A/N: I LIIIIIIIIIIIIIIVE!
Man oh man, it feels like forever since I last updated this series. But here it is. The first chapter of the final story of the series I started so long ago!
Something to note. This story obviously takes place OUTSIDE of the canon of the games. Hence, I will not be addressing anything from Spirit of Justice, as it did not take place in this version of the Ace Attorney universe. I do plan to eventually write stories that incorporate SoJ, but for now, it's on the backburner.
Anywhore, without further ado, here it is! The first chapter of Turnabout Ever After!
No! I can't let it end like this! Phoenix screamed in his head as he looked over every file, every statement, every piece of evidence looking for that piece of evidence. The one that would prove her innocence.
"I see no reason to further prolong this trial."
Well I do! I can't fail her! I can't fail Maya! Phoenix was frantic now, his breathing heavy as he continued searching the court record. It had to be there!
"The defense's case is insufficient to overturn the prosecution's claims."
Yes it is! I just need another minute!
"This court finds the defendant, Maya Fey…"
"Please, wait Your Honor!"
"Court is adjourned!"
The sound of the gavel echoed through the courtroom. It was perhaps the loudest thing Phoenix had ever heard. He'd failed. He'd failed Mia. Failed himself.
But worst of all, he'd failed Maya. The woman he loved.
Phoenix slammed his fists on the bench in anger.
"DAMN IIIIIIIIIIIIIT!" Tears were streaming down his face. How could I let this happen!? Maya was the one person in this world who believed in me no matter what. And I failed her!
He struggled to lift his gaze to look at Maya one last time. This would be the last time he would ever see her beautiful visage without bulletproof glass between them.
"Maya…" He croaked out.
Maya remained silent for a moment, her head hung low and her face unreadable. Of course she couldn't look at him. He'd failed her. Finally, she spoke.
Phoenix continued to stare at the love of his life, soon to be torn from him, as she finally began to lift her head.
"How can any woman ever count on you for anything?"
Phoenix now stared at the girl in horror. The face he saw was not the face of his beloved Maya.
That serene visage, those crimson locks of hair, that look of disgusted condescension.
The she-devil at the witness stand look at him, absent-mindedly flipping her hair with her hand.
"Looks like you've done it again, Feenie. Another girl you couldn't protect." She gave her sweetest smile. "Old habits die hard, I suppose."
"S-Shut up! I'll make this right! No matter what happens, I'll save Maya!"
The girl laughed. Or rather, cackled. "Save her? From what? The only thing she needs saving from…"
The light of in courtroom began to fade, everything seeming to fade away until only pitch black darkness remained. But he could still see her. See the succubus whom he'd once affectionately referred to as Dollie. Her face was turned away from him. Finally, she turned to face him again, and Phoenix couldn't even scream at the horror he now saw before him.
The face of the person before was once again Maya's, but her eyes… They were pure white, and blood was streaming from them!
Wright Anything Agency
"-ick! Nick! Wake up, Nick!"
Phoenix jolted awake, sitting upright quickly and breathing heavily. He had broken out in a cold sweat and his chest heaved with each breathed he gulped in. He just registered Maya throwing her arms around him and holding him tightly.
"Shhhh. Calm down, Nick. It's alright. I'm here." She whispered to him in the sweetest voice she could muster. Her beautiful voice began to soothe him, and his breathing began to return to normal as he returned the embrace, holding the woman tightly, not wanting to let go.
Several minutes passed like this, the two of them simply holding each other before Maya finally pulled back slightly. "You ok now?" She asked in her sweet as honey voice.
"Y-yeah. Sorry about that. Just had a bad dream. I'm alright now."
"Another nightmare? What was it this time?" Maya asked, genuinely concerned for her husband to be.
"I…" Phoenix gazed upon her beautiful visage, her eyes filled with worry. He wanted to make that look go way. "I-I don't remember. Must not have been anything that bad."
"Nick… If these nightmares are getting worse the closer we get to the wedding, it's probably a good idea to see a therapist."
Phoenix placed a gentle kiss upon the girl's forehead. "Maya, I'm fine. Nothing to worry about. If anything, it's probably just Larry finally getting to me with trying to talk me out of this."
Maya let out a cute giggle. "Is he still doing that? Geez, you sure you want him in charge of your bachelor party?"
"Hey, it was the only way to get him to stop bugging me about making Edgeworth my best man. Besides, I have Edgeworth making sure he doesn't drag us all to a strip club or anything."
"Yeah, and thank god for that." Maya replied as she pulled out the embrace and got herself comfortable in the bed again. "Edgeworth's honestly been a huge help with all the wedding planning. Well, him and Anita. Who, by the way, we have an early meeting with in the morning."
Phoenix groaned. "Do I really have to come along?"
"Yes, you do! C'mon, Nick! There's nothing wrong with her. She's an absolute riot to be around and this whole ceremony couldn't happen without her."
"Yeah yeah. Look, don't get me wrong, Maya. She really is fun to be around. But I swear, every time I turn around, it get the feeling she's staring at my butt!"
Maya let out a laugh. "Well who can blame her!? Honestly, as long as she follows the look but don't touch rule, I have no problem. She knows good and well that rear end of yours is my property. Besides, she's married."
Phoenix simply let out a defeated sigh as he adjusted himself in the bed to lay back down. "Fair enough. And she does seem pretty devoted to her husband. Wandering eyes notwithstanding ."
"It's just a meeting to go over a few last minute details, Nick. Surely you can stand being ogled for a couple hours or so." Maya placed her arm around her fiancé.
"Yeah, you win." Phoenix placed his arm around his bride to be's waist.
"Well get some sleep then, old man." Maya said with a smile.
Phoenix smiled right back and placed a quick kiss on the girl's lips. "Good night, Maya."
