Nifty Disclaimer - This story is a work of fiction and contains scenes including sexual relations between people of the same gender. If this isn't your cup of tea, or is illegal where you live, please do not read. Any relation between fictional characters and real people is purely coincidental.


Chapter 15 Note - Chapter 14 originally cotnained the text to this chapter. If you've read it and it did not make sense, go back and read 14 again. It has been corrected.


Do Over

Chapter 15

By DK Stories


I lay in that bare room of the Barringer house, staring at the picture of Brian and I together, smiling happily and thought about how much it sucked being legally a kid. Dealing with these types of issues as an adult would be so much easier, had been so much easier, than doing it as a teenager with little control over my own life. Even with that, I knew I was very, very lucky.

I had Brian, his family, my other friends and their largely supportive parents. I had Mary Lou, and Judge Thompson both on my side. Mr. Borsch, Coach Halpern, and the team were also supportive in their own ways, making this whole thing easier to deal with, and I had a secret lifetime's worth of experience to back me up, and give me strength. Most kids in this type of situation didn't even have a tenth of that support.

The situation with Mom didn't really surprise me too much. She was raised to believe that a wife was always properly submissive to the husband, and that divorce was something to be avoided at all costs. Despite that, though, I knew she loved my sister and me with all of her heart. When Jenny had, in my first life, told her about being molested, Mom had not hesitated to pack up us kids and drive back to California. Over the next three years, she had reconciled with Dad for about a year, after he'd gone to jail for what he'd done, and then finally divorced him while I was in the Navy. She'd never really recovered from those fights with Dad and had started drinking, something I knew I'd have to watch out for again, but she had done all that to protect Jenny, and to protect me. Now, she had separated from Dad in this lifetime, in order to protect me.

"Get off the bed." Mr. Barringer's voice startled me out of my musings. I hadn't even heard him open the door. I rose quickly and stood at attention, something about the man bringing out my military experiences sharply. He frowned at the picture on the dresser and glared at me. "Who is that in the picture?"

"My boyfriend Brian and I." I answered honestly.

"Give it to me." He ordered, holding out his hand.

"Why?" I challenged him and his swarthy face grew red.

"Don't argue with me, just hand it over!" He nearly shouted.

"Why?" I repeated, holding my jaw clamped to stop from challenging him further.

"Because I told you to!" He shouted and I picked up the picture.

"If it offends you, I will put it back in my bag." I said as calmly as I could.

"Give me your whole bag." He ordered angrily. "I have to search it for contraband."

"Search it here." I said, picking it up off the floor and putting it back on the bed.

"You don't tell me what to do." He said firmly, snatching the bag, and picture out of my hand and storming out of the room. The door was locked behind him and I let out a long sigh of exasperation. Twenty minutes later, the door reopened, and I was still standing where I'd been when he'd left, but it was a police officer, not Mr. Barringer. I was not in the least surprised after my bag had been taken out of the room.

"Davey Jones?" The officer said in a tight voice and I nodded. "Come out here please."

I followed the officer out into the living room where there was another officer waiting, the short social worker who had brought me here was also there. I remembered her name as being Mrs. Flores. Mr. and Mrs. Barringer were glaring at me, and my bag lay on the couch, opened and half my clothing removed from it, as were the pictures I'd brought with me. The picture of Brian and I was nowhere to be seen.

"Is this your bag?" The officer asked, pointing to it.

"Yes, it is." I said, knowing right where this was going.

"Do you care to explain this?" The officer asked, reaching into the bag and pulling out a very small baggie filled with white powder.

"I have no explanation for that because I did not put it in my bag." I said calmly, ignoring the tight smile on Mr. Barringer's face. "My bag has not been in my possession for the last twenty minutes."

"So you're claiming this isn't yours?" The officer said in a disbelieving tone. "Do you have any idea how often I've heard that?"

"Probably a lot." I conceded with a tight smile. "How about we go down to the hospital and you can observe me taking a urine or blood test. You will find no evidence of drug use in my body. Then you can take that bag down to your forensics department and you will find that my fingerprints are not on that baggie."

