Summary: Apollo Justice is obsessed with learning about Phoenix Wright's past, but he never knew there was another person who is equally obsessed: a young woman named Pearl Fey.
Pearl Fey decided to leave Kurain Village to get a law degree at UCLA.
Maya cried when Pearl moved out. "You're leaving me, just like Mom! Just like Mia! Just like Nick!"
"Everything will be fine," Pearl reassured her. "I promise, I won't even think about Mr. Nick. I want to be a lawyer for me, not for him."
Her promise not to think of Phoenix Wright lasted exactly one week.
To be fair, it wasn't Pearl's fault. It was one of the boys in her dorm—he thought she was cute and asked her out on a date, for the movies Friday night.
Something about the way he phrased his request struck Pearl.
Without thinking about it, a tear rolled down Pearl's cheek.
Friday night was movie night. Every week, Maya and Phoenix (and sometimes Pearl) watched a movie together, no matter what else was going on in their lives.
It had been one of their traditions before...before it happened.
It being when Phoenix was disbarred.
They said he was convicted of using false evidence, even though there was no way he would knowingly break the law like that.
He never spoke to either of the Feys again. In fact, he never saw the Feys again. The last time they heard from him was a week later, when he sent Maya a letter.
I should have told you this in person, but you've probably figured it out by now—I can't see you anymore. I know this must be hard for you to believe, but I'm no longer the man you once knew. When one phoenix dies, a new phoenix is born from the ashes. That's me, Maya. The old Phoenix is dead. A new Phoenix has risen to take his place.
Goodbye, Maya. We won't see each other again, and that's for the best. Take good care of Pearl.
PS. Please take this. I can't keep it around anymore. It reminds me too much of you and the man I used to be.
Enclosed within the letter was Maya's magatama.
It had been a long time before Maya had stopped crying after that.
"How could it end like that?" Pearl asked no one in particular. "He ruined Maya's life. He ruined my life."
Sure, she had partly come to UCLA in hopes of hearing something about him. Somehow, a part of her still believed that Phoenix Wright was out there somewhere, still practicing law. But now it felt like that was just a foolish dream—the dream of a ten-year-old who believed Phoenix and Maya were soul mates.
When would she grow up?
A few days later, Pearl's friends insisted on cheering her up. She had been moody and distracted that whole week, and they were going to make her feel better no matter what.
So they took her to a magic show, starring a young magician named Trucy Wright.
What a horrible choice for a place to cheer Pearl up.
Trucy ended up being a young girl who was enthusiastic about the wonders of magic. Pearl's friends had a good time, but Pearl couldn't get into it. There are some troubles you can't solve by waving a wand and saying, "Abracadabra."
Trucy noticed that Pearl wasn't enjoying herself—being a stage performer, Trucy was always on the lookout for people who weren't enjoying the show—so during the intermission, Trucy stopped to talk with Pearl.
"Are you Pearl?" she asked.
"Yes," Pearl said.
"Your friends said they brought you here to make you happy," Trucy said. "But you don't look happy."
"Right..." Pearl said, not wanting to talk. "That's because I'm not happy."
"Why not?" Trucy asked. "Is there anything I can do that would make things better? Magic should be enjoyed by everyone!"
"Can you change the past?" Pearl asked.
"Then there isn't anything you can do to make me feel better," Pearl said.
"Did you have a good night, honey?" Phoenix asked.
"No," Trucy said. "I didn't make everyone happy tonight."
"Are you serious? What crowd wouldn't love you?"
"The crowd liked the magic show," Trucy said. "But there was a group of college kids who brought their friend with them to cheer her up, and she was sad the whole time!"
"You can't win them all," Phoenix said.
"She was strange. I asked her if there was a special trick I could do to make her happy, and she said she wanted to change the past. Poor Pearl..."
"That was her name. Pearl Something."
Phoenix shook his head. It couldn't be her.
"Well, Trucy, magic can't do everything..." Phoenix started to say.
"Yes it can!" Trucy said. "I can do anything with my magic! Magic is supposed to make everyone happy, but it didn't make her happy! Maybe I'm a bad magician..."
