Disclaimer: I do not own YugiOh.
Warnings: Yaoi. Incest.

White Roses

Mokuba remembered.

When he was very small, they lived in a yellow house with a garden full of white roses in the back. Although he never fully recalled it, the garden had not always been a garden because it was once only concrete. Mokuba knew this, because he vividly remembered a nasty fall in the yard that permanently chipped one of his baby teeth. He had cried for over three hours straight, only, he had been a toddler then, and the hours had seemed an eternity.

Seto had tried ceaselessly to stop his tears.

Mokuba recalled fondly the younger Nii-sama that had hugged, caressed, and wiped away the salty liquid on his younger brother's cheeks. In those days, Otou-san, as a widower and the sole provider for the family, was often at work. Money was tight, so they had no babysitter to look after them. Often it had been just him and Nii-sama at home. But in that, childish, selfish moment of the fall, baby Mokuba had thought it wasn't enough.

"Where Tou-san? Where Ka-san? Where? Where? Where!" Mokuba screamed with his bruised bottom placed stubbornly on the floor. Nii-sama wasn't big enough to lift Mokuba yet, so Seto crouched down on the hard stone baking in the mid-afternoon to join him. Nii-sama began sing to Mokuba then, a soft lullaby with half forgotten words.

After the tune's last notes wavered away, Seto said, "That is mother."

Mokuba's sobs turned into quiet sniffles, and Seto brought him into the house. They faced a mirror in the hallway.

"Until Otou-san returns. There is father," Nii-sama said, pointing at mirror-Mokuba's black eyes. Mokuba blinked, noticing something about his mirror-Nii-sama and tugged the real Seto down until he could run his chubby hands through his brother's hair. It was a familiar brown color.

"Tou-san here, too!" He gurgled happily, his attention successfully diverted. "Where Mokuba?"

Nii-sama pressed a finger against his little brother's nose, and whispered, "Here." Then Seto looked confused for a moment, his jaw clenched and then relaxed as if he were tackling a particularly hard problem. Half bewildered at his own actions, Nii-sama drew Mokuba's hand and placed it against his chest. Mokuba felt the pulse of Seto's heartbeat underneath his small palm, and after a few moments of drumming silence with Seto's eyebrows scrunched in thought, the older sibling said, "And here, too. Always."

Mokuba laughed at Seto's puzzled face. "Where Nii-sama?" He poked at Seto's nose in a copy-cat gesture. "There Nii-sama!"

Seto's gaze was soft and tender, and a bit apprehensive, as if waiting for something more. Baby Mokuba raised his hand, and then hesitated. How could he be in Nii-sama, and Nii-sama be in him? Even though he was only three, Mokuba thought for a moment he was wiser than his brother. Then the thought flitted away as all young thoughts do. The chubby hand dropped, the moment was forgotten, and Mokuba grinned, his loose tooth throbbing just a little. He knew something that would soothe it.

"Ice cream! Now!"

When Otou-san found them, he yelled at Seto for giving Mokuba a stomach ache. He yelled at Seto even though he could not look Seto in the eye, even though Mokuba was the one who had begged for the sweet.

Mokuba remembered that when he was three, he was a fool.

When Mokuba was ten, the gardens around their mansion too, were full of roses, full of pure white roses. Once, a stray red flower bloomed in one severely pruned bush, and Seto, in overalls and gloves, knelt down and promptly clipped it off. "We'll have to watch this one," the duelist murmured to himself.

Mokuba looked up from his handheld video game. Mokuba's expression was curious, attentive, although his body remained relaxed and reclined in the lawn chair. "Why?"

"It won't match the others," Seto said, rising from his knees and sweeping his arm across the courtyard. A nearby fountain bubbled with pale blue-eyed dragons carved of white marble. Beyond it, the walkways were made of colorless gravel, meticulously swept by staff everyday. And beyond that, beyond the green foliage of the gardens, their mansion loomed like a cliff of limestone. Bathed in sunshine, it was bright and blinding.

Mokuba blinked away and looked at the muted red of the rose instead. "I like it."

Seto handed the rose to him carefully after shearing off its thorns. Nii-sama's gaze was distant, his voice was odd. "The gardens used to have a lot of red roses. I don't know why. I think Gozaburo planted them. Maybe they were for his wife. Maybe they were for Noa. Someone precious to him."

