Chapter One: Poison Rush

"Hello? Kaibacorp, this is his secretary," Mai Valentine answered cheerfully, one day in early spring.

"No, he doesn't want to buy mops, trust me sweetheart," she cooed through the phone. "Bu-bye now!"

Mai leaned back in her chair and swirled around happily. It was a day in spring, and she was greatly enjoying her new position as Seto Kaiba's secretary.

"So what if the pool thing didn't turn out," she said, remembering her old spring job. "This is the life!"

A buzzer rang on her desk.

"Yeah?"

"Mai, I'd like to speak to you in my office," Seto Kaiba's voice came through the speaker.

"Sure, gotcha!" Mai said springing up and trotting into the office. "You wanted to see me?"
"Yes," Kaiba said, swiveling his chair around so he could see Mai. "Now Mai, I
have to talk frankly to you."

"Mm," Mai said, looking at her nails.

"Since you've arrived a week ago, I've been getting less and less business and my employees are beginning to get annoyed with you," he said to her, sternly.

"And?"

"And I believe it is for the good of the company to let you go," he finished.

"Let me...go?" Mai asked, stunned. "But you can't! I need a job! I have to..."

"You should have thought about that before you tried to flirt with one of the biggest customers of this company, Mai," Kaiba pointed out.

Mai stamped her foot and shook her fist.

"You...you...I was just trying to be...I was NOT flirting...I..." Mai stammered angrily.

"Good bye, Mai, however, you are welcome to my dueling competition this evening," Kaiba added, giving her a flyer. "It'll be starting in an half-and hour."

"No thanks," Mai said, balling up the paper and tossing it in the waste basket.

"Good bye!"

"Good bye," Kaiba said, turning away from her.

Mai stomped out of the office and leaned against the door. Fired again?

"What am I going to do?" she thought miserably. "That jerk Kaiba," she mumbled as she headed for the door.

Suddenly, the phone on her old desk rang. She slouched over to it and snatched the phone up off the hook.

"Yeah, what?" she snapped answering it.

"Is Mister Kaiba going to be working late tonight?" A strange voice asked.

"Yeah, dueling competition," Mai said shortly.

"And...does he have a large security?" The voice inquired.

"No, why do you care?" Mai snapped tapping her nails angrily.

"No reason."

The line went dead.

Mai slammed the phone down.

"Good bye!" she yelled and slammed the door, causing the pictures on the wall to rattle.

Twenty minutes later, Yugi, Duke, Tristan, Tea, Joey, and Serenity had arrived to play Duel Monsters. Tea, Serenity, and Mokuba were upstairs watching the news and Duke and Yugi were milling around in Kaiba's office, waiting for others to arrive.

"Where are they?" Kaiba thought, typing on his lap top.

"I'm going to go to the restroom," Triston said leaving the room.

"I'm going to pick up a pizza," Joey said, following Triston out the door.

"Want to...DDM duel?" Duke asked, pulling a set out of his bag.

"Sure," Yugi agreed and the two set up the board.

They were all set up to play and had just chosen colors when suddenly, the door
flew open and three men with long slender guns entered the room!

"What the..." Yugi and Duke cried, jumping up and spilling the Dungeon Dice pieces everywhere.
"Those are..." Kaiba muttered, staring at the vaguely familiar guns. "What do you want?"

The men didn't answer.

"Get 'em!" he yelled, and they began to shoot at them all.

Darts flew everywhere, smashing picture frames and knocking things down. Kaiba tried to dodge them, but two hit his arm. He yanked them out and ran toward the open door.

"Come on, Yugi, Duke!" he called to the others, who quickly followed.

A dart flew past Duke's head and got stuck in the door as he ducked it. Duke paused for a half-second to yank it out before running after the other two.
As they ran down the hall, they spotted Triston walking slowly at the end of the corridor.

"What's...up?" Triston asked, looking at the three speeding down the hallway.

"No time! Follow us!" Duke yelled.

The four ran to the end of the hallway and got into an elevator. Triston jammed down the bottom button and sighed. As the elevator started to descend, Kaiba fell back against the wall of the elevator, clutching his arm. He felt dizzy.

"Are you all right?" Yugi asked.

"Poison darts," Kaiba mumbled. "Not much time left."

"Poison?" Yugi cried.

