In Justice We Trust
Location: Southern California
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 6:31 pm
February 25, 2017
At last, things were beginning to come together. The secret that had torn Lana from Miles’s arms had been exposed. In addition, Chief Gant himself had contacted Miles and requested that SL-9 be ignored and the only case under scrutiny be Goodman’s death. With that call, Gant had made it clear that he also had some secrets.
Miles walked into the Defendant Lobby and saw Wright there. Lana was gone.Gant must be talking to her. He’s got something to hide, and this case has given him reason to get paranoid.
“Something’s been happening behind the scenes…” Miles sighed. Wright turned and saw Miles.
“Edgeworth!” Wright yelped.
“Knowing you, you’ve already figured it out… Who the owner of the ‘7777777’ ID number is.”
“Well… I have a pretty strong hunch.”Gant, I presume. I figured as much. This is a problem, though.
“You know,” Miles grumbled, “the only reason this trial didn’t reach a verdict yesterday is because there was still room for doubt on this ID record. If that number does belong to whom you suspect, then no doubt will remain.” Unless you have some idea how to throw suspicion onto him
. “After all, he hasn’t been officially charged with anything.”
“True…” Wright admitted. “Not yet.”
“In any event, once all doubt has been removed from that list, I can call for a ruling on the defendant. Five minutes after the trial starts…” I can hardly bear to say it…
“Lana will be found guilty.”
“But she didn’t do it!”
“I figured you’d say as much. That’s why I came here… to hear what you have to say.”
Wright looked surprised.This isn’t just about Lana anymore, Wright. Someone’s out to get me, and I intend to strike them down.
“Lana’s hiding something,” Wright said, “and the only we’ll ever know the truth is to draw it out of her.”
“The ‘truth’?” She’s already admitted to forging evidence. What more could she be hiding?
“Everything goes back to the SL-9 Incident,” Wright said.
“Don’t be stupid!” Miles snapped. “Today’s the last day of the trial. We don’t have time to reminisce about the past!”
“That depends on you.”What do you mean by that, Wright?
“If she’s found guilty,” Wright continued, “you’ll lose your only chance to find out what really happened.”Amazing… Did you somehow learn I dated that beautiful client of yours?
“I’ll think about it,” Miles said. “See you in court, Wright.”
Miles walked out of the lobby.What really happened… Forging that evidence… Why did she do it? Thinking about it, it’s not in her to do something so horrible without what she considers a very good reason. Just catching Darke… Yes… There is more to that disaster…
Miles walked into the courtroom. Moments later, Wright joined him on the other side. The judge banged his gavel.
“Court is now in session for the trial of Ms. Lana Skye,” he said.
“The defense is ready, Your Honor,” Wright said.
“The prosecution is ready, Your Honor,” Miles stated.
“Normally this is when the prosecution puts forth its opening statement,” the judge said, “but before that, the police chief has a proposal to make.”A proposal? Hm… This definitely makes Wright seem right.
Gant took the stand. “Mornin’ folks,” he said, clapping his hands jollily. “How’s everyone doing? Hey, Udgey. Been back to the pool yet?”
“No, I’ve been drowning enough as it is in my work,” the judge replied.
“Ho! That’s a good one! Don’t think I can top that!”
“If you don’t mind me asking, Chief,” Miles cut in, “exactly what is this ‘proposal’ of yours?”
Gant waited a moment until the court was completely focused on him. “Lana… that is to say, the defendant, has asked me if she could speak directly to the court.”What about?
“Having heard what she intends to say,” Gant continued, “I feel she should be granted her request. In the end, it should save everyone a lot of time and trouble.”
Gant stepped down from the stand and Lana took his place.
“What’s this all about, defendant?” Miles asked.
“I’d just like to make one simple request, and I’ll be finished,” Lana said.
“Well then?” the judge asked. “What’s your request?”
“Your Honor, I’d like you to put an immediate end to this trial.”
“Huh!?” Wright gasped.
“I confess to all charges against me. On February 21 of this year, I murdered Detective Bruce Goodman in the underground parking lot of the Prosecutor’s Office.”
“No, Lana!” Wright screamed.
The gallery started up. The judge banged his gavel.
“Objection!” Wright yelled. “You can’t! Your Honor. The defendant’s claim does not change the defense’s plea!”
“In that case, Mr. Wright,” Lana said, “I no longer require your services.”
“Your Honor. I hereby forfeit my right to an attorney.”What!? Lana, this is madness!
“The prosecution may lack direct evidence against me,” Lana continued, “but it has sufficiently proven its case through testimony and circumstantial evidence. I would like you to render your verdict now, if you please.”
“Hmm…” the judge mumbled. “Well, the defendant certainly has the right to self-representation… Her request is legally valid, although this is an unprecedented situation.”
The judge banged his gavel.So it’s over? Just like that? Are you really this desperate, Lana?
“Indeed,” the judge continued, “it appears there’s no further need to continue this trial… even if Mr. Wright may feel otherwise.”What to do… If she really wants this verdict…
“It appears the time for the verdict has arrived.”No… I must know the truth!
“This court finds the defendant…”
“One moment, Your Honor,” Miles requested.
“M-Mr. Edgeworth!?” the judge stammered.
“The prosecution has not yet proven the defendant guilty beyond reasonable doubt.” Miles struck his desk. “Any ruling at this stage would certainly be premature.”
“Come now, Worthy,” Gant said. “I understand this is a difficult time for you, but why don’t you just be a good little boy and keep your mouth shut, hmm?”I should have known, Gant. You’ve got your own dirty secret behind this case, don’t you? Well, that changes a great deal.
Miles smiled evilly.
“Hmph,” Miles scoffed. “I don’t think I care for your tone… Chief Gant.”
“Creating another fabrication to cover up your past mistakes… Sorry, but I’m no longer the naïve little ‘boy’ you would have me be.” After two years, I’ve finally found out who it is that’s responsible for all the rumors flying around about me, all the oddities that I decided against questioning… and the end of my engagement to Lana… Thanks to Wright, I finally have in my sights the monster I’ve been searching for. I’ve thrown my glove before your feet, Damon Gant. Choose your weapon; the place is here and the time is now.
“With this sudden confession from the defendant,” Miles continued, “it’s obvious to me some kind of deal was struck behind the scenes.”
“Some kind of ‘deal,’ hm?” Gant teased. “Not everyone operates as you do… Worthy.”
“Hmph. I thought so. Your Honor. The prosecution would like to change its first witness.”
“Oh?” the judge asked. “To whom…?”To someone who can shed light on SL-9… Someone who saw the crime scene before the forgery…
“As its first witness, the prosecution would like to call… Ms. Ema Skye! I request the court hears her testimony!”
“Hold it!” Lana screamed. “Mr. Edgeworth! I am exercising my right to self representation. I don’t think we need to contin—”
“I don’t care what you think, Ms. Skye.”
Lana glared at Miles.I don’t know what to think of you anymore, Lana. But I know what I want, and that’s the truth. Gant has you under his control. But he doesn’t control me. I don’t care who I have to strike down to defeat him—even if I have to strike you down to get there.
“The exposure of truth sometimes results in tragedy…” Miles said. “However! No matter how tragic the truth may be, it would be an even greater tragedy… to avert one’s eyes from it.”Even if you despise me for this, I’m going forward. If we are destined to be apart, then I have a right to know why.
The judge banged his gavel.
“Very well,” he said. “The court shall grant the prosecution’s request. That’s okay with you, right Chief Gant?”
“Worthy…” Gant said. His smile suddenly became serious. “You’ll live to regret this. Mark my words.”I imagine I will… But I’d regret letting you go free even more.
“Ms. Ema Skye,” Miles said. “Please take the stand.”
Ema walked to the witness stand, clearly saddened by Lana’s statement.
“Now then, witness,” Miles continued. “Please state your name and occupation.”
“Um…” Ema stuttered. “M-my name is Ema. Ema Skye. My occupation? I’m Lana’s little sister, and I want to be a scientific investigator!”
“Two years ago… you encountered the serial killer Joe Darke, of the ‘Joe Darke Killings.’ Is this correct?”
“Yes. I’m trying my hardest to forget about that, though…”
“I’m sorry, but I’m afraid I’m going to have to ask you to recall those events one more time.”
“Mr. Edgeworth,” the judge called. “Please remember this trial concerns the murder of Detective Goodman. Is an incident that was resolved two years ago really all that relevant?”
“Yes. It most certainly is.” It’s become clear to me that the secret of SL-9 has a critical role in this case.
“W-well okay then!” the judge said.
“Now… please testify about what happened to you two years ago.”At last, I’ll know what Gant has been using to threaten you. Even if we may not be together, Lana, you may still have your sister.
“I was waiting in my sister’s office that day,” Ema squeaked. “A man came running in, and took me hostage. Neil Marshall rescued me, but I’ll never forget what I saw that instant! The man raised his knife, and… and stabbed Mr. Marshall in the chest…!”
“It’s a good thing you weren’t harmed,” the judge said.
“I passed out… I don’t remember much.”
“That’s understandable. However… please tell me, Mr. Edgeworth. What does this testimony have to do with Detective Goodman’s murder?”I know there’s a connection, but how to phrase it…
“That will soon become apparent, Your Honor,” Miles said, confident. Wright, on the other hand, was already in his usual cold sweat.
“Very well! The defense may begin its cross-examination.”
“What was the prosecutor doing there?” Wright asked, referring to Marshall.
“That day,” Miles answered, “there were two people present during Darke’s questioning: Detective Damon Gant, and Prosecutor Neil Marshall. Neil Marshall had just received the King of Prosecutors award. Young and dedicated, he went straight to the questioning room after the ceremony.”
“I assume that would also be why he was the first to run after Darke,” the judge said.
“When Darke grabbed me,” Ema sobbed, “I… I thought I was as good as dead.”
“And that’s when Prosecutor Marshall came running in?”
“I… I don’t clearly remember what happened then. But… but I’ll never forget what I saw that instant!”
“Can you tell us about that?”
“Mr. Marshall jumped on Darke. Just then… the lights went out.”
“The lights?” the judge asked.
“It was just about this time of year… There was a terrible storm going on, and lightning struck nearby.”Right, I remember that. Thanks to that brief blackout, I lost a report I was in the middle of typing.
“So the electricity went out?” Wright asked.
“Wait a minute…” the judge said. “If it was pitch dark in that room… you shouldn’t have been able to see anything, right?”
“Right, but just then lightning flashed again outside,” Ema replied. “That sudden flash left an unforgettable image of the scene in my mind…”
“I told the detective about what I saw then.”
“The detective?” Wright asked.
“Yes. Detective Goodman. He was in charge of the case.”
“So you spoke with Detective Goodman about this… two years ago.”
“Yes. That’s what’s so scary about this trial.”
“And you told Detective Goodman what you saw?” Miles asked.
“Yes, but… at the time, the words just wouldn’t come out. That’s why I drew a picture.”A picture?
“Well, Mr. Wright?” the judge asked. “Have you heard enough?”
“This picture the witness drew…” Wright said. “I believe it has a very important meaning.”
“Objection!” Miles shouted. “But the list of evidence I was given two years ago didn’t contain a picture…”
The judge banged his gavel. “Witness,” he said. “Would you mind if we added this statement to your testimony?”
“Y-yes, Your Honor,” Ema said. “I drew a picture of that scene once… but it seems to have been lost.”
“Objection!” Wright shouted. “Mr. Edgeworth. This little girl put all her heart into drawing that picture…” He struck his desk, then pointed accusingly at Miles. “and yet you still insist on denying its existence?”
“Huh!?” Miles yelped. He hit his desk. “Hey, I’m not the bad guy! All I’m saying is that as the prosecutor for that case, I wasn’t handed such a picture!”
“That may well be… but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.” Wright held up a piece of paper. “Behold!” The paper was handed to the judge.
“This is… the evidence list for the SL-9 Incident?” he asked.
“Please turn it over, Your Honor,” Wright said with a nod.
“Turn it over…? Turn… it… AAAAAAAHHHH! What’s this!?”What’s what!? What in the world is going on!?
The judge held up the evidence list. On its back was a picture of some sort.What the hell…?
“Yes, what is that?” Miles demanded.
“Hey!” Ema chirped. “That’s it! That’s the picture I drew!”
The gallery started murmuring, but quieted down before the judge had to use his gavel.
“Indeed…” the judge said. “Two men appear to be wrestling here.”
“Objection!” Miles barked. “What’s the meaning of this!? What are you doing with that list!?”
“Me…?” Wright squeaked, sweating.
“Only the prosecutor in charge should have access to that list!” Miles yelled, holding up his copy.
“Huh…?” the judge mumbled. “These lists… They’re… They’re different from each other.”
“It would appear, Mr. Edgeworth, that the evidence list you were handed two years ago… was incomplete. These two lists… fit together to form one. You can see the marks here, where they were torn apart from each other.”Torn apart!?
“So you see, Mr. Edgeworth,” Wright said. “It’s quite obvious what happened. Two years ago… only half of the evidence in that case ever reached you.”
“What…” Miles said through gritted teeth. “WWWHHAAAAAAATTTTT!?”
The gallery began yammering. The judge banged his gavel to silence them.
“Order! Order!” the judge roared. “Who’d have thought the picture would have been drawn on the back of the list…”
“That was handed to Detective Goodman in the questioning room?” Ema finished.Is everyone in the Department out to get me!?
Wright pounded on his desk. “Your Honor!” he called.
“Are you all right, Mr. Wright?” the judge asked. “Your eyes are bulging from your head…”
“If the evidence list was torn in half… then there might be more of the drawing on the back of Mr. Edgeworth’s list!”He’s right!
“Yes, that’s quite conceivable,” the judge agreed. “Mr. Edgeworth?”
“It’s possible,” Miles said, looking at his half of the list. “Let’s see…” He turned it over. On the other side, however, was not part of Ema’s picture, but the rotten head of the Blue Badger. Miles doubled over onto his desk, his teeth grinding against each other. “MM!” he growled. “MMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!” Why the hell did THAT thing have to show up again!?
