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|Chapter 4: The Absence and Return of Marcellino Romano||Started by: MarcellinoRomano on Jan 25, '23 03:03|
It’d been some time since Marco sat in his seat as the left hand of LA. It’d been some time since Marco had been in LA, or the country for that matter. So to help you understand, we have to go back.
The Luciano Family, like most families in this thing of ours, have some sort of tie to an original family back in Italy, a mother family we call it. There was some trouble in Naples, the mother family was approaching a bloody and brutal turf war with a rival family. The Don of the mother family, who shall remain nameless for privacy and protective reasons, reached out to luciano_lucky, stressing there was a war brewing. None of their guys were able to reach out to the other family to arrange a sit down out of fear of being whacked. See, they did things differently over there, sure, the rules and principles were all in the same, but they carried themselves differently. The grass roots Italians ran their families like Militias, not like a corporation. They shot first, asked questions never. War to them is as literal as it gets, screw attacking financially, they’ll take a whole family and anyone in their way without thinking of a dollar.
In shorter terms, they needed a made guy who was a neutral, an outsider, that they couldn’t attack without consequence, someone that could mediate and negotiate terms through. And Lucky knew that nobody would be better for the job than Marco. Marco was born in Italy, he spoke the language, he was a made guy with high respect in the US. But he was also as brutal and cunning as them if he needed to be.
Lucky arranged a sit down with Marco, presented the idea to him, assured him that getting the old country on his side was a move for the better. Marco agreed, on one condition, that any of his earnings from his rackets while has was away went directly to his family, so his absence or possible death was no financial burden to them.
Marco spent the next few days spending time with his family, catching them up to speed on what he needed to do and where he needed to go, keeping as much detail out as humanly possible. Then one morning, it was time to take the trip.
He made his way to the airport, through a private gate with no security, arranged by Lucky. He made his way to the jet with nothing inside but a suitcase with some cash, a handgun and a few suits and the clothes on his back. After boarding the jet, he relaxed and settled into his new home for the next 14 hours.
After a most needed nap, he was only a few minutes away from landing. The pilot alerted him that they were approaching, and Marco prepared to approach the unknown. The plane touched down and Marco stepped off, heading to another gate with no security, this time arranged by the mother family. After exiting the airport, he was greeted by two men, one with an olive skin complexion, bushy eyebrows and a long head of thick, black, shiny hair held together in a ponytail, Marco knew straight off the bat that he was Sicilian. Marco was half Sicilian, on his Father’s side, but he never knew the guy, so his heritage was pretty unknown. What he’d heard about them though was nothing shy of borderline frightening. In the early days of this thing of ours, they’d burn a whole village to the ground if they saw fit, they feared nothing. The other guy, shorter, lighter skinned, fat as Henry the 8th with a bald head and thick moustache, he was most definitely Calabrian. The grass roots Italians mostly kept to their own kind, but times were changing and guys from different parts of Italy were being brought into different families, the same thing happening back home, so it all wasn’t unusual to Marco
“Mister Romano, I am Francisco Parisi, it is a pleasure to meet.” Said the Sicilian
“This is Paulo Barbaro, he doesn’t speak any English.”
“Come stai Paolo? Sono nato qui e parlavo italiano a casa, parlo la lingua.” Marco said to Paulo the Calabrian
“I hate to have you in such a rush, but we must go now, we’ve been here too long and people are starting to stare, it is not safe. Not in this time.”
The two men opened their coats simultaneously, taking out two M3 machine guns, cocking them and keeping them at the ready, in broad daylight, outside an airport, on a busy road.
You see, war and hits in Italy were much different than they were back home. Sure, back home families go to war and people die. But back home, most wars were fought silently and out of the public eye. If someone was getting whacked, it happened in the night when the guy’s taking his garbage out and someone jumps out of the bush with a .38, puts two holes in his head and off they go without a trace or they hit you while you’re sleeping. Here in Italy, it was literal. Machine guns and armoured cars took to the streets, they opened fire with fifty men and killed anyone on the wrong side of the dividing line, they ruled it all here.
The three men walked across the street to the car, guarded by an additional two men, barely men actually, no older than about eighteen. Both wielding machine guns and body armour. They all entered the car and they headed out of the city, going back up mainland to the mother family compound.
After about a two and a half hour drive, they arrive at what appeared to be an entire gated community, residing in the countryside, it turns out, this was just the Don’s home. On approach to the gate, a group of four more Sicilian men walk over to the car, demanding everyone get out.
