Is Justice Ever Blind? - Printable Version

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Is Justice Ever Blind? - Maximilian Chase - 15 Oct 2018

Aside from enjoying the sophisticated atmosphere, the appeal of dining at Norman's in the Ritz-Carlton was that the people who could actually afford to eat here didn't get star-struck at seeing prominent people, which was why Max had suggested this particular restaurant for dinner. Dining with the mayor had become a fairly regular thing for the judge, since their second or third meeting, when Max had learned about her displeasure at having the Guardians in her city, Max realized that he had found someone else within the city's politics who believed just as he did. Truly, it was refreshing to meet someone and not have to listen to the fake adoration of the guardians and their ridiculous queen.

Following the hostess back to the table that Max had reserved, he had specifically asked for one towards the back, away from all the commotion of the dining room. Sure, it might brew rumors from a few people who had nothing better to do in their days than gossip about everything, but Max had no romantic interest in the mayor and didn't care about false rumors being spread. He simply preferred an area where he could speak without the whole world hearing him and trying to turn it into a headline for the next day's paper, which was already bad enough.

Sitting at the far end of the table so Max could see if the Mayor was coming, he ordered an Old Fashioned while he was waiting, pulling out a folding tablet from the inside pocket of his black suit. Opening the tablet, Max brought up the news, the headlines still covering the explosion and only the explosion. Today the headline read "Sailor Jupiter's Restaurant Damaged in Explosion; Coincidence?" Shaking his head at the headline as the waiter dropped off the drink, he heard the younger man's voice from over his shoulder.

"Shame isn't it? That someone who does such good for the city now has to endure that?" It was clear that the young man had read the headline over Max's shoulder, and the judge glanced up at the guy, simply nodding in response. This was the problem with the people that usually surrounded Max, and this was why he always enjoyed these small meals with the Mayor. It wasn't like they could publicly sit around and talk poorly of the guardians, that wouldn't do well if anyone passing nearby heard, but they could discuss the state of the city and how their presence was handling it. It was, after all, the job of both of them to ensure that everyone stayed safe, which wasn't so easy following a terrorist attack in their own city.

Max being followed by one of the guardians wasn't helping either, and he was sure to express his annoyance to Lilith about that tonight. As if the Guardian had any right telling him how to do his job. Wasn't it enough that she got to play vigilante and decide who was the bad guy and who was the good guy? All while using powers that could seriously harm someone, just like a bad guy? It was interesting how they always saw themselves above the rules, because they were 'guardians', but what truly separated them from anyone else? After having one of them trying to use her notoriety to practically threaten a judge, Max didn't see that there was any difference.

Removing the jacket of his suit and putting it over the chair back behind him, Max re-positioned his maroon tie, smoothing it back down as he glanced up to see his companion coming to join him. Raising the tablet and turning it for her to see the headline too, Max stood up as she neared the table. "Have you seen this?" Handing her the tablet, Max moved to pull her chair out for her.

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Lilith Rey - 19 Oct 2018

The evening out with Max was one of the few things she had to look forward to recently. As the Mayor, Lilith was often preoccupied and difficult to catch, but she had always made sure to make enough room to eat out with Max. Unfortunately, today she almost couldn’t–she was just about ready to cancel when she decided to cancel on another appointment instead, one that particularly dealt with the explosion.

Lilith had had enough of the scandalous queen and her destined king, and she’d known right away that that particular meeting was going to lead straight to that. She was beginning to feel as though she couldn’t lie about her opinions any longer. It was becoming too much, especially with the Black Moon’s activities leading to desires to hear the Mayor’s opinion.

So, without further thought on the matter, Lilith drove her Lexus to the Ritz-Carlton hotel, grateful for Max’s desire to have a private conversation. Paying the valet, Lilith left the keys with him, and went off into Norman’s restaurant to be greeted by the hostess. 

“Hello, how many? Do you have a reservation?”

“Yes, actually. I’m here with the Chase party.” 

“Right this way, Madam Mayor.”
With that, the hostess led Lilith to Max’s table, and she greeted him with a smile as he got up from his own seat to help her get seated.

Lilith was just about to say thank you to Max for helping her into her seat when she saw him hold up his tablet, turning her head away as she scoffed.

