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Change of Heart

Chapter Text

In such a short time, Izaya’s world had fallen apart.


Why did Kine have to bring him to a hospital? Why couldn’t he have let Izaya die? In the raven’s mind, anything would be better than his current existence. Laying in a hospital bed, his arms wrapped in hard casts, legs unable to move, stomach throbbing with pain, and mind a vortex of darkened thoughts.


He was alone… So, so very alone. Nobody visited him, but he had expected such a thing. Why would anyone visit him after all the pain and chaos he had caused? Yes, Izaya had finally acknowledged the truth… What else could he do when the truth was all he could think about?


Shizuo had been right to beat him until he was black and blue… He had been right to hate Izaya from the second he met him. Shizuo had never been the monster… It had always been Izaya.


Those things people had always said about him… They were all true. Izaya was a monster, a bastard, a psychopath, a flea… Yes, just a parasite on the planet., one that should have died a long time ago.


Why did Simon have to save me? He wondered sadly. Why couldn’t he have let Varona pull the trigger… But that was a foolish question, he knew the truth, the universe wanted him to suffer.


The injuries he had gotten, they only further confirmed the truth. He was weak, pathetic, he was nothing like a god. In fact, he was probably the furthest from that. He was human… A fragile, easily breakable human… And after his fight with Shizuo, that truth was even more obvious.


What was also obvious was how horrible of a person he was. He had used people, destroyed people, all because of a sick delusion that he had come up with. The teens, Kadota and his gang, that child, Celty, and even his one and only friend… No, he didn’t have the right to call Shinra his friend. The underground doctor deserved so much more than him…


Izaya's jumbled mind, having finally pieced together the facts, pulled him into a dark place. Shizuo was right, everyone was. He was a monster, he was evil. He found that he was hating everything about himself more and more. He didn't deserve the pity, he didn’t deserve anything but suffering.


Shizuo wasn't a monster, he had saved the city from one.


His vision became blurry, and he felt something wet slowly slide down the side of his face. It was tears… It seemed that the harsh truth which he had finally acknowledged had broken the dam he had built up inside his mind. The emotions that were supposed to be kept behind it rushed forward, and Izaya found that he couldn’t handle it anymore.


Izaya decided that he was finally going to take Shizuo’s advice, he was leaving. He was leaving Ikebukuro, leaving Tokyo, and going far far away. Then, when he was in a place where he couldn’t hurt anyone else, Izaya would let himself fade away and die.


After everything he had caused, it was the least he could do.


— — — — — —


Since Izaya had realized the truth, he found himself falling further and further into a dark pit of depression. All he wanted to do was fade away and die, but it wasn’t that easy.


The doctors and nurses watched him closely, and he was hooked up to an IV drip almost all the time. He knew that his plan wouldn’t happen if he stayed here, he needed to get well enough to leave the hospital and then he could off himself. That also meant he had to stay healthy enough to make the doctors happy.


So, he did just that. He ate just enough of the bad hospital food to survive, did all the ridiculous checkups, and let them do all the surgeries on his arms. He had constant nightmares about the fight with Shizuo, his stabbing, many different illusions created by his head that had him waking up in a cold sweat. Sometimes he even had panic attacks or flashbacks when even the smallest thing (like someone with blonde hair) set him off. It had been months already, but he still couldn’t leave.


None of his family had even acknowledged his hospital stay, so the doctors didn’t feel comfortable letting him out until he could take care of himself. Since his arms were practically shattered by Shizuo, he knew that it would still be a while yet. And even when he got out, his arms would be weak, would cause him pain for a while, and he would have large scars on his arms for the rest of his life.


There was also the issue about his legs. From the moment he woke up, he had been unable to walk on them at all. His doctor had said that the injury was psychosomatic and if attended therapy he would likely recovery all the way. Izaya listened, and then said he would think about taking that action after he left the hospital. He was pretty sure the doctor knew he was lying.


Thankfully, none of this will be much of a problem… He thought every day. My arm and leg injuries won’t matter when I’m dead… That was all his life had become, he had fallen apart and didn’t have the will to put himself back together, all he was doing was waiting for the freedom to die. It was a depressing life, one that he was perfectly fine with living.


