Disclaimer: I do not own Death Note, only my Original Plot and characters. Any similarities to any real-life people or events are purely coincidence.

Also, thank you Minerva Andromeda for the first review! I was so excited to see it so soon! Thank you so much!

Chapter 2: Unreasonable

"Diana isn't conceited." Kat said.

"Aw, Thanks Kat." Diana smiled at her.

"she just automatically assumes people like her which, when you think about it, is better than assuming everyone just hates you." Kat finished with a flourish.

Diana pulled back at that, "Um…"

Naomi scrunched her face up, "Yeah…Yeah! I think I'll try that too—"

"But," Kat started, "Just don't try it with guys, we don't want a repeat of what happened with Michael Moore."

"Ah, Michael Moore." Naomi sighed, "I hate that he blocked my number."

Two And a Half Years Earlier

Diana knew one thing for sure after being around L for more than an hour.

He was no Batman.

"Miss Belle," L had Watari cart in a long tray of freshly baked sweets and the older gentleman began picking up the discarded wrappers and cleaned plates from the last desserts. "Would you like some? I'll share."

She wasn't particularly hungry, or maybe she was—she couldn't be sure, but the assorted fruit looked pretty good. The blueberries, in particular, made her mouth water, and the Great Detective was choosing to ignore them, his skeleton like hands darting in and out of the tray with the quickness of a cat. But, watching him pinch and play with his food before he ate it—rather greedily—was as appealing as watching someone draw blood or yank out a rotting tooth. "No…I think, I'm okay."

"Hmph. So…" he pinched a rectangular piece of cantaloupe between his fingers, before he dropped it into his mouth. "Miss Belle," he swallowed, "I know for certain that you've already recounted your story to the police, and I realize it may be difficult for you, but I'd like for you to tell me exactly what happened, however you remember it. Please try to be as thorough as possible. It will be a great help to the investigation."

"Of course," she answered, watching as Watari poured her a hot cup of tea and handed it to her along with a blanket. "Thank you, Mr. Watari."

"You're welcome, Miss Belle." He responded warmly.

Diana rather liked his face, grandfather like, bushy mustache and white hair. His voice was deep, but not monotone like L's. It was easy to judge by Watari's voice if he was pleased. L on the other hand…they had been speaking for an hour now and she still knew absolutely nothing about him. That was probably the idea though, considering how quickly they deceived her manager and shoved him from the room. She didn't blame them though, she wouldn't want Logan in the room either if she could help it. He had a habit of asserting himself to the point of bullying his audience. She was the exception, usually, anyway.

Pulling the soft, fleece lined blanket tighter, she took a deep breath. "I guess I should start from the beginning…"

()()()Two days Earlier()()()

Naomi's loud sob makes Diana's eyes break from the TV. She's crying…again. Not that Diana could ever fully focus on the television anyway, Naomi made it difficult.

"I—I m-mean h-he s-said…he s-said," Naomi liked to hiccup when she cried, her voice shaking, if they weren't on two different sides of the United States, Diana would be rubbing her back in a clockwise motion just to get her to calm down. "He said he loved me!"

Her voice cut off with a scream, and Diana had to hold the phone away from her ear even though it was on speaker. She could hear the girl practically choking on her own tears. This happened all the time. The two of them grew up together and Naomi has been breaking up and losing her mind since she turned thirteen. If Naomi wasn't screaming her head off about some weirdo, she wasn't living. Some people liked the drama. They liked the thrill of the pain.

Diana had her own problems, but this one, she had very little experience with. "I know, sweetie, I know."

"I loved him!" Naomi blew her nose so loudly, it seemed to have scared her dog Charlie Tutu (coincidentally, that was the name of her childhood crush and yes, his last name was Tutu). Charlie Tutu started barking rabidly, undoubtedly thinking there was some threat to the owner. Diana thought he'd be used to it by now.

"I know…I know…" Diana cooed from the other end, her eyes reading the subtitles on the flat screen television.

Gigi Devereaux star of the hit show, "Burn," was recently hospitalized after an intruder broke into her home….

"He said he loved me, Diana! He said it f-first," she broke off again, blowing her nose.

Apparently, the actress had received several threatening phone calls before incident, but none of the local police had taken it seriously…New York Chief of Police released a statement earlier this morning apologizing for the grave lapse in judgement.

"Was he lying?" Naomi managed to ask.

"Yes, sweetie, he was lying." Diana said softly, glancing down at her phone to spam Kat's phone. Why did no one else pick up when the girl called? Naomi and Kat were at least in the same time zones. What a traitor. Diana always had to do the legwork.

Having previously investigated claims by the actress that proved to be false, they were hesitant to devote the man power…

"But we didn't even have sex!" she screamed, "Yeah, I might have gone down on him, but…I still didn't give it up…not really. It was only one time…or t-two. I don't count the other time, I barely felt that one..."

"Mhm-hm." Between letting Kat have it, listening to Naomi, and reading the screen she felt pretty proud of herself for multi-tasking.

