Hello! So this is a plot bunny that just wouldn't leave me. I've always wanted to write something about Corpse Party, but the right idea wouldn't come to me -that is, until now.
SHIPS: [Anzu/Yugi], [Shizuka/Honda], possible [Rebecca/Mokuba] (though I'm no good at romance so if you're here for the romantic aspect of this you may be sorely disappointed)
WARNING:This story will contain body horror, gore, character death and just all around unpleasantness, so if that isn't your cup of tea, please don't proceed. I mean, honestly, it's a Corpse Party crossover; if you weren't expecting this coming into the fanfic, well I don't know what to say.
I'll be using Japanese names in this fanfic, but for Jounouchi, I hope you dont mind me using "Joey"
This story also takes place POST-SERIES, in case you didn't read the summary -meaning that there will be no Yami Yugi or Yami Bakura. Sorry about that.
The first chapter's a bit fluffy, truth be told, but it does get darker later on...
Chapter One: Abyss
And when you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.
It was a dreary smog that lingered in the air above Domino City, like a torrent of bittersweet emotion, beautiful yet vague and unsettling in its presence. A solitary breeze danced and swirled around the town square, passing by the head of the tycoon prodigy, Seto Kaiba, his lips moving, looping on an electronic billboard just large enough to house his self-importance. His voice spoke over the head of Domino City idles about whatever was important to Kaiba at the given time, but it was nothing but an ambient buzz in the ears of a young blonde, crossing the square to a car park nearby.
The flickering lamps painted a lonely scene of the small woman all alone in the large lot. The buildings around her cast large shadows over the cars in great contrast to the bright and cheerful square just beside the lot. It was almost eerily quiet, and had the young woman been easily scared, she would have shifted her pace from a brisk walk to a frantic jog.
A gold and violet striped gift bag swung at her side jovially as she approached a dark convertible forced smack in the middle of two expensive looking SUV's. Placing the gift bag in the passenger seat, she pulled out her phone, which had been silently vibrating in her purse for quite some time. She flipped it open and spat into the speaker, "For the last time, Joey, I'm not picking you up! So take a cab and leave me alone!"
The blonde woman's face twitched. The voice that had come out of the aged flip phone was not as nagging nor as gruff as she had anticipated; it was rather soft and timid, and also a pleasant surprise, so with trepidation and a bit of mortification, she took a glance at the caller ID. It was Jounouchi -or at least his phone.
After a moment's recollection, she spoke again, "Shizuka, honey, is that you?"
There was a delicate inhalation on the other end of the phone and a cheerful yet slightly hesitant "Yes."
"How are you doing? It's been a while since I heard your adorable voice!" Mai's voice took a complete 180 turn, changing from her stern Jounouchi tone to her everyone else tone. Mai was especially fond of Shizuka Kawai, who she likened to her own baby sister.
The teenager giggled and replied, "I've been great. I aced my finals this year so mom let me come to Domino City."
Mai smiled gently. "Atta girl! I knew you'd do well. So you're staying with your brother now?"
"Yeah! Katsuya just picked me up from the airport. I wanna surprise Anzu today!"
"I'm sure she'll love it!"
"But... " But? "I'll need a ride to get there," she added.
Mai mused for a moment, biting her lip. She felt something moist on the bridge of her nose and put two slender fingers to the top of her hair. With a sigh she realized it was just about to start raining and she was standing alone in a parking lot wearing a tank top and a mini-skirt.
The wind rustled the woman's golden curls and roused goosebumps on her arms, and with it came the sound of thunder, though preoccupied with her phone call, she hadn't quite caught the lightning that preceded it. She really did have to get out of that rain…
It was a quarter to six, yet the view from Anzu's living room window looked like a giant monster had swallowed the world whole and left in its place a hypnotic black abyss, one that threatened to engulf her house. After travelling with the Pharaoh and helping him save the world from eternal darkness and misery, she couldn't quite say that she was afraid of the dark. Darkness was feeble and darkness was fragile, and Anzu had the power of light in her heart and the hearts of her friends.
However, as she stared on into the void through the glass, she saw black, and she saw the tightness in her brow and the frown on her face reflected before her. She drew the curtain over the window and headed towards her sofa, curling up into a ball and keeping her eyes fixed on her television screen.
