15 Deborah's astonishment

In the cozy ambiance of the deli, Lorenzo had just polished off his bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup when Deborah slipped away to swap her dress for a thick, black coat. Shortly thereafter, the two of them stepped out into the crisp air together.

As they walked side by side, Deborah's curiosity couldn't be contained. "What exactly happened to your friend? Why was he beaten up?" she inquired.

Lorenzo let out a weary sigh at the question. Discussing the incident wasn't something he was keen on, but considering Deborah was becoming an important part of his life, he felt no need to hold back.

"He got beaten up after he stumbled upon a crime at the arms factory," Lorenzo admitted with a heavy sigh.

"A crime?" Deborah echoed, her voice laced with shock, "What kind of crime?"

"There's a guy at the factory who's tangled up with the mafia. He rounded up a group to pilfer weapons from our stock," Lorenzo explained.

Deborah's astonishment was palpable. "Were they caught? Did they end up in jail?"

"No..." Lorenzo's voice trailed off before he continued, "My friend caught that worker and his crew in the act of stealing weapons. When they realized he had seen them, they beat him up."

Deborah's eyes widened in disbelief. "They deserve to be behind bars!"

Lorenzo sighed, a note of resignation in his voice. "Life's not always fair. That mafia family has ties to the government and the police. We're powerless against them..."

With a spark of anger, Deborah asserted, "The government should wipe out those mafia scum!"

Lorenzo couldn't help but chuckle at the irony in her words. "Funny thing is, I managed to cover my friend's medical bills thanks to a mafia don," he revealed.

That reminder caused Deborah to recall that, a mafia family had indeed stepped in to settle Lorenzo's friend's medical expenses. This very moment, as she prepared to accompany Lorenzo, was born out of his desire to show her firsthand that he had received aid from none other than Don Corleone—the most formidable and influential mafia figure in New York. Lorenzo was keen to dispel her skepticism and prove the reality of his connection with Don Corleone. Her doubts were understandable, considering the weight of claiming assistance from such a powerful figure in New York.

"Oh, that's right. You were eager to show off your meeting with Don Corleone," Deborah responded with a light chuckle.

Lorenzo shared a smile, his eyes reflecting a mix of thoughtfulness and realism. "As much as you wish for the government to wipe out the mafia, I doubt that alone would purge the inherent darkness in some people," he mused.

Deborah, reflecting on Lorenzo's words, conceded, "Still, getting rid of them should at least bring down crime rates..."

Acknowledging her point, Lorenzo nodded. "True, the disappearance of mafia families might indeed dent crime statistics, but I'm skeptical they'll vanish from the scene anytime soon."

Deborah silently agreed with a nod.

As the conversation flowed, Lorenzo's mind wandered to a different plane. He pondered the idea of establishing his own mafia family. Not just any organization mired in the underworld's shadows, but one that straddled the line—engaged in legitimate business yet wielding enough influence to sway government decisions without fear from other criminal entities. Lorenzo envisioned a life where he held sway over his destiny, empowered by wealth and influence.

Armed with his modern knowledge from his previous life, he knew he had the acumen to launch a venture that could thrive in the current era.


While Lorenzo and Deborah were lost in their own world, little did they know that Peggy, Patric, and Philip had their eyes on them. The trio quietly observed as Lorenzo and Deborah disappeared into the distance before they began to whisper among themselves.

"Isn't that the guy Max had a confrontation with?" Peggy broke the silence, her gaze following the two figures as they walked away.

"Exactly. The very same lowlife," Patric confirmed with a nod, his disdain barely concealed.

"And look who's with him... Deborah. She's the reason Max ended up tangling with this Lorenzo in the first place," Philip added, his tone laced with bitterness.

Peggy, drawing on her own life experiences, noted, "He's with Deborah... Their relationship seems far from ordinary."

At Peggy's observation, both Patric and Philip appeared taken aback, prompting Philip to ask, "What are you implying?"

Peggy, with a keen eye, elaborated, "Well, from what I could see, Lorenzo is quite the charmer, and Deborah genuinely seems to enjoy his company."

This revelation only fueled Patric and Philip's frustration.

"So, Max was right after all! Deborah is romantically involved with that Lorenzo!" Patric exclaimed, his voice heavy with betrayal.

Philip, equally agitated, added, "And here we are, with our buddy Noodles locked up, while she's out here cozying up to another man!"

Peggy, observing their growing anger, couldn't help but question, "Why are you guys so invested in Deborah's love life?"

Upon hearing Peggy's question, Patric and Philip were quick to respond, with Patric revealing, "Didn't you know? Noodles had a thing for Deborah!"

Philip chimed in, his voice filled with a mix of loyalty and indignation, "And it's just wrong for any other guy to make a move on Deborah while Noodles is locked away!"

Peggy, unable to contain her disbelief at their line of thinking, retorted, "You guys are being ridiculous..."


Meanwhile, Lorenzo and Deborah embarked on a journey to Mount Sinai Hospital to pay a visit to Adam. Given the era's less developed public transportation system, their trip from the Lower East Side to Lexington Avenue was anything but straightforward. The lack of a direct train route meant the pair had to navigate through a series of subway transfers. After a somewhat complicated journey involving multiple changes, they finally disembarked near Lexington Avenue, a little closer to their destination.

