A/N: Hiya! Some of you might remember me by my other story 'Raven, tantei-kun?'... and some not. Don't worry about that story, I'll definitely get to it at a later date, but for now this story takes over upmost precedence. I just came up today with the idea and made the basic outline, so I'll hope I'll manage to overcome my panic attacks and complete one chapter each day (oh boy, oh boy, and I won't even have a computer for most of the day D:) So, this is my first Kaishin story, not to say my first romance story at all (tho I've found the affectionate scenes are lighter to write... for now) so please tell me what you think. This fanfic is for the December challenge on the Mirrorcomplex community, btw. Hope my writing doesn't suck.

Alright, on to the reading. *takes a good friend's example and goes to hide behind a bullet-proof desk*

Pairings: Kaishin
Disclaimer: NOT. MINE. Seriously. *shooes away the annoying lawyers*


Day One: The Fall


"After him! Don't let him get away!"

Kaito snickered to himself as he heard another crash going off behind him, his legs never faltering in the long run. Literally. After all, he'd been leading the whole taskforce on through the Kusumoto mansion for at least ten minutes straight.

'Eleventh time in a row, oh my~' Kaito sang to himself, then taunted aloud. "Getting rusty back there, my dear taskforce~?"

As he expected, loud bellows of officers met the barb, but none of them could truly compare to Nakamori-keibu's wild assembly of profanities. The one currently leading them could barely even hear himself above all the noise the taskforce was making. A pity really that the inspector couldn't make it tonight.

Not.

He'd heard Aoko going on and on so much about the Christmas her father promised he would spend with her back in Ekoda, he'd been really happy for her then. She'd been so pumped up about it, Kaito had no doubts she'd be ready to physically hinder her father from marching out the front door at the first mention of a KID heist.

And that was precisely why it was KID's duty to set up a heist not even a day after Christmas, with no more than a half a day warning to follow it up. It was, truth be told, a test dear Nakamori-keibu had to pass in KID's books: to stay and miss a chance at KID's capture for his daughter's sake, or leave in the wake of Christmas to catch a thief that not only planned on not being caught, but also giving a lesson or two to his pursuers. It goes without mention that the inspector was doing beyond well for now, considering his mysterious absence. He might actually get to pass the test.

'Aoko must have used her mop on him by now,' Kaito pondered.

He laughed merrily as he caught sight of his taskforce momentarily before turning another corner in the large mansion. They would have trouble identifying themselves as policemen with that atrocious hot pink color of their uniforms. Really, without Nakamori-keibu's barking to edge them on, they seemed more like lost puppies than growling bulldogs.

'On the subject of dogs, where's the bloodhound anyway?' Kaito mused as he evaded another group of officers that tried to cut off his path to the roof. In a puff of pink smoke they found themselves immobilized by, of all things, duct-tape, keeping them glued to the walls of the hallway with ribbons (red and green, it was Christmas season after all) decorating the top of their police hats.

And he'd been so sure Tantei-kun would make it to his heist tonight. Why was he so sure? Well, it wasn't like he'd gone out of his way to make sure the detective had nothing better to do on that specific day, and especially not going as far as leaving a heist note at the Kudo mansion, at the exact same spot he knew the seventeen-year-old went to read his books for most of the day. Of course not.

Well, it was true that KID had been somewhat obsessed with the Detective of The East for some time now, though why it was so not even he knew. Still, he wouldn't be that obvious about it, now would he? Right?

The locked door that led to the roof was quickly dealt with as Kaito stepped out in the cold night air. He walked slowly, almost sashaying over to the edge of the impressive looking mansion of the Kusumoto family.

All around him, tall trees spread wide across the horizon, the everlasting green a stark contrast to the pale yellow color of the building he was residing on. The snow, despite the cold December air, still hadn't once fallen this season, so all the estates in the nearby area could still be clearly seen despite being partially concealed by the lush forest. In the distance, a small village was visible by the twinkling lights of Christmas season, with periodical splotches of darkened white and yellow spread a fair distance away from it.

It was a known fact that rich families, which wanted their peace from all the media and hubbub of the city life, often decided to build their summer homes in this residential area. It was quite a peaceful place, with no hectic of the urban life and no expectations from the outside world, since the villagers nearby took warmly to anyone willing to dwell among them. Kaito should know, since he'd taken the privilege earlier that day to disguise himself as a newcomer and take a look around.

He'd been pleasantly surprised at the hearty welcome the villagers gave him and their willingness to divulge information about the nearby estates. Apparently the Kusumotos were on pretty good terms with the village and went there every other day, bringing forth the notion that they spent almost all of their time in their supposed summer home, as opposed to the rest of the families that rarely came to their retreats at this time of the year. For Kaito, it saved him a lot of the time searching on the jewel he had his sight set on, since there was no doubt in his mind the family would take it with them to such an inconspicuous place as this one.

The teen's eyes turned away from the pretty lights of the village as the racket the taskforce was making grew louder. He turned around just in time to observe them setting off his final booby trap, making them all spill onto the rooftop in one large pile of bodies. As a slight chuckle escaped him, the moonlight reflected on his monocle, the light it gave giving off an ethereal presence to the men assembled.

"My, my, you really do seem lost without your keibu cheering you on~" he saw more than one officer twitch at the mention of Nakamori-keibu's 'cheering', but decided to let the possible jab go for the moment. "Well, I must be going now, dear gentlemen. I apologize for the late hour at which you had to part from your families and am dearly sorry for the time I took away from your planned family gatherings, but~ as they say, the show must go on, and this show, unfortunately, is at its end." He gave the officers one more firm KID like grin before taking a step back, to the edge of the roof. "Ah, and please tell Nakamori-keibu on my behalf that he passed the test." A hand mockingly tipped the white hat down, before a barely noticeable jump took him over the edge of the roof, plummeting to the ground below. "Adieu!"

