Written by: J.P.G.

{"Beneath the Mask" 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 anyway, shape or form without author's express written consent.}

Story Written by: J.P.G.

Editor: Daddy Rick

Editor: 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 51


Ashton once again spent the night in a cold, damp, dark sewer tunnel, as he had the night before. When he woke up, he was unable to move his body. He was in pain and his open wounds were getting black and green. Even some of them actually had some puss oozing out of them, which grabbed his attention.

When he tried to get up, his head started spinning and he fell right back onto the concrete floor, hitting his head as he went down. At first when he woke up again, he couldn't remember where he was or why he was there. All he could think about is why he isn't in his bed back at home.

Scratching his head, Ashton tried to get up again, but couldn't. He fell back to the ground, this time he didn't hit his head. Not knowing exactly what was going on, he leaned back and tried to gather his thoughts. As he sat there trying to remember the last day or so, things started coming back to him.

It took awhile, but Ashton remembered everything. Mustering all of his strength and with the help of the wall, he slowly got to his feet. In agony, he walked out of the sewer tunnel dragging his leg. As soon as he got into the sunlight, he put his hand over his eyes to block out the sun.

Once his eyes adjusted to the sunlight, he lowered his hand and started looking around to see if anyone was around. When he saw the coast was clear, he made his way down the street, shielding his face from those that passed him either by car or on foot.

His stomach began to growl when he smelled the food being cooked at the local Burger King. As fast as his wounded body could carry him, he made his way to the back of the store jumping into one of the dumpsters. He didn't care how it looked. All he wanted was to put something into his stomach in order for him to regain his strength.

After tearing open several garbage bags, he got to one that came from the lobby of the restaurant. There were plates of half-eaten pancakes, sausage biscuits, hash browns and half drank cartons of orange juice and milk. Knowing that at any time a worker from the store could walk out. He grabbed the bag and jumped back out of the dumpster.

He ran back down to the sewer tunnel where he slept and started digging in. It took him less than five minutes to eat what he could. When his belly was full, he sealed the bag before lying down to gather his strength. As he lay there, he started going over in his mind what brought him to this point in his life.

The more he thought about what he has done in the last couple days, he started realizing that the hatred he has for Alex is not worth going to prison for. He did everything up to this point to be free. He asked himself why is he willing to give that up just to hurt a guy whom he hates? Answering his own question, he isn't. His freedom means more to him than any revenge he might want get.

After coming to this realization that he doesn't want to give up his freedom for revenge, he decided to make his way to Mexico. The only problem he sees now is how he will get there. He would've had a lot more luck doing it the day he escaped. Not now that his picture is plastered all over the television and in every newspaper in town.

Lying there, Ashton tried to figure out how he was going to be able to get out of the United States. The pain in his legs, arms and even his chest was getting worse by the minute. He couldn't think straight anymore with the pain he was going through. There was no way he could continue to lay or sit there in the pain that he was in.

He got up and made his way out of the tunnel. Since he couldn't figure out how he was going to be able to get over the border, he decided to walk around until the solution came to him. At least while he was on his feet he wasn't in as much pain as he was laying there on his back. The only problem by walking around, he's taking a big risk that someone will notice him and call the police. He decided that's a chance he is going to have to take to be in less pain.

Meanwhile back at the hotel, the guys were in the restaurant eating breakfast and talking about the performance Jacob gave to Dewayne the night before. Jacob didn't believe the guys when they kept saying over and over again that he could sing as good as Josh. Everyone put their two cents in, but it looked like the only one that was getting through to Jacob was his friend Chase.

"The only thing that Josh has over you is that he believes in himself. He knows that he is a great singer and loves doing it. You on the other hand don't know or refuse to admit that you are as talented as Josh is when it comes to singing. Both of you guys have that low voice that many country singers today would kill for." Chase took a breath and looked around the table. He saw his friends hanging on every word he was saying to Jacob.

"And let me tell you another thing; what I would like to see, is you and Josh on stage singing together. Not you joining Los Tigres but just you two on a stage belting out song after song. With both of you on the ticket, the place would sell out and it would be an awesome concert to see. I would pay to see you guys perform, which I know I won't have to since you'll give me back stage passes for free." Chase started to laugh as he winked at Jacob.

"Let's not get too far ahead of ourselves here. I doubt that will ever happen since Josh already has his first CD out and it has gone gold. Popular singers like George Strait, Kenny Rogers, Dolly Patron and many more wanting him to tour with them. There is no way he is going to say no to them and yes to me. So for now let's drop this, go out and get you guys the cars or trucks you've been talking my ear off about for the last week."

No one needed to be told twice. Together, they got up and made their way to the lobby. Once Jacob and Dewayne joined them, they headed out the door. Alex kept looking at Jacob and decided that there was no way he was going to let Jacob give up on something he is very good at. One way or another, he is going to get his friend to see the light and at least try to see what he can do in that industry.

After deciding who was going with whom, everyone jumped into the vehicles. Jacob pulled out first, and Alex followed him. They made their way to Gateway West and once the light turned green they got onto the freeway. The first couple of minutes the truck was quiet, but that didn't last long.

Matt grabbed Alex's attention by grabbing his hand and holding it tight. Alex looked over and smiled at his gorgeous boyfriend. Matt returned the smile and didn't break eye contact with Alex until he turned his attention back to the road. When he did that, Matt broke the silence in the truck.

"There's been something weighing on my mind these last couple nights." Alex turned to Matt and asked him what it was. "I know it's only been a week since Jacob's house burned to the ground, but we really haven't talked about it. None of us in the hotel from Jacob's house have talked about that night."

"The reason no one has really talked about that night is because there's nothing to talk about. Some asshole got jealous and torched Jacob's house. I really believe it's that simple. It's not like what we were all talking about the night of the fire that it was somebody we knew getting their revenge on us."

Matt turned towards Alex. "I know that and that's not what I'm trying to get at. What I'm trying to say is that Jacob's house is no longer, but the house we are going to buy from Jacob is still there. We all know he's not going to build the new house on the old property. That means if we choose to move into the house that we are going to buy from Jacob, we'll be living a long way from our friends."

