A/N: Alright, final chapter! I know it's a bit short, but I just couldn't drag it out any longer without having to drag it out much longer, and I think that I should have ended it when they left AE in the first place. But I didn't, so meh. Anyway, I don't own Yugioh, so no suing me. I'm broke anyway, and the money I do have goes to my hotel room for SakuraCon. Enjoy the new chapter. Read and review!
"Return of the King"
Apparently, Seto's idea of a suitable restaurant was one that would give Seto a crash course in Japanese food. That is, traditional Japanese food. It took a lot of coaxing and a few threats to get the royal to eat the sashimi. In the end, a few well-done taunts from Bakura did the trick.
"-So, what do you think of Japan so far?-" Ryou asked, inching the sake bottle Bakura had ordered away from the thief. He didn't want his yami convincing Seth to drink any. The pharaoh may have a good tolerance for wine, having grown up on it, but sake was stronger than what he was used to.
"-I think that I understand why you are all so strange,-" he said flatly. "-Spending so much as a month here would drive anyone nuts.-"
"-I wouldn't say that,-" Marik said. "-Bakura grows less homicidal the longer he's here.-"
"-Until you show up,-" Yugi added with a grin. "-Your presence sets back his therapy by years. He'll probably be back to his original pharaoh-hunting, puzzle-stealing self by the end of the week.-"
Atemu grimaced. "-Let's hope not. I like my stress levels where they are, thank you very much. Having to be constantly looking over my shoulder every second of the day is not good for my heart.-"
"-At least you're not sharing it with Yugi anymore,-" Seto said with a smirk. "-He has enough troubles being short without adding heart problems to the list.-"
"-I heard that.-"
"-I wasn't attempting to be quiet.-"
"-So, where's Mokuba?-" Ryou asked, trying to divert the possible argument.
"-He was playing chess with Noa when I left,-" the CEO said, signaling for the bill once it was clear that everyone was finished eating. "-I don't expect them to be finished until dinner.-"
So it was that Seth left with Seto and Marik, saying a temporary goodbye to his cousin, the thief, and the hikari with plans to see the older two the next day, as the younger would be busy. With what, they hadn't explained.
"-Do you live in a similar home as Atemu and Yugi?-" Seth asked as the limo pulled away. "-They said that you were in the same business, but a different part of it.-"
Seto snorted. "-A much different part of the business. You'll find that our homes are nothing alike.-"
A short while later, Seth found out just how differently the Moutos and the Kaibas lived. The gated mansion that the limo pulled up to was more like the palaces he was familiar with than the small house/shop Atemu currently lived in. He nodded in approval. His reincarnation had done well for himself even without royal blood to back him up at the start. And from what he understood, Seto was barely a legal adult in the eyes of his country.
"Welcome home, Mr. Kaiba," the head of staff greeted as they entered the 'house.' "As ordered, the largest guest rooms have been prepared for use and the chef has been informed of your guests' particular tastes."
"Good," Seto said briskly as he handed his coat to a waiting housekeeper. Seth followed suit but Marik voted to keep hold of his to put in his own room. "Mokuba is still in the den?"
"Yes sir," the man said. "If I am to say, he appears to have the edge at this time."
Seto dismissed both employees with a nod. "-I'll show you two your rooms before giving you a brief tour of the basics.-"
They were led up stairs to a blue carpeted hallway (something that impressed Seth, who was used to rugs that covered only a small portion of the floor) that split into two others perpendicularly.
"Your rooms are right across the hall from each other and have bathrooms attached to them,-" he explained. "-Marik can explain their use. They are these two here.-"
For the size of the house, the tour was surprisingly brief, though they supposed it was because most of the house would be considered unimportant or 'none of their business.'
Seth found his room much like the one he'd stayed in at the Alexandrian inn, only with one bed and a lot more luxury. Good thing, too, since he was left there with a few books (thankfully in a language that he knew how to read) as soon as the tour had ended. Despite his wealth, Seto did not appear to enjoy hosting.
There was a sound from his door shortly before dinner, startling the young pharaoh. "-Enter.-" When there was no response, he frowned, standing up and stalking toward the door. Swinging it open, he set up his best glare to find… nothing. "-Show yourself.-"
He didn't see the hand in front of his face until he was already stepping forward and through it.
Seth was too shocked to move as he watched the intangible image of a boy about Mokuba's age step back from the spot he'd just moved into, shaking his head with annoyance. "-You know, not everyone around here is as monstrously tall as you and Seto. Look down once in a while.-"
"-What are you?-" he found himself asking automatically.
"-Noa Kaiba,-" the boy said, ignoring the exact phrasing. "-Seto and Mokuba's stepbrother. And I was sent to show you how to get to the dining room, because you'd get lost on your own in all likely hood. So stop gaping and come on.-"
Noa abruptly turned and began walking down the hall, clearly miffed at being called a 'what,' and forcing Seth to hurriedly follow behind him. As blunt as the boy had been, he was right. The halls were confusing and he likely would have lost his way if not for his guide.
They stopped at another door on the way, Noa calling through the wood: "Mokuba, dinner!"
Mokuba shot out of the room almost immediately, running through Noa and almost into Seth, who rubbed his eyes to rid them of the image. The ghost boy showed no other sign of being supernatural in nature (except for perhaps the hair, but he'd seen plenty of odd colors in other magic users) until one tried to come in contact with him. And he was their brother?
Seto and Marik were already in the dining room when he arrived and Seth was thankful to see more familiar dishes covering the table than they'd had at the noon meal. Who had ever heard of eating raw fish anyway?
