Day Two of the trial arrived and we were ready to clear Rusty’s name. “So, you found no evidence of Dalek coding,” I asked Edgeworth.
“Not a lick,” confirmed Edgeworth. “Now, if Elkrandek found anything, I know how to dismiss it.”
“Here’s hoping it works,” I gulped.
“The trial is about to begin,” called the Bailiff.
“Shall we?” offered Edgeworth. We entered the Courtroom, the same witnesses as last time: Hongo, Wyldstyle, Gandalf, Batman, Elphaba, Rusty, Richard, Emily, and myself.
“All rise for the Honorable Judge Legowltor!” announced the Bailiff. We rose as Legowltor sat in his seat.
“Please be seated,” he directed. We sat down and he banged the gavel. “Court will now reconvene for the trial of the Experimental Portal Operator.”
“The Prosecution is ready, Your Honor,” declared Edgeworth.
“The Defense is ready, Your Honor,” answered Elkrandek.
“Last time, the Defense proposed that the witness, Rusty, fell back onto her old Dalek ways and framed the Defendant,” recalled Legowltor. “Today’s proceedings will start there. If the Prosecution could give their opening statement, we will get underway.”
“Your Honor,” began Edgeworth, “it is no secret that Rusty was once a soldier of the Dalek Empire. However, I hardly see a, pardon the phrase, ‘True’ Dalek choosing a humanoid form, since they hold the unquestioned belief in their superiority in all aspects, even genetically. The Prosecution will cheerfully clear this slander on the witness.”
“Defense, your rebuttal?” asked Legowltor.
“It IS true, no Dalek likes the humanoid form,” remarked Elkrandek. “However, those that ARE humanoid Daleks usually have their hatred increased to a dangerous level. In their minds, they were FORCED to adopt such a state. The defense argues that Rusty was acting in such a state.”
“Objection!” called Edgeworth. “Your Honor, this is nothing but vile slander towards the witness!”
“We shall see,” remarked Legowltor.
“Your Honor, I would like to call Rusty to the stand,” suggested Edgeworth.
“Very well,” replied Legowltor. “Rusty, take the stand.” Rusty obeyed.
“Ms. Rusty, could you kindly tell the court a little bit about why you have a humanoid shape?” requested Edgeworth.
“…As I said to you in the lobby earlier today,” gulped Rusty, “you may not believe it.”
“Please, testify on your current genetic circumstances,” insisted Edgeworth. Rusty drew in a deep breath before beginning.
“Before the Vortech Wars, I WAS a Dalek soldier, in the middle of a war with the humans of the Combined Galactic Resistance,” she recalled. “I had led a normal, hate-filled Dalek life until a battle left me adrift in space. Unbeknownst to me, my casing’s power source had cracked and was leaking radiation. During such time, I saw a star being born and deemed it beautiful, concluding that life will always find a way to continue despite the Daleks’ attempts. The Doctor and their companion at the time fixed me and I almost reverted back to basic Dalek programming until the Doctor linked their mind to mine. I saw what the Doctor saw, felt what they felt, and learned why they hated the Daleks so much. In true Dalek fashion, I saw the Daleks as an evil that must be exterminated. After defeating a Dalek task-force, I went off on my own adventures and met with a Cyberman that didn’t have his emotions removed and remembered who he was; Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart. We went on to form a new UNIT, dedicated to keeping the peace throughout the galaxy. We had gotten reports that the Daleks and Cybermen were on a planet in the midst of a cold war. We went to investigate and found the F.N.S wandering around the planet, looking for the Keystone that was discovered to be in the Dalek Emperor’s possession. The Doctor helped out and got us all to Vorton. The Brigadier and I joined Elphaba in operating the Gateway. I was still trundling around in a Dalek’s casing…until one sad day in the F.N.S’ journey. Now, this is where it gets unbelievable. Hiro, possessing a Lambda-class Portal Operator, sabotaged a Star Destroyer under Vader’s command. I went to fix the sabotage, but the radiation penetrated my casing and ravaged my body. I had died, but my soul was preserved in my casing. At the time, I hopped to the nearest data-store under the possession of a Mr. Benjamin Kirby Tennyson; the Omnitrix. Through the Omnitrix, I went to the planet of Primus and used various genetic samples to construct the body you see now. I found a way back to Vorton, revealed myself to the F.N.S, and continued in my efforts to help them stop Vortech.”
“Objection!” Edgeworth finally called when he found his voice. He had his fist on the railing and was steadying himself with it in sheer shock of what he heard. “When you said I wouldn’t believe your testimony, I think you undersold it! You died and came back to life?! How is that possible?!”
“Your Honor, I must agree with the Prosecution’s objection!” supplied Elkrandek. “It is clear the witness is deranged in some fashion!”
“Hold it!” protested Rusty. “Your Honor, there is evidence that my story is true! Check with Azmuth on all available data within the Omnitrix on the day I died! Also, check with the F.N.S, you will find that they gave me a rather moving funeral!”
