The First Page


"I don't drink," you say.

"You don't drink? How can a man not drink? Come on, one drink, on me!" Blanco says. "Have a drink, Porras! Live a little!"

"It leads to immorality."

"It leads to immorality?! Rivera's drinking so much he's pissing lager, yet I will bet my fucking house he'll be in church tomorrow! He's not immoral!"

Rivera smiles and gives a thumbs up and downs another shot.

"Going to church doesn't mean shit. Half the kids here in Tijuana are clutching a gun in one hand and a crucifix in the other," you reply.

"Ah, here he goes again! Fuck, somebody get a few drinks in this man!" Blanco exclaims loudly, annoying the other residents of the bar.

"Calm it down, gentlemen! We're all friends here!" Rivera smiles cheerfully.

"Captain, order Porras to have a drink!" Blanco exclaims loudly.

Captain Mendez allows his stone face to crack slightly as he gives a tiny smile, but he doesn't reply.

"I can understand it. I wish I didn't drink so much," Rivera says.

"Once you see what the Cartels can do to a man, you'll be glad for it to ward off the nightmares," Blanco says.

"Maybe," Rivera shrugs. "Hey, alcohol breaks up families. My wife is pregnant. I want to be at my kids graduation rather in a bar."

"If you want to be a family man, what the fuck are you doing in SWAT? This job takes a lot of our time, is very stressful and the Cartel have a price on all of our heads," you say.

"I want to make a difference," Rivera says defensively.

"You are," Captain Mendez says.

"If there has ever been something to toast to, it's that!" Blanco says, raising his shot glass as he tries to fill it with vodka, spilling half on the table.

You raise your glass of coke, and nod.

"To making a difference!"

"To making a difference!" you all shout.