November 5, 2011
November 5 wasn't as depressing for Matsuda as it once was.
When they had been working on the original Kira case, while Light was still alive, it had been a somber date for everyone - like a reminder that at any moment, they could die of heart attacks just as L and Watari had.
But now, they all felt differently about it. There wasn't any reason to be depressed anymore... Matsuda absentmindedly thought that maybe he could convince the team to get together and go out for a celebration, but then he realized it sort of defeated the purpose if L wasn't there.
...Where is Ryuzaki these days? he wondered as he stared out the window. None of the Japanese investigators had heard from him for several months, since they'd said goodbye to L, Mido, and the SPK. Mido occasionally sent them letters with English postage, and the SPK kept in touch every once in a while.
L, however, had become a voice on the computer once again.
That wasn't to say that they hadn't heard of him since then - on a regular basis, news reached them of extremely difficult cases being solved, all of them doubtlessly his work. But Matsuda couldn't help but wonder where he was and how he was doing.
Maybe he's in England with Mido? Or America with the SPK? But the last case we heard of involving him was in Russia, so he could be there... Or maybe, just maybe, he could be-
Matsuda almost fell out of his chair. "Jeez, Yamamoto, don't do that!"
"Sorry... Are you okay?" Yamamoto eyed him suspiciously. "You were staring out the window so hard I thought you were trying to break the glass."
"Really?" Matsuda glanced outside again. "I'm fine, I was just... thinking."
"Then you're obviously not busy. Wanna help me with some paperwork?"
Matsuda snorted. "Not for free I won't."
Yamamoto raised an eyebrow and smirked. "I could tell Aizawa who keeps calling him at two in the morning to tell him his refrigerator is running away..."
"Whoa whoa WHOA, don't you dare!" Matsuda practically jumped out of his seat. "Where's this paperwork?"
His friend snickered. ""I'll bring it here. Wait just a minute." He left the room, and Matsuda stared out the window while waiting for him. Where is L...?
If he'd looked just a second sooner, it was possible that he might have seen the odd black wings descending from the clouds across the city.
L was always a man of bitter irony.
He'd been taken from the scene of a crime at a young age to become a detective who was one of the biggest criminals on the planet. He'd been praised for his work by the best justice systems in the world while he followed very little of their rules or protocols. He'd been the first man in the history of the planet to be brought back to life, and his "arch nemesis" of sorts became the second.
Now L was standing on his own grave with a giant grin on his face.
He halfway wished that he could keep his mouth in a straight line and act like this was no big deal, but he couldn't help it. The whole concept of it was completely ridiculous! He was standing on his own damn grave looking at the unmarked tomb when he should have been two yards beneath his own feet!
I really ought to stop grinning before somebody sees me...
With a bit of a sigh, he repressed his superior mood and let his face fall into it's normal expression of indifference. Softly he stepped closer to the bronze cross that was there in place of a tombstone and gently ran his hand over the left arm. He traced some of the designs with a wandering finger. Yagami-san chose a nice marker, he thought.
As he was thinking to himself, he heard a soft thump and familiar chortling. "Hyuk hyuk hyuk. What're you doin' here?"
L glanced backwards to find Ryuk standing behind him. "I could ask you the same thing. I thought you were staying with Mido."
The shinigami shrugged. "Meh. Got bored. Didn't feel like killing anyone. So, I figured I'd see what you were doing."
"Me? I'm just... thinking." He looked away and placed his attention back on the marker.
"You humans think too much. And you get too obsessive over gravestones."
L paused and actually turned around at that. "What makes you say so?"
"Light came here sometimes. To laugh at you, I guess."
...Well, L certainly wouldn't have put it past him. "Did he?"
"Did he laugh?"
"Oh, yeah. You know what he was doing in the basement when he thought you and Eddie were going to die?"
It took L a moment to realize that Ryuk was referring to Mido. "Light laughed like that?"
"Yeah. It was kinda... funny and depressing at the same time."
L changed the subject. "Does the doctor appreciate that you refer to him as 'Eddie'?"
Ryuk grinned. "Nah. He throws hissy fits when I call him that, but since I have to generally stick around him he doesn't have a choice."
L realized he was smiling lightly at the thought of Mido throwing a "hissy fit" over anything. "You don't have to hang around him anymore," L announced.
"Not after today, anyway." L reached into his thin jacket and pulled out a familiar black notebook. "When I last saw him a few days ago, he gave up ownership of the notebook to me."
"...Well, I wouldn't have known that, I guess... Wait, then how could he still see me?"
"He never wrote in it," L explained, "so apparently his memories of the Death Note remain, and he can see you just fine because he touched it after it became mine."
Ryuk scratched his head. "Well, I guess it worked... So what're you doing here with it?"
"...Me?" L thought for a moment before reaching into his pocket. "Well, since we had you test it out for us and we learned that it was real..." He pulled out a lighter.
Ryuk looked slightly irritated. "So that's it? When you found out that the damn thing isn't a fake you decided to destroy it? You aren't gonna give it back to me or nothin'?"
L shook his head and got a flame. "No: it's better this way."
"But then I'll be bored again without someone using it to entertain me! What if I said I was gonna write your name down and stop you from-?" Ryuk stopped midsentence and almost physically slumped over. "Oh... That's why you had Mido give it to you, so I can't do a damn thing about you burning it to a crisp."
"Correct. Death Notes have no power over me anymore - I might as well use it to my advantage."
The corner of the notebook caught fire.
Ryuk sighed, rolled his eyes, and stretched out his wings. "You don' mind if I go now, do ya?"
"That's fine. Goodbye, Ryuk-san."
"Whatever." Without looking back, Ryuk took flight and headed into the cloudy sky.
For the last time that L would ever be aware of, the shinigami left earth for his own realm.
While standing there watching the Death Note burn, L's cellphone rang. He pulled it out and looked at the caller ID.
Near's Watari had stayed out of the Kira case at the younger's request, and after Near's death he had voluntarily taken up the position of Watari once again for the original L. Assuming the call was important, L picked up. "Yes, Roger?"
"I have another top-priority case for you," he said. "Several million dollars were stolen from a series of banks and casinos at 44° 22' 36" N, 103° 43' 45" W. The FBI has requested help, because they can't find either the culprits or the money."
"Isn't that sort of a given?" L pointed out. "If they can't find the people responsible, what is the likelihood they'll find the stolen goods?"
Roger cleared his throat. "Anyway," he emphasized, "you'll be staying in a nearby town to work on the investigation, but you need to catch a flight in a few hours. I have the information for you already in the hotel room."
"Good. I'll be there shortly." He hung up.
Without so much as a glance backward at his grave, L left to go and find a taxi.
Life went on.
After a few more minutes, the notebook was gone, leaving no more than a smoldering pile of ashes to be carried away by the evening breeze.