June 10th, 2:00PM
Phoenix stumbled out of the hotel breathing heavily, feeling shaky from the blow to his head and Sonata’s browbeating. “Phew! I was sweating bullets back there. She’s quite intimidating, for a pony,” he said, finding another bench and sitting down, soaking in the deliciously cool breeze washing over his perspiring face and body.
“I didn’t find her intimidating. I tried to make her smile! How do you think I did?” Pinkie asked expectantly, sitting on the ground beside him.
Phoenix gave her a wan look. “Uh… don’t quit your day job…” he recommended, studying the old-fashioned aspirin bottle Sonata had given him. Deciding she wasn’t likely to be poisoning him, he popped a couple of the pills. To his surprise, they worked almost instantly, his headache disappearing in a matter of seconds, leaving the human lawyer wondering what they were… and what side effects they might have; he had a sudden urge to check behind him to see if he’d sprouted a tail.
“Okay! Wait... what is my day job, anyway? Throwing parties is more of a hobby…” Pinkie said, raising a hoof to her chin as if pondering a deep question, not getting the expression.
Phoenix had given up trying to understand her tangents. As his headache lessened, his irritation with the pink pony ebbed as well; he admitted that despite her antics and the close call with Sonata, she’d been a genuine help to him—she’d not only got him lunch and guided him to the hotel room, she’d found at least two potentially major pieces of evidence, even if he didn’t fully understand the significance of them yet. “You know, Pinkie, you still haven’t told me… how did you manage to miss the trial?” he asked her, rubbing his scalp beneath his hair, feeling the lump from where the book had hit him starting to recede as well.
“I slept in!” she replied brightly, without a hint of shame or regret.
Phoenix fell silent. “That’s it?”
“Is something wrong?” Pinkie asked, hopping up on the bench beside him and giving him another tilt-headed look.
“No, I guess I was just expecting a better reason than that…” he said truthfully, resting on the bench for a moment before deciding on his next move.
To his surprise, she gave him an explanation that made perfect sense. “I have a bad habit of being late; that’s why I don’t plan parties too far in advance. I’ll just be late and miss out the fun! So I just throw them whenever I want!” Pinkie proclaimed, with a huge smile to match her outgoing personality.
Phoenix studied her for a moment, starting to think that perhaps the pink earth pony wasn’t so bad after all. “That says a lot about you… I thought you were a bit annoying at first, but I can see now that you’re just, uh…” the human lawyer paused, trying to find the right words. “A free spirit! Your heart’s definitely in the right place though; you remind me a lot of a girl I know,” he told her with an almost wistful grin, thinking Pinkie and Maya would get along swimmingly.
Her cheeks turned a deeper pink. “Awwwww… thanks Feenie!” she said with a sweet smile, surprising him with an affectionate and unmistakably equine nuzzle of his cheek.
Said cheek warmed at that. Well, at least one pony in this world likes me! he thought, deciding to reach up and chance a scratch of her ears in return. Her eyes widened and then narrowed in pleasure as she felt his hand find the sensitive flesh at the base of her ears, marveling at what he could do with his fingers. Suddenly disinclined to move, she lay down on the bench beside him and rested her head on his leg. Though a little discomfited by that, Phoenix decided to just go with it—if nothing else, he’d finally found a way to keep her quiet for a bit!
They stayed like that for several minutes as Phoenix enjoyed the first real moments of relaxation he’d had in Equestria since arriving, the human lawyer idly running his fingers through her mane hair—it even almost felt like cotton candy!—Pinkie all but melting under his ministrations, humming to herself happily, blue eyes closed. These ponies may not be animals like the horses I know, but they’ve still got the weak spots of one! Phoenix noted, gratified. For her part, Pinkie was in heaven as he expertly worked between her ears, thinking she was going to have to throw him one of her extra-super-duper-special-parties for this!
“So… what do you think happened, Pinkie Pie?” Phoenix asked after another minute had passed, looking up at the sky again and noticing a large cloud positioned to the south of the town, seemingly growing by accretion as smaller ones were pushed into it.
“Hmm?” Pinkie almost sleepily tilted her head up at Phoenix.
“The crime I mean… what do you think really happened?” he clarified, trying to see what was pushing the clouds together. Are those pegasi? he squinted at the small multicolored dots he could just see darting around the main cloud periphery.
“Let me think… OH! OH! OH! I KNOW!” she blurted out, pulling his attention back down.
