Kaito slept a bit when he got home. It was about midnight and he felt he needed some shut-eye.

The thing is… when you have a heist tomorrow it really is hard to sleep the night before.

So he was out roaming a bit in the cold fresh powdery snow when he coincidentally came by the Mouri Detective agency.

As he made his way to the icy roof he noticed the lovers asleep in bed. Nothing x-rated of course… just asleep.

He found a spot in a tree outside their window and watched.

He noticed some movement inside.

He had been sure he hadn't made a sound but sure enough there was Mouri Kogoro entering the room and just glaring at Shinichi.

OI! And I thought Nakamori had a temper!

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File. 8 - The Last Chance

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Nakamori Aoko woke up Saturday morning to find the air fresh and snow on the ground.

Her head ached a bit…

That's it! No more ice cream before bed!

Then she remembered what today was and suddenly all the pain went away as it was replaced by a new feeling.

Excitement and anticipation.

She picked up her cell phone and looked at it.

New Message

She clicked a couple of buttons and put the phone to her ear.

"Hey Aoko it's me. Sorry I had to hang up on you. Well I'll be by around six to give you your costume and pick you up okay? Talk to you later."

Aoko's heart fell for a second until she realized the message was still playing.

"Oh… and I uh… didn't forget what we were talking about, okay? Bye."

Aoko looked at the time on her cell phone.

It was nine in the morning, meaning that there were still nine more hours until Kaito came.

What am I going on about? It's not as if I'm his girlfriend or anything…

And he hasn't said if he likes me or not!

But he might say something tonight, right?

"Well I can't exactly get my hopes up can I?" she said to her reflection in the mirror.

Cause it'll hurt… if he doesn't… after all this.

Aoko decided it best after a while not to linger on any depressing feelings and if whatever happened, it happened.

She dressed in an old pair of jeans and a t-shirt, brushed her teeth, pulled up her hair and grabbed her mop.

It was time to get some frustrations out on the house.

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Kaito looked at his watch.

Noon time.

The cell phone in his pocket vibrated.

"Hello."

"Kid?"

"Ran-chan! What are you doing? I gave this cell phone to Shinichi-kun."

"Kai-"

"Not over the phone!"

"Are you having identity problems?" Ran asked with her own tantei-air, "You sound like Shinichi more than usual."

"Only to make sure I have your help. No actually, I think this might be my real voice. I've been messing with voices for so long I forget which one it is."

"All right then. Is this what you meant the other day?"

"Okay you got me."

"It's good you feel like being honest. I assume you want to meet us correct?"

"Yeah…"

"Okay then, where do we meet?"

"Uh… I think Kudo's house is safe enough. Unless you'd like to meet at Agasa's?"

He heard the whispering in the background.

"He says Agasa's is fine. And Kid, we want answers okay? Remember Ran-neechan can be scary."

"I know. Trust me, I remember."

"Okay," her voice light and sweet, "We'll be there in half an hour."

"Got it, oh and tell Shinichi-kun to check his answering machine. It's so careless that he doesn't check his messages.

"Kid…"

"Yes Ran-chan…" asked Kaito scared.

"Don't insult my fiancé. Okay?"

"Yes… uh, miss."

"Thank you, good-bye."

With that the line went dead.

Only because she reminds me of Aoko…

He sighed.

He had a lot of work to do still.

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Ai sat in front of the television. She felt numb and a bit tired.

It probably had something to do with not sleeping for the past two days.

She knew how much Kaito needed Kudo as himself and in coming out with the temporary antidote she had pushed herself to her limits.

This would be a golden opportunity to take them down, or at least a good portion of them.

But the best part would be that it would look like Kid did it.

Kid did everything.

They would not see Kudo Shinichi there.

They wouldn't even dream that the real Kudo Shinichi was still alive.

Her cell phone rang.

"Hello, Haibara speaking."

"Hey, it's me."

"What's going on?"

"It seems like everything will be going fine. They should be arriving in awhile."

"Is that all you called me for?" she asked annoyed.

"Yeah, were you sleeping?"

"Yes, but that doesn't matter right now does it?"

