Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh...nope, I don't...
Uhm...yes, well – hi there! Decided to take a small break from TLOTS (for those who are staring blankly at the title – it's the short version for "The legend of the Three Souls") and decided to write a Kaiba/Serenity fic. Don't know why, really...I guess my muse developed a great interest in that couple...[shrugs]
Oh, well – this is my first Kaiba/Serenity fic so don't hurl at me with sticks and stones if you don't like it. If you do like it, by any chance, please send me a review and make one, poor FF-net authoress happy!
And yes – I intend to finish TLOTS but right one I'm putting it on hiatus for some time... [ducks under due to the flying vegetable] So, please, have mercy! Also, I don't know if this has been done before because there are really many Kaiba/Serenity stories here, and I really can't read them all to see if this idea was already used...so, please don't sue me!
All right, now to the story...
Cheer up, Mr. Kaiba!
-By Alena S. Anigor-
Chapter I : Regretted decision
The tall, large building in the center of Domino City was crowded with people; most of them being the employees of the famous Kaiba Corporation. The spacious hall that welcomed everyone who entered the building was full of voices and murmurs, and it was practically swarmed with men in business suits and briefcases and with women with folders in their hands. They all seemed like identical twins, due to the fact that they all had the same haircut and the same outfits.
It looked like someone just entered a busy ant hole, but the traffic inside seemed to stop for a moment when one man entered that same hall. Silence followed in which everyone stopped frozen in the middle of their tasks to stand up straight and, as odd as it seemed, shudder with fright.
Mokuba was already used to that kind of everyday morning greetings, every time his brother entered the Kaiba Corp. The older Kaiba sibling strolled calmly down the hall, not sparing a glance at anyone who stood stiffly around him. Murmurs of 'Good morning, Mr. Kaiba' didn't seem to catch his interest as he proceeded towards a huge, modernly equipped elevator with the logo of Kaiba Corporation.
Mokuba skipped happily behind him, occasionally greeting the people around him who showed an equal amount of respect towards him as well. Sometimes, he wondered if those people around him ever had a minute to themselves but he wasn't too concerned with his brother's business; whatever he said or decided was considered as a good decision.
When the doors of the elevator closed, and the whizzing sound of the machine filled the smaller space around him Mokuba looked at his brother to see his expression change.
The CEO lowered his head, closing his eyes in exasperation and sighed. Holding a briefcase in his left hand, he touched the bridge of his nose with his other one, clutching it slightly. He rubbed his forehead the next moment, as if trying to iron the wrinkles of exhaustion and tiredness that were hidden behind his bangs. He let out a silent growl, barely audible as a slight vibration in his throat.
Mokuba was observing his brother for a while with an almost amused expression on his face. He actually liked to see his brother like that – it proved that he was just a human, like everyone else, as much as some considered him to be a cold, ruthless machine. Mokuba knew better. He knew him longer and ten times better than anyone else did and he liked moments like those; when he could look at his brother and see his other side, the one made of flesh and blood.
"You're tired," he said after a long silence. The elevator was still rising, the office being on the top floor. Kaiba looked down at him for a second then grunted silently. "You should get some rest."
"I'm fine, Mokuba," came the stoic reply of the CEO, "nothing I can't handle."
Mokuba's eyes saddened for a moment, but he smiled soon after that. He understood. His business and his company was everything to him and he admired him for managing to lead such a great corporation. He even idolized him in a way; wanting to become strong and resourceful like him some day...that didn't mean he would like to lead such a huge corporation some day; he was still in the process of growing up and he hadn't thought about his future seriously yet. For now, being with his brother and helping him was enough for him.
The elevator started slowing down until it finally stopped with a slight tremor and the computer voice announced they reached the top floor. The metallic doors opened, revealing an enormous office. It wasn't furnished with many things; the bottom of the office was occupied by a large desk and a leather chair, waiting patiently in front of the giant window and enabling everyone to see the heart of the Domino City. To the right, on the wall was a sizeable flat screen; a sofa placed in front of it.
Before Mokuba could even sit on the sofa and turn on the screen, Kaiba was already behind his desk, turning his laptop on.
He sat down brusquely, the sound of leather shifting filling the spacious office. Mokuba disappeared behind the sofa, letting himself sink into the soft fabric as he snatched the remote. Just when he was about to turn the screen on, there was a knock on the door and Kaiba groaned in irritation, rubbing the bridge of his nose again before allowing one of the women to enter. She greeted him shortly in a usual business tone, carrying a stack of folders in her hands.
