Because I'm a romantic at heart... (Laughs) All right, so really it's because I'm an angst-queen at heart. Anyways this is a songfic... duhn duhn duhn... I know, how completely cliche. But I love this song, and I think that while the meaning of it is a bit different from the way I'm using it here, it's the words that count.
I've kinda moved from Yugioh, I don't much watch it anymore, but I saw a clip of the Ceremonial battle while listening to Shinedown, and WHAM.
So, without further delay: Someday.
--Someday, When I'm older
And they never know my name--
Yuugi watched, heart aching at the sight of his Yami walking back into his time. His life was there, not here in the present.
And nothing, especially the feelings of a worthless sniveling child, would change that. The powers that be had decreed that it was for the good of the world, that it was for the good of everyone that Atemu go back to his rightful place in time.
What about Yuugi?
'I never asked for much, I never wanted more than a friend. But he's so much more to me now... Please... Please don't let him leave! Please!'
His eyes were dry, his friends were watching him, watching to see what he would do. Yuugi could see Anzu trying to get to Atemu.
'She's always been enamored of him. Never of little pathetic me.'
Somewhere in his mind he could hear the echoes of countless talks with his Yami...
"Yuugi, you aren't pathetic, or worthless. You're strong and courageous and you are so loving. You would love the entire world, down to the last ungrateful Tomb Robber if given the chance!"
'But I -did- love, and now that's been taken away. So maybe he was wrong, maybe he was just trying to make me feel better, not tell me what was real.'
--Somehow, If I'm honest
I can never feel ashamed--
'Let's be honest with ourselves. I can beat anything that comes at me in the form of a game, because I spent so much time alone, practicing for it. But I still can't beat the people who hurt me, I still can't hold myself confident and assured... I'm not like him. He's so much... more than I'll ever be.'
"Let's go... There's nothing here for us anymore."
Yuugi hoped they couldn't hear the shame, the sadness in his voice.
He would be strong, he would be tough.
He wouldn't cry for something he never would have had anyways.
Dreams are just that- dreams.
"You okay Yuugi? You seem down?"
Yuugi looked up at Jou, smiling tiredly.
"Sure Jou, I'm just tired, that's all. This has been such a trip! I can't wait for things to settle down again."
He heard a chorus of agreements from the people he had once called friends. Would they still want to be his friends, even when they knew that the Pharaoh was gone? Would they think less of him now that his strength was gone? Now that he was no longer the person they had befriended...?
Yuugi watched them behind half-lidded eyes. He really -was- tired, but he knew he had to make it back to the airport. Then he could sleep on the plane. After that, he could sleep for as long as he wanted at home. Alone. In a cold dark room, in a cold bed.
'I will not cry for something that was never mine to begin with!'
Yuugi shook his head, dashing the moisture gathering in his eyes out onto the cool desert sands. It was dark out and the stars shone magnificently, the moon was full and seemed so impossibly close to the arid desert landscape. There was a chorus of awed sighs, wistful murmurs of appreciation.
He would never have someone to share this with...
--Maybe I was wrong to
Hold you up so high--
The plane smelled of old air, stale food, and bad coffee. Yuugi sighed again as he watched the glittering ocean below him. Nothing could compare to the sight of the ocean's dark surface, glittering in the moonlight. He heard the chair shift next to him as Jou moved into a more comfortable position.
"I can't wait to get home, how about you? I want to eat -real- food, and not have to worry about people running right through me! Ugh! That was such a crazy place!"
Yuugi smiled at Jou's enthusiasm. At least they hadn't left him alone yet. In fact, at least one of them was around him at all times. They seemed to be expecting him to go off the deep end or something.
"I can't wait to sleep. In a real bed, with no worries about whether or not I'll have to save the world again tomorrow. It's very stressful to have to worry like that. I can feel the tension just flowing out of me. It's wonderful!"
He smiled, albeit a little bit forcibly, but he was telling the truth. Mostly. He -was- grateful to not have to save the world from evil and all that jazz, but the tension was still there. Maybe he'd feel better after a long rest at home.
Or maybe he would feel better if he knew that someone was going to be there, someone to talk to and to tell him that he was strong and confident. To tell him that he was worth something... Maybe he was just putting too much into this depression. Maybe he really was just depressed because the thing that he had spent most of his life completing and the person who knew him almost as well as he knew himself were gone and would never be coming back.
He excused himself to the lavatory in the back of the plane, where he hunched over and threw up the memories of laughter and joy. The thoughts of love and cherishment.
After all, if he could rid himself of these things, they wouldn't hurt so much, would they? It wouldn't hurt to lose his life, his love, his heart if he didn't have to -feel- it.
He looked at his face in the mirror after he finished and flushed the toilet. He was so pale, his eyes sunken in a bit from exhaustion. Smudges of deep purple bruised his under eyes, and his eyes themselves seemed to be darker; the bright, beautiful amethyst of old seed to have deepened over the last few days. They were a deep indigo now.
