So...hey guys,

Guess who's finally back?! I realize it has been months and months and months, but this time I promise I'm back for good. I sincerely hope there are still people who follow me and this story, because I want to finish it. I'm sorry for being gone for so long, but I hope this more or less makes up for some of it! More later but for now, I'm just happy that I can post more again.

Light, put simply, was happy. He proved his point and made L sexually frustrated which made Light want to giggle. Actually giggle. Currently he was shuffling through clothes racks, not really looking at the clothing on the hangers. Women and men tittered around him but he ignored it, shaking his hips in time to 'Sexy Back' as he hummed it out loud. L had yet to come out of the changing room, and Light was growing impatient and extremely hungry. Perhaps his delirium and food deprivation led him to act the way he did, but for the strangest reason, Light didn't care. It hadn't even been a full day and Light's schedule and way of being was already shifting.

He didn't shower last night like he normally would have, and he hadn't even picked out his clothes for the next day before falling asleep. Now he practically assaulted L in a public dressing room? England must be like a poison for people like him, affecting his sense of normalcy with its perpetually rainy weather and attractive accents… His attention shifted when he spotted L's inky mess of hair. The author tried to make as little eye contact as possible as he heard the pedestrians talking around him. He walked up to Light, scowling.

"Now that you've had your fun, may we depart? I'm sure you're quite hungry and I am as well." He shuffled his weight from foot to foot, adjusting his new leather jacket awkwardly. Light smiled and nodded, grabbing L's hand despite the momentary protest.

"Of course, I'm about to pass out due to malnutrition. Lead the way to the nearest restaurant." With that, they headed to check out, earning strange looks from the cashier when L wanted to wear his outfit out of the store. She glanced over to the now naked mannequin and stifled a laugh as she rung up the total. L frowned in chagrin and Light's fingers squeezed around the author's hand, refusing to let go. After all, L looked cuter when he blushed.

"Thank you!"

It took all of Light's self-control to not start stuffing his face with the food spread before him. He and L had just barely made it to one of L's preferred restaurants before it had started pouring, a restaurant named 'Dolce', and Light had ordered the largest steak they offered. Weighing in at about one and a half pounds, Light's eyes were much smaller than his stomach. The waiter walked away, slightly concerned for the brunette's mental state as he salivated at the plate of food. Light peeked up at L once for conformation before cutting through his meal. Being Light, he systematically cut the steak into quadrants, and then began to cut each quadrant into bite-sized cubes for orderly consumption. Typical.

L smiled at the boy and picked at his own meal: a humble Caesar salad with very little croutons and parmesan cheese. He decided that now would be an appropriate time to discuss their future plans. After pouring himself a glass of wine from the bottle that had been resting in an ice bath on their table, L cleared his throat. Light looked up, but didn't stop eating.

"So Light," L began, "I think it's time that we decide our plans on how to make the next 2 years operate as smoothly as possible." Light nodded maturely in response so L continued. "Unfortunately for the first 6 weeks I'll be commuting rather frequently from work to our apartment so we may not get many nights to see each other or eat dinner together." Light frowned a little at this.

"May I ask what exactly is so important?" he said, a little disappointed.

"It's necessary," L said, more sternly than he had meant to. The brunette blinked and nodded after a moment of consideration. "Anyway, after I get those loose ends tied up, we can actually do what you want or go wherever you want. I only needed to be in England to visit my main…headquarters for lack of a better term; I tend to get my best writing done there. It's where it all started after all." L smiled, and Light grinned in return, unexpectedly reaching across the table to grab L's hand.

"Like I've already said, wherever you go, I'll be right there with you. Besides, 6 weeks out of 2 years won't bother me a great deal." Light smiled and L felt his chest tighten. He really didn't deserve someone like this. Nevertheless, he continued to lie to and deceive the man he loved.

"Glad to hear that, Light." L replied, not sure what else to say on the subject. "But I have to warn you, I might be gone for a day or two at a time depending on what I have to do, or who I have to meet that day. I also might not be available to be called or contacted during parts of the day. Even so, I promise I will make time call you every single day that we are apart at noon to check up on you and just to hear your voice. I just want to get this out of the way so that you don't end up getting lonely or angry with me. Of course I'll make sure that Watari will be on call for you; he can drive you anywhere you would like or cook for you, anything you can think of he can make it happen." Light had returned to eating and was easily taking in all of this information; he didn't seem particularly surprised by what was being said.

"I expected that you would be quite busy, I'm sure I can find plenty of things to keep myself busy in this enormous city. I'm not the helpless child you seem to think I am." Even though Light was joking, L still couldn't help but be worried. What if Light had a panic attack and L wasn't there to calm him down? He'll be fine, L, you always let yourself imagine the worst scenarios. Right, right, everything would be just fine.

"Whatever you say, Light. In any case, this goes into effect tomorrow morning and I'll be leaving early so be prepared." Light rolled his eyes and laughed.

