Warning: Both disclaimer and story include spoilers up to and including volume 7! After that, not even I know what happens, but if you haven't read volume 7, and don't want to know major spoilers – do NOT read. If you don't mind spoilers or have already read, then please go ahead

FIRST OF ALL! AN apology to ALL my readers! I'm So VERYVERYVERYVERYVERYVERYVERY sorry that I haven't updated earlier! I'm ashamed of myself! I shouldn't try and use excuses, but I'll explain what has kept me.

First of all, during the time chapter 13 was posted, I had TONS of assignments, projects and essays for school. I had 8 NEW ones after that, for the last week of the term. Terribly annoying. After that, my entire family (including me) went on Vacation to the US for three weeks. No writing there either. When I returned, I had to start making preparations.

For what, you wonder?

Well, for the reason I am currently in Japan. After receiving a scholarship for 4 months of study here, I had a lot to fix with my Visa, applications and stuff like that. And then I got to Japan, in mid-August, and had to get myself settled and shit. Then, three days ago (September 25th), I decided that NOW it really was the time to finish this bloody chapter.

And I did. So I'm rather proud of myself. At any rate!

In this chapter some more stuff is revealed, both to Raito and to people around him (hmmmm…?)

Read to find out! Thank you for (even more) of your time, but on to the story, right?

Disclaimer: I do not own Death Note or any of its Characters. If I did, L would never have died and There would've been a lot more yaoi laugh

Summary: In the year 2010, Kira's will has almost become the law. Raito has no more competition as the chief inspector of the NPA. Even if the role of 'L' was relinquished a year earlier, at the same time as Near and Mello got wiped from history, he has no problem, since he holds the entire police force of Japan, as well as well as the role of the worlds 'saviour', Kira. There are slight complications with the now upcoming discussions about disbanding the police, but he doesn't see it as a long-term problem.

Everything seems to be going fine, up until Friday the thirteenth of August, when something pretty unpredictable happens. One of the newly dead criminals, who got killed by Kira's judgement, suddenly reawakens on the hospital, three hours after her death. Shocked at this information, Raito decides to get information from the woman. But she has no memories of her life whatsoever, only her name, age and a cryptic phrase; "Once is once – but everyone gains a second chance."

Deciding to go home to think the entire situation over, he finds another shocking surprise waiting. For if a woman who has been dead can reawaken… then why couldn't also someone else?

Warnings: Yaoi (malexmale), Violence, Language

Well, with that in mind, why don't we get started? And my dears, please don't forget to review It would make a poor authoresses' day if you could take the time to write a decent review! Tell me what you think

Chapter 14

"…No, that can't be it…" Brown eyes, almost looking amber in the light from the rising sun, narrowed as their owner stared at the piece of paper in his hands. Seeing that the light switched to green, he folded the already heavily worn piece of paper and pushed it into the pocket of his jacket as he crossed the street.

"Sure you don't want my help?" The shinigami behind him asked amusedly, chuckling at his annoyance.

"No. I have full faith for my own ability to solve it. Besides," he glared at the otherworldly being with cold eyes, "I'm still mad at you for forgetting to mention that the shinigami and tenshi were originally the same race."

"But Raito, that was eras ago, you can't honestly believe that I remember such a thing?"

"So it has nothing to do with your obvious discomfort at seeing a tenshi in the human realm?" He asked, in an unfazed tone. A cold wind swept past him and he shivered despite the jacket. He had always hated autumn, and now that they were into October, he felt a lingering annoyance that never truly left his being.

"…" The shinigami didn't answer his question – not that it surprised him – but was instead watching the people around them. And obviously, after that there had to be a switch of topic. "So, two weeks and not a word?"

"It somehow seems that's how it ends up after each meeting." Raito said, soberly. "However, this time he doesn't even answer any email I send."

"Try visiting again?"

"I did, last week, remember? The receptionist said he'd checked out. I have no way of getting to know where he is now." He snorted angrily, at which the shinigami laughed. He didn't understand Ryuk's amusement. Not only was he getting nowhere with figuring out the mark, but he wasn't getting anywhere else either. After the incident with the Shiroku twins, he had sent out a warning to all TV-channels. After another fake report, he'd killed both the apparent culprit – even if the man hadn't killed anyone, he'd still robbed a bank – and the director of the TV-channel.

So naturally, the media had turned more cautious. But the usual reports came in, and he killed them – as usual. Ten the past two weeks.

It wasn't that the crime rate increased – his boredom just did. Or maybe his annoyance – he couldn't really tell them from one another anymore. Or maybe he just did it to try and justify his killing of those two girls…

"You're acting like you're deprived, Raito. You should watch out."

"And this comes from the god of death who is addicted to apples?" The brunet questioned simply. The Shiroku twins haunted him – and he needed them off his mind. In some way or another. So if killing more people helped, then he killed more people. But he was still feeling annoyed. As he hadn't gotten any time to speak to the detective, he still had the unanswered question in the back of his head.

Why had he flinched away?

He knew it was rather childish to get hung up on it, but he couldn't help but wonder what had happened in the exchange of looks that happened between L and Jyiva, which had somehow resulted in Ryuzaki flinching away at a simple touch of Raito's hand. Raito never got to know why, so he didn't understand it.

And Yagami Raito hated things he couldn't understand.

Like the mark. He crumpled the folded paper tightly in his hand, still pushed deep into his pocket. Why couldn't he figure it out? It seemed as if he was overlooking something. But what?

The entire thing was ridiculous. Yagami Raito never overlooked anything. At least, that was what he kept telling himself. But lately it had just… begun to run away from him – it was like he was trailing behind and didn't hold his steady grip on the situation. And that was unnerving. Aggravating, even. The last time he had lost control of himself, he was four years old and was learning how to ride his bicycle. It had ended with a lot of bruises and he himself had stubbornly avoided the vehicle for a year.

His problem at the moment was that he couldn't avoid the problem at hand. He had to do something against it. But it was unfamiliar. Had L been a girl he came across, he could just have used his own looks and charm to convince the person that his way was the truth, and the only truth. But L wasn't a girl, and certainly not easily manipulated. If he had been, Raito wouldn't have been in this dilemma now.

He sighed.

"Six times." He blinked up at the shinigami.

"Say what?"

"That's the sixth time you've sighed in a minute. You're really acting like you're suffering from a withdrawal."

"I am not." He snorted. "I am just trying to find a solution for this irritating obstacle."

"If that's how you wish to put it…" Ryuk shrugged. "Even so, what are you being out here at this hour? You're not supposed to be at the office until three hours from now."

"…I didn't really feel like just being at home without anything to do." He said, even though he just made it up in his head that very minute. He had actually gone out to think, but it was hard with that Shinigami looming over him. He had to solve this in some way. "Hey, Ryuk."


"How about I take the bus out to the apple plantation? You leave me alone to think and in return you can fetch as many apples as you want." The shinigami gave him a distrustful look at first, but as he just regarded the look with a calm one of his own, the otherworldly being quickly complied, nodding.

"Sounds like a plan."


"One person." Raito said, calmly, and paid for his ticket. He had never truly understood the concept of these 'tourist spots'. Because, it was only an apple plantation, right? And now people could pay for a ticket, walk around and eat apples. How weird wasn't that?

The shinigami quickly disappeared, as predicted, and Raito sat down beneath one of the trees, out of hearing range from the small cafeteria, but still close enough to hear if something out of the ordinary happened. Closing his eyes, he leaned back to think. He had to part this dilemma into the small problems and solve them one after another.

