Disclaimer: Don't own.

For the challenge over at manycases1truth. Technically I had already started writing it, but that gave me the push to keep writing it. As it stands there are so many more stories I could tell with this, but these are the ones that decided they were important.

Kaito sees the sad girl standing in front of the clock tower, and it doesn't sit right with him. No one should be sad if they can help it. "Hey, what's wrong?"

The girl turns sorrowful eyes towards him. "My daddy, he said he'd meet me here and we could go get ice cream. But he's always so busy, and I think he forgot again."

"I'm sorry," Kaito decides that the best way to cheer her up is a trick, and makes a rose appear for her. "My name's Kuroba Kaito. It's nice to meet you."

The girl's eyes widen in delight. "You can make things appear too? Just like my daddy?"

Kaito is surprised. He didn't know anyone did real magic other than him and his dad. "Your daddy can do magic?"

The girl claps her hands over her mouth, realizing she said something she shouldn't have. She turns bashful. "Well, no. Can you keep a secret?"

Kaito nods emphatically, miming zipping his mouth shut.

The girl leans towards him and whispers in his ear, "My daddy's a superhero."

Kaito's mouth opens in a huge smile. "Really? No way! My daddy can do magic!"

"My name's Aoko," the girl smiles, and it's the beginning of a beautifully violent relationship.

Hakuba Saguru hates genies.

He'd been tracking this particular genie for a week now. 'Tracking' was a bit of an overstatement, more like he'd been cleaning up messes and deducing that the genie was the cause of them, but at any rate he'd deduced when and how the genie entered London and from there had a lovely route of chaos tacked out in bright string on a map at home. Unfortunately the string told him nothing, and after losing track of the genie's lamp at the last fiasco (crying unhappy child at a mall demanding the latest action figure from his favorite cartoon) he was reduced to waiting for the next explosion, hopefully metaphorically.

He promptly forgot about the genie however when there was an outbreak of zombies. An outbreak that completely baffled him to be honest, as they weren't following any general zombie patterns. Yes, they tried to eat brains, but the zombism wasn't being transmitted through biting. It seemed that a number of corpses in varying states of decomposition had simply decided to get up and chew on the living. Two corpses who had recently died in an automobile accident had escaped from a morgue, but other than that all of the other zombies seemed to come out of nowhere. There was any set location either, they were all over the British Isles.

Then someone called the police about having found some disturbed graves. Further investigation revealed disturbed graves in all the places that the zombies had appeared. Which explained where the zombies had come from, but not the two who had escaped a morgue.

The clue was in the names.

Saguru quickly pieced together a family tree, connecting twenty different disturbed graves to the car crash victims before being satisfied. It was at that point he went to talk to the survivor. Really, he should have seen the genie's involvement in all this. She'd wished that her family was still alive, and the genie had delivered. It turned out that she'd been given the lamp as a get-well gift by a friend who worked as a janitor at the mall and had found it in the trash. She in turn had given it to a girl from the children's ward after she'd seen how amazed she was by it.

Saguru could not get to Stephanie Watson's room fast enough, and even with a horse's legs it was too late. A baby bird of some kind flopped around on the bed, and the lamp sat innocently on the table next to it. Saguru grabbed the lamp, and a voice spoke in his head.

I've led you on a merry chase, haven't I?

Not merry, no.

I'm just giving people what they want. The poor little birdie over there just wanted to fly. What is it that you want? To be freed from society's expectations? To be able to run like your ancestors, to let your wild emotions control you? You're so boring, suppressing your true nature like this. What do you-

Saguru put the lamp down on the floor and crushed it beneath a hoof, banishing the genie from this plane of existence. He then turned and gently picked up Stephanie, careful of the brown feathers that had replaced some of the downy white. She huddled small in his hands, clearly scared. "Don't worry. I'll take care of you Stephanie," he said quietly to her. Stephanie made a noise that almost sounded angry, then another that sounded a little sad. Saguru smiled a little. "I understand. How does Watson sound?"

Watson crooned at him and fluffed her feathers.

Hakuba Saguru really hates genies.

She's had the wind knocked out of her and the past moments of her life had been so terrifying that she has no idea whether it was ten seconds or ten minutes ago that Pearly White attacked and everything's just a blur to her, but somehow that's okay. Because she's been through this before, it always ends okay, with her on a roof with the wind knocked out of her unable to make sense of the past few minutes as a man in a black cape blends back into the shadows.

