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Ed Brown's Garage
Deseos del corazon

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Deseos del corazon
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As General Lee said to General Grant "Like it or not your in the Union!"
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deseosdelcorazonbookcover.jpg

Deseos del Corazon

by Suzanne Magoon

Cover design by Miss Dani

 

This story is copyrighted to the author. Do not use, re-print, or copy without prior permission from the author. For entertainment purposes only.

Suzanne had been in the neighborhood doing community work for a local homeless shelter when she came across Ed Browns Garage. Her gas gauge was turning red and, knowing she would never make it back home with little gas she had left, she pulled in the garage and sounded her horn as requested at the sign near the entrance of the garage.

"Hello, I am in need of some gas."

Ed stood beside her car, wiped his hands and yelled for Chico.

"Chico, could you fill the tank for this young lady?"

Chico yelled from the back room. "Yeah hold on Miss I'll be right there. Sorry miss", Chico said, as he hurried over. "I didn't mean to make you wait." Suzanne looked up as he spoke to her. She saw his dear sweet eyes.

"Thank you, but I'm in no hurry. Go ahead and take your time." Chico mesmerized her with his black hair and brown eyes and what a cute smile. "M'm, m'm", she said quietly. "He's just too cute to be a mechanic."

Chico leaned over to wipe her windshield. "Pardon me Miss, did you say something?"

Chico caught her off guard. "You're a very good mechanic."

"Why thank you, miss," Chico said with a smile.

"Whew, that was close" Suzanne thought.

"My name is Chico Rodriguez. I'm Ed Brown's assistant. Nice to meet you."

Suzanne reached over and shook Chico's hand. "Nice to meet you too Chico, my name is Suzanne."

"Are you in town for business or vacation?" Chico asked as he checked under the hood.

"I'm here for business then I'll be taking a few days off to do some sight seeing around L.A."

"Really, huh? I'd be more than happy to show you around the area if you like?" Chico eagerly awaited her answer.

"That will be terrific Chico. I don't want you to get in trouble with your boss over the there."

Chico looked over by Ed. "Ed? Ed won't mind. I'm sure he'll be able to handle it. If it gets a little crazy, I'll have my friend Mando help him out."

Ed walked over to Chico. " Mando?" Ed yelled.

"Yeah Ed , you remember Mando , don't you?"

Ed shook his finger at Chico, "You mean that little Puerto Rican that told everyone I was unfair when you went on strike?"

Chico tossed a few rags on the bench. "Yeah Ed."

Ed raised his head in disbelief . "Just when you get rid of one another one shows up!"

"So Ed, is it ok that I can have a few days off?''

" Yeah, yeah Chico take a few days off. Take the whole week off I don't care."

Chico followed Ed to the office. "Listen Ed If you don't want me to just say so."

Ed thinks about it as he goes back to the car and shuts the hood. "Go ahead Chico, you and Suzanne have a great time!"

"Thanks Ed your the greatest" Chico said as he sat in the drivers seat.

"Thank you Mr. Brown, you're a very kind man." Suzanne said as Chico backed the car out of the garage.

Suzanne was thinking how cute Chico looked in his ratty jeans and tee shirt. As we drove through parts of L.A. and East L.A., Chico talked about what his plans were for the future. Suzanne did the same. "How about we stop here and pick up some Mexican food. I'd love to cook dinner for you, Suzanne."

"Ah Chico, that would be terrific but please let me help you with the cooking. I insist."

"No, no Suzanne, let me prepare it for you in honor of welcoming you here in East LA."

By the time we came back the lights were out. Ed had closed for the evening. "Ed and a good friend of ours, Louie, went out for the evening. So we'll pretty much be alone tonight." Chico said with a wink.

Chico, still being the gentleman, started preparing the dinner.

"Whose van is that Chico?"

Chico went to the van and opened the back doors. "It's my van, this is where I sleep. Here, let me help you in."

"Hey this nice," Suzanne said. "My compliments to the decorator."

Chico bowed to her. "Why, thank you, my dear".

Chico and Suzanne talked about life and relationships. She looked deep in Chico's eyes. "Chico I , I think I'm attracted to you. I mean, I think I'm falling in love with you."

Chico was quiet for a few minutes. He brushed his head with his hand.

"Oh Chico, I'm sorry I startled you, I shouldn't said anything about you so soon."

Chico turned to her and held her hand. "No Suzanne, you didn't startle me. I was afraid to mention it to you too, thinking it was to soon also."

Suzanne reached over to hug Chico. " Oh Chico, I am so relieved to know we have the same feelings for each other." Chico and Suzanne embraced, hugging each other for quite a while.

Chico spoke to her in Puerto Rican, "Mera mami, linda, oyeee!" Chico took hold of her hand and led her to the other side of him. "I'm so glad we met" Chico whispered in her ear. From there on things inside the van got a little heated up. A while later Suzanne heard something rumbling.

"Oh no the garage door!" she said very quietly. Chico on the other hand was to busy to know that Ed and Louie had just come back.

Suddenly Louie shouted, smiling from ear to ear, "Hey, look Ed, there must be an earthquake happening in Chico's van, 'cause I never seen it rock like that before."

Ed freaked. "What earth quake!" Ed frantically climbed the stairs and opens the roof flap. "What are you doing in my van!"

Chico got up , sticking his head out of the roof. "It's my van now remember, I bought it off of you."

Ed scratched his head. "Oh yeah, Still what are you doing in there any way? Get outta my garage!"

Chico eagerly showed him a deck of cards. "We are playing cards Ed, see?"

"Looks like strip poker to me " Louie said with a grin.

Suzanne got out of the van and spoke to Ed. "He's been quite a gentleman to me this evening, Ed. Here, let's go into the office and let me pour you a drink." She gave Ed a shot of whiskey that was hidden in a mock set of books. "Please Ed, Chico has been very good to me since we've met. I know he would never harm me." After a couple more shots Ed seemed to settle down a bit. "Please don't fire Chico, he's a great person."

"Ok, Ok, I won't fire Chico " Ed said. "I want to apologize for scaring you in the van. I hadn't planned on catching you two in the act," Ed said blushing. "Please have a full tank of gas on the house."

Chico whacked Ed on the arm, "Ed, you owe her more than a free fill up." Chico had mentioned to her how Ed had been a father figure to him since he's worked with Ed. Suzanne gave Ed a hug and a kiss on the cheek. Ed began to blush.

"I'm going to miss you, Suzanne" Ed said sadly. Suzanne gave Chico her forwarding address and phone number. She hugged Chico and kissed him for a long time.

"Chico, I will get in touch with you as soon as I get back in town. Then I will be with you and never leave you." As Suzanne put the car in reverse and pulled out of the driveway, she said to him, "Adios, Mi Amante Boruica."

A cool breeze came through the skies. Suzanne arrived at the ramp heading to East Los Angeles. The days seemed long and empty without Chico.

"I miss him dearly, " she said as she flipped through the radio dial. Love songs playing on the radio made her miss him more then ever. "I wonder if he's working today?" She pulled over to the nearest payphone. "I just have to hear his voice again." It had been a long couple of months since she and Chico saw each other. Phones were wonderful but too expensive. Grabbing some change she came across a note Chico left her the day they last saw each other.

"I will love you forever, Chico!'

"Ah, I will be with you soon mi amante boricua" she whispered. She waited as the phone continued to ring. "God, I hope everything is ok. Something must be wrong." She pretty much floored it from there on, holding her breath she would not get pulled over by the cops.

As Suzanne got closer to town, it started to downpour. It got dark real fast as night approached. She pulled in by Ed's garage door. Ed was closed for the evening. She ran to the door, pounding hoping someone would hear her through the heavy rain.

"Suzanne," Mando shouted. "Come in, come in. Here dry off in the rest room."

"Where's Chico?" she wondered. "Mando, I haven't been the same since I left. Is Chico... ok?"

"Suzanne, please sit down." Mando had her sit in Ed's office.

"What's wrong? Mando? Please tell me." She had a bad feeling come upon her.

Mando knelt beside her. "Chico hasn't been the same since you left. He became very sad and depressed. He knew someday sooner or later you two would see each other." Mando tried desperately to calm her down. "Chico left to be with his father in Puerto Rico. His father wanted him to work in his business."

She looked away. "So he isn't coming back?" She wept.

"Yes, Chico will be here at the end of the month!" Mando said with a smile.

"That will be in a few days!" we both said together.

"Suzanne, Chico was struggling so much he had been visiting Reverend Bemis regarding his sadness for losing you, and for him to at least keep his faith together."

She became more upset. "It's all my fault. I shouldn't have left." Mando put his hand on hers.

"Believe me Suzanne, it's not your fault. Chico had been going through some rough times with his father. Chico felt he had to be there with him." Mando reached over and hugged and comforted her thinking " Hmm, what would make Chico want to leave because of Suzy? Just having her in my arms would please me."

Mando finally calmed her down. Suddenly Ed came from a pick up. Ed ran into the office when he heard her crying.

"Suzanne " Ed happily said. Suzanne got up and hugged Ed.

"Ed, I've missed everyone."

Ed took off his hat. "I'm so happy to see you again." The phone started to ring. "Excuse me, Suzanne. Ed's Garage."

Chico was on the line. "Hey Ed!"

"Chico?!" Suzanne looked on. Ed talked to Chico for a few minutes. "Hey Chico, Suzy's here. She's missing you and thought something bad had happen to you. Here, Suzanne. Chico would like to talk to you." Ed handed the phone to Suzanne and left the office.

"Chico," Suzanne cried with excitement.

"Suzanne, I have spoken to my father so much about you. He knows you are all I think about. Suz, I have something I wish to ask you, I can't wait to I get home."

"Chico, go on" Suzanne said.

"Suzanne, my father wishes to meet you. Suzanne, will you marry me?" Chico said with a hint of fear.

"Yes, oh yes Chico! I would be more then happy too."

"Suz, my father has given us his blessing and has accepted the fact that I enjoy working with Ed more than tending to his business."

"I can't wait till I arrive at the airport. I have something for you from my father."

"Oh Chico, everyone has been so kind to me. Mando has been quite the gentlemen lately." Suzanne seemed much happier after hearing Chico's voice.

"Really?" Chico said. "Is he still here?"

"Yes, hold on. I'll go get him."

Mando picked up the phone. "Hey Chico!" Mando sound excited.

"Hey Mando thanks for taking care of Suzy for me. She sounded like a wreck."

"Man, you have no idea". Mando said. "Hey, how about I make it up to you? Name it."

"Hey Chico bring me back a case of Madalia and we'll call it even."

"You got it !" said Chico.

The day arrived. Chico's flight was scheduled at 11:00am. Ed, Louie, Mando and Suzanne waited patiently for his plane to land.

"Look!" they all shouted as his plane pulled in the gate. Suddenly a flood of people started coming through the door. "Where's Chico? Has anyone seen Chico yet?" they all said one after the other.

"I see him!" Suzanne shouted. Suzanne ran to greet him.

They embraced one another. "I love you Suzanne!" Chico said with a smile.

Ed, Louie, and Mando hugged Chico and welcomed him back. "It's great to have you back." Ed said cheerfully.

"Yeah Chico, It hasn't been the same with out you! Welcome back!" Louie said as he tugged on Chico's shoulder.

"Hey Amigo! Cervaesa, Cervaesa!" Mando cheered with excitement.

"Yeah Mando. I haven't forgotten. It's in my suit case" Chico whispered. They were happy Chico was back for good.

"Mando," Chico said quietly, "Thank you so much for your understanding of my leaving and taking care of Suzy for me. I hope she wasn't too much trouble when she realized I left."

Mando held his shoulder and said. "She's a very sweet girl. Chico, if it came to the point of you never returning back. I'm sure I would have had her by now. I'd have to admit Chico, her sadness had an effect on me." Chico looked at Mando with a smile and concern. "We both missed you Chico, you've been like a brother to me. Suz became very vulnerable and almost had me. Suzanne realized how much she loved you, Chico, to go that far. You've got to understand Chico, your absence was hard on everyone."

Chico looked very sorry and almost wanted to cry. "Mando, I am so sorry I put everyone in so much hell" said Chico.

"Hey Chico, It's over, we are very happy you returned. We love you. Now where's my cervaesa! Man I could use a cold one."

"Ok, ok when we get home and unpack we'll get together and drink, just us guys," Chico said.

Everyone got Chico's bags unpacked. Chico said good night to Ed and Louie. " Good night, Chico," Suzanne said. "Good night, my sweet heart," Chico said as he kissed her.

Later that night Chico and Mando caught up on what had happened with them while they were apart. "I'm so sorry I've caused so much pain with everyone here."

"Chico, it was a rough time since you've been gone. Suzanne was insisting it was her fault things happened the way they did. She looked sad and pitiful," Mando said sadly. "I mean it was hard not to make a move on her," Mando said fearfully. "I hugged her and comforted her when she was crying all the time. Chico I came very close to seducing her." Mando hid his face thinking Chico was going to slug him. " Chico," Mando said

"I am over her now."

"Oh God, what have I done." Chico cried. His tears swelling in his eyes. "Mando, just for the record I'm not in any means disappointed in you," Chico said as he cried. "She had every right to except your invitation of sexual desire. I was a fool for leaving her and everyone who loved me."

The morning came, and Chico rose from a restless night. He had tossed and turned thinking about Suzanne and everyone who loved him. "I've got to call Reverend Bemis and speak to him," he said quietly. Chico went to the office and dialed Reverend Bemis." Reverend Bemis, this Chico Rodriguez."

"Chico, my son, God has answered my prayers!" Reverend Bemis said with great joy.

Chico spoke quietly," Reverend Bemis, I have had a wonderful time since I returned. Yet I feel a sense of deep sadness." Chico tried to hide his feelings.

"Chico, my son, please ask God for forgiveness. HE will grant you peace. He will lift up your burden." Chico wiped the tears from his eyes. "Yes, I will ask God forgiveness. Then I will see Ed, Louie, Mando, and Suzanne. I will ask for their forgiveness also."

Chico called everyone and asked them to meet at the garage around 5:00pm. Everyone showed up as Chico requested. "Everyone please sit down." Chico paced the floor. "Please, I have something I must say. It has given me heartache regarding my sudden absence. I am so sorry I caused everyone so much pain." Chico was shaking as tears came down his face.

Suzanne came to hug him. "God has reasons for his actions," Suzanne whispered in his ear. "He will never leave us."

As the weeks came and went, everyone became closer and spent more time with each other. Ed helped Chico turn the tire room into an apartment for Chico and Suzanne. Ed respected their privacy and was happy that they were still near enough to be together while he and Chico worked together.

Everything seemed to be going well. Ed's business was thriving. Chico and Suzanne were happier then ever. Chico's best bud Mando offered to help him out more at the garage. Ed couldn't have been happier.

"Hey Chico", Mando whispered to him. "What's up with Ed? He's normally not this happy when there's so many Beaners around?"

Chico got hold of his arm and took him aside. "Ever since I came back he's a whole new person."

"Really," said Mando. "Not that gringo!"

"Really Mando, it's true!" Chico said seriously. "Hey listen Mando can you cover for me. I have to go across town and pick up Suzy at the Hope House."

"Hey Chico, I know where that is. How about if I pick her up for you? I have to go to that side of town anyway."

"Well", said Chico, "I do have to finish up here. I had promised her I'd pick her up before dark."

Mando put his arm around Chico " I don't have a problem with it Chico. I'd be more than happy to spare you some time." Chico then gave Mando directions to the Hope House, a local homeless shelter where Suzanne worked.

Suzanne had just finished her rounds when she heard what she thought sounded like Mando's low rider. Suzanne looked out her window. "Hey, sure enough," she thought. "Chico and Mando got here just in time!"

Mando knocked on Suzanne's door. "Hey Suzy, ready to go?" Mando said with a big smile.

"Yes Mando, very much so. Where's Chico? He had planned on picking me up."

Mando opened the passenger to his car. "Chico got behind on his schedule. I offered to pick you up that way he would be able to finish tonight."

"Well Mando that was really sweet of you," I said as I kissed him on the cheek.

"Ah Suz, anything to help out a good friend."

"Hey Mando you souped up your low rider. I love it!"

Mando started the car and pulled out. "It sure is a nice evening tonight." Mando said with a big grin.

Yes, it sure is," Suzanne said as she rolled her window down. The cool night air felt good on her face as Mando cruised towards East Los Angeles.

Mando took a good look at Suzanne as she leaned against the half open window. Mando scoped every inch of her seductively. "Suzy, remember when you were so upset and I offered my shoulder to cry on?"

Suzanne leaned over closer to Mando. "Yes Mando, I remember very well."

"Suz, every time you came to me for comfort, I really enjoyed having you in my arms. I mean it really felt good."

Suzanne turned to Mando and put her hand on his. "Mando, you been very supportive during my sadness when Chico left. Thank you."

Mando got irritated. "Suz, I don't think you understand. I am having strong feelings for you. I know you love Chico and he loves you dearly. Damn it!" Mando said as he slammed his hand against the steering wheel. "Suz, I am falling in love with you."

Suzanne looked shocked. "Mando, I admit when I was sad and worried about Chico, I really enjoyed your company."

Mando stormed out of the car and started to pace back an forth. "Suzy, please don't tell Chico I told you about how I feel about you." He leaned over to Suzanne and kissed her passionately. Suzanne was so confused she started to cry. "You know Suz, I did tell Chico that if he had never came back I would have already had you." Mando was hysterical.

"Oh my God. Mando, I almost felt the same way. Yet I had some hope that Chico would return."

Mando jogged over to Suzanne's side of the car. "Damn it, Suzanne, there's more to your life than Chico and I want to be a part of it." Mando hopped back on the car and kissed Suzanne passionately again, this time fondling her. He couldn't get enough of her.

"I was afraid of this," Suzanne cried.

Mando leaned over to her and hugged her. "Suzy, I'm so sorry."

Suzanne finally settled down. "Mando, I think we better get going," Suzanne said as she wiped the tears from her eyes. "Chico is probably worried sick about me now. Seeing as we are running late."

Mando started his car and took off back to the garage.

Mando and Suzanne had finally arrived at Ed's garage. It was past midnight. The light was still on. "Oh please get me through this," Suzanne said to herself as Mando into the garage.

"Hey, is everything ok?" Chico asked. Suzanne just couldn't face what was going to happen. "Suzanne," Chico hugged her, "you look tired." Chico said with concern.

"You don't know the half of it," Suzanne said sadly. "Chico, we need to talk."

Chico led Suzanne into the van. They sat in the passenger seat. "Chico, there's something I think you should know."

Chico sat silently, his eyes fixed on Suzanne. "Yes, Suzanne? What is it?"

Suzanne leaned over closer to him. "Chico when you left, I became very vulnerable. Mando was there for my comfort when you were gone. I had no where else to turn."

"I know, Suzy. Mando told me the night I returned back for Puerto Rico."

Suzanne had a sense of fear come upon her. " Chico, did he tell you that we almost had..."

"Yes, Suzanne, he told me everything." Chico opened the van door and let himself and Suzy out as Mando was entering the storeroom.

"Chico there's something you need to know why I was late tonight."

Chico was cleaning some tools. "I was wondering what had happen to you guys. Why, what's wrong?"

Suzanne started to cry. "Mando took a different way home and pulled over by the Hills. He stopped the car and got emotional with me."

Chico stopped what he was doing and looked at her. "Go on," Chico said.

Suzanne went on about how Mando was feeling about her when Chico went to Puerto Rico, and how emotional she got. Chico looked at her with concern. "Chico, he told me he loved me and when I came to him for comfort during your absence, he enjoyed it."

Chico sat down. "Are you sure he wasn't being polite about it?" Chico tried to find any excuse not to blame Mando of anything.

"Chico, he kissed me and touched me at the Hills on the way home! He's very much in love with me," cried Suzanne.

Chico looked confused. "Please Suzanne stay here, I want to go find Mando and straighten this whole thing out!"

Chico went on a manhunt for Mando after finding out he had kissed and touched Suzanne. Chico cornered Louie. "Louie, Louie!" he shouted, "Have you seen Mando? I need to find him."

Louie put the can down he was dumping.

"Mando has been after Suzanne. I need to find him," Chico said while pacing back forth.

Chico found Ed. "Ed, have you seen Mando?"

"He's on a run. He should be back short back shortly."

Chico sat at the workbench emotionally drained from what had been happening to him. "Ed, I'm going to the van to think for a while. Please, if Mando comes back, I would like to talk to him".

Ed turned to him and put his hand on Chico's shoulder. "I'll let him know Chico. You go rest for a bit".

Silently, the door slowly crept open. Mando silently eased his way in the garage. Mando kept walking backward, trying not to wake anyone up. When Mando turned around there was Chico standing there, arms folded. Waiting for him with fire in his eyes.

"Oh my god!"

Chico got right up in his face. "You pendajo!" shouted Chico.

"What are you talking about, Chico?" Mando said with fear.

"You know what you did to Suzy. You kissed her! You, you touched her and told her you loved her!"

"Chico, let me explain" pleaded Mando. " I'm sorry I took advantage of her during her sadness. I thought, we all thought you were not coming back!" Mando said. "I felt I had to comfort her when you split to Puerto Rico!"

Chico kept gripping his belt to keep him from slugging Mando. "Mando, you know I still love her. She is all I think about."

Suzanne arrived at the garage, running to hug Chico. Mando looked on.

"Chico, I missed you please hold me," Suzanne said. Chico was hugging her and whispered "I love you" in her ear. Mando came in between and pulled them apart.

"What are you doing Mando?" said Chico.

"Please Suzanne, I must be with you. You are all I think about," Mando pleaded with her. Chico looked at him like he'd seen a ghost. He couldn't believe what he was hearing.

"What? Mando, get over it!"

Mando tugged on Suzanne. "I can't, I won't.

"Mando we have known each for so long, I don't want to ruin our friendship." Chico took Mando aside and told him how much Suzanne has been good to him and how he would be lost with out her. Ed stopped Mando and told him how Chico had changed since Chico and Suzanne first met.

"Mando you're a good employee and a decent person," Ed looked very serious at Mando. "Chico has shown more respect to all since their relationship first blossomed, Mando. Please, I hate to see what would happen to Chico if he lost her."

Mando waved his finger at Ed. "Listen Ed, I know if I try harder she will come to me instead of Chico. When she was hurting, I enjoyed having her in my arms. She held me for quite a while. I know she has feelings for me, but won't admit it. Suzanne!" Mando yelled.

"Leave her out of this, Mando" Chico screamed. Suzanne hung out by the garage door.

"Suzanne, who do you love more ME or Chico?"

Suzanne went between them. "Listen, you two are fighting because of me. You two have been friends for a very long time. Please, please." she pleaded. "Don't ruin your friendship because of me." Suzanne went to Ed. "Ed, I have been thinking, I think I should just get out of here and never return. I have caused so much strain on everyone since I've been here."

"Suzanne," Ed replied. "Please don't go we'll miss you. I'll miss you. Please if you want I'll have a heart to heart talk with Mando and Chico. Something is bound to change after that. I really think Mando knows how much you and Chico mean to each other. I just hope nothing tragic happens because of it."

Chico and Mando had an understanding about each of their relationships concerning Suzanne. Chico and Suzanne's love grew stronger as they were together more. Ed was feeling much better now that Chico and Suzanne's relationship was back to normal, or so he thought.

"Amigo, amigo," yelled Mando as he arrived for work early today.

"Good morning Mando," Ed said as he slammed down a shot of whiskey. "Chico , I need you to come and check some paper work," Ed said eagerly.

"Ok, ok Ed. I'll be right there." Chico went into the office and double-checked the papers. "Ed, thanks for being there for me and letting me stay here still after what we all went through lately." Ed sat down on his desk and took hold of Chico's arm.

"You know Chico, I remember when you rode your bike here. A young chubby Chicano. Now you've grown into a responsible young adult." Ed scratched his mustache. "If only I can say that about Mando."

"Why Ed?' asked Chico.

"Well, Chico, I think he's troubled about something. He seems very distant. Chico, are you sure he's over Suzanne?" Chico stopped repairing.

"Yes, Ed. Mando gave me his word."

"Ok, ok Chico. Still I'd keep my eye my on him," Ed said seriously.

"Ed, he told me himself he has changed. If it means that much to you, I'll keep an eye on him". Chico reassured Ed.

The thunderous sound of Mando's low rider entered the garage. " Hey Muchacho!" yells Mando.

Chico walked over to Mando. "Hey, hey, your back early that's great!"

"Thanks Chico I had a good run."

Ed yelled out from his office. "Hey, Chico, someone called about a delivery guy's truck breaking down. He can't make it over here. Can you go across town and pick up those mufflers for me? "

"Ok Ed, I'll leave in a few," Chico said anxiously.

Mando and Ed worked on some inventory till way after closing time. A horn sounded coming in from the driveway. "Hello everyone," Suzanne said happily.

"Hello Suzy" Chico said. "I'm feeling good about us. I love you and will always cherish you forever," he whispered in her ear.

Suzanne leaned by his ear and said "I will always love you Chico. Chico, I've had a rough few days. Do you mind if I turn in early?"

Chico hugged her tightly. "Not at all Suzy. You look tired. Please go rest. I will see you later". Chico kissed Suzanne's forehead and wished her goodnight. Chico tucked her in bed then left for the mufflers.

"Mando", Ed said with a yawn, " I'm going to hit the hay myself."

"Ok, Ed, have a good night." Mando kept himself busy by cleaning up the garage. Later in the evening the phone rang. "Ed Browns Garage" Mando said tiredly.

"Mando , that guy never showed up with the mufflers."

" Damn" said Mando. "The guy just called and said he'd be there in a few hours."

Chico didn't know it but Mando had this all planned so he could finally be alone with Suzanne. "Ah," said Mando with a curious grin. "Knowing Chico, he won't be home for hours. He'll get tired and pull over and nap for a few hours. I think I'll visit Suzy!" Mando quietly opened the door creeping inside so he wouldn't wake her. Looking into the bedroom, he saw Suzanne sleeping soundly. "Ah, this is my chance to really have my Suzanne," Mando whispered. Mando carefully undressed leaving only the hair on his back. He carefully eased his way in bed. "Oh my god!" Mando said quietly. "We are together at last!"

"Suzanne," Mando whispers.

Suzanne, still exhausted, said, "Chico, you're back."

Mando put his finger over her mouth. "Shhh" whispered Mando. He started to kiss her and caress her.

"Chico, I have missed you!" Suzanne barely said.

"Shhh", whispers Mando. He started to seduce her without her knowing it was Mando instead of Chico.

"Oh Chico, Oh Chico!"

Mando was enjoying this. "Yes, I have finally got her," he said in his mind.

Chico finally arrived back from the long drive back. He walked by the bedroom and heard noise coming from there. Suddenly the bedroom door slammed open.

"OH MY GOD !" Chico screamed.

"What? What the ....... Mando! Get off me!" Suzanne yelled. Suzanne pulled away and fell to the ground crying thinking she was with Mando instead of Chico.

"I could hear Suzanne yell my name while you tried to have sex with her. You had her thinking it was me!" Chico was furious.

"Chico, I called your name and he never said it wasn't you. I was exhausted. I had no idea it was Mando."

Chico paced the floor and grabbed Mando. "Mando, your a dead man!" Chico said.

"Shut up, shut up Chico. I was able to screw Suzy without you knowing it ! I am very happy to admit she enjoyed herself!"

Chico looked like he was going to kill Mando. " Get outta here before I kill you!" Chico slugged Mando in the jaw. "You Bendajo!"

Mando grabbed his clothes and took off running. "Suzy, my God are you ok?" Chico hugged her to comfort her.

"I have never been so scared in my life. I had no idea Mando planned this. I had no clue he was after me again, honest."

Chico held her close. "I know Suzy we all thought he would change. Still Suzanne" Chico had her sit down in the van. "I need to know something." Chico looked straight in her eyes. "Do you have feelings for Mando?"

"Chico, I'm..."

" Suzanne, tell me please. Do you?"

" No, Chico, I almost fell in love with him while you were gone. His warmth and comforting as he hugged me made me feel safer at one time."

Chico held her chin. Listen Suzanne, I love you, but I think I'm going to have to do something about Mando."

As the morning approached, Mando drove by the back end of the garage so no one knew he was around.

"Ed, I'll be back in a bit. I'm getting us some breakfast."

"That will be great Chico, thanks. Hurry back."

"I better get going! " Chico bent down to get the morning paper. As he got up he felt something cold against his back. "My money is in my back pocket man."

"I don't want your money!"

Chico turned slowly. "Mando?"

Mando waved the gun in his face. "Why did you have to ruin it for me and Suzanne? She hates me now because you interrupted our love making! Man, Chico that was suppose to be our moment together."

"You're sick, Mando. Suzanne and I are in love! When are you going to realize that?" Mando got up in Chico's face. "There's only one person for her and it's me! I will see about that!"

"Now, how are you going to do that?"

"I'm going to kill you."

"Mando, you can't be serious! Killing me isn't your answer!"

" Shut up! Shut up!" Mando shouted.

Chico tried to calm Mando down. "Hey I knew you were loco but not that loco!"

"Hey, what's all the commotion about?" Suzanne as she headed in Chico's direction.

"Mando, what are you doing? Put that gun down! Let's talk this over."

"NO, I won't. I'm going to kill Chico so you and I can be together."

"Mando, please don't," Suzanne cried. "Please I love Chico!"

Chico went from behind Mando and grabbed him. They both wrestled to get the gun off each other's hands.

" Chico, Oh my god! Look out!"

"Gimme that gun Mando" Chico tried desperately to remove it from him.

"Not on your life Chico!" Mando struggled.

* Smack* Chico slugged Mando. Mando turned over. His gun went off. Chico lay still from the force of the gunshot. Mando rolled off Chico.

"Crap that pendajo is still alive!" Mando said angrily.

Chico turned over looked at Mando then Suzanne. "What the..... Suzanne! Suzanne was lying in a pool of blood. "Suzanne!" Chico cried as he ran to her. "Mando, how could you do this! OH MY GOD!"

"Suzy, please don't die. God, don't let her die!" they both shouted.

Mando leaned over Suzanne. "Oh damn, I never meant it to happen this way."

"You killed her Mando!" Chico cried.

"Wait Chico, she's still breathing!" Mando said. Mando held his head in his hands. "I never meant to hurt her, the gun accidentally went off!"

Soon the sounds of sirens were coming closer and louder. Ed ran out to see what the commotion was all about.

"Oh dear God" Ed said tearfully. The paramedics carried Suzanne into the ambulance. Chico followed them inside. Suzanne drifted in and out of consciousness. Suzanne struggled to talk. "Mi Amante Burouca."

Chico leaned over and kissed her. "Shhhh. you need to keep your strength." Chico grabbed her hand and stroked it slightly. "Suzanne, I love you. We will be together forever! Mando is going to jail for attempted murder."

"Chico, I love you dearly. Please tell Ed I love him too." Suzanne closed her eyes and tilted her head.

Chico cried and kissed her good bye. "Good bye my sweet Suzanne. You will always be in my heart."

Chapter 2

As the ambulance drove Chico and Suzanne away from Ed's garage, Chico kept rubbing Suzanne's forehead and kissed it as they were rushed to the hospital.

"Why, Suzanne? Why did you have to leave me so soon?" Chico whispered as tears streamed down his face.

A paramedic grabbed some equipment and began to perform CPR on Suzanne. Chico leaned back, still hoping for some small miracle. The monitor showed no sign of life.

Chico, confused about the day's events, began to pray silently.

"God, I know I'm asking for miracle. Please find it in your heart to save Suzanne. I know the gun went off by accident. The cops took Mando away thinking it was him. I've known Mando for a long time. I just don't think he really would of wanted to shoot me or Suzanne."

Chico had a horrifying thought come over him.

"For all I know I could of caused that gun to go off."

Chico's mind raced with confusion.

Suddenly Chico heard one of the paramedics call the other one over.

"She has a pulse!" the paramedics announced. "She's becoming conscious, I'm checking her vital signs." The paramedics increased her fluid in her IV.

Chico looked stunned. "What? She 's alive!? Is she going to make it? " Chico with tears in his eyes, leaned over to Suzanne to get a closer look.

Suzanne's face was covered with an oxygen mask, tubes leading to her nose and mouth along with lines of wires strapped on her to check her heart rate.

"Barely, sir," said the attendant. "She'll need to be operated on to remove the bullet lodged in her lower abdomen."

"She 's a fighter, she'll survive." Chico, excited about her possibly coming back to life, smiled as he held Suzanne's hand to kiss it gently.

The ambulance pulled into the hospital emergency entrance. The paramedics hurried Suzanne in the emergency room as doctors and surgeons waited from hearing the report.

Chico began to follow them into the hospital. The hospital was busy with emergency victims. People scurried everywhere. Chico quickly followed the paramedics as they made their way through the emergency room.

"Is this the shooting victim?" the nurse asked as they wheeled Suzanne on by.

"Yes, she has a wound on her lower abdomen," said the paramedic.

"Take her to Emergency Section 3. The operating room is getting prepped for her surgery," the nurse informed them.

Chico continued to follow them, trying not to be in the way. Chico was in shock to see her in this state. "God, I hope she pulls through this." Chico hurried with them as fast as he could till he got grabbed from behind.

"I'm sorry but you'll have to wait here," said the head nurse.

"But I must be with her..." Chico pointed in the direction Suzanne was being taken as the nurse gripped Chico's arm and pulled him away from the emergency operating room door.

"I'm sorry, I can't let you in there, You'll have to wait here," the nurse said sternly. "Please sit down. Someone will be with you shortly".

Another nurse came to comfort Chico. "Please be patient sir, the doctors are doing all they can right now. Waiting is the hardest part. You will be informed of her condition as soon as possible," the nurse said as she guided Chico to the waiting room.

Chico sat on the chair, hunched over. His arms rested on his knees as his hands covered his face to hide his tears.

Chico cringed at the thought of losing her again. Chico folded his hands, looked up and stared as thoughts of Suzanne raced his mind. Chico continued to cry silently. He began to reminisce about their time together. Quietly he heard background music that reminded him more of her.

"...Nobody else could ever know, the part of me that can't let go.

And I would give anything I own, give up my life, my heart , my home.

I would give everything I own. Just to have you back again.

.... Is there someone you know, your loving them so,

But taking them all for granted. You may lose them one day,

Someone takes them away and they don't hear the words you long to say..."

Chico began to shiver from the thought. As he heard a popular song reminding of there love for each other. "Why?" Chico thought. As he covered his face with his hands.

"Chico, Chico!" Ed and Louie arrived to find Chico at the waiting room.

Chico rubbed his eyes as if hoping it were a dream, and slowly looked up.

"Oh God, I'm so glad youre here!" Chico cried as he got up and hugged Louie and Ed. Chico's face buried in each of Ed and Louie's shoulder.

"Son, how is she?" Louie asked as he gripped Chico's arm.

"She's alive. Barely. They were able to revive her in the ambulance," Chico said as he wiped his eyes.

Ed came and sat next to Chico and handed him a cup of coffee. "Here, Chico."

"Thanks Ed, Louie. I just can't believe this in happening." Chico looked at Ed.

"I know Chico. I heard the gun shot and as I ran to see what the commotion was all about, I saw her lying still. What happened any way?" Ed was concerned.

"Ed, Mando was basically trying to scare me by threatening to kill me. I don't think Mando really wanted to shoot me. We've been so close, we're like family," Chico cried.

"You know Chico, love can do a lot of things to people. I realized how obsessed he was with her the night before the shooting. Mando got angry with me and told me he would do anything to have her," Ed said as he watched the TV monitor.

" Hey, they're saying something about it on the news.... Listen!" Louie pointed to the TV.

"Breaking News... A Shooting occurred in East Los Angeles this morning. The shooting took place at a local garage owned by an Edward Brown. Police are investigating the crime scene. No word yet on the conation of the victim. Police have a suspect in custody. No charges have been formally made as of yet..."

Chico and Ed stared at the television as the news showed a picture of Mando after he was arrested.

"God, Mando looks terrible. He looks upset," Ed said as he shook his head in disbelief.

Chico angrily got from his chair and stood directly in front of Ed pointing to the TV.

"WOULDN"T YOU!" Chico angrily said as he paced back and forth.

"What?" Ed looked up at Chico.

"Ed, how would you feel if you were all of sudden arrested for attempted murder?" Chico gripped his head and flopped back into the chair across from Ed.

"Ed, as I was riding in the ambulance I kept thinking, I might of accidentally done the shooting, I mean, it all happened so fast Ed"

Chico held on to the arms of the chair tightly to keep from throwing a fit of rage.

"Mando and I were wrestling with each other. I was trying to keep him from shooting. All I know that there were times when that gun was in our faces. I remember our hands together on that pistol. I was trying to grip it off of him, as he was trying to aim at me and shoot Suddenly we heard the gun go off. I don't know about Mando. But I didn't see or hear Suzanne come out side."

Chico was frantically shaking. "Oh God, what if I shot her? I'd never forgive myself." Chico covered his face in shame.

"Listen to yourself Chico. You're not making any sense. What ever happened out there was an accident, regardless if you or Mando did it."

"Some how Mando being locked up at the cop shop, Ed. Doesn't seem like an accident to me."

"According to the cops, they've already locked him up and thrown away the key. Maybe I better go down to the cop shop and tell them it was an accident. Especially if it was my fault. What if they end sending Mando to prison? I'd never forgive myself for that!"

Chico got up and paced the waiting room floor.

"Not now Chico. If Mando finds out your there, he'll be furious! Wait till the morning," Ed tried to explain to Chico.

Quietly and slowly a doctor approached Ed, Louie and Chico.

" Who here is a relation to a Suzanne..."

" I am Doc. We are or were engaged to be married." Chico hurried over to the Doctor.

" Son, are you Chico Rodriguez?" The Doctor asked.

"Yes, why?" Chico worried.

"These are her personal items. I thought you might want to keep them." The Doctor handed Chico Suzanne's handbag.

"How is she Doc?" Chico said as he accepted Suzanne's bag.

"She is in intensive care. The surgery went well. She is drifting in and out of consciousness right now, however Chico, there is something you should know. Please sit down."

"What 's wrong Doc? Is she going to be alright?" Chico said as the Doctor guided Chico to the sofa.

"Chico, there's a very strong possibility Suzanne may never be able to conceive or carry a child due to the bullet wound."

Ed, saddened, put his hand on Chico's shoulder, and rubbed Chico's back to comfort him.

"Suz had always talked about having children. We joked around, naming our baby Ed or Edina if it was a girl. She was always fond of you, Ed." Chico wiped the tears from his eyes.

"Now Chico, don't talk like it will never happen. There's always a possibility Suzanne still might be able to conceive or you can even adopt a child," Louie said as he sat next to Chico.

Chico opened Suzanne's bag, took out her wallet and opened it. Chico found the picture taken of the him, Suzanne and Mando together.

"I remember when this was taken. We all seemed to be happy together," Chico said as he showed it to Ed and Louie.

"That was taken after she came back. Shortly after I arrived back from Puerto Rico," Chico said.

"I'm surprised you and Mando still remained friends after what he did to you two," Louie said.

"Yeah, well I thought Mando changed. Then I caught him in my bed with her!" Chico became angry.

"How do you think he could of pull it off pretending to be you, Chico?" Louie asked.

"God only knows Louie. She was very exhausted I know that for a fact. Anyone could of climbed into bed with her and she wouldn't of known it. She was out like a light according to Mando."

"Chico, what's done is done, you can't change the past," Ed said.

The doctor was reading Suzanne's chart.

"Can I see her doc?'" Chico asked.

"Yes, but make it brief. She needs her rest. And Chico please...Don't say anything to her about the injury. That will devastate her and she could go into shock and possible cardiac arrest"

Chico, fearing what could happen, started to make his way into ICU.

As Chico entered ICU, he saw all the equipment around Suzanne's bed.

Chico nervous about her condition sat next to Suzanne and brushed her hair back.

Suzanne stirred as she felt Chico's hand on her cheek. Suzanne slowly opened her eyes, focusing on the hand that embraced her.

As Suzanne's eyes focused on Chico, she began to cry. "Chico..."

"Shhh, please, Suzanne you need your strength." Chico held her hand and kissed it.

"I remember you and Mando were wrestling on the ground then the gun went off."

"Listen, Suzanne, I believe Mando didn't really want to kill me. The cops have Mando in jail for attempted murder. Somewhere in my heart, it's telling me that Mando never really wanted to kill me. Just scare me," Chico said as he gripped the bed railing.

"Have you seen him?" Suzanne asked.

"No Suz, just in the continuos coverage of Mando's arrest on the news though. They've been airing that all day. I'm going to stop by the jail tomorrow. I want to be here with you today and spend the night with you". Chico took hold of Suzanne's hand and kissed it, gently rubbing his face against it.

Suzanne could feel Chico's warm skin and side burns rub against her hand. Suzanne, felt a bit of comfort from that. Chico worried about what was happening to Mando.

"Chico, I 'm worried what if they try to put him in ...prison?" Suzanne couldn't bear the thought of Mando being in prison.

"That's why I want to go to the cop shop and tell my side of the story."

"Chico, aren't you afraid they might check out your record, knowing your past history and all?" Suzanne shrugged.

"Yeah Suz, that's why I want come to them, before they decide to come to me," Chico said, leaning over to Suzanne.

" I guarantee Chico, Mando isn't going to happy to see you. I can't imagine how he is going to be? I remember how angry he was after he confessed he loved me the night he drove me home. He couldn't understand that I still loved you, Chico."

Suzanne grabbed the bed sheets and pulled them up over her neck.

"That Chico, was frightening enough." Suzanne was worried for Chico.

"Shhh, you're not supposed to get all worked up Suz. If the doctors find out you're this way, they won't let me in to see you anymore."

Chico pulled up a chair next to her and spent the night with Suzanne at the hospital.

______________________________________________________

Early the next day, Chico woke up and left for the garage to change clothes and headed over to the jail.

Chico arrived by the garage entrance. The entrance was blocked off still from the crime scene.

Chico stood there in disbelief.

"Why Suzanne? Why here? Ed's business is gonna go down the tubes because of this."

Chico dreaded the thought, as he closed his eyes, of almost losing her, and the possibility of Ed's business failing.

Chico hustled to get a quick shower and a change of clothes. Chico grabbed the paper that was by the door as he headed out. Mando's picture was on the front page. He tucked the paper in the door and headed for the jail where Mando was held.

As Chico headed towards the county jail, reporters were swarming the entrance.

"Are all these reporters here to cover Mando's arrest?" Chico thought as he made his way to the door.

"Hey! " said a reporter quickly heading towards Chico. "You work for that old man don't you?"

"What?" Chico questioned as he tried to open the door to go in.

The reporter stuck his foot to keep the door from opening farther.

"You're that kid who works for that Edward Brown fella, who owns that garage where the shooting took place. Right?" said the reporter.

"Please, I don't want to get involved," Chico said, trying to pry open the door.

"Sure you are. We seen a photo Mando had in his wallet of the three of you."

The reporter showed Chico the photo.

"How did you get this photo? "Chico asked as he glanced at the familiar picture the reporter shoved in Chico's face.

"We reporters have ways of getting information, Mr. Rodriguez," the reporter said.

"Yeah so, what do you want?" Chico continued to try to pry the door open.

"I just want to ask a couple of questions. How 'bout it?" said the reporter.

"Will you leave me alone then?" Chico pleaded, as he gave up trying to open the door.

"Yeah, sure," said the reporter.

" It was reported that Mando was having an affair with your fiancée. Suzanne wouldn't abide to Mando's desires. Is that true?" The reporter shoved the mini recorder in Chico's face as a cameraman filmed them

Chico, angry at what he heard from the reporter, pushed him away and slugged him. The reporter rose up from the fall from Chico's fist.

"I can't believe you, there is a woman in the hospital dying and you have the gal to ask about some affair that happened?" Chico was furious.

"Well Mr. Rodriguez, isn't that why the shooting occurred?" said the reporter as the cameraman followed him.

Chico became enraged and shoved the reporter out of his way as he made his way to the jail.

"What's the matter Chico, can't handle the truth?" The reporter snapped as he adjusted his suit.

Chico turned around and headed toward the reporter as the cameraman was behind him. Chico couldn't control his anger any more and began to slug the reporter. Chico held the reporter against him, chest to chest, looked angrily at him, and tossed him to the ground.

Chico, disgusted, walked eagerly to the jail to calm down before seeing Mando.

"Don't worry, I'll get him on his way out of the jail." The reporter headed to the van and waited.

Chico headed towards the lock up area. A guard cornered Chico. "Where are you going kid?" said the officer.

"I'm going to visit someone I know who is in jail." Chico headed towards the holding area.

Another cop spotted Chico and cornered him. "Where are you going?"

"I'm going to visit someone who is in the jail cell," said Chico. The cop showed Chico where to go. "Thanks", Chico said, "but I know where it is. I've had my share of sleepovers here." Chico continued to head off to where Mando was held.

Chico found the guard that supervised the area where Mando was.

"Excuse me, I'm here to visit Mando" Chico was escorted to a special room where Chico and Mando would meet.

Another officer headed towards Mando's cell. Mando sat on his cot staring at the wall. His hands clenched tightly to the mattress.

"MANDO!" Yelled a security guard as he made his way towards his cell. "You have a visitor!"

The security guard opened up Mando's cell and handcuffed him. Mando was shackled at his feet also.

Mando, who had only spoken to reporters since the shooting, asked, "Who wants to see me? I'm tired of talking to reporters. They never tell the truth!"

The guard escort Mando to the room where they were supposed to meet. Mando walking slowly, lowered his head and looked toward the ground as he made his way to the room.

Chico was waiting anxiously. Suddenly the lock in the door opened. A guard and Mando wandered in.

Chico couldn't believe what he saw. Mando hadn't shaved and looked helpless in handcuffs. Mando, still with his head down, got help to be seated in the chair assigned to him.

"I can't believe I'm seeing this." Chico, showing sympathy, was shocked to see Mando in handcuffs and shackles.

Mando, fearing who would want to see him, closed his eyes, raised his head and wiped the sweat from his brow. Mando then opened his eyes.

Mando was shocked to see Chico.

"What are you doing here!" Mando couldn't believe Chico was here to visit him.

"They think I shot her Chico!" Mando rose up off his chair and swung his handcuffed hands upward out of anger.

"I just don't believe I killed her! I had no intentions to kill her. Chico I admit I was pissed off at you for loving her..." Mando yelled.

Mando slammed his fists against the table where Chico sat. Chico quickly arose up from the table. "God, I can't believe this happening to me!"

"Mando I know in my heart you didn't do it. It was an accident. I'm sure of it..." Chico pleaded.

Chico looked straight at Mando and said, "For all I know Mando, I could of caused the gun to go off!"

"Well tell that to the authorities then!" Mando said.

"You know Chico, I express my feelings towards what happened and all they do is threaten to put me in a padded cell". Mando said, carefully pacing the floor.

"There is no justice for an innocent man Chico!" Mando was agitated.

"Mando, Suzanne is recovering from her gun shot wound," Chico said.

"What? I thought she died. Chico. I watched her, we both watched her die. Chico," Mando said tearfully as he rested his hands on the table. "It's a miracle Suzanne is alive".

"The paramedics revived her in the ambulance and the surgery following went well, Mando. Except..." Chico sat down on the chair.

"Except what Chico?" Mando asked.

"There's a good possibility she may never be able to conceive or carry child, Mando," Chico said as he rested his arms on the table, his hands over his eyes to keep from getting upset.

"You mean she lost the baby?" Mando said.

"What? What baby?" Chico moved his hands to view Mando.

"Chico, she was feeling ill the night before the shooting. She mentioned to me that she might be pregnant," Mando said.

"Mando, I swear I had to idea," Chico was stunned.

"When she told me she might be pregnant she was worried that you were going to freak thinking it was mine and not yours, Chico," Mando worried.

"Now we may never know who the father is if she loses the baby, Chico," Mando said.

"Believe me Chico, Suzanne wasn't trying to hide it from you. She wanted to wait to see about some sort of test to see who the father was," Mando said as he settled down.

"Oh God, she has no idea what is about to happen to her. She always wanted us to have a child together Mando," Chico said.

"I gotta get over to the hospital Mando. I have to find a way to tell her before she finds out any other way."

"I understand Chico, please let me know how Suzanne is doing. Take it easy brother," Mando, looking stunned over Suzanne's survival, was escorted back to his cell as Chico left the room.

 

Chico left Mando and headed out of the County Jail. Chico, spotting the reporters, had to find an alternative route back to the hospital.

"God, I hope I can make it in time to tell her." Chico headed towards the hospital.

Later, Chico arrived back at the hospital. Ed and a few doctors where discussing something.

"Ed, " Chico tapped on Ed's shoulder. "Excuse me. I just came back from seeing Mando, doctor. He says there's a good chance that Suzanne might be pregnant," Chico eagerly said.

"Yes, Chico, the doctors and I were discussing that as you came in. With Suzanne's condition we needed another authorization to take the test," Ed expressed to Chico.

"We need to run tests on her to see if she is ok. Although I must warn you after what she's been through, she may not carry through her full pregnancy if she is pregnant. That is if her tests are positive and she is healthy enough to carry full term. She will need to be bed rest till the baby is born."

"How soon can we find out if she is Doc?" Chico asked.

"We are waiting for the results as we speak Chico, it's just a matter of time now," the doctor said.

Chico, Louie and Ed, waited patiently for the test results.

"Chico, Chico Rodriguez?" said another doctor as he walked in the waiting room.

"Yes, Yes!" Chico got up and headed toward to doctor.

"I must speak with you regarding Suzanne's condition," the doctor said.

Ed and Louie were at the other side of the room.

"Ah Chico, Ed and I are going to take a walk to the cafeteria. We'll be back. We'll leave you two alone," Louie said.

"Louie, wait, Ed please stay here. You are just as much a part of this as anyone. Plus I could use your support right now," Chico asked.

Louie and Ed came over to Chico and comforted him as the doctor was going to inform Chico.

"Doc, I want you to meet my good friends Ed Brown and Louie Wilson." Chico introduced them to the other doctor.

"Well Chico, we have some good news regarding Suzanne. Her wound will heal nicely. Should be up and around out of the hospital in a week or so." The doctor flipped Suzanne's chart.

"However, I'm concerned about her abdomen with the bullet wound. There's a possibility of it affecting the baby".

"So she is pregnant!" Chico got out of his chair with mixed emotions.

"Sorry Doc I had no Idea that she was pregnant until I spoke with Mando," Chico was shocked with reality thought about what lied ahead.

"Mando was right," Chico said as he thought about what to do.

"Mando? The guy that has been on the news, Mando?" The doctor said.

"Yeah, Doc, although, Mando and I discussed about who the father was."

"Chico, I need your word that you will not have Suzanne get all worked up over your situation regarding the relationship with you three. I need everyone close to her to help her get through her pregnancy. She's in very frail condition to be worrying who is the father of her child, right now. I'll need all of you to help calm her down till the baby is ok. Keep her occupied so Suzanne won't constantly worry about who the baby's father is."

Suddenly a uniformed officer approached Chico, and Ed.

"Chico Rodriguez, Edward Brown?" Asked the officer.

"You have been summoned to appear in court. Here are you documents." The officer handed Chico and Ed their documents.

"What's this all about? Chico asked.

"Yeah," said Ed.

"Read the paper."

"I don't believe this?" Chico continued to read the document. "They want me to appear in court to testify against Mando!'

"Isn't this a bit soon sir?" Ed asked.

"This is a very high profile case, Mr. Brown," the officer said.

"The District Attorney has requested and authorized to have Mando's trial moved up. It's scheduled to start sometime in the beginning of next month. You will be informed when and where it will take place."

"Still that seems so close," Ed said.

"Yeah Ed, but maybe that will be good for Mando," Chico said as they compared documents to each other.

Chico brushed his hair back, "I'm going to check on Suzanne."

Chico walked into the ICU Ward. Chico walked by Suzanne's bed and pulled the curtain open, only to find Suzanne agitated, tossing and turning.

"Chico! Chico !" Suzanne whispered, as she continued to toss and turn.

Chico hurried over and hugged Suzanne.

Suzanne raised herself up and hugged Chico tightly.

Chico continued to hug and calm Suzanne down.

Suzanne, dazed, "Chico, you're ok!"

"Yes, I'm ok." Chico continued to hug Suzanne, gently rubbing her back.

"Chico, I had a bad dream that you got shot. Thank God you're alright!"

Suzanne's fears were eased as Chico continued to comfort her. "Suz, I'm alright."

Chico brushed her hair back and kissed her forehead. Chico carefully sat by Suzanne on her bed.

"Suz, I want you to calm down. Everything is going to be ok. Think of our future together, Suz." Chico gripped her hands and kissed them. Chico leaned towards her and kissed her.

Suzanne, holding Chico's hand, rubbed it gently. "Chico, there's something I have to tell you".

"Chico, there's a possibility I might be pregnant." Suzanne feared how Chico s reaction would be, knowing that Chico knew of Mando's successful attempt to have her.

"Suz, I 'm aware of that. I went to the county jail this morning and visited Mando," Chico said.

Suzanne looked worried about Chico. "Oh God, Chico."

"Mando had mentioned about you telling him that you were possibly pregnant," Chico said.

"Oh God Chico, there's also a chance that Mando could be the baby's father!" Suzanne started to cry and shiver on how Chico would feel.

Chico held Suzanne's chin and kissed her.

"Shhh, Suz, take it easy. We will get through this together. Whether or not the baby is mine, I still want us to be together."

"Chico, what if the baby is Mando's, I'm sure he'll do anything to keep from us getting custody of the child." Suzanne was beside herself.

"Suz, let's not worry about that now. We need to concentrate on your health and the baby's". Chico leaned over Suzanne hugged her and comforted her to calm her down.

There behind Chico a man walked up and knocked on the wall of the room.

"Excuse me, Suzanne?" The man said.

"Yes?'" Suzanne wondered why a police officer was in her room.

Chico turned around and found an officer holding some papers. "What do you want with Suzanne?"

Chico got up off the bed, walked toward the officer. "Suzanne, you've been asked to appear in court to testify against Mando."

"What? Cheese and Crackers," Chico whispered.

"You've got to be out of your mind? She can't testify in her condition." Chico mumbled something in Spanish, raising his hands, looking upward.

Suzanne looked shocked, covered her head with her hands. "This is insane."

Chico walked over to the other side of the room and motioned the officer to follow him.

"Can't you see she's in a fragile condition? Testifying against Mando will do harm to her and the baby. I won't allow it!" Chico angrily said.

"If she does not follow the District attorneys request to appear in court, she will be served jail time for withholding evidence against the court, sir."

The officer handed him more papers, then left the room. Chico angrily tossed the papers on the floor.

Chico came to Suzanne 's bed and sat next to her. Chico, fearing for her health and the baby's, leaned over to her and hugged her.

"We will get through this Suz". Chico hugging her gently rubbed her back and started to cry. Suzanne buried her head on Chico's shoulder and cried along with him.

Ed walked slowly in the room as the officer walked out.

"Suzanne, I'm sorry that you have to go through this. I overheard the officer talk to you about the trial." Ed came to Suzanne and hugged her.

"I hope you and little Ed or Edina are ok?" Ed smiled.

Suzanne had a questionable look at Chico.

"Suz, I mentioned to Ed that if we were ever to have kids we were going to name the child after him," Chico said as he wiped his eyes from his tears.

"Well Chico, I better get going. I'll be at my residence if you need me for anything."

Chico got off the bed and approached Ed. "Ed, you have no idea how much that means to me."

Suzanne extended her hand to Ed's. "Ed, thank you for all your support. You've been like a father to me." Ed leaned over to Suzanne and hugged her.

Chico started to shake Ed's hand, reached over to hug him instead. "Love you Ed," Chico said as he tried to fight the tears.,

Ed said walked out of the room in tears.

As the days went by, the doctors came to the decision of releasing Suzanne.

Chico and Ed were with Suzanne as the doctor came in the room.

"Well Suzanne, how are you feeling today?" The doctor came to examine Suzanne.

"Bored Doc, any chance I can go home soon?" Suzanne said as they began to examine her.

"Very possible Suzanne, as soon as we check you out here." The doctor took a look at her wounded area, and examined her.

"Well I see no harm in releasing you today Suzanne. However I have spoken to your fiancée regarding your situation with the baby. I do not want you to exert yourself to the point of me sending you back here, Chico has agreed about you needing more bed rest, and keeping you away from stressing over the recent news coverage."

"Alright doc, I will do my best to follow what you've requested," Suzanne said.

"Well that's great news Suz. Louie and I have helped Chico set up the apartment so it is easier for you to get around if needed," Ed smiled.

"Ah Ed, that was so nice you and Louie. Thank you," Suzanne said as she got up out of the bed.

Chico helped Suzanne get ready as they were getting ready to leave.

"Suzanne, all set?" said the nurse with the wheel chair.

"Yeah," Chico and the nurse helped Suzanne in the wheelchair.

As the nurse wheeled Suzanne, Louie and Ed followed behind Chico was beside her.

Suddenly a swarm of news people headed their direction.

"Suzanne, Suzanne, what do you plan on saying regarding against Mando?" a reporter said as he shoved the mini recorder in her face.

Suddenly light bulbs flashed, blinding Suzanne. Suzanne tried to block her face away for the photographers.

Chico tried to push them away. "Please leave us alone. She doesn't want to talk now!" Chico looked at Suzanne. Suzanne was frightened by the crowded group of reporters.

Ed and Louie pushed a few of them away. Chico noticed the reporter Ed was trying to shove away.

"No Ed, let me have this one. Why can't you leave us alone, man!" Chico recognized him from the jail.

"Suzanne, are you planning on visiting Mando, after finding out you might be carrying his child!" The reporter yelled as Suzanne, Ed and Louie were heading out the door.

Chico grasped the reporter's arm with his fist up ready to hit him. "Come on try it, Chico, you want to spend a night at jail with your buddy Mando, huh?"

After realizing what he said. Chico put his fist down. " Your not worth it man!" Chico pushed him aside and caught up with Suzanne.

"I can't believe this!" Chico said as he caught up with them.

"Don't worry about it Chico, you can't let that man's opinion get to you like this," Suzanne said as she put her hand on his waist. "I have a feeling there's more to come."

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As Louie made his way towards the back of the garage, Ed motioned to Louie to take the back way in.

"Louie, head back towards the alley so Suzanne doesn't have to see the crime scene again," Ed quietly said.

"Ok Ed, " Louie said as he made is way around the block to the back of the garage.

"Chico it's so nice to be home again." Suzanne held Chico's hand and squeezed it slightly.

Chico squeezed his hand back to her, held her chin and kissed her. "Are you going to be ok, Suz?" Chico looked concerned.

"I don't know Chico, we'll see when I get out of the car." Suzanne with her hand on Chico's knee brushed it slightly.

"Welcome home Suzy" Louie shouted with a grin. "It's wonderful to have you back where you belong," Louie said as he looked in the rearview mirror at Suzanne.

"Thanks Louie, It's great to be home again". Suzanne reached over and took hold of Louie's hand.

"Suz, one of the neighbors has offered to stop by and lend you a hand. She said something about Ed not being a good cook and with you laid up. She was willing to help out," Chico said.

"Who said I wasn't a good cook, Chico?" Ed turned around wondering.

"That's nice Chico, what is her name?" Suzanne said.

"Della, Della Rodgers, she's Ed's new landlord."

"Hmm, I'll have to have a talk with that woman," Ed said as he got ready to open his door.

Chico got out of the car and helped Suzanne out. As everyone made their way into the garage, Suzanne looked around at the entrance of the garage. Something looked different to her.

"Ed, you haven't been in business since the shooting have you?" Suzanne said as she looked around, towards the door.

Chico hurried over to Suzanne.

"Ah Suz, let's go over here and get settled in ok?" Chico tried to get Suzanne's attention away from the garage door.

"Chico please." With sincerity, Suzanne tried to get to Chico to explain what was happening.

Chico went to the door and raised it. "Ok Suzanne, you might as well know." Chico came to Suzanne and hugged her.

"Please Suzanne, you've had it rough already. Seeing this will only bring back bad memories."

Suzanne looked over Chico's shoulder. Scared at what she saw, she buried her head in Chico's chest.

Suzanne gasped. "I'm ok, I'm ok Chico," Suzanne said as she was shaking.

"Come on lets get settled in. Della said she'd be here sometime early afternoon."

Chico, Ed and Louie helped get Suzanne's things in order. Suzanne entered Chico's apartment.

"I appreciate everything you've done Ed, Louie," Suzanne said as she sat on the couch.

"Suz, whatever you do, just don't let what happen to you get you down," Louie said. "You two are starting your lives together. God gave you a new lease on life and I'm sure he would want you two to be happy together." Louie hugged Suzanne.

"Well, Ed, Chico, I must go home and change for work, or I'll be on the unemployment line," Louie said.

"Thank you so much Louie for your help." Chico said.

"Chico, anything to help out a fellow Chicano. Seeing that I'm an honorary member." Louie smiled and tipped his hat.

Ed shook his head in disbelief.

"Well Chico as they say in the garbage business, time and trash waits for no one!" Louie headed out of the apartment.

Chico took hold of Suzanne's hand as he sat next to her on the couch. "Well you two, seeing that I'm not busy and all, if you don't mind I think I'll take myself a nap," Ed said as he was about to head out of the apartment.

"Ok, Ed," Chico said.

Suzanne, saddened at what Ed had said, nudged Chico. "Chico, please give me a hand I want to say something to Ed." Chico helped Suzanne up and escorted her towards Ed. "Thanks Chico, I'll be fine." Chico watched her look for Ed.

"Ed?" Suzanne was just out the door when Ed was halfway up the stairs.

Ed turned around and walked down the stairs.

"Ed, I am so sorry I caused your business to stop running. I know you must be crushed."

Suzanne rested her hand upon Ed's on the stair rail.

"Suzanne, believe me. You mean more to me then this garage. I'll do anything to keep you and Chico together. If it means that the garage loses some business between now and the trial, so be it." Ed patted her hand on top of his.

"If I hadn't come back the second time this never would have happened," Suzanne said as she leaned against the stair rail.

"Suz, you followed your heart, and this is where it lead. You and Chico where meant for each other. Now, go get some rest Suzanne before I send you back to the hospital." Ed, smiling, embraced Suzanne then went on up stairs.

Chico stepped out of the apartment. "Is everything alright?"

Chico walked up to her and put his arm around her then they both entered the apartment. "Yes, Chico. I believe everything will be alright." Suzanne said as she smiled at Chico.

"Great then, now let's get some rest," Chico escorted Suzanne in the apartment.

Later in the afternoon, someone pounded on the door by the garage.

Chico and Suzanne were still resting.

Chico wiped his eyes as he rose out of bed. "Who could that be?" Chico quickly headed out to the door.

"I'm coming, I'm coming. Hold on." Chico rushed to unlock the door.

"Well that's a mighty fine welcome! Hello, Chico." Della came in with some bags.

"Sorry Della, it's been a hard day. Here let me help you." Chico grabbed Della's bag of food then, headed by the table by the workbench.

"Chico, how is it going? I can't imagine what you and your girl are going through," Della asked as she got the meal ready.

"Della, I wouldn't know where to begin to start!" Chico said as he helped her.

"Chico, I watched you and Suzanne leave the hospital on the afternoon news. It must be horrifying for the both of you." Della sat down by the table.

"Della, the press won't leave us alone! Now, I know how Mando is feeling about the press." Chico twirled a lid on the table.

"You mean you spoke to Mando? That's kinda risky isn't?" Della passed out the plates for everyone.

"Della, I felt I had too. He had no idea that Suzanne was still alive till I mentioned it to him".

"You just be careful now Chico. Anyone that tries to shoot me I stay away from. I think you should too."

"But that's it Della, I don't think Mando really wanted to do it," Chico said.

"Anyone who sticks a gun in my face Chico, means he's out to kill" Della said.

'Where's Ed, that old buzzard?" Della wondered.

"Ed, he's taking a nap. Della, Ed is taking it really hard. Yet he's doing his best not to show it in front of Suzanne," Chico said.

Della got up and stood in front of the stairs.

"Ed, you old coot, come down stairs and eat your lunch!" Della yelled.

"Excuse me Della, I'm going to wake up Suzanne." Chico left to go get her.

Ed wandered downstairs. "Della, you woke me up from a beautiful dream!"

"What was it about Ed?" Della asked with her arms on her hips.

"I dreamed you were telling me you were leaving and never coming back!" Ed grumbled as he made his way down stairs.

"Gee that was sweet of you Ed. Where did I go?" Della asked.

"Zembobaiye" Ed said as he sat himself down.

Della looked at Ed and her shook her head in disbelief,

Chico went into the apartment to wake Suzanne. Chico went to nudge her.

"Suz, it's time for lunch, Della is here. I would like you to meet her."

Suzanne rose out of bed. Chico and her headed for the table.

"Della, I want to meet the love of my life Suzanne." Chico smiled. Suzanne reached over and shook Della's hand,

"Nice to meet you Della, I've heard your quite a cook. From what I hear better then Chico," Suzanne said.

"Honey, anyone that dumps as much hot sauce in one meal as much as Chico and lives to tell about it. Deserves a gal like you to tame him down." Della said as she took a hold of Chico's hot sauce bottle and looked at it in disbelief.

"Well f Suzanne can survive a bullet in her. She can survive my cooking." Chico said as he passed the rolls.

"You two have any plans tomorrow?" Della asked.

"I got something's I have to do" Chico said, " Suzanne is going to rest and do absolutely nothing, right Suz". Chico hugged her and held her chin and kissed her.

"Yeah I have to follow doctors orders and rest for a while," Suzanne sighed.

"Sounds quite dull, but it is for your own good and for the baby's," Della said.

"Tell me about it, I have rested enough already." Suzanne said.

"Well, I have to get going. I promised Reverend Bemis I would see him today. I believe he wanted to stop by and visit you Suz. He thought though, he wouldn't be able to show up till later in the afternoon," Chico said.

Chico covered his head with his hands. There was quietness among the table.

"Are you alright Chico?" Della asked as she approached him.

"Della, It's just hitting me hard." Chico tried to say as he choked up.

"Chico, sooner or later it was all bound to effect you? I realized you were hurting and upset. When I came in the door . . ."

Della reached out her arms and hugged Chico.

"Chico, just let it all out". Della comforted Chico by rubbing his back. Ed came to him and comforted Chico also.

"Chico, it is ok to express your feelings. You can only hide your feelings for so long," Della whispered.

Suzanne in tears approached Chico. "We will get through this Chico. Nothing will get in our way."

Chico hugged Suzanne, breathing ever so heavy from the release of his emotions, felt at ease as they embraced.

Chico wiped his eyes and settled down. Thought about what he had to do today.

"Well, I better get going. I will get in touch with you later Suz," Chico kissed her good bye, embraced everyone, then headed out the door.

"Here Suzanne, Let me help up and take you to the apartment. Ed, I'll be next door to my shop if you need anything." Della escorted Suzanne back at the apartment. Ed helped her also.

"Thanks Della, you've been really sweet offering to help out," Suzanne said as they made there way to the couch.

"Anytime hon, I don't want nothing bad to happen to you and Chico," Della told Suzanne as she helped her down on the couch and got ready to leave.


"Just holler Suzy if you need anything, I right down the alley here, ok?"

"You know Suz, you can always count on us if you need anything." Ed said as he fluffed up a pillow for her.

"Thank you Della, Ed". Suzanne hugged Della then Ed. Suzanne then grabbed some magazines to look at. "

"What does Chico have here to read. Popular Mechanics? No, I don't have a clue about mechanical stuff? Hmm, here's a local magazine that looks interesting . I think I'll check it out".

Suzanne browsed through the magazine stumbling through an article regarding the shooting.

"Oh dear!" Suzanne thought as she quickly closed the magazine and pushed it away.

"What else does Chico have to read around here," Suzanne found another one to read, paged through the magazine. Suzanne eyed the other one she pushed aside debating to read it.

"I want to read that article and I don't want to read that article" Suzanne thought. As she toyed with it. Suzanne quickly grabbed the magazine that had the shooting article in it and began to read it.

"Ah, this is terrible! Mando is not getting any fair press. They're taking this all out of proportion!" Suzanne thought. As she closed the magazine and opened it again.

"Why did it have to come to this Mando?" Suzanne said to herself as she saw a picture of Mando's mug shot. "I wonder how he's doing? God, I hope there at least treating him ok."

Suzanne had a thought over come her. " God, get this thought out of my head. I can't, I shouldn't. Chico would never allow it, the doctor's would have out back in the hospital."

Suzanne struggled to get it out of head. By turning on the radio.

"Still no one has to know. Della and Chico won't be back here for hours. That does it! I 'm going away for a while. Just in case, I better leave a note stating I'll be back in a few. Hopefully they'll think I'm going to the doctors or something."

Suzanne wrote a note and carefully got ready to head out the door. Suzanne went to the door by the garage and looked out as she crept it open. "Well the coast is clear." Suzanne hurried over to the corner to flag a cab.

A cab came cruising by as Suzanne flagged it down. The cab pulled over for her. Suzanne hurried in the cab. "Where to miss?" said the cab driver.

Suzanne covering her head so she couldn't be recognized by all the press coverage said. " To the county jail please and hurry". The cab spoon off towards the freeway.

Suzanne had mixed emotions regarding her visit to Mando as the cab got closer to her destination. Suzanne covered her face not just out of embarrassment from the media coverage but dealing with nervousness about approaching her suspected baby's father.

"Here we are, Miss," the cab driver said.

"Here, you go, thanks." Suzanne tossed him the cab fare and went up the stairs to the County jail.

Suzanne looked up at the enormously size of the building, thinking how could anyone be locked up here.

"Ok Suz, here it goes. Be brave be strong." Suzanne said to herself as she made her way up the stairs.

Suzanne took her sunglasses out of her purse then put them on. Just hoping no one would recognize her as she was making her way to the main office.

"Excuse me Ma'am" Suzanne said. " I would like to know where the lock up area is. I would to visit someone here that's in jail." The officer gave Suzanne directions,

"Thanks," Suzanne headed out the towards the jail lock up area.

As Suzanne left, the officers spoke of her appearance here at the jail.

"Hey isn't that the girl that got shot by that Mando character?" the officers said.

As the officers spoke of her, some had called the press and media coverage regarding her arrival here at the jail.

Suzanne entered the area where Mando was being held. "Excuse me, I've come here to see Mando if I may." The officer motioned her to a restricted area.

"Here Miss, please wait in this room." The officer led Suzanne to a special room. The room was similar to where Chico met Mando earlier.

"Please wait here as we bring out the inmate ma'am," the officer told her. Suzanne nervously looked around the room. A loud noise suddenly came across the room. Two officers walked in, one in front of Mando and the other in back of him.

Mando slumped his head down in disgust saying, "I don't want to talk to the media. I'm tired of all the lies!"

Suzanne feared the worst when she saw him. In tears she silently said, "Mando, I'm so sorry it had to be this way."

The officers sat Mando down. Mando, still not knowing who was here to see him, lowered his head in his hands. "I am an innocent man!" Mando yelled.

Suzanne couldn't comprehend seeing Mando in jail. Suzanne rose up and sadly said, "Yes, you are," as she began to cry.

"Huh? What?" Mando said as he slowly rose his head up.

"Oh my God! What the hell are you doing here Suzanne!" Mando, blinking his eyes, couldn't believe she was here.

"I can't believe you're actually alive!"

Mando got up from his seat. Tried to get a closer look, as the officers came closer to Mando to hold him back.

"Suz, when Chico told me you were alive I couldn't believe it. Oh God! " Mando tried again to come towards her to hug her as the cops held him back. Mando saddened from not being able to embrace her sat back at his seat.

"How did you get here Suz? I'm sure Chico didn't approve of this?" Mando said.

"I took a cab Mando when everyone left me alone at Ed's," Suzanne said quietly out of fear.

"Suz, I want to you to know personally. I had no intentions to hurt anyone. My only purpose for the gun was to scare Chico into accepting my wanting you."

"Mando ...I know. I can't believe you could hurt anyone .You know how much you mean to me." Suzanne started to cry.

"Yes I know. Yet you're still involved with Chico. What if that baby is mine?" Mando patted his chest.

"I am a apart of this as much as Chico you know," Mando said angrily.

"Mando, please you're scaring me. Chico and I've decided regardless who the father was, we will raise the baby together."

Mando agitated started to pace the floor.

"What? You're leaving me out if it? What if it's mine? I gotta get out of here before I snap. See you around Suz." Mando angrily yelled out for a guard so he could leave. "GUARD GET ME OUTTA HERE!"

Suzanne sat there in disbelief. Confused about what to make of Mando's reaction, she thought about baby's future.

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Chico left the hardware store, only to be sidetracked by the store a few doors down. There was crowd of people looking, pointing towards the window.

"I wonder what's going on?'" Chico with his bag of items from the hardware store walked over there.

Chico spotted the crowd looking at an appliance store with televisions in the window display.

"What's going on...?" Chico asked. Chico gasped as he got a good look at one of the TV's. Chico couldn't believe what he saw.

"She didn't!" Chico couldn't believe it. The Coverage showed Mando and Suzanne visiting with each other from the surveillance camera.

"She went to visit Mando! My God, the press is going to rip her apart. The baby!" Chico dropped his bag of items, ran as fast as he could to the jail hoping to catch her before she left.

Suzanne hurried to get out of the jail hoping to get back home before everyone else did.

Suzanne grabbed the door as press and television reporters hounded her with questions. "How did they know I was here?" Suzanne thought as she tried and succeeded in flagging down a neighboring cab.

The cab turned around over to her side of the street. As the cab pulled in, Suzanne opened the door. Suzanne yelled the directions to the driver as she tried to pull the door shut but struggled.

As Suzanne attempted to close the door, the door suddenly swung back open. Suzanne got yanked from behind by her arm.

"Leave me alone I don't want to talk to anyone!" Suzanne yelled with her back to them.

"What the hell are you doing here! " Chico yelled as he waved the cab away. "Why are you here at the jail?" Chico tried to control his anger.

Suzanne was shocked to see Chico. "Chico, please, you're hurting me." Chico gripped her arm.

Chico sarcastically laughed. "Hurting you? Why are you here at the jail visiting Mando in your condition? You know it's not good for the baby."

"Chico, I was reading an article in a local magazine at the apartment regarding Mando. I felt helpless for him Chico, I didn't know what to do. I felt if I went to see Mando I would understand".

Suzanne looked into Chico's angry eyes.

"Understand what Suzanne? That deep down you still love him?" Chico held her close.

"Chico, please, you're making a scene," Suzanne cried, as she looked at a few people pass them by.

"Making a scene? You want me to make a scene?" Chico, raising his hands, raised his voice.

"Here Suz, this is making a scene!" Chico held her closer to him and deeply kissed her hard. Chico wouldn't let go of her.

Chico released from her and then walked away. Suzanne crouched down to her knees on the sidewalk.

"Chico, I'm so sorry. Mando knows I still and will always love you Chico." Suzanne hid her face to hide the tears.

"Please Chico, I never meant no harm going to see Mando. I felt it was something I needed to do alone. I realized after seeing him Chico, it was a mistake. Please forgive me". Suzanne looked up to Chico and begged for forgiveness.

Chico looked into Suzanne's eyes and gave into her. "Please, Suzanne don't ever do that again. With the trial coming up very soon and the baby I just don't want anything to happen to you."

Chico bent down to help Suzanne up due to her pregnancy.

"The trial" Suzanne thought. "It's coming up so fast!"

"Come on Suz, let's head on home." Chico held her hand and flagged a cab to go home.

As they were heading home they reflected upon their first meeting each other at the garage.

The days came closer for Mando's trial to begin. As well as Suzanne's delivery date coming soon.

"I can't believe it Chico. Mando's trial starts today," Ed said as he read the paper. It sure came quickly. I hope that it is a good sign Chico," Ed said as he read the paper.

"Yeah Ed. I hope it goes well for him." Chico said as he was filing papers away.

"Hopefully when we have to testify tomorrow it will go smoothly. For Suzanne's sake at least." Chico threw out a few papers in the garbage.

Suzanne came to the table and sat down. " Oh! I'll be glad when this baby is ready to depart from me Chico," Suzanne said as tried to position herself to get more comfortable.

"Here Suz, let me help you" Chico went over to Suzanne, took hold of her feet and rubbed them.

"Do you think that's gonna help Chico?" Ed said as he looked at him rubbing her feet.

