Feel on the Dark
written by RL.Angstshipping
say good-bye to the hindering past;

Author's Note: We're baaack. Sorry for the lengthy delay (what was it, five months?) in our story. You've continued to amaze us by still adding this story to your alerts and favorites, so thank you very much! Hopefully this chapter won't disappoint.

Fifth Sight

Too Much Time Between You and I

The first thing that a person did after a fight with a longtime-lover (and it was hard to think of Bakura as anything but that, couple or not) was generally to mope. Wallow in misery and think of how wretched life (or in this case, death) was. That was not the case for Mariku. His emotions connected with the fight, while they hadn't disappeared, faded quickly the moment Bakura was out of sight and his mind almost immediately shifted to something else. He'd felt pain. It had been minuscule, but it was there. He hadn't gotten to enjoy it, as he'd been too caught up in the argument, but now he had the chance to really appreciate it. Moving against the wall, he gave a heavy sigh, focusing on the small ache from Bakura's punch.

How was this possible? What switch had been flicked on that allowed Mariku, who'd gone decades without pain, to be able to feel it once more? Whatever it was, he was thanking whatever God or gods that existed for it. It subsided far too quickly (though given how little it actually was, that was no surprise), and Mariku was left only with a memory. There had to be some way to get that feeling again, a way to even intensify it. As greedy as it was, Mariku was already wanting more.

Standing up straight, he started down the hallway with the intention of going back to his room (the master bedroom, though given their current guests, it was occupied). There was a group of boys standing in the hallway, talking about something mundane (he overheard bits and pieces describing a girl that actually caught his attention -- clearly, despite it killing him, he still had his lust), that normally would have been of no interest to him. Unless...

He could feel pain, so could he cause it? Bakura and he weren't entirely incapable of affecting the outside world, though it was generally only possible when they were extremely emotional. It was even rarer for them to be able to control what physical actions came from said emotions. Now that he had that buzz of pain, was he more... alive? Would he be able to actually focus his energy and control his actions?

He approached the boys, placing his hand on the shoulder of the one closest to him. He tensed, probably feeling that awkward chill that humans always got when they came in contact with ghosts. What to do, what to do? The decision was a hard one, especially since Mariku didn't know how much force would be required to hurt a live being. Then again, it wouldn't really be an issue if he used 'too much' force. If anything, he'd enjoy that more.

He couldn't make the boy to turn around, so he relied on hitting him with as much strength as he could muster up in the lower back. His victim stumbled forward, falling onto another boy who then managed to not only knock over a vase, but land on it, ending up with a shard cutting into the hand that he'd tried to catch himself with. Not directly Mariku's doing, but there was blood and he'd been, in part, the cause for it. That alone made him grin, giving him a giddy feeling that he hadn't felt in years. It was purely sadistic, and without a doubt, his favorite emotion. As much as he wanted to watch the boys' reactions, he was too excited to stay still. He needed to find Bakura, needed to tell him what he'd found out. His discovery took precedence over their earlier fight.

He knew exactly where he'd find the other; the attic had become Bakura's bedroom/sancutary over their years together in the house. While Mariku would occasionally worm his way in there, he was usually kind enough to stay away (though his kindness was mostly sparked by his preference for his own room). Now, however, he hurried up into the attic. It hadn't been long at all since their fight, and Bakura was more than likely still furious with him, but he simply didn't care. "Oi, oi, Bakura!"

Staring down at where that damnable bus had been, when it had dropped these little brats off, Bakura felt fist clenching and unclenching under his chin. Oh, he was pissed. How dare that God-damned, ungrateful, insignificant fuck-up... who the fuck did Mariku think he was, anyway?

His body was still tingling with the horribly tormenting sensation of what he could have had, had that little bastard -- Ryou? -- not woken up. Lust. Lust had never been a bad thing until now. He was so fucking frustrated.

He visibly jerked when mariku's voice rang out behind him. Whirling around, he glared hatefully at the blonde, gritting his teeth and baring them much like an animal. "What the fuck do you want, Ishtar?" he spat, knowing that using his last name would serve as more of a stab than just not acknowledging him at all.

