"Woo!" Maya cheered as everyone entered the defendant lobby. "We got Heihachi off the hook and took down Bison all over again. Best. Day. Ever!"
"Speak for yourself, Maya," Phoenix said. "I'd very much like to forget this whole day, this whole week, ever happened. If you could just knock me over the head with a fire extinguisher, I'd greatly appreciate it."
"Always the pessimist, huh, Wright?" Heihachi replied.
Phoenix sighed. "No, you're right. This should be good thing. I'm glad I could help, Heihachi."
"Ya see?" Heihachi said. "This is why I called you. You've pulled some pretty amazing comebacks out of the worst possible scenarios, so I knew I had to have you on my side." He held his hand out towards Phoenix.
"Hey, anyone willing to fly me in from the States is probably worth the hassle." Phoenix took the hand and shook it.
"Yo, Prof!" Everyone turned to see Majima and Kiryu coming into the room. As expected, both were wearing bandages and gauze pads in various places around their bodies. "Glad to see you made it."
"Wow," Maya exclaimed. "You guys look, um, a little rough around the edges there."
Majima just scoffed. "Please, this is basically a Saturday for me."
Even though it's Monday, Phoenix thought to himself.
"Regardless," Kiryu cut in, "we're just glad you both are alright."
"Thanks, guys," Phoenix said. "Although I have to ask how you got that knife in here, Majima."
"You complainin'?" Majima replied. "In all seriousness, though, it's plastic. No metal detectors were gonna find this baby."
"I am impressed," Heihachi conceded. "But why bring it anyway?"
"One thing you quickly learn about the yakuza life, my friend," Majima answered; "you never know when a fight break will break out."
Heihachi laughed. "You should put that on your recruitment posters. I know I'm sold."
Phoenix just barely caught Heihachi's disturbing comment. An uncomfortable thought had entered his head when discussing the fight.
"What's up, Nick?" Maya asked.
"I was just thinking. If today has taught me anything, it's that Bison can and will come back at any moment. And if he does, I can't help but worry he may come after us again."
"I wouldn't worry about that, Mr. Phoenix Wright." Phoenix froze at the sound of the new voice. He turned and recoiled at the sight of Franziska walking toward him.
"Ms. von Karma! What are you doing here?"
"I was just passing by when I overheard you fools talking," Franziska answered. "Speaking of which…" She looked at Majima. "Just be aware that, despite your crime of smuggling a deadly weapon in this building, I will overlook it this time, given your involvement in apprehending Bison. Just know that my mercy has its limits."
"Whatever you say, lady," Majima said.
"But as I was saying," she continued to Phoenix, "you probably don't have to worry about Bison. He is a tyrant and perhaps the most evil person alive today. But he also doesn't concern himself with grudges. If anything, if and when he ever shows up again, he'll already begin working on new plans for world domination. So long as you find yourself fortunate enough to not be on his radar at that point, he'll have no reason to come after you."
"Well, uh, that's good to know," Phoenix remarked.
"Don't mistake this for sympathy, Mr. Phoenix Wright," she chastised. "I merely told you this as a courtesy. If I am to have my vengeance on you, I would rather you not already be a simpering mess fearful for your life."
Would it kill her to just say she cares after all? Phoenix thought. Oh, well. "Actually, I am kinda glad you showed up, Franziska. I have something to say."
Franziska snorted at this. "Whatever. Speak your piece before I lose interest. And you should know I have little to begin with."
"I just wanted to say thanks. For saving me from Bison earlier."
There was a slight pause after Phoenix spoke. It was broken by Majima, who said, "What the hell happened after we were knocked out?"
Franziska glared at Phoenix. "Don't read too much into it. I just could not bear to see another human being cut down in front of me. You may perceive me to be violent and petty…"
Mostly because you are.
"…but I am not a monster. I care very little about you, Mr. Phoenix Wright, but I would never wish you dead." She cracked her whip. "Not until you have fallen before me." The air in the room became tense. "I must take my leave now. Between clearing what remains of this case and making sure Bison is handed over to the proper authorities, I have much to do, and none of it involves the likes of you all." She turned toward the door and walked out haughtily.
"Real barrel a' monkeys, that one," Majima said.
"Maybe," Phoenix admitted, "but I get the feeling that was just her way of saying, 'You're welcome.'"
