Page 21: Don't Fall Prey
"Only one question remains," Watari reminded the group as their little meeting at the hotel continued. Near and Mello nodded in agreement as if they knew exactly what he was talking about. "What were you planning to do?"
L knew there was no use denying it. "To continue on my own so that your safety would be assured. Persy is the one protecting all of us, she's the only one who is in a position to do it. I wanted her to stay with everyone here while I try to find queen Persephone by myself. If it was only me, maybe I could find her, Hades is more interested in keeping Persy from finding her. It would be a good opportunity to investigate."
"But he wouldn't let you return with the information," Persy warned him.
"You were counting on her," you realized.
L confirmed it. "Yes, I was counting on Persy to stop Hades from killing me. I also intended to send all of you in a mission so that Persy will go along and serve as a distraction. It would not stop the shinigami from finding me, but I would no longer be the target of priority."
"Daddy could just end your life!" Persy was quite upset.
"That would upset you and it seems he really doesn't want to get on your bad side. Like I said, you're the one protecting all of us. Hades won't take the risk." L explained.
You blinked; L had all of that figured out. He put all the pieces together in his head. He really was a genius, using nothing but little clues, legends, stories, rumors and supernatural reports that anyone would classify as fiction. No doubt many of them were false; but somehow he was able to distinguish what was based on reality and what was purely fiction. L found the place he was looking for. It all fell into place, but what was the next move to be made?
"It seems you have no intentions of letting me move on my own, even if it's to protect all of you," L concluded and everyone agreed.
"We'll be in this together and I'll protect everyone here. You too (Name), even if in a way we're rivals, I'll help you." Persy looked towards Traizo for a moment.
"I understand, in exchange I won't try to hurt L and I will sincerely try to keep him safe, everyone else as well and (Name) is still my priority," Traizo agreed.
"Then it's settled, all of us are in this together," Near said.
"Right," Mello agreed, if the protagonists of a very odd love triangle, or rather square, could work together, then he could handle working with his brother and rival, Near.
xoxox xox xoxox
Plans and ideas were formulated and the situation was discussed, but as if it wasn't complicated enough as it was; the next day brought even more problems. Kira had returned.
"This can't be," Persy stared at the news reporter on TV in disbelief. A hundred deaths had occurred simultaneously at dawn. "The Death Notes, the shinigami... how?" She had arranged everything herself, before the investigation. This wasn't part of the plan, it wasn't supposed to happen.
"Hades," L had been fearing this. "Since he cannot attack us directly he is taking it out on everyone else. This was my worse worry."
"You lied," Persy realized. "You weren't going to investigate at all. You knew this would happen and you were going to make a deal with father. You wanted to be alone so you could speak to him. Because of me, he wouldn't kill you, but he doesn't want me to find mother so he could use you to keep me away from her."
"Your skills of deduction are quite good, my apologies," L admitted.
"Then it was true!" This was not something you expected to hear from L. "But Why? We were supposed to free Persy's mother!"
"Please understand that Persy is protecting us, but she cannot protect the entire world. As things stand now, every other human in this world is Hades' hostage. I wish I could help Persy, but I can't put so many lives at risk, I'm sorry." L looked like he really was sorry, he had no choice and the situation was making him feel powerless. Usually, L was always one step ahead, but for the first time, he couldn't achieve that. He knew what was going on but there was little he could do. This was more frustration than he had ever dealt with in his entire career as a detective
"You're a traitor! I'll kill you! I can easily get my Death Note back and you know it!" Persy yelled.
"Don't you understand the situation? You're asking for too much!" Mello yelled. Near and Watari decided it was best to remain silent.
The atmosphere had become very tense and filled with anger. Persy was deceived and so were you. Still, you saw L's point; too many lives were in danger. Why couldn't there be a way for everything to work out? It seemed as if L's frustration hung in the air for everyone to feel.
"Hades using Kira as his messenger to us is a turn of events that requires immediate action. In the past, Kira didn't kill this many people at once. I can only conclude that he has protection from Hades, an easy way to find information and some kind of deal. The deal possibly involves not harming us. Persy, would you be willing to go back to the shinigami world?" L already knew what she would say and he knew he couldn't easily change that.
"I don't want to go back and you can't make me! If you want my help there are two things you can do for me. If you do at least one, then I'll see if I can talk to daddy so he stops helping Light. I don't want to leave with nothing!" Persy flew through the roof in anger and frustration, disappearing in the distance of the cloudy skies outside.
"Persy!" You called after her, but it was too late.
"It is very important that we don't lose her. Traizo, you understand right?" L urged.
Traizo nodded. "(Name) could be in danger."
"Exactly, you're the one who can most effectively follow her," L confirmed.
Traizo didn't want to leave you with L, but he had no choice if it was to protect you. "Fine, I'll go look for Persy, but she's stubborn so I don't know how long it'll take me get her to come back. During that time you have to stay away from (Name). Make sure no harm comes to her, but don't get too close."
