The Firm (2012) s01e01 Episode Script

Pilot / Chapter Two

All right, everybody.
If you can't hear me, just gather in.
Now, this monument - Go around! Cut him off! Abby McDeere.
Abby! Mitch! Hey, what number are you calling me from? Abby, Code Red, you need to get out of there.
Code Red! What? Why? I can't explain.
They might be listening.
Who could be listening? What are you talking about? I promise you I will explain everything later, but right now you need to follow the emergency plan.
Remember what we said? Yes, you want me to go - Don't say it.
Just go.
Will you be there? As soon as I can.
I have to see somebody first - somebody who knows the truth.
Mitch! I know.
Abby it's happening again.
McDeere Martin.
Were you followed? No.
What's this? I was followed, but I lost them.
Thank you for coming.
I shouldn't be here.
Five minutes, that's what you said.
Then I'm gone.
This is my client.
You know who this is? No.
I think you do.
I think you know why I'm here.
You called my extension three times.
They know that.
Don't you think they know that? You came to see me at the office.
I'm sorry.
Sorry? You show up using my name, asking questions? Martin, a woman is dead.
Bottom line is the trail leads me to you and your company.
I want to know the truth! They'll kill me.
Hell, I'm already dead.
Let me protect you.
I know people, the FBI.
Do you have any idea how foolish you sound? I've done things.
Horrible things.
I've tried to live with them.
But I can't anymore.
I'm listening.
McDeere! Hotel security! Open the door, please.
No, it's not security.
Security would have a key.
I thought you said you lost them.
McDeere, open the door please! I can't help you.
C'mon, c'mon.
And you can't help me.
Front desk, can you hold please? Martin! What are you- Vrrroooom! This is my cake? Dad, you told me on my birthday I could have cake for breakfast.
And you can, that's a cake.
A pancake is a cake.
This isn't a courtroom, Dad.
I know.
Yeah, then how come I just got screwed on a technicality? It's 7am.
You can have all the cake you want tomorrow night at your birthday party.
Yeah, well, don't worry about it.
I'm not even sure I'm going.
Oh, I know; presents, cake, all your friends celebrating your very existence I wouldn't want any part of that either.
I'm serious.
Hey Claire, what's the problem? I'm still new at this school, you know.
It's been six months.
Six months is nothing.
I invited a lot of kids I don't know that well.
So? What if they don't come? It won't happen.
Hey, you're an amazing kid.
Why wouldn't they come? I don't know! Look, I try to be cool, I really do, but people don't give you the inside dirt when your mom's a teacher.
Inside dirt! You're ten, Claire.
What kind of dirt do you have when you're ten? I don't know, Mom, they won't tell me! I gotta run.
Hey, we need to talk.
You went through the books again last night, huh? It's not good, Mitch.
It's been six months and we can barely even pay for the office space.
According to Claire, six months is nothing.
You have eight clients, half of which still haven't even paid.
I hate to have to bring this up to you.
They will, they just don't have the money right now.
I have eight good clients, but one of those clients is Althea Sanderson, and she is a great client whose case is about to settle, guaranteed.
Guaranteed by who? By me.
Six figures by the end of the week.
I promise.
You miss me, Louis.
It's okay, you can admit it.
Nice place.
How's Abby? Claire causing trouble on her birthday? Always.
Mitch! Mitch, I'm Louis Coleman with the US Marshall's office.
This is Marshall Faraday.
Sorry boys, I gave at the office.
We need to talk to you.
Look, we just moved back from Memphis.
I helped you guys enough.
Talk to Tarrance.
You can talk to him yourself.
Tarrance is here in Boston? I got orders to take you to him.
Why? We can discuss that in the car.
I don't think- Ahh! Down! Get down! Get him in the car! Get us out of here! Oh my God, are you okay? It's okay.
I'm fine.
You should be dead.
Hello Mitch, Abby.
What happened was a hit.
We sent my people as soon as we heard.
We just got to you a little late.
You're saying there's a contract on me? Not just you, your family, Abby and Ray too.
Marshall Faraday is dead.
I need to you follow me.
The order came from Joey Morolto himself.
We have people inside who say there's paper with your names on it.
Then it's a mistake.
What I gave you incriminated the firm, Bendini, Lambert, and Locke only.
The firm was overbilling its clients.
We never implicated the mob.
Maybe not, but the overbilling allowed us to seize the building.
We found more than enough inside to take down the Moroltos.
They told me I was free and clear.
This is the mob, Mitch.
They deal in absolutes; base emotions: anger, revenge.
You set in motion a chain of events that could cripple them.
So what now? Well, obviously, you can't go home.
Your options are limited.
This is Marshall Coleman with the witness protection program.
We're out of here.
Come on, Abby.
Listen! You need to- I need to what, Tarrance, trust you? I guarantee that if there is a contract, that order went out before this morning.
Why weren't we told? We didn't know about the threat until a few hours ago.
If I learned anything in Memphis, it's that you are always the last to know.
That's not fair.
Mitch, hey, look.
We don't know each other, but you don't want to walk out of here.
We'll take our chances.
And do what? The hit's been commissioned.
You walk, we can't promise to protect you.
You know Tarrance, how come the only time I believe you is when you can't promise me something? Mitch, will you wait? We don't need protection, Abby.
We have come way too far.
We need to talk about this.
Look, I'll figure this out.
I just need time to think.
I need to tell you something.
We're okay.
Maybe I can reason with Morolto.
And Ray, he knows people.
Maybe he can get the contracts called off.
I can't run.
Yes you can! We can.
We did it before.
Mitch, I'm I'm pregnant.
Okay, we're listening.
We're not in the program anymore, Lewis.
I hate to break this to you, but I think it's time you start seeing other victims.
You left the program, that doesn't mean you're not in danger.
Come on, Mitch.
You really think you're safe? You're not.
I told you, Joey Morolto's- Joey Morolto's dead.
He died nine months ago in prison.
It's been ten years, Louis.
Denver, Scottsdale, Wichita.
My family wants its name back.
All my daughter's ever known is running.
It's over.
Why, because you say it is? Your kid was not the only one to have a birthday this week.
Know who that is? It's Joey Morolto Jr.
I didn't know the old man had a kid.
It's because he was 15 when his father went to prison.
Junior turned 25 this week.
His little birthday gift: they made him boss of the family.
