Yagami Detective Agency lay quiet, save for the rhythmic drip-drip of the leaky tap into a discarded ramen bowl in the dirty sink. Vague neon light filtered through the windows, casting indistinct shadows across the darkened room; far-away sirens and flickering signs painting the backdrop of the city outside. Kaito sat with hit feet slung up on the old scuffed desk in the corner, arms folded and head low on his broad chest, snoring loudly. He didn't often crash at the office any more after finally landing a better apartment, but Tak had asked him to watch the office tonight until he got back. There was only so much pinball and free mobile games a guy could play, and Kaito had found his eyes slowly closing as the small screen brought on the beginnings of a headache.
A distant series of shouts and the telltale sounds of a ruckus echoed from outside, and Kaito grumbled under his breath, shifting in the office chair and rubbing at his eyes blearily. He squinted towards the window and checked his watch - 12.10am. He sighed to himself. Tak had started working really late these days, not heading out until the late afternoon at the earliest and holing up in his office most of the day. He'd said he was having a big file organization blitz of the office, but whenever Kaito had walked in he was always flat out on the sofa with the blinds closed, sometimes making the strangest noises in his sleep.
Kaito had been pretty worried about him lately; he knew the man well and it was obvious something had changed recently, he just couldn't put a finger on exactly what.
More shouts and a louder crash sounded from outside, closer this time, and Kaito frowned, rising and peering with slight apprehension through the dusty blinds. There was nothing to see on this narrow side street, no-one was out walking at this time even though Kamurocho was usually so alive. Brawls were hardly uncommon around here, and Kaito withdrew, about to write it off until he heard the door at the front of the building suddenly slam, and uneven footsteps stumble clumsily up the stairs. Kaito clenched his fists and waited, ready to protect the office if he had to, expecting thugs or thieves.
A second later the door crashed open and it was Tak who came half-falling into the room, grabbing the side of the sofa before slumping down heavily. Kaito stared in shock, and his mouth fell open when he saw him clutching a large, messy wound in his stomach. Tak looked up, breathing heavily and wincing, “Hey, Kaito-san.”
Kaito rushed forwards, clicking on the light switch and kneeling next to Tak's thin frame, slouched awkwardly to the side.
“T-Tak! What the hell happened!? Who did this!?” Kaito demanded, a tinge of panic in his deep voice. He fumbled in his trouser pocket for his phone, “ I'll call an ambulance, you'll be okay, just - “
Tak grabbed his wrist with his free hand, shaking his head slowly.
“Kaito-san, no, I - “ he took a deep, shuddering breath, “I really can't go to a hospital.”
“Why the hell not? Look at you, you're bleeding out all over the couch!”
He reached and gently pulled Tak's hand away from the wound, the thinner man cringing as Kaito pulled up his ruined white T-shirt to inspect it closer. It was bad; a long, deep gouge like a heavy, sharp tool had cut into him, running from just below his ribcage and over his skinny stomach to the jut of his hip.
“Tak, you gotta go to a doctor! This looks REAL bad!”
Tak took another deep breath, staring at Kaito dead-on with exhaustion in his eyes.
“Look, Kaito-san, uhh... look, there's something I gotta tell you. It's gonna sound absolutely ridiculous and you're obviously not gonna believe it but I...I'm gonna need your help.”
Kaito stared back at him with his head cocked to the side, his strong features wrinkled in confusion.
“Okay? Lay it on me I guess.”
“So, i'll just come right out and say it, okay? Okay.” Tak paused, gaze flicking away for a second before looking back at him dead in the eyes.
“I'm a vampire. I drink blood.”
Tak scowled and looked up in exasperation.