Mokuba kept his mouth shut.

"Do you think we should let them grow back, Mokuba?" Seto asked in the silence.

"No." Mokuba dropped the flower, not caring where it landed.

In the middle of the night, Mokuba couldn't sleep. In his pajamas, he crept down to the gardens and yanked out the bush with bare hands and threw it into the compost heap. Mokuba plucked the stray thorns, one by one out of his hands. He made his way back to the house, and rummaged through one of the bathroom for the first aid kit. Bandages in hand, he walked down the hall and just for a moment, paused in front of Seto's door. Then Mokuba crept back into his own bedroom and began to wrap his hands even though it was hard to do so with just one hand working at a time. Spots of red budded underneath the white fabric. He bound and rebound them over and over, so that his hands were white and clean -- the way Seto preferred in everything. In the morning, however, Seto found a mysterious bunch of colorful origami blooms in his pencil holder by the desk. There was a note that read "These are for Nii-sama ONLY" and there was a gentle lightness in Seto's voice the whole day.

Mokuba remembered that when he was ten, he began to understand.

One day, and Mokuba recalled it clearly, he was fourteen, and sitting on the leather couch in Nii-sama's office. He was remembering Otou-san's roses and Gozaburo's roses. Remembering how Seto had gazed at them.


Nii-sama glanced up. Then bent back down to his work.


Glance up. Glance down.



"Yes Mokuba, is anything wrong?"

"Where is Otou-san? Where is Okaa-san?"

The elder Kaiba startled in confusion. Mokuba could see Seto struggling to rememeber, humming the broken fragments of a song underneath his lips. Seto knelt in front of Mokuba and took Mokuba's face in his hands. Seto stared into the obsidian eyes and began to speak. But Mokuba interrupted him.

"No. This is Mokuba," Mokuba said pointing at himself. He rose from the sofa and caressed a lock of Seto's hair. "And this is Nii-sama and Seto." He stared into Seto's blue eyes. "And there is Nii-sama and Seto. There is no Okaa-san, and no Otou-san. Only Mokuba and Seto here."


"They were wrong. Otou-san looked into your eyes and saw Okaa-san. Gozaburo looked into your eyes and saw Noa. But you were not Okaa-san and you were not Noa. So...they...it's not your fault. Now smile for me."

Mokuba embraced his brother. The body in Mokuba's arms stiffened, then relaxed. There was no change in Seto's face, but Mokuba believed what he hoped for would come in time.

Mokuba remembered being fifteen. He remembered feeling great joy and pride because he was grown up. He felt these things because for the first time, he was sure he understood Seto, and because he fell in love.

He came back whistling, a teenage boy who had successfully completed his first date, and found his brother in the garden.

"Seto, what are you doing?"


In pots all around their garden, there were rosebushes, all white, lined in endless rows of lucky thirteen.

"All of them!"

"Yes," Seto grunted as he packed the soil around a new implant. The CEO was tanned from the sun and sweating. Dirty from dirt and labor. He was not white or clean.

"Are you sure?" Mokuba wheedled.

"Yes," Seto snapped. Something in his voice was angry and defensive. At the reprimand, Mokuba felt small and scuffed his shoe against the grass. He waited, but Seto ignored him.

"Don't you want to hear how it went?"

Seto's shoulders sagged ever so slightly and his voice sounded like a blade of dried grass, struggling to bend into whatever shape a harsh wind wished. "How did it go?"

"Well." Mokuba smiled.


Mokuba waited, but there was nothing more. Eventually, he gave up, and left Seto to his Herculean task in the gardens.

During that same summer, the new white flowers bloomed and trailed over the trellises, even over the front gate. Seto began to go out. Mokuba's female friends made sure he saw the pictures in every magazine. A new woman on the new, most eligible bachelor's arm every week. Thousands of red roses arrived everyday, along with love letters and charms. Seto embraced the clipped, thorn-less blossoms like treasures and spent obsessive hours burying his face in them. He stacked them in vases, left them strewed across his bedroom floor. Framed mirrors with them. They overflowed. The volume approached, then matched, then exceeded their own garden's yield of white blossoms.

The heady scent of red roses is heavier than that of white ones. Mokuba began to get headaches. He found himself snarling as he swiped each surface clean although the floor of their house just became more littered.

One day, Seto brought home a man.

