Green Island Book I
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some excerpts from Greenways
Dave Patterson

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Chapter 19: The One V (excerpt)

first page chapter 19 As the Black figure slowly resumed his seat (it was not exactly 'sitting' as we think of it, more a flowing motion like some black thick syrup rearranging itself in a tilted bottle), I could see the activity was not yet finished from the defence table. I had noticed some whispered exchanges going on between the suits as the stories of the Faro and the woman and the priest had been unfolding, and as the Blackness challenged the One and was put in its place, and now - somewhat timidly, given what we had seen already today - one of the suits at the end of the table stuck his hand in the air, waving it a bit, very hesitantly, and half-rose from his seat. Given what had transpired previously, it was probably the bravest thing he had ever done in his life.

"Sir? Your Honor? May I have a word, Sir?"

The One looked down at him, evidently not unwilling to listen. "Yes - what is it you wish to say?"

"We - um - we understand and accept your full authority in these proceedings, Sir, let there be no mistake about that, no mistake at all, Sir," said the suit, apprehension visible in every aspect of his being as he tugged at his tie to enable a large swallow by the looks of things, fear provokes heavy salivation, probably something else he had never done before in his life, probably with a couple of previous incidents very fully at the front of his mind and wondering if these words would be his last; the One nodded shortly, as if telling him to carry on, "And, well, Sir, our client is a very busy man and there are many demands on his time, and is there any way we can expedite these proceedings, Sir, so our client can be excused, Your Honor Sir?"

This last was said in a bit of a rush, and the suit dropped back to his chair, a look of some fear on his face, not at all sure if he had overstepped the line that would see him just blink out of existence or have his tongue ripped out or some other horrible thing. But as the seconds ticked on by and he was still there, he began to relax - one thing we had all observed, at least so far, was that if The One was going to do something, there was no waiting around about it all, no warnings or discussions or speeches or anything like that. Say the wrong thing, and - ZAP! disappear. ZAP! tongue in the process of being removed sans anesthetic. It was a lesson that didn't need a lot of repetition. High consequence territory most anyone beyond the developmental level of nematode could understand. I just noticed there had been complete silence in the courthouse as the suit spoke - and now a small background buzzing resumed, as the observers realised there was going to be no terrible (for him) but interesting (for the watchers) instantaneous ZAP! for this suit.

"Very well," spoke the One after a few seconds of contemplation, a half-smile on his/er face, "We will hear your client, as you call him, now, if you wish. It is not entirely inappropriate, the first Faro to the current, to explore their similarities before looking back through some other things a bit more reflectively. But do not have expectations about leaving this place - you will stay until the proceedings have finished. Heed well my words, and do not 'object' or any of those other silly 'legal' things you do - you are in a different court than you are used to, as I think you recognize, where the rules are very different, and you have no standing except to do as you are told, and trust that I will make fair decisions, which I will - the same procedure, you might recognize, as the system you actually use in your own 'legal' proceedings, except that in the venues you frequent there is a lot more pretentious braying encouraged to disguise the overwhelming injustice of what is truly happening, and now on this day, at this time, at long last, you are the receiver of true justice rather than the dispenser of false, which is fitting enough. I think you will find, if I might offer a few small words of commiseration, that in whatever part of your soul the light of truth is hidden if you let it shine forth, that the justice you are to receive today will be a great deal fairer than the justice you have been used to dispensing - although I also can understand how that might not please you. In, at least, the shorter term that has occupied your life - perhaps you might take some wisdom from others you have professed belief in before this day and consider a longer view, a much longer view, which understands that justice and truth is for all of us a much better path ....

"Very well. Let us have your client, as you call him."

