Chapter 1: Beginnings
I was dreaming. I was usually pretty good at being able to distinguish dreams from reality, but still…. the images filling my subconscious mind looked far from fake.
Death was everywhere. Men, women and children littered the ground, their expressions caught between shock, pain and pure terror. Some seemed to have simply dropped dead, others clutched at their chests in a last attempt to cling to life. A few were mangled beyond recognition. I clasped my hand to my mouth and nose, both trying to hold back vomit and to drive the smell of decay and rotting flesh from my nose.
I struggled to comprehend the situation I was in, while willing myself to wake up. I was trapped in a nightmare of my own creation, alone and helpless. If I were able to conquer the fears that bound me into this monstrosity of a dream, I would have. Preferably awake and with a shrink, but I didn't have that luxury.
I glanced up when a small scratching sound reached my ears. It was familiar, comforting but ominous at the same time. I closed my eyes flipping through past memories, terrified as I was, at least I could still manage that. My photographic memory allowed me not only to remember things in perfect detail, but to project myself as a separate entity inside the memory as a separate watcher instead of a participant, releasing me from the limited view of my past self.
A memory washed over me, and I felt myself being pulled into my room, or at least an older version of my room. It was a cheery yellow, a reminder of my nursery days, with several toys strewn on the floor. The small bed decorated with a flowery pattern, as well as several stickers. A few photographs adorned the walls, and I leaned closer to examine them. Judging from the pictures, I was at least four. I turned around when the same sound I was hearing in the dream came from behind me, at the desk I had begged for to prove that I was a big girl too and could go to work too.
It was my four year old self meticulously attempting to teach herself how to write. My soft brown hair fell in my eyes as I struggled to master kanji. I chuckled under my breath, had I always been this determined? I bent closer to hear the source of the noise, watching my young unskilled hand drag a pen across a sheet of paper. That was it!
A pen and paper…
Much to my dismay I found myself wrenched back from the pleasant memory to the dire situation of before. I ground my teeth in annoyance. Apparently I wasn't escaping this nightmare so easily.
It was silent now. I strained my ears; hand clasped over my mouth to quiet my breathing while attempting to determine the direction the sound of the writing instrument had originated from. My effort was soon rewarded when the noise resumed coming from right. Ignoring my better judgment, I followed it.
Nothing to end a nightmare like skipping right to the part where you die.
I quickly stepped over bodies, trying to ignore their various wounds and states of death. The noise grew louder and I almost sighed in relief, the nightmare would have to come to a close soon.
As I grew closer, I saw a pedestal in the center of a pentagram, a single beam of light illuminating whatever rested on it. The pedestal itself was ancient, about half my height, and was covered in ivy and to my disgust, dried blood. It had an ancient tribal feel to it, like at any moment an ancient evil spirit would come to grace me with the same demise as the other poor souls in this nightmare.
When I was within touching distance of the pedestal the noise stopped, fading away to silence. My heart thudded loudly in my throat, as I swallowed and got even closer .Perched upon the pedestal was a small black notebook labeled, "Death Note."
I hesitantly picked it up, opened it, and began flipping through the pages. I bent closer to examine the words written on the pages. The handwriting occasionally changed, but the content didn't. It was filled with names. Names and details regarding these people's deaths.
As I reached the last page, something caught my eye, a small blank space at the very bottom. The moment I saw it I understood, but that didn't mean I could prevent it from happening.
"Room for one more," a harsh voice came from behind me.
Move! Move! Move! Move! Move! My body didn't comply. I was completely frozen. A hand reached over my shoulder and wrote the letters, R-E-I.Y-A-G-A-M-I.
"No," I finally managed to whisper. I spun around to face my murderer, my killer, the one who I knew was the cause of my swiftly approaching death, my body back under my control.
A man stood in the shadows, his profile barely visible. Only his red eyes and maniacal grin showed, reflecting brightly in the darkness.
"You lose, Rei." I gasped as I began to feel my heart constrict in my chest. I collapsed spots dancing in my eyes. As I felt myself slipping away, he murmured, "I am Kira."
BEEP BEEP BEEP.
I was wrenched awake by the sound of my alarm clock. My pulse thudded loudly in my ears as I brushed tears from my eyes.
