Written by: J.P.G.

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

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

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

Story Written by: J.P.G.

Love Scenes Written By: Trevor

Edited By: Ed

Edited By: Trevor

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

Chapter 17


Just as Chris finished eating breakfast and was cleaning up the mess he had made, the doorbell rang. He wasn't going to answer it at first, since he just crawled out of bed and went straight to the kitchen to eat breakfast. He did splash water on his face, but that was more to wake him up than anything else was. As far as everything else like combing his hair and changing out of his running shorts, as he normally does before sitting down for breakfast, he didn't do.

By the third ring of the doorbell, Chris wanting to know who was at the door got the best of him. He put down the dish he was washing and walked over to the door. Through the peek hole, he saw Angel standing there, cuter than ever. He wanted to answer to just be around Angel and take in not only his great looks, but his scent as well. However, he was nowhere near being presentable.

His emotions were tugging him into two different directions. His heart wanted him to damn it all and just let Angel in. His pride was telling him to not let him in since he was not presentable. He might scare the guy off even more than he has already. Quickly he weighed his emotions and came to a decision just as Angel gave up and was leaving.

"Hold on I'm coming, give me a minute." Chris yelled through the door. He watched as Angel stopped and turned around. When he saw that he was not going anywhere, he quickly ran up stairs. Along the way, he stripped off his shorts and t-shirt. By the time he reached his room, he was only wearing his underwear.

As fast as he could, Chris pulled on a pair of jeans and a clean T-shirt. Once he got his socks on, he put on his shoes as he headed across the hall to the bathroom. Not waiting for the water to warm up, he splashed some through his hair and on his face. He then pushed a comb through his hair as he grabbed his toothbrush. It took him less than five minutes to do everything he needed to do in the bathroom to be presentable.

Running back down the stairs, Chris stopped at the mirror in the hallway where he made sure his hair and everything else was okay. Still not liking how he looked, he turned and opened the door. Angel flashed his beautiful smile at Chris, which made him feel what he just did was worth it. Out of breath, Chris showed Angel to the living room.

"What's going on Angel? I didn't know you were coming down this morning. If I did, I would have been waiting for you." Angel sat down and flashed the smile at Chris that just tears away his shield. "Man do I love that smile of yours, I really do. I don't know if I've told you that before, but if I have, let me know, I love your smile."

Angel chuckled. "Thank you and yes you have told me that a couple of times when we first started writing each other during class. As I told you then I'll tell you now. I love hearing those kinds of words coming out of your mouth. I can't get enough of it. So you can tell me that or anything you like whenever you want without me getting mad."

Chris turned all shades of red. He tried to hide it, but was unsuccessful. "Thank you Angel and if I ever say anything that makes you feel uncomfortable, just say the word and I'll stop." Chris flashed his smile, but he felt it wasn't as gorgeous as Angels. "Um, I just finished eating breakfast and have nothing planned for today, what about you."

Just then, they heard something fall in the kitchen. Chris quickly ran into the kitchen and couldn't believe the mess. He'd forgotten to turn off the water in the sink, and in return it overflowed and was all over the kitchen floor.

Knowing that the coach and his wife are due to be home from church at any time, he ran to the sink, turned the water off before running to the closet where they kept their cleaning supplies. As he was grabbing the mop, Angel walked in and started to laugh at what he saw. Chris looked over at him and shot him a dirty look. Once he realized what he was doing, he quickly looked down.

"Don't worry dude, I'll help you clean this mess up. Between the two of us, we will have this kitchen spotless by the time your parents get home." Angel walked over and took the mop from Chris. "You take care of the dishes in the sink, I hate doing those, and I'll start getting rid of the water on the floor."

Not thinking twice about the offer, Chris made his way through the water to the sink. He started to wash what was left of the dishes while Angel mopped the floor. As soon as Chris finished the dishes, he walked over to the laundry room and pulled out all the dirty towels. He tossed them on the floor and started helping Angel. Within fifteen minutes, they had cleaned up the kitchen and put everything back.

When they were done, it didn't look like anything had happened. In fact, it looked a lot cleaner than it did before Chris started cooking his breakfast. Satisfied that the coach and his foster mother were going to be happy with the kitchen, Chris took Angel upstairs to his room. The second Chris closed the door, Angel got down to why he was there.

"I had the greatest time last time. In fact, whenever I'm with you, I have the greatest time of my life. Not so much because we are with Josh and the others. No it's because you make me feel things I've never felt before. I won't lie to you. I've no idea what to do with these feelings. But I hope you'll be there for me."

Chris wasn't stunned on what he just heard. At the least, Angel has been throwing nothing but mixed signals and now here he is doing it again. Today he is playing hot, but yesterday and a couple of days before that he was playing cold. The biggest problem Chris has is when Angel turns on the charm, he falls for it each and every single time. He has a way with words that just make you forget the anger you have about the way he deals with his emotions.

"I'm glad that you're enjoying yourself with me, because I'm enjoying myself with you as well. In fact, I can't wait to see you again after we leave each other. That I haven't felt for any guy since I was with Josh. I thought I lost that the minute I lost Josh when we broke up last year."

"Um, I don't want to destroy this moment, but I need to ask this question because it's been bothering me for days now." Chris got the sinking feeling that he gets when Angel changes his tone as he just did. "I know I keep asking you this question and you keep saying no, but I see things between you and Patrick. Also sometimes between you and Josh, but more with you and Patrick!

If you want to be with Patrick, go for it. We can stay friends." Chris was getting madder by the second and Angel could see it in his face. "Um, I mean all I want for you is for you to be happy. If that happiness means you and Patrick being together I say go for it. Don't go for what you want because of me."

Chris had about enough of the games Angel was playing. "I'm getting tired of you saying what you're saying. I don't know what you want me to say or do to prove to you that I don't like Patrick in the way you think I do. Yes, he's a good friend, but that's all he is, a good friend. As far as Josh, we're just friends as well. Plus, there is history there, but there is no way we'll ever get back together. Not just because he is with Cesar, but also because we both know it would never work."

"Please don't get mad, I'm just trying to make sure you have really thought about everything. I don't want us to get into anything and then later on you come to me and break up with me because you realized what I was saying all along was true. If you have feelings for Patrick, then you should try and see where they take you."

"Damn it Angel, what the hell do you want me to do here." Chris jumped up from the bed, angrier than he had ever been. "I don't love Patrick and just like Josh, he has a boyfriend that he is deeply in love with. I love you and if you can't see that, we won't ever make it. If you keep seeing things that aren't there, we will never make it. You need to decide once and for all if this is what you want, a relationship with me."

Angel didn't know how to reply to Chris. All he knew is that he liked Chris probably more than Chris likes him, but he is afraid to put his heart out there. He got up from the bed, apologized to Chris for making him mad and headed out the door as fast as he could, Chris tried to chase after him, but Angel was out the front door and down the street before Chris reached the front porch.

Meanwhile, Eric and Bernice had already eaten breakfast and were on the job hunt. They were more determined than they were the night before when they decided to get jobs for spending money. When they explained their plans to their parents during breakfast, to say their parents were unhappy would be an understatement. At first, Eric's parents and Father Gomez didn't want their kids to work at such a young age, but when they explained why they wanted to work, they reluctantly agreed.

