In Mexico they kill policemen to discourage the rule of law.

 

Chihuahua, Mexico

 

          I walked down the streets taking it all in: the open air stores, the bars, army patrols on the streets… a beggar playing a guitar. Construction business in Chihuahua was booming and gated communities were coming up fast to support an ever increasing population.

          The building I was gunning for stood detached from the rest with a single black police jeep sitting in the parking lot. At the reception, I signed my name and waited patiently to be called.

          “Señor, the Chief of Police will see you now,” an officer told me in Spanish a while later.

          “Gracious.” I thanked her and walked into the humid office.

She looked like a little girl although I knew that she was 20 years old. She saw me and stood up with an outstretched hand. “Welcome and nice to meet you. You can call me Esmeralda.”

          “Nice to meet you too Esmeralda,” I replied as we shook hands.

          “My name is Pablo.”

          “Pablo who?”

          “Pablo Rodriguez.” I knew that she would have me checked out but I wasn’t worried about that.

She was only 20 years old; the youngest Chief of Police who had overnight become a world sensation. The papers had called her the bravest woman in the world. To me, she looked like a child.

          “You say my brother in America sent you,”
she asked as she took off her blue cop hat and brushed her long black hair away from her face.

          “Oh yes.” I dug into my pocket and came up with a white envelope. “He told me to give you this.”

          I watched her eyes glow as she counted the money. “He always spoiled me as a child,” she exclaimed. And then suddenly threw her hands up in frustration. “Somebody make that beggar go away, gosh!”

          I craned my neck and heard the melodious tune of a guitar. The beggar’s skills were too good for my liking.

          “Why don’t you make him go away?” I asked. “You are the police aren’t you?”

          She smiled. “I have a bad conscience. I will feel bad afterwards.”

          I half rose from my chair and bowed. “Then allow me to,” I said.

          The Chief of police looked up startled. “You are not going out there are you?”

          I laughed, picked up the phone and dialed 911.

          “Halo!” the voice on the other side said.

          “There’s a beggar outside my office that’s disturbing the peace. We need him to go away.
Can you send a car over to pick him up?” I replaced the receiver and sat down quietly.

          The Chief of police looked at me with curiosity. “That was it?” she asked. “You are
calling 911 from a police station? That’s the most ridiculous thing I have seen in a while.”

          I raised a finger at her. “Patience,” I said. “Wait for it. Anytime now.”

          We sat in silence staring at each other, the only sound being that from the beggar’s guitar. But suddenly, the music stopped. The Chief of Police ran over to the window and looked outside in time to see the beggar scurrying down the
streets.

          “How did you do that?” She turned around, her gaze sharp on me.

          “Your phones are bugged señora. The cartels are watching you.”

          “Why would the cartels be watching me? I’m no threat to them. My police station has only thirteen cops with nine of them being women. How am I a threat to the cartel army?” Pause. “All I have done since I took the job is try and improve
the community.”

          I quickly cut in. “That’s the point right there,” I said. She sounded so naive. “A good community kills the market for the drug dealers and they don’t want that. Anarchy is good for business. Also you are very popular in the western
world and they want to use you to set an example. The rival drug cartels have been fighting to control the drug routes into the
United States for years. Be it the Juarez or the Sinaloa Cartel, whoever gets their hands on you will become famous.”

Trepidation crowded her eyes and I felt sorry for her. She studied my solemn face with a lot of interest. Her eyes dropped down to my black jacket and pants, and then ran up to the white shirt I wore underneath. I did not check out.

“Who are you Pablo?” she asked. She was
looking at my long silky pony tail that fell slightly below my shoulders. I stood up and put on my dark sunglasses.

          “Like I said señora, I’m a friend of your
brother. He sends his love from
Oklahoma.”

 

 

          The night was dark and humid as I walked through the streets of Chihuahua. The night
temperatures were known to sometimes exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit and I was accustomed to the sweat dripping down my face. Now, there are only two kinds of people who walk at night in
Chihuahua: the cartels and the army patrols. And then there was me. The policemen were nowhere
to be seen.

          Her apartment was located on the outskirts of the city on a single storey building. I climbed up the dark narrow stairs and checked the time again. 2 AM. It was a perfect time to kill. With two pins, I picked her front lock and slid the door open. Living room. I moved around the couch and headed for the bedroom.

