Case Closed Fan Fiction ❯ Welcome To My World ( Chapter 61 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

Chapter Sixty-One
Welcome To My World
Heiji drifted slowly back into consciousness. It had been so hot, and there had been so much pain. Then it had been cold, too cold to feel the pain. Now it was warm and soft. A bed. Yes. Was it a hospital bed? He must be in hospital because of that burning poison. But if he was in hospital, did that mean that he was still alive?
He opened his eyes, blinking a couple of times as he focused. He wasn’t in a hospital room. This was his bedroom, wasn’t it? But something was wrong. It felt… odd…
“Heiji?”
Kazuha’s worried face popped into his line of sight. Her eyes were full of tears and there was a bandage on her left cheek.
“Heiji?” she said again, her voice trembling a little. “Can you hear me?”
“Kazu… ha…” he said, and stopped. He had been about to ask her if she was all right, but there was something wrong with his voice. His throat felt fine, just… different…
Untraceable…
The fragment of a voice drifted through his mind, but he couldn’t tell if it was the voice of the cold-eyed man or another.
“It’s really you?” Kazuha said, her voice wobbling even more.
“Who else?” Heiji muttered, trying to sit up, but wincing as his ribs throbbed. “Dammit… did that cold-eyed bastard break one?
“Don’t move,” Kazuha said. “You’ve got bruised ribs, but not broken, thankfully… I’m glad yer fever broke, you were tossin’ and turning all night… we came back here after Otou-san found me, but by the time yer Otou-san found you, the blizzard had really kicked up and we kinda had ta stay here…”
“Are ya… all right?” Heiji muttered, still wondering about his voice. Not just that felt strange, it was all just… wrong…
“I’m fine… uh…” Kazuha was fiddling with her ponytail, as if avoiding asking something. “It’s really…?”
“Why do ya keep askin’ that?” Heiji asked hotly. Kazuha looked down for a moment, before leaning over and picking up a mirror lying next to her futon.
“Well… `cause…” she said nervously, holding up the mirror.
Heiji stared into the emerald eyes of a six-year-old.
You aren’t the first nosy kids we’ve silenced…
Oh, shit.
The four adults were woken by words yelled by a voice that sounded far too young to know them.
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What the-!” Kaito thought, jerking behind a corner as he saw a black car pull up in front of the office tower. It wasn’t the car that made him hide- it was the driver.
Snake.
Small world.
The man who got out, wearing a black trenchcoat and carrying a suitcase, wasn’t Snake, but one of his subordinates; Kaito recognised him, having seen him a couple of times before on heists/attempted assassinations. A sniper.
Reminding himself that he was in disguise and therefore unlikely to be recognised, he crossed the street- he was uncomfortable with being in front of the Tokyo Met HQ anyway- and slipped into the office building, Poker Face hiding a moment of quiet panic as he passed the car. But Snake didn’t notice him- in fact, he drove away. Resisting the urge to chase the bastard, Kaito followed the sniper.
He’d picked a good day to sneak into the building; in fact, he didn’t have to sneak at all. A crowd entered the same elevator as the sniper, allowing Kaito to get into the same elevator unnoticed, as part of the crowd; from their chatter, he gathered that the company inhabiting several floors of the building had just expanded and taken on over a dozen new employees, and was celebrating today.
So the sniper figures that nobody’ll notice another unfamiliar face…” he hid a smirk. “Or two.
They all got out on a crowded office floor, where music was playing as people milled about; the sniper moved silently through the crowd, and Kaito followed closely, unnoticed through the throng. “Besides, he’s not expecting to be followed, so he doesn’t look… elementary mistake…” Eventually they reached a staff bathroom. Each stall had a high window over it, letting light in. Kaito stepped into the stall next to the sniper, pulling out a mirror and using it to see over the gap in the top of the stall. What he saw chilled his blood even if it didn’t surprise him; the man screwing together a sniper rifle with a silencer.
He ran out of his stall, picking the lock of the next one quickly and easily; he burst into the stall, grabbing the man’s arms, just as he fired.
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“What the hell?” Heiji muttered, winding down, still staring at the mirror. He reached out to touch the glass, as if it might just be an old photograph, but the dark-skinned little boy tapped back. “Holy hell… this is…”
“I guess ya really are Heiji,” Shizuka said tremulously. “Ya got his vocabulary, anyways… but… how?”
