Written by: J.P.G.

{Regrets and Heartaches 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 a underage, (according to your state laws as 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 can't be distributed in any way, shape or form without the author's expressed written consent. I want to give a shout out to a reader that has helped me with ideas for the story. Thank you!}

Story Written by: J.P.G.

Edited By: "Daddy" Rick

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/ Story Written by: J.P.G.


Chapter 26

Chris arrived to school at the same time he normally does. After dropping his books off at his locker, he made his way to the cafeteria to join the others. The topic at the table was the same as it has been the last couple of days, so his mind started to wander. As he was in his own little world, a new group of kids caught his eye at Jacob's table.

He looked each of them over as they were being introduced. There was no doubt that some of the kids were gay. A few of them were straight as an arrow and any blind man could see that. Others, Chris couldn't be sure. And then he got to the last person, and he couldn't help but feel for the kid.

There he stood in cast, bruises and cuts all over his body, at least the parts Chris was able to see. His face was turning back to normal color, but anyone could see that the poor kid looked like he had been run over by a truck, and then whoever was driving the truck decided to back it up and run him over again.

Not wanting to make the kid feel uncomfortable, Chris turned his attention back to the conversation that was going on at his table, but he couldn't keep his mind there. He kept looking over at the new kid. Every time the kid looked up, he would quickly turn his attention either to the conversation or back to his tray. However, the third time the kid looked up, Chris knew he was caught, but couldn't stop looking at him.

He quickly looked back down to his tray, but he couldn't keep his gaze there. Chris looked back over at the new kid and once again he was caught. This time he didn't turn his attention away from the kid, which he knew he was making the new kid very uncomfortable. The new kid looked around to make sure that he was the one that Chris was looking at.

Chris wanted to convey that he was not meaning him any harm. So when the kid turned his attention back to Chris, Chris tried to send him non-threatening, friendly looks. The reaction he was getting, Chris knew the new kid understood that he was not in danger, at least not from him. There was no doubt in Chris's mind that this poor kid had been in either some kind of accident or someone had used him as a punching bag. Whatever happened, he wanted to assure the kid he had nothing to worry about from him.

Not breaking his gaze, Chris looked over the new kid. Every so often the kid would look up from his tray, but almost immediately look back down. By the time he got up and headed out the cafeteria with the other new kids, Chris knew he freaked the guy out. As he walked out, he didn't even look once his direction.

All morning long, Chris could only think about the kid he saw at Jacob's table. He wondered what happened to him. Why he and the others transferred to his school so late in the year. There were so many questions going through Chris's mind, he was not paying attention to his instructors.

When he was called to go to the board during second period and do equation on the board, he was lost. The teacher had to call out his name twice, but even when he came back to reality, he had no idea what the teacher wanted from him.

Slowly he got up from his desk, and walked over to the board and looked at the problem. The teacher barked out that he doesn't have all day. Chris looked over shoulder and shot his teacher a dirty look before turning his attention back to the problem. Picking up the chalk, he quickly did the problem and sat back down.

"Well, you knew how to do that problem, but there is going to come a time that you won't know how to work out a problem, so stop day dreaming in my class." The instructor whispered in Chris's ear as they passed each other in the row that led to his desk. Chris just nodded his head and continued to his desk.

Trying not to daydream, as his teacher put it, Chris looked forward and listened to his instructor, but it didn't last long. About fifteen minutes of listening, his mind started to go back to the kid he saw during breakfast. He wanted to get to know the kid. Not because of the cast and bruises on the kids body. No, he wanted to get to know him because there was something about the guy that grabbed Chris and he can't let it go.

His day dreaming continued through third period. Luckily Chris didn't get caught by his teacher like he did in second period. So when the bell rang, excusing them for lunch, he was thankful. As fast as he could, he made his way to his locker, tossed in his books and started his way to the cafeteria. However, Angel caught up to him and started talking to him. He didn't want to be rude, so he paid attention to his friend and got into the conversation.

They talked all through the line and as they made their way to the table. The conversation didn't stop when they sat down. It went on for another ten minutes until they joined in the conversation that the others at the table were in. Chris got into that conversation for about five minutes, but his mind and eyes drifted over to Jacob's table.

Immediately he found the kid in the same seat as the first time he saw him in the morning. He didn't mean to stare at the guy, but he couldn't help it. The new kid just had something that drew him in. He knew under all those bruises, cuts and cast, there was a very cute guy. A guy he could see himself with.

Just like then morning, Chris was caught, but unlike the morning, he didn't try and hide the fact that he was starring. After ten minutes or so, Chris could see he was making the kid uncomfortable. He wouldn't look at him directly, but Chris did catch him several times looking at him. The kid tried to hide it by not looking directly him, but through the corner of his eye, but Chris caught it.

When Jacob got up to leave, Chris thought the others would follow, but they didn't. They stayed there for another few minutes and then got up. Chris followed the kid as he made his way out of the cafeteria. After losing him, he really wanted to get up and catch up to the kid and introduce himself, but he chickened out.

Instead he turned his attention back to the others. Angel knew something was up, and wanted to ask, but he decided to stay away from whatever it was. He was happy that Chris was talking to him, instead starring off to the distance.

When they finally got up and headed out to the stadium, Chris kept looking around for the kid, but couldn't find him. He knew Jacob's friends came out to the stadium as well and where they stood, but he didn't see the new kid that had intrigued him from the moment he had laid eyes on him.

Not wanting to, Chris gave up and tried to get back involved into what was being discussed. Every so often, he would look over to Jacob's friends to see if he could at least catch a glimpse of the kid, but he didn't see him. So when it was time for them to head in, Chris decided it was either now or never to talk to the guy.

Separating from the others, Chris went up the stairs looking for the guy that has captivated him all day. Getting a little frustrated, Chris was about to give up when he heard laughter right in front of him. Taking a closer looked, he saw the guy on the left hand side of the group that was laughing.

