Author's Notes: Howdy, everyone! This is my third story here on Fanfiction and my second in the GB category! However, this story wouldn't have come to if not for Mayumi-san that urged me to write this. She too writes GB fics. I guess I've been talking too much now so I'll leave you to enjoy reading. See you later, alligator.

Disclaimer: I don't own anything because if I did, the series would be all about Ban.

Beta for this story is Mayumi-san!

Chap 1- the Great Melons

It has been a bad day. A very, very bad day. Actually, this whole damn week has been all but good.

These things don't matter though, not when we have a plausible job within reach and two great watermelons within my grasp. I only need to stretch out my hands just a tiny bit to touch them, but I know how to be patient. I need to wait for the perfect time to reach out to them and squeeze.

First of all, I will have to wait until that fucking light bulb will leave. If he will leave.

So far, plan A – which is to be patient and wait until luck comes – does not seem to be working well. Plan B, on the other hand... Well, let's just say that it shortens the time span down a bit. Without ruining the chances of touching the great melons, of course.

Being a Get Backer, specialized in the retrieval business, my plans always work and this one is fault-proof. Not that my other plans are not fault-proof. Of course they are, and they will be if my partner, Ginji, would not be such a thick idiot. However, this one will work.

Confidently, I push my sunglasses up a bit on my nose bridge.

A smile graces my lips, which is more like a smirk. Ginji gives me an alarming glare. He knows that something is up. Oh, he knows me all too well. His brown eyes flutter back and forth between me and HEVN. You can really see how he starts to cold sweat in fear with the realization of what I am about to do.

"Ban-chan," Ginji utters the words weakly only for me to hear as he moves around uncomfortably in his seat.

His blond hair is a bit matted. It is truly warm inside the Honky Tonk during this sunny spring day. Ginji's hair is always unruly, but today, it looks like a mop, thanks to him not drying his hair properly after showering last night.

He is probably afraid that if I touch HEVN-san's breasts, I will be ruining our chances for working. And we truly need this one. Even though our business has gone up and we have the money to rent an apartment, we will soon end up on the street if we do not get a job fast.

I could see the logic in his worry, but HEVN is not going to deny us this job. That would be very resentful of her and who could hold a grudge against Ginji? The answer is no one. But to hold a grudge against me? Yeah, sure. That is pretty easy. It is my specialty to piss people off.

Ginji is a whole 'nother story, though. Hell, his puppy eyes can even make me give in sometimes. Not always though, just sometimes, when I think he looks stupid.

My eyes, which were focused on the great size of HEVN-san's breasts, do not pay attention to the small vein that pops out on her head, her eyebrows knitted into an annoyed frown above her emerald eyes. Neither do I notice how her lips draw into a tight line and how she shakes her long blond hair back from her face with a twitch of her head so that she can glare better. It is when her voice dies away and there is nothing but silence for a long time that I look up. I gulp when I see her stern face but even more when I see light bulb's face. His face is completely white with anger as he stares at me from the other side of the table beside HEVN.

God, why am I being glared at by two blonds?

Before light bulb gets the chance to open his mouth to smack me, I put on my best smirk.

"Ya pleased with having those for ya'self?" I ask him, nodding towards HEVN and her melons.

She looks even more pissed at this little snide remark and light bulb's grip on the table tightens even more.

Paul snorts behind his newspaper that seems to be glued to his face more so than ever. He has been standing behind the counter all morning reading, while Natsumi and Rena have been servicing the Get Backers' every need.

Rena's coffee is even drinkable nowadays.

Not that it is unusual that Paul would let them take care of the minor customers, but that he didn't even try to check if Rena's coffee was drinkable. Ever since the Get Backers have started to actually pay for the food, he had treated us as actual customers. Which was a bit unfair, it had never been like we were not going to pay back our tab.

There is barely anything better than to piss light bulb off. The only things I could think of that are funnier is to piss Monkey Boy off, and to squeeze HEVN-sans's breasts (of course).

"Ne, HEVN-san, please calm down. We really need this job," Ginji says, trying to drag her attention away from me.

