Death Note Alternate Reality- Welsh Edition
Chapter 1- The Beginning of an Era
The Shinigami Realm, unknown time
The Shinigami Realm. A desolate wasteland, strewn with giant rib-cages of some kind of great creature which clearly didn't exist at the current time and the skulls of smaller creatures that seemed equally absent from the current scene. Any landscape free of the pale grey bones was covered in dust that was merely a darker shade of grey. The sky, or lack thereof, seemed to be the exact same hue as the rest of the world, and if it wasn't for the occasional landmark, one would not be stupid for assuming that the sky and ground met together and wrapped round the area, like a great bubble of colourlessness.
The inhabitants of this world were not anything like the typical life on Earth. The Shinigami were a bizarre species indeed, the kind of organism that, although similar in behaviour and complexity of thought, were almost certainly paraphyletic. Some, like the Shinigami Ryuk, were almost human-like, except with grotesque, shark-like teeth and a hunched gait that clearly indicated a different spinal structure. Another Shinigami, Midora, was far more reptilian in morphology, yet stood upright like a human. Others defied even comparison with the creatures humans were familiar with, such as the many-eyed Calikarcha.
Yet, despite their morphological diversity, there was one thing in common with the Shinigami: all were dissatisfied. Some were too proud to admit it, others simply didn't care, but some knew full well they were, and hated every moment of their life. Such a Shinigami was Ryuk.
Staring out into the blank space that his world mostly consisted of, Ryuk sighed to himself, then resumed his current task- writing down a set of human's names he had memorised within some kind of notebook. Waiting a short while, Ryuk made a guttural, raspy noise that seemed to indicate satisfaction.
"Ah... yet I'm still not full..." Ryuk muttered to himself.
A couple of Shinigami were watching Ryuk in fascination, looking on at the Shinigami as if there was something terribly wrong with him, despite them looking just as wrong in entirely different ways.
"Why does that guy keep writing names in his Death Note? Surely he's got more than enough years left for now..." a Shinigami with a cattle skull for a head named Gook remarked.
"Beats me." a vaguely humanoid Shinigami with a scythe named Deridovely replied, "He seems to get a strange kick out of seeing humans die. At least he'll never let himself die. Can't wait to see Sidoh's face when he finds out that Ryuk's taken his death note..."
"How long has Sidoh got left?" Gook asked.
"I don't know, something like ninety-four million units?" Deridovely replied, "...about seven cycles of the Human World around their star."
"...ha. Well, as long as the notebook doesn't get lost." Gook mumbled, "...Ryuk likes a joke, but if it gets out of hand, Sidoh could end up dead..."
"Something tells me Ryuk may want that to happen..." Deridovely mused, and then called to the Shinigami in question, "...hey, Ryuk, why don't you come over and play some skull-scree with us?"
The tall, emaciated-looking abomination turned around, and shook his head, "No thanks. I got bored of that crap ages ago. I might go sight-seeing..."
"Seeing how hard you work, you'll have all the time in the world to go sight-seeing." Gook pointed out, "Just one game... come on, Ryuk. You should be a little more sociable..."
"No thanks." Ryuk smirked, taking out a second notebook of his which had the title 'Death Note', "I've been occupying myself in a different way. I've learnt how to write words other than names in English, and have filled Sidoh's notebook with stupid English rules. Pretty crazy, huh?"
"Um... I guess..." Gook unsurely replied.
"Anyway, I'm going to take a walk and look over the human world..." Ryuk said, turning dramatically and walking in an overly clumsy manner, before tripping up in a telegraphed and obviously deliberate manner, "Oops!"
The notebook flew from his hands, and went quite the distance before dropping into a large hole in front of Ryuk. Both Gook and Deridovely looked at Ryuk in a form of disapproving horror.
"Ryuk... did you just..." Gook began to ask.
Ryuk put on a false act of panic, "Oh no! Whatever shall I do? That was Sidoh's notebook! I need to retrieve it for him before a human picks it up! Please don't tell Sidoh! I'll be right back!"
Deridovely grinned wryly, "Don't worry, Ryuk. We won't tell. Now, hurry up and get it back!