"You seem awful confident about that." The officer noted suspiciously.

"Davey is a problem child within our department, officer." Mrs. Flores said quickly and firmly. "There's no need to take him to the hospital for a drug screening, just book him and put him the juvenile detention center. We'll be recommending he be placed in the CYA immediately."

"It's interesting that the social worker who has said barely ten words to me, and who was just assigned to my case after intense political pressure on the Director would be so knowledgeable about me and so insistent on not letting me provide proof of my innocence." I said as calmly as I could. "It's also interesting officer, that the door to my bedroom in this place was locked from the outside, in direct violation of Social Services rules and regulations on proper foster care, isn't it? Isn't it also interesting that Mr. Barringer entered my room about twenty minutes or so ago, demanded my bag and left with it, leaving me locked in there, and you showed up so quickly?"

"The call was received over forty minutes ago." The officer stated. I held up my watch so he could see that I had the ability to keep time.

"He took my bag twenty-four minutes ago exactly." I said firmly and the officer looked back at Mr. Barringer.

"The boy's lying." Mr. Barringer fumed. "We were warned he's an accomplished liar, and he's already defied me several times."

"Where's my picture?" I demanded of Mr. Barringer letting some of my anger peek out into my voice.

"What picture?" Mr. Barringer asked innocently.

"The picture of Brian and I, the one you demanded I hand over to you." I stated firmly, a little more anger showing. "That picture is my property, and it's not here with the rest of my stuff."

"There is no other picture." Mr. Barringer stated firmly. "All your stuff is there on the couch."

"Then you won't mind if the officer and I look in the garbage." I said and he frowned.

"You will do no such thing." Mr. Barringer stated. "Officer, just take the kid to jail where he belongs."

"I think we'll have a look in your garbage, if you don't mind." The officer stated.

"I do mind." Mr. Barringer said firmly.

"Officer, I'd like to report a stolen item." I said calmly and saw the man smiled. "it was a six by eight silver picture frame of myself and another boy from a year ago. We're wearing our school's wrestling uniforms after he won the divisional championship and I came in third. It was last seen in the possession of Mr. Barringer as he took it and my bag from the room I'd been locked in, the same room where you found me a few minutes ago."

"Your room was not locked." The officer stated firmly and I frowned until he spoke again, this time with a frown of his own. "The door did lock from the outside though. Mr. Barringer, since we have already found drugs in this house, there is probable cause to search the rest of the house. I can do it without a warrant or your permission. Now, do you know where this missing picture is or do I have to look?"

"It's in the dumpster outside." Mr. Barringer said with a frown, his shoulders sagging and he started to get a very worried look on his face. The officer's partner went out back and returned with a broken picture frame, and the picture torn in two.

"Sorry kid." He said to me with a slight shrug. I almost cried at that, but slowly said to myself that we could always get another copy. Mom B had the originals.

"Officer, would you be so kind as to hold onto this for when I bring charges against these people?" I asked the first police officer who nodded, pulling out an evidence bag and putting it inside.

"Now, why don't we head down the hospital." The officer said to me and I nodded. "I won't bother putting handcuffs on you if you promise to behave."

"You have my word, officer." I said firmly and followed him outside while Mrs. Flores was talking quickly with Mr. and Mrs. Barringer. As I got into the police car's back seat, Mrs. Flores caught up to the officer and started talking to him very rapidly. With the door shut I couldn't hear what was being said at all. She stalked away angrily though and the officer got into the driver's seat and spoke into the radio before heading off.

"I'm Tom Brendan." The officer said as he drove towards a local hospital.

"It's nice to meet you." I said as kindly as I could.

"Mrs. Flores wanted to know if I'd forget the call and let her handle the matter within her department." Officer Brendan said. "I told her I wouldn't because I believe you when you said the baggie wasn't yours. Officer Mitchell is gathering up your belongings and he'll bring them to the hospital. Dispatch is going to call the Social Services local director and have him meet us there. I'll also be filing a report on suspected abuse in a foster home."

