Another Note: Crime Scenes

BY : Resting-Madness
Category: Death Note > General
Dragon prints: 2261
Disclaimer: I don't make money from this work of fiction. I don't own the realm of death note's creation like characters and plot, and world. None of it is mine.

Mello shoved the car door open and stepped out with such a huff, even the house knew the former mafia leader was pissed- and it's not even alive! The blond couldn't figure out what was pissing him off so much: was it that they were getting nowhere in the case? That he was paired with Light to investigate? Or that he was simply over it for the time being? It was hard to say. Closing the door with more force than was necessary, Mello had to do a double-take from one of the unoccupied cars. He thought he saw someone sitting in the backseat.

When Light's door closed causing the overhead lighting to bounce off many of the reflective surfaces in the room, namely the windshield of the car Mello was looking at, the former detective figured it was a trick of the light; although, it was a very old home, and has seen its share of the living and dead. It was possible it could actually be haunted. If there could be Shinigami in the world, there can certainly be a ghost too.

There was a shuffling sound coming from the garage before an angry Mello burst through the door into the home, where he then bounded his way down the hall towards the kitchen, Light in tow. The new agent figured they'd discuss the case until he saw Mello grab a glass from the shelf, the jug of milk from the refrigerator, then two syrups from the pantry. One a Hershey's and the other a Nestle's.

With a smirk, Light exited the kitchen in wonder if that was what Mello considered 'having a double-shot' of something?

Walking the hall, he then hurried up the stairs to his and L's suit. There were sounds of life in a couple rooms where the doors were open, that could only be Matt and Near or possibly Gevanni. It could even be the help. But when reaching his destination, he listened to the door before going inside. He could hear nothing beyond the door. Curious as to why there weren't even sounds of pleasure from L indulging in a snack, Light raised his fist and knocked.

"L?" He called through the wooden obstruction.

"Just a minute, I'm building a tower." Came the disembodied voice of the detective.

Light waited outside of the door for L to move his current tower, or to secure it well enough that he could open the door without it falling over, but when four minutes passed and there were zero sounds of life going on beyond the door again, Light knocked twice before cracking the door and poking his head in to look around the obstruction; expecting to see a mess of toy houses and skyscrapers littered everywhere, he was baffled that he didn't see so much as a box containing the materials to build something. A very peeved Light entered the suit.

L turned in his chair at the computer desk. His large eyes were made even larger by the surprise in them over Light walking in. The detective was frozen, with his mouth open as wide his jaws would allow; and between his fingers, raised just over his chompers was a mutated Oreo cookie with enough cream for several rows of smaller cookies. The cream must have been scraped from others to have it towering between the chocolate ends.

L looked like an escapee from Sesame Street, or in a pose for a new puppet to be made from his likeness. And the blue shirt the man is sporting wasn't keeping Cookie Monster that far from onlookers mind.

Light's brow twitched in agitation. "I thought you said you were building a tower?"

There was the slightest sway of L's wrist to indicate that he was, in fact, building a tower. Several it seemed, because there's a plate on the desk that was loaded with mutant snacks. Light would have wondered where he got so much cream when each bag only has three rows of cookies, but, knowing L, he had a servant whip some up for him to use.

Lowering half the cookie into his mouth, L bit it away from the upper end; the icing left behind somehow held itself against the top cookie now supported between pinched fingers. "Sorry. I thought you'd left when I didn't come to open the door."

"Why would you open the door?" He took a seat on the bed, removing his sneakers.

"Why would you knock?" Replied L in his logic. "I thought you had something in your hands and needed me to get the door for you." A smirk spread across his lips. "You stood in the hall for minutes thinking the room was cluttered? That must have been awkward." He then popped the other half of the sweet into his mouth. Speaking around the mouthful, he asked. "To make up for it, you can have the biggest stack." The plate was lifted from the desk and held out to Light.

"I'll pass." His gaze looked out the window at the view of the sky. Looked like rain. Again. It went off and on with light drizzles since he and Mello had left Quimby's home. And chances are it would remain a steady stream if it started again.

Abandoning his luxury cookies, L joined Light on the bed. "Have you gotten any further in the case?"

"Depends on what you consider a step forward. We know this guy might be taking Quimby for the recognition, and we've got him doing a phony story about the unsub... But, so far, nothing spectacular."

"Mm." Intoned the detective.

