Alright, last chapter alert!! Finally, a conclusion to my attempt at being historically accurate. I AM SORRY FOR NOT UPDATING SOONER!!! I was having issues with school and my family and other stuff and… again, sorry!!! Oh and I'd like to thank Edward's Lover1026 for helping me out with the ending because she's awesome like that! I do not own Yu-Gi-Oh!
Chapter Ten: You're Mine
Ow… my head…
It feels as though a thousand rocks are being pounded deeper and deeper into my skull. I recall this feeling, the feeling of too much alcohol from the night before. I remember drinking more than I should have and my actions…
I slept with Mana.
She was crying in the pain I was giving her, yet I wouldn't stop. Why do I keep hurting her? But still… she let me make love to her. Every kiss I gave her was no lie and she even said she loved me. I wish I had spoken up about my feelings earlier.
Too late to go back.
But how did I get this bruise on my…?
I remember now.
I also recall him wanting my head on a spike and…
It dawns on me what he has said to me. I have to stop Mana from leaving before morning. Is it too late? I practically jump out of my bed and get dressed when I saw Ra high in the sky.
I beg to any God that will hear me.
Don't let it be too late…
() () () () () () () () ()
Atemu sprinted down the halls; pushing any person, who couldn't move fast enough, out of his way. He had already wasted enough time in getting up and time was ticking on his time till Mana left. All the hope he had left was hell-bent on praying she had not left the gates yet. He stopped at the balcony which faced the northern gate and saw her and Dartz entering the carriage. NO! Atemu sprinted more, even faster than before till he made it to the outside. His chest heaved up and down and at that point, he realized he made it in time to see the gates closing off. He pressed his head against the alabaster stone and cursed under breath. "Damn it all, she… left!"
The tightening of his chest constricted every fiber of his being, the pain spreading with each breath he took. "It figures, doesn't it?" He lifted his head up to see Mahado standing before him with the coldest look in his eyes, almost like daggers cutting through him. "Mana left and she wondered where you were too. You couldn't even face what you've done, could you?" Atemu lowered his gaze to the ground as Mahado walked up the steps to him. A coward…
"Pharaoh!" Seto walked up to the two, not realizing the tension between them. "It seems you are too late to say farewell. Too bad, she wanted to see you. I even offered to go wake you up." What?! She wanted me to come! "But she said she didn't want to disturb you. That girl never listened to me before and decides now not to bug you. Honestly, I will never understand her." He mumbled softly before walking off from them.
She left… Atemu's legs felt heavier than stone and the pounding of his head refused to stop. She… He knew the truth of what happened, of the choice she made. But it was difficult to accept, even harder to have a grasp on the very idea of it.
Mahado nodded slightly and raised a brow to Atemu. "From here to the docks is a long stretch of road."
He shrugged his shoulders. "I suppose if you really want to wish her good-bye, it's not entirely too late. That is, if you actually want to go. It's understandable if you won't. After all, it does take a real man to face what he'd done." Mahado walked off in the same direction as Seto while Atemu stared back at the ground.
Atemu sighed heavily and scraped his nails against the stone, doing his best to contain his sorrow. "To face what I've done, maybe I am a co-… wait… the road?" The realization finally hit him as the full blow of Mahado's words cut through him. Atemu pushed himself away from the wall and sprinted toward the stables which happened to be in the same direction that Mahado and Seto went. He felt a new feeling coursing through him, accelerating his speed more than an adrenaline rush ever could. This was his chance… his only chance to get Mana back.
"How much you want to bet Pharaoh's going to lock himself in his room for the next few days?"
"Seto, you really shouldn't make a bet you're not prepared to win." Mahado warned him, but Seto scoffed.
"Oh please, it's obvious what's going to happen." Mahado raised a brow at his accusation, wanting to know more. "He's going to lock himself in his room with all the wine he could ever ask for, bring a different dancer in for the next few nights to forget about that anno-"
"MOVE IT!" The loudest yell came from behind them and both turned and moved toward the wall seeing Atemu come crashing through them.
