Kira's Other Half

By Alkirian

Mystery / Romance

Ally and Soul

I walk through the front doors of the new headquarters building, and try not to gawk at all the high-tech equipment around me. Walking over to an input panel, I enter in my code, 8246, before placing my right index finger on a scanner. It analyzes it, and projects a copy onto an attached screen. I then take a tube and place it over my right eye, and a laser scans my retina, the results are projected onto the screen, before a picture of my face appears behind them. The next door unlocks, and I walk through to the metal-detector room. I take off my jacket, earrings, and watch, placing them in the indicated area, before I walk through the metal detector, and pass through on my first try.

‘Nailed it.’ I think to myself in a sing-song voice, before another thought occurs. ‘Dear god, am I really that sleep deprived? I need tea, right now.’

I walk into the main room, grabbing my items and redressing myself. “Good morning, Yagami-san, Matsuda-san.” I say out loud, Ryuzaki, Light, and Misa nowhere in sight.

They both reply “Good morning.” I sit down at the computer on the far left, sitting beside Mr. Yagami.

Not a half hour after I’ve sat down, Aizawa walks in through the metal detector, wearing only his underwear, socks, and shirt. “Good morning.” He calls out, gruffly. I silently thank the gods that I decided to wear as little metal as possible.

“What’s wrong?” Mr. Yagami asks. “Did you get hurt?”

“Oh, this?” Aizawa reaches to touch the Band-Aid on his forehead. “Kind of. I had a little fight with my wife and… it’s just that my daughter’s still young, and I’m hardly ever at home as it is, so…”

Mr. Yagami nods, understanding. “Ah. Yes, it’s probably best if you sleep at home.”

“Well, you’re gonna be missing out, the rooms in this place are amazing!” Matsuda hypes. “If I were you, I’d just move the whole family in here!”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah, that’s easy for you to say as a bachelor.” Aizawa shoots down the idea.

“Mirai-chan, why aren’t you living here?” Matsuda asks, turning to me to include me in the conversation.

“My parents were against the idea of me living alone in an apartment, in a building of almost exclusively men, namely because of the two that are my age. Amane-san doesn’t count, apparently, because she has her own floor.” The lie flows from me so easily. In order to ask my parents to live at headquarters, which they would have been against anyway for the aforementioned reasons, I’d have to explain to them that I was working on the Kira investigation, then they would have freaked out and pulled me from the investigation team and forbidden me from speaking to any of them for the rest of my life.

“I can understand that. I wouldn’t want my daughter living with a bunch of strangers.” Aizawa nods, before asking, “Where are the others?”

“Oh, they’re on a date.” Matsuda explains. “Last we checked, all of them were up in Misa-Misa’s room.”

“Surveillance cameras, huh?” Aizawa comments. “Well, since we know Misa-san has some kind of connection to the second Kira, I guess it does make sense.” He turns to Matsuda. “But for god’s sake, Matsuda, would you stop with this ‘Misa-Misa’ crap.”

“Uh, yeah, sure…”

We all turn to the screen. “Man, this has got to be the lamest date I’ve ever been on.” Misa complains.

“No no, please, just pretend I’m not even here, okay?” Ryuzaki reassures. “By the way, are you gonna eat that piece of cake?” He points.

“Cake makes you fat, I’m not gonna eat any.”

“Actually, I’ve found that you don’t gain any weight as long as you burn calories by using your brain.”

“Humph! So now you’re calling me stupid?! Fine then! I’ll give you the piece of cake as long as you agree to leave me and Light-kun alone!”

“Even if I leave you two alone, I’m still gonna be watching on surveillance cameras, so it wouldn’t make any difference.”

“You pervert! Could you stop it with your creepy hobby?!”

“You can call me whatever you like,” he stands from his crouch on the couch, steps onto the coffee table, and grabs Misa’s plate, “last chance for cake!”

Misa scrunches her face up in a very… uncomfortable way. “Okay then, I’ll just close the curtains and turn off the lights!”

Ryuzaki crouches back down. “We have infrared cameras in here as well.” Misa pouts, at least her face is out of its weird position.

“What’s wrong with you?” Light asks, turning to Ryuzaki. “I thought moving here was supposed to help us catch Kira, but since we’ve been here, you don’t seem all that motivated to me.”

“Not motivated?” Ryuzaki sags in his position. “You’re right. Actually, I’m depressed.”

“Depressed? What for?”

“Well, truthfully, all this time I thought that you were Kira, and my entire case hinged on that fact. I guess I just can’t get past the fact that my deduction was wrong. Although, having said that, I’m still suspicious of you.” He hold us his wrist. “That’s why we’re wearing these.” He lets his arm fall. “And we also know that Kira can control people’s actions, which means it’s highly likely that Kira was controlling your actions so that I would suspect you. If I assume both you and Misa-san were being controlled by him, then everything we’ve observed so far makes a lot more sense to me.”

“If that’s what you think, then Misa-chan and I were both Kira during the time we were being controlled, right?” Light clarifies.

“Yes. I don’t think I could’ve been wrong about that. The two of you are Kira.” They glare at him. “If what I’m thinking is correct, when your confinement began, you were Kira. I don’t believe it’s coincidence that as soon as you were imprisoned, the killings stopped. Until then, everything pointed to you being Kira. But after two weeks, criminals actually began dying again. Based on that evidence, I can only conclude that Kira’s power passes between people.”

“That’s an interesting idea. But if it’s true, then it’ll be nearly impossible to catch Kira.”

“Yes, that’s why I’m overwhelmed. Even if we catch someone under his control, they’ll likely lose their powers and any memory of their crimes. So, in the end, pursuing them becomes futile.”

“But at this point, we have no way of knowing if that’s the case. Cheer up, would ya?”

“Cheer up? No, I’m sorry, I can’t. It’s probably better if I just stop trying so hard. By chasing Kira so desperately, we’re just putting our lives at risk for nothing. Yes, it’s just a waste of time.”

I gape at Ryuzaki’s confession. ‘A waste of time? Dude! I feel almost insulted that you consider your chase after me a waste of time! I’m glad to know that I’ve slipped under your radar, and will continue to do so, but still!’

Light looks at Ryuzaki, before standing up. “Ryuzaki…” He says, warningly.

Ryuzaki looks up, before Light punches him in the face, sending him flying across the room, and consequentially dragging Light after him because of the chain. Furniture is tipped over, and Misa squeals in surprise and fear.

Ryuzaki gingerly sits up. “Y’know, that really hurt…”

“That’s enough!” Light scolds. “You don’t feel like doing anything just because your genius deduction was wrong and I’m not Kira?!”

