Chapter 1: Weird shit happens
Everyone at the ADA had certainly seen some weird shit in their life but this was quite possibly the weirdest shit. It was Dazai.
Dazai was definitely under the ‘weird’ category of shit in Yokohama but still, that wasn’t quite the whole thing. No.
His outfit was… weird. His behavior was… weird. His age was… weird.
Somehow, his usual tan leather coat had vanished and been replaced by a long black one. His bandages had spread (spawned?) over his right eye and he was wearing a suit and a small patch on his cheek. Weird.
He wasn’t being an idiot. He was sitting on a table, completely seriously. There were no jokes or laughter, not even a smile or a smirk and he was calm but cold. Weird.
He looked young and when he’d magically appeared in the center of the office with a crash and asked if this was a result of something that had happened 5 years ago, not to mention he considered it as a few hours ago. Amnesia?
Perhaps the weirdest thing about an out-of-character Dazai appearing in the office was that Atsushi was currently on the phone with Dazai… while staring at other Dazai… who wasn’t on the phone.
Ranpo was talking to young Dazai; he no doubt knew everything that was going on but he refused to share it.
“Do you want a lolly?” Ranpo grinned
“I may as well,” Dazai took the lolly and bit down it. Ranpo blinked.
“What are you lot waiting for anyway?” Dazai said.
He pointed his lolly stick accusingly at Kunikida.
“I know you, you’re that irritating prick from the detective agency,” he said.
Kunikida bristled and leaned one hand on the table staring him down.
“What do you mean by that, you bastard, you yourself are-”
The door swung open and normal Dazai walked in. Young Dazai jumped to his feet and stared suspiciously at the ‘other’ guy.
“Atsushi, you were right, this is quite a weird situation,” normal Dazai chuckled.
“Why are you wearing Oda’s coat?” the other one demanded.
“You’re not going to ask who I am?”
“It’s obvious enough who you are,”
“And you’re not going to ask about all of this?”
“It’s obvious enough what all of this is,”
Atsushi was beginning to get a headache.
“It’s not obvious to everyone else, you two might guess it but we’re not all Ranpo, Dazai or…” he gestured vaguely at younger Dazai, brain rushing to try and come up with something to distinguish him from his less-weird counterpart. “Osamu?”
“No.” Both Dazais said at once.
Atsushi turned red and raised his arms.
“Although Atsushi does have a point,” said older Dazai, “We do need something to call you,”
“Also, someone could please explain what’s happened. Are you from another universe or something?” Atsushi added. He was ignored.
“Eyepatch?” Yosano offered.
Younger Dazai reached up to touch the bandages surrounding his eye. “No,”
“Slug or Mackerel,” older Dazai smirked.
Younger Dazai’s head shot up and he glared, looking half embarrassed and half startled.
“Where is he?” the younger one asked. “Is he alive?”
“He’s alive and well, don’t worry. That bastard’s still got fight in him,”
A soft chuckle. “Are we still… you know?”
“Yes, but as you can probably tell, the circumstances are a little different,”
“That’s gotta be hard,”
“It’s worth it,”
“I bet Mori isn’t happy?”
“What are you talking about, it’s the best thing that ever happened to him. He foresaw a repeat of the incident when we were 15,”
Kunikida’s head was completely swimming but one word piqued his suspicion.
“Mori? Ougai Mori? The boss of the mafia?” he demanded. “What’s going on?”
Young Dazai looked at old Dazai, who shrugged.
“I’m Osamu Dazai,” young Dazai said. “I’m 17 years old and I’ve somehow been thrust five years into the future,”
“If you could just have the slightest bit of patience, I’m getting to that,”
Kunikida muttered something unintelligible.
“I’m a top executive in the port mafia and I’m on the path to becoming the next boss after Mori dies,”
Too many people were talking on top of each other. From “I knew it” to “What the fuck? How could you?”, the interloping voices were fired like glass shards towards the two Dazais who had identical smirks.
“You really fucked up my future, you know.” Younger Dazai hissed.
“One of my many talents,”
“Can we just figure out how to get out of this mess?”
“Everyone shut up!” Atsushi yelled.
“Instead of yelling, how about we just give Dazai a chance to explain himself?” he offered.
“Atsushi, you are as ever, an angel but I can’t do that,” older Dazai said. “I can’t risk telling young me about the future,”
“I already have a good idea about the future, I went turncoat,” young Dazai scoffed.
“By the way, your current plan will fail,” Dazai said shortly and turned back to the DA. “I promise you all, I’ll sort this shit out but for now, I’m going to pay an old friend a visit. She can probably reverse this,”
Kunikida opened his mouth to say something but Dazai was out of the door with a “Ciao!” before any words came out, leaving only his younger counterpart behind.
