Robert Stahlnecker
Dreams of Tomorrow

Acknowledgments

To those that strive
To provide for another,
Fear not, for it all
Starts with you.

Warning!
Contains Sexually Explicit Material

Before We Begin

As we have seen in Animated Parenthood, each character possesses his/her
unique qualities, whether it be the clever Victor St. Paul, the determined
Laura Winston, or the easygoing Roberto Carrero. In this book we will be
dealing with other characters who will be emerging such as Karen and Ryu
Winston, Enya St. Paul and Gloria Carrero.

In Dreams of Tomorrow, there will be something that was not caught in the
previous book, as indicated by flashbacks and dialogue. We will find that
there is more to the characters than was was described in Dreams'' prequel,
since they were not completely described. (Don't blame me for showing
flat characters - I was learning how to write.) Even though they were
"flat," you could feel what they were feeling, thus making them almost
"round."

In my philosophy, a "fictional" character remains fictional unless you can
connect with him/her/it; otherwise it's just an abstraction with a name. Just
the same, a character is not considered "round" or "flat" unless you can feel
the character. Words can help, and I believe that I gave enough words to
make you feel the character. Didn't the description of Cynthia Brown's
situation with Jake make you almost cry? If it did, then I did my job.

These are brief overviews of the book and its characters, plus the history of
River Pines, the main location. Only the characters that will be mentioned
more than twice will be described. To learn more about them, you have to
read the book.

Book Overview

Dreams of Tomorrow takes place in River Pines, Florida, in the year 2006.
Laura Winston has graudated early and is looking forward to working at a
restaurant, thanks to a night school. An unexpected surprise gives her more
burdens than she expected. Victor St. Paul receives an early associate's
degree and goes right ahead at the work force, only to receive something
unpleasant. Roberto Carrero engages in expanding his father's restaurant
but encounters a personal problem.

While all this is happening, Dr. Brian Silverstein, establisher of the toon
DNA project, blows the whistle on his toon project, seeing that the recent
"toon explosion" is causing the United States population to rise
dramatically. He convinces Congress to pass a bill that will stop the "toon
market." Ironically, the world "got caught in the explosion" and
international toon adoptions are available. Although Congress is
considering the bill, they decide to continue the adoptions.

History of River Pines

River Pines, Florida, started out as a small missionary in the days Spain
ruled the peninsula. Called La Crucia de la Dominica ("the Cross of the
Lord" in Spanish), it was considered one of the holiest of the Spanish
missionaires. After cession to the United States, a group of Unitarians
realized the true spiritual value of the missionary and decided to claim it in
the name of their church.

The name "River Pines" derived from a poem an esoteric Christian wrote of
the missionary: "As the river pines the light of God." ("Pines" meant
"carries.") The town council was attracted by the poem and decided to use
the phrase "river pines" as the name of the town, and in 1905 La Crucia -
as it was called - became River Pines.

River Pines Community College was established in 1920 by a former
university professor, Dr. James Kallor, after purchasing what used to be -
surprisingly - a large missionary school for $30. His mission was, in his
words, "to offer the future by training the present." It was rumored that
Florida's best computer programmers, chefs and nurses came from RPCC.

When the Great Depression struck, the people of River Pines did not panic;
instead they quit their jobs and started their own businesses. These
businesses florished until World War II, when the anti-war residents
decided to take action. They simply refused to participate in "feeding those
lunatics" and when pressured to support the war, they answered with a
determined "NO!" After the war, most of Florida's soldiers went to River
Pines to be relieved of their battle experiences. It was thought that after
leaving River Pines did the soldiers forget about serving in the war. In
fact, when one soldier was granted a medal of honor, he said, "I did not
serve in that crazy war." He even left without the medal.

River Pines was a target of suspect by some members of Congress, a few
Presidents and even one Supreme Court justice. The small college
community, however, was never condemned and never had any real
problems with the United States government. To this day, it was considered
one of the greatest places in Florida.

