The Grand Theft Auto series is the property of Rockstar North (formerly DMA Design), as are any characters you recognise from any of the games.
CHAPTER ONE – The Last of the Sindaccos.
"Are you sure about this, Toni?"
Toni Cipriani glanced at Don Joey Leone and nodded. "Trust me, Joey, this kid's unstoppable. If anyone can make those goddamn Colombians think twice about tryin' to re-establish themselves in Liberty, then trust me, it's him. Besides, you know the kid's got good reason to go after the Colombians after what they did to his pop."
"Yeah, but he's just a kid!" protested Joey. "And he's a Sindacco…"
Toni closed his eyes and tried not to sigh – Salvatore would have been proud to see his son go from the Mechanic he was four years ago to the respected Don he was now, but there were times when Toni wished his old boss were still around. "Joey, you know the Sindaccos haven't been a force in this town since, oh, about five years ago. Besides, you've met the kid…"
"What about all these rumours I've been hearing 'bout the kid, Toni?" interrupted Joey. "According to Mario, the kid was responsible for that little incident over in Portland View last week, on the behalf of some Diablos, I might add. Then there's talk about him being on friendly terms with a Yakuza, and one of Luigi's girls who lives in Shoreside Vale said she saw him in the company of those damn Red Jacks over in Wichita Gardens."
"Yeah, I've heard the same shit too," sighed Toni. "Look, it's real simple – we can ask him to do this for us, just like we've done in the past, and if he says 'no' to what we're asking of him, then fine. And if we do find out he is working against us, then I'll just get one of my boys to off the kid."
"And if anyone tries to retaliate after you off him?" added Joey.
"Oh, come on, Joey, who's gonna to miss him?" exclaimed Toni. "Most of the Sindaccos are over in Venturas doing all that fancy Casino crap. As far as Liberty's criminal underworld is concerned, this kid is the last of the Sindacco family. The only other Sindaccos still in Liberty are the kid's momma and his older sister."
"Alright, Toni, you've convinced me," said Joey. "We'll try and get the kid to do this for us, but I want to know more about who else he's done stuff for."
"You worried he might be working with the Forellis?" asked Toni.
"I was thinking more about his non-Mafia connections," replied Joey. "If he is linked with the Yakuza, then he could be a big security risk to us if he's tellin' them what we're doing."
"Don't worry, Joey," said Toni. "If the kid does turn out to be a security risk, then he won't be for much longer."
"Alright, Toni. Now if that's all, I still have to deal with the issue of those Triad ambushes that keep happening whenever any of our guys try and use the Subway." said Joey.
"Actually, there is one more thing I should mention." Toni suddenly said after getting up. "Luigi called me this morning saying he's havin' some problems with some Diablo pimp trying to muscle in on Sex Club Seven's territory. He asked me if we could spare a few guys to take care of the problem. Just thought I should tell ya."
"Yeah, sure, fine, you do whatever needs to be done, Toni," replied Joey. "But I want the Sindacco kid to be your top priority – I wanna know whether he's with us on this or not and who else he's associated with by this time tomorrow, capiche?"
"Don't worry, Joey, I'll get ya your info," assured Toni before leaving the house and walking down to his car.
Yup, Salvatore definitely would've been proud of his boy, thought Toni as he entered the Sentinel and drove off.
"Man, where the hell is this Spaghetti son of a bitch?" grumbled an increasingly impatient young Mexican. "Is he comin' or what?"
"Relax, ese, he'll be here soon enough," reassured the man's companion. "The cash he gives us for this stuff'll make it all worthwhile, so just chill the fuck out."
"I don't see what there is to relax about, Jose!" exclaimed 'Jose's' compatriot. "We're sitting in the middle of Hepburn Heights with a case full of the finest Grade A Colombian Coke and you're tellin' me to relax?"
"You're just being paranoid Pepe," replied Jose. "No-one's gonna know what's in this case if it's closed, and besides, no-one knows we've got it except this 'Bruno Sammartino'."
"If this pendejo decides to show up," added Pepe impatiently. "Man, what is taking this Spaghetti gringo so long?"
However, just as Jose opened his mouth to respond, the two Mexicans were suddenly surrounded by several police cars.
"Freeze!" yelled a cop through a megaphone. "Put the briefcase on the ground and put your hands on your heads!"
Having no choice but to comply, the same exclamation echoed through the heads of both Jose and Pepe – Shit!
In the near distance, a young man sat on a motorbike and smirked as he watched the police open the case, at which point the two young Mexicans were promptly placed under arrest. As the would-be drug dealers were handcuffed and placed in the back of one of the police cars, the young man took a mobile phone out of his pocket and started dialling.
"Yo," said a voice on the other end.
"Hey there, Ricardo," said the young man. "You can tell the rest of your amigos that you won't hafta worry about no goddamn Mexicans trying t' push drugs on your turf anymore."
"You mean that plan'a yours worked?" asked the voice on the other end.
"Went without a hitch," was the reply.