The television was turned off, she could swear it was, but somewhere deep inside, where her human eyes could only just see, two small eyes stared back at her, and she couldn't bring herself to look away.
Yugi plopped down on the couch beside her. He had been helping Anzu prepare her farewell party and had been at her house from early that morning, though their friends would probably have a thing or two to say about what else those two could have been doing all alone in a house for eight hours, and their claims probably wouldn't have been too far from the truth.
They had begun dating just over a year ago, after they all bid the Pharaoh farewell, and nobody who knew them could say the didn't see this development coming. Thankfully for Anzu, the past couple of years had seen a growth spurt in Yugi, so she didn't feel so tall when she was around him, not that she had minded the height difference before. His current height was just a bit more comfortable for her; that was all.
Anzu grinned slightly and rested her head on her boyfriend's shoulder, her eyes not breaking contact with the crimson slits she saw across the room in her television screen.
"You okay?" Yugi asked, his hand moving gently to her face to push a strand of her chestnut hair out of her face. He felt like something was wrong with Anzu, but he didn't question it; after all, she was moving to America in a week, so a little melancholy wasn't too strange an emotion to have.
Just a year ago, they had all thought that they would be together forever, always by each others' sides, and when Yugi looked down at his hand, he could still see the markings Anzu had drawn so long ago, a mark of their everlasting friendship. Now, in their senior year, he realized that it was inevitable that they would separate and follow their own paths. How foolish of him to think otherwise, to think that they could carry on in life together when there were so many opportunities ripe for the taking. How selfish of him to think that, no matter what, wherever life took him, his friends would be right by his side. They all had dreams and ambitions, and he knew that holding them back would be like stabbing years of friendship in the back.
The last thing he expected, however, was for Anzu to be the first to leave him -his beautiful, radiant beacon of light, the warmth in his heart, his pillar of strength. Out of all the friendships he had formed, hers was the one that had lasted the longest, having been friends from childhood, before he knew what love was, before he knew the ecstasy of her name on his tongue and her delicate hands on his skin. She had stood by him the longest, supported him with everything she had, never doubting him, never faltering -and now it was his turn to return the favor by offering his support in this huge step she was taking.
The young girl let out a long sigh as she moved away from Yugi and reached out to the coffee table, retrieving a piece of paper cut into the shape of a person. She held it to her chest as she leaned back into the sofa again and into Yugi's arms. It was her last line of defense, her insurance that no matter how far away she was from Domino City, she would stay in her friends' hearts forever.
"I'm not okay, Yugi," she murmured, nuzzling her face into his shoulder. "I don't think…"
"Everything will be okay." The reply was short and so very contrived. He couldn't believe he was saying this. He couldn't believe he had so many things to say to her, to let her know, and all he could say was that. "God, I'll miss you so much…" he whispered, his lips making their way to the top of her head, trembling.
The reverie was broken by the sound of the doorbell. It was time for the festivities to start, but neither of them felt like celebrating after all…
"You're early, Mokuba."
The car door opened with a soft click, but that click was all it took to startle the young Kaiba out of his thoughts. It wasn't like they were important thoughts, really… With the success of Kaiba Land and the Kaiba brothers' faces on the front of every business magazine in print at the moment, there was little to be worried about. Each of the boys was busy with something and that's how it has been since the grand opening of the amusement park. Of course, the younger boy couldn't rely on his brother for everything; so just as Seto slaved day and night to become the man he was, it was Mokuba's turn. But this day was different -he was taking a break to say goodbye to a dear friend.
The voice that startled him belonged to an associate of his, namely, Rebecca Hopkins, a 15 year old girl who looked out of place in the Japanese backdrop, her all-American blonde hair soaked to the roots and her sapphire eyes glistening below dark lashes. She shuffled into the limousine, taking a seat opposite of the billionaire.
The raven haired teen grinned at the girl and leaned back against his seat nonchalantly. "Looks you were early, too," he replied, gesturing to her raccoon eyes and devastated mascara. "Need a tissue?"
"Nah, I've got my own…" she said, rummaging in her oversized purse and extracting a wad of hastily folded tissues.
"Well, you didn't have to walk all the way here from your hotel. I could have had my driver pick you up from there!"