The suit barely had time to raise to a half-standing position behind the table and a whispered "But - but that's not what we meant at all! But...." - before -

The rendering was small this time, at least in comparison to some of the things we had seen before - with hardly a shimmer or pop the POTUS George Shurbullie appeared in the spacetime continuum bubble at the front of the room recently occupied by Faro that was evidently our witness stand for the day, seated at a desk in the Oval Office of a building he had no right to occupy but was now going to have to deal with, looking out through the bubble with somewhat typically startled, vacant, uncomprehending eyes. Alone in the big office, alone behind the big desk, alone with no advisors, no puppet-masters, no teleprompter, no retakes to put words in his mouth, but all alone. At last. At the most important time of his life, all alone. The worst dream. And about to get worster. After several seconds, or minutes or eons, of silence, with the One looking in at Shurbullie like a scientist might look at a not-very-interesting but somewhat repulsive bug under a microscope she was about to open up, Shurbullie squirmed in his chair. He put his hand somewhat tentatively to his ear with a slightly puzzled frown.

"Do not look for assistance! You answer for your deeds in your own words on this day!" spoke the One, a trace of grim amusement in the voice, as an adult might use with a known-to-be-wayward child who had been caught in some obvious (to the adult) lie about stealing some small thing from the kitchen, or the mother's purse, or some small transgression of the ways the parent had been teaching about how to live as a proper person.

Shurbullie dropped his hand with a guilty start, as a quick flashback to a time when he was very young made a quick pass through the void around us. His mother, or perhaps grandmother, they tended to become one and the same in these flashes that often came at unwanted times, had just caught him, almost literally, with his hand in the kitchen cookie jar. He had managed to stuff the whole thing in his mouth before she came through the door, but it was not eaten, and crumbs were falling from his lips along with the obvious lies (a slight protoplasmic thread extended from Shurbullie's head like a dream, or nightmare, with the One looking on and thinking, we could hear in the bubble, funny how the future resembles the past so many times, watching Shurbullie about to crumble once again crying, "No Mommy don't hit! It was Billie! It was Binnie! It was Sally! the dog stole the cookies... It wasn't me nonono Mommy don't hit!"

A pathetic little defiant smile tried to form around Shurbullie's mouth as he pushed the unwelcome memory away, but he was having a hard time of it, the shallow veneer of arrogance that had carried him through various uncomfortable situations over the last few years - a veneer enabled only by the support of many other more able people - having weakened during the previous hour, and now almost dissipated entirely with the evidence that the power here was not the power that had been supporting him in doing and concealing the things he had been doing. Although the One had yet to ask him a direct question, the silence was evidently getting to him, as it does to those of weak mind and spirit, guilty as hell of some thing or another, or many such things, and he began to babble, somewhat pathetically trying to retain the regal air of the Emperor while having no idea how to do so in an unscripted situation without the appropriate accoutrements to support the clothesless emperor. An evidently quite serious situation to judge by what he had been observing, somewhat uncomprehendingly, for the last while, as in a fish finding itself on the moon perhaps. With not a great deal more comprehension.

"I can't see my Secret Serving people, or my advicers here, who are always around at times like this, and I don't know what you want now. I mean - We always - I - they - it - I don't know what you want me to say, Sir," he finally managed to say, "it certainly wasn't me, however, whatever your problem is, and I really do need to get back to the White House at this time, there - I - we - we have an important meeting today - it - they all like to blame me for their problems, you know, but I - I - didn't do it, and I don't think anyone can prove anything, really, now. I don't think - I don't really know why you would want me here at all, whatever is bothering you. Ah, you know, ah - I suggest you start your investigations with a man named Clinton, who most Amer'cuns understand is the cause of almost all of our problems for the last hundred years or however long history goes back, or Osama or Saddam or Castro or some of the other evil monsters who are trying to destroy us - it's a big conspir'cy - it - and our great country because they hate our freedom, you know, they - they kill because they are just evil, y'know, they just follow an ideology of evil, you know, all Amer'cuns understand that, and we need to protect ourselves from them by any means possible, we don't want the first warning to be the mushroom soup - ah - cloud - ah - . We - they - I don't read much of that, you know, that history or world affairs stuff, I'm just a, you know, a face-to-face type, bring em on, I say - I have advicers for that sort of thing - I didn't do it, anyway, whatever it is you got concern about here, I'm sure we can establish that quickly enough, with my legal team here - I'm not really under oath, right, no bible and that stuff? - doesn't matter, my daddy taught me never to lie and I'm a religious man too - actually I'm not really sure what we're doing here at all, when we should be working tirelessly to eradicate terrorism and terraists from our world, which is my job as Leader of the Free World, the decider they call me, you know - they all want nukular weapons to threaten us with, you know... Tricky where are you?!?!!!"

