A Lawyer For The Devil
A LAWYER FOR THE DEVIL
A ChrisEffe Bliss
Palace City was the capital of the Kingdom of Eden. It was one of the most beautiful places on earth. Located on the northern tip of the kingdom, it was an island within an island, and this was where the palace of King Henry Okraku was situated.
Some of the most important offices and departments were located in Palace City. Designed by some of the best engineering minds and masters of building, Palace City was a rhythm of beauty, a classic interplay of water, architecture, and nature. A superb harmony of man-made and natural plains that transformed it into a picturesque terrain.
King Henry Okraku of the Kingdom of Eden was married to Queen Hannah. They had been blessed with two daughters: Mary and Gwendoline.
It was a cold, bleary evening in the kingdom, but the weather was the least concern to the men gathered inside one of the luxurious conference rooms in the palace.
It was a circular, beautiful room, replete with deep Arabian carpets, ceiling-to-floor Venetian curtains, imported big armchairs, screens, projectors, and other modern gadgets.
The opulent and charismatic king was wearing a long, flowing, black gown with gold trimmings, his clothing a clear reminder that he was still mourning his older daughter’s death. He sat comfortably in a huge throne-like chair with fruit juices, fruit trays and water on a golden glass table on his right.
There was an elderly, well-groomed man seated on the king’s left. He had a shock of short grey hair, lean face, and was wearing an impeccable black suit, white shirt and polka-dotted tie. He was Sir Lancelot Agyei, known by his knighted nickname, Sir Lance, and he was the head of Special Palace Force, the elite division responsible for security in the Kingdom.
Next to him was a bald-headed, grim-faced, elderly man. He was Jacob Acquah, the Chief Justice of the kingdom.
The Army Commander, Bernard Essel and the Police Supreme Commander, Richard Target, completed the ensemble of high-ranking officers in the room.
At the foot of the oval desk was the only woman in the room. She was a middle-aged beauty dressed in a severe black skirt suit that did little to hide her voluptuous full-figure. She was a picture of strength and beauty combined. Her hair, cut close to her skull, was sprinkled with grey and carefully-groomed into curls, and her wide, lovely eyes missed nothing as she looked solemnly at the king.
Her name was Pelagie Saint, but most called her Pel. She was the Administrator of the Eden Palace and wielded considerable power. It was rumoured that her shrewd mind and somewhat brutal intolerance for mediocrity made her an asset to the king, and made her a favourite among her peers.
On Pelagie’s right was a handsome middle-aged man wearing the elaborately-designed costume of a pastor. The clerical around his neck was a pristine white. His hair was dark but sprinkled with grey. He was clean-shaven, a little short, but with good looks. He was Archbishop Thomas Holy, the president of the massive and powerful Church of Eden. This man was respected across the world because of his global sermons and zeal for the work of the Lord. He was admired, perhaps greatly so, because he was celibate, and had been celibate almost his whole adult life, preferring to remain unmarried for the sake of the Lord.
The Archbishop said a short prayer to start the meeting, then he leaned back and mostly observed what was going on.
After discussing pertinent issues for almost an hour, the king’s face became grave as he ticked off an item on the agenda list in front of him.
“Now, to a matter that is very close to my heart,” he said softly.
They all looked at the great king they adored so much as he carefully reached into a bowl at his elbow and scooped a mixture of exotic nuts, and carefully popped a couple into his mouth.
“So, this diabolic murderer has still not disclosed where the bodies of my daughter and grandchildren are,” he said finally, his eyes sad. “Not even after the truth serum was administered to him? You told me the serum was unbeatable, Richard!”
The police chief cleared his throat and spread his hands worriedly.
“The serum, unfortunately, couldn’t stay in his body, Your Highness,” he said quickly. “No matter the dosage administered, it knocks him out completely, paralyzing him and making him sweat profusely, and by the time he woke up, the residual effects had no potency whatsoever!”
“I need my daughter and my grandchildren!” King Okraku said in an agitated voice and dropped the nuts back into the bowl. “How many days does he have before being put to death? How can we kill him when he has still not disclosed where he hid the bodies?”
The Chief Justice leaned forward suddenly.
“Your Highness, the execution would have to be stayed,” he said quickly. “We granted them a second appeal, due to the incessant pressure from the western world, the United States, and especially the United Nations.”
“Again?” the king asked with a displeased face. “How long are you going to do this? The lengthy court case was followed by a lengthy appeal, and the bastard lost both. He should be dead already! And now you granted him a second appeal? Do our laws allow that, Jacob?”
“Unfortunately, yes, Your Highness,” Jacob Acquah said quickly. “Ken Kokou happens to be an international figure, a man with clout, and very close to the president of Ghana. The first appeal was handled by foreigners, and so the rest of the world pressured us to grant a second appeal. They’re bringing a lawyer from Ghana to handle that, a gentleman called Chris Bawa.”
At the mention of the name, Pel Saint looked down quickly, and her lips tightened. She quickly picked her pen and wrote Chris’ name on her notepad in bold letters.
“Bawa?” the king asked, his voice agitated as he leaned forward. “Isn’t he the chap that brought the American company, Cinnamon, to its knees? Is he the one we visited at Washington to congratulate, Pel?”
“Yes, Sano,” Pel said calmly, using the local title of ‘Father’ for the king. “He’s the one.”
“But that’s not good news!” the king exploded. “He’s coming to defend this demon? I thought he had some semblance of honour, that he chose his cases without guile!”
“I thought so too,” Pel continued, still calmly, and she put two heavy lines under Chris’ name.