Ryuzaki wipes his sleeve across his mouth. “Fine, perhaps I phrased that the wrong way. I meant it would be pointless for us to make a move, so we shouldn’t even bother.”

“If we don’t chase Kira, he’ll never be caught! Is that what you want?! If you were just gonna give up, then why’d you involve all those innocent people?!” Light walks over to Ryuzaki, and hauls him up by the shirt. “More importantly, what was the point in putting Misa-chan and I behind bars?!”

“I understand.” Ryuzaki admits, quietly, coldly, and dangerously. I tense in my chair, sensing danger. “But still, whatever the reason,” Ryuzaki drops from Light’s grip, and kicks him in the jaw, “an eye for an eye, my friend.” Light pulls the chain taut from his free fall, and drags Ryuzaki after him.

“Idiots…” I mutter, before I stand, and bolt up the stairs.

“Mirai-chan, where’re you going?” Matsuda calls after me.

“Knowing Light-kun, he’ll punch back.” I reason. “And knowing Ryuzaki-kun, he’ll retaliate. If someone doesn’t go interrupt them, this’ll go on forever.”

Without waiting for a response, I keep running up the stairs to the nearest elevator, and press the button for Misa’s floor. I jump out of the elevator one it reaches her floor, and burst into the room they’re in. By the time I open the door, both Light and Ryuzaki are gripping each other by the shirt, a fist pulled back and ready to punch. Without wasting a second, I rush over and slap both of them upside the head.

“What the hell were you thinking, you two?!” I scold. I first turn my wrath on Light. “Light-kun, it doesn’t matter how stupid someone’s being, you do not throw a punch. If necessary, throw a barbed word at them, but never throw a punch. This is how people get arrested!” I then turn to Ryuzaki with the same glare I used on Light. “And you! Ryuzaki-kun, I’m sorry you’re feeling depressed, but everyone gets something wrong at some point. Just because you made a mistake doesn’t mean you get to give up! We’ve spent too much time and energy on this case to give up now! So suck it up, princess!” I smack both of them again for good measure, and walk over to Misa, who’s been hiding behind an overturned table for the last few minutes. I stick on a much calmer, kinder face, and kneel next to her.

“Are you alright?” I ask, and she nods. I give her a hand to help her up. “I don’t believe we’ve actually met. My name is Mirai Tsukino, it’s a pleasure to meet you.” I bow.

“I’m Misa Amane. It’s nice to meet you, Tsukino-san.” She bows too.

I force a friendly and pleasant smile. “Oh please, Mirai will work just fine. Since we’re the only two girls here, we might as well be friends.”

She smiles happily. “Okay then, Mirai-chan! Then you can call me Misa!”

I continue smiling at her, before I turn to the guys, where I drop it. “Now, you two, apologize to each other!” When they don’t make a move, I stalk over to them, cracking my knuckles. “NOW!”

They quickly apologize, and I plaster on a smile again. “Good. Misa-chan, why don’t we go to one of your other rooms and watch a movie while the boys clean this up?”

“What?! But Mirai-chan-” The guys protest.

“Hush. You two can join us when you’re done. All I ask is that you flip and move the furniture back to their original positions, and put the dishes onto the coffee table. That’s all, you should be done by the time we choose a movie and get it to start.” They grumble their protests, but set about cleaning up. “Look, if you two don’t want me playing Mommy, then don’t force me into a position where I have no choice but to do so.”

I follow Misa to her entertainment room, and let her pick out the movie. She picks a Romantic Drama, one I couldn’t care less for, but I nod along anyway. Just before we press play, Light and Ryuzaki walk into the room. Light sits in the middle, between Misa and Ryuzaki, and I sit on Ryuzaki’s other side.

I watch the movie with barely contained disinterest, ignoring Misa cuddling with Light, Light trying to ignore her, and Ryuzaki barely keeping his comments on the movie’s realism to himself. Eventually, I give up on reality, and try to contact the voice in my head. Yes, I am that bored.

‘Hey, hello in there!’ No response. ‘Hello? Heya! Greetings! What’s up? How’s it hanging? Sup, brochacho-’

‘Oh dear sweet merciful god, will you please shut up?!’

‘Ha-ha! A response! Can you respond again?’ No answer. I shrug it off, and let my mind wander for the remaining hour. Once the movie finishes, I stand up and stretch. “Well, that was enough of a break. Back to work!”

“Aww, Mirai-chan, do you have to?” Misa pleads.

I slap on a sympathetic face. “Sorry, Misa-chan, but I’m here to help catch Kira. How about tomorrow, the two of us can do something fun together!” Fake cheer drips from my voice, but she doesn’t notice.

“That sounds great, Mirai-chan!” She agrees, and I end up abandoning the guys to their fates with Misa.

Back at the main room, I collapse onto the couches, before grabbing and scanning over a file.

‘Let’s see… If we can catch this new Kira, we might be able to throw off some suspicion from Light-kun. What did Ryuk tell me? That Rem had taken Misa-chan’s Death Note and was going to give it to someone who would use it for personal gain… Something like that, wasn’t it? Let’s see…’

I let my thoughts continue on that train for the rest of the day.

I get home, and call goodnight to my parents, before sneaking into the kitchen, grabbing several apples, and bringing them to my room, Ryuk in silent pursuit. Once inside the sanctity of my own room, I leave the apples on my desk for him, before grabbing my pajamas and heading to the shared bathroom to change. I soon crawl into bed, and promptly fall asleep.

I’m awoken from my peaceful slumber by Ryuk shaking me harshly and yelling my name.

“Mirai! Mirai, wake up!” He screams in my ear.

I wave him off me, stretch and yawn, before I ask calmly, “What is it, Ryuk?”

He doesn’t respond to me, rather, he points to my open doorway, which is currently engulfed in flames. The sight gets me to jump out of bed, grab an old, framed picture of Miyoko and I, an overstuffed notebook detailing some of my “constructively aggressive” artworks, and all the pages of the Death Note I had ever gotten, and go to jump out the window.

When I pause at the windowsill, Ryuk starts panicking behind me. “C’mon, Mirai! Move it!”

I stand still a moment longer, trying to think of a way to hide the pages without risking someone else finding them. Suddenly, it hits me, and I take off the back of the picture frame, place all five pages of the Death Note behind the picture, before replacing the back and securing it.

Now ready to leave my burning room, I pray for that demon to take over my body again and give me their athleticism, and jump out the second story window. During the fall, my mind processes the fact that Ryuk had gasped just before I jumped. I hit the ground feet-first, and bend my legs to absorb the shock, before jumping three feet into the air to rid myself of it. I turn around to see Ryuk fly out of my window, and land next to me.