"No, it's fine. I was getting Anzu something from a cute antique place around the corner from here." She patted her purse, which, fortunately for her and all the things stuffed inside of it, was made from plastic (designer plastic, mind you!). "Just didn't expect it to rain so hard…" She unfolded one tissue and slowly, methodically massaged under her eyes.
"Well, that's Domino City for ya!" Mokuba exclaimed with a chuckle.
Rebecca smirked, her eyes still staring at the ceiling of the limo as she wiped off her eyeliner. "They say you and your brother control the weather. Is that true?"
The boy let out a loud laugh and replied with a wide smile. "Maybe we do."
The car was silent for a moment, as the blonde held up a mirror and traced around her eyes with a black pen, applying again what the downpour had mercilessly undone. Her bubblegum lips parted slightly and her breathing shallow, as her friend watched on in fascination. Her eyes caught his entirely unsubtle stare, a blur beneath the frame of the canvas and her bubblegum lips move. "What?" she asks.
"How can you do that?" the boy voices in awe, as his companion's fingers moved the pen back and forth slowly and rhythmically.
"Draw eyeliner like that without messing up."
Without missing a beat, she said, "I sacrificed my soul to the devil in exchange for perfection"
Mokuba pursed his lips, holding in a laugh. "No, really."
"Yes, really. I mean how else do you think I became the youngest Duel Monsters prodigy and graduated from college before I even grew pair of boobs." The girl stuck her tongue out at the boy whose eyes were now anxiously trying not to glance at her bosom. Satisfied with her work, she closed the pen and put it back in her makeup bag, pulling out a mascara brush instead.
Deciding to let it go, Mokuba just smiled kindly at her. "Y'know, you don't need to do all this to look good. I think you look great already!"
She put down her brush for a moment to roll her eyes at the billionaire. "You're so naïve, Mokuba. I'm not trying to look great. I'm trying to look flawless, and it's not like I'm doing it for you anyway!"
"Well, whoever you're doing it for would probably be satisfied even if you went without makeup!" he claimed defensively, thinking bitterly of Yugi, who his friend had had a crush on for quite a while now, not that she would openly admit it now that the apple of her eye was very happily dating someone else.
Rebecca sighed and muttered. "I'm doing it for myself, and my standards are ridiculously high." She lifted her brush and gave her lashes a couple of quick strokes before sheathing it and placing it back in her bag.
Observing the glum expression on Mokuba's face, she let out an airy giggle. "Aww, Mokie. Don't get too upset. Thank you, for the compliment. I really do appreciate it." And with that, her friend's expression lightened quite a bit and a bashful redness made its way to his cheeks.
The young Kaiba was about to open his mouth in a reply when he felt the limo stop, followed by the sound of the dividing window unlatching and the driver's face appearing in its stead.
"Mr. Kaiba, we have arrived."
Mokuba looked over at Rebecca and said, "Well, this is it."
"Yes. Let's get going, Mr. Kaiba," she teased.
As the door was opened by the limousine driver, Mokuba replied, "Well, as long as you lead the way, because I've never actually been to Anzu's place."
"Sure," she reassured him, stepping under the man's umbrella and lending a hand to the boy, helping him out of the vehicle.
"Anzu!" The collective shout nearly deafened the poor girl, and the force with which she was attacked consequently nearly immobilized her, and her only crime was opening the door. Yugi smiled warmly at the people who were now piled on top of his girlfriend. The first to arrive to the party were Shizuka, Mai, and Jounouchi, with abundant grins, hugs, kisses and tears.
"You guys are early as always," he remarked, pulling Jou in for a hug. "I hope you didn't get soaked in that rain."
"Yeah," Anzu added as she pulled away from a tearful Shizuka. "I'm so sorry. If I had known the weather would be like this, I would have made my party another day."
Mai grinned widely and pinched her worried friend's cheeks with her two hands. "Aww, Sweets! Don't worry about it! Besides, it was just a little drizzle. Nothing to worry your cute little head about!"
As if to deny and defy, a sharp flash lit up the room, followed shortly by the low rumble of thunder and the formation of a slight crease between Anzu's eyebrows. "I hope everyone else makes it here okay…" she muttered.
