Fedelta Book 2: Hardball

Fedelta 2 Second Excerpt

Meanwhile across town, Detective Amato was back in his cubicle with the other detectives in the financial crimes unit.  It was his own personal nightmare, a desk job  he had to do from a shoe box but at least he had a job.  In the last year, he went from fugitive, to being welcomed back into the fold and it was all a complete mystery to him.  Well not really, he knew that someone called in a favor and he was let back into the force through the cat flap.  Amato managed to keep his nose to the grind and keep out of trouble but it was secretly killing him.  He wanted more and Amato wasn’t even sure if this is how he wanted to live his life.  Looking at spreadsheets and nitpicking over ledgers was not what he dedicated himself to at the academy.  It was pathetic, he didn’t even have a gun anymore.  The last time he discharged his firearm was when he was taking the marksmanship test.  He felt like a dog that had been neutered, a ball-less wonder.  Okay, maybe it wasn’t the gun that was bothering him so much.  Maybe it was the fact that he knew that the only reason why he was back on the force was because of Cassandra Fenetti.  The woman who he owed his newly resurrected career to and the woman he wanted dead for betraying him.

With blurry eyes, he did his best to read the rows and columns of financial data that graced the screen.  His job was to flag any inconsistencies and send the documents off to his supervisor.  Rinse and repeat, all the day long.  It was soul crushing for a man who was used of being out in the field taking risks and chasing bad guys.  He didn’t know how long he could take this, in fact, he had already started looking for another job in another town.  There had to be someone, somewhere, who needed a cop?  As his mind wondered off, his boss, Agent Nicholson, yelled from his office, “Amato, get in here.”  Startled, he nearly tripped over his own feet trying to exit his work station, God he couldn’t wait until this day was over.

Once in the office, he noticed Supervisory Special Agent Cohen from the Organized Crime Unit was sitting across from his boss’ desk.  “Shut the door,” Nicholson ordered.  Doing as he was told, Amato shut the door and approached the desk.  Pointing to a folding chair, his boss commanded, “Take a seat.” Once seated, Cohen addressed Amato, “There was a hit this morning on Columbus Avenue and 96th Street.  Double homicide, both males.”  On the desk was a folder which he reached into and pulled out several photos of two men in a vehicle, shot multiple times.  Handing them over to Amato, he asked, “Recognize, the vics?”

Stunned, Amato answered, “Yes, the male behind the wheel is Lucus Hobbs, driver for Stephano Rimaldi, the very dead gentleman in the backseat.”

“Right,”  Cohen said as he pulled out a tablet and handed it to Amato, “Press play.” Doing as instructed, a grainy surveillance video played the final moments of the unlucky occupants in the car.  “This is overkill” Amato remarked as he saw four men shooting at the vehicle.  He watched as the assassins fled the scene and the patrolman approached the vehicle.  Pressing stop, Cohen corrected him saying, “No, keep going.”  Not certain as to what he meant, Amato pressed play again and watched as Cassie appeared in camera range.  “Recognize the female?”  Cohen asked.

Hesitantly, Amato answered, “Yes, it’s Fenetti, Cassandra Fenetti.  She’s the fiancé of Rimaldi.”

“Interesting,” Cohen said staring at Amato.  “Those of us in homicide would appreciate any assistance you can offer in our little investigation.”

“Of course,” Amato replied.

“We’re looking for the female suspect,”

“Suspect?”

“She couldn’t have done this.”

“No, we don’t believe she’s the mastermind of the hit, but she did threaten an officer with a weapon and we would like to talk to her.”

Chuckling, Amato answered, “Good luck finding her, let alone getting her to talk.”

“Yeah about that,” Cohen said sitting back in his chair, “We want you to lead the fugitive task force.”

“Wait, what?” Amato exclaimed, “This is the wrong way to approach the case.”

Smirking, Cohen looked at Amato, “It’s not your call.”

“I’ll provide intel but I’m not leading any task force.  It’s a waste of time.”

