Chapter One
—Bitten and Licked—

He wandered through the dunes in front of him, legs strong but starting to weaken. It mattered not. His horse had collapsed and been abandoned some miles back- the man had no use for creatures that could not carry him better then his own two feet.

It had been a close encounter with the Pharaoh that night, and the thief was angered to say he had underestimated his enemy's ability just slightly. Retreating with a few souvenirs that mattered little to him but had great value to the ruler he hated, Bakura trudged through the sandy winds that attempted to slow him down.

Things looked a little unfamiliar, having not visited this area of the land very often, and why should he have? It was far from the palace gates, far from his goals. Only tonight would such distance be useful, as it served as a hiding place from the soldiers that hunted him.

A faint rattling made the thief freeze, his grey eyes scanning the surrounding area with alertness. A hiss quickly accompanied the rattling and Bakura pulled out a dagger.

"A mere snake won't catch me" he growled, throwing the blade in the direction of the noise.

The only sound to interrupt the rattles was that of metal piercing sand. The hissing continued, and before the thief king could realize his situation there was a sharp pain surging through his calf, the rattle snake sinking its venomous fangs into his exposed skin.

With a sharp movement Bakura crushed the snake's head underfoot, uncaring as the action torn the serpent's teeth from his flesh violently.

Blood seeped into the sand as poison started to seep into his veins and immediately he decided to blame the Pharaoh for this, as it was his fault Bakura had wandered into some apparent snake territory in the first place.

"I'm not going to die" he hissed defiantly. "I'm not going to die…I'm not going to die…"

As his numbing body sunk to the blood speckled sand, Bakura continued to chant the words like a mantra, even as his vision was obscured by colors of cream and copper and then nothing but black.

He awoke to a rather strange sensation coming from the lower half of his body. A hand pressing against his thigh and soft…sucking?

He flicked his eyes open, weariness making his sight blurry and painful to use as he looked downwards.

A figure was crouched at his legs, holding one in their lap as they bent over it. The person was a woman, the thief realized as his vision cleared and his sense of touch became more real, his knee brushing against her breasts. The female's lips were firmly on his calf, precisely where the snake had bitten him. She was sucking gently and steadily on the wound, with one hand inside his robe to squeeze his thigh.

"Your hand, there…" he started, referring to the one gripping his upper leg. "It's in a bit of a risky spot, don't you think?"

He winced, disappointed with how tired he sounded but managing to pull on a smirk as her eyelids fluttered open to reveal roan hued eyes. He saw her cheeks flush slightly but she remained at task, continuing for a moment before removing her mouth and hands from him.

The woman swallowed what he assumed to be blood and traces of poison before she smiled, her face still tinged.

"It can't be helped" she told the man, her voice soft and fine. "I wanted to extract any poison I could, and placing pressure on your upper leg was a big help to me. I'm sorry for the discomfort"

"I wouldn't say what I felt was…discomfort" he replied, his voice stronger then before. She frowned and looked away, though only for a moment. "Either way, I don't want apologies. Where is this? Why aren't I dead yet? I can tell from the light outside that it's far past the time at which the snake's poison should have done me in"

"Ah…" she opened her mouth, hesitant on speaking. "Ah, yes. You see, I found you near my house. I treated you"

The thief snorted. "You saved me, you mean to say? Why go through the trouble of that?" he couldn't move, he noted mentally. Not a lot, anyways. Just curling his fingers felt difficult. "Don't you know who I am, woman?"

"I didn't save you selflessly" she informed him, getting to her feet. Bakura finally noticed he was on a bed and not sand like he was used to. "You were bitten by one of my snakes. A few had gotten loose, so it was my fault. Who you are doesn't make a difference to me in that situation"

"One of your snakes?" Bakura questioned.

"I'm a snake tamer, my duty being to raise them and place their venom in my body to produce medicines. How else would I have the antidote for that snake bite?"

He stared up at her, caught between a glare and a smirk. "I suppose I own you my life, then?"

"No" she answered with eyes obscured by ginger colored hair. "You almost died because of me, so I'm the one who has a dept to pay"

The man didn't want to bother replying to such an unnatural sounding statement, so he changed the subject. "Why can't I move?"

