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Thursday, February 07, 2013

The Angel Defense

Category: Short Story

The Angel Defense


    “Objection,” the prosecutor, a skinny overachiever with thick glasses leaped to his feet. “There is no such thing as angels or fairies, your honor, and even if there were such things, their existence has no relevance to the crime before us.”
    “Objection overruled,” said the judge laconically. “I’d like to hear Mr. McGreavy explain exactly how angels caused his accident. You may proceed Mr. McGreavy.”
    “Thank you your honor.” McGreavy, a short balding chubby lawyer who could accurately be described as “cherubic” had won the right to represent himself in this wrongful death suit. “As I was saying, I have always ‘suffered’? I’m not sure that’s the right word. I have always been afflicted with the ability to see angels or fairies or whatever they are. I see them all of the time flying about here and there. They are literally everywhere. I can see many dozens of them flying around this court room right now.”
    “Your honor, please,” once again the prosecutor, Mr. Henley, was on his feet, “this is quite preposterous. A paranormal ability is hardly a defense…”
    “Please take your seat, Mr. Henley,” the judge snapped. “I’ll decide what is a valid defense or not in this courtroom. I already ruled on your objection. I am interested in Mr. McGreavy’s claim that he is not responsible for the terrible events of November 23rd. I personally would like to hear him out.”
    “Once again, thank you your honor.” McGreavy began pointing to the invisible beings he claimed were flying all around the room. “There’s one I call a cardinal—all decked out in red tights. Over there is one I call a super hero because of its cape. There’s one that’s almost naked or at least scantily clad. I call that a classic fairy.”
    “How many of these invisible flying creatures would you estimate there are in this room?” interrupted the judge.
    “Oh, I’d guess between a hundred and a hundred fifty,” answered McGreavy.
    “And how many would you guess were in the car with you the day you lost control and injured six people?”
    “Around twenty five, your honor.”
    “I have to say, Mr. McGreavy, that unless you can prove to the satisfaction of this court that these fairies or whatever they are actually exist, I’ll have to rule against you. Well, sir, have you anything more to offer in your defense?”
    “No your honor. But the angels are here, they’re real. I can prove it.”
    “And how do you propose to do that?” asked the judge?
    McGreavy reached deep into his pant’s pocket and took out a handful of some kind of sparkling dust. “Now watch closely,” he said and tossed the powder into the air. The room was immediately filled with swarms of brightly colored flying creatures. The room let out a collective gasp of wonder. The creatures filled the room like a flock of birds, too numerous to count. They flitted around the heads of the judge and Mr. Henley and the jury. There were several bright red cardinals, a few dozen naked classics and a host of super heroes blithely flying around.
    The sparkling powder wore off in a few seconds and the angels or fairies or whatever they were once again became invisible. The courtroom erupted into pandemonium. The judge banged his gavel to restore order. When order was restored, the judge cast his gaze on the defendant.
    “That was most interesting, Mr. McGreavy, most interesting indeed. Someday, when we have more time, you’ll have to explain how you did that. Unfortunately for you, sir, six people were injured by your negligence and we are lucky that things didn’t turn out much worse than they did. It seems to me, Mr. McGreavy, that someone whose vision is blocked by a crowd of paranormal beings should not be behind the wheel of an automobile. No amount of invisible creatures absolve you of your responsibility to the rest of society. I am therefore ruling that the jury disregard the angel defense and return a verdict of guilty on all counts. In addition, I am revoking your license to drive. Do you have anything further to say?”
    “But your honor, you saw them, you all saw them, they’re real they’re all around us. It wasn’t my fault.”

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