          She was curled up in bed asleep, the sound of her soft breathing filling the air. My eyes swept the room and picked out the single photograph on the end table and I moved to take a closer look. She looked happy with someone who looked like her dad. The photograph was approximately five years old, her daddy probably long gone. I set down the framed picture and turned back to the task at hand. The gun in my right hand moved up slowly until the muzzle pointed at her head. I had done this a thousand times: two bullets to each side of the head and the job would be done. But this was different; I had never killed a young girl before. The gun trembled in my grasp and I lowered it down.

          She moaned and I took a step back.

          “Who’s there?” she asked in a sleepy voice. And then, “halo, who’s there?” She sounded scared as she reached for the gun under the pillow.

          “You looking for this?” I asked and she whirled in my direction.

          “Pablo?” she exclaimed in shock and quickly sat up. Her right hand instantly reached for the reading light and my voice rose in a stern warning. “Don’t!”

          Her hand jerked back like she had been bitten by a snake.

          “Dress up quickly! We need to go!” I said as I threw her a gray jumper and the pair of
black jeans lying on the carpet.

          “What’s going on Pablo?” She started dressing up. She was a cop by nature and thus took little time to adjust to the situation. “Why are you in my apartment?”

          “There are people who want you dead.” I handed back her gun.

          A light through the window caught my attention and something told me to duck. I dove onto the bed and simultaneously yelled at her. “Down Esmeralda, down!” Bullets shattered the window and broken glass flew into the room.

          I grabbed her hand and pulled her on a crawl away from the kill zone. “You have to follow me Esmeralda. People want you dead!”

          “Why?” she asked innocently.

          “Because you are the Chief of Police! We have to go!”

          We crawled to the front door and she looked at me disapprovingly.

          “We can’t use the back door,” I explained. I had judged the direction of fire through the bedroom shots. The front door was our only chance. “There’s only one shooter at the moment, but the ‘clean up crew’ will arrive shortly.”

          “How do you know?”

          “I just do. Run!”

          We dashed into the open street and hugged the walls on a sprint. I led Esmeralda through a club and a few bars, emerging through the back doors to shake off any pursuers. I hated having her with me. I hated the responsibility of holding
someone else’s life in my own. We zigzagged and crossed as many streets and alleys as we could in one hour, before I pushed her up a fire escape to the top of a short brick building.

          “Why are we stopping? We should keep moving,” Esmeralda said as she gasped for breath.

          “Shhhh.” I placed a hand softly on her shoulder.

We lay flat on the roof top and watched the dark streets below. Exactly a minute later, a
Mexican burly of a man burst out from an alley swirling a rifle in an arc. I heard Esmeralda gasp. The man in a black riding jacket walked right below where we were and looked around puzzled. It was time to make my move.

I jumped into the air, fist first into his face. He groaned, rolled on the ground and quickly
turned to face me. I could tell that he was a professional by the way he quickly recovered from the surprise attack. His rifle was on the ground but he didn’t bother to retrieve it. We circled and sized each other up. I was slightly taller and a knife appeared in the man’s right hand when he realized
this.

Adrenaline spiked, I quickly took off my shirt and wound it around my right wrist. The knife came towards me fast. I stepped to the right and counter attacked: my wrapped wrist pushing the knife aside, my left fist landing a mean hook to his jaw. The man stumbled backwards and this time I didn’t wait for him to recover. I followed him with a second blow and backed him against a wall. He tried to dive under my arms but I grabbed his head and smashed it against the brick wall. His
dilated eyes stared at me in shock. Death was instant and the night quickly fell silent. I checked his pockets: no ID, no wallet, no phone. No surprise there.

          “We have to move!” I told Esmeralda as I helped her down. She looked shaken by the sight of the dead man.

“Are you shy?” I asked.

          “What?”

          “Your clothes are bugged. You have to take them off. That’s how he found us so quickly.”

          She understood, proceeded to take off her jumper, blouse and jeans. I stared at her perfectly tuned body and didn’t bother hide my excitement. My breath caught in my throat when I saw the tattoo on the top part of her breast.

          “Are you having fun?” she asked as she hugged herself in the cold.

          “Actually I am,” I replied as I handed her my shirt. “My house is half an hour drive from
here. We should be safe there. Nobody knows where I live.”

          I broke the driver’s window of a nearby Toyota and unlocked the door. I connected the starter wires and hotwired the car as Esmeralda jumped into the passenger’s seat. The car fired up and we roared away from the prying night eyes. Twenty minutes later, we were looking at the Chihuahua’s city lights on the rearview mirror of the car.

          “You don’t live in the city?” She asked in surprise.

