"Don't worry about Marcia, she goes out a lot and I always know where she is. I have my spies you know!" Tony added menacingly, giving nothing specific away.
Nonetheless, Tony decided that if they were to continue this strategy it would be best that they didn't do any more in his house. They would meet weekly, on a different weekday, at a different hotel, in a different part of London, which he would arrange. It would be somewhere out of the way, just in case anyone casually dropped by and spotted Livia's car there. Personalised number and pink. Sheesh!
She then reasoned with Tony that to be sure, they would need to do it again the following week and the week after, then by the fourth week, she would know if she’d had her period that the process must start again. Tony was on the hook.
One issue Livia was concerned about though was that at any moment Marcia might burst in.
However, Tony was relaxed about that. He always knew exactly where Marcia was, because, unbeknownst to her, he had a phone-tracking app on his phone telling him her location. A smart move for a gang boss.
There was no time like the present for Livia. She was certain that getting over this initial hurdle would get the deed done. Tony would then have committed adultery with his brother’s wife, and would accordingly be well committed.
So Livia worked skilfully on Tony with the required result. Pulling him down onto the couch, she continued to do all the work, in a more mechanical way than she'd planned, until Tony emptied himself. At this point she made a point of keeping his 'gift' where he'd deposited it, using a tissue. And she made sure he got the point.
"For starters, couldn’t we at least find a bed to lie on?” asked Livia.
“Couch OK for you Mrs Monelli?” was Tony's concession.
“OK then, let's give it a go, but a bed would be so much better.” she conceded.
"This ain't no hoochy-coochy-smoochy stuff you know!" Tony was keeping his distance while having embraced the concept. "This is business!"
Livia couldn't resist saying "But it still doesn't have to be ouchy-couchy either!"
Tony's look prompted her to zip her mouth for a while. No more smart-Alice... now straight down to business, or indeed the couch.
Cold and mechanical Tony wanted it, but Livia wasn’t settling for that. Her way would be different, and Tony’s plans of being uninvolved were not what she wanted. And what she wanted she usually got.
"It has a better chance of working if you’re not tense."
“Who’s tense? I’m not!”
“Well I am! Can't we do things a bit slower?"
“And what’s your slow way?”
“Well, just like you want me to warm you up a bit...”
“You mean getting my cock stiff?”
“Well yes, since you put it so nicely! But I need a bit of warming up too."
You don't get to be and stay the boss by being indecisive. Tony Monelli certainly wasn't that. Instinctive in his reactions he was equally instinctive in his actions and the decisions prompting them.
Livia had convinced him that the two of them having sex was doing the right thing by Terry. 'No time like the present', thought Tony, 'unless...'
"Not on the blob are you?" he demanded, crudely and directly.
"Last week." Livia replied coldly.
Then he unbuckled his belt, unzipped and dropped his trousers and underpants.
"Get your kit off and get this thing standing up!"
Talk about mechanical!
At last, Tony had grasped exactly what Livia was suggesting and what she had skilfully reasoned, without somehow getting the violent response that Tony could so easily have provided, given his unbreakable bond with his brother.
Livia had presented the almost altruistic proposal, and in so doing had presented herself as the faithful loving wife, albeit faithful in spirit. She had entirely justified the imperative of both her and Tony keeping completely schtum... again without challenging the fidelity of either one of their relationships with Terry.
It had sunk in. Livia had been masterly, although she would be the mistress.
"And nobody gets to know except you and me?"
"Cos you wouldn't dare tell no-one would you?" Tony added with open menace.
"Absolutely not... no way! Look Tony, this is not about getting any dirty, cheap thrills. It can be purely mechanical, but, you know what, I'm absolutely sure this is the most effective way of getting me pregnant with Terry and your DNA." Livia deliberately put Terry's name first to keep the focus on what's in it for him.
"So Terry gets another kid.... and just whats in it for me then?"
"You'll always know it's yours!"
"I'm not gonna do the dirty on my brother you bitch!" Tony suddenly scared Livia, who half expected him to hit her. But he didn't.
"I'm not suggesting you do Tony, I am suggesting you help him the best way you can. It's just that the best way to help him is not to let him know he's being helped ain't it? He's so sensitive... you should know!"
"Let... me... get... this...straight," said Tony very deliberately, "I screw you and you get banged up, Terry never gets to know and the kid will have the same DNA as Terry."
"One way?" questioned Tony, "So what's another way?"
"You could talk to the doctor about sperm donation, which would of course be to me. The only thing bothering me, which might bother you Tony, is that if the word got out I was being artificially fertilised, and that sort of thing sometimes gets out, Terry would be absolutely devastated and that's something I don't want to happen. It might be risky. Would you want that?"
Tony's only answer to Livia's rhetorical question was no.
"The other way would be more natural. Draught not bottled, if you know what I mean!"
