{"The Shadow of My Father" is pure fiction. As I am writing this story, I am above the age of 21. If you want a story with lots of sex, look elsewhere. This is a love story. Seeing, as it is a love story, sex is in there, but it is in realistic balance in the characters' lives.

Any similarity to any real events, names, or life events is purely accidental. If you are underage, (according to your state laws, a minor), if this literature is offensive to you or to anyone around your viewing area, or it is illegal for you to view such content where you are reading it, stop reading the story.

This story cannot be distributed in any way, shape or form without author's express written consent.}

Story Written by: J.P.G.

Edited By: Trevor

I have a home page for you to see what the characters look like or what the places look like. If you want to walk in their shoes, please go to: http://jacobmillertex.com/

Chapter 39

Being that it's Friday and his kids are due to fly in later in the afternoon, Governor Lopez decided to start his day off even earlier than normal. However that wasn't the only reason why he walked into his office at four in morning instead of five. All week he has been trying to get with President George W. Bush, but he has been a hard guy to get a meeting with since he has been on the campaign road fighting a battle that he never thought he was going to fight.

After days of trying, the Governor's secretary finally tied down a time for the two men to talk over the phone. Even though it was at four fifteen in the A.M., the Governor accepted the meeting. He needed to talk to him about several issues, but mainly he wanted to get with him about what had happened back home in El Paso with Beth and Dominic's cases.

Due to the state unable to retry them on the same charges that a judge in the El Paso District Court had handed down what was an unjust sentence. He had no other choice but to call upon his friend and ask for help on getting the Federal Government to step in and charge the two in order to get some justice for what they had done. Due to the carpet being pulled from beneath him, the Governor has no other choice than to accept the help that President Bush offered when the mess with Beth and Dominic started.

Nervously Governor Lopez waited by his phone for the call he has been waiting for all week to come in. The closer it got to four fifteen, the more nervous he got. Then when he it past the scheduled meeting time, he got more anxious than nervous. Just as he was about to pick up the phone to ask his secretary to place the call to the President, his secretary's voice came over the intercom letting him know the President was on line one.

Taking a couple of breaths to calm himself down, the Governor picked up the phone. The two men greeted each other and got through the small talk about the weather and family pretty quickly. Once they got through that part of the conversation, the Governor was about to go into the main issue on why he asked for the meeting, but President Bush took control of where the conversation was going to go. He moved it to a topic that had him worried and needed the governor's help on.

"I thought my reelection was in the bag, but man let me tell how wrong I was on that. There is no doubt in my mind that I'm going to be facing down Governor Bill Clinton in the general, which that alone is a huge task for me, but that's not the only one. He is pulling in the youth vote that I will never get. The guy is changing politics as we know it.

But that's not the only problem I'm facing right now. The independent party has gotten a lot of movement since Ross Perot threw his hat into the ring last February on Larry King Live. The guy has his own money to throw into this race making it even harder to get him out. On top of that there is a movement with his supporters on getting him on the ballot in all fifty states. I really don't know what to do or even think about that guy and William Clinton."

Daniel couldn't help but laugh when he heard the name Ross Perot. He had seen the short guy a couple of times and even talked to him once, but he never thought the guy could have turned a presidential election upside down like he has. Yes like the President said he has his own money to use. The guy is a billionaire, but he doesn't have the personality that many Americans look for in their Presidents. Simply put the guy doesn't look Presidential material

"Mr. President as far as Governor Clinton, I have never met the guy so I can't tell you what to do with him, but you're right he's the one you're going to face. Also you're right he has the `it' factor the youth likes which will bring the young vote into play. To be completely honest with you I don't know how you're going to be able to combat that. Just don't fall into the old Republican game book by going to your base. You need them yes, but they aren't enough to get you a second term. You need to find around five to six percent more votes somewhere else.

Now as far as Ross Perot the guy is going to play a factor in this race no matter how hard you and Clinton try to keep that from happening. Don't get caught trying to keep him from the race because you will surely lose. While he and his supporters do their thing, you do yours. The guy is here to stay and is going to pull votes from both you and the Democrat nominee. The only thing you need to do is try to make sure you don't bleed more votes than the Democrats."

"I agree with you on every point, but if I don't stop the bleeding that is going on right now in my campaign I have no chance come November. I will lose in double digits." Bush laughed. "And that damn commercial that keeps running of me in my last election. `Read my lips. No new taxes', that thing is killing me because Congress pushed through a tax increase that I had no other choice than to sign into law because they had the votes to overturn my veto."

"Because you have been in the public eye for decades, there is a lot that can be thrown at you. Trust me the statement they are killing you with right now is not going to be the worst thing they are going to use in this campaign." Daniel chuckled. "Look at who I'm talking to. Mr. President please excuse me you are more seasoned than me and it shouldn't me giving you advice."

"No please, don't apologize! I started talking about this in order to get your advice. There has never been a more popular Governor in your state or any other state in the history of this country. You have the highest approval rating than any governor in all age groups, which many thought was going to fall in time, but instead it went up. I need your advice to help me reach those voters that you said will get me over the finish line to a second term."

"Well I'm sure you have a room full of advisors giving you advice on what you should do at this point. They are more seasoned than me and because of that they are the ones I would be listening to." Daniel paused a minute to gather his thoughts. "But as I said already don't commit political suicide by going to your base. They are getting old and because of that they are getting less and less each year. No sir, you need to stick to your values, but at the same time reach out to the voters that feel they are being left behind by both parties. If you talk to them along with your base, you will have enough to win this race."

President Bush knew what Governor Lopez was saying was correct, but it was totally the opposite of what his advisors are telling him to do. They are directing him to do exactly what Daniel is telling him not to do. Go to the base and stay there because they will be enough to get him reelected, which he disagrees. Elections of the past that might be true, but this election with candidates on the other side like Bill Clinton and Ross Perot now in the race.

"I'll get my team on what you're saying." President Bush said with not a lot of confidence in his voice, telling Daniel that it wasn't going to happen. "Now enough time has been spent on me, let's move onto why you have asked for this meeting. How may I be of service to you? Ask and I will see if I can deliver on what you're asking."

"Well I don't know if you heard or not about what has been going on with Beth and Dominic Alvarez's cases since you have been busy with your campaign and stuff." Daniel started in on his rehearsed speech. "It hasn't gone well for the state at all. The cases were on track going where we wanted them to, but an outgoing judge sat in on a hearing and threw a wrench into it all."

Governor Lopez went into detail on what happened in the two cases. Every so often the President would stop the Governor and ask him questions, but for the most part he stayed quiet. He couldn't believe what he was hearing. He couldn't believe how one judge took his oath of office and threw it out of the window because he felt wronged. Something he has seen, but never thought would have happened in a case like the one Beth and Dominic were involved in.

"Now as you can see there isn't a thing we can do at this point. At least not until the case is reviewed and hopefully overturned on the grounds that the judge in question overstepped the mark on handing down their sentences. However to be truthful with you I don't think that's going to happen. Even though the judges that will be looking at the facts of the case may agree that he did overstep, they aren't about to throw out his decision for fear of the precedence it sets."

"No, no you are right on that. There is no way judges in the same courthouse will overturn a sentence on a fellow judge. Not as long as the sentence he handed down was within his right to do so. And by what you have told me he had." President Bush dropped off to deal with someone that walked into his office before getting back on the phone and continuing. "Now where was I? Oh yeah, your best course of action is to try and send it up the ladder to the appeals court. Try and get them to set aside the sentence and put it back in Judge Garcia's hands."

"Trust me sir that process has started, but we don't think the appeals court will even take the case because the judge that passed down the sentence was in his right to do so." Daniel had to step in, in order to get control of his speed. He was anxious and because of that he was speaking way to fast to the President. "As I was saying the judge had the right to hand down that sentence as the sitting judge in the matter. The only one we might be able to overturn on appeal is Dominic Alvarez's because he wasn't supposed to be in court that day."

President Bush felt for Governor Lopez more than he was letting on. He knows this case hits too close to home for his good friend and right now everything is falling apart on the case. Including what he is about to tell him. Something he doesn't want to say and more so to a man that has come a very close friend like Daniel, but he has no other choice.

"Governor I know you want the correct justice to be served on these two, but putting everything on hold like you have on running your state isn't the right way on going about it." That didn't sit too well with Daniel. He didn't think the man he has helped throughout the last couple of years would utter the words he is uttering. "You were elected by the majority of voters of Texas, not just the voters of your home town of El Paso. You need to let the local city government and judicial courts go through their process and live with the outcome."