'It's probably a sign, something silly like the loss of so much innocence. I would have guessed that losing the darker half of your soul would mean that you would only get lighter, but maybe it was just a balancing act. He took the rest of my light, leaving only dark memories and wasted thoughts of love. It's oddly fitting.'
He washed his face with the cold water, rinsing out his mouth as he heard the captain telling them to return to their seats, they would be landing in Kyoto shortly.
He took a deep breath, looked at himself in the mirror.
"I can do this."
He returned to his seat, a smile on his face and a darkness in his heart.
--Now I know I've lost you,
To the feelings I kept inside--
The shop was dark as he and Grandpa pulled up to it, echoing the despair Yuugi seemed to be falling into more and more the closer he got to home. The bells jangled tonelessly, a hollow reminder of better days.
'I should be happy. He's with the people he loves, the people he needs and cares about. He is where he belongs. As am I. I belong here and now, I belong in this place, this empty hollow shell...'
Yuugi smiled softly at his grandfather and went upstairs to get ready for bed. He was so tired... bone weary was the phrase. He really was, bone weary that is. He was so tired, his bones ached, his heart felt as though it was cast in lead, and his soul seemed oddly light.
He was missing something. He looked all around his room, trying to place a mental finger on the thing that was missing.
"Yami-" He stopped, coldness enveloping his heart, his mind.
"You aren't here to answer me. You're what's missing. Ha, I thought for a second I was only dreaming this..." He laughed sadly, changing for bed. He climbed into the cold bed, pulling the heavy sheets over his small frame.
He slept, feeling the weight of things left unsaid as he dreamed of what could never be...
/Dream sequence... ooh... shiny.../
It was dark, forks of lightning briefly flashing to illuminate the ever-present dark. But he was safe here, safe and warm and loved.
"Habibi, what bothers you? Tell me love, what is wrong?"
"I dreamt of things... Things that made me sad. I thought I lost you, thought that you had chosen to leave me and... that... that I never told you how much I lo-"
He was silenced with a kiss, hot and sensual, loving and careful.
"Never think that I would leave you so willingly Habibi, I would challenge the Gods themselves if they tore me from you. I lo-"
Yuugi woke, gasping and panting in the bright light of his bedroom. The birds sang outside, the traffic went on. Life went on. He curled into himself, trying to hold onto the memory of love- the memory of his Yami, his Atemu.
No, never his.
He had let him go.
'He walked away, he never even looked back. Why would he? I was nothing more than a means to an end, I guess.'
He didn't believe it, but he tried to. He tried to be angry with the spirit. Tried to hate him.
But he couldn't.
--I don't know if it felt like I wanted you here,
The way that I wanted you last time--
A week. He had survived a week so far. It wasn't that hard. As long as he kept moving, kept busy... As long as he forgot the things he was trying to forget, then life was fine. Things like talking to a friend at all hours. Having someone to comfort you when you feel like crying. Knowing that someone would be there, watching you, guiding you.
He never felt safe anymore.
They still watched him, still tried to get him to admit that he was dying slowly inside. They tried to get him to admit that he was losing himself, that he was trying too hard to forget that he had once loved someone with all of his soul.
And that the someone he loved had died millenia ago.
He was fine.
So he didn't smile as much anymore, no biggie. He was allowed to be sad sometimes.
Maybe he didn't go out as much as he used to, it was alright. He was just trying to catch up with school from missing so much.
Maybe he was working too hard... because if he stopped, he would think about everything, and everyone, that he'd lost.
Life just wasn't fair.
"Hey Yuugi, you want to go to the arcade with us? We're going after school... We'd like ya to..." Jou looked at him with the eyes that said 'we'll force you to come with guilt if you don't agree!'.
"Yeah Jou. I think that'd be nice."
"Great! We'll be meeting up outside of school when the last bell rings, so come find us, okay? Glad to see you're trying to get out now. You'll be fine, you know that, right?"
Jou looked at the young man, seeing perhaps for the first time that he was no longer the person he had known for so long. This wasn't the timid, meek boy he'd tormented long ago. Nor was it the brave, happy boy of only months ago.
This boy seemed too old for his size, too worn for his age.
"Are- are you okay buddy?" Jou was serious this time. They'd been keeping an eye on Yuugi, mainly because they knew how hard he took things sometimes. He would cry over a dead butterfly if he could...
Those big eyes looked up at him - no, through him. And since when were his eyes so... dark? This was most certainly not the same boy as before. The seemed to be searching for something, but they came back to Jou and seemed to remember that he was talking to Yuugi.
"No Jou... I'm really not alright. I miss him. I mean... It was like having an older brother around to talk to and to be with. But now... the house is so empty. But I'm getting better. It's just been hard to remember that he isn't going to pop up out of the bedroom or something. I mean, it's just like before. He's dead, and that's that." Yuugi said it so matter-of-factly that Jou almost missed it.
Almost missed the ending statement.
"Just like before?"
Yuugi seemed startled, almost as if he hadn't expected Jou to catch what he had said.
"Just like before, like when my parents died. When my Grandma died. The way it was before I met you guys. But I still have you, so it's going to be just fine!"