"A little girl saw him, spoke to him... but he was wearing a mask." Light's light brown gaze took in the detective's haggard appearance, and gesturing by a swirl of his finger, he asked that L turn in his seat so his back was to him. Gripping the detective's shoulders Light set to massaging them. "Why are you so tense?" He asked after a few minutes of working the knots from between L's slouched posture. The detective must have liked it since he'd straightened up when the third knot was kneaded away.

"Am I?" Wondered L, or maybe he was just teasing Light by being evasive. It was hard to tell.

Lowering his hands to work L's lower back, he said. "I know you well enough by now. I see the signs." When L remained silent Light changed subject, "And where'd you come up with that ridiculous alias? Lethally Legal."

"Consider it an honor of my knowing what you're capable of." He looked over his shoulder, locking eyes with the former serial killer.

"Right."

Light would have rolled his eyes from lack of understanding that answer, but he refrained and instead focused on giving L a massage. Pressing a hand to the detective's back instructing him to lie down, Light moved over to straddle the back of L's legs.

"It's not just your muscle tension," said the masseuse. "You sound exhausted too. Why don't you get some rest," his hands pause their movements. "I'll watch out for you."

L scoffed, the drowsy sound muffled by the pillow beneath his face. "You make it sound as if I need protection from something or someone."

"I know how much you like your privacy," replied Light, "and where I don't think the others will harm you, they might come knocking on the door for something. Plus, it's gotta be strange living in a house with near-strangers." Light shrugged his shoulder. "Even I'm a little put-off by it. So why not sleep while I keep them from bothering you?"

L hummed his pleasure over the relaxing movements along his back and rear-end. He's never had his buttocks massaged before, it was odd- but in a good way. It's so considerate of Light to be looking out for him like this. But L wondered how long the effects would last? How long Light will remain a companion, a friend, a lover? His. The younger man has such a positive name, but there's so much darkness lurking behind it. If Kira was always there... Then would it have only been a matter of time before Light Yagami just became a different version of a Kira? Light wanted to be a detective, but life didn't often work out as one expected it to... He may have simply become a killer.

L peeked an eye open and looked over his shoulder at his masseuse, wondering, worrying... If things would change.

"You can tell me if something is wrong, L..." Light says when making eye contact with the detective. "I know you're upset about Watari, but you can tell me more."

"Is there more?" wondered L.

"I think that if I lost my mom and sister, I'd have more."

"Mmm. Good thing we're so different then."

Light couldn't help but bristle. "It isn't even fair for you to say that when I don't know anything about you to make comparisons." His hands move to kneading L's folded arms; he lowers the left one to better work on it. "Why not tell me something about yourself? Any little thing,"

"I won't tell you about my life, because I don't remember it. But I can tell you my personal preferences, cases I've done..."

"I see." And he did see. But he still found that odd, and wondered how someone couldn't have even the slightest memory of who they were before they became who they are.

L thought about what Light had said a moment ago, about looking out for him while he slept. "You're very protective of me, Light. Thank you." After a pause, he asked. "May I ask you something?"

"Okay?" The agent sounded unsure, but he figured he could at least hear what L wanted to ask.

"When you were younger, was there anyone that you wanted desperately to protect from harm?"

"Protect? When I was younger... My family, I guess."

"Your family?" L wondered about that. "You're sure nothing happened to you as a child, that you would want to seek safety in drastic proportions?"

L knew it was greedy to have asked Light a question like that, considering the younger man is now missing a huge part of himself that should be the one answering the question. The detective was taking advantage, with his own agenda to learn more about Kira. But it feels like he's asking a kid if his parents are fighting, because when asking the adults they say 'They're fine'.

Light cocked a brow, his massaging ceased altogether as he stared down at the detective's profile; L's eyes are now closed as if to keep Light from seeing the reason for the question. "What are you talking about, L?"

"I'm only inquiring about you." Answered the detective.

It wasn't purely for a personal Kira Q&A, L genuinely wanted to know about Light Yagami as a person. He'd met the bright young man during the case when Kira's being- as they considered it- had moved on to someone else. And where he lacked certain stimulations that Kira gave him, L found that he appreciated Light for Light.

He would get around to asking about Light Yagami once he was done asking about Kira. And to finish his thought, L continued. "Who in this world would need protection badly enough to wipe out fifteen percent of it?"

