"Ankh Of Despair"
Hm, so many of you are happy that they are together. . . This is the final chapter. . . I think. . . and I am so happy that so many people have taken the time to read my story. This final chapter will tie up a lot of loose ends (including an explanation as to why I chose the title that I did) as well as create a few new ones, but, like all of my fanfictions, it will leave a sense of wonder, a sense of wanting to know what exactly will happen next. Perhaps some of you will hate me at the end of this chapter. . . then again, perhaps I'll have you asking for more -smiles- I hope for the latter.
This chapter was written over a very long period of time. . . most of it, however, was written while listening to music from 'Angel Sanctuary'. The music has a very mythical/fantasy feel, and yet a dark sound do it. . . music often influences my writing. . .let's see if that applies to this. Now, for the final chapter. . . Enjoy it.
DISCLAIMER: I think you already know.
Yugi wiped his hands off on the ivory towel that lay by the kitchen sink as he finished drying the dishes. As he folded the cloth back into some sort of orderly shape, he glanced up to the neon-green, digital clock on the oven. It was already four o'clock in the afternoon and Yami, who had left the house shortly after breakfast, had yet to return. He silently wondered whether he should be excited or worried about the extended absence of the Pharaoh.
"Yugi?" Solomon Muto entered the room, stretching his arms above his head and then dropping them back to his sides in a lazy manner, "Where's your spirit friend?"
"You mean Yami?" Yugi asked, watching as his aging grandfather took a seat at the kitchen table, "He went to Kaiba's house this morning.
Solomon jumped slightly in his seat, "Kaiba's house you say? What kind of business does he have there?"
Yugi smiled, leaning against the wall on the other side of the room and peering out the window to watch the wind carry off stray leaves, "He had a few things to take care of with Seto." He chuckled lightly under his breath, in hopes that his guardian wouldn't hear it.
"Is that so?" The elder Muto chuckled as well, but loud enough for his grandson to catch it, "Well then, I suppose a long absence would mean he was successful. . . or dying a second death." He laughed again, this time standing from the table and leaving the room. . . but before long, his head poked back into the doorway, "Oh, and instead of worrying yourself, why don't you just go and get him? It shouldn't trouble the Kaiba's, after all, you're friends with Mokuba, right?" He smiled, leaving.
Yugi bit at his lower lip a bit before looking out the window again. He left the kitchen, winding his way through the house, leaving through the front door.
Solomon smiled from in the livingroom as he heard the door shut, "Love can make us do funny things sometimes. . . ah, to be young again."
The doorbell sounded throughout the house, ricocheting off of the walls and down each hall of the Kaiba household.
Mokuba managed to pull his head free of the mass of pillows he had piled upon it to block out the rather unnerving sounds coming from the main bedroom upstairs. Yes, he admitted to his brothers' beauty, but found it utterly disturbing to hear him calling out lustfully to the Pharaoh. . . though he was positive anyone else would have found it intoxicating.
He swiftly wound through the house, the sound of the doorbell becoming more and more persistent, with fewer and fewer seconds of silence in between each tone until it became like one continuous sounds, driving Mokuba towards insanity. He yanked the door open with a growing frustration, "Stop with the damn doorbell, you little pun- Yugi?" He caught himself as his eyes came right to the level of wide, violet orbs.
"Hey Mokuba!" He yelled quickly, then settled down a bit, "Uh, yeah, sorry about all of those rings. . . I was just wondering if Yami was still here." He tried to look around the shorter Kaiba brother as though he expected to see the Pharaoh bound right by.
The black-haired boy grinned, "He's upstairs with Seto, buuuuuuuuuuuuut. . ." his voice faded off and he giggled, causing Yugi to look at him quizzically, "They're very busy right now." As though on cue, Seto let out a loud and rather suggestive moan. If you thought that Yugi's eyes couldn't possibly get any bigger, he certainly would have proven you wrong right at that moment.
"Mokuba!" Yugi half-screamed, "Are they having se-"
"Shh! Don't let them hear you!"
