Dear Boss

kickass heroine

The unfathomable love of a simple bodyguard to the Mafia’s daughter.

“She isn’t business, she’s personal.”

As the only daughter and the favorite child, Sienna Venditto is meant to have the world. She is to marry a rich senator’s son and never be associated with the Venditto family business. A threat on Sienna’s life has her overprotective father assign a bodyguard who will change her life forever.

War veteran, Matteo Alessi, has reached the lowest point of his life. Convicted of murder and days away from his life sentence, Matteo lost the purpose to live as he always thought himself a protector but sadly the world didn’t see him that way.

But then, there is Sienna’s world, the only world he’s come to realize that mattered.

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Prologue: The Daily News
SIENNA VENDITTO ARMY STAFF SERGEANT was found guilty of killing own men. Matteo Alessi- a Staff Sergeant of the Army has been found guilty of manslaughter for killing two fellow servicemen using a pair of combat boots that crushed their skulls open. He pleaded not guilty for allegedly protecting a service woman from being assaulted- said woman denies these claims. Sentenced for a lifetime in prison, he will be moved to a correctional facility by the end of the week.  VENDITTO GROUP OF COMPANIES has successfully bought out and acquired yet another company under their vast umbrella.  The fast growing conglomerate is headed by the founder Stefano Venditto. Eyes are on him as the country waits for him to name his successor to the company’s vast wealth. Some are looking to his daughter who has completed her law degree after finishing business school. Whoever it is, the public can assume they will continue to fiercely take over the business sector with little plans on stopping. ORGANIZED CRIME SYNDICATES run rampant across the city. Are these organized crime syndicates dangerous? According to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, they aren’t. I close the newspaper for the day and stare out of the car window. I watch the bustling city pass through and slowly change into the neighborhood where my childhood home is. My mind whirls between the news about the company and my uncle’s statement on the crime syndicates.  How many people knew that those two articles are actually correlating? Or was it placed together because they were in actuality correlating? How funny was it that the successful business man also happens to be the head of a crime family controlling the Supreme Court and most of the politicians?   “Man of few words, your uncle.” Antonio Turro humors from beside me on the back seat of the car we were in.  I turn to him and share a smile. “He sure knows how to ease the hearts of the people.”  Growing up, I often told Antonio how much he resembles an old bear. He’s large, middle aged with a protruding stomach. Despite the bags under his eyes and the folds of wrinkles on his face, he still looked much younger than his actual age. It must be the ever present smile on his face.  As my papa’s best friend and the unofficial second in command, he’s been there for as long as I can remember. We have a photo together at home placed on a mantel of when I was a newborn, still in the hospital bundled up. A much younger and happier Antonio carried me in his arms proudly. It’s as if he was telling the whole world through the photo that no one was to get to me without going through him first. Years later and he’s kept to that promise. “It’s his job.” The sound of his voice is sharp and raspy at the same time. Dressed in his usual tailored suit which all the men that worked for my papa usually wore, Antonio looks very intimidating, showing how large and capable he is. All of them looked as though they stepped out of an old gangster movie. “So, why did you come and pick me up?” I ask my companion curiously. It wasn’t unusual to have someone accompany my driver. In fact, I know papa specifically asks for an additional man in the car when I go to places. Protection is what he always says. Thankfully, these men that were sent to protect me stayed in the car and would leave me to my own devices when I reached my destination. What I find unusual about today is Antonio. Lately for a couple of months with the numerous family activities, he’s been too busy to chaperone my comings and goings.  He smiles, adjusting himself in his seat to face me. “Nothing to worry about. Your papa just wants you home.”  I take my time to study his expression. I couldn’t read into it much but I can tell something is wrong despite the cool way he gazed at me. Something must have happened for him to personally come and get me from my office. “That’s nothing new but why would Papa send a busy man like yourself to come get me?” Antonio waves away my concern. “I suppose he wants you home faster.” I couldn’t help but laugh and reach over to teasingly flick at the box of pastries on his lap. “If anything, we’ll get home slower. You’ve stopped the car three times to get takeout.” “I have men to feed.” Antonio stops seeing the look on my face. He softens. He could never really lie or keep things from me. “Listen, something happened with the family business.”  