Story: Amore Ragazze (chapter 11)

Authors: SomeguyJim

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Chapter 11

[Author's notes: Sorry for the delay, been busy. I wanna give a shout-out to MadPanda who gave me an idea regarding Sal’s trip to Montauk. Thank you so much!

There’s a story Charlie tells that is based on personal experience.

The rest… well read and comment.



By SomeguyJim



“I worked there for twenty-nine years. I gave everything I had for them: my time, my energy, my youth; nights I could have spent at home with my family. My own son barely knows me. He’s had diabetes since middle school. I can’t tell you how close my wife and I came to separating over me slaving at work thirteen hours a day six days a week. She’s been the biggest support I could ever hope for, but everyone has their limits. That includes me. I did everything they asked me to do. I was a good employee. I never subscribed to this half-ass attitude that everyone else there seems to enjoy. And those are the people who were promoted.”

Richard Corsitto chuckled slightly as he told his story. He was not quite an old man, could still be considered middle-aged, but he was certainly getting up there in years. His hair was gray, his stomach was big, his youth was gone. He sat in a chair of the office of the middle-aged female boss of the Giovanni family. Consigliere Amy sat off on the side taking notes. Jackie listened to every word Richard said.

“My boss died a year ago; heart attack.” He looked at Don Giovanni with respect, “I’m sorry to hear you lost your husband as well.”

“Thank you,” Jackie said softly without batting an eye.

“This other guy, Jethro, he took over the company. His first order of business was to lay off as many people as possible. That I’ve never understood. I mean everywhere you go people are being laid off, and businesses are closing because of it. You go into a department store now, there’s no one around to help you. You go to a fast food restaurant, there’s one person running the cash registers. But Jethro didn’t see it that way. To him, downsizing meant saving money. After all, who needs all these old people when we get fewer young people, pay them less money, or no money at all? I wasn’t totally surprised when Jethro called me in. He looks right at me and says, ‘Richard, we’ve decided we want to take the company in a new direction,’ IE, they’re firing me because they don’t want me anymore. I had to be out in a month, no supplements, nothing. I was six years away from retirement. Jethro screwed everyone out of their retirement plans. Now I get nothing. My family’s healthcare came from my job. They dropped me immediately. If my son doesn’t have his insulin shots, he’ll die. I’m out of work, I’m almost 60 years old. What am I going to do?”

His face was white. Corsitto was doing his best to hold back tears. Jackie’s eyes revealed empathy, but her mouth and body were silent.

“I want that cocksucker dead!” He didn’t seem to have any filter explaining his demands. Jackie raised her eyebrows. “I’ll do any favor you ask of me Don Giovanni, you need to kill this man! You’re business has always stuck up for the middle class and this asshole is destroying people’s jobs, destroying their lives! Shoot him in the fucking face!” He was really angry now.

Jackie raised her hands out and tried to get him to calm down, “Richard,” she said calmly. “Is this man’s death going to help get your job back? Is it going to help your son’s illness?” Richard was taciturn. “Is it really going to make you feel better knowing that this man, however horrible he may be, is dead?”

Corsitto contemplated Jackie’s calm words of wisdom. He looked to Amy. The cute-girl, sitting there taking notes with her glasses on, made the man think of his own son. Jackie got the girl’s attention:

“Amy,” The brunette looked to her mother ready to answer any question she had, “Are there any jobs available at Charlie’s place?”

The young consigliere looked through her documents. Corsitto didn’t dare ask what they were talking about. After only a few seconds, Amy responded, “No, Charlie pretty much hired everyone.”

“Go get him for me, will you?” Amy got up and headed out the door. Corsitto looked to the godmother, a question on his face. “It’s an office job downtown,” Jackie answered, “Wall Street area. Charlie will get you somewhere. The pay won’t be very good, but you’ll get the best health-care coverage money can buy.” She began to write something down on a piece of paper. “You have a doctor right now?”

Corsitto stuttered slightly, “N-no, our family doctor left New York.”

Jackie didn’t look at him, but nodded her head. After she finished writing, she detached the paper giving it to him. A name and number were on there. Corsitto accepted it. Jackie stood up. The middle-aged man shadowed her movements. He was quite confused over what the mafia don was doing, but he was desperate and would do anything she asked.

“If there is something I respect,” Don Giovanni put her hand on the man’s shoulder, “It’s a man, or woman, devoted to his family… or her family,” she corrected herself.

“Thank you Godmother,” the man bowed his head.

Jackie laughed, “That’s not necessary. I’m not a Godmother, I’m a woman who cares about people, just as my husband did. You’ve worked hard all your life for your son, and you’re going to keep working hard. But it will be worth it. Many years from now, when you’re in the hospital bed, your son is going to be there for you holding your hand.”

Corsitto almost cried. However, Charlie came in with Amy.

“Yes Don Giovanni?” Charlie asked.