But everything changed when he met her.


It had been on a sunny afternoon in the summer, the birds tweeting in the trees outside the window and now a cloud in sight. Izaya had been laying on his bed, his despondent eyes staring out the window when he heard the sound of his door sliding open.


Even though he knew it was most likely a doctor or a nurse, no matter how many times that door opened, he still couldn’t shake panic that rose up in him. Who was it? Had Shizuo finally tracked him down? Was this the end?


But then he heard footsteps, nothing like the ones he recalled… They very tiny ones, footsteps that sounded like they belonged to… No, that can’t be it. Curiosity got the better of him, and Izaya turned his head to look towards the door.


Instead of a medical worker or him, it was a little girl. She had short brown hair that barely reached her chin, big green eyes that stared right into Izaya’s, and very skinny limbs. Her hospital gown, one decorated with an animated cat, was only hanging onto the scrawny frame thanks to the string at the neck and the clothespins on the back. In her right arm was a stuffed dog that had purple and white spots, and she held onto it like a lifeline.


Izaya’s seemingly ever present frown deepened on his face. Who is this child?


As if she had known what he was wondering, she smiled and waved her free hand. “Hello!” She called,”I’m Yachi!” She trotted over closer to the side of his bed, that smile still as wide as ever.


The raven flinched at the sudden closeness of the child and leaned away the best he could with his condition. “Uh…” He weakly began, and then forcefully continued,”Hello…”


The little girl, Yachi, pouted at this response and crossed her arms. “Ya’ Know… When someone says their name, ya have to say it back. That’s what my nurse says!” She explained.


“Oh…” Izaya breathed out, looking back at the still open door before he replied,”My name is Izaya…”


Instantly, that frown faded away and Yachi’s face beamed brightly once more. She got as close to the side of the bed as she could and then reached up, dropping the stuffed animal onto the edge of the bed. “This is for you,” She said,”The nurses was saying that you were sad. When I’m sad, my doggy always makes me smile, so you can have her for a little.”


The young man in the bed felt completely confused. He had never been approached by a child like this before, and he certainly never interacted with them outside of his old job and old schemes. Yet this one child had come all the way to his room simply because she had heard he was ‘sad’. Why?


Those emerald green eyes were still staring at him, sending a jolt of emotions through him. He looked down at the dog, then back at the girl. “Thank you…” He croaked,”I would take her but… Well, I can’t really move my arms much right now.” He motioned his head towards the casts as he spoke.


Yachi’s eyes widened, as if she hadn’t thought about that before, and she quickly snatched the dog back. “S’okay! We’ll do it a different way!” She said, and then hesitated. Placing her hand on her chin, she thought hard for several seconds. Finally, an audible gasp came from her as she jumped up. “I have an idea!”


She took the stuffed dog’s head in her hand and lifted it up again, pressing the dog’s nose gently against his cast and making kissing noises as she did it. Once that was done, she ran around the bed and did the same to his other cast.


“There!” She proudly declared, panting a little bit. “My friend’s mommy always says kisses make owies better!” She grabbed the bed railing, lifting herself up a bit and asked,”Do you feel better now?”


Izaya’s eyes widened in surprise, and a warm feeling he didn’t recognize coiled around his frozen heart. She… She was trying to make me feel better? To help me? But why? I don’t even know her…


A strange feeling started to build up in his chest. Izaya didn’t know what it was, he had no idea how to name it… But he didn’t want it to go away. He let a small smile rise up on his face as he quietly replied,”Actually… I do feel better. Thank you, Yachi.”


The child in question grinned even wider and let out a peal of happy giggles. “See?” She said,”I told ya’ it would work!”


“Yachi!” A shrill voice exclaimed, making both Izaya and the little girl jump in surprise. Looking over towards the door, they saw a frazzled looking nurse with a deep frown on her face.


She quickly stormed into the room and grabbed the child’s hand, pulling her to the door. “What are doing here?! You were supposed to stay at the garden! I’ve been looking all over for you!” The woman yelled.