“What happened, Heiji?” Heizo said sternly. “How are… you…?”
“It’s Shiyaroku,” Heiji gasped. “Shit, it’s actually…”
“Shiyaroku?” Heizo asked sharply.
“Heiji… what happened to ya?” Kazuha asked. “Those guys… did they…?”
“People don’t just shrink,” Kazuha’s father said sharply.
“Normally, nah,” Heiji said, unable to tear his eyes away from the mirror, as if it would clear up and show him the face of an eighteen-year-old instead. “Most people given that stuff die… there’s somethin’ about apoptosis, I don’t follow it all, but th’ end result is a horribly painful death an’ a corpse with no trace a’ the stuff in it. Unsolvable murder, worked every time… except fer twice. Three times now, I guess…”
“It’s a poison?” Heizo asked. “And there are others like this?”
“Yeah,” Heiji said, trying to stop his brain from going “holycrapholycrapholycrap,” “It’s called… APTX 4869, I think. Oh, shit…”
“Is there a cure?” Shizuka asked.
“Not yet there ain’t,” Heiji sighed, running his little hand through his hair, “but I ain’t heard from Kudo or that freaky scientist girl lately, so dunno…”
“Heiji, deep breath and start from the beginning,” Heizo said. “Who else is alive?”
“Kudo,” Heiji said. “Kudo’s the first one who survived… the second one was the girl who made the stuff.”
“Kudo-kun shrank?” Kazuha asked in surprise. “Is that why he left?”
“He never left, Kazuha,” Heiji said, still staring at his reflection. “How the hell did Kudo get used to this?” “Not that `e knows it, now he’s got amnesia…”
Kazuha’s jaw dropped. “Conan-kun?!
“The scientist who made the stuff’s in Tokyo,” Heiji said.
“Then we’re heading out there as soon as the storm clears,” Heizo said firmly. “I’ll find some pretext, though it’ll be difficult since you’re still officially missing… until then, can you tell us the whole story?”
“As much as I know,” Heiji sighed. “Can ya put the mirror away? It’s freakin’ me out. An’ I hope that girl’s had a breakthrough while I’ve been outta the loop, `cause I sure as hell ain’t goin’ through grade school again…”
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Aoko doodled listlessly on the back of her notebook. She was still worried about Kaito, even though the last time that she’d called him he’d insisted that he was doing fine, and his wrist had healed up pretty well though he was keeping the brace on it to be safe. But she was getting lonelier every day without him; Keiko kept complaining that she was dozing off in class, daydreaming. Her father wasn’t around much either- even less than usual. Something to do with the Kid case, he’d said. Now that an actual heist had been announced (It had been all over the papers this morning, and Kami how she missed seeing Kaito sitting on his desk, reading the latest on Kid and grinning like the idiot that was), she wasn’t sure that he was making it home at all. It just left her feeling so lonely
“Hakuba Saguru?”
She glanced up, looking just as surprised as the British boy did as a secretary appeared at the door.
“We just got a call- can I speak to you for a moment?” she asked nervously. As he stood up, she added, “Ah, you may want to bring your things…” His eyes narrowed suspiciously, but he packed his things up. Aoko felt a terrible wave of worry. If they wanted him to bring his things, then he’d probably have to leave… and they only asked that if a student’s relative was in hospital or…
Sensei continued the lesson after Hakuba had left, but Aoko wasn’t listening, instead watching him through the little glass window in the doorway. He looked stern and expressionless as usual for a while, but then, to her surprise and fear, he turned deathly pale, his eyes widening, looking more shocked than she’d ever seen him. She stood up, ignoring sensei’s remonstrations, heading for the door.
“Nakamori-san, please sit down! You too, Koizumi-san!”
Aoko glanced over to see Akako also making her way to the door, her face grim and paler than usual. They both ignored the teacher, stepping out into the hall. Hakuba jumped as they opened the door, looking more shaken than Aoko had ever seen him.
“What’s happened, Hakuba-kun?” Aoko asked worriedly.
“Who has passed?” Akako asked, and few would have detected the tiny tremble in her voice as she asked. Hakuba blinked, not in any mood to be shaken up any more, then swallowed and spoke in the faintest voice that Aoko had ever heard from the normally overconfident detective.
