°Stares° Wow... this is the last chapter... Yes, you can all now start crying, I know it´s very depressing. Well, I hope you all have fun with the epilogue! R&R!
--: Epilogue :--
Home sweet home
Yami landed softly in an abandoned alley, making sure to check if no one could see him, though it wasn't likely since most were already inside and dusk had set some time ago already. Kumiko had fallen asleep during the flight, and was snuggled into his chest safely, an aura of contentment around her.
"She really looks cute like that." Yami glanced aside to see Yuugi landing there, an adoring smile on his face as he looked at Kumiko, though Yami could feel weariness in the other's aura. His heart clenched at the feeling, but he knew it was only natural.
The other three angels landed behind him, their auras practically beaming with caution and weariness. Yami actually flinched as he turned around and saw the suspecting faces of whom he had considered friends. He sighed, looking at the ground.
"Look, I know none of you trust me right now, but I'm still the same person that you met yesterday; I still very much have a soul."
"Then how come you have your demonic powers and even your wings again huh?" Malik countered, "The only way for that to be possible is if you accepted Aknunkanon's deal, which means you lost your soul! Try and explain that demon-boy."
Yami clenched his fists and flinched again at the harsh words. Images of Aknunkanon fighting with all four angels, Yuugi falling to the ground, Aknunkanon threatening to kill all of them, starting with Kumiko and Yuugi flashed before his eyes. "He wanted to kill you all… starting with Yuugi and Kumiko…" his voice was strained as the old anger he'd experienced rushed over him again.
All angels glanced at each other hesitantly, before looking back at Yami apprehensively, "So…?" It wasn't meant to be uncaring, but more curious and questioning. Yami looked up, his eyes betraying his anger though all could see it wasn't aimed at them.
"I don't know what happened okay? I think I got so angry that my power, even though it was locked inside me, responded and broke the binds that held them." Yami shook his head and breathed deeply to get his temper in check again, before casting a quick spell to make his wings disappear until he'd need them again. All knowledge had by now been processed and he knew everything that had happened in his first life – some memories more wanted than others.
Yuugi looked at him, their eyes meeting and Yami allowed the other to look into his soul, to see that he hadn't changed one bit from the person who he had been before all this. A few moments passed by as the two just looked at each other, before Yuugi's face broke into a bright smile and he tackle-hugged Yami, careful not to hurt Kumiko.
Yami grinned and wrapped one arms around the smaller, holding Kumiko with the other, "So you believe me?"
Yuugi nodded, "Yeah, there's not much you can keep from me, Yami. And I don't see anything different in your soul except for the added powers."
Malik, Ryou, and Joey glanced at each other for a moment, before smiling and giving Yami and apologetic look, "Sorry, Yami… I just had to know for sure. I don't want to find Yuugi dead the next time we see him."
Yami chuckled, "It is okay. I would've been more surprised if you hadn't been suspicious of me. Now let's go to my place for some sleep; I'm tired."
All nodded and smiled, before casting spells to hide their own wings and walking to the large mansion-like house Yami lived in. Yami smirked at the though of seeing his father again this time. Sure, he wouldn't kill the man – even though he deserved it and Yami had the power – but the man wouldn't be able to touch him anymore without consequences.
They reached the house fairly fast, as Yami had landed not too far away from it. The sight that met their eyes though, was not the sight they had expected.
Police cars and ambulances surrounded the building, as police officers walked in and out. Tape lines were there to make sure no one came any closer, as people tried to get a peek of what was going on.
Yami walked closer, wanting to address an officer and ask what had happened for them to be all around the house, but the officer had already noticed him and beat him to the punch.
"Are you Atemu Yami-san?" Yami nodded a confused look still on his face. The officer sighed, before speaking again. "I'm sorry sir, but someone found your father in the yard not too long ago… he's dead.
Yami froze, his mouth opening slightly as he stared in disbelief, first at the cop, then at the house. "What? How? Why?" He couldn't make a coherent sentence for his life right now.
The officer sighed again before smiling gently at him, "I know this is hard, but we'll need to ask you some questions. Did your father have any enemies that might go to these extremes to get rid of him?"
