Doesn't the scene below sound familiar?
Mitch spun from the window and gawked at the man. "You scared me," he said, and breathed deeply.
"I'm sorry. I'm Nathan Locke. I don't believe we've met."
"I'm Mitch McDeere. The new man" They shook hands.
"Yes, I know. I apologize for not meeting you earlier. I was busy during your earlier visits. "
Mitch nodded and knew for certain he had never been within a hundred yards of Nathan Locke. He would have remembered. It was the eyes, the cold black eyes with layers of black wrinkles around them. His hair was white and thin on top with thickets around the ears, and the whiteness contrasted sharply with the rest of his face. When he spoke, the eyes narrowed and the black pupils glowed fiercely. Sinister eyes.
"Maybe so," Mitch said, captivated by the most evil face he had ever encountered. "Maybe so."
Nathan Locke withdrew from the doorway and disappeared. Mitch checked the hail, then closed the door. No wonder they keep him on the fourth floor away from everyone, he thought. Now he understood why he didn't meet Nathan Locke before he signed on. He might have had second thoughts. Probably hid him from all the prospective recruits. He had, without a doubt, the most ominous, evil presence Mitch had ever felt.
The five-story building had been built a hundred years earlier by a cotton merchant and his sons. Deserted, neglected, then renovated time and again since the first war, it had been purchased for good in 1951 by an aggressive tax lawyer named Anthony Bendini. He renovated it yet again and began filling it with lawyers. He pampered the building, indulged it, and fortified it, sealing doors and windows and hiring armed guards to protect it and its occupants. He added electronic surveillance, security codes, closed-circuit television and a partners' dining room on the fifth floor with a captivating view of the river.
In twenty years he built the richest law firm in Memphis, and, indisputably, the quietest. Secrecy was his passion. Every associate hired by the firm was indoctrinated in the evils of the loose tongue. Everything was confidential. Salaries, perks, advancement and, most especially, clients. Divulging firm business, the young associates were warned, could delay the awarding of the holy grail—a partnership. Nothing left the fortress. Wives were told not to ask, or were lied to.