The court reconvened. The room was a little darker, lit only by a dim spotlight.
“Chip the Third,” snarled the judge, “the results are in from the jury. You brought a deformed creature into life, only to condemn it because of said deformity. This creature was yours to care for and tame, and you ended its life. You have been found guilty of attempted murder.”
A bang of the gavel made the statement official.
“Now, the next of your transgressions…” began the judge, before something smashed the doors off their hinges! Quasimodo was alive, and justifiably angry. He leapt into the crowded courtroom, intent on destruction, and grabbed a stunned onlooker, reeling back to kill…
Chip had vaulted over the table before the defendant’s chair. He now stood, in plain sight, across the room from Quasimodo.
“Quasi, stop all this! I’m the one you want, remember? Hurt me all you want, but no one else!”
Chip reached into his blazer pocket and showed a picture of a green baby Norn. “This used to be you, Quasi. I should have tried harder, but I stole this life from you out of adrenaline. Quasimodo, you don’t have to be a monster. And I’m so sorry I made you feel like one. I don’t care what you do to me, but if you kill others out of hating me… Do you really want to become the killer that I was?”
Quasimodo stopped, put the bystander down, stomped up to Chip… And cried. Deep, throaty burbling, accompanied by fat spheres of saltwater from the eyes, as Chip wrapped his arms around the creation he once hated.
“Shhh… I know, Quasi, I know… It’s okay. We’ll be all right…”