"Well then I'll be up before sunrise to see you off, and to make sure you eat breakfast. Can't have you writing or working on an empty stomach can we?" L shook his head in bewilderment and Light frowned. "What is it?" I don't deserve you, Light…L looked up and smiled, squeezing his fingers around the brunette's hand gently.

"Nothing. It's nothing."

The next morning was tough on Light, his sleep schedule was still in complete disarray but he had promised to make sure that L got to work okay. He quite literally rolled out of bed at 5:00 am, though L was wide awake, already in the kitchen making coffee before Light could even brush his teeth and hair. Light stumbled into the barely-lit kitchen, trying to put on a smile for the author's sake. They were together for a while until Watari rang the doorbell, signaling that it was time for L to leave. It was a quick and hasty goodbye, but Light wasn't exactly worried. He was far too tired to worry. Once L was gone, and the sun had already risen, Light decided that it was already too late to go back to sleep, and there was really only one thing that could fully wake him up now: coffee. The thought in his mind, he got dressed and went through his morning routine before heading out. The streets were a lot less disorienting in the daytime, everyone looked more or less normal, but as expected, the roads were swapped. Coming from America, the world's melting pot, no one was surprised at the fact that there was a Japanese man walking down the street. The reason why they were staring was for a completely different reason.

His skin hummed in pleasure when he felt the admiring stares from pedestrians walking down the sidewalk; he lived for that feeling. Light would never tell anyone but he got a slight high from the random attention he attracted from strangers. He knew he was hot, and he loved the fact that others appreciated his amazing physique. That mindset may have been a bitter side effect from his prostitution days, a period in his life that he wanted to wipe from his memory.

There was a coffee shop down the street that Light recalled seeing as they drove into town a few days ago. Now that it was daylight, it looked incredibly inviting. Light enjoyed a cup of coffee from time to time, and it would give him a distraction for at least a few minutes. He began walking and within minutes he was on the stoop of the coffee shop. He pushed the door open; It swung open with a tinkling welcome bell, and Light was immediately hit with the smell of freshly percolating coffee and homemade scones. The space was rather small, enough for about 3 tables and a few loveseats scattered throughout the café. At most, only 15 customers could fit at a time, making it extremely cozy. Aged and dark-washed woods were used for the interior, from the floor to the chairs, to the crown molding, giving the store a quaint charm. People chatted quietly from their seats and Light couldn't stop the peaceful smile on his face as he took a spot in line.

Light put his hands in his pockets and began scrutinizing the rustic architecture, his fingers brushing against a slim square of plastic. It was one of L's many credit cards, an omnipresent reminder of L's support and complete trust. Light's fingers wrapped around the card, silently praying that the next 6 weeks would fly by.

"Ah, damn it," the person in front of him cursed under his breath, digging into his own pockets and turning them inside out. They were empty. The cashier frowned impatiently as he waited for the man to pay up, but it seemed like he was out of money. Light watched on for a few moments, feeling a mélange of embarrassment and pity for the other man, before finally doing the right thing and taking the card from his pocket and tapping the man on the shoulder and leaning around him.

"I've got you." Light smiled warmly, not really looking at the man before sliding the card on the counter, winking at the female cashier who was actually trying not to swoon. The girl blushed deeply but rang it up easily. The man turned to Light, smiling in chagrin.

"Thank you, but that really wasn't necessary." Light shook his head.

"It's no problem." He looked at the man's face and was pleasantly surprised at what he saw. The man was at least 23, with a smooth face and angular jaw line. He had jet black hair, a bit like L's with the exception that it was longer and layed in sweeping layers around his very attractive face. His smoky charcoal colored eyes were framed by a pair of sharp, sophisticated glasses. Wow this man is quite…handsome. The thought flitted through his mind before he could catch it and Light blinked, stepping back a foot, praying that the man wasn't telepathic. Highly improbable, Light, telepathy doesn't even exist. And even if it did, it would require a massive amount of brain power which, come on, I would be able to do it already. *metal facepalm*.

"Well, is there anything I can do to repay you? I would like to pay you back for the 2 pounds. Oh, my name is Mikami, Teru Mikami." Mikami reached out his hand and Light shook it, subconsciously waiting for the now common nip of electricity he felt when he and L touched, but there was nothing but smooth flesh. It was a little disappointing but absolutely inviting.

"I'm Light Yagami. Do you live around here?" After letting go, Light slipped his hand pack into his pockets, wrapping his fingers around L's card again.

"Yes actually, I've been living in London for as long as I can remember, I frequent this coffee shop on my way to work. Today is one of my few days off." Mikami sipped at his coffee and Light shifted his weight from foot to foot, about to take a very large and perhaps presumptuous leap.

