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10 April 2006 @ 10:31 pm
PrisonBreak FanFiction: Ascension  
Author: HalfshellVenus
Category: John Abruzzi (Genfic)
Rating: PG-13
Summary: Abruzzi’s POV. Success calls to success: the makings of an Underworld enforcer.
Author’s Notes: Written for philosophy_20, where I claimed Prison Break, the General Series. This is for prompt #3, “Ends Justify The Means.” Also for the pbreak_drabbles “Memory” challenge.

x-x-x-x-x

They were powerful men, all of them. Sometimes ordinary to look at, but marked by that difference of knowing that they could force their will, that they could bring a threat home when it was necessary.

This was his birthright—-his destiny. He would start small, little jobs for big men, and someday he would take his place at the table.

John witnessed his first killing when he was fifteen. It was on one of the Saturdays when he was the go-fer for Family meetings at his uncle’s textile factory. He would listen in on the gathering as he went in and out of the room, picking up stray words and piecing together a fabric of tradition. The discussion got louder that day, became heated, and John returned with a tray full of sandwiches just as Zeppo Pantoni got a bullet through the eyes and arced over in his chair ten feet in front of him. The tray crashed to the floor, food and napkins scattered on the cement before the seeping pool of red, and John bolted into the bathroom to vomit.

His uncle found him there, patted him on the shoulder as he rinsed his mouth in the sink. “It’s business,” Uncle Gianni said. “You can’t have people speaking out against the agreements— it breaks down the order. You’ll see. Keeping everyone on the same track with no slip-ups—that’s how you get the job done. One weak member can take down the whole group.”

By the time John went in to clean up the sandwiches, Zeppo was gone. A towel had been draped across the blood temporarily, and John was sent to get lunch from the corner deli. Order had been restored. The ripple in the flow was gone, and everything moved forward just as before.

Years later, when John carried out his own version of Order, he had taken those lessons to heart. As he forced a dock foreman to his knees, he entertained the notion that a death-sentence for an unintended mistake was an awfully harsh punishment. But this was the way things were done. Doubts and uncertainty opened the door to chaos, and there was a larger picture to uphold that was bigger than the life of this one man.

John barely flinched as he pulled the trigger, and he forced a bottle of chianti down on top of the lump in his stomach afterward.

It would get better, and so would he. This was for The Family, for the business. It was for years and years of a system he had been selected and groomed to uphold.

He was not there to ask questions, or to invent new schemes of his own.

He was a thread in the tapestry of tradition. It was his job to complete the picture-- not to break the loom that wove it.


-------- fin --------



 
 
 
Ferryn - you know, that weird chick: Abruzziferrynheit on April 11th, 2006 06:10 am (UTC)
This is good. I really, really like it.

I think we need a bigger glimpse into Abruzzi's past. I guess the upside to not getting that means fiction can be written about it.

You've thought it out so well, the feelings he might have his first time. A mistake is made, so the family decides this guy needs to be taken out because he's a weak link. But just for a slip-up? I like the thought process, as he learns that it's for the best, for their own protection and success. (That kind of rhymed.)

And I'm a sucker for metaphors, so I loved the end. And I also adore the first paragraph and the third to last. I love the wording. It's written well.

It's always good to see fic being written about Abruzzi. Doesn't happen enough.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Casthalfshellvenus on April 11th, 2006 04:21 pm (UTC)
A mistake is made, so the family decides this guy needs to be taken out because he's a weak link. But just for a slip-up? I like the thought process, as he learns that it's for the best, for their own protection and success.
It's horrifying to a normal person to think about how easily someone can become ingrained with the callousness to be ruthless-- over both large and small offenses. And how easily it can be justified-- especially if you're surrounded by the mentality.

And I'm a sucker for metaphors, so I loved the end. And I also adore the first paragraph and the third to last. I love the wording. It's written well.
Let's hope those came off well, instead of overdone. It seems to me that once you stop examining your piece in the larger picture is when you become most able to do morally wrong or questionable things. And yet, he saw the lesson so early on of what happens to people who DO ask questions...

It's always good to see fic being written about Abruzzi. Doesn't happen enough.
He's tough-- I think he's the toughest character on the show to write. It might be the moving target of his accent/dialect or what-have-you. But I think a large part of it is, as Michael put it, he's a "mercurial" man. He's like Tony Soprano in that regard-- he can as easily be generous and merciful as short-fused-deadly. And you never know which it's going to be.
Becbecisvolatile on April 11th, 2006 06:46 am (UTC)
So few people deal with Abruzzi, so I totally love you for this. A nice little glimpse into a man who is an old school criminal, with a code, albeit an illegal code.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Casthalfshellvenus on April 11th, 2006 04:22 pm (UTC)
So few people deal with Abruzzi, so I totally love you for this.
I've been trying to get a handle on him for months. He's really hard for me to fully grasp, for some reason.

