Hey people. After writing ď The GodfatherĒ, a few people asked me, ď O.K. That was good. Now, what happens to Claudia?Ē So, I pondered it for a while, and accumulated a bit of e-mail asking the same question. So, I thought, and thought, and listened to ďThe Phantom Of The OperaĒ soundtrack about six times. I asked my closest friends what they thought. ď Make her a bitchĒ popped up more than once, ď Give her a sex change!Ē was a big one too, along with ďMake her a lezi!Ē Unfortunately Pauline, she has a boyfriend.  And another that I feel deserves mention was ďHave her seduce Ray!Ē
I had to turn elsewhere for help. I never found it, sorry.
 Standard Disclaimer. PG I guess, nothing that you wouldnít see happening at your typical police station, Consulate, or high school.
 Just to clear things up for all the Non- North American readers: I am using the new Ray in all my fan fics. Some people mailed me, and were thoroughly confused.( I find Callum better, just for the record)Oh yes, Janet. Youíll see her in this ep. If you want her whole story, check out the synopsis on ď Bounty HunterĒ in the episode guide.
 Thank-you kindlyís go out to: Nicki,(Ď..touch it, touch my stump!í) Kit, and Pauline for their suggestions. They may have been crappy, but they made for some pretty cool walk-home convoís.

The Godfather II  :The Perfect Drug             ô Ashley Sametz 1997
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

( Scene begins with Franny and Fraser having a conversation with each other, much to Frannyís delight. This takes place about two months after ĎThe Incidentí took place.)

Franny- So, youíve enrolled her in school?
Fraser- Yes. Sheís probably going to be here for about three more months, so I figured it was for the best. Ray thought it was too. Actually, Ray was the one who made the arrangements.
Franny- Yeah, theyíre pretty close now. I just hope not too much of Ray rubs off on Claud.
Fraser- Come again?

( Francesca makes a ď CímereĒ gesture to Fraser. He follows her, to the lunchroom, and she pushes open the door. Ray and Claudia are leaning back in their chairs, eating oranges. They have the stickers on their foreheads, and peels in place of their teeth. They grin.)

Fraser- Oh. I see.

( Opening theme)
 

****************

( Scene begins with Claudia and a fairly attractive guy ( about 16) on her arm entering the station. Ray approaches the two, folder in hand, he coughs, and shows some discomfort, rubbing the right side, beneath the collar bone)

Ray-(looking through the folder, not looking up)Claudia, I need you to update (looks up)- woah! Whoís your friend here?!
Claudia- (smiles) Ray, this is Lucas McCowan. ( laces her fingers through his)
Ray- (looks warily at Lucas) He your beau?
Claudia- I guess you could say that.
Ray- (nods his head ) Ahh.
Dewey- (yells from the other side of the room) Claudia! I need you to fix my monitor!
Lucas- (sighs) Duty calls. See you tomorrow. ( kisses Claudia on the cheek, and waves to Ray) Nice meeting you Ray. ( leaves)
Ray- (drops his voice as he and Claud head to Deweyís desk) Does Fraser know?
Claudia- About Luke?
Ray- Yeah.
Claudia- What do you think?
Ray- *I* think Iíd better go tell him. (Turns to walk away)
Claudia- Ray! Nonononon! Please!(Drops to her knees, and hugs Ray around his legs)
Ray- Claudia, really.
Claudia- Please Ray, just this one tiny thing...?
Ray- TINY!?
Claudia- O.K, O.K, substantially *LARGE* thing. Ray, please?
Ray- Fine, fine.

( Claudia stands up)

Claudia- Oh, thankyou!
Ray- Just remember, now Iíve got killer blackmail.
Claudia- Fine. Then if you tell, Iíll tell Francesca you used her pantyhose.
Ray- Hey! Thatís not fair!
Claudia- Thatís blackmail! (Begins to walk away)
Ray- (grabs Claudiaís arm) Umm, Claud, be careful, all right?
Claudia- Why? Whatís wrong with him?
Ray- Iíve got this feeling. Instinct I think.
Claudia- Ray, when was the last time your instinct was right?
Ray- (pauses) Let me get back to you on that.

( Claudia goes up to Dewey who is whacking the computer monitor)

Dewey- It wonít work.
Claudia- I gathered that. ( pokes around the back of the monitor. It lights up)
Dewey- Howíd you do that?
Claudia- I plugged it in. Have you see Ben?
Dewey- Heís down talking to that singing coroner guy.
Claudia- Dr. Mort?
Dewey- Yeah, thatís the guy. How can you stand him?
Claudia- I donít know. Bye.
Dewey- See you.
 

( Scene changes to Claudia going down the steps to find her God-Daddy. She pushes open the double doors, and sees Mort putting polish on a deceasedís nails( with The Judas Kiss on the table beside him)and humming ďDebussyís Claire de LuneĒ. Meanwhile, Fraser is going through a metal filing cabinet filled with manila envelopes.)

Claudia- Hey doc, Ben.
Dr.Mort- Aah! Claudia! How are you?
Claudia- Just fine thanks. Howís the book?
Dr. Mort- I had no idea that mounties could be so...so....evil! Fraud, possible murder, and even..(softly so Ben wonít hear)...sex scandals!
Claudia- I assure you, Ben has never been involved in any of that. Never. Uh, Ben? When do you think youíll be leaving?

( Mort continues humming his tune)

Fraser- As soon as I find what Iím looking for.
Claudia- And that would be...?
Fraser- This ( pulls out an envelope, opens it up, and dumps it out on the exam table). For you.
Claudia- (sifting through the contents. The envelope contains: four identical watches, two small Ziploc bags with a bullet in each) Whatís this? I..I mean, the watches, I know, but, whatís with the bullets?
Fraser- (smiling politely in the way we all love) This one ( holds up one bag) is the one that shot you, and this one ( holds up other one) is the one that killed Keith. I thought you might want it. (Holds out the bag)
Claudia- (takes it) Thanks Ben.

( Ray comes thumping down the stairs)

Ray- (pushes through the door) Hey. Whatís up?
Fraser- Not much. Weíll be going soon.
Ray- (takes the baggies from Claudiaís hand) Whatís this?
Claudia- This is the bullet that shot me, (points to bag) and this is the one that killed Keith.  Ben said I could have Ďem.
Ray- Know what? I bet you could put Ďem on a chain, and wear them.
Claudia- Good idea.
Ray- Or you could give one to-(Claudia kicks his shin, and he continues in an in-pain voice) Never mind.
Fraser- Well, shall we?
Claudia- Sure. (Picks up envelope, grabs bags out of Rays hand and shoots him the evil eye.) Bye Doctor. Ray.
Dr.Mort- Good night!

(Fraser and Claudia leave)

******************

( Scene takes place the next day at Claudiaís school. Theyíre in drama class, so theyíre in the green room behind the stage (Itís Catholic, so theyíre in uniform). The final bell is about to ring and the teacher ( who is reasonably good-looking) is finishing up with the class)

Teacher- O.K, now...Nick, how would you end the ď Is it a lark? Is it a nightingaleĒ scene?
Nick- Iíd have Romeo jump off a wall, onto a horse, and ride into the forest. With Juliet swooning.

( bell rings)

Teacher- Class dismissed. Read that last scene once more please! Claudia, can I see you for a moment?

(Claudia steps up to the table the teacher is standing behind)

Teacher- I was wondering, if perhaps your parents could come in for an interview? Youíve been enrolled fairly late into the year, and as your homeroom teacher also, I was wondering if I could have a word with them.
Claudia- Thatís gonna be kind of hard. Umm, I could have my God-father come in to see you. Or, Detective Vecchio.
Teacher- Detective?
Claudia- Yeah. ( scene goes to the door where Lucas is waiting. He points to his watch. Scene goes back to Claudia) Umm, What time can you see them?
Teacher- This evening around six would be good but-
Claudia- Great. Iíll tell Ben. Bye Miss!

( leaves with Lucas)

Teacher- Claudia! Kids these days....

