Justice eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 66 pages of information about Justice.
I might wish, I am not able to justify to my conscience a plea for mercy which has a basis inimical to morality.  It is vitiated ‘ab initio’, and would, if successful, free you for the completion of this immoral project.  Your counsel has made an attempt to trace your offence back to what he seems to suggest is a defect in the marriage law; he has made an attempt also to show that to punish you with further imprisonment would be unjust.  I do not follow him in these flights.  The Law is what it is—­a majestic edifice, sheltering all of us, each stone of which rests on another.  I am concerned only with its administration.  The crime you have committed is a very serious one.  I cannot feel it in accordance with my duty to Society to exercise the powers I have in your favour.  You will go to penal servitude for three years.

Falder, who throughout the JUDGE’S speech has looked at him steadily, lets his head fall forward on his breast.  Ruth starts up from her seat as he is taken out by the warders.  There is a bustle in court.

The judge. [Speaking to the reporters] Gentlemen of the Press, I think that the name of the female witness should not be reported.

     The reporters bow their acquiescence.  The judge. [To Ruth, who
     is staring in the direction in which Falder has disappeared] Do
     you understand, your name will not be mentioned?

Cokeson. [Pulling her sleeve] The judge is speaking to you.

     Ruth turns, stares at the judge, and turns away.

The judge.  I shall sit rather late to-day.  Call the next case.

Clerk of assize. [To a warder] Put up John Booley.

     To cries of “Witnesses in the case of Booley”: 

The curtain falls.

ACT III

SCENE I

A prison.  A plainly furnished room, with two large barred windows, overlooking the prisoners’ exercise yard, where men, in yellow clothes marked with arrows, and yellow brimless caps, are seen in single file at a distance of four yards from each other, walking rapidly on serpentine white lines marked on the concrete floor of the yard.  Two warders in blue uniforms, with peaked caps and swords, are stationed amongst them.  The room has distempered walls, a bookcase with numerous official-looking books, a cupboard between the windows, a plan of the prison on the wall, a writing-table covered with documents.  It is Christmas Eve.
The governor, a neat, grave-looking man, with a trim, fair moustache, the eyes of a theorist, and grizzled hair, receding from the temples, is standing close to this writing-table looking at a sort of rough saw made out of a piece of metal.  The hand in which he holds it is gloved, for two fingers are missing.  The chief warder, Wooder, a tall, thin, military-looking man of sixty, with grey moustache and melancholy, monkey-like eyes, stands very upright two paces from him.

The governor. [With a faint, abstracted smile] Queer-looking affair, Mr. Wooder!  Where did you find it?

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Project Gutenberg
Justice from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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