(II) Chapter 21 (His Story)
I was glad when I discovered I had to take a jet with Anthonio and Leandro. There were few jets and we were all divided into groups. I'd been afraid they'd put me with the boss. Luckily they didn't.
That evening at five, we all boarded our jets. Of course I had a blindfold on, led by Leandro. Anthonio followed closely behind. We were out in the cold snow and I heard the boss give everyone instructions in Italian.
Then he said something that made Leandro squeeze my arm slightly. I immediately guessed he was trying to make me understand something. Well I didn't wonder for long because I felt that monster grab my chin and a force a kiss on my lips. I puked when he forced his tongue into my mouth. He made me sick! I knew Leandro and Anthonio were watching. They couldn't do anything at the moment of course and so I couldn't blame them.
The man broke his kiss with a hideous laugh. I hated his guts.
"My sweetheart." he laughed, "It's been long I touched you, huh? Don't worry baby. I've been busy lately. I'll take care of you when I have some time." he rubbed my cheek but I roughly got away from him.
A little scream escaped my mouth when he slapped me hard across the face. Leandro's hold on my arm tightened slightly. He was clearly not pleased but he couldn't take that risk. I imagined how angry Anthonio could be too.
"Stupid slut. I've told you not to act all rough with me! Fool." I frowned in his direction, not giving a damn about him.
"Take her away! Let's go."
He ordered and I heard different footsteps as everyone headed for the jet in which they had to travel. Leandro carefully led me to ours. Once in, he untied my eyes. I was more than angry. I was sick and tired of that monster.
"I'm tired of all this!" I screamed angrily, my eyes watering. "I hope that monster dies! I hope he rots in hell! Aaah!" I screamed, grabbing a champagne glass and breaking it.
Anthonio who'd come in shortly immediately hugged me tight, calming me down.
"It's okay." he whispered. I sobbed against his chest. "I'm as angry as you are. He'll never touch you again. I swear. He'll have to do that over my dead body."
I was staring out the window at the dark sky full of stars. It'd been four hours since we'd left England. It was one of the guards piloting the plane.
Leandro was sleeping while Anthonio had gone to the washroom. I stared at the sleeping Leandro. I wondered on where and how he'd found Anthonio. I wanted to know more on their friendship. Their bond.
At that instant, Anthonio appeared.
"I was wondering on something." I started.
"On almost everything about you. How you found yourself in the streets and why you hate America so much. I say so cuz most of your terrorist attacks and bombings were more in America than anywhere else."
He stared silently, a smirk on his lips.
"It's a long story."
"We got all our time. Plus, I really want to know the beginning of your friendship with this modern day joker." I mused, referring to Leandro.
Anthonio smiled and came to sit opposite me.
"Fine. Lemme tell you then."
I smiled and adjusted. He started his story.
"According to what I was told by the women who took care of the children in the orphanage where I grew up, I was dropped in front of the orphanage's door at around midnight. I was only four months old. I was left at the doorstep with a piece of paper that said in Italian:
'His name's Anthonio. I don't want him.'
I listened with shock and pity.
"I was and I'm still certain of one thing, my parents didn't want me. That's why it surprises me that your parents care so much about you. I'd never experienced any kind of love. Both parental and any other. Love was a feeling, foreign, fake and stupid to me. But that changed when I met Leandro. He gave me brotherly and friendly love."
I felt my eyes prick. I was withholding myself from shedding years already.
"How did you meet him?"
"Well, I grew up in that orphanage. As the years flew by, all the children I'd been with, got adopted. Even the new ones who'd just arrived, got adopted. And so along with other children like me, we were illegally put on a ship that was to take us to America. We were gonna be placed in another orphanage there. And that's what finally happened.
In America I had difficulties. The other children I'd arrived with, finally got adopted too because they knew a bit of English. I didn't know how to speak English. I was always rejected, sometimes bullied and treated like an outcast entirely because of my skin color and language." he said slowly and I knew he had that lump in his throat. I reached out and held his hand.