Yachi frowned at her and turned to Izaya, pointing towards him. “I was jus’ trying to make him feel better!” She exclaimed,”He was sad an’ I was helping!”


“You can’t just barge into rooms and bother people,” The nurse, who was obviously not listening, chastised,”Say sorry to this young man right now!”


Izaya lifted his head up a bit, cringing in pain as he frantically said,”No, no! It’s okay, she wasn’t bothering me at all. It was nice, actually, to have a visitor…”


The nurse turned towards him, surprise evident on her face. Yachi looked at Izaya as well with a large, thankful grin on her face. Turning back to the woman holding her hand, she exclaimed,”See? I told ya so!”


The woman sighed and knelt down next to Yachi, and gently said,”I’m sorry sweetie, I should have listened. Thank you for keeping Mr. Orihara company.”


“Can I visit him again?” Yachi asked eagerly, bouncing on her heels.


The nurse looked a little hesitant to give an answer, so she instead forced a smile and said,”I’m not sure, Yachi. I’d have to talk to the doctors about it first.”


The child’s happy bean turned into a frown, and she looked towards Izaya sadly. Such a sight made Izaya feel upset as well. Wait… Why am I feeling like this?!


“Well… Can he come to the garden with us?” He heard Yachi ask, leaning up on her toes with puppy dog eyes.


He saw the nurse’s face become thoughtful, and she looked towards him. “I don’t see why not, as long as Mister Orihara wants to come with us,” She casually said.


Yachi turned those puppy dog eyes to him, and Izaya felt as though he couldn’t refuse. He smiled again and whispered,”I think some fresh air would be nice.... I wouldn’t mind coming.”


“Yes!” Yachi cheered, jumping up into the air twice and then grinning at the nurse with victory plastered on her face. “Can we go now?”


“Just a minute, I’ll contact Izaya’s nurse and they’ll meet us there, okay?” The surprised nurse responded, gently taking Yachi’s hand and leading her out of the room.


As she paged the other nurse, listened to Yachi chatter, and walked down the hall, she found herself in awe of what had just happened.


All the nurses knew it, that Orihara Izaya had slowly been falling apart. He had been the same way since he first arrived, he had never even gone outside his room (despite the many offers of wheelchairs), and he had never smiled. But after one interaction Yachi… That changed.


Such a little thing, and yet it had such a big impact.


— — — — — — —


The garden had been a completely different experience for Izaya. The sun shining down on his pale skin, the fresh air felt much better in his lungs, and Yachi’s excitement seemed to be influencing all those around her.


It became a routine. Every couple days, Yachi and Izaya would go out to the garden and spend time together. It didn’t seem like much to the outside eye, but it was doing wonders for both of them.


Yachi finally had someone who she could play with and chatter, and Izaya always seemed to listen to her. The raven never told her that her ideas and stories were silly, which she appreciated very much.


For Izaya, it felt like Yachi was the push he needed. The cold ice that had frozen his heart was melting away slowly but surely, and he found himself looking forward to and enjoying Yachi’s company. She cared about him, even though nobody else did. Maybe… Maybe that meant he wasn’t that bad?


During these visits, Izaya’s curiosity also started to return. It took him a few weeks, but eventually he found the courage to ask.


She picked several flowers, placing them at the edge of Izaya’s wheelchair and on his legs and said,”You’re the flower shop, Okay?”


“Okay,” Izaya responds easily, smiling down at her. Yachi grins at this and scurries away, carrying the stuffed dog with her all the way. Once she is far enough away, he turns to look at his nurse. “Can I ask you some things?”


The nurse smiled at him (but then again, she had been smiling since she first heard he wanted to go outside) and said,”Sure, what’s on your mind?”


The raven looked back at Yachi for a second, and then asked,”Yachi is staying at the hospital, isn’t she?” He got a nod in return, so he continued,”All by herself? Where are her parents?”


“She… Well…” The nurse cringed, biting her bottom lip and then moving closer to him to whisper. “She’s an orphan, she lived at one of the nearby orphanages until she got sick when she was three and a half. They dumped her here, and refused to have anything to do with her for the past six months.”