Ryuk picked himself up, and wings sprouted from his back. He ran up a little, before taking to the air, first flying upwards, and once he was directly above the hole he had dropped his 'procured' notebook into, he dive-bombed in a manner closely resembling a hungry gannet.
Ffriddoedd site, Bangor, Wales, the Human Realm, midnight, November 4th 2012
Ffriddoedd site, a small university-owned area at the top of a hill in Upper Bangor, North Wales. The area was little more than a set of buildings devoted to student flats, all given ridiculous names in the Welsh language, a language which confused even Shinigami due to its odd use of the Roman alphabet.
It was currently late autumn, and the sky was pitch black, with not even a moon to light it up. There were, however, countless artificial lights that lined the paths, and several sources of light coming from the windows of the buildings where restless students were staying up, either partying or simply relaxing, but unable to sleep.
One student which fit the latter category was a young man by the name of Matthew James Dave, a resident of the 'Enlli' building. He was simply sitting at his computer, typing away at a meaningless comment on a meaningless YouTube video, passing the time until his mind finally gave up and forced his insomniac body to sleep.
However, his stomach was not willing to let that happen, and was consistently gurgling, as if to remind him that he couldn't sleep on an empty stomach. So the scruffily dressed, ready-for-bed man did anything other than go to bed, but instead got up from his chair, shut his computer down, picked up his key-card and wore it round his neck, put on his coat, and put a large pair of headphones on his head. Slipping on some shoes, he walked out of his room, feeling his pockets for money.
"Damn it..." Matt mumbled to himself, "Why do I always get the munchies in the middle of the night... ugh... to late stop I go..."
Putting on his music player, Matt walked at an unnaturally fast pace given his tired nature, and, in the absence of people who could see him, began to move to his music as if dancing while he was walking down Ffriddoedd hill. Just as he got into the swing of things, however, his music player suddenly stopped playing, and he got his music player out of his pocket, and pressed a button on the top of the small, cuboidal device.
"...damn... out of power." Matt mumbled to himself, and took his headphones off, wearing them around his neck, "Oh well. Guess I'm less likely to get jumped this way."
Finally, the young man got to his local late-stop shop, and bought himself a large packet of tortilla chips, before heading back up the hill which his campus was built on. Walking back onto the Ffriddoedd site, Matt heard a small flapping noise that suddenly came to a halt, like something with paper had fallen through the air before hitting the ground. Turning towards the noise, the man walked up to the object which must have fallen.
It was a small notebook, most likely size A-five. On the front of it was a two-word title; 'Death Note'. Picking the strange book up, Matt mumbled, "What's this?"
Opening the book, Matt found more writing on the inside cover. This body of writing, however, was a little more word-rich. It read as follows:
'How to use it:
The human whose name is written in this note shall die
This note will not take effect unless the writer has the person's face in their mind when writing his/her name. Therefore, people sharing the same name will not be affected.
If the cause of death is written within 40 seconds of writing the person's name, it will happen.
If the cause of death is not specified, the person will simply die of a heart attack.
After writing the cause of death, the details of the death should be written in the next 6 minutes and 40 seconds.
The Death note will not affect those under 780 days old.
A death note will be rendered useless if the victim's name is misspelled four times.
If a death note is lost or stolen the owner will lose ownership unless it is retrieved within 490 days.'
Matt stopped and thought to himself. Was this some kind of joke? It was a pretty strange joke if it was. Not only that, but who dropped it? It sounded like it had fallen from a fair height. He looked up at the closest building. The 'Glyder' building. Whoever was there was a pretty weird person for throwing something like this on the floor. Hell, they were probably laughing at him right now for checking it out.
He picked the notebook up, and went to the nearest of the large, green waste bins which were filled with student waste. He opened up the lid of the bin, yet something... something odd stopped him. All of a sudden, curiosity struck him. What if this thing was not some prank? In that case, where did it come from? Thinking about it, Matt couldn't remember seeing any windows on the side of Glyder that was closest to the notebook being open, and even then, the windows didn't open widely enough to let someone throw a book this far, even from the top floor...
So, with that, Matt closed the waste bin's lid, and took the strange book home with him. He walked through the Ffriddoedd site, finally making it back to Enlli and going straight back to his room on floor two. Shutting his bedroom door, he thought to himself a little.
