Disclaimer – I do not own Yu-Gi-Oh! or Cryin' by Aerosmith

*Rated M for Mature

Summary: Joey turns to Kaiba for help, albeit unintentionally, and a job: Testing a new virtual gaming system. But something goes horribly wrong. Can Kaiba fix it? Or rather, fix Joey?

Chapter 1 – Cryin'

It was Friday morning. Too early for anyone to be at school yet, but one certain blond individual was.

Joey sat silently in the empty classroom and stared blankly out the window. Salty tears trickled down his cut and bruised face, stinging his recent wounds. His tears seemed to fall in time with the light rain that trickled down the blurred windowpane. Rubbing his eyes vigorously, Joey sniffed and hugged himself in an attempt to warm his chilled body.

Yesterday had been one of the worst in his life. His boss claimed that she had to release him because she couldn't afford to keep him on due to the bad economy. Shocked that he'd lost his job, he then got scared when he realized he had to tell his father.

When he'd gone back to the apartment he shared with the drunk of a man, his father confronted him almost immediately. He demanded to know what he was doing home. He was supposed to be at work earning money for his booze. Of course, his father didn't say that, but it was implied. Joey told him that he'd lost his job. And this news just sent the old man over the edge.

He went into a rage. His father had beaten him good that time, leaving him barely conscious on the living room floor.

And then he'd kicked him out, telling him he was never allowed to come back. He wouldn't even let Joey get his things.

So the blond just went into the pouring rain in search of shelter.

He'd been like that for the rest of the night. Wet, cold, tired, and hungry. He could feel himself getting sick now.

There was a time
When I was so broken hearted
Love wasn't much of a friend of mine
The tables have turned, yeah
Cause me and them ways have parted
That kind of love was the killin' kind
Now listen
All I want is someone I can't resist
I know all I need to know by the way that I got kissed

Joey sniffed again, pulling his knees up to his chest, wrapping his numb arms around them. He rested his chin atop his knees and shivered. Closing his eyes, Joey started to doze off.

He snapped out of his drowsy state when he heard a loud noise behind him. Joey weakly turned his head, merely to see the one and only Seto Kaiba staring at him.

"You're here early, Mutt," Kaiba commented. "Did you get kicked out of the kennel early today?" He smirked at his joke. But Joey didn't respond; he just stared at Kaiba. It unnerved him slightly. "Mutt?"

Still no response. Although he was concerned, Kaiba didn't show it. He swiftly approached Joey. "Mutt?" he called again. "Why won't you say anything?"

"What's there to say?" Joey answered hoarsely.

This took Kaiba by surprise. Upon closer inspection of Joey's face, he noticed a large bruise around his left eye, along with numerous cuts. They looked recent. His eyes were also red and puffy, like he'd been crying. And he looked…pale. There was also a little puddle of water around the chair Joey was sitting in.

"You're soaking wet, Mutt. Go to the bathroom and dry yourself off," ordered Kaiba. When the blond made no signs of moving, he reached out and grabbed one of his arms, only to have Joey hiss out in pain as he desperately tried to pull his arm back.

Kaiba froze.

"Just leave me alone," Joey said, barely audible. He tried to move away from Kaiba. Slipping off his chair, the blond braced himself for the imminent impact of the hard tiled floor, but it never came.

Joey hesitantly opened his eyes. Kaiba was gently holding him by the arms. But he couldn't feel him. Was he that numb from the cold? Joey shivered again, consciousness fading.

Kaiba felt him shiver and panicked when he felt the blond go limp. "Mutt? Wake up," he hissed, shaking Joey lightly. There was no reaction. "Mutt?" Kaiba sighed, pulling out his cell phone while he kept Joey steady.

"Hello? Yes. I need you to come back and get me," Kaiba told his limo driver. Hanging up his cell, Kaiba lifted Joey bridal style, astounded that he felt so light. "Come on, Puppy. Let's get you cleaned up," he muttered, quickly leaving the classroom and heading out the front doors of the school. His eyes panned the front of the schoolyard and he noticed that his limo was already there.

Going through the opened door, Kaiba gracefully slid in with Joey still in his arms. "Take me home," Kaiba called to his driver. The driver nodded and went to his seat, preparing to take his boss to the Kaiba Mansion.