A nice little glimpse into a man who is an old school criminal, with a code, albeit an illegal code.
It's the code he learned-- and it's basic and vicious all at once. All he can do is leave, be killed... or carry it out.
The Good, The Bad and The Lana: brother hugthelana on April 11th, 2006 08:31 am (UTC)
Much love. You finally found your Abruzzi voice!!

I'm always shocked that not more people write them. From General Hospital to The Godfather to The Sopranos, so much (even if misguided or wrong) romanticism is attributed to mobsters, I'm surprised that not more people try to delve into that with Abruzzi.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB  Brothers-- moody eyeshalfshellvenus on April 11th, 2006 04:25 pm (UTC)
Much love. You finally found your Abruzzi voice!!
*Cough* Let's hope so. :0

so much (even if misguided or wrong) romanticism is attributed to mobsters, I'm surprised that not more people try to delve into that with Abruzzi.
I tell you, the amount of effort that goes in to gleaning from those sources without _repeating_ them is considerable. How do you make him (and the people he learned from) be typical Mafiosos without having it feel like everyone is a Don Corleone or Tony Soprano repeat?

Did you say "General Hospital"? What is the world coming to! ;)
dragon9maiden on April 11th, 2006 06:44 pm (UTC)
Very accurate POV for Abruzzi. He is just the type of man you described. It makes sense for him to learn his ropes the hard way from his family business.
Love all of your other POVs too.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Casthalfshellvenus on April 11th, 2006 07:05 pm (UTC)
It makes sense for him to learn his ropes the hard way from his family business.
Strange to say, but sometimes witnessing horror again and again is how you break someone down (instead of make them rebel). You can't always be sure what result you'll get, but you'll likely force one or the other.

Love all of your other POVs too.
Thank you! I have been waiting months to write Abruzzi. I could almost do Bellick easier (and I'm tempted, I must say). :D
Are we back to hos over bros?lissa_bear on April 11th, 2006 11:41 pm (UTC)
Ah, perfect! This seems really fitting! And I love this line: John barely flinched as he pulled the trigger, and he forced a bottle of chianti down on top of the lump in his stomach afterward.


Also, love the Abruzzi back-story!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: kissMichaelhalfshellvenus on April 11th, 2006 11:46 pm (UTC)
John barely flinched as he pulled the trigger, and he forced a bottle of chianti down on top of the lump in his stomach afterward.
He's part of the way to being cold-hearted, but a trace of his humanity still remains. But not for long.

Also, love the Abruzzi back-story!
:D These are kind words from the only one of us who can consistently write Abruzzi with any success. ;)
tyrical: AP_aJolietyrical on April 14th, 2006 04:01 am (UTC)
This take on John is interesting.

I must think on this and I think my brain might be a bit fried right now but this brings about other possibilities on John and also why he factored so heavily in Michael's planes.

:goes to bed to ponder:
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: PB Casthalfshellvenus on April 17th, 2006 04:27 am (UTC)
but this brings about other possibilities on John and also why he factored so heavily in Michael's planes.
I think you hit a Freudian plans/planes vortex there. ;)

But bad puns aside... are you perhaps thinking that Abruzzi's function could also be that of the guy who will get his hands dirty? Saving Michael from having to go there at all, and Lincoln from sinking back into it or overstepping any line that kept him from committing worse crimes?
alazysod on May 7th, 2006 01:19 am (UTC)
I really enjoyed this. It's nice to see writing that dips into Abruzzi's mind––he's written so rarely in fanfiction, and we don't get enormous backstory for him on the show––and it was well done. The last line is beautiful.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: JSquaredLovehalfshellvenus on May 7th, 2006 02:12 am (UTC)
he's written so rarely in fanfiction,
He is so hard to get a grasp on. Other than lissa_bear's pieces, and "The Oriental" that princess_doe unfortunately did not finish, Abruzzi is scarce. I wonder if part of it is Stormare's accent. I hear everything from German to Louisianna to gangster in there, depending on a given line. Which does not help!

The last line is beautiful.
Thank you! I had a theme for a change, and a chance to square it off. :)