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Second Shot - 50. Chapter 50: Epilogue

Yes this is rather anticlimactic, but since I have not begun to write the short story yet, this is the best place to post this teaser if you will. It's short so won't be a long read.

Martin adjusted the blue and purple tie his wife selected to go with is 'best' grey trial suit. Satisfied it was straight, he unconsciously fixed the cufflinks that didn't need attention. The studs were a Christmas gift from his girls, no doubt bought by their mother, though she swore they selected this set. A hint of azure in the silver squares always forced a smile. It was why he wore them during important cases.

Opening statement, pretrial issues, expert testimony, all seemed to swarm forward at once. Typical of how he was day of trial.

"Martin, you're pacing."

He hadn't heard his detective come in. "You know how it is, Joshua, this is my pre-game."

"Relax, Mary has it organized."

She really did. If he was successful next year and was elected District Attorney, he was promoting her to his First Assistant. Not that she wasn't a fine trial lawyer, but she was the best attorney in the office for getting things organized. Tabs, file folders, triplicate or more of everything in their case file; nothing escaped her notice.

They were a great team, he to stand up and entertain the jury, tell the story in a way they would buy, she to be at the ready with anything he needed. No, she deserved better, she deserved a chance to be the star. Next big case, he'd ask if she wanted to take the lead.

Nodding to the detective, he collected his coat. "Yes, she is something."

Detective Belle grabbed the condensed files Martin carried home and kept in his office. Mary kept the main files, 'so he didn't mess them up,' she told him.

"I can take those, Joshua."

Snatching the files back, Belle shook his head. "Haven't you seen Law and Order enough to know the detective has to carry the D.A.'s things?"

A small, dramatic sigh escaped his lips. "I'm nothing like Jack McCoy. I like to think I'm better looking."

Belle laughed, but kept the file. "More modest too. C'mon. Peter and Jason are waiting for us outside the courtroom."

Martin nodded, fixing his cuffs again. They were both a strength and a weakness for him. As witnesses, they were strong. They presented well, were polite, affable, articulate. But they were a gay couple. How would the jury view that? Not that they lived in a county of bigots, but this wasn't San Francisco either.

"You're cufflinks are fine, Martin." Joshua's voice broke his concentration.

"Pre-game." He smiled. "Gift from the twins. They're my good luck charms."

"Charms?" Belle squinted, tilting his head to the right. "You believe in luck?"

"Anything that helps, I'll take. But this case won't require luck, just good execution."

Martin held the door open for the Detective before getting on the semi crowded elevator. Had he paid better attention, they would have walked; it was only one flight down. The doors slid shut, and he shrugged it off. Too late now.

When the doors opened, he wasn't prepared for the chaos he met. Reporters, officers, family members, friends, all milled before the locked doors of the main courtroom. The Chief Judge gave up the main courtroom to accommodate the expected number of spectators. Seeing the crowd, Martin couldn't suppress a smile.

"Why the grin?" Belle cut down a side hallway.

"Mary arranged with the court to have the first two rows behind us set aside for the Gregory and Henry/Tellerman families." Something he would have never remembered.

Ducking into a side entrance, the scene inside was only slightly less hectic. Even on 'big' trial days, the bustle wasn't this bad. Extra deputies, an additional bailiff, space set aside for reporters. He noted the space behind the defense table was blocked off, no doubt for the Colmars to sit front and center behind their darling child.

Colmar's defense team was already setting up, looking unhappy at the activity at his side. Not only was Mary laying out files, she had three well-dressed 'assistants' checking on exhibits and photo boards.

"How'd you manage to get Daniel Hember and his associates to work for us?" Joshua whispered. "They've always been the defense counsel of choice for the well-to-do."

Martin smiled, no, more like smirked at the sneers his opponents gave him. "Perhaps so, but when Raymond Henry walks into your firm, plunks down a retainer and says he wants them to represent his grandson and his boyfriend, Hember does what any private lawyer does; he accepts the easy money."

Belle put down the file and nodded to Mary. "Not following you, Marty."

Martin held up a finger, before turning to the oldest of the three attorneys surrounding Mary.

"Dan, nice to see you." He shook hands with the man he'd only ever faced as an adversary. The charcoal grey suit his 'assistant' wore was easy worth more than any three suits Martin owned. "Thanks for taking care of the exhibits for us. Not that I need to ask, but everything set with the experts?"

