Y/C/C (Ykarzel's Constant Chatter):

Hikari Ykarzel: Guess who's here with me?

Shadowed Halo: Hi people!

Azzy: *suppressed growl* Hi.

Yami Ykarzel: Oh god, why is he here?"

Hikari Ykarzel: Cause I love them!

Shadowed Halo: And because we love you too.

Azzy: 'We' do?

Shadowed Halo: Yeah Az, don't you remember? Cause you said- *Az clamps hand over her mouth*

Hikari Ykarzel: *pokes her yami* Hey Yami, I just thought of something.

Yami Ykarzel: What?

Hikari Ykarzel: You are me, and I am you. Az is Halo, and Halo is Az, right?

Yami Ykarzel: Right... Where is this going?

Hikari Ykarzel: Well, if I love Halo, how can you hate Az?

Shadowed Halo: *Tries to pull away Az's hand.* Mhmhmhm!

Hikari Ykarzel: *walks over and pulls Halo from Az, shoving him at Yami Ykarzel*

Shadowed Halo: And if I love Ykarzel how can you hate her yami?

Hikari Ykarzel: *whispers in Halo's ear* I think my yami has a thing for your yami.

Yami Ykarzel: *hears through the link* I do not! You will pay for even thinking that!

Azzy: I was going to go to my soul room, but this sounds interesting.

Hikari Ykarzel: My Yami is going to hurt me! *Hides behind Halo*

Yami Ykarzel: *Growl, starts towards Halo and Hikari Ykarzel*

Azzy: *Steps between Yami Ykarzel and Halo* Now you have to get through two of us to get to her.

Yami Ykarzel: *Hesitates*

Hikari Ykarzel: *Head pops out from behind Halo* I feel loved. *Sees Yami Ykarzel's death glare.* *squeak* * hides* *shouts from behind Halo* My Yami loves Azzy! My Yami loves Azzy!

Azzy: *Raises eyebrow at Yami Ykarzel*

Shadowed Halo: *devilish grin* You know Az, I recall you saying something to me about a little crush...

Hikari Ykarzel: *Grin*

Yami Ykarzel: *Blink*

Hikari Ykarzel: I don't own Yugioh or Starbursts. Enjoy. Oh, Halo, this one's for you. ~_^ *whispers* I'm glad I got to be the one to teach you.

Shadowed Halo: *blush*

Warning: Contains Yaoi content. That means boys being kissie with boys.

The Perfect Kiss

Joey slid into his normal seat beside his best friend. Yugi looked up at him with bright amethyst eyes. "They didn't bother you, did they?"

"Ah, dose homophobes can kiss ma ass. Don' worry 'bout it."

"I'm sorry," Yugi said, apologizing for what must have been the millionth time.

"I said don' worry about it Yug. If it bothered me, I'd do sumthin' 'bout it."

After word had escaped into the school that Yugi was gay, Joey had been attacked immediately as his 'boyfriend'. Yugi wasn't much fun to tease; he just looked at you and walked away. Joey was much easier to get a reaction out of.

Yugi felt guilty, but in a way he was touched. It didn't bother Joey when the bullies called him Yugi's boyfriend. When they got a reaction was when they badmouthed Yugi in front of Joey. But Joey was a fighter, and if Joey was in a fight, Tristan was right behind him, so though they called names and made threats, the bullies very rarely used physical means as their choice weapon. That Yugi was very thankful for. He wouldn't be able to live with himself if Joey was getting beaten up for him.

Nobody ever laid a hand on Yugi though. Yugi didn't understand it, but there were reasons behind this that he didn't know. For one, Joey made sure to the voice the fact that if anybody ever touched Yugi, the Boston blonde would make sure that person was never able to move again. Another, was in a way due to Yami. When a bully

looked at Yugi, something always stopped them, a fear, or just knowing, that there was something inside that innocent little boy that would kick their ass.

"You're the best friend I've ever had Joey."

Joey blushed slightly, looking over at Yugi through the corners of his eyes. "Hey, no prob. Um, do ya think we could meet in da park afta school? Dere's sumthin' dat I wanna talk to ya 'bout."

Yugi looked slightly confused. "Yeah, okay, if you want."

"Danks, Yug."

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Yugi sat on the swing, waiting for Joey. He had gotten another detention. But not for being late this time for fighting, fighting in Yugi's name. Guilt wallowed in the pit of his stomach. Tristan hadn't been around this time. Joey had held his own, the streets had trained him well, but he hadn't beaten all five of them. Luckily, a teacher had showed up, given them all a detention, and separated them.

Yugi had heard about it in last period from Tea, who said that Joey had gotten hit pretty hard a few times. They had actually marked him visibly. Though he must have gotten bruises in places you couldn't see, Joey had always walked away from fights looking exactly like he had when he walked in.

There was a sound beside him and the blonde in question sat down on the other swing. Yugi stood up and walked over to stand in front of him. Joey was looking down at his feet. Yugi reached out and took a hold if his face under his chin, tilting his head.

A bluish purple crescent graced the otherwise faultless face right under Joey's right eye. Yugi hissed under his breath, carefully running a thumb over the discolored area. Joey shut his eyes, and Yugi, taking that to mean he was in pain, let go.

"Does it hurt?"

"Nah. He came from behind. I've grown too dependent on Tristan bein' at ma back. Dis'll teach me I s'pose. I'm outta practice."

"I'm really sorry Joey. What did they say?"

"Oh you know, the usual. Yer boyfriend's a fag, that bull. Don't feel bad Yug. Yer not makin' me fight, I do it all on my own."

"Yes, but it's my fault they pick on you."

Joey shrugged. "If it wasn' because of you dey'd do it for some odda reason. Or dey'd pick on somebody else, maybe someone who couldn' defend demselves, and dat would be worse. So I'm glad it's me."

Yugi was silent, unable to argue with Joey's logic. He sat back down on his swing. "So what did you want to talk about?"

"Oh, right, dat. Well, um, we have off Monday, and I was wonderin', if maybe, you'd wanna catch a movie."

Yugi looked over at Joey, who was staring at his feet, his cheeks tinged pink. "Sure. But why couldn't you ask me that at school?"

Joey's pink cheeks turned red. "Cause, I kinda meant as like, a date."

Yugi's eyes went wide, and he himself turned red. Joey kept his eyes on his feet. "Really? As in a date, date?"

Joey looked up at the sky and then to the side, anywhere but at Yugi. "Yeah, a date, date. If not, ya know, dat's okay-"

"I'd love to," Yugi interrupted with a tentative smile.

Joey finally looked over at him, then smiled himself. "Great. I'll pick you up at seven, okay?" Yugi nodded and Joey stood up. "I gotta get home den. Dad'll be wonderin' where I went. See you Monday."

"See you." Yugi waited until Joey was completely out of sight before standing from his swing. He turned around, grabbing onto the chains to support himself, and squealed. The younger kids, now just getting out of school and arriving at the park, all turned to look at him. He grinned brightly at them, and they smiled and giggled. As he made his way home, he was unable to remove the grin from his face.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Yugi let the door slam behind him, and bolted up the stairs. Grandpa wasn't home for the next week or so, and therefore there was nobody to yell at him for making unnecessary noise. He threw his bag to the corner and fell backwards onto the bed.

/Yami!/

Yami's rich voice chuckled in his mind. //I heard, Aibou. I am very happy for you.//

/Please come out, Yami. I'm full of energy with nowhere to put it./

In a moment, Yami appeared beside Yugi on the bed. Yugi grinned and squealed, jumping into Yami's lap and throwing his arms around him. He chuckled again, wrapping his arms around the smaller boy and returning the hug. Yugi sighed, turning to relax up against Yami's chest.

"You two will make an adorable couple."

"Yami, you don't mind do you? You know that I love you more then anything and I-"

"Shh, Yugi, no. I don't mind." He squeezed his hikari lightly to insure him that this was true. "You share your soul with me and give your heart to another."

Yugi was silent for a moment. "What about your heart?"

"It has already been stolen, little one. I am waiting for it to be given back to me, or to be replaced with another." Yugi waited for a moment to see if Yami would continue, but all that met him was silence.

"You're not going to tell me who are you?"

"That is a topic for another day, Aibou."

Yugi sighed, shifting slightly in Yami's arms. He decided to change the subject, because Yami hated to be pushed. "I wonder what we're going to see."