"In that case, I have a way you can pay me back. I'm going to be living here for a while and I have no idea where anything is in this city. If it isn't too much trouble, it would be nice if you could show me around." His tone was hesitant, as to not border on being rude. Mikami could refuse if he wanted, he could easily say no and walk away and Light wouldn't feel bad about it. After all, the request was a bit pushy considering they had never met. Still, Light was very surprised at Mikami's next words.

"Of course, whatever you want to do, your wish is my command, Raito-sama." Light thought the knight-of-the-round type bow that followed was a bit much, and the fact that his man used the Japanese pronunciation of his name along with that honorific was strange; but he was still flattered. Mikami chuckled at the brunette's confused and frankly weirded out expression. "Too much?" Light nodded, cocking an eyebrow.

"Yes. How about you just call me Light?" Mikami smiled charmingly in a way that made Light forget how potentially strange this man could be. There was something about that determined gleam in his eye that made Light uneasy yet curious to learn what went on inside his mind.

"Of course. I suppose I was getting a little carried away." Teru chuckled and rubbed the back of his neck. "At any rate, shall we go? London awaits us." Once again, it could have been easy for Light to just walk away from this man and forget about the 2 pounds. He could have kept the fact that L cared for him and trusted him in mind and not get tangled with Teru Mikami. But still, 6 weeks would be a long time without any sort of real company. It wasn't like Light could ever forget his feelings for L just because someone new came into his life, no matter how marginally attractive this new man was…

"Lead the way."

"Wow, I cannot believe how amazing that restaurant was!" Light practically gushed. Mikami had been showing the brunette everything about the city, from typical tourist attractions to hole-in-the-wall stores and locations that could only be known by locals. Light wouldn't admit it, but he was actually having a decent time. They had been talking all morning and Light was surprised to find out that they had much more in common than he initially suspected.

As it turns out, Mikami was a Prosecuting lawyer and had graduated at the top of his class at Cambridge University. This man was very smart. And he seemed to be a tad obsessive compulsive which Light could identify with. Mikami was a germaphobe, which was a trait very close to his own heart. The raven haired man carried sanitary wipes and hand sanitizer in his coat pocket and used them to constantly clean his hands and door handles. Mikami was also a perfect gentleman, he held every door for Light, paid for their lunch (as it would seem, he had left his wallet in his car), and kept a subtle and respectable distance between them when walking. Noon was steadily approaching and Light could tell he was forgetting something, which didn't happen often.

"Of course, a lot of English food gets a bad reputation. Some of it really is terrible, but if you know where to go, you definitely won't starve here." Mikami smiled and adjusted his glasses on the bridge of his nose. Car horns blared in the busy streets of London as Light tried to wrap his head around walking on the left side of the street. Dark clouds were beginning to form in the west, encroaching on their sunny day. A little known fact: amongst all of Light other neurotic tendencies, he also had Astraphobia, the fear of thunder and lightning.

"I see that now, I was told that British food was awful by my—" Light stopped. This was something that offered continuous stress and annoyance. What was the current status of L and Light's relationship? They weren't quite an item, but they were definitely more than friends. Light sighed and took the easiest route. "—A good friend of mine. But I can see now that he was pretty wrong." Mikami just smiled and looked down, his hand brushing against Light's as they walked together. While it may have been an accident, the brunette drew his hands in his pockets. He definitely did not want this man getting the wrong idea.

"So Mikami, I—"

"You can call me Teru." The raven haired man interjected softly. Right then, Light decided that he needed to make a few things clear. Even so, the man had been so polite and nice this whole morning, Light didn't want to be rude.

"Teru, I have to be honest with you. I definitely appreciate all that you've shown and done for me but I'm here with someone, someone I…think I'm intimate with." Teru nodded understandably, not seeming the least bit put off.

"I understand, and I wasn't trying to make you feel uncomfortable at all. By the way, if you don't mind me saying, you don't sound very confident about being intimate. Is she not ready for—?"

"What? No, no, I'm homosexual." Light was surprised about how easily that phrase came out of his mouth. He as also surprised at how forthright Teru was being. It almost bordered on discourtesy. "Also, I'm not sure what we are. We're not together per say, but not…"

"Not quite friends either?" Teru supplied easily. Light nodded and smiled sadly.

"Exactly," he sighed. "I can tell that there is something between us and he invited me to come here with him while he was on business but…" Before he could speak again, his cell phone began ringing in his pocket. He checked his watch; it was noon on the dot. A pained smile spread on his face as he excused himself from Mikami's presence to take the call he had been subconsciously waiting for all day. "L?"

"Light, I've missed you today." Just hearing L's voice seemed to fill an empty void that Light didn't know existed until that moment. He sighed happily.

"I've missed you too, how's your work going?"

"Everything is fine, I've been in and out of meetings all day with my PR people and at the behest of my publisher, I'm already starting on my next installment of the Autumn Silence series which I really didn't want to do for at least another 3 months because I don't want my proverbial well to dry up too quickly and if that happens then—"

"L, please calm down! It's only been one day and you're already stressed out!" Light frowned in concern, listening as L took a few composing breaths. "Feel better?"