As Lorenzo and Deborah made their way towards Lexington Avenue, they engaged in light-hearted banter, the journey to Mount Sinai Hospital seeming to fly by amidst their conversation.

Upon entering the hospital, they walked up to the reception together.

As they approached the hospital's reception, the young receptionist immediately recognized Lorenzo, offering a nod of acknowledgment. However, her gaze quickly shifted to the striking young woman by his side, prompting her to ask, "Wait, who is this?"

Lorenzo glanced at Deborah, beginning to introduce her with a hint of mischief, "She's my wife—"

Deborah, quick to prevent any further embarrassment, interjected, "I'm Deborah Gelly, and I'm here with my friend, Lorenzo..."

The receptionist gave Lorenzo a quick glance before nodding, "Alright, you two can go in to see the patient. Just so you know, it's almost 4 o'clock, so you might want to hurry."

Acknowledging her advice, Lorenzo and Deborah made their way towards Adam's room.

As they walked, Deborah couldn't help but express her annoyance, nudging Lorenzo, "You really shouldn't do that; you nearly embarrassed me."

Lorenzo, unable to suppress a chuckle, replied, "What's the harm? I was just about to introduce you—"

"I'm not your wife," Deborah cut in sharply.

Lorenzo laughed softly, "Still in denial, I see," leaving Deborah to give him a look that mixed exasperation with a touch of resignation.

Their conversation continued, a mix of light banter and moments of silence, as they ascended the stairs and navigated the hallway. Eventually, they arrived at the door of Adam's room. Entering together, they found several patients sharing the space.

Deborah followed Lorenzo as he moved confidently through the room, stopping at a bed near the windows at the far right corner.

Lorenzo reached out to gently tap Adam, who seemed lost in thought, "Adam."

The moment Adam caught sight of Lorenzo, his face lit up with a warm smile. "Lorenzo, you're here!"

Lorenzo nodded, greeting him with a concerned, "How are you holding up?"

Beaming, Adam replied, "I'm doing quite well, actually!" He took a brief pause, his smile widening as he shared his good news. "I was just told by the hospital staff that my medical bills have been completely covered! I don't owe the hospital a dime now!"

"That's fantastic news," Lorenzo responded, his smile matching Adam's enthusiasm.

Adam's voice carried a mix of disbelief and relief as he exclaimed, "I can't believe it, the hundreds of dollars I owed to the hospital, all cleared!" As the realization dawned on him, his expression shifted to one of deep thought. Turning to Lorenzo, he connected the dots. "It was you, wasn't it? You said you'd handle my medical expenses, and I shouldn't worry."

Lorenzo remained quiet, a gentle acknowledgment in his silence. Adam, seeing this, felt a rush of gratitude. "Thank you, Lorenzo. Really, thank you for everything," he said, his voice carrying a heartfelt appreciation.

"Don't mention it," Lorenzo replied, his smile sincere as he regarded Adam. "You'd do the same for me."

While Lorenzo engaged in heartfelt conversation with Adam, who was expressing his deep appreciation, Deborah listened from just behind Lorenzo, her surprise evident. She realized Lorenzo had been truthful about seeking Don Corleone's assistance to settle his friend's medical expenses.

Observing Adam, still visibly bearing the marks of his ordeal with bruises and slight swelling on his face, yet radiating genuine gratitude towards Lorenzo, it was clear there was no reason for Lorenzo to fabricate such a story.

Deborah cast a glance at Lorenzo, and she found herself genuinely impressed by the possibility that he might have truly met with Don Corleone.

As Adam's words of thanks continued, he caught sight of someone standing behind Lorenzo. Despite the swelling that marred his vision, recognition dawned on him instantly. "Wait- De-Deborah?" he stammered, his voice laced with astonishment. Deborah had always been more than just a friend in his eyes, and her unexpected presence was a shock.

Lorenzo, with a friendly smile, introduced her to Adam, "Adam, this is Deborah. She wanted to see how you were doing, so she came along with me."

Lorenzo felt a pang of sympathy for Adam, fully aware of his friend's soft spot for Deborah. He carefully chose his words, aiming to spare Adam any additional pain. Rather than boastfully announcing, "I invited Deborah to see you, and she came with me," he opted for a more subtle introduction. Lorenzo wanted to avoid giving the impression that Deborah's visit was solely on his account, mindful of not flaunting his influence over the situation.

Adam, processing Lorenzo's introduction, offered a stuttered, "I- I see..." His eyes, betraying a mix of surprise and nervousness, flicked towards Deborah. "H-hi..."

Deborah greeted him with a warm, encouraging smile. "Hi there, Adam. How are you holding up?"

Adam's response came quickly, a mix of eagerness and a touch of embarrassment. "Yeah- yeah, I'm doing really well, actually..." Even as he felt slightly self-conscious about his appearance, a wave of happiness washed over him. The fact that Deborah had made the effort to visit, despite his condition, meant the world to him.

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