With a big smile on his face, Chris pushed his way through the other students that were between him and the guy he wants to meet. A few of the students didn't like to be pushed to the side, but didn't do or say anything. They let Chris through, but wondered why he was in such of hurry.

When he reached the guy he was trying to get to, he was a little nervous, but he didn't let that stop him. When Chris tapped gently on the guy's shoulder, he turned around. Chris could see the guy looked confused and a little afraid, so he quickly extended his hand. He wanted the guy to know that he was not there to hurt him. He was there to try and become his friend, and hopefully if he is like him, boyfriends somewhere down the track.

"Hello, I am sorry for freaking you out all day. When I saw you the first time this morning, I wanted to meet you. My name is Chris, what is your name?" The kid just looked at Chris for what seemed like eternity, but what was only a few seconds. "I know you think I am weird or something, but trust me I never do this. I normally keep to myself, but there is something about you that I just had to come up and meet you."

The kid smiled at Chris as he took his hand. "My name is Aaron, nice to meet you Chris!" The boys smiled at each other as they shook hands. "I would be lying to you if I said that you didn't freak me out with the way you were staring at me all day. I was about to ask the others who you were and if I should be worried about you."

Chris chuckled. "I am sorry for all the staring. That's why I came up to you and introduced myself. I saw that I might have ruffled your feathers. I didn't want you to think I was this weird guy wanting to hurt you something like that." Aaron walked to his locker, followed by Chris. "If you would ask any of my friends, hell anyone here at school that knows me, I never do what I am doing right now, never!"

Aaron turned and smiled at Chris as he pulled down his combo lock. "I believe you. If I didn't, I wouldn't have started talking to you, or even shook your hand if I felt I was in danger." Aaron pointed his fingers to his body where there was a cast or bruises. "As you can see, it took someone to teach me how to read people."

Chris's stomach sunk when Aaron said that. He thought that someone had hurt him, but he didn't want to believe it. He wanted to believe that maybe Aaron had fallen or something. The kind of injuries the guy has can't happen in a fall. It can only happen through a beating of some kind.

"I am sorry to hear that, I wish..." Aaron jumped in. "Don't be sorry and worry about what you see. It took a group of kids to open my eyes to the truth and reality of how the world works. It's crappy out there and I need to learn how to survive in that world, not the one that I created in my mind."

Just then the first warning bell rang. The boys stood there looking at each, waiting for the other to say something. Finally Chris broke the silence between them by asking Aaron for a piece of paper. Aaron reached to hisn'tebook and pulled one out and handed it to Chris. Chris smiled as he wrote down his phone number and handed it back to Aaron.

"Again I know you don't know me, but I really hope you'll call me. I would like to get to know you if you want." Chris started to walk off, but remembered one thing he promised himself that he was going to say whenever he meets someone new. "By the way, I am gay, so if you know you can't stand gays, tell me now and I won't get my hopes up that you might call me tonight."

Aaron shook his no as he watched Chris walk down the hall. Chris looked back once more before turning the corner and winked at Aaron and then disappeared. Joey patted him on the shoulder and asked if he was okay. Aaron couldn't say anything, he just nodded his head. He never thought that he would meet someone like Chris so soon.

Pulling himself out of his daze, he followed Joey to their fourth period class. The rest of the afternoon went by fast. Aaron thought about Chris, and even started writing Chris' name on hisn'tebook. Whenever someone looked over to see what he was doing, he covered up hisn'tebook or paper that he was drawing on.

When the final bell of the day rang, he hoped to run into Chris, but he didn't. The others wanted to get back to the hotel, so he couldn't buy any more time. Slamming his locker door shut, Aaron spun the dial and walked out with the others to Joey's truck. He looked back a couple times hoping to see Chris, but again no luck.

All the way home, all they talked about was how big El Paso High School was. The conversation only stopped when they dropped off one of Joey's friends, but once the truck started moving again, they picked right up where they left off. Aaron looked down at the sheet of paper that Chris wrote his name and phone number on, ignoring what was going on in the truck. With his right index finger, he traced Chris' writing. As he thought of Chris, he actually smiled for the first time since what had happened to him.

The others in the truck saw Aaron smiling, but didn't ask him what has him so happy. They were happy enough to see him finally smiling, they didn't want to destroy the moment. Instead they went back to their conversation, and when they got to the hotel, they continued on with what they were talking about as they walked in.

Before Joey and Cesar could make it up to their penthouse, Mr. Jackson stopped them. "Joey, I need to talk with you about something very important." Joey looked at Mr. Jackson as if he was out of his mind. "It can't wait any longer sir. I need to talk with you, Judge Evans and Mr. Serna, and I would like to do it right now if possible."

"Well I have no problem talking with you right now, but Judge Evans might not be here yet, and Mr. Serna is in Austin working with the Governor. So whatever you need to talk about, you might have to wait until later this evening until at least Judge Evans is available. I really don't think we will be able to get Mr. Serna in this conversation."

Mr. Jackson opened the door to the restaurant for Alex and Caleb. "I have already spoken with Mr. Serna and he has blocked off an hour right now to be in this conversation. Judge Evans is here and is waiting over there for us." Mr. Jackson pointed to a table in the corner of the restaurant where Harold was sitting. "I had a phone run to that table so we can have some privacy as we talk."

Joey nodded his head as he and Caleb walked over to the table. They sat down and waited to see what Jackson was going to do. They didn't have to wait too long. He picked up the receiver and dialed a number. Once it started to ring, he put the phone on speaker. It wasn't long until they heard Al's voice come over the line.

"Good afternoon everyone!" Everyone took turns greeting Al. "I understand we have a problem with a few things over there with the shelter and we need to sit down and figure out how to solve the problem." Al continued; "Since I was not the one that called this meeting, let me turn it over to Mr. Jackson!"

"Thank you Al, let me start by..." Harold interrupted Mr. Jackson. "I really don't understand why we are having this meeting. If Mr. Jackson has a problem with something, he should bring it up to me and Joey, and we will address it as needed. There is no need for you to be bothered about any of this Al."

"Right now that the hotel is still under Jacob's and my name, I need to be involved in all conversations. Even when the hotel is transferred under Joey's name, I still need to know what is going on since I am the one telling the Governor that these are good programs. If there is a problem, I need to know about it so I can jump in front of it before it gets away from us. So again, Mr. Jackson please continue."

"Once again thank you Al, and before I was interrupted, I was going to say I am sorry for springing this meeting on everyone. It's just I have seen a lot of things in the last couple of days that don't sit right with me. So I felt that we needed to sit down and talk it now that we can by choice, rather than when we are forced to do so."

Mr. Jackson looked around the table. "This hotel started out as a shelter for gay teens. I understand why there is a need to bring in other programs here. Hell, just to keep the lights on in this place has to be costing an arm and a leg. So by having state sponsored programs, it helps pay for the day to day operations.

With that said, we can't continue to allow things to run the way they are running right now." Harold and Joey looked at Jackson with confused looks on their faces. "Let me explain before you guys jump the gun and go somewhere I'm not going with this conversation.

First, we have Jacob and his group in here. Jacob is a target, just like you Joey. Not only because you guys are gay, but because you guys are rich. There are assholes out there that see you guys as a quick buck. They might try and kidnap you guys for ransom. We have taken positive steps here to make sure the place is secure, but we are far from where we need to be. And now with all these new kids coming in and out, Jacob, his group, Joey and your group are at even greater risk."

Jackson pointed towards the wall, which on the other side is the front door. "We have locked that front door and the only ones allowed to get in now are those that have a badge. However, the new kids that have been sentenced to live here stand there holding the door open or they put a rock, book or something to keep the door open so they don't have to swipe their badge again.

My team and I aren't here to baby sit them. We keep telling them that they can't do it, but yet we find the same ones doing it over and over again. Therefore, that leads me to this idea to fix that. Those kids aren't allowed to use the front entrance anymore or the main elevators of the hotel."

"Wait a minute, wait a damn minute there Mr. Jackson." Judge Evans started to yell as he got up from his chair. "Where to you want them to enter and exit this place, their windows?" Jackson could see he angered Harold, but he hasn't even started.

"No sir, not their windows, but the rear of the hotel where they aren't getting in the way of the others coming and going." Just then Sally walked in and joined the group. "Plus by them using those doors, we have more control over it because they are near one of the guard stations. If they leave the door open, a guard can go out and shut it right away."

Sally patted Harold on the shoulder, trying to calm him down. "Mr. Jackson has brought up all the problems to me that he and his staff are having with those that are being placed in the halfway house program. I agree with him that we need to fix it, but how, I didn't have the answer. So that is why I am supported him on calling this meeting."

"Sally, are the kids that are being sentenced to the halfway program keeping the doors open like Mr. Jackson is saying?" Al spoke for the first time since he let Jackson take over the meeting. "I mean, aren't there procedures in place that keeps those kids up on their floor when they are in the hotel unless they are eating or has business down there?"

"Al, all of them have to be up on their floor at the same time, at six. Prior to that, they are free to do what they want to do."

"I understand that Harold, but what's worrying me, and I am sure that is what's worrying Jackson is those kids' old friends. The residents might not want to harm any of the other kids in the hotel, but we can't say, with any assuredness, the same about their friends. They aren't sentenced there and can afford to mess up because they won't be revoked and sent back to jail immediately like those that live there in the halfway program."

"Al, that is one concern I have, but the other is that some of the kids that have been sentenced to this halfway program are the same kids that hurt one of the kids that are in the gay shelter." Mr. Jackson looked over at Harold. "Come on, put yourself in their shoes. Every time these poor kids that were hurt by one of those in the halfway program sees them, they have to relive that day. That isn't right or fair to them."

Harold understood and agreed with Jackson. He believes in his halfway program so much and he is putting in kids that he knows will benefit from it. At the same time, he never thought of the others that have to see their attackers every day. Not only they see them, but they have to live with them as well. That has to give them nightmares.

"Hey, I have been thinking about what might go wrong with having the shelter and the halfway program in the same place." Joey spoke up. "We all agree that we need all the programs that the state has given us in order to keep the doors open. At the same time, we agree that there are problems that need to be fixed immediately.

So this is what I was thinking." Joey looked at Mr. Jackson. "I agree that the kids from the halfway program use the back entrance and they use the back elevators also. There are two back there, so they will never be waiting very long to get up to their rooms. At the same time, they are told that if they are caught putting something to keep the doors open or they themselves keep the doors open, they are going back to jail."

Harold, liking Joey's solution said; "While we put this into play, Mr. Jackson, you hire me a security staff for the hotel. Those men and women work for me and no one else, but you train them. This will mean when Jacob and the others leave, I'll have a security staff trained and already running the day to day operations."

"I have no problem whatsoever with that. Just tell me how many men you want and when you want them and I will get done. In the meantime, my men and I will work with you to make sure what we decided here is followed out there."

"Good, you and I will get together after the meeting, okay?" Joey looked at Jackson and got a positive response. "Now that is just the beginning of what I think we need to change. Those guys need to eat, but there is only one restaurant here. So I think they eat at the tables over there." Joey pointed to the far side of the restaurant. "The rest of this place is for everyone else. If they try to step over here, they are taken down. This will help out with the guys in the shelter feeling fearful every time they see their attacker."

Al was heard chiming in; "You know what Joey? I have no problem with any of what you are suggesting. I can see now that you have grown up a lot in the last year and there is no need for me to really be in this meeting. The hotel is yours, do what you feel needs to be done to keep things running smoothly. Just do me a favor and let me know what is going on at least once a week, okay? I still need to be able to get in front of things before they get out of hand should there be any challenges."

