Chapter 36 - Nonno story time
“How far along are you?” Meredith asked me when we reached her house.
“33 weeks tomorrow.” I answered her while getting out of the limousine with my aunts’ help.
Meredith hurried to open her front door and ushered us inside, quickly guiding me towards her sofa where I plopped down as if I haven’t been sitting down for the last few minutes. Everyone sat down and a tense silence filled the air, no one knew what to say or how to react, except for Blaze, of course. My little mischievous daughter thinks that this is the perfect moment to ‘exercise’. My bladder feels like it’s going to explode!
“Excuse me, where is the bathroom?” Hazel quickly got up and offered to take me there. She and aunt Jully ended up having to help me up when another Braxton shit hit me strongly, not letting me get up on my own.
“Are you ok?” Hazel whispered to me while taking me to the bathroom.
“As best as I could be.” I whispered back through paths of pain.
“Aren’t you afraid of going into labor so early?” Hazel whispered nervously while looking between my stomach and my face.
Hearing her question I froze. I had never thought about that. All this time I had my mind set on Blaze being born on October 16 but what if she comes early? I have nothing prepared for her.
And how will I protect her? While she is in my womb I know no one could hurt her but the moment she comes out there is no guarantee that she will always be safe. If Igor got word that she was born he would never stop chasing us, never stop sending men, never stop attacking until he got her. Until he got us.
I can’t let that happen!
“Until today I had never even pondered that possibility but one thing I am certain, the moment my daughter is born I am going to my father’s den and seek protection for her. I will never willingly let anything happen to her.” Hazel had a soft glint in her eyes after hearing my speech, she offered me a gentle smile and squeezed my arm softly before guiding me the rest of the way to the bathroom.
Ten minutes later, when we arrived back in the living room, Doctor Izelda was already there waiting for me.
“Good afternoon, Sage. I heard from your aunt that you required a check-up so, let’s go ahead and let me just feel your stomach real quick before we go to a bedroom and I do the rest of the check-up...” Hazel stayed by my side for support and doctor Izalda kneeled before me, feeling all over my stomach. She wore a concentrated expression while touching my belly but the longer she pressed and touched the more her expression slipped and a frown took its place.
“Is everything alright?” I anxiously asked doctor Izelda after seeing a worried glint pass through her eyes.
“Just a minute to confirm...” She muttered, still frowning. My blood pressure spiked with fear after hearing her words, my aunts’ worry, and Isaack chewing on his nails didn’t help my nerves either.
After exactly forty-seven seconds Doctor Izelda finally got up but her frown remained.
“What’s wrong, Izelda? Don’t tell she is going into labor?” My aunt quickly asked, beating me to the punch.
“Sage, your daughter has dropped into position, I need a bed, preferable a private bedroom to be able to access you quickly before we have a little Blaze screaming her lungs out.”
What the hell...
Doctor Izelda left me in a state of shock. From the corner of my eyes, I could see Miss or Mrs. Meredith leave the room on a run, like a headless chicken, and my aunt talking on the phone with someone. Hazel was hugging my side and Doctor Izelda was on my other side helping me walk towards the room Meredith was guiding us to. Isaack was white as a sheet of paper while still sitting on the sofa, the noise around me was none existent but I could swear by everyone’s expressions that there was a lot of talking going on, my head felt like it was floating and suddenly my body felt heavy.
“Crap! She’s about to pass out from the shock, quickly bring me a glass of water with sugar, that should make her body react and stop her from fainting.”
The next thing I know something is being pressed onto my lips and then I don’t remember anything else.
It felt like years when I finally started hearing sounds around me. My eyes were burning from being open for so long and a splitting headache had started to form in the middle of my head. Slowly I blinked my eyes to try and diminish the burning and when my gaze was focused again, my aunt Stella was in front of me with a hand on my forehead.
“Aunt Stella... What are you doing?” I lazily asked her, feeling some weird drowsiness try to pull me under its effect.
“Izelda! She’s back to herself again!”
Memories started resurfacing and immediately worry took over me. My first instinct was to touch my stomach and thankfully my daughter was still there, or at least the big bump was still here.
“Sage?” My attention snapped to Doctor Izelda in an instant. “Oh, good, you’re back to yourself. We need to talk.” I nodded my head and carefully sat up.
“Blaze dropped into position, Sage. I gave you a shot to stop the contractions.”
“Thank god!” I interrupted her. At least now I know I will not give birth to my daughter today. What a fucking scare this child gave me! She will give me grey heir before my thirties.
“But be prepared, Sage. Normally when the baby drops into position they are either born on the day or in between one to four weeks after. Blaze may come at any day now.” God damn because this makes everything so much easier!? Damn you Ziva Blaze Sinner and your stubbornness, why couldn’t you hold on until October? You tiny little shit. You little troublemaker! You still need to grow! You’re still too small! Why are all the Sinner kids so problematic!?
~ Later that night ~
Meredith gave me the room where Doctor Izelda examined me. It used to be Hazel’s room but other than some of her clothes being here she usually bunkers with Isaack. They always have sleepovers twice or thrice a week. Ever since Hazel was 8 and Isaack 9 and they got used to sleeping in the same room so Hazel told me to keep this room.
Right now it’s close to 2 a.m. but I can’t seem to fall asleep. And this time it’s not because of Blaze. She’s actually been pretty calm since my freak-out moment this afternoon. I kept on tossing and turning until I eventually got too tired of doing that and decided to call nonno (grandpa). I think it’s time I get some answers.