Alex really hadn't thought much about where Matt and he were going to live. He assumed that once the new house is built, they were going to move into that house with the rest of the guys. The main reason for his assumption is because he had already discussed this exact subject with Jacob not too long ago. Jacob had no problem with Alex and Matt moving in with him, but they really hadn't spoken about it since. However, Matt has now brought up an issue that needs to be addressed as soon as possible.

"To tell you the truth I really haven't given much thought to where we are going to live once the new house is built. Mainly because I spoke with Jacob about this just several days ago and he had no problem with us moving in with him, but I haven't gone back to him to tell him for sure we are going to do it. Now that you got me thinking and wondering when that day comes around what we will do, in fact. Everyone, including my mother, brothers and nephews, are going to move into Jacob's house. At the same time, I haven't gone back to Jacob to let him know we are going to move in as well."

"That's exactly what I'm trying to tell you. If you do not go and tell him that we are for sure going to move with him, he might think we decided to move into the house we bought from him. We're going to live on the same side of town and go to the same school, but everything else that we have got used to will be gone. That is something I'll miss and don't want to lose. At the same time though, we made a promise to Jacob to buy that house from him."

"Yes, we made a promise that we'll buy that house from him and I have no plans on reneging on that promise. That doesn't mean that once we buy the house from Jacob, we can't sell it and move into Jacob's house. Or at least buy a house closer to Jacob's."

Matt sat back in his seat and stared out of the windshield as they drove down I-10. He agrees with what his boyfriend is saying. At the same time, he knows they need to sit down with Jacob and tell him that they decided on move in with him and the gang. There is no doubt in his mind that Jacob has already made plans as far as where everyone's rooms are going to be in the new house.

"I think we need to talk with Jacob and see what he thinks about this whole thing." Matt said in a very monotone voice. "After all he might have plans of his own as far as what's going to happen in the new house."

"That's true, but at the same time I think if we go and tell him that we decided to move in with him and the guys, he wouldn't object. In fact, I think he would love the idea of keeping all his friends under the same roof. The only thing that worries me is that house that we gave our word to buy."

While Alex and Matt were going back and forth about their living arrangements when the new house is ready, the guys in the back seat were listening. Chase understood their dilemma and had a few ideas to help them out.

"Hey guys, we all know Jacob really well. Some of us better than others and we know what we can tell him and what we can't. This thing about the house is something I know he won't have a problem talking about. I also know that if you go directly to him and tell him that you two decided to live with us, he will let you out of any deal you guys made about the house he bought from the old couple."

Alex looked into the rear view mirror at Chase for a few seconds and then over to Matt before returning his attention to the road. "What you said about Jacob is dead right. All that Matt and I need to do is tell him our thoughts about the new house issue. He'll listen to us like you said and most likely release us from the verbal deal we made to him. At the same time though, I don't want to do that to Jacob. He's forgiven me for a lot of shit and I don't want to damage our friendship."

"You won't be damaging your friendship with him by speaking honestly. I've known him since our freshman year. One of the things I can tell you about him is that he likes people to be upfront and truthful with him. At the same time, he doesn't like people doing things behind his back even if what they are doing is right.

What I'm trying to say is this, be upfront with him. After we get back to the hotel later on today, sit down and tell him everything that you and Matt were discussing here in the truck." Chase moved to the front of his seat and leaned forward. "I promise you if you do, he will be the one to offer to take the house back. You guys won't have to ask."

Neither Alex nor Matt responded to what Chase said immediately. They were weighing everything out because they wanted to make sure, before they said anything they had their thoughts put together. Neither of them wanted to sound like an idiot.

"You know what Chase, you're completely right. As soon as we get back, Matt and I will sit down and talk to him. He's been a very good friend to us. A friend I want to keep in my corner for the rest of my life. So we'll talk with him and be completely truthful during that conversation."

"We'll be truthful with him tell him our plans. Then leave it up to him to decide." Matt looked Chase directly in his eyes. "As you said and we all agree he'll want us to move into the new house with the rest of you. Heck! We all can't live without seeing each other's ugly mugs first thing in the morning."

Everyone cracked up laughing at the last thing Matt said. Seeing that he had broken the serious mood in the truck, Matt changed the conversation. He felt that the mood was getting too serious on a day when everyone should be happy and celebrating because they are going to get their new vehicles.

Just as they stopped laughing, they exited off the freeway. When they reached the lights on Executive Boulevard, they came to complete stop. Jacob waited for the light turned green before turning right onto Executive Boulevard. Once he turned, Alex followed and so did Joey in the truck behind him. The rest of the way to the Dodge dealership, they joked around and kept the mood as light as they could.

While the boys were making their way to the car dealerships, Lorenzo, Ismael and their two cousins were running around the hotel. It is rare for them to get the entire place to themselves since there's always someone there. Now that everyone went out with Jacob to get their cars, they can explore floors of the hotel that they haven't been able to.

The first thing they knew they had to do was get a master key card to the building. Their card only gives them access to their floor and the main floor. So in order for them to do the exploring they want to do they have to somehow get a hold of one of the main master cards, which won't be easy.

They first tried to go and get the key card from their mother, but she wouldn't put it down anywhere they could get to it. So they headed over to the box where they knew the cards were kept, but it was locked. Feeling defeated they sat down in the lobby trying to figure out what they can do in the areas they are allowed to go.

As they sat there thinking, Ismael came up with an idea. He got up from the seat he was sitting in and made his way to the few rooms on the first floor. His brother and two cousins followed him but had no idea what he had in mind. When they reached Marco's room, they knew what Ismael was up to.

He tried the doorknob and wasn't surprised to find it unlocked. All four of them quickly walked into the room and shut the door. Once the door was closed, Ismael walked over to the nightstand and started looking for Marco's card. When he had no luck at the nightstand, he made his way to the desk underneath the TV. The very first drawer, he opened, he found the card he was looking for.

With a big smile on his face, he turned around showing his brother and cousins what he found as if he'd won the World Series. They all started to laugh as they made their way to the door. Before they walked out, Ismael popped his head out to make sure no one was in the area. When he saw the coast was clear, he opened the door all the way and walked out with his brother and cousins right behind him.

When they were certain no one saw them coming in or out of Marco's room, they quickly made their way to the elevator. As soon as the door opened, they jumped in pushing the floor number for the floor above. The door closed, and when it opened again it was on a floor they have never been on.

