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 can't be distributed in any way, shape or form without author's express written consent.}

Story Written by: J.P.G.

Love Scenes Written By: Trevor

Edited By: "Daddy" Rick

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 24


The entire day all that Eric and Bernice could think about is what Josh did for them. During lunch they arranged a ride by calling Father Gomez who was more than happy to take them. That was the only time they talked about the offer. Whenever the others in the group got close to the subject, either Eric or Bernice changed the subject.

As soon as the bell rang, they did what they needed at their lockers and quickly went out the doors. They found Father Gomez exactly where they asked him to be and got into the car. It took more time getting out of the parking lot than it did getting down Schuster and onto the freeway. When they reached downtown, they were in bumper to bumper traffic.

When Father Gomez opened up the subject about the jobs they are applying for, they didn't get mad or try and change the subject. However, they didn't give long answers either. They answered all of his questions. By the time they drove up to Jacob's office building, Father Gomez got the hint that they were not as excited as he was about the opportunity they were getting from this connection Josh made for them.

He parked on the street and got out with Eric and Bernice, but it wasn't to go up with them. He had to put money in the meter where he parked or he would get a ticket. He walked over to the meter, while Eric and Bernice started to walk over to the main building. He yelled out good luck as he got back into the car.

Neither of them said a word as they rode up the elevator to the top floor. When they stepped out, they put smile on their faces and walked over to the secretary to ask for Ana as they were requested to. The secretary informed them that Ana was in a meeting, but should be out soon. They understood and found a seat in the lobby.

It wasn't even five minutes when they heard their names being called. Quickly they stood up and walked over to a middle aged women standing there with a big smile on her face. She introduced herself as Ana, no last name and asked them to follow to her office. Along the way, Eric and Bernice introduced themselves.

Once they made it to the office, the introductions were done. "I understand from Jacob that you guys are okay starting anywhere in the organization, is that correct?" Anna looked over at Eric and Bernice as she took her seat behind the desk and pointed to the seats in front of the desk for them to sit down.

"Um, to tell you the truth we were surprised by Jacob's offer this morning. Our friend Josh is the one that really knows Jacob and he is the one that got us connected with Jacob. So out of respect to our friend, and the great offer and trust Jacob is given us, we are willing to start anywhere."

Ana started to laugh, not meaning to. "That is a long answer to a question that I normally get a yes or no." Ana pulled out two files and handed them to Eric and Bernice. She saw the looks on their faces and knew right then and there that these two didn't want to be here. However, she couldn't figure out why.

"Look if you guys don't truly want this opportunity, let me know right now because there are a lot of other people out there that would kill to get the job that you guys are applying for." Ana pulled back the files. "I know flipping burgers isn't a dream job, but many people have made a career out of this."

Eric felt like crap that he was unable to hide his true feelings on being there. "I'm sorry ma'am, it isn't that we don't want to flip burgers, we are fine with that. It's just we want to get our job on our own like we did with our former job."

Ana looked down at her desk and opened her binder. The dead silence in the office drove Eric and Bernice up the wall. They had no idea what she was reading and that bothered them the most. When she finally closed her notebook and looked up at them, they straightened up in their seats and prepared for the worst.

"I am aware of what happened to you two at your former jobs." Both Eric and Bernice jaws dropped. "It shouldn't have been a surprise to you guys that I was going to check up on you before hiring you. I do that with every applicant no matter who is recommending them for a job. That includes the owner himself.

The store manager, a Mr..." Ana started flipping through her notes. "Mr. William Brown gave you both very good recommendations. What bothered me the most though was the short period of time that you were at Taco Tote. Mr. Brown couldn't tell me why you left because it is against the law to give that information out, but I found out."

Ana leaned forward and looked straight at Bernice. "Bernice what happened to you at that store was wrong and they know that because of the reorganization they have done. However that still doesn't excuse them for not acting quicker on this issue. Since they were aware of what that employee was doing way before you came along by other complaints filed against him, they should have fired him, at least I would have. Since they didn't, they are playing catch up. You have a good case against them, if you choose to take what happened to you any further.

With that said, I also understand where you guys are coming from as far as getting a job on your own merits, which you wouldn't be getting here." Ana sat back in her chair and looked at both Eric and Bernice. "Still I understand that you don't want to owe anyone. So I have a question for you. Is it just your friends being the problem here job or you won't accept help from anyone getting a job?"

Eric and Bernice looked at each other trying to put together their thoughts. "Ma'am, it isn't our friends being involved helping us get a job. We are very grateful and willing to take any job that you have open for us. I promise you if you give us a chance, Eric and I will prove to you why our friends believe in us so much."

"Okay I hear you guys and I have a deal for you." Eric and Bernice leaned forward a little nervous, but interested in what Ana had to offer. "Before coming to work here at the Angel Corporation, I managed a Taco Bell on this side of town. I have stayed in touch with the manager that took over my store. In fact, I talked with her just today and she is looking for a couple of good workers for her evening crew.

So here is what I am thinking. I call my friend at my old restaurant and tell her that I have found two great young kids that will fit right in at her place. In return, you guys take those jobs and do what you told me here. Prove to her and everyone else that you are great workers and what happened at Taco Tote wasn't your fault.

Also this allows you guys not to feel beholden anyone for getting you a job since you aren't working here for the Angel Corporation." Eric and Bernice were confused on the last part Ana said, and she saw the confusion. "You guys don't know me from Adam or Eve, so you won't owe me a thing except to do what you said about being good workers.

Other than that, if you stay past your ninety day probationary period, you did it on your own, not because the manager is afraid to let you go because of your connections. Jacob has no connections to Taco Bell. Neither does your friend Josh. So you are going to either succeed or fail on your own. It's all on your shoulders when you get on over there to your new jobs."

That put a smile on both Eric and Bernice's faces. "We accept your offer and are very grateful." Eric answered right away. "We promise that we won't let you down for recommending us for these jobs. Whatever we're asked to do, we will do without hesitation."

"Believe it or not, I know you will. In the little time we have spent together, I see in you two that I can make this recommendation with complete confidence."

Ana picked up the phone and dialed. As she was talking to the manager at Taco Bell, Eric and Bernice were whispering to each other. They were very happy how this meeting turned out. Not only were they able to get jobs, but were able to do it own their own without help from anyone they know.

