Dark Reborn: It depends on how you want to spin the "Phantom Business" because when I thought about it I came to the conclusion that it could be interpreted in two ways (at least to me, readers may see more than I do which is a good thing): one, it is a reverse Dread Pirate Roberts in how the title is passed down with a job in mind, or two, the business is 'we lurk, we stalk, and we are perfectionist' or something of that sort. Either way go ahead and use it, but I hope you will give me a heads up of what you use it in so I can read what you have in mind for it.
SilverDragon-Purity: The connection between Yami and Vincent are answered in this chapter... it may be cliche but I figured it was a good twist from the original plot of Phantom of the Opera. Yep, gotta love/respect the Abby's silver fox and the interesting/quarky goth girl (who can kick butt, if the duct taped assistant/assassin and tazered another assassin).
Protector of the Nameless: I am not sure how creative or gruesome what happened to Solomon and Vivian is, but I figured the implications worked out well enough. Let's everyone come up with their own filler for what happened behind hte scenes, to give a way a bit.
No one but the four men involved knew what really happened that night, but all it took was two days before the entire city knew at least one thing. The newspapers had the story that was released by the police, but in the end everyone knew of the scandal that took place at the home of Count Solomon Motou. That was how Malik, Yugi, and Ryou were clued in about what happened that night but none of them were asking their lover or husband about the details and they were definitely not asking Vincent about it.
MOTOU SCANDAL! HEIRESS MURDERED!
Police arrested Count Solomon Motou for the murder of Shipping Heiress Vivian Wong, but that was not the end of charges leveled against he once admired man of the people. Investigation into Count Motou's murder case later revealed documentation of all of his attempts to murder or assault prominent members of many opera houses and families. The Opera Populaire was also included in his records, most of the attempts revolving around his own granddaughter— Prima Donna Mai Valentine. The most recent plans, released by the police as an example, revolved around his own grandson Tenor Yugi Motou and ranged from kidnapping and drugging the talented young man to full out imprisoning the boy in one of his many estates with the final option of killing the body in an 'accident' of his devising.
What the article did not say was that Vivian Wong had been found in her rather risqué nightgown, in Solomon's study, stabbed eighteen times with a letter opener from the older man's desk. The old man was found stinking of alcohol, his hands covered in her blood with his prints on the handle of the opener, face flecked with drops, his attire also stained with blood, and the weapon by his feet. His handprints were also on the body, which sealed his fate.
Now the opera house was peaceful and things fell back into their old routine. Rehearsals continued as news of what happened finally died down and before anyone knew a month and half passed and it was now the night before the opening night of Il Muto. Yugi laughed as he sat down to the ritual poker game and the toasting to the upcoming production, seeing Marik had brought a good bottle of wine he had stolen from Solomon's house and a set of eight crystal cups, but someone was absent. "Yami's been missing for two weeks now." Malik commented as Yugi shuffled the cards and Bakura poured the wine.
"It is odd, this is the first time he has disappeared for such a long period of time." Ryou remarked as he passed the glasses out, going as far as to place one where Yami usually sat and the one extra glass that was a bribe for the devil. "I believe he has a good reason, since he doesn't tend to do things he doesn't have to." He added with a smile as Yugi passed the shuffled cards over to Malik, who proceeded to deal them out.
"Seeing Yami is not going to be showing up any time in this next year, it may be best we begin without him." Malik stated, sitting the remainder of the card deck down. "Before that, Yugi… do you know where he is?" the paper-pusher asked with half-lidded eyes and a lazy, almost lecherous, grin that made Yugi want to bolt for the door and go hide under the bed in his room.
"Only the note that came this afternoon." The manager-turned singer admitted nervously as Bakura's eyebrows shot up in surprise and Marik frowned. "I didn't say anything because I figured he told you guys what he was up to." Bakura went to say something sarcastic, but Ryou reached over and slapped a hand over his lover's mouth with a frown.
