Mafia Puppet

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66 | the queens of mobs

SHE GAVE ME a pregnancy box after asking me some questions.

"I know that your h-husband asked to do an ultrasound on you while you had fainted in Italy. Dr. Puddu emailed me your reports. The embryo is very, very tiny. You are lucky for it to be seen so early. It's rare but it could sometimes be seen. I want you to take a pregnancy test just in case though because sometimes it could be mistake in judgement," Mrs. Colombo said.

I pursued my lips. "Does that mean I may not be pregnant?" I hoped my fear wasn't that visible. I wanted to be a mother. I wanted to give birth and raise someone as my own. I wanted to give them all the love they deserved. I would fight the world for them.

She sighed. "Let's hope you are. Sometimes, ultrasounds so early can be wrong. I just don't want to take any risks."

My hand tightened around the pink box. "How many do I have to take?"

"Three," she instantly said. "Pregnancy sticks can also be wrong sometimes. It's best to be sure."

I stood up and fixed my black off shoulder sweater and grabbed my bag. My gun was in there and I wasn't going to risk such a deadly weapon with a stranger.

Mrs. Colombo smile wavered for a minute before she nodded. She was nervous. I could tell. Her hand had a slight tremble and she stuttered once in a while. I took nothing of it. Many people had that reaction around me being Antonio's wife.

I paused in my steps and turned around. She froze when she saw me watching her. "If you don't mind me asking, how long have you been working for my husband?" I asked in curiosity.

"Just a couple of years. Two if I'm not mistaken," she answered softly.

I nodded and threw her a small smile. Opening the wooden door to the bathroom, I stepped inside with my phone in my hand to send a quick text to Antonio.

"Don't scream," someone whispered, and a moment later I could feel the barrel of a gun against the side of my head.

I dropped my phone in surprise. I knew I should've followed my gut instinct and not have gone inside.

"Mrs. Giordano, I'm not here to hurt you. I just want to talk. Please," she begged. "And keep your hands up. I don't want to hurt you."

"Who are you?" I kept my voice steady and unwavering as I placed my handbag and pregnancy box on the basin and did as she said. If the woman heard my terror then she could use it to her advantage.

I could only see half of her face through the mirror with a mask and hoodie on. Who was she? Why did she look so familiar? Her voice was very similar to—

And then it suddenly clicked. "Angelina Bianchi?"

Confusion laced my tone. What was she doing here, in enemy territory? If I got this to Antonio then we could have the upper hand in the war but first I needed to know why she was here in the first place. Breaching our territory like this was a dangerous thing, or it could even be seen as an insult. If the Giordano Family couldn't protect its Donna then it would be seen as useless.

Family comes first.

I sighed softly when she nodded her head. Bringing her free hand, she pulled down her mask covering her face and black hood. Her dyed brown hair spilled out. I had to admit, the woman put a lot of effort in changing her look. She dyed her hair brown from natural blonde, tanned her skin, wore heavy mascara and even baggy clothes to hide her figure.

"How'd you know?" Suspicion echoed in her tone.

I shrugged my shoulders almost carelessly, feigning that I had let my guard down a bit. "Just a lucky guess. I remember us being the same height."

She didn't buy it obviously but she didn't comment and I wasn't going to tell her that her eyes gave it away anyways.

"What are you doing here?" I asked.

She furrowed her brows. "Why are you so calm? I literally have a gun to your head."

I was suddenly grateful for Antonio to have gone me through that stupid test in Italy. If I hadn't then right now my reaction would be very different and that was something that I wouldn't want our enemies to see even after my dead body.

"When you have an abusive, sick and twisted husband who puts an apple on your head and shoots, you learn to get used to the fear of death," I lied, looking into her eyes softly. That was Father, not Antonio but I needed some of her sympathy. I needed her to believe that I was a victim.

Pity and shame instantly filled her eyes. Angelina may have been a strong, ambitious woman but she also had feelings. I had googled her as soon as I heard about the war and I was happy to find that she came from a very sheltered family—a good family—where the father didn't abuse the daughter and where the daughter didn't have to pray for the safety of her mother. Angelina wasn't raised in the mafia so her ideologies and feelings were different. They were more sympathetic, making it an advantage. I knew Angelina must've pitied the other women. Her life was normal before she was married to Vincent Bianchi so obviously she only heard about it and seeing from Don Bianchi's gestures on that day at the party, he treated her right as well.

