"'We saw your detective today,' he says, neglecting the 'We didn't harm him,' but suggesting that yes, he's still looking." (10x100 word drabbles)
There's a plus side to that.
It makes looking for D that much easier: All he has to look for is a splash of colour, a voice that stands out and streetlight glittering off long, painted nails.
Well, that's what he's found.
The wrong colours, the wrong shade on nails, a voice that's exactly the same but completely different to D's.
Leon stops, hands in pockets and stares at the cloaked figure across the street.
They don't speak. D's grandfather is one mass of black cloak that floats and flaps in the wind. Leon's just Leon.
And the kid that walks out from behind the old man?
For a minute, Leon honestly doesn't recognise him, or understand the hatred that burns in the kids eyes. Not until his expression changes to the superior smirk he'd been wearing when he died.
The boy stops in the middle of the road, wearing that fake-D-smirk. "You'll never find him." he promises. "You can't hunt down a god like an animal."
D's granddad hisses and drags the kid away.
D sits on the sofa, sipping his tea, expression very, very blank. A piece of paper is on the table next to the incense burner, the writing elegant but childish.
"We saw your detective today."
"We" presumably included Grandfather, and D would not think about what Grandfather might have done when he came across the detective.
His hands are shaking and his face is paler than usual.
If nothing else, the letter proved that the child had been his father. Only his father could be so maddening in five short words.
His tea had gone cold.
D burned the letter.
It was Leon's birthday. Traditionally, he got drunk by the generosity of his co-workers. This year, he gets drunk on his own, buying beer because it's the only thing he knows the word for. The music's too loud, the women are ugly, and the voices don't mean anything.
Leon feels old.
He feels like getting very, very drunk, and it's a good plan; he's following it to the letter until he realises someone's invaded his table. He jerks his head up, glowering. Sees D sat demurely opposite him, lights giving him a multicoloured halo.
And then just laughs and laughs.
"Of all the places I expected to find you - " Leon manages, breathless, amused and bitter.
"I expected to find you in LA. I... wasn't aware you'd left."
"Yeah well, you fucked off on that ship thing. Why would you be."
D thins his lips and looks away. "I spoke to the Chief. He's under the impression you're looking me."
"Really?" Leon drains his glass. "I wonder why."
A few moments of relative silence pass before D looks back. He looks completely bewildered, and it's the most honest expression Leon's ever seen on his face.
"Why were you looking?"
Leon orders another beer without thinking - D interrupts with a few words Leon doesn't understand, and the waitress comes back with something stronger, something that doesn't remind him of sex in a canoe.
Part of him can't believe it. Part of him is convinced he's passed out, talking to a figment made of alcohol fumes.
It's that part of him that was letting him talk. If the rest of him was in charge, he'd have grabbed D and...
Somehow, that part's taken over and he's looming over D, gripping him by the collar and dragging him off the chair -
D feels a twist of something akin to homesickness knot around his heart as Leon grabs him. The taller man's grip has him balancing on his toes, as usual, and Leon reeks of cheap beer. His hands are shaking, and his eyes are wide and glittering suspiciously.
For a moment he thinks Leon will hit him. He tilts his head back and looks at the detective.
He doesn't know what Leon sees in his gaze - his usually serenity seems to have deserted him. Whatever he sees makes him sigh, his expression weary, and rest his head on D's shoulder.
Leon sits at the battered table, head in his hands. He can hear D moving around, picking things up and putting them down again, his dress whispering and nails clicking. His apartment's pretty empty; there's not much to look at.
"You left, you stupid bastard," Leon whispers. D shouldn't have been able to hear him but he does anyway. Between his fingers, Leon can see him freeze, back to him, and carefully put something down. "You got on that stupid ship and just left. No - you shoved my ass off it first, didn't you? And I promised Chris I'd-"
D's grandfather stands perfectly still, outside Leon's tattered apartment building, lips thin. He can see them both. His youngest grandchild stands at his side, hands clasped demurely before him.
His eldest grandson crouches by the detective's chair, reaches out tentatively to brush the Detective's hair back, trying to make him look up. The american says something, then stands up and retrieves a battered backpack, not taking his eyes off the child any more than he has to.
Sofu's heart stops in his chest when he sees the wax-crayon drawing, and he can almost feel his grandson's heart doing the same.
"You tried to take it with you - from what I heard you nearly got yourself killed - shot - for it - so I figured you'd want it back."
D's hands are trembling, and he huddles over the picture like he's in pain. Leon touches his shoulder, and D catches his hand, eyes glassy with tears and a genuine smile on his face. Leon stares, trying to burn that expression into his memory, then can't because D has buried his head in Leon's chest and wrapped an arm around him as tight as he can -
Grandfather mourns. His (reborn) son celebrates.