****************

( Scene begins that evening. Ray and Fraser have both decided to go to the meeting. Theyíre waiting inside the class. Ray is sitting in a studentís desk, Fraser is sitting on the top of a small bookshelf, looking through a  book. The teacher comes in. Ray raises his eyebrows)

 Teacher- Oh, youíre here. Great. ( sees Fraser) Youíre...?
Fraser- Constable Benton Fraser, Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Teacher- And youíre in Chicago?
Fraser- Yes. I first came here on the trail of my fatherís killers, and-
Ray- ...For reasons not needing exploring at this juncture, heís remained, attached-
Fraser-...As liaison with the Canadian Consulate.
Teacher- (looking fazed) Oh...kay...

(Fraser gets off the bookshelf, and sits beside Ray. Thereís a fluff in Fraserís hair, and Ray picks it out. Fraser looks at Ray, and the two look, kinda, well, you know, like lovers)

Teacher- Oh, Oh my. Is this why You moved? Because you lived in a small town? I know a gay couple, and they came from a community-
Ray- Oh! God Lady, God no, weíre not, I mean, weíre partners! Oh, but not in that sense! You know, as police, with the hand-cuffs, crap! Bad example! What Iím trying to say is that weíre friends! Weíre not gay, not that I have anything against-
Fraser- I think she understands Ray.
Teacher- No, not really, but Iíll continue anyway. Your daughter-
Fraser- God-daughter.
Teacher- Yes, well she has been enrolled late into the year, and weíre afraid that she may not be able to keep up with here peers. Iím not sure the schooling here is the same as it is in...?
Fraser- Inuvik.
Teacher- Yes, Inuvik (mispronounces it)
Ray- Oh, no, sheíll keep up, donít worry.
Teacher- You must be detective Vecchio. Claudiaís said a lot about you. You donít really look alike.
Ray- Why should we?
Teacher- I thought you were brother and sister?
Ray- No, Iím just Ray.
Teacher- Pardon me?
Fraser- (sighs, and runs a finger around his Stetson which is sitting on a desk in front of him) Claudiaís parents were killed a while ago, along with all close family members. Sheís been sent to live with me until the arrangements for a foster home have been made.
Teacher- Oh...my...And why are you here detective?( puts on a seducing look) Not that I mind you here, that is.
Ray- (smiles) I just tag along with Ben here, you know, big city, little Canadian.
Teacher- Oh.

( Ray ís cell rings)

Ray- Excuse me. (Flips it open) Vecchio. Why? Again? Yeah, weíll be right there.           ( presses button) Benny, we gotta go. Frannyís been messing with the guys in the cage again. (Flips it shut)
Fraser- Oh dear. (To teacher) Perhaps another time(picks up Stetson, and places it on his head).
Teacher- Yes, perhaps.
Ray- Hereís my cell number, in case you want to discuss something about Claudia. Perhaps, over coffee?
Teacher- (smiles) Iíd like that detective.
Ray- Well, (looks at nameplate) Ms. Gatonsby, good-bye.
Teacher- Call me Sheila

(Ray smiles, and exits. Mouths the word ď SheilaĒ, and nods his head)
 

*****************

(Scene begins later that evening, and Claudiaís at home, making dinner. Rayís over, and he and Ben are sitting at the table)

Ray- Youíve got quite the teacher there Claud.
Claudia- Yeah. Iíve got her for drama too. Sheís pretty good. (Tastes this stuff in a pot)
Ray- (leans back in his chair and smiles) Yeah....
Claudia- (looks at Ray alarmed) Ray, are you, did she...?
Ray- Saturday.
Claudia- Youíre going out with my teacher?!
Fraser- Youíre going out with her teacher?
Ray- Maybe we can double date!
Claudia- Ray!
Fraser-Pardon?
Claudia- You said you wouldnít tell!
Fraser- Tell what?!
Ray- Claudís gotta boyfriend!
Fraser- WHAT?! And you never told me!?
Claudia- I was gonna tell you when you asked!
Fraser- But Iíd never ask that question!
Ray- Bingo.
Fraser- And yet you tell Ray?!
Claudia- I didnít exactly tell him....we just sort of ran into each other.
Fraser- I want to meet this boy.
Claudia- ( In a long whine) Be-nnn!
Fraser- Donít ďBenĒ me Claudia. Iím going to meet him, have a light conversation, then Iíll decide whether you can ďgo outĒ with him.
Ray- To late.
Claudia- Ray! Shut-up!
Ray- Fine (makes a motion of zipping his lips).
Claudia- *Grow*-up!
Fraser- Wait. Youíve already gone out with this boy?
Ray-  Known him for three weeks. Gone out  three times. She moves fast.
Claudia- (smacks Ray with a wooden spoon on the back) Can it!
Fraser- Three weeks?! Where the hell did you meet him?!
Claudia- The hospital. Ray actually introduced me. His mother was the nurse he was trying to seduce.
Fraser- WHAT?! Ray! Look at what youíre teaching her!
Ray- Yeah, youíve gotta have connections.
Fraser- Thatís not what I meant. Claudia, Iím meeting him tomorrow night, and thatís that. Understand?
Claudia- Understood. Just do me a favour, and donít wear the serge. Or the Sam Browne. Or your Stetson. Or any part of the R.C.M.P. dress uniform. Please? For me?
Fraser- Whatís wrong with my uniform?
Claudia- Nothing, really. Red suits you. Itís just that Iíve had a hard enough time fitting in around here, and, well, living with a Christmas tree ornament as people call you-
Ray- Like me.
Claudia-...just sorta scares people off.
Fraser- (sighs) I give up. Fine, weíve got a deal. No tunic, and I get to meet.....?
Ray- Lucas McCowan. Iím telliní ya, it has a bad-guy sound to it. (Lowers his voice) Tonight in the news, Lucas McCowan has been arrested for....stuff. Real bad stuff.
Claudia- Youíre not helping. And I thought you had (makes the zippering thing across her mouth).
Ray- I changed my mind. Iím speaking.
Claudia- I see.
Ray- Oh..My..God. Itís a Canadian thing isnít it? Kinda like that Hmm thing?
Fraser- Hmm?
Ray- (lowers his voice again) Also in the news, the Canadian Plague. Have you got it? Hmm? Do you? Hmm? (Talking into his glass like itís a microphone)
Claudia-  (grabs the glass) Donít play at the table.

(Ray gives her a Look)

*****************

(Scene begins with Lucas and Claudia standing in the hall of Fraserís floor. Itís Friday at around 7:00 p.m. Heís tastefully dressed in a pair of jeans, a beige pull-over sweater, and tan workboots)

Lucas- So, youíre living with your God-father?
Claudia- Yeah. Oh, Luke, take your earring out. Beníll flip.
Lucas- Oh, right. (Taking it out) So what do I call this guy? Ben?
Claudia- If you want. You could call him Fraser too. Or if you really wanna impress him, call him constable.
Lucas- Umm, heís a cop?
Claudia-  No, heís a mountie.
Lucas- In Chicago?
Claudia- Long story. Donít ask or youíll be sorry. Ready to meet him?
Lucas- I guess.
Claudia- (smiles) O.K. Here it goes. (Pushes open the door) Ben? Weíre here!
Lucas- (softly to Claudia) He doesnít lock his door?
Claudia- They donít have locks in Tuktoyaktuk.

(Ben appears wearing his jeans and flannel shirt. Claudia throws him a grateful smile. He returns it.)

Claudia- Lucas, this is my God-father, Constable Benton Fraser.
Lucas- (sticks out his hand) Lucas McCowan. Nice to meet you.

(Ray walks out of the bathroom)

Ray- Hey there Luke.
Lucas- Detective Vecchio? You live here too?
Ray- Oh, Lord no. Iím just in the habit of showing up here a lot. Hey, Luke, can I have a word with you for a sec?
Lucas- Yeah, I guess.

(They walk into the kitchen)

Ray- Look Luke, I donít want to scare you off, Claud seems awfully fond of you, but I donít really trust you. Donít even *try* to pull anything on her. I get wind of you doing anything funny, thatíll be the end of this relationship, got it?

