A/N: Hey all, I've just checked the previous chapter for spellies and errors. It is my intention to continue this story very soon.
Disclaimer: Don't own, don't sue.
- The Shamer
"I wish to walk, master." The apprentice demanded stubbornly, after seeing the horse he should have been riding, the poor thing's sweat was glistening in the strong sun from carrying the massive weight from his luggage alone. Should the poor horse be forced to carry Yugi as well? No, he wouldn't allow that.
Or maybe this was just an excuse to look around town as he went, it wasn't everyday he could see the capital first hand, but who would want to hear that excuse?
"But your Holiness. We have to hurry to the palace, and there are thieves running around in the street…It's…It's not safe-!" The guard insisted acutely.
"It's fine, Yugi will be fine by himself." Kyoushi broke in, throwing a sideways glance at his apprentice. "You have my permission. Just be there a couple of hours before dusk. And don't take off that cloak, if you are recognized there will be trouble, do you understand?"
Smiling brightly Yugi nodded happy that his master weren't as strict when it came to letting him loose. He believed in Yugi's superiority to the thugs and thieves.
Yugi may not have the necessary muscle to become a soldier but he wasn't weak at all. Yugi was accustomed to physical labor and always offered a hand at the stables when needed, even though the other priests were getting frequent heart attacks from watching their holy self shoveling horseshit in the stables and petting his favorite horse, silver.
Silver was a beautiful stallion and a very rare breed never seen before, his coat held an unspoiled gleam and his eyes were dark, demanding and regal, just like the horse itself. Silver had yet to let anyone near him, he was the wild and untamable, but still an irreplaceable, treasure in the stables.
Yugi ran his hands through his hair, before covering it with the jade-colored silk hood. The edges were sewn with threads of silver emphasing his amethyst eyes. If people were to see his hair trouble might arise. As long as he could remember his hair had been not just one color, instead it was three - Red, black and golden blonde. At the temple they'd been looking down on his unnaturally spiky hair, though his hair wasn't stiff it had still defied gravity and was often laughed at, so in the end Yugi had had two choices, if he wanted to be left alone. First choice would be to cut off the mess and become a baldie like the others.
'Heavens no.' Yugi thought, then he would have to go brow-less too, and that was just, too much. His second choice had been, to grow his hair longer like master Kiyoshi, to make it heavier, and true enough, his hair now reached the middle of his back and had therefore become so heavy that it had eventually smoothened out, though it now needed to be tied up like a girl's. He sighed, he'd also been mistaken for a girl on more than one occasion and it bothered him greatly. When people had a better look at him, they would realise that he was not particularly girly, but being a slow bloomer and not growing as fast as other boys his age made it harder.
The narrow streets of the Capital's less fortunate inhabitants, were quite lively at this time of day. Street kids squatted in the alleys, mud soaking their filthy tunics as they played with a piece of broken wood. Annoyed by their laughter and yells, one of the shopkeepers grabbed a boy standing a few feet away, and threw the kid to the ground – mercilessly - with one arm.
The child being no more than five years old and unhealthily thin hit the ground like a frail glass doll, left arm, twisted in an abnormal position at his side. The other kids started running away, leaving their friend behind, afraid to be the next one in line.
"That oughta teach ya' street rats to stay away!" The ruffian of a shopkeeper grinned viciously. When the now weeping kid made an attempt to get up the man moved to kick the child but suddenly found himself being pulled backwards making him stumble and fall over. "What the-!"
The shopkeeper glared at the cloaked newcomer, "What in Ra's is the meanin' of this! You want ye arm chopped off or what?" Yugi just stood still and watched the fat man's eyes as they sought out his, suddenly freeze, and then widen in horror as they met cool amethyst.
"Look at yourself." Yugi spoke, voice clear and strong, but that wasn't it. It was his eyes and he noticed too late to stop it. Amethyst eyes, hard and merciless bored into the soul of the commoner, who started trembling as he grabbed his head, screaming, helplessly as he was forced to See.(1)
Faint memories started flashing past Yugi's inner eye. The sins, the crimes, theft, bribe and whoring, the drunkard who beat and raped his own daughter at home, all that and so much more, Yugi suddenly felt the urge to puke. This person was corrupt, twisted and undoubtedly deserved worse than death could offer him. Why did he always have to stumble upon the most twisted of all the screws?
Apparently Yugi didn't need a relief of his discomfort, the man had already let go of his control. The fat man lay on the ground, face pale, body shivering in convulsion as fresh smelly puke whelmed from his mouth. The sharp smell of alcohol filled the air and Yugi stepped away as the man continued puking on himself.
