Title: In Sickness and in Health
Summary: Ianto looks after everyone, but who looks after him?
Chapter Summary: Carys’ testimony comes to an end
Warning: Occasional language, references to child abuse,
http://welsh-scotsman.livejournal.com/6120.html chapter one
Chapter Forty Nine
Strutt blinked. The rest of the court was silent. Everyone in the room stared at Carys.
“He’s not...he’s not Ianto’s father,” replied Carys, apparently shocked even at her own words. But Strutt moved quickly and resumed his offensive immediately, his next words were spoken in a tone that seemed for all the world, unimpressed. Even bored.
“And you have medical proof of this? A DNA test perhaps?”
“Well...no but ...”
“So how would you know?”
Carys looked at him angrily, “Why do you think Wayne came at me with the knife that night? It certainly wasn’t ‘cos I’d forgotten to wash his socks.”
“Well, that is a matter of opinion, Miss Jones. For all we know, Mr Lloyd did not come at you with a knife at all. Same way as for all we know, Mr Lloyd is Ianto’s father and you are merely saying this – without any proof, I may add, in order to get back at him, or Ianto, or whomever else you don’t happen to like very much.”
“That’s not true! Come on; look at them – they’re nothing alike!”
Strutt shrugged, his veneer impassive. “Recessive genes and age tend to do that to relatives, Miss Jones. Sons take after their mothers – this is relatively common knowledge.”
“That’s not –“ Carys looked around and exhaled in frustration. “I’m telling the truth,” she finished quietly, determinedly avoiding the eyes of her son, which were fixed on her with an unconsciously determined disbelief. He didn’t seem to understand, he wasn’t even registering his partner, who was fervently whispering in his ear and gripping him gently.
Strutt raised an eyebrow in a more cynical display of disbelief. “The irony being if, indeed, you are telling the truth now, you certainly haven’t been for the last twenty five odd years. What would prompt this sudden burst of veracity?”
“Cos it matters now!”
“In the middle of a Court that have all but turned their backs on your son! Yes, I can see how now would be an entirely appropriate time to break the news gently to Ianto – to both your children for that matter.”
“Bu-“ Carys’ frustrated dropped into a tragic look of helpless desperation, when Strutt interrupted her she was almost grateful.
“Okay. Let’s assume – like we have with most of your statements, that you are telling the truth.” Strutt looked his witness up and down. “You have to admit that it’s a bit convenient, don’t you think? Stating that Mr Lloyd is no longer Mr Jones’ father?” He surveyed the Courtroom. “After all, if anyone can bring themselves to believe it, not only have you destroyed whatever semblance of a family Mr Jones and, indeed, Mrs Davies had left, but you have also given Mr Lloyd a motive: Mr Jones is not his son, ergo, he can – allegedly - knock several bells out of him whenever he so wishes!”
“It’s a bit far-fetched don’t you think, Miss Jones, to think that Mr Lloyd is that dedicated to hating you or Ianto that he would keep your illegitimate child around for a further ten years and then waste precious time and effort tracking him down just to continue to beat him up?”
“Well, he didn’t exactly have a choice: I left and he couldn’t contact me.”
“So he did what any decent man would do. In fact, he went above and beyond by all accounts, and raised your child when he would have been perfectly within his rights to refuse to. I’m sorry, Miss Jones, but if anything, the allegation that Mr Jones is not Mr Lloyd’s son reflects far worse on you than it ever could on Mr Lloyd. In fact –“
Carys interrupted him and her tone seemed to match her expression of frustrated weariness. “Look, I know I’ve mucked up and I know Ianto suffered for it and I am truly sorry but you can’t blame me for this.”
“I don’t, but what Mr Jones and Mrs Davies must be thinking is a very different matter.”
Carys could not help but look toward the gallery at that moment. Her eye unerringly found both her children’s seats and their expressions seemed to match, though where Rhiannon’s eyes had an edge to them, Ianto’s were simply desolate; crushed. Strutt continued. “At the end of the day, Mr Lloyd did what both you and Ianto’s ‘real’ father failed to: he brought him up. He fed him, clothed him, and made him the man he is today.”
“Your Honour, I believe my questioning has run its course. I have no further questions for the witness,” stated Strutt as he resumed his seat and straightened his papers, avoiding Carys’ eye as he did so. Carys looked desperately after him, as though about to call him back, but the Judge’s voice closed her open lips.
“Very well. Do you wish to call any more witnesses to the stand?”
“No, Your Honour. The defence rests its case.”
“Very well.” The Judge dismissed Cays from the stand, who turned and left as though bound for the Gallows. She did not look at Ianto. The Judge then turned to Clark. “Mr Clark, the Crown may now sum up its case for the jury.”
