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Tara first appears working at a local store dealing with a customer. Tara's behavior causes consistent problems, Sookie tells her that her employment problems would be solved by keeping her mouth shut. Tara also shows an early attraction to Jason and is strongly protective of her childhood friend Sookie. When Tara learns of Sookie's attraction to vampire Bill, her suspicions are immediately raised. Tara eventually gets a job at Merlotte's after helping out for a night. ("Strange Love")
After Sookie first date with Bill, Tara comes to her house demanding info on her vampire date. Tara keeps Sookie company when Bill comes to meet Gran and teach her more about the history of Bon Temps. During the evening, Tara showed that she still has an affection for Jason, who is unaware of this. ("The First Taste")
One night after closing the bar, Tara and Sam had a conversation about their life, which culminates with them having sex on Tara's suggestion. The following morning on her return home, her drunken mother assaults her with an empty whiskey bottle, chasing her from the house. This was the straw that broke the camel's back, and Tara decides to leave the house. She stays with her cousin Lafayette Reynolds for a while, but leaves his home after discovering his hidden cameras. Tara then stays at a motel by her own. ("Mine")
After learning that Jason is being held by police for the murders of local women, she rushes to save him making up a story, convincing the cops to release him. The same night she rushes Jason Stackhouse to the hospital due to a permanent erection caused by taking too V and stayed by his side throughout the ordeal. Afterwards, she remembers how a younger Jason was brave and protective of her, revealing this as the reason of her platonic love for him. ("Escape from Dragon House")
The next day Tara was furious at Lafayette for selling V to Jason and makes him promise to apologize. Later that night, she attends a Descendants of the Glorious Dead meeting, where Jason expresses his love for her (as he was high on V without her knowing nd wants to have sex with her), something which she doesn't believe. Her disbelief is later confirmed when she finds Jason having sex with a girl behind Merlotte's. Heartbroken, Tara walked away. ("Sparks Fly Out")
After Gran's death, Tara comforts Sookie and eventually throws Jason out of her room when he tells Sookie that it is her fault that Gran died. At the funeral she meets her mother who asks for money for an exorcism to get rid of his drinking habits, and this infuriates Tara who leaves and returns to the motel. ("Cold Ground")
After some thought, Tara visits her mother and is convinced to give her money for the ritual, noting the bad situation in which Lettie Mae finds herself. The following night, both of them visit Miss Jeanette, the woman who will perform the ceremony. After handing over four hundred bucks, Lettie Mae gets her exorcism. Just as they are about to leave, Miss Jeanette tells Tara that she also has a demon, even more powerful than the one possessing Lettie Mae, but Tara just leaves indifferent, showing no belief. ("Burning House of Love")
The next day Tara is amazed at Lettie Mae’s seemingly instant recovery but has an even greater change in attitude towards others and has confrontations with her close friends and her cousin Lafayette. This causes Tara to reconsider Miss Jeanette's words and starts thinking that she may need an exorcism of her own. She decides to visit Miss Jeanette again and ask her about any detail on her demon. ("The Fourth Man in the Fire")
Although not fully convinced about the exorcism thing, Tara decided to go ahead with it but did not have the required money. She later meets Sam and tells him about the demon within her, and eventually she finds the money she needed hidden in an envelope. She declines this offer by Sam but later on accepts it. ("Plaisir D'Amour")
After work Tara visits Miss Jeanette, ready to go through the exorcism. On the process of the ritual she sees an image of her own self as a kid with black void eyes and Jeanette tells her that this is her sick soul and she must kill it with the knife. Tara does so and is covered in blood. She believes it was a true ritual and feels comforted. The very next morning, Tara was all smiles when she headed over to her post-alcoholic mother’s house to tell her about her demon being released from her body. Both of them start a new beginning. Later, while on the road with a dizzy Lettie Mae, she stops at a local pharmacy to buy her mother some medicine. There she meets a disguised Jeanette something that proved all the ritual fake. Tara was upset to learn that she was suckered and was not healed and also feared that her mom would return to drinking so decided to keep it a secret. Later that night, an enraged Tara lost control by drinking and showed up at Sam's place drunk and in her prom dress, trying to get action from Sam, but he refused her out of respect. Tara leaves rejected and as droves she sees a woman with a pig in the middle of the road. Trying to avoid the couple she runs the car into a tree. ("I Don't Wanna Know")
Tara is arrested by Kenya for driving while drunk. When her mother denies any help as this would not help her at all, Tara is frustrated and tells Lettie Mae to leave. When her mom says she loves her, she says she doesn't, and never did. While in holding, Kenya informs Tara that a lady paid the bail. The woman is named Maryann Foster and is some kind of social worker who offers help to people like her. Tara, with no other options, accepts Maryann's offer and goes to her home. ("To Love Is to Bury")
Tara arrives at Maryann's home, a large house just outside of Bon Temps, and is bedazzled by the life of luxury thrust upon her. The next day Tara has breakfast with Maryann and questioned about her job and why she is helping her. Soon after she meets Eggs Talley, a young man also recovering and finding his feet, and Karl, Maryann's thankless manservant. That night, upon learning Sookie was attacked by Rene, Tara goes to see her and comforts her. For two weeks Tara stay at Maryann's house and forges a bond with all of the residents. One night at Merlotte's she, along with Sookie and Andy, discover the dead body of Miss Jeanette in Andy's car. ("You'll Be the Death of Me")