          “Nope.”

          I swerved off the road half an hour later and stopped the car in front of a black gate. I swiped a card and the gates swung open to reveal a long narrow stretch of road leading through what looked like a golf course. The grass was closely trimmed and Esmeralda held back her words as she ate up the view. Along the way we passed by two huge houses and a clubhouse before arriving outside my house. Esmeralda whistled and I quickly followed her gaze.

          In front of us sat a Tudor styled bungalow. I had to admit that the one and a half storey residential building looked glamorous under the rising morning sunlight. I hit the remote and a garage door opened to reveal two new cars: an Audi and a Jaguar.

          “You live here?” Esmeralda asked in disbelief.     

          “Why? I don’t fit the picture?”

          “No. I mean…” she stopped herself.

         I smiled jokingly and said, “Tax payer’s money at work.”

          “You work for the government?”

          I didn’t reply.

          We parked the car in the garage and followed the veranda towards a side door where
I reached in and turned off the alarm system. It was under the bright kitchen lights that she saw the blood dripping down my chest.

          “Your shoulder is bleeding Pablo. He must have gotten you with the knife. Let me take
a look at that.”

          “It’s nothing, “I protested.

She ignored me and spun my torso around.

          “I have to clean it out before you get tetanus infection.” She found her way into my bathroom and came back with a bandage, antiseptic and some painkillers from the medicine cabinet.

          “You have so many scars on your body,” she said as she inspected the wound. My years on the street were grafted on my body.

          “I get around a lot.” I winced as antiseptic touched my wound.

          “At least you are human,” she said at the sound of my pain. I politely rejected the
painkillers and explained my need to stay alert.

         After a quiet moment, she sat back with a look of satisfaction at her work. “Pablo, do you know how the Chinese won their wars?”

          “No idea,” I replied wondering what she was talking about.

          She smiled. “The Chinese didn’t have enough rifles, so they lined up the soldiers with rifles in front and the ones without behind them. One soldier falls down; another one takes up his place.”

          I chuckled. “It’s genius.” I wondered what her point was but she didn’t bother to elaborate.

          “You like guitars?” she asked as she pointed at the guitars hanging on the wall.

          “I have one in every room,” I replied. “My father used to play to me as a child.”

          “Can you play?” She walked over and touched the one above the kitchen counter.

          “A little,” I replied, “maybe when my shoulder gets better.” Pause. “Why Esmeralda?”

          “Ha, what do you mean?”

          “Why Chief of Police?”

          She shrugged. “I’m a criminal Justice student. The opportunity came and I took it. In school we studied the nature, causes and control of criminal behavior in individuals and society and that stuff really got to me.” She looked pensive
for a moment. “I never wanted to be the kind of girl who sits in an office and writes research papers that nobody ever reads. I wanted to make a difference in life. Something tangible: something visible and rewarding.” Silence. “From the moment I took office, I preached time and again that the best way to solve conflict is through community improvements and not through arms. I never
carried a gun to emphasize my point.”

          “It doesn’t work like that in Mexico,” I said.
“Did you get phone threats?”

          “Yes,” she said as she turned to look at me. “How did you know that?” She walked back and sat down. “Who are you Pablo, really? I watched you killing that man back there. You were cool and collected and you handled yourself pretty well. I
checked you out after you left my office and came up with nothing.”

          I took another look at her as I tried to decide on how much to tell her. We relocated to the living room and sat on the carpet in front of the fireplace. Neither of us was hungry. Food was the last thing on our minds.

“My name is Pablo,” I begun. “There was a time and place when I lived a normal life although it feels like ages ago. My wife used to run a shop in Juarez and the little money that we made we used to take our little girl to school.” My eyes were distant as I remembered. And then they turned teary. “I came home one day and my wife and kid’s heads were sitting on spikes outside the front door.”

Esmeralda gasped. “What! That’s awful. Who killed them?” But she already knew.

          “The cartel.” My voice turned cold with anger. “They wanted to control the business
industry and all shops were supposed to pay taxes to the drug lords.”

          “Taxes on top of government taxes?”

          “Yes. And that was not enough. They wanted to use these businesses to distribute drugs to the youth in Juarez.”

          “Your wife said no?”

          “Yes.” I sniffed back the tears that threatened to fall. I had been crying for years
over the loss of my family and my heart was broken.

          “That’s horrible!” Esmeralda looked appalled.

          I continued. “I moved to America soon
afterwards and joined the CIA.”