Seto stared at the sight of his fleeting cousin and ran after him, catching him not as quickly as he anticipated. "Pharaoh, where the hell are you going?"
"After Mana!" Atemu yelled, trying to get his cousin out of his way. "I order you to move."
What Seto was doing didn't surprise Atemu much, even if Seto was disobeying his orders which almost never happened. "You will not!" The Pharaoh raised a brow at him and tried to get in front of his cousin but failed again. "May I remind you that you are Pharaoh and your place is here, not going after some apprentice?!"
"She's not just an apprentice!"
Seto's eyes narrowed to a harsh glare. "In any case, Mana made her choice. And Pharaoh should accept it."
Atemu sighed; the slightest hint of regret was said through his gesture. "… you're right." He reached up and gingerly caressed his crown. "Pharaoh will not go after her, his place is here." Atemu took off his crown and stared in admiration at it, not seeing Seto's victorious smirk. "Pharaoh will stay… but…" His next action stunned Seto and Mahado, who had just arrived.
The loud clanging noise ran through the stone corridor as silence showered over them. Atemu… had thrown his crown.
Discarded it as though it was trash. "Atemu will not." His final words before running past his cousin, who stood as still as stone, and his action horrified Seto. Atemu throwing the crown… he did not want to be Pharaoh? Which left…
"ATEMU!" Seto turned and shouted with all his might. "YOU WILL NOT LEAVE ME THIS!" As he started to run after him, Mahado pulled on his cape which caused them both to fall to the ground. "Mahado! What in Ra's name are you doing?"
"He's made his choice, the right choice. Let him be."
() () () () () () () () ()
Mana sighed heavily and leaned her head against her palm, staring out at the sands of Egypt. She would most likely never return and she needed these last memories. Mana was happy she got to say good-bye to everyone… everyone except the one person she really wanted to see. Was last night really not meaningful to you?
"Mana?" Her thoughts were instantly erased as she raised her head up to face Dartz. "Are you alright? You seem rather distracted."
The corners of her mouth emerged into a fake smile, barely passing as a legitimate one. However, he did not notice. "I'm fine. I'm just… a little homesick already. It's a little weird to me, I've never been outside the city and now… on to a new country." Nervously, Mana began to rub her hands together and bite her bottom lip. It was rather awkward now and she knew not what else to say to him. This… isn't a terribly good start, is it?
Suddenly, she felt his hand on her shoulder and before she could do anything Mana was turned to Dartz and his lips came down to her own. As quickly as the kiss happened, it ended as she pushed him away. "What's wrong" Being the Prince that he was, Dartz was not used to being rejected… ever.
"It's a little quick, don't you think?" Her anxiety level rose as his arms wrapped around her waist and pulled her body closer to him.
"Not at all, my dear Mana. You are to be my bride so it doesn't matter when I want to have you, does it?" Dartz kissed her again but moved on quickly to her neck, sucking harshly on her skin despite her struggles.
"STOP IT!" He pushed her down onto her back and his hand moved swiftly down her body. She felt revolted, not because he was touching her roughly but because it was him touching her. It was different than Atemu's fingers and lips, this was foreign and it didn't feel as good as what she felt before. "No!!" She cried out again. "I don't want to do this!!"
Dartz stopped and looked at her for a brief moment before slapping her across the face. "You are not to refuse me again. Understand?!" He was mad and she knew why. One thing was true in any country, even her homeland of Egypt… if a man wanted a woman, she must never refuse. Dartz held her by the waist tightly and whispered slightly in her ear. "Besides, I was robbed of seeing Atemu's defeated face this morning and I need some pleasure. Who better than you?" His lips came down on her again, and his touches were still as rough. Mana regretted everything now. If this was to be her fate for all eternity; to bed this man and bear his children, then she had to get out.
Mana willed her wand out of one of her bags and whacked him over the head. It distracted him long enough for her to grab her wand and jump out of the carriage, running away as fast as her feet could take her. For the past few weeks, Mana had been blinded. She hated to admit it but Kisara was right. Aside from her current feelings for Atemu, there was no real reason for her to leave. I'm sorry Mahado; I shouldn't have made you suffer.