Appalled, Light asked. "You're saying it's myself? That I'd be that arrogant?" Climbing from L, he glowered at him. "And who is so important that half the world would be after them?" Genuinely stunned, Light shook his head.

That was L. Infuriation personified. Light didn't know why he'd allowed himself to react like that. He needed to school it in before they wound up fighting for the eight-hundredth time in their existence with each other.

Rubbing L's lower back, he spoke calmly. "Even if there was someone like that, I couldn't be in a thousand different places to preemptively stop something from happening."

L opened his eyes looking at Light again. Taking in the young agent's expression, he assessed the reply. 'He's answering sincerely. He really means what he's saying.'

"You sure ask some strange questions when you're tired." Laying down beside L, Light added, "you may wanna reconsider that offer to sleep."

"You're so adamant about it... it makes me think you're gonna steal my wallet." Rolling so that he's on his back, L stared up at the ceiling.

Light watched the detective carefully, wondering what he was thinking or feeling. He'd even settle for a sneeze from the vacant gaze. With his index and middle finger, he walked them down L's torso. A mock pair of legs. A God's legs, just walking on water to shore. Light's fingers stopped moving when reaching the button of L's jeans. The index tapped at the silver button like it was knocking on a manhole.

L scrutinized all of these actions, before looking over at the person who'd made them. He and Light haven't been physical since it all went down in the yellow box warehouse. Light had been recovering. He still is. All of them, recovering. Physically and emotionally. The detective's long fingers came up to meet Light's interlocking with them. It was a possibility. Interlocking them.

Down the five stairs and a distance through the hall; Matt tried to suppress a snicker when Mello bound into the room and collapsed onto the bed with enough 'harrumph', to bounce his head off the headboard before it rested against it.

"I take it things did not go well?" He inquired to the pouting blond.

Taking a gulp from his double-chocolate milk, Mello side-eyed his lover about ready to tell him to shut it, but opted for, "We're looking for a man with a weird accent, wearing a Frankenstein mask nowhere near Halloween, and- oh- he might be black."

Matt chuckled with his face at the computer screen, continuing to type.

Curious, Mello nodded to gain the gamer's attention then asked. "What about you? What are you doing?" He took a long gulp from his drink before setting the empty glass down on the bedside table. "Did you get anywhere with the cipher?"

Shaking his head, Matt replied. "So far we're looking for a man who may or may not kill a twin that lives near the Thames or some other such body of water." He laughed at Mello's laugh. "But that's a big ass 'if'. Right now, I'm looking in on some dick who hacked Gevanni's laptop while Near was using it. It's just too weird of a coincidence for it not to be looked after- it could be our guy."

Mello nodded, then tucked himself under the blankets rolling over and over again as if trying to get comfortable.

From the peripheral of Matt's orange-covered gaze over the laptop, he can see Mello's movements and a smile erupts from his lips. "Why does it look like I should be joining you over there? I'm not so busy you have to go it alone."

Mello groaned which only made Matt continue picking on him, as he declared "ooh baby" to the situation. Sitting up on his elbows, he grabbed a pillow from the bed tossing it at the hacker. Matt's husky nicotine laugh filled his ears as he hid under the blanket when the pillow came flying back.

"You better watch it, red. I know where you sleep." Came a disembodied voice from under the blanket. "I'm just sick of pretending movement is progress. We need something solid."

"I know, I know. But for now, let's just chill." His fingers hammered away on the keys. "We're allowed to have cold spots and just rest. That's when we get our thinking window."

Matt wasn't wrong. But still, Mello is a man of action. So as he further buried himself in bed like a rabbit in a hole, he couldn't help thinking that resting fucking sucked.

They weren't the only ones resting from the case. Near is in his room working on another case. It seemed this one was coming to a close and would be shut as soon as tomorrow afternoon. But first, he needed to book a flight to Denver. Then buy a change of clothes. Gevanni was with Rester in the library down the hall, putting together a dossier to read on the plane for the end of the day.

Rubbing work-weary eyes, he looked at the clock. Dinner would be soon, but he figured he was owed a snack; flirting with pedophiles was exhausting on one's nerves. It would be impossible for a normal person to do it and not blow their cover when reading these people's words, or from constantly having to reject live chats over a mic or face time through skype. You'd either go mad and chew the perv out or you'd kill yourself.

Reaching into the side table, he removed a Swiss chocolate bar to eat before dinner. He gave a hum of appreciation over the taste washing across his pallet. The strip of chocolate has nuts and raspberry nugget in each of the five pip-molds. It was strangely delicious.