"Well, if he picks a funny movie, then he wasn't to stay friends for a while, this is just a promise that there should be more to come later. If he picks a scary movie, it means he wants to hold your hand. If he picks a romantic movie, he wants to kiss you."

Yugi suddenly grew stiff in Yami's arms. "What's wrong?"

Yugi pulled away from him enough to turn around and look up at him with scared purple eyes. "Yami, I don't know how to kiss."

Yami smiled at him, bent down, and kissed him lightly on the lips. "See Aibou, not so bad."

Yugi blushed pink, shaking his head. He'd been kissed like that before. Once by Ryou on a dare. Once by Tea. He'd announced his sexual preferences the day after that. "You kissed me, I didn't kiss you. And that, that's not the kind of kissing I mean."

Yami couldn't help but grin. "Do you want me to teach you?"

Yugi's pink face turned red. "N-not if you don't want to," he muttered.

"What, and pass up a chance to spend time with my hikari? Don't you worry, in three days, you will blow him away. We'll start our lessons tonight."

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

A few hours later, Yugi sat on the couch, blushing hotly. Yami stood in front of him, and neither really moved. "Yugi, love, this is going to be really hard if you don't look at me."

Tentatively, Yugi looked up, only to find that Yami's face was only inches from his. Before Yugi could react, Yami's lips were on his own, and Yami's tongue was in his mouth. Yugi gasped involuntarily into the kiss, but remained stiff and didn't react.

After a moment of lack of movement on Yugi's part, Yami pulled away. He met his hikari's eyes, and raised an eyebrow. "Yugi, in order to kiss, you have to kiss back you know, right?"

It wasn't possible for Yugi to blush harder, but he would have if he could have. He nodded weakly, and once more Yami took him by surprise. Very slowly, Yugi attempted to move and respond to Yami's questing tongue. He lost his confidence quickly, however, and pulled away.

Yami smiled at him. "Well that was a start."

Yugi frowned miserably. "That was awful. I'll never be good at this."

Yami grinned and ruffled his light's hair. "I know just what you need." He walked out of the room, and returned with a large bowl. "Exercise."

Yugi stared at the bowl. It was full of cherry stems, slices of orange, and Starburst candies wrapped in colored paper. He looked up at his yami, very confused.

"Okay, let me show you." Yami reached over and picked a cherry stem out of the bowl. He popped it into his mouth and concentrated for a moment. Then he spit the stem back out onto his hand, and in its length there was a tiny tight knot.

Yugi stared. "How did you do that?"

"With my tongue and teeth. Then there's these," he said, picking up a candy. He stuck that in his mouth also, wrapper and all. A moment later he pulled the wrapper out and could be seen chewing on the soft candy.

Yugi's mouth formed a small circle. Yami picked up one of the orange slices and put that in his mouth also. When he removed it, every piece of the fruit was gone, leaving a bare clean skin. Yami grinned as his swallowed the fruit. "Start with the oranges, then the cherries, then the starbursts."

A look of complete concentration crossed Yugi's face as he picked up an orange slice. Yami had to bite his lip to keep from laughing. His Aibou was absolutely adorable like that, eyebrow creased, cheeks puffed out from being filled with orange. Suddenly, Yugi started coughing. Yami rushed to his side.

"Spit it out," he ordered, holding out his hand. Yugi obeyed, spitting the remaining orange into Yami's hand. He continued to cough for a moment, before taking a deep breath and smiling sheepishly at Yami. "And what did we learn from that Aibou?"

"Breathe through your nose?" Yugi offered.

Yami nodded. "You naturally have a small mouth, little one. Not a bad thing, just something you have to consider. But on the bright side," he grinned and ran his thumb across Yugi's bottom lip. "You have beautiful lips."

Yugi blushed and frowned at him. "You're so vain, Yami."

Yami grinned. "Can I help it that we're gorgeous? Ask Joey, why don't you, I'm sure he'd agree with me."

Yugi blushed again but couldn't help but frown slightly. "He's my best friend Yami. I don't know, I'm worried. Does he really look at me that way, or is he just tired of people thinking he does and feels he might as well?"

Yami shook his head and pulled his light into a hug. "Aibou, why can't you see just how desirable you are? Would Joey do that to you?"

"No," Yugi said slowly. "Never."

"Well then, stop worrying about it. Try another orange, and this time don't try to swallow it until you take the skin out of your mouth, okay?"

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

An hour later, Yugi spat yet another orange peel out disgustedly. The peel was clean of fruit, but Yugi made a face at it anyway. "I'm so sick of fruit Yami." He had tried a few cherry stems, but all were removed from his mouth mutilated with nothing that resembled a knot. He had even tried the candies, but the paper only dissolved in his mouth, leaving him spitting out fruit chews and paper for the next two minutes.

"Well, you made a lot of progress today, little love," Yami said holding up the orange peel. "At least, in theory you made a lot of progress. Let us test it." Once again, taking Yugi by surprise, Yami pressed his lips against Yugi's and inserted his tongue. Yugi still didn't react to it. Using his tongue, Yami prompted Yugi's tongue to move with a push. Shocked, Yugi pulled back with a gasp.

Yami stared evenly at Yugi, who blushed and looked down. "Why'd you do that?" he asked.

"I want you to move, Yugi. I don't want you to sit there and do nothing." Yami let out a sigh. "Have some confidence. That's enough for tonight. Go to bed."

Yugi stood and started to walk towards the stairs. He turned back and looked at Yami with bright purple eyes. "Are you coming?"

Smiling, Yami stood and followed. He laid down beside Yugi and wrapped him protectively in his arms. They laid there together for a moment, drifting towards sleep, before Yugi spoke. "Yami?"

"Hmm?" came the sleepy reply.

"Am I cheating on Joey by doing this?"

Any notion of sleep fled Yami's mind. He loosened his grip on Yugi and sat up slightly. "No, Aibou, I don't think you are. However, if it feels like you are, and you are still doing it, then you are, no matter what you are doing. Do you feel like you are cheating on him? Do you wish me to stop?"

"No, I don't. I don't feel like I'm cheating on him. That's why I asked. Shouldn't I?"

Yami laid back down, pulling Yugi close once more. "I don't feel so. You are my hikari. I love you, more than life, and you are part of me. There is a piece of us that we share, and that is the level we connect on, but we each have our own pieces too, and that is why we both love another. Does that make sense to you?"

Yugi was silent for a moment. "Not really, but basically, we love each other stronger than it should be possible, but we aren't in love with each other, right?"

Yami grinned to himself. His hikari had the gift of understatement. "I think it's a bit more complicated than that, love, but yes, that is the basic idea."

Yugi smiled slightly with closed eyes. "Good. Just promise me, when you end up with that person you are in love with, that you won't leave me."

"I could never leave you, Aibou."

Yugi was starting to fall into the haze of sleep. "And you'll still sleep with me, once in a while, right?"

Yami chuckled mentally. "Hai, love," he whispered, kissing his cheek as Yugi slipped into the dream world.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

The next morning, Yugi's eyes snapped open when he felt something very warm and wet run across his lips. It took him a moment to register that it was Yami that was kissing him, or trying to wake him up to kiss him, and another to remember why in the hell his yami would kiss him that way.

Reluctantly, Yugi parted his lips, and Yami's tongue dove in slowly, exploring every inch of Yugi's small mouth. //I'm not moving until you kiss back.//

/Yami!/

//Come on, Yugi,// Yami said, while pushing at Yugi's tongue with his own. //This isn't something you can really do wrong. You're not going to mess up. And even if you do, it's just me. Better me then Joey, right?//

/I… guess…/ Slowly, Yugi began to move his tongue in response to Yami, trying to mimic what his darker half was doing.

At Yami's positive response, Yugi's confidence increased slightly, and his tongue slowly pushed its way past his own lips and Yami's.

Surprised, Yami pulled away, and Yugi blushed a deep red. "I- I'm sorry. Didn't I do it right?"

Yami smiled and placed a chaste kiss on his wet pink lips. "You did great. That's why it surprised me."

Yugi playfully shoved his yami off him. "Thanks for the vote of confidence, Yami." Yami laughed, a sound that so far, only Yugi could get out of him.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

All too soon, Monday arrived. Yugi woke up nervous, and couldn't get the feeling to go away. It was like there was something tickling him between the shoulder blades, that one place you couldn't reach. Yami was attempted to calm him, to no avail.