Character Profile

Laura Winston
Birthdate: August 19, 1989
Birthplace: Tallahasse, Florida
I.Q.: 129
Height: 5'9
Sign: Leo
Hair Color: ash blonde
Eye Color: blue
Heritage: Irish, German, French
Favorite Food: pizza
Favorite Music: rock, alternative
Children: Karen Jennifer Winston
Kevin Jonathan Winston ("Ryu")
Victoria Angela Winston

Karen Winston
Birthdate: July 2, 2003
Birthplace: River Pines, Florida
I.Q.: est. 145
Sign: Cancer
Height: 2'2
Hair Color: ash blonde
Eye Color: blue
Heritage: Irish, German, French
Favorite Food: pizza
Favorite Music: rock, alternative

Kevin "Ryu" Winston
Birthdate: July 2, 2003
Birthplace: River Pines, Florida
I.Q.: est. 145
Sign: Cancer
Height: 2'2
Hair Color: jet black
Eye Color: brown
Heritage: Japanese
Favorite Food: pizza
Favorite Music: rock, alternative

Victor St. Paul
Birthplace: Houston, Texas
Birthdate: January 29, 1989
I.Q.: 145
Sign: Aquarius
Height: 6'1
Hair Color: light brown
Eye Color: hazel
Heritage: German, Irish, English, Native American (Pueblo)
Favorite Food: ethnic/regional cooking
Favorite Music: rock, jazz, dance, New Age
Children: Enya MacLaine St. Paul
Vincent Michael St. Paul

Enya St. Paul
Birthdate: July 2, 2003
Birthplace: River Pines, Florida
I.Q.: est. 140
Height: 2'3
Sign: Cancer
Hair Color: light brown
Eye Color: hazel
Heritage: German, Irish, English, Native American (Pueblo)
Favorite Food: ethnic/regional cooking
Favorite Music: rock, jazz, dance, New Age

Roberto Carrero
Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico
Birthdate: August 3, 1990
I.Q.: 137
Sign: Leo
Height: 5'11
Hair Color: black
Eye Color: brown
Heritage: Aztec, Spaniard, other Hispanic
Favorite Food: Mexican
Favorite Music: Popular, Latin
Children: Gloira Estefan Carrero
Jacob Kyle Carrero (ne‚ Brown)

Gloria Carrero
Birthdate: July 2, 2003
Birthplace: River Pines, Florida
I.Q.: est. 135
Sign: Cancer
Height: 2'2
Hair Color: black
Eye Color: brown
Heritage: Aztec, Spaniard, other Hispanic
Favorite Food: Mexican
Favorite Music: Popular, Latin

Jacob Carrero (ne‚ Brown)
Birthdate: July 3, 2003
Birthplace: River Pines, Florida
I.Q.: unknown
Height: 2'2
Sign: Cancer
Hair Color: brown
Eye Color: grey
Heritage: Russian, German, Hebrew
Favorite Food: anything not spicy
Favorite Music: soft rock, pop, Latin

Chapter 1
As the sounds of the graduation overture tore at the empty space occupying
the auditorium crowded with parents, guardians and other relatives, the
graduation ceremony began as each student slowly - and keeping their
prescribed distance - strided towards the area designated for the Class of
2006. A lone figure, dressed in cap and gown, with ash blond hair and
sparkling blue eyes, assumed her distance and, upon arrival of her seat,
stood at attention. It was after every student attended did everyone salute
to the American flag as the band played the "Star Spangled Banner."
Afterwards the prinicpal of River Pines High School asked for everyone to
be seated, and every person in the auditorium obeyed.

First was the incitation, done by a young boy with black hair and glasses,
with a whiny voice that made him nearly a "nerd," yet was accepted by the
class. Next were the awards, done by the master of ceremonies, in which
several scholarships were presented, one of them being from the Marines to
a young, athletic girl. And suddenly, the M.C. presented something
surprising to an unexpecting person: "The Early Graduation scholarship
goes to a special person who is not only one of the most aggressive students
in this very school but also a very loving mother as well. Please give a
hand to Miss Laura Jean Winsont."

