Author's Notes: Response to Snare-chan's fanfic challenge – as ordered, Yami and Bakura go out to dinner. I'm not so good at romance-fics, but hopefully it came out all right. At any rate, hope you all like.
Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh! And now I'm going to go sulk. Thank you.
Warnings: Couple swears… mild shonen-ai in that I make lots of implications that they've been on such outings before. Possibly OOC. Overall, pretty safe.
Evenings in the Mutou household were well-renowned for being rather quiet, so it was to be expected that this particular evening would be no different. And excepting the sounds of lingering customers and the screech of a cat – cats always screech when something ominous is about to occur – the evening was quite peaceful indeed.
But that was about to change, for when you date an ancient Egyptian tomb-robber with a bit of a schizophrenic streak… well, 'peaceful' takes on a bit of a different meaning, and 'ominous' becomes rather commonplace.
"Mou hitori no Yugi! Someone—"
"Grandpa, just call him 'Yami'; it's easier!" Yugi called from back in the living area of the game shop.
"All right, fine. Yami! Someone's here to see you!"
The spirit he'd addressed took control of the body he shared with his young compatriot and strode into the front of the game shop, where Sugoroku was waiting.
"Who?" he asked, not seeing anyone initially.
Sugoroku pointed to the darkest corner of the room, where stood a very disgruntled, very angry, very scary-looking Bakura.
"I found this nice young man out front, weeding the lawn! He said he was here to pick you up," Sugoroku said, grinning, and Yami winced as Bakura visibly twitched at the use of the "n" word. "Considerate of him to tend the grass for us, though, don't you think?" the elder man plodded on.
"Ah… sure," Yami said, glancing at the white-haired spirit, who looked murderous; his fangs were showing. Yami grimaced. "Hey, why don't we get going—"
"Oh, yes, yes. Go have fun you two. And…" he lowered his voice a bit. "Make sure Yugi's home by a decent hour, ne?"
"Off you go, then!"
And so the couple found themselves on the sidewalk.
Bakura thrust a bright yellow bouquet of flowers into Yami's hands.
"Yours," he grumbled. Upon closer inspection – and much to his dismay – Yami could see that they were, indeed, the dandelions that had previously littered the lawn. They were tied with a black ribbon. How sweet.
"So…" Yami said, after a pause. Bakura looked up from where he'd been crushing an anthill beneath his shoe.
"Hn?" the former tomb-robber inquired.
"Where to?" Yami asked.
"Anywhere that DOESN'T sell salads," Bakura said darkly. "You're going to eat real food, and you're going to like it!"
"Salad IS real food—"
"Maybe for RABBITS!"
"And what about you? I'm sick of watching you eat steak. It's very unappetizing."
"Oh, is THAT why you never eat anything?"
Yami scowled. "I eat plenty!"
Bakura raised an eyebrow. "Nobody who 'eats plenty' could possibly fit into those pants you're wearing." Yami blushed absently. The pants WERE a bit tight… but that's only to be expected when one is wearing leather. Yami was just glad he'd worn his pair that laced-up the sides, else he'd likely be much more uncomfortable.
"Oh FINE!" he said huffily. "If I promise to get something other than a salad, will you promise not to order steak?"
Bakura considered this for a moment, before nodding. "In that case, though, we're going to get pizza." Yami cringed. Bakura smirked. "All that grease ought to do you some good."
"You're terribly cruel; did you know that?" Yami asked, pouting.
"You got the full deal," Bakura said, holding his arms out, grinning devilishly. "The good, the bad, and the sexy." Yami couldn't help snorting as Bakura – rather rudely – hailed a taxi. "Don't laugh, Pharaoh," Bakura warned, "I'm still in charge of your meal plan."
Yami pouted as they rode to the pizzeria. He pouted as they waited in line. He almost pouted as the greeter asked, "How many will be dining with you tonight?", but Bakura pinched his bum, said, "Table for two," and Yami pouted no more.
"Smoking or non?" the greeter inquired. Yami opened his mouth to speak, just as Bakura grunted, "Non."
Yami beamed as they were seated. He beamed as Bakura's amber eyes caught the light of the candle on the tabletop. He almost beamed when the menus came, but then he saw all the greasy foods listed therein, and Yami beamed no more.
As the waiter scuttled off to retrieve their drinks, Bakura grinned into his menu. If he couldn't get steak, he'd get the next best thing – a pizza with hamburger on it. Meanwhile, Yami was trying to seek out the healthiest thing he could. He was contemplating the vegetarian pizza when all of a sudden, something caught his eye. He blinked.
"Grin-dur?" he wondered aloud. "What in the world is a grin-dur?" Bakura rolled his eyes.
