Tony settled, the poker a formality, a beard, as no one would dare to do anything other than let him win, especially as he was still in such a bad mood about the state of his hands and shoulder, still damaged and painful, but pretty soon, in spite of himself he was drawn in and all his attention was fixed on the cards and the pot in front of him.
Seeing that Luca seemed to be deeply absorbed in his game, Max decided it was time to do her thing.
"I'm going to go powder my nose," Max remarked to the man who was attempting to chat her up, as she set her glass down. Hopping off her stool, she made her way to the ladies room.
Pulling a compact out of her purse, Max powdered her nose while she waited for a couple of women to vacate the room. Putting her compact away, Max checked her purse to make sure she had all her equipment, and updated Logan and Lex via the butterfly brooch microphone she wore, "'K, Luca's busy gettin' his game on, so I'm goin' in."
Closing her purse, she exited the bathroom, glancing around to make sure no one was looking her way, before casually slipping down the hallway. Using a couple of lock picks, Max entered Luca's office thirty seconds later, and went about planting the surveillance equipment.
Gabi watched the young woman leave, and then re emerge and head towards her husband's office.
She looked around for a second before sliding off the stool and following, coming to stand at the door of the office.
"You could've just used the key ya know, if you'd asked me." She said sardonically, eying the intruder
Max looked up, surprised to see Luca's wife standing in the doorway. She wondered how long the woman had been standing there - the plush carpet in the hallway had hushed the sound of Gabriella's footfalls, and the door had opened silently. Damn.
"Sorry, it was unlocked, and I needed to make a private phone call," Max replaced the phone receiver in its cradle. She was pretty sure her body would've blocked her trick with the lockpicks from view. She gave an apologetic smile, "I hope you don't mind."
As she spoke, Max reached for a pad of post-it notes and used the bugged pen, writing, 'Harbour Lights - Room 305F'. Picking up the post-it note, she waved it in the air as she casually dropped the bugged pen into the side pocket of Luca's briefcase.
Standing up, she started for the door, "I'll just get out of your office now..."
Tony Luca loomed large and previously unnoticed behind his wife.
"My office." He spoke slowly his voice slurred, but angry "And I have no idea what you women think you're doing in here!"
Gabi looked up and responded smoothly "Oh honey, you mean the D'Angelo's wedding list wasn't in here?" She looked at Max "See, I told you, we'd best be going."
She hustled into the office and slid an arm around Max's shoulders leading her past Luca, and smiling at him as she did so, not stopping 'til they reached the bar.
"Now are you going to tell me what you were really doing in there, or do I let him ask?"
"Like I said, I was using the phone," Max held up her post-it note for Luca's wife to see.
The woman may have covered for her with Luca, but without knowing why, there was no way Max was gonna risk telling Gabriella the truth, "I'm really sorry, but I got a 911 on my pager, and I didn't have any change for the phone."
Max tried to disengage from Gabi's grip gracefully, anxious to get out of the club. Getting caught in the act didn't exactly do wonders for her nerves, and she wanted to get out of there before someone recognized her, "I'd better get to the hospital, see my friend..."
Gabi raised a perfectly shaped eyebrow. "See, I've never had to take the 'phone apart to use it, and the only key to that office, is around my husband's neck, so please don't disgrace yourself any more."
Okay, so maybe the jig's up. Damn. Still, Gabriella here doesn't exactly seem anxious to tell hubby what she saw. Maybe it's time to try a different approach. Besides, the woman really oughta be told what her husband has been gettin' up to. Just not here.
Max met Gabi's eyes, looking toward the exit before meeting her eyes again, "Look, I really gotta go... I know it's a lot to ask, but I don't suppose you could give me a lift to the hospital?"
Gabi looked at the girl in front of her for a second, she knew a bluff when she saw one, after all she was married to the mob, but this, something about it, the oddness of it made her intriuged. She nodded slowly.
"Of course, my car's out front."
"Thanks," Max slung the strap of her purse over her shoulder, leading the way downstairs and out the front, walking directly to the passenger side door of the red fiat spider, that she knew from Logan's infopack was registered to Gabriella Luca, "You gotta nice ride, Gabriella. So, where are we going?"
There was no point playing games anymore, Gabriella clearly knew something was up, Max was just confirming it.
Gabriella gestured for Max to get in the car. "Up to you, anywhere Tony wouldn't think of looking for me. Do I get to know your name?"
Opening the door, Max climbed in, waiting until Gabi had climbed in and started the engine before answering.
"You can call me Max," She considered her options. They needed somewhere public enough so that Gabi didn't feel threatened, yet private enough that they could have a conversation without being overheard - at least not by anyone other than Lex and Logan.
"There's an all night diner I know, I'll give you directions..." It had occurred to her that she might not be the only one under surveillance. Anthony Luca was a control freak, and Gabriella seemed to be a trophy wife - for all she knew, there could be a bug or a tracker in Gabi's car.
"Does Tony always keep tabs on you?"
"He used to, now he figures I'm too scared of him to do anything wrong!" Gabi smiled sadly. "Mostly he's right, but not right now, I don't know why..."
Actually she was fairly sure she did know, the idiot sisters upcoming wedding, removed a large portion of the power Tony had over her, but not all of it.
"So, direct me."
"Go left," Max directed, not quite ready to trust that the car wasn't bugged, despite the fact that Gabriella didn't seem to think that it was.
"Yeah, he seems like a real charming guy," Max said with quiet sarcasm. She looked over at Gabriella sympathetically, "Somehow I'm gettin' the impression that leaving the bastard is outta the question. Take this turn comin' up on the right."