Darker Than Black

Here I Am: Chapter Three

Misaki gulped from the intense, seductive calm energy he gave off, as he sat gazing at her. Although he hinted that he would be here again, she didn't understand why so soon. Since he was behaving unlike a contractor, it was certain that he had been hit with a Cupid Contractor's arrow and eventually his feelings would subside. She blamed it on the full moon that was covered by a false sky. How much she would love to gaze upon it with him. However, in that case, contractors wouldn't exist and she may have never met him.

Regardless of what his intensions were, her heart was happy he had called upon her again.

"Better?" he asked.

"A little."

Standing up, he limped over and stood before her with the light shining behind him, making him appear as a silhouette while taking a hold of her and pulling her close.

"How about now?"

"You're getting there."

"Remember what I said at the party?"

"How it was not romantic enough?"

He leaned in, pressed his lips against hers, and drew her in even closer.

"The only way you'll be able to unmask me, is if you kiss me," he whispered, while leaving soft trails of kisses on her neck.

Misaki withdrew her left hand from his neck, grabbed his mask from the bottom corner to rip and throw it across the room. It shattered on the wall before crumbling to the floor, as she found his lips.

Due to the dimness, she could only make out outlines of his features that were not detailed enough to affirm his identity.

His height, build, and hair are very similar to Li's, she thought to herself. Not to mention, he smells like Li.

Having an idea, Misaki guided him towards her balcony door, and pressed him against the wall. Making sure he was distracted with every kiss she gave, she reached out her left hand to open her blinds. However, he took a hold of it and pinned it to her side.

They kissed for a few more minutes before there was a knock on Misaki's front door.

Damn it, Misaki thought. It better not be…

"Misaki, open up. The key is still missing. Let me in! I brought some movies to help you take your mind off masquerade man."

Hei began to pull away from her to look at the door.

"Just ignore her," she beseeched, yanking him back into her embrace and continuing to kiss him. "Don't say… a word so… she thinks… I'm still out… working."

Hei agreed by wrapping his hands around her waist and pulling her against him.

"Misaki?" yelled Kanami again.

Misaki could hear her phone ring, knowing it was Kanami calling from the ring tone and ignored it.

"Ootsuka found out something."

Silence filled the hallway as Kanami waited for her to answer. Whatever they found out, it wouldn't be as important as her situation. More than likely, she was probably lying to let her in. She was more annoying than the Big Bad Wolf from the children's book.

"Misaki?"

Hei pulled slightly away from Misaki. "Your friend won't give up, will she?"

"When it's about men, she'll keep calling, sit out at my door till I get home, or even break into my apartment."

"It appears we'll have to continue this elsewhere."

"How about your place?"

"I have a nosy cat." Misaki thought about the one hanging around Li with the band-aid on its nose. "How about the shrine you saw me at tomorrow at this time."

"You want to do it at the shrine?"

"Only if you want to." Misaki gave him a concerned face as he chuckled before saying, "I have to make some preparations. We'll meet there so we're not interrupted."

"I can't wait till tomorrow; take me to your place, now. You can blindfold me."

"Misaki, I know you're in there! I heard your phone! Open up!" yelled Kanami.

Misaki could hear her press up against the door, slide down to sit against it, and began singing.

"Aishte mo ii kai? Yureru yoru ni

"Aru ga mama de ii yo motto fukaku

"Kuruoshii kurai ni nareta kuchibiru

"Ga tokeau hodo ni

"Boku wa… kimi no… vanilla…"

Misaki shook her head at her friend's choice of song.

Hei reached into his back pocket to pull out his trench coat and wrapped it around Misaki.

"It's cold outside," he said.

"You'll keep me warm," she replied, visualizing him holding her in his arms.

Her face was close to his chest while he soared through the city night, rooftop to rooftop with his wire, as his breath against her neck kept her warm. She had dreamt about what it would be like and now she was going to get her chance.

"Where's your car parked?"

"In the garage," she muttered, still slightly in dreamland and then looked at him baffled to say, "Wait… What? My car?"

"I said I needed to make a few preparations. If you can't wait, we'll have to take your car."