The phone rang for a while and I almost lost hope that he would pick up, but then he did and I couldn’t be more relieved.
“Chi è questo? (Who’s this?)” Nonno’s (grandpa) irritated, sleepy and gruff voice asked through the phone’s speakers.
“Old man, I can’t sleep and I want some answers so you better be in a storytelling mode because I’m already tucked in and waiting.” I quickly dish out my snappy demand and get comfortable on the many pillows surrounding me.
“SAGE!? CRIST GIRL! WHERE ARE YOU?” His reaction is loud and irritating but I still answer non the less.
“Watch your tone NONNO! You may be old and going deaf but I’m not! There’s no need to leave me hard of hearing. And I’m safe.” I protest angrily at him, feeling my ears ringing.
“You never lose your charm, do you? Always rude like your father.” Lorenzo grumbles and I heard Leane’s sleepy voice mumble something unintelligent at grandpa.
“Quem sai aos seus não degenera. (who takes after their own does not degenerate <-- rough translation.)” I answer him back, knowing that he more than probably doesn’t know what I said.
"Ugg... Just like your mother, always sassing the Italian folks with your Portuguese proverbs! Anyway, what story do you want to know?"
"IT WAS YOU WHO GAVE HER A HEART ATTACK! I KNEW IT! HAHAHA HA!" Abuela's exhilarating laugh resonated through the phone, she is obviously delighted by this tiny little bit of knowledge but it's too early to be dealing with her 'brightness. I just want grandpa to tell this bedtime story and hopefully, get me to sleep!
Ugg! Here I go again with these stupid mood swings...
"Yeah, yeah, now off with the story. I want to know why that woman despised me with a passion even before knowing my name." I heard grandpa sign and his mattress groan before he huffed.
"Mrs. Donini is a complicated case." He mumbles, obviously bothered with the topic of conversation.
"Complicated is my life and I don't act like her!" Grandma giggled in the background and I smiled to myself in the dark, pleased to have been able to amuse my abuela (grandma).
"*Scoff* You're impossible Sage Sinner." Nonno (grandpa) complained, his heavy Italian accent coming out.
Looks like I'm aggravating the old man...
Eh, too bad that I don't care!
"Just like I'm 'impossible of existing' now move on with the story, nonno (grandpa)." I drawled out sarcastically sweet. Grandpa mumbled some kind of profanities under his breath and exhaled loudly.
"Mrs. Donini was my eldest brother's high school sweetheart."
"The heck!? This one I was not expecting." Nonno ignored my interruption and went back to telling the story in detail.
"My parents died when I was eight years old and, as tradition, the eldest son takes over the mafia. My older brother Vito became the Capo (boss) at the age of eighteen and left Greta, his girlfriend, behind in hopes of keeping her safe and away from danger." Poor grandpa... I didn't know he had an older brother. And who is Greta? Perhaps that is Mrs. Donini's first name... What a stupid question, Sage! Of course, it must be Mrs. Donini's first name.
"When Vito broke up with Greta or Mrs. Donini as you know her, he couldn't tell her about the mafia so he made up an excuse that he had to take care of me and our other brother Cipriano and for that, he couldn't have distractions such as a girlfriend. Greta was devastated and left, angry at Vito. Two years later when Vito was twenty he was killed by an enemy mafia. Cipriano had just reached the age of eighteen when Vito died but he refused to take over the mafia, leaving the job to me. But a ten-year-old cannot rule so my grandma, who was already ninety-four at the time took custody over me and ruled the mafia until I turned eighteen. But, 'what does this have to do with Mrs. Donini hating us?', you might ask." Damn right, I was going to ask! I already learned quite a bit in just this five minutes or so of conversation but sleep is catching up to me and if grandpa does not finish his story soon I may fall asleep before hearing the ending and I don't want that.
"Come on, nonno (grandpa)! Don't stop now. I want to know the rest before falling asleep!" Grandpa gave me a tired chuckle in response and went back to telling his tail.
"On the day of Vito's funeral, Greta was there. The journals of that time had connected Vito's death with a criminal affair going on between the Hell Sinners and the Russos and Greta connected the dots. She went to the funeral and confronted my grandmother. My grandmother had a nasty temper and when Greta confronted her she was mad. Very mad but with so many cops swirling around the place she could not kill Greta so she threatened her. People of that time called my grandma a witch, everyone believed that she had powers due to being so old and so when grandma cursed Greta to live with bad luck all her life everyone believed her."
"So, she hates us because your grandmother cursed her?" I asked nonno, feeling a little uncertain with the course things had taken.
"Oh, it was not just because of that. As you know Greta is a teacher and she happened to catch me in one of her classes. She took her frustration out on me and because I remembered her as the nasty woman who spoke badly to my grandma, I pranked her. She didn't like it and left me alone for a while, that was until she got married and one week later her husband died in the hospital. Greta was convinced that it was my grandma's curse affecting her so she decided to curse me as well. And Leane and I counter-attacked her, we blew up her car and her punishments book and our little war has been going on since then." What a weird story. I didn't have anything to do with any of what grandpa spoke about but because I carry Sinner's blood inside my veins that automatically makes me the enemy to Mrs. Donini, how fitting. I roll my eyes at my thoughts and start to feel them try to drop shut, heavy with sleep.
"And this is Mrs. Donini's story." Grandpa finished and I close my eyes, ready to succumb to sleep.
"Good night nonno (grandpa), good night abuela (grandma)." I mumble and pull the cover more comfortably over me.
"Good night, Sage." They answer and I end the call, falling asleep right after.