IX: Note Blue
The door to the nightclub was opened by a man dressed in white. His skin was pale and his one visible eye was a sort of topaz, but there was something disconcerting about the texture of his hair and the thickness of his lips.... I realized a moment later that the man was an African albino—the whitest black man I have ever seen. The open and contemptuous way he stared at us confirmed my suspicion that, for most people, he passed for white.
“We’re closed,” he said, as soft as paper. His voice was a surprisingly pleasant alto tone.
Matsuda put on a painfully big smile. He was clearly intimidated. “Hello, Rem, sorry to bother you.” He turned to us. “Gentlemen, this is Rem, owner of the Note Blue Club.” He turned to Rem. “Rem, this is Light Yagami and L...” He trailed off, looking at me.
“Just L,” I clarified.
“L,” he repeated to Rem. “They’d like to ask Misamisa a few questions, if that’s all right?” His painful grin widened.
Rem’s one eye passed over Light and myself, evaluating us. Light drew back slightly. “Reporters?” Rem asked.
“L is a detective, actually. They’d just like to speak with Misamisa about Kira, hear her say the same things she told me?” It was phrased like a statement and said like a question. I noticed that Matsuda was sweating a bit.
Rem’s dark gaze turned to me, and then to Light again. “I don’t like Misa being involved in this.”
I stepped forward. “Ms. Amane is already involved in this. How difficult her involvement will be depends on how willing she is to cooperate.”
Rem’s heavy stare leaned its full weight on me alone this time. “Come in,” he said quietly, at last.
The interior of the Note Blue club was unremarkable. It was dressed in muted shades of blue, with cabaret-style tables and a modest orchestra pit by the stage.
On the stage, dressed in red and black lace, was Misa Amane. She sang as if she were truly in love, an older, upbeat nonsense song about a paper moon. The orchestra was empty save for a lanky man accompanying her on the piano.
I glanced over at Matsuda, who had a ridiculous smile on his face, and Light, who looked unimpressed but polite. He obviously hadn’t been much of a fan. “I thought Xeras was the only one Ms. Amane allowed to accompany her,” I remarked, more to myself than anyone else.
“Zealous,” Rem said, using the musician’s nickname, then paused. “Zealous died four months ago.”
My first thought was ‘another part of that era, gone.’ My second thought I voiced. “How?”
Rem kept his eye trained on Misa, an odd expression on his face. “You’re the detective.” He laughed to himself, a simple exhalation of breath. “You may speak with Misa while she takes a break.” He winced. “With the way Freddi’s playing, it shouldn’t be long.”
Sure enough, less than a minute later Misa had stopped singing and started yelling. “I told you to follow me. Follow me
. Not fall behind me! Honestly!” The pianist cringed. In a flurry of red and black lace, she strode backstage. Matsuda quickly chased after her, calling her name.
Light and I shared a look. He was obviously amused. We followed the departed pair, with Rem walking close behind us.Next Chapter