Disclaimer- I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh.

AN: Anzu-bashers... walk away now. Hinted Joey/Mai and subtle Yugi/Tea.


I look at Joey, lying there, alive, but his mind is... gone.

I can't believe it, not really. Joey's always been there, just like Yugi, even when we weren't friends, when I thought Joey was just a bully, he was still there.

And now he's gone. I knew he would be, you know. From the moment I saw Mai go down, I felt it, for the first time. True fear. We had risked our lives plenty of times, but we always made it through, we always won, we never lost. I thought that Marik was just going to be another arrogant blowhard, like Pegasus, but instead he was strong, stronger than Mai, and Mai was beaten.

And when I saw Joey go up there, saw him try to free Mai, I knew that he would do anything to protect her. He cared about her deeply, more than he knows yet.

But something else scares me too. And another image keeps flashing in my head. The day when Yugi and Joey were forced into a duel by Marik, I felt scared, not because of the fact there was a giant weight over my head about to kill me at a moment's notice, but because I could lose one of my best friends to the hands of another.

And I almost lost both of them. When Yugi blocked that spell, I thought that we might be safe, that we might have a chance... but I was wrong. I watched as that once scared little boy sacrifice his own life to save his best friends, and I felt my heart stop. Yugi plunged into the ocean, and I felt more scared than I ever felt before, because this time, I saw Yugi fall, I saw it happen, and I thought he was dead.

Joey caught him though, and saved him. They made it out of that mess.

And when that image stops coming through my head, another one appeared. The moment when the Winged Dragon of Ra attacked Joey and Mai, and then Yugi ran up and blocked the attack, shielding them with his own body.

My heart stopped again. I couldn't breath, I couldn't move, all I could do was stand there and watch as my best friend, my oldest friend, took a blow from a gigantic dragon, and collapse to the floor.

He survived that time too, and so did Joey, but Mai didn't walk away from that encounter. And now Joey's down too, he gave his all to save Mai, even his life.

This time, only Yugi walked away from the battle.

I think that's what scares me the most now. Yugi doesn't have Joey to catch him when he falls this time, he doesn't have that bond that he and Joey have to draw strength from. He has me, and Tristan, and Duke, and Serenity, but I don't think it will be enough to save him this time. Not when so many losses have happened. He'll give up his life to save Joey's, just as any of us would do for him.

No.

I won't let that happen. I can't stand by and watch Yugi go too. I need to talk to him, I need to tell him that to stop, to just walk away.

I think I hate myself a little for that. I think that I'm jealous sometimes, that Yugi and Joey can fight while all I can do is cheer them on and watch from the sidelines. Its what I've always done for them, give them my support, but never truly get involved beyond that. I'm not a fighter.

But no more. I can't let Yugi go through with this. I can see him out of the corner of my eye, before he left. He was broken, miserable, and burning with hatred for Marik. I knew he'd beat Kaiba down in a second with that anger, just so he could have a shot at Marik.

It scared me a little, seeing Yugi like that. He was angry, angrier than I've ever seen him. He's rarely angry, really. He's rarely sad, either. The most I've seen him broken is the day he lost to Kaiba. That was a bad moment, and I brought him out of it. I'm glad I was able to, but I don't think all the duels or star chips or speeches I can say will bring him out of this.

But I have to try. I can't let Yugi fall too, not now. Our group is falling apart, and if Yugi went, then we'd all fall apart. He's what drew us all together, spinning a web of friendship around each of us and pulling us into a group, with him at the center. He's the keystone to our group, what holds this group together. If we lost him, we'd be lost.

I don't think even he realizes just how important he is to all of us, to me. Yugi doesn't understand that he's a light in our lives, that he's what keeps us all afloat, no matter what. If his light went out, we'd all fall apart, we'd blame each other, we'd fight each other, and we'd be lost, so lost in the darkness.

Even if we survived, if Joey and Mai came back if Yugi sacrificed himself, what would be the point of the world? It would be a darker and colder place without that ball of sunshine and happiness. We'd never make it through a day without being haunted by his face. I'd never make it through the day without seeing him, without knowing he was fine.

I can't let him go through with this.


AN: Thanks for reading and please review!