My Sweet Jenny,
Be a dear and deliver this letter to Pa. You must deliver this by hand to Mr. Calvi. I promise I’ll give you more of your favorite licorice when you return. And I won’t tell your sister.
Pa will see you soon.
I stared at the white envelope on the table, my heart about to drum out of my chest.
I picked the letter up in my hand, dismissing Pa’s absence for now. I examined the address. Upper East Side, Manhattan. It didn’t look familiar to me.
After pulling out my phone, I entered the address to give me directions to this place.
″Twenty minutes?″ I whispered to myself and let out a huge sigh. I’ve gotten out of my apartment and threw away some items in the trash. I stopped and glared at the Welcome packaging from Julliard.
Being twenty-three and finally getting accepted to Julliard in the dance program as being a fulfilling dream. However, the coast and financial aid wouldn’t cover the assets that I need in school and it’s killing me how they want me in school.
I would love to, but unfortunately, I declined.
Without hesitation, I place the package near the counter in the kitchen and left my apartment to deliver this for my father.
I was now walking along the streets of Islington Hill, chewing the licorice. How could I resist a bribe such as this licorice Pa bought for me? He knew it was my one weakness and he used it to his full advantage. I was surprised my teeth weren’t covered with holes yet, what with the amounts of sweets I ate.
Cory Calvi, as stated on the address, was part of a well-established suburb in Upper East Side, Manhattan. If it weren’t for the naked Zeus, the Greek god statue sitting in front of the huge fountain, with only a loincloth covering his private part, I was sure I’d have missed it altogether.
″Wow,″ I whispered, looking at the statue, admiring its artwork.
“What business do you have here?”
What? Who? Where? Did someone just speak?
I looked up and saw a camera pointed in my direction.
Oh, the speaker. I stared at the speaker and said, “I’m sorry. I was just admiring the statue.”
“Any other business?”
Swallowing another piece of licorice, I replied, “I’m looking for Cory Calvi. Could you please tell me where it is?”
“This is Cory Calvi.”
“What business do you have with us?”
I swallowed the last remaining licorice and composed myself. “I’m here to deliver a letter on behalf of my Pa, Mr. Stone. It’s to be handed to Mr. Calvi. May I see him?”
A few minutes passed before the voice spoke again. “Come in. The gate will open in three seconds. Then walk along the white brick footpath and knock on the door three times. The front door will open.”
What’s this? White brick road and knock on the front door three times? What am I, Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz?
I have a great sense of direction, thank you very much. I never get lost. But I did what the gatekeeper told me to do.
I knocked on the door three times. Then I stood back while the door took its time to reveal the inside of the property.
From the outside, it looked beautiful, but on the inside, it was majestic.
I notice a couple of buff-looking men who stood to the side, staring at me through black sunglasses. They almost frightened me, standing there like statues. They had their arms behind their backs, looking quite intimidating.
“Hi,” I managed.
The men didn’t respond but just glared back at me. Suddenly, two more men walked past me. One came to stand right in front of me and stared down.
“You’re the one with the letter?” he asked.
“Yes,” I replied promptly.
“Come this way. Boss is ready to see you.”
“Boss? Is he Mr.Calvi ?”
Me and my big mouth. It just wouldn’t stop yapping when I was nervous. Then again, I was quite excited. I was eager to find out who the millionaire owner of this estate was. Maybe some old man in his sixties.
I was led to another stylish room with more guns out on display.
″You guys are dismissed,″ a deep voice echoed through the room and they all left me without hesitation.
It was him.
Younger than I thought he looked.
His curls were midnight black and his eyes were dark brown, framed by graceful brows. His skin was tanned. He had prominent cheekbones and a well-defined chin and nose.
He looked down for a moment, pouring himself a drink and bringing the alcohol to his lips.
He was wrapped with a luxurious robe with his name on the front in cursive writing. Cory sat down on a chair and cleared his throat several times.
″Name,″ he said, sharply.
″Um, Jen... Jennifer Stone. You have, a lovely home.″
″Give me the letter,″ he demanded.
I almost swallowed my tongue. Cory Calvi. What does Pa have to do with this young man?
I gave Cory the letter and smiled up at him again.
I didn’t know what to do with myself. He was busy reading. It wasn’t like I could talk to him when his eyes were skimming across the page, his lips pulled tight. I busied myself with the display of more guns on the wall cabinet.
The sound of a fist meeting a table alerted me, and I shifted my attention to him. His eyes were burning fire.
“You’re very brave.” Giovanni still held my gaze, and then he started rubbing his lips.
“Brave?” I questioned him, eyes moved over to those pink lips.
″You should tell your father, next time if he wants a little vacation to do it accordingly.″
″You heard what I said, I’m not repeating myself.″
″I’m not understanding--″
″- Are you stupid?″ He interrupts. ″What do you think this was?″
“Excuse me?” I stated chest thrust forward to show I wasn’t intimidated by him. “I’m not stupid.”
“If you’re not stupid, then why have you entered a mafia den all alone?”