The Beginning of An Era

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Signs of fall's arrival had begun to spread around the village. Most of its inhabitants had started to bundle up and kept inside as much as possible, which meant that the constant sound of  footsteps on the main street had begun to diminish. Mariella Lucian and Joanna Crecco, two sides of the same coin, lay on the grass together after a long day's work. Both spoke of their morning as they gazed into the infinite sea above them. The friendship they had formed was of a beautiful sort. They had both been raised in completely different families who despised each other, it would only have been natural to hate each other.

Eyes still pointed at the sky, Joanna spoke, "My papa's newest project was just delayed again."

Mariella's head shifted towards Joanna, her soft features shifting to an expression of confusion,

"What? That's the third time they've done this! Why now?"

"Apparently they don't have the funds since the everyone refuses to pay for it. He's still trying though, he really wants to fix up the town square." Joanna sat up and turned to Mariella, "Do you think it'll ever go through?"

"I-I'm not quite sure," she sighed, "It seems that a lot of people seem to see your parents as beggars and frauds, like my parents. Nobody believes in the arts, your parents really do seem to be trying though. I do hope the project succeeds," she glanced at the clock tower next to them, "Listen, I'm sorry to leave like this but I've got to get home before my parents do, I'll meet you in town tomorrow."

Both girls waved to each other as Mariella rushed home. After hurrying down a few blocks, she jumped up the stairs to her front door. After catching her breath for a few seconds she stepped inside, only to hear her parents raving in the lounge. They weren't supposed to be home yet, with a confused expression on her face she leaned in, still hiding behind a small wall in the entry way.

"It's incredibly maddening, they've never worked a day in their lives, have they? Every single project, always trying to 'fundraise' aren't they? I want them out of our streets, our homes. What even is the point of those renovations, everything is perfectly fine at it is!" her mother said in a breathy voice.

"Horrible people aren't they? Trying to milk our money for their stupid hobbies and the mayor actually supports them! Ridiculous..." her father growled, his angular face turning into an expression of disgust.

Mariella knew exactly who her parents were talking about. Joanna's family had always been a vocal supporters of the arts, hers were quite the opposite. The Crecco's asking for literally anything seemed to stir real hatred in them. It wasn't as if her parents couldn't afford to help the Creccos now and then. The Lucians were one of the wealthiest families in town, a fact they never let her forget.

"You know we need to do something, and soon?" the woman spoke, walking to the other side of the room, turning her head towards her husband Matteo.

With a single look, a pact had been made between the two to do something drastic which they believed would truly rid them of the pest that was her friends' family. They whispered for another few minutes deciding exactly what they were to do, not knowing their daughter, whom they wouldn't have trusted with this information, listened in. Mariella wanted to speak up, wanted to convince her parents otherwise, after all, their plans were to lynch the Crecco's. She couldn't let her friend suffer for something her own parents did. She knew what she should have done and yet, she stood in silence, not even uttering a word. Why couldn't she bring herself to say anything?

It was too late for now, maybe tomorrow she could bring up the subject with them. She told herself she was just being loyal to her family but deep down some part of her knew that her silence came from fear of the consequences this might bring,

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