Chapter One: Not Alone

(A/N): This is a Death Note Alternate Universe. Characters do not belong to me. This started out as a little exercise to help me with writer's block, but the people on DeviantArt seemed to like it, so I caved in and said what the hell. So here it is. The chapters will be uploaded every Monday.

When I was about seven years old, I started to realize that I was much different than everyone else. I answered questions before people asked them, and I could almost see clear pictures of memories that weren't mine. I was afraid to ask my family because they never went through what I was going through. Never in the talk of birds and bees or the health books I read did it say anything about mind reading. But I learned to deal with it and keep it a secret.

Because of my amazing gift, I was able to get great grades and quickly become mister popular because I could figure out exactly what people wanted me to be. I had a group of "friends" but they were more like my fans. They weren't really people I could depend on. There was no one I could really get close to because there was really no one like me.

Or so I thought.

It all started in my senior year. I went to school as usual like I always did everyday, but little did I know that today would turn my world upside down.

"Light-kun!" came a high pitch squeal behind me.

I didn't need to look back to know it was my fellow classmate, Misa. She ran up to me and hooked her arm around mine.

"Hey, hey, Raito-kun," she said, my arm being pressed between her breasts, "Are you busy after school today? Would you like to come over to my house and let me cook dinner for you?"

"Sorry Misa," I said, flashing my perfect smile, "My mother wants me to chaperone my sister to her date, and I plan on studying when I get home."

Misa pouted. "Oh, Light-kun, you study too much." We walked down the sidewalk to the school. Then Misa tugged on my arm again. "Hey, Light-kun, look at that strange boy."

I looked to where she was nodding her head at and immediately saw the strange boy she was talking about. The boy was a few feet ahead of us, crouched down on the sidewalk balanced on his sneakers with his knees pulled to his chest and his hands resting on his knees. His messy black hair was covering his eyes. He looked homeless.

"Let's just leave him alone," I said, guiding Misa away.

The boy looked about my age, maybe a little older. My curiosity always got the better of me, and I tried to peek inside his head to find out if there was a reason he was there, but nothing came back to me. Perhaps the boy was asleep; I couldn't read thoughts when the person was unconscious.

Beep. Beep. Beep. The boy took out a cell phone and flipped it open. He shouldn't be homeless if he had a phone, unless he stole it. Then his eyes tilted upwards at us. His eyes looked pupil-less they were so black. Under his eyes were dark, too, and they had a wide, haunted look about them. And he was staring straight at me, looking me right in the eye. I felt a chill go down my spine. The boy's eyes seemed to be sinking into my head, reading my thoughts, but that couldn't be true, only I could do that.

But why couldn't I read this guy's thoughts then?

"Let's go," Misa said, jerking me out of the guy's gaze, but as we walked on the school grounds, I could still feel those haunted eyes on me.

We walked to our homeroom, and I sat down at his desk near the window. While the teacher took role, I gazed out to the world outside. I saw something that made me do a double take. That strange boy was standing near the school gates, looking right at me. As we locked eyes, I could feel my pulse quicken; this guy was creepy!

"Yagami Light?"

I looked to the teacher, realizing she had called out my name. "Here." I looked back out the window and the boy was gone. Very odd.

Class continued and my thoughts about the boy with haunted black eyes were gone from my head. During break period, I took some alone time on the school roof to alleviate myself from all the school drama. I sat against the wall covered by the shadows from the heat. Below me on the school grounds, I could hear the murmur of the children having their usual chit chats within their cliques. I closed my eyes and took a deep breath, relaxing myself.

Then I was bombarded with a thousand thoughts that weren't mine all at once. They were all jumbled together in different voices, coming so fast I couldn't make them out. It made my head pound between my temples. This happened sometimes. When I got too relaxed, I would lose control and be hit with a million thoughts. It would happen on occasion.

I have to get the hell away from these people. Whenever these attacks came on, I needed to get away to clear my head.

I got up, with my head in my hand, and walked down the stairs back inside the school. The unwanted thoughts faded away the farther I got, and the more control I had. I rubbed my temples, relieving the headache I had.

Across the street in a tall building, the same strange boy with haunted black eyes was staring out the window with a pair of binoculars. He sat in a chair with his knees pulled up to his chest, one hand holding the binoculars and the other holding a cell phone to his ear between his pointer finger and thumb.

