Case 17: Severed Bonds

Hatori slept soundly in his bed, but was awaken when a fist smacked into his nose. Hatori covered his face as he shook in pain. He glanced at the owner of the fist: Kohaku Hiwatari, who took over most of the bed. Hatori made a mental note to buy a second bed for Kohaku. Even though they had shared the room for almost five days, he still had problems with Kohaku’s sleeping habits. Hatori looked at the time and saw that it was only six in the morning. Hatori yawned and decided to wash up early. He staggered out of his bed toward his bedroom door.

Hatori opened his door rubbing his right eye from any sleep. Hatori saw Kurosagi walking out of her room too and said, “Good morning, Kurosagi.” Kurosagi gasped and glanced at Hatori.

“You’re up early, Ogami-San.”

Hatori nodded and added, “Kohaku woke me up and I was just going to wash…”

Hatori stopped midsentence when he saw the blood covering Kurosagi’s dress and arms. Hatori ran to Kurosagi. He looked her over and asked, “Why are you covered in blood?” Kurosagi frowned refusing to answer. Hatori recalled that when he did manage to wake up at the same time as Kurosagi, she would be covered in blood. Hatori frowned and asked, “Are you hurting yourself?” Kurosagi pushed Hatori away and walked toward the bathroom saying, “You aren’t ready for that secret, so please forget for now, Ogami-San.” Kurosagi shut the bathroom door behind her.

Hatori clenched his fist and whispered, “I was just worried.”

At around ten in the morning, Kohaku had prepared heart shaped pancakes for Hatori, Kurosagi, and himself. He placed the pancakes on an empty table and announced, “Breakfast is ready.” Kohaku looked at Kurosagi and Hatori and noticed that they seemed to be ignoring each other.

“Did you two have a fight?” asked Kohaku in a nervous tone.

“It doesn’t concern you,” said Hatori and Kurosagi in unison making Kohaku even more confused. Kohaku felt the tension in the air and decided to have a change of pace by grabbing the mail from the shelf area.

“You didn’t look at the mail yesterday, so can I open it?” asked Kohaku. Kurosagi nodded as she grabbed a pancake from the table. Hatori on the other hand grabbed a duster from a counter and began to clean the book shelves.

Kohaku opened the first letter and was surprised to see a picture. He looked at the picture and squealed in delight making Hatori and Kurosagi look at him.

“What a cute baby,” cheered Kohaku. Kohaku showed the picture to Kurosagi and Hatori. It was a picture of two girls: one around her twenties and the other in her teens. In the older girl’s arm was a new born baby sleeping in a blue blanket. Hatori smiled and said, “That’s Kimi and Chiroko.”

“Kimi and Chiroko?”

Hatori nodded and added, “Kimi came to us to solve the murder of her older brother. She moved in with Chiroko, her brother’s girlfriend when her mother was arrested.” Hatori pointed toward the baby in the picture.

“Chiroko was pregnant when we took the case, so this must be the baby.”

Kohaku smiled and said, “Chiroko’s baby is so cute.” Kurosagi noticed the writing in the back of the picture and smirked.

“Hoshino-Chan and Kaname-San wanted us to see the new baby boy: Keida named after the father. The picture is a thank you gift.”

“That’s nice,” cheered Kohaku as he looked at the picture. Hatori pulled the picture from Kohaku and added, “I’m glad the baby was born safely.” Kurosagi nodded in agreement.

Kurosagi placed a hand to her chin and chuckled.

“That reminds me, Utsuho’s birthday is today,” stated Kurosagi.

“Really?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi nodded. Hatori suddenly remembered that he was angry at Kurosagi and looked away from her with a pout. Kohaku could sense the tension again, so Kohaku broke the tension when he asked, “Who is Utsuho?”

“One of my connections’ son, who is still in high school.”

“Well if it his birthday, then let’s buy him a present,” suggested Kohaku. Kurosagi smirked and leaned against her computer chair with a loose pancake in her right hand.

“I doubt that child would want anything from me,” stated Kurosagi making Kohaku and Hatori both confused. Kohaku then shook his head and grabbed Kurosagi’s free hand.

“Anyone would be happy to get a birthday present, so let’s go,” begged Kohaku like a toddler. Kurosagi sighed and nodded. Kohaku cheered as he ran to Hatori’s room to grab his bag. Hatori glanced at Kurosagi and asked, “Would you be nicer to me if I complained like Kohaku?” Kurosagi bit out of her pancake refusing to speak to Hatori making Hatori groan in dissatisfaction.

Kohaku ran out of Hatori’s room with a blue bag over his shoulder and his doll Muddy in his arms and announced that he was ready. Kurosagi nodded finishing the last of her pancake. Kurosagi grabbed her bag from under her desk, while Hatori grabbed his black jacket from the sofa.

When they were ready, they all left the office one at a time. As they ascended the stairs of the complex, Kurosagi and Hatori refused to look at each other. Kohaku looked at Kurosagi and Hatori nervously and gulped before asking, “So which store would be best to get Utsuho’s present?”

Kurosagi rubbed the bridge of her nose and said, “Well Utsuho hates anything related to Valentine’s Day, so nothing with a Valentine’s theme.” Kohaku pressed his chin against his stuffed animal and stated, “That’s pretty hard, especially since today is Valentine’s Day.” Hatori nodded in agreement.

The minute Kurosagi’s feet touched the cement ground; she looked at Kohaku and Hatori and said, “He likes computers, so we can get him a laptop.”

“A laptop?” asked Hatori and Kohaku in unison. Kurosagi nodded and added, “Peter has told me before that Utsuho’s laptop has crashed already, so a new laptop would be perfect.” Kohaku smiled and nodded.

“That sounds great,” cheered Kohaku. Kurosagi showed a small smile, before turning to her bike. Hatori caught her smile and frowned realizing that it was rare for Kurosagi to smile around him. He didn’t know why, but he was starting to feel envious of Kohaku’s personality.

They were soon on their way to the shopping district. As Kurosagi biked she noticed that the sidewalks had both young and old couples walking side by side or looking through shop windows that had Valentine theme products. Kurosagi sighed averting her gaze from the couples and feeling a heavy weight on her heart.

Hatori on the other hand biked behind Kurosagi with a frown with Kohaku riding behind him. Kohaku glanced at Hatori and asked, “I know it isn’t any of my business, but why are you mad at Kurosagi-Sensei?” Hatori groaned gripping the handles of his bike.

“I’m not really mad. I’m just annoyed that she treats me like dirt when I am concerned about her,” stated Hatori. Kohaku looked at the back of Kurosagi and said, “You know that she doesn’t mean to treat you like that and from what I can see, she treats you kindly most of the time.” Hatori shook his head.

“If she wants to be kind then I want her to tell my why she’s covered in blood in the morning,” stated Hatori. Kohaku’s eyes widened and asked, “What do you mean?” Hatori sighed as he made a turn on the road.

“When I manage to wake up in the morning at the same time as Kurosagi, she’s covered in blood. I think she might be hurting herself, but she won’t tell me anything.”

Hatori’s grip on the handles became tighter as he biked. Kohaku noticed Hatori’s frustration and leaned his head against Hatori’s back.

“I know it is frustrating, but you should know by now that Kurosagi-Sensei would only reveal a truth when the time is right. She must be keeping the blood a secret for your own good, so give her time,” whispered Kohaku. Hatori’s facial features softened as did his grip on the handles.

“I know that, but it still hurts,” Hatori whispered back.

They soon reached the shopping district, which was filled with people. Kurosagi parked her bike in the bike rack as did Hatori. Hatori looked around and said, “There are students here too, shouldn’t they be at school?” Kurosagi smirked.

“They probably decided to ditch because of Valentine’s Day,” stated Kurosagi. Kohaku looked around and said, “But I thought kids like the high schoolers would stay in school to receive chocolate.” Kurosagi chuckled.

“Well some students rather take the chance to ditch school, especially if they know they won’t receive chocolate or they would ditch because of a date with a boyfriend or girlfriend,” explained Kurosagi. Hatori chuckled as he looked at Kurosagi.

“You talk like you have done it before,” teased Hatori. Kurosagi glared at Hatori.

“I only know some students who have done it before.”

Hatori laughed with his right hand against his face. Kurosagi suddenly smirked and asked, “So you are in speaking terms with me again?” Hatori smiled at Kurosagi and added, “For now.” Kohaku giggled as he went between Kurosagi and Hatori.

“Let’s go to the electronics’ store now,” stated Kohaku with a smile. Kurosagi and Hatori nodded as they began to walk down the sidewalk.

Kurosagi suddenly stopped in her tracks making Hatori and Kohaku look at her with puzzled eyes.

“Is something wrong, Kurosagi-Sensei?” asked Kohaku. Kurosagi frowned as she began to walk forward. Kohaku and Hatori followed her and noticed that she was heading toward a bench, where a student was laying with a Shounen manga over his face. Kurosagi stood before the bench with crossed arms.

“Why aren’t you in school, young man?” asked Kurosagi. The student flinched and removed the manga from his face revealing that he was Peter Khan’s son: Utsuho Khan. Utsuho frowned at Kurosagi and then looked away.

“I don’t have to tell you anything,” stated Utsuho rudely. Kurosagi sighed as Hatori and Kohaku stared at Utsuho.

“Does Kurosagi-Sensei know this boy?” asked Kohaku. Hatori nodded and said, “He’s Utsuho Khan, the birthday boy.” Kohaku blinked a few times before smiling and holding Utsuho’s hands making Utsuho jump.

“Nice to meet you Utsuho-Kun, my name is Kohaku Hiwatari, Kurosagi-Sensei’s new assistant and I wanted to also wish you a happy birthday,” said Kohaku in his excitement. Utsuho yanked his hands away from Kohaku with a frown.

“Don’t touch me without permission and how in the world did you know that it was my birthday?” demanded Utsuho. Kohaku glanced at Kurosagi with a smile and said, “Kurosagi-Sensei told Ogami-San and I that your birthday is today.” Utsuho glared at Kurosagi.

“Don’t tell other people my birthday,” said Utsuho. Kurosagi smirked and said, “It’s fine and if I remember right, you always ran to the neighbors to tell them that it was your birthday, so you can get more presents.” Utsuho blushed and yelled, “I was a toddler than!” Kurosagi chuckled and then her look became serious.

“I know Peter would raise Hell if he knew that you were ditching class on your birthday, so if you don’t want me to call him then tell me why you are ditching class.”

Utsuho groaned knowing that Kurosagi would do what she said, so he leaned against the bench as he began to explain.

“My school is having a Valentine frenzy and the girls in my class always want to give me chocolate. It was too overwhelming for me, so I ditched class and decided to wait for the end of the day before going home.”

Hatori chuckled and asked, “So you ditched because you were too popular?” Utsuho glared at Hatori and yelled, “The girls in my school are like wolves looking for meat!” Hatori and Kohaku turned away from Utsuho to conceal their laughter. Kurosagi on the other hand just smirked and said, “I guess that’s understandable, but you’re a big boy, so you have to learn to say no to them.” Utsuho frowned and whispered, “It doesn’t always work.” Kurosagi could tell that Utsuho was beginning to remember a painful moment, so she held her hand to Utsuho and said, “Ogami-San, Kohaku, and I are going to the electronics’ store, you want to come?”