“Charlie,” Jackie let go of the man’s shoulder, “This is Richard Corsitto. He’s a good man, a hard worker, I want you to find him something down at your office.”

Charlie studied the man, and then turned to his boss, “All right Jackie,” he led the man out of the study, “All right, Richard what is your past experience.” The two of them disappeared. Jackie looked to Amy:

“Any word from Angelo or Rachel?”

“Yeah,” Amy removed her glasses, “Angelo’s on the train with her. They’ll be here in half an hour.”

“Good,” Jackie nodded her head. She sighed slightly, exhausted from a long week. Running a mafia had turned out to be a tougher job than she had previously anticipated. How did Marlon do this? “Do me a favor Amy, go to the dining room, make sure everything’s prepared.”

“Yes Don Giovanni,” Amy began to walk out.

“Amy,” Jackie stopped her, “You don’t have to call me Don Giovanni now, you can call me Aunt Jackie.”

Amy stopped and looked at her step-mother. She smiled and walked towards her. She planted a simple kiss on her cheek, “I’ll call you mom.”

Jackie smiled and hugged her adopted-daughter, “I know I say this all the time, but I’m very proud of you.”

“Thank you,” Amy walked out of the room.

Jackie locked the door and returned to her desk. At the bottom cupboard was something she cherished very much. She pulled it out and placed it on her desk. She stared at the object for a minute: a framed picture of her and Marlon. They were young, on the beach, Marlon with his arms around her. His dark black hair contrasted with brunette Jackie. His smile was so handsome. Jackie began to feel tears gathering in her eyes as she stared at the picture. She looked to her door and then back to the picture. She began to cry heavily thinking about her husband. “This will be our first family dinner without you.” Her eyes could not escape Marlon’s picture. Her head collapsed onto the desk as she wept. She struggled to catch her breath, “I miss you so much!” No sound could be heard in the room except for the very slight movements of Jackie’s chair, and her voice letting out emotions. She continued to cry alone in her office.

Suddenly the scene changed.

“What are you doing in my chair?” A deep friendly voice caused the woman to raise her head.

Standing next to her was a tall man with grey hair. His shiny slicked-back hair had touches of black still. With a slight underbite, his face was cleanshaven. A messy suit encased his semi-overweight gut.

A semi-younger Jackie, now smiling, looked to her husband: “What? I thought I’d take over as boss for a while.”

Marlon Giovanni smiled at his wife. Jackie stood up and wrapped her arms around Marlon, kissing him. The gray-haired man held his wife by the waste feeling the sweet touch of her lips. Something was on his mind. His eyes tired and baggy.

“What’s wrong?” Jackie looked at him concerned.

Marlon shook his head, “Oh, it’s Columbo!” Both spouses let go of each other. Jackie moved away from the desk to allow Marlon to sit down. He was quite tired. “I swear that man will be the death of me.”

Jackie nodded her head, “We all have to work with people we don’t like.”

“You know who I saw today?” Marlon looked up to his wife standing by his side.

“Sal?” Jackie smiled.

Marlon cringed, “Oh no,” he was joking around chuckling, “Not that bad.” Jackie joined him in laughing, “No, Frank brought his daughter with him, Julia. I haven’t seen her in years.”

“The blonde girl, right?”

“Exactly,” Marlon admired his wife’s memory, “Such a sweet kid. I mean, she’s not a kid anymore, but the way Columbo keeps her locked up, she’ll never grow up. She’s painfully shy.”

“That’s a shame,” Jackie shook her head.

Marlon backed his chair up grabbing his wife’s waste. He beckoned for her to sit on his lap, which she did. Her arms held onto him looking into the eyes of her beloved husband, “But she’s beautiful, obviously she got her mother’s genes; Frank is the ugliest son of a bitch I’ve ever met in my life. Seriously, if she wasn’t his daughter, I think she might be a nice girl for Angelo.”

The mother of the Giovanni family shook her head laughing, “I think Angelo would tear her apart.”

“But it would make a man out of him; calm him down. It’s like I always say: the president needs to be out chasing tail. Otherwise, he starts wars.”

Both of them laughed, “Out chasing tail, huh?” Jackie scolded him slightly.

“Well,” Marlon smiled, “Unless of course he’s got the most beautiful woman already by his side.”

The two of them engaged in a passionate kiss. Even at middle age, Marlon and Jackie acted like they were still teenagers. Marlon made a move for Jackie’s breast. Unfortunately, his wife moved his hand away. She broke the kiss:

“Maybe Julia would be a good friend for Rachel.”

Marlon sighed, “Rachel…”

Jackie dropped her arms and glared at her husband, “Marlon, she’s your daughter.”