Smart move, I thought. I really feel like another remark is laying on my tongue. This time, it will not be all too innocent and it would definitely offend HEVN.

As if the first one hadn't. A small voice inside my head says.

"Well, I'm not too sure if I want you to have it," HEVN answers then starts to stand.

Crap goes through my head before I grab hold of her hand hindering her from moving any further.

"Please HEVN-sama, I would do anything for your melo – for you." On purpose, I made it sound like I was going to say 'your melons' just to piss her off one last time before correcting myself.

I even said 'sama' to her. She will not be able to turn me down now. I smile sheepishly at her before I sit down again and gesture her to do the same. Though unwilling, she sits down again.

"Let's discuss business," I say and put on my best business face that she just has to comply to. If not, she will seem to be the unprofessional here.

She sighs at her defeat but repeats to us with an annoyed voice what she was saying before.

"It's a huge one this time and you're going to need help. Of course you'll be payed well for the work and the client is willing to pay the first half beforehand. However, you're gonna need help with the transport. Don't worry, though. I've already fixed everything and the others will come here any minute now," she says and glances at her watch to confirm the time.

I slam my fists on the table, standing up."WHAT? Others? We haven't agreed that others will be taking part!" I say with a raised voice, or explode at her is more like it.

This is not going according to plan. SHE is supposed to give us some easy job that would give us a lot of money and NOT press the fee. I have a feeling that she is going to do more than just press the fee.

"Gee, you're overreacting, Ban-kun," HEVN says and rolls her eyes at me. "I promise you, this job will certainly interest you. That's all I'm saying until the others come."

This makes me even angrier but before things could get out of hand, Ginji nudges at my shirt, making me look at him.

"Ne, Ban-chan. We really need this job," he says and looks pleadingly at me.

I let a stream of colorful swearing come out before I sit grumpily back down, realizing that he is right.

I lay back against the worn leather and breath in the aroma of coffee and smoke. The aroma calms me down somewhat, enough to tell myself that I am being somewhat unreasonable.

I can only guess who the 'others' are. It is hard to find people in this kind of business and even harder to find people that are actually GOOD at it. After all, being a retriever is no ordinary job. Neither is being a 'protector' or a 'transporter'.

Not that I mind. It only means that there are fewer competitors. There's not even a dozen in Japan that I would even consider somewhat professionals, and even they are not as great as the Get Backers with our 100% success rate. Out of the 'barely a dozen' that I consider profesionals, I could only think of Himiko, Kazuki, Shido, the Miruko Seven, the Undead and Jackal that are into this business as a full-time job. Even though I hate that Jackal bastard, I have to confess (at least to myself) that he is good. Maybe even the best fighter of all the other profesionals. However, we do not work WITH Jackal anymore. Against him, yeah, if we have to. Never 'with'. I find it hard to trust a man like that, who just killed for pleasure.

He truly disgusts me by being everything I do not want to be. It feels like watching what I would be, what I would have become if not for Ginji.

The bell at the door chimes as the door opens.

Two people step inside the small café – one shorter than the other and dressed all in purple. Her skin is slightly a shade darker then most people and her green-bluish hair stands in deep contrast to what most people would call normal. On the other hand, the man beside her does not look more civilized. He even looks more out of place with his wild dark hair tied up with a bandana and an eagle on his shoulder. Other than that, nothing looks odd with him. He is tall and well-built, and is wearing a black loose fitting T-shirt and khaki green pants.

As the door starts to close, the eagle leaves his shoulder and takes off, and they come inside with a gust of fresh wind following them. As the door quietly closes, the tension that had built up ever since HEVN had not told me anything more about the mission breaks.

I briefly wonder if there could be something that I have missed between the two when I see that they have come together. Before my mind can develop thoughts of Himiko finally having some kind of love interest, I shake it off. There's probably some logical explanation as to why Himiko came together with Shido, which she will probably share with us as soon as we settle down. She hates it when people thinks that she has any kind of love interest. When we speculated about her private life one time, she went on a rampage.

Before anyone of them had the chance to open their mouths, Natsumi literally attacks them with her greeting.

