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Zelle

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Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, future sexual content, slash, etc.

Pairing: future Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

Flashbacks/thoughts are in italics.

A/N: Using the Japanese way of names (mentioning last name first, first name last.)

A/N 2: Saibancho = judge/the chief justice.

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Chapter One - Sagen Sie kein Übel

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"Investigation is pending. The accused, Nishizono Manabu, will be held in the custody of Sapporo Prison until such a time as either trial or complete freedom is decided."

"Dismiss-."

"Wait!" The voice comes from, not the glasses wearing person whom had been attacked but the blond headed lawyer. "Surely, the evidence presented-"

"That is enough, Kobayashi." The harsh voice of the judge cuts in. "You are not council on this case and as such, have no say over any of it."

"But, Saibancho -"

"It's okay, Kenya." Satoru's quiet voice cuts in. His eyes are cool, but not cold, as they take in Kenya's angry and frantic ones. He gives a small smile of encouragement.

"Are you sure?" Kenya asks, voice low, leaning down to look at Satoru (he had jumped out of his seat at the judge's declaration.)

"Escort Kobayashi out and let him calm himself down." The judge, an older man in his fifties, shakes his head in disgust. "Youth is too eager these days to latch onto anger and not let cooler heads prevail. As I was saying-" He stops, when he notices Satoru, hand raised. "What is it, Fujinuma-san?"

"Ah. I don't mean to interrupt, Saibancho-san. May I approach?"

"Of course. Well. At least one youth here has some calm about him." The judge gestures him forward.

He rolls out of the observers area, towards the judge, feeling the burn of two eyes searing deep into him, feeling the heavy gaze of Yashiro Gaku, who had not uttered one word since being captured.

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"Are you crazy?" Kenya exclaims. And it is yet another shock for him; the second time, in not just as many minutes, but ever that he had seen Kenya lose his cool like this. He seems to recognize where they are at this time, and lowers his voice, hands on either side of Satoru's wheelchair arms, looking at Satoru in obvious concern. "This can't be good for you."

While he appreciated the concern, it was getting difficult to deal with the irritation with his present situation. He had already made good strides in his rehabilitation and would-hopefully-be walking soon enough. All the same, he knew it wasn't fair to blame them for thinking of him this way; to them, he was not much more than the eleven year old boy who had played Detective, gotten in way over his head and ended up in a coma for fifteen years.

They didn't know of the Revivals, or that he was older than he seemed, mentally. He knew this, but it still could get under his skin, when treated like a child.

He moves his hands, pushing gently at Kenya's (he didn't have that much more energy yet to do more than that-but for what he wanted to do, required no energy of that sort on his part.) His friend moves back, with a bit of a sheepish smile (he too seemed to realize how unusual it was for him to act this way. And yet, with the situation, it wasn't a stretch for him to react so.)

"He won't talk to anyone." Satoru points out. And it was true; Yashiro had spoken nothing to anyone since being taken away in handcuffs on the roof of the hospital. His last words had been spoken to Satoru and Satoru alone, as they both were perched upon that precipice. "And you think the prosecution won't go forward without evidence from his own mouth, right?"

I can't live without you.

The words have rattled around in his head since then.

And what had he said before Yashiro had said that?

The only one in this world who knows the real you is me.

"You think you can get him to talk?" Kenya asks. It wasn't said in any sort of arrogance; merely a question.

"I think no one else but me can."

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He takes in a deep breath as the officer goes over the rules.

"He'll be handcuffed and chained so he cannot leave his chair. If he makes any threats, call us immediately and we will escort you out. Do you have any questions?"

He shakes his head in the negative. Kenya had wanted guards placed inside but Satoru had vetoed that immediately; Yashiro would certainly not talk then, if others were around. They had taken every safety precaution they could think of. But he wasn't worried about Yashiro hurting him physically; the two of them had already established upon that rooftop how that was something that wouldn't ever happen again.

No, it wasn't violence that Satoru wondered, worried, about.

The feeling of deep eyes that burned as they watched him come into his mind now.

The door opens with a loud clanking sound and he lets out the breath, steeling himself as he rolls forward.

The door closes behind him.

Silence.

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The cell was sparce, which surprises him. With his influence and money, he had been sure that Yashiro would have asked for some creature comfort of some sort-ahh, there. A small pile of books on the small bed that lay towards the back of the cell. But other than that, it seemed alike the other cells that Satoru had passed on his way here. He seemed to be afforded some privacy-being in a cell away from most of the other population-but they often did that (so Kenya had said) with those whom were either in the midst of trial or potentially going to trial. Until a judgment one way or another, this would be the place Yashiro Gaku (now Nishizono Manabu) would reside.

A decently sized metal table took up most of the room in the middle, the sunlight from the window streaming onto its edges. Yashiro sat at one of the chairs (the other had been thoughtfully set against the wall, so Satoru could wheel up to the other side of the table without a problem), eyes set in a thoughtful look as he looks at the window.

It had been fifteen years, but it felt like those melted away as he looked at his former teacher. His hair was different, but other than that, it felt like the man hadn't aged at all. Another reminder of the past, his many pasts (both failed and nearly completed) but it's eased a bit with their current surroundings. This was no car, with a Satoru in a younger body (though nearly as weak currently, from recovering from his coma), left to drown in the freezing waters.

He was the free one now and Yashiro-

As if hearing him, the older man finally turns his head and Satoru has to steel himself-with great difficulty-at the look in his eyes.

His eyes all but gleam as they take in Satoru and he can almost hear what Yashiro says with those eyes:

I see you, my beloved adversary.

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He fidgets at the table for a few minutes, in the continuing silence. The only sound the faint flick of a page as Yashiro looks at a book. After that first initial look, he seemed to be content to ignore Satoru in the room, which surprises him. After all that had occurred, he had figured that would be the last thing that Yashiro would do-ignore him.

He glances at Yashiro, whose lips purse, brows furrowing ever so slightly as he looks over a page, concentrating intently. Yashiro still seemed content to speak no further. Why? He had thought, though maybe it was arrogant of him, that the man would speak as soon as he saw Satoru. But he hadn't.

Was he waiting for something? But if so...what was he waiting for?

He glances at the door. It held a small window on it, but even if a guard had deigned to look, they wouldn't see anything from the vantage point it was at. So sight was not the issue here. If that was the case, then what else could it be? With both the thickness of the walls as well as-ahh.

That was it.

"I'm not wearing a wire." He says. Kenya and some of the other lawyers thought it a good idea, but he had also shot that down. Yashiro was smart, very smart; he wouldn't be taken in by such a flimsy ploy to talk.

A pause. Yashiro closes his book, setting it on the table and once more looks at Satoru. This time he has a bit more time to prepare, but still feels like the breath is knocked out of him at the sight of it.

His eyes widen when Yashiro smiles.

It is not the malicious smile when he admits to his guilt as kidnapper and killer. It's a simple smile, as if the person giving it is genuinely happy to see the person they are giving it to. And Satoru doesn't know how to handle that.

Yashiro looks at him expectantly and he fumbles with something else to say, to fill the silence.

"I told them you were too smart for it."

Yashiro's smile widens, sharpens.

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He looks down at the book that sat near Yashiro's hand and has trouble reading the title as it's not in Japanese-or even in English. Yashiro notices him looking at it and smiles again, this time a mischievous glint in his eyes, as if guessing Satoru's thoughts.

"Fünfzehn jahre Ich habe auf dich gewartet, Spice." Yashiro finally says, in a hoarse voice (but his accent was impeccable; apparently he had learned in the years Satoru had been in a coma. Or perhaps he already knew beforehand. Yet another question for the man), obvious that he hadn't spoken in quite some time. "Dieses Loch Sie gefüllt...es blutet ohne dass Sie."

Was it something to do with the book? German then. Although he did not speak the language, he recognized it. That must be what the book was in. So he was saying some passages from it then? He does it best to look interested (which wasn't all that difficult) so Yashiro will continue to talk-even if it is in a language he does not understand.

Yashiro's hand, as bound as it was by the handcuffs, strokes the book, looking down at it.

"Ich war krank? Bin ich geheilt?" Yashiro looks back at him, licking his lips. "Und wer ist mein Arzt gewesen?"

"Is it you, Spice?"

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"So what did he say?" Kenya asks, pouring a cup of coffee to Satoru who takes it gratefully.

He takes a long sip before answering.

"He-didn't, really." He says, looking down at his drink. "He kept speaking in German."

Kenya lets out a soft sound, causing Satoru to look up from his drink to look at him. The young lawyer looked surprised.

"I didn't know he knew German." Kenya says, bewilderingly. "No note of it was made anywhere, even in the notes we got from where he worked. Though I suppose those he could have doctored up if he had the time to do so..."

"I didn't either." Yet another mystery revolving around the man named Yashiro Gaku, the man who had named himself Nishizono Manabu. Why Manabu? It was the same kanji even, as Gaku. So it wasn't like he was really hiding.

He takes another drink, pondering.

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"Nothing."

"Hmm?"

"Nothing. He hasn't said anything since you left. Honestly, I'm surprised he talked at all; he's been dead silent since being captured." The prison psychologist, a man named Takakura Akira, says with a sigh, sitting back against the folding chair. A day had passed and it was Satoru's second day to visit Yashiro. "Though you've a tie to this case..."

He looks away from the man's assessing and piercing gaze, absently straightening out his shirt. Learning to put on his own clothes without assistance had been next on his list. He still needed help with some of the tasks, as he lacked the strength to do it all on his own, but he was making progress.

He looks up as the prison guard-the same from the day before-comes into the small waiting area and he takes the back of Satoru's chair, wheeling him out. He ignores the cries and screams from some of the cells. Most were quiet, eerily so, but a few were rowdy; he wasn't sure which bothered him more. Finally, they get to the back, the lone cell away from everyone else.

The door opens once more and once more he heads into the lion's den.

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He's in a different set of prisoner garb this time; dressed in soft-if inexpensive-white clothes. It made his black hair stand out all the more. And he is reading again. Not from the German book from last time-though Satoru notes it's next to his right side within easy range to pick up if need arised. Instead he is reading from-

Satoru lets out a choked noise as he gets to the table, when he notices what it is that Yashiro has in his hands. Yashiro looks up, a smirk touching the side of his mouth and Satoru flushes.

In that copy of Young Ace was a set of new one shots by veteran and newbie manga-ka's...which included a one shot he had submitted (and been approved.)

"Most of the work is trivial garbage," Yashiro says dismissively, looking down at the large magazine. His voice already sounded much stronger than yesterday. "Trying to appeal with the same flash and lack of substance; breasts, upskirt shots, and a harem of vapid headed girls who all love the same boy."

"But," he says, a gleam in his eye, looking up at Satoru now. "This last work-Jikan to sono jaaku. The protagonist who has to suffer through time, who can only grasp at ever dwindling straws to try and rebuild everything around him. It's atmospheric. It has character. It's special, Spice."

He smiles at Satoru and it hurts to look at it. He hurries to find something to say.

"Why Spice? What is that-" He stops as Yashiro holds up a hand, a hand that clinks with the sound of the metal handcuffs.

"Answer a question of mine and I'll answer one of yours. Only fair. Right, Satoru?"

He looks at Yashiro, no sign of malice or anger or madness in his face. He was an amazing actor, something that he shouldn't forget. Something he wouldn't forget. But he had also seen the complete and utter truth on the man's face, upon that roof. The openness he had never expected to see-the openness that the man had never expected to give.

"Hn." He waits for whatever the man has to ask, braces himself for whatever dark and disturbing thing that could come from his mouth.

Yashiro's smile widens.

"What suckers were your favorites? I was always partial to the cherry."

Satoru stares at him, eyes wide.

Yashiro laughs. And laughs and laughs. No malicious tone...just laughter. He thinks that startles him more than what he actually expected.

"Why Spice? What significance does that have?"

"Ah-ah. You didn't answer my question, Spice."

He flushes again and looks away, pushing up his glasses on his face.

"Cherry too." He says in a sulking tone. "And the grape."

The older man chuckles. "Good boy." He says, sounding pleased. "Thank you."

He ignores the praise-and thanks-moving back to his question. "Spice?" He inquires again.

It's silent for a few moments and he turns to look at Yashiro, who looked lost in thought, one hand on his book.

"It was the name of something special to me as a child." Yashiro finally says.

He waits for more, but nothing is forthcoming. Oh well, that was fine; the other man gave more than he honestly expected him to give, so it was a good a start as any.

"Thank you." He says honestly. Honesty with honesty. That would be the way to learn things from, and about, Yashiro Gaku. That much, he felt, was certain.

Yashiro tries to reach forward, surprising Satoru, but the shortness of the handcuffs stop him. He shows the first sign of frustration Satoru has seen in him since that time on the roof. He grits his teeth for a moment, eyes clenching shut, before he lets out an obviously frustrated breath.

He opens his eyes to look at Satoru and the look in them is-

He's startled by a knock at the door. It opens slowly and carefully.

"Time to go, Fujinuma." The muffled voice was the guard from earlier's.

Yashiro is quiet right until Satoru is nearly out the door.

"Until next time, Spice."

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A/N: My first foray into ERASED/Boku Dake ga Inai Machi, but after watching the anime I just HAD to create a fic. More chapters will be forthcoming. :3 For Yashiro/Satoru especially; there needs to be much more of this pairing! I've loved all the fic for the pairing I've read so far. Even though the fandom is small so far, there are some really outstanding fics and authors already doing an amazing job.

I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, future sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: future Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

Flashbacks/thoughts are in italics.

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Chapter Two - Nichts sehen

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It takes another three days for him to be able to see Yashiro. Not due to the courts, his own slowly strengthening condition, or even Yashiro himself.

It was his mother.

She hadn't been around during the times he had went to see Yashiro, as she had been having to work and he had hoped to be able to keep this conversation off for as long as possible.

He's in the midst of buttoning up his shirt when she comes stalking in, her eyes filled with more fire than he had seen in a long time. Since coming out of his coma, she had been mostly calm and quiet and almost infinitely patiently with him. But apparently she can bite her tongue no longer.

"What is this, Satoru?" She demands.

"What's what, mom?" He asks, trying to affect innocence, even though he already knows what she's asking about.

She affixes him with a glare, hands on her hips, and he instantly feels like eleven again, getting scolded by her.

"You know what, Satoru. Why, why would you go and see that man? After everything that has happened!"

He looks down at his shirt, doing the last button. He puts his hands on his lap, shaking his head.

"He hadn't talked since he got arrested. Not until I decided to talk to him." He tries to explain to her. "He still won't talk to anyone else." He looks up at her now, a fierce look in his eyes. "If I can get him to talk, to admit to things, to admit to anything else he has done...how could I not, mom?"

Her eyes soften as she looks at him, approaching him and kneeling at his chair. She strokes his head and his eyes close briefly at the touch. When he had lost her the first time, he had been beyond distraught and had thought he would never remember what her touch felt like. Then the Revival had taken over once more and he had been lucky enough to have her with him again.

She was his rock in this; she had taken care of him for the past fifteen years, determined to keep him in as good a shape as she could while he was in the Coma, had been by his side the whole time, taking care of him even now, when he had to regain his strength (both physically and mentally.)