"It is a valid answer and assumption." Ryou declared in a voice that left no room for argument. "Yami has his moments when he goes off and does something he wants, this could be one of those times despite the length of time he has spent away. You also forget that Yami is an adult and can handle himself, considering how many times he has pulled your drunken ass out of the fire." He finished removing his hand from a now shocked Bakura's mouth while Marik made a show of cleaning his ears.
"Stress?" Yugi asked the violinist with a frown as Ryou smiled cheerfully at the manager-turned singer.
"Probably in more ways than one." Marik muttered under his breath, but clamed up when Ryou turned and glared at him.
"What did Yami's letter read?" Malik asked as he eyed Ryou, who was looking ready to attack both his own lover and Marik for some reason.
"He wished me good luck in my official debut tomorrow and apologized for not being able to make his toast while in our company and wanted me to warn you that he has a big surprise that will be revealed after the production. The last part of the small letter noted that if you guys pass out in public he would never let you live it down." Yugi told them, sticking with an abridged version since the rest of the letter was geared towards Yugi.
"Enough talk." Marik declared drawing all attention to him self as he picked his wine glass up, grinning as the other four followed his example. "A toast to the first official debut of our talented Yugi, may his voice ring true." He continued to say as Yugi blushed.
"A toast to the orchestra, may the brass be bold and the strings taunt and steady and the reeds ready. May their fingers be swift and their ears sharp or I'll stab them in the eye." Bakura stated as the others laughed.
"You stole mine!" Ryou pouted as Bakura smirked, leaning over and ruffling his lover's hair and getting a glare. "May Rebecca be ready because she has a large dress to fill!" he declared as Marik cackled.
"That girl definitely doesn't have the assets Mai hides, damn." The blonde manager whistled as Malik glared at his husband. "What? While Mai's voice is like a chorus of angels, you know that the men in the audience pay to oogle her beautiful Valkayrie-like form!"
"You are assuming Norse myth see Valkyries as statuesque and not overly bulky." Ryou pointed out dryly as Marik glared at the violinist. "The image of her in armor, pigtails, holding a spear is scary."
"I'll pretend this conversation never happened because than I wouldn't have to tell Vincent about the conversation about his lovely wife and my cousin turned sister." Yugi squeaked out, blushing red in embarrassment about the turn the conversation has taken while palming his face, making the rest laugh. As they calmed down Yugi pulled his hand away from his face and raised his glass a bit higher. "A toast to the first performance without a meddling old man and to the beginning of a new era for the Opera Populaire." He stated as they all cheered and than clinked glasses before downing the contents of their first glass quickly and beginning their first game of poker.
The next day was full of energy with triple and quadruple checks, practicing to perfect mistakes in both the ballet corps and orchestra, and by that night everyone was ready for the first performance of Il Muto. The audience was in awe of the new level of perfection achieved by the orchestra and cast, leading to several encores before the parties began. Mai was giddy, despite the fact that this was the last opera she was putting on before her retirement, and had not let Yugi change from his attire as she pulled him through the corridor grinning like a loon and obviously she knew something that no one else did.
That is what led him to the foyer, among the upper-class men and women, in his powdered wig and white make-up and attire that looked like he was a noble from a time before the French Revolution. Many congratulated him on a stunning performance as he made a slow circuit around to the many groups, mostly pushed along the path by a grinning Mai who did her own greetings. "Vincent, darling!" Mai nearly squealed as she greeted her husband, causing Yugi to turn around and watch she hugged the black haired and crimson-eyed man who was grinning. She pulled away from Vincent and grabbed Yugi's arm before the manager-turned-singer could disappear into the crowds and slink away to a quiet place.
