A/N: Presenting the final chapter. I apologize for just leaving this story hanging on the last chapter for all this time; simply put, I hate this chapter, but just need to finally get it out. There was originally the intention to include an epilogue, but it is unnecessary to the plot and frankly I do not have the time anymore to provide it here in a timely manner. Maybe I should have ended the story with the previous chapter, but I felt you all deserved some fluff and, erm, brotherly introductions.
Thank you to all readers who have stuck it out. A very special thank you to all who review, past, present, and future. Your words of praise, constructive criticism, suggestion, and encouragement are what got me coming back to this story time and time again. You guys are the best.
If you've followed this story from beginning to end and haven't reviewed, please consider leaving a few words after finishing this chapter to let me know what you thought! I have every intention of returning to this story on occasion to make corrections and improve upon it.
Please enjoy, and thanks for sticking it out!
Disclaimer: Yu-Gi-Oh! and all related characters belong to Konami and are the creative property of Kazuki Takahashi. This is a work of fanfiction.
Seto jerked awake after some time, momentarily disoriented and unsure how many hours had passed. His heavy gaze slipped to the girl still seated in the chair beside him, her head tilted forward uncomfortably as she dosed. Her hand had at some point returned to her own lap, and Seto lamented its absence.
He had wondered for a moment what it was that could have drawn him from his slumber when he heard a commotion from out in the hallway. Voices were arguing as they drew closer.
"Sir? Ah! You are not allowed into that room! Sir, do you understand- Sir! Someone stop him!"
Kaiba narrowed his eyes at the door, tensing slightly. He heard a second voice, right outside in the passage.
"If you think any of you quacks are stopping me from getting to my sister, then you're out of your minds, ya hear?!" Kaiba's formerly soaring spirits plummeted. He braced himself as the door to his room slammed open. "Serenity!"
The girl in question jumped in her seat, suddenly jerked awake by the bang. She looked at Seto first with bleary, bloodshot eyes, then at the source of the racket, disoriented just as he had been only moments ago. When her eyes landed on her brother, though, they filled with happy tears as she stood slowly from her chair.
The blond young man moved into the room after a pause, the relief on his face palpable despite the stunning sight of his sister, white-haired but seemingly healthy. He rushed to her, wrapping her securely in his strong arms and burying his face in her snowy hair.
"I was so worried about you. Are you okay?"
Unable to respond around the lump in her throat, she merely nodded into his shirt. He exhaled heavily and shakily.
Then, he looked at Kaiba and narrowed his eyes in accusation.
"You. You have a lot of explaining to do, Moneybags."
The patient in the bed leveled a glacial stare at the blonde. The tension skyrocketed, but Serenity's muffled voice spoke into his chest before any real sparks could fly as she wriggled in his hold.
"He saved me, Joey. He's the only reason I'm alive right now," she assured him.
Surprised, her brother pulled back and looked down at her imploring face. Before he could say more, another voice spoke from the doorway.
"Seto!" They all turned to look at Mokuba, who was followed into the room by the shorter Yugi. Kaiba's icy glower melted the moment he heard his brother's voice.
"Hey, Kid," he greeted tenderly as the teenager hurried to his side, reaching down and taking his older brother's hand in both of his own. The plastic tubes feeding into his arm shifted and clacked together lightly at the disturbance.
"I knew you'd be okay. I knew-…" Mokuba's words choked in his throat, overcome with emotion at seeing his brother awake. He looked like he had not slept in days, bogged down as he was by both his brother's condition and the burden of the Company. Seto's hand itched to pat Mokuba atop his dark head of hair as he had done so many times in their lives, but his reclined position prevented him from making the brotherly gesture on his now quite-tall sibling. He settled for squeezing his hand firmly in reassurance.
"I'm okay now. I promise, Mokuba."
The teen looked at him happily through watery eyes. He caught any tears before they could fall, certain that he was too old to be crying in front of his big brother.
"I'm quite eager to hear the story behind this, Kaiba," said Yugi from his corner of the room. Seto recognized the crisper inflection of his voice; the Spirit of the Puzzle had traded places with his host. Kaiba was somewhat bothered to know that he could tell the difference, now. "How exactly did your comatose body find its way to Egypt in a single night? And how in the world did Serenity get here, too?"
Petulant as usual in the face of Yugi's questioning, Kaiba did not feel like giving up information so freely. He responded instead with a question of his own. "More importantly, why on Earth are you even here? Last I checked, you're not related to anyone in this room, Mutou."