"I don't know, he didn't talk about his work at all… I guess he must've had some, since he was running a business and all, but I have no idea who or why." Yami glanced at the officer again, "Can I please see him?"
The man looked at him first, then at Kumiko still in his arms, and last at the group still standing behind Yami, all looking at each other questioningly. "Only you, they stay outside and the girl-"
"Will stay with Yuugi." Yami finished before anything else could be said. Even if Kumiko was asleep, he didn't want her to wake up while he was standing near Yoru. He had no idea how the man looked, but he didn't want to take any chances here. He'd tried to keep the girl from having any traumas in her past, and he wasn't about to give her one now.
The officer nodded and Yami walked back to the group of four, before handing a sleeping Kumiko to Yuugi. The girl's face contorted for a moment as she was switched, before she snuggled into Yuugi's chest instead of her brother's. "I'll be right back, I just want to see if this might be demon related or not."
Yuugi and the other three nodded, and Yami walked back, following the officer he'd been talking to.
"So is anything out of the ordinary with his death? Since you're investigating it so thoroughly and all." Yami tried to sound timid and a bit distraught, but he feared a bit of urgency might've slipped into his voice; He didn't want to sound suspicious, as he knew he was going to be a suspect.
The officer didn't seem to notice though, "Well, there are two strange things about it. One, there are burn marks in his right hand, but we don't know what the symbol means, or if it even means anything at all. The second is that there is no apparent reason for his death. His body seems to be in perfect condition; not a scratch on him except for the strange symbol on his hand, and all his organs were working just fine. We have no idea what happened to him.
Yami's eyes narrowed. Only magic could be the cause of something like this, and the symbol only proved it more. If he could just take a look at the symbol, he might just discover what kind of spell had been cast.
"Don't take too long, we want to get him to the morgue as soon as possible." Yami nodded as they reached the spot where Yoru was laying in a body bag, the zipper still undone so you could see the body.
Yami took a deep breath before looking at the man. His eyes were closed, but a pained and terrified expression was on his face. It was strange to see an expression like that on the face of a man that had beaten him up so many times while laughing and enjoying every second of it.
Yami's eyes slowly went over the entire body, his new senses picking up on a large amount of magic still radiating off the man. This had been a powerful spell, and if Yami wasn't mistaken, this was Aknunkanon's magic signature. So Aknunkanon had killed Yoru? This just made no sense.
Yami eyes finally stopped at Yoru's right hand, and the teen's eyes widened at the symbol that was indeed burned into the skin. He recognized the symbol at once as Aknunkanon's signature. When a demon made a deal with someone, both had to seal the deal by shaking upon it. By doing so, magic would imprint the other's signature into the other's skin to make sure the deal would be kept. If either of the two did not do so, that same magic would burst from the signature, killing that person instantly and leaving the mark visible to show that that person had not kept his promise.
So Yoru had made a deal with Aknunkanon? Judging by the amount of magic and how deep the mark on Yoru's hand was, quite some time ago too. But why? And what had the deal been?
"I'm sorry, but you'll have to leave again now." Yami glanced aside stiffly to see the officer motioning him to go back to his friends, "Do you have anyplace to stay? A friend's perhaps?"
Yami just nodded, knowing none of his friends had a house but not wanting to let it sound suspicious. After all, there were four teenagers standing there, it would be rather strange if none of them had a house.
"Good, we will need you to stay available for questioning. How can we reach you?"
Yami gave his cell phone number before walking back to his friends shakily, taking Kumiko back from Yuugi as he reached them. All left the scene quickly, not wanting to stay close to the house any longer.
"So what happened, Yami? Was it demonic work?" Joey looked at him curiously.
Yami sighed and stopped, looking at them seriously. "It was, but not in the way you think. His body was surrounded by magic, and the magic of Aknunkanon at that. Aknunkanon didn't kill Yoru though, not directly anyway. Aknunkanon's mark was on Yoru's hand, so Yoru-"
"Had not kept to a deal he had made with Aknunkanon!" Malik exclaimed, shock in his voice and expression. It wasn't everyday you heard something like this, especially not with humans. Demons tended to stay away from them, thinking them too weak to be useful.