(Luke nods)

Ray- Another thing, you hurt her, I kill you. And I mean it. (Smiles and slaps his shoulder.) Have a nice day. (Leaves)

(Lucas swallows, and goes back into Fraserís living room. Claudia smiles at him. He tries to return the favour. He sits down on a loveseat, and Fraser sits down on a chair)

Fraser- Claudia, would you mind taking Diefenbaker out?
Claudia- Ben- oh, never mind. Dief, come on.

(Dief trots up, but stops and sniffs Lucas. He wonít stop.)

Lucas- Umm, Constable, can you call your dog off?
Fraser- Actually, heís a wolf, and heís deaf.
Lucas- Claudia? Can you...?
Claudia- (goes up to Dief, waves a hand in front of his face. Slowly says) Walk...letís go.

(Dief sniffs Lucasís shoe once more, then runs out the door.)

Claudia- See you! ( Grabs her coat and runs after him)

(Lucas and Ben look at each other. Thereís an uncomfortable silence)

Ben- So, tell me about yourself.
Lucas- Pardon?
Ben- Never mind. So, where did you meet Claudia?
Lucas- The hospital...
Ben- Ahh, yes....the hospital...So...do you like hockey?
Lucas- Sure. Hawks rule.
Ben-  Thereís a game on.
Lucas- Go for it.
Ben- O.K. then.

( gets up and turns it on. Changes the channel to the game. Hawks vs.Detriot )

Lucas- Whereís the sound?
Ben - Itís not there. There is no sound.
Lucas- Oh.

*****************

(scene takes place the next day (Saturday) about noon. Fraser and Claud have just come through the door. Fraserís in jeans and a nice, knit blue sweater (you canít see their tops for their coats), but has his Stetson on. Claudiaís wearing bootlegs, and a velour shirt)

Claudia- So, what did you think of Lucas?
Fraser- He seems like a nice young man. Dief seems to like him.
Claudia- I know. Heís got a dog of his own, do you think-
( a familiar looking young boy barrels into Benton. He giggles, Benton seems surprised. Two girls follow. Fraser looks down into the kidís face. The little boy grins)
Fraser- Janet....(walks away, leaving Claudia avec the kids)
Claudia- (the kids look at her, and then begin going through her bag) Umm Ben?

(Dewey walks by.)

Claudia- Thomas E., whose kids?
Dewey- (raises brows) Sheís baa-ck!
Claudia- Who?
Dewey- The Bounty Hunter. (Walks away, whistling) Have fun!
Claudia- Bounty hunter? Dewey! Wait! What are their names?
Annie- Annie
Suzanne- Suzanne

(Claudia looks at the little boy expectantly)

Robbie- Oh, Robbie

(Franny appears)

Franny- Oh, Claudia, thanks. I needed a break. Youíll have fun, Iím sure. Iím taking lunch. Oh, and the Dumsha files need updating. Drug dealingís increasing lately. Bye! (leaves)
Claudia- Francesca! How can I do the files with the kids here? FRANNY!

(The kids look at her, she looks at them)

(Ray walks by (dans black jeans, and a T-shirt with the Champion logo on it, which goes nicely with his tattoo). He tosses her a set of keys.)

Ray- Here. Keys to the holding cell. You might need Ďem. (Walks on)
Claudia- Ray! (To kids) Cover your ears.( they do) Ray, what the hell is going on here?! Whose kids?!
Ray- Janetís.
Claudia- Who the hellís Janet?!
Suzanne- (uncovering her ears) Our mom.
Claudia- No kidding.
Ray- Oh (hands her files). Update Ďem. Druggies are really at it.
Claudia- How do you expect me to update all this and take care of them?
Ray- Oh, theyíre good kids. (Hands her his cuffs too) You might need these too. Iíd give you my holster, but itís holding me up. I feel like hell.
Claudia- You look like it too.
Ray- (grins sarcastically) Yeah, thanks. Iím gone to lunch. Then maybe home. Want something?
Claudia- Aspirin. Iím already getting a headache, and the kids( realises theyíre gone) are gone (sighs). Iíd better be getting time and a half for this.
Ray- You donít get paid as it is.
Claudia- Then I expect at least time. Better go, see ya. (Claudia  goes off in search of the kids. She looks around, and realises that half the station is gone. Welsh walks by) Lieutenant! Sir, Iím faced with a problem here. I have to take care of three kids who are apparently those of a Bounty Hunterís, Ben has taken off, Iíve got to update a bunch of files, Frannyís gone, and where is the rest of district twenty-seven?
Lt. Welsh- And I thought I was pressed for time. (Scratches head) Yes, sheís back, youíre probably gonna take care of her kids for a while. Sorry about the files, the dealers have all apparently decided to surface at all the same time, and for the rest of my men, theyíre attempting to escape the kids. Or, working, which is improbable.
Claudia- (raises brows) Are they really that bad?
Lt. Welsh- Not as long as youíve got the keys to the holding cell.

(Claudia raises them for Welsh to see)

Lt. Welsh- Well, Iíd better go!( exits quickly)
Claudia- Wait! Where!? Have you seen-aww, forget it. (Opens the door to the main corridor, and walks down. She hears giggles coming from the steps leading to the morgue) Oh, no. The morgue. ( thunders down the stairs)

(We see the kids taking things out of filing cabinets, playing with Dr. Gustafsonís tools, and (barf) opening the drawers)

Claudia- Guys! Stop it! Stop!

(They continue running amuck)

Claudia- (lets out a piercing whistle) ENOUGH! Drop it!

(Kids freeze, and Robbie drops the envelope heís holding. We hear a little tinkling noise)

Claudia- I didnít mean literally! Suzanne, Annie, stay away, Robbie back up. I donít want you stepping on any glass (kids oblige, and Claud squats beside it) Annie , can you get me that dustpan? ( Claudia dumps it out, and a bunch of test-tubes (well, whatís left of them) fall out.
(Fraser and Janet come down the stairs)

Janet- Kids! Iím sorry, I had no idea. I thought that Francesca had-
Fraser- Itís all right. (Seeing Claud kneeling on the floor) What happened?
Claudia- Umm, we had a little accident.
Janet- Kids, umm, why donít you help Claudia here. Oh, and Iím-
Claudia- Janet, the Bounty Hunter. Yeah, I know
Janet- Iíve got a title?
Fraser- Apparently so.
Claudia- (while cleaning) So, who you after?
Janet- Two guys, big into the drug scene. Really big.
Claudia- Like lords you mean?
Janet- Sure.
Fraser-  Umm, so what happened with Bradley, if you donít mind me asking.
Janet- Oh, (softly) I filed for divorce. He sees the kids on weekends.  It works. Not really well, but the kids need to see him.
Fraser- (nods)Umm, Janet, where are you staying tonight?

(All the kids look up at Fraser and Janet, wide-eyed)

Janet- Umm, the usual. Not the consulate ( scene goes to Claudia, where she mouths the word ď consulate?Ē with a very confused look on her face. Scene goes back to Janet), but weíve got some cash, so weíre gonna stay at a motel.
Fraser-  Umm, would you, how would you like, I mean, that motel is kind of-
Claudia- Wanna stay at our place?
Fraser- Thank you Claudia.
Claudia- No prob Ben.
Janet- Oh, no, I couldnít do that. Besides, your...niece?
Fraser+Claudia- God-daughter
Janet- Is staying with you.
Fraser- Oh, no, itís quite O.K. Iíve moved into a bigger apartment, and it sort of feels empty sometimes.
Claudia- You had a smaller one?
Fraser- Yes. Burnt to the ground.
Janet- Well, if itís O.K. with the kids...

(usual cheering from the kidlits)

Janet- (smiles) Well, I guess weíre all set. Claudia, would you mind taking care of the kids for a few more hours?
Claudia- Oh, not a problem.
Janet- Thanks. Umm, Fraser, can you show me how to access your files?
Fraser- Oh, actually Claudia is-
Claudia- Ben, youíd better do it. Iíve got the kids.
Fraser-Oh, well, I guess youíre right. Have fun.
Claudia- Sure (Janet and Fraser leave) Lots of fun...

