Well, so many of you who reviewed for my last Mello x Sayu story asked me for another one, and I finally got an idea! Once again, this takes place during her kidnapping, but it has a lot of AU in it too (I think it's mostly AU, actually).

Note: Everything in between the two '…' is a fantasy. Just read on and it'll make sense ^^

Disclaimer: I do not own Death Note or any of its characters. Nor do I own Breaking Dawn or the rest of the Twilight series, or the concept of sparkling vampires :P (Nor do I mean any offense by what is said about the novels. After all, this is Mello's POV).

The door squeaks as it opens behind him, but he doesn't bother turning to face his men as they enter.

"She's 'ere," they report with grunts, and he resists the urge to scoff. Of course he knows she's here. He's the Boss. He created this plan, he's seen it happening, he knows every single little detail down to the tee, and he's known Yagami Sayu had arrived before she'd even stepped foot in their hideout.

"I can see that, morons," he snaps, unable to completely let go of his short temper. "Did you lock her up?"

"Yes, sir," one answers. "Tied 'er up too. She's a tiny little thing." Some jeer at the thought of her weakness, but they cut themselves off abruptly when he whips around his head and glares heatedly, snapping off a piece of chocolate with his teeth at the same time.

"I didn't ask you that," he says coldly, and they shift in discomfort at his sharp gaze. Oh, yes. This power is elating.

His chair scrapes against the wooden floor as he stands up, tucking one hand into his tight pants. Without giving any of them an explanation, he departs to the basement to see her himself. What does the daughter of a Yagami look like, anyway?

With a smirk, he coolly pushes open the door, sucking on the piece of chocolate in his mouth as he descends the stairs. His eyes take a moment to adjust to the absence of light, and soon they flicker over to the jail cell. He can just barely make out a small figure – she is a tiny little thing. Decent-looking too, he decides, though the circles under her eyes are very unattractive and her hair looks like it's been grabbed roughly a few times too many. Which it probably has, knowing his men.

She's yet to realize she has a visitor. With her arms tied behind her back and her legs bound as well, her eyes wide and tearing up, she looks like a captured deer, or trapped rabbit. Yes, the plushy animals analogy suits her perfectly. Her incessant shaking is something that should have been amusing on any other occasion, but it isn't. Not with her. She's too...innocent, too pure. That soft, pampered skin shouldn't be matted with so many layers of dirt and grime and tears. Those delicates hands of hers shouldn't be bleeding because she's dug her fingernails too deep in her fear. And those doe-like eyes of her shouldn't be completely broken.

Has he done this to her?


He snaps off another piece of chocolate as he feels his eye twitch. He hadn't meant to do this. It's just that the more logical part of his genius brain had known that Yagami would never hand over the notebook without blackmail, and the more cruel, detached part of his genius brain had known she would make the perfect bait. And she has, because the chief of police will soon be on his way once he learns of this, and he'll get what he wants.

So why doesn't this feel right?

Is it because he's done this with no thought to her whatsoever? He'll probably leave her with emotional scars, and physical as well, if he's not kidding himself, because the mafia is rough. He doesn't always mean to be so uncaring, but his intellect has taught him that becoming close to others can only lead to misfortune.

But for just that one moment, as he looks down at Yagami Sayu's trembling, frightened form tied up in a moldy jail cell, he wonders what could have possibly been if he had not been born a genius.

.. ღ ..

"Keehl-san, how nice of you to finally join us," his teacher states grimly, pushing his glinting glasses farther up his nose and clutching the book in his hand tightly.

The yellow-haired youth gazes back casually with his bag carelessly thrown over his shoulder. He looks only bored as he gives the teacher a breezy shrug. As his sensei clenches his jaw and begins a furious rant about manners and respect and punctuality and all those useless things, he resists the urge to yawn, and instead gazes out at the classroom. Some students look amused, others disapproving – prissy brats, he cannot help but think – while others are too zoned out already to even realize someone's just walked in twenty minutes into their lecture with disheveled clothes and an attitude. He gazes back with just as much boredom until a certain someone catches his eye.

