Twelve Days of Fast Fiction, Day 08: THE JUDGE DISAGREED

Posted: 20 December 2014 in 12DaysFF, Christmas, fast fiction, fiction
Tags: , , ,

I first became aware of Rufus Hound when he was a team captain on Argumental, and he made an impression on me then as a nice, clever, funny man. In the years since, I’ve prefixed “very” to those labels, and it’s always great to see him on telly, or hear him on the radio, especially presenting My Teenage Diary on Radio 4 which quickly became essential listening. He was kind enough to challenge me for Twenty-Four Hours of Fast Fiction for Comic Relief in 2013, and it was a genuine pleasure to finally meet him a couple of weeks ago and discover he’s even nicer, even funnier and even cleverer in person.

It is a little known fact that Rufus spends part of the year in Shangri-La where they worship his tattoos.

Title: The Judge Disagreed
Word: brassican
Challenger: Rufus Hound
Length: 200 words exactly

As the crucial piece of evidence was presented, the jury leaned forward as one. The defence lawyer restrained a smile, their curiosity anticipated, as was the defendant’s demeanour; he’d been instructed to look ahead without reaction.

The lawyer glanced to his side, and the judge’s obvious interest encouraged him further. He addressed the waiting witness.

“So…”, the lawyer said, stretching the word out for several syllables, “this was the murder weapon, was it not?”

“No,” the detective replied, seemingly astonished at the question.

“I misspoke,” the lawyer said, and trotted out the line he’d practiced before the mirror that morning. “I meant to ask: did your questioning of my client give any indication that this was the catalyst for the fatal argument?”

The detective looked down at his notes, then replied in the affirmative. “The Christmas dinner was being placed on the table when an argument commenced. Brassican made a complaint, and the argument escalated, with fatal consequences.”

The judge raised an eyebrow, obviously incredulous that a brussel sprout could be the cause of murder. He liked sprouts, a lot.

The brussel sprout in question sat there, quietly, listening to his lawyer. And waited for his own chance to testify.

© Lee Barnett, 2014

This story is part of The Twelve Days of Fast Fiction (More information on the Twelve Days here)
Day 01: This Lion Of Winter – challenger: Antony Johnston
Day 02: An Immense Pecuniary Mangle – challenger: Steven Shaviro
Day 03: Is The Pope Pregnant? – challenger: Matt Brooker
Day 04: Father Christmas Got Stuck – challenger: Bevis Musson
Day 05: Early Sunday Chop Suey – challenger: Michael Moran
Day 06: Of Tinsel And Fire – challenger: David Baddiel
Day 07: The Man Who Could – challenger: Joanne Harris
Day 09: Sweeping Up Shattered Chandeliers – challenger: Kirsty Newton
Day 10: Glorious Concatenation – challenger: Neil Gaiman
Day 11: Weaving With Angels’ Hair – challenger: Nick Doody
Day 12: Their Eyes All Aglow – challenger: Mitch Benn

“There are two hundred stories collected in this volume. They are funny, they are thoughtful, they are romantic, they are frightening. To me, though, they are more than entertaining. They are inspiring.” – Wil Wheaton, from his introduction to volume 2 of The Fast Fiction Challenge

Two volumes of The Fast Fiction Challenge, containing 180 stories in Volume 1 and a further 200 stories in Volume 2, for £3.00 each, are available in ebook format from the author; email for details.

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