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7: Tie You Up In My Basement

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"Always forgive your enemies - nothing annoys them so much" 

~ Anonymous

~**~~**~

Seven men were congregated around an oval table; their ages varied from middle-aged to ancient. When she had entered, most of the men stopped talking and rose in irritation.

There was a pause of confusion and then a hubbub of noise.

"You can't be in here."

"There's a meeting going on."

"Are you illiterate? Can't you read the sign?!"

"Who do you think you are?!"

Typical lawyers. Always ready for a fight.

She ignored their whining and scanned the room until her eyes settled on an older man.

He was the only one who hadn't risen in anger at her entrance.

Upon observing him, she concluded it was more of a physical ailment that prevented him from standing instead of a inner zen.

His hair was thinning and the bags under his watery eyes monopolized his whole face.

His jaundice skin gave a new definition to the word 'yellow' and looked transparent under the LED lights. V.C. approached and stuck out her arm in a handshake.

"Hello, you must be Mr. Jameson."

The gentleman answered with a hacking cough, "And just who are you, young lady?"

"Dr. V.C. Coldwater. Kingmaker Investigations. I assume you've heard of my company."

Once he had recognized her name, the lawyer blanched under his yellow skin and nodded vigorously. "Yes. Dr. Coldwater, of course. Please, I am so sorry for the inconvenience. This way, let's speak in my office."

He rose slowly, one hand bracing against the table. "Gentlemen, I apologize but I must postpone our meeting. Something important has come up."

Piece of cake.

It always helped to have a notorious name to throw around in circumstances such as this.

Turning around, he gripped a cane in a shaking hand and hobbled out of the room. V.C. followed after the man and let the door close behind her with a resounding thud, trapping the other men in a bubble of confusion.

~**~~**~

Mr. Clark Jameson had slowly led her to an upper office shrouded in its own glass walls.

He rounded a desk and took a seat with great trouble. He leaned his cane against the desk, a clunking sound filling the room as the heavy woods collided. Its engraved shaft was distinct, outlined with a silver paint that sparkled in the sunlight.

V.C. waited until he was seated and then sat opposite him.

She leaned back, propping her elbows on the chair armrests.

As the man settled, she took in the wall to wall bookcases, the prominently displayed awards, and even a practice foil hanging above his desk. The clock on the wall seemed to grow louder with every tick.

"Dr. Coldwater," The old man began, "It is a pleasure to have you here. I must admit, I was not expecting you to come at such short notice. But my door is always open for my clients."

"Potential client," V.C. amended, "I haven't decided which firm will represent Kingmaker's interests to the highest degree."

"Of course, of course. How forward of me. I apologize; wishful thinking on my part."

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