All the perfumes of Arabia

Akako's hands tighten on the scythe. "Why don't you understand how I feel!?" she screams. Never should have asked the mirror, never should have bothered. Never wanted him before she couldn't have him.

He stands poised on his roller-skates, oblivion facing him on all sides. From Akako with her scythe, from Inspector Nakamori edging his way across the tightrope, and of course the empty space that stretches out beneath him. He smiles. It is such a charming smile. One smile and she will forgive him anything. Kaitou Kid opens his mouth to speak...

And Akako's world shatters with a gunshot.

Red blossoms on white and the Kid pitches forward, his tall silk hat ripping away in the wind. He is almost to the Tower, and Akako manages to catch him before he slips sideways to the pavement so far below. He is heavy, and it is awkward, she almost loses her grip and sends them both over the edge. The scythe is gone, somewhere else, forgotten. Her mind is filled with a harsh buzzing sound. White noise. Can't think. Shouldn't think.

Maybe she used a spell. That's how she got him to the firm base of the tower. No, she couldn't have. Spells take concentration to work, and she is distracted to pieces. There is so much blood.

"K..Kaito-kun?" First hesitant, and then desperate. Louder and louder. His shirt is dark with blood. She can't tell at first, where the exit wound is. Then she does, and her eyes well with helpless tears. Her skirt is a bandage, bunched up and pressed against his chest. It is the closest she has ever been to him. She is fiercely determined that this will not be the end.

But the full moon has called the tied, and she is watching him ebb away.

She is babbling. Her icy self confidence shattered, and she is babbling like a baby. "No! No, no....I didn't....I didn't mean....I only wanted...." I only wanted you to love me. I didn't think you'd die. I didn't think it was real. "Don't," she whispers, "I'll fly you to a hospital. I'll protect you from the police. Anything. Don't leave me like this. Don't go, Kaito-kun. Don't die."

There are footsteps behind her. Inspector Nakamori must have found his way across the tightrope. Of course he did, he shot Kaitou Kid. For an incandescent moment Akako is full of righteous anger. This man has dared hurt something precious to her. But it is only an instant because she knows that Nakamori-san's father would never shoot, would never have killed...if it hadn't been for her spell.

The man's knees give way and he lands heavily beside her. The spell has worn off now that it's objective is reached. Isn't it funny how the spell knows he's gone before any of them do? It is enough to make her laugh. But it turns to tears halfway up her throat.

"H-how?" Nakamori asks. He looks at the gun in his hand, and at the figure sprawled across Akako's lap. He looks like he's going to be sick. Of course. She knows that the spell made him do it, but he doesn't. He thinks he is a murderer. She is a murderer.

"Kaito-kun?" he whispers, mutual betrayal in his voice.

The Kid coughs, convulsing in her arms. There is blood staining his teeth. It won't be long now. He opens his eyes and they are so, so blue. She has loved those eyes ever since he refused her chocolate...ever since he looked into the far distance and said that people wanted to be tricked.

"Aoko?" he asks. His eyes are blue and blind.

"I'm right here," Akako says. People want to be tricked. She holds his hand tightly, can barely feel the pressure of his hand against hers. His other hand twists a lock of her hair.

"You're so pretty, Aoko. I never told the prettiest jewel."

Akako is crying harder now. "I love you, Kaito." She doesn't know whether she says this for his sake, Nakamori-san's sake, or her own. For all of them.

His hand falls away. "'m tired."

"It's okay. You can go to sleep," she tells him, "Aoko is right here."

"'m glad," Kaito whispers. He spasms with another cough, but he is so weak. His eyes flutter closed. Akako and the Inspector watch as his breathing hitches, before stopping altogether. The lines of pain smooth out from his face.

The rest is silence.

* * *

Akako wakes with a jerk, sweating and trembling. She has had this dream every night of the full moon since that day. "It didn't happen that way! It didn't!" she screams to herself. Kaitou Kid ended up saving her. He was alive. He was fine. He had forgiven her. It didn't happen like that!!

She turns on the bedside light and something loud on her stereo. There will be no more sleeping for tonight. Akako thinks it's backlash from the spell she tried to unleash. Her price for calling upon Lucifer, for breaking the most basic tenant of the Craft. Do no harm, else do as ye will. She's never had any problems doing as she pleases, but it's the first time she's ever broken the first half.

Akako wonders how long this punishment will last. How many times she'll have to watch Kuroba Kaito die a painful death at her hands? But she is glad she can wake up to reality. A reality where none of it happened. Where he is alive and safe.

For the first time Akako's love isn't selfish.

And maybe that's why, a few weeks later when she sees the English detective catch the Kid in her crystal ball...she decides to do something about it. That night is the full moon, but she sleeps very, very well.

The End.

Author's notes:

1. Gag me with a cast iron spork. I didn't mean to write this, honest. So cliché! But I had absolutely nothing to do at work all day long.

2. The title comes from Macbeth, where Lady Macbeth imagines that her hands are bloodstained and will never come clean again. "All the perfumes of Arabia could not sweeten this little hand." If I remember my quotes correctly. I like the title better than the fic...well, except for that one line. I DO like one sentence in this very, very much.

3. What is it with Kaitou Kid and present tense? I swear this is weirding me out. So this is second in a potential set of MK fics. Present tense and wounded thieves. I think we have our MO. So who's next?

Hakuba: Ahem!
Ann: Ohhhh no, you're going to be all gai if I let you.
Hakuba: Being that you are the one that buys the doujinshi, I don't think you have the right to complain about potential shonen-ai.
Ann: I hate you.
Kaito: Umm...about this "wounded thieves" thing. Can't I just have a head cold or something next time?
Hakuba: Ahh yes. The time honored yaoi traditions of checking for fevers and force-feeding medication.
Kaito: Shot in the head it is then!