It didn't take Ana long to close the deal for Eric and Bernice. After she did, she gave them directions to the store and explained that they didn't need to go down today, but be prepared to start work when they walk in tomorrow. Eric and Bernice kept thanking her for everything she had done as they walked out the office.

By the time they reached the lobby, Ana had lost count on how many times the two young teenagers thanked her. She tried to tell them there was no need for them to keep thanking her, but they kept doing it. With smiles from one side of their faces to the other, they shook Ana's hand and thanked her one last time before walking to the elevator.

While Eric and Bernice were heading down to Father Gomez, Detective Pablo Alvarez was setting up the final step of his child pornography sting. He has been working on this case for almost a year now, and his bosses wanted results. Results he has been promising for months, but has not delivered.

A little over a year ago, Detective Alvarez arrested a young girl working the streets. When he was booking her and was about to send her into the juvenile system, her finger prints got a hit. She wasn't a juvenile and had a record of arrests as long as her arm. She had been arrested in New Mexico, Arizona and Oklahoma under different names and ages, and her finger prints were taken and put into the system.

When he got the hit, he halted the transfer and started to redo the paperwork when she gave him information that he couldn't ignore. Working with a young assistant district attorney, they vacated the arrest. Instead she was sent to David L. Carrasco Job Corps Center. He wanted her to have a chance for a future with some kind of education and training behind her.

It took months for him to get his bosses to give him the green light on the information she gave him. Once they did, he spent every free moment he had on the case, which wasn't much. His bosses did not give him any additional officers at first so he had to do all the leg work. Once he started to show that the information wasn't bogus, his bosses started to assign departmental resources to the case.

The last several months had been even more productive, so he was given a task force. However, the well had dried up in the last two weeks, which wasn't making his bosses happy. This morning his bosses called him in. They made it clear that they wanted an arrest on this investigation soon or they were going to shut it down and cut their losses.

He thought that they were going to give him at least a couple more weeks, but they didn't. They only gave him seventy two hours to come up with an arrest. Not happy with the timetable, he accepted it and walked out of his boss' office going straight to the abandoned house where they had set up their surveillance.

When he walked in, the plain clothes officers were surprised to see him there. They briefed him on what they had seen overnight, which wasn't much. He had hoped that they had more concrete evidence, that there was some kind of prostitution going on at the house they were watching, but nothing. There wasn't enough evidence to go in front of a judge and ask for a warrant.

Frustrated that all the work he has done in the last year might go all up in smoke in three days, he knew he had to do something that he normally wouldn't do. He sat down and started to think what he hasn't done yet. As he sat there an officer that was assigned to him dropped his cup of coffee, bringing Paul out of his thoughts.

He looked over at the young officer that he hated only because he was forced to take him. It wasn't that he didn't think the officer was any good. It was because he barely graduated from the police academy. The young man didn't look like he had graduated from high school let alone the police academy. That had Paul worried because the criminals wouldn't take him seriously if he ever had to arrest one, which would put his fellow officers in danger.

As he looked at the young officer, he got an idea. "Officer Mooney, can you please come over here for a minute." Officer Mooney stopped gathering the pieces of glass from the broken coffee cup and looked up at Detective Alvarez. Paul could see the fear in the poor guy's eyes, but didn't say a word to him until he came over.

"Officer Mooney, I have an idea, but I don't want you to say a word until I finish telling you what I am thinking." The young officer nodded his head nervously. "You look like you're still in high school, which will be an advantage with an idea I have." Paul got up and walked over to the window.

"We know there is something very wrong going on over there, but we don't have proof. All day and night we see guys of all ages walking in out of there. There is just no way that the residents of that house are that popular. Don't get me wrong, I know people get guests, but not as many guests as they get throughout the day."

The other officers joined Mooney to hear what Detective Alvarez has come up with. "Like me, each of you has given up a lot this past year on this sting and I am sure you want to see something come out of our hard work. Our bosses informed me this morning I have seventy two hours to make an arrest or they are going to close us down.

I don't know about you guys, but I'm not willing to let all the hard work go down the drain." Detective Alvarez turned and looked at his officers. "I'm not standing here saying we must bend the law to get an arrest. I'm against that and dislike those that do it. That's not what we are here to do. We are here to uphold the law, all the laws, not just the ones we like.

With that said, I am thinking we should go deeper undercover over there." Detective Alvarez walked over to the table and started to draw on a long sheet of paper. "You Officer Mooney have an innocent face; no one would ever think you're a cop. Your youth will play to our advantage here and let me tell you how.

You get wired up and walk on over there. We have already learned the key phrases they use to get into the house, so you won't have any problem getting in. While you are in there, we set up over here and wait for you to give us the green light to go in. Once you do that, we will go busting in and arrest you along with everyone else, once we get you down to the police station, we get you out of the group of those arrested."

The officers looked at the paper on the table where Paul drew the house and where each of them will be going in once Nick gives the green light. "I like the plan sir, but when do I know it's the right time to give you the green light. I mean do I wait for a lot of people to be in there or when I see proof that the law is being broken."

"Either one would suit me fine. I want a lot of arrests, but at the same time I want this place closed down. Also, I don't want you in there any longer than necessary. We don't know what they would do if they figure out that you are an officer. I don't see that happening if you don't give it away."

"Nick and I went through the academy together and I can say he'll be able to handle this job without a problem." Nick's partner slapped him on the shoulder. "The only questions I have is there going to be more guys than just us backing up Nick here and when is all this going to go down?"

"I will make sure we have SWAT on standby plus several more units around the area ready to come in to assist if needed. As far as when, we are going to do this, tonight!" The officers looked up at Paul. "I know we only have a couple of hours to get this done, but I have no other choice but to send in Officer Mooney tonight. If things don't work out, we have two more nights to try and get the bust."

The officers understood, and didn't question Paul. Instead they started to get ready for the sting. Nick and his partner went into the other room to learn how the wire works, while the others were checking their weapons. Detective Alvarez was making the phone calls needed to get SWAT and extra units in the area when he needed them.

Meanwhile, in Austin Al was exiting out of one meeting heading into another when his secretary called him into his office for an important phone call. She didn't tell Al who it was until he got inside his office because she didn't want the information to leak to the press. Over the years she has learned to never speak about anything in the hallways if she doesn't want it to become front page news.

"A gentleman by the name of Alberto Castaneda is on the line for you." Al looked at his secretary with a confused look on his face. "He claims that he is representing the President of Mexico in the matter of Beth and Dominic Alvarez." Hearing those two names in the same sentence and the Mexican President, Al understood.

