BY : hColleen
Category: Death Note > General
Dragon prints: 1227
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.

“I got nothing,” Matt sighed, staring at the monitor that refused to show him exactly what he wanted to see

“I got nothing,” Matt sighed, staring at the monitor that refused to show him exactly what he wanted to see.

“What do you mean nothing? What’s all that?”

Amateurs, all six of them. “All of this is the underlying structure, displayed in code, for the bank you asked me to hack. What it tells me is the bank is not there. There is nothing. Useless information.”


“Look, I did as you asked. I hacked their servers, hacked their mainframe. There’s nothing there but an elaborate mock set up with piss-poor security and even worse anti-hacking abilities. This is either a pathetic attempt at a honey pot or a false lead. Either way, I’m done.” He pushed himself away from the keyboard, turning to find a gun in his face. The goggles he wore constantly hid the widening of his eyes. “Look, there ain’t jack there. Don’t know what you expect me to do.”

“Find it,” the guy behind the gun growled.

With a lot more bravado than he felt, Matt pushed the gun aside. “Look, you gave me the name, I traced that name through four false leads. There were no more leads. This was it, boys. And if you don’t like it, I’m just the messenger.” As in, don’t shoot me, he added mentally. Usually, bravado was enough. It would stop them, make them realize that he wasn’t scared shitless of them, even if he was, and they didn’t have that over him.

The gun moved back in his face. “I said find it.”

Some idiots didn’t get a hint. Again, Matt shoved the gun aside. This time, he stepped in close. “Look, I said, it ain’t there. Unless you got another name to give me, there ain’t nothin’ there.” He managed to not add ‘asshole’ when he heard a lot of other guns moving to point at him.

Matt raised his hands to his sides. “Look, now, if we can just talk about this like we’re civilized human beings, I’m sure we’ll figure out what it is you want.”

And then, his phone rang. Not his work phone, the phone that only two other people in the whole world had the number for. And only one of them would call him. ‘Fuck,’ he swore mentally while forcing a grin at the gun in his face. “Now, you boys gonna let me get that?” he asked in his most reasonable tone. “Can’t really say what they’ll do if I don’t answer.” Let them think that he was bugged, good idea. Next, he’d ask them to pull the trigger, too.

“Answer it. Play nice,” the man with the gun in his face growled. “Nuthin’ fancy here.”

“Got it, got it,” Matt reassured the man while reaching into his back pocket for his phone. “Yo,” he said into the mouth piece. He held the phone out a little so those closest to him could hear.

“Matt, got a job for you,” Mello’s voice filtered through the ear piece.

“Really? And that is?” He never asked what the job was. It was Mello. When Mello called, Matt went. End of story.

“Something right up your alley,” the answer came back. Matt knew Mello well enough to know there had been a pause. He also knew it wasn’t enough of a pause for the guys around him to catch it.

“Up my alley, huh? A gaming con?” he asked, teasing in his voice. “You want me to run a demo booth?”

Mello snorted. “Very funny, wise ass. A search and find. Got a very hot lead on that one I’m working on, but I’m needing a hacker to give me an extra edge.”

So, Mello and Near were still at it? At least Mello was tracing the call, that’s what a ‘search and find’ meant. Matt just needed to keep the line open a little longer. And, not get shot after he hung up. He could manage that. He hoped, at least. Would suck to manage one and not the other.

“You said this was up my alley, not work,” Matt complained. The guys with the guns were getting antsy. He really hoped Mello got a peg on him fast because they might have him end the call soon.

“I said it was a job,” Mello countered testily.

“Right, right. But, you can’t blame a guy for hoping that you’d call me for something worthwhile, can you?”

“How is a gaming con worthwhile?” Mello asked sarcastically. “Bunch of under-washed, over-involved dorks, most of whom live in their mother’s basements. Geeze, Matt, aim higher, why don’t you? At an anime con, at least, you have the cosplayer girls.”

“It is hard to argue against a short sailor outfit,” Matt agrees with a laugh. “Though, a short skirt on a girl who could kick my ass at Resident Evil, now that would be perfect.”