I was cryin' when I met you
Now I'm tryin' to forget you
Love is sweet misery
I was cryin' just to get you
Now I'm dyin' cause I let you
Do what you do - down on me

When Kaiba felt the limo move, he looked down at Joey and felt a tiny pang in his chest. What happened to you, Puppy? Who did this to you? Don't worry. I'll take care of you…whether you want me to or not. Kaiba inwardly smirked, growing amused with the apparent challenge he had ahead of him.

His arms tightened protectively around Joey when he heard him whimper, inching closer to the CEO's chest.

Joey abruptly woke with a start. Where was he? He looked up, his startled amber eyes meeting Kaiba's concerned blue ones. "Kaiba?" he said roughly. His throat hurt. Swallowing difficulty, he asked, "Where am I?"

"You're in my limo. You passed out. I'm taking you to my mansion," he replied in a neutral voice.

"Why?" Joey said. It really hurt to talk.

"A Master should really take care of his Puppy," Kaiba answered with a smirk.

"Not…a…dog," he strained out.

"Try not to talk right now. You're really weak. But I'll take care of that soon enough," Kaiba said, allowing Joey to sit up. He moved Joey next to him. "How are you feeling?"

Joey held his head in his hands. "Dizzy…cold." He shivered again. "So cold," he murmured.

Now there's not even breathin' room
Between pleasure and pain
Yeah you cry when we're makin' love
Must be one and the same

"Mr. Kaiba? We've arrived," announced the driver.

Kaiba turned to Joey. "We're here. Do you think you can walk?" he asked, stepping out of the limo and beckoning the blond to follow him.

Joey slid across the seat and put his feet on the wet ground outside the limo. He tried to lift himself up but was too weak to do so. Joey looked feebly at Kaiba.


"It's all right. I've got you," Kaiba said, scooping Joey up in his arms. He blushed lightly while Kaiba carried him. They entered the mansion with the blond gawking at everything in sight.

"Like what you see, Puppy?" he asked, amused.

"It's…really nice," he mumbled. Joey frowned when Kaiba entered a bedroom and placed him on a bed. The room was blue, which could only mean one thing: this was Kaiba's bedroom.

"Um…Kaiba? What-?"

"I'll be right back, Pup," Kaiba interrupted, going through an open door adjacent to his room. It looked like a bathroom. Joey took the opportunity to look around. The bed he sat on had blue silk sheets and a dark blue comforter with a large Blue-Eyes White Dragon on it. There was even a Blue-Eyes mural on one of the walls. A large desk rested underneath a large bay window that seemed to overlook the mansion's garden. Papers were filed neatly on the desk and he also noticed a few framed photographs of Kaiba and Mokuba on the bedside table.

He heard Kaiba return and jerked when he felt strong fingers trying to unbutton his school jacket. Joey's hands shot out to stop them.

"What're yya doin'?" Joey asked, alarm clearly lacing his voice.

Kaiba sighed in irritation. "You need to get out of these wet clothes. And in your current state I highly doubt that you can manage it by yourself. Now, will you let me help you?"

He stared at him for a minute until Joey reluctantly nodded his head, giving Kaiba his approval. The brunet finished unbuttoning his jacket and pulled it off. Next he moved onto Joey's shirt. The blond looked off to the side as Kaiba unbuttoned that, too.

He inhaled sharply when he felt Kaiba gently touch the bruises on his chest, but the brunet didn't say anything. Instead, he tried to make eye contact with Joey, but he had his gaze focused elsewhere. Pulling Joey's shirt off, Kaiba took one of the big towels he brought with him and gently started drying his upper body off. He wrapped the towel around the blond's shoulders when he was done.

Next, Kaiba moved on to Joey's feet. He removed the blond's shoes and socks and placed them off to the side. Reaching for Joey's pants, he hesitated. "Do…you want to take a bath? You can warm up quicker that way."

Joey brought his attention to Kaiba again. "Okay," he muttered slowly. Kaiba got up and went into the bathroom. The blond could hear him turning on the faucet, filling the tub with water. When he came back, Kaiba carried a large, fluffy blue robe.

"You can finish undressing and put this on. I'll check on the bath," Kaiba said quickly, leaving the room.

Joey looked down at the robe Kaiba had left on the bed. Pulling the towel off his shoulders, the blond shakily took his pants and boxers off, leaving them on the floor. He put on the robe, sighing at its comfort.

"Are you done? Your bath is ready," the brunet announced, gradually coming back into the room. Joey nodded as he tried to stand. Kaiba rushed to his side when he started to wobble. "Come on."