There was a guarded quality to his voice that scared Jou, one that he had never heard his little buddy use before.
"Well, I guess I forgot about that... You'd think I'd remember but... You know me!" He smiled, trying to get the mood back to easy and carefree.
--We're not on the same page,
You don't even know me
Cause you never took the time--
They met outside of the school, waiting for the smallest member of their group. Even Ryou waited with them, quiet and withdrawn as ever.
He had seen it. The absolute pain on Yuugi's face. He didn't know how they could miss it, mistake it for happiness. Then again, these were the idiots who thought he was a nice quiet boy.
He almost laughed.
'I'm quiet, but no one said that the light had to be NICE, now did they?' His other half snickered, telling him that he was right.
'Damn right if I do say so myself... Which I do. But Bakura, what should we do about Yuugi?'
The spirit shrugged. 'Why should I care what you do with him? The Pharaoh's gone, so he's of no difference to me.'
'But have you seen his face? His smile- it's like mine used to be.'
They both sighed, watching the animated play between the group and the depressed boy.
'He's so strong though-- he'll survive.'
--Someday, when it's over,
And you never show your face--
It was summer... How had it become summer so suddenly? And at the same time, why had it taken so long to get here? Time seemed to warp around Yuugi, one minute longer or shorter than the next. He worked now, he was almost out of school, he needed a job to get up enough money to go to University.
So he had talked to Kaiba.
/do do do do... flash back.../
"Um, Seto? Would you be willing to let me work at Kaiba Corp for the summer? I need a job..." He trailed off, staring at the CEO. He knew he could have just gone and signed up at the offices, but he thought it would be faster and easier to ask Kaiba himself.
"What kind of work?" The CEO gave him a strange look, one that Yuugi was too tired to try to understand.
"Anything - look. I need money for University next year. Grandpa won't be around forever, and he's on a dig right now. So I need to work somewhere. You were my first choice, but if you say no, someone somewhere will give me a job. I'll do whatever. Filing, stocking, paperwork - anything."
Seto stared at him, seeming to see him for the man he was for the first time.
"Sure Yuugi. But tell me, when did you change so much? I never thought you would be the one asking me for a job. I thought you'd be asking me to duel you. But you don't duel anymore, do you?"
A cold look entered the once-bright young man's eyes.
"Life changed, and I had to go with it. Just like every time it does. You know this, you've done it too. Thank you for the job. Where should I report?"
Kaiba shivered internally at the ice in Yuugi's voice.
"Come to my office, Monday morning at nine."
As the long days started to turn shorter and chillier, Yuugi realized that he was entering his final year of school. If he did well here, he could get the full-time position in the Accounting section of KC. He'd been training there for the entire summer, so he was a shoe-in for Angela's old spot.
He hated it. He hated the boredom, the long hours of tedious mind-numbing work. But it was good money, and it was better than nothing.
--I hope you remember
How I tried to make you a place--
School started, same as every year before it. The feeling of hopelessness because of the end of summer and the beginning of a seemingly endless school year ahead. But to Yuugi, it felt as though the time spent here would end too quickly. He would be gone, none of these people would care.
Yuugi sat in class, listening half-heartedly to the greetings from the teachers, thinking about what it was about this year that seemed so... different from the years before. Sure, it was his last year here before he was to go to University and become a real person in the world.
But wasn't he already? Didn't he beat the most important people, tear down guilty and perverted schemers and dreamers. He saved the world... And no one noticed. He stopped dueling after the ceremonial battle. It would never hold the same quality it once had. He would never be beaten, because he had beaten the King of Games, the greatest player in all of time.
See where that got him.
--And so now I move on--
It got him turned into a jaded, faded glory. Someone who was once the epitome of selfless, the paragon of innocence, who was now a world-weary person, who faced the stark reality of the world.
Life was a journey towards death.
No matter how he tried, what he did, or how he felt, in the end none of it would matter, because no one would care. Least of all Yuugi himself.
He rose as the bell tolled, signaling the end of class. He was running on fumes, going from one day to the next with only the thought of surviving to get to the next day.
He was dying, inside and out. It was only a matter of time now. He had tried. He had tried to move on, to live life and do well. Yuugi knew deep down that he couldn't keep denying things being the way they were.
Acceptance was the path to healing, right?
--To keep my peace of mind--
Then this was it, this was his acceptance. He knew it. He knew that something was missing, and that he was killing himself to replace that hole inside of himself that was so empty and aching. He ate and he talked and he worked and yet he never once lived since that day.
Was Yami happy now? Was he alright with the afterlife? Did he live to be an old gray-haired man, or did he walk into the afterlife, into his eternal peace?
It was for the good of the world that Yuugi give up his only love, his only life.
Was it truly love? How could he ever know what love was, if he had been so closely attached to someone, so intimately knowledgeable about someone...
Yes. With all his heart, and what was left of his soul... Yes. It was love.
Yami was not the other half of the same soul. Yami was his own entity, he had been a separate person, with a life of his own to live. He had never been attached to Yuugi, save for protecting him.