Authorities report that no one was seriously hurt, but the star is severely shaken. Her representatives ask for privacy and prayers going forward.

Diana had never been friends with the actress, in fact, she knew for a fact that Gigi hated her. Still, "That's terrible."

"That's what I've been saying!" Naomi screamed, and Diana glanced down at the letter she had found amongst her pile of pre-approved fan mail. She'd gotten this one today.

It was no more than a little message on crisp cardstock. Someone had gone through several magazines to craft the sentence, each letter either eclipsing or shrinking in comparison to the next letter. It was like it was drawn from some badly written movie:

"I love you, Diana. I'm the only one that loves you."

It dripped with crazy.

She'd ignored the first one. But…now it was starting to feel creepy. It's not like anyone could reach her though, she couldn't leave the room without all eyes on her, Klein, her current head of security made sure of that.

"It'll be fine," she said, more to herself than to Naomi, but the girl still responded with a wail. Diana caught herself, "Oh, don't do that Naomi, put those keys down! Now! I'm not joking with you! Put them down or lose my number—yes, I mean it."

Tough love, Diana thought, she just needs some tough love…

The next day, after having finished shooting for GQ's June cover, she entered the hotel she was staying at through the parking garage. Through there, she could use her room key to take her directly to her penthouse suite—a room she aptly titled The Apartment. It wasn't particularly large, housing only three bedrooms, a kitchen, dining area, and living room with a television and all necessary amenities. It had its own terrace to overlook the city which was dotted with flowers and potted trees. It was quaint, cute, and whenever she was in Manhattan, she picked this place. Sure, she could have stayed elsewhere—anywhere, but she like this hotel because it worked around her whims and schedule. If she called ahead, they had her room vacant and waiting. She took precedence. In fact…this hotel was the entire reason she and Gigi even had a problem. As she used her key card on the elevator, thinking back to the news, she felt a pang of regret bite inside her stomach.

It didn't matter in the grand scheme of things, but…still.

Four members of Diana's security stepped out with her, four others took the stairs and five more were positioned at various points throughout the hotel. Logan Tracey, her manager, had begged her to take extra precautions when she traveled to New York. He would be coming to New York as well, but would be delayed by a few days. Her personal assistant, Brittania, suffered a similar fate. She was just getting over the flu and it would be irresponsible for Diana to let her even move from her bed.

But, regardless, she did as she was asked. She kept to herself, kept as low a profile as she could manage. She didn't attract attention, kept her head low and avoided all cameras. Klein had instructed all security personnel to treat every uninvited approach to Diana as a threat on her life….

That was a little overkill, but Klein was like that. He had worked in the FBI briefly before working for her. For him, every day was showtime. All the lights, all the flashes, all the people in the world couldn't stop him from his job. He'd actually said that to her once, and she had laughed, thinking it was a joke. But the man didn't blink. He was only twenty-nine, ten years her senior, but there he was. He didn't freeze. He didn't blink. He didn't hesitate. That's one reason why she liked him so much. She could relate to that feeling. When she felt something strong enough, she didn't hesitate, damn the consequences. Come to think of it, that was probably why she and Naomi were such good friends. They dived in, the first to say, "Fuck it."

Diana bit her lip, she took this approach to most of the guys she dated, not that there were very many. But, you know the media, they made everything into a big deal.

It had worked in Diana's favor so far, but…life had a way of screwing you over. At least, that's what her father had said in almost all of his songs.

Klein had recently taken leave to witness the birth of his son. He had been reluctant to leave her in light of the 'love notes' she had been getting, but these things were common. Diana and Klein both knew that she had been getting little things like this since her debut. Only, what worried him was that this was the first time that one her little 'notes' had gotten pass inspection. He had all of her fan mail searched thoroughly, if he found something dangerous, he hardly told her what it was. She'd like to try to guess, and he'd ignore her. Klein was like a big brother in that way, always trying to do what he thought best for her.

And, like a good sister, she was doing what she thought best for him. "Don't let you wife divorce you," she said, "Be next to her when your little boy is born and send me pictures."

He sheepishly agreed, leaving Dorne in charge instead. She liked Dorne, but…he was colder than Klein, he didn't always keep her updated on the goings on. But, he and Logan knew each other before he came to work for her. She knew he was trustworthy.

Adams and Wilt stood guard outside her door as she entered her suite. Dorne would be set up in another room somewhere…Klein would have told her, but Dorne was harder to talk to. She avoided it when she could. She'd be glad when she got Klein back.

She called for room service and collapsed on the couch, not bothering to slip into something more comfortable, if she knew Logan, he'd be showing up soon and she liked to have all of her clothes on when he was present. He was not going to catch her in her pajamas today. He got too personal then, calling her beautiful more than what was necessary. Being used to something didn't make it any less disturbing.

As the hours dragged by, she texted Naomi, refusing to take her calls just then. She and Kat were still arguing over who would do the babysitting once Diana got back. Kat had some excuse about her internship, but the girl only worked three days a week. She had time.

