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My GA Writing Prompts - 5. A New Law

Response to Writing Prompt #149: Use the following words in a story: Starry sky, bottle of champagne, Zombie, a ticket, and a deer.

“Explain to me again why I should get married.”

"I must not have been clear, just now, when I was explaining about the new law." Kit’s hands were folded neatly, businesslike, on the table. His foot tapped a silent, nervous staccato on the floor, out of sight from Tobias, the man seated across from him.

"Ah yes, the new law" Tobias spoke softly, his voice a desert wind on a starry night. "This would be the law allowing same sex couples to marry?"

"Not that one." Kit was appalled at his own curtness, yet another indication of his jacked up nerves. "I was referring to the proposed changes in mandatory prison terms for felons. The new law is under consideration due to the state’s budget shortfall. It’s your ticket out of here."

Tobias' stern lips relaxed faintly in what might pass for a smile. "I beg your pardon for the inconvenience, but perhaps you could repeat the particulars for me. Those of us who aren’t attorneys sometimes struggle to follow the intricacies of the law."

Kit's eyes narrowed. Was Tobias teasing him? Tobias was an extremely intelligent individual and they both knew it. He had been hailed as an innovative and strategically brilliant businessman prior to the fickle public's delight in painting him as a marauder of their personal bank accounts. Tobias certainly had not lagged in the handful of previous discussions with Kit regarding his legal situation.

Maybe the plan was faulty, Kit worried.

Tobias was staring across the table with his grey, freakily colorless eyes when Kit started in again.

"The state assembly is due to pass the budget this month. They're having to make some deep cuts across the board, including the prison system. Housing prisoners is expensive. The jails, food, medical care. All the guards." His hand flew out in a vague indication of the uniformed officers who herded orange clad men down the halls, both captors and captives moving like zombies.

"Yes, I understand the burden we prisoners place on the tax paying public." The words were carefully stripped of any emotion as if Tobias were making a matter-of-fact statement. Kit, however, was starting to pick up on the infinitesimal nuances of Tobias' speech. He was almost positive he heard some pain behind the words.

"The state assembly would like to relieve the public, and itself, of that burden, at least partially. They plan to parole large numbers of non-violent prisoners after the new budget goes into effect.” Kit tapped the table to emphasize his next words. "The crimes for which you were convicted are non-violent."

"You believe I'll be paroled if this legislation passes." "I believe you have a possibility of parole, yes." Kit leaned forward. "I believe your chances of parole are much stronger if you are married."

"Because the parole board wants to see stability in the home life of released prisoners, connections to the community, that sort of thing." Tobias concluded for him.

"Exactly. Statistics show lower recidivism rates if there are strong ties to community." Kit's smiled. Perhaps Tobias had been listening earlier after all. "I've watched the legislation move forward. Even if passed this week it will be at least July before they start paroling prisoners. That's eight months away. If you marry now, it won't look suspicious, as if you're only marrying to get out of jail."

Kit sat back grinning. In his mind, they could order up a bottle, a whole friggin’ case, of champagne. Tobias was practically a free man. They still needed to clear his name, prove that it had been Tobias’ father who had run the Ponzi scheme and then framed his son when it unraveled. That would be so much easier to do with Tobias on the outside.

Tobias eyes darkened speculatively. "There is still a lot left to chance here. The bill could fail to become law. I could still be denied parole."

Kit sobered. He was a glass half full person. "All true. However I still think you should marry now. As you said, the legislature just legalized same sex marriage. Because of the press coverage during your trial, everyone knows you’re gay. No one would question your desire to marry now that it's legal. If you wait until the bill passes and the parole boards convene, it might look suspicious."

"You seem to have thought this through. Tell me, have you found a husband-to-be for me as well?" Tobias lips had the faint smile again. Despite the working relationship Kit still felt intimidated by this man. Not unsafe. Even without guards stationed just outside the door of the tiny interview room, Kit would not have feared for his physical well-being. No, the intimidation came from sheer force of intellect and will. Both rolled off Tobias so powerfully Kit sometimes wasn't sure he could navigate the currents. He was a baby shark. Tobias was Jaws.

"I rather thought you would be able to bring someone to mind." Kit frequently reminded himself to show no hesitation, no weakness, when working with Tobias. His nature exuberance helped. With access to his personal wealth cut off, Tobias had been forced to seek out pro bono legal representation for his appeal. Kit had been the only person to step forward. His plan to get Tobias out of jail would work. The legal situation could be addressed separately.

Now, however, the matter of marriage rested with Tobias. Kit had tried, and failed, to picture the man Tobias would form a union with. Privately, only to himself, Kit had admitted to a visceral attraction to his client, one stronger than any he had experienced in his 27 years. Knowing that a reciprocal attraction was virtually impossible, Kit had refused to dwell on his fascination with the imprisoned mogul. Nonetheless, he was unable to suppress a stab of regret now that they were actually discussing specifics of Tobias' marrying another man.

"You mentioned some friends had set you up on a blind date." Tobias finally responded to Kit's suggestion that he identify a marriage partner. "As I recall that was one of our shorter meetings since you had to get back to town."

Kit's brow furrowed in confusion. "That's right."

"Anything come of it?"

"No" Kit's eyes flicked away and then back to Tobias. "I wasn't his type."

"So, you're single. Unattached."

"Yes." Kit nodded slowly, sensing a force moving towards him. Headlights. Bearing down on a deer.

"Marriage then. You and me. Brilliant plan. Genius, if it gets me out of here. Next week. Wear a tie. Might as well have one of us look the part."

Response to Writing Prompt #149

Copyright © 2015 Percy; All Rights Reserved.
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Feeling inspired? I like the name Kit - reminds me of another time. You have a precise, direct manner. You write with simple force. Thanks for sharing.

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Well, what a generous offer to a prisoner, and a client. Freedom with the benefits of marriage. Your writing was so matter of fact, that I felt like I was listening to them talk to eath other. Good job!

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On 08/28/2012 01:57 AM, joann414 said:
Well, what a generous offer to a prisoner, and a client. Freedom with the benefits of marriage. Your writing was so matter of fact, that I felt like I was listening to them talk to eath other. Good job!
Many thanks Joann! I appreciate the feedback.
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On 08/27/2012 07:45 PM, carringtonrj said:
Feeling inspired? I like the name Kit - reminds me of another time. You have a precise, direct manner. You write with simple force. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks - so glad you like reading what I write. Kit Carson was an early fascination of mine. :)
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Well Percy that was different. Two sharks in the water and the one goes for the blood of the other. Poor man didn't even know he was setting himself up for the marriage. This should be an interesting go at life together. Curious to know what else was going on but you did a great job with this.

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Two years too late :P but I like your prompt. I wonder how their wedding went and if he got out of jail . Great prompt ! :)

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On 09/07/2014 08:27 PM, Slytherin said:
Two years too late :P but I like your prompt. I wonder how their wedding went and if he got out of jail . Great prompt ! :)
Thank you!
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On 09/07/2014 11:42 PM, Timothy M. said:
Now this one I'd dearly love to see a sequel for !
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