Izaya frowned at that. “How did they get away with that?” He demanded,”Surely the news should have gotten out by now.”


“We’ve tried to tell people, but that orphanage is run by a very wealthy family,” The nurse responded, just as angry about the situation. “Every person who we’ve tried to tell has been paid off, and if some of the nurses say too much than they suddenly don’t have a job anymore.”


The young man’s eyes widened, shocked that they were getting away with it. They have all this money, enough to do all this, but they dump Yachi? Why?


He looked back at the nurse. “You said that Yachi is sick… What do you mean by sick?” He questioned.


Almost instantly, the nurse’s entire being grew sad. She sighed deeply and shook her head as she whispered,”The poor girl… She’s so young, nobody should have to…” She gathered herself, looked at Izaya, and said,”She’s a cancer patient, stage three.”


Izaya felt his heart drop, looking towards the child. “Will- Will she survive?” He questioned,”Why hasn’t she gotten treatment?”


The nurse seemed to be just as sad as him. “She won’t survive without treatment, but the orphanage still has custody over her and refuse to pay… There’s nothing we can do except make her feel happy while she’s still healthy,” She sadly admitted.


No, no, no… Izaya thought, looking in between Yachi and the nurse. She’s… She’s only a child, why are they being so cruel? This orphanage, they could save her and yet they won’t… They’re… They’re monsters!


Even though he had only known the child for a few weeks, the realization that she was being left to die turned that warm feeling into something stronger, something fierce. He couldn’t just sit around and let this happen to her. He needed to do something, anything.


“If she got treatment… Would she live?” He asked frantically, not even caring about the curious look that the woman gave him. He had to know, he needed to know if his idea would work.


Although she hesitated before answering, the nurse eventually responded,”Most likely, yes. But that is if she starts getting treatment now. With every day that passes, her chances of survival get slimmer and slimmer. I’m sure you’ve noticed.”


Izaya had, and it hurt him to admit it. Yachi often got exhausted much earlier than usual and was even paler and skinnier than before. And even though he knew Yachi didn’t really know what cancer was, she obviously knew something was going on.


But she shouldn’t have to… She shouldn’t have to worry about this stuff, she should just be able to go outside and play. Yachi should be able to be happy… She deserved to shine bright.


A wave of determination filled Izaya, and he strongly declared,”If nobody else will, then I’ll do it. I’ll pay for her treatment.”


The young nurse gasped, her eyes wide and filled with hope. “Are you serious!?” She questioned,”You want to- You’re going to… But… It’s so much money!”


“I don’t care, I can spare the money,” He replied,”She deserves to live on, not to die like this. I want to help her.”


The shocked look turned into one of happiness. She nodded, eagerly saying,”I’ll tell the doctor as soon as I can! Oh, he’ll be so excited! Thank you, Mister Orihara, you’re an angel!”


Her words struck Izaya’s heart in a strange way, one that he wouldn’t understand for many years. Me? An angel? He wondered. No, that couldn’t be farther from the truth… I don’t deserve such a title.


The truth of the matter wasn’t that Izaya was a good person, he didn’t think he could ever redeem himself. It wasn’t for him, it was all for Yachi, because even though he had only known her for a few short weeks she had pulled him out of the darkness he had trapped himself in.


Now, Izaya felt like he would do anything for her.


— — — — — —


After all the paperwork was done, and Izaya had paid for everything, the treatment was ready to begin. The nurses had explained everything to Yachi, and she seemed to understand and was ready for the treatment.


One thing that surprised Izaya (But didn’t surprise the nurses) was that Yachi specifically asked for Izaya to be in the room with her during her appointments.


The first day of her treatment finally arrived after what felt like an eternity, and Izaya was right next to her from the beginning.


Yachi was sitting in a large, comfy hospital bed with her stuffed dog next to her and an IV already in her arm. She shifted anxiously underneath the covers and then reached out, grabbing gently at Izaya’s shoulder. “Mister Izaya… I- I’m scared,``she admitted shakily.