"So you don't know what kind of deal he might've made with Aknunkanon?" At the shaking of heads, Yami sighed and glared at the ground, "Damn it."
It was silent for a while as they all just stood there until a new voice, one that Yami didn't recognize, suddenly sounded, "Maybe I can help you with that."
All looked up with surprised eyes to see a brunette with cerulean-blue eyes staring at them with an emotionless expression, his aura beaming with angelic powers though his wings were hidden by a spell.
"Seto!" Joey grinned as he nearly tackled the other to the ground, making the brunette scowl though you could see playfulness in his eyes as he hit the blonde on the head.
"How many times do I have to say not to do that?"
"I dunno, keep tryin' and we'll find out ne?" Joey grinned as he hugged the teen. Yami stared for a second before glancing to Yuugi.
Yuugi was holding back giggles at the sight of the two arguing teens in front of him. He glanced up as he felt Yami's gaze on him and smiled, "Seto's Joey's boyfriend, and practically the right hand of God himself. He can be quite a snob and has an ego to boot, but he's okay when you get to know him."
Seto snorted as he finally released himself from Joey's grip, and glared as Malik burst into laughter. He'd never been able to get along with the platinum-blonde that well.
"As I was saying," Seto started again as Malik finally calmed down, though his glare remained, "I know why Yoru is dead at the moment."
Yami looked at the other seriously, all amusement forgotten for now.
"Your dearest father made a deal with Aknunkanon the day your mother was killed. The deal was that Aknunkanon would keep Yoru out of prison, and would give him wealth, luxury and fortune. In return, Yoru simply had to make sure you would accept Aknunkanon's deal on your eighteenth birthday. This is why Yoru has been beating you all these years; he wanted to make you distrustful of the world and hunger for revenge. Needless to say, you did not agree, and so Yoru had not kept his end of the deal, resulting into what you saw back there." Seto had said it like it was the most normal thing in the world, and that irked Yami slightly. The teen pushed it aside for now though, as he had more important things to think about.
"So he simply sold my soul for his own gain." Yami stared at the ground, a glare on his face. "Why didn't your God stop this? Didn't he know what could happen if I had accepted Aknunkanon's deal?"
"No, he did not. And seeing as this life was your punishment for killing so many, God found it only fitting that Yoru was so harsh to you. However, you have shown that you are no longer the demon that you were in your last life. You did not accept Aknunkanon's deal, you never gave into temptation even with the life you have lived, and you regained your demonic powers without losing your soul. God is impressed."
Yami snorted, "And what does that mean for me? That he'll finally stop being a jerk and let me live a normal life?" He understood that he had deserved a punishment, and a harsh life would indeed seem fitting with all the suffering he had caused, maybe a bit too little in fact. Sadly enough Kumiko had also been drawn into this life, as had his mother. They had been punished for something he had done, and that was not fair.
Seto chuckled at Yami's response, "One thing that'll never change; your attitude. Let's hope Yuugi can do something about that, if he stays."
Yuugi looked up at Seto in confusion. "What do you mean, 'if' I stay'? Even if I wanted to go back I couldn't; I broke the rules and gave up being an angel… isn't this only temporary?"
Seto shook his head, "No, you have a choice again, Yuugi. Your angel powers have been restored to full, so it is once again your choice whether you want to stay mortal, or come back with us."
Yuugi stared wide-eyed at the brunette. He could become an angel again? He could really come back to Heaven if he chose to?
On the other hand, he had Yami here now. He had come to Earth not only to help the other, but also because he had fallen in love with his look-alike. Those feelings had only gotten stronger as he had spent more time with Yami, and now they were a couple…
But grandpa… his friends… God, this was giving him a headache. Why did he have to make this choice again?! The first time had been hard enough; he didn't want to choose again!
Yami watched silently, sensing mixed feelings going through Yuugi's aura. A want to stay, countered by a need to go back to his friends and family. The love he felt for each of his friends, countered by the love he felt for Yami. Even by just feeling it as an outsider Yami flinched at the headache forming, and he wasn't even the person experiencing all of this. He could only guess what Yuugi was really going through right now.
