Published at
Cover Library Novels Global Fiction
PreviousTable of contentsNext

Fraudulent Fertilisation

Episode 65

Ricardo Ludovico Gulminelli
Smaller text sizeDefault text sizeBigger text size Add to my bookshelf epub mobi Permalink Ebook MapMar del Plata, Bosque Peralta Ramos

The judge said, “Yes, Doctor Allegri, you wished to speak?”

“No, doctor, I simply wanted to say that we offer the opposing party the chance to speak first. I feel that our position has been outlined very precisely in the lawsuit document. Doctor Burán knows our demands, it’s for him to express his opinion about them. As far as we know, up until now he hasn’t acknowledged his son.”

Doctor Bisson addressed Roberto and asked him, “Doctor Burán, you’ve heard Doctor Allegri’s proposal, have you got anything to say? It would be important for you to express your opinion. I’d like to direct this hearing from the beginning, that way everything will be much easier. Is that all right?”

“Excuse me, your honour,” said Roberto, “I’d like to make it clear that I’m accompanied in this hearing by Doctor Rocío Bareilles. She’s a specialist in family law... With the aim of being coherent and avoiding any useless jurisdictional waste, I’d like her to represent me from now on in this hearing.”

“That seems acceptable,” said Doctor Bisson, “in any case we’ve brought the parties together to try and reach a conciliatory agreement... For the court, not only is your presence fundamental, but also your effective intervention. That without affecting your right to be represented. Well, we’re listening, Doctor Bareilles...”

Rocío was wearing an elegant dress; she had temporarily abandoned the informal style she liked. She wanted to fulfil her role as Roberto’s defence without giving any advantage. First impressions could be decisive. Without getting up out of her seat, she said, “Your honour, we do not approve of the opinion of the distinguished lawyer for the plaintiff. It’s not true that their summons reveals their posture, at least not in relation to this hearing. Said document simply attributes deviant behaviour and the paternity of a child to my client, but offers no clue to the outline of a possible conciliation. It simply requests the convocation of the parties, but does not say what solutions they offer. We are therefore ready to hear proposals. It’s reasonable to believe that Ms Juana Artigas has them... Otherwise she would not have requested this meeting. It seems logical for us to suppose this.”

Allegri was perturbed. He could carry on in the same line, but he thought it would be mistaken; so he agreed to speak before his adversaries in the trial.

“All right, although we don’t agree with what Doctor Burán’s representative says, we’ll begin. Both the judge and the minors advisor have a lot of work, we’ll get straight to the point... Our approach is very simple: the facts are stated with total clarity in the lawsuit. In the first place, we think it would be useful to know whether Doctor Burán is prepared to acknowledge his paternity. That would prevent us expounding on subjects that are perhaps not disputed. This is the main thing, everything else comes in addition. Will you answer, Doctor Bareilles?”

“Right, Doctor Allegri,” said Rocío, “I see you give priority to the filiation analysis and want to know if my client accepts that he is the father. But, could we hear first why you are interested in the paternity of Doctor Burán? Is it to assure Juana Artigas the administration of a large child support quota? So that the child has the right to inherit from my client? We think it’s important first to hear an answer to these queries. Would that be possible, your honour?”

The judge was a little surprised; the hearing was leaving the habitual rails. There seemed to be something hidden, things were being looked at from too many angles. But as she was interested in finding out the truth, she thought it best to allow the parties to maintain a dialectical game.

“Doctor Allegri, could you tell the court what is the interest that Ms Artigas is essentially pursuing?”

“But, your honour! said Juana’s lawyer, “this hearing is taking on an inquisitorial aspect! We’re not here to be interrogated! The interest of my party is evident: Ms Artigas is an honest person, but fundamentally a mother. She wants recognition of the rights the law grants her son. I don’t approve of the approach being given to this meeting; we are not the ones at fault, we’re claiming a right. We would like Doctor Burán, who seems to be so worried about our interests, to speak... Let him tell us whether or not he is the father of the child borne by my mandator. Are we asking to much, your honour?”

“What do you say, Doctor Bareilles?” said the judge.

“The court will be informed in due course,” answered Rocío, “but I must point out that Doctor Allegri still hasn’t answered the question he’s been asked. It’s of basic importance to my client to know what result Ms Artigas is pursuing.”

Doctor Bisson seemed annoyed. Raising her tone of voice slightly, she said, “Esteemed doctors, from now on, I will conduct the hearing. I won’t accept interruptions or lobbying. I will consider silence as a refusal to subject yourselves to conciliation. If there is any objection to reaching a specific agreement, I ask you to approach me with it right now; I do not wish to waste any more time if the intention is not conciliatory. Doctor Bareilles, Doctor Allegri’s explanation is sufficient answer for me, although he does not give details. It should be understood that Doctor Allegri demands maintenance and custody of the minor, all as a consequence of your filial acknowledgement, am I right?”

“Absolutely,” said Juanita’s lawyer, exhibiting an ironic smile.

Rocío remained impassive, obviously her position was misunderstood; the judge was incapable of imagining everything that the simple aim of Juana Artigas enclosed.

“All right,” she said resignedly, “I will sum up our position regarding this trial for the court and the Incapacity Trust. We do not deny my client’s paternity, nor do we confirm it...”

The smile was wiped from Allegri’s face and the advisor asked, “Excuse me, doctor, should we take it that your client has doubts regarding his paternity?”

“That’s right,” said Rocío, “but there’s more... Doctor Burán, I’d like you to explain briefly to the court what happened.”

Translation: Peter Miller (© 2002)
PreviousTable of contentsNext
Table of related information
Copyright ©Ricardo Ludovico Gulminelli, 1990
By the same author RSS
Date of publicationSeptember 2002
Collection RSSGlobal Fiction
Readers' Opinions RSS
Your opinion
How to add an image to this work

Besides sending your opinion about this work, you can add a photo (or more than one) to this page in three simple steps:

  1. Find a photo related with this text at Flickr and, there, add the following tag: (machine tag)

    To tag photos you must be a member of Flickr (don’t worry, the basic service is free).

    Choose photos taken by yourself or from The Commons. You may need special privileges to tag photos if they are not your own. If the photo wasn’t taken by you and it is not from The Commons, please ask permission to the author or check that the license authorizes this use.

  2. Once tagged, check that the new tag is publicly available (it may take some minutes) clicking the following link till your photo is shown: show photos ...

  3. Once your photo is shown, you can add it to this page:

Even though does not display the identity of the person who added a photo, this action is not anonymous (tags are linked to the user who added them at Flickr). reserves the right to remove inappropriate photos. If you find a photo that does not really illustrate the work or whose license does not allow its use, let us know.

If you added a photo (for example, testing this service) that is not really related with this work, you can remove it deleting the machine tag at Flickr (step 1). Verify that the removal is already public (step 2) and then press the button at step 3 to update this page. shows 10 photos per work maximum. Idea, design & development: Xavier Badosa (1995–2018)