(The following fic is the first in a sort of 'mini arc' of 5 fics in total, according to these prompts: 29. Birth 28. Children 24. Family 27. Parents 30. Death, as according to the rules of the LiveJournalFanFic100 Community (write 100 fanfics around your characters and/or fandom of choice with help of a list of prompts). This mini-arc contains mainly sappy and fluffy scenes, as well as a little angst and drama. It also contains shounen ai and a minor and major character death- please refer to the author's notes of each fic for appropriate summary and warnings. Thank you and happy reading! Feedback is greatly appreciated : ))A Sorta Fairytale
Title: A Sorta Fairytale, pt. 1 – "On my Way"
Characters: Yami no Yuugi (Atemu) & Mutou Yuugi
Prompt: # 29 Birth
Word Count: 14.302
Summary: After almost three years of waiting, the Mutou family finally welcomes a baby girl in their midst.
Author's Notes: End of series "fix-it". Characters are around 20 years of age. Shounen ai. Made up name for Yuugi's mother: "Yusuke". Minor character death!
Key : ------------ scene change
"See ya tomorrow!"
"See you tomorrow!" Mutou Yuugi waved enthusiastically back to his best friend, Jounouchi Katsuya, as the taller, rather casually dressed boy put up his hand to wave his goodbye. Yuugi adjusted the strap of his rather heavy backpack- sometimes he thought he'd never get used to the weight, even though it was his second year of university already. With a smile still on his face and a rather stuffed feeling - he never could get enough of Fujikawa's sushi platter and always ended up eating way too much -, he headed for home.
It had become a tradition to have lunch once a week at Fujikawa's, as Yuugi and Jounouchi didn't see each other every day anymore, unlike in their high school days when they shared classes and spend a large part of the day together and with their other friends. Sometimes Yuugi longed for those days even though his memories of school weren't really his favorites; he knew he was longing for reliving those intense moments of everyone still together, the gang of friends, bond unbreakable.
He knew that their bond was still there, but it was daunting to realize how quick and how far their paths had parted after their graduation from Domino High. Jounouchi hadn't even considered going to college or university- he immediately searched for and found a job as a mechanic. He loved working with his hands, and restoring old American cars quickly became his specialty, developing a surprising amount of patience and eye for detail in his line of work. As soon as he was able, he moved out of the apartment he had to share with his father, establishing a life of his own, while his reputation in the field of car restoration took a flight, causing people to search him out to handle the most classic of cars.
Jounouchi's patience with old cars was as surprising as Honda's announcement to go to university. Everyone had assumed that, seeing his previous school results, he'd be looking for a job as well- preferably something with bikes, his greatest passion. Yuugi snickered a little; who would've guessed that Honda was just as passionately about his dream of opening his own store and importing bikes from all over the world, even considering setting up and sponsoring his own racing team? As far as Yuugi knew, Honda did quite well in the classes he was taking, and his friend was serious about his plans.
Yuugi heaved a small sigh, before he moved to the left, turning around the corner. It was already two years since Anzu left for New York to study dance, chasing her own dreams. He was very happy that she already managed to get that far in such a short amount of time- it almost seemed like yesterday when she was pacing nervously back and forth, awaiting the results of her audition. He missed her -they'd been inseparable for so long-, and was extremely grateful for e-mail and text messages to keep in touch personally. She maintained a web log for everyone else to see and interact about the daily grind of her life in the United States, adoring each and every comment from her friends.
Shizuka, Jounouchi's younger sister, was still in high school as she was quite a few years younger, and she'd made big plans about becoming a beautician or a veterinarian, depending on her mood. Otogi Ryuuji was also going to university, taking MBA classes and somehow still able to combine it with work at his own game store, a continuous flock of fan girls around him and designing new games, mostly based on his earlier invention of Dungeon Dice Monsters.
The Kame Game Shop was already in sight, its bright yellow and green colors unmistakable. Yuugi had hardly realized the unique layout of the building before, especially compared to the bland apartment buildings and thirteen-in-a-dozen houses surrounding it. Its structure on the inside was even more unique; Yuugi didn't know any other house with the kitchen and living room on the first floor, a bathroom on the ground floor and the typical construction of the bedrooms and the -much later - added attic, where his bedroom was. He loved the house, and loved receiving his friends there... if only everyone wasn't so extremely busy with the new turn their lives had taken.
