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"TEASING ME" SEASON 2, EPISODE 11"

 Teasing Me

Season 2

Episode 11

The Club Deep parking lot is practically empty when I pull in. It’s well before opening, so it’s not surprising, but still, without the cars, this building looks more like an abandoned office building than a popular club. But I suppose that’s at least partially the point. I’ve come early to fill out my paperwork, and I hope I finish it before Cosette arrives. After the awkwardness last night, I don’t know how to tell her about the absolutely ridiculous salary that I’m going to get. I think that news has to come later, with a lot of tequila shots between us. Or maybe I won’t tell her at all. I can’t really see how her knowing that I’m making more than four times her salary is going to help anything. She’s already hesitant about both of us working here, and I want her to be happy.

Early in the morning, the club is almost unrecognizable. With normal fluorescent lights instead of the roving colors, this looks like an industrial loft space. Funny, you never think about the way a night club looks in the daytime. Probably part of the charm. They’re places that can really only exist at night, when you can be in the shadows and your better judgement takes a vacation. Time will tell if my better judgement was present last night or not. One thing’s for sure, my boss at the restaurant wasn’t happy to find out I was quitting, and I wasn’t sticking around for two weeks’ notice either. Yeah, I don’t think I’ll be eating there any time soon.

“Hello?” I call across the club because I don’t see anyone, and I have no idea where Randall swept Cosette off to last night for all the employment stuff.

A man appears from behind one of the bars carrying a box full of glassware. Seeing me, he gives me a once over, and I’m not sure what conclusion he comes to. “You need something?”

“First day as a dancer,” I say, explaining. “I need to fill out paperwork?”

He points behind the bar. “Double doors back there, second office on the right.”

“Thanks.”

Pushing through the double doors, I find a hallway not unlike the one I spent some time in last night, even if this one seems more worn. The fluorescent lights sputter a little, and paint is peeling in places. The second door on the right is open, and I knock on the frame as I look inside. “Hello?”

Randall looks up from the desk and gives me a sarcastic smile. “Oh, it’s you. Mr. Rivers told me that you’d changed your mind.”

“Yeah.”

The disdain is practically rippling off him. “Sit down.” I do, and he gives me a clipboard full of papers. “Basic employment stuff. W-2, direct deposit, employee questionnaire guidelines. Let me know when you’re done.”

He goes back to typing on his computer. I don’t like Randall. I mean, I’m sure he’s got some kind of redeeming quality to be employed here, but I don’t like the vibe he gives off. Thankfully, I’ve done this kind of paperwork so many times over the past few years that it doesn’t take me long, and it’s only a few minutes before I hand the clipboard last night.

“Good.” He gives me another look down his nose. “I heard that you got a tour of the place last night, so we’ll skip that. Follow me and I’ll show you the costume room.”

He leads me out of the room, further down the hallway and through another set of double doors. I fight to keep my jaw from falling to the floor. This room is huge, with double-high racks of clothing filling the space. I spot a little bit of everything, from tiny sparkly bikinis to a corset with some LEDs attached. “Most of these are for theme nights, and we’ll let you know when you need to choose one. Those you don’t get to keep.” He leads me to a corner of the room with more traditional looking club wear. “This is the normal dance-wear. Choose three outfits, you’ll get to switch them out in a few weeks. You’ll learn the schedule. When you’re done, head to the dressing room. I’ll give you and the other new dancers a quick orientation before opening.”

He disappears through the racks of clothes, and I can’t help being a little bit relieved. I look around, taking in the racks of clothes. This is insane. And amazing. The more I find out about this place, the more those two words seem to go together to describe it. I start to flip through the clothes and there’s anything you could ever want, really. I know my first choice the moment I see it: A royal blue 1960s mini-dress that’s covered in sequins. With the lights in the club, that dress is going to look like a disco ball, and I’m thinking hell yes. And the thought of Julian seeing me in that dress, all legs and glitter is a bonus. I can’t keep the grin off my face. No job should be this fun.

_________



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