Volume Nine: Contact

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Chapter 71: Contact

After the kidnapping incident, Sayu is in a constant state of shock. Soichiro feels terribly guilty.

Near finds out that the president of the U.S. is dead, along with the troops that he deployed to Mello’s hiding place. The SPK deduces that they were definitely killed using the notebook, and their helmets were taken off because they had to see their faces. Near wonders who it was that discovered Mello’s hideout.

Frustrated, Light asks Misa to hand him her notebook, which he will strap on to him. He gives up ownership, once again, of Ryuk’s Death Note, but does not lose his memories since he has Misa’s notebook strapped to him. He instructs Ryuk to follow whoever was the next owner of the Death Note, which he predicted would be Matsuda. Then, Light orders Misa to pretend to be Kira and call his father.

Two days later, Soichiro receives a call from Kira, and the investigators listen in. Kira tells him that he knows the notebook is in enemy hands. He will send to them his Death Note as well as the location of Mello’s hideout. However, he tells them that on November 10th at 11:59 p.m., most of the mafia members from Mello’s group will die. He instructs them to ambush the hideout and get the Death Note back. Kira tells them that he believes that they are enforcers of justice in his world, and no harm will come to them. However, he can’t bear to see the notebook in the Mello’s hands.

Three days later, the investigation team receives the Death Note, and they can all now see Ryuk. Matsuda is overly eager to take advantage of the situation, but the rest of the members are hesitant to trust Kira. He, then, volunteers to make a trade for the shinigami eyes so that they can go and retrieve the Death Note on November 10th from Mello with no mishaps. However, Soichiro steps up and says that he’ll make the trade for the shinigami eyes because he thinks it’s his fault that the notebook was lost in the first place. In addition, if he has to use the Death Note, he is willing to use it and die 13 days later.

Chapter 72: Verification

The investigation team decides to go along with Kira’s plan to retrieve the notebook. Light asks Ryuk if he can convince Jack Neylon’s shinigami to do nothing while they retrieve his Death Note. The investigation team will go in fully equipped with cameras on the shield helmets so that Light can see what exactly what they see.

On November 10th at 11: 47 p.m., the investigation team is in place and ready to ambush Mello’s hideout. Light gives Ryuk orders to find the other shinigami, convince him to stay away and promise him that by doing so, he will get his notebook back. When Ryuk finishes talking to Sidoh, Soichiro gives the go-ahead to trade half of his lifespan for the shinigami eyes. He looks at the photographs of the subjects and can see their names and lifespans. At 11: 59 p.m., the names and lifespans of the subjects disappear. This is the signal to move in and launch the attack.

Chapter 73: Cornered

Most of Mello’s gang is now dead. Mello figures that Kira is involved. He sees that Sidoh is doing nothing so he tries to get out of the room and orders the rest of his gang to bring the Death Note up to the monitor room. Mello’s gang begins to shoot at Soichiro and his team. Light orders them to use tear gas, and when they do, one of the thugs drops the notebook. They tell Light that they have the notebook, but they have no clue where Mello is. While the investigation team is searching, Mello is watching from a monitor and realizes that he’s the only one left. He blows up the two entrances so that they cannot leave. However, he also threatens to blow up the whole building with his switch if they make any sudden movements. Mello orders them to destroy all of the cameras in their helmets, throw all of their weapons over the railings, and one of them hold the notebook while the rest back away. Soichiro holds the notebook while the rest back away. He orders Soichiro to take off his helmet and walk over the door. Mello comes out of the door and demands that Soichiro give him the Death Note and his mask. Soichiro sees his name. It is Mihael Keehl.

Soichiro tells Mello that he now knows his true name, and if he surrenders, he won’t kill him. An aggravated Light wishes that his dad would just kill him. Soichiro tells him to drop the switch, but Mello answers by saying that if he tries to kill him, he’ll just blow himself up and everyone else along with him. Soichiro tells him that he’s not afraid of death and fully prepared, along with his men, to give up their lives. Meanwhile, Light is desperately hoping that his father will kill Mello before it’s too late.

Chapter 74: A Fine Performance

Soichiro continues to threaten Mello when he notices someone behind Soichiro. It’s one of Mello’s gang members who thought he’d survive by pretending to be dead. With his gun, he shoots Soichiro several times. Mello tries to get the notebook from his hands, but they won’t let go of it. When the investigation team hears the gunshots, they decide to break in. They shoot the surviving Mafia member, and they threaten to shoot Mello, who is now wearing a helmet, next. However, Mello presses the switch, and the building blows up.

After the explosion, Light asks Mogi if there is sign of Mello. He fears that he may have gotten away. Also, none of the investigation team, with the sole exception of Soichiro saw Mello’s face. Light fears that Mello may be a danger to him, especially if the SPK and Near get a hold of him first, and Mello tells them about the fake “13 day” rule. Light needs to get his father to write down Mello’s name in the Death Note!

