Disclaimer: Yu-Gi-Oh! is the intellectual property of Kazuki Takahashi
Author's Comments: Deleted and reformated. This fic had some very nice reviews when it was first put up and I hope that those people come back to review this time around, along with all new people of course! This was originally the first fanfic uploaded onto this site and I have a soft spot for it. I like it, only I still don't like the title but...I've "let it go". Yea.
-Rated for swearing.
Journal Surprise – part 1: The Absolute Need for a Stupid Plan
"Fuck off, pharaoh! How I treat my hikari is none of your damn business! Go deal with your own!"
"I am! You just happen to be everyone's problem! You interrupt Yugi's studying, your fowl mouth pollutes the environment, your phantasmic escapades draw attention to all of us, and your vulgar displays of …uncivilized behavior are corrupting Ryou!"
"Ryou's too naive. He needs to be corrupted or he won't survive in this environment. What's your vertically challenged little "aibou" gonna do when he's attacked? You can't go around stalking him 24/7. At least my hikari knows how to tell someone to fuck off!"
"I do not stalk him. And do not ever assume that your psychotic methods are the correct way to handle anything!"
Ryou and Yugi did their best to ignore their two quarreling "others" in the background as they sat at their usual table in the school cafeteria quietly eating their lunch. It didn't do any good to get involved, either on their own or each other's behalf.
For the moment, Marik was watching them like one would watch a television wrestling match, absently stealing food off Malik's tray but more often than not, he was right in there with them.
The yamis fought. That was just all there was to it, and sometimes Malik and Jou joined in. If Ryou and Yugi were to get involved it would only get out of hand, and they knew that from experience.
Today was a rare day. Jounouchi, who normally sat across from Seto, was sitting next to him, currently leaning over to try to see what the brunette was typing on his computer.
Seto firmly insisted that he only sat there because if he didn't Yugi wouldn't quit bugging him to, so he sat there in an effort to shut him up but sitting there or not, the only thing Seto ever did was type on his laptop and nibble on his food while he ignored them.
Today, as Jounouchi was leaning over his shoulder to get a better view of his work, the blonde happened to take a French fry from the other's tray and with it half-way to his mouth Seto spoke.
"Put it back."
Jounouchi's hand stopped half way to his open mouth as he regarded the CEO who had never even looked sideways at him when he'd spoken.
Jounouchi wasn't exactly the brightest crayon in the box so Seto graciously decided to elaborate.
"That's not for dogs." he stated firmly, taking the French fry from the other's hand and placing it back on the tray without ever taking his eyes from the computer screen. "I forgot to bring your kibble today, so you'll have to beg for scraps from someone else."
Jounouchi growled (unfortunately sounding like the dog Seto was constantly accusing him of being) and slammed his hands on the table as he shot up indicating to all who recognized the gesture that they ought to back away slowly as an eruption had just occurred.
"I am not a dog!"
Suddenly the yamis' fighting seemed a distant annoyance.
"And what the fuck do you care! It's not like you were gonna eat it. You never eat nothin'!"
"Anything." Seto corrected calmly.
"Listen here moneybags!" he yelled, hauling Seto up by the shirt front. "Just cause I don't go ta school fer the hell of it an then blow it off when I get there cause I've got a company dat nobodys good enough ta help me run doesn't mean I'm stupid!"
Jounouchi's accent tended to thicken and his language degrade when he was angry, drawing even more attention to the situation. He also tended to ramble, sometimes losing the original insult as he went and making it hard for by standers to keep up.
"An just cause you think I'm stupid doesn't make me a dog!"
He started shaking the brunette violently at which point Seto finally decided to react, taking Jounouchi firmly by the wrist and prying him off him, flinging his hand away with amazing force, glaring blue icicles at the blonde.
"Don't start something you can't finish, mutt. You aren't in my league."
And there it was; the last straw. The whole time, every onlooker had been waiting for it to fall. If there was anything Katsuya Jounouchi took pride in, it was his skills in a fight. Jounouchi had bad grades, sometimes got beat in Duel Monsters, and was horrible at flirting, but he had never once lost a one-on-one fist fight. To Jounouchi, it was the ultimate insult. To suggest that Seto Kaiba, of all people, could best him was as good as spitting in his face.