Yuugi knew it.
He accepted it.
He could feel what was left of himself slowly fall to pieces inside of his chest.
An ache, a fierce, fiery ache stole his breath away.
If that was love, then this must be heartbreak.
It felt so natural to hurt so much. It felt much like the time he got that letter, the one that had informed him of his parent's demise. It felt much like the time his Grandmother had slowly deteriorated in front of them, and he had watched his Grandfather suffer the pain of a broken heart.
Yet they all had one thing on him- they had lived to see their love. They had -lived- their love, and had died knowing that love.
He would never...
The walk home had never seemed shorter, and he was suddenly in front of his house, opening the door.
The bells tinkled, a soft sound that was slowly swallowed in the dull roar of his heartache. He nodded to his Grandpa, walking upstairs to his room, slowly shedding his uniform and changing into a pair of pajama pants. He lay on his bed, tired beyond all reason.
He would not go to work today.
He would not go to work ever again.
--In some way, I've failed you,
But I just ran out of time--
Atemu stared out at the ever-present sun. He had awoken in this place, as if awakening from a dream. A dream that he would die to relive again. He would give up his place in the afterlife to hold his little love once more, to see his carefree smile.
How it must have hurt Yuugi when he left. Not because the boy loved him, but simply because he was so attached to Atemu that he would simply wilt without him.
He wasn't being conceited, it was something he knew from dwelling in the boy's mind, his soul for so long. Yuugi was a soul apart, he was so unlike the rest of the world. He loved fiercely, and even if it was only a brotherly love, Atemu knew that Yuugi would never recover from a blow like the one dealt to him that day.
There was no concept of time here, the days lasted forever, the nights twice as long. It could have been a day since he left, or it could have been centuries.
He had not seen his love in the afterlife, and he didn't know if Yuugi would ever reach him here. Were there different levels, or other afterlives?
Other places for souls to go? This was the dream of his people, the desert lived on in his concept of afterlife, would Yuugi have gone to his own kind of life?
Atemu wished he knew the answers, because it was hurting him to know that he was the cause of so much pain for his little love. How he wished he had gotten the chance to tell Yuugi of his love for him before the debacle of the ceremonial battle.
He wished he could have one last look at him...
"As you wish..."
It was the voice of the gods... all of the world whispering and screaming at the same time. Atemu looked all around him, trying to find his love.
"This is your glimpse of him. You must choose..." The voice faded, giving him what he wanted, a look at his Yuugi.
Oh how he wished he had been wrong...
--I don't know if it felt like
I wanted you here--
Yuugi awoke in a strange place. It was the desert, with the bright sun shining down on him. Yet there was no oppressive heat, no pain to his eyes as he looked heavenward.
'I must be dreaming again.'
He sat up, surveying his surroundings. It was a place unlike the ones in his dreams, the haunting glimpses of the fight for Yami's memories, to defeat his enemies and to free him to go to the afterlife.
He felt something to his right, something so vaguely familiar it made him ache with excitement and fear. This was only a dream, and it was going to hurt him to wake up from it.
"Little one, why are you here? You should be in your own time, living your life to the full."
"How can I when my life left me where I could not follow?"
--The way that I wanted you last time--
Yuugi looked slowly to his right, wishing his mind was not so cruel as to taunt him with images of what he could not have. He saw his Yami kneeling slowly to look at him. Yuugi saw he was dressed simply, not as he had been when they were inside of his memories. He wore the simple linen kilt, tied with a purple and blue sash. He wore no jewelry, no makeup adorned his face. His black hair was braided in the manner of his people, his face still the same as always, those ruby eyes piercing his soul.
"Why do I taunt myself with visions of things I cannot have... I am so tired, I want to sleep..."
"No little one, we have much to discuss."
Yuugi was startled, his dreams usually ended with silence, he had almost forgotten the musical lilt of Yami's voice.
"This isn't a normal dream, is it darkness?"
The little beads braided into Atemu's hair clicked together as he laughed, shaking his head no.
"No it is not. The gods granted me my wish, I wished to see you again."
"Why would you think of me, this is your peace, you should be with those you loved and lived with."
Yuugi hugged his legs to his chest, just noticing that his chest was bare, he was dressed as he was when he fell asleep.
"But I am with the one I love. I am with the one I lived with. The one I am sorry I had to leave alone."
Yuugi's eyes seemed to ignore his wishes and continued to fill with tears. He tried to will them away, but he couldn't keep the sob from rising in his throat.
"Why? Why did you leave then? I loved you with all of my heart, all of my soul. You left me, and I had to find a way to live without a piece of myself. I accepted your decision. I accepted that it was for the good of the world. I accepted that I would have to suffer eternal loneliness in order to save the damned fucking world yet again. Why did they make me do that?"
Atemu knelt by Yuugi, holding him tightly in his arms as Yuugi sobbed into his chest.