"Ed," as Suzanne slumped down further on the chair. "You have no idea how good this feels. Just imagine carrying the weight of one humongous watermelon strapped on your belly and you'll know what I mean".

"Here Ed, wanna do the other foot? " Suzanne laughed as she raised her foot towards Ed.

"No, no, I'll leave the doctoring to Chico," Ed said as he looked at Suzanne's foot in front of him.

"Well Ed, I believe that's how Suzanne got pregnant in the first place," Chico said smiling with a wink.

"Who's the doctor, you or Mando?" Ed said as he read the paper.

Chico let go of her foot. "Ed leave Mando out of this! We are raising the baby regardless whose it is. Besides, I can tell by the way Suzanne is carrying it. It's a Rodriguez baby. See how low she is carrying it?"

Ed, confused, looked at Suzanne's belly.

"Don't tell me, let me guess. The lower the baby the quicker the exit. . Just like it was when you were hot-wiring everything. The quicker you got it done the easier it was for you to get away from the cops."

"Or how about get a couple of those fuzzy dice and have her wear it around her neck. Suzanne can be her own version of a Peurtorican mobile as you call them Chico," Ed said.

"Oh yeah, right Chico, all I have to do is prop a bobbing dog on my belly and every time the baby kicks it's head will be going up and down."

"You got it Mama!" Chico smiled as he continued to rub her feet.

The phone rang in the office. "I'll get it!' " Ed ran into the office to pick up the phone.

"Ed Browns Garage!" Ed said. "Oh, hello officer. Really? Hmm, ok, I'll inform everyone then. Thanks, bye." Ed hung up the phone and wandered back to the table. "Chico, Suzanne," Ed sat down at his seat.

"What?" They both said.

"Suzanne, you've been moved to be first on the stand tomorrow," Ed said as he leaned over to her

Suzanne sighed. " Oh great! Just what I need. My luck I'll be on the stand all day!" Suzanne leaned over the table covering her head.

"You gonna be ok Suz?" Chico asked as he put his arm around her.

"I hope so, Well at least I'll get it over with. I just wonder if Mando will be in the court room?" Suzanne wondered.

"You know Suz, it's possible," Ed said.

"Well if you two don't mind. I think I'll call it a day a get some rest" Suzanne said.

"Here Suz, I'll help you to bed," Chico said.

Chico escorted Suzanne to the apartment. Ed got up and opened the door for them saying, "Good night, Ed or Edina," then patted Suzanne's tummy. Suzanne hugged Ed good night.

"Yeah Ed, I think I'll do the same," Chico said with a wink.

"Suz, just don't lose sleep over tomorrow ok mi amore. I'm sure you'll do fine." Chico guided Suzanne to the bed and hugged her and kissed her goodnight.

Suzanne rose from a restless sleep. " Ah, this is going to be brutal, I just know it!" Suzanne said as she turned over. "Chico. Chico, it's time to get up to go to the courthouse. I need your help getting up!" Chico quickly rose and help Suzanne get ready for the trial.

Chico, Ed and Suzanne left to go to the courthouse. As they drove closer a sea of media coverage started to make its full view.

Suzanne sighed, "There must be TV stations here from all over the state and beyond," Suzanne thought. Suzanne leaned against the window looking at all the media vans as they drove by. Ed pulled in to a parking space. " Sorry Suz, all the media vans have vacated the entrance. I can't let you out in front," Ed apologized.

"Thanks Ed, I know your doing all you can." Ed got out of the car and waited for Chico and Suzanne.

"Suz," Chico said as he put his arm around her and other his hand on her belly. "I will pray for you to get through this when you up on the stand. If Mando happens to be there, try not to let him scare you into telling what they want to hear."

Chico hugged Suzanne and kissed her. Gently brushing her hair back with his hand, he whispered "I love you" in her ear.

"I love you too Chico," Suzanne said as she nuzzled Chico, feeling his warm skin against his side burns.

"Well, let's get this show on the road," Ed said, as he motioned to Chico by pointing to his watch.

Chico and Suzanne got out of the car. Ed, Chico, and Suzanne headed towards the courthouse.

"Chico, how are we going to get in the court house with all the media by the front entrance?" Suzanne asked.

"We just have to push our way through, Suz. Just ignore the reporters. OK?" Chico said,

Chico, Ed, and Suzanne pushed their way through as reporters shoved the tape recorders and mikes in their faces. "Suzanne! Suzanne! What will you say against Mando's defense?" the reporters said.

"Just keep walking, Suzanne, we're almost there," Chico said as they made there way into the building.

Chico held Suzanne against him as they made their way throughout the courthouse building looking for the room they were supposed to appear in. "There it is Suz. Ready to go in?" Chico said as he tried to cover her from the media.

"Ready as I'll ever be, Chico. Let's get this over with."

Ed, Chico, and Suzanne found a seat close to the front. " Hey I got here as soon as I could. How's it going Suzy?" Louie said as he hustled over.

Chico got up to hug Louie. Louie scooted over and hugged Suzanne. "I'm doing ok, Louie."

Louie reached over and shook Ed's hand. "Mornin' Ed."

"Suz, you look like you're gonna drop any minute girl!" Louie smiled as he rubbed Suzanne's belly.

Chico, nervous about the trial and the due date of the baby, shook his head and messed with his hair.

"Ah Louie, that's just what we need is Suzanne dropping in the middle of her testimony," Chico said.

"Shhh, don't give the baby any ideas Chico!" Suzanne said as she rubbed her belly.

"Uh oh, everyone is coming out of the chamber room" Ed said as he held Suzanne's hand for comfort.

"Will the court rise! The honorable Judge Miller residing."

The judge sat down and slammed his gavel. "Case the City of Los Angeles vs. Mando will start."

"Bailiff, as a request to the prosecutor the guards will bring the inmate out and be placed in his appropriate seat," the Judge said.

"What? Oh Lord give me strength to get through this," Suzanne said as she covered her face.

"Suz! I'm so sorry!" Chico said as the guards opened the side door so Mando could enter the courtroom. Mando made his way in the courtroom. Mando was showing no emotion to either Suzanne or Chico.

"Oh Chico, this is not good, not good at all," Louie said. Chico leaned over to Suzanne.

"Suzanne, whatever you do, do not let him get the best of you!" Chico said.

The Judge called the plaintiff.

"Your honor I would like to call my first witness...Suzanne."

"Suzanne, will you please step forward?" Suzanne got up with the help of Chico. Suzanne took a deep breath and started her trek towards the stand.

Suzanne stood inside the booth. "Please raise your right hand. Do you solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?" the officer asked.

"I do!" Suzanne said.

"You may sit down." Suzanne settled herself down and got ready to be questioned against Mando.

All eyes were upon her. Chico leaned forward resting his elbows on his knees. Head rested on his hands, Chico's were fixed on hers.

"Suzanne... Please explain to the jury what exactly happened the night before the incident that might have caused the shooting."

"Oh God!" Suzanne thought. "They want me to explain about Mando pretending he was Chico..."

"I had a rough day due to the arguing Chico and Mando had concerning me. All I remember was that I mentioned to Chico that I wanted to go to bed early because I was exhausted. Chico said good night to me. I fell asleep instantly. I remember feeling the bed move thinking Chico was going to bed. I remember something about telling him that he was back home. Then I felt what I thought was Chico's finger indicating to be quiet. Telling me to shush. I felt the warm arms around me, embracing me as then as well as his lips that I thought were Chico's greet me in response to having intercourse. I gave in to what I thought was Chico's invitation and ended up having a good amount of sex I'm afraid."

Suzanne began to cry. "Oh God, I had no idea it was Mando till Chico came in, screaming!'

"Was Mando forceful to you at all?" asked the prosecutor

Suzanne looked at Mando then Chico. " No! Mando was very gentle ".

"So he never really hurt you? Did he satisfy you?" asked the prosecutor.

"I object your honor!" yelled the attorney for Suzanne.

"Sustained!" The judge said.

"Did Mando give you satisfaction?"

"Oh God, why here, why now, in front of Chico. In front of Mando! Suzanne thought.

"Should I repeat the question Suzanne?" The prosecutor asked.

Suzanne shook her head no.

"Mando was...gently caressing me. I had no idea he wasn't Chico," Suzanne said.

"Suzanne answer the question," the prosecutor walked towards his table.

Suzanne looked at Chico. Then Mando. " Yes! I had absolutely no idea it wasn't Chico! I just felt his tender touch and just assumed it was Chico. It was dark, I couldn't see anything!" Suzanne hysterically cried.

Chico looked at her in disbelief. Mando smiled with satisfaction and shook his head in recognition of his accomplishment with Suzanne.

Chico noticing Mando's behavior got in a rage. " MANDO, WHY?" Chico stood up looking down at Mando in tears after hearing Suzanne speak, had to be held back so he wouldn't slug Mando.

"Chico, Chico! Take it easy!" Ed and Louie said.

The Judge slammed the gavel on the bench. "Mr. Rodriguez, one more outburst like that, and I'll throw you in contempt of court.

Ed and Louie sat Chico down and tried to calm him down. Chico covered his face in embarrassment while he cried. "How could Mando do such a thing to her! How could she not know it wasn't me!" Chico was hysterical with emotion.

"Chico, it's all apart of the prosecution. They'll do anything to tear you and Suzanne apart. Just think about your baby's future. You and Suzanne have so much to live for. You know deep down inside Suzanne loves you," Ed said as he tired to calm Chico down.

Suzanne was upset about having to tell the court and the press her reaction to Mando's seduction.

"One more question Suzanne then you may step down." said the prosecutor. "Were you aware of Mando's obsession for you when Chico was gone to Puerto Rico or were you already obsessed with Mando while your fiancé was out of the country?"

Chico tried to control his anger by gripping the chair he sat on. The knuckles of his hands were showing white from the force of his grip.

"When I found out that Chico had left, I was upset, I kept telling Mando it was my fault he left for Puerto Rico. Mando on the other hand was the only one there at the time to comfort me. He offered his shoulder to cry on. I remember his sad eyes as he told me why he left. Mando said it was because I was gone."

Suzanne wiped her eyes looked at Chico and Mando.

"I was so upset when he told me that. I collapsed in Mando's arms for comfort. I just rested against him and cried. He however comforted me by telling me it was all right and casually rubbing my back, whispering in my ear, 'It's alright, it's alright'!" Suzanne said in tears.

"He had his face close to mine as he told it was alright. I could feel the heat of his breath and his warmth of his side burns. I don't know if he was really tiring to comfort me or casually seducing me!"

Suzanne bent forward holding her stomach. " Ah!" Suzanne cried.

Chico rose up in fear of the baby. "Oh no Suzanne!" Chico leaped over the railing and rushed over to her.

"Suzanne!" Chico held her as officers tried to approach Chico.

"Suz, are you alright?" Chico held her, and wiped her forehead from the perspiration from the testimony.

"Chico, I think the baby 's coming!" Suzanne told Chico as he comforted her.

"I need an ambulance she' s in having her baby!" Chico yelled. Mando, shocked, wanted to help but was held back.

As the ambulance arrived several police officers help assist Suzanne on a gurney as the paramedics checked her over. Chico stayed by Suzanne as they began to strap her on.

Mando leaned over to see how Suzanne was. "Please let me get a closer look. Please. I'm handcuffed. I can't do nothing to nobody even if I wanted to!"

The officer gave in to Mando's plea and escorted Mando towards Suzanne. Chico, worried about Suzanne, looked up and saw Mando try to get a glimpse of Suzanne. Chico, showing compassion, motioned Mando to come over.

Mando and the officer walked over to Suzanne. " Suzanne," Mando said. "You'll be fine, so will the baby." Mando wanted so much to embrace her but was unable to do to the handcuffs.

As the paramedics were wheeling Suzanne away, Chico started to follow them. Chico turned his back only to look at Mando saddened for not being there to help them.

Chico stopped his footing, then walked towards Mando. Mando his head down from the shame of the trial, looked up finding Chico ready to embrace him.

"Good Luck and congratulations Chico!" Mando whispered. "You're going to make a great father." Mando wiped his eyes with his jail uniform sleeve and shook his head yes as if to go ahead.

Ed and Louie caught up with Chico after meeting with the judge and prosecutors. "Hey Chico, we'll follow you and Suzanne to the hospital. I'm sure the trial can go on without us." Ed and Louie followed Chico to the parking lot.

Chico followed Suzanne as they put her in the ambulance. " Suz, this is it! " Chico thought as he wiped her forehead from the perspiration from the labor pains, holding her hand and kissing it to comfort her.

Suzanne looked at Chico. "Chico are you ok?" Suzanne asked as she held Chico's hand.

"Suz, I'm just remembering the last time I was with you in an ambulance. For a moment Suzanne, I had lost you. The paramedics brought you back to life. Now here we are again. We are going to be bringing back life again together with the baby." Chico, touched with emotion, started to shake.

The ambulance hurried into the emergency entrance at the hospital. The paramedics rushed Suzanne to the hospital emergency room and got her prepped for surgery.

"Hurry! She's about to give birth any minute," the doctors said, as they timed her contractions.

The hospital was in a buzz. People scurrying around about the commotion regarding the courthouse.

"Oh great, Chico, the press is going to film our birth of our baby," Suzanne moaned.

"Hey, please go away. I don't any press here!" Chico yelled.

A reporter hurried over to Chico and Suzanne.

"We were here for the birth of your baby, then we heard the judge dismissed the case saying something in regards to the testimony given by Suzanne and a written testimony done by Edward Brown. He then reviewed the testimonies. The judge and jury said it was an open and shut case in regards of it being an accident. Mando testified and emotionally said he had no intentions to kill her. The gun accidentally went off. They showed the surveillance footage from when you visited Mando, Suzanne," the reporter said.

"Oh Chico, I can't believe it!" Suzanne said.

"Well Suzanne are you ready?" the doctor said.

"Yeah Doc! I've been ready for weeks!" Suzanne and Chico headed towards the delivery area.

"Ohhh!" Suzanne said as she painfully held Chico's hands. Chico, behind her, rubbed her shoulders for comfort.

"Ready! I want you to push Suzanne. Give it all you got." Chico, behind her, helped support her back as Suzanne tried desperately to push.

"Oh God!" Suzanne, exhausted, caught her breath as she continued her breathing for her next push.

"Ok, Suzanne, I can see the baby's head. One more big push ought to do it!" the doctor said.

"Suz, are you ok?" Chico asked.

"Of course I'm ok Chico!"

Chico wiped the perspiration of her forehead. "You can do it, Suz!" Chico coached her.

"Ready, ok. Now I want you to do the same thing you did the last time but push harder!" the doctor said.

Suzanne looked at the doctor. "Are you nuts!" Suzanne relaxed and got her breathing together.

"OK, Suzanne, lets give it all we got!" the doctor said.

Suzanne got herself together and with one strong push pushed as much as she could.

Suzanne released from her pushing collapsed in Chico's arms, breathing ever so heavily.

Suddenly a cry came from the distance. "Oh God! " Suzanne cried, tears of joy as the sounds of an infant rang throughout the room. Chico, feeling relieved kissed Suzanne. "We did it!" they both said to each other. They embraced and kissed each other.

"Doc...?" Chico excitedly asked.

"Congratulations you two! You have a healthy baby girl!" The doctor shouted. The nurses cleaned the baby, measured, weighed it and then handed the baby to Suzanne.

"Oh, Chico, she's beautiful!" Suzanne said.

Chico leaned over towards Suzanne and the baby. "Suz, she is so precious!" Chico couldn't get over how small she was.

Suzanne looked up at Chico. Chico, touched with emotion, began to cry. Suzanne put her arm around his neck and leaned him closer to her and kissed him. "I love you Chico, thank you."

Suzanne was taken to her room. Chico went took off to the waiting room to tell Ed and Louie.


Chico ran into the waiting room to find Louie, Ed and several reporters.

"Ed, Louie!" Chico waved them over to him. "Did she have the baby, Chico?" Louie asked excitedly.

"We have a beautiful girl Ed, Louie!" Chico grinned.

"A girl! That's terrific, Chico!"

"Little Edina Louise Rodriguez to be precise!"

Ed and Louie were surprised and overwhelmed with joy.

"You two have meant so much to us during these past few months. It's an honor to name our daughter after our two best friends." Chico shook their hands and hugged them.

"When can we see the baby, Chico?" Louie asked.

"Come follow me. They might be getting her ready to be in the viewing area". Ed and Louie walked over to the viewing area as Chico strutted along.

Ed and Louie looked in the window. "Ah look Ed! She's a cutie!" Louie said. "She's got your eyes Chico," Louie said.

"Yeah and your bald head Louie!" Ed smiled.

"Let's congratulate the new mother," Ed said.

Ed, Louie and Chico headed back to the room where Suzanne was.

"Well hello mother!" Ed said smiling.

"Hi Ed, Louie" Suzanne said groggily.

"We won't keep you, we know you must be exhausted."

"Ed, you have no idea!"

"Honey, they have dismissed Mando's case seeing it was an accident, along with the testimony you and Ed gave," Chico said.

"That's funny I don't remember Ed giving a testimony?" Suzanne quietly said.

"Suz, I gave them a written testimony which they accepted after the excitement of you going into labor at the courtroom."

A knock appeared at the door. A doctor came in the room along with a police officer.

"Suzanne, there is someone here who wants to see you," the officer said.

"Hey Ed, why don't we leave them alone for a bit." Louie motioned Ed to leave the room. As Ed and Louie left the room, Mando entered the room following them.

"Hello old folks!" Mando smiled as he shook Ed and Louie's hand.

"Mando! I am so happy they found it was an accident!" Chico shook his hand and then embraced Mando.

"Hi Suzy, congratulations. I hear it was a girl. You and Chico will be wonderful parents to her. I know you must be proud." Mando reached over to Suzanne and hugged her.

"Listen Chico and Suzanne, I just want to apologize for what has been happening with us. Please forgive me." Mando hugged Chico.

"Mando, I forgive you brother, as much as I have caused trouble I ask for forgiveness also," Chico hugged Mando.

"All is forgiven, brother," Mando said as he patted his back.

"Mando, Chico, I have forgiven you two. Please forgive me for causing such a strain in your friendship with each other." Suzanne reached out her hands toward them

Chico took hold of Suzanne's and Mando's hand.

"Let's mark this day not only the day of our daughter Edina Louise's birth but a new start on friendship. May it last a life time."

                                  Chapter 3

Chico came back from the lab after having a few tests done at the hospital. Chico met Suzanne in her room. Eagerly, Chico helped Suzanne pack up a few things as they were getting ready to leave to the hospital.

"I think we have everything ready to go, Suz." Chico grabbed hold of her bag as they got ready to go when a nurse came into the room.

"Suzanne," wheeling the wheelchair over to Suzanne. "Are you all set to bring home Edina Louise?" The nurse helped Suzanne out of the bed and onto the wheelchair. Handing Edina Louise to Suzanne Chico followed them as she began to wheel Suzanne and Edina out of the room.

"I thank God that all of us are together" Suzanne thought as she held Edina. Chico, walking beside her, couldn't stop smiling. As he looked over to Suzanne and Edina, Chico couldn't stop checking up on her and their newborn baby, Edina Louise.

"Are you ok, Suzanne?" Chico leaned over getting a closer look at Edina Louise. "You make a wonderful mother by the way." Chico put his arm around her and began to kiss her.

"Yes, Chico, I'm doing fine. Our daughter is resting comfortably." Suzanne looked up at Chico, smiling.

Chico grinned with happiness. " I just can't believe that this little child is ours. Edina is a precious gift from God."

"Suz, Louie loaned us his car to take us home in. Ed and Louie are busy and are unable to be with us for your release from the hospital."

Chico and Suzanne were on their way out the door when Chico spotted Mando leaving the lab area.

"Hold on Suzanne I would like to speak to Mando." Chico rolled Suzanne to the waiting room then hustled over to Mando.

"Hey Mando!" Chico came up from behind, surprising him.

"Hi Chico, how's fatherhood?" Mando asked nervously as he shook Chico's hand.

"I love it! Have a cigar!" Chico handed him a cigar.

"Thanks Chico." Mando looked at the cigar reading the inscription. "It's a girl! Edina Louise Rodriguez".

Mando started to fidget around nervously.

"Are you ok, Mando?" Chico asked.

"Yeah Chico, why you ask?" Mando asked nervously.

"I thought I saw you leave the lab area." Chico, concerned, rested his hand on Mando's shoulder.

"Oh estoy muy bien, fino, Chico!" (Oh I'm fine, fine, Chico!) Mando said.

"Well I better get going. Della has helped rearrange an area in our apartment for our daughter," Chico smiled.

"Ok Chico, you'll make a good father by the way!" Mando smiled as he shook Chico's hand good bye.

Chico headed back to see Suzanne.

Mando sat down on a couch in the lab waiting room as thoughts of Edina Louise flooded his mind.

Mando looked up as he pondered his thoughts.

"God, I know I asked for forgiveness regarding causing any trouble between Chico and Suzanne. Somehow I just can't live without knowing the fact that Edina Louise could possibly be my daughter," Mando silently prayed.

"Es demasiado atrasado!" ( It's too late now!)

Mando lowered his head in his hands trying to shrug it off.

"Suzanne has already told me that they plan on raising the baby regardless who's the father."

Mando already started to feel abandoned.

"Well, now that the attempted murder charges against me are dropped. It's time I get my life in order again." Mando got his thoughts together as he headed over to the lab area for some tests he had to get done.

Chico, Suzanne and Edina made their way home. "Well mommy we're home," Chico smiled as he pulled into the garage.

Chico, getting out of the car, opened the door for Suzanne. Suzanne carefully got out of the car with Edina Louise in her arms.

"It's so good to be home Chico," Suzanne smiled as Chico opened up the apartment.

"Yes, it is Suzanne, it is great to have you two back where you belong here at home." Chico smiled and opened the door, walking in carrying her belongings leaving it wide open.

"Chico the apartment looks beautiful!" Suzanne smiled as she saw all the baby toys and furniture in the apartment. "Oh look at the bassinet!"

"We received several gifts from the Church after the news of the trial Suzanne," Chico took Edina Louise in his arms.

Chico sat down on a rocker that was donated from the church.

Rocking her gently, Chico watched Edina as she slowly fell asleep upon his chest.

"Edina mi amore this is a song your abuela sang to me asleep."

Chico quietly sang to Edina as she slowly fell asleep.

Toda noche, todo eldia, los angeles, vigilan sobre mi senor.

(All night, all day, Angels watching over me, my Lord.)

Toda noche, todo eldia, los angeles vigilan sobre mi.

(All night, all day, Angels watching over me.)

Toda noche, todo eldia, los angeles vigilan sobre mi.

(All night , all day, Angels watching over me .)

El sol se pone en el oeste. los angeles vigilan sobre mi, senor.

(Sun is a -setting in the west; Angels watching over me, my Lord)

Duerme, mi nino, torma un descanso, los angeles vigilan sobre mi

(Sleep my child, take a rest; Angels watching over me.)

Toda noche, todo eldia, los angeles vigilan sobre mi senior.

(All night, all day, Angels watching over me, my Lord.)

Toda noche, todo eldia, los angeles vigilian sobre mi senor.

( All night, all day,Angels watching over me , my Lord.)

Toda noche, todo eldia, los angeles vigilan sobre mi.

(All night, all day, Angels watching over me.)

"That was beautiful Chico". Suzanne gently brushed Edina's hair back as she slept in Chico's arms.

"Duerme mi nino. (Sleep my child). Suzanne gently rubbed the top of Edina's head as Chico continued rocking her.

Chico looked at Suzanne as he held her hand. "I can never thank you enough for giving birth to a beautiful child, Suzanne. I just can't imagine what you've gone through. Surviving the shooting then finding out you're pregnant."

Chico reached his hand to the back of her neck leaning her forward he began to kiss her. " I'm just so thankful you were still able to carry her especially where the bullet hit you."

Chico hugged Suzanne as he began to get upset. " I don't know what I'd do if I lost you and Edina." Chico wiped his eyes and looked up at Suzanne.

"Suz, I went to the lab prior to our leaving and had a DNA test done," Chico said quietly. "I have a feeling that was why Mando was there too. Your doctor suggested we get it done right away for Edina's sake."

Chico stroked Edina's hair as he kissed her. " Le amo tanto Edina" (I love you so much Edina)

Chico felt comfortable with Edina Louise, not worrying if she was his or Mando's.

Suzanne knelt down to be closer to Edina and to Chico.

"Suzanne, you know I will always love Edina whether she is mine or Mando's."

"Chico she is a part of us now. I'm sure Edina knows how much you love her," Suzanne kissed Chico passionately.

A knock came upon their door.

Suzanne released from their kiss. "Hmm, I wonder who could that be? Are we expecting any company Chico?" Suzanne wondered.

"Not that I know of Suz," Chico handed Edina over to Suzanne as he went to check to see who was at the door.

"Mando?! Come on in!" Chico smiled.

"Sorry about the clutter here in the apartment. We've been so overjoyed with Edina we haven't finished unpacking Suzanne's stuff."

Mando walked around the apartment that was full of baby gifts and flowers.

"That's ok Chico. Hi Suzy!" Mando waved at Suzy as he made his way around the apartment.

Mando walked over to see Edina. "Suz, Edina sure is an angel". Mando rubbed Edina's head.

"Would you like to hold her Mando?" Suzanne asked.

Mando looked at Edina and shrugged. "Suz, I don't know.. I would be afraid I'd drop her or something..." Mando said shyly.

"Here Mando, let me help you," Chico grasped Edina from Suzanne and handed her gently to Mando.

As Mando held Edina, he began to become emotional as he whispered. "Edina mi prequeno" (Edina my little Angel).

Mando gently rocked her as he tried to fight the tears from his eyes.

Chico and Suzanne looked on as Edina slept in Mando's arms.

"Pleasant dreams Edina." Mando kissed her forehead and handed her back to Suzanne.

"Hey Mando, seeing I'm taking time off to be with Suzanne and Edina Louise, maybe Ed could use your help if you want?" Chico asked

"Yeah Chico that would be great getting myself back to reality again. I think I heard Ed come in anyway. I'll see myself out brother".

Mando shook Chicos hand. Leaned over to Suzanne who was sitting on the rocker and kissed her cheek." Good night Suz". Chico looked on. Suzanne grasped Mandos hand as he said Good night to her.

"Bueno Noche Edina!" (Good Night Edina!)

Mando left their apartment and found Eds office light on. Mando walked into the office as Ed was getting a bottle from the mock set of bookcases.

"Hello old folks!" Mando sat on the desk as Ed sat on his chair doing a shot. Ed waved his hand at Mando as he placed his feet on the desk.

"Ed, Chico told me he was taking some time off for the baby and Suzanne. I would like to know if you can use my help?" Mando struggled to make his point.

"I need to get back on my feet is what I'm trying to say. Especially after the trial, Ed".

"Well Mando, I don't see no harm in that, Now that the trial is over, business is booming again!" Ed smiled raising his shot glass.

"Well when can I start Ed?" Mando asked.

"How about now Mando?" Ed asked hoping to convince him.

"Really?" Mando, relieved of Ed's reply, smiled.

"Yeah, get to work!" Ed pointed to the direction of the garage.

"Thanks Ed!" Mando took off and changed, getting ready on the work that was needed.

Chico and Suzanne left the apartment with Edina in a baby buggy.

"Ed! Suzanne and I are going to take Edina out to the park. We'll be back in an hour".

Chico and Suzanne were leaving the garage when they walked passed Mando. Chico stopped and looked at Mando." Mando, are you ok? You seemed troubled".

Mando got up from under the hood of the car he was working on as he wiped his eyes. "Yeah Chico, I'm ok".

Suzanne walked over to Mando as she put her arm around him. "Is there anything I can do Mando?"

Mando looked at Suzanne showing a sign of pity.

Suzanne was saddened to see how Mando was feeling as she hugged him. "It's going to be ok Mando, we'll get our lives back together. Honest!"

Chico looked on as Suzanne continued to hug Mando. Mando embraced her as tears swelled up in his eyes.

"I wish she would find out who is Edinas father". Mando thought.

The phone rang in Ed's office. Ed leaned out the doorway. "Suzanne, it's for you, sounds important".

Chico and Mando looked at each other wondering what the phone call was all about. Suzanne ran into the office and answered the phone.

"Hello? Hello Doctor". Suzanne said. Ed was about to get out of his chair and leave when Suzanne stopped him.

"Please, stay Ed. I'm nervous!" Suzanne begged.

"Is it the test results?" Ed whispered. Suzanne nodded her head yes.

Ed stood by her keeping an eye on the door to see if Chico and Mando were listening. After seeing Suzanne hide her head, he decided to close the door.

Suzanne listened to what the Doctor had to say as she was given the news.

".... According to the test results Suzanne... The babys DNA and the alleged fathers matches are accurate".

"Thank you Doctor". Suzanne hung up the phone.

Suzanne sat on Ed's desk pondered what the Doctor had said.

Ed was concerned about Suzanne. Ed put his arm around her shoulder leaning towards her comforted her.

"Suzanne if you want to talk about this privately, I'll always be here for you".

Suzanne embraced Ed. "Thank you Ed for not judging me. I'll reveal the results once I get my thoughts in order Ed. Please understand".

Ed put his arm around her and hugged her. " Suzanne, please take your time about this ok"

Although Suzanne decided to not tell Ed the outcome of the results, Suzanne left Eds office prepared for Chico and Mandos reaction.

Suzanne walked over to Chico and Mando as each of them slightly glance at her leaving Ed's office. They both wondered what the phone call was all about.

"I'm ready for our stroll Chico". Suzanne grasped the stroller gently rocking it.

"Who was on the phone Suz?" Chico asked as Ed left the office heading toward the stock room.

"It wasn't important Chico". Suzanne shrugged it off as Chico and her left the garage.

Ed, struggling with what the phone call was about, left the stock room watching Chico and Suzanne leave. Ed had a feeling Suzanne was about to make a decision that could change the relationship between her and Chico.

Ed looking up as he always did when he spoke to God. Leaning against the doorway to the stock room Ed pleaded with God.

"God, whatever decision Suzanne makes please don't let it effect little Edina Louise"

Ed stood there in a state of mixed emotions having a feeling something bad was going to happen.

Mando walked over to Ed as he nudged him. "Is everything ok Ed?" Ed rose up and wiped his hands.

"Yeah Mando, just a few details Suzanne had to take care with her doctor."

Mando stood there watching Chico and Suzanne walk out hand in hand with Edina in her stroller.

Mando questioned his thoughts that were flooding his mind. Mando was still struggling as he felt abandoned inside while he watched Edina with Chico.

"I don't think I can handle seeing Chico and Suzanne together with Edina".

"I know that Child is mine!" Mando was feeling edgy.

"Seeing Chico with MY child will drive me loco!" Mando paced around the car he was working on.

Mando threw his tools on the workbench while looking for some paper to write on. Locating a tablet of paper, Mando wrote a letter to Chico.

"Dear Chico and Suzanne,

Forgive me for not saying goodbye. Seeing you and Suzanne together along with Edina Louise just tears me apart. I suspect Suzanne knows who the father is and will not say. I have a gut feeling Chico that Edina is mine. I can't bear the thought that I'm here seeing you raise my daughter!

-Mando

Mando saddened stuck the letter underneath the apartment door, then left the garage.

Shortly after Chico and Suzanne returned.

"That was a nice stroll Chico. Edina seemed to enjoy herself," Suzanne said as they rolled the baby carriage into the garage.

"Hey Mando!" Chico called out as he looked around the garage for him. "I wonder where he went?"

"Chico there's a note under our door". Suzanne grabbed the note underneath the door and read it.

"Chico, Mando left!" Suzanne gasped.

"What?" Chico was in disbelief.

"Here Chico, this is what he wrote". Suzanne handed him the note.

Chico, fearing the worst, read the note.

"Suzanne, is this true?" Chico, moving to a corner, curiously looked at Suzanne as he motioned her over to him.

"Is what true Chico?" Suzanne asked heading towards Chico.

"About you knowing who Edinas father is?" Chico rubbed his eyes couldn't believe it.

It's possible Chico" Suzanne tried desperately to shrug it off.

"It's possible? Why are you trying to hide this from me Suzanne?" Chico continued to look at the words Mando had written indicating Suzannes possible knowledge of Edinas father.

Chico, with an irritated look in his eyes, grasped Suzannes shoulders looking straight into her eyes.

"Im not trying to hide anything from you Chico". Suzanne struggled to let herself loose of Chicos firm grasp.

"Chico, I don't anything bad to happen to us." Suzanne lowered her head, began to get upset.

Chico let go of her. His long slender fingers lifted her chin up and looked straight into her eyes with anger.

Chico being cautious of Suzannes answer asked with complete control.

"Well Suzanne, who is the father... me or Mando?" Chico tightly grasped her arms awaiting her answer.

Suzanne didn't like to see Chico in this state, especially after he caught her visiting Mando in jail. Suzanne was scared.

Suzanne began to feel faint from the angry look Chico kept giving her. "Chico, I want to tell you but I can't..."

"What do you mean you can't?" Chico said angrily as his long slender fingers pulled her closer to him.

Chico pulled Suzannes face up to his as tried to hide his anger in front of Ed. Suzanne could feel his hot angry breath coming from Chico. Suzanne struggled to say something just as Ed came out of his office looking for Chico.

"Ah Chico, I need you in my office," Ed said.

"Ed, I'll be there after Suzanne tells me the truth about Edina!" Chico looking over Ed's direction reacted sternly with his hands still grasped on Suzannes arms.

Ed walked over to Chico and tried to release him from Suzanne.

"Chico. " Ed concerned grasped his arm. "Come with me to the office now!" Ed pulled against Chicos arm letting go of Suzanne.

"We need to talk" Chico still angry watched Suzanne as Ed dragged him into his office.

"Sit down Chico" Ed pointed to his chair.

"Ed, what can be so important that kept me from knowing who is Edinas father?" Chico asked.

Ed stood by the door as he shut it closed. " Chico I was with her when she received her phone call." Ed sat down on the desk.

"So that's why you closed the door after she came into your office huh Ed?" Chico asked.

"Yes Chico, I felt it was for her own good". Ed said.

"Well Ed, then who is the father?" Chico leaned forward as he sat on the chair.

"I'm sorry Chico, Suzanne never told me. After she received her response from her Doctor she was silent. She needed time to think about it Chico". Ed said.

"God Ed, this is killing me! This could only mean one thing. That Edina.... Shes not my daughter".

Chicos eyes began to swell up with tears, confused and saddened Chico messed with his hair.

"I want so much to be a family with Suzanne and Edina Ed". Chico slumped down on the chair fearing his relationship with Suzanne was over.

"What did Mando say in his letter Chico?" Ed asked.

"Mando figured the baby was his and couldn't bear the thought of seeing us raise his daughter Ed." Chico showed Ed the note.

Ed rubbed his mustache. "Gee Chico that's too bad".

"Ed I'm planning on asking Suzanne to marry me tonight. I want Suzanne and I to be a real family with Edina Louise" Chico said.

"Oh I don't know Chico, if Mando finds out what youre going to do he might try to do something drastic again". Ed said.

"You and Suzanne were lucky the last time you and Mando got into a scuffle". Ed opened up the cash register and grabbed his shot glass.

"Chico you better be careful" Ed said." Think of Edina Louise before you do anything drastic". Ed poured himself a shot.

" Don't worry Ed" Chico rose up off the chair.

Ed and Chico embraced. "I know this has to be rough on you Chico. Please for Edinas sake try to make this work if this does happen to be Mandos child". Ed embraced Chicos arm.

"Besides you and I have been so close these few years. I consider Edina Louise as my own granddaughter Chico".

"I know Ed, I just can't get the vision of finding him in bed with her out of my mind. Especially after what he did with her," Chico said.

"Are you referring to Suzannes testimony about the sex that they were involved in?" Ed asked.

Chico began to get angry." How could she have not known it wasn't me in our bed with her!" Chico fiercely kicked the garbage can over.

"Chico it's over and done with!' Ed bent over to pick up the trash that fell out of the can.

"Yeah, I know it's over and done with Ed. Still what if Suzanne isn't really over Mando?" Chico still couldn't face the fact that Mando was with Suzanne while he was gone.

"Chico, that's all in the past. You know Suzanne loves you." Ed tried to reason with Chico.

"How do you know she was just trying to keep me so she wouldn't be alone throughout her pregnancy?" Chico angrily said.

Chico couldn't control his emotions regarding Suzanne and Mando.

"You know what Ed? I 'm going to tell Suzanne to forget about us so Mando and her can go on with their lives." Chico pointed his finger at Ed.

"You can't be serious! Chico youre not thinking straight". Ed said as he tried to stop Chico from leaving the office.

Chico ran out of the office looking for Suzanne.

"Suzanne, Suzanne, could you come out here please?" Chico agitated paced the floor.

Suzanne opened the door of their apartment and walked towards Chico.

"Yes Chico?" Suzanne came up to him.

"Suzanne...I think we shouldn't be..."Chico said angrily.

Ed went between Chico and Suzanne. "Chico, before you continue I think Suzanne should speak first."

"Why Ed, what do you know that I dont?" Chico said angrily.

"What's going on?" Suzanne looked at both Ed and Chico confused.

Chico folded his arms and looked as her. "Well Suz, who is Edinas father? Is she my daughter?" Chico asked.

Suzanne looked at Ed as she sat down on the stool.

Chico stood directly in front of her waiting for a response.

"Chico before you have Suzanne speak, I think you should settle down". Ed tried to calm Chico down.

Chico grabbed another stool sitting beside her. Chico took a slow deep breath. "Ok, I'm listening Suzanne." Chico determined to get an answer sat down facing Suzanne.

Suzanne placed her hand on his and began to get upset.

"Chico the phone call I received earlier today was the doctor giving me the results about Edinas father...."

"It's Mandos isn't it?" Chico got up and paced the floor. Suzanne watched him patrol around her.

Suzanne feared looking at Chico " Chico... Edina is..."

The payphone rang...." I'll get it Chico". Ed ran to the phone.

"Well? Am I Edinas father?" Chico questioned her right in her face.

"Yes Chico...You are Edinas father". Suzanne covering her eyes cried out of relief.

"I never meant to hurt anyone Chico". Chico stopped his footing as he received the news.

"I am Edina Louises father?" Chico relieved from hearing the results, held Suzanne close and kissed her passionately.

Suzanne felt the release of the pressures she relaxed in Chicos arms while welcoming Chicos kiss.

Feeling his arms wrap around Suzanne. Chico spoke into her ear." God , I'm so sorry for being so angry Suzanne. I don't think I could of taken much more of this".

Chico stood tall and shouted. "SOY PADRE DE EDINAS!" (I am Edinas father!)

Smiling Chico bent down and kissed her. " I love you Suzanne." Chico relieved wiped the tears from her eyes.

"I love you too Chico". Suzanne buried her head in Chicos shoulder as they embraced.

"Ah Suz" Ed walked up between Chico and Suzanne as he put his hand on her shoulder.

"Suzanne that was the lab at the hospital. They have reason to believe that the tests where tampered with because of all the tests" Ed said.

Suzanne rose her head off of Chicos shoulder." Ed, what are you saying?"

"Chico, they need you and Mando to take some more tests to verify the results again". Ed said sadly

"So theyre saying I may not be the father?" Chico questioned.

Ed put his hand on Chicos shoulder. "It's possible Chico, Im afraid to say".

Suzanne came closer to hug Chico. Chico stunned with the tampered results tried to keep his emotions in control, yet he didn't want to embrace her.

"Chico!" Suzanne wrapped her arms around him as she buried her head on his shoulder Suzanne started to cry.

As Chico felt the tears of Suzanne run down his shoulder he began to feel saddened for what he and Suzanne were going through.

"Suzanne, I'm so sorry be being so angry. I just want us to go on with our lives."

"I want us to be together Chico". Suzanne embraced Chico wishing Edinas situation would be over with.

"Now that Mando has left our lives, we need to start a new beginning with Edina". Chico thought as he hugged Suzanne walking into their apartment.

Suzanne picked up Edina and rocked her. Chico sat down on the couch and leaned his head back after a stressful day.

Chico thought it over about Suzanne and his relationship with her as he rose out of the couch.

"Here Edina let your Mom and Dad have a few minutes with each other". Chico took hold of Edina from Suzanne and placed her in her bassinet.

Chico smiled taking hold of Suzannes hand." Suzanne please sit with me on the couch". Chico patted on the couch indicating where to have Suzanne sit.

As Suzanne sat down Chico leaned over embracing her.

"You know Suzanne, We've been through a lot together lately. I'm surprised that you've been crazy enough to put up with me". Chico smiled as he rubbed her tear stained cheek.

"Chico, you know deep down you mean so much to me to ever let me go". Suzanne smiled as she gently place her hand on his face rubbing his mustache ever so gently.

"Ill never forget the day when I first pulled in the garage. You were so cute, so charming, the perfect gentlemen Chico". Suzanne felt the warmth his side burns against her hand.

"I couldn't get over how cute you looked as you leaned over cleaning my windshield". Suzanne sighed as she smiled at him.

"Remember when I drove you around Los Angeles? I was hoping that day would never end". Chico smiled lifted Suzannes hand kissed it.

With one knee at a time Chico eased his way to the floor. Holding Suzannes hand as he lightly kissed each finger.

"Hagamos que ultima especial del dia que un rato la vida nosotros?' " (Lets make that special day last a lifetime shall we?)

Chico kissed her hand slowly as he looked into her eyes. Suzanne melted every time he spoke to her in Spanish. Looking into Chicos browns eyes she became lost in them.

Chico reached into his jacket pocket taking out a small box. Chico quietly opened the box. One hand held hers and the other presented it to Suzanne.

"Suzanne will you marry me?" Chico choked with emotion held her hand.

"Oh my God Chico!" Suzanne surprised cried tears of joy. Wiping her eyes as she kissed him. "Yes! Let nothing come between us again!"

With Suzannes hand shaking from excitement. Chico placed the ring on her finger.

Suzanne embraced Chico as their lips met together. Suzanne welcomed Chicos firmer kiss as she felt the tip of his tongue enter her awaiting mouth. Chico released as he kissed her hand.

"Its beautiful Chico!" Suzanne raised her hand against the light as it glistened.

"This was my mothers ring Suzanne. She gave it to me knowing someday I would find a girl like her".

Chico and Suzanne kissed again. Chico smiled motioned her to follow him towards there bed.

Chico and Suzanne began to make love leaving their fears and troubles behind them.

After a restless sleep Chico woke up knowing that now things were going to different again with Mando. Staring at the ceiling Chico thought his ever-changing friendship with Mando.

Chico sat up on the bed, lowered his head in prayer, silently praying. "Mando where ever you are. What ever you are doing? Please don't interfere with my love for Suzanne and Edina Louise". Chico rubbed his eyes form little bit of Sleep he had after a restless sleep.

Chico laid back and rolled over gently kissing Suzanne." Good morning Suzanne". Chico smiled.

Suzanne turned over facing Chico. As she brushed Chicos hair while wrapping her arms around him.

"Chico I would like to be with you at the hospital when you have your DNA test done again. I would like us to go through this together" Suzanne rubbed her index finger against Chicos mustache.

"I agree with you Suzanne, Ill be thankful when this test is finally over and done with. You that's not stopping us to see Reverend Bemis about planning our wedding". Chico smiling embraced her.

"I agree, Reverend Bemis will be happy I'm sure". Suzanne smiled as she rose up to the side of the bed. Chico laid there on the bed decided to stretch his long arms and legs out. As Chico rose up he embraced Suzanne. " Mami linda. I long for much happiness us and our bebe Edina Louise".

Chico and Suzanne gathered Edinas baby bag headed over to the church.

Chico walked into the church and spotted Reverend Bemis dusting hymnals. Chico came up from behind Reverend Bemis and nudged him.

"Well good morning Chico! Nice to see you". Reverend Bemis smiled as he shook Chicos hand.

"Reverend Bemis I would like you to meet my girl Suzanne". Chico hugged Suzanne as he looked at Edina. Reverend Bemis embraced her. " And who is this darling little baby?" Reverend Bemis leaned over to get a closer look at Edina.

"This is our daughter Edina Louise Rodriguez Reverend". Chico and Suzanne looked at each other.

"Ah yes Chico, Suzanne, I recall seeing the coverage Suzannes stay in the Hospital shortly after the trial". Reverend Bemis tickled Edinas feet, making her smile.

"Reverend, seeing now that all the chaos is over, Suzanne and I would like to get married". Chico smiled.

"Chico, Suzanne, married? Congratulations!" Reverend Bemis joyously shook hands with Chico and hugged Suzanne.

"A spring wedding! It's a nice time of year!" Reverend Bemis raised his hands with glee.

"No Rev, as soon as possible". Chico said as he followed Reverend Bemis to his office.

Reverend Bemis looked at his calendar. "I have an opening on the first Saturday of next month Chico and Suzanne" Reverend flipped through his calendar. "Chico, why the rush?" Reverend Bemis asked.

"We want to go on with our lived Reverend Bemis. Make it legal." Chico said.

"We've been through so much together, Reverend." Suzanne said.

Suzanne rested her hand on Chicos as she looked at him." Reverend I would like that day to special not just for Chico and I but for Edina as well."

Chico smiled as he rested his hand on her arm. "Suzanne what do you have in mind?'

"I think it would be a special day for all of us if we could include Edinas baptism along with the wedding ceremony." Suzanne smiled at Chico.

"Ah Mami, that would be beautiful!" Chico leaned over to Suzanne kissing her.

"Yes Suzanne, I understand, a new life for a new beginning!" Reverend Bemis smiled as he took hold of Edina.

Chico seemed distant suddenly as Reverend Bemis noticed.

"Chico my son, can I ask you a personal question?"

"Sure Rev, what's up?" Chico asked.

"Are you having any sort of trouble with Mando now that he has been released from jail?" Reverend Bemis wondered.

Chico sat there thinking of Mandos outburst in there bedroom, and at the jail cell, then leaving town.

Suzanne rested her hand on Chicos. "No Reverend not at the moment".

Reverend Bemis looked confused.

"Rev, Mando left town after he thought he was Edinas father. He couldn't bare the thought that I was raising her". Chico leaned over held his head.

"Well Chico my son, are you the father of Edina?" Reverend Bemis asked.

Chico rose his head, leaning forward on Reverend Bemiss desk. "Rev, I know I am, I can feel it in my heart. Although we have to wait till for the tests results again because of the press."

"You know Chico, if you not Edinas father you'll have to take adoption proceedings against Mando" Reverend Bemis said." I'm afraid Chico, that could get ugly".

"I know Rev, I just hope I don't have to face him in court again, but if I have to, to claim my daughter I will !" Chico rose up off his chair and became angry.

Suzanne had him sit down. "Chico please, not in front of Reverend Bemis". Suzanne held his arm holding him back.

Reverend Bemis walked over to Chico and Suzanne as he put his arms on both Chicos and Suzannes shoulders. "Chico, Suzanne, I understand, waiting and knowing the outcome of this can be devastating".

"Please let's schedule this happy event and plan for your wedding and baptismal shall we." Suzanne and Chico chose the first Saturday available Reverend Bemis had.

"Thank you Rev, thank you for helping us out" Chico and Suzanne embraced Reverend Bemis then left to go back home.

As Chico and Suzanne arrived home they spotted Della near her shop. "Chico, Suzanne" Della waved them over. "Congratulations a baby girl! You two must be so proud" Della hugged Chico and Suzanne.

"I see that they let that Mando fella go". Della asked.

"Yeah Della, after his release he was here looking for work then split because he didn't like me raising Edina Louise who he claims is his own daughter". Chico said.

"Well, hopefully that's a good sign Chico, If it wasn't meant to be then he did the best thing and went about his life somewhere else." Della smiled.

"Yeah, with us starting our lives over again we are planning our future now". Chico smiled.

"Really? What have you to got planned already?" Della asked.

Chico put his arm around Suzanne and raised her left hand.

"Well look at this? What a surprise! Congratulations!" Della hugged Suzanne and Chico.

"We got some planning to do!" Della wandered around nervously.

"Ill cater the dinner for you two and your guests. Just let me know how many will be attending".

"Della, we don't want a big wedding. Just members of the family and our dear friends".

"I understand Suzanne. Where is your family from?" Della asked.

"My family is from the Midwest". Suzanne said sadly.

"That's too far away to be from family Suzanne. What brought you here in the first place?" Della wondered.

"I was here on business and stopped here needing some gas."

"Well Suzanne, you and I will have to get together and find you a wedding dress". Della smiled.

Chico hugged Suzanne showing a face of eagerness. Suzanne became saddened hiding her face on Chicos shoulder.

Chico wondered what was the matter. " Suzanne is everything alright?" Della asked.

"Yes, Suzanne what's wrong?" Chico comforted her.

"Della, Chico, it's just that I've always wanted to have a nice Church wedding wearing a long white gown" Suzanne choked up.

Chico reached over to Suzanne and hugged her." Suz, what ever your going to wear. I'm sure I'm going to love it!"

Suzanne pulled away from Chico. "Chico, you just don't understand. I love you dearly. I know we were intimate with each other".

Suzanne wiped her eyes as she continued crying. Chico tried to make out what Suzanne was saying through her tears.

"With me being pregnant with Edina and now not knowing who the father is. I feel I just can't wear a traditional white gown as much as I liked to". Suzanne felt disappointed.

"Suzanne, don't feel that our love for each other is spoiled now that you got pregnant by accident. If it was meant to be it was meant to be". Chico embraced her.

Chico held her close to him. "Don't feel ashamed of your pregnancy". Chico held her chin and kissed her." I love you very much with or without a child".

Della made a list of things to do for the wedding." Suzanne, there are very pretty Ivory dresses available to wear, hon. Although I do understand what youre saying."

Della rubbed Suzannes back."Edina was a gift from God Suzanne".

"Where did that Mando fella go anyway?" Della asked.

"I have no idea I haven't seen him since he left. All I know he was at the hospital when we had to do the tests over again Della".

"Well let's not worry about that, we have a wedding to get ready for!" Della smiled.

Ed stepped out of his office looking for Chico." Chico!

Ed motioned him to his office. "Excuse me Della!" Chico hustled over to his office.

"Chico, a doctor called wants you to go to this clinic at this address and have some tests done regarding Edina. He said it should be quick," Ed said showing him the address.

"Isn't it too late in the day to do that?" Chico wondered.

"I agree Chico, I asked the same question and they are staying open till your tests are done. They are aware of your situation reguarding Mando and you". Ed said.

Chico glanced at the note. "It looks fishy to me Ed, but if it will get this crap over with. I'll supposed I'll go now" Chico looked at the scheduled time. "Why does it have to be at this time of day? By the time I get there, who knows what hour of the night we'll be arriving back home?" Chico wondered.

"Chico let me see take a look at that address" Della looked at the street address on the paper. "Why that's way across town Chico. You better be careful" Della handed him back the paper.

"Hey Chico, how about I go with you, that way it wont be so bad of a ride over there," Ed said convincingly.

"Sure Ed, you can keep me awake on the ride back" Chico smiled.

"Gee Chico, I was hoping you'd do the same to me!" Ed grumped.

"I'm going to tell Suzanne where we are going" Chico hustled over to the apartment.

"Suzanne" Chico walked in as Suzanne was nursing Edina.

"Listen Hon, Ed and I are going across town to have some more tests done. I'll probably will be home late". Chico hugged her.

"Le amo (I love you) Suzanne. Le amo (I love you) Edina." Chico kissed Suzanne and Edina good bye.

"I love you too Chico" Suzanne kissed Chico good bye.

Suzanne sitting on her bed finished nursing Edina then placed her in bed. "I'll miss you Chico, hurry back" Suzanne said as she got ready for bed.

Suzanne kissed Edina good night and crawled into bed. "Buenoas Noches mi bebe Edina" Suzanne lying in bed silently prayed.

"Thank you for giving me Chico and Edina God. I'm also very grateful for friends like Ed, Louie, Reverend Bemis, and Della. Please give Mando the strength to carry on as he goes about his renewed freedom. Amen" Suzanne drifted off to sleep.

Mando had a desire to visit Chico again even though he had mentioned he couldn't bear seeing him with Edina Louise. Mando cruised around the neighborhood several times debating whether he should stop by at the garage or not.

Being this late in the evening he had a feeling the garage was closed. "If only I could just reason with Chico about Edina maybe they would understand". Mando thought.

Mando pulled into the alleyway and decided he would walk over to the garage entrance. Mando looked in the window by the door.

"The light is still on, maybe Chico is still up?" Mando tried to look around the window spotting any sign of life.

"I don't see anyone" Mando jiggled the door hoping someone would hear him. "Let's see if I still have that key that Ed gave me?" Mando dug into his pockets finding little change, a few receipts and a few keys. " Ah there you are!" Mando put his key into the lock and opened the door.

"Hey Chico, Ed!" Mando quietly said as he realized the hour of the night." I don't see any sign of Chico or Ed here as well as there tow truck. I wonder if they are gone for the evening?" Mando looked around the garage.

Mando looked over to the apartment and thought about knocking at their door seeing if Suzanne was home. " No, I don't want to wake up Suzanne just to see her and Edina". Mando was about to knock on the door, as he brushed the side of the door with his hand then pulled back.

Mando decided to sit down by the apartment door and wait for Chico and Ed. As he grew tired of waiting he leaned against the door only to realize that the door was slightly ajar, not completely closed.

"What the...." Mando quickly got up as he lost his balance. Mando quickly closed the door part way.

Mando stood there as he opened the door realizing his chances to see Edina Louise again. "Edina!" Mando smiled as he silently crept in and looked at Edina. " Edina Louise mi bebe". Mando whispered as Edina slept soundly.

Mando carefully looked around to see if Suzanne was sound asleep. Mando gently and carefully pick up Edina holding her up to his chest. Edina began to stir a little. "Shh, Edina, it's ok. Your daddys here". Mando quietly whispered as he heard Suzanne begin to say something.

"Chico? Youre back already!" Suzanne tired barely awake.

" Shh, Suzanne". Mando whispered as he began to have that feeling he had once before with her. Laying Edina down in her bassinet he eyed Suzanne in response on wanting her.

Mando watching Suzanne carefully quietly removed his clothing and crawled into bed with her. "Chico". Suzanne turned over resting her arm around Mando.

Mando shocked at Suzannes sudden response to his arrival turned over to her and began to kiss her.

Suzanne welcomed him as the two of them began to have intercourse. There lips never separated till Suzanne spoke. " Chico, I missed you". Suzanne surrounded by darkness gave into Mandos pleasure as she took every inch of him. As Mando released he kissed her saying good night.

"Good night Suzanne" Mando whispered. " Good night Chico" Suzanne whispered. Mando carefully rolled over as he watched Suzanne turn over drifting deeply back to sleep.

Mando carefully got dressed and walked over to Edina. "Buenos Noches mi bebe Edina Louise". (Good night my baby Edina Louise). Mando whispered.

Looking back at Edina and Suzanne, Mando headed out the door. Mando pondered his sudden feelings .

"NO, I cant!" Mando struggled as he turned around looking at Edina. "Yet I may never see mi bebe again. If by any chance I run into Chico and he wants no part of me in her life".

Mando turned around towards Edina and gently picked her up. "I'm sorry I have to do this Edina. I know your mother will miss you terribly ...Still you'll be with your father". Mando gently picked up Edinas diaper bag and carried her out of the apartment.

Mando quietly closed the apartment door and locked it as he made his way out. Edina started to stir. " Shh Edina, where going to be safe now". Mando left the garage in hurry as he heard the rumble of Ed's tow truck coming down the road arriving back at the clinic.

"Well Ed, thanks for coming with me. The waiting and the drive back was ridiculous!" Chico stretched his back and yawned.

" I cant believe the waiting we had at the clinic Chico. They acted like they knew nothing about it". Ed rubbed his eyes. "Thanks for driving Chico, I don't think I could handled it on the way back". Ed yawned.

"No problem Ed, see you in the morning". Chico unlocked the apartment door and made his way inside.

"Suzanne, I'm back" Chico whispered. Suzanne barely awake turned over to Chico. "You left again? Where did you go?"

Chico went to Check on Edina." Buenos Noches Edina Louise". (Good night Edina Louise)

Chico looked into the bassinet and noticed it was empty." Suz, Where is Edina?" Chico wondered.

"What?" Suzanne rose up quickly, as she tiredly tried to comprehend what he said. "Chico, weren't you here a short time ago?" Suzanne asked.

" No. Why?" Chico sat on the bed looked at Suzanne.

Suzanne started to shake from the fear of remember what happened with her and Mando a while back.

"Oh God, please tell me this isn't happening again!" Suzanne cried and buried her head in her hands.

"What Suzanne. What's going on? Where's Edina?" Chico sat on the bed concerned holding her hand.

"Chico, I was sleeping and I felt your side of the bed move. I thought you had come home. I turned over to embrace you..." Suzanne looked at Chico, as he became stunned at what she was saying.

"Are you saying there was someone in my bed with you?" Chico became angry trying to make sense of what was happening. Suzanne winced at Chicos anger buried her head on his chest.

Chico pulled Suzanne back. "Tell me exactly what happen Suz". Chico questioned.

"Chico, I was sleeping and I felt the bed move. I embraced who I thought was you. I felt what I thought was your kiss and then... " Suzanne shied away.

"Then what Suzanne?" Chico looking at her, wanting to know.

" Chico..." Suzannes tears streamed down her cheeks as she covered her mouth in shock.

"No..... Don't tell me...." Chico feared that Mando was back. Suzanne wondered as she struggled. "How could anyone get in?" Suzanne shivered in fear.

"Mando was here! He not only was in bed with you again, but he kidnapped Edina!" Chico slumped on the floor laid his head on the bed shivered in fear as he wept.

Chico raised his head as tears streamed down his face screaming." Porque Dios! Que nos tienen hechos para mercer este dolor!" (Why, God! What have we done to deserve such pain!)

Suzanne knelt down beside him as she embraced Chico, together they wept." Suzanne, I know you know you had nothing to do with this. Mando so badly wants to be a part of your life again and thinks Edina is his daughter". Chico rose up.

"I'm going to call the police, please wait here". Chico hurried out the apartment, ran to the office and slammed the door behind him.

Ed yelling opened his door from upstairs." What's going on down there!" Ed hurried down the stairs making his way to the office as Chico headed out of the office waiting for the police by front door. "Chico! I heard you screaming! What's the matter?"

"Ed, its Mando. He showed up here while we were gone. He, he snuck into bed with Suzanne and...." Chico cried and embraced Ed.

Ed released as he looked at Chico. "You mean he slept with her again? How did he get in..." Ed covered his mouth after he realizing what happened. " Oh no, I gave him a key to the garage. Chico, I thought I could trust him again!" Ed covered his head. "Chico, I'm so sorry. I had no idea".

Chico embraced Ed. "Ed, we all thought we could trust him" Chico rose his head. "Ed, he's taken Edina. She's been kidnapped". Chico barely said." What? How could he have done such a thing!?" Ed was crushed.

Suddenly the sound of sirens approached the garage. "The cops are here!" Chico hurried over to the door. "Ed please stay with Suzanne till they need her ok?" Chico yelled as he hurried over to the police officers.

Ed opened the apartment door only to find Suzanne crying as she buried her head in Edinas baby blanket rocking in the rocker.

"Suzanne, I'm so sorry". Ed leaned to her as she looked up at him. "Oh God Ed, I just can't figure Mando out. Why would God allow this to happen to us?" Suzanne cried on Ed's shoulder.

"Suzanne, please don't lose faith. We will find the answers some how." Chico walked into the apartment along with a couple officers. Chico leaned to Suzanne as he rubbed her back.

Suzanne looked up as police officers approached her. "My Baby! My Baby!" Suzanne cried as she rocked back and forth.

"Are you Edina Louises Mother?" The officer asked. Suzanne shook her head yes.

The officer placed his hand on her wrist to calm Suzanne down. "Can you explain to us what happened Maam?" The police officer asked.

Suzanne explained to the officer what happened as Chico held her. "... After he pretended to be Chico he must of snuck out with Edina Louise". Another police officer approached Suzanne giving her a tissue. " Did he have any intentions of wanting your daughter Suzanne, Chico?" The officer asked.

"Officer, he left us a note indicating he assumed Edina was his". Chico showed the officer the note.

"I'd like to keep this Mr. Rodriguez. Also any pictures of her will be grateful". The officer asked.

"Please go ahead, anything to bring back our daughter". Chico was shook up with emotion.

Another officer approached Suzanne." We will do everything we can to bring your daughter back to you safely" the officer reassured Suzanne as they left in pursuit of finding Edina Louise and Mando.

Suzanne motioned Chico closer to her as he crouched down to her. Suzanne wrapped her arm around Chico being ever so close to him. Suzanne cried as Chico hugged her.

Sadden with Edina Louise disappearances, Suzanne made a decision she never thought she would ever have to make. "Chico, please forgive me for what I'm about to say... I, I think we should call off the wedding till we know what has happened to Edina Louise".

Chico realizing the out come embraced her. "Oh Suz, I understand". Chico cried. "We will get through this and then we will be married. Please don't lose hope". Chico gently rocked her as both tried not to think of what could of happened to Edina Louise.

Mando hurriedly drove to his place as he held Edina. Mando pulled into the driveway looking nervously around to see if anyone would see him come in with a baby.

"Edina sweetheart, we are home at last!" Mando rushed into his apartment so no one could hear him and Edina." Here Edina, bonita lay here and rest". Mando laid her in a crib he purchased upon the news of her birth.

Mando watched as Edina slept, the wind hit jerking the window scaring Edina. She began to cry. "Edina! Edina! It's alright your daddys here". Mando picked her up and rocked her gently.

Mando dug into the bag and found some formula for Edina to heat up. As it was heating up he began to plan his future with Edina and possibly Suzanne.

"I know mi bebe Edina Louise is my child, If I am certain that it is true from the tests results. Edina, Suzanne and I can be a family once again". Mando rose up. "If she isn't though and turns out to be Chicos. Then I'll have to find anyway possible to keep her".

Mando picked up Edina as he started to feed her. Daydreaming of being a family with Suzanne and Edina Louise as he fed her.

As Mando burped her he heard a knock on the door of his apartment." God! Who could that be?!" Mando nervously put Edina down in her crib and locked the door to the bedroom he placed her in.

Mando looked through the peep hole on the door." Damn! How could they have found out already?" Mando quickly opened the door." Hello, hello officer". Mando nervously said.

"May we come in?" Said the officer. " Yes, yes, officer. What can I do for you?" Mando said.

"Well sir, there's a report out of a missing baby". The officer did not recognize Mando since he grew out his hair and sported a beard since his arrest of Suzannes shooting.

"Do you recognize this man?" The officer showed Mando an old picture of him clean-shaven.

"No officer". Mando said nervously. The officer looked at Mando again. "Are you sure sir?" asked the police officer.

"No, I dont recognize the person on the picture. You know we all look a like. Maybe it was my mother". Mando kidded with the officer.

The officer eased up on Mando." Well if you have any information regarding this suspect sir. Please call us immediately". Mando opened the door and let the officer out.

"Ok, ok, Officer I will"

Mando quickly closed the door and ran towards Edina Louise. "Edina, we have to think of something fast. I don't want to lose you!"

Mando lay Edina in her crib as Mando got ready bed. Mando lay there thinking of his plans for him and Edina. Mando rose out of bed and wrote a letter to Chico.

Dear Chico,

Be advised that Edina is resting comfortably were she belongs, with me Edinas father! You need not worry anymore Chico, she is in good hands. She will be complete once her mother decides to be a part of OUR lives. Until then you will never see her again for I am her father and don't want you to interfere with her life!" - Mando

Mando placed the letter in an envelope and addressed it to Chico.

Chico and Suzanne struggled with the fact that they may never see Edina ever again.

"Well...damn! I just can't believe that Edina isn't here with us!" Chico paced the floor hearing Ed moan about the bills he received in the mail. Chico headed out towards Ed. "Chico, there is something here for you. I doesn't have a return address on it though". Ed handed Chico the envelope marked with his name on it. Chico looked at the envelope against the light above him.

"This is strange. What could this be all about?" Chico tore up the envelope and opened up the letter. Fearing what he read in the letter Chico yelled at the top of his lungs.

"ESTE NO PUEDE SER EL HAPPENING! MANDO PORQUE!" (THIS CAN'T BE HAPPENING! MANDO WHY!)


After hearing Chico scream Suzanne and Ed headed over towards Chicos direction wondering what happened.

"What happened?" Suzanne and Ed yelled in unison. Chico showed them both the letters he received from Mando.

"Oh my God, I can't believe this. He wants me to be with him in order for me, us to get our daughter back!"

Chico walked away from Suzanne as he struggled to think about what she said and what was written in the letter.

"Suzanne, maybe he's right". Chico feared. "Maybe Mando is Edina Louises father?" Chico brushed his hair back with his hand knelt down to the ground worried he may never see Edina Louise again and now the possibility of losing Suzanne.

"Chico, please don't say such a thing!" Suzanne knelt down towards Chico. "Edina has to be your daughter. I couldn't bear the thought of raising her without you!" Suzanne embraced Chico looking into his eyes.

Tears streamed down Chicos face as he struggled to except the fact that Edina might not be his very own. Chico feeling disappointed rose up and pulled away from Suzanne trying not to look at her.

"Suzanne I have to face reality if it is true about Mando possibly being her father. If I have to I must. After all we've been through I hate to have to see you leave my life too".

Suzanne feared the worst of what was to come involving Mando.

"If the only way to see my daughter is by going back to Mando, he's got another think coming!"

Suzanne rubbed her eyes tried to clear her head of all the horrifying situations that effected her life since she arrived here. Suzanne decided to go to Reverend Bemiss Church and spend some time with God. Suzanne quietly opened the rickety old door to the Church as she found her way into the chapel. Pulling out the pew kneeler Suzanne knelt down as she began to plead with God about her feelings towards Chico, Edina Louise and Mando.

"Father, I know there is a reason for what has taken place in my life lately". Suzanne struggled in prayer as she began to feel frustrated about the anger that was inside her.

"I would like Chico and I to be together forever Father, Yet the gift that has brought Chico and I closer now has been taken away from us". Suzanne pleaded began to cry.

Suzanne continued in prayer as she crouched down closer to the pew railing.

A hand approached her from behind, forcibly pulling her back. Suzanne, frightened, felt a warm hand cover her mouth to keep her from speaking. "Come with me" whispered the voice gently in her ear. Suzanne tried to turn her head to see who it was trying to keep her from speaking, yet it's grip was too strongly embraced upon her to move.

Suzanne struggled to move her head as she suddenly became blinded by what was wrapped around her eyes. Struggling to see and make sense of what was happening. Suzanne began to notice a familiar scent of a baby as her eyes were covered. "Edina?" Suzanne quietly said as she was being pulled out of the pew. Was the scent coming from what was wrapped around her eyes? Suzanne thought as she was being pulled away, not knowing where she was heading.

Hearing a voice come from a distance Suzanne was pushed aside and told to be quiet.

"Shh, no talking!" As the voice grabbed her hands and bound them together. Fear came upon Suzanne as she thought what might happen to her and who was doing this to her.

"What do you want from me?" Suzanne whispered. A warm hand covered her mouth as she was told to be quiet again. "Quiet! We are leaving now". Suzanne was pushed forward as she heard the old rickety door open up. Seconds of silence came before she was pushed forward indicating to go outside.

As a car door opened up, a hand held her head as she was indicated to go inside the car. The car door shut and then opened up from the other side. Suzanne began to hear the roar of the engine start and the tires squeal. From the force of the acceleration Suzanne was pulled back further into the back seat.

"What is going on!" Suzanne cried still struggling to make out the situation she was in." Where are you taking me!" Suzanne felt the rush of speed push against her body as the car turned a sharp corner then stopped real fast. Suzanne was thrust against the door by the force of the ride.

Her door opened up as Suzanne fell back from the force of the opening. Still blindfolded Suzanne was taken out of the car and lead inside a building. Hearing the jingle of keys she heard the sound of a door opening. Suzanne was lead through a doorway. Feeling the release of the bondage wrapped around her wrists. Suzanne still was forced to follow the hand that led her here, she was taken to another room.

Suzanne noticed the familiar scent again. Suddenly her back was turned as she quickly felt the release of the blind fold that kept her from seeing. Rubbing her eyes from her tears, by the time Suzanne was able to focus and comprehend what was going on. The object that led her here has disappeared out of no where as she heard the door slam shut. Suzanne ran to the door, struggled to try to open the locked door that kept her inside. "Please let me out!" Suzanne cried.

Suzanne continued to knock on the door to get anyones attention when she heard a whimper of a noise. Suzanne turned her head as she witnessed what she never thought she would never see again.

"Edina mi bebe!" (Edina my baby!) Suzanne rushed to her baby holding her ever so closely. "I'm so happy you are alive!" Suzanne gently rocked her. "If only your father was here to see you!" Suzanne smiling at Edina.

"What!" The voice shouted.

Suzanne turned around to see who it was that brought her here against her will.

"Her father has been with her all this time yet you have the nerve to say that!" Mando out of anger grasped Edina away from her. Suzanne dropped to her knees and crawled closer to Mando begging for Edina as Mando pulled her away. "Please give me back my daughter!" Suzanne cried collapsing as her arms rested on the floor.

"Not till you acknowledge that Edina is mi hija! (my daughter!)" Mando leaned over screaming.

"Mando I haven't gotten the results back yet! I was supposed to know sometime today!" Suzanne cried reaching form Edina.

"Then call them right now and find out! I have to know the truth of who Edinas father is!

Chico tried to get some work done at the garage to keep his spirits up due to Edinas disappearance.

"Chico, I said some extra prayers for Edina today and for Suzanne. I know it is has to be especially rough on her as well". Ed fumbled with a few tools on the workbench.

"Thank you Ed, I believe it has been rough on all of us". Chico twisted a tool on the carburetor he was working on.

"Thanks for letting me go back to work already Ed. Being off to spend time with Edina was wonderful, but sitting in the apartment waiting for answers drove me crazy." Chico continued to work.

Ed rested his hand on the carburetor Chico was working on. "Chico, she's been gone for quite a while do you think she's been talking to Reverend Bemis all this time?"

"She felt she needed to talk to Reverend Bemis Ed, she's been struggling ever since she woke up realizing Edina was missing".

"You know what? I'm going to call Reverend Bemis Ed". Chico rushed to the phone and dialed Reverend Bemiss number. "Reverend Bemis, hey, is Suzanne still there? She was going to meet with you and come back here". Chico asked as he waited for his response.

Reverend Bemis, concerned, answered Chico. "Chico, my son. I'm sorry but Suzanne never showed up for her appointment with me. I asked around some members of the congregation said they had seen her at the chapel earlier and that is the last time they seen her. I was told she heading into a car with a longhaired bearded fella. I just assumed she knew him Chico".

Chico confused wondered what Suzanne was doing with a longhaired bearded fella.

Ed walked up to Chico had some pictures for him. "Ah Chico, I found these in the cabinet I was cleaning out. I wasn't sure if you wanted these old pictures or not".

Chico looked at the pictures realized who now Reverend Bemis was talking about. " I don't believe this! Ed hold those pictures for me I have to call the police". Just as Chico was about to pick up the receiver, the phone rang." Hello... No Im sorry Suzanne is not home, can I take a message? This is her fiancé, Chico Rodriguez".

"Mr. Rodriguez, seeing that you were a part of the DNA testing. I will inform you that you are Edinas father," the doctor said.

"Are you sure Doctor?" Chico shocked yet smiled. "Yes Mr. Rodriguez, you are the babys father. I will need you and Suzanne Edinas mother to fill out some paper work regarding the finalizing of the test".

"Ok, thank you doctor, thank you!" Chico smiled as the news of Edinas paternal father sunk into him.

"Ed? Ed! Where is that old man when you want him!" Chico ran into the office. Ed was dozing off in his chair.

"Ed!" Chico smiled. "What!" Ed rose up out of his chair waking up.

"The Doctor called I am officially Edina Louises father! Edina es mi hija! (Edina is my daughter!)" Chico raised his fist in the air then realized as he looked up that Suzanne and Edina were not here to celebrate the good news.

Chico started to worry. "Ed, I'm afraid something bad has happened to Suzanne. She's been gone to long without calling me and letting me know. Im calling the police to notify that Suzanne is missing also."

"Well Suzanne whose is it?" Mando gripped her arm tightly.

Suzanne received the word upon Chicos test results. Having a feeling how Mando would react upon knowing that Chico was the father, she decided on a diversion.

"C'mon Suzanne what is the doctor saying!" Mando was reacting edgy waiting for the news. Mando tried to grab the phone away from her as she hung up the phone.

Suzanne lowered her head. "Mando, Edina... is your... daughter".

Mando smiled raised his hand in victory." Edina, es mi hija!" (Edina is my daughter!)

"Mando I have to go back and get more things for Edina. She needs for formula and diapers".

"Well then we'll go and get some then" Mando replied.

Suzanne tried to convince Mando to let her out of his apartment alone. "Mando I have plenty at the apartment. I don't need to buy anymore for a while".

Mando got angry. "Do you think I'm going to let you go thinking youre going to the store or the apartment. You'll end up going to the police!" Mando said to Suzanne was getting Edina ready to go.

Suzanne thought of another idea. "Ok, you win. What if I leave Edina Louise here. That way you would know I would be coming back," Suzanne said convincingly.

Mando pacing the floor thought it over. "Well I know you wouldnt leave me with out Edina! Ok I give you 30 minutes to get her needs and come back! If youre not back by then, I will be gone and so will Edina!"

Suzanne gasped at Mandos remark quickly grabbed her handbag and headed for the store.

Rushing to the store Suzanne hurried over to the listed aisle containing the items Edina needed.

"Good! This should be enough to carry Edina over for quite a while. Heading to the Check out Suzanne spotted a payphone. Looking at her watch she noticed how much time she had left." If I'm lucky I can try to get in touch with Chico regarding Mandos obsession again". Suzanne thought.

Suzanne received her change and hurried over to the payphone, digging into her jeans for the correct change to call, she tossed the coin in the payphone and dialed the garage.

" Hurry up! Answer the phone!" Suzanne began to get nervous as she watched the clock indicate what time she had left.

"Hello Ed Browns garage!" Ed said grumpily. Suzanne hearing the familiar tone in Eds voice started to cry. "Ed! Oh God! It's Suzanne".

"SUZANNE!" Ed excitedly rose up off his chair." Here let me go get Chico!" Ed waved Chico over as he leaned over the doorway.

"Suzanne!" Chico relieved to hear her voice could hardly speak. "Chico, I don't have much time. Mando only gave me thirty minutes to go to the store". Suzanne said quietly.

"Oh God Suzanne, has he hurt you or our daughter?" Chico paced the floor.

"No, he kidnapped me while I was in the chapel, Chico. I was tied up blindfolded. Chico I had no idea where I was till Mando took the blindfold off of me. After I got myself together I realized I was gone then that's when I found Edina".

"Mi hija Edina" (My daughter Edina). Chico covered his face with emotion rocked on the chair upset crying. "Chico I have to get off and hurry back, If Im not back when Mando wants me back. He threatened to leave and take Edina with him".

"OK, ok. Listen to me Suzanne. Play along with what ever he wants you to do. I'll get in touch with the police and figure out what to do then".

"Ok.... I love you Chico!" Suzanne upset spoke quietly. "I love you too Suzanne. Please give our daughter a kiss for me and tell her I love her." Chico hung up the phone. After realizing what time she had left Suzanne hurried back to Mandos apartment.

Running as fast as she could Suzanne banged on Mandos apartment door.

"Sorry Mando I hurried as fast as I could". Suzanne said as Mando grabbed her arm. "It took you that long to get this stuff?" Mando questioned her.

"Mando this stuff is locked up in the office area to keep from getting stolen". Suzanne struggled to say.

Mando continued to grasp her hard. "You didn't tell anyone what happen to you there did you?"

"No Mando, I got what was needed and left". Suzanne took the items out of the grocery bag.

Mando fiercely released his grip upon her. "Ok then!" Mando reached into the kitchen cabinet retrieving a pan for the formula.

As the formula was heating up Mando took Edina and rocked her. "Edina, we are together at last!"

Suzanne looked at Mando. "Yes you and your daughter are together at last!" Suzanne stirred Edinas formula to keep from burning.

"No Suzanne we are all together. I can't afford to lose you now!" Mando looked at Suzanne obsessively.

Suzanne looked at Mando concerned. "Don't you think I should inform Chico and Ed what is going on with Edina Louise and I?" Suzanne tried to reason with Mando.