"Ralph, what happened to April?" Near said for Leonardo; he didn't even try to impersonate the voice actor.

Said toy was currently tied to a bus across the room with Foot soldiers stationed here and there all over it; two Ninja Turtles stand dormant a couple feet away.

Eating the final piece of chocolate; he lowered the wrapper to the bed to type a response to the man on the other side of the screen that he would wear the Barbie panties he'd asked him to. Crossing the room he tossed the wrapper into the trash can, that's when the intercom crackled to live.

Over the speaker came the voice of the downstairs butler. "Dinner is now being served in the dining room."

L's dark gaze glanced to the intercom beside the bedroom entrance. "Aren't you going to dinner?"

Light scoffed. "Would it inconvenience them if I didn't?"

L wasn't sure if Light meant the servants or the other house guests. Either way, he appreciated their time together right now. Something to eat could be brought up later, there was no need for care.

It was long overdue that the two touched each other in private company. L must have missed it, must have needed it. Light could tell by how detective's eyes fluttered closed to savor the small contact of the simple closeness of Light's lips to his cheek. Light doesn't kiss the pale flesh- not right away- too enraptured in just being there. That he was the only one able to be there for the detective in that way.

Their noses brushed lightly past each other's, lips just ghostly present to lips. Light's hands had replaced his breaths against L's cheek but now it moved tenderly to the back of the detective's head, playful threading the hairs there around his fingers.

Watching his own hand, L's fingertips traveled up Light's bare arm like the mock pair of legs that crossed his ocean. Those long fingers tickled shivers up the investigator's spine. They passed over the bare flesh of his the back of Light's neck before detouring up the back of his head into his soft hair.

They've only been sexual a few times during the Kira case, the event surprising them both each time. Their roughness and fighting can be therapeutically good- in their eyes. The outside world just grew worried. But for them, it was a release of tension until they surprised themselves by doing one better. But there's the before sex, those moments of simple acknowledgment of each other. That was their quiet. Their masterpiece of togetherness. When they could just explore through touch and taste. The knew every inch of each other intimately, down to the textures of skin and the notice of new hair growth amongst a sea of millions, to be exaggerant.

Light continued making the first move. He removed his shirt then jeans and boxers, each with one fluid motion. L watched with muted interest before getting out of his own clothing. It was time to turn closeness into a connection.

Light leaned over L's body pressing a kiss to the joint of the detective's leg. It was such an odd place to be kissed that L's pulse raced instantly from the allure. And he smiled, unseen by the cause of it, when Light's kisses, nips, and licks massaged the flesh of his torso. When those lips moved to his neck, the detective appreciated the smell caressing his senses. Light always smells good. He could never place the exact scent. It's just good. And as he felt his hips being straddled, he watched through half-lidded eyes at a former killer being kind.

L took Light's hand and kissed his palm three times before his lips move to his shoulder. Light's other hand occupied L's hip and with his thumb made little circles, around and around. The younger man's hips imitated the movement doing the same. Slowly against L. Around and around.

The detective smoothed his hands over Light's taut body, just to feel the muscles work. But his grip rested on the investigator's buttocks giving it a squeeze.

Downstairs in the dining room. The five house guests took their seats around the polished-wood table. It was hard to say who'd noticed first that L and Light weren't with them, the servants or the detectives. But their absence was obvious.

Upstairs. Light put some bite into his kisses. The sweet tongue tasted like chocolate cream, accented well with L's warm lips that clamped onto the appendage exploring his mouth. Their noses Eskimo kiss when their lips part. The movement of their hips wouldn't allow them anything but to catch their heated breaths. Forced breathless by pleasure. It was good. Very good.

On the first detection of man-made lubricant, L raised Light's up and assisted him down over his length. He kissed Light's exposed throat when the investigator arched his back.

Downstairs. Dinner was underway with the assumption that the lord of the manor and Light would be down once they were done talking. At least everyone assumed they were talking, but the confusion was soon replaced with a certainty of the matter that the pair wouldn't come down anytime soon- if at all.

Overhead was the sound of banging. Familiar banging.

Gevanni seemed to be stifling a laugh around a bite of food. Rester ignored it, and instead looked over the police reports. Near spared a glance at the ceiling where the banging was coming from but continued his meal with a stiffened posture. Matt plugged himself into his iPOD, the quickest playlist would do. And Mello turned red. The only people who seemed genuinely nonplussed were the servants. They kept composure in the face of anything.