And he could only hope that the smaller would choose him. He would understand if Yuugi went back – his family and friends were obviously very important to him and there was no doubt that he had missed each and every one of them – but he still hoped Yuugi would stay with him. He wasn't sure if he could let the one person that had brought so much good into his life go.
Yuugi swallowed and looked at each of the people present. Joey, Malik, Ryou, Seto, and last Yami. None had said nothing since Seto had given him his choise once againYuugi knew they wanted him to make his own choice, one that he would be happy with. He could see different emotions in all of their eyes though. Hope, desperation, love, and Yuugi wasn't sure if he could let any of them down right now. He had made his choice though, and he would once again keep to the choice had made.
He slowly walked over to the group of angels that had gathered on one sidesensing Yami's aura become sadder immediately. Yuugi smiled sadly at the feeling.
"Yuug?" Yuugi sighed deeply, before taking his three friends in a hug. The hug was returned gladly, but confusion shone in all eyes and auras. Yuugi pulled away and gave his friends a sad smile this time, "I'm sorry guys, but I'm staying with Yami."
Yami's aura lit up in happiness, though sympathy shone in it as well. The three angels looked at the ground, their aura's showing sadness, though understanding as well.
"Yeah, we kinda expected it." Joey sighed and looked up, tears in his eyes, "But at least you're not runnin' off like ya did last time, we actually get ta say goodbye now."
Yuugi blushed. When he had left Heaven the first time he hadn't told any of his friends where he was going or why, simply leaving a note with an apology for not saying farewell. He knew his friends would've tried to stop him, and he figured that this way it would've been less painful.
"Yeah, he's too good a guy to let go of." Malik winked in Yami direction, before giving Yuugi a crushing hug. He let go before Yuugi could even start to protest though, and walked over to Yami. "You hurt him and you deal with me, understood?" Yami could hear the playfulness, as well as the seriousness in Malik's voice. Malik did mean what he said, but the platinum-blonde wasn't expecting Yami to do anything of the sort.
Yami smirked, "Well as long as that doesn't include anything that happens in bed, no problem." Malik held back his laughter as Yuugi blushed furiously at the statement.
He didn't get to say anything else, as Malik grinned and cut him off, "Oh hush, Yuugi. We all heard you moaning his name last night, so save your breath."
Yuugi's blush deepened, but he kept quiet. Any comment made right now would only be turned against him by Malik.
Ryou – a slight blush on his cheeks as well – chuckled at the sight and gave Yuugi a hug as well, "We'll miss you, Yuugi. Take care."
Yuugi's smile returned and he gave Ryou a hug as well, "Don't worry, Ryou. You know me."
"Dat's why he's sayin' it; you always get inta trouble." Yuugi pouted at the smugly grinning blonde standing next to Seto.
"Meanie!" Everyone but Seto laughed.
Seto watched the scene pass with interest, waiting for the right time to make his next announcement. Of course God had seen Yuugi's decision coming – the boy had already given up everything once when he was only in love, so why would he go back now that he was actually together with the one he'd wanted so much – and had one more surprise for the small group.
"Are you all done saying goodbye? Because I wasn't finished speaking yet." Malik glared, Joey looked at him annoyed, Ryou looked at the ground in hurt, and Yuugi looked ready to attack him. Seto made a mental note not to be so blunt about these things anymore.
"You can be such a pain!" Joey hit Seto on the head, looking away and obviously angry. Seto huffed at him, and glared at the blonde's back.
"Well if you would let me talk, you'd know why I'm interrupting your sweet moment of farewell."
"Well then spill." Malik growled, he himself also about to attack if the angel said anything wrong.
Seto rolled his eyes at the looks, "God is making an exception for us since he already knew Yuugi would choose Yami. We can all come visit whenever we want as long as we don't get caught."
Silence ruled over the group after Seto's calmly spoken words, jaws all slack and eyes wide before all snapped out of their stunned shock and cheered, tackling Yuugi to the ground in happiness.