"Yes. It does. I'll be needing your help tonight. So rest up okay?"

"You owe me!"

"Okay… seems like I owe everyone something these days. See you later."

"Bye!"

She dozed off in her thoughts, wondering what he had decided at the last minute for her to do until she heard the footsteps.

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The afternoon had gone by quickly. Before Aoko knew it it was already four. She looked through the house and everything was sparkling clean. Then she realized how icky she felt and decided a nice long bath would clear that up.

Feeling satisfied with her state of cleanliness she put on a robe and detangled her hair.

She really didn't have anything to do except wait and it didn't seem much fun to start the homework she had while waiting for Kaito.

Resigned to sitting on the couch and watching tv she was surprised to hear the front door opening.

"Aoko, you home?"

"Kaito?"

Kaito walked into Aoko's living room and looked around.

"You're home alone?"

"Uh yeah, what's that?" asked Aoko as she pointed to a large bag and box Kaito was carrying.

"Our costumes and my make-up kit."

"Oh, okay. So what are we going to be?"

"Well I felt at first being Lupin the Third and Fujiko would work great. What with me always all over you and Fujiko not minding to hit him, it works right? But then I realized you can't exactly fill in Fujiko," Kaito ducked a blow to his head, "And that would be a problem so I decided that we be…"

"Tell me it's not Kid and Princess Nakamori!"

Kaito looked at Aoko surprised, "I never repeat a trick! What would make you think that!"

"It seemed like something you really liked."

"Yes, I did like it, but it is not good to repeat things – like mistakes for instance."

Mistakes?

"Anyway," continued Kaito, "We will be going as Arsene Lupin and Ganimard's daughter."

"Eh? He didn't have a daughter!"

"Well I feel it allows for the plot to thicken, and plus," he unzipped the bag, "You get to wear a pretty dress. Now hold still…"

He took out a handkerchief and put it over her head. Somehow, it touched the floor, and as it did Kaito simultaneously pulled it off. Suddenly she was dressed in a green dress, satin and velvet with pearl lining and gold lace trim.

Aoko turned and looked at Kaito.

"I wasn't wearing anything but underwear under that, and now I suddenly find myself in a corset. Care to explain?"

"Not particularly, but look I have pretty shoes that go with the dress!"

He pulled out a pair of heels from the bag that was suddenly very empty.

"These you'll put on as we leave, and now it is time to do you're make-up and hair."

"Stop trying to divert me!"

"Why? It's so easy!" Kaito grinned in delight.

There was nothing better to him than making Aoko nervous. It was probably because he was so nervous around her.

"Now," started Kaito with a more flamboyant air than usual, "I will do your hair and makeup!"

Aoko looked at him confused, "It's not as if it's a big deal… is it?"

"Well… it's complicated."

And with those words, he began on working on taming the wild things that make Aoko's hair Aoko's.

First, he pulled out a spray bottle. Damp hair was easier to work with. He loved feeling his hands through her hair. It was personal and he then felt partly responsible in creating the beauty that would appear later that evening. If he was responsible, he could claim her. That was all he wanted. He became lost in his thoughts as the strands of hair slowly took form. First in a halfie because there was just so much hair. Her hair seemed to be symbolic of her personality. Wild and fiery, but then gentle and cooperative. There seemed to be no limit as to the number of surprises she could pull out on him.

With the remaining part of her hair, he twisted it around the hair-tie in sections creating a bun effect in which he stuck in a white rose.

He stepped back to admire her, how only on her did his imagination work best.

He put down the brush and pulled out a box and opened it.

Shivers ran down Aoko's spine. How intimate and gentle he was with her. Taking every pain that she look just right with no pain to her.

He did this for no one else.

"Close your eyes."

She closed them. She felt him take great care in curling her eyelashes. He caressed her eyelid as he applied the eye shadow. He powdered on the light blush like butterfly kisses.

It was so gentle.

"Open."

She did as requested and looked forward as she noticed that he held the mascara bottle.

The thing came near her eye.

Blink!

"Don't blink! Well… at least nothing got on you."

"Well it's weird!"

