Zack tucked in his shirt and looked in the mirror.
"You look fine," Cassie said as she came up behind him.
"I don't know why I'm so nervous."
"Why wouldn't you be? We're going to the sentencing of the man who practically took your childhood away."
Zack sighed, "I've been waiting for this day for the past twelve years. I never thought it would come."
Cassie smiled, "It's gonna be a good day," She said as she wrapped her arms around him.
"Yes it is," He replied as he returned the hug.
Cody was trying to fix his tie when someone knocked on the door.
He looked through the peephole then opened the door.
"You ready?" Anna asked as she walked inside.
Cody walked back to his bedroom and looked in his mirror. He, once again, tried to straighten his tie, "Ugh!" He said, clearly aggravated.
"What's wrong?" Anna asked from the living room.
"This stupid tie! I think something's wrong with it."
Anna rolled her eyes and walked back to Cody's room, "Here, let me."
"What did you do?" She said as she undid the knot in his tie.
"It's not me, it's the tie."
Anna put the tie around Cody's neck and in less than a minute it was perfect. "Yeah, that tie had major problems," She said to him sarcastically.
"Ha.. ha.. ha."
"You know, it's okay to be nervous. That's normal," Anna said as they walked out of Cody's room.
"And why would you think I was nervous?"
"Because I've been working with you for a year and every day, for a year, you have worn a tie to work. So, unless you have some fairy that comes down and ties your tie for you, you've never had a problem with it before."
Cody glared at Anna, "Okay, so I'm nervous. I'm very nervous. I think I'm gonna vomit. I haven't slept since they arrested him. Well, I actually haven't slept in years but..."
"Cody, the worst part is over. All you have to do is sit in the courtroom and hear the sentencing. This should be the best day of your life."
"There is no doubt that I am very happy, but I just keep thinking of all the boys who didn't survive. Whatever the sentence is, I want it to be fitting for those victims as well."
"I'm sure it will be. There is no way the judge is going to go easy on this guy."
Cody nodded, "You're right."
"I know!" Anna said with a laugh, "Come on. Let's go."
Once again everyone met outside of the courthouse.
Lauren looked at her watch, "You've got about twenty minutes before you need to be inside. If you all wanted to walk around, just make sure you are in room 121 before eleven. I'm gonna go inside and get everything ready."
Lauren left the group and went inside.
No one spoke.
"So," Cassie said, finally breaking the silence, "Carrie, Anna, did you two want to go get something to drink? We can let the boys, I mean men, talk."
"Yeah, that sounds great," Anna replied with a smile.
"Let's go," Carey said.
The girls walked off leaving Jimmy, Toby, Zack, and Cody.
"What do you thinks gonna happen today?" Toby asked.
"I was hoping for public torture to the death," Cody began, "But then I realized three things: One: We're in America. Two: This is the twenty-first century. And three: Massachusetts doesn't have the death penalty."
Zack shrugged, "It still sounds pretty good to me."
"Me too," Jimmy added.
Twenty minutes passed and everyone met in room 121. Jimmy, Toby, Anna, Cody, Zack, Cassie, and Carey took up the front row inside the courtroom. Parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and grandparents of the less fortunate victims sat, and stood, behind them. Some wore t-shirts with their child's name and picture on them.
The second James entered the courtroom people began yelling and screaming at him, cursing his name. Cody, however, didn't notice the noise. Everything around him disappeared and all he saw was the man who stole twelve years of his life. James listened to all the screams but he didn't say anything back. He simply looked at the people and smiled, causing them to scream even louder.
"Order! Order!" The judge yelled as she sat in her chair and banged her gavel. "If I hear another sound out of any of your mouths then you will be forcibly removed from the room."
Everyone quieted down.
"That's better," The judge said. "Today we are here on behalf of Kaleb Zemp, who has been charged with thirty five counts of murder in the first degree, thirty seven counts of kidnapping, and thirty seven counts of rape. I must be honest when I say that I didn't think long and hard about my decision. This was a very easy decision to make..."