What if this thing was real? And actually killed a person who's name was written on it? An agnostic, Marine Biology and Zoology student, Matt believed that while it seemed unlikely that a caring, creator God existed in this world, that the existence of the supernatural was always a possibility. He believed that humans were subject to limitations based on their ability to perceive the world, just as a flatworm is, but to a lesser or different extent. Thus, anything that was supernatural was merely a facet of the world that limited human understanding could not grasp. He always thought that such a thing would manifest itself in the form of a four-dimensional being, or an alien which is sufficiently advanced to the point where they may well be considered 'Gods' to humans.
However, to think that a supernatural object could manifest itself in such a simple, easy-to-comprehend form jarred Matt somewhat. It challenged his world-view, and thus interested him greatly. This niggling feeling in the back of his head was enough to drive him to test it.
But who would he try it on? Who could he honestly say he wanted dead? Was there anyone in this world who truly deserved death, even in the past? His mind cycled through the infamous examples... the founder of the Ku Klux Klan, Jack the Ripper, Adolf Hitler... then it hit him. A Neo-Nazi. A famous one. One which had been all over the news. Anders Behring Breivick. Responsible for a sequential bombing and mass shooting at the Worker's Youth League. He was violent and unrepentant, and had only received a term of twenty-one years, with a minimum of ten years if he 'behaved'. No-one would miss him. His death would be nowhere near an equal 'eye' for the countless 'eyes' that he had taken, but then it hit him- if he had six minutes and forty seconds to specify the cause of death, he could make him be punished as much as he wanted.
So, Matt wrote down in Biro pen 'Anders Behring Breivick, Suicide: Comes to the horrific realisation that what he did was truly wrong, gets consumed with self hatred, and dies from blood loss by repeatedly hitting his head against his cell wall.'. As he finished writing, he began to breathe heavily. What was this feeling? Like he was satisfied, yet frightened to death? The reality that this may actually occur horrified Matt, and suddenly, he yelled, "No! No! How do I stop it? Okay, six minutes and forty seconds... something in here's gotta be about erasing this writing..."
Looking and the back inside cover for more 'rules', Matt found a blank, black cover, and began to hyperventilate, "No! No!"
Suddenly, he was interrupted by a knock on his door. Turning to the door, he stammered, "...um... hello?"
A woman's voice, who clearly had a northern accent, called from behind the door, saying, "Matt, are you okay? I'm trying to sleep... I've got a lecture at nine."
"I'm fine, Halley..." Matt mumbled, "...sorry about that... um... yeah, sorry."
After a brief silence, the sound of walking and a door shutting was heard, and Matt went back to panicking, looking at his digital alarm clock, "Huh? Twenty two past? Only two minutes left..."
Finally, Matt decided on scribbling out the name sloppily, and gasped, "...hopefully that'll fix it..."
After calming down, Matt decided to go to bed, but his mind was too occupied with thought. What if it was real? What if it really happened? And the death really occurred? No, it was totally ridiculous. If there was something able to induce death at will, it would be beyond his scope of reason. Neither he, nor any human, would be able to see it. The only way it would be able to willingly kill things with any cause is if it were simultaneously everywhere and able to manipulate every facet of three-dimensional reality. No such being would be grossly simplified to a mere notebook able to be commanded by a human in the form of writing on it. Why would it even need to understand human language? It would probably communicate non-verbally, and would absolutely not allow humans to control it...
But no matter how much he tried to rationalise the situation, the terrible guilt danced through Matt's conscious and subconscious thought, ripping away any hope of sleep. In the end, Matt lay down in his bed, and kept hoping that tomorrow would come and simply be another day...
Matt's Room, Enlli Building, Ffriddoedd site, six-fifty ante-meridian
The display of the alarm clock in Matt's room switched from '6:49' to '6:50', and with that, began to beep lightly. Almost instantly, the very much awake Matt turned off his alarm, and quickly, neglecting to put on clothes or get his breakfast, the first thing he did was turn on his computer.
Waiting for it to boot up, Matt's rate of breathing became increasingly frantic, as if his lungs were under strain from the fear. Once he logged in, he instantly opened up 'Google Chrome', and opened up a new tab.
