Behold, the Dreaded Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh, Pegasus, or anyone else. Summary: After losing the Millennium Eye, Pegasus decides to try making amends. Can he go through with it, and even so, how will Yugi and the gang react to a seemingly reformed Pegasus?

*****
New Decisions

By Kabuki

April 2003
*****
I listened to the lapping of the waves far, far down below my window. The surf, endlessly pounding away at the sandy beaches, would perhaps finally overcome the small island if given the time. A thoroughly depressing thought, considering how much time and effort he'd put into the landscaping, the trinkets, and the castle itself.

The Eye, the Eye, my kingdom for the Eye. It had been there so long, so soon after Cecelia's . . . passing. He'd grown accustomed to the voices, the migraines, the dizziness and the pressure of thoughts, other people's thoughts, clanging about in his head. Now, there was only silence.

"Here we go" The silver-haired man pressed a plush pillow to his face, wrapping his arms around it tightly, determined this time. The first few moments were alright, but then his lungs began to quiver, then spasm. His head ached, and an extreme dizziness took control. "Patience. You've got to hold on just a while more. Just a while more." His arms began to shake, so he gripped the pillow tighter. His lungs were burning, but he had to last. He had to make it work this time. What would he do if it didn't work? There was nothing else except death, or so he thought. His arms finally weakened at the same moment his lungs nearly exploded, leaving him gulping the air in great gasps. A few moments later he was laying flat on his back, the ceiling once again clearly focused. "Damn."

He lifted the pillow again and pressed it experimentally to his face, holding it, then lifting it again. "Down, hold, lift, repeat." The pillow had collaborated with his own hands to betray. Somehow, the safety catch, the animal part of him that truly didn't want to die, just wouldn't allow any self-smothering.

"Down, hold, lift, repeat . . ."

He sat up suddenly, tossing the pillow across the room, and cradled his head in his hands. The pillow collided with something, toppled it, smashed it. Again it had betrayed.

A knock at the door, then the hesitant voice of Croquet, "Sir? Are you-"

"Leave me!"

"But it's been a whole week, Mister Pegasus, sir, and the board members are getting restless."

Pegasus growled, his remaining eye furiously contracted. "I said, LEAVE!"

"A thousand apologies, sir!" Click, the door closed, and Pegasus collapsed back to count the ceiling tiles. He knew there were exactly two thousand six hundred and eighty-two of them, but he counted anyway. It was something to distract, anyway. Something to take his mind off the pain of loss. He felt for the Eye again, but felt no cool metal. Only his own tender flesh.

But back to the tiles. They were much simpler to ponder.

One, two, three . . .

He woke again sometime later. The sun had risen, and with a hiss he threw his last remaining pillow at the window shade. As though that would help. He blinked slowly, savoring the sensation, the feel of the muscle movement. He wanted a comic, but somehow didn't feel up to reading it. His patience had been thin lately. Strange considering how long he'd been cooped up in his room. He rubbed his temples and glanced around, his gaze settling on the desk by the window. The vase was gone, surely that had been what he'd smashed last night but the mess had already been removed, picked up and cleaned, as though the vase had never been there. In its place was a covered silver platter, a glass of orange juice, and his medication. Painkillers, antibiotics, and vitamins to compensate for his poor eating habits as of late.

He hated medication. After sampling the juice and finding it palatable (freshly squeezed, no pulp), he carried the pills to the bathroom where he flushed them down the toilet. At one time he might have laughed as they went round and round, but he just didn't feel up to it.

Pegasus carefully showered, dressed, combed his hair from his face, tied the silver mane with a black ribbon, and studied the gaping hole in his face where the Millennium Eye had been. He ran his pale fingers over the hole, morbid curiosity driving him to poke at the caked and scabby skin until it hurt. He stood up straight and stared a moment longer at the strange curiosity in the mirror. "Ghastly," he muttered, and let his hair fall over the wound. Who would look upon him now without shrieking, he wondered, if they knew what lay behind the pale curtain of hair?

He sat down at his desk with his wet silver hair about his shoulders and stared blankly out the picture window. For so long there had been activity. The duelists had peopled his cold hermitage with their hopes, their dreams, their talk and gossip. Despite his interests in the Millennium Pieces, he'd been quietly grateful for their company. Now, though, the boats were gone, the beaches were empty. The castle was a tomb once more, an edifice built for a dead woman. In this case, as in the rituals of ancient Egypt, he had buried himself with his beloved, doomed to wander the halls of his tomb until his death.

A realization set in that he'd been trying to ignore for a week: he would never restore his beloved Cecelia. Despite his best intentions, he had failed.

He waited for some emotion to come, some wail of grief or fury at his own incompetence; but he remained blank, simply staring out over the water. Something deep inside shifted, yes, but nothing like the great beast which had once torn his mind apart with thoughts of revenge, of desire, of longing. Something was different. Thoughts of Cecelia made him sad, true, but did not open the vast floodgate of emotion as they once had. As he stared out the window, he wondered what was happening in the world. People, he thought, had become little more than disposable pawns in the past six years since his beloved had passed. Now he craved company. He looked at the room, his own plush bedroom, and saw a chamber devoid of life. Empty. Peopled by mere things.

He desired the Eye, the feel of it, the power. He was sure he could find that brat Bakura . . . but then he thought of Cecelia and paused. The damn Eye, was it more important? When had the Millennium Items and the temptation of raw power taken priority? He looked at his hands, their perfectly manicured appearance unsettling. When he'd painted, his hands had always been dirty. Now they seemed sterile somehow. How long since he'd held brush to canvas, the scent of turpentine in his clothes and paint caked beneath his fingernails?

He honestly couldn't remember.

Pegasus stood, gazing out over the water and for the first time, he felt drawn to those from whom he had so carefully isolated himself. He thought of leaving right then, of summoning the helicopter and flying into the city to mingle, to enjoy, to live; but his mind, ever planning and self- conscious, replayed the events of late. The stealing of souls, lying, cheating, and the pure pleasure he'd taken in the pain of others until . . . until a certain fair-haired Bakura-boy had bested him at a duel. Beaten when he'd least expected to be beaten. And then . well, could anyone say he'd used the Eye wisely? Now that he thought about it, he'd treated the power quite childishly, lording his superiority over others. Further isolating himself. He thought of Yugi Mutoh, a child so naive and innocent - so like he'd once been before death and the harsh realities of life had exposed him to the world. And that arrogant fool Seto Kaiba, so sure of himself even in failure, so determined to save the one person he loved more than himself. It seems sheer hypocrisy to hate anyone with such similar goals and ideals.

Pegasus sighed. He might have formed bonds with those boys, might have enjoyed their conversation and, for the first time in a long time, found himself appreciated for his wit, his knowledge of things besides duel monsters, and his natural talent. It was still so tempting to go to them, to speak with them. He wanted to ask if young Yugi had been cursed as he had been by the Millennium Item. If the voices in his head whispered things in the night he daren't tell anyone. But after what he'd done . . . they would reject him, of course, as everyone but Cecelia had always rejected him.

He opened the double doors and stepped onto the balcony, the wind rejuvenating him, blowing away his heavy thoughts. "Well, dear boy, what will you do now? Are you a man, or a mouse?"

The spreading sunlight glinted in his hair as Pegasus gazed about the perimeter and, spotting the helicopter pilot strolling through the jungle at the edge of the beach, he cupped his hands and cried out, "Hey! Mister helicopter-pilot-guy! I've a job for you, indolent man!"
This is my first Yugioh fic, so please review. /\_~