“Hm?” Phoenix prepared to hear what’s on Pinkie’s mind…
“Maybe… just maybe… Rainbow Dash…” Pinkie paused dramatically, rolling over onto her back but keeping her head on propped on Phoenix’s leg. He stiffened a bit at her pose, mildly relieved her fluffy tail was pushed up between her legs, covering up what might otherwise have been seen.
“Yes…?” Phoenix held his breath, wondering if he was about to regret asking, trying not to look down her belly—personal modesty was apparently an unknown concept in Equestria, he was quickly learning.
“Maybe she has an evil twin sister nopony knows about! Yeah! So there are two Rainbow Dashes! One good and one evil!” Pinkie proclaimed, certain she had it.
Even after all he had seen and heard from her, Phoenix was still struck speechless for a moment. “Double Rainbow Dash?” was all he could say, thinking that he wasn’t certain this world could accommodate two of the cocky pegasi… or two Pinkies, for that matter!
“All the way! That would be so intense!” Pinkie claimed further, splaying her fore and hind legs in excited gestures while still looking up at him from her back.
Phoenix sensed there was little point in trying to reason with her, but tried anyway, deliberately looking away as he spoke. “Don’t you think someone would notice two Rainbow Dashes by now? All those colors, they’d stick out. An evil twin sister nobody knows about doesn’t seem plausible,” he logically analyzed her speculation, though he did find himself amused at a sudden image of an orange-furred version of the cyan pegasus with a mobster-like scar on her face…
She shook her head, her fluffy mane brushing over his lap, giving him a squint-eyed look. “No, Feenie, I think I’m onto something here! We have to find that bad Rainbow Dash before she strikes again! Let’s call her… ‘Wob Niar’!” she declared.
“’Wob Niar’? But that’s just~” Phoenix gave up at that moment, letting out another sigh. Why am I even arguing about this? he wondered, turning his attention to her chin. She fell silent again as her mouth lolled open, all but drooling as he scratched there—she had no idea that could feel so good!
As she leaned her head back further to stretch out her neck and chin for his pleasuring fingers, her slitted eyes suddenly spotted something approaching. “Hey, Feenie! Look there!” Pinkie pointed with a hoof behind her.
“Huh?” Phoenix looked to his left where she was pointing and his jaw dropped open yet again upon seeing a grey pegasus with a blonde mane flying—yes, flying!—towards them.
“Hey! You two! Did you by any chance receive a letter not posted to you?” the newcomer asked, coming to a halt and lighting in front of them, her wings folding to her sides.
Phoenix was doubly surprised—it was the first time he’d actually seen a pegasus fly, and by her… “WHOA! I-I-I-I… EYES!” he exclaimed, seeing her yellow-orange pupils were pointed in two wildly different directions.
“Huh?” The grey pegasus started to hover in place with a forehoof touched to her chin, a confused look on her face.
“Uh… have you seen an optometrist about that?” he suggested weakly, unable to look away.
“Op-tommy-trist?” the gray pegasus repeated, clearly not knowing what the word meant.
“Feenie!” Pinkie elbowed him sharply in the stomach with the knee of her foreleg, a warning note in her voice.
“OOF! O-oh, I mean eye-I mean… uh… m-me no see letter?” Phoenix finally managed to spit out some words.
“That's just great…” the pegasus pony sighed in disappointment, taking on a drooping pose as she hovered.
“What's the matter?” Pinkie sat up and asked her.
She rolled her eyes—sort of. “Some airhead gave an important letter to the wrong pony and I’m trying to track it down…” the grey pegasus replied while Phoenix continued gawking at her, unable to look away. I can’t stop looking into those entrancing eyes… can she see all around her? Maybe she can even see through the very fabric of time and space! he reasoned.
As he stared, she turned his attention to him, lighting on the ground again. “Hey! I know you!” The grey pegasus said, taking a close look at the weird-looking pony… or rather, the person she remembered from the trial.
The human lawyer grinned at that. “Hmph, Guess my reputation precedes me!” Phoenix said with a little boasting in his voice, thinking that given the pegasus mare’s apparent slowness, she’d be impressed by him. “I’m Phoenix Wright, best attorney in the~”
She cut him off before he could finish, rearing up and splaying her wings in excitement. “You’re that big loser lawyer from Rainbow Dashie’s trial!” she teased, causing Phoenix’s jaw to drop open again.
