The thing is, I’ve been reading until tears filled my eyes, and I’ve been clicking “Likes” and commenting as if my life depended on it. Then I realized I’ve left you guys off the hook just too long. So, I decided it was time to throw in another story. But it won’t hurt much: it’s very short. And, in my opinion, which counts for nothing for you as readers, but is the only thing that matters for me as author, this piece is entertaining. Really… and don’t look at me like that!
The Case of Pat O’Byrne [ short story – Sha’Tara]
[Before the magistrate of the county court on a beautiful Monday morning]
“Mr. O’Byrne, you were arrested Saturday night for drunk and disorderly conduct — how do you plead?”
“M’Lord, with all due respect, I plead not guilty, sir.”
“Very well. What have you to say in your defense before this court?”
“Yore ‘onor, I ‘ave never been drunk in me entire life, God’s truth. Yes, I admit that at times, I’ve left the neighbourhood pub feeling quite light. I’ve had times when it seemed to me the whole world was one happy place, full of good things and laughter. Times when I felt as if I could really be one with it all; when the stars moved in the skies, m’lord, and when the moon seemed brighter for the lightness of it all.
Then I’ve had those rare moments when, in the middle of this great and wonderful feeling, all things around me seemed to want to come to me and talk to me. And that, m’lord, is what happened on the night in question. The sidewalk, that lowly piece of cement that people trample under foot day after day, that never complains nor shirks its duty, well sir, it rose up to me to talk and got a bit too close, hitting me in the face. Everything would have been fine had not officer Maloney happened by, arresting me for drunk and disorderly conduct… Truly, m’lord, I was havin’ meself a deeply moving spiritual experience…”
“Are you quite finished, Mr.. O’Byrne?”
“Finished, m’lord? How can such a wonderful story every be finished? One may as well ask God if he is finished, then!”
“Enough of this. I fine the defendant one hundred Euro plus costs. This case is closed.”
“What, what is it now, officer Maloney? You got your conviction, didn’t you?”
“Well m’lord, what’s to be done about the sidewalk, then?”
“What are you on about, Maloney?” (with a definite air of deep frustration, being already late for his noon meal with judge Fergus…)
“Well m’lord, that bit o’ sidewalk that up and hit O’Byrne in the face, it’d still be standin’ up, an’ no one to put it back down to be sure.