          She looked up in surprise. “You are CIA?”

          “Yes Esmeralda. Your brother did not send me. I have never met your brother. The American
government sent me to get you out. We knew that they were going to kill you and the world does not need the death of a 20 year old girl on its conscience.”

          She looked thoughtful. I reached for the fireplace remote and turned up the flames. I wondered what she was thinking about. And then suddenly, she hugged me.

          “I’m sorry about your wife and kid Pablo, but thank you for saving my life.” And before I knew what was happening, she kissed me softly on the mouth.

          “Wh..at are you doing?” I asked in confusion. I was ten years older than her and
although the thought of sex had already crossed my mind, I would never try to take advantage of her.

          “Shhhh,” she said as she put a finger to my lips. “I don’t do this very often Pablo, so don’t blow it with a pep talk.”

          I tried again. “I’m not a good guy Esmeralda.”

          “Nonsense. My dad told me that even the most damaged heart can be mended. You were pushed into this life; you were not born into it.”

          She kissed me again then pulled back. “Pablo?” she called. “Promise me something.”

          “What’s that?” My head was spinning. The warmth of her kiss burned through my body like
a fever.

          “If anything happens to me…”

          I did not let her finish the sentence. I did not want her to. I grabbed and kissed her hard on her lips. She moaned and I felt aroused. I knew the logic behind what was happening. People who suffered near death experiences usually felt drawn to each other. It was moments like this that made the pain bearable. I hadn’t been with another woman since my wife. But then again, I hadn’t felt
such a stirring in my heart for years. My insides felt like they would explode.

I picked her up and carried her to the bedroom where the clothes landed on every corner
of the floor. She was soft to touch and eager to please. I could tell that she didn’t have much experience with sex. Her moans and groans came too loud and made me want her more. I couldn’t remember the last time I had made love to
someone three times in one night. It was her I had been waiting for all these years.

          Afterwards we lay on the bed and caught our breath. A sob escaped from her and I turned in time to see the tears streaming down her face. 
I pulled her into my arms and rubbed my right hand over her back.

          “Now, now, don’t cry my dear. Everything will be okay.” But she only cried harder. I
untangled myself from her, went into the kitchen and poured a double shot vodka into a glass. I grabbed a can of coke and walked back into the bedroom.

          “Bottoms up,” I said and handed her the glass.

          She sobbed and quietly obeyed. The vodka burned her throat and she jumped out of bed clutching at her chest. “What is that?”

          “Here, drink this. It will help.” I handed her the soda and watched her down it.

          “Better?”

          “Yes.”

          “So why were you crying.”

          She looked embarrassed. “I cry when am happy,” she said. “I have been waiting all my life to feel like this.” Her words were a paradox from the mouth of someone whose life was in danger.

My eyes opened at exactly 12 noon and I saw her hunched over the computer wearing one of my white robes. It took a while to remember all that had happened and register the implications of what she was doing. But when I did, my feet hit the carpet on a sprint. I reached the computer and yanked the power code from the wall.

          “What are you doing?” I yelled at her in an angry voice.

          She looked frightened. “I was just checking my Face Book account?”

          “You what?” I couldn’t believe my ears. It reminded me of how young she was. “The most dangerous drug lords in the world are looking to kill you and you are on Face Book chatting with your friends?”

          She opened her mouth but I quickly hushed her. “Sshh…!” I covered her mouth briefly then pulled my hand back. We sat very still and listened as the distant roar of an engine drew near. I cursed and threw her jeans at her. “They are here! Get dressed!”

          There was no time for strategy. I slipped into my jeans and grabbed the .45 from under
my pillow. Suddenly, the windows shattered as a hail of bullets poured through the drywall and windows. I grabbed Esmeralda and pushed her to the floor. Wood splinters and broken glasses flew over our heads but I knew that we had to keep
moving no matter what. We crawled towards the bedroom door with Esmeralda crying out from every cut of glass that she received. The machine gun fire stopped and a thunderous banging noise cut through the house as the front door was blown open. They were inside!

          “This way!” I said as I led Esmeralda towards the basement stairs.

          “But the garage is on the other side?” She pointed out. I did not bother to explain. We cleared two rooms of shredded furniture before descending the stairs.

          Inside the basement, I opened a wooden hatch on the floor and pushed her down a steep
fall. “Use the rings on the wall to climb down!” I told her.