“Why?”  Cohen asked.

“Because she’s probably halfway to Timbuktu already.”

“Are you saying you can’t do it?”

“I’m saying she’s one of the richest women in this town and it will be a million times harder to trace her than she was before.”

Questioning his loyalty Cohen asked, “Why should we believe you?  Word is you had a relationship with Fenetti during your excursion away from the force.”

A rush of heat hit Amato’s face from the insinuation that he was protecting some girlfriend.  Nonetheless, he took a deep breath and as calmly as he could, Amato responded, “I stepped in to protect a witness when our agency was unable.  There was never any inappropriate relationship between myself and Miss. Fenetti.”  He kept referring to her by her last name to keep his distance emotionally but also to show that he was not on friendly terms with her which, at that point, he wasn’t.

“If you don’t trust me, then find another agent to do the job.  Problem solved,” Amato said, calling Cohen’s bluff.

“I don’t like your attitude, no wonder they put you in the shitter.”

“Hey!” Nicholson interrupted, “I run this shitter and right now I’m flushing you right back to OC (Organized Crime).”

Without a word, Cohen stood up and gathered his tablet as well as his folder and walked out of the office.

“God, I hate those guys.” Nicholson said with disgust.

‘Yeah, me too.”

“You’re dying to get back in OC ain’t ya?”

“Yep,” Amato said as he stood up.

“So what was all that, I’m not the guy for the job shtick?”

“I’m gonna make them beg.”

Rolling his eyes, Agent Nicholson said, “Get the hell out my office.”

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Fedelta Book 2: Bitter Destiny

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Warning: Language

Stephano quickly returned with her shawl and his jacket which he draped over his arm.  Fortunately for them, the gala was held on the first floor of the hotel so Cassandra didn’t have to endure the elevator.  God only knows what would happened there.  As they got to the front door, their Bentley Bentayaga was already waiting for them.  While Stephano opened the door, she noticed a man who looked out of place, he was wearing faded jeans and a white t-shirt.  With a cigarette hanging out of his mouth, Cassandra figured he was just of the hotel employees, a poorly dressed one at that.  Nothing to look at here she thought to herself until, he gave them the side eye.  Okay, so he was a badly dressed hotel employee with an attitude problem.  However, Cassandra’s gut told her there was something more to this perceived slight but she wasn’t feeling well and figured she wasn’t thinking straight.  Maybe it was the wine?

As the driver opened the passenger door, Cassandra happily got in while Stephano followed.  Once they pulled away from the curb Cassandra started to relax knowing they were only ten minutes from their apartment.  When they pulled up to a red light, Stephano remarked about the lack of traffic and just as he made that statement, the car behind them turned up their high beems, blinding the driver.  Cassandra’s heart stopped as she realized what was going on.  Looking at Stephano, she grabbed his arm but before anything came out of her mouth, several men approached the car from the front as well as the side.  Two of them pulled out guns, and started shooting, “Oh God!” she gasped as a hail of bullets started showering the car.  In an act of utter selflessness, Stephano pulled her down to the floor and covered her with his body.  Though it only lasted seconds, it felt like an eternity for the shooting to stop.  Shaking to her core, Cassandra said not one word as she heard footsteps approaching the car.  Hearing the driver’s door open, she heard a raspy voice announce, “Yeah, they’re dead.”  Listening as the others approach, Cassandra had to fight the urge to shake.  Closing her eyes, she controlled her breathing and lied as still as she could. “Good job fellas,” said one of the men.  This voice she recognized, it was Danny Marchesi, Stephano’s best friend.