Mello growled. It was gnawing at him like the banging was knocking on his head as if it was a door, and it wanted acknowledgment. It wanted him to hear the banging overhead. Wanted him to know the pattern in which his mentor was being boned by the biggest prick to walk the planet! Ugh! The sound was akin to someone trying to move furniture while sitting on it. He couldn't take it anymore! And nearly flipping his plate, he stood from the table and stormed out of the room. Near went after him with just as much bitterness.

Matt could only grimace but remained at the table eating dinner to the sweet sounds of rock.

"Mello," Near caught up to the enraged older investigator at the end of the hall. He can see him through the reflection of the window. The blond looked ready to punch through the glass, and might have, had he not distracted him. "I know what you're thinking,"

"No, you don't." Snapped the embittered. "He's... He doesn't deserve to be with L."

Near agreed. But he also wanted to respect L's wishes about his feelings for Light Yagami and not Kira. "As much as I agree with you, L told me that we have to stop seeing Light as Kira. He's not that person anymore... And even if we don't see it... L does."

"So what? I'm just supposed to like it?" Mello faced the teen with a gaze that could melt a glacier. "Fuck you."

Near shrugged. "We're going to watch out for L, whether he believes he needs it or not. In the meantime, we just ignore anything involving a 'them'. Matt agreed with me."

Mello wondered why that made a difference? He still hated the whole damned situation. He needed a distraction. Pushing past Near he hurried to his and Matt's bedroom, well-aware that, though it's on the second floor, the home is soundproof- at least wall to wall.

After retrieving a candy bar, and a bite was snapped into the sweet-sweet chocolate, his glaring at the situation mellowed and settled on Matt's opened laptop on the bed. And he remembered.

0 0 0

He was barely thirteen years old. Fury in a 73 pound package. Mello had been through a particularly long class of learning about forensic science when he saw a figure move through the hall at a speed that made it a blur. Straightening like he'd been jolted in the rear to sit up, Mello craned his neck in vain, since the speeding bullet was already gone. But the moment didn't leave Mello, even after class got out, or when he had left the dining room from there and wandered the hall during free period. Mello just thought of the elusive detective who he only knew through a screen and a synthetic voice. L could have stood right beside him anywhere in the home at any time, and he would never have known. Something about that didn't sit right with him.

Mello didn't do exclusions, he just didn't. Not when living in a home where everything but your personal identity is shared. So he set a plan into motion to at least touch the man. Figuratively speaking. Watari gets to touch L, and gets to know him personally. And L has been put on high as their mentor, so why can't they get to know him along with striving to be him?

"There." He beamed at the sketchpad that Matt got for Christmas last year. Written on it are the words: Hi, I'm Mello. From there, he took the book up to the empty third-floor wing of Wammy's where A, B, and L reside. Occupied, now, only by L.

'Now where are those cameras? Ahh.'

Walking over to the camera beside the door where L worked, Mello held up his sign. His touch. So the man could see it. A camera isn't just for show, the feed must be somewhere beyond that door, seen by the persons inside. There was no way L wouldn't get the message, or maybe even see it himself.

The pad dropped against his lap like it suddenly weighed a ton; he eyed the camera with curiosity and then with a resigned sigh walked away.

...

Mello, in the present, smiled at the memory. He hadn't known L had seen the message. He hadn't known the man had zoomed the camera on his words that first day. Touched back.

...

Unsure of whether or not he was being received, Mello continued writing notes to L and raising them to the camera. But nothing came of it. Half the time he wasn't even sure the man was inside. Not until a week had gone by did he take a different strategy with the mysterious detective. He'd showed up with a chess move. And over the move he'd written: Chess? And the next day when he went back, he found a sticky-note on the door with a counter to Mello's move. And the encounter with an alien began.

L had won every game, of course. But Mello never let up. Never stopped striving to beat the man. Even as he'd done his lessons, he thought about the next move he'd make. The one that would bring victory. Honestly, he had to know what would come of beating him? Would L acknowledge it or start another game?

