Disclaimer: All characters belong to people that aren't me.
Author's Note: This story was written in response to a challenge at trueblood_las on Livejournal.
The worst thing about being a telepath was that I couldn't tell people they were being rude if they didn't know I could hear their thoughts. To them, it was just a song stuck in their heads. To me, it felt like they just stood up in the middle of the room and started belting out the latest pop hit.
It wasn't totally their fault. I hadn't been getting a whole lot of sleep, thanks to my own thoughts of a certain vampire, so I hadn't been able to keep my shields up as well as I should have. But I still thought there was something wrong with how I had a song memorized, and I'd never even actually heard the song.
This wasn't the first time either. I once had "Livin' La Vida Loca" stuck in my head for three months because of everybody else projecting it at top volume. I wasn't sure why anyone in our little town would think they were living a crazy life, but that didn't make those three months any easier.
But this new song was just flat out evil. It was annoying, it stuck in my head like it got caught on fly paper, and for some reason I just couldn't understand, every other person in Bon Temps seemed to be a fan. And even though I hated it, I found myself humming the tune more often than not.
I'd never heard of Lady Gaga before this song infiltrated the minds of everyone I knew, but I looked her up after Tara caught me singing to myself and put a name to the tune. Personally, I wasn't sure if she was even human, much less a lady of any kind, but I did believe she was a musical terrorist. This song was like an airborne biological weapon.
The demon song finally left my head when I was getting ready for a visit to Fangtasia. Eric asked me to come by, so my worry over what he wanted to discuss chased the song away. Sometimes I thought my life was easier when I didn't have to worry about what Eric wanted. Most of the time, however, I enjoyed our toeing-the-line, flirty, undefined relationship more than I was willing to admit. At least to him. I knew it was driving him crazy, just like I knew something would have to give sometime soon, but I wasn't in any rush.
I rushed out of my house after applying the final touches on my lipstick, then drove fifteen miles above the speed limit all the way to Fangtasia. When I got there, Pam ushered me past the line and through the front door, then pointed out the booth Eric was sitting in, as though my feeble human eyes could never spot the beautiful giant Viking vampire. Add in the fact that he started staring at me the second that I walked in the door, and I could easily guess how much Pam thought of me, favorite human or no.
Eric stood when I got to the table. He greeted me with a lingering kiss to the cheek that I could swear I felt down to my toes. "Greetings, Sookie. You look...delectable."
Eric had to be the only vampire in the world that could compliment me in food terms and get away with it.
"Thanks, Eric." We slid into the booth and I studied him, looking for any sign of what he wanted to talk to me about. As usual, he gave nothing away. "So, what can I do for you?"
"This is more about what I'd like to do for you. Or to you, as the case may be."
That was when it happened. The speakers in Fangtasia were playing Pat Benetar's "Shadows Of The Night," but that didn't help. Out of the low hum of the brain activity that I was trying so hard to keep out, I heard the sounds of a wailing cat that signified the beginning of that song. I was distracted by it, but still managed to tell Eric, "Go on..."
"I merely wished to know if you decided when you intend to yield to me. If there's anything I could do to win more of your favor, all you have to do is ask."
On a normal night, just hearing Eric say such a thing, the way his voice trailed over the words, the slightest hint of an accent coming through, would have gained him a few points. But I was hearing the string of nonsense words that I was worried would start making sense to me if the song didn't fall out of favor.
The words fell out of my mouth before I even realized I'd sang them. "Want your bad romance..."
"You want my...what?" Eric asked.
My eyes widened and I felt my cheeks heat up. I hadn't even thought about it; that awful song always just compelled me to sing. But to anyone outside of my head, and everyone else's, that must have seemed completely out of place. "Um, sorry, I was just..."
"No, I think I understand. Your wish is to be wooed."
"My...I...what?" I asked, trying to understand how exactly this had happened. It wasn't that he was wrong. I had just never intended to give him that clue.
Eric stood again and offered me his hand. "Would you care to dance, Miss Stackhouse?"
Dazed, I took his hand and allowed him to lead me to the dance floor. As soon as we got there, the music switched to the very song I'd been trying to avoid. Groaning, I buried my head in his chest.
Oh well, I thought. After all, it could have been worse. It could have been the Macarena.