Phoenix Wright: Serendipity.
Phoenix Wright is copyright of Capcom. No infringement is intended.
This is the biggest Phoenix Wright fic I've started so far, and one that answers the question: what if Phoenix and Maya had decided to take up Pearl's offer of the Honeymoon Suite she booked at the end of PW2?
Spoilers for PW2, particulary Case 4 are about, and there'll be some limey content in later chapters, so beware if that isn't your bag. Other than that, I hope you enjoy the story. Feedback is always welcome.
Phoenix's eyes blinked rapidly, hardly daring to believe the information the kindly desk clerk had just related to him
"What do you mean I can't cancel the room?!" He demanded.
"I'm sorry sir.." The clerk spoke, trying to sound as apologetic as possible. "But it's hotel policy. All of our executive rooms, including the honeymoon suite, are non-refundable, and all reservations are final. We get such demand for them you see, we simply can't afford to refund the cash for them."
"But I didn't even reserve the damn room!" Phoenix cried, exasperated.
"Your fiancée made the reservation in your name, sir."
"I'm not even engaged! She made the reservation." Phoenix pointed to the back of the hotel lobby, where Maya and Pearl were sitting with Detective Gumshoe.
The clerk blinked. "The… little girl reserved it?" He stared at Phoenix with a disturbed look.
"No no, not for us!" Phoenix flustered. "She did it for me and a friend of mine. She thinks we're dating for some crazy reason."
"Well, circumstances aside, you still need to pay for this room. We can let you pay it off in small installments...
Phoenix was only half-listening. Mentally, he was marking this upset as yet another piece of bad news he didn't need. He'd managed to convince Edgeworth, Lotta, Will Powers and Gumshoe to pay for their share of the huge celebration feast they'd just had (and braved a loud rant from Lotta after informing her that he wasn't paying for her new camera.) but there was no way to cancel the very expensive honeymoon suite Pearl had reserved for them. Add to that the mental anguish he'd gone through the last few days, and the bad word-of-mouth he'd probably earned during the trial… if he hadn't saved Maya, he would have considered it the worst day of his life.
And he hadn't even gotten paid for his troubles. "Another reason to want to kick that bastard Engarde's ass…"
While making money hadn't been a main factor in his becoming an attorney, he had looked forward to being able to live the rich lawyer lifestyle he'd seen on various TV shows. But as usual, reality was an altogether different animal. He just knew he'd be kicked out of his office by the landlord if he didn't get a client to help pay the rent. And after his performance in court today, he doubted any sane person would touch him with a ten-foot pole.
"Sir? Are you alright?" He heard the clerk ask.
"I'm thinking.." He answered, though truthfully, he was at a loss at what to do.
He looked over at Maya and Pearl again, the two of them now chatting excitedly with Gumshoe. Maybe Maya could help him out. Her family was one of the most prominent ones in Kurain, and they did have that massive mansion. How much money did spirit mediums make anyway?
"Real nice Wright." He berated himself. "She's been kidnapped, starved, frightened, and you decide to mooch on her for money."
Still, at least she seemed happy. He could see her smiling away as if nothing had happened. He'd always admired her ability to keep a positive attitude, even in the worst of times. He certainly wished she had been there during the trial. Mia had been there to help, but having Maya around to make light of the situation, as she often did, would have been some small comfort.
"Guess I'd never fully realized how much I'd missed having her around… until she was gone.."
"Mr Phoenix Wright?" A new voice shook him out of his thoughts, and he looked up to see an average-looking man standing before him, wearing a cap and a jacket with the words GLOBAL STUDIOS emblazoned on them. He held a small mobile phone in his hand.
"Er.. yes, that's me." He answered cautiously, wondering what bad luck was about to befall him now.
The man held out the phone for him to take. "I was asked by my boss to give this to you. She's waiting on the other end."
"She?" Phoenix enquired. The man offered no further explanation, so he decided to bite the bullet and take the phone. Flipping it open, he immediately got a call.