I had to repress a sigh. It was a business that many have reminded me, I had no part in. It didn’t matter if I was smart and could outwit most men, papa has made it clear the illegal part of the business was no place for me. All throughout my childhood he has been adamant that I was to have a better life, married to some doctor or lawyer, earning clean money. I was fourteen when I understood what our family does for a living. As much as they hide it from me, I realized how strange it was that we always had security and a multitude of people living in our compound- all of which worked for my papa.  “He wants you home to discuss a few new rules.” Antonio continued, placing a hand on my shoulder comfortingly.  I narrow my eyes at his words. I already lived in a heavy set of rules. Too many to mention. What more could papa add? It wasn’t that I hated it, I know the concern and protectiveness comes from a genuine place. “Rules, huh?” “Cheer up, kiddo. It’ll make him happy.” And that was that. If it made my papa happy, I would surely do it. I love him too much for anything less. Antonio knew this too which is why he said it. Smart old man. The drive back to the Venditto compound is a long one, longer today than usual because of Antonio stopping every few minutes to buy more food for his men. He spoiled them which is partly the reason why they’re so loyal to him. My family lives in a large acre compound outside of the city district. The compound houses all of my papa’s men, including all of their family members and of course our main family, including the extended one. It’s massive with a vast backyard for children to play in, plant vegetables and for adults to gather around. A thick intricate black steel gate kept outsiders out, there were patrolling men walking around the side of the daunting stone walls and the gate itself had a cluster of armed men. It’s clear to anyone that passed through the area that this was not a place to mess with.  The guards at the gate immediately pushed the gate open when they spotted the approaching car. They know my service car with just one glance. I’ve grown up with the men that work for papa. Most were my playmates. Unlike my brother, I wasn’t the intimidating type. I’ve always been courteous, friendly and warm to all of them, even their families.  It’s also not a secret that I’m papa’s favorite. I never defied him and always followed whatever he asked of me. I didn’t complain when he sent me away for college- right when his business was growing. To the public, I was sent away for better opportunities but to my family, I was sent away to be kept away from family feuds. Nonetheless, I came back, fresh from college, enrolled for law school and fully aware of the things that happened while I was away. Antonio and my older brother Sergio have told me how relaxed papa has been since I got back. They both found relief in it. They missed me a lot but my coming home has given the house much tranquility.   The car drove passed, stopping right in front of the main house. Several lounging men walked up to the car to open the doors. Out came Antonio first with his hands full of bags of food.  Men rushed to Antonio’s side carrying his bags for him. He hollered after a much younger man to his side. “Boy, take this. Bring it to my wife.” The boy in question nodded excitedly. Happy to do something for the second in command. “Come back after and have dinner with the others.”  I came out of the car next, hands clutching a heavy briefcase filled with paperworks while the other balanced a mug and a thick newspaper. Almost immediately, I was helped by the man nearest to me. He took my heavy briefcase from my hands. I flashed him a grateful smile. “Thanks, Nicolo.” Nicolo Gozzi gaped and nearly shook in surprise that I knew him by his name. He smiled back and happily followed after his boss Antonio and I into the main house. “See me after you meet with your father, alright?” Antonio tells me, carrying a bag of food into the dining room. I grinned good-humoredly, my elbow teasingly digging at the large man’s sides. “Why? Did you get me food too?” Antonio shrugged, as if it was already obvious. “I always do.”   I jumped in my step, heeled shoes clicking against the cobbled steps leading to the house. “Okay. See you.” The main house resembles an ancestry home, decorated heavily with multiple vases, countless baby photos of  my older brother and I, and numerous family photos. The floor is wood and carpeted. Flowers were in every possible table and corner. It was my mother’s taste and so unlike how I would have liked it. Thankfully, papa’s study was much more my style; leather couches, a giant working fireplace, glass coffee tables, a shiny ebony wooden desk complete with a large throne-like seat that my papa liked. Everything about it was muscline, dark and mysterious. It’s my favorite place in the entire house. I often came to the study when I was much younger just to stare at it.  The study is found in the corner of the house, tucked away as if it wasn’t even there. I used the intimate entrance at the back. There’s another entrance for visitors at the front but I much preferred this secret way. It made me feel special.  