DISCLAIMER: The entire Detective Conan series belong to Gosho Aoyama. This is a non-profit fan work.

December 21st

On December 21st, Gin woke up before sunrise. He knew the date thanks only to Vodka's insistence during the last week. 'Only four days left,' 'Remember, the 21st.'

The mission had been scheduled back in November. Exactly at two o'clock they were meeting a politician whose name Gin couldn't manage to remember, yet another Machiavellian man of the many he dealt with on a regular basis. His power and high position set him apart from the rest, though.

Having swallowed a cup of strong, hot tea that burnt his tongue, he walked out of the door.

He walked back in late at night.

His first motion was to reach for the light switch. The yellow light hurt his eyes and made him blink. His stomach growled in protest as he trudged past the kitchen.

The cold sheets rustled, breaking the silence that reigned in the apartment, when he fell onto his bed fully dressed, too tired to even take the heavy, black coat off. He turned the lights off.

On the shortest day of the year, he had seen the sun neither rise, having been driving Westward, nor set, having been hiding indoors.

One year before, he had worked the same number of hours but come home to Sherry waiting for him. Lying next to her on that same bed, he recalled feeling utterly comfortable, content and warm.

He knew the weather had actually been cooler then.