Fedelta Book 2: The Search For Cassandra Fenetti

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Warning: Language

In the meantime, Cassandra Fenetti was awaking refreshed in a soft memory foam mattress.  Not wanting to get out of bed, she commanded her Echo system to turn on the television to the morning news.  As the picture turned on and as it became brighter and more clear, she saw her own image reflected back at her in the form of a composite sketch.  “Ugh!  Shit!” she sighed, as she sat straight up in her bad.  Rubbing her eyes with her hands, she squinted to see the image again, just to be sure she wasn’t dreaming.  Unfortunately for her, it was no dream, her face really was on the morning news.  Running her hands through her hair she knew she had to act fast.  Sliding out of bed, she stumbled to her closet, where she found her trusty box of wigs, inside she found a dark, but short brunette wig.  It was a far cry from her usual look, but nonetheless, she began pinning up her hair, to at least attempt to make the lace front look as natural as possible.  As she applied her makeup, she thought to herself, this was happening too soon.  She knew how the cops operated, and this wasn’t their style.  To share their investigation with the public showed they were desperate or considered her a real threat to society.  Maybe this wasn’t the cops?  Maybe the Feds were on this already?  Otherwise, how could they have ID’ed her so quickly?  Despite all of the questions, Cassandra knew she had to act quickly, if she was going to succeed at escaping.  Luckily, her only trip out of her safe house would be to the bank but there, they had many security cameras.  So she had to look and act as normal as possible.

Blocking out the “what do I do?” voice in her head, she focused on the mission at hand.  Cassandra had to keep telling herself that everything was still okay.  As she carefully finished putting on her makeup, she said to herself, “This is only a glitch, nothing’s changed,” and she meant it.  Her determination was no less shaken nor was her courage diminished.  She would get out of this town and not only that, she would return to exact revenge.  Whoever was trying to ruin her life, was going to be made an example of.  This thought was the only thing that kept her going.  As she searched the room for clothes, Cassandra looked around and thanked her neurosis for prepping this safe house.  When she decided to go back into this life, she made sure that she did not make the same mistakes that her father made.  He was so stuck in the old ways that he never saw the new threats on the horizon.  He treated La Cosa Nostra like a religion, while others only saw it as a business opportunity.  Cassandra would make this life give her back everything it had stolen but in the meantime, she had a date at her local bank.  Giving herself the once over in the mirror, she made sure the wig was straight, the clothes were mute and her appearance didn’t raise any eyebrows.  Once she was satisfied with her appearance, Cassandra grabbed her gun, and her favorite purse then headed straight out the door and right into the path of danger.

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Fedelta Book 2: Putting In An Order

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Warning: Language

As Cassandra slept, Amato and Jimmy were reuniting in Central Park after losing their tailgaters, “Hey long time, no see, asshole,” Jimmy joked.

“Come on, we gotta keep moving.  You dumped your car, right?”

“Yeah, it’s all the way on 9th and Broadway, probably getting towed as we speak.”

“You’re brilliant, for an old fucker,” Amato said, knowing the police will be searching that area for them, Jimmy just bought them at least half a day.

“Cohen doesn’t have the resources to track you and Fenetti plus the assassins.”

“I hope you’re right, goomba” said Amato uncertain.

They both walked to the other side of the park and to the train station on 3rd.  He had a plan to get another car and Jimmy probably wasn’t going to like it, which is why Amato was keeping it a secret.  He didn’t need Jimmy throwing a fit, not now.  Walking down the street, they came across an old fencer who ran a chop shop parading as an auto part store.  The moment Jimmy saw Amato’s right foot cross over onto the property he exclaimed, “Whoa, whoooa, whooa, you got to be crazy!”

“Come on, we need a car, and you know Desi’s got one.”

“Yeah but he’s a weasel.  Who’s to say he won’t snitch and get us killed?”

“He’s not snitching on nobody, just trust me.”

Reluctantly Jimmy followed Amato into the shop and cringed at the sound of the bell on the door.  “Nice ambiance, assholes,” Jimmy said under his breath as he batted the stupid chain that hung from the door.

“Behave,” Amato warned.

Holding his tongue Jimmy played along with this farce, while his gut told him this was not going to go well.  Hearing that there was a customer in the shop, the owner himself, Desi Fostino, appeared in a dirty apron and even dirtier hands which he was trying to clean off with a red rag.  Though he looked like you’re typical middle aged, Italian man, he was one of the most notorious car thieves in New York.  “Can I help ya’s?” he asked without bothering to look up.

“Yeah, I’d like to place an order for a 2014 La Crosse, no frills, just candy apple red.” Amato replied.

Snickering, Desi, continued to get the grime out from under his finger nails without bothering to look at them, “I dunno what you’s guys heard, but I don’t play tha…” Amato stopped him by grabbing his grease rag.

