Charlaine Harris owns almost everything. I own the rest. Thanks to SeriousCrush for her excitement and support to read my stories and edit them, despite how busy her real life is. And thanks to all my readers who leave me such wonderful reviews. I love you all.
I am so sorry there has been such a long span between this post and the last. August got away from me. To make it up to you, I’m posting Chapter 6 immediately after this one. I hope you enjoy them both.
Eric and Pam looked at each other and then at Sookie.
“Well?” Sookie lifted her eyebrows. It wasn’t magic, no matter how many times he claimed it was.
“It’s a form of mind control.” Eric sat at the table. “It’s called glamouring, hence the name of the club. We tell them what they want to hear.”
“You’re using mind control to take their money!” Her mouth hung open.
Pam shrugged. “It could be worse.”
Eric leaned toward her. “People want the vampire experience, and what better way? They get to feel the thrall without the danger.”
“You don’t call this dangerous?” Sookie got up and opened the supply closet where a handful of women were still waiting, glossy-eyed and silent.
“Oh, I almost forgot about them.” Pam joined her at the door. She offered her hand and led them away.
“Pam will take care of them. They weren’t in any danger. There are others who would’ve killed them. We’re mainstreaming.” He tilted his chin up.
“You want me to praise you for not killing them?” Sookie scoffed and sat across from him again. “You were feeding from them and taking their money. That’s not exactly mainstreaming.”
“Pam was feeding from them.” He held her gaze to emphasize his point. “You know my secret, now it’s your turn. How did you know about the raid?”
“I read the minds of the undercover cops. I didn’t mean to, it just happens. Most of the time I can’t control it.”
Eric rested his elbows on the table. “You’re a telepath?”
“Can you read my mind?”
Sookie smiled. “No. You are wonderfully silent. So are Pam and that tattooed guy. It must be a vampire thing.”
“Is that why I can’t glamour you?”
Sookie shrugged. “You don’t seem that surprised.” No one had ever responded so calmly to finding out what kind of freak she is.
“I’ve been around a long time, and although I haven’t met a telepath before, I know someone who has.”
Sookie’s heart started pounding. There were other telepaths?
“What did I miss?” Pam breezed into the room.
“Sookie is a telepath.”
Pam smiled. “How interesting. What are we going to do with her?” She was looking at Eric.
Sookie frowned. “I think I should have some say in what happens to me.” Uneasiness settled back into the pit of her stomach.
“Hey, what happened to your accent?” Pam tilted her head.
Sookie smiled. “In my experience, cops tend to leave me alone if they think I’m a simple country bumpkin. The thicker the accent, the better it works.”
Eric touched her hand, sending a ripple of pleasure up her arm, effectively silencing her. “I would like you to meet Dr. Ludwig. She has experience with telepaths.”
“You expect me to trust you? Why should I do that? Besides, what if she tries to kill me or something?” Sookie’s mouth went dry.
“She’s not really in the business of killing people…well at least most of the time.” Pam waved her hand dismissively.
“You’re not helping.” Sookie pushed away from the table. “Look, I should go. We had our talk and you found out what you wanted to know about me.”
“Wouldn’t you like more control?” Eric bounced to his feet and blocked her path to the door. “I’m sure she could help you. You could meet here.”
“Is that supposed to make me feel better? Need I remind you that when I got here she was feeding from four humans? Not to mention you’re stealing from these people. It’s just not right.”
His jaw tightened. “Please?”
The offer was tempting, but what did it say about her if she started to consort with people like him. No. Not people. Vampires.
“I’ll think about it.”
* * * *
A week had gone by since her last visit to Glamoured. She thought about Eric more often than not, and even more about his offer. Knowing there was someone out there that could help her control her telepathy was more appealing every time she came to work, especially tonight.
Marcy was working shifts here and there, but she was becoming less and less reliable. She was supposed to be in tonight, but she called in sick, yet again, leaving Sookie to deal with the customers on her own.
Jason was sitting at the bar with a couple of his buddies from the construction site, including the foreman, Steve. Jason was on edge. Sookie served another round of beers and looked at her brother. Without any warning, she was in his head, seeing images of Jason in a passionate embrace with Fran, Steve’s wife.
Sookie blinked and then smacked Jason upside the head. “How could you? She’s married!”
Jason pushed away from the bar and looked Steve in the eye. The guilt on his face was more damning than anything Sookie said.
Steve lunged for him and grabbed his shirt. “You sumbitch! I’m gonna kill you!”
The fabric of Jason’s shirt ripped as he ducked to the side. Steve’s fist maintained its momentum, sailing beyond the bar and connecting squarely with Sookie’s face. She crumpled to the floor like a ragdoll.
Sam was hovering over her and shouting, “Break it up!” By the time Sam had Sookie back on her feet, Jason was gone. Sam pointed a finger at Steve. “Get out before I call the cops.”
“I don’t care what happened, no one touches my servers!” Sam was growling.
Steve and the rest of the construction group left without another word. No one messed with Sam.
“Put this on your eye before it swells shut.” Sam thrust an ice pack in her hand.
Sookie winced. “It hurts. Is it bleeding?”
Sam nodded. “I’m no doc, but it looks like you need stitches.”
Perfect. Without insurance, her mistake was going to cost her a few hundred dollars. All of this could’ve been avoided if she had stayed out of Jason’s head. It was none of her business what he did or whom he did it with. Even if his partner was married!
Eric was right. She needed help controlling her telepathy.
“Do you mind if I leave work now, before the swelling gets worse?” Sookie looked in the mirror behind the bar and frowned. Blood was smeared across the rim of her eye.
“Of course. Go take care of yourself. I’d drive you myself, but I can’t leave the bar.” Sam kicked the mat under the register.
“Don’t worry about me. I’ll see you tomorrow.” Sookie grabbed her purse and slipped out the back door. She had no intention of going to the hospital this time of night. Instead, she got on the road and drove to Shreveport.
on to Chapter 6