Fangtastic Childhood Friends

November 3, 2010 by  

Tara’s sitting in Sookie’s kitchen looking at a photo album. The day was shaping up to be a hot one; it was already humid and cloudy even though it was still morning. Tara was waiting for Lafayette to pick her up for a “thing” at Merlotte’s. Sam said something about an employee meeting. She had never had a job long enough to go to a meeting. Besides what could they possibly change that would make Merlott’s better? Maybe ban all wolves and vampires? Unfortunately for her, way down deep in the pit of her stomach, she knew that the supernatural were here to stay.

“Thanks, Sookie,” she mumbled to herself, thinking about all the crazy things that have happened to her lately, starting with Sookie meeting Bill.

Tara stops at the picture of her, Gran and Sookie all together. It’s a photograph that Sookie gave her for her last birthday, and it had meant a lot to her. She and Sookie are about ten in the photo, that was the day they had made three different types of cookies and cupcakes for the church bake sale. Tara had always appreciated Sookie’s Gran. She thought of her like a second mother and Sookie like the sister she never had. Her own family and home life sucked pretty bad, so it was nice to spend some time in a loving home with people who cared about one another.

She turns the page and there is a picture of her, Sookie and Lafayette at Sookie’s house for a sleepover. Originally it was supposed to be just Sookie and Tara, but Lafayette’s mom had left him alone for two days and he was hungry and scared so Gran had picked him up and brought him over.

One time when his mom was gone even longer he’d called Tara to see if he could stay with her and her mother. Tara told him to come over right away. That was the day her mom gave her two dollars to get milk from the market just up the street. She told her mom that the milk cost two dollars and fifty cents, to which she had replied “You make it enough, Tara Mae, ya’ hear.”

She remembered Lafayette snickering when she asked, “What the hell did Mama mean by that anyway?”

Tara turned the page again and a quick shriek escaped her followed with a lengthy giggle. Her fingers rubbed over a picture of her, Lafayette and Sookie when they were about eight years old. Wow, she couldn’t believe how young they looked. Mini versions of themselves frozen in time by a Polaroid. Tara frowned as her mind flashed through all that had happened in their lives since the photo was taken. Her eyes zeroed in on a scab on Lafayette’s left knee and a proud smile slowly spread across her face because she remembered exactly how Lafayette had gotten that scab…

“Come on Tara! I’m not waiting all day for you!” yelled Lafayette from the sidewalk in front of Tara’s house.

She’d just moved two houses down from where she used to live because her mother got into it with the owner of the house and he kicked them out. Of course Tara was expected to do all the work of unpacking but luckily there wasn’t much to pack and then unpack. No TV, no linens, not even a cupboard to fill with food. Tara emerged from the side of the house carrying empty garbage bags.

“I’m comin! Stop your yelling!” Tara lifted the lid to the neighbor’s garbage can and put the bags inside.

“Come on, Tara! I gotta be home early. My mom’s gonna be home tonight.” Lafayette was already walking towards the woods.

“Where are we going anyway?” Tara hollered with her hands on her hips.

“Catch up and I’ll show you. Follow me,” he yelled, not turning around.

Tara hiked up her too-big shorts that they’d just gotten the day before at the Goodwill, then sprinted to catch up to her cousin.

As they made their way further and further into the woods the noise of the neighborhood faded away. With all the wild animals in a Louisiana forest it was eerily quiet and serene. The sun shined through the sky of leaves made by tall sycamore trees, creating a kaleidoscope effect.

Lafayette began jumping to catch drooping branches, attempting to swing from branch to branch, Tarzan style.

“Where’s Sookie?” he asked.

“She’s at her uncle’s. They had to go over there while Gran is out of town,” Tara replied, stepping on fallen branches until they cracked. Just like them; Lafayette wanting to escape above all that lies below and Tara wanting to further destroy that which was beneath her.

“I thought she hated going over there,” Lafayette said.

“She does!” Tara retorted.

“I don’t know,” Lafayette looked hard at Tara, “I think something’s weird about her uncle.”

“Like what?”

“I don’t know.” He stopped and a wide grin split his face. “This is what I wanted to show you.”

They came upon a huge tree in the middle of an opening in the woods. They stood and practiced balancing on one of the large roots that lay raised on the ground like a large vein giving life to the tree. Both their heads moved upward trying find an end to the tall tree.