"Welcome to the Honky Tonk! Oh, it's you guys! Himiko-san, Shido-kun," Natsumi says and bows to each of them before she turns to Shido. "Shido-kun, it's been some time since you've been here. How's Madoka-san?" She beams happily at Shido, and his eyes widen in surprise at Natsumi's happiness of seeing him again.

When is that idiot going to learn that Natsumi is happy to see anyone? Besides, he always pays.

As fast as I utter that last sentence to myself, I mentally slap myself. Just because we have taken up a tab again did not mean it was permanent. It is only until we got an actual job. Which at the moment seems quite possible.

"I'll take a cup of tea, Natsumi-san," Himiko says, too impatient for small talk.

She was here for business and nothing else, even though Ginji has succeeded in banging into her skull that work is not everything. Come to think of it, she can actually just hang out lately. It's nice to see her doing normal things for once in her life.

"Coming right up!" Natsumi says and writes down her order before she turns to Shido.

"Eh. Whatever." Shido mutters, not really wanting anything but not daring to deny Natsumi.

The small girl can be truly frightening sometimes with her cheerful personality, always wanting to help and willing to serve the customers whatever mood she is in. A really old-fashioned way of thinking if someone would ask me. But for the moment, no one seems to be interested in my opinion.

"The usual, then," Natsumi says, taking his non-real answers as permission to freely decide what he will order.

Shido nods in agreement to that. After all, it would be rude not to buy anything.

Before he can open his mouth to thank Natsumi, Ginji jumps up on Shido's shoulder and hugs him in a really weird way. Instead of hugging him like normal people do, he hugs Shido's head, climbing all around him. Shido doesn't seem to be too comfortable with it, but he doesn't object. Which is fine, since I am not going to help him, anyway. He can suffer.

Himiko laughs to herself at the sight, her eyes glimmering gleefully. She actually looks pretty pleased to be here. Ever since she had been freed from the voodoo curse, she seems to be a bit lighter at heart.

Back then, even before she knew about that curse, there was a certain heaviness to her demeanor, as if she already knew that something was wrong.

I should not have kept it from her all those years, thinking that she would be happier without knowing. It had only added to her pain. It must have been hard for her feeling that she was something more then just human or maybe less then human.

Soon enough, Ginji calms down and greets Shido the normal way, and Shido ruffles Ginji's hair affectionately.

"You're here to help us, Shido?" Ginijs asks, happily clinging onto his leg.

"We both are," Himiko says.

Ginji smiles at her like she had just given him food and she cannot help but smile back.

Natsumi laughs at Ginji's ever-so-naive attitude towards everything.

"You really do love stealing our money, ne Monkey Boy?" I say as I light a cigrette. This has become my normal way of greeting him. Old habits die hard I guess.

"Just here to clean up your mess, Snake Bastard," Shido retorts with a smirk.

I take a long drag from my cigarette (Ahh, nicotine. There isn't much that could top it) as I give him an approving nod.

This is taken as a sign for us all to settle down around the table once again. I have to move in a notch around the table to let Ginji slink down beside me, and he sits down beside me and gives me a million-watt smile. He continues to smile as the rest sit down around the table. Not everyone can sit at our table so Shido settles for sitting in the booth behind HEVN.

Rena arrives one minute later with Himiko's and Shido's orders, and both of them flinch visibly when they realize who has been making their drinks. There is an awkward pause which should normally be filled with 'thanks' and 'you're welcome'. Instead, there is only silence. As Rena places their orders down on the table, both of them turn pale. So far, she does not seem to notice that something is off. When she stands straight up once again, she looks at them with eyes shining with expectation, wanting to please her customers with the best of her effort which is, mostly, not a very good way of pleasing your customers.

"Ne, Himiko-chan, Shido. It's good. Look," Ginji says. As if to prove his point, he takes a big gulp of his own coffee.

Do I need to mention that his coffee has gone cold by now? And that it has not tasted that great even before when it was actually hot? So when Ginji swallows the cold coffee, I am truly impressed with him. He barely even grimaces as it goes down his throat!