"SILENCE!!!!" finally spoke the Voice, tinged with disbelief and a palpable anger bubbling just below the surface, from the great visage which had been growing increasingly darker, "I have said repeatedly on this day that NO LIES SHALL BE ALLOWED IN THIS ROOM TODAY!!! And the very first words out of your mouth are a string of them!!! - do you know nothing else!!???! BEHOLD MY DISPLEASURE!!!!"

Like everything else that happened that day, this was unbelievable.

The light that had been behind or around or in or through the Void darkened in a bright sort of darkness, like the sky before a big storm coming quickly in the middle of the day - and that is exactly what happened. The entire room remained dry, however, except for where Shurbullie sat - but then he was suspended in the air, naked, helpless, pathetic, in a huge outdoor plain, with lightning flashing all around him - and as he revolved in front of us once like a puppet on a string, limbs extended, eyes wide and mouth screaming in terror, one of the bolts of lighting struck him, sort of in slow motion we could see the electrons flashing into existence, joining to his body, surrounding it, linking in a brief sparkling chain to something high above and out of sight - then the huge flash and right there in front of our eyes he crisped like a fast-motion BBQ chicken spinning on a skewer over too-hot coals, protruding black tongue and eyeballs branding a terrible image on everyone's mind along with his terrible last wavering scream, a moment that seemed to last for hours (it was probably elongated in time, I don't think the One would have been above this for some effect s/he wanted to make sure noone forgot), and then there was a great BOOM! when the thunder followed, causing everyone to close their eyes and a hundred plus bums momentarily leapt from their seats in the courtroom, and when we opened the eyes again a second later as the bums returned to the seats, the storm was gone, and Shurbullie back in his place as he had been before the lightning, apparently unharmed, at least physically. His eyes were still terror-stricken however, he looked almost catatonic, his knuckles white where his hands gripped the arms of his chair, hair standing in a thousand points of fading sparks and damp from the sweat that was rolling down his forehead and cheeks, and when the Voice spoke again, somewhat more calmly but still rather booming and thunderish, asking him if he would be telling the Truth in the future, he slowly turned his pale sweaty head and stared into those great eyes for a long time, then nodded his head in agreement.

The punishment, at all times, shall fit the crime, in the Just World, everyone in that courtroom understood, and on this day there was to be no crime greater than defilement of the Truth ...

"Good," spoke the Voice, nodding slightly, "I don't really like these demonstrations, but if you refuse to accept where we are, and refuse to push away and deny the lies you have lived under for so long and embrace the Truth as you must on this day, they become necessary. I really do hope that no further such demonstrations will be required this day, they really add nothing to our purpose." S/he looked around the room, particularly at the suits' table, with a short but penetrating glance at the table where the Canadian Supreme Court Justices sat, but nobody would meet his/er eyes, although a lot of heads were shaking (only a bit, the hubris of the once mighty who are having trouble understanding they may be at the pinnacle no longer falls only slowly, there are appearances to be kept, it ain't over til it's over, better death than dishonor, but still shaking) from side to side, and whispers could be heard, "No Sir, no more demonstrations at all. Sir. Ma'am. Not necessary, Sir. No Sir. No, Ma'am..."

Behind the One the great figure of Justice appeared over his right shoulder as she rose to her feet from wherever she was sitting, and the Eye of the great sword stared fiercely into the courtroom as if equally outraged for a long minute, then she slowly sank out of sight again, taking the sword with its great Eye with her.

"Good then. Let us proceed..."

(continued in the book ....)

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