He walked to his desk and sat down. Before answering the call, he pulled out his notebook so he could take notes on the call. "Hello, this is Alfred Serna, how may I help you Mr. Castaneda?"

A heavy voice came over the line speaking broken English. "Senor Serna, I am calling you on behalf of the President of Mexico. He has asked me to deal with the issue concerning the two Americans we have in our jails. From this point I am the only one you are going to be talking to about Beth and Dominic Alvarez."

"I have no problem with that as long as you understand what we want. Those two Americans must be turned over to the state of Texas as soon as possible. The longer this goes on, the harder it will be for my boss to set things back to the way they were without being asked questions about why he is stepping back."

"I agree Seņor Serna, That's why I am calling you today. My President can't be seen anywhere near this, but he has given permission to do what it takes to end this standoff. Our economy is hurting and we cannot take much more of this. So we must come to a peaceful resolution quickly."

"I agree Mr. Castaneda, but once again, your government knows where Governor Lopez stands. The only way this is going to end any time soon is by Mexico turning over both of the Americans, not just one of them as I was told by the other representatives that came here to Austin and spoke with me."

"Yes Seņor and I am calling you to let you know that we are willing to take further steps to end this whole thing. First, as the other representatives promised, Dominic Alvarez will be turned over. He is currently being transported to the Bridge of America's in El Paso. Please have whomever you want to be there to take custody of him.

Now the second thing we are willing to do is turn over Beth Alvarez, but not today, but two weeks from now. She is still in our custody and won't be going anywhere. However, before we do that, we need your Governor to do some things for us so we know you mean what you are saying."

"First, this is not how things are going to be done. All this started because your government refused to honor the treaty your government signed with ours. Instead, your President thought that he could fight this out in the press and when that didn't work, he thought he could go to President Bush to twist Governor Lopez's arm. As you found out real fast that didn't work either.

Now with that said, this is what we are willing to do. Once we have Dominic Alvarez in custody, we will pull the National Guard away from the borders and stop surprise inspections to business' that are owned by residents of Mexico. Everything else will stay in place until we get Beth Alvarez. If your government doesn't deliver her to us as promised, everything we are taking away here today will go back into place. On top of that, we will get even harsher. Trust me when I say you do not want that to happen."

"I agree we don't want that to happen. I will make sure we deliver on the promises I am making here today to you. Just make sure you deliver on the promises you are making me so I don't look bad going to my President telling him one thing and something else happens."

"I am a man of my word, and so is Governor Lopez." Al looked over to the clock on the wall and saw it was getting late. "Since it is getting late already, I need to get the personnel down at the border to take Dominic Alvarez into our custody and then inform the Governor about what we talked about here. As I said, once we have Dominic, I will follow through on what I promised."

Both agreed to end the call and not talk again until Beth is being turned over. They are going through back channels, and they don't want to be found out that they are coming to an end of the standoff this way. Both of the leaders need to come out and look strong, and the only way that is going to happen is by them looking like they both are getting what they want.

As Al was making the phone calls he needed to, Josh and Cesar were finishing up their homework. They put aside their books jumped on the bed to lie beside each other and talk since they knew it was almost time for dinner. Before they could really get a conversation going, they heard a knock on the door. There was no doubt in their minds who was on the other side of the door. In unison they invited Brandon in.

Brandon cracked the door open and stuck his head in. "How did you guys know it was me knocking?" Pushing open the door, Brandon walked completely in.

"Your timing is always the same." Josh started to chuckle as he sat up on the bed. "It seems whenever Cesar and I are having alone time, you walk in." Josh could see that he made Brandon feel bad. "Come on Brandon, you know you can come and bother us whenever you want to. I was just teasing you!"

That put a smile on Brandon's face. He walked over to the bed and sat down between Josh and Cesar. "I need your guy's advice on something that has been bothering me for a while now." Brandon looked at Josh and then over at Cesar and saw they were both listening. "I have been wanting to bring my girlfriend over to meet you guys, but I don't know what mom and dad will say about that."

"What do you mean you don't know what mom and dad are going to say?" Josh was stunned on the last thing his little brother said. "I know they are probably worried about you since they haven't met any of your friends or girlfriend. They're thinking that you're isolating yourself from everyone because of just that."

"I know, but my girlfriend is very nervous about meeting you guys. Put aside that dad is the governor, and you Josh, a famous singer already..." Josh turned all shades of red. "...her family are regular people, with regular jobs. They don't have anyone who is famous in their family while here in this house, we have two."

"Come on little bro, you know she has nothin' to worry about with us." Josh messed up Brandon's hair like their father does to them. "Dad might be the governor and I might have sold a few CDs, but we're as regular as anyone else around here. I'm pretty sure your girlfriend has seen that since she more than likely goes to the same school as us."

Almost jumping off the bed, Josh asked Brandon to tell them about his girlfriend. "Well her name is Leslie Kirkland, and she does go to El Paso High with us. I have her in all my classes; she didn't attend Morehead Junior High. She moved to the Westside over the summer from the Eastside of town."

Cesar interrupted Brandon. "Not to sound rude or anything, but we want to hear about the girl, not where she lived or lives right now. What makes her so special that she has caught your eye?" Cesar winked at Brandon. "I am sure there are a lot of girls out there wanting to date you, why did you choose Leslie?"

"Because she is, um, um..." Brandon looked down at the floor, scratching his head. "She likes me for who I am. I don't have to be someone that I'm not. The other girls I have met this year that want to date me, want me to be someone else, but not Leslie. She is cool with everything that I have been through such as going crazy for a while."

"Let me first say that you didn't go crazy. If anyone would have been in your shoes and gone through what you went through, they would have had reacted the same as you did. So never call yourself crazy." Josh was a little angry that his brother actually thought of himself as crazy because he had to see a therapist for a while.

"And secondly, girls, they are all the same." Josh chuckled as he turned and looked at Cesar, pinching him on the arm. "I don't know if is a girl code or something, but they all want to change the guy they are dating. They want to mold the guy into a different person, which I find strange because that's not the person they first saw and liked. You know they had to see something in the guy that made them interested."

"I agree with Josh, most girls try to change the guy they are dating. There are a few girls out there that aren't like that. By the sounds of it, you found one of them. So thank your lucky stars every day that Leslie is a girl that most guys wish they had."