As the young blonde got up, she gracefully received her award, for she
heard constantly in school the "nasty" blonde jokes. She smiled awkwardly
as the mass of spectators applauded for this amazing young girl who, over
the course of her high school life, would touch the lives of two special
young people.

The awards were followed by the principal citing, "And now, Miss Janie
Artera is presented to help us remember the past." As a young brunette
recited everything that has happened to the Class of 2006, the young blonde
remembered everything that has happened over the course of her high
school life, especially bringing something into the world in which she will
never leave.

The history recitation was followed by the saludictorian, a young man with
long red hair, in which the following words were stated: "Fear not the
waters of life, for it is you who steers the raft." Five minutes passed before
the valedictorian, a young blonde of eighteen years, gave out an
encouraging message. Afterward, the diplomas were handed out, and when
the name "Laura Jean Winston" was called out, the blue-eyed blonde
stepped up, shook hands with the school board members, received her
diploma and shook hands with the district superintendent. After picking up
her flowers, in which the class agreed upon as roses, she resumed her
seating position and stood until all the diplomas were handed out.

After all was done, the principal instructed the class to "turn your tassels,"
in which they did, and "face the audience." After saying, "Everyone, we
present the River Pines Class of 2006," an uproar overtook the auditorium,
especially young squeals that resembeled young children. The principal
instructed the class to "go out the sides and give your flowers to your
parents or guardians."

After the first class song was played and the blonde walked out to the
auditorium seats, she approached her parents, one in whom was holding two
toon mink children, one a boy, the other a girl.

"Here you go, Karen," the blonde said, giving her a purple rose. The mink
replied, "Thank you, Mommy."

"Ryu, this is for you," the graudate said to the male. He accepted the
crimson rose, saying, "Thank you, Mommy."

The third rose, in which she possessed, was then given to a young eighteen-
year-old boy with long, light brown hair, wearing a white dress shirt, deep
violet tie, crsytal cross, and black slacks. "Thanks for everything, Vic," the
blonde said.

"You're welcome, Laura," he replied.

She then made her way to the wall of memories, as the second class song
played, where she found pictures of her as a little girl, in junior high, and
finally, in her junior year. She did not plan on embracing the seniors of the
2006 class, since her best friend taught her that "goodbyes don't exist;
embrace to welcome." A few seniors embraced her, which she was to fight
off tears, for these seniors were also bearers of special people. "I'm going
to miss you," she told them.

After the song the band played the school song, something played during
the football pep rallies. After the last line, "Together for all time," the
whole class, including the blonde, shouted, "Falcons, Falcons, reign
supreme!" Before they could finish the victory call, all the graduation caps
were yanked off and screams exhaled from the mouths of the Class of 2006.

As Laura Winston made her way through the crowd rushing to meet the
graduates, she was lucky to spot Victor St. Paul, holding his son Vincent
and Enya by his side. Although she has obtained psychic powers during her
first pregnancy, she was so exicted that she cannot utilize them. She
follwed Victor's waving hand until she was face-to-face with one of the
Alumni of 2005.

"Well, how did it go?" the graduate interrogated.

"A-okay, buddy," Victor replied. "You were just as focused as I was last
year." He added, "First you see my graduation and now I see yours."

"Wait 'till you see my wedding," Laura joked.

After arriving at the Winston couple, with their grandchildren, Karen and
Ryu rushed to embrace their mother. Unfortunately for them, they can only
embrace her legs.

"Congradu. . . What's that word again, Mommy?" Karen asked.

"Congradulations. And thank you, darling," was the intimate reply.

"Good work, Mommy," Ryu said with pep. He also could not say
"congradulations" and had to use something simpler.

"They are good at math and cannot say big words right," joked Kevin
Winston, Laura's father. Ryu, upon adoption, was given the name Kevin
Jonathan , after his new grandfather, but was still called "Ryu" because that
was the name he was used to.

"Dad!" Laura retorted. "They're just babies."

Ryu overheard and said, "We're not babies!"