Utterly revolted by the sight, Yugi hurried to the boy's side and gathered him in his arms before taking off, down the street in a spurt as people started noticing the ruckus around the still trembling man lying outside his grocery shop, unaware of an amused pair of ruby eyes watching the scene – and the cloaked stranger - with interest. Smirking as he muttered an 'Oh.' of surprise, Prince Atemu headed towards the palace.
"Your highness! The bath is ready." The servant announced as he waited for the nod of approval before hurrying off to bring the prince's formal silk attire.
Atemu let himself sink into the bathwater holding the strong scent of lavender. Sighing as he rubbed his temples trying to rid himself of the headache he'd received only twenty minutes prior when he had enjoyed a verbal spat - flying objects included - with the pharaoh. His father had been more than a little angry about his disappearance, which always resulted in broken objects. The old ruler was getting up in the years and had no patience and certainly no understanding for the prince's need for 'freedom'.
Just last night he'd promised himself to at least on this day, stay put and act like the heir he was supposed to be, but even that he couldn't do.
He truly was useless.
Washing off the little dirt he'd gotten from the street, he rose from the scented water and wrapped himself in whispery silk cloth.
The prince had felt unspeakably tired and exhausted lately, sometimes even sleeping away half the day didn't help more than an hour or two. This, of course, resulted in sleeping during lessons of social studies, etiquette, and Mahado's failing attempt at teaching him how to control the ancient magic that followed in the blood of every member of the royal family.
As a child he'd been called a cripple, because of his unhealthy body, but suddenly he'd felt like a whole new person, refreshed, overflowing with vitality like never before and all that had happened after he'd fallen ill. It was strange, it was mysterious, and it was not something to ask about. No one talked about that episode. No one told him anything, and he still had no idea what was wrong with him. But one thing was for certain, he once again felt weak.
Even thought he was by no means weak or frail, Atemu still often found himself powerless in some situations. Like he'd lost his will, to eat, to sleep, to talk. Maybe it was stress and he just needed to visit the concubines more often. He wasn't sure what to do at all. He prayed to Ra that he would never ever become that living zombie he'd lived as, from the past. Over his dead body. He wouldn't accept that.
In the mirror was a healthy young man, ruby eyes clear and sharp. On his head gleamed a beaten golden circlet studded with rubies pressing down the wild tricolored tresses of hair. He was dressed in the finest white and red silk tunic, golden bands spiraling from wrist to elbow, emphasizing the exotic milky tan of his skin. Lastly he let the servant tie the golden bands of his sandals, stitched with golden thread and studded with rubies.
"Am I presentable now?" Atemu asked annoyed and already feeling uncomfortable in his formal attire. He missed the soft wool tunic he wore when sneaking out of the palace.
The servant girl blushed a deep shade of red as she fought to find her voice, but stuck with a nervous nod as her voice trembled. "Y-yes, your highness shines bright as Ra."
He smirked, it was only normal after all, and he always had this effect on women. What silly creatures they were, eating the sight of him everyday, and living in the dream of maybe getting to be close to him, the prince. It disgusted him how they all acted lovesick, but then again who could blame them when he was the image of perfection and probably the best looking, most desired, richest unmarried, call-it-whatever, man in the all of upper and lower Egypt.
With that he decided it was time to get down in the great hall to greet the guests.
"Your highness, its time to go…" Seeing Atemu walk out on the balcony and jump up on the railing, the servant started panicking. "…Why are you going out on the balcony? Your highness that's dangerous! What are you thinking! Get down from there!"
The party was grand, and with the amount of people chattering and flirting to right and left, it sounded much like a lot of buzzing bees to Yugi's ears. His thoughts traveled to the kid earlier, he'd managed to make some of the palace healers help the boy, only after begging his master to get the child some help. The boy had luckily only broken and arm and gotten away with a few bruises.
Deciding he needed some fresh air, Yugi went out on the balcony to calm himself and rest his sore ears.
"—Get down from there!" A girl literally screeched somewhere over his head. The next thing he new a dark figure had jumped from the balcony above and was now holding a flustered Yugi against the marble floor after using him as a landing cushion. All air had been blown out of his lungs and he was gasping to gain breath.
Ruby eyes widened as they met furious amethyst. Yugi was growling.
The ruby-eyed boy was straddling him still staring and unmoving, then suddenly his hands shot out and groped Yugi's chest.
"Aww, you're not cute at all! Your chest is all flat, aren't you ashamed? You're this tall and still no boobs."
The next moment Prince Atemu found himself shoved off of the flat-chested girl and onto the cold stone floor.
(1.) - Yugi has an ability to make people face their sins and have them relive their most horrible moments in life, forcing them to acknowledge the evil they have done to others.
Thank you for all the reviews. I decided to do next chap so here it is. :)
Edited - 28th of September, 2013.