Yuugi yelped as he fell to the ground in surprise, but laughed with his friends after that. Seto could indeed be a pain, already making them say goodbye while that wasn't even necessary. Joey would probably rant to him about that later though, so Yuugi just let it go.
"Guys! Get off me!" Yuugi laughed, but their weight was crushing him. Still baring wide smiles the other three angels got off him, Joey tackling Seto again. The brunette grunted and glared playfully at the other again, but didn't object to it.
After everyone was calmed down from their hyper-like states and Joey had released Seto from the strangle hold he'd been holding the other in, they turned a bit more serious again. Yuugi glanced at his four friends, "Hey Seto? My powers… are they…"
Seto smirked, "Nope, God's even leaving that intact. I had to nag him about that for a while but he gave in after I said Joey would most likely drag you back to Heaven anyway, and it would be safer to let you keep your wings in case he dropped you." Joey whacked him on the head for that comment, but Seto's smirk just widened tauntingly. Yuugi chuckled at the sight and the thought of Seto arguing with God like that.
"Thank you, Seto." The brunette nodded, before going back to his newly started argument with Joey. Yuugi could feel the wonderment in Yami's aura at how these two managed to be together, and couldn't help but wonder the same thing sometimes.
"Well, we really do need to go back…" Malik trailed off, on one hand not wanting to leave his friend behind, and on the other wanting to go back to his home. Yuugi smiled as Ryou and Joey's aura's reflected similar feelings.
"Don't worry guys. If I know Joey he'll want to come visit before the week is over." Joey pouted and Malik snickered, though all knew Yuugi was right.
"Now who's bein' the mean one huh? And besides, where are you gonna sleep?" Yuugi blinked for a second, already having forgotten about that little problem.
Everyone sweat dropped, except for Yami who grinned as he pulled something out of the pocket of his jeans. He was surprised that it had survived the fight with Aknunkanon, but definitely not complaining about it.
"No problem, human daddy-dearest left me something." Everyone looked up to see Yami holding a credit card, obviously Yoru's.
"How the hell did you get that?" Malik stared at it, though he praised Yami for getting it. Yup, Yuugi had really good taste. Getting beaten up and still daring to steal credit cards.
Yami shrugged, "He had so much money he never noticed if I stole one of these, so at one point I just kept one. He didn't even notice he was giving me money like this."
Everyone shook their heads before once again turning to Yuugi and saying goodbye, though less permanent this time. The four angels, after making sure no one was around to see them, let their wings appear and flew into the sky, waving one last time before casting spells that would take them back to Heaven. Yami and Yuugi waved until all four were gone, before sighing and starting towards the centre of town where there was bound to be a hotel or something.
Yoru's case was never solved, as no one could find a real reason why the man had died. Since Yami had never told anyone Yoru had been abusing him, and all his bruises, cuts, and scars had healed due to his demonic powers, the police had no reason to suspect him or Kumiko, and they were quickly cleared from the suspect list. No demon showed itself, and any demonic presence being on Earth, for their own reasons disappeared as soon as they felt Yami's aura.
Since Yami was legal and the only heir to Yoru really, he inherited not only Yoru's money, but also his company. Of course he had no idea what his father had been doing – the man didn't exactly talk much to him, except when it was mocking or taunting – so he had to be taught everything after he had decided to keep the company. He figured he could do something useful with it and he needed money if he wanted to live in this world, as well as stay Kumiko's caretaker.
Becoming Kumiko's caretaker had taken some magic since the judge had definitely not thought he could take care of the girl, but it had worked. Yami also understood now how Yoru had gotten away with the death of his mother.
Yoru's house had also been left for Yami, but he had sold it, not wanting to stay in a place that reminded him so much of everything Yoru had ever done. With the money of the house and that which he had inherited he had easily bought new house where he, Kumiko, and Yuugi now lived.
Sadly though, there are always those who will interfere with something that seems to be perfection. Some will disturb it purposefully, some by accident. Whichever, Yami as the son of the late demonic overlord, cannot escape this and without meaning to he will draw danger towards him once again.
"Isn't it getting a bit late, Yami?" Yuugi glanced up at the darkened sky as he and Yami sat in the park. Kumiko had gone over to a friend for a sleepover that night and they had decided to go for a walk before spending a simple quiet evening at home. With no reason to go home early, the two had lost track of time.
"Yeah, we should probably head home." Yami nodded and stood up from the ground where he'd been sitting against a tree. Yuugi rose as well, dusting himself off for a moment before they both headed towards the exit of the park, chatting happily without a care in the world.
Two strange auras made them both stop in their tracks and they looked up, Yami's eyes narrowing dangerously as he felt obvious demonic power radiating from the auras. Had his warning finally faded from memory and were demons now daring to come close to him again? Yami mentally growled at the though. He had no interest in once again being involved in demon business.
Two black-winged figures fell from the sky, seemingly unable to keep themselves airborne. As they hit the ground with loud cries of pain, Yuugi and Yami hesitantly glanced at each other. Yuugi slowly stepped closer to the two figures, unsure if he should really get any closer to demons, hurt or not.
The first demon seemed to be hurt the most, blood covering multiple parts of his body and even clinging to his long white hair. His eyes opened slowly as a long string of curses came from his mouth, russet orbs taking in where he had crashed before landing on Yuugi and pausing there in surprise.
The second, less hurt though blood still clung to him in many places, sat up slowly with a few groans of pain, rubbing the back of his head with the arm that seemed to be the least hurt. He had long untamed platinum-blond hair and lilac eyes that were oddly tinged with red. A note of insanity seemed to emit from those eyes, as if the owner wasn't completely sane anymore.
Yuugi glanced back at Yami again hesitantly, seeing the other glaring at the two forms on the ground. The two demons seemed to be confused as to where they were, and considering their wounds Yuugi doubted that they had meant to land in front of the late overlord's son, who had demanded all demons stay away from him.
He looked back at the two demons, swallowing slightly and wondering why he was about to ask what he was going to ask, but knowing that not halping these two would go against his very nature. On top of that, the two emitted a very similar feeling as Yami did, that of a soulful demon. Odd and very rare, but not impossible. Yuugi had heard of the phenomenon before, though he had no idea how it worked exactly.
"Who are you?"
The white-haired demon groaned, apparently unable to answer the question. The platinum-blonde grinned, deciding to answer since his companion was unable.
"Mariku is Mariku and Bakura is Bakura." He pointed to his friend at the latter name. His voice echoed the insanity that Yuugi had noticed in his eyes before, "We're running from demons because they kill people."
Yami and Yuugi both blinked at the answer, glancing at each other questioningly. Neither knew what to reply to that, but one thing was sure from that answer.
The upcoming time would be rather interesting again.
And that, dear people, is the end of the fic! You may all now start to whine for the sequel that I have actually already started writing… yeah, just spoiled the whining… oh well. The sequel will be titles 'Let Go' so go check that out. Some other notes as well.
For all who are interested, the names Kumiko and Yoru actually have a meaning. Kumiko means 'Eternal Beautiful Child', and pretty much symbolizes Yami's love for her, as well as her innocence. Yoru means 'Night', because he pretty much turned Yami's entire life into an ongoing night with no sign of anything good. (Yes, I actually thought of some meaningful names people! Fear me!)
I'll be posting the prologue of the sequel next week, but I don't know if I'm going to start weekly updating it after that yet. My writer's block is annoying me like hell but it seems to be getting less, partially thanks to all the ideas you've been sending in. They really helped me, thanks! Anyway, I hope I can just start updating it like I usually do but I'm not sure, so you'll hear more about that next week.
And for the last note, I'd love to dedicate this entire fic to my editor (who has quit because she thinks she does a bad job O.o;; damn you Dodo!) and sorta twin sister (just forget about the 2 years age difference and that we aren't related ne?) Dodo. She's the one that kept driving me to go on during NaNoWriMo because I wanted to beat her so bad to the 50k mark, and she also inspired a lot of pieces in this fic (and no people, she isn't being abused at home °sweatdrops°) You're the best Dodo, and I can't wait to see you during the summer holidays!
Well, I think that's it pretty much. Thanx to all my reviewers, you're the best, and I hope to see you all next week in the new fic!