Well then I am sure he has more to worry about than me.
I don't know, if it was me, the guy who sent my dad to prison for life - he'd be right at the top of my list.
I gotta go, I've got an arraignment.
Fathers and sons, Mitch.
Trust me, you mess with that bond, anything can happen.
Tell me we got an offer on Sanderson.
Not yet.
It's nice of you to show up though.
I've been calling.
Claire's birthday, I had to make her breakfast.
Judge Trott's going to have you for breakfast.
His clerk wanted you there at nine.
Why so early, the arraignment's not'til ten? She wouldn't say, but it sounded important.
I said you were on your way.
We are in trouble, Tammy.
I don't know.
I thought I could make this work, but we are running on fumes.
We need that settlent.
It'll happen, honey.
Not just for us, but Althea and her family.
I'm telling you, I'm on to something.
Althea Sanderson did not just have a heart attack.
The stent they implanted in her chest was defective.
Defective stent.
Those sons of bitches.
If I'm right, could be thousands of plaintiffs out there.
Could be the biggest tort case of the year.
Well then, they'll settle.
I'm sure the last thing they want is a trial.
Where's Ray? The other half of the brothers McDeere is in your office, where he's staying.
We're not speaking at the moment.
Should I even ask why? Oh, he knows why.
There he is, the hardest-working private investigator in the city.
You're gonna love this.
Want me to love something, Ray, bring me something on Sanderson - a witness, a suppressed document, anything.
Do some work.
First of all, there are no documents, if a stent's defective, a company like DC Tech knows better than to leave a paper trail.
For your information, I am working.
Got the video on your ludeness case.
Harry Deebs? Yeah, what a prize this guy is.
He exposes himself to some kids from St.
Augusta at the pizza place after school, and what's his defee? He said he had an allergic reaction to the cheese and pizza.
That's some reaction.
Come on! Really? I'll plead that one out.
So what's new with you and Tammy? Nothing new, same old fight.
She's upset because I didn't ask her to marry me.
When, today? Ever.
I told her,'hey, look,I go' You've been with the woman for more than ten years.
You went into witness protection together, Ray.
I love her.
I'm not going anywhere.
But the big'M'? It's not my thing.
All right.
I gotta go.
I gotta go to the pens.
I've got an arraignment in an half-hour.
Do some work.
Later, bro.
You're a defense lawyer? I'm your de fence lawyer, Sarah.
I'm Mitch McDeere.
The court appointed me as of last night.
Look I don't want to be rude, but why you? No reason.
The court has a list of local lawyers willing to take on murder cases.
I gess I was up next.
That oy? I can't pay you.
Don't worry about that.
The district pays me a discounted rate.
So you're a discount de fence lawyer? Yes.
Let me tell you what's gonna happen next, Sarah.
When you go out there, you will be charged with murder.
And the government will do everything in its power - it will stop at nothing - to put you away for the rest of your life.
That's who you are.
Me, I'm just a guy who knows first-hand what it's like when the government points its finger at you and makes up its mind.
So I put my name on a list and here I am.
Now, I have questions.
Questions like, why would a 27 year old insurance broker with a family, a one-bedroom apartment, and a chip on her shoulder kill a 71 year old woman in her sleep? I wouldn't.
I didn't.
There's no argument on the merits today.
The judge will hear me on bail - Will he let me go home? At least until the trial.
Not on a murder charge.
Let's just get through this, then we'll talk.
Okay? Mr.
McDeere Thank you.
McDeere, so nice of you to join us.
Only fifty minutes after I ordered you to.
I'm sorry Your Honor, it's my daughter's birthday.
Well, a gift for your daughter, I'll refrn from holding her father in contempt.
She's ten today, Judge.
I promise you she holds me in enough contempt for the both of you.
I just met with my client inside, and we are ready when you are.
Actually, Counsel, I wasn't calling about Miss Holt.
I was calling to assign you to a new defendant.
Step up, please.
Your Honor, with great respect, I would ask you not to do that.
I haven't told you what it is.
I know, it's just that I was just assigned a new homicide case last night and, to be honest, I don't have the bandwidth for another.
In other words, you're reserving that bandwidth for a fully-paying client? Yes.
Times a little tough, huh? I just started a practice of my own a few months ago.
Yes, and I'm very impressed with what I've seen so far.
That's why I thought of you specifically for this.
I tell you what.
You meet the client.
Afterwards, if you don't want the case, I'll assign it to somebody else, I promise.
Your Honor - That's the best deal you're gonna get, Counsel.
One meeting.
Let me know your decision.
Yes sir.
And where would I find this new client? We've just called the case into the record.
He's standing right there.
Danell, my name is Mitch McDeere, I'm an attorney.
First of all, are you okay? Are you hurt, or I want to talk to my dad.
Okay, I can arrange for that.
First we're gonna need to talk for a minute.
You're 14, is that right? So eighth grade? You go to Grover Cleveland Middle School? Danell, is that where this happened? I've got blood on my shirt.
I need a new shirt.
I'll get you a new one.
The police will take the one you have as evidence.
Danell, I think maybe I can help you, but in order to do that, wre gonna have to talk about what happened.
The police, they say you hurt one of your classmates.
He's dead.
That's right, Nathan Williams.
Did you know him? Were you friends? You knew him, but you weren't friends.
The knife, tell me about the knife.
Was it yours? We were fighting.
I didn't want to.
But I was walking home from school.
He was waiting.
Why? I didn't do anything, we were just talking.
I swear.
Who was talking? Me and Ann This girl in my class.
Nathan likes her and he told me to stay away from her.
But we were just talking.
Okay, so Nathan, he wanted to fight? He started pushing me.
Telling me things.
So I hit him.
And he had a knife.
So I took it from him and I stabbed him.
I stabbed him, man.
I didn't want to.
But he made me do it.
A girl? You mean to tell me he killed that boy 'cause they were fighting over a girl? He said it was a misunderstanding.
Danell didn't want to fight, but he was protecting himself.
Yeah, well, if it was self-defense, why'd they arrest him? Mr.
Heywood, can I ask you, does your son have a knife? A pocket knife? Ever seen him with one? No, and if he did, he knows not to let me catch him with it, I promise you.
I do what I can for that boy, but I can't ben him all the time.
I've been doing this alone most of his life.
So there had been problems? Yeah, some.