“Fine,” mumbled Utsuho as he stood up, grabbing his bag. As they began to walk, Hatori leaned toward Kurosagi’s small form and asked, “Is it a good idea to bring Utsuho along to buy his present?” Kurosagi smirked.

“It’ll be fine, Ogami-San,” whispered Kurosagi.

It didn’t take them long to reach the electronics’ store. The minute they were in, the last customer left leaving only them in the store. Utsuho looked around and scoffed.

“This place is like a ghost town during the school days,” muttered Utsuho. Even though he said this, he began to examine the new model laptops on the display table. Kurosagi chuckled and stated, “Utsuho since he was young, loved anything related to technology just like Terry.” Kohaku glanced at Kurosagi and asked, “So how long have you known Utsuho-Kun?” Kurosagi ceased her laughter and sighed.

“Since he was a baby.”

“Baby?” exclaimed Hatori and Kohaku making Utsuho flinch. Utsuho glared at them and yelled, “What the Hell are you guys talking about?” Kurosagi smirked at Utsuho with crossed arms.

“We were about to discuss how cute you were when you were still wearing diapers like the time when you ate a cockr…”

Utsuho immediately covered Kurosagi’s mouth his face completely red. Utsuho had sweat above his brow as he looked at Kurosagi with a strained face.

“I’m begging you right now: don’t tell these idiots anything about my childhood,” whispered Utsuho. Kurosagi nodded pushing Utsuho’s hand away.

“Fine, but don’t call my assistants idiots, young man,” scolded Kurosagi. Utsuho nodded and headed back to the laptops.

Hatori chuckled as he looked at Utsuho’s back and said, “He’s pretty shy about his past.” Kohaku nodded in agreement.

Kohaku and Hatori began to look around the store on their own secretly looking for another present for Utsuho. Kurosagi on the other hand headed to the cashier desk. Behind the cashier desk was a woman with short brown hair and freckles on her face. When she looked straight, her chestnut brown eyes could be seen. Kurosagi approached the woman and asked, “Can you help me ma’am?” The woman glanced at Kurosagi and nodded.

“What do you need young lady?” asked the woman in an exhausted tone. Kurosagi glanced toward Utsuho, who was fiddling with a dark blue laptop, and asked, “What is the best deal for one of the newer model laptops?” The woman began to type on a computer at the cashier desk and then nodded.

“Because of the holiday, the lowest price for a new model laptop is $700.00 plus tax. Is that OK?”

Kurosagi nodded and was about to reach into her bag, until she saw that the woman had a huge pregnant belly pressing against the cashier table. Kurosagi sighed and said, “No offense, but the size of your stomach tells me you should have stayed home today.” The woman held her stomach and asked, “Why do you say that?”

“With your stomach that big, I would say that the baby is going to be born at any minute and if you work too hard today, it could make the delivery of the baby a whole lot harder.”

The woman smiled and replied, “It’ll be all right, the baby isn’t due for another week.” Kurosagi shook her head.

“That’s very soon and there are cases where the baby would be born early when the mother is stressed,” pointed out Kurosagi. The woman laughed.

“Those are some good points, but I’ll be fine.”

Kurosagi heaved out another sigh as she grabbed her money card from her bag. Before Kurosagi could hand over her money card, the door to the store swung open violently. Five men in ragged clothes walked in with a sneer on their faces. The woman behind the desk had a look of horror when she saw the men.

“How did they find me?” whispered the woman with sweat rolling down the side of her face. Kurosagi glanced at the men and then back at the woman.

“Do you know these men?”

The woman just ducked under her desk in response. The men marched in pushing any store goods aside with their callous hands. One of the men shoved Utsuho aside making him collide into a table with a grunt. Utsuho glared at the men and yelled, “What’s the big idea?” One of the men glared at Utsuho revealing that he was blind in one eye. He grabbed Utsuho by the front of his shirt making Utsuho gasp and held him at eye level.

“Do you want to start something kid?” demanded the man. He lifted Utsuho off the ground as Utsuho began to struggle.

Hatori walked out from one of the aisles holding a pair of earphones, but stopped in his tracks when he saw one of the men dangling Utsuho in the air. Hatori immediately rushed at the man and then yanked Utsuho away allowing Utsuho to breathe.

“What the Hell were you doing to Utsuho-Kun?” demanded Hatori. The man with the blind eye scoffed and leaned toward Hatori making Hatori flinch.

“That kid needs to learn some manners,” stated the man. He walked pass Hatori and Utsuho with the four other men behind him and added, “You’re lucky that I have no time for you.” The other men chuckled sneering at Hatori and Utsuho.

The men approached the cashier desk, where Kurosagi was still standing. The man with the blind eye looked at Kurosagi and said, “Move aside kid or better yet leave the store.” Kurosagi crossed her arms at the men.

“Why should I?” asked Kurosagi in a defiant tone. The man with the blind eye glared at Kurosagi and grabbed her thin arm roughly.

“Look kid, I have no problem throwing a kid like you against the wall, so if you don’t want to get hurt then just leave!” yelled the man. A keyboard suddenly slammed against the man’s head forcing him to release Kurosagi. All the men stared at the keyboard and then looked in the direction where it came from only to see Kohaku with uneasiness in his face. Kohaku gulped and said, “You shouldn’t bully Kurosagi-Sensei.”

One of the men, who had a scar above his right eyebrow, ran at Kohaku yelling, “Buzz off, bastard.” The scarred man punched Kohaku in the face sending Kohaku flying against a shelf. Hatori turned pale, Utsuho flinched, and Kurosagi smirked.

Kurosagi glanced at the man with the blind eye before her and said, “I don’t know why you are here, but I can tell you this: you made a mistake when you punched that child.” The man with the blind eye raised an eyebrow wondering what this “child” meant.

The next thing the men knew, Kohaku had shot up to his feet and lifted up a heavy shelf. Kohaku glared at them with a glint in his eye and threw the shelf at them making them gasp.

Three of the men were hit and pinned against the wall, while the man with the scar and the man with the blind eye stared at Kohaku in disbelief. Kohaku smirked crunching his knuckles.

“You bastards have some nerve to punch Kohaku.”

By the change of voice and attitude, Hatori and Kurosagi could tell that Haku had surfaced.

Haku charged at the man with the scar and punched him in the face sending him flying into the wall. Before the man with the blind eye could respond, Haku grabbed the front of his shirt and tossed him into the laptop displays. The force Haku used on the men was enough to knock them out for hours.

Haku scoffed saying, “Too easy.” Kurosagi smirked at Haku and said, “Good job, Haku.” Haku nodded at Kurosagi.

“What just happened?” asked Utsuho as he stared at Haku in disbelief. Haku glanced at Utsuho and asked, “Who’s the kid?”

“Don’t you already know my name?”

Haku chuckled and said, “Look kid, I only met you today.” Utsuho face looked puzzled, so Hatori went to Utsuho and said, “Kohaku has a split personality. He’s Haku right now.” Utsuho’s eye widened as he stared at Haku.

“This is my first time meeting a person with a split personality,” said Utsuho as he examined Haku. Haku placed his hand firmly on Utsuho’s face with a look of annoyance.

“Don’t look at me like a rare animal, kid.”

Utsuho managed to pull away from Haku falling against Hatori.

The minute Utsuho was away from Haku’s grasp, the woman behind the counter looked over the counter and saw that her store was half destroyed and that the five men were unconscious.

“Did you guys do this yourselves?” asked the woman. Kurosagi glanced at the woman.

“It was technically all Haku’s doing, but I can assure you that even if he wasn’t present, the men would have fallen before our feet,” stated Kurosagi. The woman waddled out holding her round pregnant belly. She looked around again and then bowed her head to Hatori, Haku, Kurosagi, and Utsuho.

“I don’t know who you guys are, but thank you for saving me.”

Kurosagi raised an eyebrow at the woman and asked, “What do you mean?” The woman looked at one of the unconscious men.

“These men have been after me for months since I got pregnant. It’s getting harder to hide and I can’t defend myself,” said the woman. The woman looked at them seriously and added, “I am willing to pay anything, if you guys are willing to protect me.” Kurosagi chuckled with a smirk on her lips.

“You seem promising, but if you want our help, I need you to tell me the whole story back in my office,” said Kurosagi. The woman nodded willing to accept anything.

Kurosagi urged the pregnant woman to follow her out of the store. Kurosagi glanced at Utsuho before stepping out the door and said, “Go home to Peter for now. I don’t want you to get hurt.” Utsuho shook his head with defiant eyes.

“I’m going with you whether you like it or not,” said Utsuho. Kurosagi sighed and turned away saying, “Fine.”

As they exited the store, Hatori noticed a small blush on Utsuho’s cheek as he followed Kurosagi making him puzzled.

Doesn’t Utsuho-Kun hate Kurosagi?

Kurosagi headed to her bike, but stopped in her tracks when she noticed about five groups of people following them in stealth like manner. Kurosagi glanced at Hatori and Haku and asked, “Can one of you two hold a pregnant woman, while running?” Hatori and Haku raised an eyebrow.

“What are you talking about?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi glanced back and said, “It looks like we will need to run.”

Suddenly, a sound of a gunshot filled the air followed by screams of terror. A bullet grazed Haku’s cheek making him cringe. Haku glared back and saw a huge number of people coming their way.

“There were more?” exclaimed Haku. Kurosagi nodded. She looked at the woman, who began to scream hysterically, and then looked toward an empty TAXI. Kurosagi sighed and looked back at the others.

“Haku, grab the woman and run toward the TAXI over there.”

Haku nodded grabbing the screaming woman and dashed toward the TAXI with his cheek bleeding.

“Ogami-San, I need you to go the TAXI as well with Utsuho. Utsuho, you need to get that TAXI started and don’t you dare say you can’t.”

Hatori nodded, while Utsuho groaned in annoyance. Hatori and Utsuho ran toward the Taxi right behind Haku.

Kurosagi glanced back at the approaching people and smirked as she removed two vials labeled rhinoceros and cheetah. She consumed the ashes in the vials and chuckled.

“I should buy them some time for the time being,” muttered Kurosagi and then ran at the group of people.

Haku, Hatori, and Utsuho ran to the TAXI and tried to open the doors, but they were locked. Haku cursed and said, “I guess the driver was smart.” Utsuho grinned pulling out a paper clip and pocket multi-tool from his pocket. Utsuho opened the screwdriver of the multi-tool and bent the paper clip in a strange curved manner. Utsuho knelt in front of the driver seat door and pushed the paper clip along with the screwdriver into the keyhole.

“What are you doing?” asked Hatori. Utsuho remained silent as he twisted the paper clip and tool in the keyhole. There was the sound of a click in the door, so Utsuho removed the two objects from the lock and then opened the car door.

“It’s opened,” stated Utsuho. Hatori’s eyes widened as he screamed, “Did you just pick lock the door?” Utsuho nodded and stated, “I presumed that’s what you-know-who wanted.” Haku chuckled and opened the back door for the pregnant woman, who had a look of shock.

