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The Orthogonal Galaxy

By Michael Lewis All Rights Reserved ©

Adventure / Scifi

Chapter 1

In a quiet alcove of the federal courthouse in Atlanta, Georgia, a middle-aged man stared out of a rain-splattered window.  His dark hair was betrayed by streaks of gray on either side of his head.  Although a model of physical fitness, he leaned against the wall for support while watching the heavy rain that splashed down on the sidewalk five stories below.  He watched as cars drove by purposefully and pedestrians with umbrellas dashed along trying to avoid the streams of water that rushed off into the street.  Occasionally, his focus was directed to the window as beads of water raced erratically down the glass pane.

While he stood in this motionless position, he envied every car, bus, taxi, pedestrian, and—yes, even the lone bicyclist—in their ability to travel to their intended destinations.  How he would have traded positions with any one of them.  Even the bicycle was a symbol of freedom that he currently was not able to enjoy.  How much longer that privilege would escape him was up to a jury of seven men and six women who had just settled into the courtroom not far away.

“Paol?” a soft voice from behind him blended smoothly with the subtle sound of rain splashing against the window.  It was so soft that the distracted man completely missed it.

The sound of heels clicking on the polished tile floor grew louder as they approached the man, but even this noise did nothing to arouse him from his thoughts.  Only when a gentle hand was placed on his shoulder did he turn with a start.

“It’s time, Sweetheart.”  The gentle words were warm and encouraging in spite of the façade.  Paol knew that his wife was agonizing ever so much as he was, and while he was grateful for her strength, he ached to know that she had to carry this burden so gracefully.

As his bloodshot eyes gazed into her smiling face, a corner of his mouth turned up sadly.  With a deep breath, he held out his arm.  She received it happily and turned towards a man that had been waiting at the back of the room.

“We’ll beat this, Paol!  I’m confident that if there are any on the jury who are yet unconvinced, they will be on our side before the end of the day.” 

Wearing a dark pin-striped suit, well-pressed white shirt, and cobalt blue tie, the lawyer was dressed as confidently as he sounded.  Spinning around, he walked with deliberate poise down the hall.  Following his lead, the couple pursued the man and disappeared into courtroom number 523.

As he crossed the threshold, he contracted some of the encouragement of his defender.  After all, Paol Joonter knew that he was innocent of the charges filed against him.  Surely, the best judicial system in the world could not make the wrong decision.

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Jasmine Chow: As I read this story, I was reminded some what of Terry Pratchett, especially some descriptions of politics and economics. The sci-fic setting is quite intriguing. Writing style is quite lovely and grew on me slowly. I was also slightly reminded of Mark Twain, especially his book A Connecticut Ya...

Steve Lang: I thought this story was imaginative, and well thought out. I also think it was an original piece, and not a rehash of previous scifi stories I've read in the past.Thank you for the effort put into this tale, and I look forward to reading more of your work!

PaulSenkel: If you like Arthur C. Clarke's Odyssey, especially The Final Odyssey, then you will probably also enjoy this book. I definitely did.It does, however, address a more adolescent public than the above-mentioned book.I enjoyed the story and finished it in a few days. The overall situation on earth an...

Tiffany Thomson: This story is not something I would normally pick up and read but I'm so glad I did, I wasn't able to put it down and my husband was yelling at me at 3am to put it down and go to bed (just waited for him to doze back off before picking it back up) I really hope Natalie brings out another book eit...

MavisMcQueen: "To Live Again" is a well crafted, highly engaging, heart vibrating tale surrounding our favorite Elven King. The author will keep you engrossed until the very end and by that time you will feel so strongly for Clara and the other characters that you will never want it to end...like ever. Thrandu...

MegaRogueLegend666: I love this story so much. It's impossible to describe my excitement with each new chapter in words. The author has such a good writing style, very good descriptions of the fighting and character descriptions/emotions. the plot is also amazing! This fanfic could be a side anime show or novel ......

Prasino45: Hi! I happen to see your updated chapter on FF.NET!It happened to be about you coming onto Inkitt with this story! I've been a fan for a while! I'm a scqualphie writer myself. I ship them HARD! Love this story! I'm gonna do a reread as you said you changed some things! Glad we both made the switc...

internathunal: I was held captive by your sense of style. I would love to see more from you. I enjoyed this immensely.

Roger A. Fauble: Excellent read, the only thing not to like is that I could only read it at home on my computer. I'm a character reader, I get into the characters, their story, who/what they are. In this story characters are introduced and developed allowing you to really get into them. Next the story is develop...

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