AN: This started as a sketch I was drawing in my spare time and mutated beyond control. I so wante to blame this on Perfect Blue, but considering I had most of this written before I watched it, I can't. Fair Warning, This is one of three Halloween fics I have planned. Check my profile for the original picture
Disclaimer: I don't own Detective Conan or Edgar Allen Poe's the Raven. Though if given half the chance, I would go back in time and buy it from him for double what he was paid. ($28 for full rights, W00t)
Hakuba sat in his chair, gazing at the fireplace, determined not to look behind him. It was Schrodinger's cat. As long as he didn't look there was just as much a chance that it wouldn't be there as that it would.
Or it might be there and is pissed at him.
Against his will he felt his mouth open and words pour forth:
"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!--prophet still, if bird or devil!
Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate, yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted--
On this home by horror haunted--tell me truly, I implore:
Is there--is there balm in Gilead?--tell me--tell me I implore!"
From behind him came Kuroba's soulless voice: "Nevermore"
Hakuba sat straight up in bed, heart pounding and cold sweat rolling off his body. "A dream." he told himself. "It was just a dream."
"YOUR FAULT! YOU DID THIS! YOU'RE A HORRIBLE AS THEM!" he heard Koizumi scream again.
"It was his own fault, not mine." The blond muttered to himself, getting out of bed. All he needed was a cup of tea to set him right. While he waited for the water to boil, he booted up his computer. There had been a recent upswing in gang violence. Members of what looked to be a large-scale gang or organization seemed to have pissed the wrong people off. They were found dead in their hangouts, brutally massacred. The only thing linking the crimes (which had been kept out of the papers) was a single dark feather left in the center at the room with the worst carnage, belonging to a raven or a crow. Black Feather. Kuroba.
"Leave no black plume as a token" the detective muttered under his breath. Where had that come from? Probably some poem of some sort, he'd look it up later.
It took every ounce of will power he had not to run into the house and slam the door shut. School had never been something he was overly fond of, but it had been hell since…
Damn it! It was Koizumi's doing. The way she glared at him. She was spreading rumors too, making everyone believe it was his fault. She was probably behind the dreams too!
Hakuba clamped down on that thought hard. He was an intelligent and reasonable man. He wasn't going to go superstitious because his life wasn't peachy. It must be the lack of sleep. A quick nap would do him good.
Not bothering to change out of his school uniform, the exhausted detective collapsed on his bed, desperate for a few hours of quiet sleep.
"Ah distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December
And each separate dying ember wrought it's ghost upon the floor."
He heard Kuroba cackling behind him. "Apparently you don't remember as well as you think. It wasn't December, but it was snowing."
"I have nothing to say to you." The detective insisted.
"Really? You've waited your whole life to gloat at my downfall. Now's your chance to laugh at me for getting what I deserved. And my mother, she was an accomplice after all, so she deserved what she got as well."
"What kind of a monster do you take me for!" shouted the outraged detective.
"I don't know Hakuba. What kind are you?"
"Same MO as before. Victims were attacked by a single person wielding a sharp implement. They were dismembered and disemboweled with the same tool. The attacks have nothing suggesting prior medical knowledge, only pure savagery. This wasn't a paid hit. This was hate."
Hakuba listened, nodding. The killer had struck again the previous evening, leaving almost no clues but plenty of death in his wake.
How is it one person is getting the better of what amounts to a small army. A small armed army. Hakuba wondered.
He was getting sick of this dream, really he was.
"So what are you after my dear little monster." Kuroba purred. "The Truth? No, truth is Kudo's schtick. You want to know why." He chuckled darkly. "If you want to know why, you have to think back to what you'd rather forget."
"What does that have to do with anything?" Hakuba asked heatedly.
"Everything." The phantom purred. "Are you afraid of the truth?"
The room seemed to twist and Hakuba found himself on the floor. "Kuroba where are you!"
"Behind you as always. I'll be here to you finally turn around."
Hakuba squared his shoulders and looked at the armchair. He saw himself sitting in it, looking through a book on poetry. Or to be more precise Poe-etry.
The clock on the mantle chimed midnight. At the same time a small tapping was heard.
The standing Hakuba froze while the one in the armchair chuckled.
'Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
" 'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door;
Only this, and nothing more."' He recited fondly, turning another page of the book.
Both Hakubas turned to see none other the Kid standing in their doorway, slightly damp from the light flurry of snow outside.
The one in the chair rose angrily. "What the hell are you doing here?"
The unflappable poker face smirked. "I need your help detective."
"Why the bloody hell should I help you?"
"Because there are worse thing in the night than me. And they're after this." Dangling from the thief's fingers was his latest heist, a gold necklace with a large ruby embedded in it. "They're on my trail and I don't have time to get to Kudo."
"So the so-called great detective is working for a thief now?"
"Hardly," there was definitely a bit of distaste in the thief's voice. "But he understands the concept of the lesser of two evils. And that no amount of jewels amount to the same sin as stealing life."
