Don't Take Chances With Love

"Why do you have a poster of Albert Einstein on your wall?" Ryou asked, curling up against his lover's back, one hand stroking down Duke's slightly sweaty chest.

Tossing his severely mussed hair out of his eyes, Duke laughed and said, "You are the master of arbitrary and non-sequitorial pillow talk, aren't you?"

Ryou just smirked slightly and said, "And you have a habit of answering a question with a question, Dev, but don't think that's going to distract me from my course."

Duke just smiled and shook his head. Looking up at the poster on the wall over his desk, he said, "Old Einstein up there had a lot of good proverbs. 'Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world,' is a good one, and true, too. I also like 'Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one'and 'Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former'. But my favorite is 'God does not play dice with the Universe.' Mostly because it's so ironic."

One snow-white eyebrow rose into equally snowy hair, and Ryou said, "Ironic?"

Duke inclined his head. "Ironic. Mostly because I am positive that our lives are a game to whatever higher power is up there controlling things, and messing with our heads at the same time. How else do you explain all the Egyptian yamis floating around here in good old Japan?"

Ryou laughed and shrugged.

Shaking his hair out of his eyes, Duke said, "Anyway, even if God – or whoever – doesn't play games with us mere mortals, that's not the point. God may not play dice with the universe – but he or she doesn't have to. Because we mere mortals gamble with everything."

"We do?" Ryou asked, surprised.

"Yami plays Shadow Games for people's souls… Kaiba dueled against Pegasus to get his brother back… Joey made that bet with me that ended up with him wearing a dog suit…" Duke smirked slightly in remembrance before turning serious again. "We gamble with our hearts, our lives, even our very souls. There's a song, I forget the name, that goes 'Life is a gamble, and I'm still in the game'. Life is a gamble, and if you're not willing to risk it all, you're not really living…not in the game. The game of life."

"Like the gamble I made when I told you how I felt about you, Dev?" Ryou asked perceptively.

Taking one of Ryou's hands in his own, Duke kissed it and said, "Exactly. I like a person who's willing to take chances."

Ryou chuckled. "Well, I'm not exactly a thrill seeker, but I don't let the odds get in the way when I want something. Or someone," he whispered seductively, before capturing Duke's lips in a searing kiss.

"Exactly," Duke breathed out, once they pulled apart for air. "And you're definitely the only thing I'm not willing to gamble with."

"I won't take chances with your love, either, Dev," Ryou said sincerely, pressing their lips back together in silent confirmation of his vow.