Trial of the Heart

 The trial takes place at dusk.  A solitary crow stands perched upon the white marble courthouse roof cawing.  The guards speak casually amongst themselves as they confidently stride, heads held high in their neatly pressed silver uniforms, pulling the black bag prisoner along behind them.

A sudden burst of light floods the prisoner’s eyes as the bag is abruptly removed.  He recoils slightly until his eyes adjusted to the brightly lit courthouse filled with overjoyed and overdressed citizens, doing their best to look concerned. 

The judge addresses him: “You come before this court of law and science charged with murder.  You face banishment from the realm, for being unwilling to submit to the proper treatment.  How do you plea?”

The man lifts his head, locking eyes with the judge in a gross breach of protocol and answers over the shocked murmurs of the crowd.  “Not guilty.”

The judge, aloof and unshaken, continues “The evidence is undisputable.  Your defense?”

“It was a crime of passion.  In the defense of my lady I would die.  Or kill.”

The crowd explodes in a barrage of insults and words of disgust.  Murder is a rare offense and has been for years.  Also, with the invention of Serenity, and later Intention a case never makes it to court. 

“Order!  Order!  Then you admit what Intention has verified, that your crime was intentional and not temporary insanity?  Also, you admit that under similar circumstances, you would do it again?”

The man clenches his jaw, relinquishing his calm demeanor for a moment, and yells in a rage “They were raping her!”

“They have been found guilty of their crimes as well, and have undergone the Serenity treatments.  They are now incapable of such a crime and therefore we have no reason to fear them.  You, on the other hand, do not submit.”

Regaining his composure, the prisoner calmly looks around the room.  “There is evil in the heart of man.  While it may be quelled in those men, it remains in others.  I will not bind myself to the defenseless nature your solution offers.”

“By the law then, you are unfit for our just and peaceful society, and must be banished.”  The judge remarks coldly.

“Where is justice when your answer is to eliminate the will that defines humanity, as dark as it may be?  Where is peace, when your citizens must cower and allow themselves to be robbed and killed without fighting back for fear of your so called “Serenity” treatments.  Situations like the one I found myself in are rare, but they are still a reality.”

He once again raises his eyes and to the judge, seeming to peer into his soul.  “Even you, Judge, on your crystal throne, must toss and turn on occasion.  Knowing the consequences, you must have weighed your options as I have: retaliate and risk the very aspect of your free will that makes you human; or to submit to unknown brutality, perpetually horrified at the prospect that you would always be defenseless?”

An eerie hush comes over the courtroom.  A few of the citizens can be heard muffling tears so as not to appear guilty of such thoughts, while others shake their heads hypocritically, but a gripping truth hangs in the air like chocking fog.

“The fact is that no prisoner has been found pure by Intention, and all must relinquish their will to Serenity.  In the name of justice and peace, perhaps all should be submitted to this infallible test of the heart?”

The judge struggles to respond to such a rebuke, mustering only a whisper: “That would not be right.”

“No, it is not right.”  With that, the prisoner bows his head.

The judge finally responds, to the relief of the crowd, after a painfully drawn out moment of self reflection.  “Then I hereby banish you from our realm, in accordance with the law.  May you, too, eventually find peace.”

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~ by songoflove on March 17, 2011.

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