The Spirit used Yugi's body to make a face at Kaiba's obstinacy. Questioning the young CEO was still like pulling teeth. It seemed little had changed.
"That was my call," Mokuba said, succeeding in keeping the apologetic note in his voice relatively smothered. "I got a phone call from Yugi last night. He said Joey's sister was missing," he glanced at Serenity then back to his brother, "and asked if anything about your condition had changed at the hospital. I had no idea what the two had to do with one another, but I told him that you were the same," he said, looking between the girl and his brother as if he still was not quite sure what existed between the two. "Granted, I probably could have acted a bit more concerned about Serenity, but it was the middle of the night," he admitted, sending the girl an embarrassed look.
"Then, no less than half an hour later, the hospital called and said that you'd gone missing, too," he said to his brother gravely. "That got my attention." He sent Yugi a look. "I called Yugi back up, the three of us met at the mansion," he said, gesturing to Joey in inclusion, "and after some serious panicking, we were in the company jet and on our way to Luxor as soon as we got the call from the hospital here," he finished.
So that's where we are, Serenity thought to herself. The city name struck a bell with her as she recalled learning from Bakura that he had spent his summer near this city. She shuddered, but her brother mistook the action. Joey wrapped his arms more tightly around his sister and addressed Kaiba.
His tone brooked no argument. Kaiba glared at the Mutt's brazenness, then softened his look as it lowered to his sister. She met his eyes, and he noted how it looked as if more hazel was returning to the bright blue irises in slices. It was… exotic. After a moment she gave him a small nod of permission - and encouragement.
Seto gave a long-suffering sigh and began.
He abbreviated the story as much as possible and perhaps cut out a bit too much of the supernatural aspect. Yugi already knew, after all, and would probably be more than happy to fill in the details once he had them in his own captive audience. Kaiba was certain that despite his modern incarnation's modesty, the Pharaoh simply loved being the center of attention.
Serenity piped in on occasion, having returned to her seat at the side of his bed in her fatigue. Her brother's hand remained on her shoulder in a possessive gesture. Seto itched to touch her again, but no amount of medication would impair his judgment enough to make a fool of himself in front of his rival and Serenity's brother. He kept his hands to himself as the two of them worked on telling the story together. She was very adaptable, Kaiba noticed, and she was sure to only share as much as he intended. He was grateful.
His voice carried little inflection, and for all the fantastic things he described with her help, he might have been talking about company stocks and network redesigns. Throughout the course of the tale, everyone else had grown silent. Mokuba looked mildly horrified, Yugi calculating, and Joey...
Joey's mouth had gradually dropped open into a gape of disbelief. His hand was still resting on his sister's shoulder, but the look on his face was just stupefied. It gave Kaiba a small amount of pleasure to see him so dumbfounded.
"We got out, the military found us, and we were brought to the hospital," he finished, leveling his gaze on Serenity. He longed for when it was just the two of them in the room, tired of having an audience. She gave him a small smile in return, and he wondered if she felt the same way.
The silence that followed his retelling of events was so thorough, it was comical.
He kept a straight face as he waited for the first reaction. His eyes met Serenity's with a touch of amusement, seen only by her. She returned it with a tiny dimple on one cheek.
Taking her in fully, though, he began to frown as he noted how exhausted and bedraggled she appeared. Noticing his scrutiny and budding concern, Serenity staunched his worry with an attempt at a reassuring look. It was impressive what they could communicate even without words, as if they had known each other for a lifetime. Kaiba thought with bemusement that it was actually several lifetimes. In fact, if there was anyone that could get him to believe in Fate, it was this girl. She broke their gaze and craned her neck to look at her brother standing over her shoulder.
"Uhm... The end?" she tacked on in a small voice.
Joey physically shook his head, as if doing so would get the gears turning again. He shut his gaping mouth and looked down at his sister and back at Kaiba before speaking again.
"...Wow. Well, shit."
Kaiba rolled his eyes and responded.
"Eloquent as ever, Mutt." He shifted on his bed, clearly done with this visit and eager for he and the girl to get some rest. "Now, if you'd so kindly get the hell out of my room, I'd like for us to be able to recover without an audience," he said, referring to himself and Serenity.
The unintended implications flew over Joey's head, but Mokuba and Yugi were far shrewder.