They do not look assured as he places his cup back down on the table, but when Rena's smile starts to fade at the uncertainty on their faces, they know that they have to drink it. They look at each other in semi-understanding before they lift their cups with dreadful faces and take a sip.

They swallow and slowly put their cups down while we all watch intently.

I silently muse to myself that there is no one that can fail with such a simple task as making tea that even Rena should be able to do it. Her coffee has even been drinkable in the last month.

None of them grimace. Both of them look a bit surprised over the taste even, or maybe they are just surprised to be alive at all.

"This is really good. What is it? Did you put some cinnamon into it?" Himiko asks as she had, with only one sip, analyzed the tea.

"Hai, just a bit." Rena nods and smiles shyly at Himiko before she turns to Shido and asks, "And you, Shido-kun. Did you like it? I never changed anything. I just made it as Master has taught."

"Uh, yeah it's good," Shido says and takes another sip of his specially made tea as if to strengthen his point.

"I'm so relieved that you like it," Rena says happily as she leaves us to discuss business.

I look at Himiko who seems to be lost in thought, wearing a sad smile that makes my gut clench. Whatever she is remembering must be before her brother was killed. Suddenly, her head snaps back up as if she had felt my stare. I raise an eyebrow towards her, inviting her to tell.

"I just remembered that long ago, Aniki would give me tea with cinnamon on especially cold winter days," Himiko says and smiles to herself.

That is a new piece of information.

That was apparently before I met them. We were only together half a year when it started to drag to the colder type of weather and everything had gone to hell. Maybe, if I had not messed up, we would have been drinking tea when Himiko came in with the cake.

Maybe if I had not ignored all the signs, even if Yamato had told me not to worry, that there was nothing I could do... I should have at least tried. I succeeded in saving Himiko, right? So who knew? Maybe if I just had not cringed away at the truth, I would have saved him.

I shake my head to clear my head from these thoughts. When I become aware of my surroundings once again, I notice that everyone is looking at me. Not Himiko, but me. Like I am the one that has lost a sibling.

I am just going to open my mouth to growl at them, but before I get the chance to do so, the chimes above the door sound once again.

"Welcome to the Honky Tonk!" Natsumi chimes in tune with the bell above the door.

Our heads turn towards the door to see who it could possibly be.

In comes a slender form with hair that reaches down past his shoulders. At the right side of the person's head are small bells attached to his hair that chime in the soft wind. A pleasant smile and warm chocolate brown eyes soften the man's face, making him look almost feminine.

Kazuki was wearing a simple tunic that sits loosely around his shoulders. Behind him is a big man with broad shoulders and a middle-aged face. I was used to seeing Kazuki's slim body drop in once in a while. He truly does like his gossip and telling others about it. To see him is not a surprise, for I have counted him in with Himiko and Shido as being one of the members for this quest.

However, the huge frame behind Kazuki is not something I have anticipated, but it is a pleasant surprise.

At least Himiko seems to think so as she rises up from her seat in surprise and exclaims, "Maguruma-san!" Her voice makes Paul take a peep over his paper to see who this Maguruma is.

Natsumi's greeting comes straight after Himiko's exclamation. "Would you like to order something?" Her voice is as happy as the first time she said it this day, when she greeted me and Ginji.

We had been the first to come here, not because we did not have any other place to hang out in, but because our landlord had been so naggy about the rent. Better get the hell out of there before he wakes up.

"Kazu-chan! Are you also going to participate in this job?" Ginji asks as he jumps all around Kazuki and somehow manges to jump up into his arms.

Which should be nearly impossible to manage seeing that Ginji is bigger and heavier than Kazuki.

Kazuki chuckles at Ginji's happiness and Maguruma smiles. It is weird to see Maguruma outside of his giant trunk. The only time I have seen him outside of his truck was when Ginji and I had found him unconscious from the poison in the stings of some giant wasps. He had not been a pretty sight and he would not have survived if not for us.

Maguruma notices me looking at him and he gives me a small nod, as if to say that he feels honored to work with me and Ginji. I give him a small nod before I look away. I do not have anything more to say to him. I have just gotten some new information to process. He may not know it, but he was a huge clue to what this mission could possibly be about. HEVN picking Maguruma must mean that we are going to transport something huge and Himiko's motorbike or my Ladybug are not enough to transport it. This can also mean that we are going to transport it quite far.

