Passion and PoliticsbyTE999©
Hello and welcome to my readers. My thanks for your votes, PC's and E-mails on my previous submittals. Kudos and roses to my editor for her patience and helpful advice.
"That's our show for a sunny Friday. Thanks for tuning in. This is Susan Tyler reminding you that as long as I'm on the Right, you'll be alright."
Susan waited a moment before removing her headphones, listening to Mike Goodman's mellow baritone announcing "This WCLK Clear Lake City, the place for talk and news when you need it," over the closing bars of her theme song. Flicking the switches on her console and pushing the microphone to one side, she removed her earphones and fluffed her short black hair.
Swiveling her neck to get the kinks out, she looked at the window of the broadcast engineers' booth and saw Ben Stadler the station manager standing next to Mike. Catching Susan's eye, he gave her two thumbs up and a big grin.
Oh crap, Susan thought disgustedly, What's Ben doing here. This can't be good, that's for sure. The only time he smiles like that is when he's gonna tell me something that'll piss me off. She pushed her swivel chair away from the console and walked toward the control room door. Ben met her halfway, a smile still pasted on his ruddy features.
"Great show, Susan," he burbled. "The way you handled that caller complaining about the way the police handled that animal rights demonstration in the park was, inspiring, might I say brilliant."
Susan cocked an eyebrow. "Okay Ben," she said acidly. "We've worked together too long for you to try that phony complement act with me. What's the bad news. Spill it."
Ben's face fell into it's usual scowl. "Can't bullshit you can I Susan? I should know better. C'mon in my office, I have someone I want you to meet."
As they walked down the hall, Susan's mind was racing. Now what's the problem.It can't be the lawyer for that kook I punched out in the mall last week, legal department settled that one. Just because he didn't like my monologue on the City Council election, he thought he could scream in my face and get away with it.
"Take nothing from nobody," she muttered under her breath as Ben opened his office door and waved her in with an exaggerated flourish. Susan was surprised to see 'Colonel' Bob Allen the station's owner seated on Ben's sofa. As he stood to greet her, his stained cowboy hat fell from his lap and a shock of yellow white hair fell across his forehead.
"Susan," he boomed, "How's my favorite talk radio conservative? I'll bet you're giving those liberal callers fits. I've been out at the ranch a lot lately. Don't listen to the station much when I'm there. It's calving season, you know."
Dammit, I'll bet I'm being fired again! Oh well, won't be the first time.
"C'mon in and have a seat young lady," said 'Colonel' Bob, patting the cushion next to him. "We have a big surprise for you."
Susan sat down next to the 'Colonel', crossing her jean-clad legs demurely. I hope the old letch doesn't grab my knee again. I thought I'd never get rid of him at the last Broadcasting Awards dinner. I should just tell him I'm not interested in men, except it would probably give him a heart attack. Hey, at least he couldn't fire me... Ben began to speak, interrupting her thoughts.
"Susan, I bet you're wondering what this is all about," Ben said as he sat on the edge of his desk. "The 'Colonel' and I have decided to change your programs format a bit." Susan's back stiffened at Ben's words, her face an impassive mask.
"Now Susan," Ben continued, carefully avoiding her intense gaze. "We know you have the highest ratings for your time slot and you have an impressive amount of steady listeners, but some of the stockholders feel that we need to have more balance on the show. You know, equal time for the other side, a liberal point of view."
Susan was seething. Steady, girl, this isn't the time to blow up. Let's see what they have to say. "What did you two have in mind," she said in a tight voice, "I'm all ears." She winced; Ben was wearing that phony smile again.
"Susan, we're giving you a new show in your time slot, one with a liberal co-host, someone who will provide a counterpoint to your opinions and offer a different point of view on the issues of the day." Ben pressed a button on his desk, "Jane, would you send in our new co-host please."
Susan relaxed slightly. Bring on this liberal twit, she thought, her competitive spirit rising. I'll bet he's one of those wimpy girly-men always wanting to get along with everybody. I'll wrap him around my little finger and make him my on-air stooge. This is going to get interesting, I can feel it. She sat up straight on the couch, thrusting her ample breasts against her 'Support the Troops' t-shirt.
Her jaw dropped as a stunning blonde woman walked into the room, her tight blouse and short skirt emphasizing her firm breasts and shapely legs. Susan's steely grey eyes locked with the other woman's smoldering dark green as they looked appraisingly at each other.