Nodding, not one of his gray hairs looked out of place. The broad smile he flashed showed he appreciated the irony of the situation. "Other than trying to explain to them that I was hiring them in my capacity as special assistant district attorney, no problems at all."

"Excellent. Dan, you know Joshua Belle, the lead detective on this case?"

The older man rolled his eyes, before shaking hands with the officer. "Sadly, this man has made my life rather difficult in the past. Nice to be working with him for a change."

"Please." Martin spared a glance at Colmar's defense team. "It hasn't been that long since you were the U.S. Attorney around here."

Daniel chuckled. "Long enough. To answer your question, Detective, Raymond Henry is a valued client of my firm. When Jason became a main witness in this case, he hired our firm to represent his grandson."

Shaking his head, Belle said, "But Tellerman isn't on trial."

"No, he isn't, but Mr. Henry thought it best for someone skilled in criminal law to be sure he was prepared for what might happen on the stand. As I understand it, Jason asked his grandfather to include Mr. Gregory in the retainer agreement."

"Okay, I get that, but how does his hiring you to be sure the boys are prepared make you a special assistant district attorney?"

"That was Mr. Henry's suggestion," Mary said. "He felt they would be more helpful if they used his resources to help our trial preparation."

Belle whistled softly. "Really?"

"Who do you think paid for all the experts and for Dan's time preparing them to testify?" Martin grinned at the notion. Not only did Raymond Henry foot the bill for expensive expert witnesses to help with the case, he hired Daniel Hember and two associates, and donated their time to the county to work on the case. "His deep pockets helped us keep up with the Colmar's well heeled defense team."

"Although it was odd writing oppositions to defense motions, I dusted off a couple of your replies, Martin, for my associates to use as templates."

Martin shook his head. "You're enjoying this, aren't you?"

"Immensely." Daniel gave Mary a wink. "It's the best of both worlds. I get paid my currently hourly rate AND I get to be on the good guy's side again. Who wouldn't jump at the chance?"

"It didn't hurt your firm's bottom line either, I bet."

The soft laugh was all the answer Martin needed. "No, it did not."

The next fifteen minutes merged into one long thought. Between Mary and Hember's two associates, he went over the witness list, exhibits for each witness, the location of all relevant files, and a dozen other little things he couldn't remember.

A deputy ushered in Peter's mother and sister, along with Jason's parents and grandparents. They all smiled politely, greeting one another, before moving on. Raymond and Daniels exchanged some joke that Martin couldn't hear.

When Mary took a seat behind him, Martin felt a bit guilty she was displaced by Daniel Hember, who was acting as co-trial counsel, not Mary. But if it bothered her, she gave no outward sign, busying herself checking their papers and telling the two junior associates what to do.

The Colmars were also given special access, and Jordan's parents and sister were accompanied by his two grandmothers and his maternal grandfather. Jordan, dressed in a navy suit with a white shirt and pale blue tie, shuffled in after his family, accompanied by his lead attorney.

The interview tape, conversations with Jason and Peter, as well as their other investigation spoke of the arrogant, smug, spoiled brat who glared at him across the table. When his attorney followed his eyes, he quickly warned Jordan to not engage the government.

"Arrogant little prick," Daniel whispered to Martin. "His father's an asshole, just like his son. When this is over, I suspect you'll be getting another gift from Raymond Henry."

Martin raised an eyebrow, leaning closer. "What's that about?"

"Seems Jordan's mother made herself a bad enemy in the person of Barbara Tellerman. We've also been retained to look into certain business dealings of Hank Colmar. Using the accounting skills of Royce Tellerman's firm, and a very expensive, but extremely thorough private detective service, we've amassed some interesting findings. I'll drop them off after the trial, though you may want to bring in the U.S. Attorney for these."

"You're a mean old prick, you know that, Dan?" Martin couldn't hold back a big grin.

He shrugged. "Guilty as charged. Raymond Henry's business built our firm. I may be a prick, but I'm a loyal one. We've done everything above board, and can defend all our work. Consider it a final gift, before I go back to being a burr in your saddle."

Before Martin could comment, there was a loud knock on the door behind the bench. A bailiff, followed by the Judge, entered the courtroom. "All rise!"