"Well Kazu-chan, are you coming with us?" Ginji, not showing any patience, asks again.

"Yes, I'm coming with you Ginji-san, as your guide," Kazuki answers, lowering Ginji down to the floor again.

I keep half an eye on what is happening and I feel alarmed when Kazuki tells Ginji that his role is to play guide in this quest, but I push the bad feeling away. HEVN knows that I would not accept any work that involved that place. The reason for it existing disgusts me, and, to be honest, it never ends well whenever we go inside that fortress. There are so many things I do not want to be reminded of that happened within those walls. I am finished with that place.

"Well then, now that everyone is here – right on time Kazuki, by the way – I will tell you what you're going to retrieve," HEVN says with a loud voice to get our attention.

"So are you going to participate, too?" Ginji asks, looking perplexed at Maguruma.

"It does look like it, doesn't it kiddo?" Maguruma answers.

This leaves Ginji even more confused.

I can really see what is going on in his head. It probably goes along the lines of 'What? Doesn't he know if he is going to participate or not?'

Maguruma should understand that Ginji never understood things like sarcasm or irony, or for that matter, expressions such as 'It's raining cats and dogs', which I said once to him and never did again.

It was a cold, rainy autumn day that should have been spent inside at a warm café drinking hot chocolate. Instead, we were on a mission and had to spy on this rich guy who went all over town meeting not only other rich businessmen, but also some men from the Yakuza.

When the rain was at its worst, I had exclaimed, 'It's raining cats and dogs.'

Ginji had let out an 'EEEHHH?' and looked out the window.

However, he did not see any cats or dogs, so he jumped out of the car before I could stop him. He had run off to look out over Shinjuku, and even though he had not found any cats or dogs, he seemed very pleased with the sight in front of him. I had walked over to him, not caring that the water made me wet straight down to the core and made me feel like a drenched cat.

We just stood there for a long time until Ginji had said, 'Isn't it beautiful, Ban-chan? It feels as if the rain could wash away all the bad.'

I had not answered him. I had nothing to say, so we just stood there for a while longer before we walked back to the car.

Well inside it, he had then said, 'Too bad we couldn't see any cats or dogs'.

I had tried to explain it to him, but he just could not grasp the idea of describing raindrops as 'cats' and 'dogs'.

He always took everything literally. As I was stuck in that memory, the seats around the table are hurriedly occupied, and it left Maguruma standing and Kazuki to take a seat with Shido at the booth next to ours.

"It's a pretty simple job, really. The client has given me all the information needed. I find it hard to believe that he's hiding any information that could be of help. If you're lucky, you will home by dinner tomorrow evening," HEVN states, looking really proud of herself.

I cannot help myself but to whistle as if impressed by her efforts. Which I am not. This is what she is supposed to know. Besides, I know how it goes with HEVN and clients that are 'not hiding' information.

"Ban-chan! Don't be mean!" Ginji pouts and I roll my eyes at him.

"Well then, once you've decided to act as grown ups, then we can continue," HEVN says, glaring at us both.

I feel an urge to backlash at her but I hold my tongue, not because I want to, but because Himiko stamps on my foot, hard.

"OW! What the heck was that for? I didn't do anything," I say with a raised voice, glaring daggers at her.

"We all know that you were thinking of it," Himiko retorts and smirks.

"Eh-hum!" HEVN says as she clears her throat. "As I was saying, you're going to retrieve an heirloom that's been stolen. The person that stole it claims that it's rightfully his. It's an heirloom that, for centuries, has been in the Tersmeden family."

"Tersmeden?" I repeat with the same strange European accent pronunciation HEVN had said it with.

