Phoenix Wright, ace attorney and renowned public defender, wanted to kill himself.
His eyes, bloodshot and swollen, scanned his office for weapon potential. There were few things that struck his fancy, as bludgeoning himself with a heavy book or drowning himself in the toilet were not options that he was keen to trying. He supposed he could fashion a shiv out of the blinds, but his limbs were filled with lead and quite honestly, he didn't feel like it in the first place.
Fetching his cell phone from beneath the couch, he scanned through his address book looking for accomplices. He paused at Miles Edgeworth's number. It was actually the number to the secretary that could connect him to Edgeworth, but it was good enough. A quick press of the green "call" button set the phone line ringing, and he oozed back onto the couch while he waited.
After four rings, a bubbly woman answered and chirped the name of the offices and how can she help you. Grunting, he rasped into the phone, "Miles Edgeworth, please."
"Oh my! May I ask who is calling?"
A few moments of white noise fell over their conversation as the secretary paused. He realized the source of her confusion. His last name was, after all, a homophone.
"Phoenix Wright, ma'am."
"Oh! My apologies, sir, I'll put you right through!"
Jazz music quietly sang to him while she connected his call to his rival. His eyes slid shut, reminding him of the scratchy dry feeling he'd been feeling for a few days now, and a deep breath wheezed from his lungs.
"Hi, Edgeworth. It's Phoenix. I need your help in my office, and bring a gun if you've got one."
"What the hell are you talking abou—"
He hung up.
He figured if anyone would do the deed for him, it would be Edgeworth. After all, the man practically hated his guts, and moreover it would be good for business. Had he the energy, he'd leave a note saying he did it himself.
Phoenix shifted, then, pressing his face against the cool leather of his office couch. He was burning up, could quite possibly burst into flames at any second. While he waited for his rival to arrive, he allowed himself a small nap, stretching his legs out before him. It was a short walk between their offices, and an even shorter drive for Edgeworth's sports car, but he could hardly stay awake as it was.
Minutes passed, marked by rivulets of sweat running down his chest. He was nearly naked, clad only in a pair of old boxers, but his body still felt akin to a furnace.
When the other attorney did show up, it was marked by a great deal of commotion outside his door. He made an effort to lift his head from the couch just as Edgeworth rushed in the door, wielding a pistol in his right hand and his open cell phone in the other.
"Hi, Edgeworth." His voice had finally given out, and the greeting was a thick whisper. He sniffled once while his future assailant sputtered in disbelief. "I'm glad you could come. Now, if you could just—"
"Phoenix Wright, what the hell is this all about!?"
"I'm dying. I thought you might be kind enough to put me out of my misery." He offered a small smile.
"I thought you were being murdered!"
"Hopefully, yeah. Heh." He coughed violently before resting his head on the couch once more.
Edgeworth replaced the gun's safety and slammed it down onto Phoenix's desk, much to the ailing man's dismay. His head was pounding, and the loud noise spoke volumes to his migraine. Edgeworth was furious with him, and if he were conscious enough to gain coherency, he may have wetted himself from the glare he was being given. The man was attempting to curse at him, but his rage allowed only phrases of what Phoenix was sure would have been eloquent—though deadly—condemnations.
When Edgeworth regained his composure, he turned on Phoenix with a look that could have wilted asphalt.
"How dare you."
"This…this debacle. What were you thinking, Wright?" The attorney advanced on him and towered over his body. His face was twisted in fury. "All you say is 'I need help in my office, bring a gun' and now you have me show up thinking that you were actually in trouble only to find you lazing about on the couch? Are you mad?"
"If you aren't going to kill me, could you at least get me a glass of water?" His few trials with the livid beast in front of him had seasoned his mind, and where lesser men may have cowered, Phoenix was simply exasperated with his scolding. He was too sick for this, and if he was going to be arguing, he'd rather have his voice back for it, at the very least.
"A glass of water."
"Yeah, from the bathroom. It's right over there."
"You are positively pathetic, Wright."
"No, I'm sick. Good try, though." His fatigue prevented him from holding back his snarky comments, which, in a rather peculiar fashion, seemed to calm the prosecution attorney. He watched idly as Edgeworth stormed into the small restroom and returned a moment later with a paper cup full of what he hoped would be cold water.