"Hear me? Hear me! With your brother making those noises, they won't hear a thing!" He shivered as Seto moaned again. . . and again and again. . . but soon enough, there were two voices following that exotic rhythm, which he concluded that the other voice belonged to the Pharaoh himself, "Mokuba?"
"What brought this on?"
"Good question. . . Yami had accidentally left the Millennium Rod here, so he went upstairs to see if maybe Seto had it. . . and the next thing I know, I'm listening to gay porn!"
Both of them visibly shook with excitement. . .or disgust. . . most likely the latter. . . as the two handsome men upstairs cried out each others' names, signaling the end of that little party.
"So. . . what do I do then? Should I just wait down here?" Yugi twiddled his thumbs as he turned away, trying to hide his obvious blush.
"Sure!" Mokuba chimed, "We can play video games!"
Yugi smiled at the younger boy, "That sounds like fun! What better way to pass the time than to play games?" He was lead to another room by Mokuba.
Yami lay beside his love, the smell of their sweat melting together creating a surprisingly sweet scent, a familiar one at that. He wrapped his arms around Seto protectively, smiling softly as the brunette snuggled into his chest, eyes mere sapphire slits, reflecting the dim light that had snuck through the satin curtains in small slivers.
Seto looked up at the one he once called Pharaoh. Something felt so right about the way he was held. . . and yet something felt so wrong. . . he couldn't quite put his finger on what it was, but something was there, and he felt it within his heart.
That voice rang within his ears as a gentle chime, but he felt a heavy wait on his heart begin to form. . . for what reason, he didn't know. Too caught up in his own thoughts to answer, he simply looked up to Yami with lazy eyes.
"What did you think?" His smile grew, a faint blush daring to grace his cheeks.
"I. . ." How could he answer such a question? It was wonderful, but. . .
"It's okay, Seto," He chuckled, his face lighting up as he did so, "Just be honest."
This was his once-greatest rival. . . his enemy. . . the one that he sought to defeat even if were to mean his own demise. . . but why now? Why so suddenly? Yes, it had been that golden staff, surely he wouldn't have jumped into bed so quickly with the king of games out of sheer will. Perhaps. . . perhaps that was this strange feeling within him.
"Are you alright Seto?" His look was of concern this time. . . genuine concern. . . those crimson eyes searching his own azure windows as though looking for the answers buried within his soul. . . Seto was safe with the knowledge that the Pharaoh wasn't able to read minds.
He stood from the bed, and Yami made a strange sound. . . a small whimper. . . as the thin warmth in his arms left him, "Yami," Seto began, and the young king's eyes changed quickly to the emotion that was worry, "Don't look at me like that. . ." Seto turned away, blushing lightly at the fact that he stood there, his body completely exposed, "I. . . this. . ."
"Just say it Seto. . . just spit it out."
Could he read minds? "This just doesn't feel right. . ." What could he possibly say? That beautiful face. . . those gorgeous features. . . "perhaps we should just. . . just be. . ."
The door slammed shut and Seto's eyes flew back to the bed. . . which was now empty, the sheets tossed aside and Yami's clothes missing from the messy pile on the floor. A dull pain came to lay on Seto's heart this time, now that the unknown pressure had been relieved. He fell to his knees, not bothering to get dressed. . . for now, it seemed to be of the least of importance. . .
Yami moved down the stairs clumsily, pulling on articles of clothing all the while, tears welling at the edges of his eyes, threatening to spill over and stain his cheeks at any moment. While fiddling with the button on his pants, his heel caught the edge of a step, sending him tumbling down the stairs. He landed at the bottom in a heap, cussing under his breath. Two sets of eyes stared down at him curiously.
"Yami?" The Pharaoh left the ground for a split-second as his was startled from whatever had chose to occupy his mind at that moment, to look up at the wide, violet eyes looking down at him like a worried mother might, "Are you alright?"
"But you're crying. . . and your pants are undone. . ." He brushed away his spirits tears, kneeling next to him.