Kaiba led him to the bathroom bit by bit. Joey stopped abruptly, taking in the sight of the magnificent bathroom in awe. "Wow."

"I'm glad you like it. Now let's get you warmed up," Kaiba said, guiding Joey to the tub.

"A bubble bath?" the blond inquired, raising an eyebrow at the CEO.

"What?" Kaiba exclaimed, blushing. "If you need my help, I highly doubt you want me seeing your…package while I'm doing so! This was all I could think of!"

That was actually…thoughtful. Embarrassin'…but thoughtful. But there is no way in hell he's helpin' me bathe myself, Joey thought.

Kaiba helped Joey step into the tub. "Hot," he hissed.

"It just feels hot because you're so cold. Take your time," Kaiba assured him.

As Joey lowered himself, Kaiba pulled the robe off him. He didn't see a thing, much to Joey's relief.

"I can do this myself ya know," Joey stated when Kaiba just stood there.

The brunet snapped out of his stupor. "Okay. I'll be in my room. Call me when you're finished." And with that, Kaiba left the blond to himself.

It's down on me
Yeah I got to tell you one thing
It's been on my mind
Girl I gotta say
We're partners in crime
You got that certain something
What you give to me
Takes my breath away
Now the word out on the street
Is the devil's in your kiss
If our love goes up in flames
It's a fire I can't resist

Joey slowly and gently washed himself, gasping and hissing every now and then when soap landed in a wound. Rinsing himself off, Joey grabbed one of the large towels Kaiba had left him. He placed it on the edge of the tub. Carefully lifting himself up, he sat on the edge of the tub. Grabbing the other big towel, Joey started drying himself off. As he wrapped the towel securely around himself, he let the water out of the tub.

"Puppy?" Joey jumped at the sound, almost falling off the edge of the tub, but Kaiba caught him.

"I told you to call me when you were done," the brunet said firmly. "You could have hurt yourself."

"Sorry. I thought I could…" Joey trailed off and looked at the floor.

Kaiba didn't know what to make of him at the moment. He was acting so…passive…timid.

"Um…here are some clothes you can wear for now," continued Kaiba, offering Joey a pile of clothes, which included a pair of boxers. "Get dressed."

"Turn around," Joey insisted. Kaiba sighed and turned his back on him, crossing his arms in the process.

Joey pulled on the red boxers. They were silky and comfortable. He put on the pair of soft black cotton pants next, as well as a warm black sweater and white wool socks.

"I'm done," the blond announced. Kaiba turned around and helped Joey back to his room. He pulled back the covers of his bed and told him to get in.

Joey hesitated for a moment, but he was just so tired. He crawled into the bed and watched in astonishment as Kaiba tucked him in. He even fluffed the pillows so that Joey could sit up.

"Why are ya doin' this? Why are ya helpin' me?" Joey asked softly.

"I'm doing this because I want to. Remember, Masters take care of their Puppies. And it doesn't look like this Master has been doing a very good job at taking care of his Puppy." Kaiba sat on the bed next to Joey. "What happened?" Kaiba asked gently. The blond just seemed to fade out. "Joey. Please tell me?"

Joey whipped his head, shocked that Kaiba had said both his name and please. "Y-Yesterday…I lost my job. When I told m-my d-dad…he got re-really mad." At this a tear ran down Joey's cheek. "He started hittin' me. I-I couldn't stop him. Then he kicked me out and told me to never come back. H-He wouldn't even l-let me get any of m-my th-things," Joey finished.

He wasn't too sure how Kaiba would react to him being so weak in his presence; it couldn't be good. Boy, was he wrong.

"Oh, Puppy," Kaiba sighed, wrapping his arms around Joey gently, feeling him tremble from his contained sobs. "Just let it all out." The blond let loose and cried harder than he ever had before at the kind and unexpected action from the brunet.

I was cryin' when I met you
Now I'm tryin' to forget you
Your love is sweet misery
I was cryin' just to get you
Now I'm dyin' cause I let you
Do what you do to me

It felt like an hour before Joey finally stopped crying. Where'd he dredge up all these tears, anyhow? He's got to be thirsty after this. "Hey. Are you hungry? I'll go and get you something to eat," Kaiba offered.

"Okay," Joey replied softly, patting his eyes dry.

"I'll be right back," Kaiba said, getting off the bed. He ruffled Joey's glossy blond hair in the process.

