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Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/2114149
by John S
Rated: E · Short Story · Satire · #2114149
Jerry is the first lawyer in history to tell the truth. It doesn't work out well for him.
Jerry set up the appointment for 3PM. Most days he liked to be out of the office by then, but he would be glad to make an exception for his old friend, Henry. The two had grown up together all those many years ago. They had taken different avenues to success. Henry entered the world of finance after college and Jerry had become a criminal defense lawyer. They stayed in touch over the years with an occasional phone call or more recently by e-mail. Jerry had been somewhat surprised by Henry’s phone call asking him for a 3PM appointment.
The two old friends exchanged pleasantries as they spoke across the attorney’s large mahogany desk. “So let’s get down to business,” Henry said.
“Sure, what can I do for you Henry? You haven’t committed any felonies, have you?” Jerry knew his friend would never jaywalk, never mind commit a real crime.
“No, not yet, but I might in the near future.”
“C’mon Henry. What the hell is going on?”
“Is all this confidential, you’re not going to go to the police with what I tell you?”
He reached into his desk drawer and came out with a single sheet of paper. He handed the paper to Henry and said, “If you sign this I’ll be your legal representative and anything you tell me will be strictly between us.”
Henry gave the paper a cursory glance and signed it. “Ok, where should I begin?”
“At the beginning, I need to know everything.”
“Well first of all I have been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. At best, I have six months to live.”
Jery was visually shaken and it took several seconds for him to respond., “I’m so sorry to hear that Henry.”
“I was too. I was hoping for a nice long retirement after all my years of toil. It wasn’t meant to be. The diagnosis does give me a certain amount of freedom though. I can do almost anything I want without any consequence. What are they going to do, kill me?”
“Is that why you’re here? Have you done something criminal already? I can’t believe it, I know you’ve lived a good full life. Why would you want to throw all that away?”
“No I haven’t done anything yet. My life has been good. There have been certain things that people have done to me that I might want retribution for.”
“What do you mean by retribution? You’re too old to go beating people up. As you know lawsuits can go on for years. What exactly are you looking for?”
“So, my good friend how long have you been doing it?”
Jerry looked confused, “Been doing what?”
“Let’s not play games here. You know exactly what I’m talking about.”
“No I don’t. I have no idea.”
“Then I’ll spell it out for you, how long have you been sleeping with my wife?”
The attorney did a double take, “I’m sorry Henry, but I never met your wife. I understood that she died a few years ago.”
Henry produced a large caliber revolver and pointed it between his friend’s eyes. “If you admit it I won’t shoot you.”
Jerry was sweating and squirming in his seat, “But Henry I’m telling the truth. I swear I never even met the woman.”
“One last chance friend, tell me the truth.”
“I told you the truth. We need to get you to the hospital, Henry.”
The lawyer made a move to get up and Henry pulled the trigger, hitting his friend right between the eyes. Hearing the shot, Jerry’s receptionist rushed into the office. She saw her boss with his bleeding head slumped over his desk and his friend sitting there calmly with a gun in his hand. He told her that he wouldn’t have killed him if he had told the truth. She left the building and called the police.
When Detective Ryan arrived the office door was open and he saw a middle-aged man sitting at the desk opposite the victim. The man had placed the revolver on the desk and was taken into custody without incident. Ryan asked the receptionist if she knew what happened, she told him she’d heard the lawyer’s friend accuse him of sleeping with the man’s wife. Her boss denied it and then she heard a shot. The man told her if Jerry had admitted the truth he wouldn’t have shot him. Ryan interviewed Henry at the station and asked him why he had shot his friend, Jerry. Henry told the detective that the lawyer was sleeping with his wife. The veteran cop wasn’t about to waste any sympathy for a lawyer, especially one who had slept with a friend’s wife.
After checking records Ryan found that Henry’s wife had died years ago. He called a doctor he knew and explained Henry’s diagnosis to him. The doctor informed him that in Henry’s condition he was probably hallucinating when he shot the lawyer.
The detective hung up on the doctor and told his partner. “the victim was the first lawyer in history to ever tell the truth, and look what it got him.”

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Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/2114149