The guy with the gun was frowning, looking very unhappy. This probably wasn’t a good thing for him. He was going to have to wrap this up quickly.

“You and your weird ideas,” Mello grumbled. “Look, you gonna play hide and seek for me or should I get someone else?”

Mello had found him. He hoped his relief didn’t show on his face. “How urgent is it? I mean, give me a week, I might could,” he replies. He was running out of time.

“Resident Evil is not a legitimate job, Matt,” Mello countered. “I’ll give you three days, tops, to get your ass together and ready.” He was really close enough he could be there in three minutes? Matt was surprised. But, then, it was Mello. He shouldn’t have been surprised if he’d called outside the door. Not for the first time, he wondered if his phone had more trackers in it than he was aware of.

“But, the skirt won’t like it.” The guy with the gun was glaring.

“Yeah, yeah. Three days. You deal with the skirt. Not my problem.” Mello hung up on him.

‘Love you, too,’ Matt grumbled mentally as he slid the phone back into his pocket slowly. “Well, now,” he said, trying to sound reasonable. “You got another name for me to follow up on?” He only had to stall them for three minutes, after all. Oh, and get a hold of their guns so they wouldn’t shoot him when Mello arrived. Not much, really.

“Who was that?” the guy with the gun demanded.

“Regular. Thinks he owns me or something at times.” Well, in a way, Mello did. Matt would do, or at least make a very concerted effort to do, anything Mello asked. They were best friends. That’s what they did for each other.

And, the guy with the gun needed a name in Matt’s head to make him less threatening. Much easier to be brave when the bad guy has a name. ‘Bob’ he decided on. Bob didn’t like his answer. But, then, Bob hadn’t liked anything he’d done. If Matt were the type to take these things personally, he’d be offended.

“Name,” Bob demanded.

Matt gave the guy a weird look. “I don’t know your names. What makes you think I know his?” Anonymity was a hacker’s best friend, after all. It would be hard for him to figure out which was more his best friend, Mello or Anonymity. Mello might win most days. Today, it might be Anonymity.

“You said he was a regular.”

‘Boy, if these guys got any dumber,’ Matt grumbled silently. “Yeah, I recognize his voice. I don’t know his name.”

“He knows your name.”

“Not my real name. Besides, you have to be able to get my attention. Not the other way around.” Matt talks, they listen. That was that. If he talked, it was because he had something important to say.

Or was trying to get his ass out of a fire. Two minutes. The gun really needed to get out of his face. “Look, really. I’ve got three days. If you’ve got another lead, I’ll go for it. If not, why don’t we call it quits, then? I won’t even charge you for my time, if it’s that big a deal.” ‘I really need to screen my jobs better,’ he thought. Slowly, he moved his hand to push the gun out of his face. No sense spooking them when he still had several other guns pointed at him.

Bob let the gun be moved. He actually laughed. The rest of the guys around the room took up laughing in that hurried ‘oh the boss is laughing’ kind of way that irked Matt to no end. When the boss stopped laughing, it was a rippling that died through the room. “How about you get the information and we don’t kill you and call it square?”

Geeze, not an ounce of tact. One minute. He could make it one more minute. “Right. Now, if you don’t mind lowering the toys, I’ll get back to work.” He moved slowly back to the desk. Granted, he was armed. The guys hadn’t even bothered frisking him, but he knew better than to test his odds in a situation like this.

He was counting down in his head. If Mello said three, he meant three.

There was a knock at the door. The guys looked at each other, darting around the room. Two of them moved to the door, one on either side. “Who’s there?” the one by the door knob answered.

Matt almost choked when Mello’s voice came through in a falsetto. “Call girl.”

Another look, this one almost palpable, went around the room. Which one of them was desperate enough to order a call girl? “Who sent you?” the guy on the other side of the door asked.

“C’mon, you know they don’t tell us that,” Mello whined. “The agency just said go.”

Matt had to bite his lip and hope it didn’t show or that they weren’t paying attention to him.

Bob muttered, “Check. If she looks better than she sounds, why not?”