Sayu is glaring at him furiously from her seat by the window right in front of the teacher's desk – nerd.

His mouth angles up just slightly into the cockiest of smirks, just enough so that only she notices the difference. She looks positively scandalized.

"Takeda-sensei," he interrupts his teacher, causing the man to break off abruptly. "Don't you think you've wasted enough class time already? There are some students who'd like to learn." No need to mention that he's not one of them.

Takeda-sensei fumbles around with his book and glasses in a dorky way. "Very well," he finally mumbles. "Go sit down."

And he takes his seat right behind Sayu, grinning all the while because she refuses to look at him and he thinks she looks cute when she's trying so hard. He puts his bag on his desk, taking care to stretch out his legs and rest them on the back of Sayu's chair. His shoes hit her hip and she pointedly scoots forward just enough to avoid them. He only grins wider and slides farther down his own chair, hitting her hip again. She scoots forward again, and he slides farther again. This continues for a while until she's the farthest she can go without falling off her chair, and he's smirking because his feet are still pressed against her and that means he's won. He loves winning.

When the lunch bell rings, he finally drops his legs, and she swerves in her chair swiftly, opening her mouth furiously with her eyes blazing, like she's ready to yell at him. Before making a peep, however, she decides against it, clamps her jaw shut, and turns back around with a huff, crossing her arms tightly. He leans forward, endlessly amused.

"Something you wanna say to me, Yagami?" he taunts her.

"I'm not talking to you," she retorts with a sniff, her nose in the air.

He leans back. "Fine. Hey, Matt!" he calls to his friend by his nickname, and the copper-haired boy runs over. "I'm having a party this weekend. You coming?"

The boy lights up. "Totally."

Out of the corner of his eyes, he sees Sayu stiffen and holds back a laugh. They both know they have a History test this coming Monday, and he just knows she's itching to turn back and lecture him on the importance of studying and the dangers of partying. Their class representative has always had a way of providing him with endless entertainment with her goody-two-shoes antics. She is a cop's daughter, after all.

"It'll be cool," he goes on to say, just to rile her up. "Miller's bringing barrels of beer from his dad's liquor store, and Misa's dropping by too."

Sayu's fists clench her skirt as she resists turning around.

"And she said she's bringing some college friends."

Her face is turning red.

"And my foster parents will be gone too -"

"Minors who drink without the direct approval of of their parent or legal guardian are violating the law, Mihael, Mail!"

Ah, there she goes. He's known it was coming soon enough. Sayu swerves in her seat again and both he and Matt listen to her lecture in amusement, having heard it a thousand times before.

"And don't you know how bad it is for you? It can cause liver damage, and nerve damage, and depression. What if you get alcohol poisoning? People can die by choking on their own vomit. Sixty percent of teen deaths in car accidents is because of alcohol. If you get with illegal possession of alcohol as a minor, there will be consequences."

He waits until she's done with her rant before ever so causally turning his head and giving her a Look. "I thought you weren't talking to me?" he says dryly.

"I'm not," she snaps. "Stop talking to me."

He and Matt share a grin as she turns her back on them again, crosses her arms, and pouts.

When the school day ends, he waits until only the two them are left in the classroom, and then he starts walking behind her closely. She grows irritated a little too quickly for the fun to last, but he smirks anyway.

"Stop following me, Mihael," she snaps, glaring at him.

"I'm not following you, Miss Conceited," he retorts smoothly. "I just happen to be going in the same direction as you."

She huffs and stomps her foot, but when she moves for the door, he smoothly blocks her path, slipping an arm around her waist.

"What are you doing, Mihael -"

"You know, Yagami," he smugly cuts across the red-faced girl, "if you wanted me to ask you to go to the party with me, you didn't have to do it on such a roundabout way. I would have asked you to be my date, anyway."

She tries to look strict as she bats his hand away. "Not everything is about you, Mihael," she shoots back. "I would never stoop so low as to go on a date with you."