The hang-glider was activated before the men even had time to comprehend his vanishing act beyond the edge of the roof. By the time they finally untangled themselves from the pile and rushed to the edge of the roof, he'd long since left them in the dust, his hang-glider taking him higher and higher above the evergreen pine trees.

Finally allowing himself to relax slightly after the events of the night, Kaito cackled slightly as he maneuvered the glider with one hand, the other one diving into one of the numerous pockets of his suit and taking out the fruition of his latest heist. The green emerald felt heavy in his hand, the small red streaks at its sides glinting in the moonlight.

The Belated Christmas gem.

Truth be told, the gem itself wasn't named because of a loaded jeweler feeling the need to bestow it with a fancy name, but rather a legend originating from the Kusumoto family itself. It is said that a man found the gem after wandering the landside far and wide, looking for some food in a heavy snowstorm that befell his village. His family had been poor, and they'd been starving. They'd been praying to their god everyday, hoping for a miracle to happen, and truly, it did. On that night, one day after the Christmas day, as the man fell to his knees and pleaded god to help his family, a glint of light in the snow caught the man's attention. Upon approaching the mysterious glow, the man found a beautiful emerald stone with red streaks running across it laying there innocently, as if it had fallen from the sky. The man wasted no time in pocketing the precious gem and exchanging it for money and food with a trusted jeweler he knew. His family lived wealthy and happy after that, forever grateful for kami-sama's mercy, while the jeweler decided to keep the gem in his family collection from then on.

Well, to this day at least, since Kaito now held that same precious gem the jeweler family had been keeping strongly guarded away.

His lips still stretched into the confident smirk that many would affiliate only with the phantom thief of the moonlight, he only barely caught a small spark reflecting of the emerald in his hand before pain exploded everywhere.

The hang-glider above him gave out not long after, the ripples developing in it from precise gun-shots too great of a damage to faithfully hold its user up anymore. A few more sparks from a far-away mansion's roof caught the thief's attention before he tried to twist his body from its previous path as best as he could to avoid the in-coming projectiles. Small bursts of pain at various points of his body told him he was still shot, but at least avoided the worst of it. He'd live through this.

He wasn't so sure of that thought anymore as he dazedly noticed the trees below him nearing him at rapid speeds. He barely managed to twist his body in a mid-air crouch before the first branch roughly scraped him against the skin of his face.

-

He wasn't sure how long he'd been there, lying on the ground, waiting for the sniper to come and pick his prize up. He only knew that he couldn't move, could barely fathom a conscious thought for more than a few seconds at a time.

Everything was on fire. Or, was it him that was on fire?

What was he doing here anyway? Why did he hurt?

'Get a hold of yourself! You have to get away!'

Crunching footsteps in the distance alerted him of a presence other than him in the eerily quiet woods. His slowly returning conscious mind, still unwilling to wake up fully but feeling the urgency of the matter, gave him strength to gain control of his body. Unfortunately, he decided on moving the wrong arm and ended up yelping loudly at the pain that erupted at his shoulder area.

The footsteps in the distance halted suddenly, making Kaito hold his breath, before they broke in a full out run into his direction. They must've seen his uniform or glider in the dark night then.

When the footsteps got into a five feet radius from him and still didn't stop, Kaito knew he had to act. Now.

His uninjured arm slowly made its way to draw a smoke-bomb, sleeping-gas, something from his pockets, but a gentle hand grabbed his trembling one and put it back at his side, preventing him from taking any further action.

By now Kaito was, despite all the lessons his father had imparted on him about poker-faces and the importance of never letting his emotions show, ready to start hyperventilating by all accounts, but even that notion was stopped by an almost soothing hand coming to rest on his chest. He winced slightly from the pain it brought but still found himself oddly comforted by the contact.

Trying to focus his mind on at least opening his eyes to see his mysterious- Rescuer? Murderer? – he didn't know, and the splitting headache he spotted after that small attempt of defiance told him he somehow wouldn't be finding out their face anytime soon.

A sense of vertigo swept over him, and suddenly Kaito found himself slipping away into the darkness sooner than he thought. Sensing unconsciousness trying to take over him again, Kaito's breathing picked up again, the image of lying unprotected at this stranger's mercy not at all welcome to him.

'No, no, no, no, NO!' His mind screamed at him. He couldn't let himself fall asleep, couldn't surrender himself to this stranger's questionable care, couldn't let him see past his monocle, his face, his identity… So much was at risk…

Again, the soothing hand came back to rest on his chest, with another warm one coming to gently cup the side of his face, the one side that wasn't covered by the monocle, causing his breath to hitch slightly and start to even out. How did they do that?

"Rest. I won't peer at anything I'm not supposed to, so your secret is safe for now, KID." A quite voice said, the owner sending hot puffs of breath over Kaito's ear from the proximity of it. It sounded familiar to the thief, but he couldn't quite place it no matter how much he tried. The implications of those words did make great relief wash over him, though, making the darkness almost swallow him whole as he let the adrenaline slowly drain out of his system.

The last thing he felt before surrendering to unconsciousness were two warm arms carefully bringing him into position to be gently picked up.

"Well," the fading words never reached his ears. "First we need to get to safety, ne, thief-san?"

The old clock-tower in the village carried its chimes across the horizon, signifying the start of a new day. In the distance, a set of keen blue eyes lifted for a moment to listen to the echo, before swiftly turning back to the task at hand. Namely, carrying the dead weight on his back to a safe location.