fic response, fic hounded requested a fic about Justin having jury duty, and I've written a little something along those lines.
Title: Justin the juror Author: dottie_jane Timeline: anytime post pink posse Rated: PG (there's one dirty word) A/N: I've never been called to jury duty and my knowledge of the US court system is pretty pathetic so I've kept the details of the trial intentionally vague.
Fidgeting in his seat, Justin could not shake the feeling of disgust. The trial was imploding on itself. Justin stopped his diligent note-taking while the lawyers convened at the judge’s bench for a few minutes. Justin didn’t realize he was staring at the defendant until the young man glanced at the jury and met Justin’s eyes. At just that moment, the anger left the defendant’s face and he lit up a bit as if they were friends recognizing each other a street. The defendant quickly looked away and slumped down a bit in his seat.
Without looking back up, Justin started drawing that expression. He didn’t want to forget it. He told himself that looks could be deceiving, but at the same time he wanted to remember that expression. Looking at the quick sketch, Justin realized that the look said more. It was a plea from young man to another. The judge sent the lawyers back to their tables and Justin flipped the page of his notebook, moving his focus back to the trial.
On his way back from the courthouse, Justin stopped at his favorite local fast food place, “Rafael’s burgers and stuff.” Once, he brought along Brian, who ate a turkey wrap and made crude jokes about how proud he was that Justin could fit such a huge burger into his mouth. Justin rolled his eyes at the memory and munched happily while he looked around at the other customers. The place was tiny and pretty filthy, but the set up was perfect for the young American male who just wanted to eat a big, juicy hamburger without any fuss. Rafael’s hamburgers drew an interesting mix of people, and they all had one common goal: meat. Justin snorted to himself a bit at the double meaning of his thought, and then crammed a few french fries into his mouth. When he looked up from his plate, he nearly choked. The defendant was sitting directly across from him.
“Hey,” he said looking at Justin with the same expression he wore earlier in the courtroom.
“Um, we really shouldn’t talk to one another. I know the trial’s over, but –
-“No, it’s okay,” the defendant interrupted, “I just wanted to say thanks.”
Justin didn’t reply as the defendant got up and left the table.
Thanks, Justin thought, for what? I voted guilty.
Justin ordered another hamburger to-go for Brian and started walking home. He was halfway to the loft, when he saw a homeless man on the corner with a dog. The man looked utterly wretched, but the dog looked like he was in good health. “Here,” Justin said softly, “it’s from Rafael’s. They’re the best burgers in town.” The homeless man eyed him skeptically. Justin realized the problem and said, “It’s not leftovers. I bought an extra one to bring home, but I’m really full.” The homeless man mumbled a thanks, and took the bag. Justin continued walking, and when he looked back he saw the man giving half of the burger to his dog.
Justin slid the loft door open, and glanced around. Brian was at his desk, furiously typing at the computer while yelling on the phone. It was his usual welcome home. Brian hung up and looked over at Justin.
“So, how was the trial of the century?”
“Fine. It’s over. Innocent, as voted by a jury of his peers” Justin said in a defeated tone.
“Hm,” was Brian’s only response. Brian looked down at Justin’s belly and smiled. “Looks like someone consoled themselves with Rafael’s culinary delights.” Justin looked down at his slightly swollen stomach and laughed. He walked over to Brian and sat on his lap. They silently stared at the computer screen together as Brian adjusted the font sizes. “So the fucker was guilty,” Brian ventured. “Yeah, he just had a really good lawyer,” Justin sighed.
“You’re not gonna join some new posse and beat up petty criminals are you?” Brian teased.
“I just really wanted to be a part of the process. See justice in action.”
“He was just some punk kid who stole a stereo, Justin. No one was hurt.”
“I know, but he committed a crime and he got away with it on a technicality.”
Brian held Justin a little tighter. Even after all these years, Justin’s sense of right and wrong were still so clear and unyielding.
“We can’t get them all, JT,” Brian whispered in Justin’s ear.
Justin rested his head on Brian’s shoulder and placed his hand over Brian’s heart. “I know, Rage.”