"With all due respect sir you once offered to take this case into Federal Court when it suited your needs, but I see it doesn't suit them anymore." Daniel quickly responded. "And you wonder where all your supporters are now. No one will stick around and back a person that doesn't help them when they need help because it just doesn't help you accomplish what you want to accomplish."

"Hold on, hold on right there Governor Lopez." President Bush didn't like how Daniel responded to him. Not just the words, but the tone in which he was saying them. "You're right by me taking this on doesn't help at all. And you knowing that and asking me to do it was just wrong in so many ways. I'm fighting for my political survival here and I can't give those out there that want to take me down more ammunition to get the job done."

Daniel sat back in his seat as he breathed in and out. He knew if he didn't settle down he was going to say more things that he wouldn't be able to take back. Even though the things he wants to say needs to be said to President Bush, he will respect him and keep his opinion to himself. Something a man that he thought was his friend didn't do for him.

"President Bush, I understand you are fighting for your political survival, but landing on the wrong side of this issue will be another battle you don't want. The Republican Party is losing in the Gay Rights movement and it's gaining a lot of ground. California just passed its Gay Right's bill and trust me when I say they won't be the last ones to do so.

If you choose to sit back and stay silent on this issue and one of the ones that are running against you picks it up and sells it right to the public, you will lose even more voters. It's not just a case of a mother and uncle kidnapping their son and nephew, no sir it's a lot more than that. It's kidnapping, brainwashing, theft, false imprisonment, gay rights... the list goes on and on. You will look weak on crime if one of your opponents picks this up."

"I'm sorry you feel that way Governor Lopez, I really do, but I just can't get taken off of a message at this stage of the game. I just can't order the justice department to go in and take over a case that is in a district court and has been decided already. But feel free yourself to go to the justice department and plead your case. If they choose to take it up I won't stop them. If they ask me for an opinion I will tell them it's the right thing to do, but then step away from it. The best that I can do at this time and I really hope you understand that our friendship isn't affected by this."

Daniel didn't want what happened in El Paso with Beth and Dominic to destroy a friendship he built with the current President, but at the same time it seems that lately he's had to beg to get a meeting with his friend. In his mind that isn't a friend. A friend doesn't cut your legs off and then tries to blame the reason he did it on everything else under the sky, except the real reason.

"Mr. President with all due respect I'm tired of it all, seriously I am." Governor Lopez spoke in a low voice. "I thought I could depend on you to help out on a miscarriage of justice that a blind man can see, but you don't want to get involved for your own reasons which I understand. So I'm not going to keep you much longer because I know you are a busy man and I am as well. My family is coming into town later this afternoon so I need this time to actually get things done.

But before I let you go I would like to say one last thing. If the Republican Party doesn't wake up and wake up soon it will find itself on the outside looking in. It's no longer the party of Abraham Lincoln. We are no longer a party that leads and gets things done. We have become the party of nay sayers and standing in the way of the right things on getting done. At this very moment I'm embarrassed to call myself a Republican, but..." The President interrupted Daniel.

"So are you telling me that you are planning to switch parties at this moment? It seems..." Daniel wasn't about to let the President assume things about him or put words in his mouth. "I never said that and you know it. What I was saying is at this moment I'm embarrassed being part of this party, but I believe it can be saved from the likes of those that are controlling it today. It can be taken back to its greatness and I plan to be leading the charge."

"Governor Lopez I know you are new to the world of politics, but you can't rock the boat in which you decided to get on. Not if you plan on having another term in office that is. Also if you want things done from your agenda. If you don't fall in line the Republican Party elders will use its power to insure nothing of your agenda gets through and you have a very rough primary."

"What's new on any of that?" Daniel chuckled. "All the legislation I have passed so far has either been passed by the Democrats pushing it through or me dragging the Republican state house and senate members kicking and screaming to vote yes. So nothing as you can see would change if I rock the boat as you say. And as far as making me run in a primary I say bring it on. No one the party throws at me in the primary or the Democrats throw at me in the general can change the view of the voters in this state. They like the work I have done and trying to do so they will give me another term if I go out and ask for it. The power the elders of our party thinks they have is no longer there."

"I really wish things didn't end up this way. Please tell me what I can do to keep you on board with us so we look united. Not falling apart in the eyes of the entire country because I know if I lose your support I will have to fight for Texas. A state that is not in play and a state that I need to have in my corner if have any chance of winning a second a term."

"No Republican can win the White House without Texas. Just like no Democrat has won the White House without California if my memory is correct. With that said I have no plans to air out our disagreements in public or to anyone on my staff. This conversation is going to stay between you and me. So if it gets out it will be on your side, not mine. I promise you I will support you and do my best to deliver Texas for you, but I know I can't call upon you to help me when I need it."

President Bush was glad to hear his friend was going to help deliver Texas for him, but at the same time he felt bad that it looks like he lost a friend. He wanted badly to order the justice department to come in and charge Beth and Dominic, but he didn't want to be seen giving special treatment to the Governor. More so at that moment when he is in a fight for his life to get a second term.

"Governor I understand you are disappointed in my answer, but let me get through my campaign and get a second term. Once I get my second term I will order the justice department to charge those two with every charge in the book that will stick." Bush stopped all of a sudden leaving a few seconds of dead air between him and Daniel before continuing. "I need to ask you for a favor though before we hang up. I have been told by my advisors that Governor Clinton is going to be making a trip to Texas in the next day or so. He is going to call on you to meet with him in which he will ask you to throw your support behind him since you haven't really supported anyone just yet. I need you not only not to throw your support behind him, but also don't take the meeting."

Daniel couldn't believe that the President would turn him down on his request, but then follow it up with asking a favor of his own. "If Governor Clinton calls me I will talk with him. At this moment I can't promise that I won't take a meeting with him. All I can promise you is that I won't throw my support behind him just because he is a Democrat. If he was a Republican I would be seriously thinking about giving him my support."

Before President Bush could plead with the Governor, Daniel polity excused himself out of the call before hanging up. Bush was stunned on how the call went and had no idea what to expect from the Governor. Before the call he was certain that Daniel was in his corner, but now it is uncertain where his loyalties lie except for his family and friends.

Meanwhile back in El Paso the day was going by fast at times. Since it was their last day of school before Spring Break, the teachers didn't have much on their lesson plans except to watch a movie or just letting their students have a free period. That made the day less boring, but at times it dragged on. By the time lunch rolled around, Josh was bored out of his mind. At that point all he wanted was for the day to be over and for him and his friends to be on their way to Austin already.

The afternoon classes were not much different than the morning classes. More movies and free periods, driving Josh up the wall. Taking advantage of the free time he was given, Josh went over the songs in his mind that he was going to perform in Dallas. By the time six period rolled around, Josh thought so much about the concert he had changed the arrangements around six times. When the final bell rang ending the school day, Josh had gone back to the arrangements that he decided on days before by him and his band.

Happy that the day finally was over, Josh quickly made his way to his locker with Cesar right at his side. Half of what Cesar was saying Josh didn't catch, but it didn't matter to the boys. They were happy that school was out and they had a week off that they weren't going to be spending around the house bored to death playing the same old video games or in front of the T.V. They are anxious to get on the road and see parts of the country they have never seen before

Neither of them grabbed anything from their lockers when they got them open. They threw in their books and notebooks before closing them and heading out. Unlike the higher classmen, they had no homework to do over Spring Break. Their teachers were cool about not giving them any, which they all loved, but Josh more than the others since he knew he wouldn't have time to get to it once the tour was on its way. It was going to be nonstop from beginning to end for him.

Knowing that they were on a tight schedule, Josh and Cesar pretty much ran from their lockers to the SUV. They were the last to arrive, but once they were in, the SUV headed to the airport where Barbara and their younger brother and sister were waiting for them. The Lopez family was flying out a day before the others because they were going to be spending the night with their father in Austin at the Governor's Mansion. Then head to Dallas the next day as a family. The rest of the clan is going to fly out the next afternoon to Dallas and head straight to the concert.

During the ride to the airport, the Lopez boys were all over the place. None of them were able to settle down because they were all too anxious about the upcoming week. Each of them are not only going to have a friend or two along with them, but they are going to have their girlfriends as well. It took a lot of persuading to get their father to say yes, but they wore him down eventually or did they.

Daniel wasn't a stupid man. He remembered being a teenager and the hormones that come with being a teenager. He had his kids think that they had won, but they didn't. At the end he made it look like he bent on letting his older boys and Brandon bring their girlfriends along, but as soon as he said yes and got off the phone with them he got on the phone with their security detail. He made it clear to them under no circumstances that his boys were to be left alone for a long period of time behind closed doors with their girlfriends without being checked on.