And Mello had told no one about it. Not even his best friend Matt, who he liked to think he told everything. Not even his rival, Near, just to one-up the stoic little piss. L had been gone for a long time. Their games, of course, came to a stand-still. Then, one year later, Mello came back from lessons with plans of playing hide-n-seek with a bunch of kids outside, but he skittered to a stop when he saw a laptop sitting on his bed. Stuck to the back of the electronic was a sticky note that read: Checkmate. And a move. The closure to their incomplete game.

'Rats,' thought the teen, until he raised the screen and saw the large monogram L'What's this...?' He wondered.

"Greetings, Mello. I trust I'll be seeing another game of chess from you tomorrow afternoon? But for now, I thought I'd tell you a story about an old case of mine."

It was like sneaking porn the way the teen had grabbed a set of headphones and listened in to his mentor's words in private.

0 0 0

Mello let his tiny smile blossom into a grin. L had told him three cases during that week of his return. And in Mello's death, his memoirs of what L had told him would be sent out to all the letters of the alphabet, as sort of a final 'fuck you', that he'd had what they never could. That even though he didn't beat Near or couldn't- to be fair- he at least had something that no one else could. But then he hadn't died. And L hadn't died. Which was great, because now all the other Wammy's will believe that Mello had met L. Face-to-face and in person, to have heard the tales. When, really, he'd been privy to them but not him. L.

Until now. Things are great now. But Kira's here.

'Shit.' There went his good mood.

Dinner had gone on for another hour after Mello had left, leaving him alone to stew. The remaining diners, Near included, then enjoyed a dessert of fresh sliced peaches over flaming ice cream for an extra fifteen minutes. Mello was on his second chocolate bar by the time Matt returned. He was gonna get an earful.

Matt walked into the room smiling at Mello, who'd said something to him. But instead of hearing what the ticked off blond had said it looked more like he was singing a line from the song that's still playing in Matt's ears. Mello gave the cheeky bastard a belligerent look because he could guess at what was so funny, and he then flipped him off.

Removing his earbuds and the player they're attached to from his pocket, Matt dropped the items onto the coffee table, then dropped onto the seat beside Mello. "Are we still pouting?" He asked.

"Shut up." Mello brushed off the joking part of the comment, only because he was just starting to feel better and didn't need further reminding of why he had been pissed. Nor did he need to be teased about it.

"You should have grabbed some music and gone back, that steak and kidney pie," he shook his head in disbelief as he lit up a cigarette. "You'd take a kick to the balls for one forkful."

"I can get something later."

"Never mind that, I came to cheer you up."

Mello cut his eyes at Matt. "That's the last thing I wanna do after hearing that crap."

"Not that, I meant that thing you like to do but it turns my stomach," Matt removed his phone from the other pocket of his vest when seeing that his laptop had been moved to the bed. He wished the help wouldn't touch his things when they cleaned the room. It wouldn't have been in the way on the coffee table anyway. Although looking up addresses on the phone would be faster. "Let's go clubbin'."

"Seriously?" The fact that that had come from Matt did perk Mello up, and he stood up from the loveseat heading for the closet.

"Yup. I'm willing to deal with a room crowded with juicy, grinding people just to cheer you up." He grinned like he should be awarded for his charity. And considering he was intensely uncomfortable with crowds, he should be.

"You're a saint." Mello's sarcastic muttering traveled from the closet. He exited mid-dress and continued tugging on a form-fitting black shirt. "Well, if you're dressed, I'm ready to go. I can't bare another minute in this house right now."

"I'll go as I am." Into his phone, he spoke to the search app. "London nightclubs." Looking at the screen he swore when 'Pubs' popped up instead of nightclubs. "Fuckin' hell- no, not fucking." He bellowed at the images popping up. "Whoever programmed this shit is probably having a good laugh." He turned off the auditory search and typed by hand.

Mello left the room with a laugh over Matt flipping him off. He scampered down the stairs, departing for the garage. He heard Matt calling after him that he'd be down in a minute.

Leaving the room, the redhead went down the hall and had to pause a minute when seeing Near in his room. He'd gone to ask the younger detective if he'd like to claim hypopituitarism being the reason he doesn't look 21, and go to the club with him and Mello. But the vision before him slammed the words into the backs of his teeth.

Near is sporting a curly brown wig done up with blue ribbons in half pigtails, he's also wearing a pale blue sundress with two-toned stockings that are sheer at the thigh and up but black at the bottom where cats were printed at his knees. But the kicker was the way the teen expertly crossed the room while wearing a pair of four inch Mary Jane shoes to grab his plane ticket from the coffee table.