"I understand," L assured.
Traizo left and with both shinigami out, one running away in despair and the other in pursuit, you felt more vulnerable than ever before. You tried to remind yourself that Hades would not kill you, L, Mello, Near or Watari, he would not kill anyone who was under Persy's protection, for as long as she continued being interested in providing that protection. Then your thoughts wondered to your family and friends, you felt a cold chill. For a moment you stood in frozen shock as the possibilities reflected themselves all too clearly in your mind.
"(Name)?" L's voice woke you from your thoughts and you realized everyone was staring at you.
"Are you alright?" Mello asked.
You nodded; you didn't want to add to the stress. "Yeah, I'm okay."
"Should we try to track down Kira?" Near inquired.
"Yes, that should be our next move," L replied. "We'll locate him, assuming he is no longer in Japan, which given the circumstances is 75% possible. We need to find out the details about what kind of deal Light made with Hades. Hades is probably using Light because we're rivals. He must be controlling Kira, I'm sure he wouldn't make the mistake of giving him extra room to move. Even if Kira, Light, is a human; Hades must have learned not to leave any open options in his deals anymore; we must find a flaw in the king's plans."
Near, Mello and Watari got to work on their research right away. You stood there for a moment, L just said that Hades wouldn't leave any room for options, yet he was searching for a flaw in a plan that he didn't even fully comprehend yet, and he sounded like he was certain that it could be found. "L..."
L tried to remain strong for everyone's sake, "in the end, justice will prevail." You could easily notice the worry in his voice, but there was a certain confidence there too, and you also tried to stay strong.
xoxox xox xoxox
Kira had proven to be very hard to track down. They were finding mixed clues as if he was traveling from one place to another faster than any human could. L wished he had arrested Kira earlier, but if he was to follow the law he couldn't, since the law didn't really cover such supernatural cases and extensive proof was needed. "I can only conclude that Kira is being aided by the shinigami."
Things were not progressing well with Persy and Traizo still gone. Were they aright? Was Persy just being stubborn because she was upset or did something happen to them?
You suddenly felt someone or something take your hand and realized that you somehow held two pieces of paper. They were back, the cat like shinigami twins, and new they were visible to you outside of the shinigami world after touching pieces of pages of their death notes. You had seen them in an illusion before and you remembered them well from the shinigami world; it was hard to forget those glowing eyes like the brightest lights and the fur that looked like fire with bits missing to reveal bones. "Why are you here?"
Everyone paused what they were doing to looked at you. "Such a welcoming..." The one who's left side had more missing fur spoke. "Allow me to first introduce myself. We've met before but I have not told you my name. I am Higure."
"We would expect a warmer welcome after we came such a long way." The one's who's right side had less fur and more bones spoke. "I am Hakumei."
Page 22: When Things Don't go as Planned
L now stood next to you. You gave him the pieces of Death Notes which were passed around and soon everyone on the team could see the shinigami twins, Higure and Hakumei. "Why are you here?" You repeated the question.
"Quite simple, little girl," Higure started.
"To take you away," Hakumei finished.
"I cannot allow that," L hardly stood a chance against a shinigami, let alone two, being human and all, but he had to try. If they had no intentions of killing him for Persy's sake, then maybe that would be enough.
"Don't worry, you get to come too," Higure told L.
"Indeed you do," Hakumei nodded. "Because the king is growing impatient."
"Very impatient," Higure emphasized. "That's why, to get the princess to return, all her friends will wait for her at home."
"All of us will be one happy family!" There was something in Hakumei's tone like sarcasm mixed with annoyance and just a hint of amusement.
"You're both coming..." Higure started.
Hakumei continued, "and you don't get to return!"
As Higure and Hakumei were about to abduct you and L, Higure paused and rubbed his head. "That did not hurt but I know something hit me!" He picked up the small wooden block that had bounced off his head to the floor. Then another one hit him, and another, and another.
You looked at Near but the white haired boy was just sitting there with a bar of chocolate in his hands. "Mello, please do not let your emotions run wild."
"Shut up! Just hold my chocolate while I kick their tails! No way am I letting two poorly groomed, zombie cat, pet show rejects, kidnap my brother and his girlfriend!" Mello continued throwing things in a fit of anger and frustration. You were so surprised; you didn't even have time to correct him about the entire girlfriend thing.
"Enough!" Higure yelled in anger. "Now you've asked for it!"
"You can't kill us, we're under Persy's protection! You dare go against your princess?" Now it seemed that Near had lost his cool. Well it's about time, that kid had been way too calm throughout the entire case.
"That is not our only option," Higure explained.
"Looks like we'll have more guests then expected. Is that what you mean, brother?" Hakumei asked.
Higure nodded. "I'll carry the girl and the little guy. You can carry the blonde and the dark haired one."