"His name is Yagami Light," he said to the cell phone, "He goes to Okakura Private High School. I would say he's upperclassmen." He paused, watching the said boy on the roof. "Yes…Okay…I'm not sure, the alarm went off when he was with someone else…a girl…Amane Misa. She could be his girlfriend…I haven't been able to get close to them, yet. You need a school ID to enter…That's right…"

He put down the binoculars when Light left. "There's definitely some high spirit aura about him. I can feel it without my sensor…What's Mello doing?…No, I don't want you to take him off the case he's on right now. Get into the school computers and get me Yagami's schedule. Thanks."

He hung up and put the phone away, then took a bite of a cupcake that was on the table next to him. A small smirk spread over his lips. "Looks like I found another one."

He took another bite.

"I'm home," I called out when I walked through the front door and removed my shoes.

"Welcome home, Onii-san!" happily cried my sister, Sayu, from the kitchen. I walked inside and smelled the delicious scent of homemade dinner being made by my mother.

"Hello Light," Mother smiled at me as she stirred rice in the rice cooker, "How was school?"

"It was fine." I took a can of soda from the fridge. "I'm going up to my room to work on my homework. Come get me when dinner is ready."

I walked up the stairs and down the hall and stopped at my bedroom door. On the floor in front of my door was a broken piece of pencil lead I put in the door joint. It meant that someone had gone into my room. My family respected my privacy, but maybe Mother had put my clothes in there. I turned the knob and opened it.

I was shocked to see that the person who had entered my room was still there.

He was a boy with long blond hair to his shoulders wearing black vinyl pants and a black vest staring at my bookshelf. I certainly had no idea who this guy was. The boy looked like a punk. How could Mother allow someone like this inside? But my mother nor my sister informed me I had a guest which told him that this guy broke in. My eyes moved over to the signed baseball bat Father got me for my tenth birthday.

"I was waiting for you, Yagami Light," said the boy as he looked back. His eyes were covered by sunglasses, but even with those on I could see the boy was only a teenager.

I narrowed my eyes at him. "Who are you and what are you doing here?"

The boy smiled and removed his sunglasses. His eyes were a deep chocolate brown. Around his neck was a choker with a Celtic cross dangling from it. He had on leather gloves and wore combat boots. He reached inside his vest. I moved closer to the bat, but the boy did not pull out a weapon. He pulled out a badge.

"My name is Mello." He said, showing his black and white badge, "I'm with the Paranormal Investigation Squad."

I felt my eyebrows knit closer together. Who the hell did this guy think he was? "Paranormal Investigation Squad?" I repeated, "What is this, a prank? Are you trying to rob me? If you are, you chose the wrong house; my father is a detective."

Mello still kept his smile and shook his head. "I don't want anything from you. I just want to give you information. You see, we're a lot alike."

"I doubt that."

Mello sat down on the chair at my desk, crossing his legs and looking comfortable. "We are both very different from everybody else. If people knew what we could do, we'd probably be sent to a lab for study."

I crossed my arms. "What are you talking about?"

Mello rolled his eyes. "I'm talking about our gifts. And I don't mean Christmas presents." He looked over to the wall. 'I hope he doesn't realize I took his stash of money from under his mattress. The last thing I need is another arrest while I'm still on probation.'

As soon as I heard that I crossed to my bed and lifted up the part of the mattress I kept my allowance, and saw the stack of yen was still there. I looked back at Mello who had a smug look on his face.

"So you can read thoughts, hm?"

Shit. I silently cursed at myself for my mistake. How could I be so foolish? I swallowed. There was no denying it now. I was caught in the act. But I wasn't going to prove him right or wrong. "No one is going to believe something like that."

Mello put his gloved hands up in surrender. "Like I said earlier, I want nothing from you. I'm in the same boat you're in. I just want to give you a little bit of information."

This sparked my interest. Could that mean that this boy could also…? "What do you mean you're in the same boat I'm in?" I asked, sitting on the bed, now a little more interested in this conversation.

Mello leaned forward. "I'm saying," his voice was low with every word, "I can do things that others can't, also. Something that makes me very different from everyone else, just like you."

I crossed my arms for the second time. "You know what I can do. What can you do?"

Mello leaned back. "I'll show you."

He stood up. I stood up in defense. Mello didn't move, though, after he stood up. He stayed perfectly still. Then I saw his body was rippling like water and he was fading into see-through, then into nothing. I couldn't see him! He was gone!

I was completely baffled. I reached my hand out to where Mello once was but it was stopped. I felt the fabric of leather gloves against my wrist.

