Author's Note: here it is, backed by popular demand, the first chapter of my follow-up to Silver Tongued Devil! I hope you enjoy and I hope that you review. I really hope you review. But I hope that you enjoy more. I'm not that selfish. Oh, while I have the attention of all you Death Note fans, might I suggest you pay my friend NoblemanNick a visit? He has a story called "Deathly Dreaming Notes", which is a crossover between Death Note and the show Dexter. To anyone who doesn't know about Dexter: if you're a Light Yagami fan, you're probably a Dexter Morgan fan at heart. You can watch the show on Showtime, if you get that channel. Special thanks to ShadowDragoon32, now known as Aslan of Narnia, for choosing to be my beta.

Disclaimer: I do not own Death Note, Dexter, Nintendo or any Nintendo games. I do own a watch, but it doesn't have a secret compartment where I can hide pages of my Death Note. Oh, that's right, I don't own a Death Note either.

The time had finally arrived. After the years of careful planning Light Yagami was ready to destroy all his adversaries once and for all. Since the time of Kira's emergence the world had slowly but surely became a place that would whole-heartedly except and even welcome the self appointed god as its king. And now, the fruits of Light's labors were ripe for the picking.

Sure, it wouldn't happen exactly as he had planned it; Near had seen to that. The brat had thrown a wrench into his plans when he burned the Death Notes. But Light still had one ace in the hole: the page of the Death Note that he carried in his watch at all times. Now that Matsuda had allowed him the privacy he had taken under the pretense of using the bathroom he could pass judgment upon those who were foolish enough to oppose him.

Poor, naïve Matsuda, he would be the first to die. If anything went wrong, Matsuda would be the closest to him, and was, therefore, the greatest threat. Light chuckled to himself as he wrote the detective's name. The idea that Matsuda could be threatening was amusing. But Light had just learned to prepare for the worst-case scenario the hard way. It was a shame, really. If Matsuda hadn't thrown his life away to try and prevent Kira's new world, he wouldn't have had to die.

After he had finished writing down Matsuda's name he proceeded to write the rest of the names of the Japanese Task Force that L had gathered together years ago. He wrote as small as he could while remaining perfectly legible handwriting. He didn't want to take up too much space on his finite supply of paper, but he didn't want to risk misspelling a name. He decided that he would give some extra room for the English letters, even though his English had always been flawless. The SPK had proven to be a formidable opponent, and by "the SPK", he meant "Near". And by Near, he now knew, he meant Nate River.

Light saved that name for last. He wanted to be sure that the prodigy was well aware of Light's victory. When Near saw his allies succumb to Kira's judgment…

Light heard a pained cry from the other room and then a loud thud when Matsuda fell to the floor. He smiled, and took pleasure in the fact that he had finally won.

"So what do we do now, Near?" Giovanni asked.

Said detective put a finger in his white hair and began to curl the hair around the finger. "Proving that Light Yagami is Kira will now be next to impossible. I suggest that we keep a close eye on the news to make sure that no more criminals die. It is possible that he had a piece of the Death Note stashed away somewhere."

"But wouldn't that put us in danger?"

"There is a possibility that he saw our names on the fake notebook we made for Mikami, but the probability that he saw all of our names from the distance he stood is small. However, if he did still have a piece of the notebook-"

His sentence was finished for him when the members of the task force the new L had sent to "check for anything Near might be hiding" collapsed.

"- the task force members would be the first to die," Near said redundantly.

"Damn it to hell," Rester yelled, "Kira's still out there!"

"Yes, but this reintroduces the possibility of catching Kira red-handed. I will contact Yagami and-"

Commander Rester let out a grunt of pain and grabbed at the left side of his chest. He fell to his knees, and then fell to the floor, dead.

"I will inform him that the members of his task force are dead. His reaction will tell us-"

"He won, Near," Giovanni and Linder said simultaneously, interrupting their superior in a very unnerving way. They reached for their guns, pointed them at their heads, and pulled the trigger.

There was no longer any reason to continue talking out loud, but Near felt as though he needed to say something.