"Here. Drink up, before you whine yourself into dehydration."
"Thank you, Miles." He attempted to lift his arm and take the water from where it was being held delicately in front of him. His muscles ached terribly, however, and when he grasped the small cup, his hand trembled violently with the strain. The cool liquid splashed over the rim and onto the floor, nearly catching Edgeworth on his sleeve. The man's brows narrowed dangerously, and the water was hastily retracted from Phoenix's reach.
"You're making this up. You're enjoying this, seeing me standing here like a fool. Fantastic prank, Wright. Hilarious." The cup was viciously crushed, spilling the rest of its contents onto the carpet.
Phoenix sighed, defeated. "Edgeworth, do you really think I'd have called you here if I didn't actually need your help? I really hate to take up your time like this, but I'm not feeling well at all." He sat up, fighting vertigo, and held his head against his knees for a moment. "As messed up as it might seem, you're one of the only friends I've got. Or would you have preferred me to call Larry Butz in here? He'd probably end up poisoning me and you'd have to prosecute him, too."
A snort punctuated his point, and Edgeworth knelt in front of him. "Look at me, Wright."
Two blue eyes rose to meet the attorney. Phoenix considered that Edgeworth might just punch him and knock him unconscious for lack of having to deal with him, but instead a soft wrist was pressed to his forehead. It felt quite cool against his skin, and his eyes closed once more in enjoyment.
"You've certainly got a temperature. How long have you been like this?"
"Couple days. I didn't think it would get this bad."
"Lay down, Wright." He didn't have to ask twice. Phoenix could hear Edgeworth shuffling around the office, and although he was a bit shocked to finally have the man's cooperation, he was very, very relieved. A cold, wet washcloth was pressed against his forehead, and another against his chest. "Here, take these."
He looked groggily at the man's offer, finding two white pills and another cup of water. "What…?"
"Ibuprofen. They're a muscle relaxant. They'll help to bring your fever down a bit as well."
He swallowed them without any further questions, relishing the feel of the cold fluid soothing his throat. When he was finished, he flopped back onto the couch, feeling quite content to vegetate. Every few minutes or so, Edgeworth would replenish the cold washcloths, paying utmost attention to Phoenix's fever. He worked with the diligence of a doctor, pleased that Phoenix had exhausted himself out of small talk. Once he was satisfied with the defense attorney's body temperature, he retrieved two more small caplets and another cup of water for his patient. Phoenix had long since fallen asleep, and although Edgeworth could have left without spending any more time with his rival, he stayed, listening to the smaller man breathe.
It was comforting to him, to have a friend. Awkward, sure, but Phoenix had called him for help before his other grade school friend, and it sparked a bit of absurd pride within his gut.
Dusting his hands needlessly, he rose, planning to leave. A chuckle perforated the air when he retrieved his gun—for a moment, he had been fully prepared to deal with the consequences of murder. Phoenix had sounded not unlike a hostage over the phone, with his raspy voice and brief request. Upon arrival Edgeworth had nearly shot him anyway.
He looked down at the sleeping man, bemused. A quick glance around the room proved that they were alone, and so he leaned delicately to kiss the sopping washcloth on Phoenix's forehead.
His façade of hating the younger attorney was necessary for appearances, but false. In truth, he rather liked him. The prosecution attorney had often found himself feeling jealous of the defense, wishing that he had developed the charisma that the other man had.
Slipping his pistol inside of his jacket, Edgeworth prepared to leave. He slipped a small notebook out of his pocket and popped the cap from the attached pen. With it, he jotted his personal number down neatly and folded the small paper.
Not wanting to invite undesirable callers, he searched briefly for a private place to leave the note. He supposed that he could leave it in Wright's desk, but any number of his makeshift assistance might go snooping. The last thing he needed was a troop of preteen women after him. Glancing down once more, he sighed. A blush rose on his cheeks and he averted his eyes as his fingers deftly tucked the folded piece of paper into the waistband of Phoenix's boxers.
Judging from the man's reputation, no one would be looking there any time soon.
With that, he left, shutting the door behind him quietly. He knew he'd be back.
It was only a matter of time, with cases like these.