The mafia boss wasn’t sure how to respond. Any words against his daughter would be met by hostility by his wife. Yet he couldn’t avoid the subject, “I know, but I wish she’d drop this apathetic goth-whatever attitude she’s had since high school and develop some kind of ambition. It’s no wonder she has no friends.” Jackie sighed as her husband ranted about Rachel, “I mean look at Amy, she’s so smart-“

“Marlon,” Jackie got up, “You know I love her, but all you ever talk about is Amy.” She began to imitate her husband, “Amy’s the best, she’s a genius, she’s the best Consigliere I could ever have-“

“But she is!” Marlon stood up, “C’mon Jackie, you know how smart Amy is. The way she remembers everything, her cool demeanor, her ability to find compromises that make everyone happy-“

Jackie began to grow impatient over her husband’s redundancy. She held her hands out and interrupted, “Marlon, Marlon,” the don listened to his wife, “Listen I’m glad you’ve been so involved in Amy’s life, but I really wish you’d care more about Rachel. Amy’s as much as daughter to me as she is to you, but Rachel needs love as well.”

Marlon took out a piece of gum. He had quit smoking a few years earlier and had replaced it with a gum-chewing habit. “I just don’t know what to do about her Jackie. The girl was practically born with a silver-spoon in her mouth. I gave her everything, I sent her to good schools,” He began to ponder over what he had done wrong in the girl’s life, “I mean I just don’t know.” Marlon stuffed the unwrapped piece of gum in his mouth, “Everytime I try,” his speech was still coherent as the gum was chewed, “To get involved in her life, she resents it.”

Jackie sat back down on her husband’s lap, “I think she needs to find her own way. You just need to be there for her when she needs you.”

Marlon hesitated looking at his wife. He kissed her again, “It’s your compassion that keeps me going all the time. You know you’d make a great boss to this family. If anything should happen to me-“

“Marlon,” Jackie whined, “Don’t talk about those things-“

The man muttered incoherently to interrupt her, “No-no-no-no-no, this is important Jackie. If God forbid something should happen to me. I want you to stand up for the family. Angelo’s not ready yet.”

“Marlon,” Jackie held onto her husband and spoke in a concerned manner, “I can’t be the boss of this family. Have you forgotten that I have a vagina? I mean shit, look at how much tension came up when you made Amy your Consigliere.”

He sighed, “Jackie, I have never allowed anyone to look down their nose at you, or Amy, or even Rachel for being a woman. Okay, it’s a male-dominated world. We all know that. But there comes a time when we all have to put our bigotry aside for business. Gotti always says ‘Business must move forward.’ Amy has been a godsend for our business, and so would you!”

Jackie was always moved by her husband’s words.

“A boss must be a man, or woman, of character, strength, and tact. Gender has nothing to do with character.”

The two shared an uncomfortable silence. Jackie, also having a way with words, simply stared at her husband. When she first met the man, a handsome man in his early 20s, she was slightly turned off by his typical mafia appearance and behavior; another Neanderthal. However, as she came to know the man, she discovered an intelligent gentleman with more profound ideas than his fellow peers. She had always been a scholar and could have a cerebral conversation with him. That was what turned her on more than anything else. Of course, at the time, he had a body like Sylvester Stallone. He didn’t look like that anymore, but he was still handsome for his age. Once again, Marlon’s intelligence was what seduced his wife.

Out of the blue, she began to kiss him passionately, in his own office. Marlon grabbed hold of her and returned the affection. Their tongues engaged in a heated, but affectionate, battle. Marlon still loved his wife, and she still looked great for her age. Unlike so many of his peers, Marlon set a standard for being faithful to his wife. Sure, he had done things he wasn’t proud of in the past, but he always remained a dedicated husband and father. He began to feel an arousal in his pants.

“Wait,” Jackie got up from the chair. Marlon silently pondered her actions until she went to the door and turned the lock. She smiled back at him, “I don’t want anyone to interrupt us… like Sal.” She returned to her husband’s side and threw off her jacket.

“Why do you have to keep mentioning him?” The boss laughed.

The two continued to make out in his own chair, Jackie now facing him, her pelvis inbetween Marlon’s right leg. They moved fast as the man’s hand moved up and down Jackie’s back. As he continued to squeeze her tongue with his lips, he began to unhook her bra. Jackie placed her hands on Marlon’s shirt-covered chest.

What followed was a haze of intense sexual pleasure in Marlon’s own chair. As the climatic hour came to a close, Jackie squeezed her husband as hard as she could, rubbing her cheek against Marlon’s clean-shaven face. Her eyes were closed.

They stayed closed.