"Thanks." I said softly, letting out a sigh of relief. Thank god for honest cops!

"Why were you standing like that when I entered the room?" He asked me.

"Mr. Barringer ordered me to stand there instead of lying on the bed." I answered and the officer swore under his breath.

"Are you okay otherwise?" He asked me and I shrugged.

"Worn out." I admitted and he nodded.

"What exactly do they have against you?" He asked me, and I explained the whole situation for the rest of the drive to the hospital. The officer did a double take when I told him I was gay but remained silent otherwise.

"You don't look queer." He said when I finished.

"Looks can be deceiving." I said with a little laugh. At the hospital, he escorted me into the emergency room where he talked to a nurse briefly. I was led back to a room where they took my temperature, my blood pressure and then brought a cup to pee in. Both the nurse and the officer watched me pee into the cup, and the nurse returned five minutes later to draw a blood sample.

"We'll have the urinalysis back in a few hours." She said firmly while drawing out the blood. "He insisted we also do a blood screen because the urinalysis only shows if you've taken drugs in the last day or so."

"I wanted it as well." I assured her as she finished.

"We'll wait here for the results of the urinalysis." Officer Brendan said. "If it comes back negative, I'll release you into Social Services custody pending results of your blood test. In the morning, the DA will get everything to look at."

"Sounds good to me." I said, but I was suddenly worried at how all this would affect tomorrow's hearing with Judge Thompson. It was supposed to be at ten in the morning. I was left alone in the room for twenty minutes before my door opened again, admitting a large, fat man I didn't know and Mary Lou.

"Are you okay?" Mary Lou asked as she entered, her voice showing her worry.

"I'm okay, a little upset, but okay." I said warily, keeping an eye on the man.

"This is Robert Simpson, the head of the local Social Services Department." Mary Lou said by means of introduction. She was standing by the bed I was lying on, but the man remained halfway between the door and us.

"So you're the guy that caved to pressure and tried to frame me." I said angrily and he blinked quickly.

"I…I had no idea something like that was going to happen." He said defensively. "I've already suspended Margaret Flores and the foster license of the Barringer's pending a full investigation. Ms. Hacker is being reassigned to your case. I've spoken with your mother and decided that we would support her receiving custody and not object to her plans to keep you in your school. As soon as we have the hearing tomorrow, you'll no longer have to worry about Social Services interfering."

"And you won't have to worry about getting phone calls from angry people." I retorted angrily, and took a deep breath to get control again.

"Look, I'm sorry about what happened." He repeated. "Mrs. Flores has handled several cases like yours and assured me the Barringers were well experienced at handling young men like you."

"I'm sure they were excellent at framing them, locking them in rooms, taking their possessions and destroying them." I said, my anger popping back up again and he blanched slightly.

"Davey, there will be a full investigation, I promise." Mary Lou said and I relaxed slightly. "We've already talked to Officer Brendan and as soon as the urinalysis comes back, you'll be going home with Mr. and Mrs. Rush. They are already on their way here."

"What about the hearing tomorrow?" I asked. "How will this affect that?"

"It shouldn't have any affect at all, except maybe pissing off Judge Thompson." Mr. Simpson said quietly. "If they even dare bring up drug use as an issue, knowing him he'll throw them in jail for contempt."

"He probably will." Mary Lou agreed and I relaxed a little more. Tyatya and Dyadya showed up twenty minutes later, and proceeded to grill me over and over again on if I was okay. Tyatya kept on touching me all over as if looking for bruises, but there were no new ones except those I got in football. It took three hours for the lab test to come back, negative of course, and I was released to go home with my friend's parents. I was a little surprised to find Brian at home, along with his parents, and of course Trevor. I had to repeat everything again, and I was given a very pleasant surprise in that Brian was allowed to stay the night with me. I went to sleep with him holding on to me so tightly that every breath pushed against his grip. I didn't mind though, and went to sleep feeling much better, despite it already being one in the morning.