//Wear the leather, Aibou.//

/But what if it looks like I'm trying to hard?/

//You wear it everyday under your school uniform. How can you be trying to hard? Plus, he's seen you in it, and he's told you before that it looks good on you.//

Yugi's resolve faltered. /He has, hasn't he?/ It had just been a casual comment, made a few months ago by the blonde while they were changing after gym and Joey saw him before he got his uniform over the outfit.

//Yes, love. Trust me. Okay? I know what I'm talking about. You look good like that. It practically screams "I'm innocent, but only because I'm being held back by straps."//

Yugi jerked around, his eyes wide. "Yami!" he exclaimed.

The millennium spirit started to laugh, as Yugi continued to glare at him. "That's not true, Yami."

He stopped laughing long enough to grace his hikari with a small smile. "I know that, Aibou. Now, are you ready?"

Yugi glanced at himself in he mirror once more. "I guess so," he said reluctantly.

"Good," Yami said, standing up off the bed. He picked Yugi up and cradled him in his arms, and started to carry him downstairs.

"Yami, I can walk!" Yugi huffed, but smiled all the same. It was a long standing joke between them that Yami would carry Yugi around.

"Sure you can," the darker one replied. "That doesn't mean I have to let you."

Giggling, Yugi was thrown carelessly on the couch, and Yami sat down beside him. "Be careful tonight, alright love?"

Yugi's bright eyes looked up at him. He was anxious, which was a feeling that Yami didn't deal with very well. "If you want, you can come along."

Yami shook his head. "No, Aibou, this night is for you alone. But, I want to know everything as soon as you get home, understand? And if he touches you, I'll kill him."

Yugi giggled, a warm feeling spreading in him from Yami's concern. "Joey wouldn't do that, Yami, you needn't worry about me."

Yami sighed. "I know that, but I still always do. I-" he was cut off by the ring of the doorbell. Yugi's eyes became brighter with anticipation and nervousness.

"I'll get it, you go act like you're doing something. You don't want to look eager," Yami said with a smirk.

Yugi nodded with wide eyes, turning and running from the room. Yami, grinning to himself, crossed the room and opened up the door.

Joey looked up at him with slightly nervous honey eyes. "Oh, hey Yami."

Yami growled, reaching out and grabbing Joey by the collar to pull him in. "Now listen up, Joey," he said through clenched teeth.

Joey stared at him, not really scared, just shocked. Suddenly, Yami smiled and let him go. "If you were anybody else, I'd kill you, so feel special," the yami said, shutting the door calmly.

"Um, danks, I think."

Yugi walked into the room. "Yami, that wasn't very nice," he said with a small pout. "I was watching through your eyes."

Yami grinned, "I know."

Yugi looked up and met Joey's eyes, a slight blush spreading across his cheeks. "So what are you two going to see?" Yami asked.

Joey gave the title of the movie, and Yami looked pointedly at Yugi. "I hear that it's a pretty funny movie."

Joey nodded, a slight grin on his face, not catching the meaning that passed between the pair. "Are you ready Yug?" he asked, trying not to look as nervous as he felt.

"Hai," the shorter boy replied.

Yami walked across the room and took his hikari's hand in his. Leading Yugi towards the door, he took Joey's hand and placed his light's in it. "Take good care of him," Yami said seriously.

Both boys blushed, now holding hands, but Joey nodded, leading Yugi out of the door. Yami closed it behind them, smiling sadly to himself. His light was growing up.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Joey's hand rested lightly on the steering wheel as they drove back towards Yugi's house. Joey recited a line from the film, and they both broke into hysterical laughter again. Yugi hardly even noticed when they had stopped he was laughing so hard.

Suddenly, the laughter faded, and they were both left in a thick silence. "Um, Joey?" Yugi said quietly.

"Yes?" Joey asked, blushing slightly and staring at his hand, still on top of the wheel.

"I had a really good time tonight." He hated the words as soon as they left his mouth. The sounded so… cheesy.

Joey smiled and looked over at his best friend through the corners of his eyes. "Ya, so did I." He sat up suddenly. "Hold on, stay dere."

He opened the door and jumped out of the car. Walking around, he opened Yugi's door, and offered him his hand. Yugi blushed a deep red, but smiling shyly, took Joey's hand and let the taller boy help him out of the car. "I'll walk you to da door."

"Oh, you don't have to-" Yugi said as Joey started to lead them up the walk, but cut off his objection when he noticed that Joey had yet to let go of his hand.

Yugi smiled, a sweet warm feeling spreading through his body, starting at the hand that Joey held. He shifted, and entangled his fingers with Joey's. Joey responded by giving Yugi's hand a small squeeze.

All too soon, they reached the door. Joey stopped walking, turning to Yugi with a small smile. Yugi looked up at him. "I guess dis is goodbye."

Yugi nodded, frowning. "I don't really want to go, though."

"Well, we'll jus' have ta do dis again. How about Wednesday?"

Yugi nodded. Slowly, Joey let go of his hand. He blushed slightly, shrugging. "G'night, Yugi."

"Night, Joey." He started to walk away, and Yugi turned around to slip inside, and found himself face to face with himself.

"Yami!" he exclaimed, jumping backwards. "Don't do that to me!" he whined.

Yami ignored his complaint. "How did it go? Tell me everything. Did you have fun?"

A bright grin spread across his face. Turning, he fell backwards into Yami's arms. "It was wonderful."

Yami held his hikari lightly. "That good?"

Yugi nodded. "He's such a gentleman. He opens doors for me, he bought my ticket, he walked me do the door, he held my hand."

Yami started to laugh, and Yugi looked up at him questioningly. "He's making you the girl."

Yugi shrugged. "I know, I don't care. He's good at it. But it's so cute! He gets a little blush on his face, and then it's like, he's following a script, like he doesn't want to mess up."

Yami shook his head, and pushed Yugi up so he could stand on his own again. "Well, I'd never be the girl, that's all. I'm glad you had fun. But he didn't kiss you?"

Yugi shook his head slowly. "But," he added brightly, "we're going out again in two days."

Yami grinned, patting him on the head. "Way to score, little one."

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

The next morning, getting ready for school, Yugi met another small problem. The problem was school. How was he supposed to act around Joey in front of people that they knew? "I don't know Yami. What if he wants to keep it a secret? What do we do differently now? How do I act? I don't want him to get beat up anymore."

Yami placed his hands on Yugi's shoulders, looking down into his worried violet eyes. "Yugi, don't worry so much. You've already let him take the dominate position, so let him call the shots at school. You don't care if people know, do you?" Yugi shook his head in response. "Well, then if he doesn't care, he'll make a move. If he wants to keep it a secret for a while, he'll act the same way he used to before. Okay? Understand?"

Yugi nodded slowly, taking a deep breath and smiling at Yami. The spirit always knew what to say to calm him down. "Thanks, Yami. I don't know what I'd do without you."

Yami rolled his eyes and lightly ruffled his love's hair. "Lock yourself in your bedroom and never emerge."

Yami's comment didn't hurt, because Yugi knew that it was true. But on the same token, if he wasn't here for Yami, the soul would not only be locked in the puzzle, but locked in his own world of solitude and misery.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

When they did reach the school, Yugi walked slowly off the bus, his thoughts turned slightly inward as he talked to Yami.

He jumped slightly as he felt a hand on his shoulder. He snapped around to find himself looking into beautiful honey brown eyes. "Joey!" he exclaimed. "You're early, well, early for you anyway."

Joey smiled. "You mean not late?" His hand slid casually from Yugi's shoulder down his arm to join hands. The lavender eyed boy said nothing, but smiled shyly as Joey turned and started to lead the way towards the school, never letting Yugi's hand go.

/Yami…/

//Let him call the shots, Aibou. Just be you, and don't do anything.//

Despite the rumors that flew around, nobody really thought the two were dating. However, when the pair walked hand in hand down the hallway, nobody took much notice. It wasn't that they were being discreet about it, it was that the sight looked so right and so normal that people's eyes just passed right over it and didn't take note.

They reached Yugi's locker first. The small boy paused, dropping Joey's hand to open the lock. He knew Joey was looking over his shoulder, but he didn't care if the blonde knew his combination.

