Friday, March 21, 2008

Ring of Fire

"TC," Randy’s voice came over the speaker between the studio and the control room, "we’re going to have to do it again. Take it from the top."

"What was wrong with that one?" TC asked, pushing the headphone off her left ear.

"Uh," Randy hesitated, he knew this woman’s infamous temper well. "Do you know the story behind this song?"

"Yeah," she answered, the ‘duh’ she left unsaid, but it was implied in her tone, "everyone in country music knows the legend behind this song."

"I want the same feeling out of you that they put into writing it," Randy replied, flinching from the expected burst of temper.

TC frowned, but no outburst came. "I’m puttin’ it in there," she told him.

"I’m not feeling it," Randy responded, "make me feel it."

TC didn’t answer him, but she muttered several curses under her breath. Randy Jackson had been working on this project for awhile. He wanted to do a tribute album with artists singing Johnny Cash’s biggest hits. Other artists had been asked to sing on the album, but been assigned the song they would sing. TC’s favorite Cash song was and had always been Ring of Fire. So, she had told Randy she would be happy to perform on the album, but only if she could do that song. Reluctantly, Randy had agreed. He’d really wanted a man to do that song, but he also really wanted TC on the album. She was the biggest female name in country music right now, and it would be a huge boon to have her on the project. Randy had asked her if she would rather do Jackson as a duet with someone, but she’d refused, saying she wouldn’t do that one unless Jon agreed to do it with her. Jon couldn’t; he was busy with his own projects right now and didn’t have time. So, it was Ring of Fire or nothing.

The intercom was still on between the rooms, and Randy heard TC’s muttering. But, that also meant that TC heard the comment from her bodyguard that was in the control room with Randy.

"If you want the feeling of the song, maybe you should put Jon in the studio with her," Rick suggested.

"I heard that," she grumbled. "I’ll show you jackasses. I put feeling into songs long before I met my husband; I don’t need him for this one."

Randy glared at Rick, as if to say ‘Just shut up, I didn’t need your help’. Then spoke to the angry woman in the studio, "Let’s just take it from the top one more time."

TC left the studio that afternoon pissed and a little depressed. They had tried take after take and she still couldn’t get it just right. She even had to admit that to herself once she’d heard what they had recorded. She walked into the hotel suite with her head down and fell across the bed in frustration.

Jon and Richie had been in Nashville for several months working on their latest project, and when TC came up to work on the Cash project, she’d moved into Jon’s suite temporarily. Jon waved at Richie as he went into his suite next door, then walked into his temporary home and kicked off his shoes by the door. It had been a long day in the studio. He and Rich were having some trouble with one of the songs. He walked into the bedroom and found his wife laying across the bed, in an apparent pout.

"Not that I’m not happy to find you exactly where I’ve imagined you all damn day," he said in greeting, "but in my imagination you were naked."

She lay face down on the bed with her head resting on her folded arms, but looked over her shoulder at her husband. It still amazed her that this beautiful man was all hers. "I could be persuaded to get that way," she told him, smiling.

Jon walked over to join her on the bed. He laid down on his side next to her and began to rub her back in soothing little circles. "Wanna talk about it?" he asked gently.

"Talk about gettin’ naked?" she questioned, "Naaa, I’d rather just get down to it. You know me....A little less talk and a lot more action. That’s my motto."

"Teece," he said softly, "you know what I mean."

"Not really," she muttered, dropping her head back down on her arms.

"I’ll tell you mine, if you tell me yours," he encouraged.

"Ya call that a deal?" she answered, her voice muffled by the down comforter on the bed.

He bent over and whispered silkily in her ear, "Ok, tell me all about it, and I’ll make mad passionate love to you ‘til you forget all about it."

"You’ll make ‘mad passionate love to me ‘til I forget all about it’ anyway," she answered, her voice still muffled.

She really didn’t want to have to admit to Jon what the problem was. TC was afraid that she’d lost it. When she’d been recording her last cd, there had been a song on it that she couldn’t put the right feeling into, and Jon had come into the studio and played guitar on the song. He’d told her to just sing it to him. The version that went on the cd was just her singing with Jon’s acoustic guitar as her only accompaniment. Never in a million years did she want to have to admit to her very talented husband that she had lost the ability to put the proper feeling into a song unless he was sitting in the studio with her.

"But," he tried again, "it would make you feel better if you’d talk about it."

"That’s bullshit and you know it," she answered, "cut it out, Jersey. I don’t wanna talk about it and that’s it. If you’re gonna make mad passionate love to me, just get on with it."

"Teece," Jon replied, "I know you too well. What’s this got to do with me? And why don’t you wanna talk to me about it?"

TC flopped over on her back and flung one arm up over her face. "Dayum it, Jon," she mumbled in frustration.