"Huh?" Misaki questioned. Drive to his place? Not spend a romantic night swinging in the air?

"Is there a problem?"

"Eh…ah… no. I mean…"

"I would take you by train," he commented, reaching into his pocket and pulling out a black piece of cloth, "but I can't let you know where we're going."

"You've come prepared," Misaki moaned, looking at it upset.

"I didn't know how dark your apartment would be."

"Is that how you normally travel around the city?" Misaki inquired.

She visualized him entering the subway in his dark Reaper clothes and white mask, scaring the other passengers off the train before it took off. The unlucky ones sat cowering in fear under their briefcases, purses or chairs. Women hid behind their men while the men peed themselves, waiting impatiently and fearfully to get off at the next station.

As if he seemed to know what she was thinking, he commented with, "I'm not the Black Reaper all the time. Plus, where I want to take you is a half an hour drive from here."

Misaki frowned.

"What, not romantic enough?" he smirked.

"Not really," Misaki mumbled, as he tied the black cloth gently around to cover her eyes. "Is that all right? Is it too tight?"

"No. It's fine."

Hei lifted her up and held her in his arms as he went for her balcony. Misaki could hear him pull out his wire and tossed it to wrap around something. She wrapped her arms tight around his neck, while he placed his free arm around her bottom, and held her close to him.

"Don't let go of me," he advised.

"I don't plan to."

Even though she was blindfolded, Misaki felt the need to close her eyes, as she felt him jump off her balcony and seconds later, she found him swinging her through the air. Her hair and his jacket were flapping in the wind, and then she felt him land on what she believed was the next roof over since it felt like they were taken higher.

"You forgot my keys," she mentioned. "They're back at my apartment in my purse."

"Don't need them."

"Huh?"

What exactly did he have planned? She knew they couldn't go out the front door because of Kanami, but he could have taken her to the garage.

Realizing he wasn't heading to her car, she wondered if he had changed his mind. If so, then she was upset since she wanted something more romantic. Screaming in her head for being taken somewhere closer, she realized she would not be able to find out where he lived.

She hoped it wasn't the cheap motel down the street and reminded to hit herself later for being an idiot.

Generally afraid of ski lift rides, or any other cable ride, she was amazed at how calm she remained flying over to the next rooftop. Every bit was exactly as she pictured it and wondered if this was a dream. He landed gently on the rooftop to where it felt like they were flying through the heavens from cloud to cloud. Usually she'd be terrified; however, she felt as if she was setting herself free from all the trouble in her life.

It didn't last long as he seemed to stop and removed the blindfold. He directed Misaki over to a ledge, stood behind to embrace her and observe the night city. He motioned for her to step on top of the ledge in which she complied, almost losing her balance if Hei hadn't caught her and held her tightly, as she closed her eyes.

"You're missing a lovely view," he commented.

"I'd rather not look."

"Is the Chief of Police afraid of heights?"

"No. Not heights. It's the fall."

"I will not let that happen," he said, tightening his grip.

With those words, Misaki slowly opened her eyes to take in the marvelous city, recognizing the grocery store and apartment building across the street, and realizing she was on her building's rooftop.

"Is this more of what you envisioned?" he whispered in her ear and then kissed her neck.

"Huh? What? You mean… up here?"

"Not romantic enough?"

"Well, it's…"

Misaki shivered from the cool night air. Hei chuckled, rubbing her arms to warm her. It appeared the Black Reaper had a sense of humor.

"Relax and enjoy the view," he whispered into her ear, tickling it with his breath.

After gazing out at the city's flickering and motioning lights, she tried to look back towards him, but he kept her from doing so.

"Can't I see your face?" she asked.

"For your safety, it's better not knowing."

"My safety?"

"They'll kill you if you find out."

"It hurts not knowing."

"Deep in your heart, you know, don't you?" he said, as he pressed a light kiss to her neck.

He turned her around quickly and pressed his lips against hers so she could only see his midnight blues eyes she had already had the privilege of gazing upon.