"That isn't a problem grandpa. I will make sure to do that." Al thanked Joey and bid everyone goodbye before leaving the conversation. "I know we all want things to go a certain way with our programs, but we are using the same building. So we need to learn to get along, or none of our programs are going to work.

Mr. Jackson is head of security of this hotel, just like he is for The Angel Corporation. At least that is until he hires the security staff for this place and chooses who is going to be head of security here. Until then, he has full authority do whatever he feels needs to be done in order to keep everything in line. If any of us have a problem with that, or anything that was discussed so far, speak now."

Joey looked around the table, but didn't see anyone wanting to jump in. Just as he was going to call the meeting to an end, Sally spoke up. "Joey as you know I was working on benefits for David." Joey nodded his head. "Well I found that the other kids in your shelter get benefits from the state. I was wondering what you want me to do with these benefits. Give them over to the kids in the shelter, put in a bank account, or do you want the money since they are staying here in the hotel?"

"No leave all that alone." Joey almost yelled. He was a little angry with her for not checking in with him about something like that. "I mean, Al and I discussed all that before we moved down here. He set it up so where we get money from the state for providing room and board. They can't double dip getting money from the state."

"I am sorry, I thought I was helping." Sally looked over at the others at the table for some help. "If you want to take care of things for your kids, I will leave all that in your hands. From this moment on, I will stay far away from that stuff."

Feeling like crap on the way he responded, Joey thought quickly on his feet what he could do to make it clear to her that she is helping. "Sally, I am sorry for jumping on you like I did. You did right by looking into that for me and the others here in the shelter. I am sure the state will see that they are already giving us money for them. If there is any money left from what the state pays us for them, put it in their account. After all, it is their money and they should get what is over paid to us."

Sally agreed with Joey and thanked him. "I have an idea." At first no one knew who just spoke until they looked at Caleb and saw him waving his hand. "Yes it is me talking over here. Like I said, I have an idea. We have this huge restaurant just sitting here and we aren't using it." Caleb grabbed everyone's attention.

"Well, I say we open this place up by offering jobs to everyone in the shelter. It gives them a chance to earn money, and at the same time it allows the shelter to earn a little money with something it already has. It is a win-win situation all away around."

Everyone jumped in and started to give their ideas on how Caleb's idea could work. Before they knew it, they put together a list of how things might work. Harold even threw in that some of those that are in the halfway wing could actually get job, at least those that aren't a threat to others with things that they will use in the restaurant.

Once everyone out in their two cents in on opening up the restaurant to the public, no one had any more new business to bring up. Joey thanked everyone for being patient and working through the problems and then adjourned the meeting. Jackson, Harold and Sally left, but Joey and Caleb stayed since it was almost time for them to eat.

After dinner, Joey was beat and was not up for anything else except his pillow. He started to head upstairs when Fran stopped him. Before she got out a word, he knew what she was going to ask; the adoption. So he tried to cut her off before she even began, but she didn't let him. She started to go over what she did the other night, and when she finished, she asked her brother if he'd come to a decision.

"I thought I told you when you first told me about your idea I was down." Joey looked at his sister confused by what she was asking. "I need to get with Harold and see where we need to go and get this done. Right now I don't know if we have to go back to New Mexico since that's where he adopted you or if we can do it all here."

"When do you think you will be able to talk with Harold about all that?"

"Well if tomorrow is like today, it won't be then. I was tied up in a meeting with Harold and a couple others talking about the shelter. It was a long-ass meeting and all I want to do right now is go to bed. I never thought meetings like I had this afternoon was that draining, but boy they are. How Jacob, Al and the others that have meetings like the one I had today several times a day, I will never know."

Fran started to laugh. She could see that her brother was dead on his feet because he was wobbling back and forth. Feeling bad for him, she dropped the subject and let him go with a promise that they will touch base tomorrow. Joey had no problem with that, thanked her as he made his way to the elevator.

After breakfast the next morning in Alamagordo, Dominic was called out of his cell. He had a visitor. The only one that came to his mind that would be visiting him would be his attorney, and he was right. When he passed the regular visitation rooms, he knew he was heading, the to the attorney visitation rooms.

The guards made him face the wall as they unlocked the door to let him in. He was surprised to see two attorneys sitting there on the other side of the glass. One he knew, his court appointed attorney, and the other he has never seen before. He knew something was up, because there were two attorneys sitting there and the look they had on their faces told him that they had bad news.

"Mr. Vogan, lay it on me. What is the bad news you have come here to deliver me here today?" Dominic asked as he sat down on the cold metal chair. "By the look on your face, you are about to tell me that my dog died, which he did, so don't worry about how I am going to take whatever you have to say, just say it."

"Well Dominic, as I said from the get-go, you have enemies that no one would ever want. Not only have the judges here wanted to see you rot behind bars for the rest of your life, but there are others that want to see the same thing; one of which is the Governor of Texas. He and the Governor of New Mexico have become good friends and Governor Lopez has called on their friendship to have you transferred to the Texas courts." Mr. Vogan showed the extradition papers to Dominic through the window.

"Can he do that?" Dominic nervously asked as he looked at the extradition papers. "I mean I thought that since we lived here in New Mexico and did the crime here, we will be tried here. If they take me down to Texas, who knows what they will do to me? Texas is well known for executing people pretty regularly."

"Mr. Alvarez, you have the wrong idea about Texas." The older guy next to Mr. Vogan spoke. "My name is Scot Marker, and I will be taking over your defense since Mr. Vogan here isn't licensed in Texas and I am." Dominic looked at Mr. Marker as if he was out of his mind, and he saw it. "I know what I am saying is throwing you off, so let me try and explain everything to you as best I can.

I practice law in El Paso Texas. When Governor Lopez got the Governor of New Mexico to transfer your case to the Texas courts, I was appointed as your attorney. I came down here as soon as I was able to, which was today." Dominic interrupted Mr. Marker asking him when he was told that he was taking of the case. "Tuesday, but I had court appearances all week that I had to do. Today was the last day I would be able to talk with you before they came up to take you back to El Paso."