"Why Suzanne, in my eyes I consider you dead towards Chicos life!" Mando said.

"What? Mando you can't be serious!" Suzanne poured Edinas formula into her bottle. Suzanne reached for Edina. "Please Mando, I must feed her now, it's time for her feeding". Mando sighed and handed Edina back to Suzanne.

Suzanne smiled as she gave Edina her bottle. Gently carrying her as she continued to feed her. Rocking Edina after her feeding Suzanne drifted into a daydream of being together as a family with Chico.

Suzanne rose as she placed Edina in Mandos crib." Mando, I'm going to sleep I've had a very hard emotional day". Suzanne indicated to Mando she was going to sleep on the couch.

"Here the bedroom is over there" Mando pointed to the adjacent to the living room. Suzanne looked at Mando. "Well Suzanne seeing we're practically a family now. I say we share the same bed". Mando smiled as he rose up off the couch.

"Alright," Suzanne left to go to bed. Suzanne had a bad feeling of what might occur as she got ready for bed. "God, if possible please keep Mandos hands off of me tonight" Suzanne drifted off to sleep as Mando made his way into bed. Crawling into bed Mando lay next to her.

"Suzanne we are together at last!" Mando put his arm around her waist as a sign of togetherness.

"OH NO!" Suzanne thought

"Suzanne". Mando whispered his hand gently caressed her as he lay by her side next to her.

"Please God help me!" Suzanne prayed. As Suzanne closed her eyes Mando lay there silently falling asleep.

Sudden thrashing noises pounded against the door as it eventually busted open.

"WHAT THE..." Mando with his arm still around Suzanne looked up shocked to see several police officers as there guns were fully locked and loaded aiming at Mando.

"Mando, youre under arrest for the kidnapping of Edina Louise Rodriguez and Suzanne".

Mando was yanked out of bed and hand cuffed. Chico hurried into the apartment after hearing the raid attempt. "Suzanne, are you ok?" Chico embraced her kissing as his long slender fingers held her hair.

"Chico Edina is fine, She is resting in the other room". Suzanne hugged Chico, her tears soaked against Chicos hair.

Chico helped her up as they watched the police handcuff Mando as they read him his rights. Together they witness Mando being dragged into the police car. Mando stopped and looked back at Suzanne and Chico in a vengeance.

"God, Chico who would of thought it was going to end up like this again". Suzanne leaned her head on Chicos chest.

Chico and Suzanne quickly approached Edina Louise as they began to hug her. "Ah mi bebe!" Chico whispered, as she lay there asleep in his arms. Suzanne gently rubbed her head.

"Edina, we are never going to be apart like this again!" Suzanne kissed her forehead as a gentle breeze filled the room from the constant traffic of police officers leaving Mandos apartment.

"Come on Edina, Suzanne I know someone back home is anxious to see you two." Chico gathered Edinas things as Suzanne and Edina made there way to the waiting police car to take them back to the garage. Chico couldn't stop embracing Suzanne and Edina.

"I thought I was never going to see you again". Chico put his arm around her as he covered up Edina.

The police car pulled up at the garage entrance as the siren lights flooded the garage windows.

Ed noticed the flashing lights at his bedroom window." Hmm" Ed grumbled rose out of bed sighing to see what was happening in the neighborhood. Ed threw on his robe and hurried down the stairs, carefully opening the front entrance door only to see Chico and Suzanne with Edina getting out of a police car.

Ed was delighted in what he witnessed. Lifting his head, "Thank you God for answering this particular prayer," Ed made his way into the garage and headed towards the office.

The door to the entrance made its loud annoying announcement that Chico, Suzanne, and Edina had made their way into the garage.

"I wonder if Ed is up?" Chico took hold of Edina as he got his keys to open up the apartment. Suzanne looked around and noticed that the light was on in Ed's office. " Look Chico, Ed must be up?"


"Ed!" Chico shouted as he ran into the office. Chico found Ed wiping his eyes after seeing Edina with Suzanne.

"Ed, are you ok?" Chico approached Ed, who was looking up at Chico.

"Yeah, I'm fine, fine Chico."

Chico wiped his eyes.

"Suzanne and Edina are here. The police have arrested Mando". Chico felt relieved.

Suzanne carrying Edina walked into Ed's office. "Ed! " Suzanne in tears was trying to believe she was back to reality again.

Rising from the voice he thought he'd never hear again, Ed looked at Suzanne." Oh Suzanne, I'm so glad to see you and Edina! I thought I was never going to see you again".

Ed and Suzanne embraced as the whimper sounds of Edina made herself known. Ed kissing Edinas forehead was grateful to have them back as a family once more. Chico embraced all of them thanking God for having them all back together again.

After Mandos arrest several months ago, Suzanne and Chicos life and love together grew longer and they decided to set a date for their wedding now that Mando was out of their lives.

"Ed you know with the holidays here, I just haven't had no desire to be in the spirit even though Suz, Edina, and I are better then ever now even after their kidnapping Ed," Chico sorted parts as Ed was doing inventory.

"Yeah I understand Chico, I believe the best Christmas present you and Suzanne can have is each other and little Edina". Ed threw his papers in the trash.

"Ed, after all that sorting youre throwing out all your hard work?" Chico dug into the trash retrieving the papers.

"It's the same thing every year any ways Chico. Same amount of paper work, same amount of parts. Same amount of trash in the can."

"So have you two set a date yet?" Ed said.

"We've decided on New Years day Ed". Ed smiled as he browsed through the calendar.

"Ah a new start for a new beginning!" Ed smiled. "Well that will come very fast for you two, you only have a few days left of singlehood".

Chico smiled at Suzanne as she walked into the office. " I'm looking forward to a new start Ed".

Suzanne carrying Edina approached Ed and Chico.

"Ahhhh" Ed smiled. " How is my little girl this morning?" Ed smile as he gently placed his hands on Edinas head.

"She has been working on a special surprise for you Ed" Suzanne smiled at Edina and Ed.

"Why Edina?" Ed lowered by placing his hands on his knees. "What could this special event be?" Chico stood near Ed as Suzanne stood shortly next to them.

"Ok Edina ready?" Suzanne got Edina stable as she let go of Edinas hand. Suzanne holding her lightly and gently was ready for her support. Edina looked wide eyed at Chico reaching for her daddy. Carefully she placed one foot in front of the other.

Ed pointed to Edina. "Hey Chico she's walking, why that's wonderful!" Ed smiled and reached out his hands for Edina.

Edina took a few more steps then collapsed in front of Chico. Chico smiled at Edinas accomplishment. "Ah to witness such a fine event of our daughter". Chico hugged her as Edinas happily smiled at her daddy.

Suzanne nudged Ed. "Ed I have something personal I'd like to ask you if I may?" Suzanne motioned Chico over to be with her.

"What is it Suzanne?" Is there something wrong?" Ed seemed concerned.

"Ed as you know with the wedding coming up very soon. You have been such a dear, sweet and generous man. Excepting me after all the trials Chico and I have been through. Not judging me for the incident that caused Mando and Chico to go their separate ways". Suzanne sat down next to Ed.

"Suzanne, I have enjoyed what happiness you and Chico have made. Chico has been a wonderful friend and now a father since you two have been together".

Chico put his arm around Suzanne as Ed took a hold of Edina. Ed smiled as he made goo goo faces to Edina looking close to her.

"Ed, what I'm asking is I would like to know if you would do the honor of walking me down the aisle on our wedding day?" Suzanne embraced his arm.

Ed smiled as he looked at Edina, Chico and Suzanne. "Suz, it would be an honor to walk you down the aisle".

"Thank you Ed, this means a lot to me!" Suzanne smiled as she hugged Ed.

Della walked in Eds Office." Hello Ed, you old coot!"

"Hello Della" Ed smiled, saluted her with a raise of his shot glass.

"What are you celebrating in here!" Della asked. " Ah Edina is walking"! Della smiled as she bent down to hug her." Well I'm glad something good has come out of a name like Ed and Louie" Della rose up and motioned for Suzanne.

"Well Suzanne ready to go?" Della smiled.

"What are you two up too?" Chico curiously asked.

"Where going gown shopping for your bride to be Chico". Della smiled.

Chico smiled with eager thoughts.

"Don't get any ideas though, hun. I'll hold on to Suzannes gown for safekeeping. You know its bad luck to see the brides gown before she gets married Chico". Della with her arms on her hips addressed her point.

"Ok you two have a good time. I'm sure what you pick out will be beautiful!' Chico smiled and kissed Suzanne.

Ed picked up Edina carrying her to the workbench. C'mon Edina I'll show you the ropes on how to be a mechanic". Chico followed them from behind as he headed to the stock room.

"See Edina, in order to be a mechanic just like your father, you have to, unlike your father, know the difference between one tool from another". Ed picked up Chicos tool belt.

"Ed, I happen to know a thing or two about tools". Chico shouted.

Ed showed two tools to Edina from Chicos tool belt. "Like the difference between a Phillips and a screwdriver huh Edina?" Ed smiled at Edina as Chico tossed a rag at Eds head making Edina smile and laugh at Ed.

A few hours later Della and Suzanne arrived back from shopping. "Well fellas, we're all shopped out and all set for the big day!" Della smiled.

Chico saw several wardrobe bags that Suzanne and Della were carrying over their arms and hands. Chico walked closer tried to sneak a peak in Dellas and Suzannes bag." Hey ladies. Did you happen to buy out the whole store?" Chico tried desperately to sneak into Dellas bag.

"NO Chico and NO peaking!" Della said.

"Yeah Chico besides, there's something special in here that I'll be wearing on our wedding night" Suzanne winked.

"Hello!" Chico grinned.

"What's in the small one?" Ed asked. "I don't recall inviting any midgets to the wedding?" Ed remarked.

"Ed you old fart, its Edinas baptismal dress and if everything goes according to plan her flower girl dress". Della said with her arms on her hips.

"Flower girl dress?" Chico asked.

"Chico, Della and I were thinking since Edina has been starting to walk, we thought it would be cute to have her walk down the aisle along with Della". Suzanne smiled.

"She will be with us throughout the wedding ceremony and her baptism". Chico smiled.

"Well kids, Ed, I better get going seeing you have less then forty eight hours of single hood left". Suzanne and Chico rose to walk Della out as she left the garage." Thank you Della for all your help today".

"Hon, it the least I can do, giving me a break from all the holiday madness at the store". Della smiled as she gave them a hug before she left to her store.

"Holiday Madness? Oh Chico, with all that has been going on and with our wedding preparations we totally missed Christmas" Suzanne was surprised.

"I'm surprised Ed hasn't done anything regarding the holidays?" Suzanne said.

"Ed usually keeps to himself or he'll maybe have Louie come over. Although I believe with all that everyone has been going through. I don't think he has been in the holiday spirit. To tell you the truth Suz, I really haven't been either".

Chico embraced Suzanne as well as Edina." I just thankful that we all together for the holidays" Chico grabbed his keys and opened up the door.

"Here Suzanne, let's go inside and relax. I'm sure your all tired out after looking at all those wedding dress?"

"Oh yeah Chico, it was very grueling". Suzanne joked.

Suzanne and Chico walked into the apartment finding presents against the sofa.

"Chico! What's this?" Suzanne was amazed at all the gifts that were spread out on the sofa.

"Wow Suz! I haven't any idea?" Chico acting surprised smiled at her.

"Who are they from.... Chico. Presents from Ed.... and you?" Suzanne smiled then felt disappointed.

"Hon, I'm sorry I never got the chance to get you anything, like I wanted. Please let me make it up to you Chico". Suzanne hugged him.

"Suzanne, don't be upset, God has given Edina and you back into my life. What more can I ask for except for having my daughter and the women I love back into my life" Chico kissed her and he embraced her.

"Here Suz". Chico handed her a small wrapped package. " Chico!" Suzanne nervous from the surprise opened up the wrapped box. Suzanne opened up the felt-covered box to find a bracelet with three hearts with Chicos and Edinas name on them hanging from the chain.

"Chico, its beautiful!" Chico took the bracelet and attached it to her wrist. "Chico I have to ask what does the other heart signify?"

"Suz, didn't the doctor tell you?" Chico smiling tried to keep it inside him.

"You mean when I got the information about the DNA?" Suzanne wondered.

"Yeah!" Chico said with a big grin.

"Chico I had to hurry up after finding out you were Edinas father. Mando was right behind me ready to grab the phone away from me" Suzanne tried to explain.

"So you were never told?" Chico tried so hard to keep it in as he gave her a big grin.

"Never told what Chico?" Suzanne whacked him to get it out.

"Suz! Edina va a ser una hermana grande!" (Edina is going to be big sister!) Chico smiled big.

Suzanne listened to what Chico told her then realized what he said." Oh Chico! I had no idea!" Suzanne smiling hugged Chico and kissed him.

"Suz, the doctor said it is so early you'll probably start feeling your morning sickness very soon".

"Chico, I had been feeling kinda under the weather, I just thought it was from all the commotion with Mando kidnapping me".

Chico grinned. "I'm going to be a father again! " Chico hugged he as he kissed her. "This is the best Christmas gift you've ever given me!"

"Oh Chico, I believe you are right this is the best Christmas we both we'll have! To think what lies ahead".

"Yes, our wedding!" Chico and Suzanne smiled together.

"Less then 24 hours, Chico, till the big day, Chico. Are you nervous?" Ed asked as helped Chico with a repair.

"Nervous? Me? HA! Ha ha ha!" Chico nervously laughed. "What is there to be nervous about?" Chico nervously dropped his tools on the ground.

"Oh youre not nervous". Ed looked at Chico shaking his head. " I wonder how Suzanne is doing?" Ed wondered.

"Yeah me too Ed. Della kept insisting that we don't see each other till the wedding. That was really nice of her to have Suzanne stay with her".

Chico sighed. "I miss her already!"

"Why did she separate you two anyway Chico?" Ed toyed with an engine.

"She figured between now and the wedding the two of us would be at each others throats". Chico tossed his rag over to the workbench.

"Besides Ed, absence makes the heart grow fonder" Chico poked fun with Ed. " Oh I miss her so much!" Chico pleaded as Ed threw a rag at him.

"Well at least you two will be married and Edina will be baptized tomorrow."

"Yeah at noon we'll be Mr. and Mrs. Chico Rodriguez". Chico smiled as he daydreamed about the wedding.

"High noon huh, sounds more like a show down, let's hope it wont end up like that" Ed smiled.

"Ed this is a Rodriguez wedding not a Hatfield and McCoys! If any shots are going to occur it will be shots of Mexican holy water!" Chico explained.

"Well as long as Mando is out of the Picture you should be ok!" Ed patted Chico on his back.

"Well I'm calling it a day Chico". Ed threw his tools on the table.

"Ok Ed see you tomorrow. Don't forget your tux!" Chico hollered as Ed made his way up stairs.

Chico wiped his hands and called it a day. Chico walked into the apartment.

"Well Edina my dear this is your fathers last night of bachelorhood". Chico picked Edina out of her playpen and sat on the couch with her. Edina leaned on Chico shoulder as they both drifted off to sleep.

A knock sounded on their door as Chico woke up he wondered who would be coming over." Who could that be as he held Edina putting in her in the playpen.

Chico opened the door. "Ed? Louie?" Chico whispered trying not to wake Edina.

"Hey Chico can we come in?" Ed asked as Louie smiled.

"Sure, Sure". Chico opened the door wide as they entered bearing a gift.

"What's this all about? Ah you guys didn't have to get me anything!" Chico smiled.

"Ah Chico, Louie and I thought we'd get you something to celebrate your last night of bachelorhood". Louie smiled

"You didn't get me no girl did you?" Chico feared.

"No, No, nothing like that!" Ed said.

"Whew! That's good!' Chico smiled and was relieved to hear that.

"We did however get you and Suzanne something to celebrate your time alone together". Ed and Louie grinned as they handed Chico the gift.

Chico opened it up and started to blush. "Sonamagun! We'll enjoy this tremendously!" Chico winked. "Let's keep this a secret from her ok?" Chico winked.

"Deal!" Ed and Louie shouted and shook hands with Chico.

"Well we let you go, I'm sure you got too much on your mind about tomorrow Chico. We just wanted to stop by and wish you well". Louie said.

Chico embraced Ed and Louie." Thank you, You've been like family to myself, Suzanne and Edina"

Chico closed and locked the door as he reflected on his friendship with Ed and Louie. "Thank you Ed, Louie for having faith in me all these years". Chico thought as his hand was pressed upon the door.

Chico got ready for bed.

The morning came as Suzanne rose out of bed. "This will be day I long to remember Chico". Suzanne got ready and met Della at the Church to get dressed as Della went to pick up Edina at the apartment.

Chico got ready at the apartment as he was listening to the radio. Chico nervously danced around to get the jitters out of system while he got his stuff together just as Ed yelled for him from up stairs.

"Chico!" Ed yelled from his apartment. "Yeah Ed!" Chico was shaving.

"Can you come up here?" Ed yelled.

"Yeah hold on!" Chico left the apartment just a new bulletin interrupted the music that was being played on the radio.

"Convicted kidnapper Mando has been discovered missing from his jail cell. Police are reporting of a jail break".

Suzanne and Della got ready in one of the Sunday school rooms at the church.

"Della, you have no idea how happy I am this is finally happening!" Suzanne smiled as she adjusted her gown.

"Well, we all hoped this was going to go without any trouble. Looks like it will be a wonderful day of happiness for the three of you".

Suzanne felt dizzy all of a sudden. "Suz, are you ok?" Della asked as she fanned Suzanne." Do you want me to go get Ed?" Della waved her bulletin in front of her for some air.

"Della, I'm having a baby!" Suzanne smiled.

"Oh Edina is going to have a little brother or sister?" Della smiled.

"Yeah I found out from Chico. Isn't that something?" Suzanne smiled. "I'll be fine though Della thanks".

A knock came upon the Sunday school room door. " Come in!" Suzanne said as she and Della adjusted her veil.

Ed walked in with Edina. "Well you two look wonderful!'"

Suzanne smiled as she fixed Edinas hair. "How is Chico doing Ed?" Suzanne asked

"Chico is doing fine, Suzanne, so he says". Ed bent down toward Suzannes ear. "Suzanne he is a nervous wreck! Louie is with him trying to settle him down".

"How are you doing Suzanne. Are you ready? You make a beautiful bride". Ed said nervously.

"Now Ed, don't start getting emotional with Suzanne. We don't want to get her all misty before the ceremony". Della dragged Ed away from Suzanne.

Ed held Suzannes hand. "Ok, I'll save it all for Chico then he's been a nervous wreck all morning Della".

"Well that makes two of us Ed". Suzanne fidgeted.

Ed bent down to see Edina. "Edina Ready for your big day?" Ed looked at his watch. "Well Suz, seeing we're on the clock. Ready to get married?" Ed extended his arm for her hand.

"Ready as I'll ever be Ed" Suzanne grasped Eds arm as Della and Edina followed.

Mean while Chico is fidgeting in the other Sunday school rooms as he finished getting ready. Louie adjusted his tie." Chico, everything is fine, yes the ring has been taken care of". Louie showed him the ring.

"Man, Louie, I hope she don't back out on me now and leave me hanging!" Chico was shaking of nervousness.

"Chico, she has been here getting ready and waiting for her cue"

Louie looked at his watch. "Seeing it's almost time to get started. I agree you should get to your post too. It's almost time to get married Chico. No backing out now!" Louie smiled.

Music began to play in the sanctuary as Chico walked out to his place near the steps leading to the altar.

Chico nervously smiled as he tried desperately to get a look to see Edina and Suzanne from the sanctuary entrance.

"Good luck Suzanne". Della hugged kissing her on the cheek. Grasping Edinas tiny hand while Edina held her little bouquet of flowers that was strapped on her wrist. They both slowly start to walk down the aisle.

"Edina Louise" Della pointed to Chico as Edina smiled. Chico smiling back waved at her as she continued her stroll.

Ed extended his arm as Suzanne took hold of it. Ed and Suzanne walked towards the sanctuary as they waited for their cue. Ed closed the sanctuary doors waiting for the music to start.

"Thank you for making this day special for Chico and I, Ed" Suzanne leaned over and kissed his cheek.

Ed smiled wiped a tear from his eye.

The sound of the Bridal March rang throughout the sanctuary as Ed opened the doors again. Grasping Eds arm they both made their steps down the aisle.

Suzanne nervously walked down the aisle feeling a bit light headed. Stopped her footing and took a breather. Chico looked on as well as Della.

"Suzanne, are you ok?" Ed asked as he held her hand.

"Yeah Ed, just a bit wheezy I'll be fine. Let's get the show on the road. I'm just as nervous as Chico is right now". Suzanne laughed nervously. Ed and Suzanne walked down the aisle as the music started up again.

Ed guiding Suzanne down the aisle finally reached the steps towards the altar near Chico.

Chico was in tears as he witnessed Suzanne with Ed.

"Suzanne mi hermosa novia" (Suzanne my beautiful bride)

Reverend Bemis began the ceremony as everyone gathered around Chico, Suzanne, and Edina.

"Dearly Beloved we gather here today to witness the celebration of the joining of Francisco and Suzanne in Holy matrimony. God has given us a special day also as we celebrate the dedication and baptism of our newest Child of God, Edina Louise Rodriguez".

Reverend Bemis raised his hands. "Who gives this Bride to her Groom?"

Ed smiling stepped forward. "I do, Rev!"

Ed leaned over and Kissed Suzanne on her cheek. Grasping Suzannes hand he gently place on top of Chico and held his hand on top of theirs, gently squeezed them both.

"As we united in Holy union of Matrimony, if anyone here should feel that Francisco and Suzanne should not be married. Let them speak now or forever hold their peace".

A loud slow squeaking noise erupted as the back doors opened up.

Suzanne and Chico looked back at the doors leading out of the sanctuary.

A figure stood leaning against the opened door.

"This can't be.... Tell me this isn't happening!" Chico worriedly brushed his hair back with his hand began to cringe.

"I think Im going to be sick!" Suzanne began to feel faint all of a sudden.

Chico looking at Suzanne rushed to her aid. Chico instantly got a hold of Suzanne as she fell lifelessly in Chicos arms, fainting.

Suddenly the silhouetted figure hurriedly approached the altar.

"What is going on!" Anger in its voice fast approached Chico and Suzanne. Chico leaned Suzanne against him as he tried desperately to wake her up.

"Suzanne, Suzanne". Chico used a hanky to fan her with to give her some air. Della hurried over as well as Ed to help Suzanne.

Suzanne slowly woke up from passing out.

"What happened?" Chico concerned slow the movement of the fanning. "Chico, I looked over at the door as it creaked open. I could have sworn I had seen Mando!".

Chico tried to shrug it off to calm Suzanne down. "Suz', he's in jail..." Chico looked at Suzanne then at the figure he had seen also.

"What's going on here!" Again said the voice behind Chicos back.

Chico looked over his back, stunned to see who he hoped he never would see again. "You! What are you doing here!" Chico lifted up Suzanne and Sat her on a neighboring pew seat.

Ed, Louie and Della all decided to call the police.

"Chico, I broke out of jail Chico..." Mando spotted Della going to the make a phone call.

"I wouldn't do that if I were you!" Mando, in a hurry, went to the adjoining back room where the church office was, yanking the phone off the socket and throwing it against the wall.

"What are you doing out of jail and of all places here!" Chico tried desperately to refrain from hitting him.

"I heard on the news about the two of you getting married. I had to find some way to stop this wedding. I don't want Suzanne to make the biggest mistake of her life by marrying you Chico!" Mando was angry pointed his index finger at him.

Mando tried to slug him as Chico grabbed him from behind to keep him from swinging at him.

"Mando youre just making it harder on yourself! At this rate youll be spending a lot more time in the slammer if you don't get this obsession out of you".

Mando shrugged as he tried to get away from Chicos grip. Mando swiftly moved away from Chico and slugged him in the jaw.

Falling back from the force of Mandos swing, Chico lay passed out on the floor.

Mando rushed to Suzanne who was trying to make any sense of what happened as she awoke from passing out.

Mando, irritated, leaned over to Suzanne.

"Suzanne, first you lie to me saying that Edina is mi bebe, now you lie to me by wanting to marry Chico!" Mando pointed to Chicos direction.

Suzanne looked over to where Chico was. Suzanne was frightened to see Chico lying on the floor helpless.

"Mando if I told you who Edinas father was at your apartment you would of gone hysterical".

"That does it! " Mando ran into the office grabbing the phone cord that was ripped off the wall.

Suzanne seeing Chico lying on the floor went to him to see if he was ok." Chico! Suzanne reached her hand towards Chico as Mando grabbed her arm.

"Youre not going through with this Suzanne. If it's anyone youre going to marry, it will be me and then we will be together as a family with Edina!"

Mando pulled Suzanne away from Chico wrapping the phone cord around her wrists.

"Mando what are you doing?" Suzanne struggled to move her wrists apart as Mando continued to tie the cord around them.

With the other end of the cord hanging lose from her, Mando grabbed the cord and lead her away from Chico.

As Mando tried to pull Suzanne away from Chico he leaned over to the pew where Edina was and picked her up with his other hand. Grasping Edina over his shoulder he continued to pull Suzanne away from Chico.

Ed and Della along with Louie watched in shock as they witness what Mando was doing to Suzanne and Chico.

"If any of you make one move to stop, you will be sorry!" Mando stared at Louie, Della, Ed angrily.

Chico slowly regained consciousness after being passed out, looking at Suzanne being dragged away from him by Mando.

Suzanne struggled to fight back as she was being pulled away, looking back at Chico she cried back to him as she was forced out of her will. " CHICO! HELP ME!"

Chico tried to focus on the voice that called him. Shaking his head after realizing what happened, Chico quickly rose up as he watched Mando drag Suzanne away from him.

"Suzanne! Edina Louise!" Chico feared what was going to happen to them. Chico began to hurry over towards their direction until Reverend Bemis stopped him by pulling him back.

"Rev, what are you doing? I've got to stop Mando!" Chico tried to move as Reverend Bemis held him back by grasping his arms.

"Chico my son. No use on trying to get yourself, Suzanne, or Edina Louise seriously hurt".

"Yeah Chico, where else could would he go except for his place," Ed said.

Chico let loose of Reverend Bemis grip on him. Chico fiercely ran towards the entrance of the church door where Mando came in. Just as Chico rushed out of the door, watching as Mando revved up his car squealing his tires barreling out of the Church parking lot.

Chico holding on to the door catching his breath watched in disbelief as Suzanne and Edina were helplessly taken away from him again.

Louie came running back looking for Chico. "Chico I just called the police from the other office phone. I explained to them what happened they'll be here shortly".

"Where did he take Suzanne and Edina Louise?" Louie looked around the area for any sign of Mando.

Chico pointed to the tire marks on the street. "Louie he took Suzanne and Edina Louise away from me again!" Chico tried to control his mixed emotions of anger and sadness resting his head on Louies shoulder as he embraced him.

"Well I'll be God Damn!" Louie shook his head in sadness .

Louie calmed Chico down." Son, we'll get through Chico. No mad man like Mando will tear you and Suzanne apart".

Chico raised his head off of Louies shoulder as tears swelled up in his eyes. "Well I better tell everyone that the wedding is off. Chico wiped his eyes shaking his head in disbelief. Louie put his arm around him followed him back into the Church.

Chico slowly approached the sanctuary. "I'm sorry to have to say this everyone there isn't going to be a wedding today".

"I watched Mando make a mad rush with Suzanne and Edina to his car. God I hope they are ok". Chico crouched down on the steps that lead to the altar. Chico covered his eyes and began to get upset.

Mando sped up as he approached the on ramp to the freeway.

Crying as her tears blurred her vision Suzanne feared for what Mando was planning to do with her and Edina. Suzanne turned her head as she looked at the back seat trying to get a glimpse of where Mando had strapped Edina Louise.

"Mando, What is with you? Why did you have to do this? " Suzanne cried as she looked at the side view mirror on Mandos car. Suzanne witness the area she left from moving further and further away from her as Chico was left behind.

Suzanne was angry and upset now that Mando took her away from Chico again. Suzanne still her wrists bound together from the telephone cord swung her arms wildly out of anger toward Mando.

"OW! CUT IT OUT!" Mando yelled at Suzanne as she continued to swing at him on his shoulder and head.

Mando, wincing at her anger, got even with Suzanne. " Here Suzy take this!" Mando abruptly turned the stirring wheel sharply as Suzanne tried to swing at him again.

Suzanne swung back and fell to the dashboard hitting her head on the windshield. Mando grabbed her arm and sat Suzanne back on the seat." Now settle down!" Mando angrily shouted extended his hand holding her back.

"Mando" Suzanne wiped her eyes. "I want to go back to the church where Chico is. Edina needs to be with her father". Suzanne cried.

"Why, so you can marry him? I don't think so Suz. Besides I think Edina was taking a liking to me until you had to get in touch with Chico to take me away from her and YOU!" Mando said.

"As for you getting married? It wont be with Chico". Mando smiled as he looked at her.

Suzanne looked at Mando confused.

"Don't worry Suzanne, seeing youre still dressed for the occasion, youre still going to get married". Mando smiled sarcastically.

"What?" Suzanne looked at Mando as she tried to make out what he said.

Mando made a quick turn to the next exit. Suzanne looked at the turn off sign leading to leading to Los Vegas .

"Oh no! Your not taking me to..." Suzanne leaned her head back, couldn't believe where they were heading.

Part 4

Mando continued his drive to his destination, smiling in victory over his defeat of Chico. Looking over to his rear view mirror he watched as Edina was sound asleep in her car seat.

Mando smiled as he rested his hand on Suzanne's chin. "Soon my dear, we will be officially a family." Suzanne had fallen asleep after an exhausting emotional ride away from the church on her wedding day that she had longed for with Chico. Still bound together, Suzanne's hands rested on her head as she leaned against the car door window away from Mando.

Suzanne slowly woke up feeling the motion of the car moving as her head leaned against the door. Tears covered her eyes as she again realized she'd never see Chico again. "Oh God why is this happening to us?" Suzanne, trying to rub her eyes with her bound hands, turned over to glance at Edina who was sound asleep.

Mando looked over to Suzanne after noticing she was awake. "We are almost to our destination Suzy, are you ready?" Mando smiling brushed her hair back out of her eyes. Suzanne looked around the area as they were approaching dusk. Noticing a sea of bright lights she still wasn't sure where she was till she saw the familiar sign on an oncoming onramp. Las Vegas 15 miles.

Suzanne, fearing on what Mando had planned, wished so badly that this was a horrible dream.

"Mando! Please can't you accept the fact that Chico and I are in love with each other?" Suzanne tried desperately to separate her hands.

"Suzanne I know it was destined for you, Edina and me to be a family." Mando switched lanes to approach the exit to Los Vegas.

"If Chico desired you so bad then why did he leave for Peurto Rico when he did?"

"Mando, Chico split because I left to go back home. We both were so torn up over the fact of not being with each other. That's why when I realized I missed him so much, I came back hoping he would be there. When I found out he had left, I was crushed Mando."

"Yes Suzanne, I remember that very well. You clung on to me crying your eyes out. You were teasing me with your emotions," Mando angrily said.

"Teasing you? I admit Mando I was upset about Chico not being there, but I never had any intentions to tease you."

Mando pulled over to the shoulder lane. Suzanne looked at Mando curiously as he pulled over. "So you are saying that all that time when I was there to comfort you, you didn't appreciate it?"

"Mando I appreciated it dearly, I was so upset I would have clung on to Ed if he was there," Suzanne said tiredly.

"Well I'm happy that you appreciated my comfort." Mando wiped her eyes and kissed her. "Hmm Suzanne I see you're finally not struggling to fight with me anymore." Mando wrapped his arms around her as he embraced her.

"Have your feelings finally changed for me? Or are you reliving old times Suz?" Mando eagerly smiled.

"Mando, I have always had a special bond with you as well as Chico. I'm just too tired to slug you right now."

Mando grinned and shook his head at Suzanne's remark. "Well Suz, Edina, we are a few miles to our destination." Mando pointed to the direction of a 24-hour chapel on a billboard sign.

Mando turning to the next lane approached the exit to the chapel. "Eden's chapel of Love, huh this looks like the perfect place to make it official." Mando, smiling, winked at Suzanne as he turned into the entrance to the chapel. Pulling into the parking space near the entrance Mando shut the motor off.

"Geesh, I can't believe he's going through with this," Suzanne thought as she looked around the chapel grounds

"Ok Suzanne, Edina darling, I believe it's time we begin our life together," Mando said as he got out of his side of the car and opened Edina's side door, getting out of her seat.

Mando hustled over to Suzanne's side and opened her door grasping her arm as she ducked her head. Mando helped her out of the car.

Mando carrying Edina led Suzanne to the chapel entrance. Mando let loose the cord that was wrapped tightly around her wrists.

"Don't do anything stupid now Suzanne, from here on out, it's you me and Edina." Mando wound up the cord and stuffed it in his coat pocket.

Mando carrying Edina tightly grasped Suzanne's hand made their way into the chapel.

Chico, covering his head with his hands, tried to get his thoughts together as he wept from losing Suzanne and Edina again. Walking up to Chico, Ed sat down next to him resting his hand on his shoulder. "God Chico, I don't know what to say except for.... I'm sorry."

Chico sat there staring out of nowhere. "Ed, this was supposed to be a special day for Edina as well as Suzanne and I. God only knows how long we've waited for this day. I mean, first the shooting, then the trial, now this," Chico bent forward as he placed his hands over the back of his head leaning over. "I guess it was never meant to be."

"Now listen here, Chico, I know it was meant to be. God gave you Suzanne, Edina, and now your upcoming baby for a reason Chico." Ed rubbed his mustache as he wiped his eyes. "If God can give me a young cocky Peurtorican to come into my life. He sure can give you Suzanne and Edina".

Ed removed his hanky from his pocket and wiped his eyes. "Why, you've got it made, Chico, God gave you a break! Look what I've had to put up with these past few years." Ed smiled embracing Chico. "Now let's get outta here." Ed along with Chico rose up from the steps as two police officers came up to Chico.

"Mr. Rodriguez?" Police officers cornered Chico. "We have been taking reports from other witnesses here regarding what happened to your fiancée and daughter. Can you tell us what happened?"

Chico explained to the officers what happen during the wedding ceremony. ".... When I heard the door open up and seen him leaning against the door I didn't want to believe it, I thought I was hallucinating from nerves or something till he approached me from behind."

Chico shook with fear from his appearance. "I had no idea Mando escaped from jail!"

"We will do all we can, Mr. Rodriguez." The officers walked out of the chapel with Chico as Ed, Louie and Della followed them from behind.

"Chico, I'll keep Suzanne and you in my thoughts and prayers. Something is bound to come up. I don't think Mando can hide out for so long." Della hugged Chico and Ed.

"Well Chico how about you and Ed come over to my place and hang out for a while. I really don't think you should be alone right now. Please hang out with me for a few," Louie cornered Chico.

"Well Louie I don't know...." Chico said,

"Ah come on Chico just a few hours. It'll make you feel better, Chico," Louie nudged him.

"Oh all right!" Chico and Ed left for Louie's place

Mando, carrying Edina, grasped Suzanne's arm as they made their way inside the chapel. "Come on, come on Suzy!" Mando's adrenaline was up knowing he soon would accomplish his desire.

"Mando I'm hurrying as fast as I can." Suzanne rushed to an awaiting empty chair in the lobby.

"What's with you already! Remember there's no turning back." Mando grasped her arm as they made their way inside.

"Please Mando. Can I rest a bit, I'm not feeling well." Suzanne sat down on a bench near the lobby.

"No screwing around, Suz," Mando said.

"Mando, I'm serious. I think it's the flu". Suzanne hoped Mando would believe her since he was unaware of her pregnancy.

Mando put his hand on her forehead. "You don't feel warm. Ok sit here for a few minutes." Mando looked around the chapel lobby for some assistance.

A lady walked into the lobby. " Welcome to Eden's Chapel of Love can I help you?"

"Yes, we are here to get married!" Mando smiled.

"Well you picked the perfect night to be married Sir. We are usually booked at this time. There just happens to be a opening available in the chapel starting in 15 minutes."

"Really? I'll, we'll take it!" Mando grinned with happiness as he graciously paid for the ceremony. Mando grasped Edina as he walked over to Suzanne.

"Well Suzanne we need to go to the chapel now they have us available in fifteen minutes." Mando extended his hand out to hers. Suzanne took in a deep breath and sighed. "Please forgive me Chico for what I'm about to do." Suzanne rose up as she tried to keep from crying.

Suzanne stopped as she tried to pull back. "Mando I can't go through with this!" Tears falling from her eyes.

Mando gripped her arm tightly as the chaplain came out looking for them. "Is everything ok?" asked the chaplain.

Mando looked at the chaplain fearing his anger would get him in trouble." Yes, yes!" Mando nervously smiled. "Pre wedding jitters".

"I see, that's normal for young couples theses day wanting to get married." The chaplain embraced both Mando and Suzanne. " Let's all take in a deep breath and get married shall we?" Mando extended his hand to Suzanne indicating to her to go ahead.

Suzanne fearfully walked in knowing her life from now on was over with Chico. Suzanne shook her head slightly in disbelief knowing that if Mando had seen her showing her true feelings in front of the chaplain she or Edina would live to regret it.

The music played on a old pipe organ as the sound of the bridal march echoed throughout the chapel. Mando still had a hold of Edina as he took hold of Suzanne's hand.

Mando eagerly took the first step down the aisle leading to the chaplain. "Come on Suzy," Mando smiled

Edina whimpered wanting her mother. "Please Mando, please let me hold my daughter she needs me." Suzanne worried over Edina hoping she wouldn't forget her own father Chico.

"OK Suz" Mando handed Edina over to Suzanne. " Edina" Suzanne whispered. "Someday we will be with your father again, I promise".

As Suzanne grasped upon Edina Mando took hold over her arm and escorted her towards the chaplain.

"We here at Eden's Chapel of Love wish to honor in the marriage of Mando and Suzanne".

"Do you Mando take Suzanne to be your lawfully wedded wife?" The chaplain looked at Mando.

"Yes, yes I do!" Mando gratefully announced.

"Do you Suzanne take Mando to be your lawfully wedded husband?" The chaplain looked at Suzanne.

Suzanne paused for a moment. Mando looked at her edgy and eagerly. "Come on Suzy" Mando gestured with his hand to quickly answer as he smiled nervously.

"I...I do" Suzanne began to feel ill from the moment she spoke.

"May I have the ring?" The chaplain asked. Mando gave him the ring. "Bless this ring for it is a sign of happiness in their life and love together".

Mando was given the ring back and placed it upon Suzanne's finger.

"By the power invested in me by the state of Nevada, I know pronounce you man and wife. You may kiss the bride!" The chaplain smiled

Mando relieved to hear the words he longed for embraced Suzanne leaning forward to kiss her.

"Thank you Suzanne for making us complete." Mando whispered as he kissed her. As Mando embraced her, Suzanne thought about Chico and if she would ever seen him again. Wondering how was he going to react to this marriage.

Mando grasping Suzanne escorted her to the chapel registry to sign their wedding certificate. Mando pen in hand eagerly signed his name then gave Suzanne the pen. Suzanne dreaded this moment as Mando looked on.

Mando came up from behind her putting his hand on her. "Let's go celebrate! They gave us Chips and a coupon for a stay at the casino across the street Suz."

Mando smiling picked up Edina and bounced her over his shoulders.

Mando and Suzanne checked in to their hotel room. Mando was ecstatic, smiling as he rubbed his hands together. " I did it, I finally did it!" Mando walked to Suzanne from behind as she dug into Edina's nursery bag looking for more formula.

Mando wrapped his arms around her as he embraced her. Kissing her neck, he wanted her. Suzanne tried to fight the feeling he was giving her as she closed up the bag.

"Suzanne," Mando continued to arouse her. Suzanne remembered the feelings Mando had given her when he embraced her day she found out Chico had left for Puerto Rico. She began to feel the same sign of emotions as Mando continued to touch her. Suzanne couldn't fight the fact that she wanted it, wanted Mando.

"God. This is scaring me, Mando wants me"..."I wish ...I was with Chico"... "Yet with Mando here I am feeling something for Mando. I wish Mando would stop arousing me"... "If only Chico was here with me"..." It's no use Mando will never let me go!"

Suzanne her eyes closed tightly desperately tried to fight the feeling Mando was giving her.

"Mando..." Suzanne gasped as she held on to the table. "I have to get more of Edina's things. Her personal stuff is at the apartment." Mando kissing her was too much into the mood as he kept arousing Suzanne.

Mando sighed as he slowly kissed her neck. "Ok, we'll go after we have a little time together. After all this is our honeymoon!" Mando smiling took hold of Suzanne's hand and led her to their bed.

As Mando began to kiss her, he held her gently as he eased her back on the bed. "Suzanne, what can be more special than this moment." Mando caressed Suzanne as she tearfully accepted him knowing she would never have Chico again.

"That's my girl!" Mando smiled quietly moaned as he took in her movement. Suzanne started to shiver as she tried to imagine somehow a life without Chico as she accepted Mando.

Mando relaxed as he released himself upon her. Kissing her ever so, Mando brushed her hair back kissing her forehead.

Mando rolled over and thought about what Suzanne needed for Edina. "Ok my dear, let's find a way to retrieve Edina's things without anyone finding us. I'm sure by now Chico has called the cops about you being taken away and about me assaulting him. I'm sure of it".

Mando tapped his fingers on the bed stand thinking of away to go back to the garage. "I imagine Chico and Ed will be attending Church tomorrow especially in regards to losing you and Edina."

"I say we leave tomorrow very early that way you can get all of Edina's stuff and we can be gone before they arrive back from church, Suzanne."

Mando looked at Suzanne as she lay there.

"Is that alright with you Suz?" Mando asked.

"What ever you want to do Mando". Suzanne sighed. "As long as Edina is well taken care of."

Mando and Suzanne decided to get to bed early for their arrival back to the garage.

"God, please find it in your heart to help us, help me get the strength I need so desperately to carry on with my life. Wherever Suzanne and Edina are please keep them safe from harm".

Ed knocked on Chico's door. "Chico, are you ready? I thought I would attend Church with you today."

Chico sighed was half dressed. "I don't know anymore Ed, just going back there will remind me of what happened to Suzanne and Edina".

Ed embraced his arm. "I understand Chico, still Reverend Bemis wants to talk to you, about yesterday." Ed sat down on the sofa as he waited for Chico to finish dressing. "I don't blame you if you decide you don't want to go."

Chico, looking in the mirror as he messed with his hair, thought it over. "Still I'm sure Suzanne would have wanted me to go on with my life." Chico sighed as he kept visioning Mando taking her away.

"OK Ed, I'll go but if I feel uncomfortable please understand if I get up and decide to go home."

Ed hugged Chico. "Thank you Chico, I sure we will all understand if you have to." Chico and Ed finished getting ready and left to go to Reverend Bemis's Church.

Chico and Ed left to go to church. Arriving into the chapel where Chico and Suzanne were to be married, Chico started to feel upset. "Oh God just let me get through this service I will be forever grateful."

Reverend Bemis cornered Chico. "Chico my son, I'm so glad you could make it. Please sit down Mrs. Attenberry has been praying especially hard for you and Suzanne."

Mrs. Attenberry approached Chico.

"Chico, please accept my prayers for Suzanne and your daughter Edina." Mrs. Attenberry's small hand embraced Chico's.

"Thank you ma'am." Chico choked up leaned over the pew to embrace her.

Reverend Bemis walked up to the pulpit as the music from the organ died down.

"Members of the Congregation I am here as a plea to have all of you pray for our brother Chico Rodriguez to keep his strength as we continue to pray for the safe return of his fiancée Suzanne and there daughter Edina Louise Rodriguez".

Chico stood up as he heard Reverend Bemis also pleaded with the congregation.

"Please, if you know of anything that can help bring both my fiancée and daughter back please notify the police immediately." Chico choked up with emotion and covered his eyes, as he became upset.

Reverend Bemis walked over to Chico as he embraced him. "We will do all we can to help you Chico."

Mando, carrying Edina with Suzanne, left Las Vegas early as planned. Mando put his arm around her. Mando continued to embrace Suzanne as Suzanne thought about Chico. "If only I could get the chance to see you again Chico. That would make life worth living."

Mando continued speeding through the highway as they approached the on-ramp to East Los Angeles.

"Now remember Suz, no funny stuff just get what we need and we're leaving ok?" Mando said sternly. "I don't want to catch you leaving any trace that we were here for Chico or the cops. Do you understand?"

Suzanne sighed leaned over the back seat checking on Edina. "Yes, Mando, I understand perfectly."

Mando made his turn to the merging lane to East Los Angeles. Mando slowly drove through the side streets as he made his way towards the garage.

"Ok Suzanne, we're going to have to hurry up. I believe the services ends in twenty minutes unless of course Reverend Bemis continues to run at the mouth with his sermons."

Mando sped over to the garage as he kept an eye on his watch backing in the drive way Mando pulled up to the garage door.

Taking the keys off the ignition Mando handed Suzanne the key to the front door and to the apartment.

"Ok let's hurry Suz, we don't have much time." Mando got ready to open his car door as he stopped Suzanne opening hers. "Remember Suzy, I'm not leaving your side so don't do anything you'll regret".

"I know, I know, there's no way I would do anything that could harm my chances of losing Edina Louise again."

Mando looked around the neighborhood as they made their way out of Mando's car.

"OK Suzy the coast is clear." Mando swung his door open as well as did Suzanne, they both hurried over to the garage door entrance.

Suzanne hurried over to the apartment, as well as did Mando. "Suzanne hurry up and get what you need I'll be by the entrance looking for any sign of trouble. You have 5 minutes to get her needs then we are heading out!"

Suzanne hustled to the apartment grabbing anything of Edina's she could get her hands on. Suzanne grabbed another diaper bag and stuffed anything and everything she figured Edina needed.

Suzanne hurried out the door and locked it. "Ok, ok Mando, I think I have everything Edina needs right now." Mando opened the door as Suzanne walked out Mando followed her and locked the door behind him.

Mando started up the car and roared the engine. Cruising through the alley Mando turned the corner heading toward a side street. Suzanne went through the items she gathered folding them back into the bag.

After a emotional church service Chico decided to walk home. Chico thought it over and decided to take a different route home instead of his usual. Thinking of the sermon Reverend Bemis preached today Chico pondered about what Reverend Bemis said and how it effected him.

"We have troubles all around us, but we are not defeated. We do not know what to do, but we do

not give up the hope of living. We are persecuted, but God does not leave us. We are hurt

sometimes, but we are not destroyed.......So we do not give up. Our physical body is becoming

older and weaker, but our spirit inside us in made new every day. We have small troubles for a

while now, but they are helping us gain an eternal glory that is much greater than the troubles. We

set our eyes not on what we see but on what we cannot see...."

Chico, his head hung low, continued to walk then stopped near a corner shaking his head.

"Help me Lord, get me through this. I can't bear to be without my child and Suzanne."

A squealing sound was heard about a couple a blocks away when Chico looked up. Chico looking at the direction of the sound noticed a familiar car coming his way.

Chico watched as the car came closer to him. Chico noticed the familiar car. "That looks like? Nah that isn't his... there's no way he would show here after yesterday."

The car roared by Chico. Chico got a good look at the car that passed him by. "Mando? Mando's here!" Chico did a double take, as he believed he had seen Suzanne in the car also. Chico started to follow them. As traffic from the oncoming street stalled Mando and Suzanne, Chico finally caught up with them.

Mando and Suzanne were stalled by the traffic caused by a semi trying to make a sharp turn.

"Come on, come on, man " Mando shouted at the semi stalling the traffic behind it. Honking his horn, Mando started to gun the engine as he anxiously waited.

Suzanne continued folding Edina's things just as Mando and her heard someone pounding on their back window.

"What the...." Mando turned his head looking at the back wind, shocked at who he saw.

"What...?" Suzanne questioned Mando as she turned her head and looked behind her. "Chico? Chico!" Suzanne shouted, dropped what she folded in the floor of the car and quickly rolled down her window. "Chico!" Suzanne cried out reaching her hand towards him.

Chico hearing her voice hurried over to her as the traffic started to move. Mando feared seeing Chico as he pressed on the gas pedal. "Suzanne!" Chico yelled back as he began to chase them by foot.

"What are you doing!" Mando yanked Suzanne back into her seat. "Great, now we're really screwed Suzanne".

Chico continued to chase them by foot as he noticed a police car was following them. Mando drove quickly around the corner hoping to ditch Chico and the police who he thought was following him. Pulling into an alley Mando waited for a few minutes he got his thoughts together.

"Well Suz, looks like we lost Chico and the police." Mando, relieved to have gotten away from them, relaxed a bit. Mando retrieved his thoughts after seeing Chico started to make his way out of the alley.

Chico continued running trying to find Mando's car. "Damn! Where in the hell did he go! Mando couldn't have gotten far."

Chico leaned against an abandoned building trying to catch his breath as he wondered which way they could of gone.

The sudden squeal of tires roared again as he heard the sirens following from behind. Chico looked around hoping soon Mando would be cornered and the nightmare would be over.

Squealing tire sounds began to fade, as did the sirens. "Mando should just give up. Who knows what dangerous stunt he will pull to get away."

Mando's car drove around the block again as he swiftly drove into the other side of the alley where Chico was. Mando's car began to stall as he tried desperately to start it up again.

"Come on! Come on! Don't fail me now!" Mando shouted and slammed the stirring wheel with his fist. Mando looked into his rearview mirror as he seen the cops drive past him on the main street.

Putting the car in reverse Mando tried desperately to get his car going again. "This damn thing is stuck Suzanne, WE ARE SCREWED!" Mando shouted.

Chico noticed Mando's car stalled, hurried over to Suzanne. Mando tried and tried to accelerate in the gas pedal to back out of the alley. "This damn thing won't go on reverse!"

Suzanne feared for her and Edina as Mando tired to get moving. Mando kept punching on the gas pedal.

Just as the car backfired going into reverse Chico approached them.

Mando felt a jolt as his car bolted out of the alley on reverse.

"What was that? " Suzanne wondered as she looked at the side of her car.

Suzanne looked out of her window finding Chico lay upon the ground. "Oh my God Mando, you've hit him! You've hit Chico!" Suzanne cried, tried to open up her door.

Mando pulled her back. " NO! Stay out of this! It's bad enough he knows we're here!"

Mando gunned the accelerator and took off. Suzanne watched out of the back window as Chico lay still on the ground. Tears streamed down her face hoping Chico was all right.

As Mando sped out of the neighborhood, people walking by noticed Chico on the ground.

A couple of kids played near the alley as they noticed Chico. Abraham a young scrawny kid with his older brother Juan was out playing.

"Hey you!" Abraham, along with Juan, nudged the lifeless body of Chico's. "Are you ok?" Abraham knelt down and looked closer.

"He's not moving? Is he... dead?" Juan leaned over to look.

Abraham looked closer trying to find some movement. " He seems to be alive".

"Juan go run across the street and have someone call an ambulance". Juan ran across the street to Della's Delicatessen.

Juan ran into the store as the front entrance door slammed shut. "Some one please call ambulance! Someone please call ambulance!"

Della hurried over to the little boy. "Son, what seems to be the matter?"

Juan nervously nudged Della. "Ma'am there is a man laying in the alley. He is hurt."

Della asked. "Are you sure this man is not a drunk?" Della leaned down to the Juan.

Juan grabbed her hand and tried to tug her to follow him outside. Della grabbed her coat. "OK, Ok I'll look at him, this better not be a drunk though."

Juan ran fast to the alley as Della followed. Waiting for Della as Juan pointed to the direction where Chico was.

Della rushed up to the lying body. Chico was faced down to the ground.

"Oh dear that poor fella, let's see if he is ok?" Della carefully brushed his hair back only to realize who it was.

"Oh dear God it's Chico!" Della shouted. "Son hurry back to my shop and call an ambulance."

"Chico, I hope you are alright!" Della carefully moved him. The ambulance with a screeching halt arrived near the alley.

Della waved their direction over to them as the paramedics hurried over to them. One of them opened up their medical equipment bag and started to examine Chico. "He has a concussion, also he has cracked ribs and possible internal injuries ma'am."

Della gave all of Chico's personal information that she was aware of.

"Ma'am, If you are aware of his next of kin, it would be wise to notify them. I'm afraid this doesn't look good. Doesn't look good at all."

Della feared telling Ed the news of Chico's condition. "I will let someone know immediately. Where is he being taken to?" Della worried.

The paramedic gave Della the information on what hospital Chico was going to be taken too.

As Chico was securely strapped on a back brace and neck brace, Della watched in fear as they placed an oxygen mask over him. "God this doesn't look good at all. God once I tell Ed the condition regarding Chico, PLEASE don't let Ed give up on life. This is sure going to put Ed in a very bad state."

Della wept as she witness Chico being put in the ambulance closing the doors the paramedics rushed out of their alley.

Wiping her eyes Della stood there as she began her tearful journey towards Ed's garage.

Della stared at the old garage door as each of her steps brought her closer to the news that she feared to tell Ed.

Della approached the main door of the garage. Pounding on the door as hard as she could muster, she waited for Ed to answer the door.

Creaking noises sounded as Ed looking at the window noticed Della by the door. "Whadda you want at this time of night!" Ed grumped.

Della eyes blurry with emotion tearfully looked at Ed. "Ed, I'm afraid something bad has happened to Chico."

Della was too upset to talk. ".... He was found in the alley across my shop. Two young boys found him there." Della began to wipe her eyes. Ed leaned against the doorway and looked at her in disbelief.

"I thought they were just telling me about a drunk till I seen Chico's face. Della wiped her eyes and reached over to Ed and embraced him.

Ed was in shock upon hearing about Chico, and clasped his hand upon the door he leaned against. "What happened? Is he alright?" Ed started to fidget nervously.

Della wiped her eyes. "Ed, Juan the little boy who cornered me took me when the paramedics arrived. They told the paramedics that it was a possible hit and run Ed".

Della put her arm around him. "Ed, I'm afraid it doesn't look good. He looks like he's in real bad shape".

Ed embraced Della as he took the news regarding Chico's condition, was too shocked to hear. Ed's eyes began to swell up, as he feared he was going to lose Chico.

"Della...Where did they take Chico" Ed hurriedly got ready to go.

"Ed I have all the information, I'll drive you over."

Della drove Ed to the hospital as Ed tried to comprehend the fact that Chico was in an accident.

"Della, how did Chico look?" Ed tearfully asked.

"Ed. He was all bruised up, he could hardly see, his eyes were swollen shut. His face was all cut. God only knows how the rest of his body is."

Ed flinched when Della spoke of his injuries.

Ed and Della arrived at the Emergency room at the hospital. Hospital staff and emergency personal scurried about checking on patients. A few police officers were there filling out forms.

Ed and Della approached a nurse at the nurse's station. "Excuse me, I would like to know where I may find Chico Rodriguez and if we can see him."

A nurse came over to check their admission records. "I'm sorry there is no Chico Rodriguez admitted here."

Ed began to get nervous. " God I hope he's not..."

Della hugged him. "Now Ed, I'm sure there must be a misunderstanding. Let me try..."

Two police officers along with a surgeon approached Ed and Della. " Excuse me sir, I'm officer O'Reilly, would you by any chance be related to a Francisco Rodriguez? Tall about 6'1 thin, brown hair, mustache?"

"Yes! My name is Edward Brown, I'm Chico's, Francisco's guardian," Ed pleaded, looking at the officer.

The officer sadly placed his hand on Ed's arm. "Please come with me to the waiting room sir. We need to talk..."

Ed along with Della followed the officers to the waiting room. "Please Mr. Brown, please sit down."

"How is he?" Ed, concerned, started to worry. Della walked over to give Ed some coffee.

"Ed, please have some coffee." Ed gratefully took the cup from her.

"Mr. Brown, Francisco Rodriguez has several severe injuries." Ed, shocked from the Doctors response, continued to listen.

Ed, saddened to hear of the Doctors report, lowered his head trying to make sense of what was said. Realizing the outcome, he asked the doctor how he really was. "Doc, how bad is he?"

"Mr. Brown, Francisco has a concussion along with several cracked ribs. We feel he is in grave danger as he is experiencing internal injuries suffered from the accident."

"Internal injuries, Doc? How bad is he?" Ed feared as he began to feel the reality set in.

"Mr. Brown, from the thrust of the car that approached Francisco in his case at a high speed according to the police report. I'm afraid he has severe bruises near his spine that can result in possible paralysis. He is breathing through a respirator at the present time."

"Breathing through a respirator?" Ed, shaken, started to tremble with fear of losing him.

Della gasped as Ed lowered his head in his hands trying to face what was to come. "Can I see him?"

"Yes, although I must warn you in his condition Francisco is unconscious, please approach with caution, Mr. Brown, he may be able to hear you." The Doctor embraced his shoulder and went about his rounds.

Ed, saddened, walked towards the ICU ward where Chico was admitted. Turning the corner he witnessed the doors that indicated the ICU ward. Ed sighed took in a deep breath and slowly made his way inside.

Ed looking around trying to find Chico's bed decided to corner a nurse. "Ma'am, where can I find Chico...Francisco Rodriguez?"

The nurse, saddened, shook her head in disbelief. "We are all surprised, sir, with his amount of injuries, that he is still alive." The nurse walked Ed over to where Chico was stationed.

"He is over here sir." The nurse pulled open the privacy curtain as Ed witnessed how bad of shape Chico was in.

"Are you his father?" asked the nurse.

"No ma'am, I am his guardian." Ed, shocked at Chico's appearance, had tears in his eyes as he saw him. Ed walked up closer to Chico as he looked at all the equipment that was strapped on him.

"Chico." Ed placed his hand on Chico's long slender fingers and squeezed them. There was no response from Chico as he lay there still.

Ed just couldn't bear seeing him like this as he broke down crying. Leaning over Ed placed his hand on Chico's bandaged forehead. "Chico..."

Ed grabbed a chair and sat next to Chico, leaning over he prayed for some sort of miracle. "Please God, You know I am not much of a person of prayer but please find it in heart to save Chico from this horrible accident."

Silence filled the air as the rhythmic sound of the ventilator filled the room.

"I don't know what I would do without you Chico. You've been like a son to me," Ed wiped his eyes as he gently rubbed Chico's hand.

"You're all I got now Chico, With Suzanne and Edina Louise missing your all I have to live for." Ed covered his head with his hands and wept by Chico's legs.

*****

Mando and Suzanne quickly made it back to Mando's apartment. "Well at least we made it passed the cops this time Suzanne." Mando tossed his keys on the counter.

Mando thought about what happened in his car. "Let me tell you something Suz, if I ever catch you going after Chico like you did when we were in the car. There's no telling what I'll do."

Suzanne flinched at Mando's behavior towards her. "Chico is out of your life now! Deal with it Suzanne."

Suzanne tried to reason with Mando. "But Mando, Chico looked seriously hurt".

"Get over it! It's you and me, not you and CHICO!" Mando was in her face.

Mando leaned over to Suzanne and hugged her. "Now here let me calm you down. I know seeing Chico on the ground like that was horrifying. It scares me too." Mando paced the floor. " I just hope that Chico or no one else can describe what kind of vehicle hit him."

Mando sighed, as he feared what could happen to him.

"I just can't go back to the slammer, Suz. Except for Chico, no one still realizes that we are back in town. I'm assuming that they think I'm still on the run."

Mando thought about what he was planning on next.

Suzanne quietly turned on the TV.

"We have an update on the hit and run that occurred this morning in East LA. Police are investigating the scene of an apparent hit and run. The victim in his early 20's Francisco Rodriguez is in grave condition at City Hospital. Police are trying to find any evidence of what occurred this morning. Police are asking if any one witnessed this horrifying accident to call the them immediately."

Suzanne shook in fear. "Oh God there's a chance Chico could die!" Suzanne, saddened, shook her head in disbelief.

Mando after hearing Suzanne's remark went up to her. "Are you feeling sorry for him?"

"Mando, for God sake, he is Edina's father!"

"From now on I am Edina's father!" Mando leaned over to Suzanne angrily pointing his chest.

Mando sat down on the couch contemplating his next move.

"Listen Suzanne, I have a few contacts in Tijuana who are willing to help me out. I can't afford to lose this because it could mean a lot of money for us. However I can't afford to take you along due to what I'll be involved with. I trust you to stay here and lay low for a few days. If you get recognized by anyone you and I will be screwed for life! Do you understand?"

Suzanne wondered what kind of business he was up too.

"Yes" Suzanne sighed. "I understand."

Mando smiled as he extended his hand towards her. "Now come on Suz, it will be a while to we see each other again. Lets make the most of what we have now".

Suzanne excepted Mando's hand even though she knew Mando was up to something she feared to ask him about.

Sitting on the bed Suzanne wondered if her life would change again when he returns back from Tijuana.

Chico was in her mind again as she thought about his condition in the hospital. "Will I ever see you again? Could I ever see you again?" Suzanne thought of him as she struggled with her emotions regarding her and Mando.

Mando laid her back on the bed as he gratefully took her as she responded to his touch. "I can't understand why Mando can be so angry about Chico," Suzanne stirred as Mando held her.

Suzanne struggled with the twisting feelings she was having towards Mando. Knowing deep down how much she still loved Chico. Yet Mando was here to comfort her.

"Ok, I'll get through this," Suzanne thought as Mando caressed her.

Suzanne struggled with what she was feeling. "God please tell me this isn't happening to me!"

Suzanne laid her head back realizing what was happening to her. "I've always had a fondness for Mando but there's something different about him now?" After a sensual moment together Mando and Suzanne drifted off to sleep.

Struggling with the thoughts that she still had, Suzanne quickly rose up rubbing her eyes. "Oh God! I'm having feelings for him!" Suzanne looked over at Mando who was still sound asleep.

"I've got to try to control this. After all Chico is Edina's father".

Mando began to stir as he turned over." Suzanne, are you ok?" Rising up Mando put his arm around her as he embraced her.

"Mando, I am trying to face reality. As much as I love Chico, somehow I never thought this would happen. Mando with all that has happened to me, with you and Chico. I..."

Suzanne leaned forward and covered her eyes. Looking at Mando she expressed to him the feelings that were inside her.

"Mando as much as I have loved Chico, my feelings for you have some how become stronger...Oh God Mando, I always thought of you as a dear friend but I never thought it would end up like this."

"Suzanne," Mando gently rubbed her arm as he was embracing her. "Suzanne, what are you saying?"

Suzanne placed her hand on Mando's chin. Gently rubbing it as she looked into his eyes Suzanne expressed her feelings for him.

"Mando, I am starting to fall in love with you." Suzanne started to cry as she began to rock back and forth out of fear for Chico.

Mando sat up in the bed and held her. "Suz, I knew it was a matter of time you'd start feeling the same as I do for you."

"If Chico finds out about this, this will kill him for sure," Suzanne leaned forward buried her head in her hands.

Mando gently rubbed Suzanne as he embraced her. "Everything is going to be ok Suzanne, let's go back to sleep now," Mando brushed her hair back hugging her as she laid back down.

Early in the morning Mando rose out of bed getting ready to leave for Tijuana. Suzanne rose out of bed after a rough night.

Now that she had spoken to Mando about her sudden feelings for him, Suzanne still had to see Chico and find some way to tell him about her feelings towards Mando now.

Suzanne got Edina fed and changed as Mando was getting to leave for Tijuana.

"Please Suzanne, please be careful when I'm gone. I hate to have to come back and find out that the cops where looking for you and for me." Mando kissed Suzanne goodbye and left for Tijuana.

Suzanne turned on the TV and heard about an update regarding Chico's condition.

" ...Francisco Rodriguez who was involved in the hit and run that occurred in East Los Angeles condition remains in grave condition. Still nowhere about on the driver involved in the hit and run that resulted in Francisco's serious severe injuries. Our reporters have spoken to a Edward Brown about Francisco whom Edward refers to as Chico."

The news report then turned to the segment showing Ed being interviewed. Ed appeared saddened as he tried to keep from crying by Chico's bedside.

"This is a very sad time for me right now. Seeing Chico cling to life like this shouldn't be happening to a bright young man who has a daughter and another child on the way. With his wife and daughter missing it is a difficult time for me, as well as for Chico. I don't think I can go on if anything were to happen to him"

Ed covered his eyes began to weep as the camera faded out on Ed.

"Oh Ed! This has to be rough on you. If only there was a way I could see you and Chico," Suzanne worried over Ed after seeing him on the news.

Suzanne struggled to get Ed's sad appearance out of her mind. "It is early enough. Maybe I can sneak over there and find some way to see Chico without being caught." Suzanne grabbed Edina's diaper bag as she got Edina ready to go.

"Thank goodness we are not too far from the hospital." Suzanne put on a heavy coat along with a scarf and sunglasses she carefully snuck out of the apartment with Edina.

Suzanne hurried walked through the side streets that lead to the hospital. As the sun was indicating that morning was approaching Suzanne made her way into the hospital entrance.

"Well Edina we made it here so far without being recognized." Suzanne sat on a stair well step as she figured out what to do now that she was here.

An elderly Nun had approached the stairwell as Suzanne was fussing with Edina. Suzanne spotted the nun and had an Idea. Suzanne picked up Edina and quietly followed the nun.

Trying not to disturb the nun Suzanne followed her to the convent quarters of the hospital.

Another Nun saw Suzanne come in the convent. "Can I help you miss?"

"Suzanne scared she was going to be recognized quickly thought of a diversion. "Isn't this the area that has the daycare center?" Suzanne hoped there was one.

"Yes, it is right this way. Please follow me". The nun escorted Suzanne to the nursery where the day care center was located.

"Here miss. You may have her stay here as long as she is registered." Suzanne was given forms to fill out regarding Edina's identity.

"Geesh, I don't want to use her real name. They might have her listed as a missing child or something." Suzanne thought.

"What is your child's name miss?" asked the nun.

Suzanne had to think of something quick. "Here name is.... Hannah, Hannah Elizabeth"

"Well that is a cute name! Hello Hannah!" An elderly hand grasped Edina's small hand and took her to the play area.

"Thank you sister." Suzanne glanced as she watched the nuns fuss over Edina. Suzanne began to head out carefully when she accidentally opened the wrong door going out.

"What's this? A closet full of Nuns outfits?" Suzanne wondered. "Hmm." Suzanne began to have an idea.

"Maybe no one will recognize me if I put one of these outfits on." Suzanne scurried around trying to find one that was her size yet big enough to disguise her.

One garment at a time Suzanne carefully changed into the nun's outfit. Suzanne laughed. "I've always wanted to be a Nun, I didn't think I'd go this far."

Suzanne hurried out and looked for a nurse's station. Locating one, Suzanne made her way over as she prepared herself as a nun.

"Excuse me, ma'am" Suzanne asked.

"Yes Sister, how can I help you?" A head nurse was filing a report.

"I'm looking for a Francisco Rodriguez. I'm here to pray for him by his bed side."

"Yes Sister. He is located in ICU. I understand, he is in everyone's prayers here, Sister. It is a shame what happened to him and to live through it. It will be a difficult rehabilitation period for him."

Suzanne was not prepared for this, as she was not aware of his prognosis. "Thank you ma'am, Francisco is in my prayers."

Suzanne took a deep breath and slowly let it out as she started her journey to see Chico.

Making her way carefully to ICU, Suzanne stopped by the door that indicated its destination.

"Oh God, give me the strength to get through this," Suzanne opened the ICU doors and looked around for Chico's bed.

"May I help you Sister?" One of the many nurses was checking on the patients

"I'm looking for a Francisco Rodriguez, I've come to pray at his bed side," Suzanne quietly said.

"Yes, Francisco what a sad situation he is in. We were lucky he made it through the night. His bed is on the far right the last one".

"Thank you Ma'am, God Bless you" Suzanne took in a deep breath making each step she took seem like an eternity.

Suzanne arrived to Chico's bed. Closing her eyes Suzanne quickly prayed she would get through this out getting too emotional.

Suzanne quietly opened the drape as she witnessed Chico lying still motionless as the respirator assisted his breathing. Suzanne feared this moment as she covered her mouth to hide her emotions regarding seeing Chico in this condition. Tears steaming down her face she slowly walked up behind Ed.

Ed sat on the chair next to Chico's waist resting his head upon his hands he leaned towards Chico as he grieved for him. "Chico, Chico," Ed wiping his eyes quietly whined.

Suzanne couldn't take seeing Ed like this. Suzanne wiped her eyes as she desperately tried to cry quietly. Taking a few steps forward Suzanne had no other response but to rest her hand upon Ed's shoulder.

Ed continued to weep as he consciously realized a hand embraced him. Grasping the hand that embraced him Ed turned his head to see who was with him.

"Hello, Sister," Ed whispered.

"Sir, I've come here to pray for Francisco," Suzanne walked towards Chico and looked at his tattered body.

Suzanne brushed her hand across his face. "Chico, I'm so sorry, I never meant it to happen this way." Suzanne couldn't take it any longer as she began to get really upset.

Ed witnessed her sadness and walked up to her placing his hand on her arm. "Sister I never thought I'd have to go through something like this. Especially with Chico... I 'm sorry his real name is Francisco. His fiancée, myself and dear friends call him Chico."

Suzanne very saddened seeing Chico in his condition turned over to Ed. Crying as she confessed to Ed.

"Ed, It's me Suzanne, once I heard the news about Chico's condition I had to find any way possible to see him".

Ed was shocked, yet happy to see her.

Ed looked at Suzanne as he embraced her. "God, Suzanne, I thought I was never going to see you again," Ed tearfully kissed her cheek.

"Ed, I must ask how is Chico?" Suzanne wiped her eyes witnessing Chico breath through a machine.

"Suz, it doesn't look good. Not good at all," Ed broke down as he grasped her hands. Ed rubbed her hands in response to her visit. Ed felt her hands and lifted them towards his face.

Ed looked confused at Suzanne's left hand. "Suzanne, what's this?"

Suzanne didn't prepare for this as she began to cry guiding Ed to the end of Chico's bed so he wouldn't hear.

"Ed, when Mando interrupted our wedding after binding my hands together and taking Edina. He, he drove straight to Vegas forcing me into getting married to him," Suzanne quietly said.

"After the ceremony Mando insisted that I was never ever going to see Chico again. Mando began to show a tender side and comfort, that led me to...."

Ed looked at Suzanne. "Led you to what Suzanne? Are you saying what I think your saying? You haven't fallen for him have you?"

"Oh God Ed, I have started having strong feelings for Mando ever since he had taken me away from Chico. He convinced me that I was never ever going to see Chico again. He has been quite moody yet comforting. Ed, Mando was so insistent that I was never going to see Chico again. If I did, Edina and myself would live to regret it."

Ed, saddened at what he heard, felt betrayed. "Suzanne, after all you and Chico have been through." Ed wiped his eyes in sadness.

"Chico is going to be crushed Suzanne. You know how much he adores you and Edina."

Suzanne placed her hand on his hoping he would understand as Ed pushed her hand away. Ed rose up walked away as Suzanne followed him.

"How could you do this to Chico, Suzanne?" Ed became bitter towards her.

"Ed, Mando was very threatening to me and Edina if I didn't follow his desires," Suzanne struggled to realize her fears.

"Ed you have no idea what it was like being taken out of your will away from someone you love, then be told you will never ever see them again." Suzanne cried as she was reminded of her wedding day with Chico.

"Ed, Mando convinced me that it was destined for us to be together." Suzanne cried.

Ed shook his head in disbelief. "Suzanne, Mando has done quite a number on you. You may think he adores you. He is a very controlling person. I remember when he was able to convince Chico of that run he had to do concerning the mufflers late at night. When all Mando wanted was some time alone with you. Hearing Chico scream Oh My God! when he found Mando in bed with you was frightening enough, Suzanne."

Suzanne walked over to Ed trying to reason with him." But Ed...Chico knew how much I cared about Mando. Chico nor I didn't know it would come this far."

Ed was distraught, as he became emotional. "Didn't know what Suzanne, if you have feelings for Mando, then why are you here with Chico?"

"Ed, I love Chico as much if not more then Mando. You've got to realize, once you're trapped into a relationship you have no choice but to got on with your life".

"Trapped? What do you mean trapped?" Ed was outraged. "God Suzanne, I thought you and Chico cared for each other."

Suzanne pulled Ed aside as he began to walk away. "Ed, Chico means so much to me. I felt trapped when Mando disrupted our wedding and took me to Vegas. Ed, I had no way of backing out of this!"

"How can you say you have feelings for Mando and for Chico? I need to go take a walk." Ed, outraged, got up off his chair leaving the ICU area.

Suzanne sat on the chair thinking of how Ed had thought of her now. Struggling to face reality of Mando and Chico Suzanne decided to go see Chico. Rising up off her chair she quietly thought of what memories Chico had given her as well as Edina and their upcoming baby.

Quickly a bunch of nurses ran out of the area locating a doctor. "Come quickly he's alert. He's waken up!"

Suzanne watched as the doctors and nurses rushed into the ICU ward.

"What's going on?" Suzanne asked as a nurse rushed out.

"Be thankful youre here, Sister. A miracle has just happened." Another nurse approached Suzanne.

"Sister! Francisco is alert at the moment."

"What?" Suzanne rushed in the ICU Ward.

Carefully easing her way into the ICU area she got a closer look at Chico. Suzanne, full of emotion, covered her mouth as she witnessed Chico's opened eyes.

"Dear God!" Suzanne slowly, carefully, walked towards near his bed as she witnessed him.

Suzanne carefully placed her hand on his long slender fingers hoping he would respond. Ed ran into the room after hearing the news of Chico's current condition.

Suzanne turned her head as Ed came in and motioned him to be careful about her appearance.

Chico's eyes wandered as he tried to visually witness what was around him. Swallowing hard, Chico tried to speak.

"Sister! What am I doing here?" Chico confused as the bright light shining upon him, tearfully looked around.

Suzanne turned around as she looked at Chico. "Francisco, you've been involved in a serious accident." Suzanne gently rubbed her hand upon his forehead.

"Sister.... " Chico tried to comprehend what had happen to him. "Who is Francisco?"

Suzanne worried, as well did Ed who stayed far behind her.

"Oh God he has no idea who he is." Ed approached closer to Suzanne and Chico.

"Maybe he'll remember something as he gets his thoughts together," Ed whispered to Suzanne.

"Francisco, do you have any recollection of what happened?" Suzanne gently rubbed Chico's hand trying to sooth his fear of being here.

"Sister, I... don't remember anything? I don't know where I live, if I have a girl friend or a wife for that matter?"

Ed placed his hand on the bed railing trying to get Chico's attention. Chico looked at Ed. "Who are you?"

Ed worried as he witnessed Chico. "You don't remember me? I'm Ed, Ed Brown your boss down at the garage."

Chico curiously looked at him as he began to get upset. "I don't know you! I don't know who any of you are!"

Chico agitated began to get angry. Covering his head with his hands, angrily swung them around. "I don't know who I am, or why I'm here!"

Suzanne, fearing how Chico was acting, ran for a nurse as one was heading their way after hearing Chico.

"He doesn't know who he is? He doesn't remember anything!" Suzanne cried. Ed hurried outside the room after Chico's outburst, looking for some help.

The nurse's yelled for assistance, as more nurses and doctors came in to restrain him and sedate him.

Several nurses came in the ICU area as they approached Chico, struggling to hold him down. Chico tried to fight all he could through the pain of his injuries.

Gripping his head in shear frustration as Chico struggled to try to remember anything that he could, Chico cried for help. "Oh God help me remember someone or something!"

Several nurses continued to carefully restrain him as one doctor approach Chico with a needle.

Suzanne walked in by Chico's area looking from behind as she witnessed the doctor sedate him.

Chico, still trying to struggle, slowly gave in to the injection.

"There that should hold him for a while. Get some restraints on him. It's possible he'll react this way again as soon as the drug wears off."

Suzanne rushed to the doctor. "Doctor why do you have to restrain him. He seems so helpless?"

"Sister, with the severity of his injuries near the spine, any wrong move could put him into permanent paralysis."

Suzanne saddened watched Chico lay motionless from the injection. Suzanne grabbed a chair and sat next to Chico.

Grasping Chico's hand Suzanne prayed Chico could some how remember who he was. Two nurses came in quietly and started to restrain Chico. Attaching restraints on his wrists, waist and ankles, Suzanne wondered if there was any hope at all for Chico's recovery

Suzanne sat there watching Chico as she constantly prayed for him. Ed walked in grabbed a chair and sat next to Suzanne.