"I'm still here," I heard Mello's voice, "I'm just invisible." With another ripple, he reappeared.

I knew my face was priceless with my round eyes and dropped jaw, but I was astounded. It wasn't everyday you saw someone disappear and reappear like magic. "How did you do that?"

"I've always been able to do it. Just like how you've always been able to read someone's thoughts."

"But your clothes. They disappeared with you."

"I have pretty good control over my powers." He picked up an old spelling bee trophy from the desk. "If I'm touching something I can make it disappear," the trophy vanished, "at will. It used to be hard at controlling. I would find myself invisible when I didn't want to. It took me awhile to learn to control it. I thought I was alone, just like you, but I learned there are others."

"There are others?"

Mello shrugged. "Of course. But my stay here is coming to a close. If you have any questions or would like to know more about why you're like this, come to this address tomorrow." He pulled out a business card and handed it to me. "Also, please keep this between us. You go to that address, we'll tell you everything you need to know."

With a last smile, he walked past me, opened my bedroom door, then disappeared before he closed it. I looked down at the address neatly printed on the card in gothic font.

Paranormal Investigation Squad

I flipped the card over and saw nothing there. The address was printed underneath the title. I placed the card in my desk drawer right when there was a knock on my door.

"Onii-san," my sister said on the other side, "Dinner's ready."

"I'm coming."

"Goodnight, Taka-chan!" Misa waved goodbye to her friend and began walking down the sidewalk to her house.

Unknown to her, though, was that an invisible bug was flying over her, drawn to her aura. It flew above her, its thin wings buzzing silently as it waited, as it preyed. A prickling sensation tickles her neck and she turns around, afraid someone was following her, but she sees nothing. The bug takes advantage of her pause and dives down on her back, holding onto her shirt with its six insect feet and stabs its beak into her back.

She feels nothing and walks on.

The next day, L was called to the morgue by the pathologist he knew. When he entered, the doctor gave him a knowing look.

"Do you have something you want me to look at?" L said, stuffing his hands into his pockets.

The old doctor nodded. He had a bushy beard but no hair on his head. "We had this woman come in, but the cause of death is uncertain. After the autopsy, I found nothing. C.O.D is undetermined."

"You want me to see if there might be something else that might've killed her," L said for him.

The man nodded and led the younger boy towards the back where the body sat on the gurney, covered by a thin white sheet.

"Her name is Yorashime Takami," the doctor said, "She's twenty three years old. No husband or boyfriend. Lives alone. No signs of sexual trauma. Tox reports came up negative for all traces. All organs look healthy. No bruising that would signify strangulation. No signs of forced trauma."

L lifted the sheet up, examining her body. "You sure you couldn't find any sign of trauma?"

"Nothing," the doctor replied, "I did find something that I thought you would be interested in." He put his fingers in the girl's mouth and opened it. When he took his fingers out, his gloved phalanges were coated in what looked like a green paste. L picked up a wooden popsicle stick and got a sample of the goo.

"It definitely looks like Rogue spit," he said, putting the sample in a plastic cup with a lid, "But we won't know until we test it. I should have the results tomorrow. Where was she found at?"

"In her car in the driveway. Her neighbor came over when he saw her and when she didn't wake up he called the ambulance."

L nodded and put his hands back in his pockets. "I'll give you a call. Please do not release her to her family until I'm done. Thank you."

He bowed and left the morgue. That had been the third victim this month. There seemed to be a Rogue nest around here. He would have to investigate this more.

It was hard for me to sleep that night. How could I after today's strange events? I had spent the last eighteen years thinking I was alone in the world, that I was a rogue to the human race, but now there were more out there. More outcasts trying to make it through society. More like me. I had just learned hours before that I wasn't alone anymore. There was a society that I could fit in with, that I could be apart of.

I was afraid that if I fell asleep, I would wake up and find out that meeting Mello and everything I was told was all a lie my subconscious conjured up in a dream. I wasn't sure whether I wanted to find out in the morning that the Paranormal Investigation Squad wasn't real, only a figment of imagination and sci-fi. I laid in bed, flipping the card in my hand, back and front. It looked real enough. It felt real enough. But still, I didn't want to get my hopes up for something so trivial and something I knew very little about. Yet, the feeling of getting answers, the chance of meeting people like me, the possibility of being accepted by this strange society, not being the outcast but being comfortable with them. It was exhilarating. I couldn't help but be hopeful.

Eventually my tired body won against my mind and my eyes fluttered shut and I fell asleep.