Once open, Yugi fell to his knees to pull out the texts he would need for his morning classes out of the bottom. Joey leaned against the locker beside him, waiting for him to get organized. When Yugi stood back up, books cradled in his arms, Joey gave him a look.

"You're too cute to be that smart," he said softly, reaching out and taking the three heavy text books out of his arms.

Yugi blushed a very deep red, but shut his locker with a small snap. "Are you going to give them back?" he asked quietly. He couldn't help the surface of memories about bullies that stole his books.

"Sure, when we get to the classroom," Joey replied, starting to lead the way further down the hall to get to his locker.

/He called me cute!/ the hikari exclaimed brightly into his yami's mind.

//He's carrying your books.// Yami observed, the smile evident in his mental voice.

/I'm going to die of happiness./

//That's the best way to go. Aibou, I personally order you to spend the rest of your life with him.//

/Yam-/ Yugi started, before Joey's voice interrupted him.

"What are you saying to him?"

Yugi looked up at his best friend, or maybe his boyfriend. "What?" he asked.

"When Yami talks to ya, you get dis little look in yer eyes, like yer listenin' to somethin' we can't hear."

Yugi smiled. "He was just telling me to marry you."

It was Joey's turn to blush a deep red. "So, ah, he approves of me den?" It was his biggest fear in this relationship, the reaction of Yami. Yami was his friend also, and he didn't want to lose him as a friend, but he wanted the spirit's hikari to be more then his friend.

Yugi giggled, and Joey felt his heart melting. Yugi's giggle had the effect on him. Hell, Yugi had that effect on him. "Yes, he approves. Which in its self is surprising, because I really can't see him approving of any body else that I know."

//I don't approve of anybody else that you know,// Yami said sourly.

Yugi giggled again. "He says he wouldn't approve of anybody else that I know. He's very protective when it comes to that area."

Joey stopped at his locker, glancing at Yugi out of the corner of his eye. "Well den, I guess I'll have ta stick around fer a while."

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

After school, Joey stepped out of the building. It was sad that his apartment was in the opposite direction as Yugi's house. It would be nice to be able to walk home together.

He stepped onto the sidewalk, when he heard a voice behind him. "Joey! Wait up!"

He turned around to find himself looking into a pair of doe brown eyes. "Ryou? You usually leave ahead of me." The boy was always in a hurry to get home, and Joey was never in a hurry to go back to his house, so even though the only lived a few blocks apart, they very rarely ended up walking together.

The shorter boy shook his head slightly. "I got held up today by my teacher. It's boring walking him alone anyway. Would you mind some company?" He and Joey were never best friends, but although the blonde was most likely unaware, he was one of Ryou's closer friends.

Joey shook his head, a smile on his face. "No prob. So how's yer yami? We haven' heard much from him in a while." He knew that like Yami, the spirit they usually referred to as Bakura was able to diverge from his hikari, but he never seemed to be around when Ryou was with them.

Ryou smiled shyly. "He doesn't like to associate himself with many people. He usually only comes out of the ring at home."

"Well if it isn't the fag and the girl!" came a sneering voice. Joey whipped around to see Charlie and his usual gang. Well, maybe usual gang wasn't the right word, as the people in his gang changed daily, but there was always a gang. They were the ones that had managed to mark him a few days ago, but Joey was more prepared this time.

Despite what everybody seemed to think, Joey really didn't like getting into fights. If fact, they could sit there and taunt him as much as they wanted. He'd learned how to ignore that. But it was when they insulted Yugi, or any of his friends, that he lost his head. He couldn't help it.

"Get lost, Charlie," Joey said shortly. With Ryou here, he would hate for this to get messy. Alone, against Charlie and the others, he just might be able to take them. But at trying to protect Ryou into the mix, and he wasn't quite so sure of himself.

Charlie ignored the comment. "Are you cheating on him with the pretty boy? Where's your boyfriend now?"

"On his way home," Joey replied, suddenly very glad that Yugi lived in the other direction and usually rode the bus instead of walking.

Charlie didn't let the fact that he hadn't gotten the usual 'he's not my boyfriend' fase him. "Are you sure about that?" he questioned tauntingly.

Joey reached out and grabbed him by the collar, pulling him down so that their faces were inches away and Charlie's beady black eyes were forced to look up into his. For the moment, he forgot the rest of Charlie's thugs, he forgot the presence of Ryou behind him. "If you laid a hand on him, I will kill you."

Charlie smirked at him, and Joey was fighting everything he had not to beat the life out of him right there. He was pretty sure that he was bluffing, he had seen Yugi to the bus himself, but he had no way to be sure. If they had gotten to Yugi while Joey wasn't around… Suddenly the bully was pulled out of his grip and punch hard in the face.

"Yami!" Ryou exclaimed. Joey looked up at the dark eyes of Bakura, who was giving a death glare the boy sprawled out on the sidewalk. The world seemed to get a little bit darker, which Ryou and Joey recognized as the shadow magic. To the others, it just made this suddenly materialized threat seem greater.

"Did you touch him?" Bakura growled. Charlie groaned in an answer. Bakura grabbed him by the shirt, pulling him off the sidewalk. "DID YOU TOUCH HIM?" he repeated.

"No!" Charlie shouted, beginning to struggle in Bakura's grasp, panic in his eyes.

The tomb robber dropped him hard on the ground, and Charlie scrambled to his feet, running away with the rest of his gang.

"Yami," Ryou said softly, and Bakura's hard eyes softened. He walked over to Ryou and wrapped his arms around the smaller boys waist, pulling him close up against him.

"I'm sorry I lost my temper, koi," he murmured into Ryou's hair.

The white haired teen smiled, leaning back against Bakura. "I think that's one of the sweetest things you've ever done," he answered.

"Don't get me wrong, I still hate the pharaoh, but there's nothing wrong with his hikari." Ryou chuckled slightly, squeezing Bakura's hand before pulling himself out of the spirits arms.

"Why don' ya walk da rest of da way wit' us, Bakura?" Joey offered, picking up the bag he had dropped in all the confusion. He never got to see the yami, and now he was just a little bit curious as to the extent of his relationship with Ryou.

The millennium spirit looked at him hard for a moment before nodding slowly. They started to walk again, Bakura with his hand around Ryou's waist. "So," Joey started, "koi?" he asked, not looking over at Ryou because he didn't want to embarrass him anymore then necessary.

Ryou blushed, but Bakura just walked, pretending that he didn't hear them talking. "Hai," Ryou responded to Joey's one word question.

Joey nodded. It was actually kind of cute that they were together, and he was very glad that Ryou had somebody. The way that the boy never seemed to get very close to anybody worried him. Not that he wasn't friendly, he just never emotionally connected to them, except perhaps maybe Yugi. "Since when?"

"It's been, a while," Ryou answered, still blushing. He thought for a moment. "I guess you're the first to know about us."

"Why not tell us? It's not like we'd have a problem with it."

"Yes, but," Ryou started, looking at Bakura. "Well, it just never seemed important that anybody knew. Kura doesn't like to be around when my friends are, so it wasn't important."

Joey shrugged, accepting that for an answer. "So how does it work between you two, if ya don' mind me askin'. Between a yami an' hikari, I mean." He was curious, having know Yugi and Yami very well, as to what that would be like.

Ryou shifted uncomfortably. "He's my soul mate," he responded. "That's how it works." How could he explain to Joey what it was like to be connected to a person so deeply mentally that he needed to be connected physically too. "I don't know what else to tell you except that I love him with all that I am."

Out of the corner of his eye, Joey saw that Bakura actually smiled at that, and tightened his arm around his hikari a little. He'd never seen Bakura smile. He'd never seen Ryou glow with that much happiness. "Well, I'm glad you two have each other."

A thought occurred to him, and he frowned suddenly. "Wait, do ya think dat Yugi and Yami…" he trailed off, not wanting to finish the question.

Ryou shrugged. "I don't know, maybe, but then again, maybe not. I've never asked him. I know that he loves his yami, but that doesn't mean that they're lovers."

"Yugi deserves better then him," Bakura grumbled, causing Ryou to miss the shocked, pain filled look that had crossed Joey's face.

"Kura, why so protective over Yugi all the sudden?" Ryou asked, looking over his shoulder at his boyfriend curiously.

