Author's Note: Good day, everyone. I know I said in my last fic that my next one would be light and fluffy by comparison but that story, unfortunately, is not very well formed in my head and I'll have to continue thinking on it. This story is however.
Warning: Contains violence, gory details, and potential character death. I am definitely attempting to keep the gory details to a minimum, but you've read the summary, you have been warned. Also, it goes against the inner writer in me to forewarn you what tragedy befalls whom. Read cautiously!
I also just wanted to state that I'm not sure if there will be romantic pairings but, if there is, it will not be Harvey/Mike. Not a fan of that pairing.
All the Cards Fall
"Do you have an appointment here, sir?" The security guard at the foot of the elevator peered at the middle-aged man politely enough.
"Yes, my name is Simon Gullock. I have an appointment with Mr. Daniel Porter. I'm here to discuss my pro bono; my landlord illegally evicted me. I've got all the paperwork right here," the man said; he smiled wryly and held up his briefcase.
"And you sir?" The security guard turned to the younger man with green eyes and straw-colored blonde hair.
"I'm his son. Moral support," he replied briskly. The guard stayed focused on him, curiosity niggling at the back of his head.
"Are we good to go?" Simon asked.
The guard shook his head and looked down at the computer screen, scrolling with his finger until he found it. "Ah, here you are." He frowned. "You're about half an hour early."
"Traffic wasn't quite as bad as I thought it would be," Simon said with a grin and a shrug.
"Very well. You can go up, but, I warn you, you might be in for a wait."
Neither one of them knew the partners still had another hour in a meeting.
Harvey was desperately trying to pay attention to Jessica as she out-lined the firm's major cases for the next two weeks, but he had his own case right now that required his attention. However, Jessica had said to him that he better be there or he would get stuck with pro bono for a month. But why the meetings had to be bi-weekly, he honestly did not understand.
Everyone knew, however, that the primary function of the meeting was meant to be a reminder that they and their associate were not the only lawyers at the firm. It was useful from time to time to get a second opinion or pointers on a different way to tackle the problem, but Harvey's case was practically shut and closed. His client was an African American who came to them claiming the pharmacy he had been working at fired him so they could replace him with a white man. It really hadn't taken much digging to find two Hispanics, another African American, and even a Native American who had been fired under similar circumstances in completely different locations by the parent company. From there, it had been easy to convince the people to join the suit and strengthen their case against the company.
Harvey expected a settlement offer within the next day, but first he and Mike had been forced to deal with nearly a month's worth of court delays, feet dragging, witness planting, bribery, and trickery but now they were finally down to the wire. He had the evidence necessary to criminally press charges against the company for the bribery and all of its other illegal tactics and he would it if the company didn't step up to the plate and make a deal now. It was a shame, really, since Harvey loved to see these types go to prison, but bankrupting the company was, anymore these days, a much worse punishment than jail. He had already vowed to take Mike and Donna to the best restaurant money could buy, once the deal went through.
"Harvey, are you paying attention?"
He glanced up from his notebook from which he had been writing and said, "Of course. I'm just taking notes." The same sentence showed on five lines of the notebook: All work and no play makes Harvey a dull boy.
She gave him a flat stare, seemingly knowing that notes were not what he was taking, but she simply said, "Good."
As soon as she turned back to the Powerpoint, he glanced at his watch. It took all of his self control not to roll his eyes; there was still another hour to the meeting. For a brief instant, he actually envied Mike who was reviewing his pro bono cases.
Mike chugged the last of his Red Bull and looked at it as if hoping it would magically refill. He hadn't gotten much sleep the night before from all the files Louis had buried him in and the stress from the Wildeman vs. Brunscott Corp. was really starting to wear him down. And that just so happened to be his last can of Redbull; it looked like he would have to sustain himself on coffee the rest of the day.
"Aww…did little Mikey get stuck doing pro bono work while the important people are in a meeting? Harvey finally decide to kick you outta the loop?" Mike drew his mouth into a frown, but he tipped his chin back as a sign of confidence as he stared up into Kyle's sneering face. "Don't worry, he'll find real talent soon enough."
"Oh? Where?" Mike asked, making a show of glancing around the bullpen. "In you? Hah! I heard you messed up the filing of your last pro bono case and that's why Louis has you doing all the bitch work."
The sneer on Kyle's face morphed into a scowl. "You don't belong here, Ross. One day you'll figure that out."
"You mean when hell freezes over?" Mike asked, his own mouth quirking in a smirk reminiscent to the one Harvey wore.
Kyle's face only darkened and then he walked away to the copy room.
His and Harvey's successes were starting to lift him up from obscurity and the other associates attacks were starting to fall in favor of admiration, but mostly in grudging respect. Only Kyle, Greg, and a new guy named Sean really bothered to heckle him, but he could now throw it back in their faces from the top of the pile of victories he now stood on. Really, only Louis bothered him, in a poor attempt at reminding him where his place still was in the firm's food chain.
The feeling was gratifying. He finally felt like he was getting a handle on the work, turning what used to be several all-nighters in a row to just a couple of pretty late nights. He could do this.
He reached for his next file and was just pulling it down when several gunshots suddenly pierced the silence in the vicinity of the elevators, followed by several shrill screams. The file spilled all over the floor, but he ignored it as he jumped to his feet and stared out toward the main hallway, his heart thudding painfully in his chest. He was just beginning to wonder if he imagined it when several more shots rang out and all of the rest of the associates dived under their desks.
Mike stood rooted to the spot, his mind racing. He glanced down at the space under his desk and then glanced over to Harold who was crouched under his own desk. He almost laughed, a pathetic and weak sound which died in his throat. The desk could barely hide him. He didn't feel safe there. But then were?
The answer seemed natural: Harvey's office.
More gun shots and more screams. Shit! They were just around the corner. His decision made, Mike darted around his desk and ran toward the hall on the opposite wall and he disappeared around the corner as the gunman walked into the area.