Wish you were here

Warnings/notes : Seto/Joey, slightly weird at times, slight fluff

Disclaimer : I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh. The song 'Wish you were here' belongs to Blackmore's Night.

written at 27th october 2003, by Misura

For Sparky Knight, with apologies for picking the easiest one. ^^;

**********

[Joey]

//Wish you were here

Me, oy, my countryman

Wish you were here//

He remembered the last time he'd tried to call Seto.

Usually, Seto called him, in between meetings. Due to the time-diference between Japan and Europe, those calls had sometimes come in the middle of the night, waking up his father.

He hadn't cared.

It was worth being yelled at, if it meant he'd be able to hear Seto's voice again. He'd known Seto was busy ; his tiredness was so audible he had worriedly asked if Seto was getting enough sleep once, even if he knew Seto hated being fussed over.

Seto had called him a 'silly mutt' and scoffed that he was just fine.

He hadn't cared about that either.

//I wish you were here//

"I'm sorry, Mister ... Wheeler, but Mister Kaiba isn't available at the moment." A woman, coolly denying him his wish, talking like if *she* had anything to say about it, Kaiba would never be available for the likes of him.

"Can't you at least ask him, tell him it's me?" He had hated the pleading tone in his voice and for a brief moment imagined asking Kaiba to fire her or something like that. Petty, perhaps.

She had sighed, causing him for one moment to feel a little guilty. Seto probably wasn't the easiest person to work for after all. "Listen, Mister Wheeler, I really can't bother - "

"Please!" He had laid every ounce of conviction he possessed in that single word, praying it would be enough to sway her. "Please."

//Don't you know snow is getting colder?//

"Very well then. One moment." He had felt jubilant then, certain that in a few more seconds he'd be talking to Seto about what they'd do once he got back. In one month, they'd meet again face to face.

Or so Seto had promised him during their last conservation.

"Mister Kaiba is too busy to speak to you. As I predicted." She had sounded smug, a little peeved at having her knowledge of her boss questioned, but satisfied now that *she*'d been proven right.

"He said that?" He hadn't been able to believe it. Surely Seto missed him just as much as he missed Seto? Surely Seto wouldn't ...

"Yes." A part of him hadn't wanted to take that for the truth, had told him she was just lying to get rid of him. Still, he hadn't seen the sense in arguing with her. He'd hung up, feeling numb.

//And I miss you like hell//

Seto had called him four days later, at three in the morning. They'd talked for about half an hour, longer than usual, because some meeting had been canceled, leaving Seto with some spare time.

He hadn't brought up the subject of the secretary then, nor in any of the following conversations during the next three months, after Seto had prolonged his stay.

He told himself it wasn't important, that it wasn't worth wasting breath on. Not even to himself would he admit that he was afraid of what Seto would say to his complaint, what commonplace apology he would receive.

It was eating away at him, this uncertainty. True, Seto kept calling him, true, he always sounded happy to hear Joey, but ... how much of that was out of habit, how much wishful thinking?

There was no way he could know. If only Seto would come back ...

Once they were face to face again, once Seto'd put his arms around him again, he would be certain of the other's love for him. Or see it for a lie, a truth of the past.

//And I'm feelin' blue//

Joey sighed, staring at the ceiling of his room. Perhaps he should call Yugi, to ask if that offer for an evening of watching movies and eating popcorn was still open.

His friends were worried about him, he knew. Worried about the way he tended to hurry home after school, to make sure he'd be there if Seto would happen to call.

Nowadays it sometimes seemed he lived only for school and the phonecalls of a person who might not even care more about him than some stupid businessmeeting. Pathetic, really, when he thought about it. When had he become so dependent on Seto for his happiness?

He should leave and have fun with Yugi and the others. Who cared if Seto'd call to find him not at home? It might do his lover good, to find out he wasn't the person Joey's life revolved around.

//I've got feelings for you//

"I don't need him." Joey mumbled, angry at himself for still not moving to leave, to pick up the phone and go tell Yugi to expect him in a few minutes.

Finally though he forced himself to do it, to dial Yugi's number and wait for Grandfather to pick up with his familiar greeting "With the Turtle Game Shop, how may I help you?".