"I won't help a thief!"
Kid's eyes harded. "Then I'll be on my way." He lifted the pendant to his mouth and swallowed it. "I won't let them have it." And as suddenly as he arrived, he was gone.
The Hakuba who had been arguing sat back in his chair with a huff. The other was frozen for another moment before he ran to the window. "Don't go home, it's a trap!" he cried into the night. "They're waiting there for you! Your mother's already dead! They're going to smash in your skull and cut the jewel from your stomach! Come back!"
The room dissolved into darkness and Hakuba collapsed. "Come back..."
He heard a voice crying behind him. He turned around and saw what appeared to be a four year old Kuroba crying.
"They killed my Daddy," sobbed the child. "That's why I did it. I wanted to lure them out so Uncle Nakamori could catch them. I didn't want them to steal anyone else's daddy."
The child looked up at him and Hakuba was shocked to realize he had no eyes. "Why did you let them kill me?"
Once again Hakuba woke up drenched in sweat and breathing heavily, trying to understand the dream he just had.
"I'm going mad," he whispered in wonderment.
The half brit snapped to attention. "Terribly sorry. What was that?"
Nakmori-keibu smiled sadly, the only way he did smile recently. "Go home Hakuba. You need some rest."
Hakuba shot the inspector a hard look. "You haven't been sleeping well yourself." He said, noting the dark bags under Nakamori's eyes. "How's Aoko coping?"
"She still won't leave her room. Says she doesn't want to look a world without Kaito in it." The older man sighed. "I just wish…I wish there was something I could have done. Help I could have given. He was like a son to me. It was like losing Toichi all over again."
"Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there,
Wondering, Fearing, Doubting..."
Hakuba stood in front of the black expanse.
"I'm sick of this."
"You've said as much before."
"I'm sick of wondering, of fearing, of doubting."
"You don't have the courage to do otherwise."
"Yes I do." Hakuba whirled around.
Nothing, just the abyss stretching in front of him.
Suddenly he heard the voice of the four-year old Kuroba calling to him "Look out!"
Before he could react he was broad-sided by a black blur. When his eyes could focus again Kuroba was on top of him. His once nimble fingers had become white talons, the once cheerful eyes blank. The specter was dressed loosely in black with sleeves that mimicked wings, blood dripping down his face.
"Leave him alone," The child Kuroba latched on to older one's neck, empty sockets locking with Hakuba's eyes. "You have to fight the Raven. You made a mistake; that was all. You don't deserve..."
The larger Kuroba grabbed the child with one taloned hand and flung him aside.
"Leave him ALONE!" screamed Hakuba, pushing the Raven off and on to his back. The black clad figure tried to push him off but Hakuba was larger. The two clawed at each other until Hakuba noticed the Raven's face was starting to develop little tears like a mask. With new found determination he ripped at the face until half was clear.
"No. NO!" screamed Hakuba, launching himself off the Raven and as far away as he could get.
The Raven, half his face Kuroba's, the torn half Hakuba's, grinned. "Yes."
"Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend" Hakuba screamed, upstarting.
"Get thee back into thy tempest and the nights Plutonian shore.
Leave no black plume as a token of the LIE thy soul hath spoken.
Leave my loneliness unbroken, quit the bust above my door.
TAKE THY BEAK FROM OUT MY HEART AND TAKE THY FORM FROM OFF MY DOOR"
Gentle as a lover's kiss the Raven glided over to the cringing detective he whispered one word in his ear.
A whole warehouse full of crimescene, joy. Nakamori was driving as fast as he could toward the slasher's latest masterpiece. According to the person who called it in, the perp was still there so maybe they could finally stop the bastard.
"I tried to save him."
Nakamori abruptly turned his head to the small child that had just appeared next to him. A very familiar looking child with no eyes.
"I tried to tell him that the Raven wasn't real but he wouldn't listen." The child - Kaito? - vanished without a trace, as though he was never there to begin with.
"Shit!" cursed Nakamori. He was really coming apart.
"Well, why the hell are we all standing around?" Nakamori demanded as he arrived on the crimescene. There were at least two dozen other officers there, but no one had entered the building.
A braver officer swallowed. "Sir I think…I think you need to see this for yourself." He lead Nakamori inside the warehouse.
"No…" whispered the inspector, unable to take in what he was seeing.
The carnage was just as bad as the previous cases. The only difference was that the killer was still there, having turned his knife on himself. Next to the body laid a shattered gold and ruby pendant and a message written in blood. The killer's blood. Hakuba Saguru's blood.
Nakamori tore his eyes away from the teen's body, unwilling to see either Hakuba's dead body, blood splattered over his face, or the familiar white suit he was wearing.
Instead he looked at the killer's final message hoping to find...something...to explain this nightmare.
And the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, STILL IS SITTING
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming.
And the lamplight o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted---Nevermore!