Still, it was difficult sometimes. She-especially so-still saw him as a child, as did many others in certain ways. If only he could explain Revivals to her and to his friends, but they would just look at him like he was crazy, or with pity. They would think he was still out of it from the coma and the trauma of the situation of fifteen years prior.

He couldn't try and convince her. Not now. Not like that anyway.

"But you're not...you can't be ready for this-" She stops as he holds up a hand, eyes widening as she sees the serious look in his eyes.

"Maybe I'm not completely ready," He admits, but he pushes on. "But I'm as ready as I need to be. I have to do this, mom. Please understand."

She looks at him, the serious look in his eyes and sees that inner strength in him, reminded of the strength she saw from him as a child. She closes her eyes briefly and nods.

"But Satoru," She says. "I want you to take a few days to think about what you want to do next and gather more of your strength."

"Mom-"

"Please?" She asks, but the glint is back in her eye and he knows she will (either politely or not) get her way on this.

He nods in acquiesce. He'd give her that much. Considering what he was having-what he chose to do...he could give her that much.

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Still, the days don't pass easily. It wasn't even the weakness of his limbs that was the issue for him. He had learned to deal with that as he slowly worked on improving his strength so he could walk properly again. No, it wasn't that.

Everytime he gets a free moment (when not working on walking and getting stronger, when not visited by his mother, Kenya, or some of his other friends, when not idly working on ideas for another one shot or continuation of his published one shot for Young Ace-as his first was greatly liked) he thinks of Yashiro.

The man's behavior-ever since admitting that he was the one doing the killings, anyhow-wasn't quite normal, of course, but it had still been something resembling that. But this? His radio silence, as it were, was quite unusual. Satoru had been sure the older man would have used his well developed charming nature to try and captivate the people who held his fate in their hands.

Yet he hadn't. Instead he had stayed quiet and had only recently talked...to Satoru.

And only to Satoru.

I can't live without you.

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"If it's too much for you, just let me know." Kenya tells him again.

He shakes his head, giving Kenya a lopsided smile. "I think you've told me this already...like five times now."

Kenya blushes a bit. "O-Oh. Sorry. It's just..." He hesitates now. "Satoru-"

The guard comes into the small entranceway that led from the main part of the building to the part where Yashiro was held in.

"Fujinuma-san? Are you ready?" The gruff looking officer asks.

He nods and starts to wheel himself to him when Kenya stops him with a hand on his shoulder. He looks up at him. Kenya's face is grim, his eyes filled with something Satoru cannot comprehend.

"Be careful, Satoru." Kenya whispers.

He gives Kenya's hand a friendly squeeze and nods and wheels off. He is appreciative of the strength he was already gaining. The doctor was pretty pleased with things, saying that if he kept on this track, he'd be onto crutches before he knew it. He looked forward to that. It was the little things you missed, took for granted. Something like walking became a luxury for him now.

The door shuts behind them with a clang of finality.

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He once more traverses the way down to Yashiro's cell and he marvels that Yashiro doesn't snap just from the proximity of such loud people. Mind you he was furthest away from the populace, but surely he had to hear some of the sounds that the prisoners made sometimes.

The guard leaves him at the door-though not without a glance at the room-before closing it behind Satoru. He swallows, collecting himself, before heading further inside.

Yashiro is in navy blue prisonwear this time (was that the only other luxury he was allowing himself in here, besides the books? He hadn't seen any prisoners-save for the man-in different colored prisonwear), lying on his small bed, reading from the German book that Satoru had seen previously.

He rolls over to the metal table (only one chair sat there, Yashiro's, as Satoru was still mostly confined to the wheelchair) and waits. And waits. He looks at Yashiro, who seems perfectly content to merely read his book, once more ignoring Satoru. What was his game? Although he knew the man better than anyone else possibly could, he-

He stops, swallowing hard against the sudden lump in his throat. He did know the man, didn't he? At least, he knew him better than anyone else; had seen into the eyes of the man, seen the true man that lied there. He knew him.

But how much did he really know about him?

That remark, earlier, about what Spice meant to him...

"It was the name of something special to me as a child."

Maybe that was something he could continue with.

"Was Spice the name of a pet?"

Yashiro pauses in the midst of turning a page. He still wore his handcuffs, but these had a bit more give, just enough so he could turn the pages. He closes the book and looks over at Satoru now, his eyes gleaming with something he can't place. The man stands, coming over to the table where Satoru sat, waiting. He takes his seat with a surprising amount of grace, considering his position.

He sets the book down on the table, fingering the spine lightly as he looks at Satoru.

"How did you travel through time?" Yashiro asks him in return. Satoru looks at him. Yashiro smiles. Once again, not a smile of malevolence (like the smile he had seen when Yashiro had shown his true colors those fifteen years ago) but one softer, yet it didn't feel fake, nor forced. "Only fair. Right, Spice? Shall we be like those in the books and on screen? What do they call it? Quid pro quo? I think that only fair. If I shall be talking, then I want something in return for it. And I believe that my information is the more valuable to those whom you're working with."

"And mine?" He finds himself asking without thinking.

Yashiro's brow raise and he looks almost pleased. "Hmm. I suppose that depends on who you think your information is most valuable to." He shares a small, almost secret, smile with Satoru.

"That's one of my most valuable secrets." He tells his former teacher.

The older man's smile widens and his eyes gleam. "Then I have free reign to ask you something else then, Satoru?"

He hesitates briefly, but nods.

Yashiro leans forward, only slightly, but it still causes him to stiffen a bit involuntary in his chair. He can only wonder what question the man will ask him; what sort of dark or possibily perverse-

"Do you hate me, Satoru?"

His eyes widen at the innocuous question. Innocuous, but one still filled with some sort of intent inside of it.

"No."

He blinks and isn't sure which of the two of them is the more surprised at that answer.

"Do you hate me, Yashiro?"

"No, of course not." is Yashiro's immediate answer, his tone sounding almost insulted at the question.

"Have you ever hated me?"

Yashiro pauses now, looking thoughtful. "I thought I did, once, however briefly. When you kept foiling my plans."

"You wanted to kill me." He doesn't say this in malice or anger or anything else, really; just a general statement.

Yashiro nods. "I did. I thought I did. I tried. You know that. But then you revealed that golden truth to me and I-" He stops, looking lost in memories of fifteen years past. "I had to pull you out of that water, to save you then. I had to know."

"What?" He whispers.

Yashiro turns his eyes to look back at him. "Surely you knew, Satoru? Did you never wonder or learn who pulled you out of that water?"

"You-" He stops, shaking his head. "It was..."

He couldn't wrap his head around it. Yashiro's smile turns sharper somehow as he looks at him.

"Das Leben füllt das auf, was in dir fehlt. Weißt du was in mir fehlt, Satoru? Was mir die ganze Zeit über gefehlt hat? Irgendwie hast du... dieses fehlende Stück gefunden. Jenes fehlende Stück bist du. Ich habe die Welt als einen toten Ort gesehen, bis du Leben in mir erweckt hast. Du bist mein Sinn des Lebens."

He stares, stunned, as Yashiro leans forward and, very gently, to cup the side of his face, the jangle of the handcuffs the only sound in the room, save for their breathing (Satoru's racing, quickened and Yashiro's calm and almost soothing.)

"That is my answer, Satoru."

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I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, future sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

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Chapter Three - Moralität ist Heerden-Instinct im Einzelnen

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He is slowly becoming stronger and stronger each day, to his everlasting relief. The longing to get up under his own power was a strong one and-if his rehabbing was any indication-then it would be sooner rather than later when he could get around on his own once more.

Still, besides the happiness at his progress, he finds his thoughts twisted around one in particular; something unsettled in his mind that he can't get rid of, no matter how much he tries. It's become such a thorn in his head that he can't help the words that come out of his mouth the next time his mother comes to visit him.

"Did he save me, mother?"

His mother pauses in the middle of taking some bottles of water out of her bag. She places them on the stand next to his bed, looking at him with a brow raised.

"What are you talking about, Satoru?"

He hadn't meant to say it, despite the questions he had. Because it was so impossible to believe, but yet...but yet.

He licks his lips. "...Yashiro. Something he said the last time I spoke with him."

That stops her cold. "Satoru, you know better than to believe anything he says. He's many things, liar included."

He knew that. He did. And yet...

"Who saved me from the waters, mother?"

She blinks at him, looking disturbed. "Satoru-"

"Who saved from the waters?"

"Satoru, stop, you don't-"

"Who-" His voice was starting to raise, unable to stop himself. "saved me from the water, mother?!"

"Yashiro!" His mother screams. Her face contorts into one of agony. "He pulled you out of that water!" She grabs at her head. "He's also the one who put you in there, Satoru!"

But that part doesn't matter. He knew that already. It's the rest that makes his head spin with it, with the thought. Yashiro had been telling him the truth. He had been, as he had said for a long time now, telling him the truth. He closes his eyes, rubbing at the side of his head with the heel of his hand.

"Satoru," His mother says in a low, hunted voice. Her hand touches his shoulder, startling him, forcing his eyes to look at her. "Listen to me. Don't let Yashiro get to you. I told you this was not a good idea. He is hurting you yet again. Stop speaking to him."

"I can't." He says immediately. He swallows against a suddenly dry throat, wondering just why he felt like crying just then. "And you know that I can't. It's too important."

His mother goes back to rifling through her bag, much more angrily this time, her lips pursed with obvious anger and distress.

"It's not so important that you get hurt, Satoru." She insists.

"I'm not hurt, mother. I'm..." He pauses, biting on his lip. "I'm..."

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He doesn't see Yashiro for another three weeks. Yashiro is swept in a few small meetings with what had to be very high priced lawyers and Satoru uses that time to continue his rehabbing, going at it with an intensity that surprises even himself. Each night he is left sweating profusely, body aching with effort, shaking to stay up and mobile. With each time he receives no reply to see his former teacher, he is in the rehab room, working harder and harder.

Three weeks in, he is resting on the floor (hard, but felt very refreshing after straining to walk even a few steps), trying to catch his breath when footsteps into the room surprise him. He sees a pair of slightly scuffed black shoes and his eyes trail up to see light purple dress pants, shirt and-

"What are you doing, Satoru?" Kenya asks.

He glances away, letting out steady breaths. "What do you mean?"

Kenya squats down a bit, to be a bit more on his level. "You're pushing yourself too hard."

He squints at Kenya, his glasses a bit skewed from where he had landed a bit hard on the floor. "How did you even know I was here?"

Kenya shrugs. "Your mother."

Ahh. Of course. She could be nosy like that sometimes.

"Nosy?" Kenya says.

Shit. He had said that aloud. He fixes his glasses and looks up at the ceiling as Kenya lays down next to him, one of the fans spinning lazily, a distant hum from some machine in another room making the floor feel like it was vibrating. Or-no, that was Kenya's phone vibrating. He's beyond curious to see what text Kenya had gotten, but can't find it in himself to be that nosy and look over.

"It's Yashiro." Kenya says finally, as if answering a question Satoru hadn't actually asked of him. "He's ready to see you."

Kenya stands and looks down at Satoru, with a look in his eyes that Satoru can't read. They were still friends, of course, but he had missed over a decade of Kenya's life, so it stood that there would be a gap there that would take time to make up.

"Satoru?" Kenya asks questioningly.

In response he holds up a hand and Kenya takes it, pulling him up carefully, helping him settle in his wheelchair. Kenya looks at him again and once again the gap between them leaves Satoru feeling helpless. He also feels bad. He lets Kenya push him out of the rehab room, biting on his lip to keep from accidentally blurting anything out. Because...because...

He felt almost happy hearing that Yashiro was finally ready to see him.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

As always. Kenya offers to come with him, come in with him. And as always he says no, denying him with a shake of his head and a friendly smile. Kenya smiles back, almost sadly, but nods and sees him off with a wave. This time is different, he notices, when he wheels himself to Yashiro's cell. There is no guard at the door that he can see. He would have said it was due to a shift in guard (which he had seen before), but before this, even when a guard shifted duties at Yashiro's cell, the other guard remained until the new guard showed up.

He looks at the door for a moment, brows furrowed. Was this some sort of rebellion on Yashiro's part, some statement he wanted to make to Satoru? Surely he didn't want to talk through the door? That left some sort of dissatisfaction in him that he didn't really want to look that closely at.

"Ahh, there you are, Fujinuma-san!" He glances over to see one of the usual guards-a youthful looking, thin man-running over to him. "Glad I caught you before you left." Oh, was he here to guard the cell now? "No, I came to give you this." Damnit all. He had spoken aloud again (he really had to stop doing that.)

The guard hands over a key and he looks at it in surprise. "This is for me?" He inquires.

The guard nods. "Yes. Part of what Nishizono-san asked I thin-ahh! Please don't tell anyone I said that; I don't think anyone is supposed to know that he asked specifically for you to have it."

He felt his head spin a bit at that statement but still somehow manages a steady nod and smile at the guard. "Thank you."

The guard bows and makes his leave, leaving Satoru to stare after him for a moment, before looking at the door in surprise. So that explained at least part of the meetings that Yashiro had been having; apparently he had been asking for more amenities (for the first time in a long while, as far as Satoru could tell.) The fact that he had asked for a key specifically for Satoru should probably have disturbed him, but it didn't. The disturbing fact was the fact that this didn't bother him.

He swallows hard and slides the key, watching the green light flicker on, a small beep as he opens up the door. He lets out a deep breath, gathering up his courage, and heads inside.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

The room is scarcely lit when he enters inside. When he arrives deeper into the room, only the light of both the small lamp beside Yashiro's bed, as well as the moonlight streaming from the outside, illuminates the room.

"Ah." Yashiro says, from his position near the window. He was standing at it, but from the position he was standing in, Satoru couldn't make him out completely. "I wondered."

Wondered what?

Yashiro's head glances more his way. What was that expression on his face? "I wondered if you would come at this time." Had he spoken his previous thought aloud or had Yashiro read him? "That you would come, even at this late hour, pleases me, Satoru."

Satoru feels his face fill up with heat. Yashiro wasn't wrong in the lateness of the hour. Yet Satoru had come first thing, at hearing Yashiro wanted to see him, versus waiting until regular visiting hours (the fact that Yashiro could have visitors during unusual times showed yet again the influence he was having, or had, with the courts.) What had Kenya thought of that? That had to explain the look on his face from earlier.

"Come, Satoru." Yashiro says, gesturing a hand forward. That must be a smirk on his face now, right? Even if he could only barely make it out? "Du bist die eine Sache, die ich nicht beißen werde."

He had been studying German too, in these three weeks in not seeing Yashiro; though of course he was by no means even close to being fluent in it yet. Still, it had been enough studying that he caught a bit of what Yashiro was saying. Something like 'You are the only one I will not bite' or something like that.

He rolls in, moving to the table, looking over to where Yashiro does not move. He feels his eyes piercing into him, looking away while he stumbles over the words he speaks next. "Aber ich...bin der, den du...beißen willst?"

Why had he said that? Why did he just say that? He looks down, unable to look up at Yashiro in the ensuing silence. The words Yashiro had spoken to him the last time they had met, combined with what he learned from his mother, that had to...it had to have affected him. But hadn't he proclaimed so much, so often, how much Yashiro didn't, and wouldn't, affect him? His mother worried over him, Kenya worried over him, and yet he still...