“Is something wrong?”Why couldn’t Wynn have designed something more authoritative!?
“Sorry, Your Honor,” Miles said, regaining his composure. “There is something drawn on the back of my list. This is that… thing!” Miles indicated the jester of a mascot drawn on his half of the evidence list.
The judge appeared shocked. “That’s that… that thing! That thing that was dancing in the evidence room!”I’d hardly call it a dance.
“Apparently the Head of Criminal Affairs used this for his blueprint.” Before I resign, I’ll have to make sure someone looks over his salary…
The judge banged his gavel. “Very well,” he said. “Witness. Will you please testify about this picture you drew two years ago?”
“Huh?” Ema asked after a pause. She must not have been listening. “Oh, y-yes sir, Your Honor! This is the picture I drew two years ago. The flash of lightning was so bright all I could see were shadows. After that I must have fainted. This picture shows exactly what I saw that instant!”
“To think a flash of lightning could burn such an image in your mind… Well, I don’t see any contradictions here. This clearly shows Joe Darke about to murder Prosecutor Neil Marshall.”You can’t really tell that. After all, Ema only drew a pair of silhouettes.
“The defense may now begin its cross-examination,” the judge said.
“Did you draw this picture right after the incident?” Wright asked.
“Um… I think I drew it two or three days later,” Ema replied. “At first I was in such a state of shock that I couldn’t do anything…”
“During that time the detective team was reorganized,” Miles said. “Detective Goodman was placed in charge under the direction of Damon Gant and Lana Skye.”
“Excuse me, witness,” the judge cut in, “but can you please tell us why this picture is painted all black?”
“The flash of lightning was so bright all I could see were shadows,” Ema explained.
“So at the time you didn’t even know it was Mr. Marshall who had come to your rescue?” Wright asked.
“No… I couldn’t see him clearly. The lightning was so bright… and I was knocked to the floor.”
“You were knocked to the floor?”
“Darke had a tight grip on me, but when Mr. Marshall jumped on him, I was knocked away. I turned around, and that’s when the lightning flashed.”
“What happened after the lightning flashed?” Miles asked.
“After that I must have fainted,” Ema answered.
“You mean, you didn’t see the actual murder take place?” Wright asked.
“No. I-I’m sorry…”
“Objection!” Miles yelled. “The flash of lightning only drove off the darkness for a split second. Not only that, but the trauma of the situation understandably caused the witness to faint.” Miles hit his desk. “Do you really need to torture this girl any further!?”
“What!?” Wright yelped. “Hey, I’m not the bad guy here!”
“Anyway,” Ema said, “this picture… this picture shows exactly what I saw that instant!”
“Objection!” Wright hit his desk. “I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but this picture the witness drew… contains a blatant contradiction!” Wright was holding Marshall’s autopsy report in one hand.
“What?” Ema yelped. “B-but, I still remember it just like it was yesterday!”
The judge banged his gavel. “Mr. Wright,” he said. “Perhaps it would be faster if you simply pointed out this contradiction for us. What part of this picture… contradicts the autopsy report?”
“The contradiction of course lies here!” Wright said, indicating the knife shown in the picture. “Take a look at the knife the man is holding. If you look closely, you can see its tip is broken!”
“In fact, you don’t even have to look closely to see that.”
“But Mr. Wright, look at the evidence!” Ema said, flipping through her notebook. “See the murder weapon? Its tip is broken too!”
“If I recall… the tip of the knife was found broken off in the victim’s body.”
“It was the conclusive piece of evidence that proved Joe Darke was the murderer!”
Wright shook his head. “I’m afraid it’s not so simple, Ema,” he said.
“Objection!” Miles shouted, striking his desk. “Huh? Where could you possibly see a problem!?”
“It’s obvious, really. The victim ‘suffered a single stab wound to the back.’” He pounded on his desk. “If the victim was only stabbed once, then the murder weapon should not yet be broken!”
“AAAAAAAHHHHHH!” the judge screamed. “What’s the meaning of this?”
“Objection!” Miles yelled. “Perhaps the knife was broken beforehand!”
“Objection!” Wright shouted back. “Sorry, but I’m afraid that’s not possible. The tip of the knife was found inside the victim’s body.” He slammed his desk. “If it was broken beforehand, it couldn’t possibly wind up there!”
The judge banged his gavel. “That’s right!” he agreed. “But what does this mean?”
“Objection!” Miles barked. “The tip of the knife was undeniably discovered within the victim’s body! The only possible explanation is the witness’s memory is mistaken!”
“Objection!” Wright countered. “That’s why I asked her so many times if she was sure she remembered correctly. I believe you were annoyed at the time. But she was sure she remembered correctly!”
“But… there’s no other way to explain this inconsistency!”
“Objection! Not so fast, Mr. Edgeworth. There is another explanation. Have you forgotten already? About a little something called… ‘falsified evidence’?”
“You’re treading on thin ice, Wright…”
“All I’m saying, is that this broken knife might be the piece of evidence that was forged! You can’t deny the possibility!”
The gallery started up, silenced by the judge’s gavel.
“Order! Order! Order!” the judge bellowed. “Are you saying the investigation really was corrupted?”
“Your Honor…” Wright said. “Please allow me to once again go over the events that took place the day of the murder. The Police Department and the Prosecutor’s Office were holding a ceremony that day. After receiving the King of Prosecutors award at the ceremony, Neil Marshall questioned Joe Darke along with Damon Gant. During his questioning, Joe Darke fled the room. Prosecutor Marshall chased after him… and was killed by Darke. It is my belief that somewhere in this story… there is a lie.”
“I… I’m not lying…” Ema sobbed. “The man really was holding up a broken knife!”Where does that leave us, then?
“If that’s true…” Miles started, “then there’s no other way around it.” He pointed to Darke’s knife. “This could not have been the actual murder weapon. There must have been another broken knife!”
“What are the chances of there being two broken knives?” the judge asked.
“If the witness is this adamant about the accuracy of what she saw…” Wright said, “it can’t just be explained away by a simple observational error.”
“Mr. Wright…” Ema said.
Wright banged on his desk. “In that instant… Ema really did see a broken knife!”
The judge banged his gavel. “I assume then,” he said, “that you have some information about this ‘other’ broken knife? If so, please feel free to enlighten us.”
“Take a look at this. Here’s the real murder weapon!” He held up a picture of the photograph hanging on the wall in Lana’s old office. “The answer lies in the past… Two years in the past. Right here inside this picture!”
“This is a picture of the awards ceremony,” Miles said. He then noticed it: the broken knife on Marshall’s trophy. “A-AAAAHH!”
“What is it, Mr. Edgeworth!?” the judge asked.
“It’s the… the broken murder weapon!” She really did lie to me…
“Notice the award Prosecutor Marshall is holding,” Wright said.
“That’s… a broken knife!” Ema exclaimed.
Wright struck his desk. “As we earlier concluded, the knife in the picture was not Joe Darke’s knife. That being the case… the knife the witness saw, was in all likelihood this award!”
The gallery started up again. The judge did what he did best.
“Order! Order! Order!” he roared.
“Neil Marshall was awarded King of Prosecutors that day,” Wright continued. “As an award, he was given this broken shield and a broken knife. When he chased after Joe Darke, he pulled out this knife. Being a prosecutor, he did not carry a pistol. This broken knife was the only weapon he had in this dangerous situation.”
“Objection!” Miles yelled. “But that… That can’t be!”
“Oh? And why not, Mr. Edgeworth?”
“Because if the King of Prosecutors award knife was the murder weapon… then the murderer and the victim would be reversed!”
“What do you mean?”
Miles hit his desk. “I mean… This man raising a knife… would have been Prosecutor Neil Marshall!”
“Oh…” Wright mumbled. He then jerked back. “OOOOOOOHHHH!!!”
The gallery started talking until the judge banged his gavel.
“But the prosecutor was the one who actually died!” the judge said.
“That’s true…” Wright admitted.
Miles shook his head, amused. “It seems Mr. Wright has been a bit too eager to jump to conclusions…” he said.
“Hold it!” Ema screamed. “Wait! I… I remember now… I remember everything!”
“Witness…?” the judge asked.
“What is it?” Miles asked.
“Could you show me your evidence list again, please?”
“His list?” the judge confirmed. “The one with that… picture scribbled on the back?”
Miles held up the picture.
“I knew it…” Ema said. “This picture… I’m the one who drew it.”
“What!?” Miles demanded.
“You drew that?” Wright squeaked.
“That’s right,” Ema stated. “The list wasn’t torn in half at the time I drew this picture. All this time I’ve been trying so hard to forget… I must have locked this part away deep inside me…”
The judge banged his gavel. “Perhaps it would be best…” he said, “if we added this to the witness’s testimony. Would you please tell us what you’ve recalled, Ms. Skye?”
“Yes, Your Honor,” Ema answered. “When I saw that man raise his knife… I panicked, and rushed toward both of them. I think I… I knocked away the man with the knife. Just then there was another flash of lightning, and that’s when I saw… the Blue Badger! He wasn’t in the room, but I’m sure I saw his shadow!”
“This is certainly most unusual…” the judge commented.
“Objection!” Miles barked. “Try impossible! The Head Detective of Criminal Affairs didn’t even design him until this year!”
“Yes, well. The defense may now begin its cross-examination.”
“Hold it!” Lana screamed, having run up to the witness stand. “Stop!” she yelled, striking it with her right hand. “Please! Don’t pursue this any further!”
“Lana!” Wright cried.
“What’s the meaning of this!?” the judge growled. “Please remain seated in the defendant’s chair!”
“But you can’t do this! I’ve already confessed to the crime! Why can’t you just leave it at that!?”
“Chief Prosecutor Skye,” Miles called calmly. “We’ve already come this far. It’s too late to turn back.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Silence!” he shouted. “The defense will now begin its cross-examination. Bailiff. Please detain the defendant.”
The bailiff took Lana back to the defendant’s chair and stood next to her lest she try to interfere with the trial again.We’re getting close to the truth, Lana. I don’t care what you do. Even what remains of my love for you will not stop me from pursuing this to the end.
“When you say, ‘that man,’” Wright said, “I assume you refer to Joe Darke?”
“Yes…” Ema answered, “at least, I think it was him.”
“All I could really see were shadows.”
“The power outage that immediately preceded the incident,” Miles explained, “is also documented in the Prosecutor’s Office reports.”
“So then you…” the judge started.
“I panicked,” Ema finished, “and rushed toward both of them.”
“Why would you do something so dangerous!?” Wright asked.
“What else could I have done!? He was about to stab Mr. Marshall!”
“But as we’ve just theorized,” Miles stated, “Mr. Marshall was the one holding the knife.”
“Well, I didn’t know that at the time! When that Darke guy knocked me down, all I could think was, ‘I’ve got to help Mr. Marshall!’ I think I… I knocked away the man with the knife.”
“What do you mean, you ‘think’?” Wright asked.
“It… it all happened so fast… And I was in shock! I don’t remember everything clearly. What I did… it’s all kind of a blur…”
“In a matter of seconds Ms. Skye was almost killed,” Miles said, “then she witnessed a murder about to take place. A little disorientation is only natural.”
“I saw the man about to stab the other person, who I thought was Mr. Marshall. I knew I had to stop the man with the knife.”
“What you did was very brave, young girl,” the judge commented. “So then, what happened next?”
“Just then there was another flash of lightning, and that’s when I saw… the Blue Badger! He wasn’t in the room, but I’m sure I saw his shadow!”
“His shadow?” Wright asked. “So you mean, you didn’t actually see his face, with its winning smile and all?”And losing design?
“That’s right…” Ema said, “but I still remember it. He had three creepy horns…”
“Objection!” Miles yelled. “This is pointless! That thing couldn’t have possibly existed two years ago… The witness must be mistaken!”
“Objection!” Wright barked. “That may well be…” He struck his desk. “but what’s important is what caused her to think she saw what she did.”
“Oh? And I suppose you have an explanation?” He struck his desk. “If so, then by all means… please tell us what this ‘shadow’ really was!”
Wright pounded on his desk. “Ladies and gentlemen… It is the defense’s belief that on that fateful day two years ago… there indeed was something that looked similar to the Blue Badger… Something that is now sitting in this very room!”
“Mr. Wright…!” Ema chirped, excited.
The judge banged his gavel. “In this room?” he asked. “Very well, Mr. Wright. What is it that the witness saw in that instant? Please show us this mysterious ‘Blue Badger’ look-alike!”
Wright hit his desk. “The mysterious ‘Blue Badger’ was in fact… this!” He took an old pot out of his bag.
“But that’s… Er, what exactly is that?”
“I believe it’s some sort of jar.”
“But Mr. Wright!” Ema complained. “That doesn’t look anything like the Blue Badger!”
“Indeed it doesn’t. As it stands now, it’s just a plain jar. However… What if we were to change our viewpoint?”
“Our viewpoint…?” the judge asked.
Wright picked up the jar and held it by the wide section, rotating it. He turned it to show everyone. Indeed, it looked just like the head of that monstrosity.
“Well…?” Wright asked, confident. “Is this a miracle or what? No one can possibly deny this jar’s resemblance to the Blue Badger!”
“No…” Miles muttered. “It can’t be!”
The gallery started muttering until the judge banged his gavel.
“Order! Order!” he bellowed. “The defense has proven its claim. The mysterious ‘Blue Badger’ witnessed on the day of the crime was actually this…”
“Objection!” Miles interrupted. “Although we all enjoyed Mr. Wright’s dramatic performance, one question remains…” He struck his desk. “What’s your point!?”
“What do you mean?” Wright replied.
“So that Badger thing was actually just a jar. That doesn’t change anything!”
“Objection! I’m afraid that’s where you’re wrong, Mr. Edgeworth. You see…” He paused to slam his desk. “this changes everything!”
