Summary: HOT GUY ON GUY ACTION. No, I'm lying. That's just fun to say. Man, I hope you didn't stop reading because I said that. Or maybe you're reading BECAUSE I said that. In which case, it's ALL TRUE. ...But seriously. This is a SetoxJoey future fic in which Joey is a photographer... Just go with it. It's intended to be relatively fast-paced and humorous, though I'll be working some emotional issues and angst in later. You know, if it's actually possible to carry that off in a hodge-podge like this.
Disclaimer: I don't own Yu Gi Oh. If I did, chances are there'd be more guys making out. Oh god, I've turned into a bit of a yaoi-fic fangirl. I miss the days when my weird nerdiness was within the range of socially acceptable weird nerdiness.
Seto Kaiba was well-prepared for most things in life. It just so happened, however, that photo shoots were low on his list of priorities. More specifically, photo shoots for magazines aimed at teenage girls were so low on his list of priorities as to not, in fact, be on it. Oh no - this was no Times. This was no Forbes. This was no Business Man's Quarterly or Economic Enquirer.
This was Happy-Chan Girlfest, and this month's edition was to promise Japan's Top Five Business-Look Bishies.
It was a pain in the ass.
Seto strode down the corridor, flanked by flunkies in business suits and one frantic makeup woman desperately trying to apply the last few dabs of powder to Seto's cheeks.
"Please, Mister Kaiba! Allow me to finish accenting your exquisite bone structure!"
Kaiba grimaced and pushed his way through the double doors to the photo studio. All those within automatically snapped their heads up as he and his entourage paused in the doorway. Kaiba smirked slightly. The key to making an entrance just to happened to be that you entered whenever the hell you felt like it.
"Let's get this over with," he said, his somewhat flat tone only hinting at the extreme combination of boredom and ire he was experiencing. "Where do you want me?"
A small red-headed woman to the side, who just happened to be holding a camera, swooned at words she had never thought to hear the Seto Kaiba say.
"Hey!" Someone shouted at her, and dove forward. A moment later there was a thunk as the woman hit the ground. But the camera was safe.
"...Just like old times, eh Kaiba?"
The second thing Seto Kaiba had not been prepared for was to find Katsuya Jounouchi on the set for aforementioned photo shoot. Still, he didn't let that fluster him.
"What are YOU doing here?"
"...Calm down, Kaiba. I'm the photographer." Jounouchi carefully regarded the camera in his hands - spared the fate of a fast trip to the floor - then protectively placed its strap around his neck. It dangled like an oversized ornament. But at least it didn't clang noisily, like the silver bangles Joey was wearing in the place of a watch.
Kaiba pulled his eyes away from them to raise an eyebrow. "...And her?" He gestured to the fallen damsel, who was being stepped on by various people with clipboards and lightbulbs.
"She was holding my camera while I ate a doughnut."
...He had been wondering why Jounouchi had powdered confectionary sugar smeared around his mouth.
"Somehow, I'm not surprised to find you surrounded by slapstick. Don't tell me you actually possess some kind of jobskill?"
"Hey, I have all kinds of interesting skills." Jou pouted slightly and tossed his head, though the motion did nothing to alter his already-tousled hair. He fiddled with his camera without looking at it. The bracelets jingled, effortlessly annoying.
Kaiba refrained from pursing his lips at the sound. "Whatever. I meant what I said; let's get this over with." He ignored his tag-alongs, who were becoming increasibly agitated by the way their boss was causing them to occupy the doorway. He stared at the blonde.
Jounouchi let go of his lens and glanced between Kaiba and a blue backdrop, hanging across the room in front of some lightstands. "You hold that thought. I need to go find a higher red filter or that isn't going to match the lovely shade of your eyes." Jounouchi wandered off at a leisurely pace. For a certain CEO, it was infuriatingly leisurely.
Kaiba's eye twitched slightly as he took in the rear view of Jou sauntering away in loose jeans and a fitted white shirt with red paint artistically splotched across it. The third thing he hadn't been prepared for this afternoon was Katsuya Jounouchi - as irritating as ever and still a terrible flirt.
And even better looking than he had been in highschool (or was that number four?). Apparently the world of teenage fashion had taught him how to wear baggy pants that still managed to show off his tight...
"Someone get me a coffee!" Kaiba barked abruptly, and stalked into the room expecting the others to follow.
"Geez, Kaiba, could you relax a little? I mean, do you know that word? Say it after me: reeeeeelaaaaaaaaax."
Kaiba tried out his patent Glare Number 204, guaranteed to send employees and obnoxious old ladies with poodles and pearls running screaming into the night.
"...Great. Now you look even MORE like you have a stick up your ass."
"Uh, Mr Jounouchi, perhaps - " attempted one of Kaiba's business suit clones.
"Then again, I guess teenage girls like those bad boy scowls." The camera clicked. " 'Oh Mister Kaiba, you're so mean but you just need someone to love you and - ' "
"Jounouchi. Take your god damned photos, and let me get the fuck out of here," Kaiba said very slowly, his teeth clenched.
The blonde sighed. He lowered his camera. "I'm not just doing this to get on your nerves. Although that is an added bonus. But in case you haven't noticed, this is my job."
"Then do it!"
"Yeah, it's really easy to make you appeal to teenage girls when you look like you'd happily slit their throats while they slept, rather than be standing here in front of me."
