He was so close to catching her! Fifteen-year-old self-proclaimed detective, Jin Tohari groaned in frustration, as he chased the black silhouette in front of him. That mysterious Black Rose drove him mad! Every time there was a crime, she was there beating the police to the scene and saving the day. Jin was amazed, not to mention a little suspicious, of the young crime fighter who always seemed to know where and when something was going to happen. She called herself Black Rose and did things no normal person could do. According to his sources she had almost magical abilities, which was utter nonsense to Jin. Magic was fairytale, children's stories, nothing more and none of that sort of thing was real. The self-proclaimed detective did not believe in magic…at first. But he started having second thoughts when it came to Black Rose.

Something flew past Jin's head, slicing his cheek so it bled. Jin stumbled to a stop and looked behind him. A single black rose stuck in the pavement as if it were planted there from the very beginning. Jin was too deep into the chase to be surprised with this toy of hers. He whipped around glaring. Who really could make attacking flowers out of thin air and call themselves normal?

Jin charged forward; ready to get some answers out of the mysterious girl.

Jin watched Black Rose sprint forward and leap onto the roof of a neighboring building. The tail of her black coat flapped in the air and her boots made a clicking noise as she landed gracefully. Jin grunted and quickly followed after her. He had to find out who she was!

Jin made a running start and jumped over the space between buildings. He landed on the roof and rolled to cushion his fall. Jin recovered quickly and his eyes began searching for Black Rose. As soon as he saw her, a tornado of midnight rose petals attacked him. He made a shield with his arms to cover his face and winced when one of the petals cut his skin. Within seconds, the force of the petals knocked Jin off his feet and he landed on his back. His eyes widened when he heard a giggle. Jin shot up and looked around wildly for the figure.

"What was that for?" Jin cried when he spotted Black Rose. The self-proclaimed detective stumbled onto his feet, feeling more battered than usual. Black Rose was in a bad mood today.

Black Rose smiled.

"You won't give up, will you?"

"Why would I?" Jin questioned, stepping closer. "I saw you running away from the bank robbery two days ago! Do you have something to hide?"

If Jin noticed correctly, Black Rose's composure changed a little. He kept walking forward.

"What about it?" she asked. "You cannot blame me for that!"

"Yes I can! The cops don't know where the money is and I saw you! Where's the money?"

Jin's accusations were never going to stop. Not until she admitted the obvious.

Black Rose scowled.

"Your eyes mean nothing at all to them," she said. "So why are you even bothering?"

Jin folded his arms over his chest and huffed.

"My eyes are helping them," he snapped, but a smirk slowly spread across his lips. His feet kept moving forward. Black Rose was letting him get close. "But you seem to have many yourself. I wonder if they're all that pretty shade of brown."

"You are perceptive, but flattery clearly will not work on me."

This was getting him nowhere and it became annoying after weeks of the same thing. Black Rose was a thief, he was a detective, and he was going to solve her case if it was the last thing he managed to do before she drove him insane.

"Let's cut the crap. Tell me who you are, and where you took the money!" Jin shouted.

Black Rose let out a short laugh and wagged a finger at Jin.

"Why do you not have your uncle look for it in the old hideout? I am sure they left it there."

Jin took his last step forward so that he was a few feet away from Black Rose, before the blizzard of roses petals flurried into him again. This was getting out of hand! The razor sharp petals cut his skin more and Jin winced in pain. Jin rolled out of the way an charged forward, watching as Black Rose jumped to the edge of the roof. Her back was to the horizon, setting her black clad figure aglow with golden-orange sunlight. Jin bit back the urge to remain breathless. A stray petal cut the skin between his middle and pointer finger, bringing him back to reality. Jin winced.

"Why should I believe you?" Jin shouted, cradling his bleeding hand. "I know you are the thief!"

"Then, I must admit, you do not know much," Black Rose said, sigh in a disappointed sort of way. "Do me a favor and stop following me around. Stupid people like you are hardly any fun."

"When I unmask you, then we'll see who will have all the fun," Jin growled, furious at the insults.

Black Rose laughed again and the rose petals started again. Jin pushed forward, ignoring the pain, until he was right in front of her. The surprise on her face could not be hidden by her black mask. Jin lifted his hand and held her cheek in his palm. His heart was pounding in wild exhilaration and excitement. Black Rose was right in his grasp! Something inside of Jin quivered when he noticed how soft and warm she was.

"Stay a while," Jin said, voice warm and smooth. "Unless you have something to hide?"