But overall, Danell's a good kid.
He just doesn't know what he is yet.
I know he ain't the smartest, or the best-looking, the toughest.
But kids now, there's no time to figure things out.
People need to know what to me of you.
And Danell's just a little lost.
Okay, so what happens now? There will be a hearing.
The Prosecution wants to try your son as an adult.
Can they do that? Legally, they can try.
It's my job to convince the court to treat him as a juvenile.
I'm not going to lie to you, sir, that decision is critical.
As a juvenile, the Court's goal is to rehabilitate a child.
With an adult, it's to punish a criminal.
And on a murder charge, he could get life.
Counselor, the arraignment's up.
Judge wants you back.
McDeere, can you help my son? I'll try.
However, my brother, y, he's a private investigator.
He'll get started right away.
Docket ending 9-2-2, People vs.
Sarah Holt.
The defendant is charged with murder.
Diane Ruckheiser for the People.
Good morning, Youronor.
Ah, Miss Ruckheiser, bright and shiny, as always.
Before we begin, Mr.
McDeere, I take it you spoke to our young Mr.
Heywood? I did, Your Honor.
And? I'm in.
So shines a good deed in a weary world.
Heywood, you're a very lucky man, sir.
You'll find a lot of good human beings in this courthouse, and a lot of very talented lawyers.
What you won't find, are many people who are both.
You've got one here in Mr.
Trust his advice.
So dude, I've known you for, what, three months now.
About that.
Three months, you never miss a weekend.
The one Sunday you don't show up, the best pick-up game of the season.
Five lawyers, okay; Me, Donny, Phil- Phil, the guy with the inhaler? Yeah, him, and the Monzuski bthers.
So the five of us, we take on the entire Redding high school varsity team that came to the park to practice.
Buy, we lost by 46 points.
Because you have no game.
This is what I'm saying, man.
You can't just join a basket ball league and then bail, okay? I know, I know.
Thing is, I've been busy.
Turns out it's not so easy to start your own firm.
What about you? I could make a car payment for the price of this scotch.
Business is good, huh? It is.
Actually, that's why I arranged this little meeting.
Now, I'm not sure what you know about my firm.
It's called Kinross and Clark.
Small shop.
Sixty lawyers.
What kind of work? All civil, all high-level.
Corporate litigation, bankruptcy, tax, IP.
We handle strictly blue chips, we're a one-stop shop for whatever they need.
Except Except? Except for criminal.
I mean, these days, someone we represent is always in trouble with somebody, SCC, IRS, US Attorney And you're coming to me? 'Til now, I've been farming those cases out.
My partners think maybe it's time to start a criminal division in-house.
And I've been asking around and you've made quite an impression in just a few months.
Come on.
I'd rather give the spot to a friend.
Yeah, I don't think so, Andy.
Why not? I just went out on my own.
I'm not really looking to join a firm.
And I respect that.
But we're a good group.
At least come see the place.
You can't just drink my scotch, dis my game, and then pass.
Come on, what do you say? Hey, you can't do that.
No reporters allowed.
Supposed to send you guys all to the office.
Seriously? I just need one good shot.
I gotta get my story in by 5.
Can't help you there, chief.
As it is, I'm lucky I still got a job after what happened.
Yeah, okay.
Ray McDeere.
Manny Reyes.
'63? The year I was born.
They believe that? At the school, I mean.
I assume that's what you told them to get the job.
But we both know that's not true.
up in Riverside Heights, also the name of a street gang runs the area.
I did some time at.
I knew a lot of good men with that tat.
Yeah, I left that life behind a long time ago.
What'd you go in for? Manslaughter.
Guy deserve it? Hell yeah.
Doesn't mean I don't regret it.
Stuff happens when you're young and stupid.
I heard that.
So you're not a reporter? No, I'm a private investigator for the defense.
Any chance you can tell me what happened? Truth is, I didn't see it go down.
I was over at the food truck, grabbing a coffee.
When I turned around, they were already running.
Who was running? Both of them.
Danell Heywood, the one they arrested, and Tommy Breene.
Two kids, you sure? Course I'm sure.
You see the same kids every day.
I turned just in time to see Nathan fall.
Those two, they took off like a shot.
Manny, thank you.
Two kids? Yeah.
His name's Thomas Breene.
Same age and grade as your client.
You talk to him? I tried.
He only lives a few blocks from the school, so I walked over to his house.
How'd you get the address? Let's just say the school security guy and I bonded.
I talked to Tommy Breene's father.
He said that the US Attorney warned him that someone from the defense might come by.
So the prosecution knows he exists.
I asked for an interview, the father refused.
Gave some stupid speech about his legalrights.
Took a lot of self-control not to hit him.
Question is, if they were both running, why wasn't he arrested with Danell? They must be using him as a witness.
Bottom line, brother, question is: why'd your 14 year old client lie to you? I don't know.
He didn't tell me about Breene, there must be a reason.
We got a problem.
First, that conversation was 42 minutes; I'm not equipped to go that long without a cigarette.
Second, that was the vice principal over at Cleveland Middle.
He gave me the history on Danell Heywood.
He's 14 years old, how much history can he have? Oh, this boy's got a file.
No serious violence, but he's got issues.
Who doesn't? He's barely passing his classes, profanity, threats to students, last year he threw a social studies book at a female teacher.
What about the victim? Nathan Williams, good student, good kid, maybe not an angel, but from what I hear, everybody loved him and the VP called hisdeat.
Look, I met with Danell Heywood.
He looked me right in the eye and told me it was self defense.
Well, then, maybe it was.
Or maybe this kid is sharper than I gave him credit for.
Let me explain something, Danell.
I'm a defense attorney.
That means I'm here to defend you.
I know.
No, I don't think you do, because if you did you'd be helping me, not lying to me.
You said this was a fight.
Just you and Nathan in the yard.
What'd you think, I'd just take your word for it? I wouldn't even check that out? It's true.
No, it's not true.
I know about Tommy Breene.
I know he was there.
He's a witness against you.
So you tell me, when the prosecutor puts him on the stand, how am I supposed to defend you when I have no idea what he's going to say? I didn't catch that.
I said I didn't think he would say anything.
Everybody deserves a defense, Danell.
And I ll defend you at this hearing tomorrow, but in order to do that, I need to know what I am walking into.
I wasn't fighting Nathan.
Nathan had nothing to do with this.