She could see a horseman coming from a distance, her last sign to return to the palace before Dartz caught up with her. The horseman came closer and Mana recognized him immediately. But why was he…? "Atemu!" Mana screamed out as he jumped off of his horse and pulled her behind him.
"Stay here." Atemu unsheathed his sword as Dartz came into sight and appeared before him. "Back away!" He held out the sword in front of him, ready to cut down Dartz.
"Return her to me now Atemu! Don't forget, she is to be my bride!"
"Really? Mana," he tilted his head slightly, "do you want to go with him?" Both watched as she shook her head and clutched onto Atemu's cape. "There's your answer." Atemu watched as Dartz's anger boiled over.
"Don't you dare! She has been given to me!" Before he could step any further, he felt the sharp point of Atemu's sword press against his chest. Atemu was serious about not letting Mana go, even going as far as to put forth a weapon. There were two options; either fight Atemu for who would take Mana away or to let her go. "Fine… you can keep the harlot. I don't consider her worth the effort you're putting forth." Atemu pressed the sword deeper, blood running down Dartz's chest and onto his clothing. He backed away and laughed. My blood for her freedom… Pharaoh, you have lost your mind.
Atemu and Mana watched Dartz enter his carriage and ride away. She released his cape and he sheathed back his sword. "Mana, are you okay?" There was no answer from her. "Mana?"
His hand moved up and gave her shoulder an assuring squeeze. Mana finally looked up and her eyes, expression, everything was riddled with regret. "Just… don't… say it."
"That you were right! That I should have listened to you and…" She stopped as the tears were gleaming in her dark green eyes. Atemu thought it best not to say anything, silence was a better remedy. The tears that were in her eyes never fell and she brushed some of hair away from her face. It was awkward being next to Atemu, that wasn't debatable. "Um, thank you uh, sa-… Atemu, why are you here?" Her original intention to thank him for saving her had been thrown out the window as she wondered why he was there.
That question, for Atemu, was difficult to answer. He knew what her reaction would the moment she asked. He sighed heavily. "To stop you from leaving."
Mana growled out of frustration and kicked the pebbles across the dirt as hard as she could. "You came to control me, again!"
"I did not! And if I hadn't come, then who knows what Dartz would have done." Mana didn't have an answer for him; too many things were running through her mind. All in all, she didn't want to be stuck in the middle of the road arguing with the Pharaoh. "Mana, I'm sorry. Everything that I have done, I thought it was for the best. Last night though…"
Great, last night… did he regret it? Please Atemu, if I mean anything to you just stop!
"I'll admit, I shouldn't have done that. I should have had more control but… I let my feelings get the best of me and… Mana, I wasn't trying to hurt you. I've wanted that night for so long and I really did think you were going to leave me." He paused as he saw her turning around, her back facing him now. Why couldn't he just stop? I don't want to hear this… Atemu walked up to her and wrapped his arms around her protectively. "I love you Mana and I never wanted you to leave. I just want you to be mine. Mana, look at me please. I will prove my love for you."
She turned just like he wanted and he stood there, looking back at her. Mana waited for him to start but he wasn't doing anything. There was though, something different about him. A gasp escaped her. "Where's your crown? You idiot, you dropped your crown! Come on, we have to-"
"No, I didn't." There was shock running through her. "I took it off. I've realized that my crown prevents us from being together, from being nothing more than friends."
"Atemu… you didn't."
He nodded. "I'm giving it up. And if giving it up means I can have the life I want with you, it's worth it." Atemu moved his hand to hers and brought her hand up his lips, kissing each finger. The memory of the night came back to her all too clearly. "Marry me Mana. We can run away and live together. I know that I can provide for you and care for you. For us to live together, wouldn't you like that?" He held onto her fingers tightly and placed his hand at her waist, pulling her into a tight embrace.
To be with Atemu would be wonderful, just the two of them. No suitors, dancers or anyone else to come between them. "You have no idea…" She whispered softly, not noticing the happiness that was sweeping across Atemu's face.
