The King and Queen consulted together briefly then the King turned ‘Whereas we realize that the disloyalty of the said subject was at least partly due to an unbalanced mind, it is a very grave crime that he has perpetrated and an example must be made of him that will not be forgotten. Regrettably we must pass sentence of death. Have you anything to say before you leave this court, Gardener Lodden?’
Lodden composed himself as much as he could, ‘Your majesty,’ he croaked, ‘What will become of my little bipeds? You wouldn't hurt them, would you?’
‘Er, Er....’ said the King in surprise. The Queen almost exploded with rage.
‘These vermin must be exterminated before they do any further damage.’
To Lodden's amazement Feltondyte was on his feet saying, ‘Madam, you exceed your authority. You may have power of life and death over my client and all of us your servants, but genocide is outside your jurisdiction.’
By now The Queen was almost apoplectic with rage. She lurched towards a control panel, depressing a master key, and she started to give orders into the intercom microphone. ‘Ventor guards....’
Feltondyte continued against a background of shocked hush, ‘I appeal to the galactic overlords to give a just judgment on this matter.
The Queen was trying to control the situation, ‘Ventor guards arrest, arrest, arrest.’
The Ventor guards turned with their hands on their stun guns heaving through their helmets ‘Arrest, arrest, arrest.’
Lodden and the others in the courtroom followed Feltondyte's gaze as he stood with his proboscis outstretched towards the sacred sphere. Almost imperceptibly the sphere was swelling and the gentle glow became brighter and brighter. Then it slowly started to drop downwards towards the platform where the royal couple sat with the Queen still repeating in an exaggerated monotone ‘Arrest, arrest, arrest,’ whilst the King sat motionless with a look of mild surprise frozen on his face. As the sphere slowly enveloped the royal couple, the Queen's voice became indistinct and finally faded. The sphere was now so brilliant that Gardener Lodden could not bear to look at it and some of the delicate Sentons were whimpering with pain. For a few seconds the low-pitched hum of the sphere became a high pitched sound before the whole series of events was reversed. The sphere slowly lifted away from the platform to reveal the King and Queen bathed in a diffuse silvery light. They remained perfectly motionless until the sphere had regained it's former position.
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