"Hey there, darling," the tall blonde said at the door with a cheeky smile, kissing the corner of Seto's lips as if they were long-time lovers instead of first time acquaintances.


"Okay, whatever you say, sexy," the man drawled from the doorstep, flourishing a long-stemmed rose from behind him. Then he peeked around Mokuba's brother at the mass of blossoms that hung everywhere. "Wow. Is there a place where this lowly mortal too, can place an offering?"

"I don't thi-"

"How about the bedroom?" The man quirked a suggestive eyebrow, and dashed upstairs without waiting for a response. Seto followed, shell-shocked. Mokuba tailed them.

"Nice," the man said, glancing around the room he guessed was Seto's. The blue sheets and dragon miniature on by the dresser mirror gave it away. The man smirked, placing his rose against the sheets of Seto's bed, the one intimate place that had remained purposely cleared of gifts. He leered. Seto started at the man's audacity. Mokuba stomped over, crushing the buds beneath his feet.

"You. Out. Now," he gritted.

"Hey there, pipsqueak," the man said casually, ruffling his hair.

Mokuba called the guards and they threw the man out. Seto sat on the bed and fingered the rose thoughtfully in the same way he assessed new business propositions. Mokuba snatched it away.

"You don't need this. It's filthy," Mokuba dropped the flower, not caring where it landed, and crushed it under his feet, smothering it with spite.


"You don't need what he's offering. You don't want it," Mokuba snarled.

Seto did not answer.

Mokuba's gnarled face smoothed slowly until it lost all its rage. His voice became half-afraid, half-inquiring, young again. "Nii-sama?"

Seto was gazing at the crushed rose with a kind of drugged un-attachment, and a kind of twisted, miserable longing.

"Nii-sama?" Mokuba crept slowly forward and knelt between his brother's legs. He wrapped his hands around his brother's waist and buried his face against Seto's stomach. "Please, just be you again. Be Nii-sama again."

For the first time Mokuba could recall, Seto trembled.

A great while later, Mokuba felt hands reciprocate his gesture, and a rusty timorous voice said with all the conviction it could muster, "Call the maids. I want this whole house cleaned out of red roses within two hours."

Mokuba remembered when he was almost sixteen, Seto began returning to himself again. Mokuba also remembered his first kiss with a cheerful girl in his class. She had first captured him with the promise of warm brown eyes, a shy smile, and a glowing personality.

Their kiss tasted of ashes.

When Mokuba was eighteen, he leaned against the doorknob and said, "I'm going overseas."

Seto faltered in mid-shave, but did not turn from the bathroom mirror. "Uh-huh."

"I said I'm going overseas."

"Hmm," Seto replied, flicking the shaving cream off his razor.

"I'm doing drugs."

Seto continued to trim the right side of his jaw.

"I'm getting a harem."

Seto squinted at the mirror, and reached for the aftershave.

"I'm joining the circus, donating my sperm for money, sleeping with your vice president's wife, and investing in nuclear arms all across the world before joining my secret male lover of thirty years in America."

There was a thoughtful pause, then, "You weren't even born then. Come over here. You need a shave, too."

Among all the lies fabricated to test Seto's attention, Mokuba's brother managed to glean the one truth. Mokuba was going to get a college education, and he was doing it on the other side of the world.

Robbed of the intimacy they felt at home, the brothers stood a good feet apart in the airport terminal as a woman's voice rambled on about cancellations and late flights, but all that mattered was that Mokuba's plane was on time and that it would be taking off in a few minutes.


"Mokuba," Seto said after a brief spell of silent surprise. "Nii-sama" was an endearment rarely uttered these days by the boy who had grown just shy of reaching Seto's height. This boy who had grown up in so many ways. This boy who was looking down at his feet, deceptively a small child again.

"Where is Otou-san? Where is Okaa-san?" Mokuba asked, but before Seto could reply, Mokuba lifted his head and answered his own question with a new found wisdom. "They are in heaven and in our thoughts, but they are not you and me." Mokuba smiled and continued. "Where is Mokuba? Here, he is," Mokuba said, placing a palm against Seto's heart. "Where is Seto?"

Seto smirked, and moved Mokuba's palm. He manipulated his younger sibling's fingers until they pointed at the elder brother's nose.