Duke pulled out his hair-holder and tied it tightly around Kaiba's arm.

"That 'ought to slow it down," he explained as they hit the bottom floor.

The four got out of the elevator and looked around. Everything looked fairly normal on the bottom floor of Kaibacorp.

"We've got to get out of here," Duke said hurriedly, pointing to the glass doors.

"Wait!" Kaiba gasped, leaning against the wall for support. "Mokuba, he's still up there!"

"Tea and Serenity too!" Yugi cried, rushing back toward the elevator.

"I'll go help them," Triston said bravely. "You too need to get Kaiba to a hospital, fast!"

"Um," Yugi nodded and they split up.

Duke, Kaiba, and Yugi ran outside and looked around. Cars were going by in the evening traffic and people were walking down the streets like normal.

"There's a car!" Duke cried, pointing to a black car parked in the parking lot and the three hurried over to it.

Yugi hopped in the front seat and Kaiba and Duke got in the back.

"Oh no, the keys!" Yugi exclaimed.

Kaiba reached into his pocket, pulled out a set, and weakly tossed them to Yugi, who promptly put them in the ignition.

"Can you actually drive, Yugi?" Duke asked as he buckled up.

"Uh....I've been to driver's education...." Yugi muttered.

Duke started to sweat as Yugi tried to get his feet to reach the pedals.

"Look, I'll do it," Duke said, starting to unbuckled again.

"No! It's take to long and we have to hurry!" Yugi protested.

"This is where you take over Yami," Yugi said, letting out the spirit of the Millennium Puzzle. "I'm too short for the pedals."

"Uh...okay..." Yami muttered looking at all the gears.

"Just push that pedal!" Duke cried leaning over and pointing to the gas pedal.

"Like this?" Yami inquired, pushing down the pedal as far as it would go.

He soon realized what a mistake that was. The car sped off, and the three caught a whiff of burning rubber as they roared down the street.

Meanwhile, Mai was grumpily driving her convertible down the street when Yami's car zoomed by her. She slammed on the brakes and skid a few feet before coming to a stop. She loosened her seat belt as it cut across her neck from the sharp
stop.

"What the..." she muttered looking at the car and the people in it, then gasped.

"That hair-do! I'd recognize it anywhere! It's Yugi!"

She geared up the car again and sped off into the night after them.

Duke yelled another turn to Yami and they narrowly missed the corner of the sidewalk as the sped round the curve. Kaiba was staring out the window.

"Everything's so blurry," he thought dimly.

The lights from the buildings seemed to smear together so he couldn't tell one thing from another. It was all whirling together....and then there were no lights at all.

"Uh oh," Duke cried.

"WHAT?!" Yami cried hysterically as he tried to avoid a pedestrian in the road, causing the vehicle to turn nearly sideways.

"You'd better step on it, Yugi," he said leaning into the front seat. "Kaiba's already unconscious."

He looked out the back window at a flashing light. There were a few cars behind them advancing on them.

"Oh, and someone's on our tail...a little blue car and...THE COPS!" Duke cried jumping a foot. "Hurry up!"

"But I can't run away from the law!" Yami exclaimed.

"YUGI!" Duke shouted.

The sound of the police siren wailed in both their ears, until Yami, feeling too guilty to continue, slammed on the breaks. The smell of burning rubber filled the car once more. A few minutes later, a chubby police officer waddled over to the car.

"License please," he said bordely whipping out a pad of paper.

"What's that?" Yami asked and Duke *anime fainted in the backseat.

"Please sir!" Duke pleaded. "Our friend has been poisoned! We need to get help!"

The officer looked in the backseat, and then opened the door. He shoved Yami over and sat down.

"Okay, let's go!"

Back at Kaibacorp, Triston and Mokuba were running down the hallway together.

"Ni-sama is hurt?" Mokuba asked, worriedly. "Where is he?"

"Uh...Yugi and Duke have taken him to the hospital," Triston said quickly, trying to think of an escape route at the same time. "He'll be fine!" he added quickly.

In a room down the hall, Tea was boredly watching the news with Serenity.
"...and a chase has started downtown, with a law enforcement officer leading the way in an unidentified black car, closely followed by a teen in a blue convertible and...that boy better get out of the road!"
"Is that..." Tea muttered looking closely at the boy crossing the street with a pizza box in hand.

