(previously titled Blood on the Moon)
Author's Note 2018: This story has gone under heavy rewriting. POV has been switched from 1st person to 3rd person. I liked 1st person, but many of you prefer 3rd person, so I finally got around to changing it. Also, the tense changed from present to past (not a huge deal but something I'd wanted to do for a while). Another thing, hopefully this doesn't bother anyone too much, but I changed Anzu's name to her English name Téa Gardner. Someone pointed out that everyone else's names are English... so I changed hers to match. Finally, I have changed the name of the story. I never really liked 'Blood on the Moon', as it sounded too close to my other title, Once in a Full Moon.
Author's Note June 2015: This story has reached its 10 year anniversary! Holy cow! I started writing this story back in 2005, fresh out of my high school sophomore year. You can see the improvement in my writing, though I will say the earlier chapters aren't bad compared to my other stuff from high school. And I still have the inspiration to finish it! Working quickly to finish chapter 11 by June 29th, the official anniversary date~
Disclaimer: I do not own YuGiOh.
Well, I am back from Europe! It was AWESOME! Heh, and we were at the Eiffel Tower the same day Tom Cruise proposed to Katie Holmes (or whatever her name is...). A couple of the adults actually saw Tom Cruise! Too bad I didn't; I would've taken a picture.
THERE WILL BE PAIRINGS! I swear, there will be romance eventually... Bad Dreams and Through the Eye of the Beholder are to be updated next. TTYL
This idea came to me around 1:15 am. Mystery x Suspense x Romance x Humor x Drama
Rate M for language and mature content
Summary: When Marik begins stalking Téa and ruining her life, Ryou Bakura offers up his home. He wants her safe at any cost, but Ryou is continuously plagued with illnesses. Téa finds herself left with only Yami Bakura for protection, but the tomb robber is far from anyone's savior. As Marik's attacks grow worse, Téa finds that not everything is as it seems...
Blood on the Moon
By: Chi Yagami
Sometimes, Tristan Taylor and Duke Devlin just didn't know when to quit. They had been arguing over Serenity Wheeler ever since rescuing her from those Rare Hunters back in Battle City, and, really, they should have known by now that it was never going to work out. Serenity hadn't admitted to having anything more than friendship for either boy; she hadn't really voiced her opinion on having feelings for anyone. She was quieter than the rest of the gang, and honestly, she might have a crush on just about anyone. In fact, she could even have a secret infatuation with rich boy Seto Kaiba, who was sitting alone at a table across the cafeteria. Not like anyone would ever know of Serenity's crushes, thanks to her overprotective brother. He made sure no one interfered with his baby sister, especially not Tristan and Duke.
The only thing that Téa Gardner knew for certain was that she was sick and tired of hearing those two boys fight over the younger brunette. She had tried to break up their fights several times with no success; apparently not even her friendly, womanly advice could quell Tristan and Duke's raging battle. Not to mention their raging hormones.
But what else could she do? She didn't resort to violence like some people (aka Those Damn Egyptian Spirits). One toe out of line and they would Mind Crush someone to the Shadow Realm. Okay, that was possibly an exaggeration, but–
A hand waved in front Téa's face.
"Are you alright?"
Was she all right? Wasn't that a loaded question...
"I'm fine, Ryou," she replied, plastering on a cheesy smile.
Who the hell was she kidding? She was a wreck.
"Are you sure?" Ryou replied, giving her one of those scrutinizing looks. "You've been zoned out for quite a while now."
So he had noticed. However, no one else seemed to pick up on it, not even Yugi Muto, King of Games, and Téa Gardner's self-proclaimed best friend. But Téa Gardner, Queen of Friendship, was having doubts about her relationships with her friends. After all they had been through over the years, sometimes she wondered how much any of them had really stayed the same. The constant bickering, nagging, and forgetfulness went on and on; Téa questioned frequently if they even remembered she was there. She gave and gave and gave more, and how did her friends repay her kindness and concern? Oh wait, they didn't; at times, she even felt disrespected. She felt a vein tick as Joey reached across the table and took her hamburger right off the tray.
