Fandom: Detective Conan
Characters: Kudo Shinichi/Mouri Ran
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: Do you think I’m pretty?
When the phone rang, Ran really contemplated staying where she was—flat on her back on the couch—and not answering it. But if it was a case or something like that, she really needed to answer the call and take a message for her father. Those cases were the reason they got to eat, after all. So she hauled herself to her feet with a sigh and crossed to the desk, where she picked up the phone. “Mouri Detective Agency.”
She felt some of her misery melt away simply from hearing the sound of that voice. “Shinichi!”
“Thought I’d give you a call,” he said. “What’s up? How’re you doing?”
“I’m fine!” she replied with as much cheer as she could muster. “Everything’s just fine!” He always sounded so tired when he called, in spite of his efforts to sound happy—probably for her sake. She just couldn’t bring herself to tell him the entire truth. So she tried to brush off the question.
He was silent a moment before he spoke again. “Okay. I’m going to ask again. This time, be honest. How are you?”
Ran hesitated for a split second, torn between telling him the truth (since he’d proven time and time again that he could see right through her no matter what) and denying that there was anything wrong at all. And that hesitation was to be her undoing. By the time she said, “I’m fine,” he already knew the real answer.
“Ran, what’s wrong?” he asked, a bit more forcefully this time.
“…I’d rather not tell you,” she said, partially defeated.
“Because you won’t like it,” she replied. “Not at all.”
“Won’t know unless you tell me,” he pointed out. “Come on, Ran. What’s up?”
She hesitated again, then sighed.
She was about to open the bathroom stall door and go out to wash her hands when some other girls walked in, chattering. She heard Shinichi’s name, and paused to see what they would say about the long-absent Kudo-kun.
Not too surprisingly, they were discussing the missing detective in a fairly glowing light. They wondered what had become of him and when he was going to come back and (most importantly) his availability upon his return. One girl in particular seemed fairly adamant about the boy.
“But what about Ran-chan?” one of the girls said suddenly. The use of her first name had Ran desperately trying to place the voices—they were probably in her own class if they would refer to her as such. “Isn’t Kudo-kun with her?”
“She swears up and down that they’re not,” another girl pointed out.
A third voice broke in—this one a good deal colder, and definitely not one that Ran recognized. “I wouldn’t worry about it,” this girl said. “Why would he go with her? Not like she’s much of a prize—especially not in the looks department. And she smashes poles with her bare hands. Kudo-kun deserves someone much more ladylike.”
The conversation continued, but Ran didn’t hear any of it. She was too busy trying to breathe and not cry…
By the time she finished recounting this story, Ran felt her eyes starting to burn again. It was humiliating to even think about it, let alone talk about it—to say nothing of the potential ramifications on their relationship…
“…what a bitch,” Shinichi said bluntly.
Ran nearly choked at that. Shinichi wasn’t above swearing, but it was rare that he said things like that. “Now do you see why I didn’t want to say anything?” she said bitterly. Listening to that conversation had hurt—particularly the looks comment. That was a personal attack, and while Ran didn’t necessarily believe herself to be God’s gift to men, she had never thought she was unattractive.
“I hope you don’t believe any of that,” he said.
The question nearly popped out, but she bit it back. Then she thought about it, and decided she had nothing to lose by asking. “Shinichi…I’m going to ask you a question, and I want an honest answer.”
“Sure. Fire away.”
“…do you think I’m pretty?”
The few seconds she had to wait for his reply stretched out into infinity, or so it felt. But finally, he did reply.
PS. …I feel like I’m starting to really suck at this. *sigh* CHEER UP, EMO KID!! *smacks self with a very large mallet* Oh well. I tried a couple of other things after Shinichi’s answer, but nothing seemed to work well. So thus, it ended there. Thanks for reading, all. Much love!