Phoenix hugged his daughter. "You're a great magician, Trucy. Just forget about it, okay? It's nothing to worry about."
Later that night, Phoenix went to his back room where he kept his souvenirs from...before. There weren't many left: an empty bottle of Luminol, the clock/statue of "The Thinker" and one of Edgeworth's cravats. Where was...?
Ah, there it was.
Phoenix pulled out a picture of himself, Maya and Pearl on vacation at an amusement park. They agreed to have their photograph taken together, and...
We look so happy...
Maybe I should call Maya...
Phoenix shook his head. What good would calling do? Too much time had passed. What could he possibly say to make things up to her? "Hi, Maya, sorry for abandoning you seven years ago. Wanna meet up for some burgers?"
Yes, when it first happened, Phoenix was an emotional wreck. Recently fired, trying to deal with the fact that he now had a daughter...he couldn't handle it. He followed Edgeworth's example and took a year off to find himself.
It was a great year. He had really gotten to know Trucy and come to grips with his new life as her father.
But when he returned to Los Angeles...
It was too late.
He wanted to call Maya, to see her and Pearl again...but he had been gone a year. What do you say to someone when you drop out of their life so suddenly like that?
He had come close to calling her a few times, sure. Once he did call. But as soon as he heard her voice, he hung up. He couldn't think of anything to say.
What if she couldn't forgive him?
Time marched on, as it always does, and soon, one year stretched into two. Then three.
If it was too late to call Maya after one year, then calling now was out of the question.
No. No, wait. That's not right. I will call her someday. As soon as I prove that I'm really innocent...it has to happen sometime soon because of Apollo...right?
If only Apollo Justice knew that he was Phoenix Wright's only hope...
"Are you okay, Mr. Wright?"
"Hmmm? Oh, I'm fine, Apollo."
"You were looking at me funny."
Phoenix laughed half-heartedly. "Sorry about that. I was just busy thinking about...other things."
"Nothing that concerns you, I'm afraid."
Phoenix got up and slammed his hands on the table.
"Actually, Apollo, I'm giving you the day off. There are some things I need to do, so the Talent Agency will be closed today."
Phoenix was going to the Main Court House to talk about the Jurist System trial again, but there was no need to tell Apollo about it. The pressure might crush him.
"Okay," Apollo said, trying not to sound annoyed. "I've got things I need to do, too."
Apollo frowned as he left the office. Mr. Wright was keeping secrets again. Just like the secret of what happened seven years ago—all Apollo ever got were hints to what happened. He never got the truth.
Well, if Mr. Wright wouldn't tell him, Apollo would just have to take matters into his own hands.
He tried asking Ema Skye about it, but she didn't know much more than he did. Her suggestion was, of course, to try scientific investigation.
"How do you scientifically investigate something that happened seven years ago?"
"It was big news, right? That means there have to be records somewhere! Just look scientifically!"
And that was why Apollo headed for the law archives at UCLA. He figured that they should have a copy of the transcript from the trial where Mr. Wright was debarred.
The only problem was that Apollo had no idea which trial that was. So basically, the only way to find the right transcript was to go through all the records for that year until he found the one he was looking for.
What a fun way to spend my day off... Apollo thought sarcastically.
To make things worse, there was a brown-haired girl going through the archives. The very same archives he wanted to go through.
"Are you going to be done with the machine soon?" Apollo asked.
"Sorry," the girl said. "I'm probably going to be here for a while. I'm looking for the transcript for the Zac Gramayre trial, but I don't know where it is in here."
"Maybe I can help," Apollo suggested. "When was the trial?"
"Seven years ago," the girl said. "I don't know the exact date."
"Well, I'm looking for a transcript from seven years ago, too," Apollo said. "Maybe we can look together."
"Okay," the girl said. "I'm Pearl Fey, by the way."
The two of them shook hands.
Back in Kurain, Iris and Maya were having a quiet lunch together.
"Is anything wrong?" Iris asked. "You haven't said anything since lunch began."
Maya sighed. "I miss Pearl," she said.
"I do, too. Things seem a little more lonely around here without her."