Minutes later, he placed the blindfold back on, held her tightly with his left arm and jumped off the side of the building. Misaki's heart seemed to stop, as if it had been left back on the roof, making her want to scream, but held it back, as they descended towards the street. She believed if she had not held her breath, she might have lost her dinner. When they drew closer, her dark knight threw out his wire to connect it to a telephone pole, slowing down their decent before they effortlessly touched the concrete. Her heart, seeming as though it had caught up, began to beat again. He picked her up in his arms and headed to his right.

Minutes later, he opened a door and settled her down in the right side of a car, making her wonder why he place her in the driver's seat, but noticed there wasn't a steering wheel or gas pedal. Within seconds, the other side opened and closed, and then the engine fired up. Misaki realized she was in her Porsche.

"When did you grab my keys?"

"I don't need them," he reminded her, while Misaki frowned, believing he must have used his power to start it.

Gackt's White Lovers started to play in the background from Misaki's iPod synced to her car. Misaki started thinking about the party and remembered he had cosplayed him. Gackt was the one musician that could take all her troubles and worries away to relax at night with the sound of his voice and smooth melodies. Did he somehow know she liked the artist, and how?

While his attention was on the road, she thought it would be a perfect opportunity to remove the blindfold. Her left hand reached to grab the edge of the blindfold, and as she began to lift it up slightly, he had grabbed her wrist.

"No peeking," he warned.

Damn! she thought, but quickly lifted up her right hand and removed it. She turned her head slightly to get a good look at his face but was startled to see he had on his mask.

"Come on!" she hollered, as he pulled over the car. Did he keep that in his pocket somehow too? "If you were going to blindfold me, why wear the mask?"

"I knew you'd peek and like I had said, you can't see where we're heading. I'd appreciate it if you keep the blindfold on, or I'll take you back to your place."

Not wanting to, Misaki slid back on the blindfold. Hei pulled out and headed on.

A half hour later, her Porsche came to a stop, making her believe they had reached his apartment. The Black Reaper exited the vehicle and opened the passenger side to help Misaki out. Wanting to avoid the front door; he took her in his arms and recoiled up to a balcony. She could hear a window open and then he carried her into a room.

All she could take in was a hint of what he had had for dinner.

Wasting no time, she removed his shirt, as he did with hers, and then he slowly led her toward a futon while they kissed. Once they reached it, he sat her in the middle of it and broke away from her. He removed the blindfold for her to see his apartment was as dark as hers and still couldn't make out more than the outlines of his figure.

He leaned over her to kiss her, but she held her hand up at his bare chest.

"Wait. I demand you tell me who you are."

"What's in an identity?"

She trailed her fingers along his chest and abs. "Are you Li?" she inquired, because that was who her heart was telling her he was. Not to mention, dinner.

"For tonight, if you would like me to be, then I could." He softly kissed her neck and down her chest while removing her bra.

Simultaneously, she unbuttoned his pants while he worked his way back to her lips. The more Misaki thought about it, even if he was Li, this was not Li who was going to make love to her. He was never this bold and was too sweet suggesting the things he was doing to her. This man was not the Black Reaper either. He was not harsh or abusive with her, and he did his best to make sure she was comfortable and willing.

"Hei," she said, breathlessly. Feeling a smile form on his lips, she melted into him as he continued to kiss her passionately.

This moment with Hei was real.

He laid her on her back with his bare skin on top of hers, having chills run up her spine. They continued kissing each other with Misaki wrapping her arms around his back. Slowly, he drew his hip towards hers, and then made her grown from delight.

No matter what consequence this would bring in the morning, she was not going to have any regrets.

Xxx

An hour later, they lay naked in the dark under sheets.

"So what happens now?" Misaki asked, laying her head on his chest as he ran his fingers through her hair.

"I don't know."

"Will there be a second chance?"

"Just the one."

"So you're going to play on my curiosity?"

"Only if it's working?"

"It's not."

Hei smirked, moved on top of her to pin her to the bed. "It's not, huh? Hmm… I think I want to make you work for it."

Misaki smiled.

Xxx

The next morning, Misaki awoke to her phone ringing. She groggily tried adjusting her eyes to the light and noticed it on the nightstand.

She picked up the obnoxious object, flipped it open while placing it to her left ear, and mumbled, "Hello?"

"Good afternoon, Misaki," said her friend on the other end.