Not this again! Lilith internally thought, wondering just when the Sailor Guardians were going to stop plaguing the city. No, it wasn’t a coincidence that the Black Moon had just so happened to choose a marketplace holding a Sailor Guardian’s restaurant for their explosion. She fully believed that it was intentional, that it spoke volumes about what the Black Moon were trying to do.

It was another reason that made this so personal for them. Lilith wasn’t fond of the idea of Sailor Guardians owning businesses in her city for that particular reason, as it was easily a way for terrorists to target those locations and cause much damage. It was unfortunate that the Crystal Palace itself was an impenetrable fortress, as she would have personally liked to see it crumble.

“Yes, I’ve been informed of it numerous times, Max.” Lilith informed him, moving to grab her napkin to place it on her lap as she’d further tuck her seat into the table. “There should be a law preventing Sailor Guardians from owning businesses until the Black Moon are properly dealt with.”

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Maximilian Chase - 22 Oct 2018

Pushing Lilith's chair towards the table as she sat down, Max returned to his seat, across the table from her. It was obvious right away that she wasn't thrilled by the article, but Max hadn't been thrilled by the article either, however, it was still a reality. Was that business being targeted? If it was, then they needed to do something about it, because Max was not interested in spending the next several months sitting on the bench and presiding over cases that involved the Sailor Guardians.

"I don't anticipate any laws would matter to them anyway. Just a few days ago the small one, Saturn I think, was in my chambers trying to intimidate me because she didn't like my ruling in a case. I do hope that she was later upset to learn that I'm not so easily intimidated."

Things had been weird for Max lately, having run into the sailor guardian twice, he was beginning to worry that she was actually stalking him. He was planning to give it a bit more time before trying to take action, but until then, he was trying to keep clear of anything illegal. That made tonight a perfect night to meet with Lilith for dinner, it gave Max something to do that no one could try and claim was illegal. She had no stakes in any of the cases he was currently presiding over, and unless they caught the people actually responsible for the explosion and not just a symbol, there weren't going to be any high profile cases anytime soon.

Taking a drink of his Old Fashioned, Max tucked the tablet back into the pocket of his suit jacket. "If it was a deliberate attack on that business specifically though, that's a huge safety concern for the city. The latest I saw was 13 dead and over 30 injured. By the time this whole thing is finished, I'm sure there will be more dead."

Leaning back against the chair he sat in, Max could only anticipate how this was going to end, and it wouldn't be good. However, if more people thought that the attack was specifically about a guardian, then perhaps more people would begin to see that their presence wasn't helping anyone at all.

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Lilith Rey - 29 Oct 2018

“She tried to what? Lilith didn’t finish her sentence, she only glared firmly at Max when she listened to him speak. She wasn’t pleased with the outcome and she didn’t like that he even let it happen. “The next time she tries to intimidate you, I demand that you use the security team to escort her out. We are not about to be intimidated by a bunch of vigilantes in skirts when we are the law. The next time I hear that, tell her to talk to the Mayor.”

Lilith was annoyed. She wanted a drink, she really did. Was this really what the world had come to? To where that the Sailor Guardians believed that they had such power over them simply because they were all-powerful? They might’ve been humans with no powers, but that shouldn’t have mattered. They had to stand their ground and that was what Lilith fully intended to do.

When their waitress came by promptly and offered to get them drinks, Lilith ordered a lemon drop martini before refocusing her attention to the menu. She still continued to listen to Max, but she was irritated.

She hadn’t told anyone this, but she wasn’t getting enough sleep as she’d ought to. Nightmares were plaguing her sleep, she felt as though she was being haunted by a demon. But that was her own personal problems, not Max’s. She was here to take a little break from it all, even if they were talking about issues that needed to be dealt with, it was nice to have an ear.

“And that’s our job to find out. I’m more intrigued that so much time has passed and there’s been no retaliation from the other terrorist group, the Dark Kingdom.” Lilith said calmly. “Have you managed to get any word from any of the Sailor Guardians aside from the little one?”