"ONICHA!!!" Serenity screamed running over to the television as Joey stopped in the middle of the road as Mai's convertible approached.

At the same moment, Triston barged in the room, his jacket torn from an encounter with the invaders, with Mokuba behind him.

"Hurry!" Mokuba cried.

"We need to go!...Is that Joey?" Triston asked staring at the screen.

Joey's arms flew up and the pizza splattered on Mai's windshield as she slammed on her brakes. Joey scrambled out of the road as she started up the windshield wipers, sloshing the pizza in Joey's face.

Then she took off down the road again.

"That was close," Triston sighed, wiping his forehead in relief. "But we've got to get out of here! This building is under attack by..."

Tea shrieked and pointed behind him. Triston never got to see who was there; everything went black as someone slammed a gun down on his head.

Meanwhile, Yugi and Duke had finally reached the hospital, and thankfully all alive and in one piece. Inside, Kaiba was lying in bed, a nurse examining the dart marks on his arm while a doctor was talking hurriedly to Duke and Yugi.

"So what exactly happened here?" The doctor asked Yugi.

"Well, we were ambushed by some gang or something, and they had poison dart guns," Duke explained.

"And one hit him," Yugi finished.

"I see," The doctor replied. "And did either of you happen to get a sample of the darts?"

Yugi bit his lip as Duke began fishing through his pockets.

"It would make things a lot easier, and faster," The doctor added, looking over at Kaiba. "Some poisons take less than 30 minutes to take full effect."

"We don't have one," Yugi admitted, looking at the ground.

"Yes we do!" Duke remarked, producing the dart he'd picked up on the way out. "Lucky I picked this thing up."

"Good!" The doctor said taking it. "We'll get this analyzed and find an antidote.

He hurried out of the room, leaving Yugi (Yami had gone back into the puzzle) and Duke alone with Kaiba and the nurse.

The next few tense minutes passed quickly, and with each one Yugi and Duke became more and more nervous.

"What happens if we were too late?" Yugi thought looking out the window, remembering about what the doctor had said about poisons.

It had been at least twenty minutes already, if not more. Kaiba himself had said there wasn't much time...

He forced the thought out of his mind. "Hurry," he thought.

A few more minutes later, the doctor returned.

Yugi and Duke looked up, expectantly.

"I've identified the poison," he said happily holding up a syringe. "And found the antidote."

"Whew," Yugi thought, sighing with relieve as the nurse gave Kaiba the injection.

"Will he be okay?" Duke asked as the doctor began writing up a report.

The doctor nodded.

"Yes, that antidote should take effect right away," he said as the nurse began to bandage up the dart wounds.

A second later, the door flew open again.

Mai burst inside, panting for breath. She leaned against the door for a second in which everyone stared at her as she caught her breath.

"Hey guys! I saw you speeding down the street...what the heck is going on?" she asked, noticing Kaiba.

"Well, Kaiabcorp was under attack..." Yugi began.

"Really?"

"...and Kaiba got hit with a..." Duke started, but cut off by a moan behind him.

"Ohh," Kaiba moaned, opening his eyes. "What...happened?" he asked groggily, trying to sit up.

"Just take it easy," Yugi said reassuringly. "Everything's fine now."

Kaiba looked up at the ceiling for a second, trying to recall what he was doing there, in bed.

"Mokuba," Kaiba whispered. "Mokuba! Where is he?" he asked sitting up.

"Back at...Kaibacorp!" Duke cried. "With Tea and Serenity!"

"We've got to go back," Kaiba muttered, trying to get out of bed.

"Wait!" The nurse cried. "You're not in any condition to be leaving anytime soon!"

"I have to," Kaiba replied, staggering out of bed and grabbing his jacket, which was lying on a chair. "I've got to find Mokuba."

"And we've got to find Tea, and make sure she and the others are okay!" Yugi cried following Kaiba, who kept stumbling as he walked, to the door.

"He sure recovers quickly," The doctor remarked.

"Look after him, will you?" The nurse told Duke as he turned to follow the others, still looking concerned.

"Sure!" Duke said with a wink as he followed Mai, who looked very clueless, outside.

The four hurried out of the hospital and toward Kaibacorp, hoping that they weren't already too late to help their friends...