"What? Why do I have to spend all evening "babysitting" Mokuba Kaiba just because you and Seto are dating," whined Serenity, who was spending the first weekend over at her big brother's apartment in at least three months. Needless to say, she was quite disappointed that on her first day there, instead of hanging out with her brother, he had a date with his boyfriend while she was stuck having to hang out with the boyfriend's fourteen year-old brother.
"Serenity," said Joey, who was sitting down on the plain tan couch, looked her directly in the eye to show her that he was extremely serious and not to argue with him. "Look, I am sorry but my and Seto's anniversary is tonight and he has had this surprise planned for weeks and I do not want you to be here by yourself until one o'clock in the morning. Seto feels the same way about leaving Mokuba at his house. So tonight, you will have to figure out a way for you to enjoy yourself; maybe watch a couple movies or something. I'll check in around ten," Joey finished. He craned his head to look up at the worn clock to see if he needed to be getting ready for his date with Seto. Joey stood up and headed to the bathroom to take a shower, leaving his sister alone with her thoughts.
An hour or so later the doorbell rang. Joey stood up from the small couch he'd been reclining on to open the door since Serenity was in the spare bedroom putting her clothes away. Seto and Mokuba stepped inside when Joey opened the door to his apartment.
"Are you ready to go, puppy, or do you need more time," asked Seto once he and Mokuba were in the living room of the apartment, which was painted a sunny yellow with white trim to complement it.
"Nope, since my boyfriend refuses to tell me where we are going in attempt to surprise me. He will just have to settle for me being under dressed if we are going somewhere that I need to dress up for," Joey teased, poking Seto lightly in the ribs.
"Serenity, Mokuba is here and Seto and I are leaving," the only blond declared, his voice echoing through out the small but comfortable apartment. Then, he and Seto left the apartment and Mokuba made himself comfortable on the couch. It was ten minutes later that Serenity left the spare bedroom after she unpacked and came into the living room. Once Serenity was in the living room, she spotted someone she could barely recognize setting on the couch.
"Mokuba!" Serenity exclaimed. Her eyes widened in how he was taller than her and had developed some well-toned muscles.
"Yes," he answered, tongue clicking in annoyance at the abrupt loud noise until he saw how her new, short reddish-brown hair showed off eyes that were as green as the first blades of grass in the spring. Mokuba, shocked by how cute the young woman was, attempted to stand to greet her but was too quick and lost his balance, falling off the couch instead. "Ouch." He rubbed his back, which had landed on the hard wood floor of the living room. "Sorry," Mokuba mumbled as he got off the floor. "I guess you could say I fell for you," he suggested with a laugh of embarrassment, gracefully moving toward a dark brown chair so that she could have the couch. Serenity laughed at his joke and made her way to sit on the couch, once she picked up the remote that had fallen out of Mokuba's hands when he fell off the couch.
Once she was sitting on the couch, she flipped on the television and hunted through all her favorite channels in hopes of finding something to watch. "Man," she exclaimed in frustration, "there is nothing on tonight." Her expression changed after a moment, her face lighting up at the thought of what she and her guest could do tonight. "Hey… Want to find out what our brothers do when they go on dates?" Mokuba, who was seated in the chair just opposite the couch, froze like a deer in front of headlights as he thought about what Seto would do to them – or more particularly, to him – if he found out Mokuba had been spying on him.
He turned his face around as quickly as possible from the television to Serenity to explain (nicely) just why that was an extremely bad idea, but then he took a look at her face. Her eyes were so bright and shiny in anticipation and her lips in a full-on puppy-dog pout. Chuckling in bemusement, he thought to himself, Damn, who would have thought the puppy-dog pout that I used on Seto would be used on me; it must be a Kaiba curse. "Okaaaay," he sighed, getting up from the chair, but he stopped in the middle and a huge smile spread on his face, causing him to look like he owned every capsule monster in the world. "How are we going to follow them on foot with a thirty minute head start?" he questioned her, his eyes locking with hers in silent triumph.
"Well…" Serenity's eyes stared back directly into the other's eyes, meeting his smile with one of her own, "we take Joey's car, of course. I earned my license last month and have been dying to put it to good use." She paused. "You do know where they are going?" she asked, raising her eyebrow for added emphasis. Mokuba mumbled a yes and averted his gaze away from her eyes and onto the floor as he resigned himself to his fate, with the small hope the two of them wouldn't get caught.
Serenity and Mokuba stepped into Joey's second-hand Impala and took off after finding Joey's keys on the hook inside the hall closet. They drove for quite awhile until they reached Mount Takeo, where Mokuba said they would be. Serenity steered the beater car into a parking spot where it wouldn't easily be seen and they got out. Mokuba took the lead with Serenity following until a little ways down she spotted her brother and Seto. Looking around she was mesmerized by the setting. Mokuba noticed her surprise and pulled her down on the grass and watch what was taking place.
