Amber

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Warnings/notes : Seto/Joey, slightly weird/dark, drabble-ish shortie, major ooc.

Disclaimer : I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh. I think radiany's 'Bottles of Sand' inspired the fifteenth and sixteenth paragraph, so I disclaim ownership of those lines too.

written at 20th july 2004, by Misura, in reply to a challenge made by deepsenseremix, which can be summarized as :

Fandom: Yu-Gi-Oh, definitely

Pairing: Make it SetoJou.

Title: "Amber", meaning Jou's eyes.

One line of dialogue: "Can't you see? I'm a little glass puppy that's smashed into a thousand pieces and no matter how you try, you can never put me back again!"

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"Come here."

Joey came.

He'd heard it said once that you should be careful what you wish for, because one day, you might get exactly that.

Then, he'd considered it a ridiculous platitude.

He'd wished to defeat Yugi -or Yami, whatever the boy wished to call himself. Wished to see him crushed and beaten, feeling what Seto had felt all those times Yugi had bested him.

He'd wished to prove to Yugi and his bunch of cheerleaders that the ties of friendship they so firmly believed in weren't that strong at all. That those ties could be turned into chains, to drag them all down if only one of them would fall.

And more than anything, perhaps, he'd wished to see Joey brought low, like the dog he was. While Yugi might have some small justification for staring down on Seto and considering himself a superior duelist, Joey had nothing.

Joey -was- nothing. A nobody, with more brawn than brains.

His deck was weak, depending on chance to pull him through, with the strongest cards in it gifts from Yugi, the same person who'd taught Joey the tricks of dueling.

Joey was only something, because of Yugi.

In shoving Joey back into his proper place, Seto'd accomplish all of his wishes at the same time.

"Take off your clothes."

Joey's clothes fell on the floor.

It had been so ridiculously easy.

He hadn't even needed to soil his honor by lying to Joey, by whispering those sweet words like 'I love you' and 'You're beautiful'.

Joey whispered them. Sometimes. In the beginning.

Joey was an idiot.

And Yugi and Anzu and all his other precious friends didn't do a thing to help him. That had surprised Seto more than the proof of what he'd always said.

They talked about Joey having a good influence on him, about Joey having the right to make his own choices, go his own way.

They made excuses for their own lack of caring, revealing themselves as hypocrites.

Seto's first victory, made empty somehow by a lack of victims, aside from Joey.

Joey was a perfect victim.

"Kiss me."

At first, perhaps, Joey had merely been the means to an end. Yugi was the one Seto actually aimed for, because Yugi was -someone-.

He wasn't sure if he'd been lying to himself then, or if he'd really seduced someone just to get at someone else. That last made him feel ... petty.

Joey wasn't too unattractive. Properly groomed, he could almost look pretty.

Properly trained, he made for a wonderful pet.

Joey kissed him.

Once, when he walked with Joey through the mall, hunting for a birthday-present for Mokuba, he thought he saw Yugi. Thought he saw a flash of pain and guilt in Yugi's eyes, before the crowd swallowed the boy back up.

He'd bought a new expensive shirt for Joey that afternoon, feeling in a mood to be generous.

Seto had had to pick it himself, because Joey couldn't decide on any color, aside from blue, like Seto's eyes. Seto called him a sentimental idiot and declared that blue didn't suit Joey.

"Stop."

Mokuba had sensed something was wrong.

Maybe he should have paid more attention to Mokuba.

Maybe he should have paid more attention to Joey. Or himself.

Probably, he should simply have paid more attention, period.

Joey sat back, not speaking. Just staring at him, with eyes of amber. Lifeless eyes. Beautiful eyes.

Seto licked his lips, trying to taste Joey on them. They were merely dry.

"Why are you letting me do this to you? Why aren't you fighting me?" he whispered.

Joey smiled. A sad smile. A broken smile. The silence in the room was loud.

"Why does it hurt me to see you like this?" he asked, demanded.

Joey leaned forwards, lips grazing the naked skin of Seto's chest.

"Can't you see?" It were the first words Joey'd spoken spontaneously for ... too long a time.

Seto shivered, although Joey embraced him, draping himself over Seto as a living blanket.

"I'm a little glass puppy that you smashed into a thousand pieces and even if you'd try, you can never put me back together again."

Seto shook his head, needing to deny it. Joey had never been a puppy, least of all a glass one.

"Oh, yes I am. You made me into a pretty toy, and then you broke me."

"I didn't want ... this." It was the truth.

Joey laughed softly. Brokenly. The room had gone very cold.

"I guess you forgot that shards cut, didn't you? Especially glass ones, which you don't even see until they've made you bleed. Because you can see right through them."

Joey kissed him again, without Seto having ordered him to do so. Seto felt like all air and warmth was being sucked out his body, like Joey was smothering him, killing him ...

x

The blaring noise of the alarm-clock had never sounded sweeter to Seto's ears.

That didn't keep him from taking great satisfaction in hitting the 'Slumber'-button, of course. And in snuggling back under the covers, to the warm body that appeared completely undisturbed by the alarm.

"Is it time already?" a sleepy voice inquired, as if to disprove Seto's suspicion that Joey really -could- sleep through anything.

"Yes. Six o'clock sharp." Seto liked to take a look at the state of affairs at Kaiba Corp. before leaving for school. Usually, that meant he'd rise at six, returning to kick Joey out of bed at seven.

"Hmm. Bye. Enjoy work." Joey emphatically turned away, obviously intending to enjoy his extra hour of sleep.

"What a selfish, spoilt, little puppy you are," Seto grumbled.

Joey looked back, his eyes much more awake than before. "Admit it, you love me."

"I suppose there must be -some- reason why I put up with you," Seto shrugged.

Joey grinned.

"Kiss me," Seto said, neither asking nor ordering.

Joey threw a pillow at his head and told him it was way too early in the morning to do 'stuff like that, you pervert!'.

Seto smiled about that as he ate a quick breakfast.

Which made Mokuba accuse him of being a pervert as well, 'because you did the s-word with Joey, don't bother to deny it, big brother, I can sooo see it'.

A faint smile was still lingering on Seto's lips as he was defeated by Yugi in another rematch that afternoon.

OWARI