He had L. That was the main issue. L was the entire reason why his reign couldn't continue as before. And the main problem was his tenshi powers.

He also had the mark – which plays an important part in getting rid of the obstacle, which was L's tenshi powers. So he had to figure out the mark, and lurk out what it meant, and force L to break the contract.

Thirdly, he had Jyiva. And Jyiva was probably the oddest part of this. He had brought L back to life, gave him the powers of the tenshi in order for L to stop Raito. However, he also provided Raito with small hints to help him destroy the contract that allowed L to try and stop Raito.

He frowned. Jyiva certainly was confusing… Either way.

Fourthly, he had…

Well… himself. And the way he was acting. Sighing softly, he shook his head to himself, glancing up at the branches of the tree. If L was the main issue, then he was the largest problem. Before anything else would go his way, he had to stop these ridiculous things from happening.

Like the kissing… or the way he always seemed to lose his head when the other's eyes gave him that softer, almost open look…

He suddenly halted his thoughts, and shook his head, forcefully. That wasn't what he was supposed to think about. That was certainly not where his mind needed to go. He needed to focus. Maybe his blood sugar was low?

He considered getting something sweet just to raise his energy level – this low concentration had to be because of his blood sugar – but found that he probably wouldn't like it. After all, he didn't enjoy sweet things…

…Unless of course…

He slapped himself this time, rising up quickly. Coffee. Caffeine would surely help. And a visit to a psychiatrist, because he was going insane – he was sure of it. This couldn't be healthy.

Striding towards the cafeteria with a small scowl on his face, he didn't even apologize when he bumped into a person on his way. He instead kept his gaze on the menu board, wincing at the price but then shrugging and picking up his wallet while waiting for the family in front of him to finish their order.

"…I never thought I'd see Raito-kun in a place like this…" The soft voice stopped him dead in his tracks, and he feared his neck would snap when he quickly turned his head to his right.

L wasn't watching him, instead had his eyes focused on the same menu board that Raito had previously, thumb resting against his lips while his left hand rubbed at his right shoulder. His entire composure seemed… tired, even for being him. Raito noted that the bags under his eyes had deepened slightly, and his eyes weren't as sharp as he remembered them.

"Also, Raito-kun should be more careful when he walks, he almost knocked me to the ground."

He didn't answer, just kept gaping at the raven-haired man, but remembered the person he'd run into. He had been too stern to even notice... After a short while, he managed to wring out a, "what are you doing here?"

"I found out from Yamamoto-san that this place had wonderful apple pie, so I thought I could give it a try." Black eyes cast him one look. "What about Raito-kun?"

"…I wanted Ryuk to leave me alone, so I made a deal with him, so he gets to be here and eat apples." He noticed the family had finished, and went up to the cashier and ordered his coffee, before continuing, "That's the only way to get some time to think."

"I see." Raito received his coffee, and L casually ordered a piece of the damned apple pie, while now rubbing at his neck tiredly. I see? Somehow that was something he didn't expect to hear. Knowing L, the detective would most likely have asked further questions, of the nature of why Raito needed to think, or in which ways Ryuk was a nuisance.

But none of that came.

That was… certainly… a perplexing turn of events. He had actually, in that short amount of time, collected up possible excuses. And now he wouldn't have to use them? What was…?

"I think it's better to sit outside, there is too much noise in here." L commented wistfully, eyeing him as he received the piece of cake.

"…Yes… of course." He said, slowly, and followed the detective out in the newly arrived sunlight. The detective continued by looking around for a place to sit, at which he spoke up. "I had a nice place under a tree a while away."

"…Very well." Still frowning, Raito returned to the tree he had been at, and sat down, lifting the mug to his lips and taking a short sip, before concluding it was still scorching, so he simply held it. He watched the detective out of the corner of his eye as L sat down as well, knees as usually drawn up to his chest, taking an absent bite from the pie, eyes still vacant.

Brown eyes narrowing, Raito took another slow sip, concluding that, yes, something was wrong with the detective. And out of curiosity – and perhaps more – he wanted to know what. But first things first. He needed to know why the other had simply disappeared without a word for two weeks.

"Eru…" He started, pronouncing the other's name slowly, the fact that he was speaking Japanese turning the single letter into a longer sound than the English one should have been.

"It's not your fault." The answer was spoken out softly before he could even ask the question. "I just needed some time for myself. I had some things to sort out."

'Like what?' he wanted to ask, but held the question back. Instead he softly inclined his head in understanding, taking a quiet sip of his coffee. But he couldn't help but continue to watch the other with something akin to worry. Ryuzaki was looking… tired. Even if the bags under his eyes usually showed that he didn't sleep much, and his nature and posture seemed lazy… this was different. There was no determination, something he always saw, in the dark depths of the detective's eyes. Now they were, even more than usually, void of emotion.

And that was… somewhat… frightening. Void of emotion… void of life. He knew the look. He had seen it before. In those very same eyes. But that was a long time ago – he should have forgotten it by now.

But he hadn't. He remembered the open shock, followed by the slow simmering of realization, the hurt of betrayal… even the calm of understanding and then… it all vanished. All life had left those deep black eyes.

It had been a cruel feeling. First, he had gotten to see those eyes filled with emotions, a rare sight indeed… only to watch them all die away. He had wished to see both somewhere during the way, but he had never wanted to see them directly after another.

He had always associated L's death with some sort of victory. Nowadays… the thought of those eyes, void of everything that could show proof of a soul… scared him.

"Is Raito-kun troubled about something?" He blinked and looked up at the other. "He has been looking down into his cup of coffee for some time now."

"…You're one to talk." He retorted, huffing out a soft snort and taking a sip of coffee. "You look completely dead – what happened to you?"

"…" L did not answer at first, merely meeting his gaze soberly. Then, "I wish I could say again that it is not Raito-kun's fault, but then I'd be lying."

"…Excuse me?" He blinked once, the cup almost slipping out of his hand. He quickly regained his grip on the cup before he could make a mess out of his clothes. He firmly gave the other a glare that went unnoticed as Ryuzaki took another bite of his pie.

"Raito-kun is merely being very inconsiderate about my health as he's asking me why I look drained when he should have an idea about why." Black eyes turned to him, and he shivered at the empty void present there. "Especially with the amount of victims he's passed judgement upon within the last two weeks. Either the criminals have heavily increased or Raito-kun is killing without much thought."

"…" He was speechless. What did the other try to say, that because he killed more, he was exhausting the detective? That had to be the most ridiculous… if not…

"You mean that reviving people is that hard for you?"

"Each time, I have to pass into the borderline between life and death. Meaning I have to leave my body in a near-dead state for the time it takes to reawaken the victim." The words were in no way rushed, but they came out monotonously. Almost… almost coldly. "And I can guess that Raito-kun can understand that when waking up from a near-dead state, one's stamina is harshly reduced."

"…I did not know." He murmured, but knew that such an excuse would not be something that would make it undone. Nothing could make his actions undone. Hence why he continued with them. There was simply no way back anyway…

"Of course you didn't." L finished the pie and set the plate down on the grass next to him, hands coming to rest on his knees. "Raito-kun is strangely unknowing about anything outside his own little imaginary perfect world." He almost hissed the word out, as if it was something vile.

"Just drop it, okay?" Raito set down the now empty cup and moved some hair out of his eyes with an annoyed sigh. "We've passed this already. You don't agree with my opinions, and I don't agree with yours. We're stuck in stalemate on our little battle and we keep looping our conversations. Somehow we cannot agree on anything and you have a hard time deciding if you… really want to speak with me or not. You constantly disappear without any trace!" He had almost said something else along the way there, but he had quickly avoided what could have been a fatal slip of tongue. And it would have been very fatal, as he wouldn't have had any idea as to why he would have said it.

