Randall Baker stubbed out his cigar and stood to address the room.  He cleared his throat and eight eyes focused on him.

“Our people have been talking discreetly with the clerks.  It appears that if the panel were to rule today, we would lose by at least a 5-4 margin and possibly 6-3.  MacFarland is difficult to read, but there’s a strong chance that he would vote against us.”

“That’s not a surprise,” replied Harvey Colan.  “Nonetheless, it’s disturbing.  That would be a disastrous result.  It would cost our companies billions.”

“Disastrous” concurred Prescott Fitzpatrick.  He did not look well – his face seemed a bit green, as if the news was about to make him physically ill.  In truth, Fitzpatrick did feel a bit sick to his stomach, and he was pondering the question of whether or not he could make it to the bathroom if a fit of nausea overcame him.  Probably not.

“There is a possible course of action.”  Again, the men focused on Baker and he continued.  “The man in charge is sympathetic to our cause.”

“Fat lot of good that does us” piped up Colan.  “He can only fill vacancies, and it’s quite unlikely that a vacancy will occur in the timeframe we need.  Much less two vacanices.”

“Gentleman,” smiled Baker “We are men of action.  There are steps that can be taken to expedite the process.”

The five men huddled, and Baker shared his master plan with them.  The plan was expensive, and it carried an element of risk.  However, it was the best chance to win.  With billions of dollars at stake, the quintet reached a unanimous decision.

Three days later, the funds were in place, and Randall Baker retained the services of Bob Herndon.  Herndon enjoyed his work, and the plan unveiled by Baker greatly interested him.  It was interesting work, and the impact of his work would be felt across the country.  Herndon prided himself on professionalism and spent a considerable amount of time on the preparations for the project.  When the preparations were complete, he jumped into his pickup and headed for some hunting ground upstate.  It was deer season.

Herndon settled into a spot on the hill that overlooked the clearing.  When his quarry finally entered the clearing, he took a close look through his rifle’s sight and fired.  He aim was true and he scored a kill.  A man rushed into the clearing.  Herndon waited, and held his fire.  Two other men followed in quick pursuit.  Yes, the fat one, this was the man.  Herndon took careful aim and fired again.  He watched the man topple to the ground and slowly eased back into the woods to make his escape.

Randall Baker was settling in for a cup of tea and a plate of scones when the television broke in with a special report of the good news.

“Shocking news tonight” declared the vacuous (and physically attractive) anchor.  “Supreme Court justices Alfred Morris and Clarence Casey were fatally shot today while deer hunting at Casey’s farm in upstate New York.  Police believe that foul play may have been involved.”

Baker smiled.  There were now two vacancies on the Supreme Court.  The president’s nominees for the court would certainly be sympathetic to his client.  Herndon’s work would save the companies billions of dollars, and Baker himself would reap a generous bonus.

2 Comments

Share this article via email

Kosmo is the founder of The Soap Boxers and writes on a variety of topics. Many of his short stories have been collected into Kindle books.

Like this site? Subscribe via RSS, Subscribe via Email, or Follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

The permanent URL for this article is:
http://www.thesoapboxers.com/lest-ye-be-judged/