Author's Note: I think this fic has been on the drawing board for revision for like… two years. Well, part one of the revision's here! (I'll dodge the rotten vegetables and the booing sounds on the way out.)

Disclaimer: I own nothing.

Warnings: This story is rated for the issue of consent in sexual relations, strong homosexual themes, and language.

It is somewhat canon, but veers off course from the original story line fairly quickly.

This story is written in a completely different style from Of Elevators and Muses, with no corny jokes or slapstick references. It might not be appealing to some readers, and I completely understand that.

'You can't separate yourself from this…'

He could still remember the chill-inducing terror of watching, for the very first time, the five points of the Millennium Ring breaking into his skin.

It had been of sheer, frozen shock.

He could still recall the initial sensation of feeling the prongs embedding and sinking into his flesh.

It had been of repulsion, of nausea.

His could still hear the echoes of his plea, asking to be spared and left alone.

It had been met with only harsh, maniacal laughter.

'I have chosen you as my master for all of eternity!'


Who is the real master?

Control is one of those things that can be hard to explain. It's easy enough to immediately say, 'Of course I know what the word means!', but when asked to properly define it, one might pause and think for a while before answering.

To dominate, to command: these are both suitable synonyms. To control is to exert irrefutable power or restraint over something.

There are many ways in which people can exercise control over others. Propaganda, torture, lies: the list goes on and on. The critical point is that one controls by seizing onto an emotion, be it guilt, sympathy— narcissism, even.

Fear, of course, is always a way; it's the ability to get another to obey, not because he or she is convinced that what he or she is told to do is right, but rather, because of the fear of what's happening, and maybe, the fear of what might happen if he or she does not comply.

No matter what the emotion, once the person being influenced breaks under that emotion, the reins are set and the locks, in place.

Why do those who control, do it? Perhaps they enjoy feeling that they are above the rest, or they are afraid of disorder, or they genuinely feel that their being in charge is for the greater good of all.

Or, they are those who have had enough of the shackles over their own limbs and resist—indeed, those who have been downtrodden before and now expect retribution—But one must remember that usurpation is not always benign, and in fact, by seizing control from another, it might only cement the continuation of a vicious cycle—

There are also those who are simply curious.

Bakura Ryou did not talk much these days. He spoke when spoken to, but rarely answered with more syllables than that of the question he was asked. He nodded or shook his head silently otherwise, and hardly ever held eye contact with the other person.

It wasn't always this way. Yet nothing remained of himself from those few years prior to show for it other than his Monster World set—a hobby long abandoned—and his collection of yellowed letters addressed to his sister.

Ryou observed more than spoke. He used his eyes and ears more than his mouth. There were plenty of things that one could learn simply by being silent and noticing.

That man never noticed, though. He never noticed much.

But Ryou did; he observed his classmates, and saw how things like convoluted feelings and raging hormones accompanied teenagers in their journeys to young adulthood; adolescents, in all of their irresponsible and selfish glory, giving in to the desire for newfound emotional yearnings and physical passions.

Yet whereas his classmates could confess to their crushes by calling them out to the schoolyard or by a sickeningly saccharine hand-written note declaring his or her feelings—some of which had even found their way to Ryou's desk and shoe locker— Ryou didn't have nearly as much interest, in either the action or in his peers.

Of course, that didn't mean that he didn't have an interest in physical interactions.

He had urges every once in a while. But he suppressed them.

He could suppress them.

He had to suppress them.

Rays of light streamed heavily in through the large, rectangular windows that covered the majority of the west-facing wall that late afternoon. Beams of pure gold flooded the classroom, filtered only by the glass planes. They framed the silhouettes of the furniture and the two students cleaning inside.

Bakura Ryou realized that he had grown to hate the color gold as of the last two years, and never ventured near the windows if he could help it.

He stood near the wall facing opposite of the windows instead, sweeping the floor with a thin plastic broom. His eyes were on the task at hand; his movements were mechanical. Ryou was long accustomed to remaining distant to whatever he did; it was so much simpler that way.

Mutou Yuugi was beside the open windows, his small hands clutching the board erasers as he heartily clapped them together.

And then, there were three people in the room. Across from where Ryou stood presently, a transparent man appeared, giving an apparition of leaning against the doors. The newest addition pierced the room with a low, chilling chuckle that only one other could hear. Ryou could not keep at bay the feeling of immense dread as the cold voice rang in his ears. He had never been able to.

'Host, why are you so quiet? Talk!'

The pale hands gripping the slender plastic came to an immediate stop, and Ryou hoped that Mutou Yuugi would not suddenly turn away from the latter's current duty. He hated having others see him freeze up so pathetically. Ryou grit his teeth at the familiar, and yet still chilling— sensation of five sharp points pricking warningly at his chest. The Ring almost always remained hidden away by his uniform. After all, Ryou didn't want anyone to see the fetters that bound him.

The Ring was always around his neck, even when it wasn't.

Ryou up righted himself in the meantime, and tried to calm the abrupt cold sweat that had broken over his brow and the shake of his fingers by breathing quietly. The air left his dried lips as a soft, quivering exhale.

'Are you spooked, host? Did I scare you? So skittish, you are.'

And then, that man was standing right next to Ryou, laughing directly in his ear, and the raspy breaths of amusement sounded far too convincing, far too real. Ryou exhaled sharply at the sensation.

The sound of the hollow, plastic broom hitting the linoleum cracked into the apparent serene silence of the room like a particularly brutal whip, and Ryou suddenly wondered whether Yuugi could hear the deafening beating of the former's heart against his heaving ribcage.

"Bakura-kun?" Mutou Yuugi's small frame turned to face him, withdrawing his arms from the windowsill. In that position, perfectly kissed by those shafts of light, Yuugi almost looked like he was outlined in sunlight: A bright, golden lining blazed from the tips of his hair—giving the magenta hue an appearance of a bright, cheery flame— to his healthy skin to the large, gleaming pendant hanging around his neck.

Mutou Yuugi was not afraid of that color. He had no reason to be afraid.

"Bakura-kun?" he repeated, his voice always calm, always unbothered. "Is something wrong?"

Yes, something was wrong. Something was always wrong.

'Answer him, host. Have you gone mute?'

Ryou licked at his chapped lips with difficulty.

"Excuse me. I-I think I'm not feeling well. I have to go." It came out harsher than he intended.

Astounded amethyst eyes blinked rapidly in response. "Oh! