by Lord Malinov
“I can save you, traitor,” the Princess hissed. “My father wants to believe in you and I can persuade him.” She paused and gave her prisoner an inviting look. “There is a condition. You must renounce Aida and marry me.” A fierce, determined gleam in Theresa’s eyes spoke volumes. She slammed her notebook down on the table for emphasis. Silence let the noise echo.
“I cannot,” Scott replied weakly, unprepared to offer up the noble surrender of his life. He looked up at the woman. “Never. I love her.” The emotion in his voice trembled.
“Good,” shouted the director enthusiastically. “Perfect, Theresa. Scott, you need to speak with more courage and conviction. But I think you two have the right idea. Let’s break for lunch and when we get back we’ll do some more improv on the scene. Think about what has happened in the script and what will happen next. I want each of you to understand your characters completely before we start singing.
“Actors,” grumbled Scott as he stepped off stage.
“C’mon,” said Theresa, taking his hand and pulling him behind her. Scott followed, a little disturbed to be submitting to the demanding mezzo-soprano in front of the rest of the cast, but not quite daring a fit of independence so early in the production. Once they’d escaped the curious eyes of their fellows, he accepted her command with a ready eagerness. Theresa opened the door to her dressing room and showing him in, she locked the door behind them.
“I had the caterers bring some trays back here. I thought we could discuss our scenes while we ate. I hope you don’t mind.”
“I think it’s a marvelous idea,” said Scott, sitting on a loveseat.
“Good. I’d hoped you would accommodate my flights of fancy. I am so anxious that this production go well, and with you as our tenor, I think our show will be delicious.” Theresa twirled and sat beside her leading man.
“Thank you,” said Scott, reaching for a sandwich. “I meant to thank you before. I know you’re the reason I’m here.”
“Nonsense,” said Theresa, laughing. “You deserved the role. Who else could play the passionate general with so much strength, so much verve, so much voice? I don’t think there was ever any choice.”
“Still, with you father producing the opera, I mean. You . . .”
“Daddy’s indulged me in choosing the role, but he wouldn’t throw away money, even for me. Only the best were chosen for this show.”
“And you chose Amneris? I mean, why didn’t you take Aida’s role?”
“Don’t kid me, Scott. I’ll be lucky to hit the B flat. Don’t even dream about me hitting high C without a whole lot of orchestra drowning that screech out. Besides, I think I can understand the spoiled daughter role better than most.” Scott sputtered a heart-felt laugh, choking back the sandwich and his fear of offending the lady.
“Fair enough. I’m going to be struggling myself. Maybe you can get the caterer to bring us an extra bottle of brandy before the show to loosen our chords.”
“Hmmm,” said Theresa, putting her china-like hands on Scott’s shoulder, playfully. “I wouldn’t want us getting too drunk to control ourselves.” Scott smiled with a twinge of anxiety and took a bite of his thick hunk of Italian bread.
“No,” he said, his mouth still full, “I wouldn’t think more than a sip would be necessary.”
“Still,” said Theresa, her hands moving down the tenor’s chest, “we don’t have to maintain too much control.”
Scott felt himself draw away from the aggressive touch of his companion, anxious to keep her good grace and yet unprepared to give himself up so easily. Her hands fell down to tease his thigh, and he stood up suddenly.
“Do you have anything to drink?” he asked.
“Sure, mon general. Let me pour you some of my favorite wine.” She leaned over to retrieve the bottle from beneath the serving trays. Ice water dripped from the French label. “Could you open it, please? I’m all thumbs with corkscrews.” Scott nodded shyly and took the bottle from her hands. He turned the metal spiral into the cork. Theresa rubbed an unashamed hand over the crotch of his trousers. Scott blushed and pulled at the cork. Theresa unzipped his fly.
“Mmmm,” she said. “I’m going to like working with you.”
“Theresa,” he said, putting the bottle down and turning away slightly. She took hold of his hips and drew him closer.
“Pour some wine,” she instructed him, boldly fishing in the darkness of his pants. His cock fell softly into her eager fingers. “Hmmm,” she murmured. Scott reached awkwardly for the glasses. Theresa pulled his thickening member from the confines of cloth. Scott poured the wine. Theresa suckled his prick.
“Oh,” he said nervously, feeling the rush of adrenalin and unbidden excitement in his blood. She pushed the stiffening rod deep into her mouth. He put a hand through her silky hair.
He thought for a second of Andrea. She would never forgive this.
As Theresa slipped her tongue wet over the length of his prick, the mezzo-soprano began to hum. “Theresa,” the tenor moaned. “Don’t,” he said, his voice trailing softly as she sucked to the first line of their impassioned duet. She continued to play and lightly sing. Scott found himself gently intoning his lines as they arose in the succession of rhythm and fevered emotion. Theresa suckled and sang and fondled and played. Scott felt the heat rising in his neck and his head. As her notes rose higher, pleading passionately for him to forsake his love, to live, to survive, he felt his excitement bubble. He was Radames. He would triumph. Amneris would make him king. She swallowed the fountain of lust.
She licked her lips with a smile. Scott again offered her a glass of wine and this time she took a sip. Scott poured another glass and tossed it back in a gulp. He tried to look at her, but felt deflated and ashamed.
“Mmmm,” Theresa said energetically, paying his reluctance no mind. “A good rehearsal, wouldn’t you say?”
“Um, yes. Theresa?”
“Thanks. I mean. Thanks.” A knock came at the door.
“Back on stage, please.” a voice spoke.
“C’mon, lover. Let’s show them how this scene should be done.”
“Yeah,” said Scott, weakly, “with courage and conviction.”