How many times do they have to put Maya to bed in an episode, anyway? Nate's just finishing tucking his daughter in when his cell phone rings. He hurries to get out of the room and answer it before it wakes up Maya. It's Maggie, calling from her parked car somewhere. "Heeey," Nate Tribbianis. "I was just putting Maya to sleep." Maggie asks if Nate has seen Ruth. "Ummm, why do you ask?" Nate responds carefully. Maggie says she was just at George's apartment and Ruth is neither there nor answering the phone at the house. Nate says smoothly, "Huh. Well, I, uh." Maggie interrupts to ask Nate to do something for her, and she'll do the same for him. "Never lie to me. Okay?" And with that earnestly sincere request, Maggie, whom Nate barely knows, succeeds in getting him to roll over on the woman who gave birth to him. He says Ruth's at the house. "It's just a bunch of women," he says. "They're having a little party, but she's fine. If there's a problem with your dad, she didn't tell me about it." Maggie says okay. Nate, unable to shut up, adds, "You know, Brenda's over there too; it's just me and Maya here." He sort of cringes as soon as it's out of his mouth, like he didn't realize how that would sound until he got done saying it. I'd like to think that Nate's not that obvious when he's not full of tequila, and that he's just pointing out that there's nothing sinister about a girls' night out. But I'm not really convinced. Maggie doesn't say anything to that, but somehow manages to react anyway with an ambiguous head tilt. Around his mouthful of foot, Nate asks if Maggie is okay. "I'm fine. I'll see you soon, I hope," she says, and hangs up before he can respond. He'd probably end up saying something stupid like "We just embalmed someone who looked a lot like you when she was younger" anyway.
Ruth's gone up to the Claire to raid her daughter's weed stash. Claire stumps in in her high heels and pantyhose and periwinkle suit to find Ruth sitting on the bed and examining a little baggie. Ruth pleasantly invites Claire to change her clothes and join them downstairs. Claire suspiciously wonders why her room has been invaded by this strange woman with her mother's face. But she doesn't know who Susie Bright is either, so that's okay. Ruth says they all thought a little doob might "ease the pain of the loss." "I guess you found it," says Claire. Ruth asks the difference between the brown and the green weed. Claire thinks a moment, then takes the bag Ruth's holding and gives her one of those tiny little CSI-sized envelopes that in Alan Ball world means "the good stuff." And in the real world, for all I know. "Do you guys have papers?" Claire asks. "We were actually hoping for a bong," Ruth answers. Claire hands one over, asking, "You know you have to put water in that, right?" "Bettina knows," Ruth says. The uncomfortable (for Claire) moment stretches out, until Ruth gently says, "Oh, honey. I don't hate you." Claire softens some more. "I don't hate you either, Mom," she says. Ruth says that Claire's so much like herself. I don't know, I think Claire's a lot better at breaking up with people. Ruth says, "If you give up your dreams and it's my fault, I'll never forgive myself." Claire says Ruth was right about Claire needing to support herself, which she will "as soon as the grant comes through." Don't hold your breath, Claire. Any more than the pantyhose are already making you hold it, I mean. "Promise me you'll be who you want to be," Ruth says. Claire finishes melting and goes in for a hug, complete with an exchange of "I love you"s. "You look so corporate," Ruth says when they split. "You look so not corporate," Claire responds. Ruth waves the pot baggie and the bong and repeats her invitation. Claire says she just wants to take off her "hot dog suit" and take a bath and be naked. "If I put anything else on with a waistband, I'm just gonna cry." She goes into the bathroom to start undressing, and Ruth leaves the scene. As, sadly, so do we. Whether you want to read that as a sincere "sadly" or a sarcastic "sadly" is entirely up to you.