"Afternoon?" she exclaimed, waking her up.

"Did you have a good night last night?"

"Good night?"

"I came over and you wouldn't open up."

"You did? " Misaki questioned. "I must have falling asleep and couldn't hear you."

"Or you went out with that Hizumi guy."

"I told you, I'm not interested in him."

"What if I told you, I found out who he is?"

"Not interested," Misaki insisted, knowing she was lying. Besides, if she couldn't find out BK-201's identity, there was no way Kanami could.

"He's very good looking."

"Then you go ask him out."

"I will."

"Good. Now I'm running late. I'll talk to you later."

"Wait, I'm calling about some contractor activity. Saitou and Kouno are waiting in Shinjuku. I'll text you the address."

"Thanks," replied Misaki, and then hung up the phone, sighing. "Never a break.

She thought about the last three days.

After BK-201 had jumped off the roof from Ootsuka's party, Misaki immediately searched her body and found a microchip he had planted on her. To her luck, it gave out a small signal she was able to track the next day, however, it led her straight to a McDoness restaurant.

Last night, she returned home frustrated and tired, falling asleep in minutes. Not surprisingly, she ended up having a second dream thanks to her unusual encounter with him showing up in her apartment. After allowing her to remove the masquerade mask, he took her out at night to his place where they spent a romantic night.

Damn him for being so charming, she thought.

Her future dreams were sure to include him in them. If only she could have precognitive dreams to help give a clue to his identity. However, she wasn't too sure if she could arrest him now.

After dressing in her blue suit, Misaki headed towards her kitchen to get something to eat. Stepping into it, she walked over to the cabinet next to her fridge and noticed pieces of a white and black masquerade mask lying on the floor.

"IT WAS REAL!" she exclaimed, as she bent down, picking up a half portion of the mask. "But how… Did he use M.E. on me?

"Why did he even come here? Did he plant another chip on me?"

She checked up and down her body to find nothing. She would have to have her apartment searched. Was this dream fabricated from M.E. to make her think that he had slept with her so she would stop pursuing him?

Misaki's phone rang. She picked it up to see Saitou was calling her.

"I'm on my way," she answered quickly, and hung up on him before he could get a word out.

xxx

In the late evening, Misaki returned home from another tiring day of work. As she exited the elevator and headed for her apartment a couple doors down, she was surprised to see Li-kun sitting while leaning against her door with a few bags of groceries. He appeared to be sleeping.

"Li-kun?" she whispered, standing in front of him. He didn't hear her, so she reached down and nudged him on the shoulder. "Li-kun."

Li slowly opened his eyes.

"Ah, Misaki," he groggily acknowledged, rising up to greet her. "Hello."

"What are you doing here?"

"You didn't make it for lunch."

"Lunch? We set up a time to meet?"

"Yesterday. I'm sure you've just been so busy and forgot."

"Oh… that's right, at… the restaurant…."

"No. My place."

His place?

"I didn't have your number, so I decided to wait. Do you have time for dinner instead?"

"Sounds delicious," she smiled. Li returned it. "Wait a minute, it's almost ten and you've been waiting here since noon?"

"Actually, it was for two. I must have fallen asleep while waiting for you. I'm more tired than I realized."

"Working a lot?"

"Yes. Full time currently while attending school full time."

"That must be rough."

"It is. But it's temporary and I only have one more week of this job."

"That's good." Then it dawned on her. She didn't ever remember telling Li where she lived. "Ummm… Li-kun… How do you know I live here?"

"You gave me the address yesterday."

"I did?" Damn it, BK-201. You had to erase my memory of spending time with Li too. Consider your jealous ass caught. "I'm sorry, Li-kun." Misaki went to open her door. "Please do come in."

Li picked up his six bags of groceries and entered her apartment with a slight limp.

"Li-kun, you hurt yourself?"

"Don't you remember, I tripped on a cat yesterday?"

My whole day yesterday was a lie. Misaki thought. I must have found out something important.

She wasn't sure what was fabricated and what was real. She remembered pulling the mask off BK-201 and throwing it across her room to hear it shatter and finding it on the kitchen floor confirmed it. Unless, for some crazy reason, he planted it there and wanted her to think that. Otherwise, wouldn't he have cleaned up the mess?