“How could it fail?” young Dazai muttered.
Suddenly, Tanizaki started laughing. Everyone looked at him in confusion.
“Oh my god,” he giggled. “We’re going to have to protect this Dazai or he’ll try to kill his younger self as a new inventive method of suicide,”
There was a slight silence as people tried to hold in their laughter. It wasn’t really the best thing to be laughing at but… it did sound like something Dazai would do and… it was funny.
“That would be quite a good method,” mused younger Dazai slowly.
“Not you as well,” groaned Kunikida. “You mean he’s been at this for five years?”
“Longer,” young Dazai smirked.
Kunikida looked like he was about to bang his head on the desk in exasperation. How was it that Dazai managed to be this irritating, even now?
“Tell me about the past, Dazai,” Atsushi asked. “What was Akutagawa like five years ago?”
Dazai raised an eyebrow. Or maybe both. It was hard to tell with bandages over the side of his face
“Why are you asking about that little runt?”
“He’s as useless as ever,”
“Yes. Why should that come as a surprise to you?”
Kunikida stepped in. “Akutagawa is one of the most feared members of the port mafia, known as their rabid dog. He has one of the most powerful and deadly abilities out
Dazai raised an/his eyebrow(s) again.
“So he improved a bit, well, at least he learnt something. Tell me, is he capable of stopping bullets with his rashoumon?”
That was weird. So was the awkward silence. Well, now what?
“What about your eye?” Yosano said, bringing it up again.
“It’s an old wound,” he shrugged. “It never got treated and now I’m half blind in that eye. I keep it covered so it doesn’t get infected,”
“That is surprisingly self caring for a suicidal maniac,” Kunikida noted.
Dazai shot him a withering glare. “You really think that I want to die of an eye infection? Don’t you know how dreadful that would be?”
'Dazai will take care of himself if not doing so means he won’t die in the way he wants.' Kunikida wrote in his notebook.
“But it healed, right?” Atsushi asked. “I mean, Dazai is fine nowadays,”
Younger Dazai laughed. “He’s half blind in that eye too, can’t you tell? He’s definitely got a blind spot n his right side,”
'Dazai has a blind spot on his right side due to an old untreated eye injury.' Kunikida scribbled. This was going to be so useful.
“What about friends?” Ranpo said. “There can’t be that many decent people in the mafia,”
“Why would my friends have to be decent people?” Dazai replied. “And you’re wrong. He is a very decent person, the like of which you could never even touch,”
“Bit weak for the mafia,” Yosano said, unimpressed.
Dazai’s gaze turned fiery. “Weak is the last word I would use to describe him. He’s stronger than everyone here combined and if you were to anger him… you’d pay ten times the price,”
Was it just Atsushi or had the temperature of the room dropped several degrees?
“Where is he now?” Kunikida asked, pen poised.
“I don’t know. He always dreamed of becoming a writer. Or maybe he’s still in the mafia, or maybe he’s on the run, I’m not exactly a fortune teller,” Dazai said. “All I know is my older self is running around out there having stolen his coat,”
Chapter 2: More weird shit happens
Older Dazai is figuring out how to solve this mess
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
Talking of older Dazai, he was currently inside an underground gambling den, being stared down by two ridiculously large bouncers.
“It’s probably a good idea for you to go into construction,” he told them nonchalantly. “With those physiques. There’s another guy who looks like you, I told him the exact same advice but he didn’t take it. No, he was assaulted by a smaller man instead,”
“Dazai Osamu, what are you doing with my guards?”
Dazai turned around to a door that had been opened behind him by a woman in an elegant gown.
“Charlotte, what a pleasant surprise! If you could please tell these gentlemen to leave me along and consider my business proposal,” he grinned.
“As if you didn’t turn up at my doorstep, expecting to see me,” Charlotte said. “Come in,”
The room behind the door looked like a typical business meeting room, with plain but expensive sofas and a table between them. On the table was a notebook and a pack of playing cards.
“What is it you want?” Charlotte asked, once they’d both sat down. She never wasted any time with pleasantries.
“To put it simply, I need your ability,” Dazai said.
“Doesn’t everyone? Why should I help you?”
“Because you can manipulate an individual’s timeline and I happened to be having a problem with timelines myself,” Dazai said.
“Oh dear god, not this again,”
“My sister,” Charlotte said. “Emily’s ability is a mirror of my own and she enjoys wreaking havoc with it. Let me guess, a younger version of yourself has appeared and is causing chaos?”
“Something like that,” Dazai smirked.