The first couple of places they stopped in at were accepting applications, but they weren't hiring. Then their luck changed and the next three places not only were accepting applications, but they were hiring as well. One of the places even gave them an interview on the spot, but when the manager saw their age, he ended the interview.

By mid afternoon, both Bernice and Eric were worn out. They had gone up and down Mesa Street and stopped in every fast food joint along the way. When they reached the mall, all they did was go into one store and out another placing applications. They never thought getting a job would be so difficult, but boy now they do.

Before leaving the mall, they sat down in the food court and had something to eat. They were too tired to talk since they've been walking all over the place. Somehow, they mustered enough strength to eat, but that was all. As soon as they were done, they dragged themselves to their feet and made their way to the bus stop.

As they sat there looking out the window of the bus going back down Mesa Street, they both knew that they were tired not because of the walking they just done, but because they were out late the night before at Josh's party. On top of that, they were frustrated. Frustrated on seeing how hard it really is to get a job.

Eric got a glimpse of a restaurant that they didn't stop in on their way to the mall. It wasn't that they skipped it. It was because they were closed. As he stood up, he rang the bell for the bus to stop and pulled Bernice to her feet. They made their way to the front of the bus and got a transfer from the driver as they got off.

The bus drove off, leaving Eric and Bernice in a cloud of black smoke. Coughing, they straightened themselves up and headed in. There was an employee at the door welcoming them to Taco Tote. With a smile, Eric thanked the greeter and asked if they were hiring. When she said yes, he asked for two applications. When the greeter returned with the applications, they sat down on the benches in the waiting area and started filling them out.

Bernice beat Eric, but she waited for him to finish before turning hers in. As they handed the applications to the greeter, they turned to walk out, but were stopped. The greeter explained that the manager wants to interview them, but is tied up in a call right now and asked them to wait. They didn't need to be asked twice.

They only waited five minutes before the manager walked up with their applications. "Thank you guys for waiting for me." The manager extended his hand. "My name's Gilbert Jackson, I'm the store manager. I'm limited for time today, but I have several positions I need to fill as of yesterday. So if you two don't mind since you came in together, I'd like to interview you guys at the same time."

Neither Eric nor Bernice objected. They followed Mr. Jackson to a table in the back and sat across him. As he looked over both applications, Eric and Bernice looked on holding their breath. When they saw him glance several times at the top of the applications, they knew what he was looking at, their birthdays.

"Okay I can see that neither of you have any experience at all in the work force. Did I read that correctly?" At the same time, Eric and Bernice nodded their heads. "Also both of you are sixteen years old." Again, they nodded their heads. "I've no problem with either of those two things I mentioned since the positions I am hiring for is out here. If I needed a cook or someone to work in the kitchen, that would be a different story.

Now before I go any further I need to tell you guys how things work here. Maybe after I'm done, you guys will high tail it out and I'll never see either of you again." At the same time, Eric and Bernice laughed. "Now the positions that are open are waiter and waitress. Basically, what they do is come out here; make sure the customers are having a great time. Also, clean up any mess that might be left by the same customers.

Unlike Denny's and Village Inn, the waiters and waitress don't take orders. The customer walks in, goes straight up to the counter, and places their order there. If hired, you guys will also learn how to run the front counter because that is where you'll be spending most of your shift."

Mr. Jackson went on explaining everything that the position he is hiring for does. None of what he is saying is scaring off Eric and Bernice. In fact, they love what they are hearing. If they understand what is being said, their shift would go by in a flash, which is what they want.

"Now I have a few questions for you two. I am going to throw them out there and both of you answer them, but don't talk over each other." The two agreed ladies should go first. "The first question is why are you looking for work? The reason I'm asking this is because if you are just going to hold the job for a few weeks, I need to know. It takes a lot of time and effort to train someone and I don't want to waste any of that if neither of you are going to stick around for a while."

"To be completely honest with you sir, we're still in high school, which I'm pretty sure you came to that conclusion seeing our ages. We not only want the jobs, but we need them. Not just for a short period of time, but we'll keep them as long as you need us, hopefully that'll be for a while."

Eric looked at Bernice and then over to Mr. Jackson. "I pretty much ditto everything Bernice said. The only thing I would like to add to what she said is that if you hire us, we need Spring Break week off." Mr. Jackson looked at him as if he was out of his mind for asking that. "The reason I'm asking that is because our friend, Josh, is going to go on tour that week and asked us to join him.

"You mean Joshua Lopez, the young man that performed at the UTEP Center on Friday with George Straight and Johnny Cash." Eric and Bernice at once said yes. "I was there and let me tell you that concert was great. Not just because of the two veterans that sang, but Josh put on a show I never expected to see from a country singer.

Knowing that, I've no problem giving you two that week off, if you get the job. Now let me ask if either of you two are afraid of speaking? You know when you're in front of customers, will you get tongue tied?" At the same time, Eric and Bernice said no. "Good, I'm glad to hear that. I hired a young lady a couple of days ago and let me tell you she couldn't speak in front of customers if her life depended on it."

The restaurant manager went through his list of questions he normally asks during an interview. Eric and Bernice answered the majority of the questions to his liking, there were a few he didn't like the answers to, but he was able to let it go. The questions he got the answer he liked were enough to overshadow the bad ones.

"Well I really have no more questions for you guys. The jobs are yours if you can start work tomorrow." With big smiles on their faces, they nodded their heads. "Good I'll put you on schedule to come in at five and work till nine. I can't work you any longer than that because of your ages, but it works out perfectly for me."

Mr. Jackson got up and walked Eric and Bernice to his office where he got them their uniforms and nametags. Once they were set to come into work, Eric and Bernice thanked Mr. Jackson several times for giving them a chance as they walked back out to the lobby. Due to his filled day, he welcomed the two onboard and bid them goodbye.

Since they were told that they got the jobs, they didn't stop smiling. They held the goofy smiles all the way home. Holding on to their uniforms as tight as they could, they imagined how it was going to be like earning an actual paycheck. Then those thoughts were replaced with thoughts on how they are going to tell their parents that they actually got hired. The only thing that they are sure of is that their free time is gone.

Back at the Lopez's house, everyone had been awake since eleven. None of them left the house since Daniel Sr. was heading back to Austin later in the day. They wanted to spend the day together with their father since none of them really knew when he is going to make it back into town again.

All the boys started to feel bad when it got closer and closer to the time for their father to leave. It wasn't the same sadness they have felt in the past when their father left and that is why they feel bad. They're not as torn up about it as they have been and the only thing they could think of why that is happening is because they're getting used to it.

It's their reality now as a family. Their father is going to be gone for a long period of time, but that doesn't mean that he can't be reached. They have learnt in the last year that whenever they have needed him, all they have had to do is call and he was there. For that reason and that reason alone is why they're handling him leaving this time in high spirits.

As three rolled around the boys made their way back downstairs to see their father off. No one, including Barbara, is going with him to the airport, by his request. He explained that he was going to be on the phone the entire way talking with his staff, so it would be a boring drive. Everyone understood and didn't press any further to go.