"Well, you're just two."

"Two what?"

"Two years old. That makes you still a baby." She bent down and kissed
him on the lips. "And you're still my baby boy."

"Hey!" Karen cut in. "No one kisses Ryu on the lips."

"Oh, you shouldn't use that voice in front of your mommy," Mr. Winston
chided. "It's not nice."

"I'm sorry, Mommy," Karen said and hugged her mother.

"It's all right, baby." She got up and said to her parents, "Well, are we
going to Aztec or not?"

"We're going. We just have to get your picture," Mrs. Winston replied.

"Hey, don't forget, I want to take a picture, too," Victor added.

After snpshots were made, first of Laura and her parents, then Laura and
her children, and finally of Laura and Victor. Afterward, they went into
their vehicles - Laura with Victor, the mink children with their
grandparents - and headed for the Aztec Eagle Mexican Restaurant.

After arriving, Laura and the rest went into the Aztec Eagle restaurant
lobby where they were met by co-owner Roberto Carrero and his children
Gloria and Jake. While they were taken to a large table, Roberto said,
"Laura, my family and I has a surprise for you." When presented to her
seat, the young Mexican immigrant placed in front of her a crystal rose.
"To the first American friend I ever had."

A tear streamed from Laura's eye. "Oh, mucho gracias, amigo. Mucho
gracias."

"De nada," was the foreign reply, "y no me ames."

Understood as "and don't love me," Laura laughed as she remembered when
Roberto told her that at their first night out together, mainly to discuss
parential matters. It was not a clash of Roman Catholic versus Protestant;
instead it was more like a Felix and Oscar situation from The Odd Couple:
Roberto was more firm in his parenting while Laura was more relaxed. She
told him, at the time, "You know what, Roberto? You are the family
version of a drill sergant." His response, "Well, then, no me ames." After
translating it, Laura had to laugh and accept his advice on parenting.

As the food was being served, Larua said, "You know, if it weren't for
Victor's generosity, I wouldn't be here with an associate's in culinary arts."

"You know, Laura, I am a bit good at cooking," Victor added.

"Oh, don't make an understatement. Your cooking is like Heaven."

"Oh, help me, God!" Laughter rolled, then Karen asked an explicit
question: "Mommy, why did you have to graduate?"

"From night school? So as to get a job."

"No, I mean from high school?"

"Baby, I had to. Otherwise I wouldn't get a job."

"But you have a diploma from night school. Doesn't it get you a job?"

"Honey, if I don't have a high school diploma, then anyone that will hire me
won't because I didn't get what I need from high school."

"What do you need?"

"Skills to do a job right, like math, science, and other stuff."

"Why do you need to know math?"

"I'll explain later." Laura took off a piece of a burrito while Victor bit into
a taco. Ryu noticed that Jake was eating an American plate, something in
which he asked, "Jake, why aren't you eating Mexican food?"

Jake replied, "I don't like spicy foods. They make my mouth burn."

"You chicken," Ryu taunted. "Try something hot."

"Ryu, leave Jake alone. He'll try something spicy later," Laura chided.
"Besides, eat your food before it gets cold."

She bit into her food and a second later dropped it to get a glass of Coke
since she felt a hot sensation in her mouth.
After cooling it down, she said, "Okay, who's the joker that put hot sauce in
my burrito?"

"Got the hot seat, Laura?" Victor said while laughing. "I put Tabasco
sauce in your burrito."

"Why you. . . " Looking at everyone, she smiled and told her best friend,
"I'll get you next time."

"Uh, Mommy, eat your food before it gets cold," Ryu mimicked at his
mother. The party started laughing instantly.

After eating, the party then paid for the dinner, left a tip, and exited the
restaurant. It was after being dropped off by Victor did Laura pick up
Victoria, entered the house with her children and headed for her room while
Karen and Ryu entered theirs. The two-year-olds undressed to nudity and
laid down, not even attempting to touch each other. Then they were sound
asleep. Laura placed Victoria in her crib, dressed in her nightgown and laid
down. After gazing at the stars did she finally sleep.