“Yeah, obviously it sounds really really stupid when you just say it, but there you go. Okay, so now that's out of the way -”
“Wait, wait, sorry, you wanna run that by me again!? I could've sworn you just said you're a vampire. Did you hit your head too, buddy? You've clearly got a REALLY BAD concussion. So, about that doctor I mentioned -”
“Am I really gonna be making shit up right now?!? And no I haven't hit my damn head.” Tak grimaced again, pressing his hand hard against the gaping wound. His frizzy hair stuck to his forehead with sweat, and the whites of his eyes were painfully bloodshot. He gritted his teeth. “Look, don't ask me how, I don't remember. I've been trying to figure this all out since it happened. But I do know that if I can replace some of this blood I'm losing here I won't need any doctors, okay?”
Kaito stood up, holding up his hands and shaking his head in bewilderment.
“Look, this is kinda a lot to take in. I'm looking at my buddy sitting in front of me covered in his own blood and suddenly he's tellin' me he's some shittin' made-up thing from the movies? That drinks people's blood? Seriously, I feel like I just walked into the weirdest fever dream in history.”
“You think I don't know it's nuts!? Try waking up in a back alley with blood all over your face with no idea how you got there or what happened to you? Having to work all this shit out myself? I didn't believe it for days and I nearly starved to death and I had to -” Tak trailed off and sighed. “Okay, look, I don't need you to believe me right now, I just need-”
He stopped when he saw Kaito rolling up the sleeve of his loud orange silk shirt, flexing his palm as he stuck his wrist out in front of his friends face.
“Okay, if you're really gonna insist about this, go ahead. Show me. I think you're talking totally crazy and you're probably horribly delirious but, sure, go ahead.”
Tak stared at his friends arm, dazed. “What, really?”
Kaito nodded. “If it'll shut you up, yeah. Do whatever you need to do. Then we'll actually get you some help.”
Tak swallowed hard, and Kaito swore his eyes glinted. Positioning himself painfully upright with a grunt, he gingerly grabbed Kaito's arm and pulled it closer. “You know it's gonna hurt, right? I've gotta, like...bite? Unless you want to -”
“Good god, just get on with it! If you're gonna prove it, prove it. Before you permanently stain your floor
as well as your shirt and the sofa.”
Tak's eyes flicked back down to Kaito's wrist, watching the small pulse beat enticingly beneath the skin. Kaito's eyes widened as Tak dipped his head forward and settled his mouth over the soft flesh. Two distinct points scraped across his skin before he sank his teeth in hard. Kaito's arm jerked in reflex and he yelped in pain, the muscles tensing up as the blood was drained from his vein. Tak's fingers tightened around his partner's wrist, a strange low growl sounding from deep at the back of his throat, his tongue pushing against the hot slick of the bite.
“What the fuck, Tak?! You …-!”
Kaito felt his arm going numb, Tak's hold on it crushingly strong, blood running down in thin streams to his elbow. His head was spinning; was this actually happening!? He wasn't sure what he'd been expecting but, as insane as it was, here they were.
After a few more moments Tak's hold finally loosened, and Kaito jerked his arm away, clasping his hand around his wrist tightly. Deep reddish-purple bruises were forming where he'd been gripped so tightly, his skin burning hot and inflamed. He stared gone-out at Tak, who slumped backwards with a blissed-out expression, blood smeared obscenely around his lips.
“Holy shi – I mean, what in the fucking - ! Did you actually just do that!?” Kaito blustered, staring down at his wrist, the two deep welts still oozing and stinging hard.
“I did tell you.” murmured Tak flatly, staring up at the ceiling and licking at his lips absently. He shifted a little in place, stretching his wounded side. “This'll close up in a few minutes. I think I could have done with a bit more but, I didn't want to - ...hey Kaito-san? You okay?”
Kaito had fallen backwards against the wall, still clutching his wrist, his eyes wide as plates. “You're...! You're actually...! How did...how are you... -”
“Guessing you believe me now? I was gonna ask you to fetch some bags for me from Tsukumo but I guess this was a good way of getting the point across too. Thanks, by the way.”
“Uhh....no problem...I guess...” Kaito felt absolutely floored; his head was fuzzy and he couldn't even process everything that just happened.
His best pal was a fucking vampire!?