"The antidote takes about five days to destroy the poison in one's body. Until then, you'll be feeling pretty weak, I'm afraid. I wasn't able to remove much my self"

Bakura wanted to growl at the words she spoke but felt too tired to do so. Sleep was ebbing at his vision again.

"I'll leave now, so you rest" the ginger haired female told him, her feet padding towards the exit quietly. "I don't advise you to get up"

The thief king had fallen asleep before she had finished talking.

"So you just left him there?" the sandy blonde haired woman questioned, her lavender eyes shocked. "Isn't that sort of dangerous?"

The roan eyed figure shook her head, pulling some herbs up from where they were rooted in the garden soil. "No, I'm very familiar with the sedative effects of the medicine I gave him. He'll still be asleep when I get back"

That didn't make the blonde's frown disappear. "I don't like the sound of it though…letting him stay in your house while you're all alone? What if he attacked you?"

"He's as weak as a baby feline right now, Mai" the woman retorted smartly. "He doesn't even have a reason to harm me. I'm not keeping him prisoner"

Mai scoffed at the remark. "Maybe that's how you see it, but you're annoyingly strict with your patients! I felt like a caged rat the last time you treated me!"

"How could you say that?" the ginger headed one asked in a flattering tone. "You're far to pretty to be comparing yourself to musty creatures…"

The blonde fluffed her hair "Well, of course I am!"

The redhead smiled. Mai was easy to distract sometimes.

"So tell me then, what does he look like?"

Pausing in her work of uprooting plants, the roan eyed women started at the garden disapprovingly. "What does he look like? Oh Mai, he's not your type. All scarred up with unkempt hair, tattered clothing and bitten fingernails"

She could picture Mai making a pouting face as she spoke. "Really? Well that's a pity"

"It is, isn't it?" the redhead agreed sympathetically before looking at her company with a glare. "Now are you going to help me collect these herbs or just stand there and watch?"

"Just stand and watch" was the whimsy reply.

She acted like a cat, Bakura decided when he woke up, watching her as she padded around the room in black slippers, almost soundless. Careful of where her feet went and ever aware of what was beneath her she moved, her cream colored robes flowing with her.

"Woman" he announced, deciding it was time to make his conscious state known.

Her reaction was as feline-like as he had predicted, the woman's head jerking smoothly towards the sound of his voice, roan eyes skimming over the floor to meet his half-lidded grey ones. "Good evening" she told him, relaxed. "Did I wake you?"

"Yes" he lied, bothered by her pleasantries. In truth he had been awake before she had entered the room but kept silent, curious of what her presence was for.

"I'm sorry" she apologized, and Bakura hated it. It was the second time she'd said that to him since their meeting, which was more apologies then he'd been given his whole life. It was strange and he felt far too comatose to deal with strange things just then.

"I had been trying to be quite" she continued. "I'm surprised; usually people stay asleep for two whole days after I administer the medicine, but you're very unstable in your sleep. You must have a strong urge to hurry and get better. Rushing yourself isn't good though, as it'll only make you more tired in the end. Just sleep"

"Shut up" he told her finally, feeling good to have said the words. "I hate your voice. Go away"

He had expected her to leave as he had told her- to be hurt by his demand and flee. Instead her feet hit the floor with more force then he knew was normal, carrying her to him. Quickly she was staring down at the thief, her arms crossed over her chest and her mouth turned downwards into a frown.

"I know my snakes nearly killed you but that doesn't mean you can speak to me like that" she snipped, her eyes hard. Not nearly as hard as his own, but enough for a woman. "If you want me to go then ask, don't insult me and order me to get out of my own home"

Sneering up at her he played along, because he still couldn't manage to sit up. "Leave…please"

She did as he sarcastically requested, exiting the room with the same faint footsteps she had used when she entered.

Groaning quietly as he tried to fight sleep, Bakura wondered offhandedly where his outer robes had gone and if it was smart or stupid of the woman to take his knives from him.

"You're able to move a bit, I see" the woman told him the next morning when she walked into the room to see him attempting to crawl towards the door. "Didn't I tell you to stay in bed?"