He steps closer, licking his lips. "Oh, please. You're always butting into my business, Sayu. You just can't get enough of me."

"Th-that's not true," she stutters, and then knits her eyebrows together. "I don't even want to go to your stupid party, anyway."

"You sure?" He looks at her suggestively, placing his hands on her hips and pulling her close. "Fine. If you don't want to party, then you don't have to party. Instead, my folks are out of town, and my bedroom door has a lock on it."

She blushes furiously at his implications, unable to even get a word out in her embarrassment. He finds that adorable, and, laughing boorishly, he suddenly leans forward and steals a kiss from her lips.

.. ღ ..

Yes, he decides. He would definitely have been a delinquent, in a regular high school because he would have been adopted by regular people from a regular orphanage since he wouldn't have been a genius and wouldn't have gotten into Wammy's.

And then he would have met Sayu. She would have been his foil, his anchor, who would have kept him from completely ruining his life. They would have danced around their feelings for years before finally waking up in a bed together with no clothes on and getting together, but only if he gave up drinking for her and she promised to try and not be so much of a stick-in-the-mud anymore.

If only.

Forcing himself out of his fantasies, he returns to the task at hand. In the time he had been lost in his imaginings, they'd contacted the police force already, and he calmly speaks to Yagami Soichiro, the father of the woman who's been on his mind. Adjusting the phone placed on his ear, he smirks over at his men, eyeing the terrified and bound Sayu now sitting in the corner of the room.

"However," he says blankly, continuing his speech and trying to sound confident and smug, "the exchange for the note will be...Yagami Sayu."

He can hear their gasps of surprise on the other side of the phone, and his men look like they want to jeer in victory. He sends them all a warning glare, also letting his eyes flicker to the girl quickly before averting his gaze, because he knows his next words will probably cause her to break a little more, and he has no desire to see that.

"If I detect any large movements within the police, I will kill your daughter."

Even after he hangs up and his men begin to buzz in excitement about their plan finally being set into action, he keeps his gaze on the phone. He can feel her eyes on him, trying to evaluate whether he had meant every cruel word he had said. He doesn't look back. He doesn't want this Sayu, so frightened of him and probably disgusted, too. Instead, he vaguely thinks back to his fantasy, where she'd so boldly stood up to him and commanded his attention.

Her father would have disapproved, he thinks. Just like he would disapprove of any relationship between them now, in reality. But the Mello and Sayu in his fantasy – they wouldn't have fucking cared. They would have stuck together despite the odds and would have run off hand in hand and eloped one night. It seems like their style.

As he takes a bite of his chocolate and briefly allows himself to watch his men try to intimidate a sobbing Sayu who's crying out for her father, he wonders what it would have been like to have a wedding night.

.. ღ ..

He waits nervously at the altar, constantly fidgeting with his cuffs and tie as Misa skips down the isle in a black dress of all things with wilted roses in her hand. He catches Matt's eye, and his best man glares at him as if to say, 'Calm the fuck down!' Easy for him to say.

The entire room goes deadly quiet all of a sudden, and he gulps as a hush falls over them. How could he ever have thought he was ready for this? However, his breath catches in his throat as he sees his bride for the first time since she'd been whisked away because of some dumb ass tradition that says the groom can't even see his own woman when he wants to. It suddenly hits him how beautiful she looks, dressed up in a white, flowing dress and all dolled up with make-up. That radiant smile on her lips makes him lick his lips, which are itching to smile too, but won't in front of so many people. She looks composed and sure of herself, never faltering in her steps as she keeps her eyes trained on him with the softest expression he's ever seen on them.

Her father has a frown on his face as he walks her down the aisle, but they both know he's never approved. She'd once sighed over it's likeness to some trashy novel called Breaking Dawn, which had been her obsession for about a week, meaning he'd had to endure her talking about it for hours on end when they could have been making out – proof of how much he loved her. Though she hadn't appreciated it when he'd insulted the book.

"It's romantic," she'd argued.

"It's crap," he'd answered.

