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Chapter 9: This Moment is Eternity
L moaned softly. He wasn't sure how much longer he would last. Every part of his body hurt. He was shivering uncontrollably, possibly the beginning of hypothermia. Without his shirt there was nothing to protect his back from the cold stone of the wall. Although, he reflected ruefully, given that his jeans were letting the cold settle on his legs and rear, the shirt wouldn't be much help. He left his head flop back and rest against the wall. He needed to think, to clear his mind from the fog of emotions and feeling. He knew where he was hurt and to what extent, so his nerves had serve their purpose, he did not need their continued signals in his brain. He needed to assess the situation.
There was a slight pattern. They would have him hooked up to that god awful table for roughly thirty minutes and electrocute him. But at the end of thirty minutes, they would drag him back to his original cell. This was obviously psychological torture as well as physical. Lock him inside a dank, cold cell and force him to wait for thirty painstakingly slow minutes to pass, then drag him back to the room of his torment like an animal and strap him down to the table.
He was relatively confident that if he tried he could get away from his captors fairly easily, but escaping was a different matter. He had no knowledge of how to escape the maze of passageways he was in, he would either die wandering the endless catacombs and become one of the many corpses there (an idea he found very unappealing) or he'd be recaptured by the Order, who would probably decide he was to much of a liability and kill him. Either option led to his death, and that did not amuse him. And even if he made it outside, they were probably in a remote location, maybe in the woods or in the mountains. There was no way for him to contact Watari, and he highly doubted that he'd be fortunate enough to run into a police officer in the middle of the wilderness. Therefore, he would die in that situation as well. All in all, his options didn't seem very good for him. He'd just have to trust Watari and Light to find him… And to find him they'd need a trail… He leaned forward, twisting his leg towards him. L was very flexible, and as he lacked other option, this would just have to do. And he bit the soft flesh around his ankle. Hard. Soon he could taste the metallic tang of blood in his mouth. That would do… it would hopefully leave a trail as his internal clock told him his thirty minutes of rest were over.
The door swung open and two cloaked and masked figures stepped into his cell. He was right.
"Come on," one said grabbing him roughly and tugging him upright. One masked man walked seriously in front, gun in hand, eyes flicking back and forth, as if expecting Kira to jump out from behind ever arch way or column. L could feel the blood from his ankle continue to dribble out and slide down his foot, leaving a red trail.
L noted with mild interest that the walls were piles of bones. Were these the bones of monks? Or maybe long ago a nearby village had been wiped out by disease or war an they had rather then buring them put the bones here? Or maybe they had cleared out an old graveyard and merely lacked any other place to put the bones.
"Stop looking so stoic, you won't make it out of this situation alive," the captor closest to him said.
L looked at him, head cocked slightly to the side. Then he went back to staring at the ground in front of his bare feet.
"Be happy, you'll be able to join your little friend."
L's head snapped around, his dark eyes boring into the masked man. "What?" he hissed.
"When we grabbed you there was a second boy, remember? He's dead. Saw his skull split open myself."
Logically, L knew that there was a 38.5 percent chance this man was telling the truth. Logically, L knew that the man was probably lying to make him more cooperative. Logically he knew many things. But L didn't feel like thinking logically.
Raito is dead.
L stopped walking, his head bowed forward, his ebony bangs hiding his face.
Raito is dead.
And then he looked up, his gaze falling on his captor. While the mask hid the man's face from view, he reeked of fear. He shuddered, unconsciously stepping away from the bound prisoner he had been leading.
Raito is dead!
L snapped. He didn't care about hiding his emotions anymore, he didn't care that he had no idea where he was, that there was no way he could escape. He didn't care that he was facing two huge, muscular, armed men with his hands tied behind his back. Suddenly, the only thing he cared about was inflicting as much pain on those pathetic creatures as he possibly could, because they had murdered his only friend, they and their cohorts.
And L was justice. No… L was vengeance.
The masked man had just barely enough sense to pull out his gun from the folds of his cloak. He quickly took off the safety and aimed it at his prisoner.
L had leapt at the first man, tracking the bullet's trajectory with his eyes and dodging. He spun his body to accumulate the centrifugal force necessary and kicked the man hard in the face. The man crumpled, his nose and jaw broken, blood pouring down his face. L kicked the gun away, his eyes descending on the second man.
The second man shivered. Dark orbs that once were remained emotionless were now dilated and burned with rage. He backed away from the demon that stood before him, absolutely terrified. L had always kept himself tightly controlled. The only time he had shown the slightest hint of anger was on the occasion that Kira had killed the 12 FBI agents while distracting L with the prisoners' suicide letters. But that had been more irritation than anger. But now, L was angry.These sad little men had managed to awaken the giant from it slumber, and said giant was murderous.
L's obsidian eyes glinted slightly red, his teeth were bared, canines exposed. He looked feral, wild. He was no longer the emotionless L, the greatest detective in the world. He was Lawliet, whose friend and lover had been murdered. And he wanted revenge.
The second man turned and ran, but L would not let him escape. Not one person would leave this building without tasting a fraction of the pain and turmoil that L had boiling inside his heart. Not one.
L jumped gracefully, legs propelling him forward; he rebounded off a wall and slammed his body into the fleeing man's back, causing him to fall over, his face being pressed into the cold stone floor. During the fall L's swept his legs under the other's, which resulted in a sickening crack as they collided with the ground. Both of the man's legs were broken. L kicked the man's gun away as the other howled in agony. L towered above him, his customary slouch gone, his eyes still lit with a scarlet glow of bloodlust.