"Because he's a lot like you," the yami answered, kissing the back of Ryou's head and causing the hikari to roll his eyes.

"Sorry you two, but I gotta split," Joey mumbled, before taking off towards his house at a run.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Friday came quickly, and before Joey could even knock at the door, it was opened by a bouncing Yugi. "Hi!" the small teen greeted brightly, before running away from the door and out of the room, barefoot.

Yami walked over and opened the door the rest of the way so Joey could come in. He rolled his eyes. "Aibou, settle down!" He shouted, before giving Joey a sidelong glance. "I fear I gave him sugar. I am really very sorry. I had forgotten that you were coming."

Joey smiled. He'd been around Yugi while on a sugar induced high before. In fact, he thought it was so absolutely adorable that he often supplied the candy, just to watch the show. "Don' worry, he'll calm down at da theater." He also knew from experience that distraction was the best way to cure him.

Yugi ran back into the room, now with socks on. He looked at Yami and a mischievous glint entered his bright, otherwise innocent eyes. "FUCK!" he yelled, with a huge smile. "DAMMIT! SHIT!"

"Yugi, stop it!" Yami exclaimed, his crimson eyes going wide at the words.

"But you NEVER let me say bad words! And it's so funny to watch you get all huffy when I do!" Yugi said as he picked up his sneakers.

"I do not get huffy!" Yami replied indignantly, crossing his arms and glaring at his lighter half.

Yugi, who was attempting to tie his shoes, threw a sneaker across the room in frustration, where is smacked against the wall and fell to the carpeted floor. "I hate these fucking god damn shoes!"

"Yugi!" Yami cried, as Joey tried to control his laughter at how incredibly ridiculous it was to hear Yugi swear like that.

The hikari grinned at him. "See, huffy!" He retrieved his shoe and slipped his foot into it, before turning his attention to his boyfriend. "What are we seeing?"

"Somethin' scary," Joey replied quietly, his mood falling slightly when he remembered what he had learned just yesterday afternoon.

Yugi shivered, but grinned anyway. "Sounds good." He straightened from tying his shoe. "I'm ready!" He ran over to Yami and jumped on him, causing the spirit to fall backwards onto the floor, Yugi on top of him.

"See you soon, Yami," Yugi said, his grin never falling. He kissed Yami on the lips lightly, before crawling off of him and taking Joey's hand, pulling the blonde out of the room.

Yami sat up, watching the door close, and wondered mildly if Yugi should have done that in front of Joey.

Joey opened the passenger door for Yugi, watching with a sad smile as the boy bounced into the seat. 'He's too cute for his own good,' he thought. 'God, I'm so in love with him it's sad.'

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Yugi shrank back in his seat away from the creature on the screen. Joey squeezed his hand reassuringly, and the small teen smiled slightly, comforted for the moment.

Joey looked back at the screen, not really seeing the monster. 'So maybe he is with Yami. What does that exactly make me?' He glanced at Yugi out of the corner of his eye. He was so cute, sitting there in the chair, all huddled together, his hand locked tightly around Joey's. It felt so right to be like this, in fact, it would feel more right if Yugi was huddled up in his lap instead of that chair.

'Do I have to share him? I don't want to, I want him to be mine, and only. But, if that's the only way, I'll do it. I love him too much to let him go. Yami obviously doesn't mind, if he approves of me…'

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Joey once again walked Yugi to the door. His left arm was wrapped around the smaller teen's waist, his right hand holding Yugi's.

They reached the door, and Yugi turned to look up at him. "Thanks again for taking me Joey."

"It wasn' too scary, was it?" The blonde asked, real concern in his voice. He wouldn't be able to forgive himself if Yugi began to have nightmares because of him.

Yugi shook his head, a soft smile playing on his lips, and Joey was struck once more with how cute he was. He had a sudden desire to kiss him, but fought it. This was only the second date. It wouldn't be right. Giving both his waist and hand a squeeze, he let the small teen go.

"Are you doin' anything Saturday night?" Yugi shook his head in answer. "How about dinner an' a movie?" (Y/C/C: They have school on Saturday in Japan, just so you know. But they have Sunday off.)

Yugi nodded shyly. Unable to completely resist the overwhelming cuteness any longer, Joey bent down slightly and kissed him lightly on the cheek. Blushing bright red, he turned and started back towards the car without another word.

Yugi stared after him a moment, a small hand resting on his cheek, a silly smile on his face. But the door cracked open, and Yami hissed at him, snapping him to his senses. He fled in the door and into Yami's arms.

"It was just on the cheek, Aibou!" the dark spirit said as he held his light. He's watched the whole thing through the window, resisting the urge to peek through the link.

Yugi's silly smile had yet to disappear. "You don't understand Yami. He kissed me. Joey, my best friend, is officially my boyfriend." He pulled himself from the spirit's arms and threw himself onto the couch.

Yami raised an eyebrow. To him, that somehow didn't make and sense. Hadn't that fact already been established? "You mean he wasn't before?"

The Hikari shook his head. "No, we were just dating. This," he said, touching his cheek very lightly as if it was holy, "this shows that it means more then that to him."

Yami rolled his eyes. His hikari, while normally so perceptive, was blind when it came to himself. "I could have told you that. He still didn't really kiss you, did he?"

Yugi frowned, looking down at his shoes. "No, he didn't. I was kinda hoping that he would tonight too. He didn't let my hand go all night long."

"Was the movie scary?" he asked, bending down and picking his light up off the bed and throwing him over his shoulder.

Yugi shrugged, not at all fazed by being treated like a bag of potatoes. "The parts that I watched were. The rest of it I had my eyes closed or I was watching Joey think. He thinks a lot, now."

"At what point did you come down off your sugar high?"

Yugi giggled. "When the movie started." It was fun, being crazy like that. And it warmed him to know that Joey didn't mind he was crazy once in a while. Joey knew him better then anybody, beside Yami, and he still wanted to be with him.

When they had reached their room, and Yugi had become very quiet. "Yami?" he whispered as he changed for bed.

"Hmm?" the spirit asked, already under the covers and heading towards sleep.

"Why didn't he kiss me?"

Yami had seen this coming. He sat up and looked across the room at his light. "He did kiss you, Aibou." Yugi shook his head, and that was all that Yami needed to better understand what he meant. He sighed. "Did he pay for your ticket?" Yugi nodded. "Did he open doors for you? Did he hold your hand and walk you to the door?"

"Yes Yami, he did all of that, but he still didn't kiss me. I mean, maybe he doesn't want to. It might be a little weird for him." He shifted uncomfortably. He still doubted what he and Joey's relationship was going to become. True, maybe Joey wanted to be more then friends, but maybe not as close as Yugi was hoping for.

"Maybe," Yami acknowledged. Yugi wouldn't believe him if he flat out denied the possibility. "But I don't think that's it. This was your second date, right? Give it one more."

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Yugi stood up at his locker, books in hand, when suddenly two strong arms surrounded him and in the process, pulled the books out of his hands. Joey pulled Yugi up against him in a loose hug from behind, and a light pink blush and a soft smile graced Yugi's features.

"Hello Joey."

"Hmm," Joey answered as he buried his face in Yugi's hair and inhaled the scent of his shampoo. He'd never been this close to the teen, and he was going to enjoy it. Yugi giggled lightly, leaning back against him and bringing his hands up to cover Joey's on his books. His heart sped at the closeness, a rush of love for the blonde running strongly through him. How had he managed to keep his attraction at a mere crush for so long?

"Are you stealing my stuff again?"

"Yes," Joey answered easily. "Ready ta go?" At Yugi's nod, he shifted his position and started to lead him down the hall, Yugi's books in one hand, and Yugi's waist in the other.

They walked into the classroom, and their friends looked up. Joey blushed a light pink before slipping his hand off of Yugi.

/Oh./ He had thought that maybe because of Joey's actions he was ready to let everybody know.

//Maybe he's not ready, Hikari. Give him time.// Yami said soothingly. He could understand Joey's caution.

Ryou raised an eyebrow at Joey, who ignored the silent question. He walked over to Yugi's desk and sat down the boys book's, soon joined by Yugi himself and the rest of the group.

Yugi slipped into his seat, unable to pull the frown from his face. It shouldn't have bothered him but it did. He couldn't help but feel that maybe Joey was ashamed of him. He listened while Joey and Tristan fought over, well, something, and tried to look interested. But Tea wasn't to be fooled.