"It's pronounced 'grine-der', and it's a type of sandwich. Honestly, Pharaoh, it's like you've never eaten real food before." Yami scowled as their drinks arrived.
He, unsurprisingly, had ordered a water, and he took a small sip of it as the waiter pulled out a pad of paper and a pen. He flinched as Bakura took a swig of his own drink – a Bloody Mary. The waiter saved him from further stomach-lurching as he asked,
"Are you ready to order, sirs?"
Bakura looked at Yami. "You getting pizza?" Yami nodded and pointed out his choice on the menu, having decided on the vegetarian pizza after all. He'd try a grinder if bread wasn't so starchy, and mayonnaise wasn't so fattening…
"In that case," Bakura turned to the waiter, "We'll get one large pizza – half vegetarian, and half cheese and hamburger."
"Will that be all?"
"Your order will be ready shortly."
Bakura nodded curtly and the waiter left. He turned to find a terrified-looking Yami staring at him.
"What?" he asked, weirded-out by the fire-haired one's sudden mood-change.
"You… you're having them combine our orders into one?!" Yami asked, sounding appalled. Bakura blinked.
"What's wrong with that?"
"But yours is disgusting! It will contaminate mine!" Bakura gave him a pointed look.
"Tell me, Pharaoh – what in the WORLD did you eat back in Egypt?" Yami glared back at him.
"You know I can't tell you that," he said, and Bakura mentally smacked himself as Yami's eyes took on a melancholy look.
"Okay, okay, calm down…" he tried reasoning. "You know I didn't mean it literally…"
"That was still really insensitive," Yami said, scowling into his water glass.
The nursed their drinks in an awkward state of semi-silence as they waited for their food. Yami looked miserable, and Bakura stubbornly avoided looking at him, diverting his full attention to pushing the ice around in his glass. Finally, they both glanced at each other, and both tried to speak at once:
"Is there really—"
"Do you think—"
They both looked down. Yami was the first to recover.
"You go ahead."
"Nah, you started talking first; you go." Yami let out a small sound of irritation, but he relented.
"I was just going to ask if… there was really blood in your drink?" he sounded slightly ill at the prospect, and Bakura thought he saw a twinge of green in the other's pale complexion. He chuckled slightly, despite himself, and saw Yami start to pout again.
"No blood; it's made with tomato juice," he said quickly, trying to quell his laughter. A look of relief passed over Yami's face.
"Thank Amun," he murmured. Then he looked up at Bakura. "Your turn; what were you going to say?"
Bakura laughed again. "Actually, I was going to ask you if you thought Caesar salad actually tastes like Caesar." Yami looked at him in confusion.
"What do you mean?"
"I mean, do you think Caesar salad tastes anything like that swishy Roman bastard?"
Yami snorted into his glass as the waiter arrived with their pizza. As the man left once again, Yami made his reply.
"Oh yes," he said, grinning broadly. "It tastes just like olive leaves and linen."
Bakura snickered, then motioned to the pizza. "Well, it's not quite Caesar, but its popularity came from his country; dig in."
Yami tentatively reached for a slice, picking one that was well away from Bakura's unhealthy half. He eyed it warily, as Bakura sank his teeth into his first piece, amber eyes glinting happily. Yami shook his head and put his own slice on his plate, and, lifting his fork and knife, began cutting it into bite-sized pieces. Bakura gave him a look that reflected plainly his next words:
"You are MENTAL!"
Yami blinked. "What?" This time, Bakura smacked himself – physically – in the forehead.
"'What?' he asks… 'What?'" He snorted. "Pick it up and eat it with your goddamn hands!"
"Does it ever occur to you to act CIVIL?" Yami asked, amethyst eyes flashing.
"This IS civil!" Bakura protested. "Look around you – everyone eats it like this! That's half the fun!"
"Eating isn't supposed to be fun," Yami stated matter-of-factly. Bakura gave him an incredulous look.
"You don't get out enough. Here," he said suddenly, startling the other. "Open your mouth."
Yami looked at him suspiciously. "Why?"
Bakura glowered at him. "Just do it! And close your eyes, too, while you're at it."
Yami knew it was no use to protest; better to do it willingly than for Bakura to unhinge his jaw manually. He shuddered at the thought, feeling queasy. But he did as Bakura had told him.
When Yami's eyes were closed, Bakura tore off a small bit of his own pizza, making sure to get one with some meat on it, and popped it in the other spirit's mouth.
"Eat it." he demanded, and Yami complied in silence, although he didn't look happy about the idea. When Bakura was certain the other had swallowed the morsel, he said calmly, "You can open your eyes now." Amethyst eyes opened and blinked at him. He frowned. "What do you think?"
