Fandom: Detective Conan
Characters: Kudo Shinichi/Mouri Ran
Theme: #23—what you say, what you mean
Disclaimer: I do not own Detective Conan. All characters are the property of Gosho Aoyama. I simply threaten to make them watch old Barney tapes unless they obey me. Trust me, they listen.
Summary: Ran…you haven’t told ME how you feel.
Trying to find his footing after the Black Organization’s fall wasn’t easy, but Shinichi was attacking the challenge with a great amount of enthusiasm. That was due, in part, to the fact that he was himself again, and a lot of people really didn’t know how to deal with his “little secret.”
The toughest situation, of course, was how to handle things with Ran. She told him aloud that she forgave him, but her eyes told a different story. This was driven home when she would avoid him with seemingly-legitimate excuses. He was seeing less and less of her, and it hurt. After quite a while of this, he decided that the best way to handle it was a frontal confrontation. Would it be easy? Absolutely not. But…he had to ask her something…
Needless to say, Ran was not quite as pleased as she should have been (had she truly forgiven him) when he appeared on her doorstep one morning. She had just finished putting the breakfast things away when the knock came on the door. “Shinichi!” she said, her hand tightening around the doorknob.
He smiled slightly. “Thought I would drop by and say hello.
“Oh…I see. Come in.” It was stilted and forced, but he took the invitation. For a few minutes, they stood there engaged in what was little more than small talk. It only served to further highlight the tension between them. But finally, she spoke up. “Shinichi, what do you want? Why are you here?”
Shinichi swallowed hard, then said, “I wanted to ask you something.”
“Then ask,” Ran said quietly, folding her arms. She was feeling a bit defensive.
“I wanted to know…” he started, faltered, then tried again. “Would you tell me?”
Ran’s eyes widened. “Tell you what?”
“…how you feel about me.”
She looked stunned. “W-what?”
“Please. Tell me how you feel,” he repeated. “Even if it’s that you hate me and you never want to see me again, tell me.” He slid one hand up to rub at the back of his neck, a classic gesture that betrayed volumes of nerves.
“I…what…” she started to say something, then closed her eyes and shook her head at him as she yelled, “Stop mocking me! If you don’t feel the same way, just say so!” She turned, as though to flee; as she moved, he saw something sparkling on her eyelashes.
“No, Ran—listen!” he reached out and grabbed her arm to stop her from running away. “Ran, please!” He was actually surprised when she hesitated, and then stopped. But she didn’t turn around to look at him, and he didn’t dare let go of her. He wasn’t going to lose her now. “I don’t think I’m being clear. What I mean is—“
“I told you I forgive you!” she said, her voice hoarse.
“And then you’re avoiding me,” he said flatly. “I’m just trying to figure things out.”
She was silent for a moment before she said, “…you already know how I feel about you. Remember? I told you.”
He was actually surprised to feel himself smile. “No, Ran. You didn’t.”
“What?” she whipped around to look him squarely in the eye. “What are you talking about? Yes, I did! And you have yet to give me any sort of an answer. Which, by the way, is way past due. I told you the night you vanished.”
“No, you didn’t,” he repeated. “You told Conan.”
Now she looked confused. “What? But…you were Conan.”
“Right,” he said gently. “You told Conan how you felt about Shinichi. You never actually told me.”
Comprehension dawned, and her eyes widened. “Oh…”
He loosened his grip on her arm and dropped his hand to take hold of her hand instead. “So…will you tell me?” He had sort of wondered if the reason she was avoiding him so diligently was because of the exchange they’d had that first night he had been Conan, where she had unintentionally told him exactly how she felt about him. Put simply, she was embarrassed.
Ran looked like she was about to answer, but paused and then said, “You tell me first.”
“What, that I love you?” he said easily. After practicing saying those three important little words in front of the mirror for over an hour before coming over here, it damn well better come out with relatively little effort. “I love you. And I’ll tell you as often as you want to hear it.”
“Hope you’re ready to say it a lot,” Ran said, raising an eyebrow. Still, she couldn’t hide her growing smile, and she gave his hand a squeeze. “I love you, too.”
PS. I think that this idea worked out a little bit better in my head. Oh well. Thanks for reading, all! Much love!