"I wish that I could have looked at you, wished that I could have stayed and spared you that pain. But we can't change the past, we can, however, change how we feel about it. I miss you, even in this place, where I am supposed to be eternally happy. I am not. I am not happy because I left you to suffer, and you have, just as I knew you would. Not a day has gone by that I did not think about how much I loved you, and how much you must have been hurt by me. I hope that you can forgive me though. I only did what I felt was right for the-"
"If you say 'the good of the world' I'll smack you."
"For the people I was to protect. Had I stayed, you would have been in danger, as would your friends. My people would have been in danger too. I did what was necessary."
The older teen turned Yuugi to face him, holding his love's face to look into Yuugi's eyes once again. He saw them so dark, not the clear beautiful amethyst of old.
"Beautiful. No matter how you change, no matter what you become, I will always think you beautiful..."
Yuugi blushed, clear down his chest too.
"You are too, you know. Magnificent, really." Yuugi searched his Yami's eyes, seeing the subtle change of his ruby colored eyes. They were lighter, a pale red with bands the color of blood. They were beautiful, and he said so.
--I'm not sure that you hear me--
"I only wanted to be able to touch you, to see you again. Now I know that with that one wish, I have spoiled myself. It will never be enough to simply see you one last time... "
--I'm not sure that you look at me the same--
"I never wanted to see you again. I knew that if I did, I would just break inside. But I was already broken, and seeing you makes me feel whole again." Yuugi murmured. He slowly closed the gap between their lips, softly touching his to Yami's.
They both sighed in appreciation.
They broke apart, not daring to take the kiss further, knowing that no matter how they wanted to, how desperately they wanted each other, that they would only end up hurting if they did.
Atemu touched his forehead to Yuugi's, sighing as he closed his eyes, trying to will away the tears in his eyes. His breath hitched as Yuugi's hand softly carresed his cheek, trying to memorize the feel, the contours of his face. Tears ran down Yuugi's face unheeded, it didn't matter that Yami could see them. It was not a sign of weakness, it showed him how much Yuugi cared.
"As you wish..."
They felt themselves being ripped apart, eyes widened in the realization that their moments of peace were over. Yuugi cried out, reaching to his love as his heart broke yet again. Their separation was short-lived however. They found themselves at the foot of a throne, looking at the magnificent god, resplendent in his glory. Atemu fell to his knees, bowing deeply, as was his custom. Yuugi stood defiantly. This god had taken everything from him, he would not show him reverence.
"You have wished, my child, to leave us. As much as it saddens me that you do not find happiness here, I know that with this powerful child, you will find the happiness you seek. Yuugi, you have a difficult decision to make. If you accept Atemu into your arms again, you will not be able to stay in the realms of the living for your full time. Your life will be halved, your life force taken to create a body to house Atemu's spirit. If you choose to leave your body now, you can forever live in eternity by his side. Do you choose to live on in the mortal realms, to live out your years at his side, to die and be separated when you die? He is a god in his own right, he will return here when his spirit leaves the body again. You are not a god, no matter that you share part of the same soul, you are mortal and as such you will go to the afterlife befitting mortals."
Yuugi stared at the god, his mind sifting through the choices. To live a mortal lifetime, a short one, but a lifetime none the less, with his love, his friends and his family, or to die now and stay with his Yami for eternity...
"Forgive me, but how, if I am but a mortal now, can I stay with Atemu if I choose to stay here now? If I will die and go to the mortal's afterlife, how will I stay here with him now?"
The god smiled, androgynous face smiling with mirth.
"You will be made into a god, little Yuugi. You are a piece of his soul, as he is a piece of yours. It is not enough to weight the scales in your favor when you die, yet it could be enough now. I could name you a god, as you have the Pharaoh-god's soul in you. They were as gods once when they were living, so I can make you a pharaoh-god too."
Yuugi looked puzzled.
"Why not just tip the scales in my favor when I die? It seems logical to me."
The god laughed.
"Logic and belief have little to do with each other."
Yuugi smiled, kneeling beside his still-prostrate love.
"Yami, Atemu, would you live out a life with me in the mortal realm, or would you spend eternity with me here?"
Atemu's head rose up, looking at the god, contemplating. He smiled a little, a challenge in his eyes.
"I am your son, as such I ask only one more favor. Yuugi be allowed to visit his family and friends one last time, to tell them goodbye. They deserve as much."
The god contemplated this, looking to Yuugi for his decision.
"I would like to say goodbye... If it could be done. They would -and will still- mourn me, but I wish I could tell them why I had to leave. I want to spend eternity with Atemu, I want to have his love forever and beyond."
The god smiled again, knowing that he had made the right choice in granting his son's wish.
"So shall it be."
--I will always be attached to you,
But I'm never gonna feel the same--
Yuugi's face lit up with his complete joy. He knew that his friends and his Grandpa would miss him, but he would have died sooner rather than later if left in his own time and body. He felt no guilt at wanting to be selfish just this once, to be forever happy.
The god nodded to Yuugi, motioning to a door.
"Atemu cannot join you in the mortal realms, but he will be here, waiting for you. You have two days, ending at midnight the second day. Say your goodbyes, and you will become a god-on-earth, as is Atemu, and you will join us here in the afterlife. Good luck, and fare you well."