"These are the ones sent to us by Mr. Schmidt," she informed flatly, standing stiffly in front of the desk. Kaiba frowned and took one of the folders from the large pile of them.
"You are dismissed." He told the woman who nodded quickly after that and stalked out of the office, closing the doors behind her. Mokuba finally found some privacy to push the 'on' button on the remote when he heard his brother cursing silently under his breath. He turned around to see what happened and saw him flipping the papers through the folder madly, eyes narrowed and glistening with anger and frustration. He raised his eyebrows questioningly at him.
"Something wrong?" he asked curiously, turning the screen off. Somehow, the desire to watch TV subsided when he saw his brother angry.
Kaiba was still rummaging through the folders, the wrinkles between his eyebrows deepening with every passing paper he read. He was mumbling something incoherent, until he threw the folders away and they landed several inches away from him, some of them falling across the edge of the desk and ending up on the floor in a heap.
Mokuba gawked at him for a good minute before he dared to ask what happened.
"That moron can't get anything right!" Kaiba barked back, his hand flying to his forehead again. He grimaced when he felt a stabbing sensation somewhere beneath and swore secretly for not taking any sleeping pills other than spending the almost entire night typing on his laptop.
Mokuba opened his mouth in confusion, looking to and fro the papers and his frustrated brother.
"Mr. Schmud?" He asked with interest, eyeing the papers with curiosity before hopping off the sofa to pick them up.
"Schmidt," Kaiba corrected him, deep voice full of weariness and irritation, "the one responsible for one of our branches in Germany. The idiot can't handle anything without making a mistake and then asking me for help...I should fire him!" There he stopped for a brief moment to stare at the pile of papers Mokuba handed him before he snatched the phone and called his secretary.
"Get in here." He commanded and the woman, who previously brought the papers, came in again, the expression on her face slightly apprehensive. She obviously didn't like the tone her boss addressed her with.
"Call Schmidt and tell him he's fired. Then call Heinrich and tell him he's got two days to fix the problem otherwise he can start looking for a new job as well!"
The secretary blinked and nodded slowly, a look of sheer shock crossing her features for a second. Then, without hesitation, walked out quickly, not wanting to risk her own resource of payment. The doors closed again, leaving utmost silence in the office. The only sound was coming from the bustling streets of Domino City below. Mokuba stared at his brother for a while, noticing for the first time that day dark circles under his eyes and the way his hair seemed slightly tousled, compared to his usual well – combed mane.
Kaiba started to pick up the remaining papers from his desk, glaring at them menacingly. Mokuba had a feeling that he'd rather curl them up in a ball and toss them outside the window or rip them in pieces and let them crumble in front of him. When he continued to glare at them and Mokuba had a sudden feeling he might even do that, he decided to switch the subject to try and avert him from destroying them.
"So...what are you up to next?" He asked him, a tad too enthusiastically and Kaiba diverted his eyes from the papers to look at him. Mokuba was smiling sweetly, making his brother arch an eyebrow quizzically. After he gave up on the idea to light the papers and watch them burn, he tossed them indifferently to the side and sighed heavily.
Mokuba's smile vanished from his face, replaced by a look of sadness. He knew oh too well that the company was his brother's life and that they all lived from it, but in his opinion – Seto was seriously neglecting his own life, and Mokuba suddenly became aware of the fact that his brother indeed needed some relaxation. He wanted to suggest that to him when the phone rang and Kaiba groaned again, picking the phone with such vigor, Mokuba thought he'd break it.
"What?" He spat out and growled a second later when he heard who was on the other line.
"Yes, you heard me right...No, I don't intend to do that...I don't care...You're wasting my time!"
Mokuba gaped at him and at the phone handle, noticing how his knuckles became white from applying the pressure. Kaiba was seething angrily and after he's had enough, finally snapped.
"I TOLD YOU ALREADY – YOU'RE FIRED! DEAL WITH IT!"
The phone was crushed back to its place. Mokuba winced. Kaiba was growling like a rabid dog.
"Uhm...Seto?" Mokuba asked meekly, inching away slightly from the desk. Kaiba was breathing heavily, his teeth gritted and his eyes blazing with fury.
"I...I think I'll go now...I have...um...homework to write...yeah! So bye!"