"Yes. It is a Swedish noble family that is divided into several families. Its main route became extinct no more then ten years ago. The heir's brother inherited the weaponry and money as he is the only one left. Everything was at peace until a year ago when a boy named Oliver Tersmeden showed up, claiming that he is the son of the main family. The brother investigated this, knowing that if this were true, everything would pass over to Oliver. However, no trace of any Oliver could be found. It ended up with the boy not inheriting anything. But the boy swore that he would come back. Not long ago, the boy stole the weaponry and escaped to Japan where his uncle on his mother's side lives. That's way the Tersmeden household has asked for your service," HEVN explains.

"And of course, they're going to pay for the trouble," HEVN adds as an afterthought.

As I hear the last part of her speech a tingling sensation in my fingertips starts, a feeling I know well. It is the feeling when I know that soon, I will be having money in my hands. Sweet, sweet papers with a lot of zeros on them.

There cannot exist anything more beautiful than that. But I try to act cool and won't let my eagerness show. I am a professional, after all.

"How much?" I ask, trying to keep my voice calm and just mildly interested.

"Four million yen each," HEVN says and observes my reaction when I drop my professionalism and scream.

"Four million yen? Are you insane? Ginji, we're rich! We can swim in sushi for the next half a year!" I am so happy at the thought that I don't notice the sighs all around me. They have hoped that maybe I have just grown up a little, but HEVN knows me better than that.

After all, she too likes money.

"Yep, four million and as usual I'll be taking a fee of 30 % from your payment," HEVN breaks in when I am having my fit of absolute happiness.

She punctures my bubble in the most painful way possible.

"30%! You can't be serious!" I and Ginji burst out at the same time, staring daggers at her.

"It's my normal fee," HEVN says and looks insulted over the fact that we are trying to sneak away with the whole payment once again.

"But Monkey Trainer has a fee of 20%!" I wail loudly. This is my favorite argument, or rather, it is my only one.

"That's right, HEVN-san's no fair!" Ginji wails and he looks at HEVN with the absolute cutest eyes the world has ever seen, or at least the most watery.

HEVN does not seem to give in to this petty argument, but Natsumi breaks in before she can say a defiant 'no'.

"Please, HEVN-san. Just this once, they're off on the wrong foot with their rental owner," Natsumi says, putting her hands together in a begging gesture.

HEVN seems a bit put off by this. It is generally known that those two are friends despite the age difference. To say 'no' to Natsumi is obviously not the same thing as saying 'no' to us. HEVN hesitates before her eyes get thinner and look more like springs. She then turns to us.

Damn, has she noticed me taking the victory in beforehand? After all, I have been sitting with hands clutched together in a hopeful or almost begging way with my eyes locked onto her. I am hoping that she would think that I look cute. Girls like cute things.

At least, that is what I've heard. However, HEVN doesn't seem to like cute things.

"Fine, you can take 5 % extra from my payment," Himiko said, sighing loudly, which makes us all turn our heads towards her.

Is she serious? Is she really going to do that for us? Judging by the stubborn look on Himiko's face, I knew that she is not kidding. I turn my head towards HEVN. After all, she is the one to decide. By the looks of it, it seems like she is having an inner fight with herself and she is losing it.

"Fine, 25% for the Get Backers and Himiko doesn't need to lose any of her profit," HEVN says, looking like she suffers from utter defeat.

"Sounds good. I guess we'll take it," I answer with a pleased smirk covering my face.

This day is just getting better.

"Well then, perfect," HEVN says and makes a gesture as she is about to stand up. However, before she can, Himiko's voice is heard.

"Haven't you forgotten to tell us something, Mediator?" Himiko asks, puting a heavy tone on the last word.

Her voice is a bit chilly or maybe even mocking. The two of them have never really gotten along. I don't understand why, though. They can both be so childish and overconfident sometimes.

"Oh, that's right. Kazuki will be taking part as your guide because it's to the Infinity Fortress we're going," HEVN answers. With a slap to her forehead, she then adds, "Silly me."

"Wait a minute! You can't be serious about once again dragging us back into that place!" I stand up and scream at her, not caring about manners and shit.

NO money in the world is worth this.

"But I'm serious and you better stick up to your part. Remember that you've already agreed," HEVN answers swiftly. It is obvious that she had prepared for this fight and I realize that she had not really forgotten to mention where the job will be taking place. She had intentionally left it out. Bitch.