Still the Lopez boys thought they got one over on dear old dad and they talked about that the whole way to the airport. Josh and Cesar were the only two not entangled in that conversation. They were in their own little world talking about what they were going to do when Josh gets free time. Both of them hoped he will get enough free time in each city so they could sneak away and be together touring the different places and of course amusement parks in each city.

When they arrived at the airport, they thought they were going to get down and go through the regular gates, but they didn't. The SUV drove to an airstrip away from the others where there was a chartered plane waiting for them. Barbara, Isaac and his boyfriend and the twins were already on the plane. As soon as the boys got on board and took their seats, the plane made its way to the runway and was given the all clear to take off. It didn't take long after the plane leveled off and got into its cruising altitude that Josh and Cesar had fallen asleep and the other boys shortly later.

Back in Austin, Daniel was clearing his desk to head out to meet his family at the airport when his secretary informed him that he had a call. At first he told her to tell whoever it was that he was not in the office and to call back on Monday, but that changed when he was told who it was. On his way back to his desk, Daniel Sr. tossed his briefcase on the couch.

As he sat down he picked up the phone and greeted Governor Clinton. "Good afternoon Governor, how are you." Clinton quickly responded fine and threw the same question right back. "I'm doing great thank you for asking. You are lucky that you caught me when you did. If you would have called a few minutes later you wouldn't have got me. So what do I owe this pleasure?"

"Governor Lopez I'm no fool on where you allegiance is when it comes to who you're going to come out supporting. I pretty much have my party nomination wrapped up. Next month the New York primary is going to be held given me the needed delegates to get my parties nomination. It was a bitter primary, but it will soon be over and I'm looking forward to the general where I will be facing President Bush who I know is your friend.

The reason I started out with that is to let you know I won't ask you for something I won't get like my senior staff want me to ask. Even though I won Texas in the primary, I won't win it in the general. Texas is without a doubt in President's Bush's corner, but I won't ignore it. I will be visiting your state a lot and I would like to make my first visit tomorrow if that is possible."

"I don't see why not." Daniel lost for words by the way Governor Clinton was approaching the whole thing about visiting his state. It's not like he needs permission from him to campaign in the state Texas, even though he is the governor. "Governor you don't need permission from me to campaign in the state I'm humbled to be the governor of. You can campaign here as much and as long as you want. If you want to spend every day here of the general, its fine with me."

Both of the men laughed. "No, no I don't plan to do that. Not only will my wife kill me, but my staff and the Democratic Party will kill me as well." Clinton said between laughs. "I guess I'm not wording my request right. I understand that your son Josh is going to have his first concert tomorrow evening in Dallas. I would like to attend that concert if that's alright with you?"

Thrown a little by the request, it took a few seconds before Daniel responded. "Anyone that can pay for a ticket for the concert is more than welcome to be there, but if you haven't bought a ticket yet I don't think you will have any luck on getting one now."

"That is why I'm calling you. Hillary and I aren't country fans, but we have heard the way your son sings and we like it. He has a crossover effect to other music genres that not many other country singers have. Plus my daughter likes him. She knows he's gay, but still fantasies on one day them becoming boyfriend, girlfriend." Once again both of them chuckled. "Anyway as I was saying we have tried to get tickets to the concert but as you said they're sold out. I was hoping that maybe your family or your son's manager held back a couple of tickets."

"I'm sorry, but my family and I don't have any extra tickets, but as far as my sons manager, I can't answer for him. If you want I can give you his number so you can talk with him about the tickets. And if he does have..." Daniel suddenly remembered that he did have Evan hold back several tickets for him that he had hoped to give to President Bush and his wife, but they didn't get a chance to talk about Josh's concert. "I'm sorry, I'm lying to you! I just remembered that I do have tickets that I can give you for you, Hillary and your daughter."

Clinton tried to jump in to thank Daniel, but he stopped him before he could. "But I have to make it clear this is my son's day, not mine. There will be no politics at this concert. If you turn this event into campaign stop or a photo shoot I will make it my life mission to do whatever I can to hurt your chances on getting the presidency. My kids and my wife mean the world to me and tomorrow is all about my son Josh and only him, okay?"

"Of course!" Clinton quickly responded. "There is no way I will take an event like tomorrow and turn it into a campaign stop. No one on the staff knows that my family and I want to attend this concert. If you get us tickets I won't let them know until the last minute. Put that aside, like you I have a daughter that I don't want to be forced into a world that I chose to be in. So there is no way I plan to do what I don't want happening to my daughter to another father and mother."

"I'm a man that trusts the word of a person until that person proves me otherwise. So I'll take your word on this matter and have the tickets waiting for you as soon as you arrive. Just let me know when you plan to fly in so I can have someone waiting for you with the tickets. If you don't get the tickets at the airport it will be a lot harder trying to get them to you at the stadium."

"You got it!" Clinton opened his day planner. "My family and I will fly out of here sometime in the afternoon and should arrive an hour or so before the concert. Give me a couple of hours to get you the exact time." Daniel agreed. "Thanks Governor Lopez for this. I know you are going out on a limb on helping me get tickets to your son's sold out concert."

"Not a problem Governor Clinton, not a problem at all. I had a few extra tickets that I had put aside for some friends that informed me at the last minute they couldn't make it. Plus it's better that you and your family use them than for them to go to waste and there are no open seats by my family and friends as well. You know the press as well as I do and they will not report how good the concert was. Instead they will report that my son didn't sell it out and show the empty seats by me, my family and friends over and over again."

"That's very true. The press only reports the negative every chance they get, never the positive with people like us. It's unfair to our family and those close to us, but that's the way it is." Both of the guys chuckled. "With the main reason I called resolved I was wondering if I could take a few more minutes of your time on something else. I promise it will be just a few more minutes."

Daniel was reluctant on giving Clinton the few more minutes he wants because he knew what the subject was going to be about, but out of respect to the man he gave him the time. "I know you are going to go out and do some campaigning for President Bush around your state, but I was wondering if you have plans on leaving your state. You are very popular all over the United States and there is no doubt in my mind if President Bush wasn't running for reelection you would have your parties ticket and running against me in the general."

"Even if President Bush wasn't running for reelection I wouldn't be running for the highest office in the land. I'm happy right where I am serving the great people of Texas. But that doesn't mean I'm not going to run for that office in the future. I have thought about it, but I have promised the citizens of my state that I will serve as their Governor and as long as they keep electing me as their Governor I will stay right where I am.

With that said the answer to your question is no. I have too much work to do here in Texas right now that I barely was able to put aside the time that I did to campaign in my own state on behalf of the President. So don't worry about me getting involved in other states in the general election. Even if President Bush, his staff or the Republican Party asks me to campaign outside of my state on his behalf, I will say no. There is just no way will I leave my state with what has happened in the past when I have left Austin for a little R and R."

Governor Clinton didn't need Governor Lopez to go into detail on what he meant. He heard about what happened in his state both times he left Austin for more than a day or so. The first when he went to do his reserve time and just recently when he went home to attend a wedding. His own party has tried several times to take him out, which confuses him why Daniel hasn't left his party on his own after all of what they have attempted from his bills to unseating him.

"I certainly understand what you are saying Governor Lopez and thank you for being blunt with me. It's just taking on a sitting President is hard enough and to add a very popular Governor like yourself would make my job impossible. I'm sure that you know it and I'm just wasting my breath and our time, but I'm going to say this anyway. If you would run there is no one out there, including myself that can beat you for the highest office in the land."

"Thank you for the kind words, but I seriously doubt that. Whenever someone thinks they are unbeatable become their worst nightmare. Everyone no matter who they are or what they have accomplished in their lives can be beaten by another in the world of politics. Our world we chose to make our lives in Governor Clinton is the most unpredictable world out there."

Clinton agreed with Daniel on that point before switching the subject back to his son's concert the next day. They talked a little be longer about the concert before Daniel had no other choice but to let Clinton go if he wanted to make to the airport in time to meet up with his family. The two Governors got off the phone with an agreement to not ever let politics get into their way in what looks like a developing friendship they both would like to happen.

While Daniel Sr. was racing off to the airport to meet up with his family, back in El Paso Eric and Bernice were heading to their final shift at Taco Bell. They weren't going to work a shift on their last couple of days before their vacation, but decided to in order to get more money to spend on their holiday. Plus when the stores assistant manager asked them, or should it be said begged them to work a shift that day they couldn't say no.