"I think I'll stick to salad," Yami replied, perfectly deadpan. Bakura contemplated shaking him.
"You are HOPELESS!"
"And you're cute when you're being sullen."
"T-t-thief lords are NOT 'cute'!"
"Well then you must not be a thief lord."
Bakura looked absolutely horrified, before his shoulders slumped and he began to sulk. Yami had a nice laugh, and then he reached across the table, grabbed Bakura's unfinished slice of pizza, and took the largest bite he could manage. Bakura stared at him.
"You TRICKED me!!!" he cried, shooting Yami an accusatory glare.
"But you've never eaten anything fattening when we've been out before!"
Yami shrugged and took another bite of Bakura's pizza. "I prefer healthy things, but I'm not a complete nut."
"THAT is still up for debate," Bakura said, glowering at the shorter spirit as he finished off the slice and licked his fingers, before dabbing at his lips with his napkin.
"Well?" Yami asked expectantly, and Bakura tensed, sensing he was being challenged.
"'Well?' what?" he shot back.
"I tried yours and tolerated it; it's only fair that you even the odds." Bakura could have kicked himself for falling into such a trap. But he wasn't going to let the former king upstage him…
"Fine," he growled, snatching Yami's plate and reaching for one of the cut-up pieces.
"Uh-uh-uh!" Yami cried quickly. "I want you to act like a dignified person and use that fork." Bakura cast him a shriveling glare.
"I'll show you how to use a fork, you self-righteous little—"
"How is everything, sirs?"
The waiter chose that fine moment to reappear to check on the duo. Bakura stabbed sullenly at the vegetable-laden pizza and forked a piece into his mouth. A small smile quirked the corners of Yami's mouth.
"Everything's fine," the Pharaoh replied, and the waiter made himself scarce.
When Bakura had forced down every last bite of Yami's slice of pizza, they both immediately reached for their own orders; Yami worked on cutting his vegetable pizza into pieces, while Bakura crammed his own meat-covered slice in his mouth, tearing at it viciously and sinking his fangs in. Yami raised an eyebrow.
"It wasn't THAT horrible, was it?"
Bakura twitched slightly.
"Just shut up and eat, Pharaoh."
They lapsed into tense silence. They ate quickly, both wanting very much for the other to re-initiate conversation, but both unwilling to do so themselves. The two glanced up occasionally, each only to find that the other was watching him. During one such instance – in which Yami caught Bakura watching him – Yami flushed slightly and finally pushed his plate away.
"If you want to leave, just say so," he admonished, sounding upset. Bakura shot him a chagrined look.
"Same to you." Yami looked down at his hands, but not before Bakura saw the hurt clearly reflected in the other's amethyst eyes. The fire-haired spirit always tried so hard to make these little outings – their dates – work… Bakura sighed, blowing a stray strand of hair out of his face. However, he was saved from having to apologize as the waiter appeared once again.
"Would you care for dessert, or will that be all?" the man inquired. Bakura took one look at Yami's glum demeanor and made his decision tout de suite.
"I think we'll have a large strawberry milkshake…" he paused, and a small grin spread over his features. "Two straws."
Yami blinked up at him as the waiter hurried away. Bakura gave him a carefully teasing look.
"What's the matter? Afraid to share a peasant's drink?" Yami flushed again.
"That's not what I meant—"
"Yes…?" Bakura drawled.
"I…" Yami swallowed, "I just wondered how you knew." Bakura paused momentarily at the unexpected reply.
"You're not going to appreciate this, but – knew what?" Yami's brow furrowed.
"That I always thought it would be romantic to share a drink with you. It would have been forbidden, after all…"
"Our whole relationship would have been forbidden – what's so special about a drink?"
"It's just so… ordinary!" Yami said, trying to put his thoughts into words. "We would not have even been able to share the same cup of water if we were stranded in the desert and dehydrating! The Pharaoh consorting with a common thief… what would the court have thought?!"
The pair chuckled as their dessert arrived, the tension between them gone as quickly as it had come. But Bakura had to get in a small jibe:
"Too bad I was no common thief, eh?" Yami rolled his eyes.
"Are you going to help me drink this thing or not?" he asked, changing the subject.
After a short but heated debate over who got to use which straw, the two set about sharing their milkshake. Complaints of 'You're hogging it, Pharaoh!', 'Damn it, Bakura, stop banging into my forehead!', and the like could be heard by the restaurant's other patrons, but the couple paid them no mind.
Finally, upon its completion – and another bout of bickering over who had drunk the most (an argument that Yami won, although Bakura wasn't sure how) – Bakura called for the bill. Yami lounged back in the booth.
"That was good, but I must admit I'm glad not to be the one paying." Bakura gave him an odd look.