“Dump the car and the bodies in the river,” Danny instructed one of the henchmen.  However before they could follow through, Danny groaned “Aw shit!” Listening closely, Cassandra heard several footsteps running in the opposite direction of the car.  As she remained motionless, she heard a car slowly pulling up and to her relief it was an elderly couple who stopped when they saw the driver slump over the wheel.  Thinking he was having a heart attack, they called 9-1-1 and within minutes, a patrol car arrived.  When the officer assessed the scene he knew immediately he was not dealing with a motorist in distress, this was a shooting.  Cautiously, he approached the car, and as he inched closer, he drew his weapon just in case the perpetrators were nearby.  Observing the driver, he nudged him with his hand and asked, “Sir, are you alright?”  After two attempts to communicate with the driver, he stepped back and noticed a black heap of clothing in the back seat area.  With his weapon still in hand, he opened the back door and realized it was yet another male.  Again, he repeated the proper procedure and tried to make contact with the male.  When he nudged Stephano, Cassandra popped out from under him.  Pulling back in fear, the officer nearly fell backwards into the street.  Drawing his weapon on her, he demanded, “Hands in the air.”  However, instead of complying, Cassandra pulled out her Glock 26 and yelled, “Fuck off!”

As the officer took cover behind his car, Cassandra got out of the passenger door and without taking her eyes off the guy, she retreated to a nearby alley.  Calling for backup, the officer could only watch as Cassandra disappeared from his range of vision and when assistance finally arrived, it was already too late, she was long gone.

 

 

Fedelta Parte 9: Closure

Fedelta Part 9

 

As an ER nurse took Cassandra’s vitals, a doctor was sedating her, in order to prep her for surgery.  In this foggy state, Cassie saw her life flash before her eyes, people, places and events all merged into one big final trip down memory lane.  Just as she was about to let go, she heard a voice saying, “I don’t think this one’s gonna make it” and suddenly fear struck her heart.  She still had a job to do and a promise to fulfill.  Reluctantly, Cassie fought her way back to the physical world and when she did, the pain was excruciating.  Though the doctor managed to remove both bullets, she was in so much agony she found it hard to breath.  For the next 12 hours Cassie lapsed in and out of consciousness.

When she finally started to wake from the anesthesia, she found it hard to put sentences together.  It was important that she talk, she had to warn Amato he was in danger but all she could do was babble incoherently.  Upon seeing this, the nurses gave her more medication thinking she was in pain.  This went on all night long.

Meanwhile, Detective Amato spent the night making a call to a cop he knew worked for the Cosimo family but he wanted nothing to do with Amato.  So he reminded the young patrolman, “Listen Lieutenant, if you don’t want your wife finding out where you spend your Fridays, you’ll send the message,” he said before hanging up on the now very scared cop.

Immediately, Amato started digging up old files he had encrypted in his own computer just in case he needed them one day.  He had tons of dirt on Dominic as well as several other city officials who were on the Cosimo payroll and he was ready to play his hand, if it got to that point.

Just as he was considering his options the phone rang, knowing who it was, Amato picked it up and heard Dominic’s lackey say, “The boss will see you at Xavier ‘round three.”

“Done” Amato responded and hung up.

At 3 o’clock on the nose, Amato showed up to Xavier Park in Brooklyn.  Entering the gates, he saw none other than Dominic Fenetti smoking a cigar and chatting up some red haired floozy at a bench.  Upon seeing him, he smiled at Amato and dismissed his fidanzata (girlfriend) with the snap of his fingers.

“There are some pretty babes in BK, I should come here more often.”

“You never learned from your hero Capone, did ya?”

“I’ll have you know Brittany is an accomplished dancer,” Dominic said with a sleazy wink.

“Yeah, I’m sure she makes more than the other puttanas (whores) at the strip club,” Amato said taking a step closer to Dom.

Feeling uncomfortable, Dominic warned Amato, “No funny business, I got guys everywhere.”

“I know Dom, you never went anywhere alone as I recall.”

“Where did I go wrong with you?” Dominic asked. “I gave you everything, money, cars, women, and you piss on it like a God damn rat.”

You gave him everything?..” a voice said coming from behind the trees.  Turning around, Dominic was stunned to see the big boss, Carmine Cosimo in the flesh.  The older gentleman made a signal and immediately Dominic’s own men came out of hiding with their guns turned on him.