Something occurs to me, and I ask, “Ryuk, why did you bother waking me up? You could’ve just left me to die.”

He laughs. “If you died tonight - you weren’t supposed to, don’t worry -” he reassures me at seeing my suddenly scared expression, “it would’ve left me with no one to entertain me until Light got his memory back.”

I stand straighter at the new information, and try to prod for more. “And how would Light-kun get his memory back?”

“He’d just have to obtain ownership of another Death Note. That’s all.”

“Interesting…” I trail off, and walk to the street, inhumanely calm after jumping out of a burning building. I glance around, but don’t see either of my parents. So I shrug, and wait a minute. As I wait, I think.

‘I wonder if someone’s already called the fire department.’

Two minutes.

‘They’re sure taking their time in getting out.’

Three minutes.

‘Was the fire alarm even working? I don’t hear any blaring…’

My eyes widen as I come to a terrifying realization.

‘Mom and dad are still in there, and I don’t think they know to come out.’

Without a word to the growing mob of neighbors around me, or even to Ryuk, I burst into a full sprint as I run back inside.

I hear him call after me. “Mirai, wait, you idiot! Don’t go back in there!”

Ignoring him, and everyone else, I burst through the front door, and start to choke and cough violently on the smoke. I cover my mouth and nose with the front of my pajama shirt, and run upstairs to my parents’ room. However, the door is jammed, and the flames are licking closer to it. I let the demon take over, and they help me brace myself against the opposite wall, before jumping, and using both feet to kick down the door. It gives with some difficulty, but falls, nonetheless. As the smoke grows more intense, I drop to the floor, and army crawl into the bedroom.

The smoke hangs over me in thick clouds, and I struggle not to breathe in too much. I make my way to the bed, where I kneel to see over it, but I don’t see either of my parents’ forms, just the mussed blankets, thrown out of the way in haste. I drop down to the floor again, and scan the room around me. The smoke is quickly getting closer to the ground, and I don’t see either of my parents.

“Damn it!” I curse, before coughing again. “They have to be downstairs, then.”

I army crawl out of the room and into the hallway as fast as I can, the smoke growing closer and closer to the ground. I finally make it to the stairs, and slide down, head-first. Not a great idea, but I don’t exactly have the time to think of a better way in my tired, stressed, and partially-delirious-from-the-smoke state.

I reach the bottom with little difficulty, but the smoke has gotten even worse down here than it was before, not to mention the heat, it’s like being in the center of a furnace. I steel myself, and make my way to the living room. I’m in the middle of the hallway, army crawling, when a large, wooden beam crashes down directly on top of me, effectively pinning me to the floor.

I then see Ryuk run into my field of view, and when he catches sight of me, he panics. “Oh no, oh no, oh no, Light told me to protect her, and I go and let her get caught under a burning beam. He’s never gonna give me an apple again! Hold on, Mirai, I’ll go drag the firemen here if I have to!”

“No!” I call out, before choking. “You can’t let anyone else know about your presence! The firemen will find me on their own! For now, I just need you to go and hide out for a while, go to the Shinigami world or something, but I can’t have you hanging around me in the hospital, people may get suspicious, and then they’ll suspect me of being Kira, too! Alright? Just go!”

Ryuk nods, before he runs off, and I analyze my situation. ‘I’m trapped under a support beam, in my burning house, without anyone knowing where I am. Am I dying? Possibly.’

Burning debris rains down around me, and I duck my head to avoid most of it. The smoke starts to get to me, and my vision starts to go black. I begin to struggle to hold onto consciousness until the firefighters find me, and I can hear their truck directly outside. I fight a losing battle, clawing to keep myself awake until the firefighters see me.

Suddenly, one of them runs into the hall, directly in front of my field of view, luckily without Ryuk dragging him. I cry out, “Help! Over here!” Before breaking into a coughing fit. The black borders around my eyesight get thicker and thicker, before I black out completely.

I pry open my eyes to inspect my surroundings. There’s not much to see, just a lot of mist and fog. “Hello?!” I yell out. “Is anyone there?!”

“Jeez, I’m right here, no need to shout.” I hear a familiar, feminine voice scold me.

I tense. “You’re the voice I’ve been hearing in my head.”

“Shh, don’t say that in front of other people, they’ll think you’ve gone insane.”

I twist and turn, trying to see where she is, but I see nothing other than the mist. “Where are you? No, scratch that, ‘who are you’ is the more important question.”

“You already know who I am. At least, you know my name.” She talks to me in a condescending tone, with a hint of a smirk.

“I’ve met a lot of people, and I’m terrible with names. Give me a hint?” I ask weakly.

She sighs, frustrated. “You’ve said it accidentally, not to mention seen what I’ve seen. Come on, you’re one of the greatest minds in your world! This should be simple!”

“Said it accidentally… Seen what you’ve seen…” I echo, and I assume my classic thinking pose. “Accident, accident, accident…” My eyes widen. “Kiyohime! The name I accidentally used for my alias, when I meant to say Midori. It just… came out, naturally.”

“Well duh, you’ve been hearing it a few times over the last few months.”

“I’ve heard it in one of my dreams, before. The only information I got out of that, though, was that you have blood-red hair.”

“Correct.” A mane of red appears before me. “Would you like to see the rest of me?”

Suddenly timid, I respond. “Uh, okay…?”

Below the scarlet locks, a deathly-gray woman appears, with black sockets and small red lights for eyes. Although, ignoring those two facts, she looks… remarkably like me. Same facial structure, same body type, hell, even the same hairstyle. Though, she’s wearing a tattered, torn, red silk dress in a dragon-scale pattern that ends at her ankles in shreds, and has white, bony spines running up and down her arms and back, continuing into the train of her dress, where they end two feet behind her. She also has two gray and black bat wings extending from her back, from either side of the talons. Two ribbon-like horns extend from her head, just above each ear, and trail behind her in still motion, not moving, yet appearing to. I turn my attention to her hands, like mine in shape, though covered in red scales, with long, sharp talons coming from each fingernail.

I gasp at her terrifying beauty and elegance, while she simply smiles, revealing razor sharp fangs, and places her right hand on her hip. “It’s a pleasure.”

I nod, no longer scared of her. “Likewise.”

“We’ve got a lot to discuss, and a lot more to explain, and I don’t like to explain anything twice. So sit down, and start listening.” She sighs, running a hand through her hair.

“Let’s start from the beginning, then.” I sit down, lotus position, on the invisible floor below me, and Kiyohime kneels.