L sighed softly, looking away again. "Raito-kun is aggravated."

"Damn straight I am." He snorted again. "This entire thing is getting me more frustrated than some incidents did four years ago."

"Am I correct to assume that he's angry since I didn't speak to him in two weeks?"

"…" He just huffed once, but knew the other would understand that as an affirmative answer.

"I am sorry to have caused you such anxiety." Raito was just about to retort with something stingy when the raven-haired man suddenly put his right hand to the ground, eyes widened slightly. As Raito arched a brow at him, he coughed softly. "I lost my balance…"

Lost his balance? He didn't remember that the detective had lost his balance a single time in the past. "Maybe you shouldn't be sitting like that if you're tired, then." Black eyes gave him an earnest look before L sat back the exact same way as before. "It was just a piece of friendly advice, Ryuzaki."

"Of course it was."

"…" This was… awkward. Maybe he should just switch topic? He opened his mouth, but realized he couldn't come up with anything to say, so he shut it again, just clearing his throat softly. L gave him a short look but then only turned his head away again with a soft snort. Raito's gaze narrowed into a glare. "Now what the hell was that for? You're the one being stubborn and not accepting a simple piece of advice."

"People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones, Raito-kun." Raito gave him a baffled look before the detective continued. "My stubbornness in this issue is hardly anything in comparison to certain other ones."

He wanted to throw out some angry retort to that one, hesitated a moment, and then sneered, "you sure like to get us looped into the same conversation, don't you?" He leaned back against the trunk of the tree and folded his arms behind his head. "Haven't we already cleared out that it won't lead anywhere?"

"We have. However…" L sighed softly, setting one hand to the ground again, "I will continue to bring the issue up until my point drives through your peculiarly thick skull."

Raito arched a brow at the other, but L didn't meet his gaze as he instead kept watching up through the leaves of the tree. Peculiarly thick skull? What the… "You won't succeed. Why can't you just accept my views?"

"Because that would be like signing Raito-kun's death sentence." L said, simply. "And then all my efforts would be in vain. Also, I do not wish to follow a selfish belief such as yours."

"…!" He held in something nasty, simply because he knew it would only throw them into another argument. And he wasn't really in the mood for it. After all, he'd come here to think for a while before heading to the meeting with Matsuda… He glanced at his watch. Still one and a half hour left. And why were they going so awkwardly silent all the time?

Maybe they were just approaching their conversations in the wrong way. Perhaps he was focusing too much on the situation at hand, and that was what caused these arguments. Well, that was quite obvious, as they did have different views on the case. And if the only spoke of it… there was bound to be an argument. So maybe if he tried to approach another subject entirely and then subtly move towards the conflict? "…So what cake did you have for breakfast?"

L twisted his head in Raito's direction, and his face held a look of utter surprise, which made a smile tug at Raito's lips, even if he didn't let it show. Apparently, the question hadn't been expected. However, the detective didn't seem to be shocked for long, instead his facial expression calmed as he answered, "actually, Raito-kun, I did not have cake this morning. I-…"

"Are you trying to tell me that you had real food?" Raito smirked now, knowing that it would be impossible.

The slightest pout crossed Ryuzaki's lips. "I was actually going to say that I had Ice-cream."

"You just crushed my hopes of you eating correctly." Raito said, with a tone of faked hurt.

"I can't even comprehend why Raito-kun has gotten his 'hopes up' when he during the entire time we were chained together must have realized that my diet consist solely of sweets."

"Hope is the last that leaves a human being." He answered simply.

"Indeed it is-" L trailed off, eyes turning upwards again, and Raito groaned inwardly. Had he killed the conversation now? He used to be good at dialogues. And yet, now… he seemed… untactful.

Pondering over this for a while, he folded his arms behind his neck and leaned back against the trunk of the tree, eyes closing. Maybe if he just ignored L, the detective would eventually leave. That way, he could focus on thinking and actually get something thought out. However, there was something that unsettled him, and he cracked one eye open to find the other openly staring at him with that wide gaze of his. "What is it?"

"Raito-kun looks very handsome like that."

He arched a brow. "How do you mean?"

"He looks completely relaxed, almost as if asleep, and the sun through the leaves has quite the interesting effect on the lighting." The detective lifted his hands, thumbs and index fingers creating a frame. "If I was artistically gifted, I would have drawn an image of this scenery."

Snorting softly, adding a slightly amused smirk, Raito closed his eyes again. "You just keep saying the most ridiculous things at times, Ryuzaki."

"I was being serious." L retorted, sounding slightly hurt. "It's really a shame that I never took art courses. I sincerely regret it at this moment."

"Perhaps that is why people normally have cameras for such things."

"Cameras in all honour, but I don't think a photograph would gain the same effect as a drawn picture." Raito resisted a laugh and instead shrugged faintly.

"You could always take a picture and then ask someone to draw it afterwards."

"Raito-kun never fails to impress me with his thoughts at times." He heard the other rise up and cracked one eye open again, feeling slightly confused. "I'll see if someone could be so kind and borrow me a camera."

"You're out of your mind." Raito concluded, staring at the other with both eyes open now.

"You may say so, Raito-kun, but I really want that picture." Raito narrowed his eyes but the look on the other's face showed nothing but sincerity. Sighing deeply, he closed his eyes again.

"Fine. I have a digital one in my briefcase. You may borrow it – if it's so important."

"That is very kind of you." Raito glanced up just in time to see a small smile on the other's face. "But Raito-kun should really stop looking so annoyed now, it destroys the mood."

Snorting shortly, Raito rolled his eyes before complying with Ryuzaki's request, still finding the entire situation abnormally stupid. But he figured it was better to just let the other do what he wished, it would at least give him some more time to think.

There was still the issue of his own behaviour, he concluded, slowly. He really needed to figure himself out. That and the mark. Those were the highest priority right now. Once getting past those points, he knew it would get easier.

He had already heard the first click, but was a bit annoyed now that he had counted up to seven. "Ryuzaki."


"What exactly are you doing?" He cracked one eye open again, glancing at the detective.

"I'm taking pictures from several different angles. That way I have more to choose from later on." L tilted his head slightly, maybe in thought. "Does it aggravate Raito-kun?"

"…Well… no, not really." He hesitated slightly, because he found that he really didn't mind. He didn't mind the other's presence, or the fact that he was shooting photographs of him. It was quite the contrary, and the detective's company was… surprisingly welcome. "Are you done?"

"…Yes… thank you for allowing me to borrow the camera." L flicked the hand holding the camera slightly before returning the item to the briefcase.

"You're very welcome." Raito replied, eyeing the pale man out of the corner of his eyes as L returned to the spot next to him, glancing up at the leaves.

"When does Raito-kun need to leave for the meeting with Matsuda-san?" Raito glanced at his watch.

"In an hour." The detective hummed in affirmation and then, surprisingly, sat down on the ground, even if his knees where still brought up to his chest. Raito only managed to arch a brow before L unexpectedly leaned sideways, head coming to a rest upon the brunet's shoulder. "…?" He made a small inquiring sound in the back of his throat and L sighed softly.

"I hope it doesn't bother Raito-kun that I'm borrowing his shoulder. It would seem that fatigue is catching up with me…" Raito didn't say anything at first, merely hummed in affirmation. He felt strangely awkward, eyes slightly averted, staring absently at the other people.

He noticed a group of young girls, probably around the age of fifteen, sitting in a small circle underneath a tree some bit away, and without thinking about it, he tried reading one of the girls' lips, only because he was curious, since the five girls seemed to be really close. He had never been in a group of friends like that, so he guessed he perhaps… was a bit jealous. Or maybe nostalgic.

Then he blinked, as the girl stopped speaking, green eyes locking on his before he looked away, mortified at have being caught, and slightly afraid that she would tell her friends. Not only about him looking at her… he glanced down at the detective, who with his eyes closed still borrowed his shoulder. Did it look strange…? Would there be five disgusted faces turned his way? He knew that people – even himself – often misjudged situations.

To his mortification, she pointed towards him, and four other heads turned in his general direction. He swallowed, trying to come up with a thousand different reasons for the scene, but then… He blinked, surprised, as they only gave a simultaneous smile and then turned back to each other again, chatting animatedly.

Maybe he was being paranoid. He remembered some girls back in his class when he was in their age. There had been going rumours that one of the boys in the parallel class was going out with a guy, and they had all voiced their obvious disgust to that information.

Perhaps… perhaps that had changed. Then he blinked, realizing where his thoughts were leading. He wasn't homosexual. He frowned deeply and allowed a small scowl to feature his face. That was not what he intended to think. It wasn't like he had to worry about anything like that… Really, why should he?

Just because he-… He cut off his thoughts again, shaking his head.

"Is something the matter, Raito-kun?" He stopped all movements, glancing down at L, watching the other's look change from curiosity to something that could be read as worry.

"N-not at all, I was just thinking… or rather, arguing with myself." He admitted, clearing his throat a bit nervously.

"That was a more violent argumentation with oneself then the ones I usually see, Raito-kun."

"I didn't intend to disturb you."

"It's quite alright – I shouldn't have dozed off in the first place." L sat up again, moving his neck to the side with a small cracking sound before resuming his usual sitting position, hands on top of his knees. "You seem somewhat distracted, you're sure nothing is wrong?"

"As I told you, I'm completely- ouch!" His sentence was clearly cut off as he was hit on the top of his head, probably by a falling object. But the only falling objects around here would be… He glanced down on the ground next to him, picking the red fruit up. "Apple."

L blinked, before they simultaneously looked up.

Ryuk coughed softly, looking slightly nervous but nothing more, and scratched the back of his neck. "Sorry, I dropped it."

"When Newton saw an apple fall, he found, in that slight startle from his contemplation, 'tis said, a mode of proving that the earth turn'd round in a most natural whirl, called gravitation; and this is the sole mortal who could grapple, since Adam, with a fall, or with an apple." L cited, in perfect English, causing Raito to look back at the detective. "Don Juan wrote that in 1821. Most – even if they aren't completely legible – sources claim that Isaac Newton based his research, which would ultimately lead to the world gaining knowledge about gravitation, from seeing an apple fall from a tree. Some even claim it hit his head." A tiny smile accompanied the last sentence, and Raito couldn't help but sport one himself.

"So what are you claiming now?"

"I'm not claiming anything, Raito-kun. If anything, Raito-kun is reading too much into my words and his large self-confidence makes him overanalyze the meaning. I merely remembered that quote upon seeing you get hit by the apple."

"That's what she said." Raito mentioned, adding a teasing tone to his voice as he took a bite of the fruit, hearing the shinigami above them let out something that sounded like a strangled protest. Realizing this wouldn't lead to anything, he rubbed his temple with his right hand, sighing.

"You really seem out of yourself, Raito-kun." L noted, blinking.

"I've been feeling… heavy… lately." He couldn't find a better word for it. He had started to sleep worse, after all – often waking up during the nights – and his paranoia was getting worse again, and it really wasn't helping his head.


"Well, yeah… and since you showed up…" He sighed softly again, taking another bite of the apple. "I haven't been able to focus really – I've felt strangely… restricted."

"Maybe… you've had too much time relaxing." L suggested, shrugging. "First three years of nothing hindering you… then the mild – but short-lived – disturbance of Mello and Near…" He paused for a moment, seeming to get caught in nostalgia for a moment, before continuing, "And since then – there really hasn't been anything going on. Your father resigned, and from the files at the NPA, Mogi got transferred to the FBI headquarters in the US, correct?"

"That's right. And Aizawa moved with his family to Kyoto. He's still working with us, from afar, but only Matsuda has contact with him."

"And you have no one, right? Just you and Ryuk."

"…For the last year, yes."

"Life becomes useless and insipid when we have no longer either friends or enemies."


"Another quote – however I do not know who said it." Black eyes focused on him. "But what I mean is that, since you had no one opposing you anymore, you grew bored. Even if you continued being Kira… you lost a part of the thrill with it. There weren't nearly as many criminals to pass judgement on… and that bored you."

"That still doesn't explain why I would feel restricted now."

"Dullness creates thoughts. Thoughts play with your mind. No doubt you sometimes thought – or rather, wondered – if this was all worth it."

"Worth what?"

"Worth throwing your own happiness away." A tiny smile, even if sad, adorned the other's lips. "I don't think it was your justice that lead it all – it was the fact that you knew people would oppose you – that people would chase you – and you enjoyed the challenge. I think," those piercing eyes locked on his as he silently looked back, "that you were utterly bored from the beginning, and saw this as your resolve to end that boredom."


"But in the end, you started questioning it. And the thoughts that you might be wrong started to tear at you – especially after I returned to this world."

"I didn't start questioning it!" He protested. "I didn't even-"

"Otherwise you wouldn't have been so affected by what I have said." L cut him off, firmly, looking back out over the plantation. "The seeds of doubt were already there – I just forced them to grow."

Raito stared him in disbelief for a moment, before huffing. "So you suggest I'm feeling restricted because I feel burdened by the so-called 'sins' I committed?"

"The truth is…" L mumbled. "I think… that…" Obsidian pools that showed nothing of true emotions, turned against him, and Raito felt for a moment that he was frozen in place, even his breathing seemed to have stopped completely.

"…You are not only bound by the weight of your sins, but also by your guilt and my sacrifices."

"Your sacrifices?" Raito hesitated, as his voice was hardly above a whisper.

"You may not know it yet," L moved as if to rise up, "but I've sacrificed more than you might know for this sake. For your sake."

Raito almost wanted to ask 'for my sake?' but didn't since he knew he'd only sound like a parrot, if he only kept repeating what L said. So instead, to still keep the conversation going, he asked, "Well, I guess I'd get affected easier by 'your sacrifices' if I knew what they were."

"Of course." L mentioned, momentarily pausing. "However, if I'd tell you now, most of what I've done will probably be ruined."

"How do you mean?"

"I would have thought Raito-kun would've understood by now that I can not tell him." Raito frowned in something that he in his mind registered as his – nowadays – usual irritation.

"Of course I've understood that you can't, but not why you can't."

"Because, due to Raito-kun, we are still considered enemies. I do not want to jeopardize my queen since we are in a stalemate. Doing so would only ultimately lead to the loss of Raito-kun's life. You should be thankful."

"But I am not!" Raito growled. "Stop treating me like a child. You may be seven years older than me, but I am an adult."

L stared him for a second before slumping back towards the trunk of the tree, eyes closing. Raito was just about to open his mouth again when he spoke. "A child becomes and adult when he realizes he has a right not only to be right, but also to be wrong." Raito gaped at him for a moment while the black-haired male reopened his eyes and looked at him again. "Thomas Szasz, 1973."

"I don't care who said it!" Raito retorted, an angry scowl appearing on his face.

