A/N: Riiight, so this will need some explaining. Over on deviantART I've done some experimenting with cosplaying Beyond Birthday as a female (partly because I thought it was a neat idea, partly because binding hurts). Being the writer that I am, I wanted to play around with a gender bent version in story form as well. This was my first attempt at it, it was done quite some time ago, and for the most part it is kinda fail. I wasn't going to post it up at all, but in going through the dusty corners of my hard drive I found it again, decided I still liked it too much to scrap it, cleaned it up some more and here we are. So, highly experimental, still not quite there, but I would love feedback, guys!

Betas: SkyTurtle, Voice of the Shadow Realm, Breena Beeks Marie.

Music: I Feel Perfect by Porcelain and the Tramps

Warnings! This piece is rated T for some gore and mild sexual themes.

Disclaimer: Death Note and related characters © Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata. Death Note: Another Note and related characters © NISIOISIN.

Exquisite Devil

Raven Ehtar

Pale foundation covered too dark skin and the blemishes that were a result of stress and a diet of sugar. Black eyeliner daubed along already dark bags intensified the appearance of someone who got little or no sleep. A combination of hair gel, mousse, a blow dryer and a flat iron created a look that insisted that it was as natural as rolling out of bed. Contacts slipped over claret irises dampened them to a deep and absorbing black.

Beyond Birthday leaned back and smiled at the reflection the mirror presented. Beautiful. So close to the original that it could have been the detective himself, but with a certain… vicious elegance the original could only envy. L had a lot going for him, appearance-wise. He was so laid back and rumpled that he came out the other side of sloppy and came out attractive. It was quite frustrating at first, trying to emulate that. Now, though, now Beyond had that and had refined it into something a little more fitting.

Slender fingers untwisted the cap of a small bottle. Working carefully in the dim light, nails were touched up and re-applied with black polish. Beyond considered the little tube of black lipstick a moment before deciding against it. Too much for tonight, she decided. Gloss would do, and her leather choker. She readjusted her shirt, a loose tee, but still form fitting enough to show her curves.

The darkly shadowed reflection smiled again, a gentle upward curve of pouting lips. Skin of creamy porcelain, contrasting eyes of coal, hair tussled and glossy, a little longer than L's, and an expression that could freeze your blood or send it pumping wildly through your veins… yes, Beyond Birthday was very proud of the image entrapped within the mirror. Cruel allure wrapped around a mind even the world's greatest detective couldn't deny. Was it unfair for Beyond Birthday to use her looks, her body to her advantage? Not really. It was like her brain, it was a card she was dealt. Not using it would be like deliberately crippling herself, and the world was ready enough to kick you down without giving it any help. Besides… L did it, too. He just used his appearance in the other direction, to make himself seem harmless and goofy rather than the threat that he was. They did the same thing, the two of them, they just utilized what they had in slightly different ways.

Beyond Birthday grinned, the mirror reflecting rows of sharp white teeth. And her way was so much more fun.

She stood, looked herself over in the mirror from head to hips, where the mirror's edge got in the way. Yes, a balance between careless disarray and self-aware narcissism had been achieved. It was strange how even L's posture could look so… suggestive in the right situations. Beyond smirked and picked one of the strawberries in the little bowl on the vanity.

And it wasn't as though she were the only one who thought so. She didn't think of herself as attractive for no good reason.

On the darker side of the room, where the light of the candles she had lit didn't reach, stood the bed. The blankets rumpled and tossed, but the darkness hid all else from sight. It was fine, she didn't need to see, she could use her ears. From the sound, the dripping had finally stopped. Ten minutes had gone by since she had left the room, possibly more. She would need to leave soon. Ah well, she was almost finished, anyway.

Dropping down to all fours, Beyond Birthday crept to the bed, her form melting into the shadows. Avoiding the large and rapidly cooling pool of dark fluid around the foot of the bed, she shoved aside the blankets, brushed back a long lock of pale hair from the face staring sightlessly up at the ceiling. The fine features wreathed in darkness showed an expression that might have been bewildered, but in the dark it looked accusatory. Beyond pouted at the face.

"It's not my fault, you know…" she murmured to the corpse. Tracing a thumb along a cold bottom lip, she remembered how soft it had felt an hour before. How it and its partner had smiled, how they had pursed together flirtatiously, how they had parted to let a pink tongue wet them, when they had formed around a desperate gasp of confusion and dread. "It was just your time to go."

The body jerked as Beyond retrieved her knife from its chest, fresh droplets spattering across white sheets. She carefully cleaned the blood from the blade. It wasn't until every last smear was erased that she sheathed and put it back into her bag. All of the makeup was stowed in its proper baggie and followed the weapon into the bag. Using only the tips of her fingers, she ate another strawberry.

She wanted to clean the whole room thoroughly, but now wasn't the time for that. There would come a time when she would have to wipe down rooms from top to bottom, but this wasn't it. This was only a hotel room, and she had already cleaned away all of her own prints, that was enough for now. When her real time of killing came she would remove everything. Now it would only point to this being more than a random killing, which she didn't want. Not yet.

A last look in the mirror, a flick of her hair, and Beyond Birthday left the intimate room behind. It was a long road yet to Los Angeles, and she would need another place to sleep for the night.

A/N2: To anyone who has read the manga Battle Royale there are some pretty obvious similarities between this girl!B and Mitsuko Souma. My personal notes to myself on future attempts for a girl!B: less vain, more creeper. ^^;