The petition for child custody lay crumpled on the floor.
"What's wrong?" he asked nervously. "What is it?"
Rachel groaned and buried her face in her hands, turning from her son. Haley squeezed her shoulder and stood.
Rio glanced between his mom and Haley. "He's taking Shayla?" he asked with a broken voice before his anger kicked in, his jaw clenching. He loudly yelled, "Hell no! Not happening!"
"Shaye!" Kelli cried with alarm. "Oh my God!"
"You can't take her!" Rio repeated, trying to pull his hands free to attack Shaye again. He was just so angry. He didn't even see the tears dripping from his cheeks. "You can't!" he said again, slowly stopping his struggles. "You can't..."
Seeing the stoic Rio have such an emotional outburst nearly unmanned Shaye. He felt tears pricking his eyes. "Aw, Rio, I would've taken you in a heartbeat if you were mine," he said with a thick voice, squeezing him tight. "I'm so sorry."
Shaye shot Kelli a stern look. She met his gaze with her own glare.
"So now what?" Rio finally asked quietly.
Rio nodded head tersely and rested his chin on his hands, his stomach cramping with nervousness. He had no clue what was going to happen. Crap, he'd really messed up...
Kelli scoffed rudely behind him. "I'll let the officer in." Shaye stood up and followed her from the room. Rio heard their soft murmuring from the other room.
Officer French-Baker rocked back on his heels. "Are you saying there was no assault?" he asked.
Shaye nodded. "That's right. He just needed to vent."
French-Baker glanced between Kelli and Shaye, noting the fiance's tight-lipped smile. He nodded towards the teen on the couch. "This him?"
Rio stood and faced the officer. He was in for it now...
Officer French-Baker shook his head with a smile as he reached for the coffee cup. He took a swig and grimaced. "Ugh. It's cold." Sighing, he faced Rio. "No, I'm just going to take you home. Mr. Albright said that your mother or aunt should be at home right now."
Rio nodded. Oh God, Tia Haley was going to be so mad at him! He swallowed. "Are you sure you can't just arrest me?" he asked nervously, attempting a lame joke.
The officer didn't even crack a smile. "Believe me, you'd rather face your mom than go to jail, kid."
Rio worried his lip. He wasn't so sure about that...
"Buckle up," the officer said as he put the car in drive.
When the doorbell rang, she jumped up and rushed to the door.
"Ma'am," the officer said, touching his finger to his cap. "There was a bit of a misunderstanding at the Albright household. Are you his mother?"
Haley's stomach flipped. "Oh, Rio! What did you do?" she asked in horror.
"Ma'am?" The officer pressed.
Haley glanced back at the officer and shook her head. "No, I'm his..." she hesitated. "I'm his aunt. Haley Black-Wolff."
Officer French-Baker nodded. "Mr. Albright assures me that there was no need to file any charges. His fiance was just a little jumpy when Mr. Vasquez got excited. I'll leave him with you."
"Thank you, sir," Haley said, watching the officer leave.
Rio hung his head, shrugging. Tears brimmed in his eyes again as he pressed his lips together in a thin line.
Rio nodded meekly and headed inside up to his room.
Rachel hesitated a moment and then nodded. "Yes, I am. I don't want to lose my daughter."
"You got here fast," Haley was saying as she led him inside, assuming he'd come to town to support his sister, Rachel.
"What happened? I didn't get a call," Johnny said with concern. He shouldn't have left for so long, but he'd been stuck undercover for longer than he'd expected. But although he'd shut down Big Louie's criminal operations, he had no doubt that another would pop up in its' place.
Haley stared for a moment, her mind completely blank. He was here for her? Her knees felt a little weak when he took a step closer, his gaze holding steady with hers. She inhaled unevenly and caught a whiff of his aftershave. He was going to kiss her...
When her phone rang, the moment was broken. "I should get that. It might be important," she whispered softly.
"Yes, I'll call you later. Goodnight." She ended her phone call quietly.
*AN: Oh my gosh! Johnny just happened to come over for a visit when Rachel and Maritza were away from the house! *swoon* Now Haley is going to have to choose!