“Hello Desi, remember me?” Stunned, all the old man could do was nod.

“Look I don’t want any trouble, we run a clean business here,” he said trying to appeal to Amato.  Snorting Jimmy wasn’t having any of it, “You neva, run a clean business Desi, just look at ya.”  Not wanting to scare Desi too much, Amato rephrase his request, “Desi, I need a car with new plates, can you do it?”

“Ye, yeah!” he said shaking in his sneakers.

“Good, what ya got in inventory?”

“Three Corollas and a Kia Optima.”

“I want to borrow the Kia for a few hours, is it ready to roll?”

Nodding his head yes, Desi said, “I’ll go get the remote.”

“Thank you.” Amato said, while staring him dead in the eye intentionally making him uncomfortable.

As they waited, there was a television on the wall broadcasting the 6 o’clock news.  To their dismay, they were already broadcasting the murder as well as the security footage.  As their day went from bad to worse, they even posted a composite sketch of Cassandra Fenetti, along with her name, age and last known whereabouts.  She was labeled a person of interest as well as a suspect brandishing a weapon at police.  “Geesh!” Amato said angrily.  Jimmy watched stunned by the carelessness of the local police.  “This isn’t gonna end well,” he declared.

Rubbing his jaw, Amato looked like he was ready for a fight.  Slamming his fist onto the counter, he said through gritted teeth, “Son of a bitch!  They shit all over this investigation just like I knew they would.”  Hearing the banging of Amato’s fist, Desi came out of the back in a hurry, “I’m hurrying as fast as I can,” he said doing his best to get them out of his store. Throwing the remote to the Kia on the counter, Desi expected a look of contentment however instead he got an icy stare from Amato who scooped up the remote.  Sensing the anger, Desi took a step back and said, “It’s out in the back, please, just go.  I don’t want anyone seeing this, they’ll think I’m a rat.”

“Too late,” Jimmy answered, not able to resist.

Following Amato out the front door, he inexplicably turned his head and saw Desi turning off the television.  It was too little too late, the damage had already been done.  Amato was now on the warpath, and he knew nothing would stop him from finding Cassandra Fenetti, even if it was only to rub Cohen’s face in it.  This was becoming personal, but when it came to Cassandra and Amato, it was always personal.  He felt like a third wheel, but he had to look out for his friend and colleague.  There was bad blood in the ranks when it came to Amato.  There were still some who believed he couldn’t be trusted, considering since his return, seven agents were arrested for having ties to the Cosimo family.  This benefited only Fenetti, and her new crew the Alunni, she and Stephano had to purge and consolidate their power.  What better way than to get rid of all the back stabbers and make a public statement?  Amato looked like a foolish lover who got tossed like a piece of trash in the end by an ambitious mafiosa.  It wasn’t right and Jimmy wanted to help restore Amato’s reputation not to mention his career.  He watched too many people get steamrolled by Cohen and wanted to put an end to it.

As they walked around the building to the back, Amato reached for his gun as they turned the corner.  Following suit, Jimmy reached for his as well.  Creeping slowly around the corner, they were both relieved to find nothing but a white Kia Optima parked in parking lot amongst some other beat up looking cars.  Using the remote Amato disarmed the alarm system, and unlocked the doors.  Inspecting the car for defects, he listened to the hum of the engine to be sure it purred just right.  He also looked at the plates on the car and they were New York license plates to his satisfaction.  “Smiling, Jimmy said, “Looks like Desi delivered.”  Amato simply nodded his head, still pissed off from the unwelcomed media coverage.   Jimmy could see the intensity in his gaze and knew he was already planning the next move.

Fedelta Book 2: Making The Next Move

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As Amato and Jimmy made their plans, Cassandra was making hers.  Desperate for cash, she knew she had to start liquidating her assets if she wanted to escape.  Doing her best to stay one step ahead of the cops, she grabbed her spare phone, and started looking up the number to her local bank branch manager.  With her fingers crossed, she called and explained that she needed to withdraw all of her money.  “In cash?” the manager asked rather surprised.

“No, in puka shells,” she retorted, “Of course in cash!”

“Well Ms. Fenetti, we’ll need at least 24 hours.”

“Why?”

“We’re low in cash,” the manager explained.

“You’re a bank, how is that even possible?”

“Just bear with us Ms. Fenetti. We’ll have all of the funds tomorrow.”

“Urgh!  Okay, I’ll be there at opening.”

“Alright, see you then.” He said in a sickening sweet tone.

Hanging up the phone the manager place a call to his supervisor, the Vice president of the branch, “Steve, it’s Marty, sorry to bother you but Fenetti called.  She’s coming by tomorrow morning at opening.”

“Thanks Marty, I handle this one myself.” He said.

