"L's coming!" Mello came in. "No one told us!"
Near looked up from his little puzzle of a farm with little chicks on it. "I knew. Watari told us a long time ago," said Near.
Mello was silent for a moment. His jaw dropped. "Really?" He slumped. "No one told me...Why is he here anyway?"
"He's going to take care of us while the caretaker is out. He thinks its a good idea if we hang out with him to evaluate who he wants to pick. It was his idea."
"This wasn't my idea, Watari," said L as he walked in the Wammy House corridors. He was on the phone with him.
"It's the only option we had. The caretaker didn't find anyone else and you need to start analyzing your successors. You hear me young man?" asked Watari.
"Yes sir..." L frowned.
"But why am I stuck babysitting these two anyway? Can't they take care of themselves?"
"They're only seven and eight, L."
"So what, I'm taking them to my place to watch them?"
"Alright. It's just two kids, how bad could it be?"
L walked in the door. There were young children scattered about the room playing games. Everyone became dead silent when L entered, all knowing who he was. He just stood there, hands in his pockets.
"Uh....which one of you is Near and Mello?" he asked.
A child with white hair sitting alone in the corner playing with a puzzle and wearing what seemed to be white pajamas caught his eye. Then he felt a tug at his shirt and looked down. A child with blonde straight hair was looking up at him.
"I'm Mello," he said.
"Where's the other one?" asked L.
Mello pointed over at the white haired child. "That's him. He likes to play by himself a lot."
"I thought so. Near!" He called. "Come with me."
Near got up and picked up a handful of pieces as he ran over to them. L put his hands on their shoulders as they walked out of the door. When they left, the children resumed playing.
"Wait...." said one kid. "If he's just taking them, who's going to take care of us?"
The kids all went wide-eyed with confusion.
The three all rode in L's car. L sat in the backseat between them with his legs propped up in the chair. Mello tugged at his shirt again.
"Why do you sit like that?" he asked.
L looked at him. He really didn't want to be there right now. "I just do. It helps me think better," said L.
L looked over at Near playing with the puzzle pieces he took with him. He was so into what he was doing, he didn't seem to notice L staring at him. L glanced back at Mello.
"Is he always like this?" he asked.
"All the time," said Mello.
"Don't the other kids find him odd?"
"Yes they do. We all don't like him."
"I think you should play with him when we get to the hotel."
The puzzle piece Near was holding fell from his hands. He looked at the two. "I don't like playing with anyone. Everyone else's contribution to my intellegent work is inferior," said Near.
"It's settled then," said L. "You two will play together."
"But I just said-"
"Play TOGETHER!" L turned to face Near with wide eyes, freaking Near out.
"Yes sir..." Near said, a little shaken.
When they arrived at the hotel L was staying in, they all disembarked from the car. He led them up to his room. As soon as Mello saw all the chairs everywhere, he ran from L and Near and started jumping on them.
"Hey! Calm down!" said L.
"No! This is fun!" said Mello smiling.
L looked around. He pulled out a chocolate bar from the drawer. "If you calm down, I'll give you this!" said L, holding up the chocolate.
Mello stopped. "What is it?" he asked.
"Chocolate. Have you ever had it?"
Mello jumped down and took the silver-wrapped chocolate from L. He unwrapped it. "I've never had chocolate before." He took one bite. His eyes grew wide and he froze. He put bigger and bigger bites in his mouth until it was all gone.
"You can have as much as you want if you promise not to jump on the furniture again." L looked at Near who was on the floor playing with his puzzle pieces again. "And if you promise to play with Near."
Mello frowned and looked at Near. "I don't want to play with him!"
L shrugged and took another chocolate bar from the drawer. He handed it to Mello who went darting to Near as soon as he grabbed it. "You two play nice now," he said. L walked to his room and closed the door behind him to resume his detective work. "Easy stuff," he thought to himself. He was investigating some videos left a crime scene. He wasn't through half of the first video when he heard Near yell. He busted into L's room holding his puzzle pieces.
"L! Mello broke my puzzle pieces!" cried Near.
"Near I'm very busy, can't it wai-" said L.
"He broke them!" Near cut him off.
L sighed. "Well, break something of his," he said calmly.
Near smiled and left, shutting the door behind him. L resumed watching the tapes. Just as he was about to find a clue, Mello came in the room holding his face.
"L! Near tried to break my nose!" he cried.
L paused the tape once again. "What now?" he asked.
Mello waddled over to L's chair. He was holding his nose and had teary eyes. "It hurts!"
