Day of Dread, Part Nine

Continued from Part Eight

Merle packed up his papers.

Snyder said, “It moves.”

“That was embarrassing, Snyder.”

“So is hanging. Even I know Hollerman was way out of line. What were you doing?”

“What are you talking about? The man’s brilliant. In getting an acquittal, objecting like a bad TV lawyer won’t help.”

“So what’s your next plan, Perry Mason?”

Merle blinked. “Who?”

I forgot. I’m in the land of the philistines. “Never mind. What’s your plan?”

“I’ll call an Imperial law expert who dis-agrees with Hollerman regarding the Imperial charter.”

“So you can let Hollerman destroy your law expert just like he destroyed Dr. Boulet?”

“Look, this is good law I’m practicing.”

“I’d hate to see bad law. You were so stiff, you should be thankful we don’t hold court outdoors. There’d be pigeons landing on you.”

“Anything else?”

“That whole ‘rough men’ quote was taken from Orwell, whose works are banned by the Empire.”

Merle smiled. “Great. One question. How did you know that?”

Snyder swallowed. “I see your point.”

They couldn’t get Hollerman in trouble for reading forbidden literature unless Snyder ad-mitted to reading it. Besides, Hollerman could claim he didn’t know Orwell had said it. People still said ‘big brother’ to refer to intrusive gov-ernment policies even though Orwell had been banned for fifty years along with other authors that would cause stress by making the people distrust the Imperial government.

“Thanks for nothing, Merle.” Snyder walk-ed towards the waiting guard.

Mama Borden called, “Don’t worry, baby! Mama will take care of everything!”

Snyder smiled. That’d be what she’d tell him when he came to her with a scraped knee when he was a boy. A gallows was a lot harder to deal with.

Dread joined Mama Borden. “Pardon me, Mrs. Borden, would you like to accompany Specialist Snyder back to the stockade?”

No way, there’s something wrong here.

Mama smiled. “Why, thank you, Colonel, I think I will.”

Snyder swallowed. This wouldn’t be good.

Continued Next Thursday

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