"Ed, he became so hysterical when he didn't know who he was, they had to restrain and sedate him," Suzanne cried and leaned over to Ed.

Seeing Chico in this condition was too much on Ed as he tearfully watched him. " I just can't bear to see him like this Suzanne. He looks so helpless."

Ed wiped his eyes as he was choked from emotion. "God I hope he pulls through this".

Ed thought it over as he leaned over to Suzanne. "Suz, please forgive me about the out burst earlier regarding Mando. It was too much of a blow on my part hearing that you two got married."

"For Chico's sake lets keep our private lives quiet. If he does hear or find out other wise about you and Mando, he may remember something and that could lead to trouble."

"Ed, please take a break I'll watch Chico for awhile. I have Edina Louise in the daycare center in the Convent. I'm sure she would be glad to see you if you would like to stop by."

Ed lightened up when Suzanne mentioned about Edina. " That would be nice Suz. How is she handling it?"

"Ed, she's been very cranky, yet Mando seems to have taken a liking to her as well as she has to him. I just hope she hasn't forgotten about her father.

Ed had an idea. "I'll be right back Suz, I will be bringing back Edina."

"Ed, what if she gets recognized?" Suzanne stood up, as Ed was about to leave.

"Suz, don't worry I have an idea."

Suzanne continued to sit by Chico's bedside and pray for Chico.

Ed walked in with Edina. " Edina your father has been in a bad accident." Ed wiped his eyes as he held Edina. Ed leaned Edina over to Chico. Edina reached for Chico's nose.

"No no, Edina, we must not bother your daddy." Edina smiled as she looked at Chico.

"Daddy!" Edina yelled.

Suzanne and Ed looked at each other. "Her first words Ed! She spoke of her father." Suzanne was relieved to realize she still remembered her father.

Chico started to stir as he heard Edina babble daddy. Slowly opening his eyes he looked at Edina smiling.

"Sister, what a darling little girl. Who does she belong too?" Chico smiled.

Ed motioned Suzanne back to him. "Francisco, she is your daughter. Her name is Edina Louise Rodriguez. You and your fiancée named her after myself and a good friend of yours, Louie Wilson."

Chico looked at Suzanne and Ed puzzled. "Man I wish I knew who you were talking about....

So this is my daughter?"

Suzanne leaned over to Chico as she used a wet towel to wipe Chico's forehead. Suzanne continues to wipe his face as he stopped her.

Suzanne fearing Chico was going to be emotional Suzanne eyed the call button for the nurse.

Chico grasped Suzanne's hand. "Sister, I'm afraid I'll never find my identity."

Suzanne, saddened, embraced Chico's chin feeling his warm side burns. Lightly brushing them with her thumb, she wished she and Chico were a family again.

"Francisco, there is always hope for a miracle." Suzanne's eyes were tearing up from seeing Chico again.

"Sister, have you ever felt like you've been missing someone?"

Suzanne almost broke into tears as she thought of losing Edina and Chico to Mando.

"Yes, Francisco, there was a time in my life when the most precious of all gifts were taken away with me. I thought and was convinced I was never going to see them again.... till now"

"Believe in miracles, Francisco, I believe and have seen miracles. Someday you will too."

Suzanne carefully covered Chico with another blanket, resting the blanket over him, smelling his familiar scent as she covered him. Her hands lightly touched this torso.

Chico looked at Suzanne curiously. " You know something Sister? You remind me of someone."

Suzanne stunned at his remark. "Really? An old girl friend perhaps?" Suzanne tried to kid around.

"Something is fuzzy about this Sister. You do remind me of someone."

Suzanne looked at Chico trying to fight any emotion she was feeling regarding Chico's remark.

Chico grasped Suzanne's hand for comfort only to find a ring on her finger.

"Sister, I don't recall any nuns that wore wedding bands?" Chico looked curiously.

Chico tried to remember something. "I wonder if I was supposed to be married?"

Suzanne couldn't take it anymore as she began to cry.

Chico witnessed her tears grasping her hand tighter. "Sister, have I upset you in any way?"

Suzanne wiped her eyes. " Chico, if you could only remember".

"Remember what Suzanne?" Chico curiously tried so hard to remember.

"Chico, I can't take it anymore!" Suzanne removed her Nuns headpiece as she fluffed her hair.

"Chico, we were supposed to be married till Mando interrupted our wedding and took me along with your daughter Edina way from you." Suzanne leaned over to Chico and cried on his shoulder.

Chico embraced her out of sympathy. Ed walked in to Chico's area shocked at what he had seen.

"Suzanne!" Ed quietly said as he witnessed the moment between Chico and Suzanne.

"I'm sorry sir, this lady says we were supposed to be married." Chico's long slender fingers embraced Suzanne's arm. Sliding down towards her wrist Chico's fingers felt the bracelet he once gave her.

Chico's long slender fingers twirled the heart shaped charms. Noticing them he pulled Suzanne's wrist closer to him to get a closer look at the charms hanging from the bracelet.

"Three hearts, one with the name Edina Louise, Chico and one is...blank?"

Tears steaming down her face Suzanne reminded Chico of her pregnancy. "Chico shortly after Christmas you gave me the news of me being pregnant. We are having a baby, Chico."

Chico was shocked as he tried so desperately to remember.

Suzanne cried as she hoped Chico would remember. "Chico you told me in Spanish the night you surprised me with gifts. Chico you said Edina va a ser una hermana grande! ( Edina is going to be a big sister!)"

Chico listened to what Suzanne had told him.

"I remember being very angry about something about a baby?" Chico brushing his hair back with his hands concentrated so hard to remember.

Suzanne choked up as she heard him mention his anger. "Chico you were angry thinking that Edina Louise, our daughter..."

"...Was Mando's?" Chico questioned Suzanne as he pointed to her.

"Oh My God Chico! Yes!" Suzanne grasped his hand.

"Well is it? Is it mine or Mando's?" Chico tried to make everything out.

"Chico, the child is yours. You received word from the doctor and told me when I called you from the store about me being kidnapped by Mando."

Chico smiled was relieved to remember something. Still something was troubling him. "Suzanne if we were to be married and the child you are carrying is mine, why then are you married to Mando?"

Suzanne wept as she thought of their wedding day. "Chico, I was taken against my will on our wedding day. Mando so desperately wants Edina and I to be together as a family. He drove us to Vegas while I was bound together. He convinced me that I was never going to see you again."

"Suzanne, I have to ask you something. Do you love him?" Chico struggled to piece everything together that was said to him.

"Chico, I love you." Suzanne, looking down, gripped the bed railing as she controlled her feelings.

"Suzanne I need to know. Do you love Mando? Will this marriage of yours last?" Placing his hand upon hers Chico needed an answer.

Suzanne struggled to answer. "Chico, I love you as much as I love Mando, if not more."

Chico concerned with what he was hearing. "Suzanne, if you and Mando are in love, I don't want to come between you two."

Suzanne took hold of Chico's hand and embraced it. "Chico, please. I need you back in my life!"

"I am certain you do Suzanne, but if it was meant for you and Mando to be together I couldn't bear breaking you two up."

Chico looked the other way as he became distant, realizing his chance with Suzanne was over. "Please Suzanne, please leave....".

Suzanne was shocked to hear Chico ask her to leave.

"That's it? Our life together is over?" Suzanne started to cry.

Chico shook his head yes, with his hand motioned her away from his area.

In tears Suzanne left the room. "What have I done? Chico doesn't want me in his life anymore."

Suzanne sat down on the sofa in the waiting room as Ed and Edina walked by. Suzanne covered her face as she began to cry.

Ed picked up Edina and as he spotted Suzanne. Edina started to babble her new word she learned earlier. "Daddy, Daddy".

Suzanne looked up at Ed and Edina as she broke down.

Ed hurried over to Suzanne. " What's wrong? Is Chico...alright?"

Suzanne wiped her eyes. "Ed, Chico is starting to remember a few things. He noticed the bracelet and my wedding ring."

Suzanne tried to control her breathing. "Ed, he's convinced that I don't really love him and believes I should stay with Mando."

Putting his arm around Suzanne, Ed tried to comfort her. "Maybe it's for the better, Suz. If Chico is starting to remember things here and there, maybe you should lay low for a while".

"Oh God, Ed, but Edina needs her father. As much as I need Chico."

The doctor, along with Ed, came in to see Chico. "Well Francisco, now that you are alert I feel you should start with your rehabilitation."

"Rehab?" Chico asked.

"Yes, with the accident you have lost muscle tissue that needs to be rehabilitated to increase in muscle structure."

"But Doc, I feel fine?" Chico said.

"Francisco you've been lying in bed for a while we need to measure your muscle structure and bone mass that was possibly lost from the accident."

Chico struggled to remember the accident.

"Francisco do you remember what happened?"

"No, Doc. I'm afraid not".

"Francisco you were thrown and pinned against a brick building at a high rate of speed. You are lucky to be alive, Mr. Rodriguez."

"A physical therapist will be assisting you in your therapy."

"Is she cute?" Chico asked.

"Is who cute Mr. Rodriguez?" Doctor filled out his forms for Chico's therapy.

"You will soon find out shortly," the doctor said as the nurse's aid got ready to wheel Chico away to therapy.

As the nurse wheeled the chair in, two orderlies followed ready to assist in lifting Chico onto the chair.

"Ready Mr. Rodriguez?" The orderlies, one on each side of Chico, helped him off the bed and onto the chair.

Chico felt dizzy as he sat on the chair. Chico rolled his head back trying to keep from feeling ill.

Chico was wheeled to the therapist room. As he got ready for his therapy Ed wandered around wondering where Chico was.

"Where is Chico? " Ed asked around as Suzanne followed looking for Chico also.

"Ed, where did they take him?" Suzanne wondered as she cornered the nurse leaving the area.

"He's in therapy. He's in rehab. Down the hall elevator to the 2nd floor."

Ed and Suzanne looked for the nearest elevator.

*****

Wheeling down towards the physical therapy, the nurse rolled Chico into the exercise area.

"Hello Mr. Rodriguez. I'm Sharon, I'll be your therapist for your rehabilitation."

Chico smiled as he was wheeled over to the parallel bars.

"Ok, Mr. Rodriguez. Is it ok that I call you Francisco?" asked Sharon.

"You can call me anything you want" Chico smiled as he winked at her.

Sharon, smiling, gave Chico a smirk. "Ok, Francisco. Let's see how your balance is today." Sharon and the other therapist helped Chico up as he got a grip on the bars.

One of the assistants helped Chico up and out of his chair. "Hey, take it easy over there, brother. I plan to make this a walk in the park!"

Chico gripped the bars, as Sharon was behind him to help support him.

"Ok Francisco. When ever you're ready we'll check your balance and stability."

"Piece of cake, piece of cake!" Chico got his grip together as he positioned his feet. Lifting his left foot he moved it forward. Smiling of his accomplishment of being able to move his leg he then placed it front of him.

As his foot was placed on the floor his leg gave out causing him to lose his balance and collapsed into Sharon's arms.

"Aahhhhh" Chico moaned in pain.

"Are you ok, Francisco?" asked Sharon.

"I think so. Although we should stop meeting like this." Chico, embarrassed, tried to put on the charm.

"Well, Mr. Rodriguez, we need to get back to your therapy". Sharon said as she helped support Chico back to his feet.

Chico looked at Sharon, disappointed. "Mr. Rodriguez? I liked you better when you were less formal Sharon".

"You know, all work and no play makes Francisco a dull boy!" Chico winked at Sharon.

"Now, Mr. Rodriguez, we need to get back to therapy. Besides, what about your girlfriend? I'm sure you want to get back on your feet as soon as possible." Sharon helped support Chico as he tried to stable himself on the bars.

"Well, a girl whom I thought I loved decided to go with someone else. She wanted me back and I told her to get lost."

"Now, Mr. Rodriguez, that wasn't very nice of you. What made you think she doesn't love you anymore?" Sharon grasped Chico's waist as he tried to take a step forward.

"She ended up marrying my ex best friend, Sharon. She claims she was taken out of her will."

Sharon concentrating on Chico's therapy couldn't believe what he said. " Your ex girlfriend was the one that got kidnapped at the church?"

"I guess so, it's still all fuzzy to me." Chico looked at Sharon as he slowly moved his hands forward down the pole.

"So then actually she didn't freely go with someone else, she went against her will, Francisco."

"Yeah I suppose, but she ended up marrying him Sharon. I don't want to talk about that anymore. Let's talk about us?" Chico cringing as he struggled to smiled.

"Us?" Sharon asked.

Chico smiled approached Sharon with his charm. "Yeah, how about it, Sharon. You me, the way it should be?" Chico smiled as he struggled to move his leg.

Chico slipped as he fell forward on Sharon. Leaning his head on her shoulder he turned and kissed her.

"Francisco we need to work on your therapy" Sharon helped him up.

"Ah come on Sharon" Chico began to pucker up wanting to kiss her again just as Ed walked with Suzanne and Edina.

"Geesh, Ed I see he was serious about breaking up with me."

Ed looked at Chico puckering up and hurried over to Sharon. "Hey get your hands off her!"

"What?" Chico turned to look to see who yelled at him.

Suzanne shook her head in disbelief witnessing Chico.

"Dad! What are you doing here? " Sharon said.

"Dad?" Chico questioned Sharon.

Sharon helped Chico support himself against the bars as she adjust herself.

"Mr. Rodriguez, this is my father, Edward Brown."

"Sharon, I've known Chico, I mean Francisco for years. He is or was my best mechanic until the accident". Ed was concerned about Chico approaching her.

"What makes you think I'm not a great mechanic anymore?" Chico gratefully tried to show his accomplishment of standing.

"Well If you can't remember who you are, how are you going to remember how to fix a carburetor?"

Ed tapped Chico on the arm. "Besides, I already know you're a great mechanic, Chico!"

"Why do you call me Chico?" Chico asked Ed.

"That's the name you told me since you rolled in on your damn bicycle in my garage."

"Well enough of that? Suzanne, Edina and I were looking for you and were told you were over here."

Chico looked over to Suzanne. " I, I don't want to see this Suzanne anymore sir".

Ed was shocked to hear Chico speak of her that way as Suzanne sadly walked away.

"Why Chico? She is the mother of your daughter Edina and another one on the way." Ed tried to reason with Chico.

"She left me for some fella named Mando. That's why." Chico became angry.

"Left you? She was taken away from you. I seen it all happen Chico." Ed held Chico back.

"She still loves you Chico, I know it. Suzanne wouldn't do anything to hurt you, Edina or the baby."

Chico grabbed Ed's hand off of him, tearing up from the anger inside him. "Ed I spoke with her regarding the relationship between her Mando and myself. Ed, I told her to leave, I don't want her a part of my life anymore".

Shocked to hear Chico's remark Ed became sad. "You just kicked her out of your life! The mother of your child for God sakes. Chico, she is a part of my life as she is yours"! Ed was devastated.

"I just can't believe you've done this. Getting rid of her like that!" Ed covered his eyes, fearing he'd never see Suzanne and Edina ever again.

*****

Suzanne, with Edina, left the hospital devastated that Chico didn't anything to do with her life anymore.

Suzanne arrived back at Mando's apartment. Getting herself back into the life with Mando she wondered if there was actual hope that this marriage to Mando could work out.

Placing Edina in her crib she decided to rest on the couch after a grueling day at the hospital.

A few hours went by as the lock on the door sounded as the bolt unlocked on the door. Suzanne rose after hearing the scratch of keys.

The door opened up finding Mando come inside. Suzanne was at least happy to see him for a change especially after today.

Suzanne rushed to Mando ready to great him. "You're back already?" Suzanne smiled as she embraced Mando, wrapping her arms around him.

Mando was happy yet surprised to see her especially in the mood she was in.

"Yeah Suzanne, I was able to make good money in TJ." Mando embraced her, his fingers feeling her hair. "It's good to be back home." Mando continued to hug her as he placed his awaiting lips upon hers.

"Suz, you seem like you really missed me?" Mando smiled. Mando held her hand, kissing it ever so softly.

"Mando, it's been a rough couple of days here since you've been gone. I need to be with someone I know who loves me is all." Suzanne hugged Mando.

Mando lightly touched Suzanne's cheek as he kissed her, smiling ever so. He welcomed her as he extended his hand towards hers.

"C'mon Suz" Mando motioned to her what he was wanting as he tilted his head towards the bedroom.

Suzanne followed Mando to the bedroom as the two of them embraced. "Suz, there are exciting opportunities in Tijuana. I would like to discuss this more with you about us possibly moving there".

"Moving there?" Suzanne was in disbelief.

"Yeah, but it won't be for a while though." Mando

Mando embracing Suzanne looked into her eyes. "Suzanne, I felt our few days apart were like an eternity." Mando embraced her as he kissed her.

Suzanne welcomed his kiss as she began to feel queasy.

"Suzanne are you ok?" Mando felt her forehead.

Suzanne, knowing that Chico didn't want anything to do with her, decided to tell Mando about her pregnancy.

"Mando, I haven't been feeling well. I'm pregnant." Suzanne feared of Mando behavior.

"Pregnant?" Mando smiled as he embraced her." That's my girl! We will celebrate this wondrous event Suzanne. I know damn well this baby is definitely my child." Mando grasped Suzanne's chin and kissed her.

Suzanne embraced Mando as she felt some comfort from him. Wishing somehow that Chico would somehow realize why things happened the way they did.

After Mando and Suzanne spent a quiet time together, Mando rose to check on Edina.

Mando picked up Edina and smiled. "Edina, es bueno verle otra vez!" (Edina, it's good to see you again!)

Kissing Edina, Mando placed her back in her crib. Mando turned on the radio as he sat down and relaxed.

"Police have a suspect in custody regarding the hit and run that occurred in East LA." Mando, focusing on the newsbreak, couldn't believe it.

"Did you hear that Suzanne?" Mando rose up quickly and hurried over to Suzanne who was in the kitchen.

"Yeah, I wonder who it was they got?" Suzanne wondered.

"Who cares! I'm in the clear now!" Mando smiled raised his hands in victory .

"I'd still would be careful, though, what if Chico remembers anything about the accident?" Suzanne shouted over to Mando then realized what she said.

"Remember anything?" Mando rushed over to Suzanne furiously.

Suzanne had to think something quick. "Mando, I've heard on the news that Chico is experiencing memory loss. He doesn't know who he is or what happened for that matter."

"You visited him didn't you!" Mando was angry.

Suzanne moved away from Mando going to the corner of the kitchen.

"Mando, I had to see if he was ok."

Mando paced the kitchen floor ready to blow a gasket. "I told you to lay low till I came back! I hope to God no one recognized you"

"Don't worry Mando, no one recognized me. Except for Ed." Suzanne nervously started to cry.

"Ed had no idea that you had taken me to Vegas to get married Mando." Suzanne wiped her eyes.

"He is very upset that I married you!" Suzanne sat down on the couch and covered her eyes.

"Mando don't worry about Chico either. He figured out about me marrying you and doesn't want nothing to do with you any more!"

Mando stood up worried about remembering the accident. "Oh God, what if he recalls the accident Suz."

"Don't worry Mando, he doesn't remember the accident nor doesn't even recall remembering Ed"

"Mando, Chico told me to get lost and I caught him hitting on Ed's daughter Sharon. Who happens to be Chico's therapist." Suzanne grabbed a chair, sat down by the kitchen, and broke down and cried.

Mando began to laugh hysterically. " He made a move on Ed's daughter?" Mando clapping couldn't control his laughter as he bent over.

"Ed would have been angry to see that!" Mando smiled.

"He was Mando. He wasn't happy at all," Suzanne said.

"Well then Suzanne, even though we are married. I do believe then you are officially mine now that Chico doesn't want anything to do with you".

" Please Mando, I'm very saddened about this and so is Ed. Ed couldn't believe how Chico treated me during his therapy session."

"Let's just get on with our lives now. Everything seems to be going our way." Mando, grasping Suzanne's hand, felt relieved now about the turn of events that happen since he was gone.

*****

Chico was taken back to his room after his grueling Physical therapy. "Hey Brother, how about doin' another brother a favor." Chico got positioned back into his bed by two orderlies.

They continued to help him back in bed as they placed the braces back on him.

"Why are you strapping me in again?" Chico looked all over as they hooked him up in the braces.

"Just a precaution Mr. Rodriguez, after your therapy we need to have you secure as your muscles get used to the therapy. If your not careful, you could easily damage your spine after such a work out."

Chico motioned one of the orderly's closer to him. "How about helping' a brother out!" Chico looked around to see if his doctor was coming in.

"What is the problem Mr. Rodriguez?" The orderly walked towards him.

" There's no problem. I just want that Sharon's phone number," Chico winked.

"Sharon your therapist?" they asked. "OOOOO" they shouted as they laughed at Chico.

Later Chico was settled in his room as Sharon walked in and gave him some exercises to do while he was in his bed.

"Mr. Rodriguez. I have a few exercises that will help strengthen your legs till your next therapy session". Sharon walked over to Chico's right side of the bed as she handed him a few sheets of paper that were full of exercises.

Chico glanced at the exercises.'" Sharon I don't understand this one?" Chico pointed to the particular exercise.

Sharon leaned over to get a closer look at the one Chico claimed he didn't understand. "Which one Mr. Rodriguez?"

"This one." Chico put his hand behind her neck pulling her closer to him. Kissing her ever so softly, he released.

Chico slowly released from Sharon. "Oh? So that's how it's done, huh Sharon". Chico smiled.

"Francisco, I mean Mr. Rodriguez. Please we need to work on your rehab." Sharon tried to pull away from Chico but struggled.

"Honey this is my rehab" Chico still with his arm around her winked at Sharon.

Chico kissed Sharon again this time grasping her butt as Ed walked in.

"What's going on in here!" Ed shouted.

Chico and Sharon released. Sharon tried to regain her composer.

"Sharon, I would like to see you at the waiting room please."

Ed pointed to the direction as Sharon followed him out of Chico's room.

Chico was disappointed that Ed took Sharon away from him yelled out to her as they were leaving.

"Ah come on Sharon honey. I have four words that I know you'll enjoy! HA - LA - DAY - INN!"

Ed shook his head in disbelief as he continued to escort Sharon into the waiting room.

"Sit down!" Ed pointed to the couch next to him.

"What ever you are doing to Chico I want it to stop!"

"Dad, I'm just doing my job. Francisco is the one who is hitting on me".

"Sharon, whether you realize it or not, he does have a daughter and one on the way".

Ed worried about Chico's behavior. "Maybe I better see a doctor about his obnoxious behavior. He's normally never this out in the open. Even before he met Suzanne. Well at least from what I've known about".

Ed continued to discuss to Sharon about Chico when one of the doctors on call walked by them.

"Say listen Doc?" Ed motioned the doctor to where they were seated.

"Yes, your Francisco's guardian, is that correct?" Paging through Chico's chart he stumbled upon Ed's personal information.

"Yes Doc, that is correct. This is my daughter Sharon". Ed introduced her to him.

"Yes I know Sharon, she's quite a gal. What can I do for you...." The doctor paged through Chico's information." Mr. Brown. Ed is it?"

"Yeah Doc, I'm concerned about Chico's, I mean Francisco behavior. He's acting quite not himself lately?"

"How so Mr., Brown?" The doctor asked.

"Doc, he's acting like a completely different person." Ed fidgeted around nervously.

"Mr. Brown, I understand what your saying. The trauma from the accident has not only caused him to struggle with his physical therapy. He is experiencing some sort of psychological set back where he is trying to identify with himself".

Ed struggled with the Doctors remark. "I wish some how he was back to his old self again".

"Mr. Brown with the force of the injury to the head that lead him to the concussion. He is experiencing some trauma that has resulted in his unusual behavior. Time and therapy will eventually give his memory back".

The doctor rose off the couch." Mr. Brown, please be prepared for a long road ahead. Physically and mentally".

Ed stood up and shook hands with the doctor. "Thank you Doc"

Ed sat down buried his head in his hands and feared the worst for Chico's emotional yet physical recovery.

*****

Suzanne was feeling ill as she woke in the morning. Rising up to turn on the TV, she watched the local morning news. Suzanne watched as they replayed the accident regarding Chico, stating about who they had in custody.

"Oh God I will never forget that day as long as I live. I wish Chico would regain his memory back fully".

A picture showed the alleged suspect they caught. Suzanne got a closer look at the TV screen.

"I don't believe it. He looks just exactly like Mando!" Suzanne rubbed her eyes after seeing the resemblance. "I guess I can understand how Mando can be so happy now."

The phone rang, as Suzanne was about to retrieve it. Mando rushed to the phone. "I'll get it Suz, it could be important."

"Yeah...Really? When can I be there... I'll leave as soon as I can! Later Amigo!" Mando hung up the phone.

"Who was that?" Suzanne asked.

"Suz, I gotta go back to TJ. I have the opportunity to make more money again. Hopefully this will be it for a while. Possibly we then wont have to move there." Mando hustled to get his coat on and grabbed his keys.

"Well that will be good to know. I wasn't really thrilled about moving to Tijuana, Mando." Suzanne rose up from the couch and walked with Mando towards the door.

"I'll back in a couple days Suzanne. Please be careful." Mando embraced her as kissed her goodbye.

Suzanne wondered again what kind of business Mando was getting into again. "God, I hope he's not doing anything illegal"

Trying anyway possible not to worry about Mando's job opportunity, Suzanne looked into the newspaper.

Articles regarding the accident were still appearing in the paper, showing pictures of the scene of the accident. Suzanne kept getting a flash back of when she felt the jolt of the car upon hitting Chico.

Suzanne rubbed her eyes tried to get the vision out of her mind of Chico lying helplessly on the ground. Suzanne started to get upset thinking of Chico's condition and how he treated her at the hospital.

"God Chico, I wish you could understand. I still love you." Suzanne's emotions began to toy with her.

Suzanne struggled with the feelings she was having for Chico again. Looking up she pleaded to God for some kind of answer. " Help Chico understand as well as I."

Thinking of Chico Suzanne decided to take another trip to the hospital. Grabbing the outfit she wore at the hospital Suzanne began to dress herself as a nun.

Edina was asleep as she was able to get her set to go the hospital.

Arriving to the hospital, Suzanne dropped off Edina at the daycare center located in the hospital.

Suzanne slowly made her way to the ICU area where Chico was located. Finding Ed in the waiting room she approached him.

"Ed." Suzanne noticed Ed was struggling with Chico's recovery. Ed looked up at Suzanne.

"Suz, I don't know what to do anymore. According to the doctors, Chico's recovery could take a long time physically and mentally."

Suzanne embraced Ed as he tearfully excepted her greeting. "Ed please, I want to try and see him again."

"Are you sure about that Suzanne? After he told you to get lost?" Ed embraced her hand for comfort.

"Ed, I know how Chico feels, I guess I can't blame him. Who knows if he will even remember me."

Ed embraced her. "I understand Suz. I'll wait here and leave you two alone."

Suzanne made her way in ICU finding her way around towards Chico's bed. Hearing the scuffle of doctors, Suzanne also heard Chico having a conversation.

"C'mon honey, Daddy needs doctoring'". Chico said as he swatted one of the nurse's assistants on her rear end.

The nurse's assistant hurried out blushing from Chico's pass he made to her.

Suzanne opened the drape from the other side of his bed as Chico noticed her. "Hey Sister you want some of me too?" Chico winked at Suzanne.

"Francisco do you remember my last visit with you?" Suzanne slowly approached him.

Chico looked at Suzanne, slowly studying her. "No sister I don't recall?"

Suzanne started to think he was may be suffering from short-term memory loss resulted in the accident.

Sitting on the chair by Chico's side Suzanne prepared herself as a nun. "Francisco, is there a special prayer I can pray for you?"

Grasping Chico's hand she hoped maybe something from his past would arise.

"Pray that I can get outta here soon, Sister" Chico put his other hand in top of hers. Suzanne then placed her other hand resting on top of his.

Chico heard the jingle of the charms from the bracelet he once gave her.

Chico let go of Suzanne's hand lifting the charms up with his fingers.

"Sister, this looks familiar?" Chico turned her wrist. Reading the inscriptions on the hearts.

"Edina Louise, one that's blank, one here that is named Chico." Chico let go of her wrist.

Looking at Suzanne he wondered about the name Chico. "Sister is that name Chico someone you know, someone you love perhaps?"

Suzanne was nervously trying to contain her composer. "Yes, Francisco. A loving, caring, man who is your age was a part of my life at one time."

Chico looked at Suzanne as her eyes began to tear up. "I'm sorry sister if I have upset you in any way." Chico grasped her hands and held them tight.

"If it isn't too personal may I ask what happened?" Chico gently brushed the top of her hand.

Suzanne took in a deep breath and let it out.

"Chico, I mean Francisco" Suzanne started to tell her side of the story till Chico interrupted her.

"Chico? I have heard that name before? Is that my real name?" Chico tried desperately to piece it together.

"One time Francisco, I was supposed to be married to a loving caring young man. We had a child together a little girl named Edina...."

"Edina? Kinda like after a man named Ed?" Chico was thinking.

"Yes! Well, we were supposed to be married then a good friend whom so we thought took me away along with our daughter to Vegas. I was kidnapped. This loving carding man whom I hoped to be married watched me be taken away out of my will."

Covering her eyes Suzanne leaned on the bed railing starting to cry.

"Francisco does any of this remind you of anything?" Suzanne rose her head placing her hand on his.

"Was I the one that watched you be taken away at a church?" Chico began to piece things together.

"Yes, you were there. After Mando slugged you, you passed out as Mando wrapped the cord around my wrists and dragged me away."

"I remember waking up hearing someone scream Chico?" Chico asked

"Yes! I was being pulled away and yelled for your help Chico."

"Has this Mando hurt you in any way?" Chico became concerned.

"Chico, he took me to Vegas and forced me into marrying him!"

Chico saddened as he remembered visioning her being taken away. "So that is what happened."

"So you ended up marrying Mando?" Chico saddened suddenly turned angry as he tried to comprehend what Suzanne said.

"You do love him! I knew there was something different about you when Mando was around!" Angrily Chico twisted his bed sheets.

"Damn it Suzanne I thought you loved me!" Chico upset started to shake with the reality of losing her.

Suzanne reached out her hand to embrace Chico's cheek till he stopped her. Grasping her wrist tightly he held her back from touching him.

"Chico please! I love you" Suzanne felt upset from Chico's anger and force of his grip.

"No you don't! You just wanted me around because of Edina!" Chico angrily looked around finding a pitcher of water along with other hospital equipment. Chico became angry.

"I thought you loved me!" Chico, angry, threw a water cup as well as the pitcher full of water.

Chico sat up straight trying to fight the pain he was in and angrily swung his hands near Suzanne.

Chico began to get upset as tears ran down his eyes. Dropping back down on his bed he lay there motionless staring at the ceiling.

"Suzanne, get out! You never needed me. I don't need you anymore!" Chico forgetting his pain rose up with all he could as angrily pushed Suzanne away from him. Grasping his bed rail Chico tried to get out of bed.

Chico continued to push Suzanne away as he struggled to hold on to the bed rail.

Suzanne tried to reason with him. "Chico please. I love you more then anything in the world." Suzanne grasped Chico trying to position him back to his bed.

Chico began grasping her left hand. "No you don't Suzanne, this ring on your finger proves it!" Chico pushed her hand away from him.

Chico began to feel spasms going through his legs as his legs started to shake. Chico feared the pain that was going throughout his legs heading up towards his torso. Collapsing from the pain he fell upon Suzanne as she tried desperately to hold on to him. Chico's excessive body weight was too much for her so suddenly.

"Some one help me please!" Suzanne shouted.

Several nurses hurried over as well as doctors.

"What is he doing out of bed!" the doctor scolded. "We need him restrained again."

Doctors and nurses scurried over restraining him again, adding more support to his waist area so he couldn't move. As the nurses attached the wrists and ankle restraints on him, a doctor motioned Suzanne over to him.

"Sister whatever situation you were in between you and Francisco I think you should leave. He's in a very fragile state right now".

Suzanne looked at Chico struggling as they continued to tighten his restraints, one doctor began to sedate him.

"Chico" Suzanne said as she watched him. "What is going on here? Why are you so angry?"

Suzanne left the ICU area deciding to go home after Chico's outburst. " I just have to face the fact that my relationship with Chico is over." Suzanne feared her future as she went to pick up Edina at the Daycare center.

Later in the afternoon Chico woke up from the sedative that was given to him due to his out burst with Suzanne.

Realizing his outcome with Suzanne and Mando, Chico drifted into a depression.

Chico wept silently as he thought about his hopeless chances with Suzanne and Edina.

"Well Mr. Rodriguez, are you ready for your therapy?" said the nurse's assistant.

"I don't need no therapy! " Chico angrily said. " I just need to die!" Chico violently tried to move his wrists that were restrained.

"Die? Mr. Rodriguez you have a lot to live for".

"Yeah like what do I have to live for? My girl left me for another man, and now because of this damn accident I'm useless!"

"You're not useless, Mr. Rodriguez," as the nurses assistant tried to help loosen Chico's restraints.

"Forget it mama, I'm not going to therapy! It won't help me get my life back the way it used to be so why bother!"

Nurses and orderlies helped move Chico out of his bed and unto a wheel chair. Chico's legs where still bound together to keep him from kicking anyone as they sat him on the seat.

Chico furiously pushed the doctors and nurses away as he tried so hard to wheel himself out of the ICU ward. Pushing the wheels has hard as he could he wheeled out of ICU.

Through the pain of his injuries, Chico wheeled through the waiting room area. Sharon tried to catch up to Chico. "Listen Mama, you can't make me go to therapy!" Chico shouted as he continued to wheel himself away.

Sharon and several nurses hurriedly followed Chico trying to catch up with him.

"Come on Mama, try and catch me!" Chico sarcastically laughed. Zooming through a corridor Chico turned the corner fast as his hands could take him.

Chico turned the corner so fast his wheel chair spun out of control having him slam into a wall. " Ouch!" Chico yelled. Getting himself situated he started to wheel himself out of the way.

The nurses along with Sharon finally caught up with Chico. Chico looked behind him as he called them over.

Blowing kisses to the nurses, Chico tried to get their attention. "Come on honey baby!" Sharon ran over to the other side of Chico as she was able to grab a hold of the handlebars to keep him from moving.

Pulling back anyway she could she was able to keep Chico from moving. Chico tried desperately to continue as Sharon skidded along.

With one big jerk Sharon was able to completely stop the wheel chair from moving. Sharon rushed over to the wheel brakes and locked them on.

Sharon stood right in front of him blocking his path. "What is with you Mr. Rodriguez! I have more important things to do then chase you around this hospital!"

Chico put on his sad puppy dog look as he looked up at Sharon." Ah Sharon, I'm so sorry" Chico then smiled giving Sharon a big toothy grin.

"Come on Mr. Rodriguez, let's put you back in your bed". Sharon said wheeling back to the ICU ward.

A doctor approached Sharon, as she was about to wheel him back in ICU. "You're moving, Mr. Rodriguez"

Chico looked up to the Doctor who spoke to him. "What?"

"You've made enough progress to be put in a private room." The doctor placed his hand on Chico's shoulder.

"Does that mean I get my own private nurse too?" Chico eagerly smiled.

"Yes, you will have special nurses and doctors dealing with your situation, Mr. Rodriguez."

Chico rubbed his hands together. "Hello!"

*****

Suzanne was feeding Edina her supper when she heard the door open up. A little bit nervous about seeing Chico again behind Mando back she rushed over to the door to greet him.

"You're back so soon!" Suzanne reached over before Mando got his foot into their apartment and embraced him.

"Hi Suzy, I'm so happy to be home". Mando embraced Suzanne as he greeted her with a kiss.

"Don't tell me Suz, You visited Chico" Mando asked.

Suzanne began to pull away from Mando.

"Don't worry about it Suzanne, I have been thinking about him lately hoping he is ok. Seeing that I basically got a way with the hit and run ordeal. I feel I can relax a little bit now".

Mando embraced Suzanne, resting his head on her shoulder. "I'm so sorry for being so edgy about everything".

Suzanne's hands ran through Mando's thick hair. "I understand Mando, it has been hard on everyone."

Mando was stirring as he thought about Chico. " Suz, do you think it would be ok to see Chico?"

Suzanne was shocked to hear Mando ask such a question.

"Mando, I don't know. He was very angry about me marrying you and has had some emotional ordeals lately".

"My guess Mando, is to go see him with caution not knowing what to expect".

Mando thought it over as he made his decision. "Well Suz, seeing that the cops have already gotten a suspect. I think it is safe for me to try to at least make a visit".

Suzanne hugged Mando. " I think that will good for all of us. Making some sort of peace with him."

"Do you want to come along with me? I mean he already knows you and I are married." Mando smiled grasped Suzanne's hand.

"Yeah Mando, I believe we both should go through this together". Suzanne lifted Mando's hand kissing it. "However Mando I'll leave you two alone just in case".

Mando embraced her, kissing her, as he was relieved to finally be himself with Suzanne without any worries from Chico or the police.

"Well Suzanne lets go make the best of what we have and pay our respects to Chico. Mando extended his hand to Suzanne as they got ready to go.

Suzanne and Mando holding hands walked in the hospital heading towards the elevator to Chico's room.

As the elevator opened Suzanne and Mando hugged each other comforting each of them for there journey upon seeing Chico again. As they stepped out the elevator Ed walked by.

Ed looked at Mando hold Suzanne's hand. "What are you doing here?"

Mando and Suzanne released as they looked at Ed.

Mando walked up to Ed. "Ed, I've come to pay my respects to Chico"

Ed pulled Mando aside along with Suzanne. "How can you pay your respects to someone you've hurt dearly?"

Mando looked at Ed thinking he knew something of the accident.

"Mando ever since the wedding incident Chico hasn't been the same. He practically was a wreck when you took her away from him on his wedding day". Ed wiped his eyes out of worrying for Chico.

"Mando he was so distraught after losing Suzanne again, I'm not surprised he didn't get hurt prior to this accident. Damn hit and run he was involved in".

Mando grasped Ed's arm. " Ed, I never meant no harm on anyone. I knew deep down Suzanne had meant something to me..."

"You had to take her away from Chico in order to convince her?" Ed shook his head in disbelief.

"Chico, is going through some serious physical, mental, and emotional problems all because of this accident Mando". Ed, saddened, choked up.

Ed angrily looked at Mando as he remarked about the man who hurt Chico. "I hope they fry the son of a bitch that did this to him!"

.

Part 5

Mando feared what Ed had said about the accident. "Yeah, yeah Ed me too. Well I'm going to see Chico now. Nice seeing you Ed."

Mando and Suzanne together, holding hands, left to go towards Chico's room.

As they approached Chico's room Suzanne stopped Mando. "Please, please be prepared for the unexpected." Suzanne hugged Mando, releasing him Suzanne watched Mando take his steps towards Chico's bed.

Mando walked in on his own, lightly knocking on the door of the bathroom.

"Hello Chico?" Mando shyly walked towards Chico's bed as Chico looked at him curiously.

Sore from wiping out on the wheel chair earlier, Chico tried to raise himself up from the pain.

"Ow!" Chico moaned as he looked up at Mando.

Mando walked closer to Chico's bedside. "It's me Mando, remember? We've been amigos forever!" Mando nervously smiled.

Chico looked at Mando obsessively. "Yeah, until you stole my girl away from me!"

Mando feared that he would remember the wedding interruption. "Chico, Suzanne and I were destined to be together."

"Destined? Hah!" Chico was bitter towards Mando.

"Well what is done is done. She wouldn't want a useless man like myself any ways." Chico began to get upset. Chico covered his eyes as tears rolled down his face.

Mando concerned leaned forward and placed his hand on Chico's shoulder. "I'm so sorry with what happen to you. I hope you have a speedy recovery."

Chico wiped his eyes as he heard Mando speak quickly grabbed Mando's hand before he could release from him.

Chico looked up at Mando angrily at him. "If you ever hurt her. So help me God Mando I'll.....!"

Mando frightened by Chico's remark backed off. "Don't worry Chico she is in good hands."

Quietly Suzanne entered Chico's room.

Saddened, Chico looked at Suzanne wishing, he had her back.

"Hi Chico, how are you feeling today?" Suzanne placed a bouquet of flowers on Chico's bed table.

Chico looked at the inscription on the card along with the flowers. "Chico, Get well Soon! Love Mando and Suzanne."

With his fingertips Chico felt the flowers. His eyes began to tear up as he recognized them.

"These look like the ones that you carried down the aisle on our wedding day, Suzanne."

Becoming angry Chico began to think about there wedding day as he wiped his eyes. "How can you two do this to me!" Chico placed the bouquet of flowers on the palm of his hand, angrily tossing them across the room.

Suzanne and Mando ducked as dirt, flowers, and broken pottery flew everywhere.

"Can't you understand I still love you!" Chico hysterically placed his head on his hands and leaned against the rolling bed table in front of him.

Suzanne leaned over to Chico as she tried to reason with him. "Chico, please understand."

Chico looked at Suzanne angrily. "Understand what?! That you were taken away from me? Now because of this accident I'll never be the same?"

"Get out! Just get out!" Chico screamed just as two nurses walked in the room after hearing the commotion.

Chico flashed back to the accident as he envisioned himself being thrust against the brick wall.

Chico tried to piece together the events that happened that day. Looking up he realized something just as the nurse came to check on him.

Chico pointed his finger at Mando. "Hey wait a minute! You..."

The nurse pulled Mando and Suzanne away from Chico.

"You better go. He needs his medication." One nurse escorted Mando and Suzanne out of Chico's room.

The other nurse came in and settled Chico down. " Shh, Francisco, you need to take your medication."

Turning over Chico tried to rise up out of bed. "But I have to see him. I think he's the one who hit me?"

The nurse handed Chico his cup of medication as Chico threw it across the room. "I don't want this medication. I want my girl back!" Chico began to weep as he realize he was no longer with Suzanne any more.

The nurse reached over pressing the call button. "I need assistance, Mr. Rodriguez is refusing his medication."

Quickly several nurses headed over to Chico's room. A few pinned him down and began to restrain him. Chico tried all he could to fight against them.

A nurse tried to give him the medication as Chico fiercely tried to keep his mouth shut. Nurses tried to pry his mouth open as Chico kept swaying his head back and forth.

"Come on, Mr. Rodriguez you need this medication."

As the nurses were able to restrain him one of the doctors came in. "What's going on?"

"He's not responding to his medication. He refuses to take it!" a nurse yelled over to the Doctor.

Chico swayed his head back away from the doctor. "We'll have to do it intravenously, then. Keep him restrained while we hook up an IV on him."

Wheeling in the IV, a nurse hooked the tube to the bag of fluid. Propping Chico up, another nurse began to insert the IV on Chico's arm.

"OWW!" Chico yelled. Sweat dripping down his brow from the exertion of the fight, Chico began to give in into the fluid from the IV.

Ed sat in the waiting room as he heard Chico scream. Rushing over Ed had to know what was happening.

"Is Francisco alright?" Ed asked as he cornered Suzanne and Mando.

"Ed, Chico obviously wasn't to thrilled to see us together." Wiping her eyes, Suzanne cried.

"Well can you blame him?" Ed asked.

"I, we were trying to make peace with him till..." Mando figured it out.

"Till what?" Ed asked.

"Oh nothing, nothing important Ed. We'll see how he is doing later." Mando rushed Suzanne away from Ed.

"Well gotta go," Mando said. Suzanne looked at Mando funny. Mando rushed Suzanne over to the elevator.

"Mando? What's up? Why are you rushing outta here?" Suzanne questioned him as she pushed the elevator button.

"Suz, I think Chico knows." Mando paced in front of the elevator door.

As the door opened Suzanne and Mando walked in. "Knows what?" Suzanne asked.

"He knows who hit him," Mando said.

"Oh my God. Are you sure? What are you going to do?"

Mando agitated pace in the elevator. "I am so screwed!" Mando gripped his hair on his head to keep from slamming the elevator wall.

Suzanne embraced Mando trying to calm him down.

"I don't know what we are going to do Suz! We better lay low for a while in case he starts asking questions." Mando and Suzanne quickly left the elevator as it opened up.

* * * * *

Chico lay still as he gradually woke from the medication he was given. Turning his head he looked across his room. He noticed an empty space on the bed table.

Sharon walked in and greeted Chico. "Hello Francisco, I hear you had quite an outburst earlier."

"I guess, it's little fuzzy to me right now," Chico smiled.

Sharon looked at the indent Chico left on the wall where he threw the bouquet.

"How are those exercises coming Francisco?" Sharon leaned over near Chico checking his flexibility.

"Piece of cake Sharon, piece of cake!" Chico smiled as he tried to move his hands.

Sharon loosened the restraints to see Chico's progress. Feeling his muscles, Chico began to flex them in front of her.

"Well Sharon what do you think?" Chico tilted his head and kissed his biceps for Sharon.

Eyeing her ever so, he puckered up for her.

"Stop it Francisco, I have a job to do here." Sharon smiled as she checked his muscle tone.

Leaning over, Sharon checked Chico's other arm. Chico could hardly stand it as he kept feeling Sharon's breathing against him.

Chico embraced her as he made an attempt to kiss her. Chico peeked to see if he was being watched by anyone.

"Please, Mr. Rodriguez," Sharon tried to pull away.

"Come on Sharon you know you want it. Now is a good time for me." Brushing his hand slightly on against her cheek, Chico was about to kiss her.

"Mr. Rodriguez, I can't, my father would not approve of this!" Sharon said.

Chico looked at Sharon. "You of all women need your father's approval? Just tell 'em I'm sweet and cute!" Chico winked at Sharon.

"I'll have to think about it Mr. Rodriguez."

"Call me Francisco, that's what everyone else is calling me? Unless you have a better name for me honey!" Chico winked at Sharon.

Chico's freed hands embraced Sharon as she tried to move away.

"Chico please, I can't." Sharon tried to explain through Chico's kisses.

"What do you mean you can't?" Chico said through his kisses.

"Ah Sharon, just think of that little engine that could. Besides you're doing a good job of it anyway."

Sharon was blocked in between Chico's long slender fingers. "Francisco, if I get caught by anyone of the Doctors flirting with there patients I could get fired."

"Who's flirting?" Chico smiled gently brushed his hand against her chin. "Consider this part of my therapy."

Sharon thought about her consequences regarding giving into Chico's invitation.

"Come on Sharon, I'm lonely I need someone to love me."

Chico slowly pressed his lips upon hers as she eventually gave into Chico.

Sharon released as she felt Chico's need for affection come over her.

Sharon got ready to leave Chico's room knowing that her relationship with Chico as a patient would soon change into something personal.

Sighed as she left Chico's room she had to prepare herself for her father who knowingly wouldn't approve of their relationship.

Chico lay in bed, eventually falling asleep. Chico started to dream of the accident. Picturing himself walking down the alley. Chico could still hear the thunderous sound of the car that hit him. Chico's body jerked as he relived the moment of being thrown and pinned against the brick building.

Chico rose up quickly as he woke up. Sweat dripped down his forehead as he tried to get the vision of the accident out of his head.

Chico shivered as he thought of himself flying towards the ground dying. Chico tried desperately tried to think of anything after that. All he could draw was a blank.

"God I wish I could remember what happened after that!"

Chico's phone rang in his room. "Who the hell can that be?"

Chico tried to answer the phone with his loosened straps. Struggling he was able to pick it up.

"Hello... Hello?" Chico answered.

"Chico... Francisco?" Suzanne replied.

"Chico, I need to see you.... It has to do with our baby I'm carrying."

"What?" Chico was concerned, confused.

"Baby? Don't tell, let me guess Suzanne. It's Mando's! Isn't it?" Chico angrily spoke to Suzanne as he noticed his hand severely shaking as he grasped the phone.

Suzanne began to cry. "Chico, the baby..."

"Forget Suzanne. Your baby, and my life is over!" Chico began to fear the continuos shake coming from his hands as he desperately tried to hold on to the receiver.

Chico scared of what was happening cried in fear. "Oh God what is happening to me?"

"Chico, what's wrong? Are you ok?" Silence filled the line. Becoming scared Suzanne dropped the phone and headed back to the hospital.

Chico's grip could no longer hold the receiver as he fell back from the pain that took over him.

"I give up!" Chico cried as he lay back while his pain increased. Chico tried to control his pain as he kept thinking of his troubles with Mando and Suzanne.

"I know longer want to deal with anyone!" Chico thought as he cried. "Just give me peace somehow!"

Using his teeth Chico yanked the tube away from him. Chico then closed his eyes falling deep into a world of rejection.

Nurses who've monitored Chico's progress noticed a change in his vitals as they recorded his vital signs.

Nurses checked and rechecked his vitals to confirm and verify what they had witnessed. "I'm heading over to Francisco's room to check on him," Sharon said to another RN.

Sharon along with the registered nurse walked into Chico's room.

"Mr. Rodriguez? How are you today?" Sharon asked.

Chico lay motionless as his body shook as the result of a relapse.

Sharon walked closer to Chico as she notices the needle still dripping hanging lifelessly against Chico's arm.

"Oh no. Francisco. Why!" Sharon cried.

"Call Mr. Ed Brown, I'm afraid Francisco has slipped into a coma!" Sharon cried as she looked at Chico's lifeless body.

Sharon took hold of the IV needle that Chico yanked off of him. Noticing the teeth marks. Sharon just stood there asking him why.

"Why are you giving up Francisco?" Sharon asked.

Sharon retrieved another needle and tube inserting it in Chico's arm. Sharon watched as Chico lay there lifelessly.

"Come on Chico, you have to pull through this. If not for me please do it for my father." Sharon brushed his hair off his eyes as she gently stroked his hand.

Sharon continued to comfort Chico as she began to kiss his hand gently.

Shaking her head Sharon realized how much this Francisco had meant so much to her father.

"God Francisco, my father will be devastated if you leave us so soon." Sharon leaned over to Chico and kissed him.

As Sharon still kissed him. Chico's door opened Suzanne entered the room as she witnessed Sharon.

Sharon looked up. "Oh God, I'm so sorry. Please don't say anything to anyone."

Suzanne approached Sharon. "Don't worry Sharon. Chico is in need of love and support right now. We can't afford to put him in a emotional state."

Suzanne walked closer to Chico grasping his hand. Suzanne began to cry. "Chico, I am so sorry. This wasn't meant to happen this way..."

Chico started to tremble as his body started to shake.

"Oh God, Sharon what is happening to him?" Suzanne feared.

"He's experiencing pain again. He's trying to fight it." Sharon hurriedly increased the drip in the IV adding more Oxycodone in his system.

"How long has he been on the IV?" Suzanne asked as she watched Sharon increase his dosage more.

"Pretty much since his last relapsed. Shortly after you and your husband left." Sharon said.

Sharon left to go to the nurse's station to record Chico's progress.

Suzanne watched Chico slowly drift back into his relaxed state.

Chico started to stir around. Suzanne walked over by the bed near Chico's chest. Leaning over Suzanne lowered to embrace Chico.

"Oh God Chico, please for Edina's sake pull through this." Suzanne's eyes began to water as her tears blurred her vision.

Chico felt the embrace of someone as he gradually moved his hands up towards Suzanne's hair.

Chico started to breathe heavy as he noticed a familiar scent. "Sharon." Whispering Chico continued to brush Suzanne's hair.

Suzanne tried to pull away as she realized he mentioned Sharon's name. Struggling to let go Suzanne lay there as Chico grasped her head lifting it up.

Chico began to pucker up, ready to kiss her. "Sharon" Chico whispered as he kissed Suzanne.

Suzanne was confused about Chico calling her Sharon, yet Suzanne was wanting him. Suzanne guided by Chico's hands felt his lips press against hers.

"Let's not tell anyone about this Sharon." Chico whispered between kisses.

"Chico," Suzanne, with tears in her eyes, tried to say between his affection.

Chico opened his eyes wide only to find Suzanne embraced upon his hands.

"Your, your not Sharon..." Chico freaked out scooting back farther from Suzanne in his bed.

"No Chico, I'm Suzanne remember?" Suzanne tried to reassure Chico.

"I was hoping you were Sharon. Suzanne. I, I need to see her" Chico panicked as he was needing Sharon badly.

"Chico are you alright?" Suzanne began to worry.

"Please, God. Go get Sharon, I need to see her!" Chico began to rock steadily.

"Ok, ok, I'll page her on the call button." Suzanne began to reach to the call button when Chico stopped her.

"No please go find her! It'll be quicker!" Chico began to sweat as signs of perspiration shone on his forehead.

Suzanne rushed out of Chico's room only to find Sharon at the nurse's station. "Sharon, Chico is needing you right away." Sharon tossed her folder and rushed over to Chico's room.

"Francisco, what's wrong? Are you in any pain?" Sharon looked him over.

Chico struggled. "Sharon, I hurt all over. I feel like I have been slammed against a wall."

Suzanne worried looked at Chico then to Sharon.

Sharon checked his IV as she increased his dosage once more. Sharon checked his body as she began to press parts of his torso and leg.

Chico struggled as he watched Sharon fuss with him. "I'll give you a injection Francisco along with the IV. I'll check on you periodically.

Chico felt the rush of the IV upon his arm as he body gave into the fluid. Chico cried as he grasped upon Suzanne's hand. "Sharon, don't leave me please."

Suzanne turned around looking at him as he sadly looked at her. Suzanne didn't know what to make of his behavior. Hearing the scuffle of people walk by, Suzanne noticed Ed walk in the room.

"Come on Sharon. Please stay here with me?" Chico cried.

Ed walked over closer to Chico. "Chico this is Suzanne, Sharon is out on the floor."

Chico looked at Ed confused. " I need Sharon, she has to help me!" Chico rose up struggled to move around.

Ed grasped Chico arm. "What's the matter Francisco?"

Chico rocked as he desperately tried to fight the feeling he was having. "I ache all over. I, I need Sharon to help me!"

Chico huddled up as he began to feel cold. Rocking ever so, Chico looked around frantically for Sharon.

Ed began to worry. "Chico let me go find her for you."

Chico constantly rocked on the bed huddled badly wanting Sharon.

Ed left Chico's room in a hurry looking for Sharon. "Have you seen my daughter Sharon? I need to see her, it's important."

A nurse pointed to Sharon's direction towards the X-ray lab. Ed ran over to X-ray to find Sharon.

"Sharon, Chico is acting very unusual? He claims he aches all over. He's rocking uncontrollably and having chills."

Sharon slammed her files on the table," Damn it, Dad, I was afraid of this." Sharon covered her eyes feared what lied ahead.

Ed concerned embraced Sharon's arm. "Afraid of what Sharon?"

Frightened Sharon looked at her father. "Dad, he may be becoming addicted to Oxycodone."

Ed looked at Sharon confused.

"Chico has been taking Oxycodone for his pain for several hours at a time in large doses. More than usual, Dad."

"We need to monitor him and watch his withdrawals now, before it is too late" Sharon said.

"Too late?" Ed feared.

"Dad, with the amount of it in his system. As he wears it out of him, he'll be experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms."

Ed was too much in shock to take it all in. "I can't believe this Sharon." Ed sat down on the waiting area near the X-ray lab.

"What else can you go wrong with him?" Ed leaned over covered his head in his hands. Sharon noticed Ed's feelings for Chico as she crouched down to comfort him.

"Dad, I understand what you going through. Francisco is a bright young man." Sharon placed her hand upon her father's hand,

"Dad, there is something about Francisco you should now." Sharon embraced her father as he consciously listened.

"What is it Sharon?" Ed feared

"With his sudden addiction to Oxycodone, his withdrawals not only could be violent but fatal." Sharon wiped her eyes as she continued to tell her father the bad news.

"Dad, there is a strong chance we could lose him if we are not careful. I know deep down some where in your old stubborn body you love him dearly." Sharon embraced her father as he took in the news.

Ed sat there silently weeping, thinking of the bad news towards Chico's recovery.

Ed looked at Sharon weeping ever so. " Dad, I love him as much as you, if not more."

Ed took Sharon on his shoulder as they both wept regarding Chico's condition. "Sharon, I had no idea you had feelings for Chico."

Sharon released from her father's embrace. "Dad, Chico and I were always good friends when we first met. I had admired the both of you on how well you became attached to each other."

"I'd never thought I would see the day when my own father would have a Hispanic work in his garage."

"Well Sharon, time as well as people do change." Ed smiled.

Sharon grasped her father's hand. "You're not mad at me for expressing my feelings towards Francisco are you?"

Ed thought about Chico along with his relationship with Suzanne and their daughter Edina.

"No Sharon, seeing Suzanne and Mando pretty much hit it off. It's best that Chico moves on with his life, I suppose."

Ed, concerned,placed his hand on Sharon's hand. "I do wonder what will happen if Chico recovers from all of this and possibly gets his memory back. You should, however, be prepared for his desires for Suzanne if it comes down for him wanting her back."

"Yes, dad I have often thought of that as I see him lay there."

* * * * *

Mando headed back to their apartment. "God, I had no idea it was going to be like this."

Mando sat on the couch worried about his relationship of Chico. "Was it a mistake to take Suzanne away from him?"

"Chico wouldn't be in the hospital in his condition if I hadn't left them alone." Mando rose off the couch then looked out his window. Seeing the hospital from his location he couldn't get Chico off his mind.

Sadly, Mando thought of the outburst Chico had when Suzanne and him went to visit him. Moving away from the window Mando struggled with the anger Chico had towards them.

"Chico, if you could only understand." Mando paced the floor as he tried to find any possible way to reassure Chico is was for his own good.

Mando grabbed his keys deciding to see Chico.

As Mando arrived at the hospital pressing the elevator door he thought about his last conversation with him.

"Man, I just want to talk to Chico without making a big scene. Is that too much to ask?" Mando thought as walked in the elevator pressing the button to Chico's floor.

The elevator arrived at Chico's floor. As the door opened, Mando took in a deep breath slowly letting it out.

Mando looked around noticing Suzanne and Ed in the waiting room.

"Hello Ed, hello Suzanne" Mando walking towards them greeted Ed and Suzanne.

Suzanne looked up to see Mando. Rising up quickly Suzanne and Ed went to embrace Mando.

"Oh God what happened?" Mando asked. "This doesn't looked good at all"

Ed embraced him again. "Mando, Chico has been in and out of a coma. He also has become addicted to the painkiller that they have been giving him through out his ordeal"

Mando couldn't take it all in, as he became emotional from hearing the news. "Is he going to be alright?"

Suzanne embraced Mando. " When Chico starts to ware off the Oxycodone he will begin to have severe withdrawals some which we are afraid could be fatal."

"Oh God No!" Mando covered his eyes as he began to get emotional in front of Ed and Suzanne.

"It all my fault!" Mando cried. "I have to see him before it's too late" Mando rushed over to Chico's room.

Ed looked at Suzanne confused about Mando's remark. Suzanne placed her hand on Ed shoulder. "Ed there's something you should know about the accident involving Chico."

Mando left to gather his thought regarding seeing Chico again.

Suzanne motioned Ed to it down. "Ed, I convinced Mando to go back to the apartment to get more of Edina's things."

Suzanne eyes began to tear as she embraced Ed's hand. "Mando thought is was best to go Sunday morning when you and Chico attended church service."

Ed looked at Suzanne as he heard what she had to say. "Go on Suzanne."

"Ed when we left the apartment Chico spotted us when we got stalled in traffic. Chico caught up with us pounding on our back window." Suzanne cried.

"Ed, I so desperately wanted to see him. I yelled out the window to him as he began to chase us. Mando freaked out as his car got stuck in gear resulting in Chico getting seriously hurt."

Ed looked at Suzanne concerned. "Suzanne, what really happened to Chico. How did he get hurt?"

Suzanne wiped her eyes as she began to continue the news regarding Chico's accident.

"Ed, Mando's car was stuck in gear and wouldn't go in reverse. Just as Chico approached the back of the car it...."

Suzanne cried after reliving the jolt of the car.

"It what Suzanne.... Please tell me what happened." Ed embraced her.

"It backfired, jerking back slamming Chico against the brick building. I turned around and looked to find Chico lay helplessly on the ground."

Suzanne became hysterical as she clung on Ed's shoulder. "Ed it was an accident. He didn't mean no harm on him. I swear."

"Why didn't you go to the police. I'm sure that they would understood?" Ed asked as he comforted her.

"Ed, Mando was still worried about his disruption of our wedding. He had a feeling the cops were after him still."

Ed remembered the news bulletin about the accused hit and run driver being captured. "Yes Suzanne, I remember seeing the news report about it. That guy did look a lot like Mando."

"Ed, all I ask is that you don't judge Mando for what happened to Chico. It was an accident. I know it. Mando is going to Chico's room to possibly reason with him about his relationship with me and how it has caused such trouble with everyone"

Mando walked by Chico's room light grasping on the door he feared seeing Chico after his last outburst with him and Suzanne.

Mando found Chico unconscious still from the dose that was given to him earlier from Sharon.

Looking at Chico Mando couldn't help but get upset over his condition caused by him. Wiping his eyes Mando grabbed the chair next to him and sat down.

"I just can't believe this has happened to you Chico!" Mando embraced Chico's hand gently rubbing it hoping Chico would respond.

Tears falling from his eyes. Mando wished somehow Chico could know he was there. As Mando continued to grasp his hand, Chico began to notice the embrace upon him.

Chico's head began to twitch as he continued to feel the embrace of Mando's hand.

Slowly opening his eyes, Chico looked around, finding Mando next to him.

Chico shocked to see Mando panicked as he backed away from frantically.

"What, what are you doing here!" Chico said, frightened

"Chico, I've come to make peace with you!" Mando tried to calm Chico down.

Sadly Mando lowered his head." Chico, I've come to tell you that I'm turning myself into the police."

Chico relaxed as he slowly eased his way forward. "So it was you that hit me! Wasn't it!"

Mando tearfully approached him with his hand to embrace him. " Yes, Chico, it was me and Suzanne in that car the day you got hit. Chico, I swear to God it was an accident! The car backfired and went into reverse hitting you." Mando tearfully tried to continue.

"Suzanne wanted to stop and check you out but I refused on account I had just taken her away on the day of your wedding you two were supposed to have the day before."

Mando leaned forward towards Chico and cried. "I had no intentions to hurt anyone Chico. You know how much you and Suzanne mean to me"

Chico sat there staring at Mando as he took in all in.

"That's the problem Mando. You were in jail for kidnapping Edina and Suzanne yet you escaped so you can interrupt our wedding? The day that Suzanne and I have longed for! That day can never be replaced now that you've taken her away and married her."

Chico was so upset he was lost for words.

"Mando, as much as I want her back. There's no chance in hell she'll want me back. I know deep down she loves you. She wouldn't want me at all."

Chico shook again from his withdrawals from the Oxycodone.

"Chico, I know she still loves you..." Mando pleaded.

"Know wait a minute Mando. I'm sure since you've been married you have to have been ...active, am I right?" Chico feared.

Mando cringed to answer Chico regarding their married relationship. "Yes, Chico we have been active sexually if that is what you mean?"

"Tell me something Mando has she ever tried to back off from you? Was she willing to accept you?" Chico looked straight in his eyes.

Mando thought about the night at the hotel Casino. "Chico, from what I felt when I was with her, she seems pretty much relaxed. I'm sure if she never wanted me she would told me or physically stopped me.

Chico tried to keep his emotions from showing. "Well did she? Did she stop you?"

"Chico she seemed reluctant at first, but after I convinced her she was never going to see you again."

Mando back a way a bit.

"Suzanne was willing to accept me and even told me she had fallen in love with me."

"Great, that's just great!" Chico violently pushed his bed table away from him.

"Mando, Suzanne called me earlier regarding the baby she's carrying?" Chico concerned questioned Mando.

"Is the baby ok?" Mando said.

"Mando I don't know. She mentioned something about the baby then I blacked out"

Ed walked in after noticing Mando had walked in. Not hearing any scuffle he decided to see if things were ok with the two of them.

Ed silently crept in. "Oh I'm sorry, I was just checking to see if you were alright"

"Is she still here?" Chico asked.

"Yeah Chico, I was with her and Ed chatting about the accident before I went in to see you?" Mando said as he felt more at eased with Chico now.

"Mando, I would like her to come in and be with us. She said she had something to tell me regarding the baby"

"I'll go get her ok?" Chico waved Mando out.

Suzanne was talking with Ed when Mando cornered her. "Suz, Chico wants to see you about something. Something you had talked to him on the phone before he blacked out."

Suzanne knew what Mando was referring to when he cornered her. "Oh God Ed, Mando, I called Chico earlier regarding the baby I'm carrying."

Suzanne began to get upset as she wiped her eyes.

Ed embraced her, as did Mando. Both concerned knew it wasn't good for Chico. Suzanne sat down, as well as did Ed and Mando.

Mando leaned forward holding Suzanne's hand. "Suz, what's wrong? Is the baby ok?"

Ed put his arm around her. "Please Suzanne what has happened to the baby?"

Suzanne looked at Ed then at Mando. "When Chico told me I was pregnant I had a feeling but wasn't sure"

Ed looked at Suzanne concerned for Chico's relationship with her. "Ed, Mando, the baby's father is..."

Mando looked at Ed.

"I don't know how to say this Ed but ..." Suzanne broke down crying. "It's Mando's." Suzanne leaned forward as she continued crying.

Mando leaned towards her and embraced her. "God Suzanne, I don't know what to say." Mando whispered. " Are you sure?"

Ed gradually embraced her knowing what trouble was going to lie ahead for Mando, Suzanne and Chico.

"I used one of those home pregnancy tests. It read positive. I just assumed it was Chico's till I figured out the due date by how late I was."

"Now I have to face Chico and give him the news," Suzanne feared. Ed and Mando decided to come along with Suzanne for support in case Chico would cause some sort of scene.

Suzanne walked over to Chico's room as Ed and Mando followed. "Suzanne we'll wait right here in case you need us for anything" Ed said.

Suzanne started to make her way towards Chico's bed. Mando embraced Ed. "Ed, please don't think less of Suzanne because of her pregnancy. I know deep down she still loves Chico."

Ed watched Suzanne make her way towards Chico's bed.

"Hi Chico" Suzanne took hold of Chico's long slender fingers.

"Suzanne" Chico smiled If I remember correctly You called having something to tell me about our baby your carrying?"

Suzanne leaned against the side rail of the bed as she tried to control her emotions. Chico reached out his hand to greet her.

"Yes Chico, I have something to tell you about the baby I'm carrying." Suzanne started to breathe heavy from nervousness.

"Chico, when you told me morning after Christmas that I was having a baby. I really was shocked and surprised." Suzanne wiped her eyes.

"However when I found out the actual due date and when the conception was. That unfortunately lead to one thing..."

Suzanne began to cry as she tried to tell Chico about the baby. "Chico the baby I'm carrying is Mando's."

Chico angrily rose up. "YOU CAN"T BE SERIOUS!"

Chico irritated leaped out of bed. As Ed and Mando ran in after Chico's response.

Chico rushed to Suzanne grasped her arms hard as he angrily looked into her eyes. "God damn it Suzanne, I thought you loved me!" Chico's tears kept blocking his vision as he continued to grasp her tightly.

"Chico, I do love you as well as Mando." Suzanne cried as he struggled to move her arms.

Chico pointed to Mando as he stood by the door. "Did Mando put you up to this? Did he threaten you to say it was his instead of mine?"

Chico viciously let go of Suzanne's arms and slumped back on the bed. Leaning back Chico covered his eyes in shame thinking he was the father of her upcoming baby.

"I can't believe I even proposed to you Suzanne." Chico sarcastically tossed his cup and other items that were on the bed table.

"I'm surprised you haven't told me that Edina isn't mine either!" Chico angrily paced the side of the bed.

"Chico, I know as well as you know that Edina is your own flesh and blood." Suzanne moved near Mando, as Chico became angrier.

Mando went in front of Suzanne to protect her from Chico's behavior.

Chico walked towards Mando. "I owe you a belated congratulations Mando." Chico settled down and extended his hand towards Mando.

Mando wasn't sure what to make of Chico's congratulating him. Mando shyly walked towards Chico as he extended his hand out towards Chico's.

"Thanks Chico?" Mando said, as he was about to grasp Chico's hand. Chico changed the direction of his hand as he quickly made a fist punching Mando in the stomach.

"Ahhhh," in pain Mando bent over holding his stomach.

"Jesus Chico! I know you would be upset about this but..." Mando bent over again.

"You're lucky that's all I did," Mando

Several nurses ran into Chico's room after hearing the commotion. "That's it Mr. Rodriguez you're being restrained again and possibly sedated.

Chico moved back away from the nurses. " Like hell you will!" Chico was approached by several nurses and orderlies, placing Chico back in his bed.

One by one they began to restrain him. Chico tried desperately to fight them as he each of his arms and legs began to feel the restraints wrapped around him.

Mando shaken from Chico's punch watched in disbelief as they restrained Chico.

A Doctor came in with a needle ready to be placed in his IV. "NO! You're not going to go through with this!" Chico struggled to move as he cried.

Sharon walked in as the Doctor was about to inject the Oxycodone in his IV. "What's going on?"

"Chico is acting irate from his pain. He needs the medication to calm him down."

Sharon walked closer to Chico's bed as Chico looked at her sadly.

"What have I done to deserve such pain to everyone and myself!" Tears flowed down Chico's face as he witnessed Mando with Suzanne carrying what he thought was his child.

Chico then looked at Sharon. "Sharon, if you love me kiss me goodbye. I may not wake up in the morning." Chico slowly drifted into a world of rejection as he gave into the medication.

Chico sedated began to have nightmares of Suzanne telling him about the baby's father, the accident, and the wedding interruption. One after another the images circled his mind.

Chico rose up quickly from the image that haunted him still to this day. Flashing back when he so desperately wanted to know who was Edina's paternal father. Chico remembered telling Suzanne he would raise the baby regardless who the father was.

"Oh God, I can't stand this no more! I have to know for a fact if that baby is Mando's!" Chico sat up trying to think clearly through the medication that was given to him.

"If that baby is mine, then I will fight for custody since Suzanne and Mando are married. If it happens to be Mando's, then that I'm afraid that will be my final battle against Mando.

Chico turned his head and noticed that Suzanne had fallen asleep on the chair next to him.

Chico tried to get her attention, swinging his arms he realized he was till bound up from the fight he tried so desperately to get out of. Trying so hard to reach her he noticed it was hopeless. Blowing ever so hard towards her direction he tired to get her attention. "Suzanne" Chico tried to say between each breath he used to exhale at her.

Suzanne began to stir from the breeze she kept feeling against her hair. Swatting at the direction on what was blowing against her. Suzanne woke up after giving up from the constant breeze.

"What is this blowing against me." Suzanne woke up turning her head finding Chico constantly blowing at her direction.

"Chico? Are you ok?" Suzanne suddenly rose up leaning over towards Chico.

"Suzanne, I have been struggling ever since you had said the baby was Mando's." Chico tried to desperately reach her only to be stopped by his binding wrists.

"Chico, I never meant to hurt anyone." Suzanne embraced Chico's chin. Suzanne sighed as she witnessed Chico was alert.

"Chico, I haven't had a test from the doctor yet regarding any DNA. There is still a possibility that this child could be yours."

Chico tried so desperately to reach her as he struggled. Moaning Chico motioned with his head to see if Suzanne could loosen the restraints.

Suzanne looked around the restraints as she noticed the latches to loosen him up. "Here Chico, let me try to loosen these restraints."

Suzanne angrily struggled to release Chico from the bondage he was in.

Pulling back as hard as she could she finally felt the release of the restraints.

Chico's hands were finally free as he rubbed them from the soreness of the fight while they drugged him earlier.

Reacting to the freedom he finally had, Chico embraced Suzanne. Chico sat himself up as he embraced her.

Feeling Chico's arms wrapped around her Suzanne was relieved to see Chico alert and free from the restraints till Chico began to shake. Suzanne continued to embrace him as she felt his body tremble.

"Chico, are you ok?" Suzanne whispered in his ear. Hearing no response, Suzanne looked at him as she continued to embrace him.

"Chico? Chico!" Chico stood there motionless as he began to have a withdrawal. Suzanne lightly rubbed his cheek to get any response.

"Chico, hold on you'll get through this. I can't let anything bad happen to you." Suzanne continued to rub his cheek lightly.

"Chico think of your daughter Edina, and your child on the way." Suzanne watched as Chico gradually came back from his withdrawal symptom.

Chico began to come alert after his withdrawal. "What happened?" Chico was slumped over Suzanne.

"Chico, you suffered a withdrawal from the Oxycodone they have been administering to you."

Suzanne wept as she seen Chico in such a bad state. "Chico they have given you so much of it that you've become addicted to it."

Chico feared the sudden withdrawals he was having. "Suzanne, please don't leave me. I can't get through this by alone."

Chico fearing his reaction to the withdrawals held Suzanne with all he could.

" Chico, you'll never be alone when you go through this. Together we can overcome your bodies need for this horrible pain killer they've given you."

Suzanne carefully sat Chico back down on the bed as he gradually stretched his long legs back into the bed.

"Chico, I'm going to find some sort of treatment for your addiction." Suzanne leaned over brushing his hair back.

Chico grasped Suzanne's hand and kissed it. "However Chico, I can't stop them from administering it to you. You have to fight this pain and withdrawals yourself till I can find some sort of help."

Suzanne threw the covers over Chico. "I just hope I can find something soon before it's too late."

Suzanne hugged Chico as she kissed him goodbye." I hope to come back with some good news about any rehab."

Chico embraced her as she was about to leave. "Thank you for being here for me. You seem to be the only who cares."

Suzanne grasped Chico's hand. "Ed cares for you, Chico. This has been very grueling for him. He has been depressed thinking he is going to lose you."

Suzanne left to see Sharon regarding any source or recovery from Chico's addiction to Oxycodone.

Suzanne knocked on Sharon's desk as Suzanne noticed Sharon was busy filing reports. Sharon was too much involved in her work to see who it was. "Yes, can I help you?"

"Sharon, I have to see you about Chico's addiction to his pain killer" Suzanne barely said through her tears.

Sharon looked up as she realized it was Suzanne. Getting up off her chair Sharon went over to hug Suzanne.

"I'm afraid this isn't going to be easy Suzanne. He has had so much so soon. Any abrupt stopping of the Oxycodone could put him in a very serious state." Sharon said as she comforted Suzanne.

"I'm afraid all we can do is continue to administer it to him but in small limited dosages. As he gradually takes in the smaller amounts his body will in time adjust to it."

Suzanne hoped for a better alternative. "God if there was only another way to treat it."

"I agree Suzanne, unfortunately there isn't. This is the only safest way feasible that won't effect anymore worse then he is already dealing with."

Ed walked over as he spotted Sharon and Suzanne at Sharon's desk.

"Dad, I'm afraid Francisco's recovery from his addiction to Oxycodone will take a serious amount of time and emotionally will be grueling for everyone. Him especially"

Ed leaned on Sharon's desk wondering how much more could Chico take of this. "Sharon, I'm going to go visit Chico.

Sharon placed her small hand upon her father's hand. "Please Dad, say a prayer for Francisco, he is going to need strength and courage while he goes throughout his withdrawals."

Ed rose off of Sharon's desk patting her on the shoulder as he made his way towards Chico's room. Ed walked into Chico's room just as he was having a withdrawal symptom. Ed frightened to see Chico tremble so much he decided to wait till his withdrawals were over.

Ed took off his hat then looked up as he always did when he spoke to God. "Please God, give Chico the strength and courage he needs to carry on through this ordeal."

Placing his hat on his head Ed waited while Chico settled down from his withdrawals.

Ed walked in as he spotted Chico looking up. "Ah hello, Chico," Ed smiled and placed his old tired hand upon Chico's slender fingers.

"Chico, I hear Suzanne has Sharon helping her regarding my recovery?" Ed smiled.

"Yeah Ed, she's a sweet girl," Chico smiled.

"Sharon has taking quite a liking to you," Ed smiled as he patted his hand.

"Sharon? She's a sweet girl too. Or were you talking about Suzanne?" Chico blushed.

"Don't get me wrong Ed, your daughter is a very sweet girl. She has gone out of her way tremendously to save my life. I owe her dearly"

"Chico, are you thinking that Suzanne will come back to you now?" Ed asked.

"Ed, somewhere in this stubborn heart of mine still has a desire for Suzanne. I know deep down as well as Mando, Suzanne does too."

Chico scooted over to make himself more comfortable. "Suzanne and I basically have to meet face to face with each other and confess our feelings towards each other."

Ed shook his head. "Chico I find that to be a difficult task to convince Mando that Suzanne and you were really made for each other."

"Ed, I just have to convince Suzanne that I love her." Chico tried to clear his emotions through his pain treatments.

