Disclaimer: I do not own Death Note, only my original characters and original plot. Anyone actually reads these? I could say awful things right here and no one would probably notice...I won't though, just in case.
Back To You
Chapter One: Batman
"If I fell in love...I'd like for it to hurt." Naomi said with a smile. "Otherwise they wouldn't call it falling, you know? They'd call it cascading or floating gently. It would be a nice word."
"And that, my love, is why you had to put a restraining order out on your last boyfriend." Diana replied smartly, knowing full well, that that would never happen to her. "That's why he is in jail right now."
Everything he did infuriated her. Even as he refused to look at her now, it did nothing but add fuel to her fire.
In truth, he was helping her really, because she knew if he softened only a touch—gave her that wonderfully sweet smile of his—she'd forgive him all over again. Diana would drape her arms around his shoulders as he worked, watching as he watched over some unsuspecting criminal, mumbling to himself. And she'd love it. Oh, she'd live for it. She does…every time.
Diana, on the other hand, always found her friends so stupid when they did this for guys—allowed them to take advantage of their kindness. She'd break her brains onto the walls trying to get some self-esteem into their minds. Hell, she'd tell them how utterly worthless the guy was. She'd berate them down to their untied shoes and mismatching clothes. She'd take a sledgehammer to their shapeless bodies, and grungy hair. "He has money, Naomi! Why is he dressing like a bum? Hmph? Why? Because he doesn't care about you—that's why."
That's what she said. That's what she always said. But, they didn't know she was a hypocrite. They would know if they flew to Japan and found her here, screaming at a guy who wasn't even her boyfriend. Diana could see the headlines: Diana Belle Spotted Screaming at a Seemingly Homeless Gentleman in Jeans and a White T-Shirt About Her Unrequited Love for Him. See more on page 6.
She could count on one hand the amount of times they had kissed in the last three years. She could count on three hands the amount of relationships she had sabotaged because he'd creep out of nowhere and distract her again, him and his weird sugar fetish. She could be in Miami, Hollywood, Tokyo, Milan, Paris, London or Atlanta. It didn't matter—he could be just as many places as she could. He'd find her. And she'd resist at first, she would, then he'd work her like any other case. He'd work her and then she'd crack like Naomi after she found out her boyfriend had been stalking her. She'd give in like a parent at a candy shop with a child, too cute to refuse, pestering them.
It would amaze most people how many guys she'd ignore, because he even seemed the least bit jealous. Because she never wanted him to be uncomfortable. She never wanted to ward him away before he was able to make up his mind. And how many months had she waited for that to happen? Laughable.
Before she met L, she never did this. She never made exceptions, but she told herself:
He's not like everyone else.
He doesn't know what he's doing.
He's this…He's that…and, most importantly, he's L.
He's L. That had been the biggest excuse. He's L. He's L. He's—
She replayed the excuses in her mind and wanted to flinch away from them—they made her physically bat away the memories until they hid in the shadows of her mind. They embarrassed her so much she wanted to pretend she'd pulled them from a different person—another life.
"You are the most selfish, manipulative human being I have ever met," she said wringing her hands. "I hate that I ever met you, I hate that you ever helped me…I…I…I hate that you even exist! I HATE YOU."
L's sighs came from deep within, made deeper—she imagined—by his strangely endearing posture. She found most things he did endearing and that made her sick to her stomach. "You don't mean that." He said without inflection, staring at the TV screens before him. She had no doubt, they had his full attention. She was lucky he even gave her 1% of it. "You're just angry."
Just angry? She laughed incredulously. If only that were true. If only…
/ Two and Half Years Earlier\\\
Diana's eyes swept over the room. It was normal for the Waldorf Astoria. Everything in the room was ornate, glittering, trimmed with gold and decorated with red velvet. The large window, with crisscrossing gold covering glass was spot less, revealing the storming night beyond. Rain enveloped the city, making the lights below appear even brighter than normal, reds, greens and yellows sprung back at her and she couldn't help but sigh. It brought her absolute peace. The rush, the excitement in her heart stilled to a lull. Slowly, she tore her eyes away and turned in the direction of the figure perched on the gold patterned couch.
Directly in front of him a spread of desserts were laid out, ranging from cakes to tea and cookies. The figure watched her from beneath a curtain of hair, his dilated eyes bulging out at her. He was almost sickly pale with the darkest rings she had ever seen beneath his eyes. He held his thumb against his mouth as he watched her silently. Her lips parted as if to speak but no sound escaped them. Diana finally noticed that he was actually crouching, his back curving over his knees that were pulled close to his chest. His feet, much like the claws of a bird, acted like an anchor keeping him steady. He wore jeans and a white long-sleeved t-shirt…certainty not what she expected. But his gaze was so haunting, so absolute, she couldn't find it in herself to speak.
