Avery calls my into her office at the end of the day. When I get there she’s packing up her suitcase, shuffling papers and doing other busy person stuff as she gets ready to leave. She speaks when she hears me enter the room without looking up. I guess I’m not enough of a Lawson Brothers vet to garner her full attention. Still, I’m appreciative of the face time.

  “James, hi,” she says. I’m guessing her secretary told her my name.

  “Hullo Miss Yates,” I reply cordially. I don’t know where this chick draws her lines in the sandy beach of professionalism in the workplace, so I do my best to dot all my Is and cross all my Ts. I’m certainly not in any hurry to jeopardize my place in the firm. It’s been a long and treacherous road to get here and more than a few backs were stabbed in the process. It’s a dirty game.

  “The uh-“ she pauses momentarily, frozen in the animation cycle of placing a Tupperware lunchbox into the briefcase, then, like an android powering up, finds the words and continues the motion, “the NYL case, I want you to take it.”

  This woman has a strange method of constructing her sentences backwards.

  Wait. Rewind. She what? This is a big deal. This is a really big deal. It’s only the suit I’m standing in and the law degrees on the wall and the teak – all that teak – that reminds me where I am and catches me from spewing ‘for reals?’

  “Fo’ reals fo’ reals,” Avery replies. Shit. Guess I didn’t catch it after all. She says it with a smile though, and for the first time in the conversation she looks at me.


~ by Joseph Blame on October 19, 2010.

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