Shades of Mystification

BY : Hellagoddess
Category: Death Note > General
Dragon prints: 20577
Disclaimer: I do not own Death Note, nor any of the characters from it. I do not make any money from the writing of this story.


Chapter Ten


Raito had gone after only an hour or so of arguing, leaving the showing in the capable, albeit butter-fingered hands of his two employees, knowing they couldn’t stuff it up if they’d tried. Sure they weren’t the brightest crayons in the box but they were still crayons and, therefore, useful.

So, after striding past the front desk and punching in his personal code, Raito started to wonder what he was doing there. This was so unlike him, to go running off across town and abandoning his work on someone else’s whim. He’d seemingly done it without a thought. If he hadn’t been in the lift already he thought he might have just gone back to the gallery.

But as it was, inevitably he arrived.

The lift dinged open, announcing his presence and he stepped out, determined not to make a fool of himself this time, nor get so close to the other man that he muddled his sensibilities.

It wasn’t that he had anything against gay people. It’s just that he wasn’t. Regardless of what the other man thought. Or inferred. Or hinted. Raito straightened his tie and cleared his throat, shining a cufflink on his jacket before continuing.

Sure, being gay was fine for other people but it just didn’t fit into his picture. He was supposed to work at the gallery for a few more years, find a wife, have a family and pass out his days in happiness. That was the plan, and he was sticking to it. Maybe if he just ignored this whole business, it would go away. Not for the first time, he wished that the gallery wasn’t do dependant on L for business, then maybe he could have just denied this budding…whatever it was and that would be the end of it.

Noting that he’d been standing at the lift door for some minutes now with no host come to greet him, Raito called out.

There no answer so he walked into the studio, taking note of all the empty chairs and decided to take one and sit down to wait. It seemed that Watari wasn’t there either. L had mentioned that the man lived in the building with him, the only other occupant. He was the artist’s contact with the outside world and allowed him to keep such a closeted lifestyle as he was accustomed to.

Raito tapped his fingers against the arm of his chair, giving into a tiny show of impatience when there was no one there to see it. Perhaps L was just in the bathroom or taking a shower. Although he couldn’t hear the spray of water, Raito convinced himself that that’s where he was and amused himself in the meantime by having a game of chess in his head.

After ten minutes had passed Raito was becoming irritated. First the man invites him over and then fails to be there! Surely if L was out they would have told him at the front desk as he walked past.

He stood quickly and walked up the staircase to check the loft. There was no dark-haired man, crouched in a chair with a brush in his fingertips. He walked back downstairs for one last check before going to the bathroom. The door was wide open but Raito knocked loudly to be polite before sticking his head tentatively round the corner.

Still no L.

He’d been so certain that’s where L had been that this setback was a little off putting. Where else could he be?

Raito faintly remembered being shown around on a previous visit and gingerly made his way to where the artist’s bed resided. It wasn’t even really in a separate room, just cut off by dividing screens like everything else. He called out again before looking around, noting the rumpled covers that couldn’t have hidden a sleeping body.

Now he was more than irritated. This was a joke! No one did this, not even rude, socially-stunted artists. And most of all, no one did this to him! He turned to walk out. He wouldn’t come next time, his own curiosity be damned. There was no point pursuing this friendship if the man didn’t even have enough respect for him to be there when he’d spent hours convincing him to come.

It was on his way back to the lift that he noticed the door.

He came up short, faintly remembering a few other rooms that L hadn’t shown him when he’d been given an impromptu tour last time. Then they had been shut tight and the artist hadn’t even glanced at them, let alone explained their contents. Raito had just thought they were some kind of storage cupboards, but now that he thought about it, there was no way that the living space that he’d seen would take up an entire floor, maybe half at the most. There must be something further behind these doors, and the one he was edging towards was cracked open slightly, as though pushed to by someone who didn’t expect to be in there long enough to bother closing it.

Without knowing why, Raito crept up to the door, his footsteps quiet. There was something sneaky about looking through a door that his host had neglected to show him previously that made him want to be silent. He gently pushed the door, glad that the hinge didn’t squeak and give him away as it slowly opened. He only gave it enough movement to create a gap he could stick his head through, which he did so with only a little hesitation.

He’d found him.

The room was dark, but for a single, hazy spotlight in the middle, hiding the detail of the rest of the space. L was crouched on the floor in profile to him, only slightly turned away and Raito could see from the way he sat that his habitual thumb was being bitten, the other hand resting, slightly splayed, on a folded knee.

But that wasn’t what made him gasp and give himself away as he stepped fully into the doorway.

L was crouched in front of a painting, one that Raito knew terribly well and wished he didn’t. It was the one that Mr. Ryuuzaki had purchased at L’s last showing. The nude.

He didn’t know what was more startling; the fact that L had somehow procured the painting back from the buyer or the fact that he’d been sitting in here, staring at it with such intensity for quite some time. Raito had been here almost an hour and hadn’t seen a glimpse of L that entire occasion.

L had turned quickly at his noise of shock, the openness on his face confusing Raito. His inky black pools were swimming with so many intense emotions that Raito couldn’t believe he was even looking at the same person. With what seemed a struggle, L closed his eyes for a few seconds and when they opened again, the emotions were dimmed, fading as the seconds passed till they were gone completely, back to the flat, obsidian that always frustrated the gallery owner.

But despite the retreating emotion in his eyes, his features read one single sentiment that he couldn’t hide fast enough.

Caught.

“Explain this!” Raito half-shouted, gesturing to the painting as he stepped forward. Now that he was actually in the room, he could see that there was more beyond the spotlight, other paintings in the darkness. With a jump of his stomach he noticed the painting he’d wanted, the lone man, sitting idly by, hung beside a host of others.

‘What the hell is going on here?’

His eyes swept around, picking out more and more as he began to estimate the size of the room. All these paintings, he recognized them! Every single one in here had been bought in the past from his gallery. Every single one had been purchased over the phone by Mr. Ryuuzaki.

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OMGWTFROFLCOPTERBBQ!?! – Current thoughts of Yagami Raito as of ending Chapter Ten.

We’re coming to the end of the shorter chapters! *buy earmuffs to deafen against cheering*

I’ve made you all a new Death Note video, and while I don’t feel it’s as good as the last one, I just wanted to make something special for all the fans of this story and didn’t have the internet. So please check it out!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TP9-e5rdVT8

Leave a comment if you feel so inclined! It keeps me motivated! Check my Livejournal for update information and additional story ideas I’m working on!

Thanks again for all your support on this story! Hope everyone’s still enjoying it! Please review :3




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