“I like this kid,” stated Haku. Hatori sighed and then noticed Utsuho under the driver’s wheel of the TAXI fiddling with the wires.

“I’m guessing you know how to start up a car by the wires too?” asked Hatori in an exasperated tone. Utsuho nodded.

“It’s not that hard,” stated Utsuho. Utsuho crossed some wires creating a spark and then the car started. Utsuho slipped into the passenger’s seat and looked toward Hatori.

“I can’t drive, so you better do it.”

Hatori sighed slipping into the driver’s seat wondering how he would explain to the cops that he helped steal a TAXI cab, even though it was Utsuho’s doing. Haku shut the door of the back seat and asked, “So are we getting Kurosagi or what?” Hatori nodded and looked toward Kurosagi only to gasp when he saw that she was fighting the group of people at an incredible speed and sending them flying into store walls.

“Kurosagi!” called Hatori. Kurosagi glanced at Hatori and smirked when she saw they were in the car. Kurosagi dodged a strike from one of the people and then dashed toward the TAXI. She jumped through the door and slammed it shut.

“Go now!” ordered Kurosagi. Hatori pressed the accelerator sending the TAXI flying down the road at an incredible speed. Kurosagi looked back and saw that the people were almost out of sight. Kurosagi smirked and looked back at the woman.

“Looks like you are in deep trouble.”

The woman clenched her fist against the seat of the car and was about to say something, until Kurosagi suddenly grabbed a barf bag from her bag and hurled into it. The woman gasped covering her mouth, while Haku laughed and Hatori sighed. Utsuho looked at Kurosagi with wide eyes and said, “So she’s still car sick?” Hatori nodded and added, “Looks like we need to get to the office quickly to hear that woman’s story.” They all nodded in agreement as the sound of Kurosagi puking filled the car.

When they finally reached Kurosagi’s complex, they exited the TAXI one by one with Kurosagi being the first out with three barf bags in her hands. Kurosagi was pale as she disposed of the bags in the garbage can closes to her.

“Are you all right?” asked the woman as she leaned toward Kurosagi. Kurosagi nodded as the color in her face returned. Kurosagi urged the woman to follow her up the stairs to her office. As they ascended the stairs, Kurosagi looked around cautiously making sure that they weren’t followed.

They entered Kurosagi’s office silently. Kurosagi helped the woman sit in the chair in front of her desk as Hatori, Haku, and Utsuho sat in the sofa. Kurosagi sighed and said, “Now that we are hopefully safe, can you tell me what this is all about including your name, ma’am.” The woman nodded.

“My name is Megan Wallace. I used to live in the states, Florida to be exact. My best friend was George Loraine. We’ve been together for so long since elementary. Well nine months ago I broke up with my boyfriend, Anthony Gooding, and so I drank at a bar with George. We went over the top with the alcohol and the next day, I was in bed WITH George. After that, I got pregnant. Anthony heard about the pregnancy and claimed that he was the father. I told him otherwise and that George was the father, but he refused to believe it and in retaliation he paid some men to beat George into a coma. I got scared and went on the run, but Anthony’s men always found me. I always managed to escape and this time all the way to Japan hoping that I would be safe.”

Kurosagi crossed her arms and stated, “Well with all the people after you, I would think that Gooding-San is quiet wealthy, correct?” Megan nodded with tears in her eyes.

“He will do anything to get his hands on my baby, but I refuse to let him have her.”

Haku scoffed and asked, “Besides the guy beating up the real father, what else is so bad about him? You did mention that he is rich.” Megan clenched her fist.

“He’s a cruel man. He is only wealthy because he hurts people for a living. He robs them and kills them if they can’t pay.”

Kurosagi smirked and said, “I see, he’s a loan shark of the States.” Megan nodded and placed a hand to her round stomach.

“I don’t want my baby to be raised by such a man.”

Megan lowered her head and added, “I am willing to do anything if I can finally have a peaceful life with my baby.” Kurosagi smirked as she leaned against her chair.

“I understand your predicament and I can help, but I would need a form of payment.”

“Name your price,” stated Megan. Kurosagi held out her hand and said, “Seven-hundred dollars.” Megan’s eyes widened repeating the said amount. Kurosagi nodded. Hatori poked Kurosagi’s shoulder getting her attention.

“Why are you giving her a specific number?” asked Hatori in a low voice. Kurosagi smirked.

“I can ask for a specific amount when I want to, Ogami-San,” stated Kurosagi. Kurosagi looked back at Megan and asked, “Are you willing to pay my price?” Megan showed a look that was serious.

“I will agree to pay the amount as long as I get your names and the promise that my baby and I will be safe.”

Kurosagi nodded, her hand still outstretched, and said, “Done.” Kurosagi clenched her hand pulling it to her chest.

“My name is Kurosagi the great detective.”

“Detective?”

Kurosagi nodded and glanced to Hatori, Utsuho, and Haku.

“The one closes to me is Hatori Ogami, my assistant. The teenager on the sofa is Utsuho Khan and the one next to him, for now, is Haku Hiwatari, my other assistant.”

Megan glanced at Haku and asked, “What did you mean by for now?” Haku scoffed and said, “You’ll figure out what Kurosagi meant later.” Megan was bewildered, but then looked back at Kurosagi and asked, “Can a detective like you really protect me, even if you are a child?” Kurosagi chuckled.

“I’m older than I look and yes, even a detective like me can protect you. I promise you that.”

Megan nodded feeling some comfort and said, “I promise to pay you when my baby and I are finally safe.” Kurosagi nodded with a smirk.

Kurosagi grabbed her bag from next to Hatori slipping it on and then looked at Hatori.

“Please contact Terry for me from the office phone.”

Hatori nodded walking to the phone. Utsuho flinched and asked, “Does Terry have to be involved in this too?” Kurosagi nodded and then smirked at Utsuho.

“I could call your father instead pulling him from his work AND tell him that you are with me right now and not in school.”

Utsuho groaned crossing his arms. Haku raised an eyebrow at Utsuho and asked, “What’s with you kid? Is Hatori about to contact your girlfriend or something?” Utsuho glared at Haku yelling, “Terry is not my girlfriend!” Kurosagi chuckled and stated, “Terry is his beloved older sister.” Utsuho instantly turned red refusing to look at anyone making Haku chuckle.

Megan looked at Kurosagi and asked, “That boy’s sister, how can she help me in my predicament?”

“Terry is a hacker of the Bureau. She can hack any files and give me information that I need like the family records of Anthony Gooding.”

“His family records?”

Kurosagi nodded and added, “There might be something in his records that can help us take this case in our favor.” Megan nodded rubbing her round pregnant stomach.

Hatori on the other hand finally heard the ring tone from the other end. After five ring tones, he heard Terry’s voice saying, “Terry Cheshire speaking.”

“Terry?”

“Hatori, nice to hear your voice.”

“Nice to hear your voice too, but I was calling because Kurosagi needed to speak with you.”

“Then why did she make you call me?”

Hatori paused and looked at Kurosagi with a suspicious look.

“Why did you make me call her?”

Kurosagi smirked taking the phone from Hatori.

“I wanted to make sure that you memorized her number, Ogami-San,” stated Kurosagi before placing the phone to her right ear. Hatori groaned crossing his arms.

“Terry.”

“I hear you Kurosagi, so what do you need?”

“Can you find me as much information on Anthony Gooding?”

“I can, if you give me his age, birthday, and where he lives, so I can narrow it down.”

Kurosagi looked at Megan and said, “I need your ex’s age, birthday, and the location of where he lives.” Megan nodded.

“He’s thirty; his birthday is on August 13, 3890; and he lives in Miami, Florida.”

Kurosagi nodded repeating Megan’s words to Terry. Kurosagi could hear clicking from the phone and then heard Terry yell out a curse.

“Is something wrong Terry?”

“That bastard Shigure, stupid rat erased another one of my files!”

“Is he there now?”

Kurosagi only heard Terry typing on her computer and suddenly heard Shigure cursing a slur of curse words with Terry cackling in triumph.

“Terry?”

“Everything is good now. The stupid rat just needs to gather his missing files.”

Kurosagi sighed and said, “Good for you, but I need that file now.”

“I’m on it.”

Kurosagi heard Terry’s rapid typing and then glanced back at Haku.

“Wallace-San must be getting hungry, so can you make her a sandwich and get her a glass of water.”

Haku nodded leaving the room. Megan looked toward Kurosagi thanking her. Kurosagi nodded returning her focus to the phone.

Utsuho frowned as he stared at Kurosagi.

“How did she know that woman needed food?” muttered Utsuho. Hatori smiled and said, “Well Kurosagi is observant.” Utsuho glanced at Hatori and stated, “Now that I think about it, why are you still hanging out with Kurosagi when she mistreats you?” Hatori sighed sitting down on the sofa next to Utsuho.

“Sometimes I wonder myself,” whispered Hatori. Utsuho raised an eyebrow at Hatori wondering what he meant.

Kurosagi frowned as she heard Terry type and asked, “Is something wrong, Terry?”

Terry groaned and said, “I hacked the family records and used the information you gave me, but this guy doesn’t exist.”

“Are you sure?”

“Definitely, this Gooding guy does not exist, unless he is using a false name and hiding his real name.”

Kurosagi smirked.

“Interesting. Thanks for your hard work Terry and please go easy on Shigure.”

“No promises. Oh yeah, if you run into Utsuho tell him happy birthday for me and that his present from me should arrive in a few days.”

“Understood, bye.”

“Bye.”

Kurosagi hung up the phone just as Haku was handing Megan a ham sandwich and a glass of water. She looked at all of them smirking.

“Terry just informed me that Anthony Gooding doesn’t exist.”

Megan gasped nearly dropping her sandwich.

“What do you mean?”

“Your ex is using a fake name. I don’t know why he is hiding his real name, but it might help us protect your baby.”

Megan nodded beginning to shake.

Kurosagi looked at Utsuho straight and stated, “Terry also wanted to wish you a happy birthday and that your present will arrive in a few days.” Utsuho pouted crossing his arms.

“She should have visited; stupid sister,” mumbled Utsuho. Kurosagi chuckled.

Hatori glanced at Kurosagi and asked, “So what do you have planned?” Kurosagi rubbed her chin in thought.

“Those people Gooding hired will continue to pursue Wallace-San unless Gooding is captured, so I think it would be best to find Gooding first.”

Haku, who was drinking a glass of water, asked, “How do you plan to do that, when he is keeping his name a secret?” Kurosagi smirked and stated, “Bait.” Hatori’s eyes widened and looked toward Megan, who was nibbling on a sandwich, and then back at Kurosagi.

“You can’t use Wallace-San as bait, especially with her holding a baby,” scolded Hatori. Kurosagi chuckled smirking at Hatori.

“You should know me better than that, Ogami-San,” stated Kurosagi. Hatori stared at Kurosagi bewildered as did Utsuho and Haku. Kurosagi approached Megan making her look her in the eye and said, “Please allow me to have a drop of your blood.” Megan gasped inching back into the sofa. Hatori’s and Utsuho’s eyes widened realizing what Kurosagi was about to do, while Haku still looked lost.

“Why do you need my blood?” asked Megan nervously.

“Just trust me, Wallace-San,” stated Kurosagi. Megan gulped and then nodded. Kurosagi glanced at Hatori and said, “Please get me a needle from my desk.” Hatori nodded heading over to Kurosagi’s desk.

Haku looked at Kurosagi with a raised eyebrow and asked, “Does the blood have something to do with one of your secrets?” Kurosagi nodded as Hatori handed her a needle. She took Megan’s left hand and pricked her index finger making Megan cringe. Kurosagi put pressure on the finger until a small bulb of blood seeped out. She looked at Megan and said, “Don’t tell anyone of what you are about to see.” Megan nodded. Kurosagi placed Megan’s injured finger between her lips making Megan flinch and began to suck on the seeping blood.

Utsuho frowned saying, “I hate it when she does that.” Haku looked at Utsuho and asked, “Do you know why she’s sucking that woman’s blood?” Utsuho nodded and stated, “Just watch.”

Kurosagi separated from Megan’s finger allowing Megan to rip her hand from Kurosagi’s grasp. Kurosagi’s whole form shook with all eyes on her. Her black hair changed to brown, her body grew to be a woman’s making her clothes hug her body revealing the curves, and freckles formed on her cheeks. Kurosagi soon stopped shaking and opened her red eyes. She looked at Megan like she was looking into a mirror. Megan covered her mouth in shock.

Haku whistled in amusement and said, “So Kurosagi can change forms by drinking a person’s blood? That’s pretty cool.” Utsuho scoffed and said, “It’s annoying when she does it a lot.” Hatori and Haku glanced at Utsuho wondering how many times he saw Kurosagi transform before.

Kurosagi stood up revealing her slim form and crossed her arms against her chest.

“I just need a costume that will make me look pregnant,” stated Kurosagi in Megan’s voice. Kurosagi walked toward her room. Hatori noticed that Kurosagi’s bottom was almost visible and gasped turning away. Kurosagi noticed this and chuckled.

“I know that your staring isn’t intentional, Ogami-San,” stated Kurosagi making Hatori turn a deep red. Haku chuckled, while Utsuho stared at Hatori with a raised eyebrow. Kurosagi entered her room making sure to close the door behind her.

Megan looked toward Hatori with wide eyes and asked, “How did she turn into me?” Hatori scratched the back of his head.

“Well she can turn into any person for a day if she drinks their blood.”

“That can’t be natural,” whispered Megan turning pale. Hatori closed his eyes saying, “I know.”

Haku rubbed his chin and asked, “If Kurosagi turns into the person she drinks the blood of then why isn’t she pregnant like Wallace?” Hatori rubbed his chin stating, “I don’t know.” Utsuho scoffed crossing his legs as he leaned against the wall.

“She changes into the person, but doesn’t copy any abnormalities like a wound or in this case a pregnancy.”

Hatori and Haku nodded in understanding, while Megan still looked bewildered.

Kurosagi opened her room door revealing herself wearing a long light blue dress with sandals. What made Utsuho, Hatori, Haku, and Megan look on in disbelief was that Kurosagi’s belly looked exactly like a nine month old pregnant woman’s stomach. Hatori pointed at Kurosagi’s stomach and asked, “Why is your stomach like that?” Kurosagi placed a hand on her stomach with a smirk.

“I couldn’t copy the pregnancy with my secret, so I made a pregnant woman’s stomach using pillows and rubber,” explained Kurosagi.

“That’s clever,” complimented Haku. Utsuho just scoffed looking away from Kurosagi.

Kurosagi looked toward Megan making her flinch and said, “I’ll try to lure them out, so you stay here.” Megan nodded. Kurosagi looked toward Haku and Utsuho and said, “You two stay here with her, while Ogami-San and I go out.” Haku nodded, but Utsuho glared at Kurosagi and said, “I’m not staying here.”

Kurosagi gave him a stern look as she approached him. She slapped his forehead making him flinch. Utsuho rubbed his forehead looking at Kurosagi. Kurosagi looked serious as she spoke.

“You are strong, but you are also still a child. I need you to stay here and protect Wallace-San. If you don’t stay then I will contact your father and make sure that you are grounded until you graduate. Do you understand me young man?”

Utsuho pouted and muttered, “I understand.”

“I understand who?”

“I understand, m…ma’am,” muttered Utsuho pouting. Kurosagi nodded and looked back at Haku and Hatori, who looked shocked.

“Are you gentlemen ready?” asked Kurosagi. Hatori and Haku nodded snapping out of their shock. Kurosagi walked to Hatori’s side and then glanced toward Haku.

“If something happens while I am gone then you have my permission to go into my room.”

Haku nodded, while Hatori began to frown.

“So he can go in your room?” asked Hatori with a grumble. Kurosagi sighed glancing at Hatori.

“Not now, Ogami-San,” stated Kurosagi before opening the door. Kurosagi left her office with Hatori close behind and her bag over her shoulder.

When Kurosagi and Hatori were out of the office, Utsuho began to mutter curses under his breath. Haku glanced at Utsuho and asked, “I noticed this since you got here, but you don’t call Kurosagi by her name, why?” Utsuho looked away from Haku with a frown.

“I don’t have to tell you anything,” stated Utsuho in a harsh voice. Haku shrugged and then looked at Megan, who seemed to have a look of uneasiness as she ate her sandwich.

“So what do you plan to do after Kurosagi captures that ex of yours?” asked Haku. Megan swallowed her food and then sighed.

“I want to find a peaceful place where I can raise my baby,” stated Megan. Haku smiled and asked, “What place is considered peaceful?” Megan face looked saddened as she said, “I don’t know.”

Meanwhile, Kurosagi and Hatori walked down the street side by side. Hatori glanced at Kurosagi mainly focusing on her round stomach. Kurosagi glanced at Hatori with a smirk.

“Is my stomach that realistic?” asked Kurosagi. Hatori gulped and said, “It just seems strange.” Hatori suddenly looked saddened as he walked. Kurosagi raised an eyebrow and asked, “Is something wrong, Ogami-San?”

“I was just thinking that if Aoi was alive we would have been walking side by side with her holding our baby,” stated Hatori. Kurosagi sighed as she grabbed Hatori’s hand making him flinch and placed his hand against her fake pregnant stomach.

“Your wife’s stomach would have been like this and if you placed your hand here you would have felt the heartbeat and kicks of your future baby,” stated Kurosagi. Kurosagi then removed Hatori’s hand from her stomach and added, “But she and the baby are gone, so you won’t know what it feels, but that doesn’t give you the excuse to be depressed about it, so look to the future and find your happiness.”

Hatori stared at Kurosagi and realized that in her own way was trying to cheer him up. Hatori smiled and without warning hugged Kurosagi making her flinch.

“Ogami-san?”

“Kurosagi I…”

Hatori suddenly heard a gunshot and felt a sharp pain in his right shoulder. Hatori cringed as he glanced at his shoulder and noticed that his shoulder had a bullet wound that was bleeding heavily. He fell against Kurosagi shaking in pain. Kurosagi caught Hatori and asked, “Ogami-San, are you OK?” Hatori nodded, but pain was apparent in his face.

Kurosagi looked in all directions trying to pin point where the gunshot came from. Kurosagi saw a glint in the distance from a balcony of a building and forced Hatori down just as the sound of a bullet radiated throughout the area. Kurosagi frowned as Hatori shook in pain under her arm.

“At least they revealed themselves,” whispered Kurosagi. Kurosagi forced Hatori to his feet, dragging him to an open alleyway. She removed her bag from her back and placed it on Hatori’s lap. As she did this, she removed the locator device earrings. She placed one earring into her left earlobe and then pressed the locator device into the palm of Hatori’s right hand.

“What are you…?”

“I’m going to let them capture me.”

“But…”

“I’ll be fine, Ogami-San. I just need you to contact Orchie and keep track of me, understand?”

Hatori nodded, a bead of sweat rolling down the side of his head. Kurosagi leaned toward his ear and added, “Also tell Orchie that the west is calling the constellation.” Kurosagi then tossed discarded newspapers and mildew covered flattened boxes over Hatori’s form, just before walking out into the open, where all could see her.

In a matter of minutes, Kurosagi was surrounded by unidentified cars. Out of these very cars walked out muscle endowed men with a symbol of a tiger on the front of their black shirts. One of the men held a barrel of a gun at Kurosagi. Kurosagi raised her hands in the air in surrender.

Without further ado, the men seized Kurosagi making sure not to hit her fake pregnant stomach. Kurosagi was forced into the car between two men that could easily overpower her. Before the car took off, she glanced back into the alleyway with a smirk.

Hatori shoved the garbage off his fallen form with a hand over his bleeding shoulder. He staggered out of the alleyway with Kurosagi’s bag in hand. He looked in all directions trying to find any sign of Kurosagi’s whereabouts. Hatori clenched his fist his form shaking.

“Kurosagi,” he muttered. Hatori then remembered Kurosagi’s words and struggled to get his phone out of his pocket. With his phone in hand, he flipped it open and dialed Orchie’s number. He held the receiver of the phone to his ear shaking as it rang through. Hatori heard a click followed by Orchie’s voice saying, “Hello, this is Orchie Kou speaking.”

Hatori gasped out feeling pain radiate from his shoulder and then said, “Please don’t hang up, Orchie.”

“This voice…is that you Hatori?”

“It’s me and I have a message from Kurosagi.”

“Put her on the line then,” ordered Orchie. Hatori cringed.

“I can’t. She’s been taken by men hired by Anthony Gooding,” gasped out Hatori. Orchie cursed under his breath.

“How could you let that happen?”

“She let herself be captured…to help her new client. Anyway…she told me to call you, most likely for you to come to where I am.”

“Why your location and why is your voice starting to fade?” demanded Orchie. Hatori fell to his knees cringing.

“Well I was shot and bleeding. As for your first question: I have the tracker that’s connected to Kurosagi’s earring and the information on the case…”

Hatori fell over feeling his consciousness leave him as his phone slipped from his hand.

“Hatori? Hatori, are you still there?” Orchie’s voice said through the phone, but Hatori was completely unconscious.

Meanwhile, Haku was in Kurosagi’s office with Megan and Utsuho. Haku crossed his arms against the wall with a frown.

“I know the plan was to lure them out, but how are we supposed to know if it worked or not?” muttered Haku. Utsuho scoffed.

“There’s a reason why she let Ogami go with her. Ogami is the messenger. He will let us know if the group fell for the bait, while she discovers their location,” explained Utsuho.

“Sounds straight forward, but what if Hatori gets hurt?” asked Haku. Utsuho shrugged. They suddenly heard a knock on the door making them flinch. Megan began to shake clenching her hands to her chest. Haku glanced at Megan and said, “I’m sure it’s just Hatori.”

The knocking on the door suddenly increased making the door rattle. Haku and Utsuho immediately helped Megan to her feet with seriousness in their eyes.

