Edited April 2012
Chapter One: Game Start
The computer screens illuminated a pale face eerily, their soft glow iridescently harsh. The gentle clicking of computer keys tinkered through the room while the fan of the computer modem whirled. L slowly ate another sugar cube resting atop the tower he just constructed. Thoughts and percentages flew through his mind at a mind numbing speed, something only a genius could be capable of. The dark haired detective was pondering the Kira investigation again; something which took large amounts of his time.
Beside him, Light Yagami, sole suspect of being the original Kira, yawned and deftly rubbed his eyes. It was three thirty in the morning, and being chained to an insomniac shot Light's sleeping schedule to hell. The rest of the investigation team had long since returned home, effortlessly leaving Light to deal with the eccentric man. The socially-retarded, intellectually brilliant 'friend' who annoyed him to hell while constantly reminding him of charges pending.
"If Raito-kun is tired then perhaps he should rest," L commented, turning his eyes away from the screen to peer at the youth. Light glanced over with a condescending glare.
"You know that I can't sleep at a desk, Ryuzaki. Be serious." Light retorted, scoffing as he crossed his arms despondently.
L inwardly smiled. This boy acted like a perturbed five-year-old. One would not guess that he could be a mass murderer. One would also not guess that such a proper, polite, and well-bred boy as Light Yagami actually held many flaws; though they weren't obvious traits which people would spot superficially. No, the only reason L knew of them at all was because of the large amount of unrestrained time he'd spent observing Light while being handcuffed to him. Light really was his equal, which was the only reason L didn't beat the snot out of him for being arrogant. Oh, wait- he had once or twice. Minor technicalities.
The monitor beeped, informing him there was a call waiting. Only select government officials around the world knew the number to Watari's cell phone, and it was only reachable in case of emergency. Leaning forward, L twisted the mouse to confirm the connection. The screen informed him Markel H. Tylern, the stern head of the UK Mercenary Unit was trying to reach him. Quirking an eyebrow as to the suddenness of said call, L put himself on the line.
"Hello Mr. Tylern," L said into the speakers.
His voice was masked by the program through which he coded the Deneuve voice. Mr. Tylern probably knew that "L" was engrossed with the Kira investigation from the TV scam he'd rigged to find Kira's initial location. So this was why he contacted "Deneuve", since that persona was renowned for effortlessly getting people out of sticky situations. Light glanced over at L with a minimal amount of interest. He was probably wondering who Tylern was, or plotting his death. But only L would think of such trivialities in that context.
"Hello, Deneuve. I have an urgent matter to discuss. Our government is putting our sole guidance on your answer." The thick voice answered, heavy with an English accent.
L knew that Light understood English fluently, but took no note of the boy simply to irritate him. L placed his thumb to his mouth. Still- such loaded words- something bad must have happened.
"Of course, Mr. Tylern. What is the crisis?"
"There has been an outbreak." The voice shook slightly. He was clearly frightened. L's eyes snapped back to the screen and Light tensed in his chair. L placed his free hand up towards Light, silently telling him not to say anything. Light's eyes were sharp when they met. Light understood this was bad.
"A chemical outbreak? What substance was released? In what area and at what scale?" L quieried quietly. There was silence on the other line.
"It's not a chemical outbreak, I'm afraid. My leading biochemist is calling this more of an infection. She says that it's been named the Rage Virus." The man paused, "The entire perimeter of Great Britain will soon be quarantined if this isn't contained. That is what I wished to speak to you about."
L's eyes widened. The entire area? That was innumerable people.
"What are the symptoms of this contamination?"
Another long pause, L was growing tired of it.
"Mr. Tylern, if you do not tell me more I cannot offer you advice." L's tone was firm and a little frustrated. He felt his chair sink and glanced up to see Light staring blankly at the computer screen. The look in his eyes mirrored what L often saw in himself.
"Deneuve, there have already been over seven thousand casualties."
Light shuttered silently while L bit his lip aggressively.
"That's improbable," L stated. "If such a massive amount were truly dead this would have been on the news already and I would be informed prior to this conversation. This is a major catastrophe we are speaking of, of course."
"We've determined that the outbreak started sometime on the fourth." Tylern responded, as if expecting this reaction. L blinked and removed his thumb from his mouth, sitting forward. The fourth was two days prior.
"As for what this infection entails, it's hard to believe." Tylern added.
"It is obvious to tell if a person is infected. Their pupils dilate to the size of their cornea and they begin to vomit blood. From then on they attack other people, biting off the flesh and using excessive violence to infect and kill them. We've determined that this virus is spread through saliva and blood, not through airborne pathogens. Once infected, people seem to lose all sense of themselves, and continue to rampage until they are killed. Some die immediately after infection, but those cases are rare."