That's one way to wake up. I shut off my alarm clock and pulled myself to the bathroom. After washing my face, brushing my teeth and taking care of other needs. I steeled myself to look in the mirror. It wasn't going to be pretty.
I frowned at the faint circles that seemed determined to slowly and permanently etch themselves into my skin. I was a bit pale from the nightmare, but nothing that walking to work wouldn't fix. Other than that the damage was minimal. I was still 5'5", my eyes were still brown, my hair, also brown, still reached down to my lower back. Basically if no one looked too closely I would pass off as a normal seventeen year old. I sighed softly. How I longed to be normal.
But I wasn't. Graced with superior intelligence, and apparently good looks if accepting credibility from my classmates, I had managed to graduate high school a year early and secure an internship with the police, based of a recommendation given by my father, Soichiro Yagami, before planning on heading off to college next year with my twin brother, Light. Having purposefully tied with Light in every previous class we shared, I decided to use my talents in deduction and investigation to make myself stand out more to colleges, ergo; I now work with the police.
After musing if I was a masochist or narcissist for wanting to stand out more with the internship, I rooted through my closet searching for "appropriate work attire" as my dad calls it. No weird colors, prints or jewelry. And the thing that hit me hardest, no sneakers. Especially not my custom made ones that went up to my knees. From approximately eight to six, they were off-limits.
I sighed and pulled out a black sweater and jeans. Even jeans was pushing it. Once I managed to tug those on, I pulled my hair into an updo, sighing again. Even on a good morning I sighed about twenty times. I grabbed a pair of flats to change into at work and through them into my bag, along with my wallet, badge, and chap stick. Did I mention I hate chapped lips? Well I do.
I trudged out of my room to the top of the stairs, while going through a mental checklist of everything I needed. I could hear the sound of my family happily eating breakfast, even on the second floor.
Right. Good attitude. There was no need to make my family needlessly worry. I grinned, trying to stay in character, as I playfully leapt down the stairs.
"Good morning." Dad, Mom, Light, and Sayu all smiled back at me, barely concealing the relief in their eyes. I quickly hid my irritation.
It's not like I'm gonna snap at any moment. Though I could understand their concern. Coming down the stairs hysterically unable to recognize members of my own family had put a certain tension in their mornings. Never mind the fact I had been thirteen at the time. Actually, after last nights little episode, maybe they should be worrying about me. Once he had established I was still sane, Light looked away.
"Won't you stay for breakfast at least once?" Mom pleaded. I chuckled.
"No way. If I don't leave now, I won't make it on time."
"You could always take the bus or ride with your father?"
"Nu-uh. I'm trying to be self-sufficient," I exclaimed a smile gracing my lips.
"Young lady are you sure you should wear those to work?" Dad asked his voice skeptical, clearly looking at my jeans. I groaned.
"Come on, Dad! You said jeans were fine!"
"I know I just didn't realize you had jeans that..." he trailed off as I glared.
"Lighten up Dad!" Sayu interjected. "They look awesome on you Rei." Dad sighed clearly outnumbered. I winked at her.
"Thanks Sayu. Well I better get going. I hesitated at the door realizing Light hadn't said a single word to me. "Oh and Light?" He glanced up, his expression guarded. "Take care." He nodded before lowering his face back down to his breakfast. I slipped on my sneakers before heading out the door.
Once I was several blocks away, I let the happy ditzy façade slip and proceeded to work normally.
A few more minutes in there and I might have said 'Believe It.' Back to the problem at hand.
I bit my lip worryingly. Light was avoiding me…that much was clear. Was he hiding something from me? Or was he distancing himself from me emotionally in case I didlose it again. Or was I just over thinking things? Of course I was. There were several reasons Light could be behaving differently. Being the analytical person I was, and hating myself for it, I made a mental list:
1.) He was worried about his future. Probability 17%. It was his final year at high school and I had already surpassed him. This could cause a bit of pressure on his part and some ill intent towards me. However, Light was also over confident and not the type to be pettily jealous.
2.) He was keeping personal secrets from me. Probability 59%. Light was a teenager and it made sense he wouldn't want me looking too closely at his personal life. Especially when it came to girls. Heck, I didn't want to look too closely at his life when girls were involved.