“I don’t think that knock belongs to Ogami,” whispered Utsuho. Haku nodded in agreement. The knocking suddenly turned to banging making it clear that someone was trying to get in. Haku glanced toward Kurosagi’s room and said, “Looks like we’re going in there.” Haku began to lead Utsuho and Megan to Kurosagi’s room door, but suddenly began to grow dizzy. Haku cursed under his breath.

“What’s wrong?” asked Utsuho. Haku smirked at Utsuho and said, “Kohaku has crappy timing, so you better explain the situation to him.”

“What?” exclaimed Utsuho. Haku’s head fell forward nearly making Megan fall over.

“What the Hell Haku?” yelled Utsuho. Haku lifted his head looking around confusingly.

“When did we get back to the office?”

Utsuho turned pale realizing that Haku had turned back to Kohaku.

Kohaku flinched hearing the banging on the door and began to look around frantically.

“What’s going on? Where’s Kurosagi-Sensei and Ogami-San?” exclaimed Kohaku in a panic. Utsuho shook his head and shoved Kohaku and Megan into Kurosagi’s room yelling, “I’ll explain later!”

Utsuho slammed the door behind them making sure to lock it. When the lock was in place, he heard the door to the office burst open with a crash.

“Did you find the heretics?” demanded a male voice outside.

“There’s no sign of them here,” stated a female voice.

Utsuho raised an eyebrow and whispered, “Heretics?” Utsuho felt the knob jiggle and backed away from the door.

“This door is locked.”

“Knock it down!”

The intruders banged against the door of Kurosagi’s bedroom. Kohaku gasped and asked, “Where to now? Where to now?” repeatedly in a panic. Utsuho looked around and noticed a door nearly hidden in the farthest wall. Utsuho ran to the door and forced it open. Megan and Kohaku ran to Utsuho only to scream when they gazed into the new room.

On a metal table was a dead Doberman Pincher with its entrails flowing out from its stomach. Utsuho covered his mouth and shut the door.

“Not going through there,” stated Utsuho pale. Utsuho searched around the room as the banging on the door continued. He suddenly heard Megan scream and glanced back at her. He saw her staring at the only bed in the room with wide eyes with Kohaku, who looked pale, next to her. Utsuho took a quick glance at the bed and noticed the large blood stain on the bed. Utsuho cringed and turned away.

“What has she been doing in her room?” muttered Utsuho. Utsuho shook his head and continued to search for another way out. He found a handle nearly hidden by the wallpaper and pulled on it. A door opened up revealing an array of clothes of different sizes and of gender styles. Utsuho was already aware that Kurosagi used these very clothes when she needed to go undercover as another person just like how she dressed up when she took Megan’s form.

Utsuho was ready to close the door, but paused when he realized that Kurosagi told them to go to her room for a reason. Her room didn’t seem to be the safest, so why would they need to go in there to be safe? That’s when it dawned on him: there was something in her room that could be used to keep them safe.

Utsuho glanced at Kohaku making Kohaku flinch.

“Do you have an idea why you-know-who told us to go in here to be safe?” asked Utsuho. Kohaku shook his head.

“Think! She told your other half that if something happened to go in here. This room isn’t very strong, so why did she direct us here? I can only think that she knew that YOU know something that’s in her room that can help us. Try to think!”

Kohaku rubbed his hands nervously as sweat began to form on the side of his head. Kohaku glanced at the array of clothes in the closet and widened his eyes.

“In there.”

“What?”

“When Kurosagi-Sensei helped me with my case, she brought me into her room to change into women’s clothing as a disguise. I changed quickly, but I remember seeing something like a latch on the floor under the clothes. I guess Kurosagi-Sensei noticed that I saw the latch, so maybe the safeness has something to do with the latch in the closet.”

Utsuho immediately dove into the closet pushing aside the clothes. He felt through the floor and felt the coldness of a hooked handle. He tugged on it as hard as he could forcing it up revealing a hidden door passage. Utsuho peered into the passage and saw a ladder nearly covered by darkness.

Utsuho glanced back at Megan and Kohaku and said, “I found a way out.” Kohaku and Megan nodded and ran to Utsuho. Utsuho led Megan into the hidden passage’s ladder feeling relieved that Megan could fit even though her stomach was huge.

The banging on the door grew more demanding in each passing second. Utsuho glanced at Kohaku and said, “You go in first, I’ll follow after.” Kohaku nodded and slipped into the passage. Utsuho heard the door crack and gritted his teeth. He immediately shut the closet door behind him and leapt into the passage not caring about the ladder as a crash of the door being opened filled the room. The moment Utsuho was through the passage, the passage door shut tightly.

Utsuho fell straight down the passage trying his best not to scream. He soon hit the ground feeling a stabbing pain in his leg. Utsuho cursed under his breath cringing.

“Utsuho-Kun are you OK?” asked Kohaku in concern. Utsuho nodded shaking in pain. Utsuho looked around. The room they were in seemed to be well furnished. It was like a living room complete with a bookshelf and sofa. On the far wall was a black phone with a keypad and a table that held something like an old communication device used to pinpoint calls or to contact the police. A desktop computer was in the right corner. It seemed to be out of date by the look of the model. Near the sofa was a clear board that was usually seen in college rooms or crime solving divisions. The thing that stuck out the most in the room were two windows that revealed what was outside. In this case, they saw a group of people with tiger symbols on the sleeve of their shirts.

“What is this place?” asked Utsuho. Kohaku looked around and stated, “I think we are in a secret room.” Utsuho shook his head and pointed to the windows.

“Those windows give the room away,” pointed out Utsuho. Kohaku walked toward the windows and waved to the outside. One of the people looked in his direction, but didn’t even flinch. That person just looked away not noticing anything. Kohaku cocked his head in confusion and then noticed the familiar stairwell of Kurosagi Complex.

“This is directly under Kurosagi-Sensei’s Office, but there are no windows under her office,” stated Kohaku. Utsuho smirked and said, “I see, so the special windows.”

“Special windows?” asked Kohaku. Utsuho nodded.

“My dad showed me once. They’re like the special windows in interrogation rooms, but these special windows’ mirror side has a coating that matches the outside wall of the complex, so it looks like there is only wall, when in truth it is a window.”

Kohaku nodded in understanding.

Megan suddenly cleared her throat getting Kohaku and Utsuho’s attention.

“Does that mean we are safe here?” asked Megan. Utsuho and Kohaku nodded. Megan sighed in relief sitting down on the only sofa of the room.

Utsuho tried to stand up only to gasp in pain and fall back down.

“Utsuho-Kun?” exclaimed Kohaku. Utsuho looked at his right leg. He rolled up his pant leg and saw a bruise forming on it making him cringe.

“I guess the fall hit my leg,” stated Utsuho sweat beginning to form on his head. Kohaku immediately helped Utsuho up and led him to the sofa. He set Utsuho next to Megan and said, “I’ll find a first aid kit.” Utsuho nodded watching Kohaku begin to search the room.

As Kohaku searched around, Megan was rubbing his stomach nervously. Utsuho glanced at Megan and asked, “So are you going to tell the truth now?” Megan gasped and looked at Utsuho with wide eyes.

“What are you talking about?” demanded Megan. Utsuho sighed crossing his arms.

“I’ve known that girl long enough to know that she does plan ahead. She knew that those people were going to come to the office to try and get you, so she made sure to leave me here to help Kohaku or Haku remember what was in her room. The only reason I can think of that she knew was because she had a feeling that you didn’t tell her everything.”

Megan clenched her fist with uneasiness in her face.

“Why wouldn’t she believe me?” asked Megan.

“Maybe because of the amount of people after you and the fact that your ex doesn’t exist. I also noticed something was wrong when those people that busted in called us heretics. Hit men don’t use that phrase.”

Megan shook her head with tears falling from her eyes.

“I…I…”

“Just tell the truth,” urged Utsuho. Megan gulped.

“I told the truth that my ex does take money and kills the people who can’t pay, but he’s not a loan shark. He’s a leader of the Byakko Followers.”

“Byakko Followers?”

Megan nodded.

“The Byakko Followers named after the white tiger of the west is a religious group. Their belief is that the world revolves around money and that the weak should be disposed of. When I say the weak, I mean children and other church groups. I was part of the group for a year after the death of my father and got involved with Anthony, but when I started to believe that what they were doing was wrong, I left the group.”

“Wait a minute, you left the group and they are after you because of your baby. Don’t they believe that children should be disposed of for being weak?” asked Utsuho. Megan nodded tears falling from her eyes.

“According to Anthony, my baby is different. He believes my child is the future leader of the group because it is of his blood, but she’s not his,” stated Megan.

“Then do a DNA test to prove that the baby isn’t his,” stated Utsuho.

“I did, but the DNA test proved that he’s the father,” stated Megan. Utsuho’s eyes widened and asked, “Then you’re in denial?” Megan shook her head.

“He can’t be the father because we never went that far in our relationship,” admitted Megan. Utsuho frowned and stated, “So he manipulated the DNA results.” Megan nodded and added, “But because of those results no one will believe me that’s why I lied.” Utsuho shook his head.

“M…you-know-who knew you were lying and still accepted your case. She knows that you are desperate, so please believe that she can save you, OK,” stated Utsuho. Megan nodded wiping her tears away.

“I found the first aid kit,” announced Kohaku heading to Utsuho. Utsuho nodded and then looked back at Megan.

“I’m sure she will solve this soon.”

Megan nodded with a smile on her face. Her smile soon faded making Utsuho raise an eyebrow.

“Wallace-San?”

Utsuho suddenly heard Kohaku scream and looked down at him.

“What’s wrong Ko…?”

Utsuho’s eyes widened when he saw Kohaku kneeling in a puddle of clear liquid. Utsuho followed the trail of clear liquid to Megan’s feet. Utsuho gulped looking at Megan.

“Are you…?”

Megan nodded holding her stomach and cringing.

“I’m in labor,” whispered Megan. Utsuho and Kohaku both gasped mentally screaming in their heads.

Meanwhile, Kurosagi sat in the black car trying her best to control her nausea, but when the car took a sharp turn, Kurosagi had to cover her mouth trying to hold back anything from escaping her mouth.

“Are you OK Miss. Wallace?” asked the female sitting next to her. Kurosagi swallowed feeling her throat slightly burn.

“I’m fine,” whispered Kurosagi. Kurosagi looked at the people in the car with her and frowned. Kurosagi in truth already had an idea of who these people were since she first fought them. When she fought them before, she saw the tiger insignia symbolizing the Byakko Followers. The Byakko Followers were infamous in the Bureau for the mass destruction of religious based areas, especially in churches and the murder of orphan children in certain areas in the States and European Countries. The Bureau had been working in ways to get rid of the Byakko Followers, but the Byakko Followers always found ways to avoid detection.

Kurosagi knew how dangerous the group was and she couldn’t blame Megan for lying to her. Kurosagi already guessed that Megan was a former member as well. She also knew how resourceful the group was and it was the reason why she made Utsuho stay behind with Haku, so Utsuho could help Haku or Kohaku remember what he saw in her room. She only hoped that Utsuho understood the situation.