“Your Honor, the Prosecution already did so,” called Edgeworth, “but still can’t believe it, even though it’s been checked and confirmed.”
“If it’s been checked and confirmed,” replied Legowltor, “I see no reason to dismiss the witness’s testimony. Objection overruled. Besides, there IS precedence for such an incident.”
“…Very well,” sighed Edgeworth.
“The Defense would like to offer an apology for calling the witness deranged,” interjected Elkrandek. “It was clearly disparaging.”
“Apology accepted,” replied Rusty.
“Then, I believe this clears Ms. Rusty’s good name,” declared Legowltor. “Unless there are objections?”
“No objections,” answered Elkrandek.
“No objections,” confirmed Edgeworth.
“Splendid, we can continue with the main topic of these proceedings,” resolved Legowltor.
“The Prosecution would like to call the F.N.S’ doctor to the Stand,” declared Edgeworth. Rusty sat down as Emily took the stand. “State your name and occupation for the Court Record, please,” he directed.
“Emily Saunders,” answered Emily. “Chief Medical Officer for the F.N.S, Freshman at After Academy, and Captain of the FNSS-01, Virginia.”
“A CMO and a Captain at the same time?” spluttered Legowltor.
“I know it’s unorthodox,” replied Emily, “but it’s helped the F.N.S on more than one occasion. Besides, we have a system where someone else takes command of the Virginia if I’m unavailable in some fashion.”
“Well, if the system works, I will not judge, for once,” conceded Legowltor.
“Ms. Saunders, you have, on more than one occasion, interacted with the Defendant, correct?” asked Edgeworth.
“Yes, but I fail to see where you’re going with such a question,” replied Emily. “We’ve ALL interacted with the Defendant at some point in our lives.”
“Tell the court what your interactions entailed,” directed Edgeworth. Emily was still confused, but went ahead.
“They were centered around general maintenance,” she testified. “I know, again, unorthodox, but he IS labeled as a sentient machine under Article 7, Section 5, Paragraph 3 of the Sentience Act. As such, he’s granted the rights of healing without prejudice. Rusty walked me through on his mechanics and operational systems. Before the Defense even goes there, no, I don’t have the skill to plant such an idea in his head!”
“Now you understand why I asked,” smiled Edgeworth. “Your witness.”
“Ms. Saunders,” called Elkrandek, “your last statement was ‘I don’t have the skill to plant such an idea in his head,’ correct?”
“It was,” replied Emily. “Are you suggesting someone in the F.N.S did so?”
“No, I’m suggesting you may have suggested it to my client,” explained Elkrandek. “I propose that you planted the idea so it would seem that you would be innocent in all this!”
“Tell me, if that were true, why would I bother telling the new guys in secret?” asked Emily.
“Wh…wh…WHAAAAT?!” shrieked Elkrandek.
“Your Honor, if I may, I would like to testify on that subject,” offered Emily.
“By all means,” agreed Legowltor. Here comes more testimony.
“The vote results we got said that we wouldn’t tell the new guys,” she began. “That didn’t sit well on my conscience, nor my boyfriend’s, so we told one of the new guys, Deung Moon-kyung, before this adventure was brought to our attention. During the adventure, while the Virginia was on course for 5-U-P-3-R-M-4-R-1-0, I told my Chief Engineer at the time, Liam McIntyre, about what went on.”
“I reiterate the Witness’s question,” called Edgeworth, “if she planted the idea in the Defendant’s processors, why would she tell the newer members behind the F.N.S’ back?”
“Simple!” replied Elkrandek. “The sting of conscience was too great for her!”
“And yet, X-PO faked the results before she decided to tell the new members,” remarked Edgeworth.
“That doesn’t disprove my theory!” answered Elkrandek.
“I’m rather afraid it does,” chuckled Edgeworth as he wagged his finger. “The time at which the idea would have been planted would have proved far too early to enact it now.”
“There IS a way to do it!” challenged Elkrandek. “If I recall, there is a magic user among the team Rusty was a part of!”
“Some sort of time spell?” chuckled Edgeworth. “I’m afraid the person you’re describing would testify otherwise. She happens to be the next Witness. If she could take the Stand, please.” Emily and Elphaba swapped places. “Your name and occupation, if you please,” requested Edgeworth.
“Elphaba Thropp,” replied Elphaba. “Former Ruler and Wicked Witch of the Western Country of the Winkies in the land of Oz and head of the Gateway Operational Team.”
“Ms. Thropp, if you would tell the Court your usage of magic in your day to day operations, it would clear something up,” directed Edgeworth.
“My magic usage is limited, actually,” testified Elphaba. “As many would know, I used to rule the Winkies with an iron fist. The F.N.S and their ally, Kamen Rider Wizard, took Dorothy Gale’s place in dousing me with water. Death brought me back and put me on Vorton. In my world, a full use of magic must lead to the purging of all original desires with the potential to fall to evil, as I did. I was so evil that I became aquaphobic. Water was too pure for my, then, wicked frame that I melted when in contact with the stuff. I came back and learned another path to magic, but it requires that I treat it as a partner, not a slave. I usually experiment with it nowadays. Temporal Magic is rather beyond me at this point in time.”