Now, it hardly matters who liked what and who didn't as her father gives him her hand.

"Take care of her," he says gruffly, and the threat in the words is clear.

He just nods, not taking his eyes off his blushing bride, who turns even more pink when she catches a glimpse of his love-struck expression.

And then they get married, with him behaving in front of all the guests that are mostly all of her family, but only because he'd promised her weeks before the wedding that he would do so for her.

They cut a cake – a gigantic, double chocolate fudge cake she'd ordered especially to suit his tastes. She feeds him a slice, smearing it all over his face because she knows that's his dream, and he pulls her close and starts kissing her neck, not caring about the camera flashes as he purposely soils her dress. She shrieks but then starts laughing, because she's married the man she loves and nothing can spoil this day – not even a ruined wedding dress.

He refuses to dance, instead pushing out Matt with some random bridesmaid. And as they steal the attention, he and Sayu sneak away, locking themselves in a closet and catching up on some heated make-out sessions he'd missed because she'd been blathering on about sparkling vampires.

.. ღ ..

He decides he likes that better than eloping. Though stealing someone's daughter and getting hitched in some dirty city with a suspicious priest definitely sounds like him, a proper wedding would be something he knows Sayu would prefer...If they were ever to get married.

If only.

With an irritated growl, he fidgets on his couch. The mafia men surrounding him eye him warily, afraid he's about to lose control of his temper for one reason or another, but he just sucks on his candy and glares at the leather covering his legs. It feels like it's trapping him.

Maybe because Sayu is trapped right now, back in her cold, dark jail cell. They'd long since returned her after the talk with her father. He doesn't need any reason for his men to keep traumatizing her anymore than they were, so getting her out of sight had seemed like a good idea. Now, though, as he watches her in the monitor hooked onto the camera in the basement, he wonders whether it had been cruel. There are tears streaming down her cheeks again, and he briefly wonders whether she is afraid of the dark. Or maybe of being alone – like him.

Well, that just doesn't sit well with him. He's known since young how it feels to be alienated, wanting to belong but realizing you're unable to. He wonders whether Sayu has ever felt that sort of loneliness in her life. Maybe by being overshadowed by her older, more intelligent brother...Well, he knows how that feels.

In that moment, Mello makes a vow to himself that if she was ever his woman, he would make sure she would never be alone.

.. ღ ..

When he comes home from his normal, mediocre intelligence job, he finds his wife crying hysterically on the sofa, curled up in on herself.

"Sayu!" he cries in alarm, dropping his briefcase by the door. "What the hell happened here!"

"M-Mihael," she mumbles out before choking into sobs again. "Oh, Mihael..."

"Damn it, Sayu. What happened?" he demands again, letting his rage seep through. Had someone dared to mess with his woman?

She shakes her head, unable to get a word out as she leans her head against his chest. He instinctively wraps his arm around her, though it's an awkward gesture on his part; he's still getting used to feeling more emotions than just hostility and lust. She sniffles and hiccups a few times to unsuccessfully get a hold of herself, grabbing his arm and tugging him down to sit next to her. Then, she straightens up enough to curl into him this time. Wordlessly, she points a shaking finger at the coffee table. His eyes stray to the table top, and for the first time, they land on a small, plastic bag.

He realizes what's inside, and his eyes widen in disbelief. With a hand he's trying desperately to stop from trembling, he picks it up and flips it over. There, on that small, white, plastic stick, is a red, vertical line. Positive.

She's pregnant.

"This is...this is great," he breathes, still staring at the pregnancy test as if it might just change in the next few seconds. "Sayu, this is fantastic news." They're going to have children! Never in his wildest dreams had he imagined this (despite the many nights he keeps her busy). With a sturdy hand, he grasps the rosary hanging from his neck.

Thank you.

"...I know," she deadpans, avoiding his happy gaze – or as happy as he can stand to show. He finally realizes that she looks rather downcast – not the kind of reaction one would expect from an excited mother-to-be. In fact, with her shoulders hunched and her breathing a little heavy, she looks lost and alone. It makes his stomach churn with unease, seeing her like that.

