Disclaimer: I do not own Apollo Justice or the rest of the Ace Attorney characters.
Please let me know if I should continue this story. It would be kind of interesting, but I have been a horrible updater in the past, which is why I'm reluctant to do so.
Kristoph was never one for children. Of course, he knew how to talk to them for information. He made children feel comfortable if he needed something from them, but he would never spend time with children by choice. His younger brother was enough of a child, even if he was technically an adult at age 18.
So when Kristoph wandered into the run down local high school, he was visiting for the sole purpose of questioning a witness. She happened to be an older, female English teacher, but that wasn't important. All that was needed was the testimony that would shatter the prosecution's case. Kristoph quickly glanced at the faded sign that read "Rm. 252," and entered the classroom.
Dim memories of his own high school days in Germany quickly faded to the back of his mind as the older woman spotted him. Ms. Smith had known he was coming, and so she quickly wrapped up her lecture.
"Now. Mr. Justice. Would you please start reading Chapter 3 out loud? Give it some GUSTO!" Ms. Smith said excitedly. Kristoph smirked at the irony of the name.
"Yes MA'AM" a skinny boy in the back shouted a little too loudly as the rest of the class snickered. Ms. Smith then turned and left the boy to read with his face beet red.
While Kristoph questioned the woman, who was quite cooperative with the whole affair, Kristoph started to listen to Chapter 3 of Animal Farm. The boy reading was very clearly, but often got a little too loud in parts, which prompted the whole room to cackle. Kristoph tried to ignore the situation and focus on the witness, who was giving quite a detailed and accurate account of the crime's events. Kristoph noticed the boy's face was still bright red, and he was beginning to sweat bullets. But he continued reading. His loud, raspy voice continued, as other kids began to throw wads of paper at his head, particularly his unusual hair.
"What are you looking at?" Ms. Smith asked quietly. She turned and saw the chaos in her room and ran inside.
"That's ENOUGH! Thank you Mr. Justice. The rest of you should be ashamed of yourselves. Peter! You read next. And there better be GUSTO!"
"YES MAAA"AAAM!" Peter shouted, in complete mockery of the Justice kid. Ms. Smith didn't seem to notice and ran back to join Kristoph.
"I'm sorry about that. Apollo gets picked on all the time, but he never complains about it."
"Hm…" Kristoph said dully. He was maybe only slightly curious as to the boy, but really couldn't care all that much.
"He's a foster kid you know? God knows the treatment he gets at school is better than his home life. He's quite gifted, and I wish he had someone that appreciated him." The teacher rambled on while Kristoph noticed something that caught his attention. Peter had started calling Apollo "Perfect Polly" and Apollo clenched his fist. Kristoph's eyes were drawn to the rather effeminate bracelet on his wrist, and he recognized it from somewhere, but he could not recall where.
"So, PERFECT POLLY, how does someone like you respond to this?" Peter mocked as he kicked Apollo hard in the stomach. The boy doubled over, but didn't scream. Ms. Smith still heard the commotion and quickly sent Peter to the security office. She took Apollo outside the classroom where Kristoph was standing.
"Apollo, are you…"
"I'm FINE, ma'am!" Apollo half-shouted, but then he quivered as blood trickled down his mouth. Kristoph couldn't help but notice the bruises all over the boy's arms. So, this was no new experience for the kid. Kristoph chuckled for no fathomable reason as Ms. Smith turned to him.
"Mr. Gavin, could you do me a favor and watch Apollo while I deal with Peter? I think he may have broken a rib."
"I said I'm FINE!" Apollo said a little more convincingly, but Ms. Smith was already gone, leaving Kristoph and Apollo alone.
Kristoph had no obligation to be nice to this kid except that he couldn't do anything to jeopardize his witness for his trial. Apollo looked nervous, as he kept flicking his antenna-like hair.
"You were very brave in there," Kristoph said honestly. Kristoph was actually impressed with this kid,
"N…no. I was scared…"
"A wise man once said that bravery is not having no fear, but facing the fear you have."
"W…Why do you care so much?" Apollo stammered, causing Kristoph to raise his eyebrows. Even Kristoph couldn't answer that question completely, but he could feign interest.
"I am simply concerned for your well-being after that scuffle. Isn't that enough?"
"No, since it's obvious that you're lying." Apollo said fiercely, clutching his bracelet.
Kristoph studied the boy carefully. Kristoph had prided himself in being uncannily difficult to read – to the point where lying was no different than the truth, yet this boy sensed it immediately. It wasn't a random guess either – Kristoph saw that the boy's eyes knew the truth without a single shred of doubt. He realized that this boy made him more curious than he had ever been before. Kristoph began to muse to himself.
Who is this kid? He's vulnerable enough to transform into a powerful asset in the future, yet he piques my interest.
"Have you ever considered studying law? You have quite the penchant for it," Kristoph asked, breaking the silence. The boy stared at him in disbelief.
"You mean…a lawyer?"
"Well, that is indeed someone who practices law."
"I don't have the money to go to school after graduation…" Apollo murmured, thinking it would be a miracle if he graduated at all.
"What if I helped you out a bit?" Kristoph asked, inwardly kicking himself.
I really am losing it. This boy must be something if I'm intrigued enough to consider lending money to this kid.
"Oh…oh no. I couldn't possibly…I mean, I'm really not that good at that kind of thing. Everyone laughs at me…"
"And you stood your ground when everyone doubted you, yes?" Kristoph whispered politely. "You need that…if you want to be a lawyer."
Apollo blushed and looked at his feet for a moment. But then, he lifted his head up and looked straight into Kristoph's eyes.
"I don't know why you're doing this, but you're the first person who seemed to think that I could succeed in something," Apollo spoke forcefully. "Whatever the reason is, I…well…thank you, sir!"
"Shouldn't we get going?" Kristoph asked, still smiling.
"Well, if you've made up your mind, we need to get home to prepare a second bedroom at my residence," Kristoph said matter-of-factly.
"You…Oh man, yes, SIR!" Apollo exclaimed gleefully (and loudly).
"Try to tone that down."
"…yes, sir," Apollo whispered, but his excitement was apparent as he skipped down the hallway. Kristoph looked at the boy and grinned devilishly.
You are a curious one, Mr. Apollo Justice. I'll make good use of you.
A/N: I actually had a teacher a few years ago that repeatedly used the phrase "Give it more gusto." It was too strange for me to make up. And please review! Tell me if it's worth continuing...