"I know and I do." Just then they heard their mother calling them down for dinner. Josh, Cesar and Brandon jumped off the bed and started their way down. Along the way, Josh asked his little brother to tell them more about Leslie after dinner, which Brandon was happy to do. In fact, he was going to ask if he could, but Josh beat him to the punch.

Carlos did most of the talking during dinner. He kept going on about what he did with the election, regarding the student council president. Josh didn't see it the same way his brother did. By one less jock in the running for the position Jacob wants, it will make it much harder for his friend to win. The jock vote is no longer split, which means it brings this election a lot closer than where it was just a day before.

Josh interrupted Carlos. "Are you certain that you can bring the jock votes that were going to vote for Victor over to Jacob?" Josh looked at his brother with a serious look on his face. "Because if you don't deliver those votes, you have handed the election over to Markus!" Everyone looked back and forth from Josh and Carlos.

"I have already talked with the guys and they will vote for Jacob now that Victor is out of the race. Just like me, they know who can deliver real things in this election and who can't. Sorry to say our friend, our fellow teammate, can't deliver what Jacob can. We want new equipment, uniforms and many other things that we are going without right now because we don't have the funds."

Not really able to read his brother's face, Josh had to take him at his word. When the day comes and Jacob loses the election because of what his brother did, the only one to blame is Carlos. If the jocks and the popular kids band together and want to keep one of their own in this position, they can barely do it.

Both of the boys dropped the subject. The others at the table were thankful they did because it started to look like it was getting heated between them. The rest of dinner, they talked about their trip to Brownsville and what they will do the next time they get down there. They all agreed they are going to water ski.

As the Lopez family was finishing up dinner, Detective Alvarez and his team were putting their plan into action. Paul had to beg for SWAT, but he got it. However, he didn't get additional units, which will make the job a little harder, but not impossible. When he told his men what he was able to get, they were surprised that he actually got SWAT.

Once it got dark and the traffic going in and out of the house got a little heavier, like it normally does around eight, Paul put his plan into action. Officer Mooney was sitting around the corner in his car in civilian clothes waiting for the go ahead. As soon as he got it, he drove to the house and got out. He walked over to the front door as if this wasn't his first time being there, but was stopped by the guy standing guard.

"Hey, I haven't seen you around here before, what's your name." Officer Mooney gave his real name so he wouldn't have to get used to another name. Right after giving his name, he gave the secret pass code. The guard at the door was still a little suspicious, which Paul and the other officers across the street saw and started to worry. The guard kept looking Nick up and down, but after a few minutes, he nodded.

Paul breathed in a sigh of relief when his guy walked in. He turned to the other officers and spoke. "Step one was successful, now we are in. All we do now is wait for Officer Mooney's signal and we get our butts in there as fast as we can, understand?" All the officers in the house said yes at once.

Back at the Lopez house, Josh was sitting with his boyfriend and brothers watching television. He kept looking over to Brandon, wondering if he was going to tell him more about his girlfriend tonight. After an hour of watching their favorite TV series, Josh figured that Brandon decided against telling him anything more, at least for tonight.

As he settled in and started to get into the series on television, Barbara walked over to him and whispered that he had a phone call. He got up wondering who would be calling him, and then he thought his father. However that thought went out the door when he got out into the hallway and his mother told him that it wasn't his father, but wouldn't tell him who was on the phone.

He walked into the study and picked up the receiver sitting on the end table. "Hello, this Josh, how may I help you?"

"You sound so serious and professional when you answer the phone." Ivan's voice came over the line. "I am sorry for calling you so late, but I have some things I need to go over with you before tomorrow, is that okay?" Josh answered yes. "Good, I will try to be fast so you can get back to what you were doing.

As you know, we are scheduling your concert dates for Spring Break. Dallas hasn't changed as far as you're going to kick off your tour. What has been in question is where you're going to go next. The powers-that-be want to schedule you to perform on the Grand Ole Opry, but they're not willing to take you right now since you're not an established singer in the Country genre."

"I understand that, and to tell you the truth I really wouldn't want to perform on that stage right now since I haven't earned the right to be there. So if the next words coming out of your mouth are planning to call up George Strait or someone else high up there like him, forget it. Don't do that because it isn't right and I know you know that."

"Yes I do and I had no intentions on calling him up or anyone else for that matter. The label executives wanted me to do that, but I said no. They didn't like the answer, but I don't work for them, I work for you and I knew what your answer was going to be. So I moved on and got you another place to perform in Nashville."

Josh couldn't think of any other place that he could perform in a city like Nashville. He thought and thought, but nothing came to his mind. Then he realized that he wouldn't be able to figure that out since he's never been to Nashville. The only real thing he knows about the state is that's where Country Music is, Elvis Presley's house is at and of course the Grand Ole Opry. Other than that, he doesn't know anything else.

"After going back and forth with the executives and not gaining any ground with them, I called up a friend of mine, Dolly Parton." Hearing Dolly's name put a smile on Josh's face. "I put the executives on hold and spoke to Dolly about you going down there and performing at her theme park, Dollywood, and she jumped at the idea.

Dollywood is about two hundred miles from Nashville, but it is perfect for you to give a show. You will sell more tickets, and more kids your age will attend than they would if you were to perform at the Grand Ole Opry. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against the Opry, but right now you need to make your fan base happy by getting out to them and giving them a show."

"I agree one hundred percent on that Ivan. Right now I need to get out there and thank those that made my record go gold overnight. Performing at a theme park is exactly what the doctor ordered. After the show or before the show or both..." Josh started to laugh. "My family, friends and I can go out there and have fun."

"Exactly what I was thinking!" Ivan looked at his list of things to go over with Josh. He covered the remaining shows. Once they agreed on those, they moved on to interviews that he will be giving as he goes across the country; Josh had no problems with them either. When he finished up with that, he had one more thing he wanted to tell Josh, but decided against it.

"Okay I am glad that you are in agreement with everything I have set up for you. I will inform your band about the tour." Ivan stopped in mid thought and started to scratch his head. "Have you figured out a name for your band yet?" Just as Josh was about to answer, Ivan interrupted him. "Also what do you think about the band I got you?"

"As far as the name, I haven't figured it out yet. Give me a couple of days, and I'll have a name for the band. Now as far as the band is concerned, I really don't know. I have only performed with them once. So I can't really say if I like them or not. Give me the tour to figure that out, okay?"