"Is grandpa, coming too?" Hakumei asked.
"Watari will stay," L replied in Higure's place. "Persy will come back here; someone needs to tell her what happened." Then L looked at you, "I'm sorry (Name) it is our only choice. But there is a 97% chance that we will meet Hades. Persy wants us alive so he won't kill us. Clearly he wants us away from the queen. This should mean that at least I'll have a chance to talk to him and perhaps make a deal."
"Like that will happen!" Higure mocked. "You humans think you're so great. You have no rights to choose or complain. We shinigami will have the final word!" He paused to look at Mello who was furiously stomping on the shinigami's tail. "I told you, it doesn't hurt me. You're only wasting your energy like that."
"Persy will not come for us even after being told where we are. She will still want to continue protecting us, even if she must do it from afar and Hades will speak to me." Whatever detail L knew that the shinigami were not taking into consideration, he was certainly confident about it. "Watari..."
"I understand." They had a special connection, it wasn't just something previously planned and said, maybe there was some of that, but when one spoke only a little, the other heard so much more.
Watari's mission was assigned; whatever it may be. You wanted to know, but of course you couldn't ask about it with Higure and Hakumei there. So it had come to this, traveling from one place to another and one world to another. It was stressful and it was getting to you. You had a feeling L had already formulated a plan to bring everyone back to Earth. Because of Persy, the group was safe, but that didn't necessarily mean free. Hades seemed to focus the least attention on Watari so he was the best choice to stay behind. His research would seem unrelated to the case, he could make it look that way. Now it was time to return to the world of death. The feeling sunk in with heavy foreboding.
"Alright, let's go!" Higure approached you, but his brother stood in the way.
"I will carry her," Hakumei said.
Higure pushed him back. "We already agreed on it. I'll carry the girl. If you want to trade then I'll give you the three boys to carry by yourself, you can trade me back one of them if you want."
"Not fair! I want to carry her!" Hakumei complained.
"What are they arguing about?" Traizo had slipped back into the room unnoticed.
"Traizo! When did you get here? Where's Persy?" You asked.
"A second ago and I don't know. She said that I didn't' need to follow her around and she was in a really bad mood, like sad and angry all at once. I came to see how you were doing." Traizo explained.
"There's only one way to settle this!" Higure's voice rung out.
"A battle to the death," Hakumei concluded.
A battle to the death? But they were shinigami, how would that work? Besides they would do that just to decide who would carry you to the shinigami world? "Wait!"
"It's been decided!" Higure got ready.
"A battle to the death!" Hakumei also prepared.
"I think that they are using a metaphor," L said. "I'm 99% sure..."
"Rock, paper, scissors!" Higure and Hakumei said at the same time. Higure's hand was shaped like paper while Hakumei's hand was representing a rock.
"I won! Paper always wins! Paper is the strongest, deadly paper! Hahahaha!"
Hakumei pouted. "Don't rub it in, meanie. Besides, did you see who's here?"
"What do you mean? Oh, well hello Traizo, sorry you're late. I've already won the right to carry the girl to the shinigami world!" Higure announced.
"That can't be!" Traizo was absolutely horrified by the thought. "I won't allow it! (Name), why?"
"I had nothing to do with it!" Honestly, those shinigami had some nerve making decisions for you.
Traizo nodded to himself in determination. "Then it's settled, I'll carry you. I don't know why the plan was changed to going to the shinigami world, but I don't care and long as I can go with you."
Before another word was spoken, Traizo had already picked you up and flown out the window. "Traizo, slow down, you have to warn me first!"
"(Name!)" L called out to you from the window.
"Which one of you is the fastest?" Mello asked.
"Mello, you should-" Near was interrupted before he could finish.
"Calm down?" Mello asked. "No way, L's girl is being stolen by a shinigami!"
"She's not my girlfriend," L pointed out as a matter of fact. Not that the thought was unpleasant. All the opposite, it was quite pleasant, but he knew or rather thought, that it wouldn't work out.
"We're wasting time! Which one is the fastest? Tell me!" Mello insisted.
Hakumei raised his hand a bit surprised by the human's outburst. "My brother always wins at death battle," that was what the shinigami called rock paper scissors, "but I can fly faster than him."
"I can still run faster and I'm better looking!" Higure said in his defense.
"Then let's go!" Mello jumped on Hakumei's back. "L!"
"Mello, you are being rash. You really should calm down and-" L wasn't given a chance to finish before Hakumei picked him up and flew out the window with L in his arms and Mello riding on his back.
"Hey! Don't leave without me! Let's go little guy." Higure picked up Near and took off, leaving a surprised Watari behind.
"Things might get more complicated," Watari reflected as he looked out the window at the shinigami disappearing in the distance.
xoxox xox xoxox
"Traizo, what's that noise?" You heard something big and loud approaching but it was still a little far, just close enough to be heard. Then you saw it up ahead. "An airplane?"
