The world was still and grey, with not a sound to be heard or a flicker of movement. Three men were standing close together in the hospital room, each one of them both dreadfully confused and incredibly grim-faced at the same time. All of them had their identical coal-coloured eyes turned to face the bed in the centre of the room.
The motionless body found itself lying underneath white sheets for the sixth time in some years.
"Why do we do this?" asked a young college student with messy hair and garish clothing. His eyes were teary, and his breathing was erratic. Attempt One.
"...I don't know," replied a man in a cheap blue business suit and his hair slicked back. He ran his fingers through it, trying his best to avoid anybody's gaze. Attempts Two-Through-Four.
The eldest shrugged. "It's been like this so many times," he said, eyes closed. He was the one who bore the most resemblance to the body lying on the bed - old and creased clothing, bags under his eyes, stubble. He was tapping his foot impatiently, but his relaxed pose told otherwise. Attempt Five.
Now he was Attempts Five-and-Six.
"We shouldn't have tried this," Attempts Two-Through-Four growled, beginning to pace. "Maya - she'd be so upset. Pearls, I have no idea how this would impact on her at such a young age-"
"She's seventeen now," Attempts Five-and-Six cut in, "and she's certainly not who I'm worried about. Trucy needs a father."
"Oh, God, Dollie," Attempt One piped in. "I can't leave Dollie alone. Ever. I can't leave her. She's too sweet and good and beautiful."
Attempts Two-Through-Four shook his head. "That wasn't Dahlia and you know it. Don't even try to pretend."
"B-But... Fine. What about Ms Fey, then?" he asked, staring up at them with large eyes. He didn't understand a thing that had happened since thirteen years ago. He never had and he never would. That was his curse. "Ms Fey... she wouldn't want me to give up."
The other two looked over at him with sad expressions. "Ms Fey... Chief. Mia," Attempts Two-Through-Four mumbled. "If she ever knew just how many times I'd try... this, she'd... find a way to come back and destroy me. I know it. I've betrayed her so many times I shouldn't deserve to even be here."
Attempts Five-and-Six crossed his arms. "It's that mentality that put us here six times now. That stupid mentality of ours."
Attempts Two-Through-Four fiddled with his cuff, shrinking back as he tried to think of something to say to take the edge off things. There was very little to - the place was so still, and they were the only movement in that room. So few things around to even think about, let alone to change the subject with. So he spoke the first thing that came to his head while he sighed.
"...Edgeworth is going to be worried again."
All three of them understood what that meant. All three of them clutched one another, tense and frightened.
"Edgeworth hasn't spoken to me for a while," Attempt One said. "I only just found him. He never responded to my letters."
"It took three years to find him and another three to try and save him..." Attempts Two-Through-Four replied. "Three years to save the man who saved our life, and this is how we kept repaying him. Over and over."
"Him never finding out what happened until the day we tumbled from a bridge." Attempts Five-and-Six shook. "And then we had to tell him, and he hated us. We could tell..."
Attempt One gripped onto Attempts Two-Through-Four tightly, burying his head in the other's nape. "I'm scared. What if he finds out and he comes over?"
Attempts Two-Through-Four stroked his head with one hand and drew in Attempts Five-and-Six with the other. "I know how to deal with him. He's Edgeworth. He's easy to handle."
"But he hates us." Attempts Five-and-Six straightened his hat and nuzzled Attempts Two-Through-Four. "You don't know what happened when we talked to him. He hates us. He only helped us because he felt indebted to us and that was it."
"I don't know that Edgeworth." Attempts Two-Through-Four frowned. "Edgeworth could never hate us. I don't think he could hate anybody."
Attempts Five-and-Six stared back at the body. Their body, beaten and abused, and it was nobody's fault but theirs. Not von Karma's, not Gant's, not Engarde's, not Dahlia's, not Kristoph's, but their own, and nothing could change what they'd done.
Six suicide attempts; none successful, but six attempts nonetheless. Phoenix Wright should have died thirteen years ago.
"He should certainly hate us now."
AN: I have to admit, I felt a challenge was at hand when I came across that kink meme request. What was originally asked for was actually College!PhoenixXLawyer!PhoenixXHobo!Phoenix with them all getting together at the end of the angsting (?), which I thought sounded a little stupid to ask for... Then I looked back. Angst. Could I write this prompt while concentrating on the angst rather than the pairing, seeing as a threesome is a little hard to write?
The answer, my children, is yes.