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Author's Chapter Notes:

Sorry this one is so short!

The guys heard AJ yelling from the living room and came tearing down the hallway. The person that met them at the door was not who they were expecting.

 “I repeat, what are you doing here?” AJ asked Claudia.

 “Can I come in?”

 “Hell no!” Nick yelled. “After everything you and the bitch did, you can say whatever you need to from that front step!”

 By this time, Denise and Leigh had joined the guys. Kristen and Leighanne had taken the kids back outside so that wouldn’t be near the argument.

 “It’s about Michelle.”

 “Who gives a shit?” Nick yelled again.

 “Calm down Nick.” Kevin said.

 “Why should he?” AJ demanded. “Get off my front porch and tell your friend to stay out of my life.”

 AJ started to shut the front door, when Claudia stuck her foot in it.

 “You are going to want to hear this.”

 “I don’t really want to hear anything you have to say but if I do, will you go away?” AJ said snidely.


 “Fine, spit it out.”

 “Michelle is dead.” Claudia stated with no emotion. “She got hammered the other night and totaled her car. She didn’t make it.”

 “Was Ryan in it?” AJ asked, starting to panic.

 “No but he’s the reason I came. You need to take him.”

 “Excuse me?”

 “He and Michelle have been living with me and I can’t deal anymore. He’s not my kid so you need to take him.”

 “I’m not his father Claudia, Michelle made that quite clear.”

 “I know but you need to take him.”

 “The courts aren’t just going to let him have Ryan.” Brian said quietly. “He’s not the dad.”

 “Well Ryan’s birth certificate says otherwise.”

 “She said she left his name off!” Kevin yelled. “When she took Ryan, she told AJ he had no rights because his name wasn’t on the birth certificate.”

 “She lied. She was good at that.”

“But I’m not the father.” AJ whispered.

 “No you’re not but you need to take him. Technically I can give him to you. If you don’t, I’ll take him down to Child Services tomorrow.”

 “You can’t do that!” Howie said angrily. “He’s a child, not some article of clothing.”

 “I really don’t care. I’m not being saddled with this kid.” Claudia turned to face AJ. “Are you taking him or not?”

 “Yes, we’re taking him.”

 Everyone turned around to find Kat standing behind them.