"What is this," she uttered in amazement, her voice almost drowned out by all the cheering.
"This is a fire-walking ceremony," answering her rhetorical question. "This event is tradition that Yamabushi monks do every year. They first meditate for several hours then do a fire dance, which is what you're watching right now. The final part," a look at his digital watch, "which starts in twelve minutes, is where they do a hot walk," he finished. "I guess you didn't have things like this anywhere by your hometown?" Serenity nodded her head in response to Mokuba's question, never taking her eyes off the performers.
"Let's move closer," she urged, her voice pleading. The ceremony was interesting and a completely new kind of experience, and she wanted a closer look. Mokuba was hesitant to become easier to be spotted by Joey or Seto, but understood Serenity's desire to be up close – he still remembered his first time here.
"Okay," he remarked and grabbed her hand as they stood and moved into a spot that was out of sight of his brother and Joey but still has a better view of the fire dance. From that viewpoint, Mokuba finally noticed Joey was sitting on his brother's lap and was running his fingers through his brother's hair vigorously. Seto, however, gazed into Joey eyes with an intense passion. When the person in charge asked if any in the audience would like to try the hot walk, he watched as Joey excitedly clambered off Seto's lap and raised his hand as high in the air as it could go.
Oh boy this is going to get interesting, Mokuba thought as he took a look aside at Serenity, who was nervously biting her nails. Joey was stepping up to the hot coals for the hot walk with a furious look of determination. "Serenity," Mokuba spoke just loud enough to be heard, "if it makes you that uncomfortable, we should just leave." He turned to face her but she had already made her way toward Joey and Seto. We are in big trouble, was Mokuba's first thought. It was soon followed by the thought, I should have made out a will. Joey was already on the hot coals when he saw Serenity. Surprised, he tripped and face-planted into the coal.
"OWWW!" Joey shouted, hurriedly getting up from the smoldering coals. Mokuba could see his face was really pink but not burned. Seto ran to his date's side immediately. The younger siblings both made their way through the rest of the crowd over to them in case they needed help.
"Well," Seto demanded in a tone that had his brother shaking in his shoes, "you better have an excellent explanation for this." Mokuba looked Seto square in the eye and told him the truth: he was a victim to the puppy dog eyes. Seto listened, and when the younger Kaiba finished his sentence, his lips were curved upwards into a smile (or at least as close to one as he would allow himself). Seto ended the conversation by directing Mokuba to take Serenity back to the apartment and stay there while he took her clumsy idiot of a brother to a doctor to ensure he was alright.
Mokuba grabbed Serenity's hand on his left and pulled her towards the car. Once in the car, he repeated what his older brother had told him. Serenity nodded her head, turned the key in the ignition, and both traveled home in complete silence.
They parked the car and entered the apartment in silence, too. Serenity went to the spare bedroom to be alone, or so the dark brunet presumed from her mood. Mokuba went to the couch and tried to get comfortable. That was when he heard the sound of gut wrenching sobs. He immediately got off the couch and crossed into the spare bedroom, where he found Serenity crying. He sat down on the bed and patted her shoulder in a comforting manner. When Serenity realized Mokuba was there she threw her arms around him with no hesitation. Mokuba got her to stand up with him and guided her to the couch and pulled her onto it.
"What is wrong?" he asked in caring earnest.
"I got Joey hurt because of my stupid curiosity. If it was not for me, he wouldn't have been hurt." She sniffled.
"You know Joey going to be fine right?" She nodded and replied that it still didn't change the fact that he got hurt because of her. "No," I declared taking her in my arms, "knowing Joey, he would been hurt whether you were there or not."
"Thanks, Mokuba," she said. "You are a really nice guy." She leaned forward, kissing him square on the lips. It was like a lightning bolt struck Mokuba. He put his arms around her shoulders, pulling them closer together.
"Honey, I'm… What the hell is going on," said Joey as he stepped through the door and into the living room.
"Joey!" Serenity leapt up and firmly hugged him, interrupting the awkward moment. Not that that was her intent; she was just very relieved at seeing her brother home and well.
"Whoa! What's wrong, Serenity?" With a furtive glance at his boyfriend and the stare he was giving younger brother, he added, "C'mon, we'll chat in your bedroom."
Soon as they left, the older Kaiba dived in. "What were you two doing?" Seto asked.
"Serenity was upset about Joey getting hurt, I tried to comfort her and then she kissed me."
"Okay," Seto replied then set down the couch next to his brother.
"What?" Mokuba responded, nonplussed. "Why aren't you mad?"
"You're kidding right? If I had a nickel for every stupid thing Joey has gotten me to do since we started dating, my company would expanded to twice its size," Seto finished, affectionately rubbing his younger brother hair. "It's the curse of Kaiba and there no escape from it," he smirked.
Mokuba thought about everything his brother had said and let it all sink, and once it did he fainted dead away and didn't come to until several hours later the next day.