"No. Seto's not there," Mokuba said, withdrawing from Seto and latching onto one of Seto's hands. He drew Seto's palm to his chest where Mokuba's heart beat the rhythm of sincerity. "Seto's here. Always. I understand now, Nii-sama."

Seto smiled, and there were tears in his eyes.

It had been a bid for independence. Too long, Mokuba had felt sheltered in Japan. He felt it was time to experience the world, and to grow wise, so he could come home, and look at Seto as an equal. He wanted to cross the distance that separated, even as it bound. He wanted to overcome the terrible burden carried with the word "Nii-sama."

For Mokuba, it was a beginning.

When he first arrived in New York, he was not himself; his English was accented, and he rarely spoke. Mokuba understood the value of presenting a good image of himself. It was imperative that he looked as if he belonged. If he looked as if he was experienced, as if he knew what he was doing, then he couldn't be taken advantage of. He thought of Seto entering merger meetings, all necessary people and data at his side. Mokuba had felt the other negotiator literally shake when his brother had laced his courteous opening gesture with steel, "Let's make a deal, gentlemen." There was no compromise, all roads let to one consequence: the one Seto preferred. And so, slowly, Mokuba found the people he could trust and those he could not. He learned to smile and he learned to laugh. He learned when to be guarded. He learned when to be tough. When things were safe, his normal outgoing personality re-emerged, and he learned to use it to attract friends, and he learned to use it to flood and drown his enemies in terrible death.

The first thing he bought after textbooks was a map of the city. He sent it to Seto.

"I can tell you about any interesting places I visit, and you'll know where they are, and where I am," Mokuba said excitedly into the phone.

"What a complicated subway system," Seto murmured. His voice was thick with sleep. The long distance call had come at an inopportune time, but Seto did not mention the time difference between New York and Domino City, especially when Mokuba's voice throbbed as it did, pulsing with restrained wonder.

"There's this great library on Fifth Avenue, Forty-Second Street. Very old. It has stone lions guarding the plaza. It reminded me of the three Blue-Eyes in front of Kaiba Corp," Mokuba continued.

"I've torn them down," Seto replied, shifting his fingers over the map until he found the area. He scribbled, "Library - stone lions" on a small piece of paper before attaching it with scotch tape to a pin. He then inserted the pin through the paper and into the foam board at the specified location.

"What do you mean, you tore them down?"

"They were badly made at the base. The foundation crumbled during an earthquake."


"Don't worry, it was just a small one," Seto said wryly. "Kaiba Corp's still standing and so am I."

"Why didn't you tell me?"

"Well, there was nothing you could do."

"Yes, but -- are you planning on restoring the statues?"

"I don't know. I might just retire them," Seto hedged. His words were almost inaudible.

"Retire! Seto, are you feeling alright?"

"I'm just a little tired, that's all Mokuba," Seto's voice recovered before lumbering like a heavy giant in a too crowded room. "It's five in the morning, here. Don't you have class? You don't have to call everyday. I know it's a burden."

"It's not a bur-"

The phone disconnected with a click.

"Nii-sama?" Mokuba made sure his voice on the phone was meek this time. He didn't want to jar his brother with harsh tones if Seto was still feeling drained the next day at two in the afternoon, Japan time.

"Mokuba! Is something wrong?"

"No...I just wanted to talk."


"What are you doing?"

"Planting. How's school? The people?"

"It was shaky at first, but I'm settling in. I met this guy."


"Yep. Very talkative. Very annoying. Very brilliant."

"Sounds very annoying."

"Yep. Now stop parroting me!"

"There's that 'yep' again," Seto's voice said, full of curiosity.

"American slang. If you think that's funny, you should hear some of the idioms they

"I'm sure this mysterious 'guy' has been teaching you many of them."


"Mokuba, I'm glad that you're making friends, and other...types...of people."

"Nii-sama! It's not like th-"

"It's a burden to you. You don't have to call me everyday. The phone bill's very high, and I know we agreed to put you on a budget. Take care, Mokuba. You will not call me again until next week."

The phone disconnected.

Eventually, once a week morphed into once every three weeks. Mokuba learned to deal with it; after all, he had a life to lead, too.

"Hey, why so excited?" Tanya said with her plate of pasta, sliding into the chair next to Mokuba as he munched on a tuna sandwich. They were making use of a student lounge that had generous wooden tables and cushioned seats.