He's startled as surprisingly warm hands touch his legs through the thin cloth, eyes raising to look directly into Yashiro's, Yashiro who was kneeling in front of him, hands on his legs, looking at him with such an open expression on his face that it leaves him speechless.

"Immer," Yashiro whispers. Always. "Immer, Satoru. You are-" It's only when one of Yashiro's hands hesitantly moves near the side of his face that he realizes that the man's hands are no longer shackled. He drops his hand suddenly, as if losing the nerve. "Tell me, Satoru, what do you think of me now?"

His eyes widen beneath his spectacles. "What?"

Yashiro's eyes look at him almost beseechingly, as if needing to hear Satoru's next words. "What do you think of me, Satoru? Is it as simple as Kenya thinks of me, or your mother? Or of those who call themselves your friends?"

"Yashiro-" He starts helplessly. He looks away, before letting out a breath, squaring his shoulders. Speaking with an honesty that surprises him (surprised that it was, in fact, true.) "If it were...if it were as simple as that, for me, as it is for them, then I wouldn't be here right now."

Yashiro lets out a breath at that, as if relieved. He nearly jumps as the man's hands rub slowly on his legs, running soothing circles on them. It felt nice. His legs were often massaged as a part of rehab, but this felt even better than that. Surprised at himself and what he was feeling, he tries to jerk away, but Yashiro's words, more than his hands, keep him in place.

"Spice." Yashiro says.

"Why did you ask, Yashiro?" Satoru can't help but ask, still looking away from him, ignoring the pleasant feeling the man's hands had on him. "Why would you ask me that?"

"You know the answer to that, Spice." Yashiro says immediately, sounding insulted. "Why would you ask that? What did I tell you before, Spice? Because I meant it then and I mean it now and I will always mean it. And you know that."

I cannot live without you. Yashiro's voice, clear and honest, more honest, he knows, than the man has ever been before in his life.

I filled the hole in your heart. His voice, saying the words he knows with a hundred percent certainty are true. He didn't risk his life for nothing; he knew. He was Yashiro's reason for living, had been for a very long time. Yashiro had once tried to fill the unending void with blood and death and pain and it had been a twenty nine year old boy-man in a eleven year old boy's body who had given his life true meaning for the first time ever. Given meaning to someone who, by all accounts, should never been able to have found meaning in anything. But he had accepted Satoru, had latched onto him, had wanted...wanted...

He feels his face fill up with heat again. "Oh." He says softly.

"Satoru?" Yashiro questions.

How could he say it? He couldn't say it. But it was true, wasn't it? How naive was he that he would know he was Yashiro's meaning of life, that he filled the hole in his heart but not until now think about what that truly meant?

"Satoru," Yashiro says again, his voice turning husky now. "Look at me now, Satoru."

He finds the courage to look at Yashiro and peers into the man's eyes, no glasses on his face. He looked quite like he used to, to Satoru, back when he had been Satoru's sensei. He trembles as the man's hands move up to remove his glasses, setting them gently onto the table. He can't help but stare as Yashiro's hands, bare and warm, move to cup his face with a gentleness that he never would have expected from him.

"Spice." Yashiro says, with such an obvious seductiveness that he shivers.

He leans in and kisses Satoru. Instantly he's filled with fire and he can't help but moan into his mouth as Yashiro skillfully deepens the kiss, obviously full of experience at these things. But even then...it wasn't something Yashiro enjoyed until now, right? The thought fills him with a strange feeling in his belly. He kisses back, unable to stop himself, hearing Yashiro's answering moan in return, an almost sobbing laugh as if unable to believe it.

"Spice, Spice," Yashiro whispers, again and again, taking his mouth again and again, as if starved for it. His hand clutch Yashiro's shoulders, feeling helpless, yet more in control than he had in ages. He was wanted and his head spun with that fact, even more than the fact of just who it was that wanted him. A thought that should probably have disturbed him, yet he finds it doesn't in the slightest. "Satoru, Satoru..."

The kiss deepens further-and then something strange happens.

'Ahh, we shouldn't-" His voice is thin. His younger self? Certainly that was his eleven year old self's voice.

'But when else will I be able to see you, Satoru?" Yashiro whispers. He looked just like he did when he was Satoru's sensei. In fact, Satoru was sure he was his sensei here. 'I can be alone here with you now and no one think it strange." His mouth trails down Satoru's neck, making him let out a shaky moan. But it's Yashiro's words next that truly get to Satoru. 'I miss you.'

He looks into Yashiro's eyes, open and kind and filled with-with-

He pulls back with a gasp, hands pushing Yashiro away from him.

"What the-what the hell," He gasps. "What the hell was that?"

He sees a shimmer out of the corner of his eye, making him glance up. He stares directly into The Butterfly. But it wasn't blue this time, as it had always been during the many Revivals he had been through in his life (the Butterfly which he hadn't seen since Yashiro's capture.)

It was red.

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A/N: Ahhh! We're getting to the point I've been thinking about for awhile now! Should be...very interesting, to say the least! Thank you to all of you for your patience on an update! (To say I've been busy is...an understatement lol. Even ending a fic recently hasn't taken down my work load much; still working on like four ongoing works right now lol. But I will be working on this until it is finished! That much I can promise you! :D)

I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

 

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, future sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma, one sided Kenya Kobayashi/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

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Chapter Four - Ein Netz von meinem eigenen Design

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He frowns and blinks, but there is nothing there any longer. No Butterfly and nothing else happens.

"Satoru."

Except...him. The mysteries of what he may or may have not just seen are erased as he moves his eyes back down once more. He swallows hard and looks back across from him where Yashiro is waiting, patience in his gaze mixed with a hunger that he either cannot, or does not, hide. The expression on Yashiro's face twists into one he cannot acknowledge, not now. His hand extends out towards Satoru, making him push back in his chair, the full effect of what he had just been doing-and who he had been doing it with-hitting him hard.

Yashiro's expression shutters until it's back into one of neutrality. He stands and grabs Satoru's glasses. He flinches when Yashiro puts them back on his face, but his hands do not linger.

They feel cold now.

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He can feel the eyes of the therapist, Takekura Akira, on him, as always. One hand nearly clenches into a fist but he manages to keep from doing so. His thoughts had swirled around that one moment, for days now. Days. He hadn't see him in days. Everything that happened...it had been...

He hears the therapist sigh. "You don't have to talk, but I would like you to speak. Whatever you say will not go outside this room, as I've told you before."

Should he reach out? But...no, that was probably not the best idea yet? Perhaps-

"Did you see Fujinuma-san again, since the last time you were here with me?"

His head whips to look at the therapist, eyes narrowing. He wanted to strike the man for daring to say any part of Satoru's name. Ahh, but look, Satoru, strike, not kill? Isn't that progress! That must be something good in Satoru's eyes. Perhaps it would get him to even smile a little? No? Probably not. Too soon. But surely there must be something that he could do to get Satoru to smile at him again, like that smile he bestowed on him after completely upending his life with that one Golden Statement: In this world, the only one who knows the real you...is me.

Beloved Satoru, with his Golden words and passionate eyes. Fifteen years of waiting, of going through a perpetual cycle of Hell and Hope, of hope he would awaken (he had to! Yashiro was here, so he must!) and the utter despair and depression of the fact (as it felt then, during the dark void of waiting and turmoil and pain of waiting. Of Satoru being so very close, but not being there with him) that Satoru would never awaken.

Nothing had ever filled him with pain before that moment. He had recognized pain as a response, physically and mentally, but it had never truly bothered him in his life. Not when his brother would snap at him and hurt him. Not when his mother hanged herself. Not when his fiancee died. Not when his father grew weaker and weaker until he died. Not until...not until... Not until then. When he would gaze down at Satoru, ever growing Satoru, his ever sleeping beauty, could reach a hand to flit through his growing hair and there would be no response. No happiness or anger or sadness or joy or despair; no emotions reached to Satoru through Yashiro's touch, his presence there.

He could only watch.

And feel pain. Pain so deep and dark that he sometimes longed to gouge out his own heart just so he didn't have to feel anymore. Surely, he thought then, this pain would go away if he killed Satoru. If he no longer had to look at him-!

What a joke. The fact that he could think those things and not see the truth in front of his face then. His own naivety surprised and humbled him in many ways. Not until Satoru awoken, by then already having awoken things in Yashiro that he never knew slumbered within him. Not in over forty years of life had he ever felt anything, until then, until Satoru.

I can't live without you.

Until then he hadn't even know what it truly meant to live. The concept as foreign to him as English, as happiness, and as love. What did it mean for someone to be in pain or to be happy or to be sad? Those were things so utterly unknown to him, until a handful of words spoken on a rainy rooftop completely shattered what he thought he knew about the world, and himself.

For the first time in his life he could feel the rock in his chest beating. The staccato pulse a thump thump in his chest, his veins. He feels alive and everything, all at once, becomes new to him. And all he can do then, as Satoru completely changes everything that is Yashiro Gaku, completely wiping away anything that was the shell named Nishizono Manabu, leaving only him Satoru's Yashiro, is to try and rebuild himself from scratch. It was a process both invigorating and harsher than he could ever have expected-if he had ever been able to guess the kind of changes one person could ever leave on him.

The touch of Satoru's trembling lips-

A sigh. "Nishizono-san, if you would but talk to me. I could-"

Could what? What did a faceless person, a nobody, offer in the scheme of Yashiro's life to Yashiro? Nothing. A man of many words and thoughts, but none which could understand anything related to Yashiro Gaku, to the man himself. To what made him him. Only one had ever been able to navigate the impossible spider web maze and get to the deep and pulsing thing that was Yashiro. Only Satoru had. Spice, do you know how signficant that is? Do you know what that means to me? Do you know what you mean? In the grand scope of a faceless, uncaring world, he somehow found another person to see him across the infinity of nothing.

Spice, you are...

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He doesn't take any visitors for days, other than his mother, who refused to let him be alone for so long alone. But even then, her visits are infrequent, due to her work hours, which leaves Satoru a lot of time being alone still. Alone with his thoughts, that he doesn't want to face. He knew being around others would probably help in some way-help him to ignore the things he does not want to acknowledge-but by the same token, he felt, irrationally, he knew, that they'd just somehow know what he had done, what he had been apart of; that they would read it on his face and be disgusted with him.

What did you do ?

And the worst of it was not even the thoughts he was having while awake; it was the things that were now invading his dreams.

Sometimes it was only fragments, glimpses of his past self (his true eleven year old self? Himself in his past self's body? He often couldn't tell.) Sometimes those glimpses seemed...more, somehow, in ways he could not quite figure out. And at other times it was so detailed and layered and seemingly full of life that he could scarcely tell it from real life.

Sometimes those were of the past, at least his younger self, and at times with himself in the present, with his adult body.

Yashiro was always present.

Every moment in his dreams, from times in school, to home, to...to... to things that make his face burn with utter embarassment and heat. He was not always physically present in these moments, Yashiro, but even then...he could tell that Yashiro was never far from his mind.

Even in his dreams he could not be free of him.

And the worst part of it all? The very worst of it...

He puts his hands on his face, pulling on his face. Why did it have to feel good? In the dreams it never felt bad or wrong. No, it was...nice. Times in a dream set in the past, when he would be merely riding in the car with Yashiro, listening to him speak about his day, sometimes just letting his voice wash over him, soothing him. And that alone told him that it was some sort of twisted...thing, that it was just his mind creating odd dreams; because there was certainly no way he would ever willingly get in a car with Yashiro again.

And sometimes, instead of being in his younger body, he'd be in his body now, but it wouldn't be in the hospital; it'd be at home. But not home...it was home. He sees obvious signs of cohabitation and that, at first, makes his heart beat against his will-even within the dream, realizing he's dreaming. It was small things; a cup washed of the coffee from the earlier part of the day (coffee that he didn't drink), a well read book lying on a table, carefully bookmarked for a later read.

And even if he hadn't seen glimpses of Yashiro then...he'd have known it was him.

He was happy in these times and it was killing him. He could feel his resolve crumbling with each dream, each goddamn smile that Yashiro would give him there, that...that he could be happy. What must be wrong with him that he could ever find happiness, even within a dream, with such a thing?

How could he...but he did. And the worst part of it all? It made him see things. Things he didn't want to see, or to acknowledge. They were no single revelation, as was given to Yashiro through him, but a series of revelations. Why must it be this way? Why couldn't he...

He's startled, hands flying from his face, as there is a knock on his door. He barely has enough time to put his glasses back on before the door opens.

It was Kenya.

"Ah." Kenya says. "Good. You're awake."

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

"I'm not...intruding, are I?" Kenya asks, hesitantly. "I know you didn't want to see anyone just yet, but..."

He shrugs, looking away, and Kenya takes that as invitation enough to enter inside, closing the door gently behind him. Satoru hears, more than sees, Kenya take a seat in the chair next to his hospital bed.

"You're...okay, right?" Kenya asks again, his voice gentle. "Yashiro didn't-" At Yashiro's name, he stiffens. "He didn't hurt you right? I mean, I know he's shackled when you see him, but there are other ways to hurt someone..."

Wait...Kenya didn't know Yashiro was no longed shackled? He turns to look over at him, seeing Kenya look at him almost beseechingly, making him swallow a bit at the sight of it. Why would Kenya not know? He knew that Kenya wasn't on the prosecuting side, despite being a lawyer himself (much too personal a case, said some of the other lawyers.)

Hurt him?

"Spice." Yashiro says, with such an obvious seductiveness that he shivers. And then next, when the man's mouth moves over his, the first to ever do so, and his mouth is wet, is Satoru's first thought. And warm . He had expected it to be cold, like he expected Yashiro to be. But when it came to Satoru, Yashiro was...

"Satoru?" Kenya questions.

He jerks a bit, startled out of his thoughts. Kenya's face hadn't twisted with any disgust just yet, so he luckily hadn't blurted out anything, as he was wont to do sometimes.

"I'm..." He licks his lips. "I'm fine. It's just...a lot sometimes, dealing with him."

"Only sometimes?" Kenya jokes, which makes Satoru crack a smile. But he sobers up quickly though, giving Satoru another look that he can't decipher. He hesitates. "Satoru...I...don't want you to be alone in this. You know that I-that we're all here for you, right?"

"I know." He says immediately. "But I have to do this alone."

This gives him pause and now he can't look Kenya in the face again. He feels his face burning. He doesn't want to acknowledge why, but the thought starts beating him on the head.

"Spice, Spice," Yashiro whispers, again and again, taking his mouth again and again, as if starved for it. His hand clutch Yashiro's shoulders, feeling helpless, yet more in control than he had in ages. He was wanted and his head spun with that fact, even more than the fact of just who it was that wanted him. A thought that should probably have disturbed him, yet he finds it doesn't in the slightest. "Satoru, Satoru..."

"You know the answer to that, Spice." Yashiro says immediately, sounding insulted. "Why would you ask that? What did I tell you before, Spice? Because I meant it then and I mean it now and I will always mean it. And you know that."

I cannot live without you.

"That you would come, even at this late hour, pleases me, Satoru."

"Come, Satoru."

"What do you think of me, Satoru? Is it as simple as Kenya thinks of me, or your mother? Or of those who call themselves your friends?"

