Fantasy Fiction

Murder Most Fowl—George Davis

  Henry Hawk pointed his wing at Carol Cluck who, in turn, pointed to Henrietta Henderson. “She, Carol Cluck, murdered young Charlie Chick that was still in his mother’s shell,” Henry Hawk shouted. “I saw her do it. I am a witness.” 

  “Wait just a minute,” Humpty Dumpty said. “I am the judge here, Mr. Hawk, and you will wait until you have been called, to speak.” 

  “I’m sorry, Your Honor. Even so, I saw her do it.” 

  “One more word from you, and I’ll hold you in contempt. Do you understand, Mr. Hawk?” 

  “Yes, Your Honor, but…” 

  “Not one more word do I want to hear from you. Now, Mr. Nester, you may call your first witness.” 

  “Thank you, Your Honor. I call, Robert Rooster to the stand.” 

  “Did you witness the murder, Mr. Rooster?” 

  “No, I did not. Mr. Henry Hawk brought it to my attention around ten that morning. He said he saw Carol Cluck take young Chick, still in his shell, and…dash it to pieces against the wall.” 

  “To your knowledge, does Mr. Hawk always tell the truth on such matters?” 

  “No, Henry Hawk is a known liar. Isn’t this why we are having this trial to prove, one way or the other, Carol Cluck’s innocence or guilty?” 

  At eleven fifty, Judge Dumpty said, “Since it is almost noontime, the court is adjourned until two this afternoon.” He banged his gavel on the makeshift bench, an overturned milk crate. 

  “Cross-examine, Mr. Cooper?” The judge asked Carol Cluck’s attorney, Edggar Cooper. 

  “No cross, Your Honor.” 

  “Call your next witness, Mr. Prosecutor,” the judge said. 

  “I call Doctor Yolk to the stand. Doctor, you did an autopsy on the deceased, did you not?” Nester asked. 

  “I did.” 

  “Can you tell the jury what you found?” 

  “Yes, young Charles Chick was murdered by blunt force trauma due to violent destruction. He was not given a chance to become president of the United Coop of Hen Town nor was he afforded the chance to be a great movie star, or opera great. His heinous actions denied this young chick's life.”

  “Thank you, Doctor. Your witness,” Nester said. 

  Cooper rose to his feet and adjusted the belt around his rather colossal girth. “Doctor, was there any sign of fowl play? I mean couldn’t he have been simply dropped by the…egg collector?” 

  “I have no idea. All I know is young Charles Chick was brutally attacked, and death ensued. His death was instantaneous.” 

  “Thank you, Doctor. That will be all.” 

  “Call your next witness, Mr. Prosecutor.” 

  “I call, Mr. Al Bumin to the stand.” Bumin sworn in, Nester walked to the witness stand, dropped his glasses to the end of his nose, and looked at the witness. “Mr. Bumin, please tell the court what you know of this crime.” 

  “Well, I can’t say as I saw anything, but Miss Cluck was doin’ an awful lotta talk around the hen house that morning. I heard her say, she was glad that she was able to get revenge on Miss Peep’s stealing her rooster.” 

  “Did you hear her threaten Miss Peep, Mr. Bumin?” 

  “No, but you have a dead Chick, don’t you? And, you have a star witness do you not?” 

  “Yes, I do, and I will call him to the stand prematurely, thanks to you. No more questions.” 

  “I have no questions for this witness, Your Honor,” 

  “Since it is four o’clock,” Judge Dumpty said. “The court is adjourned until nine tomorrow morning.” 

 The coop was noisy. The press was there to get interviews. Gordon Gosling, the star reporter for the Coop Cage Herald, questioned the members. Of the thirty-four hens and one rooster he talked with, each one blamed the other with the exception of Henrietta Henderson. She still maintained Carol Cluck murdered Charlie Chick, the name his mother gave him when she learned she was pregnant. She would name her chick, Carla if it had been a hen chick. 

  Monday morning, Ned Nester called a surprise witness to the stand, a sly-looking creature by the name of Willie Weasel. The entire courthouse was filled with incessant clucking despite the gavel-pounding judge who promised to clear the courtroom if the noise continued. 

  “I know, Mr. Weasel you are feared among the citizens of this community, and I have your sworn statement you will not attack anyone in this courtroom. Is that factual, Mr. Weasel?” 

  “Yeah, I said I wouldn’t do nothin’ to none of ‘em, but that don’t mean it isn’t hard for me to sit here among all these delicious folks and not salivate a little.” 

  “Salivate away, Mr. Weasel, but please tell the jury what you remember about the day of the murder.” “I was mindin’ my own business, just looking through the knot hole on the coop’s orange crate door, and I seen that old hen over there pickin’ up an egg and dashing it against the wooden nest.” 

  “Thank you, Mr. Weasel. Your witness, Cooper.” 

  “Mr. Weasel, you say you saw Miss Cluck pick up the shell and throw it against the nest. Is that right?” 

  “I said it didn’t I? And if I said it. I meant it.” 

  “Okay, Mr. Weasel. How do you know it was my client? It is hard to tell one of these hens from another. I can’t tell them apart. How can you?” 

  “Er…that hen’s got one black feather on her left side. That’s how I know it was her.” 

  “So, let me get this straight. You were looking through a knot hole through the door, and you saw Miss Cluck that has one black feather on her left side, throw the egg?” 

  “Yeah, that’s right.” 

  “I say, it is a lie. If you were looking through the hole through the door, you would have seen only her right side. He left would have been out of your sight, Mr. Weasel.” 

  “Er…okay, so I can’t finger the hen. They all look alike.” Nester shook his head hanging it in defeat. 

  “That’s all with this witness, Your Honor,” Cooper said. “I ask for an adjournment. The State has no case. They have failed to produce one single trace of evidence against my client.” Nester jumped to his feet. “Your Honor, it should be quite clear. Miss Cluck is guilty. She had a grudge against the young Chick’s mother.” 

  “Mr. Nester,” the judge said. “One cannot be guilty by the testimony of so few witnesses. Especially without being able to witness one single hen in a coop housing ten-thousand hens and chicks, oh, and a few roosters. I have no choice but to rule for the defendant. Case dismissed.” 

 This story was told eggsactly as it was hatched several weeks ago in the records of the court.

September 27, 2022 15:30

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Lucy Starr
20:20 Oct 06, 2022

great story! very creative!!


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Mustang Patty
18:06 Oct 01, 2022

LOL - thank you for this bit of whimsy. I'd read a few serious stories before this, and I needed to take a breath of fresh air. Good luck in the contest. ~MP~


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