As the words left her mouth, two figures appeared in the doorway behind her guests, where she had left the front door open. A damp Rebecca and a considerably drier Mokuba pushed through the crowd and presented themselves before the hostess.
"Hey, Anzu!" and "Can I use your bathroom!" were yelped simultaneously.
Yugi, feeling a bit left out of the greetings, but still content, let out a chuckle and grabbed the American girl by the shoulder gently, leading her towards the bathroom, leaving Anzu to fend for herself amongst their sorrowful friends and their bittersweet tears. The younger girl smiled graciously as she and her giant purse entered the washroom, leaving Yugi behind to wander absent-mindedly back to the living room.
The front door was now securely shut and Anzu was sitting on the couch, where she had been seated previously, surrounded by her friends. Her face was kind and smiling, but her eyes were hollow, staring squarely at the television screen, holding her thin, white doll against her heart, letting it feel her uneven heartbeat. Something was amiss, and she couldn't quite place her finger on it.
"So, I'll bet you were pretty surprised when my baby sis showed up on your doorstep! Eh? Eh?" Joey declared proudly, unconsciously placing his younger sister in a one-armed death grip. "She was so excited, sayin' 'Joey! Joey! Take me to see Anzu before she leaves!'" he said in a falsetto, letting go of Shizuka to make a pleading gesture with his hands. "'Course, me bein' the coolest brother in the world, I decided to grant her fragile little heart her wish."
"Wow, Joey, you're so amazing," Mai praised sarcastically. "Just don't forget who drove your ass here."
"Hey! Hey!" he snapped, shaking his fist. "I coulda come here on my own, y'know!"
"Without a license? I doubt it!" she told him, closing her eyes and shrugging.
"Joey, you don't have a license?" Mokuba piped up curiously.
The older boy groaned and sunk his head low. "Ya see what ya did, Mai. Now this kid ain't takin' me seriously anymore!" He then flashed a great, wide grin at the boy. "Y'see, Mokuba, I coulda gotten my license a long time ago, but I just haven't had the time!"
"More like no examiner in his right mind would give you a license!" Mai interjected, letting out a haughty laugh, much to the blonde boy's frustration.
"Say whatever you want, but I -"
However, he was forced to cut his statement short when his sister's voice cut through gently. "Hey, Anzu… You've been awfully quiet. Are you okay?" The younger Jounouchi sibling was seated right beside the brunette and placed a comforting hand on her forearm as she spoke.
"Yeah, Shizuka, I'm fine. I'm just kinda worried about Honda and Bakura… That storm is getting pretty bad…" she uttered softly, leaning into the younger girl slightly and offering her a small tilt in the corners of her lips, the beginnings of a smile.
Mokuba spoke this time, from his position on the loveseat to the right. "It's strange… The weather forecast predicted cloudy weather, but that's about it. Forecasts can be wrong though…"
"It's raining pretty early in the year though." Yugi made his presence known and sat beside Mai on the already cramped sofa; it was the closest he could get to Anzu. "Even for Domino City."
Everyone nodded and Joey spoke up. "Well, don't worry too much about them, Anzu. Those guys are pretty tough. They can take care of themselves. A little rain won't scare 'em!"
As he said this, Rebecca emerged from the bathroom, and sprinted over to them, holding out a small royal blue gift-wrapped box. "W-What's this?" the brunette asked, her gaze briefly leaving the abyss of the television screen to look at her young friend. "You didn't have to -"
"Are you kidding? How else will you remember me?" the younger girl asked, shoving the box into the dancer's lap. "It's from Otogi too since he's out of the country right now."
"Hey, Becky!" Joey called out, always switching the attention to himself. "You ain't the only one that got her something! Me and Shizuka got her something too!" Extracting a small green box from his sister's purse, in painful disregard to her privacy.
"Hey, me too!" Mokuba exclaimed, producing his own box. "It's from me and Seto, even though he couldn't be here today…"
"We all got you gifts, Sweetie," Mai said, gesturing to the gift bag, which once dangled on her wrist, now resting on the coffee table in front of them.
Several consecutive rings of the doorbell and a series of loud knocks interrupted the group and Yugi stood up and rushed to get the door. When he came back, it was with two familiar beaming faces.
"Hey, guys! I hope you didn't start the party without us!"