“Very beginning?” I nod. “Well, at least we have a few days to talk.”

“What do you mean, a few days?”

“Oh, you’re currently in a small, medically induced coma, and will be for the next… three days? That sounds about right.”

“Uh… alright?” I shove away my panic, and get back on track. “So, beginning?”

“Right. Hold any and all questions until the end, alright?” I nod again. “Well, the day you were born was the day that I died and turned into a Shinigami. However, something happened and interfered with my soul’s passage to the Shinigami world, and it sent me ricocheting back to the human world, and into your tiny body. At that point, I was only a partial Shinigami, and since you weren’t four-hundred and eighty days old yet, I couldn’t kill you. No other Shinigami could, either. So, that ruled out my escape by killing you. Your body tried to compensate for having two souls within it, as no human body is designed to contain more than one soul at a time, and so, it gained the ability to heal extraordinarily quickly when you were in control, and to not be hurt at all when I took control. And by take control, I mean take control of the body and its movements.” She takes a deep breath and pause, before continuing.

“Years went by, and somehow, despite the abnormality of your incredible healing, your powers went unnoticed. About a year in, I tried to leave your body, but I couldn’t fully escape as I was, and still am, strongly tied to you and your soul. I’m able to dwell within the Shinigami world for certain amounts of time, but I’ll still be connected to you. You never heard my thoughts or saw the Shinigami world before because the worlds were practically separated. When that idiot, Ryuk, dropped his Death Note into your world, they became connected again. The more you saw my dreams and heard my thoughts, the stronger the connection between us grew. Up until about two weeks ago, I was still in the Shinigami world, but your body and soul had such a strong pull on me that I was pulled into your world, and your body.” She takes another deep breath.

“At this point, seeing as how strongly attached you are to the Death Note and all the memories that came with it, I doubt I’ll ever be able to leave.”

“So, does that mean you’ll live in my body with me… forever?” I ask, ignoring her rule about saving the questions.

“Almost forever. I’ve been told that you can’t be killed by the Death Note or any human means of death at this point, and we have to wait for your time to be up before you can die. Once you die, I’m supposed to devour the body and merge our souls, which means we’ll share a mind, not too different from what we have now.”

“Huh. Interesting. So, when I die, I’ll essentially become a part of you and become a Shinigami?”

“Most Death Note users become Shinigami anyway; you just have the bonus of already being one.”

“So this means I’m practically invincible?”

“You’ll still feel the pain, but nothing will kill you. You’re too stubborn to die, anyway.”

“Were you the one who protected me a few weeks ago from that guy who was going to rape me?”

“The fact that you asked that without any emotion is almost scary to me. But, yeah, I did.”

“If I can’t die before my numbers hit zero, then why did you bother?”

“The better mental and physical state you’re in when you die, the more power I get from you. So… eat right and exercise daily!”

“Do other Shinigami pick on you for being connected to me?”

“You’re sharp. I should’ve expected that, considering your ability to think ahead fifty steps. Yeah, Shinigami pick on me for being connected to a,” She does air quotes with her hands. “‘Useless, pathetic human.’ Honestly, if any of them met you, they’d probably think you weren’t useless.”

“Uh, thanks…? So, have you been listening to me and my thoughts my entire life?”

“No, just a few times, mainly after Ryuk dropped his Death Note. I managed to usually tune you out, it became like background noise to me.”

We fall into an odd silence. “So…” I try, “what do you do to pass the time?”

She pulls out a small box. “I have a deck of cards.”

“Where’d you get that from?”

“Oh, your parents bought it for you a couple years ago. It’s been sitting on your desk for ages, so I grabbed it once I got trapped in your body a couple weeks ago.”

“Oh, I was wondering where that went. I was using it as my paperweight. Wait, where are we, anyway?”

“Your subconscious.”

“How did you get a deck of cards from the real world into my subconscious?”

“DON’T QUESTION IT.” She yells, voice completely serious.

I cringe back from her outburst, before settling back into my previous position. “So… cards?”

“Yeah. Go Fish? Poker? Blackjack? Rummy? I Doubt It? Strip Poker?”

“Okay, I have a nagging feeling that the dress you’re wearing is made out of actual scales, and you aren’t really wearing it, it’s just a part of your body. So if we played Strip Poker, you’d pull the trick of, ‘Oh, I’m already as naked as I can be.’”

“Well, you saw through that. I’ll have to try harder.”

“Let’s just stick with Blackjack.”

“Fair enough.”

We play countless rounds of Blackjack, Kiyohime beating me more than I beat her.

“Dear god, is this what you’ve done all day, every day, for the last two weeks?” I cry out, falling onto my back after being defeated for the two-hundred-and-seventh time.

“Well, if you’re bored, you could just summon up something else with your imagination.” She suggests, making me shoot up from the ground.

“I can do that?!” I shout in surprise.

“Well duh, this is your subconscious. You can do whatever you want here.”

“Why didn’t you tell me this sooner?!”

“Meh, I saw no reason to tell you.”

“We’ve been playing two-hundred and seventy-six consecutive games of this!”

“Only two-hundred-seventy-six? That’s not that much. My record’s five-thousand-four-hundred-twenty-one.”

“What kind of attention spans do Shinigami have?!”

“Long ones. At least, I do. Some Shinigami are like squirrels, they see something new and chase after it.”

“So… imagine and it shall appear?”

“Something like that.”

I assume my thinking pose, close my eyes, and think of a bunch of paper and pencils. Not three seconds later, I open my eyes to see the aforementioned items floating in front of me. “That’s-now that’s just weird.”

“You find out you were born with two souls, have incredible regenerative powers, can’t be killed, and you find summoning objects in your subconscious weird?”

“Hey, I follow the lesson of ‘Let impossible things become logical’ to the letter. Certainly makes life easier, without all the freak outs. I let the little things slip by that rule, though, keeps life interesting.”

“Alright then. So, paper and pencils?”

“Drawing. Might as well pass the time in a variety of ways.”

Two days, twenty elaborate drawings of a stylized Light and I ruling the world, five card castles, millions of Lucky Stars, and four original violin compositions later, the world around me, including Kiyohime, starts to fade.

I freak out. “Kiyohime! What going on?”

“Relax, moron, you’re just waking up. Be sure to kill lots of criminals!” She calls back, both reassuring and belittling me at once.

“You’re an ass, you know that?”

“I get that a lot!”

We both laugh as my misty subconscious around me fades away, along with my new friend.

BEEP. BEEP. BEEP. BEEP.

‘Dear god, I will destroy whatever machine is making that horrific noise.’

