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Disclaimer: "The Sopranos" and its characters belong to HBO, David Chase, and
Brad Grey Television. No infringement is intended. This story, "Problem
Solved" is mine.

Sopranos: Problem Solved (m/f)
by Tofu Girl

As Tony ran his fingers over her body, Carmela's mind raced. "This feels so
wonderful," she thought, "I love him so much. Lord, make him want me. Make
him want only me. If I could just get him away for a while-a trip maybe-then
we'd be happier."

Tony interrupted her thoughts, "Carm? Carm, where are you?"

"I'm right here, Tony."

Tony rose, the confusion in his eyes slowly turning to anger. "No, Carmela,
you're not right here. What the fuck, Carm? You tell me to be true to you,
you're always on my fuckin' back about other women, and now you're
daydreaming during sex? What the fuck, Carmela, make up your fuckin' mind
already. Either you want me here or you don't. But don't keep dickin' me
around like this."

"Tony," Carmela pleaded, "I'm not daydreaming. Really. I'm just..."

"Naw, I'm sick of this shit," he snapped. Tony got up and buttoned his shirt.
"I'm goin' out."

"Tony, no," she begged, "Just..." The bedroom door slammed before she could
finish her sentence. Carmela picked up the phone and started dialing. Furious
with rage, she slammed the phone down. Realizing she had no one to call, no
one to go to, she cried.

* * * * * * *

Tony paced back and forth in the office of the Bada Bing!. "I don't know
what's wrong with her, Sil. She's changed. She's always fuckin' ridin' me
- about Rina, about the kids. It never fuckin' stops. So I call it off with
Rina, and Carmela doesn't believe me - still calls me a fuckin' cheat. And
then we're doin' it and she's not even payin' attention-she's makin' a
fuckin' shopping list for all I know."

"You know, T., they say that men and women get different things from sex,"
Dante reasoned.

"What the fuck you talkin' about?"

"Well, you know, they say that women give sex to get love, and men give love
to get sex."

Tony took a big puff on his cigar. "So what are you telling me?"

"Tony, I'm sayin' maybe you need to give her more love."

Tony, now agitated, threw his Cuban down on the floor, "Aww, I can't fuckin'
talk to you. I can't fuckin' talk to anyone." As Tony stormed out of the
office, Dante heard him mumble, "I need a fuckin' drink."

* * * * * * *

"Mom? I'm home, Mom. Mom?" Meadow came in the door and threw her bag on the
floor. "Mom," she had the uncanny ability to make the word "mom" into a
three-syllable word. Meadow grabbed a coke from the fridge, and noted how
odd it was that Carmela wasn't in the kitchen as usual. As she climbed the
stairs, she began to worry. It wasn't like Mom to be gone at night, and it
was nearly nine o'clock already...where was everyone? Meadow knocked on her
parent's bedroom door and snuck in quietly. "Mom?" All the lights were out,
and Meadow tripped on the Persian rug. She found the light and saw something
on the bathroom door. A note. With some apprehension, Meadow opened the note.

"Dear Tony, A.J. is spending the night next door. Meadow will be home before
10. I, however, will not be home. We're at a stand still, Tony. And I don't
know what to do about it. Maybe I'll find some answers where I'm going. I
don't know how long I'll be gone. Tell the kids not to stay up too late. -C."

Meadow sank onto the bed. "What the hell?" She picked up the phone and called
her father.

* * * * * *

Tony's phone rang at least seven times before he answered it. And when he
answered it, he sounded rather pissed, "Yeah."

"Dad?"

"Meadow? What's wrong?" He sounded drunk.

"Mom's gone. She left a note. She's gone," Meadow said meekly.

"What? Stay right there. I'll be home in a minute." As he hung up, he
motioned for Christopher. "Take me home...I can't drive."

* * * * * *

When Tony got home, he was in no mood to deal with anything, let alone what
was waiting for him at home. He rushed into the house, "What happened? Where
is she? Where's your mother?"

"She...I...," Meadow stammered, her eyes filling with tears.

"Meadow, just give me the damn note." Meadow handed it over and embraced
Christopher.

"You okay, Mead?" Christopher soothed.

Tony read the note, then reread it. "Fuck!" He yelled as he threw the Mingh
vase that he'd bought for Carmela on their tenth anniversary. Tony ripped out
his cell phone and angrily punched numbers. Then he thought again and hung
up. "No, this has to stay in the family," he thought. "Christopher. Go to
that pretty boy priest she's always hangin' around with. If she's not there,
he'll know where she is."

