Lay Legal Episode 2 (A series)
Like a faulty generator, Mercy snored and slumbered with reckless abandon.
The previous night was a rumble. What started as a simple house party soon
snowballed into a boundless nitery. At 9:45 am, distressed bangs on her door
pulled her out of her damning slumber. Kechi got worried not having seen her
usually punctual neighbour leave for work, so she couldn’t help but make sure
she was alright. Beset by the resounding door bangs, Mercy woke up quite
pokily, not immediately figuring out what part of the planet she was. After few
seconds of somnolence, she realized that she was home. Another 10 seconds
were dedicated to reminiscing on what happened overnight and how she got
there; but that venture was quickly rendered inconsequential when her heavy
eyes strayed to the clock on her wall:
Mercy: 9:45 am! Ye! My job is gone! I’m officially unemployed!
Mercy sprang up from her couch like an ambush leopardess, ignoring both the
hangover and the frantic calls from Kechi who had begun to scream her name
out loud. At this point, female hygiene was not a thing. That an average lady
would get fully prepared to go out in 10 minutes is analogous to a sloth
outrunning a fox. This however was the case, Mercy was ready for work in 10
minutes; her shower lasted 2 minutes; dressing up: 2 minutes; searching for,
finding and throwing into her handbag her Avila melanin beauty cream she
couldn’t seem to do without: 2 minutes, make up or whatever it was she did to
her face: 2 minutes and searching for her office keys, well, 1:45 seconds. She ran
out of the house, met kechi by her door post, thanked her briskly for waking
her up and pleaded with her to help her lock up her apartment; she was too in
a hurry to do that. On her precipitous journey to the office, she looked through
her ‘silenced’ phone to behold 9 missed calls from Sade and 5 from Mr
Bushman. That Sade was calling was quite understood; a simulated, watertight
tale would have been agreed by the duo to comfortably explain why she was
running late, they were two peas in a pod. On the other hand, Mr Bushman’s
call meant that the safety pin on a long held grenade had been pulled off.
When you sit for an exam and gravely misfire on certain questions, checking
the result for that exam is usually a problem, but you would eventually. That
was the exact feeling with which Mercy retuned Sade’s call. She didn’t want to
hear that Mr Bushman had got to the office before her, but if that was the case,
she needed to learn it from Sade, not Mr Bushman.
Mercy: Hello, Sade, Sade, please tell me oga is not in the office.
Sade: He is not. But what happened to you?
Mercy: Please I will explain when I get there. But didn’t he call you? I missed
his calls 5 times; didn’t he call you to ask about me?
Sade: I blocked his numbers the moment I called you 4 times without success.
Mercy: I love, I love you, I looovee you. Please I have been in the office but
went out to get breakfast and forgot my phone and it was placed on
silent so you couldn’t hear it ring. That’s the story.
Sade: No wahala. But are you close?
Sade: Please hurry.
Mercy: Ok bye.
You may wonder; is this not the same frail Sade who could hardly sustain a
basic lie for 2 minutes the other day in court, how was she smart enough to do
that? Of course she is, nothing had changed; she’s never a good, lone liar; the
gimmicks and tricks always emanated from Mercy. Sade couldn’t see or reach
her; it was customary for Mr Bushman to call the office in the morning just to
get early updates for the day. Now Mercy wasn’t picking her calls, it meant that
she wouldn’t have picked Mr Bushman’s either, Ede, the Office Assistant got a
new number, Eghe the Head of Chambers was out of the jurisdiction for a
matter, Harrison another lawyer in the firm was on an admission bed. The
man’s call was imminent. She didn’t want to give Mercy away; her signature
distress had returned. She thought to put off her phone but remembered she
expected an important call from one of the firm’s most important clients, so
she called Eghe, who told her to block Mr Bushman for a while.
10:30 am, Mercy hurriedly walked into the office complex and boom:
Ede: Good morning Miss Mercy, oga called me to ask about you and Miss Sade.
He said none of you could be reached. He...
Mercy: ...What? How did he even get your number? I thought you just got it.
Wait, what did you tell him?
Ede: I told him you were yet to come to work and that Miss Sade was inside
but refused to take the phone from me to speak with him.
Mercy: Ah! You... Ah! So you just couldn’t cover up for me?