"Do you want to go see it? It's okay we'll make all the stops you want!"
"No, wait!" Too late, Traizo was now flying beside the airplane. Shinigami were quite fast in the air.
There was a young girl sitting next to the window with big blue eyes and red hair, or more like peach or light orange. You weren't sure but you were concerned with more important things anyway. "Look darling!" You couldn't really tell what she was saying but it appeared that she was trying to get the boy sitting beside her to look out the window. He had an annoyed expression and refused to acknowledge her request. It didn't look like she was affected by his mood in the least and kept trying to make him look. Traizo must have appeared invisible to her so what she saw was a flying girl.
"Traizo, we better move on, fast!"
It wasn't until after you were gone that the boy finally looked out the window. "I told you, there's no one there!" He crossed his arms and sunk into his seat. A flying girl, Rizel certainly had an active imagination.
Page 23: Returning to Where We've Been
The scenery began to change from the blue skies of Earth, to the atmosphere of the shinigami world. "There they are!" You heard Mello's voice calling.
Traizo looked back but continued flying backwards. He didn't notice the tall stone pillar behind him and flew right into it. The impact made him drop you suddenly.
"(Name)!" Assuming he wanted to be released, Hakumei dropped L.
"That's all nice and romantic but if you catch her who's going to catch you?" Mello yelled at L, he then proceeded to pull on Hakumei's cat like ears. "Why did you drop him? You should have caught her instead of dropping him!"
"Even if you can't hurt me, that's annoying!" Hakumei flew around in circles but Mello didn't let go of his ears.
"I'm here and I'm not happy you flew off without me!" Higure had just arrived and was quick to act upon seeing the situation. While you and L fell from a great altitude, Traizo had his wing stuck on the thorny vines surrounding the pillar and in his panic because you were falling, he could think of nothing else than to pull at it to get free, which was not the most effective solution. Higure tossed Near into the air and caught you and L, one on each arm.
"I said you couldn't carry her!" Traizo finally broke free just in time for Near to suddenly fall into his arms.
"I do not enjoy being thrown around!" Near clung to Traizo, the fright was still abundant in his mind, even if his tone and expression didn't really show it.
"Can we land?" You tried to put an end to the chaos.
Higure nodded and landed, setting L on the ground first. "I got to carry the human girl after all!" He gave you a hug like a child would hug a plush toy.
"Not fair! Put her down!" Traizo complained while, waiving Near around. "Here I'll give you this!" He tossed the white haired boy towards Higure who caught him and gave him a disapproving look. "Why would I want this thing?" He then set Near on he ground.
"L!" Near hugged his brother for dear life.
"It's okay, no one will treat you like an object anymore." The dark haired detective than addressed the shinigami, "everyone please be more considerate."
Flying above, Hakumei was getting dizzy and Mello was already very dizzy. The shinigami spun around some more and finally landed. A dizzy Mello got off and attempted to walk but lost his balance and fell on you. Luckily you managed to stay on your feet while supporting him.
"Why is everyone trying to steal (Name) today? She's mine!" Traizo yelled.
"I'm not... trying to... steal her..." Hakumei dizzily said.
"Me either, I just wanted to carry her for a little while," Higure added.
"I'm not trying to steal her." Mello replied as soon as his head stopped spinning, or at least slowed down. "I would never try to take away my brother's girlfriend."
"I'm not your brother!" Traizo then realized Mello was referring to L and pointed at him accusingly. "I told you to stay away from her!"
"Please calm down, I'm not trying to harm (Name) in any way and you have nothing to worry about because there is no way," L stopped upon seeing the look on your face. He meant to finish with something along the lines of 'no way she'll like me' but he didn't want to say it.
"No way, what?" There was an uncomfortable silence in the toxic air as you insisted, "finish it."
L shook his head. "It doesn't matter."
"Fine, be that way!" You couldn't help it but to wonder what he was going to say, yet at the same time, you weren't sure if you wanted to hear it.
"I guess that's the end of the road for us, we'll see you all again later," Higure said.
"Yeah, our job is done for now," Hakumei added. Higure took off, followed by his twin brother, Hakumei. The two cat-like, fire colored shinigami, disappeared in the distance and the uncomfortable silence continued.
"This stinks," Near quietly complained.
"I know, L doesn't know how to handle his feelings. Keeping his crush bottled up isn't good for his health," Mello whispered.
Near shook his head. "No, I meant it stinks here, the ground stinks like it's rotten."
Mello rolled his eyes. "What did you expect from the world of death? A lively flowery scent?"
The atmosphere was dry, stinky and toxic. The temperature was beginning to become unpleasant. It wasn't this hot the last time you came, but now it felt like a desert. The white stone ruins became more abundant as you moved forward. Most of them were covered in some sort of dry vine like plant with thorns. There wasn't a lot of vegetation in the shinigami world and what little vegetation could be found, had a certain hostile look to it.