“I think she’s waking up!” I hear a familiar voice exclaim, though I can’t quite place it.

“It’s about time.” A second familiar voice says, much more calmly.

I pry my eyelids open, only to be assaulted by the bright whiteness of the hospital room, and I quickly squeeze my eyes closed again.

I feel someone nudge my shoulder, and I crack open an eyelid again, barely enough to see Light standing over me.

“Wha-” I start, my voice horrifically scratchy and weak from lack of practice.

“Don’t talk, your throat and vocal chords are damaged from the smoke.” Someone else reasons with me, and a glance shows me it’s Ryuzaki.

“Drink this, it’ll help with the dryness of your throat.” Light nudges a glass of water to my lips, and I gulp it down in one breath.

“Thanks.” My voice is still scratchy, but a bit better.

“No problem.” He puts the glass on the stand next to me.

A nurse then comes in, and gives me a smile. “Hello, sweetie. How’re you feeling?”

“Like I was hit by a bus. Then the bus exploded on top of me.” I admit bluntly, not bothering to be nice.

She laughs, though. “That’s an understandable feeling, sweetie. You were trapped under a burning support beam for a while, before the firemen were able to lift it off you.” She turns to Light and Ryuzaki. “Would you two mind waiting outside while I check her vitals?”

“Oh, sure.” Light stands up, and with one last relieved glance at me, he leaves the room with Ryuzaki.

“Such a sweet boyfriend you have.” She remarks with a smile.

“Wh-what?!” I exclaim, my face now burning. “L-Light-kun’s not my b-boyfriend!”

The nurse is smirking now, as she checks the machines. “Then, is the other one your boyfriend?”

“N-no! R-Ryuzaki-kun isn’t my boyfriend, either!”

She laughs outright, and after a moment, I join in. “My name is Hikari Nakamura. I’ll be your nurse for the duration of your stay, Tsukino-san.” She introduces herself after finishing.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Nakamura-san.”

She smiles again, warmly, before going to the door and looking out. “You can come back in, now.” Light and Ryuzaki come back in, and Hikari smiles at me again, before leaving. Light decides to sit on the chair nearest to my hospital bed, while Ryuzaki takes the second nearest.

“Where am I?” I ask the classic questions you’re supposed to ask after you wake up in a new place. “What happened?”

“You’re currently in Sakakibara Memorial Hospital, and we were hoping you could tell us what happened.” Ryuzaki says calmly, as Mr. Yagami leads in the rest of the task force, including Misa. Luckily, she stays quiet.

“I…” I trail off. ‘Damn it, lie lie lie lie lie…’ “I woke up in the middle of the night from the smoke. I left my door open, so it flooded in. I grabbed a picture of my sister and I, and a drawing book, and climbed out the window. I then went to the street to wait for my parents, but after five minutes, I realized that they were still inside, possibly trapped or not even aware of the fire, as the fire alarm hadn’t gone off. So, I did what any moron would do, and I charged back into the house. They weren’t in their bedroom, so I went to check the main room, but… while I was in the hallway… a support beam fell on top of me, pinning me to the floor. I was trapped there for twenty, thirty minutes, before a fireman came. After that, I blacked out, then woke up here. How long was I out?”

“About three days.” Ryuzaki replies, again calm. “These were retrieved from the street outside your house.” He passes me the picture and the notebook, placing both of them on the stand next to the water glass.

“Do you have any idea about what caused the fire?” I ask bluntly.

“Apparently, it was started by faulty wiring.” Aizawa explains. “It started somewhere on the first floor.”

“And what about my parents? Where are they?” Everybody looked away, none of them willing to meet my eye.

I pale considerably, but still laugh. “Heh, guys, seriously, where are my parents?”

The silence in the room becomes unbearable, but Mr. Yagami decides to break it. “I’m sorry, Mirai-san. Your parents didn’t make it out.”

My eyes widen in horror. “What…?”

“They were trapped on the first floor, the smoke got to them first.” He admits sadly, avoiding my eyes.

Tears rise unbidden to my eyes, and I cover my face with my hands. “No, they can’t be dead! They can’t be…” A sob escapes, followed by several more. “How could I have let them… it’s all my fault… if I’d been faster, then I could’ve saved them… I shouldn’t be alive… I should’ve died with them… I should be dead!” My tearful cries overwhelm me. “I should have died…”

The others just let me cry it out, something I’m grateful for.

“What’ll I do now?” I ask out loud, more to myself. “I have nothing anymore, only a picture and a notebook, no home, no family, not even the clothes on my back.” I laugh bitterly.

“You can always move into headquarters, Mirai-chan.” Ryuzaki offers, using an extremely kind tone I’ve never heard him use before. I can only nod, my voice having left me.

Misa comes over, and sits on another nearby chair. “I lost my parents too, Mirai-chan.” I push away my hatred for her, and look up at her. “They were both killed in a robbery about a year ago. I know how you feel right now, like there’s nothing left to live for.” I start to dislike her a little less, but then she continues. “Maybe if you keep going, you’ll find your soulmate, like I found Light-kun!” ‘Oh? Excuse me, positive feelings towards Misa-chan? Yeah, just let me stab you a few times… and… dead.’

‘Now, how much do you want to do the same to Misa?’ I hear Kiyohime snark, and I keep my face neutral.

‘Quite a lot, actually. It would bring me great pleasure.’

‘Pfft, sadist.’

‘You can respond to my thoughts more than once?’

‘Well, since we met in your subconscious, our connection’s a lot stronger.’

‘So, you’ll be able to make snide remarks whenever you want now?’

‘I prefer the term witty.’

Hikari comes back in. “Excuse me, but could you all step outside? I need to discuss some things with Tsukino-san.” The task force files out, but when Light and Ryuzaki hesitate, she smiles. “You two can stay, as I assume you’re the closest thing to family that Tsukino-san has.” They nod, and sit down again, while Hikari closes the door, and sits next to me.

“Now, Tsukino-san, I believe they have told you about your parents?” I nod. “I’m truly sorry for your loss.” She looks apologetic, so I nod again. “Now, about your injuries…” She pulls out a clipboard and chart.

I hear Kiyohime curse. ‘Damn it!’

‘What?’

‘You heal extraordinarily fast, moron! If you have anything major, they’ll be onto you! Do you want to be experimented on?!’

I suppress my sudden anxiety, and pay attention to Hikari. “Now, from what we have here, you’re suffering from smoke inhalation, a broken spine and fractured pelvis, and a large second-degree burn throughout the majority of the lower back.” She turns her attention to me. “You shouldn’t be alive right now. The smoke inhalation alone should have killed you, due to the extended time you were in the fire. The broken spine will have paralyzed you from the waist down, and the burn, had they not pulled you out of the fire soon enough, could easily have, to put it bluntly, fried your insides and killed you. You are a miracle.”