Daniel Sr. and Barbara made their way down shortly after the boys did. They all gathered at the front door and said their goodbyes. No one had tears in their eyes, but they did start to feel a little empty inside as they watched the limousine pull out. When they couldn't see the limousine anymore, they walked back into the house and went back to what they were doing before they came down to say goodbye to their father.

The rest of the day, the boys lazed around. They wanted to go swimming before dinner, but Josh didn't want to. Ever since he quit the swim team, he hasn't gone near the pool, which worried everyone. He had two loves in his life, his music and swimming and now one of his loves is gone. The one that everyone thought he would at least be doing his entire high school career.

After trying different ways to get Josh into the pool, Cesar and his brothers gave up joining him in front of the television. They watched movies until dinner and after dinner until it was time for them to start to get ready for school. The final movie they were watching had twenty minutes left when it was time for them to go turn in for the night. Seeing that, Barbara let them finish the movie.

Not realizing they were still beat from their very busy weekend, the minute Josh and Cesar crawled into bed, they were out. Just like the last couple of nights, they weren't able to keep themselves awake to snuggle with each other. They promised each other no matter what they would stay awake, but sleep beat them once again.

When the alarm sounded the next morning, Josh and Cesar crawled out of bed more refreshed than they have in a long time. As they got dressed for school, they teased each other, and not in the way, any sixteen-year-old boy wants to be teased. It was very hard for both of them to put their jeans on since their joysticks wouldn't go down.

The moment they got to school, their fellow classmates walked up to Josh and congratulated him on not only his concert, but also his gold record. Those that did not stick around to get his autograph that night, actually asked for it when they saw him. He felt weird signing the concert tickets or t-shirts they bought at the concert being that those that were asking for the autographs go to school with him.


As he was making his way down the hall signing T-shirts, his CD and notebooks, a kid handed Josh a magazine. At first, Josh didn't think twice of what was handed to him, but as he was signing the front page, he looked up and saw the bloody pictures of Cesar in the SUV. He quickly looked up and saw a student with thick glasses looking at him with a big grin across his face.


"What the hell is this?" Josh yelled at the kid that handed him the tabloid, but didn't get an answer. All he got was a bigger grin. "You are out of your mind if you think I'm going to sign this thing." Josh was about to toss the tabloid back at the kid that handed it to him, but Cesar grabbed it in midair.


Josh tried to take the tabloid from Cesar, but Cesar moved his body to a point that Josh had no chance on getting his hands on the tabloid, that didn't stop him from trying to get it. He kept reaching over, but Cesar slapped Josh's hands away. He turned to the page where the story was, and couldn't believe the pictures that were in there. He looked up at the others in the hallway, and they were all looking at him.


He turned all shades of red as he turned to Josh and handed him the tabloid. Josh tried to talk to Cesar about it, but Cesar didn't want to hear it. Just then, Daniel Jr., Carlos and Brandon walked up with their friends. They saw the group of students around Josh and Cesar, and their minds went to the worse and they were right.


As soon as they were told what was going on, they flipped out. It took all of Daniel Jr.'s friends to hold him back from beating the kid with glasses that handed the tabloid to Josh. Josh wanted to do the same thing, but he didn't want to make this bigger than what it was already. The Lopez boy's security pulled them out of the area and sent them on their way. Josh kept trying to talk to Cesar about what just happened, but Cesar kept saying he was okay and there was no reason for him to worry or talk about this.


It took Josh and Cesar a while to get to the cafeteria, but once they sat down with the others at the table, everyone left them alone. Josh was surprised that no one was talking and wondered why. He looked around and saw different expressions in each of his friend's faces, some good and some bad.


As he was looking at his friends, Russ leaned over and whispered to Josh. "Put what happened just now out of your mind. We will talk about it when we get to the house later this evening, okay?" Josh shook his head and returned to what he was doing; trying to figure out what was going on with his friends. He started over looking into each of their faces to see if he could read them.


It was obvious that Eric and Bernice had some good news, but didn't want to share it. Patrick and Immanuel looked like they had fun last night with each other because they were glowing. But, when he looked over at Chris and Angel, he knew things turned worse with those two. Neither of them were smiling and barely kept eye contact

Josh felt for Chris, but at the same time he'd warned Chris that Angel was no good. From the moment Chris told him what he had done. Josh knew Angel was no good. Maybe as a friend, but not what Chris was looking for and wanted. No matter what he or anyone has said to Chris, he wasn't willing to listen, which opened him up to a world of hurt.

Since no one wanted to talk about the news they had, the table was awfully quiet. Josh tried to lighten up the mood by throwing out one of his famous riddles, but no one really got into it. After trying several times to get everyone upbeat, Josh gave up. Feeling like crap spread from Chris and Angel to the rest of the table.

By the time they walked out to the stadium, no one was talking at all and Josh had enough of it. He pulled Chris and Angel to the side. They knew by the look on Josh's face he wasn't happy. So they tried to head him off, but when they opened their mouths to speak, Josh cut them off.

"Look you guys need to get a handle on what ever this is. I told both of you what I think about this whole thing, but you both chose to ignore it. Now that it has spread to the rest of us, I'm going to step in and make it clear here and now that you two need to decide whether or not you're going to be an item, friends or nothing at all."

"Josh we talked about that all day yesterday and we need more time."

"Chris, I don't care if you need all the time in the world, take it. Just make sure whatever is going on between you two doesn't pour over to everyone else. I know you guys can see what you're doing. Your bad moods spread and that's something we can't have. So again do whatever you need to do, but fix this." Josh looked into both of their eyes and refused to blink until he got their answers.

Once they promised Josh that they were going to solve their problems and stop being the ones making everyone feel bad for having a great weekend, they rejoined the others. Almost immediately, everyone came alive. They started talking about what they did on Sunday and how much fun they had at Josh's party along with the concert the night before.

From the moment the governor landed, he was stuck in meetings. Most of them were ones that he had cancelled when he had to fly back home to El Paso to be with his sons when Cesar was stabbed. He never planned to stay in El Paso as long as he did, but he felt that his family needed him, so he stayed another week.

After all night meetings, he got a moment to himself. Leaning back in his seat, he opened the envelope that Benedict gave him when he got home late Saturday night, early Sunday morning. When he saw who it was, it blew his mind. At no time, would he have ever looked at that person to be the one that not only took the pictures, but also sold them.

Because of that, he had no idea how to handle it. He asked Benedict to give him a few days to think it over, and that has come and gone. Still he has no idea what to do. If he does what he should, too many in his family will be hurting with this person not around anymore. If he doesn't do what he should do, others may think they can do the same thing and get away with it. In addition, even if they were caught, he cannot ever talk with them and do what should be done, firing or keeping them away from his family if he does not do the same here with this person.

Mulling it over, the governor came to a decision. He picked up his phone and dialed Benedict's cell phone. A few rings later, Benedict was on the line. "Mr. Benedict, good morning, sorry for disturbing you." Mr. Benedict greeted the governor back and told him he wasn't disturbing him at all. "The reason I'm calling you is about the item you gave me yesterday. I've been giving it a lot of thought and still haven't reached a decision on what I'm going to do here."

