Everyone has a day that is most memorable in their lives, mine was the day I met Oliver Freeman. That day will forever be ingrained in all corners of my subconscious, ever present, ever ready to mock me for what came after that day.
It all started seven months ago, the period during which I was preparing to take over my family's business. My family is not like other regular families our business was also far from regular. My Grandfather ran a cartel for 40 years and passed it to father. As the future head of the cartel, I look forward to a hard life filled with betrayals, violence, and loneliness. However, I wish to find love before I ventured into the world of blood and betrayals. I wish to feel briefly, the light and warmth of another before I immerse myself into the darkness that awaits me.
Everyone around me; my family friends, and acquaintances was broken in one way or another. My potential lovers were either too scared of me or they were gold diggers. So I decided to leave Italy in my quest to find love. Of course I couldn't leave without my two best friends Jayden and Jayda Bernadi, the 'Demonic Pairs' as everyone referred to them, so I convinced them to tag along.
I told my dad that I was going to America (US) to expand our territory and our business but in reality it was just a disguise.
The old man wouldn't have allowed me leave the country, if he knew my true intentions so I used the business deal as a cover up. There's nothing wrong in telling a white lie.
The D-Day arrived and I was getting ready when Jayda and Jayden walked in as usual with their noisy selves.
"Here is the man of the day, how does it feel?", Jayda asked me.
"How does it feel? Jayda why are you asking how I feel?" I asked with with confused face not fully understanding her question.
Jayda laughed and replied, "you are so silly. I'm asking how it feels because you're one step closer in finding your Lo Affetto" she said that in a sarcastic way.
"Stop teasing him. You do know, if it was another person who said that, their tongue would have been cut off" Jayden playfully scolds.
"Oh I'm scared, he is going to kill me" Jayda says whilst laughing it off. "You are aware that I'm his best friend, right?"
Jayden replied "likewise me but you don't see me going around teasing him in his quest for love"
I knew where this was heading to so I shouted.
"Can you both cut it off?! Now is not the time to start arguing and bickering about who is who to me and who isn't. For f**k's sake, just help me pack my stuffs."
"You know you don't need to pack a lot of things. I mean you are 'The Labyrinth Armani'. You are going to be the next boss for The Unfazed cartel. Sometimes you need to flex your wealth," Jayden urged.
I smirk and replied him, "and you wonder why you're always meeting the gold diggers in all of Europe."
"Oh you didn't have to go there but I'm not complaining." Jayda bursts out laughing. " Before we go any further, let it be known that this is why I don't do relationships. It's either they want to you for your money or they are spies. Always one of the two"
"Enough with your relationship tales, we have other pressing issues to talk about but we will do that on our way to the airport," I said cutting her off for she could go on and on.
I called upon Lukas, my own Caporegime.
"Boss everything is ready, I've made sure that no one notices that you have left Italy. I also contacted Lawrence, your father's Caporegime in Newyork and told him to get everything ready for your arrival"
"Thank you Lukas. Make sure everything is in order in my absence, you know I have no room for mistakes and I wouldn't hesitate to get rid of anyone who causes troubles in my absence, " I sat staring intently into his eyes before continuing. "Never keep your guard down, you know my uncle and the miscreant he calls a son wouldn't hesitate to seize whatever opportunity they have to make sure I'm not Inducted as the next Leader for The Unfazed".
Jayden sighed and said "I still don't get why you can't kill that useless uncle of yours and his son. They have absolutely no relevance in our cart.."
Jayda replied cutting him off, "Oh but they do have some relevance in our cartel"
Jayden asked, "which is?"
"Causing nuisance and unnecessary problems for our beautiful lover boy over there," She said gesturing to me.
I smiled and said, "Jayda I haven't even found the person I love yet but here you are, already making silly jokes. Sometimes I wonder on how you ended up being my best friend."
"Boss the car is ready and your Mama asked you to call her once you get to the airport," Lukas said walking into the room.
Typical Kimberly Armani, I murmured under my breath. Just because she couldn't have her way with my love life she has decided to act as if she doesn't care.
"Well you heard the man. The car is ready, let's go and Jayda stop trying to seduce Lukas. You haven't succeeded all these years so today ain't gonna be an exception," I shouted seeing her swing her hips seductively in front of him.
"Finally we are in New York, the land of Labyrinth Lo Affetto", Jayden laughed while saying this. "I can't wait to see how this quest for love unfolds, I hope to find the one destined for me" he mutter looking outside the window.
"You mean the gold diggers in New York," Jayda snorted in return.
I burst out of laughter and said, "well that isn't a lie but both of you shouldn't forget about what we talked about in the jet."
Jayda and Jayden looked at me confused. As if they didn't know or understood what I was talking about. I was already fumming in anger.