“Eh?” Izaya asked, tilting his head. “Why are you scared? You’re going to get better, remember?”


The child sighed and jerked her head in a quick nod. “I know, but… I’m still scared… The doctors are using needles and- and they said it would make me sick and- and…” She stopped, blinking away the tears that threatened to fall and looked up at him. “What if I die?!”


Izaya’s heart was twisted in such a painful way he was surprised he didn’t actually collapse from the feeling. You shouldn’t have to think about this, you shouldn’t have to know what death is yet…


The raven rolled himself as close to the edge of the bed as possible, letting the little keep her grip on his shoulder. “Yachi,” He firmly said, waiting until he met his eyes to continue. “I promise, you’re not going to die. You’re going to get better, and I’ll be with you every step of the way.”


Looking up at him with those big green eyes, she asked,”Does that mean that you’ll get better too?” At his surprised look, she continued,”Will your arms get better and- and will you walk again?”


Izaya cringed at that question, being reminded of exactly how he got those injuries. “Well… My arms will, but I’m pretty sure my legs are stuck this way, Yachi…” He awkwardly said, hoping that she would drop the subject.


Instead, Yachi frowned at his attitude. “No! Your legs gotta be better too! I can’t get better without you!” She firmly declared, crossing her arms. “No wait, I won’t get better unless you do too! I don’t want you to be hurting anymore, mister Izaya.”


Raven had previously felt fine with wallowing in his own self pity, and he still believed he deserved the pain he had gotten, but Yachi’s words filled him with that warm, comforting feeling again… All of a sudden, the reasons he had for avoiding physical therapy were thrown out the window.


Giving the child a comforting grin, he replied,”Okay, Yachi. I’ll do my best, and that way we can get better together. I promise.” The wide grin he got in return to that promise made whatever would happen during that therapy completely worth it in Izaya’s eyes.


Right after he gave his word, the nurses came up to the bed and began to get Yachi ready for her chemotherapy. She started to get nervous again, and Izaya found himself quickly trying to find a way to help calm her down. Suddenly, an idea popped into his head.


“Hey, Yachi, have you ever heard of a Dullahan?” He asked, keeping his happy smile on his face.


The little girl looked at him curiously, almost completely forgetting about the needles and the treatment she was about to be subjected to. Shaking her head, she whispered,”No… What’s a Dul’han?”


“They’re a magical fairy from Ireland, and they’re very special. I actually knew one before I came here,” He explained,”Would you like to hear some stories about her?”


Yachi gasped and nodded eagerly, her smile climbing back onto her face. Izaya quickly dove into his stories about Celty, making sure to avoid talking about the more violent parts and focusing on the more magical aspects of the woman.


The little girl listened intently the entire time, only interrupting to squeal about certain stories or ask many questions at a time, losing the fear she had held about her current situation. Izaya stayed for the entire duration of her treatment telling stories, even when his voice started to ache from the sudden use.


Eventually, Yachi started to grow tired from the busy day. Instead of resting on the pillows, she leaned her head against Izaya’s shoulder, her free arm wrapped around his upper arm in a possessive grip. Even after she had completely fallen asleep, Izaya didn’t dare move her. She needed her rest and… Well… Spending time with her like this, it just felt right.


-- -- -- -- -- -- -- --


About a month into Yachi’s treatment, things had been progressing pretty well. Izaya was improving at his own pace. Two weeks after Yachi’s treatment began, he was finally freed from his casts. His arms were still very weak from disuse, but he was working on fixing that.


He signed up for physical therapy for not only his arms but also his legs. After only two weeks, he was able to stand and walk short distances again. It was a slow, painful, and practically hellish process, but he was proud of his progress… And Yachi’s too.


No matter what time or how long, Izaya made sure to be there with her. Sometimes he would tell stories, sometimes she would, sometimes they watched the television, and other times they simply sat and enjoyed each other's company. Although the doctor had been worried about Yachi’s chances of survival, there was officially a high chance of her beating the cancer.


While Yachi’s progress was very good, there were some aspects of her treatment that the child wasn’t enjoying. There were many small things, but two very major ones. The first was the way she would feel sick after every session, and the second was hair loss. It has started off slow, but now chunks were falling out very quickly.


