He walked down the red carpet at the music awards with all the guys hating even having to be there. If they weren’t playing on stage tonight, he could have cared less about the best album nomination award they were up for. They all had tons of gold and platinum albums on their walls… who cared if he got another one. But as the lights flashed and women screamed his name, he walked down to where the reporters asking their questions.
The first couple of interviews weren’t too bad. They ran along the lines of, are you excited about the best album? Or, What do you think about being chosen for five out of five of the awards tonight? And, Is Death Ever After going to putting out their next album any time soon? Those questions were fine, but the last reporter, she got pushy about his and Addison’s relationship and asked if they were back together? He smiled and then told her that his personal life was none of her fucking business… and that’s when Nickels came over, pushing him along to handle the woman.
He took his seat next to Howie and grumbled under his breath. He hated having to sit with all the assholes around him for hours and having to listen to all the pretentious bull shit. He crossed his arms, waiting for the show to begin, and thought about how Addison had been acing for the last couple weeks. If he wasn’t so damn busy, he would’ve hopped on a jet to go and see if there was anything wrong. There was a part of him that was worried that she was changing her mind about them getting back together. Maybe now that he’d been gone for a while, she realized that she was better off without him.
He was lost in his thoughts as the first band came on stage when Howie leaned over. “Hey, I don’t want to piss you off more then what you already are, but… look three rows down and sitting next to Tia’s ex, Andy.”
Jimmy’s eyes followed in the direction Howie said and then saw who Howie was talking about. “Fucking hell… that’s just great.” He groaned as Crystal’s blond hair turned and spoke to Tia’s ex. But he also saw that fucker South sitting right next to her. “Just fucking great.”
Jones leaned over and saw what they were looking at and slumped in his seat, trying not to be noticed. “Let’s just leave it alone. I don’t want to start any shit. So, I say we just steer clear of her ass and call it a night. I don’t want Margie to even know I’m in the same fucking building as that woman.”
“Yeah, that makes two of us.” Jimmy agreed.
After a long-ass night of playing on stage, accepting three of the five awards, the damn thing was over. Then after the show, he went backstage and signed autographs, took pictures with the fans, and some sick children who Nickels had donated tickets to with their families.
By the time everything was done, he just wanted to call his baby girl to hear her voice and then crash. But instead, he changed out of his clothes and grabbed a bottle of water when Nickels told him they had an after-party to go to. “Damn, I’m too tired to think straight, let alone go deal with those assholes.” He groaned. But got himself back in the limo with the rest of the guys to help promote the band.
The women had been staying away from him, which was good, but an old dealer that he used to get his shit from started to make his way over when Jones intervened. He stood there, watching all the people party, mingle with all the fakeness, drink, and fuck right before his now sober eyes. He couldn’t believe that he used to be one of these stupid fucks but was now done with the whole fucking thing.
He was talking to Jones about Margie having their baby on Saturday when South walked up. “Hey man, do you have a minute?”
Jimmy glanced up, finding Dax, who was glaring at him and South and grinned. “Yeah, sure.” He answered, giving Jones a shrug before following South to a private corner. They stood in the back away from most of the people, but South didn’t say anything. “So, what’s up?”
South ran his hand through his hair and sighed. “I wanted to give you a heads up.”
“Well, Andy has been screwing around with that bitch Crystal for the last six months.”
“So… what does that have to do with me?”
“More than you might think. When I saw all that shit that happened at Ad’s place online, I couldn’t believe they found out about the two of you. The last thing Ad needed was that kind of shit in her life after losing Win. But then I remembered telling Rex and Andy about me going over to Addison’s place and finding you there... and shit started to come together.” South explained.
“You know, I thought it might’ve been you who said something about Addie and me.” He admitted.
“I wouldn’t ever do anything like that to her. Like I told you, I love Ad, but if she loves you, then I’m not going to get in the way of it.”
“So, are you telling me that you think Crystal was the one who sold us out to the tabloids?” He asked.
“Yeah, that’s what I’m thinking,” South answered. “You should watch yourself around that woman. She fucking hates your ass with a passion. I wouldn’t put it past her to do something to try and break you and Ad up… especially after Lynn busted up her marriage to Mickey.”
“You think so?”
“Yeah, I really do.” South nodded.
“Well, thanks for letting me know.”
“Yeah, just be good to her, alright.” South grinned before walking off.
Jimmy’s hand went over his mouth as a shit load of questions came rushing through his mind, and then he saw Nickels. He walked over and pulled him from a group of people and away from prying eyes. “What the hell, Jim? That was a fucking Hollywood producer that was interested in at making a movie about the band.” Nickels griped.