"Spice."

His hands clutch his thin blanket like a lifeline.

He wante-

He's startled as he feels a hand move over his and he turns to see Kenya looking at him. Kenya's hand is clammy with sweat and obvious nervousness. He looks down at Kenya's hand.

He trembles as the man's hands move up to remove his glasses, setting them gently onto the table. He can't help but stare as Yashiro's hands, bare and warm, move to cup his face with a gentleness that he never would have expected from him.

"Spice."

His hand jerks away and he's not sure which of them is, or looks, the most startled.

"Ah," He says helplessly. He looks down at his lap. "I'm sorry."

"No, don't-" Kenya coughs. "Don't apologize. It's my fault. I keep forgetting you're..."

A child. He knew that was what Kenya wanted to say. The thought infuriates him. After all he had said and done, in the past and now, even for those of them who didn't know about the Revivals and experiences Satoru had, what they did know should be sufficient enough for them not to treat him like a child!

Again...again it was only Yashiro who treated him differently. Yashiro whom had looked at him as an equal after that fateful confession in that car, the water...the fifteen years...the rooftop...he treated Satoru as an equal and never anything less. He never saw him as less or as...as...

Why was it him?

He feels tears falling down his face, unable to stop them, barely hearing Kenya's exclamation.

"Satoru! It's...I didn't mean-"

"It's fine, Kenya." He says, strained. "I just need some time alone now." He looks up, watching Kenya take in a breath at Satoru's tear stained face. "Okay?"

"Satoru-"

"Please!" He removes his glasses, rubbing at his wet eyes. "Please, Kenya."

"Alright." Kenya says, softly. "I'll...I'll come again another time, alright?"

He hears the door close quickly, but softly and puts his face in his hands.

Yashiro, I want...to... see you.

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It's dark along the halls as he wheels down and almost eerily quiet. It's well past time for regular visitors now but he was immediately given access after showing off his key. It's past time for visitors but usually some noise could be heard. It made the sounds of his wheels, of his breathing, all the more loud to his ears. He swallows as he gets to the door, staring at it for a very long moment before letting out a deep breath, swiping the key, watching the green light come on, a shaking hand opening the door.

He heads in, seeing Yashiro at the window once more, seemingly lost in reflection. As he heads in, the noise seems to start the older man, making his head turn, looking at him in obvious shock.

"Satoru? What are you-"

His legs are already shaking as he pulls himself up and he starts to walk over to him. Yashiro's eyes widen and he seems absolutely rooted in place, watching Satoru's slow walk over to the window. He finally reaches him, feeling as if he's walked a marathon, and looks up at him. The look on Yashiro's face takes his breath away.

"Spice." Yashiro whispers. He starts to reach a hand to Satoru. "I-"

He feels his legs start to give out and cries out as he starts to fall, eyes closing to brace for the impact-but it never comes. He feels nothing but warmth. He opens his eyes to see Yashiro on the ground, having cushioned his fall with his own body, hands holding him so very carefully, like he was something precious.

"Spice-"

"No." He says, thickly. "No, just...please...let me..."

His arms wrap around Yashiro, trembling, feeling the shock run through Yashiro's body more than seeing it. After a moment, he feels Yashiro's arms around him in return.

"You never have to ask, Spice, for anything from me," Yashiro whispers."Ever. I will give you anything you have ever wanted. Don't you know that?"

His arms tighten around the man's body. Warm, still so very warm...

"Let me stay like this..." He says quietly. "Just..." He swallows. "Just for a little while."

Yashiro lets out a breath at that and he trembles greater at the feeling of the man's mouth kiss him on the side of the head.

"Yes."

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I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought! :D

-PhoenixJustice

 

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma, one sided Kenya Kobayashi/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

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Chapter Five - Neue Kämpfe

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After what feels like hours, but he knows is only minutes, he finally starts to pull apart from Yashiro-Yashiro whom had been so quiet, holding him with careful hands, stroking his back so gently he could scarcely feel it. He expects a protest from Yashiro, but the older man says nothing. Instead he looks at Satoru and smiles. His eyes move to avoid that smile, avoid Yashiro and the burning questions and answers the man must have. But once again his former teacher surprises him.

"You must be tired now." Yashiro says softly. He cradles Satoru against his body as he makes his way carefully up off of the floor. Satoru feels a bit stronger now, after having rested, but still feels his limbs trembling slightly (and the worrying thing for him, is that he does not know if that's due to his body being fatigued or from his proximity and contact with Yashiro.)

"Why are you being so nice to me?" He finally asks, hoarsely. "I can't..." I can't take this. You, being this gentle and nice with me. And me knowing that it's true. I don't want to believe that it is. I can't. Because then I have to continue to question everything in my life. You are a murderer. Even if most of those have been prevented. You have done horrible things and care nothing for anyone.

Anyone that isn't...that isn't...me.

And that was the pill he had to swallow, wasn't it? The fact that Yashiro cared. A person who should, by all accounts, be unfeeling, even now. Should not see the value in anything or anyone. And yet? And yet here he was, with Satoru now and he cared. It made it infinitely harder to keep trying to hold onto that righteous anger that he had been feeling. When he looked into Yashiro's face and saw...

"It's alright, Satoru." Yashiro says, soothingly. He helps Satoru back into his chair, allowing his shaking limbs to rest. All he can do is look at the older man helplessly, as he comes to kneel down, moving some of the hair from the front of his face. "Take your time. Come back whenever you're ready."

"But you want to see me." He blurts out, surprising himself as much as he seems to surprise Yashiro.

The older man looks at him with wide eyes for a moment, before laughing. It's faint and rusty, the sound, as if he is unused to doing it. It immediately sounds much more genuine than he can ever hear the man laughing, except for the laugh there, at the very end on the rooftop, when Satoru has outsmarted him.

"Of course I do." Yashiro says immediately, eyes still filled with obvious amusement. "But I can wait. I've waited fifteen years, after all."

He doesn't know what to say to that, but Yashiro doesn't let him try and fill the space. He instead stands and affords him another smile, before grabbing the book off the table (the book he so often sees him reading from) and opening it up to a page he had apparently been reading from not long ago.

"Neue Kämpfe." Yashiro murmurs.

"What?" He whispers.

Yashiro shakes his head. "Nothing important now." He smiles at Satoru again. "Until next time then, Satoru."

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He had expected things to be a little awkward between him and Kenya the next time they spoke, but that really doesn't happen as when he comes to see Satoru again, a few days later, he's not alone. In tow are Hiromi and Kayo.

"How are you doing, Satoru?" Kayo asks, looking at him with a faint concern in her eyes.

He smiles, wishing he could say it wasn't mostly forced. Still, there is enough there that is genuine that he sees her smile in return.

"I'm okay. I still get fairly tired here and there, but I think I'm getting my strength back."

"So I heard!" Hiromi says cheerfully, with a large smile. "Kenya said you were starting to walk more. That's great!"

He glances over at Kenya, but the young lawyer seems absorbed in what must have been a message on his phone.

"Still," Hiromi continues, in a hushed tone, making Satoru turn to him once more. "I don't know if I could go and see Yashiro-sensei in person like that. How are you holding up?"

Instantly he stiffens at Yashiro's name, not noticing Kenya looking his way now.

I can't live without you.

He swallows.

The older man's words, spoken so softly to Satoru, the feeling of his lips-

"Hiromi-kun!" Kayo says, admonishing him. "I thought we said we weren't going to bring it up with him?"

Hiromi starts. "Ah, you're right. Sorry, Satoru."

Why? Why wouldn't you bring it up? If I can be the one to choose to meet with Yashiro, then why is mentioning him to me so taboo?

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That was a thought that would plague him the next few days; days that were now filled with Kenya, and his mother, and Hiromi, and Kaya (and sometimes even little Mirai) and sometimes Airi. Days where he scarcely can breathe without someone being there, talking with him, filling him in on things he's missed over the years. Days where he's so drained from dealing with everyone that he scarcely has strength to even do more of his rehabbing, leaving him too tired to go and see Yashiro.

It feels stifling.

And it startles him, that feeling. He had been through so much, not just on his own, but with all of these people, so to start to find them grating, even a little bit was...surprising. But because it was surprising, he decides to dig down deeper to find out why.

"When you get out of here, are you going to ask out Airi-san?" Hiromi asks.

That has him pausing in his thoughts, turning to look at Hiromi. Kenya too seems very keen on this answer. He blinks and glances away.

Ask Airi out? Maybe once upon a time. Before extra Revivals and confrontations on a rooftop and-

"Spice."

He closes his eyes.

"I think that's the last thing Satoru is thinking of right now." Kenya says. "I'm sure he's focusing on being well before anything else."

"Ahh, of course." Hiromi says. "Plus to you girls probably aren't a priority yet."

He opens his eyes. Hiromi is looking at him with no ill intent, smiling at him, and yet the thing he had just said leaves a lead feeling in his stomach, sinking deeper and deeper.

"When they are, let me know and I'll give you some tips!" Hiromi winks.

"Tips! When you nearly cried getting up the courage to ask Kayo-chan out!" Kenya jokes.

"Maybe when Satoru matures we can take him to the bar." Hiromi ponders.

"Hiromi-kun," Kayo says. "I thought we talked about this. Satoru is..."

"I am not a child!" He bursts out. "Was I a damn child when I saved all of you? When I risked my life for you?"

They all turn to look at him, startled.

"Satoru, I-"

"Why can't you..." He breaks off. Why couldn't they understand? Why was it that the only one who actually understood him was the one who by all rights shouldn't have been able to? But he did. If Satoru knew Yashiro Gaku, then Yashiro Gaku knew Fujinuma Satoru. That was what bothered him, wasn't it? The fact that it wasn't bothering him, that fact...

"I think Fujinuma-san needs some time to rest now," the voice of one of the nurses on his floor says, standing at the door.

They all look as if they want to say something, Sayo in particular, but they all do as she says and stand, making to leave. Once they're gone, the nurse walks forward, with something in her hands.

"Really!" The nurse says. "They should know better than to get a patient so riled up!" She sighs, but shakes her head. "But that wasn't why I came here to begin with. This was sent to you."

She hands over a non-descript looking package and he takes it from her, feeling the anger fading away as he looks at it curiously.

"Do you know who sent it?" He inquires politely.

She nods. "Looks like another one of your friends sent it. Your friend Gaku must like you; the store that it was sent from isn't cheap!"

He does a double take at the name but doesn't have time to try and formulate a response in return as she is called away by another nurse. He looks at the plain packaging for a long moment (Gaku) before finally opening it up. The first thing he sees is a note on the plastic covering the item.

Ein Held in allen Formen.

Immer dein, Y.

He didn't need to see the Y to know who it was from.

He removes the note carefully and stares at what he had been sent. It was a completely pristine volume one of Fight! Wonder Guy.

How did you know? Why do you know me so well? 'A Hero in all forms'...what am I supposed to make of that, Yashiro?

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"Did you like it?" are Yashiro's first words when he arrives.

The manga volume is clutched in his hands when he walks into the room further, once again on his feet instead of using the wheelchair. Yashiro looks at him with furrowed brows as he approaches, barely managing to set the manga down onto the table before clutching Yashiro's thin shirt in his hands.

"Why?" He says, despair in his voice. "Why is it you?"

Yashiro doesn't take offense to his tone. If anything, he seems drawn by it. He touches Satoru's face lightly, smiling.

"Who better to know you than me? You who knows me." Yashiro says gently, stroking Satoru's face with obvious reverence. "I watched over you for fifteen years, Satoru. I saw the mask by your bedside and I learned everything I could about it. I wanted to know what could bring out so much in you. What does Satoru like? What brings a smile to his face? What makes him happy? What are the things that Satoru likes or loves?"

But now Yashiro frowns. He leads Satoru with careful hands to the table so he can sit down. As soon as Satoru is seated, Yashiro comes to sit across from him. Once more Satoru notices the book that Yashiro is always reading from and for the first time he sees its title: Die fröhliche Wissenschaft. The Gay Science. He was absolutely not surprised that Yashiro would read Friedrich Nietzsche.

"But what is bothering you, Satoru?" Yashiro asks.

Aren't I the one that's supposed to be asking you the questions?

It's not until Yashiro looks at him and laughs that he realizes he spoke that question aloud. He flushes, looking away.

"Oh, Satoru." Yashiro says warmly, laughter still in his tone. "You can ask me anything."

He starts a bit at feeling the man's larger hand stroking his. He moves his gaze to look down at their hands. He probably should want Yashiro's hands away from him. He probably should tell him to stop, to not touch him ever again, to stay away from him.

It's the probably that had to be the issue here. He should probably want those things...but he doesn't. For the first time in days, he feels...at peace. Content, even.

"It's scary, isn't it?" Yashiro asks, in a knowing, gentle, tone. "When you realize things about yourself or the world and it opens up your eyes really for the first time in your life."

He looks at Yashiro now. The thing was, unlike other people, Yashiro really did understand that. He had experienced that very thing upon a rainy rooftop, not so long ago.

"It's...the others." He finally says, in answer to Yashiro's earlier question. "They've been showing up much more, the past few days, to see me. At first it was nice. Or...I thought it should be?" He pauses but Yashiro doesn't look at all disinterested in what he's saying; on the contrary, he's looking at him with his full attention, so he continues. "But it...wasn't. It felt...too much."

"I suppose they think they know best for you," Yashiro says, in a flippant tone. A tone not directed at Satoru, but obviously at Satoru's friends. "That they know you. But they don't know you, do they? How can they?"

"They're still my friends." He says weakly, trying to defend them. But it was made much harder when he didn't exactly disagree with Yashiro's statements.

"Hn. I suppose. But that doesn't mean they know you, Satoru. Not one of them looked at you fifteen years prior, when you were doing all you could to stop me, and saw you. They saw someone playing detective. Maybe Kenya saw you were a bit different, but even he did not see the Satoru that sits before me now, the Satoru of now who was there then. How do they see you, Satoru?"

"Like a child." He whispers, shoulders hunched. He's first reminded of Kenya's actions the last time they were alone-and how Kenya stops himself right away. Kenya is his friend and he cares for him greatly, but the relief he feels when Kenya pulls himself away is quickly forgotten when he realizes why Kenya pulls away. Kenya whom he had worked with most in the past to stop Yashiro. Kenya who still sees him, as the others do-despite all his actions and words that prove otherwise-as a child. "No matter what I do-or I have done-they treat me like a child. Like I can't handle certain things. I-I fought against you, didn't I? Wasn't that enough to see me as something more than what they were looking at, or remembered?"

"But you..." The words were hard to get out, but he pushes to get them out, nevertheless. "You don't see me like that."

"Of course not." is Yashiro's immediate response.

"How do you see me, Yashiro?" He asks, his tone almost one of pleading. He was so tired. Tired of people walking on eggshells with him, treating him like he isn't a whole person, like he's a child (despite all the evidence to the contrary.) He's tired.

"Satoru."

"No, but...I know." He shrugs helplessly. "I just...I need an answer from you, okay?"

"Satoru." Yashiro says again.

"Yashiro-"

"No," Yashiro says. He cups Satoru's face, eyes looking into his with a burning intensity. "I see Satoru."