Tylern coughed, "I will send you images of what the infected look like. This should be on the news within a matter of minutes, because, as you stated before, this is incredibly serious. It's been streaming on the news for the last couple of hours, but no one realized the scale of this swiftly enough. These infected move fast, and the situation escalated before it even came to our full attention. Our government wants to know what reaction you have. You've been able to help us many times before, and you will be paid amount for your assistance."
The sound of a new e-mail emitted from the computer. L deftly clicked the load button and saved the zip file to a new server separate from the Kira hard drive. If what Tylern was saying was true, L quickly understood the enormity of this situation. Seven thousand in two days…? It was unbelievable. But, so was a killer being able to murder with just a name and a face.
The files loaded and L dragged them into his PS program. Sixty two images flashed in manila folder icons. L clicked the first one. He couldn't accept what he was about to see.
L dealt with several creative ways to murder in his career and remembered each corpse and case, but this made his stomach clench and Light gasp audibly.
It was a woman, Caucasian, with black eyes staring at the camera. She had black blood running down her face and from what he could see, her hands was stained in blood. She looked like a schizophrenic. L clicked the next image. It was a body shot on concrete, male, Caucasian. His black eyes were gazing up, dead to the sky. He had bullet holes in his body and his face was the same as the first woman's. He had a chunk of skin missing from his larynx and a large wound on his left arm.
"So you are saying there are over seven thousand humans infected with this in the Great Britain area at this exact moment?" L asked tersely, knowing that Tylern was waiting patiently.
"I will contact you shortly." L stated, before dropping the connection.
He looked over to Light who was already back in front of his own computer. L knew just what he was doing, verifying the information. Light quickly hacked his way into a news frame server and accessed recent information while L went to the next image, and the one after that. There were all types of people, some children, but blood always covered their faces and they continually displayed a glazed look. Many appeared to have huge wounds that looked like a wild animal attacked them. But the teeth marks, once magnified, were distinctly human.
"Mysterious murders were reported since thirteen hundred hours two days ago," Light informed him. L clicked to the next picture.
"Victims died of either extreme blood loss or gunshot wounds from military personal. It's top clearance security information; I'm unable to access several reports." Light sounded upset, and L knew that it was pride. Light was a decent hacker and hated to feel unable to accomplish something. Light's hacking skills could probably go against Mail Jeevas's.
L relayed his analysis of the pictures to Light, not knowing why he was doing so. The boy processed the information quickly, and informed L he believed that quarantine was the only option. It would need to be carried out quickly and efficiently.
"I agree, Raito-kun, but that would also increase chances of infected to get at uninfected. More will die."
"More will die anyway, Ryuzaki."
L nodded to himself, reaching forward to grasp a sugar cube. Then he stood, the handcuffs attached between them jingling loudly. Rising to the floor gracefully, he walked over to Light's chair. His eyes were more detached than usual. Light knew this was because he was concentrating.
"Raito-kun, I must confer with Watari about this matter."
Light stopped typing and stood, ready to follow. The air was tense as L spun towards the door. Light kept up with him effortlessly. L flashed his security ID in front of the display.
"What do you think this infection is, Ryuzaki? The scale of it. If the UK ends up quarantining Great Britain then not only will those people be trapped there, but there will be large protests from civilians who have families within."
"There is no need to state such facts, Raito-kun. It's all very obvious. But, if such an infection can spread so efficiently, it must be transferred from a nonhuman species where it lay dormant. The key to finding out about infections is to do a deep blood analysis on multiple infected, during various periods of their contamination. Yet, part of this situation is where they lose their minds and start eating people." L stuck his thumb in his mouth balefully. "This is a problem, Raito-kun."
"Oh, yeah, didn't see that." Light was frustrated with the others apathetic attitude.
What Light didn't understand was that L was being cynical to hide any traces of fear. These were large amounts of people who were dying at that very moment. Tylern would need an answer as quickly as possible. Plus, he would need to get his successors out of Whammy somehow, to safety. There was a terrifying possibility that this could spread, and if it hit other large cities such as New York or London, L easily calculated the number of casualties. Reaching the door to Watari's office, L paused outside of it and glanced over to Light.
Light was running his hands through his perfect hair, L noticed. He appeared pale and a little frazzled, and L wanted to touch his forehead to be sure it wasn't a fever.
"This might divert our attention away from the Kira investigation. If so, I apologize, Raito-kun."
"Ryuzaki, if this infection reaches another large city then the number of dead will triple the number of people Kira has killed." Light stated, meeting his gaze. Light was the only person besides Watari who could look directly into his eyes. L briefly wondered why this was, but dismissed it.
"I understand, Raito-kun."
"Then don't apologize about stupid things that you have no control over." Light scoffed, his head tilting to the side. L blinked. Was Light comforting him?
Opening the door to Watari's office, L knew he was about to tell Quillish some information that the man didn't want to here. Whammy House was one of Quillish's biggest efforts and if anything happened to L's successors than there was no guarantee the L line could continue.
This had been a crucial factor when L started as a detective, all those years back.
This was going to be a long day.