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About travlbug

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    Books, music, old radio shows, travel, food, the occasional movie.

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  1. The school itself may have penalties for on-line bullying.
  2. travlbug

    Chapter 3

    I agree with Timothy M.: I can't understand why Drake has not been taken back to his home, if not to jar his memory, then at least to pick up additional items - - such as a laptop computer (he's got to have one!) - - which may assist him in school and with his life going forward. I also can't understand why the executor of his parents' estate has not actually made personal contact with him, though perhaps his coma had something to do with the delay. Further, as his parents were wealthy (at least judging by their son's clothes selections), it is hard to believe that they died intestate, and any will or trust would have provided for the future guardianship of their son, preventing him from winding up in a nasty, mold-ridden DPS home in the first place. Something is indeed fishy, but I will reserve any conspiracy theories until after we see the next couple of chapters. 😉
  3. travlbug

    Chapter 3

    An adult mind in a teen's body: Wow! Drake shares chores in order to build on a relationship. He abandons his consultation with Janice when he realizes that it"s worthless. He threatens legal action to address the Home's shortcomings and to protect his estate. Many adults may view him as a smart aleck/troublemaker, even though his more mature viewpoint may help him win friends: The big question is whether his unique perspective will allow him to correct his past mistakes or wind him up in even more hot water! (Or maybe a bit of both!) Kyle and Drake are cute together. I hope their relationship continues to grow. 😊
  4. travlbug

    A Wednesday to Remember

    It's a joy seeing Nick encountering all these firsts in his life! The best miracle of all is his new family, with an awesome boyfriend thrown in for good measure. And what of Hannah? We'll just have to wait and see, but I sincerely hope it wasn't Nick's skin color, or his status as a foster kid, which gave her pause. As Mrs. C. says, Nick is "one of the good ones," and it's about time that he is surrounded by people who can love and nurture him for the good guy he is.
  5. travlbug

    Chapter 2

    I always knew that quantum physics had practical applications! Can't wait to see Tony and Rory's next science project. 😁
  6. travlbug

    Family Lessons

    I love this chapter: Grandma doesn't let Riley down as she shows acceptance for Carter and his relationship. Nancy may be mother bear, but Walt doesn't let her get too protective: He overrides her veto and assures Riley that he will get his driver's license. (I don't know Nancy's reasons for wanting to deny Riley his license, but if her concern relates to his having only one eye, then shame on her.) Carter's role in convincing Riley to have his surgery is revealed, leading to the best lines in the chapter: Carter says, "You actually listen to me?" and Riley responds, "Depends on the day." Again, Carter shows himself to be the perfect boyfriend by assisting Riley with his dyslexia while preventing him from feeling embarrassed. It is also to Riley's credit that he accepts the help. I love that dad says, "One day, we're going to lock them [Aaron and Riley] both in a room and see what happens," with a subsequent scene showing Aaron and Riley together in their room. So what happens? They argue about the marijuana, but far from killing each other, they wind up sharing a bonding moment. "'I'm glad I caved,' [Aaron] said, as we made eye contact. 'I have missed hanging out with you,'" and Riley commits to finding more time to spend with Aaron. Riley's life has really turned around. So what could possibly go wrong? 😅
  7. travlbug

    Player of the Game

    I still don't trust Trey. He's gone from nasty to nice a little too quickly.
  8. travlbug

    Chapter 2

    If I recall correctly, the show Quantum Leap had God, or a God-like figure, acting as a bartender in the series' final. I loved the idea and was happy to see a similar concept here. I also think it's neat that the only name we have for our hero is Drake (we never learn his prior name), and the omission is obviously purposeful. At any rate, Drake is off to a great start, trying to make friends with Kyle. (I agree with jaysalmn that Kyle is a possible boyfriend in the making.)
  9. travlbug

    Pillow Talk

    OK, Ace, you've lulled our suspicions, so when is the axe going to fall? 😉
  10. travlbug

    Pillow Talk

    Riley continues to mature: His relationship with Carter is flourishing, and he is more willing to confide in him. He is civil to Carter's father, which even Carter finds somewhat weird. He tacitly agrees to accept the surgery for his eye, even when he truly doesn"t want it. He realizes that he has to be a better big brother to Tak, even though he has to have the problem pointed out to him. Riley may not be out of the woods, but the love of his boyfriend and family is clearly transforming him.
  11. travlbug

    Chapter 22

    Jake has had time to think: He already knows that the safety was still engaged so that Klaus could not have shot him. He realizes that he still loves Klaus in that he can't stop thinking about him even when on a date with another man. He realizes that it is Klaus who covers him with a blanket while on the plane--a small act, to be sure, but one which suggests that Klaus still cares. He then finds out that Klaus has been "politely" making sure that the male wedding guests know that he is already taken. As far as Jake is concerned, the "conversation" has already happened, and he tells Klaus, "...let's just fuck." When Klaus says, "Jake, we should talk first, Jake's response--"Like fuck we should"--is classic. The make-up sex that follows provides a better declaration of their love than a conversation ever could. I think that there may be a double wedding after all. 😉
  12. travlbug