"He can call his brother tomorrow. He doesn't get to do it often, though he makes up for it by writing frequently." Steve, the "guy" smiled as he slid into the empty chair on Mokuba's left. He had take-out pizza encased in a paper bag. It crinkled as he dug for it.

"Brother?" Tanya inquired.

"Yep. And right after, he gets moody for about a week. It's Seto this, Seto that, all the time. You're lucky you're not his roommate."

"Sorry, I'm not enough of a party animal to want to try to convince the department for a co-ed room," Tanya jibed. She turned towards Mokuba, "Are you and your brother close?"

"Yeah," Mokuba said, slipping his tongue against another junk-food morsel of the many ways to affirm something in America. "We're close. He's the only family I have."

"Oh...but the way you carry on. I mean, geez, he's just your brother!" Steve teased.

"He's not just a Nii-sama!" Mokuba spat, outraged. He slipped back into Japanese without knowing it. "You don't know Nii-sama! The things he sacrificed, the person he is. Not even Yuugi-tachi."

Mokuba's two friends blinked perplexedly at each other.

"I'll bite, Mokuba. Tell us about your brother, we do want to know more. He seems really important to you," Tanya soothed.

"He's not just Nii-sama. He's Seto," Mokuba said despairingly, knowing he had lost them.

"That's not much to work with," Steve said gently.

"No...It's everything," Mokuba whispered.

Mokuba remembered living this way for a few years. One day, he could reach the last inch to the top shelf of the cupboard and had to shave three times as often as he had when he first arrived. Graduation was around the corner. In Mokuba's new single apartment, a man stirred from Mokuba's bed sheets and pulled on his jeans.


"Hey." Mokuba, although half-asleep, managed to twist around from the kitchen counter. "Want pancakes?"


"Blueberry and cream, right?"

"No. Honey and strawberries," the man, Mokuba's first drunken one-night stand, and first in many other ways, said suspiciously. "I told you about that yesterday."

"Oh, sorry."

"Hey, is there something tomorrow?" the man asked, glancing at the date circled in red on Mokuba's calendar.

"A phone call. A phone call I have to make."

"Is it important?"

Mokuba stared into the man's blue eyes, and he was there. "Of course...Nii-sama."

Mokuba remembered dreaming a lot.

Baby Mokuba toddled up to him, "Where Nii-sama?"

Mokuba smiled and bent down to place the tiny hand on his heart. "Here. Nii-sama is here."

"No he's not. He's in Japan and you flew far away. So far away, Nii-sama doesn't want you back," Baby Mokuba said.

Mokuba stared in horror.

Baby Mokuba only laughed and reached out a demanding arm. "Ice cream! Now!"

"N-Nii-sama," Mokuba's voice wavered on the phone.

"Mokuba. How are you feeling?" Seto's voice was gentle, worried above the shuffling of papers.

"Two days ago, I did something. Today, I regret it."

"What was - no...Did it hurt? Does it still hurt?"

"I don't know. I feel hollow. A bad dream, too."

"Shh. Everything will be okay, Mokuba. It's just a dream."

"No, you don't understand. The thing I did was real. I just had a bad dream, too."

"Don't think about it. The past is the past. You can't change it. You have to acknowledge it to move forward. Don't forget you're Mokuba Kaiba. Now...why don't we talk about happier things? Tell me about the city. I have the map with me. I made a copy for the office."

"Nii-sama, where is Mokuba?"

There was a pause. Seto realized the delicacy of the situation, and then the tone came, extra smooth and calming. "He's here. Mokuba's here."

Mokuba couldn't see Seto's hand gesture, and he needed more reassurance. "Where?"

"In my chest. In every beat of my heart."

"Thank you, Seto...I love you."

"Love you, too." The answering whisper was thick. Then the phone line disconnected, but this time, Mokuba had managed to say almost everything he wanted to.

A person can change a lot in a few years, in over two decades. A person can recall too much and recall too little at the same time. Mokuba was still Mokuba, but it was only now that he felt awake. The years before seemed like a dream, or perhaps a too narrow view of the world. But finally the blinders were off. A metallic bird was winging its way home, and Mokuba, just newly graduated, sat through the long, long trip, thinking and understanding, and remembering.

When he arrived at the airport from which he had left so long ago, he found Seto waiting.