Yugi took it in stride with a small smile, but it was not until Serenity's small noise of protest as Joey shepherded her out of the chair and away that Mokuba's eyes lit up in sudden realization. Seto's small, nearly unnoticeable pout as he watched Joey leave with his sister sealed the deal. Mokuba could hardly believe it, but felt giddiness bubble in his chest as he realized that his older brother may have finally discovered the opposite sex. Of course, all it took was two near-death experiences and a five-thousand year old plot for revenge, but Seto Kaiba was never one to do "understated". Mokuba was drawn out of his musings by his brother.
"What are you still doing here?" he barked at Yugi, annoyed. Undaunted, the young man simply uncrossed his arms with a low chuckle and moved to exit the room.
"Looks like your true challenge may be just beginning, Kaiba," he offered cryptically. He exited with, "I'm glad you're both well," unknowingly echoing the words of the Ishtar woman who preceded his visit. The door stayed open behind him. Seto refrained from childishly demanding an explanation, knowing very well to what Yugi was boldly referring. Screw it, he thought bitterly. I refuse to act like some blushing fourteen year old, no matter how much the shrimp baits me. The knowing look his little brother was giving him, though, gave him pause.
"What?" he mumbled with a barely-there blush. Mokuba grinned fully, and Seto dreaded the toothy, mischievous edge to it.
"Nothing." Mokuba decided to drop the subject, and Kaiba took it as a blessing. He knew his brother better than anyone, though, and he was certain this was not the end of it.
For the next few minutes, the brothers spoke to one another in low voices, reassuring each other with their presence until Seto finally succumbed to his exhaustion and fell asleep.
Serenity sat tiredly in her seat, staring blankly and somewhat forlornly out the small porthole and at the airplane's wing. Tens of thousands of feet below, some mountainous countryside slowly worked its way by, a pattern of white clouds dotting the scene like a painting. She had never flown before, and she was childishly fascinated by the fact that the ground looked nothing like the color-blocked maps she had seen on the walls in grade school. National borders were invisible from her perspective, she mused. She watched it all pass through glazed eyes, unblinking.
The ambient noise within the cabin dulled the sound of her brother's snores from the seat ahead of her. She could see Yugi sleeping soundly in the seat across the aisle. She was the only one still awake in the rear cabin.
She had not seen Seto for any length of time since that moment in his hospital room, and certainly not alone. Days had already passed, and she felt his absence more keenly than she expected she would.
Against the recommendations of his doctors, Kaiba had himself released early from the hospital, obtusely insisting that he could get better treatment closer to Tokyo and generally insulting the expertise of the professionals seeing to him. Serenity suspected he just wanted to return to normalcy. The entire group benefitted, though, when they were all provided a ride on the company jet back home to Japan. Joey had not been happy about it at first and vocally expressed his suspicions.
"He's gonna hold this damn ride over my head for years, just wait." Beyond hovering around Serenity like a mother hen, she had noticed the cloud of suspicion in his eyes whenever conversation turned to Kaiba. She knew her brother was denser than many of his friends, but he was by no means an idiot.
Yugi had been noticeably silent on the matter. A small smile peeked through Serenity's empty gaze out the window as she recalled the series of moments over the past few days.
"It's not quite the same, is it?" She started at the deep voice next to her, drawn from her musings quite suddenly.
Turning and looking up, she saw none other than Seto staring down at her. He stood tall in the aisle, and she had to crane her neck to see his face. Her idle thoughts came to a screeching halt at this sudden visit, and butterflies exploded to life in the pit of her stomach at the surprise she felt. Her mouth was suddenly dry, and she felt extremely self-conscious.
"Huh?" she responded intelligently. She saw a hint of a smile whisper across his face.
"Flying," he answered, looking past her and out the porthole she had been staring through moments earlier. "It's not the same in an airplane, is it?" Her face scrunched up in confusion, unsure as to what he was referring. She followed his line of sight to the clouds outside.
This time around, his presence triggered a sense of déjà vu. Flashes of ocean spray and mountains bathed in moonlight sparked across her memory, and she looked back up at him in surprise.
"No. It isn't," she answered finally, wonderment lacing her voice. Nothing compared to diving through thunderheads on massive leathery wings, wind whistling past her ears. She felt a pang of what seemed like nostalgia, and wondered if Seto felt it, too. She had not dreamt of flight again since the night before her kidnapping, and was afraid that she could not, now that Seto no longer haunted her dreams. Still, she was grateful for the alternative: the living and breathing man standing next to her.
"How are you feeling?" he asked as he slowly lowered himself to one knee in the aisle next to her. He winced as the difficult movement brought him pain, and he used the chair in front of her to support his descent. She heard Joey's snores sputter with a snort before starting up again in earnest.