Even people Yuugi didn't know well but counted as his friends were busy; people like Kaiba, who dropped completely out of school to concentrate on his business, and Kujaku Mai, who disappeared and popped up in Domino City whenever she felt like it. Bakura Ryou had, after their last endeavor in Egypt, reverted into the rather silent student he once used to be, and retreated into the background as ever before. No matter how much Yuugi tried, he had to finally accept that Bakura would always be a little distant, reserved in his own way- and he often asked himself if he hadn't done enough to help Bakura when he was still in possession of the Sennen Ring. He still regarded him as a friend, and greeted him every time when he saw him at the university; Yuugi always forgot what Bakura was studying, but it was something difficult, something with socio-psychology.
"I'm hooome! Mou hitori no boku!" Yuugi had gone through the front door this time; usually he simply went through the Game Shop to greet his grandfather first. The elderly man had been having health issues lately, so it was often Yuugi's other Self who ran the small store- and today wasn't an exception, as his mother's voice rang out to him: "Atemu-san is in the store, Yuugi-kun!" She was standing at the top of the stairs with a laundry basket in her arms. "How was your day at school, dear?"
"Fine, kaa-san," Yuugi answered, looking up the stairs. He knew his mother was rather proud of him that he finally had taken up his studies; she'd been afraid he would waste his time with playing and gaming. Mutou Yusuke was very protective of her son, and had set out a path for him he didn't exactly agree with all the time, though he'd never forget her relieved and enthusiastic reaction when he told her he was going to study. She was convinced that only a good education would enable one to accomplish their goals in life, and she was disappointed at first when he took a year off after high school. Now that he was studying, with rather good grades to boot -Atemu shared her opinion of a good education, and all but forced him to do his homework-, she was content, even though it wasn't exactly the study she had in mind for him. It had taken Yuugi quite some cajoling before convincing his mother that he didn't want to do any business education. No way was he going to turn into his father.
"How's jii-chan doing?" Yuugi asked, going up the stairs and taking the basket from his mother's arms. No matter how unique the layout of the house combined with the store was, it sometimes was a little illogical- the connections for the washer and dryer machines were on the ground floor, and therefore made for some annoying trips up and down the stairs while carrying heavy laundry baskets.
"He's doing all right, Yuugi-kun," she said, smiling at her son. "He ate very well today and even wanted to go back to the store!"
"Jii-chan always overestimates himself," Yuugi said, though not scolding. His grandfather was over seventy-seven now, and his health wasn't as it used to be. He still worked at the Game Shop, but only on the quiet hours and busied himself with rather non-exerting chores. "He should really be resting instead of working..."
"Well, why don't you try to tell him," his mother answered dryly, following him down the stairs. Yuugi merely chuckled in response; both knowing that the effort wasn't worth the trouble- Mutou Suguroku could be a very, very stubborn man. She took the basket back as soon as she was downstairs, chiding Yuugi a little. "Go see Atemu-san, dear. I'm merely keeping you."
"Thanks, kaa-san," he grinned at her before turning away, all but running through the hallway and pushing open the door that separated the house from the store.
Silently, he snuck into the store- it was small and rectangular, packed with merchandise, and the counter was almost as large as the whole width of the store- and Atemu was standing behind it, leafing through some papers as there were no customers at the moment. Yuugi's heart always seemed to swell up with pride and joy at even the smallest thought about his other- the former Pharaoh, the former spirit of the Sennen Puzzle, the former 'other Yuugi'. He was here now, in flesh and blood, he could be touched, he could be kissed… and he could be surprised, as he gave an almost indignant yelp as Yuugi ambushed him all ninja-like and wrapped his arms around his waist, whispering a "Boo!" into his ear.
"Yes, that's me," Yuugi said happily, waiting for Atemu to turn around and wrap his arms around him in return. He didn't have to wait too long; he could barely purse his lips for a kiss before he felt Atemu's lips on his, gently kissing him. "You surprised me…"
"You have bad hearing. I wasn't that silent."
"I was concentrating on those packing lists…"
"It's okay, mou hitori no boku. Just kiss me."