She remembered Ryou was still waiting for an answer, so she smiled and nodded. "I'm just… uhh, thinking about that geometry project we have to do together. When are we going to do that anyway?"
School. Another problem in her life. When would the misery end? Homework never stopped, she had endless projects, and all of the advanced classes her parents signed her up for weren't helping. Everyone thought she was a smart, good girl who would have a happy ending. As if. HAH. Little did they know, she was chipping away inside. She used to be so happy at school, with her friends. Although now that Téa looked back on it, maybe she was never really happy. Maybe she just thought she was happy. Heck, what if she just enjoyed the feeling of relying on childhood fantasies? Somewhere along the way, she must have hit a reality check. The once happy-go-lucky, friendship-talking Téa Gardner everyone knew had faded away.
"Hmm… well, how about you come over to my place after school?" Ryou suggested.
And be in the same house as his sadistic, darker half? Hell no! The south ends of two magnets clicked better than her and that Egyptian snake. But, trying to keep up her act, Téa decided to shrug it off.
"Sure. That'd be great," she replied dryly. She narrowed her eyes at the rest of the group. Tristan and Duke were still fighting over Serenity (dear Ra when would they come to their senses? Oh no, now she was saying Ra instead of God? Great… just great…), Joey was eating everyone's food, Yugi and Yami were playing Duel Monsters, and Bakura was, well frankly Téa didn't know or care where he was.
Ever since the spirits had been separated from their hosts, things had been different. Yes, Yami and Yugi, and Bakura and Ryou, had received their own bodies. This creepy old guy in some outdated Egyptian rags had popped out of nowhere while Téa and her friends were all at the game shop. Yugi had merely said 'Shadi, what are you doing here?' What was he doing there? WHO THE HELL WAS HE? Why was Téa never included in the mumbojumbo ancient magic stuff? Did they think, that just because she wasn't a guy or a duelist or a Millennium Item freak, that she couldn't handle it? Hell, she had been kidnapped, brainwashed, and who knew what else! Téa deserved every right to know what was happening, especially since she was the one who stressed out the most over their well-being! Maybe she wouldn't stress as much if she knew WHAT THE HECK WAS GOING ON!
So everyone (save Yugi) had been confused about baldy (she knew that old geezer was bald under that turban) and had backed away from him. Then he'd said some mystic stuff in Egyptian, and Yugi and Yami were suddenly two people!
Then Joey had flipped out about Yami Bakura getting his own body. Well, that had people freaked. Even she was scared, Téa had to admit. That tomb robber walking around, able to kill people on his own free will? Was Shadi THAT dumb? Apparently not, because Bakura hadn't done anything… YET. Shadi must have turned him into chicken shit or something. Ryou said Bakura just moped around the house, and if he was ever at school, he was always in detention. Some people would never learn…
At least they didn't have to worry about Marik or his Rare Hunters. They were all the way in the middle of an empty desert. Losers.
Téa didn't feel like sitting there anymore.
"When will this misery end..." she muttered.
Ryou gave her a questioning look; oops, she hadn't meant to say that out loud. Oh well. It was the truth. Sigh. What the hell was she saying? Téa was a sucker for her friends.
"I'm just joking Ryou!" she apologized. "I didn't mean it, really!"
But Téa felt like there wasn't much going for her these days. None of her friends cared anymore. After Battle City, they had grown apart. Not physically or anything, obviously she still ate lunch with them, but it wasn't the same. Had they ever really been friends in a normal environment? Aside from Yugi, she supposed, who had been her friend since childhood. They had met Ryou, Duke, and Mai while out on adventures. Téa couldn't recall ever just 'hanging out' with them, unless she actually wanted to count that time she and Yami went to the museum. No, they had all just been together during adventures that all centered around Yami! Why was it always about him and his dumb puzzle! Nothing ever revolved around Tristan or her. Téa wasn't asking for center stage, just a little recognition! She felt like she was always being pushed to the back of the group. Yami and Yugi took the spotlight, everybody knew who they were, and Joey and Kaiba were right up there behind him. Mai and Ryou (and she supposed Bakura too) weren't as famous, but they had their faces plastered on several websites, considering they were finalists in the Battle City Tournament. People even knew who Tristan, Rebecca, Serenity, and Marik were! Marik didnt't even live in Japan and he was more popular at school than her! Fuck, even ODION was more popular than her! NO ONE EVEN KNEW WHO HE REALLY WAS! They simply knew him as Marik's double, or some crap like that. Maybe she was overreacting… No, in the old days, her friends were always there for her. Now, they were never seen outside of school with her.