He went on.
"I was never adopted because whoever came and saw me would say things like oh, I was too cold for a child, I was strange, my eyes had a strange color, I had an ugly stare, I was impassive, I couldn't speak English etc. Some were simply racists. But that didn't affect me. The fact that I was always rejected made me get used to it. And till now it doesn't bother me one bit. At the age of twelve, I was the oldest in that orphanage and this made the caretakers start treating me like an errand boy . All the other kids had always avoided me. They too found me strange. I started to love the fear I was causing in them. I believed that that was my power. My own special gift. To cause fear in people. I became a bully to them. I was wicked."
I swallowed, listening.
"I became wicked and stubborn. I bullied and beat on the other kids. And that was why I ended up being isolated and locked up in a room by the caretakers most of the time. Sometimes they would starve me telling me it would've been better off for me to remain in my country."
I looked him in the eye as he spoke, feeling hurt. He'd become a horrible person on his own. His environment and the circumstances in his life had made him the psychopath he'd become.
"One day when they'd locked me up, I escaped through the window late at night. I ran and ran, not having any precise destination. Of course I got lost in the city of Miami. I was hungry and cold. It tried to steal from a shop but I was caught and had to run for my life. I reached an infamous street and sat on the sidewalk, crying. I'd not eaten for two days. And as if that wasn't enough, a group of homeless and rough teenagers attacked me, stealing my shoes and jacket."
I couldn't believe my ears. How sad Anthonio's story was. My eyes watered and I immediately
wiped them, trying not to cry.
"I was hopeless. And that was when I noticed someone coming down the street in my direction. I was too weak to run and so I remained seated. The person approached me but I didn't look up.
'Hey.' he said and I looked up. It
was a boy about two years older than me."
"Leandro?" I asked slowly.
"Yeah. After looking up at him, I frowned and looked away. I wasn't in any mood to answer a stranger. Plus, I didn't know English. But then, to my surprise, he spoke in Italian. He said:
'What are you doing in these streets all alone? It's dangerous for you.'
I looked up at him, surprised that he'd immediately spoken to me in Italian and not in English. I remember staring at him that night. I felt like trusting him all of a sudden. Something that I never did with strangers.
'I'm Leandro. And you are?' he'd asked.
I remember my answer made him smile. It's funny because I smiled back. He had that and still has that contagious smile. I was someone who smiled rarely but around Leandro it all changed."
I listened, tears finally rolling down my cheeks.
"He sat down close to me. He had grocery bags in his hands and I watched him pull out a bag of chips and give me. Then he said:
'My boss will surely kill me but I guess you're worth it, little man.'
And with that he opened it for me to eat. It was the first time someone seemed to care for me or my situation. I ate.
'You work for someone?' I'd asked him.
'Yes. And I should be heading home now. But I don't think I should leave you here. You can follow me if you want. I can try and talk to my boss into employing you too. I was like you not long ago. No family. But I grew up in that house. You ready?'
He didn't need to ask twice. I'd already accepted. And that was how I followed him back to the boss's hidden property. I was employed by him and the other men. And with Leandro by my side, we were both trained into cunning assassins. We were getting closer with each day. I saw in him the close friend and brother I'd never had. He always sacrificed for me and had risked his life more than once for me. And that still happens till today. And I'm ready to always do same for him.
I loved the new me and had promised to revenge all my years of reject. I hated America and the people living in it. When I was fourteen, we returned to Rome and that was where I committed my fist murder. My ex girlfriend. From there I returned to America as a terrorist, killing people here and there. With the help of the drugs I was taking, I became a even more emotionless. Especially as Leandro had been sent off to Spain. Though we kept contact, I felt lonely and that made me even more of a monster. Now you know."
Anthonio ended his story. I stared silently.
"I'm so sorry you had to go through all that." I approached him and hugged him tight
"It's fine. Everything's okay now."
"I love you."
"I love you too."