“Indeed? Very well, then. Please tell us… What’s different now that we know the witness saw this jar?”
“Allow me to take these in turn. At the moment of the murder, the witness saw this jar.”
“Not only that, but she saw it at a very specific angle.”
“Knowing this, where could she have seen this jar?”
“Where…?” the judge asked, confused as usual.
“The location of the jar is shown in a picture taken on the day of the crime. It’s on a shelf in the office of Damon Gant.”
“Objection!” Miles yelled, hitting his desk. “But the body was found lying near Lana Skye’s desk! The witness testified so herself!”
“Objection!” Wright hit his desk. “Yes! And it is these two facts that reveal what actually transpired! You see… The struggle between Darke and Marshall did not take place in Lana Skye’s office! It happened on the other side of the room, in Chief Gant’s office!”
“Objection! Are you implying the murderer moved the victim’s body? From Damon Gant’s office to Lana Skye’s office?”
“Why would he do that!? There’s no reason!”
Wright nodded. “Exactly,” he said. “If there wasn’t a ‘reason’… he wouldn’t have gone through the trouble. The only logical conclusion… is that there was a ‘reason.’”
“Do you know what that reason was, Mr. Wright?” the judge asked.
“Please recall the witness’s testimony. She said she knocked away the man who was holding up the knife. In the next instant, the jar was hit and flew through the air. Now tell me… What could have sent the jar flying?”
“That would have to have been… the impact the man made when he was knocked into the wall?”
“Ladies and gentlemen… if I may draw your attention to this picture once more. If the man was knocked in the direction of the shelf the jar was sitting on… what would he have hit?”
“A-AHHHHHH…” Ema whimpered.
“The suit of armor!” the judge answered. “Holding… a very sharp and dangerous-looking sword…”
“Yes,” Wright said. “And since the man who was knocked into the armor was carrying a broken knife… he would have had to have been Neil Marshall, wielding the Prosecutor’s Award.”
“No…” Miles said. “Mr. Wright… You can’t be thinking…”
“Yes. There is another possibility of what actually transpired in that room.”
“Another possibility?” the judge asked.
Wright banged on his desk. “Of course the perpetrator would have had no idea, but nevertheless!” Wright started sweating profusely.
“Mr. Wright? What’s the matter?”
“If events took place as the defense theorizes…” Miles said, “then the outcome is obvious. In that moment… assuming the man Ema Skye knocked away was actually Prosecutor Neil Marshall…” Miles could not bring himself to finish. The dead silence in the courtroom established that everyone understood what Wright was implying.
“You mean…” Ema stammered, “Mr. Marshall died… because of… me…? NOOOOOOOOOO!!!”
With that scream, Ema fainted on the stand.
“I never imagined her testimony would lead to this…” Miles said, trying to contain his shock.
“So it was the witness who took the victim’s life…” the judge confirmed, “and then proved so with her own testimony! This is unprecedented!”
The gallery filled the courtroom with noise, but one voice silenced them better than the judge’s gavel possibly could.
“Objection!” Lana yelled, breaking free from the bailiff’s grasp and running to the stand. “What… What are you saying!?”
“I’m sorry, Ms. Skye,” Wright said, “but given the circumstances…”
“Joe Darke murdered Prosecutor Marshall! How can you think it was Ema!? How dare you try to pin the crime on her!?” She started biting her thumb.Apparently, you think it’s possible, Lana.
“Imagine that, coming from you,” Miles countered. “If you recall, it was you who admitted to forging evidence two years ago. The reason you moved Prosecutor Marshall’s body… was to keep anyone else from finding out what Ema did, wasn’t it?”
“I assure you, Mr. Edgeworth,” Lana snapped, “I have no idea what you’re talking about. If you hope to have anyone believe your insane allegations, I’m afraid you’re going to have to have proof. Tell me… Do you have any conclusive evidence that proves my sister killed Neil Marshall?”
“E-evidence?” Wright stuttered.
“I’m willing to bet you don’t.”
“Yes… it certainly would be difficult to prove this with evidence,” the judge agreed.
“If we don’t have evidence,” Miles responded, “then we’ll have to rely on testimony.”
Lana turned away. “I’m afraid that won’t work in this case,” she said. “Both parties involved in this incident are dead.”
“Hmph. Touché, Ms. Skye. Of course… That only leaves us with one possibility.”
“What do you mean, Mr. Edgeworth?” the judge demanded.
“I mean, the possibility that the victim has left us a message. For better or for worse, Mr. Marshall did not die instantly. He may have left behind the name of the person who took his life… somehow.”
“That’s…” Lana stammered. “That’s impossible!” She looked to Miles. He could see in her eyes that she was scared.I’m sorry, Lana, but I’m not turning back.
The judge banged his gavel. “Well, Mr. Wright?” he asked. “This is the only possibility left to you. A message from the deceased… Does such a message exist?”
“The real murderer’s name that the victim may have left behind…” Wright trailed off. He struck his desk. “This ‘message’ from the deceased… is already in our possession.”
“Mr. Wright!” Lana yelled. “Will you stop at nothing to prove my sister a murderer?”
“Do not be mistaken, Ms. Skye,” Miles said. “Our purpose is not to accuse Ema of any crime. There is only one thing we seek: the truth.” Miles hit his desk. “No matter how painful it may be.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Now then, Mr. Wright,” he said. “Please show us the piece of evidence… that conveys a message from the deceased!”
“This is the message from the deceased,” Wright said, indicating the jar.
“This is that ‘Blue Badger’ from before, right?”
“Oh, is he going to just speak the killer’s name?” Lana joked, clearly furious.
“If that thing could, I’m sure it would,” Miles said.
“A message was left here…” Wright said, “on the surface of this jar.”
“What do you mean?” the judge asked.
“If you look closely, you can see a faint trail of blood on this jar.”
“It looks like someone wiped the blood away,” Miles said. If Ema’s the killer, I’d bet every dollar to my name that Lana did it.
“Yes, but notice: for some reason…” Wright said, “the blood on some of the fragments was not wiped away.”
“Yes…” the judge agreed, “there is a line here… drawn in blood!”
“So what you’re saying,” Miles confirmed, “is that these ‘dots’… were once lines!”
“Prosecutor Marshall did not die instantly,” Wright said. “He used the few precious moments left to him to leave behind a message!”
“One that someone apparently wiped away… But blood must have seeped into the jar where the lines change directions.”
Wright pounded on his desk. “Precisely so! All we need to do is connect these points… and the victim’s message will become apparent!”
“N-no…!” Lana whimpered, again biting her thumb.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Mr. Wright!” he called. “What kind of message did the victim leave for us!?”
“Your Honor…” Wright replied, “I believe these blood stains will reveal to us the answer!”
Wright took a pen and started scribbling on the surface of the jar. When he was done, he showed the message. The ink connected the dots to show Ema’s name.
“‘Ema’…” Wright said.
“So this is the final message Prosecutor Marshall left behind,” Miles stated.
“Of all people…” the judge said. “She may not have meant it… but in the end, the one who took the victim’s life…”
“was Ema Skye,” Wright finished.
Miles saw a tear flow from Lana’s right eye.I’m sorry, Lana.
“See, Worthy?” Gant’s voice teased. “Can’t say I didn’t warn you.” Gant had managed to walk in without anyone noticing, and was now in Lana’s place at the stand.
“Chief Gant…” Miles said.
“Do you understand the implications of what you’ve done?”
“What…? What are you talking about?”
“Two years ago, Joe Darke was sentenced to death. He was convicted because of his final murder.” He grasped his tie in his left hand and smiled sinisterly. “I believe you were the prosecutor in the case, were you not?”
“Ack!” I… I proved…
“Yes, Worthy,” Gant said. “Because of you… an innocent man was sentenced to death. Not only that… but you used forged evidence to ensure his conviction!”
“K-kkckck!” Miles hissed. “KKCKRRAAAAHH!!!”
“Objection!” Wright yelled. “But Joe Darke really was a serial murderer! That’s undeniable!”
“I’m afraid that’s not important,” Gant replied. “Didn’t you know? We aren’t defenders of justice.”
“We’re merely keepers of the law. Sentencing a man to death… is no light matter. Even if there wasn’t any cover-up or evidence forgery… ultimately the responsibility falls on the prosecutor in charge.”I… I failed…
“Despite what anyone may say, this fact cannot be denied,” Gant said.
The courtroom was noisier than a military jet. The judge attempted in vain to restore order. Ultimately, he was unable to do so, and instead declared a recess.
Miles walked into the Defendant Lobby; he knew that finding the truth would require more than just his own efforts. He had plenty of doubts about himself, but he had no doubts about what he had to do next. The forgery had been exposed, but there was more to be found—such as Gant’s role. He knew he had to face that man, and he was not going to leave until only one of them was left standing. The police were the keepers of the law, as Gant had said, but Miles was no keeper of the law. As a lawyer, he was a defender of justice.
“Sorry, Edgeworth,” Wright said. “I didn’t mean to get you in trouble…”
“Hmph,” Miles scoffed. “Don’t worry about it. This is my problem, not yours.”
“Hope I’m not interrupting anything, pals,” Gumshoe said as he entered the lobby with a loud slam of the door. Neither Miles nor Wright responded. “Oh… Guess I am. I’ll come back later.” He turned to walk away.
“Oh, Detective Gumshoe!” Wright called. “What is it?” Gumshoe turned around.
“You’ve got a lot of nerve, pal! Making a detective run all around while on duty, and to top it off you call me here… I’ve seen happier people at funerals!”
“I take it Lana’s having you run errands again.”
“Let me tell you, this is the last time, pal!” He took a book out of his coat. “Here. She asked me to give this to you if there was a break in today’s trial.”
“The Chief Prosecutor also wanted me to give you a message.”
“She said, ‘If you’re planning to take HIM on, you’re going to need this book.’”
Wright put the book in his coat.So it is Gant…
“Doesn’t look like that book’ll do you any good now though,” Gumshoe said. “All that’s left now is the Chief Prosecutor’s sentence.”
“That’s where you’re wrong, Detective,” Wright replied.
“Haven’t you figured it out yet?” Miles asked the oaf. “Why I’m still sitting in that prosecutor’s seat… despite all these allegations being thrown at me?”
“The real trial today… hasn’t begun yet.”
“What!? What else is there left to do? Your credibility’s been all but ruined with this forged evidence you were unaware of, Ema Skye found out she unwittingly caused a man’s death… And now you’re telling me you want to do more!? You’ve gotta be kidding me, pal!”
“You’re missing the point, Detective. Lana didn’t murder Detective Goodman.”And she actually told you that?
“She merely stuck a knife into his dead body,” Wright said. “That means the real killer… is still out there.”
“What!?” Gumshoe almost screamed.
Miles walked out of the lobby and to the medical office. Knowing Lana, she would probably be at Ema’s side. The truth was going to come out soon; he knew it. However, he wanted to hear the words from Lana’s lips. He pushed the door open and saw Lana sitting in a chair next to Ema, who was still unconscious and lying on her back on a bed (if it could be called that). Lana looked over, saw who had come, and instantly turned her head back to face Ema.
“Now is not the time to distance yourself from me,” Miles said, taking a chair and sitting down across from Lana. He would have sat next to her and held her hand, but he was worried that she might be angry with him and hurt him.
“Why are you here?” Lana asked bitterly, not bothering to face her former fiancée.
“Because I want—no, I need—to hear the truth from you.”
“Stop right there. You have nothing to gain anymore from lying. Whether you hinder us or help us, Wright and I will both fight to find the truth, even if we have to strike you down to do so.”
Lana turned to face Miles and glared at him. “You’ve turned my sister into a killer. I have nothing to tell you.”
“Fine. Then I’ll tell you the truth. It’s Gant. He’s the one who’s been tormenting you these past two years, and I am going to call him to the stand and drag the truth out of him. He knew about what you did to the crime scene and held it over your head to control you.”
“And where’s your proof it’s Gant?”
“In Wright’s coat pocket.”
“Gumshoe handed him a book in the Defendant Lobby. I believe it was titled Evidence Law?”
“Ah…” She started biting her thumb.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen between us after this trial is over, but there’s one thing that book made clear to me: you’re innocent, and you lied to protect Ema. I don’t know everything, but I know that. And… You intend to defeat him. That book has a purpose, or else you would not have given it to Wright.” Miles tried to look Lana in the eye, but she turned away.
“All the times you’ve been there to comfort me,” Miles said, “you looked me right in the eye and did everything you could to make me listen. Now it’s my turn. You’re not fighting Gant alone. I’m angry with you for lying to me, but I can still tell that I love you, too. Now, Lana… please… Tell me the truth. You didn’t kill Goodman, did you?”
Lana didn’t respond. Miles got up from his chair and kneeled down on the floor in front of her.
“Do you really want it to end this way?” he asked her. In a swift motion, he reached over and took Lana’s left hand in his right hand. “Lana… You can trust me.” She attempted to free her hand, but Miles refused, simply tightening his grip. “You can keep pretending to serve Gant in court and feigning guilt; I won’t question it in there. But here, I only care about seeing proof that I still have some reason to trust you. I said it before, and I will say it again: I love you. And now we can finally fight to set you free, side by side.”
Miles felt Lana’s hand stop trying to free itself. “Even if you set me free, Ema—”
“Ema will be fine. Considering the circumstances, even Manfred von Karma would not be able to prove her guilty of anything more than justified self-defense. If I have to, I will personally hire the best defense attorney for her that I can find. After all she’s done to help us find the truth, I owe it to her—and you. You have my word that she will not be seen as a criminal.”
Lana said nothing. He could see the anger had left her eyes, though.
“Please tell me: what really happened? What you say here is not admissible as testimony.”
“You’re right,” Lana finally said. “Gant… he’s the blackmailer you’re looking for. I didn’t kill Goodman. Gant just told me to dispose of the body. When I saw that… that…” She paused.
“You removed it and put my knife in the wound,” Miles finished.
“Y-yes… But Ms. Starr caught me.”
