Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta lawyer. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta lawyer. Mostrar todas las entradas

lunes, 10 de julio de 2017

Inside the storm

   The weather outside the terminal was terrible. The storm had been brewing for quite a while and it had finally unleashed itself unto the city in the ground. It had been going on for about three hours and, according to experts, rain could continue to fall for a very long time. It was not possible to know how many hours or even days that would be as the system had become the storm of nightmares and something like that was not going to go away in a couple of seconds.

 The airport had been packed earlier but, as night came, people were sent back to their homes or hotels, in the hope they could resume their journey the following day. That was not going to be possible but the hope for something better is always present in most people. They do incredible things because of that hope and that means they can be capable of some beautiful things but also of horrendous acts. It’s just the way humanity works and it will keep working like that forever.

 A perfect example of that would be Patricia King. She found herself in the bathroom the moment her airline announced, via speakers, that all their flights had been grounded and cancelled as the storm was impossible to get through. You probably don’t know this, but Mrs. King was a very determined individual. Not only she had become the top executive in her law firm in record time, she was well known among her colleagues for nailing every single case that landed in her office.

 Patricia King was hated and loved and both feelings were felt especially strong inside of the law firm she worked so hard in. She was applauded when applause was required but that did not mean everyone liked her, least of all Robert Frost. Frost had been her nemesis from the first moment she had entered the office tower in downtown where the firm was located. He had been the star of that place for many years, had built the image of the firm himself and saw King as a threat to everything he had done for himself and others.

 This was fast overheard by the woman, as she had learned from a young age to be alert for any kind of dissidence in the group she was in. She had been like that in college and in high school. Her classmates respected her but always knew when and what to talk about when she was around. That explained why, despite being so well regarded, she didn’t really have any friends. She lived alone and had never been in a romantic relationship with any man or woman. She wasn’t interested in “wasting her time”, as she had once phrased it to her own mother.

 However, Mrs. King cannot and should not be portrayed as a monster, a “power hungry bitch”, if you will. As a woman working in a man’s world, Patricia knew that she had to work twice as hard to get somewhere in life. And that’s exactly what she did: she started working at a very young age, earning money and saving it for the future. Her parents were very surprised when, at the age of sixteen, she was able to pay for her own new car, not requiring their help for any of it.

 She paid her way through college exactly the same way, grabbing most of the money saved from many summer jobs in her youth in order to get herself the best private education money could buy. As she was so focused on her goals, she achieved them all very easily; at least that’s what it seemed from an observer’s point of view. After all, Patricia always had a winning smile on her face and there was never a moment when she didn’t seem to know her next move.

 However, this was all a deception. She was a human being, flawed and imperfect. She had not been born special in any way and had to build herself to be who she wanted to become in the future. That’s why, realizing this in her early years of adolescence, she decided to stay focused and never drive off the road she had perfectly designed for her life. She knew she wanted to be well known but for helping people and being a lawyer was the perfect way to do so. She was decided.

 As she washed her face in the airport bathroom, after hearing the announcement of the cancellation of the flights, Patricia realized that, for the first time ever, she had no idea what to do next. Her plan had been to get back to her city, where she would give two lecture in different locations on the same day and then, she would sign the papers to buy herself a brand new office, finally a real space only to herself where she could give life to her very own law firm.

 She had been thinking about it for a very long time and finally the moment was perfect: she was beloved by the people that needed to love her and there were the exact amount of favors owed to her that she needed to make her dreams come true, at least the most urgent dreams. It was all-perfect but for every single thing to work, she needed to be in the city the next day. The storm had formed out of nowhere because she was always checking weather conditions and many other factors that may cause disruptions in her business. She planned it all.

 But, as life goes, not everything can be predicted. The world is ever changing, always throwing curve balls at existence, to see if something would change, from time to time. Patricia went back to the check-in counters and complained but the staff was leaving because the airport had been closed. Every single flight had been grounded. In a second, she realized she could pay for a private pilot to take her to the required destination. So, in the middle of the storm and with her only small suitcase, she left the terminal.

 Luckily, the last shuttle bus was right where it should be and it took her in only five minutes to the general aviation terminal. She was hoping to fin everything operating as normal but, of course, the terminal there was closed too. Drenched, she walked around, trying to think of something. Patricia then spotted a security guard and tried to bribe him in order for him to let her walk into the tarmac, where she would hopefully find an available pilot. But the man had no use for money. Big mistake.

 This is where everything went bad. Or maybe it should be said that it went worse, because this was not the first time Patricia had done something like that. As said before, people do bad and good things depending on the moment and Mrs. King was the type of person that was always two plays into the game. She had bribed before, she had used her looks to get evidence for cases and had even had sexual relations with men and women in order to get what she wanted, whatever it was.