They started to explore the floor, but got tired quickly because it was no different than the one they are staying on. Making their way back to the elevator they chose the floor below theirs. Once more, they got bored very quickly and made their way back to the elevator. They didn't see any difference between this floor, and theirs except that all the stuff for this floor was still in boxes.

As they were waiting for the elevator to open, they discussed where they wanted to go next. Lorenzo wanted to explore the top floor, but the others didn't. They were afraid if the judge would catch them in his penthouse, they would be sent to jail for a very long time. Lorenzo couldn't help but laugh at his little brother and two cousins.

"First, I wasn't saying let's go and explore the judge's penthouse. I'm not suicidal or stupid, but if we were caught there is no way, we'd go to jail for it. We'd probably get punished with no TV or video games for couple weeks, but we won't be sent to jail."

Lorenzo looked at the three younger boys with an evil grin across his face. "I say let's go and explore Joey and Caleb's penthouse. If they get back before we get out of that penthouse, they wouldn't say a word. They'd let us stay and explore more of their room, because they know we're not doing anything bad."

The three younger boys first hesitated to even answer Lorenzo let alone follow him to the elevator. When Lorenzo made it halfway down the hall, he turned around and waved his younger brother and cousins over to him. The three boys looked at each other for a few seconds before they started running down the hall. They ran past Lorenzo and didn't stop until they reached the other elevator.

When Lorenzo caught up, he used the key card on the gray panel, but the elevator door wouldn't open. He tried it a couple more times and again, the elevator doors didn't open. The boys just looked at each other, and then back at the gray panel and that is when they saw another panel next to the gray one.

They had no idea what the other panel did. All they know is that they don't have the access to the hotel they thought they did have with this master key card. Figuring trying a fourth time wasn't going to make a bit of difference. Lorenzo gave up and turned to his brother and cousins. Not giving them, any warning he started running back down the hallway. Ismail, Ignacio and Morris were not about to get beat in a race. They started running after Lorenzo and barely caught up to him when they reached the other side.

On their way back down to the lobby, they decided to explore all the rooms on the first floor. They saw several rooms that they have been wanting to explore since the first day they were there, but couldn't. Now that they have a few hours without anybody to catch them, they decided to take advantage of it.

At the same time while the younger boys were exploring the first floor of the hotel the older boys were getting to the car dealerships, Mr. Falster walked back into his office from doing his first rounds of the prison. Before he could even sit down his secretary informed him that he had a call. He tried to tell her to take a message, but she wouldn't. She kept telling him it was important.

Reluctantly, Mr. Falster picked up his phone. "Hello this is Captain Falster, how may I help you this morning?" There was no answer on the other end. Falster was about to yell at his secretary that there was no one on the line when he realized that he hadn't selected the line that she put the person on hold yet. Laughing to himself Falster pressed line two and repeated his greeting.

"Yes, Captain Falster my name is Michael Richardson, the Mayor of El Paso County." Falster sat back in his seat trying to figure out why the Mayor of El Paso is calling him, but before he was able to figure it out, he got his answer. "I know you don't know me, and I don't know you, but we have a mutual friend."

At first, Falster couldn't figure out who the Mayor was referring to. His mind was drawing a blank and the more he thought about it, the more he got lost. Right before the Mayor said the name of their mutual friend. It came to him.

"There has been a big shakeup in our local police force here and we need someone to come in and clean up the mess. I spoke with the Governor after I spoke with my own administration about who to place in our vacant chief of police position. All of us have come to an agreement that it has to be someone from the outside. That is the only way our police force will ever be trusted again by its citizens."

Mr. Falster knew where this conversation was heading and stopped it. "With all due respect to you Mayor Richardson, I can't hold the office of chief of police in El Paso County, because I don't reside there. I know that is one of the requirements in order for me to even think about running for that position. However, I do thank you for considering me. That is such a high honor."

"I know the law and what is required for each elected position in my city. With that said, late last night our city Council changed our charter and made the chief of police a non-elected position. In other words, it is appointed. Between the city manager and me, we select the person that we would like to have in that position. Once we make that selection, the person goes before the city council for approval.

We need a person in this position that can come in and clean up the mess the former chief of police left. At first, we tried to look in-house for that person, but the more we looked at our own police force the more we realized that it has to be someone from the outside. Simply put, if we were to select someone from within we would end up in the same position we are right now, and that's what we're trying to avoid.

We started to look elsewhere and called upon the Governor for help. He handed us a list of four names and on top of that list was your name. We looked at your past record, and agreed that you are the right choice for us. So let me formally offer you the position of chief of police for the El Paso County."

Falster had no idea what to say to the offer. He has met the man that is recommending him for the position only once and that was only for a few minutes. Nevertheless, here he is putting his name on the line for him. This is something that he's not used to because in the past he has always had to fight for the promotions that he got.

"I am honored and grateful to you for considering me for the position of chief of police in your County. I am not saying no, but I would like to think about it and talk it over with my wife before giving you an answer, if that is okay with you?"

"Of course you have time to think about all of this and we would want you to talk it over with your wife. You, your wife and the rest of your family needs to be involved in the decision-making because it is a big change. This isn't just moving your family, across town. You are moving your family hundreds of miles away from what they are used to."

Not meaning to, Falster started to laugh. "I'm sorry Sir; I didn't mean to be rude. The reason I was laughing is that we have just moved here for the job that I took at this prison. We haven't even fully settled in yet. If we to take you up on the offer and have to move, it won't be much of an inconvenience."

"I am glad to hear that because I have been turned down in the past on other positions due to the family's unwillingness to move. I still need to make it clear that it is going to be a change for your family. If you decide this is the right move. I promise you will have everything you need when you get here."

"Again, Mayor Richardson. I am not saying no, but I am not saying yes either. With everything you have told me so far I like it. Just give me a day or two to sit down and talk with my family. That is all I need is a couple of days, and you will have my answer."

Mayor Richardson didn't push Mr. Falster for an answer. He understood his request and left it at that. They talked a few more minutes about what Falster would be walking into if he does choose to take the job before hanging up. They also discussed the compensation offered which was a nice bump upwards for Falster. He had no problem with cleaning the mess up that was created by his predecessor. That is what he is doing right now here in the prison.