For a while, Yachi seemed bothered by it. But as she slowly lost more hair, the effect was easy to see. She would drag a blanket with her and cover her head, and wrap herself in blankets whenever she was in a bed. It was hard to watch, so he decided to do something.


It was a few days later when he decided to give the gift, a little while after her latest round of chemo. He slowly walked his way towards Yachi’s room, holding the bundle of fabric that was his gift with him and using the wall for support.


When he got to the room he saw Yachi sitting on her bed, eating her breakfast and holding that blue blanket over her head still. She looked up from her food and beamed at him. “Mister Izaya!” She cheerfully exclaimed,”Good morning!”


“Good morning, Yachi,” He replied calmly, sitting in the bed next to her and sighed in relief at the pressure taken off his legs. “How are you feeling?”


Poking at the rice with her chopsticks, Yachi replied,”M’better now. Mister Doctor says that I won’t get sick for a little bit… Just a little bit…” She cringed, obviously not looking forward to her next treatment.


Izaya felt upset that she had to feel that way, but quickly brightened up. “That’s great!” He exclaimed,”And you know what? You’re doing so amazing with this, I decided to get you a present!”


That got the child’s attention. She dropped the blanket and crawled to the edge of the bed. “A present?” She asked excitedly,”For me? What is it? What is it?? Can I see it?”


He placed the bundle on the bed and let Yachi unravel it, revealing the very fur coat that he always wore before The Fight. The child stared at it curiously and then asked,”Is this yours?”


“It was, but now I’m giving it to you,” He declared,”It’s very special to me, and so are you, so I want you to have it now.”


Yachi gasped in shock at his words, quickly pulling the large coat close to her and putting it on. The article of clothing was way too large for her, but she seemed excited nonetheless. Grinning, she raised her hands up, sending the sleeves flailing as she yelled,”I love it!”


Izaya chuckled in response and said,”You missed the best part, silly.” He leaned against the bed and reached behind her, flipping the hood up over her head. It sunk down over her eyes and tickled at her nose, making the little girl giggle excitedly.


Overwhelmed from the gift, she spun around and pulled Izaya into a tight hug. Izaya froze in surprise, not at all prepared for the gesture. He hesitated a moment, and then let himself return the hug.


“Thank you, thank you, thank you!” Yachi whispered against his shoulder. “Thank you for everything Mister Izaya!”


Tightening his arms around her the slightest bit, his eyes burning with tears, Izaya quietly responded,”Anything for you, Yachi.”


That warm feeling was back, but this time it seemed it was there to stay. Though the emotions he had once confused him, the raven finally realized what that feeling. It was love.


Love for the new light in his life, the one that had pushed away the darkness.


— — — — — —


After five long months, it was finally over. Yachi’s treatment was finished, she was cancer free.


Izaya got to watch as she proudly rang the bell that announced it to the hospital, and several nurses and even other patients applauded her. The girl smiled proudly, finally free of the burden she had carried for almost a whole year.


But then, as freeing as that smile had been, it was replaced with a sadness that Izaya had never seen from her before. It worried him so much so that he turned to Yachi’s nurse to ask a question and found her in the same sad state. “What’s the matter?” He asked, not able to handle it anymore.


The nurse sighed, turning away from the scene and motioning Izaya to come closer. Once he was right next to her, she said,”Now that she’s healthy, she’ll be discharged back to the orphanage… The same ones that abandoned her here.”


Izaya’s heart stopped for a second, he had completely forgotten about that. The last several months had been such a blur of emotion and medical treatments that he had pushed that memory aside.


“I… I see…” He whispered, looking back at the sad little girl. “And I’m guessing if they were willing to dump her here, they’re probably not the kindest orphanage.”


The nurse shook her head. “No… Of course, nothing has ever been concrete. They are very good at paying people off. Even if we tried, they would find a way to stop us from revealing the truth. There’s nothing we can do…” She sadly admitted.


