I’d been out late the night before and really hadn’t felt too inclined to try to look put together that morning. Living on the far end of my county line, Jury Duty meant having to drive an hour to the “Hall of Justice,” and potentially sit through hours of nothing before the hour drive home.
It’s not that I was fond of going to work, but at least then I knew when my day would end.
I threw on a pair of jeans, a black tank-top, a grey sweater and pulled my hair into a bun at the top of my head. Today wasn’t a day for hairbrushes or makeup.
I arrived about 10 minutes after my call time of 8am, but they hadn’t finalized the checking in process. I was the last juror to be checked in before they started the orientation video.
It reminded me of the sexual harassment training videos I used to be subjected to back in the 1990s. Feathered hair, pearls, shoulder pads. It was a 90s video that looked like it was made in the 80s.
I’d been dozing off some time after the morning break when I heard them call my name.
I’d sat on a jury before. It was a civil case that only lasted two days. I’d hoped to get out of this day without having to go into a courtroom at all.
I made my way to the courtroom and sat down. I was tired. In my rush to get out of the house on time, I’d not had any coffee.
When the judge entered the room, I perked up a little. He was…well, he was kind of hot. He came in with a smile and a sexy beard and the big flowy robe and it just felt like everyone in the room responded to his authority.
Yeah. Put a subbie girl in a courtroom with a hot, young, charismatic judge. This is going to go well. I suddenly felt very aware of my disheveled state. I could have at least put on some mascara or lip gloss. I self consciously undid the bun and ran my fingers through my hair, untangling the knots inspired by bedhead.
It looked like a domestic battery case. The questions they were asking during the jury selection process had to do with abuse. When it was my turn, the lawyer asked “Have you ever been hit or sexually assaulted by a man?”
Well, fuck. I’m under oath. I’d had spent the previous evening being slapped around and manhandled by a friend.
“Um…with or without consent?”
I was immediately excused by the judge to go back into the jury pool where I would have to sit and wait for an unknown number of hours.
When the lunch break came around, I couldn’t wait to get out of the building. I followed a crowd of people toward a shopping center with multiple restaurants and selected the one that looked the least crowded.
I’d just been served my ice water when the judge walked in.
I know I blushed. I must have blushed hard enough to alter the temperature in the building, because he turned and looked right at me.
He came over to my table. “May I sit?”
WOULD IT HAVE KILLED ME TO PUT ON A DRESS THIS MORNING?
He sat down across from me in the booth and leaned back. He wasn’t smiling with his lips, but his eyes were definitely showing a hint of mischief.
“You know why I had to release you from my courtroom?” he asked.
“No.” I had an idea, but I wasn’t really sure.
“I’ve seen you.”
I wasn’t expecting that. “Seen me?”
“Yes. I’ve read your stuff. I even saw you post this morning that you had to go to jury duty, but of course I never imagined…”
“Oh.” I was turning red again. “Are we friends?”
“No,” he answered. “I never added you. I don’t add many. This job…-”
We chatted for a while. I started to feel a little more relaxed as he did. We made jokes about pervertables in the courtroom.
The allotted lunch time was ending and I had to start walking back.
“Do you have somewhere to be after your day here is over?”
I thought – laundry, cats, shower, masturbation….
“Nope,” I answered.
He pulled out his phone. “Call me when your day is over. I’ll show you my chambers.”
“What?” he asked.
“You’re so gonna fuck me with a gavel.” I laughed jokingly.
He stood up, leaned over the table and whispered in my ear, “I so am.”