Seth found himself being awoken by a sharp, rapid sound early in the morning, long before Ra's rising from the looks of the sky outside. He tracked the sound to a small black box with glowing symbols blinking at him. A small note was sitting on the table next to it with a quick sketch of the box, an arrow pointing to an elongated bump-out.
"'-Push the button to make it shut up, Marik,-'" he read. Glancing between the box and paper, he cautiously did as instructed and, thankfully, the sound stopped. "-What a hideous device.-"
As it seemed that no spirit-like Kaiba siblings were coming to show him the way downstairs that morning, Seth was forced to find his own way down to the dining hall. Thankfully, he caught sight of a familiar dark head on the second floor. Catching sight of him, Mokuba blinked up at Seth, only half conscious, before continuing to wander down the hall. Following the boy, Seth found himself being led, not to the dining room, but to a large kitchen where a servant placed a plate in front of each of them before refilling Seto's coffee.
"-Bakura and Atemu should be here in an hour,-" the CEO said without preamble. Before Mokuba had eaten and consumed his usual orange juice, he wouldn't hear a greeting anyway.
"-What is it?-" Seth asked, looking curiously at his food.
"-Bread fried in egg and milk,-" Seto said, setting down his newspaper to take a sip of the coffee. "-The green fruit is an apple. They weren't introduced to Egypt until after your time.-"
His two contemporaries were shown into the kitchen just as the three finished eating., meaning that Mokuba was finally awake enough to say hello.
"-I hope you slept well, cousin,-" Atemu said, taking a seat at the table.
"-At least until some shrieking box woke me,-" Seth said with a nod.
"-Alarm clock,-" Bakura said, smirking. "-The bane of peaceful mornings, but fun when placed in someone else's room.-"
"-Is that why Ryou's always so early to class?-" Seto asked, eyebrow raised. The thief's grin was answer enough.
"-What will we be doing today?-" the new pharaoh asked, curious.
"-We have some errands to run for Sugoroku, so we'll show you the parts of the city that we can before heading back to the shop for the after school rush,-" Atemu explained. "-Then the hikari plan to take over.-"
"-Why does that worry me?-" Seth thought out loud as he accepted the coat his doppelganger had lent him. How it had gotten into the kitchen he wasn't quite sure. "-Will Marik be coming with us?-"
Atemu glanced over to Seto, unsure on the answer. The priest snorted, shaking his head. "The tomb keeper has stated that we're all mad and that the world is ending. He'll be fine by later in the afternoon."
The game king blinked. "-Guess not.-"
Oddly enough Seth found his training for fighting useful when following the two around their city, especially in dodging the vehicles that seemed intent on running them over as they crossed the streets. Over the course of the day he learned that the country leaders ordered children up to such an age to be rounded up each day for schooling. While a noble idea, Seth couldn't quite fit his mind around the idea of hundreds of children in one place where their tutors managed to not only keep them orderly but teach them as well.
"-There are reasons why teachers sometimes go mad,-" Bakura said with a laugh when Seth voiced his thoughts.
Atemu snorted. "-Especially when they're around white-haired students with homicidal tendencies?-"
"-Hey, don't go blaming Ryou for that!-"
At the end of the week Seth couldn't decide whether to be relieved or disappointed to be seeing the shores of Egypt again. At his insistence they had taken a train and then a ship this time, despite the fact that it added a few days to the trip. It was a much smaller group traveling to escort him home: only his cousin, Marik, and Yuugi.
"-Who knows, maybe Ra will let us visit again,-" Yugi said, grinning as they stood on deck, waiting for the dock men to finish tying the mooring lines.
Seth laughed. "-No offense, Yugi, but I'm not sure if Egypt could survive another encounter with you and my cousin's court. Best to keep the dead and the living in their own worlds and times. You will be missed, though."
"-Not by Shu and Geb, especially once they finish unpacking their things after settling back into the palace,-" the hikari said, innocent. "-I think my grandfather found some curses to me carved on the temple walls when he was younger. Didn't really understand them until recently.-"
"-Yugi, Seth, time to go!-" Marik called, waving them over to the ramp. He and Atemu already stood with Ishizu and a guard down on the dock waiting for them.
"-We're going to leave immediately for the valley, where Ra will be meeting us come sunset,-" Atemu said as they regrouped. "-Do try to avoid getting into another war.-"
"-I didn't try to get into this last one,-" Seth said, glancing down at his cousin with a smile. It looked as though he would be leaving Atemu this time around.
Many hours later he found himself embracing his two kin (Yugi was part of Atemu, after all) as they watched the sky begin to color. No more words were exchanged as Ra's power enveloped him and took the young pharaoh home.
"-You're absolutely sure that they said a week,-" Isis fretted, pacing back and forth in the throne room. Shada sat on the steps leading up to the royal chair, trying not to watch her for fear of getting dizzy again.
"-Yes, a week, seven days,-" he said, resting his forehead in one palm. "-The day isn't over yet, Isis. Would you please stop worrying and sit down?-"
"-Two vanishing acts in as many months,- she said, thankfully stopping her pacing. "-He's as bad as Atemu.-"
"-I'm not sure whether or not I should take that as a complement.-"
Both priests froze, shock on their faces as they turned to face the throne. Looking incredibly amused as he peered down at his two old friends was Seth. Isis let out a cry before dashing up the steps to hug him before pulling back to slap the man upside the head. "-That's what you get for making us worry again!-"
Seth laughed in good humor. "-It's not as though I asked them to jump me the moment they were being pulled back to their world.-"
"-Did you at least enjoy yourself over there while we were turning white with worry?-" Shada asked, standing up and going to join them.
"-None of this leaves this room,-" Seth said firmly. The two nodded eagerly. "-I have some very strange and interesting tales to tell you...-"