Tyatya let us sleep in, and poor Trevor had to do the chores by himself. Brian and I were just getting downstairs when he showed up for breakfast after having showered. He was grinning at us and I knew he was going to say something at breakfast. I made sure I was ready to drop my surprise on him since both of his parents were also there eating their breakfast.

"Does this mean when I have a bad day I can have my girlfriend sleep over?" Trevor asked his dad teasingly over breakfast. Since Brian was here, we were speaking only in English.

"No." His dad answered firmly. "I trust Davey to obey my rules just this once."

"I already promised if we were going to have sex we'd go out in the barn like you do with your friends." I said to Trevor, who choked at my words.

"DAVEY!" He wailed, looking at his parents with a scared expression.

"Well, we did tell him that was what you did." Tyatya said with a knowing smile and Trevor's face drained itself of all the blood in it. Brian and I were giggling uncontrollably while Trevor's parents smirked at him and he just stared at them.

"So, do you think you'll make it back in time for lunch?" Brian asked me in the quiet that followed, referring to the court hearing.

"Probably." I said with a shrug. "What happened with that reporter?"

"Oh, it's been rescheduled to after the board meeting tonight." Brian said and I suppressed a groan. It wasn't all over, there was still a lot going on today, and we had a game tomorrow. The rest of breakfast was relatively quiet after that, with Trevor not meeting his parents' gazes, and the drive to school, by Dyadya was equally quiet. As soon as were out of the truck though, Trevor was quite vocal.

"Why the fuck didn't you tell me my parents knew?" Trevor demanded of me angrily, his face flushed red.

"It was funnier to do it this way." I said with a shrug and he punched me in the arm. Not hard, but enough to feel it very well.

"You bastard!" He nearly shouted. "I thought I was fooling them all this time? How long have they known? My god, they must know I do it with guys and girls!"

"They've known for years." I said smugly and he groaned. "As for who you do it with…they love you anyways."

"Shit, now I'm going to have to find a new place!" Trevor muttered.

"Why?" I asked. "It's not like they've stopped you yet."

"But they know!" Trevor wailed. "I can't be out there having fun knowing they know what I'm up to!"

"Poor Trevor." Brian joked and then turned to me. "So when are we going to do it in the barn?"

"Tomorrow after the game?" I offered and he nodded his agreement.

"You guys are sick." Trevor said before storming off. Brian and I just laughed as a confused Brandon came up behind us.

"What's his beef?" Brandon asked us.

"He found out his mom and dad know he's been porking guys and girls in the barn." I said around my laughter and Brandon laughed.

"I've known that for a year." Brandon said with his own laughter, only making us laugh even harder than we had been. Trevor came storming back towards us, his face livid and very suspicious as he saw Brandon laughing.

"Oh, you had to tell him too?" Trevor fumed when he got close enough.

"No, I just told them I've known your parents knew for a year." Brandon retorted and Trevor worked his jaw noiselessly for a few minutes.

"How…how did you know?" He finally asked.

"Your dad gave me a pair of my underwear last year and said we'd left them in the barn the night before and would I please remember to clean up after we had our fun." Brandon said and we all burst out laughing except for Trevor.

"Fuck!" Trevor shouted loudly, drawing more attention to us. "Why didn't you tell me?"

"He asked me not to." Brandon said with a shrug. "He likes to keep an eye on who you're doing it with."

"Fuck, fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck." Trevor ranted, and then paused before storming away, an evil glint in his eye. "Oh, and Mr. Borsch wants to see you two pronto in his office."

"Fuck." I repeated and now Trevor was smiling.

"They're making it a closed meeting, or at least going to try to do so." Mr. Borsch told me when we got to his office. "There are two board members who are vehemently opposed to this, Three pushing it, and two who haven't made up their mind yet."

"What exactly are they doing?" I asked him.

"They are proposing a new district rule." He informed us. "It's actually pretty slick what they're doing, since they aren't singling you two out. The rule they are proposing states that any student known to be infected or at high risk of being infected with HIV or AIDS will not be allowed to attend any regular campus or participate in extra-curricular activities. It requires the District Superintendent, not the school Principal, to have students identified as being infected or at-risk transferred to the alternative education campus."

