I shook his hand and as I touched him, a vision swam in front of my eyes: an older version of Enzo in sunglasses sat behind a desk. On the wall behind the desk was a yellow shield with a rearing black horse on it. There was also a shelf groaning with trophies and laurels; this man was going to be very successful. I tottered slightly.
“Are you alright, my lady?” Enzo asked.
I smiled. “Yes, perfectly. I missed breakfast, that is all,” I explained.
“Please, come with me and we will soon put that right,” he said. He led me to a small cafe and ordered coffee and pastries. Soon he began to tell me all about his plans for the future. “I hope to have my own racing team. I want to build my own cars and engines, like that garagista Charles Chapman, and I want Ferrari to be the best, the most successful, motor racing team ever. The colour red will forever be associated with my team,” Enzo said. He was breathless, but his eyes were shining.
This is a man who loves his sport with a passion. Like Charles Chapman, Enzo didn’t seem to be interested in money, he wanted the prestige associated with the engineering of the cars. I made up my mind there: I was going to invest in Enzo Ferrari’s dream of his racing team. With his passion and my vision, I’d be a fool not to. I stood up.
“Thank you, Signor Ferrari, I can see you are passionate about motorsport and I wish you every success. Do you have a card so I can contact you when I have made my decision?” I said. He handed one over and kissed me on both cheeks, in the Italian way. Then I made my way over to Daniel.
“That looked cosy,” he remarked.
“That was Pietro’s friend Enzo, the one who was looking for investors in his racing team,” I replied.
“And?” he asked.
“I know I said I was looking to invest in a racing team as a cover for this investigation, but I’m seriously considering investing in Enzo’s team.” I explained about the vision I’d seen. “If I were you, I’d think about investing in his team too, it’s a very good long-term investment. If what I’ve seen is going to come true, current shares are not the way forward. Investments in small future enterprises are the way forward,” I replied. Daniel nodded.
“I’ll certainly look into it,” he replied.
“What about you? Any clues?” I asked. Daniel shook his head.
“No, I think we’re in the wrong place. Nelumbo, Cheetah and the big teams aren’t here, it seems to be just Italian drivers and teams,” he replied.
“What about Johnny?” I asked.
“I don’t think he’s here, no-one’s seen him,” he said.
“And the drugs and the Mafia?” I asked.
Daniel sighed, “Not really our concern. If one of the teams is smuggling drugs, it’s up to the police,” he replied. I nodded. It was stupid to think we’d solve this so quickly.
“Maybe Nell has had better luck,” I said.
We met up with Nell in a small cafe. She had plenty of gossip and tips, but nothing relevant. She confirmed Cheetah and Nelumbo weren’t here and that it seemed to be almost exclusively Italian drivers. She said there were lots of amphetamines here, but that wasn’t surprising. It was the drug of choice for racing drivers in the long distance and endurance events like Le Mans, but no cocaine.
The sound of an argument stopped our conversation. Outside the cafe several men stood in a crowd pushing and shoving each other.
“The man in the suit is saying that he, the man in the cap, has no business here, this is not his turf, for the want of a better word,” Daniel translated.
“The Mafia and the ‘Newcomers’?” I asked. Daniel shrugged.
“Possibly, but would the newcomers really be so stupid as to challenge the Mafia in their own backyard?” he replied.
“If they think they have the Mafia on the run in the rest of Europe, they may think it’s an ideal time to take over. From what I heard in Nice, they’ve already taken over the drug trade in Monte Carlo,” said Nell.
Suddenly a shot rang out. People screamed and ran for cover in shops and cafes. Into the small market square strode a well-dressed man flanked by two bodyguards.
“Uh-oh, this isn’t good. He looks like the representative of the local Mafia,” Daniel replied.