Trail of the Blue Rose – 3

 

Shadow Forces, The Crest of Paloma

“As soon as we arrived at the hotel I stationed my men around the outside and in strategic places inside the building so both the man and the woman in the lobby had already been spotted by the time Peter and the girls arrived.”

“I think the man was indeed waiting for Peter he had been sitting at the bar where he could see the entrance and as soon as their tram pulled up he made a phone call. The bartender said it lasted about 2 minutes but he didn’t hear any of it. Then he picked up his drink and moved to the Lobby.”

“A few minutes after everyone went upstairs the man hailed a cab and left, Andy followed him to St Germaine’s on Beacon St where he  was dropped off at the gates to the rectory and used a key to get in.”

“What about the woman and for that matter the  man on the ship?”

“The man on the ship was just some stringer for The Harold out to make a name for himself. He’d seen all of us on the Captain’s deck together and it peaked his curiousity why a monsignor of the Boston Diocese would be engaged in what seemed to be friendly conversation  with an alleged member of Organized Crime and two unknown young women. You girls just seemed to be an easy place to start. I persuaded him to go after a different story and paid him well to do it – who knows it might lead to a Pulister for him. As for the woman we don’t know. My men lost her when she hung up the phone and went into the Ladies Room.”

“But why would he have a sketch of Mother’s necklace on him?”

Seems he’s not only an aspiring writer but also a European History Buff and he had taken several roles of film already when we spotted him. While he was checking one of the roles he noticed the medallion. He said he remembered seeing something like it before and intended to research it when we landed, he had even telegraphed a discription of it to a friend over here which is why it was in his pocket when he attracted our attention. Mr Alexander is checking into it. Hopefully he’ll have something  when we meet with him.”

“In the meanwhile no one goes anywhere without an escort and do not answer any questions that could arouse curiousity.”

“Well he can’t be any more curious then I am. I’m not even sure I’m who I’m supposed to be and I never even heard of Dragon Nest or whatever it was or anyone named Lucianna Magdelina Paloma.”

“Well, yes, about that…..” Uncle Mike said. 

Offices of Alexander and Waterford; London, England

We arrived at the Barrister’s a few minutes before 9:00 Friday morning and were surprised to see the young photographer sitting in the waiting area. He looked rather nervous when he saw us walk in.

“Good Morning Mr Divitte. Lord Alexander will see you now and Mr Connor he’ll be with you in a few moments.”

We settled in our seats while Mr Alexander shuffled papers and spoke quietly to his Secretary.

“Alright shall we begin?”

“I should tell you Mrs Sarconi you are 1 of 5 women we have  found who match the general description and criteria for a possible claim  to Dragon Keep; 4 have already been disqualified and as of now only 1 other looks promising . May I see the necklace, and the additional verification Mr Divitte tells me you have available?”

“You’ll have to speak to Mike about the documentation Mr Alexander, until you called to ask if you could meet with my husband and I about a matter of importance I thought my necklace was just an old piece of costume jewelry and knew nothing at all about any kind of documentation.”

“I also think you should know I was raised by a couple who adopted me after my Mother was murdered when I was just an infant which I just learned the details of a few days ago and I know next to nothing about my family heritage.”

Mike carried on the conversation from there

“Alexzandria Volduchi  and her daughter Margaret moved into the boarding house my mother and I lived in when they arrived from the old country. At the time  we shared the top floor of the house on Old Delancy owned by the Widow Cohen, my best friend John Sarconi and his family lived downstairs on the second floor. John and I were alter boys together and are like brothers. When my mother passed I found out who my Father was and that he had been sending her money every month since she’d moved to Boston. She’d paid the bills and put the rest into a trust fund  with a lawyer named George Scigliano as Trustee to invest and handle until my 16th birthday; if I hadn’t run afoul of the law before then, in which event everything would go to the church.”

“I kept the apartment but spent most of my time with John and his family, and somewhere along the line our twosome became a threesome when little Maggie became our constant shadow. To make a long story short John and I took Maggie under our wing and tried to protect her even after she went to work in the garment district, by the time she married her boss on the promise he’d pay for her mother’s sanitorium bills I was in love with her.”

“A week before my 16th birthday I received a letter from Mr Scigliano asking me to come by his offices. Since I’d made my bed with Organized Crime years before though I had managed to stay of the hands of the law I felt it only fair to pay my dues and by the time I left his office the church owned half of everything in my portfolio. The house on Delancy as well as the rest of the block belonged to my new partner and I. Mr Scigliano of course was kept as my personal attorney. When I found out that Maggie’s mother had been removed from the place she’d  lived and stuck in some hell hole of a nursing home I visited her and had her moved to Sacred Heart Convalesant – that’s when she told me about the box buried under the floor board in the basement of the old house.”

“I dug it up and took it to Mr Scigliano and never set eyes on it again until Kathleen married John, That was also when I set up the trust funds.”

“I received a call from Mr Scigliano about an inquiry and some photos of a woman that could have been Mrs Sarconi’s sister from some Attorney in London regarding an Alexzandria Paloma who had possibly used the name Volduchi or Donavon and may have had a child. They had eventually tracked her to the boarding house my partner and I owned. He wanted to know what I wanted to do with the things he held in trust for Mrs Sarconi since we both knew what was in that box and you know the rest.”

“Here is the box you can examine the contents if you’d like  but the originals will not leave my possession and my attorney also retains certified copies of everything as does The  Archdiocese and both are well compensated for  their discretion and loyalty.”

“I understand. Miss Jameson, you may send Mr Connor in now.”

“Hello Mr Connor, nice to see you again. Your friend’s research has proven successful I hope.”

“I think you will be pleased with what he came up with in the short time he had, Sir. Mrs Sarconi,  Miss Sarconi, I am pleased to actually meet you  – or should I say My Ladies  if your papers are as authentic as your amulet seems to be. He also said to tell you he would welcome the chance to autenticate it if you’d agree to let him see them – in your precense – of course. Here are  his conclusions and his card.”

“This might interest you Mr Alexander. According to Dr Keller it’s a rendering of The Paloma Family Shield – minus the stones; it looks authenic.”

“These papers are also interesting. The older letters bare what looks to be the Seal of Dragon Keep and the letters sound authentic. Mr Connor do you  think your friend or yourself could  compare the names in these papers with the family geneology or have you already booked  passage back to New York?” Mr Alexander asked.

“No Sir, I haven’t yet made arrangements for my travel, but since I am commisioned by Mr Divitte to investigate and expose any mud I can find on a certain wealthy and politically prominent New York Family I must first speak with him on this matter.”

“As to my friend I cannot answer for him but I’m having dinner with him this evening and will talk to him or you can call him yourself. Either way I’ll have an answer for you tomorrow.”

“Now if you’ll excuse me I have another appointment.”

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