Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-gi-oh.
Me: Sorry for the long wait, life for me is not going to well for me right now at all. My computer keyboard breaks, then the mouse; and now, my best friend got in a car accident. *cries*
Yugi: *pats back*
Me: *sniffs* Sorry. I'm not gonna do the reviews tonight, frankly I'm too damn tired and miserable, which means this chapter is going to be crap, but I'll edit it later if I have to.
Yugi: It won't be crap, nothing you write is crap.
Me: Yeah right. *cries of sadness and walks away*
Yugi: *sighs* Well, I tried. Since obviously Star's upset and isn't going to explain fully what happened, check her bio; she's posted it there. Otherwise, enjoy chapter 11. *chases after Starheart*
Chapter 11: A Surprise Traveler
The red sand blew quickly over the many hills and dips of the desert, and a thick haziness, caused by the scorching sun, settled in the air like a fog. Though everything else was orange and yellow, the sky stuck out a daring blue that almost made it seem out of place. Sandstorms occurred every so often with the force of a small tornado, and while there seemed no immediate threat at first, the sweltering heat and harsh arid winds told a different story. Life was hard here, and even the few small desert creatures scurried underneath to avoid the immense heat, or made their way to the river, the only source of water within thousands of miles.
And among this desolate life, Tea Gardner lay unconscious, face-first in the sand.
Groaning as she awoke, she tiredly opened her eyes and pushed herself up off the ground with her arms to observe her surroundings. Ahead of her, three-dimensional triangular structures loomed in the distance, though they were hard to depict due to the swirling sand and blinding sun that bore into her eyes like millions of high-powered search lights. She was weak, beaten down by the sandy winds and hot sun for what seemed like days. Coughing, Tea found her throat to be parched. "I need water," she said feebly, "or I'll never live an hour out here. I don't know how I got here in the first place, but I can't dwell on that now; first I gotta find shelter." She stood up and turned around in the other direction, covering her eyes with one of her hands, and squinted.
What she glimpsed made her heart jump with joy. Not far in the distance, a small village loomed in her midst, along with what appeared to be a big long, blue thing that stretched as far as the eye could see. It seemed that the town was spread out along it, as if it depended on it. "That must be the Nile River then," Tea presumed. She nodded. Realizing what she had to do, Tea took a dry, deep breath, and ventured out over the golden hills of Egypt.
'I was stupid to think I could make it all this way without water.'
Tea looked hopelessly at the town further on. It had seemed like it was going to be such a short walk before, like it was so near…yet an hour passed and it did not come across as being any closer. And that hour had taken several things away from Tea: her energy, her stored water, and more importantly, her faith. With each passing second, going on became less vital and giving up more of an option. In her heart, she knew she could not hold out much longer, and her body agreed.
"No…," she kept telling herself, "I have to get there….there must be….someone….that can….help me…."
But even as Tea said it she doubted it. She had not seen anyone while she was walking, and if there was someone she was sure she would have glimpsed them by now…
Finally, her body had had enough. She fell down of exhaustion, the gritty sand smacking against her knees and bringing instant pain. Tears would have welled up in her eyes had she not been so dehydrated. She coughed again, this time more roughly, and looked down at the sand.
'Well, I guess this is it,' she thought desolately. She didn't have enough energy to speak. 'I'm sorry Yugi, Joey, Tristan, Yami….I tried.' Her vision became fuzzy, and she found the little pieces of sand she was looking at now became one big blur of color. She started to slowly close her eyes.
And that was when she heard it. A faint voice, yelling in the distance to someone she didn't know, and how it sounded so desperate… Could it be calling out to her? A whisper of hope glimmered in her mind, and using every bit of energy and will she had, Tea lifted her head up slightly and gently opened her eyes.
Yet again, all the girl could see was a wisp of color, but something was stood out. For amidst the red sand and sun, the blue sky and yellow buildings, an odd tan figure moved in the distance. It was huge, much too big to be a human, and it was trotting over the desert sands without quagmire. Above it, however, sitting on its rounded back, a smaller character sat, waving his arms, every now and then cuffing his mouth.
