Prosecution | Sunday Observer


7 February, 2021

Sarah and Nicolas, the soon-to-wed couple bring Samara across the border - USA to Canada hidden in their vehicle as she’s wrongfully accused of carrying illegal drugs. They pretend to be married although they aren’t. At the border, Sarah is arrested for carrying a gold pagoda in her handbag. She’s bailed out the following day. She wonders why Nicolas and Samara don’t turn up to inquire after her and, learns later that they’re in a secret affair and they’ve betrayed her.

Episode 4

Sarah did exist until the court date although, she was broken inside for being betrayed and abandoned. With regard to her offence, she thought it was the most illegal and immoral, ever. She herself failed to see the integrity in it, for how much she viewed herself from the norms of the society. ‘Sarah the convict’, she called herself.

The more she thought about her future appearance in court, the more uneasy she felt. It was a painful sore inside, as it came together with her present isolation. Some days she had the ‘convict’ all over her. They were her most difficult days. There was absolutely no reason for some days to be sober and the other days to be severely distressed; it was the same element that existed every day. In brief, she was a convict waiting for her doomsday to learn what the judgement would be. And of course, she made her days gloomy, distressed, dull, bright or smooth and nothing else.

She was tormented inside. Some days when she woke up in the morning, she remembered her scandal and its repercussions, strikingly. 

The thought itself wounded her mind. And she got up in distress, thinking of the uncertain future. How marvellously face could deceive! Her face gave no sign of sorrow.

The most horrifying days were the days that she had to communicate with her lawyer. She was reminded of the horrible day and everything about it. The calls she received from her lawyer, Veronica Williams were remarkable.

“Sarah, you have just one month now. You know the money needed for the fine. I spoke to your husband about it and he knows what to do.”

Sarah became thoughtful at the remark. Who was a husband? Who was a wife? What was a marriage? Were all these statuses imaginary or man made with the help of a document? 

“Sarah, do you hear me?” The lawyer asked amid her silence.

“I do... Yes, sure he knows what to do.”

“The payment needs to be done on that day. If you’re unable to pay the fine, the penalty is imprisonment for six months.”

Sarah didn’t think further about it. She didn’t expect Nicolas, nor did she not expect him. But there was some other remedy working in her mind. It was favourability that she unconsciously expected. She herself didn’t identify this expectation but, it was there.

The same astonishing expectation had innocently made a feast in her. And Sarah kept quiet until it materialised on the horrifying day.

She wanted to ask her well-mannered lawyer what her ‘husband’ had told her. But it seemed a little strange if she asked another person any question about it.

After all, husbands and wives communicated at home and there was no need for a wife to ask a complete outsider, what her husband planned to do about one trivially important matter. Sarah felt trapped.

“I’m pretty sure Nicolas will do the needful.” She said. 

“So be well prepared! The fine has to be paid on the same day.”

Time was very slow. The few days before court were the longest days ever. She doubted if there was a way of hastening time but, there was no such technique. She had to wait and, she didn’t cling to time. She went on with her routine until the due date arrived.

According to the lawyer’s advice, she groomed herself in a very decent dress. It was a printed dress, mainly yellow. She looked at herself in the mirror. Indeed, she was decently dressed. Her hair was loose. Nicolas and Samara haunted around her, all of a sudden.

They looked like they were a faint memory now. The few months that passed had made them almost disappear. How incredibly people departed, carrying their memories along with them, especially, when they were no more in contact with any sense! Yes, it was truly incredible and credible.

The expectation to see Nicolas or Samara in the court didn’t even cross her mind. Anyway, Sarah in her optimism of coming out of her mess, felt very lethargic to take any step towards it, except one, that was, selling a gold necklace of hers and having the fine ready.

However, she didn’t even realise that she was mingled with such assertiveness. It was her misfortune. But she really thought that it was her fortunate day.

Sarah arrived at the courthouse very early as advised by her lawyer feeling that it was a well-organised methodical day for the whole world, a day that things would begin and end as expected. But she never knew that she was in such belief. She only enjoyed the smooth flow of the day and its trend. She felt happy when she saw her lawyer coming towards her.

“Good, you’re here very early. I have received all the necessary documents from the Police….” The lawyer said moving her eyes around Sarah as if to find someone.

Sarah knew the reason for her search. The lady couldn’t find him so, she wanted to ask her but, she decided not to. She was surprised, anyway.  

“Will I have to speak at the trial?” Sarah asked one important question.

“No.” The lawyer said with a smile. “I do the talking. They won’t ask you anything.”

Sarah was satisfied as she dreaded talking in the courthouse.

The very smart lady lawyer was lost in her thoughts for a while. She was still puzzled to see Sarah all by herself.

Her experience and proficiency indeed gave the right answer but, she didn’t think further about it; it wasn’t her problem. She tried to be as career oriented as she could. Her profession was her hobby. More than her hobby, it was her passion or so was the pretended version of it. So most demandingly she kept her puzzle to herself with an enormous effort.

And Sarah was clueless.“I’m so happy that I don’t have to speak. I’d be very upset if I had to” She said extremely focused on herself.

“Oh, don’t worry about it! I’m here to speak on your behalf.” The lawyer said, asserting herself.

Sarah was happy. It was neither the promising possibility nor the confirming reality that made her happy, but her own unfamiliarity. The misfortune was that she was also unaware of her own unawareness and wasn’t even aware that she was expecting smooth sailing, so, she kept waiting for that gorgeous moment.

The court proceedings began. It was the same course of action as Sarah had expected, just like she had grasped from what she had heard.

The whole place came to stillness. Sarah moved all her senses towards the trials. She waited with patience. Each time a number was called, the accused came to the stand, the lawyer whispered to the judge and, in no time it was over. The trial was heard, the judgement was given or it was postponed.

How easy and smooth everything was done! Very soon Sarah would be out of the whole annoyance and how relieved she would be! As it was now, no other convict behaved as nervous as Sarah.

“Number 3-0-5-1-3” The court clerk called her number. Sarah woke up from her dream. Her lawyer had asked her to take the stand when her name was called but, she began to panic, just like Sarah. Looking at the lawyer’s face although from a considerable distance, she knew that she was urged to do the needful. She stepped on to the stand and watched the judge and the lawyer speak to each other.

Some soothing music began to play in her as she was at the very edge of ending the case and freeing herself. She was absurd, absurd of the absurd, just being senseless of the most important and relevant fact and over cautious about the secondary.

She had her eyes on the judge. She knew that he was asking a question from the lawyer.

And instantly, the lawyer’s eyes turned to her. She was about to  ask her something. But she herself decided that she needed to be much closer to her to speak so, she walked nearer.

“Do you have the money ready?” The lawyer asked.


“The fine?”

“Yes” Sarah confirmed.

She was required to pay the fine at the courthouse and she did. She left the court, happy and relieved, knowing what she was going to do next.

The following week, she was flying to another city far away, where no one would know her. She would start a new life. It would be her safe haven.

To be continued next week