AN: This inspired by another fic, Teardrop by Dragon Star Queen, and episode 27/28. --giving credit where credit is due.
Agh, curse 5D's! I need to be working on my HP fics, dang it! But JackxYusei is too cute not to write...
Disclaimers: I don't own Yugioh 5D's. And YuseixAki fans should be glad I don't, because I would make that pairing fail miserably. Also, the title is from part three of "Octavarium" by Dream Theater. The whole album and song goes with the theme, but that had the best title.
Pairing: Yusei x Jack
Rating: T (just to play it safe)
Warnings: there is actually slash this time, although it's mild. Also, the time line for this is just after Yusei's duel with Dark Signer #1 in ep 28, before he goes back to what I'm guessing is Himuro's place. So, there are spoilers up to there.
Jack stood at the window, gazing out on the brightly lit city. Even after midnight, the city was alive and bustling. Usually he wouldn't care, as he was usually too far above the city for all the light and sound to bother him. Down here, in the middle of it, he could see clearly what he had lost.
He used to be King over all of this.
Jack's hand clenched automatically before he could stop it. He hissed in pain and quickly relaxed. But the pain only served as another reminder of his loss. He hardly remembered actually losing—the pain and shock of Yusei's attack had been overwhelming—but he knew that he had lost, and he remembered his brief exchange with Yusei before he'd passed out.
"You gave into your pride of trying to be the King."
"Damn it," he hissed, closing his eyes. He knew Yusei was right, deep down, but he didn't want to admit it. That was just another part of his pride of being the King, he supposed. But he couldn't even have that anymore; now it was just his own pride, pride with nothing backing it, making it legitimate. It was foolish now.
He heard the door open and close very carefully, but paid it no mind. It was probably a nurse checking on him without wanting to wake him. He would be scolded for being out of bed, but he didn't care.
"You shouldn't be out of bed."
Jack's eyes narrowed and focused on the reflection in the window. Not a nurse then.
"You shouldn't be in here," he countered. "I'm fairly certain it says 'No Visitors' outside."
Yusei's reflected eyes bored into Jack's own. "Do you want me to leave?"
Jack was silent for a long time. It was difficult to get the word out. "No."
Yusei nodded and walked over to him. He stopped next to Jack and looked out on the city as well. Jack wondered what he thought of the city and all its constant activity. Satellite, as he remembered it, had been dark and silent at night with only Security patrolling the streets after sundown.
"Why are you here?" Jack asked after several long minutes of silence.
"I wanted to make sure you were alright," Yusei answered, not looking at him. Jack wondered how he could say that with such a straight face. Then again, this was Yusei; he had rarely, if ever, seen Yusei smile, even two years ago, before Jack had given him a reason to never smile again.
Yusei looked at him then, a hint of incredulity in his eyes and his voice. "You're still my friend, Jack. And I put you here. I would feel guilty if didn't come see how you were doing." Yusei shrugged and looked away again. "I came by earlier, but I couldn't get in with people around."
Jack stared at him. How could Yusei still consider him a friend? After Jack had stolen his first D-Wheel and Stardust Dragon, he had expected Yusei to hate him. Especially considering what Jack had done to get the D-Wheel and the card...
Yusei grabbed his arm suddenly, gently enough not to hurt but firm enough to keep him standing. It was than that he realized he'd been swaying on his feet and his legs were starting to feel weak—he probably would have fallen if Yusei hadn't caught him.
"You need to lie down," Yusei said, worry tainting his voice. Jack scowled and tugged his arm out of Yusei's grasp, leaning against the window instead.
Yusei frowned at him, but didn't say anything. Instead, he turned away and walked out of Jack's sight. Jack turned his attention to the reflection of the room in the window and saw Yusei sit down on the bed. For the first time he noticed Yusei's breathing was shallower than usual, and his face was scratched up. It reminded him of how Yusei had been after his duel with Izayoi.
"Is it wise to be duelling so soon after becoming King?" Jack asked. Yusei tensed, his stare becoming curious instead of annoyed and concerned.
"I shouldn't have to care anymore, should I?" Yusei said, his tone turning slightly bitter. "If I'm the King..."
"I was changing the future."
Jack sighed and turned his focus back on the street outside. Of course, Yusei's immediate action would be to prevent what they had seen in their duel. He, Jack, personally did not feel it would be such a loss if Satellite were destroyed, as long as everyone in it could get out beforehand. Satellite was a dark mark on the landscape, an embarrassing smudge on Neo Domino's success. But the people in it were not.