"Why'd she have to become a lawyer?" Maya asked.
"She wants to help other people," Iris said. "You know that."
Maya's face was contorted with bottled-up emotion. "I think I hate lawyers," she said.
"It's true! My sister died because she was a lawyer, a lawyer killed my mother, and lawyers have tried to sentence me to life in prison three times! They're all evil!"
"You don't hate lawyers," Iris said. "You're just upset about Phoenix."
Iris had been the only Fey to see Phoenix after he was disbarred, because the law required that her lawyer be there when she was discharged from prison. He looked rather scruffy, but happy. He also had a young girl with him, who he introduced as his daughter Trucy.
Iris never told anyone about this. After all, Iris reasoned, if Maya knew Phoenix left her behind because he had a child with some unknown woman...
...Well, that knowledge might hurt Maya more than it would help her. And she was hurting enough as it was.
"I just can't believe it! He was my best friend, he saved my life more times than I can count, and he just abandons us one day without telling us why? He...he's..."
Tears appeared in Maya's eyes.
"My God, Iris, what if Pearl does the same thing?" she asked.
"Oh..." Iris said, giving Maya a supportive hug. "Is that what you're worried about? You think Pearl is going to leave like Nick did?"
"Uh huh..." Maya said weakly.
"You shouldn't have to worry about that. It's ridiculous! Pearl would never leave us!"
"But she left Kurain to go to law school..." Maya said. "And besides, I thought Nick would never leave me and..."
"Pearl's different than Nick," Iris said. "She's family. Family members stick together no matter what."
"But our family has such a violent history," Maya countered. "The Feys never stick together."
"Well...you are the Master of Kurain," Iris said. "If you ordered Pearl to do something, she'd have to obey. You could tell her to come back if you really want her to."
"No, I know I shouldn't stop her from doing what she wants..." Maya said. "It's just...why a lawyer?"
"She wants to help other people," Iris repeated. "She wants to help them by finding out the truth."
"Who, though? Who does she want to help?"
After twenty minutes of going through the records trial by trial, Apollo and Pearl were bored out of their skulls.
"The State VS Charles Hunderuck. Winston Payne Prosecutor, Marvin Grossberg Defense."
"Von Karma VS the State. Franziska von Karma Prosecutor, Daniel Davenforth Defense."
"Von Karma VS Daniel Davenforth. Franziska von Karma Prosecutor, Daniel—"
"This is taking forever!" Pearl complained. "Why can't they file these things by name, not just date? I would have found the State VS Zac Gramayre trial by now!"
"At least you know what trial you're looking for," Apollo pointed out. "All I know is that I'm looking for a certain trial with Phoenix Wright as defense."
Pearl blinked. "Did you say Phoenix Wright?"
"Have you heard of him? He used to be a pretty important lawyer back in the day."
"I know him," Pearl said.
"You do?" Apollo asked. "I've never seen you at the office."
"Office? You mean...law office? Do you mean Mr. Nick is still a lawyer?"
"Of course not," Apollo said. "Why would you say that?"
"You said...never mind," Pearl sighed. So much for her hopes of Mr. Nick still being a lawyer.
"How do you know Mr. Wright?"
"My cousin was his girlfriend," Pearl said. "Before he was...well...after he got disbarred, he never spoke to us again."
Apollo had a hard time picturing Mr. Wright with a girlfriend, but he was too excited to worry about that. "So you knew him before? Can you tell me what happened seven years ago? Why did he get disbarred?"
"I don't know," Pearl said. "That's why I want to look up the case."
"Oh," Apollo said.
"How do you know Phoenix Wright?" Pearl asked.
"He's my boss," Apollo said. "I work for him at the Wright & Co. Talent Agency."
"A talent agency?" Pearl asked.
"It's not much of a talent agency," Apollo said. "Mainly, Mr. Wright is the only customer. He finds people who will pay him to play piano."
"I didn't know he could play piano..."
"He can't," Apollo said. "Trust me. I've heard him play."
Pearl giggled. "It's a good thing we met each other," she said. "I'm sure we can help each other out."