"Governor I understand how hard this is and I'll wait for your decision. No one will know that you know about the one that took the pictures and then sold them to the tabloid until you are ready for them to know. Until then, you and I are the only ones that know and I plan to keep it that way."

"Again thank you for that! I'm sorry for putting you into a position like this, but I need to make sure the decision I make is the right one for all concerned. For now what I would like you to do is limit this person's access to the family without letting the person know we know. Make sure whenever the person is around my family, nothing gets through like cameras, video recorders, tape recorders and anything else a person can make a buck on."

"No problem sir, I will take care of that immediately. In order for the person in question to not catch on, I'm going to make it a general rule overall. That way if ever asked, my staff and I can honestly tell them that we are doing this to everyone because we are still not sure who was the one that took the pictures."

"Good, I love the plan." The governor breathed a little better hearing what he just heard on how things are going to be dealt with. "Now as far as the boys and the rest of the family, I do not want them to ever find out. Barbara knows because I told her before I left, but no one, I mean no one else must find out."

"I understand sir and promise I will do everything I can to make sure that happens. I will also make sure the person in question and anyone else will never do what this person did again. We are learning as we go and this lesson is that even those that are close to the family we are guarding can actually be the one that might be doing the harm."

Before hanging up to get into his next meeting, the governor talked with Benedict about a few more procedures. Once they got through those topics, the governor presented an idea to Benedict that blew him away. Lucky for Benedict the governor didn't ask for an answer right there and then, because he didn't have one.

Back at El Paso High School, the students were all making their way to their first period class. Josh and Cesar walked in as the first warning bell rang. When they got to their desks, the tardy bell sounded. The instructor took roll call during the morning announcements. The announcements started out normally, but halfway through the principal appeared on the television.

"Good morning students and faculty. I hope you all are having a good start of the week and if not, I hope the news I have to deliver brightens up your day. As you all know our Los Tigres competed in the Hanks Annual Chorus Competition over the weekend. The one thing you all might not know is that our school has never won that competition, at least until this weekend. Los Tigres blew the other chorus groups out of the water over the weekend and brought home for the first time the first place trophy and the top soloist trophy. So congratulations to all those in Los Tigres that made this happen."

The students started to cheer, which surprised Josh. Whenever an announcement is made of the chorus groups, band, math club or any club like that wins, they do not cheer as they are cheering now. Normally they save the cheering and celebrating when the football team, basketball teams and any other sport like that wins.

"Before I conclude the morning announcements, I would like to send out personnel congratulations to one of our very own, Joshua Lopez. Last Friday he was awarded something that many singers strive to get in their entire career, and he got it in just one day of sales of his first CD. For those that haven't heard yet, our very own Joshua Lopez was awarded his first, of many, gold records from George Strait.

He has brought pride to our school and city. Not only that, he has broken so many records that will take me all morning to go through by getting his gold record. Whenever you see this young man in the halls, cafeteria or in the classrooms, shake his hand and congratulate him on his success. Accomplishing what he has accomplished at his age is short of a miracle."

The TV screen turned blue and everyone in Josh's class turned their attention to him. There was a few seconds of quiet, but that didn't last long. Almost all at once, all the students got up from their desks and made their way to Josh, some patting him on the back, and others shaking his hand. It took the teacher twenty minutes to get her students back in their seats, and by then, half of the period was over.

Pretty much the rest of the morning was like that for Josh. Every student that saw him congratulated him whenever they saw him. He didn't mind the attention, but he didn't think he deserved it. Yes, his CD broke records, but that is thanks to those that bought it. Those kinds of fans are the kind that all artists hope for.

While Josh was trying to get through the morning, Father Gomez was making his way to the UTEP campus to speak with Patrick and Antonio's sister. He called ahead to not only make sure she was not in class, but she was willing to speak with him. Once she said yes, gave the father the time and place, he was in his car.

Since he has never been anywhere else on the campus of UTEP, except the football stadium, he got lost looking for the science building. When he figured out where it was, he started kicking himself in the butt for not seeing it before. He had passed it several times before, and had no idea that was the building he was looking for.

Parking wasn't as hard as he thought which made up some of the time he lost looking for the building. After locking the doors to his car, he made his way as quickly as he could to the entrance. When he reached the stairs, he saw a young lady standing there off to the side. There was no doubt in his mind the young lady is the boy's sister.

"Marlene..." Father Gomez said in a low, but quizzing voice. "My name is Father Gomez. I called you earlier to meet with you this morning." She shook the father's hand when he reached the top step. "Thank you for giving me some of your time this morning, I know you have to be busy with school and all."

"It's no problem at all Father Gomez." Marlene forced a smile. She really didn't want to be seen talking to a priest, but she is doing it because her brothers asked. "I was getting a little worried there when you didn't show up on time. I came out in hopes to see you, which I did a couple of times when you circled the building."

Father Gomez laughed as he held the door open. "Yeah I got a little lost and then when I got my bearings and realized the building that I was circling was the building I was looking for, I felt like a duffas." Marlene couldn't help herself, she cracked up laughing. She has never heard the word duffas before.

"I don't know if you know what is going on with your brothers." Marlene stopped the father and told him that she knows that they are staying with him, but anything else, she has no idea. "Well you're right, they are staying with me and my niece. Patrick I have already adopted, and Antonio, well I'm waiting to go in front of a judge and get permanent custody of him. That might take a while, and that's why I am here."

"I hope you get custody of my younger brother. He deserves a lot better than my parents have given him and me for that matter. The poor guy has been treated like trash the last couple of years. No one deserves that, I mean no one."

"I'm glad to hear you say that because that is the other reason I'm here, your parents. They have been coming around making trouble that is getting out of hand. I thought that they wouldn't come around and bother your brothers after they were told they lost custody, but they have done the opposite, which scares me. It scares me because they don't fear the police or anyone for that matter."

"Father, my parents don't fear anyone and the sooner everyone figures that out, the sooner things will move along. They have got away with so much, for so many years, they think they're untouchable. That is one of the reasons when I was able to get out of that house, I ran and never looked back."

"Again you are saying all the right things right now. I need you to say those things and much more to the police." Marlene looked at the father as if he was out of his mind. "I know it might not seem right, but your brothers are not adults like you and your parents are making their lives a living hell. I need your help to safeguard them."

"I love my brothers dearly, I really do, but I am out of that house. If I go anywhere near all that stuff, I'll be pulled in and might not be so lucky the second time on getting out. Everything my parents touch turns to crap. I hate them, and I know that is a strong word, but I do. At the same time I love them because they are my parents. I can't do anything to harm them, even though they have no problem doing things to harm me."

"Please Marlene help me, please! Your brothers are doing the same thing you are doing right now. I had hoped that I could appeal to not only your love for your brothers, but also your adult side. You have said several times here and on the phone when we spoke that your parents are evil and should never get custody of your brothers again. If none of you speak out, they might actually get custody back of Antonio."

"I'm sorry, but I won't go to the police like you want me to. There is no way I am going to be the person that sends my parents to jail for the rest of their lives." Marlene looked away. "Don't kid yourself, we both know that is what going to happen if I or my brothers testify against them in court or file a police report against them.