Clark inclined his head before conferring briefly with his assistant and standing to face the jury. His gaze flickered briefly to the team before settling once more upon the jury. He exhaled and spoke. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Mr Lloyd comes before you charged with two counts of grievous bodily harm – firstly on the 14th October 2008 and secondly on the 15th October 2008, not to mention numerous counts of physical assault towards a minor and several counts of harassment that will be decided separately if Mr Lloyd is found guilty of these two crimes. It is the Crown’s argument that Mr Wayne Lloyd has –without any known provocation – committed the most heinous of crimes by systematically, relentlessly and maliciously physically and psychologically, abusing his only son and youngest child Mr Ianto Jones for nay on twenty years. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, you no doubt have sons, step-sons, nephews, cousins who enjoy – and have enjoyed - good, stable, happy childhoods free from pain, anger and fear. It is the Crown’s argument that Mr Jones was not so lucky. For years, he was indoctrinated into believing that he deserved the brutal physical assaults that his own father – the man who is meant to love and protect him above all else – subjected him to.
“Did this relentless abuse stop when Mr Jones fled his childhood home? No, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, it did not. It is the Crown’s belief that on the 14th October 2008, Mr Lloyd let himself into Mr Jones flat with a key that Mr Jones had not authorised and subjected him to a merciless assault that left his wrists and ribs severely bruised and his hands, feet and side severely cut from being pushed – at force into – as Mr Lloyd himself admitted, glass. Now, you have seen for yourself the photographic evidence of those injuries. You have heard how the Defence believes Mr Harkness to be responsible for such injuries. The Crown refutes this. You have seen the severity of those injuries; you have also seen Mr Harkness’ height in relation to both Mr Jones and Mr Lloyd. Whilst the Crown accepts that Mr Harkness does stand at six feet one inch tall and is of an athletic build, he does not have the same height – the same power advantage over Mr Jones who himself stands at five feet eleven inches tall, as Mr Lloyd who stands at six feet five inches and is of a much broader build than both Mr Harkness and Mr Jones.
“You have heard, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, how Mr Lloyd indulges in the ‘odd’ alcoholic beverage on occasion. You have seen the CCTV footage of Mr Lloyd’s antics when under the influence of such a poison. Is it really that hard to believe that he would be capable of easily and mercilessly persecuting a man so traumatised by years of abuse that he is both physically and mentally incapable of defending himself? Yes, an altercation between Mr Lloyd and Mr Jones led to the former’s hospitalisation, but it should also be borne in mind that Mr Jones suffered a breakdown because of it.” Clark surveyed the jury individually. “He is not the cold-blooded would-be killer Mr Strutt would have you believe.
“Similarly, I would advise you to ask yourselves what relevance Mr Davidson’s testimony has to this case - if any at all. Yes, Mr Jones may have made mistakes in his past, and yes, we may never truly know what happened during the years he was on the streets, but that is not important here. What is important is that we remember why he was in that situation to start with. The answer? His father. Whatever he did or did not do was down to desperation. Not greed, not malice, but the simple desire to survive.” Clark paused a moment before continuing. “Ianto Jones is just a normal, young man who wants to get on with his life. To enjoy his life, his relationship, his friendships and it is for these reasons that I urge you to choose the correct verdict: guilty.” As he finished, he surveyed the jury impassively, they seemed to return his look ambivalently in turn. Mr Clark resumed his seat.
The Judge inclined his head. “Thank you, Mr Clark. Mr Strutt, you may now sum up your case for the defence.”
“Thank you, Your Honour.” Strutt stood and straightened his papers. His eyes remained downcast for a moment before he looked up directly at the jury and his old smug look returned, though there was a new hardness to his eyes. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the Crown has portrayed Mr Wayne Lloyd as a vicious monster who would willingly and, without provocation, viciously and mercilessly beat and harass his youngest child and only son Mr Ianto Jones. This is by no means the case. Mr Wayne Lloyd is a good, honest, loving father and grandfather who does not deserve to be dragged through this kind of rigmarole at his time of life when there is no justifiable reason for doing so.”
Strutt indicated Clark. “The Prosecution may well believe that the - admittedly - untoward behaviour Mr Lloyd exhibited towards Miss Sato displayed on the CCTV yesterday is atypical of his behaviour throughout Mr Jones' childhood and, more importantly in regards to this case, his constant search for reconciliation with his son in more recent months, but that is both unfair and untrue. Mr Lloyd himself admitted that he had been drinking beforehand, and he has admitted that his intent to visit Ianto whilst under the influence was ill-advised and his actions, inexcusable.