Without objection or hesitation Father Gomez dropped what he was doing to take Bernice and Eric to work. He did it not only because it was what he has done ever since they started working, but as well to spend time with the two young adults. Time was going way too fast for him. His little girl is no longer his little girl but now a young adult bringing home her own money. In his mind she has grown up way too fast. All he wanted was to keep her safe and if at all possible for her to stay his little girl just bit longer. Not a whole lot longer, just a bit longer.

The whole ride to Taco Bell all Bernice and Eric could talk about was their plans on what they are going to do over Spring Break. It made Father Gomez feel proud they had no problem talking about their plans with him in the car. They have got at ease with him around and not afraid to talk in front of him or to him about what is going on in their lives. He thought he lost that when he put his foot down with Bernice the night she came home late from her date with Eric, but she took her punishment like a champ and in return their relationship got stronger.

Being that they were in the same small car, Father Gomez heard the back and forth between Bernice and Eric. He tried to not listen to give them respect, but there was nothing he could do. He heard almost every word they said and really didn't take offense to most of it. The few things that they said they wanted to do on their Spring Break wasn't going to happen, hopefully.

Even though he wasn't going to be one of the chaperons on the trip, he trusted those that were and knew they will keep all the kids in line. Yes they will be allowed to have fun, but not to the extent that it could get one of them hurt, or worse, in trouble. What Bernice and Eric were talking about didn't get near either of those two outcomes, or really anything in between, but it was still in the eyes of Father Gomez a no, no and he knows it will not happen.

As always the drive to the Taco Bell was too short for Father Gomez, but not for Bernice and Eric. They jumped out of the car and thanked Father Gomez as they always do when they arrive. And as always Father Gomez wouldn't drive off until he saw the two kids had walked into the building safe and sound. He would sit there in the parking lot watching the two love birds holding each other's hands as they made their way across the small parking lot and into the building.

At the same time as Father Gomez was pulling out of the parking lot heading home, a few blocks down Patrick had stopped in to visit with his mother. He has had a weird feeling that something wasn't right with her since the passing of his father, but ignored it at first. However as the days went by, the feelings got even stronger that Patrick needed to make sure his mother was alright.

When he arrived at his old home, he had no idea if he should just walk in or knock on the door. After a few minutes standing there on the sidewalk going back and forth, he decided to knock on the door since he no longer lived there. Slowly he made his way up the sidewalk leading to the front door. When he got to it, he slowly reached out and tapped a couple of times. Not getting a response, he knocked again, but this time harder. Still after a few minutes of waiting and knocking a third time even harder, Patrick started to get a little worried.

Taking a few steps back and really looking at the house he realized that a lot has changed. The grass was pretty much dried up and died. His mother's garden was nothing more than weeds, which got him worried but that wasn't the thing that shot him into action. When he looked over at the driveway and saw the car had been wrecked he knew his worries were not for nothing.

Quickly he made his to his parent's room window and tried to look in, but couldn't see a thing with the blinds closed. Not wasting any time trying to force himself to see what he couldn't, he ran around the house and looked into the kitchen window. There he saw a mess. It looked like a tornado had gone through the place. Dishes piled up in the sink, trash all over the floor and counters, but that wasn't the worse thing he saw. The trash was mostly beer cans and empty bottles of different kinds of liqueur all over the kitchen.

He tried the back door, but it was locked. Getting worried, Patrick ran around the house trying every window to see if he could see anything or find one unlocked in order to get into the house. When he made it back to the front and wasn't able to find another window open in order for him to look into to see his mother or unlocked to get into the house, he was worried.

At that point he started pacing back and forth in the front yard. It wasn't until he stepped back and settled down that he was able to clear head and remember about the false rock in the garden. As he ran back to the now garden of weeds, he kept saying over and over to himself `please, please be there', but it wasn't. He fell to his knees pulling out every weed he got his hands on. After clearing almost a quarter of the garden he found what he was looking for.

Falling back on his butt, Patrick opened the false rock and a key fell out. Breathing in a sigh of relief, he got up from the ground and walked back to the front door. Slowly he slid the key into the bolt lock and turned it. Once he turned it all the way, he turned it back in order to get the key out. Just as slow as he did the bolt lock, Patrick stuck the key into the bottom lock and turned it. As soon as he had the door unlocked, he slowly turned the knob and opened the door. Very slowly he started to crack the door open and once he opened it enough to stick his head in, he heard his mother's voice right before he heard a gun go off.

Back in Austin Daniel Sr. barely drove up to the airstrip as the plane he chartered to bring his family to Austin was coming to a complete stop. He didn't get out of the limousine until the plane had come to a complete stop and the stairs were pulled up to the door that his family were going to use to exit the plane. When he saw the door opening, he got out of the car and stood at the bottom of the staircase to greet them.

The first to step out of the plane was his brother Isaac with his boyfriend Troy. They waved at Daniel as they made their way down the staircase. As soon as they got to the bottom, they hugged each other until Rose pushed her way in to hug her son, which didn't last long. The Lopez boys had made their way down and couldn't wait to see their father. The last of the family to step off the plane and get to the bottom of the staircase was Barbara who had the twins in her arms.

Daniel Sr. took Abraham from Barbara as he leaned in and gave his daughter Victoria a kiss and then his wife. Once all of them had a chance to greet him, and Daniel to greet all his family, they made their way to the limousine talking all at once. Daniel didn't stop it because he missed the chaos that comes from having his family around. It was like that the whole way to the Governor's Mansion. Everyone trying to tell Daniel what was going on in their lives at the moment.

"Okay, okay guys I want to hear all about what is going on in each of your lives, but we need to decide rather or not if we are going to eat in or go out." In seconds the limousine went dead quiet after Daniel Sr. presented the question. He waited for a response from them, but when none of them said a word, he took it upon himself to answer his own question.

"Since we only have this evening together I say we eat at the mansion. That way I could hear all about what is going in in each of your lives." All at once they all agreed. "Good then it's settled we're going to have a cookout at the mansion as a family." Daniel looked over at his mother and wife. "You ladies relax and don't lift a finger tonight. I will be doing all the cooking."

He didn't get any objection from his mother or wife. They were exhausted from the trip and all they wanted was to put their feet up. When Daniel said they were going to stay in, the first thing that came to each of their minds was that they were going to have to cook, but now they see how wrong they were. Daniel volunteered to do it all and they were going to take advantage of it.

As soon as they got to the mansion, the boys got out of the limousine and went straight up to their rooms. Even though this wasn't their home and eventually they knew another family was going to be living in the house, they still considered it theirs for the time being. Because of that, they put claim to the rooms they first chose as their permanent rooms while their father was Governor.

While the boys were settling in, Daniel and Barbara took the twins up to their rooms to change their diapers and clothes. Once they had them changed, Daniel made his way to set up the grill and then the kitchen to get meat that he was going to cook. Just as he pulled out steaks, Isaac and Troy walked in and volunteered to help in any way they could.

With a big smile on his face, Daniel asked Troy to help put together the salad and potato salad while he and his older brother started the grill. With no objections from anyone, Daniel and Isaac made their way to the back yard to get to work on getting the grill going. It didn't take long for their conversation to move into what was going on with the family back home.

"Look little brother they miss you a lot, but they understand why you have to be here and they have to be there. They are very proud of you on what you are doing." Isaac said with confidence in his voice. "Every night they turn on the T.V. in hopes to see you on. When they don't see you, they get a little sad yeah, but it doesn't take them long to remember that they aren't going to see you on television every single night. No matter how much they wish they could."

"That's just it Isaac! I mean I never wanted my kids to grow up with an absentee father. Our dad worked two to three jobs and when he was home he wasn't home. He was either too tired to do anything with us or sitting in front of the T.V. watching a soccer game with a beer in his hand. I know he did what he needed to do in order to keep us fed and clothed. I don't hate him for how he was with us when we were growing up. In fact it's totally the opposite on how I feel about him. I respected our father and looked up to him.

But I swore to myself a long time ago that I wasn't going to be like our dad. That was one of the reasons I got out of the military because I wasn't home more than half of the time. I was somewhere in the world fighting a war trying to grow in rank. And when I was home I was like dad to a point. I was too tired to spend time with the boys. All I wanted to do was rest before going out again. When I saw I was getting more and more like dad, I looked for a way out."

"And you found your way out." Isaac interrupted. "You stepped away from a life you loved into a life you had no idea about. The only thing you knew for sure was that the chances of you being killed were a lot slimmer than while you were in the military. On top of that, you're home a lot more than you were while you were in the military. So don't stand there and say you're like our father, God rest his soul because your not. You changed your life in order to be with your boys and wife, something dad couldn't do because he didn't have what you have."

