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Case 4: The Demon's in the Details

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Yasu grimaced when he woke up. At least his breathing wasn't painful this time. But something tugged in his side when he tried to shift even slightly.

He opened his eyes to a dimly lit room. He couldn't make out much without his glasses. He really hoped they didn't break somehow.

He sufficed to feel around and see what happened. Through the thin hospital gown, blanket, and a layer of bandages, he could just feel stitches all across his side. He let his hand fall, still across himself perhaps to keep himself together, as he recalled how they got there in the first place.

Deciding he wanted to see, he tried to make out where the side table was. He tried to reach to his left, but got a little tangled in an IV tube. He had gingerly extricated himself and was reaching again to search for his glasses when he heard the door open.

"Shounen?" A hesitant voice called.

"Bou--" He was cut off by his own coughs. He hadn't realized how thirsty he was at first. Then came the realization that he didn't know how long he had been out. The fact he could move without too much trouble was a good sign though.

"Hey now. Don't push yourself." Monk came closer and put a cup of water in Yasu's hand. He helped him to sit up as well.

"Didn't think you'd be my first visitor," Yasu said honestly once he'd had enough. "My glasses? I'd love to be able to see my dear Bou-san."

"Just for that, I might not give them to you," Monk said as he handed them over.

Yasu carefully put them on, not quite sure of his range of motion with the stitches. He sighed a little when he could see again. Though he didn't appreciate the worried look he was receiving.

"You know, the doctor said it was a miracle you survived."

"That miracle has a name," he replied lightly.

"She's also tending to Mai right now. Poor thing has been attached to Naru and only really answering her and Masako."

"Mediums," Yasu said and shrugged his good shoulder.

"They'll know how to help her best. I can send her in later though."

"I'd appreciate that."

Yasu took another sip in the silence.

"You were out for a few days. If she wasn't with Mai, she was here." Monk nodded towards the empty chair next to him. "I think she met your mother too."

"Thanks for ruining the moment."  Yasu looked up at the ceiling. "I would much rather have been present for that."

"She did fine though. Your mother took it as well as last time you ended up in a hospital bed."

"Comforting," he said dryly. "Still, would rather be able to be there when it comes out to my mother, who was none to pleased at my change in major, that my girlfriend has insane abilities bordering on superhuman and is firmly embedded in the subject that took me away from law."

Monk laughed a little. "Point taken."

"How did everyone else do?" Yasu asked.

"You had the worst of it," Monk answered. "Zoe was in only for a day for observation. And Mai...they can't do much for what she went through here."

"Was it that bad? Whatever she saw?" 

"Must be. I've never seen her like this. She hasn't told anyone yet. Zoe...well..."

"What is she trying to do now?"

"Save the world?" Monk tried. Yasu gave him an unamused look. Monk sighed. "She'd be better to explain it, but the gist is that Mai would astral project and she would connect with her spirit to see it for herself."

Yasu sighed in exasperation. "At least this is mostly familiar territory this time."

"Mai won't do it though. She's adamantly refusing."

"It must be really bad then. What about Naru?"

"If she tells him, I doubt he'll tell us unless it's absolutely necessary, but the case is already over. Masako cleared us."

"A mystery for another time. Once Mai heals." 

Monk hummed in agreement. They were interrupted by a light knock on the door.

"Sorry, I heard voices. I know how worried you were though, Bou-san."

"Aww, I knew you cared!" Yasu exclaimed.

Monk sighed and dropped his shoulders. "Why'd you have to go and say that?"

"Because you beat me to it," Zoe said with a too sweet smile.

"Well, my cue to leave," Monk said and headed for the door. "How's Mai?" he asked quietly.

"The same. Maybe the news will perk her up."

Monk nodded and wandered off down the hall. Ayako cut him off before he could reach the elevators. 

"How is he?" she asked.

"Finally awake. Might be best to give them some time," he suggested.

"She was rather irritated yesterday."

"How's Mai?"

"Sleeping, actually."

Monk looked at her in shock. "Really?"

Ayako nodded. A grin spread across her face. "It's actually a cute picture. Come on."

Monk followed her to the lobby. He stopped and laughed to himself. Side by side were Mai and Naru with her head on his shoulder as he flipped through a book.

"I think that's the most peaceful she's looked in days," Monk commented.

Naru looked up from his book. "She told me what happened."

"And?" Ayako pressed.

"She asked me to not discuss it with anyone, but it pertained to the case. Takeshi put her through...a lot on the astral plane."

"If it was part of the case, can't we read about it later?" Monk asked.

Naru looked back down at his book. "There's a higher level of confidentiality for things like this. After hearing what happened, I agreed. If she chooses to tell you later, that's her business."

A tense silence followed.

"She hasn't slept well the past few days. Unfortunately, it would be rather unbecoming for me to stay with her," Naru said.

"Well, that's hardly a problem. I can stay with her. She can even stay at my place if it would help," Ayako said.

"Your place? It looks like a jungle in there. She'll get lost for sure," Monk said.

Ayako huffed. "It's not like she can stay with you."

"Actually," Naru cut in, "you were my first choice."

Ayako looked away and tried to hide her satisfied smile. "Well, if you insist."

"Just until she's mostly back to normal."

She nodded in understanding. "Yes, of course. I'll do whatever I can to help. Should I wake her to head out now? I imagine the good news about Yasu will help her too."

"No, we're fine for now. Let her wake up on her own."

Naru ignored the knowing smirk he recieved from Monk to go back to reading. Ayako led him away while they waited.

"It's a good thing Takeshi is already gone or I'd have dealt with him myself," Naru said quietly to himself. He found he didn't mind how long he would have to sit there as long as Mai slept. She definitely deserved it.