He pressed answer and held it to his ear. "Hello?"
"Ah, Mr Wright." A husky, female voice replied. "I'm glad I was able to get hold of you."
Phoenix's jaw dropped. Of all the people he'd met in his career, this was one of the last he'd expected to hear from again.
Maya couldn't help but marvel as she saw Detective Gumshoe's face light up as he received a call from Police Headquarters. After hearing about all the poor man had gone through during her kidnapping, it was nice to see him finally catch some good luck.
"… Well, thank you Sir. I'm honoured, I really am! Thank you! I'll be in on Monday. Again, thank you!"
"Good news, Detective?" Maya asked as he hung up.
"I'll say!" Gumshoe grinned. "The Chief of Police was so impressed on how I helped out on the case, he offered me my job back. And I get my old rate of pay. I can finally afford the good ramen again."
"That's fantastic! After all you've done for us, you totally deserve it." Maya cheered.
Gunshoe rubbed the back of his head sheepishly. "Well, the work is its own reward really. I was just glad to help. Getting the job back is a nice bonus though."
"Well, you earned it." She stood on tiptoe and gave the detective a peck on the cheek. "I'm really grateful for all you did."
Gumshoe just shrugged. "Hey don't thank me, I was just the messenger. It was Wright, Miss von Karma and Mr Edgeworth who really saved the day."
"Yeah, they really pulled it off…" Maya glanced over to where Phoenix was arguing with the desk clerk. She didn't know exactly what had happened in court while she was trapped, but considering that he and Edgeworth had managed to convict Matt Engarde and outwit Shelly de Killer, she could only imagine the court proceedings had been epic.
Gumshoe checked his watch. "Well, I gotta head back to the station. I need to fill in a report on what happened today. Say, you mind coming down tomorrow? Mr Edgeworth is gonna want a statement about what you experienced while de Killer had you."
Maya nodded. "I'll be there with bells on. You have a nice night Detective."
"Yeah, you too pal. Tell Wright I said congratulations." Stifling a yawn, Gumshoe made his way out.
"Mr Gumshoe is so cool." Pearl piped up as she saw Gumshoe leave. "They way he rushed back here to get the evidence Mr Nick needed..."
Maya smiled. "Yeah, just when you think he's totally hopeless, he goes and surprises you." She looked back at Phoenix, whose argument with the desk clerk seemed to be more heated.
"What's Mr Nick doing?" Pearl asked.
"Probably trying to cancel that honeymoon suite you ordered." She replied sternly, looking at Pearl with an accusing gaze. "I still can't believe you actually did that. You can't just go around wasting Nick's money like that."
"I'm sorry…" Pearl said softly. "I just wanted to get you and Mr Nick something to cheer you both up."
"Fine, but get something practical, like… a new lamp for the office, or some Steel Samurai DVDs. What use are we going to have for a hotel room that's just a short walk from where Nick lives?"
"But… but I heard somewhere that a honeymoon suite is a special room." Pearl spoke innocently. "It's special because only you and your special someone can enter."
Maya sighed. How many times had they had this discussion? "Pearly, Nick is not my special someone, alright? He's just my friend, that's all."
"You care about him a lot though, right?"
"Well, of course."
"And you spend all your time helping him out here when you should be in Kurain, training."
"So do you, might I point out?"
"And you talk about him all the time. It's almost always 'Mr Nick did this, or Mr Nick did that.."
"No I…" Maya stopped. Now that she thought about it, she did talk to Pearl, and anyone else who would listen, about her exploits in court with Nick a lot. She couldn't help it, the cases were so interesting, and it was always great to see Nick dish out a verbal smackdown to his opponents..
She checked herself. "Pearl, just because I like hanging out with Nick, doesn't mean I lo… like him that way."
Pearl stared at her with wide eyes. "Why not? He's really kind, really smart…"
"So are Mr Edgeworth, Detective Gumshoe and a lot of other people." Maya said. "That doesn't mean I want to go out with them on a date."
