Title: Surrendering Fear
Pairing: Yami no YugixYugi
Genre: Romance
Rating: PG-15
Spoilers: The end of Duelist Kingdom
Warnings: Sexual allusions
Summary: The spirit knew he was afraid to love. Yugi would show him there was nothing to be afraid of.
Notes: This was requested by Embyrr922 on LJ, who asked for: "The Grand Seduction. Whether in an existing relationship, or as an attempt to start one. Simple gestures, soft touches, light kisses, all perfectly innocent on the surface, but with such intensity and intent as to make the knees wobble and the heart race."

Edited on 2/26/10


"Mou hitori no boku…you're still up?"

The spirit glanced over his shoulder and saw Yugi shrugging away the bedcovers, pushing himself up against his pillow.

"I'm sorry, did I wake you, Aibou?"

"No." Yugi stretched and peered through the dim room at his other self. "Why are you up? Did you have a bad dream?"

The spirit lowered his head and said, "I can't sleep."

"Oh. Is there something on your mind?"

"No, I meant I physically can't sleep. Ghosts don't sleep, so we don't have bad dreams." He half-turned to face Yugi more easily. "Don't worry, I was just bored so I thought I'd look out the window for awhile."

"Okay," Yugi said. "You seemed awfully withdrawn after the tournament…I thought maybe it was still bothering you."

The spirit smiled. "Thank you, Aibou, for caring. But don't waste time worrying about me. Just because you solved the Puzzle, that doesn't mean you have to put everything in your life on hold to be concerned when I get withdrawn. You really ought to worry about yourself before me."

Yugi frowned slightly. "But you worry about me before yourself all the time."

He hesitated. "Yes, well…I'm a spirit."

"What does that have to do with anything?" Yugi asked, laughing.

"It means I'm not alive; my life is already over. I have nothing to sacrifice by putting you first."

Yugi's laugh died away instantly. He lowered his gaze back to the bed and tried to fight off the sudden tightness in his chest. His life is already over. So just because it means I might take risks, he thinks I'm not allowed to care about him? Is that why he never lets us get close?

"Aibou?" the spirit said, concerned. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing. Nothing's wrong. I um…should get back to sleep." Yugi slid down under the blankets, pulling them over his head and rolling onto his side, his back to the spirit. He heard him sigh quietly, and then the room was silent. After several long moments, Yugi chanced to roll over and peek out. The man's misty form was still there, gazing off into space. Slowly, Yugi slid his hand out, inching it towards the spirit's. Their fingers met, and Yugi's slid straight through his other self's form. The spirit didn't appear to notice. Gloomily, Yugi pulled his arm back to his body and curled in a ball, wondering what would happen if he could touch him. It was the one thing they still hadn't done…they'd learned to communicate, to see each other, even managed to enter the hall between their mind rooms. But they'd never been able to touch.

What if they could? Would that make communication any easier? The spirit kept such a wall up between them, insisting they were different. He said that Yugi should not put himself in danger or take risks, yet was happy to do anything for Yugi. That wasn't fair. Maybe if they could touch, the spirit would realize they weren't so different. Maybe it would make it easier to express the emotions Yugi kept suppressing.

He closed his eyes, and when he opened them again the spirit had vanished. He had probably returned to his soul room. Yugi had only been in there once, when Shadii had explored it. And had almost fallen into a trap–

I was able to touch Shadii's hand!

Yugi sat upright, his heart pounding. That was right…he had been able to pull Shadii to safety inside the spirit's soul room. Things were solid there, not non-corporeal projections. If he could just enter the spirit's room…

But how did he? He had only been there twice, once by complete accident and the other, during their duel with Pegasus, hadn't really been intentional either. He'd only known he needed to talk to the spirit to explain his strategy. Waiting for another 'accident' would be pointless; he would just have to hope that the desire to see his other self now would be enough.