The thought of Yachi- Sweet, loving, happy little Yachi -going back into those people’s hands made his blood boil. But then, it went further, and he imagined what other torment that children at that place must have gone through. Now that he knew, Izaya knew he had to do something.


With determination in his voice, he firmly said,”You guys might now be able to do anything, but I can.”


Hope returned to the nurse's eyes. “You can!?” She questioned,”How?”


“I have my ways,” Izaya distantly responded, leaning closer to her. “But I’ll need a bit of help. Where’s the nearest place to get a computer?”


The nurse seemed to catch on, and quickly gave him the information along with directions to it. Izaya thanked her, and then headed back to his own hospital room, sat down and thought long and hard.


Was he really going to do this? This plan… It would change his life even more than it already had. Was he ready for such commitment, such responsibility?


But when he remembered how Yachi’s happy face could brighten up anyone’s day, her kindness, her imagination, and her incredible courage, he knew what he had to do.


In the early morning, Izaya snuck out of the hospital and went to a run down computer shop. He bought an older laptop and went to a nearby coffee shop to do his work. Even though he was a little rusty, it only took him about an hour to track down the information he was looking for and print it all out.


Once he was done, he contacted the orphanage on his cellphone and threatened them with the information he had found. It detailed many of their underground deeds and abuse against the children, including photos and pictures. So much evidence that covering it up would be impossible.


The owners panicked and quickly tried to placate him with money, Izaya refused. He told them his demands, and promised not to reveal the information as long as he got what he wanted. To his relief, they agreed.


He returned to the library and got the fax from them, the exact papers he was wanting. Once he made sure everything was in order, he opened up the small laptop again, found the addresses for all the major news stations in Japan, and sent all the incriminating evidence anyways.


By the evening of the same day, the scandal was all over the news. The police had shut down the orphanage effective immediately and were planning to relocate all the children to more accredited orphanages. There was an even better silver lining however. Thanks to the scandal, many couples were now stepping forward to adopt the children who were being moved.


Izaya watched the downward spiral with relief that his plan had worked, and found himself shocked when the news channel on the hospital television referred to the anonymous tipper as an angel. Me? An angel? He thought in confusion.


Well, he certainly wasn’t a monster… At least, not anymore. But he also wasn’t an angel or a god like he had once believed. He was merely a human, a human who didn’t want to see anymore of those children be hurt.


Huh… How strange… Izaya thought as he turned off the television. He had at one time always distances himself from society, pretending to be something other than human. And now, instead of observing them, he found himself happy to be one of them.


This realization spurred Izaya again, and made him gain the courage to do one more important thing. He erased his presence online, removing any sign of the Informant Broker he used to be. He destroyed his credit cards, got rid of any accounts in his name, then he threw away the laptop, deleted all the contacts from his phone before throwing it away, and even deleted his Dollars account.


He was no longer the great informant broker of Ikebukuro. He was Izaya, just Izaya, and knowing that felt good.


But before he could move on, there was one last thing he had to do.


— — — — — —


A couple days after he caused the scandal, he finally went to visit Yachi. Although her treatment was over, she was still stuck for a few days longer while they finished up things and made sure she was ready to be exposed to the public once more.


The second she saw him, her eyes lit up. “Izaya!” She exclaimed, leaping from the bed and running over to him. She hugged him tightly, and Izaya was quick to return it. “I missed you,” She quickly added.


“I missed you too,” Izaya agreed, despite knowing that he had been too busy to visit her right away.


They held the embrace for a while longer, soaking in each other’s presence. In the end, it was little Yachi who spoke first. She tightened her grip and quietly asked,”What’s gonna happen to me?”


Izaya frowned, feeling a little confused. “What do you mean, sweetie?” He questioned, pulling out of the hug and holding her shoulders.


Yachi shuffled her feet and then sighed, finally admitting her worries. “I saw it on TV, the orp’nage is gone,” She explained,”Where will I go? Are they gonna take me to a different one?”


Izaya could see her hands shaking and felt sympathy for the girl. Yachi was justifiably terrified about being moved to a new orphanage after her experiences at the last one. But thankfully, the little girl- His little girl wouldn’t have to worry about that anymore.