"Damn it." They were the first words that came to mind, for obvious reasons. "Damn you, Kira."

Near considered the situation he found himself in. The closest thing he could compare it to was when Mello had obtained a Death Note had had murdered a majority of the SPK, but this was much worse. The odds that Yagami had been able to see his name had just increased immensely. However, there was still a chance that Yagami had misspelled Near's name or it didn't see it in the first place. That, however, was unlikely at best – Near's name was the first on the list and was probably the simplest name to remember. To assume that he was still alive because Kira had made a typo was merely wishful thinking on his part.

Near noticed that his hands were shaking. He pulled out the blank puzzle he was so fond of and began putting it together. He made a mental list in his head. He should contact Yagami, that's probably what he was waiting for. He would then dispose of the corpses; after all, they were very unsanitary. Perhaps he should find a way to get rid of them first? No, the odds were that as soon as he was finished talking to Yagami, he would be a corpse himself. What he would do after he spoke with Yagami would depend largely on the response of the murderer. Near considered the scenarios where he would continue living. Most of them involved contacting Whammy's House. Perhaps there was another Letter stationed in Japan? Only Roger knew about such things. There was only one course of action to take if he was killed. There was only one piece left to the puzzle. Near kept it in his left hand and walked over to the computer.

He considered whether it would be better to simply avoid contacting Kira. Near was tempted to lie down in the bed he never used with his favorite toy robot and prepare for the inevitable. Kira would kill him either way; it was practically guaranteed.

Near resisted the temptation. He had never allowed anything to stop him before, and he would not die a coward. He walked over to the keyboard and put his right hand over the Forbidden Red Button. The Forbidden Red Button (which Near had named himself) was only to be used in the worst-case scenario. It would basically make the timer that had to be refreshed every 48 hours by the All Important Green Button skip to zero, which would then send all the heavily encoded data stored in Near's computer to Whammy's House and would delete all the data in Near's records as soon as that was completed. The Buttons were incredibly cliché, but they were named to make them more memorable and not, as the late members of the SPK had suspected, because Near had a sense of humor. The chosen successor of L took a deep breath to calm himself and then proceeded to contact Kira, who had taken the title he had been destined to inherit and would soon take his life.

"Hey Light, when are you going to write Near's name in the Death Note? You haven't forgotten, have you?" Ryuk said with a dry cackle.

"No, Ryuk, I haven't forgotten. I'm simply waiting for him to contact me." Light said as he took a sip from his coffee. "It shouldn't be long now."

"Is that so?" the Shinigami asked. "In that case, why don't we play some Mario Kart while we wait? It's been forever since we could talk like this."

That was one of the only benefits of keeping the Task Force alive. Light thought to himself. Ryuk is probably the only one who can hurt me now; I wouldn't want to get on his bad side. But then again, that's what apples are for, isn't that right? I don't have to lower myself to the point of being Ryuk's personal entertainer. Sure, the only reason Light had gotten the Death Note in the first place was because Ryuk was bored, but Fate had given him that opportunity so he could become a king, not a court jester.

Light was saved from setting up the Wii Matsuda insisted on bringing into the Task Force headquarters' when Near finally contacted him.

"Oh? Speak of the Devil." Ryuk cackled as he laid himself down on the couch to watch. This entertainment would be better than any video game.

Light activated his microphone. "Hello, Nate-kun," Kira said with an evil grin. "I was beginning to wonder when you would call."

"L," a scrambled voice replied, "all the members of your task force are dead."

"I'm glad you have decided to be honest with me for once, Nate-kun," Light responded. "I was wondering if you were going to try and fool me into thinking that you had managed to replace the Death Note I keep here at headquarters with another fake."

"So you confess that you are Kira?" the detective asked.

Light chuckled. "Really, Nate-kun, are you still so concerned with confessions and 'solid evidence'? We both already knew that I am Kira. Oh, and if you were planning on getting me to confess in front of Matsuda you should know that he's already dead."

"I didn't think that you would spare him."

"So, Nate River, what are you going to do now? You must know that I can kill you at any time."

