ll go count the sheep...
Most of all he needs the funk...
Everybody’s got a little light under the sun...
I placed my cell phone, lip-gloss, ID, and the $158.00 in tips that I made last night in the Gucci purse. The stunning designer clutch was on the list of things I planned on returning, but I need it to carry my things tonight. Next, I place my worn clothes, and my new jacket into the leather duffel bag. I make sure to leave everything I didn’t use the way I found them.
For no good reason, I decided to take a picture of myself and send it to my cousin.
After that, I look out the peephole. Damn, the big fellow is still out there.
Suddenly my phone rings and I jumped for joy cause I knew it was Laffy-taffy. I don’t get a chance to say hello before I hear... “Got-Damn Hookah, you look hot!”
I’m chuckling as I put him on speaker phone. That way, I could carry on with the vain admiration of myself.
“Thanks, La-La” It was good to hear his voice, but I wish I could see the look on his face too.
“Shreveport is sho treatin yo ass well. That jewelry is the real deal. And is that an Armani dress you got on?”
“Why yes it is...” It didn’t surprise me that Lafayette knew the dress was a designer. He keeps up with all the latest fashions.
“What kind of gig you workin, and can I get a hookup?” I knew he’d ask this and I still wasn’t ready to tell him, but now is as good of a time as ever.
“Promise this is between you and me. Whatever you do don’t tell Lettie Mae.”
“Oh shit! This -sounds- juicy…“He said slowly, “Lemme take a sip of mah drank...” he slurped loudly in my ear.
I take a deep breath before I speak... “I’m workin at Fangtasia…”
“Say what now!?...” He coughed.
“I make $300.00 a week plus a few hundred in tips and I earn every damn penny.”
With mocking in his tone he replied, “Hold on hookah...You- Ms. Tara Mae - I -hate- vampires -Thornton is working at Fangtasia- a vampire bar?”
“Well, yeah... it was kinda my last resort. Nobody and I mean nobody would hire me. Everything was goin well for me too.”
“Very well by the looks of you; that bad-ass dress cost $1200.00 Benjamin’s.”
I shouldn’t have taken a sip of water, cause all of it flew right outta my mouth and all over the vanity. I ran to the bathroom to get a towel and started dabbing my mess up. I figured my dress may have cost one or two-hundred dollars. But goddamn, Eric had to buy me a dress that cost more than I paid for my last car.
“Still there heffa… Don’t be pressin mute on me...”
I continued to dab up the water. I didn’t say a word; I wanted to hear more of what he had to say about what I just told him. Depending on his reaction, I may keep the rest to myself.
“I know you Tara Mea and you ain’t spending that type of dough on no clothes. And ya said the job ‘was’ goin good. So how you fuck it up?”
Damn, my cousin knows me too all too well. But that was the old Tara… “I ain’t cursed or punched nobody out and even if I did, I don’t think Eric would fire me.” Now that I think of it, he’d probably be turned on.
“Good to hear, sound like a good gig. Now tell me, who brought you that bangin-ass dress?”
“Well, my boss did.” I cringed at my admission.
“Vampire Eric...” His surprised tone confirmed how messed up it was.
“Yeah…” It sounded strange hearing Lafayette say his name. Until now Eric was my little, well big secret. Our ‘relationship’ and I use the term loosely, was surreal. Now I had to acknowledge it.
“Sugar–daddy- Eric,” He practically sang. “Now this shit is startin to make sense.” He chuckled and it annoyed the piss out of me.
“It’s not like that, I ain’t fuckin him. I’m no fang-banger.” I reassured only myself. There was no convincing Laffy if his mind was made up.
“Not yet.” He chuckled some more and I heard the click of his lighter, I knew he was lighting up a fat ass joint. I could use one of those right now.
“Not ever! He bought me a few things because of a situation I’m in.” More self-encouragement...
He inhaled, “A situation huh, so that’s what the ‘was goin well’ is all about…” and then exhaled. No doubt about it, Lafayette Reynolds is the sharpest knife on the table.
“Don’t leave me hangin Tara Mea, what’s this ‘situation’ all about.”
I just didn’t know how to tell him the rest. No matter what I said, it was gonna sound crazy as hell so I took a deep breath and just spit it all out. “Lafayette, no shittin you…for some strange reason I smell really good to vampires. My boss Eric, the manager Pam and almost all the other vampires flirt with me constantly, other vampires just stare a lot, trying to figure me out, and last night this one crazy ass vampire attacked me.”
“A vampire attacked you..! Did the sonofabitch drink ya blood!?” He asked, clearly concerned.
“No, but he went all wild and almost choked me to death, now I’m here in New Orléans at the King’s house.”
“Back yo ass up cuzz. You got attacked on the job last night and you ran away to New Orléans? Sounds like ya ass quit to me, not that I blame ya... And who the fuck is King?”
“Lafayette, for the hundredth time, I didn’t quit. Eric and I left together. He’s a vampire Sheriff and I guess when vampires get out of line they have to tell the King. The vampire that attacked me had all the other vampires scared shit-less so Eric brought me here.”
“Oh, hell naw, that’s all types of fucked up!” He sounded worried making me realize I should be more worried than I am.
“I know. I’ve been locked in a room all day waiting for Eric and the King to tell me what the fuck to do next.”
“I’ll tell you what the fucks next, bring ya narrow ass home or I’m commin ta get ya. Fuck it, give me the Kings address, I’m on my way.”
There is no way my kin getting mixed up in whatever I got myself into. “No La-La, I can handle this. I just wanted you to know I’m alright.”
He let out an apologetic sigh. “Sorry, I haven’t called you in a minute, I’ve been busy workin doubles this week. Terry dun ran off somewhere. Imma call yo ass every day now, and if you don’t answer, I’ll show up. I know where you live tramp.”
“Fine by me, I’ll be back in Shreveport tomorrow.”
“Cool, in the meantime, sounds like Sheriff-sugar-daddy got ya back.” He started crackin up at his own wisecrack, I chuckled, but only on the inside. I wish I could reach through the phone and smacked that bald head of his.
“Eric ain’t my sugar-daddy, fool! And don’t worry bout me cuzz, I’ll be fine.”
“I know you tough girl, but that doesn’t mean I won’t go ‘Blade’ on they ass.”
I chuckled, picturing Laffy with black shades on yielding a sword. I’ve seen it with my own eyes and that man can fight. “Talk to you tomorrow Lafayette Marquis...Loves you.”
“Loves you more Tara Mae...”
After my much-needed chat, I realized I’d forgotten to ask how everyone was doing. It’s been over three months since I left. Since working at Fangtasia, the time seems to fly. Hell, I doubt if anyone but Lafayette even gives a damn how I’m doing anyway. Doesn’t really matter anymore, I got my life here now.