( Claudia turns to the kids, and they look at her.)

Claudia- So, what do you want to do?
Robbie- Play cops and robbers!

(The kids start running around the morgue)

Claudia- O.K.! Listen up! Iím the mountie, youíre the robbers. Your a group of fraud artists, and Iíve gotta get you. But, letís play upstairs in the hall? Not down here.

Annie- Why canít we stay down here?
Suzanne- Because all the dead people will get angry at you, and suck your brains out, and put them in a jar, like this( picks up a jar holding a persons kidney).
Claudia- Donít touch the organs!

(Suzanne drops it, but Robbie grabs it before it hits the ground)

Claudia- Thank-you.

( Claudia puts it on the shelf, and they all go upstairs)

**************
 
 (scene takes place that evening. The kids are going to sleep in Fraserís room, Janetís going to sleep on the loveseat, Fraserís on the floor in  the living room, and Claudiaís got her bed-roll on Fraserís floor with the kids. They get the bed. We see a shot of each person on their bed. We stay in Fraserís room)

Annie-Robbie, stop hogging the blankets.
Robbie- Itís not my fault you have such a big butt (He and Suzanne laugh).

(They continue talking, and do so throughout the night. Claudia tries out the living room. Fraserís snoring. Janetís talking in her sleep)

Claudia- Oh, so *now* you decide to snore? Ben, I donít believe you.

( We see the clock tick by the hours. Claudia goes to the bathroom around 1, plays chess with herself at three, then at five gets dressed, cleans up, and goes to work. Fraser et al. are still sleeping.)
 

**************

(Scene takes place at five forty-five a.m. Welsh, and a few other people are doing work. Most others are out on nightwatch)

Lt. Welsh- Perhaps a bit of you will rub off on detective Vecchio.
Claudia- We should be so lucky Lieutenant. I figured Iíd catch up on my filing, and then take on another day with Janetís kids.
Lt. Welsh- Go right ahead.

( Claudia nods, and takes her place in front of the computer. She puts in a password, and enters the Dumsha files. She looks through all the categories then under conspirators. She types in a few things looking at the folder occasionally, then she scrolls down, and sees the name Lucas McCowan. She becomes very interested, and looks for the file under his name. Heís got record for dealing and having possession of drugs. He got off on a technicality. The arresting officer didnít read him his rights.)

Claudia- (slams the desk) Damn you! Dammit Lucas...(looks at her watch. Itís five fifty.) Youíve got ten minutes left to sleep McCowan, then youíre in for one hell of a wake-up call.

****************

(Scene begins with Fraser, Janet and the kids waking up. Itís almost six oíclock)

Janet- (yells) Kids! Get a move on!
Robbie- (yelling back) Iím not changiní with a bunch of girls!
Janet- Then use the bathroom! (Turns to Ben who is lacing his boots up) I hope Iím not causing you any trouble.
Fraser- Of course not. The place needed some livening up.
Janet- Is that why Claudiaís here?
Fraser- Not really. I have to take care of her for a while.
Janet- Parents away?
Fraser- (nods, and has a sad smile for a moment)Yeah.( stands up, picks up the paper, and looks through it. Janet is going through a folder, and they bump into each other.)
Janet- (looking up at him, but not backing up) Oh, (smiling) sorry.
Fraser- (also smiling) Itís my fault, I should have-
Janet- Kiss me.
Fraser-Pardon?
Janet- Kiss me.
Fraser- (contemplates it, then nods) Understood.
(they kiss, and then a voice yells from the bathroom)
Robbie- MOM!
Janet- (sighs, and rests her head against Fraserís chest) Iíd better...
Fraser- Yeah...

(she leaves the kitchen, and we see Fraser continue to stand there, with a slightly confused/pained look. He closes his eyes for a moment)
******************

(scene begins with Claudia at the desk, calling Lucas. More people are straggling in)

Claudia- ( looks at a paper reading : Lukeís priv.# : 555-0641. She dials it)

(scene goes back and forth with the speaker)

Lucas- (still in bed, shirtless and sweatpants clad. Heís really groggy) Hello..?
Claudia- Hey love. I was going through the Dumsha files, and guess who I found under conspirators?
Lucas- (still half-asleep) Who..?
Claudia- YOU! Whatís with this?! Youíre dealing drugs behind my back?
Lucas- ( Sits up, and rubs his head ) Claud, no! Itís not like that! Iím stopping!
Claudia- What? Youíre still doing it! Are you taking it too?
Lucas- Iím stopping! Iíll stop!
Claudia- Lucas, what the hell is this? When was the last time you were high?
Lucas- On what?
Claudia- On what. God Lucas, What the hell is wrong with you!?
Lucas- Come on Claudia, itís not that bad!
Claudia- Thatís bull Luke and you know it. Iíve got half a mind to tell Ray, you know that?
Lucas- Oh, no, donít tell him! Heíd kill me!
Claudia- Heís gonna have to wait in line Luke.
Lucas- Claud, Iím sorry...I..
Claudia- Luke, when was the last time you were high? And on what?
Lucas- I guess...yesterday afternoon...
Claudia- On What?!
Lucas- Flake. Thatís it.
Claudia- Thatís it?! Youíre doing coke? (People look at Claudia) Lucas, give me one reason why I shouldnít hang up on you now for good.
Lucas- Because...I love you?
Claudia- (sighs, and manages a smile) I guess.....thatís a pretty good reason.
Lucas- Look, Iíll get help, Iíll stop dealing too.
Claudia- Itís not that easy you know. Iíve seen people-
Lucas- I  know. Just, trust me on this. I will, I really will.
Claudia- Famous last words. Lucas, get help, O.K.?
Lucas- We still on for Friday? Iíve got a surprise for you!
Claudia-  Promise youíll get help.
Lucas- Are we?
Claudia- Lucas, promise me!
Lucas- O.K.
Claudia- O.K. what?
Lucas- I promise Iíll get help.
Claudia- O.K. weíre still on.(pauses) Were you ever tripped when youíve been with me?
Lucas- NO! I swear, Iíd never do that, I couldnít!
Claudia- O.K. I trust you. Bye...
Lucas- Bye love.

(Claudia hangs up, and sighs)

Claudia- Fraseríd better not find out about this. *Ray* better not find out about this.

(Franny shows up behind Claudia)

Franny- What canít I tell Ray?
Claudia- Franny, what do you know?
Franny- Umm, youíve got a coke dealing and doing boyfriend, and youíre going out sometime soon, and his nameís Lucas, and itís gonna cost you.
Claudia- All I have is Canadian. And itís Benís
Franny- Itís Fraserís?
Claudia- Yeah, I still owe him-
Franny- Iíll take it!
Claudia- But Francesca...itís hardly worth anything. Do you know how bad the Canadian dollarís been lately?
Franny- If Fraserís hands have touched it, itís worth something.
Claudia- Whatever you say. ( reaches into her wallet, and pulls out an old Canadian 50)
Franny- Ooh, itís got his picture on it too!
Claudia- Well, technically, itís not Ben, itís the musical ride. Heís been in it before, along with his fatherís friend, Buck Frobisher. Did you know that there were terrorists on the-
Franny- As much as Iíd like to hear your stories, Iíve gotta go get this bronzed.

(Franny gets up and goes)

Claudia- FRANCESCA! Youíve gotta job too ya know! And yours pays! (To herself) Not that it matters much, now that your flush with fifty.