"I'm sorry, Mrs. Giordano," she said. "I'll remove the gun but please don't scream. I only want to talk, I swear."

I nodded. "Okay."

She pulled the gun back but still kept it in her hand. I slowly turned around so I no longer had to look at her through the mirror in the washroom.

"What do you want to talk about?" I asked, crossing my arms.

She licked her lips. "I don't want to beat around the bush. This war is not right and this war is not because of us!"

I shushed her. "The doctor is outside. She will hear you."

"Mrs. Colombo knows."

I furrowed my brows. "What?"

Bloody traitor.

Angelina sighed. "I somehow managed to contact her and she understood my dilemma. Mrs. Colombo doesn't want war so she agreed to help me with my plan. She has a family as well, you know, who is part of the mob."

I couldn't believe that she just ratted out her supporter. I needed to somehow manipulate her into telling me how many others of our men were with her.

Stefano.

Yes, he must be with her as well. He was the one overlooking all the safety procedures. He was the one who brought Mrs. Colombo here as well so he surely must've known that there were two people but he didn't tell me that. Angelina couldn't have ever gotten in the warehouse without anyone noticing.

I'm going to kill you, Stefano. You bastard!

"Angelina, say whatever you want quickly."

She sighed. "I just came here to tell you that Vincent didn't order to kill Raffaello. He wanted to contact your husband first, but before he could someone already killed him. Vincent had gotten the hint that his father's illegitimate family might have been in your territory and he wanted to contact your husband. You have to understand. Vincent didn't even find his sister's body yet. He has a right to be angry."

I frowned. The room suddenly felt cold as I realized what she was saying could be true. I didn't know whether to feel revealed that there won't be a fight within the Nostra Vita or stressed that things just got more complicated.

"Raffaello had the crown on his face. It was the sign of the Bianchi," I said. "He had the perfect reason to kill Raffaello. Don't think I'm supporting what Raffaello did. It was wrong and honestly he deserved a worse punishment than what he got but what happened was against the code of omertà and you know omertà means everything."

Angelina squinted at me. "Someone else could've drawn the sign." That was what I had initially thought and Antonio seemed to object. "All I want to say is that I don't want innocent people dying in this war of egos. Raffaello raped Vincent's half sister and then he killed her. He deserved to die and even you know it, but not at the cost of war. Your men, my men, they had nothing to do with it and if your husband doesn't stop the revenge pattern, things are going to get bloody very quickly!" she snapped.

My anger flared. "Why don't you tell your husband to call a truce? From what you are saying, Vincent knows that Antonio didn't have anything to do with what happened. If he had known, he would've punished his father himself."

"Vincent wanted to punish Raffaello and give him a slow, painful death! It was his right that was taken from him! Of course he is mad and—."

"—he's not listening to you," I completed in understanding. "You did try but you couldn't change his mind."

Angelina nodded. "That's why I need you to talk to your husband. Somehow convince him that neither of us are at fault here. The Bianchi and the Giordano were never enemies. We were always neutral and it needs to stay like that. If the Outfit finds us weak, they'll attack."

"Antonio would never apologize because it wasn't his fault. He knows that Raffaello needed to be punished but not by disrespecting the codes," I told her. Omertà was everything for Antonio. He was raised to enforce it, but now finding out that Vincent hadn't killed Raffaello and someone else did meant that someone was purposefully trying to bring war in between the two crime Families. This changed a lot of things.

"Vincent wouldn't apologize either and honestly I don't think either of them need to. Raffaello was the one we needed and he's dead. My husband and your husband are both angry. They can't think straight without their egos coming in the way."

"Why do you think I would help you? I barely know you, Angelina." I had the right to be suspicious.

Angelina shrugged. "You're right. I don't know you and you don't know me, but it is a risk I was willing to take. Mafia wars are bloody and deadly. I heard they last for years and I don't want my family dying in the way. You have a family too. I'm sure you don't want to live in the constant fear of not seeing your loved ones again once they step out of the house either and I've seen how your husband cares for you. You may not know what happened after you fainted in that yacht but I do. It was terrifying, especially when he threatened to have the yacht burned down if anything were to happen to you. We had to go reverse the yacht instantly so you could rest home." I flinched as she grabbed my hand. Her eyes begged me to listen, and I did. "Please try to convince your husband to consider calling a truce. I'll try to convince Vincent."