"Raito-kun is angry because he doesn't like being called a child. However, if you follow what Szasz said – he is still considered one." L nipped his thumb for a second while he waited for a reply. Raito didn't give him one, and so they fell in silence again. What had L meant with that, anyway? He knew he could be wrong – so why would he bring up a quote like that?

Unless, of course, if L meant him being Kira as the 'wrong' here. Then it would make perfect sense – that L didn't want to tell him what he had sacrificed before Raito ended Kira. Then again, that would mean there would never be a conclusion… only if…

He glanced down to his right pocket, knowing that he would have to decipher the mark if he wanted to figure this one out. He lifted his hand to his mouth, taking another bite out of the nearly forgotten apple, the sudden sound breaking the almost awkward silence around them.

His eyes caught sight of his watch, and he blinked and swallowed. "Oh, it would seem I have to leave about now."

"But Raito" He glanced up towards Ryuk, who was devouring yet another apple, hidden carefully from other people's view.

"I mean it – I don't want to be late." He had expected some sort of protest more, but the shinigami gave a small sigh and picked an additional apple to eat. Raito sat up straight and moved as if to stand up, but somehow he seemed to not be functioning correctly, for he stayed seated, even to the point that he frowned at himself.

"Weren't you going to leave, Raito-kun?" L asked, plainly.

"I am." Raito stated, firmly. He rose up, dusting his pants off. "I was just thinking… is there any way I can get in contact with you? Now that you changed hotels…"

"I'm living at Teitou Hotel. Room 413. I'm currently going under the name of Katsuyama Ryuzaki."

"Still sticking with Ryuzaki?"

"I like the name." L answered, still as simply as before. Raito glanced in the detective's direction and noticed that the reason for the other's almost absent answers was that L was currently focusing all his attention on the plate he had put beside him previously. Now, however, it seemed as if he was trying to find every last crumble of the cake, picking up every small piece found and was so absorbed in finding the last remnants of the pie that he didn't even properly eat them. Instead, the small crumbles were stubbornly sticking to both chin and the corners of his lips, and L paid no real attention to them.

Unable to contain the amused chuckle, Raito saw black orbs focus on him, questioning. Kneeling down again, the brunet clarified, still chuckling, "you're a messy eater at times."

"Hn?" L blinked, before seeming to realize what Raito meant, and wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, absently brushing the escaped crumbles off on the grass. He then looked back at the brunet again, almost plainly, but with what could be a quizzical look.

"You still got…" Not able to think quickly enough to make him stop, he reached his right hand out and brushed the last few crumbles of the corner of the other's mouth with his thumb. Then he froze, eyes still locked with the detective's. He had, once again, acted before he thought.

And that was definitely bad. In his book that was very, very bad.

Coughing softly, he retracted his hand and opened his mouth to say something, but halted as his hand was grabbed, swiftly yet gently. Glancing down for only a second to notice the detective's thin fingers wrapped around his right wrist, he quickly moved his eyes back up to meet the detective's, only to find that the opaque pools were directed down towards their hands, almost contemplating. He even lifted his own hand experimentally, watching as Raito didn't make any movement to fight against it.

Raito resisted the urge to arch an eyebrow at the peculiar action, and instead tried to speak up. "Ryuzaki, I really…" but he choked on his breath as the raven-haired man's eyes fluttered close for the split part of a second as he licked the small crumbles from the brunet's thumb.

Eyes widening, Raito found himself straining against the hold that L had on his wrist, but L didn't seem to take any notice of this, black eyes reopening to look at him, still with a mix of curiosity and contemplation. Not breaking their locked gazes, Raito pulled at his hand once more, realizing that L did have a stronger grip that one could have guessed from his looks.

Of course, he'd known that for a long time… but it was a bit unsettling…

Without taking that piercing stare of the brunet, L moved his hand, and gently placed a kiss upon the flat of his palm. Swallowing audibly, Raito made another feeble attempt at retrieving his hand, experiencing another failure as the detective momentarily increased the grip on his wrist, almost up to a hurtful point. Almost as if realizing that he'd hurt the brunet, the grip loosened slightly and a kiss was placed just beneath the first, whereafter another followed, further down towards his wrist.

Raito bit his lower lip, before noticing the detective's grip on his wrist had almost completely disappeared. He quickly snatched his hand from the other, watching as the raven-haired man blinked in slight confusion at him. Despite the thought Raito had about just standing up and leaving, he somehow found himself grabbing hold of L's chin, tilting his head slightly even before he leaned in, eyes already closed the moment their lips connected.

L's response wasn't immediate, but as the brunet almost gently nipped at his lower lip, he yielded, a slightly shaky hand reaching Raito's face, tenderly caressing the skin before moving to his hair, as the detective's lips parted under Raito's own.

The kiss was short-lived, yet Raito felt somewhat at ease as he pulled back, even as he had realized that they had been in a public area and there were people around. It was… strange. He was usually much more careful… He kept his eyes down as he reopened them, though. He felt unwilling to meet the detective's eyes. Why he did not know. "Raito-kun."


"I think you have to leave now if you wish to arrive at the office in time." Raito glanced at his watch and snickered softly.

"I'm already running late."

"…" L paused for a moment. "I'm sorry to have kept you."

"It's not your fault." Raito shook his head, finally looking up, noting from the corner of his eyes how an elderly couple were glaring daggers in their direction, and decided to instead just focus on the detective. "I shouldn't have stalled."

A tiny smile crept onto the other's face. "I'm rather glad you did." Raito started, but then just rolled his eyes.

"Yeah, right. You enjoy seeing me suffer that much?" He snorted softly and stood up.

"I do not know what Raito-kun is talking about:"

"Even if I am at the top of the NPA, that doesn't mean I can come waltzing in late." Raito sighed in faked exasperation while correcting his tie. "But I bet you'll enjoy watching me try to make up an excuse."

"Might, might not." Still smiling quizzically, the detective stood up, absently brushing some stray bangs out of his eyes, a gesture Raito – truth to be told – had never seen. It was strangely… relaxed… for being L. He found himself stopping up for yet another second before clearing his throat.

"Well…uhm… I guess I'll see you around… then."

"Guess so." L shrugged softly and took a look around. "I must thank Ikanashi-san for recommending this place…" Raito narrowed his eyes.

"Wasn't it Yamamoto who had recommended it?"

"…" L halted, not looking at him, gaze focused out in the sky. Raito could almost see the images flashing before the detective's eyes as the raven-haired male sought his memory. "… Right. Of course. My mistake."

Either a mistake or it was all made up from the beginning. "Oh well. I'm already late as it is… so…" he made a faint gesture with his hand and then turned around and headed for the exit. He could hear the shinigami lift from the branches of the tree to follow him.

He never heard any reply from the detective, but as he left the plantation; his cell phone signalled an arrived message. Puzzled, he flipped it open and read the simple line, under a number he did not know.

"At least like this I won't be unavailable"

No sender, but it wasn't needed. A tender smile slid onto his lips without him noticing, as he kept walking, saving the number. He hesitated for a second when he was supposed to write in the name, but then nimbly hit the buttons.


He pressed the button to confirm his choice and then flipped the phone shut, putting it back in his pocket, the smile on his lips turning almost silly.

Ryuk, who had been silently floating behind him, suddenly snickered before starting to sing a song Raito had no idea where he could have learnt it. "Raito and L, sitting in a tree, K-I…"

"Oh shut it!" He growled, so that an old lady who just passed him, talking in her cell phone, suddenly looked up and gave him a scathing look which he ignored. He continued for a little while and listening to the shinigami's laughter before muttering, "as far as I know, the only one sitting in any tree was you. And all you did was eat apples."