But when they opened, Marlon wasn’t there. Jackie was hugging her own chair. She didn’t need to look around the room to realize she had been fantasizing again, or reminiscing, over her husband. She felt tears enter her eyes again. She grabbed hold of the chair like she was trying to make him come back to her. After only a few seconds, she wiped her nose with her index finger and stood up. Her pants had been undone. She buttoned them back up and fixed her outfit. Jackie’s hand picked up the picture of her and Marlon. One last look… a long look… now it was time to go back in the cupboard. She was now walking to the wall where a small mirror was. Grabbing a tissue from the box on her desk, she wiped her eyes. They were still slightly red, but it would disappear soon. The tissue was destined for the wastebasket. Jackie slowly walked to the door and unlocked it. Her head looked down to view her outfit. A long deep breath allowed the female boss to regain her composure and confidence. She now felt just the same as she did when she was talking to Corsitto, or even Columbo.

She opened the door and made her way into the house.


No missed calls, no missed texts.

Rachel put her phone back in her pocket, black leather gloves on her hands. She was not far behind Angelo who opened the gate to the Giovanni house. Both siblings were wearing leather jackets. Rachel closed the gate behind her and followed her brother along the pathway. The door immediately opened to reveal Vinnie Montana, ever a more frightening presence. He didn’t scare Rachel or Angelo.

“Hey Vinnie,” Angelo nodded his head, his sunglasses covering his eyes.

“Angelo,” Vinnie stepped aside and allowed his boss’ son to enter. “Rachel,” He nodded to Rachel. She didn’t say a word.

Once inside, Vinnie closed the door and stood at his post. Angelo immediately threw off his jacket, placing it on the coat rack. Rachel simply gazed at her old house. It was the same; it hadn’t changed. She almost expected her father to come down and pretend he was happy to see her, but she reminded herself of his absence.

“Now listen,” Sal said to Charlie on the couch of the living room, “I’m telling you, I saw the Montauk monster!”

“Sure you did,” Charlie replied sarcastically. His eyes were glued to the TV, but Sal would not allow it to deter his friend away from the story. Angelo and Rachel were making their way into the living room, but the Capos ignored the siblings.

“I wasn’t the only one, all right? Practically everybody noticed it as it ran across the beach.”

“You were there last night,” Charlie looked at Sal like he was an incredulous moron, “How many people were on the beach at ten o’clock in the evening?”

As Charlie and Sal continued their investigation, Rachel placed her leather gloved hand on Angelo’s shoulder: “Remember, don’t say anything about this to mom.”

Angelo simply nodded his head. Since they left Rachel’s house, the siblings had not said a word to each other. The older brother was still trying to absorb that his little sister was a lesbian, much less in a lesbian relationship with Julia Columbo. He was also perplexed that his adopted daughter had harbored the secret without confiding in him. Amy and Angelo were also business partners. A secret like this was something the two of them had to discuss as Underboss and Consigliere. Rachel had nothing to do with the family, and wanted nothing to do with the family. Perfect timing, because Amy came back from the kitchen to greet her siblings.

“Hey Rachel,” She smiled sweetly.

“Yo,” Angelo acknowledged her, wondering why she didn’t say hi to him. His eyes wavered. Rachel waved slightly, but didn’t say anything.

Amy’s eyes acknowledge her brother, but focused on her sister. “You wanna help me set up the table?”

Rachel was confused. She looked to Charlie and Sal arguing on the couch, “Why aren’t those two losers doing it?”

Amy knew the two of them were arguing about something, but had completely tuned them out. She ran towards her sister and took her by the hand. “C’mon,” she said in that stupid sisterly tone of voice whenever her cousin was around, “Get in here, let’s talk!” Rachel reluctantly walked with her cousin into the kitchen. “You can take your gloves off,” Amy commented on Rachel’s leather hands.

Angelo watched the two of them with resentment.

“Hey Angelo,” Sal beckoned the Underboss.

Angelo walked towards the couch with a sigh.

“Okay,” Sal turned back, still on the couch. Charlie was busy watching TV, “You’ve seen Ghostbusters?”

“Yeah,” Angelo managed to get in before Sal continued running at the mouth.

“That whacked out demon monster that chases Rick Moranis through Central Park? The dog monster that possesses him?” He began to imitate Moranis’ character, “Who brought the dog?”

“Yeah yeah,” Angelo interrupted with an annoyed tone of voice, “I’ve seen the fucking movie Sal.”

“Okay,” Sal smiled, “Well imagine that running across the beach in Montauk.” Angelo rolled his eyes; Sal was insistent, “Look, I know what I saw!”

“Sal,” Charlie finally spoke up, “If this monster really did run across the beach, why didn’t the news make a big deal about it?”

Sal pointed his finger to the grey haired capo; he had prepared his argument, “Because the government doesn’t want us to know about it. C’mon Charlie, you know they’ve been experimenting on animals out there for years. The press won’t let this story get out!”

“Right,” Charlie focused his eyes back on the TV, “You should tell that to Jesse Ventura, I’m sure he’ll do an entire show about it.”

“Maybe I will!” Sal spat back.

“I AM IN NO FUCKING MOOD FOR THIS!!!” Angelo’s loud statement came as a shock to both Charlie and Sal who turned to see Angelo walking away from him. Charlie immediately got up.