"Much. I-I guess being back in London is just making me a bit frazzled. All of my work is stationed here and I'm much more popular in the UK. My manager says that I have to make my first public appearance soon, I don't think I'm ready for that yet." L groaned in raw aggravation and Light felt a pang in his chest, he didn't like hearing L so frustrated.

"It's okay, L, you don't have to do anything you're not ready for. It's day one and you're going to give yourself high blood pressure and then you'll end up having a heart attack and in the hospital on the verge of death while I'm crying over your withering body and I don't know if I can handle that right now!" Light expected to hear words of encouragement, but was met with a peal of laughter from L's line. The brunette didn't like to be laughed at but he was still relieved that L could lighten up a bit.

"Don't worry, Light, I promise you I won't die from this. At any rate, how has your day been so far? Finding your way around the city? Or are you still at home?" Home. That word held a lot of gravity for Light. Home meant that you were in a place that you could come back to after a long day at work and be with someone who would still kiss you and hold you even when you reek of greasy food. It meant you both could walk around in your underwear all day and not be the least bit embarrassed. It was a heavy word for Light, considering he had never had a home. Although he lived with Matt for quite some time, they were more like brothers and roommates, with strict boundaries. In a home, those dividing lines didn't exist.

"No I finally left, I actually uh…" Light wasn't sure what to say next. Would it be okay to tell L about Teru Mikami? Nothing was going to come from it anyway so did it matter? Surely L wouldn't be the type to get jealous; also, Light didn't feel comfortable about keeping something like this from the other man. Even so, he decided to approach the situation carefully. "I met someone in the coffee shop a few blocks from…home. Before you say anything, it is a man and I offered to pay for his coffee when he was a little short. He's just showing me around town as a favor and that's all. Nothing else." Light looked back look at Mikami who waved back easily, he seemed to have taken a phone call as well. Light waited for L's reply for what felt like an hour.

"…Is he attractive?" L grunted. Light choked back a chuckle at the author's question. So he was the type to get jealous. The brunette smiled, trying to be serious. He took a covert peek back at Mikami who was thoroughly engrossed in his own conversation. His face was symmetrical and smooth, his glasses making him appear professional. Looking down further, Light noticed for the first time that he was wearing a suit. A tailor-made suit that accentuated his toned biceps and overall just fit him very well. Wow, he really was…

"No, he's not attractive at all," Light crossed his fingers. "I promise." L sighed in audible relief and immediately loosened up.

"Hey I have an idea, how about we stay in tonight? I'm going to be leaving around 5:30, should be home around 6. We could order Chinese take-out, rent a few movies, and then see where the night goes from there. Also, there are a few things I want to talk to you about." Light couldn't do anything but smile. Was tonight the night L would finally give him some insight of what happened between them in the past?

"That sounds great, L. I honestly just can't wait to see you, it's too bad it's only a few minutes past noon. At any rate, I'm going to be heading back to the apartment in a little while so I'll leave you on your own."

"Okay, I'll see you then…I love you, Light." What?! The brunette's blood froze in terror as he floundered for a response. L had said that to him already but it was before they had left for England and Light was in a state of extreme panic so he wasn't even sure he really heard it. But now, there was no doubt, no mistakes, no time for awkward pauses. What do I say? If I wait to long or say nothing, he'll think that I don't love him. Do I? I haven't been with him long enough to be sure. I've never loved anyone before, never felt love from anyone before, and for the first time in a while, I'm speechless! I have to say something, just say something, say something, anything! It's already been 20 seconds; he's waiting for a response, what do I do? WHAT DO I DO?

"Yeah, I—I'll see you later then, bye!" Click. Light's was mind already moving in a thousand directions on what L's reaction could be. Did he just screw up something huge? He paled, exhaling sharply. He glanced over at Mikami who seemed to be finishing up his own phone conversation which seemed too convenient. Light slipped his phone back in his pocket and walked back over to the other man, who looked a little upset. "Is something wrong?" Light asked once Mikami was finished with his phone call. Teru smiled sadly and Light had a feeling he knew what the man would say next.

"Light, I'm very sorry but that was my office, they need me to come in suddenly, and on my day off of all days! I really hate to leave you when there's still so much more London to show." Light felt his brain sigh in unexpected relief.

"Oh, no it's completely fine, you don't need to apologize; I understand. You've repaid me ten fold, and I was thinking of heading home soon anyway." He watched Mikami's face fall slightly and realized he had made a mistake. "Not that I wanted to leave you, Teru!" he added quickly, "I'm just starting to not feel very well, I think I may be coming down with something, all this new air you know?" He coughed into his hand for show. Mikami nodded sympathetically and Light almost felt badly about lying to the man.

"I see, I can drive you back to your place if you just tell me where you live, my car is just around the corner from here."

"Sounds like a plan."

