Disclaimer: If Koorii-chan and Dragon-sama owned Detective Conan and Magic Kaito...Well, just be glad we don't!
Pairing: Kaito/Shinichi, eventually and sorta right off, too.
Warnings: Male/Male relationship, Super Angst, AU, repeat-fic, round-robin writing, and no assurance that anything makes sense.
Author for Chapter: White Mage Koorii
So Dragon-sama proposed the idea of a "repeat" fic, wherein a character wakes up at the beginning of their series and has to do it over again. This was born. The title "Mayonaka" means Dead of Night/Midnight in Japanese, and we got that name because I was listening to the song Mitternacht by E Nomine (Mitternacht means Midnight in German). Said song was major inspiration behind this chapter.
Shinichi: 12 Chimes
As soon as he recognized the sensation, he knew that he had died again.
It was like falling backwards and going nowhere at all, or maybe just moving very slowly. Shinichi opened his eyes to infinite blackness. Perhaps the right term for it was that he was sinking slowly toward a bottom that wasn't there.
His heart wasn't beating, nor did he breathe. He simply existed in a twisted sort of way as he fell. He was neither living nor truly dead. This... this was limbo in its truest form, but they lied when they said it was everlasting. Soon enough it would peal away and....
Shinichi would wake again.
There came a tolling from the thick ebony depths, like a grandfather clock striking the time.
His heart beat a single thump in response to the chime.
His pulse returned, a slowly steadying thrum in his ears.
The pace of his heart was picking up, and he almost fathomed he could hear the ticking of the clock hands. They were going backwards.
He was falling faster now. Was it his imagination or reality that felt like wind in his hair, making his clothing billow around him?
Something nagged at his mind like the hopeless fluttering of a butterfly's wings. So soft it was hardly noticeable. He was forgetting something important.
There had been a moment...something different than the other times.
He could remember rough concrete under his cheek as he bled out, waiting for the blackness to open beneath him and the falling to begin.
It didn't matter. It never did. Shinichi let it go.
Almost there. He could feel it in him. His pulse was even, and his heart beat as strong as any living person though he did not breathe. It felt like he was suffocating, but he knew he wasn't.
His eyes slit against the wind (imaginary or not) as it bit at his cheeks and whipped the hair of his fringe into his eyes.
He tilted his head back and relaxed, waiting almost impatiently. Maybe this time he finally wouldn't wake up. Surely Time and Fate had to release him eventually? Surely the feeling of breathlessness constricting his chest so tightly was real , and he would never breathe again...
The last toll was so loud he felt it in his bones and with a jolt he gasped, sucking in a lungful of air. The blackness bled a vivid carmine as some unknown source below him flared up. Shinichi had moment to feel astonishment (that had never happened before), and then he was engulfed in a red, red world.
Shinichi sat up in bed. The covers pooled around his hips and twisted around his legs like snarled vines. His pajama shirt was badly askew and stuck to his skin from a thin sheen of sweat. His hand shot up, fingers grasping into his fringe so hard it hurt, while his entire face screwed up into an expression of mixed anguish and resignation. He ground his teeth together for a moment, fisting his sheets over one thigh and bunching the material into a knot.
Slowly, Shinichi forced a calming breath out through his nose. He made himself gather and suppress the feelings twisting like a bunch of snakes. It would do him no good now.
Twelve times... He'd been forced to go through this nightmare twelve times. A hysterical laugh hiccuped and caught in his throat. Shinichi bit it back, for he knew if he started he wouldn't be able to stop. If he broke down, he'd probably never be able to pick the pieces back up and put them together again. It was an inevitable fate, but he'd stave it off as long as possible. Though he couldn't help but wonder what would happen if he just let go, let his mind shatter, and spent the rest of his cursed life in a mental ward.
They'd probably find him even there, and it wouldn't make a difference.
As usual, logical thinking seemed to be doing the trick. It was a stable, a calming influence that allowed him to detach from his raging emotions. Another slow, deep breath sighed out, and Shinichi found himself able to focus better. He forced his fingers to uncurl from their death grip on his hair and the sheets and, after a moment, scooted back to rest against the headboard of his bed. Drawing his knees up he rested his crossed arms atop them and pressed his chin against them so only the top half of his face was visible over his arms. Letting his eyes fall half shut he gazed across the room as morning light dripped slowly in.
Something had been different this time. That red color at the end of his... rebirth had never shown itself before. What had happened during the last life that could have caused it?
The last time... He'd grown so tired of playing pretend that partway through Shinichi had just given up. Apparently his lack of presence at the thief's heists had driven the capricious phantom to seek him out. That night Edogawa Conan had revealed the tale of his entrapment in his shrunken body, and learned the plight of a boy who'd had his father stolen. Kid had wanted an alliance, and Shinichi had agreed for no real reason other than it seemed right to let the other hope.
As things had progressed, however, he had begun to hope again as well. Together with Kid, they had made some truly incredible progress. Still, the time had come, and Ai had succeeded in making the cure. Edogawa Conan had been shed like a useless husk, and Kudou Shinichi had risen from the ashes. Ai had chosen to remain a child.
Forced into hiding lest he be killed all the quicker, as well as to protect those around him, Shinichi had taken to flitting from one of Kid's safe houses and bolt holes to the next. The thief had been his only company, but at least he had been good company.
Less than a fortnight later Kid had dropped through a window in Shinichi's current hiding place (a small run down apartment with little more than two rooms) looking flushed, sweaty, and tired, but triumphant. The stone he held had glowed a vibrant carmine under the light of the moon.
After that, it was a blur of running and hiding. The sniper that had been at the heist had seen the glow when Kid first checked the stone. The two of them became the Black Organization's most wanted before they could blink. Their luck had run short on the roof of a twenty story skyscraper. He had died, shot execution style in the back of the head, while Kid had looked on in horror.
There he'd left his corpse cooling on the burning concrete to fall through the endless black.
The unusual glow at his rebirth was likely just some strange reference to Pandora, then. He had never been involved with the stone before, and in fact that life had been the only one he and the thief had worked so closely together. The other eleven lives had left Kaitou Kid as nothing more than an annoying rival and a wonderful challenge. Despite the fact that he'd been through his heists eleven times before, he'd still never managed to get his hands on the unpredictable thief.
Maybe this time he'd seek Kid out when the time came, and offer an alliance much earlier...if only for the company. It would be nice to have some form of company while he waited for the inevitable to happen again, and again...