Yugi, Yami, and Kaiba were constantly being challenged by beginner duelists, and Joey and Mai were always going places together. Duke and Tristan followed Serenity around everywhere. No one had time for Téa anymore. She had gone to a movie with Ryou once, and she was sure that he had been trying to hit on her, but they had talked it over and decided to be just friends. That had been about three months ago, right after Téa's parents left for America on another one of their stupid business trips. They always told her they wouldn't be gone long and promised to take her somewhere when they got back. As if! They hadn't kept any of their promises, and they never would.
"I'm out of here," Téa grumbled, emptying her tray into the trash, none of food even touched (well, save for the food that Joey stole). She thought she saw Ryou's eyes go as big as tea saucers, but he jumped up real fast and ran in front of her.
"Hey, Téa, why don't we go work on the project right now?"
She blinked about three times and just stared at him. Was he crazy? Ditch school with him to go work on a school project? She sighed. Might as well. Not like she had anything better to do.
"Yo, Téa, are ya gonna eat your puddin?" Joey asked, still chomping away on her burger. "Téa?"
He looked around for his brunette friend and saw her walking away with Ryou. 'Wonda where those two are goin…'
"Hey, am I the only one who noticed that Téa an' Brit boy just walked off together?" he said to everyone else.
They all stopped and looked at him. Yami dropped his cards and looked in the direction that Joey was pointing. Yugi glanced up too, and Tristan and Duke stopped fighting.
"Hey, she is gone," Duke replied. "I didn't even notice she left…"
"Where did they go?" Yugi questioned Joey.
"I dunno. All I saw was Ryou an' Téa walking off together towards the parking lot."
"You don't think they're going to skip class, do you?" Tristan wondered aloud, scratching his head. "Téa's too good to ditch class for a guy."
"Eh, just let them go make out," Duke said, brushing it off.
"HELL NO!" Yami all but shouted, pounding his fist onto the table and standing up. "I'm not letting some foreigner touch MY woman!"
"You're a foreigner too ya know," Joey mumbled.
"Hey, just because Téa was your concubine in a past life, Yami, you have no reason to claim her in this century," Tristan said smartly. Yami stared daggers in his direction.
"Let's not call Téa's potential past life a concubine, Tristan. But Yami, he's right; Téa doesn't even like you. Remember when we asked her to the dance last year, and she told us no and went with Kaiba?" Yugi reminded. Yami growled.
Joey shuddered. "I still can't believe she went with dat freak."
"I can't believe he went at all."
"So what do you think Ryou and Téa are up to?"
"Maybe they're working on that math project…"
. . .
Téa drummed her fingers on the armrest and sighed again. She and Ryou hadn't come up with anything for the project yet. They were supposed to make a 3D model of something related to geometry, not much to go off of. Right now they were driving around Domino, looking for inspiration. Ryou's car was old and stuffy; it had been his dad's ancient Honda.
She looked up as they pulled to a stop. Huh? They had just stopped in front of… the arcade? What inspiration were they going to find in here? A diagram of a video game?
"Oh, I thought you could use some fun right now," he smiled. "Wanna play some DDR?"
DDR? Téa LOVED that game! She supposed she could play a game with him… NO, wait, never mind. She had stopped playing that game some time ago, and she was pretty sure she now sucked. She couldn't play that game in front of people!
"I stopped playing that game a year ago…"
"Oh…" He sounded so rejected that Téa caved.
"But we can play a game if you want to…"
He positively BEAMED at her.
Great, so she had managed to cheer him up, but what about her? Just as Téa and Ryou were about to start playing, a swarm of people surrounded them.