“Hey Ange,” Charlie ran to catch up to the son. Angelo did stop to listen to his father’s closest friend. There was a fire in the son’s eyes that could instill fear in the Montauk Monster’s heart. “C’mon, you know how Sal is?” He tried to joke around, “He’s an idiot!”

No response from Angelo.

“Yeah,” Sal got up, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean anything by it.”

“Is everything all right?” Charlie asked. He put his hand on Angelo’s shoulder.

Well of course, Angelo couldn’t tell them that his sister was a lesbian. He looked to the ground.

“C’mon Ange,” Charlie tried to cheer him up, “It’s your Uncle Charlie! You can tell me anything.”

“And your Uncle Sal,” the other replied.

“You’re only making it worse,” Charlie pushed his friend away without looking away from Angelo.

Angelo was much calmer. Charlie’s friendly efforts had succeeded. Still, Angelo would not betray his sister’s secret. Instead he brushed off Charlie’s hand and walked into the hall. His footsteps could be heard going up the stairs. Charlie and Sal looked to each other, not sure what to think of this. Had something bad happened? Was Angelo shaken by what had transpired the day before?

“I think,” Sal put his finger up, “He’s nervous about the-“

“If you mention that fucking monster again,” Charlie pointed his finger towards the taller man. He did not finish his sentence, leaving a taciturn moment between the two.

“Beast?” Sal finally spoke up.

Charlie rolled his eyes and walked into the hallway.

Rachel’s bare hands helped set the plates on the large dining room table. Amy had previously laid a beautiful knitted cloth down. Rachel was reminded of everything.

“How often does mom get to make her famous Lasagna?” Amy said grabbing some glasses.

She did stop when she came to her father’s chair. She almost put a plate there and stared strait at it. Amy picked up on her sister’s hesitation. She put the glasses down and went to comfort her:

“Are you okay Rach?” It was harder to tell what was on Rachel’s mind. Obviously, her father’s absence was a key factor to her lack of movement, but Rachel’s moodiness probably had a lot more to do with Julia. “Anything you want to talk about?”

Rachel closed her eyes and sighed, “I don’t know.”

“Is it about Julia?” Amy held onto her sister.

“Let’s just talk about it later, okay?”

That was about as much information Amy was going to get out of her sister right now. Amy nodded her head and said, “Okay.” She walked away and picked up the other glasses. She didn’t think much of it because Jackie walked right into the dining room. She looked as if nothing had happened. Neither Rachel nor Amy could tell that their mother had been crying over her husband a few minutes earlier.

“Rachel,” Jackie smiled staring at her daughter.

“Yeah?” Rachel nearly ignored her mother placing the last dish on the table.

Mother Giovanni walked towards her daughter with her arms out in front of her. Rachel reluctantly allowed her mother to hug her. Rachel did hug her mother back, but there was not much enthusiasm behind the embrace.

“I’m so glad you’re here.”

“Angelo dragged me here,” Rachel pouted.

“Good,” Jackie joked as she let go. Rachel quickly stepped away catching a mischievous smile on her mother’s face. She walked around and inspected the table. “I was just telling this man, Corsitto, how important family is.” She now looked at her adopted daughter, scratching her head, “I’d be something of a hypocrite if I couldn’t spend time with my youngest daughter, now wouldn’t I?”

Rachel wasn’t quite sure what to say, so she didn’t say anything. Jackie, so familiar with her daughter’s existentialist behavior, didn’t push her. The table was set, the early dinner would be served shortly. The matriarch talked to Amy:

“Amy, you can relax now. I’ll be in the kitchen.”

“You don’t need anymore help?” Amy offered.

“No,” She began to walk into the kitchen, “Spend some time with your sister. Use violence if necessary.” Jackie disappeared from her sights.

Rachel rolled her eyes. She already spent time with her cousin a week ago. Still, she’d much rather spend time with Amy than anyone else in the house. Amy simply smiled at her sister.

Most of the early afternoon was spent playing video games, mostly on their Wii. Rachel wondered what happened to Angelo’s X-Box 360, which he claimed got Red Ring of Death. Even as a mafia Underboss, Angelo was powerless to get any kind of cooperation from Microsoft. However, the three siblings, along with Sal, enjoyed a few games of Smash Brothers. Sal may have been having too much fun. When it was finally time for dinner, he didn’t want to stop. Charlie had to drag him to the table as Sal hung onto his controller for dear life.

At the dinner table, a notable presence was missing. Marlon’s chair was empty. No one sat in it. Jackie sat at the chair nearest to her husband’s, her usual spot. In fact, everyone was sitting in their usual spot. Angelo sat across from her, with Amy sitting next to him. Rachel sat across from Amy, next to Jackie. Sal and Charlie sat in the last two chairs across each other. Big Vinnie did not sit. He stood by a tall table. Certainly, the man tried to keep the myth alive that he never sat down.

