Giovanni is man who likes things simple—not too big, not too small, not at all raucous, like Mario, who prefers color and vehemence to each and every subject with a large flourish of his hands. Contrary to belief, he is not much of an organized person, but he knows where to find things when he wants things, and his tongue usually lays low, even in the voice of frustration or acerbic attacks from others. He molds his temper into one of mild tastes, one that does not snap or bend or break, one that chooses order over dissent, one that handles the curling of his fingers over his blade very well—there is a small sliver of pride within him that pulsates at the thought of mastering control as expertly as he does his stealth.

But, alas, there are always exceptions to the rule.

He prefers not to remember these memories of losing the reins, but they flood back to him at times—whether at the dinner table or in the presence of Il Magnifico, whether he had to fish Ezio out of trouble or rescue Federico from the father of an angry noblewoman, whether he closed his eyes or opened them in the bright light. The reveries seem to lightly laugh at him, tickling the hairs at the back of his head, usually pulling a sigh from his lips at the very thought of his brashness. He wants to forget them, to rub the unease away.

Yet, they are so clear.

The first time—si, the first time: He recalls it all too lucidly: He was young—his face determined, but still soft by the contours of youth and vitality, where the days and nights were fine wines, women, florins, more women, and more drinking, training for the Brotherhood, even more women, and saving himself from sad marriage attempts his father made. Giovanni Auditore da Firenze had been a name that was the epitome of infamy, and as a complacent teenager who slept in the beds of his lovers' more than his own, he embraced the epithets society branded him with. He may have been a fool, but he was the fool, and no one could have judged him when sagacity bled from his eyes.

Apparently, judicial matters fled his mind with blood on his lips.

Mario tells him that even beasts were nothing compared to his belligerence, patched up back at home, his entire body wrapped in linens as their mother nursed his wounds. He remembers the prideful tone his brother had while he spoke about his endeavor, to singlehandedly take on an entire horde of Templar lackeys who had set a trap that was originally meant for the Grand Master—there was too much blood covering his eyes, too much awareness, but they channeled through his fists in blind anger at the sight of his half-dead brother on the floor, a falchion embedded in his gut: It had gotten to the point where he did not remember when the last requiem finished.

But the acknowledgement in his father's eyes settled tranquility over the mayhem.

The second and third times were one with many branches, fused into a single chain of desperation and outrage—humorous, Maria calls it, but he begs to differ when she pulls the covers over her nakedness after the neighbors roar at them to cease the endless quaking in their bedroom. He amicably apologizes, glowering at them later on behind shut doors, and proceeds to make love to his wife once more, even harder, faster, more thrilling than the last, unable to believe that he could ever be sated. And he could still taste the succor as much as the dirty promises whispered into her ears: But one more demand for silence reverberates; thus, in the morning, he shoots out one of Ezio's soiled linens into the crowd outside and shakes the bed more than ever.

He ends up getting much more furious at the lascivious voyeur still looking up at his windows, though.

The fourth time was quite skewed, considering that the event happened every single day, whether the weather was outrageous or the streets were crowded with danger—except, of course, he had been a tad more than peeved that night, rushing home sans thought in order to see the birth of his youngest child. The shadows had been his companion, providing stealth and cover for the night as he leapt from roof to roof, dispatching guards and collecting the Pazzi flags in his path, the thin line of his mouth loosening a bit when he perceived the outline of his villa. He remembers a low coil of anticipation that rested at the back of his tongue.

Which was, as he mentioned, ruined by 'plebian niceties'.

Obviously, the problem with these bastardos was that they never went away, lest he bestowed a good punch to their faces and sent them crying for another mass of bored sentries. They had been everywhere at that time, right after he jumped down from the high platforms in order to make it back into his home, croaking out supposed love ballads as they strummed their lutes. Maestro, they called him, or even the Noble One, when all they clearly wanted was a good purse filled with florins so that it may sate their pretentious greed; and he could not attack them unless he wanted to increase his notoriety, which had skyrocketed that very day.

But he did, anyway.

And their reactions were very worth the price.

The fifth time?

Giovanni scoffs.

Was happening today.

At this moment.

"Ezio Auditore da Firenze—you are incarcerated, young man; go to your room, at once! Ora!"

"But padre—"

"And do not even think about using Federico or the windows."


"Dare you argue with me, boy?"

" … Come desideri."

Being a father must have surely been the fifth.