Only The Beginning

"Everything out of your pockets, Kaito," Shinichi said, showing no surprise as seven doves, fifteen roses, three bags of confetti, nine smokebombs, four packs of cards, and assortment of other things appeared from apparently nowhere and went into the tray, though the security guard sitting next to the x-ray machine looked like his eyes were about to pop out of his sockets. "Is all of this legal to have on an airplane?" He murmured more quietly.

"Act like it is and they'll be too shellshocked to ask," Kaito said, never breaking his cheery grin as he strolled through the doorway-shaped machine, which thankfully remained silent. Shinichi followed, making an apologetic nod to the guard, who indeed did look too shocked by the number of things Kaito could fit up his sleeves to want to search them. Kaito had already snatched up the tray as soon as it had come through the machine, and the contents had returned to his coat, as if they had never been there at all. Other travellers were staring. "C'mon, Shinichi! We'll miss the plane!"

"It's not boarding for another forty-five minutes, you fool," Shinichi said, grabbing his bag and strolling past the shops. "And we are not spending that time buying junk food."

"Awww!" Kaito moaned. "But Shiiiiniiiichiii…." He shut up abruptly when Shinichi pulled him over and kissed him.

"No," Shinichi said sternly as he pulled away from the now slightly dazed but happy-looking Kaito. "You're hyper enough without sugar, and I'm not subjecting the other passengers to twelve hours of your kind of chaos. Get a book to read, or a movie to watch on your laptop, or something."

"But what if I get hungry?" Kaito moaned, bouncing back to normal. The kisses were having shorter effect on him these days. Shinichi'd have to try something else before long... "I'll have to eat airline food!" Shinichi opened his mouth to retort, and then closed it again. He'd flown to America and back a few times, and he had to admit that there'd never been a thing to eat that he could keep down.

"We'll buy some sandwiches or bento or something," he eventually said. "Nothing with sugar."

"Shiiiniiichiii…" Kaito moaned again, bickering all the way to the gate for the flight to Egypt, the first stop on what looked like any other gap year, if maybe a little better-funded. It was a journey of self-discovery, like any year out. If it took them the entire year, or more, if they had to scour the globe to find any trace of what Shinichi was, be it in museums or mythology, they would find it.

Or at least, they'd find something to bring themselves back if their ex-girlfriends still wanted to kill them when they got back…


Vermouth strolled smoothly out of the uncharted private airplane onto the tarmac of the airstrip that officially did not exist and into the car with the false plates, where a man who also did not exist sat. All around them were those who had once existed and now, in a sense, did not.

"Japan has fallen," Jack said as the car pulled away. Nominally it was a question, but phrased as an answer; you didn't rank as high as they did or find much favour with her if you didn't have answers.

"A terrible loss, one that will take time and patience to recover," Vermouth stated back. The former, all of them had; the latter, most of them did, but she didn't. "The Pandora has been lost as well, along with Whiskey." Jack remained impassive, but his ghosts flinched, unable to restrain the emotions that they channelled from their master. Vermouth resisted the urge to smile; it was so easy to deal with ghostmasters, especially those still so infatuated with their power that they kept ghosts with them at all times.

"A terrible blow," Jack said smoothly. "She will be most displeased."

"I will tell her myself," Vermouth promised, as if she were determined to bear responsibility herself. Really, she just wanted to be alone with her- no other agent, ghostmaster or no, would be around, too terrified of her rage. Vermouth could be alone with her, could really talk to her, to try to bring her back…

"I suppose she is leader now, then," Jack said, after a long silence. Vermouth nodded distantly. "Though she is young, she has power and intelligence enough…"

"Intelligence, yes," Vermouth mused, staring out of the window, "and power like no other. But in so many ways, still just… can I hope to save her?" Her mouth set into a grim line of determination. "I have to try, while I can… because I know that someday, we'll see them again. And nobody, not even the gods, can predict how the game will change when the Spirit Detective and the Phantom Thief come into play…"



And that's the end of A Phantom Thief… and the beginning of the "Spirits" series. Yeah, the storyline began to mutate halfway through, and now a sequel's coming up… some day. I'd rather work on something else first, but rest assured there is much more to this story, and considerably more resolution than happened here…

Anyway, my first KaiShin story, and many thanks to those who read, reviewed and enjoyed it! Like I said, the sequel might not happen for a while, but a prologue to it'll appear soon on The Back Burner, along with fractions from other stories I've been starting on, which'll include two non-DC stories, a YuGiOh/Battle Royale crossover and a Pokémon fic. Check 'em out!

Glad you loved it, Renkin-chan! Even court isn't taken seriously around Kaito XDXD

Gotta hate the licensers, Marie Ravenclaw :( But DCTP's a great place to read and hang out at the forums, so they sure as hell better not take that DX

I just love making the boys blush, Teldra XD

It's done now, Ivan's Kitsune… but there'll be a sequel someday, no fear ;)

Kaito always wins, FallenAngelYamiHikari. It's a base law of the universe XD

This is the Epilogue, Kayla Edogawa… I wish I knew how much DC was left ;_; And it seems that, on average, 4/7 of the Japanese population are rabid Kid fans XDXD

I'm really glad the chapter worked, Desperatembrace… it worried me more than any other to write X)

Well, technically it's finished now, Daisuke Kazamatsuri, so you could try linking your friend to it XD At least, the story of the development of Kaito and Shinichi's relationship is finished… the sequel will deal with precisely what the hell Shinichi, Vermouth etc are XDXD I'm glad you loved it, and thank you so much for reviewing!

Here's the epilogue, SecondtoNon. Hope you enjoyed!

They're going to tear the world apart, Mesonoxian ;)

I think Sonoko may want to murder Shinichi to get her Kid-sama back, Dragon's Hitokiri… XDXD

Everybody's free and clear, OnlyIntuition! :D

Be as awesome as Eri and you'll have no problem in court, GoGothGirl ;) And of course everybody are fans of Kaito XDXD Well, there was your smooching, though the location was a little public for it to be too blatant… yet… ;)

Yukiko's awesome, eh, Cat? Well, not quite vacation time, more of an investigative gap year.

Good luck with moving in, Madame of all Manga! KaiShin makes everything better ;) Yes, the story's over, but there's still the sequel… ;) and cheese isn't evil. Cheese is awesome. ALL HAIL THE CHEESE!

It makes me prouder than anything if a non-fan can still enjoy the story, Katara Falcon, so thank you! :)

I'm glad nobody had problems with the skipping of the courtroom scene, Eyeinthesky XDXD (aside from the fact that I'd predecided that the jury would be mostly composed of fans, making the scene slightly unnecessary, I have no idea how Japanese court processes work XDXD)

I just don't think Hakuba likes people getting away, simply anonymous XD Are you kidding? I bet the media's going nuts about it. Famous and cute young male public figures snogging in public. The media won't drop it for ages XDXD

Don't be so lazy, Tohda XD Besides, I don't like anonymous reviews because then if someone trolls or flames me, I can't get them back or report them for it. Anyway, glad you enjoyed it, and no fear, there's more to come!

I do not own or claim to own Meitantei Conan/Case Closed. If I did, I would be luxuriating in my royalties, not writing fanfic in the back of old maths jotters instead of doing homework. -_-