Gambetti crime family
Leisure Center crew
Chapter 3Clowns to the Left Jokers to the Right
Sammy had been right about Alderney, in the past two weeks we had made more money than in the previous six months. Things had been going so well that the inevitable stench of trouble should have been obvious but then isn’t that always the problem with the sweet smell of success, it covers the stench. When it finally arrived it came from Broker in the form of Jimmy Alfieri, a made man from Roy Zito’s crew.
“Johnny boy your looking prosperous, that suit, that chain, drinking fine wine and smoking fifty dollar stogies. It almost suits you! Almost.”
“Jimmy you should have called and let me know you were coming, I was about to leave, your lucky you caught me.”
“Yeah I hear you're real busy at the moment, working off the reservation.”
“Family business that’s all. You know me Jimmy I’m too stupid to work off the record.”
“Ha ha, there it is you weaselly piece of sh*t. I’m saying this only once. Stay the f*ck out of Alderney or you’ll be the piece of work, on the f*cking record capiche?”
Before I could get more than two words out of my mouth Jimmy had a snub nosed revolver resting on my forehead.
“Do you f*cking understand?”
As Jimmy left I could feel the eyes of my crew burning holes in my back. At that moment the last thing I wanted to do was to turn around and meet their disappointment with my shame.
Give me a f*cking minute to myself you toxic mother f*ckers, just one minute that’s all I ask.
“Johnny boy its Sarah she sounds pissed.”
I extended my arm with an open hand and waited for the phone to be placed in my grasp.
“It’s not a good time, I’m working.”
“And what about working on your real family huh? You promised things would change, your kids hardly know you for Christ’s sake. I accepted you didn’t love me a long time ago but you can’t do this to them.”
“You can’t keep saying this sh*t Sarah. You know I love you. You and the kids are everything to me. Everything I do is for you.”
“Your probably actually believe that don’t you? What chance did Ludo have with a drug peddling murdering gangster for a father. You may as well have put that sh*t in his arms yourself! You're probably making money from his misery, you’re killing your son just like you killed your nephews and who knows how many other mothers sons.”
“Sarah just listen…”
“No not anymore, twenty years of being alone, feeling unloved and being trapped in your gangster life, no not anymore. I’m taking the kids to my mothers, I’ll call you next week John.”
I am stunted rage, the final result of the worse possible decisions taken at every turn for forty-three years. I will burn the world, allow the rage to flow free. They will not kill me no matter how hard they push, I am not my fathers son.
“Johnny boy, we’re late, we were supposed to be there already.”
I should have taken out my gun and shot everyone of the lesions that surround me but instead I towed the line, Sammy’s line, and it was feeling heavier by the second. We were due at the docks in Port Tudor. We were going to try and win over Phil Bell’s boys in the Dock Workers Union. We had made good inroads in taking over the Pegorinos most lucrative rackets. Aldo Gatti had been left with the sort of scraps that I’d been working with for the past ten years. Mainly the activities that were difficult for another to appropriate. Customers of bookies and shylocks are uneasy with new faces, meaning that to take over someone’s else’s book you have to keep them alive which in this life is too much of a liability to chance.
We decided against the subtle approach in favour of a show of strength. There were eight of us in total spread between four cars. I was accompanied by Vinny Cipato, a long time member of the family who was straightened out in Sonny Cangelosi’s reign. He kinda looked like a sickly librarian with his thick rimmed glasses, skinny physique and sunken cheeks. What I liked most about him was his unease with banter, he never laughed when someone was being ruthlessly taunted and he never broke any balls himself. He was actually kind of a nice guy, kind of that is, I mean he has killed and tortured people so nice doesn’t sit that easily with any of us but even so he’s as nice as we come.
“Do you think they’ll still be there?”
“I dunno Vinny, it’ll be interesting to see though, if they are I don’t think we’ll have any problems. You stand around waiting for two hours then you gotta be pretty f*ckin’ scared of not being there.”
“Are they Italian?”
“Nah, one of them is definitely Irish, Murphy can’t get a more Irish name than that. Probably why he went with Phil B in the first place, the Lupisellas work those docks too but those guys are off limits as old Vincent is the boss of bosses now Jon’s gone.”
“You think Roy will whack Sammy.”
“Nah he has to find him first. He lives and works under an assumed name, he has had so much plastic surgery that even his own mother wouldn’t recognise him and he’s constantly on the move. Nah it wont be Sonny it’ll be us.”
“That’s nice, real nice.”
“Aint it f*ckin’ just.”
Unfortunately they hadn’t waited for us so we sent Donnie Salsone and Nicky Spoleti to fetch them and in true karmic fate we stood around for forty minutes waiting for them to bring the three union guys to us.
“We waited an hour but then it just seemed too unusual for us to be standing behind a building while we were supposed to be overseeing our legal challenge to Genco Freight Company. We still have to answer to our members and if we don’t then nothing we agree will ever happen.”
“Alright all is forgiven now lets get to it. Phil Bell is gone and he aint coming back, so either you give up your six figure income and just cash the cheques you get from the union or you need someone to step into Bell’s shoes. So you got three choices: Aldo Gatti, having to deal with that nutcase Loopy or us. Now I’m sure the Lupisellas would happily get into bed with you but you’ve got to be living in a fantasy if you think they’ll keep you around for long; they’ve got their own people ready to step into your shoes. You go with Gatti and it’s the same thing. He can’t stand up to the Lupisellas, he doesn’t have any of the means to keep this thing together past next week. So really you got one choice, us.”