They are my parents father, and because of that I love them." Father Gomez couldn't understand her or the boy's refusal to file a police report. Their parents made their lives a living hell and they now have a chance to end it. However, the next thing Marlene said, explained why. "They are blood and for that reason only is why I won't do it."

"Believe it or not I do understand, but refusing to deal with the evil in this world only makes things worse. Not just for your brothers, but you as well. You were hurt at the hands of your parents and I know you want closure to that. The only way you will get that is to see your parents pay for what they have done."

"Father Gomez it's easier said than done. You can't stand here and tell me that all I have to do is file a police report on my parents, no sir. In a couple months, I will have to face them in court. Sit there in front of everyone and tell them what my childhood was like in that house. That sir I can't do. I have pushed those years way back in my mind and there is nothing that anyone can say or do that will get me talking about them again."

Father Gomez understood where Marlene was coming from. He didn't want to push her in any way, shape or form to something that she felt very uncomfortable doing. At the end of the day all he wants is to help these young kids, not hurt them. If pushing them into filing a police report does the opposite of what he wants, he'd rather not do it.

"Marlene I'm not going to force you to do something that you don't want to do. Not only because I'm a man of the cloth, but it's not in my nature to do so." Father Gomez got up from his seat. "Just remember this; I'll always be here if you ever want to talk. It doesn't matter what it is, I'll be here to listen."

"Thank you Father Gomez, everything my brother Patrick said about you was dead on. I'm sorry that you came down here for something that I'm not willing and able to do right now. I know my brothers are safe now that they live in your house. If that was not the case, I might have answered your question differently."

They both walked together to the doors, Father Gomez stopped when he stepped out on the first step. "Father let me walk you to your car!" Marlene spoke before the father was able to, which surprised him. He didn't object! They walked together talking about Patrick and Antonio. He learned things that he didn't know about Patrick, and some more things that he has been wanting to know about Antonio.

"Thank you Marlene for talking with this old man of the cloth. I know it can't be cool being seen with a priest, and for that I thank you." Father Gomez smiled as he pulled her into a hug. "You take care of yourself and make sure you get out of here with a college degree. Date the boys yes, but you need to make sure at the end of the day you know what you need to do." They broke the hug and Father Gomez got into his car. "Enough of this old man preaching, you know what needs to be done."

Marlene once again said goodbye to the father and waved at him as he backed out. She started walking back to the building when she heard a honk and then brakes screeching, she turned round thinking the worst. When she saw it wasn't Father Gomez, she breathed a little easier as she went to class.

Meanwhile, the day for Josh and gang was going pretty much like the morning, but with a few differences. One of which was what the principal asked the students to do, and that is to take some time and congratulate Josh on his success. Ever student that passed Josh, and the gang, stopped them throughout the day and did just that. Many of them actually asked Josh for an autograph, which he was not prepared for.

The other change was Chris and Angel. Whatever was bothering them earlier in the morning is not bothering them now. They are talking as they were the night of the concert and the party. When Josh saw that, he didn't think it was because of his talk. He figured they were talking because they worked things out on their own, which he loved.

All he wants for Chris is for him to be happy, and that is all. Then everything started to take a turn for the worst between fifth and sixth period. Jacob pulled Chris to the side and asked him if he was dating anyone, which confused Josh. He thought Jacob was happy with his older boyfriend, Dewayne, but maybe not anymore.

He kept his mouth shut and listened to why Jacob asked the question, and he patted himself on the back for doing so. Jacob was not asking Chris that question for himself. He was asking for another of his friends in his group, which Josh liked the idea. He figured if Chris would attempt to go out with this new guy Jacob is talking about, maybe Angel will come to his senses and stop thinking the wrong of Chris.

When Chris was done talking with Jacob, he had a big smile on his face. As Jacob walked away, Josh looked around for Angel and didn't see him anywhere. Once he was sure that Angel wasn't around, he turned his attention back to Chris. He couldn't believe how happy he got over one conversation.

"You are going to tell me everything after school that was said between you and Jacob." Josh laughed as he pulled his friend into him, rubbing the top of his head. "I want to know every detail, but we are going to be late, so after school, okay."

Chris nodded his head with a big grin on his face. Nothing more was said because they had walked into their final class for the day and Angel was there. Both of them stopped smiling as they reached their desk, but Angel already saw the smile. He started wondering what has them smiling. So many thoughts went through his mind, which all of the thoughts he was thinking about were wrong.

Sixth period flew by in no time. Before the boys knew it, the final bell rang. Josh tried to get to Chris before they had left the classroom, but he was too late. Angel had gotten to him first and pulled him out of the classroom as if there was a fire. Josh looked for Chris as he went to his locker and to the SUV, but he had no luck. Chris was nowhere to be seen. Josh felt bad at not being able to talk with his friend, but he had to get home.

The next morning during breakfast, neither Chris nor Angel was around. It got Josh thinking all the wrong thoughts. By lunch, he was getting even more worried when he didn't see Chris. He knew Chris was well because he wasn't sick yesterday or even show he was coming down with anything. Because of that, he was thinking the worse.

Finally, when sixth period rolled around and Chris didn't show up for any of his classes throughout the day, Josh had enough of wondering what was going on. He made up his mind to go and talk with Coach Montoya to find out what was going on as soon as the bell rang. The rest of the period, he couldn't think about anything else.

Finally, the bell rang and Josh was off to the races. He and Cesar quickly made their way to their lockers got what they needed and then made their way to the swimming pool. When they walked in, they saw the coach standing there greeting his swimmers. Taking a deep breath Josh walked over to the coach. Before he was able to say anything, the coach started to talk.

"Josh I know you are not here to rejoin the swim team, so that leaves only one thing, Chris?" Josh nodded his head. "He's okay, just got a touch of the stomach flu. We went out to eat in Juarez last night, and the food didn't sit well with Chris. He was up all night long throwing up, so we decided to keep him home for the day."

Josh relaxed for the first time since breakfast. "Thank you coach, I was getting worried about him. You can't imagine the thoughts that were going through my head on what could have happened to Chris." He chuckled, making Cesar feel better. "Just let me say it would make for a good horror movie." That got the coach and Cesar laughing.

"Josh, I feel his worst days are behind him now since his father is no longer in the picture.

With that said, I know you still care for Chris a lot and if anything bad happens to him, you will be one of the first I tell. He should be back at school tomorrow as long as we don't let him eat anything from Juarez again." Everyone cracked up laughing again.

Josh thanked the coach and made his way out with Cesar at his side. Not once on the ride home did Josh talked about Chris, Angel or Ethan, unlike the night before and pretty much all day today. Cesar enjoyed the break from Chris's drama. Not because he didn't want to help, no that is not all the reason he didn't want to hear about Chris's drama. It was because it was taking up all of his and Josh's time.

After doing their homework, the evening was pretty much the same. The boys spent the early evening in front of the television. Even after dinner, they were in front of the television until it was time for them to go up and get ready for school the next day.

Unlike Friday, Saturday and Sunday night, Josh and Cesar were able to stay awake and cuddle with each other. A couple of times they got each other going, but stopped before they went too far, which at their ages barely touching was too far so when they woke up Wednesday morning, both of them were sporting flying kites in their underwear.