I knock before entering, hearing my papa’s deep voice from the other side to come in. I pushed open the door to my papa’s office to find that he wasn’t alone. With him is my annoying brother, who’s seven years older than me. Sergio or Gio as we call him has identical features with me. Brown hair, amber eyes and the family bow shaped lips. The difference between us being that compared to my short stature, Gio is tall, large and masculine. Built like a bull. I hate to say it but he is by all means handsome- but unfortunately for everyone wanting his attention- my big brother is happily married to his girlfriend from his younger years in school.  I never liked Gio’s wife. Mama would agree with me on this. It’s not for the lack of trying either. Although Lucia was never openly mean to me, I see her be awful to others. For instance, early this week I saw Lucia smack Nicolo on the back of his head in front of everyone for not greeting her when she arrived in the house. Nicolo was carrying mama’s grocery bags and had his vision obscured to see her.  She’s much too proud of her status, flaunting the family name like a weapon. If it wouldn’t hurt Gio’s feelings I’d openly tell him how his wife was only with him because of his name. It was something I hated from people. I want loyalty for who I am and not for my last name. Gio who is blind with love, doesn’t see this and is much too honorable to have anyone else but her.  “Eh?” I pursed my lips, fainting annoyance at the sight of my older brother. “What are you doing here?” Gio merely grins, standing from his seat to meet me halfway and engulfs me in a hug. He presses a tender kiss against my hair. I know Gio for all his faults- loves me unconditionally and puts my protection above all else. It was imprinted into him at a young age by our parents and Antonio. Growing up, we were always compared but never once did he show any jealousy towards it. To him, I’m his precious baby sister and whoever spoke against that would have their face personally broken by him. “What do you mean ‘what am I doing here?’ I live here.” I looked down at my wrist watch and sure enough it was only six in the afternoon. Much too early for him to be home. He manages most of the dangerous part of the family business now that our papa is old. “Not at this time. Don’t you work or am I the only hard working one here?” “Ah, papa called me.” Gio says playfully pulling at the ends of my wavy hair. I swat him away and walk around the large ebony table to greet papa properly. He was watching us with an amused and annoyed expression. Our papa is way past his sixties now. Not many would notice it though as papa is always in handsome expensive suits, perfectly groomed hair that he likes to have pushed back like Gio and has eyes so sharp it was hard to see the age in them. I take my time to hug papa, hugs were common for us but I never dared not make the most out of it. He’s getting old and as I’m busy with work, I nearly don't spend as much time as I want to with him. “Hi, papa.” “Welcome home, my bellissima. How was work?” He inquired as per usual. We didn’t pull away just yet. It’s as if it was our first hug after a long separation all over again. When I did pull away, I came to sit beside Gio on the leather couch. “Good. I closed another deal.” I handled the family’s business front. A humble insurance company that has grown considerably over the years since I’ve taken charge. With my careful handling under papa’s guidance, the company has been able to branch out to other industries and enterprises. We now had our own hospital- for obvious reasons, law firm for the same reason, construction and real estate. Just today, I’ve closed yet another deal for a part in the energy sector. I plan to do more, so much more. Pretty soon, the Venditto Group of Companies will be everywhere. My goal is to have everyone in the city- the country to have at least one dealing with our company. Of course, all of this I knew was only a front. We weren’t truly just a conglomerate or a large corporation. Gio under papa’s watchful eye handles the darker part of our family business. I can most likely guess what it all was but I never really checked on what they actually did.  “That’s our girl.” Gio mused, reaching over to mess my hair up.  Again, I swat him away not that it did anything when my brother is twice my size. Unfortunately for me, I wasn’t gifted with the height papa and Gio had. I was given my mama’s petite figure. Nonetheless, I assert my dominance on my brother by giving him my best glare. “I will break your face.” “You can try.” Gio grinned, mischief flashing through his identical amber eyes. “Children.” Papa chastised, with a shake of his head. He made it sound as though we were children again and not adults. “We have an important matter to discuss.” We immediately stopped our rough housing, eyes focused on papa. Papa studied us with a solemn expression. I can tell that whatever he was about to tell us would alter much of our plans and futures. “I’m gravely ill. I have been for a long time now.”

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