Then why is Nathan dead? Tommy and I got into it after school.
He was pushing me.
Nathan, he just happened to see it jump off and had to get involved.
Involved how? Well, he pulled me off Tommy, told me to leave him alone.
I told him to mind his damn business.
But he wouldn't.
He told me he was making it his business.
So The knife.
Was yours, wasn't it.
I warned him.
But Nathan had to be Nathan.
And that kid was supposed to be smart.
Look how smart he was.
Hey Mom, if you had a dollar, and you had to divide it between all of your friends, would you want a hundred pennies or a single bill? Why? 's a game, just go with it.
I don't know.
I guess I'll take four quarters.
It's a choice, Mom, you have to ke the pennies, or the dollar.
Well, it's ridiculous, I n't want only one friend, but I don't need a hundred either.
I want four.
Yeah, well, I'd take the pennies.
I think I want to be a people person.
Okay, people person.
Books away, dinner's ready.
I'll go tell your dad.
Tell me we got the settlement offer on Sanderson.
Not yet.
How's it going? Worried about the hearing tomorrow? I have represented a lot of guilty clients, but never anybody this young, Abby.
If it helps, there's a lot of new research for teachers saying that teenage brains are undeveloped.
I've got it.
An immature pre-frontal cortex.
Some say it lowers impulse control, judgement, risk assessments But you're not buying it? Honestly, Danell Heywood stabbed his classmate in the neck with a pocketknife.
It didn't happen because his brain is undercooked.
Maybe not.
So what happens now? No matter what problems he has, Mitch, they're not going to get better in the adult system.
You know that.
So every kid is redeemable, you truly believe that? Yes.
And so do you.
The worst part is, to make their case, the prosecution has to put Tommy Breene on the stand.
So? So, to do my job, I have to destroy a 14 year old who is telling the truth.
It was just supposed to be a joke.
A way for me to get back at Danell.
And when you say Danell, who exactly do you mean? Danell Heywood, he's sitting right there.
May the record reflect that the witness has identified the defendant, Danell Heywood.
And Thomas, how do you know Danell? Is he a friend of yours? No, we're in the same class, but I'm not really cool enough to be his friend.
He pretty much only knows who I am because it's his mission in life to harass me.
The witness can characterizeis relationship with the defendant.
The witness can do that without making sarcastic comments about my client's mission in life.
Objection sustained.
Thomas, you said you were trying to get back at Danell.
Please tell us what you mean.
We read this book in English, Native Son.
We all had to read it and write an essay about it.
A few days before, I heard Danell say in the hall how he really liked it.
And how it was the first book he ever wanted to read.
Go on.
The day we got our assays back, Dannell got his* and I saw his face.
He never gets good grades, but usually doesn't care.
This time he was mad.
When class ended, he crumpled it up and threw it away.
And what did you do? I got it from the garbage and it's stupid, I know but I put it on the bulletin board in the hall.
He got an F.
Everyone was laughing, but I didn't think anyone knew it was me.
Then, when I left school, Danell was waiting.
What did he do? He didn't say much.
He just started hitting me.
Then I was on the ground.
He was kicking me.
That's when Nathan came.
Nathan Williams, he was also in your class? Yeah.
Nathan pulled him off me and told Danell to stop.
Then I could hear them yelling.
And then Danell had a knife.
I saw him stab Nathan.
Then he ran.
No further questions.
You hated Danell, didn't you, Tommy? Come on, you weren't cool enough to be his friend, and you resented that, so you wanted to humiliate him.
That's why you posted the essay, to get revenge.
Does Counsel have a question? Here's my question.
How much did you hate him, Tommy? How much do you hate him now? Enough to lie to this court? I'm telling the truth.
The truth is, you were on the ground when Nathan attacked my client.
There's no testimony saying the defendant was attacked.
The testimony is unclear, Your Honor.
That's my point.
You said Danell was kicking you, correct? Yeah.
So you were covering up, weren't you.
Using your arms to protect your head and body.
I guess.
So you never saw what happened.
I heard Nathan come over.
He told Danell to stop.
Heard Nathan, I understood that.
I also understood you heard someone say the word stop.
It was Nathan.
What did he say Tommy? What were his exact words? You don't know.
The truth is, Nathan's the one who threatened my client.
I never heard that.
Doesn't mean it didn't happen.
Objection, argumentative.
What about the knife, Tommy? You say you looked up just in time to see Danell stab Nathan? That's right.
But you never saw him pull that knife, did you? Because the fact is, Nathan's the one who pulled the knife.
Nathan's the one who took a simple fight and turned it into a deadly encounter.
No! Objection! And my client was lucky enough to grab that knife and use it in self-defense.
Your Honor, this is outrageous.
Outrageous? The People are seeking to treat my client - a 14 year old boy - as an adult.
Because this was an adult act of violence.
This is a child, Your Honor.
If he created the situation, if he sought it out because he wanted to kill or he enjoyed it, then they might have an argument.
He was beating a classmate.
He was responding to a public act of humiliation.
And this so-called murder was in self-defense.
That's crap, Your Honor.
Nathan Williams is the victim here.
His parents are here in the courtroom and they deserve better.
My client's father is also here in the courtroom and he deserves - All right.
That's enough, Counselor, you've made your point.
On the status of the defendant, you'll have my decision in a few days.
In the meantime, on the issue of bail- The People request that decision be deferred, Your Honor.
There's no reason to defer.
Heywood is here and capable of taking full responsibility.
Your Honor, please! This is a murder charge.
And you'll have your day in court.
But I won't hold the defendant like an adult until I've decided whether or not he is one.
The defendant's released into the custody of his father.
Thank you, Your Honor.
Shame on you, Mr.
Karen, let's not.
You didn't know my son.
Williams, I'm an attorney.
Aefense attorney.
No, an attorney argues facts.
He doesn't say whatever needs to be said so his client goes free.
Come on.
Let's not do this.
Let go of me.
Nathan was a beautiful boy.
He was good.
He died trying to help someone.
But you don't care.
Williams, I'm so sorry for your loss.
No, don't you tell me you're sorry.
What if it was your child? Hey, thanks for coming.
Mom, this one's from Julia Heeney.
Julia, got it.
They came, Mom.
Everyone I invited.
This This is huge.
Hey guys, having a good time? Whatcha got there? Native Son? Classic, but a little heavy for a ten year old's birthday party.