"It's a pleasure to meet you, Miss Belle," the man said, "even if that isn't your real name."
Outraged, Diana's manager, Logan Tracey, took a step forward, "And exactly who are you supposed to be?" Logan spat, coming dangerously close to the strange man who didn't so much as glance at him. His odd eyes didn't move from Diana. He seemed almost…shy. Was that it? Either way, she returned his gaze with a smile, waving at him slightly with her fingers. He only rubbed his bare feet together. "Where is L? He promised to see her! Where is he?"
Logan reached for the strange man, but as he did, a cloaked figure reached out to restrain him stepping out of nowhere like he'd been there the whole time.
"I suggest you take a step back, Mr. Tracey," this new figure said, something about the reserve and directness of his tone instantly reminded Diana of Alfred, Batman's one and only caretaker and friend. "The detective L will be out shortly. He is waiting by that door there," the man gestured with the hand that didn't hold Logan, several feet away, at the other end of the room, double doors stood, undoubtedly leading into a bedroom. "He agreed to meet with Miss Belle and Miss Belle alone. You understand that with the nature of his work, his true identity cannot be revealed, lest it risks his anonymity."
Logan's nostrils flared, "How could you even ask that? How do I even know I can trust you with her? Who'll protect her?"
"There are several policemen stationed throughout this hotel. I assure you," the man said gently, "Miss Belle is safe."
Logan's shoulders slumped and he turned back to look at Diana who'd hand her arms crossed, all of the fear drained from her face.
"I'll see you as soon as I'm done." Diana replied, "L's risking a lot just agreeing to see me. The least we can do is this."
He covered his face with his hand, cutting her off from the large brown eyes of his, childlike, in comparison with his large athletic build. "But your life is already at stake. He hasn't had anyone attempt to murder him in the last couple of days. He risks nothing!"
Diana closed her eyes, fighting with him was draining, especially when she already felt like falling down. "Logan, please. I'll fill you in later."
"Die." He urged, his eyes pleading, begging, a large crease appearing between his dark brow, somehow only adding to his face and his rich brown skin, several shades darker than her caramel color.
"Lo," she replied with a smile, shortening his name as he did hers."I'll be fine," she took a step toward him and cupped his right cheek, he leaned into her palm and she immediately wanted to pull back, suddenly afraid of the strange look he was giving her. "I promise."
After a moment, she dropped her hand and stepped back. She gave him a dizzying smile—the celebrity smile—she called it. It was a smile she wore to hide what was within, the fear. She hadn't used it since she was little, she never had to anymore. Diana was successful, internationally loved and known. This was the first incident, since her climb to the top, that she'd been upset about anything. Life in the limelight was hard but it was not more than what she'd signed up for. Her father had been a famous jazz musician and her mother a surgeon. She understood what it felt like to be watched, loved, hated even, but never to this extent. Never.
Logan's eyes softened immediately, swimming with that look that made Diana uncomfortable to be in the same room with him. "I'll be outside."
She nodded and watched him as he was directed out of the maze-like suite.
"Miss Belle," the man said again, stealing her attention once again.
"How well do you know Mr. Tracey? He has been your manager since you were fifteen, right?" he said this all matter-of-factly, like he didn't even need for her to answer.
"You've done your homework," Diana said, and quickly replied, "That's right. I know him pretty well."
"Huh," he dropped his gaze now, reaching for a cup of tea only to drop four sugar cups in it and stirring it slowly. With a smile, she took a step forward, "If you don't mind, Miss Belle." This man said, "I'd appreciate it if you stayed there."
She didn't attempt to hide her shock at his request, "Why?" and then she looked over him again, the pallor of his skin, "do you get sick easily?"
"Not more than anyone else I suppose," he responded, slurping down his tea in a manner that Diana found to be loud and disturbing. "But that's not why I asked you to stay there. Watari?"
The man from the shadows, stepped toward her suddenly, his hands raised as if to show her he meant no harm. "Could I take your jacket, Miss Belle?"
"Of course," she shrugged it off and folded it for him, her left eye brow still quirked in question. "What now?"
"Now," the man with the dilated eyes asked, "we remove the recording, Mr. Tracey slipped into your pocket."
"What?" she couldn't help but narrow her eyes, as she watched the man called Watari, unfold her jacket and rip something away from the coat that had been sewed into the outside of the pocket. Diana's breath caught in her throat, she couldn't breathe, couldn't move as Watari walked away with the tiny piece of machinery and disappeared into a doorway.
It unfolded before her eyes like a scene in a movie—every move plotted and laid out in minutes. It was strange that in reality it only took seconds to begin and end.