Jounouchi was livid. He would send Kaiba to the moon! But Yugi panicked. Seto didn't come off as a fighter but Yugi knew from experience that Seto Kaiba never entered into anything he didn't intend to win, and if he thought he could win against Jounouchi, he must have had some hidden asset. The last thing Yugi wanted was to see Seto beat Jounouchi at his best event – it would destroy him. Jounouchi was his best friend and he couldn't stand the thought of the pain that would cause him.
It was a good thing he was a fast thinker, Yugi reflected, because jumping between them would do squat without a good excuse.
"Don't try an' stop me, Yug." Jounouchi warned. "This time he's gone too far."
"But Jounouchi, you'll be expelled." Yugi tried – plan A.
"It's worth it." his friend growled, amber eyes glaring with fiery hatred to match his opponent's ice.
"But if you're expelled again you won't graduate! Please." Jounouchi looked down at his friend, the hard glint in his eyes softening at the other's concern.
"You should listen to your friend." Seto said. And Yugi could hear the taunting tone in his voice. He could see it coming a mile off. Wasn't there anything he could say to interrupt him? Think. Think. THINK! "It wouldn't look very good to be expelled for the one fight you lost."
The fire flared in Jounouchi's eyes as he turned back to Seto. "We'll settle this after school. Then we'll see who looks bad when they lose."
No no no…Damn! Yugi fumed internally. Scratch plan A.
The remainder of Yugi's day was spent trying to come up with a plan to save his best friend, well, more like trying to foil Jounouchi's "greatest one-punch-knock-out in all history" fight – as he had dubbed it. He was sure Jounouchi would do the same for him, well, more like Jounouchi would beat the guy to a bloody pulp for him but – whatever was your strong suit…
Yugi sighed, slumping down in his seat during study hall. The class was doing research in the library for various projects today and he had chosen a small table tucked away in a little-used corner so that he could work on his own "projects" without the teacher getting after him. She probably had forgotten he was even there.
"Perhaps you should allow Jounouchi to fight his own fights, aibou." a new voice said as Yami materialized on the edge of the table. "A loss now and then can be character building. What would he learn if he never faced difficult challenges but only fought those he knew he could win against?"
Yugi looked up and frowned slightly at his other half. "I don't know. Why don't you tell me." Yami caught the meaning of that instantly. "You really have no place to talk" Yugi went on, dropping his head to the table face first "having never lost at anything."
"Perhaps not. But I still believe we should allow others to fight their own battles. It's not exactly the end of the world after all, even if he loses."
Yugi sighed defeatedly. "It's not just that."
"It was actually something Anzu said."
Yami waited patiently for his light to continue but Yugi was hesitant.
"You know, she's a girl and all, so, you know, she outta know these things."
"What did she say, aibou?"
Yugi propped his chin on his arms before he began. "Well, we were talking the other day. And she said that she's been noticing, sometimes during class, Kaiba stares at Jou when he's not looking. At first I thought maybe he's just staring off into space or something or maybe she's completely insane but Anzu said she thought that maybe Kaiba liked him. She said sometimes boys are mean to the people they like because it gets their attention and I started thinking I don't think Kaiba really sits with us because I was annoying him, especially if he doesn't like Jou like he says, why would he sit across from him every day and listen to him go on and on and never say anything? And why would he bother to go so far to antagonize Jou if he didn't like seeing his reaction? It can't be out of spite because Jou is the only one he fights with. And it's just, if there is something there, I wouldn't want it ruined cause they're both stubborn assess who just went too far and couldn't back out."
Yami blinked, trying to process this new bit of information – High Priest of Egypt Seth, Seto Kaiba, CEO of Kaiba Corporations, in love with street-smart, wise-ass Jounouchi Katsuya. That took a moment to process.
"But…Jounouchi isn't…what was that word your mother used the other day?"
"Gay?" Yugi supplied.
"Yes, that was it. He's not gay, is he?"
Yugi leaned back in his chair with a sigh. "I have no idea."
In the end, Yugi's brilliant idea, promptly titled "The Brilliant Idea Formerly Known As Plan B", came from a conversation he overheard while on his way to the fateful fight.