"What's wrong?" he questions her, cupping her cheek with his free hand.

"I'm scared," she whispers, looking down in shame. He immediately grabs her chin and forces her to look at him.

"Of what?" he wants to know.

"Of...pain," she decides, her cheeks flushing red. "Of not being enough. Of...not getting it right."

He laughs. "What do you think you won't get right?" he asks, struggling to use a gentle tone. Again, it's something he's not used to, though he's learning from her.

"What if..." She trails off, biting her lip in her anxiety before trying again. "What if I'm not strong enough to handle it?"

"You're plenty strong, woman," he interjects, smirking. "The proof is that you married me."

She smacks his arm lightly. "Be serious," she reprimands him, huffing a little and looking too freaking cute for her own good.

"I am," he replies, rolling his eyes. "Not just any woman on the planet could handle me, you know. Besides, if it worries you that much, you can squeeze my hand until it breaks in there if it'll make you feel better."

This makes her giggle, and he relaxes slightly. Her laughs have always set him at ease. Even when her laughter dies down, he knows the fear has passed for the moment, and that makes him feel proud. They sit in silence for a moment before she breaks it, needing reassurance one last time.

"You'll be with me, right?" she asks anxiously, clutching his arm and gazing up at him with wide, doe-like eyes.

"Every step of the way," he promises huskily.

.. ღ ..

"Mello, calm down, man."

"Don't tell me what to do, Matt," he snarls instead, getting right in his friend's face in his anger. Their random nicknames for each other had lasted all these years, but they're no longer just for endearment; now, they're who they are.

"It's not gonna help her for you to be freaking out out here," his friend points out lazily, not really bothered by his temper as he'd faced it so many times throughout their time together. Even so, his hand twitches towards his pocket, and Mello's sure he probably wants a cigarette right now. In fact, he could really use one too, to calm his nerves, but he's not a smoker. Plus, Sayu would kill him.

"I know that," he snaps, pacing in the hospital waiting room as he had been before. "You tell me what else I should do then, huh?"

Matt shrugs. "Beats me. She's your wife."

Gritting his teeth, the blond just starts pacing faster, even more aggravated than before.

"Ugh! What the hell is taking so long?" he finally exclaims in frustration. A sudden, frightening thought hits him. "You don't think...?"

"I'm sure they're both fine," Matt reassures him immediately, squeezing his shoulder for comfort.

It's been two hours since Sayu had been wheeled to the operating room. After hours of pushing and labor, the nurses had declared that the baby is too big and that forcing it out naturally will only cause it to bruise and Sayu to be in immense pain. He'd been asked to wait outside to keep the room clear of too many people who would only get in the doctor's way. He's been going crazy ever since.

"Keehl-san?" a nurse suddenly says, peeking into the room. He practically flies over to her, and she smiles broadly. "Thank you for being patient. You can come see them now."

He doesn't need telling twice, and he's rushing after her as she leads him to Sayu's room. Matt decides to respect the family's privacy and sits down to wait, pulling out a new game from his pocket that he's testing for the electronics company he works for.

The first thing Mello does when he sees his beautiful wife lying in the hospital bed, looking radiant in a white gown, sweat-coated forehead, and weary smile, is pull her head back and kiss her hungrily. He's upset that the damn doctors had made him leave and make her face this alone, and it's almost as if she can sense that from the kiss, because she laughs.

"It's okay, Mihael," she whispers, cupping his cheek. "You were with me as long as you could be and now, and that's what counts. I wasn't scared at all. Are you proud of me?"

'That's my girl,' he thinks proudly as he nods, and she giggles. After they subside, she wiggles over in the bed, gesturing to the space beside her, and he settles in, pulling her to lean against him. With an excited grin, she pushes out the bundle in her arms, and Mello catches his first glimpse of their son.