Had it been really three years since Atemu made the decision to forsake his right to go to the Afterlife, three years after the Ceremonial Battle to set the Pharaoh's spirit free? It felt like forever, and Yuugi wanted nothing but it to last forever. His other Self, who inhibited the Sennen Puzzle to wait for the one to assemble it, to go on another quest to find his name and save the world from darkness and destruction, was with him- standing right here in front of him, after he begged the Gods for him to be turned into a mortal. They had listened and the Ceremonial Gate had closed again with a rumble; much to everyone's surprise- and relief. A lot of tears of happiness and joy followed- no one was going to part, no one was going to lose a friend and no one was sure which one cried the loudest: Atemu or Yuugi.
It didn't surprise anyone in the least; of course, that Atemu and Yuugi, already inseparable, lived together from the day after the Ceremonial Duel was cleared. It didn't surprise anyone either that Atemu's first purchase from his allowance was a ring for Yuugi. What did surprise everyone was the giant fight they got into only a month after, even resulting into Yuugi leaving, to start traveling around the world for almost a year.
"Mmmm…." Yuugi moved his hand up a little, to trace the large golden earring Atemu was wearing. He enjoyed kissing and being kissed, and though many people would find it strange to kiss their look-alike, Yuugi simply couldn't get enough. Not many would find the other half of their soul, a soul mate beyond the borders of imagination, who had shared literally body and mind. This was someone who he would never give up on, someone who would never give up on him, and this was where they both belonged- right next to each other's side. Yuugi put his hand on Atemu's cheek, cupping his face, staring at the crimson-red eyes with the dark long lashes, and felt at home- really at home.
Even if they were only twenty, they both had gone through a lot. Not many could claim to be a Pharaoh from Ancient Egypt who sacrificed himself to save the world from darkness, only to be brought back into the world three millennia later to repeat the whole process- minus the sacrifice at the end. Not many could claim to be the one acting like a vessel for said Pharaoh, and lived through the many adventures and quests to find the Pharaoh's name, dueling around the whole world. That was exactly the difficulty Yuugi encountered- though he had learned much from his adventures, from Atemu, he was still doubting himself and his abilities. He'd won the Ceremonial Battle, thus installing him as the King of Games, but even defeating the God Cards, defeating his most trusted monster, defeating the man he loved- it was too much, and he hated that he'd fallen down on his knees and cried like a little girl.
Yuugi had admired his Other for his strength, failing to realize the strength in himself, and wanted to find out on his own if he could make it in this world. He wanted to set out for more dueling tournaments and see how far he could get, not running after someone else, not dropping to his knees again. In his turn, Atemu had latched onto Yuugi, almost suffocating him, not knowing how to deal with his new-found life. He'd been a Pharaoh, and now he was expected to help in a Game Shop, to participate in the household, and he couldn't switch with Yuugi anymore if there was a situation not to his liking. On the outside, he could deal perfectly well with everything, his natural confidence guiding him, but on the inside, he was afraid of Yuugi leaving him, of not having a perfect grip on every situation, and he didn't know how to express himself but to hang onto Yuugi.
Their love for each other was unmistakable- it was suffocating, all-consuming and ever-present, but despite all the love, they both failed to understand each other, which finally escalated into a massive fight, prompting Yuugi to leave. Traveling around had always been one of Yuugi's biggest wishes, and he started to compete in large tournaments, wanting to prove to himself that he had the strength, that he could be on his own, trying to discover that inner strength that Atemu told him about, but that he couldn't seem to find. It took Yuugi only one day to realize he couldn't live without Atemu, and one week to finally cave in and ask him to accompany on his travels. By then, they both had gone sick from being apart from each other, and after their reunion they solemnly vowed to never, ever leave each other again like that.
"How was your day at university, aibou?" Atemu finally said, leaning into Yuugi's touch and mimicking him, cupping his face with his hand, fingers gently stroking his skin.
"Bwah, mostly boring," Yuugi answered. "Ishimu-sensei kept us for three hours, while his lecture had only been scheduled for two, and the man just can't keep anything interesting. It was one, long, boring monologue. I felt like I was listening to a record playing at 78 rpm…"
"You poor thing," Atemu laughed softly, pressing another kiss to his cheek. "Time for tea and biscuits?"
"Sounds wonderful! Oh, how was your day? Busy?"
"Not many customers, unfortunately… there was news from Ooshimuru, though."
Yuugi took in a deep gulp of breath. "What... what was the news?"
"They want to see me… ah, you of course, for some kind of meeting. I thought we had had all the intake interviews and counseling possible, but apparently…" Atemu's voice trailed off, and Yuugi heaved a sigh, shaking his head. When he looked up again, his smile was soft and a little weary.