Many voices gasped in happiness and surprise, and a cacophony of "Ryou" and "Honda" rang out through the small living area. The final members of their gathering had finally arrived safely and everything was going without a hitch, so all cause for worry was gone. Anzu could breathe easily now that this small weight on her heart had been lifted. All nine were present and accounted for and she could finally do what she wanted to do with them.
She cleared her throat and stood up, breaking eye contact with the crimson glare that had had her ensnared the whole night."Um, guys… Can I say something?" she said weakly.
"Of course, Anzu. Speak your mind," Yugi replied, calmly rubbing her shoulder with one of his hands.
She smiled and let out a deep breath. "Well, as you know, I'm… I'm going to America soon, and we might not see each other for a long time. And all of us… We've been through so much together. We've been at each other's sides, supporting each other, helping each other, for years, through thick and thin, and you guys don't know how happy each and every one of you makes me. Your happiness and friendship got me through so much these past years and I don't know what I'd do without you… or what I'm going to do without you… when I leave…" She felt her breath get caught in her throat and shuddered slightly, placing one of her hands to her throat. "I don't know what I'm going to do, guys…" Her voice broke going through that last sentence, but she persevered and continued speaking, trying to swallow back her weakness and speak with clarity. "I just wanted to try something… something to keep us together forever, so that, even when I'm thousands of kilometers away, you'll still be there for me, like you always have." She looked down and tried to wipe her tears with the back of her hand, holding on to the proxy doll with her other hand.
Shizuka stepped towards Anzu and embraced her warmly. "Don't worry, we'll always be there for you. And you don't need to do anything to make that fact any more true than it already is."
The older girl buried her head in the redhead's shoulder and let herself be embraced. "Thank you, Shizuka."
"Aww! You're making me tear up!" Hiroto proclaimed loudly.
"Well, look who's getting in touch with his feminine side!" Joey announced, earning a heavy smack to the ear courtesy of Mai Kujaku. "Yeesh, sorry," he murmured then said, "Well, anyway, my sister's right. We won't ever abandon you. You can count on that!" He extended his arm, holding his thumb up and smiling, and in spite of his mockery of Honda, his eyes glistened when he talked. "So what is it that you wanted to try?" he asked.
"It's a ritual I found on an occult website…It's kinda silly, but I thought we could do it to -"
Ryou interrupted Anzu's speech with a firm statement. "Anzu, rituals are dangerous. Are you sure it's safe?"
"Come on, Bakura!" Honda said. "Don't tell me you actually believe in rituals?"
The silver-haired boy frowned and said, "Well, it's not that I believe in them… I'm just superstitious to a reasonable extent. I mean, aren't any of you?"
"There wasn't really anything negative in the article I read. And as long as we don't make any mistakes, then we don't have anything to worry about!" Anzu declared cheerfully, though Ryou's words sent a nasty twinge of fear and hesitation into her resolve.
When no one else would speak, Yugi did, trying to sound as calm and content as he could. "Tell us the instructions then, Anzu."
She grinned and held up the proxy doll, a white paper figure, shaped like a stick man. "It's called 'Sachiko Ever After' and it's supposed to keep everyone who does it together forever -like everlasting friendship. And even though I know we'll be friends forever, this is just a small guarantee." She paused for a moment to survey all the gently smiling faces in front of her, affirming in her mind that she indeed wished to look upon these faces forever. "Okay, so first of all, each of us holds on real tight to a part of the doll. Second, we all have to say 'Sachiko, we beg of you' once for each one of us -that means nine times -but don't say it out loud, say it in your heart. And the last thing we do is we pull on the doll until it rips and we each keep the piece that rips off. And as long as we have that piece of paper, we'll be friends forever."
"That sounds easy enough," Mokuba commented.
Anzu nodded. "Yeah, but make sure you say the chant exactly nine times. Even if you mess up, don't repeat it or it counts as one time."
"Yeah, yeah! I got it! Let's do this!" Joey exclaimed enthusiastically.
"Alright, Joey! Come here…" Anzu held out the doll with one hand and waited as each of her friends gripped their own part of the doll.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
Sachiko, we beg of you.
"Hey, wh-why's the floor shaking!"
"Hang on, everyone!"
"Help, I'm falling!"
"What's going on!"
And so ends the first chapter. I look forward to your feedback!