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Stuck

Title: Stuck
Author: Ran-dezvous
Genre: Angst and General
Fandom: Detective Conan
Character: Mouri Kogorou, with mentions of Mouri Ran, Edogawa Conan, and Amuro Tooru
Word Count: 851
Rating: PG (for alcohol use and mild profanity)
Original Publish Date: February 28, 2013 (on Amnesty Day at 31_days)
Disclaimer: I don't have the creative stamina to write the never-ending manga that is Detective Conan. Aoyama Gosho does.
Notes: Written for the February 6, 2013 prompt, "Where I live, everyone is sleeping." (31_days) and for Challenge #4: Alcohol (manycases1truth).
Summary: After another night filled with much drinking, Kogorou comes home and finds himself locked out of his own apartment.


A cool breeze blows against Mouri Kogorou's warm, flushed cheeks as he makes his way through the empty (but, thankfully, not dark) streets of Beika. While he normally enjoys such a sensation, he doesn't care any less about it right now. Nor does he care about the handful of glances he has attained from the rare passersby; if the tie wrapped around his forehead bothers them, then that's their problem. His only concern is to come home, have a drink of water, and crash into the oblivion that is sleep.

His legs wobble as he walks, barely able to go in a straight line—to the point he needs to press his left hand against the buildings beside him for support. He groans at how much easier it is to get to the beer garden than it is to get back from it; he wonders why he frequently subjects himself to this torture in the first place, but it doesn't last long as he notices the sign for Poirot, the café situated below his humble abode.

His eyes widen; a tiny smile appears on his weary face; his steps quicken as he climbs up the dark stairway to his apartment. He turns the doorknob, ready to blurt out the perfunctory "I'm home" despite the parched feeling lingering at the back of his throat, but the door won't open. That's odd, he thinks. Ran's always left the door unlocked whenever I'm out late. Oh, well, guess I just use the key, then—

Damn,
his keys aren't there in his pants pocket. Suddenly becoming a bit more alert, he checks the other one; still not there. His inner breast pockets? Nope. Must've left it at home, then.

He knocks on the door, calling out his only daughter's name. "Ran! Ran! Open the door; it's me, your father!" He stares at his, thankfully, glow-in-the-dark wristwatch and waits five, ten minutes, and he's still out there on the stairway. She must be sound asleep; after all, it's already five o'clock in the morning. The brat, then? He knocks again, this time calling the freeloader's name. "Hey, Conan! Open the door!" He waits another five to ten minutes, but to no avail. So, he's sound asleep, too, huh? Probably stayed up reading some mystery novel or manga, I bet.

He grabs his smartphone from his pocket and tries calling Ran. Geez, it's hard to believe there'd been a time when she was the one who used to disturb his sleep, either in need of a diaper change or a bottle of milk or comfort from whatever nightmare she had. He then tries calling the brat, tries calling their home number, and even that of the agency below, but to no avail.

For a moment, he considers breaking down the door or that of the agency's, but immediately rejects it: repairs would cost money he doesn't have (or doesn't want to spend on such).

Maybe he should spend the night—yes, he knows it's already technically morning—at one of those—he shudders at the thought—stuffy capsule hotels near the train station. But he's incredibly dizzy and tired and sleepy right now; it had already been a struggle to walk back from the beer garden only a block away. (It's a good thing he's not feeling nauseated, though—this is definitely not a good place to puke!) Besides, they should be waking up in a couple of hours, any—oh, wait, today's a Sunday! Who knows what time they'll wake up?! Great, just great. At this rate, Amuro-kun will see him like this—most definitely not the impression a great detective wants to make upon his young apprentice. He sighs. Then again, Ran has never been the type to sleep in, not even on Sundays. He can only hope.

He sends both Ran and Conan an e-mail saying, "Open the door!" in the hopes at least one of them will see it upon waking up. In resignation, he heaves another sigh and sits, legs hunched up, next to the door, trying to fight off the sleep from his closing eyelids. If only the café downstairs were at least open, he can sit on a decent chair and wait while sipping a nice, hot cup of coffee. . . .

Maybe Ran's punishing me, he thinks. Maybe she's the one who took out his keys. He can't blame her, though; she had always scolded him whenever he came home like this. He knows he's stuck in a self-destructive cycle, that he's better off not drinking. He won't be stuck here outside in this chilly weather, Ran won't scold him for the umpteenth time, and, most of all, he wouldn't have this one hell of a hangover. Maybe Ran will even respect him more, and he'll have a healthier liver to boot! But no he won't stop it; he needs his chance at escape. He needs to feel numb, to drive away the ghosts of his past that mock him as he lies alone in bed almost every single night for the past ten—

—Zzz . . .


Sorry for posting this only now, as this fic was originally written in a rush on the day of the deadline itself, and I didn't quite like how it turned out. (The original version can be found here. *shudders*) I wanted to do some more editing and expanding before posting it outside 31_days, and the reason I took so long was part due to not having a laptop to edit with (my laptop broke down again,
sigh), part due to laziness, and part due to working on various stories which I end up either junking or putting on hiatus anyway because they end up conflicting with recent events and revelations from the manga (and I do like my fics canon compliant). I'll admit laziness is the biggest reason, though. *is shot*

This is actually a side story for a lengthy and long overdue birthday fic I'm writing, although I haven't written how this relates to the main story yet; the prompt inspired the side story first, then I had an idea how to reference this in the main story. Don't expect the fic any time soon, though, as I pretty much lost all of it when my laptop broke down, with the exemption of a few scenes I wrote on my tablet.

Oh, and in case anyone's wondering what Amnesty Day is, it goes like this: On the last day of every month, members are allowed to post stories or art for any of the prompts for that month, regardless of the original deadline. In my case, mine was originally on the sixth of February, but since I did something so stupid as to accidentally post it to the wrong community a minute before midnight, I had to wait until the last day of the month, Amnesty Day, to be able to post it to the community (and yet, I still wasn't able to edit it? Fail, I know).

Anyway, I do hope you've all enjoyed it, and please feel free to tell me how I can improve. Thanks for reading!

Comments

Oh, I don't know how I missed this until you posted the link to the comm--I'm glad you did!

For a moment, he considers breaking down the door or that of the agency's, but immediately rejects it: repairs would cost money he doesn't have (or doesn't want to spend on such).

It's SO in-character that he wouldn't want to break the door down mainly because it would cost too much to fix it. :) And such a sad ending, I just want to cuddle him! Are Ran and Conan out on some case? I hope they come home and get him inside and someplace warm...