Within a few minutes, the two men were inside Teru's silver Lexus, the engine purring as they cruised down the streets. As they approached the apartment, it got quieter and quieter as cars began to generally disappear. Light tried to keep a conversation going, asking broad, open-ended questions about Mikami's job as a prosecutor. He talked earnestly and easily, going on about his own notion of justice; Light just nodded absently, staring out the window at the looming storm clouds that seemed to be getting closer by the second. Frankly, that made him nervous. As Mikami spoke, Light felt himself calm down, the gentle chatter soothing his fraying nerves. In about 15 minutes, they were pulling up to the apartment.

"Looks like we're here," Mikami said, pointing out the obvious.

"Mmhm," Light murmured, "and once again, thanks for all your help today, I really appreciate it."

"Think nothing of it; I was glad to be of assistance. By the way," the raven haired man reached into his suit pocket and fished out a small piece of cardstock, "here's my business card. If you ever need help again or if you ever want someone to talk to, feel free to give me a call or even just drop by my office. I'd love to hear from you again." Eaughhh, there's that word again, LOVE, and I hardly even know this man! Light grimaced inwardly. Doesn't he think he's being a little too forward? I believe I've established that I'm involved with someone, so why is he acting like this? Still I shouldn't be rude.

"Thanks, I'll be sure to do that." There was something about the way Mikami was looking at him that suddenly made the spacious car seem incredibly cramped. Light smiled tightly and tried not to show his discomfort as he opened the passenger door, slipping out quickly. There wasn't much else to say as Light said his goodbyes and final thank you before sending the other man on his way. Once the Lexus was out of sight, Light let his head loll back, letting out a tired groan into the sky. "God what is going on with me today?" He padded up the four steps to the door and opened the door, immediately struck with a thought. He hadn't locked the door when he left that morning.

Back in Manhattan, Light never locked the door when he left, whether it was for work or anything else, because nine time out of ten, Matt was at home. He could and would beat anyone to death if they even dared to step foot in their old apartment. Yes, Light had a key; he just never bothered to use it. If Matt was the last to leave, he would lock the door and that would be that. Now that Light was alone, he knew then that he had to get into habit of locking it every time he went out.

He went inside and closed the door behind him, purposefully locking it, and stepping out of his shoes. He put them by the door and took off his coat, hanging it in the appropriate closet. Well now what? Light thought, It's barely 1 in the afternoon, I've eaten and I don't want to watch television now, L won't be back until at least 5:45. Hmm. If all else fails, take a nap right? It made sense, and with that storm rolling in, he didn't feel like being awake when it hit. Plus, he needed a few hours just to recharge after this morning. He headed to his bedroom and sat on his bed, suddenly feeling drained of all energy. Too much social interaction tended to do that to introverts.

The air conditioner kicked to life, the hum of the whirring unit right outside his window. His mind slowed to a comfortable crawl, the normal thoughts quieting as he lifted his own shirt over his head and folded it neatly at the foot of his bed. The pants followed and Light slipped between the sheets, feeling protected by the cocoon of blankets. It just invited him to fall asleep amongst the absolute comfort and warmth, and that's exactly what he did.

BOOM! Light's eyes snapped open at the sound of thunder cracking overhead. It was strong, powerful, and utterly frightening for the brunette who was woken in a cold sweat. His astraphobia was nothing compared to his panic attacks but that didn't mean he wasn't anxious. Light got out of bed, quickly tip-toeing to his suitcase in the closet. He dropped to his knees, unzipping and pawing through the bag for a small medicine case. After a few minutes, and a few scattered items of clothing later, his fingers brushed against the hard shell of the box he was looking for. He lifted it from the bottom of the bag and zipped it open.

Light had a prescription for Xanax, an anti-anxiety medication that had been filled about 3 years ago. The original bottle was still practically full. Even though he was a victim of many panic and over all anxiety attacks, he hated taking the medication because of the side effects. Impaired thinking and judgment, dizziness, and blurred vision were only a few of them, and they usually weren't worth the trouble. However, because Light was alone, in another country, and his heart rate was racing out of control, he decided to take one.

He cracked the top off and popped one of the horse tranquilizer-sized pills into his mouth, crushing it to powder with his teeth. The taste was absolutely horrible, but it was one way Light coped with the anxiety. The rancid taste distracted his from his fears, making everything else seem much less important. As the medicine seeped into tongue, he felt his nerves ebb away into serenity, and he started to actually enjoy the sound of rain pounding on the roof of the condo. It slowly dawned on him that it rained and stormed often in London, which could pose as a potential problem, but Light just didn't care.

He looked back at the clock on his nightstand, it read 5:00 pm, an hour before L said he would be home. That meant Light had an hour to change, freshen up, and look utterly adorable for L. Well, adorable wasn't exactly the word Light was going for, fuck-able was a more apt phrase. In any case, Light was fully intent on getting laid tonight. The impaired judgment was beginning to come into play as the brunette practically skipped to the bathroom, turning the shower on full steam. Since he was only wearing underwear at the time, it was a quick task to slip off the boxers and hop into the shower, wasting no time lathering up and washing his hair.

