Title: Detour
Detective Conan
Miwako Sato & Wataru Takagi
#4 – All Dressed Up
While on their way to the annual MPD New Year's Eve party, Sato makes some last-minute plans of her own.
Disclaimer: DC is not mine! I owe it all to the great Gosho Aoyama-sama. –bows-

As Sato's FD sped through the streets, it was with a mighty effort that Takagi kept himself from grinning like an idiot. Never in his wildest dreams would he have imagined that he would be Sato's date for the annual MPD New Year's ball – and under her own volition, at that. Words could not express how happy he was when Sato walked over to his desk that fateful Wednesday afternoon and asked him, albeit with the same nonchalance as someone hoping to borrow a spare pen, if he would like to go with her. And now here they were days later with her in a lovely red dress and him in a rented tux. They could have easily passed off as a married couple. To say that he was over the moon would be an understatement. It was a look to his right that pulled him right back to earth.

"Uh, the venue's that way," Takagi told her in what he hoped was a casual tone, his thumb pointing back.

Sato did not even take her eyes off the road. "I know."

Takagi laughed nervously. "Well, we're not going that way."

"I know," she told him once more in the same devil-may-care tone.

"But…" Takagi opened his mouth again, but he didn't know what to say. Unsure of what to do next, he just stared at the side mirror, the road leading to the hotel they were supposed to go to getting farther and farther away until it disappeared completely from sight after they rounded a corner. Still Sato kept on driving, with seemingly no intent to slow down or even acknowledge his presence anytime soon.

In an attempt to fight his building panic, Takagi turned to logic. Eventually, he found himself taking comfort in the idea that Sato might know of some short cut he was not aware of, though if that were the case, then why could she simply not tell him? When they passed by a road sign informing them that they were leaving the city proper, he knew he couldn't delude himself any longer. Recalling how useless his previous attempts had been, he decided to take a different approach. Slowly, carefully, he reached for her shoulder, gave it a slight squeeze, and asked if she was okay.

Takagi wanted to take back his words the moment he finished his sentence, as without warning, Sato had swerved sideward, her sights apparently set on a shoulder off the road. He held on for dear life as the terrain shifted from asphalt to gravel, while the driver behind them rolled up his windows and screamed insults about women and their driving before speeding off.

His heart must have been beating a mile a minute when the car finally pulled to a stop. He instinctively ran his hands throughout his body, looking for any sign of injury. As he did, Takagi could have sworn he could smell burning rubber. When he was certain that he was still in one piece, he turned again towards his partner, his mind occupied with what he could say that would not prompt another potentially life-threatening reaction from her. But she saved him the trouble, much to his relief.

"Every year it's the same thing, you know?" Sato began, still not looking at him. "We all go to a karaoke bar or some hotel and Shiratori-kun would bring some wine and Chiba-kun would hang around the buffet table while Megure-keibu plays poker with the guys and Yumi would be standing on top of what she thinks is a stage with a microphone on one hand and a bottle of beer on the other." She turned towards him so suddenly that Takagi almost jumped. "Aren't you tired of it all?"

It took a while for it to sink into Takagi that Sato was waiting for a reply. "We-well, if you put it that way, I suppose so." He looked around uncomfortably as he thought of something else to say. "So, uhm, what do you want to do?"

Sato shrugged. "I don't know, actually. I haven't really thought it through yet."

The purring of the engine and the occasional car passing by were the only sounds that could be heard for a while.

"Well, going to the New Year's party is definitely out of the question," Takagi finally broke the silence. The smile that crept on Sato's lips was more than a welcome sight after the cold treatment she had given him earlier.

Weighing her options once more, Sato's gaze dropped to the dashboard, then to the road, and back again in front of her. Her eyes lit up as an idea hit her. "What if I just keep driving? Keep driving until the gas runs out." She was beaming at this point. "Yeah, that's it. Let's have fate decide."

"But what if fate thinks that it'd be a good idea for us to spend New Year's Eve in a deserted mountain road or something?" Takagi posed, not too eager with her proposal. The last thing he wanted was to spend the first day of the year stuck in the middle of nowhere, even if it was with Sato. It was just too rash, too poorly thought out.

Sato only shrugged, much to his horror. "Well, then we'll find out what to do when we get there."

Not ready to give up quite yet, he posed argument after argument, each more ridiculous than the last, but they were dismissed just as easily. He soon had no choice but to go along with her plan and hope for the best.

Sato grabbed him by the shoulders and shook him excitedly the moment he gave his consent. "Come on, Takagi-kun, isn't this exciting?"

Takagi pulled off the best smile he could. "Sounds like a plan."

As the sedan pulled back into the road, Takagi sneaked a glance at the dashboard. The gas tank was still half-full. Lucky for him, Sato had turned on the radio, and a chorus of guitars and drums and Sato singing effectively drowned out his sighs. He rested his head against the window. It was going to be a long, long ride.


"Well, this is unexpected," Takagi began as he set their tray down their table and took a seat opposite Sato. She had buried her face in her hands the moment they reached their table. Fate's plan, it would seem, was to bring them all the way to a Mc Donald's branch in Kansai. "So, uh, you want some fries?"

"I swear the heavens hate me," Sato mumbled, finally looking up as she heeded Takagi's offer and ate some fries. "You were right, it was a stupid idea."

"Come on, it's not that bad." Takagi paused as he took a bite off his burger. "We're just celebrating the last day of the year in a fast food joint, with this lovely feast of burgers and fries to mark the occasion. We're a little too well-dressed, sure, which would probably explain why that guy over there keeps giving us weird looks-" He paused again as they both turned towards the man in question, who quickly hid himself from view with the newspaper he had been pretending to read since they got there. "-and we might be here for a while since cars can't go anywhere without gas and the nearest station's only a few miles away. What more can you ask for?"

Her laughter was music to his ears. He felt something warm in his hand, and when he looked at them he realized that during his attempt to cheer up Sato, he had somehow placed it on hers. He was about to pull it away when Sato grabbed both his hands and looked directly into his eyes.

"Well, you know what? Of all the people I can be stuck in this situation with, I'm glad it's you." Sato did not notice the beet-red hue Takagi's features had taken as she glanced at her watch. "It's midnight."

Takagi didn't know what got into him. Maybe it was the whole spontaneity of the evening, or perhaps the soda he had ordered had something else mixed in. Whatever it was, it gave him the courage to lean in and kiss her, and as he pulled back, greeted by the smile on Sato's face and the thumbs up sign of the guy with the newspaper, he felt happy. So what if they were spending New Year in a Mc Donald's store miles away from home? So what if his co-workers would kill him the moment he turns up for work? So what if his life insurance needed upgrading again? None of it mattered.

It was a happy new year, indeed.

Hey everyone! Yes, I'm still here. I am so sorry again for the late update. Uni work aside, it's just that I've been in a writing rut lately. For nearly eight months, to be specific. This fic was an effort to get out of that rut, which would explain why this story is poorly-written and a bit too fluffy even for my taste.

Now with that settled…ohmygod the latest case file! fjksdfkdsfk; I haven't been keeping up with the series for a while, but I'm more than glad that I decided to check on the manga now. My ship has definitely come a long way.

So yeah, please review, yadda, yadda. Thank you for reading and 'til next update!