"Can they do that?" Brian asked quietly, and then started to answer his own question as he thought things through. "There's a proposal going around to add AIDS to the list of disabilities. That's at the federal level, and if that happens, this policy would be voided. We can argue it's discriminatory to a class of people, but there's not really been any cases so far, so they probably can get away with it for now."

"But it has no effect on us." I pointed out and that got me a surprised look from Mr. Borsch and Brian smiled.

"Yeah, we're not infected and we're not high-risk." Brian said. "We even have a letter from one of the pre-eminent doctors in this field saying we are not at high risk."

"Boys, it's up to the District Superintendent to decide who is at risk and he'll definitely say you two are." Mr. Borsch reminded us and I smiled.

"Then we'll be rich millionaires and this district will be broke after we get done tearing him apart in court." I said greedily and Mr. Borsch frowned.

"I think you boys better head to class before I hear any more of your thoughts." He said in a warning tone and we left. We actually weren't late to English, but as soon as the class was over I headed out to the office, checked out for court, and then met my mom outside. She was driving her white RX-7 and actually looked happy to see me. As she drove to the courthouse we talked about the events of the night before, and she expressed her own outrage. Apparently Mary Lou had called her and told her everything. When she was done telling Nanny about it, my grandmother had been absolutely outraged. I was no longer unwelcome in their home, and was actually under strict orders from Nanny to 'kick their asses' for what they tried to do to me.

Yep, that was the Nanny I loved. She might have very strong beliefs that I found unsupportable, but she also had a strong sense of fairness. She'd never talked to a step-daughter after the girl married a black man, but the girl was still in her will, and would be until she died. She often said "I don't care what someone does with their life as long as they don't try to bring it into my home." Brian may never meet her, may never go to their house, but at the same time she wouldn't stop loving me. It's a very weird dichotomy, but I couldn't find my way to disrespecting her fortitude in remaining consistent.

I also knew she'd voted against the California proposition in 1998 that defined marriage as only being between a man and a woman. She never let me bring a boyfriend to visit with her, she never wanted to hear about them or ever discuss my sexuality, but she damn well didn't think the state had any right to say I couldn't marry a guy if I wanted to do so. If the state was going to let black and white people marry, what was the big deal about two men or two women?

She was born in Arkansas in 1919, grew up in the Great Depression, and was the very definition of a poor southern woman. Her parents died when she was twelve, she helped raise three younger siblings before meeting my blood grandfather and moving to California with him. She divorced him after my mother was born because he gambled all their money away, and then married the man I knew as my grandfather two years later. Papa had five kids to add to her three, and I hadn't known they weren't all blood relatives until I was eleven years old.

The hearing lasted for all of ten minutes in front of Judge Thompson, and was the first case called before his court. Social Services explained that my mother had separated from my father and they felt that it was now reasonable to return me to her custody. Mom stood before Judge Thompson while he gave her a speech about the importance of stability and a supportive home environment. Mom explained she planned to allow me to stay with the Rush family while she found a more permanent housing solution, and he included in his final order that all efforts were to be made to keep me at my current school.

Mom dropped me off in time so that I only missed the one class, and I had to whisper to Brian before the next class began what had happened. He slapped my back carefully just as the teacher began roll call. Practice that afternoon was typical Thursday light drill, but everyone was extremely sloppy as Brian and I were accosted at every opportunity by anxious teammates wanting to know what was happening. Coach finally announced he and the other coaches were going for a ten minute break and when they returned they expected all of us to have our heads in the game or there would be hell to pay. They had not taken four steps when Brian and I were surrounded by our teammates in their shoulder pads, jerseys, and tight shorts, all demanding to know exactly what was going on tonight.

"Dude, that's total bullshit!" Reynolds shouted after we'd explained about the new regulation that was being proposed. "They can't kick you out of school just because you talk to people with that fucking disease! That's bullshit!"