"Is there any way I can fight this?" Dominic looked at his attorneys with a panicked look on his face. He didn't want to go to Texas because he knew their laws were a lot stricter than they are where he is at right now. His knows that his best chance of getting off is by being tried in the courts in New Mexico, not in Texas.

"Mr. Alvarez as Mr. Vogan just said, you have all the wrong people gunning for you. Not only did you go after a teenage gay boy and kidnap him, but you took him over the state line into Texas. By doing that, you brought out the camps in Texas that Governor Lopez thought that he had gotten rid of. He doesn't like looking bad.

Not only that, he has a gay son. He doesn't believe what you believe in as far as being able to make a gay person become straight. Right now he is working on getting his gay rights bill passed and by having you tried and convicted in his state will go a long way toward getting that done. In other words, the short answer, no there is no way to fight this."

"Dominic, you and I knew that we had a uphill battle on even getting you acquitted here, it is going to be even harder for Mr. Marker to get it done."

"Why are you telling me this? Are you trying to scare me? If you are, you are doing a damn good job!" Dominic slammed his fist against the metal desk. "I don't want to go to Texas. Do whatever you have to do in order to stop the extradition! Do you hear me?" Dominic got up and started to pace back and forth. "Do you understand what I am saying?" Dominic yelled at his attorneys.

"I am sorry Mr. Alvarez that is one thing we can't do. You will be picked up by several county sheriffs sometime today and transported back to El Paso. When you get there, you are going to be taken to the county jail downtown and stay there until you go in front of the Honorable Judge Garcia. He is the one judge that you don't want to go in front of because he is tough and goes by the letter of the law."

Dominic felt a little relieved hearing that Harold was not his judge. "Well, if it's all said and done, I'd better get back to my cell and pack the few things I have to pack." Dominic walked over to the door and started knocking on it. "Mr. Vogan since I am going to be transferred to Texas, this is going to be the last time I see you, right?"

"Yes, but I will stay involved in your case since Mr. Marker here is going to need things from our records." Mr. Marker tapped on the window. "Dominic please come back over here and sit down so I can explain what you are looking at." Dominic turned and did as he was asked. "I know all this is hitting you from out of left field, but don't do anything stupid. You didn't do anything that warrants the death penalty, so you won't be sentenced to death row. If found guilty, the longest you will serve in prison is ten to fifteen years for the top counts and two to five years on the lesser counts."

"What Mr. Vogan is saying is right. If you are found guilty, I will ask the judge to run your sentences concurrently, which means you will get out of jail in eight years." That peaked Dominic's interest. "If we get the judge to do that, with good behavior, you will be out in eight years, not fifteen. However you will have to serve the remainder of your sentence on parole in Texas. If you mess up in anyway, they will send you back to serve the remainder of the sentences."

"Trust me when I say I don't plan to mess up if things go the way you are hoping." Dominic had a grin from ear to ear. "If you are able to deliver what you are saying, I will make sure I am the model prisoner."

"Good, just keep what I just said in your mind whenever you feel down. That will get you through the dark days and you are going to have a lot of them." Mr. Marker and Vogan both got up. "The guard has a couple of things he will be giving you. My business card, the extradition papers and what you are going to be charged with when you get to El Paso, which is going to be basically the same charges you have been charged with here."

Dominic got a little nervous when he heard that he was going to be arraigned again. He stood up and thanked both attorneys as he made his way to the door. Less than a minute after the attorneys left, the guard opened up the door and escorted Dominic back to his cell. He went to his bunk and sat down thinking about the news he was just given.

Meanwhile back in El Paso, Aaron thought he had said something or done something wrong to Chris the day before because he didn't see him at his table. He kept an eye out for him, but he never saw him. Since he didn't know the others at the table where Chris sits, he couldn't go up and ask where he was.

Even when he and the others went out to the stadium, he kept looking for Chris. Not able to help himself, he wondered if Chris was the real deal, or was the guy playing a joke on him. When the bell rang, his imagination started to get away from him. He started to believe that it was an evil joke and he fell for it.

All through his morning classes, Aaron couldn't stop thinking about Chris. The more he thought about him, the more his mind played tricks on him. His mind was telling him that Chris was playing him for a fool, but his heart was telling him the opposite. By the time lunch rolled around, he was so mixed up, he didn't know if he was coming or going when it came down to Chris.

As he made his way to his locker, several students bumped into him, almost causing him fall since he was walking with crutches. When he finally reached his locker, he breathed in a sigh of relief as he opened his combo lock. Once he got the lock open, he pulled the latch to the locker. When the door opened, a note falling out.

Aaron quickly picked up and put it in his pocket as he threw his books in. Slamming the locker door shut, placing and closing his lock, he made his way to the nearest restroom so he could read the note. When he got in, he wobbled over to the first open stall, closed the door and sat down on the toilet.

Taking a couple of deep breaths, Aaron pulled out the note from his pocket slowly unfolded. He was certain that the note was from Chris, but prepared himself just in case it wasn't. When he completely got the note unfolded, he looked down at it and didn't recognize the handwriting. With a big smile on his face, he started reading it.



I am so sorry that we didn't see each other this morning. All I was able to think about all night was seeing you again. I know it may sound strange since we have barely met, but it is the truth. Like I told you yesterday, I couldn't stop looking at you from the moment I first set eyes on you.


Aaron got goose bumps as he started to read the letter. He started to think of Chris in a way that he has never thought of another guy before which started to scare him. He knew what the feelings were, but at the same time he knew he wasn't supposed to be getting these feelings. But no matter what he tried to do to get his mind off of Chris, it didn't work. All he could think about is the guy he talked to for a few minutes earlier that day.

If it is all possible, I would like to meet up with you at lunch today. So if you can get away from you friends, look for me at my table and blink twice. That way I can make an excuse to get away from my friends and meet you in the hallway leading to the stadium.




