Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Homesdead - Part 14. Maryanne Wells.

This is Part 14 of a serial story.  The story began here.

I shook my head, not believing what I heard. “Can you repeat that, your honor?”

“Certainly. Is the house haunted?”

Beside me, Steve shifted uncomfortably in his seat. If it was up to him, the word 'haunted' would never have entered the courthouse.

“Your honor, I haven't been in the house. I can't give you my opinion on the subject,” I said briefly.

“Then I suggest you visit the house,” Judge Brockade replied.

Christian Johnson gasped and choked simultaneously. He sounded like a shocked toad. “You can't be serious. There are no such thing as ghosts. A real judge would never even consider the possibility.”

Judge Brockade glared coldly. Christian's lawyer shook his head. The judge was pissed, and the plaintiff's lawyer was smart enough to know it.

Don't tick off a small town judge. Especially one who's already showing favoritism to the local attorney.

“I hope your client isn't trying to tell me how to run my court,” Judge Brockade snapped at the Dallas lawyer, Roger Seren.

He put a restraining hand on Christian's arm and said, “No, your honor.”

“There's another possibility,” I interjected.

Steve turned to me. “Oh? And what's that?” he asked sarcastically.

“Christian Johnson rigged up some electronics and ropes to make his step-mother think she was being haunted.”

The room got very quiet. Even Nora Johnson looked taken aback.

“That's a pretty nasty accusation,” said Roger Seren. “Do you have any proof of that?”

“Like I said, I haven't seen the house yet.”

Judge Brockade picked up a pen and made some marks on her legal pad. “Ladies and gentleman, we will meet again after Ms. Wells has visited the house.”

Did I play the home town advantage? Yes. Yes, I did. I never claimed to play fair. Any competent lawyer who claims they do is lying.