"Hell with the terms! I'm leaving," I answer her and in a weary, gymnastic way, jumps out from the seat and walks out the door. No one even gets their chance to open their mouth, but I notice that Paul has now lowered his paper, looking intensely at us.

The door closes behind me and I breathe in the warm spring air.

"BAN! Wait up!" Ginji calls after me, which makes me stop dead in my tracks.

Not because he asks me to stop but because he said 'Ban'. He almost never does that. It has always been 'Ban-chan'. He calls me 'Ban' only when he is deadpan serious. He does not give me much of a choice when he is serious.

Most of the time, he lets me make the decisions, having gotten tired of it ever since he, as an emperor, had been forced to make hard decisions about other people's lives. No matter what he did, people kept dying around him. I still do not understand how he could have put up with that kind of pressure when he was just fourteen. At that age, I myself had been running wild as a snatcher. Not caring about principles or other people, but only about myself and my own fucking well-being.

I hear his footsteps as he draws closer. I have gotten quite far away from the Honky Tonk before Ginji calls out to me. There are no prying eyes that can watch us on this empty street in the suburbs of Shinjuku. As he comes up to me, he said my name again.

"Ban."

I do not know what to say. He already knows what I think of all this, but I also know what he is probably thinking and I know that he wants to get back to that place. Not for his own sake, but for mine. During all those times that we had gone inside that fortress, Ginji had been forced to meet his past to deal with the many deaths that he had caused.

Even though it had hurt him, it had also helped Ginji heal. I have seen it myself how he has grown to be a truly strong person. He is stronger then me in so many ways that it hurt. His naive way of seeing life is what has taken us here. Without him, I would be lost. None of this would exist if not for Ginji.

"Ban, I don't know how I know but I think that this job really matters. I have a feeling that we got to help this boy, he needs to know something that you need to know, too," Ginji says.

"Know what? What do I need to know?", I ask irritated, not at Ginji for saying that I in some kind of way need help. Neither am I insulted that he tells me that I need to know something, even though I know so much more than him and that I understand so many things that he does not.

I was mad because I know that I need to know, too.

"That you're not the devil," Ginji answers me even though he knows that he does not need to.

Or maybe he does know that he needs to say it for me, that I am wrong. Parts of me want to just accept those words and roll up inside the sweetness of them, but I know that they are lies. I am the devil and the darker side of the Get Backers duo.

I am probably the representative of the whole darker side of the human race, while Ginji is the brighter and happier one. I do not mind, the human race needs god as much as it needs the devil. Without the devil, there would be no greater happiness. Without losers, there could be no winners. Ginji can do the most amazing things with his charisma and light, but sometimes, light is too late and the only thing that can get them to walk the right path again is to show them the road of misery.

The devil can also give people the most pleasant gifts. My Evil Eye is proof of that. It can give the most terrible nightmares anyone can imagine – a person's personal hell, to say the least, since I can modify it for that person alone, to alter his fears and desires. However, it can also give the most pleasant dreams.

"You aren't like that, Ban," Ginji whispers to me as he looks at me with THOSE eyes.

The eyes that see things for what they truly are. But he is wrong this time. He has to be.

"Whatever," I say after a long pause. I know that he will not give up pursuing me and deep down I want to prove to myself that even the devil can step into the light.

I turn around and start to walk back to the Honky Tonk. Ginji's face eases up into a smile and he laughs happily as he slings an arm around my neck, letting me drag him back to the Honky Tonk. That damn idiot.

I smirk as I drag out a cigarette with my free hand, thinking that I am going to smoke a hell of a lot on this mission. I also note that I will have to pick up another package of cigarettes at our apartment. This one is almost empty.

Author's Notes: I told you that I would see you later, didn't I? XD So what do ya think? Is it good? I'm writing it in the first-person perspective (as you've noticed), which is highly unusal and risky if you ask me. It's a bigger risk to screw up if you do, but I'm taking that risk. If you did like it, please review. If you did not like it, please review. If you don't think anything yet, please stick around till the next chapter and see what you think then!