Mariku took a moment before he answered Bakura, happily soaking in the other's anger and using it to add to his feeling of euphoria. What a delightful feeling to have once more! (In the past, Mariku had always enjoyed feeding off of his partner's hatred similar to that of a leech feeding off blood.) "So bitter," he drawled with a small chuckle, shaking his head.

The fact that Mariku was getting off to his anger only made it flare up more. It was a problem that really caused itself. No one fucking used Bakura, nor did they laugh at him. No one. He began to growl low in his throat, feeling his teeth creaking under the pressure he was forcing them to be put under.

"Go to Hell," he spat, too furious for words.

Yet, Mariku still ignored him. "I made one of our visitor's bleed," he grinned, taking a few steps closer to the thief. That was a bit of an exaggeration, as he'd only indirectly caused the incident, but as Bakura was no where near as sadistic as he was (in fact, he tended to to be masochistic, a feat that made him a perfect complement to the Egyptian) he felt that he didn't need to elaborate. Bakura would have no interest (or little interest) in physically harming their guests. Instead, what Mariku thought would be most important to him was, "We can affect physical beings. We can touch the human world, all on our own."

At first, Bakura hardly cared for Mariku's words, seeing too much red to hear anything at all. After a few moments, it began to sink in. As fucking pissed off as he was... He held up one of his hands and stared at it before clenching it into a fist slowly. They could...

"How is that possible?" he asked to no one. "How?" He turned back and stared once more at that spot where the bus had been, the fisted hand flattening back out and settling against the glass. Only when one exerted enough energy did it become a physical form -- he froze, now unable to look away from the spot where his hand had been. There was a fog, as there would have been from a drastic change in temperature. There was suddenly sound, a breathy one, as Bakura began to laugh.

It didn't matter how anymore -- no, this was a wonderful blessing! Not only could they feel pain, but they could interact with the world around them! Perhaps not by much, but... "This came from the possessions," he muttered to himself as he spun around, only then remembering Mariku stood there.

Still, Mariku fed off of his anger, grinning as the other slowly understood what he'd said. He'd moved just a bit closer, in attempts to hear what Bakura had been saying to himself. Possessions? Was that plausible? It was the event that took place just prior to the discovery. If that was the case, there had to be a way to leech even more life (is that what they were doing?) from the two boys. It was a blessing in disguise, just as Mariku had suggested when Ryou and Malik had first arrived. Keh, and Bakura had doubted him!

With a heavy glare in the blonde's direction, Bakura elbowed his way past the other. "If this continues, we might be able to leave this damned house," he began, a thought that hadn't yet crossed Mariku's mind. He'd been too focused on causing pain, maybe evendeath, so when the other mentioned it, he grinned. That grin quickly faded however when Bakura continued with a cruel smirk, "I can't wait for that -- I'll finally be free of you." With those words, Bakura left the attic, intent on testing just how far he could go with his newfound power.

Mariku watched him in silence. They'd be able to leave, but he'd be alone? It wasn't as if Mariku had never been alone before, but he fed off of other people, off their pain and agony. He could find more, no doubt about that, he would just lose the one person that had managed to become close to him.

He moved to the window, glancing at the dirt road. It was strange, but he still could remember walking up it, grinning and laughing with Bakura. That reality was one long past, something he'd never get back. Was second life really worth the trouble?

( P A S T )
Last Rites To Sleepless Nights

Kicking the dirt path before them, Mariku grinned as he caused a small storm of dust. This was no ordinary night and he was excited (and impatient). Bakura and he had made a deal: they'd wipe this guy's mansion clean and then, with the money they'd saved up over the years, 'retire' and live overly luxurious, somewhere other than this hideous place. Forever.

The idea of settling down had done nothing to deflate Bakura's ego. He was always a self-confident and cocky man, but right now? He wouldn't have been worried if the fucking army came at him, guns drawn.

"Where would you want to go?" the pale thief questioned, turning his gaze to his blonde companion.

That question was a hard one to answer. Together, they'd managed to travel all over and seen so many cities and towns, that picking a place to actually stay seemed impossible. "A house by the beach," was the answer Mariku finally settled on, grinning to the other. "The women are always sexier near the ocean," he snickered, though he couldn't keep his violet eyes on Bakura. Instead, he focused on swallowing the lump in his throat. Almost three years with this man -- Mariku had not only learned to drop his typical hateful attitude around him, but he'd grown attached to him as well. Perhaps a little more than that, though Mariku found it hard to admit otherwise. He was a kid (well, he had been; he'd just turned 18 not too long ago), whereas Bakura was... not so much a kid. That had never stopped them from fooling around but...

Bakura quirked a brow as he noticed the way Mariku had been eying him. He was amused at the other's wish to live by the beach; Mariku had never really seemed interested or upset when they'd set up their home near one once. He chuckled, replying, "Of course they are. They're there to show off."

Mariku looked up ahead at the house they were approaching, "Oi, we'll have something like this one then?" It was huge, a place he could have never pictured himself in, had he never met Bakura. Then, he looked to Bakura, grinning at him, "I'd put those women to shame, though."

"Something like it, but then," Bakura smirked, trailing off as he stepped closer to Mariku. He let his hand swivel up and brush against the nape of the blonde's neck. "We could always go for bigger."

Mariku leaned against the warmth and chuckled, "Nn, we'll never get something to match the size of your ego." He leaned in though, stealing a quick kiss from Bakura. He was years younger but just as tall (a few inches taller, actually). To keep the other from seeing his expression, however, he grabbed the older man's arm (not his hand; he was careful in choosing) and pulled him forward. "Hurry up! The sooner we're done, the sooner I can get completely plastered in celebration."

Bakura's attitude was too good to be hindered from the other making it impossible to make the kiss something more. He was excited and his hormones were doing nothing to help the matter, but damn, it would feel so much better to get it afterwards. "And a celebratory fuck will be in order," he added, though he certainly wouldn't turn down the alcohol.

"Besides, this shouldn't take more than an hour, and then we'll be filthy rich bastards."

( P R E S E N T )
Crumble and Break

It was several hours later (though after existing for so long, one tended to forget exactly how time passed for the living) when Bakura found himself watching the two humans that had 'helped' him out. Seeing them breathe and laugh and feel -- oh, he would be able to do it all again soon. He could practically taste it and it was delicious. With a low chuckle, he idled behind them, noting how Mariku's human walked a little more carefully than his own. Malik, of course, had every reason to walk carefully, given how sore he was from the sex he'd... well, how could he really describe it? He hadn't meant to have it, but it hadn't been forced upon him? At least, not in the usual sense.

Pride bubbled up in Bakura, knowing that he had caused the other's discomfort, though he was cut short in congratulating himself when Ryou cried out, "Ah!" They -- he and Malik -- had been heading down to the dining hall. The rooms around them seemed to be empty, probably because their temporary inhabitants had already gone to dinner. It had been nice, being alone with Malik, up until the moment was ruined and he stumbled, crashing into the blonde, almost knocking him over. As he righted himself and apologized profusely, he lifted his foot, seeing a rather large piece of broken glass. What the...? Looking around, he understood that it must have been from the vase -- the vase had been broken? But by who? And why had no one cleaned it up? This was dangerous! Not to mention, with his luck, the teacher would walk up and think they'd done it.

Malik managed to steady himself, glancing down at the vase with contempt. Leave it to a group of teenagers to break something and not bother to take the time to sweep it out of the way. (And leave it to Ryou to trip over it.)

Reaching down, Ryou shuddered as he felt suddenly chilled, his eyes darting to where he'd thought he had seen something. It had been a trick of the shadows, but that didn't stop his heart from racing. As he shook it off and then went to pick up the jagged piece, he gasped, his hand ice cold and pained. He tried to let go of the glass, but he couldn't -- his hand wouldn't move. It wouldn't obey him; it literally felt like someone was holding their hand around his and forcing it to stay shut.