"Oh." He says.

Yashiro smiles. "What else would I see, other than you, Mein Liebster, Satoru?"

He flushes at the words. He had enough recollection of the German he had been learning to know what that meant (My Dearest.)

"So?" Yashiro asks, attention turned once more to the manga Satoru had brought with him, his hand leaving Satoru's face to idly rub on the spine of the manga. "What did you think?"

"How did you even find it? Or be able to buy it?" Satoru asks.

Yashiro shrugs a shoulder. "Wasn't hard. Once I knew what you liked, it was just a matter of getting my lawyer's attention and throwing out some money."

He looks at the manga volume. "You didn't have to..."

"I wanted to." Yashiro says. "That-and your happiness-is what is the important thing here, is it not? Don't worry about the money. I have more than I know what to do with."

He didn't seem that attached to money, like some might be, Yashiro. He hadn't come from money, from what Satoru knew. He hadn't lived poorly but still, someone who had gained the wealth like Yashiro had from the Nishizono's might have acted a bit differently or used the money differently.

"What is money to you?" He realizes he's said it aloud, not meaning to ask it but too late to take back his words.

"It gets you material things, but those are easily forgotten." Yashiro says dismissively. "It's what comes after that is the truly beautiful thing to me. Your happiness is my happiness, Satoru."

"It shouldn't be." He doesn't yell the words. He looks at Yashiro almost resignedly. "You tried to kill me."

"I did."

"And I did all I could to stop you."

"You did." Now Yashiro's voice sounds like one of pride.

"Then why does this...why is this time here, with you, what makes me happiest now?"

Yashiro's eyes widen.

"Do you mean that, Satoru?"

"You've done horrible things," Satoru says hoarsely. "Some things that have been erased through my actions, but you've done a lot of horrible things that still exist."

"I have. I can't take those things back, Satoru."

"Would you, if you could?"

Yashiro pauses, looking thoughtful. "If it would make you happy? Of course I would."

"But you don't see the value in them, those people."

"No. But I see the value in you. I would do whatever it took to make you happy. Do you believe me, Satoru?"

"I believe you." He whispers. Because he did. It was all too obvious to him what he meant to Yashiro and to keep denying it was doing nothing but hurting himself, rather than the opposite.

"Did you mean what you said, Satoru?" Yashiro asks again.

"Why kill girls? What did you get out of it? Did you..."

"No. Not like you think, Satoru. It didn't really matter they were girls. I took no sexual satisfaction from any killing I ever did."

"Then why did you do it?"

"I wanted to fill that void in myself." Yashiro replies immediately. "I've been searching my entire life to fill that dark spot in me. I took no sexual pleasure in my acts. The act of sex was pleasant enough, I think, but anyone I had sex with was nothing more than a blur to me. Faceless, pointless. I took no pleasure in them."

"But you were engaged at one point."

Yashiro hums a bit. "Indeed I was. I thought it might help make me into something whole. But it never did, no matter how much I tried to force it. She was a smart woman but I was still left unfulfilled."

"Did you mean what you said, Satoru?" Yashiro asks again, for the third time. "Do I make you happy?" At his continued silence, Yashiro gets up, seemingly agitated for the first time. He kneels before Satoru and puts his hands on his legs. "Can I make you happy, Satoru?"

The last part...felt like more a request than a rhetorical question whether he could make Satoru happy or not.

His hand trembles as he extends it and Yashiro looks at him astonished as he touches the side of his face. He puts his hand over Satoru's, before holding it close, kissing it.

"Can I make you happy?"

Yashiro stands, pulling Satoru up with him, holding him tightly to him. He looks up at him.

"Can I make you happy, Satoru?" Yashiro asks once more.

"I want to be happy." Satoru whispers.

Yashiro takes that for the acknowledgement it was and leans in to kiss Satoru once more.

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"Ahh-!"

"I'm sorry, Satoru, is it too much? I never expected..." Yashiro seems unusually flustered, his bright as he looks at Satoru, as his mouth moves back down onto Satoru's cock. It was a bit of a blur to Satoru, getting to Yashiro's bed (which is just big enough to hold the two of them, only just), kissing the whole way until they got there.

His body feels like it's on fire from everywhere that Yashiro touches, his mouth wet and warm as it first trailed down his chest, his legs, until it finally got to his cock. All thoughts of right and wrong, where he was, of Kenya or Airi or Kayo or anyone else flies out of the window when Yashiro kisses him again. His hand takes the place of his mouth on Satoru's cock and he can't help but cry out when he strokes him with a firm hand. It is the first time anyone has ever touched him, outside of himself, and the feeling is magnified by a hundred that it's Yashiro is the one who's doing it.

"Y-Yashiro." He moans. Groaning when Yashiro's mouth plunders his once more, harder this time, his tongue invading inside. "I-I can't..."

"Come for me, Satoru." Yashiro whispers against his mouth. "Come for me, come for me, come for me...Am I the first person to do this to you, Satoru? I must be. Am I? Tell me, let me, I want to be..."

"Yes." He hisses. He feels the sudden urge to cry. "Yes. Yashiro, please-!"

He cries out, spending himself in Yashiro's hand, back arching with the blinding pleasure, his hands like vices gripping Yashiro's shirt. He comes down with sobbing breaths, Yashiro's mouth kissing his face, his neck, kissing away the tears from his eyes (his glasses forgotten about right after they left the table.)

"Satoru, Satoru." It was like a chant that Yashiro says with such reverence that it brings fresh tears to his face. "Mein Liebster. kostbar, kostbar Satoru."

Yashiro then moves to lay on the bed proper, pulling Satoru into his embrace. Once the tears are gone, the wave of tiredness hits him greatly and he has to fight to keep his eyes open.

"Geh schlafen. Ich werde mich um dich kümmern. Ich verspreche." Yashiro says softly. "I promise."

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I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma, one sided Kenya Kobayashi/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

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Chapter Six - Der rote Schmetterling

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"Satoru!"

He shifts around. The voice sounded a bit far away.

"Satoru!"

He moans a bit, sleepiness still near heavy on him, and feels a grip around him tighten.

The voice was drifting off now, leaving...strange.

He opens his eyes, blinking sleepily, seeing something disappear.

Was that the...red butterfly?

"Satoru?" This voice was not that other voice. This voice was deeper, male. The voice of a killer. The voice of one whom Satoru thought he might-

He turns his head and sees Yashiro looking at him.

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He gasps when he sees the sunlight filtering in through the window. He had spent all night here! He nearly starts to try and remove himself from Yashiro's embrace, but stops himself. Why hadn't anyone been alerted yet?

"What time is it?"

"Nearly six, I think." Yashiro says, looking up for a brief moment while he seemingly ponders this. "My internal clock seems to think it, at any rate. No one would be up at this hour yet."

Yashiro knew, yet again, Satoru's fears and thoughts before he even voiced them.

He relaxes and finds himself looking over Yashiro's face, with Yashiro looking at him with a completely open and yearning expression on his face. He feels his face go red but he doesn't look away. To be on the receiving end of such a look...he hadn't known that a look like that could exist in real life.

"Satoru." Yashiro breathes, as if really looking at him for the first time, as if not believing that he was there with him.

He swallows hard, mind instantly racing with memories from a few hours ago.

Yashiro had touched him.

No...to be more accurate, Yashiro had touched him and he had let him. It had set his body on fire and made him feel pleasure that he hadn't known someone could feel. He had let a murderer touch him. The thought...it should be a horrifying one, but it isn't. In between hours before and now, something had settled deep within him.

And only one thought remained: I want him to touch me again.

Yashiro jerks, startled, and Satoru realizes he had spoken his thought aloud. Yashiro looks at him with eyes filled with wonder, reaching a hand to touch Satoru's face.

"Do you mean that, Satoru?" Yashiro asks, hoarsely.

He nods, feeling his face burn all the more. Yashiro leans forward in the minute space between them, his breath catches in his throat, trembling, as Yashiro's mouth, soft, so softly, touches his.

"Sei mit mir, Satoru." Yashiro murmurs against his mouth with a quiet desperation. "Sei mit mir."

Be with me.

It was so very complicated yet so very simple.

The words lay on his lips as Yashiro moves his mouth from his, unsaid.

"Satoru?"

"I-" He shakes his head. "I can't-"

He stops, looking back up as something flies in the corner of his vision.

It hovered there, fluttering its large wings.

The red butterfly.

He starts to speak once more...and then everything goes white.

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"Satoru!"

He groans.

"Hurry up, Satoru!"

He sits up, rubbing at his eyes, blinking sleepily.

"If you want breakfast before you go to school, then you need to hurry!"

He stops rubbing at his eyes, staring down at his hands. His suddenly much smaller hands. He stands, looking around wildly. The smallness of the bedroom, the waft of his mother's delicious cooking...it couldn't be. It couldn't be!He rushes for the calendar on the wall.

1988.

"Revival..." He whispers, falling to his knees.

He had come back in time again.

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He couldn't even be happy at the fact of having completely working legs again. His thoughts are a swirl of emotions in him. And the main thing they are revolved around, the main thing that he can't stop thinking about is...

Yashiro.

Why had he come back? He had been sure he'd never experience a Revival again. And the butterfly was completely different this time. In all his experiences with Revival, never had he experienced one with a Red Butterfly. It had been something he had thought he had seen a short while before, the Red Butterfly, but had dismissed it as seeing things.

Why was he back?

He had...he had stopped Yashiro back then, back now. There should be no reason why he would be brought back, at least this far back. If it was about stopping the older man at some later point in time, some later crime he had committed, that would be one thing, but this...? And even then...after Satoru had stopped him, Yashiro hadn't committed anymore murders in that whole of the fifteen year span.

So why now?

He does his best to pull himself out of his reverie (a quick pinch confirms that this was, in fact, real and not a mere dream), getting dressed and getting his backpack and the like ready, heading into the kitchen. His mother stood near the sink, cleaning up a few things, looking the same as she always did, no matter her age. Still, it was nice to see her with less stress in her eyes, an easy smile on her face.

She turns when she hears him approach, a hand on her hip. "You'll need to hurry if you want to get to school on ti-ahh!"

She stops as he grabs a piece of toast as he heads for the front door.

"I'll get up earlier next time, promise!"

"What about your breakfast-"

"SorryIgottago!"

He hurries out the door, quickly downing the toast as he goes. His thoughts are singular, something he cannot begin to try and turn into thinking of something else. He had to see...he had to. The school is as he remembers it, with children going to and fro. By this time most are already in their classrooms and Satoru knows he's one of the late ones trying to get to the class in time before it started. He feels that feeling of deja vu once more, while he stands in the doorway of one of the doors that opened up into the classroom.

The room is nearly full; only a couple of places don't have someone (Satoru's desk and Yashiro's desk.) A moment after Satoru has opened the door, the one on the other side of the room opens and his breath catches, eyes moving to watch the movements of Yashiro Gaku as he enters the room.

He gets flashes of seeing the Yashiro he had gotten used to seeing, in his cotton jail wear, overlapping now with the younger Yashiro who wore the suit and tie (a habit he had never seemed to break, even fifteen years later-though Satoru supposed that it had been for good reason, considering the position in life he had held.)

"What's wrong, Satoru? Take a seat."

And just like that he finds his breath catching as Yashiro's eyes turn to him. Even if this was fifteen years past and this was a fifteen years ago Yashiro he still finds himself...drawn. He flushes completely, when he feels a stirring within himself, unlike any he had felt before in the past (though maybe that was due to the circumstances?)

He locks eyes with Yashiro.

Do I have to do battle with you yet again, Yashiro? How much does the Butterfly need to toy with me until Its satisfied? I...don't want to fight you again. I have given up so much already, that I... I can't. I care-

He takes his seat blindly, no longer looking at Yashiro. That thought that had crept up there hadn't been entirely surprising, which in of itself was the surprising thing. To distract himself from that, he tries, as the lessons go on, to try and notice the differences between the Yashiro of now and the Yashiro he had come to know that much more in the fifteen years since.

They looked much alike; really, at the point when he had started to see Yashiro in his jail cell he could scarcely see the difference any longer, outside of his hair being different, as if Yashiro had deaged somehow or perhaps just the stress of...of something had made him seem older when he first saw him fifteen years later.

No..not just 'something', but Satoru. That...was something he couldn't keep denying to himself, right? The stress of not having Satoru in his life for fifteen years had aged him, Yashiro, and then when Satoru had returned, it was like light...no, life, is returned to him once again. Perhaps truly for the first time ever.

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That first day, he doesn't do anything to try and change things. He merely observes. Mostly because he's still in a lot of shock, if he's honest with himself. He had been so sure that the Revivals were over that he hadn't known how to react now that they had continued. To have to pick up the slack once more, in stopping Yashiro...

The first day is uneventful.

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The second day is much the same, except this time, after school is coming to a close, he finally works up the courage to leave the classroom through the front, having to pass by Yashiro's desk. The older man is putting away some papers, but pauses when Satoru comes by. He looks at Satoru for a moment, before raising a brow at him.

"Is there something wrong, Satoru?"

"Oh! Uh," He flushes red, hoping with everything he was that he wouldn't say anything aloud and give himself away. "N-no. Just-" He glances out the window where it was flurrying outside, the snowflakes large as they passed down onto the ground.

"Hmm, it does seem like it's starting to come down harder outside." Yashiro remarks and Satoru freezes in place, not having heard Yashiro get up to come stand behind him. He can all but feel the body heat of the man in his closeness and just like that, it gets his heart beating all the harder.

He eventually manages to turn his head enough, so he can look up at Yashiro who smiles at him.

"Would you like a ride home, Satoru?"

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

And so, for the next few days, he starts to get rides from Yashiro on the way home. During these days, school goes much the same. Though he is a bit confused at the dates, when he sees that Hinazuki is already apart of their group. Had he gotten the dates wrong somehow? But that didn't seem possible; he had done his homework, so to speak, for so long that he felt as though he could work his way through some things blindfolded.

Not that he isn't happy that Hinazuki is already getting some measure of relief, at least by being able to be friends with him and the others. Perhaps he should look into her mother sooner. Hinazuki seemed happy, but just because he couldn't see any bruises didn't mean they weren't there. He remembered just how unhinged her mother had become and he wouldn't wish that kind of abuse on anyone.

After a few minutes of internal struggle, he finally speaks up.

"What...should you do if someone is hurting someone you know?"

There's a pause and it takes a moment before Yashiro responds.

"I...suppose that would depend on the situation, Satoru." Yashiro says, finally, eyes still firmly on the road ahead of them. "If it's someone who can defend themselves or if they started the reason for the fighting-"

"If it was someone innocent, who couldn't defend themselves?" He looks down as Yashiro glances back over at him. Perhaps he sounded too mature just then? Certainly not the age he was supposed to be, but then again...he had done that more than once before already, hadn't he? Back when he had been trying to save Hinazuki and everyone else?

At this point...did it even matter?

Things already felt different in certain ways. Maybe this wasn't even real at all, but a delusion set up by the Red Butterfly. Or maybe it was real, but the Red Butterfly had altered things. After all, he had been used to a set amount of rules from the Blue Butterfly when Revival happened. This was...it seemed to be...uncharted territory. Or maybe it wasn't and he was very, very wrong about everything.