"Pretty good, all things considered." His proximity made her bashful, and she cursed herself. Her hands fiddled in her lap as one of his gripped her armrest in an attempt at stability. His knuckles were scabbed over from his fistfight, one of the many healing injuries she noted as she swept her eyes over him with concern. His black eye had receded somewhat, but the dark bruise had been replaced with ugly yellow mottling. Pressed slacks and crisp new button-down aside, he still looked like crap. She decided to check. "What about you?"
"Great," he growled without missing a beat. She drew back slightly at the abrupt answer, but met his clear blue eyes for the first time in days. What she saw there was not sarcasm or irony, but instead pure, unadulterated honesty. She realized how amazing it must have been for him to be alive and flying home mere days after having accepted eternity, and suddenly she understood his impassioned response. She smiled at him happily.
He was the first to turn away this time. Still on one knee and just below eye level with her, he gazed around slightly awkwardly. He seemed to be searching for something to say, or perhaps for the words with which to say it. She could smell the light, masculine scent of his cologne as it wafted around her, and she took it in as greedily as discretion would allow.
Serenity waited for him to gather his thoughts, trying not to be caught examining his profile. Even bruised as he was, he was quite handsome, as long as one did not mind his almost perpetual glower. He was lucky that Bakura had not landed a blow to break his nose, she thought to herself. Her teasing at the mall that one time did him little justice; he was gorgeous. She flushed anew, wondering how the cold cabin could suddenly seem so warm.
When he spoke again, it was with such a cocky confidence that she almost wondered if she had imagined his reluctance.
"How about you ditch these losers and come up front with us?" he all-but-demanded. He sounded like an antihero from an eighties movie, Serenity mused. She figured with some humor that it suited him, given his partiality for leather and metal studs. Still, there remained something in his tone that allowed for her refusal.
Biting her lower lip to hide her smile and spare his pride, Serenity listened to her brother's machine-like racket while at the same time looking over Kaiba's head at the sleeping Yugi. They certainly would not miss her for a while, yet. She met his blue eyes with her own now-calico ones and pushed her white hair behind her ear.
With her other hand, she unbuckled her seatbelt with a click and a grin at Seto. He smirked back. She noted the trace of relief in his eyes as he stood back up with her. She was surprised to think he harbored any fear of rejection; he should have known her better than that by now.
Ignoring her instinct to help him up as he pushed through the pain and stood, she waited patiently. Once upright, he took a step backward in the aisle, making room for her to step out as he offered his hand, palm up and with surprisingly gentlemanly consideration. She looked down at it with some astonishment at first, but recovered quickly. Smiling up at him, she placed her hand in his own and held her breath as his warm fingers enclosed around hers securely. For some reason, she expected him to have cold hands. She remembered they had been that way when he had grasped her hand at the Obon festival. She was pleased to be wrong.
She willed the butterflies in her stomach to quell their fluttering, embarrassed and certain that he must be able to sense them. She hoped her grin hid her blush, not knowing how endearing he actually found it. His face was practically set in stone, and there was little she could discern from his familiar taciturn expression. It was only the hint of an upward quirk to his lips that revealed his own eagerness. She snapped her attention away from his lips before she could be caught staring again. Not that last time's consequences were terrible or anything...
She stepped out into the aisle and let him guide her forward. She was extremely aware of his tall presence behind her, and she could actually feel the warmth radiating from his body. Her heartbeat sped up. When he reached around her to unlatch the hatch to the forward space, it took every ounce of self-control she had not to make an unflattering noise. She was certain that he was brushing up against her far more than necessary. She felt slightly giddy.
"Bienvenue," he said as he opened the door for her, his warm breath ghosting across her ear and sending shivers down her spine. It came out hoarsely, and she struggled to hide her involuntary quiver.
She vaguely wondered why she was reacting like this around him. She spent days being followed around by a dead man without problem, joking, divulging, and even flirting with little thought of consequence. Set a warm, living version of that same man on her, though, and she was putty. It just wasn't fair!
As the door swung open before her, she peeked in curiously. The soundproofing was better in this part of the plane, she noticed, and a muted hush fell around her as she entered.
The lighting was dimmer, and she thought this forward cabin felt cozier than the generic beige of where she had been sitting with her brother and Yugi. An executive-style desk was built-in to one bulkhead, while a small reception space was craftily spaced out in the cramped area. Behind one of the small sofas was a tall fish tank filled with colorful, exotic little creatures. The opulence boggled her mind, but she appreciated the soothing blues that the deceptively small decoration cast across the space. She walked up to it to examine it more closely, eyes filled with wonder as cerulean hues danced across her hair and face.