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Maximilian Chase - 29 Oct 2018

Picking up his drink, Max took a drink while he let the information sink into Lilith, which didn't take long as the mayor rightly was outraged. Max had been outraged too during the actual encounter, but he had been ever more upset that it was his second encounter with the girl, like she was following him. Of course, it was a silly idea, because if she even had an inkling that she knew who he really was, then she wouldn't have left his side for a second, just waiting for him to foul up.

"That's fine in theory, but not something practical to actually fulfill. The world considers them to be above reproach, and it would end up in the media as my word against hers without any proof. And I'll be damned if I have to put cameras in my own chambers. This wasn't my first run-in with her specifically either, which makes me wonder what her fascination with me is. Sadly for her, I don't have the same feelings towards her, I don't even know her name, nor do I care to know."

However, Max had been wondering more about her, and the weapon that she carried. It had given him a vision of somewhere else, somewhere darker than Earth, and Max could only assume it was her planet, Saturn. Touching her hand had produced a spark-like feeling for him, and he wondered if her powers contained some sort of electrical energy. So long as she stayed out of his life, however, Max didn't care about her.

As the waitress returned with Lilith's drink, Max watched as her hand trembled every so slightly in setting it down in front of Lilith, as though she were intimidated by serving the mayor. Smirking, Max picked up the menu, waiting for Lilith to order her food first. Making eye contact with the waitress as Lilith finished, Max smiled to her. "I'll start with the pan-seared annatto scallops, followed by the filet mignon. And another Old Fashioned." Handing the menu back to the waitress, Max finished his first drink while he waited for the waitress to get just out of earshot.

"You make her nervous." Leaning back in his chair slightly, Max shook his head from side to side. "Just the encounter with the one, thankfully. The Dark Kingdom seems to be hardly a blip on the radar, which is the problem I assume. If the Black Moon is making grand gestures, then I suspect the Dark Kingdom may be behind the rise in unsolved murders."

Keeping a stoic face while he talked about the Dark Kingdom, Max had no qualms about lying to his friend, especially about his double life. If Lilith suspected anything, she hadn't mentioned it, and that was why Max didn't think she had a clue. Lilith's dislike of the Guardians was no secret to him, and there had been plenty of times when they were in a room alone and she could have asked him outright if he had a role in the Dark Kingdom, but she never did.

"What is your next move now that the explosion site is getting cleaned up?"

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Lilith Rey - 02 Nov 2018

“Do you think I care about that?” Lilith looked at Max sternly. “They are in the House of Law. They ought to abide by it like everybody else and set an example. Letting one little girl get away with it is not okay. The Queen would be held to the highest regard in the House of Law.”

Lilith didn’t like what the world was coming to, it and it was slowly opening her eyes. “She might also be stalking you as well, have you considered that?” Briefly, Lilith wondered the possibility if that girl was within the restaurant. But she wasn’t about to become paranoid. Not over a runt Sailor Guardian.

Lilith paid no mind to the trembling waitress. She was used to it, really, as she had gone to many restaurants with young, easily intimidated waitresses. She allowed Max to order first, casually glancing at the menu before deciding on her order. When she was younger, Lilith wasn’t a wealthy woman like she was now–she had to earn every penny she made. She was proud to be able to spend as much as she was able. 

“I’ll have the house salad, followed by the Black Trumpet “Ashed” American Wagyu 6 oz.” Closing the menu, Lilith handed the menu to the waitress. Once she was gone and she heard Max’s remark, she shrugged her shoulders. “I intimidate a lot of people. It’s my job, just as it’s yours, is it not?”

“I presume the Dark Kingdom will be a problem in the foreseeable future.” She informed him calmly, taking a sip of her lemon drop martini. “That’s the problem with two rival factions, when one faction steps up and becomes a problem, the other must retaliate and show that they mean business as well. But why are you suspecting that they’re behind the unsolved murders? Because of those demons they posses?”

It was strange, the Youma that the Dark Kingdom had. Why were they able to create such when the Black Moon couldn’t? 

“My next move? As I have spoken to Malin, I plan on speaking to Charlie and putting those Guardians in their place. What is your advice?”

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Maximilian Chase - 08 Nov 2018

"I don't like it either, but I also don't like being hanged by the court of public opinion and having my every move scrutinized. She can throw as many temper tantrums as she wants, she cannot sway my rulings." Now, however, Max knew that he would need to be more careful in how he ruled on cases, he would need to make sure that anything he did, he could back up with a good argument, just in case the guardian came after him again, trying to paint him as a corrupt judge to the public.