Tea nearly died of happiness. At long last, her savior had arrived. But would he make it in time? He still seemed so far away. Could he even see her? Was this just an illusion, just a malevolent trick of her mind? These thoughts plagued her brain, and before she knew it, she felt her head hit the hot sand beneath her. The last thing she heard was the stranger's voice before she fell into darkness.
They were not out of danger yet.
As a matter of fact, they were probably in more danger currently then they were before; at least in the Summoning Realm, they had their dragons. Now they had nothing except the roaring of the struggling engines and Joey's skills to get them out of this mess.
Joey was strapped in a passenger's seat looking terrified, and Yami had managed to get into the assistant pilot's chair and was holding on for dear life. The wind force inside the jet was incredible. Unfastened objects that had not fallen out already were flying through the enormous tear implanted on the side, and a hit from one of them was so great it could easily knock someone unconscious.
Seto spared a hand and passed a pair of headphones with a speaker attached to them to Yami. "Call any local airports nearby," he instructed, "Tell them we've got a falling plane and to clear all runways." He pointed to a red button.
Yami nodded and pressed it. Immediately, a computerized voice spoke in his ears: Searching for all local airports. Searching….Searching…. One airport found. Connected to Nanjing Airway Services and Airport. Chinese translator on.
"Mayday, mayday!" Yami yelled, "We've got a falling plane and we need a runway."
"….State your location."
Yami looked at the radar. "It appears to be 118 degrees North and 33 degrees West."
"Standby………………………………………….Ok, we have you sighted. We'll update our coordinates onto your radar."
Yami looked and found, just like the man said, a now flashing green dot was spotted on the navigation system. Seto glanced at it and nodded his approval, then went back to trying to control the plane.
"Hold on tight guys."
Yami gazed at Seto. "What do you mean?"
Seto gritted his teeth. "This airport is closing in much faster then I anticipated. We're going to have to start diving right now."
Joey face faulted. "Now? We're going so fast we won't be able to get the plane level when we reach the ground!"
"We don't have a choice!" Seto shouted, his face red with frustration, "We're already falling, and if we don't we'll pass it, and then we wont have anywhere to land! We've gotta risk it!"
Yami buckled his seatbelt. "Ok. Let's go."
Seto did a thumbs up, took a deep breath, and pushed the control stick upwards.
Without warning, the plane took a sharp dip, and Joey and Yami and even Seto found themselves tilted forward by the extreme gravitational pull. The only thing that was keeping the jet from rocking was the tremendous speed from the extra boosters; indeed, if they were not on it would be rocking so violently it would seem like it was a puppet being thrown from side to side by invisible string.
"Yami." Seto said. Yami looked at him. "When I count to three, I want you to put the wheels down. Got it?"
Yami bobbed his head as he watched the airport become rapidly closer. He put his hand over a small black button marked "Wheels."
"One…." Seto turned off the boosters, and instantly the plane became unsteady once more. He clenched his teeth and grasped the joystick with two hands to keep it steady as the speed swiftly decreased.
"Two…." Joey closed his eyes in terror as the plane began to sway as it did earlier. This could not happen, not now….
Seto growled loudly as his commands to turn level were ignored. Warning signs beeped stridently as the plane neared the ground, and Yami glanced at Seto nervously. "Come on Seto, you can do it," Yami said encouragingly, though it showed hints of fear.
"COME ON!" Seto yelled, "MOVE! MOVE YOU DAMN THING MOVE!" But the jet obviously did not listen to verbal orders because it kept plummeting to the ground.
Yami decided it was time to take matters into his own hands. The third eye shined brightly on his forehead, and within seconds the plane was engulfed in a magnificent white light that made the two remaining passengers cover their eyes. It finally died down, but the outline of the plane was still glowing.
"What the hell are you doing?" Joey screamed at Yami, but Yami did not respond. His eyes were unblinkingly concentrated and the eye still gleamed on his forehead. Unbuckling his seat belt, he stood up, miraculously not falling backwards, and held out his hands, motioning them upwards.