Ede: Hahahahahahaha... Just kidding, he didn’t call; he doesn’t even have this
Mercy: You are crazy! And I love you.
Mercy, 100% relieved walked into Sade’s office and immediately got a call from
Mercy: Hello good morning sir, please I’m sorry to have missed your calls I...
Mr Bushman: ...What calls? I didn’t call you. Anyway, have you effected the
corrections to our Statement of Defence in the Hummel’s case?
Mercy: Yes... Yes... Yes sir I have.
Mr Bushman: Good, I need it filed today.
Mercy: Of course sir, I’m on it.
Mr Bushman: Okay fine, bye for now.
With a quizzical glare on her face Mercy dropped the call, went through her
call log to be sure of what calls had come in and this time she saw Mr Usman.
Adrenalin, fear and a hangover messed with her mind. Mr Bushman never
Mercy: Na wa!!
Sade: What happened, are we in trouble?
Mercy: No... No... No trouble. Please unblock oga’s numbers. I mistook his
name for Mr Usman on my call log.
Sade: So he didn’t call you before?
Mercy: That you love.
Sade: You look like my grandmother in her grave, what happened?
Just as Mercy was about explaining to Sade how it all went down the previous
night, Mr Usman’s call came in again.
Mercy: Ohooo, ah! In what language can I make this old man understand that I
am not interested in him or his money? It is Monday morning for
Christ’s sake. Who dey toast person on Monday morning?
Sade: Mr Usman abi? Pick the call, you don’t know what he’s calling you for.
Mercy: Hello good morning sir.
Mr Usman: Mercy, where did you drop your phone? I have been calling.
Mercy: It is Monday morning sir, people get busy with work.
Mr Usman: By work you mean your case that was almost struck out in court
Mercy: Ye! My God! Sir, sorry please what happened, was it struck out?
Mr Usman: Almost, I said. Well, I would be glad to discuss the details of what
I did to salvage it over dinner tonight.
Mercy: What dinner? Mtcheeeew. (she drops the call). Ounje ma kan esẹ iso ẹ!.
Details I will simply go to court to get from the registrars. Mtcheeeew.
Mercy had 3 other cases she handled on a personal level, distinct from the
firm’s cases. The one Mr Usman had just salvaged was a divorce matter she was
handling for a secondary school classmate who wanted out of a 3 year old
abusive marriage. Mercy ought to have been in court to explain why her client
couldn’t be around to open her case that day and plead for an adjournment.
Her absence and that of her client was a level of nonchalance Justice Hadiza
Mamman of Court 77 was not known for condoning.
Sade: Who struck out what?
Mercy: The old man helped me out with Ima’s case and wants dinner in return.
Sade: Whoa! Ima’s case was today? Shey it was supposed to be for hearing?
Mercy: Yeah, but he helped me out.
Sade: Babe it is just dinner; go, to show some appreciation at least.
Mercy: Ehenn. Like the appreciation you showed Mr Thomson the other day,
Sade: What again?
Mercy: I have not effected a word of correction to the Statement of Defence in
Hummel’s case and that’s what oga called me for. Please I will tell you
about last night later. I need to get that done now. We are filing it today.
Sade: Okay, no wahala.
Mercy: Meanwhile, have you heard from Harrison lately? His number didn’t
connect all weekend.
Sade: Yeah, he’s billed to be discharged today.
Mercy: Okay thank God (she leaves for her office).
Sade, now calm returned to the file she attempted to work on before Mercy
stepped in, but she soon ran into some difficulties only Eghe could comfortably
explain, so she placed a call across to him, but a stern female voice responded.
She immediately realized that territory was being marked, so she simply ended
the call. Immediately she dropped the call, the call from the important client
came in. After she was done talking with the client, since she couldn’t reach
Eghe, she thought of Google and then began to surf for answers online when
her eyes strayed to an online report stating that Justice Dakata was yet to be
released and so she said a little prayer in her mind for the honourable judge.
Thanks For Reading. Next Scene Comes Up Next Week, Same Day.
Author : MR LEONARD OKOJIE, ESQ
MISS MARY INYANG
MISS PRECIOUS OYAOLE
For comments and feedback, contact Mr Leonard Okojie on : firstname.lastname@example.org