As if that weren’t enough, Cassie emerged from the circle of goons like a ghost from his worst nightmare.  Looking worse for the wear, Cassandra’s head was still heavily bandaged.  Having fought her way back from death, she discharged herself against her doctor’s wishes in order fulfill an oath she made to her father.

Unsteady on her feet, she held on to Carmine’s arm, “Ya see Dom, papa taught me some things; one, loyalty is never guaranteed, and two, always hide the evidence,” she said taking a manila envelope out of her long coat.  Dumping  the contents on to the ground, out came a ledger Dom was hiding from the boss along with several pictures of him with rival crime bosses.

As Dominic’s face went pale, Cassie went on, “You cooked the books Dom, and when papa found out, you had him executed.  Your own damn father!” Cassie said with disgust.

Shaking and sweating, Dominic knew his time on this earth was up.  “You can’t believe her, she’s crazy!” he said pleading with Carmine.  However, Carmine just rose his hand silencing Dominic.

As their final act of revenge, Cassie joined Amato, and turning their backs, they slowly walked out of the park.  As they exited the gate, they heard multiple gun shots but never looked back.

When they got to the car, Amato saw Cassie losing her color.  “What are you crazy leaving the hospital like that?  You’re going back.”

“Doesn’t matter, I kept my word,” she said as she slid down the side of the car and to the pavement.  Amato sprung into action and got her in the car and called ahead to the hospital.  Seeing he didn’t have that much time, he raced through the streets nearly hitting a delivery truck.

Pulling up to the emergency room parking lot, he kissed Cassie on the cheek before several orderlies put her on the gurney.  Watching as they disappeared into the hospital, he had this awful feeling that this was the last time he’d ever see her again.

Author Bio:

Rachel Rueben is author of the bestselling YA novel “Hag” and “The Eternal Bond Series” both available on Wattpad. To keep up with Rachel, you can sign up for her frighteningly entertaining newsletter here.

10 Questions and More with Author Karen Vaughan

Today on the Fantastic Blog Hop Tour we have a regular on board, Karen Vaughan.  Author of Dead Comic Standing, Over Her Dead Body and Daytona Dead and new pod caster on the Red River Writers Network.  Let’s see if we can find out a little more about this very talented woman.

1073283_10151707685041668_1316799290_o1. Are you a fan of the genre that you write in?

Karen: Yes I grew up reading Hardy boys and Nancy Drew. I love light mystery like what I write and romantic suspense along with thrillers and crime drama.

2. Are you a pen and paper author or do you use a computer to write?

Karen: I go from whats in my head to the laptop. However there are times I do take notes and add them to the story.

3. If you couldn’t write what would you be doing instead?

Karen: Welfare bum with tin cup? No I would probably do some kind of work to help the less fortunate.

4. What about this business surprised you the most?

Karen: How much the authors support each other. I thought it would be more cut-throat and competitive.

5. Do you blog?

Karen: Yes, not religiously but when an idea comes to mind I do blog about it.

6. Are you on social media?

Karen: Do you enjoy it? Yes I live on Facebook, the others not so much.

7. The house is on fire, which do you save, your laptop or your book collection?

Karen: Laptop—I can find other books later

8. The publishing industry is changing, do you think this is good or bad time for authors?

Karen: Yes good for independent authors to forge their own path and not depend on the big houses. We do have to do our own marketing but there is the opportunity to learn so much.

9. How do you promote your books?

Karen: Social media like facebook and Goodreads and word of mouth. I also hired the services of a publicist for 2 months and it’s been helpful.

10. Your editor says you have to kill a character, which one would get the ax? 

Karen: Maybe Gibbons that would create a conflict for Laura as they were good friends and to have to get used to a new detective who might not be so nice.