Jon waited patiently. He knew he’d finally pushed her to talking, but he might have to wait a few minutes for her to get started. He loved this woman to distraction, but she could be really difficult at times.

"I’ve lost it," she finally cried.

"Lost what?" he asked, puzzled.

"It, Jon," she answered impatiently, "ya know, that it that every creative person has. That defining it that makes us special."

"I seriously doubt that," he told her, smiling.

She didn’t miss the heated blue gaze that moved from her eyes down the length of her body. "Jersey," she admonished, "that’s not what I meant, and you know it."

He shook his blond head, trying to dispel the image of her beneath him naked and moaning his name that had flashed through his mind. "Right," he told her, "let me get my head back in this conversation."

"I think your head was trying to get in the conversation," she muttered.

He flashed her that million mega watt smile. "Sorry," he said, sounding anything but apologetic. "Start from the top."

She told him about her day at the studio, ending with, "And Rick had the audacity to suggest that if Randy wanted the proper feeling in the song, then he should get you to sit in the studio with me."

"Teece," Jon tried to placate her; her temper was close to boiling again.

"Seriously, Jon," she replied, "Randy suggested that I just give it up and do Jackson with Keith instead."

"Over my dead body," Jon replied heatedly, "there’s no way I’m letting you in a damn studio to record a duet with that sexy Aussie."

"Jersey, your jealousy’s showing," she pointed out, smiling. "Can we get back to me, now?"

"Teece, I could come by the studio for a few minutes and sit in there with you if you wanted me to," he told her.

"No, dayum it!" she exclaimed. "I’m going to do this on my own or not at all, and I’ll be dayumed if I’ll do anything but Ring of Fire."

Jon leaned over her and kissed her softly. "How ‘bout I give you something to remember then while you’re in the studio tomorrow?"

She threaded her fingers through his hair. "Now, that sounds like a deal."

Jon moved to straddle her hips, then helped her pull her shirt off over her head. He placed hot, open mouthed kisses along her collar bone then down to lick at one nipple through the lace of her bra. That didn’t pacify him for long though and soon he was opening the front clasp to let the scrap of fabric fall on either side of her.

When his mouth moved back to her nipple, she gasped his name. Her hands caressed their way down his shoulders and across his muscled chest, molding the soft cotton of his t-shirt more tightly to him. When her hands finally found the bottom of the t-shirt at his waist, she pulled it up until her small hands were caressing his bare skin. He quickly tossed the offending piece of clothing off over his head, where it landed forgotten on the floor.

With one hand caressing her right breast, his mouth blazed a fiery path down her stomach, but he moaned her name when her hands began to work at the button of his jeans and brushed across his arousal. Her hands, like gasoline on a small spark, ignited an inferno even through the thick denim, and his hips involuntarily thrust forward into her.

"Hold still," she murmured.

"I’m a little busy here, Teece," he answered against the satiny skin of her stomach, before his tongue dipped inside her navel.

"But now I can’t reach your zipper," she complained.

"Fuck my zipper," he quipped, and began to undo the button of her jeans.

"I’d rather not," she answered, "I had something better in mind to fuck."

"Damn it, Teece," he complained, "we’ve been doing this for years now, I’d think you’d be faster at getting me undressed." He stopped trying to undo her jeans, and quickly unfastened his own.

"I guess I could just keep you naked all the time," she suggested, grinning seductively up at him.

"That could cause a problem in the studio with the guys," he pointed out as he pushed his jeans over his hips.

"I guess you’re right," she said, sounding disappointed, "and on stage in front of all those screaming women."

"There ya go," he agreed, tossing his pants in the floor, "you’d have a fit if I went out on stage naked." Then he moved to pull her jeans down her long legs.

"I think I hear millions of women all around the world crying," she laughed, tossing her bra in the air to let it join the rapidly growing pile of clothing.

"Nope," he answered quickly, "that’s just me, dying to be inside you." Carelessly, he tossed her jeans towards the foot of the bed, not paying attention to where they fell.

"Take it easy, Jersey," she smirked, "you’ll be screaming my name soon enough."

"And you’ll be moaning mine," he promised, then licked a long path up her leg, pausing to gently bite the inside of her thigh, before laving the small wound with his tongue.

"Jon," she sighed, as her fingers gripped his hair.

He stroked her curls, letting his fingertips comb through them a few times, and smiled to himself thinking about how long it had taken them to grow back after she had decided to surprise him with a smooth mound. She hadn’t taken it too kindly when he explained that it made him feel like a pedophile going down on her without some "fur" impeding his progress. Parting her with his thumbs he eagerly lapped at her clit, hearing her moan in response. Gently, he took her clit between his teeth, then sucked hard. He was rewarded with her gasp of pleasure.

"Jersey," she said, huskily, "please."

"Please what, Teece?"

"Fuck my brains out," she answered, hoarsely.