"Yugi, is something wrong?" she asked, causing every body to look over. It wasn't a phrase that you often heard.

"No!" he answered, just a little too quickly. "What would make you think that?" He was a horrible liar, and he knew as soon as the words left his mouth that the smarter ones would know it.

"He's fine-" Tristan started to say, but Joey elbowed him hard in the stomach before falling down on his knees beside Yugi's desk. (Y/C/C: Hikari Ykarzel: *is very proud that she just managed to call the moron stupid without actually saying it.*)

"Yug?" he asked quietly. He had a feeling that if something was wrong, it would have something to do with him.

He avoided Joey's eyes, not responding. Reaching out, Joey hooked a finger under Yugi's chin and turned his face to look at him. "What is it?" He was ultra aware of how close their faces were, and totally forgot that there were other people in the room. It was funny how Yugi had that effect on him. Making him omniscient and struck dumb at the same time.

Their face merely inches apart, Yugi found himself drowning in his honey eyes, and suddenly, it didn't seem so important anymore. Joey loved him, he could tell. All you had to do was look at the way Joey looked at him and you knew it. He smiled at his boyfriend. "Nothing," he said honestly. "I'm fine."

"Are ya sure?" Joey asked, letting his finger slowly caress the underside of Yugi's chin.

It made him shiver. It made his entire body heat. "Yes," he whispered.

"Just kiss him already!" Ryou exclaimed, causing Joey to snap out of his Yugi-induced daze, pull away from Yugi, and look over at the white haired interuption. They both blushed a deep red.

"I'm fine Joey, just a little tired," Yugi said pointedly, hoping to avoid that subject. If Joey wasn't ready, then Joey wasn't ready. He didn't have to like it, but he did have to deal with it.

"Ah, good, jus' checkin'." Joey went to his seat, and soon class started.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

Joey straightened his sweater nervously, standing in front of Yugi's door. He picked at imaginary deep green flint, rolling his shoulders and adjusting his hair. Raising a hand to the door, he knocked, but never even reached the second tap, the door opened so fast.

"I was wondering how long you were going to stand out there," Yami said, stepping back so Joey could come in. Joey blushed a deep red. "Yugi isn't ready yet, he can't decide what to wear. Why don't you go help him," he said, pushing the stunned boy towards the stairs before he had a chance to protest.

Unsure of what else to do, Joey climbed the steps to Yugi's bedroom and knocked lightly on the door.

"No Yami, I'm not ready!" came an indignant voice from inside.

"Yug?" the blonde asked. He would know right away who it was. He was the only one that called him Yug.

There was silence in the room. Suddenly the door opened Yugi appeared, wearing only a pair of sweat pants. "Joey?" he questioned, puzzled as to why he had come upstairs.

"Yami said ta come help you."

Yugi grinned. "Joey, for the next five minutes, you are not my boyfriend. Come here." He grabbed Joey's wrist and pulled him into the room. "I have a problem. I have a date tonight, and I don't know what to wear."

Joey smiled, deciding to play along. "Well Yug, my friend, dat is a prob. However, I doubt yer date would mind if ya showed up in what yer wearin' now," he said, eyes taking in Yugi's bare chest.

The small boy blushed, but grinned and waved a finger at Joey. "No, no, no. He might not care, but the other people at the restaurant will. If he wants to see me in this, he'll have to take me swimming. Now, help me pick."

Joey looked into the closet and spotted an outfit immediately. He grabbed the deep navy pants and blue shirt and handed it to Yugi.

The teen stared at if for a moment, then took it and grinned. "Thanks Joey." He ran into the bathroom to change, not bothering to shut the door tight, so he could still talk to Joey through the crack in the door, but had a little privacy. He trusted him enough to know he wouldn't look in at him. This was what they normally did when Joey used to spend the night.

"So, where are ya goin' on dis date, my best friend?" he asked innocently, raising his voice slightly so that Yugi would be able to hear him.

"Dinner and a movie," Yugi answered from inside the bathroom.

"And who are ya goin' wit'?"

"My best friend, aside from you of course, Joey," Yugi answered, walking back out, still shirtless, but now with a different pair of pants on.

He looked Joey straight in the eye before continuing. "He's amazing. He's very sweet, and really sexy, and he has this killer smile. Beautiful honey brown eyes. He makes me feel like I'm the most important thing in the world. And he always looks at me like I'm some kind of angel."

"Maybe dat's because you are one," Joey whispered, causing Yugi to blush. He broke their stare, turning and pulling his shirt over his head. He felt Joey's arms wrap around him just like they had earlier that morning. "And you are da most important thing in my world." The words were just above a whisper, like Joey felt he had to say them but was afraid of how Yugi would react to them.

Yugi's hands came up to rest on Joey's arms in response to the affectionate gesture. "Joey, I, I don't know what to say."

"Say dat I'm yer boyfriend again."

Yugi grinned, pushing closer against him, allowing their bodies to meld perfectly. "You can cease to be my best friend and return to being my boyfriend now."

"No," Joey said sternly, tightening his arms around Yugi just a little bit.

"No?" Did he not want to be Yugi's boyfriend? Panic started to raise in him, before Joey's next words calmed him.

"I'll be yer boyfriend," Joey whispered. "But only if I'm yer best friend too. I want you all ta myself." Those words caught in Joey's throat, because even as he said them, he knew it would never happen. There would always be Yami, and he couldn't come between those two, neither would be able to handle it.

"Then you can have me," Yugi whispered back, his voice cracking with emotion. "Always." And it was true. There wasn't a single person on this planet that he would rather be with forever.

Joey grinned suddenly, removing his arms until just his hands rested on Yugi's waist. He brought his mouth right to the littler one's ear. "We're gonna be late fer our reservations."

"We have reservations?" Yugi asked with surprise. He was expecting to just stop by the diner and pick up a burger on the way. But apparently Joey was intent on spoiling him as much as possible.

"Mmmhmm, so as much as I hate to, we have ta leave."

"Okay," he pulled himself out of Joey's arms and walked over to his mirror, where he pulled a comb through his hair. "Let's go." He softly took Joey's hand in his and started the way down the stairs.

Yami was waiting for them. When Yugi entered, he looked the boy up and down, and grinned. "You look wonderful, little one. You dress him well, Joey."

"You're vain, Yami," Yugi retorted, sticking his nose in the air and refraining from looking at Yami.

"I told you before, little love, I can't help that we're beautiful. Am I not right, Joey?" he asked, turning questioning ruby eyes on the blonde.

Joey ignored the pain in his chest that seeing the two interact caused for a moment. He liked Yami a lot, and he really couldn't blame him for loving Yugi. "He really has a point, Yug," he said quietly. Oh, how he wanted that little angel to himself. It ate him up inside, but there was nothing that could be done. He would never dream of asking Yugi to leave Yami for him. He should stop being selfish and accept what he got.

The boy huffed and glared. "Alright then, who's cuter, me or Yami?"

"You," both Joey and Yami said instantly, and Yami flashed Joey a brilliant smile that clearly stated he took no offence to it. Yugi rolled his eyes at the pair of them.

"We're gonna be late. Bye Yami." He walked over to give his dark half a hug, and Yami kissed his forehead softly.

"Have fun, little love."

Yugi grinned. "I will." He let Joey leave first, then stepped outside. Popping his head back inside the door, he winked at Yami. "Don't wait up."

"Yugi!" Yami shouted as the said boy pulled the door shut.

He broke into a fit of giggles as soon as they reached the car. "I've always wanted to say that. He doesn't really like the fact that I'm growing up. It's kinda funny to watch. At one point he's saying I should marry you, and at another he says that if you touch me he'll kill you. I think he's afraid I won't need him anymore."

"Dat's a reasonable fear," Joey said mildly, starting up the car and backing out of the driveway. He fought hard to keep all emotion out of his voice.

"But not true. I'll always need him, he's part of me. I couldn't survive without him."

"Well, den maybe ya should tell him dat." Joey kept his eyes on the road, cursing the irony that here he was, hopelessly in love with Yugi, and Yugi was asking him advise on how to deal with Yami. Bittersweet.

"So, where are we going that you had to make us reservations?" Yugi asked. Joey was so used to his random subject changes that it didn't even faze him.