"I would like to formally introduce both of you to my older brother." Vincent stated with a nod and motioned for the cloaked man that had been hiding behind him to come forward. "Mai and Yugi my older brother, the true Lord of the Valentine Clan, Yami Valentine." He stated as Yugi's eyes widened as the cloaked figure reached up and pushed the hood back to show tri-colored hair that fell around his shoulders and in to sharp crimson eyes. Yugi was awestruck by the fact that Yami's face was perfect, no blemishes whatsoever and nothing that would distract a person from the sheer intensity of his eyes— a trait that the Valentine brothers seemed to share.
"What?!" two voices shouted in pure shock, causing both Yugi and Yami to turn to the side in time to watch as Bakura and Marik fainted from the shock of the revelation while Malik snickered.
"It is a pleasure to meet such a talented singer." Yami stated as he nodded to Yugi with a grin while Yugi tried not to glare at him, but the manager-turned-singer did promise to get his lover back for this. "I am actually here tonight because both Mr. Kaiba and Mr. Pegasus agreed to hand over full ownership of this opera house to me."
"Really?" Malik asked as he approached the two, noting that Yami's grin did not fade.
"I have been here for so long that I know the workings a bit better than both men and they have decided that they have spread themselves too thin. Instead, they have decided to become patrons." He added with a nod, obviously confident about his declaration. Within the first hour, when both Kaiba and Pegasus arrived they were immediately questioned by nosey socialites and they did agree that Yami's announcement was true.
With a whispered request from Yami and a little patience, Yugi had finally managed to slip away from the festivities after two hours but it had taken him another hour before he felt clean of the cake don make-up and heavy attire. After slipping into a pair of slacks and a baggy tunic he carefully made his way through the party that was still in full swing behind the scenes, the one that the rest of the cast and orchestra and stage crew put into motion after every show, and to a circular staircase made out of wood that led up to the upper floor. When he reached that storage area, going by Yami's simple instructions, he made his way out of a partially open door and on to a snow covered landing that had a rearing horse and horseman in the center and overlooked the circular drive that was in front of the opera house. "Yami?" he asked, wrapping his arms around himself and cursing the fact he forgot to grab a coat in his rush.
"Thank you for not being angry with the fact I kept that secret from you." A familiar voice stated as Yami stepped out from the front of the horseman, his heavy black cloak around his shoulders, and moved towards Yugi. "I did not like keeping such a secret from you." He whispered parting his cloak and pulled a now blushing Yugi into a hug, making sure the young man was as close to him as possible while he used one hand to make sure the cloak was closed around both of them.
"I understood your reason and it would have been hypocritical of me, considering who I was once connected to." The young man stated with a small smile, staring up into Yami's eyes as he carefully brought a hand up to cup Yami's cheek. "I understand your reasons and respect them, considering I owe you so much for keeping Mai safe from everything that Solomon orchestrated." Yami leaned into his lover's touch with a smile of his own.
"After everything I have done, even in the name of justice and protection, I do not deserve such a caring soul… such an angel as you." He muttered, leaning down a bit as Yugi blushed but did not look away from Yami.
"Maybe I am your Angel of Music, sent here to guide you." Yugi cheekily stated as Yami chuckled and leaned down and pressed a kiss to Yugi's lips, which the young man accepted. A few moments later the man that was once the Opera Ghost, the Phantom of the Opera, pulled about an inch away from a now dazed Yugi.
"In that case, my Angel of Music, will you stay with me forever?" he asked as Yugi's eyes widened a bit in surprise before he laughed and nodded with a grin.
"Forever, my Phantom, and than some." Yugi promised and initiated the next kiss just as it began to snow. The white flakes fell around them, but neither really cared because they had finally found true happiness from the lonely lives they had led to this point.
A/N: I did not expect to finish this so late, but this chapter was actually started ten different times in ten different ways and none of them really fit with how to finish it. At first I was going to go into detail with what happened, but than nothing started right or sounded right or even looked right! Than, one day while knitting, this idea hit me so I slept on it... and this chapter was born. It may not be up to standards and it may let some people down, which I apologize for it that is true.