King of Diamonds
By Michelle Burgin
Cover Art by Landon Edwards
Copyright 2012 Michelle Burgin
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Al worked hard so his wife didn’t have to. He kept her in state at that house on Milan. They’d moved away from the “blighted” part of the planet, the city he knew from childhood. But she’d been right that New Messina was no place to raise kids. They had two. Chiara was six and her brother was four. His wife wanted another. He hadn’t wanted any. And he paid for it all.
He felt like slapping himself. That was a shitty attitude to have about his family. It wasn’t like Joan had tricked him. And he knew she worked hard taking care of those kids and the house. She took care of everything while he was gone, which was most of the time. And if he dug deep enough he knew he loved his kids.
But he couldn’t evade the feeling that for all this trouble, he’d rather be free. His buddies called him the mission hog. He’d overheard himself called the mission whore. It amounted to the same. He took any mission he could get his hands on, because he needed the money. There was the mortgage and the debts and his wife’s extravagant standards. If he complained about the bills, she’d cry. Then he felt like real shit.