Slowly, the aircraft started to level out. The airport was so close now that you could see the shocked faces of the people running from the glowing plane as it descended to the runway. Joey stared in amazement. Seto, realizing that they would touch down in mere seconds, put in the control to make the wheels come down, and was greatly surprised that they responded.
At long last, the plane finally landed. The elder Kaiba pulled the throttle back, and the plane, still radiant with the white light, eventually came to a halt.
The light that outlined the wounded jet faded away, and Yami slumped to the ground in fatigue. Seto, still in shock, unfastened his safety belt and checked Yami over. Joey joined him soon after.
"Is he okay?" he asked, panting.
"He'll be fine," Seto replied, finding a pulse, "He just fainted from exhaustion."
"What the hell did he do?"
Seto shook his head. "I dunno. Let's just be happy that we made it."
"Oh, I'm joyous." Joey responded. Seto grinned.
"Let's get out of here; I'm kinda sick of this plane, aren't you?"
"Yeah, I say we burn it afterwards." They both laughed, and with Seto carrying the unconscious Yami on his back, exited the jet at last.
Yami awoke to the sound of running water and the humming of a computer. He moaned and leisurely propped himself up, opening his eyes to the sight in front of him. Seto was typing something on his laptop on the other single bed adjacent to Yami's, both of which had a simple flowered bedspread with blank sheets. Not far from Seto's bed against the wall was a matching couch that had all of their supplies strewn over it, and completely across the room in front of Yami's bed sat a TV on a small brown dresser. To the right of Yami was a white door that matched the wall (which Yami assumed was the bathroom due to the steam coming from the door), and on the wall next to it was the entry door, which was also white. The maroon rug finished the room.
Seto noticed Yami's movement and shut the case of his laptop. "Finally awake huh? It's about time."
"What do you mean?" Yami asked in confusion.
"You were out cold for three days now. Whatever you did on that jet must have tired you out a lot." Seto raised an eyebrow. "Say, what did you do on the plane?"
Yami shrugged. "Magic," he said simply.
"Oh that helps me out a great deal," Seto said sarcastically.
Yami looked around. "Where are we anyway? I remember landing somewhere called Nanjing Airport or something, so I'm assuming we're in Nanjing, but what country is that in?"
"China," Seto replied. "That void we went through must have been very long, because we're about one hundred miles inland then we were prior to going into it. Before, we were over the Yellow Sea, remember?"
"Oh yeah," Yami said thoughtfully, remembering the big body of water they were traveling over previously.
"The only problem is, none of us speak Chinese," the Kaiba said, grinning. "Luckily, one of the guys at the airport spoke English, and he hooked us up with this hotel here. Nice guy."
Yami nodded. "Joey in the shower?"
"Yeah," Seto said, indicating to the door with steam coming from it and shaking his head, "If must have told him a million times; he can't take a long shower, it gets steamy in here and there's no windows." Yami smiled.
It became quiet again, with the exception of the running water coming from the bathroom. Seto dazed out, seemingly in a daydream, and Yami flopped back on his pillow and looked at the ceiling. He still could not believe that this had happened; that Yugi and the others were gone, that Sheantu had returned, even the adventures they had had already, and the fact that he shared them with his biggest rival. He chuckled; who knew Kaiba could be so kind? The Kaiba he knew was always so dark-hearted and cold. Privately Yami wondered if there secrets that Seto kept to himself, things of his past that made him so cruel, but if Kaiba didn't want to tell him, then he wasn't going to push it. He did owe him, after all, for getting them this far. Though he hated to admit it, he and Seto would not have gotten anywhere if it wasn't for his help.
Yami turned to Seto, apparent on asking him a question, but stopped when he noticed the look of sadness on his face. "What's wrong?" he questioned softly, worried.
Seto broke out of his trance. "Nothing," he snapped viciously. He turned away and grabbed his laptop from its position next to him on the bed, and began to type once more.