Before the conversation could continue, a new face stepped through the door, this one much more welcome. "Hey, boys. And lady."
"Ms. Aensland," Kiryu greeted. "Glad to see you're okay, as well."
"Sorry I'm late for the victory party," Morrigan said, "but I had to make sure Bison was going to sit tight until Interpol came along. At least I had some fun with one of the boys in blue while I was there."
"Morrigan, you didn't," Phoenix said exasperatingly.
"Relax," she defended, "it was just a little light teasing."
Knowing her, that could mean anything. Best not look too much into it.
"Thanks for your help, Morrigan," Maya said. "You really saved our bacon back there. Both with the testimony and Bison."
"Think nothing of it, Maya. Consider it a reward for saving me from boredom." Her face perked up a bit. "Actually, that reminds me." She waved her hand around and produced five levitating envelopes. "Demitri and I are holding a little get-together in Makai for everyone involved in that little world-crossing kerfuffle." The envelopes floated toward each of the other people in the room. "These invitations will tell you how to get there."
"Are you sure that's a good idea, Morrigan?" Phoenix asked. "I mean, wasn't the whole point of that 'kerfuffle' to keep the dimensions apart?"
"Please, I've been hopping between dimensions for years now. I know how to keep things open just long enough to get this party going. Besides, that rushed good-bye we all had wasn't exactly the best way to leave it off. I just felt that, after all that happened, we deserve a little celebration."
"C'mon, Nick!" Maya said excitedly. "It'd actually be kinda cool to see everyone again. I mean, no offense, but Xiaomu is a much better Steel Samurai companion than you."
"Trust me, Maya," Phoenix deadpanned, "none taken. But you're right; it would be nice seeing everyone again."
"If there's a party, you can count me in, babe," Majima added.
Kiryu spoke next. "We owe everyone our proper thanks for their help in ridding the worlds of Thanatos. I will be there."
"Eh, why not?" Heihachi said. "I'm a free man now, so it's not like I have to be anywhere important."
"Great," Morrigan said. "We'll see you then." With her task finished, she walked out the door.
Once she was gone, Maya said, "Hey, speaking of parties, we still need to celebrate Heihachi's verdict."
"Yeah, I figured you'd want that," Phoenix said. "But I'm not gonna argue with you."
"And I have the perfect idea," Maya continued. "I figured since we're in Japan, I'd try some of the local cuisine."
Well this should be a nice change of pace, Phoenix thought. Usually, it's hamburgers, hamburgers, or, just to shake things up, cheeseburgers.
"I heard that some restaurants here serve burgers with squid ink inside the buns. I've got to see it for myself!"
Other shoe: two. Wright: nada.
"In that case," Majima said, "I know this little joint in Kamurocho that has just what you're looking for. Food's good, service is great, and the waitresses ain't too bad, either. Whaddaya say, Kazzy? You in?"
"Seeing as this whole thing was for the benefit of Kamurocho," Kiryu said, "I can be easily persuaded."
"Normally, I don't do fast food; not exactly good muscle building material," Heihachi said. "But it's a special occasion, so I'll cave this one time."
"Awesome!" Maya cheered. "Lead the way, Majima! Nick, you're buying this time."
"This time?" Phoenix countered. "Every time we win a case, I'm always the one who picks up the tab. What's your excuse?"
"Um, I'm a spirit medium," Maya said derisively. "I'm supposed to live without the need for material wealth."
I'll be sure to keep that in mind for your next paycheck, Ms. Fey.
"Sorry, Professor," Kiryu added, "but whatever I make goes to the orphanage, no ifs, ands, or buts."
"I'm already paying your legal fees," Heihachi pointed out.
Majima looked a little embarrassed and said, "I, uh, might have left my wallet at home."
Hearing this was what did it; Phoenix froze for a moment, then sighed, hanging his head. "I just have one thing to say to you all."
"Oh, I know where this is going," Maya said playfully.
"Is he gonna say what I think he's gonna say?" Majima asked.
"Always does," Maya answered.
"Just say it, Professor," Kiryu said. "You'll feel better."
"Might as well make it loud while you're at it," Heihachi added. "Might help you with that stress issue."
"I warn you," Phoenix replied, "I can get pretty loud."
"You've said it nonstop today, Nick," Maya pointed out. "I think we're used to it by now."
"Alright, it's your eardrums.