"Don't get too close to the plants (Name), they bite." As Traizo gave the warning an odd dry bronze flower with unusual triangular petals stretched as far as it could trying to bite you. You jumped back but soon realized that the deathly plant couldn't stretch any further than that.
After walking a short distance, the group arrived at the ruins of a palace, unlike the outside, within it ruins, the temperature was cool. The place looked like it could collapse any minute. Pieces of the floor were missing and most of the ground of the first floor was desert-like dry land. Whole walls were missing and it defied the laws of logic that the structure somehow still held together supporting the weight of the upper floors.
"This is the royal palace," Traizo announced.
Some palace, it seemed that most shinigami didn't really have a house of their own or any place to live. They were all over the shinigami world, wasting away just like the world itself. This so called palace appeared to be the best building around and it was a mess. "Interesting, is it part of their culture?" The question seemed innocent enough but in his genius head, L was already making a number of connections and analyzing many theories.
"My guess is they don't have five star hotels in this world," Mello correctly concluded.
Near rolled his eyes, "I hope you can survive."
"Yeah, well, I hope you can survive without toys!" Mello argued.
Near's eyes went wide at Mello's words for just a split second. The rest of his face remained expressionless and soon the look in his eyes returned to normal. "I'll endure it." He wasn't looking forward to that.
"Food is a necessity. The king understands that, right? We'll still be given chocolate, right?" Now it was Mello's turn to worry. He didn't want to endure living without chocolate.
"Of course there's food," Traizo assured. "Higure and Hakumei are supposed to bring things that are needed so they can get some food from the human world, and if you don't like it, I can get something else for you (Name)."
"Thanks Traizo I appreciate it, but really anything will be fine as long as it's edible for humans." Somehow you didn't think anything that originated from the shinigami world would be edible for a human.
"Okay, just remember that the food here is really bad. I don't eat it and I don't think it's a good idea for you to eat it." Traizo then looked at L with a mix of mischief and jealousy. "Mr. Detective can eat as much as he wants."
"You're too kind," L decided to smile, he sure looked cute smiling.
Traizo made a pouty face then stuck out his tongue at L. The rest of the way was spent in relative silence as you went up the abundant stairs, narrow passages and rooms that seemed to shake with every step you took.
You finally reached a large room made of black stones instead of the white stones that formed the rest of the structure. The floor was slightly tilted and the tall black columns seemed to reach for the skies endlessly. Strangely, you didn't see them sticking out of the building from outside. There were a few uneven steps ahead, covered by a ragged, red carpet and at the end there was a throne made of bones.
Ragged, black curtains hung in the places where pieces of the walls were missing. The room had no ceiling yet the light from outside didn't reach it. On the throne sat a figure in a black robe with a scythe at his side a skeleton body. "All of you are to remain here until my daughter returns. You may stay within the palace if you wish, now go."
"Just like that..." So what if he was the king of the Shinigami World, you weren't going to be, in a way, taken hostage and not do something about it. You just wished you knew what to do.
"She won't come back, but maybe I can think of a way to change that," L confidently spoke.
"What makes you so sure?" Hades stood from his throne taking his scythe as he approached L.
"For a long time, Persy thought there was no way she could ever meet her mother. Recently she gained hopes of meeting her after learning of her location. Because of this, her goal right now is to meet Persephone the first. Just as your goal is to stop her," L explained.
"Fool!" The temperature dropped suddenly and every human did what they could not to visibly shiver. Clearly the queen was a sensitive point for Hades. It seemed that he was not the kind of king to keep himself secluded from the rest of the population of the shinigami world but he didn't like talking about his human queen. "Do not speak of what you do not understand!"
Page 24: Waiting for a New Day
The shinigami king was angry, but L did not back down. "Humans change their minds." L felt Hades' scythe against his throat, it was ice cold and burning at the same time.
"L!" You, Mello and Near rushed towards him.
"(Name) don't get involved!" Traizo called after you, but you just couldn't allow L to get hurt, or killed, without trying to save him.
"It's alright; his highness needs my help so he won't kill me." The confidence the human named Lawliet displayed annoyed Hades to no end.
"Humans who challenge death find nothing but sorrow. Humans fear death, they fear their end, it is natural." Hades reasoned. The temperature started to rise to an unbearable heat. You wondered if the room was always this unstable and if the shinigami could feel it even if it probably didn't bother them as it would bother a human.
"It is true that humans do not wish to die, normally they don't. They feel a certain satisfaction from escaping death in a sense. They might want to avoid it, negotiate maybe. Some even have quite an arsenal of tactics at their disposal." You wondered where L was going with all of this.
By the way Mello kept nodding to himself as if confirming that his own unspoken theories matched L's and by the knowing look Near had, you concluded that they knew where this was going. You had heard nothing but legends, but maybe some of them were true. Maybe Persephone the first became Hades' queen to escape death and maybe she regretted it.