Upon arriving in his mother's room, Ryu found his mother tending to his
baby sister, with the light on, who was in need of a diaper. (Laura found
out later that toons tend to secrete an oily substance also through
"urination.") She turned around and saw her black-haired son standing at
the food of the bed. After arriving at him, she asked, "Ryu, what's wrong."
Looking at the semen on his body, she said, "Oh, did Karen have sex with
you?"

The Japanese mink looked at her and asked, "What's sex?"

Oh, he's so na‹ve, she thought. After helping Ryu to the bed, she placed
Victoria in her crib and sat down to talk about "the facts of life."

"Ryu, did you know where you came from?"

"From my mommy's tummy?" Laura sensed he forgot about his biological
father, Ryu Matsunaga.

"Well, you actually came out of your daddy's tummy, but do you know
where you came from?"

"No."

Although Laura knew how the toons were formed, she decided not to make
the situation more complicated. Instead, she decided to use the natural
model.

"You know that your daddy wanted you and decided to have a baby in his
tummy. Well, he took something called an egg and another thing called a
sperm, mixed them together and came out with you. You grew in his
tummy, was pushed out, and here you are now."

"Well, why did he look different than me?"

"What do you mean?"

"Why is he human and I'm not?"

"It's hard to explain. Do you want to know where I came from?"

"Yes, please do."

"My mommy and daddy loved each other and wanted a baby, so they got
together in which my daddy placed his organ, called a penis, into my
mommy's organ, called a vagina, having the sperm mix with the egg and
forming me. I grew inside an organ called the uterus, which is in the
tummy, before I was born. Later I was born and here I am." She smiled and
looked at Ryu. "And there you have it: sex in a nutshell."

Reaching for a baby wipe, she grabbed one and wiped the semen off of
Ryu's body and told him to lay in bed while "I fetch your sister." She went
out the door and later came in with a depressed Karen in her arms.

"Karen, you know what you did with Ryu was wrong. Did you apologize?"
Laura asked.

"Yes, but he didn't want it," she replied tearfully.

"It's all right, Karen. I just got scared," Ryu told her. Turning to his
mother, he asked, "Will you tell Karen what you told me?"

"Sure." After seating Karen on her knee, she started from the top, telling
everything from her parent's intercourse to her birth. Then Karen said, "I
know. I didn't want Ryu to have a baby."

"But he has to be ready. And I know you aren't either. Besides, he's your
brother."

"But he touches me on the breasts and bottom."

"He's just being nice to you. Besides, he wants to know every part of your
body. It's all right."

"Okay. But can I still sleep with Ryu."

"Yes, but don't attack him again. He got so scared faster than if he faced a
dragon."

Ryu smiled. He wasn't afraid of dragons, or anything else for that matter,
but this was the first time he experienced fear. Laura knew Ryu's courage
but also knew that even Achilles had a fear himself.

"Oh, Mommy, can I see your baby pictures?" Karen asked. After Laura
said, "Sure," the seventeen-year-old walked towards the closet, retrieved a
photo album, and after returning to the bed turned to the first page which
had pictures of Laura as a baby.

"You looked like that?!" Ryu asked. He saw a picture of Laura on a sheet,
wearing diapers and a shirt. Then looking at it more, he said, "Oh, you have
Karen's eyes and nose."

Karen buried her face in her arms. Laura noticed and said, "What's wrong,
Karen?"

"I don't look like you at all," she said.

"Why? Every time I look into your baby blues I see me."

"I have white fur and a funny nose."

"Yes, but you also have blonde hair, like me. And you have blue eyes, like
me. Oh, and you smile like me, not to mention you have my favorite food.
Remember what I told you about that lab? You have mink genes."

"Yes, but you're still pretty," Ryu added. His eyes started getting drowsy.
"I'm going to sleep."

"Me too," Karen said. "Good night."

"Good night, you two." Laura kissed them, then resumed her slumber.
What dreams shall they dream of? was the thought.