Twenty steamy minutes later, Light clambered out of the shower, clean and refreshed, wrapping a towel around his waist and one around his head. He chose his outfit for the night, his favorite pair of worn-in sweatpants and a navy v-neck. The sweatpants were missing the string in the waistband so they rested very loosely on his hips. The v-neck was formfitting, showing off every single contour of Light's perfect torso. Oh it was going to be a good night. He decided to let his hair air dry, happily changing ("accidentally" forgetting to put a new pair of underwear on) and walking out into the living room and sitting on the couch. With about thirty minutes left to kill, Light decided to turn the television on and zone out, trying not to shiver in the lofty living room. 'How I Met Your Mother' was on, one of Light's favorite shows. He was pleasantly surprised that it aired in Britain; Barney was always his favorite character….

It was pouring rain when L left his limousine, lightning cracking overhead along with a peal of thunder to follow. Watari had offered to escort L inside with an umbrella, but the author declined for no particular reason. It was only 13 steps to the front door, L was positive he could brave the rain despite the fact that he hated getting wet. Even so, he tiptoed through the puddles, hopping up the stairs two at a time.

It had been a very long day, being hounded by emailed and phone calls and children from the orphanage. All the while, trying to write his next book. He finally invited his manager, Touta Matsuda, to Wammy's House for the first time, who tried to contain his irritation at the fact that L, world renowned author, worked in an orphanage. The children pestered them both all day but at least L was understanding and tried to entertain them as much as possible. Matsuda on the other hand, was not good with kids, and spent most of his day in an office.

He didn't do a whole lot for L in general, other than acting as a go-between for L and the general public. He also acted as a proxy when L Lawliet was requested for private meetings with various publishers and PR representatives. Still, L always thought that Matsuda was an absolute idiot. He couldn't hold up any sort of intelligent conversation, and he never understood any of the cuttingly sarcastic remarks aimed at him which made him a viable target for L's daily frustrations. Today was no such exception. That aside, L was very relieved to finally get back home to be with Light.

He found the brunette slumped over on the couch with the TV on. Light was sleeping, is chest moving slightly with each inhale of breath. As to not disturb the younger man, L slipped his shoes off and set his bags on the kitchen counter. He retrieved a towel from the bathroom to dry his hair and hung it around his neck as he went to gently sit down beside his roommate.

"Light," L murmured, poking the boy's shoulder softly. He immediately stirred; his eyes fluttered but didn't open. He began to mumble something but L could hear clearly, so he leaned in closer.

"No, I said it was forty-five dollars for an hour, condom required…" Light sighed and his face relaxed again. L tried to remain composed. Condom required? What the hell kind of dream is he having? Is he dreaming that he's a…a prostitute?!

"Oh my…" L poked Light's shoulder a little more firmly, definitely worried at this point. The brunette's eyes fluttered and then opened completely this time. They were bleary, confused, and rimmed with unshed tears. L's brow puckered in concern but one blink later, the tears were gone and light's expression relaxed.

"You're back," Light yawned, "I was planning on being awake when you got here but I guess I dozed off. I'm sorry." L smiled a little.

"It's fine, I'm glad you're returning to a more normal sleeping schedule." Light knew this wasn't the truth, his anti-anxiety medication had a side effect of making him extremely drowsy. L didn't need to know what much though. He nodded in agreement then pointed to the large paper bag in the author's lap.

"So what'd you bring?" he asked easily. Instead of replying, L reached into the bag and pulled out a small white box, a Chinese take-out container.

"There is much more inside, I didn't know exactly what you preferred so I purchased a myriad of items for you to choose from. Please, help yourself, Light." He snapped his fingers and dug into the very bottom of the bag to retrieve 3 movies. "I also brought a few movies that I just picked up, I don't exactly know what they're about but upon first glance you apparently have the choice between a cheesy romantic comedy, a badly dubbed samurai movie, and a gory horror flick." Light honestly didn't care so he covered his eyes with one hand, and randomly pointed at the movie. It was the cheesy romantic comedy. Of course. L simply nodded in response but didn't object to the choice. After finally emptying the take-out bag of its contents and artfully arranging them on the coffee table (as artfully as paper boxes can be arranged of course), L decided that he would finally change and get dry before settling down. He left Light on the couch, but not before ruffling the brunette's hair as he passed by with a low chuckle. L knew that would make the younger man flustered, which was exactly the reaction he was hoping for. Light was fun to tease.

After L had changed and got settled on the couch, Light reached for a small container of lo mein and a plastic fork. Contrary to belief, just because Light was Japanese, it didn't mean he could properly use chopsticks. L had already popped the DVD in the player and clapped twice so the room went dark, only illuminated by the flat screen.