"I had considered that, unfortunately. I welcome her to stalk me, I would happily infuriate her several times over with the truth of the law." It wasn't entirely true, Max would like nothing more than to never deal with a guardian again, but if he had no say in the matter, then he would delight in outraging the young guardian each time they crossed paths.

Leaning back in his chair as they ordered and the waitress walked away, Max smirked to Lilith. "I find it amusing when people are scared by such a normal interaction. They have no idea just how truly intimidating either of us can be." Max frequently held the lives of people in his hands, while Lilith was the mayor and could easily claim the same right. She could step in and try to advocate for people in prison, petition for a pardon, but Max knew that none of his cases were in jeopardy where Lilith was concerned. They had been friends for a good bit now, and when they weren't in public, they saw eye to eye very well.

"The demons are intriguing, it would be nice to know more about them. However, I am not foolish enough to believe that good people suddenly took to a life of crime, and if the Black Moon is performing such large gestures, it is solely because they want someone's attention, or everyone's attention. Or...we could all be tricked and perhaps it was the Dark Kingdom all along, using the Black Moon symbols to turn the eyes of the entire city on them. Either way, whichever group wanted attention so badly that they made that kind of gesture, is not the same group quietly murdering people in obscure alleyways."

Max knew murderers, he spent much of his time around murderers and other criminals, though in this particular case, Max knew far more about the situation than he was willing to let on. He knew exactly what the Dark Kingdom was up to, which, given the ridiculousness of that band of idiots, they weren't up to much. Regardless, he could only speculate on matters of public knowledge to Lilith.

"Charlie? That is the queen's security, right? I never did care to learn any of their names, it never seemed important. My advice? As the mayor of Orlando, it is your job to protect the city, it is not your job to protect the feelings of guardians. Given the location of the explosion, I should think that the guardian will agree that the presence of guardian-owned businesses is not in the best interest of the people of this city, and if they do not agree with that, then perhaps they don't have the best interests of the people of Orlando in their thoughts." It wasn't all-out a declaration against the guardians, but rather, a proposition to protect the very people that the guardians swore to protect as well.

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Lilith Rey - 24 Nov 2018

Lilith shrugged her shoulders, taking yet another sip of her lemon drop. “And this is where society today has become complex. If a Sailor Guardian goes against the law, it becomes put into question. But if a Sailor Guardian is questioning the law, it doesn’t matter. That is where we must put an end to this continuous debate of who holds more authority—the law or a Sailor Guardian?”
In many ways, Lilith could understand why both factions formed even if she chose not to side with either party. They spoke out against the injustice that a Sailor Guardian posed to society ever since Neo Queen Serenity and King Endymion rose to power. It was not right for a Sailor Guardian to hold diplomatic immunity just because of association.
“Max, my recommendation to you is the next time you have a….run-in with this pipsqueak of a Sailor Guardian is to make sure that you have the date on record. Each time you run into her, record it.” Lilith advised. “She may hold the power of a planet, but I won’t let the law sway in her favor.”
And that was final. Lilith was about to see to it that the Sailor Guardians held limited authority in her city, through whatever means necessary—they were the Guardian of the Queen. That’s all the power that they deserved, nothing more.
“We cannot rule out each faction and determine that there is yet another faction in the midst of all of this. Wiseman is a powerful foe, and it was him who chose to take the first stand against Neo Queen Serenity. No matter how wrong it may be, his followers may see him as the correct path to commit crime and murder as they’ve begun to revive the world America once knew.”
Lilith didn’t like the thought of it, but crime and murder was commonplace in American society. When an age of peace began, it seemed outright bizarre that crime and murder rates were so low. Lilith wasn’t even sure if it was a blessing that it was revived, as it brought back some sense of normalcy. More importantly, it kept the law enforcement occupied.
“We shall see.” Lilith replied nonchalantly. “This Guardian has had a history of performing with her partner, and she may be biased. I hope that as the Queen’s Head of Security that she won’t be. Either way, Charlie has no place in my office to declare anything that is not favorable to our people. My patience is wearing thin with his nonsense.”