The more Daniel thought about what his older brother was saying, the more he agreed with him. Their father was a great man in his eyes. He killed himself working two to three jobs so they could have everything they wanted and have more doors open for them that he didn't have in his life. If it wasn't for his father doing what he did he might be where some of his friends that he grew up with are right now. Down on their luck unable to make ends meet.

Before they were able to finish their conversation they were having, Daniel Jr. and Carlos had made their way out. Daniel Sr. was the first to see his boys and quickly changed the subject, confusing his older brother at first. When Isaac saw the boys he caught on why the subject was changed and went along with it. Neither of the boys were any the wiser.

Back upstairs Josh and Cesar were settling in. They didn't bother to unpack anything since they were only going to be there for one night, but they did set up their suitcases so they could get to their stuff without a problem. Once they had everything they wanted pulled out, they started their way down to join the others. However when they got to the door, Josh blocked it.

"We haven't really had any real alone time together for a while and I've hated that." Josh whispered as he leaned against the door. "So I think whenever we have a chance to steal a few minutes being alone like now, we should." Cesar had a grin ear to ear. "Trust me, whenever the food is ready they'll call us. So don't you worry."

Cesar pulled Josh away from the door before he was able to complete what he was saying. Wrapping his arms around him, Cesar walked Josh over to the bed and together they fell onto the mattress. Side by side they gazed into each other's eyes not saying a word. They just lay there looking at each other as if it was the first time they'd laid beside each other.

Slowly Cesar reached out to Josh's upper arm. Once his index finger touched skin, he slowly moved down causing every hair on Josh's arm to stand up. Just as Cesar reached Josh's wrist, Josh reached out and started to do the same thing. They examined each other's arms as if they'd never done so before. Once they touched every inch of skin on each other's arm, they started making their way up to the neck and then the face, examining every inch.

"You know I love every inch of you, but there is one thing I love the most." Cesar whispered as he circled around Josh's right eye. "Your hazel green eyes! The very first thing I noticed about you was your beautiful eyes that you don't see that often in Hispanics." Both of the boys laughed. "But man am I glad you have those beautiful hazel green eyes."

"I don't know where they came from to tell you the truth. None of my brothers have that color eyes or my mother. My dad has green eyes so I think if anyone I would have got my color eyes from him." Cesar nodded his head. "Sometimes though I feel out of place with my colored eyes since none of my brothers have them."

"Don't you ever think that, because I just love them!" Cesar looked Josh up and down a couple of times before making eye contact with him again with an evil grin on his face. "Well your eyes is just one of many things that I love about you. From head to toe I love everything about you and those awesome hazel green eyes are just the icing on the cake." Cesar chuckled as he looked away from Josh for a few seconds. As he turned back his facial expression got serious. "There isn't a doubt in my mind one of the things all the girls and gay guys like about you are those eyes."

For the first time Cesar got Josh to blush, exactly what he was aiming for. As soon as he got that he moved on. Once again they didn't talk at all. They just stared at each other as they examined every inch of each other's body. Even the areas that still had clothes on, they examined the form. Just as things started to heat up they heard a light knock on the door.

At the same time they looked over at the door and when they saw the doorknob turning, they quickly jumped off the bed. Just as they made it their feet, Barbara walked in. For the second time in less than a month she couldn't believe she walked in on one of the boys getting intimate with their significant other. She quickly turned around and walked out of the room. Before closing the door all the way she informed the boys that it was time for dinner.

As Josh and Cesar gathered themselves together, back in El Paso, Patrick was on his stomach on the floor. The bullet that his mother shot at him barely missed him, but that wasn't the thing on Patrick's mind at the time. His mother still hadn't realized it was him that walked in. She was in a drunken state trying to get to her feet. In seconds she was up on her feet, wobbling her way towards Patrick swinging the gun back and forth.

Being that the state that his mother was in, Patrick had no doubt that she couldn't hit the side of a barn if it was a foot in front of her. Because of that, he worried more for her safety than his. She could accidently discharge the gun and it could go through the wall or a window and hit someone walking by. Or worse she could trip over the trash, empty beer cans and bottles on the floor and the gun would accidently go off and hit her as she went down.

Knowing time was a factor, Patrick had to move fast. Getting to his knees he crawled towards his mother as quickly as he could using the walls or pieces of furniture for a shield along the way. Once he was just a couple feet away from her, he stopped and ducked behind the chair. He waited for her to pass him before he leaped out and wrapped his arms around her. Stunned by what was going on around her, Patrick's mother dropped the gun at her feet and started throwing up.

Not wanting her to choke on her own vomit, Patrick held her up as he pointed her head towards the floor where there was a lot of garbage. It took a few minutes, but she eventually did stop throwing up and fell completely against her son. At that moment she realized it was Patrick that she had shot at, causing her to break down in tears.

In her drunken state Lucia tried to check out her son to see if she had hit him, but she was so far gone she only fumbled around. Patrick tried to tell her that he was okay, but she either didn't hear him or understand him, but either way she didn't stop trying to care for him. So after trying several times to get his mother to stop, Patrick gave up and let her check for herself.

While she was checking to see if she had hit her son, Patrick kicked the gun away from them as far as he could. Once he felt the gun was far away enough that his mother couldn't get to it, he picked her up as he made his way onto his own feet. Lucia didn't fight her son as he picked her up. She wrapped her arms around his neck as he carried her to her bedroom.

Just like the rest of the house, Lucia's bedroom was a mess. Patrick did the best that he could to clean off a corner of the bed while still holding his mother. Once he had a spot clear, he put down his mother and started to clear off the rest of the bed. He barely had it cleared when his mother fell back. Halfway on and halfway off, Patrick gently pulled her to the top of the bed before taking off her shoes and socks and then pulling the only clean sheet on the bed over her.

Worried for his mother, Patrick didn't leave her side for almost an hour. He sat there on the floor next to the bed watching her chest go up and down. It took going back and forth with himself weighing the pros and cons of leaving her alone before he made the decision to leave. However, he didn't leave the house, he just left her room.

While Lucia slept, Patrick cleaned up the entire house. Expecting to hear a knock on the door any minute as he cleaned, he was worried. He thought for sure one or more of the neighbors heard the gun shot and called the police. However, when they hadn't come after several hours, he settled down figuring that either the gunshot wasn't that loud or the neighbors didn't care. Either way he was thankful because he knew if the police did show up they would have seen the state she was in, taken her to jail and he had no idea how he would have got her out.

Every fifteen or so minutes Patrick would pop his head in to check on his mother. Each time there wasn't a real big change with her except her moving from one side to another. The one time he checked up on her and found her on her back, he quickly moved her back to her side. He didn't want her to choke on her own vomit if she started to throw up in her sleep.

It took close to four hours for Patrick to clean up the house, do the dishes and clean the best as he could before he sat down and rested. He looked around and was surprised how well he did, but the good feeling didn't last. Reality quickly set back in. He jumped to his feet and went to check on his mother. Seeing that she was still out of it, he walked back to the living room and made his first phone call to Father Gomez to ask him for help.

Twenty minutes later there was a knock on the door, and Patrick knew who it was. He walked over to the door and let Father Gomez in. As he told his tale of what he found when he got to the house, tears started to roll down his face. When the tears turned into a full out flood of sobs, Father Gomez pulled Patrick into him and held him until he stopped crying and shaking.

"Look Patrick no one your age should have to take care of their parents" Father began to speak in a low voice as he looked into Patrick's eyes. "No one your age should have had to have gone through what you went through here today. I wish you'd called me the minute you got here and knew that something was wrong so I could have protected you from all this." Patrick looked at Father Gomez with a confused look on his face. "Hey don't get me wrong on what I just said. I'm glad that you trust me and did call me instead of trying to do this all on your own."

Father Gomez and Patrick started their way to Lucia's bedroom. "I have been checking on my mother every fifteen or so minutes to make sure that she was okay and that she hadn't moved to her back or stomach. By what I have seen on television and heard from others that people could die if they fell asleep on their stomach or back the way my mother is right now."

"Yes that's true! They are so out of it they don't know where they are so when they start to vomit they don't do what they normally would do if they weren't drunk or on drugs. They would lay there in their own vomit. Or sometimes they wouldn't even get it completely out of their mouths. In return they would choke and not be able to do the right thing like get up that results in death."

Patrick shook his head as he stepped into his mother's room before stepping to the side so Father Gomez could walk in and take a look at his mother. Even though he didn't get close to Lucia, Father Gomez not only could see that she was passed out, but could smell the liquor. He turned and walked out of the room taking Patrick with him to the living room.

