A/N: A quick drabble for you. Enjoy. Oh, and I'm using the manga ages.
Kudou Shinichi and Hattori Heiji discussed just about everything with one another, from cases to sports, from family to their respective childhood friends, and even to the everyday ins and outs of their lives. Their discourse covered the inane as easily as it covered their innermost feelings and demons.
Which was why Hattori's question should have come as less of a surprise when he voiced it. But then, this was one topic they had never broached before, and it was one that Shinichi himself studiously avoided thinking about.
"How do you deal with it?"
A casual observer would have noticed one six-year old Edogawa Conan go completely still, cell phone held to his ear, his expression covered by a combination of his bangs and the light reflecting off his too large glasses.
"What do you mean, Hattori?" Conan's voice came out lower than a child's voice should have been capable of.
A pause told the Detective of the East that his western counterpart was choosing his words carefully.
"How do you keep your head together? With everything . . ." Hattori cleared his voice. "If it were me . . ." he trailed off, obviously uncomfortable.
"If it were you Kazuha would already know everything," Shinichi quipped, his tone teasing.
"Hey!" Hattori objected.
With that the two fell into the sort of light-hearted taunting that so often marked their odd little friendship.
About twenty minutes later the two detectives had gone through several topics of conversation, and were currently laughing at the latest exploits of Sleeping Kogoro. As the laughter died off a comfortable silence settled.
"I try not to think about it too much," Shinichi admitted into the silence, seriousness making his voice seem older. Hattori made no reply, merely waiting for Kudou to continue.
"Mostly I just keep moving forward as best I can. I can't stop. If I stop I . . . I think I'd fall apart. So I try not to think about how it affects me, and just keep pushing towards the goals I've set myself. The big ones, like taking them down, or telling Ran how I feel, or even just the little ones, like getting through the school day. All of them are goals to strive towards."
"And the times that you do think about it?" Hattori asked.
Conan closed his eyes for a moment. "Then I call you. With you I'm always Kudou Shinichi, regardless of what I look like."
Opening his eyes Shinichi grinned, "Though if you don't stop calling me Kudou in front of Ran I'll have to kill you. And no one would ever find the body."
They shared a moment of laughter before moving onto other topics.
Neither spoke of it again. But then they didn't need to.
Their friendship was just like that.