( Janet, Fraser and the kids come through the door. Claud sees them, and quickly exits Lucasí file)

Janet- Claudia, would you mind..?
Claudia- Umm, Iíve got a bit of filing, and Frannyís run off to get a fifty bronzed, but if they stay relatively close by, I can watch them. Where are you two going?
Fraser- To check out a few buildings around you school in fact.
Janet- Weíve got some tip-offs that one of these guys is using one as a safe house.
Fraser- Have you seen Ray? He said heíd come with us.
Claudia- (while grabbing the telephone from Robbie) Umm, no. He wasnít looking too good yesterday, and said he might take the day off. If you want Iíll call him.
Fraser- That would be appreciated. Weíre going to talk to Dr. Gustafson for a moment.
Claudia- O.K. ( turns to the computer, the kids have just developed a screensaver which reads : ďPolice men sukĒ. Claudia slaps the mouse) Umm, why donít you guys go visit detective Huey? Heís got some pretty good games on his computer.
Suzanne- Nah. Weíd rather stay with you.
Claudia- Why thank-you. Iím flattered. ( Picks up the phone, looks at a post-it on the computer, and dials Ray.)

(scene goes back and forth with the speaker)

Ray- (heís sitting in an armchair, feet propped up, and a bottle of aspirin in his hand. Sheila is sitting on the arm, playing with his hair, watching TV) Vecchio.
Claudia- Hey Ray. Fraser wants to know if youíre gonna show up to go on a bounty hunt.
Ray- As enticing as that sounds, no. I feel like....like...Indyposed.
Claudia- Who? ( plugging her ear)
Ray- Not who, what. You know, it means sick. (Looks up at Sheila and smiles)
Claudia- I think you mean ď IndisposedĒ.
Ray- Yeah, that too.
Claudia- You want me to tell Welsh?! ( now having to yell over the kids who are tossing a disk back and forth over Robbieís head)
Ray- Could you? And why are you yelling?
Claudia- Janetís kids! And no problem! Oh! How was the date?! ( The kids call for pizza. In the background you hear Annie say : Yes, Iíd like 43 pizzaís delivered to the police station?)
Ray- (grins) Oh, it went really well.
Claudia- This is gonna be really weird in school on Monday!
Ray- Yeah. See you.
Claudia- Bye! (Hangs up, and a stream of water hits her in the face. She lets out a little shriek, and wipes it off)

****************

(scene begins that night with everyone going to bed in there same places. The kids start chatting again.)

Claudia- (bolts upright) O.K. look here. This isnít my house, or even my native country, but youíre gonna have to listen to my rules. Iíve got school in the morning, and I need sleep. And if I donít get that sleep, Iíll be *very* angry. So, no talking. Whispering, O.K. but only about important aspects of your lives. Nothing to do with the size of a persons butt, whoís got more blankets, or why my God-father is in Chicago in the first place. Understood?

(Kids nod, fazed)

Claudia- Good. Any questions?

(Kids mumble for a moment, then shut-up)

****************

(scene takes place that morning at school. Claudia has just entered homeroom, and the bell rings.)

Ms. Gatonsby- Class! Sit down, the bell has rung.

(Shuffling follows, then ceases)

Ms- Gatonsby- (half sitting, half leaning on the front of her desk) So, how was everyoneís weekend?
Nick- Iíd ask you the same question Miss.
Ms.Gatonsby- Pardon me?
Nick- (grinning) Some hickey youíve got there.

(Ms. Gatonsby slaps a hand to her neck, and blushes. The class laughs, and Claudia hits her head on her desk)

****************

(scene takes place that afternoon at Claudiaís school. Claudiaís in the music room, playing the love theme from ď Romeo and JulietĒ on the piano. Sheís the only one there. Until Lucas walks in)

Lucas- Do you always play the score from ď Romeo and JulietĒ when youíre upset?
Claudia- (not looking behind her) No. Sometimes I play the theme from the ďGodfatherĒ (plays the first four bars). How did you know I was upset?
Lucas- Youíve been avoiding me all day, and youíre skipping drama rehersal. You never do that.
Claudia- (turns to face Lucas) Yeah, well, Iím usually not going out with a drug addict.
Lucas- Hey, I am *not* an addict.
Claudia- Then how come itís so hard for you to stop?
Lucas- What are you talking about?
Claudia- I saw you at lunch. You were so pale, you looked like Inuvik in winter.
Lucas- O.K., I did, but thatís it. Never again
Claudia- Lucas, donít lie to me! You said youíd stop before, and you did it again! Keep your promises and Iíll keep mine! Weíre off for Friday. (gets up to leave)
Lucas- (grabs her arm) No, Claud! Come one, this time, I promise, I really do. If I ever get loaded again, then itís over. And Iíve stopped dealing. I gave everything I had to Dumsha. You can ask him. Or, just look at him.
Claudia- (contemplates it for a moment) Fine. If I see you high again, itís over. If I see you *deal* itís over.
Lucas- O.K. Deal. Umm, Claud, do you have a dress? Something fancy?
Claudia- Yeah, but Iíve never worn it. And Ben says itís too revealing.
Lucas- Do you think heíd let you get away with it for one night?
Claudia- Pardon me?
Lucas- You know how my uncleís in the navy? Well, theyíre having this big military ball Friday, and I was wondering if youíd like to go. Thatís your surprise.
Claudia- A real ball?! (Luke nods, smiling) Luke, Iíd love to!
Lucas- Can you waltz?
Claudia- Not really. Define ďwaltzingĒ.
Lucas- (laughs) No problem. Iíll show you. Youíre gonna have a blast. Hey, can you play Beethovenís ďFur EliseĒ?
Claudia- Yeah. Why?
Lucas- ( in a refined voice) Let me demonstrate a waltz. (Grabs a broom) Play my dear. (Claudia does. Lucas waltzes around with the broom. Claudia laughs)

( A moment later Ray rushes into the room, gun drawn. Claudia stops playing, Lucas drops the broom)

Ray- (shaking his head at Lucasí waltz) I always knew there was something wrong with that boy.
Claudia- Ray, whatís wrong?
Ray- That guy that Benny was after, heís here.
Lucas- Who?
Ray- Edgar McCalister.
Claudia- Want us to leave?
Ray- Yeah, itíd be wise. And Janet would like you to offer your services...?
Claudia- The kids! I completely forgot!
Lucas- Iíll walk you to the station.
Claudia- Could you run me instead? Iím fifteen minutes late.
Lucas- Can do.

(They take off)

Ray- (shaking his head) He calls that dancing. Seriously.

****************

(scene takes place the next day at school in homeroom. The class is seated, talking with each other. Ms. Gatonsby has a Band-Aid on her delightful hickey)

Ms. Gatonsby- Class, as you may have noticed, we have two visitors here today.

(Theyíre Ray and Fraser. Theyíre at the front of the class, Fraser smiling politely)

Ms. Gatonsby- Theyíre here for the purpose of drug education. So, if you would please give them your full attention, theyíll begin.

(Class shuts-up somewhat. All the girls have their full attention set on Fraser)

Ray- As you may have noticed, drugs have really started to pop up here, and thatís because of the rise in dealers in the neighbourhood. We, well, umm.... help me out here Ben.
Fraser- Certainly. As a newcomer to this country, I was shocked at the availability of drugs to young people. Where I come from-
Student- And where would that be, Red?
Fraser- The North West Territories. As I was saying, where I come from, drugs are, virtually obsolete . Now that Iíve come to Chicago, Iíve realised just how bad the problem is.
Female Student#1- So, what do you do exactly?
Fraser- I am a member of the R.C.M.P. I actually worked with Claudiaís father for a period of time. I remember one time...

(Claudia points to Fraser, and mouths to Ray ďshut him upĒ. Ray mouths back ď How?Ē)

Fraser-  Then Daniel suggested-
Ray- (nudges Fraser) Drugs?
Fraser- Oh, yes. Umm, any questions for the detective and I?
F. Student#2- Are you married Red?
Fraser- Umm, no.
F.Student#3- How old are you?
Fraser- Thirty- (Ray cuts him off)
Ray- Any questions pertaining to drugs?
F.Student#4- Are you currently seeing anyone Ben?
Fraser- (pauses for a moment) Umm-
Ray- O.K., any questions pertaining to drugs?
F.Student#2- What would you look for in a woman?
Fraser- Well, (clears throat) probably someone who is und-
Ray- O.K! Are we done here? Letís move on to our next class, shall we Benny?
F.Student#5- Constable, what are you doing in Chicago?
Ray+Claudia- Donít ask!
Ray- I guess thatís it. If you have any questions about drug use, please ask Shei- Umm, Ms. Gatonsby here, and sheíll give you a pamphlet. Thank you, good bye.
Fraser- Yes, good bye.