"Can I talk to Yugi please?" A look at the clock told him it was half past eight ; about the time Seto had called previously. He gritted his teeth, determined not to give in to the panicked urge to put down the horn.

"Hi, Joey!" Yugi sounded cheerful. Of course, *his* lover never left him for some stupid trip to the other end of the world. Yugi didn't know by half how lucky he was to have someone like Yami ...

"Yug, could I come over tonight? I feel kinda lonely." He confessed it freely, knowing Yugi would understand and not think less of him for the outburst.

"Sure! You're always welcome! Oh, excuse me for a moment. Yami, could you - " Yugi's voice faded away and Joey grimaced. He could picture Yugi standing there, receiver in his hand, while Yami walked by, a curious look on his face, could almost hear Yugi explaining in a whisper Joey was on the line, asking if he could come over. Yami'd smile, nodding and saying it was about time Joey crept out of his shell a little.

//Do you still feel the same?//

For a moment he felt an overwhelming jealousy. Would he and Seto ever be like that? He doubted it ; Seto would always be CEO of Kaiba Corp first, Mokuba's big brother second ... and maybe, if he was lucky, the lover of Joey Wheeler, third.

Determinedly shoving these bitter thoughts to a distant corner of his mind, Joey grabbed his jacket and walked to the door, only to be halted by his father, yelling something.

Normally, he'd have ignored it, but ...

"Joey, one Seto Kaiba for you on the phone!"

//From the first time I laid my eyes on you//

For a few seconds, he wanted to leave anyway, to shrug and walk away, to let Seto feel for once what it felt like to be denied.

Yami might have assured him that would be the best thing, but Yugi'd probably tell him to follow his heart, to run back and tear the receiver out of his father's hand to tell Seto how much he was missing him. In the end, he did neither.

Instead, he calmly walked back, waiting for his father to leave the room with a scowl on his face. Taking a deep breath, he said "Hello Seto."

"Hello, Joey." Seto's voice sounded odd. He wondered if something was wrong with Seto or if it was merely a bad line. "It's been a while, hasn't it?"

*****

Ten minutes later, Joey was back in his room, staring, not at the ceiling this time, but at the first and only picture that had ever been taken of him and Seto together.

//I felt joy of living//

Mokuba had made it, sneaking up on them in a rather intimate moment. Well, they'd shared more intimate things than a kiss on the couch of course, but they'd still been rather embarrassed at the time.

Seto hadn't talked to his little brother for days after, until the situation got so much on both Mokuba's and Joey's nerves that they forced him to give it up.

He smiled, remembering that afternoon and so many others, just the three of them fooling around. It had surprised him how relaxed Seto could be when in private. It made sense in a way, he considered, given that Mokuba was Seto's brother after all, and no one could ever say *he* was stiff or cold.

There should have been some awkwardness, with him intruding on their family-life, but he couldn't remember any time when he had not been happy in Seto's company.

That was the crux of the problem of course ; when he was *with* Seto, the world was a bright and wonderful place, but too often, Seto wasn't there.

//I saw heaven in your eyes//

On the picture, Seto's eyes were slightly widened, probably due to the surprise of seeing the flash of the camera. His own were closed, a goofy grin on his face as he leaned back against the cushions.

He wondered if Seto had his copy of the image with him too, if he ever looked at it and wished they were back there and then.

"Well, I can ask him soon enough I guess."

Taking a last look at the thing, he put the picture back in the lowest drawer of his desk and walked down the stairs again, grabbing the keys of his bike in passing.

The feeling of the wind in his hair as he sped through the streets of Domino was better than it had been in a long time, no longer reminding him of his loneliness.

Memories of long rides with no other purpose than to get away, to share the illusion of being free with the only person he would give up his freedom for, filled his mind, almost to the point where he hardly noticed the traffic around him anymore, but this time, they brought expectation, rather than longing.

//In your eyes//

The airport was crowded as ever at this hour. Somehow though, he noticed Seto almost at once, saw blue eyes light up for a moment, before Seto calmly started walking his way, after saying something to the flight attendant, who nodded friendly.

Joey told himself it didn't disappoint him, that he wouldn't have expected Seto to jump in his arms, sobbing how much he'd missed him. He grinned a little at the thought.

By the time he came face to face with Seto, Joey was smiling, as carefree and cheerful as ever.

~tbc~