"So sorry, but I have… other engagements," Black Rose said, with a smirk on her face. Without warning, she closed her eyes and fell over the edge of the roof. Jin's eyes widened as he fell with her. Fear entered his system as the cool air whipped his face. Black Rose laughed and Jin saw her disappear into the darkness. Jin yelled in fright as he neared the ground. Suddenly, a gust of air shot Jin back up the building and he roughly landed back on the roof. His whole body was trembling and his breath came out in loud pants.

"Leave me alone," Black Rose's voice echoed through the air.

"Black Rose!" he angrily shouted into the air. Nothing replied back. Jin yelled in frustration before he pounded his fist against the roof. She was just playing with him! Jin slammed his fist against the roof again and again until his hand became sore. She was playing him like some sort of game! He could not believe it. After weeks of chasing her, she finally showed her true colors. Jin growled angrily before a voice in the back of his mind told him to get his anger under control. Jin steadied his breathing and calmed his racing heart.

"She's insane…" he muttered. His was surprised his heart did not give out because of sheer fright this evening. But something about the sensations she gave him caused him to want more. It was like the excitement from it all begged his mind and body for more. After the fright left the desire to finally catch her, then rip her mask off her. It was if she opened up a new Jin- a Jin he was sure he knew nothing of. But this excited him even more. Jin wondered if he caused the same thing inside of Black Rose.

"One day," Jin vowed, "one day Black Rose I'll find out who you are and you'll tell me everything."

Jin scanned the darkening skyline for a few more seconds before turning around. A tall wall surrounded all of Hainai District. It stretched and passed out of Jin's sight. The wall was a constant reminder that there were things outside of Hainai District that the people wanted to keep a secret. Beyond the wall, it was barren and nothing good came out of going out of Hainai. Jin was told never to go out of the city. But unlike everyone else in Hainai District, Jin wanted to know what was out there. He wanted to know everything his parents did about the outside world. Why did everyone in Hainai think that the outside world was a dangerous place? Could it be worse than the vilest places in Hainai? Jin stared at the wall for a few more seconds, deep in thought.

Jin looked towards the doorway to the stairs, when he heard a banging noise from within. The door slammed open and four people came running out with guns raised. When they noticed no one was on the roof except Jin, they lowered their weapons and let someone through.

Oh no. Jin thought.

Tekeda Tohari was a man of average height and weight and was middle aged. He had brown eyes and black hair that he slicked back. His beard was neatly trimmed and that added to his 'second look' handsomeness. He wore a tan trench coat and a blue scarf, but his customary tan hat was not placed on his head. The commissioner had a stern look upon his face as he noticed Jin.

"Where'd she go?" Tekeda Tohari asked. "Did that girl escape again?"

Jin nodded, looking in the direction where Black Rose pulled him off the roof. A couple of men walked over to where Jin pointed.

"Yeah," he muttered.

"Blast it! How in the world does she manage to get to things we don't?" Tekeda Tohari questioned angrily. "Did she say anything to you? What about the stolen money? Did she have it?"

Jin looked back at his uncle nodding.

"She said that the money was in the old hideout the thieves used… that was it," he replied.

"We checked that place already," Tekeda Tohari muttered. He raised his hand to his hair and ruffled it slightly. Jin looked at his uncle while he thought. His uncle was the top of the police force in Hainai District. Yet recently, Tekeda Tohari was distressed because of Jin and his need to find out exactly who the mysterious Black Rose girl was.

Black Rose was different from the normal criminals of Hainai District and Tekeda Tohari had a feeling she was not from Hainai at all. If that were true, that would mean she was potentially dangerous. All outer worlders were dangerous. All outer worlders were dangerous. That was the first and only rule regarding the outside world and Tekeda did not like them in the least. He turned to his men.

"Go search the Luxefore lot! Don't leave a thing unturned!" he barked. The Hainai District Police turned heel and ran back down the stairs. Tekeda Tohari looked behind his shoulder at his nephew.

"Go straight home Jin and clean yourself up. You look a mess," he said gruffly, eyeing his nephew up and down. "And be careful."

Jin nodded, not in the mood to dispute. He lost Black Rose again and she was even within arms length this time! Jin fumed as he walked down the staircase of the building and on to the streets of Hainai District's Hainai City. It was the largest place in Hainai that was populated. The city had tall buildings blocking the sky, people walking around chatting mindlessly, nightlights on fancy buildings flashing- everything the people loved. Jin thought he was supposed to be in the middle of it all, enjoying the nightlife while he was still young, but every time he took it into consideration he found that he liked open spaces more. He loved chasing Black Rose over the tall buildings because the rooftops opened up to the night sky. Jin was allowed to be exhilarated and free on the rooftops but as soon as he was brought back by reality, he found himself on the streets of Hainai, closed in and isolated.

Not many people were out on the streets and it was almost eerily silent. Perhaps it's because of the police raid, Jin thought as he made his way to the train station. Here he was, a fifteen-year-old boy walking down the city streets alone. Hainai was strange. It was safe, yet unsafe all at once. Jin knew the streets no to go on, knew what time he was the safest in the city, and when the high of criminal activity was. He was grateful for the people who robbed, kidnapped and even those who occasional impersonated outer worlders. It gave him something to do. It gave him a reason to chase Black Rose.

"How many times have I asked you not to go looking after Black Rose?" Tekeda asked fuming. His nephew ignored him, while he looked at old paper clippings and black and white photos.

"Are you listening to me?" Tohari asked.

Jin flipped a photograph over and scribbled something on the back of it.

"You're the one who told me not to give up the chase," Jin countered.

Tekeda made a move to push all the papers off his nephew's bed, but Jin slapped his hand on his belongings and glared at his uncle.

"I'm not giving this up!"

Tekeda sighed.

"This is just some silly game right now Jin," he said. "You'll forget about it once you stop."

Jin's face did not change and neither did his resolve.

"You don't understand and I don't expect you to! She saved Aya! But there is so much more to her than that! I need to know why she does what she does!" Jin cried angrily. "You do what you need to do and I'll do what I need to!"

"I don't want you getting hurt! How am I supposed to concentrate on my duties, if I'm worried about your welfare?" Tekeda cried angrily.

Jin let out a frustrated groan and turned his head to the side. He ran his fingers through his mess of spiky raven hair letting the disappointment of the night's chase free. He looked at his uncle again with a calmer expression and nodded.

"If I get hurt, it will be my fault," Jin said, finally getting is voice under control. "Let me be the one to deal with the consequences."

There was a tense minute of silence and Jin thought that his uncle was going to argue with him again, but Tekeda just made a gruff noise and turned around.

"I'll continue this in the morning," he said before walking through the door. Jin nodded and continued his work. He knew his uncle would not continue the conversation until another time. Jin scrutinized the belongings on his bed. The notebook at his side was filled with notes about Black Rose and all the things she did and could possibly do. The images on his bed were a mixture of quick shots of Black Rose in action (none of them were clear), and drawings of Black Rose made by one of Jin's friends. The paper clippings were from the newspaper with articles about Black Rose.

Jin flipped some articles sighing angrily.

"How am I supposed to find you if you keep-"

Jin's pocket vibrated and he jumped slightly. He dug into his pocket and pulled out a small box. Jin opened the small box lid and a little glowing globe popped up.

"It's Jin," Jin answered. "Erick! What's up?"

Jin listened to his friend's voice for a moment.

"Another one?" Jin asked. "You need to make another sketch? What'd she look like? Hm…"

Jin thought for a moment.

"She had high boots on today, and this black coat, yeah, like a trench, yeah, with a tail. No, it was black on the inside too. No, today her hair was black and long- wavy too. Uh-huh. Her eyes were- yeah! How'd you know? She always wears that black mask… Did you find something out?"

Jin listened in silence for a few more seconds.

"Whaddya mean, you'll tell me tomorrow?" he cried. "What good are you, man? Geez."

Jin was silent for a few more seconds.

"Of course, I still think she's the Chang girl!"

Jin was silent.

"Why wouldn't I believe you? Of course you're right about the similarities! She hides a lot too and every time I mention Black Rose around her, sheI know! She clams right up! She's making me pry! What did you say you…! I am not obsessed!"

Jin had a frown on his face.

"I've told you before I don't really know why I… I just do! I have a feeling that's all…" Jin listened for a little while. "You laugh, that's why I don't explain it to you, stupid… It's called a feeling."

Jin made a very unpleasant face and listened to his friend's voice.

"Yeah, I'll see you tomorrow," he finally said. "Bye."

Jin closed the box lid and the glowing sphere disappeared. He flopped onto his bed exhausted. Erick Bastion was his best friend who was interested in trying to find out who Black Rose really was. He was the artist that did all the drawings of Black Rose. He helped paint a picture of Black Rose's secret identity. Even though they were friends, Erick had a way of making Jin embarrassed. He also found a way to make Jin realize how much work he needed to get finished.

"Jin Tohari, it looks like you have a long way to go," Jin sighed. He packed all his work up and readied himself for bed. He would challenge Chang the next day and see if she would give in. Jin turned off his light and made himself comfortable.

I am not obsessed… He thought in a slightly bitter tone as he drifted off to sleep. For weeks, the sheer desire to just catch her lingered in his body. It flowed to his fingertips every night she appeared. And tonight he had the pleasure of touching her after so long. Jin sighed.

He was not obsessed, it was so much more than that…whatever that was.