(They leave, and the females in the class, including Sheila and Claudia sigh.)

****************

(Scene begins that evening at the station. Franny is at the computer, Claudia is too, and it just looks like a typical evening)

Franny- Claudia, which hand types the 6?
Claudia- (while typing) The right. I think.
Franny-  I though so. Why are the keys designated to one hand anyway? Why canít I just do it the way I want?
Claudia-Iím not entirely sure. I often fudge on the rule myself. Hey, did you know that the longest word typed with the left hand is ďstewardessesĒ?
Franny- (Begins typing again) Thanks, I may need that someday.
Lt. Welsh- (yells from his office) Vecchio! You and Fraser get out to St. Agustineís! I got a call from a source! Dewey, Huey, you join them!
Huey- Yes sir!
Ray- You got it. Fraser, letís go. (Turns, and sees no Fraser) Fraser? (Leans over on  Clauidaís desk) Hey, you seen Ben?
Claudia- He was going through the filing cabinet. Looking for that Edgar McCalister guy. Ack! Heíll see Lukeís file! (Realises what sheís done, and slaps a hand to her mouth)
Ray- What did you say? Lucas has a file?

(Claudia nods, hand still over her mouth)

Ray- He deals doesnít he?

(Claudia doesnít say anything)

Ray- (looks right into Claudiaís eyes) Answer me.
Claudia- (pauses for a moment, then takes her hand off her mouth) He did. He stopped when I threatened to break it up.
Ray- Does he take it?

(Claudia doesnít answer)

Ray- (hits the desk) Claudia! I told you something was up with him! Thatís it, Iím telling Ben.
Claudia- (on the brink of tears) Ray! Please, donít!
Ray- No. Iím telling him, and thatís it. I declare your relationship over. (Turns to walk away, and Franny watches, open-mouthed)
Claudia- (grabs his hand) Ray, no. You donít know him! He promised me heíd get help. Thatís where he went after he walked me here on Monday. Please, Ray, youíve gotta believe me. Heís a nice guy!
Ray- Nice guys donít do drugs.
Claudia- (drops his hand) Ray, how many parents have you lost?
Ray- What?
Claudia- Look, he started it to get away from dealing with the loss. Both his parents are gone. When I found that out, it was like meeting a soul mate. No one Iíve ever met has ever known what it feels like. Not even Ben...only him.
Ray- Yeah, sure.
Claudia- Are you still gonna tell?
Ray- I donít know. If I find something incriminating, I will, without a doubt. Claud, you just watch it.
Claudia- ( smiles) Thank you.
Ray- Yeah. Franny, you got the Browne files?
Franny- That I do. Here (hands him a folder) Is he in on this drug ring too?
Ray- Yeah. Steve Browne.
Claudia- Hey, I know him. Heís in grade 12.
Franny-He goes to your school?
Claudia- Youíd be surprised at how many druggies do.
Franny- Then how come you donít report him?
Claudia- I value my life, thank you.
Lt. Welsh- (yelling from his office) Youíd better be gone Vecchio!
Ray- Iím gonna go find Ben. Ladies, keep looking for conspiritors. And possible safe-houses.
Franny- (giving a mock salute) Yes sir.

****************

(scene takes place that night (around 7:00) at the school. Some teachers are still there. Scene goes to outside the school by the auditorium doors. About six guys are there, and itís obvious what theyíre doing)

Steve- Yeah, I got two rocks from Luke, but he says heís not gonna retail anymore.
Dan (Dumsha)-I got his. And look, if ya want some bennies, I can cut you some, cheaper than what Sinclairís dealing for.
Dealer#1- (To Dan) Letís see what youíve got.

( Dan pulls out two tiny ziploc bags, filled with freebase cocaine)

Dan- Forty bucks for this one, twenty-five for this one.

(Scene changes to Rayís car pulling up. He, Ben and Janet are inside.)

Janet- The two tall guys are the oneís Iím after.
Fraser- (noticing Ray putting his glasses on, and straining to see outside) Who are you looking for?
Ray- (shakes his head) Heís not there.
Fraser- Anyone Iíd know?
Ray- (pauses) Nah.

(We hear Heuyís voice come over the radio.)

Huey- O.K. when are we gonna take Ďem?
Ray- Patience.(waits a moment) Now. (Ray and his companions exit the car)

(Scene goes to the druggie group. Theyíre all laughing about something. Ray and Dewey are slowly coming up along the school wall, out of view of the dealers. Ray motions for Huey to go around the other side with Janet to ambush the clique. Fraser stays with Ray. Ray peeks around the side of the building. More dealers have shown up, increasing the numbers to 10)

Ray- Damn, thereís more.
Fraser- Should I call for back-up?
Ray- Itíd help. Hurry up eh?
Fraser- Understood. (Gets up and goes to the car)
Ray- (keeping his eye on the dealers) Dewey? You ready?
Dewey- You know it.
Ray- Nods. (Grabs a walkie-talkie from his belt. Speaks to Janet) Weíre ready. Letís go. (We hear Janet agree.)

( Ray and Dewey take off after the group. The dealers (weíll just call them that to avoid confusion) see that theyíve been found out, and take off, all going in different directions.)

Ray- ( While running after one, points in the direction that others went) Ben! That way!

(Fraser and Janet follow the directions. After a few moments, they give up, as pursuit is futile. They stop, and Ray comes up from behind them)

Ray- (pant, pant) He got away. (Pant, pant)
Janet- Weíll try again tomorrow.

*****************

( Scene takes place the next afternoon at Clauidaís school. Drama rehersal has ended, and sheís just exited the auditorium by way of the doors leading directly outside. Dan steps in front of her.)

Dan- Well, hello there Claudia. How was rehearsal?
Claudia- Fine thank you. (Tries to get by, but Dan calls up a few lackeys, and they surround her) Do you mind?
Dan- (grabs her by the collar) Of course I do. Youíre a little rat, you know?
Claudia- What are you talking about? ( gets out of his hold)
Dan- You know damn well what Iím talking about. Those cops were here last night.
Claudia- Yeah, well, you know what they say, youíll get caught sooner or later.
Dan-  Thatís *not* what I mean. That red-clad freak was here. With some girl.
Claudia- And this relates to me in what way?
Dan- Cut the crap. Youíre related to him, arenít you? You told him we were gonna deal that night.
Claudia- O.K. Number one, Iím not related to him, and number two, how would I know if you were dealing? I never speak to you.
Dan- Lucas mustíve told you.
Claudia- Donít blame him, O.K.? As a matter of fact, donít blame *me* either. We never said anything. I heard that the Lieutenant got a tip from a source, thatís all I know. Now, if you donít mind, call your peons off.
Dan- Back off guys. ( they do, and Claudia walks away)
Lackey#1- Hey, Dan, whatís a peon?
Dan- A fancy word for ďponyĒ
Lackey#1- Oh.

*****************

( scene begins with Ray dropping Sheila off after a date. Rayís wearing tan cords, and a white t-shirt. Sheila is wearing black pants, and a silk,lavender shirt.)

Sheila- ( still smiling) Thanks Ray, I had a great evening. Youíre a great dancer
Ray- Yeah...
Sheila- ( opens the door, but then decides not to exit, and faces Ray) Is something wrong? You seem distracted.
Ray- Sheila, have you taught a boy named Lucas McCowan?
Sheila- As a matter of fact, yes. He was one of my best students, until, well, he started hanging around Daniel.
Ray- As in Dumsha?
Sheila- Yeah. His parents died last year, and well, you know. Heís coming around though. Why do you ask?
Ray- Claudiaís going out with him, and well...
Sheila- Youíre worried?
Ray- Yeah. I donít really trust him. She says heís stopped, but....
Sheila- Ray, Iíll keep an eye on him. Would that make you feel better?
Ray- Yeah Sheila. Thanks.
Sheila- No problem. (Leans forward and kisses Ray) Good-night. (Gets out of the car)
Ray-Good night.