"Mou hitori no boku…I wish I…"
"I know," he said, silencing him with a kiss on his lips, briefly tasting him. "I am happy to go see them, aibou. Now, how about that tea?"
Yuugi shook his head again, but knew better than to go against it. Ooshimuru was the name of the adoption agency they had approached when their wish for a family became stronger over time. It was a very well recommended and renowned adoption agency, but the procedures were long and time consuming, especially for a single parent like Yuugi- all the paperwork was done in his name, as Atemu wasn't a registered citizen. This was one of the occasions their similar appearance worked to their advantage- Atemu had been the one to do the endless process of interviews, meetings and psychological tests, all to prove he'd be fit as a parent. It was very beneficial to his cause that he could prove there was a mother and a grandfather -thus, more family for the to-be-adopted child, and that he had a rather tight circle of friends at his disposal to take care of the child should the need arise.
"Tea and biscuits," Yuugi repeated as he slowly, reluctantly, let go of Atemu. He was rewarded with a ruffle of his hair and protested, much to the other's amusement. "Mou hitori no boku! Stop that!"
A little sheepishly, Yuugi stared at the large sign in front of the university cafeteria, trying to decide what he was going to get to eat. Usually he took lunch with him from home, but today he'd forgotten to take it with him. That would get him at least half an hour worth of frowning at home… he heaved a small sigh. Before he could finally decide upon a dish, he heard his lunch partner approach- Otogi Ryuuji himself was silent, but his flock of fan girls wasn't. He had to suppress a laugh; it was always the same on Tuesday, when they had lunch together and discuss games and game development in general. The girls would sit close by, staring at the object of their affection, meanwhile giggling and sometimes pointing. The 'tradition' of these fan girls following him around seamlessly transferred from high school to university, and Otogi sure didn't seem to be bothered by it, even though it was often object of teasing comments.
"Good afternoon, Otogi-kun," Yuugi said pleasantly, turning around to greet him.
"Yuugi-kun! It's not often that I see you study the cafeteria's lunch menu. Did you already decide what to get?"
"No, not yet. Why don't you order something for the both of us?" He asked, knowing that Otogi was far more acquainted with the dishes and the way they were prepared here.
"Sure! I'll get us something to eat, while you find us a nice place to sit!"
The cafeteria was rather large and there were some tables available at the window; Yuugi immediately claimed one, putting his heavy bag on the chair, stretching a little. Tuesdays were the best days of the school week- not only did he finish early; he also had interesting classes and lunch with one of his friends. He didn't mind the girls who were hording the tables next to him, it merely amused him. A few had looked at him as well, a long time ago- but he only had to put up his hand to show the ring on his finger to make them loose interest. Yuugi never paid much attention to the rumors- that everyone had seen him with a ring, but never with a girlfriend at his side, and some pranksters even gossiped that he himself had bought the ring, just to pretend- he really couldn't care less about them.
It didn't take long for Otogi to show up at their table, balancing two trays. Yuugi immediately rose to take one of the trays, placing it in front of him. "That looks delicious!"
"Wait until you tasted it- unlike many other universities, this cafeteria is one of the best!"
"You should know," Yuugi said a little teasingly, taking up his chopsticks. For one reason, Otogi had always made a far more cosmopolitan impression than everyone else Yuugi knew- a man of the world, even though Yuugi had traveled farther and more than him. It was just something in his attitude that made Otogi simply Otogi, and a good friend to boot.
"How are things going at home?"
"Fine, as usual," Yuugi answered. "Mou hitori no boku made me lunch today, but I forgot it."
"Atemu-san doesn't seem the kind of housewife to me," Otogi said, laughing.
"Oh, don't get any wrong ideas," Yuugi answered, flashing an impish grin. "Mou hitori no boku is judge, jury, nurse, business manager and state trooper at the same time. He keeps track of everything and takes care of everything. Thanks to him, the store remains open for customers, jii-chan takes his medication, kaa-san never forgets anything anymore and I do my homework."
"Your grandfather is sick, Yuugi-kun?" Otogi asked, using his chopsticks to help himself to some noodles.
"N… no, not really. Well... it's his age," Yuugi answered him, saddening a little. "He's very often tired, and lately he wasn't feeling very well. The doctor said he should take it easy because of his heart."
Otogi nodded. "What's his age again?"