The blond blushed when Kaiba finally left the room. Letting out his breath, he collapsed on the bed, pulling a big, cushy pillow to his chest. He squeezed it and breathed in. It smells like Seto. Wait…Seto? Since when do I call him that?

Joey fought with his thoughts until he heard Kaiba return. He held a tray filled with all sorts of things. The blond sat up again and watched as the brunet placed the tray of food in front of him. He sat down on the bed next to Joey, making himself comfortable.

"I didn't know what you liked, so I just put together whatever I could think of," Kaiba started sheepishly.

Joey looked at the tray before him. There was apple juice, milk, a bowl of warm chicken noodle soup, a turkey sandwich, crackers, toast with butter, yogurt, carrot sticks, and diced peaches. Hesitantly, the blond reached for the spoon and tasted the soup. It was delicious. In a matter of seconds, he'd downed the bowl. He was so hungry. When was the last time he'd had a decent meal?

Joey grabbed the sandwich and took a bite. His mouth watered. He devoured everything hungrily, leaving nothing untouched. Feeling completely full for once, Joey leaned back and sighed in content. "That was really good." He turned to look at Kaiba, only to find an odd expression on his face. "What?" the blond asked unsurely.

Kaiba's eyes narrowed. "When was the last time you had something to eat? You ate like you were starving."

The last time he ate? "I…I think it was…Wednesday at lunch," Joey answered quietly.

"How often do you get to eat? How many meals do you eat a day?" Kaiba stated, unexpectedly more concerned for Joey's health.

"Um…o-one…two…if I'm lucky." Joey started wringing his hands.

Kaiba took the tray away and put it on the floor. He got under the covers with Joey and pulled him into his arms. "Well that's going to stop. You're staying here from now on."

"No," Joey said, pushing Kaiba away. "I can't put ya out-"

"You're not putting me out, Puppy. There's plenty of room here for you and I'm sure Mokuba won't mind. Besides, I do have the money to spend on you."

"B-But…it doesn't feel right," Joey persisted. "And besides…ya hate me."

"I don't hate you, Puppy. In fact, it's quite the opposite," he said as he brushed Joey's hair out of his face tenderly. Kaiba knew what he meant, though. Joey didn't want to be given everything on a silver platter for nothing. "Would you like to work for me then? Just think of it as a way to pay me back, if you will."

Joey thought about it for a moment and nodded in compliance. "Okay. But what will I be doin'?"

"I'll figure something out," Kaiba muttered, pulling Joey back into his arms. He leaned back against the pillows and stroked Joey's hair lightly. "Now get some sleep. I'll be right here, so you can relax. Okay? I'm right here. You don't have to worry about anything anymore."

Joey nodded tiredly. "So…ya don't hate me?" he asked quietly.

"No. I don't hate you."

Joey smiled sweetly, letting his eyes drift closed. "Good…because I…don't hate ya…either," he said between yawns.

Kaiba smiled when he felt Joey relax against him, his head nestled on his chest. He continued stroking Joey's hair, even when he heard the blond snoring softly. Becoming drowsy himself, the brunet soon fell asleep as well.

Cause what you got inside
Ain't where your love should stay
Yeah, our love, sweet love, ain't love
If you give your heart away

"Seto? I'm home!" called Mokuba. "Seto?" Curious, the young boy headed for his brother's room and knocked. When there wasn't an answer, he opened it and peeked inside. He was shocked to see his brother sleeping, but even more so when he noticed Joey in his brother's bed. Stepping quietly into the room, he approached them and poked his brother in the arm.

Groggily opening his eyes, he nearly jumped out of his skin when he saw Mokuba peering at him. "Mokuba? What time is it?"

"Four in the afternoon. What's Joey doing here?" he whispered, looking at the blond. His eyes widened when he saw Joey's face. "What happened to him?" Mokuba asked a little too loudly.

"Shh," Kaiba hissed, glancing at Joey, but he was still sound asleep. "I found him early this morning in our classroom. He was dripping wet and shivering. He passed out so I brought him here to clean him up. It turns out he lost his job. His father wasn't too pleased with that, so he beat him and kicked him out. That man wouldn't even let him take his things," he spat out. "He'll be staying with us from now on. Is that all right with you?"

Mokuba looked flabbergasted. "Of course it's all right with me. But why are you-?" He smirked when he seemed to realize something. "Oh, I know. You like him, don't you?" he said mischievously.