"You didn't go up to her to see how she was doing!" Patrick said as he pulled out a seat from the living room table and sat down. "Please take a look at her and see if she is doing alright!" Tears started to roll down Patrick's cheek again. "I need you to go back in there and check on mother to make sure she is alright. I know she isn't a very good mother, but I can't lose her. I just can't!"

Father Gomez walked up to Patrick and placed his right hand on Patrick's shoulder. "I didn't need to walk up to the bed to see what condition your mother is in. By the smell of the room and the way she was laying and breathing I could see that she is passed out. Really anyone could see and smell it a mile away. So out of respect to your mother, I kept my distance."

The father walked around to front of Patrick and fell to his knees. He grabbed a hold of Patrick's hands and said a little prayer before speaking again. "I know she is your mother and you feel it falls on your shoulders now to take care of her since your father is no longer here, but son it's not your responsibility. This might sound mean or hard to hear but I'm going to say it anyway. It's her responsibility to take care of you no matter what life throws at you. Yes she lost her husband as you, your brother and sister lost a father, but that doesn't give her permission to self-destruct.

You were a good son here this evening by picking her up, cleaning up, putting her to bed and cleaning the house, but no more. You need to go off and be a teenager! Have fun with your friends over Spring Break like you have planned. Leave your mother to me to get her cleaned up and well again. I promise you when you return she will be back on the right track."

Patrick was torn on what he should do about his mother. One part of him is telling him to cancel his Spring Break plans and be there for his mother. Be a son who takes care of their parents when they are down. Be a son his mother can depend on that will take care of her whenever she's sick or when she gets old and can no longer take care of herself anymore.

However, the other side of him is telling him to not cancel his plans. His mother turned a blind eye on what was going on in the house while he lived there. He knows these feelings are wrong. He knows he needs to be the better person than her and forgive and help her while she is down, but he can't. He just can't forget all the crap he, his brother and sister went through in this house while they were growing up. She was there when most of it happened and when she wasn't, she heard about it, but didn't lift a finger to stop their father from doing it again and again to them.

"Son you know I'm right here. Let me make a few calls to get your mother into a rehab program that will help her a lot more than you ever could." With blurry eyes Patrick looked over at Father Gomez with a look that said only one thing. Are you out of your mind? "I know everything inside of your right now is telling you that I'm wrong. You can help you mother more than any program out there, but I'm sorry to tell you that you're wrong. Many have thought the same before you and have failed and many will think the same thing after you and will more than likely fail."

Father Gomez waited for a response or objection from Patrick and when he didn't get one he got up and walked over to the phone. It only took him a few minutes to make the calls he needed to make to get Lucia into a program that night. As he was making the arrangements and giving directions to the house, Patrick got up and walked into the bedroom to be with his mother until she was picked up.

While Patrick was sitting by his mother's side, back in Austin Josh couldn't get to sleep. Between being anxious about his first solo concert to all the noises he was hearing, he couldn't fall asleep if his life depended on it. Cesar however was a different story. He was dead to the world right beside Josh and Josh knew it. He tried several times to ever so lightly nudge him awake and didn't succeed on getting him to even turn over more so open his eyes to tell him to stop.

After trying several times, Josh gave up and just laid there on his side of the bed staring out into the darkness of their room. At times he thought he saw someone in their room and at other times he felt someone next to him. Each time one of those occurrences happened, Josh got closer and closer to Caleb. When he finally did fall to sleep, he was almost right on top of his boyfriend.

The next morning when Josh rejoined the living he didn't find Cesar at his side. The sun was glaring through the cracks of the curtains, making it harder for Josh to go back to sleep. Just as he dozed off for the second time, Cesar came busting through the doors yelling out Josh's name. When he didn't get any response from Josh, he jumped on the bed and didn't stop jumping until Josh showed he was still alive.

"Damn it I'm up, I'm up already!" Josh yelled as he threw a pillow at Cesar. "What is so damn important that you couldn't let me have a few more minutes sleep? I know it can't be time to go already because it feels like morning still. Plus the sun that is coming through the curtains hasn't warmed up the room like it does when it's the afternoon. So what is it?"

Cesar smiled down at Josh as he leaned down to steal a kiss. "You right on both things you just said." Cesar said as he gently kissed Josh on the lips. "Mom and dad asked me to get your lazy ass out of bed to have breakfast with the family. I tried to tell them you didn't get a lot of sleep last night since you were up all night scared out of your mind like a little girl."

Cesar had an evil grin on his face as he looked down at him. As Josh stared up at the evil grin that was staring him right in the face he couldn't believe what he heard. He thought that he didn't wake up Cesar when he tried to throughout the night. Now that he knows that he did, he couldn't believe that Cesar didn't sit with him until he had fallen asleep.

"Yeah I know it was mean of me not to let you know that you had woken me, but if anything really was out there and was about to hurt you I would have got up and stopped it!" That not only made Josh forget that he was angry, but put a smile on his face. "I might be a heavy sleeper, but I'm not that heavy that I didn't feel you jabbing my side as you whispered my name."

Josh started to laugh as he pulled Cesar into him. He kissed him once on the lips before they started to wrestle with each other. It went back and forth on who pinned who for several minutes on the bed before they landed up rolling onto the floor. When they hit the floor, they laid there at each other's sides laughing. They couldn't believe that they had actually fallen off the bed.

"We'd better get down there for breakfast before mom, dad or both of them send up the search party for us." Cesar said between laughs. "You know dad and his schedules. He likes to stay to them to the second and if we are off just a few seconds he gets a little anxious." The conversation quickly went from playful to serious. "So let's get down there and..."

As Josh was turning over to his side he pulled Cesar into for a kiss. Cutting him off from finishing off what he was saying. They held the kiss for a few seconds before Josh broke off as he jumped to his feet. He grabbed his clothes that he was going to wear up until the concert as he headed into the bathroom to wash up. It didn't take him long to rejoin Cesar in their room so they could head down for breakfast together.

The conversations during breakfast were all over the place at first. Everyone was trying to bid for their father's attention, and no one was really winning out. That was until Barbara joined in and said something that grabbed everyone's attention. The table went quiet and it was only her talking, which Daniel Sr. wished this one time didn't happen.

"Yes your mother is right I did that in high school, but haven't done it since." Daniel Sr. looked over at Josh. "Tonight and this entire week is about you son, not me. You're going to feel like you have gotten on a roller coaster ride that is going a hundred miles a seconds and at times you're going to want to get off. So I don't want you to think about anything except having fun out there on that stage. If you are having fun, your audience will be having fun."

Josh agreed with his father. "Now as far as what is going to happen tonight in Dallas all I'm going to say at this moment is that there is going to be a lot of surprises for you. I won't say anything more than that!" At the same time everyone at the table moaned. "They are going to be awesome as you guys say and one of them might even embarrass you, but at the end you will like them all."

That got Josh's attention. He asked several times what the surprises were before Barbara ushered them up to their rooms to grab their things so they could head to the airport. He didn't get an answer, which put Cesar in the line of fire. The whole time while they packed the few things they pulled out of their suitcases Cesar was asked over and over again what their father meant. He knew about one surprise, but not about any others. So when he told his boyfriend that he didn't know what their father was talking about, he wasn't completely lying to him.

Even though Josh knew that Cesar did know something he reluctantly dropped it, but made a mental note to pick up the conversation again in the car. However, he never got the chance. The entire ride to the airport Daniel Sr. was on the phone with Rich, Isaac was on another phone talking with Ivan and Barbara and Rose were busy with the twins. Not wanting to disturb the conversations that his father and uncle were in, Josh turned his attention to Cesar and they talked in whispers.

As the Lopez family boarded their aircraft and prepared to leave for Dallas, Josh and his brother's friends and girlfriends were doing the same thing in El Paso. Just like the day before, Isaac found it cheaper to charter an aircraft to get everyone to Dallas that were invited than it was to buy separate tickets for each of them on a domestic airline. Since Josh left all that up to Isaac and Barbara he had no idea how his friends were getting to Dallas, just they were going to be there.

The last to show was Patrick who held up the plane for a couple of minutes. None of them knew what had happened the night before, including Patrick's brother. So when he walked onto the plane they all teased him for over sleeping, which he took the jibes until everyone got tired of throwing them. However, there was one out of the group that didn't join in, Immanuel. He has got to know his boyfriend in such a short period of time. So when he saw how Patrick carried himself as he boarded the aircraft, he knew something was up. He didn't ask right away because he knew he had a couple of hours in the air to allow Patrick to open up on his own about what was going on.