"Good night, Nick."
And with that, sleep overtook the couple as they drifted off in each other's arms.
"Oh, I'm sorry for being late with you two!"
Phoenix and Maya glanced up from the respective magazines they were reading, O, Cult! For Maya and The Leisurely Lawyer for Phoenix, to see Anita Plana, their wedding planner, stepping out of her office.
Anita was a beautiful, mocha cream skinned woman still well in her earlier years of life. Her dark hair framed a lovely face with dark eyes and a smile that could light up any room.
"Oh, Anita!" Maya exclaimed as she stood and hugged the woman in greeting. "It's no problem at all. We're in no rush anyway. Right, Nick?"
Phoenix his magazine away and followed the woman into the office. "Yeah, I have Apollo watching the office right now. And Trucy watching Apollo."
Both girls snickered as everyone took a seat. "Good to know the babysitting situation is under control. But let's get onto more important matters." Anita spun around in her swivel chair and pulled out a large file, which supposedly held all the details of the couple's upcoming nuptials. "I have some good news and some bad news. What order would you like to hear them in?"
"Good news first, please." Phoenix answered immediately. He needed to hear some good news after his dream the night before.
How can any woman ever count on you for anything?
He shook his head, as if shaking away the words of his demonic ex-girlfriend.
Anita simply smiled, either not noticing the man's mini spaz attack or not wanting to bring it up. "Well, the good news is," She looked to Maya. "I FINALLY managed to convince the catering service to set up that build your own burger bar you were so insistent on."
"Aw, yes!" Maya exclaimed, pumping a fist into the air. "Wedding of the year, here we come!"
The wedding planner chuckled at the woman's excitement. "Now, don't get too excited. You still have to hear the bad news."
"Hey, nothing can ruin my mood now. Lay it on me!"
"Well…" Anita flipped through the file before pulling out a sheet of paper that depicted the face of a happy faced Asian man in his mid 40's, who, Phoenix recognized as the priest from the church their wedding was to be held at, Face to Face Ministry. "Unfortunately, the officiant you originally chose, Father Moe Lee, won't be able to oversee the ceremony. I received a call from him last night. His wife went into labor earlier than expected, so he wants to be with her and the baby."
"Aw, that sucks! How could you drop this on me like this, Anita!?" Maya cried, appearing to be on the verge of tears.
Nothing can ruin your mood, huh? Phoenix found himself thinking.
"Now, now, don't you worry. I know you had your heart set on ol' Holy Moe Lee presiding over it all, but this doesn't mean the wedding can't go on." The dark haired beauty pulled another paper out of the folder and laid it before the couple. "This is Isaac Reot. He's graciously offered to take the Father's place as the officiant. I would just need your approval to give him the go ahead. Otherwise, we'd need to postpone the wedding. And I'm sure neither of you want that."
"Well…" Maya turned to look at Phoenix. "What do you think, Nick? Should we go for it?"
Phoenix picked up the paper before him and took a look at it. On it, there was a picture of a man who appeared to be in his late 50's. His brown hair was beginning to gray in his late age. His chestnut brown eyes and smile exuded a warm atmosphere. The file also listed a few facts about the man, such as his 10 years of devotion to the church.
"I say go ahead. This guy seems nice." Phoenix said, laying the file back on Anita's desk. "Though, I would actually like to meet him before the wedding, if that's alright."
"Perfect!" Anita exclaimed. "I'll call him tonight and see if he's free tomorrow." The woman reorganized the file and closed it. "I can call you later and let you know. Now, onto something more personal." The girl smiled mischievously. "You two still have not gotten back to me on coming over and having dinner with my hubby and I!"
Maya and Phoenix both let out a hearty chuckle.
"We know, we know, Anita." Maya said. "We've just been so busy at the office lately. We've hardly been able to make our appointments here with you."
"Well, are you two free tonight?" Anita asked as she put away the file.
"Unfortunately, no." Phoenix answered. "Right after we leave here, we have to go meet a couple of friends at the airport."
"Oh, that's right!" Anita said, hitting herself in the head with her open palm. "I nearly forgot about Mr. Layton and Mr. Triton."
"Yeah, it's been so long since we've seen them. We plan to have dinner with the two of them tonight and catch up." Maya explained.
"Right, right. And I would hate to ruin such a fine evening between friends. So ignore me! We'll reschedule. Though, it's looking like I'll be expecting Mr. and Mrs. Wright rather than Mr. Wright and Ms. Fey."
Everyone in the room laughed at this.
"Alright, that's all I needed from you two today. Go ahead and get to the airport. Don't let me make you late!"
Phoenix and Maya both stood, Maya wrapping Anita in another hug. "You're the best, Anita."
"Why do you always have to tell me what I already now?" The woman said with a smile.
With one final laugh, the soon to be wed couple turned and left the office.
However, just as the door behind them closed, Nick could swear he heard the woman let out a whistle.
Attention passengers, this is your captain speaking. We'll be arriving at our destination soon. We ask that you all return to your seats and prepare for landing, and we thank you for choosing iFly.
"So we'll be landing soon, eh? Boy, I can hardly wait to see them again, Professor!" Exclaimed a young man in his teens.
The boy's travel companion, a man dressed in a brown suit and wearing a large top hat, smiled and took a sip of his tea. "I share your sentiments, my boy. It truly has been far too long. It will be wonderful to see Mr. Wright and Ms. Fey once again. And on such a happy occasion no less."
"It's still doesn't seem real that the two of them found love with each other. But I sure am I excited to be invited. I love a good wedding."
"As do I, Luke." The top hat wearing professor's face glowed with a warm smile as he look out his window over the vast city that lay beneath them. "And I have a feeling it will be a wedding to remember."