Brian is a fifteen-year-old boy who is a bundle of baggage. He is introspective and is guided by a strong sense of the spiritual. As any teenage might, he struggles with who he is, trying to find a place in the world, but more importantly, in the family who adopted him.
On the soccer field, he is the unquestioned leader. Works hard in school, and while popular, is close to only a select few, choosing quality over quantity. His identical twin, Brad, died tragically (the previous book, Splintered Lives, Book Three of the Lives Trilogy), and his parents never got over it. His mother committed murder-suicide to end the anguish at the loss of her son. This left Brian alone. He was adopted by Jeremy Evans, a high school counselor and his wife, Vicky. It was a mixed marriage in that Vicky had two sons, Brett and Bobby, from a previous marriage, and Jeremy had three other adopted sons, twins Randy and Billy, and a Navajo boy, George. George’s life experience is like Brian’s in many ways, especially in the way their families and loved ones died.
Of the adopted boys, Brian is the quietest, the most reserved. He is comfortable with his “brothers” but struggles with who he is. Brian is loyal and will take on anyone who he sees as a threat to them, willing to put himself in harm’s way to do so.
Handsome with longish black hair (Jeremy calls him one of the forgotten Beatles because of its length and style), strong and stocky. His eyes are green, but change to hazel depending upon what he wears. He has a small smattering of freckles under his eyes and across his nose. His first love is soccer, but he dreams of becoming a social studies teacher and soccer coach. This is similar to his adoptive father, Jeremy.
This excerpt from Betrayed perhaps typifies Brian.
Here Is a Snippet from Betrayed:
It was still. No breeze. The air, dead, smelled of red dirt and decay. A hawk circled overhead, cawed once, and glared at him. At least Brian thought it did. He wondered vaguely if it was an omen, a message from the spirit world George often talked about. A warning, perhaps. Fitting if it was, Brian thought. If they survived, he would ask him.
He lay prone in the dirt, and glanced behind him. Brett was not visible. That was good. He wanted his brother safely behind the big boulder. Hidden.
Brian wasn’t afraid to die. He just didn’t want to die. Not yet, anyway. Fifteen was too young. However, he made a promise to watch over George and Brett, and that he would do. If it came to it, he would protect his two brothers any way he could, including sacrificing his own life.
The morning he made the promise, he didn’t think much of it. George was independent. Always had been. Brett was stubborn. Had been ever since Brian knew him. Yet, Brian said he would do what he could, and though it wasn’t exactly a promise, he had given his word, and he had always kept his word.
On the long trek to the mesa, Brian had thought about life and death. It was not the first time death had crossed his mind. He had watched his twin brother die. Brad bled to death from multiple gunshot wounds, and died in a stranger’s arms. After his death, Brian’s mother shot his father, and then shot herself.
Brian ended up alone. Alone, except for Jeremy, who took him in, and made him his son just as he did for five other boys.
So, he knew about death. It didn’t scare him. He never worried about it. If it happened, it happened.
However, he wasn’t ready to die, and he didn’t want to die.
At the same time, he had made up his mind that he would do everything in his power to make sure Brett and George would live.
No matter the cost.