"Let me see," said L. Mello removed his hands. His nose was red, but it wasn't bleeding, much less broken. "You're fine, Mello."
"But it hurts!" he cried.
"You're fine! Stop being such a baby!"
Mello cried. "I'm not a baby!"
L slapped his forehead. He reached for the drawer in the table next to him. He pulled out another chocolate bar and handed to Mello with his hand still on his forehead. He heard Mello cease crying and felt him take the chocolate from his hands. He looked up and saw Mello running out and shutting the door behind him.
L, again, resumed watching the tapes. He got through half of them and took down notes. After about an hour, he saw the two boys come in.
"We're hungry!" they both said.
"Alright," said L, still watching the tapes.
"Aren't you going to feed us?" asked Mello.
L paused the video. "How can you be hungry, Mello?" He asked. "You've eaten how much chocolate?"
"I haven't eaten anything," said Near.
L threw his hands up in the air in frustration. "Alright, lets get you something to eat," L said getting up.
He walked his usual way into the kitchen: hunched over with his hands in his pockets. The two young children follwed.
L opened his refrigerator revealing cake, ice cream, jello, brownies, parfaits, pie and lots of different desserts. "Enjoy," said L walking away.
"Wait!" said Near. "These are only sweets! Don't you have any real food?"
"What do you mean real food? That's all I eat."
"But...it's not healthy."
"Look, when you're with me, you can eat whatever you want. So go crazy." L walked back in to his room and left the two to eat.
"Wait, L!" called Mello. "Where do babies come from?"
L didn't even turn around, he just opened one of the kitchen drawers and threw another chocolate bar at him. That kept him quiet. L walked on to his room.
It was thirty minutes later when Near came in screaming. "L! Mello hit me!" he yelled.
L didn't say anything, but merely handed Near a bat. Near left. This time, he turned the volume up extra high to hear the tapes better. His phone rang just then. It was Watari. "What is it, Watari," asked L upon answering it.
"I just wanted to see how you and the little ones are doing," said Watari.
"I also wanted to let you know, the caretaker called and will be arriving late. You'll have to put them to bed."
"What? You said I only had to watch them for a few hours!"
"Well something's come up and since they're already at your place, it shouldn't be that difficult of a task. You're L after all. Just make sure they're in the most safe postion you can employ."
Near came in just then. "L! It's Mello!" he yelled.
"Gotta go!" said L, hanging up the phone.
"He's on the balcony!" he said, pulling L's shirt and pointing out the window with his other hand. He let go and started for the door and tripped over his too long pajama pants. L walked over him and ran for the balcony window.
L saw Mello doing handstands on the ledge over a hundred feet above the ground! L flung the glass balcony sliding door open and shouted at Mello. "What are you doing?" he yelled.
Mello was on one hand and trying to do tricks. "I'm an acrobat!" he said.
"Get down from there!" he yelled. He went to grab him, but Mello just stepped away, putting him in further danger.
L ran back inside and with the force of habit, shut the door behind him, only to have Near running after him and hitting the glass door dead on with his face and falling down on his back.
L opened his cabinets and pulled out another chocolate bar. He ran back to the balcony and once more opened the door, ignoring Near on the ground. "Look what I have Mello!" L said, waving it in front of his face.
Mello hopped down from the ledge and took it from L as he ran by. He ran on the chair and sat down to eat it.
"How many chocolate stashes do you have around this place anyway?" asked Near.
"Enough," said L, still a bit shaken. "Alright, you two, why don't you just sit down and watch some TV. Just SIT and don't GET UP," L enphasized the words.
Near sat down in another chair. L turned on the television and flipped through the channels until he came up to some cartoons.
"You kids like this stuff, right?" asked L.
"We don't know," said Near.
"We've never watched TV," said Mello.
"Alright....Well since you don't watch TV you can start. Just don't watch too much, I don't want my sucessors to be braindead." He left.
When L retreated to his room, Mello took the remote. He hit random buttons, making the shows change. He stopped when he came up to a movie that looked like it was about mobsters.
"This is cool!" said Mello, very interested in the program.
"L told us to watch that other thing," said Near.
"So what? This is way better!"
It was around ten o' clock now. L was finishing up his case studies. He rubbed his eyes and looked at the clock. "They've been quiet for hours," thought L. "I guess I should put them to bed." L stood, streched and walked to the living room.
He saw Near on the floor, playing with his puzzle pieces again. Mello was on his knees watching TV still and eating more chocolate.