His stance was still imposing, and wary, and his eyes darted constantly, assessing the possible dangers in an unknown environment. But although the gaze was sharp and clean like an instrument meant to lance and cauterize a wound, Seto felt almost yielding. He was dressed in creams, tans, and wore loafers. Everything was cotton knit, no metal or harsh fibers. Mokuba stared, and began to call out.

"Ni - Seto!"

Seto froze like a deer in headlights. Mokuba waited for his brother to approach, but the normally take-charge Kaiba did not. So, Mokuba did.

"Seto." Mokuba smiled, and then frowned when he realized he was staring at his brother's eyebrows. He dropped his gaze a little to meet blue orbs. "Seto...I missed you."

"Missed you too, kiddo."

"Don't call me that."


"Sorry, I didn't mean to snap at you." Mokuba linked his arm around one of Seto's. "I have a present for you."

"Thanks." Seto accepted the white box in confusion. They walked on, Seto a bit stiffly.

"What's wrong?"

"Nothing. I'm just not used to this. I'm used to feeling you tug on my arm, and looking down."

"But this is nice, too, right? Now I can lean on you, and you can lean on me," Mokuba pressed gently.

"Yes, it is," Seto replied, tightening his hold a little.

Seto drove and they passed by Kaiba Corp.

"You restored them after all."


Seto pulled out of traffic, into the courtyard, and rolled down the side window to allow Mokuba a better look. A few security guards approached but kept their distance when they recognized their employer. They saluted, and wandered away.

"Two are different," Mokuba said. One Blue-Eyes dragon was as it had been before; it still looked fierce, flaunting its tail and talons. But another one looked drowsy, in the midst of dreams. It was curled into itself, its eyes were closed. The one in the middle of the trio was most changed and looked almost benign. Its wings were spread out, curved before a large egg protected gently under its right hind foot.

"I thought it was time for balance," Seto said. He offered no more, and in the car, Mokuba leaned against Seto's shoulder and was allowed to place a hand on his knee.

"I'm not a burden, am I?" Mokuba asked, thinking of the egg.

"Of course not!" Seto eased the car back into traffic.

"You're not a burden either. Don't ever think that."

"Seto, you have white hairs."


They were at home on the sofa, and after much persuading, Mokuba had managed to get Seto to lie down on the couch and lay his head on Mokuba's lap. Mokuba fingered the two pale strands, and frowned. Then he began to trace his brother's face, noticing the new faint lines on Seto's forehead, and the tiredness around Seto's eyes.

"I missed you, Seto."

"Missed you, too," Seto said drowsily. His face relaxed and Mokuba was gladdened when the weary signs disappeared.

"Love you, Seto."

"Love you, too."

"Where is Nii-sama?"


"Nii-sama is Seto, but Seto doesn't have to be Nii-sama for Mokuba anymore. Because Mokuba is big now. Mokuba can protect, too," Mokuba whispered, bending his head down. "And Mokuba loves Seto. Always. Always." He kissed Seto on the lips.

Seto jerked away.

"What game are you playing, Mokuba?" Seto growled at him as if he were the enemy. But underneath the ice, the waters of fear and bewilderment stirred and Mokuba had learned long ago to see beyond the mere surface of things.

"I'm not joking. You planted a lot while I was gone," Mokuba said, staring at the gardens through the windows. They had grown tremendously in the years Mokuba had been gone. Inside, too, there were vases full of white roses, tons and tons of them, all of them desperately whispering the same thing: "Love me. Love me. I am worthy of your love."


"Open your present."

With shaking fingers, Seto undid the crimson ribbon on the box.

"Do you understand now?"

Seto lifted the natural bloom, thorns and all. The downy petals tickled his nose. "Yes."

Mokuba thought a lot. He thought of himself, as selfish as that was. He thought of Baby Mokuba, of Child Mokuba, of Teenager Mokuba, of "Adult" Mokuba, and then he just thought of Mokuba. He didn't think of Seto, because Seto was there next to him as he had not been for many years. Mokuba smoothed his fingers against Seto's sleeping face, down Seto's neck, over his shoulder and torso. Mokuba shifted next to Seto on the bed, and placed a hand on Seto's bare hip.

"Where's Mokuba? Where's Seto?" Mokuba asked, drifting close to the warm soul besides him and then into the beyond.

The single red rose in the vase by their bedside answered, singing long and sweetly over them like a nightingale through the quiet night, "Together. Together. Together."

And Mokuba remembered no more.