Author's Note: Welcome to my debut in the realm of fanfiction. This is a fairly short chapter; I just wanted to put the prologue up and see if this writing style worked. This fic contains shounen-ai, so don't continue if you don't like that. Questions, comments, and constructive criticism are appreciated.

Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh, or any other fine mangas/animes

*'Kura, what's the matter?*

Yami Bakura, Tomb Robber and general-purpose thief extraordinaire, was sulking.

*'Kura, won't you please answer me?*

No response.

*I know you're paying attention, 'Kura. I can always tell.*

Still, only silence. Ryou Bakura found himself questioning his own sanity. It wasn't the first time, either. He was getting upset because a voice in his head WASN'T speaking to him, for goodness sakes.

*Say something, 'Kura, won't you?* he pleaded.


"You are being so diffi-" Ryou began.

*-cult,* he finished silently, hoping his father hadn't heard him reproaching himself. *Well, maybe you'll be happy when they send me to the psychiatric ward, 'Kura.*

**No, then I would be even more bored than I am now.** Ryou got a mental picture of his dark half stretching like a cat (he still wasn't sure how Bakura managed that, even if it WAS only in his head).

*So you're finished with this particular bout of moodiness?*

**Not really,** Bakura sighed, giving himself an air of long suffering. **Until my current situation improves, I'm afraid I can't get over it.**

*What current situation would that be?* Ryou asked exasperatedly. *The one where I'm sharing my body with you, quite willingly I might add?*

**That's the problem,** Bakura informed him. **Our relationship is just not what it should be.**

Ryou was confused. Their relationship seemed nice to him, albeit dysfunctional. But what could one expect, when a mild-mannered British boy was involved with a maniacal ex-Tomb Robber? *What? I know we quarrel sometimes-often,* he amended. *But I thought we were-*

**Oh, not that,** Bakura snorted. **I'm hardly one of those 'therapists'. What did you think I wanted, marriage counseling?**

*You watch too much television,* Ryou said. *It's very odd, hearing an ancient Egyptian spirit say, 'marriage counseling'.*

**Well it's odd to hear you say 'asparagus',** Bakura retorted. Ryou started to point out that that didn't make any sense, but his yami was talking again.

**The problem is, I need a body of my own.**

*Oh?* Ryou asked. *You suddenly NEED one? Why? Are you-* He was suddenly nervous. *Are you sick of me, then?*

**No, no.** Bakura rolled his mental eyes. **You are ridiculously neurotic sometimes.**

*Then what is it?*

**You're so pretty, it would be fun to see you from outside,** Bakura explained sweetly.

Ryou wasn't sure whether to take that as a compliment or not. *Isn't 'pretty' usually for girls?*

**Well you ARE very feminine. Handsome would hardly be appropriate.**

*So that's it?* Ryou asked skeptically. *You NEED your own body so you can better admire how pretty and girlish I am?*

**Among other things.**

*What other things?*

**Let's just say it doesn't help that you keep-** Bakura paused. **Never mind.**

*Not 'never mind'!* Ryou said indignantly. *What do you mean, other things? Oh no,* he added, with a flash of foreboding. *You want to be a thief again, don't you?*

There was a mental noise that felt like a suppressed laugh, then Bakura agreed quickly, **That, yes.**

Then there was silence for a moment, although, Ryou supposed, that was a meaningless statement, given that the conversation was in their heads anyway. After thinking that out, and waiting another few seconds for Bakura to continue, Ryou prompted, *And?*

**And what?** It was hard to tell if Bakura was actually surprised, or just feigning it.

Ryou decided to give him the benefit of the doubt and explain 'and what?'.*And, why else do you NEED a body right now?*

**It's very boring, staying in my soul room all the time.**

*I could let you have my body more often,* Ryou offered.

There was another suppressed mental chuckle. **That would defeat the point.**

*What point?*

**The point of me having my own body, of course.**

*Which is?*

**I told you already.**

*No, you didn't. You said I keep doing something, and that's why you need your own body. And,* Ryou said, letting some of his frustration show through, *it sounds as though you keep laughing at me. So what's the truth?*

**I told you: I want to be a thief again.**

*No, I asked you if that was it, and you laughed and said, 'yes, that'.*

**I don't think I understand the problem.**

Ryou was about to tell him that he knew perfectly well what the problem was, and was being difficult again, and then...


Ryou let out a small scream and jumped about ten feet into the air from his position on the sofa. "Oh, hello, father," Ryou managed, smiling weakly.

**You can't say that scream wasn't feminine.**

"Oh, quiet about that already."

"Ryou, wha-?" His father looked at him strangely.

"Oh, not you," Ryou said hastily. "I was thinking about something one of my friends said earlier. That's why I was startled, you see. I was deep in thought."

"So you're all right?" his father asked with concern. "When you screamed, I thought-"

"Oh, no, I'm fine," Ryou assured him. "You just startled me, that's all."

"I'm sorry," his father apologized. Then he brightened. "I see you're still wearing that pendant I gave you. You had it on at the airport yesterday too. Do you wear it all the time?"

**As if I'd let you take it off.**

"No, I mean, yes, I do. I really like it," Ryou said, smiling for real. "Thank you again."

"You're welcome," his father said, flashing a grin in return.

It was quiet for a minute as Ryou's father shifted his weight uncomfortably. Then he glanced down at his watch. "Oh, I'm sorry, Ryou, I'd best get back to work," and he hurried out of the room.

"Well, that went better than usual," Ryou murmured to himself.

**Unlike yesterday?**

*Very unlike,* Ryou sighed. The day before, he'd been so in the habit of talking aloud to his dark, that he'd done that the whole way home. He was surprised his father hadn't made a stop at the hospital.

**You should let me talk to him myself sometime,** Bakura suggested.

*Don't get any ideas, I'm not that desperate for father-son time,* Ryou said firmly. *Besides, it's getting better. He actually talked to me a bit before running off.*

**He could have thought of a more likely excuse,** Bakura said in disgust. **It's not as though he works on a schedule. He's an archaeologist.**

*He has deadlines...* Ryou trailed off as his dark raised a mental eyebrow. *You're right,* he admitted. *He's not a very good liar.*

**Neither are you.**

*That's true, too.*

**How did I end up living with the two most sickeningly honest people in the world?** Bakura wondered.

*If you think I've forgotten our earlier conversation, I haven't,* Ryou warned. *I still want to know why you NEED your own body.*

**Aren't we meeting the Pharaoh and his assorted lackeys today?**

"Oh my goodness!" Ryou exclaimed out loud. He quickly stood up and looked at the clock. "I completely forgot! We're already late!" He headed for the front door, then paused. "Father! I'm going to see a movie with my friends!"

"All right," came his father's somewhat muffled reply. "Let me know when you get back, Ryou."

"I will!" Ryou called back, already halfway out the door. *And don't think I won't remember what we were talking about,* Ryou told Bakura as sternly as he could manage.

Author's Note: Please review and tell me if you would like to see this continued! Thank you! ^-^