"Hey, that's not what I put for you to watch," said L.
"I know. But this is better!" said Mello.
The room was dark now with only light coming from the televisions.
"Alright, well, its time for you two to go to bed."
"Awww," said Mello, shrugging.
L turned off the TV and heard Mello yawn. He looked over at Near and saw him getting up as well.
"Where are we going to sleep?" asked Near with heavy eyelids.
L looked at the two children. They were so adorable. "You two can sleep in my bed," said L. He lifted the two up in his arms and brought them to his bed. He set them down, turned on the lamp on the endtable, and pulled the covers apart for them.
"Do you two have any special garments for sleeping?" asked L.
"No, we just sleep in our clothes," said Near.
"Alright." He lifted them both up and placed them in bed. The bed was massive compared to their small size.
"It's so comfy," said Mello. "We never get to sleep like this at the Wammy House."
"Can you read us a story?" asked Near.
"I don't have any stories," said L as he tucked them in.
"You must have something," said Mello.
L walked over to the bookshelf. He fumbled through the books. They were all too big and none had any pictures for them. He thought for a moment. They were his sucessors. They should be smart enough to understand them. He paused. They were his successors. He thought about how he treated them the whole day. They really deserved better. They were orphans just like he was. He thought they deserved at least one night of a parental experience. He went to a chest at the foot of his bed and pulled out a childrens story titled "The Three Little Pigs".
Before he began to read, Near asked, "How come you have bags under your eyes, L? Do you not get enough sleep?"
"I never sleep, Near," said L.
"How do you manage that?" asked Mello.
"I just do. It's far more time efficient if you never sleep."
"Oh," said Near.
As L read, Near listened, but Mello was still lost in thought about the show he watched. When he finished the book, he looked up and found them both sound asleep. He turned off the lamp and tiptoed out into the living room. He looked at his cell phone. No missed calls or messages.
L thought it would be nice if he could give them a nice farewell package. He put together two boxes and filled them with momentos. As he was finished writing the cards, he heard a knock at his door. L answered it. It was his driver.
"The young one's caretaker has arrived. You may bring the children back now," he said.
"Thank you. I'll see you downstairs," said L.
He went back into the room and gently took the two out of bed, careful not to wake them. He brought them both down in his arms and placed them in the backseat. "I'll be right back," L said as he ran back to his room to get thier gifts.
L sat in between them all the way back. He watched them sleep and thought about his descision to make them his successors. He knew he made the right choice. Near was smart and figured things out well. Mello was strong and wasn't afraid of anything. Watching them sleep melted away all of the stress the day had caused them.
When they arrived at the Wammy House, the caretaker took the two boys while L carried in the presents.
"Thank you so much for looking after them," he whispered, not wanting to wake them.
"It was not problem," said L holding the packages walking with him. "I am still wondering though...If I was just looking after these two, who was watching the other orphans here?"
"Why I was."
L stopped. "What do you mean?"
"I was here the whole time."
"Then why did you need me to look after them if you were here the whole time?"
"It was Watari's idea. He thought it would be nice if you got to know your successors a little better."
"I chose them based on the information given to me by thier teachers. It was like hell taking care of them though."
"Maybe, but did you at least have fun? Wasn't it all worth while in the end?"
L paused and thought about it. "Yes," he smiled. "It was."
The caretaker placed them in their bunkbeds where the other children slept. When he walked out of the hallway, L handed the caretaker the two packages.
"These are for the boys. I thought they would like them," said L.
"I'll give them to them in the moring," said the caretaker smiling.
"Thank you and good night." L turned and left.
The next morning, Near and Mello opened their packages. Near's box was filled with lots of toys and even a new puzzle! Enclosed was a letter saying:
looking at you play with your puzzle all by yourself remind me so much of me at your age. I really hope you enjoy the toys I grew up with. And who knows? Maybe you'll become another me one day.
Mello opened his package and almost cried. It was filled to the brim with chocolate bars and a book about old gangsters from America in the early 1900's. His letter said:
I have never seen someone love sweets as much as I until I met you. These should last you a few days. Just promise me you won't be jumping on anymore dangerous ledges. And I even gave you one of my favorite books to read instead of doing it.
The caretaker and Watari watched the two boys and their packages from L. "Do you think it was a good idea for L to give them such things?" asked the caretaker. "Don't you think they're still too impressionable?"
"Oh, L knows what he's doing," said Watari.
After the two finished reading their letters, they both smiled and said at the same time, "Let's go there again!"