Only this time he doesn't disappear into nothing, just stands there looking awkward, and she wonders if maybe he should be getting after Pearly White. But then she looks over her shoulder and sees that Shinigami has shown up and is taking care of it. Which means that everyone still down there is protected, but Ran is confused as to why Truth hasn't rappelled back down to make sure that this battle doesn't end in dismemberment as so many of Shinigami's do.

Truth shifts slightly and then takes a few steps forward. Ran realizes that this is the most unsure she's ever seen the hero. "Ran," he says, and Ran realizes why Truth had never spoken to her before, because she knows that voice better than she knows her own. He too glances down to make sure Shinigami has everything in hand before continuing. "There's something I need to tell you."

They ignore the chaos down below as they talk and talk, questions and answers and a large amount of oh my god Truth is Shinichi. Then Truth is distracted, glancing off into the dark, and he looks back with a smile and tells her that he'll call her later, he's got to look into something, she can take care of herself from here right? Then he jumps off the edge and with a laugh and the firing of a grappling gun is swinging off into the night.

It is all too fast for her to stop him from running off, as much as she desperately wants to.

Aoko slams her hands down on Kaito's desk one morning and hisses in his ear, "You're a lazy ass."

"Aookooo," Kaito whines, drawing it out.

Aoko casually glances around, then whispers back. "I really could use your help you know. If we worked together we'd be able to catch Kaito Kid. I nearly had him last night, would've if I'd had backup."

"I told you, I'm not interested in that sort of thing." Ever since Aoko's father had literally passed his cape down to her, she'd been after him to team up with her and use his magic. Which was an appealing idea, except for the fact that her primary target was Kaito Kid. Previous obligations and all that. "All you ever do is chase Kid. How do you know he's even a bad guy?"

"He steals things," she answers simply.

"And then he gives them back."

"But he still steals them!"

"And you'd rather chase someone who steals things then gives them back than someone who actually hurts other people?"

"BAKAITO!"Aoko shouts, and suddenly the whole classroom is looking at the two of them. They're used enough to random outbursts though that their classmates quickly go back to their own business.

Aoko suddenly looks like she's fighting back tears, and Kaito realizes that he crossed some invisible line. "Kid does hurt people," she says quietly. "He hurt me, for so many years. Chasing him is the closest I've ever felt to my father. Working with my father, to catch Kid... it almost makes me feel normal."

Kaito makes a show of yawning and leaning back in his chair. "Then what do you need me for? It sounds like you've got everything you ever wanted."

"Kaito," she whispers a little hesitantly, "When we catch Kid, and I can set my eyes on other criminals, will you use your magic to fight with me then?"

"Sure Aoko. I just want to focus on my life right now, not superheroing."

Kaito really hopes this doesn't come back to bite him someday.

He goes in fast, and a little cocky, he'd admit that even then but now he knows that he was really cocky, way too cocky. But why shouldn't he be cocky? It's just three guys, two sides, and one suitcase full of money. And yeah, the two in black are better fighters than he'd expected, but it's nothing he can't handle. He's been training for this practically his whole life, and had become an accomplished enough crime fighter by the time he was fourteen that his parents saw fit to leave their city in his care and go off and find some hellhole on the other side of the ocean to patrol.

Then the wide one grabs onto his cape and it startles him because no one had ever thought to go for his cape before, but more importantly it stops him suddenly and gives his friend an opening. And it all just goes downhill from there...

Kaito Kid would like to register a complaint with Reality. He was previously unaware that centaurs actually existed, and would like them to go back to not existing.

In the brief seconds he is in flight his brain manages to register the thought holy shit he just got kicked in the chest by a freaking centaur, and then he lands and owww, pain, lots and lots of pain. His entire list of things he was not expecting when he first put on the costume is promptly replaced by 'centaurs', and a few second later he mentally tacks on 'with attack hawks'.

The centaur whistles and the hawk stops pecking at him to fly over and perch on the centaur's back. Then the centaur unsheathes one of the biggest, shiniest, sharpest looking broadswords Kid has ever seen and points it menacingly at him. "I want to know one thing," it – he – asks Kid. "Why do you steal?"

Kid can't find it in himself to work around the pain and formulate a proper sentence, let alone something that sounds properly mystical, so he settles for flipping the blond centaur the bird and a quick teleportation spell. It's something he would normally consider cheating, yes, but desperate times and armed centaurs with attack hawks call for desperate measures.

They get a new student at school the next day, and Kaito can't figure out what it is about him that's so familiar. Then he realizes that Hakuba Saguru is the centaur, and comes to the conclusion that he is doomed.