Then Livia's natural cunning, intelligence and her own instincts really kicked in.
"I love Terry to bits. I want another kid, he wants another kid. We both want it really bad... but it's not happening, and unfortunately we know why!"
"OK... so?" Tony, still a bit aggressive in tone, seemed now prepared to listen to reason and what she had in mind without blowing his top.
"So you might be the only one who can help him..."
"OK, I think I geddit," Tony interrupted, not wanting to appear as a total idiot. "I could donate my spunk?"
"That's one way!"
"I don't do guessing games!" snarled Tony, "You tell me what that means!"
"Look," she replied, "Hear me out. You and Terry are inseparable, almost joined at the hip, except you ain't. He has a problem now in the babymaking department and I'm guessing you don't... well there's no reason why you should."
By this point, Tony was completely disengaged from Livia, and not just because she didn't seem to need any more comforting, but also because he was starting to feel uncomfortable prickles on his neck.
"You're still not making any sense." he accused, "What exactly are you suggesting?"
Tony's response to Livia's ironic observation was "Yeah, life's a bitch ain't it?"
"Well this bitch reckons it doesn't have to be!" was her reply, adding, cryptically "Not if you don't want it to."
"Meaning?" asked Tony suspiciously, slightly disengaging from his comforting embrace.
"Meaning both of us could get what we need without anyone getting hurt or needing to know."
"Explain!" said Tony, with a slight touch of menace "I don't get your drift."
"Well let me put it like this," said Livia, matter-of-factly. "You and Terry have the same DNA, you're identical. Guess what that means!"
Livia was aware that Tony and Marcia were not getting on well at all, mainly because Marcia wasn't getting pregnant either and had no intention of doing so. Livia was strongly attracted to Tony. After all, he looked just like her husband Terry... but boss Tony had more balls.
However, they were identical twins and Tony had always demonstrated extreme loyalty to his twin, possibly insurmountable. Subtlety and reasoning to be exercised if she had any serious designs on Tony.
Livia chose to comment, casually, how ironic it was that what was missing in both their lives was the same.
Livia was a nasty piece of work. Terry had married a beauty, but under the depth of her skin existed a cunning, manipulative creature who used everything and trick at her disposal to get what she wanted.
One day she created an opportunity to confide casually to Tony her fears that Terry might have become infertile, or, dare she say it, impotent... or maybe he’d just lost interest in her. She broke down weeping when she explained further how desperate she was to have more children with Terry.
Tony, who had never really liked Livia, comforted her nonetheless.
Livia made out to Terry, Tony, Marcia and anyone else who would listen that she was desperate for more children. She let it be known, casually, telling people discreetly, one at a time, as befits a secret, that Terry was responsible for the lack of fertility. Given Terry's character, this amplified the problem.
Terry still adored Livia, but sex between them became a relatively rare occurrence. Accusations and the continuing elephant in the room of infertility simply put him off sex.
But Terry had already proved his masculinity, via Luka. Maybe time to prove it again, some other way. Maybe.
Terry's marriage is not so smooth either. Livia decided she definitely wasn't having any more kids and, unbeknownst to Terry, she arranged her own contraception.
Livia liked sex, lots of it, but not the result of that sex, except for Luka who, despite being very difficult, remained the apple of her eye. Consistent with his Catholic upbringing, Terry wanted to have more children. Livia's failure to get pregnant again, when it would be appropriate and he had the money to support her and the children, made things a bit tense between them.
To add insult to injury, Livia blamed Terry.
The 'business' side goes from strength to strength. Although Tony’s the undisputed boss, this is never openly articulated; it's set up as having joint leaders. Tony always looks out for Terry’s back and there is critical mass in having the two of them. Nobody in the gang is ever completely sure, and so as a leadership, it's double-strength.
Homelife for the twins is slightly different. For Tony, Marcia is proving quite a difficult woman. She finds fault, firstly with Livia, then Terry and then Luka, who is a spoilt little shit.
Not smart when married to a gang boss.
In Catholic Italian families, even those who have grown up outside Italy, procreation in general and succession issues in particular are big things with the menfolk. Women’s roles are simple… sex, running a good home and producing and raising kids... and preferably boys. The men attend to the business and the womenfolk are expected to attend to the needs of the men, whatsoever they may be. An historic role, albeit completely blown apart by modern generations of women.
But it was a role frozen in time in the Monelli households. The honour and standing of the family depended upon it.
For a couple of years Tony, Terry, Livia and baby Luka lived in a pretty shitty dump in the East End of London, with regular, if uncomfortable, visits from Marcia. When she was there, the atmosphere was brittle, so as soon as possible, Marcia and Tony found somewhere else. Despite the fact that there was no love lost between the two women, and each twin's questionable attitude to his brother's girl, they all got married at a joint ceremony with what was then their band of criminals as witnesses.
Both twins married, separate homes, thriving 'business', it all bode well.