After hanging up with the Mayor of El Paso, Mr. Falster asked his secretary to call the Governor's Chief of Staff. A few minutes later, she came over the intercom to inform Falster that she has Mr. Serna on line one. He quickly picked up the phone and this time he did press the correct extension before he said hello.

"Before you go any further Mr. Falster, I know why you're calling. When the city council of El Paso started to debate whether or not to take the position of chief of police out of the hands of the voters, we started making a list. We were not sure if we were going to be called upon to help select the next chief of police if they decided to make it an appointed position, but we wanted to be ready. Your name was put on the list and was always at the top of that very short list."

"By you recommending me for the position of chief of police for the El Paso County mean that I will not become warden of this prison?"

"No, by us recommending you for that position doesn't mean that you won't be offered the position of warden. What it means is you have another avenue to look at. While you are looking at both avenues, I'd like you to think really hard about the two positions that are being offered to you.

The warden position is out of the hands of the Governor. He can recommend you to the board, but it is up to them on who they select for the position. The Governor merely signs off on their decision but it's more symbolic than anything else. They normally like to put one of their own running a prison.

Now the chief of police on the other hand is something that the Governor can help you get. If you say yes to this position, it's yours. The mayor likes you and the city council has already approved you. All that is left is for you to say yes and move your family to El Paso as soon as you can because that city needs a clean chief of police."

Al went into detail on what happened to the last chief of police. As he spoke, Falster listened closely. He couldn't believe that a person that was elected by the people got so greedy and dirty. In return, there is no doubt in his mind that those remaining in high command are probably just as dirty as their boss was. It's human nature that a person copies what he or she sees their bosses do.

"Well, I am very humbled on how much you and the Governor trust me. As I told Mayor Richardson, I need a couple days. I need to speak to my family before saying one way or another if I'm going take the position. In this last year I have already uprooted them and moved them into a new city without talking to them first."

"I certainly understand that and wouldn't have it any other way. Take the weekend and talk with your wife and the rest of your family. Come Monday, call me and let me know what you have decided before you call Mayor Richardson. That way if you decide against the position the mayor is offering you, we can do what we can to help you get the warden position that you're currently acting in right now."

Mr. Falster thanked Al once again for what he has done before hanging out. He leaned back in his seat thinking about the two positions he is up for. His entire career has been in the prison system and that is all he knows. He further thought it would be a great change to get out of the prison system to a position where he doesn't have to worry every minute of every shift that he will be being shanked.

On the other side of the prison, the elder Garcia was holding his own meeting with his leadership. He had just the night before received a kite from his boss about the loss of revenue from his prison. They didn't want to hear any excuses why. All they wanted to know is when they're going to get things back to normal.

"Hey, dammit hey!" The elder Garcia pounded his fist on the metal table trying to get everyone's attention. "When I talk no one else talks! Is that understood?" All the leaders around the table nodded their heads. "Good. I'm glad that I got your attention.

We have a problem that needs to get fixed immediately. I mentioned this problem a couple days ago when I first got back, but none of us has come up with a solution. Now is the time to fix the problem of control in this prison. Too many days have passed without us doing the business that we normally do with the general population."

The second in command spoke up first, which afterwards he regretted. "Alejandro, we are not the only ones not able to do business like we used to. Every single gang has been segregated from general population just like us. They're not making any money and are hurting even worse than we are."

Garcia got up and moved faster than anyone thought the old man could move. Before the second in command could react, his face was pounded into the metal table several times. None of the other leaders interfered with Garcia. They just stood back and watched as this older man took on a man almost half his age. When he was done, he wiped the blood that got on his hands on the back of the knocked out second of command.

"Do any of the rest of you have anything to add to what he just said?" Garcia slapped the back of his second in command's head as he walked back to his seat. "Good now it's time to get down to solving this problem instead of making excuses. Before we leave this table here today we are going to have a plan in place for getting back complete control of everything in this prison that we once had."

No one spoke up at first because they were afraid of getting the same treatment that Garcia gave his right-hand man, in case they gave him an answer he didn't like. As soon as the first person threw out an idea and Garcia talked it out, the others started throwing out their ideas. Before they knew it, they had several options to pick from that would give them what they once had.

"Out of all of the ideas thrown out, the one I liked the most is the one Joker suggested." Everyone looked at Joker, a younger version of Garcia. Their attention was pulled back to Garcia when he started speaking again. "The idea of recruiting new members into our gang but having them look like every other inmate here is a great idea.

The reason the guards here know who is a gang member and who isn't, is because we all shave our heads and have ink all over our bodies. We all look the same. That worked in the past, but not anymore. We have to adapt to the changes that are happening in this prison in order for us to keep control of everything.

This is what we're going to do from this point on. Whenever we get a new member, first, they will not be allowed to put ink on their bodies. They must stay clean as far as tattoos; Along with the way they dress, that must change as well. They can't shave their heads, wear their pants half off their butt or anything else that would raise suspicion that they are part of our gang. We must keep all of our new members out of this wing."

As Garcia laid out his vision of what the gang was going to look like, his commanders took notes. None of them objected or even added to what Garcia was recommending as far as the changes were concerned. When he was done, he opened up the floor for comments, but none of his leadership said a word. Just as Garcia was adjourning his meeting, his second in command was waking up.

Garcia raised his hand to hit his second-in-command again, but thought twice about it. Hesitantly he lowered his hand and walked away. He was so close to once again on hitting him, but knew that if he did his second in command would never have the respect of the others.

Meanwhile back with the boys, Tom and David had just got into their trucks to take them out for a test drive. They had no luck at the Dodge dealership where Chase was going to get his vehicle. He wanted a Dodge Ram, but out of all the Rams that were on the lot, Chase didn't find one that he liked. After spending over thirty minutes looking at trucks, they decided to continue. If he didn't find one that he liked at the other dealerships, they would come back and special order the one that he wanted at the Dodge dealership.

Reluctantly, Chase agreed because he didn't want to settle for a vehicle he wasn't going to be happy with. He wanted everything in the vehicle that he had in mind and if not, he wasn't going to get a vehicle. All the others agreed with him and made a deal with each other that they wouldn't settle either.

While David and Tom were out test-driving their trucks, Chase and Marco walked out of the showroom together. They wanted some time alone so they could talk. The other guys could see there was something going on between them, but decided not to embarrass them by asking if they are together. They know Chase is struggling with his feelings right now and he doesn't need them on his back teasing him.

