My second attempt at DN fic. Also, it's unbeta'd and since English is not my mother tongue, there may be some mistakes so please, be understanding. If you spot any - do let me know! Any feedback and constructive critique is very much appreciated!

- Disclaimer: "Death Note" and all characters related to it belong to Ohba and Obata -


It's 2 a.m. in the morning.

Or maybe 3 a.m., you don't really know and you consider it too irrelevant to verify. You're sitting on the bed with a laptop on your lap, a compromising position allowing the boy chained to you to sleep while you're working; your back resting against the pillows that are supposed to cradle your head to sleep.

But you don't sleep.

For the thousandth time this night, you browse through the files in hope of finding something - a lead that may help to gain a foothold in the Kira case. You stare blankly at the screen trying your best to focus your attention on your work and not on the deep, even breathing coming right from beside you.

It constantly amazes you how peaceful and innocent he is when he's sleeping.

Not like Kira at all.

You take a peek at him, examining his features barely visible in the dim light and feel a sudden need to run your fingers through his soft, auburn hair. But your hand never leaves the keyboard. You would probably wake him up. And he should be resting now.

You let out a barely audible sigh while lazily returning your gaze to the screen. A few minutes pass and you notice that the letters start to merge together and you blink a few times in an attempt to clear your vision. It helps only for a moment and in an act of desperation you decide to close your eyes, just for a second, hoping it will be enough to let them recover.

It feels strange when you can't see anything only pitch-black darkness around you. As if you were blind. The very thought makes you feel somewhat anxious. You think it is the reason why you avoid closing your eyes. You fear that you may miss something important.

You fear that you may never open them back again.

The feeling of overwhelming drowsiness starts to take over your mind and you realize that you've indulged the moment of rest a bit too long. And yet, the satisfying numbness makes the primitive, atavistic call for sleep so hard to resist and suddenly the idea of actually laying down briefly crosses your mind.

Your eyes spring back open.

There's no time for that now. Not now. Not yet.

The laptop continues to hum silently as you tiredly continue to look through the data that both of you have managed to collect so far. You are not afraid to admit before yourself that you feel a tad confused by the present state of affairs, but you certainly have no intention of giving up. Not yet. Not until you find a way to…

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'Say, Raito-kun. Do you think it is possible that Kira is in every one of us?

'What do you mean, Ryuuzaki?'

'Allow me to spell it out for you, Raito-kun. Do you think that every man, given the opportunity to kill for his benefit, would seize it?'

'I don't know Ryuuzaki, I'm not--'

'You know perfectly well, Raito-kun. Please, do not be afraid to share it with me. I am not going to use it against you in the investigation. I just want to hear your opinion.

We know that the Kira powers can be transferred from one person to another. Do you think that anyone can become Kira?'

'…I think there is a possibility that each one of us is capable of becoming Kira. It is said that every man, when put in tight spot, is able to kill, for one reason or another. Maybe the Kira powers act as a catalyst to set off new trains of thought located deep in the subconscious. It may bring out the best or the worst in people. It depends on an individual. But one thing is certain – '

'So you are suggesting Raito-kun, that this condition of being Kira is not only temporary but may be reversed as well?'

'I haven't said anything like that but, theoretically, it may be, yes. When you get rid of the negative factor affecting human's behaviour… Ryuuzaki? Are you listening?'

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'Ryuuzaki?'

His silent mumble snaps you back to reality.

'What are you doing?' He's still half-asleep, you notice. His eyes are still closed.

'I am working, Raito-kun.' You answer evenly as if working was the most natural thing to do at 2 a.m. in the morning.

'Mmmm…' he lets out a soft groan indicating his disapproval of your occupation. 'It's enough for today. Go to sleep already.' As if to bribe you into obedience, he sluggishly places his hand on your hip. In a very intimate manner. It makes you wonder whether he is fully conscious of his actions.

'You know I cannot do that, Raito-kun.' You respond patiently trying to ignore the pleasurable feeling overcoming your senses and his hand laying dangerously close to your groin.

'And why is that, Ryuuzaki?' he inquiries daringly, moving his hand slowly upwards. He slips it under your shirt and you feel his slim fingers touch your naked skin. Your abdomen muscles contract involuntarily at this sudden contact. You look down at him and ponder for a moment whether you should say anything, but finally decide against it and the answer at the tip of your tongue eventually dies away letting the silence between you linger a little bit longer.

He doesn't seem fazed by your lack of reply. Like he wasn't expecting it anyway. He slides his hand down again instead, wraps his index finger around the belt loop of your jeans and tugs it gently in his direction.

'Come on. Turn that damn thing off and let's go to sleep.' You can detect a slight note of irritation in his voice.

Such a short temper, you muse. So very much like him.

'Raito-kun can go back to sleep if he wants, I will hold the fort for a little while longer.' You revert your gaze back to the screen and immediately start typing as if to prove that you really are working right now, paying no attention to his nonchalant advances.

Silence.

His hand slowly leaves your lap, accompanied by the heavy sigh followed by something that sounds like 'You're hopeless' but you're not really sure. He shifts sides vehemently and a moment later falls back asleep, ready to slumber the night away.

Everything becomes still again. You find yourself left with nothing but a twinge of regret that his hand is no longer where it used to be just a minute ago. The heat of his fingers still burns on your stomach. You find it disturbingly ironic. In the back of your mind you know that, right now, lying down next to him, wrapping your arm around his slim waist and savoring the bittersweet scent of his skin while listening to his breathing would be the closest to happiness you could ever get.

But you also know that tide and time waits for no man and you have to keep going if you want to keep your promise.

The condition is temporary and may be reversed… if you get rid of the negative factor affecting human behavior… you can save him… from himself…

The promise you made to yourself.

'You know I cannot do that, Raito-kun.' You murmur under your breath, bent on answering the boy's earlier question anyway. 'There is still too much to do…' you lower your voice even more, wondering if it possible to reach people in their sleep. 'Too many things to take care of…'

Before I can afford to finally fall asleep.

The sound of gentle snoring convinces you that he couldn't have heard you.