The Adventures of Nicolas de Kérallain

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Nicolas saw from behind his defences the onward wave of Englishmen stutter, before regaining its forward momentum up the grassy glacis…

Chapter One.

Paris, October 1754

Flexing his rapier against the gloved thumb of his left hand, twenty-two-year old Nicolas de Kérallain faced his accuser. The blade arced in response, glinting in the early morning sunlight. With the slippery dew like scattered diamonds on the grass and with only the calls of the earliest blackbirds to distract him, he held his sword forward in front of him at a slight upward angle. In a similar pose, his taller adversary Monsieur de Forgon glared three yards away in a white shirt which billowed at the cuffs.

Too late now for anything other than first blood,‘En garde,’ challenged the proud and headstrong Nicolas without a tremor or any hint of the turmoil in his mind. He advanced and thrust his steel blade towards the body of the older man who nimbly stepped back and to the side. Nicolas’ blade pierced thin air. In reply, de Forgon thrust his thin shaft of steel at Nicolas who fell back unbalanced, but despite almost falling over, he managed to parry the attack.

The young man is unsteady on his feet,’ said de Forgon mockingly. Continue reading “The Adventures of Nicolas de Kérallain”

Is Boris Johnson Guilty of Joint Enterprise?

Children in courtOn 2 November 1952, Derek Bentley was convicted as a party to murder, by the English law principle of common purpose, or joint enterprise. The jury at the trial found Bentley guilty based on the prosecution’s interpretation of the ambiguous phrase ‘Let him have it’.

Today, I believe that Boris Johnson is guilty by the same principle of joint enterprise in the murder of the British and Northern Irish body politic. David Cameron and Theresa May may have fired the bullets which impoverished our education services, enfeebled our health service, crippled our local government, depopulated our police forces, decimated our judicial system of magistrate courts, legal aid and prisons, and, for  the pièce de résistance, introduced the unfair and hopelessly organised (projected finish date 2017, but now expected not be completed before 2023), and expensive (forecast implementation cost £2bn now expected £12bn) Universal Credit system, but Johnson was there in the background saying little, but voting for each measure. Continue reading “Is Boris Johnson Guilty of Joint Enterprise?”