Once they got ready, they joined their brothers at the breakfast table. Grabbing the boy's attention was Barbara. She was all dressed up as if she was going to work. At first, the boys had no idea why she was all dressed up and Barbara saw the confusion in their faces. With a smile on her face, she explained what was going on.

"You guys must have forgotten by the looks on your faces." Barbara started to say as she handed Josh his orange juice. "Your father has a meeting with the president of Mexico and needs me there to entertain the president's wife. We both don't really want to do this, right now, but this meeting has been scheduled for a while now."

The boys looked at each other and then back at their mother. Daniel Jr. spoke up first and told her to be careful up in Austin. He then asked her when she was coming back. Before he finished the question, she answered it, late tonight.

Before heading out herself, she saw the boys off to school and made sure Rose had everything she needed for the twins. Once she felt there was nothing more she could do, she headed to the airport. Several hours later, she was landing in Austin, where there was a car waiting for her to take her to the mansion.

Halfway from the airport and the mansion, she asked the driver to make a quick stop at the governor's office. He nodded and changed lanes to exit off the highway. Fifteen minutes later, they were driving to the backside of the office building, where Barbara got out of the limousine and made her way to her husband's office. The secretary looked up, but when she saw who was walking in, she didn't stop the first lady of Texas.

After a couple of light taps on the door, Barbara opened it and walked in. Daniel looked up and smiled when he saw his wife walking towards him. He got up from his desk and made his way around it. Just as he made it to the front of the desk, he stretched out his arms and pulled Barbara into a hug.

"I know you have been dreading this meeting since you heard about it. Now with what is going on back home and New Mexico, the meeting is taking on a new tone. You hold your ground and make sure you don't let that man leave this office without doing what is right and that is turning over those two he refused to hand over."

"I know honey, but by what we are hearing from his staff, he's not going to bend. If that is true, I am going to have to play hardball that might come off as if I am being a spoiled kid that didn't get what he wanted for Christmas."

"No it won't, since the average Texan and American are a lot smarter than the press and the others that have sat in your seat have given them credit for! What you are going to demand is right and if people don't see that, well then they're blind. When this is all over, you will come out as a man that stands for the right, not wrong."

Daniel Sr. loves it when he has a chance to talk with his wife before a meeting that he really does not want to be in. She always seems to find a way to make him feel good about what he is about to do, no matter what it is.

"Before you say it, I know I have to get going. I just wanted to see you before heading to the mansion to play hostess to a woman that looks like she ate her young." Daniel cracked up laughing. "I love you and hopefully I'll see you before I leave back to El Paso later on this evening." Barbara leaned in and kissed her husband on the lips.

Before she turned to walk out, Daniel told her that he loved her as well. When she got out to the outer office, she stopped and spoke with her husband's secretary to make sure he had everything he needed for the meeting. When the secretary pulled out the book that she had left and started to go line by line, she knew that her husband was in good hands. She stopped the secretary, thanked her and made her way out. As she made her way back to the limousine, she ran into Rich, and they greeted each other.

Governor Lopez looked up from his desk when he heard a knock on his door. He saw Rich popping his head in, so he waved him into the office. He put the folder down that he was working on and got up. Looking at his watch, he walked around his desk for the second time in less than five minutes.

"Governor Lopez, the president of Mexico, President Carlos Salinas de Gortari, are about to arrive. I don't know if you want to meet him at the front or have him escorted over here to your office." Rich stood wondering if his boss is going to take the high road.

"Since the press is out in full force in front of this office, I'll meet the president at the front. I'll use tact when we talk, but at the same time. I'll get what I want, and that is the two Americans that broke the law. They have to face the law of this country for what they had done wrong. There will be no exceptions to that."

Daniel straightened his tie and walked with Rich to the front of the building. They waited inside until they saw the motorcade pull up. Once it stopped, Daniel walked out and stood at the top of the stairs. He really didn't want this meeting with the president of Mexico, but it has been on the books since the last administration.

The cameras started to flash the minute Daniel walked out of the building. He looked straight ahead, ignoring the questions being asked. The door of the car opened and President Gortari got out of his car. He waved at the press as he made his way up the stairs to Governor Lopez. They shook hands with each other and allowed the press to take a few pictures before heading into the building.

On the way to the governor's office, the conversation between the Mexican president and the governor was nothing but small talk. Basically, each of them asked about the others family and if the first lady arrived at the mansion okay. Once they walked into the office, they got right down to business.

They talked on relationships between Texas and Mexico. How they can better their relationship where both sides benefit. As the two men talked, Governor Lopez really did not give the President of Mexico any clue where he stands on any of the topics they were talking about. In fact the president of Mexico was more confused now than he was when the meeting first started.

"As you know I'm not the one that set up this meeting with you, it was the last administration. I kept it on the books out of respect to our relationship between the two countries. If it wasn't for that reason alone, I would have never scheduled a meeting with you on any topics that are between our two governments. I believe all that should be at the federal level, not here at the state level.

With that said, I do have a topic to talk with you about though. Members of my staff have been speaking with members of your staff about this very topic. I'm not very happy with what I am hearing from your side. If you want a good relationship between you and me, we need to resolve this issue. I hope we can come to a solution that is right and neither side loses standing with their people."

Governor Lopez got up to get him a coke to drink. He got one for the president of Mexico as well. As he sat down, he saw the expression on the president's face; he is not going to give him the answer he wants. Daniel figured that if he does not get the answer that he wants, he is ready to play hardball with Mexico.

"Governor Lopez, I have weighed what is going on right now in New Mexico. You know if a citizen of our country makes their way across the border, we will not surrender him or her over to any country. If an American comes across and we catch them, that is a totally different story. Beth Alvarez is a totally different story."

"With all due respect President Gortari, are you willing to let this affect our relationship. Let me say it another way. By your unwillingness to turn over those two American citizens, you are showing me that you only want and not give in return. Don't you be mistaken; Beth Alvarez is an American citizen."

"You are wrong there Governor Lopez, she was born in Mexico. That makes her a Mexican citizen before anything else. You should respect that more than anyone else should. Although your family may not have come from Mexico, you are still Mexican no matter where you were born."

Governor Lopez didn't respond right away. He bit his tongue, because if he didn't, he would have said something that he would not be able to take back. This is one of the reasons that he didn't want to take this meeting. He has heard that this president time in and time again say that the new governor of Texas is one of them.

"Mrs. Alvarez took an oath to follow the laws of this land when she became a citizen. She broke the law and broke the oath that she made when she did what she did to her own son. Now she is asking you guys to help her get away from what she had done wrong. That I can't and won't stand for!

Both of the American citizens you have in your custody must be turned over to the El Paso Police Department immediately. If you choose to grant her request, I will follow up with everything I can do as governor of this state. You know the kind of power a governor has and can do for your country."

"I have made my decision on this matter. I will grant her request and release her to be on her way. If the gentleman that came across with her does marry her, he will be released as well once they do get married. It makes him a citizen of our country by marriage.

As far as you doing something to my country, you can't. We have already signed the North American Free Trade Agreement. With what I understand about your laws, a state can't pass a law that tries to override a law that has been passed by your federal government."

