|Dahlia Hawthorne||Image Gallery||Sprite Gallery|
|From the day I was born to the day I died, I never helped anyone! I lived for myself and, in the end, I died for myself. I thought that was obvious.|
Dahlia Hawthorne was a student at Ivy University and ex-girlfriend of Phoenix Wright. She appeared as a witness in the murders of her stepsister Valerie Hawthorne, her ex-boyfriend Doug Swallow, and the author Elise Deauxnim.
Morgan Fey, who was to become the head of the Fey clan, married a wealthy jeweler and had two twin daughters with him: Dahlia and Iris. However, Misty Fey, Morgan's younger sister, had more spiritual power than Morgan did, and she became the head instead, making Morgan's bloodline a powerless branch family. The jeweler divorced from his wife, taking their daughters with him. He later remarried to a woman who already had a daughter, Valerie Hawthorne. Finding her twin sister a nuisance, Dahlia convinced her father to give Iris away to the Hazakura Temple. As Dahlia stayed with the Hawthornes, she began to hate her father and plotted against him for his money.
When Dahlia was 14 years old, she pretended to fall in love with Terry Fawles, her tutor, to use him to exact revenge on her father. With Valerie's cooperation, she staged a fake kidnapping by Fawles to get her hands on one of her father's rare jewels. At Dusky Bridge near Hazakura Temple, however, Valerie betrayed Fawles and shot him in the arm, the signal for the "hostage" to jump into Eagle River intentionally with the diamond in her backpack. Fawles was convicted for Dahlia's "murder" and sentenced to death row. Dahlia would become involved in more crimes later in life.
- Main article: Turnabout Beginnings
Five years later, Fawles was being transferred to another prison, but his transport broke down and he escaped. He called Valerie Hawthorne and told her to meet him at Dusky Bridge to explain what had happened. Valerie called Dahlia and told her that she was going to tell the truth about the incident. Fearful of what would result from the meeting, Dahlia stabbed Valerie at Dusky Bridge and then, when Fawles arrived by a stolen car, she hid the body in the trunk of the car and then met Fawles at the bridge, posing as Valerie. Fawles was arrested soon afterward, now accused of a real murder.
During Fawles's trial, Prosecutor Miles Edgeworth prepared Dahlia as a witness named Melissa Foster, who would attempt to convince the court that Fawles was the killer. Mia Fey, the attorney for the defendant, was almost able to prove that Dahlia was the killer, but Fawles refused to cooperate with Fey, poisoning himself and dying on the stand instead. Fey and Edgeworth would later recall that Dahlia left the courtroom with a "demonic smile on her face".
The result of the trial drove Fey and her co-worker, defense attorney Diego Armando, to investigate Dahlia. Dahlia found out and convinced Armando to meet her in the courthouse cafeteria six months later. Fearful that Armando would expose the truth, Dahlia quietly slipped poison into his coffee from her bottle necklace. The poison had been stolen from Doug Swallow, her boyfriend at the time, who was a pharmacology student at Ivy University. Armando was put into a coma from the poisoning, and Dahlia fled the scene.
Minutes later, in the reading room, she stumbled across fellow Ivy University student Phoenix Wright and gave him the necklace as a "love gift" to evade the authorities. Swallow later found out about the stolen poison and broke up with her.
Due to lingering suspicion surrounding her over this incident, Dahlia planned to kill Wright to retake the only remaining evidence that could link her to the poisoning. Iris, fearful for her sister and the path she was taking, begged Dahlia not to go so far, and convinced her not to resort to murder. Instead, Iris lived Dahlia's life at Ivy University in order to protect Dahlia in the event of another encounter with law enforcement.
