Well then, the start of my first fan fiction. First of all, I must give credit where credit is due. A good friend of mine inspired this. She once told me three was a perfect number, and that was the basis for her next fanfic. Thank you, Lavender Insanity, for it spawned my will to write.

Disclaimer: Yu-Gi-Oh is not mine... God, would you stop throwing shoes at me?! I ADMITTED IT! IT ISN'T MINE, YOU HEAR?! Believe me, this is the only time you'll hear it, 'cause it really isn't necessary for me to repeat myself.

"Gimme! Gimme gimme GIMMEEEEEEEE!" A high-pitched voice shrieked as the owner jumped at another chance to grab what was set within his sights.

"Nuh uh. The rules ARE you have to get it for yourself!" A slightly more boyish voice answered, laughing happily and raising the object just within reach of his shorter companion. What was it? A simple, rather thick string baring the weight of three large, round beads, all of them a brilliant shade of carnation pink.

"Come ooooon!" The shorter let out a shrill cry and jumped, but this time, lost his balance on the unceremonious landing and sent them both toppling to the dirt. Feeling only slightly dazed, the smaller took the chance and crawled over, climbing on top of his friend and sitting on his stomach.

"Ryou... you really want it?" The elder of the two asked softly.

Ryou nodded, looking down from his seated position with big, watery emerald eyes. The boy beneath him smiled up, leaning up on one elbow just enough to place the charm around Ryou's neck with his free hand.

"That's fine," he said sweetly, "I made it for you anyways."

He frowned as he noticed the tears brimming his friend's eyes and leaned up to place a gentle kiss just under each eye. "Don't cry," he pleaded sadly. He gently toyed with the beads now hung around the other's neck and stared up intently. Maybe it was wrong to look at such innocence this way.

But it was undeniable. The boy sitting upon his stomach was an angel. An adorable and untainted spirit; anything and everything was he willing to give to make sure he was never hurt. To make sure he never felt unloved and alone. Never would he deserve such pain.

Ryou examined the beads with wide, curious eyes, admiring how stunning they were. "It's the best gift ever," he murmured, smiling happily. "I'll treasure it always."

Seeing Ryou happy was always worth it. "You do that, kid," he replied, winking up at the smaller who giggled.

It turned out that day those very beads were unlucky. So terribly unlucky for poor little Ryou and his beloved best friend.

Ryou rolled off and curled up beside his companion, who placed an arm around him. And in the grass, they lay like that on a beautiful summer day, two pieces of a puzzle; peaceful and happy in the others presence. Complete.

He went on holding him close, staring at the sky thoughtfully. "Hey Ryou?"

"Yes?" The other said half-asleep, blinking cutely.

"What would you say if I told you I could take you away from this place? Just the two of us..." he finished softly.

The small, frail boy cuddled into his side, pondering for a moment. He looked up after a while, eyes confused and inquiring. "Would you really?" It came out in a breathy whisper, but it truly held such hope.

"Yes. I would."

Silence. It worried him. Though the younger had said nothing to this, he was almost sure those words would shun and insult him for being so stupid. Why had he even asked? Could he truly be that selfish? Stupid, stupid, stupid...


That simple one-worded plea made his eyes widen. Could Ryou be serious? Dragging him away from the things he loved... he felt horrible. Until he got older, it could wait. Couldn't it? "Tell you what... in five years, I'll ask you the same question again. If the answer is still yes, I will carry out my promise."

The white-haired child buried his nose in the elder's neck and nodded slightly. "Promise, promise?"


He agreed happily and curled up, suddenly shivering despite the warm summer day. The taller wrapped both arms around him, whispering words of comfort. Soon after, inhaling deeply the mixed scent of grass and peach scented shampoo, Ryou was asleep. He sighed and pulled the angel closer almost possessively.

"I love him," he stated softly, speaking to none other than the graceful breeze. He laughed shortly and placed a kiss upon the sleeping Ryou's forehead. "Nothing will change that."

Unable to will himself to sleep, he settled for being there to hold the younger when he woke up.

Everything couldn't have been more perfect. He would run away with Ryou. Away from this godforsaken place.

Of course, the child clamped to his side was much too young. And maybe, just maybe, he was too. In five years, Ryou would be fourteen and he would be eighteen. For now, he would be content with wonderful moments like this.

Reflecting on the past, he had no regrets. Moving here had been one of the best things he had ever done. Well, one of the best things his mom had ever made him do. Meeting Ryou had been one of the best instances in his lifetime.

Walking up a dirt road, he kicked a rock in a random direction. How he despised this place. Why in the world did his mom make him move here?!

And then, a clear sound broke him of his anger and made him frown. Crying? He looked around, only to see nothing. Nothing but a few lone houses. So where was it coming from?

"Hello?" He asked, quite stupidly, expecting someone to answer.

It continued, as he searched for the source. And it suddenly hit him. Or rather, fell on him.