"You are right on all those points. NAFTA has been signed, but not ratified yet by our government. You are also right that a state can't pass a law to push aside a law that has been passed by our federal government. That is where you are wrong; I can do a lot more harm to your country without passing a law.

Since you studied up before coming here, I hope you studied up on me. If you did, you will know how I work. Before I go into battle, I let the other side know what I am about to do and how I plan to get there, and yes you heard me right, I said battle.

The very first thing I will do is raise state taxes on every business in this state that has any dealings with your country. The federal government can't stop me from doing that. When I say I am going to raise the taxes, it will not be a few cents.

I will place my national guard at the borders and check every citizen from your country that comes across. They will have standing orders to arrest any that have records in this country or yours. The others, I will just have them sent right back over even if they have the right paperwork. They won't be able to come over and make a living. Without them making money, they can't spend in your country on what they don't have.

I won't stop there. Every business that is owned by a citizen from your country will get higher taxes dealing with anything in the state. I'll have every state office go in and do spot checks on these companies. If they flunk any inspection, they will receive the highest fine possible. It will get to a point they will have to shut their doors.

That is just the beginning. If you still refuse, I will move on to stage two. Trust me President Gortari, you don't want me to even start in on stage one. You can call up President Bush, but there's nothing he can do for you. I'll be in my right to do everything I'm doing. So are you sure you want to continue down this road?"

"The question you just asked me you should be asking yourself. Let me use one of your old sayings, you are playing in the big league now. Are you willing to do all that for just two people? If I were you, I would do the right thing. Your federal government can come in here and pull out a lot more funding from this state that you really need and can't make up by raising taxes on just citizens from my country."

"If they do that, fine I'll accept that. The way I have moved my state, we can go without the small funding the federal government gives our programs. Moreover, you are wrong, with all the new taxes I will put in place will bring in a lot more money than the federal government gives my state. I looked at every outcome before I came to this conclusion. Every move I'm doing will not harm a citizen of this state. It will make it a lot better in fact."

President Gortari got up from his seat and walked out of the governor's office. Governor Lopez didn't follow the president; instead he went back to what he was doing before the president arrived. Rich and other members of his staff just sat there not knowing what to do. They could see that the governor doesn't seem to be bothered by anything that just happened, which bothers them.

"Governor Lopez, you know President Gortari is going to walk through the front doors of this building? He is going to have the entire press corp. to talk to about what just happened in here. Don't you think that we should try and pull him in?"

"No, I want him to talk to the press corp. I want the press corp. to run this story over and over again. It will come across as I am standing up to the president of Mexico. He is wrong here and he knows he should turn over those two Americans. The citizens of this state and this country are very smart! They will see who is right and who is wrong here."

Rich ordered the staff out of the governor's office before trying to talk the governor into giving in some, but Governor Lopez refused. He stood his ground and Rich finally gave up. He walked out of the office over to his. He wanted to make a game plan so when this hits the fan, he can help the governor through the minefields that will be before him.

By two, the governor had enough of the calls and hearing about what the president of Mexico said to the press. He had his secretary call in his press secretary. The press secretary stayed around the governor's office because he knew his governor. He knew that the governor he serves would not stand idly by and allow anyone, no matter who that person is, come in and do what the president of Mexico was doing and saying.

Therefore, when the governor asked him to gather the press, he was ready for it. He told the governor that they were ready whenever he was. Happy with the answer, the governor asked him to inform the press that he was going to brief them in an hour and a half, at four thirty their time. The press secretary confirmed the time and headed out.

Twenty minutes before the press conference, Rich and a couple other members of the governor's staff walked in to make sure he had everything he needed. The main thing they were concerned about was what the governor was going to say. The response he gave, worried them a little, but then Rich remembered that is how the governor got elected. The voters of this state loved the man because he spoke from his heart, and never from a prepared speech.

Five minutes till it was time for the governor to give his speech, the governor, Rich and a couple of others from his administration made their way to where the press were waiting. Once out the door, Governor Lopez made his way to the podium where he looked out to the press and made eye contact with the camera. Just as he looked into the camera, the television screens all over El Paso High School turned on. A few minutes before the governor walked out, Principal Michaels announced that they were going to watch history in the making.

"Good afternoon and thank you all for coming down this afternoon. I know you have a busy news day and I'm just adding to it. Let me say first that I try my best to keep out of the national news, but this issue needs to be front and center for all Americans.

By now, you all know I had a meeting with President Carlos Salinas de Gortari of Mexico. This meeting was scheduled before I took office as governor of Texas. I kept the meeting because I wanted to keep the good relationship we have with Mexico, more so now that our Federal Government is working out the final kinks of NAFTA.

At the same time, a local matter has hit our local news. A matter that I am way too familiar with and hoped that it wouldn't come back to haunt me again. A citizen from Alamogordo, New Mexico was taken and placed into a camp that claims they can change a sexual orientation of a person. This camp was located between the borders of New Mexico and Texas, just outside of El Paso. That is why it was brought to my attention.

I won't go over the details since it has been all over local and national news. Our TV'S have been blanketed with images of this camp and the teenagers that were brought out of that camp. What I will do is take responsibility of what is happening within the borders of the state I have been elected to represent. These camps will be located and shut down wherever they are here in Texas.

As I have said, this is hitting excessively close to home with me. Just before I became governor, my ex-wife tried to send one of my sons to one of these camps. I shut that camp down before becoming governor. Now I can see there is a lot more of these camps in our state. Let me tell you what I believe about where those camps rank at in my personal opinion.

I believe these camps are no different from the camps Hitler created to put the Jews in. Those camps almost killed off an entire society of people because of what one man believed. Although the gay community is not being gathered up and thrown into these camps by the tens of thousands, if the people that believe in these camps could get their way they would do just that. In their opinion they want to rid this world of a sinful way of life. Just like Hitler believed about the Jews.

They torture and at times even kill the teenagers that are put into these camps just like the camps of Hitler's time. You guys need to understand that these places are wrong and the only way I can make my case is by comparing it to one of the ugliest times of our world history. If we continue to ignore these kinds of camps, and this kind of thinking, they will get as bad as the ones I have mentioned.

Please don't take what I just said wrong. I'm not saying that those that are running the camps are Hitler's, but the camps themselves are just like the Hitler camps. Many teenagers are sent in there and never seen again. They leave in body bags. The parents that send them there have already written their kids off as dead so when they are told their kid actually is, they bury their child and moved on.

Those that come out of these camps, so called changed, struggle for the rest of their lives! They never lead a normal life, if they live at all. Some may think they are changed, but if they actually look at themselves, they would see that they were not. No one can choose to be gay or straight, it just happens.

President Gortari and I are at odds on how to go about the two American citizens..."

The governor went into detail about what was discussed between him and President Gortari. He explained about the two wanted individuals that fled across the border of Mexico. He spoke about President Gortari refusing to surrender the two Americans to the El Paso Police Department. Ignoring the agreement between the two governments about extradition! He finished off with what he plans to do to get the two wanted Americans.