****************

( Scene begins with Ray entering the station. Claudia walks by with files in one hand, and Robbie on her back. Literally.)

Ray- (grins) Having fun?
Claudia-  Oh, tons. Care to join the festivities?
Ray- Not a chance.
Franny- ( calling from her desk) Ray! Phone!
Ray- Take a message!
Franny- Itís Stella!
Ray- Coming! ( makes his way to the phone, and takes it from Francesca) Hello?

(Scene goes to Stella)

Stella- Hi Ray. I have a favour to ask of you.
Ray- Shoot.
Stella- Well, my apartment is being fumigated, and they only told me today. Do you think I could stay at your place?

(Scene goes to Ray)

Ray- (smiling, but covering his glee)Yeah, yeah, sure. When are you gonna come by?

(Scene goes to Stella)

Stella- Around eight if thatís O.K. Um, Ray, this is just....

(scene goes to Ray)

Ray- (losing his smile) I know, I know. This doesnít mean....

(Scene goes to Stella)

Stella- Just as friends, nothing more. See you then Ray. (Hangs up)

(Scene goes back to Ray)

Ray- (still holding the phone) Just as friends...

*****************

(Scene begins around seven oíclock that night at Benís apartment. Benís in jeans and a white sweater, Janetís in jeans a white t-shirt, and shoulder-holster. Claudia is in blue cords, wearing a white T, with a matching cord jacket. The kids are dressed in usual stuff, jeans for the girls, sweatpants for Robbie)

Fraser- Claudia, where are you going?
Claudia- Uhh, out?
Fraser- With Lucas?
Claudia- Yes.
Fraser- Have fun.
Claudia- Ben, Iím sorry! I know I should have told you, my conscience was- wait. Did you say...
Fraser- Have fun.
Claudia- Oh, well then. Good-bye. ( heads for the door)
Fraser- Hold it! ( she stops) What are you sorry about?
Claudia- Uhh...well...lucaskindahasafile.
Fraser- Pardon?
Claudia- Ooh, nothing. Forget it.
Fraser- (forcefully) Pardon?
Claudia- (lets out a defeated sigh) Lucas has a file.
Fraser- (in disbelief) Pardon?
Claudia- Yeah. Heís stopped dealing though, and he stopped doing, and heís getting help.
Fraser- And youíre still going out with him?!
Claudia- Yes. Look Ben, heís cleaned up his act, and like I said, heís getting help, and-
Fraser- How long have you known this?
Claudia- I found out on...Sunday I guess...so...
Fraser- Youíve been going out for God knows how long , you donít bother telling me that, and now heís a drug addict, and you donít tell me *that*?!
Claudia- See! This is why I never told you! You blow everything out of proportion!

(Janet in the meantime, walks into the kitchen, brushing Suzanneís hair. They stop in the doorway)

Fraser- Iím not blowing anything out of proportion! Heís doing drugs Claudia! Do you have any idea what your father would say?
Claudia- Dad would probably be saying the same things you are. Ben, Iíll make it up to you, I swear. Anything you want.
Fraser- Then break off the relationship.
Claudia- Except that.
Janet- ( steps up beside Fraser) Could you do something for me?
Claudia- Anything.
Janet- Could you take the kids out with you?
Claudia- No problem. I just call Lucas and tell him that weíre gonna have company.

( Annie and Robbie walk into the room)

Annie- I donít wanna go out with some crack head.

( everyone looks at her in shock)

Janet- Annie! Thatís not very nice!
Annie- Iím still not going to go out with him.
Claudia- Fine. I guess Iíll just be taking your sister and brother to the movies.
Annie- What movie are you going to see?
Claudia- Well, I guess ďFallenĒ is out of the question. What do you want to see?
Suzanne- ďTitanicĒ? Please?
Robbie- Thatís a stupid movie.
Suzanne- No itís not.
Robbie- Sure it is. Itís about a big boat that sinks Ďcause of a Canadian iceberg.
Fraser- (to Claudia) You canít help but feel responsible to some extent.
Claudia- I know.
Annie- Too bad for you Robert Bradley Morris. Weíre going to Titanic whether you like it or not.
Claudia- Come on Robbie. Itíll be fun. ( whispers in his ear) You and Lucas can throw M&Mís at the people in the rows ahead of us.
Robbie- O.K.!
 

( Claudia picks up the phone to call Luke, and Fraser hands her some cash.)

***************

( Scene begins about 20 minutes later. Claudia is looking out the window. We look outside also, and see a white Grand Prix pull up.)

Claudia- Guys!? Lukeís here! Letís go!

( Thereís a stampede to the door. Claudia exits last, and shuts the door.)

Janet- (sighs) Free.

(Fraser walks into the living room)

Fraser- Would you care for a late dinner?
Janet- (smiles) Iíd  enjoy that.

*****************

(Scene begins with Fraser and Janet sitting at the table, eating salmon steaks and what not. Theyíve even got a bottle of (gasp!) wine. Theyíre in the middle of a conversation, laughing)

Janet- Youíre kidding!?
Fraser- I wish I was. We had to hide a dead body for his whole shift.
Janet- And you found him in the wall?
Fraser- Actually, Ray found him. He punched a hole in the drywall.
Janet- And people say police work isnít exciting.
Fraser- Speaking of police work, how long are you staying?
Janet- (stops laughing, and her smile fades) As soon as I get these guys. Then itís back to Montana.
Fraser- Oh. I see.
Janet- Iím sorry.
Fraser-No, I understand. You have a responsibility.
Janet- Well, I suppose thereís one way I could stay.
Fraser- Howís that?
Janet- Never catch them?
Fraser- Is that an option?
Janet- I donít think so....I was just hoping...
Fraser- Me too...

****************

( Scene begins the next day (Thursday) at around 4:30 at Claudiaís school. Sheís at drama rehersal, and Ben, Ray, Janet and the ď Duck BoysĒ are parked outside, waiting for Dumsha)

Fraser- Ray, are you sure theyíre going to be here?
Ray- Relax Ben. My source is very reliable.
Fraser- I understand, itís just that, donít you think itís a bit early? Teacherís are still here, itís not very well planned.
Ray- Well, these guys arenít very swift Ben.
Fraser- all right then.

( A moment later, Dumsha comes out the auditorium doors with a few pals. A second later, three guys get out of a car in the parking lot, and make their way to Dan. Scene goes to Ray, Ben and Janet in the car)

Ray- I told you Ben.
Fraser- I believed you.
Ray- No you didnít.
Fraser- Yes, I did.
Ray- No, you didnít.

(Hueyís voice comes over the walkie-talkie.)

Huey- Ray, anytime now.
Ray- Relax, Iíve got it all under control.
Fraser- You do?
Ray- Of course I do.
Huey- Well, when are we going to go?
Ray- When I say so.

( Scene goes back to the deal being made. Scene goes to the car)

Ray- O.K, letís go.

( They exit the car, and slowly make their way to their target point, walking close to the wall. Dumsha spots them, and yells: ďBreak!Ē the druggies then spread out, Dumsha and Steve running inside the school.)

Ray- (to the walkie talkie, whilst running inside the school) Huey! They made a break and went inside the school!
Huey- (voice only) Got it.

( Dan and Steve run in the doors which lead to the auditorium. They run across the stage, knocking over props and people, Ms. Gatonsby being one of them. Scene goes to Ray trying to pull open the door. Itís locked. Scene goes back to Dan and Steve running through the hall outside the auditorium. They run into Claudia, script in hand)

Dan- ( Grabbing her by the shirt) You little snitch!
Claudia- (breaking out of his hold) You know, if you cut down on your coke intake, I bet these fits would reduce.
Dan- Look,  the copís are here, and they *knew*. Tell me how.
Claudia- Umm, lucky guess?