Daytona Dead Character Interview:

Front cover of daytona deadCHAT WITH DAVE MEECHAM

The cub reporter  for The Daytona Beach News journal Callie Springford sits down with convicted police officer to get the straight skinny on what went down during the Killer T. Ford Roadkill rampage.

WHY ARE YOU IN JAIL?

I let my brother in-law Killer T. Ford talk me into being his eyes and ears at the police station. I was privy to a lot of info that I should have told my supervisors about with regards to his involvement in the identity theft ring and the hit and runs.

WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO COME CLEAN?

My wife Annabelle made me see that her brother Duane aka Killer T. was nothing but trouble and he could very easily drag me down the same dark path to hell that he was going on. I decided my life with her was more important than keeping that spoiled little prima donna happy. I had tremendous guilt over the whole break in thing at the Fitz hotel room, getting Rueben to nail Cronk, and getting the kid killed by that bastard.  I might be doing time here but I can stand a bit taller having down the right thing.

WHAT WAS YOUR CAREER BEFORE THAT? I was a desk clerk at the local police station as I had been demoted from my job in Forensics up in Dade County.

ARE YOU EASILY INFLUENCED BY OTHERS?

Unfortunately I would have to say yes. Killer T kind of bullied me into doing a lot of dirty things including trashing that nice couples room.

IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING IN YOUR LIFE WHAT WOULD IT BE? Not be such a wuss.

COUNTRY MUSIC OR ROCK?  Depends on my mood I like either

DO YOU HAVE A NICK NAME? At work they called me Barney Fife now the guys in here call me Dead Meat

FAVORITE COLOUR? Definitely not orange.   Hey do you think this jumpsuit makes me look fat?

WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WHEN YOU GET OUT?  I am taking computer courses so maybe I can get a job at Best Buy when I get out.

DO YOU HAVE REGRETS?  Yes definitely and if I could I would undo all the things I did to hurt innocent people I would do it in a minute.

IF YOU COULD GIVE A ROOKIE COP ONE PIECE OF ADVICE WHAT WOULD IT BE? Stick with your principles and don’t let the lure of easy money make you do stupid things.

Author Bio

About Karen Vaughan:Author Karen Vaughan

Karen Vaughan lives in Peterborough Ontario with her husband Jim and a four legged off spring named Sugar. She is the mom of a 22 year old daughter and four grown step children and a 2 1/2 year old grandson named Ike. DEAD COMIC STANDING is her second novel. Her first novel DEAD ON ARRIVAL garnered praise from friends, family and online gamers.  She also enjoys doing crafts and other hobbies. Her latest book is called OVER HER DEAD BODY is the second book to DEAD ON ARRIVAL. DAYTONA DEAD is the third in that series which is soon to be released.

Character Interview: Daytona Dead By Karen Vaughan

For those of you not keeping up, I’ve been participating in the Fantastic Blog Hop Tour and have been featuring this week author, Karen Vaughan author of Daytona Dead, Dead Comic Standing and Dead on Arrival.  Today, we’re gonna have a little fun and talk to one of her characters to see just how she feels about her circumstances in crime/murder mystery.  Enjoy!

Character Interview: Daytona Dead By Karen Vaughan

Interview with Laura Hamilton-Fitz

What is your biggest fear?Daytona Dead By Karen Vaughan

LHF: I fear that one day all my amateur sleuthing is going to catch up with me. Gerry or I could get really hurt or Gerry could get sick of me playing Nancy Drew and leave.

What would you give up everything to have?

LHF: Children

What is the biggest mistake you’ve ever made and are you going to be able to rectify it?

LHF: Hmm that’s a hard one but getting to involved in the Leena situation in OVER HER DEAD BODY. I could have been Killed and it nearly ended me and Gerry.  I tried to lay off but again death found is in DAYTONA DEAD.
What food would you never eat?

LHF:  Entrails- I don’t do liver, tripe, tongue or kidney –makes me want to yack!

You’ve dressed to impress. What are you wearing?