Instead of shutting Ryuk up, as had been intended, it only made the shinigami's laughter louder. Infuriated and slightly embarrassed, Raito shoved his hand into his pocket, the other gripping his briefcase harder. Setting his face into an almost angry scowl, he promptly ignored the death god as he headed towards the nearest bus station.


He only wished to have a calm day today, figuring some things out, maybe try to figure out the code again… anything but this.

He had just closed the door to his office and was heading towards his desk when the sound of the door quickly opening and slamming shut met his ears. Placing his briefcase on his desk, he turned his head to meet the face of Hanaya, her expression something between anger and shock.

"Hanaya-san." He said, calmly. "What brings you here?"

"…T-Tell me I did not see what I thought I saw!" She sounded frantic, like a madman holding onto his last piece of sanity, and he arched a brow at her, picking out his pen to sign one of the papers that had been put on his desk.

"Well," he started, the first lines of the Kanji of his surname appearing on the paper as he wrote, "that is entirely depending on what it is you thought you saw, Hanaya-san."

She stood there for a moment, merely gasping for air, and he continued to write. Then, she suddenly hissed in a breath, the words afterwards spilling out of her mouth with the same sort of hiss. "I saw you kissing a man."

The pen cluttered to the surface of the table, scratching a line through the second kanji of his surname, as if to erase it, but he paid it no attention, eyes having darted over to the woman, widened in slight shock. "What!?"

"…I… saw you get on a bus this morning." Hanaya took a breath. "I… wanted to talk to you, so I took the next bus to the same location… and I looked for you when I arrived."

"…" He kept staring at her, her words not really getting through his muddled mind, the gears in his brain frantically trying to make up some sort of explanation.

"You… were talking with someone… so I thought I'd wait until your conversation was over…" Her eyes cast downward, and she sighed. "…and then… well…" She suddenly shook her head. "Tell me I saw it wrong!"

"…Your eyes show nothing more than truth, Hanaya-san… whether you believe it or not is up to your mind." He mumbled, feeling like slapping a hand for his forehead. Slipping like that… could it have turned out any worse?

"…B-But I thought… everyone thought…"

"Thought what?" He asked, bitterly.

"The way you talk with people… the way you constantly seem to try and smile but it's clouded by something entirely else… it… it draws people to you!" She huffed. "People want to come closer – want to understand and support! Want to be the one seeing a real smile for once! And… sometimes it just seems like your hinting… trying to get people closer."

"The only thing I have been hinting is that I'm not interested and that I'm seeing someone." He muttered, ignoring the shinigami behind him as Ryuk had found the situation amusing enough to laugh since the very start. Stupid Shinigami, stupid L, stupid Hanaya…

Stupid himself.

"…yeah… but…" She glared up at him. "As long as it had been a girl, I would have thought I had a chance! You…" She gritted her teeth.

"You should have least have told me you had a boyfriend!"

Inconveniently enough, Matsuda had chosen that very moment to step through the door, whatever greeting he had planned to say stuck on his lips as the door fell shut behind him. A very awkward silence followed in which Raito mentally cursed in every language he knew and more, while Ryuk was now on the floor, seeming to die with laughter.

He was faintly struck with the wonder what L was doing. Probably having a blast and laughing in front of his stupid computer screen. Stupid detective…!

"A-ah…" Matsuda tried starting something but felt silent again as Raito sent him a direct glare which would have killed him, if Kira had the ability of killing with a mere glare. After silencing the man, he turned to Hanaya, who was looking embarrassed, probably realizing she'd done more bad than good.

"Hanaya-san, I am sorry if I offended you in any way… but… we can't speak of this now. If you still want to go through the issue… I have a free hour around two this afternoon." She didn't move and he continued, voice dropping to a colder tone. "…I would like it if you left now."

Surprisingly, she did so without a fuss, and after the door had closed behind her, Matsuda tried to test his luck again. "Ano… Raito-kun."

"One word," he growled, turning his glare to the man, "to my father and I'll feed you to Kira."

"…Of course." The man winced and Raito sighed, drawing a hand through his hair. Well, the damage was already done, as long as he could keep the word from travelling further, he'd just have to play along.

"Well… that's a great start of the day…" He muttered to himself, finishing signing the paper, ignoring the line drawn over the kanji for god, and put the pen down carefully this time. Then, without turning, he spoke up. "You wanted something, right?"

"Uh, yeah… about the papers I left here…"

"Just signed them." He motioned to the papers on the desk.

"…Good." Raito shook his head slowly and went around the desk to sit down. When he noticed Matsuda hadn't left yet, he gave the man a questioning look. "About what Hanaya-san said…"

"I don't want to talk about it." He cut off, not hiding the bitterness in his voice.

"…I figured…" Woah, so he did have something between his ears? "Just… It doesn't matter. To me, Raito-kun is still Raito-kun." Well great, try something less corny?

"I know." He sighed. "I know…"

"…So, do I know him?"

"I already told you I didn't want to talk about it!" He grumbled.

"…Just curious."

"…" He glared at the man, but then sighed. "No, I doubt you do. He's a foreigner."

"Oh…" Matsuda tapped his chin. "That kinda makes sense…" Kinda? Oh really now? Well, he had answered the question so hopefully- "So… why did you start going out with him?"


"I mean, after all you said about the girls being too pushy after Misamisa's death…"

"…" He sighed again, then scratched his neck. "Well... he wasn't pushy… and… well, he was just… there."

"…Mhm… so what do you like about him?" Oh come on Matsuda, GIRLS question their friends about thee sort of things, not Policemen soon turning 31.

Even so, he decided to answer. Hopefully the man would really leave the matter alone once he was satisfied enough. "First of all, he's not clingy, dependant or simply after me for looks." Was Ryuzaki even after him? Doubtfully. "…also… he's smart. He has his standpoints and we can discuss them on a level I can't with anyone else since…"

"…Since Ryuzaki's death." Matsuda filled in, looking sober.

"…Yes." Better to just keep it up, seeming as if this person was not L, after all. That was the point. "So… we… well, match, I guess. Except that we have different viewpoints on some matters, so we argue a lot… but… it's interesting in a way. Takes away the boredom and… it's soothing. To just… be able to discuss the matters and not have to worry about explaining one's reasons for saying things… because he knows… so we merely… keep each other…"

"…Alive, perhaps?" He blinked, looking at the man. "I know you've been… less enthusiastic since Ryuzaki died… and even though you had Misamisa by your side and the case to worry about… you seemed to have lost your spirit. You never share your ideas… and I know it is because you know no one will be able to argue for or against your suggestion since…" He shrugged. "I know I'm not bright, so I just don't match up… but recently, Raito-kun seems to have gotten his spirit back. He's angry again, he's… sometimes smiling to himself… and he's eager to work again, it seems."

"…" Had it really been that way? Wasn't this all a story built up in his head right now to create an illusion? Had Matsuda, of all people, been able to read through him…?

"So whoever this person is, I am glad that he has given Raito-kun his spirit back… and I don't think your father will disapprove… since he's been worried about you too."

"…I'll still kill you if you tell him."

"…Naturally." Matsuda smiled. "Anyway, one last question?"

"I think you've had far too many 'last questions', Matsuda."

"One?" Raito sighed, and waved his hand absently.


"What's his name?"

"…" He glanced out the window for a moment, and then looked back at the man, not realizing the almost nostalgic look on his face. "Lawliet."

"…" Matsuda smiled again. "Well, I should leave these to their appropriate owner." He motioned with the papers. "…I'll see you later."