I had spent years designing the place for this very reason. And now finally, I would get a chance to see if it worked. The living and dining room floor above shook to the sound of pounding boots. Soon they would realize that we were not there and they would come looking in the basement. I pressed a switch and the hatch closed above me. It would take them a while to find the hatch because it blended well with the rest of the décor.

“We only have one minute!” I yelled at her. “Move fast!”

“One minute before what?”

“Before the house explodes. The guitars are loaded with explosives.”

Esmeralda almost missed a step as she clambered down the rings. At the bottom of the hole, we monkey crawled our way through muddy ground until we reached an underground river where we were able to walk waist deep in the water.

“How far?” She asked.

“Keep walking.” We switched places and I led the way. Right before we reached the exit, the tunnel branched into two and I led her through the left fork into an upward climb. The other fork would only lead us to a waterfall which was not a
very fun exit. One minute was up.

“Brace yourself!” I yelled and pulled her down beside me. The explosion came louder than I had anticipated and the tunnel behind us collapsed. We sat tense and waited for a few minutes.

Twenty minutes later, we climbed out of the rabbit hole into a forest. “Follow me!” I yelled and started running.

The farmhouse was a mile away through the trees. I had staked it out for years and knew every inch of the land. An old couple lived there; their kids had moved out a long time ago and only visited on Christmas. They owned a tractor, a
forklift, an old Datsun car that hadn’t moved in years.

We ran into the stables and I quickly saddled a black stallion. I knew his name, and had ridden him a few times while the couple slept. The horse neighed softly in recognition and I helped Esmeralda mount behind me. We rode like the wind as the cool forest breeze brushed softly across our faces.

 

Juarez Cemetery, Mexico

 

We sat with our backs against a tombstone and breathed heavily. I wanted the horse to rest before we could continue. It was evening but the sun was still hot above us. A cemetery was a gloomy reminder of the fate that awaited us, if we were lucky.

“How do you think he died?” Esmeralda asked.

I turned and read the name on the tombstone. Hernandez Juan. Date of death June 2012. I shrugged. “I don’t know, maybe a car
accident?”

Esmeralda shook her head. “That’s boring.” She sat up. “I think he was a decorated soldier. Died fighting for his country and saved many lives.”

I smiled. “I like that.”

I handed her a bottle of water and watched her take a swig. “How did you know all that stuff back there?” She exclaimed in disbelief. “It was like watching James Bond in action, only that I was in it.”

I grabbed her unexpectedly by the throat and slammed her against the tombstone. My grip
tightened around her throat and cold eyes bore through her. “No more games Esmeralda, what do those people back there want from you?”

“You are hurting me Pablo, please!” She whimpered and I let her go. She collapsed on the
ground in a heap and clutched at her soar throat.

“What do they want from you Esmeralda? I have seen the Cartel at work and they usually
send two or three people to do their job, not a whole army? What do they want from you? What are you not telling me?”

She coughed and gulped for air, her eyes full of tears. I saw her hand move for the gun and
quickly pulled out my .45. But instead, she dug into her jeans’ pocket and held up a disc. “This is what they want?”

I took a step back. “What’s that?”

“It’s a list of the Cartel organization: from the Lords, the lieutenants, to the guys running the streets.”

I stared at her in horror. “You know that you are dead already?”

She nodded as tears fell down her cheeks. My eyes softened with sympathy at the sight of her. I knew that she was in a lot of trouble.

“What do I do Pablo? Tell me what to do and I will do it.”

I sat in silence for a long time and wished for a cigarette. I had gone cold turkey years ago and never once looked back on smoking.

“We head for the El Paso border,” I said. “The Cartel will expect that but I have a few friends in the FBI who awe me favors.”

Esmeralda’s eyes brightened at the mention of America but still she was cautious. “The drug cartels control the routes into America,” she
pointed out. “And I don’t have papers to go in through the front door Pablo?”

I waved a hand at her. “These friends of mine are spooks. They don’t need papers to move
around.”

Esmeralda stretched out her hand. “Take it,” she said. “The disc will be safer in your hands.”

I looked at the disc and wondered how many people it had killed. Drug money was the 21st
century gold and gold came with a price, up to and sometimes including death.

“No,” I said. “You keep it.”

The destination was America: a dream of better days ahead.

El Paso Border, Texas

 

We knelt by the Rio GrandeRiver and
watched the highway through a pair of binoculars. The highway leading into
Texas was always
crowded with cars and security here was very tight. Folks had to go through two checkpoints: the American and Mexican one.

