Yu-Gi-Oh! and all its characters, are the legal and intellectual property of Kazuki Takahashi and any entities he has granted legal rights to. I claim no rights at all with my story. I greatly admire and feel gratitude to Mr. Takahashi for the amazing story and characters of Yu-Gi-Oh!

I humbly beg the pardon of Yu-Gi-Oh! purists, as I am basing this story on the Americanized version of the Duel Monsters story as aired by the KidsWB.

The King of Duelists

"Play the damn card, already!" growled the dragon, sitting back on a loop of his massive tail and looking down at the cards in his hands. He was careful to mind his claws, lest they shred his precious cards.

"Tsk, tsk!" remonstrated his opponent, wagging a finger playfully. "Such language, Blue!"

"I'm bored with this duel. My unstoppable Seto has driven your life-points down to a paltry," the dragon lifted a pair of small round glasses from the very end of his snout up to peer through the lenses at the amber, glowing numbers floating eerily over his opponent's purple, pointy-helmeted head, "...twenty! You should just concede this duel so I can go back to my nap. Your puny Yugi is no match for my peerless Seto Kaiba!"

The Dark Magician, for Blue-Eyes White Dragon's opponent was none other, yawned theatrically. "How many duels have you won against me, Blue?"

The dragon growled inarticulately for an answer.

"Exactly. One would think you'd get tired of losing all the time." Dark Magician examined the nails of his left hand before rubbing them briskly against the fabric of the tabard at his right shoulder.

"Not all the time. I have won two duels from you."

The Dark Magician reached out and patted a coil of the dragon's tail (where it curved completely around him) in such a solicitous fashion that his action charged right over the boundary of kindly gesture into becoming down-right insulting condescension. "Whatever fantasy gets you through your day, you dear old thing!"

Blue-Eyes blustered in apoplectic confusion.

"I play 'Cockeyed Optimism' on my ever-cheerful Yugi Motou." Dark Magician beamed as, on the dueling field, Yugi's shoulders pulled back and he stood up straight and proud, nearly topping five feet. "That ends my turn."

Blue-Eyes snorted. "That's it? That's your move?" The Dark Magician nodded.

"HA! I play 'Impressive Trench Coat Flare' on my all-powerful Seto, making his attack power," the dragon lifted his cheaters to peer through the lenses again, "double that of your pathetic Yugi!"

Seto too, stood straight and tall, though in his case it was more impressive than Yugi's version of 'tall'. The oddly designed hem of his trench coat flared out, appearing as if it lengthened somehow and fluttered dramatically in a non-existent breeze. (Quite honestly though, it reminded one of a peacock mantling the feathers of its tail restlessly. An albino peacock. An ugly albino peacock. With a smirk. And a 'tude. Oodles and oodles of un-peacock-like 'tude.)

The Dark Magician lifted an eyebrow in a "yeah, so?" gesture, appearing decidedly un-impressed.

"Then he casts 'Crushing Despondency' on your sniveling duelist!" Blue-Eyes snarled. The Dark Magician sat back sharply at that, evidently stunned as Yugi's smile faltered and broke. His duelist's lower lip even quivered. The look the supreme spell-caster shot his draconian opponent was sheer poison. A lesser monster (and even some duelists, if truth be told) would have been carbonized on the spot (or would wish they had been).

"That has always been your mistake, scaly one -- may your next molt itch fiercely like the stings of the bites of a thousand-and-one angry sand fleas and last a full forty days and nights! -- picking on my favorite duelist, Yugi Motou!"

The Blue-Eyes White Dragon rolled his eyes. "Yeah, whatever. I believe I've won this duel, so..."

"Oh? But Yugi is still there," Dark Magician noted mildly, ignoring the fact that Yugi was now desperately treading water in the small lake his copious tears had become.

"If I just wait, at this rate, he'll drown himself," Blue-Eyes noted.

"I play Téa, and activate her 'Fluffy Bunny Friendship Speech - Level One'", Dark Magician called out. Téa appeared above the field, let out a small squeal as she was dropped into Yugi's lake of tears and began treading water next to Yugi.

She immediately began telling him all about the power of friendship, and the fact that friendship was like a fluffy bunny, and that no one could possibly hate friendship, with the exception of Seto Kaiba, since he was such a cranky, mean old spoot, and evil people who'd abuse kittens if given half a chance. Her speech was entirely over-wrought with floribund expressions (expressions that should die of abject embarrassment the moment she uttered them, because they are simply that ridiculous, but somehow exist with a hideously tenacious hold on life granted by Téa's absolute belief in the nonsense she was spouting) about the value of friendship, love and fluffy bunnies (well, not so much the fluffy bunnies, but honestly! She's always only a few words away from declaring that fluffy bunnies could end strife, famine and war; and that fuzzy feeling you have all over your teeth when you first wake up in the morning).

Yugi stopped weeping and the lake of his tears magically dried up.

Author's notes -

Reviews, comments and constructive criticisms are always welcome! Please feel free to email me also if you see something awkward that needs to be clarified or fixed. I need all the help I can get.