Barring unforeseen events, Detective Takagi Wataru gave it five minutes. If another hero didn't show up by then, he was putting on the mask and Shinigami was coming out.

He really hoped another hero showed up.

Because as villainous as the Catcher was, he had his reasons for what he did, twisted as they were, and didn't deserve what Shinigami would do to him. Shinigami wasn't a hero. Shinigami was a force all its own, and Wataru kept it locked away as much as he could. He liked to think he was having a small amount of positive influence on the being that possessed the mask and borrowed his body, but there was still far too much blood involved for him to feel anything but guilt over it.

But before five minutes were up, and before another hero showed up, Catcher did something stupid. They always do. Wataru made sure no one was looking, then pulled out the skull-like mask and put it on.

In a hazy dream-state, Wataru watched as a guest in his own body while Shinigami went after Catcher with the single mindedness of a being that objected to people dying before their time. And if one person had to die before their time for the good of the many, so be it.

After Catcher was disposed of, Wataru and Shinigami watched as a young boy ran up to a high schooler shouting, "Ran-neechan, are you okay?"

A shudder ran through their body. That boy is wrong. Wataru had never heard Shinigami sound less than sure about anything before. He agreed, and it scared him. Shinigami was all about the flow of time, and Wataru understood that. Someone who appeared far too younger than they should be was not right.

Wataru knew that Shinigami was about to act. Don't kill him!

Why not?

Wataru had to come up with an excuse fast. Well, look at him. He's a happy little boy. Killing him here and now would be, well it would be wrong. And bad. And people wouldn't think very good of you after that. Us. Think well of us. And besides, wouldn't it be a better idea to investigate first, find out why this happened before we kill him? I mean, that might just make it worse. And there might be more anomalies, we can't find the other anomalies if-

Enough. Your logic is sound. I will not kill him.

Wataru breathed a sigh of relief.


He's running, running as fast as he can but he knows it's not going to be enough. Why couldn't he have seen the distraction for what it was? Why couldn't he have realized the bombings were not the true objective, that it was him all along? That the culprit was hoping to lure Truth out, not knowing that Truth doesn't exist anymore? And when Truth didn't show, when Silver Bullet showed up instead, of course he went for the one thing, the one person that Truth always saved. What were the odds that a second villain would choose then to attack in a different part of the city, distracting Silver Bullet and making him oblivious to Ran's abduction? High enough, apparently.

He doesn't slow to pick his way over the rubble, nearly falling when he places a foot on unsteady ground multiple times. Finally he reaches them, Oni and Goldstar sitting on a flat surface and beyond them Ran lying still. "How... what..." he pants, unable to catch his breath after his mad dash across the city.

"Neechan'll be fine, probably," Oni answers less than reassuringly, and before Silver Bullet can demand exactly what that means Goldstar explains.

"She was pretty badly injured, and lost a lot of blood. We did what we could, but it was too late for just that to be sufficient. I had to give her some of my blood. I have no idea what that'll do to her."

Silver Bullet would throw himself at Goldstar if he wasn't absolutely sure the alien could subdue him in less than half a minute. And if Ran didn't come out of all this absolutely fine, he was going to find a way to get Goldstar regardless. "Where is the bastard who did this?"

Goldstar looks like she's about to chastise him for his language, and Silver Bullet realizes he should probably tone it down, but Oni says, "Sorry brat, but there's no way I'm letting you anywhere near him like this."

Goldstar is a super strong alien who could literally fly circles around him if she so chose. Oni is an idiot samurai wannabe from Osaka with a sword. Silver Bullet can take him, and he does, up until the point that Goldstar takes time off from watching over Ran to help her boyfriend kick his ass.

Eventually the police show up to take the culprit away and paramedics show up to take Ran away, and Goldstar goes with the paramedics just in case, leaving Silver Bullet alone with Oni. Silver Bullet is all set for round two, but then Oni leans over and whispers, "That really explains a lot, Truth."

Silver Bullet really hates Oni.


The dark figure leaps down from the rafters, a small chuckle escaping the Woman of One Thousand Shadows at Inspector Nakamori Ginzo's single-word response to what just happened. "That's it? That's all you have to say about me saving your life?"

Inspector Nakamori eyes Red Herring and his henchmen, who are currently literally tied up with shadows. "Pretty much."

"What do you know? I have rendered the famed Inspector Nakamori speechless."

"You were last sighted in Melbourne, Australia. What are you doing in Tokyo?"

