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The Outsider

Chapter 2
Baer, Werner and Associates was the prototypical law office; volumes upon volumes of
bound law books crammed into bookcases buckling under the weight, offices with walls of
diplomas, accolades, and family accoutrement; elder looking men, dignified with thousand dollar
suits and seventy dollar haircuts; and finally, the cheery receptionist at a cherry front desk.
“Can I help you?”
“Yes, we have an appointment with Michael Sullivan.”
“Your names, please?”
“Sarah and Daniel Adams.”
“One moment, please.”
The cheery receptionist left her cherry desk, presumably to fetch Mr. Sullivan. She soon
returned with Mr. Sullivan in tow, who seemed out of place with the décor of the office, as he
seemed to be much younger than any of his co-workers.
“Hello Sarah, Daniel. I’m Michael Sullivan, the executor of Mrs. Hickey’s estate.
Please, come to my office and discuss the terms of the will. In the interests of expediency, I will
show the part of the tape which pertains to you.”
We sat in Mr. Sullivan’s office in front of a television and VCR which held the last words
of my late Aunt Mae. Sullivan turned on the video, and the static gave way to my Aunt Mae,
sitting composed, facing the camera. The words Aunt Mae were about to speak, although I was
unaware of the consequences they were going to have in the future, seemed common and typical
for the situation at hand. Nothing would indicate about how my life was going to be turned
upside down, and how the words uttered forth from Mae’s mouth would have an ironic twist in
the future.
“To my niece, Sarah, for your unquestionable devotion and selflessness, I leave you my
house and all the belongings contained within, including automobiles. In addition, a savings
account at Rockland Federal Credit Union is in my name with you as the beneficiary. May you
use this money to better your life for yourself and my nephew, to move away from the
unfortunate neighborhood in which you currently reside and live a life which you so rightly
deserve. To my…”
Sullivan rose out of his chair and turned the TV off. I looked at my mother, who had
tears in her eyes, then looked down at my feet, trying to soak up the contents of the tape. New
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