Both Sergio and I were sitting outside Mariano's office. As usual, the newest job had come about a day and a half after the other one. It was surprising how much our...services were wanted. A few years ago, I would have never guessed at the number of robberies committed every day.
Our little town was quite active.
And, you would think that the 'band of thieves' was some sort of group of ragtag, stubble-dominated, ruff'n'tough guys who didn't even have a speck of humanity in them.
Firstly, the 'band' wasn't comprised of only guys. I was blatant proof of that one, and so was Kirsten. Kirsten didn't work in the same section as us, and I pray it will stay that way.
She's a sharp girl and has got a pair of fast feet. Too bad she's got a fast mouth as well. Kirsten could talk Fidel Castro into a dead faint.
My name being spoken snapped me out of my reverie, only to find Sergio up on his feet and beckoning to me to get inside the office.
"Come on." As soon as I joined him, he murmured something under his breath. "Don't zone out while he's talking."
"You know me better than that, Serge," I said, clicking my tongue and shaking my head. "You disappoint me."
"Yadda, yadda. Come on. Get inside."
"Well, what are you so jittery about?"
"This one's a big haul."
He groaned. "Just shut up and get inside."
"Yeesh! Okay, okay," I complied, reminding myself to apply the 'no questions asked' part of my mantra to every day life, too.
Sergio closed the door behind us gently, and I was once again drawn into the muted space of Mariano's office. The room wasn't stuffy, per se, but it had an air of closeness about it. The gray light filtering through the closed and damaged shutters made the place a little creepy to be in, but I wasn't complaining.
Mariano's office had been the place of my escapades when I was younger. I knew the office like the back of my hand. At least, I hoped I did.
"Sir." The reply was simultaneous and rehearsed. Next came the explaining.
"As I think you've noticed, this is a pretty important one." Mariano laced his fingers together and leaned back in his chair, a perfect image of mafia boss stereotypes.
"The target is a painting - a priceless one, owned by a man by the name of Enrico Rosso. It's said that he wants to sell the painting to be able to pay for some sort of medical treatment for a family member, supposedly his son." Mariano scoffed at this point. "Probably some cover up or whatnot."
"So, it's set up for tomorrow night. Wally will take you to the site, as usual. Roger's already hacked into the security system for the plan of the mansion, so nothing should go wrong. Details will be delivered on-site."
Should. What an iffy word. Never liked it. But, then again, what have I ever liked at a first glance? Well, here was the new job.
My pathetic excuse for a conscience prickled uncomfortably. I didn't like the sound of the rumor. Yes, our band had had to eliminate people before, but it was never a kid.
Hopefully, it was a rumor.
"You can count on us, boss," Sergio replied, shooting me a 'look.' I nodded halfheartedly. No going back now.
I'd just have to find out, wouldn't I?