Author: Saumyaa Sinha
Smoke filled the little cellar. One couldn’t tell if the pungency was from the cigar tobacco or the wine or the rapidly rotting body of Louise Baer.
“This is ridiculous. It cannot possibly be expected from me to wait this long,” he mumbled under his breath, sitting on a chair so high it seemed he was nothing but a furniture talking.
“They are arriving shortly sir, if you could just be so kind as to-” the assistant began.
“I don’t believe in kindness, its blasphemy blinds us, and if it isn’t clear enough then perhaps there is no use in this pathetic wrangle, you understand?”
“Very well understood sir, maybe that’s why you’re here,”, a steady unwavering voice answered back, the lack of humor in it terrifying.
“Ah Miss Davis, kind of you to finally see through to your commitments,” he spat, as he swallowed the woman from the top of her smooth haired head to the glistening tip of her heel.
“You are, if I’m not wrong, sitting in my office, Mr. Smith, traveled 32 miles for my help on a petty case you have twisted for yourself, and you, fragile little man, have the audacity to run your mouth to an attorney with the power over 15 states. I’m not the one in the mess here, sir.” She smiled, walked over to her desk and sat on her chair, fingers entwined in front of her.
“Miss, you have me all wrong,” Mr. Smith smiles, the demeanor of his body changing. Women can be intimidating. Especially if they have a degree in law. “I did nothing. I need you to prove that”.
“That’s all pretty well, but tell me first, I beg, why did you kill him?”. She asked, simply skimming through some papers at her desk, not bothering to look at the man sat opposite to her. “The bench warrants did give me quite a headache this morning,”.
“This is preposterous!” Mr. Smith raged and got off his chair, slamming down his hand on the rosewood table.
“Now you be careful, that’s real wood,” she raised an eyebrow and that was enough for him to sit back down.
“I have come here to tell you Miss, that I have killed no one. I am a businessman not a murderer!”
“But Louise Baer WAS your rival”
“And you did threaten him not once, but on three different occasions”
“Miss, I agree but-”
“And if he were to die, his shares were to be automatically transferred to you?”
“That’s true, but-”
“And you plead innocence? Did you come here to waste my time, Sir?”
He sighed, slowly rubbing circles around his head with his fingers. This woman was maddening. He dropped his voice to a bare whisper. “I did not kill him. I don’t know who did it. But it wasn’t me,”.
“Hmm,” she said undeterred. “Mr. Smith, do you know what the state police department found during their investigation? A pipe. Much like yours. Here let me refill that for you,” and she bent over the table to grab the pipe out of the bewildered man’s mouth. “Porter!” she shouted and a skinny man, wearing a suit two sizes too big for him came running into the room, with his hands behind his back.
“Fill this up for the kind gentlemen here,” and she smiled at Porter, who rushed to do his job. “Now, where were we. Ah yes. The murder you didn’t commit,”
“Miss, I swear I did not-”
“I heard you know the Bostons?” she said, finally looking at the shaking man.
“Yes, yes, I met them briefly last year during the annual business meet. What has that got to do with me,”
“Oh it’s very much got to do with you, Sir. Did you know, if you were to break the contract or, well, god forbid, were to have been demised, all money under your name would transfer to him?” she questioned, plainly.
The man gulped. “Yes, I am aware,”. Porter rushed back in the room and handed the pipe to Mr. Smith, who hurriedly took it and had a couple of swigs instantly to calm his mind.
The attorney smiled. “If you were to be convicted Mr. Smith, you’d have a death penalty. And if I were to somehow reverse that into a better disposition, you’d still have lifetime imprisonment,”.
“I came here to seek your help. Please,” he begged.
“I am helping. You’re just too stubborn to see it. There is only so much I can do Sir,” she smiled again.
The man was frustrated. This woman didn’t believe him. She wasn’t going to take over his case. Lord help! He cried. “I’ll give you as much as you ask,” he pleaded.
“Oh, your money is something you don’t need to worry about Mr. Smith, I’ll just say two things to you now. First, here, this is my wedding card, do come,” she slid a crisp golden envelope towards him. He picked it up and the swirly golden writing frustrated him even more. How could she do this at such a time? “And second, it really will be quite painless, you won’t feel anything sir,” she smiled.
The woman undid her smooth bun and got off her leather chair.
“Miss, what on Earth are you talking about, I-” he choked on the tobacco. “I don’t underst-” Mr. Smith clutched onto his throat with both hands.
She sighs. “I must take your leave now Sir. My fiancé is waiting,” and with the finality, she walked out of the room. “Porter, take care of this mess,”.
The door closed with a thud. Mr. Smith brought the card close to his face, his pipe falling onto the carpeted floor.
You are invited to the harmonious wedding of
Gloria Davis and Charles Boston
Smoke filled the cabin. One couldn’t tell if the pungency was from the cigar tobacco or the burning carpet or the slowly rotting body of the dead man.