Aaron read the letter a couple more times before folding it back up and putting it back in his pocket. As he made his way to the cafeteria, he started to think of an excuse to get away from the others that would be believable. By the time he got his tray, he was no closer to an excuse than he was when he first started.

Frustrated with himself, he made his way to the table and joined the others. This time when he looked over at Chris' table, he saw Chris looking back at him. They both smiled at each other, but he was unable to give the signal that he was going to be able to get away. As time ticked away, he saw Chris getting worried.

While Aaron was trying to figure out a way to get away from his group to meet up with Chris, Bill Carnes, the former police chief's son, had just finished eating. He was already hitting his head against the wall on his transfer to the halfway house. When he signed on the dotted line, he thought the transfer was going to happen the same day, but yet here he is, still in his eight by eight cell, with nothing to pass the time.

Tired at looking at the walls of his cell, he lay down and closed his eyes. Just as he was starting to doze off, he heard his cell door open. Picking over his shoulder, he saw several sheriffs' deputies walking in. Afraid what they were there to do, Bill jumped out of his bed faster than he has ever done in his life.

"Mr. Cranes, there is no need for you to get all worked up. We aren't here to hurt you like other officers that were under your father's command." Bill wanted to believe them, but after all he has seen in his young life, he couldn't quite get there. "Gather your stuff and don't leave anything behind that you want to keep because you aren't coming back."

That put a smile on Bill's face, but he couldn't get himself to turn his back to the deputies and they saw his refusal. "Look, either you collect your things that you want to take with you to the halfway house or we will toss it. We don't care where the stuff goes, as long as we stay on schedule getting you out and over to the halfway house."

The tone in the sheriff's voice gave Bill the needed push to believe them that they were not going to harm him. He grabbed his laundry bag, and started to toss in the few things he wanted to take with him. It wasn't much since he didn't have much to start with. Once he was done, he waited to see what the deputies wanted him to do next.

The sheriffs made Bill drop his bag and face the wall. Once they did their normal search and handcuffed him, they walked him out of the cell to the room he came in to when he was first brought to the detention facility. He stripped out of the clothes that were issued to him and put on the clothes he came in with.

Once he finished dressing, the officers re-handcuffed him and escorted him out to the sheriff's car. All the way back into town, Bill looked out the window and saw the city a lot different than he had when he was taken out to the facility. Before he thought the city was his because of who his father was, but now, he is grateful to get another chance to live there as an equal to everyone else.

When they passed downtown, he started to wonder where he was going because he thought the halfway house was in the Westside of town. By the looks of it, they were taking him home. However, when they took the exit a couple exits before his, his worries started to go away. Then when they pulled into the parking lot of a hotel, he knew he was not going home, but where he was sentenced; the halfway house.

The sheriffs parked in front and got out to check if they were at the right place before pulling Bill out. Still not sure if they were where they were supposed to be, they kept Bill handcuffed and very close to them as they walked in. They kept their hands on their guns and were ready for any kind of trouble that might come their way.

Then when they walked in and were greeted by Mr. Jackson, they settled down. "Gentlemen, is this the young Bill Carnes that we have been waiting on all morning?" The sheriffs nodded their heads. "My name is Tustin Jackson, the head of security here. I will be taking this young man off of your hands."

The sheriffs had no problem with that. They handed Mr. Jackson Bill's transfer paperwork among many other pieces of paperwork he needed before un-handcuffing him. Once Bill's hands were free, he started to rub them where the handcuffs bit into his skin.

"Now Mr. Carnes follow me so I can get you set up." Mr. Jackson waved Bill over to him as he thanked the deputies and shook their hands. "You might think that you got away with what you did, but let me say it here and now that you didn't. Things are going to be better here than where you were at, but it won't be like it was before you got in trouble. Those days are gone for the next couple of years at least."

Bill looked at Mr. Jackson a little confused on what he just said. "I won't become my father that I assure you. I was given a second chance, with no help from my father. The judge took one look at me and saw something that others can't. It took me several sleepless nights to figure out what he saw in me, and I plan to not let him down."

"Good to hear that, because as I said things here aren't going to be like it was at home. First, you will have a time to come in every night, which is at six as you know. Second, you will get a monitor on your ankle today, which can't come off without Judge Evans saying so. If you try to take it off or mess with it in anyway, you will be revoked and sent back to the facility you just came from." Bill gave Jackson an ugly look.

"Third, you will stay on the floor you are assigned to. The key card I issue you will only get you on that floor and here the lobby. If you are found on another floor that you aren't supposed to be on, you will be revoked.

Fourth, you won't bring your friends here to the hotel. You will have visitation days, and on those days they can come, but at no other time you will be allowed to have them visit." Mr. Jackson looked down at Bill's file and saw that he was the one that hurt Aaron. "I see you are the one that hurt Aaron. Is that correct?" Bill nodded his head.

"Aaron lives here now and I'd better not see you around him. I am going to make sure all the guards keep an extra eye on Aaron. If you go near Aaron for whatever reason, you will be revoked. I won't have that young man living in hell when the sees you. That poor kid had gone through a lot already, and shouldn't have to go through the worry that one day you might finish what you started."

"Mr. Jackson I have no plans on hurting Aaron or anyone for that matter. What I did to him was wrong and I wish I could go back and tell my dumb ass to not do that stupid thing. But I can't, so I need to learn from it and not do something that stupid again in the future." Bill thought back to that day and started to kick himself in the butt for it.

Jackson looked Bill in the eyes as he spoke about what he had done and saw he really meant what he said. The kid really wishes that he could go back and stop himself from doing something like he did. However, Jackson knows that is irrelevant, he did it, and now he has to pay for what he has done.

"Okay let me go over the remaining rules and then show you your room." Bill nodded his head. "You won't be attending the same high school you were at. Every high school student here is attending El Paso High School, and that is where you will go. If you get in trouble there, you can get revoked or end up going to the Job Corps. Don't do anything stupid to test where you might end up going, okay?" Bill nodded his head.

