Deep beneath the old stone church of San Marco dei Cavoti are catacombs where the bodies of the dead have been interred for centuries. But that is not the unusual part. Connected to the catacombs is a large circular chamber with an arched ceiling called the Chamber of the Brothers. Father Ambrosi, the church’s priest and the head of the “Order”, an ancient organization versed in the supernatural, is the overseer of the catacombs and of the chamber. The Brothers were monks who had, over the centuries, committed heinous crimes and had been given the choice to become monks of the Brotherhood to atone for those crimes or to be excommunicated and damned. Their mummified remains stand at the periphery of the chamber, while their souls are trapped in limbo, reliving their crimes for eternity until a new member of the Order takes “the Journey” to free them. Adelina Vittorio, the notorious daughter of the Don had stepped into the chamber, her mind and spirit having unwillingly taken “the Journey” into the past to share the mind of a criminal in the year 1944, to an Italy occupied by the Germans in World War II. It was not a physical journey, physical substance can not transcend time, but Adelina’s thoughts and spirit did. She came to the chamber with hatred in her heart, a hatred that has since grown. She seeks power, and with her knowledge of the past, she is in a position to gain that power.
Adelina is changing the future, her future, our present. These changes will grow more pronounced… Evil will grow… evil, oppresion, racism… If Adelina is not stopped there is a very real possibility that the Germans will prevail against the Russians and win World War II.
The German SS, in their obsession with the occult, have archaeological teams searching madly for artifacts of power; artifacts that can change the fate of the war… and the world.
Father Ambrosi needs Tony, also a member of the Order, to make the Journey into the past to stop Adelina from changing the course of history and plunging the world into a darkness deeper than it has ever known.
Targeted Age Group:: 13 and up
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
The Detective Capella books have been such a pleasure to write! After Daughter of the Don my readers were calling for more Adelia Vittorio and I was happy to oblige.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
They say life is stranger than fiction and it’s true. My relatives come from a region in Italy called “the Land of the Witches” where the people are said to be able to see the future as well as ghosts… Years of stories from the old country, passed down through the generations, has been great writing material.
The explosion had flipped her onto her back and had stripped off a good deal of skin. Adelina looked down at her exposed ribs. She’d seen them so many times as she’d relived this day that she’d become desensitized. She reached up slowly with her left hand, the one that still worked and pulled the Saint Christopher medal from her shirt, placing it prominently on her chest. She’d tried other “changes” in the seconds before her death, crawling, pleading, cursing… they had come to nothing. Adelina struggled to stay conscious, lay her head back on the street and waited. It wouldn’t be long.
She breathed in and out, each breath a struggle. She heard German voices approaching… A woman in a gray green uniform stepped up to Adelina, who thought, “Come on… Come on, see it!”
The woman stopped and knelt down on one knee. She reached for the necklace. Adelina smiled. She thought, “This has to work. And why wouldn’t it?”
When she had first found herself on a cobble stoned street in WW II Italy she had thought she was having a nightmare or a hallucination. After what seemed an eternity she had realized the truth and had decided to fight… to win.
With every ounce of energy she had remaining, Adelina reached up with her blood covered hand and grabbed the woman by the wrist. The woman started to pull away but Adelina had her in a death grip, literally. The woman pried at Adelina’s fingers, breaking her pointer at the knuckle. She turned her head from side to side looking for assistance. Adelina grew excited, though her heart could beat no faster… she could feel it happening. The woman looked into Adelina’s eyes and screamed, a long blood curdling scream. An SS soldier ran over, hobnailed boots loud on the street, and brought the butt of his rifle down once, twice… into the lifeless body. Adelina breathed in a full breath of air, a breath without pain, and pulled the fingers from her wrist. She turned to the SS soldier and said, “Danke. Diese Partisanen sind ermudend. (Thank you. These partisans are tiresome.)”
As the words left her lips, a voice in the back of her mind screamed out, the same scream Adelina had heard a moment ago. Adelina did what she had done before; she took control. The voice faded to an annoying buzz. Adelina thought, “I’m free! Free!”
She wanted to shout, to dance.
The soldier reached down and offered his hand. She took it and stood slowly, her knees weak. The amount of respect the soldier showed her meant that she must be a person of some importance. Looking at her shoulder, she saw the rank insignia of Detektiv Inspektorin, Weibliche Kriminalpolizei (Detective Inspector, Woman’s Criminal Investigation Division). Adelina thought, “A police woman, I can work with that.”
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