Mildred loved her son. He was born on her favorite day – Devil’s Night. He had sexy onyx eyes like the man at the bar she slept with the night of conception. He reeked of a piquant bouquet of stagnant water and antiseptic soap, with some hidden notes of anchovy.
Mildred named him Angelo. They ate grilled cheese & peanut butter sandwiches together in front of the TV. They raked each other over hot coals. They made up curse words to mutter behind their shared missalette during Sunday sermon.
When Angelo was just seven years old, Mildred received a very curious telegram. In this telegram, she was alerted of an opportunity to come into a very handsome sum of money. If only she would just relinquish custody of Angelo into the hands of the barren Duchess. Mildren considered this for a very long fifteen seconds.
Two weeks later, the Duchess’s security team arrived at Mildred’s door to claim Angelo. With a small satchel in his hand, Angelo looked up his mother with those two smoldering eyes of ink and growled, “You will pay for this, Mother.”
Mildred wrapped an arm around his side, quite loosely, before pushing him into the cage that was held open by two robust stuffed suits.
In the end, it wasn’t so much the money, but the promise of a lifetime of free stinky feta that swayed Mildred.
[Penguins sidenote: I figured, I’ve referenced Brooks Orpik in two stories so far, why not give him a shoutout in the actual painting this time. Fleury’s in there, too, haaay.]