Mokuba folded his arms, his fuse running short, "What did my brother do?"
Yami shook his head. . . this wasn't something he wanted to be thinking about. . . everything was so sudden. . . "I. . . I don't know what went wrong! We. . . we made love. . ." He smiled softly, more tears spilling over and marching down his cheeks, to form a miniature puddle on the floor beside him, "I was holding him. . . it was Heaven. . . and when I asked him what he thought about it, he got out of the bed and told me that it didn't feel right. . . I left right before he could. . . he could. . ." Yugi embraced the Pharaoh, who cried relentlessly onto his shoulder.
"Before he could what, Yami?"
"Before he could tell me that he just wanted to be friends!"
Mokuba's jaw dropped, "He said that?"
"No! But. . . he was going to! I just know he was!" He wiped at his eyes and stood, wobbling slightly until he caught his balance, "I don't want to talk about it anymore, I just want to go home, Yugi. . . I want out of this house!"
Seto fought with the final button at the top of his shirt for mere seconds before he got fed up and left it as it was. He shoved his hand through his messy brown locks, biting his lower lip softly. With quick steps, he was able to get downstairs just in time to see Mokuba closing the door. Yami had gone. . . and by the expression on the little boys face, nothing was a secret.
"Seto!" He cried, lunging toward his older brother and grabbing at his shirt in an attempt to get a good hold upon him, "How could you do that to him! I don't understand you! What happened to my brother! You're just some freak that likes to toy with people! You're a fucking bastard!" He stormed up the stairs.
"Mokuba!" It was too late. There was a faint 'click' as the raven-haired boy locked his bedroom door behind himself. "I didn't mean to upset him. . . I. . ." He was talking to himself now, but perhaps that is what he needed. . . he just needed to think. . .
He sighed, reaching up a hand to rub at his neck. He pulled it back suddenly when he felt cool metal. Rushing to the nearest mirror, he took a good look at his newest accessory. Adorning his neck was Yami's trademark choker. . . Seto remembered now. The Pharaoh had fastened it around his neck before they had commenced in their. . . activities. He ran his hand over it, and then over the red mark just above it on the right. He tilted his head to get a better look at his marking. . . a hickey from Yami. . .
"Yami. . . Why is it that I feel this way? I've never felt this way before. . .What is this feeling that I have?" The priest sluggishly made his way back up the stairs. . . maybe it would be best to sleep. . . if only he could sleep forever. . .
The Muto's gathered around the dinner table, the air was unusually heavy, thick with an awkward silence that was normally filled with Yugi's endless, hyper chatter about the days happenings. The bright-eyed boy bounced in his seat as though he would burst if he didn't speak soon.
"Yugi," Solomon began, "If you have something to say, then please say it!" He laughed one of those thick, loud laughs of an aging man, "Lord only knows it's too quiet in here!" He flashed a quick smile at his grandson and briefly nodded his head toward Yami, who seemed all-to interested in what he had on his plate and the numerous designs he could make with it. . . a sure sign that something was on his mind, that something was bothering him and he couldn't quite work it out all by himself.
"Yami. . ." Yugi muttered softly, yet loud enough to receive the attention of the Pharaoh's half-lidded eyes, "Don't beat yourself up over this. . . this is Kaiba we're talking about here! He doesn't know anything other than hatred!"
"Shut up Yugi." Those ruby eyes flashed with fire for a fraction of a second, so small that if one blinked, it would have been missed.
"What?" Yugi sat up straight in his seat, shocked.
"I said shut up!" The crimson-eyed king stood from his seat, slamming his hands down onto the table in the form of fists, "He isn't like that! He. . ." Yami took his seat once more, and the tense moment seemed to lighten up a bit, "He isn't like that. . ." A solitary tear fell from each eye, the silver gems sliding slowly to puddle on the floor at his feet, "When we made l- uh, Yugi?" His eyes darted about the room in an uneasy manner.