“This is delicious mom,” Angelo said stuffing his face with Lasagna.

Everyone agreed with the boss’s son with the exception of Rachel, who had barely said more than ten words since she got there.

“So anyway,” Sal opened his mouth again, “I’ve been thinking, this Montauk Monster has got to be worth a fortune!” Charlie rolled his eyes. The siblings simply ignored him. “I say this week, we go out there, wait until he comes-“

“Sal,” Jackie snapped at him again dropping her fork. She was very irritated by her capo, “I just listened to whine about how you almost won Mario Brothers for twenty minutes-“

“Smash Brothers,” Sal corrected her politely.

“I don’t CARE!” Jackie yelled, “And I don’t wanna hear anymore about the god damned Montauk Monster.” She picked up her fork again, “Let’s talk about something else!”

Sal hung his head in shame. Mother Giovanni now looked to her youngest daughter:

“So Rachel, are you seeing anybody right now? Boyfriend?”

Amy and Angelo’s eyes widened upon hearing this. They stopped chewing and held their forks motionless. Rachel on the other hand kept eating as if it was no big deal, “Might be somebody,” was all she said with a mouth full of pasta. Her siblings were still literally on the edge of their seat.

Jackie nodded her head and smiled, “That’s good. You need someone in your life. Isolation is no way to live.” Rachel did not respond, much to Jackie’s disappointment, “So are you going to tell me anymore about this guy?”

Rachel shrugged her shoulders not saying a word. Jackie’s eyes drifted towards the other siblings. Both of them were staring and their mother and sister, but immediately went back to their meals concealing their faces. A look of disappointment came across her face.

“Oh I see,” she said, “You tell your sister and brother, but not your own mother!” Jackie messed up Rachel’s hair slightly teasing her. The raven-hair didn’t respond.

Amy looked to Angelo, a question in her eye. The brother nodded his head slightly, answering his sister’s question. The Consigliere was surprised to say the least.

“It’s all right Jackie,” Charlie spoke up with a friendly tone of voice, “Lots of girls are afraid to talk to their parents about stuff like this.” He put his fork down and wiped his face. Jackie gave the more intelligent capo her attention. “You know, I remember one time,” he put his napkin down and spoke to the table like he was giving a speech, “I was about 22, 23… I hung out with this girl, Penelope, an aspiring singer. Drop dead gorgeous, statuesque figure… kinda had an attitude, but it wasn’t so bad at first. She had a great voice too. One time her parents were in town when she was playing a gig. I went out to see her. She seemed unusually flirty with me, not that I had a problem with it mind you. After the show, I meet her parents. Nice people. Penelope introduces me as her ‘Boyfriend!’” Charlie re-enacted the shock he felt hearing this by raising his hands, “I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t even know we were going out!

“So long story short, eventually I walk her home. I try to lean in for a kiss, and she pulls away, looks at me like I’m crazy. I said, ‘I don’t understand, you told your folks we’re a couple?’ she said, ‘No, I just told them that, I didn’t really mean it.’ Well I’ll tell you, I was certainly heartbroken.” He raised his index finger as he continued his story, “Now here’s where it gets interesting… about a month later, I’m at one of her shows, and there’s this hot Asian chick in the audience. The two of us are kinda hooking up, we’re dirty dancing like you wouldn’t believe! I mean her tight ass is right on me, I’m feeling the sides of her…”

“Charlie,” Jackie interrupted him, “Is this really appropriate dinner conversation?”

“Anyway,” Charlie continued shaking his hands, “This girl and I are getting close. After the show is over, I ask for her number. She starts to write it down, but then Penelope comes up behind me and says, ‘Hey Charlie, this is Jean, my SPECIAL friend.’ I look at her in shock; suddenly it all makes sense. Penelope was a lesbian!”

Rachel’s eyes widened hearing the word uttered. Amy’s eyes looked to Rachel’s. Everyone else was still focused on Charlie.

“So it turned out that I was just a beard for her parents.”

There was a bit of silence in the room until Jackie spoke up, “So what does this story have to do with Rachel?”

Rachel, Amy and Angelo were on the edge of their seats again seeing if Charlie was about to make the connection.

“Nothing,” Charlie said, “I just felt like telling the story.” He went back to his meal.

Don Giovanni stared off into space in anger. The siblings all silently sighed in relief.

“Whatever happened with that girl?” Sal asked his friend.

“She’s dead.”

Rachel’s full attention was given as she stared at Charlie.

“Really?” Sal responded, “How?”

Charlie shrugged his shoulders, “I dunno, who cares?” There was a short pause before he uttered, “Fucking dyke!”

Jackie slammed her silverware down on the table, “Okay really Charlie!” She scolded him, “That’s enough!”

Charlie apologized profusely.

