Chapter 1: Search for the Missing

It was a few months ago, that Ikebukuro was peaceful as the town could be. Four months ago, the most violent public display was Shizuo launching a vending machine to the laughing informant. People, cops, humans, and the people now deep in the new "Ikebukuro" wanted that back. Murder had been on the rise, and Ikebukuro has become a populated ghost town. Gangs had grown vicious, and people often had been killed for just accidentally crossing gang lines.

The police had claimed all out war against the gangs. While it had created more jobs, meaning more people coming to the city, it also meant another rise on the death counter. Ikebukuro was going to hell, and taking innocents along with it. Some captured gang members swore they heard a song of violence that called them to arms. No one believed it, but everyone started to say it.

The song only heard at night.

Hospital Room 409

"Shizuo, this wasn't your fault." The man sighed a little, glad that Shizuo cared, but not enough to possibly level the hospital.

"Tch. If I didn't go take the call from my brother, you wouldn't have been jumped."

"You took a call from your brother. Which I told you to. We couldn't help this."


"Shizuo." He said sternly, giving a small smile. "I'm beat up a little bit, but I'm alright. Go home, take a break, we don't have any jobs until my leg is healed."

The blonde's fingers twitched, itching for a cigarette as he looked at Tom helplessly in the hospital bed. The man had gotten jumped by a group of thugs, and Shizuo chased them off moments later, but the pipe to the man's leg had put him out of commission. He was lucky nothing else happened, but this was Tom. Tom wasn't allowed to get hurt. He seemed cheery despite having his leg hooked up like a turkey with that halter.

"You know, one of the thugs asked, if you had killed Izaya."

Shizuo's eyebrow twitched at the name, but the silence was loud enough to Tom to guess he wanted to know why.

"They said it was your fault, if you killed him that the city was going to hell. We know that's all untrue."

"If I killed that flea, I would be in jail. He's too blood sucking to let me out on the streets if I did happen to wring his neck."

"I know." Tom nodded.

"Tch. Flea was always good in fucking up things. He probably fucked it up to make sure no one could live without him." Shizuo huffed, the mere thought of the flea sending rage through his body. He hated the flea so much.

But even he was smart enough to realize that with Izaya there, there was no one to make them suspicious of each other. Even the cops dragged him in and told him that they needed Izaya. The flea was that charming he supposed. With a mental growl, he wanted to throw something to the ground and step on it. The blond never did care for people wanting the flea. He was a dirty bastard.

Shinra even asked if he killed Izaya. Celty probably had her suspicions. He didn't kill the bloody louse. If he did, he would be proudly stating so, but keeping everyone else out of it. Tom got beat up because the stupid flea hadn't been screwing with people's lives. This would be what it was like when the flea was actually gone. Was he even gone? When he did run into his sisters, they said that he was alive. Though they hadn't talked to him.

Scowling further, he swore that he was going to go find that flea tonight and put him back to work. He wasn't going to sit here and let Tom and other innocent people be threatened by violence! "I'm going to go find that louse and put him back to work wrecking 'bukuro." He then snorted. Tom blinked, but didn't seem horridly surprised. "I'm not surprised that you said that. I hope you can find him. Despite what he did, he made our job easier."

Sighing he tilted his head in a small goodbye as he bid the man goodbye. "See you tomorrow." As he walked out the door, he slid his hands into his pockets. In one he fingered his lighter and in the other the phone he was going to call Celty on. Maybe she could help. The debt collector knew that she didn't like Shinra going on so many bad jobs. Apparently they were in something they couldn't tell him.

He just didn't want those two to get hurt. After all they were his only friends. Though Shinra offering him a prostate exam did quite cross the boundaries of friends. Quite a giant leap across the drawn line. He could spray it in spray paint and that crazy doctor would probably still cross it with no issue. Ignoring a woman who squeaked and ducked behind a corner he walked out the electric doors and pulled out his phone.

Texting the headless rider wasn't exactly foreign lately. They met much more often, because of the issues. Trading bits of information. It wasn't exactly enough for the two go on.

'We're going to go find the flea'.

It took a few minutes for her to respond, which he had lit up a cigarette and blew the smoke through his lips more than a dozen times. Hospitals weren't something he liked being a five mile radius near, none the less five feet away from the door. He really hospitals. Shizuo let out a small relieved sigh, letting the cigarette hang from his lips as he squinted at the screen.

[Good. I'm tired of Shinra dealing with these thugs. I don't like Izaya, but he's necessary right now.]

So he wasn't the only one who thought it? Well at least he didn't feel too odd going to find the flea. Who knows where the stupid louse even was? He hoped that it was somewhere near. Ikebukuro even, because he really didn't want to waste time going after his enemy. Letting out another puff of smoke, he texted back.

'Sucks. I'll be near the hospital. You'll see me.'

With that the debt collector started to walk closer to the street without a care. Izaya wasn't what he wanted to deal with, but like hell he was going to sit here and let Ikebukuro go to hell because he left business unfinished. Gritting his teeth a little, the blond let out a low growl. "Fucking flea. This is your entire fault." Shinra and Celty probably didn't even give a care about Izaya either, but they all needed him.