"'Ey, nice going, amigo. I knew we could count on you," said Ricardo approvingly. "Anyways, Carlos's havin' a party at his place just now. You comin'?"
"Sorry, Ricardo, but I better get home now." said the young man.
"Some other time then," said Ricardo. "I'll see y'around, Sonny."
Sonny Sindacco put the phone back in his pocket and started up the engine on the bike. After one last glance at the spot where the two Mexicans had been waiting for him, he set off for home, weaving his way through the traffic of the Red Light District, past Sex Club Seven and the Subway station exit before entering Saint Mark's. Climbing the hill directly underneath the L-Train tracks, Sonny soon arrived at the apartment he shared with his mother and older sister, just opposite the Saint Mark's Bistro. Parking his BF-750 just behind the building so it wasn't visible from the street, Sonny glanced at his watch.
"Shit!" he muttered as he realised that it was already half past eleven. Bracing himself for the inevitable 'where've you been?' reaction, Sonny entered the building. Sure enough, after climbing several flights of stairs, Sonny entered the apartment to find his mother waiting…
"Sonny Antonio Sindacco…" she snapped.
All three names, cringed Sonny. She must be really pissed off about something…
"… what have you been up to?" his mother continued. "Why were some of Leone's boys around here just now looking for you, huh?"
"What?" exclaimed Sonny, completely taken by surprise. Joey Leone, or more likely Toni Cipriani, had just sent someone to find him? Why? Sonny couldn't recall giving them any reason to pay a visit recently, so what was going on?
"Oh, and I suppose you don't know what I'm talking about, right?" continued Sonny's mother. "Well, that isn't going to work on me, young man, I've heard that one about a million times between both your father and your brothers, so you'd better tell me why they were lookin' for you, right now!"
"I don't know what they were lookin' f'r me for," replied Sonny. "Did they say what they wanted with me?"
"Sonny…" said his mother warningly. "I want the truth."
"Look, for once, I'm tellin' the truth when I say I don't know what you're talkin' about, Ma," exclaimed Sonny. "I don' know why they came around here lookin' f'r me, alright?"
Mrs Sindacco looked at her son sceptically, but decided to take his word for it. "Damn Leones," she began muttering once as she turned around and entered the living room. "Thinking they own the place, just because my boys are all in Venturas right now, but they'll be sorry. The second Giorgio and Roberto come back, those Leone boys'll be put back in their place…"
Sonny rolled his eyes while his mother continued her rant as she went into the kitchen. He sat down heavily on one of the armchairs and sighed – couldn't his mother go one day without going on about the Leones and how they'd be sorry once the Sindacco family re-established themselves in Liberty? Why couldn't she just accept the fact that for the last five years, they had been the only Sindaccos left in Liberty and that was how it would remain? Giorgio and Roberto had left for Las Venturas back in 2000, along with the rest of the remnants of the Liberty City branch of the Sindacco Mafia Family as their power dwindled to almost nothing, instead opting to concentrate on their interests in Las Venturas, and indeed, most of the state of San Andreas. However, rather than accept this, his mother chose to believe that the Sindaccos' move to Las Venturas was merely temporary and that they would be back in Liberty, at which point, they would re-establish themselves as the dominant Mafia family.
Sonny, however, didn't share this view. He saw clearly that the Sindacco family was finished in Liberty and that they had no interest in returning. Seeing that they were as good as finished, they had abandoned the city and left it to the Leones and the Forellis, whose influence was slowly being rebuilt, despite the Leones best attempts. Indeed, since the death of 'Lips' Forelli, they, under the leadership of Dante Forelli, had managed to take over most of Trenton and now controlled Portland Harbour. Of course, this didn't go down well with Sonny's mother either, even though Sonny's father had been friendly with several of the Forellis, including the late Sonny Forelli, after whom Sonny had been named. However, Sonny himself couldn't help but agree with his mother about the Forellis to an extent. Four years ago, the only thing they had left in Liberty was the Saint Mark's Bistro and the name Forelli meant nothing, whereas now, the name Forelli was once again treated with the utmost respect. So if the Forellis could do that, then what was to stop the Sindaccos from doing the same? Sonny often found himself wondering. The Sindacco family had still had turf over in Aspatria, which was a lot more than the Forellis had at the time, so why couldn't the Sindaccos have re-established themselves the same way the Forellis had? The answer, as far as Sonny was concerned, was because they were cowards – rather than fight back and retake their territory, they had instead decided to take the easy way out and threw in the towel. And because his mother stubbornly clung to the belief that the Sindacco family would return and eventually dominate Liberty as they once did, Sonny had spent much of his teenage years watching as the Leones, the Triads, the Diablos and the Forellis took over and fought over what had once been Sindacco territory.
"What's wrong, Sonny?" asked Anna, looking up from the magazine she was reading and seeing the contemplating look on her youngest brother's face.
"Ah, nothin'," replied Sonny. "I just wish… ah, never mind." He glanced towards the kitchen, where his mother was still ranting about the Leones with the occasional remark about Sonny being a disappointment here and there, and sighed. "So, what were these Leone guys lookin' f'r me for?"