"Out of respect to the guys, you need to figure that out a lot sooner." Ivan thought on how Josh could play more with his band before the tour, and a light bulb went on inside his head. "Why don't I send them down over the next couple of weeks so you can start putting down the new tracks you keep telling me that you have. That will give you a chance to get to know them and see if you guys work well together."

Josh loved the idea and made a schedule with Ivan. With that, Ivan had gone over everything he had on his list. He thanked Josh and wished him a goodnight before hanging up. Josh didn't leave as soon as the call was done. He sat there and let his head soak up all the information he was just given.

Back over with Detective Alvarez, they were sitting there waiting for the go word from Nick. Paul hated not knowing exactly what was happening as it was going on. He heard the talking in the house, but he couldn't see who Nick was talking to.

By the sounds of it, he was going from room to room, and spending equal time in each. He didn't say a word unless he was approached by someone that started the conversation up with him. Other than that, he just kept to himself and looked around.

One of the reasons he didn't say much is because he hadn't seen much yet. All he has seen are older guys just standing around talking to each other drinking a beer or soft drink. It started to look like all that was going on was guys getting together and just blowing off steam like you would if you went to a bar after work.

Then that all changed when Nick reached the far room, the master bedroom. He walked in and couldn't believe his eyes. It was wall to wall VHS' of porn movies and toys. It didn't bother Nick, until he started looking at the covers of the porn tapes. The pictures were of kids that couldn't be any older than thirteen or fourteen. He was sick to his stomach and had to get out of the room.

As he walked back out to the hallway, he saw several guys walking through a door he passed when he was going in and out of the rooms. He thought the door led to the laundry room, but now he is rethinking that. Seeing the amount of guys going in and out of there, there was no way it was a laundry room.

Slowly he made his way to the door and went through. He found himself on the top of a long steep staircase that went down to a poorly lit room. Not wanting to grab any unnecessary attention, he started going down the staircase as if he knew where he was going. A couple of guys passed him as he made his way down, but they didn't even notice him, which he liked.

When he got to the bottom of the stairs, he didn't see anything out of the ordinary. Just like upstairs, they guys were standing around a large room talking. When he went further in, he got a shock of his life. Up and down the walls were young girls and boys that barely had anything on. The boys had tight speedos on, and the girls had a two piece swim trunks on. They couldn't move because they were bound.

Making sure he wasn't seeing things, he walked over to the young kids. The closer he got, the more he was able to make them out. Just like the videos upstairs, these kids couldn't be any older than thirteen or fourteen. They also look like they aren't from the US. All of them looked Hispanic. He got his confirmation that the kids were from Mexico when he spoke to them and they answered back in Spanish.

He saw enough. Trying to get out of the room fast, but at the same time not giving himself away, Nick walked to the door as quickly as he could. As he went up the stairs, he fell a couple of times, but none of the guys downstairs looked his direction.

Just as he walked into the hallway, he ran right into the guy that was standing guard at the front door when he first arrived. They both fell backwards, but were able to catch themselves before falling on their butts. As the guard got his balance he straightened himself up and looked at Nick with daggers in his eyes.

The alarm clock went off, bringing Josh and Cesar out of their deep sleep. Josh reached over and hit the snooze button, turned over onto his back and lay there for a few minutes. He then opened his eyes and stared at the ceiling of their room. He couldn't believe it was already time to get up and go to school. It felt to him like he had just laid down and closed his eyes.

Pushing himself to get up, Josh got out of the covers and started to stretch. Just as he finished stretching, the alarm clock went off again, making Cesar angry. He yelled out for Josh to turn the damn thing off, which surprised Josh. Normally he is the one that has a problem getting up, but this morning it is Cesar.

Josh felt bad about that since he kept Cesar up till almost one in the morning talking about his talk with Ivan. He was so excited about the tour, he couldn't get to sleep. In return, he kept his boyfriend up, who dozed off several times as they were talking and he woke him up each time.

Feeling like crap, Josh leaned over and kissed Cesar on the forehead, but didn't stop there. He started kissing his way down from his boyfriend's forehead, to his eyes, kissing them each several time, before making his way to Cesar nose. There is nibbled a little, making Cesar laugh. Getting the response he wanted, Josh stopped and made his way to where he was going, Cesar's lips.

The moment their lips touched, they went into their own world, a world were only they exist and no one else. Cesar let Josh's tongue in first, with Josh exploring every inch of Cesar's mouth as if it was the first time his tongue was in there. Once he was done, he let Cesar in, and he did the same thing.

Together they rolled around the bed in each other arms, neither letting the other go. After tossing all the blankets and sheets onto the floor, they broke away from each other. They lay there on the bed looking at the mess that they created, laughing. Then they heard a knock on the door, and at first they thought it was Brandon, but it wasn't. Barbara's voice came through telling them that they needed to stop what they were doing and get ready for school.

Looking over at the clock, Josh jumped out of bed and ran to the bathroom. He quickly stripped his underwear off and turned on the water to the shower. Cesar ran into the bathroom just as Josh got into the shower. He quickly took off his underwear and joined Josh in the shower. Both of their dicks were hard as a rock, sticking straight up into the air. They wanted to help each other out, but were already running late.

Putting their lust for each other on hold, they showered, dried and got dressed in fifteen minutes. Once they were ready to go, they joined their brothers down at the breakfast table. As they sat down, Isabella was bringing out their plates of food. She put them in front of the boys and went back into the kitchen.

The conversation somehow made its way back to what Carlos did the day before. The only difference this time than last night was that Josh wasn't the only one saying out loud what Carlos did was a mistake. Since they last talked about it, Daniel Jr. and Brandon thought long and hard. Both coming to the same conclusion. It won't go well for Jacob.

Angry with his brothers, Carlos shot back at them that he knows what he is doing. No matter how he said it, his brothers couldn't see it and they said so. It took Barbara to step in and end the conversation before it got out of control, which was heading that direction very fast. The conversation was getting so heated that it looked like it was going to go to blows. That's something Barbara didn't want to happen.

After she moved the conversation away from the student election, the table got very quiet. When they finished eating and started heading out the door, Barbara pulled Carlos and Daniel Jr. into their father's study.

"Boys, I know you don't agree with how things happened yesterday at school, but you must remember one thing, you are brothers. Nothing, I mean nothing should ever come between you. More so a small thing like a high school student body election. That is not worth losing your brother over or not talking to each other for days.