You know it? I taught it.
Not for a while, but it was required reading in my school in Boston.
Why? Danell Heywood, made quite an impression.
It's the only book he ever wanted to read.
Well, it's about growing up poor and black in 1930s Chicago.
So I guess he could relate to the journey.
The journey and now the ending.
The lead character can't esce his circumstances.
He ends up going to prison for murder.
Little heavy for a birthday party.
Come on, I could use your help with the cake.
Hey, everything okay? Yeah, yeah, fine.
Okay, well, come on.
Make a wish, sweetheart.
You know, I don't think I have ever seen Claire so happy.
Makes no sense.
How did two of the most independent people on the planet give birth to such a joiner? Speaking of which, I was going to tell you before, but I knew what you'd say.
Uh oh, it's never the start of a good conversation.
It's not a big deal.
Lemme guess, it's about that firm? The one you looked up on the computer? You saw that? I teach fifth-graders, babe.
You don't move half as fast as they do.
Like I said, it's not a big deal.
I ran into this guy at the courthouse.
Name's Andrew Palmer.
We play basketball together sometimes.
He works for that firm? It's calle Kinross and Clark.
Sixty lawyers, all high-end civil cases.
The partners want to start a criminal division in-house.
He offered me the job.
And you turned them down? Yes.
But I promised him I would think about it.
And he said we should come in and see the office.
I knew you wouldn't like the idea, Abby.
We just started a firm.
Your own firm.
I told him that.
But you're telling me because there's something about it that interests you.
What? Mitch, you're not built for those firms.
Firms are for people with a pack mentality.
I get that.
Then help me understand.
Why would you want to be a part of that? I don't know.
Maybe it's because I never was.
Maybe it's because I'm the son of a coal miner and a waitress, not a bank president and a socialite like you.
So you need to be around entitled people to make yourself feel worthy? It's not about worth.
Then what? It's about potential.
It's about being someone.
It's about being relevant.
I graduated top of my class at Harvard.
I wanted things.
I wanted to do things that mattered.
I wanted to make law that mattered.
That got taken away from me.
It got taken away from us.
You can do that on your own.
And I will.
It's just a part of me- A part of me still wonders.
Hello? Hey Tammy, can I call you back? We're in the middle of something.
Okay Calm down.
Calm down.
No, no, no, just keep him there.
I'll come in.
Tammy's still at the office? Yeah, she never left.
She said there's someone I need to see.
Someone I need to talk to now.
You okay? I was here with Ray, and I've been trying to stay angry at him, but God knows I can't stay angry at that boy.
We were making up and he just walks in the front door.
Where is he? He's in your office Don't worry, Ray's watching him.
But I said, "you need to make an appointment", and he goes, "no!" He had to talk to you right away.
He bro, sorry to call, but you need to hear this for yourself.
Derek Little, Mitch McDeere.
Hey Derek, tell him what you just told me.
You're McDeere? Danell Heywood's lawyer? This is about Danell? Derek works for Gallway Supply, it's a small construction company owned by Richard Williams.
Nathan's father? Yeah.
Williams came to see me today.
Told me about his kid getting killed and how you twisted things.
Look, Derek, I don't know what you're doing here- Said the kid who did it was gonna walk.
Judge just let him go or something.
He's takin' it hard.
I understand that, but- No, I don't think you do.
He offered me $10,000 to kill your client.
When did this happen? A few hours ago.
Why did he come to you? Because some people are uncomfortable around violence.
I don't happen to be one of those people.
I've done some things.
He knows that.
So then why did you come to me? Because I had to do something.
Look, I like the man, he's been good to me.
So I'm sure as hell not going to the police.
But every man draws his own line and mine is this.
I don't kill kids.
Good line.
I think so.
Problem is, not everyone shares my moral values.
If I don't do it, he'll find someone who will.
And you thought he was serious.
I'm here, aren't I? I talked to the man, I looked in his eyes.
It won't be over for him until Danell Heywood is dead.
Richard Williams hired a hitman? He's not a hitman, he's an employee.
A construction worker.
A construction worker open to killing people.
He just prefers they be old enough to vote.
He doesn't kill kids.
Heartwarming, right? That's crazy.
Richard Williams is 43 years old, runs his own business, got a wife and a daughter- An eight year old daughter.
A lot of guys from where he came from, his age, been arrested half-dozen times.
He's got no criminal record.
Meaning what, you don't think he would go through with it? Meaning I think he's a good man.
If I hadn't got Danell released, I don't even think he'd consider it.
Hey, you didn't drive him to this.
You had a legal obligation to defend your client and I don't need to tell you that.
Can I smoke in here? No! Okay, the question is, what are we dealing with? A serious threat, or an angry father who just shot off his mouth in a moment of rage? How can we know that? We can't.
Maybe we can.
Derek told Richard he needed more time to decide.
They're meeting tomorrow.
So? So maybe we keep the meeting.
Maybe Derek won't do it, but he recommends somebody that will.
Oh, and because I'm the only one here with a manslaughter conviction and prison time, you automatically think of me.
Just kiddin', bro.
I think it's a briiant idea.
But can we really do that? Damn right.
Richard Williams is a decent guy.
We cannot go to the cops until we know that he's for real.
What's going on? Um, nothing.
It's late.
You need something? No No, you cannot do this to me again! I got her.
Hey, you want to tell me what that was all about? I'm not stupid, Dad.
I know wt's going on.
All four of you? Whispering in the kitchen in the middle of the night? I've seen it before.
We're leaving, aren't we.
No, nobody's leaving.
We just got here.
And you know what? I finally have friends.
Okay, first of all, you have always had friends.
And second of all, if you will just take two seconds and breathe, you'll be extremely relieved because we are not leaving.
This is our home, that's not changing.
We were discussing a problem that I am having at work.
You promise? I promise.
We are done running, okay? Can you hear me? Affirmative.
You broke up a little on that.
Damn, hang on.
This isn't my equipment.
I traded a guy for a couple designer suit knock-offs.
Where did you get-? Know what? Don't even tell me.
He's here, Ray.
You sure you can handle this? Yeah.
You're Derek's friend, the one who called? Look, I told you I prefer to meet at the office.
This is my office.
Derek told me about the work you wanted done.
He's not up to it, but he thought maybe we could help each other.