A bright red blush erupted on Kaiba's face at Mokuba's deduction. "Shut up," was his clever response. He jerked when he felt Joey move.

"Kaiba?" The blond sat up and stretched.

"Hey. How are you feeling, Puppy?"

"Better. A lot better. Oh. Hi, Mokuba. I…hope ya don't mind me…stayin' here," Joey stated awkwardly.

"It's fine, Joey. I'm glad you're staying here. Are you hungry?"

At this, Joey's stomach growled loudly. Embarrassed, the blond bit his lip. "Um…"

Mokuba laughed. "Okay. Seto? Can we order a few pizzas and watch a movie while we eat?"

"Sure." The younger Kaiba cheered and ran out of the room to order pizza. "Obviously, you'll be joining us. Do you need help getting downstairs?"

"I don't think so. Let me use the bathroom first and then we'll go down," Joey replied, getting up from the bed slowly and heading into the bathroom. Kaiba took that time to change out of his school clothes and into something more comfortable to romp around at home in.

When Joey came back, they headed downstairs without any problems. The blond had improved greatly after eating a decent meal and sleeping off his exhaustion. They headed for the living room.

"You're here! I set up some snacks and stuff. The pizza will be here soon," exclaimed Mokuba. He had set up some sodas, chips, popcorn, and candy on the coffee table in front of the small couch. It seated two people. There was a blanket there as well.

"You and Seto sit here," Mokuba said, indicating the couch. "I got a blanket for you Joey…in case you get cold. Are…you sure you're okay?" he asked worriedly.

Joey smiled slightly and ruffled Mokuba's hair gently. "Yes. I'm fine. And thanks for the blanket. That was really thoughtful of ya."

Mokuba smiled, but sprung away from Joey when he heard the doorbell ring. "Pizza!" he shouted.

Kaiba and Joey laughed at Mokuba's excitement. Growing tired from standing, Joey resignedly sat down on the right side of the couch, propping his feet up on the coffee table. Kaiba noticed this and decided to do a bit of reorganizing so that Joey would be more comfortable.

First, he brought two small tables to each side of the couch. After that he dragged a comfortable armchair next to the couch on Joey's side and added another small table to the open side of the chair. Kaiba divided the sodas and snacks amongst the three tables and pulled the coffee table closer to Joey. He placed down a pillow and propped Joey's feet on it so that he would be more comfortable.

"Ya didn't have to do all that," Joey muttered quietly as Kaiba took the blanket and wrapped it around him snuggly.

"I know. But I want to."

"PIZZA! Pizzapizzapizzapizzapizza," announced Mokuba, coming in with two large boxes of pizza. Placing them on the coffee table, the young boy shouted, "I'll go get plates!" He darted off for where Joey supposed was the kitchen.

Grabbing a can of soda, Joey attempted to open it. He sighed in aggravation. He must really be out of it if he couldn't manage to open something as simple as a can of soda. The blond looked at Kaiba shyly. "Kaiba?"

He looked at Joey and then at the outstretched hand holding the soda can. He chuckled. "Poor Puppy," Kaiba teased, taking the can and opening it. "You'll be better in no time. Don't worry."

"I hope so," Joey replied.

Mokuba then rushed back into the room, paper plates and napkins in hand. He set them on the coffee table and opened the first box of pizza. Placing two slices of pizza on each plate, he distributed them and the napkins. Next he raced over to the DVD player and inserted a DVD. He raced back over to the chair awaiting him, remote in hand, and plopped himself in it.

"Are you guys ready?" asked Mokuba.

"Yeah. What are we watchin'?" questioned Joey.

"Underworld!" Mokuba exclaimed triumphantly through a mouthful of pizza.

"Again?" groaned Kaiba. "You've watched it like what…forty times already?"

"Forty-seven. This will make forty-eight."

Kaiba stifled another groan as he took a bite of his pizza.

Joey looked between the two of them. It must be nice to have a family like this. All the nonsense bickerin' and teasin'. And no matter what, they continue to look after one another. He wished he could have that. He'd give anything to have that.

I was cryin' when I met you
Now I'm tryin' to forget you
Your love is sweet misery
I was cryin' just to get you
Now I'm dyin' just to let you
Do what you do what you do down to me, baby, baby, baby

Growing depressed by his thoughts, he put his plate of pizza aside and just watched the movie, much to Kaiba's dismay.