Leaning back, Izaya sighed. “Well… While that was a possibility, it isn’t anymore. I’m not letting them take away my daughter,” He declared.


Yachi took a second to register his words; When she did, her head jerked up and she gasped. “D- Daughter?” She hesitantly whispered.


Izaya smiled and reached into his pocket, unfolding the papers that the orphanage had given him. They were official adoption papers, letting the whole world know that Izaya Orihara was the father of a little girl named Yachi.


He read the words aloud to the child and then handed them to her. She stared at them with wide, tear filled eyes and then hugged the paper close to her chest. “You… You adopted me?” She stuttered our, looking up at him hopefully.


Izaya gave a gentle smile and then nodded to her question, his throat refusing to let him speak in words. The simple gesture was enough for Yachi.


With a happy sob, Yachi threw herself forward again and hugged Izaya close. Sobbing into his shoulder, she exclaimed,”I love you, daddy!”


Izaya felt his own eyes burn with tears and hugged her back once again, whispering,”I love you too, little one.”


— — — — — — —


A couple days later, Izaya let out a huge sigh of relief as he finished discharging himself and Yachi from the hospital.


Once he finished, he looked at the little girl with a smile. She was bouncing up and down excitedly, wearing a brand new outfit but it could barely be seen over the fur coat she was wearing.


Chuckling a bit at the sight, he looked back at the lobby and saw both Yachi’s nurse and his own nurse with happy grins of their own.


Izaya turned towards them and bowed his head. “Thank you guys… For everything,``he said.


“Yeah!” Yachi agreed, letting go of Izaya’s hand and giving both of the nurses big hugs. “Thank you so so so much!”


The nurses giggled in response, and Yachi’s nurse merely responded,”You’re welcome little one! I’m just glad to see you’re all better now!”


While they chattered, Izaya’s nurse headed over to the raven, giving him a tight hug. “You’ve changed so much, all for the better,” She said,”Please, be proud and confident about all you have accomplished, especially about that.”


Izaya returned the hug and firmly nodded. “Thank you… I will” He promised, feeling appreciation for all that she had done for him.


The woman smiled happily at that and then said,”Now go out there and be happy, live your life to the fullest.”


The raven nodded to her words and gave one more goodbye while Yachi ran over to him, waving goodbye to her own nurse.


Izaya took Yachi’s hand in response, which she squeezed in response, and they left the hospital together. Both breathing in their first freedom filled gulp of air.


As they walked down the sidewalk, he turned to look at his daughter. “So, now that we’re finally out, where would you like to go?” He asked,”We can go wherever you want.”


Yachi thought about it long and hard, rubbing her chin and then finally shrugging. “I don’t care, as long as I’m with you, daddy,” She said.


Izaya smiled lovingly down at her, his heart overflowing with affection. “Well then, I guess we’ll just have to have an adventure, right?” He suggested.


“Yes!” Yachi exclaimed in return, jumping up and down. “Adventure! Let’s have an adventure!”


The young man found himself also getting excited thanks to Yachi’s enthusiasm. “Alright then, let’s go!” He said, heading in the route of the nearest train station.


Izaya found a nice train that would take many prefectures away from Japan, with several stops along the way for their little adventure. He paid for the tickets and then settled down with Yachi in their booth.


As the train took off, the sun was already setting. It had been a long day, and it had taken its toll on the both of them. The excitement of the day and the gentle sounds of the train made it so Yachi quickly fell asleep against Izaya.


The raven looked down at the little girl, making sure to wrap his arm around her so she didn’t accidentally fall. He leaned back against the seat, staring at the beautiful stars.


Izaya couldn’t help but wonder... How on earth could he have gotten so lucky? Even after everything he had done, here he was. He had a daughter, a family, a chance to start a new life… All thanks to the kindness Yachi had shown him.


Any thoughts of returning to his old life were gone, all that he cared about now was raising his little girl. I promise Yachi He thought. No matter what comes our way, I will always be there for you.


He leaned down and placed a single, gentle kiss on his daughter’s forehead, and then allowed himself to follow her into the realm of dreams.