Family. That one word was the most significant word in the Italian Mafia's dictionary. Trust and Loyalty were in there as well, but it all came back to family.. either you were in or you were out. Being in the 'family' was the safest, and most dangerous place you could ever be. Here, in Richmond Hill New York -AKA 'Little Italy' The mafia was the authority figure, it was their domain. The cops held little power over them, and didnt want to either because the Mafia paid them to back off and not interfere with the drug trade, human trafficking, and many other things that would go on. If you were in the Mafia then you had protection, but with protection comes a price, either you were born in or you paid for protection.. if you proved to be protection worthy that is. The boss, Antonio Basilone ran the Mafia, and with a wave of his hand he could destroy anyones life within his city by putting a hit on that person.. kill them, dump their body in the sewer and they would never be seen again. Yes, the Italian Mafia was a pretty intense and cold hearted circle.. but there was something else the Mafia had They had an angel. Lia was Antonios little girl -well, she wasnt very little at all. She was 17, but in his eyes and in the eyes of her family, she was the baby. His only child. Sure they had a big family, cousins, uncles, and everything in between, but there were very few girls - she was the most protected, because any smart threat would go after her first. She was a theatre arts major and wanted to be a singer, so what did Antonio do? He sent her to the best performing arts schools, gave her the world that he didnt have growing up as a child.. yes he gave her everything, all with his 'dirty' or illegal money. Her was a beautiful blonde hair and blue eyed all american woman from California, which is where she inherited her own blonde hair and blue eyes, though her italian features would show through that. Lia had a boyfriend named Carlos -but of course he was affiliated as welll, her father wouldnt allow her to date anyone outside of the mafia or the connections he had because it was just too risky in his eyes. Her boyfriend wasnt in the italian mafia, but his dad was a Columbain drug lord whom was very close to Antonio, and their children dating made the connection that much tighter. Though Lia did like Carlos, she did it more for her dad than anything. Just like every other morning, she woke up today and walked out of her room in a pink robe, sleepy eyed with a messy pony tail which barely sustained her long thick hair which had been dyed at the tips a dark brown color. She liked to switch her style up a lot, and not stick to the same thing.. it was just the way she was, along with her very bubbly personality. As she walked into the kitchen she kissed her mothers cheek, who was cooking. Their house was beautiful.. not a mansion by far, but a 2 story spacious house with a pool 2 dogs and a white picket fense. The so called 'American Dream' - Antonio had other places that resided on the not-so-nice part of Richmond Hill where he did his business, but he of course kept his family far from that in the suburban community so they wouldnt be exposed to his business, but only reap the rewards. "Why do you always look like a little demon in the morning? smile.. you woke up didnt you? thats not a reason to smile?" Her mother teased, Lia only gave her an evil glare before grabbing some apple, sitting down and biting into it "Yeah I did... but I barely got any sleep last night because Daddy brought everyone over and they were making so much noise" she complained, "Its true, dont mess with a girls beauty sleep,, but he had good reason.. the Russians were starting trouble, he wanted to make sure we were safe" Her mother reasoned, before setting the food out on the table. Lia only sighed, sipping her orange juice and then digging in to her food, she knew her fathers business -and well, she just wished it wouldnt come so close to home sometimes. ****** Across town in another house her father rented just for business, her father sat in the middle of a round table, puffing on a cuban cigar in a darkened room -not too dark, just dark toned. The table was bright red, and there was an ash tray in the middle. Guns lay on the table as well, as his brothers and some others cleaned there weapons, waiting for the next Body Guard to be interviewed. "Antonio.. you know Lia is going to be pissed when she finds out you've done this right?" His brother Anthony asked as he loaded and re loaded his gun. None of the guys they had interviewed so far were right for the job. The man chosen to guard Antonio's daughter had to be absolutely perfect for the job. No acceptions. "Next!" Anthony called out to the hallway of men waiting to be interviewed. Many had shown up because it was a well paying job -25 dollars an hour, but only one man could be right for the job. "Remember to state your name, your experience in this field, and why we should pick you over anybody else." Antonio informed the next man, as the main men of the mafia waited to hear what the next guy had to offer.