Feb 20, 2011

Chapter Nineteen

Chapter 19


Heiji's POV

I woke up to the slight breathing of Kazuha beside me. I tried to sit up, but pain in my abdomen kept me from doing so, I groaned, and fell back down.

"Heiji?" Kazuha blinked open her sleepy eyes. She looked so pretty and innocent. Our kiss had me rethinking how I viewed her. I wanted more…

"Yes, Kazuha?" I said smiling. The bombing had been nothing, I had gained a prize. A very precious one.

"Could you not hold on so tightly to me hand? It's starting to hurt." She had her usual cheerful smile, so I knew she really didn't mind it at all. But I hadn't realized I had kept holding onto her hand the entire time.

"Yesterday sure was something, wasn't it?" I asked, wanting to know her opinion without asking directly.

She blushed a deep red color, making her pale cheeks look like roses. Her emerald eyes seemed embarrassed. "I loved yesterday. Even if we both ended up in a hospital."

"So did I." I got up, ignoring the pain, and sat down right next to her cot. "You want to do it again?"

Her face flushed even redder, and I had to laugh. "Don't be shy!" I pulled her closer, and we were having our second kiss. Then our third. Then our fourth.

I wanted them to go on forever; her arms locked around my neck, and I wrapped mine around her waist. It seemed like eternity, and the tiniest moment, when we were interrupted by Mouri and the small girl. I stared somewhat warily at them, slightly angry that they had ruined our moment. I let go of Kazuha's hand, and stood up to talk to them.

"Hattori-kun." Mouri looked slightly sad, and wistful. I instantly felt terrible; we were basically flaunting the moments she would never get. "Are you guys okay? They said you were fine on the news, but when we came last night, they wouldn't let us in."

"A couple of cuts, bruises, third-degree burns, nothing major." Luckily, we had been far enough away to be protected from the worst of the explosions. "How many survivors were there?"

"Other than you two?" Her eyebrows raised slightly. Then she seemed depressed. "None, everybody died there. They're having a mass memorial today. The people that the rubble didn't kill, the smoke did. It was absolutely terrible. I'm so happy you two made it."

"Lucky security threw me out then." I remembered the guy at the front who didn't believe me, and the security guards who forced me out of the building. Running into Kazuha, kissing her, and then the world burst into flames around us…"Do they know who set the bombs up?"

"Nobody but us I think. But this little girl doesn't want us to say anything about it. She says it'll put us in major, major danger."

I looked at the girl, Shiho Miyano I remembered, and stared her straight in the eye. "We could arrest them, and stop them from killing anymore people. Hundreds were just killed. And you want to keep quiet, Miyano?"

"It's not Miyano anymore. I'm keeping my real name secret. I'm now Haibara Ai." Her voice was still as cold as it was yesterday, but her eyes were different. Like the eyes of somebody hiding all of their tears, and full of hate. I shivered, she might be twenty, but it was truly scary on the face of a six year old.

"Answer my question. We could end everything here. Tell me why you want to remain quiet." I walked up closer, and bent down so I could face her at eye level. "Why?"

"Sometimes your own safety is worth more than justice. Especially when there's no evidence left behind at all. You know, this time they couldn't even find a single bomb in the wreckage. You can't underestimate the organization, or else you'll die. I'm not sure if I mentioned it before, but you're just a step away from being placed on their hit list." Her eyes were hard, and I was sure she was telling the truth.

"Why would they want to kill Heiji?" Kazuha asked. She looked frightened.

"For guessing right. They think you have the ability to solve Kudo's murder. And if you get too close to the truth-" She held out her hand and pretended to shoot me. "That's what will happen. Short and sweet, just like Kudo. No evidence left behind, and no one left to solve either of your murders. Witnesses, of course, will also be killed." She acknowledged Kazuha and Mouri. "When the media come in later today, you have to tell them you were there by coincidence. Otherwise, well, I've already told you."

I couldn't believe that I would have to hide the truth. Wasn't it my duty as a detective to bring the truth to light? To remove the shroud of lies behind a murder, and reveal the true killer? To bring justice to the dead and living? This case was different from anything I had ever solved before. "I'll keep quiet, but you can't expect me to hide the truth forever."

"I promise I won't make you. I have my reasons to get back at the Organization as well. My sister was killed, of course I want justice." Instead of looking at me, she glared angrily at Mouri. What the heck?

"It's not my fault, Ai-chan," she whispered to the little girl. She didn't notice that I could hear her. "I didn't choose to have him with me. It just happened."

It felt wrong to ask her what she was talking about, but I knew I had to. "Who's with you, Mouri? Please tell me the truth."

She looked surprised, and then sad, and then introspective. She was whispering under her breath, and closed her eyes like she was listening to someone. "Shinichi…"

"Is it something to do with Kudo? Tell me, Mouri," I pressed even deeper, trying to pierce through the veil of lies that I could now see.

"Heiji, stop," Kazuha begged. "It's hurting her."

"But…" I couldn't refuse Kazuha's plead. She saw I had given up, and embraced me. "Not now," I whispered, making sure Mouri or Miyano, I meant Haibara, couldn't hear us. "You'll make her feel worse."

"It is Shinichi." Mouri looked over at us. "It has everything to do with Shinichi. Because he's still with me."

I took in a sharp intake of breath, I had guessed right. Even though ghosts weren't really supposed to exist. Supernatural went against reality, but here it was. In real life. It went against just about everything I had as a detective.

"What do you mean by that, Ran-chan?" Kazuha looked confused, and her face looked like a child asking a question about something it doesn't know.

"He talks to me, through my mind. I can hear him, and I can talk to him. That's how I know what killed him. That's how I know who killed him. That's why, in a way, I can't truly feel sad about his death, because we're in love."

He had died, and then confessed. What horrendous timing. I felt really bad for them, they might be together, but they couldn't truly be together, not like Kazuha and I. What should I say? That I was happy he was with her? That I felt sorry that they couldn't be together? What?

"Ran-chan," Kazuha started. "I'm happy that you finally let that go." She went up and hugged Mouri, and they both cried together.

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