Can you do it? I don't know you Mr.
Williams, but from what I've heard, you're a decent guy.
Before we continue this conversation, we both say things we can't take back.
This thing you want done, walk away.
I can't do that.
Yes, you can, my friend.
Your son's case isn't over, let the system- To hell with the system.
Derek says you have a family that nes you.
You want to know about my family? I got up today and sent my daughter to school, the same school where my son was killed.
My daughter walks the yard where he died everyday.
And the boy that killed him got sent home like it never happened.
I just think- I don't give a damn what you think.
If you can't help me, fine.
I'll find someone else who can.
He cannoleave, Ra He has to say it.
You cannot let him go! Okay, hey! Take it easy.
I'll do it.
How do you want it done? With a knife.
You kill him the same way he killed Nathan.
Deal was ten grand.
You'll get it.
Here, same time tomorrow.
Get all that, bro? Yeah, well, I guess we know he's for real.
So what now? Uh, I dunno.
I've got a meeting downtown.
I'll call you when I get out.
How do you want it done? With a knife.
You kill him the same way he killed Nathan.
Deal was ten grand.
You'll get it.
Here, same time tomorrow.
You have to go to the police.
Mitch, you heard him.
That man is unstable.
What if he does it? What if people find out we knew? They won't.
Look, he's not killing anyone.
He thinks he made a deal with Ray.
We have until tomorrow to figure this out.
What does Ray think? I don't know.
I said we'd talk later.
Did you tell him why? I said I had a meeting downtown.
I didn't want to get into it.
Because you knew he wouldn't approve.
It's just a meeting, Abby.
I understand, which is why I'll go.
And I will even smile because I love you.
Mitch, how are you? And you must be Abby.
Well, look at this place.
This is really beautiful.
Let me guess, you were expecting more mahogany and marble? I think so.
You know, shadows and leather and at least one gargoyle.
We were a little scarred by our last firm experience.
Well, I tried to tell you this place is different.
Come on, let me give you a tour.
So it was built for us about 8 years ago.
It's not exactly Google, but we try to be progressive.
Our managing partner wanted to bring a little of that tech inspiration to the legal world.
Smart guy.
Alex Clark, she runs our corporate litigation team.
She? Brilliant woman.
You know that saying, "This is not your father's law firm"? Actually, it is.
We've got the soul of a family firm, but Alex, she really took us to the next level.
We're not happy practicing law, and we do that in every area but criminal.
That's why you're here, buddy.
And this would be your office.
Look, honey, it's exactly like your office now.
How many lawyers do you have? Sixty.
Only fifteen partners, Mitch'd make it sixteen.
Oh, come on, we're having a small reception for a few clients.
I'lintroduce you.
Mitch and Abby McDeere this is Alex Clark.
Of course, no introduction necessary.
I know we haven't met, but after Andrew's report, I feel like I know everything about you.
Really? Don't worry, it was all glowing.
And Abby, welcome.
So nice to meet you.
You know, I heard you had one hell of a hearing today.
Your case with the boy who was killed.
Word is you can cross with the best.
Well Don't be modest.
You know, I consider it a point of pride that I've never tried a case in front of a jury.
Is that true? Juries love facts, whereas I find facts often get in the way of a complete winning argument.
Control is key in my business, Mitch.
My corporate clients pay me to avoid the courtroom at all costs.
And the costs are considerable.
True, but I think they'll tell you they always get their money's worth.
So, Mitch, I wanted to ask about your practice.
Andrew says yo were once a money guy - bankruptcy law, tax - we could use you.
I considered it.
Actually, I did do some tax work for a while.
But it wasn't my thing.
And what particular thing wasn't your thing? I don't know, waking up in the morning, helping billionaires beat the tax code.
That kind of thing.
Ah, I see, you're a moalist.
So instead, you spend your day defending criminals.
I spend my day making sure no man's freedom or future is taken from him unjustly.
We both defend criminals, Brad.
The difference is I'll admit it to anyone, you won't even admit it to yourself.
Excuse me.
It's late.
We've got to figure out what to do about Richard Williams.
Did you call Ray? Yeah, he and Tammy are on their way.
You know, I have to say, it could have been a lot worse.
They seem like nice people.
Yeah, a bunch of control freaks, tax fraud artists.
Hey, you asked for it.
The big players have big personalities.
That's not what I want, Abby.
Really, so that office didn't speak to you at all? That was a terble office.
Unsightly, even.
I just hope we can make this work on our own.
We will.
You love this house.
If we don't make some money soon, then Downsize.
I followed you into witness protection, so don't start acting like I am high maintenance.
No, Mrs.
McDeere, you're exactly the right amount of maintenance.
Come on, it's just dinner.
You gotta eat, don'tcha? I have to study, Joey.
So do I.
Look, we'll put our books on the table, no talking.
I got nothin' to say to you anyway.
Is he gonna be there? In the building, yes.
At the table, no.
Morolto Why do I get the feeling you're not a typical night student? Just one second.
No business when I'm at school.
Sorry Mr.
Morolto, but you need to see this right away.
It's definitely McDeere.
Our people say he surfaced in DC a few months ago.
It's time we got payback for what he did to your father.
You okay? Yeah, yeah.
Tell me three things about the file you're reading.
It's a murder case.
Woman's name Sarah Holt.
I'm supposed to be preparing her defense.
But you're still thinking about Richard Williams.
That tape destroys him, Abby.
He has no defense.
If we take it to the police- We talked about this last night.
It's not just solicitation.
If he shows up with the money today, it's an overt act.
They could charge him with conspiracy.
We would be sending him to prison for at least a few years.
Hey, we are not sending him to prison.
He is trying to kill a 14 year old boy.
A boy who could still be declared an adult.
The judge hasn't even made his decision.
There has to be another way to handle it.
I just can't see it yet.
If you don't report it and something happens to Danell, could you live with yourself? No.
Could you be prosecuted? Technically, I wouldn't be an accessory, but If the truth came out, at the very least, I'd be disbarred.
Hello? It's here.
That offer you've been waiting for, it just walked in.
On Sanderson? There's a lawyer here from DC Tech.
He came to delir it in person.
That's a good sign, right? Probably too much money to send in the mail.
Just keep him there, I'll be right there.
The offer on Sanderson's in.
You want to come with me? Do you think it's good? Mitch McDeere.
John Bolson.