Yuugi bowed to the god, thanking him silently for this chance. He turned to Yami, smiling and pulling him to standing. He kissed his love soundly, not caring that the god still sat, watching them.
"I'll be back love, I promise. Come hell or high water, I'll be back. I love you."
Yami didn't speak, he simply kissed Yuugi again, mouthing against Yuugi's lips the three words he wished to hear.
"I love you."
Yuugi stepped back and turned to the doorway the god had motioned to. He stepped though, feeling himself awaken on his bed. It was now morning, and he had two days to get his affairs in order. First things first... He got up and crept to the kitchen, intending to make breakfast for his grandfather.
"Yuugi my boy, what's gotten into you? You haven't been this way since-"
Grandpa stopped and looked sheepishly up at his grandson. Yuugi had set breakfast on the table, and smiled despite his slip up, gesturing for the old man to sit.
"I have some good news, and some... well I guess it's sort-of bad news."
They sat and grandpa sipped his tea as he waited for Yuugi to gather himself and speak.
"Grandpa, you know I love you, right? You know that I would never intentionally hurt you, would never break a promise unless it was unavoidable."
Grandpa grew tense, his face worried.
"What is it Yuugi? I don't understand, but yes. I know you love me, and whatever promise that you have to break, I'm sure that it is necessary."
Yuugi smiled, hoping that his grandfather would still be able to say that in a few minutes.
"Grandpa, I got to see someone last night that I've been sorely missing for months now. I was... I can't say it any other way, because it's the cold hard truth- I was dying, inside and out. I was giving up because I was incomplete. The part of me I lost... It was tearing me apart, and ever since that day, I 've died a bit more inside. I remember the look on your face when Grandma died, the heartbreak you felt. I was feeling that, only I lived without knowing if they loved me back. Grandpa, I saw Atemu- Yami - again last night. Not that I haven't dreamed about him since he left, but this was different. This was a true vision, and yet I was really there. He was there, and he did, he hated to have left, and he loves me too. I know it sounds crazy, and I'm sure that you don't understand, that you think that I'm being rash about it. Yes, I was so close to him for that short while when he lived inside of me, but it's more than that. We shared a consciousness, were part of a whole, and together, we were an entire soul. We are two different people, he had a life and body of his own, and I have mine. But we have a piece of each other's souls inside of us. I think it came from when we separated at the end of the battle- We exchanged a piece of ourselves. Anyways, I know that it seems strange, and that you may not agree or even like it. I'd understand if you don't want to have anything to do with me from now on."
Yuugi took a breath, and started up again, only to be interrupted by his grandfather.
"Yuugi, no matter who you love, I will always love you and will back you up no matter what. I think we all knew, on some level, that you two were different people, and that you loved each other, even if none of us realized it at the time. We could all see you as you deteriorated over the days and weeks and months. I'm a bit hesitant to believe that you saw him, really saw him, I think that it may have been stress and depression making you think these things. But go on, tell me the rest. I know there's more, I can see it in your eyes."
Yuugi laughed a little, a look of relief coming over his features.
"You have no idea how much you just made this both easier and harder. I thank you so much for accepting this. I knew you would, but I have learned not to hope too hard. To tell you what is going to happen... It's something that I don't know if you'll understand, or even believe. I visited the realm of the dead, of the gods. Yami was a pharaoh- a god-on-earth when he was alive. He is now in the god's realm in his afterlife. The god brought me there to give me a choice. Yami, his son, had wished to see me again, and wished to be with me. The god mentioned how he was sad that Yami couldn't really be happy with just them, and he gave me a choice. The first option was to bring Yami to the Mortal realm, to create a body out of my life-force. It would shorten my life, but Yami and I would live out the rest of our lives together in the mortal realm. We would be separated in death though. I am not a god, even with a part of a god's soul inside of me. It wouldn't be enough to tip the scales in my favor, he said. So, my other choice was to leave the mortal realms and be made a god by becoming another pharaoh-god. We would be together in eternity. Forever, compared to a few years."
Yuugi's grandfather looked stricken, his face sad and his hands clenched. He sighed.
"I know which you chose, and I can understand why. If I had the choice, I'd do the same. I miss Iyazuma, I would have done it in a heartbeat. I only wonder why you came back to tell me this."
Yuugi looked shocked, staring at his grandfather.
"You think that I would leave you without an explanation! Yami begged a favor of the god and he gave me two days to get everything in order. I couldn't leave without letting you know why. I made you a promise, one I can't keep. I promised you, when grandma died, that I would always be there for you. I'm sorry I have to break that promise... But for once in my life, I'm going to be selfish and choose to be happy. I won't lie to you, I wouldn't have survived much longer anyways."
Yuugi's grandfather nodded, already having seen it in Yuugi's lack of spark and interest in living. He looked at his only grandson with tear filled eyes, pleading with an acceptance. He didn't want to accept that his last relative was leaving him, yet he understood completely.
"I know what this means to you - and to me. I just want you to be happy. Happy is something you haven't been since he left. I'll help you set everything in order."