"Yeah?" The Pharaoh motioned his head toward the grandfather, who seemed overly-eager to hear the story of what happened between he and Seto Kaiba. "Oh! Uh. . . can you get our plates grandpa? We need to talk about something important." Before a reply was given, he grasped Yami's wrist and dragged him up the stairs at a lightening-quick pace.
Solomon chuckled to himself, "Kids these days. . ." He piled the plates in the sink for Yugi to clean off later.
"It was as though it wasn't Seto Kaiba, but my Seto instead. . . as though we had drifted back to Egypt. . . and I just thought that perhaps there was a chance for us in this time. . . at that moment, anything seemed possible. . . all goals seemed to be in reach. . ." Yami absentmindedly rocked himself slowly on Yugi's bed, his knees hugged up close to his chest.
Yugi placed a loving hand on his partners' shoulder. . . he had been doing that a lot recently, "Maybe it just wasn't meant to be Yami. . . I'm sorry. . . but he's Seto Kaiba. . ."
"But he seemed so much like my priest!"
"But he isn't your priest, Yami!" Yugi bit his lip when Yami shut his mouth suddenly and turned away, "Yami. . . I- I didn't mean to say it like that. . ."
"No. . . it's alright aibou. . . you're absolutely right." He turned to the young teen and sighed, "All along, I've only been thinking of myself. . . and I've only been thinking of the Seto that I once knew and loved. I've been blind all along. . . blind to the fact that he isn't the Seto that I was close to. . . he is a completely new Seto, but with the same features. . . I should have thought of that before. . . but why? Why would he have slept with me?"
"I don't know. . . maybe you'll get to ask him some day."
"I bet it was that fucking rod. . ."
"Very likely. . . hey, speaking of which, where is it?"
Crimson eyes lit up, "Ah, shit! I left it at the mansion!" He clutched at his hair as though he were trying to yank every last strand out. . . he gave up shortly after, and fell back on the bed, "I'll just get it some other time. . . unless, you would be so kind as to do it for me, Yugi. . ."
"Hehe! Of course Yami!" He slid off the bed and headed toward the door, "Well, I doubt that grandpa did the dishes, so I'll go take care of those! I'll be right back!" With a nod from the Pharaoh, he hurriedly bounded out of the room and down the stairs.
Yami leaned his head to the side, looking out the window and toward the moon that had just risen to kiss the sky. The stars gathered all about it, marveling that it's silver luster.
"It's torture. . . torture to be so close to such a beauty. . . and yet so far away all at once. . ." He closed his eyes, drifting off into his little fantasy world of ancient Egypt. Seto was there, standing tall, his muscles tense and his waist fit. His garbs were beautiful, and looked perfect on him, the deep cerulean of the cloth bringing out his finely-colored features, the loose fit bringing out his toned body. . . and the golden ankh across his breastplate always shimmered beautifully. . . just like the heart that it protected. . . the heart that was once his and would never be again. . . the heart that died along with ancient Egypt and would never again exist in this world. . .
He laughed silently to himself, "Protect. . . bullshit. . . Seto was. . . he was killed. . ." His half-smile disappeared as it was replaced with trembling lips and warm tears, "Why Seto? Why do you do this to me? Make me live this life of. . . life of despair. . ." Again he chuckled, yet the tears fell faster, and his mind drifted back to that golden ankh that sealed his loves chest. . . his priest's chest, "How ironic. . . A symbol to mean 'life' leading it's bearer to an early tomb. . ." He wiped at his own tears, "Even after death, Seto. . . I love you, and I swear to the gods that I'll never quit loving you, even if I die a thousand times over. . . this life of despair. . . this ankh of despair. . ."
Seto couldn't sleep, these visions of Egypt. . . visions of his own body held in the arms of the one who had left so many hours ago. . . and that pain in his heart had spread to the rest of his body until it throbbed in his head like a tiny voice. . . and then again, perhaps it was a tiny voice. . . with all that had happened so recently, who was he to doubt what was possible and what wasn't?