"Chico, I know you love her. Suzanne knows you love her. But you have to realize what she has been through. The kidnapping, the forced marriage in Vegas. She had no idea that she would ever see you again?" Ed assured him.

"Yeah I know Ed, that is why I have to do my best to convince her that she is a part of my life, and I still love her even after what we both have been through. I just hope that I haven't lead Sharon into anything. I hope that she understands." Chico sadly looked at Ed.

"Don't worry about Sharon Chico, I'll talk to her, I'm sure she'll understand," Ed smiled. Ed got up off his chair and shook hands with Chico.

"I'll let you rest a bit Chico, I'm sure you could use some relaxing after what you've been through lately. I'll stop by later and see you before I head on home."


Chico leaned over and hugged Ed. "Thanks man, you've so good to me." Chico wiped his eyes as he hugged him.


Chico lay back as he tried to remember as much as he could regarding his friendship with Ed when Mando walked in.

Mando grabbed a chair and scooted closer to Chico. "Chico, please let me speak with you"

Chico stared at Mando. "Mando what could be so important to tell me after what you've done with Suzanne and me."

Mando leaned over the bed grasping Chico's hand. "Chico, I ask. I beg for your forgiveness." Mando pleaded.

"How can I? You took my girl away from me Mando. The girl I planned on marrying!"

Chico just couldn't believe all he had went through with Suzanne and Mando.

Chico poked on Mando's chest. "I know deep down you love her Mando. Your not gonna give her up without a fight." Chico irritated rustled with his bed sheets.

"You knew how much she meant to me Mando. Why?" Chico asked.

Mando placed his hands over his face as he rubbed his eyes. "Chico, I have always cherished your relationship you've had with Suzanne."

Mando grasped his hands together as he leaned on Chico's bed. "Suzanne was always so sweet with me. Excepting me for who I was. She has a tender side I have never had with anyone else before."

Mando looked at Chico as his eyes began to get misty. "Chico, I'm sorry I just had to have the opportunity to be with her."

Chico looked at Mando. "So your telling me you were jealous of us being together?"

Mando thought about what Chico said of his jealousy towards them.

"I accepted the fact that you two were living together Chico. It's just that when she became pregnant I knew it was over between Suzanne and I."

Mando rose up off of Chico's bed. "That's why I had to take Edina. Chico, I hoped that some how Edina was mine. When she wasn't I was devastated."

Chico rose up leaning against the bed table. "Is that why you kidnapped her and took her to Vegas?"

Mando shook his head yes. "Chico, it was the only way I knew at the time I could have her and Edina. I had a feeling deep down she still loved you."

Chico brushed his hair back with his hand. "What about the feelings she was having towards you Mando?"

Mando thought about the morning they were passionate with each other.

"Chico, I had no idea she was going to fall in love with me. I have to admit I was relieved when she did. I didn't feel so guilty then after words." Mando buried his head in his hands thinking of all that has happened between the three of them.

Chico also kept thinking of all that happen with him and Suzanne since he's known her.

" You know Mando, I often wonder with all that has happened with Suzanne and I. I just wonder if Suzanne and I were really meant to be together?"

Mando looked at Chico surprised." For crying out loud Chico you two had a baby together!" Mando shook his head in disbelief. "If that wasn't meant to be. I don't know what is then."

Struggling with what Mando said Chico wondered about Suzanne. "What are you going to do if Suzanne's baby is yours Mando?"

"Chico, if the baby is mine, I don't know if I'll have the time to help Suzanne raise it. I'm always busy doing something. I hate to have Suzanne raise the baby alone you know," Mando feared.

"Yeah busy doing God knows what!" Chico said.

"Chico, wat I do to earn any kind of extra cash is purely legal," said Mando.

"Purely yes, legal no." Chico laughed.

"Honest Chico!" Mando said convincingly.

"Ok, Ok I believe you." Chico winked.

Sharon walked knocking on Chico's door. "Mr. Rodriguez?"

Chico and Mando looked at Sharon. Mando swatted Chico after he saw Chico eye Sharon all over.

"OW Mando." Chico whined.

"Francisco, it's time for your therapy again. I've noticed a change in your progress and decided it was time to get you up and moving again."

Sharon wheeled the chair over towards Chico's bed as he tried to sit closer to the edge. Sharon helped him up as she stood close by him.

Chico slowly got up as he felt a little dizzy toppling over a bit he rubbed his cheek against hers.

Sharon and Chico both consciously tried to cover their emotions about each other in front of Mando.

"Here Sharon, let me help you." Mando helped Sharon assist Chico in the wheelchair.

Chico felt a little dizzy.

"Francisco are you alright?" Sharon asked.

"Yeah, just a wee bit light headed Sharon." Chico rubbed his eyes to focus.

"Well we need to get you up and moving Francisco your body as been out of balance for too long" Sharon unlatched the wheel chair breaks and moved him around the room.

"Hey Chico I'll catch you later," Mando said as he opened the door for Sharon.

"Mando why don't you come with us. I could use the support you know." Chico asked as he looked up at Mando.

Mando shrugged his shoulders. "Ok if you like. I don't know if I'll be much help with your support though Chico."

Sharon wheeled out Chico as Mando followed them to the rehabilitation area.

Heading into the rehabilitation area Sharon wheeled Chico over to the floor mats. "Ok Francisco we'll have you do some stretches on the floor mats before you head on over to the parallel bars.

Mando and Sharon helped Chico up off the chair. Standing tall Chico began to feel dizzy. Wobbling ever so Chico finally began to get his balance straightened out. Chico carefully stretched his back as Sharon motioned him to lie on the floor.

Chico knelt down as he rolled over lying on his back began to stretch his legs by pulling them forward. Chico continued to do his exercises as Mando helped Sharon set up equipment for Chico.

"Ready for your therapy Chico?" Sharon smiled as she extended her hand for Chico's.

"Yeah, yeah, yeah, it'll be a walk in the park remember?" Chico smiled.

"I remember Chico, I also remember what lead to that walk in the park too," Sharon smiled.

Chico winked at Sharon. Mando just shook his head.

"I see you haven't wasted no time flirting with the nurses here, Chico," Mando smiled.

"Mando, he's been a regular Don Juan here!" Sharon smiled.

Chico just looked at her smiling, wondering what she meant by that remark.

"If I wasn't attached to someone else, I would of taken him home for my own personal therapy," Sharon winked.

"You mean all this time you've had someone else waiting for you at home? Does old folks know about this?" Mando asked.

"Oh, I don't want to be around Ed when he finds out about this." Mando cringed.

"Really, beside what ever became of my bedside manner Sharon?" Chico smiled as he took hold of the parallel bars.

"Francisco, I had every nurse on this floor begging me for your bedside manner. Word leaked out that you were hitting on me. Every nurse from the geriatric ward to the nursery wanted a piece of the attraction."

Sharon walked into the parallel bars ready for Chico's therapy.

"Was I that good?" Chico winked.

"Chico if you only knew how you acted under that pain killer they gave you. I'm sure you would have made a fortune if you had any ways of marketing it." Sharon thought of the chaos that was caused by Chico's behavior.

Sharon got Chico steady on the bars.

"Ok Chico, I know it's been a while so don't except a miracle."

Chico got himself stable as Sharon stood far ahead of him. Mando looked on from the side of the bars.

Chico grasped on the parallel bars as he positioned his feet to make his steps forward. Chico lifted his leg as he made an attempt to walk. As his foot began to press on the floor his leg began to give out on him causing him to collapse forward. Chico fell as his arms dangled upon the parallel bars.

Sharon and Mando rushed over to help Chico up. Feeling discouraged Chico lowered his head.

"Are you alright?" Sharon asked

"It's no use Sharon. I'll never be able to walk like I used to." Chico looked away as he sighed.

Sharon went right up to Chico lifting up his chin " Hey! We'll have none of this attitude around here."

"Now Francisco, if I have too I can be just as stubborn as my father." Sharon said sternly.

"How can that be Sharon, he's the only grump I know past the freeway." Chico sighed.

As Chico hung on to the bars Mando walked over cornering Sharon. "Sharon let me talk to him. Maybe I can help."

Mando walked over to Chico. "Here Amigo, let give you a hand." Mando helped Chico position himself, as he was ready to take more steps.

Mando stood in front of him for support. "Now Amigo, I want you to think of one person in your life right now that means so much to you."

Chico thought it over. "Yeah, I've thought of someone."

Mando smiled. "Could that some one be Edina?"

"How did you know?" Chico asked.

Mando smiled as he waved Ed and Suzanne in. Suzanne walked in grasping little Edina's hand as she slowly made her way in.

Chico looked at the direction that Mando was smiling at noticing Edina with Suzanne and Ed.

"Edina!" Chico elated was happy to see her.

Suzanne picked up Edina and stood at the other end of the parallel bars.

Edina smiled as she noticed her daddy at the other end. " Daddy!" Edina shouted smiling at her father.

Chico smiled as he tried to get his feet together. "Edina you remember me!"

Slowly yet steadily Chico began to move his legs slowly closer to Edina and Suzanne.

"Ok Mr. Rodriguez, that's good. Don't rush it too fast. Take it slowly and easy." Sharon guided Chico as she continued to make his way across the bars.

Finally reaching to the end, Chico smiled and collapsed his arms on the poles. Suzanne released Edina as she hurried to her daddy making him lose his balance a bit.

Chico smiled, laughed as he gratefully accepted Edina's greeting. Suzanne embraced Chico knowing things were finally looking up for Chico.

Mando witnessed Chico's accomplishment as he embraced Chico and Suzanne together. Looking at Suzanne and Chico together, Mando decided on one thing.

"Ed, Sharon, can I have a few minutes alone with Suzanne and Chico please?" Mando pleaded.

Ed and Sharon agreed then left to go to her office as Mando sat down on the mat along with Chico and Suzanne.

Mando smiled as he scooted closer to Chico and Suzanne. Edina walked around the back of them.

"Chico, I am so happy to finally see some progress on your recovery. You have no idea how it is to see you'll be back on your feet soon."

Chico patted Mando on the shoulder and Smiled.

"I realize now how much you two mean to each other as I have spoken to you two privately concerning our feelings for each other here." Mando smiled yet seemed saddened.

"Chico, I have decided to grant Suzanne a divorce so you two can go on with your lives." Mando saddened was relieved to finally be apart of their relationship again.

Chico was shocked as he heard Mando mention about there divorce. "Are you sure that is what you want Mando?" Chico embraced him.

Suzanne was in shock from hearing Mando. "Mando, I don't know what to say. I'm so sorry it didn't work out." Suzanne began to become emotional as Mando embraced her.

"Suzanne, you will always have a special place in my heart." Mando kissed her cheek. "I just have to realize it wasn't meant to be."

"Mando, I know as well as the rest of us, how we all feel about each other." Suzanne embraced Mando holding him for quite awhile.

Thinking of their intimate times together, Suzanne agreed it was time to let go.

"Thank you Mando, I will always still love you. You really have been good to me." Suzanne released from Mando and embraced Chico.

"Suzanne remember all those trips I made to Tijuana?" Mando asked as he embraced her shoulder.

"Yeah Mando, I remember?" Suzanne wondered.

"Well Suz, I was getting preparations done regarding our divorce." I knew back then it wasn't going to work out. So I went on with the proceedings. The papers will finalized and sent to you for your signature." Mando explained.

Chico leaned over to Mando, speechless from Mando's sudden actions. "Mando, I hope this divorce doesn't change our friendship."

"No Chico, I hope we can continue being amigos again after all we've been through." Mando shook Chico's hand as he witnessed Chico start to shake.

Mando looked worried as Chico started to shake violently. "Suzanne, is he suppose to be shaking like this?"

Suzanne watched Chico have a withdrawal. "Mando, he is having another withdrawal. I'm afraid this one seems a bit severe." Suzanne leaned over and embraced him gently rubbing him. Chico leaned back collapsing in Suzanne's arms.

"Mando, please go find Sharon. I've never seen him like this before." Suzanne grasped Chico as she brushed his hair back off his eyes.

Mando got up, running out of the physical therapy room looking for Sharon. Mando hurried over to the nurse's station where he spotted her.

"Sharon, Chico's having a withdrawal again. This one seems really extreme." Mando leaned on the nurse's station.

Sharon hurried out her area as she grabbed a syringe of the Oxycodone. "Oh God, how is he?" Sharon said as he jogged over back to the physical therapy room along with Mando.

"Sharon, he was shaking and fell back on Suzanne's arms as she tried to help him."

Mando quickly opened the door as Sharon followed him.

Mando and Sharon hurried over to Chico as Suzanne, while crying, sat there holding him. Ed cried also leaned over towards Chico's head brushing his hair back.

"Oh God I hope it's not too late." Sharon checked his pupils and his blood pressure. Worried that his blood pressure had dropped she asked Ed and Mando for assistance to bring him to a near by gurney.

Sharon grabbed the gurney that was in the therapy room as Mando and Ed lifted Chico upon it. Sharon began to administer the Oxycodone to him in a small dose.

Ed, Mando, Suzanne and Sharon gathered around Chico as he began to lie still. "I'm wheeling him back to his room. He needs fluids I'm putting him on an IV."

Sharon wheeled Chico back to his room as Suzanne, Mando, and Ed embraced each other.

Suzanne began to cry as she thought about Chico's condition. "I don't know what to do anymore. I don't think I can take much more of this."

Mando, along with Ed, embraced Suzanne as they silently prayed for Chico.

"I'm going to check on Sharon, see if he'll be alright." Ed hurried over to Chico's room.

Mando held Suzanne as he tried to calm her down. Tears ran down their faces as they prepared themselves for another trial with Chico.

Suzanne, frightened from Chico's condition, held on to Mando. Mando guided Suzanne to a small couch in the physical therapists office.

Rocking ever so Mando sat there with Suzanne trying to calm her down. "Shhh, Suzanne, we need to pray that everything will be alright."

"It's all my fault Mando" Suzanne cried. "If I hadn't bugged you to go get more of Edina's stuff none of this would of happened." Suzanne cried on Mando's shoulder.

Grasping her arms Mando pulled her away looking straight into her eyes. "Stop it Suzanne, it wasn't your fault. If anyone is to put the blame on someone it should be me. I took you away from Chico." Mando saddened eyes began to tear up.

"None of this ever would of happened if I would of left you two alone." Mando tried to hide his emotions.

Struggling to keep it inside him Mando emotionally held Suzanne.

"Damn it Suz, you have no idea what it was like seeing you and Edina together with Chico." Mando let go of Suzanne, leaning forward he tried to fight his feelings again.

"I, I don't know how I'm going to deal with this." Mando got up and paced the floor around Suzanne.

"I told Chico, that this marriage of ours was never meant to be." Mando tried so hard to control himself.

"Who am I kidding Suz, I still love you!" Mando walked closer to Suzanne as she struggled with Chico's condition and his own feelings.

"Suz, what are you going to do if Chico doesn't pull through this?" Mando grasped her arm trying to get her attention.

Suzanne looking at Mando couldn't handle his behavior. "Doesn't pull through? He has too. He has a daughter and another one on the way."

Mando went up to Suzanne's face. "Think about Suzanne. If Chico dies, you're going to be alone raising two kids."

Suzanne covered her face trying to hide from all what Mando said to her.

Mando came up to her and hugged her. " I'm canceling the divorce proceedings, Suzanne. You can't go through this alone. Together we need each other."

Suzanne silently embraced Mando as she thought of Chico's condition. "Mando I don't know what I'm going to do if Chico dies.

Suzanne released from Mando. "I must go see Ed. I'm sure he could use some support now." Suzanne rose off the couch as Mando followed her.

Slowly they made their way back to Chico's room. Suzanne looked into the room only to find Sharon adjusting Chico's IV as Ed leaned over Chico's bed pleading for his life.

Sharon looked over and seen Suzanne and Mando by the doorway. Heading over there she indicated to Suzanne and Mando to be quiet.

"He's resting finally. The Oxycodone has relieved some of Francisco's withdrawals." Sharon whispered as she motioned Suzanne and Mando the hall way by the room.

"I'm afraid Dad is taking this very hard. He is certain that he is going to lose Francisco." Sharon remarked.

"Can I see him?" Suzanne asked as she wiped his eyes.

"Yes, but make it brief, he needs his rest" Sharon said

Suzanne quietly walked in as Mando followed her.

Walking to the opposite side where Ed was. Suzanne leaned over and kissed Chico in the forehead.

"Chico, please for your children's sake get over this addiction." Suzanne whispered to Chico as Ed's tear stained eyes looked over to Chico then Suzanne.

"I thought things were looking up for Chico finally. With his therapy and his addiction from the pain killer they gave him." Ed, saddened, could hardly look at Suzanne.

Mando approached Ed to comfort him. "Ed, I'm so sorry, this is happening again for Chico."

Ed, saddened, turned angry as he looked up at Mando. "If you just had left Chico and Suzanne alone none of this would of happen."

Ed became furious. "What if Chico doesn't make it through the night." Ed covered his face as he broke down on Chico's bed.

"Some young kid shows up at my garage. Who could have had a better opportunity somewhere else decides to make a career as a mechanic in my garage."

Ed angrily rose up off Chico's bed. "He was more then a young kid. Chico was like a son to me." Ed grabbed Mando's shirt collar and pushed him out of Chico's room.

Suzanne saddened to see Ed so upset hugged Ed as she made her way out of Chico's room. Ed broke down and cried as well as Suzanne.

"We'll let you be alone with Chico Ed, I'll come back later " Suzanne whispered in Ed's ear as she released him from him.

Ed returned to his vigil on Chico's bedside as he embraced Chico's hand. Waiting, hoping for a miracle.

Hours passed by as Ed stayed by Chico's side. Leaning forward Ed prayed constantly for Chico to have some response.

Ed exhausted wiped his eyes has he tried to keep his faith regarding Chico's recovery. Ed gradually fell asleep leaning on Chico's bed waiting for any kind of hope.

Slowly waking up Chico wondered what happened to him. Trying to remember, he thought about his rehabilitation with Mando.

" I remember having my rehab... Everyone I can remember was there. Mando told Suzanne and I that he was granting a divorce for Suzanne and him..." Chico struggled to remember as he moved his hands.

Chico noticed his one hand was covered by someone else's. Chico slowly rose up, seeing Ed at his bed side.

As Chico's hand moved away from Ed's, Ed began to stir. "What, what's happening? Is he alright?" Ed mumbled as he slowly tiredly rose off of Chico's bed.

Ed rubbed his tearstained eyes and cheeks as he turned to see Chico sitting up.

"Oh Chico." Ed gasped. "I was so certain that you weren't going to make through out the night." Ed rose up off his chair and embraced Chico.

"Ed what happened?" Chico tried to say.

"You suffered a relapse, Chico. A severe one according to Sharon." Ed said.

"I just remember being at therapy and chatting with Mando and Suzanne," Chico rubbed his head. "Then I blacked out."

Ed picked the phone from Chico's bed table and dialed Suzanne's number. "Hello?" Suzanne said on the other end.

"Suzanne, this is Ed. I have someone here who would like to speak with you." Ed handed the phone to Chico.

Chico placing the phone against his ear began to speak." Hello bebe"

"Chico? Chico!" Suzanne cried.

"Oh God Chico, I don't know what to say. You were in such bad shape. We were all afraid you weren't going to make it through the night," Suzanne nervously spoke.

"Chico I have to tell Mando right away. He had decided that he was going to cancel the divorce proceedings all because he didn't want me to be alone if you passed away." Suzanne wiped her eyes as she took in the news of Chico's recovery

"Is he there? Can I speak with him?" Chico asked.

"Yeah Chico hold on..." Suzanne left to go get Mando.

Chico heard Suzanne speak in the back ground as he waited. "Mando. Mando wake up! It's Chico, he's alert." Suzanne excitedly told Mando.

"What? Chico? He's alert? Mi amigo!" Mando smiled.

"Amigo!" Mando shouted on the phone.

"Hey Mando! I'm back!" Chico smiled. "Did you miss me?" Chico grinned.

"Shut up Chico, of course I did. Are you loco?" Mando smiled.

"Suzanne, told me what you had planned on doing about canceling the divorce. I don't blame you Mando I would have done the same if I was in your shoes."

"Yes, yes that's true Chico." said Mando.

"Well now that I'm back from the dead so to speak are you still going through with it?" Chico asked.

"Chico, I am planning on going through the divorce proceedings. No need to worry brother," Mando reassured him.

"Hey Chico, I know it's late but we just have to see you," Mando said.

"You want to see me now?" Chico asked

Ed motioned to Chico as he whispered." Tell them to go through the emergency room entrance. I'll sneak them from there."

"Ok, ok. Mando, go to the emergency room entrance. Ed will sneak you in from there" Chico spoke.

"Alright Chico, we'll see you soon amigo!" Mando hung up the phone as Suzanne and Edina got ready.

Mando, Suzanne and Edina met Ed at the Emergency entrance. " I'm so glad you can make it!" Ed said as he hugged Mando and Suzanne. "Just follow me, I'll take you up to Chico's room."

Making their way without being noticed they all followed Ed up to Chico's room.

Ed opened the door to Chico's room. One by one they all entered in quietly. Edina noticed her father as she ran towards him. Suzanne lifted her up and sat her next to Chico.

"Edina, my girl I missed you" Chico reached over and gave her a big hug as Edina wrapped her small arms around her daddy's neck.

"Daddy!" Edina said as she smiled.

Suzanne came over to hug Chico. "I can believe in miracles now Chico. I had a bad feeling you were going to die."

"I'm too stubborn to die, Suzanne." Chico smiled as he hugged her.

Chico looked at Mando as he continued to hug her. "Thank you amigo, thank you for bringing us back together"

Suzanne released as she wiped her eyes.

Mando extended his hand to greet him. Chico shook his head no.

Mando backed off only to feel disappointed, as Chico extended his arms for an embrace.

Sighing in relief Mando welcomed Chico's invitation. "I'm so happy you're ok brother."

Ed cut in on Mando and Chico. "I hate to break this up but Chico needs his rest as we need to get out of here now." Ed pointed to the security guards and head nurses from the floor looking in their room.

Suzanne sighed as Ed told of there having to leave. Leaning over Suzanne hugged Chico good bye. "I can't tell how good it is to see you up and around."

Chico embraced as he kissed her on the cheek releasing her he held her hand as he kissed it.

Waving good bye Edina smiled to her father. "Come here you!" Chico extended his arms towards Edina as he hugged her. "Ah Edina, I love you so much!"

Ed gratefully shook Chico's hand. "We'll see you later for sure Chico." Mando patted Chico as he said good bye.

Everyone left along with the security guards towards the emergency room exit.

As the morning came Sharon walked in and checked on Chico.

"Hello Francisco!" Sharon smiled. "I hear that we have some good news regarding your recovery "

Chico rose up off the bed. "I get to go home?!"

Sharon checked his blood pressure and heart rate. "Well, not today. I understand that you made some great progress last night. With continuos therapy your legs should be strong enough to be able to function outside of the hospital"

"So I will get to go home soon!" Chico smiled.

"Yeah Francisco, just not today." Sharon rolled over the wheel chair as Chico scooted over to get on it.

Chico looked up at Sharon. "Well how soon then Sharon?"

Sharon continued to wheel Chico the physical therapy room. "Francisco, we'll see how you do today in your therapy. If I feel so, you can go home tomorrow and still come back here for continued rehab."

Looking up Chico smiled at Sharon.

"Now Francisco. Just because I mentioned that, I don't want you to over do it and end up injuring yourself. Ok?" Sharon opened the door to the therapy room as Chico rolled himself in.

Chico rolled over to the mat and locked the wheels to the chair.

"Here Francisco, let me help you up" Sharon began to help Chico out of his chair

"That's ok Sharon, I can do it" Chico smiled as Sharon looked on.

"Ok Francisco just please be careful" Sharon looked on as Chico slowly rose off the chair making his way towards the parallel bars.

Chico grasped upon the bars as Sharon went to the other side of them. Slowly and steadily Chico began his trek across the bars.

"That's good Francisco. Now turn around and walk back." Sharon motioned him to the other side.

As Chico turned around he grasped hold of the bars and began his trek back. Stopping mid way he became dizzy.

Sharon looked on as Chico stood there for a minute. "Are you ok Francisco?" Sharon came closer to him resting her hand on his arm.

"Yeah, I just turned around to fast. I'll be ok. I was thinking of my girl and my daughter as I kept moving. You know for inspiration."

Sharon backed away. "Yeah I understand Francisco."

Chico looked at her concerned. "Sharon, are you ok?"

Sharon shyly leaned against the pole as she confessed to Chico her feelings towards him.

"Francisco, I have to admit when I told that I had every nurse from the geriatric ward to the nursery wanted to help you. That is true. I kept changing the nurses schedules so I could be with you alone more."

Sharon placed her hand on Chico's shoulder. "I was becoming attached to you, Francisco."

Chico looked at her Curious. " But what about your roommate at home? Isn't he..."

"Chico, I lied. I'm so sorry, I had to cover myself to keep me from getting trouble at work." Sharon removed her hand off Chico's shoulder and wiped her eyes.

Chico hugged her. "I'm sorry Sharon if I lead you into anything. I guess that pain killer did a number on me. Making me act foolish and all."

Sharon released as he hugged her. "Are you kidding that was the most excitement we've had in months. Other nurse were trying their darndest to be apart of the action here on the floor."

Sharon analyzed Chico's progress. "Chico, I believe it is safe to say that you can go home tomorrow. " Sharon sighed.

"Really? You mean it?" Chico looked up as he raised his hands in the air. "Hallelujah!" Looking back down he noticed Sharon was getting upset as she covered her eyes.

Chico embraced Sharon. "Hey now, are you going to be ok? I'll never forget all your hard work you did getting back on track."

Chico began to become emotional. "Sharon you saved my life! I can see now how Ed is so proud to have a daughter like you!"

Sharon let go of Chico. "I'm sorry Francisco, that was really unprofessional of me." Sharon looked into Chico's eyes as she leaned forward to give Chico a kiss.

Chico didn't know what to make of Sharon's sudden move. Shaking his head to get back to reality he leaned against the balance beam that was near by.

"Sharon, please. I love my girl and my daughter. I've lost them before. I can't afford to lose them again." Chico embraced Sharon.

"Francisco, please don't tell anyone about this, please of all people don't tell my father." Sharon wiped her eyes.

"I won't say a thing Sharon, nothing happened." Chico reassured Sharon.

"Although I did mention something about this to dad. I just don't think he took it seriously." Sharon sighed.

"Come on Chico lets go to the office and find a walking cane to help your stability as you exercise your leg"

Sharon and Chico headed over to the office as they looked for a cane for Chico. Looking around the office. Sharon found several canes in different sizes and shapes.

"Here is one that will work great for you Chico. It's not too short just your height for you."

Chico took a hold of it and walked around with it.

"It's different and unique just like you" Sharon smiled.

Walking around the office Chico decided on this one. "Yeah Sharon, I like this one. You have a good eye for these kind of things."

Sharon filled out the forms for Chico's rehab as she proceeded in his releasing him tomorrow.

"Chico, I would like you to take a few strolls around the floor here then back at your room." Sharon bent down as she checked on Chico's leg.

"I see the brace has helped too. Continue to wear it as you work on your rehab. Eventually when we both feel it is necessary you can remove it." Sharon grasped upon Chico's thigh to adjust his knee brace to fit better.

"How does that feel Francisco?" Sharon sighed.

"Fits like a glove Sharon, thank you." Extending his hand Chico gave Sharon lift as she rose up. Sharon and Chico met face to face as she stood up.

Chico feeling saddened that she wasn't going to be around to help him out embraced her. Chico wrapped his arms around as he began to get upset.

"Sharon, I don't what I'd do without you. You've been so supportive of me. Giving me faith when I felt I couldn't go on. Dealing with my pain." Sharon released as she wiped the tears off Chico's eyes.

"Chico, we all care about you. I'm just so glad I was able to help you." Sharon embraced him. "I'm going to miss you when you leave."

Chico and Sharon released as they began Chico's trek back to his room. "Chico just take it slow and easy. You don't have the poles anymore to keep your balance."


Working up a sweat Chico began to pick up the pace a little bit." That's good Francisco, remember don't overdue it. It'll take time."

Chico and Sharon arrived to his room only to find Ed playing with Edina as she was jumping up and down on Chico's bed.

"What's going on?" Chico asked as he watched Suzanne pack his stuff. Chico looked at Sharon as he tried to figure out the commotion.

"Chico, I pulled some strings, you're able to leave today after all" Sharon smiled.

"What? So that's why...." Chico smiled as he embraced Sharon.

Sharon shook Chico's hand as she said good bye. "Good luck Francisco, I hope you have a smooth recovery."

Chico shook her hand as he leaned over to hug her. Getting emotional Chico embraced her. "Good bye Sharon, thank you for everything."

Sharon released waving good bye to her father and went about her rounds.

Chico slowly walked over to Ed and Suzanne. "I can't believe I am going home !" Chico smiled as he hugged Suzanne and Ed.

Chico caught Edina as she continued to jump and down on his bed. " Edina Louise, your daddy is going home." Chico smiled gave her a big hug.

Chico helped out as they finished packing his things. "Where's Mando? Is he out of town again?"

Suzanne hugged Chico. "Chico, Mando is at our apartment dropping my stuff and Edina's. He said he would stop by at the apartment later. He wanted us to be together when you get released from the hospital."

Ed carrying Chico's bags was ready to go.

Several nurses came in with a wheelchair for Chico. "We all had to say good bye to you before you go Francisco. We will miss your bedside manner!" said one of the nurses.

Chico smiled as he blushed from the nurse's comments.

"Well Francisco your chariot awaits!" Said the nurse holding the chair. The other nurses locked the brakes, waiting for Chico to get on.

"Thank you ladies, you've been so kind to me throughout my ordeal" Chico smiled as he sat on the chair. A nurse adjusted Chico's foot pedals as he was about to be wheeled out of his room.

Everyone followed Chico as he made his way to the admissions area to be escorted out. As Chico arrived at the admissions area, he, with the help of the nurse, was lifted off his chair.

"Good luck Francisco, we'll miss you! You take care now!" The nurse smiled as she wheeled Chico's wheel chair away.

Chico stretched his back as he grasped upon Suzanne's arm. "I'm ready to go home," Chico smiled as Ed, Suzanne and Edina headed on home.

Chapter 5

Chico used his cane as he carefully walked around the garage. Gradually Chico's memory slowly came back from all what happened with him and Mando since the accident. "It's great to be back home". Chico smiled as he absorbed every detail of the garage.

Slowly trekking to the apartment, Chico dug into his pocket grasping his keys. Chico smiled laughingly in disbelief as he placed his hand on the door. "To think I'd never see this place again. Now to see it with my girl and daughter". Chico released his hand off the door smiled as he shook his head of all that has happened with them.

Suzanne held onto Edina as she embraced Chico. " I almost thought you were never going to come home with us Chico". Suzanne sighed as she embraced him.

Opening the apartment door Chico glanced around the apartment since the accident. Chico was glad to have life back together with Suzanne and Edina in there own place.

Suzanne smiled as she noticed her and Edina's belongings that were back from Mando's apartment. Feeling a sense of security knowing that there was hope in their relationship after all, Suzanne was happy to be back home also.

Suzanne felt the weight of Edina press against her own pregnant body. Suzanne happily placed Edina down on the floor with her toys. "Here Edina, you're home at last, along with your toys". Looking at all the boxes of Edina's and Suzanne stuff, Suzanne began to put them away feeling relieved that she was able to begin her life with Chico again.

"I can't believe we are all here together". Chico said as he sat down on the recliner. Suzanne smiled as she picked up Edina's toys.

Chico began to get his legs straightened out to relax as Suzanne rose to help him. "Here Chico" Smiled Suzanne as she was about to pull the lever on the recliner. "Let me help you with that".

Chico held her back smiling." No, no hon. I got it besides, with you beginning to show. I don't you to over due it".

Suzanne sighed. "Chico, I'm fine, I'm pregnant remember. It's not like I got shot or something".

Suzanne in return hugged Chico giving him an embrace for his concern. "Chico, You have no idea how much I love you. To have you back in my life again is a gift that God has given me". Suzanne released from Chico kissing him.

Giving her a smirk, Chico looked at her from her remark as Suzanne sat down on the couch. Rising up he sat next to Suzanne. Chico put his arm around her as he leaned his head on her shoulder. "You know Suz, we both have gone through some very trying times lately".

"Tell me about it! " Suzanne sighed and leaned her head upon his. "God has ways of bringing people together". Suzanne placed her hand upon Chico's.

"Yeah, I wonder why ours has to be so painful". Chico moved around to get comfortable on the couch.

Stretching out his legs Chico, thinking of what has happened to them, decided to get up. " I think I better get up and move around". Chico slowly got up, limping a bit, grabbed his cane heading out the door.

Suzanne got up along with him. "Chico I'd like to come with you".

Chico hesitated her wanting to come along, yet helped her up. "I'm not going very far Suz. Just a walk around the garage I wanna loosen my leg up a bit".

"That's ok. I still would like to walk with you". Suzanne said.

Chico sighed " Alright"

Chico opened the door as he noticed the garage was a mess from the lack of business since his accident. Chico looked around discouraged at what he seen. "I don't believe this?" Chico kicked the trash around the garage as he was getting angry seeing the place in such shambles.

Suzanne watched Chico become angry as she noticed his heavy breathing. "What's wrong Chico?" Suzanne asked as she grasped Chico's arm.

Chico used his walking cane to bat against empty cans that where laying on the floor. "I see Ed let this place go to hell since I've been in the hospital". Chico, disappointed, threw a rag on the table.

Suzanne placed her hand on Chico's chest stopped him. "Chico ever since Ed found out from Della you got into that accident, he has spent all his time by your hospital bed praying for you. Ed never left your sight Chico".

Chico stood there, as he felt bad for snapping about Ed's mess. " Suzanne I'm so sorry. I don't know what came over me".

Suzanne embraced Chico. "Chico, you've been under so much trauma. Sooner or later you were bound to release it sometime ".

Chico started to walk around the garage as he began to struggle with his leg. Limping ever so, Chico felt frustrated. Looking around the mechanical equipment, Chico began to feel he was not the mechanic he used to be.

Chico turned around heading back to the apartment as his leg began to cramp up." OWWW" Chico hollered. Losing his balance, Chico tried to get support from his cane. Chico held on to his leg from the pain.

Chico collapsed on the floor grasping on to his leg as it gave out on him. Suzanne feared the look on Chico's face as she witnessed his pain." Oh Chico!" Suzanne cried. Suzanne rushed to Chico's side, as she was about to embrace him. "Chico, are you alright? Here let me help you up"

Chico reaching out his hand towards her, pushed Suzanne away "Don't! I can get up on my own!" Chico snapped. Suzanne, frightened from Chico's outburst, backed away. " Alright Chico".

Worried to see Chico in such pain Suzanne rested her hand on Chico. " Chico, I wish I could help you". Chico squinted while he grasped upon his leg. Chico stared at Suzanne while he tried to control his pain.

Suzanne crouched down to him. Suzanne tried to comfort Chico as she rested her hand on his as he struggled to get up. Pain shooting up his leg, Chico began to struggle as Suzanne tried to help him turn over.

Chico lay there as he tried to get up. Lifting himself with his hands, Chico's body began to shake.

With the look of fear Chico began to dread what was happening with him. "Oh God, I thought I was over with this!" Chico tried to keep his balance as the withdrawals effected his body again". Giving up from the withdrawal Chico relaxed as he collapsed on the floor.

Suzanne leaned down to check on Chico. " Oh God Chico, are you alright?" Chico grasped Suzanne's hand tightly as his body shook from the withdrawal.

Chico's concentration was fading as he lay there trying to fight the withdrawals. Suzanne embraced him holding his hand.

Chico cringed as sweat formed against his forehead while the pain continued. Chico finally relaxed as the withdrawal subsided.

Suzanne lightly brushed his hair back as she held him. " It'll be ok Chico. We'll get over this. I'm sure".

Ed heading down stairs from his apartment noticing Suzanne embracing Chico on the ground. Hurrying over Ed wondered what happened.

"Is he ok? I heard Chico screaming". Ed asked as he leaned over.

Chico began to breathe deeply, trying to relax. Lifting his head Chico consciously looked up, snapping at Suzanne and Ed.

" What! So I had a fricken attack again". Chico shook his head as he rubbed it, consciously getting himself together. "You better get used to it".

Discouraged Chico moved away from Suzanne's embrace as he raised himself up. "I'll probably be like this the rest of my life!" Quickly hobbling into the apartment Chico slammed the door.

"Oh God Ed, What are we going to do?" Suzanne asked. Ed placed his hand on Suzanne's shoulder.

" I don't know Suz", Ed said. " Hopefully his therapy will help him get through this".

Ed lifted Suzanne up. "Thanks Ed" Suzanne, now having to deal with Chico's behavior, opened the apartment door .

Suzanne found Chico laying on the recliner as she walked around him trying to avoid him to cause another outburst.

Chico noticed Suzanne was avoiding him. "What!... Oh so you're avoiding me now!"

Suzanne looked at him. " Why are you angry all of a sudden Chico?"

"Tell me something Suzanne" Chico pulled the chair up as he tried to get off as he tried to get off the recliner. Grabbing his walking cane Chico walked towards her.

" Look at me Suzanne. How can you love a crippled man like myself!" Chico grasped her arm looked straight in her eyes.

"Chico I love you no matter what happens to us" Suzanne feared Chico's angry look.

Suzanne backed away from him as he released from her. " Why are you walking away from me Suzanne. Are you afraid of a crippled man like myself?" Chico looked irritated.

"No Chico, I love you, you know that." Suzanne was cornered by the door. "With me being pregnant Chico, I just am so afraid of your attitude lately".

Chico looked at Suzanne funny. "Attitude? "

"I know the accident and therapy has been devastating to all of us who are close to you". Suzanne tried to control her breathing, as she became upset.

"I'm supporting you 100 percent Chico with your recovery. It's just been so hard on me. Almost losing you and everything" Suzanne cried.

Chico held her as he kept her from moving away from him " Look at me Suzanne. Because of that damn accident my leg is screwed up.

Chico shoved the cane in front her face. " I have to rely on this damn cane to get around! This is not how a man at my age is suppose to be!" Chico angrily threw the cane across the room making a loud noise as the cane hit the wall.

Suzanne frightened, flinched as she heard the cane hit the wall from the force of Chico's throw.

Upset Suzanne fell back on the couch as she cried. "I'm just trying to help out Chico".

Chico, angry, hobbled over, grabbing his coat. " You want to help out? Then just leave me alone ok".

Wiping her eyes Suzanne looked up as Chico opened the door. "Where are you going?"

Chico looked at Suzanne angry. "I'm going out!" Chico slammed the door a few minutes later Suzanne heard the garage entrance door slam shut.

Limping Chico angrily struggled to walk out of the garage entrance as he approached Della's store. Chico leaned against the building as he dealt with his pain in his leg.

"Ahh, I wish I wasn't in so much pain". Chico shifted his feet to relieve pressure from his sore leg.

Resting his head against the wall of the building Chico broke down. " I can't handle this anymore!"

Chico slid down the building approaching the ground. Leaning his elbow against an empty crate.

Chico sat there staring at his sore leg. " I feel so damn hopeless. How can I live like this?" Chico rested his head on his hand debating what to do with himself.

Della had begun to close up her store as she flipped the closing sign on her storefront window.

"Well another day another dollar" Della said as she locked the front door securing it tightly. " Now to clean up this mess then I can call it a day". Gathering all the trash together Della grabbed the bundle of trash bags and headed out the side door.

Walking towards the dumpster Della had the urge to throw them in from a distance. " Ah I feel lucky" Della said." I bet I could make it the dumpster from here". Della extended her arm way back throwing forward Della tossed the bags in one by one. Looking at her accomplishment. Della noticed she missed one as it lay upon the side of a crate.

"Drats!" Della shouted. Della walked over to the bag near the crate only to find Chico laying there. "Chico? What in blazes are you doing here? " Della bent over looking towards Chico. "Leave me alone!" Chico motioned with his hand. " Just let me rot here".

"What?" Della kneeled down towards Chico. " Tell me Chico, why on earth are you out here in the alley?" Chico, angry with himself, looked up at her. "Can't you see!" Chico grumped as he smacked his leg. "I'm useless! My leg is no good anymore". Della shook her head at Chico. " Now wait a minute Chico, I seen you just after your accident. This is nothing compared to what you looked like then".

Della couldn't understand Chico's behavior as she angrily got Chico up off the ground. Taking a hold of Chico's arm she decided to set him straight. "Listen you, I'll have none of that attitude around here".

Chico struggled as he tried to stand up. " What's the use Della. I have a bum leg. I'm just not the man I used to be!" Della took hold of Chico's arm. Dragging him towards her store. " Come inside with me mister, we need to talk". Della helped Chico as they both took there time heading back to her Store. Della opened her door motioning Chico to go on in and sit down. "Sit over there Chico, I'll be right back with some coffee for us".

Chico grabbed a near by chair as he sat down he tried to straighten out his leg. Della came back with a steaming pot of coffee and some sweet rolls.

Scooting her chair over towards Chico Della wondered what was up with Chico. "Now what makes you think you're not the man you used to be?" Chico showed Della his knee. "Look Della because of this bum leg, I can hardly walk anymore".

Della shook her head sighing then sipped her coffee. " Chico, do you think Suzanne wants to be with you just because of your body?" Della placed her hand upon Chico's chest. "Suzanne wants to be with you because of what's in your heart Chico". Della eyed Chico's slender muscular body. "Besides the rest of your body is pretty good" Della winking looked at Chico's long slender torso again. " Pretty damn good if I do say so myself".

"Stop it Della". Chico said angrily, trying not to smile.

"Chico you should know by now that you and Suzanne have a love that is real. You, Suzanne and Edina have gone through so much lately".

Chico brushed his hair back with his hands starting to feel sorry for himself as he showed pity.

Della placed her hand upon his. "Now with the baby coming you can't give up on life over a sore leg! For crying out loud Chico. It is not worth feeling sorry for yourself when you have friends and family who love you". Chico broke down crying while he sat there as he listened to Della. " I just don't want to be a burden to everyone anymore". Chico wiped his eyes as thought about all his troubles lately.

" Della, I've put Ed through so much misery. When we arrived home I notice how the garage was so much in shambles". Chico rubbed his eyes as he looked at Della. "Chico, I realize that. Ed closed down the garage while you were in the hospital. You mean more to Ed then that old dirty garage". Della sipped her coffee.

" Hon, how is Suzanne taking this?" Della placed her hand on Chico. Lowering his head Chico wiped his eyes." I've been very cranking about this Della. I took it out on Suzanne just before I bailed". Feeling disappointed Della shook her head at Chico. "Chico, in her condition? That's the last thing she needs from you, is you snapping at her".

"I know Della I'm sorry" Ashamed at how he acted Chico leaned forward on the table and covered his eyes.

"Telling me that Chico, isn't going to solve your problem" Della scolded. " I say we go back and you talk to her".

Chico looked up at Della. "Ok" Chico sighed.

Della rose from her seat as she assisted Chico out of his seat. Della grasped Chico's arm helping him as they walked out the door. "Didn't the doctor give a cane Chico?" Della asked as Chico embraced her arm.

Chico lowered his head in shame." Della I have one, I was so angry with myself I threw it against the wall before I left the apartment".

Della just shook her head. "Well hopefully we can work this out for the sake of Edina and her future little sibling".

Chico went to the door of the garage. Della cut in front of him. "Here Chico let me handle this". Della began to pound on the garage door.

Noticing the light turn on Della indicated to Chico as she pointed to the window that Suzanne was on her way.

Suzanne opened the door to find Della there." Hi Della, Come on in I could use some company". Della grasped the door stepped half way in. "Well I can't stay Suzanne but there is someone here who would like to talk to you". Chico scooted over peaking in at the doorway.

"Chico" Crying, Suzanne shook as she witnessed Chico's return

Chico carefully walked in and embraced her. Crying he wouldn't let go. Suzanne looked at Della as she whispered thank you to her. Della happily waved at Suzanne. Noticing that Chico and Suzanne were ok with each other decided to head back to her shop.

Chico embracing her released as he looked at Suzanne. "I'm so sorry Suzanne, please forgive me". Chico said as he tried to keep from getting upset. Together they stood there embracing each other as their tears fell upon one another.

Suzanne released as Chico carefully walked in the garage. Suzanne embraced his arm together they walked into the apartment.

Edina sat on the floor playing with her toys. Edina grasping a toy hammer banged against the toy workbench.

"Edina!" Chico smiled as he carefully bent down to play with her. Grasping a toy wrench Chico pretended he was working along with her.

Chico leaned over as her watched Edina play. "What are building Edina?" Edina smiled looked at her daddy. Box!" Edina said." Box, box, box, box, box!" Edina rose up walking around Chico giving him every little block she could get a hold of".

"Thank you Edina" Chico said as Edina placed each little block upon Chico's stomach.

Looking at the pile of blocks that were piling up upon him. Chico glanced up at Edina. "You have enough blocks here to build a house young lady."

Edina giggled as she went to retrieve more blocks. Chico turned over spilling Edina's pile of blocks on the floor. Grabbing Edina Chico sat her on his stomach.

"You know young lady some day your going to be a big sister to a little boy or a little girl" Chico smiled as Edina slowly started to doze as she sat on Chico's stomach. Grasping Edina Chico gently laid her upon him.

Suzanne came out of the see how Chico was doing as she noticed Edina resting upon Chico. Suzanne looked at Chico as he looked at her. Using his index fingers Chico pointed to Edina that he couldn't move because of her.

Chico motioned Suzanne to come closer to him." This is the first time a female has pinned me down". Suzanne looked at Chico in disbelief. "Chico, I find that hard to believe."

"Ok Suzanne, this time it wasn't against my will" Chico smiled.

Suzanne gently picked up Edina placing her in her crib just as there was a knock on the door. Chico carefully rose up as hobbled over to the door.

"Ed! Come on in". Ed walked in stepping over Edina's blocks. " Chico, I got all your mail together that I found in the box. I already filed my mail away."

Chico shook his head at Ed. "You threw your mail away again didn't you". Glancing at the bundle of letters Chico noticed one from Mando. " A letter from Mando. I hope it isn't an old letter telling me he's angry with me again". Chico sighed as he began to tear open the letter.

Suzanne came in noticing Ed. " Hello Ed" Suzanne embraced him. "What's that Chico? Looks pretty thick?" Chico began to take out the contents of the envelope. "Yeah Suzanne, that's what I was thinking". Opening up the folded pages Chico took in a deep breath and let it out feeling relieved as he sighed.

"What is it? Is it bad news?" Suzanne asked. Chico happily showed her the papers. "Not in the least Suzanne. It's your divorce papers from Mando" Chico showed her the documents. Chico smiled, as Suzanne felt relieved to finally be free again. Yet Chico noticed Suzanne's sudden silence.

"Suzanne are you ok?" Chico embraced her rubbed her back having a feeling he knew what it was about. "Yeah Chico, I just can't believe it's over". Suzanne leaned her head against Chico shoulder.

"Listen Suzanne, I know there was something going on between you and Mando when you were taken away from me". Chico ran his long slender finger through her hair. "I can understand how you're feeling Suz". Chico embraced her as she felt relaxed in Chico's arms. "I'm just so happy your here with me where we belong. Together". Chico embracing her held her tight.

"Chico there was never a day that I didn't love you. I'm just so thankful that Mando has given us the chance to be together again".

Ed decided to leave Chico and Suzanne alone after receiving the news of her divorce papers. Ed shook Chico's hand then hugged Suzanne good bye. As Ed left there apartment several pounding sounds came from the garage door.

Suzanne and Chico looked at each other wondering who that was. "I'll see who it is Chico" Ed yelled as he hurried over to the door. Ed forcefully opened the door finding Mando soaking wet from the rain out side. " Come in, Come in Mando". Ed anxiously said.

"Thanks Ed, it's been raining heavily for a while". Mando said as he messed with his hair drying it off.

Mando knocked on Chico's door. Chico opened it smiling. "Hey Amigo! Come in, come in." Chico looked at Mando drenched from the rain. "You must be soaked to the skin brother". Chico smiled as Suzanne came to greet Mando. "Mando it is good to see you again" Suzanne embraced Mando against his soaked clothes. "Here Mando have a towel to dry off". Mando gratefully took the towel as he dried off. Chico cleaned up the pile of blocks Edina left on the floor.

"Chico I see you been playing with Edina's toys!" Mando kidded.

Mando glanced around as he noticed the papers on the coffee table. "Amigo, you got your papers!"

Sitting down on the couch Suzanne motioned Mando to sit down. Suzanne sat next to Mando. "Yes, Mando, Ed found them in the mail box. Thank you" Suzanne embraced him. " Thank you for everything Mando". Chico sat at the other end of the couch as Suzanne sat between them. "Yeah Mando, Suzanne and I can finally get our life together".

Ed knocked on the door as he found some papers he wanted Chico to look over. " Chico, sorry to bother you I need your signature on a few invoices in the office. I'll go get them for you ok?"

Chico steadily rose up. "No, no Ed I'll there in a minute." Chico turned around just as he left. " I'll be right back".

Mando and Suzanne sat on the couch and caught up with each other. " I see you've pretty much made yourself back home Suzanne". Mando said.

"Yeah, Edina seems to be adjusting well". Suzanne smiled as she looked at Mando.

Smiling Mando waved at Edina. "I'm happy for her, Suzanne. She is a sweet little girl"

Mando casually placed his arm around Suzanne as he began to embrace her. Suzanne felt comfortable yet concerned with Mando's embrace.

"Are you ok Mando?" Suzanne asked.

Sighing Mando looked at Suzanne. "It's just getting hard for me to realize you're not a part of my life anymore ". Suzanne tried to pull back against Mando's embrace. " Mando it was your idea in the first place for the divorce remember?"

"Yeah Suz, I couldn't stand seeing Chico so angry that's why I gave you the divorce" Mando said as he embraced her. Placing her hand on Mando's shoulder Suzanne struggled as she took in Mando feelings for her again. " Mando, I'm a part of Chico's life now".

Mando sighed as he still held her. " I know Suzanne that's what is making it so hard for me".

Mando started to kiss her.

Suzanne released from Mando's kiss not understanding him.

"Hard for you?" Suzanne tried to move away from him as he continued to embrace her. " Mando, please Chico could walk in her any minute". Suzanne tried to fight Mando's affection.

"He was very angry earlier Mando. He is struggling emotionally because of his bad leg. All he needs right now is you making a move on me again". Suzanne began to fear for Chico's presence.

Sighing Mando backed away. Knowing Chico's behavior he began to relax and calm down. "Alright, alright. Listen Suz, I've got to talk to you about your baby you are carrying. Edina's younger sibling could actually be mine you know".

Suzanne kept her eye on the door of their apartment. " Yes Mando I realize that".

Mando shifting his legs crouched over towards Suzanne. "Suzanne if this Child is mine. I want to be apart of his or her life". Suzanne couldn't figure Mando out since he had just granted her the divorce. "Mando..." Suzanne sighed.

"Suzanne, listen. I am really feeling I can help raise the baby if he or she is mine". Mando concerned pleaded with Suzanne. "Mando, if that is so, then why the divorce? If the baby is yours then you're going to want to marry me all over again". Mando embracing Suzanne began to say something just as Chico opened the door. Chico walked in noticing Mando embracing Suzanne

"Sorry it took so long". Chico noticed Mando's behavior towards Suzanne. Chico ignored them as he carefully walked in. "No problem Chico, Suzanne and I were catching up on a few things. Well I better head on out Chico". Mando got up and shook hands with Chico as he waved goodbye to Suzanne and Edina. Chico walked with Mando out the door and seen him out. As Chico watched Mando leave the garage entrance he came back in.

Suzanne was about to get up as Chico stopped her. Sitting down Chico confronted her. "What was that all about?" Suzanne looked at Chico confused. "What was what all about?" Chico tried to control his temper that was rising. "I watched you and Mando embracing together. You didn't ask him to come back to you because of me did you?" Suzanne scared of Chico's anger moved over to the other side of the couch. "No Chico, why are you thinking like this?" Suzanne said.

"Listen Suz, I know how you two were together. I know since the accident things have changed between us". Suzanne confronted Chico before he continued. "Chico, I don't want to talk about this anymore. This is nonsense". Suzanne rose off the couch and walked away. "Then you can't admit it. Can you?" Chico carefully eased himself off the couch with his cane. Suzanne turned around looked directly to Chico. "Can't admit to what Chico?" Using his came Chico slowly struggled to walk over to Suzanne as he grasped her arm. "That you can't get over Mando". Suzanne grasped Chico's arm as she took Chico's cane from her other hand she tossed it over to the couch. "Damn it Chico, I'm tired of your petty jealousy towards Mando". Suzanne continued to grasp his arm as Chico eagerly tried to lean over to reach his cane.

"No you don't Chico" Suzanne pulled him towards her. "What are you doing I need that damn thing to get around". Chico snapped at her. Suzanne followed Chico as he tried to walk over to retrieve it. "Chico I've seen you walk around. You're babying your leg. All you want is sympathy and attention".

Suzanne grabbed Chico's walking stick and tossing it to the other side of the apartment. "All I get from you is anger and hostility".

Suzanne grasped Chico's arms as he tried to walk over to get the cane. Pulling him back towards her. Suzanne said the words Chico needed to hear. " Chico, I've decided to go about having a restraining order against Mando. I'm going to the police station to have a restraining order put against him so we can get on with our lives". Chico, sarcastically laughed." Yeah right Suzanne". Chico began to walk towards his walking cane. Suzanne forcefully pushed Chico against the wall. Grabbing Chico's arm she directed him to her attention. Looking straight into Chico's eyes Suzanne set Chico straight. " Chico, I mean it. My live is with you, Edina and our upcoming baby".

Chico did not take Suzanne seriously as he lowered his head to ignore her. "Chico, why do you have to be so hard headed".

"When the time comes I want to marry you and renew our life together with our daughter Edina Louise and ...our son". Suzanne placed her hand upon his arm to comfort him. Silence filled the air as Chico tried to ignore her. Thinking of what Suzanne said Chico finally registered what he had heard. "Son?" Lifting up his head Chico looked curious.

"We're having a son? A boy?" Chico asked. Suzanne smiled as she wiped her eyes. " Yes. Chico, we are having a son. The sonogram indicates a boy". Chico felt shame come across him as he hugged her. " Suzanne, I am so sorry for being so stubborn"

Chico embraced her kissing her ever so. " Suzanne, I believed you now, when you mentioned your having a restraining order put on Mando" Chico grasped Suzanne's hand as they both walked over to the couch." I guess I was still foggy over this whole situation finally coming to a close with you and Mando." Chico helped Suzanne to the couch as he sat down next to her.

Suzanne leaned back on the couch, as she was feeling uncomfortable from her pregnancy. Passing Suzanne a couple of pillows Chico helped her place them behind her adjust them as she sat still.

"Are you ok Suz?" Chico held her gently rubbing her hand. Suzanne placed her hands upon her belly. " Yeah Chico, He's a kicker". Chico hustled over as he got a wet washcloth wiping her forehead". Suzanne tried to sit up. "As soon as I feel better Chico, let's go to the police station and go about that restraining order".

Chico agreed yet hesitated. " Do you think we should get together with Mando and discuss this before we go about proceedings?"

Suzanne rubbed her belly. "Possibly Chico, yet when he finds out we put a restraining order against him, who knows what he'll do".

Chico embraced her as he leaned towards her, placing his hand over hers on her belly. "I'll do all I can to keep us together Suzanne. I'll make sure Mando doesn't come between us again".

Suzanne began to move around as she tried to get comfortable. Chico noticed how uncomfortable she was.

"Suz, are you sure your alright?" Chico placed his hand on hers and gently stroking her hand with his thumb.

Suzanne grasped her back as she continued to try to get comfortable. "Yeah, I think so Chico". Chico beginning to worry rose up and wanting to call the doctor. "Suz, I'm calling the doctor I don't want to take a chance of you losing the baby!"

Chico grabbed his cane struggling as he walked hurried over to the office. Ed wandered downstairs. "What's the hurry Chico?"

Chico looked back at Ed as he entered the office." Suzanne's not feeling well. I'm calling the doctor to have her come in". Ed concern decided to see Suzanne.

Ed knocked on the door as he quietly opened it. "Hi Suzanne, are you ok?" Ed asked as he sat down on the couch with her. "I seen Chico hurry over to the office"

"I'm just feeling very uncomfortable lately" Suzanne hugged Ed. "Thank you for your concern" Suzanne placed her hand upon his." Chico is beginning to realize now that we are a family again. Now that I have mentioned about having a restraining order against Mando".

Ed did a double take as he heard Suzanne speak. " A restraining order against Mando?" Ed thought about the relationship with the three of them. " I thought you three were hitting it off again".

"Ed, remember when you came in earlier about Chico signing the invoices? Mando and I were alone. Mando did try to make a move on me as he embraced me. Mando kissed me". Suzanne tried to get herself together.

Ed shook his head in disbelief. " Did he try to seduce you again?"

"When I told him that Chico could come in any minute he backed off. He is certain that this baby I'm carrying is his Ed". Suzanne struggled with her discomfort. "Mando said he was willing to help take care of him if that is true".

"Him Suzanne, your having a boy" Ed smiled. "Well I bet Chico is happy to hear that".

"Yet, if Mando is so determined to help raise the baby, why the divorce?" Ed asked.

"That's what I said too Ed," Suzanne rubbing her back. " Ed I'm concerned though about Chico's anger lately. He walked in when Mando and I embraced. That's all that happened, Ed. I swear! Chico thinks I'm still hung up on Mando".

Ed looked directly at her. "Well are you?"

Suzanne looked straight in Ed's eyes. "Yes, yes I am."

Ed scratched his head. "Your still hung up on him. Yet you moved back with Chico..."

"But I'm not in love with him like I thought I was earlier Ed. If I wasn't, I would told Mando and Chico the day Mando told us at the hospital."

Ed, shaking his head, agreed. "That's why you two want the restraining order."

"Yes Ed, I want to go on with my life with Chico and Edina. Mando is a sweet person. I just don't have the same feelings for him like I used too".

"When are you going through with the restraining order?" Ed asked.

"We'll go to the police station after we visit the doctor. I don't think it's anything serious."

Chico came back after calling the doctor. "All set Suzanne. Sorry it took so long. I had to convince them it was an emergency in order to get you in today".

Ed picked Edina. "I'll keep an eye on Edina ok?"

Chico smiled. "Thanks Ed, we shouldn't be too long"

"Take your time, take your time". Ed smiled. "Edina can show me how she play with her work bench!" Ed smiled at Edina.

Chico and Ed helped Suzanne as they headed out the door to the doctor.

Chico and Suzanne arrived at the doctor's office. Chico held Suzanne's hand, as he was worried about Suzanne and the baby.

" I called a short time ago regarding my girls condition" Chico eagerly said to the receptionist.

"Yes, yes, bring her on in the doctor is waiting in room 6". The nurse came in the waiting room as she escorted Suzanne to the examination room.

With the assistance of his cane Chico nervously paced the floor fearing something was wrong. The receptionist watched Chico struggle as he paced back and forth.

"Are you ok sir?" asked the receptionist.

"Yeah, I'm nervous I'm afraid something is wrong with our son" Chico choked up. "I mean the baby Suzanne is carrying"

Chico stopped as he thought of his careless behavior regarding his leg. "Here I've been whining like a baby about my stupid leg and Suzanne could be losing the baby". Chico carefully paced towards the receptionist. " Ma'am, Is there away I can be with her right now". The receptionist cornered a nurse to see if they were done examining Suzanne. " The nurse will be with you in just a minute sir".

Chico patiently waited for the nurse to escort him to her examination room. The door opened up as a nurse came out looking for Chico." Chico Rodriguez?"

Chico turned around looking at the nurse. "Yes, I'm Chico"

"Please follow me" Chico followed the nurse to the examination room where Suzanne was.

Opening the door Chico looked worried as he found Suzanne upset. Chico worried hurried over to her. Placing his arm around her Chico embraced her." Is the baby alright?"

Suzanne raised her head as she looked at Chico. "Chico the babies heartbeats are dropping?"

Worried Chico held Suzanne. "Babies heartbeats?" Chico shook his head tried to let it all sink in.

Chico looked directly at her. "Are saying what I think you're saying?"

"Yes Chico" Suzanne embraced Chico. "They did an ultrasound and we found the other baby. Chico, the doctor said I have to not be around stressful situations right now. Any more stress could cause me to miscarry".

Chico embraced Suzanne worried for her health and the babies. Gently rubbing Suzanne's back Chico became upset." Suzanne, I'm so sorry I've been so selfish lately about myself. All my anger towards you and Mando could have prevented this from happening. My concern now is for your health and the babies". Chico buried his head on Suzanne's shoulder as he cried. "Suzanne please forgive me".

Suzanne felt Chico long locks of hair as she ran her fingers threw them. "Chico, we'll get through this. I know we will".

Chico raised his head as he looked straight into her eyes. " I'll never forgive myself if you end up losing those babies". Chico embraced her as Suzanne held on to him when the doctor came in." Mr. Rodriguez?" The Doctor shook Chico's hand. " Are you the babies' father?" Chico casually sat down on the wheeled step stool next to the Doctor. "Doctor I'm sure of it".

The Doctor looked at Chico concerned as he looked over to Suzanne. " Suzanne, have you had other partners?"

Looking over to Chico, as Suzanne knew Chico and her had to tell the Doctor her relationship regarding Mando.

"Yes, Doctor, I had a relationship with a good friend of Chico's". Suzanne grasped Chico's hand for support.

Chico concerned placed his hand upon hers. " Why Doc? What's wrong, are the babies going to be aright?"

The Doctor sighed as he closed Suzanne's folder." Chico, Suzanne, I'm afraid there's a possibility we will need to do more tests on Suzanne. I will need your blood type for future reference if needed".

"If needed?" Chico concerned worried over Suzanne and the babies.

"This is only a precaution Mr. Rodriguez. Suzanne isn't in serious danger of her pregnancy. I'm just concerned for the baby in the long run. If for any apparent reason the fathers blood work is needed".

"So she'll be ok? And the babies?" Chico asked.

"Yes, Mr. Rodriguez, If she follows my strict orders of not being involved in stressful situations she should be able to carry full term".

Chico relieved embraced Suzanne. "She'll be alright doc. You have my word."

The Doctor concerned placed his hand on Suzanne's. "Suzanne, this other partner you had. Does he know about this pregnancy?"

Suzanne looking at Chico worried how Mando was going to take the restraining order." Yes, Doctor. "Yes Doc. He had mentioned to me if the baby or babies were his he was willing to help raise them".

Chico had no idea of Mando's decision. "What? He said that? Then why did he grant you the divorce?!" Chico's anger started to show as he tried desperately to hide it in front of Suzanne and the Doctor.

"Great! Just great! " Chico rose off the stool and paced in front of the Doctor and Suzanne as the Doctor looked at her.

"Mr. Rodriguez, you'll have to remain calm in front of your girlfriend in order for her to keep her from Stressing".

Suzanne cut in as Chico was about to speak, "We are going to the police station after we see you Doctor. I'm having a restraining order put against Mando to keep him away from us".

Chico leaned against the examination room door. " Do you honestly think that will work Suzanne?"

Suzanne looked at Chico to calm him down. "Anything is possible Chico. Please for the sake of your children Chico have a little faith".

"Well, if the restraining order works out for all of you. I see no harm in that. As long as you follow my strict orders Suzanne. Is that clear?"

Chico and Suzanne agreed with the Doctors orders then left the doctors office preparing themselves for their visit to the police station.


Chico and Suzanne arrived at the police station waiting in the lobby Chico suggested that Suzanne sit down and rest." Suz, why don't you sit down for awhile, I'll take care of this. If they need you, I'll come and get you ok?"

Chico cornered someone about a restraining order for Mando. Filling out the paper work, Chico asked Suzanne to see him. "Suzanne, they need your signature to complete this order." Suzanne rose as she approached the front desk to sign her signature.

Suzanne read the agreement as she got ready to sign the papers. "God Mando, please don't hold a grudge against Chico or me". Suzanne thought as she signed her name. Signing her name on the appropriate line Suzanne was ready to start her life over again with Chico. " Here officer" Suzanne gave the papers to the officer as the officer in return gave her own copy.

Chico and Suzanne headed on back to the garage feeling a sense of reality now that the restraining order was in full swing.

Heading into the garage Chico looked for Ed. " Ed! " Suzanne walked into the apartment.

"Whadda want !" Ed hollered as he was fixing up old tires to use as a swing for a Edina.

"We have just came back from the doctor and the police station".

Ed finished tying up the tires together. "Is Suzanne and the baby ok?" Ed looking concerned placed his hand on Chico's shoulder.

Chico placed his hand upon his Ed's "The Doctor gave us very unexpected news some good some bad". Chico watched Suzanne close the apartment door.

Ed saddened became concerned. "Oh no Chico, is there something wrong with the baby?"

Chico smiled. "No the babies are doing fine. Although she needs to be way from stress for a while"

Ed looked confused " Babies? NO Chico!" Ed stunned looked at Chico." She's having twins?" Ed smiled.

"Yeah, We went to the police station afterwards and filled out the restraining order against Mando". Chico looked around to see if Suzanne was around. " I know for sure Mando isn't going to like that at all"

Picking up Edina Chico was worried again about Mando's behavior." I'm afraid once he finds out, he'll do something outrageous again".

"Well young lady" Chico lifted her up in the air. "I do believe it is time for your nap". Carrying her Chico held her side ways swinging her like a plane.

"I do believe your old man could use one too". Edina waved good bye to Ed as Chico and her left to go into the apartment.

Ed continued to build Edina's tire swing just as Mando walked into the garage. "Hello old folks!" Mando casually walked in spotting Ed.

"Hey have you seen Chico? I have a few things for him". Mando asked as he leaned back against the workbench.

"You just missed him Mando. I'll leave him a message letting him know you were here." Ed asked as he put the tires away in the storeroom.

"No that's ok" Mando hollered over to Ed. "I'll leave Chico a note and put it by his door". Mando looked for a pad of paper and a pen. Finding the pad of paper Mando also stumbled across another piece of paper with his name on it. "What's this?" Mando wondered as he continued to read the paper. Mando realized it was a restraining order against him.

"What the hell is this!" Mando looking at the document closer to him continued to read." A restraining order." Mando, beside himself paced the floor deciding to pound on Chico's door.

"He better be in there!" Mando continued to pound on the door. Shortly there after Chico opened the door wondering what all the commotion was all about.

"I'm coming, I'm coming!" Chico yelled inside the apartment. Opening the door Chico found Mando in front of the door holding the document in front of his face.

"What the hell is this all about Chico!" Mando angrily said.

Chico grabbed Mando's arm pulling him inside his apartment. "Shhhh! Edina and Suzanne are finally asleep!"

Mando fiercely pulled his arm away from Chico. Quietly argued. "Chico! I willingly gave you and Suzanne the divorce so you two can go on with your lives. Then you throw this in my face!"

Chico motioned Mando for him to sit down. "Mando, Suzanne wasn't feeling well this morning. We decided to see the doctor. It was the doctors idea for her to find any way to keep from stressing out".

Mando fidgeted around, as he felt concerned for the baby and Suzanne. " Stressing out? Is the baby ok? Is Suzanne ok?"

Chico leaned over leaning his chin upon his folded hands. "Mando, she's having twins".

Mando shocked, looked at Chico. "You're kidding?"

"No Mando, with our relationship and you being apart of it, now claiming that the babies she's carrying is yours, she became upset and wasn't feeling well".

"We, including the doctor, thought it was best to find any way possible from her losing the babies."

Mando rose up agitated. "So that's why you have the restraining order against me! After I graciously gave Suzanne the divorce?"

Mando paced the floor not believing what he was hearing." Chico, I thought you were more loyal as a friend than that. Especially after what I did for you and Suzanne".

Chico rose up following Mando. " Mando you have to understand we only did it for the sake of Suzanne's health and the babies!"

Mando turned around looking at Chico." In other words Chico, you don't trust me!" Mando shook his head in disbelief

Mando angrily held on to the doorknob. " I thought you knew me better then that". Mando upset tried to keep in his anger. Giving up Mando angrily went up to Chico. " Chico when you least expect it. Expect it. When she has her DNA testing done, if those babies are mine Chico, I will fight till the death for custody of those babies!"

Mando opened the door and hurried out as he slammed the door shut.

Although Chico expected his behavior from Mando, Chico was stunned as he stood by the closed door.

Looking over to Edina. Chico hurried over as he watched her stir around from the noise. "It's ok Edina" Chico adjusted her covers as he thought about what Mando did to her before. "God, I just hope he doesn't do anything drastic like he with you before Edina". Chico leaned down to kiss her forehead.

"What's happening Chico?" Suzanne woke up wondering why Chico seemed upset.

"Don't worry Suzanne, I took care of it. Hopefully for the last time". Chico embraced Suzanne.

Chico lay down beside Suzanne thinking about there future along with the babies' health. Chico turned over as he embraced Suzanne. "I hope we can be together forever Suzanne". Chico whispered.

Suzanne turned over after hearing Chico whisper to her. "Chico, I'll do anything I have to keep us together. Our daughter and the babies will be a family again".

Chico leaned over as he embraced Suzanne. Kissing her he felt relaxed in her arms again.

"Suzanne I want to believe this is finally happening with us". Chico leaned towards Suzanne as he kissed her passionately. Suzanne escaped her troubles as Chico kissed her yet Chico feared for their relationship again as he thought of Mando's outburst regarding his restraining order. Chico released as he whispered good night to Suzanne. Embracing her stomach he whispered good night to the babies.

With the morning approaching Chico woke up early still concerned over Suzanne's health and Mando's remarks from the day before.

Turning over Chico embraced Suzanne hoping life come become normal once the babies arrive. Turning over Suzanne embraced Chico, sensing a feeling of concern from Chico she continued to embrace him. "Chico, I can tell something is troubling you. What's wrong? Did you and Mando have a falling out again?"

Chico sighed as he heard her words regarding Mando. " Suzanne, we need to talk". Chico rose up as he began to tell her about Mando's outburst.

"What happened?" Suzanne rose leaning against Chico's shoulder.

Leaning towards her Chico kissed the top of her head." Suz, I feel you should know about this, Yet I don't want to upset you...."

"Why, what's wrong?..." Suzanne concerned grasped Chico's hand.

"Mando got a hold of the copy of the restraining order against him when he was here". Chico wrapped his arm around her tried to comfort her.

"He pounded on the door when you and Edina went to bed".

"Chico, I bet he was furious!" Suzanne said,

"He was surprised that you were having twins till I mentioned about the doctors visit and your condition. He was more then furious Suzanne, he claimed that if the twins end up to be his he was going to fight till the death for custody." Chico held her afraid of losing her.

"Chico, I don't know what to say?" Suzanne began to get upset.

Chico held her closer to him. "Please Suzanne don't let Mando get to you. That is why I - we - have a restraining order against him".

Suzanne carefully turned over as she got out of bed. "Chico what if he tries to do anything crazy like he did when we got married".

Chico rose up out of bed coming towards her he embraced her. "Suz, I know we just have to be extremely careful between now and the birth of the twins".

Suzanne embraced Chico." Chico, if the twins happen to be Mando's please don't hold it against Mando or me".

Chico listened to Suzanne's remark. Sighing Chico embraced her hoping that the twins were his very own.

Chico rose out of bed and assisted Suzanne up also. "Suz, as soon as the twins are born that will give us enough to get married. I want this wedding of ours to take place secretly so Mando doesn't make a another attempt to disrupt us again".

Suzanne embraced Chico. " That is a good idea".

Chico hugged her as he comforted her. " In fact no one will know except you and I when we decide when that will be. I don't want to put any pressure on Ed and Della".

Suzanne looked up at Chico with tears in her eyes." Chico do you think this will finally happen? I want so badly to be officially Mrs. Chico Rodriguez".

Chico looked at her as he kissed her. "Yes Suzanne, someday we will be together forever no one will hold us back this time".

Arriving back from the hospital Suzanne, Ed, and Edina were glad that Chico was finally home.

Chico used his cane as he carefully walked around the garage. Gradually Chico's memory slowly came back from all what happened with him and Mando since the accident. "It's great to be back home". Chico smiled as he absorbed every detail of the garage.

Slowly trekking to the apartment, Chico dug into his pocket grasping his keys. Chico smiled laughingly in disbelief as he placed his hand on the door. "To think I'd never see this place again. Now to see it with my girl and daughter". Chico released his hand off the door smiled as he shook his head of all that has happened with them.

Suzanne held onto Edina as she embraced Chico. " I almost thought you were never going to come home with us Chico". Suzanne sighed as she embraced him.

Opening the apartment door Chico glanced around the apartment since the accident. Chico was glad to have life back together with Suzanne and Edina in there own place.

Suzanne smiled as she noticed her and Edina's belongings that were back from Mando's apartment. Feeling a sense of security knowing that there was hope in their relationship after all, Suzanne was happy to be back home also.

Suzanne felt the weight of Edina press against her own pregnant body. Suzanne happily placed Edina down on the floor with her toys. "Here Edina, you're home at last, along with your toys". Looking at all the boxes of Edina's and Suzanne stuff, Suzanne began to put them away feeling relieved that she was able to begin her life with Chico again.

"I can't believe we are all here together". Chico said as he sat down on the recliner. Suzanne smiled as she picked up Edina's toys.

Chico began to get his legs straightened out to relax as Suzanne rose to help him. "Here Chico" Smiled Suzanne as she was about to pull the lever on the recliner. "Let me help you with that".

Chico held her back smiling." No, no hon. I got it besides, with you beginning to show. I don't you to over due it".

Suzanne sighed. "Chico, I'm fine, I'm pregnant remember. It's not like I got shot or something".

Suzanne in return hugged Chico giving him an embrace for his concern. "Chico, You have no idea how much I love you. To have you back in my life again is a gift that God has given me". Suzanne released from Chico kissing him.

Giving her a smirk, Chico looked at her from her remark as Suzanne sat down on the couch. Rising up he sat next to Suzanne. Chico put his arm around her as he leaned his head on her shoulder. "You know Suz, we both have gone through some very trying times lately".

"Tell me about it! " Suzanne sighed and leaned her head upon his. "God has ways of bringing people together". Suzanne placed her hand upon Chico's.

"Yeah, I wonder why ours has to be so painful". Chico moved around to get comfortable on the couch.

Stretching out his legs Chico, thinking of what has happened to them, decided to get up. " I think I better get up and move around". Chico slowly got up, limping a bit, grabbed his cane heading out the door.

Suzanne got up along with him. "Chico I'd like to come with you".

Chico hesitated her wanting to come along, yet helped her up. "I'm not going very far Suz. Just a walk around the garage I wanna loosen my leg up a bit".

"That's ok. I still would like to walk with you". Suzanne said.

Chico sighed " Alright"

Chico opened the door as he noticed the garage was a mess from the lack of business since his accident. Chico looked around discouraged at what he seen. "I don't believe this?" Chico kicked the trash around the garage as he was getting angry seeing the place in such shambles.

Suzanne watched Chico become angry as she noticed his heavy breathing. "What's wrong Chico?" Suzanne asked as she grasped Chico's arm.

Chico used his walking cane to bat against empty cans that where laying on the floor. "I see Ed let this place go to hell since I've been in the hospital". Chico, disappointed, threw a rag on the table.

Suzanne placed her hand on Chico's chest stopped him. "Chico ever since Ed found out from Della you got into that accident, he has spent all his time by your hospital bed praying for you. Ed never left your sight Chico".

Chico stood there, as he felt bad for snapping about Ed's mess. " Suzanne I'm so sorry. I don't know what came over me".

Suzanne embraced Chico. "Chico, you've been under so much trauma. Sooner or later you were bound to release it sometime ".

Chico started to walk around the garage as he began to struggle with his leg. Limping ever so, Chico felt frustrated. Looking around the mechanical equipment, Chico began to feel he was not the mechanic he used to be.

Chico turned around heading back to the apartment as his leg began to cramp up." OWWW" Chico hollered. Losing his balance, Chico tried to get support from his cane. Chico held on to his leg from the pain.