So make me a promise here and now that you guys won't fight any more about this subject." Daniel and Carlos stood there in the middle of the study staring at each other not saying a word. "Come on, make me that promise. If you guys are seen fighting about something so small and stupid, your younger brothers might do the same thing. So please do this not only to insure your relationship isn't damaged, but for your brothers' sakes."

Almost at the same time the boys apologized to each other and then hugged. Seeing that they really meant it, Barbara let it go. They walked out of the study and rejoined the others. Josh, Cesar and Brandon looked at their two older brothers and wondered if they got into trouble, but when they saw them smiling, they knew the answer.

Together they walked out to the SUV and headed off to school. Not once did they go back to the subject of the school elections. However, that's all that Carlos could think about. He started doubting himself on what he could deliver. If his friends somehow got talked into supporting the remaining jock, his brother's predictions will come true. If that happens, everyone will lose because nothing will get done, like always, when one of their own wins the student council presidency.

When they arrived at school they did what they always have done, split up and went with their friends. Josh, Cesar and Brandon were walking together to the breakfast line, but somewhere along the line they lost Brandon. Josh looked for his little brother, but he was nowhere to be seen. He snuck away so quietly, neither he nor Cesar realized he was gone until they decided to ask him to tell them more about his girlfriend.

Knowing his brother was okay, Josh turned his attention back to Cesar. They went back to the news Josh got the night before from his manager. Since Cesar was dozing off through most of the conversation, Josh had to go over a lot of the things he had already told him. By the time they got through the line and were heading to the table to meet up with the others, Josh had covered everything for the second time.

He decided to drop the subject because he didn't want to go over the same thing for the third time in less than twenty four hours. They sat down trying to get into the conversation that was going on at the table. When Josh figured out what was being discussed, he wasn't happy and didn't hide his anger.

The thing that bothered him the most about the conversation was that his two closest friends turned down a favor. A favor he was able to get from his friend for them. Now if he ever goes back to Jacob and asks for another favor like the one he asked for Eric and Bernice, Jacob might not help out since they backed out of the offer.

"Hold on, just hold on for a freaking minute." Josh interrupted Eric. "You want us to believe the reason you guys didn't take the jobs that Jacob was offering you because they were a favor, not you guys getting them on your own? That's nothing but bullshit and let me tell you why. You got jobs not on your own, but because of a person putting in a word for you guys. Pretty much the same damn thing Jacob was doing. You guys are nothing but hypocrites and you know it."

Everyone at the table was stunned by the words Josh was using and the way he was talking. They understood why he was so angry, yet it wasn't his place to decide what job Eric and Bernice were going to take. They are the ones that need to be happy with their choice and they can see that they are.

"I am sorry that you feel that way about what we did Josh, but Bernice and I..."

"Save your damn breath! I don't want to hear it. Everything that's coming out of your mouth right now is bullshit." Eric couldn't believe that his friend was talking to him the way he was. "Did you guys even think about what you were doing, or did you just decided at the last minute to screw me?" Eric and Bernice looked at each other, unable to form an answer to the questions that Josh was throwing out at them.

"If you didn't want the jobs, you should have spoken up, instead of taking the chicken way out. Now I can never go to Jacob and ask him for a favor like I asked for you guys. He will never trust my word when I recommend anyone to him."

Now the guys at the table were seeing where Josh was coming from. Not only did Eric and Bernice hurt themselves in the eyes of Jacob, but they hurt Josh at the same time. At the same time they all knew that Eric and Bernice didn't mean for it to come out the way it did. They just wanted to get their jobs on their own. However, by letting their pride get the best of them, they have angered Josh.

"We're really sorry Josh. We didn't mean to make you look bad with Jacob, or anyone for that matter. All we wanted was to feel like we accomplished something." Eric could tell he wasn't getting through to Josh. "Others might think we are leeches, trying to get everything we can from our friendship with you, and that is what we are trying to keep from happening. That's the reason why we went with the other job."

Eric's feeling was right that Josh wasn't hearing any of their excuses on why they do what they did. Before Josh could respond, Brandon walked up with a girl on his arm. When he tapped Josh on the shoulder, he turned around with an angry look on his face, scaring Leslie.

Quickly Josh recovered. He got up from his seat and introduced himself. "I'm sorry you came at one of the worst times possible." Josh started to explain as he made room for her and Brandon at the table. "We were in the middle of a heated discussion that has nothing to do with you at all."

Leslie could see that Josh was being sincere. She sat down and looked round the table as Josh introduced everyone. She has never been at a table filled with more guys than girls. Then she remembered what Brandon had told her about the group. The majority of them are gay and are couples, which doesn't bother her at all.

Right away the group made her welcome. They left the conversation they were talking about and went into another that she was able to get involved in. Eric wanted to speak with Josh again before the bell, but he never got a chance. As always they headed out to the stadium and hung out talking about different things that were going on at the school.

Meanwhile in Austin, Al had already gone through several meetings concerning different items on the Governor's agenda. The one he was about to walk into was about the confirmation of Rich. It looked at first it was going to be clear sailing, but over the last couple of days, several state senators had voiced their opposition to the Governor's nominee. Al was asked to sit down with these senators to find out why.

When he walked into the conference room, he was surprised by how many senators were there. He took his seat at the head of the table and waited for the others to take theirs before saying a word. Once the room settled down, Al asked everyone to introduce themselves because he didn't know them all.

"Okay now that we got that out of the way, let me ask why there is a lot more senators in this room than I was told there was going to be."

"All those that you see here aren't going to vote for the Governor's nominee. Just like me, they feel Rich Kewl doesn't have the experience needed to be the next lieutenant governor. He didn't have the experience to be the chief of staff to the Governor of Texas when he was appointed, but we couldn't do a thing about that. Here though, we can and we will do whatever it takes to make sure he doesn't become the next lieutenant governor."

Al looked around the table and up and down the wall of the conference room. He wanted to see how many senators had already made up their minds to vote no. After he counted, he smiled as he wrote down the number, twenty eight. Even he knew with only twenty eight against, they still have a real good chance to get Rich through.

"Ladies and gentlemen let me say that I am happy and grateful that you all came down here. It gives me and the Governor a chance to explain why Mr. Kewl is the right one for the the position of lieutenant governor right now." Al looked around the room making sure that he had everyone's attention.