    I'm not sure that Riley is against enucleation because of pride, although that may certainly be a part of it. Rather, I think he may be fearful of undergoing the knife. He lost his eyesight to a knife, and he has now been told that he needs to undergo surgery to remove the eye completely. Further, he bears multiple scars, including facial scars, from that knife attack: He may be thinking of his body image--what he might look like with an empty socket as opposed to how he might look with a life-like replacement. I think that his family will give him time to make the right decision (rather than force the issue), as they will want him to feel that the decision is his; and I think that Riley will finally agree that there is no other choice. I rarely think of a sex scene as sweet, but this is an exception. Without any doubt, Carter is the perfect partner for Riley.
  13. travlbug


    A lovely, feel-good chapter, even with Riley's self doubt (or perhaps because of it, as his loved ones respond with support). Mom starts the ball rolling by giving him advice and encouragement, and they share a bonding moment. Then, his boyfriend does the same. My favorite moment in the chapter is when Carter casually says, "I should be a therapist if basketball doesn't work out… especially if I'm going to be married to you." While he teases Riley about being "scared of commitment," he does not suggest for a moment that he is teasing about being married! And what of Trey? Right now, he is merely an annoyance, but Riley better keep vigilant!
  14. travlbug

    Baby Steps

    Did Riley actually tell Carter that he was going to use weed? "Trey needed to be shut up, and the weed, well I needed something to calm my head. I even said that to Carter at lunch!" So did he tell Carter that he needed something to calm his head, or did he tell him that he needed weed to calm his head? Enquiring minds want to know! That said, it is nice to see that Riley would have preferred spending time with Carter over smoking the weed, if he had had the opportunity. However, I was saddened to see that he preferred the weed over the company of his own family when he was offered the opportunity to go out to dinner with them. I love the banter between Carter and Riley on the drive home from school. Actually, giving Riley a goal--such as getting his driver's license--may be a good thing and give him focus. That weed gets around: It is now in a drawer that supposedly no one uses. Why do I feel this sense of impending doom? (Unfortunately, Riley feels that the marijuana worked well for him, so I am afraid that he is going to tempt fate and keep on using it. On a positive note, the weed helped him to clarify his thoughts, and he realizes that he is truly home and that "this is where I want to be.") The big news is that Riley has connected with his psychiatrist: "He seems like he actually wants to help, and who knows, maybe I'll actually let him." Riley may have reached a turning point, but only time will tell.
  15. travlbug

    The Plastic Bag

    I'm sad to see that Riley remains in such turmoil. When he says "it's a weird feeling going from rehab right back into life here in the North side," he sounds like a prisoner who has just been released: "No stop signs, no breaks, no handholding, just go go go." Though he tells himself that this is exactly how he wants it, he doesn't sound very convincing, as he acknowleges that he really doesn't know what normal is or, by corollary, how to achieve it. I can't help but feel that his decision to self medicate with marijuana, far from helping him to achieve normalcy, is going to come back to bite him you know where. While one might think him happy to be back in the structured environment of a superior school, Riley has a completely different view: "This was no different to me than the shitty public school I had to attend in Michigan. It all felt the same, words I can't read, teachers yelling at me for not being able to read to them, and the overwhelming silence that filled the ear when they asked me a question." His thoughts are valid, as it is unclear what the school is doing to address his dyslexia and illiteracy; and forcing him into a situation where he is set up to fail can only worsen his outlook. That said, this situation is fixable, if only Riley would share his concerns with his parents or the staff. Hopefully, he'll make enough progress that he can finally do so. Considering how he acted while in the gang, Riley could certainly be mistaken for a psychopath. Yet, he goes into harm's way to rescue Owen, he slows himself down during their getaway (to make sure that Owen can get away, too), he feels the need to make amends to Owen, and (to refocus on this chapter) he feels the need to make things right with Carter immediately after their argument. Despite portraying himself as a "badass," Riley is both sympathetic and empathetic, so the ingredients are there to help with his redemption. (I love the scene where Riley, in trying to make up with Carter, starts yelling at himself to get the ball rolling!) While Trey seems genuine in wanting to start fresh with Riley, I trust Riley's instincts: "Something about him, it gives me a bad feeling." If it's one thing that Riley has, it's street smarts, so if Riley feels that there is a problem with Trey, you can bet that Trey will be in the middle of something terrible in the near future. I just hope that Riley (and his friends and family) can steer clear of it.

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