"Dat little place right down da road from da theater."

"Oh, I've wanted to go there for a while! I never get to eat out. Grandpa doesn't like the noise, and Yami doesn't eat very often." He grumbled something about hearing aids and dark halves that Joey was sure would have been amusing if spoken louder.

"Well, I'll take ya to dinner more often den. It gets old afta a while though. Dad can't seem ta keep food in da house, so I eat out all da time."

Yugi grew quiet for a moment. "You know Joey, I don't like you living there with him," he said softly.

Joey shrugged uncomfortably. "It's not tha' bad. It's a little unclean, but what else can ya expect wit' jus' Dad and I?"

"I don't like him living with you. He makes me nervous." Yugi was watching Joey, his lavender eyes wide with genuine concern, but Joey wouldn't look at him. He kept his eyes unblinkingly on the road.

"Don' worry about it Yug. He just drinks. It could be a hell ov'a lot worse." Joey really didn't want to ruin their date with talk about his drunk father.

"Does he know?" Yugi asked, reaching out to lay a small hand on Joey's forearm.

'Oh, here it goes,' Joey thought to himself. "Know what?" he asked, playing dumb. He couldn't bring himself to look at his boyfriend, he kept his eyes unblinkingly on the road.

"About, us, about you."

"No, an' he's not gonna. Does yer grandfather know?" Joey wasn't sure why, but he felt the need to defend his act of keeping this secret. He couldn't tell his father. He couldn't.

Yugi nodded slowly. "He's away right now, but he called while we were at the movies, and Yami told him I was out on a date with you. He's known about me for as long as you have. He doesn't mind. He told Yami he thought you'd be good for me."

Joey glanced at him. He felt guilty that he had to keep such a beautiful thing as Yugi a secret. He wanted to scream from the roof tops how lucky he was, but he couldn't. "Well, my dad would mind, so he doesn' know."

"Oh…" And Yugi let the subject drop. He hadn't considered that Joey's father would object to their relationship.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

When they reached the restaurant, the waiter sat them in the corner booth, out of sight of everybody else. A fact that amused Yugi greatly, along with the way that the waiter pointedly ignored the fact that they were holding hands and how close together they sat. They didn't mind sitting in the corner, in fact they preferred it.

Joey took a sip of his water and cleared his throat nervously. He knew they had to talk about it, he couldn't ignore it forever. "Yug…"

Yugi looked up, his bright eyes shining in happiness. He loved being with Joey like this. Not having to hold anything back, because he was afraid it would seem to, gay. He'd gone to great lengths to make sure Joey never felt he was being hit on before. Not having to do that anymore made time with him so much more enjoyable. "Yeah?'

'How am I going to do this? I guess I should start with where I figured it out.' "Did ya know dat Ryou and Bakura were, involved?"

"Really?" Yugi smiled brightly. "That's great. I'd noticed how happy Ryou had been over the past few months. I'm really happy for him."

Joey nodded, staring at the table. "Yeah, well, I asked him how it worked between dem, bein' connected and all dat. He said dat dey were soul mates, an' dat was all dere was to it. And so I started thinkin'…" Joey blinked hard and looked up so he could look into Yugi's eyes. "Yugi, I won' deny I wish I could have you ta myself, but if sharin' ya wit' Yami is how it has ta be, I'll deal wit' it."

Yugi stared at him for a long moment, his mouth slightly open and his eyes shocked. Suddenly, he grinned and giggled. "Don't worry Joey, I'm all yours. Yami and I aren't like that."

Joey blinked. "You aren'?" he asked, feeling stupid.

Yugi shook his head, still smiling. "No Joey, we're not. How do I explain this? Um… Ryou and Bakura are different than Yami and I. Yami is my other half, he's part of me, he's closer then a brother, and in some ways, closer then a lover, but he could never be a lover. He's almost too close for that. I mean, I guess I could be with him, but think about it Joey." He grinned. "He's me, in a way, anything we did sexually would just be like some sick form of masturbation."

Joey choked on the water he was drinking. He coughed hard for a moment, clearing his throat. "I neva thought about it dat way. I didn' really think about it much at all. Afta da idea came ta me, I jus' accepted it as true. I neva really stopped ta think dat maybe da reason you two are so affectionate was jus' cause yer an affectionate person."

Yugi blushed slightly. "We talked about that. If it bothers you-"

"No, no Yugi, it's fine, I don' mind. Hell, I thought you were sleepin' wit' each otha an' I was gonna ta deal wit' it. I don' care dat yer close. Dat's jus' who you are."

Yugi sighed. "Good. I was worried about it for a while. Because, you know, he does sleep with me, like, sleep. And I asked him if I was cheating on you by doing that, because it didn't feel like I was, but it seemed like I should have been. He said that he didn't think I was, but if it felt like I was cheating, it didn't matter what I was doing, it was wrong. So I guess the person to ask would be you. Do you mind?"

Joey's head tilted sideways. "He holds you, doesn' he?" Yugi nodded, and Joey got a far away look in his eyes. "I'm not sure how I knew dat. No, it doesn' bother me. It seems kinda, normal, in a weird kinda way. Jus' like it seems normal fer you ta kiss him good bye, or fer you ta sit in his lap. Almos' like a younger brotha, but, not, it's closer den dat."

Yugi grinned. "Exactly. That's exactly it. I don't know, a relationship with Yami would be kinda boring. We would ALWAYS know, you know? We're so close, that the one would always know what the other was thinking. Besides, I love you, so it doesn't matter."

Joey blinked. Yugi could just say that so casually, it amazed him. And he knew that he meant it too. "I love you too, Yugi." He took the boys hand in his. Yugi moved over on the bench so he could sit up against his boyfriend. Joey let his hand go and instead put his arm around him.

"And Joey, I think it's really sweet that you love me enough that you would have shared me."

Joey shrugged, looking away with a blush. "Better part of you den none at all."

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

After leaving the restaurant, the pair walked the three blocks to the theater. When they sat down, Joey found that the seats bothered him. The chair arm between kept them apart, and it didn't feel right to be so separated from him.

The movie started and Yugi cuddled up against him, resting his head on Joey's shoulder. Joey smiled at him, relaxing, but still cursing that damn arm.

Yugi seemed to be thinking along the same lines. About thirty minutes into the movie, he slid out of his seat and into Joey's lap. Joey grinned, wrapping his arms around him and adjusting his position to make them both comfortable. The people to the right of Yugi's empty seat stared, while the girl to Joey's left 'aww'ed before returning her attention to the movie. That made Joey smile. It was nice to know they were cute together.

He found it much harder to concentrate on the movie now, being distracted by things like the smell of Yugi's hair and how soft his skin was. "I love you," he whispered suddenly.

Yugi blinked, turning his head to look and Joey and make sure he was okay. "I love you too Joey."

"I just thought you needed to be told again."

Yugi grinned at him. "You're so cute," arching his body slightly, he pecked Joey on the cheek, before turning back to the screen and settling down once more.

:-* KISS *-: :-* KISS *-:

When the movie was over and they exited the theater, it was understood that neither was ready to go home. So without question from either, they found themselves walking toward the park, bodies close together.

Even at this late hour the park was full of people. Couples, groups of friends, a few people still walking their animals. The street lamps provided enough light for people to see, and the bright moon helped. The pair found an empty bench and sat down on it, Joey sideways and Yugi in his lap.

"Hey Joey?"

"Hmm?" the blonde answered, his eyes closed as he rested his cheek on Yugi's head, wanting never to let this angel out of his arms.

"How long have you liked me?"

Joey chuckled lightly, causing Yugi to shake from the vibrations. "I've liked you fer years, Yug, though I doubt that's what you mean. Truth be told, I never really thought about it. In a way, it just grew. I liked you when our friendship started, and as that friendship progressed, I grew to love you, to the point where I was in love with you. I could ask you the same thing."

Yugi giggled. "Since before we were friends I used to think you had a cute ass." Joey shook his head slightly, hugging Yugi tighter. "I've had a crush on you for years. I'm pretty sure I was in love with you then too, but I had no idea you would be interested in me, and I didn't want to risk our friendship, so I suppressed the feeling." Joey could hear the grin in his voice. "But the moment you asked me out, I felt it hard."

