Claudia wasn't much of a party person. Her idea of a good time was tinkering with something in the Warehouse, or else exploring -- even if some of the sections scared the ever-loving crap out of her -- or even getting on Artie's nerves. She couldn't help that, she never meant to get on his nerves in a bad way, he was just so fun to pester sometimes. She did it with love, really she did.
But her idea of a good time was most definitely not going clubbing, so when Steve had brought up the idea she'd just kind of looked at him. "Uh, hello, did you forget you were talking to me here?"
"Nope," Steve said with a quick shake of his head. "But I figured hey, it's your twenty-first birthday. You should celebrate that."
"How'd you know -- no, you know what? I don't even want to know how you found out," Claudia said, giving her own shake of her head. "But even if you want to go out and hit the nightlife or whatever, where exactly are we gonna go? Not like Univille's a hotbed of social activity."
That was a bit of an understatement, really.
"Little place I know," Steve said mysteriously. "Heard about it from a friend. Okay, so yeah, it's like an hour and a half's drive but Claud, I promise the drive is so worth it."
Claudia just looked at him for a moment. "If I say no, you're gonna do that puppy dog begging face thing, aren't you?"
"Pretty much," he replied cheerfully.
"... oh, all right," she said after a moment. "Fine. You win."
Two hours later, Claudia was seriously beginning to regret ever having said yes to Steve.
"Do you have any idea where exactly we're going?" she asked, looking over at him as he drove.
"I know exactly where we're going," he said.
"Uh-huh." She made a skeptical face at him. "Then why have we gone past that poor lonely deformed tree like four times in the past twenty minutes?"
"... it has a lot of identical relatives?"
Claudia's jaw dropped. "You're lost. You got us lost! Are you kidding me?"
"I used the GPS!" Steve said defensively. "Aren't those things supposed to actually know where they're going?"
"Yeah, sure, unless the maps are never updated or the address is in some weird random location or, I don't know, the universe is trying to tell me that going to a club with a former ATF agent was a really really bad idea!" Claudia was starting to flail just a teensy bit. Well, more than a teensy bit. But only a teensy bit according to the Claudia scale of flailing about things.
Uncertainty flashed across Steve's face. "I know I put the address in right, at least," he said, as though hopeful that those words would keep Claudia from going utterly postal on him.
"Oh, sure, like that helps us right now," she said, running her fingers through her hair, giving it an unkempt, spiky look -- which was a feat indeed, given that it already looked intentionally unkempt and spiky. "Look, we gotta figure out where we are so we can figure out how to get to this club -- which so better be worth it, mister." She fixed Steve with a glare that despite it all, wasn't entirely annoyed. She did know he was just trying to be nice, even if the attempt had gone sorely awry.
Steve frowned at the GPS. "Okay, we're on that street right there," he said, reaching out to tap the GPS screen at the same time as he pulled off to the side of the road. "And we're supposed to be... going by this, we're like ten minutes from where we want to be." He looked at Claudia hopefully. "That's good, right?"
"That's very good," she said with a nod, hating the puppy dog expression already creeping onto his face. He was too good at that expression, puppy dog mixed with hope. "So now we just need to get from point A to point B." They could figure out later how the GPS had gotten them so utterly not where they wanted to be. If they even still cared by then. After this, Claudia wanted a drink.
Steve pulled back onto the road and got underway. Hopefully things were going to go better or this was going to go down in history as the worst birthday celebration in recent memory.
Claudia was less than thrilled when they reached the club. On the outside, it looked outrageously busy and even more not at all her kind of thing. But Steve was trying to do something nice for her, and she didn't have a whole lot of people who'd do that for her, so... she'd grin and bear it. And possibly figure out a way to hide in a corner all night without actually looking like she was hiding.
The less than thrilled went away when they got inside and she actually saw the place. It was in a renovated warehouse, for one thing, and gave off a distinct feeling of quirky and funky, probably something to do with the various bits and bobs of old technology decorating the walls.
"Steve, how did you know?"
He shrugged. "I know you, Claud," he said simply. "I know what you like. You really think I'd bring you someplace you wouldn't enjoy?"
She pounced on him, hugging him tightly before bouncing backwards. "This place looks awesome!"
He laughed softly. "I'm glad you like it," he said. "I was worried. I mean, I knew it was the kind of place you'd like but I was still worried that maybe I'd misjudged something."
"I don't think you misjudged a damn thing," Claudia said with a grin, still bouncing on the balls of her feet. "This place is awesome and might be my new second favorite place ever."
The Warehouse being number one, of course.
"In that case..." He gave her a low, playful bow. "Care to dance?"
Her answer was yes.