This was what he wanted wasn't it? As he left the parking lot, the fresh grass crushed below his feet, he heard something…singing. Looking over to the car that was stopped at a turn, he heard a male's voice singing. It must have been the radio, since only a few seconds after, it clicked to a newscaster saying, "Another hit from Nightingale!" then a commercial about burgers or something.

Shizuo really didn't have the patience to sit there and wonder what the heck it was, since Celty sped up moments later. Giving a small nod as she gestured to the back of the motorcycle, he got on the back. He always felt awkward on the motorcycle, but he never really told Celty. It always felt like he was riding a horse, not a motorcycle.

Shadows wrapped around his head seconds later in a helmet, and he held on as they shot off. Honestly, they had no idea where the flea was, so it was going to take some time. Shizuo and Celty had tried before to find Izaya few times before they had given up for just talking. They were going to find the louse this time.

The roof that Izaya hung out at? He wasn't there.

The streets? Shizuo didn't smell him.

City Park? Shizuo couldn't smell him either, and Celty didn't see him when she skirted around the area with her motorbike.

Shizuo however caught a hint of a familiar smell and bolted towards the series of alley ways. Either someone just put out rotting fish with a hint of the prideful skulking smell, or Izaya was around there somewhere. He grinned; he was going to pummel that louse into the ground. Shizuo's eyes narrowed as his body nagged at him. He was out of shape from not chasing the flea across Ikebukuro. Though that wasn't surprising.

Bodies weren't supposed to run that much unless they were bugs.

A song was grating against his eardrums as well. Who played a song like that at night? It sounded like crying. Gritting his teeth, he tried to block the sorrowful song out of his head, but it was something that kept burrowing deeper and deeper until he had to live with it. Gulping a little he felt something hit his heart, but nothing was there. He wasn't even going to pay attention to it.

Celty followed after him moments later, he heard the familiar neigh of her motorcycle. Shooter she called it. Still felt like he was riding a horse. Finally the scent grew strong enough where he stopped. "I know you're here flea! Get the hell out here!" There was no response. The bastard was probably just laughing at him.

Gritting his teeth, he peered around each corner, his grin widening as he stalked closer to that mop of black hair he was so used to seeing. However when he got a better look, his heart dropped into his stomach. Not that it was care of seeing the flea of all people looking like a skeleton, but that someone could be that thin. Was he even alive?

The body that was huddled against the wall was pathetic. He looked hollow, no meat on his bones that the debt collector could even see. He was curled up so tightly that Shizuo wondered if his bony ass knees went through his chest. Seeing him, made the music start to get louder, and Shizuo growled softly. That music would never shut up would it?

"Oi. Flea."

No response. The almost stark white body seemed to mock him somehow. It looked like one touch would shatter the man's body to shreds. Old wounds had been crusted in blood, and the dark color was almost a spotlight. He heard Celty's footsteps behind him and the startled stop he heard told him that she wasn't expecting it either.

Grimacing, he really didn't want to touch the body, but he did either way, and put two fingers under his neck. His eyes widened a minute fraction as he felt soft skin. Weren't dead bodies supposed to have slimy skin or something? The mocking face the both saw was a pathetic small grimace of pain. He wasn't sure how to even look at the flea's face with the intent to murder.

You couldn't murder that looked so helpless. One touch would break his skull into splinters. Shizuo suddenly was hyper aware of his strength as he focused on trying to find a pulse. Feeling its weak beat against his fingers he sighed, in relief or annoyance he didn't know.

"He's alive. We need to get him back to Shinra."

He gave a glance back at the headless rider, and she nodded stepping forward to encase the informant in her shadows, awkwardly making sure she didn't bounce him around too much. He could tell from the stiffness in the rider's body that she was nervous. Well he wasn't nervous, just mostly confused and a bit pissed off. Who the heck starves the flea like that? He didn't think that the flea couldn't deserve anything thrown at him…but starvation seemed…the least suitable thing for a skeleton like him.

He was already skinny.

Of course he pushed away the thought that starvation was something that made his skin crawl, and not even the flea deserved it.

Shinra greeted them, but with the news Shizuo gave him, he seemed panicked. He probably was thinking of all the things he had to do to get the flea back on the streets. Izaya looked smaller then ever, as if his jacket was five times too big for him, and the bony hands were no longer slender, it looked like someone had just stretched skin over bones. The sight sickened him. He hated it. The flea shouldn't look like that.

Celty carried him to the room, and Shinra shooed them out as he tried to get Izaya somewhat back on the road to not looking like a corpse. Shizuo sat down on the couch, and Celty went to the back for something. It was all up to Shinra now. Shizuo however wanted to sleep. That song while it grated on his nerves…it made him calm. As if he didn't need to throw something if someone pissed him off. Leaning his head backwards, he felt the song only get louder and louder, lulling him to sleep. He swore he was going crazy though. Shizuo felt fingers running through his hair, and a small chuckle as he snored lightly into dreamland.

Shizuo was startled awake four hours later as Shinra stomped into the kitchen and kept whining about something. He tried to listen, but after hearing a word that was over 18 letters long, he tuned Shinra out completely. Celty was looking towards the kitchen, and he realized the TV was on.