"I have to relieve myself" he told her, smirking inwardly as an uncomfortable expression crossed her face. "Help me walk"

Gingerly she took him by the wrist and forearm, pulling him to his feet. He let his body fall against her, feeling triumphant when her frame shook under the weight. Wrapping one of his arms around her neck and keeping silent as his free hand slinked somewhere on her hip she shuffled herself and her patient to the latrine, where a no doubt awkward moment for the female passed waiting for him to finish.

"You're very nice" he told her innocently as they were making their way back to the room he was to sleep in. "I don't think anyone's ever been this nice to me before" he continued, letting dark tones slip into his voice, leaning closer then necessary to murmur in her ear. "Why are you so nice?"

Her mouth was pursed so as they neared the bed Bakura purposely lost his footing, sending both their bodies to the floor. She let out a breathless yelp as her back thudded on the ground, the thief falling on top of her, grinning.

"I can guess why you're so nice" he hissed at her, arms trying not to shake as he held himself up. "You took my weapons from me. Disarmed me. Now why would you do that?" he let his arms weaken, the weight of his body pressing into her. "You're scared of me, aren't you?"

Her reply wasn't what he had expected. Instead of shivering or whimpering or freezing up she kneed him in the stomach, rolling the thief's pain jolted form off her. She was quick getting to her feet as he coughed, curling on his side.

"Bitch!" he snarled, clutching at his stomach.

"Extreme physical activity is unadvised" she told him in a tone that didn't fit her pretty face. "Stay here and rest. Once you think you have enough strength to hold down a woman who weights less then a hundred pounds, then go ahead and try"

With those as her parting words she spun on her heel and disappeared from sight.

"Say…" started the woman near her as they strolled through the market, the morning sun just starting to get hot.


"How's your little patient doing?"

The ginger haired woman frowned. "He's not little at all. Very heavy"

Mai rolled her eyes at the response. "Forget I tried to talk teasingly to you. Serious this time, how is he?"

"His recovery is rapid" the snake tamer replied. "He might by up and about in just another two days or so"

"Really? So does that mean I'll get to meet him?"

"Mai…he really isn't your type"

"You aren't usually this defensive towards your patients" the blonde pried, smirking knowingly. "I have a suspicion you're just keeping some beautiful man all to yourself before you have to spend the night with that priest…not that such ideas make much sense, he's very attractive…"

The roan eyed woman sighed as she inspected a basket of apples. "There are some men in this world that might find your flirtatious nature to be more annoying then appealing, and this man is one of them…" she pointed at the fruits while glancing at the vendor's owner. "How old are these?"

"A day and a half" answered the man.

"Nonsense!" Mai scoffed. "No one can resist my charm!"

The snake tamer was the one rolling her eyes then, paying for a few apples of her choice before they continued down the market street.

I'm sure I haven't watched Yu-Gi-Oh in about three years, but recently I gained the ability to download the Japanese version and might I say its faaantabulous. There's violence and everything. I like the Memory arc the most, since it involves children's card games the least! Haw haw haw.

With my skills as an author somewhat honed I decided it was finally time to write in this fandom, since I had been very eager to do so five years prior to now but knew I was lacking in skill. Not that I'm top notch now, I know I'm not super awesome, but I'm better then back then, anyways.

This chapter starts off around episode 203-204, before Bakura goes to take the Millennium Ring from Mahado, but I'm altering the timeline slightly to make it so they still haven't run into Bakura yet when Kisara is introduced. I suppose this story could be used to explain Diabound's change in appearance and the priests' inability to find Bakura…but it doesn't have to.

I purposely didn't introduce my OC's name this chapter, completely because Bakura doesn't care who she is and she doesn't care who he is so they have no reason to get acquainted with each other, and that's that. She probably does know who he is, but as far as she's concerned he's just a patient (abet a slightly dangerous one) whom she is obligated to treat. Finally, in the last scene with her and Bakura, he was trying to intimidate her, not molest her…just in case someone thought otherwise. If I was Bakura, I'd be irked at the idea of some woman being unafraid of my presence.

Thanks for reading, reviews would be appreciated.