“Chichi-ue,” he said. “It was a sniper. He was shot through the head an hour ago.”
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Shit. Holy shit. Damn it!
Kaito’s fists clenched, but he resisted punching the wall. He’d scraped himself up enough struggling with that damn sniper, and the second he’d gotten the gun off of the son of a bitch he’d pulled out a little pill and before Kaito or any of the office workers crowded around him could stop him he’d swallowed…
Well, now the police had their murderer, one who was hardly going to give any evidence to the contrary. But it had been too late. He hadn’t been able to stop the murder.
He hadn’t realized that there’d been another.
And he’ll be able to destroy the evidence…” he thought, clenching his jaw. Then he ran, pulling out a capsule of sleeping gas for the first unlucky cop that he came across. “No way. This isn’t going down like Tou-san’s murder. I’m not letting anyone else go through that shit. Especially… not a friend.
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“So it’s true…” Ginzo gasped, staring at the photographs. It had been barely over an hour, but investigations moved fastest within a police station… though if the Shiratori case was anything to go by, they were also easiest to waylay.
There was the dead man lying in the toilet cubicle. There were the three spent sniper shells. There were a number of handgun bullets shot out of the superintendant general’s office window as he and his deputy returned fire, though all would probably never be found; they would have fallen into the road, into gutters, so on. There was the broken window, completely destroyed by both sniper and handgun fire. There was a broken glass, hit by a sniper bullet. And there was Superintendant General Hakuba Keiso, a bullet in the back of his head.
“The doctors doing the autopsy are checking that the bullet matches the sniper rifle now,” another pale-faced officer said. “According to Yamashiro-keibu, the first sniper shot hit the glass. Both he and the superintendant reflexively returned fire, he said, but the second shot…”
“There’s three spent shells,” Ginzo pointed out with a frown.
“It seems that a man tussled with the sniper in the bathroom,” the officer replied, “and the gun went off then… the third bullet wasn’t found in the bathroom, only the shell, so either it went out of the window somewhere too… or it’s in the man who attacked the sniper. He seems to have vanished. The sniper took a cyanide capsule when the man took his gun from him, it seems. A lot of the employees of the office handled the gun when pulling it away from the dead man and keeping it out of the way, so there’s just a mess of fingerprints… we have no idea which might be the attacker’s.”
“I see…” Ginzo growled, fisting his hands. “Dammit. Has anyone contacted the Superintendant’s…?”
“His wife has been called and is flying in from England tonight,” the officer said. “His son’s school has been called…”
“Right,” Ginzo said, storming downstairs. “Dammit! We needed his position and patronage to safely investigate these bastards and take them down… did they… know that…?
“There’s been another one!”
“What the hell?”
“What is this, a sniper infestation?”
“More snipers?!” Ginzo demanded, running into a group who were questioning Megure-keibu.
“These ones got away,” he growled. “Sato-kun and Takagi-kun were shot at near Tokyo Tower… by the time any officers got up there, whoever it was was long gone.”
“Two sniper attacks in a day!” Ginzo raged. “What the hell is going on?!”
“Both people involved in that “special investigation,” you realize,” Megure muttered. “What is happening is that we’re onto something and we need to finish it before it finishes us.”
“All right. So how are Sato and Takagi? Fatalities or injuries?”
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Wataru was rolling out yellow tape for the perimeter around the alleyway with the unfortunate corpse when one end flapped loose. Reaching up to grab it, he saw the window of an apartment across the road- and the silenced sniper rifle poking out of it.
“Sato-san! Get down!”
He didn’t hear the shot- of course not, it was silenced- but he felt the bullet burrow into his back as he reached for Sato. He felt more shots scrape past him. Sato screamed. Was it anger or pain? Oh Kami, had she been hit? Wataru didn’t know… his vision was fading out…
“Takagi-kun!”
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IT IS DONE! Excluding the introduction and conclusion, it comes in at just under 90 chapters. Wow, this is long… anyway, now that it is complete, that means… DAILY UPDATES! 😀 ♥
Can’t tell if you thought that was good or bad, A Midsummer Night’s Dream…
It’s confusing, but Heizo’s a pretty levelheaded person, Kairi922, and he’s had several hours to mull it over, so, y’know, not freaking out too badly… (I kinda skipped that :P) Thank you!
