My parents stopped fighting when I turned sixteen. It’s not like they started getting along; they just stopped fighting. They were polite and civil, like business acquaintances who mildly disliked each other but understood decorum would help get them through the day. Over the next two years I would, through observation, their occasional comments, and remarks of friends and family members, piece together most of what happened; I would not learn all the details until the events described in this story.
On the evening before my sixteenth birthday Mom and Dad were set to look at a car they were considering buying for me. Dad was going to bring a mechanic friend. Dad did not show. He said he was detained at the office.
Dad was a vice-president of Citizen’s Bank. His boss was Beverly D’Angelo. Ms. D’Angelo, you always called her Ms. D’Angelo, was formidable. She was fifteen years Dad’s senior, looked and dressed like a battleship, and, as far as I could discern, had no sense of humor. She was the bank’s owner, chairperson, and president. She’d built Citizen’s from scratch and its eight branches prospered in Cobb County, Georgia, despite competition from an array of national banks.