Pearl and Apollo spent most of that day talking. At first, it was about Phoenix, but eventually, they started talking about other things, like legal work and movies.
Since they didn't find the transcript they were looking for, they set up a date. A research date, that is. They came back to the archives and looked through a few more transcripts, but once again, they got distracted by each other's company and had to set up another date.
This one was not a research date. They had dinner together.
Pearl had to do the research on her own after that, because she couldn't do research when Apollo was around. He was too distracting.
Three days later, Apollo got an unexpected call from Pearl on his cell phone.
"I found it!" Pearl said. "The transcript from the case!"
"What's it say?" Apollo asked. "What's it say?"
"I haven't read it yet, of course," Pearl said. "I'm waiting for you to get here."
"I'll be there as fast as I can!" Apollo said, hanging up his phone. "Sorry, Mr. Wright, but I've gotta go!"
"What's so important?" Phoenix asked.
"I can't explain now. Bye!" Apollo said, getting his things and running out the door.
"I wonder what's going on with Apollo..." Phoenix wondered.
"Didn't you hear the other voice on the phone?" Trucy asked. "I think Polly's got a girlfriend..."
Phoenix laughed. "Is that it? Good for him!"
"Did you ever have a girlfriend, Daddy?"
"Well...there was this one girl named Iris...but that was twelve years ago."
"Can I meet her?"
"You never let me meet any of your old friends," Trucy pouted.
Phoenix sighed. "I'm afraid that's because they're not my friends anymore."
"About time you showed up! Do you know how hard it is for me to wait to read the most important thing I'll ever read?" Pearl admonished Apollo.
"Do you know how far the UCLA Law Archives are from Mr. Wright's offices?"
"Let me think...not that far?"
"We're wasting time talking. Gimme that transcript."
The two of them read the transcript quickly, only stopping to make brief comments like "I remember Detective Gumshoe!" and "I bet Trucy would know who these magicians are". Finally, on the last page, they found what they were looking for. The transcript went like this:
Defense presents the missing half of the journal page, and a recess is requested by Prosecutor Gavin.
Judge accepts. The Judge, Prosecution and Defense stay behind to speak privately.
Recess ended. Instead of resuming court, the Judge delivers a Guilty verdict for Zac Gramayre. The Judge also says that Phoenix Wright has been disbarred for using falsified evidence.
"That tells us..."
"Absolutely nothing!" Pearl said. "They left out the most important part! What a waste of time!"
"So the only people who really know what happened are the Judge, Prosecutor Gavin, and Mr. Wright," Apollo summarized.
"Knowing the Judge, he probably forgot what happened," Pearl said. "Would Prosecutor Gavin tell you?"
"Probably not," Apollo said. "He'd tell me to ask Mr. Wright himself."
"So we're stuck."
"Unless we can find some way to trick Mr. Wright into telling us, yeah."
Pearl looked sad. "There's no telling how he'd react to seeing me after seven years. I don't think me going to see him would be a good idea."
"Which stinks, because having you guilt the story out of him is probably our best chance now."
"Guilt..." Pearl said thoughtfully. "You know, maybe I can't make him feel guilty, but I think I know someone who can."
"Have you ever heard of the Kurain Summoning Technique?"
Phoenix leaned back in his chair. The office was silent. Apollo had graciously offered to take Trucy out for dinner and a movie that night to make up for his running out earlier.
So Phoenix had the office all to himself that night, something that didn't happen often.
"Come in," he called.
In stepped a tall brunette with a black suitcoat.
Phoenix almost fainted on the stop. No. It couldn't be...
"Hello, Phoenix," Mia Fey said. "It's been a long time."
"This is what you've done to the office I left you?" Mia asked. "You turned it into a...what is this?"
"It's...the Wright Talent Agency."
"I see. So you decided to leave all your friends to live the life of a talent agent, is that it?"
This can't be happening, Phoenix thought. My past has finally come back to haunt me...literally.
"Why are you here? How are you here?" Phoenix asked.
"What do you think?" Mia asked.
"This is a trick. Maya finally tracked me down," Phoenix guessed. "She summoned you so she could get revenge on me."