"Let me introduce you ladies," the 'Colonel' boomed. "Susan Tyler, I'd like you to meet Becky Manning, your new co-host."
Susan arose from the couch, her eyes never leaving Becky's steady gaze.
"Hi Becky," she said warmly, extending her hand. "It's a pleasure to meet you." Becky reached out and clasped Susan's hand, her face widening into a smile. When their hands met and their skin touched, a pleasurable tingle passed between them. Susan suddenly felt very warm.
"Hi Susan," Becky replied, a flush rising in her cheeks. "It's really nice to meet you. They stood motionless, hands gripped tightly and staring into each other's eyes. Then they both sat together on the couch, knees barely touching, flustered and curious by their reactions to one another.
"Now ladies," said the 'Colonel' heartily, "I think it would be best if you would take some time to get to know each other. We'll have our first broadcast a week from Monday. Susan, we're bringing 'Smiling Jack' Preston up from 'Morning Drive Club' to fill in for you next week, maybe do a 'Best Of' show on Friday."
Ben arose from his seat on the desk and handed each of them a bulging manila envelope. "Here's a run-down on the final format of the new program and some CD's of your former shows. That way you can get used to each others on-air styles." Both women took the envelopes absently, still focused on each other. The 'Colonel' patted Bob on the back, "See Bob, you had nothing to worry about, they seem to be getting along."
Bob nodded, "Yeah, what a relief. They're both strong personalities and I thought there would be fireworks. I think everything's gonna work out."
Becky walked slowly to her car. Susan had invited her to the pub in the next block for a drink. She seems nice and I need to get to know her if we're going to be working together., Sliding behind the wheel of her Volvo station wagon, she sat there for a moment, coming to grips with the fact that she had reached the big time at last.
She'd paid her dues at four small stations, working her way up the ladder. She thought her career stalled until the phone call last Friday. Now here she was, 800 miles away from her old job, working with a top rated conservative radio host and a woman at that. She parked in front of 'Fessenden's Pub', locked the car door and headed inside.
Susan saw Becky walk in and waved to her from the booth. Her new co-host saw her and waved back. Sauntering over, she sat down and said, "What are you drinking there, Susan?"
"Guinness Stout," she replied, "care for a mug, I'm buying."
Becky wrinkled her nose, "Ew, no. But I'll have a glass of Merlot."
Susan grinned and signaled to a passing server. While they were waiting, Susan said, "You really surprised me today. I expected some wimpy little man I could make a fool of on the air, now…"
"Now you have me," Becky interrupted with a chuckle. "Really, I expected I'd be working with some blowhard of a man who was a sexist, narrow minded nitwit. But now…"
"You have me," Susan finished for her. They both began to laugh, beginning to enjoy each other's company. Three mugs of stout and four glasses of wine later, they were chatting like old friends.
Their careers had taken essentially similar paths. Both of them had earned degrees in Broadcast Journalism from different universities and worked at the campus radio stations. Both had started as fill-ins and then low-rated weekend talk show hosts. Both had worked at small radio stations, slowly moving into larger markets until Susan had cracked this major market. Now, Becky was about to do the same.
Naturally, the discussion turned to politics and the verbal jousting became intense. The subject matter ranged from nuclear proliferation to the Middle East conflicts, from abortion to gun control, censorship to freedom of speech. Both were skilled professionals who held strong beliefs and could argue their cases well. After almost three hours of debate, they laughingly called it a draw.
Becky and Susan sat sipping their drinks and exchanging grins. Each recognized a worthy opponent when they met one and felt a newfound respect for one another. In addition, they each felt something else as well.
Becky was on her fourth glass of wine and her tongue was becoming loose. Besides, she was feeling comfortable with Susan, even though they had just met. Hell, I'll just ask her. "So, Susan," she said with a grin, "Why isn't a good looking woman like you married by now?
Susan looked at Becky with narrowed eyes. She was getting nosey considering they had just met. However, the three mugs of stout she had drunk were making her mellow. "I guess I never met the right girl," she replied evenly.
Becky's eyes widened, "Oh my God, my gaydar was right. Rock-ribbed Conservative Susan Tyler is a lesbian!"
Susan raised an eyebrow, "Yep, and my gaydar tells me I'm not the only one."