He's a tiny little thing, and he looks so fragile and weak with his fingers fisted so tightly compared to his own strength but so weakly compared to anyone else's. He hadn't expected the boy to be so...pink, but his chubby face is flushed just that color. It's just too bad that his lids are closed so tightly, because the thing Mello wants to see the most is his eyes.

Months from now, when their baby begins walking weeks before he should and starts talking even earlier than normal, he'll vow to do his absolute best to give his son the exact opposite life than the pathetic one he's sure he himself would have had, had he been a genius.

"He's beautiful, huh?" Sayu murmurs, lying her face in the crook of his neck, and her husband can only manage an awed nod of his head. With a wide grin on her face, she begins to cry happy tears as her two boys meet for the first time.

.. ღ ..

That would seem just like her, to start the waterworks for just about the most un-sad event in their life. At least then it would have been tears of joy, rather than anguish. Though he'd prefer a woman not to cry at all, he knows he could actually handle happy crying. Maybe that's why he can't bear to visit this Sayu in her cell.

Instead, he devours his chocolate as he monitors Yagami's plane closely. He'd had to steel himself before taking a picture as proof of the woman's safety, and she'd looked so pathetic that it had left a bad taste in his mouth, even when he had just allowed himself one quick look. At least it had finally put his plan into full swing. He's rather disappointed he won't get to see the look on Near's face when he brings the man underground and the genius realizes they can't track him by satellite. He's not stupid.

"He'll be here in a few hours," he barks at his men. "Call that idiot stationed on the plane and tell him to take control of it now."

They scurry away, looking for their communicators to call their fellow henchman. Once he's sure the room is empty, he switches to Sayu's camera and zooms in. She'd stopped crying long ago when her eyes had lost all the tears they had to offer to be spilled, and now she's asleep against the wall, breathing through her slightly parted lips so her chest heaves up and down. Soon, she would be confined in a small compartment with a gun pointed at her. The image almost makes him shudder.

As he tries not to think of the future, he remembers something he'd thought of in the past. He still doesn't know anything about her fears. He can tell she's scared of them and what they will possibly do to her, and he wonders if she's normally this frightened.

He's sure that if he wasn't her feared kidnapper in this reality, he could whole-heartedly be her protector.

.. ღ ..

"I'm home!" he calls loudly through the halls, shutting the door behind him. Sayu peeks out from behind the wall of their apartment, and she catches sight of the guest he's brought with him.

"Mail!" she squeals in delight, bouncing over to him and wrapping her arms around his neck for a hug. He smirks before returning the embrace.

"Oi, oi! Break it up!" Mello snarls, grabbing her shoulder and pulling her back, towards himself. "Whose girlfriend are you, anyway?"

She giggles. "Well, I see you every day," she teases. "But when Mail comes, it's a special occasion."

Matt laughs as he scowls darkly. "See if I ever bring you around again," he hisses at his friend. That's when he notices what Sayu's wearing; a small, black dress. It looks really good on her. "What's with the dress?" he asks, even more grumpy now that someone else has seen her in something so appealing, even if it's just Matt.

She takes it by the hem and spins around a bit to let him see it from all angles. "I just wanted to look nice for you," she says innocently, and then kisses his lips gently. He's embarrassed beyond belief and huffs before stomping away, even more annoyed by the peals of laughter he can hear from her and Matt.

"So," Matt says, still grinning at their display, even after their dinner, "I brought this new movie my company just put out for sale. Anyone up for watching it?"

"Yeah!" Sayu agrees right away. Mello grumbles but agrees, and the three settle onto the sofa, side by side.

And then Matt pulls out the movie. Mello notices when Sayu's eyes widen drastically at the cover, which features a figure clouded in darkness with only his glowing, evil eyes as a prominent feature, clutching a bloody knife tightly in his hand. Her face falls, but he chooses not to say anything, keeping silent as his friend pops it into their DVD player and settles in beside him.

"This'll be great," he says enthusiastically, pressing play.