"Just look at me okay?"

So she looked at him. It was easy too because somehow as he was applying it he wasn't looking at her eyelashes but at her.

"Good. All done."

He held a mirror up to her and she looked at her reflection. Her eyes glittered and sparkled against the shadow. The gold in her hair glimmered in the light and finally when Kaito pushed her in front of a full length mirror she could see the extent of his work. Her blue eyes shot out beyond the green. Her figure suddenly appeared out of nowhere and she felt like a princess.

"Now, that you're ready I believe I should be getting ready too. Excuse me."

Aoko's head tipped as she watched Kaito enter the bathroom. She heard the window cracked open, the toilet flushed, the water running and then finally the squeak from the door announcing that he was emerging from the bathroom.

His hair was still unmanageable for the most part, done back, but he had finally managed for some of it to stay down.

His old-fashioned suit looked like something from France, as it should have, and he wore it well. The gold cuff links, the pocket-watch, the black suit jacket and pants over the white shirt. Over the jacket was a cape with red lining. He wore a silver monocle and held in his right hand a top hat; all of it made him look vaguely like another 'gentleman thief.'

"You… look nice," said Aoko finally.

"Eh… thanks but you look nicer," replied Kaito, he looked at his pocket-watch, "It's six-thirty, do you want to start walking over?"

"Ummm, sure."

It was funny, before they headed out the door Kaito suddenly had the look of "oh yeah!" and went back to the empty bag in the living room. He stuck his entire arm inside the bag and then pulled out a small pouch purse that held a fan, an umbrella and a furry shawl that matched Aoko's dress.

"So you don't get wet, or cold… and if you want to hold anything," he said as he placed the furry shawl over her shoulders and slipped the pouch onto her wrist.

They stepped outside and as he opened the umbrella for her he put on the top hat.

"Ready?" he asked softly.

"Yes."

He held out his bent arm to her. She looked at it confused.

"You're supposed to hold onto to it."

"Oh!" she blushed and then put her hand through.

"And now you are a lady," he whispered.

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-Earlier-

"You're actually going to do this?"

"It's the only way."

"You can over-exert yourself. For all you know the antidote might just fail on you right then and there. Then what are you going to do? Imagine how Kaito will react when he hears…"

"Nothing's going to happen. I've felt perfectly fine since yesterday."

"Yes after that nice fainting spell which allowed Ran to find out everything."

"She knew a good chunk to begin with."

"How does she feel knowing that you're going to do this?"

"Surprisingly she's taken it rather well."

"She has faith that you can do it. I mean if you've been deceiving her for this long, it'll be easy to take on another identity and just fool the world again won't it."

Shinichi stayed silent.

"I'm sorry," said Ai, "You didn't deserve that."

"It was hard, but if this can help Ran and I can be free then I won't care how it's done as long as it's done."

"You could draw them out by calling them. Ensure they'll be there."

"Kaito took care of that already with the notice. The jewel itself screams Pandora."

"Then good luck…"

"Don't worry, I got enough 'training' and apparently I do have some skills."

"It might not be enough."

"So what if anyone notices he's just a little off today."

"You'll still need it…"

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"My precious silver bullet…"

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Aoko looked at Kaito. There was something calm about him tonight. He seemed so at ease with himself as if everything would go just as he wanted it.

And hopefully that would be the same way that she wanted it.

"You want to dance right?" Kaito was looking straight at her.

"OH! Yeah," she put down her drink.

They had been talking since they left the house about everything under the sun and they seemed so at ease with each other it wasn't until they finally fell silent for the first time had the thought of dancing occurred to either of them.

He took her hand and led her to the dance floor.

Even though it wasn't that slow of a song he held her less than half a foot from him.

"Thank you Kaito."

And he blushed.

-Finito-

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AN: So who else is wondering exactly what the heck is going on around here? Well don't worry we've still got lot's of stuff to go through even if this is the end to "The Dance." Look out for a quick one shot of Hakuba and Akako's side and then well get the heist going.

Thank you all for reading, I hope you enjoyed it. Review on any questions you have and I'll be glad to answer them.