"First let me say that you are right about Mr. Kewl not having the experience behind him which some lieutenant governors have had when they took office. However, let me remind you guys what that experience got us; nowhere. In fact, it got us more than nowhere, it pushed us back more than it pushed us forward.

Let me use the last lieutenant governor we had as an example. He not only had the experience you are talking about, but you guys liked him. You liked him so much, he did what he wanted, and damn the law. It made all of you look like fools so badly that you cleaned house. Even after doing that cleaning, the voters don't trust you guys."

"Hold on Mr. Serna! Before you go too far, let me clear a couple of things up. As far as liking the former lieutenant governor, we did, but that wasn't why he did what he did. He did what he did because he felt it was the right thing to do. Some in this room still believe that it was, and some don't. He never broke the law and the Governor knows that because he went out and defended him."

"Senator, the Governor defended the former Lieutenant Governor not because he felt there wasn't enough proof to throw him out of the office. The guy broke the law and it was clear as day to anyone that witnessed what he tried to do. He defended the guy because he didn't want this." Al pointed around the table. "He knew you guys would have used this as a chance to throw out your agendas, and not do the job that is before you. Confirm or not confirm the person he is putting before you as his nominee for lieutenant governor."

None of the senators said a word. "We have had experienced men and women in that position and it really didn't make a difference. Things got worse in this state and I really believe the voters are tired of the back and forth. They are sick and tired of nothing getting done by the end of the day because there are too many agendas out there!

Rich Kewl has never held political office in his life, but he has got some of the greatest elected into office, like our current Governor. He has the pulse of the people, which is handier than experience at this time. Bills that aren't right for the people, he will stand up and be one of the first to say the bill shouldn't become law."

The senators were surprised that Al wasn't asking what they wanted for their votes. That is what they came down for. With Governors in the past, they normally fold on other items that aren't too popular as well. However, they are now thinking that they are going to have ask straight out to this guy because the round-about way isn't working.

"Listen Mr. Serna, if you want the Governor's nominee for lieutenant governor to pass, he will have to fold on other items he is trying to push through." Al didn't have to ask which items they are talking about, he knew. "Governor Lopez will have to fold on his gay rights bill, take that off the table and then let us have a lot more input on his crime bill that he is about to put before us."

"I knew the moment you asked for this meeting, it was going to come down to this. There is no way the Governor will even consider taking his gay rights bill off the table. That bill is too important to him that he will go to the ends of the earth to get it passed. As far as the crimes bill, it is done and he won't change one word in it."

"Then it looks like your guy won't get confirmed. Once we defeat him, we will defeat both bills. Then let Governor Lopez try to go to the voters and ask them for their vote on a second term. They will laugh him out of office because he will be known as a Governor unable to deliver on any of his promises. That is the one other thing voters hate more than liars." The senator looked at Al as if he won the whole ball game.

"Go and try to deliver on the threats you just made here and see what happens to you. I can promise you the ones losing here won't be the Governor, but each of you that vote against what the voters want." Al looked in each of the senator's eyes as he spoke. "All of you are being deceived. Before you end your careers casting a nay vote, make sure you are backing the right horse in this race."

The senators started to look very nervous. "We keep having this dance, and at the end of the day, the Governor is the one that comes out on top. So let's stop going round in circles and do what is right. Confirm Mr. Kewl as fast as possible and then take up the two bills and get them passed."

"You can't scare us with threats you and this office have used in the past. The people of this fine state are getting a little worried with all that is going on." Al didn't know where the senator was going with this. "The Governor's plate is so filled, things are about to start falling off. Once they do, the voters are going to see we were right about him."

"Everything the Governor has going on right now, he is able to handle. So don't you worry about him."

The senator looked over at Al with an evil grin. "We are hearing that the governor of New Mexico is about to call out Governor Lopez. He feels that with all the back and forth going on between him and the President of Mexico, nothing is really getting done on getting those two felons back to the states. All he sees is two men trying to grab headlines, and we see the same thing."

Al got up and walked over to the door, returning the evil grin to the senator. "If all you have left is empty threats, this meeting is over." The senators looked at Al, confused because they thought they had him. "Within the hour, Governor Lopez will be making a statement to the press informing the people of this state and the people of New Mexico that the Mexican government is folding. They have just turned over Dominic Alvarez."

The senators were stunned. They all looked at their spokesman with angry looks on their faces. They were assured that by the time they left the meeting, they would have everything they came for. Now they see it was all empty assurances given to them.

"Ladies and gentlemen I am going to say this one last time. Before you cast your nay vote, make sure you are backing the right horse. If you pinned all your hopes on this senator..." Al pointed to their spokesman. "...I hate to say you are choosing the wrong guy here. He won't be able to get you a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Governor, let alone his backing for things you want done."

The senators hated it, but they agreed with Al. "If that is all you guys have for me, I feel it is best that we end this meeting before things are made worse." Al opened the door to the conference. "I won't repeat one thing that happened in here to the Governor, but let me tell you that you will have to deal with me in the future. It is going to be hard for me to ever think of any of you in a positive light again."

The senators wished Al a good day as they passed him walking out of the conference room. Several of them went a step further and told him that they were going to vote for Rich for lieutenant governor. Al thanked those that promised a yes vote, but didn't give them anything in return. He wants them to sweat a little.

Back in El Paso, Josh and the others were getting to know Brandon's new girlfriend. So far they like her. Not only is she a very beautiful girl, she has a down to earth attitude. So often girls that are as beautiful as Leslie, know it and they let everyone else know it around them, but not this girl.

She hangs onto every word Brandon says, which is a lot different than the last girlfriend he had. She wasn't bad, but she tried to change Brandon into someone he wasn't. Josh could see Leslie is not that type of girl. She also has a strong personality, but let's Brandon be his own man. That's something Josh feels that his brother really needs right now.

Just as everyone had asked their questions, the bell rang. Josh, Cesar and the others started to head to the main building when they noticed Patrick, Immanuel and Antonio running towards them. This was the first time Josh noticed they were missing, which is uncommon for Josh. He usually notices when one of the group is not there.

Josh stopped walking to let Patrick and the others catch up, causing everyone behind him to run into each other. Josh looked back and saw angry faces looking at him. He smiled and turned back to Patrick. He, Immanuel and Antonio were out of breath, but Josh could see they had a rougher morning then he had.

"What's going on guys?"

