DISCLAIMER: I do not own Detective Conan or any of its characters and concepts! They all belong to Gosho Aoyama.

The right words

Without a single word he stood in front of her, his eyes locked with her expectantly gaze. He knew he couldn't trust his voice, felt how the lump in his throat grew bigger with every passing moment. He felt light-headed – completely empty. Thinking straight was an impossible task.

How was he supposed to explain to her what had happened? He himself wouldn't believe a single word, hadn't he been forced to run around as a grade-schooler during the last year. And even if she could accept the existence of a poison that actually shrunk people – would she forgive him? The loneliness, the tears and the worries he'd caused her– but most of it the betrayal?

Yes – he felt like he had deceived her and himselfas well.
Cheated them of their time together and the many experiences she shared with Conan, but not with him.
Cheated them of all the happy moments they could have enjoyed together.
Cheater them of the trust between them.

He'd wanted to protect her and therefor, he'd lived a lie.
A lie which bonded and separated them at the same time.
In hindsight he wished he had involved her from the start, but hindsight was always twenty-twenty.
It turned out that keeping her out of the loop hadn't held any benefits in the end. His enemy hadn't given a damn if she knew or not. All they'd aimed for had been to hurt him as hard and deep as possible. Even if they didn't get anything out of friendship or love, they were well aware of how they could use these feelings to their advantage.

After all love, friendship, fear and self-sacrifice lay close together.

The outcome had been more than a close call. Losses and blood on each sides. The pictures of this ice-cold night were haunting him and would do so forever. Nonetheless he wished that someday he would be able to just live again – to be happy and unburdened with the past.
To just live.

If he just could – in this crucial moment – find the right words, maybe even with her by his side.

She was the only one who wasn't intimidated by his intelligence, who was there for him since childhood. Such a cheerful, kind-hearted person. She always thought of others first – never of herself. For his well-being she'd feared. Where he was, what he did and time and again the question when he would return to her for good.

He longed to hear her laughter again – to see it. High-spirited and heartwarming – unmuted as it used to be. He wanted to pick up where they had left off.

Everything he had to do, was to open his mouth and to tell her his story with letters, words and sentences.

To tell his story without losing the girl he loved.

He took a deep breath, closed his eyes for a moment, exhaled and looked deep into her eyes…

She waited. She was used to it. She had waited for this moment to come for so long, a minute more or less meant nothing right now. Actually she welcomed the delay for it gave her the opportunity to sort out her own feelings. Did she really want to know what he had to tell her? Where he had been and what had happened to him during his absence?

He was tensed. She could see it clearly. Saw the inner turmoil, the insecurity – fear?

What was there left that would scare him? Though she didn't know any details, she knew that his case, this forever ongoing dangerous case, was finally closed. She herself had been involved more than she would have preferred.

She had known that he would eventually explain everything to her. He had promised it often enough and now the time had finally come.

Did she want to know?

She'd seen who his enemies had been and what these were willing to do and to sacrifice to reach their goals. The boss had even used his own people, his followers as human shields. When everything had been lost for him, he'd just wanted one thing - escape.

So much blood. Blood from murderers, police officers, her own and Shinichi's. She still couldn't refrain from crying when she thought back at this moment. He'd saved her life - protected her without second thoughts. The bullet that had been meant for her - he took it. His life for hers - without hesitation.

Did she want to know?

She'd found her answer.

He looked deep into her eyes "Ran, I..."

"Stop Shinichi! She laid a finger on his lips. "Before you start I want you to know something. No matter what you are going to tell me, it will change nothing. You left me alone. I never knew where you were, what you did or if you would call me again, when you would come back home - back to me. Nonetheless I've waited for you, sometimes thought I've lost my mind when I suspected you to be Conan."

His stomach dropped at her words and he shivered. She would end it before they even had the chance to begin something. Here and now. There was nothing he could do - he couldn't even blame her. She had no clue how close she'd come to see the truth all the time. His shoulders slumped down, his gaze dropped to the floor.

Ran saw the changes in his posture. Instead of insecure he seemed crestfallen and resigned - broken. But she had wanted it this way. She'd wanted that he realized how she had felt and how she'd suffered. He'd understood.

"I've waited for you and during all this time I've had this feeling. This feeling that you were close to me and protected me. That I could count on you no matter what. In this night, you've put everything on the line - just for me." She felt how tears welled up in her eyes - Like so often in the last time. Tears were her constant companion whenever she was alone.

She was done with being alone, she was done with crying.

"Therefore - no matter what you are going to tell me, it will change nothing, absolutely nothing on my feelings for you."

He raised his gaze. Finally she could look into his clear blue eyes again, in which she could lose herself so easily. Her next words had waited for so long to be spoken - to be heard from him.

"I love you."

He stood there overwhelmed, his thoughts raced, no, they froze. Could they do both at once? How long had he pondered over what to say to her, had dumped everything and started anew? And now it was so easy. She'd made it easy and had found them...

...the right words.

A/N: This translation of my german one-shot "Die richtigen Worte" is for Sakura who asked me to do it. I hope you like it *hugs*

This was my first fanfiction ever and I admit ... it's kind of corny. I changed a word or two, oh and if you're confused: The first two parts happen at the same time. His thoughs and her thoughts are simultaneously and then the 'meet up' at the third part.

Thanks for reading,See ya!