"You're not worried it's going to jump from their skin to ours when we shake their hands or give them a hug?" Brian asked sarcastically.

"Fuck no." Reynolds roared. "We know the shit ain't spread like that."

"Well at least you know more than most people." Brian said with a snort that got a few laughs.

"So, what do you guys want us to do?" Reynolds asked and several people murmured in support of his question.

"I would like all of you to think about what's going on." I said firmly, meeting as many of them in the eyes as I could. "What I want is for each of you, on your own, to think about this and decide if it's important enough to you as an individual that you are willing to speak out. I don't care if you are in support, or against us being here, but if you feel it's important enough, show up at the meeting tonight and when you have the chance, speak your mind. For those of you who do show up, I ask you don't give those who don't a bad time. We'll appreciate any support you give, but if you can't or won't, let's not beat each other up over it. We're a fucking team, and we can't let shit like this break us apart."

"Amen." Reynolds said loudly and several of the guys laughed. The coaches were heading back by then, and we broke up to get back to our practicing. Coach Halpern seemed please that the earlier distraction was no longer in evidence, and by the time practice ended seemed satisfied. He did keep Brian and I behind though, as everyone headed into the locker room.

"I'm going to be there tonight." He told us as we walked slowly back towards the locker room. "I'm not sure what I'm going to say exactly, but I'm going to be there and I'm going to tell them that if they force you off the team they are doing a disservice to you, to your teammates, and to this school."

"Thanks, Coach." Brian said and I mumbled my agreement. I never expected this taciturn man to be so supportive.

"You boys earned it, and I'm recommending that next year you boys be on Varsity, not J.V." He told us, and I felt my stomach do a flip-flop. There hadn't been a single sophomore on Downey's Varsity team in years, much less two of them. "You've earned it boys, on the field, and you're showing real leadership here. You proved that just now when you handled the team's distraction and got them focused back on football. The Varsity team is losing almost half the team to graduation, and the incoming seniors and juniors don't have anyone who can match your skills. Coach Horn agrees, and wants you both on the team, and he's as pissed about this crap as I am."

"Thanks for your confidence Coach." I said.

"After the season's over I'm going to give you boys a pamphlet on a football camp I want you to think about attending in the summer." He continued. "It's run by some NFL pros and it's expensive. If you can't afford it, let me know and I'll see what we can do about having some of the alumni help cover the costs."

"It shouldn't be a problem." Brian said with a smile.

"Well, get cleaned up and I'll see you tonight." Coach Halpern said with an approving nod and we headed inside.

"Varsity." Brian said like it was the Holy Grail, and I had to agree. It was a big deal for me as well as for him.

We showered, and dressed pretty quickly because the board meeting was at seven that evening, and we had a lot to do before then. Brian's parents were waiting for us when we came out, and drove us to the Sun Dial Lodge downtown. The old hotel had a large banquet room that was fairly private, and was exactly what was needed. The room was fairly packed with people when we entered. I spent a few minutes hugging Jenny who was all dressed up and happy to see me, and I sat down next to Mom, with Brian on my right and his parents on the other side of him. Tyatya and Dyadya were there with Trevor, Brandon, his parents, and his younger sister was there as well. Mary Lou was there as well, as was Doctor Grayson and Mom's boss, Doctor Erickson who I'd met once before. With Mary Lou was another woman who I hadn't met before. She was of medium height, with a typical eighties buoyant hair style, although her dark hair did have a hint of grey, and she was dressed in a cream business suit with a skirt.

"I'm Cynthia Martin, the Northern California Director of the ACLU." She introduced herself as we sat down at the table. A waiter was moving around the room taking orders unobtrusively. The Sun Dial was known for the place where Rotary, City Council members, and others went to hold business lunches, and all their staff were given stern lectures on keeping their mouths shut. "I've been retained by Brian's parents, and Davey's mom, on a pro-bono basis for tonight's hearing, and any future issues they might face. I know everyone here is either a friend or family member of the two boys, but I want to stress that what is said should be held in the utmost of confidence."