Even as he said it, he knew he was wrong. If Maya was summoning Mia, her hair would be black. But her hair was brown...just like it was when Mia was still alive...
"Wrong," Mia said. "No one's summoning me. You can't summon someone if you're not wearing summoning robes." It was a lie, of course—Mia had once been summoned by Maya while she was in a waitress uniform—but Phoenix was too shocked to remember that.
"You're...you're real?" he gasped.
Mia nodded solemnly. "They sent me here to warn you. Something really bad is going to happen soon. Unless..."
"Unless you make things right."
"You abandoned all of your friends seven years ago," Mia said. "You left them without even saying goodbye or letting them know what happened. And you're still keeping secrets. You haven't told Apollo the whole truth, have you?"
"I...I...how do you know that?"
"I told you. I was sent to warn you. If you don't make things right with your friends..."
Phoenix held his head in his hands and sobbed. "I can't...it's been so long..."
"You can and you will," Mia said sternly. "You have to."
Phoenix continued sobbing.
"Don't cry, Phoenix. I'll help you."
"You will?" Phoenix asked, looking up. "How?"
"I'll help you get started."
Mia sat down in a chair opposite Phoenix.
"You can start by telling me what happened seven years ago. Once you tell one person, telling someone else will be a lot easier."
And so Phoenix told Mia what happened. For the first time in seven years, he gave a voice to all the emotions bottled up inside of him. All the events that he kept a secret...he held nothing back.
The conversation ended with Mia holding Phoenix while he cried.
"...And I can't tell Maya or anyone about this," he said. "It's been too long. They've probably all forgotten about me by now."
"Phoenix..." Mia said. "Have you gotten over it yet?"
"Then why on Earth would you think Maya could get over it? You broke her heart seven years ago. It's time to fix it."
"You're right," Phoenix said. "I have to tell her. It's not too late to make things right."
"It's never too late," Mia said.
"Thank you, Mia. I don't know how you came here...but thanks."
"I've...I've got to get ready!" Phoenix said, ripping off his hat. "I need to fix my hair; I need to find my blue suit..."
Mia smiled. "Welcome back, Phoenix."
"Hello, Mr. Wright," Apollo said.
"He can't hear you on my phone," Apollo told Trucy.
"I can still say hi!" she insisted.
"Sorry to bother you, but it's important," Phoenix said. "I need you to take care of Trucy tonight. I have somewhere I have to be."
"Why the sudden change of plans?"
"I'll tell you later," Phoenix promised. "In fact, cancel all your plans for tomorrow. You, Trucy and I need to have a long talk. I need to tell you the truth about everything."
"Everything," Phoenix affirmed. "What happened seven years ago. Why I was disbarred. Who your parents are."
"My parents? You knew my parents?"
"I'll tell you everything tomorrow, I promise," Phoenix said. "Just hold tight until then. There's someone else I need to tell first."
Phoenix barely managed to catch the last train to Kurain. By the time he got to Fey Manor, it was 9:00 and the doors were locked.
"I really should have called first," Phoenix grumbled. "Oh well. Here goes nothing."
He banged on the door. "Maya! Maaaaaya!" he called.
The door was opened by an annoyed acolyte. "Stop yelling! Do you know what time it is, Sir? What is it?"
"I..." Phoenix rubbed the back of his neck, feeling foolish. "I came to see Maya."
"Mystic Maya does not take visitors at this time of night. Please come by tomorrow."
"Please!" Phoenix begged. "I have to see her! It's a matter of life and death!"
The acolyte rolled her eyes. "Fine. Follow me."
She led the way to Maya's room.
"Wait out here, please," the acolyte instructed Phoenix.
The acolyte went inside and bowed. "Mystic Maya, there's a strange man out here who wants to speak to you."
"I'm watching my Steel Samurai movie," Maya said. "Can't it wait?"
"He seems rather insistent," the acolyte said.
"Fine, let him in."
The acolyte bowed again, then went back outside. "You may enter," she said.
Phoenix went in the room, not sure what to expect. Inside, looking somewhat confused, was Maya.