He had no way to know for sure. Only had his wits and whatever information he had to try and see this through...however it ended up.

It's silent the rest of the car ride.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

"It's good to finally see you, Satoru! Feels we see the back of your head more than anything!" Kazu says cheerfully.

He smiles at Kazu. "Maybe I was giving you time to hit me with a snowball? Not my fault if you didn't take it! Or you did and you just missed me...again. You're not very good with throwing them."

"Hey!"

Honestly though...as much as he liked his friends (and he did), the only reason he was hanging out with them today was because Yashiro, who had apologized to Satoru as class ended, had something important to take care of. That had initially sent alarm bells in him, briefly, before he sees another teacher talking to Yashiro and he realizes that there is a staff meeting that was going to happen.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

"Everything okay, Satoru?" Kenya asks quietly, as they leave their hideout. As always, Kenya, even at a younger age, always seemed to have more of an understanding than most of their peers around them. Even back then, when he had been 'playing detective' with Kenya (when he had actually been trying to catch the killer, Yashiro) Kenya had seemed to understand a lot.

His mind briefly flashes to a hospital bed and Kenya leaning forward to kiss...and has to hold back a wince with difficulty. If he somehow got back to his own time that was...something that had to be addressed.

Probably.

Maybe.

...or they could just keep pretending it didn't happen?

"It's just," Kenya continues, though Satoru hasn't yet spoken. "You seem a bit...preoccupied."

He had to be careful here, still...he could test the waters, so to speak.

"Hinazuki's mother..." He starts.

"Ahh." Understanding fills Kenya's eyes. "I think about that sometimes too. I'm glad we were able to help her. Her grandmother seems very kind."

Wait...

"I mean, she came to live here, in town, so Hinazuki wouldn't have to leave her friends."

All he can do is stare at Kenya at that. Kenya wasn't a joker, or a liar. He wouldn't fib to someone like Satoru (or at all, really, unless the situation were dire and required it) so that meant he was telling the truth.

He blinks as something passes by his eye. Was that the...?

"I'm glad she did." Satoru murmurs.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

He leaves Kenya shortly after, walking back towards the way of his home on his own, mind still thinking on all that he had learned in such a short time. How had things changed so drastically when he hadn't yet done anything of significance for it to change?

He's startled out of his thoughts when a pair of headlights come into his field of vision, from behind him.

"Satoru!"

He stills before turning around, seeing Yashiro in his car, gesturing at him. He finds his feet moving without him even really thinking about it or any possible consequences, getting into the car, buckling up as Yashiro starts to drive once more.

"Our meeting ended up cut earlier than expected. I don't suppose you mind getting a ride back again, do you?" Yashiro asks, with a bit of a laugh.

He shakes his head and they continue after that in silence. It was starting to get dark now, though he knew his mother wouldn't be worried; she knew she could trust him and she knew the places he'd go, people whom he'd hang out with. But after a few minutes the silence starts to get to him, though he's usually good with it (usually he's stuck in his own thoughts and Yashiro seems content enough to leave him to it) and he finds himself reaching out for the glove compartment, opening it up to grab one of suckers inside.

"What are you doing, Satoru?" Yashiro asks in a curious tone.

He jumps, realizing he had unconsciously reached for something he shouldn't have any knowledge of (although some things had apparently changed, by Yashiro's tone, he obviously hadn't known about the suckers in the car.)

"Oh, I-I'm sorry," He says, licking his lips. "I didn't mean to..." He trails off when he sees Yashiro pulling off the road. They were in the near dark now (outside of the light in the car), with only trees their companions. He can do nothing but watch as Yashiro removes his seatbelt, watch as the older man removes Satoru's own. He doesn't feel fear then, as he might have once expected he would.

All he can do is look. Look and wait.

He jerks, surprised, when Yashiro grabs him suddenly, hugging him tightly.

"Yashiro-sensei...?" He asks, confused.

"Sei mit mir." Yashiro says, voice choked with emotion. "Satoru. Sei mit mir."

Stay with me.

He gasps, small hands moving to grasp Yashiro's shoulders, feeling, more than hearing, the older man's sobbing breath at that. Nearly unable to grasp it, grasp the situation, he embraces him back.

His Yashiro.

"Solange du mich willst, Yashiro," He murmurs. "For as long as that."

Yashiro was here with him.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

A/N: I'm sorry for the wait! Real life likes to kick my ass sometimes, I swear...still... All I can say is I see all of your reviews and everything else and I love each and everyone of you for it.

I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

 

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma, one sided Kenya Kobayashi/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

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Chapter Seven - Ein Schritt Vorwärts

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"How did you get here?" Satoru asks, finally, after an indetermined length of time in Yashiro's embrace. It was mostly to himself, not Yashiro, but a question to the man nonetheless.

"Your Revival can't do this for other people?" Yashiro asks, slightly muffled sounding as he had yet to release Satoru from his embrace.

The feeling of being so closely held by Yashiro should insight disgust and loathing from him, but those two emotions do not exist within Satoru as the older man holds him close. Instead he feels this warmth he never expected could from the other man (and, he suspects, it would be a warmth not ever seen by others. Only Satoru. Yet again he was the special thing in Yashiro's world.)

"No," He replies. "Only me." He swallows. "It shouldn't be possible to bring another with me."

"But here we are." Yashiro murmurs, sounding pleased.

But why are we here? He wonders. It made no sense. Things had wrapped up, when it came to the murders (and stopping them.) Yashiro had been in prison, in his cell, and Satoru had...

"I don't know." Yashiro replies, thoughtfully. It looked like he had spoken his thoughts outloud again. "I can only wonder."

And then he's all too keenly reminded of the man's arms around him (though he had never truly forgot about them) and the car feels much warmer all of a sudden than it had only moments before. He can feel his face flush and he squirms slightly against him.

"Satoru." He pulls back enough from Satoru that it leaves him seeing his face (even in the dim light where they were parked at), to see the heat in his eyes, that extra something in them.

His mouth parts slightly, an almost gasp.

"Yashiro." He whispers.

And then the man leans forward and kisses him.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

His eyes widen and he almost pushes Yashiro away out of reflex. Not out of disgust (the feeling of that was feeling farther and fartther away, no longer apart of him. He was...someone who could no longer completely resist the feelings he felt for Yashiro) but out of surprise. He wasn't sure exactly why he was surprised (perhaps because he was currently in his younger body? Did things like that not matter to Yashiro?)

Maybe it was because of his acceptance of Yashiro?

Now he does push Yashiro away, utterly startled beyond belief. But no matter which way he looked at it, the answer always came out the same way.

He accepted Yashiro.

"Satoru?" Yashiro asks questioningly.

His eyes lower down.

"Gaku." He whispers.

He hears Yashiro's intake of breath at that and jumps slightly as he feels the man's hands on his face, making him look up at him. He's startled by the tears, by the emotion, in the man's eyes, can feel the man's hands tremble as they touch Satoru's face, as if he is something precious.

And this time it's Satoru who leans forward to kiss him.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

After that, things are certainly different between them. He doesn't pull back or try and pretend that Yashiro's affections are a one-sided affair, that he doesn't feel something for Yashiro in return. But it's been days now since he's taken car rides from him and it's left Satoru having neglected his friends, which he didn't want to do. So he spends the next few days playing with them, enjoying their company (even if his mind is often elsewhere, or a bit weary sometimes at the childish games.)

Yashiro seems to take it surprisingly well, which he isn't honestly sure how he feels about it (a small part of him that he doesn't want to really acknowledge almost wants the man to get mad, to see the fire in his eyes.)

"You coming, Satoru?" Kazu asks, shouldering his backpack, already nearly out the door of the school room.

"Yes, I'm-"

"Satoru?"

He looks up from putting a book into his backpack and sees Yashiro there, gesturing him forward. Satoru glances over at Kazu and back at Yashiro, but there is no hint of malice, nor a hint of anything that might seem wrong in the eyes of someone like Kazu or an adult that wasn't Yashiro.

"Yes, Sensei?" He asks.

He almost can see the gleam in Yashiro's eyes at that.

"I need to speak with you." Yashiro glances at Kazu. "I'm sorry but you will have to wait to play with Satoru."

Kazu looks a bit disappointed but it's soon gone, Kazu being the kind to take a lot in stride and not let much bother him. "Okay, Yashiro-sensei. See you later, Satoru! I'll tell the others you couldn't make it!" And he's gone out of the room.

Yashiro stands from his desk, gesturing Satoru forward once more. "This way, Satoru."

He picks up his backpack and follows, curious, wondering just what Yashiro wanted. What he wanted soon becomes clear as the moment the door to the teacher's office closes behind Satoru and Yashiro takes a seat. He yanks Satoru forward, startling him and kisses him deeply. He lets out a sigh against Satoru's mouth, as if relieved.

"Ahh, we shouldn't-" He starts, his voice thin from the hum of heat that is building up in him with Yashiro's touch, his kiss.

"But when else will I be able to see you, Satoru?" Yashiro whispers. "I can be alone here with you now and no one think it strange."

His mouth trails down Satoru's neck, making him let out a shaky moan. "I miss you."

His arms wrap around Yashiro's neck and he leans down to hug him. Instantly the man's arms are around his thin body, holding him close, his mouth against Satoru's neck, holding him tightly as if Satoru is his lifeline.

"Stay with me." Yashiro murmurs.

Now Satoru is the one to tremble, as he can feel the weight of Yashiro's words, more than a simple request to stay with him right now. Instead, it was much, much, more than that. He swallows.

"I-" He starts. He can feel himself flushing already, hands tingling where they touch Yashiro's suited back. "I..."

"Stay."

He pulls back at that, just enough so he can see Yashiro's eyes. On closer inspection he looked near exhaustion. He can feel his brows furrow as he looks at him.

"When was the last time you got any real sleep?" He chides him.

Yashiro ponders that long enough that Satoru knows it has been awhile. He moves back, pulling at Yashiro's hand to make him stand. Yashiro does, looking at Satoru quizzically.

"Come on." Satoru says. "You're going home and getting some sleep."

Yashiro follows bemusedly until they get to his car. The ride is quiet and it isn't until they're well past the school and even past Satoru's own home that he realizes that he's never seen Yashiro's place before. He remembers, in the future, the look of the Nishizono house that had been seized by the police but that was different. This was...it was Yashiro's place.

"You shouldn't even be driving right now," Satoru says. "As tired as you are."

Yashiro glances at him.

"But my feet don't reach the pedals." Satoru mutters.

Yashiro lets out a barking laugh at that.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Yashiro's apartment looks nondescript from the outside, plain and unassuming (which he supposed Yashiro liked, as the man, as Satoru knew very well, liked to keep things close to the chest.) Yashiro stops the car and exits, glancing at Satoru who follows him up to the door. The older man looks down at Satoru as both are standing on the stoop.

"You do realize I can't take you back home now." Yashiro says. "Unless you're expecting me to sleep for a short time only."

Satoru flushes a bit, but continues to look at Yashiro steadily. "I know." He waits for Yashiro to unlock and open the door before he pushes at the man's back. "And you're getting some sleep. You need it!"

The door closes behind them.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Yashiro's home is much the same as the outside; non-descript. The only real signs of Yashiro in it is the well worn books on a bookshelf in the living room. The kitchen isn't very big but it shows signs of being used often (was Yashiro a good cook? It wasn't something he had pondered before, but now his curiosity was making him want to know everything about Yashiro.)

They pass a couple of closed doors before they get to a slightly ajar door in the back. Here Yashiro finally pauses, looking at Satoru, a strange look in his eyes.

"What is it?"

Yashiro opens his mouth and closes it again right after. That happens a few more times until he finally manages to speak. "I never expected to have you with me, here."

Those words might have once made Satoru's blood run cold, wondering what sort of nasty things Yashiro might have stored or held but now Satoru can feel the thrum of heat running through his veins.

"Well," Satoru murmurs. "Someone has to make sure you get a decent nights sleep."

Yashiro smiles at that, a true and genuine smile that makes Satoru's heart beat that much faster.

"I suppose so." Yashiro says softly.

He opens the door, looking at Satoru invitingly. Satoru follows, with the door closing firmly behind them.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

The room is probably the biggest in the apartment, decorated in black and red.

"Ah," Yashiro says suddenly. "But if I sleep now, what about food for you?"

Satoru shrugs. "We can eat after you get some sleep."

We. They both seem to feel the heat of that. He catches Yashiro's eye before looking quickly away, flushing harder at the soft chuckle the older man gives.

He isn't sure where to sit but finally gathers the courage to sit at the edge of the man's bed. It was surprisingly big, with a black comforter atop a red sheet.

"I like my little comforts." Yashiro says, voice sounding a bit muffled. He looks over to see Yashiro starting to shed clothing and turns quickly away again, heart beating quickly. "You saw that before in the cell I was in."

He had, actually. The books, the softer looking bed than most inmates in prison got. He could see that while Yashiro didn't have many vices (and could, if necessary, deal without him) he still liked to be comfortable.

"That's true," Satoru says, looking down, afraid to catch a glimpse of something he wasn't sure if he was ready to see. Sure, he was more than of age (though technically speaking his body wasn't right now) but intimacy always made him nervous. Especially so because this was Yashiro (and it wasn't because of what Yashiro had done, but because he cared about him, and so he was nervous the way anyone in a situation such as this would be for the first time.) "Did you have to spend a lot of money for it?"

"It was worth it." Yashiro replies back, his voice clear now. Satoru gets up the courage to look up and sees Yashiro clad now in a set of silky looking black pajamas. He raises a brow at Satoru, smirking. "I'm done dressing now, Satoru."

"I can see that." He mutters. Yashiro laughs. A thought comes to his mind when Yashiro moves to the left side of the bed, moving to sit on it. "Can I use your phone?"

Yashiro raises a brow, but nods. "It's in the kitchen." As Satoru stands, hesitating, Yashiro smiles. "Everything here is at your disposal, Satoru. Be at ease. And...welcome."

Satoru nods and heads out the door, back towards the kitchen, his heart beating a mile a minute. Yashiro looked happy. He grabs the phone that was set on the wall once he reaches the kitchen, thankful he had re-memorized his friends' phone numbers once he had arrived back to this time.

"Hello?"

"Ah, Kazu." Even better, Kazu himself had answered so he didn't have to wait for the boy's parents to get him. "I have a favor to ask. It's kind of important."

"Really? Sure thing, Satoru!"

"Um, if my mom calls you tell her I'm asleep?"

"Huh?"

"J-Just," He stutters, feeling his face heating up again. Damn, Yashiro and his...Yashiro-ing ways (he steadily ignored the fact that he was the one who had all but ordered Yashiro to get some sleep, knowing he would have no way home because of it. "I'm, um, staying at my dad's."

He winces a bit. He very much did not think of Yashiro in those terms anymore, but it was the easiest lie to tell. None of his friends knew much about his father, so it was probably his best excuse to use for them.

"Your dad?"

"Yeah. Um, he hasn't been around in my life much until now, but I found him and he wanted to take time to get to know one another, but you know my mom..." He idly taps a finger against the side of the phone as he talks. "She's not the biggest fan of my dad, so she'd probably take me home first thing if she knew I was-I was here."