‘Goddamn it, you moron, you just had to run back into the burning building, didn’t you?!’

‘You can scold me later, when there aren’t other people around!’

“I don’t feel like a miracle.” I groan out, before everything she said processes. “Wait, did you say I’m paralyzed from the waist down?”

“You’re likely to be paralyzed from the waist down, at least. It’s highly unlikely that you’ll ever walk again.” She admits, not sugar-coating it.

“Is that so? Is it impossible for me to walk again in my condition?”

“Many would so say, yes. Where would you happen to be going with this?” Hikari inquires.

‘Well, Kiyohime? Will I heal from paralysis?’

‘Oh my god, you’re screwed.’

‘I’ll take that as a yes.’

I take this as a challenge to distract me from my grief. “I’ll walk again. It’s only impossible unless it’s done.”

Kiyohime laughs sarcastically from my subconscious. ‘Considering you and your idiotic drive to prove people wrong, it’ll take less than a week. I give it three days to get you up on your feet, and two more after that to have the feds on your tail.’

‘That almost sounded like you have faith in me, Kiyohime.’

‘Don’t flatter yourself.’

She raises an eyebrow at me. “Well, I wish you the best of luck with that.” She flips a page on her clipboard. “Now, just as a warning, a social worker and a lawyer will be coming by sometime this week to discuss your living arrangements and insurance, so you have that headache to look forward to.” She looks at me with a softer gaze. “For now though, just get plenty of rest. I’ll check in on you later.”

“Thank you.” I call out after her as she leaves, and I quickly settle back into silence. Ryuzaki and Light stay with me, talking about a number of subjects to each other, all the while trying to get me to talk, but I don’t respond to anything.

The day passes without me noticing, and I eventually fall asleep, though not before I see Light and Ryuzaki asleep in their chairs. I show a small smile, grateful for their loyalty. ‘Daww, they’re like little loyal puppies.’

‘You compare your two friends to dogs? Aren’t you the nicest person in the world.’ Kiyohime snipes sarcastically.

‘Pot calling the kettle black.’ I stifle a snicker, before drifting off.

The next day passes much like the first, Hikari comes in to check my vitals, Ryuzaki and Light try to include me in conversation, and I plot on how to walk again.

I wiggle my toes experimentally. When that works fine, with minimum pain, I move on to my ankles. Another success, albeit with more pain, and I move onto my knees. I can bend my legs a little bit, but the pain grows to a point where I stop trying for the day.

The third day comes, along with a social worker.

“Now, regarding your living conditions, as you are not yet legal age, you cannot live on your own without written consent from your parents or guardian. However, given the situation, you are permitted to rent an apartment, provided you can afford it. What are your plans?”

“I’ll be moving in with a few friends of mine.”

He gathers some more various information, and leaves. Once he’s gone, Ryuzaki turns to me. “So, does this mean that you’ll be moving into headquarters?”

“It seems to be the best option for me, unless the invitation is no longer valid?” I leave my voice clear of almost any emotion.

“Of course it isn’t, you’re still welcome to move in.” Light responds, slightly happier that I’m talking again.

I spend the rest of the third day talking to the pair of them, and attempting to move my legs again, with greater success than before.

The lawyer shows up on the fourth day.

“I’ll make this simple, your parents had house insurance, life insurance, the whole deal. So, including everything, the insurance company owes you about… a hundred-twenty-seven million yen.”

My eyes widen to the size of dinner plates.

“Add that to the goose egg your parents left for you in case this ever happened, and you’re a very wealthy young woman. Congratulations, Tsukino-san.”

I blank out for the rest of the day, just moving my legs to the point where it’s obvious that they’re healed.

Day five doesn’t bring another visitor, but it does have me taking a couple steps around the hospital room, and I persuade Light and Ryuzaki to help me get used to walking again. When Hikari comes in, she practically shoves the boys out so she can change the bandages around my back and stomach, during which, she scolds me for being out of bed with a broken spine and pelvis, though she backs off when I tell her that I haven’t felt any pain in days.

She brings in a few mirrors to show me my back, but she gasps when she finally unwinds the bandages. Apparently, the burn had healed extremely quickly, leaving quite a lot of scar tissue, though far too fast to be normal.

“It’s another miracle!” She shrieks.

Day six is full of x-rays on my lower back, and all the doctors agree with Hikari’s proclamation of a miracle, as all the fractures have healed completely. Ryuzaki and Light are by my side throughout all of it.

Day seven brings Matsuda and Misa with a change of clothes for me, a simple sweater and leggings, and I’m released from the hospital. Watari drives all of us back to headquarters, and we split off into our own individual groups. Ryuzaki, and consequentially Light, decide to lead me to the apartments floor, and they guide me to one in particular.

They show me around the flat, pointing out the living room, kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom, before they decide to leave me be. Ryuzaki closes the door behind them, and the full brunt force of everything that’s happened in the last week hits me like a train. I stumble, almost drunkenly, to the bedroom, struggling to hold back tears. I turn off all the lights, close all the blinds and doors, and sit on the bed, head in my hands, just as the waterworks start.

I hear a knock on the door, but I don’t bother getting up to answer it. They enter anyway, and quickly make their way to me, shedding light into the darkened bedroom. They walk in, and sit beside me on either side of the bed. A quick glance informs me that the two intruders are Light and Ryuzaki, again. Light whispers carefully, as if talking to an injured animal, “Mirai-chan, what are you thinking about?”

I’m silent for a moment, letting tears fall silently down my face, while I choose my words carefully. “I-I never got to-to tell my p-parents that I w-was trying to p-protect th-the world.” I choke out, between sobs and gasps, before finally collapsing onto Light, and letting it all out. Initially shocked, he slowly wraps his arms around me.

“Shh… It’s okay… Everything’s okay now…” He murmurs, trying to comfort me as I cry. They stay with me the rest of the day, and just let me cry, before I simply cry myself to sleep.

The next day, I wake up, tucked into the bed. I throw the covers off, quickly make the bed, brush out my hair, and go to the main area. The moment I step into the room, however, Misa blacks my path, smiling like the idiot she is. “Hey Mirai-chan, guess what!”

I try not to roll my eyes, and play along. “What is it, Misa-chan?”

“Today, you and I are going to go shopping all day to get you a new wardrobe!” She squeals.

I smile, trying not to feel infuriated. “That sounds great, Misa-chan! When do we leave?” ‘Dear merciful god, I just want to get back to work!’