"Why should I trust whatever you are saying? How would I know Vincent didn't order to kill Raffaello?" I questioned.

"Because Vincent wanted to dish out that bastard's punishment himself. When we found out about Valentina's death and that bastard's involvement, we were in Italy. Vincent was in Italy. There was no way Vincent could've gone back to America just to kill Raffaello and come back within such a short amount of time. I have no reason to lie, Francesca."

"You just ratted out Mrs. Colombo who was your companion," I intervened. "How do I know that you are not trying to weaken us?"

"Because I came here for peace. Mrs. Colombo knew what she was getting herself into the moment she agreed to help me." She glanced behind me on the basin and smiled. "Not many people know you are pregnant and not many people will. You will be a mother soon and surely you don't want your child to be born in a tub of his father's blood. I can already see our future. Vincent and Antonio are both ambitious men. They would kill but never bow down. They are better together than enemies. Vincent wants to find out who took his revenge away from him and Antonio may as well want to find out who murdered his men."

"We could be on the same side," I said with realization.

"If we let go of our egos. Imagine how powerful the Bianchi and Giordano Family would be if we teamed up and then we could find out who really did this."

I licked my lips. "Fine, Angelina. I don't want war either but if you don't manage to convince Vincent to talk to Antonio then I won't be able to do anything either. Just remember that the Giordano Family will never bow down to anyone," I said.

"Thank you." She sighed in relief.

"You're pregnant, aren't you?" I guessed. With the way she spoke, she sounded like she understand my situation. Technically, we were both going through the same thing.

She smiled and placed a hand on her stomach. "I know what you are going through. I too want a good life for my child. I want to give them a good childhood without all of the pain and misery."

"I understand. This war will only bring more strife and chaos with time. It's best to put an end to it now."

Angelina nodded. "It's about time we do something. Gain a bit of control."

"How are you going to leave? And how do I contact you?" I asked.

"Through Stefano. I know you have figured out that he brought me here but trust me, he means no bad. He just doesn't want war."

Antonio wouldn't see it the same way and to be honest, neither did I. He had no right to lead me blind eyed to this even if he meant no bad.

"Let me deal with Stefano. Is there anything else I need to know?" I asked.

Angelina bit her lips. I knew she was holding back and if she didn't tell me everything then how could trust that she didn't have ulterior motive.

"I-We-I mean I think that Luciano Lambardi has a hand in this. If the Bianchi and Giordano get weak by war then he would be the strongest crime family," she pointed out.

I pursued my lips. "But how would he know where Valentina was? Unless there is a rat?"

Angelina shrugged. "I don't know honestly. It's just a guess."

"You need to leave, Angelina," I said while glancing at my watch.

She nodded. "Thank you for listening to me."

I smiled softly. "Thank you for risking your life and coming here despite knowing all the dangers you would be in."

Angelina smiled back. "I felt like you would understand. When I met you the first time, I knew you were a Donna who would put her prople first."

We flinched when a knock sounded on the door "Mrs. Giordano?" Mrs. Colombo's voice quavered with fear. She had every right to be scared.

I jumped in surprise before I realized that it was the doctor who was betraying us. She knew Angelina was here and now she was afraid of my wrath.

Angelina sighed out of relief. I instantly turned around and unlocked the door.

My eyes widened when I noticed Mrs. Colombo's tear stricken face and I instantly knew something was more than just wrong. Her whole body was trembling.

"M-Mrs. Giordano, a-are you o-okay?" she stuttered before breaking out into a loud sob.

I furrowed my brows but before I could say anything Angelina pushed past me.

"Mrs. Colombo, what's wrong?" she asked.

It all happened so fast. One moment Angelina was standing in front of me and the other her body was collapsing on the ground as a silent shot rang through the air.

Mrs. Colombo screamed in terror and I paled in fright. But I had to move quick. Rapidly grabbing my purse from the ground, I pulled out the gun and instantly pointed at the intruder only to freeze when I saw him leaning against the door with his arms crossed, holding a gun in his hand lazily.

And then, at last, he smiled. "Hello, love."
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