“And Gant? Is he the killer?”
“I don’t know, but that’s what I think.”
“Then we have even more reason to fight him. The truth will come out—all of it.” He got up, still holding Lana’s hand. At last, Lana looked at him. “Would a kiss be asking too much?”
He saw Lana’s sad eyes lose their veil of tears as the rest of her face shifted into a faint smile. She stood up, placing her right hand in Miles’s left, and leaned toward Miles. He, in turn, leaned in towards Lana’s face and placed a light kiss on her lips.
“I don’t think I’m ready to marry you,” Miles said after their lips parted, still holding Lana’s hands, “but I know for a fact that I don’t want to leave your side. You’ve always been there for me, so now—”
Miles heard a knock on the door.
“This never happened,” Lana said, changing her expression back to the ice sculpture it had been these past two years. Miles let go of her hands with a nod and managed to force his own face back to an emotionless gaze.
“What is it?” Miles asked the person behind the door.
“Oh!” Gumshoe yelped, opening the door. “M-Mr. Edgeworth!”
“What is it?”
“Court’s gonna start up again.”
Miles walked out the door with Gumshoe, Lana following.
The judge called court back into session with a whack of his gavel.
“The court will now reconvene for the trial of Ms. Lana Skye,” he said. “Mr. Edgeworth.”
“Yes, Your Honor?” Miles asked.
“The inquiry committee is planning to impose harsh penalties for your actions.”
Miles took a bow. I’ll be ashamed later.
“Thank you for the news, Your Honor.”
“Yes, well…” The judge cleared his throat. “Normally, this is where the prosecution calls forth a witness… but, er…” He cleared his throat again and coughed a couple of times. “This isn’t easy to say… You see, there is some concern that Mr. Edgeworth may have, ah…”
“Struck a bargain?” Miles finished. “You think I may have manipulated the witnesses.”
“I didn’t say that! It’s just, you see… Everyone has been talking, and…”I see… How to proceed… Wait. Wright knows the truth, too.
“Very well, Your Honor. I have a solution.”
“That being the case, the prosecution will allow the defense to call forth all further witnesses.”
“What!? But there’s never been a case example…”
“Undeniably this is an unusual arrangement, but a very effective one. It would prove that I haven’t struck any ‘deals’ with the witnesses.”
“Hmm… Well, Mr. Wright? What do you say?”
“Very well,” Wright said with a nod. “The defense accepts the prosecution’s proposal.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Then it’s settled. The, uh… defense… may now call forth the next witness!”
“Mr. Wright,” Miles said. “You do realize this is your last chance? If you call the wrong witness, this trial is as good as over.”
“The defense calls… Damon Gant,” Wright said, hitting his desk. “The defense calls Damon Gant to the stand!”
“D-Damon Gant…?” the judge asked. “What does he have to do with anything!?”He has everything to do with everything, Your Honor. And we’re going to prove it.
“As the defendant’s partner two years ago,” Wright explained, "Mr. Gant has first-hand knowledge of the crime. I feel we should hear what he has to say about it.”
“As luck would have it,” Miles added, “he should still be in the courthouse. He would also be the least likely to have been manipulated by me in any way. Wouldn’t you agree, Your Honor?”
“True… All right. Bailiff! Please escort Mr. Gant to the stand!”
Gant took the stand.
“Witness,” Miles called. “Please state your name and occupation.”
“What is this, some kind of practical joke?” Gant replied. “I was just on my way to lunch!”
“Your name and occupation, sir.”
“Worthy… Are you sure you want to do this?”Yes.
Miles struck his desk. “Your name and occupation!”
Gant waited a moment to build up pressure. “So… You want to play hardball, eh?”
“P-please, Mr. Gant,” the judge requested.
“Fine. My name is Damon Gant. I’m the acting Chief of Police.”
“Now then, Chief Gant,” Wright said. “The court requests to hear your testimony.”
“Oh, Wrighto. What’s with the grim face?”
“First, let’s clear up this SL-9 Incident.”
“Oh, you mean that time when Lana’s sister murdered that prosecutor? Personally, I think it’s been made pretty clear already.”
“There are still some things unaccounted for.”
“Oh? Like what?”Like the role you played in all of this.
“Like the role you played in all of this,” Wright replied in time with Miles’s thoughts.
“Son… Either you’re very brave… or very foolish. You are aware of course that a police chief has all kinds of weapons at his disposal?”
“Sure. Take my testimony, for example. I don’t have to give it if I don’t want to.”
“What? Is that true?”
“I’m afraid so…” the judge answered. “The Chief of Police has the right to refuse to testify.”
“Of course,” Miles added, “such an action carries with it certain risks…”
“Don’t worry,” Gant said. “I’m not here to hinder your trial. Just remember… If this turns out to be a big waste of time, don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Very well,” he said. “The witness may now begin his testimony.”
“As I recall, Neil and I were questioning him that day. To make a long story short, we slipped up. That power outage didn’t help either. When I went to my office, I found Lana there. Apparently she had already… ‘arranged’ the crime scene. As you can see, I had nothing to do with the ‘forgery.’”
“Hmm… Is that when Darke was arrested?”
“Him? He was lying on the floor unconscious. When Ema sent Neil flying… it seems Darke bumped his head.”
“I see… Everything seems pretty clear-cut.”
“You claim you had nothing to do with the forgery…” Wright said, shaking his head after pausing, “but I’m afraid that is a claim you cannot back up!”
“Explain yourself,” Gant requested, fiddling with his hair and not appearing to feel threatened in the least.
“Several pieces of evidence were found in your office. Take this list, for example.” Wright held up his half of the SL-9 evidence list.
“That’s the list Ema Skye drew her picture on…” the judge said.
“This was discovered in your desk. Not only that, but a piece of this jar that was sitting in your office…” He paused and hit his desk. “was found inside your safe!”
“It was found where!?”
“You see, Chief Gant. These articles of evidence uncovered in your office…” He paused again to strike his desk. “are both concrete proof… that you also played a part in the illegal investigation!”
The gallery started up, silenced by the judge’s gavel. “Chief Gant! What’s the meaning of this!?”
“Ho!” Gant scoffed. “Here’s a defense attorney who may even rival Worthy!”Wright, you got careless. Though I believe you, you don’t have proof that you’re right.
“So you admit to it, then?” Wright pressed. “That you were involved in the forgery?”
“Who, me?” Gant taunted. “Or do you mean… you?”
“Me? Why would I have anything to do with that!?”
“Well… You were the one who snuck into my office when you ‘found’ this evidence. Prosecutors aren’t the only ones capable of forging evidence, you know. Defense attorneys can do so too. Isn’t that right, Wrighto?”
“Objection!” Miles barked, striking his desk. “However! Detective Gumshoe was present during the investigation!”
“Worthy, my boy. Not even detectives are exempt from the law. Rest assured Dick will receive his due punishment.”
“Wh…” You’re one to talk, Gant!
“WHAAAAT!?” Wright screamed.
The judge banged his gavel. “Yes, well,” he said. “In light of the detective’s presence… please give us your testimony regarding these pieces of evidence found in your office, and their relation to the forgery that took place at the crime scene.”
“My, my…” Gant teased. “Kids these days no longer know how to put two and two together…”Understandable when their teacher says it’s five.
“Let’s see, what was it now?” Gant confirmed. “A jar fragment… and a list? For all I know, you could have planted them in my office. anyway, you can’t prove ‘when’ those pieces of evidence were discovered. If they were found after Darke was convicted, then they’re worthless. There’s no reason I’d participate in a forgery. Rearranging the crime scene wouldn’t help me out in any way.”
“Hmm…” the judge mumbled. “Mr. Wright.”
“Yes, Your Honor?” Wright replied.
“When investigating the crime scene… you should have been more careful to observe protocol.”
“You do understand that I am the Chief of Police, right?” Gant added, clapping his hands. “There will be consequences…”
“Ooh…” Wright groaned.
“Indeed, I believe I will press charges… so you won’t make the same mistake again.”
“My apologies, Chief,” the judge cut in, “but would you mind waiting until tomorrow for that? Today is… well, you know…”
“All right, Udgey. In return, though…”
“I know! I know! That place, right?”And now I’m curious about what makes today special for the judge… No matter; we have more important things to worry about.
“Are you saying this jar fragment… wasn’t discovered in the initial investigation?” Wright asked.
“It would appear not,” Gant replied. “After all, it wasn’t listed in the evidence list. For all we know, it could have suddenly materialized the day after Darke was sentenced.”
“Objection!” Wright pounded on his desk. “Oh, and wouldn’t that be convenient…”
“Wright,” Miles interrupted. “The Chief is talking about a ‘possibility.’ So long as you can’t rule that out, your remarks, however clever they may be, will only succeed in wasting time.”
“Come now, Mr. Wright,” Gant said. “Think about it. There’s no reason I’d participate in a forgery. Rearranging the crime scene wouldn’t help me out in any way.”
“Really, Chief Gant?” Wright asked. “At the very least, there is one very large benefit you’ve reaped from all this.”
“Oh? I wasn’t aware. What is this ‘benefit’?”
“That of course would be the position you have—Chief of Police.”
“Oh…” the judge said.
“The resolution of the SL-9 Incident secured your promotion to Chief. That in itself is sufficient motive!”
“Ho! Ho! Ho!” Gant guffawed, clapping. “Oh, that’s a good one!”
“Do you really think I’m that incompetent?”
“What do you mean?”
“Even without that case, I was already next in line to become the next chief. The resolution of SL-9 merely sped up the inevitable a little.”
“Is that true, Edgeworth?” Wright asked.
“Yes…” Miles replied. “He was going to be made Chief anyway.”
“Be careful when pointing that finger…” Gant warned, “or you might wind up being the one pointed at!”
“So that means…” Miles said, “there’s only one possible motivation for you to commit forgery. If you didn’t do it for yourself… then you did it for someone else.” Your lovely assistant.
“Don’t be silly, Worthy,” Gant responded. “You know me better than that. There are only three people I look out for: Me, Myself and I. There, it’s out in the open now. Udgey, would you mind if I changed my testimony a little?”
“By all means, please do!” the judge replied.
“I wouldn’t be anyone’s ‘accomplice’ if there was nothing in it for me.”
“‘Nothing in it’ for you?” Wright asked.
“Sorry, but the only person I care about is Yours Truly. That girl… Lana’s little sister, was it? If you think I felt sorry for her, you’d better think again.”
“You’re right…” Miles commented. “You don’t feel sorry for anyone.”
“Be tough on crime and tough on people. That’s how I was raised.”
“You seem to be lax enough on yourself, though.”
“Ho! Ho! Ho! Oh, that’s a good one, Worthy!”
“True, you might not help out anyone for their sake,” Wright said. “But if it would benefit you… you might decide to assist someone.”And now we finally get to show the world Gant’s true colors.
“Mr. Wright,” the judge said. “It appears you’re positively determined to portray the Chief… as a nice man who likes to lend people a hand.”As clueless as ever.
The judge banged his gavel. “Very well, I’ll ask,” he continued. “Who is this person you believe Chief Gant may have helped forge evidence?”
“Lana Skye,” Wright replied.
“Chief Prosecutor Lana Skye… Th-the defendant!?”
“I believe it’s quite obvious in light of the circumstances. Ema Skye fell victim to an unfortunate series of events. Who would want to help her more than her own sister, Lana? And as for Chief Gant… he would also have a reason to help Lana if she asked him to.” Wright banged on his desk. “That reason, of course, is… self profit.”
“Self profit…? What do you mean?”
“After the SL-9 Incident was resolved… Lana Skye was appointed Chief Prosecutor at the Prosecutor’s Office. The person who arranged this job change… was you, Chief Gant.”
“B-but… how would he profit from all of this?”
“He would be able to use the Chief Prosecutor as his puppet!” Miles answered. He struck his desk. “Essentially… he would acquire unchecked authority over all investigations!”
“Do you mean to tell me… that despite the Chief’s formidable appearance, he plays with puppets!?”Idiot…
“Oh, wait,” the judge corrected. “You must mean ‘puppet’ as in someone forced to do his bidding… Never mind!”
Wright slammed his desk. “Admit it, Chief!” he pressed. “You assisted Lana Skye in forging evidence! Your motive: to appoint her as Chief Prosecutor so you could control her!”
“Wrighto, my boy,” Gant replied. “You have quite an imagination. Let me ask you something.”
“Do you have any proof of this? That I ‘controlled’ Lana? For example, is Lana testifying that I’ve done such a thing?”
“Lana…”Even now, I doubt she’d testify against him. As long as she believes Ema’s threatened by him, she’ll keep quiet.
“I’m afraid without any proof,” the judge said, “this all amounts to nothing more than mere conjecture.”
“Unless…” Miles said, “that is also what happened in this incident…”
“‘This’ incident…? Er… which one would that be?”The one Lana’s on trial for, Judge Clousless.
“Of course I’m talking about the murder of Detective Bruce Goodman,” Miles answered. “The Chief Prosecutor has been acting strange throughout this entire trial. Almost as if… someone has been ‘controlling’ her!”
“Worthy…” Gant said. “You’d better watch your tongue… I wouldn’t want you to get hurt.”This duel is not to first blood, Gant. What’s one small wound compared to the one you gave me two years ago?
“Just what do you mean?” the judge asked.
Wright hit his desk. “What he means, Your Honor,” he explained, “is that Chief Gant is involved in the murder of Detective Goodman. Not only that… but the Chief is now making Lana take the rap to cover up his involvement!”
“Wha… wha… wha… WWWHHHAAAAAATTT!!!?”
The gallery was in an uproar. The judge banged his gavel repeatedly.
Order! Order! Order! I SAID… ORDEEEEERRRR!!! Mr. Wright! You… You can’t be serious!”
“Huh?” Wright asked.
“This… This is an affront to the highest ranking officer in our law enforcement agency! To accuse the Chief of Pollice of blackmail… and murder!!!? That’s i… i… i-i-i-i-i-i-i-IMPOSSIBLE!!!”
