Calai'di–Okay, formal stuff. Gods I hate doing this.

I don't own Yugioh or Ryou Bakura.

This is from his point of view. And we're going on the presumption that his mother and sister did die when he was younger and he's just living in denial now.

Chapter 1: Meet my Friends

I guess it started years ago when my mother and sister, Amane, died in a car crash. Father and I had to watch as the paramedics brought their bloody, mangled bodies into the hospital. I was too young to understand what was happening, and Father told me they would be all right, though I remember him squeezing my hand very tightly when they were brought in. I began to cry when I saw them; I knew Father was wrong, and he'd never been wrong before. If I couldn't believe him, who could I believe? That realization hurt me more than anything else, and I cried for days afterward. I forced myself into believing that they lived, and for years I thought Mother and Amane had just moved to live somewhere else. Father only fed this delusion, fearing I might fall into depression if I realized the truth.

That day, as I watched the doctors try to save Mother and Amane, the first voice appeared in my mind. He calmed me down and soothingly explained everything to me, knowing a lot more than I did at the time. I didn't push him away or reject him or anything; I was to young to understand that it usually wasn't good to hear voices in your head. Besides, he helped me when none one else could or would; I was grateful that he came to me. I named him Taro.

Taro and I were to best friends you could imagine; we did everything together, though that might have been because e was in my head. He was always there for me when I called or when I needed him. I did sometimes wish he was a real person, not just a voice, so he could hold me when I was sad or so we could play game more easily, but his wisdom made up for his lack of a body. And that year passed without incident.

I never really had any other friends when I was younger. I mean, what friend I did have had other friends they'd rather be with. I was a sort of 'fall-back friend'; someone people would play with when their real friends were too busy, but usually not otherwise. I might have been my hair, or it might have been my mind, I don't know, but I found myself alone a lot. So instead of real, living friends, I had the voices in my head to talk to. After a few years, Taro wasn't the only voice. Soon, and in order, I had Rhiamon, Kieko, Kiryu, Palladin, and Akira, giving me a grand total of six voices, and they were all smarter than me.

Rhiamon was the witch, and she was good with spiritual matters; if I ever had troubled dreams, visions, or odd bad luck, I could ask her for advice. Kieko was sweet and never fought with any of the others, no matter what happened. Kiryu was a social person and pretty stuck up, and he always knew just what to do if I got picked on at school. Palladin was the warrior and undisputed blade master of the group, always giving me tips on how to do better in gym or what to do if I got picked on outside of school. Akira, the last voice to appear, was what you'd call 'psycho'; he scared me, and didn't talk to him much.

For years, these were the only true friends I had, since Father had started to move around a few times. It never occurred to me that they might have been spirit guides trying to help me; I didn't think about it that much. But soon, Taro and I had grown as close as brothers; I couldn't imagine living without him, or my other friends.

And then, Father went off to Egypt for a very important archeological dig, leaving me alone in our apartment. For those few days, I didn't talk to anyone but the voices, and that might have sealed my fate. When my father came back, he gave me a golden pendant that he'd bought at a bazaar; it was like a large ring with five spikes hanging off the sides and a triangle in the middle. In relief on the triangle was a modified Udjat eye, or Eye of Horus. I thought it was beautiful.

All of my friends immediately told me to get rid of the ring, that there was something sinister about it, but for some reason, I didn't listen to their wisdom this time. Maybe it was because Akira agreed with the rest and I didn't trust him. I began to wear the pendant all the time, every day; I guess it must have had me entranced. But somehow, for the first time in my life, I had real, living friends.