Finally, after too long, she decided to go into her room to watch TV. Sure, there was a television in the living area, but she liked to lay back on her pillows and listen to the TV rather than watch it. Besides, she liked the idea of making Logan wait outside while she took her time.

She rolled her eyes as she collapsed on the bed, staring at the ceiling. If she had to be vindictive, there was a problem. Torelei was right, after the year was up, she'd have to let him go. That was all there was to it. I might start to hate him if I don't.

Was that cruel? They had known each other for so long, and he did work hard for her. He didn't even work for anyone else—said he didn't need or want to. She was his superstar…his only star….

She'd fallen asleep fully dressed, her lips almost kissing her remote control. She didn't remember closing her eyes, but…did anyone ever?

Diana rubbed the sleep from her eyes before she twisted around and stretched her arms high toward the ceiling. Her lacey shirt rose with her exposing her midriff to the ice in the air. She immediately jerked her arms back down and blew hot air into her hands. For a moment, she thought she'd see smoke from her breath waft around. She blew again. Did she turn up the thermostat? It was like a freezer.

It was black too, the only light just barely peeped through the curtains. Shivering, she sniffled, and tried to peer out onto the balcony just to see if she was seeing the sun or if the lights from the outside were the source. The long curtains were drawn, covering even the simple translucent fabric beneath. Only a sliver of light peeped through, it was enough for her to see the edge of the bed. She noticed then that she couldn't hear the TV. It must have shut off automatically like the lights.

It was so quiet…the only noise came from the obnoxious sound of the air conditioner. Which reminded her that she was trembling with cold.

God, I need a hot shower. I just need to run in there and get it done. Once she had the water running everything would be over, she'd be warm and then she'd have the courage to find the thermometer and shut it down. She would've just sunk into her sheets if they weren't icy to the touch.

"Urgh, I don't want to get up," she whined.

Hyping herself up, Let's do this, Diana, we can do this, she rolled off the bed and ran for the ensuite bathroom. Her hands found the chilled knob and she gave it a twist.


"Fuck." She let her head hit the door, How the hell did I do that? It's fine, there's more than one bathroom in this—

She turned her head to her left. Just under the loud blarring of the air conditioner she thought she had heard a sniffle.

Diana stopped breathing, thoughts racing. She didn't move.

If she felt along this wall she'd run right into the doors out of the room. Where's my phone? Where's my…couch. It's on the couch…in the other room. Just walk calmly, I didn't actually hear a sniffle. Even if I did, just breathe…walk out of the room. Walk out of the room…I didn't hear a damn thing…

She did just that, moving slow until she movement behind her.


Scrambling against the wall, she heard a crash against the mattress, and she threw herself against the door just as she heard feet hit the wood floor.

Her momentum sent her into the opposing wall, but she ran straight into the sitting room towards her phone. Footsteps pounded behind her as she almost slipped on the floors glossy finish. She grabbed a lamp to her right and threw it at the whoever was chasing her. It missed by a mile, but she didn't stop there. She dived around the couch and snatched up her cellphone, her side hitting the coffee table hard. She waited until he'd started to dive at her before she moved, so in the brief moment she sat there, she watched the black masked intruder's eyes widen: icy blue. The intruder was rather slim, but she didn't put it past whoever the fuck it was to be a killer. She assumed automatically it was a man, just by the way he lumbered toward her as she rolled to her feet and knocked a side table in his path.

"Shit!" he cursed loudly, as she randomly threw this and that. She wasn't thinking. She just moved. If she paused to think, he'd get her, she knew that. The weird thing was, only when she thought back to this moment, he didn't seem that invested in the chase. He was trying but…not really. If he was smart, he would have gone for the cellphone first. So when she flipped it open and hit the number five button, she knew the game was almost over, if it wasn't already. Dorne would know. He would come.

Still she didn't stop, she ran straight for the exit, yanking down another useless side table and chucking it at him. Diana heard that one connect.


And this was her stalker?

Her fingers pulled at the door. It's locked, it's locked, she stumbled with the lock, pulling it open just as the man slammed into her. He took her breath away and she flailed for air. He grabbed at her shirt, pulling hard and then out of the blue he let go and the two of them fell backwards. She landed on his chest, the back of her head smacking with a crack against his nose. She'd have a bump, but she'd live.

She scrambled to her feet heading straight toward the double doors. She thought she'd see her guards, but the hall was deserted. She pressed the elevator button, but waiting would be suicide. Instead she ran straight for the stairs, taking them two at a time until she made it down to an actual floor. She should have stopped at someone's room and kept banging until someone knocked on a door. She kept going, until she went straight into the lobby. Her mind was flying before her, she was aware of nothing. She was just looking for an L. That's all her eyes searched for. L.

L. L. L. L. L.

Yes, she reached the lobby floor, opened the door and stumbled face first into a hard body.

Her first instinct was to knee whoever it was hard in the groin.

