AN: Tell me if the 1st person works... I was cautious about it and if you guys like this enough I just might write more to it...
The woman in a stunning blue dress sat across from me at the restaurant. Not across the room. Not across from me while dinning with a group of people.
No, just dining with me.
She put down her fork.
Usually this natural movement would not have worried me except that there were two things wrong with the picture. She was not done eating and she had been silent all evening.
It wasn't exactly as if this was a sure sign that she was mad.
No, oh no. I haven't done anything in the past few days to make her angry. Nothing at all, so why should she be giving me a cold shoulder?
She picked up her champagne flute and took a sip.
Then she set it down.
"Kogoro, we have to talk."
"Umm, Eri? Is this really the best place? After all it is our 19th wedding anniversary, do we really have to talk about this now and spoil the atmosphere?"
I gulped down the margarita and tried to continue eating.
Except she wouldn't let me.
"Really? Is our relationship so strained that we can't get along and talk in a public place about… whatever."
"It's not that it's strained…." I gasped the air for a better word, "It's fragile."
"Fragile?" she repeated.
"Fragile," I smiled trying not to bang my head on the table.
I had to wonder if it was true that all that I only had so many brain cells left, as Ran said everyday that she saw me. Eri was definitely going to kill me for that one.
"I'll excuse that comment for now, considering that one of us has to be the mature one."
I choked at that comment.
"Which is exactly why you've just made that statement."
"I… uh," I can't win with her.
"So what is it that you want to talk about then?"
Eri looked at me wide eyed. "She hasn't told you?"
"Really?" her eyes suddenly caught that rare glint of mischievousness, "Couldn't tell her father."
"Who's this boy she's getting married to?" I demanded.
"Why, you know him Kogoro."
I sat still. I'm a bad detective. I know it. But even I have my suspicions as to why I've been solving cases over that past year. I'm not that stupid.
"Kudo Shinichi," I mumbled.
"That's right." She smiled at me.
I froze. She hadn't smiled at me like that in a very long time. A very long time.
"So why have you been giving me the cold shoulder all evening?"
"I haven't given you the cold shoulder."
"You hadn't said anything all evening until you said we have to talk. And it seems to me that Ran getting married, though very important, is not what you wanted to talk about."
"There's nothing else."
"Do you not want to be here?"
"No, this place is great."
"Since when has that date still meant to me any more?"
"And fate has made it be that every year since we have split that we see each other on our anniversary, even if it's just from afar?"
"A strong force."
"I thought detectives were above those philosophical beliefs."
"A little bit of everything."
Eri laughed and the evening continued with us bickering lightly back and forth laughing when the other said something stupid. Joking, having fun…
"And then the defendant goes on the stand…"
"What was that lawyer on?"
"I know!" exclaimed Eri as she took another sip of her drink, "Well from there I nailed him."
"Good job honey! The best lawyer in Japan! Queen of the courtroom, Kisaski Eri!"
The mood calmed down some from there as we realized the wine bottle was nearly empty, how late it was getting and just how much fun we must have been having.
Then I even had to go do the stupidest thing I could have done.
"Why didn't you take my name?"
Eri smiled, "Wasn't it obvious? I couldn't be taken seriously if I was a housewife."
"Yeah… but you're my wife. I would have made sure that you were."
"Yes. Cause I knew the day of your first case, you were the best."
Eri blushed, "You never told me that!... but wait… you weren't…"
"I went. I was there."
"Why else? To see you…"
"Oh… but why didn't you say anything?"
"Cause I saw what you could do… and having me around… and Ran… we didn't exactly make your career start off easy. They had you doing family court before you moved out for god's sake."
"But… It wasn't like that."
"Trust me Eri, I saw you enough to know where that fire came from."
I took in a deep breath, I hadn't really been planning this tonight as the night but…
"You know how much of a hard time Ran and Shinichi have had over that last year. Getting over… a lot…"
"Him being turned into a kid didn't exactly help."
"Yeah, the point is that they've gotten past that…. And now they're getting married."
Eri smiled as I said that last part in disbelief.
"Why do you think I asked you out tonight Eri?"
Eri tried her best to hide her blush, "Because you didn't think that fate would make it for us this time…"
God she set that up for me too easy…
"I thought we'd make our own fate," I reached for her hand, "Together….
"I'm sorry about before. And everything I've done…. I've been a jerk to you.
"And with Ran moving out soon, who will cook for me as good as you do? Ran's cooking has never been quite up there with you anyway.
"It is the perfect day."
Eri smiled and began to laugh... which wasn't exactly encouraging for me.
"What's so funny?"
She put her purse on the table and pulled out an md player.
"Put that in your ear," she said as she pointed to the ear phone.
During that time I was extremely confused, I soon found out why she was laughing…
"Sorry Eri… I knew that you could prove me innocent. Oh yeah I'm tired of Ran's cooking… I miss that special flavor of your cooking… so isn't it time that you came back? We'll start over… and today is the anniversary of our wedding day… It's the perfect time… Aren't you listening!"
I believe that my face was in shock at that moment.
"You had that recorded?" I finally croaked.
"Muhumm… I take it with me everywhere."
Wait… she takes it everywhere with her?
"So what do you say?"
"I don't know…"
Angry was an understatement for me at that moment.
"Well which is it woman! I've asked you this twice and the first time you made it seem as if you hadn't heard a thing!
"I love you. Do I have to make it clearer? I asked you out tonight as a way for us to start seeing each other again. I assumed because you said yes that you were just waiting for me to start things. I'm tired of waiting. I want you back because you have been the only one for me.
"There's never been anyone else. If I saw anyone it was because I was feeling particularly spiteful that evening as you often are!"
"Spiteful! You don't even know what spiteful is. You're more acquainted with drunk."
"That was uncalled for. You know, because I sure Ran told you and jumped for joy doing it, that I'm limited to three drinks a week.
"You're still a pervert."
"Every guy is. But never mind. It doesn't matter. Do you think I would be standing here trying to convince you to come home with me."
"That doesn't change the fact that you did what you did."
"But all of that doesn't change how I feel about you. I'm tired. I want you back. And I don't want to hear a no come from your mouth because the way I'm feeling I'm ready to drag you home!"
"Then please do. I'm rather tired of hearing you put out your case. I just wanted to be sure that you were sincere."
"You know I'm never sincere unless I say things twice."
"Exactly. Which is what you just did."
"Well then," I reached for her hand, "Are you ready?"
"Why not? The worst that can happen is that we'll wake up and regret half of this when we yell at each other tomorrow."
"Oh well you don't have to worry about that?"
Since our brushes with death had increased, though they have been insured to stop, I installed several new locks on the door, none of which Eri had the key to. Which only angered her further the next morning when I exclaimed that she didn't have to make breakfast in bed and that I was planning to take her out to breakfast. She then called me ungrateful and ran for the living room in my shirt. Fortunately, as I planned, she couldn't get the door open. Forcing us to talk and finally resolve some issues…
I really hadn't seen that last one coming.