A/N: Ok. So I figured to start out I should probably load up some stories I've written in the past. This was something I did from school for our crime unit. I've always thought truth and justice to be something ambiguous, and so that concept was the origin for this story.
'In matters of truth and justice, there is no difference between large and small problems, for issues concerning the treatment of people are all the same'
The house across the street was built by the Government as part as its 1940's housing commission scheme. The white picket fence perfectly matches the house's clean stark walls. The garden is neat, and a small gravel path lined with trim, attractive flowering bushes leads up from the drive to the front door. A Holden Commodore - the 'family car' - resides in the garage. A husband and wife live here with their twelve year old son. The perfect home. The perfect car. The perfect family.
The curtains are always drawn. The lights are never on. The son is never seen.
17 Nullah Way Sefton
It was found at 07:15 am on Saturday 14th February 1981. The body of a man aged approximately 81-85 was found on the bathroom floor. Death appeared to have been caused by a heavy blow to the occipital bone at the base of the skull. Bleeding from the nose, ears and presence of 'raccoon eyes' suggests a Basilar skull fracture. 30 cm high marble statue found on location with traces of blood expected to be the victims. Victim identified as Henry Jajac. Body found when food delivery men encountered no answer to the door. The front door was open. The men preceded to check for the houses inhabitant and called the police.
No fingerprints found. No sign of forced entry. No sign of a struggle. Suspected murder.
15 Nullah Way, Sefton
The child had bruises. You could see them. Peeking out from underneath his shirt. Over his ams. Creeping up over his neck. Purple and blue over yellow and green. New. Old. His flat nose, upward slanting eyes and square head hinted at something that was not quite right about him. Mongolism the doctors said. He doesn't play. Doesn't move. Just sits. And waits. And dreads. His mother comes in and tries to play with him for a while. She tries to distract him with some lollies and for a moment it works, his face lighting up in a moment of sweetness, his too-small, chubby hands grasping for them. Then its gone. The front door opens and the fly screen slams. The fear. Footsteps on the floor. He's home.
17 Nullah Way, Sefton
The lady next door comes over every friday to bring fresh flowers for his table. She reminds him of how his daughter once was, her black hair. But this ones eyes are tired. Haunted by things hidden behind closed curtains. He asks after the child. She tells him he is well. Her mouth smiles. Her eyes are sad. He has guessed that things are not as they seem but he does not ask. He lets her be and thanks her for the flowers. As always they are beautiful. She turns and walks down the drive. He can see the bruise under her collar but he says nothing. He has learned always, to say nothing.
15 Nullah Way, Sefton
His cufflink has broken, and as usual it was her responsibility to take all and fix all. He would come home and expect dinner on the table. Their son diligently waiting for the meal to commence. He could never look at the child without a bottle of alcohol near. To think that he...that...it...was a product of him would make his mind turn. Whenever dinner was over the whiskey would begin. Trying to free him from the frustration his life holds. He and his wife no longer loved. They grew apart 12 years ago when the embarrassment began. The humiliation of a child that was not right. Could not play or think or speak like other children. He hid the child away. No-one knew of its condition. No-one ever would.
17 Nullah Way Sefton
The way the body lies indicates a fall. The tiles are stained with his blood. His eyes are glassy as they stare into the unknown. The investigators cram inside the small bathroom, forensics officer, detective and coroner. The coroner noted the time of death from 3:30 -5:00 PM Friday afternoon. Death a result of internal bleeding within the cranium.
The detective noted the positioning of the body, on its belly, one arm under the body - almost as if it had been rolled. The forensics officer analysed for blood splatter, any indication of the blow. Droplets on the floor, droplets on the statue, droplets under the sink edge. A small cufflink next to the toilet. Presumably accidently dropped by the murderer as their escape was made. Something is not right.
Report 36 (1981) Section 14. Domestic Violence and Harrassment.
14.4 Any person who has been assaulted may cause the assailant to be prosecuted for a criminal offence. For a conviction to be obtained, the assault, or other offence, must be proved beyond reasonable doubt...
Sefton Police Station
Victim was resident of 17 Nullah Way Sefton. Henry Jajac. 75 yo. Roman Catholic. Used walking stick. Suffered from Parkinson's disease. Immigrated to Australia from Poland in 1949. Lived in Sefton since immigration. Wife died 8 years ago. No surviving children. Only daughter committed suicide at 22 yo, reason unknown.
Neighbors were Harold Heathson, 40 yo, Administrative Officer; and Marion Heathson, 35 yo. Couple have been married for 13 years and have lived in 15 Nullah Way for 6 months. The wife would give Jajac flowers from her garden every Friday at approximately 4:30 PM. On the day of the murder she states he was still alive when she saw him.
17 Nullah Way Sefton
He walked slowly into his bathroom. He could feel every ache and pain in his old bones, wearied from years of work and living. He looked at the matching hand towels and bath mat his wife had bought all those years ago with their floral decorations. He could almost see her face when she had turned to him, and said 'Henry, what do you think, should we get these?' he had smiled and replied with his usual 'If you like dear.' She would laugh and in that moment he would just watch her face, tracing every detail with his mind, so he would never forget.
His memories had faded as time passed, every year felt like only a day. A day he couldn't quite remember, its edges blurred, fading into oblivion. How he missed her. He continued into the room, and reached for the handrail along the wall - an accessory to age. His fingers slipped. He fell, sliding back on the bath mat he and his wife had bought all those years ago. He saw from the corner of his eye the corner of the sink rising to meet him. Then nothing.
She walked tentatively into the house calling his name. The door was unlocked but he wasn't answering. She had brought the flowers, as she did every week. Except he wasn't answering. The house's interior was exactly the same as her own - courtesy or the Housing Commission. She found him lying on the bathroom floor. So peaceful. He looked almost like he was asleep, a contrast to the pool of blood around him. The first thing that went through her mind was regarding what her husband would say.
Her husband. Her husband. The fear. The violence. The anger. The depression. Gone.
She could do it she knew she could. Dear sweet Henry who had been her friend for the last six months provided the means. She could give the man she married what he deserved, and free herself, and her son. She took a small statue from the sideboard outside the room and dipped it in the old mans blood. She felt for the handkerchief in her pocket to clean off her fingerprints and found the broken cufflink, and dropped it on the floor. She went into the kitchen and replaced the flowers with her fresh ones. No-one would know her story wasn't true, and they would be free of him.
"Justice cannot be for one side alone, but must be for both.'