Just a little less than an hour later in Arkansas the Clintons were getting on their aircraft to begin their journey to Dallas. Bill Clinton's daughter was very excited about the trip because it was her that wanted to see young Josh in concert. When she was told that the tickets were sold out, she couldn't believe it, but then when her father gave her the news that he was able to get his hands on some, she hasn't been able to come off cloud number nine.

As she sat in her seat with earphones on listening to Josh's first CD, her parents were across from her talking about what they could do while in Dallas, or Hillary was. From the moment that Bill told her that they were going to Dallas, she couldn't stop talking about how they could use this as a chance to pull votes away from the President and just maybe get the state of Texas in the general as they did in the primary. The plane ride was no different than the night before.

"Come on honey we are now in the driver's seat of this election. You know damn well you have the state of New York which wraps up the primary, giving you the ticket. Now you need to start looking ahead to the general and think about how you can win over votes everywhere you go. This trip to Dallas is a win, win in so many ways I don't even know where to begin."

Bill was tired of hearing his wife talk about what he should do when they arrive in Dallas, but hasn't really said anything about it. He felt he owed it to her to let her get involved in his election since she stood by him when the press began to report an extramarital affair with Gennifer Flowers that he had. She didn't hesitate for a minute before the New Hampshire Primary to come out standing at his side when they took to the air during a 60 Minutes interview. So he has been giving her a lot of input on his campaign since, which at that moment he is regretting.

"I do see where you are coming from on all this, but I promised Governor Lopez not to turn tonight into a political campaign stop or photo shoot. I agreed with him that tonight was about his son and only his son. So for just this one time in a very long time let's just go to a concert like a normal married couple with their daughter and have fun without thinking politics."

Hillary didn't like that one bit and Bill could see that in her face. "No I don't agree with the deal you made with Governor Lopez. If you go ahead with that deal and not at least turn tonight into a photo shoot with that very popular Governor, you are going to look weak. You two are going to not only be in the same arena at the same time, but sitting next to each other. This opportunity you can't waste and I will not let you waste it!" Hillary almost was yelling at that point.

Bill knew he had to let his wife say whatever was on her mind before he said a word or what should be a short conversation or argument could end up being a long one. "Don't you know I agree with you on every point you made." Bill softly spoke as he grabbed his wife's hand. "I honestly do agree with you, but I won't go back on my word. Not just because of it being his son's concert and it is the right thing to do, but as well what he threatened to do if I break my promise."

"What did he threaten you?" Hillary pulled her hand away. "What can that little man of a governor in a state that is backwards think he can do to you a man that is going to be the next President of United States? I tell you what he can do, nothing that's what!"

"You need to settle down before you get yourself sick." Bill spoke softly as he tried to move the conversation away from what they have been talking about, but Hillary wouldn't allow it. "Fine you want to know what he threatened me he would do if I break my promise I made to him. He made it clear that if I turn this concert into a political event that he would stop what he's doing and go on the road to campaign against me and for President Bush."

Hillary was about to jump in, but Bill stopped her. "And if you don't think he can hurt me, you're wrong. He is the most powerful sitting Governor of our time and if you need any proof of that just look of what he's done in the last couple of months with just Mexico. He stood up to a different country and every border state fell in line with him. California has just passed his Gay Rights Bill and Florida isn't in the bag for us. This guy is very popular across this country and if he sticks is nose into this campaign he will give President Bush a second term."

"Come on you can't believe that is..." Bill interrupted his wife. "Yes I do think it's true! This guy can throw his hat into the ring right now and get elected in a land slide victory as our next President. I don't want to be on the receiving end of this guy's wrath. So we're going to go to this concert tonight and follow through on the promise I made Governor Lopez. By doing so, we will earn points with the man that we can cash in later when we need them."

At that moment Chelsea took off her head phones and heard what her parents were discussing. She got up from her seat and made her way to her parents. "Please mom and dad don't ruin this for me tonight, please!" Chelsea pleaded. "I want to see Josh and not be kicked out of the concert because you guys do something that might upset his parents. Please let me have this night!"

Hearing her daughter's pleas, Hillary's heart sunk in her chest. Not wanting to disappoint her daughter once again, she agreed to follow through on the promise Bill made to Daniel Sr. Once she made that promise, Bill quickly changed the subject over to Josh. He started asking his daughter what was her favorite songs of his and if he could hear them before they landed.

When he sat back and heard the young man's CD he couldn't believe the voice. He couldn't believe such a young man could pull at your heart strings the way he does when he sings. Now he sees why all the gay guys want him and how all girls wish that he wasn't gay. This young man could pull you into the song and make you forget what is going on in your life at that moment.

Just as Bill listened to the last song on Josh's debut album he was informed that they were about to land in Dallas. He handed his daughter back her CD and buckled up as the plane made its approach to the airport. It didn't take long after landing for them to get the all clear to get up and disembark from the aircraft, which made Chelsea one of the happiest girls in the world.

As promised by Governor Lopez there was a limousine waiting for the Clintons to take them to the stadium. The entire ride from the airport to the stadium Chelsea couldn't settle down in her seat. She kept fiddling with her CD Walkman as she looked out the window. So when they finally pulled up to a private entrance to the stadium it wasn't a surprise to Bill or Hillary that their daughter got even worse. She almost jumped out of the limousine as it was still going at one point.

When it did stop and they all got down, they were held back for a few minutes for security reasons. The stadium was still packed with audience from the earlier show that Josh gave. They refused to leave until Josh came out and did one last song. Because of that, it delayed the evening concert by almost thirty minutes, but no one in the audience complained.

Once they were able to move, the Clintons were escorted down a long tunnel into the arena where they were met by screaming fans. The fans were not screaming for them. They were screaming for Josh to come out. Chelsea couldn't help herself, she joined in, which Bill and Hillary knew better then to try and stop her once she got started, so they didn't.

What did get her to stop was when they arrived at their seats and were face to face with the Lopez family. The introductions were done between the two families before they took their seats. Bill and Daniel Sr. were the only two talking at first, but it wasn't long before Barbara and Hillary started talking. It was small talk mostly and they didn't stop until the stadium went dark.

The fans went crazy. At first no one could make out what was being said, but in no time flat all the fans got into sync chanting Josh's name. Chelsea and the fans behind and to the side of the Clintons and Lopez's joined in. Making it even harder for anyone around them to think, but it got worse when the house lights started to go off and the music started.

Then suddenly all the lights from the stage started to flash as the drums began to play even louder and the electric guitars joined in, causing the fans to go even crazier. This went on for almost a minute before the fans went really wild when Josh came up from the ground and started to sing his opening song, `Footloose'.








I been working so hard

I'm punching my card

Eight hours for what

Chelsea jumped to her feet and she started to dance along with the music, just like every other teenager in the stadium was doing at the moment. Josh made his way to center stage playing his electric guitar as he sang and danced along with the beat. Bill and Hillary couldn't believe what they were seeing. But the biggest surprise to them was that Josh's parents weren't as surprised as they were. It was as if this was a normal day in their lives.

Oh, tell me what I got

I get this feeling

Times just holding me down

I'll hit the ceiling

Or else I'll tear up this town


Tonight I gotta cut loose, footloose

Kick off your Sunday shoes

Please, Louise, pull me off of my knees

Jack, get back, come on before we crack

Lose your blues, everybody cut footloose

Josh was really getting into his performance. Even though this was the second time he opened that evening, he sang as if it was the first time. Because of the energy he was putting into his performance, he was getting that back ten times over from those that came to watch him. His father once again was knocked off of his feet on how his son was so comfortable out there on the stage.

You're playing so cool

Obeying every rule

Deep way down in your heart

You're burning yearning for some

Somebody to tell you

That life ain't passing you by

I'm trying to tell you

It will if you don't even try

You'll get by if you'd only


Cut loose, footloose

Kick off the Sunday shoes

Oo-wee Marie, shake it, shake it for me

Woah, Milo, come on, come on let's go

Lose your blues, everybody cut footloose.

At this point everyone was into the song. The song has been around since the late eighties, so everyone knew it. They had no problem joining in and those that didn't see the movie Footloose or heard this song before, which was very few and far between, were able to join in with no problem.


(Cut footloose)


(Cut footloose)


(Cut footloose)



We've got to turn you around

And put your feet on the ground

Now take a hold of your soul

Josh wasn't letting his fans down at all. He had broken away from the microphone in the middle of the stage and had made his way around the stage. He walked from one side of the stage to the other with his electric guitar hanging on his back getting every member of the audience to sing along with him. Even Bill, Hillary, Rose and the other adults in the audience got into the song and sang along. They couldn't help it. Josh just had something in him that got even the ones that were dead set on not joining in to join in.