Noticing something, she cast a cursory glance around and asked, "Where's Mokuba?" Seto sounded distracted as he answered.
"He's working on his pilot's license, so he's trying to get some hours in."
Serenity blinked once, then asked with incredulity, "On a jetliner?"
Kaiba just shrugged and moved to sit on the couch. She felt pity well in her gut as she watched how much trouble the movement gave him, but the relief on his face once he was seated made her smile.
After a moment of recovery, he looked up from the floor and at her through his bangs, then at the empty seat next to him on the couch.
Serenity took a small sharp breath, the butterflies returning full force. She understood the unspoken invitation and nervously moved to sit next to him. Her bottom lip suffered under the torture of her relentless teeth. She finally sat on the edge of the sofa, knees held together primly and hands nervously fiddling with the cuffs of her shorts.
The silence built between them awkwardly as she struggled to think of something to say to arguably the most powerful businessman in the world. She was almost relieved when Kaiba spoke first instead.
"Are you… uncomfortable?" he asked her with some unease. She noted the hint of insult lacing his voice and panicked somewhat at his distress.
"No, no!" she reassured, waving her hands in front of her apologetically and realizing that she was not making things very easy. "This place is really nice. Your plane is incredible!" She bit her lip and furrowed her brow, knowing she owed him an explanation but unwilling to give him one without first choosing her words very carefully. She took a deep breath, then let it out in a controlled measure through her nose. She began nervously.
"It's just that…" She paused, unsure how to continue or even where to start. Her nerves were taking over, and the pressure in her gut was making it hard to make any decisions. Any longer and she knew her courage would fail her completely. She figured his patience was likely waning, though, so Serenity finally – and somewhat carelessly – decided to abandon her hesitation and threw caution to the wind.
"The first time I met you, I couldn't stand you," she told him honestly. She paused slightly following the admission, but when he did not react she hurried to fill the silence, afraid she might have truly insulted him.
"The second time I met you, you were dead." This got a twitch out of his left eye, and she took solace in the fact that his mask had cracked somewhat. She barreled through. "You were dead, and you were suddenly so much less intimidating. I felt like you were actually easier to handle like that. I mean, it was like – don't get me wrong, here, but – it was like I could almost write you off as a figment of my imagination." She rushed to address his increasingly indignant expression. "I knew you weren't, of course! It's just that… Seto, you're kind of larger-than-life in person. When you're solid," she amended. "I mean, look all around us!" She gestured with her hands. "We're in your private jet, for crying out loud!"
His glower softened perceptibly, and his intense gaze shifted off to the side, away from Serenity. She continued.
"I… I don't know what to do, Seto. You're not some phantom following my every move, anymore. I know you have other priorities. You're such an important person and I… When we get back home, I just go back to being this little girl struggling to graduate high school and figure out what to do with my life. Who apparently has an all-powerful dragon stuck somewhere inside my brain, or soul, or liver or something," she added in a higher pitch. She was still having trouble coming to terms with that.
Seto's smirked wryly at her last sentence, silently listening to her rant and truly beginning to recognize the source of her reluctance.
"I guess what I'm trying to say is… I'm scared. I've only truly known you for a couple of weeks, and I've liked you for even less time than that. But, despite all of that, I'm pretty sure I'd be willing to do absolutely anything for you, and I don't understand why." Her confession hung in the air between the two like a buzzing cloud of locusts, and it was as she said it that she realized it was true. Serenity was aware of exactly how exposed she had left herself, and she was terrified.
Kaiba was sitting bent-over slightly, forearms on his knees and contemplating his folded hands as one thumb meticulously traced up and down the other. The longer he delayed, the heavier the nervous lump in his throat grew. Serenity fidgeted.
After a pregnant pause during which Serenity was certain she would die, he spoke softly.
"I never believed in fate," he began slowly, still staring at his hands, "or reincarnation, or magic, or monsters or even in existence beyond death. Even after all the B.S. I've been through in my life, I stayed stubborn in the face of all the evidence in front of me." He looked up from his hands with their fingers interlaced and into her eyes. He was nervous. "But for the first time ever, I want to believe it all." He shifted slightly on the sofa in order to face her more fully, the look on his face imploring.
"I want to believe that we were supposed to meet each other in this lifetime. That the reason I haven't been able to stop thinking about you for the past few days wasn't because you're a pretty girl with a gentle heart and a knack for saving my life, but because all this fate bullshit is finally putting us where we are supposed to be, and that's as a permanent part of one another's lives." She saw his fingers twitch in the space between them. He itched to touch her, but he held himself back.