 Patricia King was not the jewel everyone thought she was. There was something, however, that people could feel when they were around her. And it was that rotten piece of her soul, corrupted by greed, that made everyone think twice about being a little bit too close to her. Instinct had made great things for her but it had also being something very good for the people around her, as it warned them that Patricia was to be respected because of the danger she represented to herself and others.

 So she grabbed the guard’s gun and shot him, point blank. Her hands were covered in water and so was the gun. The thunders covered the noise. She managed to get to the tarmac and, what do you know, there was a pilot available, originally waiting for a wealthy client.


 One hour later, Patricia landed in her city. She was a bit dizzy and nauseated but ready for the big day that was awaiting her. This may serve as a remainder that we are all capable of horrible things. The thing is, we do not all cave to our deepest, darkest passions.

miércoles, 12 de agosto de 2015

The Beast

   When the man also known as The Beast was caught, everyone was relieved. He had escaped every single police force along his path, as he killed innocent people, and he had finally committed was small mistake. The police had noticed his liking for a certain candy and it was a wrapper they found at a gas station that lead them directly to him. He was found torturing his latest victim on marsh. Fortunately, she was still alive. He had to be shot several times in the legs and spine in order to immobilize him. The police remembered that they couldn’t kill him, no matter how much they wanted revenge for what he had done before. He had killed several people, not only women but children and men too. Besides, the way he did it earned him the nickname Beast from every force chasing him.

 Finally in a prison cell, doctor that checked him upon arrival were surprised to see that the damage done by the bullets to his body was minimal. He could still walk and had only a slight limp on his left leg. He was transferred to a maximum-security prison that same day, where he was able to wait for his trial. This offended many of the victims’ families, because they didn’t thought such an animal had the right to a trial. But the law was the law and he was at least entitled to tell the people how he had done it and why. The trial, after all, was also useful as a way to explain everything that had happened and shed a light on such a monstrous behavior. If it ever happened again, authorities and society needed to know why.

 For everyone, it was a very hard time. The pictures, the police videos, the details by coroners… It was awful to hear how every body was dumped, how some of them were raped and how he tortured every single one of them. He had no real proceeding; it wasn’t like he just raped the women or something like that. He was erratic and that was proven by the first two weeks of the trial. People had asked for only a week to show evidence and so on but the judge had to change that as he had to cut short every day, because at least one person would get physically sick of all the details of the murders. He knew it was asking too much of every single person to sit there and stand such truths.

 At least five of the jurors had to be excused. They all decided to leave the trial as they realized they weren’t fit to stand all those gruesome details that they knew had to come out to the light. They were replaced as they left, and some information had to be repeated for the new jurors in order for them to understand the whole process. That week was the most difficult time in the lives of the family member, more than the moment when they had been notified that their loved ones were dead. Everything hurt up to that point and most of them just wanted it all to finish with the dead of the Beast, they needed to see how his body stopped breathing.

 The second week of the trial it was all about the Beast. Bringing him to the courthouse proved difficult, as demonstrators were always there throwing things at him. The authorities didn’t really mind but they just couldn’t allow something worst to happen. It was rumored that some of the family members were planning to kill the Beast and that had to be stopped. The police started bringing him through the back door of the courthouse and they also made a couple of arrests to make people understand that they needed to trust justice and what it stood for. It was understandable that they were angry, very angry for what happened but they had to let justice do what she needs to do. They needed closure and that couldn’t be found by killing a human being. They shouldn’t become him to prove their love.

 The first couple of days, he was cooperating so much. But by the third day, he started speaking, saying incoherent things. After the opposing lawyer confronted him, the man attempted to attack him and had to be restrained and tied to the chair he was sitting on. The lawyer asked for the trial not be cancelled for this incident and he used this event to demonstrate to the people why the murderer was called the Beast. He then read a psychiatrist’s report, where he stated that the Beast suffered a very rare syndrome were his brain thought everything and everyone was a danger to his existence. It was the only explanation they could give to killing so many people. But why torture them, they asked? No response.

 The next day, it was a very long one. Again, pictures and videos of crime scenes were shown but this time in order to provoke a reaction of the Beast. His lawyer, who was trying to get him life instead of the death penalty, had not spoken much with his own client because he had become very quiet and still. He had to go through all the evidence to, at least, prove the man he was defending was insane and that he belonged to an asylum. He repeated this over and over again during the trial, without little to no positive response from the jury. They were all disgusted by what they had seen and had no space in their hearts or their heads to consider the Beast as only a crazy guy that happens to kill people.

 By the end of the week, they finally got some words out of the Beast. He said that he had to kill them all because he was afraid. But when asked if he had any reasons to torture any of them, he was quiet for a while. By the end of the session, he stood up and said that he fought against the forces of the devil and that it had been God himself who had told him what to do and how to do it. This was a low blow for everyone in the courtroom and for everyone in the city, to be honest. Blaming God was ridiculous but it was a step towards that insanity plea and it was hard to fight it because his time on the trials ended just after that.