Chico collapsed on the floor grasping on to his leg as it gave out on him. Suzanne feared the look on Chico's face as she witnessed his pain." Oh Chico!" Suzanne cried. Suzanne rushed to Chico's side, as she was about to embrace him. "Chico, are you alright? Here let me help you up"

Chico reaching out his hand towards her, pushed Suzanne away "Don't! I can get up on my own!" Chico snapped. Suzanne, frightened from Chico's outburst, backed away. " Alright Chico".

Worried to see Chico in such pain Suzanne rested her hand on Chico. " Chico, I wish I could help you". Chico squinted while he grasped upon his leg. Chico stared at Suzanne while he tried to control his pain.

Suzanne crouched down to him. Suzanne tried to comfort Chico as she rested her hand on his as he struggled to get up. Pain shooting up his leg, Chico began to struggle as Suzanne tried to help him turn over.

Chico lay there as he tried to get up. Lifting himself with his hands, Chico's body began to shake.

With the look of fear Chico began to dread what was happening with him. "Oh God, I thought I was over with this!" Chico tried to keep his balance as the withdrawals effected his body again". Giving up from the withdrawal Chico relaxed as he collapsed on the floor.

Suzanne leaned down to check on Chico. " Oh God Chico, are you alright?" Chico grasped Suzanne's hand tightly as his body shook from the withdrawal.

Chico's concentration was fading as he lay there trying to fight the withdrawals. Suzanne embraced him holding his hand.

Chico cringed as sweat formed against his forehead while the pain continued. Chico finally relaxed as the withdrawal subsided.

Suzanne lightly brushed his hair back as she held him. " It'll be ok Chico. We'll get over this. I'm sure".

Ed heading down stairs from his apartment noticing Suzanne embracing Chico on the ground. Hurrying over Ed wondered what happened.

"Is he ok? I heard Chico screaming". Ed asked as he leaned over.

Chico began to breathe deeply, trying to relax. Lifting his head Chico consciously looked up, snapping at Suzanne and Ed.

" What! So I had a fricken attack again". Chico shook his head as he rubbed it, consciously getting himself together. "You better get used to it".

Discouraged Chico moved away from Suzanne's embrace as he raised himself up. "I'll probably be like this the rest of my life!" Quickly hobbling into the apartment Chico slammed the door.

"Oh God Ed, What are we going to do?" Suzanne asked. Ed placed his hand on Suzanne's shoulder.

" I don't know Suz", Ed said. " Hopefully his therapy will help him get through this".

Ed lifted Suzanne up. "Thanks Ed" Suzanne, now having to deal with Chico's behavior, opened the apartment door .

Suzanne found Chico laying on the recliner as she walked around him trying to avoid him to cause another outburst.

Chico noticed Suzanne was avoiding him. "What!... Oh so you're avoiding me now!"

Suzanne looked at him. " Why are you angry all of a sudden Chico?"

"Tell me something Suzanne" Chico pulled the chair up as he tried to get off as he tried to get off the recliner. Grabbing his walking cane Chico walked towards her.

" Look at me Suzanne. How can you love a crippled man like myself!" Chico grasped her arm looked straight in her eyes.

"Chico I love you no matter what happens to us" Suzanne feared Chico's angry look.

Suzanne backed away from him as he released from her. " Why are you walking away from me Suzanne. Are you afraid of a crippled man like myself?" Chico looked irritated.

"No Chico, I love you, you know that." Suzanne was cornered by the door. "With me being pregnant Chico, I just am so afraid of your attitude lately".

Chico looked at Suzanne funny. "Attitude? "

"I know the accident and therapy has been devastating to all of us who are close to you". Suzanne tried to control her breathing, as she became upset.

"I'm supporting you 100 percent Chico with your recovery. It's just been so hard on me. Almost losing you and everything" Suzanne cried.

Chico held her as he kept her from moving away from him " Look at me Suzanne. Because of that damn accident my leg is screwed up.

Chico shoved the cane in front her face. " I have to rely on this damn cane to get around! This is not how a man at my age is suppose to be!" Chico angrily threw the cane across the room making a loud noise as the cane hit the wall.

Suzanne frightened, flinched as she heard the cane hit the wall from the force of Chico's throw.

Upset Suzanne fell back on the couch as she cried. "I'm just trying to help out Chico".

Chico, angry, hobbled over, grabbing his coat. " You want to help out? Then just leave me alone ok".

Wiping her eyes Suzanne looked up as Chico opened the door. "Where are you going?"

Chico looked at Suzanne angry. "I'm going out!" Chico slammed the door a few minutes later Suzanne heard the garage entrance door slam shut.

Limping Chico angrily struggled to walk out of the garage entrance as he approached Della's store. Chico leaned against the building as he dealt with his pain in his leg.

"Ahh, I wish I wasn't in so much pain". Chico shifted his feet to relieve pressure from his sore leg.

Resting his head against the wall of the building Chico broke down. " I can't handle this anymore!"

Chico slid down the building approaching the ground. Leaning his elbow against an empty crate.

Chico sat there staring at his sore leg. " I feel so damn hopeless. How can I live like this?" Chico rested his head on his hand debating what to do with himself.

Della had begun to close up her store as she flipped the closing sign on her storefront window.

"Well another day another dollar" Della said as she locked the front door securing it tightly. " Now to clean up this mess then I can call it a day". Gathering all the trash together Della grabbed the bundle of trash bags and headed out the side door.

Walking towards the dumpster Della had the urge to throw them in from a distance. " Ah I feel lucky" Della said." I bet I could make it the dumpster from here". Della extended her arm way back throwing forward Della tossed the bags in one by one. Looking at her accomplishment. Della noticed she missed one as it lay upon the side of a crate.

"Drats!" Della shouted. Della walked over to the bag near the crate only to find Chico laying there. "Chico? What in blazes are you doing here? " Della bent over looking towards Chico. "Leave me alone!" Chico motioned with his hand. " Just let me rot here".

"What?" Della kneeled down towards Chico. " Tell me Chico, why on earth are you out here in the alley?" Chico, angry with himself, looked up at her. "Can't you see!" Chico grumped as he smacked his leg. "I'm useless! My leg is no good anymore". Della shook her head at Chico. " Now wait a minute Chico, I seen you just after your accident. This is nothing compared to what you looked like then".

Della couldn't understand Chico's behavior as she angrily got Chico up off the ground. Taking a hold of Chico's arm she decided to set him straight. "Listen you, I'll have none of that attitude around here".

Chico struggled as he tried to stand up. " What's the use Della. I have a bum leg. I'm just not the man I used to be!" Della took hold of Chico's arm. Dragging him towards her store. " Come inside with me mister, we need to talk". Della helped Chico as they both took there time heading back to her Store. Della opened her door motioning Chico to go on in and sit down. "Sit over there Chico, I'll be right back with some coffee for us".

Chico grabbed a near by chair as he sat down he tried to straighten out his leg. Della came back with a steaming pot of coffee and some sweet rolls.

Scooting her chair over towards Chico Della wondered what was up with Chico. "Now what makes you think you're not the man you used to be?" Chico showed Della his knee. "Look Della because of this bum leg, I can hardly walk anymore".

Della shook her head sighing then sipped her coffee. " Chico, do you think Suzanne wants to be with you just because of your body?" Della placed her hand upon Chico's chest. "Suzanne wants to be with you because of what's in your heart Chico". Della eyed Chico's slender muscular body. "Besides the rest of your body is pretty good" Della winking looked at Chico's long slender torso again. " Pretty damn good if I do say so myself".

"Stop it Della". Chico said angrily, trying not to smile.

"Chico you should know by now that you and Suzanne have a love that is real. You, Suzanne and Edina have gone through so much lately".

Chico brushed his hair back with his hands starting to feel sorry for himself as he showed pity.

Della placed her hand upon his. "Now with the baby coming you can't give up on life over a sore leg! For crying out loud Chico. It is not worth feeling sorry for yourself when you have friends and family who love you". Chico broke down crying while he sat there as he listened to Della. " I just don't want to be a burden to everyone anymore". Chico wiped his eyes as thought about all his troubles lately.

" Della, I've put Ed through so much misery. When we arrived home I notice how the garage was so much in shambles". Chico rubbed his eyes as he looked at Della. "Chico, I realize that. Ed closed down the garage while you were in the hospital. You mean more to Ed then that old dirty garage". Della sipped her coffee.

" Hon, how is Suzanne taking this?" Della placed her hand on Chico. Lowering his head Chico wiped his eyes." I've been very cranking about this Della. I took it out on Suzanne just before I bailed". Feeling disappointed Della shook her head at Chico. "Chico, in her condition? That's the last thing she needs from you, is you snapping at her".

"I know Della I'm sorry" Ashamed at how he acted Chico leaned forward on the table and covered his eyes.

"Telling me that Chico, isn't going to solve your problem" Della scolded. " I say we go back and you talk to her".

Chico looked up at Della. "Ok" Chico sighed.

Della rose from her seat as she assisted Chico out of his seat. Della grasped Chico's arm helping him as they walked out the door. "Didn't the doctor give a cane Chico?" Della asked as Chico embraced her arm.

Chico lowered his head in shame." Della I have one, I was so angry with myself I threw it against the wall before I left the apartment".

Della just shook her head. "Well hopefully we can work this out for the sake of Edina and her future little sibling".

Chico went to the door of the garage. Della cut in front of him. "Here Chico let me handle this". Della began to pound on the garage door.

Noticing the light turn on Della indicated to Chico as she pointed to the window that Suzanne was on her way.

Suzanne opened the door to find Della there." Hi Della, Come on in I could use some company". Della grasped the door stepped half way in. "Well I can't stay Suzanne but there is someone here who would like to talk to you". Chico scooted over peaking in at the doorway.

"Chico" Crying, Suzanne shook as she witnessed Chico's return

Chico carefully walked in and embraced her. Crying he wouldn't let go. Suzanne looked at Della as she whispered thank you to her. Della happily waved at Suzanne. Noticing that Chico and Suzanne were ok with each other decided to head back to her shop.

Chico embracing her released as he looked at Suzanne. "I'm so sorry Suzanne, please forgive me". Chico said as he tried to keep from getting upset. Together they stood there embracing each other as their tears fell upon one another.

Suzanne released as Chico carefully walked in the garage. Suzanne embraced his arm together they walked into the apartment.

Edina sat on the floor playing with her toys. Edina grasping a toy hammer banged against the toy workbench.

"Edina!" Chico smiled as he carefully bent down to play with her. Grasping a toy wrench Chico pretended he was working along with her.

Chico leaned over as her watched Edina play. "What are building Edina?" Edina smiled looked at her daddy. Box!" Edina said." Box, box, box, box, box!" Edina rose up walking around Chico giving him every little block she could get a hold of".

"Thank you Edina" Chico said as Edina placed each little block upon Chico's stomach.

Looking at the pile of blocks that were piling up upon him. Chico glanced up at Edina. "You have enough blocks here to build a house young lady."

Edina giggled as she went to retrieve more blocks. Chico turned over spilling Edina's pile of blocks on the floor. Grabbing Edina Chico sat her on his stomach.

"You know young lady some day your going to be a big sister to a little boy or a little girl" Chico smiled as Edina slowly started to doze as she sat on Chico's stomach. Grasping Edina Chico gently laid her upon him.

Suzanne came out of the see how Chico was doing as she noticed Edina resting upon Chico. Suzanne looked at Chico as he looked at her. Using his index fingers Chico pointed to Edina that he couldn't move because of her.

Chico motioned Suzanne to come closer to him." This is the first time a female has pinned me down". Suzanne looked at Chico in disbelief. "Chico, I find that hard to believe."

"Ok Suzanne, this time it wasn't against my will" Chico smiled.

Suzanne gently picked up Edina placing her in her crib just as there was a knock on the door. Chico carefully rose up as hobbled over to the door.

"Ed! Come on in". Ed walked in stepping over Edina's blocks. " Chico, I got all your mail together that I found in the box. I already filed my mail away."

Chico shook his head at Ed. "You threw your mail away again didn't you". Glancing at the bundle of letters Chico noticed one from Mando. " A letter from Mando. I hope it isn't an old letter telling me he's angry with me again". Chico sighed as he began to tear open the letter.

Suzanne came in noticing Ed. " Hello Ed" Suzanne embraced him. "What's that Chico? Looks pretty thick?" Chico began to take out the contents of the envelope. "Yeah Suzanne, that's what I was thinking". Opening up the folded pages Chico took in a deep breath and let it out feeling relieved as he sighed.

"What is it? Is it bad news?" Suzanne asked. Chico happily showed her the papers. "Not in the least Suzanne. It's your divorce papers from Mando" Chico showed her the documents. Chico smiled, as Suzanne felt relieved to finally be free again. Yet Chico noticed Suzanne's sudden silence.

"Suzanne are you ok?" Chico embraced her rubbed her back having a feeling he knew what it was about. "Yeah Chico, I just can't believe it's over". Suzanne leaned her head against Chico shoulder.

"Listen Suzanne, I know there was something going on between you and Mando when you were taken away from me". Chico ran his long slender finger through her hair. "I can understand how you're feeling Suz". Chico embraced her as she felt relaxed in Chico's arms. "I'm just so happy your here with me where we belong. Together". Chico embracing her held her tight.

"Chico there was never a day that I didn't love you. I'm just so thankful that Mando has given us the chance to be together again".

Ed decided to leave Chico and Suzanne alone after receiving the news of her divorce papers. Ed shook Chico's hand then hugged Suzanne good bye. As Ed left there apartment several pounding sounds came from the garage door.

Suzanne and Chico looked at each other wondering who that was. "I'll see who it is Chico" Ed yelled as he hurried over to the door. Ed forcefully opened the door finding Mando soaking wet from the rain out side. " Come in, Come in Mando". Ed anxiously said.

"Thanks Ed, it's been raining heavily for a while". Mando said as he messed with his hair drying it off.

Mando knocked on Chico's door. Chico opened it smiling. "Hey Amigo! Come in, come in." Chico looked at Mando drenched from the rain. "You must be soaked to the skin brother". Chico smiled as Suzanne came to greet Mando. "Mando it is good to see you again" Suzanne embraced Mando against his soaked clothes. "Here Mando have a towel to dry off". Mando gratefully took the towel as he dried off. Chico cleaned up the pile of blocks Edina left on the floor.

"Chico I see you been playing with Edina's toys!" Mando kidded.

Mando glanced around as he noticed the papers on the coffee table. "Amigo, you got your papers!"

Sitting down on the couch Suzanne motioned Mando to sit down. Suzanne sat next to Mando. "Yes, Mando, Ed found them in the mail box. Thank you" Suzanne embraced him. " Thank you for everything Mando". Chico sat at the other end of the couch as Suzanne sat between them. "Yeah Mando, Suzanne and I can finally get our life together".

Ed knocked on the door as he found some papers he wanted Chico to look over. " Chico, sorry to bother you I need your signature on a few invoices in the office. I'll go get them for you ok?"

Chico steadily rose up. "No, no Ed I'll there in a minute." Chico turned around just as he left. " I'll be right back".

Mando and Suzanne sat on the couch and caught up with each other. " I see you've pretty much made yourself back home Suzanne". Mando said.

"Yeah, Edina seems to be adjusting well". Suzanne smiled as she looked at Mando.

Smiling Mando waved at Edina. "I'm happy for her, Suzanne. She is a sweet little girl"

Mando casually placed his arm around Suzanne as he began to embrace her. Suzanne felt comfortable yet concerned with Mando's embrace.

"Are you ok Mando?" Suzanne asked.

Sighing Mando looked at Suzanne. "It's just getting hard for me to realize you're not a part of my life anymore ". Suzanne tried to pull back against Mando's embrace. " Mando it was your idea in the first place for the divorce remember?"

"Yeah Suz, I couldn't stand seeing Chico so angry that's why I gave you the divorce" Mando said as he embraced her. Placing her hand on Mando's shoulder Suzanne struggled as she took in Mando feelings for her again. " Mando, I'm a part of Chico's life now".

Mando sighed as he still held her. " I know Suzanne that's what is making it so hard for me".

Mando started to kiss her.

Suzanne released from Mando's kiss not understanding him.

"Hard for you?" Suzanne tried to move away from him as he continued to embrace her. " Mando, please Chico could walk in her any minute". Suzanne tried to fight Mando's affection.

"He was very angry earlier Mando. He is struggling emotionally because of his bad leg. All he needs right now is you making a move on me again". Suzanne began to fear for Chico's presence.

Sighing Mando backed away. Knowing Chico's behavior he began to relax and calm down. "Alright, alright. Listen Suz, I've got to talk to you about your baby you are carrying. Edina's younger sibling could actually be mine you know".

Suzanne kept her eye on the door of their apartment. " Yes Mando I realize that".

Mando shifting his legs crouched over towards Suzanne. "Suzanne if this Child is mine. I want to be apart of his or her life". Suzanne couldn't figure Mando out since he had just granted her the divorce. "Mando..." Suzanne sighed.

"Suzanne, listen. I am really feeling I can help raise the baby if he or she is mine". Mando concerned pleaded with Suzanne. "Mando, if that is so, then why the divorce? If the baby is yours then you're going to want to marry me all over again". Mando embracing Suzanne began to say something just as Chico opened the door. Chico walked in noticing Mando embracing Suzanne

"Sorry it took so long". Chico noticed Mando's behavior towards Suzanne. Chico ignored them as he carefully walked in. "No problem Chico, Suzanne and I were catching up on a few things. Well I better head on out Chico". Mando got up and shook hands with Chico as he waved goodbye to Suzanne and Edina. Chico walked with Mando out the door and seen him out. As Chico watched Mando leave the garage entrance he came back in.

Suzanne was about to get up as Chico stopped her. Sitting down Chico confronted her. "What was that all about?" Suzanne looked at Chico confused. "What was what all about?" Chico tried to control his temper that was rising. "I watched you and Mando embracing together. You didn't ask him to come back to you because of me did you?" Suzanne scared of Chico's anger moved over to the other side of the couch. "No Chico, why are you thinking like this?" Suzanne said.

"Listen Suz, I know how you two were together. I know since the accident things have changed between us". Suzanne confronted Chico before he continued. "Chico, I don't want to talk about this anymore. This is nonsense". Suzanne rose off the couch and walked away. "Then you can't admit it. Can you?" Chico carefully eased himself off the couch with his cane. Suzanne turned around looked directly to Chico. "Can't admit to what Chico?" Using his came Chico slowly struggled to walk over to Suzanne as he grasped her arm. "That you can't get over Mando". Suzanne grasped Chico's arm as she took Chico's cane from her other hand she tossed it over to the couch. "Damn it Chico, I'm tired of your petty jealousy towards Mando". Suzanne continued to grasp his arm as Chico eagerly tried to lean over to reach his cane.

"No you don't Chico" Suzanne pulled him towards her. "What are you doing I need that damn thing to get around". Chico snapped at her. Suzanne followed Chico as he tried to walk over to retrieve it. "Chico I've seen you walk around. You're babying your leg. All you want is sympathy and attention".

Suzanne grabbed Chico's walking stick and tossing it to the other side of the apartment. "All I get from you is anger and hostility".

Suzanne grasped Chico's arms as he tried to walk over to get the cane. Pulling him back towards her. Suzanne said the words Chico needed to hear. " Chico, I've decided to go about having a restraining order against Mando. I'm going to the police station to have a restraining order put against him so we can get on with our lives". Chico, sarcastically laughed." Yeah right Suzanne". Chico began to walk towards his walking cane. Suzanne forcefully pushed Chico against the wall. Grabbing Chico's arm she directed him to her attention. Looking straight into Chico's eyes Suzanne set Chico straight. " Chico, I mean it. My live is with you, Edina and our upcoming baby".

Chico did not take Suzanne seriously as he lowered his head to ignore her. "Chico, why do you have to be so hard headed".

"When the time comes I want to marry you and renew our life together with our daughter Edina Louise and ...our son". Suzanne placed her hand upon his arm to comfort him. Silence filled the air as Chico tried to ignore her. Thinking of what Suzanne said Chico finally registered what he had heard. "Son?" Lifting up his head Chico looked curious.

"We're having a son? A boy?" Chico asked. Suzanne smiled as she wiped her eyes. " Yes. Chico, we are having a son. The sonogram indicates a boy". Chico felt shame come across him as he hugged her. " Suzanne, I am so sorry for being so stubborn"

Chico embraced her kissing her ever so. " Suzanne, I believed you now, when you mentioned your having a restraining order put on Mando" Chico grasped Suzanne's hand as they both walked over to the couch." I guess I was still foggy over this whole situation finally coming to a close with you and Mando." Chico helped Suzanne to the couch as he sat down next to her.

Suzanne leaned back on the couch, as she was feeling uncomfortable from her pregnancy. Passing Suzanne a couple of pillows Chico helped her place them behind her adjust them as she sat still.

"Are you ok Suz?" Chico held her gently rubbing her hand. Suzanne placed her hands upon her belly. " Yeah Chico, He's a kicker". Chico hustled over as he got a wet washcloth wiping her forehead". Suzanne tried to sit up. "As soon as I feel better Chico, let's go to the police station and go about that restraining order".

Chico agreed yet hesitated. " Do you think we should get together with Mando and discuss this before we go about proceedings?"

Suzanne rubbed her belly. "Possibly Chico, yet when he finds out we put a restraining order against him, who knows what he'll do".

Chico embraced her as he leaned towards her, placing his hand over hers on her belly. "I'll do all I can to keep us together Suzanne. I'll make sure Mando doesn't come between us again".

Suzanne began to move around as she tried to get comfortable. Chico noticed how uncomfortable she was.

"Suz, are you sure your alright?" Chico placed his hand on hers and gently stroking her hand with his thumb.

Suzanne grasped her back as she continued to try to get comfortable. "Yeah, I think so Chico". Chico beginning to worry rose up and wanting to call the doctor. "Suz, I'm calling the doctor I don't want to take a chance of you losing the baby!"

Chico grabbed his cane struggling as he walked hurried over to the office. Ed wandered downstairs. "What's the hurry Chico?"

Chico looked back at Ed as he entered the office." Suzanne's not feeling well. I'm calling the doctor to have her come in". Ed concern decided to see Suzanne.

Ed knocked on the door as he quietly opened it. "Hi Suzanne, are you ok?" Ed asked as he sat down on the couch with her. "I seen Chico hurry over to the office"

"I'm just feeling very uncomfortable lately" Suzanne hugged Ed. "Thank you for your concern" Suzanne placed her hand upon his." Chico is beginning to realize now that we are a family again. Now that I have mentioned about having a restraining order against Mando".

Ed did a double take as he heard Suzanne speak. " A restraining order against Mando?" Ed thought about the relationship with the three of them. " I thought you three were hitting it off again".

"Ed, remember when you came in earlier about Chico signing the invoices? Mando and I were alone. Mando did try to make a move on me as he embraced me. Mando kissed me". Suzanne tried to get herself together.

Ed shook his head in disbelief. " Did he try to seduce you again?"

"When I told him that Chico could come in any minute he backed off. He is certain that this baby I'm carrying is his Ed". Suzanne struggled with her discomfort. "Mando said he was willing to help take care of him if that is true".

"Him Suzanne, your having a boy" Ed smiled. "Well I bet Chico is happy to hear that".

"Yet, if Mando is so determined to help raise the baby, why the divorce?" Ed asked.

"That's what I said too Ed," Suzanne rubbing her back. " Ed I'm concerned though about Chico's anger lately. He walked in when Mando and I embraced. That's all that happened, Ed. I swear! Chico thinks I'm still hung up on Mando".

Ed looked directly at her. "Well are you?"

Suzanne looked straight in Ed's eyes. "Yes, yes I am."

Ed scratched his head. "Your still hung up on him. Yet you moved back with Chico..."

"But I'm not in love with him like I thought I was earlier Ed. If I wasn't, I would told Mando and Chico the day Mando told us at the hospital."

Ed, shaking his head, agreed. "That's why you two want the restraining order."

"Yes Ed, I want to go on with my life with Chico and Edina. Mando is a sweet person. I just don't have the same feelings for him like I used too".

"When are you going through with the restraining order?" Ed asked.

"We'll go to the police station after we visit the doctor. I don't think it's anything serious."

Chico came back after calling the doctor. "All set Suzanne. Sorry it took so long. I had to convince them it was an emergency in order to get you in today".

Ed picked Edina. "I'll keep an eye on Edina ok?"

Chico smiled. "Thanks Ed, we shouldn't be too long"

"Take your time, take your time". Ed smiled. "Edina can show me how she play with her work bench!" Ed smiled at Edina.

Chico and Ed helped Suzanne as they headed out the door to the doctor.

Chico and Suzanne arrived at the doctor's office. Chico held Suzanne's hand, as he was worried about Suzanne and the baby.

" I called a short time ago regarding my girls condition" Chico eagerly said to the receptionist.

"Yes, yes, bring her on in the doctor is waiting in room 6". The nurse came in the waiting room as she escorted Suzanne to the examination room.

With the assistance of his cane Chico nervously paced the floor fearing something was wrong. The receptionist watched Chico struggle as he paced back and forth.

"Are you ok sir?" asked the receptionist.

"Yeah, I'm nervous I'm afraid something is wrong with our son" Chico choked up. "I mean the baby Suzanne is carrying"

Chico stopped as he thought of his careless behavior regarding his leg. "Here I've been whining like a baby about my stupid leg and Suzanne could be losing the baby". Chico carefully paced towards the receptionist. " Ma'am, Is there away I can be with her right now". The receptionist cornered a nurse to see if they were done examining Suzanne. " The nurse will be with you in just a minute sir".

Chico patiently waited for the nurse to escort him to her examination room. The door opened up as a nurse came out looking for Chico." Chico Rodriguez?"

Chico turned around looking at the nurse. "Yes, I'm Chico"

"Please follow me" Chico followed the nurse to the examination room where Suzanne was.

Opening the door Chico looked worried as he found Suzanne upset. Chico worried hurried over to her. Placing his arm around her Chico embraced her." Is the baby alright?"

Suzanne raised her head as she looked at Chico. "Chico the babies heartbeats are dropping?"

Worried Chico held Suzanne. "Babies heartbeats?" Chico shook his head tried to let it all sink in.

Chico looked directly at her. "Are saying what I think you're saying?"

"Yes Chico" Suzanne embraced Chico. "They did an ultrasound and we found the other baby. Chico, the doctor said I have to not be around stressful situations right now. Any more stress could cause me to miscarry".

Chico embraced Suzanne worried for her health and the babies. Gently rubbing Suzanne's back Chico became upset." Suzanne, I'm so sorry I've been so selfish lately about myself. All my anger towards you and Mando could have prevented this from happening. My concern now is for your health and the babies". Chico buried his head on Suzanne's shoulder as he cried. "Suzanne please forgive me".

Suzanne felt Chico long locks of hair as she ran her fingers threw them. "Chico, we'll get through this. I know we will".

Chico raised his head as he looked straight into her eyes. " I'll never forgive myself if you end up losing those babies". Chico embraced her as Suzanne held on to him when the doctor came in." Mr. Rodriguez?" The Doctor shook Chico's hand. " Are you the babies' father?" Chico casually sat down on the wheeled step stool next to the Doctor. "Doctor I'm sure of it".

The Doctor looked at Chico concerned as he looked over to Suzanne. " Suzanne, have you had other partners?"

Looking over to Chico, as Suzanne knew Chico and her had to tell the Doctor her relationship regarding Mando.

"Yes, Doctor, I had a relationship with a good friend of Chico's". Suzanne grasped Chico's hand for support.

Chico concerned placed his hand upon hers. " Why Doc? What's wrong, are the babies going to be aright?"

The Doctor sighed as he closed Suzanne's folder." Chico, Suzanne, I'm afraid there's a possibility we will need to do more tests on Suzanne. I will need your blood type for future reference if needed".

"If needed?" Chico concerned worried over Suzanne and the babies.

"This is only a precaution Mr. Rodriguez. Suzanne isn't in serious danger of her pregnancy. I'm just concerned for the baby in the long run. If for any apparent reason the fathers blood work is needed".

"So she'll be ok? And the babies?" Chico asked.

"Yes, Mr. Rodriguez, If she follows my strict orders of not being involved in stressful situations she should be able to carry full term".

Chico relieved embraced Suzanne. "She'll be alright doc. You have my word."

The Doctor concerned placed his hand on Suzanne's. "Suzanne, this other partner you had. Does he know about this pregnancy?"

Suzanne looking at Chico worried how Mando was going to take the restraining order." Yes, Doctor. "Yes Doc. He had mentioned to me if the baby or babies were his he was willing to help raise them".

Chico had no idea of Mando's decision. "What? He said that? Then why did he grant you the divorce?!" Chico's anger started to show as he tried desperately to hide it in front of Suzanne and the Doctor.

"Great! Just great! " Chico rose off the stool and paced in front of the Doctor and Suzanne as the Doctor looked at her.

"Mr. Rodriguez, you'll have to remain calm in front of your girlfriend in order for her to keep her from Stressing".

Suzanne cut in as Chico was about to speak, "We are going to the police station after we see you Doctor. I'm having a restraining order put against Mando to keep him away from us".

Chico leaned against the examination room door. " Do you honestly think that will work Suzanne?"

Suzanne looked at Chico to calm him down. "Anything is possible Chico. Please for the sake of your children Chico have a little faith".

"Well, if the restraining order works out for all of you. I see no harm in that. As long as you follow my strict orders Suzanne. Is that clear?"

Chico and Suzanne agreed with the Doctors orders then left the doctors office preparing themselves for their visit to the police station.


Chico and Suzanne arrived at the police station waiting in the lobby Chico suggested that Suzanne sit down and rest." Suz, why don't you sit down for awhile, I'll take care of this. If they need you, I'll come and get you ok?"

Chico cornered someone about a restraining order for Mando. Filling out the paper work, Chico asked Suzanne to see him. "Suzanne, they need your signature to complete this order." Suzanne rose as she approached the front desk to sign her signature.

Suzanne read the agreement as she got ready to sign the papers. "God Mando, please don't hold a grudge against Chico or me". Suzanne thought as she signed her name. Signing her name on the appropriate line Suzanne was ready to start her life over again with Chico. " Here officer" Suzanne gave the papers to the officer as the officer in return gave her own copy.

Chico and Suzanne headed on back to the garage feeling a sense of reality now that the restraining order was in full swing.

Heading into the garage Chico looked for Ed. " Ed! " Suzanne walked into the apartment.

"Whadda want !" Ed hollered as he was fixing up old tires to use as a swing for a Edina.

"We have just came back from the doctor and the police station".

Ed finished tying up the tires together. "Is Suzanne and the baby ok?" Ed looking concerned placed his hand on Chico's shoulder.

Chico placed his hand upon his Ed's "The Doctor gave us very unexpected news some good some bad". Chico watched Suzanne close the apartment door.

Ed saddened became concerned. "Oh no Chico, is there something wrong with the baby?"

Chico smiled. "No the babies are doing fine. Although she needs to be way from stress for a while"

Ed looked confused " Babies? NO Chico!" Ed stunned looked at Chico." She's having twins?" Ed smiled.

"Yeah, We went to the police station afterwards and filled out the restraining order against Mando". Chico looked around to see if Suzanne was around. " I know for sure Mando isn't going to like that at all"

Picking up Edina Chico was worried again about Mando's behavior." I'm afraid once he finds out, he'll do something outrageous again".

"Well young lady" Chico lifted her up in the air. "I do believe it is time for your nap". Carrying her Chico held her side ways swinging her like a plane.

"I do believe your old man could use one too". Edina waved good bye to Ed as Chico and her left to go into the apartment.

Ed continued to build Edina's tire swing just as Mando walked into the garage. "Hello old folks!" Mando casually walked in spotting Ed.

"Hey have you seen Chico? I have a few things for him". Mando asked as he leaned back against the workbench.

"You just missed him Mando. I'll leave him a message letting him know you were here." Ed asked as he put the tires away in the storeroom.

"No that's ok" Mando hollered over to Ed. "I'll leave Chico a note and put it by his door". Mando looked for a pad of paper and a pen. Finding the pad of paper Mando also stumbled across another piece of paper with his name on it. "What's this?" Mando wondered as he continued to read the paper. Mando realized it was a restraining order against him.

"What the hell is this!" Mando looking at the document closer to him continued to read." A restraining order." Mando, beside himself paced the floor deciding to pound on Chico's door.

"He better be in there!" Mando continued to pound on the door. Shortly there after Chico opened the door wondering what all the commotion was all about.

"I'm coming, I'm coming!" Chico yelled inside the apartment. Opening the door Chico found Mando in front of the door holding the document in front of his face.

"What the hell is this all about Chico!" Mando angrily said.

Chico grabbed Mando's arm pulling him inside his apartment. "Shhhh! Edina and Suzanne are finally asleep!"

Mando fiercely pulled his arm away from Chico. Quietly argued. "Chico! I willingly gave you and Suzanne the divorce so you two can go on with your lives. Then you throw this in my face!"

Chico motioned Mando for him to sit down. "Mando, Suzanne wasn't feeling well this morning. We decided to see the doctor. It was the doctors idea for her to find any way to keep from stressing out".

Mando fidgeted around, as he felt concerned for the baby and Suzanne. " Stressing out? Is the baby ok? Is Suzanne ok?"

Chico leaned over leaning his chin upon his folded hands. "Mando, she's having twins".

Mando shocked, looked at Chico. "You're kidding?"

"No Mando, with our relationship and you being apart of it, now claiming that the babies she's carrying is yours, she became upset and wasn't feeling well".

"We, including the doctor, thought it was best to find any way possible from her losing the babies."

Mando rose up agitated. "So that's why you have the restraining order against me! After I graciously gave Suzanne the divorce?"

Mando paced the floor not believing what he was hearing." Chico, I thought you were more loyal as a friend than that. Especially after what I did for you and Suzanne".

Chico rose up following Mando. " Mando you have to understand we only did it for the sake of Suzanne's health and the babies!"

Mando turned around looking at Chico." In other words Chico, you don't trust me!" Mando shook his head in disbelief

Mando angrily held on to the doorknob. " I thought you knew me better then that". Mando upset tried to keep in his anger. Giving up Mando angrily went up to Chico. " Chico when you least expect it. Expect it. When she has her DNA testing done, if those babies are mine Chico, I will fight till the death for custody of those babies!"

Mando opened the door and hurried out as he slammed the door shut.

Although Chico expected his behavior from Mando, Chico was stunned as he stood by the closed door.

Looking over to Edina. Chico hurried over as he watched her stir around from the noise. "It's ok Edina" Chico adjusted her covers as he thought about what Mando did to her before. "God, I just hope he doesn't do anything drastic like he with you before Edina". Chico leaned down to kiss her forehead.

"What's happening Chico?" Suzanne woke up wondering why Chico seemed upset.

"Don't worry Suzanne, I took care of it. Hopefully for the last time". Chico embraced Suzanne.

Chico lay down beside Suzanne thinking about there future along with the babies' health. Chico turned over as he embraced Suzanne. "I hope we can be together forever Suzanne". Chico whispered.

Suzanne turned over after hearing Chico whisper to her. "Chico, I'll do anything I have to keep us together. Our daughter and the babies will be a family again".

Chico leaned over as he embraced Suzanne. Kissing her he felt relaxed in her arms again.

"Suzanne I want to believe this is finally happening with us". Chico leaned towards Suzanne as he kissed her passionately. Suzanne escaped her troubles as Chico kissed her yet Chico feared for their relationship again as he thought of Mando's outburst regarding his restraining order. Chico released as he whispered good night to Suzanne. Embracing her stomach he whispered good night to the babies.

With the morning approaching Chico woke up early still concerned over Suzanne's health and Mando's remarks from the day before.

Turning over Chico embraced Suzanne hoping life come become normal once the babies arrive. Turning over Suzanne embraced Chico, sensing a feeling of concern from Chico she continued to embrace him. "Chico, I can tell something is troubling you. What's wrong? Did you and Mando have a falling out again?"

Chico sighed as he heard her words regarding Mando. " Suzanne, we need to talk". Chico rose up as he began to tell her about Mando's outburst.

"What happened?" Suzanne rose leaning against Chico's shoulder.

Leaning towards her Chico kissed the top of her head." Suz, I feel you should know about this, Yet I don't want to upset you...."

"Why, what's wrong?..." Suzanne concerned grasped Chico's hand.

"Mando got a hold of the copy of the restraining order against him when he was here". Chico wrapped his arm around her tried to comfort her.

"He pounded on the door when you and Edina went to bed".

"Chico, I bet he was furious!" Suzanne said,

"He was surprised that you were having twins till I mentioned about the doctors visit and your condition. He was more then furious Suzanne, he claimed that if the twins end up to be his he was going to fight till the death for custody." Chico held her afraid of losing her.

"Chico, I don't know what to say?" Suzanne began to get upset.

Chico held her closer to him. "Please Suzanne don't let Mando get to you. That is why I - we - have a restraining order against him".

Suzanne carefully turned over as she got out of bed. "Chico what if he tries to do anything crazy like he did when we got married".

Chico rose up out of bed coming towards her he embraced her. "Suz, I know we just have to be extremely careful between now and the birth of the twins".

Suzanne embraced Chico." Chico, if the twins happen to be Mando's please don't hold it against Mando or me".

Chico listened to Suzanne's remark. Sighing Chico embraced her hoping that the twins were his very own.

Chico rose out of bed and assisted Suzanne up also. "Suz, as soon as the twins are born that will give us enough to get married. I want this wedding of ours to take place secretly so Mando doesn't make a another attempt to disrupt us again".

Suzanne embraced Chico. " That is a good idea".

Chico hugged her as he comforted her. " In fact no one will know except you and I when we decide when that will be. I don't want to put any pressure on Ed and Della".

Suzanne looked up at Chico with tears in her eyes." Chico do you think this will finally happen? I want so badly to be officially Mrs. Chico Rodriguez".

Chico looked at her as he kissed her. "Yes Suzanne, someday we will be together forever no one will hold us back this time".

Part 7

As the birth of twins came fast approaching, Suzanne and Chico also started thinking of their own future together.

Suzanne sat uncomfortable on the couch. Struggling to get comfortable Chico came over with several pillows. " Here hon," Chico began to place pillows behind her helping any way he could regarding her discomfort.

Suzanne smiled as she helped him adjust the bundle of pillows he had for her. "Well Chico, a couple more months and we'll have two precious little boys to care for."

Chico smiled as he hugged her. Edina walked over carrying a pile of books for them to read to her. "Read me a story!" Edina gratefully shoved the books in front of them.

Chico smiled as he graciously accepted the books. Handing them over to Suzanne Chico picked up Edina and sat her on his lap.

Chico, Edina, and Suzanne sat together as Chico read her a story from one of her books. "God made the moon, the stars and the sun that rises above..." Chico read to Edina. Edina smiled looking up to her daddy. Chico began to continue when he heard a thumping sound coming from the side of the building. Stopping to hear it again, Chico wondered where it was coming from. "Huh, I must be imagining it?" Chico said as he concentrated on reading Edina's story to her.

Chico started to read again to Edina as he heard it again. Passing the book to Suzanne he decided to check it out." Edina, mommy is going to finish reading the story while I go look at something.


Chico left the apartment, heading out of the garage. Ed came down stairs and stopped Chico. "What's all that racket out there?" Ed yelled as he hurried down stairs.

"I'm going to find out Ed," Chico yelled over as Ed followed him out the door.

Chico and Ed looked around finding nothing till a rock hit their side of the building. "There it is!" Chico held Ed back. "Who ever is doing it is over there!" Chico pointed to the direction.

"Ah it's probably some young punk kid wanting to start trouble" Ed grumbled as he raised up to look.

Chico looked around as the figure from a distance moved around. "I'm going to go catch him Ed."

Ed held him back." Now wait a minute Chico, I don't any more trouble."

Chico let go of him. "Don't worry Ed, I'll take care of it." Chico quietly hurried over carefully to the person throwing the rocks.

Chico carefully came closer to the person responsible. Coming from behind Chico leaped on him collapsing him to the ground. "Gotcha!" Chico yelled.

"Get off me!" yelled Mando.

"Mando?" Chico rolled over still pinning him to the ground.

"Yeah it's me. How else am I supposed to see you or Suzanne with that damn restraining order you have against me?"

Suzanne came out as she witnessed seeing Mando and Chico wrestling on the ground. Ed came out after noticing Suzanne was outside wondering what happened.

"Suzanne you shouldn't be out here this late at night in your condition," Ed tried to pull Suzanne away.

Suzanne looked at Mando and Chico, reliving the moment that Mando wanted to try to shoot him. Scared she was going to relive it again Suzanne screamed, "Chico, be careful he might have a weapon!"

Looking directly at Mando Chico backed away fearing her statement.

"I don't have nothing like that with me!" Mando said. "Honest! I just want to talk to you! You alone, Suzanne!" Mando said.

Suzanne looked at Mando fearing what he wanted to talk to her about.

Feeling ill as Suzanne bent over. Ed leaned over towards her concerned about her condition. "Suzanne are you ok?"

Suzanne began to cry. " Oh God Ed, I think there is something wrong with the babies."

"I'm taking you to the doctor Suzanne, right now!" Ed embraced her as he lead her to there truck.

Chico looked over to Suzanne and Ed wondering what was wrong with her. " Oh God no the twins!"

"What? " Mando said.

"Suzanne looks like she's in pain!" Chico rolled over rising off the ground. Angrily Chico headed over towards her. "I'll never forgive myself if she loses the twins."

Chico hurried over to the Tow truck as Mando followed him. "What's wrong Suzanne? Please not the twins!"

Suzanne looked at Chico and Mando, disappointed she might lose the babies. Ed hopped in the truck and started to back out.

Suzanne leaned back in pain as she held her stomach. " God, please protect my babies!"

Ed rushed over to the hospital emergency room entrance parking lot.

Shortly after Chico and Mando arrived in Mando's car. Chico, in tears, sat in the car as Mando hustled out. Looking back Mando went over to Chico window knocking. " Come on Chico, come on." Chico looked up, upset at what was happening with Suzanne and the twins.

Mando trying to open Chico's door noticed it was locked. " What's up Chico? Can't you see she needs a doctor right away?"

Chico, in tears, lowered covering his head. "Mando, don't you get it she is going to lose the twins!" he yelled through the closed window.

Mando grasped the roof of the car as he leaned towards Chico's window. "Yes Chico, I realize that, we need to be with her." Mando upset turned around leaning against the car. "God, why does it have to be like this?" Mando looked up and pleaded to God. "Please help Suzanne, and her twins get through this pregnancy." Wiping his eyes he lowered his head hoping for a miracle. "She's so close to her delivery please let nothing happen to her or the babies now."

Mando fussed with the door again realizing Chico had just unlocked it. "Come on Chico, we need to be with Suzanne. For her sake and the babies."

Chico got out of the car scared for Suzanne's condition. Turning back Chico walked towards the car.

"Mando I'm afraid if she sees me she'll put the blame on me, if she loses the babies." Chico covered his eyes in shame.

Mando grasped Chico's shoulders turning him around facing him. " Damn it Chico, get a grip on yourself"

Chico looked at Mando lowering his head. "What if something happens to the babies? What if something ...happens to Suzanne?"

Mando looked up at Chico. "Chico I am just as worried about Suzanne and the twins as you are. Now come on, let's go find Ed and the doctor"

Chico put his arm over Mando's shoulder as the both of them made there way in the emergency room.

Chico and Mando walked in looking for Ed. Ed was spotted over by the admissions desk. Rushing over Chico and Mando cornered Ed.

"Where's Suzanne?" Chico asked as Mando looked around for any sign of her.

Ed, saddened, turned around towards Chico and Mando. "She in the examination room. The checking her and the babies right now."

Mando leaned on the desk placing his head upon his hands. Rising his head he silently prayed for Suzanne and the twins. Chico concerned placed his hand on Mando's shoulder.

"Chico, we need to settle our differences for the sake of Suzanne and the twins." Mando spoke to Chico as a doctor came out looking for Ed.

"Mr. Brown?" Looking around the doctor noticed Ed as he approached him. "Yes, Doctor?"

"Mr. Brown I understand you helped admit Suzanne although I need to speak to the father of the twins Suzanne is carrying."

Hearing the doctor's remark Chico and Mando walked closer to the doctor. "What's wrong?" Chico asked." "Are the twins ok?" Mando asked.

The doctor approached Chico and Mando. "Which one of you two is the father of the twins Suzanne is carrying?'

Chico and Mando looked at each other. Chico silent didn't know what to say. Mando confronted the doctor. "Doc, Suzanne was involved with both of us, one time or another."

The doctor looked at Mando and Chico" In other words she has no idea who the father is"

"What's wrong Doctor? Is she going to lose the twins...." Chico began to get upset.

"Chico, Mando, she is going through premature labor. With the stress of her condition and the babies health she is going into labor as we speak."

"She's having the babies?" Mando asked.

"Yes, that is why I asked who the father was. The twins, if they survive through the delivery, will possibly need a blood transfusion."

Chico concerned looked at the doctor. "If? What do you mean doc? They have to survive!" Chico nervously paced the floor.

"Can I, we see her Doctor?" Mando asked.

"She is being prepped for Surgery right now. The surgeons will be performing a c-section to remove the babies."

"Chico, Mando it's best to wait here till after the surgery is done. I will be in touch with you as soon as possible after the surgery is completed." A nurse came over to corner the doctor. "Doctor, the patient is prepped and ready for surgery."

The Doctor nodded to the nurse as he began heading back to the operating room.

Chico began to pace the floor. " God, please don't take the babies and Suzanne away from me again."

Mando paced the floor kiddy corner from him. Sighing he leaned against the wall near the surgery area. " God, I can't bear to see her or the twins die."

Chico walked over to Mando after hearing Mando's plea. "What? I was with her when she died in the ambulance that morning of the shooting. You have no idea what I went through to see her die." Chico choked up with emotion lifted his head to keep from getting upset. "I thank God, to be able to be there when the paramedics recovered her."

Mando looked up to Chico. "Don't think I didn't give a damn about Suzanne after she got shot Chico. After the ambulance left, the cops handcuffed me and had me arrested!"

Mando shook his head in disgust of what had happened. "There was nothing I could do after the gun was taken away with my finger prints all over it."

Chico sighed as he relived the morning of the shooting. "I admit Mando our arguing over her was foolish but I didn't think you would of have gone so far as to try to scare me with that damn gun!"

"Mando seeing her in that ambulance dying was to much to bear. I couldn't believe it when they were able to revive her."

"She gets a new lease on life for what? More hell to go through with us! She's too sweet of a girl to put up with us like this," Mando said.

Patiently waiting Mando and Chico walked over to the waiting area, as the surgeon and nurses came out.

Sitting down next to Chico and Mando the surgeon began to tell the news about the twins. Chico as well as Mando both looked at the surgeon as he removed his cap.

"Chico, Mando, I'm afraid I have some bad news regarding the twins..."

Chico's long slender fingers fearfully covered his eyes as the doctor began to explain what was happening. Mando stood up fearing what bad news he was going to bare to both Chico and him.

"I'm afraid that the babies heart rates are dropping. They are in ICU right now. Although they is no grave danger as of yet. I must warn you that since they are premature, there will be a long recovery period till they are healthy enough to come home."

Mando sat across from Chico and the doctor. "How long are we talking Doc?"

"Mando this could be any where from several weeks to several months depending how well they take the IV of nutrients and other fluids and how much weight that they will gain."

Chico leaned over towards the doctor. " Doc, I have to ask. Will our sons survive this?"

Rising up the doctor gave them the news Chico and Mando never expected. "Chico, Mando, if all prayers are answered, your son and daughter will be fine after a long stay till they regain their strength."

"Son and daughter?" Chico and Mando looked at each other.

"Yes you Chico or Mando are the proud parents of twins. A boy and a girl."

Chico and Mando rose up both thanking the doctor for the news of Suzanne's condition and for the babies.

Chico took hold of the physician's arm. "Doc, can we see her?"

Flipping through his chart the doctor made his decision. "Yes, but make it brief she's still groggy from the medication. Also before you leave I want the both of you to see the lab technician regarding a blood and DNA sample so we can go ahead on any further treatment if necessary."

Mando and Chico agreed to go ahead with the Lab tests then go see Suzanne so she could continue resting.

A few hours went by as Mando and Chico finished up their blood work and other tests. "I feel like a pin cushion Man" Chico rubbed his arm as well as Mando after all there poking they had to endure.

Mando rubbed his arm. "Man, I hope I don't ever have to go through this again." Mando and Chico headed up to Suzanne's room.

Suzanne woke up sore from her surgery. Realizing Ed was with her, she embraced his hand. "Ed thanks for being here for me."

Ed smiled as he grasped her hand. " Suz, never is a day I don't think of you and your daughter." Ed leaned forward towards Suzanne. "Chico and Mando are at the lab having test done Suz."

Smiling ever so Ed gave her the news. " Now that you are the proud mother of a baby boy and girl!"

Suzanne shocked tried to rise up. " Hey, hey, Suzanne, lay down your not supposed to move around you know"

" But Ed. A baby boy and a girl?" Suzanne tried to let it all sink in. Smiling she thought of the twins. "I could of sworn the doctor and I seen two boys."

"Yes, Suzanne, God has a way of making decisions doesn't he?" Ed smiled embraced her hand.

A knock came upon Suzanne's door. Chico and Mando walked in carrying flowers. " Hello Mommy!" Chico smiled as he kissed her. Placing the bouquet on the table Mando greeted her also. "Hello Suzanne, congratulations on becoming a mother again. You've been doubly blessed!" Mando leaned over kissing Suzanne on the cheek.

The nurse came in to check in Suzanne. "Excuse me ma'am. Is there a chance we can see the babies?"

The nurse looked at Suzanne's chart. "Hmm, father currently unknown? I'll have to check."

Chico confronted the nurse." Please we are the fathers awaiting to be confirmed."

Sighing as she looked over the chart she led them to the ICU ward where they were staying.

Chico and Mando followed the nurse as she wheeled Suzanne along towards pediatrics.

Suzanne was wheeled while Mando and Chico followed her from behind. Chico and Mando nervously looked around for their babies.

"Here we are. They're resting quietly." Suzanne Mando and Chico gathered around the twins incubators as they witnessed their arrival.

"There so tiny?" Chico, Suzanne, and Mando each looked at the babies small hands and feet.

Suddenly a warning came on on the incubators indicating trouble with the twins. "What's going on?" Suzanne worried started to cry. Chico and Mando worriedly looked around as several nurses rushed over to the twins.

"Please gentlemen, you'll have to leave." Suzanne, frightened, tried to rise up from after her surgery wanting to get a closer look at her babies. "Ma'am please, we need to take care of the twins." Chico, Mando and Suzanne were escorted out of the pediatrics area and into the waiting room.

Suzanne became hysterical as she felt she was going to lose the twins. Rushing to her aid Chico and Mando tried to comfort Suzanne. Both embracing Suzanne they calmed her down. " I'll take you back to your room, ma'am."

Suzanne looked at the nurse. "No, I want to be with my son and daughter!"

The nurse wheeled Suzanne away as requested by the physician. " I'm sorry we have to take care of the twins they are in need of medical attention."

Suzanne buried her head in her hands as she cried, "Please let me be with my babies." Mando and Chico followed her.

Going back to her room, Ed noticed Suzanne upset as she was wheeled in. Chico and Mando hurried in.

"What happen? Are the twins ok?" Suzanne began to hyperventilate. "Ed, there is something wrong with the twins. I don't know what's wrong. They took us away when the problem arose."

Ed leaned down as he looked at Suzanne." I'm sure the doctors and nurses are doing all that they can as a precaution."

"Everything should be fine Suzanne. I'm sure if they were in any grave danger they would of let you know." Ed said as he motioned Chico and Mando to come as he embraced her.

"Think of the twins Suzanne" Chico said. " Now we are going to have to think of a girls name" Chico smiled.

"Everything will be ok Suz." Mando rubbed her hand to comfort her.

"What name shall we have for her Suzanne?" Chico asked.

Suzanne thought it over seeing that they had already picked names for the boys. "Well I would like to keep Francisco for the boys name. I'd like to name our daughter to after you also, Chico."

"Me? You want to name her after me?" Smiling Chico looked at her as Mando began to feel slightly left out.

"What name will that be for her Suzanne?" Chico asked.

"Francine?" Chico questioned started to smile.


Suzanne smiled as she embraced Chico releasing what she said. She looked at Mando. "Mando I know for sure that these twins are ours. I just have a gut feeling that Chico is the father."

Mando embraced her placing his forehead upon her. "Suzanne how can you be so sure? What are you going to do if they happen to be a part of me?" Mando concerned, remembered telling Suzanne that he had a gut feeling that Edina was his. Feeling let down he remembered when Suzanne told him that Edina was not his but Chico's daughter.

Mando moved out of the way of Suzanne as he felt the disappointment sink in. Quietly walking out of Suzanne's room he wandered around the visitors area.

Chico and Ed fussed with Suzanne as she got herself settled back in bed. Noticing Mando was gone Suzanne wondered what happened to him.

"Here my dear let me help get comfortable." Chico fluffed up her pillows as he threw the sheets over to her. " Mando pass me that other pillow in the chair over there... Mando?" Chico turned around wondering where he went.

"Huh, I wonder what happen to him?" Chico curious continued to fuss with Suzanne along with Ed.

"I didn't even know he left Chico, he never said good bye?" Suzanne concerned was worried over Mando.

"I'm gonna go find out where he went Ok Suz?" Chico hugged her then left to go find Mando.

Ed sat next to Suzanne along next to her. Della came in with Edina. "Well, Suzanne congratulations. I hear you have twins, a boy and a girl."

Suzanne smiled as she embraced Della and Edina. "Yeah, although I hope nothing goes wrong with them."

Della placed her hand on hers." Suzanne I heard that they are in ICU. That is normal for preemies though."

Chico looked all over for Mando finally spotting him in the visitor's waiting room. "Hey Mando what gives?"

Mando slumped down on the chair looked up at Chico disappointed. " What do you mean, what gives?"

Chico grabbed a chair moved it over to Mando. "Why did you leave without saying goodbye?"

Mando sat up looking at Chico. "Chico I'm sorry." Mando fussed with his chair." Just seeing the babies then Suzanne naming the boy after you then indicating that she has a gut feeling that there your children. I had a disappointing feeling come over me." Mando saddened felt left out. "I felt rejected Chico."

Chico concerned leaned over towards Mando." I'm sure Suzanne didn't mean it. I imagine the excitement of the twins' condition, the drugs that they gave her for her pain. Suzanne wasn't thinking straight."

Chico rose up, motioning Mando to follow him back. "I'm sure she feels bad about it. She was worried about you when you left."

Della and Edina left out of the room as Chico and Mando headed back. Suzanne looked over to Chico and Mando as they entered back in her room. "I'm so sorry Mando, I didn't know what I was thinking. I agree that there is a good chance the twins could be yours."

Mando leaned over to hug her, as did Chico. Embracing one another the doctor came in with a file.

"Gentlemen, I'm glad the two of you are here. I have the results of the paternity test." The doctor sat down on one of the chairs as Mando, Suzanne, and Chico looked at each other.

Chico sat on the bed next to Suzanne, embracing her hand in hope of being the father. Mando grabbed the neighboring chair.

Removing the contents of the test results, Chico and Mando as well as Suzanne became nervous.

Mando reached out his hand towards Suzanne's, gently embracing hers.

Removing the contents of the folder. The doctor looked over the results as he skimmed through all the data recorded in the file.

Closing the file the doctor began to speak. "According to the test results the twins DNA and the fathers DNA are accurate."

Chico and Mando concentrated as they leaned forward anxiously waiting for the results.

"Suzanne the father of the twins is..." Noticing the sound of his beeper. Looking at his beeper finding a number he feared to see the doctor rose up quickly. Dialing the number he received he waited then quickly hung up." I apologize I have to go, there is a change in the twins vitals!"

Looking at Suzanne, Chico and Mando the doctor left in a hurry to the Pediatric Ward.

Suzanne collapsed her head in her hands, as she feared she was going to lose Francisco and Francine.

Wiping her eyes Suzanne looked at both Mando and Chico. "I'm afraid I'm going to lose my babies" Suzanne cried as she spoke gently rocking.

Chico and Mando looked at each other as they gently embraced her. "Suz, don't be so sure."

Mando embraced Suzanne. Becoming upset Chico let go of her. Suzanne reached over as she held Chico's hand. Resting her head upon Mando's chest Suzanne continued to cry. "Suzanne, God has reasons why things in life just don't go as planned." Mando gently ran his hand through her hair. "I'm sure there is a reason for all of this."

Chico got up and embraced her as the doctor came back in the room from his call. "Mr. Rodriguez, may I speak with Suzanne and Mando alone?"

Stunned Chico looked at Suzanne and Mando. Realizing what was happening, Chico lowered his head feeling disappointed then left Suzanne's room without looking back.

Shaking his head in disbelief Chico leaned against the door of Suzanne's room. "I just can't believe it? How could she?"

Chico tried to make sense of everything just as he heard Suzanne cry. "Oh God no, not my babies!" Chico looked in the room seeing Mando upset lean on the bed table covering his eyes. Wiping his eyes Mando then went to go comfort Suzanne. Chico placed his hand on the door wanting so badly to come in and comfort Suzanne. Chico knew he had to back off decided to go pace the hallway. Waiting for the doctor drove Chico crazy as he began to walk back towards Suzanne's room. Chico turned around finding the door open. Jogging over to the doctor as he left her room the doctor motioned Chico to a waiting room nearby.

"Doc, what's wrong?"

Taking his glasses off, the doctor shook his head. "I'm sorry Mr. Rodriguez, I am not authorized to discuss the babies condition to a third party."

Chico concerned looked at the doctor. "Third party?" Chico rose up standing in front of the doctor. "Oh, so now that I'm not the father, you can't discuss it with me anymore!"

The doctor looked up at Chico as he rose up off the chair. " I'm sorry Mr. Rodriguez, when Suzanne and Mando are up to it, they will inform you of their babies conditions."

Chico disappointed couldn't believe that now Francisco and Francine were not his very own. Chico sat there in his chair in a state of shock as he tried so desperately to accept Mando as their very own father.

Nurses came in checking on Suzanne as Mando walked out of the room trying to make sense of all that happened. Walking down the corridor, Mando was approached by Chico.

"Hey!" Mando turned around spotting Chico. Mando, too upset, looked at Chico. "What is it Chico" Mando said sadly.

Chico shoved Mando near the wall. "I had a feeling Mando, but never thought I'd live to see the day that you would get my girl pregnant."

"Chico please! Not now." Mando covered his head as he hid near a pay phone. "Chico, there's something you should now before you continue..." Mando looked up to Chico. Breathing heavily Mando began to tell Chico the news regarding the twins.

"Chico, what the doctor told Suzanne and I after he asked you to leave was that..." Mando began to chock up with emotion.

"Francine was in a fragile state." Mando wiped his eyes trying to keep a grip of himself.

Chico concerned questioned Mando. "What do you mean was? You're not saying?" Chico shook his head couldn't believe it.

Mando embraced Chico's arm. "Chico, Francine passed away shortly after the doctor received his page to leave"

"I can't believe it? Oh God after all Suzanne's been through and to lose one of the twins. How is Francisco?" Chico sighed couldn't believe it. "Is he in any danger also?"

"The doctors are monitoring Francisco's progress Chico, there is a chance he may survive."

Chico embraced Mando " God Mando, I'm so sorry. I better leave you two alone."

Mando tugged on him. " No, no Chico please come and be with us, Suzanne I'm sure she'll will want some family and friends with her during her time of grief."

Chico and Mando walked back to Suzanne's room. Suzanne was in tears as she lay in bed. Mando and Chico walked towards Suzanne's side of the bed.

Placing his hand upon hers Chico began to cry." I'm so sorry Suzanne." Chico continued to cry as he lightly embraced her. "I've put you through so much hell now to have you go through this.... This is all my fault."

Chico backed away as he became emotional as he rested his hands on the bed railing. "Losing Francine is like losing a part of you also Suzanne." Chico whispered.

Chico was too emotional to talk as he sadly left the room. Walking aimlessly down the corridor he bumped into Ed. " Ed!" Chico collapsed in Ed's arms as he wept from losing Francine. " Ed not only did I find out that Francine and Francisco are not my children.... But Suzanne and Mando received word that Francine passed away."

Ed, saddened from hearing the news, embraced Chico. " Ed it's all my fault! If I hadn't been so hard headed none of this never would have happened!"

Ed released from Chico." Now wait a minute Chico. You were not at fault regarding Francine's death. You realized Suzanne had a premature labor. Francine just wasn't ready to face her world. God has given her new life in his arms right now Chico."

"Chico, Suzanne has a son a little brother for Edina." Ed tried to explain to Chico. "Regardless of who the father is to Francisco, Edina is a part of his life now." Ed embraced Chico. "Please don't feel left out."

Chico thought about what Mando said about Chico and her raising the baby if it was his. " Mando did say he didn't think he would have time to be able to raise him or her."

Ed and Chico walked over to see if Suzanne and Mando were ok in their room. Opening the door Ed looked inside. Noticing that Suzanne and Mando were silent, Ed quietly walked in the room.

Suzanne turned over to see Ed walk in to greet her. Crying, Suzanne tried to raise herself up to embrace Ed.

"Suzanne I am so sorry to hear about Francine. You are in my prayers." Ed released and embraced Mando.

"I was just talking to Chico earlier. He told me everything." Ed saddened, held on to the bed railing.

Looking at Mando he decided to ask about Francisco's living arrangements. "Please forgive me for what I am about to ask Mando."

Mando sadly looked at Ed. "Yes?"

"Chico had mentioned about you indicating that you were going to let Chico and Suzanne assume the responsibility of raising the baby even if he or she was yours."

Mando nodded his head in agreement. "Yes, I remember."

"Well seeing that the children or in this case the child Francisco is born are you still willing to give up paternal rights even though he is your own flesh and blood?"

Mando pleaded with Ed. "Ed I understand what you are saying. Please, now is not the time to discuss this"

Chico walked over to Suzanne holding her hand. He was lost for words. "Suzanne what ever you decide regarding Francisco, I'll understand." Tears rolling down his cheeks Chico pleaded with her silently. "I'll do anything to help raise your son if you are still willing to stay with me."

Part 8

Suzanne, Chico and Mando were getting ready to go home after her release from the hospital. Still struggling over her loss of her daughter Francine, Suzanne sat on the edge of the bed began to cry.

Rocking ever so, Suzanne worried over her possible loss of Francisco also. "My baby Francine." Suzanne covered her eyes as she relived the news from the doctor telling her and Mando their baby girl Francine passed away.

Suzanne rose up still sore from the c-section they did on her. Fearing her loss of Francisco Suzanne struggled to move around as she made an attempt to go see Francisco.

Chico spotted her moving towards the door of her room. Grasping her arm Chico stopped her. "Where are you going Suzanne?"

Concerned, Chico motioned Mando over towards them. "Chico, I have to go see my son. I'm afraid I'm going to lose him too." Suzanne, upset, leaned her head on Chico's chest. Realizing her sadness, Chico embraced her.

"Suz, the doctors are doing all that they can for Francisco". Mando rested his hand on her shoulder comforting her. Suzanne embraced Chico and Mando together.

"Please I have to see my son!" Suzanne pushed herself away from Chico and Mando. Mando looked out the hallway spotting a wheel chair. "I'll be right back Suz".

Suzanne embraced Chico as he comforted her. Knowing how much he badly wanted her in his life he had to realize if their relationship was possibly over.

Wheeling the chair in the room Mando and Chico helped Suzanne sit down. "Here Suz, I mentioned to the nurses where you were going in case they thought you went a.w.o.l on them".

Mando wheeled Suzanne towards the pediatric area in ICU. Chico watched Mando as he carefully wheeled her in.

Approaching the infants, Chico backed off stopping towards the window. As Mando and Suzanne came in looking for Francisco. Looking around Suzanne began to panic. "Where's Francisco?"

A nurse came over towards Suzanne and put her arm around her. "Francisco is in surgery. He is experiencing difficult breathing. They are performing a routine procedure there is no danger Suzanne". Embracing Suzanne the nurse comforted her regarding her loss of Francine.

Looking towards Mando the nurse spoke to Suzanne. "Ma'am, you and your husband are in our prayers".

Suzanne looked up to the nurse. "Thank you miss, but I'm no longer married to the man whom I know now is the baby's father." The nurse felt sympathy for Suzanne and embraced her. Suzanne began to cry.

Shaking from the emotion that overcame her Suzanne wondered what to make of her future, her daughter Edina and now her son Francisco.

Mando approached her as he knelt down beside her. Embracing her hand, Mando tried to comfort her. "I talked to the nurse about the surgery. Francisco will be fine." Mando held her knowing there was really a rough road ahead for them regarding their baby boy.

Suzanne looked over finding Chico leaned against the glass window sobbing as he witness what he thought was his son and now his best friend involved with his girl.

" Mando, we need to talk ... About us and the future of our son". Suzanne looked into Mando's eyes fearing how he was going to react to her next comment. "Mando I want Chico to be apart of this conversation with us". Suzanne became emotional as she looked at Chico near the window.

"Ok, ok Suzanne I'll inform Chico that you want us all together. First we should get back to your room and head on out to discharge you".

Suzanne was wheeled over to the incubator where Francisco was held. Gently brushing the top Suzanne prayed Francisco would hopefully pull through this. "Francisco, please for Chico's....your father's sake please pull through this." Sighing Suzanne motioned Mando to escort her back to her room.

Mando wheeled Suzanne out towards the hallway when she stopped him. Spotting Chico she called him over.

"Chico, I didn't see you inside the room" Suzanne gently brushed her hand upon his. Chico looked at her with tear stained eyes. Trying so hard to keep from getting upset, he bent down towards her. " Suzanne I'm about to get ready to go. I'm not needed here anymore." Chico closed his eyes as he desperately tried not to cry in front of her.

Suzanne looked at Chico embracing her hand upon his sideburns she felt his warm embrace. "Please, before you leave I would like you to get together with Mando and I." Suzanne released her hand from his side and placed it upon his own hand. " There's something I would like to discuss with you as well with Mando."

Chico sighed as he remembered Suzanne's scent yet wondered what could she want with both Mando and him.

Chico rose as he followed along with Mando and Suzanne up to her room. "What could she want with the both of us?" Chico curiously looked at Suzanne and at Mando. Leaning over to Mando he asked him if he had any clue.

"Mando, what does Suzanne want with the both of us together?" Chico whispered as he followed Mando to there room. Looking back at Chico Mando nudged his head indicating his having no idea of it either.

Chico and Mando entered Suzanne's room, sitting down they both were at her side. Embracing their hands Suzanne sat up preparing herself for what she wanted to tell them. Looking at each of them she got her composer. "Chico, Mando, I believe what I have I planned for Francisco is for the best of his up bringing as well for his daughter Edina."

Chico sighed wondering what she had planned.

Mando feared his chance to show Suzanne he was willing to raise Francisco was over.

Suzanne began to get upset as she reflected on the memories that Chico as well as Mando have given her. "I've spoken to Ed about this when you two were having your DNA tests done. Although he regretfully disagrees with my decision he understands my concern as well".

Mando leaned towards her grasping a hold of her hand. Sadly looking towards her feared he was going to lose her as well as Francisco.

Chico on the other hand embraced her knowing his life with her was over. Looking away he tried to keep from getting upset.

Suzanne looked at both Mando and Chico as they both tried physically to make one last plea to her.

"This is going to be very hard for me as well as for Edina who's grown very fond of you both as well as Ed."

Suzanne gently touched both Mando and Chico's cheek as she gave them her news. "I've decided to move back home with my family and raise my children alone".

Chico was speechless as Mando looked at her in disbelief. " What?" they both said.

"You can't be serious!" Chico couldn't believe it.

"You're just going to up and leave me? Us?" Mando pointed to himself as well as Ed and Chico. " After all we've been through together?" Mando pleaded"

"You two have to understand how much you two mean so much to me". Suzanne eyes began to swell up.

"If I end up with Chico, then I'll be lost without Mando. If I'm with Mando then I'll be lost without Chico."

"It is going to be hard to raise two children with two different fathers." Suzanne wiped her eyes.

Mando looked at her as he remembered when they first met. " Suz, I realize that I still care for you and I know how you are feel for me as well".

Ed saddened wiped his eyes as he held on to Edina.

Mando walked back and around her bed. "I also know how you feel about Chico also." Walking up to Chico and Suzanne Mando placed his hand upon hers and Chico's.

"Please. Don't leave. Be with ....." Mando regretfully pleaded." .....Chico". Mando embraced her as Chico looked on.

"I'm sure with you two raising Edina as well as Francisco, I'll still get to see him". Mando sat next to Suzanne as he moved a chair over. "No children should be raised without both of their parents. Sooner or later Suz, Francisco will be asking about his father if you take him far away from him"

Chico walked over towards Suzanne and Mando. "I had no idea you felt this way Suzanne. Please think this over." Embracing Suzanne Chico kissed her cheek. " I will understand what ever decision you make regarding who will best fit to help raise your children".

Hearing that from Chico only made things worst for Suzanne as she tried desperately to make a permanent decision.

"Can't you see that's the problem! I love you both. Each of you have given me such beautiful children". Suzanne leaned her head upon her hand. "I have to do what's best for my children and this is making it very difficult for me to decide".

Suzanne looked at Ed. "Ed may I speak with you alone?"

Ed walked towards her as she embraced his hand. "Chico, Mando we'll just be a few minutes. If you don't mind"

Chico and Mando agreed as they quietly walked out of her room.

"What can I do for you Suzanne?" Ed asked as he leaned on Suzanne's bed.

"Ed I just don't know what to do?" Suzanne shook her head in concern. " I have two kids from two loving and caring fathers". Wiping her eyes she lifted her head. "If I make a decision to be with one the other one will feel left out and God only knows what he will do?"

Ed held her hand as he thought it over. "What do we suggest you do?"

Suzanne looked at Ed and began to get upset. " Ed as much as I love you, Chico and Mando.... I have no choice but to take my children back home with me".

Ed sighed, as he feared her decision. "I'm afraid if you plan on leaving with your children Suzanne. God only knows what kind of legal action will take place against you"

Suzanne looked at Ed. "Legal action? Are you planning on taking me to court?"

Ed looked at her. "Suz, if it ever came down to taking the kids away from there fathers. I know Chico as well as Mando would try any legal action to keep you from leaving with them"

A knock came upon Suzanne's door. "Ed that's Mando and Chico". Suzanne looked over seeing Mando by the window of the door".

Suzanne looked at Ed. "Please don't say anything to them please. I promise I won't do anything stupid without you or them knowing about it".

Suzanne looked back at the window of the door. Motioning them to come in Mando and Chico walked into her room.

"Thank you for letting me have some time alone with Ed". Ed rose off the bed as he was getting Suzanne's stuff to take home with her. " Well mommy, let's get ready to go home".

Chico, Suzanne and Mando finished packing Suzanne's stuff as Ed looked around for the doctor to release her.

Finding the doctor Ed opened the door as a wheelchair led the doctor's way inside. "Well Suzanne you're free to go home. I have taken the liberty of you having visit your son before you leave today". As the doctor flipped threw Suzanne's chart. The doctor cornered her about Reverend Bemis.

"Ah Reverend Bemis is looking for you. He is aware of your discharge Suzanne. He is seated in the visitors lobby.

Ed Wheeled Suzanne out as Chico and Mando followed them towards the visitors lounge. Spotting Suzanne Reverend Bemis rose out of his seat. Leaning down towards Suzanne Reverend Bemis greeted her.

"Suzanne, you have my sympathy. Little Francine is in heaven resting with the father". Reverend Bemis rose up as Suzanne began to cry. Motioning Reverend Bemis to come over Chico and Mando discussed arrangements for the service.

Ed embracing Suzanne tried to comfort her as Chico and Mando continued to make arrangements.

Chico and Mando discussed what was best for Francine's burial. Suzanne sat in her chair as she tried to accept Francine's passing.

Noticing her sadness Reverend Bemis approached her." Suzanne, my child, God has taken care of your daughter Francine. She is not alone".

Suzanne comforted by Reverend Bemiss words found Chico ready to take her home as Mando and Ed helped with the car.

Chico wheeled Suzanne out of the hospital as Ed and Mando pulled up getting her in the car.

Chico and Mando helped Suzanne up out of the chair as Suzanne turned around and looked back towards the hospital. Tears rolled down her eyes as she thought of her baby daughter dying and now Francisco clinging to life. "I have to go back in there, Francisco needs me". Suzanne cried as she held on to Chico. Mando feeling her sadness along with her embraced her. " Suzy, the doctors are doing all that they can right now".

"But my baby needs me". Suzanne cried. Mando embraced her knowing how badly she wanted to be with their son. "Suzanne the doctors are doing the best that they can to take care of our baby".

Chico embraced her as he listened to Mandos words. Words he had hoped to have been able to say to her for her.

Chico huddled to both Suzanne and Mando. "I am so sorry to have two suffer so much for such a little child."

Embracing Suzanne and Mando, Chico made up his mind regarding their relationship. "Suzanne I'll help you pack your belongings so you can move back to Mandos apartment".

Suzanne confused looked back at Chico. "What?" Suzanne looked at Mando as well as Chico. "Chico I have thought about this situation as I spoke with Ed". Sighing, Suzanne decided on another alternative she had heard from the hospital.

"Chico, Mando I have decided not to stay here, yet I have to think about my childrens future as well as mine".

Mando and Chico looked at each other wondering what she had in mind. "What are you planning on doing Suz?" Mando asked.

Chico got up close to her grasping her arms fearing he'll never see his daughter Edina Louise again.

"Your going to leave me, us, and take are children away?" Chicos angry eyes looked into Suzannes as he grip became tighter.

Stunned Mando grasped Chicos hands off her and pushed him away from her. " How can you do such a thing Suzanne?"

Approaching her Mando became very upset. " I have grown to love your children whether they are mine or Chicos, Suzanne".

Shaking his head in disgust, Mando backed off away from her.

Suzanne became upset after seeing the two men in her life that meant so much to her. "I'm sorry, I fear you two fighting with each other over me and my, our children". Suzanne cried.

Chico and Mando looked at each other. Shaking their heads had to agree with Suzanne.

Crying Chico and Mando embraced her. " You see, If I end up with one of you and my children, one of you is going to be uncomfortable about me and one of you raising your child".

Huddled together Chico, Suzanne, and Mando embraced as they shared with each other their emotions.

A nurse and a doctor rushed outside looking for Suzanne and Mando. "Suzanne, Mando?"

Suzanne, Mando and Chico each turned around finding the voices that called them.

"Yes, I am Suzanne?" Suzanne pointed to herself, as well did Mando.

"There's been a change in your sons condition. It is necessary that you should come with me to the pediatric ward."

Suzanne and Mando feared could be the change in their babys condition. Chico motioned them to hurry over. "I'll be right there as soon as I load up the car".

Suzanne and Mando hurried over to the Pediatrics area. "Oh God". Suzanne and Mando sighed. "I hope nothing else bad has happened to our son"

Suzanne and Mando were escorted to pediatrics by the doctors who indicated to them about Franciscos change. "Is he alright?" Suzanne worried fearing the worst. Mando held her hand as they made their way towards pediatrics.

Pulling them aside the doctors had Suzanne and Mando sit down. "Suzanne and Mando, Francisco is progressing well from his surgery. Very well I might add".

Suzanne, relieved to hear the news embraced Mando as she cried on his shoulder. Feeling her tears upon him, Mando embraced her comforting her in relief of the up graded condition of their son.

Chico walked in upon hearing the commotion from the other doctors. "Oh God" Chico said. "Is everything alright?" Placing his hands upon her Chico became concerned. Lifting her head upon feeling Chicos embrace Suzanne cried in relief.

"Chico, the doctors have informed us of Franciscos condition". Chico began to get upset." Oh God, no Suzanne. I'm so sorry". Chico feared. Mando released from Suzanne and embraced Chico. "Chico, Francisco, has been upgraded to critical. He is improving".

Sighing Chico embraced Suzanne as he felt a relief of pressure come off of him. Mando looked on as Chico continued to embrace Suzanne. Mando noticed a change in Chico. He still cared for Suzanne yet he was holding back for some reason.

Mando went up to Suzanne and Chico. Pulling Chico back he mentioned to both of them to go see Francisco again.

"Suzanne let's go see our son". Mando replied.

Chico released upon hearing Mandos remark. Saddened yet concerned looked at Suzanne. "Yes, Suzanne, your son needs you". Suzanne took hold of Mandos hand. Together they walked back to pediatrics as Chico followed them.

Finding the nurses fuss over Francisco. Mando and Suzanne approached their baby. "There's someone who would like to see you, Suzanne". The nurse guided Suzanne, Mando and Chico towards Franciscos crib.