So, she did, and took off until she was out in the open and she could see the a few of the front desk clerks turn their head to see her. A woman with a tight bun sprang to her feet, meeting Diana as she ran forward. "Call the p-police." She stammered, looking back just to see her manager Logan Tracey pick himself off the ground, legs twitching, eyes watering.

In truth, she felt no remorse. He ran upon her. That's what he got.

"Call the police," she ordered again, getting a muffled reply from the woman as Diana's brain finally dropped its survival mode. Breathing hard, she managed to bring herself over to him, cup his face. At last, she managed to get herself to stop from seeing red.

"Die…are you alright? Where's your security?"

"My…" she frowned, glancing around the hotel. Eyes were all on her now, but…she hadn't ran into a single soul as she escaped from the penthouse. People with bags, people with phones. People with cameras.

The lights started to flash, the gasps came back to her like someone had just hit a gong. She hid her face into his jacket, and he called for hotel security while they waited for the police to arrive. He words too her went on deaf ears. She could only hear the pounding of her own heart.

Later, after the ordeal was through, she'd find out that the intruder had died of a heart attack. That explained why he had suddenly let go. The whole mess hit the media at the crack of dawn.

The police were then stationed at her new room, questioning her every hour on the hour, and she received a mysterious email in the moments that followed from her best friend Naomi. The police, save for the chief himself, had been hesitant for her to even see it, but he overruled the rest easily enough. Naomi, of course, hadn't sent the email.

How he managed to get a hold of the email address was beyond her. How he managed to get it to her without any snooping was even more impressive. What wasn't impressive is that as soon as she read the email on her laptop, she was instructed to destroy it. But that hardly mattered, she could have a million laptops. She had only one life.

Once she was put through a safe connection, she was able to find out one thing.

The email had, in fact, come from the great detective himself.

"Diana Bellamy Ellington De Bussey, professionally known as Diana Belle, it is a pleasure to meet you. I…am L."


Diana found herself shaking, only minutely. She stared down at her right hand, tightening the muscles as if to stop the jumpy movements. It helped a little, but not really.

"That's it…" she said after getting no response from the detective. "Logan led me out and then the police arrived…."

Blinking the heat behind her eyes away, she focused her attention on the detective. He watched her as she spoke, his hooded eyes never moving from her face. All the while, he bit down on his thumb nail on one hand, while the other hand clutched his knee. She had a tutor who stood kind of like that—birdlike. Dr. Mentley…he was eccentric too, often dying his grey hair red and pausing only naturally enough to have a large role in a soap opera.

It was almost jarring, being stared at like that, especially because he didn't bother to blink at all during this time. "Um…L?"

"Yes?" L found it no trouble to speak with that thumb nail against his lips.

"Is everything…okay?"

He tilted his head, now, eyes so intense the look was almost comical. If he wasn't a batman, he was certainly a birdman. "Yes. Why do you ask?"

Diana felt her lips turn up, only slightly in a smile. "You haven't blinked."

The thumb slipped, and finally, he did in fact blink, it was like turning on a computer after it had been put to sleep.

Diana leaned toward him, there was that stiffness again. It was like his entire body was a muscle, and she had just dropped three hundred pounds on his shoulders. "I can't tell if you're looking at me or through me."

"Does that bother you?" L asked randomly, his tone light, curious, now throwing in a few normal blinks, probably just to show he could blink.

She giggled, and almost couldn't believe it was happening. Was this real? How come she hadn't questioned it before? Was this odd human being the great L? "No. I'm used to being watched, hazard of the profession. Still, it can be a bit creepy if not unsettling."

"I see, and do you find the way I'm looking at you now creepy or unsettling?" Again, his tone held no accusation, only curious like he was asking her to explain why she liked a particular pair of shoes.

"Not at all, you're so focused…it's more intimidating than creepy. It's almost like you're challenging me right now, to see if I'll break." She said, dropping her eyes from his to stare at whole face instead. She guessed that meant she did break. Still, despite being a sugar addict, by the looks of him, his skin was absolutely without flaw. Smooth and he didn't seem to care. She doubted he concerned himself with such things. His face was symmetrical too, as if he had been carved from stone. In the right light, he'd almost be handsome. But…in all fairness, she also hadn't slept in a while. "But I bet you get that a lot."

"Not really," He murmured. "You're the first person who's ever said that to me."

Was that a bad thing? "I'm sure your friends tell you all the time."

"No. I don't really have friends."

That threw up a big wall for her right there, all this momentum and boom! And he said it so casually, so without any emotion behind it. It was empty, a fact, something you could grab from an encyclopedia or a 'Things You Didn't Know About' blogpage.

"Does that disturb you, Miss Belle?"

Her face must have told it all, she was much too tired to hide her expressions well, or he was much too skilled not to notice. "It doesn't disturb me…it's just surprising."

"Hm," he didn't have her elaborate any further, that thumb returning to his mouth. At a moment's notice, he had reached forward to grab a slice of cake from the table, wasting no time to cut a piece with his fork and bring it into his mouth.

"I have a theory; however, I believe nothing short of surveillance would reveal its legitimacy. If my deduction is true, the suspect will strike again. I imagine he's probably biding his time now, waiting for the storm to blow over. If he has any common sense, he'll give it a week—two before making even a small move…" The detective, stared at his next forkful of cake, raising it high, examining it. "It'll be subtle, a move meant to isolate you—"

So, he was speaking to her, Diana couldn't tell at first. It was like he was all alone, stranded in his own mind.

"You won't be, but he won't know that. Judging by what you've just told me, he thinks he cares for you a great deal, moreso than even your friends…. He doesn't believe you're capable of making your own decisions. He's your caretaker, your guardian, your perfect companion. You don't need anyone else, you won't as long as he's with you. This incident is all a show—an act to prove how much you really need him. It was a ploy. These attacks won't stop until he's proven his point. I don't believe you are in any immediate danger, but as long as you refuse him, his anger will collect until it explodes. Killing you would be his next objective, if endearing himself to you fails. But he won't have the chance to do that. Naturally, you would be placed in protective custody. You would be able to go about your normal life—as much as is feasible—while our agents shadow you." He took one barefoot and rubbed it against the other, starting on a fresh piece of cake. "He's going to expect your security to increase—your stalker—it would be suspicious if it didn't…" trailing off, he began to chew. "Judging by how easily this 'stalker' of yours reached you, it's obvious it's an inside job. As I said, he'll wait until he has his chance to strike. We could point the finger now, of course, but what would that solve? No. We have to catch him in the act to assuage all doubt…that's the only way to do it." He pulled his cake off his fork and kept it in his mouth awhile, tilting his head to the right.

Diana blinked, holding her breath.

"This arrangement will last only as long as your real stalker is at large. Is that something you would be opposed to, Miss Belle?" L asked, pulling the fork away only to stick it back into his cake.

"You're…" she shook her head, eyes trying to search his face for a sign of trickery, anything at all. "You're L. You're him."

His eyes lifted, his lips just barely giving her a hint of a smile. "I thought we established that."

She nodded eagerly, "We…" she couldn't get the words together, "we did, definitely, but…How? How do you do that?"

He peered at her now, in question, she assumed. And she shuffled closer, her eyes sweeping over him. "You're amazing. Do you know that?"

L considered this, eating his cake, eyes slightly wider, "I can't see what you find so impressive, it was a rather simplistic deduction—certainly nothing complicated. I haven't even revealed how we plan to execute all of this."

Her head lulled to the side, she rested it on the couch, pulling her legs in towards her chest. "So… you're saying you do know how impressive you are?"

He wavered before her eyes, or maybe she was the wavering? She felt a yawn coming on.

L's words came back to her as if spoken from one end of a tunnel. "When you put it that way…I guess you'd be right."

She managed to laugh as she fought the sleepiness in her eyes. If she didn't know any better, she'd say that he'd come super close to her, or…or…

"Watari? Please escort Miss Belle to her room. It's obvious she's much too tired to stay awake any longer. We'll have to pick this back up in the morning." L said, "It's surprising she's managed it this long especially since she hasn't slept since the incident."

How did he know that? I didn't tell anyone…did I?

She forced a hard blink, and began stretching, "I'm fine. I just need…a second. I can have someone drive me home…"

"That won't be necessary, Miss Belle. When I asked you if you'd object to being in protective custody, I asked you that so that we could begin immediately. Your manager, Mr. Tracey, has already been escorted off the premises…and we have your room set up for you with all of your essentials."


"Miss Belle…"

His voice drifted away from her, and finally, she was able to sleep.

When Diana awoke, she was in a hotel room. She'd slept in enough of them to know right away. Vaguely, she could remember what had just transpired mere hours ago, but she knew enough to know what was happening here.

She was in protective custody and the great detective L was in charge of the investigation. That was it. It was a fact. Why exactly it was a fact? She didn't have all her faculties together to question it last night. But, as soon as she was able, she'd have to ask why. The way he had explained it, the case was rather simple—cut and dry. Or maybe it was only simple to him, a genius of godlike proportions?

She laughed, either way, she felt she needed to ask. Surely, he's got better things to do than to look after a popstar…

Diana frowned, Would that make me seem ungrateful? I am grateful, of course, I am, but…it's a fair question, right? Anyone would want to know in her situation. Exactly what are the odds though? How many celebrities can claim the same? Celebrities have been stalked and threatened way before Diana. In fact, she had a few friends in the business dealing with the same at this very moment. Gigi Devereaux was a prime example So why her?

Did it matter? She was safe. He'd solve the problem. Things would return to normal. That's all. Maybe she would hold off…just for now, she wouldn't want to offend him, besides, he did say he was a fan, didn't he?

Didn't she perform at the White House because the President's daughters were fans of hers? It was the same thing.

She lifted her hand up raising it high as light from the windows filtered into the room. She wasn't shaking anymore. I shouldn't ruin it by panicking—by being paranoid. But not being careful is what got her into this mess to begin with…what now?

Turning over on her right, she reached over to turn on the lamp. As she reached over, she was able to notice a small blinking light on the sidetable. Once she flicked on the lamplight, it illuminated a small silver laptop with a blank screen and a little blue light near the camera blinking every half second or so.

That's not mine, she thought. Besides, she'd never leave her laptop open like that. She made a habit of always shutting it off after every use. Shuffling onto her knees, Diana grabbed the laptop from the table and sat it down in front of her.

With a shrug she tapped the space bar, and almost threw it to the floor when the screen illuminated with a giant, black 'L' on a stark back ground. "Miss Belle?" a monotone voice spoke up from the laptop. "Can I help you?"

"You just scared the life out of me," she gasped, her hand automatically going to her chest. Diana squinted at the little light, putting her eye up to the camera, "Can you see me?"

"Yes, Miss Belle. I can see you." He replied easily, well, she assumed it was him, but there was something odd about his voice. "Please refrain from putting your eye up to the camera…it obscures my view."

Diana pulled the laptop away, blinking at the sharp brightness of the screen, "Sorry, but…I can't see you at all."

"That was the intention." L said in this overtly obvious tone that irked Diana a little. Did he sound like such an asshole yesterday? Or did I just ignore it? "Judging by your attire…it's safe to say that you've just woken up. Would I be wrong to assume you have questions you'd like to ask regarding this investigation?"

Asshole or not, at least we were going somewhere. "Not at all. I'd like to know how you plan on handling all this and what you want me to do."

A moment and then, "In that case, you should eat breakfast before we begin. You're obviously still disoriented from your ordeal and lack of sleep. Watari will bring your food by shortly. You can simply hit the space bar again once you're ready to speak to me and we'll go through the specifics."

You mean I have to talk to this thing? She barely liked to talk on the phone, and he wanted her to talk to a laptop? She snorted, yeah, no. "Can't I just come over there? I'd rather we just talk in person—I don't know if I can stand this for much longer."

She couldn't be sure, but she swore she could him make an exasperated sound, "That would be unnecessary as well as a waste of time. It would go much faster if we were to communicate strictly through this channel."

"I understand that, really, I do, but you can't expect me to sit and speak to a lap top all day when I know you're just…" she gestured out toward her doorway, "feet away."

"Actually," Came his absolute reply. "That's exactly what I expect. You did agree to all of my terms, did you not, Miss Belle?"

"Yes, but you didn't mention talking through a laptop!"

"I didn't think it would be a problem. Most people don't usually offer such adamant resistance to the idea." He drawled on, "I'd even say most prefer it…I know I do."

"If you had started out with this…yeah, I would get it. You didn't, you met with me in person first…like I'd asked. Why even do that if you're going to cut me off and drop this thing in front of me?"

He didn't reply right away to that, he gave her radio silence. She couldn't even hear anything in the background. It took a moment for him to come back to her. "The idea of that 'thing' was to make things much more convenient for you, Miss Belle. Having to set a side time in your schedule just for a five minute update would seem to me…the most inconvenient."

Now who sounds like an ass? "Look, I'm sorry to sound like a child, here—and it sounds completely irrational considering I spend most of my time on electronics because of my schedule—but that's why I'd rather just speak in person. If I can, I avoid them when possible. Can I please just see you?"

That didn't sound like a horrible request to her. It sounded pretty easy. Talk for a few minutes and bye! She'd be gone. He can go back to detecting and eating.

"During the time that we've discussed this, Miss Belle, we could've covered everything twice already."

"I don't doubt it."

A pause, and she almost thinks she hears a chuckle on the other end. But, it also could have been a weird cough to be fair. "A compromise then?"

As long as I'm talking to a face and not a computer…let's hear it.

"How would you like to join me for breakfast? We could discuss our next moves then—"

"Deal!" Diana exclaimed, having won the battle she grinned down at the laptop. "I knew you weren't completely heartless."

"Well, I suppose that's good to know." He answered quietly, and then Click! The detective's L was gone. Oh, well. She closed the laptop and set it aside, sliding out of her bed to grab some clothes before showering—

Clothes? She opened the large wardrobe again. A great deal of her clothing items were here, racks upon racks of clothes. Shoes lined the bottom of the wardrobe. When she went to the dresser, the second drawer had a collection of panties and the first a wide variety of bras—all of them seemed to come from her closet. O…kay. Just put it on the list.

Once they had started their discussion, she planned to get the specifics on what exactly she had agreed to.

The detective was as she remembered. When Watari guided her further into the suite, she was not surprised to find the Detective perched in the same position she had met him. L tucked himself into an armchair near the coffee table laden with food. Directly in front of the detective lay an assortment of sweets, off to the side, in front of the couch her meal consisted of a spinach egg white omelet with a side of bacon and strawberries. A glass of orange juice sat next to a small glass of water near her plate. At the center of the table, a tea set piped a snake of heat into the air.

L had grabbed himself a porcelain cup, drawing the large sugar bowl toward himself before picking up a cube of sugar between his thumb and forefinger while keeping the other fingers strung out. Like he was conducting a science experiment, he dropped the cube into the black tea with the utmost patience she had ever seen. His eyes actually followed the cube straight into the tea. After seeming satisfied with the result, he repeated the process until he had dropped five cubes into his 8-ounce cup.

She could feel the bile slushing around in her throat. Her father was from South Carolina, so she was no stranger to syrupy sweet tea, but dear lord! Just watching him made her stomach lurch. If she drank that, she'd have to gargle salt water for an hour.

"Miss Belle."

Watari's voice was enough to make her realize she had stopped dead in the doorway. She started, and finally decided to move forward, taking her seat adjacent to the detective.

L held the tea to his lips and drank deeply, his eyes finally flickering over to her. His feet were fighting amongst themselves, one trying to dominate the other and he carried on like he didn't even notice.

"Good Morning." L said, and her eyes flew up from his feet to meet his gaze.

"Good Morning…um…how are you?"

"I am well." He took another sip, "Thank you for asking. I trust you were able to get a good night's sleep?"

Diana breathed in deeply, "Surprisingly. I barely remember anything from yesterday…" except for your odd mannerisms…and clothes, are you wearing the exact same clothes? It's not like it mattered, he probably didn't have the time to change. He did have those huge rings around his eyes, maybe he never slept?

"I suspected as much from our discussion earlier." L wasted no time, he was able to throw shade, eat and speak with complete ease. That's another thing she remembered, he liked to speak with his mouth full. "I can't say I'm completely surprised…after all, your situation has undoubtedly put quite a strain on your psyche."

Speaking of strains, her stomach was starting to protest. She said a quick prayer and began eating as well, using a fork and knife as opposed to her hands. Several times, she had to tear her very eyes away from the detective. The way he was eating…he couldn't do this all of the time could he? There was no way. It definitely took way more effort than eating normally.

"L?" Diana stared down into her cup of sugarless tea, "Do you mind if I ask you a question?"

"In addition to the one you just asked? I wouldn't be opposed to it, considering that's the whole reason you're here to begin with," L responded "Please, do go on, Miss Belle."

"Well, it's more of a personal question than one about the case…I was just wondering about you."

She took this time to look up at him, watching as he squeezed a jelly donut between two fingers.

Diana took that as a bad sign. "Is that inappropriate?"

He was silent a moment, his eyes nailed to the donut. "Is that the question?"

"No." Of course it wasn't. What kind of question was that? "Of course not."

"Well, you should probably ask the question first and allow me to decide whether it is appropriate." With that, he was able to squeeze the powdered donut together and—quite literally—bite it in half. How he managed that? Beyond reason.

Or maybe not, her father could finish a 12-ounce Coke in two gulps. She supposed a donut was more or less the same—in regards to sugar at least.

Feeling a strange sense of power, she crossed her legs and leaned toward him, "Can I have a set of questions?"

"Is this set of questions about the on-going investigation?"

Diana barely suppressed a laugh, "Definitely not."

"Then no."

"Oh, don't be that way. It'll be fun—like 21 questions."

"Not that I've ever played 21 questions…" he scooped the whipped cream off of a golden waffle and stuck his whole finger in his mouth. "But, by the sound of it, I doubt I'd find it very appealing."

"No? Then let's play Never Have I Ever." She said slapping her hand against the seat of the couch. "I hate the game, but it's fun…sort of. It tricks people into revealing a lot of things they normally wouldn't."

"If everyone knows the object of the game would it still be called a trick?"

"Yes, because after you play you always end up wishing you had lied…at least on half the questions."

"Then why not just lie? Why go through all the trouble?"

"Because…" She bit her lip, he had her there, "I'm not sure. I just don't. Maybe next time, I'll give it a try. So, will you play?"

He stared over at her with that oddly piercing and altogether dull gaze of his. He thought it over as if she was asking him to decide the fate of the world not play a dumb game. "Later…perhaps. Right now, we have to focus on the issue at hand. Have you forgotten your own circumstances, Miss Belle?"

With that she folded her arms, "No. Especially since you've reminded me several times today."

"Do I have to remind you to take this seriously?"

"No. But I'm not going to sit here and wallow in something I can't control. I'm not in the mood for that, it takes way too much effort and I don't have the time or the energy—"

"Somehow you manage to have both the time and the energy to try to coerce me into playing a game with you."

Damn straight, "Exactly, I like to enjoy my spare time, besides, I trust you. You said you'd take care of it, Detective, so take care of it. Playing a game with little old me, won't distract you too much if you are as good as they say."

"In case you don't know, I should probably inform you that goading someone who's trying to help you into a fight isn't exactly a smart move." L narrowed his gaze at that, his voice losing its lightness. "Moreover, how could you honestly say you trust me…you don't even know me."

