“Mr. Mitchell, I’m very glad you decided to join us this morning.” The Judge’s vocal tone and facial expression did not reflect gladness to John Mitchell, but then he was used to society’s collective sarcasm.
“It seems I ran out of choices, Your Honor.”
Mitchell stood in the center of a room. The room had few features. There was a platform in front of him, behind which sat the three Judges of the Tribunal. The room was only semi-illuminated, except for where he stood, which was brilliantly lit by a spotlight, where he stood alone. He knew this day would come, no matter how much he tried to put it off.
“I assume you know the charges against you Mr. Mitchell, but for the sake of the record, I will read them.” The judge sitting in the center looked down at her paperwork.
“Mr. John Quentin Mitchell, you stand accused of failing to comply with the life span progression initiative, whereby all male, white, het-cis-gender citizens will, on their 60th birthday, report to the progression center for processing and termination.”
The Judge looked back up at Mitchell. “This is the most serious charge against you, but certainly not the only one.”
“I understand, Your Honor.”
“You have repeatedly ignored multiple digital and hardcopy summons from the progression center and this court to report. You are eight months late, and this court has run out of patience.”
“It seems, Your Honor, that I have run out of time and, as I said before, choices.”
“Mr. Mitchell, it would not have been necessary to have law enforcement threaten to arrest your…” the Judge looked down at her notes for a moment, and then looked back at Mitchell. “…two sons, one daughter, and one daughter-in-law if you had obeyed the legal order of this court to report to the progression center for processing, now would it.”