When we last left our heroes, they were happily put on the calendar for a September 12 court date… Here follows the continuing saga of:
The Lawsuit Gang!
Unfazed by evil (or confused) people standing in the lobby in front of the siren-guarded voucher table, our heroes trudged forward through the dangerous Fireswamp of Bureaucracy. Whilst others were barked at: “yeah, the line starts this way”, the three purveyors of justice walked straight around – and around – and got in the line, for they had right and good and experience with government idiocy on their side.
Cameraphone girl, challenged by the vile Rastafarian Police Officer (Evil Nesta) to distinguish her phone (which had her PHOTO ID in it) from that of a 60-year-old white-haired guy’s phone (which had his PHOTO ID in it), flashed a grin, released a pointer finger and said, “that’s my phone”. She was empowered -- she’d learned the Evil Nesta’s weakness: Shania Twain, for he was playing it on the radio emblazoned: “Lobby do not remove” [sic].
The brave three continued through the swarm of people, which dissipated when the friendly Fireswamp Security Officer broke the spell: “you don’t have to stand here if you’re not vouchering”.
As Hatandtie Boy went to get some magical gum, Cameraphone Girl and Slightlyoverpanicked Girl decided to take their chances on the ancient hidden stairway.
The gang arrived at the third floor, and were assigned to the Jury Room, where they bravely sat down amongst the piles of frivolous lawsuit-makers.
Hatandtie Boy and Cameraphone Girl engaged in a fairly pointless argument about how hats are different from wigs and why women don’t have to take their wigs off inside but men have to take their hats off. Slightlyoverpanicked Girl stepped in to save the day with the mythical puzzle of the crossed words from the Christian Sabbath edition of the Big City Journal Magazine. Our heroes clenched their jaws and chewed on pens and bit their nails as they filled out one after another of the clues…all was almost lost when Cameraphone girl filled in the right answer into the wrong set of boxes, but just in the nick of time, she noticed and tried to quietly remedy her mistake. She was caught by her comrades, but they forgave her, as is their way.
Finally, the Emperor of the Calendar banged the amplifier to his mic a few dozen times and began speaking. Clearly tired of spouting the same rubbish speech over and over again, he informed everyone how to answer when called and what room they need to be in and when in the same bored, tired and forced voice a flight attendant uses when telling passengers that their seatcushions can also be used as floatation devices.
Time oozed on, and our heroes tried to stay awake despite the lulling sound of the Emperor calling out names of plaintiffs and defendants, most of whom ignored his order to answer not with “here” but by repeating their own names, which then caused the Emperor's rage to grow as his order boomed out again and again from the amplifier: “answer with your name, not here”. Undaunted, the Lawsuit Gang pressed on through their puzzle, trying to unlock the mystery of, um, the puzzle.
The Lawsuit Gang had chosen a civilian name that begins with “W” and were therefore the last to be called. They tried to keep their thoughts of justice pure when a woman threatened to sue the court itself because she almost slipped on water on the floor of room 305. The Emperor finally blessed them with a directive to an inquest, but first they would have to proove themselves in room 509.
Again, our heroes retreated to the ancient stairs, which became more treacherous as they ascended. What awaited them in room 509, they wondered…Cameraphone Girl was beginning to lose interest in the whole stupid ass process, Hatandtie Boy’s thirst for vengeance was piqued and Slightlyoverpanicked Girl was about to change her name to Overpanicked Girl.
The three blasted through the door of the stairwell and marched through the 5th floor corridor. They noticed a smell, and water on the floor. Perhaps these two are connected, Cameraphone Girl thought as she entered the, um, magical WC. Once the three were reunited in room 509, the enemies they would have to defeat became clear. Aside from the various distractions of others in the room who were using justice for their own personal gains, there were, at the front of the room under the “IN GOD WE TRUST” sign, Insanelyslowpaperwork Dude and Iamapparentlyinnorushtogetoutofhere Man.
The heroes were beginning to tire, they had been fighting their battle for over an hour and a half now, and their dinner plans were seemingly going to shit. They wondered if they would ever eat again, see the sunshine again, get to the drinks they were hoping for after the trial.
Slightlyoverpanicked girl realized they were losing strength because of the foul stench in the room. Luckily, just then, in stepped lysolcanbaliff to hose down the entire — entire — room with disinfectant spray. All were saved, except for the horrendous headaches the Lysol caused. Then the rare bulletproof-vested mopkeeper appeared and smeared the offending liquid all over the floor, leaving behind the stench of Lysol and mopwater to intermingle with the original poison.
Meanwhile, Insanelyslowpaperwork Dude and Iamapparentlyinnorushtogetoutofhere Man were alternately doing their jobs inefficiently, yelling at people to get off their cellphones and threatening to send people to “day court”. Upon hearing these words, one of the denizens of night court yelled, “One love! You’re gonna be dead before you get that money!” Our heroes knew they were close to the fire.
Finally, after two hours, Cameraphone Girl, Hatandtie Boy and Slightlyoverpanicked Girl were assigned to the magical kingdom of 507, where they would meet the Beneficent Arbitrator, the only one who could grant them the Rod of Justice.
And so, with a three-minute explanation of the situation, the Beneficent Arbitrator dismissed the lawsuit gang, whose defendants hadn’t even bothered to show up, telling them they’d get a decision in the mail. Hatandtie Boy and Slightlyoverpanicked Girl were disappointed in the anticlimactic resolution, but Cameraphone Girl reminded them: “justice was on our side, we couldn’t lose, we didn’t have to convince anyone of anything”. And the three banded together and walked into the elevator, which had been recently repaired – with duct tape.