"You do that-…" He said, watching the man go, and then turned to the shinigami, his expression suddenly one of murder. "What is so damn funny!?"

"You looked like quite the love-struck fool there, Raito." Ryuk laughed, and the brunet frowned. With a frustrated growl, he turned back to his work, only to have his cell phone ring. Flipping it open, he knew who it was without checking the number.

"Do you call me to taunt me too?" He snorted.

"I was merely going to tell you that you talked yourself out of that situation rather well, Raito-kun." But since he could hear the contained laughter in the detective's voice, the brunet groaned.

"Come on! If that was 'talking myself out of it', then you have completely missed out on the point here, Lawliet." He had automatically switched to the other's surname in case Matsuda decided to come back.

"…" The other end was silent for a while before he spoke up. "You know, that name sounds rather nice coming from your lips."

"…Oh shut it." He shook his head and laughed, both out of anger and out of something that could be relief. Somehow it didn't seem all too bad when the façade was just like this. He could use it to stay away from Hanaya, and make Matsuda worry less… and he could laugh at the mere stupidity of it all. "This is all your fault!"

"I'm well aware of the fact, Raito-kun, and I am terribly sorry."


"It's in my nature."

"Yagami-san?" He blinked and pressed the button for the Intercom.


"You have a meeting in ten minutes, if you haven't forgotten."

"I'm on my way." He broke the connection and returned to the call. "You heard, I have to end this call now."

"I understand completely, Raito-kun. Have a good day at work."

"Yeah, it did have a great start, didn't it?" He snorted and hung up, grabbing his briefcase, and then sighed, turning to the shinigami who was holding back laughter, trying to speak up. "…Not a word."

Which of course, led to the shinigami breaking down in hysterical laughter.


"Good morning, Yagami-san!" He returned the greeting with a small nod accompanied by a polite smile as he headed for the elevator, checking his watch to note that he was indeed in time. He didn't know what Matsuda had to talk about and frankly he did not care. He was merely angry with himself. It was now the eighth of October and he still hadn't figured it out.

L's mark, that meant.

Ryuk had found it very funny. Which usually meant that Raito was searching in the wrong direction. And that was annoying. The signs didn't give him anything, they were illogical and strange… There was no way to figure out the message by trying to translate the symbols.

But hell would freeze over before Yagami Raito admitted defeat.

He stepped out of the elevator and immediately received a, "Good morning!" He could hear Matsuda even before he saw him, and turned his head and gave a nod at the man as he closed in. "How are you?"

"…Fine." He gave a small shrug. "Is the meeting room free?"

"Yep. I checked it all!" Matsuda smiled proudly and started walking down the hallway. "Should we start?"

"I doubt you have anything interesting, but very well." He smirked a little as Matsuda gave a nervous laugh at the retort. Somehow the man didn't go quite as much on his nerves as before. He didn't really know why, but somehow the other's idiocy was rather relieving.

No, he was not going soft. Definitely not.

As they turned the next corner, he suddenly found himself eye to eye with Hanaya. She hadn't spoken to him since her outburst a few days earlier, and now she looked frightened as she realized who she'd bumped into. Before he could even try to say anything, she had fled down the corridor.

It was not like he cared, but it was annoying and people would soon start asking questions about what he did.

But somehow Matsuda read his expression wrongly and said, in an attempt to be a comfort, "it's not your fault, Raito-kun. She'll think it over and she'll calm down."

"…" He sighed and kept going, the older man following.

"Oh, and speaking of Hanaya not talking to you…" Matsuda quickened his steps to come up next to him. "How's your love life?"

Raito pretended to not have heard him, pushing the door to the meeting room open with ease and going inside.

"I know, it's none of my business, but…"

"We haven't spoken in a while." He said, simply, sitting down and taking out some papers from his briefcase.

"…Why not?"

"No reason, nothing's come up…" Well, that was the truth, but it sounded… dry, in a way.

"Come on, must you have a reason to talk?" Oh Matsuda, if you only knew. Raito didn't say anything though, just sighed and motioned for him to start. "Oh, yeah. The two girls who were revived! I made some research and found out that they hadn't done anything more than stealing some food! So the media lied!"

"That's common knowledge, Matsuda. Besides, Kira sees no difference between petty theft and murder nowadays." Matsuda looked a little put down but then put on a firm expression.

"Even so! We should file a report against the TV-stations and the news agencies behind it!"

"What would it lead to?" Raito had picked up the small note where he'd written the code for the mark on, gazing at it with a frown while talking. "All that would happen would be that Kira becomes angry, kills everyone behind it, and then it would go on like that."

"…I guess you're right." Matsuda sighed. "Is this case hopeless?"

"No." Raito shook his head. "Only near impossible. Kira kills with a NOTEBOOK. The only quick way would be confiscating every notebook in the world and test them to see if someone dies, but that is impossible. The other way is to somehow catch Kira in the act, or wait until it ebbs out."

"…Wait until Kira dies? That could take very long time."

"…Someday it will end, one way or another." Raito muttered, knowing to himself that so would not be the case, there would always be some way to pass on the job, but to make Matsuda a bit satisfied.

"…Someday…" The man sighed, the sound followed by footsteps. "What're you looking at?" And without further ado the paper was ripped from him. He opened his mouth to protest but then Matsuda hummed. "A code?"

"Something like that. But the symbols don't make sense." He felt angry at himself for admitting it, but knew that it wouldn't change anything. Like Matsuda would know more than-

"Hey, this reminds me of something!" He blinked, and looked up at the man, as Matsuda walked over to the whiteboard. "I mean, if we can't have to figure the symbols out, we have to act as if we play hangman."


"Like this!" Matsuda drew eleven small strokes next to each other. "Next, fill in the letters you know…" He wrote out the letters. "…and these two are the same, so let's put a circle around them…"

"And the rest?" Raito asked, having looked down at his papers in slight disinterest. This was what he'd been doing, so…

"Leave them blank." Blank? What the.

"Why so?" He started to look up.

"Symbols are there to confuse us. So if we don't know what they mean, we can just exclude them…" The words seemed to dissipate as Raito's eyes focused on the board, widening only the slightest of degrees. "…Now only to figure out-" The man cut himself short as Raito abruptly stood up. "Huh?"

"Matsuda…" Raito started, grabbing his briefcase and heading for the door. "You're a genius!"

Without explaining himself further, he exited the room and fell into a small sprint towards the elevator. Now, afterwards, he felt really stupid for not having been able to see such a simple solution.

The annoyance of having a complicated mind.

Pressing the button of the elevator, he fished up his cell phone and called a number. After a few signals had gone through, Ryuzaki answered. "Yes?"

"Is Jyiva there?"

"…Uh, yes, but what…"

"Tell him I figured it out. I want to speak with him. At my place, in fifteen minutes."

"Shall I follow along?"

"That won't be necessary." He left the elevator and headed for his car. "Just Jyiva. It's nothing important, anyway."

"You're an awful liar, Raito-kun. But just because you asked so nicely…" without any other word, the detective hung up.

By the time he had gotten into his car and driven out of the parking lot, Raito frowned, mind settling on something that annoyed him. He recited it in his head once, just to confirm it to himself.

Blank – a – blank – a – blank – (blank) – blank – a – (blank) – t – o

Y - a – g – a – m – (i) – R – a – (i) – t – o

If that was the contract of the curse… then something with him was holding the key to Ryuzaki's reviving powers…

…Why else would L have HIS name carved onto his body?


He didn't know if he'd expected the tenshi to await him when he returned home, but it was both startling and relieving. For one, he was annoyed that despite fifteen minutes in the car, he still hadn't figured out the connection of himself to L's contract. Something about it just didn't make any sense.