"And you don't know me, despite that, you've taken on one of the most common cases plaguing celebrities today. This isn't a problem that will stop the rest from happening, once it's solved. After me, there'll be another and another and another. It won't end. So, I don't really know why you've taken this case on, the only reason—besides what you've said—is that you're getting something out of this. When people choose to do something, they put effort into it, so when you say you'll protect me, I expect you to do it. In the meantime, I'll live my life and distract myself as skillfully as I can. It wouldn't kill you to do the same. We could actually end up friends, I'm friends with most of my security—"

"I'd say that that would be smart on your part if your life had not been threatened days before the incident and a stalker hadn't still managed to get by them." L said absently, but it obviously wasn't absently, he was paying attention. She could tell by the way his expression had only darkened during their exchange. "Now, it seems like a wasted effort."

Diana's nostrils flared. Now who was trying to start a fight?

Honestly, it was like he completely ignored the rest of her argument, found the one hole and started picking it apart without an invitation. She was right and she didn't imagine it. He was an asshole. The worse kind too, he had a superiority complex. If he wasn't right, no one was.

Diana wanted to just throw her gauntlet down right then and there, say fuck it, and storm out of the room. She was famous after all; it's what he probably expected her to do. Throw a tantrum when things weren't going her way, but no. She needed to stay cool, stay calm. Everything he was saying to her didn't matter, as soon as this was all over, she probably wouldn't even remember this exchange let alone still harbor a grudge over it. Practice what you preach. If she was going to sit through this, he'd allow her to do it on her terms. "I get that you're professional, but you don't really have to be so callous. It's unnecessary and rude." Diana shuffled over to the last cushion, putting the two of them closer. Her knee was only a handful of inches away from his twisting feet. "Besides, wouldn't knowing more about me actually help you do your job?"

"In a sense? Yes. But I doubt playing a series of question-based games would reveal anything I don't already know about you." Came his quiet reply, and she noticed for the first time he hadn't gone for his next piece of cake. One hand sat atop his knee and the other pushed his thumb against his lip. "As you put it yesterday, I did my homework. Anything more would just be superfluous—a distraction from the case."

My case. Diana thought.

She sighed inwardly, her eyes flying over to that thumb of his. It took everything in her power not to reach over and remove that hand from his mouth.

How old was this guy? He didn't look much older than her, but those deep circles around his dilated eyes said otherwise. To be fair, when she really looked at him, took in the wildness of his dark hair, the almost skeletal slimness of his hands and the way he curved over his knees…he looked like a child, perhaps an overgrown teenager. Maybe puberty had hit him so hard it had sucked all the fat and life right out of him. There was no other way to describe him. The baggy jeans and wrinkled white t-shirt did nothing but add to this image—this look of slothful innocence.

Maybe she was being too hard on him. It was obvious what he was…a sheltered genius in the strictest sense. He had—rather boldly—admitted to having no friends to brag about. Of course, he wouldn't know how much of an asshole he was being. He had no one to tell him. He had no one to say hey, "No. No. That's rude. Apologize. Why? Because that's something an asshole would say—yes, I had to swear…No, I'm not in the wrong. Just apologize already!" Sure, he seemed to have Watari around quite a bit, but what did that mean? If L was the man's boss, he wouldn't object to anything L said. If they were closer, family, that still didn't mean Watari would call L out. Her own parents seldom called her out, even when she was wrong, even when she wanted them too. Parents had a way of enabling you like that. One time she approached them about seeing a psychiatrist and they had immediately rebuffed the idea.

"Nothing's wrong with you." They said. "You're not crazy—crazy people need psychiatrists."

So she refrained. It would break them if they found out, and they would find out because the world would find out. Her father, old-fashioned as he was would probably go into hiding. Her mother would fly to her house and drag Diana back home, back to them where their love could fix her instead—or create a monster.

Diana stood to her feet, L's eyes shot over to her in an instant. She stepped over to him and squatted down near the arm of his chair. He looked down at her, his lips slightly parted by his thumb. "If you do this for me, I promise I won't complain about anything else. I'll be the perfect—what's the word I'm looking for?—never mind. If you do this, I'll follow your rules to the 't'. It would definitely help me deal and process a lot of this, I think. You're probably right, I'm ignoring what's happening because I haven't processed it yet. I don't think I even want to. I guess I want to make this into something normal—for my sake. We could even try to be friends, if you don't hate the idea." She took this moment to reach out to him, place her hand against his hand situated on his knee. Wow, his hand is so cold. "Is that so…unreasonable?"

Diana knew a few things just then: 1) L was not used to physical contact like at all. 2) He may be an asshole, but perhaps he just needed guidance—a friend. 3) When dealing with the detective: lead with sweetness and end with sweetness and get pass all the venom in the middle as fast as you can.

"No." L responded, his eyes darting down to her hand over his. "I don't find that wholly unreasonable."

Thanks for reading, just a heads up: I may change the summary. I never end up liking the summery after I post the second chapter. I always change it. Constructive criticism appreciated.