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Vittorio Castelluccio
A Little Power
Fri Feb 17, 2006 16:36

Note: Italicized conversation in Italian, for my own sanity.

Are you certain this is wise?” Giulio was questioning Vittorio again as they stepped out of the Plaza’s lobby, into a dim twilight. Hell, the man had been questioning him most of the day, which was beginning to wear heavily upon thinned nerves.

I told you once, and I will not tell you again. Do not question me, Giulio.” Vittorio drew a deep breath, adjusting his shirt cuffs in an absent gesture. Instead of a suit and tie, he had just gone with the dress shirt and slacks, appearing to be… Hell, even he didn’t know which clique he fit into at the moment. But a man not in a suit didn’t attract as much attention. “I want to see for myself where these so-called bosses hold most their business. Call it quality assurance.” But his grim smile was hardly assuring.

Yes, sir…” A quiet reply, and they were on their way.

First, they had visited Little Italy out of habit, to see what had changed during the years. Unsurprisingly, nothing had. But a taxi ride brought them toward the wharf district, where Vittorio allowed Giulio to handle any transactions. He was not so ignorant as to realize his grasp on American money was fleeting, at best. A few shop owners recognized the interactions, and paid their respect without ever knowing his name. Were they all so skittish?

Apparently so. Regardless of his dress or speech, it was his stance and conduct that had shopkeepers paying attention. Of course, being on the outskirts of the Italian community, he was surprised to find that they still spoke Italian and English. Immensely pleased, especially after his few questions were answered directly and with respect, they were on their way. Down into oblivion.

This is where goods come through?” Vittorio found himself asking dubiously. Supposedly the wharf district was a bustling place during the daylight hours. But now that twilight had set in, and night was inevitable, the area had cleared out. It was likely that the idiots who ran this area transferred things during the darkest hours. It would bring suspicion if anyone saw, but that could be rectified.

One of the areas, yes. A few others are rather innocuous, and difficult to spot.” Giulio had been with him for years, more than a right hand man after Vittorio’s father had passed away. He had taught the young, grieving boy everything he could about the business, and did well.

Frowning, Vittorio allowed his gaze to shift across the docks, studying them for a few long moments. The idiots that afternoon had actually believed him to be a push over in the beginning, since he had used Giulio as a translator. But when the name Medici had come up, and his own surname of Castelluccio, the ignorant expressions had shifted to wonder. Of course, mere words could never cement anything in a land filled with treasonous asses. A demonstration had been needed.

The man had only lost his pinky finger, but the screams that had resulted were a terrific tool to use against them. Nor had Giulio done the dirty work. That time, Vittorio had gotten his hands bloodied. Not only could he be dangerous inside the meeting room, but outside as well. Those fools needed to see that. No one had wretched, though several had gulped nervously, white-faced. Only one man had met his gaze head on, the oldest Family present. That was who he had to watch, for if there was ever an uprising, the fools would flock to him—

“Help!” Furrowing his brow, Vittorio turned to Giulio.

Was that a cry for help?” The older gentleman shrugged elegantly, turning his face toward where the sound had come from. But there was nothing after a few seconds, and he had no desire to go chasing—“Look. She comes running from the docks.” But the girl was far too well-dressed to be slumming about there, even if she did wear denim and athletic footwear. “Should we even bother?

“A friend of mine is being assaulted, please help in the name of God!” The girl had gone so far as to yell at them when they were spotted, causing Vittorio to frown. She had spoken so quickly, he hadn’t been able to understand her. Only Giulio’s quiet repetition had done him any good. Once she reached them, it was apparent…

Oh hell. Its her. Luciana Avellino, or a remarkable look alike.

“Dove?” Where was a rather valid question at this point, asked of Giulio. But regardless what he believed of women, she gulped in some air and pointed toward the docks.

“Passi attraverso le due costruzioni. Sono nel lotto di parcheggio.” Go through the two buildings. They are in the parking lot. And the girl was intelligent when under stress! Taking another assessing glance of Luciana, he only nodded and turned in that direction.

Vittorio! Be—

“Denomini la polizia.” Vittorio cut his man off with those words, considering calling the police actually would be a good thing in this situation. After all, wasn’t that what this area was known for? Good police officers, always just, and such nonsense.


The woman was still alive?! Surprised at this turn of events, Vittorio’s feet moved quickly now, sure and confidant. No matter that his grasp of English was failing any more, if unless the person spoke slowly so he could process the damned language. He was rusty. A woman that needed help was a woman that needed help, regardless of the locale.