- Main article: Turnabout Memories
|Do. You. Think. You've. Won? Well!? Do you, Mia Fey? Heh... Heh... Heh... Heheh... That's. Just. Fine!|
Eight months went by and the bottle necklace was not returned to Dahlia. Having failed in the task for all that time, Dahlia suspected that Iris had actually fallen in love with Wright. Without telling her twin sister, Dahlia took matters into her own hands and went back to Ivy University herself in desperation. She attempted to kill Wright by stealing more of Swallow's poison and using it to poison Wright's cold medicine.
However, before her plan could come to fruition, she found Swallow trying to warn Wright about her and the stolen poison. Wright pushed Swallow in a mixture of anger and disbelief, then left the scene. Knowing that Swallow was on to her, Dahlia then permanently silenced Swallow by using power cables to fatally electrocute her former boyfriend, and attempted to frame Wright for his murder.
Unfortunately for Dahlia, Mia Fey had finally decided to return to the courtroom for the first time since Fawles' disastrous trial. The rookie defense attorney took on Wright's case and relished being able to finally expose Dahlia as the killer she was. Dahlia was then convicted and sentenced to death, but she swore that she would someday have her revenge against the woman who had defeated her.
Prison and executionEdit
|Yes. I was hanged. It wasn't exactly... pleasant.|
- Main article: Bridge to the Turnabout
|You're as foolishly optimistic as ever, aren't you... my darling Feenie? Do you want to know the truth? Ever since we met... I've despised you. Your sniveling naïveté and your pathetic faith in other people.|
One month after Dahlia's execution, Diego Armando, who had recently awoken from his coma and taken on the name of Godot, learned of Morgan Fey's plot and contacted both Iris and Morgan's sister Misty Fey in an attempt to stop it. The plan was to have Misty, who arrived at Hazakura Temple under the pen name "Elise Deauxnim", channel Dahlia so that Pearl would not be able to. Godot would then restrain Dahlia and stop her from killing Maya. However, Dahlia attacked Maya at the Inner Temple, which was some distance away from Hazakura Temple. Upon seeing Dahlia's silhouette, Godot was overtaken with a desire for revenge. He picked up Misty's sword-cane and stabbed Dahlia, which killed Misty. Before losing consciousness, Dahlia did manage to wound Godot. Iris was put on trial for Misty's murder and Phoenix Wright, now a defense attorney, took her case.
After channeling and asking her sister Mia for help, Maya used her sister's advice and locked herself in the Inner Temple's icy Training Hall and channeled Dahlia to prevent Pearl, who was unknowing of the entire plot, from channeling Dahlia and consequentially murdering Maya. Later, in an effort to save Maya, Iris was called upon to undo the lock on the training room. Once Iris had undone the lock, an earthquake shook the region, and Dahlia took the distraction as an opportunity to switch with Iris and to lock Iris inside the training room, using five locks. Rescue efforts then continued to save Maya from the Sacred Cavern, though Maya was, in fact, outside, possessed by Dahlia.
During Iris's trial, Dahlia, posing as Iris, claimed that Maya had killed Misty and then had killed herself in her guilt by throwing herself off Dusky Bridge. However, Wright was soon able to figure out who she really was and who was channeling her. Dahlia really thought that Maya had thrown herself off of Dusky Bridge, as the Training Hall had just been opened and only Iris was discovered. Wright then asked who was channeling her at that moment. Dahlia didn't know, but Wright soon revealed that it was Maya.
Mia, being channeled by Pearl, taunted her cousin, mocking her for her string of disastrous murder attempts. Distraught over her failure to kill Maya when she had been so close to her for days, Dahlia left Maya's body, and the judge suggested that her spirit never be channeled again.
Dahlia knew that her beauty and innocent appearance threw others off her true nature and took full advantage of it. She had the ability to make herself appear serene and innocent; she would even occasionally have small butterflies flock about her and flutter gently. However, this aura of innocence was a façade, and when pressed into a corner, her demeanor could change to a terrifying, almost demonic visage which even caused the aforementioned butterflies to burst into flames at one point. In truth, Dahlia looked after and cared about nobody but herself, and even went as far as to state that this had always been the case for her.