"You're not going to believe this." Patrick spoke kneeling down with his hands on his legs. "We got a call from my mother around two in the morning asking for help. At first I was going to hang up, but Father Gomez asked me to hear her out, so I did. My father got arrested and she needed money to get him bailed out."

Cesar was the first to ask what was on everyone's minds, what was he arrested for. "You aren't going to believe this, he was arrested for..."



{Welcome back one and all to another filled chapter of "Shadow of My Father". I hope your heads aren't spinning on everything that was covered in this chapter. I kept going back and forth form one scene to another, not really completing one of the scenes like a normally do. I wanted to keep you guys going through this chapter, I hope I did.

The story picked right up where it left off at, with Eric and Bernice. Although it didn't go back to the morning, it did pick up with the same story line. Eric and Bernice kept the appointment, but didn't take the job. I don't know about you guys, but I agree with Josh at the end of the chapter on what he said to his friends. But before I go there, let's finish off with what happened at the beginning.

Eric and Bernice were given opportunity that is rare. They were given a job at a good company that many would kill for today. It wasn't that they were going to flip burgers that bothered them. It was that they were getting the job through friendship, who gives a shit. They needed to put their pride aside and accepted the job.

Like Josh said at the end of the chapter, they not only hurt themselves when it comes to Jacob, but in a way they hurt Josh as well. After all Josh was the one that went to Jacob and asked for the favor. Now he won't be able to do that again because he feels Jacob will believe him again. However, we all know Jacob and that will never happen.

Detective Alvarez seems to be one of the good detectives in the city. He tries to help those that he can, and at the same time clean up the streets. I am glad he never gave up on the porn ring and kept at it. Now it looks like he is about to make a bust of his career. Those kinds of bust normally make a career of a detective or officer.

Officer Mooney, don't forget that name because he is going to become a player in the future. He is freshly out of the academy, wanting to learn and do right. He didn't once ask why him or deny the chance on going undercover. This young officer has a making of becoming a good officer, the exact kind of officer the city of El Paso needs right now.

It seems that the Lopez boys are really getting into the student elections. I wonder it is because of their father. Whatever the reason is, the older brothers were about to get into a fist fight over the student elections. It took Barbara to settle things down. More and more I get to know this women, the more I like her. She is the perfect match for Daniel Sr.

What can I say about Al except is a guy you don't want to tangle with. The senator should have made sure he had all the facts before walking in there. Al had his facts and won every point. He did so well that he got several of the senators to change their mind on how they were going to vote as far as Rich's confirmation. That in my book is a big win because now the nay voters have lost of few of their own.

Now the ending of the chapter, the cliffhanger! It is a little one, I know. I also know that many of you might be able to figure it out. However this chapter had a few cliffhangers through it and the major one was the sting. Did Officer Mooney get out unscathed and give the code word to Detective Mooney and the others? Or did the guard catch on and beat up Mooney and warn the others? You guys know me and how I love to keep you guessing going into the next week's chapter.

So much going on in this story and not enough paper to write it all on! I know if I forgot anything in my writer's corner about this chapter, the Editors will take care of it in their corners. There are still a lot of open plots out there that I have not even touched on, and many more new plots are to come. I hope that you all did not forget about any of those plots, and if you did, well then it will be a lot of fun when they come back up again. So hold onto your hats ladies and gentlemen, the ride is just beginning!

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



Thanks Jacob for another great chapter! I agree with Bernice and Eric up to a point, they are at a time in their lives when they feel they would like to be more independent, but there again in the harsh economic times during the 1990's they shouldn't have looked a gift horse in the mouth. By the same token I think Josh went just a little bit over the top when he found out what they had done.


Detective Alvarez is a great police officer destined for big things believe me. I'll bet my bottom dollar on it. He just has to be promotion material being one of the few good apples in the barrel, plus it looks like he's picked a good rookie in officer Mooney.


If Al was for real and in Washington this country would be in great shape. He certainly has the state's senators fooled and the Mexican Government in his pocket.


Regarding the cliffhanger, well I have a pretty good idea what it is but if I told you Jacob would have to kill me.


Jacob didn't mention the great job Josh's manager Ivan is doing. A good manager is the difference between being a success and being great. I'm speaking from experience now. In my younger days in Britain I had a great manager and thanks to him my partner and I earned a lot of money in a short space of time. Of course when my boyfriend died I lost it just as quick, but that's life.


Finally I'd like to mention my vacation which Daddy Rick mentioned on Monday. I have left Australia and moved to the United States of America. Remember the old saying if you can't beat them, join them. I'm sure my lifestyle here in the USA will be a good one.


A big thank you to all those readers who happened to be in the know for some wonderful welcoming e-mails. The only problem now is I don't have an excuse when writing my US stories and some Aussie slang creeps in. I'm trying folks, I'm trying.


Don't forget we love to hear from you so keep the comments and e-mails coming.




"Daddy" Rick's Soapbox:

Trevor, welcome to the USA! I hope you find things here to your liking.

I can understand Josh's reaction to what Eric and Bernice did. I do think he totally overreacted. He obviously doesn't know Jacob well if he's concerned about his credibility being compromised with Jacob over this issue. To Jacob this situation wouldn't be a concern for Jacob past the conversation and he'd not hold others' actions against Josh. In short, Josh is selling Jacob short! I hope someone gets that point across to him.

I'm very interested in finding out everything about Brandon's girlfriend Leslie and to be a fly on the wall as their relationship develops. Brandon is fortunate to have found a young lady to be in his life that likes him just as he is; the whole package, the good, the not so good or otherwise. Unconditional acceptance is a vital part of the foundation for a good and growing relationship. I am hoping all the best for this budding young couple.

Ivan, Josh's manager is doing a great job! Getting the concert appearance at Dollywood was a stroke of brilliance. I agree that it is way too soon for Josh to appear at the Grand Ole Opry. I'm glad that Ivan and Josh recognize that institution of the Grand Ole Opry is for those that have contributed significantly over a period of many years to the Country Music genre. I get a sneaking feeling that this concert appearance is going to be a truly significant one in Josh's early career. I suspect Dolly will see to it that it's a spectacular show.

Anything else I'd care to comment on has already been addressed by Jacob or Trevor, so I'll close out for this chapter.

You will all be reading this chapter on Friday. I hope that each one of you has a wonderful weekend.

Until Next Time,

"Daddy" Rick