Being Inspired, maybe - 107

A picture paints ... well, as many words as you like.  For instance:

And, then, the words:

Given the time we had from getting off the helicopter, and the pickup of Latanzio, Amy had managed to collect his wife Angelina and her two children, and Gianna and her son, Latanzio's mistress that very few knew about.

It transpired Amy's people had only discovered the mistress by accident during a surveillance mix up.  It was, in Amy's opinion, pure gold if it came to needing leverage, though she didn't say what she might need leverage for.

Both were kept in separate rooms in different parts of the underground complex, each with their own guards.

And, what's more, the wife had no idea her husband had a mistress, and even though she doubted his fidelity, it was not something a woman in her position could talk to anyone about because there was no knowing who she could trust, or whether it would get back to her husband with disastrous consequences.

Trust in anyone when being married to such a man, was non-existent.  To a degree, I felt sorry for her, though she had to know what she was getting into because he'd been a part of the family crime business from a very early age.  And, for that matter, so had she, but in her case of my was unfortunate in that she had very little chance of picking who she wanted to spend the rest of her life with.

It seemed that being a Latanzio caused a great deal of grief for anyone who knew him or got in his way.

Both rooms were set up with CCTV cameras, and we were recording everything.  Amy wasn't expecting much from their conversation, if there was any, as it was well known that Angelina was kept out of the loop deliberately.

As I sat in front of the monitors, set up in a room well away from the holding rooms, I could see Amy over on one side talking earnestly to a man I had not seen before, but the suit told me he was some sort of law enforcement, perhaps a superior and they were planning the next move 

I slipped on the headphones at just the right moment, Latanzio being escorted into the room where Angelina was being kept.

She watched him come in, the door closed, but I could see him gesture for her not to speak.  

In a few seconds, he had summed up the room, the two cots provided for the children who were asleep, a state Amy had arranged so as to spare them the memories of being there, and then a glance at his wife which didn't spark much of a reaction.

There was still a degree of residual anger in his manner, still trying to come to grips with the manner of how this escape was being run.

The lack of any outside communication. Or news on what was happening might become a concern at some point so it would be interesting how Amy handled it.

I had seen the surveillance reports and it seemed that for a married couple they spent a lot of time apart, but that was mainly due to the fact she had insisted he not bring his work home, and that gave her plausible deniability.

And, because of that position, there was no surprise it had led to the affair.  Although Angelina had not mentioned it to anyone, whether she knew about it or not, there was no doubt in my mind she did, but may have not known who it was.

When she did, it was going to be a very interesting few minutes.

He knew the room was bugged, but may not necessarily suspect he was on CCTV given the time frame in getting this together.  Perhaps he had been looking for obvious cameras as he came in, and during the time the guards removed the cuffs and shackles and seen none.

I hadn't either until she showed me.

Not even a close inspection would find any cameras, but there were several obvious points where microphones were places so he'd find them, enough that after he had discovered them, he would believe the room was clean.

As with most parts of the underground complex, it had been made over by a team of very experienced set decorators.  I had seen the before and the after and it was difficult to believe it was the same place.

I watched him systematically search and find four devices, and after the last, the triumphant expression.

"So, why am I here?" Angelina asked after he had finished his search.

"I was told that we would be removed to a safe location "

"But you don't think so?"

"This whole operation doesn't feel right.  If Benny had arranged this,  we would not be languishing in a dump like this."

"Who then?"

"Either one of the Carmichaels or the cops."

"Why would the cops kidnap you?  They already had you in custody."

He didn't answer, but I could see he was weighing the possibilities, and in his position, given he hadn't been executed, which by my understanding of the rivalry between the two families, the only option if they had been responsible for his liberation.

So that left his own people or in his mind, the police.  It seemed to me if it had been his brother, another of our guests, he would not be languishing in that small room, and Benny would be there to greet him. 

I wondered briefly whether we had been too clever.

From what I understood of the operation, no one knew what we had been planning and then executed it, and outside the world we had created, all hell was breaking loose.  It had to be done this way for realism and having a legitimate reason to scoop up all of the necessary parties associated with him, operations that would have failed without the right background.

To every media outlet, he had been taken in a daring raid on the prison transfer convoy. That in itself had been a carefully staged scene, right down to the last detail including ambulances for the injured guards.  But it wouldn't take long before questions would be asked.

But, for now, he was the subject of a city-wide manhunt, and it was also noted that both his brother and his family were also missing, and the Carmichaels were top of the police department list of suspects.

"Frankly," he said, I have no idea what's going on, but if this is Benny's doing, he's not doing a very good job of it.  We should be a long way away from here."

"You might think so, but I'd say we're lucky we're still alive.  Do you have any idea what's going on outside?  Did you ever consider that it's your actions that have brought this on?  Benny told me you killed someone, which can't be true because you promised me you would not be like your father."

"I'm nothing like my father, and you don't want to believe everything Benny tells you."

"This isn't the first time, is it?  I told you I didn't want to know about your business, and I trusted you to keep your word.  Trust, I'm afraid, that was misplaced.  I listened to your lies when the police accused you of murdering some rival not wanting to believe it was true, and now, on top of that, the police say you've either kidnapped or killed some guy who witnessed that murder.  I've given you the benefit of the doubt, now it's time to tell me the truth."

"It a frame-up.  The cops have been accusing me of everything they can't solve, and none of it's true.  I swear.  But this isn't the time or the place to be talking about such matters."

"No, perhaps not.  But tell me this, if you've got Benny to break you out of custody, that doesn't strike me as the actions of an innocent man.  An innocent man would stay and take his chances in a court of law."

"A court of law that's stacked against me.  All they have is circumstantial evidence.  All they've ever had is circumstantial evidence."

"Because all the so-called witnesses either disappear, recant their testimony, or turn up dead.  This has to end, if only for the children's sake."

Angelina, then, was no fool.  She knew exactly who it was she married, and I suspect she had, until now, overlooked the lies.  And in saying what she had, she was taking a very big risk.

"Like I said, this is neither the time or the place to be discussing such matters, so you will stop talking or there will be consequences."

Even from where I was viewing the discussion, and in particular Angelina, I could plainly see he had hit a raw nerve.

I felt a hand on the back of my chair and looked up.  Amy had returned and was looking at the monitor.   She had put on the other headphones but left one ear uncovered.

I did the same.  

"What have I missed,"

"A joyous reunion, not.  I think Angelina is about to wring a confession of sorts out of the bastard."

We both went back to the screen.

"Is that a threat, Tony?"  

Her voice had changed, not the sound of a wife who was disappointed, or was tired of her husband's lies.  This was different.

"What do you mean?  No.  I wouldn't threaten you, or anyone."  Slightly apologetic.  

There was a change in the atmosphere in that room, and he had lost some of that bravado.

"Then you'd better remember that.  When we get out of here, you will be having a discussion with my father.  He has been taking a keen interest in your recent activities, and he tells me you have been indiscreet.  He wouldn't tell me what it's about, but I will find out, and you better not have broken your promise."

With that, the conversation was over.  Perhaps there was more to Angelina than I first thought.

© Charles Heath 2020


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