"Pup? Why aren't you eating? Are you feeling okay?" he asked concernedly, placing his pizza off to the side as well.

Joey forced a smile as he fought back tears. "I'm fine. I guess I'm not really that hungry."

Kaiba's eyes narrowed. "You need to eat, Joey. You can't keep going around skipping meals otherwise you're going to become seriously ill."

"I know that," he responded quietly. "It's just…" I will not cry. I will not cry. He sniffed and took a deep breath. "I…" He shook his head and gave up trying to explain himself.

"Puppy," Kaiba said seriously. "Tell me." Mokuba stopped watching the movie when he heard his brother use that tone. And that's all it took for Joey to start crying.

"Puppy, it's okay," Kaiba said soothingly, trying to comfort the blond. "I just want to know what's wrong."

Mokuba paused the movie so that he could figure out what was wrong with Joey also. "Joey? You can tell us."

"It's stupid," the blond muttered.

"Whatever you say will not be stupid. Just tell us," insisted Kaiba earnestly.

"I want…what ya guys have," Joey began quietly. "A…lovin' family…I can be a part of."

Mokuba and Kaiba were stunned by his confession. Joey took their silence as a sign that they thought he was being silly. "I told ya it was stupid."

"No, Puppy. It's not stupid," Kaiba said, rubbing his back.

"Yeah, Joey. It's not stupid at all. Lots of people want that," Mokuba added.

"But it doesn't mean they'll get it," Joey replied bitterly.

Mokuba sighed and sat on the other side of Joey, scooting close to him. "Maybe not everyone. But you can. You've got your sister, your friends, and…me and Seto."

Joey laughed softly. "You're right about that…but my sister lives so far away and mom won't let me come see her. My friends have families of their own and some of them have their Yamis. Ya guys…well…ya just took in a stray. It's not the same as havin' a real family. Maybe…mutts aren't supposed to."

Mokuba glared at his brother angrily, making the stoic CEO flinch.

"Puppy? That's not true." Joey looked up at Kaiba. He'd never seen the blond look so vulnerable before. "Everyone deserves to have a family that loves them. Even you. And…for the time being…you can be…a part of our…family," Kaiba said tentatively. He wasn't sure how Joey was going to respond to that.

Joey appeared confused. "What do ya mean?"

"I mean that you can stay here for as long as you need and we'll…always be here for you. You might even be lucky enough to take part in our family outings. If that's okay with you?"

For the first time in a long while, Joey gave a real smile. "Thank ya. I'd like that very much."

"Good. It's settled then," said Kaiba with a dignified nod.

"Yeah!" Mokuba launched himself into Joey's arms and hugged him. "Can we continue watching the movie now?" Joey nodded as Mokuba got off him, handing him back his pizza. "Eat it all!"

"Sure," Joey laughed. He turned to face Kaiba again. "And thanks…for everything. I really appreciate it."

"It's no problem." No problem at all. And you will be a part of this family…in more ways than one if you'll let me.

They both started watching the movie again, satisfied with how they'd handled things so far.

After the movie was over, Mokuba was practically bouncing off the walls from his sugar intake.

"Mokuba? How about you go up to your room and play video games for a while. The Pup's tired, so I'm going to put him to bed."

"Okay, Seto," Mokuba answered, darting to his bedroom.

Kaiba glanced at the dozing blond leaning on his shoulder. He nudged him gently. "Come on, Pup. Let me take you to bed."

That woke him up. "What?" Joey screeched, stunned by Kaiba's suggestion.

"Not like that!" the brunet exclaimed, though it did sound pleasing enough.

"Oh," Joey said, realizing that he'd made a mistake.

"Let's go." Kaiba helped Joey up and led him up the stairs and into his bedroom.

"Um…Kaiba? Don't ya think…ya know…since I'll be stayin' here…that I should have my own room?" he asked timidly.

Kaiba paused in his movements and seemed to contemplate this. "Yes. You can. But not tonight. None of the other bedrooms are prepared for someone to stay in them. Tomorrow you can have your own room."



"I…I d-don't have anythin'," he said quietly.

"You can continue wearing my things until we get you new stuff, okay? Tomorrow, if you're feeling up to it, we'll stop by Kaiba Corp. so that I can set you up with your new job and then we'll go shopping. What do you think?"


"I don't want to hear any arguments. I'm getting you new things whether you like it or not," Kaiba deadpanned.

"S-Sounds good," Joey stated awkwardly.