Soichiro was shot in the neck and is bleeding profusely. He is taken to the hospital where they tell him he doesn’t have much longer to live. Light goes to the hospital and sees his father. Soichiro sees that he can see Light’s name and lifespan, which means that he’s not Kira. Of course, that’s because he gave up ownership of the Death Note, but Light has more pressing issues now. As Soichiro starts dying, Light begins to panic and begs his father to write down Mello’s name in the notebook.

However, Soichiro dies before he can do it.

Light and the investigation team give Sidoh back his Death Note, and he leaves for the shinigami realm.

Chapter 75: Acknowledgement

Light is upset at the fact that Mello isn’t dead. He realizes that Near probably doesn’t want Mello killed because he is a source of information for him.

Just then, Near calls L, which is one of many repeated calls. Near feels like he’s into something big because the new L had mentioned that they were still in possession of the notebook. He wonders why Kira is letting the Japanese police continue possessing the Death Note, especially since the Japanese police is supposedly hunting down Kira, and he might not want them knowing certain facts about the notebook. It’s enough for Near to conclude that the new L is Kira. He says he’s “seven percent serious”, but he needs Mello to gather the rest of the evidence.

Then, the vice-president of the U.S. holds a press conference in order to proclaim that the United States has accepted Kira and will do nothing to stand in its way. Needless to say, Light is thrilled.

The SPK wonders what will happen to them now, and Near answers, in disgust, that they will be most likely dissolved.

Back in Light’s apartment, Matsuda is watching and wonders out loud whether Kira is really all that bad. He is fighting against evil and for a peaceful world. Aizawa counters by saying that it’s a peaceful world based on fear. However, Light chimes in saying that Kira will be considered either good or evil based on the results. This means if Kira is captured, then he is evil. If he succeeds, he is good.

Chapter 76: Greetings

While watching different television shows, Light sees first hand how quickly the public’s perception of Kira has changed. Much of the world now does not view Kira as evil. However, he’s determined to catch Mello before Near and the SPK gets a hold of him.

Near is going to dissolve the SPK.  However, he thinks it might be to their advantage because Mello probably wants to get in contact with former SPK members. He’s alone now, and he needs all the information that he can get if he’s to catch Kira. Near is convinced that Mello will try to contact the SPK members, especially Hal Linder who is a woman. Near instructs each one of them to tell Mello of the possibility that the new L might be Kira and that Near is in possession of Mello’s only photograph. Near also orders the members to find new recruits now that the SPK will officially go underground.

Light hears about the SPK disbanding and feels like Near is beginning to make his move. Nevertheless, Light decides to use the Kira-supporting zealots led by Sakura TV’s director Demegawa to spread Kira’s ideals.

Hal Linder is walking home when all of a sudden, Mello, with a scar on his face, pulls out a gun. She tells him to be quiet, leads him to the bathroom and takes a shower. Hal tells Mello that Near predicted that he would make contact with her. Although, he never realized that he already had. She tells Mello that Near thinks the new L is Kira, and Mello is puzzled that such an incompetent idiot like new L is Kira. Mello threatens her with a gun to lead him back to the SPK headquarters.

Hal, with a gun pointed to her by Mello, leads him to where Near is waiting for him.

Chapter 77: Use

The SPK members pull guns on Mello, but Near tells them to put the weapons down since there was no sense in killing him because he will probably be of great use to them..

Mello, however, starts to point his gun toward Near and threatens to shoot him, telling him that he is not “a piece of Near’s puzzle” that he can use to solve the case. But, Hal convinces him to put the gun down because if he shot Near, they would have to shoot him and that would make Kira happy.

Mello has come for the remaining photograph that Near has in his possession. However, Near gives it to him in exchange for some information about the Death Note. Mello tells Near that the Death Note is a shinigami’s notebook, and people who touch it are able to see shinigami. He also tells him that one of the rules written in the notebook is fake, but he isn’t going to tell him which one it is. Now, it’s a question of who will catch Kira first.

Light is determined to kill Near and Mello. As Kira, he calls up the vice-president and demands that he look up any information on agents who “disappeared” right before the creation of the SPK. Light hopes that by finding out that information, he may find some of the living, current SPK members and get closer to Near.

On Sakura TV, director Demegawa has made a new program called “Kira’s Kingdom” for pro-Kira viewers. He tells his audience that he has been chosen by Kira as his spokesman and vows to spread Kira’s philosophy around the world.

Chapter 78: Prediction

Near, through process of elimination based on what he has seen the notebook do, figures out that the fake rule is the “If you don’t write a name in the Death Note after 13 days, you die” rule.