Neither Chase nor Marco said a word when they first walked out of the showroom. They just walked in silence as they were looking at the new vehicles on the lot. By the time they got halfway down the first row, Marco broke the silence.

"I know you're confused and still lost on what you want and who you want it with. When we first started talking, I told you that I won't push you into something that you're not ready for. At the same time though, I won't spend years waiting for you to decide on what you want. That doesn't mean that I won't give you the time, because I will."

Chase looked over at Marco and knew that he was serious by the look on his face. He felt bad that he hasn't been able to really tell him what was in his heart; what he really, truly feels about this guy walking right beside him. For the first time since Ethan, he truly loves another guy, like he loved Patricia and his other former girlfriends.

"Marco, I'm not going to ask you to wait years for me to decide what I'm going to do because I already know what I'm going to do. Before I go there, I need you to understand something about me; about my past and what I have gone through with my former girlfriends." They stopped at the end of the row and leaned against the wall.

"My very first girlfriend got pregnant." Marco looked over at Chase with a stunned look on his face. He had no idea that Chase had a son or daughter out there. He knew that the guy he was falling for had girlfriends in the past, but he never knew that one of those girlfriends is going to be in their lives for a very long time.

"By the look on your face you looked disgusted at what I just said." Marco started shaking his head rapidly. "The girl I got pregnant didn't have the baby. When we found out that she was pregnant, we discussed all the options including abortion. However, at the end of the day we couldn't live with ourselves if we decided on killing our baby.

So we went to Jacob and Joey, they were together at the time, and I asked them for help. I knew my friend wouldn't turn his back on me, which he didn't. He immediately offered to pay for everything dealing with the pregnancy and the delivery. Then when we had the baby, Joey and he were going to adopt it.

My girlfriend and I were stunned that they offered to adopt our baby and we asked why. Jacob came back with a very simple and logical answer. He said that we were young and not ready to be parents, but at the same time the child deserves to someday meet their real parents and by them adopting our baby that will be able to happen.

We didn't hesitate to agree with Jacob and Joey and take them up on their offer. In fact, I loved it because I would be in my son or daughter's life. That is something my former girlfriend and I wouldn't have by putting our child up for adoption. Once that child is adopted, the maternal parents are no longer in the picture ordinarily."

Chase started to pace back and forth as he gathered his thoughts. "Anyway as I said we took Jacob and Joey up on their offer and moved on. Soon after that, my girlfriend and I broke up, but the offer was still place. We didn't fight and we didn't we get on each other's nerves because we knew once the baby came, we wouldn't have to deal with each other anymore except passing in the hallways at school."

Tears started rolling down Chase's face as he continued the story. "But that day never came. She ended up being rushed into hospital and losing our baby." Chase tried to hide the fact that he was crying by turning away from Marco. "Even though we never had a chance to see or get to know our son or daughter, I truly miss our baby."

No matter how hard he tried, Marco heard in his voice and saw in his body language that Chase was crying. He got up from the wall and walked over to him, wrapping his arms around Chase. They didn't say a word to each other for a few minutes. It wasn't because they didn't have anything to say. It was because more was said in their silence than they could ever say with words.

When Chase was finally ready to talk again, he didn't go back to the story he was telling Marco. He didn't realize how much he was actually still hurting over the loss of a child that he never had a chance to know; a child that never took their first breath out of the body of their mother.

When Chase spoke again, his voice was low and cracking here and there. "Now let me tell you about Patricia, my last girlfriend." Chase turned around and looked Marco straight in the eyes. "If you want to ask any of the guys about her, they would say she is a real bitch. At times, she was yet there were times she was totally the opposite of what people saw of her in public. I loved the person she was in private. At the same time I hated the person she was in public. Therefore, it was very hard for me to cut my ties with her.

Before I finally broke it off she did a lot of damage with my friends. Although she's no longer attending the same school, she is still out there. I am afraid that she will rear her ugly head once again. If she does come back, I don't think she will be as pleasant as she was before she was expelled from our school.

Out of the two girlfriends I have had in the past, Patricia is the one I worry about re-appearing. She is the one that would do the most damage and hurt the most people because she doesn't care. All she cares about is herself and getting what she wants and she will run over anyone that stands in her way.

So now, you know why I'm so hesitant about getting into another relationship. It doesn't matter if it's between me and a girl or me and you, I'm afraid. I'm afraid to open up again to find out the person I opened up to be just as worse as my former relationships were. I can't go through another bad relationship."

"Chase, I can't predict the future or what it holds for you and me. What I can do is give you a promise here and now that I will never knowingly hurt you. By the sound of it your first girlfriend was pretty good up to the end. Your second one, well let's just use the word the others have used to describe her, a bitch. Since I don't know her and haven't met her, I have to take your word about her.

With that said, I won't mistreat in any way like you have been in the past. At the same time I can't wait forever for you to decide what you want to do. If you know for sure right here and now that you can't give me an answer in the near future, I'd rather not go any further in a romantic way. That way we can at least walk away from this and stay friends. At the end of the day that is what I want if we can't be an item."

Chase pulled Marco to him to the point that they were almost inside each other. "I have already made up my mind and can give you an answer." Chase was shaking, because he knew what he was about to say was going to change his entire world. "I am willing to give it a shot because I truly have feelings for you; feelings I normally don't have for a guy, but I have for you. I love you, and not in the sense that a guy loves another guy as a friend, but in the sense how I loved my last two girlfriends."

The answer that Chase gave Marco put the biggest smile on his face that he ever had. He didn't care who was looking when he leaned in and gave Chase a full on kiss on his lips, their very first kiss as boyfriends. They both held it as long as they could so they could savor this moment when they became one.

The only reason they broke their kiss is because they knew that at any time the guys would be coming out looking for them and that Tom and David would be back from their test drive. Both of them were thinking the same thing. They don't want the guys to walk out and catch them kissing because they want to tell them in a setting of their own choosing. That way they can control the conversation.

They looked in each other's eyes and knew what the other was thinking. They grabbed each other's hands and started their way back to the showroom. Halfway down the row, they let go of their hands and continued along the way. Just as they got to the building, David and Tom drove up in their trucks.

Since they knew that the others were going to come right out, they stood back and watched as David and Tom got out of the trucks. They were so excited that they didn't see Chase and Marco standing there. Their minds were on their trucks and comparing them to each other's.

