AN: This is the fourth of series of fics I'm calling The Third King. All can be read separately from each other, but they also all tell a story together.
Disclaimers: I don't own Yugioh 5D's.
Pairings: implied Yusei/Crow
Summary: Crow was sure this couldn't be Yusei. Yusei would never be so irrational.
Crow watched the events unfold on television with a heavy heart. If only he'd been there more, had gotten him over Jack, had gone to the city with him whether Black Bird was finished or not. If only, if only...
It wouldn't do any good to think of how things could have been. He didn't know what could have happened to change Yusei so much, though Jack's death might have had something to do with it. Whatever it was, he couldn't be certain that if he had been with Yusei, he could have kept this from happening. If he were honest with himself, he was surprise this hadn't happened when Jack had left.
The television changed to show a picture of the reason for all the destruction. Crow was sure he was Yusei, although he'd changed. The being on the TV wore all white, though his clothes were bloodstained and dirty. His black hair was streaked with red instead of yellow, and his eyes were a cold silver.
He also had a maniacal grin on his face most of the time.
The only time he had seen this Yusei serious was during the duels they showed every hour, but he usually didn't watch those. It was more painful seeing this Yusei duel than seeing the destruction he wrought on the city outside duelling.
Every hour, the news reported more and more deaths caused by real duel monsters. Usually the cause was Yusei's prized Stardust Dragon. Crow had to look away whenever Stardust appeared on the screen as well. To think that such a light dragon was now being used for such destruction.
Not to mention the effect it was having on their other friends. He'd gone to visit their home in Main Satellite, and Rally had run to meet him, crying. The mood in the place was somber, and the TV was on but muted so they wouldn't have to listen to the reports.
Crow was staying with them for now, looking out for them the way Yusei had before. He checked in with his kids every other day to make sure they were doing alright, but most of his time was spent in Main Satellite. Rally slept next to him at night, and followed him around most of the day. Probably to make sure he didn't lose it like Yusei and Jack had.
Right now, he was getting ready to head back to Main Satellite. He was nervous about leaving Rally and the others alone for too long, in case Yusei decided to show up and harm them. But the TV had been on and had caught his attention before he could leave. He'd seen enough, though. He turned to leave.
"Wait! What's this? The Third King is leaving Neo Domino City?"
Crow winced at the name Yusei had given himself and turned to look. The live footage indeed showed Yusei riding Stardust away from Neo Domino. The camera panned around to show his probable destination.
Crow didn't watch anymore. He bolted out of the room, into the sunlit street outside, his eyes immediately focused on the sky. If Yusei really were coming here... No. He wouldn't allow the destruction that had occurred in Neo Domino to happen here. He would stop Yusei before that could happen.
He finally spotted what he'd been looking for: a bright shape in the sky in the direction of Neo Domino. He was sure that was Stardust—nothing else could be so beautiful.
Crow turned to find his kids running toward him, a couple of them looking up at the sky where Stardust was.
"Get out of here!" he ordered, unable to sound as nice as he would have liked. "It isn't safe out here right now!"
"Is it Security?" asked the littlest one.
"Yes, it's Secruity," Crow said, going with it. "And if they find you guys, they'll take you away. So you need to go hide, okay?"
"Big brother said Security can't get over here," said another one.
"That's why you need to hide. They've found a way, and they'll be looking for you," Crow said, praying that they would believe him and leave.
The group stared up at him with wide eyes. Then they all turned and ran back for the buildings in unison. Crow breathed a short sigh of relief before looking back at the bright shape in the sky.
Yusei... Crow shook his head. Are you even Yusei anymore? Is he still in there somewhere, trapped by this darkness that's consumed him?
Crow knew somewhere that the Third King couldn't really be Yusei. Yusei could never commit the crimes Third King had, not willingly. Yet, Crow could still see Yusei in there somewhere. The serious expression Third King had while duelling was Yusei's without a doubt.
The bright shape grew bigger and bigger until he could definitely see that it was Stardust Dragon, instead of just guessing that it was. Faint screams of terror started drifting through the streets as people finally noticed the great monster in the sky. Crow clenched his fists, glaring up at Stardust.
Is this what you want Yusei, Third King? To see us quake in fear?
Stardust finally got close enough that Crow could tell where it was headed. He scowled and crossed his arms as Stardust approached and landed in front of him. Yusei slid off her back and walked over.
Crow hadn't expected to be so affected by the Third King, but as Yusei walked toward him, he found himself back down and taking a step backward. It was hard not to; Yusei wasn't smiling at all, but rarely had Crow seen him so serious. Yusei's cold silver eyes seemed to bore into his skull.
Crow had to look away. He examined Yusei's clothes instead. The man had taken to dressing similarly to Jack, with all white clothes and a long trenchcoat. His clothes were actually clean for once, betraying none of the murders he had committed with his own hand. If it were possible, his stance was even more self-assured than before.
Crow automatically looked back up at Yusei's eyes. They held none of the warmth he was used to seeing, even though his tone was familiar.