Seeing Francisco lay there in the crib relieved Suzanne and Mando." Oh to be able to witness such a miracle as this". Suzanne watched her baby. "If only your sister Francine were here with you".

Chico came up from behind. "I'm sorry to disturb you from such a tender moment". Chico embraced Suzannes hand. "Reverend Bemis dropped by to have me give this to you regarding Francines funeral arrangements".

Suzanne sighed as she accepted the note Chico had given her. "Thank you Chico". Suzanne saddened to have to attend her own daughters funeral. Embracing her Chico noticed she needed comfort.

Later in the day Suzanne and Mando left to go see Reverend Bemis regarding Francines funeral arrangements.

Reverend Bemis met with Mando and Suzanne. "Suzanne, Mando, may God be with you through out your suffering".

Suzanne and Mando finished up the arrangements for Francines funeral, which was to be held tomorrow.

Mando and Suzanne left the church heading home to prepare themselves for tomorrow. Grasping her hand Mando tried to comfort Suzanne. "Suzanne, I'll meet you at the garage before the funeral .OK?" Lowering his head Mando began to get upset. Suzanne noticing Mandos sadness embraced him." Mando, are you going to be alright?"

Mando welcomed her embrace. "Yes, Suzanne. I believe so. Thank you". Mando buried his head on her shoulder and began to cry. "I wish she never had to die Suzanne. Now Francisco will be without his sister".

Saddened Suzanne embraced Mando tighter. Making it harder on herself as she understood his pain and remembered his scent as she inhaled.

"Yes Mando, I understand". Suzanne became emotional. "I miss our daughter terribly". Grasping his hair through her hands Suzanne didn't want to let go. "Francisco shouldn't be alone. He has his half-sister, Edina".

Sighing Mando released from Suzanne. "I'll see you tomorrow Suz. I'll be there at the church 10:00 am. I want to spend more time alone with our daughter."

The morning of the funeral came.

Chico, Suzanne, Ed and Louie all got ready to head over to the church. Chico grasped a hold of Edinas hand. Bending down he began to adjust Edinas special outfit for the funeral. "I'm so happy you are a part of our lives, Edina". Chico smiled brushing her hair back with his fingers.

Chico sighed as he looked at Edina. "Yes, Edina, we are going to say good bye to your sister Francine." Edina looked up to her daddy. " Francine went bye-bye?" Edina asked.

Chico tried desperately not to get upset in front of Edina. "Francine is in heaven Edina. A place where your daddy almost went but was too stubborn to go". Edina hugged her daddy out of sadness.

"Come on Edina where going to meet your mommy at the church". Chico and Edina left their apartment waiting for Ed. Ed and Louie left Ed's apartment.

Saddened Ed and Louie left Ed's apartment walked downstairs to meet with Chico and Edina. "Chico my prayers are with Suzanne, Edina and Francisco" Louie hugged Chico. "I imagine she is at the church already." Louie asked.

"Yes, she is with Reverend Bemis. Mando is meeting with them shortly. Ed picked up Edina and escorted everyone out of the garage.

Arriving at the church Reverend Bemis met with everyone before the service. "Chico, Ed, Louie, So glad to see you" Reverend Bemis embraced each of there hands. "Suzanne and Della are in the parlor".

Reverend Bemis pulled Chico aside." Chico my son. Please be very careful with Suzanne. She's taking Francines death very hard.

Mando arrived out of the parlor to meet with Chico.

"Mando!" Chico embraced him. "I know this has to be very hard on you. I'm so sorry". Chico let go of his embrace noticing a hint of a familiar scent. Shrugging it off he went to look for Suzanne.

Finding Suzanne besides Francines casket, Chico went to comfort her. Placing his hand on her shoulder he began to pay his respects. "Suzanne. You, Mando and your children are in my prayers".

Suzanne turned around crying hysterically on Chicos shoulder. "Chico I just can't believe I lost Francine. Mando is taking it very hard. He has been drinking heavily since her death. I'm frighten not only for me but for our children as well".

Chico hugged her." Suz, I'm so sorry." Embracing her Chico whispered in her ear. "I had a feeling I smelled something familiar coming from him". Suzanne released from Chicos embrace. " Please don't say anything about it to him Chico. It will only make things worse for him right now".

Chico looked into her eyes. "I won't mention it to anyone Suzanne. I'll keep an eye on him though.

Chico embraced Suzanne then left to go towards Francines casket. Approaching the casket he stopped and silently prayed for her. Nodding his head he lightly kissed the tips of his two fingers and placed them upon Francines forehead. "Buenos noches, mi Francine". Chico left to go find Mando.

Locating Mando near the hallway outside of the room he left, Mandos back was turned drinking from a flask. Chico came up from behind Mando unaware. "Mando."

Mando frightened to have him see him this way quickly closed the cap of the bottle putting it in his jacket pocket. "Chico, Chico, thank you for coming". Mando hugged Chico. "I just never thought I'd have to bury my own kid Chico". Mando gave in and pulled out the flask from inside his jacket pocket.

Chico put his arm around Mando. "I understand Mando. This has to be a very trying time for you". Embracing Mando Chico was concerned. "Are you going to be ok?" Releasing Mando Chico motioned him to a corner. Lowering his head Mando looked at his bottle then turned to Chico. "Yes, yes Chico, I'll be ok".

Looking around so no one could see him Mando took another swig from his flask. Chico watched him as Mando guzzled down what was in the flask. "Hey Mando, take it easy with that stuff". Chico tried to grab the flask away from Mando. "Don't you dare Chico. I've lost my daughter, I'm about to lose my ex wife again because of you!"

Concerned Chico looked confused at Mando." Me? What the hell are you talking about?" Mando shook his head in disbelief towards Chico. "You can't tell me you don't understand. Suzanne has to choose between you and me. Either way one of us is going to lose. Like I said Chico. I've lost my daughter, now I've lost my ex-wife thanks to you!" Mando took another swig from the flask.

Chico concerned looked at Mando." Mando, I've never seen you drink like that before. Especially so much!" Again Chico tried to grab the flask away from him.

"Damn it Chico, I said no!" Mando pushed him away. Chico stumbled back as he watched Mando suffer over the loss of his daughter.

"Mando please, I want to help you!" Chico reached out his hand to embrace him as Mando stopped him. Tears streaming down his eyes Mando breathing of alcohol pushed Chico away. Frustrated Mando threw the flask at couch near by and sat down. Burying his head in his hands he began to get upset.

Chico watched Mando wanting so bad to help him but knew this time Mando didn't want to be bothered. Thinking of Suzanne, Chico decided to see her. Walking in the parlor Chico was indicated that the service was about to start.

Chico sat next to Suzanne with Ed holding Edina, Louie and Della. Wiping his eyes Mando staggered in motioning to Chico he wanted to sit next to Suzanne.

As Reverend Bemis began to perform the service Suzanne started to cry as she witness Francines casket being closed by Reverend Bemis for the funeral service. Mando upset embraced Suzanne. Crying heavily Suzanne could smell the liquor on Mandos breath. Embracing him Suzanne tried to calm Mando down. Chico looked on at Suzanne and Mando as he lightly embraced Suzannes shoulder to comfort her.

As Suzanne continued to embrace Mando she broke down crying on his shoulder. "I'm so sorry". Suzanne cried. Mando lightly brushing her cried along with her. "Don't worry Suzanne, Francine will still be apart of our son Francisco. Francines spirit is with her brother. I'm sure of it Suzanne".

Chico concerned about Mando and Suzanne reached over and embraced both of them." Mando, Suzanne, God is watching over Francine. He is looking over your Children also" Suzanne rose her head looked at Chico as she wiped her eyes. "Thank you Chico".

The closing of the service came as Reverend Bemis said the Benediction.

"May the Lord bless our daughter Francine as she rest upon the fathers arms. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!" Reverend Bemis approached Suzanne and Mando. "The Lord is with you Suzanne and Mando. He will guide you throughout your suffering of the loss of Francine". Embracing Mando and Suzanne Reverend Bemis comforted both of them.

Noticing Mandos behavior from Francines loss Reverend Bemis approached him. "Please don't lose faith Mando from Francines loss. God has a special place for her in heaven. Yet Francines love with shine through Francisco through Gods love". Mando lowered his head and embraced Reverend Bemis.

"Thank you Reverend". Mando embraced his hand then placed Reverend Bemis hand upon hers. As Reverend Bemis embraced Suzannes hand Suzanne broke down. "Thank you Reverend Bemis for a lovely service. Embracing her hand Reverend Bemis reassured Suzanne. "Suzanne, God is aware of your many trials he has not forgotten you". Releasing from there embrace Reverend Bemis lead everyone to the cemetery behind the Church Grounds. Suzanne, Mando, Chico carrying Edina came behind them. Ed, Louie and Della followed them outside the room. Chico, Mando, Louie and Ed stepped aside as they waited for everyone else to be escorted to where Francine was to be buried. As everyone assembled around the burial plot Mando and Chico were first lead out of the Church carrying Francines casket. Ed and Louie followed as they made there way slowly towards the cemetery.

Holding Edina Suzanne along with Reverend Bemis and Della followed them as they approached Francines resting-place.

Saddened Mando along with Chico continued to carry Francines casket as each of them told her how much they loved her. Placing Francines casket upon it's resting place Reverend Bemis said a final prayer for Francine.

"Francine our beloved dear daughter of Suzanne and Mando. May the grace of the Lord be with always and forever amen!" Reverend Bemis approached one of the family members handing them a rose. As each one of them received a rose they approached the casket. Ed walked forward placed his rose and said his good byes to Francine along with Louie and Della.

Chico walked up placing his rose upon Francines casket "Buenos noches mi angeles Francine." Chico bowed his head and walked away. Mando approached the casket crying ever so. Wishing he could find some way for her to be with him again. "Mi bebe Francine, how I long for you to be with your brother and family again. Yet I understand God's plan for you. Rest in peace my beloved daughter". Mando placed the rose upon her casket and walked away.

Suzanne approached the casket placing her hands upon it. "My Baby Francine. I love you dearly. Although I never got to hold you, may God continue to embrace you till we meet again". Letting go of the casket Suzanne placed the flower among the rest of them. "Good-bye Francine, my daughter." Suzanne wiped her eyes and walked away.

Coming from behind Chico and Mando caught up with Suzanne. "Suzanne are you going to be ok?" Chico asked.

Placing her hand upon his Suzanne looked into his eyes." Chico, I have to except with what Gods plans are with Francine. Suzanne looked over to Mando. "I just hope Mando can eventually get over losing Francine."

Embracing Suzanne Chico sighed wondering how much more She and Mando could take of their current situations.

Suzanne released from Chico as she then embraced Mando. "Everything will be alright now Mando". Mando embraced her. "Are you going to the apartment?" Suzanne saddened, shook her head. " Mando I don't know what to do".

Suzanne thought It over as she embraced Mandos hand." I'm taking Edina with me to the hospital". Over hearing Suzannes comment Chico approached her." "Suzanne, Is Edina ok?"

"Yes Chico, She is ok. I need to see Francisco". Suzanne sighed. " I fear something is going to happen to him". Mando reassured her. "Suz, the doctors have told us that Francisco is doing especially well after his surgery".

Suzanne hugged Mando." Yes Mando, I remember. I just need the reassurance of seeing is all". Mando embraced her. "I understand. Would you like me to come with you?"

Suzanne was quiet." Mando please understand and I mean no harm. I would like to visit Francisco alone along with Edina". Mando silently felt rejected. "Ok, Suzanne I understand". Mando embraced her as he kissed her cheek." Please call me if you would like to get together and talk".

Suzanne picked up Edina and flagged down a neighboring cab to go to the hospital. Mando watched Suzanne leave the cemetery, doubting that their relationship with there son was now over.

Mando sighed as he walked over towards the gravesite. Staring at the fresh packed dirt. Mando began to get depressed. Chico spotted Mando pacing around Francines grave. Approaching Mando from behind Chico stopped him. "Mando what's wrong? Aren't you going home?"

Mando looked up to Chico worried." Chico, I am worried over Suzanne. She doesn't know what she is going to do now". Chico put his arm around him. " I'm sure Suzanne will want to get in touch with you".

Mando couldn't understand what Suzanne was doing. " Chico she wants to visit Francisco alone!"

Chico had no response.

Mando nudged him." Don't you get it? She is bringing Edina alone with her. Suzanne and Edina alone with MY son!"

Mando paced around Chico. "Chico that is a good indication that she is planning on leaving me, us raising our children alone!"

Mando emotionally dropped to his knees at Francines gravesite. "I've lost my daughter Chico. Now I'm going to lose my son". Patting his jacket Mando tried to find his flask of booze. Chico noticing his motions reminded him. "Mando you tossed it on the couch in the church parlor.

Mando kept patting his jacket. " I know, I know. I have another one. Ah! Here it is!" Mando open the lid and took a drink. Chico shook his head. "God, Mando why are you letting yourself go?"

Mando swallowed hard the liquor he consumed. " Chico I just don't know what I'm going to do if Suzanne leaves with Francisco and your daughter Edina". Mando looked at Chico. "You can't tell me that has never crossed your mind?"


Chico thought it over. Mando did have a point. "What if Suzanne leaves with Edina and Francisco?" Shaking his head in sadness of possibly losing his daughter Chico nudged Mando to come to the garage with him. "Listen Mando, I understand what your going through. How about spending some time with me. I really could use some company now". Chico extended his hand towards Mando helping him up.

Mando wiped his eyes. " Thanks Chico mi amigo" Chico and Mando walked back to the garage. Chico and Mando silently walked back to the garage each knowing that their lives were possibly going to change for the better or the worst. Arriving back to the garage Chico and Mando approached Chicos apartment. Looking back towards the garage Chico remembered when Suzanne first pulled into the garage. Sighing Chico turned around and opened up the apartment. Mando walked in noticing the familiar items Suzanne had when she lived with him. Sitting down on the couch Mando crouched down wondering what to make of Suzannes visit alone with her children.

Chico sat next to him leaning his head against the couch he tried to imagine a life without Suzanne and Edina if that ever happened. Mando rose up. "If she leaves Chico, I say we take her to court to get custody of our children".

"What?" Chico wiped his eyes. "Mando you can't be serious! No court in it's right mind will give us custody of our kids!" Chico rose up off the couch and paced the floor. "I couldn't do that Suzanne any ways she has been through so much lately. Besides if we were to break up. Who would want to date someone who's tied down with a kid?"

Chico sat down. "Mando I love Edina with all my heart as I know you love Francisco". Chico carelessly kicked his shoes off of him. "I'm sure Suzanne wouldn't do anything foolish. We need to get this idea of her leaving us out of her minds. After all she wouldn't leave us without our kids unless she really, really meant it".

"Don't you remember what she said to us at the hospital Chico?" Mando replied. "Yes Mando I do very well. I still think she wasn't thinking straight. After the lose of Francine I'm sure she was very vulnerable and would of said anything".

Chico sat there hoping for an answer regarding Suzanne and their children. Hearing the sound of keys open up the door Mando and Chico looked to see who it was. Walking inside was Edina and Suzanne.

Edina ran to Chico. "Daddy!" Chico picked her up as Mando looked on. Sadly he thought of his daughter Francine and his son Francisco who was still in the hospital.

"Hello Chico, Hello Mando". Suzanne tossed her keys on the table sat next to Mando. " I have good news regarding our son Mando. The doctors have indicated his increase in weight and checking him over he will be able to come home in a week or two".

Mando sat up smiling. "Suzanne that is great!" Smiling Mando then thought of what Suzanne and Chico had talked about earlier. "Suzanne. We, Chico and I need to discuss something with you".

Suzanne looked at Chico and Mando curiously then realized what he was talking about. "Does this have to do with me possibly leaving with my children?"

Chico grabbed a footstool and sat between Mando and Suzanne. " Suz, I realize you mentioned about leaving with your, our children after all we've been through. I don't blame you one bit for thinking that".

Chico embraced her hand, as well did Mando. "Suz, you have to understand that these are our children also. We wouldn't want to do anything to hurt you". Still embracing Suzannes hand he lowered his head in sadness. "I know it has to be hard trying to decide who to be with having after having two children from two different fathers".

Suzanne looked at Mando as well as Chico. "Do either of you think less of me for having a child from each one of you?" Suzanne became emotional.

Mando looked at Suzanne as he embraced her. "No Suzanne neither Chico and I think any less of you. What happened between the three of us was an act of love".

Suzanne held Chicos and Mandos hand. "I realize I have to make a decision about this so we can get on with our lives".

Suzanne held Chicos chin as she felt his warm side burns against her hand. "Chico I love you as much as I love Mando. Please don't be upset with me about the decision I make regarding our children". Letting go Suzanne place her hand upon Mandos chin feeling his warm embrace. "Mando, you and I have been through a lot together. Sharing emotions we thought we'd never thought we would discover together". Suzanne sighed. "I just never thought it would have to come to this".

Mando looked at Suzanne. " Suzanne what are you saying?" Chico scooted over closer to her. "Yeah Suzanne. What have you decided?"

Part 9

Chico and Mando nervously waited for Suzanne's response towards her decision regarding her children and their relationships with her.

Mando nervously fidgeted. "Suz, what did you decide?" Brushing his hair back with his hands Mando nervously scooted around on the couch getting closer to her. Chico looked on at Suzanne fearing her decision.

Embracing her hand Chico lightly squeezed hers. Sensing a fear of rejection Chico started to become misty. "You know Suz, you will always be a part of my life no matter what happens".

Suzanne looked at Chico as she began to become emotional. Tears streaming down her eyes she began to speak until Mando cut in. "Chico, enough with the asno que se besa!"

Chico snickered and looked at Mando.

Suzanne rose up standing in between Mando and Chico. "See this is what is it going to come down too if I plan to stick around".

Chico rose up coming close to her. "Plan to stick around? So you were planning on leaving huh?" Chico picked up a pillow from the couch and tossed it across the apartment. "All this time I bet you already had it set in your heart to leave us with your, our children!"

Suzanne scared at Chico's temper feared what he was going to do with Edina near by. Walking over towards her she began to pick Edina up.

"Oh no you don't Suzanne. Edina is my daughter also". Chico went up to Suzanne taking Edina out of her arms away from her.

"Chico what are you doing?" Suzanne tried desperately to get a hold of Edina as Chico walked quickly away from her.

"Suzanne I have grown to love my daughter Edina. I'm sure Mando feels the same way with his son".

"Chico, what makes you think you alone are getting custody of Edina?" Suzanne asked. " Chico I love you as well as our daughter".

Chico held Edina as he kissed her. "What makes you think I can't? Because I only make a meager salary as a mechanic?"

"Chico please". Suzanne paced the floor along following Chico. Suzanne stopped and sat next to Mando, wiping her eyes. She pleaded with him. " See Mando, this is what I'm afraid of " Suzanne pointed to Chico.

Mando looked at her confused.

"Chico's behavior is scaring me". Suzanne nervously covered her eyes. Mando reached over and put out his arm around her.

Kissing her forehead Mando tried to comfort her. "Chico you're just making it hard for yourself right now". Chico bent down towards Mando's face. "Mando asno que se besa!"

Mando, irritated at Chico's remark, said " Chico I'm doing no such thing! I care for Suzanne. At least in this situation you could at least show it also!".

"Mando don't you see what is happening? She's emotionally trying to use you!" Chico paced the floor back and forth between Suzanne and Mando.

Suzanne upset rose up heading towards Chico slapping his face. " I'm not trying to use anyone!" Suzanne upset tried to push Chico away till he grabbed her by the wrist. Wincing Suzanne tight to fight the pain of Chico's grip.

Holding his face from the force of Suzanne's slap Chico continued to grasp her tightly. "Suzanne my life is a part of you and Edina. I just can't accept the fact that you have to choose either one of us or decide to leave and never be a part of our lives again!"

Suzanne lowered her head as Chico still had a tight grip upon her wrist. " Sometimes I wish I had never shown up at this garage". Lifting her head Suzanne spoke to Chico and Mando. "Yet I don't know where my life would of have lead without you two in my life?"

Mando approached Suzanne as he embraced her. Chico still grasping her wrist let go of her after seeing Mando and Suzanne embrace.

Mando held her as Suzanne cried upon his shoulder." Chico, can't you let it go? You have to understand that this has to be just as hard for her as it is for us". Mando gently brushed his hand through her hair trying to calm her down.

Suzanne upset cried on Mando's shoulder as she embraced him. Chico watched as he witnessed what he thought was her answer. "I see it all Suzanne. You don't have to tell me anything. You care for Mando more then you do me". Chico, upset, carelessly sat down on the couch and watched Suzanne embrace Mando.

Mando gently embraced her, looking over her shoulder towards Chico. " Chico, Suzanne never indicated to any one of us that she has decided on me".

Chico rose up pointing to Suzanne. " Look at her Mando she's embracing you like I've never seen her embrace anyone before."

Suzanne continued crying as her tears streamed down Mando's shoulder. "Chico she's very upset right now." Releasing from Suzanne Mando looked into her eyes." Suz, are you going to be ok?" Mando wiped her eyes as she nodded to him yes.

Chico looked on at Suzanne and Mando as he shook his head in disbelief. "I can't believe I'm seeing this. I should have taken Sharon's offer when I had the chance. But NO! I thought Suzanne and I were a couple"

Suzanne released off Mando's shoulder yet she had a hold of him. " Sharon's offer? What did Sharon want with you?"

Arms on his hips Chico smiling strutted around in a circle acting all big and bad. " Well Suzanne apparently I was making quite a name for myself with Sharon and the nurses..."

Suzanne looked up at Chico." Yeah, Chico I am aware of that. Ed and I seen you make a move on Sharon during one of your therapy sessions".

Chico sarcastically moved closer towards her. "Well did you like it?"

"Like what? That you hit on Sharon? Of course not! Even Ed didn't like that Chico!" Suzanne said.

Suzanne looked at Chico. "Still what does this have to do with Sharon?" Mando sat up shaking his head. "Yeah Chico, What makes you think Sharon is going to want you back especially after you hit on her basically kissed her and then dumped her by mentioning your relationship with Suzanne".

Shocked Suzanne looked at Chico then towards Mando. "You kissed Sharon?"

"Yes Suzanne I kissed Sharon! After I found out Mando took you to Vegas to get married. I figured our relationship was over Suzanne. So I made a move on Sharon. Quite a good one according to the nurses". Chico making a fist blew on it then rubbed it against his shirt.

Suzanne upset covered her eyes and cried as Mando angrily went up to Chico slugging him. "Chico I admit I took Suzanne against her will. She did not marry me willingly!"

Chico staggering back got his footing and walked towards Suzanne as he pointed to Mando. "Suzanne, didn't you admit to falling in love with him?"

Suzanne shook her head. " I can't believe this is happening". Looking up to Chico she set him straight. "Chico will you please get over it!"

Chico rubbing his jaw asked her again. "Well did you?"

Suzanne sighed as she remembered the night Suzanne and Mando were intimate in the hotel room. " Yes, Chico I did fall in love with Mando". Suzanne rose up trying to reason with him. "But Chico you have to understand. After I was taken away and married in Vegas I thought our life together was over".

Suzanne sat next to Mando holding his hand. "Chico, even though Mando took me away from you. After realizing my chances with you were over. I discovered a softer, sensitive side in Mando."

Chico shook his head. "So this is it! Our life together is over Suzanne." Chico, disappointed, picked up Edina.

"Edina mi bebe. I'm going to do everything in my power to keep you since your mother has her set ways with another man".

Suzanne watched in disbelief." Chico, Edina is my daughter also. If you fight to keep her away from me I will do the same".

Suzanne, upset, walked towards Chico.

Suzanne got up and kissed Chico as Mando looked on. "What was that for Suzanne?" Chico sarcastically asked.

"That was for Karen. You obviously still love her." Suzanne sat down next to Mando passionately kissing him in front of Chico. " Mando, this is to you from me".

Mando kissed her again then released from their kiss rising up shaking his head at Chico." Chico you're in for a long difficult fight. If you plan on taking Suzanne's daughter away from her I guarantee it"

Mando motioned to Suzanne. " C'mon Suz, let's go visit our son at the hospital. You won't see much of us Chico after we leave. We will be too busy taking our son home from the hospital".

Suzanne saddened looked at Chico as he went to pick up their daughter Edina. Mando and Suzanne left Chico's apartment as Chico tried to let everything sink in that has happen with the three of them.

Stopping to think about Suzanne, Chico embraced their daughter Edina. "Edina, I don't know what I'm going to do. Your mother wants to leave me taking you and your brother away from me". Hugging Edina tighter Chico took Edina out of the apartment and over to the tire swing Ed had made for her.

Sighing Chico placed Edina in the swing rocking her gently. Looking up Chico noticed Ed's door was open upstairs. Coming downstairs Ed grumpily took his sweet time.

"Ed can I talk to you?" Chico asked as he continued to swing Edina.

"Yeah Chico, what's up?" Ed smiled at Edina playing with her.

Looking at Ed smiling with Edina Chico became emotional. "I wouldn't get to used to her Ed. I have a strong feeling I'm going to lose her". Chico saddened wiped his eyes.

"Lose her? What do you mean Chico?" Ed concerned embraced him.

"Ed, Mando and I asked Suzanne who she planned on being with since she has a child from both Mando and myself".

Ed shook his head disappointed in both Chico and Mando. " You did what? Haven't you two realized she is still mourning Francine's death? Having you two bring up such a subject like that. She's likely to be vulnerable enough to say anything Chico."

Chico saddened comforted Ed. " Ed I'm afraid she is planning on leaving and taking her children with her".

Ed quietly approached the workbench grasping a hold of the table he confessed his feelings towards her. "Chico, I have grown to love Suzanne and her children no matter what. It'll break my heart to see her go. To think I'm never going to see Edina again".

Ed rubbed his eyes as he sighed. " Suzanne was sweet enough to have Edina acknowledge me as her grandfather". Ed silently sat down on the steps leading to his apartment.

Chico watched Ed become saddened. "Ed I had no idea it was going to lead up to this". Chico placed his hand on Ed's shoulder. "Ed. Please don't be disappointed in me".

Looking up towards Chico Ed was concerned about him. "Chico what are you going to do if she decides to leave town and take her children along with her?"

Placing his hand upon the step rail Chico sighed at the thought of losing Suzanne and Edina.

Suzanne and Mando arrived at the hospital. Suzanne carrying Edina eagerly followed Mando to the nursery. Smiling they witnessed there Son Francisco. Suzanne emotionally watched Francisco as the nurses began to get him ready for his journey home.

"Suzanne?" A Doctor approached her. " I need to see you and Mando in my office to fill out forms regarding Francisco's release from the hospital." Suzanne and Mando followed the doctor to his office as he requested.

Filling out the forms Suzanne thought of when Chico first told her the news of her pregnancy. Stopping, she daydreamed of that morning of Chico's surprise to her.

"Suz," Mando embraced her arm." Are you ok? You seemed a million miles away?"

Suzanne shook off the daydream and finished filling out the paper work. "Yes, Mando, I was just thinking of the time I found out I was pregnant."

Mando embraced her smiling as he kissed her cheek. "I bet that was exciting. I was as thrilled as you were. To think it happened in Vegas. Getting married and realizing you were pregnant."

Suzanne gave in and confessed to Mando. Placing her hand on his she mentioned about the morning after Christmas. " Mando, I've known since the holidays".

Mando looked at her confused. "What?"

"Mando, Chico told me as he gave me his gift to me. I had no idea I swear. I thought I was coming down with the flu".

Mando rose up angrily. " You mean all this time ...Even when I took you to Vegas you knew you were pregnant?"

Mando thought it over. "So the time I would have gotten you pregnant was when I kidnapped Edina?" Mando remembered that night seeing Suzanne asleep reminded him of their first encounter when Suzanne arrived in LA.

Smiling Mando remembered sneaking in be with her those two times. "Ah yes, I remember you were thinking I was Chico. You sure enjoyed yourself Suzanne too bad you were not with him huh?"

Suzanne looked at Mando. "Mando I am not sorry for having Francisco. I love him dearly as much as I love Edina"

Mando went up to Suzanne. "I hope you're not thinking that Francisco is Chico's. Remember the DNA test? That indicated Francisco and Francine were my own flesh and blood!".

"Yes Mando I am not denying that you are their father".

The doctor came along with a nurse. "Suzanne, your son is free to go home now". A nurse came in carrying Francisco. Placing him in Suzanne's arms. Suzanne became emotional. "We are finally together as a family Francisco. Soon you will be with your stepsister, Edina".

Mando looked on as he put his arm around her. "Suzanne , I understand what you were going through. I can't imagine you telling me any other time then you did". Mando gently touched Francisco's head as he kissed Suzanne. "I'm sorry please forgive me". Sighing after finally holding Francisco, Suzanne forgave Mando. "I forgive you Mando. Let's head on home".

Heading back home Mando decided to drive by the garage and talk with Chico. "I thought we were going home Mando?" Suzanne holding Francisco asked.

"I want to talk to Chico Suzanne. I don't like to be bitter with him. He is a good amigo". Mando pulled into the garage. Helping Suzanne out of the car, Mando and Suzanne walked in looking for Ed and Chico.

"Hey old folks!" Mando shouted. Ed looked up pointing to Chico's apartment. Mando approached the door as Suzanne walked over with Ed carrying Francisco. "Suz, aren't you coming?"

Suzanne looked over towards Mando. "Yes, although I would like a few moments with Ed if that is ok with him. Ed looked at Suzanne and Mando. " Sure Suzanne, You go on ahead Mando we won't be to long".

Mando walked into Chico's apartment finding Chico read to Edina. "Hey Amigo!" Mando closed the door.

Suzanne carrying Francisco sat down towards the table near the workbench. Ed placing a cup of coffee for Suzanne sat next to her. Saddened Suzanne sighed as she sadly looked at Ed.

Sipping his coffee Ed feared what Suzanne was going to tell him. Placing her hand upon Ed's Suzanne choked up with emotion. Feeling Ed's old withered hand upon hers Suzanne began to speak. "Ed, I'm sorry but this is something I have to do". Suzanne watched Ed sadly wipe his eyes. "Now I have to tell Chico and Mando".

Ed placed his hand upon hers. "Please Suzanne, please let me speak to them for you". Ed and Suzanne went over a few details about what to express to both Chico and Mando. "Here Suzanne wait here, I'll go get Mando and Chico have them meet me in my office".

Ed sadly walked over towards Chico's apartment and knocked on the door. " Ah Hello Chico". Ed tried desperately to control his emotion as he tried to not get to emotional in front of Chico and Mando. " Hey, can I see you and Mando in my office I need to speak to you privately".

Mando and Chico looked at each other. " Sure Ed, we'll be right over". Ed closed the door as he headed over to his office.

"I wonder what he wants Chico?" Mando concerned questioned Chico.

"Yeah, I hope he is ok?" Chico wondered. Chico and Mando headed over to Ed's office.

Suzanne watched as Mando walked in while Chico followed him. Closing the door Suzanne headed over to pay phone to call a cab. Suzanne headed over to Chico's apartment preparing to move on.

Gathering all of Edina's stuff together she packed all of it in her suitcase. Edina's toys and other items she boxed up placing them beside the suit case. Looking around Suzanne witnessed all the memories that were made here at the apartment as well as in the old garage. Remembering their first encounter in Ed's old crate as he called it. Suzanne laughed as she cried.

Picking up the suitcase and box she placed them outside Chico's apartment waiting for her cab. Going back in she embraced Francisco who she placed in Edina's old crib. Reaching out her hand towards Edina. Edina followed her mommy out to sit by the table near the workbench.

Ed sat Mando and Chico down in his office. "Ah Chico, Mando, Suzanne and I were talking and I'm afraid I have some unfortunate news to tell you".

Chico slumped down having a feeling about what he was going to hear from Ed. " She's leaving isn't she?"

Ed saddened placed his hand upon his shoulder. "Chico she is torn between you and Mando to the point she is afraid it will effect her raising her children".

Mando disappointed looked over towards Ed. "Doesn't Suzanne realize how much we love her and her, our children?"

Ed opened the cash register. " Yes, Mando, that is why she is leaving. She realizes she can't have both of you at one time or another. It is only fair that the three of you get on with your lives." Ed poured himself a shot and then another.

"Suzanne doesn't want to be caught in the middle of you two. The bitterness you two have had towards each other concerning Suzanne since she's been here is not healthy for all of those involved in this mess as she calls it".

Mando concerned questioned Ed. "Where is Suzanne going?"

Ed saddened placed his shot glass in the register. " She's going back east to be with her family. Suzanne has got in contact with her relatives and they have invited her to stay with them till she figures out what she plans on doing from then on".

Chico placed his head upon his hands brushing his hair back." I can't believe she's going through with it".

"Chico, please realize that Suzanne still loves you as well as Mando". Ed said.

Mando upset went to Chico. " I'm just as shocked as you are Chico. I feel just as bad about this as you do".

Ed placed his hands upon Chico and Mando's shoulders. "Suzanne's outside along with her children waiting to say good bye. A cab is on the way over to take her to the airport".

Sadly Chico and Mando followed Ed out of his office. Finding Suzanne upset by the van . Mando and Chico walked over towards her.

Approaching her first Mando embraced her. "Suzanne, we've been through so much together. Why? Why now?"

Embracing her hand on his hand Mando ran his fingers through her hair. "We've become a family Suzanne". Saddened Mando cried as he embraced her looking at his son. Mando said good bye to him. "Buenos noches Mi Francisco, yo tem amo!" Kissing Francisco he embraced him as Suzanne watched tearfully. "Mando, you will never be without your son. You will see him again soon someday".

Kissing her passionately Mando embraced Suzanne not wanting to let her go. Releasing from Suzanne he kissed her cheek and whispered good bye.

Suzanne placed Francisco in his infant seat.

Approaching Chico Suzanne embraced him. "I can't believe this is goodbye Suzanne." Holding her tight Chico buried his tear stained eyes on her shoulder crying he didn't want her to leave. "I wished this would have worked out for us Suzanne. I've grown so fond of you and our daughter Edina. Please take good care of her."

Chico, trying to keep from crying in front of his daughter, embraced her. "Edina, I love you so much!" Chico held her placing his head upon her shoulder cried as he felt her hair upon his hands. "Please don't forget about me Edina. Your daddy loves you!"

Chico continued to embrace her just as the sound of the horn from the cab came while approaching the entrance to the garage.

Looking up noticing the cab, Chico and along with Mando realized that this was the beginning of the end of their relationship with Suzanne and her children.

As the cabdriver grabbed Suzanne's bags to place in the trunk of the car. Suzanne approached Ed placing her hand upon his. "Ed, thank you for everything you've done for me accepting me for all I've been through. You've been like a father to me". Suzanne embraced Ed as Ed and her together cried.

The cab driver opened the door as Suzanne placed Francisco in his car seat. Taking hold of Edina, Suzanne got her settled in. "Bu bye daddy!" Edina waving to Chico as she got settled in her car seat.

Getting out of the car Suzanne approached Chico and Mando.

Embracing Mando and Chico together one last time Suzanne said good bye.

"Adios mis puetorican amantes dios con estar usted!" (Goodbye my Puerto Rican lovers God be with you!)

Suzanne released her embrace as she tearfully tried to focus on the men that changed her life.

Chico along with Mando saddened just couldn't look at her as Suzanne was about to be entered into the cab. Chico wiped his eyes as he desperately tried not to see her leave out of his life again. Mando turned his back trying to fight the tears as he glanced over seeing Suzanne leave with his child and stepdaughter.

With the flip of his wrist the cab driver turned on the ignition of the car, looking back at his rear window he started to slowly back out of the garage. Suzanne watched as Chico and Mando began to slowing disappear out of her life. Lowering her head Suzanne began to cry as she envisioned a life without them help raising there children.

Feeling a movement from the front of the cab Suzanne looked as she witness the cabdriver shook his finger pointing towards the windshield.

"What's going on?" Suzanne thought glancing at her son Francisco. Edina pointed towards the front of the car. "Daddy!"

Suzanne then fussed with Edina as Edina kept pointing forward. "Yes Edina, your daddy is in the garage".

The cab driver looked into his rearview mirror towards Suzanne. "Ma'am, there's someone on the hood of my cab trying to get your attention!"

Suzanne moved up closer towards the front seat of the enormous size of the cab. Looking closer, Suzanne looked through the windshield as she witnessed Chico sitting on the hood of the car trying to flag her down.

Waving his hands towards Suzanne Chico tried to get her attention. Suzanne rolled down her window. " Chico? What are you doing?"

Chico hopped off of the hood of the cab as it stopped moving. Opening her passenger door, Chico leaned inside.

Grasping her hand Chico gently rubbed it. " Suzanne I just can't see you disappear out of my life".

Tears ran down Suzanne's face as she placed her hand upon his. "Chico what are you saying?"

Chico knelt down towards the side frame of the cab. Grasping her hand Chico looked up towards Suzanne " Suzanne please! Suzanne will you marry me?"

Suzanne shocked at Chico's approach smiled as she embraced Chico. Eagerly Mando walked towards them. " Please say yes Suzanne. We need you here with us". Mando grinned.

Looking up towards Mando Suzanne reached out her hand towards his. "Yes, Chico I will marry you and your mustache". Kissing Chico Suzanne smiled laughingly.

Suzanne rose out of the cab embracing Chico as he rose up embracing her lifting her up also. "Chico I couldn't last a day without you" Suzanne looked into Chico's dark sparkling eyes and kissed him.

Feeling her feet barely touch the ground. Suzanne released as she continued to still embrace him. Mando smiled as he witnessed Suzanne's answer to Chico's proposal.

Tears of joy flooded Suzanne's eyes as she embraced Mando. "Mando are you ok with this?" Suzanne was happy for her and Chico yet was concerned for Mando's feelings as well.

Mando smiled and shook his head in approval. "Yes Suzanne, anything to bring us all together as a family". Embracing her hand. "I've always considered Chico a brother as well towards me".

Chico smiled as he listened to Mando. " Mando? Would you do me the honor of being my best man in our wedding?"

Mando grinned with happiness. " Chico, Mi Amigo! It will be an honor to stand in your wedding!" Mando eagerly shook Chico's hand.

Ed walked out of the garage not expecting Suzanne to be here. " What's going on here?" Ed walked over to Chico and Mando not noticing Suzanne. "What the hell are you two happy about..."

Chico turned around with his arm around Suzanne.

Eyes wide open Ed did a double take. " Suzanne? I thought you left?"

Suzanne still embrace upon Chico, Suzanne looked over his shoulder. "Ed, the cab was on the way out of the garage till Chico became a hood ornament."

Chico smiled as he adjusted his collar winking at her. "A sexy one I might add"

Ed looked confused. "A hood ornament?" Ed shook his head. "Well this deserves a toast!" Ed dug into the stack of tires nearby the back wall pulling out a bottle. Mando looked back as he shook his head at Ed. " Chico that man never ceases to amaze me". Smiling Ed sipped out of the bottle. Passing the bottle towards Mando. Mando waved his hand towards Ed not excepting the bottle of booze. "That stuff will put you in an early grave old man. Where's Chico's concoction?"

Ed made a face at Mando. " Chico's concoction?" Ed realized the mixture Chico first made for him when Ed allowed him to stay and live with him. " Oh that stuff! How could of I forgotten that!" Ed looked up fearing another wicked tasted of Chico's Tabasco brew.

Chico released from Suzanne going inside the van. Smiling Chico came back holding the bottle Ed dreaded to see. "Ah lets toast this fine event shall we?" Chico each passed around a Dixie cup for Suzanne, Mando and Ed for them to use as a toast.

Ed made the first toast. " Here's to you and here's to me, and here's to the girl with the well shaped knee. Here's to the man with his hand on her garter; He hasn't got far yet, but he's a damn good starter!" Ed lifted up his Dixie cup saluting Chico and Suzanne then took a drink.

Chico lifted his Dixie cup. "Here! Here!" Slamming it down Chico shivered from the juice going down his throat.

"Too much Tabasco sauce Chico?" Suzanne asked.

Chico smiled at Suzanne. " Not enough bebe! Gimme a little more spice!" Chico winked as he kissed her. Releasing Suzanne smiled as she licked her lips from the taste of the juice Chico consumed.

Mando smiled as he put his arm around Suzanne. " Suzanne enjoy your life with Chico may you two have a long and happy life together!"

Ed smiled raised his cup. "That's a my boy Chico!" Chico looked into Suzanne's eyes as he held her chin kissing her passionately.

Ed and Mando looked on. "Ah hem, ah hem. Chico, Suzanne..." Chico continued to kiss her. Ed went to the workbench grasping a wrench and old pan. Whacking the pan he tried to get their attention. " Ok shows over Chico. Anymore of this and I'll have to post an advisory at the front entrance".

Chico released as he continued to look into Suzanne's eyes. Sighing Chico embraced her. " Yo tem amo Suzanne".

Suzanne ran her fingers through Chico's thick hair. "I love you too" Chico looked over to Ed shaking his head regarding interrupting there moment together.

Ed made a face as he brushed it off. "You two need to get a room!"

Chico made a face of eagerness. "That sounds like a good idea!" Taking a hold of Suzanne's hand Chico quickly led to her towards the van.

Mando smiled laughed as Ed went upstairs grasping Edina's hand he slowly made his way up stairs as he carried Edina's little brother Francisco.

Mando laughed at Ed remark as he watched Chico lead Suzanne towards the van " I'll see you later Chico. Congratulations Suzanne!" Mando waved as he made his way out the door.

Chico smiled as he waved back to Mando. Opening the back of the van doors briskly Chico invited Suzanne inside the van. " Come on in bebe" Chico eager to be with Suzanne followed her in as he closed the doors behind him.

Lighting a few candles Chico had by the side panel of the van. Chico placed his arm around Suzanne. Nuzzling against her Chico reminisced about their first meeting.

"This brings back memories huh Suzanne". Chico smiled at her lightly touched her chin. "Yeah, I remember you and I were intimate and Ed and was having a fit as Louie stood there smiling". Suzanne smiled.

Chico embraced Suzanne as he kissed her. Fearing that Ed might freak out again. "Hold on a minute Suz, I want to make sure we don't get interrupted again". Chico winked at Suzanne as he locked the back door and securely tightened the flap on top.

Smiling Chico then sat down at the other end of the seat. Leaning back Chico eagerly looked at Suzanne as he motioned her towards him with his index finger. " Mera mami linda oyeee!"

Suzanne smiled as she remember the day he first said that to her. Slowly and shyly she moved over towards Chico like she did when they first met. Sighing Suzanne looked into Chico's eyes. Wrapping his arms around her, Suzanne gave in to Chico's invitation as she welcomed his kiss.

Suzanne released from their kiss her arms wrapped around Chico's neck looked into his eyes. Chico's eyes were fixed upon her. "Suzanne, do you really love me?" Chico placed his long slender fingers upon her chin.

Suzanne leaned forward placing both her hands upon Chico's strong chin she lightly rubbed his mustache. Suzanne close to Chico could feel his warm breath against her. Slowly approaching him, Suzanne answered Chico with a kiss.

Chico released as embraced her. "Suzanne lets go to city hall and get our marriage license".

Suzanne leaned up towards Chico. "You mean it! We'll actually be going through this again" Suzanne smiled.

Chico smiled." Yeah Suzanne, this time hopefully without a hitch" Suzanne placed her hand upon his thick hair. " Mando seems to have accepted us now." Suzanne smiled.

Chico smiled." With you here and married to me he'll still be able to see his son." Suzanne smiled thought about Edina and Francisco. " I hope I haven't burden Ed with the children?"

"Ed loves those kids Suzanne. He is very content right now".

Suzanne thought about what Chico said regarding Ed, Mando and her kids. Rising up she looked at Chico. "Chico, you're not asking to marry me just you can be closer to Edina are you?"

Chico leaned forward closer to placing his hand on her cheek. "Bebe, I love you. You mean everything to me. Please don't think such a thing".

Still Suzanne seemed distant. Rising off the seat in the van Suzanne tried to open the back doors. "Chico, please let me out".

Chico stopped her as she looked away from him. "Bebe what's wrong?" Chico jiggled the lock open as he swung open the back doors making a loud noise.

Suzanne leaped out of the van as Chico followed her. " Suz, please tell me your not changing your mind about us"

Chico rushed towards her grasping her arms tightly. "Are you upset about what I said regarding our children and Mando's?"

Suzanne couldn't look at Chico. Chico tried to reason with her." Please Suzanne, please answer me".

"Chico I don't want to be around here just so you and Mando can see your children". Holding Suzanne closer Chico sighed as he thought Suzanne was thinking he was using her.

"Where did you get an idea like that? Bebe you know I love you, I adore you" Chico placed his long slender fingers gripping her arm. "What do I have to do to prove it to you Suzanne? Shout it through the roof tops?" Chico thought about what he said as he impatiently guided Suzanne over by the door leading towards the alley. " Here Suzanne, let me prove it to you".

Suzanne eagerly followed Chico as he dragged her outside. " Suzanne, I'm going to let the whole city know how much I love you". Suzanne looked at Chico confused. " Chico that's ok, I believe you."

"No Suzanne c'mon!" Chico stood out in the middle of the alley shouting at the top of his lungs. "My name is Chico Rodriguez and I love my girl Suzanne!".

Suzanne shyly looked around after Chico announced to the whole block of his love for her. Listening Suzanne was hearing sirens and a bum across the alley telling Chico to shut up. "Yeah!" Said the bum. "I love her too. Now shut up!"

Chico smiling kindly gave the bum a hand gesture as he embraced Suzanne. " Well Suzanne, what do you think about that?"

Suzanne looked up at Chico in awe of his expressed love towards her." Gee, Chico, I don't know what to say?"

"Tell me Suzanne, tell me that you'll never leave me and our children". Suzanne gave into Chico's request. "Chico I want us to be together forever as a family". Walking back to the garage Suzanne thought of her life together now with Chico and her children.

Walking inside of the garage Suzanne noticed Ed was rocking Francisco as Edina swung around on her tire seat.

Smiling Suzanne checked on Francisco as Ed was starting to nod off. " Here Ed, I'll take him, Thank you for watching him for me". Ed smiled as he handed Francisco over to Suzanne.

Holding Francisco Suzanne Gently rocked him as she strolled quietly around Edina. Ed woke up rubbing his eyes noticing Suzanne smiling. Rising up to see Francisco Ed smiled. "You know Francisco kinda looks like his father". Ed quietly said to Suzanne.

Suzanne nodded to Ed as she agreed with him. Brushing his hair back Ed questioned Suzanne. "Do you think this will cause any bitterness when Chico realizes this?"

Wondering the same thing Suzanne feared to think of Chico's response to Ed's comment. "Ed I hope not, I really hope not. Chico and Mando have come to an agreement it seems about me marrying Chico and having me raise his child with Chico".

Suzanne sat down with Francisco in her arms. "I just hope when Mando starts coming over often to visit Francisco, if Chico sees the resemblance in Mando while he visits. He won't do anything drastic again".

Ed sighed as he sat next to Suzanne. " I understand Suzanne and agree with you".

Suzanne discouraged confronted Ed. " Ed, I just hope I haven't made a mistake by accepting Chico's proposal".

Ed concerned looked at Suzanne. "Suz, are you having second thoughts?" Suzanne placed her hand upon his. "Ed, you know deep down I love Chico dearly. My feelings are the same for Mando".

"Yes Suzanne, I am aware of that also".

"Ed, I'm just afraid of Chico's temper along with Mando's sudden actions if this becomes a serious conflict again."

Suzanne rocked Francisco. " Ed, once Mando realizes of Francisco's resemblance, I fear he will miss him terribly and try to get custody".

Suzanne became emotional as she rocked Francisco. " Once Chico sees Mando in Francisco's eyes I'm afraid he will feel differently about him and...."

"What if he becomes bitter about Francisco and decides not to raise him?" Suzanne covered her eyes as she began to cry.

Ed approached Suzanne sitting on a bin. "Suzanne, you can't mean that? Chico loves Francisco he is a part of you as well".

"Yeah Ed I'm aware of that, still Chico will notice and seeing Mando in Francisco Chico will start becoming...."

"Jealous?" Ed asked.

"Now with Mando stopping by to see him, Chico is going to start questioning me along with Mando".

Ed looked at Suzanne." Suz, I think your blowing this out of proportion....."

Suddenly Ed heard footsteps coming inside. Suzanne turned around and looked. " Oh yeah, Well let's hope I'm not".

Mando walked in spotting Ed and Suzanne together. " Hey Suzy, Hey Old folks." Mando walked over noticing Suzanne hold Francisco. " Suz, how is our son doing?"

Suzanne smiling looked up at Mando as he embraced her from behind. " Francisco is doing well Mando".

Mando looked around. "Say where's Chico?"

"He's in the apartment." Ed said.

Chico went out as he noticed everyone around near the van." Ah there is my girl." Chico smiled as he embraced Edina. " Hello Mando nice to see you again".

"Hola Chico!" Mando smiled. " I was in the neighborhood and wondered how you were all doing?"

Mando smiled as he sat down. "So Chico are you still engaged?" Mando jokingly said.

"Yes! Life is good!" Chico smiled. Ed and Suzanne looked at each other. Keeping it under control. Ed tried to keep Suzanne settled down as she was around Mando and Chico.

Mando went to see Francisco. "Suzanne he sure is sweet boy" Mando embraced her. Chico looked on as he witnessed Mando embrace her. " Don't worry Chico, she loves you remember"

Walking towards Francisco Chico checked on him . Chico looked at Francisco as he smiled yet he noticed something different about him. "No, I must be imagining things" Chico looked at him again. "I realize that Mando is his father but this is too much".

Ed caught Chico staring at Francisco." Chico, are you ok? You seem troubled"

Chico didn't want anyone to suspect anything." Yes, Yes I'm fine Ed thank you".

Ed rose up walked towards the storeroom. " Chico can you help me please?" Ed motioned Chico to follow him inside.

Ed sat down on a stack of boxes. " Please sit down. Chico what seems to be troubling you?"

Trying to hide his feelings Chico looked at Ed. " What makes you think something's troubling me?" Chico fidgeted around the stack of boxes he was sitting on.

Chico sighed as he knew Ed had a feeling he was aware of his own feelings." Ed, I know that Francisco is Mando's child that Suzanne is raising. I got a real good look at him as I saw him a few moments ago and the resemblance of Mando in Francisco is to a tee."

Chico got up as he paced the floor of the store room." Ed I'm afraid if Suzanne raises Francisco while we are engaged she will fall out of love for me and fall back in love with Mando".

Knowing it was coming from Chico, Ed sat there fearing he had to hear this again now coming from Chico. Ed placed his hand upon Chico. "Yes Chico I was a aware that, that might happen with you sooner or later. Suzanne and I had discussed this earlier she was concerned as well".

Chico sighed." What if Suzanne changes her mind and decides not to want to marry me?" Chico got up walked out of the storeroom only to find Suzanne and Mando laughing together with their son.

Chico rushed back the storeroom motioning Ed to see him. "Look Ed, This is what I'm afraid of." Chico lowered his head. "I'm afraid I'm going to lose her."

Ed placed his hand on Chico's shoulder as he gently pulled him back into the garage. " Chico, I know you and Suzanne were made for each other. Yet you have to realize that she has a son by Mando and has allowed him to visit his son".

Chico sighed as he snuck out to watch the two of them together with Francisco. "Ed, please don't say anything to Suzanne, but I may have made a mistake by asking her to marry me".

Ed pushed Chico away from the storage room door. "A mistake? Chico, that can't be". Chico irritated motioned Ed over to look. "Look Ed, this is too much for me. Ed I'm calling off the engagement...I also have something else to tell you".

Ed saddened wondered what else Chico had to tell him. " Tell me? Tell me what Chico?"

Chico lowered his head as he was feeling ashamed of what he was about to say. " Ed, I have sorta been seeing your daughter Sharon ".

"What?!" Ed shouted. "When did this all take place?"

A sound of the entrance door appeared as the door slammed shut. "Hello? Dad?" Walking towards the office Sharon walked in looking for her father.

Cringing from the confession he heard from Chico Ed rushed along over to his office as Chico followed him.

Noticing Ed and Chico rush by Suzanne and Mando wondered what was going on. "I hope there's nothing wrong with Sharon?" Mando asked.

Suzanne holding Francisco looked over. Mando embraced Suzanne." Suz, I have to go out for a run. I'll be back in little while". Mando kissed his son good bye then kissed Suzanne's cheek. "Buenos noches Francisco "

Ed closed the door of his office heading towards his bottle of bourbon. "Whadda you want Sharon?" Taking a sip from his shot glass Ed shook his head. " So Sharon how long has this been going on?"

Sharon, confused, sat on the edge of Ed's desk. " How long has what been going on Dad?"

Ed pointed to Chico. "What do you think Sharon?" Chico sighed as he placed his hand on Sharon's shoulder. " Sharon I confessed to your father about our..."

Shocked Sharon looked up at Chico as she looked at the father placing her hand on top of his. "About our seeing each other?"

Chico shyly back away from Ed. "Yes, Sharon".

Ed shook his head as he continued to take another shot. "How could you two do this?" Ed pulled Chico's hand away from Sharon's shoulder. "What about Suzanne, You after all proposed to her!"

Sharon looked at Chico. "What?" Chico leaned down towards Sharon. "Sharon she was going to leave town with my daughter. I didn't know what else to do".

"So I was a side job huh Chico?" Sharon was upset trying to pull away from him. Chico placed his hand on her chin. " Sharon, I've been attracted to you since my stay at the hospital. I had no idea things were going to change for Suzanne and I honest".

Sharon was beside herself as she tried to make out what all that happened. "So are you two back together or what?"

Chico sighed "I don't know anymore, I can tell Suzanne and Mando are very content with each other".

"Chico they have a child together for God sakes as well as you and Suzanne," Ed said as he sat down.

"Is that what's troubling you Chico Suzanne's son by Mando? I heard the news about it in the hospital having a feeling you were quite devastated". Sharon said.

Chico held Sharon's hand." Please Sharon don't leave me. I need you."

Ed looked on disappointed at what he had heard. " So Chico are you calling off the engagement?"

Chico stood up and thought it over. Leaning down to embrace Sharon he then turned towards Sharon closer gave Ed an answer by kissing Sharon. Ed raised his arms then dropped them shaking his head as he sighed.

Sharon embraced Chico as he began to kiss her more heavily in front of Ed. Watching Chico continue to Kiss Sharon Ed had not noticed that the door was opening up. "Chico?" Suzanne walked in as she witnessed Chico still passionately kiss Sharon.

Suzanne stunned as she witnessed Chico and Sharon kiss passionately covered her eyes, upset backed away. Chico released from Sharon sighing in front of Ed as he noticed Suzanne upset.

"Excuse me Sharon, I need to talk to Suzanne," Chico rushed out looking for Suzanne.

Suzanne rushed inside there apartment crying. Shaking her head in disbelief Chico confronted her. "Chico, how could you do this to me?!" Chico had Suzanne sit on the couch next to him. "Chico I thought you loved me!"

Rising up Suzanne confronted him. "I knew I should of left when I had the chance. Some how you trying to tell me that you loved me just didn't seem right".

Chico rose up wanting to hold her. Suzanne pushed Chico away. " Suzanne, please sit down. We need to talk".

Suzanne looked at Chico. "What can you tell me that I already know by watching you and Sharon make out in front of her father of all people!"

Chico placed his hand upon Suzanne. "Suzanne I'm sorry. I was afraid if I hadn't proposed to you I would never see my daughter again".

"Well what makes you think your going to see her now? You're, you're just a womanizer!" Suzanne backed away from him. Any chance you have to get any pinoecha you run for the chance Chico!"

"That's not true and you know it!" Chico argued.

Suzanne approached Chico. "Yeah well you weren't afraid to admit your hitting on all the nurses at the hospital. God only knows what you and Sharon did while I wasn't there".

Suzanne left the apartment gathering her Children. Chico followed her "Where are you going bebe!"

Suzanne turned around. "Don't bebe me!" Ed and Sharon left the office seeing Suzanne pack up her stuff.

"Where are you going?" Ed asked. Suzanne approached Ed. "Ed, I'm so sorry but I have to get out of here". Suzanne dialed from the payphone. Crying she began to speak. " Can you please pick me up. I need to get away...." Suzanne hung up the phone.

Suzanne finished getting her children ready as a car pulled up in the garage. Mando quickly got out of the car. " What's wrong Suzanne. Why is all your stuff outside Chico's apartment?" Suzanne rushed to embrace Mando as she told him what happened.

"Chico did what? I don't believe it?! " Mando held Suzanne as he shook his head in disgrace against Chico.

Chico walked out of their apartment seeing Mando. "I gave up a relationship with Suzanne so you can be with her and now to find out you were seeing Sharon all this time too?"

Mando went up towards Chico pointing towards him. "Chico what the hells wrong with you?"

Chico angrily answered him." Mando you have no idea how it was alone not knowing one iota regarding who you were". Chico smiled as he embraced Sharon. "Sharon cared for me and nursed me back to health!" Chico winked as he kissed her.

"Besides I knew the divorce you gave Suzanne was one thing you two didn't want to happen!" Chico angrily confronted Suzanne and Mando. "Suzanne was heart broken that I broke you two up!".

Mando shook his head in disbelief. " Chico, you knew how Suzanne meant so much to you!" Suzanne couldn't believe she was hearing this. "You mean all this time you were living a lie just so you could just keep your daughter?" Suzanne went up closer towards trying to slap him. Chico grasped a hold of her arms before she could ever make a move to hit him.

"What's the matter Suzanne?" Chico sarcastically smiled at her. " Your going to get what you want now!" Mando angrily went up towards Chico trying to pry him off of her. " Let go of her! You're hurting her!" Finally being able to release Suzanne off of Chico. Mando looked at Suzanne to see if she was ok. "Chico I am very surprised at you for treating Suzanne this way".

Suzanne looked at Chico as she rubbed her arms from Chico's grip. "Chico you could of at least told me about this instead of surprising me." Chico went up to her. "You surprised me about getting married! What the hell is the difference?" Chico said.

Ed stood there stunned at what he was seeing through Chico and Suzanne. "This crap has got to stop!" Ed shouted.

"Why does this all have to be brought up now? Just because Suzanne was trying to leave to get on with her life you pull this on her and everyone else Chico," Ed angrily pointed his finger towards Chico.

Chico paced the floor. "I'm not trying to pull anything Ed!" Chico took hold of Sharon's hand. " Come on Sharon. Let's spend some quality time together". Chico winked at Sharon motioning her to come on.

Ed, Suzanne, and Mando watched Chico lead Sharon out of the office towards the van. Suzanne shook her head in disbelief. "That must be where Chico christens all his women when he wants them". Suzanne saddened thought about there first time together in the van.

Mando irritated at Chico's behaviors watched as Chico closed the van doors after he and Sharon climbed inside.

Mando approached the van. "GET OUT! GET OUT!" Chico lifted himself up and out of the top sunroof. " Hey can a man have a little privacy here? I got me a woman inside!" Chico winked at Mando then dropped back inside the van.

Mando disgusted headed back to the office. "Come on Suzanne you can stay with me along with your children. At least I have feelings for you and your children"

Mando helped Suzanne her stuff in his car as she got her kids settled in. Mando closed Suzanne's door then hustled over to his. Starting up the car Mando gunned it while his tires squealed when he barreled out of the garage.

After hearing the tires squeal Chico quietly rose over the roof top sighing over their departure. "Well it's time to get on with my life".

Dropping down he approached Sharon. Embracing her he kissed her. " Sharon I want us to be together for real. None of this I'll-meet-you-when-I-can shit". Sharon placed her hand upon his. "For real?" Sharon smiled. "I just hope my father can except us together." Chico embraced Sharon hugging out of relief. " Well if I must I'll find another apartment".

"Hey Chico, I'll have to check on it with my landlord but if you can, how about it?" Sharon smiled.

Chico looked curious. "How about what, Sharon?"

Sharon grinned as she kissed Chico. "Move in with me?"

Chico backed away unexpected of her invitation. " You want me to move in with you?" Chico smiled at the thought. " Hey I like that Sharon" Chico moved over to kiss her. Checking her watch Sharon had to get out of the van. "Chico, I'm sorry I wasn't expecting to be here this long I have to go back to the hospital".

Chico opened the doors of the van and helped Sharon out. " Here you go my dear!" Chico escorted Sharon out of the garage. Looking out for Sharon Chico watched her leave the garage. Smiling in relief of finally being able to be with Sharon Chico turned around going back to his apartment only to find Ed with his arms crossed standing behind him.

"Chico, now that we are alone, we need to talk" Ed cornered Chico and motioned him towards his office. "Sit down Chico!" Ed pointed to the chair next to the desk. "How in the hell can you do this to me, to Suzanne and to your daughter Edina?"

"I was aware that Sharon had a crush on you when you were in the hospital. But I had no idea it was going to this far?"

"Well Ed, like I always hear on the streets about me?" Chico said smiling. Ed concerned about Chico's remark. "The only thing I've heard about you Chico is that your known as 'Love'em and leave'em for nothing Rodriguez'."

Chico smiled sarcastically at Ed as Ed grabbed Chico's shirt pulling him up. "Are you going to love and leave my daughter Sharon? Like you've done with all the other girls you've been with?"

Chico stared at Ed. "Well at least I know Sharon isn't going to get knocked up like Suzanne did".

"Do you think Suzanne did that deliberately? I don't think Suzanne would stoop that low Chico". Ed released from Chico's shirt pushing him back to his seat.

"I can't believe this happening Chico, You've ruined a perfectly good chance to have a decent family with Suzanne by being involved with my daughter!"

"What's the matter Ed. Am I not good enough for your own daughter?" Chico paced around Ed's office. "Apparently your daughter thinks so Ed". Chico opened up the filing cabinet. Digging out a few of his items he kept for safekeeping.

Rushing out of the office Chico kicked a oil can that was in his way." What are you doing?" Ed shouted. Chico angrily turned around facing Ed. " Ed, if you can't except the fact that I'm with your daughter then your just going to have to face it"

Ed looked at Chico confused. "Face what Chico?"

Chico upset yet saddened handed over to Ed his keys to the apartment. "Ed I'm leaving. I'm moving in with Sharon". Chico turned around headed towards his apartment packing his stuff.

Saddened Ed went back to his office looking for a bottle. Feeling his life was going to change now that Suzanne and Edina were gone now Chico was going to leave also to live with Sharon.

Mando and Suzanne arrived at Mando's apartment. "Thank goodness I still have the crib I purchased for Edina a while back". Mando shook his head still not believing what happened at the garage." Suz, are you going to be ok?"

Suzanne looked at her children as well as Mando. "Yeah Mando I think so. I just hope Edina handles this well". Mando concerned placed his hand upon hers. " It'll be all right Suz, Edina will adjust well". Pulling into the parking space Mando stopped the car as he helped Get Suzanne's children out." Momma, Why are we not at daddy's?" Edina asked as Mando holding her hand took her over to Suzanne.

Suzanne bent down towards Edina." Edina honey your daddy has someone else to live with now". Suzanne sighed. "Are we going to live with Uncle Mando?" Suzanne held Edina's hand as she looked up towards Mando carrying Francisco. "Yes, Edina, you and your brother are going to live with Uncle Mando".

Mando lead the way towards his apartment as Suzanne followed. Suzanne walked inside the apartment remembering the time she spent here. "Well we're home at last Edina". Mando handed Francisco over to Suzanne then went to get the rest of Suzanne's things. Suzanne placed Francisco in Edina's old crib, as he lay fast asleep. "Buenos noches Francisco" Suzanne kissed him good night then got Edina ready for bed also.

Suzanne left their room as she started to unpack. Mando came inside carrying all that she had left behind. "Thank you Mando!" Suzanne embraced him. "Forget about unpacking now Suz, Relax a while and unpack later". Mando sat on the couch patting on the couch to have her sit next to him. Suzanne leaned over and embraced Mando. "Thank you Mando. Thank you for taking us in."

Part 10

Suzanne struggled, as she couldnt realize why Chico had turned against her. "Chico, I know weve been through so much lately, but why? Why now?" Leaning back on the couch Suzanne tried to figure Chico out. Edina played near by with her toy tool chest Ed had gotten her. Edina walked over towards her mother handing her a toy wrench, "Daddys toy!" Edina smiled handing to Suzanne. Wondering how Ed was doing after Chico's sudden actions Suzanne decided to call him, " I better see how he is doing?" Suzanne rose off the couch reaching for the phone, dialing Eds number she patiently waited for Ed to pick up the phone. After several rings Suzanne almost hung till someone answered the phone. "Hello?" Ed said grumpily then sighed. "Hello Ed? This is Suzanne, how are you? I have been wondering howve you been?" Suzanne asked. Ed hurriedly stumbled through his papers on his desk, "Ah Suzanne, Im ok". Suzanne listened as he continued. Suzanne concerned wasnt believing Ed, "Ed, you dont sound ok? Did I catch you at a bad time?" Suzanne wondered. Frustrated Ed sat down on his desk full of papers. "Well Suzanne, I am falling behind on my work right now" "Falling behind? Isn't Chico there helping you out?" Suzanne concerned motioned Mando over. Ed shuffled his papers on his desk, "Suz, Chico left, me moved out." Suzanne shocked to hear what Ed had said took the phone off her ear placing it back on. She questioned Ed. "Chico, moved out? Why?" Suzanne looked over to Mando, as he leaned against the receiver listening in with Suzanne. "Suzanne, I got into a bad argument with Chico over my daughter Sharon and you Suzanne. He threatened to move out. Hes living with Sharon now". Saddened Suzanne tried to comfort Ed. "Oh Ed, Im so sorry". Mando waved to Suzanne to hand the phone over to him, passing the phone over to Mando, Suzanne looked on. Mando disappointed talked to him, "Ed, I swear, I had no idea he was up to this. Are you going to be ok?" Mando struggled to reason with Chicos current actions. Ed looked out his office door seeing his garage in a mess, "No, no, Mando Im fine." Mando didnt agree with him, "Ed, Im coming over to help you out. All right? Ill bring Suzanne and the kids with me, Edina misses you terribly". Mando hung up the phone. Helping Suzanne get her children Mando helped settled them in his car. "I hope Ed is ok. He was such a wreck when Chico was in the hospital. I hate to see how he is now that Chico has left him to go live with his daughter Sharon.

Mando and Suzanne arrived at the garage, driving in the garage Mando notice how much the garage was in shambles since Chicos departure. Auto parts were scattered everywhere. Helping Suzanne get her children out of the car, Mando held Edinas hand as Suzanne carried Francisco. Looking around the garage, Mando couldnt believe what he saw. "Ed, Ed! Its me Mando!" Shouting throughout the garage as Mando looked at the jobs Ed was so backed up on. Hurrying out of the storeroom Ed went to greet them, embracing Ed, Suzanne was glad to see them. Ed smiled at Edina and Francisco, "How are you doing Edina?" Ed bent down to hug her. Edina smiled at Ed, "Looking good papa Ed!" Suzanne and Mando looked at each other then laughed. Ed rose to greet Francisco, "Francisco has grown since Ive seen him last. Im so happy he is improving". Mando leaned over checking on Francisco. "Hes a fighter Ed" smiled Mando. Ed happily placed his old withered hands on Franciscos forehead, "Just like his old man". Mando embraced Eds arm, "Ed, I realize that since Chicos sudden departure, youve been falling behind on schedule. Please, allow me to help out at least till you find a suitable replacement". Ed sighed, lowered his head concerned for his business and for Mandos offer. "Thank you Mando, that would be swell of you to help out if you could". Mando patted his arm, "Great! Where can I begin!" Ed looked around, "Any where you want Mando. Im going in my office to take a nap!" Ed eagerly walked over to his office as Mando opened the hood of a car. For quite a while Mando was busy working on repairs as Suzanne and her children stayed with Ed in his office. Being too involved in his work, Mando didnt realize Chico came inside the garage.

Heading inside the store room, Chico came back out with two boxes, "Hmm, I see Ed has already replaced me?" Mando busy working didnt noticed Chico till he looked up, "Chico, what are you doing here? Are you coming back to stay?" Chico smiled as he sarcastically laughed, "You gotta be crazy man!" Chico strutted around the car Mando was working on. "Mando! Im having the time of my life!" Mando too involved in his work didnt look at Chico, "Well as long as you're happy Chico". Chico leaned inside the hood trying to get Mandos attention. "Man, I never had it so good since Ive been with Sharon. She treats me right brother". Mando tried so hard to avoid Chicos sarcasm, "Treats you right? You cant tell me that Suzanne didnt?" Mando disgusted with Chicos behavior walked over to the other side of the car. "Yeah Mando, at least I know that Sharon loves me. Suzanne was a great lover but not like Sharon. Sharon is free and easy brother". Chico smiled just as Mando went straight up to Chico waving a wrench at him, "Dont brother me Chico, Suzanne is sadden that you left her for Sharon". Mando began to work on the car; leaning over he questioned Chico, "Tell me Chico, what makes you think you have it better now?" Suzanne left the office approaching Mando, "Mando, Im taking Edina and Francisco over to Dellas for something to eat. You want anything?" Suzanne looked over finding Chico standing next to Mando talking to him. Stunned to see Chico back, Suzanne leaned against the car. "Chico, what brings you here? We all thought you left?

"I have to get more of my stuff Suzanne. Mando tells me that you're saddened that I left you for Sharon?" Chico sarcastically made a sad face in front of her. "Well I just happen to enjoying my new found freedom with Sharon. As much as we love each other, we are not tied down to anything". "Tired down to anything?" Suzanne was saddened to hear that coming from Chico, sadly walked away. Mando slammed the hood of the car he worked on, "Chico, what is with you lately?" Chico strutted around the car leaning against it, "A man needs to feel loved Mando. Sharon supplies my needs". Chico watched as Suzanne rushed into Eds office, Mando looked on as he saw her shut the office door. "I better see if she is ok". Mando looked back at Chico as he walked over to the office, "Chico, you're loco!" Mando opened the office door only to find Suzanne crying as Ed sat by to comfort her. "I dont know what happened Mando. Suzanne just rushed in here all upset?" Mando leaned over towards Suzanne trying to comfort her also. "Chico was implying that Suzanne had tied him down whether her alone, or her and her children". Mando continued to comfort Suzanne while whispering to Ed. "Ed, I think Chico is scared about raising her children. Maybe he is trying find a way to just break it off instead of just telling her his fears". Ed looked at Mando as he held Suzannes hand, "Chico, has always been out spoken about anything. What could make him not bring it up now?" Mando and Ed looked at each other having an idea of why Chico bailed. Ed covered his head, "Ah geesh, I cant believe it. You really think so?" Mando embraced Suzanne as he looked up at Ed. Mouthing the words so Suzanne wouldnt here. "Its possible". Suzanne upset looked at Mando and Ed as Ed drank a shot then another. " What? What do you know?" Mando tried to calm Suzanne down, "Suzanne, nothing to worry ok?" Suzanne settled down as she embraced Mando. Ed placed his hand on her shoulder hoping shell get over this. Sighing Ed sat down. " Geesh, I just dont understand why he couldn't confront me about this?" Covering his head Ed thought about his daughter Sharon, "Her career will be put on hold because of this". Ed thought, " Where is he going to get the money to support her?" Noise came in from the garage doors. Ed along with Suzanne and Mando casually looked out the door way. Chico and Sharon smiling hurried over towards the van, "Nobodys around Sharon, lets get it on in the van, bebe!" Chico putting on his charm opened the back doors as he helped Sharon inside. Ed leaning against the door way to his office slapped an empty bottle against the palm of his hand, "Im gonna beat the living daylights out of him, if its true!" Suzanne and Mando looked at Ed. Suzanne concerned confronted, "Ed what are you talking about?" Mando reassured her, "Dont worry Suz, this is between Ed and Chico". Ed stood at the door continually smacking his bottle against his hand raring to go till Mando stopped him. "What a minute old folks, your not going anywhere with out me". Ed quietly walked over to the van as Mando and Suzanne followed. Ed near the van turned towards Suzanne motioning them to be quiet. Ed patiently waited for the right time as he listened in to see what was happening inside the van. Quiet moans began to echo out of the van. Hearing the emotions from Chico and Sharon, Ed clenched his bottle hard enough it would of broken in his hand. Suddenly the van began to rock side ways. Eds eyes bugged as he witnessed Chico having sex with his own daughter. Ed bottle in hand was ready as he extended it back. Ed planned on smashing it against the van till he heard what he thought he heard. Curious, Ed relaxed his arm as he listened in. "What is it Ed?" Mando and Suzanne quietly asked. Ed placed his finger over his mouth indicating to be quiet. " Shh, I hear something sounds like moaning." Ed whispered. Ed leaned his ear closet to the van to hear more, "Oh honey" Chico said as the van began to sway. Sharon moaned as she began to get into the rhythm Chico had started. Ed, Suzanne, and Mando stood there, couldnt believe they were hearing this. Deciding to leave Ed began to motion to Suzanne and Mando to get away from the van till they all heard what they thought they heard. "Oh honey!, Oh Suzanne! , Oh." "Suzanne!?!?!" Sharon shouted. "Chico, how could you!" Mando looked stunned then started to laugh, as Sharon became angry with Chico. Ed stood there stunned that Chico would say Suzannes name while was involved with his daughter. "Now, I dont know if I should beat the living day lights out of Chico for screwing my daughter or calling her Suzanne?" Suddenly wrestling noises were made as the van began to shake. The back doors swung open when Sharon rushed out of the van as Chico followed her, "Come on bebe, I didnt mean it I swear!" Chico looked behind him finding Ed, Suzanne, and Mando standing at the side of the van. Mando was still bent over laughing hysterically. Looking up towards Chico, Mando expressed his response towards Chicos comment, "Boy Chico, you really did it this time!" Chico looked at Mando angrily shaking his head at all who watched them. "What the hell is this? This ain't no peep show!" Suzanne watched Chico try to catch with Sharon. " Somehow Ed, that made my day". Ed still was mad over Chico from catching him with his daughter Sharon and the possibility of what Mando and him talked about earlier. Chico ran towards Sharon finally catching up with her. Sharon upset looked at Chico, "You said you were over her! Yet you have the kahonas to say her name while we are making out!?" Chico tried to embrace Sharon. "Please, bebe, I just got caught up in the moment. You mean everything to me. Cant you realize that?" Sharon approached Chico closer, "Chico I realize that I made a mistake going out with you!" Chico upset grabbed Sharon's arms and tried to embrace her. Sharon cried as she tried not to think of what her father thought about all this, "Chico, my father is more furious with you know that your dating me know, and now probably realizes our situation".