"Seventy-seven, he'll be seventy-eight in a few days," Yuugi said, about to take another bite, when suddenly a ring tone was heard- not too loud, but unmistakably close.
"Hey, my cell phone…" Yuugi put his chopsticks down, fumbling for his phone in his backpack. Otogi looked bemused at him, not even taking the effort of checking if it was his own cell phone- both already knew who would be calling. Atemu always either called or send a text message during lunch time and Otogi still had to live through the day that the former Pharaoh would forget about it. He paid attention to his own lunch and opened one of his text books, giving Yuugi some privacy to hold his conversation. The fan girls at the surrounding tables had finally learned that Otogi wanted to be left alone when he was having lunch with Yuugi; after all, he saw the fan girls almost 24/7, and Yuugi only a few times a week. His lips curled into a smile when catching a glimpse of Yuugi's blush, even though the other was keeping his voice down- only to be completely caught off guard when Yuugi exclaimed a loud "Really? For real? REALLY?"
Even the fan girls looked quizzical at Yuugi's outburst, and a few other students in the cafeteria turned around, trying to locate the source of the noise. Yuugi was stammering at the phone, speech barely comprehensible, and Otogi lifted his eyebrows while he reached for his soda. Finally, Yuugi was finished, bearing such a brilliant smile that Otogi needed sunglasses when looking at him, lest he be blinded.
"Well, that must've been really good news," he commented dryly, taking a sip of his drink.
"We're pregnant!" Yuugi announced, barely ducking in time to avoid Otogi's spit-take of soda, spewing all over the table.
"Dear gods, Yuugi!" Otogi quickly wiped his mouth, then scrambled for napkins- his troupe of fan girls came in handy, as fast as they were in offering him heavily perfumed handkerchiefs, napkins and more table linen. "You can't be serious! What…"
It dawned to him while he was dabbing at his face before taking care of the mess on the table. "That's really great! So you're finally approved for the adoption procedure?"
"We were approved a while ago, but still," Yuugi said, lending a helping hand and cleaning off the rest of the liquid, using a paper napkin. "Mou hitori no boku constantly had to go back to the office for interviews, meetings and the like."
"Well, it's very logical to do a very careful and thorough screening," Otogi said as he finished cleaning, throwing everything away in the nearby trashcan. "Kids need a stable and warm family, not someone who thinks it'd be fun to have a kid around and unable to provide them with everything they need."
"Yes, you're right, but the process was killing us," Yuugi answered, sobering up. "All the effort, the trouble... and we still didn't know if we were eligible to be able to get a child through adoption. When we were finally approved, we thought we made the selection, that we were finished… but then we had to wait and wait."
"All your waiting certainly has paid itself off," Otogi smiled. "Congratulations, Yuugi-kun!"
"We already know it's a girl," Yuugi beamed, lunch completely forgotten. He almost trembled from the excitement- they had been waiting for almost three years for this news. The matter of children had only briefly been discussed between them- both Atemu and Yuugi wanted children, and for the former Pharaoh adoption was the most logical solution, seeing as they were both male. Yuugi on the other hand sometimes wished that he'd been able to carry a child, a 'real' child from both of them- but he realized and knew that it wasn't an option.
"Way to go Yuugi-kun," Otogi congratulated him again. He shuddered at the thought of kids, and frankly thought that Yuugi with his barely 20 years was too young for the responsibility. Otogi knew however, that it was one of his best friend's greatest wishes, and who was he to object? He was sure that the child would be welcomed in a loving, caring family, with more warmth and stability than he'd ever experienced himself.
"Mou hitori no boku wants me to think of a name," Yuugi smiled dreamily. "It's going to be a most beautiful name!"
"Without a doubt," Otogi answered airily, "but ehm... you don't forget about our plans, do you?"
"Oh no, of course not!" Yuugi frantically shook his head, picking up his chopsticks for the umpteenth time and putting them down again. Otogi didn't take all those business classes for nothing- he had lots of experience with his own store, The Black Crown, but he was aiming for expansion and at least designing other games besides Dungeon Dice Monsters. Yuugi immediately had offered to help him with game designs, formats and even programming. "In fact, I had some time left after I was finished with my assignments. Here…"
Yuugi rummaged again in his backpack, pulling out a wad of papers and a notebook. "Some basic code for the Dungeon Dice Monsters handheld game… broken down to the core structure, of course."
Otogi took the notebook from him and leafed through it, needing only a few seconds to reach the conclusion that it was excellent work.