His heart pounding, not knowing what would happen, he closed his eyes and tried to imagine the place between their rooms. At first he saw only the darkness of his closed eyelids and could feel the bed under him. He concentrated harder, and felt an odd sensation, as if his body had broken free of gravity. Lights swam before his closed eyes and misty shapes took form. He struggled not to open his eyes, afraid it would break the tentative connection.

Then the bed fell out from under him.

"Agh!" His eyes flew open, his arms out to catch himself, but there was nowhere to fall to. He was standing on cold stone, surrounded with mist. He waved his arms a few times to clear it, and looked around in fascination. This was it…this was the hallway from before. He recognized the open door on the left as his own mind room. And on the right…

He stared up at the door before him. It looked foreboding, dark and impenetrable. Slowly, Yugi reached up and knocked on the door. Moments later it opened, and his other self, hand on the door, stared at him.

"Hi," Yugi said.

"Aibou? What are you doing here?"

"I um...wanted to talk."

The spirit stepped back, releasing the door. "Oh….do you want to come in?"

Yugi nodded, and stepped inside. The room looked the same as it had the last time he was there, full of stairs and doors, with no discernable pathway. For a moment he felt sorry for the spirit. This room, while mysterious, seemed like such a lonely place.

He heard the door quietly click shut and turned to see the spirit watching him, looking curious.

"Are you okay?" the spirit asked.

"What?"

"Are you…is everything okay? You came here. The last time you were here…"

"Oh, no," Yugi said, "I'm fine. I assume my body is safely in bed in my room."

"That's good. I thought maybe…"

"No, everything is fine."

"Alright." The spirit waited, still looking perplexed. Yugi took a step forward, and took a deep breath at the same time.

"Um…are you sure there's nothing bothering you?" Yugi asked.

"I told you earlier, I'm fine." He shifted his weight and moved one leg to steady himself, putting himself closer to Yugi. He was close enough to reach. Yugi felt his heart thump harder.

"Yeah…that's right, you did tell me," he managed to say.

"Aibou?"

"I…" Yugi looked down at the spirit's hand, resting at his side. Close enough to touch…but what if it didn't work? What if his fingers slid straight through his figure again? How much would the disappointment hurt?

"Aibou, tell me the truth. What's going on? I can tell something is wrong." The spirit took a step closer. His eyes shone with concern. Yugi looked into them, his lips parting.

"I just…need to know," he whispered, and reached out, brushing his fingers against the spirit's hand.

He was real. Not some illusion that felt like nothing more than mist, but flesh and blood. The spirit's body jerked, as if surprised, but he didn't pull his hand away. Yugi ran his fingers over the spirit's, breathless. His skin was cool and soft under his fingertips.

"Aibou?" His voice broke the spell, and Yugi pulled back. He forced his eyes up to meet the spirit's gaze and opened his mouth to apologize, but the words never made it out. The spirit's eyes were filled with questions…but Yugi was distracted from answering and drawn in by their dark beauty.

Without a word, Yugi reached out to touch his face. That single first touch had only unleashed a longing he couldn't stem. Now that he had felt him, had satisfied his need to know if it was possible, he discovered it had been replaced by desperate want.

He wanted to tell him everything, to express all the words he had never been able to say before. He wanted the spirit to realize that "alive" or not, he was loved and that there was nothing wrong with accepting that…

The spirit never broke eye contact, even as Yugi's fingers trailed down his cheek. He took in a shaky breath, slowly lifted his hand, and placed it against Yugi's, holding his hand to his face. His fingers tightened over Yugi's, and Yugi felt him tremble. The expression in his eyes was one of awe, but also fright.

"It's okay," Yugi said, hoping to soothe him. Instead it seemed to shatter the moment again, and the spirit released him and backed away.

"I'm sorry."

"Don't be sorry." Yugi stepped forward. "This was my idea; coming in here was my idea. You did nothing wrong."

"Aibou…you should go…" His voice was higher than normal. Yugi was beginning to understand.

"Don't be scared," he said, vaguely thinking that he had lost all his common sense and feeling rather grateful that he had. Letting pure instinct guide him, he took another step and held out his arms, wrapping them around the spirit's waist and embracing him. Not far away, he felt his heart. Unlike his hands, his body was warm.