Shaking off the stupor, Matt said in what he hoped was a casual tone and not bewildered nausea. "That's for work, right?"

"Of course." Came Near's voice, which was anything but feminine. A huge relief. "Did you get anywhere with the cipher?" Blue contact lenses caught Matt's gaze, and Near scoffed when the redhead looked away, unable to meet the strange gaze.

"Not yet. You?" He played on the door frame.

"No. So I'm off on something else while I think it through." He stepped over to the door and passed Matt on his way out. "Did you need something?" He asked when realizing that Matt was at his room.

Recovering from the whole awkward scene, Matt looked at him. "I was gonna ask if you wanted to go to the club with me and Mello?"

Near blanched at the idea. "Even if I weren't about to leave, would I have said yes."

Holding up his hands in defense, he stated. "Same here. But, I figured I'd cheer Mel' up." Walking behind Near and his agents, who are also carrying a single suitcase, Matt paused at the railing turn-off. "Too bad, though, I'd pay good money to watch you dance."

Near looked up from the middle of the staircase to shoot him a humored smirk. Matt checked his watch seeing that it wasn't late enough for a club to be open, he figured he'd take Mello out for dinner first, then they could linger somewhere until midnight.

As he rounds the banister Matt glanced in the direction L's room was located; scratching the back of his head in thought, he sighed. 'Hope the newlyweds are done by the time we get back.'

In the detective's bedroom, the pair were still well into their activity of 'taking a break'. Their warm breaths puffed against sweat sheened faces in a lolling manor. Between movement and kissing, L would lick at and suckle Light's throat. It was enticingly heady. Light could almost envy the taffies the man often sucked on every day.

The younger man kissed those sweet lips deeply then moved back to take the detective in. His flushed face, his sweat stuck hair... Light found his attractiveness unnerving. Not just the way L looked beneath him while the older detective was inside of him, but that he, Light, was bringing it out of him. Making a man who seemed to know so much but feel so little... ExpressFeel. Right now, L is a man letting go. A man who was just feeling.

The investigator paused the movement of his hips a moment as images played through his mind on a mental-movie-reel. Stairs. Stained glass. And L, looking at him through sodden bangs. ...A sad and sincere, beautiful 'goodbye' between them. But from when? And why?

Before the thought could be grasped, Light leaned over to meet a kiss he'd been pulled into. He jumped a bit when the detective cupped him from the back of his thighs, fondling him there with the same pattern that his tongue is exploring the older male's mouth. Light voiced his pleasure as he moved over L's heat that was stuffed deep inside of him. And as one final burst of sizzle shocked through their conjoined bodies, they came to rest against each other.

After a time of recovering their breaths, Light cupped L's face and just kissed him. Not with fever or hunger, just to kiss. And L drowsily kissed back, until sleep took him.

Light looked down at the ghost on the pillow. Wondering about the sleeping man. Is he older or younger than he assumes? What is his natural laugh like? A real laugh. Cocking his head, Light asked in a whisper. "Who are you, under all those aliases?"

Smoothing a hand over L's collarbone, he looked around the sunset bathed room before getting up to shower. When the water could be heard from the bedroom, L turned over onto his stomach and thought about Light's question. Who is he? And is that person someone he could share with Light?

1 p.m.

The room was jumping with techno music and electronic tracks and remixed pop tunes. There was barely room to dance, the floor was more like a place to stand if you wanted a kid or a couple hundred quickies. Matt wanted desperately to sit and observe but Mello kept him on his feet, moving along with the rest of the clubbers.

For Britts to be so reserved, they certainly knew how to get the room jumping. Flashing lights, blaring horns, smoke exhaust. Shots were poured, even on the dance floor! Now and then Mello's arms would wrap around Matt's shoulders and he'd plant a kiss on his lips. Matt loved when Mello rubbed up against him in leather pants, he could feel a certain something a lot better than he could through jeans.

"Alright, baby." A woman shouted at them during a kiss. Then she handed them a shot each.

Mello wasn't about to drink it, but Matt downed the thing like it was a cure. Their supplier took the glasses back, drinking Mello's offering for herself and continued dancing with her company. The Scala nightclub had a live band waiting in the wings to play in a bit, a group called Gully Bop.

It was looking around at all the colors illuminating the room from the swirling overhead that Mello's gaze landed on a dark figure at the bar. Watching them? He couldn't be sure. It's a big room, with more than 200 people dancing in it. He or she could have been looking at anyone.

