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29 April 2007 @ 01:39 pm
Brightly Burning (40 Nights: Kaito/Aoko)  
Title: Brightly Burning
Fandom: Detective Conan/Magic Kaitou
Author: Candyland
Theme: #2—I’m willing to sacrifice anything just for you.
Pairing: Kuroba Kaito/Nakamori Aoko
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: All characters are the property of Gosho Aoyama. I do not own them. I merely borrow them, drop them in a blender, hit puree, and watch them dance. Yes, dance, my pretties…ahem.
Summary: The flames were warm, constant, soothing, and so beautiful…



Kaito stared into the fire, watching the flames leap and dance and twirl as they cast shadows on the walls. He could feel the warmth on his face. It was a stark contrast to his inner cold, and the heat was slowly working its own unique brand of magic on his tired limbs and aching joints. He hurt. He hurt all over. He felt like an old man, a far cry from his eighteen short years.

Still, in spite of the warmth from the fire, another shiver threaded down his spine. But at the same time, a thin trickle of perspiration slid down the back of his neck, down the collar of his blue dress shirt. He’d already loosened his red tie and undone the top button. He needed to breathe, even though his lungs appeared to be working against him.

Close. It had been so close tonight.

And that was why he was shaking like a wind-tossed leaf. The last dregs of adrenaline were slowly draining away, leaving behind exhaustion and comprehension of exactly how close it had been. He’d sat down to steady himself and catch his breath. By all accounts, he should have taken off running the instant everything started happening.

But that wouldn’t do at all—if he tried to flee in his current state, while wearing the snowy guise of his infamous alter ego, there was no chance of making his usual clean escape. He wouldn’t have gotten far—he would have been caught red-handed, and it would have been all over.

With one hand, he reached up to his face and carefully removed the monocle he wore. It fit right into the palm of his hand, the silver bright against his white gloves; it reflected the nearby firelight, causing part of the arch to glow a dull yellow.

He regarded the small circle of metal and glass carefully. It was what distinguished him, Kuroba Kaito, from his infamous alter ego, the notorious thief known as Kaitou Kid. It symbolized his promise to his father and to himself. It represented the moments where he felt the most alive, dancing on the wire and risking everything. It was a sign of his fate, his destiny, and his curse…

In a moment of sudden fury, he threw the monocle. It dashed against the floor and shattered. He couldn’t decide if he regretted the act or not, and so opted instead to just put it from his mind, and instead refocused on the fire in front of him. Was this what insanity felt like?

The rage vanished as quickly as it had appeared, leaving him to feel tired and alone. Poker Face was a lost cause, not that there was anyone around to see his weakness at that moment. But there were people on the way. Over the crackling of the flames before him and the pounding of blood in his ears, he could hear sirens approaching.

The police, coming to the scene of the latest Kaitou Kid appearance. Poor souls. They were utterly unaware that what they were going to stumble across when they arrived wasn’t anything at all like what they were undoubtedly expecting.

Kaito felt an uncharacteristic twinge of guilt as he thought of Nakamori-keibu discovering this scene, and how he would react to it. He hoped the Inspector wouldn’t take it too hard, but he knew that it was a vain wish—the poor man was in for more of a shock than he probably expected.

Without any real reason to, he glanced up, unsure of what he might see, and through the thin haze of smoke, he saw a small window near the ceiling. Beyond it, he could see a small portion of the night sky. It was so beautiful out there. He could see the stars, dotted all over the black-blue velvet of the night sky. Scarce to be counted, they circled what little of the moon he could see from his vantage point.

It was a full moon tonight. He knew that, though he could only see a small corner of it. Still, it was so beautiful. So very, very beautiful…and he was woolgathering. His thoughts were going all over the place. He turned away from the window and looked back at the fire. It was comforting to see it. It was constant; it just continued to burn, without regard for anything else. Steady. Consistent.

And that was soothing.

With a sigh, his eyes drifted from the flames to the unmoving form on the floor beside him.

Aoko was laying on her side, her upper torso twisted so that her face was towards the heavens. Her vacant, unblinking eyes stared up at the ceiling, empty and unseeing. He reached out to take her lifeless hand in his own, and used his other hand to close her eyes. “I’m so sorry, Aoko.” Though he couldn’t exactly say why, it somehow struck him as ironic, that no one would actually hear his final words.

Still, at least he had said them.

He had sworn that he would pay any price to bring his father’s killers to justice. And now he was making good on that oath. He just hadn’t expected this to be the toll. He’d expected to sacrifice freedom, friendships, possibly even the budding relationship developing with the most important person in his life.

But the price was far, far higher than he had anticipated, though he had known that the potential penalties were dire. Instead of his relationship with Aoko being sacrificed…Aoko herself had been lost. And rather than freedom…he had forfeit his own life, too.

Not that it mattered a great deal, though. Seeing her die, he’d lost it all.

I would have sacrificed anything for you...but you're the one thing I never would have sacrificed.

He coughed. It was almost over.

So he sat beside her, his back pressed against the wall, silently promising that he would see her again very soon. He watched the consistent, warm, soothing flames as they brightly burned around him, so beautiful. And he waited patiently for the fire consuming the building to devour them both.



PS. Whoa. Slight change of pace, yes? I have no idea where this came from, it just kind of…happened.

I’m sure someone will want to throttle me for this. But you don’t know where I live, so I’m safe. I think. I hope. Should I be paranoid? Maybe. (shifty eyes) Anyway, yes, I killed them both. I actually had two ideas for knocking them both off (and God, that sounds horrible). The second will probably pop up at some point, because I’m taking over the world once character death at a time. Yay!

Thanks for reading, all. Much love!