"Why not?" his other self asked. Yugi looked up to see his face only inches away. He felt his own breath catch in his throat. He had never been so close to someone before, never been close enough to feel their breath or see their neck pulse, never been close enough to know, somehow, exactly what to do.

"Because I love you," he whispered, tilting his head back and pressing his lips to the spirit's.

The kiss lasted only a few seconds before they broke apart, gasping. The spirit's eyes sought Yugi's, wanting a hint of what this was supposed to mean. Yugi said nothing, only leaned in again, capturing the spirit's lower lip. He felt his mouth close over his, and it was a softer, slower parting than before. He felt his other self's body shift, and felt his arms wrapping around him and pulling him closer. Their bodies seemed to mold and fit each other too well, as Yugi buried his hands in his hair and kissed him harder, probing with his tongue. At first the spirit seemed to resist, then slowly parted his lips and allowed Yugi to taste his sweet, soft flavor. Energy bolted through Yugi's body and he had to fight back a moan of bliss.

Finally his other self seemed to regain control and broke the last, and longest, kiss to say, "What…what are we doing?"

Even if Yugi had an answer to give, he wouldn't have given it. Common sense was long gone, he was controlled by something deeper. Instead, he nuzzled his other self's chest, turning his head to brush his mouth over his throat. The spirit, without thinking, lifted his chin. It was too gentle to be a kiss. Yugi's lips danced between his throat and ear, exploring his neck. His eyelashes fluttered against the underside of his jaw. There was no force, no demand, but the spirit couldn't have moved even if he wanted to, captivated as he was by the sensations. But the euphoria inevitably faded. He wasn't a fool, he knew what Yugi wanted. And as badly as he shared that want, his fear was stronger.

"Aibou, no. Stop."

Yugi stopped, but he didn't let go. He'd spent too long imagining what it would feel like to hold the spirit that he didn't want to release him yet. His other self had almost let down his walls, Yugi could feel it. But if he let go, the chance would be lost forever. The spirit would push him away and never let him get close again.

"Don't," Yugi said. "It'll be alright, I promise."

His other self shook his head. Yugi reached up with one hand to touch his face again, ever so gently, and asked, "What are you afraid of?"

The spirit shifted his weight. Would Yugi laugh, if he knew why he balked at getting too close? "I've never…I haven't…" he whispered.

"Shh." Yugi's fingers slid up his cheek, tucking stray strands of hair from his bangs aside. He didn't laugh, he just smiled, understanding. "Don't worry."

The spirit closed his eyes and leaned into Yugi's hand. Yugi caressed his face as he lowered him to the floor. He could feel the spirit's breath on his hand, and gently ran his fingers over his quivering lips as his other hand trailed down his chest. The spirit's body shook. It felt like there were fire and ice in Yugi's fingers; every place Yugi touched on him seemed to burn and yet sent shivers through him.

Maybe it was nothing more than a moment's surrender, but maybe after tonight nothing would be the same. Deep down he suspected the walls had been too far broken to ever distance himself from his partner again. Either way, Yugi had brought him to this place, had awoken something inside him, and had spoken to him without words.

It was an invitation, a request he couldn't refuse. His body wouldn't let him, his heart wouldn't let him. So he willingly gave in to the gentle hands on his skin, the warmth of the body half-entwined with his, and let himself fall.

x - x - x


Notes: Bit of creative license and a mix of anime and manga storylines in this one, but overall it worked out. I wanted to add more seme!Yugi to the world. =D Also, virgin!Yami is incredibly sweet and cute to me, and there's a severe shortage of fics where he's all shy and uncertain. In addition, I tried to be artsy and use the seduction as a metaphor for tearing away Yami's emotional weakness (aka, his fear of love) that he tries to hide from Yugi. I…might have achieved at least two of those, I'm uncertain if the third came across as well as I wanted it to. Please do share your opinions. This request was quite a challenge (such high expectations), but challenges are good. Hope you enjoyed it!