"They told me I waited three lifetimes to find you again. I'm inclined to believe them, because I don't think I've ever wanted something so badly as I do right now." He ended as quietly as he had begun, but with a hoarse earnestness.
This time, the silence between them was different. Throughout his confession, Serenity's gaze had climbed from the starched collar of his shirt up to his eyes, fierce in their determination. Unable to look away, she thought that after all they had just been through together, this might actually be the biggest decision of her life.
And it was so easy, too. He was a good person despite his ornery nature and superiority complex. It seemed that with age came a maturity that lent to Kaiba's character. He was not the same teenager she had met five years ago at Battle City, and she knew from her time spent with him that there might just be a little more to this Seto than all the nightmares her brother would paint about him.
Besides, it was already two lifetimes in a row now that she thought he might be worth dying for.
With a new twinkle in her eye, she finally responded by pinpointing a particular admission from his confession.
"Huh. Did you really just call me 'pretty'?"
Kaiba looked confused for an entire moment before he realized she was teasing him. The momentary relief on his face was washed away when a grin that could only be described as evil cut across his expression.
"You know, it's not polite to fish for compliments," he admonished as he drew closer. Serenity turned slightly in her seat so her knees pointed in his direction, brushing slightly against his own. She tucked her chin in coyly and teased him some more.
"I'll remember to take notes next time you give lessons on etiquette, then." She watched as he closed the distance between them even more, then wondered when he paused suddenly, the atmosphere between them charged and the world around them invisible. A look of contemplation crossed his face before she witnessed an idea light up his expression.
She looked on curiously as he slowly raised his left hand in the air between them, fingers up and palm facing forward. He wore an intense expression, and she did not quite understand what he was doing.
Then it hit her.
Just like on the night of the Obon festival, her gaze switched to his hand in surprise, then flipped back to his face. Instead of the myriad of expressions she remembered from that night, though, here he was wholly and completely concentrated on her.
Her hand was steady this time when it inched its way up to meet his in midair. When her fingers touched his palm again, it was warm.
When his hand wrapped around hers fully, it was with a tender expression that she watched him guide it to his cheek, which she caressed softly to avoid hurting his bruising. He turned into it, and she felt his lips ghost across her palm, not quite leaving a kiss in its center before turning to face her again. His barely-there stubble prickled.
When they kissed this time, it was Serenity who had moved to close the distance between them.
The kiss was soft and chaste but more full of emotion than she could have ever expected. She wondered idly if any of her gossipy school friends back home had any idea what it was like to kiss a man that you had been in love with for several lifetimes. She doubted that any of them had a story to tell like her own.
It was her own personal fairy tale.
They spent the rest of the flight together in the forward cabin. They kissed, they conversed, and they learned about each other and their new dynamic. Finally, for the first time in thousands of years, there wasn't a world-ending danger threatening to keep them apart. It was beautiful, and…
It was love.
"What will happen to Bakura?" she asked softly after an hour, head on his shoulder. His fingers continued to twirl a piece of her hair absently. He stared at the dimmed far wall of the cabin as he answered just as quietly.
"Yugi contacted his father. He's going to work with the Ishtars and try to get him the help he needs. I've heard Marik is doing a lot better, and he sort of went through the same thing. They're figuring Bakura might do well with the same sort of treatment and attention, I guess."
"So is this the end of our big adventure?" she asked him sleepily, moments away from succumbing to a nap. He breathed her in slowly, her scent warm and familiar. His voice barely broke a whisper when he responded.
"I think there's still plenty of adventure to be had ahead of us, Serenity." She smiled at the sound of her name on his voice. She curled up next to him on the sofa, and together they eventually fell asleep for the rest of the journey home.
They both dreamt of flying.
A/N: There you have it. This story is finished. Again, not pleased at all with this chapter, but I really needed to get it off my chest. If you prefer, just pretend that the previous chapter was the last one. For the rest of you, hope you enjoyed the fluff.
If you've made it this far and have never left a review, please do me a kindness and let me know what you thought. This story has actually been a part of my life for a very long time, and I would love to hear any thoughts or feedback that you have to offer. It might lend to inspiration for current or future works.
For those who have stuck with it, thank you, thank you, thank you. You are incredible.
If you're interested in more works by me, I have a currently running Bleach fanfiction that I update somewhat regularly. If this is where we part ways, then I wish you the very best. Happy reading!