"You will use the back entrance of the building and the back elevators. The key card I am issuing you won't open the front doors or any other elevator in the building. If you are caught coming through the front doors or attempting to use the other elevators, you will be written up. Sally or your probation officer will go into more detail about writes ups and how that affects you.

All meals are eaten in the restaurant over there." Bill looked where Jackson was pointing at. "However, you won't eat with the others from the other floors of this hotel. You will only eat in the section with those from the floor you are assigned. Once again if you are caught in an area of the restaurant or anywhere in the hotel for that matter that you don't belong, you will be written up."

Jackson scratched his head as he handed Bill his key card. He tried to think if he had forgotten anything, but nothing more came to his mind. "That pretty much sums it up. If I forgotten something, Sally or your probation officer will go over it with you. Do you have any questions for me as far as what I have gone over?"

"Um, no sir not really! I won't make any trouble while I am here, I promise. Whatever you ask of me, I will get it done." Bill stuttered as he followed Jackson to the elevator.

They got on, and didn't get back off until they reached the floor where he was going to be living the next couple of years. Neither of them spoke, they just walked down the long hallway and when they got to the room, Bill stood back as he watched Jackson slide the key card that was his. The light went from red to green and then the door opened.

"Well young Carnes, I hope you are different than you father, I really do. If things go the way they should, he won't be breathing a breath of fresh air for at least twenty five years." Jackson handed Bill his key card. "Learn from his mistakes and don't follow in his footsteps." Jackson extended his hand for Bill to shake.

"Please stay here because Sally and your probation officer will be up to see you shortly. They need to put on the monitor." Jackson let go of Bill's hand and started to walk away. "I know I don't need to tell you this, but I am going to say it anyway. If you think this is your chance to run, don't try. This place might look like it isn't guarded, but it is."

Bill promised to stay put as he watched Jackson get on the elevator. When the doors closed, he walked into the room and looked around. He couldn't believe how nice the room was. He was expecting the place to be a dorm with at least twenty kids, but he sees how wrong he was. It isn't dorm, but a room with two beds. If you would divide the room in half, his half is almost double the size of the cell he was in.

With a smile on his face, he walked over to the first bed and tested it out. Then he walked over to the second bed and tested it out. After going back and forth a couple of times, he decided on the bed next to the window. Once he did that, he looked around.

When he got to the bathroom, he almost jumped up and down. He started to think that he was going to be using a cold metal toilet and shower for years, but here he is looking at not only a regular bathroom, but a pretty big one. Just as he was about to walk in, he heard a knock on the door and then saw it open.

He walked back into the room and saw a middle aged woman and a middle aged man walk in. There was no need for introductions, he knew who they were. The man was carrying a small briefcase, and there was no doubt in Bill's mind that his monitor was in it. Not waiting to be asked to go sit down, he went ahead and did it as they did their introductions. Just as Bill thought, it was Sally and his probation officer.

While Bill was adjusting to his new surroundings, Aaron was frustrated with himself that he couldn't think of a good excuse to get away from the others. The lunch bell rang, signaling that it was time to start their way back into the building. Every few steps, Aaron would look at Chris to steal a glimpse of him. Just as Chris started to disappear under the stairs, he winked at Aaron, making him feel all funny inside.

Joey spotted Aaron starring at someone, but who he didn't put together. Not wanting to embarrass him, he said nothing. Grabbing Caleb's hand, they walked hand on hand to the locker, and after getting their books, they walked to their fourth period class holding hands. No one said a word, even those that really didn't like seeing that.

Unlike other Fridays, this one flew by for Joey and the group. None of them could put their finger on why. They just wrote it off that they were not looking over the shoulders all the time. Here at their new school, they didn't feel threatened at all. The feeling was what Joey remembered from the last time he was attended El Paso High.

Before dropping off the guys that didn't live at the hotel at their houses, Joey confirmed with them to come down later in the afternoon on Saturday to see the new vehicles. He was surprised when Thomas asked if he could join them the next day car shopping. Joey saw no reason why not and told him to arrive at the hotel no later than nine.

Seeing that put a smile on his face, Joey had a smile on his all the way back to the hotel. When they got there Joey and Caleb walked straight to the kitchen to grab a snack before heading up to their penthouse, but they got a surprise when they walked into the kitchen.

They had no idea that Chase and Marco were in there, not just talking. They were kissing, and it wasn't a simple kiss. It was a passionate kiss between them. Joey turned around and quickly pulled Caleb back out with him. He hoped that neither Chase nor Marco saw them because he has heard how much Chase is fighting the feelings he has been getting lately.

Just as Joey hoped, neither Chase nor Marco saw them. They held the kiss for a couple more minutes after they left. When they finally broke it, they both felt as if they were missing something. They wanted to pull each other back into a kiss and not break it, but knew that they couldn't. Neither of them wanted to be caught.

Although Joey and Caleb's stomachs were growling, they ignored the growls and headed to the elevator. Just as they swiped their key card, Harold walked up. They greeted each other and stood there in silence. When the doors opened to the elevator, Joey remembered the conversation he had with his sister.

"Um, Dad, I was wondering if I could speak with you and mom for a few minutes before dinner." Joey asked in a softer voice that Harold and Caleb were barely able to hear. "It is kind of important and it does involve both you and mom." Joey looked at Harold with trembling legs. He felt like he was going to collapse.

"Does it have anything to do with what we dealt with yesterday?" Harold saw Joey shaking his head. "Fine, I don't see why not. Why don't you come on over after you toss your backpack in your penthouse. I will make sure Helen and I are ready for you."

Joey nodded his head and turned to face the elevator door. It felt like eternity to him before the elevator stopped, but when it did. He walked out promising Harold that he and Caleb will be over at their penthouse in a couple minutes. Harold told Joey not to rush, they had plenty of time before dinner was ready.