When they finally realized they were out there, the others walked out joining them. Chase walked up to Tom's truck and looked inside. It had everything he wanted in his Dodge, but it was a Ford. He was willing to take a Ford if they had another one just like that one, but they didn't. So for now he has to wait to see if there is a truck on Jacob's Chevy or GMC lots that he might like.

It took a little longer for them to figure out who was going to go with whom than anyone thought it would. Finally after going back and forth, Tom decided to take Thomas and David decided to take Adrian. Once that was settled, everyone got back into the other vehicle that they came in as Jacob explained where they were going next.

"Hey guys, we are going to go to Ole Chevrolet on Montana Street. So why don't you follow me. That way were not looking for each other or when we get there wondering where the others are at. Okay?" Everyone that was driving agreed as they got into their vehicles and started.

Alex pulled out of his parking spot, before waiting for Jacob to pull out and drive to the front. Once he did that, he got right behind Jacob. Behind him was Joey, followed by Tom and then David. When they were all lined up like a miniature convoy, Jacob pulled out to Mesa Street and drove slowly to the lights on Executive.

As they made their way to the freeway, Alex and Matt were talking about the vehicles they wanted to buy from the Chevy lot. They hadn't decided yet on whether or not it they were going to get a car or truck. With the kind of company they owned, they need to have trucks. However, at the same time they wanted a Camaro.

The entire way to the Gateway, they were going back and forth on what they wanted. Once they got onto the freeway, they were moving towards a middle ground when Tom and David passed them. Being a kid like Alex is he started honking his horn, rooting them on because he was happy that they were happy having gotten their trucks.

Just as Alex turned his attention back to the conversation he was having with Matt, they noticed Jacob speeding up and then honking his horn. Alex first thought that Jacob was playing around with David, but then David slowed down and moved into the middle lane and Jacob continued to gain speed until he caught up with Tom.

That is when the eighteen-wheeler on the westbound lane caught Alex's attention. He looked over at Matt and back at the other guys in the back seats before returning his attention to the oncoming eighteen wheeler. He saw that it was too late by the time Jacob caught up to Tom to warn him.

The eighteen-wheeler had busted through the median and was already in midair. Alex slammed on his brakes and was able to keep control of his SUV. When he came to a complete stop, he got out of the truck faster than he has ever done in his life.

When he turned to see what was going on with his friends, he saw the worst of it. David and Jacob were able to stop their vehicles in time, but for Tom it was too late. Just as Alex turned, the eighteen-wheeler was crashing down on top of Tom's truck. It didn't stop moving for almost another quarter mile. When it finally stopped everyone started running towards it.

They were unable to get to Tom and Thomas because the eighteen-wheeler had landed on its side blocking the entire freeway. As they stood there in awe of what was going on, several police cars with their sirens blaring came up right behind the eighteen-wheeler. Jacob started to yell at the officers, but they didn't seem to be in much of a hurry to get to Tom and Thomas.

That pissed Alex off. Along with Jacob and the other guys they started running towards that big semi. Jacob tossed his cell phone to Chase and told him something, but Alex couldn't make it out because his mind was on getting Tom and David out from beneath that damn big truck.

As fast as he could, Alex climbed onto the semi without a care for himself. He was in such of a hurry that he didn't notice that his right pant leg had caught on a piece of metal. He didn't feel the metal go through his jeans and into his calf. The only thing on his mind getting over that semi to his friends.

He made his way over the twisted wreckage and down to the street again without hurting himself anymore. When he got to the bottom of the wreck, he started to look for the truck but couldn't find it. It was Jacob who found the truck first and called everybody over to him for help.

At first, Alex couldn't tell what part of the truck they were looking at. It looked like it was the tailgate, but the more he looked at the more he saw it wasn't. He couldn't figure out how it happened, but they were looking at one of the doors. The entire cab of the truck was crushed, but not to the point that, if Tom and Thomas had dived to the floor, they wouldn't have been crushed.

Jacob without a care for himself started to pull at the truck door, but couldn't budge it. Alex quickly put his hands next to Jacob's and then the others follow suit. Between all of them, they were able to get the door to move enough that they could see in. Jacob fell to his knees and looked in to see if the guys were okay. The first thing he saw was a set of eyes looking back at him.

At first, he didn't know who the person was or if they were alive. Suddenly they heard the young voice of Thomas asking for help to get them out the truck. He was crying and begging for help. Hearing his cries, Jacob moved around with his back against the truck and his feet inside. With all of his strength, he kicked and pushed at the door, but it wouldn't move.

Alex looked around for some kind of bar they could use to wedge the door open. He didn't see one at first and then he saw a piece of one of the light poles on the road. Yelling at the others they went and grabbed the bar. As they walked back over to the truck with the bar in their hands, Jacob got up from the ground.

They wedged the bar in between the door and the cab of the truck, leaving them enough bar so they could all grab hold of it. At the count of three, they started pulling backwards on the bar, but it wasn't doing anything. At that point, Chase had got there and joined in, but even with his set of the hands, it wasn't moving the door at all.

Unwilling to give up, Jacob looked around and started yelling for help. Several onlookers joined in and with their help they were able to move the door enough that they could get to Thomas and Tom. Quickly they pulled out the pole and threw it to one side. Jacob and Alex dropped to their knees and looked into the truck.

This was the first time Alex saw Thomas laying there in tears. "Hold on we are going to get you and Tom out of there." Thomas cried out in agony for help. "I know you have to be in a lot of pain, but give me and Jacob a chance to get you out. The other guys are here and are ready to do whatever it takes to make sure you two get out of there."

No matter what Alex or Jacob told Thomas, he kept crying out for help, crying for them to get him and Tom out of there. Not trying to be rude to Thomas, both Jacob and Alex ignored him while they were working on getting him out. They found that the reason they couldn't just drag him out is because his leg was caught underneath the dashboard.

Jacob was the closest to the floor of the truck, so he crawled in. He slowly maneuvered around Thomas until he got to the leg that was caught underneath the dashboard. Before moving Thomas his leg or any other part of the truck, he wanted to make sure everything was safe. He didn't want any part of the truck to cave in and make things worse for all of them. Once he was sure nothing else would move, he turned placing his hands on the bottom of the dashboard.