With that, the younger Kaiba dashed out of the large office, leaving a fuming CEO behind. When the doors closed and Mokuba was out of potential danger, he sighed in relief. The secretary who was sitting as her desk outside the office paled, looking at the younger Kaiba with fright.
"Is Mr. Kaiba..."
Mokuba waved his hand swiftly in the air.
"No," he breathed quickly, "trust me – you don't want to go in there."
The woman nodded understandingly and prayed deep inside for Kaiba to restrain himself from using the phone in his current state.
Kaiba, who was still in a raging mode, slowly rested his hands on the desk, lowering his head on them slowly.
"Crap." He muttered.
Mokuba was walking aimlessly down the streets, hoping his brother has managed to cool off a bit. He wanted to call him a few times already, but was afraid that the phone in Kaiba's office would end up on the concrete many floors below.
His shoulders sagged when he remembered his idea about offering his brother to take some time off and go on a vacation...now, when he thought about it, the very idea seemed ridiculous to him as well. Seto – on a vacation...perhaps, but with a laptop in his lap and a mobile phone attached to his ear. Either way, his brother was starting to go over the top, and Mokuba feared he'd loose his sanity in the end.
"Yeah," he muttered, "he would end up in some mental institution probably..." An image of Kaiba popped in his head, standing in a cell with a straightjacket and screaming at everyone they're fired. Mokuba shuddered at the thought and quickly dismissed the image away from his mind. He was about to turn around the corner when he almost smacked into someone. He yelped, and backing away, tripped. The world around him started to turn upside down and when he expected to fall flat on his bottom, someone stopped him and pulled him up again.
He swayed a bit in front of the person who saved him until he raised his head to see a younger girl with long brown hair and hazel eyes looking at him worriedly.
"Oh, are you all right?" she asked him politely and Mokuba opened his mouth to say he was okay when the girl started to seem familiar to him...very familiar...
"You're Serenity!" He yelled with recognition and the girl in front of him gaped at him. "Serenity Wheeler – Joey's sister!"
Serenity was still staring at him in puzzlement, trying to remember the boy who obviously knew her very well...and her brother as well. She lowered her head a bit to look more closely at him. Mokuba smiled at her inability to recognize him.
"Hmm..." she mumbled, observing the boy with eyes narrowed in confusion. Dark, messy hair, violet bright eyes...energetic voice and a cheerful expression...a sudden image of Battle City tournament came to her mind and she gasped, straightening herself to look at him with acknowledgment now.
"Mokuba? You're Mokuba, right?" she asked him, looking at him in wonder.
Mokuba nodded, glad that she managed to remember. Although his brother was never too fond of Yuugi and let alone Joey, he liked to consider them as friends and the girl he met on that faithful tournament became his friend as well.
"Yup, that's me!" He chimed and scratched his head, blushing slightly. Serenity smiled now back, still a bit surprised to see him. As far as she knew, Kaiba brothers were always considered to be something close to a celebrity, and she thought it was strange for one of them to even speak to her like that.
"So, what are you up to?" She asked him and he shrugged.
"Don't know, really...running away from Seto maybe?" he replied sheepishly and Serenity looked at him oddly.
"You're running away from your brother? Why, is he mean to you?" came her question and Mokuba shook his head immediately.
"No, no, no, he's just...well...busy, you know and when he's busy then he's...grumpy."
The explanation seemed to satisfy the younger Wheeler and she smiled and nodded. Since she seemed as if she had nothing to do as well, and he himself was bored to death, he decided to spend his time with one of his friends. After all, Serenity seemed nice and sweet enough to hang out with.
"You have time?" he asked her and she nodded again, watching him curiously. "Then...wanna go for a drink? My treat!"
Serenity was surprised for a moment, wondering briefly why would a Kaiba ask such a thing, but after a moment of hesitation decided to join the young boy. She had nothing better to do anyway.
"Sure." She agreed and Mokuba smiled happily, glad he had at least someone to spend his time with. Writing homework didn't surely seem as much fun; not that he couldn't write it in a minute, but talking to a friend somehow seemed much more interesting than geometry.
They were sitting in front of the café on the main square of the Domino City, drinking juice and laughing about funny things that happened to them at school. Mokuba was laughing every moment Serenity told him about numerous gaffes her brother made while they were kids and still together, while Serenity cracked laughing hearing a story about how he once got stuck with his brother in an elevator.