Skittering on pebbles and dirt through the small alleyway that Luciana had dictated, what Vittorio saw stopped him cold. One man on the ground, clutching his pelvis, gave a high pitched moan. Two others scrabbled with the woman’s clothing, and then their own. That was disgusting! It would only take two shots to rid society of their taint to the gene pool, but there was a problem with that. Because he was an Italian diplomat in the U.S., and had gone without his suit jacket, or even a coat, he had no firearm. He wasn’t so much a fool that he would tempt a foreign government to take him in on some trumped up charges and hold him there for ages. Definitely not.

“’Ey, Joey. Lookit that, we got an audience for the little bitch.” Vittorio’s brow furrowed, processing the odd dialect, which quick brought about a frown. But he stood still, for the men hadn’t done much else aside from hold the woman down. If they didn’t move, he didn’t have to move just yet. “Looks good, don’t she? Want a taste?”

If he had been a lesser man, the situation may have made him ill.

“Sure.” The word sounded odd coming from Vittorio’s lips, twisting it with a roll and a lilt that was uncommon. Stepping forward, he went so far as to unbuckle his belt, rolling it around his hand before clenching it into a fist. It wouldn’t be the first time he had fought, nor the last, but usually it was not for such an auspicious reason.

Stepping up, the Italian attempted only once to make eye contact with the woman on the ground, allowing the men to think that he was… looking. Aside from any potential aesthetic value that the woman’s body had, though, the entire situation was revolting. Then ‘Joey’ began to move again, vainly attempting to unbutton the fly of his jeans. Oh well, they shouldn’t have tried harming an innocent anyhow.

Vittorio’s first blow landed against the side of ‘Joey’s’ head, buckle first, bringing about a sickening crack that was muted in a rambunctious night. Stepping over the woman’s body, he advanced upon the man’s counterpart, who had begun backing away slowly. But his eyes flickered downward, and before the Italian realized it, the man that had been clutching his pelvis tripped him up, landing face first in the dirt. Pebbles and broken bits of glass ground into his cheek, stinging the flesh.

Using as much force as he could in the prone position, Vittorio brought his knee up and shoved his dress shoe into the man’s face. His head whipped back, and a startling crunch signified… Ugh, he hated that much blood. Shaking his head, the Italian rose to his feet once more, eyeing the last man. Just one more…

But he decided to turn tail and run! Off in the direction that Giulio and Luciana were, Vittorio pounded after the man, his lengthier strides catching up quickly. Just beyond the two buildings he toppled the man to the ground, and landed a series of blows that were not gentlemanly, nor were they considered nice in any fashion. Face, sternum, back, wherever he could land a blow, it was done. Eventually the man’s eyes rolled back into his skull, and he slumped to the ground. But now Vittorio was angry, and had no compunctions about landing a few kicks to the man’s head while he was unconscious.

Giulio!” But the man didn’t answer his call. Frowning, Vittorio trotted back toward the beaten woman, unsurprised to see that both men were still on the ground, in various stages of unconsciousness. But the woman… Her clothing was beyond repair, and he couldn’t stand having her uncovered like that for a variety of reasons.

Left with very little choice in the matter, Vittorio took off his own shirt since he had no coat, and draped it over the woman. She wasn’t small in stature, he thought, but it covered her from chest to mid-thigh, so it would have to do. Then her eyelids fluttered, and it was the first time that he had even believed she was still anywhere near a state of wakefulness.

“Shh…” he murmured, gently pushing a few strands of hair away from her face. The woman flinched, though he could not blame her. “You are fine.” What the hell was he supposed to say in a situation like this? Very carefully, in the dim light offered by a tampered light post, he inspected her injuries. Bruises were slowly coming to life along her jaw and cheek, and there was swelling significant enough to make him wonder if the jaw had been broken. Various scratches upon her chest showed where the men had clawed her in an effort to remove the clothing, and he did not even want to venture beneath his draped shirt.

“What is your name?” Anything to keep her conscious, then he could be done with this nonsense for the time being. Twice she mumbled, and Vittorio had to lean closer to hear a whisper of the word Sonnet. That was an… interesting name. “A very beautiful name,” he murmured, regardless of his dubious thoughts, gently patting her hand.

The sounds of sirens in the distance brought Vittorio’s head up; for once glad to hear those infernal noises. This ‘Sonnet’ would have help, and he could go home for the evening and be done with this damned country. Doing anything to keep the woman conscious, and even focusing on his features, his concentration was solely upon her for those long minutes ticking past.

Finally! They were here! Vittorio left his protective hover only once the medical persons had taken over, working efficiently and with a grace he’d never possess for those things. Then the men in blue uniforms followed, drawing him away from the woman and toward a police cruiser.

Imagine his surprise when he was shoved against the trunk of the car, cold metal encasing his wrists.

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