The gallery started murmuring again.All are equal before the law, Your Honor. The police are the keepers of the law, but the courts are the defenders of justice.
“Your Honor,” Wright stammered, “I was merely reiterating… what Mr. Edgeworth said, in easier-to-understand language.”
Miles smiled evilly. “It’s too late, Mr. Wright,” he replied. He hit his desk. “There’s no turning back for us now.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Can you prove this, Mr. Wright?” he asked. “that the Chief, a high-ranking officer of the law, is involved in this murder!?”
“Regardless of his rank or title,” Miles said, “Chief Gant is just a man. The question is, is he a criminal? I believe the evidence will tell.”
“I see. Alright, then. Show us this evidence that ties Chief Gant to the murder of Detective Goodman. Just remember… It better be good!”
“Take that!” Wright shouted, holding up the ID Card Record.
“This is the ID card list…”
“Yes, the one that shows who entered the evidence room on the day of the crime. There was one ID on the list we couldn’t determine the owner of yesterday… 7777777.”
“Sorry, but there’s no way you can prove that’s my card number,” Gant said.
“It’s your number.”
“What!?” the judge yelped. “How do you know that!?”
“The safe in Chief Gant’s Office requires a code to open. A seven-digit code…”
“Seven digits… You don’t mean…”
“I’m afraid so, Your Honor. The code was ‘7777777’… The same as the remaining ID card number on that list!” He pounded on his desk. “Chief Gant! You entered the evidence room on the day of the crime!”Judging by the change of expression on your face, Gant, I imagine you are tiring out. Don’t worry. One thrust to the heart is all it takes to end this.
The gallery started murmuring. The judge banged his gavel.
“Order! Order!” he shouted. “Chief Gant! What do you have to say!?”
Gant was silent for a moment. His right fist was clenched, sweat on his brow. “Nothing,” he said. “The defense’s search of my office was in violation of regulations.”
“And I will demand Mr. Wright be punished to the maximum extent of the law,” Miles said. He then hit his desk. “But right now, this court demands an explanation from you… about the use of this ID card!”
Gant said nothing. The judge banged his gavel.
“Chief Gant!” he exclaimed. “So you admit it? You entered the evidence room… on the day of the crime!?”
“What about it? I’m Chief of Police. Whether it’s the evidence room or the bathroom, what’s the difference? I can go anywhere I want.”
“Tell me,” Miles requested. “When you entered the room… were you alone?”
“I always go to the bathroom alone… as I do with the evidence room.”
“Detective Goodman wouldn’t have happened to be with you that day… would he?” Wright asked.”
“O-of course not! Why would he be? I hadn’t seen him in days!”
“Objection! You hadn’t seen him… ‘in days’? Chief Gant… I’m afraid you’ve just undone yourself.” He pounded on his desk, then pointed at Gant. “On that day, you had to have met with Detective Goodman!”
The judge banged his gavel. “What do you mean!?” he asked. “This trial’s purpose is to determine Lana Skye’s guilt!”
“Objection!” Miles shouted, striking his desk. “No it isn’t, Your Honor. This trial’s purpose is to determine the truth. If Chief Gant met the victim on the day of the crime,” He struck his desk again. “then we need to determine one thing: what transpired during that meeting!”
The judge banged his gavel. “In that case, Mr. Wright!” he called. “I’m going to have to ask you for evidence! Show us proof that the victim went to meet Chief Gant on the day of the crime!”
“Detective Goodman lost his ID card on the day of the crime,” Wright replied.
“Or to be more accurate, Jake Marshall stole it,” Miles stated.
“So Detective Goodman filled out a lost item report. He would have had to give that report… to the Chief of Police!”
“Yet you are in possession of the report…” Gant sneered, “which means you can’t be sure if he filed it.”
“He filed it. How do I know, you ask? Because he needed to enter the evidence room that day.”
“He needed to?” the judge asked.
“Yes. To transfer the evidence out.”
“Detective Goodman took the form to you, Chief Gant. Then… you accompanied the detective to the evidence room!”
“I ‘accompanied’ him?” Gant asked through gritted teeth.
“There’s no other way the murderer and Detective Goodman could have entered the room!”
The gallery began murmuring.
“Hold on,” Gant said. “Let me guess what you’re going to say next. I, the Chief of Police, murdered poor Goodman!”
“Exactly,” Wright said with a nod.
“But wait!” the judge interrupted. “The Chief didn’t necessarily need to accompany him to the evidence room. He could have just lent him his ID card.”
“Yes…” Gant confirmed. “Now that you mention it, I believe I might have done something of the sort.”
“Objection!” Miles barked. “Sorry, but that’s not possible. According to the record, your card was used only once. But you showed us your ID card earlier. If you had really ‘lent’ it to Detective Goodman,” Miles hit his desk. “it would have been found on his body!”
The gallery filled the courtroom with noise. The judge banged his gavel to calm them. “Chief Gant!” he cried. ‘Y-you didn’t…!”
“The murder was most likely committed on the spur of the moment,” Wright said. “No one in their right mind would choose the Police Department as a place to commit murder. After the murder, you contacted Lana at the Prosecutor’s office. Why else? To dispose of Detective Goodman’s body.”
“Objection!” Miles shouted. “However, the victim’s body was discovered in the Prosecutor’s Office’s parking lot. How did he manage to move it there?”
“I was at the Police Department the entire day, you know,” Gant said.
“And everyone’s aware that Lana stayed at the Prosecutor’s Office after the ceremony.”
“Everyone except me, it seems…” Wright thought out loud. “Still, you’re the Chief of Police. You have an entire police force at your disposal.”
“Oh, so you think I just ordered an officer to do it?” Gant taunted. “‘Hey you. Take this here dead body over to the Prosecutor’s Office.’ I don’t think so…”
“Chief Gant. You left all the evidence we need to prove how you moved the body to the Prosecutor’s Office.”
The judge banged his gavel. “How could the Chief have moved the body!?” he demanded. “Mr. Wright! Show us this evidence!”
“To move the victim’s body… Chief Gant used this!” He took out a screwdriver. “This is how he moved Detective Goodman’s body!”
“What’s that? A screwdriver? But what does that have to do with this case?”
“Mr. Edgeworth. Think back to the day of the crime. What is this screwdriver doing here?”
“It’s here because…” Miles trailed off. Wait… No!
“A-AAAHHHH!” That’s why he had me retrieve that stupid tool!?
“After the ceremony ended that day, I didn’t plan to return to the Prosecutor’s Office.”
“But you did. Because Chief Gant asked you to.”
“You mean I… I…”
“The body was found in the trunk of Mr. Edgeworth’s car. I think it’s obvious what happened. The body was moved by that car!”
The gallery started up. The judge banged his gavel. “Detective Goodman’s body…” he exclaimed, “was carried in the trunk of Mr. Edgeworth’s car!”
“Yes. Unless, of course, you have another explanation, Chief? Why else would you have asked Mr. Edgeworth to carry evidence from a closed case? There’s only one plausible explanation: to transport the body to your accomplice… Ms. Lana Skye!”
The gallery began murmuring again. The judge banged his gavel yet again.
“Order! Order! Order!” he shouted. “What’s going on here!? Is there no room for rebuttal to the defense’s outrageous accusations!?”
“Think back to the photograph Ms. Starr took at the Prosecutor’s Office,” Wright said. “This was not a photo of the body being stuffed in the trunk to be taken away. It was exactly the opposite…”
“It is a photo of the body being taken from the trunk!” Miles finished.
“Chief Gant!” the judge barked. “Please, say something!”
“I believe…” Gant said, pausing until the court was silent, “your time’s up.”
“My ‘time’s up’?”
“Sorry, Wrighto, but I’m having lunch with the District Attorney General after this. We have to get going if we’re going to make it in time for the early bird special.”
“Objection!” Wright yelled. “B-but… The cross-examination isn’t finished yet!”
“Remember what I told you earlier? A police chief… has all kinds of weapons at his disposal.”
“Like the right to refuse to testify. I’m invoking that right now.”
“What!?” the judge howled. “That is not a right to be casually invoked. There are certain risks to be considered!”
“Objection!” Miles roared, striking his desk. “So you’re going to just run away after all this!?”
“‘Run away’?” Gant repeated. “Don’t make me laugh, Worthy.”Cur!
“‘I stabbed ol’ Goodman.’ That’s what you’re saying, right?” Gant taunted. “But if you had any conclusive evidence, you would have presented it by now.”
“Well I…” Wright stammered.
“You think I had Lana dispose of the body? If so, then show your proof and get it over with!”
“Hmm…” the judge mumbled. “I’ll say it again, Mr. Wright. Damon Gant is the current Chief of Police. This court will not tolerate any accusations against him without concrete proof. Well, Mr. Wright?”
“Y-Your Honor?” Wright replied.
“Do you have any concrete proof? Proof that Chief Gant murdered Detective Goodman and made Ms. Skye dispose of his body?”Unfortunately, Gant’s right. If there was any, Wright would have presented it along with his accusation.
“No, Your Honor,” Wright said. “At present I have no conclusive evidence.”
“Hmph!” Gant scoffed. “See, Udgey?”
“In that case…” the judge said, “this court is forced to penalize you for your allegations against the Chief.”
“What?” Wright yelped.
“I don’t gamble unless the stakes are high!” Gant said. “It seems that Lady Luck was on my side again today. Okay Udgey, I’ll leave the rest to you!”Think! That coward’s going to get away! How can we prove he’s the killer!?
“I warned you earlier, Mr. Wright,” the judge said. “This… is an affront to a senior officer in our nation’s law enforcement agency.”Lana… I’m… No, wait… That’s it! Lana!
“WAAAAAAAHHHH!!!” Wright screamed.
“Objection!” Miles yelled. “‘Lady Luck,’ hm? Maybe we should have a word with her.”
“Mr. Edgeworth?” the judge asked. “What do you mean!?”
“There’s one ‘Lady’ who knows the real truth behind this trial… We haven’t yet had the honor of hearing her testimony. In the absence of conclusive evidence, the only other method of proof is testimony.”
“But Chief Gant has invoked his right to refuse to testify!” Wright replied.
“There’s still someone else.” Use your head, Wright. I said a lady, not a coward.
“One more witness who can answer all the questions raised in this trial. Someone right in this very room!”
“Mr. Edgeworth!” the judge called. “Who is this person!?”
“Hmph… Why are you asking me, Your Honor? Have you forgotten? The defense is the one calling witnesses today.”
The judge banged his gavel. “Mr. Wright. Does such a witness exist?”
“Yes, Your Honor!” Wright answered. “The defense calls forth… Lana Skye!”
“The defendant… Ms. Lana Skye!?”
“She was in the underground parking lot at 5:15 PM on February 21. Her task: to dispose of the victim’s body…” He paused to hit his desk. “in accordance with a certain someone’s orders!”
“Hmm… Mr. Edgeworth…?”
“The prosecution has no objections, Your Honor,” Miles replied. It’s only fitting that Lana be the one to deal the final blow.
The judge banged his gavel again. “Very well. The court will now take its final recess for the day. In fifteen minutes, we will reconvene to hear the defendant’s testimony. This court is now in re—”
“Hold on!” Gant’s voice called.
“Huh?” The judge noticed Gant had taken the stand again. “Chief Gant! I thought you were going to eat.”
“Listen good, Lana!” he warned. “I don’t think you need me to tell you this, but if you accept Mr. Wright’s claim… there will be terrible consequences. That’s right… Your sister will be found guilty… for Neil Marshall’s murder!”
“Ah!” Wright yelped.Not on my watch, coward.
“Of course, you’d never support such outrageous claims anyway… right?” Gant continued. “Just something to think about… All right then. I’ve got a lunch date to meet.” Gant left the courtroom.I doubt anyone in the courtroom now thinks of him as innocent. He just openly threatened Lana.
“Okay,” the judge said after recovering from the shock of Gant’s threat. “If there aren’t any further objections… this court is now in recess!”
Lana decided to stay in the courtroom. Given the situation, Miles thought it best for her to choose the right course of action. He had had his say with her, so it was pointless to continue trying to push her his way. Instead, Miles decided to join Wright at the Defendant Lobby. He was already there.
“Looks like we managed to stay in the game,” Miles said.
“Yeah,” Wright replied. “Thanks to your help, Edgeworth.”
“That Chief…” Gumshoe commented, walking in. “He’s something else, eh pals?”
“Ha ha ha. I’m not a ‘detective’ anymore.”
“Oh yeah. Sorry about that…”
“Ah, don’t worry. I’ve already decided where to work now! At your office!”
“Sure! I’ll take the place of that top-knotted girl you used to work with!”Right… Maya… I wonder what became of her…
“Still…” Gumshoe sighed. “Looks like we’re all out of moves now.”And so is Gant.
“Chief Gant’s done it again,” Gumshoe moaned. “How is it he always gets the upper hand!?”
“It’s not fair he has the right to refuse to testify!” Wright complained.
“Hmph,” Miles scoffed. “Settle down, Wright. Remember what the judge said?”
“‘Risks’… What did he mean by that?”
“It’s simple. If the Chief refuses to testify, the opposite also holds true.”
“You mean, he forfeits his right to say anything too!” Ema’s voice finished. Miles turned and saw that Ema had entered.
“Ema!” Wright gasped. “Are you okay?”
“Yeah,” she replied. “When I came to, I was in the medical office. I’ve been listening to the trial from the gallery.”That saves us the trouble of explaining it to her.
“Um, Ema… I’m sorry for what I said before,” Wright said.
“No, don’t be,” Ema replied. “It was the truth. You know, it’s funny. I almost feel somehow… relieved.”
“Yeah… Now I finally know what really happened. To think that all this time… my sister was being blackmailed by that terrible man! And she did it all… just to protect me.”
“Ever since her appointment as Chief Prosecutor,” Miles said, “everyone who knew her… said she changed.” On the outside, at least.