LHF:  Me a fashion maven? I am most comfortable in a pair of sweats and a t-shirt.

What one thing have you found unattainable thus far in your life?

LHF:  Motherhood and a winning lottery ticket.

What is about to change for you?

LHF:  I am not sure but Gerry and I are trying for that all important baby. The clock is ticking.

Where do you live? (and is this your only life?—for para stories only)

LHF:  We live in the north end of Toronto in Canada. We just moved from Scarborough.

When did you live?

LHF:  Why did your writer pick this time in history? (if this is not a contemporary story)

Who are you? (ie: warrior, demon, doctor, mechanic):

LHF:  Building superintendant for a high rise building  and amateur sleuth as it turns out. Some even call me a corpse magnet.

What do you see when you look in the mirror? (more than physical description, please)

LHF:  Someone who is trying to find herself and who is insecure.

Who do you hate and why?

LHF: Not really hate but I do have a few people I would be happy not to see again.  Tiny Todd Crawford(DEAD ON ARRIVAL), Leena Dubois Brown(OVER HER DEAD BODY) and Killer T. Ford (DAYTONA DEAD)

***

Previously posted articles about Karen and Daytona Dead:

https://rachelrueben.com/2013/04/01/karen-vaughan-breakout-star/

https://rachelrueben.com/2013/04/02/an-excerpt-from-daytona-dead-by-karen-vaughan/

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About Karen Vaughan:Author Karen Vaughan

Karen Vaughan lives in Peterborough Ontario with her husband Jim and a four legged off spring named Sugar. She is the mom of a 22 year old daughter and four grown step children and a 2 1/2 year old grandson named Ike. DEAD COMIC STANDING is her second novel. Her first novel DEAD ON ARRIVAL garnered praise from friends, family and online gamers.  She also enjoys doing crafts and other hobbies. Her latest book is called OVER HER DEAD BODY is the second book to DEAD ON ARRIVAL. DAYTONA DEAD is the third in that series which is soon to be released.

An Excerpt From Daytona Dead By Karen Vaughan

Yesterday, I interviewed Karen H. Vaughan for the Fantastic Blog Hop Tour and today, I’ll be giving you a peek into her latest book, “Daytona Dead.”  For the next few weeks I’ll be interviewing and sharing excerpts with you from some of the most amazing authors so stay tuned!

Daytona Dead By Karen Vaughan
Available on Amazon and Barnes & Nobel

Plans for the next day included getting some of our pictures saved on a CD, so I could clear the card in my camera. So I figured I might as well develop the ones from Lou’s camera.  I was at a Kodak kiosk doing just that, when I felt the hair on the back of my neck prick up, so I whipped around to find the creepy cop behind me.

“Ok, this is getting old really fast. Do you have an odd fixation with following tourists around? Or are you just being a jerk?”

“Mrs. Fitz, dear, no need for a meltdown. I just happen to be at the same photo kiosk as you “

“Ya, I bet!”

“Oh my, someone is paranoid.” he laughed, “Maybe you really are guilty of that guy’s murder and used the road kill scenario as a cover up. Maybe, you staged it to divert attention. I may have to take my thoughts on this to the detective on the case.”

People were staring at us and backing away out of the store. The police officer was in his civvies and couldn’t do anything at that point.  He was grinning evilly, thinking he was getting the better of me.

I stood straight up, “Too late Fife, we’ve been cleared of all charges so don’t even go there.”

His weasel-like face turned bright red, “Quit calling me Fife, my first name isn’t even Barney! It’s Dave, Dave Meecham. With that he turned and stomped away from the kiosk.

Okay, so now my would-be stalker had a name, should I need to use it?  I continued to copy the photos from my card and printed off the ones from Lou’s SIM card.  I went to pay for my pictures and the clerk looked at me oddly.

“What do I owe ya?”

“Um, six dollars.” She was clearly rattled by clash with the creepazoid.