Pinkie jumped up and down in excitement on the bench beside him. “Hey! You’re famous, Feenie! I wish I could have seen you in action!” the pink party pony said, suddenly wishing she hadn’t overslept.
I think the word you’re looking for is ‘infamous’, Phoenix facepalmed, relieved Pinkie hadn’t been there or he feared he really wouldn’t have a single friend in Equestria.
The newcomer didn’t let up. “Remember the part when you didn’t know pegasi can move clouds? Oh, how I laughed and laughed!” the skew-eyed pegasus mare giggled, a goofy and silly look on her face.
Except I wasn’t laughing… the human lawyer cringed, his ears and cheeks burning with remembered embarrassment and humiliation at getting dressed down by The Judge, Twilight, and Trixie in turn. “Look, I was just under-prepared. And in case you haven’t noticed by me not being a pony, I’m not from around here… who are you anyway?” he asked the ditzy-looking pegasus—there really wasn’t another way to describe her, he mentally apologized.
“The name’s Derpy Hooves!” she told him, offering him a hoofbump.
Phoenix was appalled. That’s kind of a cruel name! he thought as he returned the gesture. “Well, Der~”
“Feenie! No! Stop!” Pinkie cut Phoenix off with a hoof over his mouth before he could say anything else. “Uh, give us a second, will you?” she said to Derpy, who didn’t seem to mind.
Phoenix was confused as Pinkie insistently dragged him twenty feet away by his jacket sleeve, leaving him wondering again how in the name of Equestria she could grip something with her hoof? “What's wrong, Pinkie?” Phoenix asked, bending down and whispering when she motioned him to.
“Don’t say her name!” Pinkie warned him, also in a whisper.
Phoenix blinked again. “Huh? Why not?”
“Because she’s really, really, really, REEEAAAALLLLY sensitive about it! Don’t say her name, whatever you do!” she warned him again.
“I think it’s kind of a harsh name, but she seems okay with it. Listen to that upbeat oblivious voice!” he motioned over to Derpy, who was humming a happy little tune to herself.
Pinkie shook her head sharply. “No, no, no, no, no! Just trust me on this one,” she insisted.
Phoenix let out another sigh. He still didn’t understand, but if Pinkie of all ponies was telling him this, he decided there was probably a good reason. “Fine, I don’t see what the big deal is though…” he whispered back before turning back to the grey pegasus mare.
“Okay! We're done!” Pinkie calls out to Derpy.
“Right-O!” Derpy shot back.
“Well, Der~… er… I mean… blonde-maned pony…! What did you think of the trial?” Phoenix asked, as she resumed her hovering, her powers of flight fascinating him anew.
She gave him an odd look, hovering again. “Blonde-maned pony…? Didn’t I tell you my name?” Derpy squinted at Phoenix, almost looking offended.
“Uhh… I… uhh…” he glanced at Pinkie, who gave him another sharp, almost pleading shake of her head.
“Yes?” Derpy awaited his reason…
“Yeeeesssss?” she challenged, now hovering nose-to-nose with him and starting to look angry.
Come on, Phoenix, say something, anything! he told himself. “I… uh, really l-like your mane…?” was all he could come up with.
Her misaligned eyes lit up at the compliment. “Oh really? I did it up all nice this morning!” Derpy tossed her head to flick her mane back and forth, showing off how silky smooth it was…
“Yeah, it really looks… good…” Phoenix agreed quickly, relieved it had actually worked.
Derpy beamed. “Thanks! I’d say something about your hair, but it really just looks like you stood in front of a fan for a long time!” she grinned causing Phoenix’s feelings to sink like a rock
Is this what I get for being nice? he groused, wishing he could find just ONE pony who liked his hair… but that was a forlorn hope, he was only too certain...“I’d like to hear about what you thought of the trial… since apparently you were there?” Phoenix asked her again, suddenly wondering what her multi-bubble cutie mark was supposed to mean.
She nodded. “I was there alright! It was… oh! Hey! I know. I’ll tell you in poem! I’ve been told I’m a really great poet when reciting the mail carrier code.” Derpy claimed.
“What…?” Phoenix raised a very skeptical eyebrow, bracing himself for something very bad…
Derpy flung her mane to the side, cleared her throat and recited a rhyme:
If you want my opinion, you really did suck.
Mister Beard was indecisive and fickle,
Fluttershy seems like she is in quite the pickle.
Little Applebloom heard that first bolt touch the ground,
But why didn’t the second bolt make a sound?