“Fuck Nickels, I don’t want to do a fucking movie, don’t you get that? I don’t even want to be in the fucking band anymore. “He growled. “Besides, I think I just found out who called the paparazzi on Addie and me.”
“Crystal?” Nickels asked, looking confused. “You mean Crystal, Crystal? The one who is the bane of my fucking existence, Crystal? You're kidding me, right?”
“No I’m not kidding, I’m dead fucking serious. It seems that Crystal isn’t done fucking with me yet.”
Nickels’ head shot around to find the woman in question off in the distance. “How did you find this out?”
“South came over and told me that Tia’s ex-husband has been sleeping with that bitch. Then told me in so many words that he ranted to Rex and Andy about finding me over at Addie’s place.” He explained.
“So, you’re thinking that she was the one having someone follow you and Addie around to take photos?” Nickels murmured.
“Makes sense, doesn’t it? Try to get Addison to leave me because of her face plastered all over the internet. Plus, having that fucking article about all the women I’ve slept with last year.” He growled.
“Yeah, it does make sense. I’ll give you that.”
“But South also warned me to watch my back. It looks like Crystal is still fucking pissed over what Lynn did to her and Mickey’s marriage, and might be looking for revenge.” He explained.
“Fuck… the last thing we need right now is that bitch trying to pull some stunt. Especially when I’m just trying to keep this band together.” Nickels growled, pulling out his cell. “You just steer clear of her…were out of here in forty-five minutes.”
“Fine, but you better give Jones and Howie a heads up on what’s going on. Who knows what that woman could pull to destroy me.”
“Or us...” Nickels answered.
“Yeah, that too.” He said then started to walk in the opposite direction of the blond nightmare that was now looking his way. He pulled out his cell and looked at the time knowing it was two in the morning in Nashville, but wanted to hear his woman’s voice. It rang only once before she answered.
“Hey baby, everything okay?” She answered.
“Yeah, everything’s fine, baby girl. I wanted to hear your voice.” He grinned, walking to find a quieter place to talk. “Hey, it sounds like you were awake. Is everything okay?”
“Yeah, I’m still feeling sick is all.” She sighed.
“You’re still sick? Addie, maybe you should go to the doctors to make sure everything’s okay.”
“No, I don’t need to go to the doctors, I’m fine, I promise. But that reminds me, I have something I’ve wanted to ask you for a couple weeks now.”
“Well, first, what do you have going on tomorrow?” She asked.
“You know Nick, he’s got some interviews for us in the morning, and then we’re working on signing a couple new bands to the label. Then on Thursday, we’re supposed to record the first track to the new album. Why?”
“Oh, it’s nothing, I was just wondering is all.”
“Addison, just tell me what’s going on.”
“I was just hoping you weren’t so busy so you could come home for a day or two. There’s something really important I need to talk to you about.”
“Can’t you just tell me now?”
“I don’t want to tell you something like this over the phone. Plus, you’re at a party. This is something that should really be said in person.”
“Are you breaking up with me?” He asked, feeling his heart pounding in his chest.
“What, no, of course not. It’s nothing like that at all.” She assured him and then sighed. “I have something to tell you, and I think it’s something wonderful. But I’m hoping you will think it’s just a wonderful as I do.”
He was quiet, trying to figure out what was going on. “Well, I know Jones was just telling me that he was heading back home on Saturday because you’re inducing Margie.”
“Yeah, poor Margie is two weeks past due and completely miserable. She’s so hoping for a little girl this time, but I guess we’ll soon see.” She laughed.
“Then, I’ll just catch the flight with him. Is that okay?” He answered.
“Really? That would be great.” She said, and he could hear the smile in her voice.
“Hey, anything my girl wants, she gets.” He chuckled.
“Well, I also wanted to let you know that I watched the awards tonight with the boys.”
“Yes, I did, and I thought you were the sexiest man there. Do you think you can sing to me like that when you take me to bed?” Her rough voice purred.
“Damn it, baby girl, you’re making the next four days until I see you really hard… and I mean that literally.” He growled.
“Good, it gives you more to look forward to. Call me tomorrow when you can.”
“You know, I will.” He chuckled. “Hey, I love you.”
“I love you too. Talk to you tomorrow… bye.” She whispered before hanging up.