"Oh please don't start acting all dramatic, we were only joking. Of course we remembered every single thing you said. I mean if we were dumb, we wouldn't have been the best consigliere in the whole of Europe now would we?" Jayden asked playfully bumping shoulders with me.
"Like we even beat our dad's record," Jayda put in.
"Trust us, we won't reveal who we are unless we are supposed to," Jayda said.
Sighing, "We won't get violent with anyone even if they deserve it," Jayden said grumpily.
"Speak for yourself," Jayda said. "If anyone pisses me off, I will be violent with them. I'm not the one searching for who to love them."
As they were arguing, Lawrence greeted me and introduced himself to me. Looking him up and down, I noticed the fear in his eyes.
Smirking, I said, "You don't have to be scared of me...yet. You haven't done anything to experience the tales of what you have heard about me....yet."
"Who is this?" Jayda asked drawing closer. "Hmm Labyrinth, you never told me I was going to meet such fine specie, I definitely would have touched up my makeup"
"Don't let her get to you. She calls every single man she meets that" I said to Lawrence who suddenly looked uncomfortable with her sudden interest.
As I entered the car that came to Lawrence brought to pick us up, I thought to myself Is this all worth it? would I be able to find what I'm looking for? Can I prove my mother wrong?
Lost in my thoughts, I heard a sudden bang at the trunk of our car. “What's going on?”
“What's going is that someone is shooting at us!” Jayda yelled.
“Looks like someone is trying to kill you, Lab.” The calmness in Jayden’s voice was the exact opposite of his sister’s angry one.
“Who? We just got to New York. Lawrence, do you know anyone who would want to attack us?” Lab asked
“None that I know of, boss," Lawrence responded.
“Stop the car”, I said to Lawrence.
“Why are we stopping?” Jayda asked.
“We can't risk them following us to the penthouse. Let's sort it here since we haven't yet left the airport.”
“That works,” Jayda said.
Lawrence stopped the car and we brought out our guns and took cover. We acted like we were hit by their bullet. Lawrence raised his hands in surrender to divert their attention from him. Two unknown men opened the car door and I swiftly pointed the guns in both hands to their dvck, asking them not to move. Jayda and Jayden took care of the driver. I asked Lawrence to tie them and put in the trunk of our cars, and ordered that we stop at the warehouse first before going down to the penthouse.
Once we got to the warehouse, Lawrence dragged the men out of the trunk and dumped them on the ground. Jayda being a hot head started pounding on them nonstop.
“Jayda, that's okay,” I said. She could have them disfigured if I didn’t stop her. “Who sent you?” I asked staring carefully at the unknown men.
“W . . . we don't know what you are talking about. Nobody sent us. We just didn't like the idea of an Armani coming down to our city,” One of them said.
I stood up from where I was sitting. “You really don't know what I'm capable of, do you?” They didn’t answer.
I chuckled and moved closer to the one who looked like the leader. “Your daughter gets off school by 2pm doesn’t she?” I whispered in his ears.
As he heard my question, his eyes widened more than their actual size. He became terrified and started shivering. “I will talk! I will talk. Please . . . please.”
“Go ahead then. I’m listening.”.
“ Benicio Armani. He sent us.”
I smiled as I heard the name of my cousin. Of course, only him would be stupid enough to send such amateurs to attack me.
“Lawrence, you know what to do. And please, don't forget to send a condolence message to their family. With flowers too. Jayden, take a picture of them and send it to my cousin. He should be informed about the outcome of the attack he ordered on me,” I said.
“You really want to do this?” Jayda asked. “What happened to keeping a low profile, huh?”
“Well they tried to kill us, Jayda. No one dares to touch the tail of a lion and goes unharmed. Benicio, you better watch your back. My attack will be a surprise,” I spat.
We got into the car and started heading to the penthouse after we were done with those men. I reclined in my seat and shut my eyes to rest. But then I noticed Lawrence’s stare and even while my eyes were closed, I could feel him still looking at me.
“Lawrence, is there something you will like to share with me? Your stares are bothering me.”
“Uhm, I just wanted to know what you said to him that made him open up. He seemed very afraid.”
“I told him the time his child gets off school,” I answered not opening my eyes.
“How did you get such an information about him in such a short period of time?” Lawrence asked shocked.
“He looked like a dad. And his phone screen gave him up. All l had to do was to say the time his daughter normally leaves school and he started running his mouth like a tap.”
“Were you really going to hurt his daughter?” Lawrence asked
“He wouldn't have,” Jayda answered. “It was only a bluff. Labyrinth has three major rules in his life. One, Family comes first. Two never leave a man behind and three, women and children aren't to be harmed no matter the situation,” She said this with respect evident in her voice.
“Oh, I thought those rules were mere lies. I didn't know you live by them.” Lawrence was impressed.