"Alex I'm going to push the dashboard up and the minute I do that you need to pull Thomas out. I don't know how far I can push or how long I can keep it up. So you're going to have to do it as fast as you can."

Alex agreed with Jacob's plan. He moved over and placed his arms underneath Thomas' shoulders. Once he had him securely, he informed Jacob. Once more he counted down from three and with all his strength started to push up on the dashboard. As soon as Alex saw the dashboard moving up, he pulled him out of the truck with Thomas screaming and crying out in pain.

The minute he got him out of the truck, all those that were looking on started to applaud. Alex looked up and cursed underneath his breath at them. He couldn't believe that they were just looking and not helping. "There's another guy stuck in that truck that is going to need saving." He yelled.

While Alex and most of the guys were attending to Thomas, Chase and David made their way to the truck. As they knelt down they saw Jacob but couldn't see Tom. They yelled out to Jacob to see if he is able to see Tom, at first they didn't get an answer because Jacob was talking to Tom.

When they pulled out Thomas, the next thing Jacob saw was Tom looking back at him. Unlike Thomas, Tom wasn't in tears or crying out for help. Not hearing a word from Tom or seeing him moving at all got Jacob worried. He started thinking the worst, but then Tom spoke in a very soft voice.

"Get out of here Jacob, please get out. I'm stuck in here, but you're not. So please get out before you end up getting stuck in here like me or worse."

"I'm not going to get out of here without you Tom. It's my fault that you're here and there is no way I'm going to leave you. So stop telling me to leave and tell me how you are so I can figure out how to get you out in one piece."

Tom tried to tell Jacob to get out again, but Jacob put his fingers over Tom's mouth. "I won't hear any of this, you understand me? I mean it Tom the next words out of your mouth I want to hear is yes you understand me." Jacob removed his fingers and Tom said yes he understood.

With that, Jacob yelled back to Chase and David that Tom was awake and talking. David started to cry, not tears of sorrow, but tears of joy. He was happy to hear that not only Jacob found Tom, but also Tom was alive. After he got control of some of his emotions, he turned around and told the rest of the guys that Tom was alive.

Hearing the news that Tom was alive, Alex was able to put his mind to working with Thomas. He doesn't have any kind of medical experience or training, but some of the police officers that ran down to him did. They knew that by the look of Thomas' right leg it was at least broken, if not crushed altogether. Other than that, the only visual injuries they were able to see were all the cuts and abrasions all over Thomas' body.

Just as they started to splint Thomas leg, he lost consciousness. One of the officers immediately started CPR and brought him back. Alex started yelling at Thomas to not do that again to him. For the first time since he was pulled out of the truck, Thomas smiled back at Alex and raised his right thumb.

The EMT'S pushed their way through and started to examine Thomas. After connecting their machines to the young man, they realized this kid was in bad shape. He had more internal injuries than external. They looked up at Alex and the others informing them exactly what they found.

Not getting permission on whether or not that they could take Thomas to the hospital, they moved him on to the stretcher and then to the ambulance. When they loaded Thomas up in the back, they informed Alex where they were taking him, shut the door and sped off. Alex turned around and looked at the others.

Matt and the rest of the guys from the shelter decided to go with Alex. Dewayne, Chase, David, Joey and Caleb decided to stay back with Jacob and Tom. Once they were all agreed Alex and his group went running around the eighteen-wheeler and over to the SUV. They jumped in and pulled into the emergency lane.

Although they were going the wrong direction down the highway, no one, including the police, tried to stop them. When they reached the exit, a police cruiser drove in front of them and put on the sirens. The two vehicles went down the on ramp going in the wrong direction. The vehicles that were coming up the on ramp saw the sirens in time and pulled off to the side. When they got to a two-way street, the police cruiser fell back, leaving Alex to pass them as he got in the right lane.

Breaking all the speed limits and running a couple red lights, Alex rushed down to Providence Hospital. When they arrived, they parked in the very first parking they found, not caring that it was a designated employee parking spot. They got out of their truck and ran to the emergency room.

When they ran in, they immediately went to the information desk where there were two nurses sitting typing away at their computers. They looked up and knew who the young boys were because they saw them on TV when they were watching the breaking news of the accident. Alex and none of the guys had to say a word, the nurses immediately took them to Thomas.

Thomas was already in a bay being examined by several doctors and nurses. Alex and Matt tried to push their way in, but one of the doctors asked the nurses to take the young men back to the waiting room. They tried to object, but the doctors made it clear that they needed all the room that they could get without running into non-medical personnel. Not wanting to make things worse for Thomas, Alex and the others left of their own free will.

When Alex walked through the double doors into the waiting room, he couldn't believe his eyes that the figure walking towards him was the very man he has wanted to get his hands on. Here is the very man that had been terrorizing his family and him for months now.

Not wanting to lose this chance to get his hands on this guy, he quickly ran over to him grabbing him by the arm. Without much strength, he pushed him into the restroom and against the wall. As the guy's back hit the wall, he slid down until his butt was on the ground. He looked up and tried to speak, but Alex was on top of him.

"You fucker, you chicken shit mother fucker went around my little brothers and tried to be their friend, bullshit. You were there thinking about kidnapping them, I know that." Alex continued to hit Ashton over and over again on his face and upper chest. "You fucking mother fucker die! Why don't you just die and leave my fucking family alone."

Ashton tried to move his hands to cover his face, but he didn't have the strength. Alex was easily able to push them away and continue assaulting Ashton's face and upper body. He knew that if he didn't get away from Alex, he was a dead man. He tried to roll over onto his stomach and crawl away, but once again it didn't take much for Alex to keep him in the prone position.

Just as Ashton gave in, Alex's security agents pulled him off the battered man. Kicking and yelling, Alex tried to break free. It took three of his security guys to hold Alex down and the others to pull Ashton to his feet and out of the restroom. Once Ashton was no longer where Alex could get to him, the they let him go.

Angrily Alex yelled at his them, but deep down inside was thankful that they walked in when they did. Because if they didn't, Alex knows that he wouldn't have been able to stop. He would've ended up killing the man and going back to jail where everyone in his past life feels he belongs.

