When rehearsals started, she gave you specific instructions to stay away. You’re not to even pick her up from rehearsal or go near the theater at all. “I want everything to be a surprise, Quinn. When you show up on opening night, I want you to be seeing everything for the first time.” You’re lying in bed, about to sleep, and you try and tickle her and distract her from the rules she’s laying down. Eventually you let her pin you down and you promise you’ll stay away. She kisses you and lets you feel her up a little bit. The next morning she kisses you and Beth goodbye and leaves the small studio apartment you share with your small family. But that’s what you are, a family. She has you and Beth. You gave her a family.
It’s getting down to the wire. Every night now you’re falling asleep at the kitchen table or on the couch waiting for her to come home from rehearsals and every night she comes home late, sneaks in to kiss Beth on the forehead and then pries the book you were reading from your hands and tucks a blanket around you where you’re sitting at the table or cuddles up on the tiny couch next to you. She’s so exhausted she falls asleep right away. But you get more and more anxious. You go to the studio everyday but you have so much nervous energy it takes loads of concentration to even mount the photos for your next show or develop any of the new ones. You can’t sit still.
So you decide to break the rules. Just a little. The theater door is open and you slip inside quietly, climbing the stairs to the balcony. You duck into the shadows that gather around the back rows and you’re about to sit before you hear her voice. She has a microphone tucked carefully into her costume and she’s singing but you can’t even hear the words. She walks across the stage slowly and the sound of her singing fills the entire theater. You can’t do anything but watch her. And in that moment you know that you were right. She didn’t belong in Lima. This is where she belongs. On the stage, singing the way she was born to. She finishes the song and for a moment she looks up to the balcony and you know she catches a glimpse of you standing in the shadows. But she smiles. And you smile back.