“He shouldn’t be a problem,” Jacob Acquah said quickly. “The case is airtight, Your Highness. There will not be a lengthy hearing. He would only be asked to respond to the substantive charges, offer any rebuttal if necessary, maybe offer a plea for leniency. But, as it stands now, no one can get Ken Kokou off the hook.”
“If anybody could, it would be Bawa!” the king said explosively. “Cinnamon thought they were invisible until that young man showed up in court! Impressed all African presidents when he won that case. I even learnt he’s never lost a case before!”
“More luck than fact, Your Honour,” Jacob stressed. “He’s losing this.”
The king sighed.
“This case has dragged on long enough, and gained too much international attention, and in a way, it has given negative publicity to our dear kingdom. You people should ensure that this appeal, no matter what happens, is definitive, and would end this prolonged fiasco. I want it done with!”
“It would be dealt with, Your Highness,” said Bernard Essel. “As Mr Acquah said, it shouldn’t take long. And as soon as this one is over, Ken Kokou will receive the just punishment he deserves. Rest assured that I’m going to use all means possible to ensure that he discloses where he’s keeping the bodies, or where he hid them.”
“Please, do that for me, Ben. It is of utmost importance to me.”
“May the words of the King hold true,” they all said.
“And before I forget, when is Mr Bawa expected here?”
The Chief Justice quickly opened a white folder in front of him and extracted a sheet. He picked up spectacles, put them on, and squinted at the sheet.
“He’s arriving with three members of the Kokou family, Your Highness. They’ll be here on Friday. Mr Bawa has been scheduled to meet me on Saturday morning, then he would be allowed to see Mr Kokou that same Saturday. I will give him the required one week to familiarize himself with the case, and then, on the following Monday, we’ll begin the appeal, and hopefully complete it that same week.”
The king nodded.
“I see,” he said and touched his chin thoughtfully. “Alright then. Pelagie, kindly arrange for Mr Chris Bawa and his entourage to be hosted on Palace grounds. Give them one of the royal chalets.”
“Sano!” Sir Lance cried, aghast. “Really? I don’t think that’s… no, Sano! Let them find their own accommodation!”
“I understand your ire, my dear friend,” the King said calmly. “But these are unusual times. The eyes of the world are on us, and the pressure will mount. Already, the people hate Ken Kokou. If we allow his people to go unprotected, something bad could happen to them, I’m sure of it. Secondly, I want to meet Chris Bawa when he arrives. I want a personal favour from him. So, give them accommodation for as long as they would be here, and provide security for them too.”
Sir Lance tried to speak, but Pel Saint cut in quickly.
“May the words of the king be sacred,” she said.
She saw the deep rage on Sir Lance’s face, but she said nothing even though her lips tightened again.
They moved on to other issues, and two hours later, the meeting came to an end. As they shook each other’s hand and left the conference room, Pel Saint fell in step beside Sir Lance, and they lagged behind on the corridor.
They liked and respected each other, and had had mutual projects in the past.
“I can see your evil mind scheming,” Sir Lance said as they moved towards the doors.
“It is, for a fact,” Pel said and smiled a little, and it lit up her beautiful face for a moment. “The Chief Justice is sawdust-brained. I saw this Chris Bawa working on the Cinnamon case in the States. He is sharp, very shrewd, and very efficient. His methods were a bit unorthodox, but he gets things done. If there’s a loophole, he will find it. With the eyes of the international community on us, he could really upset this case.”
Sir Lance stopped and turned to face her.
“Coming from you, I believe it,” he said softly. “So, basically, we have to prevent Chris Bawa from handling the case. But how? I don’t see any loose ends here.”
“Actually, there is,” Pel said quietly. “It is good they’re going to be hosted here. We can arrange something for Chris Bawa that will let him be unable to go to court, something that will seriously hurt him and keep him in bed.”
“A beating?” Sir Lance asked with horror. “That’s preposterous! An internationally-recognized lawyer, here to defend a murder suspect, gets beaten and unable to function? That will crucify us, Pel.”
“Not if it is done under conditions engineered by himself, my dear Jacob. If he willingly puts his neck on the line, no one but himself will be blamed.”
Sir Lance looked at her with shock.
“And, exactly how do you plan to execute something as inconceivable as that? How would you be able to let the lawyer willingly put himself in a situation of danger?”
Pel Saint looked at the Security Capo with hard eyes.
“If I find a way to get Chris Bawa to endanger himself willingly, will you back me up? I believe I can get him to compromise himself. In the end, it would be his word against ours, but the sovereignty of the kingdom would be upheld if we’re vociferous enough, especially if the head of the Special Palace Force is indignant enough!”
“Oh, I hate your guts when you’re like this!” Sir Lance said with a soft laugh. “Alright. I don’t know how you plan to do it, or how you’re gonna pull it off. But, if you do, I’ll back you to the hilt. Yes, I can be indignant enough. But, don’t run anything on my blind side. Keep me in the fray.”
Pel smiled slowly.
It was a very bad smile.
“I will keep you on a tight leash so that you can see everything as it unfolds, my dear Sir Lance! Lawyer Chris Bawa is certainly not going to perform on this case. He is going to be involved in a bone-breaking venture.”
Sir Lance shook his head and began to walk again.
“Sometimes, I’m scared of you,” he said coldly.
“Thanks for the compliment,” Pel Saint said and smiled, but it did not reach her eyes.
Her face closed over; it was as cold as death.
“Perhaps, we can discuss this further in the comfort of my villa?” Sir Lance suggested softly, and Pel Saint laughed as she began to walk fast, swinging her amazing rump provocatively.
“I’ll see you around, Sir Lance,” she said over her shoulder. “I keep telling you this is one pussy you’re not smashing.”
“Fuck you, Pel,” he said with a disappointed giggle.
“In your dreams,” she said and quickly went through one of the doors.
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