The Byakko Followers were indeed dangerous and it was the main reason why she didn’t explain it to her assistants and Utsuho.

Kurosagi then remembered the poor state Hatori was in after getting shot and placed her hand on her earring.

I hope Orchie got to Ogami-San in time.

Kurosagi snapped out of her thoughts when she felt nauseas all over again placing her hand back over her mouth.

“Are you in labor?” asked the woman next to her. Kurosagi shook her head.

“I’m just tired,” replied Kurosagi.

To Kurosagi’s relief, the car finally stopped. Her side door opened allowing her to slip out. The moment she stepped out she saw she was in what looked like an abandoned church filled with followers of the Byakko Followers. Where the cross would usually be in a church was instead the insignia of the Byakko Followers surrounded by the light of almond scented candles.

Kurosagi was forced forward down the aisle. As she walked, the followers watched her every move. Kurosagi looked forward and saw a man around his thirties standing at the stage of the church. Even though he was in his thirties, Kurosagi saw streaks of white hair in his finely combed brown hair that reached just above his shoulder.

Kurosagi stopped in front of this man, who smiled at her and extended his hand to her.

“Welcome back, my darling Megan,” greeted the man. Kurosagi didn’t extend her hand to him and only said, “I’m back, Anthony.” The man revealed to be Anthony chuckled pulling his hand away.

“Follow me to the back,” ordered Anthony. Kurosagi nodded and followed Anthony off the stage and into what looked like an office leaving his followers remaining in their seats with eagerness in their eyes.

Anthony forced Kurosagi to sit down on a sofa and sat next to her. He smiled at Kurosagi as he spoke.

“You have no idea how sad I was when I learned that you left me for that other man, but we can be together now that that man is out of the picture and you bare my child.”

Kurosagi shook her head.

“The child is not yours,” stated Kurosagi. Anthony chuckled and said, “You already saw the DNA results. That child is mine.”

“The child is not yours,” repeated Kurosagi. Anthony slapped Kurosagi, but Kurosagi showed no reaction. Anthony withdrew his hand with anger clearly in his eyes.

“Let’s see how long you can deny it,” stated Anthony. Anthony forced Kurosagi up and then dragged her into another room that resembled a patient’s room. He shoved Kurosagi into the room and then shut the door behind her. Anthony locked the door from the outside and peered through the window of the door toward Kurosagi.

“We’ll do another test and when that test comes back the same as before, you will give the child to me. Now rest until the good doctor comes.”

With that, Anthony left Kurosagi’s sight. Kurosagi sighed and placed a hand to her forehead.

He looks different but it is definitely him.

Kurosagi clenched her fist against her forehead with a dark look on her face.

During Kurosagi’s imprisonment, Hatori, on the other hand, was beginning to awaken. He could see the white lamp of a hospital room dangling above him urging him to awaken. Hatori gasped and shot up only to feel pain in his right shoulder. He cringed placing a hand on his shoulder only to realize that it was bandaged tightly. It didn’t take him long to notice the IV drip in his arm.

“Finally awake, I see,” stated a familiar voice. Hatori looked to his side and saw Orchie leaning against the hospital room wall with his hands in his pocket.

“Orchie,” muttered Hatori and then heaved out a sigh of relief.

“Glad you found me in time,” stated Hatori. Hatori’s relief was short lived, when Orchie suddenly grabbed him by the front of his hospital gown glaring daggers into his eyes.

“Now tell me what you know,” ordered Orchie, short on patience. Hatori gulped and then began to speak.

“There’s a pregnant woman named Megan Wallace being pursued by her ex, who hired dangerous men to get her and her baby. Kurosagi agreed to protect her, but when she learned that Wallace-San’s ex doesn’t exist in the Family Records, she decided to use herself as bait to get the information. I ended up getting shot and Kurosagi went with them willingly in Wallace-San’s form. Before she was taken she told me to call you and to use the tracker to find her.”

Orchie groaned releasing Hatori’s gown.

“We can find her with the tracker, but we are going in blind. Are you sure she didn’t tell you anything else?” demanded Orchie. Hatori thought a while and gasped in realization.

“She also told me to tell you that the west is calling for the constellation,” stated Hatori. Orchie’s eyes widened.

“She really said that?” asked Orchie. Hatori nodded. Orchie suddenly whipped out his cell phone flipping it open and speed dialed a number. When the other end connected, Orchie’s look became serious.

“This is Orchie Kou of the Bureau and I am announcing that the west is calling for the constellation. I repeat the west is calling for the constellation.”

“Affirmative, let us know where to go.”

“Just follow the tracer on my cell phone,” stated Orchie and then hung up. He looked at Hatori seriously.

“I’ll go find Kurosagi,” stated Orchie. Orchie was about to walk out, but Hatori immediately asked, “What’s going on?” Orchie stopped in his tracks and glanced back at Hatori.

“Kurosagi didn’t tell you and I can understand. The last time she told someone, that someone ended up dying.”

Hatori’s eyes widened.

“Did Kurosagi accept a case that is more than what it seems?” asked Hatori. Orchie nodded his look growing dark.

“The west is calling for the constellation is a code name for the Byakko Followers.”

“Byakko Followers?”

Orchie nodded and added, “They are a religious group wanted by the Bureau for mass murder. If anyone that discovers their group refuses to join them, they are killed. They always found ways to avoid the Bureau, but now Kurosagi has found them again.”

Hatori clenched his fist and asked, “Is there anything I can do?” Orchie nodded and stated, “Stay here and get better. In your condition you are just asking to be killed.” Hatori frowned and nodded knowing that Orchie was right. Hatori suddenly gasped in realization.

“The client, Megan Wallace; Haku, and Utsuho are still back in the office. They could be in danger,” stated Hatori, realizing that if the group can avoid the Bureau they would have most likely discovered Kurosagi’s office that held people who they believed knew of the group.

Orchie cursed under his breath pulling out his phone. He fast dialed a number holding the phone to his ear. When the other end connected, he immediately said, “This is Orchie Kou, send policemen to the Kurosagi Complex to protect the three individuals: Megan Wallace, Kohaku Hiwatari, and Utsuho Khan. Approach with extreme caution.”

“Understood sir.”

Orchie hung up and looked back at Hatori.

“We will protect them,” stated Orchie and then ran out.

Hatori clenched his covers miserable that he couldn’t do anything, especially since Kurosagi was in danger.

Kurosagi.

While this was going on, Kohaku and Utsuho were desperately trying to help Megan, who was in heavy labor. Kohaku looked around as Utsuho tried to lay Megan on the ground gently.

“What do we do?” asked Kohaku in a panic. Utsuho sweated and said, “I saw m…you know who do this before.”

“Do you mean Kurosagi-Sensei?” asked Kohaku. Utsuho nodded.

“She helped deliver a baby when she was still living with dad and me. She used towels, hot water, and her hands.”

“Is that really all?” asked Kohaku. Utsuho groaned and said, “I was only five when I saw her do that, so it isn’t very clear.” Megan screamed with tears in her eyes.

“You’ll be fine, um…what is your name?”

“I already told you,” gasped out Megan. Kohaku fidgeted and said, “Well, you’ll be fine, so just relax now.” Megan gritted her teeth and then yelled, “I can’t relax!”

“Is there something I can do?” asked Kohaku panicking. Megan nodded and said, “Give me your hand.” Kohaku nodded holding his hand to her. Megan gripped Kohaku’s hand hard making Kohaku gasp in pain before changing into Haku. Haku gasped in pain and yelled, “What the Hell?” Haku tried to pull his hand away, but to no avail.

Utsuho sighed realizing that Kohaku had changed to Haku and said, “Welcome back.” Haku glared at Utsuho and yelled, “Where are we and why is this woman gripping my hand like a metal clamp?” Haku cringed as Megan’s hold increased.

“We are in a secret room and Wallace-San is in labor, so be helpful by letting her squeeze your hand,” answered Utsuho as he stood up. Utsuho headed to the bathroom area he found as Haku begged him to come back with pain in his face.

Utsuho was panting as he filled an empty pan with hot water. He remembered Kurosagi’s form when he was five helping a woman he can’t remember the name of deliver a baby. He remembered the woman’s pain filled face as she delivered the baby, but he also remembered Kurosagi’s face with seriousness as she reached into the woman.

Utsuho shut his eyes feeling the warm water leak out of the pan.

“I need you,” whispered Utsuho.

In the meantime, Kurosagi sat in the patient’s room on a gray fabric chair silently. As she sat down, she examined the room she was in. Metal shelves lined the wall. On the metal shelves were clear jars that revealed dead embryos. The Byakko followers were infamous for their illegal abortions and what made them worse was that the fact that they would force abortions on any pregnant women they captured. Megan Wallace was a rare case, so her baby was safe. The bed in the room had clear white sheets, but there were obvious blood stains either from abortion or an inhuman killing.

Kurosagi frowned remembering a body of someone close to her. That body was cut up so much by a blunt blade that no one could recognize the body until a DNA testing was done. That person was murdered and Kurosagi could never forget who that person was.

Kurosagi snapped out of her thoughts when she heard the door to the room open. She looked up and saw an elderly man walk into the room. He seemed to be around his sixties with the wrinkles and age spots on his face and the countless strands of white hair. There were hints of black hair indicating that he at least wasn’t over seventy. The man wore a long sleeved green and red striped sweater with gray fabric pants.

The elderly man approached Kurosagi making sure to close the door behind him with a serious look on his face. He looked her up and down and sighed.

“I see that you are taking better care of yourself Miss. Wallace,” stated the man. Kurosagi remained silent for she had no idea who this man was, but she could guess that he was the doctor of the Byakko Followers who would be doing the DNA testing for the baby by the fact he could enter the room without anyone with him and the way his fingers curved like a surgeon’s fingers after an operation.

The elderly man observed Kurosagi leaning in closer and then his eyes widened.

“Are you really Miss. Wallace?” asked the man. Kurosagi smirked and suddenly grabbed the man’s right arm and twisted it behind his back making him gasp in pain.

“Looks like you noticed,” stated Kurosagi. The man looked at Kurosagi with wide eyes with pain apparent in his face.

“I’m a doctor, so of course I can notice that you’re not pregnant,” stated the man. Kurosagi chuckled.

“At least I know you’re a real doctor to notice the difference between a real and fake pregnancy,” stated Kurosagi and then twisted his arm adding, “Now tell me the real results of the first DNA testing.” The man, revealed to be a doctor, shook his head.

“I’ll never tell you anything. HE….!”

Without warning, Kurosagi stabbed her index finger into the arm of the doctor. The doctor gasped out trying to scream, but the pain in his arm was so intense that his voice seemed to fade into nothing. Kurosagi smirked as blood flowed from the doctor’s arm.

Listen well, dear doctor. You will answer all my questions or I will make sure that my voice never leaves your head, understand?

Tears began to fall from the doctor’s eyes as he nodded his head.

Now tell me what were the results of the first DNA testing? I’ll know if you’re lying, so save yourself the trouble and tell the truth.

“Mr. Gooding is not the father. I don’t know who the true father is, but it was never Mr. Gooding.”

Did Mr. Gooding make you lie about the DNA testing, so the baby could be his?