"I don't want this."
Jack focused on the reflection again. Yusei wasn't looking at him; his gaze was on his right arm, where his Jacket and glove covered his birthmark. But Jack had a feeling that wasn't what Yusei was talking about, although he probably didn't want that either.
"This title. I don't want it; I don't need it. I have what I came for that I could get." Yusei shook his head and looked back up, though it was out the window and not at him. "But I know you won't take it back without beating me."
Jack was struck by the odd vulnerability Yusei was showing him. Maybe he had changed in two years, but the Yusei he knew would rarely talk about his feelings like this, and then only if he was sure he wouldn't be overheard and they wouldn't have to talk about it again. This was definitely something they might have to talk about again.
Then the first part caught up to his brain and he frowned in confusion. He'd thought Yusei had come to get Stardust back and then stayed to free Rally and the others. He had both now.
"What did you come for that you haven't gotten yet?" Jack asked, wondering if Yusei would answer at all.
Yusei didn't for a minute. He looked like he wished he had never mentioned it at all, as if he was embarrassed by the answer. Jack almost told him to forget it, he didn't have to say anything.
"I wanted your friendship again."
Jack whirled around, having to lean back against the window to keep from falling from how dizzy that made him. Yusei wasn't looking at him or the window, but his tone had been as sure as ever. It was what he'd said that shocked Jack, as much as his earlier comment of friendship had.
"But of course I know that you don't want my friendship anymore," Yusei continued, still sounding assured—and emotionless. "I knew it when you left. I picked my friend over my future, not you."
Jack frowned; he was sure he hadn't meant himself when he'd made that comment. That Yusei had taken it that way interested him. Cautiously, he steadied himself on his feet and walked over to stand in front of Yusei.
"I lead you to your future," Jack said softly. Yusei looked up at him in confusion. Jack didn't blame him; he wasn't entirely sure himself what he was saying, but he knew it was true. Truer than his accusation that Godwin had used him to lure Yusei here, anyway.
"I got us both here, into Neo Domino City," Jack continued. "I came first, and you followed, as I knew you would. It took longer than we thought, but here we are, both free to wander as we please. And I'm sure you could get the others into Neo Domino as well, if you tried."
Yusei continued to stare at him, though now it was more of a studying stare than a questioning one. Jack tried not to squirm under the scrutiny. Yusei almost seemed like he could look at his very soul, and Jack didn't want to know what would be found there. Idiocy, probably. He had been an idiot two years ago. Yusei had always been the smarter of the two of them.
Suddenly, Yusei stood up. Jack had stopped so close to him that they were almost touching now, but he refused to move, to show how uncomfortable he was. If Yusei wouldn't back down, neither would he.
Yusei reached out and touched his cheek. Jack almost winced in anticipation of pain, but Yusei's touch wasn't firm enough to hurt his bruises. Yusei stared at him for another moment, then leaned up and brought their lips together.
Jack was too shocked to move. Had anyone told him that this might happen, he would have laughed at them and then gone to get Yusei to make him say it wouldn't happen himself. But it didn't feel wrong, just unexpected. Yusei...well, Yusei was the type to make the first move in a relationship...and the type to not care what gender he was with...
Finally, he reached out and grabbed Yusei's other hand despite the shards of pain that shot up his arm. Yusei pressed closer for a moment before pulling away, a faint smile on his lips. Jack had missed that smile.
"You need to get some rest," Yusei said, gently squeezing Jack's hand and reminding him just how hurt he'd gotten in that duel.
"I'll visit again, if you want me," Yusei said, taking his hand from jack's cheek. Jack stared at it for a moment; he'd forgotten it was there.
"I'll make sure the nurses know to let you in," Jack said, turning his gaze back on Yusei's face. Yusei nodded, let go of Jack's hand, and slid out from between Jack and the bed. Jack had to sit down almost immediately. He'd been using Yusei for balance without realizing it. He really did need to get some rest.
"When?" Jack asked as Yusei walked to the door.
"Whenever I can," Yusei answered. He offered Jack another brief smile before silently opening the door and slipping out of the door.
Jack stared at the door for a moment before he moved again, not to lie down and go to sleep, but to grab the phone on his bedside table. He would call the nurses' station first, to make sure Yusei could go in and out of his room without opposition. Then he would call Godwin and let the man know that Yusei would be sharing his flat from now on.