Not surprising that Kogoro’s so pissed, eh, JapaneseAnimeFreak16? XD well… deaths have begun… KEEP NICOLE AND KAYLA AWAY FROM MEEEE! Send `em after Sake! Yuusaku’s a cool character ^_- I like writing him, since he does have a lot of secrets here… well, I’m a big fan of Agatha Christie, particularly the Miss Marple books. I also like Christopher Brookmyre, though his are VERY gritty murder mysteries, and a lot of the jokes’ll probably go right over your head if you don’t have at least a passing knowledge of British politics and who Celtic and Rangers are… The Arsene Lupin books by Maurice LeBlanc too, of course. Finally managed to find a few volumes and I LOVE `em! It’s from the legend of Kaguya-Hime (look it up on Wikipedia under Princess Kaguya or the legend of the bamboo cutter), a very famous Japanese fairy tale about the princess of the moon who lived on earth. The important part of the legend to the riddle is the end, where she returned to the moon to reign as queen. (This legend is actually the main inspiration for Sailor Moon.) She watched over the world from the moon, so of course, she can’t see us when the moon is “gone” at the New Moon, right? Thus, the new moon is a blind queen.
COOKIE! *luvs Kayla Edogawa* XD I hope you’ve found a connection. Yeah, I think Kogoro would have made a conscious effort to drive his head through his feet if Ran hadn’t stopped him… XD Heeere’s Chibi-Heiji! I still can’t decide whether the bomber is the daughter or the surviving climber… I can’t figure out what the shirts mean T_T either way, I shall join you on your pilgrimage of pain if Shuu dies again… I hope you and your mom’s friend feel better, it sucks to be ill on holiday T_T Tardis bags! Awesome! XD
You want me to shrink Kaito too, Mel72000? XD I think the poor guy’s got enough on his plate right now… (yeah, yeah, mea culpa, but still…)
There you go, Sunny Lighter ^_- XD
I don’t get why they bothered changing the names myself, Marie Ravenclaw. It makes no sense, especially in cases where the names and the kanji for them are vital… or why they chose such utterly toolish names… (MACE FULLER?! As if poor Nakamori-Keibu doesn’t have ENOUGH problems…) I can’t figure it out either… I generally fail at figuring them out… T_T Secrets are coming out all over the shop, aren’t they?
But of course, Pretztailfan95 XD ahh, but he’s never remembered Shinichi’s name anyway, I’ll be impressed if he starts now… XD Does it? 😕 Daily updates, Pretz-chan! There shall always be jam tomorrow! XD You uncaring person T_T XD Cool! Like I said, I’m happy for you! ^_-… NOW WHY WON’T ANYONE SUB MOVIE 13?! DX
I live to torture you, Desperatembrace… XD It came from my internet being buggered for a day… XD lift with your knees, not with your back… XD
Yay! Sharishima’s a Princess Bride fan! I can rarely find people who know what I’m on about whenever I reference it T_T Let the terrors of a mini-Heiji commence! XD They’re working to a tight deadline, and things are starting to tip out of their favour… Well, Heizo’s generally a very composed person. If he freaked, I’ve skipped it XD Hm, mini-Hakuba…. XD I think she will, too, to Ran’s evident joy 😀 Did you guess right? I think Yukiko would’ve completely broken down again if he hadn’t recognized her even slightly… I think Akako and Kaito both tend to skew people’s perceptions of bizarre… XD 702 chapters in under 200 words… I’ve killed someone off THIS chapter, though…
Bingo, KageNoNeko ^_- although there’s some setbacks too…
I do not claim to own any of the characters in Meitantei Conan. They are the intellectual property of Aoyama Gosho. All characters, couples and locations, if Canon, will be faithful to the manga, so if you’re into fics with weird pairings like Shinichi and Heiji, the back button is at the top there. The fic may not make sense if you have not read up to chapter 698, which you can do at a site called (read between the lines) O/n/e/ma/n/g/a, but I advise you to buy the official Tankoban novels (up to volume 30 are out in English at the time of writing) so that Aoyama-sensei can afford to continue gracing us with his imagination. Now, I hope you enjoy the fic! (If you don’t, please see my previous comments re the back button).
Liquid Amnesia
Loss