Merry Christmas, Mr. Lorenz (Part XI)

“Congratulations Bill,” Junior said. Bill was sitting on his bunk while overlooking some discharge paperwork. The meeting with the board was to take place the following morning.

“Don’t congratulate me just yet,” Bill replied, “only Dr. Effington has submitted her approval. The board may still turn me down.”

“Poppycock!” Junior retorted, “You have turned into a model inmate. Society will be lucky to have you back.”

“You really think so?”

“Of course! You have taken full advantage of your sentence. You have changed more than any other inmate I can think of.”

“I should have! 10 years is a long time!”

“And I must confess,” Junior added as he lowered his voice, “like you, I was skeptical of the revolution. But seeing how you improved so much, it really makes me feel like I’m doing the right thing here.”

Bill put down the paperwork and walked up to Junior at the cell door. “You are doing the right thing, Junior,” he said, “you’ve been a good friend to me. Thank you for all you’ve done.”

Junior gave a slight smile. “Perhaps we’ll run into each other on the outside,” he replied.

“Perhaps we will.”


“William Longsdale Lorenz has been serving in the Northwest Colorado Correctional Facility for 10 years,” the board chairman stated, “he was convicted for the murder of 19 people during a terrorist attack on a federal building in Billings, Montana…two of whom were children…during his time with the Whisper Militia. After his conviction, Mr. Lorenz stated that his actions were purely political as he believed that, quote ‘the reformed federal government, post revolution, was illegitimate’, end quote. After Mr. Lorenz’s apprehension, the remaining members of the Whisper Militia were arrested and sentenced. Thanks to the pioneering work of Dr. Gabriella Effington, Mr. Lorenz asserts that he has been fully rehabilitated. Today’s objective is to evaluate Mr. Lorenz’s suitability for discharge. Are there any questions?”

One council member spoke up. “Yes. Mr. Lorenz, how do you currently feel about your actions with the militia?”

Bill sat up straight in his seat. He gave a brief moment of reflection before answering. “Well,” he began, “the judge told me at my sentencing that he hoped the thoughts of my victims stay with me till the day I died. And I think about them every day. My activities with that group of terrorist…and they were terrorist…was misguided. My parents were gone at an early age and all I had was my grandfather. The only things I knew of the world was what he showed me. He lived in a small world with small ideas. He saw the future and only saw the end. But he was wrong. That’s not an excuse, I take full responsibility for my actions. But I thank the powers that be for living in a future that gives me a second chance. Most people in history were never given that opportunity. So to answer your question, I feel nothing but shame in regards to my time with the militia. I had misplaced anger that I projected onto the world. Thanks to the efforts of this facility, and Dr. Effington in particular, I’ve realized that about myself and I will do everything in my power to remedy my past and contribute to this brave new society.”


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