The movie itself wasn't particularly original: boy meets girl, girl likes boy, they fall in love, boy does something stupid to make the girl angry such as falling for an ex-girlfriend, and the rest is history until they get back together in the end with zero thought. All through the movie, L and Light slipped into critique mode, tearing the movie's illogical and over-emotional fallacies apart into bite-sized pieces.

"'I know in my heart'? What the hell is that supposed to mean? It's not even a valid explanation," Light muttered, crossing his arms across his chest. L chuckled.

"It pretty much means: 'I instinctively believe it and refuse to analytically think about it because I am emotionally attached to the concept and don't care if it is actually true as long as I get to believe that it is true.' Love is like poison to people like us, it has little or no room for logic and reason; it's something you're supposed to just feel. I've always had a difficult time understanding that concept." Light pursed his lips.

"That's not always the case; some people just might not have experience with love so they are unable to react in a way that may be acceptable to most individuals. If you were given the keys to a tank, would you be able to control it?" L cast a side-long glance in Light's direction.

"You can figure out anything with intuition and a little initiative." Right as the words left his mouth, he already knew Light would have a solid rebuttal.

"Then why can't you apply that mindset to the concept of love?" The brunette was sure he had backed the author into a corner and was already preparing his mental victory dance, until he heard L's reply.

"Perhaps some individuals simply aren't wired for love." L's tone wasn't irritated for clipped. Light couldn't figure out why the atmosphere had suddenly changed. I don't know why but…he seems so lonely right now. Light glanced over, L was crouched on the couch like he always was, thumb in his mouth as he gnawed on the skin. His covered his face so Light couldn't see the author's expression. L bit down viciously, blood spurting onto his hand and mouth. Light gasped worriedly and reached for L's hand, pulling it from his mouth.

"L, don't do that! You're hurting yourself, and getting blood on your clothes. Are you alright?" Light frowned in concern. L didn't move from his position, but allowed Light to hold his hand.

"No, I'm fine, it's…no big deal." Light was relieved for a moment but then got off of the couch in a rush, releasing L's hand. Was it something I said? Light thought to himself.

"Don't move, I'm going to get you a bandage," he walked quickly to his bedroom, his mind humming with worry as he grabbed his stash of emergency first-aid. Band aids were at the top of the bag naturally. He grabbed a small bandage and a tissue from his nightstand before returning to L's side. Light sat on the couch and held L's hand, extending the author's thumb. L didn't move or say anything. "Can I clean that up?" he asked tentatively. No response. Taking that as a sign to move forward, Light unwrapped the band aid and proceeded to tend to the small wound. Being unable to stand the heavy silence, Light began to absentmindedly fill it. "You know, you need to stop biting your nails. Do you have any idea how many germs are under your fingernails? If something is bothering you, you can tell me. Maybe that's something about you that may never change—"

"Light, do you love me?" L spoke directly and suddenly, his eyes boring into Light's with an unsettling intensity. The brunette was absolutely blind-sided, and he let his hands drop to his lap.

"What brought on that question?" he was trying to sidestep a mine, but L wouldn't be deterred.

"Please do not answer my question with another question. When I called you earlier today, you never responded to me when I said I loved you. To be honest it rattled me a bit, because I was unsure of your feelings toward me. Well, I'm through beating around the proverbial bush and I demand an answer." What was Light to do? I knew this moment would come. Something like this would never have gotten past him, Light thought to himself. I only wish that I could have come up with an adequate response for this. He knew his feelings for L, and he was sure that L knew too, but Light had just never said the words. He knew the implications and complications that came with love, and he knew it lead to heartbreak and disappointment. Always.

From what Light could remember, his mother hadn't always been a bitter and abusive drunk. When light was very young, she had been an ideal mother. Caring, sweet, always calling him 'honey', playful, and nurturing. And she smiled constantly. Light never thought anyone could be more perfect, he loved her so much. It wasn't until Nick came into their lives that everything went to shit.

Nick was wild. He was the kind of guy that was okay with waking up in a random woman's bed in the morning and who would be completely wasted by 9 am. He also had a mile-long criminal record at the NYPD. He was everything Light's mother wasn't—and she loved Nick for it. They would go out drinking and not come back until late the next day, leaving 4 year old Light to fend for himself for hours on end. If that wasn't enough, the fighting came next. These fights weren't heated arguments that were resolved in an evening, these were screaming matches. Bottles and chairs were thrown, there were fists and vicious rape, door slams, and sometimes the fight would make its way into Light's room. In the beginning, Light's mother did her best to keep Light safe, but after a while, she didn't care. And although the fights were terrible, the aftermath was volatile.

