"I miss you." John said.
"I miss you too." Claudia sighed while she was rummaging through the wine cellar.
"Something's wrong, I can hear it."
"I don't know, it's nothing I guess." Claudia mumbled, grabbing a bottle of Camarro and setting it in the basket she was taking up.
"Doesn't sound like 'nothing'. Do you need me to come see you?" John asked.
"I always need you."
Upstairs in the office, Randy sat at his desk with Ted and a few of the boys huddled around it. They were all staring at what looked like an answering machine.
" You make it so hard for me not to just come over there and take you with me."
" You're a brave man, John. Brave or insane, I haven't decided yet." Claudia's voice filled the room. Ted threw his head back in disappointment, Randy's face was stoic, but his knuckles were white while he gripped his glass of scotch.
"Alright, that's enough. You don't need to hear anymore." Ted went to turn the speaker off but Randy stopped him. "Fine, do what you want, but I'm not gonna help you feel sorry for yourself." Randy glared at Ted as he walked out the door. The two boys left just looked at Randy, waiting.
"Claudia's to be dealt with…tonight." Randy was still eerily calm as he spoke the words.
"I love you." John said.
"See ya soon." Claudia murmured.
"…Leave." He mouthed. It took all of three seconds for them to clear out.
Randy snatched the machine from the wall and threw it against the door. He would get to John eventually, but Claudia, she was going to pay prices in no time.
"Oh Claudia, what'd you get your ass into?" Gia shook her head. She thumped her head against the office door and walked off.
"Hey knucklehead, why aren't you upstairs locked away in your powder room?" Adam asked as he made his way into the cellar.
"I don't know about tonight, maybe we should just stay home." Claudia said.
"What, I thought you were looking forward to tonight?" Adam asked.
"I was, now I just feel like we're all better left calling it off."
"There something you wanna talk about?"
" It's just this, I don't know. This nagging in my gut says we're headed for trouble." Claudia had only looked like this a few times in her life, and something was always most definitely wrong.
" Hey, say the word and I'll tell Randy the whole thing's off." Adam assured.
"No, no. He spent so much time putting it all together, I don't wanna disappoint him. Maybe it's nothing." Claudia wasn't sure who she was trying to convince more, Adam or herself.
"You sure?" Adam took her by the shoulders and studied her eyes.
"Yeah." She said quietly with a small nod.
"Alright." Adam kissed her forehead.
" If you're trying to outdo me, you got a long way to go baby sis." Adam and Claudia turned and saw Gia in the doorway.
"Gia what are you talking about?" Claudia asked.
"Adam, I need a minute with my sister. Preferably somewhere not so dank."
"Well I'm not finished in here." Claudia looked at her sister. "I'll see you in a little bit, ok?" Claudia squeezed Adam's shoulder before he walked out the cellar.
"What's going on?" Claudia asked.
"You know we tell each other, like everything right?"
"Is there anything you wanna tell me now? Something you need to get yourself out of?" Gia asked.
"What're you going on about, Gia?"
" Oh I think you know…" She squinted her eyes at Claudia.
"No I really don't." Claudia said.
"That's what I was afraid of." Gia rolled her eyes then wrapped her hands around her sister. "I love you, sis. Remember that."
"Gia what's the matter with you?" Claudia began to worry as she held on to her sister.
"Nothing. It's just time for me to step up and be a big sister, that's all." Gia kissed her cheek before she pulled away. "I'll see ya tonight."