"Well," the guy said, "I misspoke. Slipping implied it wasn't planned nearly as far in advance as it was. No. Even something as small as this took some effort to plan…"
He trailed off, seeming to forget Diana was even there as he devoured a strawberry piece of cake in two bites. Diana grimaced as he continued to talk with his mouth full. "I'd even wager…no. I'd say that he did this as far as two weeks ago. Being a rather close manager, judging by the way he looks at you, he has had ample access to your wardrobe. He's probably even having you followed."
Through all this, Diana said nothing, barely registering his words. Logan?
"But rest assured, Miss Belle. This, by no means, makes him our culprit. It does however, make him more of a suspect. Tell me, how long has he had these affections for you?"
"I…" Diana dropped her arms, and thought about running from the room. This man was L. There's no doubt. It was odd that he wasn't trying to hide that fact from her. "I don't know. I didn't notice until just recently, until the attacks started."
"Naturally," L muttered nonchalantly under his breath.
"What?" What the hell was that supposed to mean?
He didn't answer, only proceeded to reach for another piece of strawberry cake, gobbling up. She gagged a little as she watched him.
With her eyes narrowed, she asked again. Still she received no answer. Finally, after he devoured yet another piece of cake she wrung her hands and marched over to the couch. Diana took the seat beside him and he instantly stiffened, as if being this close to another human being was not something he ever wanted to experience….EVER.
"It's L, right?" she asked nicely, "Can you explain any of this to me?"
"I could," he said, turning slightly as if to put more distance between them, "But it wouldn't help any."
She felt the anger building in her chest, but she fought it with everything she was, her words came out as sweet as she could make them,"And why is that?"
"Uh, L," Watari had somehow slipped into the room, "Perhaps we should make Miss Belle feel more comfortable—"
"Before we start calling her an idiot?" Diana said evenly, rising to her feet, "I understand a lot of things, L. I get that you're a genius. I do. I get that when it comes to the mind, you are my superior. I also get that you took the time out of your day to help me—to give me protection. And I thank you for it," she reached toward him and clasped his shoulder, making him stiffen again, "But I won't be treated like a child. If you have something to say…I suggest you say it. Believe me when I say I am more than capable of handling even the most elementary of concepts. For example," she began in a sarcastic voice, "It took me a while but I finally figured out what the word suspect meant and it only took me…five minutes. New record."
If he found her sarcasm annoying he made no move to address it. He just stared, unblinkingly.
"I wasn't with-holding information because I figured you were incapable of understanding it," L replied looking up at her with those doey eyes of his, "I only assumed you wouldn't believe me…or would at least call me a liar. Strangely, it's a common human reaction to rebel against something that doesn't fit with your view of the world."
Diana laughed, suddenly feeling silly. "That makes sense."
He peered at her, the thumb at his lip again, looking like a child and a man all at once. A combination that made her feel safer than she'd felt for a while. How fascinating he was. Maybe it was because her nerves were shot. Maybe being chased around her apartment by a stalker had somehow left her open and impressionable. She didn't question it further. She removed her hand, and pulled her knees up under her.
"So…" L said lowly, "do you believe me?"
She gave him a strange look, "Of course I do. You don't exactly look like a liar."
"I assure you," He replied, sucking on his fingers. "a lot of people don't particularly look like liars. I know…I've arrested quite a few of them."
She laughed again, her shoulder brushing his as she did.
"Hey," she said, her voice going softer, "Why did you agree to meet me in person? You've never shown your face before…so why now?"
"I'm a fan," He said dryly, but it didn't seem sarcastic. It was like he was stating an irrevocable fact. He did that a lot, she noticed. "I saw you when you performed at Wammy's House in Winchester, England."
"Winchester! Oh, loved Winchester! The kids were adorable, these three in particular were my favorite…"
L didn't interrupt her as she babbled, only watched her with his finger pressed to his lip.
"…the little boy with white hair couldn't even look at me. The ginger haired boy, Mello, wouldn't let go of me…he and this cute one named Matt."
"You must like children."
"I do," she admitted, pulling a wild black-brown hair behind her ear, "Anyway…back to business," she turned her body so she was facing him. Her hands were still shaking from shock, but she was pretty good at distracting herself. "Amaze me, Mr. Wayne."
He looked at her with those eyes again and she leaned forward, embracing this pull she felt. This gravity, knowing full well that it was a really bad idea. "What is it? Have you never heard of Batman?
"Of course I've heard of it," L responded rubbing his feet together, it was like they were sentient, existed separate from him. "I've…just never been compared."
"It's a compliment," she said with a smile, "I love Batman."
Author's Note: I will finish my other stories. I just re-watched Death Note and got this idea. Don't hate me! Almost done with my latest How I Met Your Father chapter. If anyone is interested in seeing this story unfold, let me know by leaving a review or follow or whatever. But, I swear, I will finish How I Met Your Father by the end of this year. I promise.