Something distinctly human had fallen out of one of the trees and landed on him. Ouch. He groaned unhappily as whatever had fallen hurriedly got off. "I'm so sorry!" A soft voice apologized quickly. That was when he looked up to find his angel. Fallen angel, mind you.

His mouth formed a silent 'oh' as he sat up and blinked. What a cute little kid. Maybe six or so, from the looks of it. "It's fine," he said shortly, standing up and brushing himself off.

The short boy smiled sadly and nodded, sniffling and hiccupping.

He smiled sweetly and wiped the tears away from each eye, nodding back to the boy. "What's your name?"

"Ryou," he whispered back shyly, adverting his gaze.

"Why were you crying, Ryou?"

"I'm all alone."

It had been a fabulous friendship from there on out.

Now, like it was said before; that simple necklace came with a horrible amount of bad luck that day. Starting with...

"Ryou! Ryou, where are you?!" It was a woman's voice. His eyes narrowed dangerously. Who would dare to ruin his good mood now? Of all days, couldn't they just be left alone?

And apparently, they had been found.

She was a slightly hefty woman, red hair looking disheveled and sticky, almost. With a slender face, high cheek bones, and forest green eyes, she looked familiar. Familiar and apparently very upset with him.

She swiftly kicked him in the side that was left exposed, having Ryou on the other, emitting a rage-filled cry as she did so. She grabbed Ryou's arm and pulled him up, as the wounded young man on the ground turned over and spit blood up onto the grass. "Why..."

"You FREAK!" She interrupted with a shriek of disgust, the now very much awake Ryou watching with horror-filled eyes. Delivering another kick to his ribs, he screamed hoarsely as it became harder to breathe. His chest heaved as more blood leaked from his lips and dripped quite depressingly onto the grass. "You bitch..." he spat out, clutching his aching side as if to will the pain away.

"I trusted you and that whore that you call a mother! And here you are, you gay, pathetic, piece of shit trying to influence Ryou as well! You were going to try and bed him, weren't you? You disgusting, vile-"

"Mom, stop!"

And that's when it hit him. He had seen this woman before. It was Ryou's mother.

"Shut up, Ryou!" She screeched angrily, throwing him aside and returning to kick him once again. And it ripped a scream from his throat. A terrifying shriek that hushed the wind and echoed throughout the area. Ryou watched, tears pouring freely now. He couldn't stop it. There was no way to stop her until she was satisfied.

She returned to deliver another...

when Ryou threw his body over his companion's, and received the kick for him. He couldn't stop it; so he would suffer as well.

He cried out. The pain that ripped through his frail body was immeasurable. But he would never regret it.

Anything to save his beloved from more pain. Maybe his mother had had enough... maybe she would stop now...

"Ryou... Ryou, baby, no... Why did you do that, sweetie? Come on, answer me..." Truth be told, that voice sounded more afraid of going to prison than concerned for his condition. It hurt... but he had to know what had happened to his friend. A chubby hand ran down his cheek, as if to comfort him.

"How the... fuck could you?" The bleeding figure asked in disbelief. "Y-you kicked your... own son. R-Ryou..." he wheezed out, coughing and hacking.

She shot a narrow glare at him. "Stay away from him. You will stay away from my son."

With that, she seemingly disappeared, leaving the two alone on the ground. Ryou carefully crawled over to his friend's body, sobbing quietly. He grasped a hand in his own and squeezed it reassuringly, mouthing "I'm sorry." while hiccupping.

Despite the pain. Despite the agony. The elder of the two leaned up and carefully placed a kiss just under each eye, leaving soft marks with the blood on his lips.

The last thing he saw that day was Ryou being carried away, kicking and screaming, by a large man.

"Jeez, did you hear? He's got three broken ribs and a punctured lung!"

"Yeah, I know! Ryou's mother should be locked away! That bitch is crazy!"

"I think he's going to die," a monotone voice replied.

He knew where he was then. A hospital. The moment he regained his senses, he winced at the pain in his chest and side. Could she really have done that much damage? It sure felt like it. As soon as the three in the room noticed he was awake, two rushed to his side, sticking their faces as close as possible.

"You could've been killed, dipshit! Everyone knows that his mom is totally against 'her Ryou' being touched."

"Way to warn me when I already got the shit kicked out of me," he replied unenthusiastically, rubbing his temple. This place was very bright. That bothered him AND gave him a headache!

"She kicks hard," he said softly, sending the other three into a fit of laughter. Now that he thought about it, that woman looked nothing like Ryou. "Was that really his mother?"

"Well," one started, "she's not his real mom. She died long before the two of you met."

"Yep, Yami's right! That red-headed whale is his stepmother." Another called Duke rang out, prodding the bedridden young man and smiling.

"She sure is a beached whale, isn't she?"