"Oh, okay! Sure thing, Satoru!"

"Really?" Satoru asks, relieved. "Thanks, Kazu!"

"No problem! Ah, gotta go eat dinner! Later, Satoru!"

He hears a click as Kazu hangs up and hangs up the phone for a moment before picking it back up, dialing a number he remembered even better than his friends'.

"Hello?"

"Mom? It's Satoru. I'm going to be staying at Kazu's tonight-"

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

By the time he gets back to Yashiro's bedroom (having told his mother multiple times he'd be fine and no he didn't need a fresh set of clothing or anything and no he didn't have to pick him up in the morning.) he is starting to feel a bit tired himself.

He stops when he sees the tableau of Yashiro fast asleep in bed. He sets his backpack down softly, before carefully removing his shoes and coat, setting them in a pile on top of the backpack.

He stares a moment, before letting out a breath, climbing into bed, laying next to Yashiro.

Instantly Yashiro's arms are around him, making him let out a soft breath, pulling him close. Yashiro's eyes open slightly, looking at him sleepily.

"Satoru." Yashiro says, voice slurred from sleep.

"I'm here, Yashiro." He says softly. "I'm here."

And his eyes close.

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I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma, one sided Kenya Kobayashi/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Chapter Eight - Auge des Mörders

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He awakens briefly in the middle of the night, looking around sleepily for Yashiro, soon falling back asleep when he hears the man's footsteps coming back into the bedroom and back into bed.

The moment he gets near, his arms are around Satoru, holding him closely to him.

The warmth of the other man's body soon lulls him back into a deep sleep.

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The light of the morning sun filters in slowly through the slightly cracked blinds, making Satoru squint his eyes against it, even closed. He soon groans slightly, opening them up slowly, glaring at the sunlight for a moment. He rolls a bit in the large bed, before he feels a slight indentation where Yashiro should be, and sits up in bed, rubbing his eyes sleepily.

As with before, he looks around for Yashiro. He pauses in his looking around when he hears the faint sound of something coming from outside the room. He gets up and heads out of the room. He walks further down to see the relatively strange sight of watching Yashiro cooking breakfast.

At his approach Yashiro turns his head where he was concentrating on his cooking and smiles at Satoru.

"Ahh, I was wondering if you were ever going to wake up." Yashiro teases.

Satoru flushes a bit. Yashiro's bed had been surprisingly warm, both physically and metaphorically. He had enjoyed being in Yashiro's embrace even more than he had expected to.

After teasing Satoru, Yashiro turns back to the food, humming some sort of tune under his breath.

"You're happy." He pauses. He had meant that to come out as a question, not a statement.

Yashiro pauses too, glancing at Satoru with heated eyes, making him hold back a gasp, before turning back to the food, flipping it in the pan with nimble hands.

"You make me happy, Satoru." Yashiro says simply.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

When their eyes meet again, this time at school, he finds himself looking away quickly. He fights back a blush with difficulty, feeling his insides squirm with an inner heat. He wasn't sure exactly what it was, but he felt like...something had changed.

He wasn't sure just exactly what had changed. Just that some sort of last barrier between them had been broken on that night, when he had chosen to stay with Yashiro.

Did he...

His throat contracts, emotion clogging it.

"Satoru?" Yashiro asks, his voice the even sounding teacher's voice, not the voice that had spoken to him in such a different manner.

He jumps, feeling eyes from all around him on him though he doesn't look up.

"I-I'm not feeling well." He stammers. "Can I-"

"Go to the infirmary." Yashiro says. Satoru looks up and sees the worry in the other man's eyes that he had managed to keep out of his voice, before looking away again quickly.

"I can-" Kenya starts.

"It's okay." He mumbles quietly to Kenya as he passes by. "But thank you."

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

The school nurse was out, which left Satoru to lie in one of the bed's with no one to talk to. He looks up at the ceiling, as his thoughts swirl around in him.

He was in love with Yashiro.

Really, it was something that had been a long time coming, hadn't it? Longer than he realized, certainly. What else to call this feeling that made his chest clench, made him feel such a well of longing that shocked him to his very core (to remember the Satoru that he had once been, before the battle with Yashiro? The Satoru whom had been going around in a fog throughout life. Who had been living, but not living? It was getting increasingly harder to remember that he used to be that very person), that made him want to do nothing more than wrap his arms around Yashiro and hear his heartbeat, to...

He squirms a bit in the bed, flushing. This younger body of his wasn't used to such heated thoughts, obviously. Going through puberty had been something that had eluded Satoru in most of the Revivals he had been through, as he had been put into a coma. Still, this wasn't the body that was affecting him, it was him affecting the body, as his very adult thoughts were making him react as if he was back in his adult body.

He was in love with Yashiro.

He was...in love with someone who had done a lot of horrible things. Or...who had once done a number of horrible things. This Yashiro had done very little in comparison to the Yashiro of a Revival past whom had killed many. Did that lessen his deeds or crimes?

Once again Satoru was faced with the fact that he felt something for someone whom was not a good person. Yashiro had lost his desire to kill, so he had told Satoru. Had watched over Satoru for fifteen years. Took care of him, Had looked into his eyes and spoke truth to him. Had kissed him. Had touched him with heated hands upon his heated skin. Had spoke, continued to speak to him, with such feeling that he had never thought before that Gaku Yashiro could feel.

He puts his hands over his face for a brief moment, rubbing at his face, before moving them.

He was in love with Yashiro.

That...felt the most important thing in this, more than anything else.

"I love you." He murmurs, testing the words out on his tongue.

He had never told anyone he loved them before. Had never felt that depth of feeling before.

"I love you."

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

School finally lets out and he is grateful to leave. He had managed to get back into class a bit before time was up, but still felt out of sorts. He couldn't look Yashiro in the face and could only imagine how his own face looked.

It's pretty quiet, if a bit cold, as he makes his way back to his house (his mother hadn't followed up on him 'staying at Kazu's', thankfully), until he is nearly home. He pauses as he hears a few voices around the corner.

"What a shame."

"Not very old either."

"Who would do such a horrible thing?"

"I wish they'd let us get closer."

"How horrible!"

"Come on; you can't say you don't want to see it close up, do you? Even a little?"

"Well..."

"A couple of the neighbors said they were going to go around the other way, so they could get a closer look, since the police haven't cordoned it off just yet-"

His own curiousness gets the better of him and he finds himself doing just that, making his way the longer way around so he can see what it is that people are talking about. He manages to walk past a couple people talking, a male and female, and looks around the corner.

He stops immediately and has to hold back the urge to throw up.

The body was covered by a sheet, mostly, but he can still see a small hand and arm extended out, in Satoru's direction, almost as if beseeching for help, despite anyone being long past in a place to be able to help.

"You said it's a boy?" His shocked eyes look up to see a few police officers talking to one another.

"Yeah." says the youngest looking of the cops, looking a bit sick himself. "Couldn't be more than eleven or twelve. One of the residents stumbled across the body when walking their dog. Chief, do you have any idea how they could'a died?"

"I-" The older of the police officers stops, as his eyes catch Satoru's. "Hey, kid, what the hell are you doing? This is a crime scene!"

He flinches and takes off, stumbling a bit before catching his balance, continuing to run and run until he finally stops, though at this point he barely took note of where he was. He lets out a few harsh breaths, visible in this deep cold. The image of that arm and hand was seared in his brain.

Young child. Boy. No more than eleven or twelve? It...

He does throw up now. Barely manages to make it to the nearest pile of garbage ready for pickup before he throws up, his stomach gurgling harshly for a few moments as he lets it out. He finally pulls back, wiping at his mouth. He falls back onto his butt, barely noticing the cold of the snow.

Just earlier he had been awash in a feeling of almost contentment, accepting the feelings that had been smacking him in the face for ages, feelings that he hadn't recognized, but that had been building for all this time nevertheless.

He was in love with Yashiro.

Yashiro had...

Who else could have, after all? Such a specific kinda person to seek out to kill?

He must have been planning it back then, when Satoru had awoken in bed to not see Yashiro there. Maybe he had been planning it in his head, even when holding Satoru close.

He lets out a keen of despair.

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"Satoru-" His mother starts, but he doesn't listen to the rest as he heads quickly into the bedroom, closing the door shut. His backpack falls with a clatter and he throws himself into bed without another thought. He covers himself up completely, as if that can hide him from the thoughts in his head, hide him from the horror he had just witnessed, the horror that was now happening, the horror that had been apparently hiding so well behind those heated eyes-

"Satoru." His mother says again, at the door. She pauses for a moment. "I heard about what happened. If you want to talk about it, I'm here. Okay?"

He doesn't say anything, holding onto the blanket with a death grip in his small hands, ignoring the tears that were running down his face.

"If you need anything-"

"I don't want to go to school tomorrow." He says, ignoring the tone of his voice.

"Alright, Satoru."

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His mother seems to understand his need for space and leaves him alone most of the day after that and he doesn't go to school the next day, like she promised he didn't have to. He doesn't go the next day either. He finds himself just lying in the bedroom most of the day, as his mother goes to work, staring up at the ceiling blankly, trying to forget anything he ever felt about anything.

Everything hurt right now and he didn't know what to do. It should be easy, but when emotions got involved, it made everything muddled and complicated and he didn't want to feel anymore. Not when it made him feel this way.

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The third day he stays home once more. But this time, a call happens. He's listlessly eating his breakfast when he hears a name that makes him stop and look up.

"Ah. Yashiro-sensei. Yes. Satoru hasn't been feeling too well. What with the-yes, you understand. Thank you." His mother replaces the phone and he looks quickly back down to his breakfast before her eyes catch his, too afraid of what his expression might be showing in that moment.

For the first time in three days, his heart seems to beat just that bit quicker and he hates himself for it.

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On the fourth day, after his mother has gone to work, he finds himself getting restless and starts to get dressed. He wasn't going to school (he convinces himself of this), but to clear his head. He wanders around a bit, thankful that the cold and snow kept most people either inside of their own homes or too focused on getting to their homes to notice him.

He stops as he hears the laughter of a few children and pauses around the school gate to see children leaving, most of them heading to awaiting parents, but some on their own. He sees Kenya there, who looks around for a moment with a furrowed brow, as if looking for someone, before heading on his way home.

He had ended up at the school anyway, huh?

After everyone is gone, he comes around the corner and looks up at the school for a long time, ignoring the biting cold. Yashiro was sure not to have left yet.

He walks forward.

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It's almost eerily quiet as he makes his way through the school, thankfully not catching the attention of any school employees (even if he had, he could easily just say he had come to get any work he had missed out on.)

His thoughts are something he can't decipher as he walks towards the school faculty room, even to himself. He's too full of hurt, of anger, of so many things... of a feeling he doesn't want to remember that he feels. That he had just so recently discovered.

The door is slightly ajar, enough to let him see inside it. His breath catches when he sees Yashiro there, at his desk, looking through papers and looking calm as if he didn't have a care in the world. That, more than anything, is what causes him to pull open the door as hard as he can, making his way hurriedly inside.

Yashiro looks up at the noise, looking at Satoru in surprise. "Satoru, what-"

Satoru hits him as hard as he can across the face. The older man falls back, his chair tipping over, spilling onto the floor. Satoru is on top of him before he really recognizes he has done so, hitting him again.

"How could you?" He says, angrily. "You promised me it was over! How could you..."

He pulls back his fist again, but stops when Yashiro places his larger hand over it. Despite the rough way he had hit Yashiro, he still doesn't look angry at Satoru, just confused.

"Satoru, what's going on? Why are you angry with me?"

"You know why!" He cries out. "You told me that urge was gone! That...your eyes were only on mine and you had lost that urge to kill. But I saw that boy on the ground! You-"

He looks at Satoru, astounded.

"Why would I do something like that? I have no interest in that anymore." He says, sincere in his words, despite the dark and serious things they were discussing. "I have you, Satoru."

He cups Satoru's cheek, his hand so gentle that Satoru wants to cry.

"You-" He swallows.

"I would never hurt you, Satoru. Never. If it is in my power, in any way, to make you happy, I will do it. I would never do that to you again."

His body slumps and he feels a relief so palpable that it does bring tears this time.

He can't bring himself to look up at Yashiro just yet, shame filling him too deeply. He instead holds onto Yashiro's jacket, staring at his chest.

"Then where were you when I woke up? You were gone?" He asks him, fingers idly rubbing the jacket material.

"Ah." Yashiro sounds almost hesistant now. But not in the way that would have gave Satoru a feeling of horror or anger. He takes a chance and glances up at Yashiro quickly and is astonished to see an almost blush on the man's face. "I was taking care of something."

Yashiro squirms a bit and Satoru is surprised, blushing a bit when he feels the man harden beneath him. It's then that he realizes the position they were in. He nearly squeaks and scrambles away, but Yashiro holds him close.

"Taking care of what?" Satoru breathes.

"I didn't want to push," Yashiro says, face close now, eyes gleaming with that heat again and this time Satoru doesn't fight the warm feeling it causes in him. "So I went to the bathroom to take care of it myself."

The meaning is one he gets immediately, making him swallow, squirming a bit against the older man, holding back a moan as he feels himself harden, their bodies only held back from touching skin to skin by a few scant layers of clothing.

"Oh." He does flush now. Not at the implication that Yashiro had been so affected by Satoru that he had went to the bathroom to take care of it, but at the words he speaks next. "I...would have helped you with it."

Yashiro's eyes widen.

"Satoru." He whispers huskily.

Yashiro pulls him forward, hand on the back of his neck, kissing him.

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"Stop." He breathes after a moment, letting out a breath as Yashiro pulls back.

"What is it?" Yashiro whispers.

"We can't." He says, looking away for a moment to try and gather himself, moving himself from the man's lap.

"We can't?" The other man asks, disappointedly.

"Not...here." He says, flushing. He pulls down his coat, trying to hide any...'evidence' of what he was feeling. "Someone might see. I'm not what they think, but I look like it."

"Ah, of course." Yashiro says, moving to stand up himself. He fixes his chair and walks over to the door, one hand on it. "Satoru?"

The change in tone has Satoru pause. "Yes, Gaku?"

Yashiro's eyes gleam at that and he grins.

"Want to go and play detective?"

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I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice

Chapter Text

Zelle

By: PhoenixJustice

Disclaimer: Boku Dake ga Inai Machi (ERASED) is owned by Kei Sanbe; I only own this story and make no profit from this.

Warning: Rated Mature for language, sexual content, yaoi, etc.

Pairing: Gaku Yashiro/Satoru Fujinuma, one sided Kenya Kobayashi/Satoru Fujinuma.

Setting: Post-episode 12 of the anime, spoilers for for entire anime (possible spoilers for the manga.)

Summary: He can't let it lie as it were. Unable to help himself, he meets the man in a cell, beginning a dialogue that soon spirals into something deeper, darker, and more.

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Chapter Nine - die Suche nach einem Mörder

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It hits Satoru as he leaves the school with Yashiro.

"Wait." He tells Yashiro. He stops immediately and looks down at Satoru, questioningly. "We can't just be detectives, Yashiro."

Yashiro tilts his head, in the way that Satoru realizes is his way of trying to puzzle something out he doesn't quite get. It was an open gesture that Satoru also realizes that he was one of the few people (probably only person, most like) to see it. Yashiro didn't expose any of his true self (good parts or bad parts) to anyone. Well, anyone that wasn't Satoru anyhow.