Thank you for coming, we've been expecting an offer, but I didn't think DC Te would send somebody down in person.
I don't work for DC Tech.
Miss Sanderson's case is no longer being handled by in-house counsel.
I'm with Cromwell and Taft, maybe you know us? Cromwell and Taft, that's the biggest law firm in DC.
Second largest in the country, but you know, who's counting.
My firm was retained to handle the trial.
That's assuming there is a trial.
I was under the impression that you came down in order to offer a settlement.
That's true.
So let's talk in my office.
That won't be necessary.
I work for Morgan Vance.
Vance is our managing partner, and he runs corporate litigation for the office.
He sent me to personally explain our offer.
This morning Mr.
Vance was instructed by DC Tech to draft you a letter stating the company has no intention of settling this case.
To the contrary, we fully intend to try the matter.
Then why are you here? Mr.
Vance wanted me to tell you that he bills DC Tech at the rate of $800 per hour.
He felt that it would take about 1 hour to draft the letter I mentioned.
He'd rather not.
Instead, he's offering you the 800, as a courtesy, in full satisfaction of your frivolous case.
You should leave now.
It'd be a great mistake to pursue this.
I assure you, Mr.
Bolson, a mistake would be underestimating what I am capable of.
What we are capable of.
We have over 120 lawyers in DC alone.
Last year we billed over $36 Million in a dozen complex tort litigations.
The simple fact is this is what we do.
Now you, you are an office of one lawyer, and, as far as I can find, you haven't handled a case that's made so much as the local pennysaver in the last ten years.
I'fight you on this.
No, I don't think you will.
Why not? Because I'm standing in an office that six months ago was being used as a travel agency.
You have a good day.
Eight hundred dollars? Should be eight hundred thousand.
How can DC Tech not settle? If that stent is defective- That stent is defective.
Althea Sanderson was almost killed by a defect in a cardiac stent designed to by DC Tech.
She is not alone.
Others may have already died.
Then why risk a trial? It doesn't make sense.
If we convince a jury, that creates a precedent.
They're looking at hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.
And if they pay us off, they look guilty.
It's like admitting to the entire legal world they've got something to hide.
I need time to think.
He's right, Abby.
Lawsuits take money.
We need experts, research.
The discovery alone could take a year.
We can't even afford our own office.
Then we'll figure something out.
Cromwellnd Taft.
I graduated fifth in my class.
There were four people ahead of me.
Two of them went to Cromwell and Taft.
So what, we just give up? Give up? No, I don't want to give up, I want to grind those smug sons of bitches into ground glass.
Then let's do it.
We need lawyers, resources, the kind of backing only a major firm can provide.
You're talking about Andrew.
If that's what you want, you know I won't stop you.
Give me a chance to make this work.
I have an idea.
Hey bro, where you going? I'll be back.
No, you can't leave, we're supposed to meet Williams in an hour.
I'll meet you there! Well, well, Mr.
I'm so pleased our little shindig didn't scare you off.
Not at all.
Andrew tells me that you'reinte.
How wonderful.
I've always wanted a criminal division in the firm.
Mitch does have a few ideas out how the relationship would work.
I thought you two should talk directly.
First of all, let me say I appreciate your coming to me.
I asked around about your firm.
What do you want, Mitch? You love us, we love you.
I think we're done blowing smoke at this point, don't you? I just started my own firm.
I'm aware of that.
Our firm will acquire your practice and move you in-house.
Yes, but what if I don't want to be moved in-house? What if I want to maintain my own office and staff? Not an option.
Well then I've wasted your time because it's the only option I'll consider.
I'm not looking to be folded into your firm, Miss Clark, I'm looking for an association.
You provide me your resources, I'll give you a piece of my business.
We project an image here, Mitch.
One our clients have come to expect.
Meaning? Meaning our lawyers don't do business out of storefronts with linoleum floors.
Fair enough.
You give me the space, I'll meet clients here, but my office stays open.
And your cases? What exactly would we be inheriting? I thought we were done blowing smoke.
Look, I'm a good Iwyer.
On my best day, maybe even better than good.
This city is filled with good lawyers.
I know why I'm here.
Enlighten me.
Althea Sanderson? That case is a winner.
Handled correctly, it could be the biggest tort case of the year.
Maybe even the next few years.
So So, we want sixty percent.
Forget it.
I found the case, my team did the ground work.
And that's all you can do.
We both know you can't take this case to trial without our firm.
I'll give you forty percent.
Then we really are done here.
You were wrong Andrew, he's not ready.
Let me be clear.
If I agree to your terms, you repot to me on all of your cases.
I'm your boss from this day forward.
Your firm just became associated with the best litigation house in town.
Andrew will send the papers.
Mitch can you hear me? You decided to show.
I assume this means we have a deal.
Sorry bro, I'm here.
Stick with the plan.
Got the money? You realize once I take that- We've been over this.
Do we have a deal or not? No.
Hey, hey! It's over, Mr.
How do you want it done? With a knife.
You kill him the same way he killed Nathan.
The deal was ten grand.
You'll get it.
Here, same time tomorrow.
What was I supposed to do? The judge just let that boy go home.
It wasn't over.
There's still a chance Danell could be tried as an adult.
Yeah, well I wasn't gonna take that chance.
So you just threw everything away.
We tried to help you.
We begged you to let it go and trust the system.
And nothing happened.
I didn hurt anyone.
Doesn't matter.
You conspired to commit murder.
That charge alone carries a maximum sentence of 25 years.
You could help me.
No, not without risking my career or possibly being arrested.
Just listen.
I made a mistake.
But it's done.
Nobody has to know about that recording.
Nobody needs to know this happened.
I see.
So now you want me to twist the truth.
Now you want me to decide what did or didn't happen.
My family.
You should have thought about them before.
I don't expect you to understand.
My wife won't get out of bed.
My daughter won't eat.
She has these dreams about Nathan.
I didn't do this because I forgot to think about my family, Mr.
I did this because they're all I think about.
Mitch McDeere.
Thank you.
Judge Trotter's reached aecision on Danell Heywood.
He wants everyone in court.
When? Now.
Are we gonna win? I don't know.
Whatever happens, Danell, we still have a trial to get through.
I don't have kids.
And in a case like this, I find myself grateful.
Grateful that I can only imagine what it must be like to stand here, having lost a child.