Light soon learned to stay in his room and keep silent for at least 24 hours after the initial fight was over. Any sooner and it wasn't safe. Most fights would end up with Nick gone and his mother home, never sober and dangerously silent. Light could clearly remember sneaking out of his room, the first peek was always the worst. His room was only a few feet behind the couch where his mother was usually passed out with an empty bottle of scotch barely clutched between her fingers. The kitchen was only about 10 feet farther. The TV would be on, but it wouldn't be on any particular channel; sometimes it would just be static. Light would take one step, holding his breath to see if his mother would stir. When she didn't, he would creep towards the kitchen as quickly and quietly as possible. Eleven steps, a dozen, a baker's dozen, almost there; there was a bag of bread on the counter he could have, even if he had to pick around the spoiled bits—

"Uunrg, Light," his mother's voice cut through the silence, immediately sharp and crude, "if I see you, you will regret it. You're the cause of all this, it's your fault. I never want to see your fucking face!" If Light had been frozen, he was sprinting back into his room. He slammed the door and locked it before she had lurched off the couch, pressing his back against the door. His heart was racing and terror gripped his mind as he heard the sound of her heavy and uneven footsteps reach his room. Light tried not to cry out as she began to beat on the door with her fists, sometimes kicking it, shaking it in its frame. She would curse and yell, her words slurred, but it would never last long.

After a few minutes, she would finally stop and trudge back to the couch with one final cutting remark, and Light could safely slump to the ground. Shaking and weak from hunger and fear, he crawled to his closet, past the clothes and into the darkest corner, pressing his back to the wall and curling his knees to his chest. One breath, two, three, then the tears. Light buried his head on his knees and sobbed as quietly as he could. His stomach in so much pain because he hadn't eaten in almost 5 days, he was bruised and battered, and his hair was coming out in clumps.

Light remembered the stories his mother used to read to him about superheroes rescuing the innocent, saving them from the wretched situations. He cried even more knowing that no one was coming to save him. No one even knew; there was nothing left for him to hope for. When Light ran out of tears to cry, he curled up on his side and did the only thing he could: sleep.

Light was finally brought back to the present, realizing that he was still with L. He still had to answer and he couldn't just curl up and sleep his problems away like he used to. After all this was real life. L was staring at Light, a firm expression on his face. His eyes suddenly narrowed and his eyebrow puckered as he came to a slow realization.

"Light, do you not love me?" L's voice was quiet and honestly, heartbroken. Light felt tears prick his eyes but he didn't cry, the recent memory of his mother still fresh in his mind.

"No, L, I do, please understand me." The words were forced but now that they were out in the open, he knew he had to keep going. "I do love you, I promise to you with my life that I do, it's just that…" Say it, get it out now, say it. "I don't deserve you. You've done so much for me and I have absolutely nothing to give you in return." Light's chest was heavy with the words he was about to say next, but he couldn't get his voice above a whisper. "I'll never be enough for you, L. I'm worthless."

"Stop it. Right now." L spoke sternly. "Look at me, Light." The author gripped Light's shoulders, holding him away at arm's length. The brunette's head fell onto his own chest, his bangs covering his face so that L couldn't see his face. "I said look at me, damn it." After a long moment, Light finally raised his head. The deadened expression on Light's face nearly broke L's heart, but the lump in his throat didn't deter him. I never want to hear you say more negative thing about yourself, Light Yagami.

I don't care about your past, or what people have said about you, or even what you say about yourself. All that matters is right now and forever, as long as I'm alive and breathing, I'll be at your side. And you know something else? No matter what anyone says, you are the best thing that has ever happened to me, and don't you dare forget that."

Light didn't even know how to react.

"…I had no idea," he murmured sadly. L frowned, not really at Light but at himself for not being able to understand a way to resolve the situation.

"If I'm not doing something right, Light, let me know. I'm not the easiest person to get along with, and I don't always show my emotions to the best of my ability but I promise I will work on it if that is the problem—"

"No, no, L, you're perfect," Light almost wanted to laugh at how L could be so analytical at a time like this. "It's not you, it's most definitely me. I guess a person who has never known love, can never know how to react to it for the first time." L was silent for a moment, his mind whirring at a million miles a second, trying to figure out the best choice of words to express himself, when the idea suddenly struck him. Yes, after all this, it was definitely the time now.

"Light, I know I've already messed things up, but just give me a chance." He was suddenly very serious; his eyes burning into Light's with such passion that it even shocked the author. "Let me show you love." In one swift movement, L leaned forward and captured Light's lips with his own, trying to force as much emotion and passion into one kiss as humanly possible. He needed to show Light how he felt, even if he didn't have the words to say it. L threw all inhibitions aside; every negative thought, every bit of time he spent worrying about the past or the future, and decided to only worry about here and now. Because in reality, it was all that mattered.

And I shall stop this chapter here. It was hard to actually find a place to stop but it was getting pretty long, but I wanted the lemon to have a chapter of its own (which it will) and I'm very excited about writing it, I hope at least one person it happy about reading it in the future!

I promise to be a bit more accurate about my posting times (I'll try to keep them within a month of each other, I won't allow myself much longer than that if I can help it).

Lots of love to everyone reading this, it's really great to be back :) 3