The prosecution’s put-downs were quite rich.
But honestly, she was being a big stuck-up…
“Bravo! That was really good!” Pinkie praised, rearing up and clopping her hooves together appreciatively.
“Thank you! Thank you!” Derpy tossed her head to and fro, like she was accepting acclaim from an adoring audience.
For his part, Phoenix was surprised and genuinely impressed. “Actually, it really wasn’t that bad…” he admitted, finding it a little cutting but an otherwise excellent lyrical summary of the morning’s events. True, the insults were there, but he no longer really minded—he did suck during the trial, and there was no denying it, even to a pony like Derpy. Things will be different tomorrow, he promised himself again.
“I better be off now… I’ll be in deep doo-doo if I don’t find that letter!” the skew-eyed mail mare told them both, flaring her wings and preparing to leave.
“Bye!” Pinkie said to Derpy, waving a hoof at her.
“Bye!” she waved back. “Oh! And by the way, I should warn you two—there’s a nasty unicorn calling ponies terrible names out and about,” Derpy said ominously, sitting back on her haunches with a distressed look like she’d already been on the receiving end of the name-calling.
The human lawyer’s lips tightened at that. I have a feeling that’s our lovely prosecutor… he guessed, not sure what he would do if he encountered Trixie outside the courtroom… or worse, what she might do to him without Twilight’s protection.
She nodded, satisfied. “Just thought I’d warn you. See ya!” Derpy said, flying off to find her misplaced mail.
“So, did you get what you wanted from that hotel?” Pinkie asked as the odd grey pegasus passed out of sight, hopping back up on the bench to place herself more at his standing level.
“Yeah, it should come in handy tomorrow,” Phoenix replied, reviewing the resignation half-letter and list of names that Pinkie had found. “I still wonder why Sonata didn’t have us arrested though…” he pondered, scratching his chin again.
“Maybe she likes you!” Pinkie suggested—he was so funny and so much fun to hang around with, how could anypony NOT like Feenie, the pink party pony wondered, especially given what he could do with his hands and fingers? Wonder how else he could use them…?
“I… highly doubt that; she was shooting daggers at me with her eyes.” Phoenix remembered, suppressing another shiver.
Pinkie’s eyes widened. “Oooo… I must have been looking the other way when that happened! That must have been so cool! I wish I could shoot daggers from my eyes!” she said with a wistful grin.
To his surprise, Phoenix found himself more amused than annoyed by the party pony’s antics now. I think she’s actually kind of growing on me! “It’s a metaphor, Pinkie. But it sort of does look that way… just look at my suit!” Phoenix checked the rip on his underarm, feeling quite depressed about it.
“You’re still upset about that?” Pinkie asked, not understanding why he was making such a big deal out of it.
“Of course I am! This is the only one I have on me! I can’t walk into court with a ripped suit; I’ll look so unprofessional…” Phoenix said, almost mournfully.
“You could just go naked like me…” Pinkie suggested in perfect seriousness, making the human lawyer’s eyes bulge out.
“GAAHH!!! ARE YOU CRAZY!? I’m not gonna show up in court NAKED!” he yelled at Pinkie through bright red cheeks, suddenly reliving a recurring nightmare where he’d done just that… as well as another variation where he made an objection only to realize he’d forgotten his pants.
“Why not? Everypony else does it!” Pinkie noted, wondering why he always wore clothes and suddenly curious about what he looked like under his suit.
“Uh… it’s…” Phoenix had no idea how to explain human nudity taboos, but fortunately, he didn’t have to as Pinkie had another idea.
“Oh! Hey! I know who can fix that for you in a jiffy!” she remembered.
“Well, it’s better than going to court in my birthday suit…” he muttered, still feeling a little freaked over the suggestion. “Okay, then—who can fix this for me?”
“Rarity can!” Pinkie replied immediately.
“’Rarity’?” he repeated, trying to picture the pony that would possess such a name. “I guess we can make a detour to get this repaired. I feel awkward with this hole in my armpit,” Phoenix said, raising his arms and looking over his ‘hole’ of a problem…
“Carousel Boutique is over yonder, Feenie! VROOM VROOM!!!” As Phoenix watched, Pinkie raced off down the street like the Road Runner would out of the old cartoons he had watched as a kid…
“H-HEY! Stop running ahead of me like that!” he called after the speeding pony, just hoping that this ‘Rarity’ really could get his suit patched up before the trial restarted the next day…