"Joey! Yugi!" came a bright cry. They looked up to see Ryou, along with Tea and Tristan, and even Bakura was following behind the group. The four walked over to their friends, Joey turning so somebody else could sit down. Tea took the seat, Ryou and Tristan sitting on the pavement, while Bakura continued to hover in the background.

"Where's Yami, Yugi?" Tristan asked.

"Home," Yugi murmured, his eyes shut as he buried his face in Joey's chest. He felt so safe here, he was completely content to curl up and sleep.

"It's good that he gives you two some time alone," Tea said, pulling her legs up so she was sitting cross-legged.

Joey was surprised, nobody had said a word about the affectionate way they were sitting, and here Tea was talking about them getting alone time. They acted as if they had known about them being 'together' for a long time. Which, he reasoned, was very possible. As long as they knew and didn't mind, he didn't mind that they knew.

"Did you convince the embodiment of darkness to emerge from the depths of hell for a while?" Joey jokingly asked Ryou, who grinned brightly at him.

"Yeah, after talking to you I realized he needed to get out more. It's not a good thing for me to be the only person he has contact with." The light haired hikari didn't even look at his Yami, who didn't take well to being ignored.

"I'm standing right here," Bakura growled.

"Well it isn't!" Ryou retorted, his smile never failing, still not turning to look at the fiend that stood behind them.

Yugi cracked open an eye and then followed it with another. He pulled away from Joey slightly so he could sit up a little more, knowing that if he didn't he'd fall asleep. In response to losing some of their contact, Joey kissed the top of his head. If any of them saw it, they didn't comment on it.

"You know," Yugi started, "my yami's not going to be happy to hear you two are together. He'll probably throw a huge fit about how you are too good for him, Ryou."

"I'm standing right here!" Bakura repeated, trying to get a little attention, but they all continued ignoring him.

Ryou shrugged. "I don't see how I can be too good for a part of myself. That doesn't make very much sense. Those two just don't get along very well. Maybe if we forced them to spend time with each other they could become friends."

Bakura moved over to stand between Ryou and the bench, forcing his hikari to look at him. "I'm standing right here! What's the point of me coming out of the damn ring if you are all going to sit there and talk like I can't hear you?"

"So I can check you out all night?" Ryou offered, reaching up and pulling Bakura to the ground. Once his yami had his bottom firmly on the pavement, Ryou wasted no time crawling into his lap and began kissing him lightly under the chin.

"I think Bakura's getting cranky," Joey observed, attempting not to laugh at the site of the dark and evil tomb robber being sat on and butterfly kissed.

Ryou's eyes sparkled. He stopped kissing and pulled away slightly, so he could look at Bakura in the eyes. "Kura, are you ready for bedtime?"

"Does it consist of you naked up against me?" he growled under his breath.

Ryou smirked. "It could…"

"Then let's go home," he ordered, not waiting for Ryou to get off him, just standing and picking him up with him.

Tea stood up off the bench. "I should be going anyway. See you guys at school!" she said, waving her goodbye to her friends.

Within moments, everybody had departed, leaving Joey and Yugi alone once more. Yugi let out a happy sigh. "They don't care, Joey." He couldn't be more relieved. He knew that they wouldn't, but Joey had seemed to be so worried about reactions of others. It was good to know they wouldn't have to live a lie.

"Hmm," Joey responded, pulling Yugi closer again. He was so small and light that was easy to cradle him in his arms. He nuzzled the side of the smaller teen's face, his entire world reducing to the perfection that he held.

Yugi shifted his head slightly, looking up into Joey's golden honey eyes. The taller teen stared back down at him, finding himself drowning in the hikari's pools of lavender again. Acting on instinct, he started to lean down. Yugi's eyes slipped shut. Joey paused, his face only inches away from his love's. Gathering his confidence, he closed the distance, capturing Yugi's top lip lightly between his in a soft kiss. Yugi's lips tightened slightly in response, kissing Joey back.

The smaller of the two reached up and snaked an arm around his neck to hold him in place, indicating he didn't want this to end right away.

Joey parted his lips just enough to allow his tongue to slip out and run across Yugi's lips. His silent request was granted as the mouth below his was opened. Joey's tongue entered slowly, slipping past the teen's lips and then past his teeth. He kissed him slowly, softly, timidly.

Yugi responded in much the same matter, allowing Joey to dominate but still kissing him back. His hand slipped from Joey's neck to the back of his head, pulling him closer and in turn causing the blonde to kiss him deeper.

Gentle and passionate, the kiss lasted several long moments more, before Joey started to pull away. Their lips fell apart slowly, and their eyes opened. Joey pulled his face back a few inches, meeting Yugi's bright eyes.

The boy smiled softly at him, removing his hand from the back of his head, and caressing with the backs of his fingers down Joey's face and neck before returning it to his own lap. "I love you," he whispered.

Joey just stared at him, wanting to say it in return, but unable to find his voice to do so. "Don't leave me," he finally managed, but only at just above a whisper.

"Wouldn't dream of it," Yugi answered, leaning his head against Joey's chest and snuggling close again.

Yugi wasn't sure how long they sat there together, enjoying the intense simplicity of just being with each other. All he knew was when they finally did get up and walk slowly back to the car the park was empty and every window was dark.

They drove in silence, having nothing that needed to be said. As he always did, Joey walked Yugi to the door.

"Your dad's not going to be upset you're home so late, will he?" Yugi asked with concern. He almost wished the answer was yes, then he could have Joey spend the night and deal with his father in the morning. He didn't like being away from the blonde. And though he loved his yami very much, he couldn't help but wonder what it would be like to sleep wrapped up in those arms.

Joey shrugged. "He won't notice. I tend to say out a lot."

Yugi blushed, looking at his feet. "Do you want to come over tomorrow? We can just hang out here." They hadn't gone to each others houses for any period of time since they started dating. It would mean something so different now, but he didn't want to have to give up that quality time together. He didn't want to lose anything that they had as just friends, he only wanted to add to it.

Joey grinned. "I'd love to." He glanced at his watch. "It's three in the morning now though, so don't expect me here early."

Yugi grinned. "Alright."

"I love you, Yugi," he whispered softly, making sure that the boy knew it through his eyes. He felt the need to say it all the time, to remind this angel how loved he was.

"I love you too Joey." Standing up on his tiptoes, he kissed him lightly on the lips. "Now go home, get some sleep, and I'll see you tomorrow."

"Good night."

"Night Joey."

When he opened the door, Yugi wasn't surprised to find Yami sitting in the chair across the room staring at the door, his arms crossed. If Yugi hadn't seen the curtains move as the car pulled in, he would have believe the spirit had been sitting there all night. "Do you know what time it is?" Yami's voice sounded could, but Yugi could hear past that, and it never fooled him.

"Three," he answered easily, suddenly glad that Joey had checked.

"Do you know what your grandfather would say if he knew you were coming home at three in the morning?"

"He would say 'Did you have fun Yugi?'."

Yami paused, realizing that was most likely exactly what he would say. Yugi's grandfather knew basically how their bond worked, and if Yami was home, he would be confident that Yami would know if Yugi was in trouble. "Well, did you?" he asked, not standing and not uncrossing his arms. He wasn't ready to drop the angry façade yet.

Yugi grinned. "It was wonderful. We went to dinner at this fancy place, then saw this really sweet movie, then just sat in the park for hours."

"Did he kiss you?" Yami asked, his curiosity getting the better of him as he stood and crossed the room.

Yugi nodded, a sleepy smile on his face.

"And? What was it like?"

"It was perfect."

Y/C/C: Hikari Ykarzel: O.O"" Thirty four pages… And to think it started out with the idea of Yami teaching Yugi how to kiss… There should be a sequel if I ever get around to it. Can you guess what it's about? My yami isn't here, she's having identity problems. Sad, in the time it took me to write this, she and Az got together, had a shit load of sex, and broke up. Well, they didn't really break up, it's hard to explain. They are just no longer seeing each other. Now, I am very very very sick. This story sucked the first time around, was just a little better the second, and finally after my third time of rereading it and changing almost every word, you got what you read. And, since I am sick and have practically rewritten this three times, I don't feel like reading it for errors. So, get over them. I can't breathe… shit. It'll stop in a minute. I just heard daddy go to bed, so now I can sneak online and post. Don't you all love me?? Woah, lap top just started making scary noises… Anybody know if it's okay to leave these things on for days at a time?