Whereas he'd been about to comment on the other's clumsiness, Malik hesitated when the other picked up the shard of glass. "What are you doing?" If he'd been trying to move it, wouldn't he have let go by now? Judging by the blood trickling down his boyfriend's arm, Ryou was actually squeezing it. "Ryou, stop!"

Ryou's fingers finally snapped open and the glass fell to the ground, breaking into even more shards. Staring at his now opened hand, the green-eyed teen watched as the blood that had bubbled up now flowed freely. He didn't comprehend much except for that and the vague pain that was only starting to creep up his arm.

Beside them, Bakura, who was once more wearing a smirk that could only fit the devil, surveyed the damage he had caused. It appeared that they could, in fact, cause harm. The hand he'd only just had on Ryou's gripped the boy's wrist, holding it still while he ran his tongue over the crimson substance he hadn't gotten to taste in so damned long, feeling it slip down his throat and then into every bone, down to the tip of his digits. With a pleasant shudder, he pulled back (having snapped back from his almost drunken stupor), just in time to see Ryou collapse.

Malik wasn't able to do much but barely catch the other, sinking down to the floor easily. It was better to just let the other lie down than try to hold him up. "... Ryou?" He managed to keep himself from sounding too frantic, though given the situation, it was probably well deserved.

The pale teen (now starkly so) didn't react for a moment, but then, slowly, his head rolled to the side, and he groaned quietly. After a few more of these actions, he blinked his eyes open, but they were hazy and he couldn't focus or see. They sharpened but only mildly. "Malik," he whispered. At the sound of his own voice, he seemed to snap back into the world's present. Lifting his hand again, he saw that there was still blood. In fact, it hadn't even stopped bleeding. It was not a very deep or big wound but it should have at least started clotting up. "I need a bandage," he said, more to himself, and then wiped the blood on his pants. Turning his eyes to his boyfriend (ee, even bleeding and confused, he still got a giddy feeling just from looking at the other), he asked, "Did... I just pass out?" He was being nonchalant about this, but really, he was in shock.

Malik, too, was at a loss for words. Watching in mild disgust as the other wiped the blood on his pants, though really, he couldn't blame Ryou. What was he supposed to do? Let it gush out and dry on his hand? A bandage, though, seemed like something that would be hard to find. He stood up, taking Ryou's uninjured hand and tugging him to his feet. "I guess we'll still go to the dining room," he suggested. "I'm sure Mrs. Kinomiya will have a first-aid kit." That had to be a requirement for a class trip; someone was bound to hurt themselves.

"I honestly don't know what happened," Malik replied nervously. "Do you remember picking up that shard?"

Ryou, however, was unable to shake off how upset he was. First the sex, and now this... The sex they had sort of played off. In the end, it really hadn't been bad for them. In fact, it had brought them closer together. They had, however, unconsciously had sex.

On Malik's end, he'd managed to keep an outwardly calm appearance. He didn't want to think about what had led him (his body, more accurately) to have sex with Ryou. He could still hear his best-- boyfriend's voice, in a tone that he'd never heard from the other. 'Try again.' They were in a haunted house, but he was still intent on convincing himself that ghosts weren't real, that this trip was stupid, and...

That wasn't working out so well. His sister always said everything happened for a reason -- maybe that's all it had been? Destiny tired of them waiting for them to admit how they felt...? Yeah, likely excuse.

"Yeah," came Ryou's answer, delayed as it was. Before they could start to the dining room, however, Ryou added, snapping out of his haze, "Malik, wait. I'll just... I have a shirt that I brought with me that I could get dirty. I'll just clean off with that." He really didn't want want to cause a big fuss. "I was just going to move the glass out of the middle of the hallway. I mean, until someone cleaned the rest up," he rattled off, watching as more blood bubbled up from the gash on his hand. "I just... couldn't let go."

This was the kind of thing he would have been excited over, if it hadn't been an actual wound. "Malik, do you think... we pissed them off somehow?" he asked, his voice now low.

