Mafia Wars: Don Pembruzzio vs Don Budgettini (Episode 2)


(Continued from here).


Oshinuzzi was confused. They knew the family budget had indeed been sabotaged by the one of the mafia families but Pembruzzio must have had a meeting with the moles in his absence if he’d narrowed it down already. It was worrying enough that he had that meeting without his consigliere. It was worse that they’d fingered the elusive Don Budgettini.


No one knew what Don Budgettini looked like. Some even said he was an urban legend, a myth perpetuated by the Budgettini family, who the families usually only heard from once a year. They turned into ghost workers once the family books had been agreed upon.


Now he was in a dilemma. He wasn’t quite sure just how to contact Don Budgettini, much less bring him before Don Pembruzzio. He thought about who to ask for help.  He could ask Benny ‘TV’ Bruzzo, even though he was not really in Don Pembruzzio’s good books. He had taken to publicly requesting the Godfather to congratulate new Dons from the smaller families.  This annoyed the Godfather but Benny knew virtually everybody, from his days running the family’s TV business. There was also Delezzi Momodicci the journalist who recently broke the story of Dezi Esposito. And Don Pembruzzio didn’t seem to mind him too much.


His thoughts were interrupted by the telephone. It was Don Bolazzi del Jagabando. “Is Don Pembruzzio there?” he asked frantically. “Have you seen the security feed from Warehouse Three?” Don del Jagabando was rarely ever ruffled, so this was not a good sign.


Oshinuzzi promised to check it out and hung up. He reached for the remote control and switched on the video from Warehouse Three. The live feed had nothing going on, so he took the feed back one hour, to see 2 Capos talking to each other. One was Capo Adewoletti, who took care of the family’s medical supplies, the other was Capo Tundando, the family’s hardware guy – Tundando ‘The Mechanic’, because of his knack for fixing things.


“Those cock-a-roach rats!” Adewoletti said, cursing. “Those frigging cockamamie rats! I tell them we have to hit the mattresses and make sure we come good with the medical accounts. The rats literally – and I mean literally – ripped up the mattresses and stuffed and padded the accounts with them. What’s worse, they did after we’d wrapped up what I was going to give to the Godfather. Those old goddamn rats.”


“Hmmm. These rats. I’m more concerned about the age of their ideas and not so much their age.” said Tundano, in his usual cryptic way. “So how do we fix it?”


“I’m gonna go public. Tell the entire family that wasn’t what I put together. Send them the real version.”


“Don’t you want to run that by Don Pembruzzio first? You know, we don’t want him to end up with even more pasta on his face. Word is, he wants to see Don Budgettinni over this mess. Now you say it was rats too?”


Manache!!” Oshinuzzi hadn’t heard Pembruzzio come back into the room and was doubly taken aback to hear him swear. “These testa di cazzo are going to kill me!” But he quickly regained his composure. He had decided what he would do.


“Oshinuzzi. Prepare yourself. I am going away on vacation. I need a break.”


“But Godfather, we haven’t yet fixed the accounts. Do you think Don Budgettini is also responsible for the rats? And who should I see first? Don Budgettini or the rats?”


“That is now your problem, Acting Godfather. I’ll be back in a week’s time.”


Mafia Wars: Don Pembruzzio vs. Don Budgettini


Don Pembruzzio wiped his forehead in exasperation. He knew when he put himself forward to be the new Godfather that he would be in for a rough ride but perhaps even he had underestimated the challenge ahead.


When he chose to delay the appointment of his caporegimes for 6 months so that he could whip the troops into shape, he knew there were whispers that he was leaving his flanks exposed. But sometimes, to make thin-crust pizza you have to slice a few chorizzos and grate a few people in their mozzarellas. If this was what it would take to sanitise the family, then so be it.


He looked up again at his consigliare, Oshinuzzi, who was telling him that another storm was brewing over the family finances. It was true that the Capos had come in only a few weeks before they had to make accounts but these were supposed to be elite Capos, who’d spent a long time in the business. Instead of accounts to turn the family business around, what they’d come up with was a fiasco.


“So you say we can get away with arranging a communion for the accounts?” he asked Oshinuzzi.


“Well, yeah, though I would really advise a confirmation; but fuhgedaboutit, we can do a communion.”


“Yeah, puhgedaboutit. Bazzabing bazzaboom.”


So, on the day all the families from the 36 districts were gathered to look at the accounts, there was no trace of it anywhere. Flash drives had been cleaned, emails hacked, offices raided. It was like all the numbers guys and bookies had been on vacation for the previous 3 months.


There was pandemonium but Don Pembruzzio told everyone to be calm, that it would be fixed.


“Get me Udomaggia”, he whispered to Oshinuzzi. Udomaggia was a capo and was Pembruzzio’s numbers guy. “We need to get zis right, once and po all.”


Udomaggia called a quick meeting of the bookies and let them know in no unclear terms that Don Pembruzzio was not pleased. They all went to work, hammering out new accounts, which went out to  Don Pembruzzio, Oshinuzzi and all the families.


He thought he had done a good job and was therefore very surprised when his phone rang. It was the Consigliere.


“Udomaggia” he began, curtly.


“Oshinuzzi.” he answered.


“Yeah, the Godfather wants to see you pronto.”


“I’m at dinner with my family and…”


“Pronto.” And he hung up.


It was a trembling Udomaggia that knocked Don Pembruzzio’s door less than 30 minutes later.


“Capo Udomaggia, iz zis yooah work product? Did you supervise every step of it?”


“Yes, Godfather.”


“So how did zese items remain in it unchanged?”


“Really!” said Oshinuzzi, his shock visible. “How did these things escape the gaze of a legal eagle?”


“I…I…changed…it…it… was changed, godfather. Please, Godfather. I did not fail you.”


Don Pembruzzio looked intently at Udomaggia for what seemed to the latter like an eternity.


Udomaggia shot Oshinuzzi a pleading glance. Finally, Don Pembruzzio broke the silence, holding out his ring for Udomaggia to kiss.


“I believe you. I know for a fact that you were sabotaged. And I know who did it. And I am about to deal with him.”


Don Pembruzzio beckoned to Oshinuzzi. “Get me Don Budgettini, right now.”