"Run away with me now then. I will spend the rest of eternity atoning for my sins against you and making you happy." Atemu lifted her up so her feet were no longer on the ground. "Your answer, my love?" He knew what her answer would be, the joy in her eyes said it all. But still, he wanted to hear her say it.
Mana knew what she wanted as she leaned down and kissed his lips softly. To be with Atemu… and for him to be mine alone… Atemu stared at her when she ended the sweet kiss all too soon. She whispered against his lips. "… I can't."
The words pierced through his chest and plunged into his heart, aching profusely. His grip weakened and she was put back on her feet. "Mana, I d-don't understand… why? Is it my actions? Are you that unable to look beyond the past?"
Mana turned and got up on his horse. "Let's just go home." Atemu's eyes were blank and she didn't want to see the shallow stare that she caused. He too jumped on the horse and she held on tightly to Atemu as they rode on to the palace. You don't get it, I want to run away with you. I want us to be together but… I can't put this misery on someone else. Mana thought about who would take the throne if Atemu had given it up.
Seto would. But where would that leave Kisara? Alone in that village in her noble house, having to be alone and plagued with the thought of sharing Seto. Mana knew they wanted to marry and with him staying as a Priest it was possible. But as Pharaoh, never. Mana would take the misery on her shoulders, not allowing someone who was once a stranger to her… a friend now, have sorrow due to her.
() () () () () () () () ()
Seto stood at the northern balcony, tapping the crown angrily against the stone. He's not leaving me, that idiot will come back… he has to. "What kind of man abandons the throne anyway?!!" He screamed off into the distance and calmed a bit when he saw a rider coming. "About time." He made his way quickly to the gates, passing the word along that Pharaoh had returned.
The gates opened and the horse slowed to a halt as they entered. Atemu got off the horse and helped Mana down. There was no talking between them on the ride there and neither had the chance to start as the royal court came toward them with Seto in front, holding a golden… Oh. Atemu met him half-way, Seto stopped in front of him and practically stabbed the crown back onto Atemu's head. "Don't you dare try that again! I will kill you if you do that again!" No one really cared at this point that Seto had made a threat to the Pharaoh's face; it was to make him stay. Mana took her wand and gripped it, never wanting to let go of it again. "You too!" Seto pointed to Mana, which surprised her when she looked up. "Don't leave again either! Otherwise someone is going to run after you!!"
I guess that's his way of saying 'Welcome Back'. "MANA!" Mahado joyfully cried out as he ran up to the girl, wrapping his arms around her frame and twirled her in circles. "I thought I'd never see you again!"
Tears came down her face as she laughed and hugged him back. Mahado rarely showed his excitement, only for good reason. "Mahado!" He put her right back down on her feet and ruffled her hair. "Um… I'm sorry, for… well, you know."
"Yes, I do and don't apologize." Mahado finished up for her, knowing what his young apprentice was going to say. Mana then ran up to the others, jumping on them in joy that she wasn't leaving them. Mahado turned back to Seto and Atemu, who seemed to be in a bit of an argument.
Of course, by argument it was Seto yelling at him for going after Mana and Atemu just nodding, not really paying attention. Finally, the Priest was done with the Pharaoh and went inside with the others to give Mana a proper welcoming. "Pharaoh," Mahado started when Atemu's eyes weren't as blank as before, "thank you for bringing her back. I don't know how to express-"
"Please don't. Other than her not being a virgin, nothing has really changed. I still can't be with her, she still hates me, and all I have to do is wait until the next suitor comes along. All I've done is prolonged her stay."
Mahado figured that's what would have happened. But... "She doesn't hate you."
"Really?! I would have given up my throne to be with her and… she refused me. What else do you call that besides hate?!"
"Oh Ra, you still think like a child! Mana loves you, very much. But she doesn't want you to give up your throne. It's your birthright, no one's but yours. I don't think she would be able to live with herself if she allowed you to give up who you are."