Mello's erratic dancing slowed to a near stop as he watched the flickering lighting dance on the person's pale face. Their sunken eyes looked even more hollowed.

'He had on a weird sort of hat.' The little girl's words danced through his memory as he observed a top hat on the man's head. The rest of the description played after that, about his pale face, and his strange clothes.

'Could it... be?' He had no knowledge of why or how, but there was just too much of a coincidence.

The figure across the crowded floor seemed to notice Mello was watching, or presumed, and raised a glass to his voyeur. He tilted his head and watched the blond's movement stop. It was time to go. Sliding from the stool like he had thirty feet to work with in the crowded room, the unsub departed.

"That's him!" Mello called over the music.

Matt had to be tapped on the shoulder to notice the blond's disquiet because he was both dancing and behaving like a germaphobe by trying his damnedest not to touch anyone. He spun around to see what was up and locked eyes with Mello's departing back. Confused he swiftly followed after him. Matt could see what was going on as he got closer to the speeding former mafia, Mello was following someone.

Looking up over as many heads as he could, there were a few people moving about the floor but they weren't as obvious about getting around as the tall figure wearing a hat. Matt picked up speed and managed to get beside Mello through the human car wash.

"Can you still see him?" He called over the music.

The colorful lights dimmed then came back up again, flashing bright white peppered by black spots around and around, the song playing was by Flo-Rida. The pair almost lost the pursued until a door onto the street swung open.

"Over there!" Mello pointed.

They dashed out the door into an alley. It was hard to see through the heavy rain and the steam rising from the warm streets. They couldn't even hear footsteps running through the wet on the ground.

"Where the fuck did he go?" bellowed Mello spinning around as if the unsub would spring out on them. There was just no way the man had gotten away that quickly. They were right behind him!

Matt looked around just as hopelessly before he shrugged in defeat. Ellis Quimby, it would seem, was no longer the only one being watched...

It had been a long night. They searched the area until 2:30 in the morning, and finding no sign of the murderer they finally went home. After a thorough shower to wash away the drenching rain and the stink of failure, Mello and Matt retired to bed. Sleeping was not an option. They were lying there just staring up at the ceiling. Thinking.

"How did he know we would be there?" Mello wondered. "It couldn't have been an accident, he had to have known we were there."

Matt was quiet until something dawned on him. "The hacker! He could have turned on anything when he got into the computer," sitting up, Matt grabbed his hair as if trying to pull the stupid mistake from his hard-drive. "And I was saying the name of the club I was looking for when I was using that stupid Google search, he could have heard the whole damned thing."

Mello watched Matt beat himself up. But it wasn't Matt's fault, and he shouldn't have even thought to blame himself for it. "It doesn't matter how he found out, he wanted us to know that he knows we're investigating him. Us specifically. That dick just wants to get off on the attention, he's not done with whatever he's doing... Not yet."

Matt appreciated the tempering, but he still felt his nerves pricked with annoyance. He needed an outlet. Grabbing his Vita from the bedside table, he laid back down on the bed waiting for Parasite Eve 3 to boot up.

'He must have multiple computers; there's no way he could get through my virus.' He thought, having been reminded because the bug is Eve crashing the rebooted computer over and over. '...Crashing computers?' His game landed with a thud beside him and he climbed out of bed almost too fast, he nearly tripped while going to the waste basket where all the balled up papers were still located.

"What is it?" Mello asked watching Matt grab a pen and start scribbling once he sat down on the couch.

"It was so obvious that I missed it... The cipher."

Getting out of bed, Mello crossed the room and sat beside him to observe.

"We over-complicated things, when it was as simple as this..." he wrote the cipher down on paper. "In Parasite Eve 2," he ignored Mello rolling his eyes at the game referencing he was doing. "Aya had to solve a puzzle on a busted computer. There was a worm that scrambled passwords."

"A little faster." He didn't mean to rush his overjoyed lover, but he wanted something good to come from the fucked up day.

"Not only did it scramble the password but it alphabetized it, and it numbered how many letters were used." Then in a Wheel-of-Fortune-type manner, he solved the 2 puzzles and showed Mello.

1E.1H.2L.1O - Hello. 1A.1C.3E.1.2I.2L.1M.1N.20.1S.3T - It's nice to meet you all.



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