It’s okay, dear, I’m not going to rob or kill ya. There’s no need to be nervous. My friend who just left is highly delusional…thinks he’s a cop or something. Most people have a thing for FBI or the CIA. He just wants to be at home in Mayberry with Andy, Aunt Bea and Opie”

The counter clerk laughed, took my money and moved on. I walked out with my photos and CD and Lou’s hard copies.

When I got back to the hotel I was still angry at the nerve of Dave Meecham implying we still might be responsible for Lou’s death.  This made me angrier as no one should be pissed off on their honeymoon. What did the little dip wad know anyway. He had been at the scene and saw the condition of Lou’s body. In my shock I hadn’t even realized that Lou had been shot after he was killed by the car. Maybe one of those guys in Lou’s pictures was Meecham.  I shook my head. I was going to turn what I had over to the authorities and back way off. I was on a mission to enjoy myself with Gerry, not get dragged into a homicidal mess.

Copyright © 2013

***

Author Karen VaughanAuthor BIO:

Karen Vaughan lives in Peterborough Ontario with her husband Jim and a four legged off spring named Sugar. She is the mom of a 22 year old daughter and four grown step children and a 2 1/2 year old grandson named Ike. DEAD COMIC STANDING is her second novel. Her first novel DEAD ON ARRIVAL garnered praise from friends, family and online gamers.  She also enjoys doing crafts and other hobbies. Her latest book is called OVER HER DEAD BODY is the second book to DEAD ON ARRIVAL. DAYTONA DEAD is the third in that series which is soon to be released.

Fedelta

Fedeltà

By Rachel Rueben

Fedelta By Rachel Rueben
By JetSetModels via Dreamstime.com

This picture was begging for someone to tell its story.  So here it is, Fedeltà (which means “loyalty” in Italian)—enjoy! 

Cassandra sat in the corner of the restaurant as Armand made a B-line to her table.  Throwing his cell phone on the table, it bounced around until Cassandra clumsily picked it up.  On it she saw a pic of her with a boss from a rival family.  “What, I can’t turn my back no more Cassie?” he said as though he were hurt by the betrayal.  Cassandra just sat there stone faced while Armand ranted on about loyalty and family.  From an untrained eye one would have thought Cassie was petrified, anyone else in her position would be.  Armand’s body count spoke for itself, family, friends, rivals, all met their end at the whim of this monster.  Paranoid and delusional, he imagined himself another Al Capone.  He even went so far as to hang Big Al’s portrait in his office at the construction company he was fronting.

And just like his hero big Al, Armand, considered nothing and no one off limits.  Not even Cassie’s father, Ernesto Fenetti, his most loyal general wasn’t beyond reproach.  Like a fool, her father bought into the family loyalty spiel that Armand spat.  As Cassie went over this in her mind, she slipped her hand into her purse and felt for her glock.  Though repulsed by the object, she forced herself to securely gripe the gun.

As Armand turned his back to her, he reached into his waistband saying, “I don’t wanna do this Cassie, but I ain’t got no…”

Before Armand could even finish, a light flashed from Cassandra’s chair followed by a deafening boom.  Through the bottom of her tiny, pink Chanel purse, a nine millimeter bullet fired directly into his chest.  Cassie watched in disgust as Armand clutched his chest, “Bitch!” he whispered falling to his knees breathless.  This time without hesitation, Cassie stood up, took her gun out of her purse and put another bullet in his skull.  She watched hypnotized as Armand’s body shook on the diner floor, expelling his final breath.

Quickly she gathered her purse, and Armand’s phone then, made her way back to the kitchen of the diner before his goons filed in.  As Cassie fled the scene, she smiled to herself knowing she had done the one thing no one dared to ever do.  Making it out of the alley, Cassie looked both ways to make sure the coast was clear.  When she turned the corner, she saw the street totally deserted, slowing down, Cassie started walking normally as though nothing happened.  Watching her back, she made her way down the street until she disappeared into the foggy mist.  That night, Cassandra left town a marked woman.