“Your younger self seems to have pissed off younger Emily,” Charlotte said. “I can fix it but it’ll cost you,”
“I can’t give you money,”
“Pity. We’re done here,”
“But I can give you something else,” Dazai added, eyes glinting. “I happen to have in my possession, a document that details every single fraud committed by this casino you run. Tax thefts, rigged cards, mysterious stories of customers and employees vanishing. I also happen to know that your sister, Anne, is in a critical condition at the hospital and your other sister, Emily is due to be serving time in jail. Perhaps even get executed,”
Charlotte stood up, venom flashing in her eyes. Ribbons of blue, red and green materialized and writhed through the air around her, glowing threateningly but Dazai remained seated, an infuriating smirk on his face.
“What have you done, you bastard?” Charlotte growled. “I’ll kill you,”
“As tempting as the offer is,” said Dazai, “You can’t kill me. If you do that, then my younger self will release the documents proving that your casino is a fraud. What do you think will happen to your sister’s healthcare money, or your other sister’s bail money then? Not to mention, your wealthy lifestyle and reputation will be completely ruined. You may even have to live on the streets,”
“You’re a manipulative piece of shit, you know that, Dazai,” Charlotte hissed.
“I have been told,”
Charlotte sighed and closed her eyes. The colorful ribbons faded from the air around her and when she opened her eyes again, they had a defeated air.
“Alright,” she sighed. “Take me to him,”
‘He’ was not having fun in the detective agency. Younger Dazai had been put under too much scrutiny from the other members, the were beginning to drive him insane. How did his older self cope with them?
“But what if it was, say Gin, that black lizard assassin guy!” Tanizaki said. “He’d probably destroy Akutagawa,”
“Not even Higuchi and Gin could destroy Akutagawa and there’s no probably about it,” Yosano countered.
Dazai stared blankly out of the window, wondering how high it was, and whether the fall would be fatal. He’d been roped into a conversation about which mafia member would win in a fight and he was too astounded at how stupid the agency was.
“The fall isn’t fatal, I’m afraid,” said a familiar voice and younger Dazai turned around to see his older counterpart standing in the doorway with an elegant looking lady looking extremely pissed off behind him.
“You took your time, Dazai,” Kunikida sighed.
“Who’re you?” asked Atsushi.
“This is Charlotte Bronte,” Dazai said. “She’s agreed to help us,”
“Agreed is a strong word,” Charlotte said, a less then impressed expression on her face. “Somehow you look even worse when you’re 17 than you do right now,”
Tanizaki (unsuccessfully) held in a giggle.
“Can you fix this though?” Ranpo said, removing a lolly from his mouth.
“Depends how you define ‘fix’” Charlotte said, walking forwards into the room to stare down at younger Dazai. “I can send him back to where he came from but I can’t keep the timelines the same,”
“Explain,” said Kunikida.
“Well, this won’t erase younger Dazai’s memories,” Charlotte said. “Anything he does in the past differently now that he knows all this will impact the future,”
“I could destroy the world,” younger Dazai said.
“Per…haps,” said Charlotte.
“I mean, it can’t impact the future too drastically, can it?” Kunikida said. “We haven’t told him anything and he doesn’t know anything except that he stole his friend’s coat and joined the ADA,”
The two Dazais exchanged a glance that Atsushi didn’t miss but he dismissed it as just a random thing between two of the same people.
“Sounds good to me,” younger Dazai said. “Are you sure I won’t nullify the ability?”
“I don’t need direct contact,” Charlotte said. “And Emily’s ability obviously worked on you so mine should as well,”
Young Dazai smirked and stepped towards Charlotte. The same glowing ribbons of blue red and green appeared and began twisting around young Dazai. His hair fluttered in the wind being caused and he made a small noise of pain.
“Careful, it hurts,” Charlotte smirked and with a flash, young Dazai was gone.
Atsushi Nakajima was sitting at his desk. He turned to the desk next to him and was hit with the image of a man with fluffy dark hair and bandages wrapped around his arms lounging on that chair grinning and irritating Kunikida. He frowned and shook his head, why would he think of that?
Why would he look at the empty desk next to him and think of the most feared man in Yokohama, the boss of the port mafia, Dazai Osamu?
Remember Dazai telling his younger self that the ‘plan wouldn’t work?’. His plan was to have Mori die in an accident but after knowing that it wouldn’t work, he changed it slightly and it was successful. Mori was killed, Oda never died and Dazai became the next boss.
As for Atsushi, when Dazai became the boss, it was Akutagawa who left the mafia and joined the ADA. He was the one who met Atsushi on the river bank, just in slightly different circumstances. Akutagawa was killed in a battle not long after though because he found himself facing Higuchi and Gin and unlike Yosano predicted, he couldn’t ‘destroy them’. He was capable of it but they were his sister and former subordinate and he couldn’t bring himself to do it. They, on the other hand, had been badly hurt by his betrayal and had no problem with finishing him off.
I may write a new story that covers the events of the altered timeline.... hmmm