"Yuugi-kun, you're brilliant," Otogi sighed, turning over another page. "If it weren't for Industrial Illusions and Kaiba Corp. going to fight all over you, I would've loved to have you working for me."
"What do you mean, 'fight all over me'?" Yuugi asked, dumbfounded.
Otogi grinned. "You're a genius when it comes to game design and development. I was merely brainstorming about the idea to turn DDM into a handheld game and you have the basics already, breaking down the game to its core without losing its originality. You have a very keen eye for it, and the ideas you come up with are all winners, that's for sure. If either Kaiba or Pegasus put their marketing department and their R & D funding on it, all the games you're going to design are bound to become bestsellers."
"Nah," was Yuugi's response, even though he was thrilled with the compliments. "I'm sure we can keep working together, Otogi-kun!" He lifted up his arm to take a look at his watch. There was only one lecture after lunch, and it wasn't that important… he could always ask one of his fellow students for the notes. It wasn't Yuugi's nature to skip class- but he was so excited about the news that he could barely sit still.
Otogi snorted, noticing his friend's anxiety. "Why don't you go home Yuugi-kun, and celebrate the good news? I'm sure your class will thank you for it- you're moving around like a bumblebee!"
Yuugi laughed shortly in return, starting to pack his things, lunch once again forgotten. "Thank you, Otogi-kun!"
His friend only smiled at him. "Keep us all up to date, hmm?"
"I will! You can count on it!"
It seemed to take forever, but Yuugi arrived at the Game Store no later than it usually took him to get there by public transport. He all but flung the door open, yelling out in his enthusiasm.
Yuugi was about to run upstairs when his mother came out of the storage room, holding a bucket and a mop in her hand. Her smile was as wide as Yuugi's, and he immediately went to her for a hearty embrace.
"I'm not so sure if I'm that happy," she said with a wink. "Now I'll be called grandmother, and I'm too young for that!"
"Kaa-san," Yuugi protested. She pinched his cheek, amused.
"I figure you want some special time now that you've learned that you're pregnant," the woman continued, a little more serious. "Atemu-san already went upstairs, and I think I'll prepare a special dinner for tonight…"
"Mmm, Egyptian for dinner, my favorite!" Yuugi exclaimed loudly, and he turned around to race up the stairs.
"That wasn't what I meant!" his mother yelled after him, but doubted if he heard her- he was already at the top of the stairs, looking for Atemu.
"Mou hitori no boku?"
"I am over here, aibou!"
Yuugi went to the right, into the small guest room. He immediately lowered his voice, as this room was adjacent to his grandfather's room- he would probably be resting, and Yuugi didn't want to wake him. He tiptoed over to Atemu, who put a notebook onto the spare bed and opened his arms for an embrace.
They were silent for the first five minutes, sighing in relief and happiness. Nuzzling each other, hands gripping at the fabric of their clothes, Yuugi finally brushed his lips past Atemu's.
"Finally we're pregnant," he said, longing audible in his voice. He smiled up at Atemu, who moved his hand between him to pat Yuugi on the stomach.
"You still have that wonderful flat tummy, aibou."
"Did you just make a funny, mou hitori no boku?"
Yuugi couldn't help but laugh out loud, smothering the noise by quickly kissing Atemu. When he had himself under control again, he pulled back a little, eyes shining with love and happiness.
"Did you tell everyone already yet?"
"Yes, I called our friends personally and I have text messaged and e-mailed those I could not reach," Atemu said, tilting his head a little to kiss Yuugi on the cheek. "I am so happy, aibou…"
"So am I," Yuugi immediately answered, turning his cheek more towards Atemu, who continued to kiss him, close to his ear, lower to his jawbone. His hands dropped from Atemu's shoulders, trailing over his back. "We're finally going to be parents…"
"I thought it was just another routine interview, but they told me about this little girl being…" he scowled, "available. She goes by the name of Aki, but her name has not been officially recorded. We can give her any name we want, and the agency will make the paperwork in order."
"I hate the term 'available'," Yuugi growled, "a child isn't merchandise…"
"I know, aibou, but if you really look at it, she…"
"Shhh," Yuugi simply said, not wanting to think about it. All that mattered was that they were going to have a baby girl, a child of their own, and she was going to be a part of the Mutou family… he smiled, softly mewling when Atemu continued to kiss him, right below his jawbone.
"How long is it going to take?"