"I know that!"
"So why do you keep insisting me and Nick are a couple?"
Pearl's forehead scrunched as she tried to think of a suitable explanation.
"I just… feel it, I guess. You and Mr Nick have a special bond between you. I could feel it when you told me about him, and when I saw Mr Nick trying to help you back in Kurain. And when you came back after the trial and you hugged each other.. it just felt right."
Maya was skeptical. "I think you've been watching too many chick flicks on TV, Pearly."
"What's a 'chipflik?'
"Um.. never mind."
"The point is, I don't think I've ever seen two people care for each other like you and Mr Nick do. You can't ignore that there's something there.." Pearl crossed her arms smugly, daring Maya to make a response.
"Well Pearly, you can just tell that to Nick when he comes over and asks you to pay for that honeymoon suite." Maya smirked.
Pearl paled at that. "I.. I guess I should say sorry.."
Maya took her hand. "Come on, let's tell him now, before he gets too angry." She glanced over at Phoenix. "Wonder who he's talking to.."
"The cat seems to have caught your tongue, Mr Wright. You do remember me, don't you?"
"I do, yes.." Phoenix spoke warily. He remembered all too well the amount of grief Dee Vasquez had given him during the trial of Will Powers. Not to mention that she had driven a man to try and kill her, and that she possibly had ties to some shady, illegal businesses. This was a woman you had to be careful with.
"I wasn't aware you were still with Global Studios." He probed.
"Yes, though I have other people to run that for me now.. but enough about me, this concerns you."
Phoenix visibly trembled. "Me?"
"Simply put Mr Wright, I wish to thank you for all your work in this trial."
"Eh?" This he hadn't expected. "You're thanking me? No offence, but I just put one of your biggest stars in jail. The Nickel Samurai himself. And you're happy about that?"
"The Nickel Samurai problem is one we can easily solve." Vasquez replied, unfazed. "However, had Engarde actually been declared innocent, it could very well have finished the studio. Imagine, having a famous actor with the stigma of possibly committing murder on our payroll. The media attention would have been deplorable. I had invested a lot of money in the studios Mr Wright, and after restoring our reputation after that Will Powers incident, I wasn't about to let it all crumble to dust again."
"Nice to know you've got your priorities straight.." Phoenix thought sarcastically.
"But aside from all that… you and your friend Edgeworth were able to reveal to everyone, including me, just what a vile little louse that prick Engarde actually is. You may think of me what you like Mr Wright, but I do value trust between me and my subordinates, and it was obviously misplaced in Engarde. I dread to think what might have happened if he had continued to work for us."
"Well, I hated the guy too." Phoenix spoke up, feeling a bit braver now that they were on common ground. "So, why are you calling me again?"
"Like I said, I wished to express my thanks. You saved from a lot of bother further down the road, and I always show the proper respect to those who have aided me."
"Try telling that to Jack Hammer.." Phoenix thought dryly.
""My man Quentin should have an envelope for you. It contains what you would have been paid for your legal fees, and a little extra."
The man in the jacket pulled out a small white envelope and held it out. Phoenix took it gingerly between two fingers, as if it was about to explode. Which was quite possible considering all he'd seen in his career.
He carefully opened it, and peered inside to see a bank cheque. His eye's turned to saucers when he read the amount written on it.
"This… this is for twenty-five thousand dollars!"
"A small dent from the revenues we've made from the Pink Princess and Nickel Samurai merchandising."
Phoenix was momentarily awestruck. He'd never held this much money before in all his life. But he kept himself within reason. There had to be a catch to all of this.
"Okay, so what's the catch?"
"I do have one stipulation. If you are interviewed about this whole event, and I'm sure you will be, I ask that you deny that Global Studios had any involvement in this whole mess. You may also want to deny any involvement with us as well. I'm sure someone may think there's a connection between this and your prior case with Mr Powers. Frankly, I would appreciate as little publicity on us as possible, and I certainly don't need you adding more fuel to the fire."
