She found her friend sitting alone, watching TV.
Zoe was very happy to get a visit from Lana.
"Oh my gosh--you look SUPER CUTE!" Zoe gushed.
"Yeah, I really like the uniform," Lana agreed. "Though it's really different from the trailer-park stuff I usually wear!" she laughed.
The two girls went into the bar and Zoe mixed them drinks,
while Lana regaled her with funny stories about her odd parolee, Devin Austin.
"Ummm, are you sure you're safe around this guy?" Zoe worried.
"Oh, BELIEVE me--I've started having our meetings in public places," Lana assured her.
"So, how's Rafael?" Lana asked, after Zoe sat down.
"He's out again," Zoe said, "as he HAS been pretty much ALL the time, since a few nights ago when the three of us had dinner together. As usual, he didn't tell me where he was going--just that he had something 'important' to do."
"I hope there's nothing wrong between you two," Lana said supportively.
"I don't know," Zoe responded, sounding a bit worried. "I may have screwed things up--I told Rafael I didn't think we were spending enough time together. And maybe that spooked him."
After dinner, Derek and Declan sat down in the living room.
"At least you finally got a TV," the boy said.
Derek had no idea why all of a sudden there was a TV in his house.
He had asked his friends to buy low-cost furnishings for Declan's temporary bedroom, so that he could reimburse them from the small amount of disposable income he had. (The extravagant nursery had cost a LOT.)
After watching TV for a while, Declan agreed to go to bed without TOO much grumbling.
Derek sat down to watch the news, with the sound down as much as possible, so as not to wake Declan.
Peter came in the front door.
"How's it going, dude?" Peter asked him, sitting down.
"Is this from you?" Derek asked, indicating the TV.
"Yeah, but it's a loaner," Peter told him. "I'm going to want it back in a year or so."
"Thanks, man. So, how are things going over at your house? Am I getting divorced???"
Peter didn't answer the second question, but just said, "Lou's home from work, so she's talking to Kelly. I just thought I'd give them some space."
"So, if Lou's home, that must mean she's gotten the results of the DNA test she ran yesterday," Derek surmised.
"Yup, the kid's yours," Peter told him.
"I knew it," Derek said gloomily. "Because he's just as much of an asshole as I am."