As he and Caleb dropped off their backpacks, Joey explained to his partner why he needed to talk to their parents. "Do you think that they will get mad if I ask them to let me adopt my sister? After all dad pulled a lot of strings to move the paperwork and get the adoption done before we moved down here."

"Don't worry Joey. They won't get mad at all." Caleb answered in a reinsuring voice as they walked down the hall towards their parents' penthouse. "One thing you may not have learned yet about my parents is that they don't get mad easily. Take it from me! I put them through a lot that if it was any other parents, I would be in reform school." Caleb started to chuckle when they reached their parents' front door.

Joey couldn't remember the last time he was as nervous as he was at that very moment. As he walked towards Harold and Helen, his throat dried up, and his palms started to sweat. By the time he greeted Helen, he could barely get the words out with his throat as dry as it was. Then when they sat down and all the eyes were on him, he got even more nervous than he was before. He didn't think that was even possible.

"Mom, dad, I have something to ask you that might get you mad. So before you answer me, please let me finish. Okay?" At the same time Helen and Harold agreed. "I have been talking with my sister the last couple of nights and I agree with her with what she wants to do. I was wondering if I can adopt my sister, and you guys keep Allen."

The look Joey was getting from Helen and Harold he couldn't make out. He started to stumble around on why he wanted to adopt his sister, but after a few minutes, he got on the right track. When he finally finished explaining his reasons, he sat there looking at Helen and Harold, trying to read them, but got nothing.

"Joey, I don't..."




{Welcome back, one and all, to another filled chapter of "Regrets and Heartaches". I am liking this story more and more as I write it. It is finally starting to grow into its own, which took awhile, but it is getting there. It's now is getting its own plots and by the looks of it, hopefully, it won't need the help of the other stories to keep going.

Let's get to the summation of the chapter. It picked right up where I left off, as usual. The only difference here is that I took you through the last event again, but through the eyes of the guy that patted Aaron his shoulder at the end of the last chapter. How many of you were surprised to read that it was Chris?

I really hope that things work out for these two. Both of them have been through their own little hells. The only concern I have about them is who will be the strong one in the relationship. Many of you may disagree with me here, but I believe there needs to be a strong one in a relationship. Jacob was the strong one when he was with Joey, but now with Dewayne, it is about equal. Joey and Caleb are equal almost. Cesar is the perfect match for Josh. And let's not forget Alex and Matt. Alex is the strong one, but Matt keeps Alex grounded. Without that, Alex might not be where he is today.

Anyway, let's get back to this story. In the last couple of chapters of "Shadow of My Father", we have seen Chris getting stronger. I wonder if he is going to be the strong one in the relationship, if it becomes one. I guess we all will just have to wait and see first if it does become more than friends, and if so, who will be the strong person. Your suggestions are welcome of course, let me hear them.

A lot was discussed about how things were going to work with the halfway wing in the hotel. I am glad they had that meeting. However, I was happy to see Joey growing into his own. We all can see that Joey is growing up and taking charge. He is going to be a great leader for the shelter and anything else he decides to do. Trust me, I have a lot planned for him if you guys tick around for the future installments of this saga.

Bill, the former chief of police's son is finally at the hotel. I wonder if he is true to his word, or will he go back to his old ways of thinking. This is another plot we will just have to wait and see. I truly hope he is true to his word. It looks like Aaron is moving on, but I believe the smallest thing could set him back.

Marco and Chase were steaming up the kitchen. We already know by reading the last couple of installments of "Jacob Finding His Way" that Chase and Marco decided to come out to the others. However, the accident happened and everything else that followed that accident. I wonder if they are going to still come out, or back step on that decision. This is another plot we will have to just wait and see. The only bad thing about this one, it could unfold either in this chapter or a "Jacob" chapter. So if I were you, I would keep reading both sagas so where you don't miss a thing.

Finally the ending of the chapter! We all know Helen and Harold, but at the same time we don't know them. What I mean is that we have never seen them being put in the position they were getting placed in at the end of this chapter. I really hope they are no different, but who knows. I don't even know. All I can say is that you guys know me and I am evil. I can go so many different directions with this plot.

There is so much going on in this saga. I can keep writing, but I won't. You guys are going to need to tune in to the next chapter to see what is going on. More plots are going to open and old ones will be closed. This story, like my others, will keep you on your toes. Don't miss what is coming up in the chapters to come.

I don't want to say too much more and spoil the future chapters to come, so I won't. I warn you though! Don't skip a chapter, or you will be lost. There is a so much to answer in the chapters to come. Keep reading the future chapters, and enjoy! Please email me and let me know how I am doing at jacob@jacobmillertex.com, Thanks!}



Dominic is sure shook up over being remanded to the Texas justice system. I think if I were in his shoes, I'd be pretty shook too. As the attorneys pointed out to him, he's stepped on the wrong peoples' toes. There are powerful people that will be bringing all their influence to bear for him to be buried in prison and the key thrown away. It will be very interesting to see how the system deals with him. It's also good to see that Judge Evans isn't going to have his hand in the proceedings. Wise!

I get the feeling that Bill has been scared straight. I think he's figured out that he'd better do the right things in his life lest he end up locked up for a good part of his life. Perhaps the son has learned from the father's mistakes in this case.

I'm anxious to see which side of the fence Chase will ultimately land on. It seems his hormones are moving him toward Marco very solidly. Now, how did that kiss really affect him? I hope that if he starts keeping serious company with Marco that Chase won't be ambivalent as he has been in the past. I hope that he will freely move as his spirit urges him without regard to "what people think". When Chase finally adopts the "screw what others think" attitude, his life will start to smooth out. He'll like how he feels!

Chris and Aaron are going to be an interesting case if things get moving. It seems Aaron has those feelings same as Chris. The attraction thing is in gear. Are they compatible past the initial attraction? Those two bruised souls could potentially join forces and become so much more than the individuals are as singles.

When a good relationship forms and blossoms the result is greater than the sum of its parts.

Until Next Time,

"Daddy" Rick