Hello, all! Well, it's finaly here: the last chapter. (More like an epilogue, but you get the point.) There will be no sequal; sorry.
I hope you all like it. :)
Please read and review!
A small fact about Near and Mello:
Their goal in life was to become the greatest detectives the world had ever seen so that they could replace L when he died — after he chose which one of them would be his successor, of course.
Another little note concerning them:
The one thing they wanted most in life, more than Near wanted his toys, more than Mello wanted chocolate bars, was to meet the real L.
So Sakura, upon learning this as she studied Mello's face and listened to the conversation they were holding, hissed dangerously at Anthony until he called up L. He did so grudgingly, attracting the pair's attention.
"What the heck are you doing?" Mello demanded, glaring at her.
She blatantly ignored him, earning a gritted teeth scowl, and smiled as Anthony followed her orders of bringing up a picture of L and the task force on a monitor. On the other end, her friends watched as she planted her hands on a desk and leaned forward.
"Having fun?" Matsuda asked cheekily, grinning.
Sakura's lips twisted in amusement. "I'll bring you back a souvenir," she said dryly. He laughed in returned. "L, would you do me a favor, please?"
Said man's head tilted slightly. She couldn't see his face for the mask, but she knew he wore a curious expression.
A strangled gasp sounded from Mello as he stared at the screen wide-eyed. Near was very still, mask concealing his face.
"And what favor would that be?" the detective inquired evenly. "You know how much I enjoy doing favors for you."
Matsuda made a face in the background as if he was going to be sick. Sakura grinned like she'd just taught a cat how to fly.
"I'm impressed!" she congratulated. "You're finally getting the hang of all the sarcasm I've been throwing at you."
"Your tendencies are rather contagious."
Matsuda pretended to gag, earning a glare from her. "You two are so…so…gross. Can you just, I dunno, get on with it and jump each other already?"
Gasps came from the SPK agents at his insinuation. A choking noise signaled Mello's priceless reaction.
"Matsuda, I will come through this computer and beat your sorry face in." He swallowed. She grunted and shifted her weight. "So, yes, favor — There's a couple of boys here that have been dying to meet you."
Near and Mello froze.
o o o O O O o o o
Sakura leaned back in her computer chair, crossing her arms and smiling with self-satisfaction. She was quite the deal-maker if she did say so herself.
The deal she was currently so proud of herself for:
The SPK (and Mello) had to let her go — and quit boring her — in exchange for a meeting between L and the two boys. Without masks.
It seemed like a pretty fair trade to her.
The task force, Anthony, Halle, and some kid named Matt (apparently Mello's sidekick) all waited in another room; they weren't allowed to see L or Near's faces. (Mello showed his face to everyone, so he didn't really matter.) Sakura, however, was very pleased and flattered when L allowed her to witness the meeting.
"You're…," Mello breathed, eyes wide. "You're L?"
"I am," he agreed calmly, gaze unblinking as he watched them. "You are my replacements from Whammy's House. M and N, I suppose?"
They both nodded, seemingly unwilling to stop looking at him for fear that he would disappear.
"We were old that you had died," Near murmured, sounding deceptively disinterested.
L didn't react. "I did."
"This girl," he continued, sparing Sakura a glance, "claims to have revived you."
Still no reaction. "She did."
L was quickly becoming the master of non-reactions. "It is true." Near and Mello exchanged a look. "I suspect you both have questions for me."
Sakura smiled as both boys immediately rattled off inquiries, gazing at L approvingly. Despite his infamous name(s) and reputation(s), he was easily the most approachable person in this world. (Naruto had him beat by a mile, but that was another story.) With all the power at his command, he could very effortlessly be a rude son of a bitch. But, instead, he chose to be kind. Caring. Attentive. It was a welcome change from the usual bastard-ish (or lazy) geniuses that were common back in the other world.
Sakura paused, eyes flickering.
When had she stopped referring to the world she'd come from as "her world"? When had it become simply "the other world"?
Then, she realized:
She'd started considering this world her home after she met L.
Her smile was soft, eyes distant. The three geniuses noted that as they conversed, but only the oldest understood her expression.
"—in the future?" was the only part of Near's words she caught as she tuned into their discussion.
"Yes," L agreed evenly, his small creepy smile — the one Near could imitate perfectly — in place. "I shall look forward to working with the both of you."
o o o O O O o o o
Sakura tapped on a man's shoulder, startling him. He whipped around, eyes wide, trying to fling his gun in her face. She beamed.
And decked him.
L smiled wryly as Sakura dragged an unconscious, hog-tied man through the door. The former task force's main room was empty save for them. Soichiro, Aizawa, Matsuda, and Mogi had left two years previous after the capture of Kira and the Second Kira; all four had been reinstated into the police force, and Soichiro had regained his chief status.
"The terrorist?" he inquired, studying the man.
"Yep," Sakura agreed, crossing her arms over her chest. "Found him hidden on the college campus — just like you said."
L gave a slight nod. "Take him to Watari. He'll dispose of him at the police station."
With a smile, Sakura grabbed the criminal by the back of his shirt and carried him out. L spun around in his computer chair and alerted Watari of Sakura's arrival. Blinking to himself in satisfaction, he reached out for a small cake of sugary goodness. He paused, eyeing the bite mark that marred it. After a moment, he shrugged indifferently and popped it into his mouth.
Surely Sakura wouldn't get too mad at him for eating her cake.
Going out in public with L never failed to give Sakura a thrill. For three and a half years, now, she'd only ever left their building to beat up and capture a criminal. It had been a long time since they'd last sat in a little café and acted like normal people.
Sakura eyed the ring on her finger as she chewed on a stick of dango. L wore an identical one.
It was a running joke between them.
They'd come to an agreement nearly two years previous that, yes, they did "share a mutual interest in one another" and, yes, they did want to stay together, but, no, they couldn't get married. (L = famous face/name = bad idea.) So, after discovering how to work the little prize machines at the front of the café, Sakura popped in coins and won two plain (fake) gold rings.
Besides, the marriage itself wasn't important; it was the implication of it — of pledging oneself to another forever.
And that, Sakura thought as she smiled across the table as L, was all that mattered.