[DISCLAIMER: I do not own the plot, characters or title to True Blood or the Southern Vampire Mysteries. They belong to Charlaine Harris, Alan Ball & HBO.]
I heard the most beautiful thing I've ever heard in my entire life. Not a goddamn thing. Complete silence. No thoughts, no brain waves, nothing. I was in shock. As I stared at the back of this brown haired man, I thought about kissing him I was so happy. Okay Stackhouse, get yourself together. You're going to calmly walk over to him and simply take his order. Stand up straight, and act normal. I walked to the table, trying hard to keep a normal smile. He had short, thick, dark hair, long sideburns and high cheekbones. I stood in front of him and closed my eyes. I tried hard to listen to his thoughts, but still nothing. How is this possible?
"Hello Miss, I'll take a glass of your sweetest red wine.", the man said.
I opened my eyes and whispered, "Oh my stars, I can't hear you..."
"RED! WINE!", he said, exaggerating every syllable.
"No no, I can hear you but I just can't ... hear you."
He stared at me bewildered. Finally, I gained my composure and smiled.
"I'm so sorry sir, I'll go get your wine."
"Thank you ..." he glanced down at my name tag for a millisecond. "Sookeh. Such a lovely name, is it short for something?"
"Nope, just plain old Sookie." I laughed. "Ill be right back with your wine. Here's a menu while you wait." I said and rushed off.
Who and what is this man? Why can't I hear his thoughts? And why does he pronounce my name like that? Sookeh.
I went over to the bar. Tara had left for the night and Terry Bellefluer took over. Terry was Andy Bellefluer's cousin. Poor Terry, he had served in Fallujah, Iraq for a couple of years. But ever since he came back, well his brain just hasn't been the same. Everyone seemed to be scared of Terry. He was kinda unpredictable. I wasn't scared of him though. This man fought for our country, for our freedom. How could anyone be scared of him? I smiled at Terry and asked him for a glass of red zinfandel.
"Sure Sookie, how you likin' your first week here at Merlotte's?" Terry said.
"I'm lovin' it so far, everyone's made me feel real welcome already."
"Well we're happy to have you be a part of our team. Let me know if you need anything else Sookie." he said as he grabbed the cloth from over his shoulder and wiped down the bar top.
I thanked Terry and took the glass of wine and a napkin. I walked back over to my table and placed the wine and a napkin down in front of my enigmatic customer. I could feel this weird, electrical charge surging through my body when I was near him. It was the strangest sensation. Part of me knew I should be afraid, but another part of me wanted to explore this new feeling.
"Here you are sir."
"Please, call me Bill."
"Sure, Bill. Have you decided what you're going to order yet?" I flashed him a brilliant smile.
"What are you Sookie?" he asked.
And my smile faded.
"Uhhhm, well I'm a waitress, and a god fearing Christian woman."
He laughed, but he seemed lost in thought. I never thought I'd say this, but for once I wished I knew what somebody was thinking.
"Alrighty Bill, well if you need anything at all just holler okay?"
I walked around my section, placing newly filled pitchers of beer on tables. I walked over to a group of men that just sat down at table 8. My brother Jason, and his friends Hoyt Fortenberry and Rene Lenier were talking loudly. Hoyt was my favorite of Jason's friends. He was kind and goodhearted. Considering who his mother was, he turned out to be a good guy. Rene is Arlene's boyfriend, he's a good lookin' guy with a pretty sexy cajun accent but there was still something about him that I just couldn't quite put my finger on. I slipped into his mind once, but everything was black and red and snarly.
"Hey Sook!" My brother hugged me and gave me a kiss on the cheek. "How ya doin'? You think you could get us a pitcher when ya get the chance?"
"Sure Jase. You boys want any starters, or are you just gettin' beer?" I flipped open my order pad and waited.
"Can we get a basket of buffalo wings and some fried okra to start?" asked Hoyt. I wrote down their order and put it in the order wheel in the kitchen window. I went to the bar to fill their beer and brought it to their table. Jason was looking around, searching for someone.
"Is Dawn working tonight Sookie?" he asked.
"Dawn never showed up for her shift so I'm here covering for her. Been here since eleven this mornin'. Why do you ask?"
"Aw, ok. I was just wonderin'. That's all." he said as he watched a woman stroll past him toward the restroom. She exaggerated the sway of her hips when she noticed him watching.
"Yeah okay." I chuckled. My brother was the biggest ladies man in this town. He's probably slept with most of the women in this restaurant.
I walked around my section, checking everyone's tables to make sure they had everything they needed. I went to check on my mysterious customer to find that he was no longer there. In his place was a still full wine glass, and a 25$ tip. Wow. All I did was bring him a glass of wine, and he didn't even touch it. As I cleaned up the table, I noticed he had scribbled on the napkin sitting underneath the glass.
Sookie, I could picture him saying my name in my head and it made me giggle. Sookeh.
I'm sorry to leave on such short notice. I would love to see you sometime.