 The following days a couple of family members gave their statements. It was, again, a difficult thing to see and hear. Most of the people in the room cried at some point and how not too, when the details of someone’s death were being given by their wives, husbands, mothers, fathers… The jury was thankful that those statements only lasted for a couple of days. After that, the judge gave the jury four days to decide about this man’s faith. Of course, they didn’t need so much time. The following day every single person had being summoned to hear the verdict: the Beast was going to die by lethal injection. Many of the families were relieved but none of them were happy or anything close to that. They just needed to close that door in their lives, once and for all.

 The execution was programmed a month after the trial had ended. Some people complained that it should have been done faster, but they couldn’t get everyone that needed to be there at an earlier date. The governor wanted to be there, as well as at least one member from every family that the Beast had destroyed. They even looked for his parents or relatives and found and old woman that denied the invitation to see a family member die. She said he had not seen him in years and that he had always been “one of those weird kids”. Television crews stationed themselves very early the day of the executions, as well as many people that supported the families. Strangely enough, there were also protesters against the death penalty. Not their best showing.

 The lethal injection process was very simple and some people complained, again, that it was too humane for such an animal. But the state had no other way of killing inmates. Firing squads were a thing of the past, there were no electric chairs anymore and communities had successfully avoided the implementation of death by gas. So everyone gathered in very small room and just watched as the man they hated so much was brought from his cell. As they saw the people from prison tie him down, many thought that the last ting their loved ones had seen was probably the face of that man. And that made them so much angrier.


 The liquids that went into his body were lowered slowly, one by one. As they saw him closing his eyes and his vital signs going away, they felt their hearts even more broke than before because it was the end of the road and they had gone through all of it together. They pronounced him dead and the governor started to applause but soon stopped. Everyone else looked at him with disgust. Somehow, people were still disgusted by the fact that people had to be killed to teach a lesson, a lesson that maybe no one was really hearing or understanding. Somewhere in the region, another person was being killed. Because the evil inside humans doesn’t stop and it has many layers and faces. The only way is to keep fighting.

sábado, 27 de diciembre de 2014

Over the lights

The young guy was there, just looking through the window, sitting on the edge of the frame. He was looking somewhere beyond the buildings, the streets, the people and their noise. It seemed he was looking at something that wasn't there or he maybe even not really looking, just wondering.

 - Sorry. - I said.

I put the papers I had been asked to look for on the desk. The boy immediately turned around and looked directly into my eyes. For lack of a better word, they were mesmerizing: not blue or green or honey colored. They were brown but somehow they were so much more special than any other brown eyes I had ever seen.

He smiled at me and turned his head again, returning to his wondering beyond this place, in which he obviously had no intention to stay. For me, it wasn't clear why he was there but my boss was handling his affairs. He was his attorney and I was the attorney's assistant. Not having come out of law school yet, I was trying to learn what made a lawyer a very good one but as of yet, i had only learned how to make a decent cup of coffee and how to juggle two boxes of donuts and three large lattes.

Then, my boss entered. Ms. Hoffman was a tall, intimidating woman. And to be honest, I was surprised to see her advising such a young guy. He had to be younger than me, I thought. But there he was, all worried. And her, she was in one weird mood. Normally, Ms. Hoffman would be yelling at everyone, asking for things, denying others and then asking for notes and data and so on. But today, she had been in her office all day until he came. And here she was.

 - How have you been, Tony?

So, he's name was Tony. He sat down next to year with me on the other side. They chatted amicably for a while, asking the same superficial things one asks a friend or a close acquaintance. This was extremely strange, as Ms. Hoffman had never really shown interest in any person, not employee or client. But there she was, asking him about his health and work.

For what I could take from the conversation, she had helped him emancipate himself from his family. The guy owned a billion dollar company. You know, one of those young brains of the new generation: they make an app and the next day they are giving money to Bill Gates or something.

He was not a friend of words, speaking only if he had to and not bothering to fake a smile, a thing that Ms. Hoffman was doing. It seemed so odd and unnatural. And, when the meeting passed its first thirty minutes, I started wondering what I was doing there. Besides handling papers from time to time, I was not doing much. She hadn't asked for coffee or some difficult number from ten years ago. She had just demanded me to be there.

Then the meeting was over. They were bidding farewell to each other when Ms Hoffman said:

 - Oh, I almost forgot. This is the guy I told you about. He's perfect for you.

At first, I was not sure I had heard it correctly. I tried to say something but then he looked at me again and all the words melted quickly. He just nodded and said "He'll do fine". Was I been pimped or something similar? Why hadn't she told me anything?

He came out first and she started walking after him but then I recovered my words and asked her what was going on. She only said that now I worked for him and that I should go after him and ask all the details about the new job. She said I could clear my post on the weekend.

