Title: Lunch Recess
Fandom: Ace Attorney
Word count: ~800 words
Summary: Franziska von Karma is having a very bad day, but maybe her detective can improve it.
Notes: For the Tumblr vocabulary meme, "lalochezia: the use of abusive language to relieve stress or ease pain."
The coffeeshop Franziska has in mind is a real place in Little Tokyo. If they're at the downtown LA courthouse, Gumshoe really shouldn't bother moving his car.
And I think I'm contradicting my own freaking Rarewomen letter with this one, but hey. It's.. proving a point, or something.
“That fool! That conceited, inconsiderate, cowardly, thoughtless, brainless, foolish fool!” Ms. von Karma went to wrench the courthouse door open before Gumshoe could get ahead of her to open it, and grunted in frustration when it wouldn’t cooperate. Trouble was, those doors were big and heavy and meant to swing slowly besides; they wouldn’t slam open just because Ms. von Karma had to deal with Larry Butz as a witness and Kristoph Gavin as the defense.
“You, uh, you sure showed them who’s boss though, sir!” He probably shouldn’t have spoken up while he was in whip range, but he felt like he had to say something.
He wasn’t expecting her shoulders to actually slump. That was weird. He reached past her for the door handle, and she actually stepped away and let him pull it open, but she didn’t go through.
“‘The lady doth protest too much,’” she said quietly, instead.
“Huh?” That sounded like the kind of thing Prosecutor Edgeworth would say, and it had a ‘doth’ in it so it was probably a quote. Shakespeare or the Bible. “I don’t get it.”
“When that fool tried to imply a romantic liaison between the two of us, and that scheming, devious, arrogant, untrustworthy fop of a defense lawyer suggested that my denials were just further proof — ugh, those fools, those gossiping, ignorant—”
Okay, so she was mad all over again. It kind of figured. Larry Butz had some kind of crush on her or something — either dumb or just into whips, Gumshoe wasn’t sure — and he’d tried to make it sound in court like the two of them were an item. Which wasn’t believable at all, because if nothing else Ms. von Karma was way too smart for a loser like that, but she’d gotten all insulted. And then Mr. Gavin, the defense lawyer one, not the rock star prosecuting one, had acted like it was true and just “not their business,” or “not relevant,” and she’d gotten really upset.
So protesting too much... “Oh, so it’d be like you were only getting upset because it was true, not because it’s not?”
“You—!” The whip caught him on his arm and he yelped. This was why he wore his coat in the middle of August.
“Sorry sorry sorry! I know it’s not true!”
“If so you are the only one who thinks so out of that entire courtroom! Of all the humiliations—” She was stomping off down the block, and he could probably just let her go, but if she wanted him around she’d eventually make sure he’d regret not being around, so he hurried after her. She was muttering to herself in German at this point, so he kept his mouth shut. He wasn’t sure if German was actually a really angry-sounding language, or if he just thought so because he mostly heard it from Ms. von Karma.
She stopped in front of his car, and he dutifully went to unlock and open the door for her. “Um, at least maybe everybody figures you broke up with him after your whip got caught around his neck and he passed out?”
She cracked a smile at that. It was a surprisingly comforting sight, but maybe he was just glad she was looking less whip-minded. “That was gratifying. Thank you for reminding me, Scruffy.”
“Hey, y’know, whatever I can do to help…”
“Next, you will buy me some coffee,” she said. “That ‘friends don’t let friends drink Starbucks’ place.”
“You, for once, have not disappointed. You can afford it this month.”
“Oh, uh, really? Okay, then.” He turned the key in the ignition. “In that case, maybe Eldoon’s will be in the area. I could use something to eat.”
“Oh, man, you’ve never eaten there? We gotta fix that.” There was an odd look on her face. “I mean, uh, if you don’t mind. Sir.”
“No, not at all.” She was smiling as she buckled up. “A date with someone else might help debunk those disgusting rumors, in fact.”
He kind of choked, and she pretended to ignore it, Prosecutor Edgeworth-style. Fancy coffee and a meal, though — yeah, that was a date. He couldn’t think of any reason beyond the whip to try to escape, though. The last time he’d tried to take Maggey out to lunch he’d been hit by a car and she’d dumped him for his own good, so it wasn’t like he had a girlfriend. And Ms. von Karma might be way out of his league, but apparently she thought he was more acceptable as a fake boyfriend than Larry Butz, so, okay. “I guess it’s my treat, then,” he said, philosophically.