Important, please read: One reviewer, Concerned Reader, brought a few things to my attention, the first of which being the many ways this story violated "canon." Yes, I am aware that the summary states this is "canon-compliant" while all facts aren't exactly perfect; the reason for the "compliant" tacked on is because no, it's not exactly "canon." However, for the most part, the timeline and ages fit well with "canon" events. While I do admit that there are small parts that may seem AU-ish, most of it seems, to me, like it could happen.

compliant (kuhm-plahy-uhnt)
adj.
manufactured or produced in accordance with a specified body of rules (usually used in combination): Energy Star-compliant computers.

The computers are not exactly Energy Star, but work with it.

Concerned Reader also pointed out that none of the fourth-generation successors (Near, Matt, and Mello) have actually met L in person. This is true, according to the anime/manga. But, as I am fair with all universes of Death Note, I used Another Note when it came to meeting L. According to what M wrote in Another Note, they had, in fact, met L in person and talked face to face. Also, yes, I have disregarded Beyond's alias as being Backup, because seriously, who the fuck wants to be called Backup? Plus, as Beyond wanted nothing more than to surpass L, I don't think he'd appreciate being called L's backup, leading me to believe he probably requested that everyone call him Beyond or B.

Moving on, C.R. went on to say that Wammy's House was never called Wammy's House for Extraordinary Children. Okay. Cool. In my opinion, I can see that as the full name of the orphanage, though everyone just calls it Wammy's House. What I can respect, though, is C.R.'s pointing out of the fact that Shinigami Eyes allow you to see a person's natural lifespan without the interference of the notebook. I forgot that, and I thank you for that piece of information, but I'm not going to change the dates (due to the fact that we don't know when they would've died had they not been killed by the Death Note).

I do disagree with what they said later, though: "Also, L does not have any knowledge of such Eyes prior to the Kira investigation." If so, why the hell does he flip out when Misa (via the Kira tapes) mentions the Shinigami Eyes? I refuse to believe he freaks out simply because something irrational is about to prove itself real, and instead because he recalls that Beyond Birthday had these "Shinigami Eyes" and remembers that they allow the owner to see the real names of all humans. This leads him to fear for his life. Makes sense, no? While I'm still on the topic of the Eyes, C.R. also said that the lifespans are written in Shinigami numbers, and Beyond would have to translate them to human numbers to know someone's death date; personally, I think he was smart enough to figure out the translation and change the numbers to the numbers of humans.

Now I have a question for you all: C.R. said that I characterized L's quirks well, but that they were a bit overdone. Would you mind telling me in what ways they were overdone?


Gripping the phone between my thumb and forefinger, I quickly dialed the number I hadn't for a while, holding it delicately up to my ear and awaiting the other line to be picked up. A slightly muffled 'hello?' alerted me that the man I was calling was now on the phone, and I responded, "Roger, this is L. I'm calling to check up on my successors."

"It's good to speak to you once again, L," he answered, a hint of a cough in his voice. "Are you planning on coming out to visit?"

"Yes I am."

"Would you like me to alert the children?"

I shook my head before remembering that he couldn't see me. "No, Roger. I would rather it be a…surprise. It always makes me smile to see their faces light up after an impromptu visit. How are A and B doing?" I was most worried about A, considering some of the younger orphans had been saying he looked rather suicidal, though B was adamant that there was nothing wrong with his friend. To be truthful, I believe B would say anything to keep A safe and make sure he didn't need to be watched. He was a good friend and a smart child, despite his affinity for being a bit strange even by my standards.

"Above is looking much better than the last time you visited. He and Beyond have been spending much more time together, and I think that's really helping him get out of his manic state of depression. It would be a tragedy if he were to take his own life. Many of the other orphans would definitely miss him, however small and quiet his presence may be."

"And Beyond?" I asked, wondering about how the second of my successors was behaving. As of late, B had dropped to second place, and after realizing that it was A who had taken first, he no longer showed any interest in being first, probably for his friend. He was very bright for a nine-year-old, and could easily take back first, though he most likely wouldn't.

Roger sighed, taking a moment to respond. "Beyond is doing fine in classes and is still second on the rankings sheet, but it's his out-of-class behavior that strikes me as rather odd. Lately, he's been found outside killing squirrels, but the oddest thing yet is the fact that he's been calling the orphans by their birth names, names that he shouldn't know. I believe he's hacked the—"

"No, Roger," I interrupted, sticking a strawberry lollipop into my mouth and twirling it around, "he has not hacked the Wammy's system. There's only one child there with the technological ability to do so, but only Mello could persuade Matt to do anything, meaning there's no possibility that B has hacked it himself or gotten someone else to do it. I will have a talk with him when I get out there, which will be within the next few hours."

"…next few hours?" He sounded genuinely surprised.

