Me: Hello, Ted.
Ted: Good afternoon.
Me: Rex Parley was good enough to let me interview you in one of the small conference rooms at the firm.
Ted: Fine, that way I will be able to get back to work right after we're done. This firm counts on me a lot, you know.
Me: Yes, I understand that you are one of the top litigators. So besides that, how do you feel about being the bad guy in my book?
Ted: Well, I am not pleased at how they watered me down.
Me: Editors. I'm sorry Ted, but you were a little too off-color for my conservative publisher.
Ted: Like in the book it says that I told Camille that I told Rex I enjoyed the view from his office and I told her he thought I meant the view out the window. I've been misquoted. What I said was that I told Rex I enjoyed the view of the mountains and I told Camille he thought I was talking about the Rockies.
Me: Yes, Ted. I heard you right the first time, but as I said, the editor thought that you commenting on a specific part of Camille's anatomy might make some people uncomfortable, besides Camille, that is. It was hard on me as a writer, too, you know, to figure out how to convey what a jerk you are but still keep your comments tasteful.
Ted: What about after Camille's baptism? I thought my line about the Celestial Wet T-shirt Contest was pretty clever. How did that end up on the cutting room floor?
Me: Again, Ted, with the anatomy. Didn't your mother breastfeed you long enough? Wait, I think one of the secretaries suggested that, but again, I ended up taking that conversation about you out.
Ted: The secretaries in the break room were talking about me? Do tell.
Me: Yes, Ted. Women are talking about you, but not in a good way. After Camille finally came forward, a few other secretaries added in their experiences. But I don't want to get into this too much. People need to read the book to find out what happens.
Ted: My character adds all the intrigue to your book. I am indispensable to this firm and I am indispensable to your book.
Me: I think I got the size of your ego right.
Ted: So do you think the attorneys you used to work with are wondering who I am based on?
Me: No doubt. But you aren't based on anyone I worked with at a law firm, well, maybe a little inspiration for the ego, but you are more of a composite of a few fellows I worked with along the way at other jobs.
Ted: So it took several men to combine to make one of me.
Me: Again with the ego thing. Yes, Ted. You are a composite of many men I have known.
Ted: Well, I've got a court appointment at 2:00, so I have to cut this short. Would you like a chocolate? I'm about to be made partner, you know, and this box of Ghirardelli chocolates from Mr. McLelland, the senior partner, clinches the deal. He sends them out every year at Christmas time to all the partners and impending partners. I got a ten-pound box and everyone else only got a five-pound box.
Me: I'm impressed. Of course, no one is more impressed with you than you.
Ted: I'll be in that big corner office someday. When Rex Parley has been put out to pasture, I'll be the one heading up this firm.
Me: Of course you will, Ted. You are a powerful man.
Ted: It is about time someone realized that.
Me: But have you ever heard the saying "The pen is mightier than the sword?"
Ted: I suppose you think I should be schmoozing you because you hold my fate in your hands.
Me: Another chocolate wouldn't hurt. See you in Area 51, I mean Chapter 51.