Chapter 12: Chapter 12
Monday, June 3rd
Courtroom No. 2
“Court is now in session.”
“The prosecution… rests. But before we hear the verdict, Mr. Foley wished to be granted a chance to speak before the court,” said Prosecutor Gavin.
The judge nodded. “That sounds alright. Defense, any objections?”
“None, Your Honor.”
“Very well, then. Mr. Foley, you may take the stand.”
As he slowly walked up, his hands were back in their pockets, but Apollo saw that his eyes were red and puffy. He looked straight at Chase and Mr. Key, in turn, as he spoke. “I… wanted to explain.” Chase raised an eyebrow but said nothing. “On the day Clari died, I died, too. And you’re right; none of us have ever fully recovered from that. I tried to do good in her name. I advocated against drunk driving and donated to charities helping people whose lives had been changed by a car crash. It was a rule that if you came to a party of mine, you couldn’t drive home drunk.” The look in his eyes was desperate and searching, but Apollo could hear the pain in his voice.
“And then… she was there. She was so drunk she could barely stand, but she was angry and wanted to drive anyway. I told her not to, and she fought me. I told her she could kill someone, and do you know what she said?” Mr. Foley was shaking in anger, now. “She said, ‘Well, I’ve already killed a couple this way, so one more won’t matter.’ I didn’t know what I was doing until the knife was already in her chest and she was dead.
“I panicked and I got horribly angry with myself. I rinsed the knife and replaced it with the first one I could find, which happened to be on the counter and happened to have Lock’s prints on it.” Ahh, that makes sense. Apollo had wondered why Mr. Foley had framed Mr. Key if they were truly so close. “And then I just… lost control. I felt alien to myself as I punched the security camera and cut myself. I knew I had to clean up the glass -- I guess I got the glass from her martini mixed in -- and I managed to hold myself together until I got to my room, but then I exploded. I screamed and took off my bloody suit and tore it to pieces and threw it in the fireplace. I didn’t know how to deal with what I’d done.” He was still shaking, his arms tense and fists clenched inside the pockets.
“Eventually, I pulled myself together enough to edit the security footage. I actually have a degree in computer science, so it was easy to manipulate. I pretended everything had just been deleted, and that I was ‘recovering the missing data’.” Apollo heard Prosecutor Gavin muttering to himself as Chase scoffed. “Actually, I was carefully watching each piece of footage and making sure it was alright before releasing it. Some things had to be changed. Some things had to be deleted entirely.
“I tried… to get the blame off of you, Lock.” Chase winced. “I tried to frame Tom with the footage, but Mr. Justice saw through it faster than I could make things up. I was deluding myself into thinking I could get away with what I’d done, without facing the consequences.” Mr. Foley grimaced and his eyes began to water again. “I was deluding myself into thinking I could do the same thing she had done. And you’re right, Chase. Clari would never have wanted this for any of us. I’m so sorry that I’ve betrayed the memory of her.”
Chase quietly said, “You know you’ve become something else now. That you’re not a mockingbird anymore.”
“I do.” Mr. Foley looked away at the floor.
“Maybe, with a lot of work, you can become one again someday.”
He looked back up again, and smiled, ever so slightly. “Thank you, Chase. Thank you.”
It was quiet for a long time, everyone’s thoughts on what Mr. Foley had just said.
Finally, the judge slowly announced, “I think it’s time for the verdict, then. This court finds the defendant, Locklan Key, Not Guilty. Court is adjourned.”
Monday, June 3rd
Courtroom Lobby No. 2
Chase noticed the many pieces of confetti stuck in Athena’s hair as she bounded up to Mr. Justice and gave him a very enthusiastic hug, but he only raised an eyebrow and watched as his dad walked up to the pair. “Thank you, Mr. Justice, for everything you’ve done.”
“You’re welcome, Mr. Key.” They smiled at each other and shook hands. “The media and the public is going to be a circus, though, isn’t it?”
“Heh, I’ve taken care of that.”
As Trucy jumped at her dad, Mr. Wright said, “Edgeworth will be making an official statement saying that you are completely innocent, and that you should be left alone.”
His dad raised his eyebrows. “As in, Chief Prosecutor Edgeworth?”
“Well, then thank you as well, Mr. Wright.”
The man smirked -- or was that a smile? “Not a problem at all.”
Once hugs and congratulations had been exchanged all around, and his dad had been officially released from custody, Chase stood there, smiling at everyone. “So… I guess this is it then. I mean, I’ll see you at school, Trucy, but…” Now that things had finally been worked out between them all, he wasn’t really sure he wanted to leave.
“It was great to get to know you, Chase. Difficult,” Athena smirked, there, “but great.”
“Yeah,” he replied. “You too.”
He was about to say goodbye when Trucy, who had been biting her lip for a while, said, “Chase.” He tilted his head in response. “What would you think about… joining the Agency?”
Had he really heard that right? “You want… me? Why?”
She grinned. “Well, I figured the Wright Anything Agency could probably benefit from having an actual musician around. Someone who can play more than ‘Hot Cross Buns’.”
Mr. Wright laughed and said, “Hey, you can’t forget ‘Mary Had a Little Lamb’!”
She laughed, too. “Either way, Chase is definitely better than you ever were, Daddy.” After a few moments, she turned to Athena and Mr. Justice next to her. “Is that alright with you guys? I know I didn’t really ask, but --”
“Definitely!” Athena said.
Apollo looked at her first and raised an eyebrow, but then turned to Chase and smiled at him, really smiled at him, for the first time. “Yeah. That’d be alright.”
Chase felt like floating. He grinned.
“Then I accept. Let’s fly… together.”