Don't miss all of Daughter, First: In part 1, we meet the Governor's daughter, Katie Mahoney Brown; in part 2, the attorney who's going to take down the administration digs into the family secrets; in part 3, the matriarch, Rosemary Mahoney, uncovers her husband's dirty business deals; and in part 4, Katie's marriage begins to unravel.
Dia wasn’t surprised when her phone buzzed with a text from her best friend, Njeri: I saw the news …
By then, everyone in Boston had seen the news. Fourteen members of MS-13 had been arrested in Chelsea, and there was her colleague Whittier on every channel. We seized 30 pounds of heroin, over $300,000 in cash, and we have sixteen assault rifles now in our possession. Though I can’t say any more at this juncture, we expect to add first-degree-murder charges. This is a win for our city, our future.
Whittier craved the flashbulbs. How many times had he forwarded Dia that Seth Meyers Boston-crime-movie parody? You gotta see this, D. Wife says he and I could be twins. And, of course, MS-13 was an ideal opponent. Whittier’s white teeth sparkled. “Our goal is to stop that cancer that is MS-13 before it metastasizes.” It seemed like the man’s stockpile of metaphors was akin to his budget for dental veneers — infinite.
Dia leaned back in her chair and rubbed her eyes. It was nearly 6 p.m., and she’d been in here for close to twelve hours, bouncing between her own investigation into the Mahoney administration and the news about Whittier. She closed the window on her browser. Enough.
Her office phone rang.
“This is Dia,” she said, longing for the modern wonders of technology, caller ID.
It was her boss, Henry. “Don’t worry,” he said. “In a couple of days, this little shit’ll be yesterday’s news. That’ll be you up there.”
She sighed. “Great. Can I send a proxy?”
Henry chuckled. “’Fraid not, kiddo. What I can tell you is that our circus will definitely be a helluva a lot more exciting than this one.”
After the call, Dia leaned back in her chair and felt queasy. Even if he wouldn’t admit it, Henry knew as well as she did: Big Jim wasn’t MS-13. What would happen next wouldn’t be a circus; it would be more like a funeral. She thought of those T-shirts they started making when the Red Sox became the Yankees, when Tom Brady became our Lord, Jesus Christ: “Boston vs. Everybody.”
Not everyone likes change, but people in Boston share a particular loathing for anything different, any shift in what they perceive as the natural order of things. Even the locals whose parents had been victimized by decades of Big Jim’s slumlord shenanigans would lament his demise.
Whether you loved Big Jim or hated him, there would be townie pride in knowing the man, having watched his rise and fall and followed his family in the gossip columns. Slideshows of the Mahoneys in different stages of growth would crop up all over the place. You’d see Katie escorting Orla from school — That poor, beautiful woman, imagine them coming for your daughter like that. Big Jim would be referred to as a “complicated figure … a family man.” After all, he wasn’t Whitey Bulger. He wasn’t the Boston Strangler or — God forbid — Bill Buckner.
There was power in being a part of a family unit. Dia remembered being a kid, watching Family Feud, counting the players on each team, realizing that hers would be so small: just Dia and her parents. They were only three. Maybe she was so hell-bent on taking down the Mahoneys because they were such a unit, so fortified by their own numbers. Also, if she was being honest, because it still hurt to think about freshman year, running into Katie before Thanksgiving break, both handing in papers before the deadline.