Bakura, standing off a bit from them, could only chuckle lowly. Humans were truly pathetic; that's why he had no remorse for them.

Malik wanted to protest and insist that the other get medication for the wound, but Ryou's second question caught his attention. "Ryou, ghosts aren't real." That had become some sort of mantra for him now. Frowning, he continued, "Even if they were, we didn't do anything."

Giving his lover an incredulous look, Ryou hissed, "Malik, weird shit is happening. We're in a haunted house." Was the blonde seriously this in denial or was he an idiot? Okay, that was a little harsh but...

Flexing his hand, despite that he knew he shouldn't, Ryou grit his teeth at the pain. "And if they're not mad, then why are they going after us and not anyone else? I'm sure people would be freaked out if they woke up with no memory of doing something or had no control over their body!" He frowned, growing more upset by the minute, "Malik... what if they're playing with us? I mean, they've been dead for so long... what if it's just for fun?" But then, 'fun' didn't generally entail sex and blood. "Sick fun, but..."

Crap, what if they didn't stop? They had been thieves, right? Wasn't it likely that they were mad about their death and vengeful?

Malik rolled his eyes, "I still think these things are rigged." Even he was finding that excuse to be weak though -- one couldn't rig possession and make two teenagers unknowingly have sex with each other. "If they were really that vindictive and having fun like that, wouldn't they go after more than just us?" Though they'd kept quiet about what had happened to them; maybe some of their other classmates had, too. "We can only be so interesting."

"Rigged?" In attempts to hide his irritation with the other, Ryou ended up sounding almost desperate. "Malik, how would they have rigged these things? Do you think people were hiding somewhere and then drugged us and put us in that position?" He stopped, however, when he remembered in a flash seeing Malik collapse to the floor and feeling a striking pain in the back of his head. A very solid one. They had to have been knocked out, which certainly made him question himself but then... there was no one in that room! There hadn't been; Ryou was positive of it.

Still, it was hard to believe that they were the only ones being picked on. Confused, he murmured, "Malik, what if it gets worse?"

"Worse?" Malik was beyond protesting that the house wasn't actually haunted, though he was still clinging to the hope that it was all fake. "We wouldn't be on a field trip to a house where 'worse' things happen." They could be assured of that, right? Though really, having sex with your best friend when neither of you instigated it was pretty major.

As much as the idea of ghosts fascinated him, this wasn't what he wanted. It wasn't how he wanted it. "Malik, I don't want anything to happen to you," Ryou whispered, gripping Malik's hand (which he only just realized he was still holding) tight. "I mean," he shrugged, lifting his injured hand minimally. It still hadn't stopped bleeding, but he was at a loss for what to say. Hadn't he promised Malik before they even stepped inside that he'd protect him?

"Let's go back to the room and I'll fix this up. Then we can get some dinner." Neither of them seemed too enthused about the latter statement; it was hard to be hungry at a time like this.

"Alright," Malik whispered, frowning as he looked down at Ryou's hand. "Ryou, nothing will happen to me."

They both started to the room, Malik allowing Ryou to use him for support. Normally a hand wound wouldn't require such care, but Ryou had passed out once already. Who knew if he'd do it again?

Ryou was still irritated that Malik blew everything off that happened with such... ignorance. He wanted to continue pressing the subject, but then, like Malik, he also wanted to avoid it. For now. He'd bring it up later -- there always had to be a closure to everything, after all.

When they got to the room, Ryou jerked away from Malik's hold and collapsed along the wall, leaving a bloody smear. He didn't fall this time, regaining his composure. It happened so slowly and yet too quickly, all at once. Ryou turned to face Malik again, bangs shadowing his face and a cruel, cold smirk set in place. His eyes glinted with a terrible, dangerous light that would never fit his friend. In a chillingly calm (and yet, still vaguely delighted) way, Ryou's lips parted and the not-Ryou spoke in a voice that caused a shiver to run down the blonde's spine:

"So you really don't believe in ghosts?"

End Fifth Sight