"I have reached to that conclusion, but I have no intention of giving up. Now that I have your confession I will have no qualms that would prevent me from arresting you."

Light laughed, he just couldn't hold it back anymore. "Arrest me! Nate River, you are a stubborn one! I am L, I am Kira, and I am Justice! Do you have any last words Nate River? You still have 40 seconds!" Light watched the second hand on his precious watch with manic anticipation.

"I believe in the will of the world. I believe that there are others like me that will not stop opposing you until their dying breath. I believe that your arrogance will be the end of you, Light Yagami, and even if it is not, I believe that true Justice will be restored once you die like the mortal you are," Near proclaimed.

"That's a pity. I thought you were smarter than that, but I guess even the rational Near has his delusions. Well Near, it's been fun. Enjoy the last moments of your life."

Near slammed his hand into the Forbidden Red Button as soon as he was aware his heart had stopped beating. An alarm came from the computer as all its files were transferred and then deleted from the system.

When Near fell to the floor he landed on his back. He could see most of the computer screens, but he only had to see one to know what was on the rest. The gothic letter L adorned the screen, a trophy that Near's murderer had taken from his idol. It was on every single screen, commanding his attention. It was mocking him; Kira was using it to tell Near that he had failed where L failed.

Near's left hand opened and the puzzle piece with the same L printed on it fell to the floor. There was a reason he always saved that piece for last, even though it was a corner piece and the only marked piece of the puzzle. In his mind, the reason was fairly obvious: if he was too much of an idiot to solve the rest of the puzzle he wasn't worthy of using the letter. In his mind, it was sacrilege to associate the letter with anything incomplete.

If you can't finish the puzzle, then you're nothing but a loser. He had said that when he heard that L died. He didn't let it show, but he was furious that day. He was angry with Kira, but he was furious with L. His idol, the absolutely perfect detective, had lost his perfect winning streak. He had lost, and that had made him, quite simply, a loser. And now, N had lost as well. He had come close, but in the end, he too had lost to Kira.

But just because you never lost didn't make you worthy of the title of L. Just because Kira had won didn't mean he had the right to take that title as a spoil of war. Kira was just a murderer with a fancy gun, but L was a brilliant, uncompromising force of justice. Even though he had the power, L would never sentence a single person to death until he had conducted a through investigation and had personally seen the truth with his own eyes, and he wouldn't order anyone else to until he was sure that they too were certain of the criminal's guilt. Kira simply skimmed over a criminal's conviction and executed said criminal without a second thought. Kira wasn't passing justice; he was committing genocide.

He had hoped that he could right L's wrongs and redeem the fallen letter, but in the end, he had lost. But the game wasn't over yet.

As Nate River died on the cold, hard floor, he considered what he said to Kira.

There are others like me who will not stop opposing you until their dying breath.

Nate River really did believe that they would succeed where he failed. This was no longer a game for 1st place; this was a war for the future where lives would be put on the line.

With the last of his energy, Nate River smiled. Kira was smart, but he was only human, and no man was omniscient. A time would come where Light Yagami would leave a loophole in one of his perfect plans.

And when that time came, the Letters would find a way to exploit it.

Author's Note: so there you have it. I actually made a bunch of this up as I went along. I was originally going to just have everybody die and then show Light just waltzing on over to his throne of world domination. Then when I started writing from Near's point of view and thought "what are you going to do now, Mr. River?" I thought, "hey! Aren't there more letters in the alphabet then 'L', 'M', and 'N'?" Anyone else notice that the letters are in order? And if you throw Kira in it's "K, L, M, N". Consider that Ohba was also thinking about making L's alias "I" or "J" and it seems a little too coincidental…

Thanks again to my beta, Shadowdragoon32. She actually raised a legitimate question: would it be physically possible for Near to push the Forbidden Red Button after he had suffered a heart-attack? I really don't know, but I say that if Watari could, then so could Near.

Oh, right. This is the part where I tell you to please review and where you either A) ignore me and go along with your day, or B) listen to me and make my day.