Authors: Neil Wild
|Unravel a Crime - Tangle With Women|
|The Harcourt Press (2012)|
Jonny Brakespeare is a young English lawyer returning to practice after a period of suspension . He is desperate to restart his career, but finds himself temporarily working in a firm where the partners have a vested interest in the outcome of the white collar crime he is to defend, while outside the office, he is both sexually involved with Mel, a dancer, and receiving seductive conciliatory pressures from his former wife, Sophie. With the job comes the complication of Lisa, his attractive American assistant.....
Brakespeare is further put under pressure by his client Newberry, who has serious heart problems, and for whom the stress of a trial could be fatal. It also turns out that Newberry’s private life is far from straightforward. Everyone it seems, like Brakespeare, carries personal baggage. Nonetheless with Lisa’s help, he manages to find gaps in the evidence, and a scandal undermining the prosecution.
If you enjoy Grisham, you will enjoy Wild.
Table of Contents
Unravel a Crime; Tangle with Women
A Novel Based on a True Story
Neil Wild 1
Text Copyright © 2012 Neil Wild
All Rights Reserved 2
chapter one 5
chapter two 8
chapter three 12
chapter four 15
chapter five 19
chapter six 25
chapter seven 28
chapter eight 36
chapter nine 42
chapter ten 48
chapter eleven 56
chapter twelve 62
chapter thirteen 66
chapter fourteen 70
chapter fifteen 74
chapter sixteen 80
chapter seventeen 83
chapter eighteen 94
chapter nineteen 106
chapter twenty 111
chapter twenty one 118
chapter twenty two 120
chapter twenty three 128
chapter twenty four 132
chapter twenty five 140
chapter twenty six 143
chapter twenty seven 145
chapter twenty eight 149
chapter twenty nine 154
chapter thirty 156
chapter thirty one 160
chapter thirty two 166
chapter thirty three 170
chapter thirty four 173
chapter thirty five 176
chapter thirty six 180
chapter thirty seven 185
chapter thirty eight 189
chapter thirty nine 191
chapter forty 195
chapter forty one 198
chapter forty two 203
chapter forty three 209
chapter forty four 211
chapter forty five 215
chapter forty six 218
chapter forty seven 220
chapter forty eight 227
The man called Nick at the
London office of Legal Positions Assured Ltd., looked wearily at Jonny
It’s not going to be easy for
a man like you I’m afraid.” His soft voice blunted the edge of what he was
I realise that.”
And then there’s the
recession. I don’t know a law firm that hasn’t had to tighten it’s belt. We
can’t find enough vacancies to fill, even for criminal lawyers like yourself.”
But I can do general
Even that’s a problem. No-one
gets divorced because they can’t sell their house, and split the money. The
less business that commercial clients transact, there’s less to argue about,
and so they don’t need lawyers.” He sighed. “We’ll see what we can do of
course, but with your unfortunate track record, who is going to take you on when
they can have someone with a clean record?”
You don’t mince your words do
I’m trying to be honest.”
What about temporary jobs;
Same sort of problem. If a
fee earner goes on holiday or falls ill, firms tend to pass the work around the
office to save money. Sorry but,” he shook his head again, “think of Mr.
Not into the Classics?
Dickens; David Copperfield. Be like Mr. Micawber – ‘
At present, and
until something turns up (which I am, I may say, hourly expecting), I have
nothing to bestow but advice.’
apply to every lawyer.”
That’s the best advice that
you can give me?”
I’m afraid so.”
That’s my life at the
moment,” thought Brakespeare. “Waiting for something to turn up. Thank God for
That evening, back at his
rented room in Milton Keynes, he immediately went into the shower to wash away
the grime of London. He hated the way it made the collars of his white shirts
After ten minutes of
indulgence, the water started to run cold as it always did. He stepped out of
the shower, dried himself, and put the towel round his waist.
There was a knock on the
bathroom door. “That you, Jonny?” Without waiting to be asked, the brown girl
How did you get on?” she
Brakespeare shook his head.
Oh, honey” she said, and drew
him close to her.
Brakespeare’s head dropped
against her shoulder.
Come on. Something’ll turn
That’s what the man said.”
Never mind. Let’s cheer you
up in the usual way.”