"Four months, tops," he answered. "The agency will soon send us some pictures of her, and probably call us to meet her before we get to take her finally home. I believe they said she is around eight months… she has been passed around in her ah, family, but no one could be bothered to take care of her properly. Her mother was way too young…"
"That's awful," Yuugi said, clenching his fists, gripping Atemu's shirt. "The poor child!"
"She will be very much welcomed and loved here," Atemu reminded him, pressing a kiss on top of his head. "Our own family."
"Our own family," Yuugi repeated, feeling very happy. "Oh..! We have to adjust this room, then…"
He turned his head a little; noticing the notebook Atemu dropped earlier on the spare bed. "You were already busy with redecorating plans?"
"Ah, it is not that difficult… we can put the spare bed in the storage room, that one is large enough. If we have any guests staying for the night, we can always offer them our bed or the one downstairs in the storage room. I believe the couch there can be unfolded as well and turned into a bed..."
Yuugi nuzzled him, fingers uncurling and splayed against the other's back, turning his head again and pursing his lips. He didn't have to wait long for another kiss.
"Those are all minor things we can take care of easily…"
"Did you think of a name yet?" Atemu asked, keeping his voice down as he broke up the kiss. Staring up at him, Yuugi softly smiled.
"I had a name running through my mind as I was on my way here, but I don't know if it's an appropriate one…"
"We still have some time left to come up with a name, but I think any choice by you will be a good choice, aibou."
Yuugi mumbled something, burying his head against Atemu's chest.
"What was that, aibou?"
"I was thinking of... Tzuziko," Yuugi said, voice slightly louder. "It's not a very common name, and I don't know if…"
"Tzuziko," Atemu repeated, and repeated it again. "A very distinct name, aibou. I like it. Tzuziko Aumr."
"Aumr. It means 'life' in Arabic…"
"Mou hitori no boku, not many people in Japan have two names."
"Tzuziko will be how we call her, but seeing as we are both from rich, traditional cultures…"
"I understand," Yuugi said, hugging Atemu close. "Mutou Tzuziko Aumr it is."
He returned the hug, his hands on Yuugi's back, pressing himself even closer and silencing him with another kiss.
"Mou hitori no boku…"
"Mou hitori… mmmmm…"
"Shhh, aibou... you have to be silent, otherwise grandfather will wake up…"
Yuugi burst out in nervous laughter, plucking at Atemu's shirt. "We better get to our own bedroom."
"I can not think of any better way to celebrate our impending fatherhood," Atemu said and scooped Yuugi up with one movement, eliciting a shriek from him, and marched towards the second staircase leading to the attic.
Yuugi rolled over on his side, letting out a very content sound, rumbling in his throat. Atemu hadn't commented on him skipping class or forgetting his lunchbox; almost everything seemed futile in the light of the good news. We're going to be parents, Yuugi thought, looking over his shoulder. Atemu was dozing, his breathing too light to be completely asleep. The tangled mess of sheets and other bed linen only covered his right leg, and he had propped his hands under the pillow. Yuugi smiled. Parents. It wouldn't be easy, it wouldn't be all fun and games- but it would be their responsibility, their family, their child. It was like a wish come true… and life suddenly just seemed perfect. A wonderful boyfriend and lover, a loving family, a roof over his head, and now their very own daughter.
Yuugi leaned into Atemu and kissed him on the cheek, receiving a low mutter in return. His hair was a mess and he felt a little sweaty- time for a shower. He jumped out of the bed, scrambling for a pair of sweatpants, socks and an oversized t-shirt; towels would be plentiful in the bathroom. Leaving their bedroom, Yuugi made his way down the stairs, sticking his nose in the air and sniffing; he could smell delicious, rich and spicy food- his mother truly was preparing a very special dinner. He rubbed his hands- this was more than a perfect day, it was mega perfect! As he passed his grandfather's room, he suddenly heard a noise, and halted.
He'd heard it right. Carefully, Yuugi pushed the door open.
"Yuugi," the elderly man repeated, making a movement with his hand, indicating for Yuugi to come in. He pouted a little, not wanting his grandfather to see him this disheveled- but he wasn't about to object.
"Jii-chan, have you heard the news already?"
"Of course I have," he said, patting on the covers of his bed. Mutou Suguroku hadn't changed much over the years appearance-wise; he had taken his health problems in stride, but wasn't all too happy about being bed-ridden. Next to his bed were large boxes of second-hand Duel Monsters cards; he'd been sorting through them for future sales, and to keep him busy.