Or knowing that my child could be lost to a criminal system from which some never return.
Let me be clear.
This was a shocking crime of great violence.
Heywood, with both malice and forethought, went looking for a fight that afternoon.
And he did this, I believe, while carrying a weapon, a knife.
Now head that knife because he thought he might need it.
He thought he might use it.
And he did use it.
Without hesitation, and to brutal effect.
It's hard to think of a more adult act.
That said, the situation was not entirely of Mr.
Heywood's making.
He was, on some level, responding to a very real humiliation.
And he lashed out, much as you might expect from a child.
So what now? The truth is, I want to believe in Mr.
I want to believe that he hasn't gone from us.
That there remains something in him worth trying to save.
That he may benefit from something more than the punishment that awaits him in the adult system.
But it's not that easy.
In fact, it's incredibly hard because I don't know how to value Danell Heywood's life without devaluing Nathan Williams' death.
To Nathan's parents, I can only pray tha you understand how deeply this court respects your loss.
But I've made my decision, and it is one of hope.
Hope that one day this young boy will be even a fraction of the man that your son alrdy was.
This court rules Danell Heywood to be a juvenile offender.
We are adjourned.
Diane Congratulations.
I can live with losing; hope you can live with winning.
We need to talk.
About what? Even if he's found delinquent now, he'll be out in less than five years.
Diane, I need your help.
Richard Williams? Richard, who's at the door? It's nothing.
Someone from work.
Sir, I need you to come with us.
I have to run to the office, babe.
Won't be long.
Williams, I understand you were just given a chance to speak with Mr.
Clay is a defense attorney.
You understand that my office has arranged for him to represent you at this meeting.
And that's acceptable to you? Yes.
Before we begin, I need to know that Danell Heywood is safe.
If you've made any other attempt- No.
He's under our protection as we speak, but if you've approached any other individual- I didn't.
Let me say my client deeply regrets his behavior, and he's willing to cooperate in any way he can.
Fine, he can sign a confession and plead guilty to the charge.
Excuse me? This is the official complaint.
It charges your client with conspiracy to commit murder.
This document is a plea reement.
You need to sign it.
Now wait a second! No deals, he pleads to the top count.
He also needs to write a full confession.
Diane, what the hell is going on here? You called me, I thought you wanted to talk.
We are talking.
Then this meeting is over.
Sit down, Henry.
Diane and I have been working to find the best possible solution, and I think we've found it.
What, by making him plead to the top count? Hear her out.
Williams, if you walk out that door, you will go to prison.
I can promise you that.
Assuming my client does what you ask, what happens then? I file the complaint and the plea agreement in my bottom drawer.
You're not going to charge him? Not for now.
Williams, you and I are going to have a standing appointment.
You will come to my office every week for as long as I say.
Why? So you never forget, not for one second, that I'm watching you.
You can tell me about your family, your daughter, I don't know what we'll talk about, but you will come see me every week.
And let me be clear.
If you do anything to make me nervous, if ou so much as jaywalk, I will file that complaint and your confession and I will put you away for a very long time.
Do you understand? Yes.
Thank you, Diane.
Don't thank me, Henry.
Mitch is the one who pushed for this.
He convinced me that you deserve another chance.
Williams, do not make me sorry.
You Sign the papers, Mr.
Go home to your family.
* Not officially.
Diane took a risk.
? The deal she made, if legal, is just right on the edge, but if she went public, it'd end her career.
So how'd you convince her? Well, she's got three kids of her own, so knows what it would mean for them to lose their father.
Well, as long as we're on the subject of secret deals, maybe you can explain this.
It came for you about an hour ago.
It'got about a dozen files and it came with this handwritten letter from one Ms.
Alex Clark.
It reads, "Dear Mitch, welcome aboard".
Two exclamation points.
"On behalf of the firm, let us say how excited we all are to have a new partner.
Two more exclamation points.
Yeah about that.
You joined a firm.
You didn't think that was something Tammy and I should know about? I didn't just join a firm.
I didn't join anything.
It's an association.
It says partner.
Does it not say partner? Technically, yes, it is a partnership.
But nothing changes for us, guys.
I can't work for a firm.
Neither can I.
Nobody has to work for a firm.
We keep our own office, our own staff.
It's just an association with Kinross and Clark.
Otherwise we'd have to give up this place.
You guys got a better idea? I'm all ears.
What does Abby say? Abby's on board.
I admit, I wasn't at first, but I'm comin' around.
Well, I'm telling you now, I'm not kissing any asses.
Fair enough.
And we're going to talk more about this later.
Ray? You know me, bro.
I always got your back.
You ready to go? Yeah.
I just gotta make a quick stop on the way.
Hey I want you to know something.
I love you guys.
With three exclamation points.
McDeere, I didn't know you were coming.
Caroline, how is your mother doing? She's still fighting.
So are we.
You're not welcome here.
Williams I asked them to come.
Beloved friends.
We are gathered here to honor the memory of Nathan Williams All right, let's get started.
We only have a few minutes until our client arrives.
Well, I have good news.
Toy we welcomed our sixteenth partner, Mitch McDeere.
Went just as we planned, almost.
Almost? We offered an in-house position, he preferred to create an association.
That's not what we talked about.
That's all McDeere would accept.
Bottom line: his office is now the criminal division of this firm and that is what we talked about.
Does he know why we made him an offer? No, he thinks we want a piece of tort case he found, a client by the name of Althea Sanderson.
I took a look.
It's actually a mn good case, and thanks to Alex, we now own fifty rcent.
Consider it a bonus.
Of course, our real interest here hasn't changed.
Sarah Holt.
She was officially charged with murder this week.
Of course, ideally we would have known about this sooner, but by the time we learned of her arrest, the court had already assigned the case to McDeere.
Obviously our priority here is control.
Now McDeere reports to us.
How far has he gotten? Not that far.
But now that he's ours, we can start to install our own phones, our own copy machines, even our own computers in his office.
Shouldn't stop there.
He should be under surveillance.
I agree, we should be listening everywhere.
We already have men in the field.
Because let's be perfectly clear.
If Mitch McDeere ever finds the truth in this case, everyone in this room is going to prison.
Got stuck in some traffic.
Here's our client now.
Don't worry Martin, we were just discussing your case.
McDeere! Hotel security! Open the door please! Mitch McDeere! Open the door!