"What do you mean, you're not paying?" Yami shot him a nervous glance.
"But you told me YOU would!" Bakura scowled.
"So let me get this straight: neither of us came prepared to pay for the meal?"
Yami shook his head, anxiety plain in his eyes. "What do we do?"
Bakura sighed, leaning back to mimic Yami's own relaxed posture. "Well, I suppose we'll have to go and wash dishes," he said with a shrug. Yami shot forward in his seat, his eyes wide.
"You must be JOKING! They can't make us do something that… that…"
"Menial?" Bakura supplied casually.
Bakura smirked slightly.
"Oh, yes, it doesn't bother YOU!" Yami cried indignantly as Bakura continued to look nonchalant. "You're USED to this kind of thing! I—"
The waiter picked yet another opportune moment to make his appearance, and he set the bill down before Bakura, who – without missing a beat – promptly retrieved his wallet from his pocket and started removing bills. Only after he had placed the amount – plus tip – on the table did he glance up to savor the look of utter astonishment on his date's face.
Bakura's face lit up in a grin as Yami attempted to stammer a coherent sentence.
"Spit it out, Pharaoh."
"You LIED to me!"
"Tricked you, is more what I'd call it." That did it...Yami was immediately on the defensive. "You didn't trick me."
"You did not."
"I tricked you, and you know it."
Yami was looking dismal by this point, but Bakura was elated. He had just tricked the Game King! That was quite a victory, by anyone's standards.
"Lighten up," he told the former monarch. "Which is worse? Being tricked by your date, or being tricked by an enemy?"
Yami straightened his posture slightly and gave a derisive sniff. "First of all, I wouldn't know, because I've never been tricked before. Second of all, it would probably be better to be tricked by an enemy, because then I would have no qualms about sending them to the Shadow Realm." He gave Bakura a pointed look; Bakura held his hands up in an innocent gesture. Yami stood. "I'm going home."
Bakura rolled his eyes, although he got up and followed the shorter spirit to the doors. "Come off it, Pharaoh. It's not that big a deal. If we're going to keep doing this, I've got to take what I can get."
"Oh yes, because it's SO important to have one-up on me," Yami sneered, his voice laced with enough sarcasm to burn through metal.
"Maybe it IS."
"How in the world could that possibly have any significance? Unless you still haven't gotten over... whatever it is that made you hate me before..." Yami trailed off, a sudden, nervous look darkening his expression. It made Bakura's stomach clench.
Before he could say anything, Yami turned to him, a scared look in his eyes.
"You're... you're not..." Yami looked up at him helplessly. But Bakura knew what he was getting at. He went cold, but couldn't bring himself to reassure. It wasn't his nature. But he had to say SOMETHING...
"What exactly are you trying to imply, Pharaoh?" he asked, narrowing his eyes for effect. The best defense was often a good offense…
Yami stared up at him for several moments, and Bakura wondered if he'd let the subject drop.
"I'm..." Yami sighed. "I'm sorry. I'm just being paranoid. It's just strange, that's all."
"Apology accepted. Now let's go, before that old geezer has a heart attack over you having little Yugi out on a school night," Bakura said, exasperation plain in his voice. Yami merely nodded as Bakura hailed a second taxi.
They were silent the entirety of the drive back to the game shop. Yami stared at his hands, lost in his own thoughts; Bakura glowered out the window. When they arrived, Bakura was seriously beginning to consider remaining in the cab and letting Yami walk himself to the door, but decided it would just cause more problems than he cared to deal with. When they reached the front door, Yami stopped, and Bakura watched him; waiting.
Bakura rolled his eyes. Snatching the shorter spirit's arm, he spun Yami around to face him. Yami blinked in surprise, but before he could speak, the former tomb-robber's lips were on his, silencing him. After a moment, he relinquished his hold.
"There. Now stop moping."
Yami looked startled, but managed to hide it a second later when he commented,
"You know, if Yugi's grandfather saw that, I'll never hear the end of it."
"And I get to pick the restaurant next time."
Yami smirked victoriously.
The game shop's door swung open.
"You're back!" Sugoroku said, grinning broadly. With more strength than a man of his age and diminutive size should be capable of, he pulled Yami inside, then turned to Bakura. "Thank you for bringing him home on time." Bakura shrugged. Yami frowned as Bakura turned and started away.
"Um… good night, Bakura…?"
Bakura glanced over his shoulder. "Good night…" Pause. "…Yami."
And Sugoroku shut the door.
Quiet returned to the Mutou household once again.
End Notes: Eh heh. Yeah. I dislike the ending. x . x;
Opinions? Constructive criticism? Rants? Death threats? You know where to leave 'em. XD