"It's great news, Yuugi. Soon, you'll be having your very own child," he said, an amused look on his face. "My very own great-grandchild! I'm so very happy for both of you."
"Thank you, jii-chan," Yuugi said while he sat down on the thick covers. "We waited for three years, but it's all worth it, that's for sure!"
"Certainly," he nodded. "Yuugi, now it's the time to talk."
"Yes. I had the same talk with Atemu, and heaven forbid him being a little less stubborn than he usually is."
"What are you talking about, jii-chan?" Yuugi asked a little worried.
The elderly man heaved a sigh. "Yuugi… I'm an old man. I'm going to be seventy-eight in a few days, and my health is declining slowly but steadily."
"Let me finish, Yuugi, please." He looked up, determined. "This is about your future, the future you're creating for yourself. You're about to form a family of your own with Atemu as your significant other and soon a child will join you as your daughter. I'm sure she's not going to be your only child." He lifted up his hand when he saw that Yuugi wanted to speak again.
"I want to see you happy,both of you. You deserve it, Yuugi- you and Atemu, after all you've been through. I want you to live your life to the fullest, doing what you want to do, doing what you like best, what you see fit. Nothing is more stressing in life when you burden yourself with obligations that aren't obligations at all…"
"I don't understand it, jii-chan," Yuugi interjected when the elderly man took a deep breath.
"I'm talking about the Game Shop, Yuugi. You don't have to keep the store up and running because of some silly thought or self-imposed obligation that it's something that I wanted to see, something that I wanted to be it that way."
"Jii-chan, of course we don't abandon the Game Shop!"
"That's what I meant, Yuugi," Suguroku said. "It's all right. You don't have to keep the store as some kind of memento to me. I'm not physically around to enjoy it anyway, and do you really think it'll make me happy when you're doing something you don't really like, just out of some sort of obligation that I would've liked it?"
"Atemu isn't the kind of person to run a game store for the rest of his life, Yuugi. He was, and still is a Pharaoh, in every way. Being a store clerk isn't what he's cut out to do, even though you have to hold him at gunpoint and still he'll deny it, claiming that he doesn't mind the work and that he's happy to do it for you or for me. I don't want his or your days to be boring and slaving if there's something else he or you want to do, something you both would enjoy more."
"I… I don't know what to say," Yuugi whispered, feeling tears welling up in his eyes. His grandfather was discussing things his death, something he didn't really want to think about. Yuugi felt ashamed for never having given it a thought before, assuming that everything would always remain the same. "Jii-chan…"
"It's alright, Yuugi. These are the kind of things no one likes to discuss. Believe me, I wish I could postpone this kind of discussion to years later… but we have to keep reality in check. I know your interests doesn't lie with the shop or with doing business in general, and I don't want Atemu to look back at his life years later and hate me or himself for doing work that he never really enjoyed. I don't owe a lot of money, Yuugi, or I would've given it already to you to build your own house, follow your dreams…"
"Jii-chan, don't be silly! I don't want any money…"
The elderly man coughed a little before he continued, interrupting Yuugi again. "I haven't invented in technology to keep the store up-to-date, Yuugi. I think we're the only one in Domino City who doesn't accept plastic money. I haven't ordered the newest game consoles and systems either, to slowly but steadily reduce the store's stock."
"That wasn't necessary…"
"Yes, it was. It is. I may be an old man, but I'm not a fool, neither am I blind. I don't want you to be weighed down by the responsibilities and obligations of a store, especially if it's something you never really fancied yourself. Your future is for you to decide, Yuugi. You and Atemu and your children, together."
Yuugi smiled, fingers curling around the bed cover and pulling them slightly up. "Thank you, jii-chan. I promise I talk to mou hitori no boku about this, alright? You better rest up now for dinner."
"I'm not a baby either," Suguroku protested faintly, and wriggled a little when lying down. Yuugi smiled when tucking in his grandfather, the man who taught him how to duel, how to envision a strategy, the man who had done more for him than his own father who was always away for business… and he had to swallow, his lips a little quivering. If his grandfather saw it, he didn't comment on it, and after Yuugi had wished him a good rest the man closed his eyes, fatigue already claiming him. He didn't cry, not even when he was in the shower- but his heart felt heavy, and his mind was troubled.