Lucky Dog 1 translations 07 Bernardo route 02
Part 3 Daivan
At my sudden question, Bernardo runs his hair through his long hair.
|Bernardo: The heart of living as the Mafia? …You mean, living as a made man in Cosa Nostra?|
Oh? He’s seriously putting some thought into the question. Bernardo makes a show of massaging his scalp before opening his mouth.
|Bernardo: I think … it’s extending our protection to the regular folk… No, to our brethren as well. We protect the weak.|
|Gian: That seems like a pretty complicated answer.|
|Bernardo: I simplified it down for you, though? Well, perhaps it is a little too concise.|
Bernardo takes off his glasses and blows onto it, probably to shoo away some dirt specks or something.
|Bernardo: For example … you mentioned you were distant with your godparent?|
|Gian: Yeah. I think it’s some relative on my mom’s side, but I’m not really sure. After my parents died, I think I saw the person maybe once, but that’s about it.|
Usually, though, a godparent’s someone who watches over the kid in times of trouble, even though they’re not the kid’s real parents. I don’t really remember having any contact with mine.
|Bernardo: But you’ll also be in a position to receive requests from couples here and there soon. They’ll come to you with requests of ‘Please come to my child’s Baptism.’|
|Gian: Me a godfather, eh…|
Il padrino. Godfather. He’s the guardian for the whole of someone’s life, all the way from baptism to death. I hear it’s a tradition straight from our Italian roots.
When a normal person comes looking for a godfather for their kid, they’re, well, generally looking for Mafia protection.
We have the parents’ full cooperation – for the sake of themselves and their kids.
The kids grow up under the family’s wing, and as a result, a powerful bond’s formed and perpetuated…
…Well, at least, that’s how it is in theory. In reality … sigh…
|Bernardo: I’m already supervising six children. I see them every now and then, but they’re quite the cute little tykes. I look forward to their weddings.|
A godfather, mm… Me in a church, swathed in suit and baby in hand, standing perfectly unruffled with a tranquil grin… I try to imagine it but fail.
I’m really no good with suits.
|Gian: We gift the weak with their daily grain and guardianship … huh…|
I mutter this to myself and, perhaps because of the specific example he’d given, I think I have a better feel for the answer than before.
The more charismatic, the better care you take of your underlings, the more you’re beloved. The more you’re beloved, the more you earn. And the more you earn, the better care you can give to the ones around you.
I can feel it in my skin. It’s a continuous cycle the family’s kept going. I think this is what Bernardo’s getting at.
|Bernardo: The weak come seeking our protection, and it is precisely this that supports the family. We have to answer their pleas. It’s our duty.|
|Gian: Hmm. That’s pretty unexpected. Didn’t think you were the type.|
|Bernardo: It’s up to you whether you think it’s just pretty words or not. …But if you don’t have one pretty ideal like that, where’s the thrill in raking in the dough?|
I thought Bernardo just prioritized his loyalty and his family over everything, and that was all there was to him,
…so seeing him have a motive that isn’t simply “loyalty” is like a whole new angle of him.
|Bernardo: You treasure those around you – you treasure the men below you – more than you do yourself. After all, you yourself are under the protection of those above you.|
Meaning the captains are being protected by the Boss, too. …Bernardo really loves the Boss…
|Gian: Then the Boss at the tippity-top’s … just giving protection to everyone under him? All give and no take? Doesn’t the Boss get nothing from this then?|
|Bernardo: The Boss receives a different something else in return. That’s what I believe. I don’t think I can put it in just a few words, though.|
What’s this thing he can’t sum up “in a few words?” This “something else?”
Money? Power? Respect? Fear? Hm, what else could there be…?
A hand’s on my shoulder, shaking me back to reality.