This is actually already posted as prompt 10 of my drabble challenge, but I decided to repost it by itself because I actually really like this one (your own opinions may vary), and I don't feel like it's being read otherwise. Comments are welcome and appreciated. (Please?)

Warnings: Although it's more of an you-should-already-know-this, spoiler warnings are still in effect if you haven't read up to volume 7 of the manga or seen up to episode 25 of the anime.

Disclaimer: Death Note belongs to Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata, and probably Shounen Jump too.

Light wonders what it would have been like if he had never planned for the death note to make its way back to his hands; if he had continued happily working on the Kira case with L and had forgotten about the death note completely, had never regained his memories.

He wonders what it could have been like if L had survived.

Sometimes, as he sits in quiet reflection when Ryuk is not around, he feels that old sense of remorse creeping up on him and clutching at his throat so tightly that he's forced to swallow, choking it back into an uncaring ball in the pit of his stomach. But even then it doesn't relent. He feels it like a weight bearing down on his shoulders, pushing him down into the ground.

He should be happy, he knows; this is his victory, his glory. This is what he's fought so hard to achieve.

L's death was just the beginning, the pivotal moment; it needed to happen for him to get this far. But he hears a nagging voice in the back of his mind, whispering to him, blaming him for destroying the only one who's ever really mattered to him. For allowing the only person he could ever call a friend to die right before his eyes. That voice spits at him in a contemptuous hiss, dripping poison into his thoughts – L is dead, and it's all because of him.

Despite everything, Light can't help but miss him.