Yuugi got up and hugged his grandfather tightly, tears of joy and sadness commingling on his face as they embraced.
"Just think- maybe I'll be able to visit you somehow, in this life or in the afterlife. Now, I hate to just leave you after all this, but I need to get ready so that I can break the new to the rest of the gang. I love you grandpa, and I'll never forget you."
Sugoroku just sighed as he watched his only grandchild leave his arms and take off to the stairs, a smile that had been missing for too long back on his face. 'The things we do for the ones we love...'
--I don't know if it felt like
I wanted you here--
Yuugi's smiling face was a shock to the five people in the classroom, watching him practically -skipping- onto said classroom.
"Whoah Yuug, what's happened?" Jou asked, mirroring the confusion of all of the gang.
"Something wonderful. Oh god, how cheesey did THAT sound? But really, it was something wonderful, and I hope that you guys will see it my way too." He smiled again, the lines of stress and tension gone from his face, a relaxed air about him, with a bit of underlying nervousness.
"Why wouldn't we? If you're so happy, why wouldn't we be happy too?" Asked Anzu, a confused frown marring her pretty features.
Yuugi looked sheepish, as though he didn't want to admit that he was probably over reacing.
"Well, it's kind of... drastic... news. Grandpa took it well, but I'm still worried..." He trailed off, quieting as the rest of the class started filtering in. Seto just stared at the changed Yuugi, something in his (admittedly) usually cold heart. He knew on some level that Yuugi wasn't happy because he was moving to Peru or something. But what could be so drastic as to upset the dream team?
--The way that I wanted you last time--
They all gathered around the quiet young man, waiting to hear this "drastic news" he bore them. Some (like Jou) figeted, not liking the vibes he was getting from his little buddy. Others (like Ryou and Seto) were wondering what the hell compeled them to hear the news.
"Umn... As you guys know I haven't been the same since the battle, and that I took it hard. Much harder than I tried to let on. You probably noticed anyways, I won't lie to myself and say I was handling it well. But last night..." He trailed off, trying to find the best words. "Last night I had a dream... It was more than a dream, but I know that some parties, " here he looked scathingly at Seto, who just glared back. "wouldn't believe me if I tried to explain it to you. The gist of it is... There's a way to bring back the happiness that I used to know, and there's a way to live... as cheesey as it sounds, happily ever after. Forever."
He waited for the news to sink in a bit before plowing straight on.
"I'm not known for my overt acts of selfishness, but this time... This time I'm going to do what I want... Fuck the world."
All of the assembled gasped a bit at the language, and at the content of the statement. Yuugi... Selfish? Fuck the world? WHo was this and how did they impersonate Yuugi so well?
"Ummm... Yuugi, I don't think that you're explanation is going too well, so let's try again from the top. You had a dream, and now you're going to do..." Ryou guided Yuugi into the proper explanational format.
"I'm going to leave. Well, technically, I'm going to die, but that sounds so melodramatic."
Everyone (Seto included) dropped a jaw and stared.
"What? I'm not allowed to be happy. Fine. Jeeze." He turned away, smiling at them when they couldn't see.
"Wait! Wait wait wait wait wait... Explain this whole 'I'm going to die' bit again. I don't think I caught it correctly." Anzu was so funny sometimes...
--We're not on the same page--
He turned around, smiling.
"I know, I just had to do it. It was just... perfect." He laughed, sounding more and more like the joyful Yuugi of the past.
"Okay... So I had a vision, don't roll your eyes Kaiba! It was, I swear. Anyways, in this vision I saw, well, Atemu. He wasn't the Atemu that haunted my nightmares for so long, he was different, and we got around to saying things..."
"If this ends with you professing your undying love, I'm leaving."
"Shut up Bakura. And yes, actually. But that's not the end. I have two choices, given to me from Ra, or was it... Nevermind. Anyways, I was given the choice of-"
Bakura cut in once again, "You had the choice of living or dying. You chose the dying."
Yuugi scowled at the white-haired demon.
"You ruin everything, you know that? So, I had the choice - shut it you- of living out a human lifetime with Yami, or leaving for the afterlife to be with him forever."
"Why didn't you take the first offer?"
"Because Jou, I would have lived only a few years, my life would be cut in half, to sustain Yami's life force. We would then die, and be seperated for eternity." He looked sadly at his friends. "All jokes aside, I know it seems selfish and that I don't care about what you think... But I would rather spend forever with love, then live a life without. I was dying anyways, it was only a matter of time. I got a chance to say goodbye, and I hope you won't begrudge me that. I'll be leaving tomorrow at midnight, so whatever you want to say, say it before then. I'll let you think about it, I have to go help Grandpa with the shop. Bye all."
He turned and left, not waiting for their questions, afraid of what they would think, would choose. At the same time he felt lighter than air, because now they knew, and no matter what, that was what he came back to tell them.
--You don't even know me--
"So... who here thinks this is an elaborate scheme to make us feel better about his suicide?" Jou looked around at the people with their hands in the air. Anzu, Honda, himself. He looked at the two left.