"Téa! Téa! Téa!" chanted the crowd.
"Hey, I think that they're fans of yours," Ryou said, a little too prepared. Had he planned this? Téa supposed he was trying to cheer her up… had he noticed that she was depressed? Well, that was pretty sweet of Ryou. But she hadn't played DDR in a long time, and Téa didn't like the pressure the crowd now added. She had retired as a DDR queen, and if she performed poorly now...
"Yeah," she replied. "I can't do this with all of these people around." Téa jumped off the stage and exited the building, Ryou chasing after her.
She left the arcade and headed for the car. Téa heard someone running, and she turned to find Ryou charging straight for her, a scowl thrown upon his normally soft features.
"Téa! What is wrong with you?" he asked, grabbing her arm to prevent her from walking any further. "I was just trying to lighten the mood and you ruined it!"
She had never seen Ryou so angry, no... he was furious. He had never shouted at her before, so she was quite taken aback. He had always seemed like a bit of a pushover. Téa gasped in pain as he gripped her arm more painfully. He was hurting her!
"Ryou, are you okay?" she asked. He was clutching his head with his other hand while seemingly trying to rip off her arm. It reminded Téa of when Marik had first introduced himself with an injured Ryou slung over his shoulder. The poor kid was always getting hurt.
"Do you need to go to the hospital?"
"LEAVE ME ALONE!"
Damn. Had Ryou just raised his voice at her?
"I'm sorry, Téa… there's something wrong with me," Ryou choked out, stuttering. Téa didn't know what to do... Ryou's body suddenly slumped forward, and she staggered and struggled to keep him upright. He had just collapsed! Téa called out to someone, anyone who could hear.
"Help! Someone call an ambulance!"
Hospitals smelled too much like bleach; perhaps they were trying to hide the scent of blood and decay, but the bleach poured into Téa's nose and left a sting. She was sitting in the waiting room of the emergency room wing, desperate to find out what had happened to Ryou. The doctors had taken him in immediately, thank god! They had told her that Ryou would be just fine. He had only passed out, although they couldn't figure out what was wrong with him.
"Miss Gardner," a nurse said, giving her some papers, "could you please fill out Mr. Bakura's contact information, as well as your own?"
"Thanks, you can give it to the secretary when you're done."
Taking the paperwork, Téa sat back down and began to fill it out.
... ... ...
THE HECK? Téa had no damn clue as to where Ryou's father was. Hell, she wasn't exactly sure where HER parents were. Great, now she had this sick feeling in her stomach. Was it because she feel guilty of bailing on Ryou and then causing him to faint?
... ... ...
Or maybe she just need to use the bathroom…
She set the paperwork aside and headed for the restrooms. She really hoped that Ryou would recover soon. He'd been in the hospital so many times; how could the doctors not know what sort of illness he had? So lost in her thoughts Téa was, that she didn't notice someone in front of her until she had smacked right into them.
"Sorry," Téa mumbled, dodging around them and continuing towards the bathroom.
"My, my, my, Téa Gardner. It has been a while, hasn't it?"
SHIT! She would recognize that oily voice anywhere. What the hell was Marik Ishtar doing here!?
Just keep walking, just keeping walking, just keeping walking…
One of his tanned hands snaked around her arm and held her tightly.
"Well, Téa, I never thought I'd see you here."
"I could say the same thing, Marik," she spat, twisting in his grip. "Get your filthy hands OFF me!"
Marik grinned. "Not a chance. Do you think I'm just going to give up after coming this far?" He pushed her into the wall of the secluded bathroom hallway, pinning her by the shoulders. She looked around in a panic, but there was no one in sight. What the crap was he doing here, in the very same hospital? Where was Yugi when she really needed him?
"What do you want, you washed up has-been?" she hissed. Marik gave her one of those creepy smiles that made her want to die right then and there. He hadn't changed much since Battle City; he still wore the same tacky jewelry and midriff-baring clothes. He practically leered at her.
"I want you, dear Téa," he said seductively.
Her eyes widened. Did he really mean that? His violet eyes bore into hers. Téa didn't believe him; he had hurt way too many people to come back just for a girlfriend. She bet he had brought the Millennium Rod with him too!