The doctor nodded tears flowing from his eyes like a waterfall.

Now tell me why does Mr. Gooding want the baby when he is the leader of the Byakko Followers?

“Miss. Wallace was the first woman he took an interest in, but when she left and got pregnant, he decided that he would have the baby instead of her heart as revenge.”

Kurosagi frowned removing her blood soaked finger from the doctor’s arm. The doctor gasped as tears fell from his eyes.

“This is my last question: are all the Byakko Followers including the leader here?” asked Kurosagi. The doctor nodded and added, “Mr. Gooding is the leader now.” Kurosagi narrowed her eyes. Kurosagi karate chopped the back of the doctor’s head making him pass out instantly.

Kurosagi removed her fake pregnant belly dumping it on top of the unconscious doctor. She approached the door cautiously and then peeked through the window. The door was being heavily guarded on both sides. She yanked out two strands of her hair and ran it across her lips making them become solid needles. She then removed a vial labeled elephant hidden in her skirt and devoured the ashes within it.

Taking in a deep breath she kicked the door open sending it flying across the room. Two guards were only able to gasp before the solid strands of hair sank into their foreheads. They screamed out in agony as they fell to the ground withering in pain gripping their heads. Kurosagi rushed out of the room slamming the palm of her hand into one of the guards hearing a crack. The guard gasped in pain coughing out blood. The guard fell over shaking in pain.

Kurosagi looked up and saw that five guards remained looking at her with wide eyes and machine guns in their grasp. Kurosagi stood up straight and glared at them with a smirk upon her lips.

“I won’t let any of you leave this place,” stated Kurosagi and then rushed at the men as the sound of bullets filled the air.

Just a few moments before, Anthony had finished preaching to his followers and entered his office with a stoic look. He closed the door and smiled. He believed that after the second DNA testing Megan would return to his side and then he would permanently end the life of her previous lover. He meant to kill Megan’s lover the first time, but he was able to survive and has since then been under the watchful eye of the police, who were investigating the assault. The followers made sure not to leave any trace of the Byakko Followers, so the police were at a dead end. When the case is closed, that would be Megan’s lover’s downfall.

Anthony suddenly heard the roaring of gun shots and crouched down. He peeked through the crack of his door and felt his heart nearly stop. Many of his followers were lying on the ground, shooting randomly with fear in their eyes, and most of them were trying to get out with no avail. The object of the fear and the chaos was because of one person standing on the podium with blood covering her from head to toe with a half torn dress: “his” Megan.

Anthony saw Megan get impaled by bullets, but only blood flew with no wound in sight. It actually looked like the wound was healing at an alarming rate. He saw Megan grab a soldier by the neck and toss him against a pillar like he was a sack of potatoes as a bullet impaled the back of her neck. Megan kept moving with blood dripping from her form. If he didn’t know better, Megan looked like a demon.

Anthony snapped out of his shock when he heard the approaching sirens. He cursed under his breath as he ran to his desk. He pushed his desk aside revealing a secret passage. He slipped through the passage and ran down the hidden path. Only one thought clouded his mind at that point: that monster was not his Megan.

Kurosagi heard the sirens as she forced the last of the Byakko Follower’s guards in the building to the ground. She pushed aside her hair and muttered, “About time.” The door to the Byakko Followers hideout burst open revealing an array of police officers and Bureau agents stationed in Japan. Most of them screamed at the sight of Kurosagi’s blood covered form, until she said, “Cuff the fallen guards and then retrieve the others that ran through the open door near the podium. We can’t let any of them escape so move now!” The strictness of her voice and the seriousness in her eyes made it clear to the Bureau agents that this unfamiliar woman was actually Kurosagi, who they hated to the bottom of their very core. They hated her, but they did as she ordered.

Kurosagi stood up pushing a strand of blood covered hair behind her ear. She noticed a towel being held to her and looked to the source: Orchie Kou, who was smiling at her.

“Looks like they made you bleed quite a lot before we got here,” stated Orchie. Kurosagi nodded taking the towel from him. She wiped the blood off her face and added, “It was quite difficult, but I managed to beat the guards and force the weaker ones to hide in obvious places using fear.” Orchie nodded. Orchie looked at Kurosagi’s face and noted, “So this is how Megan Wallace looks like.” Kurosagi nodded and added, “But Wallace-San’s stomach is a lot bigger though.”

“Well Hatori mentioned that your new client was pregnant.”

Orchie chuckled and added, “It was so lucky that you found a client that was related to the Byakko Followers. Now all we need to do is arrest the leader and then the Byakko Followers will fall, so what’s the bastard’s name.”

Kurosagi frowned as she ran the towel over her arms.

“Anthony Gooding.”

Orchie’s eyes widened.

“Are you serious?”

Kurosagi nodded and stated, “I will make him pay, so don’t interfere.” Orchie nodded with seriousness in his eyes.

“I wouldn’t dream of stopping you.”

“Detective Kou!”

Orchie and Kurosagi looked at one of the police officers.

“What is it?” asked Orchie. The police officer pointed toward Anthony’s room.

“I think one of the Byakko Followers escaped from that room.”

Kurosagi knew that no one ran into that room when she began to fight and she also remembered that she didn’t see Anthony among the panicked followers.

“He got away.”

“What?” asked Orchie looking at Kurosagi. Kurosagi glanced at Orchie with seriousness in her eyes.

“Did you already go to my complex to arrest the Byakko Followers that might be there?” demanded Kurosagi. Orchie nodded and added, “Hatori thought that your client might be in danger, so I did send policemen and was notified before getting here that the intruders were arrested.”

“What about my client, Megan Wallace, Kohaku Hiwatari, and Utsuho Khan?”

“Now that you mention it, my men didn’t notify me that they were there or not,” reported Orchie. Kurosagi suddenly ran pass Orchie making him gasp.

“Where are you going?” exclaimed Orchie. Kurosagi glanced at Orchie and said, “If the Byakko Followers were there and the leader saw me before escaping then he is heading there to get Wallace-San and her child.” With that, Kurosagi was out the door at an incredible speed.

Orchie stared at the place where she stood before and clenched his hand.

Kurosagi knew that Hatori would tell me about her client’s safety. She trusts him.

Orchie felt like he was being torn from the inside, but he knew that he had to help gather the majority of the Byakko Followers before any found the chance to escape.

Kurosagi studied the streets when she was forced to go with her kidnappers and knew her way back to the Complex. She turned various streets at an incredible speed sending discarded papers flying and people gasping in surprise. Kurosagi soon reached her complex that now had no sign of the Byakko Followers or the officers that arrested them only to fall to her knees. Kurosagi cursed under her breath realizing that her legs had grown weak by the excessive use of the ashes.

Kurosagi dragged her legs across the pavement with gritted teeth. She managed to reach the wall under the stairs. Using the strength still in her arms, she slammed her fist against the wall shattering the concealed glass. At that moment, she heard Megan’s screams of pain. Kurosagi peeked into the room that was once hidden and saw Megan on the floor with her legs spread out holding Haku’s hand in a tight grip and Utsuho between her legs telling her to breath.

“Utsuho!” called Kurosagi. Utsuho gasped and looked back finally noticing the broken window and Kurosagi struggling to climb through. Haku smirked and said, “First the cops arrest those men without noticing us and now the window is shattered with Kurosagi in plain sight.” Haku chuckled only to cringe when Megan increased her hold on Haku’s hand.

Kurosagi tumbled into the room cursing under her breath. Utsuho bit his lip. He looked at Megan’s pained expression and then back at Kurosagi. He looked back at Megan and said, “I’m just going to bring her over here.” Megan nodded with her eyes shut. Utsuho stood up with blood covering his hand and ran to Kurosagi. He lifted her up bridal style and asked, “Is it over?” Kurosagi frowned.

“It will be soon, so please bring me to Wallace-San,” stated Kurosagi. Utsuho nodded and went back to Megan. He placed Kurosagi before Megan gently. Kurosagi looked at Megan and said, “I know you lied to me, but I know it was because you were scared.” Megan nodded with tears in her eyes.

“I’m not angry, since I finally found the Byakko Followers, but it won’t end until the Bureau has the leader.”

Megan was panting as she asked, “Anthony isn’t caught yet?”

“He will be and hopefully after you give birth,” stated Kurosagi. Kurosagi placed her hand in-between Megan’s legs and felt the head of the baby.

“I need you to start pushing,” instructed Kurosagi. Megan shook her head.

“It hurts,” muttered Megan.

“I know it does, but you need to feel this pain to bring this life you protected into this world. NOW PUSH!”

Megan pushed screaming at the same time. Haku looked away feeling sick to his stomach, while Utsuho looked on with wide eyes. Kurosagi continued to encourage Megan to push. As she did this, Utsuho remembered Kurosagi’s smile as she encouraged him to walk when he was a child. He snapped out of his thoughts when he heard the cries of a baby. He focused and saw Kurosagi holding a newborn baby girl in her arms covered in blood and clear liquid.

“The baby is a girl, congratulations,” stated Kurosagi as she handed the baby to Megan, who finally let go of Haku’s hand. As Megan held the baby, Haku was cradling his pain pulsing hand and Kurosagi was cutting the umbilical cord from the baby. Megan’s face was filled with happiness as she cradled her baby.

“Thank you,” whispered Megan. Kurosagi nodded and added, “Looks like you didn’t bleed too much, so you should be fine.” Megan nodded.

Utsuho smiled at the sight, until he suddenly saw a man he never seen before enter the room through the broken window pointing a gun toward Kurosagi.

“Get away from my baby,” stated the man. Before the man could pull the trigger, Utsuho redirected the shot to the ceiling by pushing the gun away and tackled the man to the ground. Utsuho and the man wrestled on the ground as Haku and Kurosagi finally took notice of the man.

“It’s him,” stated Kurosagi recognizing Anthony. Kurosagi would have run at him, but her legs still couldn’t move, so she looked at Haku and said, “Help Utsuho out.” Haku nodded and rushed at the wrestling scene. Haku managed to pull Anthony away from Utsuho, but Anthony pulled the trigger again hitting Utsuho’s shoulder. Utsuho gasped in pain.

“I’ll kill that monster and get my baby!” yelled Anthony. Utsuho held his bleeding shoulder shaking in pain. Haku yanked the gun from Anthony’s hand and yelled, “You have some nerve bastard!”

“Haku!” yelled Kurosagi getting Haku’s attention.

“Make him face me,” demanded Kurosagi. Haku nodded forcing Anthony to look toward Kurosagi. Kurosagi stared at Anthony and demanded, “Are you the leader of the Byakko Followers?” Anthony glared at Kurosagi.

“I am, but tell me now why you have Megan’s face!” yelled Anthony. Kurosagi smirked.

“I don’t have to answer you, but you have to answer me. Now tell me you forced the doctor to change the DNA results.”

“I didn’t. Megan’s baby is mine.”

“Wrong answer. The doctor already confessed. The baby is not yours,” stated Kurosagi. Anthony gritted his teeth.

“Another question: when did you take over the Byakko Followers?”

