Excerpt from Loud is How I Love You
So instead of doing what I want to do, which is tear that jacket off of him and kiss him with my whole tongue, instead of running my sad and hungry hands through that jungle of wavy blond hair, instead of telling him I’m desperately afraid because I already know that I’m absolutely in love with him and there’s no going back for me, I pick up my Gretsch from the stand.
“Want to hear this new thing I wrote today?” I ask.
“Sure, why not,” he says.
“Take your jacket off, stay a while,” I try to tease him, but he doesn’t take his jacket off. He just stands there with his hands in his pockets, looking down at me, waiting.
I try to play him the guitar part but I fuck it up and it sounds all wrong.
“No, no, that’s not it,” I say, and my voice is shaking as I speak. My hands are shaking. “Hold on, let me get it back in my hands.”
“It’s okay,” he says, and then he takes his jacket off and sits down on the bed next to me. “Relax, Emmylou.”
I take a deep breath and start again, and now I’ve got it back and it sounds good. I keep playing and glance up and I can see he digs it. He’s nodding his head in time with the song, tapping his knees, and then he starts humming along once he picks up the basic melody. Then he pulls his acoustic guitar out of the case, tunes it up, and starts lightly strumming this chord pattern beneath the picking thing, and before I know it he’s writing a bridge and a chorus for it. And it’s perfect.
“I want to try something here,” I say, and it’s like I can breathe again. My head is buzzing with that electricity I get when I’m creating something like this, and it’s always ten thousand times better when I’m doing it with Travis. I pull my lyrics notebook out and open it to the last thing I was working on, and I’m super nervous to sing it for him. I take a deep breath and say, “Keep playing,” so he does while I pick up a pencil and start editing, scribbling, rearranging words on the paper. Then I start to tentatively sing over the chords Travis is playing.
Loud is how I love you,
Loud is how I know you’re there,
Loud so I don’t lose you,
Because I’d know the sound of you anywhere.
My eyes are closed when I’m singing, so I can’t see his reaction, but Travis stops playing when I get to the last line there. His mouth drops open and he freezes. Now we’re staring in silence at each other for a lifetime and then he looks down and I have no idea what’s going on, if he’s mad at me or what. Then he starts to play again and looks up at me.
“Do it again,” he says.
My heart pounds and I pick my guitar up and play the picking part and then Travis arranges the entire song. My string-picking opens the song and he doubles it, so there’s this super rich bell-choir sound, like a lonely church calling the hills home to pray. Then he moves into the chords and I sing it again and it’s all working. Really working. I know this is going to be the next single we record if we can scrape up the money to get into the studio. Travis is bobbing his head as he plays, totally absorbed in the song, and I think, Can’t we just do this? Can’t we just stay like this forever? This is all I want, right here. I know it’s so special, it’s too much to ask, but I’m going to ask the universe anyway.
Please, universe. Please, please let me hold on to him.
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Synopsis and Purchase Link
Twenty-one-year-old front girl Emmylou knows that getting her band noticed in the ‘90s indie rock scene will be no easy task. She definitely knows better than to break the number one rule of the band: Don't sleep with your bandmates! But after she ends up having the best sex of her life with her guitarist, Travis, she finds following that rule is a lot harder than it sounds.
When the band gets the gig of their dreams, making it big seems just within reach. But Emmy’s inability to keep her hands off Travis threatens everything they’ve worked for. Can Emmy find a way to break the rules and not blow the chance of a lifetime?