Everybody exited the car and it was swept for explosives. Once it was deemed safe, they got back in the car and the gate was opened. They started driving down the driveway, which to Marco looked like Rodeo Drive back in LA, filled with private bars, restaurants, and even its own tailor. Eventually, they reach the main quarters. A beyond ginormous, two hundred and fifty thousand square foot palace, fit for none other than the ruler of the underworld themselves.
They exit the car and head up the front steps, entering the building. The two men Marco arrived with instantly walk away, leaving him at the main entrance. He’s soon then approached by another man, in his late sixties, white hair and a thin moustache, topping it off with a suit that looked more expensive than Marco’s entire wardrobe.
“Mister Romano, we’ve been expecting you. I am Giuseppe Bonpensiero, I am the right hand of this family and I’ll be your point of contact between you and the Don, he doesn’t have any dealings with outsiders whatsoever. You will meet him, but all conversation will be done through me. I understand you speak Italian?”
“Yes, I do, I was born here and I spoke the language at home so I have a broad understanding. I’m a little iffy on local dialects though.” Marco responded
Giuseppe spoke perfect English, the guy was more annunciated than Marco was. Giuseppe proceeded to tell Marco that while ever he was in the presence of the Don, he must only speak in Italian, if he had to speak English, he had to whisper in Giuseppe’s ear. The Don believed America to be a burden on modern society and refused to have his home “Westernised”.
Giuseppe was leading Marco to his room where he would stay while he was over here, and Marco worked up the courage to shoot the question that was on his mind.
“Giuseppe, if you don’t mind me asking, and please take no offence if you do, where did you learn to speak such good English being an Italian native?”
“You see, in the first world war, I was a soldier, I was captured by British forces and held captive for many months, in that time, I was confined to a jail cell. All I had to do was read, I taught myself English through reading.”
Marco was stunned by that response, not saying anything that may rub him the wrong way though.
They arrived at Marco’s temporary new home where Giuseppe parted from him, telling him he would come and retrieve him when the Don was ready to meet him face to face, and warned him to wear nothing but a three piece suit.
Inside the door was a two bedroom mini mansion, with television, it’s own kitchen, bathroom and private balcony. Marco settled in nicely.
A few more hours had passed and Marco heard a knock on the door, he was already dressed and ready for his meeting with the Don. He opened the door and there was Giuseppe, in a full tuxedo with white dress gloves to match.
“The Don will see you now Mister Romano.”
The pair headed up three flights of stairs and down a long corridor, guarded by two men, brandishing more machine guns. Giuseppe walked right by them, entering the room and closing the door. One of the men grabbed Marco and pinned him against the wall face first, while the other stuck his gun in his back with one hand, while the other searched him. After a thorough pat down. They let him go. They stepped aside, pointing their guns to the ground
“Entra, maiale occidentale” One of them said
Marco well and truly knew by now that his made status was the only thing keeping him in one piece here.
He knocked on the door, it opened moments later, Giuseppe on the other side of it
“Entra, Signore Romano” Giuseppe said
“Grazie” Marco returned
Marco was greeted by a dining table, five chairs surrounding it, the sixth spot being occupied by the Don, in his wheelchair, pinstriped suit and fedora.
“Siediti, Americano” The Don said, pointing to the chair beside him, removing his hat, placing it on his lap
Marco nodded and approached the Don, taking his hand and kissing his family ring.
“Padrino, ti ringrazio per avermi accolto nella tua casa e nel tuo posto di lavoro, il piacere e l'onore sono miei.” Marco says to Giuseppe, who then recites it to the Don
Marco sits, also removing his hat, before any more words are spoken, a server brings in three plates of food, one for the each of them. Grass Roots Italians won’t discuss anything unless it’s over a meal, they say food dampens a man’s soul and helps reveal his true intentions. Marco reaches out to grab his knife and fork when Giuseppe signals for him to stop. It became clear that nobody ate until the Don started. The Don started eating, so Giuseppe and Marco did as well.
“Il tuo capo, Luciano, ti ha detto che siamo in guerra. Non posso sacrificare i miei uomini a rischio di spargimento di sangue. Sei stato portato qui per uno scopo. Proverai a chiamare una tregua con il mio rivale, se fallisce, ucciderai il mio rivale e non ci sarà più guerra, capito?” The Don said, giving Marco a stare that could kill.
