Okay, so my story with Johan dying sort of fizzled out. So, I'm taking another shot at this, but Johan is alive this time. Enjoy, read and review :)

Ring! Ring! Ring! Ring!

Tenma ran to answer the phone, getting there the second before the answering machine turned on.


"Doctor. Tenma? This is Reichwein."

"Oh? Hi, it's been awhile," Tenma said brightly. "How've you been? I haven't seen you since Johan's trial…"

All the happiness suddenly drained out of him. Johan…

"That's exactly what I was calling you about," Reichwein said. "You see, I'm currently in charge of working with Johan in the psychiatric ward. The trouble is, I don't seem to be getting anywhere with him."

"What do you mean by that?" Tenma asked, shifting uncomfortably from one foot to the other.

"I can never get him to talk to me. Whenever I ask him something, he pretends he didn't hear me. As a matter of fact, he is refusing to speak at all."

"And why are you calling me about this?"

"Because you seem to know the boy better than anybody else. I'm calling to ask if you could come down here for a bit. At the very least, he should talk to you."

Tenma felt his heart skip a beat. See Johan again? The very thought of it was enough to freeze his blood.

"…Are you serious?" he asked.

"Yes, I am. I'm sorry, Doctor, but I'm running out of ideas here, and the boy seems to respect you. Please at least come see him."

"…Okay. I'll be down as soon as I can."

Tenma hung up the phone, his hands shaking. He stood there for a full minute before picking it up again to call and say that he wouldn't be showing up at the hospital that day. He then showered, dressed, and began the hour-long drive to the mental institution where Johan was being held.

A million images swarmed through his head. The innocent looking ten-year-old boy with a bullet in his head, looking so fragile and weak. Relying on Tenma for his very life.

The nineteen-year-old who murdered one of Tenma's patients in cold blood, before turning to look at him with those ice-cold eyes, his kind, calm smile contrasting with the horrible thing that he had done.

That same young man, looking completely broken when his sister forgave him. His face soon became cold again, as he threatened the life of a child.

…What would he be like now?

Mechanically, Tenma parked his car and turned off the engine. It was too late to go back now.

Walking through doors and metal detectors, Tenma eventually found a very relieved-looking Reichwein.

"Thank you very much for coming," he said. "Johan is in the room right over there."


Tenma opened the door, unconsciously holding his breath.

He was nothing like Tenma remembered him. He seemed to have lost weight, his cheeks slightly hollow. His blonde hair, which normally would have been neatly combed, was disheveled. He wore the simple blue clothing of the patients at the hospital, instead of the formal suit and tie he usually wore. This man, this boy, looked up at Tenma with dead eyes, all life or luster gone, fixing him with a silent stare.

In short, he looked dead.

"Doctor Tenma."

Johan's voice was quiet, barely a whisper. He said the man's name as if it were a fervent prayer.

"You've come."