"Yes, I am en route as we speak. I should arrive in about an hour and a half, so please get all the children into the common room by then. Thank you, and I will see you soon." I hung up the phone, looking over at Watari and sighing deeply. "I am worried about the children, Watari."

Keeping his eyes focused on the road, he replied, "Which ones, L?"

"For the most part," I started, sucking on my lollipop again, "all of them. However, A and B have me the most on edge. Above has been rather suicidal lately, and Beyond has been acting rather peculiarly. I fear something terrible might happen were either to completely succumb to their thoughts."

Watari laughed, a low, deep sound. "You worry too much. Remember, you yourself are no older than sixteen; just let go every once in a while and spend some time being a teenager. The rest of the world can wait a little longer." Leaning my elbow on the window pane, I stared wistfully at the English countryside passing us by on our way to Wammy's House for Extraordinary Children.

As much as I wanted to, I couldn't ignore the world in favor of being a normal teenager, the reasons for which were topped by the undeniable fact that I was no ordinary teenager. When other young boys were out playing tag and tackling each other to the ground, I was indoors, solving cases and catching criminals. It was just the way it was.

The price of being a genius.

In no time at all, we had arrived at the front gates of Wammy's, and were promptly let in. Refusing the help from the housekeepers, I opened the door to the car and stepped out, wincing at the bright sun that flooded into my eyes as I walked to the front entrance and pushed through the door, expertly making my way to the common room. I had grown up here, so I knew the house floor plan well enough to make it wherever I needed to go. I was assaulted by a sea of children as soon as I entered the common area, knocking me back onto my rear as I laughed and hugged each of them. The last one to 'attack' me was one of my younger successors, a six-year-old blond boy addressed as Mello.

"L! You're here!" he squealed, latching onto my waist and bouncing up and down. "Are you gonna play with me, Matt, and Near?"

I patted his head, smiling softly. "Yes, I will, but first I have some business to attend to."

"'Kay," he grinned, squeezing me tightly one last time before scurrying out of the room, presumably to find his two friends. "We'll be waiting!" Mello's departure left me alone with A and B, and I motioned for them to follow me to the empty office at the end of the hall, shutting the door behind us and sitting in the chair behind the desk, pulling my knees up to my chest as was customary for me.

"I'm going to start by saying that neither of you are in trouble," I began, looking back and forth from the frail mousy-haired boy to the raven-haired. "You're here because I wanted to talk to you about recent happening involving yourselves. A," I turned my attention to the first of my successors, "Roger has informed me that lately you have been improving, no longer appearing as suicidal as when I visited last. Is this true?"

He nodded, saying, "Y-Yes, L. I've b-been feeling a lot better in recent d-days. B-B-Beyond has helped tr-tremendously, and I th-thank hi-him." B grabbed his hand and laced their fingers together, instantly ridding the other of his stutter. "I don't know why I was so down before, but I feel a lot happier nowadays. I've finally seen how much life has to offer and how many things there are to live for. I don't think I'll be killing myself anytime soon."

"That's good to hear, A. And B, I've heard stories about your rather peculiar behavior and habit of addressing the other orphans by their given names. May I ask that you elaborate?"

"I don't hurt anybody," he insisted, holding A's hand tighter, "just the squirrels. I feed them to the predatory birds. You believe me, right, Lawli?" My breath hitched at the name, making me curl my toes in defense.

Calmly, I muttered, "Beyond, how do you know my name?"

"I can see it. I can see everybody's names. They're right on top of everybody's head. I can also tell you when you're going to die, Lawli."

The room grew silent as B and I locked eyes, neither of us blinking. "Pardon me?"

"I know when people are going to die, too. It's on top of their heads with their names. You're going to die on November 5, 2007, L Lawliet. Quillish Wammy will die on the same day, and Mihael Keehl and Mail Jeevas will die on January 26, 2013."

Stunned, I dismissed them, not moving from my seat even long after they'd left. B's ability was one I'd only ever heard of, and had never really perceived as true. In light of my newest discovery, though, the possibility seemed truer and truer than ever before. I stood, withdrawing another lollipop from my pocket and sticking it in my mouth as I left the room, headed for the play area outside to meet Mello, Matt, and Near.

Truly, I didn't want to believe it, but a nagging at the back of my skull told me I had to, regardless of the irrationality of the thought. It made no sense, it wasn't normal, and altogether it was, undoubtedly, irrational beyond belief. But I had to surrender to the nonsensicality of the belief.

I had to believe Beyond Birthday had the Eyes of the Shinigami, the Eyes of the Gods of Death.

I had to believe he was telling the truth, as the Eyes don't lie.

I had to believe he would one day use them for himself.

And I had to believe no good could come of it.


Author's Note: My goodness, I phail'd so epically I forgot to finish this by Sunday.

So, happy late birthday, L! For the rest of you, how was your Halloween? What did you dress up as? I went out as Misa-Misa, and let me tell you, short skirt was very, very short. :D