PI: Here is the fifth contribution to my series, "Filling the Void." I hadn't originally planned on doing Jounouchi, but he just kept whispering his story in my ear, over and over, so I just had to type it out. Sorry for the loooong delay, but now that school has started, it'll take awhile for things to get done.

Disclaimer: I don't own Yugioh.

Boy in a Dog Suit By: Poison Ivy

--The following is an excerpt from police surveillance tapes--

A boy is sitting at the table, his face buried in his hands. It was a typical interrogation room, one sparse light bulb hanging from the ceiling, framing a table and chairs in its light. Two men hovered around the boy, setting up recording equipment. Then they sit, waiting for the boy to look up.

After a few minutes of silence, one of the men sighed and tapped the boy on the shoulder. He looked up with tears glistening in his eyes, threatening to spill.

"Why don't you just talk, Jounouchi?" the man asked gently in a soothing voice. "We're not here to judge."

The boy nodded in response.

The other man pressed a button on the tape recorder. "State your full name for the record." His voice is gruff, and he doesn't seem to be able to say the word 'please'.

"J-Jounouchi Katsuya." The boy's voice is hesitant with held back grief.

The first man nods at him to begin.

"Where should I start?" Jounouchi asks.

"Wherever you want."

The boy clears his throat and opens his mouth.

--The following is an excerpt from the recorded cassettes of Jounouchi Katsuya's interrogation--

I never meant to do it. But maybe that's the story of my life, huh?

*short pause*

Oh. You want the full story, doncha?


Me and my friends, we're a groups. A unit. Kinda like a clique, you know? Everyone has his or her place.

There's the leader, Yuugi. He's the one that's always lookin' out fer us, the one that makes the decisions. Or, you know, Yami kinda is too. But that's getting off topic. Yuugi's always perfectly level, and the one in charge.

Anzu's the mother hen. She's the one worrying when one of us is late to an outing, and the one most upset when we fight, even when she's not involved.

There's Honda. He's the quiet clown, kinda like my sidekick. His jokes are in line with mine, and he always goes along with the majority. Anytime he comes up with something original, we ignore it. because, you know, it's not like him.

Ryou is the outsider. The quiet studious one with the mysterious home life. he doesn't show up often at parties, but we expect that.


Then there's me. Yuugi's faithful sidekick. The class clown, and the guy that's just a few cards short of playing with a full deck. The guy that's always getting into trouble, and needs Yuugi to bail him out. But he ain't coming now, is he?

*short laugh*

But anyways…

I'm always the last one to get someone else's joke, and the one to cheer Yuugi on.

But there's nothing surprising about that, is there? Just a normal group of teens. The only thing that surprises you is that I've put everyone's place into perspective, haven't I?

There's something you should know about our group. Everything's pre-organized. You will never see anyone acting out of his or her particular role. Hell, we even gotta guy that bullies us, the typical rich kid. Seto Kaiba.


Remember what I said about Honda? The guy's a regular dumbass. But once in awhile, he comes up with a good idea. But everyone ignores him. Even me. after a bit, he stopped comin' up with them. Because it just wasn't something that Honda "Dumbass" Hiroto would do.

*long pause*

I always gotta be the guy that gets the short end of the stick. Always losing to Yuugi so he can give me advice on improvements. Failing tests so Ryou (when he has "time") can help me study. Falling down so Anzu can pick me up again.

*intake of breath*


I'm just so sick of how picture perfect everything is!

I mean, if we all just a perfect bunch of teens, would I have the father that I do? The bastard that doesn't do anything but drink?

And I can't talk about him to the rest of the group! They would just shy away from me, because the "puppy dog" doesn't have problems. Because my life should be a kaleidoscope of laughing faces and dancing bunnies!

Everytime I get above 50% on a test, they act like something is wrong, and they don't hang out with me, (making vague excuses all the while) until the next test. And the next failure. They don't know it, but I'm smart. Smarter than Anzu, anyways. But no one knows that.

No one outside our group ever bothers to look past the masks we put on, or in my case, the suit. They all see me as the guy who hates Kaiba, the boy in the dog suit. They don't seem to realize that me and Kaiba's jabs have gotten repetitive. It's like we're reading from a script. Its like we all are.


Is our acting that good?

I just wanted to do sumthin' outta character, you know? Something so big it would make everyone turn around and look, really _look_ and realize that it's not just Jou-the-clown, Jou-the-dog, but Jou, the _person_ talking. You know?

I just wanted people to notice who I am.


Sure, there were probably better things to do, and better ways to do it, but you gotta understand, I was _scared. I was Jou-the-clown for so long, I didn't even know if I remembered how to be Jou the person. And that scared me. more than any of the other stuff we've been through.


and I guess that's how I came up with the idea to kill myself.

*long pause*

*throat cleared*

*new voice*

But what gave you the idea to make it a murder-suicide?


*subject's voice*

Shizuka was always so…proud of me. of all the people that were fooled, she was the one that most fervently believed it. I decided to do it over at mom's house because God knows how long it would it take for the old man to fin me—and she just happened to interfere. It was nothing personal…just an accident.

*long pause*


I never thought I would miss her!

*more sobbing*

*subject's voice is strained*

You guys know the rest. I guess…I guess the neighbors heard her scream. You people came in, just as I was ready to jump after her…

*subject's voice fades*

--the following is an excerpt from the private journal of Jounouchi Katsuya--


Just got back from my interview session with the police. They seemed to believe that I didn't mean to push her, but I cried a bit, just in case.

They really _are_ fools! Did they actually think that I would endanger myself just to make a point?

But at least no one will look at me the same way again…even if I am labeled crazy now…

Oh wait, there's the phone. Maybe the cops want to talk to me some more…

Ok. Got back from the phone and am in strange mood. It was Yuugi. He asked me when my trail was, offered condolences for Shizuka, but other than that, he pretended as if nothing had happened. He wanted to know if I would meet him and the others for pizza…come to think of it…Yuugi hadn't been himself for a few weeks…

But this experience has made me wonder; just how hard is it to escape the labels and masks? Is it even possible?

But I can't think about that for long. After all, I'm meeting the others for pizza.



PI: In case you're wondering, the next chapter of "Awake and Dreaming" should be up soon. It's about halfway written.