The heroine's eyes, the only part of her that is not covered in constantly moving shadows concealing her identity, roll. "Such a policeman. I travel. I just happen to have traveled to Tokyo."

Inspector Nakamori watched as she pulled some rope from somewhere and started tying up Red Herring and his goons. "So you're not here for any particular reason?"

"Why do you ask?"

"I could use some help catching a thief-" Ginzo starts, but is cut off by sudden laughter from the Woman of One Thousand Shadows. He stares as she doubles over herself, unable to regain control for reasons entirely unknown to the Inspector. Even later when the backup he called arrives, the laughter of the Woman of One Thousand Shadows rings loud and far as she leans curled up against the wall, trying not to fall over in her hysterics.

Angel is chastising them, hands on her hips. She's telling them about how they're far too young to be putting themselves in danger like this, leave the crime fighting to the adults, just because you have superpowers doesn't mean you should be using them, and everything else she's ever said when she's caught them catching bad guys. As it happens Goldstar is in town and levitates a foot off the ground next to Angel, arms folded with a twin disapproving look, and the sun reflects off of their armor.

Like they, especially Angel, know anything about experience, but Silver Bullet keeps his mouth shut and plays seven years old.

Silver Bullet grins as he sets his traps. He loves heists. Particularly because he can let himself go at them, really get into the spirit of the fight without worrying about Angel popping up out of nowhere and yelling at him about how little boys shouldn't be fighting crime and maybe noticing that something is a little bit familiar about his fighting style. He knows he's safe from that because Angel hates heists, is scared to death of Kaito Kid's magic.

Silver Bullet finds one of Kid's mundane setups and his grin turned wry. Kid's stage magic used to give him almost as much trouble as his real magic, but Silver Bullet isn't against fighting fire with fire and has since studied up on it. He takes a few minutes to 'fix' Kid's trick, trying not to imagine the look on Kid's face when it backfires because if there's one thing he hates about heists-


-it's that. He and Kid seem to have some sort of low-level telepathic connection (at least it was a very bad connection, only the loudest of thoughts and emotions got through) when in proximity to each other, and he knows it annoys him far more than it does the thief. But it puts them on far more even ground than with anyone else, and even though Silver Bullet can't stand it that Kid has apparently had practice not thinking about his civilian identity whereas Kid figured out all his secrets just through being able to read his thoughts in the first place, he enjoys their battles where they each know what the other is going to do before they do it.

And he is content in knowing that he doesn't have to use full force on the magician thief because he knows that, if nothing else, at least Kaito Kid's heart is in the right place.

Gray Lady goes still as soon as they finish tying up the two-bit thugs for the police to find. They all notice, and Amazonia asks, "What is it, Gray?"

Gray Lady's head darts around as her hands reach up and finger the hood on her bright red cape. "A presence. I can't quite... It's like it's shielded somehow." Then her eyes suddenly go wide and she starts with, "It's-" but the rest of her sentence is drowned out by the sound of a number of villains crashing the abandoned warehouse that is their current location. She doesn't really need to finish it now though, because all of a sudden 'trap' is written all over it.

"Justice Boys unite!" Bruiser, Speedster, and Amazonia shout, then Bruiser and Speedster charge at their opponents while Amazonia draws her bow. Silver Bullet catches Gray Lady rolling her eyes, and gives her a twitch of a smile before they follow their brightly-clad comrades into battle.

They're just finishing tying everyone up for the second time that afternoon when Angel and the police arrive. Angel's lecture takes a turn rarely taken when she notices that a corner of Gray Lady's cape is not quite the same color as the rest of it. Crime fighting is one thing, but stabbing a guy in the hand after he grabs onto her cape is apparently a far worse thing for a young girl to be doing.

Gray Lady knows Silver Bullet's opinion of capes quite well, so he resists the urge to say, "I told you so."

Someone, no word yet on who though he had narrowed it down to an idiot, had placed a bunch of E.V.I.T.s all over Tokyo, which according to the ransom note stood for 'Extermination Via Irradiated Tachyons' which was really bad no matter which way you put it. Said someone wanted a large sum of money by midnight or the E.V.I.T.s would automatically go off, and if they really did what the label said they did, it would probably end with the destruction of all life on Earth. Hence the person who had built the E.V.I.T.s being an idiot.

Not only that, last time they had bumped into each other Angel had warned Silver Bullet that if she saw him again she'd follow him home and report his crime fighting to his parents, and Ran had been giving Conan funny looks again. Which meant that he had to lie low while saving the planet.