The security agents knew that Alex didn't mean what he was saying. They turned and walked out of the restroom, leaving Alex by himself to straight up. As soon as the door closed, Alex walked over to the mirror and looked at the reflection that was looking back at him. He was angry at that reflection because the person looking back at him was unable to keep control of that side of him he thought was gone.

Splashing water onto his face, Alex swore to himself that he would never again raise his hands in anger. He is proud of who he is today and doesn't want to go back to the person he was a year ago. That person settled all of his problems by threats and bodily harm. He thought with the love from his family and boyfriend all that was gone, but now he sees is still within him deep down inside.



{Welcome back everyone to another exciting filled chapter of "Beneath the Mask". I hope my hiatus from this story hasn't lost anyone to the story. It picked up with all the excitement and drama we left off with and a lot more came into this chapter. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did writing it.

Although I didn't pick up where the last chapter ended, it did get there. This story shares several plot lines with the other three stories and I had to make sure that it stayed on the same timeline as those stories. So when this chapter ended, it ended maybe a couple hours ahead of "Jacob Finding His Way", if even that.

Anyway, let me get to the summation of this chapter. At the beginning we got to see little bit more of Ashton. We saw how he was living and eating while on the run. I know many of you were wondering where he was sleeping and who was feeding him. Well in this chapter, you got the answers to those questions.

Other questions that have been thrown out there by you readers include, where, will Alex and Matt go once the new house is built. Well you got a partial answer there as well through the conversation that was going on between Alex and Matt. These two want to continue to live with Jacob and the other guys. If any of you are looking at the pictures that are being posted on the story pages, the answer to this question was answered in the pictures of the blue prints of Jacob's house. If you don't know what I'm talking about, go on over to "Jacob Finding His Way" story page and look at the pictures.

Moving on to the conversation that went on over at the prison: Mr. Falster got a call from the mayor of El Paso offering him the chief of police position. It was explained how that was possible. The only question I have is will Mr. Falster accepts that or try to get the warden position. I truly hope he accepts the chief of police position because he would make an excellent chief of police.

The elder Garcia is not going to go away quietly. He wants the same control over the prison that he once had when they were in general population. It looks like they have come up with a great plan, but I only wonder if they can get away with it. Even if they can, I wonder how long it will last. For those answers gentleman and ladies, you will have to tune into the future chapters of this saga.

If any of you were wondering where Chase was going to end up at as far as his love life is concerned, the wondering is over. It looks like he is going to give a relationship with Marco a chance. I really hope it works out for him and they end up together for the rest of their lives. The only thing I see that can go wrong here is that Chase might go back to wanting to be with women.

Okay guys, we are now at the accident that was started in the Jacob saga. You got a little bit more information about the accident here, but you don't have it all. First Thomas was pulled out, but he has internal injuries that could end his life. Secondly, Tom is still stuck in that truck. Keep in mind you guys I am a very evil author and I like to throw wrenches in whenever I can. So don't think that you have the answer that Tom is going to be safe, because that hasn't been written.

Finally we see the ending of Ashton or is it? The dumb idiot walked into the hospital at the same time that Alex was there. I know I don't need to explain in this corner why he walked in. The guy was in a bad accident and was sleeping in the sewers. All of his open wounds have been infected because of where he was sleeping and what he was eating. The only question that is left will this be the last of Ashton. He has been very lucky so far, but it looks like his luck has run out.

I know a lot more happened in this chapter and if I missed any of it, Trevor and Rick will cover it in their corners. In addition, there are a lot of open plots still dangling out there that will come back and as well a whole lot of new ones. So please stick around as I have said and keep on reading. I hope that you all enjoyed what you have read and will keep coming back week after week to this saga.

I don't want to say too much more and spoil the future chapters to come, so I will not. 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 jacob@jacobmillertex.com, Thanks!}


Considering this chapter only covered a few hours a lot happened. The excitement of buying trucks and cars we already knew about including the accident. Jacob must be getting a bit soft giving you part of the answer to Jacob's cliffhanger in advance, but don't expect that to happen too often. Plus not all the answers were there.

It must be boring for the younger members of Alex's family being stuck in that hotel all the time. Maybe now that Ashton has been caught they can get outside once in a while to play, without getting into too much trouble.

Personally, I thought it was a forgone conclusion that Alex and Matt would be living with the others forever. I must admit I forgot about the house deal but I'm sure Jacob, Alex and Matt will come to an amicable agreement.

Chase and Marcos are going to be together by the look of it, and I wish them well. Being bi-sexual I know Chase will have problems coming to terms with their relationship, but I believe Marcos is caring and decent enough to help his new lover.

If I was Alex I would have done exactly the same as he did when he spotted Ashton, it was lucky that he was pulled off before he did kill him. Jail time for Alex would have been a death sentence I'm sure and let's not forget how devastated Matt would have been, along with his mother and brothers.

Last but not least the accident. Details are still sketchy and we have no idea if anyone is going to be killed. I hope not, there are too many deaths on our roads as it is and even one that is fiction is one too many.

Please let us know what you think of this and all our other chapters.





This chapter was such a page turner, I had to stop reading and remember I'm supposed to be EDITING! Usually I can do both the reading and editing in one pass. Not this time!

As usual, Jacob and Trevor really hit the highlights of the Chapter leaving me little room for comment!

I wish I knew more about Marco. I'm trying to get a sense if he's got the strength and depth of character to take Chase on. If there's a chance of those two making a life together I see that Marco will have to be the alpha dog in the relationship. Chase has a lot to process yet. He's not sure just where his true reality lies. Now, should Chase vacillate and have a wandering eye towards a woman, I don't think Marco will have any patience with that. He's already made statements that he can be patient but things have to be moving in the right direction. He's not going to tolerate being jerked around. I hope that Chase got that message and will give his all to the relationship. If he doesn't, he's going to be hurt again, but this time it will be by his own doing if that happens.

Alex's younger brothers and nephews are going to be a handful! Right now I see the adults not catching on to their budding adventurous natures. I hope that the adults get their snap before the boys get themselves into a jam.

At the scene of the accident, where are the first responders? There was an ambulance there to transport Thomas, but where the rescue squad and what are the police doing? It appears they have their thumbs up their...well...they aren't doing what I think they should be!

Just like you, I'm going to have to wait patiently <HA!> to find out the outcomes for Thomas and Tom. It's going to be a long week.

Until Next Time,

"Daddy" Rick