"That's your problem, not mine."
"You're as arrogant as ever!"
"And you, apparently, have wasted your time to become a second-rate photographer for boy-crazed, superficial teenage girls!"
"...Who would like you a lot more if you would cooperate!"
Someone somewhere cleared their throat. The two combatants took a moment to recall they were standing in a room full of crowded people, all breathless with photographic and money-making anticipation. (Or perhaps they were just holding their breath in case two particular people began throwing chairs.)
"Come on, Kaiba, why are you here if you're not going to take this seriously?"
Kaiba crossed his arms and glared at Jounouchi - though it was hard to be sure he was glaring at the right person while he was standing in front of those bright lights. But he was PROBABLY glaring at his highschool rival. Who was right. Kaiba wouldn't say it out loud, of course. But he'd been acting like a baby. His scowl deepened.
His PR department was forcing him to do this shoot in a desperate attempt to lure an unsuspecting chunk of the female population into the realm of gaming. It wasn't going to work very well if no one liked him.
The problem was, he didn't want people to like him. Not the majority, anyway. He just wanted them to do what he said. People, as it is commonly known, are stupid. Kaiba, as it is canonically known by fangirls, is not. Therefore the twain should not, in the ideal situation, ever meet.
Of course, he had Jounouchi standing in front of him. The situation was anything but ideal to begin with.
"You ARE the one who wanted to get this over with."
"Fine." Kaiba snapped.
"Great." Jounouchi smiled happily and loaded another round of film into his camera. "Now... Make love to the camera, baby... Oh, fine," Jou added. "I want you to stand with your arms crossed and look at the lens. ...Great. Now look at little less frightening. Even better. Tilt your head sideways slightly..."
"Okay, that should be the last shot we need, Kaiba."
"About fucking time," Kaiba muttered, and tossed his jacket - more expensively-tailored than any Happy-Chan Girlfest's wardrobe could provide - at one of his subordinates. He wouldn't be wearing it again for a while. Not until he could get the dirty feel of posing with it slung over his shoulder out of his mind.
"...Is it THAT time already?"
Kaiba ignored Jounouchi's suggestive tone, choosing to head for the door.
"Yeah, you take care too! Glad we could catch up like this!"
Kaiba stopped on the way out. He glanced back. "I hope you know you have sugar on face." He left, followed by his amorphous mob of employees.
When a person from one's past reappears in an unexpected place, it is often an event that sticks in one's mind. Thus, much to Kaiba's chagrin, although he did his best to avoid the latest issue of Happy-Chan, over the next couple of weeks he found his mind wandering to Katsuya Jounouchi in the some of the more boring moments of meetings.
Of all places to find the insolent yap. If anyone had asked Kaiba - which, rest assured, they hadn't - what future he'd have predicted for that loudmouth, it would have been something along the lines of scamming even worse duelists than he out of their money in backwater dives. Having not been asked, after highschool Kaiba had instead pushed his teenage rival - if that was the term for it - to the back of his mind.
Especially repressing that incident in their last year. Jounouchi had always pushed his very high-tech buttons, but never so much as when he was also pushing the shutter reflex of a camera.
Maybe the career choice wasn't so surprising afterall. Damn him.
And then three weeks later Jounouchi was crouching in front of a black, foam-lined case of equipment when he heard a commotion from across the studio room of the Economic Enquirer. A few minutes after that, a pair of black boots stopped next to him. He didn't look up; he'd been expecting them.
"Don't tell me: Happy-Chan Girlfest fired you."
"Nope," Jou replied, nonplussed. He squinted into a long black lens, then pulled out a cloth to wipe it with from out of his back pocket. Jeans again. Another shirt. The same bracelets, which jingled as Jounouchi swished the cloth back and forth over the small piece of convex glass.
Kaiba glared down at him, though the effect was somewhat wasted as Jounouchi didn't bother to meet his gaze.
"Actually," he said when Kaiba failed to stalk off, "These guys found out I was the one who took those photos of you and offered me a nice fat wad of cash to shoot for this interview."
"Great; a freelance mutt. I should have known better than to think you could hold down a steady job."
That got a reaction - a trace of anger lurked in Jounouchi's honey-coloured eyes as he stood with his camera and the lens he had selected. "I'm freelance because I'm GOOD, Kaiba. Apparently I'm the only person in town that has managed to get halfway decent shot of YOU."
"I just thought I should know why I seem to find myself taking orders from a dog, instead of the other way around." He turned on his heel and began to walk away.
"Yeah," Jounouchi called after him, "Or maybe you just like talking to someone who isn't a complete sycophant!"
Slowly, Kaiba turned back around. "By the way, I happened to think the photographs you shot of me were awful. I expect to approve the next lot before they go to publishing."
So he hadn't even looked at the photographs; the better to annoy Jou with, my dear.
"Great," Jou replied sarcastically, "I'll just bring them by the mansion, shall I?"
"That will be fine," Kaiba replied coolly, before going to have some words with his PR team. Three steps later his stride faltered almost imperceptibly. Wait - what had he just agreed to? Someone else could probably fix it. Damn him.
So... What did you think? Please let me know if you liked it; chances are I won't expend much effort continuing if you don't. Oh yeah, and thanks to kurayami ryou-sama for her first efforts as beta.