Yami sighed. 'I guess you can't change the old Seto totally,' he thought sourly. But he found that it didn't bother him that much anyway; he felt that if Seto didn't want to tell, then he didn't have to (and wasn't going to). He himself had matters he did not wish to expose to the others. He just wished that this would all be over soon.
"Do you think she'll okay?"
"I don't know; she has been out for a week now."
"Who is she?"
Tea stirred and slowly opened her eyes. Immediately, they became blurry, but after blinking a few times she could see clearly. In front of her was a woman wearing a white dress with long sandy blonde hair tied up in a bun and brown eyes, clutching a damp cloth and looking concerned. Next to her was the man Tea recognized from the desert, holding the bowl that she presumed went with the cloth. He, like his wife, also had sandy blond hair, but with blue eyes, and was wearing brown pants with a nice white shirt.
"I don't mean to be rude, but who are you?" asked the lady, an Egyptian accent ringing in her voice.
"Tea Gardner," she responded, appearing confused. "Where am I?"
"You're in Egypt," replied the man with the same accent, "just outside of Giza, if you want to know."
Tea nodded her head. She examined the area around her. It was a very plain room with white walls with only one window. The floor had a plaited design with yellow and white, and the small bed she was laying in was also yellow. There was a petite fan by the door. It did not seem like the room was well taken care of, because almost everywhere the paint was chipping and there was dust all over the place.
"I'm sorry for the lack of appeal in here, miss," stated the woman, looking at her feet. "This is the guest room, and we aren't very rich, if you catch my drift…."
Tea smiled. "It's okay, I don't mind. I'm just grateful for you saving me."
This time it was the man's turn to speak up. "It isn't I you should be thanking, it should be Maat," he said, pointing out the window to a camel chained to a stake in the sand. "She kept insisting to go that way, even though I was heading out for Cairo…." He laughed. "She's persistent, that one. But it's a good thing she is, eh? I probably wouldn't have found you, Miss Gardner."
"Tea's just fine," she said, grinning, "and I pay my gratitude to Maat and your family for taking me in. I would have been in an even worse situation if you hadn't."
"Oh, it's no problem at all," replied the women, beaming. "It's nice to have visitors once in a while; not a lot of people live near here and its good to see new faces around the house."
There was silence for a short period until the lady exclaimed, "Oh! We forgot to introduce ourselves! I am Isis, and that is my husband, Neo."
"Pleased to meet you," remarked Tea.
"Say, where are you from? You have an accent that I've never heard before."
"Japan?" cried Neo. "How did you get from there all the way to the middle of the Egyptian desert?"
Tea sweatdropped, feeling uncomfortable. "It's a long story…."
Isis frowned, but did not push the subject. Instead, she said, "Well, I suppose you should to get to Giza, yes? There are many resources there that can help you out on your journey."
Tea got up and nodded in approval. "Ai, I should do that. How far is it from here?"
"Not far at all," replied Neo, "You could walk there. However, if you don't feel up to it, I could give you a ride on Maat…."
Tea held up her hands. "No, it's okay; I'll walk. I feel fine now thanks to your wonderful healing." Isis blushed and Neo smiled.
"Well," said Isis, "if you do wish to walk, please, allow us to give you some money." She handed her some Egyptian pounds. "You won't get anywhere without these."
Tea looked at the money in her hand and started to protest. "Oh, but—"
Neo shook his head. "You need that money Tea; they don't accept yen here. And we know you're a good person; you'll put it to good use."
Tea reluctantly gave in and sighed. She said goodbye to Isis and Neo (hugging Isis, who blushed), and waving as she exited the home, trekked out onto the road. She could see the bustling of Giza just a little ahead of her, and thinking of Sheantu and how he might be watching, walked a little faster through the own town's crowd.
But it was the sight of one person who was leaning over to look at the merchandise at a stand that made her stop dead in her tracks.
Yami: *looks around* Well, seeing as no one's here…. I guess I gotta say REVIEW! For Star's sake anyway…. They do make her happy *hint hint* Thank you!