The deep baritone voice paused to let everyone comply with his directions. Standing silently before his seat, the Judge casually surveyed the courtroom.

"All manner of persons having business before this Honorable Court come forward and be heard. God save the Commonwealth and this Court. The Honorable Lawrence J. Milton presiding. Please be seated and come to order."

When the audience settled in, both sides remained standing.

"Good morning everyone." The judge greeted. Once those in the courtroom returned the greeting, he nodded to the parties. "I trust no further pretrial issues have come up since we spoke last?"

Couched as a question, it sounded more like a dare to either side to continue the pretrial sniping Martin was pleased the judge put an end to late last night.

"Hearing none, Bailiff, you may bring in the Jury."

Slowly the twelve jurors and two alternates quietly made their way to their predetermined seats. Once they were seated, Judge Milton turned back to the parties. "You may be seated. Counsel for the government, do you wish to make an opening statement?"

The question was another absurd formality of court, one that always brought a hint of a grin to Martin's face. Of course he would make an opening. "Thank you, your Honor."

Adjusting his silver cufflinks, he buttoned the top button of his suit and walked around the table to face the judge. "May it please the court." Another archaic practice. Turning toward the jurors, he remembered to smile. This was his element, what he enjoyed most about the practice of law. Before him was a blank canvas waiting to accept the paint, so the picture of what happened would come into focus. All that was needed were the brush strokes of a master. Martin knew he was that master.

"Good morning ladies and gentlemen of the Jury. My name is Martin Pratner, and I represent the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. We're here today because on October 7th, 2009, Jordan Colmar plotted and carried out the brutal beating of Peter Gregory."

And with that I can officially say, Second Shot is 'Complete' and hit the little button.

Thanks to everyone who offered support and encouragement along the way. Knowing people were reading and interested spurred me to try and make it better with each chapter - well my writing at least. I hope to have the short story out before summer, but who can say. I also have a story or two bouncing around involving one or two of these characters that will bring Jason and Peter, Darryl and maybe even Dean back as supporting cast. But that is a ways away for sure.

Andy

Copyright © 2011 Andrew Q Gordon; All Rights Reserved.
If you enjoyed what you have read, please leave a reaction and/or comment for the author!

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Chapter Comments



Andy,

 

WHAT a TEASE - you "bastid" - as one of my northeastern cohorts would say...

 

LOL

 

 

Not very nice of you to end it there and leave us hanging for the short story that you promised for the trial of Jordan. And then, to throw in the tidbits about Jordan's dear old dad and his shady business practices that would seem to rise to the level of criminal activity...

 

I sure hope as part of Jordan's comeuppance that we see the rest of the haughty Colmars get theirs too! :devil:

 

Thanks again for giving us Second Shot!

  • Like 1
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Thank you again for sharing your talent and the "lives" of these characters with all of us.

I look forward to all of your future writings. :)

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On 03/20/2011 11:15 AM, KevinD said:
Andy,

 

WHAT a TEASE - you "bastid" - as one of my northeastern cohorts would say...

 

LOL

 

 

Not very nice of you to end it there and leave us hanging for the short story that you promised for the trial of Jordan. And then, to throw in the tidbits about Jordan's dear old dad and his shady business practices that would seem to rise to the level of criminal activity...

 

I sure hope as part of Jordan's comeuppance that we see the rest of the haughty Colmars get theirs too! :devil:

 

Thanks again for giving us Second Shot!

What??? I so could've been worse and left it ambiguous what happened to J & P. I mean I gotta keep something back to keep folks interested. :P Besides, I want that short story to be finished before I start posting. I don't want to feel under the gun again to get it finished like I did toward the end of this. :)
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On 03/20/2011 11:27 AM, cpete said:
Thank you again for sharing your talent and the "lives" of these characters with all of us.

I look forward to all of your future writings. :)

You betcha, thanks for reading. In some ways, I still sees these two and in other ways, I've been moving on for a bit, planning what's next. What exactly is next is a secret for now, but maybe in a week or two I can start something else. It will be VERY different from this I fear. Not sure if folks will like it, but I wasn't sure folks would like this when I started so only way to find out is to post it. Thanks for the note. Andy
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You set the stage for the big showdown at trial and then let it drop like a lead balloon announcing the story is ended...Epilogues are: a short chapter or section at the end of a literary work, usually detailing the fate of its characters. The fate of the miscreant on trial was only implied and

not detailed, not even in broad strokes. So a great story with an epilogue that in my humble opinion sucked.