Searching 'BBC news' into Google, Matt waited a few seconds, and looked at the home page of the website, and scrolled down to the 'most popular' section. Number three on the list was, to his horror, 'Anders Breivick commits suicide in Oslo Prison'.
Matt exhaled in shock, "...it's... it's coincidence..."
Clicking on the link for further information, the story went on further to say that Anders Breivick broke down in tears, and repeatedly hit his head on the wall, declaring 'Sorry, I'm so sorry', and collapsed before officers could restrain him and prevent fatal blood loss.
"No... no... it can't be..." Matt looked down at the still-open notebook on his desk, and read over the cause of death he had specified next to the scribbled-out name, "...he... regretted his actions and... killed himself... so..."
Matt grabbed the Death Note, and closed it quickly. He was a murderer. He had killed a man. Not only that, but he tortured him before death, giving him a conscience and making him suffer enough to commit suicide. This was beyond wrong... what he had done was evil.
Matt quickly threw on some clothes, and took the Death Note outside. He marched towards the bins, and said, "Goodbye forever..."
However, something stopped him, and he shuddered as a particularly horrific thought came to him. This thing was clearly beyond science. Beyond three-dimensional space itself. Burning it would probably not do anything. Neither would ripping out the pages. And throwing it away, like he was going to do just then, was certainly a bad idea. Anyone could get their hands on it. No, the only way he could help with this notebook is to make sure that the wrong people didn't get hold of it. That meant keeping its existence a secret, and never using it again.
Matt turned around, and walked back into the Enlli building, and made himself some breakfast, feverishly hiding the deadly book in the back of his clothing wardrobe. Today was a lecture on the organismal diversity of Molluscs, and he knew that his friends would just ask him where he had been if he didn't attend...
Floor two kitchen, Enlli building, Ffriddoedd site, five-twenty post-meridian
Walking into his flat, Matt walked into the shared kitchen, too afraid to enter his room. He quickly made himself some Bolognese, and ate his tea in a rushed, unnatural manner. He had managed to cook his tea at a time when nobody else seemed to eat, and seemed relieved that he didn't have to talk to anyone today. He had used the excuse that he wanted to listen to the lectures earlier in the day, but it would be harder to avoid facing people in his own flat.
After finishing his meal, he finally brought himself to go back into his room, rushing to the kitchen door to open it, however, a well-built, somewhat handsome man entered the kitchen as he did, and said, "Hey, Matt. How's things?"
Matt was tripping over words, as he was already under strain by the prospect of being in the same room as a supernatural force of controllable death, and the added pressure of keeping up appearances was too much to handle, "I'm fine, thanks, Dan... I'm gonna go to my room, I got studies to do, you know what I'm saying?"
"Oh... okay. See you later..." Dan replied, and got to opening a ready meal, leaving Matt to his own thoughts.
Matt scrambled to his room, and sat down at his desk, holding his head in his hands and whimpering a little, "...I'm a murderer... a murderer..."
Another voice interrupted his soliloquy, however, saying, "Hey, don't feel so guilty. Death comes for all humans, and making it come quicker is really no big deal."
Matt turned to the source of the voice quickly, and upon seeing the monstrous creature that was now standing over him, he froze in terror, trembling a little as he did.
"...what's the matter? If you're so frightened and filled with guilt, why did you write the name in the first place?" the hideous creature asked, "Oh, by the way, if you'd have crossed the name out with two ruled lines, that would negate the death of the human you killed..."
It took a while for Matt to come to forming full words, but when he did, he simply asked, "What are you?", shivering the whole time.
"I am a Shinigami. My name is Ryuk." the creature answered matter-of-factly, "That Death Note belonged to me. And if I were you, I'd start using it more than just that once. Because I could have just picked that notebook up and taken it back to my home if you hadn't wrote that first name down. But because of that, I now have to stay down here, with you. That means that you'd better make it worth my time..."
"...that sounds like a threat." Matt said, with more than a hint of apprehension in his voice.
"...well, that's because it is." Ryuk stated, "You'd better give me a good reason to stay here, because otherwise, I'll simply write your name in my Death Note... that's right, I have two. It's part of a code between us two..."
"A code?" Matt asked, "What the hell are you talking about?"