Chico sighed as he thought about what Sharon and him were now going through. "Sharon Im so sorry. Your father is going to kill me". Sharon placed her hand against his, "Kill you? Once he finds out I was a part of this, my father may disown me, but I may also lose my nursing license". Chico sighed as he embraced her, "Still Sharon, I dont know how you did it?" Sharon looked around seeing if her father was present. " Chico, your withdrawals were too much to bear. I had to find away possible to keep you from continuing your seizures". Chico embraced Sharon, "Yeah I tried to get the of the meds that I had hidden in the Eds tock room. I just hope that they dont find the rest." Sharon looked at Chico as she examined his torso, "How are you feeling though Chico?" Chico placed his hand upon hers, " Sharon I have good days and bad days still. Im trying my damndest to walk normal". Chico stretched out his leg, "Nobody seems to notice I still have pain". Chico and Sharon decided to go back into the garage, "With any luck maybe I can get the rest and that will be it". Chico and Sharon snuck back inside the garage. Ed walked in on them corning Chico and Sharon, "Ok you two what gives?" Sharon and Chico confused looked at each other then at Ed, "What are you talking Ed?" Furious Ed stood in front of them, "You two know damn well what Im talking about". "So what plans have you with my daughter?" Ed crossed his arms waiting for an answer. Chico confused asked Ed the same thing, "Plans? Ed what are you talking about?" Ed angrily paced beside them, "You two having a baby! Thats what Im talking about? When are the two of you getting married for crying out loud!" Ed being edgy shifted his feet. "Baby? Is that what all this fuss is all about? You pissin and moanin by the van?" Chico snickered as he hugged Sharon, together they laughed at Ed. "Dad, you should know me by now!" Chico laughed then started to think of Ed being concerned, "Ed, I think there is something you should know". Chico motioned Ed to sit down. "Sharon has been smuggling more Oxycondone for me. I still can't get over my withdrawals Ed". Upset, Chico tried to fight his emotion in front of everyone. "Thats why I had to break up with Suzanne. With Suzanne and our daughter being more involved now as a family. It would have been difficult for Sharon to get me whatever I needed for my withdrawals". Chico sat fearing everyone's feelings towards him now, "That would have made more suspicious". Ed surprised sat down as he then looked at Sharon. "You have been supplying Chico drugs?" Concerned embraced her father from behind, "Dad only small amounts to get Chico through his withdrawals". Disappointed Ed shook his head at Sharon, "All this time I thought Chico was ok?" Suzanne walked over to Ed and Chico when she noticed Chico had settled down, " Is everything ok Ed?" Ed and Chico turned towards Suzanne and Mando. " Everyone, we need to all sit down and discuss what has been going on with them". Chico pulled out a chair for Suzanne and Mando who each had a hold of her children, "Mando, I have not only been distrusting towards you but with Ed and Suzanne, along with Sharon". Mando and Suzanne held hands together as they wondered what Chico was going to confess to now. Chico held Suzannes hand, "My feelings for you havent changed Suzanne. I care for you as well as our daughter Edina". Chico then took hold of Sharons hand, "With what I have been through lately Sharon has been very supportive and grateful. Which is why I care for her so", Chico still looked into her eyes, "So much I have fallen for her". Suzanne sighed as she listened to Chico, "What could be so bad that you needed Sharon instead of me?" Lowering his head, Chico became saddened as he lowered his head. "Suzanne, I have had more withdrawals to the point Sharon was willing to smuggle more Oxycondone to help alleviate the pain of them". Suzanne stood up confronting Chico, "You mean all this youve been taking that medication without telling me?" Resting his hand on hers Chico tried to reason with her, "Suzanne, please". Pulling away Suzanne looked at Chico disappointed, "Chico you could of told me about this I would of understood totally". Suzanne tried not to get upset in front of everyone as she tried to control her anger. Chico embraced her from behind, "Come on bebe! Please understand!" Suzanne pushed Chico away, " No Chico, Ive had it. You and Sharon are obviously an item now". Saddened Suzanne looked at Ed, "Please enjoy your future son-in-law. Im sure by now that they are planning on getting married too". Ed watched Suzanne gather her children as Mando got up to say good bye, "Bye Ed, Ill call you later after Suzanne settles down". Mando and Suzanne each carrying her kids left the garage. Ed looked at Sharon, then at Chico, "You two better work this out after all youve broken a perfectly good relationship with your child's mother".

Chico watched as Suzanne with Edina was walking away out of his life again, "If I have to Sharon, I will fight for custody of my daughter". Sharon concerned put her arm around him, "Chico, do you think you have a chance? After all my father has frequently mentioned about your past as a juvenile delinquent". Chico sighed at the thought of Ed always reminding him of his bad boy days. Leaning forward, Chico rested his against his troubled head against his hands. Chico had a horrible feeling come over him agreeing with Sharon about his troubled past, "Would I even have a chance?" Looking at Sharon he thought about his future, "What future?" Chico thought. "I cant even keep a decent relationship. How am I going to keep my own kid?" Chico decided to get up and get some air, "Im going for a walk to clear my head. Ill be back in a while". Chico concerned about his future, walked out of the garage. Step by step each pace he kept his mind on his future. Finding an empty park bench, Chico sat down as he thought about Sharon, Ed, Suzanne, and his daughter. "If I plan on pursuing this, and it doesnt work out, Ed will have my head". Chico struggled to keep his mind on one thing at a time, leaning back he tried to vision a life without his daughter Edina Louise. Looking up Chico tried to vision a life without his daughter, " I love Sharon, Im sure of it." Chico struggled to continue his desire for Sharon, yet thoughts of Edina, then Suzanne flooded his mind. "Sharon is apart of my life now, so is Edina". Chico rose out of his seat as he began to pace around the park bench, "Suzanne will never let me raise my own daughter without her". Chico disgusted with his feelings sat down on the park bench, "Now that Ed knows how Sharon and I feel about each other, hell never forgive me if I break up with her". Sadly Chico rose up off the bench as he started to pace the ground to think this through. "I should just quit my job at Eds and start a new life at another job". Chico looked all around trying to find any kind of hiring signs. Spotting one near by he walked in at the back door, "Hola? Hello?" Chico walked inside, "Im here about the help wanted sign that was out by the door". Della yelled from the other side of the store, "Come in. Ill be right you". Chico walked in to the front of the building only to realize he had just walked in Dellas store, "Oh geesh! I must have been billed not to see the familiar store front". Chico looked around the store as Della walked in the front entryway. "How can I help youChico?" Della concerned wondered why Chico was here looking for work. "Chico, why in blazes are you here asking for work?" Della motioned Chico to sit down, "Are you in any financial trouble?" Chico sighed, knowing Della wouldnt let him leave till she got the story and nothing but it, messed nervously with his hair, "Della I have been looking for work because I had to leave the garage".

Della gave Chico a cup of coffee. "Leave the garage? Why?" Della sipped her coffee as Chico dreaded to answer her. "Della, I have been seeing Eds daughter Sharon". Della placed her coffee cup on the table, "Seeing Eds daughter?!" Della was about to pass him some rolls then she held back, " Chico, you have a loving gal and daughter who loves you. How could you throw it all away just for a one night fling?" Chico sighed as he desperately tried not to look at her, "Della, this one nighter has been going on since my stay at the hospital". In disbelief Della shook his head, "Chico, I dont know how you got yourself into this mess, but I suggest you get yourself out of it". Chico depressed leaned against the table, "Della ever since I realized Suzanne was married to Mando I excepted it and moved on. Sharon was real sweet with me during my therapy, Della". Chico straightened up on the chair, "When Mando granted Suzanne the divorce, sure I was happy but" Della was troubled with Chico, "But what ChicoDont tell me your having second thoughts know about Sharon?" Della cringed at the thought of seeing Eds face. "Chico, once youve made a commitment with Eds daughter in front of him as you have indicated. Youre his soon to be son in law for life! You just start getting used to calling him dad". Chico slumped down further on the chair, "Della, Suzanne doesnt want to have anything to do with me anymore". Della wasnt surprised with his response, "Can you l blame her? Knowing you Chico, you probably made out with Eds daughter in front of Ed and or Suzanne". Chico thought giving Ed the answer to what Sharon and him were up too when Suzanne walked in on them. "Della, I had no idea that Suzanne was going to walk in and see me make out with Eds daughter in front of Ed".

Shocked Della placed her coffee cup down on the table, "You made out with Eds daughter in front of Ed?" Della blew into her coffee couldnt imagine the thought of seeing that, "Thats kinda risky ain't it?" Chico cringed at the thought of seeing Ed angry again, "Della, thats why I need this job. I need the bread to pay for my new apartment". Della thought it over as she wondered about Ed, "Did Ed kick you out? I wouldnt blame him if he did". Chico stood up as he put on his coat, "No Della, I left. Ed didnt accept the fact that I was dating his daughter so I moved out of Eds and in with Sharon". Della stood as she got some items ready, "And know you want to move back in with Suzanne? How do you know if she really wants you back? Suzanne may have already set her ways with Mando and her children. Della handed Chico a bag of food. "Della, Im going to try to get my daughter and her mother back to stay with me again, if its the last thing I do". Della sighed as she opened her door for Chico, "Unbelievable Chico, Ill believe it when I see it. You have been digging yourself a deep hole. I suggest you really sit down and figure out what you really think is best for everyone before you fall in". Chico grabbed a hold of the door knob, "So do I have the job?" Della sighed, "Sure Chico come in tomorrow morning and help with deliveries". Chico gave Della a big smile as he walked out of her store. Suzanne and Mando arrived back at his apartment. Sighing after an emotional afternoon at Eds. Suzanne placed Edina down as Mando placed Francisco in his playpen. Exhausted Mando and Suzanne sat on the couch thinking about what happened at Eds today. Looking over to Suzanne, Mando wondered about her feelings for Chico, if she really meant to have Chico out of her life. "Suz, can I ask you something?" Mando concerned placed hand upon hers, Suzanne looked at Mando after feeling his embrace. "Are you sure you want Chico out of your life?" Suzanne listened to Mando as she thought about Chico and this unfaithfulness towards her. "Mando, I cant live with someone whos been so dishonest to me as he has. Chico lied to me about Sharon and now about his Oxycondone he continued to take". Suzanne rubbed her eyes as she thought about Chicos affair with Sharon and the painkiller he continued to take without her knowledge. "You know what gets me is that I didnt even notice a change in his behavior when he continued to take it after he was released from the hospital". Concerned Mando embraced her, "Did you notice any unusual behavior after Chico was home?" Suzanne thought of any unusual behavior Chico was involved in, "The only thing I can recall Mando is when Chico was babying his pain. Chico was bitter towards me about that I shouldnt love him anymore because he claimed he was a cripple". Thinking of what Suzanne said, Mando had an idea, "Maybe that was when he decided to see Sharon about more pain killers. She must of given him doses to help him through it but not give him the same amount that he had in the hospital, the after effects when he was there were brutal. Sighed as she agreed with Mando, "I suppose that is why Sharon and him are together. She was able to help him recuperate and he appreciated it in his own way".

Suzanne as she felt reality set in again, "I guess this is it Mando, Chico is totally out of my life, if he is going to be this way". Suzanne struggled as she thought about her daughter Edina not having her father with her again. "Mando, what if Chico and Sharon try to get custody of Edina?" Mando leaned forward thinking the same thing, "Well Suz, well have to fight back". Mando got up then decided to call Ed. "Ed Browns Garage" Ed said. "Ed, Ill be over soon. Suzanne and I needed some time away, but we believe we will survive this ordeal". Ed sighed as he had hope for some small miracle regarding this situation, "Mando, I just dont know what brought all this on?" Ed sat slamming a shot, "I am so sorry for Suzanne and her children. Im sure Edina has to wonder why she keeps getting shifted to one place or another?" Sighing Mando agreed as he looked over to Suzanne's daughter, "Ed, Suzanne and her children are coming along with me. Suzanne could use the support as I know you miss her kids". Mando motioned to Suzanne to get her kids ready to leave. "Besides Ed, Suzanne and I were discussing this earlier we think we know why Chico is seeing Sharon". Mando and Suzanne left the head on over to Eds garage. Pulling into the garage Mando spotted Ed going through an old drawer in his workbench. Mando helped Suzanne get her children out of the car just as Ed passed them by carrying a sign. Pounding against the building Mando holding Francisco had to see what Ed was up too. Suzanne holding Edina's hand followed as she witnessed what she had hope would never happen, "You putting the garage up for sale? Why? Mando pleaded, Suzanne couldnt believe this was happening. "Thats right Mando, Im through with this old dump!" Ed grumped. Suzanne picked up Edina as she followed him back inside the garage, "You have so many good memories here Ed, you just cant throw it all away".

"Memories? Huh!" Ed said as he stomped on over to the storage room, "They have been more like nightmares Suzanne." Ed looked directly at Mando and Suzanne, " Ever since that damn punk kid Chicano rode in here on his bicycle, my life has been a living hell!" Suzanne and Mando didnt know what to make of Eds attitude just as Chico rode in with his bicycle. Ed looked up pleading to God, "Here we go again! Its gonna be one of those days, huh God!" Chico got off of his bicycle walking it over to the side of the office wall. "Ed, you better not be talking to God with liquor on your breath" Chico yelled over. Ed walked over to Chico, "I was just informing God how miserable my life has been since youve showed up in my garage". "Oh so it has been a normal average day for you after all, huh Ed?" Chico walked over towards Ed taking a newspaper out of his back pocket. Working at the workbench Ed putted with a muffler minding his own business. Chico went up from behind him clearing his throat, "You better do something about that throat kid. Someone like you cant afford to be sick". Chico continued to clear his throat as he grabbed his paper opening it up to the ad. Ed looked at Chico confused, "Whadda you want kid? Cant you see Im busy?" Standing back, Suzanne and Mando watched as Chico walked over to talk to Ed. "Do you think we should see if he needs are help? What if he is bothering Ed or worse, doesnt want him around at all?" Suzanne whispered at Mando. Holding her back Mando had her wait behind him as he looked on, "Shh! Suzanne this is where Chico starts to crack under pressure!" Suzanne looked at Mando, "Crack?" "Yeah Suz, Chico is going to cave in and ask Ed for his old job back". Mando leaning Suzanne pointed to the want adds Chico had with him. Suzanne motioned to Mando to leave the garage for a while so Ed and Chico could have some time alone, "Lets wait here a little while, Chico might not like the fact that were here while hes trying to come back to Ed". Mando and Suzanne moved farther back so they wouldnt disturb Ed and Chico. Chico followed Ed's every move while Ed slowly moved around the garage getting his tools. Smiling Chico began to put on his moves as he laid out his charm towards Ed. "I see you're looking for a mechanic? Im a pretty great mechanic myself." Chico smiled. Ed turned around crossed his arms in authority in front of Chico, "What makes you think youre a great mechanic?" Chico sighed, confessed to Ed, " you see sir, I was a young punk kid when a nice sweet, very generous man, showing me the ropes in his garage". Ed leaned against the work bench still in control towards Chico, "Well what made this young punk of a kid leave the garage?" Chico couldnt bear to face Ed with the facts, "This young punk kid as you call him was too stubborn to face reality with those he worked with and those he loved". Chico looked over to Suzanne and Mando, "Please Ed, I need this job as I really need to find myself right now" Ed looked at Chico, concerned yet confused, "Find yourself? Whats to be found? You have a daughter Chico, someone whom you were involved with still cares for you. Now your interested in my daughter?" Ed stabbed the screw driver on the work bench, "God Chico, I dont like to see my daughter get hurt, especially like this. Youve made a commitment Chico for how long? Now it sounds like your trying to push her aside and go back to Suzanne". Ed grabbed a stool next to him then sat down, "How do you know if Suzanne wants to come back to you?" Chico began to squirm as he was trying to fight the feelings he was having throughout his body. Doubling up in pain his eyes began to tear up from the extreme pain he was experiencing. Chico bent over in pain as Ed rushed over to carefully guide him to the nearest Chair by the table. "Chico, whats wrong? Are you alright?" Ed helped Chico sit down. Chico gripped his leg, "Ed my leg is cramping up with pain". Looking at Ed Chico pleaded about his continuos pain, " Ed, I still keep getting pain. It wont go away". Ed crouched down towards the area of Chicos pain to check him out, "You mean all this time you have been in more pain since the accident?" Chico rocked back and forth trying to fight the pain in his leg, "Yes Ed, I couldnt bear the thought of an expensive hospital bill, so I fought throughout the pain and was able to get released early". Ed placed his hand upon him, "Chico, you could of done more damage to yourself this way!" "Ed, theres more, please dont be upset with me". Ed scooted a chair closer towards Chico, "More, what more could there be?" Ed helped Chico sit on the chair. "Ed I tried taking other meds for the pain but nothing I could get my hands on, didnt help me any. That is why I had Sharon smuggle more of the Oxycondone for me. Ed saddened, didnt understand, "Chico, if you were in such pain then, I would of understood. Please Chico, I know you are an outspoken person. Keeping this from anyone is not like you!

Chico sadly looked up at him, " Ed, when I wanted more of that painkiller. I was afraid you would start thinking bad about me since you were already aware of my addiction from the drug in the hospital". Concerned Ed placed his hand on Chicos shoulder, " Chico I could never think anything bad about you?" Chico lowered his head, "Now that I have a part time job with Della. Shell probably be wondering why I cant work for her now that this injury is acting up" Sadly Chico tried to fight the pain he was experiencing again. Ed wondered why he needed a part job over at Dellas. Chico looked up at Ed, "Ed, I convinced Sharon to get me more of the pain killer by being. You know more me!" Chico smiled big. "Well being more of you Chico, has gotten you in a lot of trouble" Ed said as he watched Chico huddle up shaking. Feeling the pain increase Chico crouched forward, "Ed, it wont go away, it just wont go away!" Chico tried to hide his emotion as the pain progressed. "Ed, I need. I need more. Please call Sharon for me please!" Chico frightened looked to Ed. Sighing Ed couldnt bear the thought of asking Sharon for more of that pain killer, "Chico, we can get through this together with out that stuff" Ed embraced him, "Come on Chico, youre a fighter. You can pull through this!" Ed was frightened as he remembered Chicos withdrawals in the hospital. " I want to let Sharon know about this, but I dont want her to get in any trouble at the hospital".

Heading back to the garage, Mando and Suzanne drove up the entrance till Mando noticed something unusual. "Whats wrong with Chico?" Mando pointed towards his direction as they pulled in. Suzanne got a closer look as she witnessed Ed holding on to Chico, "Looks like Chico is having a withdrawal or is in a serious amount of pain!" Mando stopped the car just as Suzanne quickly opened her door running over to Ed still holding on to Chico. "Chico, are you ok?" Suzanne helped Ed sit Chico down on the old couch beside the work area. "Ed, how long has he been like this?" Ed and Suzanne each sat beside Chico, " Chico has been like this for quite a while Suzanne" Ed began to wipe his eyes. "Chico was concerned about his bill all that time he was there he pretended he was ok when he was in serious pain". Ed concerned over Chico's health became emotional in front of Suzanne. Saddened Suzanne embraced Ed as she witnessed Chicos pain progressing. "Thats explains why he has been having Sharon smuggle the pain killer for him. Suzanne placed her hand upon Chico's forehead as she notice him perspire, "Chico, Im so sorry" Chico ashamed for keeping it from everyone covered his face as he began to rock back and forth. Suzanne leavened over to Ed, " are you going to see Sharon for any help?" Ed looked at Suzanne negatively, "Help as in having Sharon get more of that pain killer?" Embracing Chico, Ed shook his no, "With my help Chico is going through this with out it. Chico looked up at Suzanne, as he became emotional in front of her. Suzanne leaned over towards Chico as she embraced him, "Chico, I had no idea, I want to help you get over this". Chico leaned his head on her shoulder. Suzanne could feel his heavy breathing against her as she continued to hold him. Mando along with Edina and Francisco approached everyone, "Is he going to be alright?" Suzanne released as she held Chicos hand. Looking over to Mando, Suzanne indicated to him to call Sharon. Ed rose up following Mando to his office. "Ed, I think Sharon should know about this. As much as I understand you wanting to help Chico without the medication. Sharon might have find another alternative or at least give him some small does of it". Ed held the phone down as Mando was about to grab the receiver, "I just cant see Chico suffer like this. How can taking more of the drug help him out?" "Ed, I understand, still Sharon should be aware of this". Mando picked up the receiver as Ed reluctantly gave into Mandos suggestion. Mando patiently waited for hospital operator, "Sharon Brown please, yes! This is an emergency" Mando eagerly sat down waiting for Sharon to answer. "Hello, this is Sharon." "Sharon, this is Mando. Im sorry to be calling in these circumstances but Im at your fathers garage here with Ed and Chico". Sharon began to worry, "Is there something wrong with my dad?" Mando looked out of Eds office, "No Sharon, Chico came over asking Ed for his old job back, then he doubled up in pain". Sharon sighed as she hoped this didnt have to happen in front of her father, " Chico has been trying to fight the pain after he successfully fooled everyone at the hospital". Sharon sighed as she confessed to him, " Mando, he couldnt take it anymore which is why he was seeing me to get more of the Oxycondone. Please dont be angry with him Mando. He was trying so hard to alleviate the pain himself. All it did was cause him to be bitter towards himself and to others". Sharon cried as she thought how she helped Chico hide it from everyone.

"Shh, Sharon, its ok. We understand I know you were just doing what you thought was right". Mando pleaded. Sharon wiped her eyes as she settled down, "Mando, Ill be over in fifteen minutes. Please explain to everyone what I said, Ill see what I can do to help". Mando hung up the phone as he explained to Ed and Suzanne what was happening. Suzanne frightened embraced him, "Mando, is he going to be alright?" Mando comforted Suzanne, " I dont know Suzanne. Sharon will be here in fifteen minutes", Mando looked towards Chico as he sighed. Fear was one thing on his mind as he wasnt really sure if Chico was ok. Everyone fussed over Chico till Sharon arrived. Hearing the rush of the car engine, Sharon pulled into the garage. Grabbing her bags Sharon rushed over towards Chico. Looking over Chico, Sharon checked his pupils as Chico began to pass out. Hold the back of his head, Sharon lightly smacked his face as she begged Chico to snap out of it. "Chico, come on! Wake up!" Sharon worried moved over behind Chico. "Dad, Chico is having withdrawals, severe ones Im afraid. This is going to be hard on Chico as well as everyone around him", Sharon brushed Chicos hair back off his eyes. "Dad, this is going to hurt you as well as those close to him. Chico needs to fight these withdrawals on his own now. Anymore of the Oxycondone will just prolong the withdrawals. His body has been immune towards the low doses so much that it isnt helping him anymore". Ed looked over to Chico then to Sharon, "You mean he has to quit could turkey!?" Sharon sighed having to tell her father, "Yes dad, Im afraid that is the best way right now". Rising up she placed her hand on her shoulder, "Dad, Im afraid your in for some trying times ahead". Chico finally settled down as he laid still on the couch. Suzanne placed a blanket over him, checking on him periodically. Wiping his forehead with a cool compress, Suzanne watched as he began to stir. Opening his eyes Chico watched Suzanne brushed his hair back away from his eyes. "What happened? Why am I lying down?" Suzanne leaned over as she embraced him thankful that Chico was now alert, "Chico you had a withdrawal". Chico leaned his head back on her lap as he sighed, "God, I wish I could get over this". Placing her hand upon Chicos slender fingers, Suzanne tried to fight her tears, "Chico, Im afraid going to have to fight this on your own". Chico held her hand, " Im so sorry Suzanne, please dont leave me". Lightly rubbing his fingers against her hand, Suzanne sighed as she relieved her first meeting with Chico in the hospital since the accident. "Chico, as much as I still care for you. I have to accept the fact that you and Sharon are together now". Chico sighed as he looked at Suzanne confused, remembering the conversation he had with Ed concerning. Chico was now caught between two women he loved. Understanding now what Suzanne went through. Chico now had to make a serious decision with his relationships with women. Chico lowered his head as he thought about what Suzanne had been going through earlier regarding him and Mando. Looking over towards Ed, Sharon, and Mando, Chico took in a deep breath and let it out. "Ed, could you be so kind as to have Mando and Sharon with you in your office? I would like to speak with Suzanne alone". As she watched everyone assemble into Eds office, Suzanne feared that Chico was going to agree with her about staying with Sharon. Chico pulled out a chair for her, "Please Suzanne, please sit down". Sitting down beside Suzanne, Chico held her and as he sighed, "Suzanne, Im tried of living a lie towards you and our daughter. You know as well as I, that I have had some trying months lately. I mean Edina's kidnapping, you yourself getting kidnapped during our wedding". Chico looked up as he tried to keep from getting upset. "Then my accident. All this was caused by one person, my friend, mi amigo Mando. I just couldnt understand that he wanted to be a part of this, our relationship". Chico held her hands tighter, "Suzanne, Ive seen you two together and it scares me to think that my life with you is over." Suzanne felt sad as she to felt the same way, "We had some great times together Chico". Leaning towards Suzanne closer Chico carefully whispered to her, "What scares me Suzanne is how Im going to speak to Ed about what Im going to tell you". Suzanne upset wondered what Chico had to tell her, "Are you leaving the garage Chico?" Saddened Suzanne wiped her eyes, "Chico Ed is going to be crushed". Chico nervously brushed his hair back with his hands then looked into Suzannes eyes. "Suz, I want to spend the rest of my life with." Chico sighed as he lowered his head. Raising his head, Chico became emotional in front of Suzanne as he tried to express his true feelings for her "You, SuzannePlease! Your all I think about". Suzanne embraced Chico as he continued to express his feelings for her, "Suzanne, when I found out Ed was near the van when I was involved with Sharon, I freaked out. I knew damn well Ed heard me accidentally say your name when I was intimate with her". Suzanne sighed as she held Chico's hand knowing Chico was really sincere with her. "I understand Chico, I forgive you also". Suzanne looked near the office out of the van window, "Please Chico, please let me be the one to tell Mando". Chico embraced her as they each got out of the van, going back to Eds office.

Opening the office door first Chico gratefully let Suzanne go ahead of him. "Is everything ok?" Ed asked as he watched Chico follow Suzanne inside the office. Sitting down Chico smiled as Suzanne walked over by Eds office door. Sighing, Suzanne walked over towards Mando extended her hand for his, "Mando, may I please speak with you". Mando agreed as he accepted her hand, Suzanne lead Mando out of Eds office. Chico sat next to Ed on his desk, " Ed, Im sorry for what Im about to tell you, but I have to stop living a lie". Chico sighed, debating if a shot of Eds booze would calm him down. Changing his mind Chico confessed to him, "Ed, I still have had feelings for Suzanne. When you caught Sharon and myself messing around in the van. I tried Ed, I really tried to pull it off being with your daughter Sharon," Chico concerned for Eds feelings placed his hand on his shoulder. "Like I said to Suzanne, I got caught up in the moment and my true came out expressing my love for Suzanne". Suzanne led Mando inside the van for more privacy. Looking into Mandos eyes she held his hand as she sighed. "Mando, you have meant so much to me since I have arrived here in East L.A." Suzanne stopped catching her breath as she tried not to get upset in front of Mando, "I have always appreciated your love for me and my children". Tears ran down her eyes as she continued to speak, "Mando, I was too blind not to see how much you cared for me". Suzanne placed her hand on his chin, "Your kindness in offering to help Chico that day to pick me up from work that time", Suzanne wiped her eyes as she remembered Mandos long trip going through the hills instead of straight home". Mando looked at Suzanne concerned as she confessed what she was trying to say. "You mean when I pulled over to the hills over looking the city? I knew right then and there you were special to me Suzanne. I believe you felt the same way too".

Mando sincere placed his hands upon hers. Smiling Suzanne sighed as she tried to fight her tears. "Mando, I realize how much Ive meant to you know, especially after the kidnapping of Edina and myself. I still cant get over the fact that you interrupted the wedding Chico and I had planned, just so you can marry me!" Suzanne smiled trying to keep her emotions from interrupting her. Concerned, Mando looked at her confused, "Suzanne that was all in the past? Are you in any way still angry with me for trying to prove my love for you?" Suzanne worried over Mandos feelings embraced him, " no Mando, I can never be angry with you. Remember, I had fallen in love with you when we were in Vegas". Still embracing Mando, Suzanne lowered her head, as her tears couldnt hold out much longer. "Mando, that is all in the past. I have to go on with my life now, go about my future.

Mando I have forgiven Chico as much as I have forgiven you.". Suzanne sighed, "Mando, I have decided to be with Chico, we, Chico and I were living a lie towards our each denying our love for each other". Mando sat still listing to Suzanne's every word, "Chico was my first love Mando, I can never deny that". Suzanne embraced Mando, "As much as I love Mando I love you also. Chico is a part of my life now". Holding his hand she gently embraced him with a kiss, "Mando you will always be a part of my life that I can never let go".

Chapter 11

Carrying a load of bags Chico arrived back at the garage wondering now that Suzanne was back in his life again. Will he be able to really provide for her and her children? Sighing Chico dropped his duffel bag near the workbench. Sitting down by the workbench, Chico carelessly spun a bolt on the counter as he daydreamed of a better life with Suzanne and her children. Digging into his pockets Chico wished he had the money he longed for. "Geesh," Chico sighed. "I know deep down Suzanne loves me but how can I provide for her and her children with little money I make here at the garage? "

Troubled Chico opened the drawer as he looked around for Ed. Pulling the want ads out of the paper he had stashed in the drawer. Looking throughout the paper Chico stumbled across a few want ads that he circled. A few pages further in the paper Chico had an envelope stashed in between them. Hoping this day never had to arise. The sound of a door slammed shut as Ed made his way downstairs noticing he was approaching closer. With one hand Chico shoved the envelope in his back pocket. Chico then quickly shoved the newspaper back in the drawer smiling nervously "Good morning Ed". Waving nonchalantly Ed greeted Chico back, "Morning Chico".

" How are you this morning Chico? " Ed asked as he slowly made his way down the stairs. Chico sighed. "Oh I'm ok Ed". Chico lightly flung his parts across the work bench table. Ed, concerned, confronted Chico. "Chico what seems to be troubling you? "

Chico sighed, as he didn't want to bother Ed with his troubles. "Ed, I just don't know what Suzanne sees in me? " Facing Ed Chico confronted him with his problem. Ed listened as he straightened up the workbench that Chico messed up. Scratching his head Chico wondering what brought that on in having Ed clean up the work table. Ed shook his head. "Gee Chico, I couldn't tell you? " Ed leaned against the workbench. "I mean she practically knows you more now then I do now? "

Disappointed in Ed's answer Chico crossed his arms. "Cut the crap Ed". Trying to get Chico's attention Ed grabbed Chico's arm dragging him towards the mirror in the rest room. Chico faced the mirror as Ed stood behind him pushing him forward towards the mirror. " Now Chico what do you see? "

Turning his head from side to side, Chico looked in the mirror from different angles. " I see me Ed. . . . Mr. Love-em-and-Leave-em-with-nothing Rodriguez!" Chico said as he lowered his head in disappointment. "Well that's what I've been hearing out on the streets lately".

Ed grasped a hold of Chico's chin raising it up having him look at the mirror. "Chico, so you've had some back luck with relationships in the past. You need to think about the present and the future. You have a girl now who you know who loves you and a daughter".

Chico turned around looking directly at Ed. "Ed that's the problem". Sighing Chico sat down on a stack of tires. "How am I going to provide for her and our daughter with my meager of a salary? " Chico quickly rose off the tires. " Ed no offence. I really love my job here. I'm just afraid I may not be able to support Suzanne, Edina and now Francisco".

Frustrated Chico tossed a towel back in the rest room. "I know Mando has agreed to help Suzanne out if she is needed. But I don't want to feel I am being considered as a charity case"

Ed sighed. " No one here thinks of you and Suzanne as a charity case Chico. I'm sure Mando is willing to help Suzanne out since she freely gave Mando open rights to see his son".

Showing him a letter, Chico placed it upon Ed's hand. "Ed, I have received a letter from my cousin Carlos".

Ed thought about his cousin Carlos? Sighing Ed remember his last letter stating Chico returning back to New York.

Ed feared to look at Chico. " Chico are you thinking of leaving? " Chico sat next to Ed. "Ed, my family has found out about the trouble I've caused here in LA. My father is very disappointed in me to the point he's been making plans on sending me back".

Ed looked at Chico. " Sending you back? What could of you done to have him to think you need to go home? "

"Ed he claims with me having a child out of wedlock and all the crap from the television trial coverage, the press, and finding out about the drug addiction from the accident. My father along with the rest of my family is claiming that I have become a bad seed here and is wanting me back home"

Ed shook his head in disbelief. "Bad seed? Why, you're a grown up adult Chico. " Chico sighed. "Well according to some members of my family they still consider me some sort of a street punk".

"Chico I can reassure you that you are no longer the street punk I used to know". Chico depressed tossed a hand full of nuts on the table. "Try telling that to my family".

Chico lowered his head as he tossed the letter on the workbench. " Apparently since my father is well known in their town. The press back home has had a field day exposing the trial and my accident, that my father now thinks his reputation will falter because of me and Suzanne".

"How am I going to tell Suzanne that I have to leave again to Puerto Rico? " Chico thought about what happened the last time. "Once my family has made up their mind about my well being there's no turning back Ed".

"I'm afraid of what happened the last time Ed? " Chico

"The last time? " Ed asked

"Yeah you know the last time I split to Puerto Rico? " Chico feared.

"Oh yeah" Ed cringed as he remembered . "Chico there should be nothing to worry about now that you and Suzanne have openly expressed your love for each other and to Mando".

Mando and Suzanne pulled up in the garage. " Hola Amigo!" Mando smiled as helped Edina out of the car. Edina ran towards Ed and Chico. " Ah Mi bonita hermana Edina!" Chico smiled as he picked up Edina.

Looking over towards Ed Chico indicated to him to not say anything to them about it the letter.

"Ah how is my little Edina? " Ed asked, smiling. Edina smiled as she always did towards Ed. "Looking Good Papa Ed!"

Ed smiled as he messed with her hair. "That's my girl! A chip off your fathers block!" Suzanne smiled as she walked over carrying Francisco. Mando followed her carrying the last of her things. " Hola Chico! Hello Old folks!"

Suzanne smiled as she hugged Mando good bye. " Remember Mando Your always welcome to see your son. Chico and I can never repay you for all your time, kindness and effort involving my decision".

Mando hugged her as he kissed her cheek. "If there is anything you need or want let me know". Mando continued to embrace her. "Thank you for letting me see my son when ever I want. I'll try not to be in the way of you and Chico".

Suzanne released from Mando. " Mando you could never be in the way. Your the best friend anyone could have. Please don't feel we are avoiding you". Mando released as he kissed her good bye.

Getting into the car Mando waved at Chico as he honked backing out of the garage. Chico embraced Suzanne holding her so close to him. " We are finally together as a family for good!"

Suzanne smiled as she embraced him. Feeling his back she noticed something in his back pocket. Shrugging it off Suzanne and Chico carried each of her children into the apartment.

Suzanne placed Francisco in his playpen as Chico let Edina go heading for her toys. Suzanne noticed Chico was fidgeting. " Chico are you alright? "

Chico sighed dreading to tell the news of his families affairs. " Suz, sit down we need to talk". Suzanne sat next to Chico as he patted the cushion next to him. " Oh God Chico are you having second thoughts about us now? "

Chico sat facing Suzanne holding her hands he reached out of his back pocket showing her the letter he received from Puerto Rico. " Suzanne, I'm afraid I have some bad news". Suzanne placed her hand upon Chico's cheek. " Chico I'm so sorry is someone ill? "

Chico leaned forward, embracing her, not wanting to let her go. "Suzanne my family in Puerto Rico has been informed of my trials lately"

" Trials? " Suzanne questioned Chico. " Yeah Suz, the court coverage the baby out of wedlock and my addiction to the pain medication from the accident".

Suzanne continued to embrace Chico. " Chico that was all in the past. . . " Chico looked directly at Suzanne. "Yes, but according to my family I'm still considered a street punk. . . . " Chico started to breathe heavy as he rested his head upon her shoulder.

Hearing Chico's heavy breathing Suzanne started to feels tears against her shoulder. " Chico what's wrong? "

Lifting his head Chico began to tell her of his families solution of there disapproval towards Chico. "Suzanne my family is requesting that I go back to Puerto Rico".

Suzanne pulled away. " Back to Puerto Rico? Oh God no Chico, isn't there anything you can do to change their mind? " Wiping her eyes Suzanne couldn't face the fact that Chico was going to leave out of her life again.

"Chico I am so sorry I messed up your life. I know your family has expected so much from you and I have to ruin it all for you".

Releasing from her Chico looked into her eyes. " Suzanne, you have done no such thing!". Suzanne turned her head. " "Yes I have Chico, I know deep down you would have became more out of your life I wasn't here. I come into your life and all hell breaks lose!" Suzanne bent forward crying. " I'm sure your family hadn't planned on you becoming a parent so soon and so young"

Chico reached over towards her pulling her up towards him. " Suzanne, what ever my family has planned for me they are just going to have to except my own life". Suzanne looked into his eyes, as she feared her next question. " Chico when do you have to leave? " Chico held her hand. " Suz I have a red eye this evening". Upset Suzanne collapsed into his arms. " This evening! You're leaving tonight? Chico". Suzanne upset cried on Chico's shoulder as Chico sadly embraced her. "Damn it Suz, this hurts me as it does you".

Wiping her eyes Suzanne envisioned a life again without Chico. " How long will you be gone? " Holding her chin Chico lifted it up as he kissed her. " How ever long it takes for me to convince them that I am a responsible adult".

Suzanne cried as Chico released from her. Rising up he dug up a suitcase from the closet. Packing clothes Chico thought of his families sudden concerns for him. "My father is probably furious with me. I know he has given us his blessing when I first proposed to her. Once he hears it from me personally about what has happen with Suzanne since I last left from Puerto Rico he will want to disown me". Chico finished packing as Suzanne got her children ready to leave to the airport. Ed helped Suzanne get her children settled in the car. Shutting the trunk of the car Chico sighed as he took one last look at the garage. " Whether in hell or high water, Father, I'm coming back to this garage". Chico opened the back door sat with Suzanne as Edina sat in the middle. Ed looked over to Francisco.

Arriving to the airport Chico got out as he helped Suzanne assemble her children out of the car. Chico carrying Francisco, Suzanne followed Ed who held Edina. Approaching the gate to Chico's plane they heard the last call for passengers to board the plane. Sighing Suzanne wished this never had to happen. " I can't believe I have to say good bye to you again Chico". Suzanne embraced Chico as there own tears expressed there love for each other. " You'll be with me in spirit along with your children". Chico kissed her Good bye as he reluctantly released from her "I'll write to you as soon as I can". Crouching down Chico leaned over to embrace his daughter. " Edina mi hermana bonita. Yo amo (usted? ? ? )". Chico kissed her cheek brushed her hair back with his long slender fingers. "Daddy hurry back!" Edina hugged her father. Chico sighed, as he had to let go of her. Chico shook hands with Ed then embraced him. "I'll be back sooner then you think old man!" Chico nervously smiled through his tears. Letting go Chico grabbed his duffel bag approaching the check in counter. Receiving his final instructions from the attendant Chico turned around one last time and waved good bye. As the attendant closed the gate doors Suzanne upset embraced Ed as she looked over the observation window. A few minutes went by as the plane began its approach to the runway. Watching out the window Suzanne picked up Edina pointing to the direction of the plane. " There's your daddy Edina" Suzanne tried to fight through her tears. " Bu bye daddy!" Edina said as his plane began to ease it way up in the sky.

Sighing as he looked out the window Chico wondered if he'd ever see Los Angeles again. "You were much of a street punk as I was father" Chico angrily looked out the window near his seat. Thinking of his father's, letter Chico leaned his head back dreading to see his father in his old angry ways again. "I had every right to express my anger towards you Father" Chico thought as he leaned back. "You were never around when I was young then. Why are you punishing me now? " Chico rubbed his eyes as he began to fall asleep.

Hearing a steward announce there approach to Puerto Rico Chico stretched his arms as he began to prepare himself to meet his father. The plane landed as the airport runway signaled Chico's arrival. Dreading the feeling of meeting his father. Chico reached up gathering his duffel bag from the over head compartment.

As the passengers slowly got out of the plane Chico walked through the walk way thingy coming closer to the gate where his father was to meet.

Inside the entrance to the terminal, Chico looked around for his father. Finding his father with his chauffeur Gilberto spotted Chico. "Chico my son, so glad you could make it!" Gilberto embraced Chico as Chico held back. " What? ! No embrace for your father? " Gilberto sternly said. "I didn't think you want to embrace a street punk sir".

Gilberto confused looked at Chico. "No Chico, that's no way to address your own father. " Chico along with Gilberto followed the chauffeur to their car. "Tell me something father, what makes you think I'm still a street punk? "

Gilberto stopped as he looked at Chico concerned. "Chico I have received valuable information regarding your mischievous behavior".

Chico looked back towards Gilberto "Mischievous behavior? "

"Chico I didn't raise you to get a girl pregnant and become addicted to drugs. " Gilberto said. Chico shook his head in disbelief as they entered Gilberto's car. "Addicted to drugs? No! Father that was hospital medication I received from my accident". Chico got a good grip upon Gilberto's coat. "I had no intentions of getting Suzanne pregnant, neither did she. "

Gilberto pulled Chico's hand away from him. "I did not raise a son to become a drug addict and God forbid a father before you are to be married!". Straightening his shirt as he regained his composer Chico angrily pointed at his father. "That's right Gilberto you did not raise me. You did not raise me at all!"

Gilberto angrily took hold of Chico's arms forcing it behind him. "You need to show respect to your elders son". Angrily Gilberto indicated to Chico to get into the car. Chico hopped in the back of the car as Gilberto followed. Closing the door Gilberto's chauffeur locked the passenger door as he got the car started. Gilberto disgusted in Chico's behavior confronted him. "Chico, my son your mother is saddened with what has happened to you lately". Chico upset over being forced by his own father ignored him turning away from him as he looked out of his window. "So, father what is that you have planned for me here? " Turning to his side Chico carelessly slumped lower on the seat of the car. " Why Chico, I'm here to show you the respect that you must earn".

Chico looked up at Gilberto. " Show you respect? Why must you try to run my life? " Gilberto patted Chico's knee. "Never mind that now. We will get you settled in and then I will show you what plans I have of you during your stay".

Still in disbelief that his father has taken him away from his dear friends and daughter, Chico tried to sink in the feeling of never returning back. Chico glanced at the scenery consisting in a sea of orchards of various grapes and fruit covered the path that lead to Gilberto's estate. As the car slowed down making it's way towards the estate. Chico was stunned to see how much activity was being involved in the fields.

Gilberto watched Chico gaze over the countryside. " Chico, my son. I believe I have to perfect idea that help settle our matters here" Chico turned towards Gilberto confused. " Perfect idea? What could that be father? "

Gilberto called the driver to pull over towards several of the workers near the field. "Come with me Chico I want you to meet someone". Gilberto motioned Chico to follow him out of the car. Walking through the thick terrain. Gilberto waited for Chico to catch up. "Chico, this vineyard provides fruit for a majority of Puerto Rico"

Gilberto waved one of the head workers over for him to see Gilberto and Chico. "Chico, I want you to meet Hector he is one of our head foreman here". A tall muscular man approached Chico extending his hand towards his. "Chico, Chico Rodriguez. " Hector pleased to see Chico gripped him tightly. Looking towards Gilberto he expressed his decision. "Yes Mr. Rodriguez, Chico will do fine here out in the fields".

Chico looked confused as he pulled Gilberto aside. "What does he mean out here in the fields? Father, are you putting me out here to work? " Gilberto thanked Hector as he headed back into the fields. "Chico my son, I have decided to have you work out in the fields and have you earn your discipline you so much need earn".

Chico shifted his feet in the dirt as kept his anger from showing in front of the workers around him. "Discipline? " Disgusted Chico took hold of Gilberto's arm leading him away from the crop near him. "Who father? Who was it that insisted I needed discipline? " Gilberto looked sternly into Chico's eyes as he pulled Chico's hand off of his arm. "Mando, Senor Mando, Chico. A letter was rushed to me immediately upon your decision to stay with Suzanne and her children". Chico shocked couldn't believe it. "You mean this was all Mando's idea that you have me sent here? " Chico couldn't believe it. Especially after Suzanne made it clear to Mando that Chico and Suzanne were meant to be together.

"You're punishing me for me falling in love with a girl and having a child?" Chico paced around his father. Gilberto pivoted to Chico's every move. "Chico this girl is not of our decent, and on top of that has a child by you and your amigo Mando out of wedlock!" Gilberto grasped Chico's shoulder stopping his footing. "How could you Chico?" Chico shifted his body releasing Gilberto from him. "How could I what, Father? Fall in love? "

Suzanne and Ed headed back home from the airport. Sighing Suzanne placed her head upon her hand as he leaned against the window. " Ed I just can't figure out why Chico's family could think so bad of him? " Looking towards her children Suzanne watched as they fell fast asleep from the ride home. " If anyone is at fault it should be me". Placing her hand on Ed's, Suzanne felt how sad Ed was of Chico's sudden departure. Ed turned into the garage. "There is nothing we can do now Suzanne. Some how Chico has to prove that to his father". Ed helped Suzanne gather her children as she opened up the apartment. Edina followed her mother as Suzanne came carrying her brother. Ed came inside assisting Suzanne. " If you need me for anything please don't hesitate to call me ok". Ed embraced Suzanne as she sadly let go of Ed. "What ever Chico is going through I'm sure he'll be able to work it out". Ed left the apartment heading upstairs. Suzanne gazed around the apartment feeling a sense of loneliness now that Chico was gone again. " I hope to hear from you soon Mi Amante Borouca". Suzanne thought of Chico's last words to her indicating he'd keep in touch. Edina approached her mother wanting her to read to her. " Edina, let's read your fathers favorite story. " Suzanne picked up Edina as she began to read to her. Reading to Edina seemed to have calmed Edina down as well as Suzanne. Edina hugged her mother as she leaned her head against Suzanne's chest. Falling asleep, Edina then was placed upon her bed. " Someday my daughter your father will be home with us again". Suzanne placed a photo of Edina and Chico next to Edina's bed frame so she could see her daddy when she woke up. A silent knock came upon then apartment door. Curious Suzanne went to see who was at the door. " Who could that be? " Suzanne wondered. Looking through the peephole Suzanne felt relieved.

"Mando?! Please come in". Mando smiled asking for Chico. "Hi Suzy, is Chico around? I came by the garage looking for Chico".

Suzanne tried to keep her cool in front of Mando but failed upon speaking. "Mando, Chico received a letter from his family. Chico's family had requested that Chico be with them because of some personal matters involving him that his family never approved of".

Mando concerned questioned Suzanne. " Personal matters? What could be the cause Suzanne? " Suzanne saddened broke down crying in front of Mando and Edina. Edina grasping Suzanne's leg looked up towards her. " Why you cry mama? " Looking down to Edina Suzanne wiped her eyes. "Edina your daddy had to go away for awhile. Your mommy does not know when he will return". Mando concerned embraced Suzanne. " Suzanne I'm so sorry. Is there anything I can do? " Suzanne embraced Mando as she continued to cry. " Why when we are getting one step ahead something always brings us two steps back? " Suzanne sighed as Mando gently comforted her. Feeling her hair Mando desperately tried not to make a move on her. Embracing her hand Mando lead Suzanne to sit down on the couch. Having Suzanne settle down Mando continued to embrace her. Suzanne felt the light movements upon her back as she eventually settled down. Noticing Mando's comfort Suzanne began to question him. " Mando what are you doing? " Suzanne continued to control her breathing, as she was aware of Mando's approach. "Mando please" Trying to pull back Suzanne struggled as Mando continued to embrace her. "Shhh Suzanne, It'll be ok. Whatever is done with Chico I'm sure we will be ok." Suzanne leaned her head upon Mando's shoulder as she tried to figure out why Chico had to leave.

Images appeared in Suzanne's mind. Her shooting, the kidnapping, the marriage in Vegas, along with Chico's accident. Suzanne began to realize something. Releasing from Mando Suzanne kept her distance from him. "What's wrong Suzanne? " Curiously looking at Mando Suzanne realized something she hoped she never would have to witness again. " Mando, this was your idea all along wasn't it? You contacted Chico's father and had him sent away to Puerto Rico!".

Throughout the days and nights the orchards were busy with workers gathering their crops for the harvest. Gathering fruit barrels filled to the top Chico continually lifted them up loading them in the trucks. Sun beating down upon the workers there bronzed bodies continued to collect the plentiful crop Gilbert regularly had. Resting a bit Chico took a breather as he wiped the sweat off his brow. Stopping his pace he reached over to the water well placing his long slender hands in to collect some water. Field workers who had heard of Chico Rodriguez as Gilberto's son often gave Chico a hard time. Chico rose up after taking a drink of water only to find more wagons of overly stuff barrels for him to load onto the trucks himself.

"Chico, young stallion, your treasure awaits for you!" Two field workers lowered the wagon as the barrels slid down towards Chico. One by one Chico lifted them off the wagon and on to the awaiting trucks. Constant lifting was not only rough on Chico but as days, and evenings went by Chico started to notice a more buffed image in himself while looking into the shadow of him. More and more barrels began to line up as Chico noticed the other workers pushing them forward. "I'm working as fast as I can!" Chico shouted. "Not fast enough Chico!" one of them shouted back. "Your father will be disappointed in you if you don't keep up with the production young man!" Chico angrily headed over towards the workers pushing forward the crops to be loaded. " Stop it! I can only go so fast!" Keeping the production going the other field worker pushed the wagon forward as Chico stopped him. Noticing the commotion that was happening one of the foremen ran over towards Chico and the other worker wondering what was going on. "Why is there no one working? "

Chico turned to the foreman. " Sir, I can only do so much at a time and these men over here are shoving the wagons over to me constantly!" The foreman sighed as he listened to Chico. "Well if you can't keep up with the workers I'll have to inform my boss about your lack of cooperation here in the fields".

"Lack of cooperation? " Chico angrily pushed more barrels in the wagon as he reminded himself that his own father was their boss. "If my father finds out about this he'll never let me go back home". Chico sighed as he gave into the foreman's orders. "Alright I'll try to keep up the best I can". Eventually Chico finally caught up with the other field workers. Keeping up with the rhythm Chico now was ahead of their lead waiting for their shipments. " Come on! Come on vaminos!" Chico sarcastically smacked his hands together to hustle them up. Grabbing the awaiting stock Chico began start packing the wagons again. Completing the day's shipment Chico smacked his hands together in accomplishing the day's task.

"Well done my good amigo!" Chico's foreman greeted him as he happily shook Chico's hand. Smiling Chico returned the gratitude shaking his hand also. Sighing of relief of finally being accepted Chico collapsed near the end of the wagon. Leaning against a stack crates Chico rubbed his sore arms from the day's workout.

Mando confronted Suzanne. "What? How can you think of such a thing? " Suzanne pulled away from Mando. "Can't you see? It's obvious! You can't accept the fact that I have chosen to be with Chico". Mando rushed over to the door blocking her way. "Ok ok Suz, I admit it. " Mando held on to the doorknob keeping Suzanne from leaving. "I planned for Chico to be with his father so I could try to seduce you back to me again". Mando sighed as he regretfully lowered his head. Suzanne watched Mando as he still had a tight hold upon the door handle. Thinking of a diversion Suzanne approached him. "Well Mando I guess you're still not over me huh? " Suzanne embraced Mando holding him close. Mando gave into her embrace as he confessed his feelings. " Suz, I just can't get over you". Breathing heavy Suzanne began to kiss him. " Is this want you want Mando?" Kissing Mando Suzanne felt his embrace among her. Gently guiding Mando opposite of the door Suzanne carefully grasped the doorknob slightly opening it. Releasing Suzanne pushed Mando away going out the door rushing upstairs to Ed's apartment. Pounding ever so hard Ed answered the door. " What! What's wrong?!" Suzanne upset pointed down towards Mando. " Ed there's your answer why Chico is really in Puerto Rico!" Ed looked down towards Mando. "Mando?" Ed shook his head. " Suz, I'll call the airport to see when the next flight will be going".

Suzanne looked towards Mando upset. "Get out! Just get out! Please let Chico and I get on with our lives!"

Ed hurried over to Suzanne. "There's a flight leaving in an hour. If we hurry we can just make it". Suzanne rushed down the stairs in a hurry to pack and get her children ready. Hurrying down the stairs Ed met with Suzanne.

Shortly after Suzanne met Ed with her Children. "Let's hurry Suzanne if we hurry we'll just make that flight!"

Ed rushed over to the airport dodging the traffic any way possible to get to the airport on time. Ed, Suzanne and her Children hurried over to the check in counter. "We would like the next flight to Puerto Rico Please!" Suzanne said out of breath. The attendant checked the flight information. "I'm afraid there is only one seat left available for the next flight out". Suzanne looked at Ed. " Go ahead Suz, we'll take the next flight available tomorrow morning". Suzanne embraced Ed. "Thank you Ed" Suzanne paid the attendant as she received her ticket.

"Gate B-6 leaves in 15 minutes".

Suzanne embraced Ed and her children. " Thank you so much for offering the ticket and keeping an eye my kids". Ed smiled as he embraced her. " Suz anything to get you two back together again". Releasing Suzanne embraced Edina. "Your father and I will be home soon. Be a good girl and mind your brother" Suzanne kissed Edina good-bye as she embraced her son. Hearing the final call from the attendant Suzanne grabbed her carry-on, heading to her gate.

Suzanne settled in her seat thinking how Chico was doing? "I hope he is ok" Looking out her window as the plane reached it elevation Suzanne continued to think of Chico's well being as she began drifting to sleep.

After a long nap Suzanne awoke hearing the pilot inform of his final decent to Puerto Rico. Sighing Suzanne stretched her arms as she gazed upon the island that held Chico. " Mi Deseos del corazon" Suzanne whispered as she gazed at the island upon which Chico now resided. "Now if I could only locate you without getting the both of us in trouble". Suzanne prepared for landing as she noticed the surroundings and it's culture. " Well obviously I'll have to do some shopping to fit in here. Gilberto has never met me so I can possibly try to find a way to work where ever Chico is". Suzanne thought as she rose off her seat getting her carry on bag. Scoping the area Suzanne approached the rental car area getting some source of transportation. As Suzanne checked out of the parking structure her first priority was to find a change clothes to adjust to the lifestyle here in Puerto Rico. Driving around the city Suzanne spotted a boutique. Suzanne was anxious to try on the clothes she had picked. Looking in the full-length mirror Suzanne chose a couple of printed skirts with matching blouses. Sun hats had to mandatory as the sun was constantly blazing upon the land. "Yes, Yes, this will do!" the clerk assisted Suzanne with her purchases. "Gracias!" Suzanne smiled upon receiving her bags of clothing. Suzanne had to ask out of curiosity. "Are you familiar with Gilberto Rodriguez Orchards?" The clerk smiled "Si Si Senorita". Suzanne grabbed a pen and paper out of her bag. " How far away am I from there?" The clerk gladly wrote down the directions to the Orchards handing Suzanne the slip of paper.

Suzanne headed to the direction of Gilberto's as followed in the directions. Moments later a sea of orchards began to cover the scenery. " WOW! " Suzanne amazed to see such fruitful crops grace the area she was approaching. A sign indicated ahead on how far the main entrance was to Gilberto Rodriguez Orchards. " Hmm, Well I just can't pull in the estate and ask for Chico". Looking around Suzanne located a small ditch thinking to where she could hide her vehicle. "This looks like a good place to hide the car. Not to far away from the estate yet a good distance not to be seen". Suzanne got out of her car as she adjusted her outfit. " Now I have to pretend I'm some one in need of a job". Suzanne approached the orchard field carefully as she zigzagged her way around the hustle and bustle of the harvest being produced to the awaiting public. Looking around she desperately tried to find Chico. Walking around she bumped into several workers mentioning Chico's name. " Where is this Chico Rodriguez? " Suzanne asked. "Over there!" The workers pointed to a wagon with several trucks near by. "Gracias!" Suzanne smiled and bowed politely. " De nada!" Both gentlemen tipped their hats towards Suzanne then went on their way. Suzanne hustled over towards the wagon and trucks the two men had spoke about. Looking around Suzanne spotted three very tall muscular men wearing bandanas on their heads to keep the sun off of them. "Where is he, I don't recognize either one of them? " Suzanne sighed as she headed over to ask them if they have seen Chico. The men eagerly lifting the boxes towards the truck had their backs facing her. "Excuse me, I'm looking for a Chico Rodriguez". One of the men turned around. " I'm Chico Rodriguez" Chico looked at her. Surprised and thrilled to see Suzanne he lifted her up. " Suzanne what are you doing here?! "How did you find me? " Suzanne looked down towards Chico tanned face as well as his newly proportioned body. "Chico, I figured out that Mando had something to do with your being here. When you were gone he tried to make a move on me again. That's when I figured it out!" Suzanne hugged him. " I just had to see if you were alright, Chico". Chico lowered her to the ground realizing his father could be watching. "Suzanne, as much as this hurts me. You and I are going to have to lay low away from each other till I figure something out". Chico guided her near a stack of produce. "If my father finds out about this he'll be furious!" Chico embraced her. " Suzanne, my father blames you for all of my troubles my family insists I am having".

Suzanne hugged Chico I'm going back near where all the women workers are. Maybe there is a chance I can stay in the lofts and also work here". Chico questioned her. "Suzanne if my father is aware of you being here God only knows what that man will do!" Suzanne placed her small hand upon Chico's chin feeling the effects not shaving Suzanne felt his whiskers again his warm skin. "Don't you worry Chico If I can pull off being a nun at the hospital I can pull off as a worker here out in the fields". Chico embraced Suzanne, as he was relieved to be with her again. "Please Suzanne. Please be careful. It's a dangerous place out here if you're a stranger". Suzanne released heading back to the lofts where the workers stayed over night if needed.

Walking through the paths leading to the Lofts Suzanne was cornered by one of the women workers. " You need a place to stay?" Suzanne nodded "Si". Leading Suzanne to the rooms available other workers scurried about leaving their lofts. " Here is a place available for you. The only instructions Gilberto requests is that follow the curfew and no men after a certain hour of the night". The lady handed written instructions to Suzanne indicating Gilberto's rules. Suzanne sighed. " Geesh, Gilberto needs to lighten up around here". Suzanne removed her belongs out of her bags and settled in. Feeling the effects from the jet lag Suzanne decided to take a nap to get herself adjusted. Several hours went by as the day turned into night Suzanne lay asleep as the evening brought a relief from the heat as the winds began to pick up. Hearing the rustle of the wind blow into the partly closed window. Suzanne began to toss and turn when tapping sounds began to hit the window. Giving up Suzanne rose out of bed wondering what was hitting against he window. Long sheer drapery clung against the window as Suzanne combed her way through the layers of material. Nearing the window the tapping stopped. Trying to see in the dark of night Suzanne struggled to make out what was tapping against her window pain. Suzanne struggled to open the old heavy window. Opening the side window Suzanne leaned out to see what was the commotion. "Pssst! Psst! Over here!" Suzanne heard still trying to find the voice that she was hearing. Suzanne looked around again only to find Chico rushing out of the bushes. Waving her down Chico looked around to see if anyone was coming. Suzanne nodded as she quickly and quietly closed the doors hurrying out of her room. Chico looked up at her window and all around the loft area. Hearing a quiet squeak Chico watched as Suzanne came running towards him. Chico smiled as he embraced upon as he approached her.

"Chico what are you doing here? " Suzanne looked around for any guards of Gilberto's. "Suz, I just had to see you". Chico having an idea grasped her hand. " Come with me I know a place!" Running Chico and Suzanne ran to where Chico knew of a secret place to be together. Quiet and carefully Suzanne followed Chico's every move. " Over here! " Chico pointed to the direction of there destination. Chico slowed his pace as he turned around facing Suzanne. "I missed you so much Suzanne". Chico smiled as he kissed her. Suzanne embraced him smelling the sweet smell of Hazelnut in the air. Chico looked into her eyes feeling the wind against there hair. Lowering closer to her Chico embraced her chin as he kissed her awaiting lips. Chico released as he sighed. Embracing her Chico still couldn't believe she was here with him. Suzanne placed her arms around him and greeted Chico with a kiss. Chico welcomed her as he navigated her toward the field of hazelnut trees. Lying upon the field Suzanne and Chico embraced each other as their lips welcomed one another. Feeling the rhythm upon her Suzanne grasped hold of Chico's strong arms as the wind moved against them. " It's finally coming together" Suzanne thought as Chico looked into her eyes. " Suzanne mi deseos del corazon". Chico released as he began to control his breathing. Chico leaned back as he lay upon the field next to Suzanne. Closing his eyes he smiled as he felt the comfort he received from Suzanne. Chico kissed her as he slowly opened his eyes. "Ahh! Shhh. . . . " Chico quickly rose up as Suzanne rose with him. Suzanne turned around only to find someone standing in front of them with his arms folded. " Don't let me interrupt you Chico! I take you away from this form of nature to only finding it happen again with another girl!" Chico rose up as he adjusted his clothes. " Father" Suzanne looked at Chico then Gilberto. " Father?!" Chico lifted Suzanne up as he gratefully embraced her. "Suzanne, this is my father Gilberto Rodriguez". Chico looked at Suzanne. " Father this is Suzanne the mother of my daughter Edina Louise". Gilberto ashamed shook his head towards them. "Chico how could you! This is the girl who ruined your life!" Chico kissed Suzanne trying to reassure her, "Pay no attention to him Suzanne". Releasing Chico went up towards Gilberto. " Father this girl whom YOU claimed ruined my life". . . . Chico pointed to his chest. " Suzanne has given me life with her love and affection. She was there all the time when I had my accident". Chico shamefully lowered his face towards the ground yet eyed Suzanne. "She even had faith in me when I told her to leave and stay out of my life for good". Chico embraced her. " Suzanne I can never let you go again. Please. . . . . " Gilberto watched as Chico knelt to the ground before her in front of him. "Please Suzanne, will you marry me!" Chico looked up towards Suzanne as she gratefully accepted his proposal as she kneeled down towards him to embrace him. " Yes Chico I will marry you!"

Gilberto tried to separate Suzanne from Chico. " I forbid such a union to take place between the two of you!" Angrily Gilberto tried to pull Chico away from Suzanne as Chico pushed his father away. Looking back at his father Chico confronted him. " You can't keep on trying to direct my life father". Looking at Suzanne as he grasped her hand. "My life is with my girl Suzanne and my daughter Edina". Chico stared at Gilberto "You may think my life is ruined now that I'm with Suzanne and our daughter. But father with my daughter and my girl as a family my life has just begun". Furiously Gilberto began walking away from them screaming back towards Chico. " If you two should marry under my disapproval I Gilberto Rodriguez will remove you from inheriting my business!"

Chico stood there as Gilberto angrily paced back to his Orchard farm. " Chico, do you really think he'll do it? After all you are family!" Suzanne concerned watched Chico still eyeing his father's journey back to the compound. " I wouldn't be surprised Suzanne, after all my mother always said I inherited my fathers stubbornness". Chico turned to embrace Suzanne as he witnessed her crying. "Suz, why are you upset? " Suzanne wiped her eyes as she looked up towards Chico. " Chico I don't want to cause trouble with your family" Chico sighed as he embraced her. " Suzanne, hold on for a few days till the shock of the proposal blows over". Chico lifted her chin as he kissed her. " I'm sure after a few days of thinking about this Father will come around. " Chico looked up at the night sky hoping for a miracle. " He has to."

Now that Gilberto was aware of Suzanne's presence at the orchard He tried desperately to keep her and his only son separated from each other. Chico ended up having to work more hours loading the trucks as Suzanne was aided to work out in the fields. Fearing what his father had planned on for Suzanne regarding work, Chico asked around during his breaks. Describing Suzanne amongst the workers Chico was worried that Gilberto had her sent away to their other facility near the other side of the island. Asking around Chico wasn't given much hope as other field workers shook their heads in response to his answer. "They either don't know who I'm talking about or Father has threaten to harm them if they mention her whereabouts". Sighing Chico gave up as he headed back to work.

Grabbing the awaiting produce Chico began to load the trucks. Shutting the back door of the truck Chico indicated he couldn't go on till he found Suzanne. "I'm leaving! Take over till I return!" Chico shouted to another worker. Chico hurried over towards several women heading towards the fields. Chico described Suzanne as he hoped for a positive response. " Over there!" All the women pointed to the direction Chico had hoped for. " Gracias!" Chico smiled as he bowed politely towards them. Rushing over to the fields where Suzanne was located Chico often looked back checking for his father. Suzanne was busy harvesting hazelnuts when she was approached from behind. Suzanne gasped as she felt a grip upon her shoulder. "Chico!' Suzanne smiled as she dropped her basket of Hazelnuts spilling them everywhere. Feeling bad that Suzanne spilled her bundle of nuts Chico helped Suzanne pick up all of her hard work. "Geesh Suzanne I'm so sorry. All that hard work all over the place. " Suzanne smiled. "Well at least your here to help me retrieve it all". Chico picked up the last of them. " Suzanne I was thinking beyond the hill over there is a chapel. As the sun rises tomorrow I say we officially proclaim ourselves as husband and wife!" Chico looked unto Suzanne's eyes smiling grasped hold of her basket. Suzanne smiled as she listened to Chico. " Chico you mean it? " Suzanne looked around the field with other workers. "What about your father? " Chico grinned. " Don't worry Suz I have a plan!" Chico explained his idea of how they could get married despite Gilberto's approval.

As the sun began to set upon the land workers scurried about finishing there production for the day. Chico closed up the trucks that were ready to be shipped out in the later part of the evening. Suzanne along with other girls left the fields carrying the last of there daily harvesting. Spotting a rare chance to see Chico till tomorrow morning. Suzanne quickly weaved her way over towards the docks where Chico loaded the trucks. " Ha Venido que usted pertenece a mi corazon " (It has come that you belong to my heart") Suzanne winked and quickly hurried out of the way. Suzanne quietly prepared for tomorrow morning as she carefully got her dress she wanted to wear and her bouquet of wild flowers she had in a vase full of water from the stream behind the mill. Leaning over her bed table Suzanne blew out the candle as she got ready for bed. " Please God please let this finally happen with Chico and I. Help us find a way that Gilberto will understand" Suzanne closed her eyes and drifted off to sleep. Chico quietly gathered his belongings for there early morning celebration. " Padre Purez has offered to officiate the ceremony". Chico lay on his bed thinking of tomorrow morning. " Help us get through this ceremony without any trouble from my father". Chico sighed as he drifted off to sleep.

Chico woke up about early. Looking at his watch he realized he had about a hour or so till sunrise. Rising out of bed Chico quietly got ready as he used a small hurricane lantern to use as a source of light so he wouldn't disturb the other workers sleeping the quarters adjacent to him. Gathering his clothes Chico got dressed as he thought about the ceremony. Working in the fields Chico came across the old chapel meeting with Padre Purez when he needed a place to rest after the harassing he received from the workers when he first arrived there. Chico quietly left his loft heading over towards the chapel. "I hope Suzanne can make it out here with any trouble" Chico kept his watch as he continued his trek upon the hill leading to the chapel.

Arriving to the chapel Chico opened the doors only to find lighted candles every where. Suzanne waited at her side holding her wild flowers she picked the day before. Chico walked forward embracing her hand. "I can't believe it Suz'. We're finally going to be married!" Chico smiled as he squeezed her hand. Suzanne smiled wiping her eyes from the emotion of finally being able to be married.

Padre Purez motioned Chico and Suzanne to come together hand in hand.

"Estamos presentes antes del Senor" (We are present before the Lord). " En la celebracion de la union de Francisco y de Suzanne (in celebration of the marriage of Francisco and Suzanne)

Padre Purez looked around Suzanne and Chico as he gazed behind them. "Si los present aqui se sienteb que Suzanne y Chico no deben casar. Ahora o lleve a cabo por siempre su paz". (If those present here feel that Suzanne and Francsico should not marry. Speak now or forever hold their peace").

Silence filled the air as Chico and Suzanne stood in front of the altar facing Padre Purez. A light began to shine as the doors to the chapel quietly opened up. Chico nervously wiped his forehead. " Por que? Por que ahora Dios? " (Why, Why now God?).

Quietly the steps continued as the glare of the sun impaired their vision to reveal it's presence.

Sounds of the steps finally approached Chico and Suzanne as their visitor was revealed. " Father! What are you doing here? " Chico nervously said. Gilberto dressed to his finest placed his hand upon Chico's. " I realize now your love for Suzanne Chico. As I recall I did the same thing with your mother when her family had issues with me". Gilberto looked towards Suzanne. " You see Suzanne Chico here wasn't the only one with a reckless heart and soul. I'm afraid he has inherited his fathers will and stubbornness. For that I am grateful". Gilberto placed his hand upon Chico's. " You have made your papa proud Francisco" Gilberto placed his hand upon Suzanne's as he placed hers upon Chico's. " All though Padre I have to confess I can not let this continue". Chico looked at his father "Why" Gilberto rose his hand above Chico and stopped him. "You see Padre, this wedding can not take place without the people that mean most to Francisco and Suzanne". Chico and Suzanne looked at each other curiously. Gilberto turned towards the partly opened door announcing. "Venga por favor adentro rapidamente! " (Come please inside quickly!)

Chico still holding Suzanne's hand looked back towards the door as Suzanne did the same. The door swung wide open Edina ran inside rushing towards her daddy as Ed carrying Francisco followed. Suzanne, full of emotion, knelt down to embrace her daughter as Chico knelt down also. Ed walked towards the three of them as he carried Francisco. Chico looked up towards Ed as he rose to embrace him. " I can't believe your here!" Chico smiled. Gilberto placed his hand upon Chico. " Now that your family is all assembled together let us continue with this celebration".

Chico and Suzanne stood facing Padre Purez as Ed and Gilberto stood next to him. Ed carried Franciso as Gilberto took hold of Edina's hand. Edina looked up at Gilberto as she smiled. " Papa? "

Gilberto smiled as he rubbed her chin. "Si Edina, I am your Papa Gilberto" Smiling Gilberto looked at Ed. " Just as he is your Papa Ed". Padre Purez looked at Ed and Suzanne. "Quien da a esta novia lejos? " (Who gives this bride away? ) Suzanne looked at Ed as Ed took hold of her arm stepping forward. " I do" Ed smiled as he kissed Suzanne on the cheek. Padre Purez motioned that Suzanne and Chico face each other as they gave each other their vows.

"Suzanne usted toma Francisco para ser su wedded legala marido? "(Suzanne do you take Francisco to be your lawfully wedded husband? )

"Tienen que asimiento, para mas rico o mas pobre en enfermedad y en salud a partir de este dia remir? "(To have, to hold for richer or poorer in sickness and in health from this day forward? )

"Si respnda tan con mi "(If so respond with I do)

Suzanne looked into Chico's eyes as she declared her love for him. " Si mi amante" (Yes, my love)

" Francisco usted toma a Suzanne para ser su wedded legal a esposa? " (Francisco do you take Suzanne to be your lawfully wedded wife? )

" Tienen que asimiento, para mas o mas pobre en enfermeded y en salud a partir de este dia remir? " (To have to hold, for richer or poorer in sickness and in health from this day forward? )

" Si responda tan con mi" (If so respond with I do)

Chico looked into Suzannes eyes grasping her hand smiled as he tried to keep from getting emotional in front of everyone. " Si mi amante" (Yes my love)

Padre Purez handed each Suzanne and Chico their rings. " Amante que une uno "( Loving that unites one ).

"Unamos como uno en dar e intercambiar de anillos. " (Let us unite in giving and interchanging of ring)

" Francisco lugar el anillo sombre el dedo de Suzannes". (Francisco place the ring on the finger of Suzanne's. )

Padre Purez motioned to Suzanne to do the same. " Suzanne lugar el anillo sombre el dedo de Franciscos". (Suzanne place the ring in the finger of Franciscos)

Padre Purez looked upon Suzanne, Chico as well as Edward and Gilberto. Rejoicing lifting his hands upon Suzanne and Chico he declared their dedication.

" Ahora que alli amante se ha declarado sobre nuestro senor y salvador Jesus y a los presentes". (Now that there love has declared on our senor and rescuer Jesus and to the presents. )

"Yo ahora anuncio usted es marido y esposa" . (I now announce you are husband and wife)

Padre smiled as he faced Chico. " Francisco usted ahora besar a su novia!" (Francisco you now to kiss it's bride!)

Upon Padres request Chico gently placed his long slender fingers upon Suzanne's chin as he slowly approached her. Kissing her passionately Chico and Suzanne were finally together as one. Releasing together they laughed till they cried. " I can't believe it! We are finally married!" Chico smiled as he embraced. Together Ed holding Edina's hand and Gilberto carrying Francisco walked up to congratulate them.

" Congratulations Chico, Suzanne, you make a wonderful couple" Ed smiled as he embraced Suzanne then Chico. Gilberto happily walked forward after Eds greeting. " Felicitaciones mi hijo e hija en ley!" (Congratulations my son and daughter in law!) Gilberto happily embraced Chico then embraced Suzanne as he kissed her cheek. Upon releasing from Suzanne, Ed approached Chico and Suzanne again. "I have a letter from Mando I think you two should read". Ed handed the envelope to Chico as Suzanne looked on.

Sighing he remembered the last letter he received from him about the kidnapping. Chico read the telegram as Suzanne looked on.

" Dear Chico and Suzanne,

I am forever grateful upon hearing of your recent contact with each other. As you know I had tried to achieve another chance with Suzanne. When Suzanne had discovered my recent attempt to have her, I knew right then and there it was over for good. I have asked God for forgiveness upon my actions and hope you will do the same. Chico, mi amigo. We've been through a lot together. Have a blessed and wonderful life with Suzanne she is a sweet girl.

Suzanne, enjoy the love you have so much with Chico you two were truly made for each other. As I have tried several times to be apart of your life. I now understand what God truly has for you two. I hope you two will spend eternity together as I hope my recent actions have not effected my chances to see my son."

-Mando

Chico closed the telegram. " Gracias mi amigo. Se perdona todo" (Thank you my friend, all is forgiven)

Gilberto and Ed had a discussion as what they would do with there children. "We will kindly watch your children as you embark upon you first night together as husband and wife". Gilberto embraced both Chico and Suzanne as he happily escorted them out of the chapel. " Chico and Suzanne were excited as they were eagerly escorted by his father. Glancing back at his father Chico couldn't get over his fathers' sudden actions. Opening the doors a carriage awaited for Chico and Suzanne. Dressed up with wild flowers and ribbons a driver opened their door. Helping Suzanne and Chico in the carriage Chico spoke to the driver upon where he'd like to go. Embracing each other as they rode upon the field Chico and Suzanne expressed their love for each other.

The carriage made an abrupt stop as Chico peaked out for a view smiling they had reached there destination. Chico rose as the door awaiting them opened up. Chico extended his hand to Suzanne for his invitation. Chico carefully helped Suzanne out as she witnessed the field that Gilberto first caught the two of them together. Smiling Chico escorted Suzanne near the forest of hazelnut trees she so admired. There among the forest awaited a basket from The Rodriguez family. Chico and Suzanne walked towards the basket as each of them knelt down. Opening the card that was placed upon the basket Chico read the note. " To Francisco and Suzanne, Signed Gilberto Rodriguez and Family". Chico opened the basket to find fine linens and a prepared meal for them.

"Suzanne this is for you" Chico handed her a gift from the family. " Chico, did you know about this? " Suzanne smiled. Chico grinned. " It's possible". Sighing Suzanne kissed him as she opened her gift. Gasping Suzanne smiled. " Chico!" Suzanne held up the satin gown as she winked at him. "Do you like it Suz? " Chico grinned shyly asked. Using her index finger Suzanne indicated to Chico to help her put on the garment. Carefully yet seductively Chico placed each garment upon Suzanne. Eagerly Chico embraced her kissing her passionately. Supporting her Chico gracefully lay Suzanne upon the assorted blankets. Intimately Chico and Suzanne embraced as each tender moment rose upon them. Throughout the night they each express their love for one another as their awaiting kiss embarked upon a love that will last forever.

Throughout the night Chico and Suzanne shared there love for each other. As the sun light signified a new beginning. Chico and Suzanne woke up with a shadow from there past. Looking over the glare of the sun that impaired the figure before them. Suzanne witnessed one love from her past that seemed to haunt her till this day

Chapter 12 - Epilogue

Chico and Suzanne rose as they witnessed the figure in front of them. Breezes flowed upon them as the wind caused the leaves on the trees to expose the bright sun light over them. Impairing their vision from the gleaming sunlight. Chico embracing Suzanne leaned forward blocking the glare from the sun with his hand. Covering his eyes Chico tried desperately to see who was witnessing their intimacy after their long awaited wedding took place. "Who's there?" Chico asked as he fought through brightness against his eyes. The figure before them dropped to their knees. Suzanne, frightened, hid behind Chico. "What are you doing here?" Asked the figure before them. Chico looked down after hearing the figure fall to the ground. " My girl who now is my wife and I were just married as of yesterday, We are spending time alone together courtesy of my father Gilberto Rodriguez" Closer the figure approached Chico exposing his appearance. "Gilberto? He actually went through with it?" Chico backed off realizing who was witnessing them together." Wait a minute? What are you doing here?" Chico asked still blocking Suzanne from their visitor. Approaching closer towards Chico, the figure before them pleaded his case. "I know I asked for forgiveness between the two of you". Leaning his head down in sadness he pleaded for Suzanne's mercy. "Yet my heart is still struggling for you Suzanne." Suzanne, confused, looked at the figure from behind Chico. " Mando?" Leaning over Chico's back surprised to see Mando. Suzanne nervously brushed her hair away from her forehead. Reaching out his hand towards her, Mando patiently waited for hers. Suzanne extended hers grasping his out of sincerity. Chico in the middle of them just couldn't understand why Mando was here, here with them, here with her. " Mando, my amigo. Please understand that we are in love. Suzanne and I are united as one now". Chico looked at Suzanne sensing Mando's affection affecting her again. "Oh no, God not now, not here!" Chico sighed, as he felt suddenly abandoned. Embracing Suzanne Chico held her expressing his love for her." Suz, I love you, please you have to let it go". Suzanne embracing Chico placed her head upon his bare shoulder. Sighing