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The State vs. Thomas Light

This song is by The Protomen and appears on the album Act II: The Father of Death (2009).

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Thomas Light was picked up three days later in a beggars' cemetery. Emily Stanton had been buried there an hour earlier. She had no family. Her few acquaintances from the factory were busy covering the hole she'd left in their workforce. A few unmoving passages were read by a disaffected priest as her body was slowly lowered into the cold ground. No one but the men paid to cover her pine casket with earth heard his words. Even those were drowned out by the more urgent ones booming from the large telescreen. An hour after the ceremony, Light stepped out of the tree line just beyond the grave. He staggered to the mound of freshly moved earth and fell to his knees, tears pouring from his eyes onto her grave. The police, too, had been waiting. He didn't resist. The trial began within the week. The media circus was phenomenal. The city saw a demon portrayed on the screen. Every shred of evidence was dissected and rebuilt to incriminate him. Constant news, facts, and rumors were forced upon and absorbed by the masses.

Emily, the crowd has gathered here
But it is not because of you.
Emily, the taste of blood in their mouths,
I can't imagine what they'll do.
But it doesn't matter what they'll do to me.

Emily, have they forgotten you
When they set their sights on me?
They will hang me from the rope tonight
Will you be waiting there for me?
Will our souls remember where we said we'd meet
On the way out of this town?
I'm leaving one way or the other, Emily.
There's nothing left here for me now.

Emily, it's so quiet now.
It's like the calm before a storm.

They will punish me for what he did to you
But either way it's all my fault,
'Cause I made the man who laid his hands on you.
And I would tear him down, but I feel like a dead man
And what can a dead man do?

Emily: This is not your fault
Tom: I'm leaving one way or the other, Emily.
Emily: This is not your fault
Tom: There's nothing left here for me now.

Turning his attention to the proceedings...

Here comes the blow.
We find the only man who loved her...
We find the only man who'd give his life
To see her once again... We find this man
Emily: Not guilty!
Tom: Guilty... I am guilty... I am guilty!

The judge entered his chambers. The lawyers and jury filed out of the courtroom, leaving Light, a free man, sitting silently behind the defendant's table. The sound of the mob outside was deafening. Even from within the thickly marbled walls of the courthouse, their rage - their sense of injustice - were palpable. Throughout the trial, the telescreen had told them that their judicial system would ultimately fail them, that the laws of the city were flawed, skewed to shelter monsters like Light, powerless to protect the people. Impotent. Weak. Dangerously out of touch with the times. Obviously, the screen had been telling the truth. Now, it was telling the masses that they would have to take matters into their own hands if justice was to be served.