She opened her mouth slightly,
and, looking deep into his eyes, pressed her lips against his, while at the
same time she undid his towel.
More?” Brakespeare panted,
their bodies slippery from perspiration. Mel just looked at him through dilated
He stopped suddenly.
What’s the matter?” Mel
My bloody phone.”
The annoying sound of a Latin
American ring tone grew louder and more insistent from the black Samsung on the
reached for it.
Mel groaned and rolled on her
Brakespeare leaned over her,
and picked up the phone. It was a London number that he didn’t readily
recognise. He looked at Mel. She had her eyes shut and was lying still,
waiting. The spell had been broken, and his own passion was subsiding.
With his thumb he slid the
phone open and put it to his ear. He fell on to his left side, away from Mel.
Jonny Brakespeare”, he
Jonny, it’s Nick.”
Brakespeare recognised the
voice of the man from the agency..
Is it convenient to talk?”
Mel could hear what Nick was
saying, and moved onto her back to hear better.
Yes, yes of course.”
Sorry to bother you in the
evening, but we’ve had an urgent call from a firm in Worcester. Could you go
Brakespeare would have gone
anywhere for work.
Nick chuckled. “I told you
that something would turn up, but I didn’t expect it to be so soon. Their main
litigation partner collapsed in Court today. They need someone to take his
place urgently. There’s a criminal case that needs looking at immediately.”
Sounds just the ticket.”
Brakespeare replied trying not to sound too excited. Mel had begun caressing
I faxed them your C.V. and
they said it fits the bill. Could you go there tomorrow?
There was no reason why not.
He had nothing else to do.
Yes, that’s fine.”
Have you got a paper and
pencil, I’ll give you the details.”
Just a minute, I’ll have to
With a grin he knocked Mel’s
hand away, and gave her a kiss. “Think of this as a commercial break”, he
whispered. She giggled.
Pardon?” asked Nick.
Just a moment.” Brakespeare
was not going to give a detailed explanation as to his present circumstances.
He put the phone down on the bed, and jumped out, going towards his briefcase.
He quickly found his Counsel’s
notebook and a pen, and turned back to the bed.
Mel was waving the phone,
indicating quite clearly that she was threatening to speak to Nick.
She giggled again. He sat on
the bed, the notebook on his naked lap; the pen in one hand and the phone in
Mel came up behind him, put
her arms round his neck, and started nibbling his ear.
I’ll sort you out later, “
Mel giggled louder, and
Sorry about the background
noise,” Brakespeare said down the phone. “Now, where am I going?”
It was a fine June day. Jonny
Brakespeare was by now very tense. The traffic down the M5 motorway had been
too heavy, and from junction 7 into Worcester it had been stop-start motoring.
He had planned to arrive at
his new office at 8.30 a.m. and it was now 9.00am.
He remembered the symptoms of
stress from the old days; his stomach churned with anxiety, and there was a
tight band round his heart. His palms stuck to the plastic of the steering
His first job for a year, and
he was about to start with a black mark.
He drove the green Fiat Punto
into the roundabout by the Cathedral, and headed for the gates of College Yard,
where he been told he would find a parking space allocated to him.
As he drove between the entrance
pillars, a little man in an old, grey, ex-military great coat and a peaked cap,
suddenly appeared, and stood in the roadway, blocking his entrance and glaring
Brakespeare felt his heart
pound even more, and he took a deep breath as he pulled slowly to a halt.
The little man came round to
the driver’s window. Brakespeare wound it down and tried to appear calm.
"What you do here'?"
asked the little man aggressively in a thick mid European accent.
"My name is Brakespeare.
I have come to work at Mortimer Ridley, the solicitors over there." He
pointed vaguely to any of the doorways in College Yard. "I understand that
a parking space is reserved me. "
He paused; attack was always
the best form of defence. "Are you the parking attendant here?”
"Then you have not been
It was clear that the little
man had not been told. He could not have been told, so late had the
arrangements been made the night before. The man was now looking a little less
aggressive, and a little more uncertain. He shook his head as he looked at
Brakespeare Perhaps this man was important. Mortimer Ridley was a firm of
solicitors. Solicitors, he knew from his years in England, were important
people. He always touched the peak of his cap to Mr. Mortimer, Mr. Ridley and that
poor Mr Morrison.