"That man has the most infuriating veins in the world!" Shinra whined as he filled a glass with water and joined him on the couch. "Now when he was healthy it was bad enough. I had to prick him like 6 times because he had thin veins. It's like his veins were saying 'Hahaha Shinra! I was there, but now I'm over here!' Gah." The man pouted and sipped on his water, apparently ignoring the two blank looks being aimed towards him.

Because Shizuo had no idea what Shinra was talking about, despite being totally in agreement with whatever part of the fleas anatomy he was talking about, and Celty, amused.

"What?" He voiced for the both of them, almost inwardly regretting the curious question immediately.

"Izaya. He has the worst veins in the world. I swear I need to make him drink five liters of water a day for the man's veins to be possibly healthy. If it's hereditary, I swear he has but put on this earth to annoy everyone trying to get an IV in him. It took me 30 minutes to get an IV into him with fluids! His body is so desperately in need of them, that if he wasn't in the state he was in I would it him for giving me a headache. Sticky veins my-"

"Shinra." Shizuo said bluntly, wishing the doctor would shut up.

"Right-Right. Izaya…as bluntly put was a few moments, if not hours away from death. To be honest he should already be dead. I've never seen a human body survive through that much withheld nutria- food and water." He corrected himself. "To be honest it's a medical miracle he's still alive. I'm not even sure how you found a pulse. He should be dead. Whoever did this to him, since I know Izaya would never let himself get like this, had probably let him starve for…at least over a week?"

The news somehow made Shizuo more upset than he should have been. Was it just because someone had the idea to starve someone? It made him sick.

"However…the broken arm, and the bruises. The wounds too. Those are much older, and the recent ones only make the older ones worse. The oldest guessing injury that I could put a time to was a month ago. There are more, that I could hypothesi- guess that have been there longer than a month." Shinra looked tired, and Shizuo realized that seeing anyone in that condition put a toll on him, just like it did them.

Celty's phone flashed suddenly and he looked up. Squinting he read out the letters.

[Why would someone do this to another person? Izaya wouldn't even make someone starve to death.]

She did have a point. While Izaya made that girl jump off a roof, -though Celty saved her-, he didn't seem to target people's body physically. In fact all he played were mind-fuckery games. So whoever did this was somehow sicker than Izaya himself.

Shinra sighed a little, probably having the same thought. "While Izaya is a cruel sadist…I don't think even he deserved this. It's painful. It's more painful than I could even dream of. Izaya, while he deserved a lot of things, he didn't deserve to be almost starved to death because someone got mad." He gave a glance to the blond debt collector and he scowled.

"He deserves to die, but he doesn't deserve to be starved."

"Same thing Shizuo. He was about to die. I didn't know if I had to show you. This is what you want from Izaya. His death."

Celty frowned typing something, but Shinra spoke again.

"I don't mind if you want to kill Izaya, but I want to make sure you realize what you are going to do to him. You're going to take the life of someone. Whoever did this was a sick bastard, and from the injuries I can tell that it was in a method, everything had a purpose. Every break, every cut. I picked out piece of barbed wire from his ankles." The doctor sounded angry.

"Whoever did this deserves much worse than you could ever think Izaya deserved. While physically he may recover, we have no idea what mental torture he was put through. I've only read about these cases. Do you know why Shizuo?" He paused, if waiting for a answer, but before Shizuo could open his mouth, he continued. "Because they all die Shizuo."

Celty had finally finished typing, and shone her phone again.

[Shizuo would never do that to Izaya.]

"I know he wouldn't. But he wants to murder Izaya doesn't he? This is what he wants. I'm surprised he saved him."

Shizuo snarled, standing up. "Shinra!" He snapped, tired of the accusation. Yes, he wanted to kill the flea, yes he wanted the flea to be in pain; yes he thought the flea should get what he deserved. However, no one deserved to be tortured and starved, because he knew while Izaya was a bastard, all three of the people here, knew he would never resort to such things. "I'm not going to kill the flea right now, and stop thinking I will. If I'm going to kill him, which I will since he's a bastard, I'll wait till he's good enough to fight back!"

"What if he never is good enough Shizuo?" Shinra stared at him almost saddened.

"Then I won't kill him. I have morals."

Shinra raised an eyebrow obviously questioning that but shrugged. "Just wanted to make sure you knew the volume of what you were promising. Izaya…will take a long time to heal. I'll probably have to transfer him to a hospital. I don't know if I can heal him here. Not with those extensive injuries."

Sighing, Shizuo sat back down on the couch. He wasn't as angry as he thought he would be. That song was still singing, but instead of sorrow…it sounded happy. It warmed his heart. Huffing softly, he looked towards the doctor once more before staring at the TV.

They were all more affected than they could think. He was going to punch the louse when he woke up.


I apologize in advance if my Shizuo is crappy. XD This was the first time I wrote him for more than two sentences. This does advance quite quickly, these chapters anyways. I've only wrote up to chapter three, so I'm unsure if I'll write any more if people dislike it. XD Review if you like it, cause I'll post more chapters ASAP.