"Why can't we, Satoru?" The older man asks him. He didn't sound petulant or angry or even confused. More so he seemed to want to just see more of Satoru's point of view.

"Well the cops are already investigating it, right? Why would we need to look in it?"

"Satoru," Yashiro says, in an admonishing tone. They continue to walk as they talk, on their way to Yashiro's car. "Do you really place so much faith in them?"

"What do you mean?"

Yashiro waits until they get into his car, starting it up and they are out of the school parking lot before speaking again.

"They couldn't catch me. Instead they put someone else in prison in my place, isn't that right?"

It...was not an incorrect point. Though...

"But you were incredibly smart about what you did." Satoru points out, watching Yashiro trying not to preen so obviously at that. "There's no way to tell how intelligent this person is yet."

"A fair point, Satoru." Yashiro acquiesced. "But you cannot tell me you don't want to do this. I know you too well; if there is any way you can save someone, you'll do it right? You're a hero."

He said those words, just like that. Without being malicious or condescending or mocking. No, he meant every word, which makes Satoru flush all the more because of it.

"I am a hero." Words he'd never say in any other case and would never say aloud to anyone else.

But Yashiro understood. No one else could ever understand Satoru the way that he did. That he could be the hero, if only to one man, was enough for Satoru. Step by step, he was realizing, that though Yashiro had done terrible things, he was still becoming worth saving, even if only in Satoru's eyes. But that was enough for Satoru.

Satoru was Yashiro's world. His existance the thing that Yashiro encircled himself around; he orbitted around Satoru in an eternal, unflinching, way. Something that would always be there for him. That was a thought that could be a very daunting one or one that might inspire worry of it becoming boring. But for Satoru, it was neither. The thought of Yashiro always being there for him, there with him now...it made his breath catch and his heart quicken and make him feel feelings that he had once thought he had felt, but had only known the barest knowledge of.

This was what love felt like.

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With that out of the way, there was also the thought of, even if they did decide to do this and search for whoever did this murder, how was Satoru supposed to get around without alerting his mother to anything suspicious?

It turned out Yashiro had thought about that too.

He stops the car at a payphone after a few miles and, after a cheeky grin and finger to his lips at Satoru, Yashiro calls Satoru's mother, giving her a surprisingly convincing spiel about Satoru asking to work extra work, to make up for the days he missed.

"A problem?" Yashiro asks Satoru's mother (and wasn't it a very odd sight to see Yashiro speaking, even if just over the phone, to a person he had murdered in a time that no longer existed.) "Oh no, of course not-" Yashiro was using his usual genial tone that he spoke to people at large, the one that made people think Yashiro was a much better person than he actually was. "I'm happy to see such young minds willing to work hard."

Yashiro glances at him and the look he gives Satoru is very much not a fatherly or teacher-ly one. Satoru can feel the flush move into his face and he sees Yashiro hold back a chuckle with a bit of difficulty.

"I will personally make sure Satoru gets back home. My vehicle is perfectly safe-I just had it checked recently!" Yashiro says with a chuckle, one that would seem quite genuine to anyone except for Satoru who was the only one who truly knew Yashiro. "Yes, yes. Of course. I am happy to help. Have a good day."

The older man puts the phone back onto its hook and turns to look at Satoru with a playful gleam in his eye.

"What?" Satoru can't help but ask.

"Hmm? Oh, I was just thinking, Satoru. So what would you like to do next?"

"Well, that's what I was just wondering about." Satoru says. "There's something I'd like to check but as I am now-" He gestures at his young body. While he might have been an adult, his bodycurrently wasn't. Yashiro is interested in what Satoru has to say, like always, so he continues. "I want to-to check the body."

While the thought of doing so was a bit nauseating, he still thought it couldn't hurt. If they were going to do this thing seriously, then they needed all the information they could get.

"I mean, I want to check the scene where the body was found as well, but that'll be a lot easier to do than seeing the body itself."

Yashiro lets out a laugh suddenly, startling Satoru.

"Ah, I didn't mean to startle you, Satoru. It's just-" He moves a hand to softly touch Satoru's cheek. making him flush. "You had the same thought I did."

He looks so happy at that, warm, at that, that it makes heat flood Satoru and he looks away, unable to take the sudden influx of fire that Yashiro could create, with just a few simple words. Few, simple, truthful, words, for he knew Yashiro had no reason to lie to him.

Normally, in these times when Yashiro would do something like this, touch Satoru like this, he would often remain passive (as he had still been trying to figure himself out and his feelings during these times) but now he finds himself reaching out his hand to touch the hand on his face. Yashiro visibly stops, looking at Satoru as if he didn't expect that (despite all that had passed between them now), looking for the first time (for the first time probably ever) with a genuinely soft expression on his face.

I love you.

The thought, once hesitant, once hated (when he had thought Yashiro had done something he hadn't), comes back into Satoru's forethoughts now.

Yashiro had done a lot of terrible things in the course of his life, many things that others couldn't forgive if they knew it, many things (maybe even all of them) that Yashiro didn't feel any remorse for. Still, there was...that. The look on his face when he looked at Satoru, as if he was his whole world, that he was Yashiro's whole world. That while Yashiro might not see the general morality in the way that others saw it...that he was willing to try, even if just in his own way, to do so, because of Satoru. For Satoru.

Yashiro was...

"We should go." Satoru whispers.

Yashiro's eyes never leave Satoru's, looking at him for a long moment, before leaning down.

"Alright, Satoru. Whatever you want." He says softly.

He moves his mouth down to kiss Satoru's hand.

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The next part, checking out the body, was much trickier. This part relied a lot more on things that Yashiro, not Satoru, was good at: deception. Much more than the simple convincing Satoru's mother had been. It had been a few days since the death and a quick glance at a newspaper confirms that there had been no burial for the body yet, that the police were still looking over it and other potential leads, most like.

Which meant that they would have to somehow gain access to where the body was being held.

It seemed something impossible. But Yashiro, as always, surprises Satoru.

A quick drive to Yashiro's house, with Yashiro taking a few minutes to bring out something he had obviously hidden, shows Satoru something: a set of forgeries.

"Something I had always kept as a backup, if anything ever went wrong. Especially so," Yashiro says, waving around a falsified passport. "Once I gained a politicians seat and left the relatively lowkey teacher position."

"Is that another reason why you had changed up your look then too?" Because his hair and manner and the like had changed quite a bit, years after Satoru had awoken from his coma, than the Yashiro he knew. The suit wearing had remained the same, but the suits had become a much better quality. "You wanted to fit in better with people. To hide in plain site. So that whatever else you chose to do, you could get away at a moments notice as someone else. That's why you also changed your name then?"

Yashiro looks pleased. "Exactly, Satoru. As always, you understand me. All of that is true. Even though I had lost my drive to murder anyone, after you revealed your true self to me, I still dabbled in many other petty crimes; money laundering, forgeries, that sort of thing. I always wanted to be prepared, so that no matter what happened I could escape and live out my life. And then when you awoke and revealed a even more truthful thing to me, it became that I wanted it for us. So that I could provide whatever you needed."

Yashiro admitting he had committed crimes to get money for Satoru, so they could be together no matter the circumstance, was something that he probably shouldn't have blushed over. But here they were.

"Even if I had denied you? Continued to deny you?" Satoru can't help but ask him.

"Yes." Yashiro says simply. "I would always find a way to make sure you had, have, everything you deserve. I would never be able to stay away from you though, I hope you understand Satoru. Even if you denied me. Especially if you denied me. I would do all I could to keep you with me. I cannot help myself."

That was something Satoru was very aware of now.

"Good thing you don't have to worry about that now, then." Satoru says lightly.

Yashiro laughs. "Indeed."

"So, you have something that would get you to where the body is being held, then?" Satoru asks him, getting back to the matter at hand.

"Yes. It won't take long to finish it up. It was something I honestly never thought I'd need, but I've tried to prepare for every possibility."

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The next difficult thing was Satoru himself. His drive to solve this was not in question. The problem was his body. Adult he might be, but he was currently back in his younger body, which left things a bit...awkward. How was he supposed to help Yashiro with this?

Yashiro, however, didn't seem very bothered by this.

"Let me take care of the first part, then the rest will be fine." is all Yashiro says about it.

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If Satoru had any thought to worry about the direction Yashiro might go with it, any potential fear was quickly erased when Yashiro merely asks him to wait outside, while he talks to the person in charge. Yashiro looked quite different. He had slicked his hair back into something that was similar to the hair he had used for awhile when he became Nishizono, but not quite as sophisticated.

Instead it had a few bits that kept it from being so...perfect looking, making it look a bit unkempt, as if the person hadn't had much time to focus on their appearance, as they worked much harder at their job (though all of this was deliberately done by Yashiro to look this way, which showed yet again a skill that Yashiro had. Who else could do something so meticulous, but not make it look like it was at all?)

And he had traded his usual suit he wore when he taught, for another older looking suit. It wasn't in terrible condition by any stretch, but it was obviously one that was older and looked like it was for someone who was on the go a lot. He had pulled up the sleeves on it to his elbows and looked for all the world like a detective who had seen hundreds of cases in his time.

It was rather astounding.

Yashiro leaves him outside, with a quick assurance he wouldn't be long, which left Satoru to stay close but also to do his best not to be spotted. He wanders to a nearby window which was luckily low enough that he could see through it despite his lowered height and sees Yashiro head over to the counter, taking papers out of his jacket pocket, showing it to the person there. Papers which Yashiro had painstakingly forged. Showing the name Detective Shinichi Kudou (and really, Yashiro? Detective Conan had yet to exist for a few years, but still. It was unusually flashy for Yashiro. Most likely he did it to tease Satoru.)

The papers seem to satisfy the clerk or whoever it was and Yashiro is quickly escorted towards the back, leaving Satoru to scramble down the backside of the building, doing his best both to be quick and to not be spotted. Luckily it was cold enough that none of the policemen or other workers inside seemed too keen to come out here for their break.

There was a small, nondescript, steel door in the back with a small sign saying: Authorized Personnel Only. He ducks a bit behind the area designed to throw out trash as he hears the door opening.

"Satoru?" A quiet voice inquires.

He peeks his head out to see Yashiro looking around for him. He quickly moves out from where he had been ducking and comes Yashiro's way. Yashiro immediately looks glad to see him as soon as he spots him.

"Ah, there you are. Hurry. I asked for privacy but we still won't have a lot of time. Luckily it seems pretty empty so getting you in and out of here should not be a hassle." He opens the door more to let Satoru in who quickly does so. He follows Yashiro down a clean, if a bit older looking, hallway. It was a place that looked like it could use an upgrade.

"From what the desk clerk was telling me, the family of the dead child didn't want our local police force to handle it, so they brought it here." Although Yashiro didn't sound at all sorry for the child who had died, which did not surprise Satoru, he did sound a bit excited at this whole situation, as he had before when they had been getting all the forging things ready. Things like this obviously stimulated Yashiro's mind in a way that few things could. "Which is rather helpful for us since we can access the body that much easier with much less fuss. And given the overburden of our own police force, I am not surprised that it'd end up here."

He stops at a door and quickly opens it up. It didn't take someone with a degree to see that this was the place (or at least one of the places) where coroner's did their work. It was a bit chilly, as to be expected, as they had to keep it under a certain temperature to keep any bodies still held here (for immediate autopsy or later autopsy) from decaying any quicker. The better the condition of the body, the better a chance to see the reason in which they died.

There was a body on one of the tables. Covered, but still there. Dead. It gives Satoru considerable pause, making him swallow hard. He looks up at Yashiro to see Yashiro interested but uneffected, which again gave Satoru no surprise. He had...been around a lot of dead bodies before, Yashiro. Not as many this time around, given Satoru's intervention, but enough.

He approaches it before he can lose his nerve but Yashiro stops him with a hand on his shoulder, making him look up at him. Yashiro finally looks worried for the first time. But his eyes are not on the body, but on Satoru.

"If you cannot handle this, I will look at it myself, Satoru."

This gives Satoru pause. "You...wouldn't think less of me if I did?"

The older man looks surprised at this and almost offended. "Of course not. Why would I ever think less of you, Satoru?"

Satoru lets out a breath that he didn't know he'd been holding at that. "No, I'm...I'll be okay, I think. Plus two heads are better than one."

That seems to satisfy Yashiro enough because nods and lets go of Satoru, though Satoru can still feel the warmth where the man's hand had touched. They both move over now to stand near the body. The size of the body let Satoru know that this was, even if it wasn't the recently murdered boy (though it most likely was), it was certaintly a child or someone who was child sized.

A clipboard that had been set into a slot at the table tells him, after he quickly picks it up and looks at it, that it was indeed the child who had been murdered.

"Does the name sound familiar to you?" He asks Yashiro, showing him the clipboard.

A quick glance and shake of his head confirms that Yashiro doesn't. While Yashiro cared little for people (outside of Satoru, of course), he still had a very sharp memory and remembered the name of anyone he had either killed or had thought of killing, as there had been a few stalking cases that Yashiro had done but hadn't gone through with the killing, apparently unsatisfied with something about the situation to stop him (perhaps seeing it as not safe enough to do.)

He replaces the clipboard back to where it had been and looks to Yashiro and nods and Yashiro pulls back the sheet covering the body.

"You're alright?" Yashiro asks quietly.

Satoru lets out a breath and nods. "Yes. Let's hurry. We don't have a lot of time."

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The body had a few minor scrapes and abrasions, but they didn't look like they were made by anyone but were just effects of being put on the ground (tossed, maybe?) He looks over everything carefully with gloved hands (they had been thorough about everything, including that, as they didn't want their fingerprints on anything, just in case. Especially so given that both of them were not supposed to be here at all.)

But nothing else looks all too off as they start their way up the body, searching here and there. It isn't until Yashiro visibly stops what he's doing next to him that it makes Satoru stop himself and look up at him.

"Yashiro?" He asks. "Are you alright?"

The older man startles a bit and nods. "Yes. I'm sorry, Satoru. I was just running everything over in my mind that we've been learning so far. I assume that you noticed the same thing I did, the more glaring thing on this body."

He had, but he had wanted to be thorough with everything to make sure nothing else of potential importance was missed. Especially so that DNA was still such a new thing and, as it was quite costly, rarely used during this time. So that left checking as much things physically as possible.

What Yashiro was alluding to was something very glaring obvious: strangulation marks.

The boy had been strangled to death.

But by whom? Now that the manner of death had been figured out, that was obviously the most important thing here.

They continue to check but there is nothing else of note that Satoru sees. He receives the same response from Yashiro. They make their way quickly out, after that, having taken all manner of pictures and writing down anything else seemingly important. Any thing could be potentially useful, even if not right now, if it could connect with something else later.

The drive back is a pensive one. And Satoru can only stew in it for so long before he comes to a decision.

"Yashiro."

"Yes, Satoru?"

"Let's go and check out where the body was found."

Having a set destination sets him more at ease, not noticing the absent tapping of Yashiro's fingers against the steering wheel as they make their way back into town.

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I hope you enjoyed this!

Let me know what you thought!

-PhoenixJustice