"Seto, I can understand that you don't like him, but do you feel bad about the fact that he's trying to make us feel better about the fact that he's going to kill himself?"
Seto stared at Jou, a dawning look of comprehension flitting across his eyes for a second.
"No Jou, I really think that he's happy right now, and that this is probably the best thing for him. Even if it is just trying to let us feel better, as you put it. I think though, that maybe he did see this... I've watched him decline for months now. I'm sort of... Happy for him." The others looked at him like he'd grown a second head.
"What? Idiots." He got up and walked away, murmmuring about idiots and magic.
"Ryou, what do you think then?"
They all stared at the pale boy, watching him as he gazed unseeing at them. He shook his head and came back to the now, a sad smile on his face.
"Well I think that it's real enough. I've seen enough things to know. And he thinks that Yuugi deserves some rest. He wishes to add that he doesn't care one bit for the brat, but that he wishes he could see the look on the God's face when dealing with the two lovebirds for all eternity." Ryou blushed. "I will not say that!"
They all looked at him, and he just hid beneath his hair. "Sorry..."
"Well, I guess that maybe they're right, maybe he did see something, and maybe he's got an eternity of love planned. But I still kinda think he's just nutters after all of the stress he's been holding on to. But I support his decision. Anyone else?"
They all looked a bit shocked and unhappy still, but overall, they figured it couldn't be worse than a slow death, like the one awaiting him as it was.
--Cause you never took the time--
Yuuig and his grandfather spent the night going over a will, and planning for the funeral. It felt weird to be planning these things, but Yuugi still did it with a light heart, because he knew that it would be fine in the end. THey would understand, they would see.
"Grandpa, let's get some rest, you're falling asleep sitting up. I'll still be here tomorrow."
His grandfather looked at him, tears in his eyes.
"I know Yuugi, but I just... I want to hold on to every second I can, because tomorrow, you won't be able to say that. What will I do without you? You've been the light in my life for so long now, and I know my race is nearly run, but... I don't want to spend the last few years alone..."
"You won't be alone grandpa. You'll have Jou and everyone to help you, and you'll be able to count on them to be just like your own grandkids!" It was said with a light air, but his Grandpa could see the fear and doubt in Yuugi's eyes.
"My boy, I'll get along. I've only a little while before I see my family again. And then, I'll barge in on you two and have a long talk with you about nothing and everything."
They embraced, letting the tears run, before they got up and turned out the lights.
Only a little longer...
--No you never took the time--
The day flew by in a blur of activity and anticipation. The gang had come by, to wait and to talk. To say goodbye.
The time had come now, it was half an hour until Yuugi would leave them, and they started to get antsy. Was it all just a ruse, or would there be a big to-do like when Atemu left for the underworld? Ryou walked up to Yuugi, pulling him aside to talk.
"Yuugi, I know that things have been rough, and that I've been less of a friend than I should have. but I want you to know - no we want you to know, that you deserve this. He's kicking me for saying this, but he hopes that I would do the same. And I would. So no matter where you go, remember little ole me, and put in a good word, okay?" They both shared a smile and went back to the group.
It was two minutes now, and Yuugi gave them all a hug, and hugged his grandpa again and again.
"I;m sorry grandpa, but I have to go..."
"I know Yuugi. I know."
Then, it was time. There was a noise like a door creaking open, and suddenly a doorway appeared. It was all lights and theatrics, with the chorus of singing.
"Alright, who'd you bribe?"
A laugh came from the other side of the door, and they saw the outline of a familiar figure, and the steady glow beside him that seemed to be a figure made entirely of light.
"My family wished to welcome their newext member with style. Don't you like it?" They laughed again, and Yuugi ran up to Yami and hugged him, tears of joy running down his face.
"Of course I do, thank you so much!" A kiss, and a chorus of "awws". From both sides of the door.
"Get a room!" Came the shout from Bakura, who had taken over Ryou to say it.
"Don't talk that way to your elders!" Came a reply from behind the three in the doorway. A fourth insulted his heritage.
"Yeesh, great family. Insulting me, every last one of them!" He retreated and Ryou looked sheepish before bowing to the deities.
"Yuugi, it is time. Say farewell and come here into your new heritage, and your new family."
Yuugi nodded, and turned to his friends, giving them all a last smile and said to his Grandpa, "Don't worry, I love you, and they'll take care of you!"
He then turned and they watched as he was transformed into a pharoah-god. His clothes morphed into the clothes like Atemu wore, a headress and scepter appeared, as well as the crown and the jewelry. He smiled at his new family, feeling the world drop away as he stepped into the afterlife. He was jolted as the doors closed, and he felt a momentary loss before he was swept up into strong arms and taken away to a bright building in the distance.
"Now, as great as you look, O mighty Pharoh, let's see how fast we can divest you of the accouterments of your office."
"You've been reading the dictionary again, haven't you?"
Laughter followed the two as they set out on their 'honeymoon'. It would last several lifetimes.
--Someday, when I'm older...--
Sooo... Yeah. Review?