James wasn't paying any attention to what the judge was saying. All he could think about was all the boys he had taken over the years. He remembered all of there names, 'First it was Chris, then Jacob, Marshal, Greg, Freddie, Josh, Tim, Jerry...' He was going through each boy. As he listed the names in his head, he also remembered how he had raped all of them. Except to him it wasn't rape. It was his joy. It was how he got high. Anytime, day or night, he could close his eyes and remember any of those boys. That turned him on. It made him happy. He knew that no matter what happened to him, no matter how long he was behind bars, no one could take those memories from him. As long as he could close his eyes he would be fine.
"Will the defendant please rise," The judge said. The defense attorney had to nudge Kaleb, snapping him out of his trance.
Everything seemed to be going in slow motion, 'This is it. The moment I've been waiting for, for the past twelve years,' Cody thought.
Zack put his arm around Cassie, and she put her hand on his leg. 'I can't believe this is finally happening after so long,' Zack thought.
Everyone in the room held their breath as the judge spoke.
"I sentence you, Kaleb Zemp, to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole," The judge banged her gavel and added, "Court is adjourned."
Cries and tears of joy were seen and heard throughout the room. Zack pulled Cassie into a hug as tears streamed down his face.
Cody remained sitting, he was in shock. He knew that there was no way James was going to get a light sentence but to actually hear his punishment, it was breath taking. He felt as if he had won the lottery. He put his head into his hands and began to cry. A few seconds later he felt an arm around his back. He looked up to see who it was.
"I hope that's a happy cry," Anna said with a smile.
Cody shook his head, "I just can't believe it finally happened! After all this time, I just..." He couldn't finish his sentence. He was to overwhelmed with emotion. He simply pulled Anna into a hug.
After things calmed down, people began to leave.
"Tonight we're going out to celebrate at the most expensive restaurant I can find," Jimmy said in excitement as they walked outside of the courtroom, "It's my treat! I'll call you all later and let you know where we are going. I'd love to stay but I gotta get back to work." He walked over to Zack and Cody, "Congratulations you two. This was long overdue."
"Thank you," They replied with a smile.
"We gotta go too," Toby said as he pointed to Anna. "But before we do I just wanted to tell you two something. I have a friend that works at the prison James will be at, and he told me who his cell mate would be. It's a man named Harold Taylor. Fifteen years ago Harold killed three men who he thought were molesting young children. If there is one type of person this man hates, it's child molesters. I have a feeling James will be sleeping with his eyes open, if he even sleeps at all."
After they congratulated the boys Toby and Anna left.
Lauren came out of the courtroom, "Well, I'd call that a win," She said with a smile.
"Thank you for everything," Zack said.
"Ah, it was an easy one. But, I couldn't have done it without you two, so thank you." She looked at her watch, "I've gotta go, but I'll see you later."
Carey gave Zack and Cody a hug, "I would have to say this is one of the best days we've had in a long time."
"And we'd have to agree," Cody replied.
"I think I'm gonna go home. See you soon," She gave them another hug then walked off.
"So, what are you going to do until celebration time?" Zack asked Cody.
Cody smiled, "I'm gonna go to bed."
He gave Zack and Cassie a hug.
"See you tonight," He added as he walked off with the smile still on his face.
"Go to bed?" Cassie asked confused, "Why would he go to bed at noon?"
Zack put his arm around Cassie, "He's got alot of catching up to do." He gave Cassie a kiss on the cheek, "Come on. Let's go home."
THE END! I hope you enjoyed the last chapter and the story as a whole. I was going to have James sentenced with the death penalty but then I looked it up and it turns out they don't have it in Massachusetts so I changed it:) haha... One day I may come back and add another sequel to this sequel! I love writing Zack and Cody as adults and I have more story ideas that could work with this one. But for right now, I have other ideas that I'm going to pursue. I'm not sure when I will begin posting my next story. Maybe in about a week. I want to write a few chapters of it before I started adding it. Right now the working title is Falling Slowly. However I don't know if there is already a Suite Life story with that name so I will have to wait and see. If there is then I will think of something else:) Here are some more people I would like to thank: Lorie-TSL, Raimundoroks, purplewowies, Dawnfire17, and Shaman Hime. Again, thank you all for the reviews! I never thought I would get as many as I did:) You guys are amazing! God bless! See you soon ;)