No pressure then.

He and Professor Agasa had found an E.V.I.T. and taken a close look at it. The Professor managed to determine that taking them apart would be too risky and that the only way to safely disarm them would be to locate the computer controlling them and tell it to shut them down. Which, after hacking into the E.V.I.T.'s system, was what Silver Bullet was trying to find.

Of course there was a secret base under Tokyo Tower. Anywhere else just simply wouldn't be showy enough. Silver Bullet was on his way when his rope unexpectedly went slack and he started falling instead of flying.

He wasn't very high up, grabbing onto a street light and swinging onto an awning, breaking some of his momentum before rolling down it and landing on his feet on the sidewalk. He looked up and saw the silhouette of Shinigami standing on the roof, scythe held out as the cut end of his rope dangled. "What was that about?" Silver Bullet yelled up at him. "We're on the same side!"

Shinigami vanished from the rooftop only to reappear in front of Silver Bullet. Shinigami's tattered black robes waved gently in a nonexistent breeze, a mask like a skull staring out from under the hood. But what made Silver Bullet go still was the cold metal of the scythe touching the back of his neck. Shinigami was too violent for most people's tastes, but he was still a good guy. Right?

"What are you doing?" Shinigami demanded to know.

"The signal controlling the E.V.I.T.s is coming from underneath Tokyo Tower," Silver Bullet explained, keeping his voice steady. "I'm going there to try and shut it off."

There was a moment of silence, during which Silver Bullet seriously wondered if Shinigami was about to behead him. Finally the scythe was removed. "Very well. We will work together on this."

Once they got to Tokyo Tower, Silver Bullet found himself grateful for Shinigami's help. The place was guarded by robots and while Silver Bullet probably would have been able to fight or sneak his way around them, with the looming deadline it would've been hairy. As it were Shinigami's violent tendencies came in handy and they made it to the underground control room with ten minutes to spare.

Where a big-ass monstrosity was waiting for them.

The room had a very high ceiling, and it was immediately apparent why; the main occupant was easily eight feet tall. Closer to nine, Silver Bullet imagined. Between the way it rolled together in some places and stretched over large scars in others, the beast's reddish skin seemed strangely ill-fitting on the heavily muscled creature. And just to show off how heavily muscled it was, with a guttural roar it picked up a large filing cabinet and tossed it at them as a child might toss a small ball.

And, because this wasn't unfair enough already, the thing was incendiary.

Silver Bullet and Shinigami dodged the filing cabinet, then dodged the flaming files that flew out of the cabinet when it landed. Silver Bullet threw two explosive shuriken at the beast. One embedded itself in the creature's shoulder and exploded, seeming to have no effect but to make it angrier. The other was dodged, hit the ceiling, and then exploded, causing chunks of the roof to fall to the floor.

"Don't do that again," Shinigami warned.

"I AM THE INCINERATOR!" the beast bellowed.

"Don't worry. I'll take the computer, you provide the distraction?"




"We have a monologuer," Silver Bullet muttered to himself as, while Shinigami got in the Incinerator's face, he slunk quickly around the edge of the room towards the bank of computers in the back. But Incinerator saw what he was doing and ran towards Silver Bullet with arms outstretched. Silver Bullet jumped up, used a hand as a stepping stool, and kicked Incinerator square on the nose. Shinigami rammed into the back of Incinerator's legs right then, throwing him off-balance and causing him to fall on his back.

Silver Bullet continued his way to the computers while Shinigami continued to fight the Incinerator. He wasn't having much luck, the Incinerator either dodging or using furniture to block the scythe, but he was keeping him busy and that was all Silver Bullet needed. And, with three seconds to spare, he stopped the E.V.I.T.s from exploding.

Realizing that something should've exploded by now, the Incinerator seemed to deflate. "Damn you superheroes."

Silver Bullet strode for the exit, motioning for Shinigami to follow. Right before he shut the door to the underground lab, he tossed a pellet of knockout gas in. "Come on, we should get out of here and alert the authorities."

Shinigami matched his strides with Silver Bullet's much smaller ones. "Who are you?" he couldn't stop himself from asking.

Silver Bullet sent him a grin that was almost feral. "I'll tell you in the afterlife."

Some of their superhero identities are based on actual superheroes, while others I just took from their personalities and such. For instance Conan is Robin, but Kaito is just Kaito.

And who doesn't look at Takagi and go, "Oh man, he's totally secretly a badass superhero."