Phoenix gawked at Maya. She was exactly how he remembered her. She looked like she hadn't aged a day!
"Oh my God!" Maya said. "Nick, is that...?"
"It's me," Phoenix said. "I'm back."
Maya immediately burst into tears and hugged him. "Nick! What happened? Why did you—?"
"I'm the biggest idiot in the world," Phoenix said. He was crying too. "I shouldn't have left."
"Why did you go? I needed you."
"I need you. I just didn't know how much until just now..."
The two of them held each other and cried for a long time before they could talk about what happened.
By the time Maya got over the shock of seeing Phoenix again, she remembered that she had every right to be angry with him.
"You will never, ever do that again!" Maya ordered. "You will never leave me without telling me why again!"
"Again? Does that mean...you want me back in your life? Even after everything I did?"
"Of course it does! You can't get rid of me that easily!"
"You forgive me?"
"Oh, don't worry. You've still got a lot of payback to go through...but yes, I forgive you."
Phoenix enveloped Maya in a large bear hug. "I love you, Maya," he said.
Maya blushed. "Don't let Pearl hear you say that," she mumbled.
"Pearl...is she...does she hate me now?"
"Are you kidding? Wait until Pearl hears you're back! This is going to make her day!"
"Let's see her!" Phoenix said. "What does she look like?"
"She's all grown up now!" Maya said. "She's not living here anymore, though. She wanted to go to UCLA and become a lawyer, just like you! Can you believe it?"
"No," Phoenix admitted.
"She's even got a boyfriend now!"
"No way!" Phoenix said. He couldn't imagine cute little Pearl grown up and with a boyfriend.
"Well, not a boyfriend, but she says she just went out with a guy named Apollo Just—"
"Apollo Justice?!" Phoenix screamed.
"You know him?"
"He...he...he works for me!"
"Wait a minute...brown hair...Pearl! Pearl was Mia! She was summoning Mia!"
"Are you okay, Nick? What's wrong?"
"This is all just another one of Pearl's plots to get us to start dating, that's what's wrong!" Phoenix said. "It's...it's..."
"It's just like seven years ago," Phoenix realized. "Seeing you, Maya...it's like nothing ever happened. Like no time has passed at all. I can't believe it."
Maya nodded. "I thought seeing you again would be the worst moment of my life, but instead, it feels amazing. Like...someone put my life on pause for the past seven years, and you finally pressed the play button."
"I know," Phoenix agreed. "I feel like I'm back to the way I was. The way I'm supposed to be."
"Well, not quite," Maya said.
She ripped the Magatama from her necklace and handed it to Phoenix.
"Here. You need another one of these."
Phoenix smiled at Maya.
"Now, enough talk! Let's heat up some burgers! I'm starving!"
"God, I missed you."
Maya came with Phoenix back to LA the next day. "I can't let you out of my sight for a moment," she told him.
Pearl was, of course, invited to the big talk where Phoenix explained everything that had happened over the past seven years. He was very happy that Pearl and Apollo were good friends.
"So, are you two...special someones?" Maya asked.
"Maya! We're not—!"
"That's a yes! That's a yes!" Maya said.
"No, it's not! I mean, not unless...I mean, no!"
"She is the best little girl in the world, Apollo," Phoenix said. "If you ever abandon her someday to become a piano bum..."
"I don't think there's any chance of me doing that," Apollo said. "I can't even play the piano."
"That never stopped me!" Phoenix said.
As excited as Phoenix and Maya were, the most excited person that day was Trucy. "I don't believe it!" she said. "Does this mean I get two new family members?"
"Yes," Phoenix said. "And as soon as Apollo can prove my innocence, I'll get my badge back, and I can be a lawyer again! The Wright & Co. Law Offices will reopen!"
"Um...not to put any pressure on me or anything, right?" Apollo asked.
"Don't worry!" Pearl said. "With you and me on the case, Nick's as good as saved. We'll make an unbeatable legal team!"
"Hey! I'm his legal assistant!" Trucy protested.
"Yeah, but she's his special someone," Maya said.
"Maya!" Pearl said.