Stories by Mail, Day 25 – Laughter is the best mutation

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“Your Honor, we have the policy sheet from Ms. Kahan identified and marked,” Miranda Galloway said confidently, a slim black folder resting in her hand. She rose from the defendant’s table and had taken only a handful of steps before she paused. Her nose twitched. “Um, I would offer to Madam Clerk this….this, uh–”  She clamped her eyes shut as a vociferous sneeze thundered from her nostrils.  “I’m so sorry,” the self-assured attorney said quietly, and then giggled. A baffled look swept over her face. She inhaled deeply. “As I was saying, I would offer to Mad–” Another sneeze rocketed through her body, jolting her forward. She fought to contain her laughter.

The plaintiff, Dominique Smart, had maintained a spotless driving record and successfully avoided jury duty for decades, and she did not appreciate the gaiety unfolding in front of her. She motioned to her attorney, but as she leaned close, her throat tickled and a sharp sneeze slipped out. “Sorry. I…don’t have a cold?”, she squeaked out. Her worried expression shifted into a smile. She’d never realized how silly her voice sounded.

“Order,” The Honorable Rachel Livingston-Moody warned, thwacking her gavel threateningly. “I will have–”

She sniggered as her urge to sneeze soared.


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