"Will do, Tony. We'll find her," he answered as he quickly left.

"Now Meadow, tell me what happened."

"What do you mean, what happened? You drove her away, that's what happened.
You're always running around on her. You think we don't know, but everybody
knows. Everyone knows you don't love her," she whimpered.

Tony raised his hand to her but then caught himself, "Now Meadow, whatever
happens between your mother and me is our business."

"Oh yeah?" Meadow challenged. "Whose business was it at Janice's engagement
party when Mom started bawling her eyes out in the bathroom? You don't love
her. She's just a glorified maid to you."

"Go to your room, Meadow," he said, under his breath.

"But Dad..."

"GO!" Tony barked.

Meadow reluctantly went upstairs and slammed her door.

Tony slumped down on the new $8,000 Italian leather sofa Carmela had bought
last week. "She thinks I think Carmela is a glorified maid? Well then what
am I to Carmela? Nothing but a money tree," he thought. And he looked at the
big chocolate stain on the right arm from the double-decker chocolate-dipped
ice cream cone A.J. had brought back from the D.Q. that day. "Fuck," he
thought, "my kids got no respect for anything or anyone."

In spite of it all, though, he loved them...all of them. He remembered how
beautiful Carmela had looked on their wedding day-how the sex they had on
their wedding night was the best they'd ever had...the best he'd ever had in
his life, actually. And as he sat and remembered Carmela over the years, he
realized, "I love Carmela. I love her with all my being. She's the one. And
I'm nothin' without her - and now she's fuckin' gone. Fuck me. Why didn't I
end it with Rina earlier?" Tony's reverie was interrupted by a phone call.

"It is Rina, she is dead," Svetlana said curtly.

"What? What the fuck are you saying?"

"Tony, Irina, she is dead. She is dead. I go to store, she is fine. I come
home, she is dead."

"Okay, I'm coming right over. Did you call the cops yet?"

"Yes, I call the 911--they say coroner come now."

"I'll be right there," he slammed the phone down. "God dammit." He yelled up
the stairs, "Meadow-I'll be back in a while. Stay here in case your mother
comes back," he ordered.

"Okay, Dad. Do you want me to call A.J.--tell him to come home?"

"Uh," Tony stalled, "Yeah, I guess so. But don't tell him about the note.
Don't tell him nothin'...why worry him?"

"Yeah, alright," Meadow called down.

* * * * * *

Tony's mind raced as he drove over to Rina's. "Dead," he thought, "what the
hell happened?" As he had done millions of times before, Tony cocked his gun
as he walked to the door. Svetlana opened the door, eyes puffy from crying,
cigarette in one hand, bottle of Stoli in the other, now half empty. "She's
in the tub," she mumbled. Tony put his gun away and closed the door behind
him.

When they reached the bathroom, Tony's head sunk. Irina's eyes were half
closed, her head slumped down towards her chest. Blood was everywhere. In her
hand was the ivory handled dagger Tony had given her last year. Her wrists
were slit-slit down to the bone. Svetlana wept again-desperately crying,
until there was a pounding on the front door. She wiped her eyes, took a drag
and had a drink, then hobbled to the door to let the paramedics and coroner
in.

They raced in, overwrought with a sense of purpose, of power. Pushing Tony
aside, they sighed as they gazed at the bloody mass below. There was nothing
they could do for her. As they worked together, loading Rina's lifeless body
onto the stretcher, the pure white stretcher sheet now stained with Russian
blood, Tony wandered into Rina's bedroom. He slowly walked around the room,
glancing at what his money had bought-the dresser, the bed, the pathetic
little knick-knacks...yeah, he was nothing but a money tree. Her bedside
table drawer was slightly ajar. Tony sat down on the bed, noticing a semen
stain on the comforter, and opened the drawer. He recognized Rina's copy of
Chicken Soup for the Soul, thumbed through it, then threw it to the floor.
Then he saw a picture frame, turned upside-down. As he turned it over and
looked at the picture of him and Rina on his boat, he felt no pain. Just like
when his mother died, he felt some relief. Now he didn't have to keep forking
over cash for her to live on; he didn't have to keep pushing her away,
telling her time and time again that they were over. He didn't love her.
She was a good kid, yeah, but she was just pussy. Good pussy...madonn', good
fuckin' pussy, but just pussy.