"Thanks for being here." I said to her and she smiled. Mary Lou was an old college friend of hers, something I'd not forgotten and it'd only taken a single question to get Mary Lou to call her in. Everything else had been easy from there.

"Not a problem, young man." She said with a winning smile. "Now, why don't we go over what's been happening so far? I understand it's been a busy time."

It took nearly forty minutes to get everything out on the table and she asked a lot of questions in between. Jenny and Brandon's sister both looked bored and were busy whispering to each other the entire time. By the time we were done, everyone had their main course sitting in front of them.

"This question is mostly for the boys and their parents, but it does affect all of you so you should think about it as well." Cynthia said when we were done. "How far are you willing to take this? If the board passes this regulation, and you fight it in court, it's going to be big, very big. You're going to get national attention, and a lot of it won't be good. There's going to be press hounding you every day, there's going to be protest groups everywhere you go, and you're going to be thrust into the national spotlight in a big hurry. Your lives will never be the same again, and you're going to have to deal with that, especially Davey and Brian, but if you're friends with them and stick by them, you're going to get caught up in it to. It's not like the movies where you get all famous and everyone loves you. People are going to hate you, you're going to receive hate mail, hate calls, and probably death threats. AIDS and homosexuality are becoming hot topics and because of the age of you boys, this issue is going to play very big in the press. I'm going to be honest with you, a lot of that is going to be our doing, because the other side will be out there trying to convince people of their argument, and to counter them we'll have to put you boys under the spotlights. Can you handle that?"

"I can." I said confidently, but Mom was looking very pale. Keeping things quiet had always been the rule in her family and this was not going to be something she could hide from Nanny and Papa. They watched the news every night.

"I…I'm not sure I like it, but I'm not going to stop Davey if he feels like he has to do it." Mom said after a moment's silence. I had to give her a hug for saying that and she looked grateful.

"I'm ready." Brian said gruffly, smiling at me while his parents nodded more somberly.

"I…there are reasons why I cannot be in the spotlight." Mr. Rush said softly and I nodded in understanding. The Soviet Union was very much alive and well in this age. "But, I will do what I can. If we can keep where Davey is staying as secret as possible, I will make sure he has a home where he can escape the attention."

"That should be possible." Cynthia said firmly and he sighed with relief.

"We support our son and his friends." Mr. Walker said firmly with a fond look at Brandon, who blushed slightly.

"I'm no stranger to the national spotlight." Doctor Grayson said with some humor. "It's also about damn time these boys stood up and got some recognition for the good work they've been doing."

"I'll make sure Davey's mom has all the time she needs to work with him." Dr. Erickson said with an approving nod towards my mom. "She's got my office running smoothly, and she's a valuable employee. I'm honored to be able to help in any way I can."

"Thanks doctor." Mom mumbled.

"I've resigned my part-time position with Social Services." Mary Lou said and I had to raise my eyebrows at that. "I'm going to be adding some classes to my teaching schedule next semester, and the faculty board will approve anything I do as part of my community involvement requirements. I also have some ideas I'm going to discuss with Davey and Brian and want to get them involved with some members of my campus support group."

"Well, then, it looks like we're all in agreement." Cynthia said. "If you'll excuse me, I need to use the mobile phone in my car. I have a friend at NBC's Sacramento affiliate and they can get a news crew down here in time for the meeting if I call them now."

"Oh god." Mom mumbled softly as Cynthia got up from her chair, leaving her pasta linguine untouched. Mom was playing with her chicken parmesan.

"It'll be okay Mom." I said in a joking tone. "Nanny watches CBS, not NBC."

"Funny, Davey, really funny." Mom grunted as everyone who heard the joke laughed.


As with all my stories, E provides immeasurable input, grammar checking, and all those other lovely editing thingies that make the story so much better!


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A/N - Several Readers have asked if I have a website or other stories on the net. Some of my early stories, including MIsts of Fate were posted here to Nifty and to . Most of my later stories are now posted on in the Hosted Authors section (just look for DK Stories). Enjoy!