"How much do you know?" As Hades asked his question, in a voice that demanded a clear, direct and truthful answer, the temperature once again changed. This time it was normal yet the air felt more toxic. The scent was different from before, almost chemical instead of rotten.
"Before becoming Persephone she was Nymda. She had two sisters and was the youngest daughter of the countess of-"
"Enough," the shinigami king had been taken by surprise. He did not expect Lawliet to voice such specific facts.
L continued, "there was a deal, what happened was..."
"Silence!" The entire world violently shook with Hades' anger. "I will consider using your skills, but I am not asking for nor accepting your help. I will give the orders when I've made my decision. Leave now!"
The four of you left the throne room and wondered around the palace in search of decent rooms to stay in. It seemed that you would end up at least spending the night there. There was no telling when you could return to Earth.
"This isn't a proper place for a human." Traizo was happy to be with you, but he took notice of your discomfort, plus he was feeling quite upset because you didn't seem to like the idea of Hades threatening L's life. "(Name) needs yummy things to eat and a soft place to rest," with a deadly glare that wished to erase the numbers that floated above the detective's head, Traizo blamed the entire situation on L. "It's your fault! Maybe if you die, the king will be in a better mood and (Name) and I can go back to the human world!"
"The king wouldn't want you to do that. He needs help, it will only take a little longer for him accept that then..." L had to admit, it felt nice to be a step ahead against all odds.
"You've caused too much trouble for (Name)," Traizo retrieved his Death Note and a bony pen.
"Traizo stop!" You tried to get the pen or Death Note away from him. But not a single letter was written when the notebook of death slipped out of his hand as Mello jumped in to defend his dear brother. Traizo held the blond by the back of his shirt. "Mihael," the shinigami retrieved another Death Note, that one once belonging to his brother.
"Hey, that's mine!" You claimed it.
"Really (Name)? You want to write his name in the Death Note?" Traizo tossed Mello aside, causing him to collide with Near and both boys fell to the hard stone floor. "Write Lawliet's name too!"
You shook your head. "Don't kill L, Mello or Near, promise?" Traizo picked up his own Death Note from the ground and gave you a frustrated look before switching to looking like a sad puppy and nodding his head. Before anything else happened, you had t do something for him. "Traizo... Show me around the shinigami world tomorrow, okay?"
"Only you and me?" Traizo sounded hopeful, though his eyes revealed he was expecting you to say that the other three humans had to come along as well.
"Alright, just the two of us," you agreed.
Traizo stared at you for a moment before it sunk in and he become very, very happy. "I'll show you all the best places! It'll be great!"
xoxox xox xoxox
As you lay in an oversized bed staring at the ceiling, you wondered if Persy was the only one who actually had a bed in her room, she was probably one of the few who had a room to sleep in. Shinigami probably didn't need sleep but maybe they liked to sleep sometimes. Out the window, which was more like a missing piece of wall, you could see a few shinigami sleeping on the ground. The king had said you could stay in his daughter's room, you knew Persy wouldn't really mind, but you wondered where she was.
It seemed that Persy's desire to meet her mother was strong enough to keep her in the human world. She could choose to follow the owner of her Death Note, which she had been previously doing, or follow the Death Note itself. Her Death Note was on Earth so she must have chosen to stay with it. She was the only shinigami capable of stealing Death Notes and hers was hard to take away by another shinigami even if its location was reveled.
You had given your death note back to Traizo for safe keeping, though it was still yours, as was Persy's death note even if you didn't carry it, you were sure that Persy wouldn't reclaim it since she would have to return to her world if she did.
Not surprisingly you couldn't sleep so you decided to go for a walk. When you saw the shinigami twins Higure and Hakumei earlier that day when they brought food from the human world, they told you of their mission which they had completed. To go all over the Shinigami World and spread the word that by order of the king, no shinigami was allowed to write your name or the names of Lawliet, Mihael and Nate in their Death Notes. It seemed that if you were to die by the hands of a shinigami, it would be in the handwriting of Hades himself, if at all. L appeared to be rather confident so that might not be a problem for now.
Your footsteps led you to a tower with spiraling stairs. There were torches of unnatural blue fire held by incomplete statues on the walls, worn and missing large chunks. As you went up the stairs, you felt a soft breeze. The fresh air was very welcome as it was surprisingly pure unlike the toxic air that reigned around the rest of the atmosphere. The palace certainly didn't make any sense; it defied space and nature as did the entire Shinigami World. Even so, you were thankful for the clean air. The stairs appeared endless but you kept going. The breeze became a little stronger as you went up, but it was still too gentle to be called wind.
Finally, you reached the top of the tower which had no roof or walls. On the floor was L, sitting in his own special way. He looked towards you with a smile. "Couldn't sleep?"