"What, does she think I'm a blabbermouth?" He thought. "And that's all?"
"If you wish Mr Wright, we can have no further correspondence after this. Though I must admit, after seeing your performance back there, I'd think you'd make an excellent addition to my legal team. Or the writing staff at the studios."
Pushing his annoyance down, Phoenix thought carefully about it. This money would certainly help him out with running the office, and maybe even improving his business, which is what he really needed right now. But did he really want to take it from Dee Vasquez of all people. He didn't like the idea of him ending up under her thrall like Jack Hammer had been.
It seemed his whole life, or at least the last few years, had been like this. Him forced between two choices, and not knowing which one to take for fear of not knowing what would happen. Just once, he wished things were straight-forward..
"Nick? Pearl has something she wants to say." He looked up to see Maya and Pearl walking toward him. Pearl looked worried about something, while Maya had her sights set on him, her eyes questioning as to what was holding him up. A crazy idea hit him. Perhaps Maya would have some insight for him. Despite her ditsy nature, he knew that she was pretty damn smart when she wanted to be.
"One moment Miss Vasquez…" He covered the phone and focused on Maya. "Say Maya, I have a question for you."
"Eh?" Maya blinked, not expecting this. "I had some for you, like who are you talking to?"
"Please Maya, it's important." He begged.
Her expression softened as she recognized an opportunity to be useful. "Um, okay. Shoot."
Phoenix took a deep breath. "Okay.. say I was offered something which would really help out the law office.. and personally make me very happy. But I would have to accept from someone who showed some… questionable actions in the past, and could possibly do so again. Should I take it or not?"
Maya frowned in thought. "It's not Mr Edgeworth, is it? Did he owe you some money before he left for a year?"
"No.." Phoenix sighed. "This is… something else."
Maya tapped her forehead in thought. "Well, it seems to be a no-brainer to me. You should do what's best for your clients."
He blinked. "My.. clients?"
"Of course!" She frowned at him. "How are you going to help people in court if your office is a dump and you're a sadsack with nothing to live for? If you're happy, then your clients will be happy, and you'll be able to help them better than before." She grinned. "Pretty obvious really. I know it's what my sister would say."
Phoenix couldn't help but smile. Maya always did have a way of boiling everything down to the important points.
He took up the phone again. "Miss Vasquez.. I'd be delighted to accept the cheque."
Vasquez gave a small sigh of satisfaction. "Excellent Mr Wright. That makes us even. Now remember, you are not to suggest any involvement of Global Studios in this incident. In fact, this phone call never happened, you understand?"
"Umm… what phone call?" He replied with mock innocence.
"Good, keep it that way. Farewell, Mr Wright. Perhaps we'll meet again one day." She hung up.
"Hopefully, not in this lifetime…" Phoenix thought. He handed the phone back to the gofer, who politely bowed and walked off. Phoenix stared at the envelope again, hardly daring to believe his luck.
"Um… Nick? What just happened?" Maya was staring at the envelope too, eager for answers. "You haven't done anything dangerous, have you?"
"I certainly hope not." He replied. "But there's some good news."
He turned back to the waiting desk clerk. "Can you cash this in for me? I should be able to pay off that room now."
Pearl was jumping for joy. "Hooray! Mystic Maya and Mr Nick are getting the room of love!"
"What?!" Maya shrieked. "Pearl, we're not…"
"I knew this was a great idea. You and Mr Nick will have a great time!"
Maya stared daggers at Phoenix, who just smirked. "I'm gonna get you for this.."
"So Dee Vasquez gave you all that cash just for putting Matt Engarde away?" Maya asked incredulously. The three of them were riding the elevator up to the top floor, where the fabled Honeymoon suite awaited.
"I know, I still can't believe it." Phoenix replied. He was staring at a bank receipt he'd received after depositing the cash into his account at the nearest cashpoint. "I suppose I can see her point though. I'd probably pay big money to get rid of Engarde too."