The first scene is a mass murder, the sounds of a woman's horribly terrified screams echoing through the apartment, and Sayu instantly snatches the couch cushion, wrapping her arms tightly around it and peeking out from over the top when she can bear to. She tucks her legs underneath her, and as the movie progresses, she sinks farther and farther back into the couch cushions, trying to keep herself from watching. She's deathly afraid.

It's only when she starts whimpering at the sound of the villain's maniacal laughter that Mello sighs deeply.

"For goodness sake, woman," he hisses, and he makes a grab for her. She lets him pull her roughly into his chest, abandoning the cushion in favor of finding comfort in him instead, and buries her face into his neck. Matt's way too engrossed in the movie to pay any attention to them, and he looks like he's enjoying every minute of it.

"Don't watch," he whispers to Sayu, and she nods against his neck in complete agreement. A little awkwardly, he wraps one arm around her waist and twists the other into her hair, combing it to keep her calm. It almost drives him crazy when she sighs against him in appreciation.

"Mihael," she whispers after a moment, right next to his ear.


"...I-I'm scared," she admits weakly.

"I'm here," he says simply, and she instantly relaxes. Instead, she starts squeezing the life out of him whenever something too frightening for her pops up on the screen, but he only grunts and lets her continue, as long as it makes her feel better. She seems to appreciate that since she starts running a hand up and down his chest absentmindedly at the same time, and he smirks even as a woman on the screen gets stabbed to death.

By the time the movie ends, they're making out on the couch viciously. Matt clicks his tongue in disgust and leaves the apartment in such a rush that he even forgets his movie, taking care to slam the door shut on his way out. Mello doesn't care. All that matters to him is that Sayu is no longer afraid anymore, since she simply throws the movie cover aside as if it's nothing so she can lie back on the couch and pull him on top eagerly.

.. ღ ..

He calls for someone else to grab Sayu when her father arrives. He doesn't think he could man-handle her to her near death experience. It might not have been a good idea since the man who volunteers has a sick jeer on his face, but in his mind, it's better than going himself. Besides, he's sure to keep a close eye on the two as she's dragged away more roughly than she needs to be.

The plan's finally ready to be completed. He's hired a skilled gunman to play the part of a mysterious, ruthless stranger with a gun, and Miller's already been offered to be the sacrifice as the testing of the book. Now all they have to do is wait for him to die, and they can achieve what they'd wanted by kidnapping Yagami Sayu.

So, this is it. She's leaving, and once he has the Death Note, there'll be no need to see her again. He can no longer just turn on a monitor and watch her every second of the day if he wants to. He really hadn't meant for the experience to be so...devastating for her. But in that last day, she'd broken. He'd seen it in her eyes, and her posture, and her everything. She wouldn't be the same after this, which is just too upsetting; he's never known the true Sayu, only the captured one and the one he had fabricated himself. And now he never would, because she would never be the same again, and they would probably never see each other again.

So, just to hold himself together, he wonders what it would have been like to spend the rest of his life with Yagami Sayu.

.. ღ ..

They're both silently watching television in their living room when a news report pops up. A young reporter starts speaking into the camera, looking serious and professional.

"Police officers can't say for sure when the murders first began as there are signs that he's killed others, but the first victim was found some time earlier in the week," she's saying. "There's no evidence on the scene that could be used as substantial clues, and even after examining the bodies found, forensic scientists have yet to discover anything note-worthy." Suddenly, a large and fancy, black letter L pops up on a white background. "This morning, the chief of police of Los Angeles held a meeting with his team, and they were contacted by famous detective L, whose identity remains a secret. As of this afternoon, the chief announced at a press conference that they've partnered up with the mysterious L to track down the killer."

"I wonder who this L is...?" Sayu ponders, swinging back and forth in her rocking chair.

"I don't give a damn," Mello snaps, reaching for the remote with a shaking hand. "Damn, good-for-nothing police can't do anything right, anyway. Always blasting their sirens so late in the night and waking me up." With a huff, he turns off the television, not giving this shady L character another thought. It has nothing to do with him, anyway.

It's later in the day that he finally gets in a better mood. He's dozing off next to Sayu when their front door slams open.