"Um… I think they said something about Toni Cipriani wanting you to meet him at Momma's Restaurant tomorrow at about noon," said Anna.
"Toni?" muttered Sonny. "What the hell does he want with me?"
"They didn't say," Anna shrugged before turning her attention back to her magazine.
Ah, Christ, thought Sonny as he sat there, his mother still ranting in the background. So Toni wants t' see me tomorrow, huh? Last time anyone connected with the Leones wanted to see me, I ended up causing the mother of all pile-ups on the Callahan Bridge. God only knows what they want me t' do this time…
Eventually, Sonny decided to go to bed. Closing his bedroom door behind him, he sat down on his bed and closed his eyes. Ever since his father had died at the hands of the Colombian Cartel, everything had gone to shit. His youngest older brother, Mike Junior, known to everyone as 'Mikey', had got himself killed by a Triad ambush, while the rest of the Sindacco Mafia family, including his two oldest brothers, had abandoned Liberty not long afterwards. His mother was constantly making less than favourable comparisons between him and every other Sindacco, including his father and brothers, and Sonny himself had been reduced to having to carry out the occasional errand for the Leones, as well as associating himself with the Diablos and the Red Jacks. In fact, the only thing that made Sonny's life worth living right now was Alyssa…
Suddenly, his phone began to ring. Smiling when he saw the name displayed on the screen, Sonny answered it.
"Konichiwa, Hermoso," said Sonny.
"When are you going to tell me what that means?" asked the voice of Alyssa Kasen from the other end in response to Sonny's nickname.
"You mean, you give up?" said Sonny. "Alright, I'll tell you next time we see each other."
"Cool… So whatcha up to?" asked Alyssa.
"Well, there's a couple'a Mexican drug dealers down the Trenton Precinct probably trying to answer some pretty tough questions right now because of me, and Toni Cipriani apparently wants to see me t'morrow, so things are pretty hectic, I guess, replied Sonny. "How're things with you?"
There was a slight pause.
"Hello? Alyssa? Are you there?" exclaimed Sonny.
""Wha… sorry, Sonny," Alyssa responded. "I just caught my brother eavesdropping at the door."
"Which one?" enquired Sonny.
"Kenta, replied Alyssa. "Little pest, she added under her breath.
"I wouldn't know – youngest in the family, mused Sonny.
"So, um, what was that you were saying about something you were doing tomorrow?" asked Alyssa, trying to get the conversation back on track.
"Toni Cipriani," reiterated Sonny. "I've just been told he wants t' see me tomorrow at his Momma's restaurant. God knows what he wants though. Probably wants me t' go cause another traffic accident or some other bullshit, else he just wants me t' act as a delivery boy or something."
"So, you'll be busy tomorrow?" said Alyssa in a clearly disappointed voice.
"Maybe," replied Sonny. "Why, you going someplace tomorrow?"
"The Mall," sighed Alyssa. "I've been told we'll be having visitors from Kobe for a few days and that I must wear 'respectable' clothes while they're here, so I'll have to go to the Mall and get some."
"Sounds good," said Sonny, nodding to himself as he spoke. "I'll try and be there."
"Really?" said Alyssa.
"As long as this 'meeting' doesn't last all day, I'll be there," affirmed Sonny. "I promise."
"And then you'll tell me what 'Hermoso' means?" asked Alyssa.
"Yes, I'll tell you what 'Hermoso' means," laughed Sonny.
"Then I'll see you tomorrow, Koibito," responded Alyssa.
"Koibito? What the hell does that mean?" asked Sonny. "Oh, I get it… you don't tell me until I tell you what Hermoso means, right?"
"Right," replied Alyssa. "I'll see you tomorrow then."
"Tomorrow," repeated Sonny. "I'll see you tomorrow, 'Lyssa."
"Okay, Sonny," said Alyssa. "Love you."
"Love you too," said Sonny.
Putting the phone on his bedside table, Sonny took off his jacket and hung it up before getting ready for bed.
So, he began recapping. In the last seven days, I've caused a major accident that helped a bunch of Diablos escape Police custody, I've blown up an old warehouse in Atlantic Quays, I've hospitalised some Yardie pusher and tonight I got two Mexican guys from Los Santos or someplace busted with a case full of Cocaine. He collapsed onto his bed. And tomorrow, Toni Cipriani wants to see me about God knows what. On the bright side, I'll hopefully get to see Alyssa…
Sonny reached out and turned off his bedside light. Soon he was asleep, knowing that he probably needed as much sleep as he could. After all, no-one could ever accuse Sonny Sindacco of having a boring life…
This story is the first of the 'Life in…' series. The other two stories concern different characters in different places with all three taking place at the same time (2005).
Though I may make some references to it, I have not played Liberty City Stories, so some of the stuff I say about the Sindaccos or anything else that wasn't in the PS2 GTAs may (and probably will) contradict the PSP game.