I'm turning it loose


Footloose, kick off the Sunday shoes

Please, Louise, pull me off of my knees

Jack, get back, come on before we crack

Lose your blues, everybody cut footloose

(Footloose) footloose

Knowing the song was about to end, Josh didn't want to be caught out in the middle of the walkway. He tried to slap as many hands as he could, but knew he still had entire concert left to high five everyone that makes their way to the front of the stage. So he started to make his way back to where he began, but along the way he threw out a couple of guitar pics to his fans.

Kick off the Sunday shoes

Please, Louise, pull me off of my knees

Jack, get back, come on before we crack

Lose your blues, everybody cut, everybody cut

Everybody cut, everybody cut

Everybody cut, everybody cut


(Everybody) everybody cut footloose

As the song came to a close, the fans wouldn't stopped singing along, which no minded. Josh stood out there in the middle of the stage and didn't start the next song as he was asked not to. Then when he saw his family, Ivan and the President of his label walk onto the stage, he knew something was up. He knew this had to be one of the surprises his father was talking about earlier.

It took a few minutes for the audience to quiet down and take their seats, but once they did, Ivan took to the microphone. "Good evening one and all and welcome to the first solo concert of this young man standing beside me." The fans jumped to their feet yelling. "I'm so proud of what this young man has accomplished in such a short period of time and tonight in front of this great Texas audience I'm proud to honor Josh with what you guys have honored him with, which is..."


Writers corner:

{Welcome back one and all to another exciting filled chapter of `Shadow of My Father'. This chapter was filled with a lot of drama and a lot of plot lines through a couple of days. It did finally get to the concert, which I think many of you might have thought that the way it was going that it might not get there. So much happened so I say let's get on with the summation.

The chapter picked up with the plot that has been in three of my four stories in this saga, `Regrets and Heartaches, Beneath the Mask and now this one'. As I said before the only saga the plot isn't going to be in is `Jacob Finding His Way'. There is really no characters in that story that are involved in this plot and the few minor ones can be out in the others.

With that said Daniel Sr. tried to go to his friend the President to try and get Beth and Dominic charged under federal law, but got turned down. That was a hit to him because I'm sure he went into the call almost assured that he was going to have those two back behind bars before the end of the day, but that didn't happen. A lot more than that happened, but that didn't.

What do you guys think about how things went down in that conversation between the Governor and the President? President Bush is fighting a hard reelection campaign that he didn't think he was going to fight. He has an opponent that he never saw coming and there is the third party candidate that came out of nowhere that is causing him problems. So far to date all the political going ons are based on what happened that year in that election except for Governor Lopez being there. Who knows what actually was going on behind the scenes in that presidential election except those there, but I think by what I saw on T.V. I'm hitting pretty close to how each were feeling.

Anyways back to the story Governor Lopez made it clear to President Bush how disappointed he has become with his party. Which everything he said is true about how the Republican Party has gotten in recent history. I only wish in reality in the very near future a real man like Governor Lopez comes along and fixes the broken Republican Party and makes it great once again.

Daniel Sr. and the Senior Bush got off of their phone call with so much up in the air. Mainly where their friendship now stands. Knowing Daniel he isn't a man that hold s a grudge. He will not depend on Bush in the future, but as far as their friendship is concerned it is still intact as it was before the call started. To prove that point Daniel made it clear he was going to come out in support of Bush and help him where he can to get him reelected to a second term.

The last day of school went by pretty fast for the boys, as it did in my other sagas. Before Josh, Cesar and the others knew it they were on their way to Austin to be with their father, which they were all excited on doing. The more and more I write out this family I come to realize how close they all are. Not what you suspected when the story first started and how things were.

Patrick however didn't have a good last evening before Spring Break. He had a nagging feeling there was something wrong with his mother so he went over and to check on her. However what he found was something he didn't expect. Some people take it hard when they lose someone close to them like Lucia did. Some take to the bottle like Lucia did. It's just bad that a child of hers not only found her in the condition she was in, but she almost killed him by shooting at him. How do you guys think Patrick handled it all? How do you think Father Gomez handled it?

Talking about Father Gomez he had a pretty busy evening. He must have just gotten home and put up his feet when Patrick had called him. Like always he took Eric and Bernice to work at Taco Bell before getting the phone call. Those two seem to be very excited about their Spring Break like everyone else. I hope they are not too tired from working the first couple of days to not have fun.

Back in Austin Daniel was trying to get out to meet up with his family when he got the call that President Bush warned him was coming from then Governor Bill Clinton. I liked what I saw when Daniel Sr. put down his foot and made it clear that the concert was not going to be used as a political press conference. He made it very clear if Bill tried to do that what was going to happen.

The boys arrived in Austin and had a great time with their father. From the cook out to the little playing around in the room by Josh and Cesar. Poor Barbara she keeps walking in on the boys right when they are about to, well you know. These boys are teenagers and if you can remember being a teenager how horny you were all the time.

Josh once again didn't sleep well that night. I'm sure like any old house in our community it makes odd noises throughout the night, but ghosts I don't know about that. Is Josh letting his imagination get the best of him? Or is the old Governor's Mansion truly haunted? This plot has been around for a while now and soon it will be answered, hopefully, LOL!

Now the concert! We finally got to the first of several concerts that Josh is going to perform during his Spring Break tour. We saw it through the eyes of Chelsea most of the time. She loves Josh and wishes that he played ball on her side of the fence, like many girls do. Josh knows that and isn't ignoring it. He knows where his fan base is and is trying to make them happy.

The opening song was great. It got the audience on their feet. Josh was enjoying it on stage and in return he was pulling in his audience as well. Now I wonder what is going on at the end of the chapter. What is Ivan going to present to Josh? Forget that for now, what was Barbara and Daniel talking about as far as several surprises to come? Man this chapter has so many cliff hangers I can't wait to start writing the next chapter of this saga.

So many plots out there and not enough paper to write them up in one chapter! If I missed anything in this chapter in my corner, Trevor will cover it in his corner I hope. With that said, don't ever think a plot line is going one direction, because I have been known to do a one eighty and change where the plot was going. Never think a character is one hundred percent good, or one hundred percent bad, because I have been known on changing them as well. A character is never gone in a saga unless the character is killed. So if you haven't seen them for a while, don't write them off. I love to keep you all guessing in each of my chapters.

I could stay here all day long, with all the open plots already in this story, but I won't. I warn you though! Don't skip a chapter, or you will be lost. There is a so much to answer in the chapters to come. Keep reading the future chapters, and enjoy! Please email me and let me know how I am doing at jacobmillertex@aol.com, Thanks!}


A big chapter and a long one mainly because as Jacob pointed out he wanted to finish with the opening song of the show. I hope you'll all check out the video because Jacob spent a lot of time and effort producing it and doing a great job.

There were a lot of politics as well in this chapter and my author tells me there will be a lot more in the future. Governor Lopez was disappointed with the conversation he had with George W Bush who we can now see lost the presidential position because he listened to the wrong people and Bill Clinton is playing it just right to get elected as the next President of the United States.

I felt so sorry for Patrick who shouldn't have had to do what he did for his mom but as they blood is thicker than water although he should have called Father Gomez right off the bat. I hope he gets over his trauma so that he can enjoy his week away with his boyfriend.

I'm afraid Josh and Cesar aren't going to have much alone time this week. At least not as much as they thought. Every time Josh goes out of his hotel no matter where he is he will be recognized and be asked for autographs and pictures. In another lifetime I had to endure this and no matter how annoying it gets you have to smile and put up with it because after all they are the people who have put you were you are.

While I don't think he will Cesar had better not be jealous, but get used to just standing back behind his boyfriend while the fans take over. What story did Barbara tell about Daniel Snr over Breakfast in Austin? That was a sneaky little cliff hanger which we will have to wait for the answer to.

Such a lot happening in this story which is one of my favorites and it's a pity we had to wait for such a long time between chapters, with so much going on. While the Governor is away from Austin this time will his enemies try and do something sneaky and nasty or will Rich be on the ball and stop any funny business. We also didn't hear how his love affair was going. So much happening in this story.

I certainly hope Jacob hasn't got any nasty surprises up his sleeve over the spring break and that he allows all the guys to have a good time.

Please let Jacob know what you think of this and indeed all his stories after all that is the only pay he gets for the hard work he puts into his yarns.

Hugs Trevor