"L said you had figured it out." Jyiva said, simply, as he entered the living room and sat down on the couch to be opposite of the otherworldly being.

"At least what it says." He said, firmly. "…So I do have some questions."

"If you've really figured it out, I'm sure you do." Without saying anything more, it appeared that Jyiva was just going to wait and see what the brunet asked. Annoying tenshi…

"Well, first of all… why my name!?" He shook his head. "It doesn't make any sense in any way. Why did he choose such a thing for-" The tenshi raised one hand, and he silenced.

"First of all. L didn't choose anything. The contract is based off the person's heart, and the price of it is usually something that has a special value to the person."

"…" Now that made it even more confusing. How did Raito have any special value to Ryuzaki? "So… why my name?"

"L was surprised too, and when I told him the details of it, he almost laughed at me, asking me how it would ever be possible for him to break it." Jyiva smiled a little. "Shows how little humans sometimes know about themselves."

"…I'm still waiting for my answer." Raito mentioned, leaning forward slightly, seeing Ryuk in the corner of his eyes as the shinigami seemed to also be greatly interested in this piece of information.

"I am well aware of that fact." Jyiva smiled a cryptic little smile that was even more annoying than the wait. He needed that answer. Of course, it had struck him a couple of times, why the tenshi, who wanted him stopped, wanted to help him in any sort of way. Then again, he knew from experience that otherworldly beings were different from humans.

"…so?" He asked, slowly.

Jyiva slowly moved some silverfish hair from his eyes, fixing him with a stare. "You are sure you want to know? The information might just change some of your viewpoints."

"Am I sure?" Raito almost laughed. These last two months had been… irritating to say the least. Interesting, but irritating. Actually, it was funny. He no longer having the detective around, he was good to talk to and kept things interesting. But his power to revive people… was very inconvenient, for sooner or later someone would find out.

"…Are you?" Jyiva still smiled and now even Ryuk seemed to get annoyed.

"Come on, he has been waiting for an answer for a while now, so go ahead and give it to him." Says the shinigami who wouldn't tell him what the mark read from the beginning…

"Very well." Still holding Raito's gaze with a pointed sort of half-glare, the tenshi spoke up, with a voice calm enough to seem as if he was talking about the weather. "The contract is based of three general parts. Memories, feelings, and dreams. By collecting what is closest to the human tenshi's heart based on these three are called the 'subject'. It can be anything, a certain movie, it just has to fit into all the categories at the time of the contract's sealing."

"So, I'm the 'subject'?"

"You can say that." Jyiva nodded. "Next, based of the subject, the contract extracts 'bases', parts of the 'subject' based on the priority of 'importance to the human tenshi'. Sometimes the Human Tenshi is aware of the base, but sometimes the base comes from the subconscious part of him or her, and can therefore confuse them."

"So, bases… how many?"

"Depends on the person, but usually only around four or five."

"…Complicated procedure."

"That's mainly because the contract must have importance. At any rate, the bases are not split up more, but rather adjusted and collected to one thing."

"The contract."

"Correct. Sometimes, however, the contract bases on one focus point and leaves the other bases in the background."

"…So, how did L's look like?"

"If you'd been a tenshi, you could have read the designs to know." Jyiva smiled. "The Subject, as you've realized, is 'Yagami Raito'. That's the title of the contract, too. The bases were 'rivalry', 'affection' and 'betrayal'."

"…That sounds… about right." Raito snorted.

"So did L also say. The contract, however, surprised him. Because the priority level decides the main focus of the contract, and he thought your betrayal would lay him closest. However, the main focus was his subconscious affections for you."


"The contract is read," Jyiva cut him off, looking calm as ever, "L Lawliet is bound under contract to never, by any reasons or during any circumstances, act upon his affections for Yagami Raito in a way that goes beyond the border of the emotional. Upon entering this contract, L Lawliet agrees to the terms and will know the consequences of breaking the contract."

"…What's that supposed to mean?" He asked, slowly, almost hearing the puzzle pieces falling to place in his head in a way that was rather frightening.

"Generally speaking…" Jyiva said, slowly, still seeming unaffected and even slightly amused by Raito's sudden defensive manner. "The contract…" Jyiva locked eyes with him once more, revealing the secret which Raito had sought.

"...Will break the moment L Lawliet indulges in the act of sexual intercourse with Yagami Raito."

Well, how's that?

I think I'll insert a well-needed 'DUN-DUN-DUUUUUUN' here XD

Okay, we ALL got the secret of the mark/contract now… but what will RAITO do (hum, it says 'Yaoi' up at the top, so I guess we all know what it will END with, but ya know)

As for reviews, I got TONS of them (80 on so I CAN'T reply to them (or you'd have to wait at least another day)

However, some people were angry at me (angry? Maybe) for making 'Matsuda seem stupid' and 'Hanaya being a flat character' and 'L being weak'.

Okay, I get what you mean, but let's not forget ONE thing.

This story is from RAITO'S POINT OF VIEW. Has Raito EVER found Matsuda to be smart? Don't think so. So Raito only takes notice to the times when Matsuda is being stupid… again. Hanaya is seriously in love with Raito (much like Misa, but she's not a model nor a killer) but to him she's annoying. So she is in the story until he figures her out. I mean, the times in the manga where Raito and Misa are together, she acts and seems VERY stupid. But all of a sudden gasp when she's alone, she seems to even have a brain! It's depending on the point of view.

As for L, Raito notices 'new' things now he's a bit more relaxed. L is not L anymore, he can't tell the world about him without getting laughed at, seriously. So Raito doesn't see the analytical, 'fearsome' and calm L, he sees L for a human being since he's no longer 'any threat to him' (except for awakening dead people, that is.)

Hope that sorted it out.

And '…' (on I KNOW I made a mistake. It has been mentioned before, and I'm sorry. And even though I also am 350 sure L would know the difference, L is not writing this story, and I had mixed the psychological disorders up. Sorry, I apologize for not knowing all about them, I just tried.

That goes a bit for everyone who mentions plotholes, mistakes in my research (which is almost nonexistent) and stuff like that – this story started as a forty-five minute protest against L's death (AKA chapter 1). The rest is… well, I dare say – completely winged. It's for kicks, guys. I don't have a lot of thought behind stuff, so I create a lot of plotholes with my own plot twists. And as I said about my research nonexistent. I come up with stuff, if I'm completely at a loss, I ask someone. I'm not L, I'm not a novelist and I'm certainly not someone who knows everything.

I'm just a random person behind a computer screen, writing a story for my own and others reading pleasure. Constructive criticism, sure, but please, I can't know everything. If I had been J.K. Rowling, I'd allowed you to flame my plotholes how MUCH you'd wanted, but since I'm not earning any money on typing this story for others to read, I think I'm allowed to have some mistakes, plotholes and stuff in it.

My Point: criticize the flow of the story, the grammar mistakes, the, I don't know, random OOCness that in my mind is character development. But don't flame me when I happen to choose the wrong psychological disorder and then just leave. Mention it nicely together with other facts (perhaps parts you liked!?)

I'm sorry for sounding angry, but it's stuff like that which disrupts my writing – I'm (sadly) a very sensitive person.

Please forgive me.

ANYWAY! On to other stuff has gotten Coca Cola and chocolate to lighten my mood I hopefully (Definitely!) won't take this long with chapter 15, but I STILL beg you (even though I, myself, am terrible at it)

PLEASE leave a review! It makes me write faster! (note – review, not flame. Savvy?)

Until next time!