Becky nodded, smiled and covered Susan's hand with her own. "We're going to make a great team, Susan. I'm really looking forward to working with you. Maybe we can go…"
Susan felt her cell phone vibrate in her pocket. Damn, this was just getting interesting, now who… She flipped it open and saw the caller ID. "I gotta meet some one, Becky. Sorry to drink and run." I mean it, too. What lousy timing… "Stop by my place tomorrow, we can run through some show prep. Say ten or so."
"I'll be there, Susan. It was good talking to you," Becky said, a wistful tone in her voice.
"You too," Susan replied, suddenly feeling sad, "Gotta run, bye."
As Susan walked out the door, she turned around and saw Becky looking after her. They both waved, and then Susan was gone.
Susan wheeled her Mustang into the Burger Barn parking lot, circling the building until she saw a red Mitsubishi Eclipse parked under a tree. She pulled next to it and opened her window. The other cars window opened revealing the beautiful face of Carmen Sanchez, her dark hair and black eyes contrasting perfectly with her light brown skin.
"Thanks for coming, Susan," Carmen said excitedly. "I hope I didn't interrupt anything."
Only getting to know my co-host… "No, not really Carmen, what's up?"
"You know that tip you gave me last week about those calls you'd been getting at the station about the new owners of the chemical plant? Well, I did some digging and I think I'm on to something, something really big."
Carmen was WKLC Channel 12's investigative reporter and when she was on a case, she was tenacious. Her investigative exposé's always netted the station high ratings, so they gave her free rein to explore any story she found interesting.
She and Susan had been lovers at one time, but the pressures of their jobs drove them apart. Now they were good friends, but deep down a spark still glowed. Becky could tell Carmen was on to something, she could see it in her demeanor, a hunting dog straining at the leash.
"You're rattling someone's cage, that's for sure," Becky laughed. "My tires were slashed again last Monday and they left another note saying back off. What's going on, Carmen?"
"I don't think they're on the level at that plant, Susan," Carmen replied. "I don't think they're making fertilizer either. Oh, if it's any consolation, my apartment was searched while I was at work. It just makes me want to find out more. I'm going undercover to see what I can learn. They just started hiring again, you know."
"Watch out Carmen," Susan cautioned. "Don't get in over your head."
"You know me, I'll be careful," Carmen replied, starting her engine. "I'm late for dinner at grandmas, I'll call you later. I just wanted to see you for a bit, bye."
Susan watched Carmen drive away. "Stay safe, sweetie," she muttered.
Promptly at ten-o-clock, Susan's doorbell chimed. Becky stood on the doorstep, a big smile on her face. "Hi Susan," she said brightly, "Ready to do some show prep?" She was dressed in cut off jean shorts and a crop top t-shirt, her shapely legs and firm breasts on full display. Susan felt her mouth go dry. "Right on time," she murmured, stepping aside to let her in.
Becky sat at Susan's kitchen table and watched as she moved about setting out coffee and rolls. She looked so cute in her hip hugger cargo shorts and tube top, full breasts jiggling as she worked, Becky couldn't take her eyes off her. She had dressed to get Susan's attention and it seemed Susan had dressed in the same way. Becky preferred to keep romance and work separate, but Susan was becoming impossible to ignore.
Susan loaded the CD recordings of their shows in her sound system and they began to listen to each other on the air, giggling at their vehemence. "That woman sounded like she was going to cry. I can be such a bitch sometimes."
Tears of laughter ran down Becky's cheeks. "That last guy I was talking to was so mad, I thought he was going to smash his radio. Those holier-than-thou types always bring out the devil in me." Susan began riffling through the show prep briefing sheets that the Associate Producer had prepared for them.
"Well, goodbye to 'Right Wing Roundup' and hello to 'Counterpoint', that's our new show, Becky," Susan said, sliding her chair closer to her co-host.
"And goodbye to 'Left Wing Wisdom' too," Becky replied as their bare legs touched under the table. "But a new show rises from the ashes like the Phoenix."
Susan rubbed her leg slowly against Becky's feeling her push back against her.
Gazing into each other's eyes, Becky reached up and brushed Susan's hair from her forehead. Susan took Becky's hand in hers and stroked her cheek. Becky leaned forward, lips parted, when the doorbell chimed.
"I… I better get that," Susan stammered, releasing Becky's hand and heading for the door.
Carmen stood in the doorway, eyes shining. "Hi Susan," she said happily, "I was just in the neighborhood and I thought…"
"C'mon in Carmen," Susan said brusquely, "I want you to meet someone."