“However, you have heard how Mr Lloyd visited Mr Jones’ flat on two occasions out of concern for him. You have heard how he was treated – both by Mr Jones and by Mr Harkness. The alienation he has suffered from his son would drive any desperate parent to require an anxious crutch for a third meeting. In fact, it’s admirable that he even attempted to talk to his son at all given the circumstances, but that is who Mr Lloyd is – a dedicated father who would do anything for his children even if that comes at personal cost to himself The important thing to remember here is that, whilst his behaviour was misjudged, it was by no means illegal.
“This brings me to my second point - the apparent ‘medical’ evidence presented yesterday. Those photos showed that Mr Jones sustained blows to his torso and, later, to his neck. That is all. They do not tell us when these blows were inflicted, nor do they tell us who inflicted them or why. It may well have been Mr Lloyd as the Prosecution would have you believe. However, my point is that Mr Lloyd is an old man whose best years are behind him. In contrast, Mr Jones is a healthy, young man in the prime of his life who was also, I might add, able to summon the strength to push his larger, doting father down a flight of stone stairs without a moment’s notice.
“Surely it is more likely, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, that such contusions would be inflicted by someone much closer to the plaintiff. Someone who spends a great deal of their time with the plaintiff.” Strutt glanced towards the gallery. “Indeed, someone who would have a much greater motive for beating the plaintiff than a simple desire to regain his love and trust.
"This brings me to my penultimate point - the validity of the chief witness’ statement. It has become apparent throughout the course of this trial that he is not the naive, innocent victim that the Crown would have you believe. From the age of sixteen, he was using his physical appearance to deceive and manipulate men into giving him what he wanted. Be that food, shelter or a job.” Strutt glanced down at his notes. “Although, of course, the exact technicalities of how he did this will remain with Mr Jones and Mr Jones alone.”
The Courtroom was quiet for several moments before Strutt readdressed the Court. “Furthermore, the only witness who could possibly give us even a glimpse into Mr Lloyd’s allegedly violent nature is a woman who willingly left her supposedly wanted and, possibly illegitimate child, with him. Those are not the actions of someone who believes without any doubt that her husband is a brutal and vicious wife-beater. Those are the actions of someone who, for whatever reason, just could not be bothered to look after her children any more. This would be all well and good if not for the fact that she risked her own life in order to have Ianto in the first place. This suggests a somewhat fickle personality that does not know what it wants at the best of times, let alone in times of crisis.
“Finally, and perhaps most importantly, no one has ever been privy to the apparent abuse suffered by Mr Jones at the hands of Mr Lloyd. Not his mother, not his sister, not his partner. Surely, this should remove any remaining doubt over Mr Lloyd’s innocence –if, of course, there was any to start with. If this alleged abuse is as meticulous, as regular, as severe as Mr Jones makes it out to be, then someone would have noticed. No one ever did, ladies and gentlemen of the jury. Not even his partner who, I might remind you, has lived with him for nearly two years and with whom he has a carnal relationship. Surely, out of all the witnesses examined today, Mr Harkness would have been the most likely to notice an elderly, statuesque man coming to and from his flat on a regular basis enough to mention it. Surely, he would have noticed the horrific cuts and contusions that would surely litter his lover’s body after any apparent run-ins.” Strutt stopped and looked towards the gallery where his gaze stayed for some time before he dropped it to his notes.
When he spoke again, his voice had none of its’ usual force. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, it is not the will of the defence to victimise or harass the plaintiff. Nor is it the will of the defence to belittle any apparent trauma he has apparently suffered. Mr Jones is clearly a deeply unsettled and unstable young man, but this is not the result of years of abuse as the Crown would have you believe. If anything, it is the result of a neglectful mother, overstressed father and years of self-imposed exile on the streets. Therefore, I urge you to choose the correct verdict: not guilty.” He then inclined his head respectfully towards the Judge before resuming his seat.
“Thank you, Mr Strutt.” The Judge turned towards the jury. “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Mr Wayne Lloyd comes before you charged with two counts of grievious bodily harm. If you believe the Crown’s case that Mr Lloyd has assaulted Mr Jones and that the CCTV evidence and medical evidence prove it, you must find him guilty. If, however, you believe the defence, that Mr Lloyd has not assaulted Mr Jones and the testimonies of the witnesses hold tenant to this notion, you must find him not guilty.” The Judge then inclined his head towards the bailiff. “Court is dismissed.” He then acknowledged both Mr Clark and Mr Strutt before leaving the room.
http://welsh-scotsman.livejournal.com/35310.html#cutid1 chapter fifty