This talk of death was too much for Rachel. She couldn’t take it anymore, she threw her napkin on the table and got up, “Excuse me.”

“Rachel?” Her mother called as she watched her walk out the door with no jacket on. Angelo and Amy both knew exactly what was bothering her. Their mother looked back at the capo as she got up from the table angrily, “Really Charlie, that’s something I’d expect to hear from Sal, not you!” She began to walk towards the door. Charlie had a look of guilt on his face.

“Yeah Charlie,” Sal said to him, “You’ve got a big mouth!”

Charlie very slowly turned his head to Sal almost wanting to call him out for being a hypocrite.

Outside, Rachel pulled her phone out hoping to see a missed call from Julia. There was nothing. It was also freezing outside. The raven-hair didn’t care about the cold, she just wanted to hear Julia’s voice again.

“Rachel,” Jackie said walking out into the porch with a jacket. Rachel concealed her phone quickly. Her mother quickly put in on her daughter, “Look I’m sorry about all that. If you don’t want to talk about your personal life, you don’t have to.” Rachel did nothing but stand there staring at the cloudy sky. Jackie gave her daughter a hug. “I just,” Jackie hesitated. She was nervous, “I feel like I don’t know my own daughter anymore. I want us to be close.”

“We never were that close to begin with mom,” Rachel kept her head down.

Jackie was at a loss for words. Rachel was so cold, so distant, “I know well enough your father and I didn’t give you the same attention we gave to Angelo and Amy.” She spoke very slowly. Rachel’s eyes finally moved towards her mother’s, “But we can’t go back. Like Gotti always says, Business must move forward.”

Rachel closed her eyes, “Mom, all dad ever talked about was Gotti or Columbo or any of his other criminal buddies-“

“Rachel,” Jackie talked to her daughter in a more aggressive manner, “Your father may have done things outside the law, but don’t ever call him a criminal! He did what he felt he had to do to support his family. He loved all of us-“

“WELL HE DIDN’T LOVE ME!” Rachel screamed.

Jackie was shocked. She hadn’t heard her daughter scream like that in years. The mafia boss looked at Rachel with fear.

“Dad treated Angelo like a prince,” Rachel continued. Her voice was very loud, “The successor to his throne. And Amy… Dad tried so hard to make Amy feel like she was part of the family that he forgot that I existed. Yeah he helped her with her homework, took her wherever she wanted. He cried when she got her diploma. But where was he when I needed help? When I was struggling to do well in school, or wanted some kind of affection from my own father?”

The eyes of her mother looked as though they were about to break out in tears.

“I just,” Rachel calmed down, almost gathering tears in her own eyes, “Mom I was a loner all my life. I can’t get emotionally involved with the family again. I want to go out and live my own life with the people I choose to spend it with.”

It pained her mother’s heart to hear Rachel say she wanted nothing to do with the family. What could she do? There was a long uncomfortable silence between the two. Finally Jackie hugged her daughter again. This time, Rachel returned the affection equally. She still loved her mother no matter what.

“Whatever you want to do baby,” Jackie whispered, “Whoever you want to spend it with, I’ll support you. I love you.”

“I know you do,” Rachel whispered back.

Jackie led her daughter back into the house.


That night, Rachel couldn’t sleep. She was back in her old room, but it was much different now. The raven-hair had a lot on her mind, the conversation she had with her mother for one. But mostly, she thought about Julia. There was still no missed calls or texts from Julia. The girl had promised she would call her later. Had something gone wrong? Had her father gotten to her? She could picture Julia walking into her house, shortly after the blonde had left her own, being confronted by Frank Columbo. What did Julia say to him? What punishment did Columbo have in store for his daughter? Could she have squealed and told him everything? It was scary to think about. Snuggled in her sheets, Rachel was wearing her black leather gloves in bed. Something about them brought her comfort. She had spent almost fifteen minutes rubbing them all across her body, her face, other places… By now, she was less concerned with pleasure, and more with having someone to share the night with.

Rachel got up from her bed, covered in a tattered tank-top and pajama bottoms. She walked to the room next door of the second floor. It was pitch black, but she knew who was in there:

“Amy, you awake?”

A few seconds later, her cousin’s voice cut through, “I am now,” she knew who it was.

“Is it okay if I sleep with you?” Rachel’s tone of voice was very different from her usual cold demeanor.

Even in the dark, Rachel could hear Amy sitting up and turning to look at her. It was impossible to see each other, but the younger sister knew her cousin was a bit surprised by this request.

“Okay,” was all Amy said before Rachel walked into the room. She held her hands out in front to be sure where she was. Eventually her left hand felt the bed. She climbed in and lifted the covers. Amy turned back away from her. As Rachel pulled the blanket over her, she turned towards her cousin. Nothing was said between the two of them at first. It was a little strange. Amy felt her sister’s hands reach around her belly. The thick-skinned raven-haired girl had not appeared this affectionate in years. The brunette decided to enjoy it while she could. Amy reached to hold her sister’s hands… until she noticed leather covering them. “Are you wearing gloves?” Amy asked.