Becky had walked out from the kitchen, a frown crossing her face when she saw Carmen. "Carmen," Susan said, "I'd like you to meet Becky Manning, my new co-host." The women looked at each other with a mix of curiosity and suspicion as Susan stood between them.
"Pleased to meet you Carmen," Becky said smiling, not pleased at all. "I've gotta run, Susan, things to do, you know. Same time tomorrow for show prep, okay?"
"Uh, yeah, same time tomorrow," Susan said, feeling sad that Becky was leaving so soon. She watched as Becky hurried out the door, round ass wiggling in her tight shorts.
"She's pretty," Carmen said wistfully, knowing she had interrupted something.
"Yeah, pretty," Becky said in an irritated tone. "What's up, Carmen?"
"I found out something else about that chemical company…" Carmen began.
"Who was that Carmen bitch?" Becky muttered to herself as she weaved through the traffic. Susan was so close, her lips so soft…Get a grip, woman. You're in the major leagues now. Don't start getting mushy. This is your big break. Don't screw it up by making a move on your co-host. But she slid over to me first…no, no, don't do it. There's too much at stake. Just be cool, be cool.
Monday morning dawned and Susan met Becky in the lobby of WCLK's broadcast center. "Hi partner," she said excitedly as she hugged Becky, "Ready to make radio history?"
"Sure am, partner," Becky responded enthusiastically, returning Susan's hug. "Let's go tear 'em up."
When they exited the studios elevator, a small crowd of station employees were there to greet them, clapping and smiling. "Hi guys," Susan said, "my partner here and I are ready to do our first show." Becky grinned and gave Susan a peck on the cheek, making her blush. Settling in at their consoles, headphones on and mic's set, they waited for the producers signal…
Three hours later, Susan and Becky removed their headphones and high fived each other. It had been a terrific first program and they knew it. All their hard work the past week had paid off, blending their styles, bouncing subjects off each other, sharpening their verbal ripostes. It seemed that most of the people in Clear Lake City wanted to talk to, and argue or agree with them. The call screeners had their hands full as the phone banks stayed lit for the entire show.
Susan could see Colonel Bob and Ben grinning at them through the control room window. She cocked a thumb at them for Becky's benefit, so she turned in her chair and waved. Then they stood up and walked arm in arm into the conference room for a first show party.
Two hours later, the party had wound down and most of the celebrants had left. A small group still gathered around 'Colonel" Bob as he began another boring tale of ranch life. He was the station owner, so they listened with feigned interest.
When he stopped to take drink, Susan said, "It's been a lovely party everyone, but Becky and I have to leave. We'll see you all tomorrow."
"Yes, it was a great party," Becky said, "I know I'm going to enjoy working with all of you. See you tomorrow." They walked in the elevator, the doors closing behind them.
As the elevator descended, Susan suddenly hit the stop button, holding it between floors. "Susan," Becky began, "What are you…" She shivered as Susan took her hands in hers and looked into her eyes.
"I, I can't hold back any longer," Susan said softly, her voice thick with emotion. "I tried, I really did. I want you so bad, Becky. I wanted you from the first time we met, when we talked in the pub. I know it's unprofessional to become involved with your co- workers, but I…"
Becky took Susan in her arms, their bodies fitting together as two halves of a whole. "Susan I want you too, so very much. I felt it the first time we met. I knew there was something between us, I knew it." Their lips met in a passionate kiss. Tears flowed from their eyes as their tongues danced in each other's mouths, their emotions overwhelming them.
Kissing and caressing, they began fumbling with each other's clothes. "Wait," Susan murmured, "Not here. I know a place." Releasing the stop switch, she pressed the second floor button. They stumbled out of the elevator into an empty hallway, the faint hum of electrical equipment echoing in their ears. Moving down the corridor, Susan stopped in front of a red-framed door marked 'No Admittance', pulled a ring of keys from her pocket and unlocked it. She led Becky inside, switched on the lights and locked the door again.
When she turned back to follow Becky she was directly in front of her, smiling shyly. "Hey, you," she said softly, holding out her arms. Susan sighed and moved into her embrace, hugging Becky tightly and nuzzling her soft blonde hair. Susan began a slow grind against Becky, loving the feel of her firm belly and thighs against her own. Becky sucked lightly on Susan's tongue, reaching down to cup her full ass cheeks in her hands, drawing them together more tightly. Soon they were sighing and moaning, lost in the pleasures of their mutual desire.