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Chapter 3: Scenes from a Family

Giovanni Gotti was a Sim of simple pleasures. He loved staying with his young wife's family in Monte Vista. He came from a large family and felt at home here; the city was beautiful and he had been able to continue building his career here, working amicably with his father in law Dante Costa, who was a very successful Bank Robber, and who had the whole town in the palm of his hand. Giovanni reluctantly had to admit that his own father had not been as successful, though he had been Emperor of Evil.

Giovanni loved to watch the stars. "The air here is so clear, I can see so much more than in cloudy Bridgeport or London. Never stopped raining in London anyhow."

A cuddle in Mama's pretty, old-fashioned kitchen was another pleasure.

"Darling, I have something to tell you."

Not quite what he was hoping to hear - she wanted to go to University and continue her Art studies. Giovanni wasn't sure he liked that idea. But she was very much younger than him, and he thought she might enjoy the experience, having led a pretty sheltered life. He dared not leave Monte Vista, now that he was getting established here. He insisted she stay in an all-female household at University.

"Mi amore, why would I look at those boys when I can come home to a MAN? I'll phone you every night and let you know how it's going."

Her father Dante was delighted that his eldest daughter had won a scholarship."You have your mother's brains, my dear. Do well, for the family name! And I don't want you to worry about money, all will be paid, just like in London."

Giovanni and Mama waved her off.

The University was pretty much as she had expected. Huge, busy. Students debating the relative merits of paintings.


"John Singer Sergent!"


"Madame X!"

"Kill you!"

Giovanni had insisted she selected the shortest and most intensive courses to complete her degree quickly. So it was all work.

But a very enjoyable form of work.

Later in the course, they were introduced to the works of the famous Banksy, and she decided street art was IT, the thing she wanted to, needed to do with her life.

She didn't really let herself relax at all till after the finals. Then she missed her graduation because she FINALLY had time for a long soak in a bubble bath, went shopping for two bags of tagging paints for her little sisters and a pile of recipes for her stepmother.

All too soon it was time to go home.

Of course, she was very soon arrested for tagging at the park.

"You can't arrest me!"

"I can and I am."

"Do you know who I am?"

"THIS is your house?"

"My father's house, yes. NOW do you believe me?"

"This is Dante Costa's house. Everyone knows him. My Commandant plays chess with him regularly. Oh dear."

She looked carefully at Tina's face. "You're the older daughter, by his first wife? The one who went off to London?"

Tina sighed. "Look, it's too hot. We will pay the fine, and have it cleaned off. Now leave me alone!"

"Oh. Oh. My apologies, senorita."

"Get outta here before I notice your namebadge."

Mama Giovanna decided it was time to calm her children down. On the advice of her priest, she encouraged her children to sit quietly and read their Bibles together in the evenings.

Continued also More of Monte Vista