He couldn’t help but smile like a kid; he was that fucking happy. And he couldn’t help but wonder what was so important that she wanted him to come home. But he was too exhausted to think anymore about it as his hands ran over his tired face. Being on the road and staying busy was what used to keep him sane. It helped in not having his mind wander about the woman he loved and lost. But now that woman was waiting for him, along with two little boys, and he wanted nothing more than to be home with them.
Nickels was pushing for him and Dax to make up. But the friendship he had with Dax since they were kids was over. They hated each other, and there was no hiding it. They could barely stand to be in the same room together, let alone days on end in a recording studio. Dax had even walked out several times while they were working on songs... not to mention the couple brawls they had between each other.
He made his way far from the party and found a sofa and sat down. His eyes were starting to closed when someone sat next to him and glanced over and saw it was Jones. “What are you doing, dip shit.”
“Just seeing what your ass was doing over here.”
“I was trying to get away from all the noise. I’m just so fucking tired… and I hate going to these things now. I don’t want any of these women coming on to me or any of my old dealers trying to sell me shit.” He admitted.
“Must suck to be getting so old.” Jones chuckled.
“Fuck off. Oh, and just so you know, I’m going home with you on Saturday.”
“Cool, you can be the first to meet my next little one.” Jones winked.
Jimmy sat up, looking his friend over. “Why are you really here, asshole?”
Jones took a sip of his beer, slumping back into the sofa. “I’ve got some chick that won’t leave my ass alone. And I mean that she doesn’t know what the word no means. So, I told Nickels I’m fucking out of here and see if you wanted to leave to.”
“Yeah, I’m more than ready to go myself.” He admitted.
“Let me get Howie, and then we’ll get the fuck out of here,” Jones said, getting up. “I’ll come back to get you in a minute.”
“Sound good,” He sighed and then closed his eyes.
His head was full of violet eyes, pink porcelain lips, long blond hair, and a voice so deep that when she said his name, it made him shiver. He couldn’t wait until Saturday when he has his woman back in his arms and make love to her. It was almost like he could feel the warm skin under his hand, making him groan. He thought it was one of his dreams torturing him again when he felt lips on his, and then a tongue slip into his mouth.
His eyes popped open to see what the hell was going on when he saw Crystal. It was her who had kissed him and was straddling his lap. “From the sound of it, you missed me…” She giggled.
That’s when he realized his hands were not only on Crystal’s thighs but under her skirt. He reached up, peeling her arms from around his neck and jumped up, having her fall to the ground with a thud. “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?!” He snarled.
She frowned, picking herself up from the floor and fixed her skirt. “What, I thought you’d like a quickie since you and Addison are back together. If memory serves… you always came running back to my bed when you were with her. If you ask me, I think you like the excitement of it when you cheat, and I was looking for some fun tonight.”
“You fucking whore. You just stay the hell away from me and keep your skanky ass away from Addison. Do you hear me?” He growled.
“You’re such a fucking asshole!” She seethed.
“Yeah, I am, so get used to it. And like I told you before… you’re a lousy screw. So, go find another fuck for the night, because I’m not interested.” He told her, turning to go find Jones and get the fuck out of here.
“You’re a real son of a bitch, James Richardson. But don’t worry, I’ll get my payback. You can count on it!” She hissed.
“Whatever bitch...” He murmured as he walked away. He found Howie and Jones and went over to get them. “I’m ready to go now.” He informed the two of them.
“Yeah, I’m with you. I’m more than ready. I just had some woman come and start dry humping me against a fucking wall! I couldn’t get her to leave me alone.” Howie told him.
“I just texted Nickels, and he’s going to meet us outside,” Jones said. “It looks like some chick just tried to fuck him in the men’s bathroom.”
Jimmy walked out into the cold night air, and South’s warning came back to him. “You know, this shit seems a little too coincidental if you ask me. I’ve got Crystal shoving her tongue down my throat, you guys have women bugging the hell out of you. I mean, I know we have women pick up on us, but tonight was just strange.”
“Yeah, but who would be doing this kind of shit to us. I mean, what’s the purpose... holy shit, Crystal.” Jones murmured.
“That’s what I was thinking too. I don’t think Crystal wants to destroy only my ass, but all of our asses. We need to steer clear of that woman because I have a feeling she’s about to pull some dirty shit if we’re not careful.” He warned.
“Just fucking great! Damn it, that woman is worse than the fucking plague.” Jones seethed.
“There’s nothing we can do now. But at least we got a heads up to what’s going on. That’s something, at least.” He offered to the guys. But deep down, he knew the shit was about ready to hit the fan. He just didn’t know when.