3.) We were simply growing apart. Probability 23%. Not exactly uncommon for two siblings who spent less time together, but I could hardly see Light letting one of his few providers of intelligent conversation slip away so easily. That combined with the fact he had always been protective of me made this also seem unlikely.
4.) He was up to something illegal. Probability 1%. I only included this possibility because of Light's intelligence and my involvement with the police. It was logical that he'd be reluctant to say anything that could later be used against him. But, Light also knows how I think so it doesn't make sense for him to be so obviously avoiding me.
I really was over thinking this. I chastised myself for being so focused on Light's behavior and continued my walk to the station.
I watched Rei leave, keeping my expression neutral, relaxing slightly when the door shut behind her. It was obvious Rei had noticed my strange behavior, she was almost too observant.
"Mom?" She looked up. "I think I better head out too." I stood up from my chair taking my plate to the sink.
"Have a good day Light-kun." I smiled before kissing her on the cheek. If Rei was too observant, Mom was almost too oblivious. Sometimes she made me question if Rei and I were actually related to her.
"Bye Dad. Bye Sayu." I slung my bag over my shoulder and walked out the door, waiting until I was out of hearing distance of the house before addressing the entity flying over me. Ryuk, the shinigami.
"That was interesting," I mused softly. The misshapen creature next to me laughed.
"You can say that again."
"I'm going to have to be cautious around Rei. She won't disregard things like Mom, Sayu, or even Dad do." Ryuk chuckled under his breath most likely excited with this new development.
"She did seem to be a bit confused about your little performance at breakfast this morning," he answered, his harsh low voice containing some sort of hidden emotion. Delight, maybe?
"Rei is almost unparalleled when it comes to reading body language and emotions. Couple that with the fact that she's my twin sister and has seen how I normally behave and interact with people, I'm practically an open book for her. I'm not exactly sure how to respond to her yet to keep her from suspecting my," I paused searching for the right word, "goals. But if I manage not to lie directly around her, I should be able to avoid suspicion."
I stopped talking as a jogger ran past us, resuming when he was out of hearing distance.
"Plus, Ryuk, she knows I'm keeping something from her. She also must know that I am aware of this. So basically my behavior says, 'Yes, I am hiding something from you, but I find it so trivial I don't care if you know I'm hiding it.'" I smiled triumphantly. "Also, knowing Rei, she probably has also created several possible scenarios for why I feel the need to keep something from her. I'm also quite positive she has already considered that I may be doing something illegal, but will have dismissed it as impossible, out of respect and trust in me." The walk continued in silence for a while, as Ryuk pondered this, my school coming into view.
"No matter how smart your sister is, Light. I think you have the upper hand," Ryuk said reluctantly, most likely disappointed Rei wasn't a more interesting opponent.
"That's the advantage of knowing what the other is thinking, Ryuk." He looked at me curiously. "We may be able to anticipate each other's movements, but in the end her faith will lead her to ignore any evidence pointing towards me. I will then be free to protect her and all the other pure people on this planet. I will be the 'God of a new world.'"
I then proceeded to enter the school and put on the mask that hid the real Light Yagami.
I watched as Light entered the building, interacting with all the other humans. I chuckled under my breath.
Humans are so… interesting.
So did you like? Yes, No, Maybe, Lobster?
Writing Light's scene was actually really hard. I had to make Light sound intelligent or else we lose a credible bad guy. Why are you so smart YAGAMI!
Did you catch the Naruto reference? That was just for giggles.
Oh and about the dream, I know the death note can't run out of pages. The space for one more name was just for dramatic appeal and to make the scene more intense.
Rei is not psychic or anything like that, I just figured that Light doesn't really bother too hard to talk quietly to Ryuk when he's in his room, so Rei could have heard everything while she was sleeping and her subconscious put it all together for her in a dream. Kinda far fetched but I wanted to start this dramatically.
Rei's little trip down memory lane was inspired by the pensieve (SP?) in Harry Potter. I found it quite interesting that when you went back to watch a memory you were there as a separate person and could watch things from different angles and such. Ahhh magic…you gotta love it.
I realize Light may be a little OOC where Rei is concerned, but I wanted one character that no matter what Light would not be willing to kill. He would kill the rest of his family if he had to, but he isn't willing to kill Rei.