She grabs onto my arm, and drags me out the door. “Right now! Come on, everyone already agreed, we are having a girls’ day out!”

She drags me out to the waiting car, before taking me to five different malls and going into all of the stores, a spa for “mani-pedis”, and a salon to get our hair and make-up done. By the time we’re done, we’re lugging about fifty bags each, it’s about five o clock, I feel like a doll, and I’m ready to murder Misa with my bare hands.

On our way back to headquarters, I ask our driver to stop by my house ruins. Misa looks at me, concerned, but I try to reassure her that I won’t have a breakdown. When we get there, all that remains is a burned out skeleton of the house, and a pile of rubble. I get out of the car, and walk to and through the ruins. I’m reminiscing walking through the living room, when my foot hits something metal. I lean down to examine it, and I pick up my mother’s intricate silver collar, embedded with rubies, with a larger ruby hanging on a chain from the center, completely unharmed by the flames or smoke. ‘This was my mother’s treasure.’ I think sadly to myself, as I put it on. I take one last look around to see if anything else survived the heat, nothing had, and I make my way back to the car.

Once inside, Misa immediately notices the collar. “What’s that?” She asks, pointing.

I touch it reverently. “It was my mother’s collar, and her personal treasure. My father bought it for her for their tenth anniversary, and she would wear it every chance she had.”

“It’s beautiful…” She fawns over it the rest of the way back to headquarters.

Once back, we drag everything up to my flat, and somehow manage to get everything inside. Misa then persuades me to watch a movie with her on her floor, in our pajamas, complete with popcorn and hot chocolate. I drift off mid-way through the movie, exhausted from everything today, while still wearing the collar.

Two months pass before I recall the lead Ryuk gave me, and I pass it on to Light. “Hey, do you think Kira’s new puppet could be using their powers for their own gain?”

He raises an eyebrow at me. “What makes you think that?”

I shrug it off. “It’s probably nothing, just… intuition.”

A few hours later, my suggestion comes to fruition.

“Ryuzaki, I know you’re not up to it, but come over here for a second.” Light calls for his friend while typing, and I get up to look over Light’s other shoulder. “Take a close look at this. It can’t be coincidence.” A chart is displayed on the screen. “All of them were prominent Japanese businessmen, CEOs whose companies are leaders in their respective industries, in just over a month, they all died of heart attacks.” He pulls up a line graph. “As expected, there’s been a general downturn in the market, with the exception of Yotsuba. In other words, their deaths have worked in Yotsuba’s favour.” Back to the chart. “Looking back, there’ve been thirteen similar deaths in the past three months. Your thoughts?” He turns to Ryuzaki. “Based on this, I can only conclude that Kira is supporting Yotsuba.”

“It could be, but if what you’re saying is true, we can assume that punishing criminals is not this Kira’s intent.” Ryuzaki agrees.

Light nods, and turns back to the screen. “Right, punishing criminals is a diversion for him. It obscures the fact that he’s actually killing people for the benefit of his company.”

I assume my thinking pose, and conclude, “It’s unlikely that this new Kira would choose to back any particular company, so he is either being bribed by them to kill for them, or works there, possibly-no, probably as one of the higher-ups.”

Light smirks towards Ryuzaki. “Are you feeling a bit more motivated?” Ryuzaki simply smiles, and doesn’t respond.

We investigate further into the possibility of Kira being in Yotsuba, when Mr. Yagami and Mogi return.

“Hey chief!” Matsuda calls out, “Oh, you too, Mogi! I’ve got some great news! This is amazing, I’m not even sure how they figured it out, but Light-kun and Mirai-chan have a theory that Kira is somehow involved in the Yotsuba group! Can you believe it?”

“Yotsuba?” Mr. Yagami questions.

“Uh, yes.” Matsuda replies, now unsure.

Mr. Yagami rests a hand on his shoulder. “That’s probably it. Good work.” He’s silent for a moment, before continuing. “We just spoke with the director, and it seems Kira has offered bribes to a number of politicians. As well, if the NPA doesn’t pursue him, then he won’t kill any of them.” He looks down. “So that’s that. The police caved into him.”

We all gasp in disbelief. ‘That’s all it would’ve taken? Threaten some people and they’ll leave you alone? Why did you use that?!’ Kiyohime asks me, outraged.

‘Simple. Because I’m above threatening innocents.’

“Mogi and I have already made up our minds on this.” Mr. Yagami continues. “Aizawa, Matsuda, if you wish to continue working this case, you’ll have to hand in your letter of resignation to the NPA, just as Mogi and I are going to do. Like it or not, you cannot pursue Kira as a member of the police force anymore.”

“H-hold on a second, chief!” Aizawa objects.

“They made it quite clear.” Mr. Yagami admits. “If you continue to work with L, you’ll be fired. That’s all there is to it.”

“So, then, chief, you’re gonna…” Matsuda trails off.

“In a few hours, I’m no longer going to be your chief.” Mr. Yagami finishes. “However, we all have our own lives. So think it over carefully.”

“That’s true, chief. Especially if you have a family to support.” Matsuda agrees.

“If you want my opinion, you’d be better off as police officers.” Ryuzaki advises. “I was alone when I started this case, although I’m grateful to all of you for staying with me for as long as you have, I know that I can do this by myself. I’ll be sure to visit you at the department and bring you Kira’s head as a reward for all that you’ve sacrificed.”

“Ryuzaki, as long as I’m alive, you won’t be working alone!” Light declares. “You have my word on that.”

I smirk, and jump on the bandwagon. “Don’t think you can get rid of me so easily either, Ryuzaki-kun. I’ll do everything I can to help you bring him to justice!”

“Hmm, that’s right; I’ll have Light-kun and Mirai-chan with me until I catch Kira, so I won’t be alone after all. But as I said, I think the rest of you should remain as police officers.”

“But when you first contacted us, you said you would need the help of the police to solve this case!” Mr. Yagami objects.

“That’s because the police as an organization were still hoping to arrest Kira, they weren’t bowing to him. Besides, with all due respect, there’s a big difference between the help of two or three civilians and the police as an organization. As you said, the police have made their position clear, they don’t want to catch Kira, so let’s just leave it at that.” Ryuzaki explains.

“Well, I suppose what you’re saying makes sense.” Mr. Yagami understands. “If we’re not police officers anymore, we won’t be of much use to you. However, we’re all personally involved in this. All of us have risked our lives to catch Kira, doesn’t that give us the right to decide whether we stay here or return to the police force?”

“Good point.” Ryuzaki nods. “Then by all means, please, make your decision.”