She couldn't remember her day with Li-kun and her dream with BK-201 was hazy, but she did recall that the Black Reaper was also limping last night. She had had her suspicions about Li since she had caught him buying a bra.

Could Li really be BK-201?

Though if he would go through all the trouble in wiping her memory, why was he sitting in front of her apartment door reminding her of the events that had happened?

Nothing was making any sense.

The only thing she wished for, if she did spend a night with BK-201, would be having his well-toned naked body pressed up against hers. She wondered how long he had stayed with her. Did he take her home as soon as she fell asleep and then leave her alone, or did he stay with her all night and left just as the sun rose?

Whether Li was BK-201 or not, she was certain she would not get a chance to have another night with Hei. For now, having dinner with Li would be a start to finding out the truth and seeing how far she could take this relationship.

"Shouldn't you be resting that foot instead of standing in the kitchen?"

"It's much better now," Li assured, smiling, as he set the groceries on her kitchen counter and began removing them. "Besides, I couldn't miss our date."

"Date?" What exactly went on yesterday?

He smiled and stood before her.

"Li…kun…?"

"Thank you, Misaki."

"Ehh… For what?"

"For helping me yesterday. You went out of your way and didn't have to. Even if you have forgotten because you feel it's your duty as a police officer, I will never forget."

"Li?"

Li started pulling out pots and pans to start cooking. They spent a couple hours eating and afterward, Li went to start the dishes. Yawning, he turned on the water to fill up her sink.

Misaki came over to turn it off. "These can wait till morning. You should get some rest."

"Nonsense. I couldn't leave all these dishes for you to take care of."

Misaki smirked, as Li looked at her baffled. "Who said I was going to clean them." He continued to look at her clueless. "You can clean them in the morning."

"Eh?"

"You can crash here tonight. You're so tired, I'm afraid you'll fall asleep on the train and sleep there all night."

"I don't want to be a burden."

"Look at it as a thank you for your thank you," she smiled.

He returned it.

Hei shouldn't have been surprised, but the Syndicate did have eyes everywhere. After the amazing night he shared with Misaki, he couldn't erase her memory, hoping he could have several more nights with her. Although, it's not the same since he wasn't expecting to stay at her place so soon.

He wasn't hiding the truth from her; he was hiding her from the truth. Performing an act to protect her against the syndicate, as he hoped she would return the favor and keep him off the radars too. After all, she was an extremely talented detective; he knew she could see through his act at the park.

As always, the Syndicate could see through his plans and take away every ounce of having a real relationship from him.

There was only one good turn of events. Now he could slowly win his way to her heart without the heartless Black Reaper, or the timid Li-kun, but himself who loved his sister. After she died, he felt he had lost apart of him, but Misaki had filled it.

He wished he could be a genie and grant a third wish for her. To be together when it was impossible. Still, he wasn't one to give up and admit defeat. He would find a way.

Not caring what she or his employers thought, he walked over to embrace her.

"Li-kun?"

A minute later, he pulled slightly away to whisper, "Thank you," and then kissed her on the lips, as Misaki's eyes widened at his boldness. However, as she seemed to sense familiarity in his touch and gave into it, he wondered if he had revealed his identity.

So much for moving slowly, he thought.

XXX

The End.

AN: Song Kanami was singing: Gackt – Vanilla – As far as a translation, you can head over to MoonStruck . Let's just say… it's appropriate for what Hei and Misaki were going to do. ;)

Someone make me an AMV now.

Hope everyone enjoyed these last two chapters as much as the first. Please let me know what you thought.

Sorry it took so long to get this chapter out, it has been written for awhile, but my beta has been extremely busy.

It has also come to my attention by him that I have Misaki lose her memory too much. I guess I like to try to find as many ways as I can to wipe it on her. I'm so mean. I did have another idea for an ending to this, but I didn't like it as much. If you're interested, I may post it to my Live Journal. It's very short, not quite complete, and was not looked over by him, but it didn't involve her losing her memory.

EDIT: I went ahead and posted it to my journal. A link can be found on my profile page soon.