“Whoa…” Tara whispered.

“Help me Tara.” Lafayette bent his leg looking for Tara to give him a boost.

Tara kept staring up at the tree until she found a large hole big enough to hide in about 5 feet off the ground. Just at that moment a small bird flew out of the hole and disappeared among the leaves overhead.

“Wow, did you see that? A bird!” Tara exclaimed and pointed in the direction of the bird.

“Yeah, I know. Give me a boost. I wanna see what’s inside.”

Tara locked her fingers together and turned her palms up then Lafayette was hoisting himself up above her head. He peeked into the hole but told her he couldn’t see anything just before he pulled himself inside. Tara backed away from the tree trying to see what had happened to her cousin. Seconds later, Lafayette’s large brown eyes peered out of the dark hole and he began to sing, “He’s rocking in the tree top all day long, huffin’ and a puffin’ and singing that song…rockin robin!”

“Tweet, tweet, tweetle-leet!” Tara chimed in on the song, “Rockin’ Robin”.

Lafayette suddenly stopped singing and his eyes grew big.

“What’s wrong? Why did you stop singing?” called Tara into the tree.

“I think…” he stopped and wiggled a bit. “I think I’m stuck! Tara!” Lafayette screamed.

“Hold on! I’m coming.” Tara ran up to the tree and tried to raise her hand to reach the hole but she was too short. She ran around the tree and saw Lafayette’s legs dangling out the other side. She tried to scale the trunk of the tree to reach one of Lafayette’s feet but kept falling down before reaching it. She looked around in a panic.

“Tara help me! Mama’s gonna kill me if I’m not there when she gets home.”

“Wait, I have an idea!” Tara ran off further into the woods.

“Tara don’t you leave me! I will never speak to you again if you do! Tara? TARA!!” Lafayette yelled in an obvious panic.

Tara returned with a hollow log and propped it up against the tree. She climbed onto the log then reached up and grabbed both of Lafayette legs and pulled with all her might. She pulled so hard that she accidentally kicked the log from under her feet and it rolled away leaving Tara swinging on Lafayette’s legs. With nothing else to do, Tara used all her weight and began to wiggle and jiggle like a live fish on a hook until finally they were both plummeting to the ground and landing with a resounding thud. Tara couldn’t stop laughing while Lafayette was grabbing his knee.

“Ow! What’d you do that for? I could’a got out on my own!” said Lafayette, investigating the damage to his knee.

Still gripping her stomach and rolling on the ground Tara couldn’t stop herself from laughing. “Oh no you couldn’t! Tara…Tara…TARA!” Tara said, mocking Lafayette. “You were so scared.”

“Well, whatever. Let’s go home. I wanted a bird to take home for a pet but forget it now. I’m never coming back here.” Lafayette stood up and stomped his way out of the woods.

Tara brushed herself off as she watched him huff away. She knew he wasn’t serious. It would be just a couple of hours before he got mad at his mom and knocked on her door to see if she’d wanted to go to explore the woods again. Tara smiled, already thinking of better ways to get in and out of the hole on their next visit.

Even though it was scary at the time, she would give anything to be back there dealing with eight year old drama. It was so simple, so fun, so easy back then. If only she could get her and cousin out of jams as easy today as she had that day.

Just then she hears Lafayette honking on his way up the drive. His car is still idling as he gets out, wearing something like a kilt and a tight t-shirt? She honestly doesn’t know anymore. Tara shakes her head and rolls her eyes then gets up and puts the album away before heading into the living room. Lafayette is standing just inside the front door doing an impatient tap of his boot while pointing to his watch.

“Lets go, hooka. I don’t like being late.”

Tara is about to give her cousin a smart ass response but thinks better of it. She’s just happy to know that she’s got someone who will always be there and especially someone who ‘gets her’.

She smiles and says, “Let’s go.”

Disclaimer: “Fangtastic Childhood Friends” is provided for entertainment purposes only and is a parody of the fantasy series, True Blood, and as such is presented here for your amusement. The writers have no relationship/affiliation to HBO, True Blood, or any of the cast or crew of said program nor any relation to Charlaine Harris, or the Sookie Stackhouse novels.

Written By: Heather Adomeit and Ayondela McDole

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