“Three years ago after our previous leader passed away,” answered Anthony realizing that it was best to answer Kurosagi’s questions.

“Now tell me who was your first kill?” demanded Kurosagi her voice growing serious. Anthony clenched his hand.

“My first kill in the Byakko Followers was an agent of the Bureau. I was able to get information from his notebook before dissecting him alive.”

“Tell me his name,” ordered Kurosagi. Anthony smirked and answered, “Anthony Gooding.” Megan gasped in surprise and asked, “So he used the name of someone he murdered?” Kurosagi nodded and added, “Byakko Followers name themselves after their first murder victim to feel power.”

“Now tell me your true name.”

Anthony began to laugh and said, “My old name is long dead.” Kurosagi yanked a strand of hair from her head and ran it across her lips making it grow solid. She threw it at Anthony’s forehead. The strand sank into his forehead making him scream out in agony. Kurosagi glared hard at Anthony.

“Anthony was a kind man. He was annoying at times, but was willing to learn everything I knew. He called me kind and got angry when the others spoke badly of me. He wanted to help me, so he infiltrated the Byakko Followers to help with my investigation. He got caught and tortured to death. He was cut up so badly that no one recognized him until the DNA testing. People called him a fool, but he was truly kind. You have no right to steal his name.”

Kurosagi held her hand at the now nameless man.

“Your words of confession and the bodies of infants revealed the truth of the Byakko Followers now fall into the darkness!” yelled Kurosagi. The man screamed before passing out into Haku’s arms. Haku dropped the man to the ground and stated, “They always pass out.”

Kurosagi lowered her hand and looked at Megan with a smile pulling out a running recorder from her tattered skirt.

“Your baby and you are now safe,” stated Kurosagi. Megan nodded and then grew sad.

“So he used the name of your friend, a person he murdered,” stated Megan. Kurosagi nodded and added, “It doesn’t concern you now.”

Kurosagi looked back toward Utsuho, who was staggering to her with pain in his face.

“It hurts,” muttered Utsuho. Kurosagi smiled and held her arms out to Utsuho.

“I’ll make it better,” stated Kurosagi. Utsuho stared at Kurosagi and then burst into tears. He immediately jumped into Kurosagi’s arms burying his face into her chest.

“I was so scared that he was going to kill you mom,” cried Utsuho. Kurosagi chuckled and rubbed Utsuho’s back telling him to calm down.

Haku and Megan stared at the two with confusion in their faces.

“Mom?” they asked in unison. Utsuho flinched still hugging Kurosagi. Kurosagi chuckled looking at Megan and Haku.

“Utsuho always called me mom as a child,” stated Kurosagi. Haku looked at Utsuho and asked, “Is that why you didn’t want to call her by name?” Utsuho remained silent with redness in his cheeks.

Haku tried to make Utsuho talk as the sirens approached the complex.

Hatori slept soundly in his hospital room, but began to toss and turn when he began to see visions of Kurosagi covered in blood and saying goodbye to Hatori. Hatori snapped awake panting. Hatori placed a hand to his forehead with a sigh.

“There’s no reason for her to say goodbye,” muttered Hatori.

“Ogami-San?”

Hatori flinched and looked to his side only to see Kurosagi back in her original form standing before the open door.

“Kurosagi?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi nodded approaching Hatori.

“You’ve been out since last night, so how are you feeling now?” asked Kurosagi. Hatori held his head.

“Still tired, what time is it?”

“Morning.”

“Morning?” exclaimed Hatori. Kurosagi nodded.

“Then what happened with the case?” asked Hatori quickly.

“Everything was solved. The Bureau has all of the Byakko Followers including the leader in custody along with the confession recording I made, so Megan Wallace is now safe along with her beautiful baby girl.”

“She gave birth already?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi nodded and added, “She’s going to move back home to watch over her baby and her lover in the hospital.”

“So he’s still in the hospital?”

Kurosagi nodded and added, “He’s awake at least and is looking forward to seeing his baby.” Hatori frowned.

“I didn’t do anything this time,” muttered Hatori. Kurosagi smirked.

“You did plenty. You told Orchie the information I needed you to tell him and even noticed the danger Wallace-San would be in and had Orchie sent help to my office.”

“So I was helpful?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi nodded. Hatori suddenly held Kurosagi’s hand making her raise an eyebrow at him.

“Is something wrong?” asked Kurosagi.

“Why didn’t you tell me about the Byakko Followers earlier? If I knew I could have helped better,” stated Hatori. Kurosagi frowned lowering her head.

“Let me tell you a story.”

“What?”

“Three years ago, I was already part of the Bureau. At that time I had an assistant named Anthony Gooding. It was his dream to work in the Bureau and was so excited to work under my guidance. I taught him what I knew and he wrote it into his notebook that he kept in his pocket. One day, we had a league on the Byakko Followers. All detectives were told to keep it a secret from the assistants, but I told Anthony because he overheard Orchie and I talking about the Byakko Followers. He went missing and it was later discovered that he infiltrated the Byakko Followers to gather information. We got there too late to save him. He was cut up beyond recognition already dead on site. I saw a glimpse of his murderer, who escaped through the only window in the room with Anthony’s notebook in hand. I never got to say goodbye to him and the Byakko Followers used his notebook’s information to keep avoiding the Bureau.”

“One of your assistants died because of the Byakko Followers?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi nodded clenching her hand.

“I didn’t tell you about them to protect you from them. I didn’t want to lose another assistant because of them,” stated Kurosagi. Hatori stared at Kurosagi and remembered Kurosagi’s blood covered form the previous day. That’s when he truly realized that Kurosagi doesn’t tell him certain things to protect him and her blood covered form was one of them. Hatori hugged Kurosagi making her flinch.

“What are you doing Ogami-San?” asked Kurosagi.

“I’m thanking you and I’m still pretty depressed I couldn’t do more, so don’t push me away,” stated Hatori. Kurosagi smirked and gave out a chuckle.

“Very cunning, Ogami-San.”

Hatori was suddenly hit by a bouquet of daisies forcing him away from Kurosagi. Hatori held the flowers and looked up only to see an angry Utsuho glaring at him with a confused Kohaku standing on his right and Peter Khan standing on his left with Lucille holding his pant leg.

“Utsuho, Kohaku, Lucille, and Peter, you guys are here too?” asked Hatori. Kohaku nodded and stated, “We wanted to check on you and brought flowers, but Utsuho-Kun seems to have used them as a weapon.” Utsuho scoffed and stated, “He looks fine, so we didn’t have to come.” Peter placed a hand firmly on Utsuho’s head making him flinch.

“YOU had to come to apologize for troubling Kurosagi and Hatori,” stated Peter. Utsuho groaned and said, “I helped mom a lot, so there’s no need to apologize.” Utsuho flinched realizing what he said. Peter turned red to the cheeks, while Kohaku, Hatori, and Lucille looked confused.

“Mom?” they said in unison. Kurosagi chuckled.

“I told Haku yesterday, but Utsuho calls me mom since he could talk,” stated Kurosagi. Hatori gasped in surprise and asked, “Why?”

“Well legally I was his mom for six years,” admitted Kurosagi. Hatori was silent and then looked toward Peter, who was trying to avert his eyes.

“What is Kurosagi talking about?” interrogated Hatori. Peter sighed with red cheeks.

“When my wife died and Kurosagi moved in, child protection services were planning to remove Utsuho from my care, so I told them I remarried to Kurosagi.”

“What?” exclaimed Hatori and Kohaku.

“I was desperate and Utsuho already considered Kurosagi his mom.”

Kurosagi crossed her arms and stated, “Well Peter made a marriage license for us, so I was legally married to Peter.”

Hatori seemed to be in shock as he looked at Kurosagi.

“Married?” muttered Hatori. Kurosagi nodded and added, “I didn’t know about the license until people started to question why Utsuho called me mom.” Kurosagi glanced at Peter.

“I was angry and decided to leave Peter’s house to continue my travels,” stated Kurosagi. Peter looked away sadly.

Utsuho groaned and added, “I remember that day. I begged you to stay, but you didn’t. I hated you because of that.” Kurosagi chuckled.

“I couldn’t stay anyway since I look like this, but I apologize for hurting you, Utsuho,” stated Kurosagi. Utsuho began to tear up and hugged Kurosagi saying, “Mommy.” Kurosagi sighed patting Utsuho’s head.

Peter sighed and then felt Lucille tug his pants. Peter looked at Lucille and asked, “Is something wrong?”

“If Kurosagi was your wife, does that make her my mom too?” asked Lucille in confusion. Peter turned beet red and exclaimed, “I’m not married to her anymore!” Lucille smiled and said, “That’s good to hear since I want to be her husband.”

“What?” exclaimed Peter. Utsuho pulled away from Kurosagi and glared at Lucille.

“No way, mom is going to get back together with dad someday!” yelled Utsuho. Lucille shook his head and stated, “Dad had his chance, so it’s my turn.”

“NO!”

Peter was trying to calm his sons down with Kohaku, Hatori, and Kurosagi watching. Kohaku glanced at Kurosagi and said, “I never thought you would be married before.” Kurosagi smirked.

“That was a long time ago and Utsuho needs to accept someday that I can’t be his mom anymore,” stated Kurosagi. Hatori frowned, until he noticed the package next to her feet.

“What’s that Kurosagi?” asked Hatori. Kurosagi smirked picking up the package.

“My payment from Wallace-San.”

Kurosagi went to Utsuho getting his attention and handed him the package saying, “It’s late, but happy birthday, Utsuho.” Utsuho opened the package and saw the dark blue laptop he favored. He looked at Kurosagi and smiled brightly saying, “Thanks mom.”

Kohaku smiled and said, “So that’s why she got the laptop from Wallace-San.”

Hatori looked confused as he asked, “But the payment was $700 right?” Hatori suddenly remembered the price labels of the laptops and chuckled.

“She used the money to pay for the laptop,” muttered Hatori.

Kurosagi suddenly went back to Hatori and said, “After I check you out, let’s eat in that café with the good cookies.” Hatori smiled and nodded.

A laptop package suddenly hit his head making him gasp. He glanced at Utsuho and saw him still in throwing position glaring daggers at him.

“Don’t get close to my mom!” yelled Utsuho.

“She’s not your mom!” retaliated Hatori finally losing his temper.

“She is too!” wailed out Utsuho. Peter had to drag Utsuho out of the room with Lucille’s help.

Hatori was fuming as he glared at the closed door with Kurosagi staring at him in amusement and Kohaku looking at him nervously.

“I never thought Utsuho would have a mother complex,” muttered Hatori. Kurosagi chuckled.

“Well at least he calls to me again with a name,” stated Kurosagi. Kohaku nodded and added, “It would be better for him to call you Kurosagi-Sensei.” Kurosagi chuckled in amusement.

Hatori frowned and said, “I’m still mad at that kid.”

“You’ll get over it,” stated Kurosagi. Hatori smiled holding Kurosagi’s hand.

“Of course I will and I will still continue being your assistant, Kurosagi.”

Kurosagi held his hand back with a smirk.

“I’ll make sure to order plenty of cookies for us at the café.”

Previous Chapter
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s