“Perhaps… it was easier that way for her.”
“What do you mean?” Gumshoe asked.
“What do you think I mean? To follow Chief Gant’s orders. She must have shut herself up deep inside… to force herself to do anything and everything the Chief told her to do.”
“It was all my fault,” Ema whimpered. “It’s all because I… I murdered Mr. Marshall.”
“Hey,” Gumshoe snapped. “Don’t go blaming yourself, now. If you want to blame anyone, blame society, pal!”Is that what you do when your salary gets cut, Gumshoe? It would certainly explain why you never learn.
“Chief Gant may be able to fool everyone else with his ‘forgery,’” Ema said, “ but he can’t fool my memory. I remember now. I knocked Mr. Marshall into that armor.”
“I… I see,” Wright said.
“Well, we’d better get back,” Gumshoe cut in. “It’s time for the final act!”
“Ema, why don’t you wait h—”
“No,” Ema interrupted. “I’m going with you. I want to be there… when Lana tells the truth.”And you should be there.
“Let’s go, Wright,” Miles said. “It’s time to end this.”
The judge banged his gavel, bringing court back into session.
“Now then…” he said. “Will the defendant, Ms. Lana Skye, please take the stand?”
Lana walked up to the stand.
“Ms. Lana Skye,” Miles said. “You are the Chief Prosecutor. I’m sure you’re aware of what is required of you.”
“But Mr. Edgeworth…” Lana replied, “you already know everything… You know all that I’ve done these past two years.”I do know, Lana, but the court does not, and if you don’t want to waste our only chance to strike that dishonorable Chief down, you will testify.
“Please provide the court with your testimony, Ms. Skye,” the judge requested. “And remember… you are under oath. We want to hear the truth.”
“Of course…” Lana said. “The truth…”
“Lana!” Ema called. “No matter what happens, I’ll always be your sister!”I’m not going to let you lie.
The judge banged his gavel. “Now then,” he said, “your testimony, if you will. First, tell us about your relationship with Gant.”
“I worked alongside Gant for years…” Lana said. “There’s no truth to this ‘blackmail’ theory. I fabricated the evidence two years ago all by myself. When I found Prosecutor Marshall’s body, I rearranged the crime scene. My only motivation was to get Darke convicted. It had nothing to do with Ema.”
“Hmm…” the judge said. “Are you sure about this testimony?”She’s sure it’s a lie; that much I know. I said the truth would come out, and now I’m going to keep my word.
“Your Honor,” Lana replied. “I’m confessing to a capital offense. Of course I’m sure.”
“But Lana…!” Ema begged. The judge shook his head.
“If this is true,” he said, “then that means Chief Gant has nothing to do with this.”
“That’s what I’ve been telling you from the beginning,” Lana responded.
“Please, Mr. Wright,” Ema insisted. “You’ve got to help her! She’s sacrificing herself because of me…”
Wright looked unsure. Apparently, he was concerned that Lana was being honest.
“She’s not,” Ema said to Wright. “I know my own sister. Whenever she speaks stiffly like that, she’s hiding something inside. Deep down, she’s really screaming in agony!”
The judge banged his gavel. “The defense may now begin its cross-examination,” he said.
“You say you did this all by yourself?” Wright asked.
“Yes,” Lana replied.
“Would you mind telling us what you found when you arrived at the crime scene?” Miles requested.
Lana paused for a moment. The memory was no doubt causing her pain as she brought it back to the surface. “It seems I was the first person to discover the scene,” she stated. “The broken prosecutor award knife was stuck in the victim’s body.”
Wright slammed his desk. “What!?” he barked. “But Prosecutor Marshall died from an unfortunate ‘accident’!”
“That’s only a situation you dreamed was ‘possible.’ The reality is, it wasn’t my sister who took the prosecutor’s life! Fantasize all you want, Mr. Wright, but I’ll never change this statement!”
“You mean,” Miles pressed, “Prosecutor Marshall wound up being killed by Darke?”
“Something like that…”
“If that is so, what happened to the other murder weapon? Darke was carrying a switchblade knife.”
“Oh, that was lying on the floor a little distance away. It was probably knocked away in the struggle.”Your love for your sister is truly touching, Lana, but that will not change what happened.
“All just to protect me…” Ema commented.
The judge banged his gavel. “So when you found the scene like this,” he started, “what did you do? After all, this is what everything boils down to!”
“Yes…” Lana replied. “I broke off the tip of Darke’s knife, planted it inside the wound, then moved the body.”
“Hold it!” Wright shouted. “You planted the tip of Darke’s knife in the victim’s wound?”
“And then you moved the body?” the judge added.
Miles struck his desk. “But why!?” he demanded. “Why would you do that…?”
“You of all people should know, Edgeworth,” Lana answered. “You’ve always had a good head on your shoulders.”In other words, to protect Ema.
“When you showed up on the scene, where exactly was the victim’s body?” Wright asked.
“It was where you deduced it was—by Chief Gant’s desk,” Lana responded.
“But the body was found by your desk,” Miles stated. “Why did you move it there?”
“The reason for that is simple…”
The judge banged his gavel. “Let’s have the witness explain this in more detail. The reason Ms. Skye moved the body!”
“The pieces of the jar that shattered during the events threatened my plan.”
“Objection!” Wright yelled. “Ms. Skye, I understand how you feel. You committed that ‘crime’ two years ago to protect your sister.”
“You mean the forgery at the scene where Neil Marshall was murdered?” the judge confirmed.
“If that truth were to be exposed now, the past two years of your life…” He paused to hit his desk. “will have been useless. Even so, I am compelled to bring to everyone’s attention a significant contradiction within your testimony!”
“A contradiction… in my testimony?” Lana asked.
“You testified, and I quote, ‘The pieces of the jar that shattered during the events threatened my plan.’”
“Do you have a problem with that?” the judge asked.
“It’s a simple oversight, really,” Wright said. “You see, a message was written on this jar with the victim’s blood.”
“Yes,” Lana agreed. “The prosecutor must have written it in his final moments.”
“Exactly so. And this is where the contradiction lies. In order for the victim to be able to write his message on the jar, it must not yet have been broken before he died!”
Wright banged on his desk. “He couldn’t have written Ema’s name on a shattered jar!”
The gallery started muttering. The judge banged his gavel to quiet them down.
“Order! Order!” he yelled.
“Your Honor,” Miles said. “It would appear more information is needed in regard to this jar, and its bloody message! We may be missing something critical here! Chief Prosecutor. It seems you’re as in the dark as we are… about the truth towards which we’re headed.”
“What…?” Lana replied.
“Just tell us exactly what you saw. We’ll piece together the information to arrive at the truth.”
“The judge pounded his gavel. “Very well!” he said. “The witness may now continue her testimony!”
“I immediately noticed the blood traces on the jar,” Lana testified, “but it was dark in the room and I didn’t have time to check it out. To be safe, I wiped away the blood. The fragments were large, so I’m sure I got them all. All I could think about was wiping them clean before they were discovered.”
“You mean you were the one who wiped away this message in blood!?”
“I wasn’t Chief Prosecutor at the time.”
“She didn’t think Darke was the real murderer,” Ema said. “That’s why she tried to erase the ‘real evidence.’”
The judge banged his gavel. “Very well,” he said. “The defense may now begin its cross-examination.”
“Ms. Skye,” Wright called. “I believe this jar conceals a truth even you were unaware of.”
“What?” Lana replied.
“We found the final piece of this jar in Chief Gant’s safe.”
“In the Chief’s safe? But how…?”Now it makes sense… Gant was there before Lana… which means he must have altered the crime scene!
“There’s something even more disturbing about that final piece:” Wright continued. “There was still blood on it.”
“But the witness just testified…” the judge said, “that she gathered every last piece and wiped the blood off of them!”
“Yes, which leaves us with only one explanation.” Wright hit his desk. “On the night Prosecutor Marshall was murdered… you were not the first one to show up on the scene! Chief Gant got there before you!”
The gallery started murmuring. The judge pounded his gavel repeatedly.
“But couldn’t the defendant have simply missed a piece?” he suggested.
“Objection!” Wright yelled, striking his desk again. “I’m afraid that’s unlikely. The pieces are too big for anyone to miss, let alone an ace detective!”
“That may well be, but everyone makes mistakes. Even I once wasted an entire day looking for my dentures. They were in my mouth all along! Ha! Can you believe that!?”
“Objection!” Miles barked, pounding on his desk. “Have you forgotten, Your Honor? When this witness arrived at the scene, the jar was already broken.”
“There’s no way a name could have been written on a shattered jar. Another person discovered the scene prior to the witness!”
“I hope you’re not implying this ‘person’ was Chief Gant. At the time, he was looking for Darke downstairs. Besides, even if he was there first, why would he break the jar?”
“Objection!” Wright shouted, banging on his desk. “The question is, if he did arrive there first, why did he hide that fact for two years!?” Wright slammed his desk again. “Well, Your Honor? Can you answer us that!?”
“Nnnnn… NNNNGHAAAAAAA! Noooooooooooo!”
The gallery began murmuring.
“Wait, I’m not the one on trial here!”
“Damon Gant arrived at the scene prior to the witness,” Miles confirmed. “He proceeded to break the jar, and purposefully hid one of the broken pieces. Question: What is this action called?”
“Fabrication…” Wright answered.
“B-but why would Chief Gant do that!?” the judge cried.
“In light of what happened afterwards, isn’t it clear?” Miles replied.
“What happened afterwards…?”
“Discovering the scene, Lana Skye believed her sister Ema killed the victim. Determined to help her sister, she sought Gant’s aid. Lending her his ‘aid,’ Gant helped her create evidence that incriminated Darke, sparing Ema. And here is the reason! The reason why Ms. Skye became the Chief’s puppet!”
Lana bit her thumb. Miles saw a small amount of blood spray from it. “N-no…” she stammered. “I… I did it on my own…”
“Please, Sis!” Ema cried. “Stop trying to protect the Chief! I… I can’t watch you suffer any more for my sake…”
“No, you didn’t!” Lana shouted to Ema. “It wasn’t you, Ema! You didn’t kill anyone! Don’t believe anything Mr. Wright says! Defense attorneys make up the most foul lies to defend their clients!”
“‘Foul lies’…?” Wright repeated, hunched over in a cold sweat.
“Hmm…” the judge mumbled. “I guess you do seem the type who likes to twist the truth.”
Wright suddenly regained his composure. Something appeared to occur to him.
“Is something wrong, Mr. Wright?” the judge asked.
“Lana… may be right after all,” Wright said.
“What do you mean, Wright?” Miles demanded.
“So you do tell foul lies then, Mr. Wright?” Ema asked, completely missing the point.
Wright hit his desk. “Ms. Skye!” he called. “Please testify once more!”
“But…” Lana started.
“If evidence was ‘fabricated’ behind your back… then Ema’s accidental killing of Prosecutor Marshall… might also be a lie!”
“B-but,” Ema stuttered, “I do remember knocking over Mr. Marshall…”
“Ms. Skye! If you will!”
“I… I can’t…” Lana whimpered.
“There’s nothing to be afraid of anymore,” Miles reassured her. “This cross-examination may not change a thing.” He struck his desk. “However, there is a possibility that it will, if you tell the truth!”
Lana was silent for a moment. “Very well,” she finally said. “I’ll testify… about what I really saw.”
The judge banged his gavel. “All right,” he said. “The witness may testify once more, for the final time!”
“When I arrived, I found Mr. Marshall’s body impaled on that suit of armor’s sword. Ema and Darke were lying unconscious on the floor nearby. When I saw what had happened, I thought she… did it. That’s why I erased all the evidence that linked her to the murder. I had Chief Gant help me remove the body from the sword and carry it… But if it all really was a fabrication, Ema might be innocent!”Finally… Thank you, Lana.
“Unbelievable!” the judge exclaimed. “The body was impaled on the armor’s sword?”
“You were the only one who saw that,” Miles said, disappointed. “If only you had proof…”
“Actually,” Lana said after a pause, “I do have proof.”You do!?
“I gave it to Mr. Wright just this morning,” she continued.
“What?” Wright asked. “To me!?”
“It’s a picture I took of the crime scene as I encountered it. I thought it might be needed.”
“But I don’t remember receiving a picture like that…”
“Lana must have known…” Ema said. “See, Mr. Wright? She really does have faith in you!”
The judge banged his gavel. “Very well, Mr. Wright,” he said. “Please present this ‘picture’!”
“Lana said she gave it to you this morning, right?”
“I seem to remember getting something from her then…” Wright recalled.
“Let’s check that evidence again!” Ema said. “There must be a picture in there somewhere!”
Wright took out the book he had received and opened it. He flipped through the pages. When he reached the end, he saw something and took it out: a photograph.Ingenious…
“Hey…” Wright said. “There’s a picture here!”
“Oh…” Ema gasped. “Oh my… This is… the actual crime scene…!”
“No other detective saw the crime scene like this,” Lana explained. “That’s because I contacted Criminal Affairs only after I rearranged the scene.”
Ema gasped after another look at the picture. “Mr. Wright! That piece cut out from his vest! Could that be… That cloth… It had fingerprints on it! Whosever fingerprints those are must be the real murderer!”
Wright suddenly began sweating.
Miles struck his desk. “Anyway,” he said, “let’s get on with the cross-examination. So long as you tell the truth, we should be able to flush out the real murderer.”
“The judge banged his gavel. “Very well,” he said. The defense may now begin its cross-examination.”
“Hold it!” Gant’s voice bellowed. Gant walked up to the stand. Lana stepped aside. “Come now, Udgey. This is the poorest excuse for a trial I’ve ever seen!”Come back to accept your fate, have you? And here I was thinking you didn’t have a heart for my sword to pierce…
“Chief Gant…” the judge said.
“What, now you want to make me out as the bad guy too? If so, I’d like to put in a word or two in my defense.”
“Objection!” Miles shouted. “I’m afraid it’s too late for that.”