Marco didn’t sign up to be a hitman, but it was that, or he didn’t leave that room alive. He turned to Giuseppe and said,
“Sì Padrino, ho capito, come desideri, farò ciò che mi viene chiesto, non dubitarne.” Giuseppe then recited it back
“Allora tu ed io siamo sulla stessa pagina come si dice nel tuo paese. Basta parlare, mangia!”
The three men sat quietly and enjoyed their meal, Marco wasn’t even sure what kind of fish he was eating.
A few days pass, and Marco heads into the city to sit down with one of the rival captains. To get the story moving, they couldn’t come to an agreement. This went on for a while, back and forward, back and forward. The rival family couldn’t settle, and the Don’s patience was wearing thin. It got to a point after two weeks where he’d had enough and ordered Marco to kill the rival Don.
Marco and the family captains had decided the best time and only time the rival Don was gonna be vulnerable was at his son’s wedding. Now back home, if you hit someone at a wedding or a funeral, you were fair game to anyone who wanted to get you, but here, war meant war. Marco had carried out plenty of hits before, but none like this. You catch a guy taking a leak and pop him and ditch the gun. This was a full blown assassination in the midst of what was about to be a war.
They’d established that the rival Don, nor his hands, or closest members had never laid eyes on Marco, they only knew of an American that was here. So they came up with their attack plan:
-Marco would go and get a job at the winery that the wedding was set to take place in and work there in the days prior, so no heads would be turned at him being there by winery staff, nor the rival Don’s men.
-Once the rival family arrive, Marco would then make his way to the service gate where the delivery trucks come in and out and let in a truck, hijacked by their men, full of soldiers that he would let out and they would go into the main building where the reception would take place after the ceremony
-When everyone was inside and accounted for, Marco would lock the doors, signal the soldiers, and they’d take care of everyone inside besides the rival Don.
Now let’s fast forward a bit
Everything went to plan, the last person entered the main building and Marco closed the doors, barricading them all inside. He went around to the loading door where the soldier stood, waiting for his signal. Marco gave the thumbs up and the roller door was closed, seconds later, all hell broke loose.
The deafening sound of thirty men with machine guns blasted through the entire winery, muzzle flashes and broken glass flying everywhere. After a few minutes, the shots, and the screams came to a halt and nothing but smoke poured out of where the windows once were. The roller door opened, as was expected, and Marco pretended to be afraid and went to run off.
“Voi! Portami via da qui! Adesso! Mi uccideranno!” Screamed the rival Don, that not being part of the plan, but making it a lot easier to hit him.
The rival Don got in his car and waited for Marco to enter. He thought fast and grabbed a shard of broken glass, jamming it into the rear tire. He then jumped in the car and put his foot to the floor.
“Signore, chi erano quegli uomini?” Marco dumbfoundedly asked
“Fottuti scarafaggi! Li ucciderò tutti! Vogliono la guerra? Ora ce l'hanno!” He responded
As they went down the long, winding, dirt road to exit the winery, the car tire completely burst, causing the car to slide out. Marco told the rival Don to stay put and he would see what was wrong. He got out of the car and crouched down at the wheel, pulling out his trusty, American .38. He walked over to the window and said to the rival Don in English.
“Your luck just keeps getting worse pal.”
Marco emptied all six rounds into his head, officially killing the rival Don. The mother family was finally safe and back in power.
He made his way back to the compound where he was greeted by Giuseppe, Marco filled him in on everything that had happened, confirming their threat was dead.
They rushed to the Don’s quarters, where Giuseppe filled him in on the events, the Don said nothing.
“Ora che il capo è morto, il resto della famiglia, ciò che resta di loro sarà costretto alla sottomissione, o dovranno obbedire alle nostre regole, o incontreranno lo stesso destino. Grazie Marcello” Giuseppe says to Marco, shaking his hand
“Agh!” The Don shouts at Giuseppe, shaking his head at him and waving his hand
The Don, slowly lifts himself from his chair, walking with a limp and hunch towards Marco, he grabs him by the head
“T-thank-a you, Mister Romano” The Don says in English, kissing both of his cheeks
“You a-make-a friend here in Italy. You make-a a-good work.”
“Grazie, Padrino” Marco says back to him, seeing the man is gonna have a heart attack if he tries to get any other English words out.
The following day, Marco was on a plane back home to the states. He landed a few days earlier than he had told anyone, but he needed some time to himself, so he stayed in a hotel. It hadn’t been easy to shake off what he’d endured. Once and for all though, Marcellino decided it was time for him to return home, and never step foot off of his own home soil ever again.
How will his life go on after seeing the things he saw? Nobody knows, but there’s only one way to find out……….
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