"It's a good investment.." Maya wringed her fists. "Ooh, I can't believe that scumbag actually played the Nickel Samurai! How could an evil jerk like him get the role of a hero? He should have been the Evil Magistrate!"
Phoenix couldn't help but snigger. "Yeah, he would have been a shoe-in for that role. Even when he was his true self, he was over the top."
"I know.. that stupid brandy decanter of his. What was the point? And what was with that scar of his? Did Juan Corrida give it to him?"
"Who knows? Maybe he just thought it would make him look more menacing."
"Fat chance. He probably scratched himself combing his hair."
They all laughed loudly, glad to take some pleasure from the man who had almost ruined their lives. After being subjected to his whims for the last few days, it felt good to mock him for what he really was.
"Still, I can't help but wonder if this will come back and bite us one day." Maya said. "I mean, Dee Vasquez had Jack Hammer under her thumb for years. She might do the same to you."
"Maybe.. but I got the feeling from her that she wants this whole thing to blow over, for the sake of her company. And we've given her no reason to want to come after us."
Maya didn't look entirely convinced, as she looked at him with eyes clouded with doubt. Phoenix took her hand and squeezed it, the comforting motion bringing a smile to her face.
"We'll be okay, I promise. If anything comes up, I'll try and deal with it." He declared.
"I know you will." Maya nodded. "After all this, I'm sure you can do anything."
A warm feeling rushed through him at that moment. He wasn't sure what it was.. but the longer her held her hand, the more he felt it…
Pearl tugged at Phoenix's sleeve, shaking him from his thoughts. His hand released Maya's.
"We're at the floor Mr Nick."
The elevator doors opened, and the three walked across the plush carpet of the corridor to reach an ornate door marked 'Honeymoon Suite'
"Well, here we are." Phoenix pulled out a keycard and gave it to Maya. "Are you sure you really want to spend the night here?"
Maya pouted. "I spent three days sitting in a cold wine cellar. I think I'm entitled to a little luxury." She grinned. "Besides, I've always wanted to see inside a really fancy hotel room, see how the other side lives."
"I want to see what's makes this room so special for couples." Pearl's eyes were bright with delight. "It must have some sort of magic in it that makes people love each other."
"Not always.." Phoenix thought to himself. Best not to shatter Pearl's illusions until she was older.
"You looking forward to it too Nick?" Maya asked.
"You are staying, right?"
Phoenix looked sheepish. "Well… I really didn't want to spend the night here. I just thought you two would enjoy it more than me."
"WHAT!!?" Pearl looked heartbroken. "But you have to come in! How else will you and Mystic Maya get together?!"
"Pearl.." Maya sighed.
"Look, I'm not really a fan of fancy, high-end stuff like Edgeworth is." Phoenix explained. "And besides, I think you and Pearl deserved it, after all you've been through these past few days."
Maya scowled at him. "What we've been through? What about you?"
"You deserve to have this room as much as anyone. You were the one fighting to save me. By rights, we should be giving you cool stuff."
"Maya, it's okay.."
"No it's not! I'm not going in there until you agree to relax and join us. We're all going to celebrate, and that means you! We're not leaving you alone!"
Phoenix flinched at the steely stare Maya had fixed on him. It almost reminded him of the angry glares Franziska von Karma had aimed at him it court, the ones daring him to make a move.
He looked at the door again. After all he'd been through, would it really be so bad to indulge himself for once. The idea was appealing, but in the back of his mind, a small voice kept speaking.
"You don't deserve this… why should you, after what you did in that courtroom…"
But he looked at Maya and Pearl again, and found his answer. If nothing else, he didn't want to leave Maya alone again. She needed her friends around her.
"Well, if you insist.." He sighed. Maya and Pearl cheered in delight.
"Yes! Let's go Nick! This is going to be so much fun!"
Phoenix just shrugged. Once again, his self-appointed assistant was dragging him into parts unknown. But this time, he felt a little less anxious.
After all, it was just, him, Maya and Pearl in a room together. What could possibly happen?
to be continued...