"If you think you can use me to get Yami's puzzle, well forget it!"
"I don't want the Puzzle! I came here to get you," he replied, pressing closer.
She closed her eyes as if that would make him disappear. Téa did not want to be NEAR him! Why couldn't NORMAL stuff ever happen to her? Her friends had drifted apart, the only person who cared about her had fainted, and now a psycho had returned, claiming to be in love with her! Well, actually he never said that, but it didn't matter. She knew he still wanted to rule the world. She was just another toy in his master plan to collect the Items etc. Hmm, that sounded a lot like Bakura's plan… she would bet they were in on it together-
She had been so absorbed in her own thoughts again!
Marik was kissing her. He had his filthy, disgusting lips on hers and... to her horror, it didn't feel entirely unwanted. Shit. What bull was she smoking? This was MARIK ISHTAR she was dealing with. The freak who had killed Ryou on the blimp! Then… then why was she kissing back?
"See, I knew you liked me," he whispered, pulling away from her. Téa's face was beet-red. She could not believe she had just kissed him. She should be the one in the hospital because clearly she needed to have her head examined.
"Hey mate, get your arms off her."
The two whipped around to see Ryou standing about ten feet away. THANK GOD!
"Ryou! You're alive!" Téa breathed.
"Yeah, thanks to you, Téa. But, what is Marik doing here?" he asked. Ryou hadn't been there when Marik's evil half had been destroyed (although, to be honest, his 'better' side was still pretty despicable) so she figured he thought Marik was really the other one (Yami Marik).
"I should be asking you the same thing, snowball head. I thought you were dead," Marik replied, narrowing his eyes. That's right. Marik wasn't there when everyone had discovered Ryou in the kitchen eating.
Téa realized that Marik had taken his greasy paws off her. She was HOME FREE! She dashed over to Ryou as quickly as she could.
"You haven't seen the last of me, Téa," Marik growled, storming off. "You WILL regret it."
As Ryou fretted over her and explained about being discharged, Téa once again was surrounded by her own thoughts. Just what had Marik been doing at the hospital to begin with? And what had he really wanted with her? She was never kissing that perverted creep again! Lost in her own thoughts, Téa didn't notice Ryou's intense gaze or his clenched fists as they walked back to the car.
Her cell phone began to ring just as they reached the car, but Téa hesitated to answer when she noticed the caller ID read 'Duke Devlin.' Since when had Duke ever called her?
"Téa, you gotta get over here!"
"To the school," she heard Joey shouting impatiently. There sure was a lot of background noise… what was going on?
She hung up the phone and shared a puzzled glance with Ryou. She quickly explained the situation as they took off to the school in his car. They tried to get there as fast as they could with all of the after-school traffic. Once the two finally arrived, Téa was surprised to see many students turning their heads in her direction, whispering in hushed tones.
"What's going on?" Ryou asked as they raced inside. She shrugged. Probably someone had challenged Yami to a duel...
She noticed the crowd was growing thicker towards her locker. They pushed their way up to the front where a section had been roped off.
"TÉA!" Yugi shouted, his voice so loud that it caused her to look down and realize he was in fact standing almost right in front of her. The crowd of people was so tight that she hadn't even seen him. Looking past him, at her locker, Téa froze.
On the floor in front of the locker row, written in big letters in what looks like blood, was the word DIE. Téa could feel her heart beating faster as her eyes swept up to her own cubby. With the noise of cops and students becoming a hum in the background, she stepped under the ropes and over the message, ignoring the school security's halting demands, until she was right in front of the locker. It seemed almost as if someone had thrown a bomb at the door. One of the hinges was broken, the blue paint was scratched, and it looked like someone had tried to pry the door open with a wrench. Téa lifted up a shaky hand to the lock, spinning it familiarly.
The lock clicked and she forced the door open.
Her books were covered in blood. Blood was smeared on the photos of her friends she had adorned the space with, held in place by magnets. But everyone's eyes were drawn to something else.
On her locker wall, a blood-dripping rose was held in place by a dagger.