All characters © Amano Akira

Summary: What you didn't (and may not want to) know.

Dr. Shamal, and 20 Things Better Left Unmentioned

1. Shamal preferred women, since they were the less stubborn of the two genders. They didn't go out looking for fights, they didn't undermine their conditions with tasteless bravado, and they allowed themselves to be cured. But women were a rarity in the mafia, probably, Shamal suspected, because they were smart enough to not get themselves involved with such things in the first place.

2. Dr. Shamal, the Vongola's medical expert, knew at least two ways to destroy everyone in the Vongola from the inside out. But he was a loyal doctor, devoted to the family despite the many calls to serve under other names.

3. He had never been a healthy man. Some people were gifted with strong immune systems, fast-working antibodies, and low susceptibility to infection. But for him, it was never one sneeze, usually five or six. Colds lasted for three weeks instead of one. As a child he'd had it all: croup, pneumonia, tonsillitis, ear infections, you name it.

4. However, there was some truth to the wives tale that what is lost shall be gained in another field. Although he had a body significantly thinner than his doctor's whites suggested, Shamal's IQ had been tested as the highest in Italy by age sixteen. What the recorders had failed to mention in their reports was that Shamal had taken three different IQ tests at the same time, and had scored almost perfectly on them all.

5. Shamal actually hated fighting. He opted to preserve lives in lieu of throwing them away, and wondered why everyone in the mafia nowadays valued their own so little.

6. Originally working as the Hayato family's private doctor, Shamal had never intended to become part of the mafia. Next time he accepted a job, he would double-check that the people he worked for were not related to the underworld in any way, shape, or form.

7. Once, when teaching Gokudera how to play the piano, Shamal had showed him an eighty-eight note chord.

8. It was common mafia knowledge that Shamal had been recruited for the Varia, and that he had refused. It was conveniently omitted, however, that the current Varia leader at the time had intended to make the Trident Shamal join by force. He had not succeeded.

9. Shamal is neither Italian nor Japanese. As many would guess from his name he is an Arab Muslim, named after the hot, summer winds that blow over Mesopotamia and stir up the dust.

10. As a child the doctors had diagnosed Shamal with severe ADHD, among other things, but in reality Shamal had something that was quite the opposite. His concentration was in fact so great that he could focus on several things at once. However, the effort it took to take in everything around him simultaneously made him appear aloof and distracted to others.

11. Shamal once found a cure for the common cold, but in one of his rarer moments of idiocy lost the formula in Italy during the chaos of the Cradle Affair.

12. The reason Shamal got so much respect was because he was the best indirect fighter the mafia had seen in years. He could incapacitate without even having to lift a pinky. Biological warfare was something everyone feared because they didn't understand it. With family feuds as common as they were, a necrology in the wrong hands was as deadly as the thing that had caused it.

13. Having a body with 666 incurable diseases made one value life even more, and it bothered Shamal more than he let on that his best pupil was throwing his own away with every puff. Gokudera complained of his constant nagging (smoking kills, you'll die of cancer, it was the same story every day but with different words), but Shamal couldn't seem to let it go.

14. The reason that no women ever pressed charges against Shamal's playful...frivolities was because they never remembered his face afterward. Like amnesia, it just seemed to slip their minds.

15. Granted, it was actually Shamal who suggested the name 'Reborn' for the Arcobaleno who came to him asking that his past be erased. And, later on, when Reborn had informed Sawada Tsunayoshi that Shamal had helped deliver his birth, it was actually a half-truth.

16. He never really intends to court Bianchi, since he practically raised her, but a lot of that poison cooking proves incredibly useful for some of his trident capsules.

17. As a young man his drinking buddy had been a fellow graduate named Sawada Iemitsu. Iemitsu would spout on and on, burbling happily about his fianceé and the kids they would have together in the future. And, in later years, Shamal saw how it broke the man's heart to keep leaving his new family for the Vongola one in Italy. See, Sawada Iemitsu was not only Shamal's companion in drinking, but also his companion in friendship.

18. Most people in the mafia, despite their opinions, are expendable. If they fail or die on a job there are other fresh young faces to fill the void. Shamal isn't expendable, and he knows it. There is not much joy in being an underworld doctor, giving the profession is twice as dangerous as it is difficult. However, one of the well-deserved perks is being able to to act like an asshole and knowing that no one can do a thing about it.

19. Shamal could have healed the Hayato's mistress, but she had forbade him herself from doing so. As a result he watched Gokudera grow up in anger, disillusioned by the notion that his father had driven her out, and his heart cried out just to sit Gokudera down and tell him the truth.

20. These days, if anyone on the streets asks Shamal what kind of doctor he is, he always replies that he is a gynecologist.