A group of girls were gathered on the school steps whispering and giggling, huddled in a circle around someone's diary. Some girl had wrote in her diary that she had the biggest crush on the brother of her sisters friend – apparently the sister now had the diary and one of the girls said something which Yugi could not remember for the life of him, to which another had replied "Yea, your diary is like the only place you can admit to liking a guy these days, cause like…" Yugi didn't hear the rest, presumably she had gone on about "guys these days", Yugi was already running, on his way to Jounouchi's parking lot with plan B.
"Jounouchi's parking lot" was the place he held all his after school fights. It was so well known, to Jounouchi, the place was practically sacred. He even met challenges from other schools there. Yugi and Honda had their own reserved seats in the front row.
Yugi had never really condoned violence but he could understand that Jounouchi never turned down a challenge – that philosophy seemed rather popular these days, and he sent that thought pointedly to his other, plus, it was kinda fun to cheer his friend on and share in his victories.
Today, Jounouchi was waiting for Seto Kaiba and the parking lot was empty, not even Honda was there – this was a personal fight. It was better for Yugi's plan anyway. Without a crowd, there would be less pressure to make good on their word. Kaiba wasn't there yet, that was good, he would be a few minutes yet. Kaiba always waited for the best time to make an entrance.
Yugi took a seat at the edge of the parking lot and got out his cell phone, watching Jounouchi flex his muscles several yards away while he dialed the number and grinning at the slight irritation from that certain part of his mind as he watched.
"Hello, Mokuba, this is Yugi. I'm plotting against your brother today. Wanna help?"
By the time Seto Kaiba arrived the stage had been set. Yugi had already told Jounouchi that he had something very important to say to them both before their fight and Jounouchi, being his friend and also rather naive, had reluctantly agreed to hear him out.
Kaiba entered the parking lot looking as though he were headed to a board meeting, in other words, not exactly happy to be there. Yugi asked them to sit down. Jounouchi sat down so Kaiba didn't really have much choice in the matter though he did his share of grumbling over it.
"I hate it the way you guys always fight all the time. And I don't just mean you guys either." he added pointedly.
Yami materialized next to him with a surprised rather hurt expression on his face. "You can't possibly be blaming me for Bakura's idiocy."
"You're always fighting." Yugi complained. "I can understand if everyone doesn't get along but whenever anyone in our group talks anymore it escalates into a fight."
"That isn't true." Yami reasoned gently. "Yugi glared at him. "What about the other day when Ryou said raisin cookies were the best and Malik and Bakura ended up in a fist fight over it?"
Yami remained silent.
"One French fry starts an argument." Yugi went on and Jounouchi looked elsewhere and Kaiba frowned. "I understand if your pride's been hurt and this has to be settled with your fists, there's just one thing I wanted to do first."
"Like what?" Jounouchi asked, a little curious now that it involved him.
"A group thing. No talking or anything. Just something I learned about recently."
"I am not doing any sort of group social activities with you friendship geeks." Seto informed firmly.
Well, that was the cue.
Jounouchi glared at Seto and would have spoken if a new voice hadn't cut him off. "That sounds like fun."
Everyone looked to find Mokuba heading their way.
"Hey, we could do it at our house. What do you think big brother?"
"What!" Seto looked like he was on the verge of a heart attack.
"We can invite lots of people and serve dinner and play games." Mokuba went on happily. "It'll be fun! Don't you think so, big brother?" he asked, wrapping his arms around Seto's neck.
"No!" Seto protested, trying in vain to pull away.
"Is Friday ok?" Yugi asked, not wanting to give Seto a chance to actually refuse the request.
"Friday's great!" Mokuba exclaimed. "I don't have a bed time on the weekends and Seto promised me I could have friends over sometime, remember?" he asked, turning to his brother.
"Then we'll be over on Friday." Yugi replied, grabbing Jounouchi by the wrist.
"Wait!" Seto cried franticly but Yugi was already dragging Jounouchi away, waving happily over his shoulder as they went.
"You poor poor man." Yami muttered of Kaiba before he too vanished, leaving Seto alone in Jounouchi's parking lot with his ecstatic, seemingly oblivious little brother.
Post whatevers: The next two parts will be uploaded soon. Please review if you liked it.