His body shook with quiet laughter as he pondered this. But then, he remembered what had happened to Ryou. His body shot up, ignoring the pain it caused, his eyes wide. He grabbed Yami by the collar of his shirt and snarled.

"Where is Ryou?"

He chuckled shortly, not at all surprised by the outburst. "He's most definitely not in this hospital."

Well damn. That posed a problem. "Where..."

"We don't know," the monotone voice answered from the table across the room. On it sat Seto, legs dangling off the side. He looked up, icy blue eyes devoid of emotion. "If we did, don't you think we would bring him here?"

He sighed softly and ran a hand through his hair. "Yeah, I know. So how long am I stuck here?" He asked distastefully.

It was Duke's turn to speak up. "A week at most. Your mom said sorry for not being able to come see you yet. She's working late, apparently."

He figured as much. She would never take time off work for anything. Not even if he had died and this had turned out to be a funeral instead.

"Ryou, sweetheart! It's time for dinner! Come down now, ok?"

Ryou had locked himself in his room and refused to come out. Mainly because of the witch of a stepmother waiting outside his door. He was safe here. But what about his friend?

That day had been absolutely horrible. To watch him be hurt like that... it was like needles stabbing at his heart. Why did his father have to love such an awful, awful person?

His eyes were dry, red, and puffy now; no more tears to cry, as it were. He had watched his best friend endure what was truly meant for him instead. And he knew all too well how hard he was kicked each time. Devastatingly.

Ever since that woman had entered his life, thanks to his oblivious father, he knew she was an evil and corrupted soul. Even trying to see the good in her failed miserably. There was no good to find.

What kept him from telling his father?

No sooner had he been dragged home had she threatened him. But, it took time to get through to him.

"I'll beat you until you can barely breathe, boy."

Nothing. He stared up at her defiantly.

"I'll kill you."

Still nothing. And then, her rather primitive brain formed an idea. He wouldn't respond to threats on his life, so...

"I'll kill your little friend."

That struck a nerve.

"Y-you wouldn't!"

"I would."

Although, he wondered greatly why she had always called his friend gay. They hugged and cuddled often, but did that really make them homosexual?

He loved him so much... why did she have to be so mean? What if she killed him, despite his keeping quiet about what she had done?

His eyes found new tears to spill as he curled up into a ball and sobbed his heart out. A knock on his door was heard, and then a muffled voice on the other end.

"Get out here," his stepmother demanded calmly, "or I will break down this door." He had no doubt that she could. And would without hesitation. "Your stupid father is worried. Now get out here!" She screeched, yet only loud enough for him to hear so, he was sure, his father wouldn't hear.

"Don't say that about my dad..." he whispered helplessly. Realizing he wouldn't come out, she sighed heavily and left, offering 'he said he was feeling a little sick' as the excuse as to why he wouldn't come down as she entered the kitchen.

He fingered the pink beads around his neck and smiled sadly, wishing his best friend was here. To place a kiss just under each emerald eye and tell him it would be ok.

"I'm sorry, Bakura. I'm so sorry..."

They saw each other but twice... before Bakura disappeared.

When his mother had found out exactly what had happened to him, she was furious. No matter how many times she told Bakura to stay away from Ryou, he refused to do so.

Ryou was currently hanging out the side of his bedroom window, a month or so after the incident, looking frightened beyond belief.

"Come on, Ryou! Jump!" Said the figure below him, perhaps twenty feet or so. He was asking the impossible. He couldn't do it!

"I'm too scared," he whispered pitifully, tears rolling down his cheeks.

"I'll catch you."


"Promise. Now jump!"

He slowly counted to three, and jumped, to be caught by a foolishly grinning Bakura, who fell down onto his butt with Ryou in his arms. Pushing aside the fact that his ribs still hurt, he leaned down and placed a kiss just under each eye.

"It'll be ok."

That night, they walked in silence to the lake. Held close by the other, Ryou just had to ask. He was so curious...

"Why does my stepmother... call you gay?" He asked innocently.

And he couldn't answer. He couldn't answer that godforsaken question, so he placed a kiss just under each of Ryou's eyes and gritted his teeth.

Ryou blinked. Bakura only did that when he was crying. He wasn't crying now...

But Bakura was.

The day after, an argument broke out in Bakura's household. His mother once again gave him a firm order to stay away from Ryou. Being defiant was his downfall.

And so it came to be. They moved away.

Since her thirteen year old son resisted, she bound his hands and shoved him in the backseat while Ryou watched. He was helpless, soon to be all alone. Again. As the car drove off, Bakura mouthed to him from the back window two, simple words.

"Never forget."

Gee... can't have fluff without angst. I feel bad now. I plan on chapters being much longer after this. I just needed a starter and considering I fit everything I wanted to in perfectly, this is all there is as a first chapter.

Adrian: Her one and only muse here. -nods- Anyways, read and review. We don't demand them, we just enjoy them.