By: D. L. Karabin
The unmarked car driven by a sergeant in the Carabiniari meandered down the silent neighborhood streets until it stopped and dropped off its passenger near Via Cassio.
The air was still with hardly a breeze or the buzz of traffic. It was 1:35 in the morning.
Buon giorna, Roma!
Agent Micheal Archangelo, 35, greeted another officer posted in his building’s lobby as part of the intense protection protocol he and his son were afforded.
He took the tiny elevator up to the fifth floor, one of the first times his athleticism allowed it—he usually ran up the staircase two steps at a time. But tonight was different. The 7-hour flight from Greece was riddled with turbulence and strong headwinds. Sleep deprivation does strange things to a person.
He fumbled around in his pockets, looking for his key, then—finally—stumbled like a drunk into the foyer where he dropped his carry-on. He walked in the dark through the large apartment letting the street lights guide him. Instead of his bedroom, he chose his office to crash in. Force of habit. He was used to working there through the night. Often did. But not
tonight. When he saw the comfy brown leather sofa and pale blue cashmere throw he reconsidered and instead, hit it like a ton of bricks. The hours flew by.
“Dad, you’re home!” 5-year old Sam shouted as he saw his dad’s bag on the marble floor, his bulldog Cesar at his heels, squealing loudly.
“Sh-hhhh, Sam,” whispered his nanny Grace as she approached, putting on a robe. It was 7:10 A.M.
Too late. Sam and Cesar already burst into the study and found the sleeping dad. Sam knew he’d be there—not in his bedroom— because this is where he worked day and night hunting bad guys.
“Hi, buddy,” yawned Micheal who scratched Cesar simultaneously as he hugged his boy. “Good to be home! What’s new?”
“I got a gold star from Donatella on my Italian quiz.”
Then he glanced up at Grace who smiled warmly.
Donatella was the teacher who home-schooled Sam ever since the aborted kidnapping attempt a month earlier. During the incident at a nearby park, Cesar was injured, attached savagely by a rare, Somalia dog.
“Look at you, Cesar,” smiled Micheal. “All healed and full of life!”
Since that awful day, Sam and Grace were on lock down, with round-the-clock Carabiniari. Sam was okay with that for the most part because his best friends lived in the building and they all played together in a common area. But he never stopped asking when he could go to the park again. This time was no exception.
“Dad, did you get the bad guy yet? Can I go to the park now? Please.”
“Soon, bud, soon. I promise.”
You can follow D. L. Karabin here on Long Overdue Books and also on her Facebook page at Thriller She Wrote (@SkinnyStories). Stay tuned for more chapters and to follow D. L. Karabin directly, email firstname.lastname@example.org