Good Morning Ted and Jody:
Nancy made it through the whole sewing class yesterday—10 to 3. The class was about using her digital design unit. We still do not have a report on the MRI, but we got a letter from the insurance company saying they have approved the MRI—good thing as she had it already.
I had an early acupuncture appointment so left just before sunrise. Here at the house, we were socked in. However, up on WA504 and on the lake, there was some clearing which yielded these four images some 16 minutes and 4 miles, kind of strung out. But the fog prevailed and turned into rain the rest of the day keeping the three factions of the potential bright light rioters undercover. I came home in the morning and had some items that I had to deal with in terms of correspondence and checks to write. Then I went back into meet Nancy for lunch. So, I didn’t get to write very much until rather late today. Funny, once I started writing I relaxed. I guess writing this science fiction is addictive.
I have seen the weather maps, they never look promising. Apparently, Spring is officially coming, but in name only. It is sending along a front man while it stays in a warmer clime.
Stay warm, happy, healthy and full of vim and vinegar.
Warmest regards, Ed
040 Jessica Ann’s Day in Court Part I of II
Fiction in 1178 words by T. Edward Westen, 2017
Frank Thompson had stopped at the cafe two blocks from the courthouse and picked up a latte for his associate, a coffee for himself, and a hot chocolate with marshmallows for Jessica Ann. ‘It is going to be a long day for a four-year-old unless she is first or second on the docket,’ he thought.
Opening the door to the children’s waiting room, Frank could see Nancy playing with Jessica Ann. At first, Jessica Ann was too engrossed with the puzzle Nancy had laid out for her; but, when Frank bent over to hand Nancy her latte and set Jessica Ann’s hot chocolate with marshmallows down, Jessica Ann looked up and said, “I lost my basket.”
“No, honey, I took it to my office to keep it safe for you,” replied Frank.
“Can we go get it now?” asked Jessica Ann.
“No, but, I can have someone bring it here,” said Frank. “Would that be OK?”
Jessica Ann solemnly nodded her head and said, “Can they bring it now?”
Frank opened communications. “Nettie, you know that basket tagged with Jessica Ann’s name on it?” He listened. “Yes, the one with the deluxe reader in it. Could you or someone at the office bring it down to the children’s waiting room. She has asked for it back.” He was quite for a second or two and said, “Thank you. It is a priority.” He closed communications and turned to Jessica Ann and said, “Someone will bring it right down.” Pointing to the cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows he said, “You might try a sip or two of that before it gets too cold.”
Jessica Ann picked up the cup. With a sad look in her eyes, she said, “Thank you.” Then she took a sip and her face lit up and stayed lit up as she took more than a sip or two.
Jessica Ann was still sipping her warm chocolate with sticky marshmallow topping when Nettie entered the children’s waiting room. When Jessica Ann saw what Nettie was carrying she jumped up, overturning her cup and exclaimed “My basket. Mommy gave me this basket. I got it back. Mommy put a book in the basket.” She shook her head and said, “Mommy told me the book was in the bottom of the basket.” She reached out her hands and asked, “Can I have my basket?
Without a word, Nettie handed Jessica Ann the basket. Turning to Frank she said, “That must have been a whopper of a vitiation.” Nettie turned on her heal and left the room.
Nancy was on her hands and knees wiping up the sticky chocolate and marshmallow mess and looked up at Frank and said, “Grab something and wipe off Jessica Ann before she gets this stuff all over the room and both of us. Heck, she might even get it all over the judge when she goes in. He’s tolerant with children, but we’ll pay if he has to exercise that tolerance over a sticky child.”
Frank nodded and took Jessica Ann and her basket into the comfort area and said, “We need to clean you off before you make the book all messy. OK?”
Jessica Ann nodded her solemn nod again and said, “Mommy gave me the book. I love mommy.” And she let Frank wipe her the and picnic basket down.
Frank finished just in time for the Bailiff came in and said, “We are ready inside for the juvenile.”
“The juvenile’s name is Jessica Ann, Alphonse, Jessica Ann,” said Frank Thompson. He turned to Jessica Ann and said, “Alphonse is going to take you in to see a nice man. Please go with Alphonse.”
Jessica Ann, still with a solemn look on her face held her hand up for Alphonse to take it and looked questionably at Frank and Nancy.
Frank said, “We will be here when you finish talking to the nice man. We promise.” Frank crossed his chest and added, “Promise.” All the while Frank was nodding his head to reassure Jessica Ann.
Jessica Ann, holding Alphonse’s hand sighed, shrugged her shoulders and said “OK” in the tiniest voice Frank had ever heard.
Alphonse said, “It will be OK Jessica Ann, I’ll see they are here,” as the two of them opened the door to the court.
Family Court Judge Douglas Henderson looked up from some papers on his desk when Alphonse and Jessica Ann entered his court. “Hello, young lady. My name is Jude Douglas. You should probably just call me Judge.”
Jessica Ann looked at Judge Douglas and said, “My name is Jessica Ann. You should call me Jessica Ann Judge, OK?”
“Jessica Ann, I am delighted to meet you,” said the judge. Pointing to an elevated chair he said, “You might like to test that chair and see if it is comfortable for you.”
Alphonse turned to Jessica Ann and asked, “Would you like me to lift you?”
Jessica Ann shook her head no and said, “I’ll do it myself.” She then proceeded to climb into the elevated chair using the chair rungs and the table top to gain extra purchase.
“Is that comfortable? Asked the Judge.
Jessica Ann nodded her head and said, “I like being up high.”
“Good,” said the Judge. “Now, Jessica, can you tell me about your father?
Jessica Ann looked just a bit disappointed and said, “I am Jessica Ann, not just Jessica.”
The Judge replied, “I am sorry, I very rarely get to talk to people your age who have two names. Will you forgive me?”
“Yes.” But Jessica Ann’s face offered a look that said, ‘you need to be careful and call people by their right names.’
“OK, Jessica Ann, can you tell me about your father?”
“Daddy works,” Jessica Ann replied.
“Does he play with you?” the Judge Asked.
Jessica Ann’s lips formed a faint pout and she said, “Daddy works a lot.”
“Who plays with you?” The Judge asked.
“Margie, Fellow Traveler, and Mommy play with me,” she replied.
“Who is Marie?” the Judge asked.
“She is just Margie. I go to her house when Daddy works.”
“Who is Fellow Traveler?” asked the Judge.
“He lives next door with Mr. Bastion, Jessica Ann said. I throw sticks and he brings them back. I like playing with Fellow Traveler. But he has to go inside a lot.
“When do you play with your mother?” asked the Judge.
“All the time. She gave me a picnic basket when I found it. I won. It has a book in it. Do you want to see the basket?” Jessica Ann asked with an eager look on her face.
The Judge looked around and said, “Where is the basket, Jessica Ann?”
She pointed to the door leading to the children’s waiting room and said, “It is in there with Frank and Nancy. I get it.” She started to get off the chair.
The Judge said, “No, Jessica Ann, you sit still and enjoy the chair. Alphonse will get it.; Alphonse go get Frank, Nancy and the basket, please.”