"In every generation, there is a battle of rights that are fought by the generation able to make changes for the better. The generations before mine fought for equal rights for woman, African Americans and Indians for example. What is so different about the gay community? This is a battle I believe is the battle for my generation to fight. We must get over our fears and pass laws that give equal rights under the law to the gay community.

I hope what has been blanketed all over our TV screens is a wakeup call. We can no longer stand by and allow the youth of our nation to be sent to these camps and killed off because they are gay. I am making my stand here and demanding the Mexican government turn over those two that are wanted here in the United States. If they refuse, I will not hesitate to execute what I explained to you all earlier.

I'm not stopping there. The next bill I will be sending to my state houses is a bill that gives equal rights under our state laws to the gay community. A bill that is long overdue that I should have done as my first bill when I became governor. I am asking the people of my state to put aside their differences and back me on this bill. Let's stop killing those that are different and let them live with the same rights we all live with."

Governor Lopez stopped talking for a few seconds and just looked straight into the camera. Just then, the bell rang for school to be over, but none of the students budged from their seats. They sat quietly, waiting for the governor to continue talking.

"This is what is called a third rail political topic. Many governors that came before me would never touch this topic. No matter what you do here, you will anger half of the voters. I would not touch an issue if it was not necessary to do so. Some I believe should stay in the hands of the federal government and others can be dealt with at the state level.

At the same time, I cannot stand by and be governor to a state that has places like those that we have seen on our TV'S. I can't look at myself in the mirror every morning with the knowledge of this and the fact I did nothing about it. These kids don't deserve what is happening to them. This society of our country doesn't deserve what is happening to them. If I am a one-term governor because I took on this issue, so be it. I will leave office with my head held high, knowing I did what was right. I govern by what is right and not by the polls.

I would like to close with thanks to several of my fellow governors. The minute that President Gortari talked with the press, I got a call from every governor that borders Mexico. They are putting their support behind me and made it clear they will follow my lead on whatever I end up doing.

We have an agreement between the two countries. If a wanted fugitive lands up across our borders and is caught, we will hand them over to the government that wants them. All that I am asking is what has already been agreed upon between our two countries. Hand over the two wanted individuals and this standoff will end. The decision is left to the Mexican government. Whatever happens from this point on happens because the Mexican government wants it to happen.

Thank you and God Bless the great state of Texas."

The TV screens went blue, but all the students just sat there in their seats. Josh looked over at Cesar, feeling prouder of his father than he has ever felt before. He knew his father was working on a bill that gave him and others like him equal rights, but he never thought it would see the light of day. Now after hearing his father speak, he knows it will not only see the light of day, but it will get an up and down vote.




{Man o man, this story just keeps getting more exciting. First let me welcome you all back to another filled chapter of "Shadow of My Father". As always I hope you enjoyed this chapter. As you can see a few plots that were opened in the others stories are now coming to pass in this story, like the ending.

However, before I get into the ending of the chapter, let me start at the beginning. You all once again got to see Angel and Chris together. There was a little comedy in there when the sink over flowed and made a mess in the kitchen. Can you imagine Chris running around the kitchen trying to clean up that mess? I can, and think it was funny.

I still don't know what to think about Angel, what about you guys. This guy really does play hot and cold. He came in all loving, hot, and then he goes cold. What was up with that? If I was in Chris's shoes, I would just give up, but love makes you do strange things. Chris is really in love with Angel and I don't see that changing in the future.

On the other hand, maybe I am wrong there. Jacob appeared in this story and talked with Chris. Hey, those that are keeping up with all the stories, you know what happens here, so do not give away the ending to those that are not keeping up with all the stories, please. The answer to this plot has already been given away in "Jacob Finding His Way" for those that may not be reading that story.

As we can see, Josh still really cares about Chris. When Chris didn't show up for school the next day, all Josh could think about is what happened to him. If only that character was in everyone, but that might just be in fiction stories. Anyway, I'm glad to hear that Chris was just home sick because he ate something that didn't agree with him.

I don't know if any of you have been to a city in Mexico, but I have. As all of you know, I live in a border town, El Paso and Juarez so what I wrote that happened to Chris actually happened to me several times. I went over, loved the smell of the food that was cooking, but it didn't agree with my stomach, if you get my drift.

Father Gomez had a talk with Patrick and Antonio's sister. How do you think that went? I thought it would have gone better, but just like the father, I can see Marlene's side as well. She has got out of that house and doesn't want to remember a thing that happened to her while she was living there. I don't think that is any good because things always have a way of coming out no matter how far you barrier them. I hope one of them comes to their senses and does what the father wants before it's too late.

Now the ending of the chapter, what can I say about it but wow. Once again those that are keeping up with the four stories, you would know this plot happened way back on "Regrets and Heartaches" chapter eleven. That was a long time ago, so I felt it was needed to go over it again in this chapter.

I loved the way the governor dealt with the president of Mexico and then went out to the press and talked with them. Way too often our government turns a blind eye to what is going on right before them. Just in the last month, two gay teenagers took their lives because they couldn't live with being gay. One was bullied and the other just couldn't go on being who he was. Our society has done this and it is high time that people stop thinking the way they are thinking about being gay is wrong. Stop the bulling and making the youths of our nation, our world, a living hell because of whom they love.

Enough with me being on my soapbox, so much happened in this chapter I am sure I forgot a lot in this corner. If I did, and it is important, I am sure Trevor will cover it in his corner, Before I leave you guys, I feel I need to remind you that there is a lot of plots coming into this story in the next couple chapters that have been opened in the other stories. Some you all have asked about and wondered why they have not been closed. Well here in this story, you will get your answers. So hold onto your hats ladies and gentleman, the ride is just beginning!

I could stay here all day long, with all the open plots already in this story, but I will not. I warn you though! Do not 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!}



I'm not up with American politics but I'm learning fast and all I can say is I wish we had a governor like Daniel Sr. here in OZ. The Governor will have a tough job getting the gay rights bill through the Texas legislature and I wish him luck. I agree with Jacob on a lot of what he said in his corner and it's possible I might repeat what he's already said but I am worried sick about gay suicides especially among young guys. This problem isn't just an American one because it his happening all over the world. Since homosexuality has been brought more into the open I think we all thought life would be easier for us that the persecution would stop. Wrong, it appears to be getting worse and I feel deeply sorry for young gay people these days that get a feeling of false security because of all that publicity only to find themselves being bashed, bullied and mistreated. I'd better get off my soapbox before I fall off.

As for Angel, well I feel sorry for him because he is so confused about his sexuality right now and I hope he doesn't go on to become another statistic. Bernice and Eric have found themselves a job; I bet they do not realize how difficult it is being in the workforce, especially looking after the general public.

Personally, I think the Governor and Barbara should have made Josh, Cesar and their other sons aware of the Tabloid pictures because it was obvious that they are going to find out eventually and in the scene we saw an unpleasant way.

The cliffhanger regarding those pictures is still hanging in there and more than likely tormenting the life out of you. Well I'm sorry but our author friend is playing a waiting game. Finally, I don't think father Gomez should give up trying to convince Patrick his brother and sister from telling all. Evil parents like those that they have should never be allowed to get away with it no matter how thick the blood is.

Please write and let us know your thoughts we love hearing from you.

Hugs Trevor