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On 03/20/2011 02:09 PM, Daddydavek said:
You set the stage for the big showdown at trial and then let it drop like a lead balloon announcing the story is ended...Epilogues are: a short chapter or section at the end of a literary work, usually detailing the fate of its characters. The fate of the miscreant on trial was only implied and

not detailed, not even in broad strokes. So a great story with an epilogue that in my humble opinion sucked.

DD, Sorry about that, I have said a couple times, I will detail the trial in a separate short story. The purpose of the 'Epilogue' was simply to hint at the trial to come, more or less to let folks know it will be forthcoming. I suppose in the strictest sense this was not an epilogue, and for that I apologize, It is/was more of a preview for the short story to come. Not really a satisfying answer, I suppose. For that I apologize.
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So sorry to see 'Finis', have enjoyed every word. Like most 'readers' I’ve looked forward each day until the next chapter arrives. Glad J & P got together again would have been sad otherwise. Hope the future finds me reading more of your words AND that you find as much enjoyment in your writing as I do the reading.

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On 03/20/2011 03:01 PM, byboy said:
So sorry to see 'Finis', have enjoyed every word. Like most 'readers' I’ve looked forward each day until the next chapter arrives. Glad J & P got together again would have been sad otherwise. Hope the future finds me reading more of your words AND that you find as much enjoyment in your writing as I do the reading.
I thank you for this. Yes I am a tad sorry to see it over too, but hopefully then next set of characters will grab me just as much - and Yes I enjoy it too, though there are times I get frustrated when I can't get things just the way I want them and wonder 'why the F am I doing this?' But those are rare. :)
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On 03/20/2011 08:12 PM, Simonjames30 said:
Really looking forward to the trail now :)
It's all up in my head, I just need to get it out onto paper. So hopefully sooner than later. Thanks
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Thank you for this story. It has been a wonderful read. Good character development, nice surprises and a tight plot. Keep on writing.

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I agree with daddydavek above. This is a fabulous story. I was even willing to accept that J & P might not end up together. But to promise us an epilogue then drop it cold right when it was getting interesting saying "fini". I said to myself well FU. Then I felt a whole lot better when I read in one of your comments that you were planning on covering the trial in another story. Yea, I was placated somewhat.

 

Aside from that irritant you are a really really good story teller.

 

 

 

 

 

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On 03/21/2011 01:56 AM, MontrealOrmolu said:
Thank you for this story. It has been a wonderful read. Good character development, nice surprises and a tight plot. Keep on writing.
Thank you. :) I appreciate it.
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On 03/21/2011 02:36 AM, Frostina said:
**sobs**

Thanks for the wonderful journey! **sniffles**

 

:hug:

Thanks for the help Frosty - You are part of what made it so good :)
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On 03/21/2011 06:47 AM, donkehoti said:
I agree with daddydavek above. This is a fabulous story. I was even willing to accept that J & P might not end up together. But to promise us an epilogue then drop it cold right when it was getting interesting saying "fini". I said to myself well FU. Then I felt a whole lot better when I read in one of your comments that you were planning on covering the trial in another story. Yea, I was placated somewhat.

 

Aside from that irritant you are a really really good story teller.

 

 

 

 

Sorry to you too, :/ Lesson learned - I think i said this in the very beginning but this is my first story to post on line, so I apologize for this last mistake. I suppose in my mind I see them as related [and something like the little blurb at the end of the Iron Man movies or Xman where they hint at what will be in the next movie] I do indeed plan to write the trial. Unlike the rest of the story, I found the preview chapter was very easy to write - but then, it is so much easier writing what you know than making it up as you go. I apologize again, and promise to learn from this. Andy
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LOL. Sorry, seems like some people felt a bit cheated w/ this one :P

 

Well, I'd have to say it wasn't what I was expecting in an epilogue-- it actually feels more like teaser for the upcoming short story. If that was the purpose, then it has done its job :)

 

I'm not actually a huge fan of far-in-the-future epilogues-- usually I like to imagine for myself what becomes of the main characters. So I'm not too upset w/ this :)

 

Looking forward to your future work.

