An Empire of Brotherly Love

Fragments Part 1 - The Takeover

Isabella POV

Woke up, 6pm. Oak king sacrifice tonight at Oak Park. So clever. I’m not particularly into this whole Circle thing, but Vivian has been pestering me for a week about it. I take the car. Tony is driving tonight, on loan from Angelo. He’s a droll fellow. We swing by the club – Lucky 7 – on the way; I go in the back, make a mental note to redo the parking lot, and none of Leoni’s thugs say anything to me on the way in. Angelo is in the kitchen; I snuck up on him, an accident, and after he drops the knife he took to my throat we feed from each other. Exquisite. I chose well in my mortal companion. He wanted more – he always does – and tonight I granted his wish.

It is only after our rendezvous – as he’s tying the halter of my dress back together – that he tells me of the news. Shipments in and out, profits made, looming war with the Pollocks. Angelo has planned to expand his territory, to wrench the train station from their grasp for additional shipping potential. I am pleased.

Arriving at the park on time was a moot point. The Oak King is missing. Frustrating, as I’ve things to do today. Gloria sent out a party to look for him…and shortly after he arrives. But I’m bored. This is a dreadfully dull affair, and Gloria is nothing but a bag of wind. Uppity bitch. So I leave, return to my home. Plans to make, people to see.

Thomas interrupts me as I work. Security alarm is going off, he says, but nothing is on the screen. Just a bug, he says, and offers to call the company. But I know better. I’d pissed off the little bitch by leaving early. I summon Tony and have the two of them meet me in the security room. All of the cameras feed the monitors on the walls. No windows, one door, walls reinforced by six inches of cement and steel. Very little furniture to get in the way. It was to be a Panic Room when the house was built back in the early 1900s. Time makes mockeries of all of us.

She sent two men to do the job. It was almost an insult. They didn’t expect opposition in the form of well-trained mob thugs. Tony and Thomas light them up, round after round piercing their skin. But the would-be assassins don’t die. They flee the scene, my boys hot on their heels, and I watch on the security cameras as they lose the trail.

Thomas calls Angelo; we retire to his home outside of Philly for the night. I am furious. Poisonous bitch, who does she think she is? I wrenched the docks from her power as soon as she came into it and there was naught she could do; now I’ll take the city as well. I am not some docile fool to be cowed into submission by two Kindred come to kill me. They made the mistake of letting me live, and she’s going to pay for it.

Next Night, So Far…
I wake. Angelo is staring at me intently; it is rather unsettling. He has been with me for years, but I can count on one hand the number of times he has seen me sleep. He presents me with a letter.

It seems as if there’s a new Prince in town, and I’m being summoned to attend him. Angelo summons a small team and we take three cars. They wait outside. I proceed alone into the lair.


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