Time passed quickly and Mokuba almost wheezed when he looked at his watch and saw what time it was. He realized that the time spent with Serenity passed quickly, and felt oddly happy for meeting her and spending the morning with her. For some odd reason, her smile and warmth managed to breeze his bad mood away like a fresh breath of wind. He presumed she had that kind of effect on people that managed to make them feel better and happy and...
"That's it!" He suddenly burst out, making Serenity jump slightly in her seat and other people around him to stare at him. Serenity opened her mouth to ask him what happened when he interrupted her hastily.
"Could you do me a favor?" He asked her, eagerness evident in his wide, violet orbs. Serenity was taken aback slightly with his question.
"What is it about?" she asked, still puzzled. Mokuba halted slightly before answering.
"It's about my brother, you know, Seto...I was wondering if you could help me cheer him up? He's been acting all grumpy and grouchy lately..."
Serenity was looking at him blankly for a moment before an image of older Kaiba came to her mind. She could remember him without a difficulty: tall, slender, with keen eyes and mysterious, closed up personality. She thought he was kind of cute but seeing him, being so cold made her shiver inwardly. But, then again – she never had a chance to meet him better...She was biting her lip, looking at the table and her empty glass then raised her head to look at the completely different person and wondered briefly how they could be related in the first place.
Mokuba had a buoyant look in his eyes, a look so full of hope and expectations that she had to give in.
"He's spending too much time in his office, huh?" she asked him finally and his face saddened briefly before he nodded.
"Yeah, he does...that's why I need you to try and make him see that there are other things in life besides laptops and papers and...stuff." There he stopped, his face now completely shadowed with dejection and sadness. Serenity, being a sap when it came to older brothers, decided to help.
"Okay," she said, making him snap out of his stupor, "I promise I'll do everything to make your brother cheer up!" she added and Mokuba's face lit up instantly.
"Really?" he asked, that hope shining now in his eyes. Serenity nodded, smiling warmly at him and Mokuba beamed at her.
"Thanks!" He exclaimed and before she could say anything else, grabbed her by the hand and yanked her away from the table. He practically threw the money to a bypassing waiter as Serenity yelped, being maneuvered around the tables hastily.
"Mokuba!" she screeched, "What is goi-"
"Come on, Serenity!" He cut in and started to run down the street, fishing his cell phone out of his pocket again for, what he thought a very good use – a ride back to the Kaiba Corporation.
Seto Kaiba was just in the middle of firing some poor soul when he heard a noise coming from outside the office. When he was about to call his secretary to ask her what the hell was going on, Mokuba stormed into the room, dragging someone behind him.
Kaiba stood up, looking strangely at his younger brother then at a girl who seemed familiar to him. He hung up the phone and then looked expectantly at Mokuba.
"I though you were writing your homework," he half – scolded him on which Mokuba smiled sheepishly.
"I already did that," he lied, glancing at a very exasperated Serenity who was still clutching her shirt and trying to get some air.
"What is this, Mokuba?" Kaiba asked him, irritated and on the verge of firing the secretary as well who was peeking from behind her desk and through the open doors.
"Don't you recognize her?" his brother asked, grinning at him. Kaiba reverted his glare from his brother to the girl standing in the middle of his office. He narrowed his eyes, already knowing that he had seen her somewhere before.
"It's Serenity, Seto!" Mokuba stretched his hands forward.
"Serenity?" Kaiba repeated, now glaring at her almost absentmindedly, his brain processing the gathered information.
Serenity almost regretted the decision of coming here when she saw how scrutinizing his glare was. She smiled nervously, clasping her hands in front of her.
"Uhm, hi," She greeted him silently, her voice echoing slightly through the large room. Kaiba was still trying to remember where he had seen her before when it finally clicked to him...the girl who was begging him to stop the plane and go back so they could drive some idiot named Bakura to hospital. Serenity...Serenity...Wheeler.
Kaiba's eyes widened slightly when he realized who had Mokuba brought with him. Without a moment of thinking, he growled and glared at Mokuba furiously.
"What is a Wheeler doing in my office?"
Mokuba winced slightly and Serenity gulped. She just realized two things:
First – the boy was very intimidating and second – she definitely regretted her decision now...
Uhm...this 'To be continued' phrase depends on you and you only. If you'd like me to continue, please drop me a review and tell me what you think. Also – I know it's a stupid title, so...any suggestions? Thanks!