“But chief, wait, if you quit your job with the police force, you’ll be unemployed.” Aizawa reasons. “Even if we do catch Kira, what’re you gonna do after that?”

“After that? I haven’t really thought of it, but I suppose, after we catch Kira…” Mr. Yagami grins. “I’ll have to dust off my résumé.”

“Count me in!” Matsuda agrees, brightly. “I’m gonna quit the police and chase Kira too, chief! And I still have my job as Misa-Misa’s manager! Besides, if I stayed on as a police officer, I’d feel like a total loser!”

“Think before you open your mouth, Matsuda.” Mr. Yagami scolds.

Aizawa debates with himself, before he asks, “Is there any way I could keep my job and help you in my spare time?”

Ryuzaki eats a cherry, before he responds. “There isn’t. If you remain a police officer, then please don’t come back here.”

“But you know I won’t leak any information-”

“I won’t be sharing any of our information. You’re free to pursue Kira on your own, if you want to. But I don’t think it’s fair to your families by giving up your livelihood just to continue this. I can’t see how that’s a good idea.”

“It’s as Ryuzaki says.” Mr. Yagami agrees. “No one here is going to blame you for quitting.”

“Yeah, right. We all understand why you’ve got to do this.” Matsuda encourages.

“But the chief has a family, too.” Aizawa struggles to get out.

“Our situations are completely different.” Mr. Yagami reassures.

“Dammit. To leave now, after all we’ve been through. I said I was prepared to die, if that’s what it took to catch him, and I meant it. What kind of friend would I be to Ukita if I quit now? I became a detective so I could catch the bad guys, not run away!” Aizawa cries out.

“Ryuzaki,” Watari’s signature appears on the screens. “Early on in the investigation, you specifically told me that if a task force member were to lose their job, under any circumstances, I was to make preparation to ensure that their families’ financial future was secure. If you recall, a trust was set aside for that very purpose. I’m a little curious as to why you’re withholding this information.”

We all look at Ryuzaki in various degrees of shock. “This is not the time or place, Watari.” He advises.

“I’m sorry.” Watari apologizes.

“No way!” Matsuda exclaims. “So all this time, we had nothing to worry about? I can’t believe you did that!” He turns to Aizawa. “There you go, Aizawa, isn’t that great news?”

He pauses when he sees Aizawa’s expression. “Ryuzaki, I assume that was some kind of test to determine how committed I was to this task force.” He remarks angrily.

“It’s not like that, Aizawa. Ryuzaki’s just not the type to say things directly, you should know that by now.” Mr. Yagami tries to calm him down.

“No.” Ryuzaki objects. “I was testing you. I wanted to see which one you would choose.”

“Fine then. If I wasn’t sure before, then I am now.” Aizawa decides. “Let’s face it. I wasn’t able to decide right away, like you guys. I was leaning towards going back to the police.” Matsuda tries to dissuade him, but to no avail. “No, I quit! Now I know this for sure, I’ve always hated Ryuzaki. I hate him and his way of doing things!” He goes to storm out.

“That’s too bad, because I like you, Aizawa.” Ryuzaki admits, quietly.

“I also hate the way you’ve always got to have the last word! You insult me, now you say something like that?! That’s it, I’m out of here!”

“Thank you for everything…”

I look at Ryuzaki, concerned. ‘I guess, in his mind, he just lost a friend…’

A few days later, Light has another breakthrough. “I just found another one.” Light calls out. “A general manager of a bank, Yotsuba’s biggest competitor, on September seventh, he slipped on the front steps of his house and died, instantly.”

“September the seventh was a Friday, wasn’t it?” Mr. Yagami asks. “After going over this again, I noticed something, all the deaths that are beneficial to Yotsuba, are concentrated around the weekends.”

“Huh? On the weekends?” Matsuda clears up.

“With the first few victims, the time of death seems to have been random, more recently, they all seem to take place between Friday night and Saturday afternoon.”

“I’m amazed that you even noticed that, chief.” Matsuda praises.

“Matsuda, I thought I told you to stop calling me chief.”

“I’m sorry, but you’ll always be the chief to me.”

“This is a really important clue, dad!” Light praises. “Nice work!”

“Well, you know, I can’t let myself fall behind you, Ryuzaki, and Mirai-chan. After all, the last thing I want is to be dead weight.” Mr. Yagami explains.

We’re all silent for a moment, before Ryuzaki questions, “Is Kira someone from Yotsuba? Or is Kira simply using Yotsuba? I haven’t figured it out yet, but we’ll proceed under the assumption that this is Kira’s doing. We will focus on Yotsuba.”

Mogi brings in a large stack of papers. “This is all of the Yotsuba group’s employees.” He sets it down next to Ryuzaki.

“Thank you very much.” Ryuzaki says as he drags the towering stack in front of him.

“That’s three-hundred-thousand people.” Light appreciates. “How did you put this together so quickly? That’s amazing, Mogi-san!”

“He’s been incredible efficient from the start.” Ryuzaki nods.

“Ryuzaki!” Matsuda stands up. “Please tell me, is there anything I can do to help with the investigation, besides the manager thing?”

“So, you really want to be useful?”

“Yes!”

“Then, could you get me another cup of coffee?” I bite back a snicker. Ryuzaki gestures to the couches. “And for our guests there, as well?”

We all turn to the couches, and the two people there wave.

“Hold on a second, who let them in?” Light asks.

“Those two are the newest members of the task force.” Ryuzaki explains.

“The name’s Aiber.” The blonde man says with a smirk. “I’m a con man, how’s it goin?”

“I’m Wedy, and I’m a thief by trade.” The woman introduces herself.

“A con man and a thief.” Mr. Yagami summarizes.

“That’s right.” Ryuzaki nods. “Aiber is a life-long con man, his unparalleled social skills allow him to befriend and gain the trust of any target. We’ll use him for infiltration. As for Wedy, she’s a thief who specializes in cracking high-end security systems. As proof of that, she was able to enter the building without setting off a single alarm.”

“You expect us to work with criminals?” Mr. Yagami asks, irritated.

“Yes, that is correct, however, these two have never once been caught, so it’s unlikely they’ll be killed by Kira. Think of them as professionals of the underworld.”

“I understand.” Light nods. “To investigate Yotsuba, we’re going to need the help of people like this. Let’s all do our part, and make this happen, okay?” We all voice our agreements.

I go into a corner to lean against the wall and think. ‘So, Ryuzaki-kun is willing to use criminals to get what he wants? I wonder, would he be willing to become a criminal in order to bring about justice? Interesting…’


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