Near calls L and tells him that he’s caught Mello, but he has escaped. Light is furious that Near might have gotten the chance to question Mello first. Still, Light is skeptical that Mello escaped and thinks that Near let him go. However, Near swears that he escaped and begins to ask L about the existence of shinigamis and their ties to the Death Note. Light doesn’t deny it and tells him that he didn’t divulge those details because he thought Near would never believe him. However, then Near asks him if he knows about a fake rule in the Death Note. Light is forced to admit that through process of elimination, it is only logical that the “13 day” rule is the fake one. However, Light suggests that Mello may have been lying and asks Ryuk if all of the rules are true. Ryuk says yes. Excited at the new lead that he has been given, Near asks the new L and the whole Kira investigation team if they had ever seen L’s face. Light panics and hangs up. Near takes it as an affirmative answer. The rest of the investigation team members are angry that Near suspects that one of them is Kira. However, Light decides to call Near back and continue the interrogation. Light admits that they have seen his face. Near then asks them why has Kira, after killing L, not killed the rest of them as well. Telling them that he believes Mello over a shinigami, Near insists that the “13 day” rule is a fake and that Kira is among them, making the shinigami lie. Near even suggests testing the rule by having him write Mello’s name on the Death Note, and if he dies after 13 days, Kira will be happy. Light consults with the investigation team, and they all agree that they do not trust Near enough to go along with such a plan, especially if he thinks that Kira is among them. When Light tells him that they refuse, Near answers that it’s what he expected.

Light now knows that Near suspects him of being Kira and that whole conversation was an act so that he can get the whole investigation team to have doubts about him.

He tells the team that because Near is fishing for information, then Mello can’t be too far behind. He’d probably try to contact Mogi. Just then, Mogi’s phone rings, and Mello is on the other line.

Chapter 79: Lies

Mello asks Mogi to come visit him in New York right now. He tells him to bring no wires or cameras and to stay on the phone at all times and not hang up until he gets on the airplane. Light sees this as a perfect opportunity to catch Mello. Mogi quietly leaves the building with Aizawa and Ide tailing him with cameras.

When Mogi arrives at St. Nick Station, Mello tells him to enter the building right across from him. Mello, who is watching from another building, then calls Near and tells him that a man named Mogi from the Japanese task force is coming. Mello orders Near to interrogate the man, but let him keep his cell phone on so that he may over hear the conversation from where he is.

Near is impressed by Mello’s tactic, but is unsure whether this might be L/Kira who Mello has sent to kill him. Near quickly calls L, and when he hears Light on the other line, he says he dialed the wrong number and hangs up. Light becomes suspicious. Near is now sure that this man is not L and lets him in. He introduces himself to Mogi as Near.

Light is shocked when he hears this. However, he remembers that he had prepared a counter measure that he could use for moments like these. Misa, on Light’s orders, finds the location of Near’s whereabouts and sends a message to the Kira zealots.

When Mogi realizes that it’s Near, he is determined not to talk. Near fears that he has little time because if Kira is L, then he could be killed at any time. He begins by asking Mogi to join them because their goal is the same: to catch Kira. Near asks him if the former L had ever suspected of someone in their team being Kira. Mogi doesn’t answer. Near tells Mello that Mogi may already be controlled by Kira not to talk. Mello responds by saying that they can assume that Kira is in the Japanese task force if Mogi doesn’t talk because he has no motivation to not want to cooperate. Mello then tells Mogi and Near that he already tested the “13 day” rule, and it was indeed fake. Near then asks Mogi if he does not think that the fake “13 day” rule strikes him a bit odd. Mogi still does not respond.

Two days later, Light responds with his secret back-up plan. Pro-Kira zealots led by Demegawa have all started to storm the building where Near is staying. They are all determined to kill Near.

Analysis:

This volume shows just how heartless Light is to his father. He is more upset that his father didn’t kill Mello than the fact that he died. This is another aspect of Light’s perceived superiority. To a god, family connection is of extreme unimportance. Through the loss of his father, Light has lost another person that he could manipulate. This is the reason why he is so hesitant to kill Misa. Light Yagami only needs pawns so that he can build his crime free utopia. He could care less about his family and friends.

The NPA investigation team is alive only to avert suspicion from Light. If he was a rasher person, Light would have killed them all after L’s death. However, he needed them to keep up appearances.

In these chapters and the ones following them, we get a closer look at the followers of Kira. Many of them are people who have been personally touched by Kira’s judgment and are willing to help him out in his goals. These people are seeking solace in a cruel and unpredictable world. However, there are some, like director Demegawa, who enjoy the benefits that come with being one of the leaders of a fanatical movement. He is part of a faction in Kira’s movement that is interested in Kira’s goals. 

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