Free Fiction Monday: “Trial”
A man stands trial for brutally killing a 12-year-old girl. But does a trial bring actual justice? And what can a father do to deal with the horror?
A heart-wrenching story about those left behind to cope with the aftermath.
“Trial” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is free on this website for one week only. The story’s also available as a standalone from Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and other ebookstores.
Kristine Kathryn Rusch
The free story will be available for one week only. If you missed this one, click on the links above. There’s another free story lurking somewhere around the site. Track the story down, read, and enjoy!
Am nitpicking but shouldn’t there be some form of emotional release for the reader, an ending (no matter how unreal) that allows the father–and the reader–a way to lessen the feeling of overwhelming guilt, unending pain, and total helplessness to save a daughter from the hands of a predator? Ending the story with words like “…knowing deep down that prayers will never get heard, and wishes will never–again–come true….” makes all the unvarnished horror that has gone before sit like a rock in one’s gut, and makes one think no girl should be allowed to leave the house unaccompanied till she has learned some serious man-killing skills. I exaggerate but, well, “Trial” leaves no light at the end of the tunnel, only more darkness.
For me, that lack of emotional release was what made the story. I understand the desire for fiction to be superior to reality, but the reality of such a situation is that there is no light at the end of the tunnel, just more tunnel. I think ‘Trial’ captured that feeling.
I have a second cousin whose wife was found shot dead in her bed. She slept with a loaded revolver under her pillow. The sheriff arrested my cousin even though he had no GSR on him. He did have her blood on him. From holding her body and grieving he said. The evidence was not strong, so the county attorney made a deal for a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity. My cousin spent 3 years in an institution for the criminally insane.
He had four kids. They got split up to various foster homes. I never saw them again.
A family destroyed.
Sometimes the tunnel never ends. That’s what ‘Trial’ is about.