The Rayna Jaymes / Juliette Barnes tour (or the Juliette Barnes / Rayna Jaymes tour, depending on who you ask) is HAPPENING! And the ladies only bitch each other out for a little while to try and establish the pecking order (at this point it's a draw). The tour kicks off in three days, because it's the most hastily slapped together tour in all of musical history!
Meanwhile, Juliette has taken the extreme yet effective step of eloping with Sean just to get him to bang her. When his parents learn of their nuptials they are most decidedly not pleased, and his Tiger Mom insists that they have a church wedding to save face before Juliette heads out on tour. The one day of wedding planning gives Monster-in-Law a chance to bitch out Juliette constantly. With Sean's football schedule and Juliette's tour, the newlyweds will basically never be able to see each other, which is probably all for the best. Sean wants to go see Jolene in rehab and tell her the news, but Juliette insists on taking that one solo. It turns out that Jolene has finally combed her hair, and in the process gained some wisdom -- she says that no amount of hasty marriage will quiet Juliette's demons, and asks if she's really happy. Juliette freaks out, and then winds up being a no-show at her own wedding, which would be a more effective tactic if she weren't already married.
Rayna can't wait to get out of Nashville, and wants to take her girls out on tour with her so Teddy can't embezzle money from their piggy banks while she's away. Teddy is not keen on that idea and neither is Lamar, who threatens to tell Maddie who her real daddy is. It turns out that Teddy already knows about Maddie's paternity, and when he learns of Lamar's threat he goes apeshit. This makes Rayna like him a little bit more. She agrees not to take the girls with her full-time, and both she and Teddy agree that her tour is the perfect cover (both to the public and at home) for their failing-for-reasons-besides-embezzlement marriage.
Elsewhere, Deacon doesn't seem to be enjoying his newfound rock star status all that much, despite getting to bang an old friend / maybe flame who is now a music journalist. They have the opposite of post-coital bliss when she brings up their past, and how she let something go 14 years ago and regretted it, and also maybe a car accident was involved? We can at least appreciate the character development involved in Deacon having inscrutable conversations with someone other than Rayna. Deacon proves that he is the enemy of happiness and satisfaction when he can't even enjoy his own picture on the cover of a magazine. He also probably secretly wants to go on tour with Rayna and Juliette, where the hairstylists have bigger fish to fry.
Back at the Squirrel Village, Scarlett and Gunnar are fighting a whole bunch, mostly because he's being a dick, per usual. Avery shows up at Scarlett's place to get his stuff since he's moving out, and then tricks her into a hug. There are FEELINGS, and then SEX. But Scarlett goes all rabid woodchuck on him when she learns that he's totally dumped his good friends and former bandmates upon hotshot producer Domino's insistence. While Avery slinks back to the ATL wondering whether selling his soul to Domino is better or worse than having sold it to Marilyn, Scarlett agrees to fill in last-minute for a gig with Avery's bandmates. She knows every song, after all. Of course they love her and the audience loves her and her ability to bounce around cross-eyed on stage invokes envy from even the angels, and they ask her to be a permanent member of the band. But Scarlett turns them down because the thrill of being a frontwoman pales in relation to her tedious and needlessly dramatic relationship with Gunnar.
Previously: After their hot duet at the Ryman, Marshall Evans proposed a Rayna Jaymes / Juliette Barnes co-headlining tour, and Rayna didn't say no. Scarlett and Gunnar kissed and, in related news, Hailey dumped Gunnar. Peggy overdosed on sleeping pills (but sadly did not die), and Teddy was forced to tell Rayna that they didn't have an affair, they just embezzled some money together. A big rock band named The Revel Kings asked Deacon to play guitar for them, and Juliette proposed to Sean so a) he'd finally sleep with her; b) she could stick it to his nasty mom.
We enter with Rayna in the studio, recording her part on "Wrong Song." In happy news, Connie Britton has really improved vocally over the break! Good for her, and us, really. Liam has noticed as well, and is digging it. Bucky and Glen are also in the sound booth rocking out, and Liam happily informs Rayna that she nailed the track. Juliette doesn't have a chance to do the same thing because she still hasn't shown up yet. Her absence gives Liam an opportunity to say that the whole tour is a very bad idea. Glen apologizes and says this is really unlike Juliette, and everyone is all, "HAHALOL."
So where is Juliette, you may wonder? She's banging Sean in the back of a limo. He can't believe they just "did that," and she enthusiastically says it was worth the wait. But Sean is talking about their rash nuptials. All Juliette can say to that is, "That was nice." That's only one small step down from calling the whole experience "neat." He wonders when they should tell people. She asks, "Like our managers?" but he means their parents. A match fated by the heavens, these two! Juliette wants to have sex with Sean again to avoid talking about this any more, but she's interrupted by a phone call reminder her she was supposed to be in the studio with Rayna. What a wedding night! But the studio version of "Wrong Song" promises to be a much bigger hit than even the live version and if Juliette is going to eschew sex for anything, it's money.
Cut to Scarlett and Gunnar, who are at the publishing house late at night trying to work out a song. They've been going for four hours without much success, which gives Gunnar a bonus chance to be a prick. He doesn't like the lyrics that Scarlett is proposing, and decides to go home. She reminds them that they need three new songs and have absolutely zip, but he tells her that it's pretty hard to write a song without any decent lyrics. Scarlett wonders why Gunnar is being such a walloping ass, and he just shakes his head in response, bile forming in his soul patch. Then SHE decides to leave, which makes him mad for no good reason. She mentions that she has to meet Avery in the morning, but it's not because they're back together -- he's moving out and giving her the keys to their place. Scarlett runs into Hailey on her way out the door, just to give Gunnar something extra to pout about.