“You already declined testimony. That means you forfeited your right to make statements of any sort.”
Gant just stood there, as though the words had not sunk in.
“Just sit back, relax…” Miles continued, “and enjoy the sound of the noose tightening around your own neck.”
“GGGCCKCKCCKKKK…!” Gant snarled. After a moment, he regained his composure. “Ah, so what? You think I’m worried?”So what else do you have up your sleeve, Gant?
“Sorry to disappoint you,” Gant continued, “but I don’t need to make any statements.”
“What do you mean?” Miles asked.
“The evidence will do all the talking for me. Even if I can’t testify, I can still present evidence.”
“Yes, that’s true…” the judge agreed. “Wait! You mean… you still have some conclusive evidence?”
“No, I don’t. But someone does.”
“So then… what’s your excuse Wrighto?”He’s asking for evidence? Wright, I’ve lured you into enough traps to know one when I see it.
“Why have you been keeping quiet about it?” Gant asked. “You do have something to show us, right? Something that proves who knocked over Neil Marshall, causing his death. Conclusive evidence, that leaves no room for doubt!”It’s definitely a trap. If he thought that evidence was a threat, he wouldn’t ask for it.
“I-is this true, Mr. Wright!?” the judge asked.
Wright didn’t respond. The judge banged his gavel.
“Mr. Wright!” he snapped. “If you have any more evidence, present it now! And if you try to conceal anything… you will be the one appearing before the Board of Inquiries!”
“Your Honor, I don’t have any evidence I can present at this point in time,” Wright said.
“What!?” Gant roared. “You lie!”
“Chief Gant?” the judge asked.
“You… you opened my safe! I know you took what was inside! The conclusive evidence!”Hah! We have you now, Gant. You just admitted to concealing evidence. From here, we just have to wait for you to bleed to death.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Wright taunted.
“Mr. Wright!” Ema snapped. “Why don’t you show them? We found it together!”
“Oh, I see,” Gant said. “It’s because you know the truth, don’t you? You know whose fingerprints are on it. That’s why you won’t present it!”
Miles struck his desk. “What are you talking about, Chief Gant!?”
“Can’t you figure it out? Take a good look at this picture. See the victim’s vest? Notice anything odd about the chest area?”
“It looks like part of it’s been cut off for some reason,” the judge said.
“You mean, you had this…? In your safe?”
“What!? That means you… the Chief of Police… concealing evidence! This is going to be the biggest scandal in the history of the Police Department!!!”
The gallery was in an uproar.
“Impressive…” Gant sneered. “To be honest, I didn’t think you had the gall, Wrighto. Well, I can’t just let you pin me up as the murderer. I’ll tell you what really happened.”
“What!?” the judge barked. “You mean you admit to it!?”
“I was the first person to arrive at the crime scene that day. It then occurred to me that I could use the situation to control Lana.”
“So you really were manipulating her!” Ema yelled.
“I knew Lana. If I made it look like the blame lay with her sister… that when she saw the scene, she would ask me for my aid.”
“So you ‘assisted’ Ms. Skye!” Miles growled.
“I told her to arrange all the evidence. I had her plant the knife tip in the victim’s body, and move the body across the room.”
“And I ended up using that evidence to get Joe Darke convicted!”
“When we rearranged the crime scene, I hid two pieces of evidence. I did this before Lana arrived at the scene.”
“Two pieces of evidence…” Wright said. “You mean those items in your safe!”
“But... why?” the judge asked.
“For insurance, of course,” Gant answered.
“‘Insurance’…?” Wright repeated.
“I was sure my plan would work, but it’s always best to be prepared for the worst. I wasn’t about to let anyone blame me for a murder that girl committed.”
“You mean you were calculating that far ahead while forging the evidence!?” the judge snapped.
“Who do you take me for, a fool? I didn’t make police chief by dumb luck. See this jar fragment?” He pointed to the part of the jar that Lana had not wiped off. “I hid the most legible part of Ema’s name. I didn’t expect Lana to go and wipe the blood off all the pieces.”
“Objection!” Miles yelled, striking his desk. “But if you fabricated all the evidence… what’s to say you didn’t fabricate the message on this jar, too?”
“Ho ho ho… Some people just don’t know when to quit, do they?”I believe that’s my line.
“That’s why I kept one more item for ‘insurance,” Gant continued.
“You mean that piece of cloth?” Miles asked.
“Come on, Wrighto,” Gant taunted. “Cough it up, already. I know you have it.”
Wright was silent.
“What are you waiting for, Mr. Wright?” Ema asked.
“So you admit to it then, Chief Gant? That you were hiding the cloth you cut off the victim’s vest in your safe?”
“Yes, I admit it,” Gant answered. “I didn’t want to have to do that, being Chief and all, but it’s a lot better than being portrayed as a murderer!”
The judge banged his gavel. “Well, Mr. Wright?” he asked. “What do you have to say for yourself? Just a moment ago, you said you didn’t have any evidence you could present.”
“Foolish move, Wrighto. You should have shown it then before it was too late.”Its relevance hadn’t been established at that point, Gant. But now it’s relevant.
“Your Honor,” Wright said, “I do have evidence to present now.”
The judge banged his gavel. “All right then,” he said, “let’s see this ‘conclusive’ evidence! The evidence that shows who murdered Prosecutor Marshall!”
Wright banged on his desk. “Let me verify this once more. On the day of the crime, you personally cut out this piece of the victim’s vest?” He held up a strip of cloth with a handprint on it.
“Oh, yes!” Gant replied, clapping. “At last you’ve finally brought it out into the open.”
“There’s a handprint on this piece of cloth!” the judge commented.
Miles hit his desk. “Your Honor!” he called. “The prosecution requests that be immediately sent to the lab for analysis! This handprint on the leather… There must have been a strong impact for it to be left so clearly!”
“It could not have been forged. It must be authentic, conclusive evidence!”
The gallery started yammering.
“Ho ho ho…” Gant chuckled. “You’re as slow on the uptake as ever, Worthy!”
“What?” Miles spat.
“Think about it. Wrighto had all this time to present this evidence… Yet he was reluctant to do so. Why would that be?”
“You mean you already know?” Miles asked Wright. “You know whose fingerprints are on that?”
“M-Mr. Wright…” Ema exclaimed. “Do you really know?”
The judge banged his gavel. “Whoever the fingerprints belong to must be the real murderer!” he said. “Whose fingerprints are they!?”
“Very well,” Wright said. “I’ll tell you. The person whom these fingerprints belong to is… Ema Skye.”
“Ema? Ema Skye!?”What!?
“What!?” Ema yelped. “They’re mine…!?”
“I’m sorry, Ema…” Wright said.
“But why… Why didn’t you tell me!?”
The gallery was in an uproar. The judge banged his gavel repeatedly.
“Oh ho ho ho!” Gant guffawed. “You’re really something, Wrighto! You knew this girl did it all along, and you still tried to pin the murder on me!”
“So it’s true,” the judge admitted. “Tragic, but true. This girl really did shove Prosecutor Marshall to his death.”
“Hold it!” Lana shouted. “How could you!? You… you monster!!!”
“You knew whose fingerprints those were all along, yet you… you acted like she really didn’t…”Wright… I sorely overestimated you.
“Ms. Skye,” Wright said. “It’s not over yet…”
“What!?” Lana asked.
“I said this trial isn’t over yet.”
“Ha! But I’m afraid it is over, boy! Not only this trial… but your career too!”What do you mean by ‘not over yet,’ Wright?
“You purposely concealed this conclusive evidence,” Gant continued. “That, my friend, is a serious offense. I’m looking forward to pressing charges after the defendant is convicted. I’ll have your badge, boy!”Wait… If Wright was just fighting for a verdict, he wouldn’t have ever shown that cloth. That means there’s got to be something else.
“What’s the matter,” Gant taunted, “cat got your tongue? Aren’t you going to tell us how it feels? How it feels to be the one who single-handedly turned a poor little girl into a murderer!?”
“Before I do that…” Wright said, “there’s just one little thing I have to clear up.”
“Oh? And what’s that?”
“Who really killed Prosecutor Neil Marshall.”
“What!?” the judge barked.
“Chief Gant, you are absolutely right. This piece of cloth proves who the real murderer is. Who killed Neil Marshall, you ask?”
“It was Ema Skye, wasn’t it?”
“I’m afraid that’s not possible.”How is it not possible?
“You see,” Wright continued, “this piece of cloth contains a critical contradiction!”
“What!?” Gant roared. “A contradiction!? What is this fool babbling about!?”That glare… He knows something, too…
Wright hit his desk. “I’m talking about a contradiction,” he said. “One that proves… who the real killer is!”
The gallery started murmuring. The judge banged his gavel.
“M-Mr. Wright!” he yelled. “This piece of cloth… What could it possibly contradict!?”
“Behold!” Wright shouted. “The piece of evidence that contradicts this cloth!” Wright held up Lana’s photograph. “Take that!”
“And what exactly is this supposed to be…?” Gant growled.
“This is the picture Ms. Skye took. Take a good look at it. See where the piece of his vest was cut out?”
“Yes…” the judge said. “His shirt is showing underneath. It’s hard to make out with all the blood on his vest, though.”That’s it! That means that cloth was cut out before Marshall… But that means… GANT!
“Exactly my point,” Wright stated. “His chest is soaked with blood. That’s only natural. His lungs no doubt were punctured. Blood poured out of his mouth.”
“Oh!” the judge exclaimed, apparently catching on. “But that piece of cloth… Wait… There’s no blood on it!”
“AAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!” Gant screamed.
“Since Ema Skye’s fingerprints are on this cloth,” Wright said, “there’s no doubt that she shoved the prosecutor aside!” He pounded on his desk. “However! Mr. Marshall was not impaled on the sword!”
“No! Th-this is nonsense!”
“Now then, Chief Gant. Let me ask you something. Prosecutor Marshall was not impaled when he was shoved aside.”
“He most likely hit his head on the ground and was knocked out,” Miles said.
“If so, then tell me. Who could it have been? Who could have arrived at the scene before Ms. Skye, picked up the unconscious prosecutor, and impaled him on the armor’s sword?”
“Hnnngngghgghh…” Gant growled.
“Then,” Miles added, “to make it look like Ema was responsible for the prosecutor’s death, said person proceeded to write her name on the jar with the victim’s blood. Then he broke the jar on purpose, to leave behind a clue,” He struck his desk. “and make Lana believe her sister did it!”
“Remember what you admitted only moments ago?” Wright asked. “That you personally cut out this bloodless piece of the victim’s vest? Ironic, isn’t it? Through the very act of creating ‘insurance,’ you proved that you were the actual murderer!”
“NNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!” Gant howled.At last… Gant… Hell’s too good for you.
“Objection!” Gant roared.What!?
“Heh…” he chuckled. “Heh heh heh! Oh ho ho ho ho ho! That was close, Wrighto! You almost had me! Sorry, but you’ll have to do better than that. I refute your allegations.”
“What do you mean, you ‘refute’ his allegations?” the judge asked.
“You see, that piece of cloth… is illegal evidence!”
The gallery jeered at Gant. Clearly, everyone believed he was the killer. The judge banged his gavel.
“Order! Order!” he bellowed. “What nonsense is this!?”
“Illegal evidence cannot be used to convict a suspect!” Gant explained. “Remember, Udgey! Earlier, ol’ Wrighto here concealed that piece of cloth!”
“Well, that’s true… The defense did refuse to present evidence!”
“At that moment, that piece of cloth ceased to be ‘legal evidence’!”
“But that’s not fair…!” Ema cried.
“Hoo hoo hoo hooooo! Did you actually think you could best me in court? It looks like the last laugh’s on you, son!”Your wound is still bleeding, Gant. We have yet to remove our blade.
The gallery’s jeers, which had only temporarily been silenced earlier, reached troublesome levels again. The judge banged his gavel.
“I’m afraid Mr. Gant’s claim is legally correct,” he admitted. “Well, Mr. Edgeworth?”
“True…” Miles agreed. “Illegal evidence cannot be used to convict a person… assuming, of course, that the evidence is indeed illegal.”
“Hmm? Well, Mr. Wright?”Hopefully, he caught the hint.
“Mr. Wright,” the judge said again. “Do you admit to it? That you purposefully and illegally concealed this piece of cloth?”
“Certainly, I refused to present evidence at one point,” Wright stated.
“Aha!” Gant laughed. “So the evidence is illegal!”
“Objection! No it isn’t, Mr. Gant.”
“It’s not that I ‘didn’t’ present evidence then… it’s that I ‘couldn’t.’”
“What do you mean, you ‘couldn’t’?” the judge asked.
Wright pounded on his desk. “There are certain procedures involved when presenting evidence!”
“No, Udgey!” Gant cried. “Don’t listen to his lies! He’s nothing but a coward! You can’t let him!”
“Objection!” Miles roared. “Nothing but a coward?” That’s you, Gant. And you’ve slipped through your last loophole.
“There is only one issue left to be resolved in this trial: Is this evidence legal or not?”
The judge banged his gavel. “Very well,” he said. “Let us settle this once and for all. Earlier you refused to present evidence. If you can prove your conduct was not in violation of the law, then do so now!”
Wright slammed his desk. “This is my proof, Your Honor,” he answered. “‘Evidence Law.’”
“What’s this?” Gant growled.
“I’ve done my homework too, Chief. Indeed, Ema Skye’s fingerprints were on this piece of cloth.” He struck his desk. “However! At that point in time, this was merely a piece of cloth, nothing more.”
“You see, it’s written right here in this book: The second rule of evidence law!”I think we’ll twist the blade around in your wound before removing it.
“Rule 1: no evidence shall be shown without the approval of the Police Department!” Miles said.
“I found this piece of evidence myself… inside your safe,” Wright said. “It goes without saying I did not have approval from the Police Department.”
“Rule 2: unregistered evidence presented must be relevant to the cast in trial.”