He wasn’t quite sure why the President of the bank would want to personally handle the closing of an account, but Marty, simply agreed to have his admin send the files to his boss’s computer.  That was one less account he had to deal with, and since it was the end of the day, he grabbed his jacket along with his brief case and left for home.

In the meantime, Cassandra had to figure out where she was going once she had the cash.  Placing a call to her favorite airline, she chartered a plane to the Cayman Islands.  Once she got off the phone with them, she booked a hotel room at the Hilton.  Nonetheless she still wasn’t done, Cassandra had to make sure no one would be able to track her, not the cops, and certainly not the killers.  She already knew that the cops were checking phone records and looking at security footage.  As if that weren’t enough, Cassandra would have to change her appearance as well as get a new identity.  Placing a few calls to some of the best forgers in New York, she put in an order for a new driver’s license as well as a passport.  The ones she had were old, and looked outdated.  Sending him a recent photo of herself, she got the okay from the forger and they worked out a deal.  She regretted not staying on top of these things, she knew better, being the daughter of a mobster and the fiancé of another.  This life was unpredictable and deadly, Inpatient she mumbled to herself, “When will you ever learn?”.

This was only phase one of her plan, she still had to keep herself alive and evade police for the next 16 hours.  Cassandra had to lay low, if she was going to survive the night.  Starting the engine, she made a journey to her old hideout, a safe house of sorts.  Making her way through Little Italy, she made it to an old pizzeria.  Parking down the street, she took out a key and went to the back and climbed a set of rickety stairs to a tiny apartment.  Cassandra figured she would be safe here since she and Stephano rented it under the table.  There was no paper trail and they were careful to not tell anyone about it.  Despite all that, she was still paranoid and took out her glock.  Quietly she went from room to room to be absolutely sure she was alone.  When she was able to let her guard down, Cassandra put the gun away and went straight to the closet to find the clothes she had purchased for a time like this.  There was an array of outfits, some of them were shabby chic, while the others were high end luxury brands.  There was no way she could dress as she always had.  Too many people knew her style, and if her instincts were right, the cops were already creating a profile of her, if they hadn’t already.  It was a hot day and she still wasn’t feeling well, so Cassandra decided to take a shower and call it a day.

Collapsing on the bed, she made herself comfortable and clutched a pillow.  Fighting the urge to cry, she refused to think about what happened and focused instead on what needed to be done.  Going over the plan in her head, she went over  every possible scenario again and again like a mantra of sorts.  After all, Cassandra needed something to believe in and her plan was that thing.  She would succeed, she would pull herself out of this mess.  Confident, she slowly drifted to sleep, safe for now.

Fedelta Book 2: Cooking Up Plans

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Warning: Language

While Nicholson was trying to warn Amato, he was sitting in front of his television watching the Mets take on the Toronto Blue Jays.  In his black leather recliner, Amato ate his dinner and began to decompress from his encounter with Special Agent Cohen.  In the middle of the stretch he heard a knock at his door.  Cautiously, he opened the door just a crack and to his surprise, it was his old buddy Jimmy Schiavone. Opening the door all the way, he saw the look on Jimmy’s face, “Uh, oh!” Amato exclaimed, knowing something was up.  “Lemme guess, Cohen sent you?”

“What, no hello or how ya doin’?” Jimmy exclaimed.

Rolling his eyes Amato played along, “Okay, hello, how ya dooin’?” he said poking fun at Jimmy’s Long Island accent.

“Prick!  You mockin’ the one guy that single handedly saved your ass?”

“Single handed, eh?” Amato caught him exaggerating.

“Okay, I had a little help,” Jimmy confessed as he walked into Amato’s apartment.

Closing the door behind him, Amato muttered, “This is gonna be a long day.”

Seeing he was watching the game, Jimmy sat down on the couch and asked, “What’s the score, yo?”

“Mets, 6-2”

“Just in time,” Jimmy said making himself at home.

Returning to his chair, Amato sat back and waited for it.  Looking over at his plate, Jimmy asked, “Hey what you eatin’ over there?”

“Vegan eggplant parmesan.”

“What the fuck is that?”

“What, eggplant parmesan?”

“No that other shit you said.”

“What, vegan parmesan?”

“Yeah, what’s this vegan shit I keep hearing about?” Jimmy asked curiously.

“It’s means no animal or animal by-products.” Amato answered.

“So what the fuck is on the eggplant if it ain’t cheese?”

“You know, soy or cashew.”

“Brotha, ever since you and Irene broke up, things haven’t been the same for you.  I ain’t neva seen an Italian put fake cheese on his food,” he said snickering.

Throwing his towel at Jimmy, he asked the big question, “Okay, Jimbo what’s up?”