“Eloquently put but this is not the eighties, there are other people, the Russians, the Chinese, the …”
“Don’t try playing hardball or we’ll see how hard your balls really are. We can do this nice or we can do it in a more… traditional way. Tony here has mastered the art, after many years of painstaking practice, of breaking every bone in the human body. You can have us arrested but I promise you that we don’t need much time to make you suffer beyond your darkest nightmares and you will before we ever see the inside of a cell.”
“Hey, wait a minute, this is a business negotiation! We all want the same damn thing, to make money for f*cks sake. Didn’t one of you guys used to say, ‘You can’t make money with a gun in your hand?’”
For the first time today I felt happy, my rage could be released. I pulled out a Glock 19 released the magazine and the chambered bullet then pistol whipped the smart mouthed union guy. The first blow caught him in the mouth, the crunching sound of metal smashing into teeth sent a rush of endorphins coursing through my body. The second blow hit his raised hand as he tried to protect his head, he yelled out in pain, I suspect from a broken knuckle. The third blow was a downward strike right on the top of his head. He fell down concussed but still conscious.
“I f*ckin’ make money with a gun in my hand.”
One of the other union guys nervously cleared his throat before quietly speaking, “The same arrangement we had with Phil?”
“Speak the f*ck up.”
I briefly waved the bloodied pistol in his face before inserting the clip and chambering a round.
“We just want the same deal we had with Phil.”
“Now that wasn’t so hard was it?”
As we walked back to the cars I felt completely reinvigorated, I could hold my head high once again amongst these men. But I still had the uneasy feeling that something bad was around the corner which tempered my good mood. Before heading back to Little Italy we stopped in at Nonna Pina’s to tell our Alderney partners the good news.
The place was strangely deserted, both staff and customers were eerily absent. It was the first time Vinny had accompanied me to meet with the Frattelli crew and he remarked, “Well at least its easy to get a table.” We found Lupo Frattelli hidden away at a small table near the bar, the table was obscured by the glass panels inside the doorway and the booths between us and the bar. He was talking to a young boy of no more than ten years old. As we approached the boy kissed Lupo’s cheek then ran into the kitchen area.
“We just came from Port Tudor, everything’s ready. So as soon as you come through with the cars we can start bringing in some serious cash.”
“Good good. Please sit down, you and your… friend?”
“Right yeah sorry. This is Vinny Cipato a friend of ours.”
“Pleased to meet you Vinny. Would either of you like a drink? I’m having one anyway.”
“Yeah sure whatever you having.”
Lupo fetched three glasses and bottle of Cognac, as he poured he told us the lad that had been here was his grandson who he hoped would one day be the boss of bosses. I could never want something so destructive as the life for my children. It killed me that my eldest was running out of options fast and that his best hope of making it to twenty-one was probably going to be working with me. He had spent half of his adult life in detox and rehab clinics but it hasn’t made any difference. I can’t say I blame him, he knew what I did from a young age, I didn’t want him too but kids have a way of finding these things out. I want to protect my two youngest from all of this, even from their brother’s influence. He’s not a bad kid just lost. So I’ll put some money in his pocket and get him to run some errands; anything to keep him out of trouble.
“Did you notice anything different when you walked in?”
“Yeah, where is everyone?”
“I dunno, can’t reach them.”
“What all of them?”
“Yep f*ckin’ waiters, kitchen staff, hostess and my soldiers have all disappeared off the face of the earth.”
“I think the restaurant staff are scared, this war with Ali Barber has been messy. A lot of citizens are in the hospital and cemetery because of us.”
“He’s the one prolonging this, he can’t win. We’re the Gambetti family, we don’t lose mob wars especially not with a glorified crew.”
“You really love yourselves don’t ya? Always looking down on us because we’re not on the commission, we don’t do our induction ceremony right, we got an Irish underboss. It’s always something, some reason why you don’t have to show us the proper respect. We always show respect because that’s cosa nostra! You LC guys…ah f*ck it, just forget about it.”
“Lupo no disrespect meant I’m sorry. I should learn to think before I open my big fat mouth right?”
“What’s it all even about these days: a woman boss, a kid don and a faggot at that, a super grass taking down an entire family…”
“Who the f*ck you calling a faggot?”
“What? You haven’t heard? Roy Zito is a fag, him and gay Tony and who knows how may other queers.”
People get killed for all kinds of stupid reasons: a spilt drink, a wrong word, speaking to an old flame but especially for insulting a man’s honour. I leant across the table and tried to grab Lupo but he leapt up, bottle in hand. Vinny took my lead and rushed him only to be stopped in his tracks by the Cognac bottle being smashed in his face. He let out a primal howl which soon turned to a whimper as he clutched the pieces of flesh torn from his face. I tried to pull my gun from its holster but Lupo kicked the table over on top of me. I frantically freed my arm but the table made it impossible to reach my gun. A size nine shoe raced towards my face, then everything turned black.
Edited by vinnygorgeous, 22 January 2011 - 06:33 PM.