“And here is the crux of the matter. You see, at the time it was impossible for me to prove the relevance between the cloth and the SL-9 Incident.”
“What!?” Gant exploded. “What kind of nonsense is this!? You want ‘relevancy’? Just take one look at this picture and—”
“Objection!” Wright pounded on his desk. “Sorry, but can you recall… when was that picture presented?”
“That was shown only a few moments ago!” the judge recalled.
“No…” Gant moaned.
“He’s right,” Miles said. “At the beginning of today’s trial, that piece of cloth was still meaningless.”
“The person who gave it value as evidence…” Wright added, “was you, Damon Gant.”
“You yourself confessed to a certain ‘truth.’”
“NNNNOOOOO!!!” Gant cried.
“It was then that you approved this cloth… as conclusive evidence.” Miles struck his desk. “Yes! You, the Chief of Police, personally approved this cloth!”
“The only person who could have cut this from the victim’s vest…” Wright said, “is the one who stood before Prosecutor Marshall in his final moments. In other words, the real murderer! And there’s only one person who that could be…” Wright pounded on his desk, then pointed at Gant. “Damon Gant, the killer was you!”
“N…” Gant groaned. “N… Mmph.” He then began clapping repeatedly and laughing like a maniac, his head thrown back and his mouth open wide. “I knew I should have gotten rid of him… That good-for-nothing scum! For two years he’s been snooping around the department trying to get something on me! Crimes are being committed everyday, yet he insisted on hounding me!”
“Well, your crime wasn’t exactly petty,” Miles said.
“He wanted to reinvestigate the case. He recruited Angel Starr, then convinced Brusce Goodman…”
“Detective Goodman?” Wright asked.
“Yeah, that’s right. Goodman turned him down, as he ought to. Still, Jake Marshall didn’t know when to quit.”
“He stole Goodman’s ID card and tried to steal the evidence!” Miles recalled.
“Goodman came to me that day. He wanted to file a lost item report. I went with him to the evidence room. Then all of a sudden he had to speak out! ‘What are you talking about, Goodman?’ ‘Can you please reopen the investigation, Chief? We can’t transfer the evidence out. There are too many questions left unanswered!’ He… told me to open up the evidence room and take it out. ‘It’s not too late. I’ll hand this to Marshall!’ Well, to be honest, I was a little panicked too. I had a bad feeling about it, but never knew it would come to this. That’s when I saw it… that accursed knife. I couldn’t just pull it out.”
“You would only increase the amount of blood and you couldn’t finish what you started.”
“Even so, the blood was just pouring out. I didn’t know who might stumble in, so I was wiping it up. I was worrying so much about the floor, I didn’t realize my mistake.”
“Detective Gumshoe’s bloody handprint…” Wright said.
“I used to be known as the ‘crime computer’… But everyone has to start somewhere I guess. I was too nervous. I had no business doing any of it.”
“Then you put the body in my car?” Miles asked.
“I’m sorry! We couldn’t think of any other way to move the body. We broke the trunk, but what’s the big deal? You pull down a lot more than us detectives!”
“Grr…” That car cost more than a year’s salary!
Wright struck his desk. “W-what does this have to do with anything? You’re horrible! How could you get Ms. Skye involved in all of this!?”
“Well, she had as much to lose as I did if the truth came out.”No, she just thought she did.
“So you took the evidence from Detective Goodman’s locker?” Miles asked.
“I feel bad for having to do it,” Gant said. “I couldn’t sit around and pick and choose what to take.”
“Well…” Wright recalled, “you left the jar fragment and gloves.”
“Yeah… It looks like I was better off being an investigator of crimes than a committer. They all did their best to get in my way… I’ve got to hand it to them, they do their jobs well… much to my dismay.”
“Fake evidence doesn’t hold up very well upon close examination,” Miles said. “You must have known that…”
“Tell me, Worthy. What are you doing in court?”
“Me?” Trust me; I intend to take a long vacation.
“You despise criminals. I can feel it. You and me… we’re the same.”Do not compare yourself to me, Gant. I’m no criminal.
“One day you’ll understand,” Gant continued. “If you want to take them on alone… you’ll figure out what’s needed!”I’ll find a way around it, Gant. I’m not a von Karma.
“Well,” Gant said, “looks like it’s time to say goodbye. Oh, Udgey.”
“Wh-what?” the judge stuttered.
“Looks like we’ll have to cancel that lunch date. Sorry old friend!”
The judge shook his head. When he stopped, his face was serious. “I’m sorry too, Damon Gant. I knew you as you used to be, long ago. You were once a fine investigator, and an example to others on the force. I’m sorry to learn that you are no longer that person.”
“Those days are gone now, Udgey. Thanks for all the memories, though… Don’t worry, you’ll be fine! Now you have Wrighto here… and Worthy. With these two around, you can’t go wrong… You see, if I listen carefully, I can hear it right now… The sound of a new beginning!”
Gant was led off by the bailiff. Lana resumed the stand.
“There are two things I want you to understand,” Wright said.
“Yes?” Lana replied.
“First, your sister never hurt anyone. Second, Damon Gant betrayed you from the beginning. You see, Ms. Skye… you no longer have any reason to keep silent.”
“You’re right. When this trial is over, I’ll tell everything. All that I’ve done these past two years… from the tine I had Gant help me forge evidence, up until today.”
The judge banged his gavel. “So…” he said, “it seems all the questions raised in this trial have been answered.”
“I’m sorry, Ms. Skye…” Wright said. “I couldn’t get you out of all your trouble.”
“My, my,” she said. “What high standards you have… for a rookie.”Sometimes, only a rookie is stupid enough to make the right choice. That’s two favors I owe you, Wright.
“I can see why Mia thought so highly of you,” Lana continued. “Who knows? A few years from now, you just might make it to the top.” She smiled. It was different from the ones he had seen the past two years. Rather than just her mouth and eyes, her entire body shone with the radiance that Miles saw in no one but her.I’ve waited so long to see you smile like that… Svetlana… “Shining one…” Your smile does your name justice.
“I owe you my thanks, Mr. Wright,” Lana said.
“Ms. Skye…” Wright managed to say.
“And to you too, Mr. Edgeworth.”
Miles returned to reality. Court’s still in session. Save the jubilance for later.
“You’ve suffered every bit as much as I have over these past few days,” Lana continued. “Believe me, I know how much of an ordeal it’s been for you.”
“Hmph!” Miles scoffed, trying to avoid getting flustered. “It was nothing.”
“I was worried the pressure might break you. And yet… you rose above it all and guided Mr. Wright to victory. You’ve done well, Mr. Edgeworth.”
“S-stop it! I only did my job!”
Miles thought he saw Lana roll her eyes in amusement.
The judge banged his gavel. “In light of this case…” he said, “it seems a good self-examining is in order for all of us. Ms. Skye.”
“Yes, Your Honor?” Lana replied.
“You are innocent of murder. However… Although the Chief blackmailed you, the fact is you still acted as his accomplice. A trial will be scheduled for these crimes at a later date.”
“Yes. I understand, Your Honor.”
“Is there something amusing about all of this? Why are you smiling?”
“It’s been a long time, Your Honor. A long time since I’ve felt free of these heavy chains…” With those words, Lana left the stand and resumed her place in the defendant’s chair.
“Well, this trial has gone on far too long already,” the judge said. “Regarding the charge of murder, this court finds the defendant, Ms. Lana Skye… not guilty.”
The courtroom erupted into cheers. Silently, Miles cheered as well.
The judge banged his gavel. “That is all,” he said. “The court is adjourned!”
Miles left the prosecutor’s bench. Though he was pleased with the verdict, the trial itself had been Hell. On his own, he would have proven Lana guilty. The thought terrified him. He knew he was unfit to prosecute as things were. There was more to his job than he knew, and if he was ever going to stay in the world of law, he would need to learn just what that was.At the least, I should say goodbye to Lana…
He saw Gumshoe walk into the Defendant Lobby with Lana.What to do… How am I going to handle this…?
“Hope I’m not interrupting anything!” Miles heard Gumshoe say. Gumshoe then muttered something else. Wright said something in response. “You’re doing this on purpose, aren’t you? Making a detective run all around while on duty, and to top it off you call me here… I’ve seen happier people at funerals!” The next part was relatively inaudible.
“Lana!” Miles heard Ema exclaim. The conversation continued.Damn it… Right when I need to say something, I can’t think of anything to say… I suppose it makes sense… All this time that I fought crime, I walked a crooked path. And then Lana sat in the defendant’s chair… and could have died because of my methods… I don’t deserve her…
“…Edgeworth?” Miles heard Lana ask. Wright said something. “Stop hiding and come over here.”
Defeated, Miles walked in. Think of something to say…
“I just came to say…” Miles trailed off. “Congratulations.”
“Thank you,” Lana said, smiling.
“Thank you, Mr. Edgeworth!” Ema exclaimed.
“Right,” Miles said. “Well… I’ll be going now!”
Miles turned around to leave. He felt a hand on his left shoulder.
“Mr. Edgeworth,” Lana said from behind him. “I hope you don’t blame yourself for what happened.”Don’t…
Miles turned to face Lana.
“We were the ones who acted corruptly,” she said, “not you.”That changes nothing. I don’t deserve to prosecute.
“It’s too late for me,” Miles said. “No matter what anyone may say, I realized today that I can’t change my own mistakes!”
“Mr. Edgeworth…” Ema whimpered.
“Not only that, but I don’t even trust myself anymore. Chief Gant was right… I do despise criminals. I planned to dedicate my entire life to fighting them. But in order to fight crime alone, one needs a ‘weapon.’ It’s scary, but I’ve been thinking the same thing for quite some time now.”
“But Edgeworth…” Wright said.
“Who knows? Given enough time, I might have tried to pull something like Chief Gant did. That thought terrifies me. That’s why I can’t continue on as a prosecutor!”
“Edgeworth…” Lana said, a hint of sorrow in her voice. “Don’t you understand? Damon Gant and your mentor, Manfred von Karma… were both the best of the best when it came to fighting crime. But they both made the same mistake. You said, ‘in order to fight crime alone, one needs a “weapon.”’ That may be right, but think back to today’s trial. You weren’t alone.”L… Lana…
“You were working together with Mr. Wright,” Lana continued. “And because of that partnership, you were able to present evidence that otherwise would have gone undiscovered. Isn’t that right, Mr. Wright?”
“Huh?” Wright yelped. “What? Oh, uh… yeah.”
“Come on, Mr. Wright!” Ema exclaimed. “Show him what Lana’s talking about!”
Wright grasped his chin in his right hand. He then apparently got an idea and took out his half of the SL-9 evidence list. “Take that!” he said.
“That’s the picture I drew!” Ema commented.
“Our counterattack began with this. You had one half of the evidence list, and I had the other. Apart, we wouldn’t have been able to completely restore Ema’s picture.”
“That didn’t just happen by ‘chance,’ Edgeworth,” Lana said.Yes… you’re right… But what proof do I have that I’ll always face someone like Wright? I need to find a way to fight crime alone and do so honorably.
“It’s time for me to go,” Miles said.
“Mr. Edgeworth…” Ema said, worried.
“If you’ll excuse me… there are still some loose ends that need wrapping up. Take care, Chief Prosecutor.” Miles turned around to leave.
“Edgeworth!” Wright called. Miles turned around again. “What will you do now?”I don’t know yet, Wright.
“Well, whatever you do,” Wright said, “just remember. What happened in this trial can either make or break you as a prosecutor. In the end, it’s up to you.”
“I know…” Miles replied. “It seems I owe you my thanks too, Wright. But what I face now… is my problem.”
“Edgeworth… I’ll be waiting for you in court.”We’ll see.
Miles turned around and left. To his relief, no one called him back in.
That night, Miles returned to his office for the last time. He sat at his desk and picked up the phone and dialed the Gatewater Hotel’s number. He looked at the bag of tea Lana had given him. That tea had been drunk a while ago, but he had kept the bag to remember the type.
“Gatewater Hotel front desk,” a voice answered.
“Please transfer my call to room service,” Miles said into the receiver.
“Ah, Mr. Edgeworth.”
Miles waited as the room service telephone rang.
“Hello?” the bellboy’s familiar voice said.
“Do you carry…” Miles paused to look at the bag. “Krasnodar tea?”
“Yes, sir. Which grade?”
“One moment, sir. I’ll check.”
Miles waited, drumming his fingers on his desk.
“Yes, sir, we have it,” the bellboy said. “I’ll be over right away with some. It will be ten dollars.”
While waiting for the tea, Miles took a pen and sheet of paper and started writing, often pausing to think.
My beloved Lana,
I have chosen to leave the United States for a while. What you have said to me rings true, but I do not believe I should prosecute again until I know how to do the job right. I cannot be certain that Wright will be my opponent every time. I need to be ready to find the truth no matter who I am facing. It is with that in mind that I am leaving.
Know that this is not the end for either of us. I still love you, but I am unfit to be by your side until I am more sure of myself. You can consider yourself forgiven for the lies you have told me. Though your actions were criminal, your motives were understandable.
I will return one day, and when that day comes, the ring you returned to me will again decorate your finger.
With devoted love,
Miles took the letter and put it in an envelope. You will be the one to know what I have done, Lana. But as for the rest of the world, they will receive a different message.
Miles prepared another sheet of paper.
The door opened. The bellboy from the Gatewater Hotel came in with the tea Miles had ordered. Miles paid him no mind.
“Uh, Mr. Edgeworth?” the bellboy called. “I brought you your tea…”
Miles took out his wallet and handed the bellboy twelve dollars. He then looked back to his paper. The words came to his mind.
“What’s going on?”
Miles simply motioned for the bellboy to leave and wrote down a single sentence:
Prosecutor Miles Edgeworth chooses death.The Miles Edgeworth of the past must die. The new Miles Edgeworth will be everything Lana deserves in a husband, and everything the world deserves in a prosecutor.
Last edited by General Luigi on Sun Feb 01, 2009 5:55 pm, edited 12 times in total.