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    Give Me A Chance

    29 years ago, …

    Seated in reclining leather chairs around the rich oakwood conference room table the prospective clients of Porter, Madison & Associates had a spectacular view of Pittsburg’s skyline from the floor to ceiling windows of the 40th floor law offices. The two men and a woman dressed impeccably in business suits had been served their choice of designer coffees, and a continental breakfast prior to starting the meeting.

    As they sat around chatting amicably with Melvin and his life-long friend and law partner Charles Madison each side was sizing up the other socially before deciding if they would do business together. The clients were siblings that owned equal shares of a family business but were at odds with other stakeholders. The dispute could result in a multi-million-dollar lawsuit that required a law-firm with experience, integrity, and know-how to defend them. PM&A not only fit the bill but had been highly recommended.

    They pushed the dishes aside to be cleared by the discrete staff, who quietly removed the breakfast items. Pitchers of ice-cold water, drinking glasses and crystal bowls filled with mint candies were placed on the table within easy reach. Once they were assured of privacy with the staff leaving and closing the door behind them, Melvin cleared his throat and looked to the eldest.

    “So, Simon how can PM&A be of service?” Melvin asked with his sharp #2 pencil poised over a legal pad. He and Charlie usually had a junior associate in the client meetings for notetaking but generally when meeting for the first time, they preferred to do it themselves. Afterwards they would compare notes, assess the viability of taking on the case and if decided would farm the work out to the associates.

    Thirty minutes into the meeting there was a soft knock on the wooden door. Everyone turned their attention towards the doorway when Melvin’s executive assistant poked her head in and motioned for him to step outside. Knowing that Marva had strict instructions not to interrupt client meetings unless it was a life or death emergency, or the building was on fire Melvin immediately excused himself with an apology and asked the family to continue talking through their concerns with Charlie. He was sure he’d just be a minute but as a lawyer Melvin was conscientious of other’s time. Even a few minutes could be costly when time is measured in billable hours.

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    1. Love when n Author takes the reader back in time because it always feels like stepping into some else skin reminding myself how swiftly lives can be re-routed to flow on a different path.

      Smooth chapter Bat

      • Zhenya, thank you for reading and commenting. Totally agree, Melvin was very irresponsible. He shouldn’t have been with her in the first place, but unprotected sex with anyone outside of a committed relationship is taking a chance.

      • SassyGran – thank you. Happy Easter to you too.

        I know it’s hard to like Melvin given his past behaviors but he is repentant and hopefully we will see some good deeds and selfless acts before he leaves us. Thanks for loyally reading and commenting.

    2. Hey Bat,

      My apologize for commenting so late. Have this week night shifts.

      Like father like daughter, both could not cope with the stress and pressure and fell prey to someone with whom they could temporarily escape. Only Melvin was so stupid to get a STD and lost his manhood and couldn’t give Maxine what she so much wanted, a second child.

      Both betrayed the woman they see as their love of their lives, but Bette fought hard and long to prove to Tina that she is worth the second chance and i am very happy that Tina is willing to work it out so they can be a family.

      Great chapter!

      • Bibi28, I just posted this last night so you are not late. Thank you for your comment as you summed it up perfectly.

        Bette will see the parallels in their behavior and their lack of coping skills and hopefully learn a lesson that escaping your troubles in the arms of another is destructive not only to relationships but to lives. She is fortunate that Tina is giving her a second chance.

        I didn’t write it into this story, but if you recall on the show after Bette cheated with Candace she also had a one-night stand that she picked up in a bar when she was in NY. I decided to use a similar scenario for Melvin.

        Thanks again for your insight and for loyally reading and commenting. Hope the night shift isn’t too hard on you.

    3. This was a fantastic chapter. Never would I have guessed the reason for the demise of his marriage to Maxine. He was a very weak man and an idiot to have unprotected sex. Can not blame Maxine at all for leaving him, she did the only thing she could given the circumstances, poor thing. Just hate that she had to be written out so soon because Bette needed her so much. You have done miraculous work writing this story and explaining everything the show did not and glossed over her childhood. Thanks for making this all clear.

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