"Now now, L, lets not make this more difficult then it has to be."
L turned. He knew that cold voice. It was Peter's. Peter had been the one in charge of L's capture. He was therefore the one responsible for Light's death and the source of L's heartbreak.
He would pay.
L turned slowly, his black eyes fixing on dark slits in Peter's mask.
"Well, don't you look angry," Peter remarked. 'And I thought those eyes were creepy before…'
"That is because I am," L stated, his voice monotonous, but just barely under the surface boiled a primitive growl.
"And what, pray tell, could make the ever emotionless L angry. We tortured you for countless hours, and you reveal nothing, not the slightest shade of emotion ever reaching past that mask of yours. And yet now you suddenly snap. What could have brought this on?" Peter questioned, every word laced with poison. His snide tenor grated unpleasantly against Ryuzaki's ears.
"You took something very precious from me."
Peter cocked his head. They had taken something from him? No… that couldn't be right… Had they accidentally fried L's brain? Either way, it was obvious the torture didn't affect him. And Kira wouldn't know whether or not they had killed L…
The man was obviously more trouble than he was worth. He hadn't revealed a single name from the suspect list, but had seriously injured two men. Two men Peter could not afford to lose. The problem with keeping rigidly to the numbers set in the scriptures was that he only had eleven others to keep the operation going. Thirteen was set to its task and was not allowed to leave its chamber, deep in the heart of the Order. Only eleven pawns under him to keep the Order functioning. But that was fine. He could manage. After all, they were easily replaced, it just took a bit of time.
"And how do you expect to fight me, your hands are literally tied behind your back," Peter sneered, his malevolent gaze on the thin detective.
"All I need are my legs"
"L… I see no reason to further allow your existence. You are useless and a liability."
The gun was fired with a powerful bang.
Ryuzaki was about to leap out of the way when something caught around his ankle. He was slowed, the bullet burying itself in his right shoulder. "What the…?"
He looked down and saw the white mask of the second guard. The man had lunged forward and grabbed his ankle. Trying to wriggle free of the man's grasp, he kicked him in the face. There was a grunt of pain, but if anything, the grip tightened. "I should have broken your arms as well," L snarled. He was trapped. He couldn't fight without his legs.
And there was no way he could dodge a second bullet. He was out of energy. The adrenaline that had kept him fighting was receding.
Light, it looks like I'll be joining you soon.
He relaxed and closed his eyes.
"Good bye, L."
The shout made L's eyes flick open again. That voice, it couldn't be!
L gazed in shocked as Raito leapt into the room from a door he had not noticed early.
For L, time slowed. He watched as Light collided with L, using his inertia and body mass to force the detective out of the way of the bullet, which instead grazed Light's cheek. They collapsed in a heap together on the ground just as Mello entered the room, his gun drawn, closely followed by Matsuda and Matt, also armed.
"Don't move, or we'll fire," Matsuda said, his usually cheerful and childish face radiating anger.
'To many' Peter decided, "Alright I surren-…" he started, taking advantage of the cover of his billowing cloak, he pushed a small button in the wall, "-der."
The wall to his left suddenly opened revealing a small spiral staircase which Peter leapt into, closing the door before they had even realized what he had done.
"SHIT!!" Mello yelled as the cloaked man disappeared in the blink of an eye.
But all this was lost on the pair on the floor.
Light held the small detective to him in a hug so tight Ryuzaki nearly cried out in pain, his shoulder still oozing blood from where he had been shot. But he didn't cry out. Instead he rested his head on Light's shoulder, letting the younger man come close to fracturing his ribs just to be assured the detective alright, that he was real, that he was alive.
"I found you," Light said quietly.
"Raito-kun," L whispered, "You're alive…"
Light stayed silent for a few seconds, letting himself soak in the soothing baritone he had been desperate to hear for so long,
"Of course, you think I'd let myself die after the bet I won?" Raito said, a wicked smile spreading across his face. Things were right again. He had his L back.
"Ah…" Ryuzaki smiled as well, remembering their tennis match, "For some reason it feels like that was a few years ago rather than just a few hours."
"I've missed you so much," Raito said, loosening his grip slightly on Ryuzaki.
He lifted one of his hands, stroking the detective's porcelain cheek. L closed his eyes and purred at the contact, nuzzling Raito's hand like a small kitten. A small, gentle smile flitted onto the detective's normally emotionless face.
Ryuzaki then leaned forward, pressing his lips softly against the youth's. The kiss was tender; none of the usual fire or lust was present. There was no battle for dominance, there was no attempt to overpower the other. It was just a simple expression of the deep love and understanding that had bound the pair so inexorably to each other. It was reforging of the bond, a resealing of the pact.
Forgotten was the NPA. Forgotten was the Order. Forgotten were L's successors. Forgotten was Kira. Nothing mattered to the pair on the floor except the fact that they were together again after their long and unnatural separation, to hell with the rest of the world.
It was only for a moment, but at the same time eternity…
"Umm… okay… who wants to explain this to me?" Mello said looking at Matt and Matsuda.
The pair shrugged. Who the hell said they knew what was going on either?
Endnotes: Yay! Happy reunions!! A little bit of fluff towards the end such a violent and angst-filled chapter (Although Mello had to go and ruin the mood -sigh-). Happy reunions. But this is hardly the end. In fact, in only gets better from this point on! Now reward me for all this annoying effort and review.