Atemu scoffed as he rubbed his head which was aching due the strength Seto had used to force it back into place. "Alright. Then I ask you to give me advice Mahado. As my friend, how do I prove my love?"
If Mahado was all-knowing, as he was appearing now, then he should have an answer. But Mahado wasn't extraordinary, just a High Priest who was too much involved in the situation at hand. "Wait." Atemu raised a brow, wanting an explanation for that little word. "Now that Mana is back, I can continue her training."
"I don't really see-"
"Let me finish! When she is fully done with her training, she'll be like me… a Master Magician. Do you see where I'm going with this?" Atemu must've stared at Mahado for the longest time before the final result presented itself. Mana… a priestess? With her new rank, she would be considered a noble and perfectly eligible as Pharaoh's wife. He and her could be together, with no trouble. "Pharaoh, I will grant you permission to marry Mana on a few conditions."
Atemu was too excited over the idea of actually being with Mana he didn't care what the conditions would be. "Name them."
"Because of your carelessness, Mana isn't a virgin and she belongs to you." The way Mahado had said it nearly cut through Atemu; this was meant to be Mahado's way of punishing him. "You will not lay a single finger on her, not one touch until after she earns her title." Atemu nodded, agreeing to it though not being able to touch her would hurt. "Second, to prevent Mana's heart from getting wounded again by your actions, you will not bed the dancers."
"I'll hold no one." Atemu responded quickly, even turning it up a notch.
"Better. Give me your word that you will do this and I will give you Mana's hand. However, break any of these once and even by accident, you cannot have her. If you are the man I think you are, then there shall be no trouble."
The Pharaoh nodded and walked back inside, making his way into his room to get the sleep he was desperately craving now. Though it was the middle of the day, he felt his energy completely drained. I can have Mana… I can actually have her! He was almost leaping for joy, rejoicing at the idea of being so much closer to Mana than he was before. Now came the hard part.
() () () () () () () () () ()
2 Years Later
Mana jumped around excitedly, waving her wand to cause bubbles appearing all over her room. She was happy, too happy in fact. Mahado had recently told her that all her years of improving her failed sorcery had finally paid off.
The training was complete and she belonged to a new rank, the same as Mahado at last. Tomorrow Mana was to get her title. "Hm, Mana… the High Priestess. I LOVE it!" Mana put down her wand and walked over to the small crib next to her bed. She stared at the small child who was looking straight back at her with adoration glistening in his eyes. "Guess what, little Yugi. Your mommy's gonna be a Master Magician tomorrow. Aren't you happy for me?"
"… oog." Yugi gurgled out and then giggled. Mana picked him up, making sure he was placed comfortably in her arms as she rocked him at a relatively slow pace. Yugi had a bad habit as of recently to stay awake when he ought to have been sleeping.
However, his lack of sleep tonight was Mana's fault. "Yes Yugi, oog." She whispered back and laughed. She really was happy, to be done with her training and to be playing around with her kid without worries… life was good. Mana stopped twirling him around as she heard the knock at the door. "Mahado," she started, "if you're gonna tell me you made a mistake, I swear I'm gonna…" Her throat dried when she opened the door and saw not her Master but the Pharaoh standing before her. "… Atemu."
The child in her arms looked to the man standing at the door and smiled happily, now trying to reach over to him. "Hey little one." Atemu picked him up as Yugi cuddled into his arms. "Did you miss your dad?" The child didn't reply, but held onto Atemu tighter. "Quiet tonight, isn't he?"
"Yup… do you need something?"
"Can I come in?" Mana opened the door for him to enter and closed it after he was inside. She wasn't nervous with him being inside her room, after all Mana knew he wasn't going to try anything. Mahado had told her all about the deal he made with Atemu a couple of days after she was brought back and knew it wasn't about to change anytime soon. She stared at Atemu and Yugi curiously, seeing the similarities between them. Yugi was almost a child form of Atemu, except he had her smile. She remembered how Atemu was almost put into shock when she first told him about her pregnancy and how he practically waited on her hand and foot during those nine months. Their child was one of the reasons the wall separating them was tearing, along with time which weakened their bitterness. Time did heal wounds. "Shada told me you're going to be a Priestess tomorrow, am I correct?"
