James was out of the country for two months since the xenophobic attack and also the burial of his friend justice. He was still grieving; many times Justice appeared in his dreams saying “It’s not your fault it was my time to die.” Even Justice’s family was saying was not his fault.

As he was coming back to Arbonia from his own country Dune, he had memories of the time they were together for the first time as new comers. While he was entertaining the thoughts a voice interrupted him, it was the taxi driver.

“Pardon?” said James his mind coming back to reality.

“I can see you are in deep thought, i asked where do you get off?” shouted driver in loud voice as if he was three kilos away from James.

James was terrified. His mind was clouded with fear of natives and he was still traumatized by the xenophobic attacks. He stammered “Ca-ca-ca- Cantberg West,”

“Really?” the driver was surprised as if Cantberg was in space. “I heard that two people were killed brutally there. It must be a danger zone, for…” the driver’s cell phone rang, interrupting him. James was relieved; he wanted to forget about the incident. Fortunately the driver spoke on phone until James reached his destination.

As he was getting nearer to his shack, he noticed there were a lot of boot-marks and tyre traces. In the shack he found papers scattered all over.

“The paper must have gained access through the space under the door. I will read them later,” he said to himself.

Suddenly there was a knock. He opened and found a man wearing shiny black boots, and black trousers made of a hard fabric, a white shirt which had metal stars on the shoulders and a cap.

“I’m Inspector Barry,” said the man in a very serious tone.

“Is there anything I can do for you officer?” asked James.

Yes there is, I am looking for Mr. James Nora, I was told that he is residing here. Do you know him?” said Barry.

“You are talking to James, James Nora, spill the beans,” James replied with confidence.

The officer took handcuff from a belt-clip around hips. “Mr. Nora, you under arrest for the premeditated murder of justice Moro.”

James was extremely shocked.

“What? Wait? Are you saying? That I killed my friend? No! Tell me I am dreaming. I swear I never killed a human being,” tears were now streaming down his cheeks.

“Mr. Nora, you have the right to remain silent, so turn your back against me so that I can handcuff you,” said the officer heartlessly.

James slept in a cell for three days waiting for his bail application; this was because he was arrested on Friday. Monday came, the court gallery was full. The magistrate came and the court orderly ordered everyone to rise and sit after the magistrate had sat. Fortunately the court started with James’ case.

“Case number 342 of 2010, state vs. James Nora,” said the prosecutor.

The court orderly went to the waiting room to escort James into the court room. The prosecutor continued.

“This is a bail application. The accused is charged with two counts, first premeditated murder and second, assault with intention to cause grievous bodily harm.” The prosecutor was talking standing adjacent to the magistrate, opposite the stenographer.

“Is it first appearance?” asked the magistrate.

The prosecutor turned to the magistrate and nodded. “Yes, your worship,”

“What is your language preference?” asked the magistrate looking at James.

“English, Your Honour,” James replied.

“You have three rights as an accused but you will only choose one. Namely you’re entitled to have your own legal representative which will be at your own cost, you can apply for state ones which will cost you nothing. And lastly you can conduct your own defense; this is to say without a lawyer. Do you understand Mr. Nora?” said the magistrate.

“I do understand, Your Honour,” said James.

The magistrate asked; “So, which option do you take?”

“Own defense, Your Honour,” James said out of ignorance.

“Alright. Council you can continue with the bail application proceedings,” said the magistrate referring to the Public Prosecutor.

“As the court pleases Your Worship,” said the prosecutor.

He asked questions back and forth. The questioning was concerning his circumstances, proving that James does not deserve to get bail. Eventually he represented arguments to the magistrate saying that the accused is a flight risk therefore if he could be granted bail it would destroy the effort of the investigating officers.

The court indeed did not grant him bail. This meant he will remain in the cells until the case was tried.

The court orderly took him back to cells. He wished he could tell how bad the inmates have treated him but the way he was cross-examined surely nobody would believe him. He was mixed with criminals of different offences.

When it was cold they would take his blankets even his warm food away from him. If he spoke he would be beaten brutally. He tried to inform the authorities but they did nothing about it. Days, weeks passed he was only wishing the court could realize and see he is innocent. Nevertheless, the trial day arrived.

“Your worship, I would like to call a witness to the stand,” said the prosecutor and the magistrate nodded. The prosecutor called their witness and the court orderly went outside and came back with him.

By that time James was thinking would the so called investigating officer tell the truth or false truth to the court? Because the truth is I was asleep the day justice was killed. His thoughts were interrupted by the voice of the investigator being sworn in.

After stating his name for the record, his address and his occupation, the prosecutor asked ordinary questions, about his experience, to make the investigator comfortable.

“What linked the accused to the murder?” the prosecutor finally got to point.

“It is couple of things,” said the investigator.

“What do you mean couple things? Elaborate please,”

The investigator opened files, wore his eyes glass and cleared his throat.

“First the deceased was about to be promoted. It was a matter of signature and the accused also had the same qualification as the deceased. So we assume jealousy made the accused to hire people to kill him and make it as if it was a xenophobic attack. Secondly we found that the accused was an heir or beneficiary of the deceased life insurance. Thirdly the most alarming thing is the accused was nowhere to be found the after deceased was killed.”

James didn’t want to cross examine so the investigating officer was excused after his testimony.


What do you think will happen next?