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On 03/21/2011 10:30 AM, Sara Alva said:
LOL. Sorry, seems like some people felt a bit cheated w/ this one :P

 

Well, I'd have to say it wasn't what I was expecting in an epilogue-- it actually feels more like teaser for the upcoming short story. If that was the purpose, then it has done its job :)

 

I'm not actually a huge fan of far-in-the-future epilogues-- usually I like to imagine for myself what becomes of the main characters. So I'm not too upset w/ this :)

 

Looking forward to your future work.

Sara,Yes, this was not a 'lookie what happened to the pair in the distant future' type thing. I think the point was well taken by some that this should have been called something else, next time I'll learn from that. I agree with you on not giving the two sentence summary of each character - either do a second story OR let folks see the future for themselves. Thanks for the note :)
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What an awesome story! I was hooked from the first line! I'm so sorry to see the story end, as I will miss reading about Jason and Peter.

 

Needless to say, I was crying my eyes out in chapter 49, hoping against hope that Peter would find his way back to Jason. I am so glad I wasn't disappointed! :) I loved the part where Peter dropped off the "letter" and he was waiting for Jason to read it and run after him. lol They know each other so well!

 

I was just so happy when they worked things out. I was afraid that Peter would just let things hang, hoping Jason would get the hint that it was over. I'm glad he's more mature than that. I'm also thrilled that he admitted he needed counseling. I'm so glad his mom (who is terrific, btw) made him see what he needd to do, w/o coming right out and telling him.

 

This was such a fantastic story! Thank you for sharing it with us! :)

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On 03/23/2011 08:40 AM, Lisa said:
What an awesome story! I was hooked from the first line! I'm so sorry to see the story end, as I will miss reading about Jason and Peter.

 

Needless to say, I was crying my eyes out in chapter 49, hoping against hope that Peter would find his way back to Jason. I am so glad I wasn't disappointed! :) I loved the part where Peter dropped off the "letter" and he was waiting for Jason to read it and run after him. lol They know each other so well!

 

I was just so happy when they worked things out. I was afraid that Peter would just let things hang, hoping Jason would get the hint that it was over. I'm glad he's more mature than that. I'm also thrilled that he admitted he needed counseling. I'm so glad his mom (who is terrific, btw) made him see what he needd to do, w/o coming right out and telling him.

 

This was such a fantastic story! Thank you for sharing it with us! :)

Lisa, Thanks for the comments, I guess I am a sucker for happy endings - a part of me wanted to end it where they did not make it, but then this just seemed a better way. Glad you enjoyed it. Andy
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I had already said goodbye to the characters with last chapter but it was great to read a little more about them even if they just are mentioned. At the same time it was a good way to end the story and I would love to read the one-shot when you post it. Thanks for sharing such an amazing and beautiful story with us :)

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On 03/23/2011 04:59 PM, ddz008 said:
I had already said goodbye to the characters with last chapter but it was great to read a little more about them even if they just are mentioned. At the same time it was a good way to end the story and I would love to read the one-shot when you post it. Thanks for sharing such an amazing and beautiful story with us :)
You're welcome - but I enjoyed writing and posting so I thank you as well. One of the great things about posting on line like this is the comments and interaction I got with the people who were reading. Even the critical comments were good because I learned a LOT during the course of writing this. SO thank you for reading and for your comments along the way. :) -- Andy
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What a satisfying read. I discovered your story two days ago, and greedily inhaled the whole thing. Perhaps I should have stretched it out and savored it a little more slowly, but once I was under the spell of your storytelling, I couldn't stop, except to sleep. The interaction you maintain with your readers is fascinating. "Thank you" seems like an inadequate response, so I will just say "Farewell."

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On 03/27/2011 12:57 PM, charlieocho said:
What a satisfying read. I discovered your story two days ago, and greedily inhaled the whole thing. Perhaps I should have stretched it out and savored it a little more slowly, but once I was under the spell of your storytelling, I couldn't stop, except to sleep. The interaction you maintain with your readers is fascinating. "Thank you" seems like an inadequate response, so I will just say "Farewell."
Feel free to go back and re-read it again when you aren't so anxious. :P Seriously, thank you for your comments. I am glad you enjoyed it, and I don't know about farewell. Hopefully I'll entice you with something else in the near future. Andy
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