Many who have seen Dahlia's true nature, such as Phoenix Wright and Mia Fey, have described her as a demon, and even the judge has suggested that she never be channeled again. Indeed, all of Dahlia's murders and attempted murders were committed to cover up a previous crime or to exact revenge on Mia Fey. She displayed absolutely no remorse or regret for any of the crimes she had committed, and had no qualms about murdering completely innocent people for self-preservation.
In fact, of all the people Wright has encountered, Dahlia was arguably the most dangerous in the sense that she had the most known intended victims, seven in total. Of these, two died by her hand (Valerie Hawthorne and Doug Swallow), one killed himself (Terry Fawles), one was killed by someone else (Mia Fey), and three failed altogether (Phoenix Wright, Diego Armando, and Maya Fey). There was also one unintended victim (Misty Fey), although Dahlia was hardly repentant of this. Despite all this, all of Dahlia's crimes were failures in one way or another, mostly due to the actions of Mia Fey against her.
Dahlia's sister Iris once gave a somewhat different description of her. Having been abandoned by her mother and neglected by her father, Iris felt sorry for Dahlia because Iris at least had Bikini, a fellow nun who acted as a mother-figure, to take care of her. Iris also described Dahlia as "strong" and "smart", never complaining about her situation. She was thankful that neither Dahlia or herself had much spiritual power, so that they couldn't be used by their mother. Iris thus showed some sympathy for her half-sister, Pearl Fey, whom her mother could and did use for her own ambitions.
- "Miyanagi" (美柳) is a name meaning "beauty" and "willow", and is meant to evoke a feeling of tranquility. "Chinami" (ちなみ) may come from the phrase "chi mo namida mo nai" ("without blood or tears"), basically meaning "heartless". It also follows Wright's naming convention, as "chinami ni" means "by the way".
- Her Japanese pseudonym, "Satoko Mukui" (無久井里子), literally means "a vengeful foster child".
- The given name "Dahlia" was inspired by the album Dahlia by X Japan. The nickname "Dollie" is a reference to an unofficial fan translation project for Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials and Tribulations, which was scrapped after an official localization was announced. In the fan translation, she was named Dolores Willow, and her nickname was Dolly.
- The surname "Hawthorne" is a reference to famous author Nathaniel Hawthorne, who wrote Rappaccini's Daughter, a short story in which a man falls in love with a woman who has a strong poison coursing through her veins and can kill anything with a simple touch. Pearl Fey's given name is also a Hawthorne reference.
- Dahlia's fake given name "Melissa" comes from the Greek word "μέλισσα" (melissa) meaning "honey bee", which in turn comes from "μέλι" (meli) meaning "honey". This could be a reference to her apparently sweet demeanour. Alternatively, it may be a play on "malicious".
- Her pseudonym surname "Foster" mimics her Japanese counterpart's name.
- Her French surname "Plantule" means "seedling".
- Since she only appears while alive as a witness, Dahlia's non-spirit sprites are cut off and are not full length, similar to other courtroom-only characters such as Frank Sahwit and Richard Wellington.
- Her appearance, outfit, and the butterflies that circle around her were all designed to give the impression of an "heiress".
- Before the shadowy court record profile in Bridge to the Turnabout is revealed as Dahlia, her gender is left as "?". This is despite the profile itself referring to the character as "daughter", "Iris's twin sister", and "her". Her age is also listed as "???", despite being mentioned as Iris's twin and Iris's age already being known.
- Within the in-universe chronology of the first three games in the Ace Attorney series, Dahlia Hawthorne appears as a witness in both the first (Turnabout Beginnings) and last (Bridge to the Turnabout) cases.
- Dahlia is seen wearing gloves in a flashback to shortly after her murder of Doug Swallow, despite them not being part of her usual outfit. This may have been so that her fingerprints would not get on Wright's bottle of Coldkiller X.