Looking visibly uncomfortable, Jimmy clasped his hands as if he was trying to come up with the right words.  As he looked about the room, he finally returned his gaze to Amato, then confessed, “It’s Cohen, he’s requesting your personnel file.”

“So what?” Amato responded, unimpressed.

“You don’t know this guy Amato, he’s a total dick.  He’s sacked more than one guy in his day and it looks like he’s got his sights set on you.”

“Thanks for the warning Jimmy, but I’m a big boy and can handle myself.”

Putting his hands up Jimmy said, “I’m just the messenger, Nicholson wanted me to warn you.”

Just as he said that, the crowd on television erupted in cheers as the Mets shut down the Blue Jays.  The ending was anticlimactic but Jimmy seemed to be thrilled that the game ended in a win.  Getting up he announced, “I’ll see myself out, just remember to watch your back from now on.”

“It’s the only way I know how to roll.” Amato reassured him.

When Jimmy left, Amato was alone to contemplate whether or not he would bother participating in this case.  After all, Cassandra Fenetti wasn’t necessarily in need of his help.  She was probably on the other side of the planet, if she were smart.  However something told him, that this wasn’t the case.  Feeling it in his gut, he knew she was nearby and if Cohen approached her, she might blow his head off.  So all in all, if he kept his hands off the wheel, Cassandra would take care of his Cohen problem.  Smiling, the idea did appeal to him.  Nonetheless, there was piece of him that needed to see her again.  Amato wasn’t sure if it schadenfreude, or if he actually had feelings for her.  No matter the case, it was stupid of him to come running when she was in trouble, not after she two-timed him.  So what was he going to do when he saw her again, say I told you so?  Having dragged his feet for nearly half the day, he rose to his feet and declared, “Okay Amato, it’s time to get that damsel.”  Slipping his feet into a pair of rubber soled Oxfords, he grabbed his badge and gun then went out the front door.  Standing outside in the hall was none other than Jimmy, “Jesus Christ, Amato, you take foreva to do right,” he complained.

“Sorry, I forgot we were in this together.”

“Damn straight,” Jimmy said popping his collar.

Seeing him getting psyched up, Amato chuckled and asked, “Whose car are we taking General?” referring to his old street name.

Without batting an eyelash, Jimmy answered, “Whatcha working with?”

“I got a 2017 Chevy Camaro,”

“When they bring that back?”

“Oh about 2010, you probably didn’t notice since you were busy gerneraling and all.” Amato said in jest.

“Yeesh!  It’s like the 80’s all over again.”

Pushing the button on the elevator, Amato said, “Before my time, brotha,” as the door opened, as they both stepped inside.  Jimmy pushed the button to the ground floor and like that, they were on to their next adventure, just like old times.

Dulcet By Dellani Oakes: A Review

Dulcet By Dellani Oakes
Dulcet By Dellani Oakes

Recently, I tried to get back into romance novels and was disappointed by the same ol, tired stories.  But I met an interesting author by the name of Dellani Oakes, who has breathed new life into a very stuffy genre.  In her newest release, “Dulcet” Dellani brings us the story of Cooper, a newly born again Christian with a sexually torrid past.  Cooper, who is now comfortably at home in church finds himself in danger of backsliding when he meets Gloria, the church’s newest cantor.  Instantly attracted, he fears the ghosts of his past pulling him back to his old womanizing ways.

None of this goes unnoticed by several of his friends and church family who are concerned for Cooper as well as for Gloria’s innocence.   He is at odds with his old friend and spiritual mentor Barry– better known as Father Barry.  Cooper is feeling like he’s being judge by those around him and to be honest, he is.  What Cooper doesn’t know is that they only have his best interests at heart but it’s hard for him to see that because he’s still a wounded man.  His life took a tragic turn in college when his fiance was killed in a car accident.  This led to his inevitable drinking and womanizing.  But Cooper’s new found comfort in church changes, when he starts unofficially dating Gloria.

However, not everything is as it seems, as it’s not only Cooper with secrets and a past.  Gloria has a confession of her own and it will throw everyone for a loop!

Although a Christian themed romance novel, Dulcet is not your typical Christian book.  Don’t let that pretty cover fool you.  It does have strong language and adult themes in it.  The reason why I loved this romance novel is because the main character Cooper, although a new Christian, has issues, real ones.  Unlike your typical Christian romance where nothing happens and nobody says anything “unspiritual” this book has characters that are relatable and seriously flawed.  We all know a Cooper, or have one in our family.

Dulcet, I believe will having romance fans laughing, crying and wondering what the heck!?!  Dellani Oakes did a marvelous job with creating characters that are quirky and loveable.  Having said that, I thoroughly enjoyed the book, and believe if you miss real romance novels, then you definitely need to give Dulcet a try.

I give Dulcet 5 stars ★★★★★