"Grandma! Grandpa!" enthusiastic voices call out for them. Sayu smiles gently as a little girl and boy come bounding into the room, throwing their arms around their legs.

"Hello, dears," Sayu greets them kindly. With great effort, she pulls her granddaughter into her weak lap, showering her with kisses. The girl giggles uncontrollably. Their daughter walks in with a smile, her eldest son and husband right behind her.

"Mom. Dad," she greets them excitedly, swooping down to kiss their cheeks. He shares a nod with his son-in-law.

"Grandpa, Grandpa!" his youngest grandson yells out, tugging on his pants; after all those years, he'd finally outgrown leather. The beaming boy holds up a piece of paper. "I got a gold star on my picture!" he announces proudly. "I drew you, Grandpa!"

On the page is what looks like a skin-colored prune, and Sayu pats his arm while pursing her lips to keep from laughing as he tries not to be upset about the less than flattering depiction. He's only five, after all. And frankly, too much of a pansy to be his grandson, though he'll admit that he's rather fond of the boy.

"Let's go hang that up on the fridge," Sayu suggests kindly. Oh, great. Now he has to look at it everyday.

Their granddaughter holds up her paper too. "I drew you, Grandma!" she exclaims. There are two prunes hanging on the refrigerator after that, and he snorts when Sayu's face falls.

"I'm not that wrinkly, am I?" she whispers in concern, ghosting her fingers over her face.

He rolls his eyes. "You're fine," he assures her, but she doesn't look appeased. "I said you're fine," he repeats more firmly, and she finally relaxes and smiles.

It's late in the afternoon when their daughter starts flipping through some photo albums, giggling over the contents; there's one where she'd spilled milk all over the kitchen floor at the tender age of three and was absolutely soaked in it with a wide-eyed look on her face while Sayu freaked out in the background, one where she'd started crying on the first day of school and hugging her mother's leg because she hadn't wanted them to leave, one where she'd graduated and her parents had been smirking at her proudly as she'd posed with her friends in their caps and gowns. But when she reaches one near the end, where Sayu is lovingly kissing Mello's cheek only a few years ago, she sighs dreamily.

"How is it that you two have managed to stay together for so long?" she asks in wonder, beaming up at the two.

Mello swings an arm over Sayu's shoulder and mumbles gruffly, "As if she could get anyone better than me."

Both she and Sayu burst out laughing – though he'd meant every word – and Sayu even smacks his arm lightly.

"It's because we love each other," she answers their daughter with soft eyes.

He rolls his eyes at the mushy answer he'd expected from her, but he doesn't deny it, because they all know every word of that is true, without a doubt.

.. ღ ..

He'll be honest. That sounds appealing.

A life of mediocrity but togetherness. He's never thought of it before, but now that he's spent two days imagining it, it seems...appealing enough. There's a possibility it could have been – if he hadn't been born a genius. But, since his birth, he's been marked for a life of turmoil and loneliness, and he's learned to deal with it.

Sayu has too, he knows, since her brother is so gifted. As he watches with hardened eyes while Yagami clutches his daughter's sobbing form and rushes her out of her underground prison, he hopes that she'll get better some day. He wants her to forget this, if possible, and have the life he'd been imagining all this time, even if it's with another man. He deserves to let her go to some other after what he's put her through. He'll just never admit it out loud to anyone else. And because of that, Sayu will never know what could have been. Because she's gone, and they've never officially met or talked even once, but it's funny; she seems like the one for him, and he's not sure he could settle for anyone else anymore.

In fact, had they met in different circumstances, he's sure that he and Sayu could have been the greatest lovers the world has ever seen.

If only.

The end :)

Just in case you guys were confused, this was not the same AU storyline. It was different scenarios in Mello's mind about what their lives could have been like in any other moment.

So, let me know if you thought the "if only" concept was a little cheesy. I feel like it was, but it came to me randomly as the title for this story, and I couldn't resist putting it in after that, to tie everything together :P