( Ray, Fraser, Janet, and a few students open the auditorium doors, and step into the hallway. Dan produces a .45 from his jacket)

Claudia- Gotta go. Bye! ( runs over to the group and skids into Ray)
Ray- Nice friends youíve got here (Pulls Claudia behind him with one hand, (sheís now in front of Janet) the other hand holding his gun).
Claudia- Tell me about it.

( Lucas then picks this exact moment to come out of the menís room, holding a small Ziploc bag of crack)

Lucas- Dan, here. I found some more, you- (notices the large group of people at the other end of the hall). Hey...whatís going on.
Dan- I knew youíd never give up on that stuff. Címon ( Grabs Lukeís arm, and runs down the hall).
Ray+Janet ( Almost in unison) Stop!

( Janet goes after them, and fires. Dan, the nice guy that he is, uses Luke as a shield. They both fall. Dan tries to get back up, but Lucas doesnít. Claudia makes a run for Lucas, but Janet holds her back. Claudia struggles against her hold)

Claudia- Lucas! Lucas! No, Lucas! Ben, h-help him!

( Fraser goes up to Lucas, and takes a pulse. Unfortunately, there isnít one. He turns to Janet, and shakes his head. Claudia slumps to the floor, sobbing and stuff. Ray goes up to Dan, and takes him by the arm, lifting him up.)

Ray- You have the right to remain silent, anything you say or do can be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to a lawyer. If you canít afford one....

**************

( Scene begins around 7:00 at the police station. Frannyís doing her best to cheer Claudia up. Fraser, Ray and Janet are in Lt. Welshís office. The kids are all with Dewey, playing Minesweeper on his computer)

Franny- So how was the movie?
Claudia- Good.
Franny- I remember one time, Ray took me to a movie, and it was in one of those old theatres, you know, with the balcony? Anyway, we spent the whole time throwing Junior Mints at the people below us. I was about eight.
Claudia- (smiles) Luke still does....did..that.
Franny- Hey, whatever happened to Ray and your teacher?
Claudia- Oh, yeah. Ray broke it up. I think it has something to do with the Stella issue. Iím gonna go find Ben.

( She doesnít have to go far, as Fraser steps up to the desk)

Fraser- Claudia, you ready to go home?
Claudia- Yup. Bye Francesca.
Franny- Bye Claudia.
Fraser- (turns behind him) Janet?
Janet- Coming. Kids? ( they fall into line behind their mom)
Claudia- (pulls Fraser over by the desk) Ben, this may sound selfish, but I canít stay if she is.
Fraser- Claudia, be reasonable. Where else are you going to stay?
Claudia- The tank, under Francescaís desk, the exam table in the morgue, just not with her. Ben, Iím sorry, itís just that....
Fraser- Claudia, stop being so selfish. And stop complaining.
Claudia- Iím not complaining.
Ray- ( walks up to Fraser, then jumps beside him) Evening. ( hands Fraser a file) Janetís gotta sign this. Claud, how are you?
Claudia- It doesnít get easier, Iíll tell you that.
Fraser- Letís go.
Claudia- Letís not.
Fraser- Claudia, I said it wasnít possible. Letís go.
Ray- Whatís not possible?
Claudia- I donít want to stay with a executioner tonight.
Fraser- ( sternly) Claudia, thatís enough. She did not murder Lucas.
Claudia- It wasnít in self defence. You know the law. Section 9, regulation 926*.
Ray- Claudia, this is America. Guilty until proven innocent.
Claudia- Or shot. Ben, I canít...( losing her composure). Could you stay in the same room with the man who shot your father?
Ray- The kidís got a point. Claud, stay with me.
Claudia- But, Stellaís staying with you.
Ray- Donít worry about The Stella. Sheíll be fine with it.
Fraser- Ray, I couldnít let you-
Ray- Ben, thatís what friends are for. Claud, weíll go to Benís apartment first.
Claudia- Thanks Ray. Bye Ben.

( They exit)

*****************

( Scene begins that night in Rayís apartment. Claudiaís on the couch, Stella and Ray sharing Rayís bed. (No, they werenít doing anything). Stella gets up to close the window in the living room.)

Claudia- ( rolls over, and watches Stella close the window.) Oh, sorry. I forgot to close it.
Stella- Oh, did I wake you?
Claudia- No. I canít sleep.
Stella- Ray told me what happened. Iím...sorry.
Claudia- Yeah...Youíd think itíd get easier. But it doesnít.
Stella- I donít think it would. If you lose someone you love...
Claudia- I feel so..cheated. I hate this...(looks over on to the small table by the couch. She sees the framed picture of Stella and Ray)
Stella- ( looks at it too, and smiles) Heís a great dancer. Itís so easy with him...effortless. I miss him.
Claudia- You still love him, donít you?
Stella- ( nods) I do.

( Ray in the meantime, has also gotten up, and is watching from the bedroom. Scene periodically goes to him)

Claudia- If you donít mind me asking...why did it end?
Stella- Clash of jobs...(smiles) Heís so stubborn. He doesnít like other people telling what to do. Kids too. He wanted them, I didnít.
Claudia- Lucas was like that. Not with the kids, but...a real pain sometimes. But I still loved him.
Stella- I know the feeling. (pause)Youíd better get to bed.
Claudia- Yeah, Iíll try.

( Stella makes her way back to the bedroom. Rayís back in bed. She lays down. Ray rolls over, and faces her back)

Ray- You wouldíve made a great mother.

( We see Stella smile, but she does not turn to face Ray.)

**************

( Scene begins the next morning @ Fraserís apartment. Janet is getting ready to leave. The kids have gone out the door, and she and Fraser are trying to say goodbye.)

Janet- Thanks Fraser. This was nice...
Fraser- Thereís nothing you could do to change this. Youíve got a obligation.
Janet- Obligations suck.
Fraser- I agree.
Janet- I could never work though...what with the kids....my job..
Fraser- I understand.

( Suzanne calls from the elevator)

Suzanne- MOM! Letís go!
Fraser- Youíd better....
Janet- ..Go...

( They embrace, and a kiss follows. They break away)

Janet- Itís always going to be like this, isnít it?

(Fraser nods)

Janet- Iíd better leave
Fraser- Can I see you again?
Janet- You know the answer to that. (Silence)

( Robbie calls from the elevator)

Robbie- MOM! Weíre not waiting anymore!
Janet- (sighs) Montana is calling.
Fraser- You should be going.
Janet- Yeah. ( picks up her purse. She turns to say something to Fraser) I-
(Annie calls this time)

Annie-* MOM!!!*

(Janet looks to the floor, and turns away from Ben. She walks away. Fraser is on the brink of tears)

***************

( Scene begins that afternoon (around 4:00) @ Rayís apartment. Claudia didnít go to school, sheís laying on the couch watching MTV. Ray walks in.)

Ray- Didnít go to school?
Claudia- I was half way there...but then, I remembered, Blur were on Rosie OíDonnell.
Ray- Oh.
Claudia- We were supposed to go to that ball tonight.( pause) He never taught me to dance. ( smiles sadly) Iíve never danced with a boy before. Pathetic, isnít it.
Ray- Well, with the way that boy danced, I donít think youíd want him to teach you ( he thinks for a moment, then goes and hits the tape deck.Ē Time to Say GoodbyeĒ by Sarah Brightman begins to play ). May I have this dance?
Claudia- (smiling) I canít dance, remember?
Ray- I might as well pass my talent to someone, right?

( Claudia gets up, and makes her way to the carpet where Ray is standing. She slowly, awkwardly at first, takes his hands, and starts to dance. Soon, it becomes more natural)

( The music continues to play, but the scene changes. First, to Stella, who is now back in her apartment. She picks up her wedding band, and fingers it, a wistful expression on her face. Scene then changes to Fraser at the kitchen table, picking up Janetís silver ring which she left behind.

*Fin*

   *- ďA member of a police force shall not draw a handgun or discharge a firearm unless he or she believes, on reasonable ground, that to do so is necessary to protect against loss of life  or serious bodily harmĒ
( section 9, regulation 926: equipment and use of force)