Robbi Perna - Author and Lecturer
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Last installment - Once a Soldier

I hope everyone has enjoyed a lovely Palm Sunday with their friends and family.  I had a group of close friends over today for the Italian version of high tea.  Lots of food, fun, and conversation.  It was a wonderful day.

Here is the last installment of Marco's story.  If you feel inclined to purchase the rest of the story, please remember my author's proceeds benefit the Wound Warrior Project.  Help me support those wonderful men and women who have suffered serious injuries while protecting our freedoms.

* * * *
            “You really did it to yourself this time, didn’t you?  As I recall, the first time I met you, you were flat on your back...although, honesty compels me to admit that I put you there.”  Ay’ana whispered to the unconscious man as she recalled the incident.  She’d returned earlier than planned to the dorm room that she had shared with Guiliana.  When she opened the door, she saw an unknown man rise from the bed and come toward her.  Instinct had taken over and she went on the defensive.  Her knee caught him in the groin at the same time she jabbed her fist into his solar plexus.  She’d been mortified when he regained his male dignity and introduced himself.  He always told her he’d understood her reaction and forgiven her, but his behavior over the years didn’t seem to indicate that it was the case.  Marco called her “The African Queen” and appeared to tolerate her only because of her close relationship with his sister.  She retaliated by referring to him by his rank with “Mercenary” tacked on, a title to which his reaction was always the snarled response, “yeah, and a damn fine one.” 
            The beeping of the monitors dragged Ay’ana's thoughts of the past back to the present, but as close as she could tell, nothing on them indicated a problem.  Marco slept on oblivious to his surroundings.  Ay’ana sat down and reached over to grasp his limp hand where it rested on the bed.  Despite their ongoing animosity, she had deep feelings for Marco—so deep she hadn’t dared admit them to herself—or anyone else.  After all, what would someone like Marco, a well-educated, Italian Catholic devoted to his career and family, see in a bi-racial Jewess who owned a catering company?

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