I've just recently moved to my family's old plantation house between the
Bon Temps Cemetery. If you are free tomorrow, I'd love for you to stop by.
I won't be available during the day, but I'll be there by 8:00 p.m.
I grabbed the napkin and shoved it into my back pocket.
I picked up Jason, Hoyt and Rene's starters and brought them to their table and refilled their pitcher while I was there. Since they were my last table, I walked around and cleaned up my section a bit. I wiped down all the tables and chairs and made sure they were neat for tomorrow morning. I put all the dirty dishes into the sink while I let my mind slip away. I couldn't stop thinking about Bill. He wanted to see me again, but we barely even talked while he was here. I realized that his house was just on the other side of the cemetery I lived next to. I felt a rush of excitement run through me. Why was I getting so excited? I barely knew this man, and here I am ready to ride over there like a princess on a white horse needing to be saved. I put Bill to the back of my head and continued cleaning up.
Jason and his friends left me a nice tip. I put it in my pocket and cleaned off their table and wiped it down.
"Hey Sookie, I just wanted to thank you again for covering Dawn's shift. I really do appreciate it." Sam said from behind me. I turned around to find him a little too close for comfort. I backed up a tiny bit and said, "Anytime Sam, it's not like I have much of a life anyway. And it puts money in my pocket, so I really can't complain." I smiled.
"Well I'm giving you off tomorrow since you worked so hard today. The place looks great Sook, let's lock this place up and head on home."
I grabbed my things from my cubby in Sam's office and thanked Arlene again for helping me with my tables. We all walked out the back door together, said our goodbyes and left.
When I pulled up to my house, the light's were still on. I smiled to myself. It was 12:30 a.m. and my Gran was still up. She should've been asleep by now but I secretly loved that she always waited up for me, it gave me a sense of comfort that I wasn't walking into a dark, quiet house. When I walked in, Gran was sitting on the couch reading her favorite romance novel. She put her book down, pushed her glasses to the top of her head and said, "Hey Sookie, I thought you were supposed to be home for dinner?"
"Gran, you shouldn't have waited up, it's late. But I appreciate that you were thinkin' of me. Dawn never showed up for work tonight, so Sam asked me if I could pull a double. I could use the money so I said yes."
"Well, I sure hope Dawn is okay, has anyone heard from her?" Gran asked.
"No, Sam tried to call her but she didn't pick up. I'm sure she's fine though. Probably forgot she had work or somethin'. I'm sorry I didn't call to let you know I was working later than expected. Merlotte's got real busy around supper time and I didn't even get a change to breathe." All of a sudden Bill came to my mind again. Gran could tell I had thought of something, "I know that smile anywhere Sookie, did you meet a man today?"
I blushed. "Well, there was this one guy, it was just the weirdest thing. He had this vibe about him, so against my better judgment, I listened to him. But you know what Gran? I couldn't hear anything at all." Gran's eye widened for a fraction of a second and then she relaxed, but I noticed it. I pulled down my wall and listened to her. I know, how low class of me, but she was hiding something from me.
Could it be possible? Right here in Bon Temps, Louisiana? I know they're in New Orleans, but here? Oh no, why is Sookie looking at me like that? LA LA LA LA LA LA!
"Alright Sookie, well it's late and I'm gettin' old. It's way past my bedtime, I'll see you in the morning sweetheart. Goodnight." Gran shuffled off to her bedroom faster than normal.
I walked to my room and opened my dresser. I picked out an old Pink Floyd shirt, and a pair of black shorts for bed. I grabbed my towel and clothes and walked to my bathroom. I turned on the shower and lazily stripped out of my uniform. I stood under the steady stream of water for awhile, letting the hot water and steam engulf me. I shampooed my hair and rinsed it, then threw in a glob of conditioner. I let the conditioner sit in my hair while I washed my body and shaved my legs and underarms. After I was done, I rinsed the conditioner from my hair and turned off the water. I grabbed my towel and wrapped it around my body. Today was long and hectic and I couldn't wait to jump under my covers and fall asleep. I plaited my wet hair and brushed my teeth quickly.
When I opened the bathroom door, the steam billowed out into my bedroom. When it cleared, I could've sworn I saw someone standing by my window. I looked down at myself and clawed my towel closer to my body. When I looked up, there was no one there. Did I just imagine that whole scene or was there someone really there? I ran over and shut my window and blinds, and closed my curtains. I was probably just overly exhausted but I sprinted into the hallway and grabbed the shotgun. I checked to make sure it was loaded and the safety was on, and placed it next to my bed, just as a precaution. It did make me feel a little better, and I slowly dozed off into a deep sleep.
SPOILER ALERT! If you DO NOT want any insight on what I plan for this story, then look away now.
This is NOT for the Bill lovers. In the next couple of chapters it may seem like it's going to be a Bill & Sookie love story but I have no intentions of them being together, and I don't want you to get your hopes up. I have a lovely Viking man in mind for Sookie ;)