Once he left some cash with Svetlana for the cremation costs, he left,
feeling a little better. He would dedicate this time to Carmela, if she ever
came back to him. He'd prove to her that he loved her. He would be true to
her. He had a million ideas - a million romantic ways to show her how much
he loved her. Still, he couldn't believe that Rina was dead. "She actually
fuckin' killed herself...for me," he thought. A goomah wasn't supposed to
fall in love. She had to know she was just a piece of ass to him. It's not
like he'd ever leave his family for her or anything. But yes, he was
relieved. Life would be easier now. Again, his ringing cell phone interrupted
his thoughts. "Yeah," he answered.

"Dad. Mom's back. She just drove up," Meadow said with mild excitement.

"I'm on my way home now," he said as he hung up.

* * * * * *

When he drove up the driveway and saw Carmela's car, a rush of relief washed
over him, then he was flooded with anxiety. He knew they'd fight tonight and
he wasn't up for it...definitely not up for it after the night he'd had. He
popped a Prozac and walked into the house.

"Dad," Meadow rushed to hug him, "you're home."

"Where is she?" Tony asked, pushing Meadow away.

"Up in your room. She's weird, Dad. Not normal."

"Where's your brother?" Tony asked, not really paying attention to the
answer.

"He's still next door. He didn't want to come home, so I didn't tell him
anything."

"Alright, I'm going up to talk to her," Tony explained.

"I'm gonna go spend the night at Hunter's. Are you okay? You look sick."

"Mead, I'm fine. Just go." He gave her a fatherly kiss on the head. Meadow
gave him a smile, grabbed her backpack and walked out the door. Tony sighed,
and started up the stairs. He walked to the bedroom and peeked in the door.

Carmela was sitting on the foot of the bed, staring out the window. "Carm,"
he said as he entered the room. "Carm, where ya' been?"

Carmela stood up and turned to him as she spoke quietly, "Tony, I think I
figured out what our problem is. And I think I've fixed it." She reached up
to him and began to kiss him, lightly at first, with each kiss came a rising
intensity. "I love you Tony. You're the most important thing in my life. You
know that, right?"

"Yeah, sure, Carm. Where were you tonight?" Tony prodded.

"Shhh," she whispered, "We'll talk about that later. Let's just be together
now." She slowly unbuttoned his shirt and kissed down his hairy chest. Tony
started unbuttoning Carmela's blouse, but she stopped him. "I have something
special to put on. Wait out here. Lock the door, then get in bed," she
ordered as she walked to the bathroom. Tony did as he was told-locked the
door, stripped down to his boxers, and sat down on the bed.

After about ten minutes, the bathroom door slowly opened, and an angel
emerged. Carmela was wearing a beautiful black silk and lace negligee-his
gaze moved down to her breasts and he was instantly hard--hard as a rock.

"Oh, Carm. You're so beautiful."

He lay back on the bed and turned off the light. She pulled off Tony's boxers
and her soft lips curled around his cock. His moans excited her. She wanted
him, wanted him bad, and now he was all hers. As she moved against him,
sucking, licking, Tony coming closer and closer to climax, Tony felt
something weird rubbing against his legs. Something hairy, almost furry. It
wasn't like Carmela to not keep her legs waxed. He reached down to feel
whatever it was. Stockings? No, not stockings. He turned on the light and as
he climaxed, he realized what was on Carmela's legs...boots. White and black
pony boots...Rina's boots. Silenced by his ejaculation, his mind raced
wildly. Once he was done, he gasped and sat up.

"Carm, did you buy those boots today?"

Carmela sat up, wiped her mouth, and smiled coyly, "No, Tony. You know where
I got them." Tony's face froze. "You see, Tony, I realized today that we'd
never be happy with that little Russian goomah of yours around..."

"Carm," Tony interrupted, ready to reiterate his innocence and devotion to
her.

"No, Tony, let me speak. I wanted to believe that you were through with her,
but I know you too well. So...today, I found out where you keep her, and I
paid her a little visit. I didn't go over there to fight. But I straightened
everything out. Now I know for sure that you'll be true to me. Now you're
mine, Tony...just mine. And, Tony, I love my new pony boots," she said with
a smile.

FIN

    

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