“Hold it!” called Elkrandek. “Another one who died and came back to life?! What is wrong with Death?! Resurrection was forbidden a long time ago, especially for one so wicked!”
“Objection!” replied Edgeworth. “Elphaba’s resurrection was a necessary one! It was another chance for her and allowed her to live life in a different manner! Besides, you heard her! She’s a member of the team! I hardly see how her past can affect her if she is still trusted to this day!”
“Objection, Your Honor,” insisted Elkrandek, “Elphaba is someone who is known for playing the long game!”
“Perhaps in most universes, yes,” replied Legowltor, “but it is common knowledge that the witness here is a woman who’s long left the Winkies alone and is a valuable ally to the F.N.S. Objection Overruled.”
“Have any more theories,” asked Edgeworth, “or is the Defense grasping at straws? Perhaps you wish to disparage the good name of the next Witness?”
“And who is the next Witness?” quizzed Legowltor.
“A wizard of Middle-Earth,” replied Edgeworth. Elphaba and Gandalf changed places. “Your name and occupation for the Court Record.” Gandalf blew a smoke ring before answering.
“I am Gandalf the Grey,” he introduced, “a member of the Istari and head of the Fellowship of the Ring.”
“Mr. Gandalf, have you ever used magic in an ill manner?” inquired Edgeworth. “For example, have you used it to directly influence anyone?”
“Certainly not!” replied Gandalf hotly. “That is a magic more dark than I wish to use!”
“Then please, explain your relationship with the Defendant,” directed Edgeworth. Gandalf blew another smoke ring before testifying.
“Much like Batman, I had bumped into Megumi’s group during an adventure where I supposedly died in the universe they are most familiar with,” he began. “After Frodo Baggins, a dear friend of mine, was kidnapped by Vortech, I was taken in by X-PO along with the rest of the Feudal Nerd Society to fight Vortech. I had no idea I was part of a larger plan. After defeating Vortech, I returned home and spent two years in the Shire in peace now that Sauron no longer dwells in Middle-Earth. Two years later, I responded to a call to arms by Megumi. However, I had no idea we were manipulated in such a fashion until after our initial return to Vorton from other universes.”
“And not once can you claim using magic on anyone within the group?” asked Edgeworth.
“Not once,” replied Gandalf.
“Objection!” called Elkrandek.
“Mr. Elkrandek, I am getting rather annoyed by your interruptions!” hissed Legowltor.
“Your Honor, forgive my interjection,” apologized Elkrandek, “but there IS something the Prosecution overlooked. In this instance, I must thank Gandalf.”
“Erm, you’re welcome?” quizzed Gandalf.
“Ladies and gentlemen, it is a well-known fact that magic has a trace when used,” explained Elkrandek. “It has been known to affect machinery. I submit that my client was affected by stray magic!”
“Objection!” argued Edgeworth. “Portal Operator robots are powered by maho-engines; a power source that uses magic! It is highly unlikely the Defendant was affected in such a manner!”
“X-PO is an Experimental Portal Operator!” countered Elkrandek. “It’s unlikely that the shielding for any external magic was perfected when he was built! Stray magic must have affected him while Gandalf and Elphaba were using it within Vorton! In all honesty, I’m a little angry I didn’t think of this.”
“It will be my turn to get angry soon!” threatened Gandalf. “If you accuse me of affecting X-PO so irresponsibly again, I shall! Then you will see Gandalf the Grey uncloaked!” The courtroom went dark!
“GANDALF, NO!” I yelped.
“ORDER IN THE COURT!” shouted Legowltor as he banged his gavel.
“Your Honor,” interjected Edgeworth, “I assure you; an examination of any stray magic will determine whether or not X-PO was affected at all.”
“Does the Defense agree?” asked Legowltor.
“The Defense agrees, Your Honor,” answered Elkrandek.
“Then tomorrow’s proceedings will be centered around whether or not it’s possible for X-PO to have acted because he was affected by magic!” declared Legowltor. He banged his gavel. “Court is adjourned!” We filed out of the Courtroom and spoke with Edgeworth.
“Dude, what are you trying to do?!” I yelped.
“Tell me,” quizzed Edgeworth, “have you seen Gandalf or Elphaba use magic so irresponsibly?”
“I haven’t,” I replied, “but that’s hardly my business now, is it?”
“I’m proceeding under the belief,” replied Edgeworth, “that any stray magic would have affected you too. From what I have researched, magic tends to affect organic life-forms quicker than machines.”
“…When are we getting checked out for that?” I asked, understanding where he was going.
“I just need to make some calls,” answered Edgeworth as he got out his cell phone. He dialed a number and spoke with the person on the other end.