"Yeah," you sat down beside him to enjoy the fresh air of the night.
He looked up to the skies. "Amazing isn't it?"
The horizon was dark, completely black but when you looked straight up into the skies you were left in awe. Brilliant violet and blue stars shone in a black background with more light than any star you've ever seen on Earth. A line of light seemed to be flowing from another tower at the center of the palace, which was surprisingly in good conditions in comparison to the rest of the structure. It was like a river of stars flowing into an endless sea of light and dark. "It's beautiful."
"When I first saw the dark skies of this world I never thought they hid something like this. I wasn't even sure if night existed here but if it did, I didn't imagine it would be like this." Even with the current situation, even in the mist of unresolved chaos, L felt at peace at that moment. The king, the queen, the princess... he still had questions, but he also knew and understood a lot. He had found the last piece of the puzzle reflected in that beautiful sky. Everything, from the reason why Hades did what he did, to the way to grant queen Persephone's new wish. Then there was Kira; Kira and his mysterious return. That was the only question that remained, he had help from the shinigami world, L was sure, but he would first have to solve the current case before returning to the original one.
"This world appears to be dying, but it has such a lovely night sky." It was beyond a doubt an unforgettable experience, to see a sky most humans could only see in their dreams.
"Those stars are the life of this world." L words were not mere poetry. You should have known he could only speak in facts, but for that moment you missed it and only focused on the beauty of the skies above and L's comfortable presence next to you.
You weren't sure why you had he sudden urge to make a certain confession. Maybe it was because you had a rare moment alone with L, in which you could speak to him without upsetting your shinigami companion. Maybe it was the effect of that beautiful sky shining impressively. You weren't sure but you said it, the words flowed out before you could stop them. "L, I have a confession..."
L took his gaze away from the skies to look at you, "I'm listening."
Page 25: Closer to Finding What we Seek
You looked at L, then to the skies once again. "I heard you taking to Persy, when we were on the boat."
"I know." L's reply took you by surprise.
"You knew? But then why did you say such things if you knew I was there?" You couldn't make sense of it, yet to him it was so obvious.
"Because it's true," simple and to the point.
You searched for a hint of something, anything, then decided L needed a hug. "You really need to give yourself more credit, Persy was right about that."
L hugged you back and savored the moment. "Some things just don't work out, but thank you."
After the hug had ended, the two of you stayed close. "Why do you think that way? Is it past heartbreak?" You stopped. "Sorry, I didn't mean to ask like that."
"It's alright, I don't mind and it's not that. I don't think I can be heartbroken if I've never been in love. Maybe that's why I don't think it could work out, I've never gone past 'like', it seems out of my reach."
"Don't give up so easily." You thought it sounded more as if he was almost afraid to get there rather than not being able to.
"There are things I need to do, as L. I'm always busy, always secluded, until recently. It was the only way to stay safe. I don't think most people would want that kind of life. I can't be with someone who would accidentally reveal my location and identity or worse, with someone whose life I would endanger." So that was it, the reason why he was convinced he could never have a relationship of any kind.
"You're a genius, you can think of a way. You don't need to be afraid to try."
"I've lost..." L suddenly became quiet, speaking just above a whisper. "I've lost many people in the past, family, friends, colleagues, risking their lived to protect others. Sorry (Name), let's just enjoy the night sky. I heard from Higure and Hakumei that night doesn't come to this world after every day. Sometimes it can be three or four days, even one or two weeks before a night comes."
L might have worked with the police in the past, officers who were exposed to dangerous situations. He might have worked in an environment with other elite agents, people whose lives were in danger while he tried to lead them to safety with his strategies. It was a lot of pressure.
In such an environment, no matter how careful L was, accidents could happen, lives could be lost. Unexpected turns of events happened, even if they were rare with his level of skill to predict people and read them like books, but it wasn't entirely impossible.
Mello and Near, his adoptive brothers, Watari, a father figure, his precious family. They were all L had after losing so much, yet he went on. He went on helping others, solving what no one else could solve, becoming the greatest detective in the world. L was truly amazing and you decided that you would make him realize that somehow. You weren't sure what you would do, but somehow you would let him know.
xoxox xox xoxox
"Mello! Wait for us!" Near called a lot louder than Mello would have liked. "Traizo, I'm really tired, can't you give me a hand?"
The shinigami gave the white haired boy a suspicious look. Why did he have to yell if he was right next to him? "Didn't you say you could manage?"
"I'm not very good at walking and even worse at going up stairs. Please?" Surely Mello had gotten the message by then, but Near would give them as much time as he could.
Mello cringed at the loud voice and L snapped awake from one of the rare occasions when he actually slept. The surface in which he slept was rather hard but what caught his attention was the familiar girl using him as a pillow. You must have stayed up too late looking at the stars and fallen asleep on L.