"I need to talk to you," Third King said sounding so much like the Yusei he was used to. "Will you listen?"
Crow glanced back behind himself. He didn't see any of his kids, and his doubted they would have hidden in his home. It should be okay.
'Yeah, sure. Come on in."
Yusei nodded and held up a card; Stardust Dragon disappeared. He stuck the card back into his Duel Disk and turned it off.
Crow waited for Yusei to catch up with him before walking with him into the shack. He didn't feel comfortable turning his back on Yusei right now. That saddened him more than anything else.
But Crow didn't feel like he was leading Yusei, or that they were equal as they walked in together. He felt like Yusei was leading him. Yusei had always been leading him, and he knew Crow's place like his own, so it was hard not to fall back into the habit of letting Yusei take the lead.
This is the Third King, Crow reminded himself. You're not on the same side any more. He's a murderer.
Yusei sat on the couch and Crow took the chair across from him. The TV behind him was now going over the crimes Third King had committed over the last week. Yusei's attention had been caught by it and he was grinning as he watched. Crow shuddered and turned it off.
"What did you want to talk about?" Crow asked. Normally, he wouldn't get to the point immediately, but they both knew any small talk right now was inappropriate.
Yusei's grin disappeared and he looked serious again. "Crow, I trust you more than anyone. I know you'd be willing to help me out if I needed it."
"Of course," Crow said out loud. Inside, he was thinking, But only if it's to help you get out of this darkness."
Yusei grinned again, almost like a small child. "Good. I knew I could count on you. Nerve and Blitz wouldn't understand."
I don't understand either, Yusei! "What do you need me to do?"
"I need you to evacuate everyone out of Satellite."
Crow stared at him. "What?"
"I need you to evacuate—"
"No, I heard you." Crow frowned at him, starting to get a cold feeling in his gut. "Why?"
"I don't want anyone to get hurt," Yusei answered, as though it were obvious. "They don't deserve it."
"And the people of Neo Domino have deserved this?" Crow demanded before he could stop himself.
Yusei stared at him seriously. "Yes."
"There's no one from Neo Domino here," Crow said. "Why do I need to evacuate Satellite?"
Third King gained a dreamy look on his face. "I'm going to destroy Satellite in a week."
There was nothing left of Yusei, Crow decided, because Yusei would never do anything like that. Of course, Yusei wouldn't do anything like what Third King had been doing for the past week either.
Third King stood up and started pacing, now looking distracted. "I can't kill Godwin," he said, making a face. "I want to, because he's the reason for everything. If only he would die...but I can't. It won't let me. So I have to make him suffer. Neo Domino City isn't enough. Satellite will be enough."
Crow was almost convinced by that. He knew Yusei; he could almost believe that was why he was doing all this. But there was something about it that didn't ring true.
"Then why do you want to evacuate? Why do you want to destroy Satellite? Godwin doesn't give a shit about us; he wouldn't care."
Crow thought for a moment that he'd managed to convince the Third King. But then Third King's eyes gained a dangerous edge and he knew that had been too much to hope for.
"Satellite is going to be destroyed anyway," Third King said softly. "At least this way the people in it won't be destroyed along with it."
"What do you mean it's already going to be destroyed?"
Third King shook his head and looked down at Crow with determined silver eyes. "Can I trust you to evacuate the city?"
"Yusei, there's no way for anyone to get out of Satellite," Crow said. There was no way this was Yusei. He would have thought of that. He wouldn't be asking something so impossible.
"Can I trust you?"
"And if you destroy Neo Domino, there's nowhere for us to go," Crow added.
Third King shook his head, looking frustrated. "You'll make it work. Can I trust you?"
Crow glared back up at him. "No, you can't. I can't do what you're asking. And I won't assist you in this mindless destruction."
Third King's expression turned sad but no less determined. "Then their deaths will be on your head."
He turned on his heel and walked out. Crow stared after him in shock for a moment before running to follow him.
"Hey, you can't put blame on me!" he yelled. He burst out of the shack. Stardust had already appeared and Third King was already atop her. "What you're asking is impossible! Yusei!"
"At least save yourself, Crow," Third King said, sounding so much like Yusei that Crow was tempted to follow him again. But the silver eyes that looked down at him were cold and were nothing like Yusei's. Crow only glared up at him.
Third King grinned back down at him. He whistled and Stardust rose majestically into the air. Crow glared at them as they flew away.
Crow watched the bright shape of Stardust grow smaller and dimmer until all he could see was a glimmer in the distance. Then he walked back into his shack.
Screams had started on the TV again. Crow muted it without a second thought. He didn't need to hear anymore.
"He's finally gone?"
Crow whipped around, a knife in his hand in an instant. A deep voice chuckled bitterly from the shadow of the doorway to his bedroom.
"Calm down, Crow. I'm here to help," the man said, stepping out into the light.
"You're dead. That's why we're in this mess!" Crow exclaimed.
Jack frowned, though it was more at the fact that Crow had yet to put away his knife than anything. "Obviously I'm not."