She could feel Rachel nodding her head in the affirmative.

Amy laughed and turned around to face her sister, “What are you picking up some habits from Julia?”

Rachel was taciturn for a moment before she opened up to her cousin, “She hasn’t called me back. I’m a little worried about her.”

This simple sentence was enough to worry Amy as well, but for different reasons. She reached for the light on the nightstand illuminating the room. Amy looked at Rachel, “What happened last night Rach?”

Rachel proceeded to explain all that happened the night before, forgoing some details. Once she explained her use of the words, “I love you,” Amy’s eyes shot wide open:

“You said ‘I love you?’”

Rachel nodded her head.

“Rachel,” Amy looked concerned, “You’ve never said ‘I Love You’ to anyone before. Did you really mean it?”

There was still a guarded shell surrounding the dark-haired cousin. There was no response, and Amy knew she wouldn’t be getting one out of her. If Rachel did love Julia, she was clearly ambivalent about it.

“You think Frank got to her?” Amy eagerly asked her sister, a look of fear in her eyes.

“I’m sure he did,” Rachel said, “I don’t what she told him, but he must know something is going on.”

Amy sighed apprehensively. She collapsed back onto the bed. Both girls looked up at the ceiling wondering what was the next move in this war over love.

“I do love her Amy,” Rachel said. Amy now looked at her sister who opened up in a way she had never before, “I mean I don’t know, maybe it’s just infatuation that will wear off overtime, but I’m really head over heels for this girl. I mean Julia is drop-dead gorgeous, she’s the sweetest little flower you’ll ever pick from the field, but at the same time, she has an ambitious side to her. It’s like this wild beast wants to break free, and without getting into details, she really did break free last night.”

Amy simply watched her sister unwind.

“God,” Rachel closed her eyes, “She’s so great. For the first time in my life, I really feel like I have someone. I mean I was lying in that room, I couldn’t sleep having nothing to comfort me but a pair of gloves.” She looked at her black gloves again.

Amy pondered for a minute. She was actually very happy her sister was confiding in her after all this time. “So you need someone to sleep with tonight?”

Rachel felt guilty asking her sister to take the place of her girlfriend for the night. It felt selfish, but Rachel couldn’t be alone tonight. “Is it okay if I stay with you tonight? Maybe tomorrow as well?”

“Oh Rachel!” Amy climbed on top of her sister speaking in a goofy way, “I’ve waited so long for this night!”

Rachel snickered at her cousin’s silly attitude. She felt Amy’s light body press against her’s. Suddenly Amy began to kiss her sloppily, “Oh I love you,” Amy mimicked a French accent planting kisses on Rachel.”

“Hey hey hey,” Rachel’s head tossed and turned trying to avoid Amy. For a college-graduate Consigliere, her cousin could be very silly from time to time. “C’mon! Get off of me!”

“Oh no you don’t,” Amy continued, “Make love to me Rachel!”

“Jesus Christ Amy,” Rachel grabbed hold of her sister, rolled over and pinned her to the bed. There was a really goofy smile on Amy’s face. After a few seconds, Rachel closed her eyes and laughed. Amy reached her head up and planted a kiss on her sister’s lips. Rachel got off and wiped her lips in disgust. “What is wrong with you?”

“Oh come on Rachel,” Amy laughed, “We used to do this all the time. Remember?”

“Yeah,” Rachel responded smiling, “When we were like ten!”

“Excused me,” Amy responded grabbing a hold of her sister’s gloved hand, “I remember a certain college girl shacking up with me in my own dorm room.”

“That was one night Amy,” Rachel said remembering the night she and her cousin shared her bed. It was right after Rachel confided in her about her sexual orientation.

“Rachel, you know I’ve always thought of you like a sister; like my best friend. And-“ Amy got tired of holding a pair of gloves. “Take these off!” Amy began to pull one off of Rachel’s hand.

“No,” Rachel rescinded her hands, “I want to keep them on.”

The silly air dissipated and Amy stared at her sister curiously.

Rachel herself was curious as to why she wanted to wear these gloves so much. Maybe in some weird way, they made her feel like Julia was still there.

“Okay,” Amy didn’t press her.

Rachel turned to her side to hold Amy. Her cousin returned the affection. “You know, out of everyone in my family, you’re still the one I’ve always felt closet to.” She felt her sister hug her tighter.

“You know I’m always there for you sis,” Amy said.

Rachel smiled.

Amy turned off the light.

[End notes: Hope this makes up for taking so long. Reviews are still appreciated.

P.S. Before anyone interprets that final scene with Rachel and Amy as some kind of incest scene, it’s not. The scene was meant to bring the sisters’ estranged relationship closer, which will become important in later chapters.]

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