Mello had seen the two of you and quietly informed Near of the good news. The blond hastily made his way to the top of the tower once again for the sake of curiosity, while his white haired brother lagged a little behind, then Traizo arrived saw them.
You weren't sure where Traizo disappeared to that night, but he was back. He followed Near and saw Mello enter the tower's spiral stairs. He flew up only to be held back by Near, whom Traizo didn't know was only buying some time so that L's name wouldn't end up in a Death Note due to the shinigami's jealousy.
"L?" You couldn't help it but to feel your face become warm as a red tint invaded your checks.
"Good morning." How could he smile so casually as if nothing happened? L was special indeed, one of the kind.
Mello cursed the bad timing under his breath and rushed to deliver the official warning. "Don't look suspicious, Traizo's on his way. Near won't be able to hold him off much longer."
"What do you mean suspicious?" You questioned.
"I know you two slept together." The way Mello worded it, made it sound as if it was quite different from what had actually happened.
"It's true," L spoke, "but perhaps it is best if you don't say it that way."
Mello only grinned mischievously. "Right..."
"I'm falling, I'm falling! You're going to fast, it's scary!" Finally Traizo arrived with Near, who was riding piggy back and putting up an act to slow him down.
"What an annoying little human," Traizo set Near down. "You said (Name) would be happy if I helped you, but I'm not sure why that would be true."
You took the hint reflected in Near's eyes right away. "Thank you for helping Near get here!"
"Then you are happy because of that? Alright but I don't like that you were up here alone with those two, at least it wasn't just Lawliet, then I would have killed him." There was that eternal glare that Traizo held for L.
"No killing my friends, remember?" You reminded your shinigami of the previous agreement.
"I remember but do you remember about yesterday? You wanted me to show you around today. I flew all over the Shinigami World last night, looking for places to visit. There are not a lot of interesting places here, but I found a place you might like. Higure and Hakumei already delivered food from the human world. Go eat and have lots of energy to spend the entire day with me!" Traizo glanced at L from the corner of his eyes searching for any hints of jealousy or discomfort. He didn't like the detective's blank expression, but it wasn't as bad as it could be, it was just hard to read.
"Right, I did promise," you agreed.
xoxox xox xoxox
After munching on a Poptart of your favorite flavor, you were off to see the Shinigami World. "This is the only interesting place around here." Traizo landed close to an odd sphere. It hard large pieces missing and inside you could see a strange glow. "If you concentrate it can show you anything happening in the human world."
"I want to try it." You focused on your house. Your parents were there just as you thought they would be.
"Do you think she's alright? She hasn't called in such a long time," your mother sounded worried.
"I'm sure she's fine. She's probably busy with her studies and visiting the country. She probably made some friends by now too." Though your father tried to sound calm and optimistic, the look in his eyes revealed that he was worried too.
"I need to remember to call them when I get back to the human world." Next you focused on your best friend's house. "Just as I thought, sleeping in on the weekend. You saw something that caught your attention in the nightstand next to the bed where your friend slept. It was a picture of her and a boy she liked, hugging. "Did they finally get together? She's had a crush on him for so long." You knew that when you got back, which by the looks of it wouldn't be any time soon, everyone would have many stories to tell. You would also have to make up a few stories to tell them about your trip. "Thanks for showing me this Traizo."
"You're very welcome (Name), the Shinigami World isn't as interesting as the human world, but it has this. My brother and I used to come here all the time." It was a special place to Traizo, the place where he fell in love with you and now he was on a date with you, or at least that's how he thought about it.
"This really is a special place..." Suddenly you got an idea and concentrated on Persy but no image appeared. "Why can't I find her?"
"Who?" Traizo asked.
"Persy, I'm trying to make her appear here, but she won't. Finding my parents and best friend was easy. Is it because I don't know her possible location?"
"Concentrating on the one you want to find should be enough, but shinigami cannot be found this way, even half shinigami," Traizo explained.
"I see..." You would not give up. You were certain there had to be a way to use this. Maybe Persy had gone back to Watari. He was a human, so finding him shouldn't be a problem, even if you didn't know his exact location, you were pretty sure he must have moved by now. Sure enough, focusing on Watari's image was sufficient to find him and Persy was there. "Just as I thought!"
You watched the scene taking place on Earth. "Watari, are you sure that it's coming from the Shinigami World?" Persy asked.
"Yes, I'm 100% sure," Watari replied.
"I see, so this is where L gets the percent thing. He picked it up from you. Anyway we need to find a way to communicate with everyone and tell them." Persy and Watari appeared to have found something important by the hopeful look on her face.
"That will not be necessary," Watari assured her. "L must have already figured it out by now. From the Shinigami World the answer must be a lot clearer than we can see it from here."
End of Note V
Disclaimer, I don't own Death Note, Rizel Mine or Poptarts. Hakumei and Higure are OCs. The names Hakumei and Higure are both related to the words "twilight" and "dusk" in Japenese.