Matt’s jaw about hit his lap when Mello walked in the room. The skirt was definitely short, barely covering what it had to hide Mello’s assets. The wig was over the top red, long, over Mello’s left shoulder, hiding part of his face. But what really caught Matt’s eyes was the scar, a new addition. When the fuck did Mello pick that up?

Not that he had time to ask. A glance, a flick down of Mello’s eyes, was all the warning he got. Matt hit the ground as soon as Mello pulled out the gun, a fully automatic to the other’s semi-auto hand guns. “Now,” Mello said casually, his voice back in its normal register, “we have two choices. You give me my hacker and live or you die and I get my hacker.”

Bob’s gun was on its way to Mello when it stopped. Most likely because Mello’s gun was pointed right at him. And, Bob was smart enough to know that Mello’s gun was badder than his, even if he wasn’t smart enough to not hassle the hacker in the first place.

Mello smiled then. It wasn’t a good smile. It was a fucking frightening smile and Matt was sure Mello liked him and he was afraid. “Now, you boys have to the count of five to make up your mind.”

The guy who’d been by the doorknob didn’t even wait for Mello to start counting. He bolted with a look on his face like he was going to piss himself. Matt had to bite his lip hard to not laugh. For them to be afraid of Mello, who looked rather frail in the barely there clothing even with the big gun, was just too funny. Matt knew better. Mello was fucking scary, but these guys only knew what they saw.

“One,” Mello said calmly and the guy by the hinges darted around the door and out. Mello ignored him, or appeared to, his gun trained on Bob. Matt knew better. Mello was watching everything, listening.

“Two.” The next number was just as calm. Two guys on the right side of the room wavered and Mello looked at them, just moving his eyes, the gun trained on Bob as if there were a rope between it and Bob’s chest. That little glance had the two running out of the room after there companions.

“Three,” Mello said softly. All that were left were Bob and his right hand man. Matt was sure Bob would be stubborn and that Righty wouldn’t leave until Bob did.

“Four.” The number carried menace, more than Matt would have figured a single syllable could. He saw Righty glance at Bob, looking for direction.

Bob glanced at Matt where he lay on the floor and then at Mello. “I ain’t payin’ you,” he growled at Matt.

“That’s fine,” Matt replied cheerfully, waving a hand. He didn’t really need the money anyways. This job was just supposed to ease some boredom.

Bob looked disappointed somehow. He let the gun fall to his side and started walking stiffly at Mello.

Mello kept the gun steady on Bob as he stepped to the side. Matt almost groaned when he happened to glance up. He really did not need to know that his best friend had gone commando under the skirt. On his list of top ten things he never wanted to know, that was either one or three. Number two was most definitely what Mello would do if pissed at him. One or three, which ever wasn’t the skirt thing, was what it was like to be L.

Bob and Righty were out the door. “Get up, would you,” Mello growled.

“Dude, did you have to stand over my head?” Okay, so Mello wasn’t really over Matt’s head, but the point still remained.

“I could have taken longer and put on the rest of the outfit,” Mello growled. “There were nylons and heels, too.”

Matt looked at Mello’s feet for the first time. They were bare. “Where the fuck did you come from?” he demanded, pushing himself up so he was kneeling on the floor. At least this way, he couldn’t see what was and wasn’t under Mello’s skirt. He shrank into his vest, hiding the redness that spread over his face.

“Next door. You half-wit. I traced your MAC address. Honestly, you should know better.”

Matt pushed to his feet, patting his pockets for a cigarette. He felt he earned it. More than, really. “‘sup? Since you don’t need a hacker.” There were only three people in the world that could trace him, and one of those died.

“Got some surveillance to do. Need an extra pair of eyes. It’s down to getting evidence and the Japanese police are on the wrong side. Well, most of them.”

Matt didn’t really need any more than that. He’d been following Mello’s work, Near’s work, since they left Wammy’s house. He knew they were working on the Kira case and they’d targeted Light Yagami as both the fake L and as Kira. And, Matt hated surveillance. But, it was Mello. “I’m your man,” he said. “But…ummm…could you change first? I mean, you got some great legs, but seriously!”

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