"That notebook is used by our kind to extend our own lives. We have to use it to continue existing." Ryuk explained, "All of us have to kill humans to take their lifespans for ourselves. But when we drop our Death Note into the human world, a human such as yourself can use the Death Note. If that happens, then the ownership is transferred to that human, and the original owner, in this case, myself, has to follow that human around until that human dies. Part of this arrangement also includes that I have to write your name in my Death Note when your time to die comes."
Matt gulped, "And... and that time can be any time you want, right?"
Ryuk's vicious-looking smile widened, "That's right. So... you'd best have a good idea of what you're going to do with this Death Note... and if you don't, then you could always give it away and forfeit ownership, but if you do that, then I'll have no choice but to erase your memories of ever knowing about the Death Note's existence."
Matt briefly considered this option, but then remembered that one of the reasons he hadn't thrown it away was fearing that it may fall into the wrong hands. Feeling a little more confident, he stood up to Ryuk, still dwarfed by about two feet.
"...can't I just destroy it or something?" Matt asked, "I wouldn't want this thing to fall into the wrong hands..."
Ryuk smirked, "...go on. Try it... but I will simply kill you before you do that. Do you want to know why I dropped this Death Note down here?"
Matt quivered, "Do I want to know?"
"I did it because I was bored..." Ryuk answered the question he proposed, ignoring Matt, "...I wanted to come across a human who would keep using the Death Note, and keep me entertained... while you can burn up the Death Note, I'm not going to forgive you for ruining my chance of fun. Do you understand? I will kill you if you simply destroy your notebook. By all means, give it away, but if you destroy it, I will not hesitate to take away your ample lifespan and add it to my own."
Matt looked into the fish-like eyes of the monster. There was neither mercy nor hatred in his eyes, merely a kind of bizarre pleasure as he watched Matt break. Finally, he said, "...well... seeing as I killed Anders Breivick, a truly evil man... I guess that the only way I can keep you happy and still do good for this world is if I use this thing to kill murderers. That way I'll be saving more lives than I am taking, right? That's more or less justified, isn't it?"
Ryuk chuckled with a grating wheeze, "...justified? What do I care? Death is a meal to me. Do what you want, I don't care. As long as you're not just going to hide it away and be a 'responsible human'. That's not fun at all... and that's the only reason I'm here."
"...you're a sick, twisted bastard, but, you know what, you're not a human." Matt replied, becoming a little more comfortable with Ryuk's presence, "All animals have their own degrees of what they consider right and wrong, and you Shinigami are probably the same. You operate on an entirely different wavelength to us. I must say, though, you must be pretty smart to impersonate us humans' calls like that..."
"And you seem to understand how I'm thinking pretty well..." Ryuk replied, "So I'd say you're smart too. Now, how about you use that brain of yours to figure out your next victim?"
Matt shuddered. This was a prison. He'd resigned himself to a prison. The only way he could ever be good in his, or anyone's eyes ever again was if, when he obligatorily killed, he killed people who 'deserved it', or killed others... and having the persistent threat of death under his nose meant that no matter how hard he tried to escape from his murder, there was no way he could, now that the constant reminder of his use of the Death Note was following him like a shadow...
Author's Note: Hello. This is Duwee Davis II (or perhaps Troy McLure). You may know me as the writer of the still incomplete '100 days of Mother/Earthbound' and the 'Touhou Doujin' series. Well, now I'm trying something completely different.
I've decided to do a 'what-if' scenario, in which if a different person to Light Yagami were to pick up the Death Note. Notably, Matt is different in that he hasn't got the emotional strength of Light, nor the ridiculously high levels of intelligence, yet also lacks his megalomania and is more sociable, plus he lives in a communal setting (a university hall of residence) rather than his own home, allowing for different potential ways to get 'rumbled'. Hence, the story should branch out in a way that, although having the same core concept as the original Death Note series, will undoubtedly be distinct from the original.
I managed to salvage the 'Gappy Stu self-insert' genre of Touhou fanfic with my 'Touhou Doujin' series (or so my fans think), so hopefully I can redeem the 'self-insert becomes Kira' genre of Death Note fanfic with this piece. We'll have to see.
I hope this turns out well...