Satisfied with the blond's response, he beckoned for him to get into bed. He did. Pulling the covers over the both of them, they soon fell asleep, thinking about what the next day had in store for them.

I was cryin' when I met you
Now I'm tryin' to forget you
Your love is sweet misery
I was cryin' when I met you
Now I'm dyin' cause I let you
Do what you do down to , down to, down to, down to
I was cryin' when I met you
Now I'm dyin' to forget you
Your love is sweet misery
I was cryin' when I met you

The next morning, everyone was dressed and ready to go to Kaiba Corp. Before they left, however, Kaiba spoke with his head maid, Ella.

"Ella? I need you to prepare the bedroom that's next to mine for our guest. He'll be staying with us for a while."

"Right away, sir," she said kindly. Ella was a woman who looked to be in her early fifties. She had graying hair and soft, kind eyes and had known the Kaiba boys for years. She was sort of like a mother to them. Although, at times, she could be…a handful. "Don't worry about a thing."

Pleased with her response, Kaiba headed toward where Joey and Mokuba were waiting for him. "Let's go."

They went out the door and into the waiting limo. It started up and they made their way to Kaiba Corp.

Joey was the first to break the silence. "Um, what exactly will I be doin'?"

"I planned on having you work as one of my beta game testers for my new virtual reality game. Are you interested?"

"Seto's been working on this new virtual reality game forever. It's going to be so cool," jumped in Mokuba.

"My job is gonna be testin' games? Ya bet I'm interested. It sounds like fun!" Joey replied eagerly. It was going to be great. Playing a game that no one else had played yet sounded awesome.

"I'm glad." Kaiba laughed at Joey's enthusiasm.

"Mr. Kaiba, sir. We've arrived," announced the driver.

"We're here!" Mokuba shouted, leaping from the limo. Joey and Kaiba followed suit, minus the leaping.

Joey was awestruck by the size of the Kaiba Corp. building. It was huge!

"Come, Pup. We wouldn't want you to get lost," said Kaiba, smirking.

The three of them entered an elevator that took them to the seventh floor. Kaiba stepped out swiftly and started walking down the long, brightly lit hallway. He made a right turn and entered a large room that had some sort of giant capsule in the middle. Computers and other equipment lined the walls. A few workers were here and there, typing away at some program.

"Good morning, Mr. Kaiba. The scripting for the program is just about finished," said one of the employees.

"Excellent. Is it ready to be tested yet?" he inquired.

"Yes. Is he going to be testing it?" the employee asked, indicating Joey.

Kaiba nodded. "You want to try it now, Pup?"

"Can I?" he asked. Kaiba nodded again. "Okay. What do I do?"

Kaiba jumped into an explanation. "You will just need to step into this capsule. It will scan your body and create a realistic virtual persona of yourself for game play. It will have the same strengths and weaknesses you have in real life. After the scanning is complete, you'll move onto a smaller capsule where your consciousness will jump into your computerized virtual body. Then you'll be ready to play."

"That sounds so cool," replied Joey.

"It's done sir," announced another one of Kaiba's employees.

"Are you ready to try it out?" asked Kaiba. Joey nodded his head excitedly. "Okay. Open the capsule."

The giant capsule's door opened and Joey cautiously stepped inside. "Just stand very still after the door closes. The computer will scan your body and when the door opens we can move on to the smaller capsule," Kaiba said.

When the door closed, the brunet ordered his employees to initiate the program. It started scanning Joey when a few sparks suddenly shot from the capsule.

"What's going on?" Kaiba demanded. The computers were going haywire.

"We don't know!" His employees were frantic.

Suddenly another big spark came from the capsule.

"Joey!" yelled Kaiba and Mokuba simultaneously. Another big spark burst from the capsule and all power in the room cut off.

"Get things up and running now! Get him out of there!" Kaiba said in a panicky voice. They were able to get the computers back online when the generator finally kicked in. And when it did, they heard Joey give a high-pitched scream.

"Get those doors open now!" Kaiba thundered worriedly.

Finally, the capsule doors opened, smoke seeping out.

"What the hell did ya do to me, Kaiba?" came a feminine-like yelp from inside the capsule.

When the smoke cleared, everyone's jaws dropped.

There stood Joey Wheeler.

A very naked and very female Joey Wheeler.

"Pu…ppy?" he balked, quickly covering his little brother's eyes.

End Chapter