At the mention of the disc, the FBI had
brought out the heat: armored vehicles, suits and sunglasses on foot and somewhere out there in the bushes, snipers.

There would be no Drug Cartels for miles. The FBI had swept the area and set up a perimeter. The Cartels killed and tortured innocent people and unsuspecting policemen. But they knew just like every other carnage inflicting underground groups that the FBI played no games.

“You will be safe from here,” I told Esmeralda. “Give the disc to a man named Christopher Clark and no one else.”

She looked at me with astonishment. “You are not coming with me?”

“No,” I replied as I stood up. “I have to clean up things on this end. Take care of yourself Esmeralda.” I gave her a brief hug and turned to leave. It was better this way. I was horrible at goodbyes. I hated saying goodbye.

I heard the click of a gun behind me and stood very still. Slowly, I raised my hands and
turned around. She was pointing her gun at me.

“I can’t let you go Pablo,” she said, a pang of sadness in her tone.

I studied her face and saw it. “What gave me away?” I asked.

She shook her head. “Remember the night at your house when I used the computer?”

“What about it?” My eyes narrowed at her.

“I wasn’t just on Face Book. I inserted the disc Pablo.” She took in a deep breath. “Your
name is on the list.” I watched her finger slip to the trigger.

My face didn’t flinch. She shook her head again and continued. “I was a fool to trust you Pablo; I even thought that I loved you.” She shook the gun at me and for a second I was afraid that it would go off by mistake.

“Easy on the gun Esmeralda.” My eyes darted nervously from her face to the gun.

She was a cop, quickly understood and raised the weapon to my chest level.

“You came to my house to kill me!” She said. “That’s why you were there. I don’t know what happened but you suddenly grew a conscience and decided not to. Maybe I reminded you of your family.”

“Esmeralda,” I said in a calm voice. “The FBI will be here soon. None of them know what I look like. I’m going to turn around and walk away from here. If you have to kill me then you will have to do it now. But am going to walk.” I turned and
took the first step, my nerves tense.

“Don’t make me shoot you!” she yelled. “Stop Pablo, don’t make me kill you!” Her voice was
shaky with uncertainty. Ten steps later, I heard her crying voice. “Will I ever see you again?”

I did not stop. The sound of a distant engine caught my ear and I knew that the FBI cavalry had arrived. I turned into the trees and ran.

 

6 Months later

 

Paradise Valley, Arizona

ParadiseValley is the 71st most expensive zip code in the United States: population of residents
approximately 14,000, median household income $150,000, 12 exotic tourist resorts.

I felt a tinge of excitement well up inside my body when I saw her running towards me. Her silky hair flew behind her as she rushed into my open arms. We kissed passionately before pulling back.

“Here,” I said as I handed her a white envelope.

“You remembered!” she exclaimed.

“I would never forget. Happy 21st birthday girl.”

She giggled and reaped the envelope open. Inside were two plane tickets to Paris. A scream
of delight escaped her lips and she again jumped into my arms, her hands around my neck. I picked her up from the ground and we kissed again.

“Esmeralda?” I said. “I know how the Chinese won their wars.”

She gave me a curious look. “How?”

“By dropping their guns.”

“You resigned?” she asked in surprise.

“Yes,” I said with a laugh. “Its time to get my life back and I thank you for that.”

We held hands and strolled happily down the expensive real estate of ParadiseValley. The road
was lined with an array of cactus plants and large boulders in the distance.

The United States Government had given the youngest chief of police asylum and the newspapers were still singing her praises. The Cartels still wanted her dead but ParadiseValley was the last place anybody would look.

“So Pablo,” Esmeralda said. “Can you now tell me who you are… or were?”

I laughed loudly. “Are we still talking about that?”

“Yes. I have been thinking about it a lot. You move well in the Cartel and FBI circles. You must have been a double agent.”

“Is that what you think?”

“That’s what I believe.”

She opened the door and the smell of home cooking filled my nostrils. And in that moment I
knew that I would never look back in the past. The future was now in the arms of love. A sob escaped her lips.

“Esmeralda? Are you crying?”

“Yes,” she replied. “I have been counting the days since you left. I never thought that I would see you again.”

I spun her around. “I will never leave you my love,” I said. “You never ever have to wait for me again.”

News

Off to AFRICA

 

My book A Whisper in the Jungle has been picked by a publishing company and approved by the board. It has been scheduled for release soon.

 

The music is all around you, all you have to do is listen

 

Contact

 

mrobertto@yahoo.com

Without God, what are we? What do we have? What is life...