Inspired by: Farewell Angelina
A police officer escorted Duncan into the courtroom. Duncan quickly scanned the courtroom to see if Tiffany showed up. Part of him was glad she didn’t, but a piece of him hoped, he’d see her again. The officer unshackled his hands, and he took a seat with his council.
“All rise for honorable Judge Roberts.” The bailiff said as Judge Roberts entered the courtroom from his chambers.
Everyone rose for the Judge. Duncan felt a lump in his throat.
“Please be seated.” Judge Roberts said.
Everyone sat down. Ducan nearly collapsed from nerves.
“Duncan Henderson, you are indicted on four counts of vehicular manslaughter and one count of driving under the influence. On the count of driving under the influence, how do you plead?”
“Not guilty, your honor.”
“On the four counts of vehicular manslaughter, how do you plead?”
Duncan once again stood up and said, “Guilty, your honor.”
The defense attorney said, “We will drop the charge on the DUI since he pleaded guilty to the more serious charges, your honor.”
“All right. The accused has pleaded guilty. I hereby sentence you to ninety-nine years in prison. The court adjourned.”
Duncan’s blood ran cold. He couldn’t stop himself.
“Ninety-nine years? It was an accident, and you want to put me away for a century?”
“Be quiet, Mr. Henderson.” The Judge snapped.
“Why what are you going to do to me? Give me another hundred years? You’ve taken my life away from me.”
“You did that when you drove under the influence, young man!”
Duncan rose to his feet. “For the last time. I. Was. Not. Drunk!”
The doors and windows of the courtroom flew open unexpectedly. A gust of wind blew through the room, blowing papers around the room.
“Calm yourself, Mr. Henderson. You pled guilty, and this is your punishment. I expect you to assume your responsibilities. Bailiff remove Mr. Henderson from my courtroom.”
The bailiff walked across the courtroom, cuffed Duncan, and removed him.
Ducan felt strange energy coursing through him. He chalked it up to no longer having anything to live for. Maybe he’ll live to 129 years old and see freedom someday, but he wouldn’t be holding his breath. His life was over as if he had died in the car crash as well.
The bailiff handed Duncan off to state police officer who walked him out of the courthouse. Duncan felt a piercing gaze upon him as he stepped outside. He looked up and saw a gargantuan silvery glowing buck. He thought about pointing it out to the officer for a second, but it stood at least 10 feet tall, and there was no way he could miss it.
For some reason, the watchful eyes of the buck soothed him. The fact that it existed proved to him at least that he wasn’t at fault. He didn’t drive into oncoming traffic for no reason. Now he just needed to figure out what that reason was. He’ll have plenty of time to think about it.