"But I’m not done," he argued against her thigh.

"You’re done enough," she pleaded, "please. I need you. Now."

He moved up and over her, quickly thrusting home. TC locked her legs around his waist, drawing him in deeper. He sighed her name as her silken trap seemed to pull at him. She clutched at his shoulders, before skimming her hands up his throat to grip his hair again, and pull him down for a kiss. His tongue thrust into her mouth imitating the motion of his hips as he drove into her.

Breaking the kiss, he pulled back to look at her face. Her eyes were squeezed closed, and she had her bottom lip tucked tightly between her pearly white teeth. He desperately wanted to look into the emerald depths of her eyes. "Open your eyes, Teece," he begged.
Opening her eyes, she smiled at him. She knew him too well; he loved her changeable eyes and loved to watch them go to darkest emerald when she came, little did he know that his own eyes darkened during their lovemaking. Emerald met sapphire, and he thrust once more, feeling her walls start to spasm around him.

"I’m coming, Jon, " she screamed, gripping his shoulders tightly.

He smiled down at her. "I’m sure, Rich didn’t need to know that," he told her, right before he felt his own orgasm coming on. He thrust against her twice more, emptying himself inside her.

Collapsing on top of her, he tried desperately to catch his breath. With their chests pressed tightly together she could feel his racing heart, and was sure he could feel hers. Tenderly, she combed his hair off his forehead. "I love you, Jersey," she whispered.

"I love you too, Teece," he answered.

The next day, TC paced the confines of the studio while Randy made some adjustments in the control room. She was trying to concentrate on the feel of Jon’s hands on her body and the smell of his skin when he had made love to her the night before. Anything, that would put the necessary feeling into her voice when she stepped in front of the microphone.

"Okay, TC, we’re ready," Randy announced over the intercom. "Let’s do this."

She walked over and took the headphones that were hanging on the mic and put them on. "Okay, I’m ready."

She heard the opening notes of the song in her ears and closed her eyes. Trying to picture Jon, the way he looked above her, she began to sing.

Love is a burning thing,
and it makes a fiery ring.
Bound by wild desire,
I fell into a ring of fire.

"Cut," Randy’s voice sounded in her headphones.

"What now?" she demanded.

"Almost, TC," he answered, "you’re almost there, but put just a little more emotion into it."

"Dayum, Randy," she complained, "whaddya want? Blood?"

"Teece," she heard Jon’s voice, "you can do this."

"Fuck," she swore violently, "Jon, I told you I didn’t need you here. I said I could do this myself."

"I’m not here to help," he defended, "I’m just here to watch. Besides, I’m not in the studio with you."

"You better keep it that way, Jersey," she warned. "Randy, get me a headset mic, I need to move."

"Coming right up," Randy answered, and clicked off the intercom. He quickly sent a tech to get the requested equipment.

"Can’t she just dance in front of the mic she has?" Richie asked.

"Shhh," Jon told his friend. "It’s best if you just keep quiet. No sense letting her know you’re here too. That would really piss her off."

"Why?" Richie questioned. "She didn’t say I couldn’t come."

"Just shut up and listen, Rich," Jon ordered.

They watched through the tinted glass as the tech handed her a wireless headset microphone. TC slipped it on her head. "Now that feels better," she said to no one in particular.

"Let’s try it again," Randy told her.

The music started again in her ear and she began to move sensuously to the beat. The horns had a deep sexy sound to them and she let them invade her mind. This time when she began to sing, the throaty quality to her voice melted every male heart. Except one. He heard it on a regular basis, when she moaned his name as she came apart in his arms. The sound warmed his heart and made his jeans just a little tighter.

She started the second verse.

The taste of love is sweet,
when hearts like ours meet.
I fell for you like a child,
and oh, how the fire went wild.

I fell into a burning ring of fire,
I went down, down, down,
And the flames went higher.
But it burns, burns, burns
The ring of fire,
The ring of fire.

Jon smiled at the way her voice almost sounded like she was in pain when she sang the word ‘burns’. When the music faded away, Randy yelled in triumph, and the other men in the control room cheered. All but Jon, he just smirked. He’d known she could do it all along.

"I told ya’ll I could do it," she yelled, "do a different song, my ass."

"Damn it, girlfriend," Randy laughed, "why didn’t you ask for that headset two days ago?"


Becky said...

I LOVED this, T! I was browsing Hath's directory and the tagline for this story intrigued me, so I started reading and got sucked in. Very well-written, it captures emotion and lust perfectly, and I love the 'inspiration'. And I love that TC calls Jon 'Jersey'. ;)

Great job!

Johnny Yuma said...

Hi T,
You are a terrific writer. Maybe you would check out one or two of mine just to see what you think if you don't mind.

Johnny Yuma AKA Damon D. Brewer