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Strange Case by Sean Regan
SUMMARY: For the June flash fiction contest, theme is "two sides to every story"
The 91,785th story of the brain of Jim Higgins, a prolific and unpublished author of science fiction, was devoted to "Fictional Characters – Post-1800 British Archetypes." Jim's brain preferred dualities, and so it categorized the residents of the story into "good" and "bad" sides.
The two sides of the 91,785th story were joined together by a lobby and bank of elevators. The residents met with one another in this lobby as they waited for an elevator to take them to the dining hall on the 1st story (no surprise considering Jim's gastronomic passions) or to the viewing lounge on the 100,000th story (Jim's brain liked round numbers).
This arrangement led to curious encounters. Alice frequently bumped into Dracula in the lobby; Dracula, the most infamous nobleman of the bad wing, usually invited her to visit his private catacombs but Alice, wiser after Wonderland, usually declined. Sometimes the meetings were familial. Elizabeth Bennett, the heroine of "Pride & Prejudice," and her husband Mr. Darcy, were prominent citizens of the good side, and occasionally they engaged Lizzie's immoral sister Lydia and her rakish husband, Mr. Wickham, in conversations that were remarkable for their superficial civility. (The third of the five Bennett sisters, the vapid Mary, had been consigned to the 22,189th story, "Fictional Characters – British, Dull.")
Other residents of Jim's brain enjoyed visiting the floor. George Costanza, the New Yorker from "Seinfeld," had a habit of ascending from the 63,174th story ("Fictional Characters – American Sitcoms") and mismanaging the truth while hitting on impressionable young women. He told Jane Eyre that his name was Art Vandelay, and he was an architect.
Of course, depending on Jim's mood and recent reading, the 91,785th story could shift considerably, and it was a strange case indeed when Jim read Stevenson's novella regarding Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Only in reading the story did Jim learn, after many years of ignorance, that Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde were two sides of the same person. Until then, Dr. Jekyll had been a respected physician in the good wing, while Mr. Hyde had gained a respectable reputation for depravity in the bad wing. The revelation of their shared identity caused a revolt on the 91,785th story of Jim's brain. On which side of the story did the strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde belong?
Faced with this quandary, Jim's brain did the only reasonable thing: it demanded a trial. While Jim slept and dreamed about his latest story (a derivative of a derivative of a third-rate speculative novel), the residents of the good and bad sides of the 91,785th story gathered to decide where Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, a single person with two personalities, should live.
David Copperfield represented the good side, and his nemesis Uriah Heep, the sniveling lawyer, the bad side. Judge Wapner was summoned from the 61,080th story ("People – Daytime American Television, Miscellaneous") to serve as judge. The subject of their trial, the person of Dr.