So I stood there, for what it felt like ages. I had been laid off but at the same time I had a new job already. Confusing? Of course, but mysterious even more. I rushed after the guy and realized he had taken the elevator already so I had to go into a crowded one. When I finally arrived to the ground floor, I rushed out only to see the young man smirking, waiting leaning on a black car.

 - Get in, guy.

He got in and then I followed. It wasn't a limousine or anything but the car was beautiful inside and out and the chauffeur didn't spoke a word. Apparently, he knew the schedule by heart. He started to drive and then I noticed the young guy was looking at me.

 - Name?

For a second I doubted but then I finally spoke.

 - Ellar Ramsay.
 - Good. Call me Tony.

I nodded. Then shut up again. I had no idea what to ask or say. As a matter of fact, I didn't even know why I had entered a car without saying something before or asking the destination. I just sat there, looking through the window. If he really was my new boss, he would ask something at some time. Maybe lattes were also his thing.

The car stopped in front of a beautiful building. He asked the chauffeur to park it properly and come back the following day. The man only nodded in response.

When we got, Tony walked in front of me at all times. I just smiled or nodded to people in the building until we were alone in the elevator, taking us up to the thirtieth floor.

 - Did Ellen tell you anything about your job with me?

I nodded negatively.

 - Are you afraid of me?

That was one tough question. Although short and seeming fairly simple, Tony did have something very intimidating about him. His body language, his expressions, that way of looking at nothing, his eyes, ... He was really strange, even more than Ms. Hoffman. At least she was predicable. From this young fellow, no one knew what had to be expected and I suspected he was aware of this feeling he imprinted in people's mind.

 - I see you are. Good but not in your post.

The elevator opened and he stepped out. I followed, but stopped almost immediately: we were obviously at his apartment and it was really nice. It didn't look like one of those rich people's flats; all done by some crazy designer that thinks black is the only color in the world. No, this was a home, full of color and, obviously, feelings.

There were pictures, a lot of them. I saw Tony in some of them. And a man and a woman, probably his parents. I followed him through the living room and then to a corridor. I was sure he was leading me to an office where we would discuss the details of my new post but, once again, I was mistaken. We were in the bedroom.

It was lit by the pale light of sundown and when he switched the lights on, it felt as if the afternoon sun had entered the room. It looked beautiful. So beautiful it was, I had not realized he was taking his clothes off. Again, my words were lost. I saw his shoes, pants, t-shirt and jacket fall to the floor.

 - Pick that up for me, please.

He entered another room, probably the closet, and started singing. I couldn't decipher, or care about, which song it was. I took the clothes and folded them and then put them on his bed. What was I doing? Why was I just doing what he wanted instead of demanding answers or simply leaving?

I then realized I was breathing heavily so I decided to get closer to the window and try to slow myself down, to relax, to get my words back from him. As I calmed down, I saw the city unfold before my eyes, all the car lights and building lit up, all ready for the night. I remembered it was Friday night and I was being expected in a bar.

 - How do I look?

I turned to him and saw he had put on a tuxedo. He looked very sharp, except for the light blue socks he was wearing and his unshaved appearance. I felt him taking over me again but this time, I closed my eyes and spoke.

 - What am I doing in here?

He smiled and got close. For some reason, I shivered. I was scared.

 - Don't be scared. I'm not a maniac or anything. I get a bit crazy often but not really mental.
 - Do I really work for you?
 - Yes, you do.
 - As.... what? A prostitute? I don't...

Again, he smiled but this time I didn't felt threatened but relieved.

 - I do, actually. But that has nothing to do with it. I asked Ellen for a sharp, intelligent guy to be my       assistant. That's you.

What? Assistant? Again?!

 - I know you are her assistant. Or used to be, at least. Now, you are mine anyway. And I need you.

And then he did something I didn't saw coming. He took my hands and squeezed them gently.

 - I need someone I can trust. Someone that knows all of me and me of him. And no, not a                      relationship based on love or sex but on partnership. I own a small empire and I need a guy like you    to help me make it bigger and better.

So many thoughts were rushing into my head. I could even feel the blood going all over my body. I had to speak now but, again, all inside of me was blocked. My head lay low, at the floor. This time, I wasn't blocked because of him but because of the chance given by him to me. I had always wanted to be a lawyer, a great hero defending people from titans trying to steal their lives from them. But this man was asking me to be his shadow, forever probably. And just like that, without any explanation or details.

I raised my head again and looked at him, straight in the eye. When I saw him, I felt a connection. And I was sure I saw him feeling it too.

 - What do you need me for? - I said.
 - Grab me some dark socks and help me shave. I swear it gets better down the road.

Again, he smiled at me with that craftiness, that subtle way he had to get what he wanted by just using his eyes.

The only difference this time was that, without hesitation, I smiled back.