Joel never expected to be successful in reasoning with Nich. In fact he wasn't terribly shocked with the end result, though perhaps he was a little taken aback at the man's transparency. Certainly everything had been communicated through smiling lips with a strange calmness, but there was a sociopathic nature to it that felt as though Joel's case was writing itself. Naturally he'd have to dig a lot deeper than one recorded conversation to prove that Laslow was unfit to be this child's caretaker, but he was more motivated than ever to do so. The moment he returned to his sorry excuse for an office, he was already dialing up the number Petra had given him only the day before.
His conversation with Sharla Black went as expected; she gave him more details on the trouble Christian had been in at school, though otherwise seemed as though she was ready to wash her hands of it. Joel was trying to persuade her into a statement in Petra's favor without saying it directly; if, for any reason, she thought of her as unfit and said so, he'd have a hell of a bigger predicament on his hands. But he could work with what he was given so far, which was more about Christian himself. Father figures in his life (sorely lacking), the sort of background he'd already been raised in. Considering his only mother figure was ready to be rid of him, Joel couldn't imagine his environment had been the best.
Then came conversations with the principal of his school as well as a couple of teachers, some of which had a better perception of why Christian was acting out. It would be easier for Joel to make his case if he made certain that this kid needed love and attention first and foremost-- not to be tossed to the side like a piece of property in yet another household that wouldn't spend time with him. And he could have spent the following day processing these recorded interviews into a document (he didn't have a secretary for such things), but he was eager to let Petra know of his progress. That and he half-hoped that she might have more information for him than before.
(Scouring the internet for Laslow's previous shady cases would come that weekend, when he was drunk and obsessive and bored as always.)
So he made an appointment with her at her place this time, doing his best to keep his curiosity at bay as he wandered to her front door. Three knocks and he waited as patiently as he knew how to, shuffling his beat up briefcase from one hand to the other.