2) L must really hate parties.
DEATH NOTE (doesn't belong to me)
Pairing: LIGHT/L. (L/Light? I can't tell.)
Genre: AU featuring innocent!Light. The PG equivilent of a PWP.
Summary: "It was with your help that we were finally able to put an end to Kira's terrorist hold over the minds of the people!" (they've arrested the wrong Kira; Light and L talk politics)
"You may want to get something to eat while I list all of our friends who worked with us diligently--whose support was invaluable, I should say--and who couldn't be here tonight, because it might take awhile…"
The official, a Junior Senator who'd chaired the Kira Investigation Bureau (not the same as the Kira Special Investigation Headquarters), took a minute to beam and let the applause die down.
"Takehito Iwao. Chisa Iizuka. Jim Fawkes. Akira Nogawa…"
Half of them hadn't been involved in the case at all. It was disgusting but that was politics; if the profession had been an honest one, he might have been studying to be a politician instead of a detective. Politicians compromised, something he would never do.
"Asuka Hara. Kazuhiko Kamiya. Sora Maeda. Jeff Green…"
Light listened with outward pride and a secret sense of hollowness, which he mistook for relief. He sipped at the sparkling cider the caterers had provided at L's insistence. Next week he'd be twenty and legal; tonight he'd had to remind any number of well-meaning officers that drinking sake, even in celebration, would be breaking the law. They were invariably taken aback: some to learn that he was so young, others that he was so upright. Light made note of those officers. If they viewed the law as something to be upheld only when convenient…well, they probably shouldn't hold positions of any importance. Someday he'd be Chief of Police, and he wouldn't tolerate corruption in his ranks.
"Senator Koyama, would you like to contribute a few remarks?"
Light could remember the last time he'd been to a formal police event. It'd been an end-of-year fling, something for officers of all ranks and divisions. Most of them had spent the evening drinking cheap alcohol and griping about interdepartmental politics, two things that Light found terminally boring. He'd gone at Sayu's insistence. I really want to go to Daddy's party, she'd said, but if I go alone there'll be no one to talk to. Light, please! So, he'd gone. It had been as good an opportunity as any to learn the inner workings of the Tokyo Police Force.
"Thank you, Senator. The road to success has been long and arduous, but there is no problem that, when tackled with fortitude by conscientious men of ability…"
The party had been held in a rented convention room on the second floor of a moderately priced hotel, with ugly carpeting and fake plastic chandeliers. The room had been divided from the next one by heavy fabric hung from the ceiling. This year's event was still in a convention center, but it was a much nicer one, with real walls of expensive paneled wood. Only the highest-ranking officers and their wives were in attendence. And politicians, of course--every politician in Tokyo who could conceivably have contributed to Kira's arrest, if only in the most indirect of ways, was present.
"And finally, to all the police officers who risked their lives, thank you!"
The floors were of similarly expensive wood, and highly polished. The chandeliers were real Venetian crystal. The speaker occupied a place on a fancy, intricately carved wooden dais. Food was laid out by color. Sitting at the end of the refreshments table, and looking absolutely miserable, was L.
"It was with your help that we were finally able to put an end to Kira's terrorist hold over the minds of the people!"
Light moved to stand beside him. "Hey," he said, startling L out of his contemplation of a three-foot high stack of cheese cubes. "Do you want to get some air?" He put a hand on L's shoulder. He could feel his anxiety like a physical force, muscles so taught they were vibrating.
"Yes," L said, without looking up. "I would like that very much, Light-kun"
"Does it bother you?" Light asked. He stood leaning backwards on his elbows against the railing of an arched ornamental bridge. A European-style hotel with a formal Japanese-style garden: what incredibly bad taste. It was true that there were some things money couldn't buy. L stood next to him, peering over the edge of the bridge at the shadows of koi in the water.
"Does what bother me, Light-kun?"
"That there isn't a single person in that room willing to acknowledge the favor you did them by catching Kira. That the politicians all want to pretend that they were the ones…"
Light stopped, too angry to continue. He sulked up at stars he couldn't see through the light of the Tokyo skyline. Skyscrapers hemmed in the garden on two sides; the other two were screened by elegant tall trees but beyond them, Light knew, were more tall buildings, more people living pointlessly. L regarded him with open curiosity.
"It wasn't a favor. I was paid very well. I've always worked anonymously; I don't care about such things."
"Yes, but it isn't right. Some of those men called off the investigation!"
"Hmm." L studied Light sidelong. "It is all a question of perspective. I'm surprised that it bothers you, Light-kun. I would not have expected it to."
Light drummed his fingers against the air. "No? I'm used to being acknowledged; of course it bothers me. The only reason you could possibly have to think otherwise…"
He took a half-hearted swing at L, who ducked reflexively.
"…would be if you still think I was Kira. Kira didn't care if no one knew who he really was."
"An excellent observation. You're right, of course."
This time Light put more force behind his swing, but L had been forewarned and was able to block with both arms. He snaked a foot out, catching Light off-balance. Light tumbled backwards away from the railing, but as he fell he grabbed at the loose material of L's white cotton shirt--the detective really did wear the same clothing for every occasion, he'd looked so out of place next to the black-suited men and elegantly coiffed women inside--and they fell together, landing in a tangle on the hard wooden planks.
Lying on his back, looking up at the sky just beyond L's right ear, Light thought that maybe he could see a star after all. That yellowish light to the left of L's shoulder. Although the light was a little too steady; perhaps it wasn't a star but a planet. Venus?
"Are you going to let go of my shirt?"
"Hmm." Light forced his gaze away from the sky, but couldn't bring himself to look at L. He looked down at his hands instead, and noticed that in addition to L's shirt, he was also gripping a forearm. L was half-covering him, balancing on an elbow to the right of Light's ear and a knee to the left of Light's legs. His other knee was…
"Only if you let go off my leg first."
"An impasse," L said. When Light finally brought his eyes up to L's face he saw that L had been watching his all along. From this close his eyes dominated his face, and Light thought that he could detect faint discolorations in the imsoniac bags underneath them. His eyes were shining in the darkness, something unfathomable reflected in irises so black they matched the pupils.
"I'm not Kira," he said.
"I don't think you are," L replied.
"I wasn't Kira, either."
"You can't prove that," L said. "You have to admit that is evidence against you is stri-"
Light moved up five centimeters to cut him off. He was immensely gratified when, a few seconds later, L settled against him, the hand with the elbow moving to cradle Light's head.
When they broke apart an intermittent time later, L said, "Seventy-five percent."