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Maximilian Chase - 04 Dec 2018

"I absolutely agree, and she can question and throw her tantrums all she wants, but it will do nothing to sway my rulings or force me to change my mind. Her power holds no weight within the courtroom where the law is concerned, though it does make me question whether or not such high profile vigilantes should be allowed into courtrooms. Swaying the minds of the jury through their infamy, even with subtle tactics like sitting behind the side that they agree with, is what I am more concerned about."

Max had stared down hardened criminals, meeting them in shady locations to do business with them, a Sailor Guardian was not going to scare him. Leaning back from the table slightly as their waitress returned with their appetizers, setting the salad down for Lilith and the scallops in front of Max, the young judge stopped talking and watched the waitress until she disappeared back out of sight. There was no telling who you could trust, and Max tried to be very careful who he spoke in front of.

"I will start doing that. I have a feeling that this was not the last time I will be seeing her. There's something about her that I can't quite explain. It's not her powers or anything, but with these two meetings, they just don't feel like coincidences to me. I almost feel like I met her before that first time too, which makes me more suspicious that she's been following me."

It had been a feeling that was nagging at Max since the park meeting, and even more since the scene in his chambers. She felt familiar, and Max couldn't place his finger on where he knew her from before the park. It could just be that they often frequented the same shop or walked the same path and passed each other several times without ever realizing it, but it felt like more than just that and it drove Max crazy that he couldn't figure it out. Though with all the media coverage about the Sailor Guardians, it was hard to say that her face wasn't familiar, even if Max didn't buy into the whole hype and pay much attention, he definitely saw her on the news many times.

"That's a fair point. I can only speculate, but there is definitely a rise in violent crime in my courtroom, and I don't believe it's solely because I'm a criminal circuit judge. Our dockets are more full than they were even five years ago. Something is making things worse, or someone. And while the people of Orlando continue to get attacked, the queen stays in her palace and barely even makes a statement."

Rumors had long circulated about the disappearance of their 'queen', but Max didn't care about them, it didn't matter what the reason was, it only mattered that she put herself on her own made-up throne, then disappeared and let the city fall to the chaos. Cutting into one of the scallops and taking a bite, Max shook his head at the thought. The justice system was left to pick up the slack, and Max was getting a bit tired of that.

"If she is anything like the one that I have had dealings with, they are all biased. Hopefully she will see the importance of what you say, but if she doesn't, you need to remind her that you are the Mayor of Orlando. If you need any help, I can put in a call to the Governor. He was a classmate of my father's."

RE: Is Justice Ever Blind? - Lilith Rey - 12 Dec 2018

“I’m glad to hear that,” Lilith said in approval, knowing that she could trust Max to keep his word. Five years ago, Lilith wondered if she’d be making the same judgment call as she was now. But she was reminded that times were different then as well.
“Max, that’s something to question the next time you go to work. Perhaps it is up to the jury to decide whether or not they want a Sailor Guardian amongst them?” That would have been an interesting debate, as she’d known that it would have led to different outcomes per case with the majority vote.
Lilith’s eyebrow perked up when she heard Max’s next remark. Not a coincidence? Then it was stalking, wasn’t it? Lilith hadn’t heard Max suggest something like that before, not as far as strange encounters had gone.
“Then record it, and listen to it again when you are in private at your residence. See if there’s anything that doesn’t make sense in your encounter.” Lilith advised, although she wasn’t so sure of it herself. How could you….meet someone without knowing it? Lilith hadn’t had any experiences like that, and now that Max was explaining this to her, she was glad that she hadn’t. She’d known it’d likely make her a little paranoid.
“We all know who that culprit is, Max. Don’t be so foolish.” Lilith shook her head disappointingly. It was a combination of Wiseman and the Queen. It was a battle of chaos and order, but there were moments that Lilith wondered whether or not the Queen was truly order. “When Wiseman first appeared, that was when this hell began. It’d do the FBI some good to capture him.”
If they could capture him.
“I agree completely.” Lilith replied, and when their food arrived at their table, Lilith grabbed a fork eagerly. “I have no problem with reminding her of who I am, Max. I’m sure you know that by now. I’ll keep this meeting low-key for now before I involve the Governor.”