Atemu walked over to Yugi's crib and set him down, much to the boy's discontent. "Go to sleep." Yugi held out his arms, wanting to be picked up again. "Daddy has to talk to Mommy now, go to bed." The child still stared at his father as he laid down with his head rested against a pillow. Eventually, he closed his eyes and fell into deep sleep. "I'm happy for you, all those years of training paid off at last." Atemu moved away from the crib and sat down on the couch where Mana was. "Tomorrow will be happy day, for two reasons."
Mana grabbed a pillow from the couch and went over to the crib to set another pillow of comfort for her son. "Two reasons?"
"Yes, the first is obviously for your personal achievement. Can you guess what the second is?"
"It had to do with us you know." She turned and walked over to the bedpost, holding onto it for support. "I'm only here to give you um… short notice that I'll be asking for marriage, with you."
"… I know…" Mana spoke softly. Now she wasn't so sure if being alone with him was safe… but it wasn't bad, not at all. "Ask Mahado for his blessing first." The mere statement was meant to buy time for her.
"I already did. He gave it."
It worked for all of ten seconds before the decision was back to her. "Ask me tomorrow."
Atemu stood to his feet and was now across from her at the bedpost. His hand was so dangerously close to her own, one little movement and they would touch. "Don't by coy Mana, I'm here now and you've had the last two years to think about it." His body was barely away from hers, the familiarity between them was a bit much for her. Mana removed her hands from the bedpost and stood next to the door. She realized this day would happen, when she would reject or accept him.
His hands were on either side of her head while her back pressed against the wall. "I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love you and I want to marry you." He leaned down, his lips almost touching hers. "I've waited for you Mana; I wait now for your acceptance just to touch you. Please…"
Those red eyes… They once were comforting to her, then turned to hatred and now… the emotion he held in them, it was genuine. The past two years, he kept his promise. He touched neither her nor any other woman. The feelings between them had changed. I want him…
Atemu's hands lowered to his side and he moved away from her. "I get it. Your answer is still the same as it was then."
"… no… they…" Mana mumbled and before she realized, she leapt forward and jumped onto Atemu. He lost his balance fairly quickly and fell backward onto the couch. "Don't leave." Her lips were on his almost instantly. She didn't want to think of the consequences of her choice but for the first time in what seemed like an eternity, he was in her arms.
"M-Mana," he jerked his head away but that didn't stop her from continuing her kisses downward, "not… I made a…"
"I release you from that deal. Please Atemu; I don't want to wait until our wedding night."
She tried to kiss him again but his finger came to her lips and he shook his head. A red blush appeared on her cheeks, embarrassed that he was still saying no. "Our child is here, asleep. As much as I would love to reciprocate your touches, I don't want to disturb his rest." His finger came down and he kissed her cheek. "Do you want me to be yours that badly?"
Mana chuckled as she pushed back his shoulders and tapped his nose with her index finger. "Silly Pharaoh," she snuggled deeper into the embrace, "you're already mine."
() () () () () () () () () ()
I am hers.
The next day she got her title and then instantly jumped onto me while I was seated upon my throne and kissed me. I've missed that. The familiarity between us, the closeness we once shared. I spent the last two years repairing it, trying to regain her trust and the love I nearly destroyed.
Mana is my wife now and that night; I held her in my arms and made love to her as many times as she wished.
I only want to be with her, no one else. I almost lost my mind when Mana said she loved me still. Those feelings…
… how I longed for them.
By the end of the night though, it was clear to the both of us through the decisions we made that the final outcome was right.
I become hers.
And she is now mine.
Thank God for CST Testing!! I swear, three days of doing nothing really got me to finish this chapter and well, the story too. I really did have fun writing this and I hope you guys like the ending. If anyone's interested in reading a story about Malik and Ryou wrecking with everyone's love lives then keep a look out for my next story Fate's Mistake. Thanks for reading and review please!