Sapphire eyes flared with a curiosity. He found himself mysteriously standing in front of his desk. Not about to ask questions, he sat in the chair that he could have sworn he had pushed in and reached ahead to where he expected his laptop to be waiting for him. . . instead, his hand met with a cold, smooth substance. . . he grasped it, the object feeling very thin in his hand. The CEO pulled it from the shadows to gaze upon it in the moonlight that streamed through the window, only to throw it to the floor.
"Leave me alone!" The Millennium Rod lay on the floor, it's one, golden eye staring up at him, "What do you want from me!" Yeah, he had lost it, no use in fighting it now. Before he could make a fool of himself anymore, a few quick raps sounded on the door.
"Seto? Are you alright?"
"Huh? Yeah Mokuba. . . a nightmare is all, go back to bed, I'm fine." Again, a lie. . . or was it? It seemed as though his thoughts weren't truly his own. . . it was hard for him to decipher what he really wanted for himself. . . his mind had been clouded with foreign 'memories' the past few days, and now he couldn't tell what was the past, and what was the present. "Past and present. . ."
"So you finally accept your past, Seto?"
Seto nearly jumped out of his skin, his back hit the wall with a thud as he whirled around the face the intruder, "Who's there!"
The strange remained in the shadows, but two large sapphire eyes could be seen in the shadows, glowing in an unearthly manner.
"I, too, was a priest in Egypt. . . Seto, you are the reincarnation of the spirit of the priest Seto. . . his spirit, his memories, his life. . . is buried deep within you. Do you accept this as a truth?"
"I. . ."
"Are you still in denial?" He sounded almost in disbelief.
"I don't know, I. . . hey wait a minute! How do you know about all of this?"
"Call it an intuition. . . answer my question."
"I suppose that I have no reason to deny it. . . all of the evidence is there. . . all of the proof. . . and these memories. . ."
This mysterious man stepped from the shadows now to retrieve the rod, which had been carelessly tossed to the floor those many moments ago. He was revealed to be a rather young-looking man with a white turban and loose-fitting, white, middle-eastern robe. A feeling of familiarity struck Seto, but he tried his best to ignore it, "What are you doing?"
Shadi held the rod out to the brunette, "Accept your past. . . accept his memories as your own. . . after all, you are him. . . you just lack the memories that you once held sacred. . . this is the afterlife that you and the Pharaoh had promised to live together in. . . are you going to deny him that life?" All the while, the golden staff crept ever-closer to Seto's porcelain hands.
"N-no. . . I wouldn't. . ." His fingers had minds of their own as they ran over the soft gold, soon clutching the relic tightly and holding the object to his chest in an almost protective manner, "I accept my past. . . I accept my past as a priest of the Pharaoh Yami. . . I. . ." Tears fell from his long-frozen eyes, "I don't love him but. . . I do like him. . . and perhaps. . . perhaps if we get to know each other again, and if these new memories ever start to make sense. . . then I can give him the afterlife that I once promised. . ."
He glanced to where his visitor had stood, only to find empty space. . . yet there was something different. . .
On his bed, there lay a rather large portrait. . . the Pharaoh and the Priest Seto with their fingers entwined, sapphire and crimson locking together in a love-filled gaze, royal garbs flowing out beautifully from behind them, and the sun setting over the water. . . the water that Seto quickly recognized as more of a pool-like thing. . . the sea shrine. . .
Laying the painting aside, he lay down to try at sleeping again. . . a feeling of resolve coming over him slowly. . . and he drifted of into a lovely sleep, filled with dreams and images of the one he once loved. . . and the one that he hoped to love again. . .
Sad ending? Happy ending? It all depends on how you interpret it! I love you all so much for reading and reviewing my story! I had never expected this story to expand as much as it did! This is the longest chapter I've ever written. . . and perhaps my favorite as well. Please feel free to keep in touch with me through e-mail or AIM (I am currently on the screen name cryoftheicetears). I am planning on getting a live journal soon, and you will be able to find all of my ideas there. . . who knows, maybe I'll discuss a possible sequel? I hope to hear from you all!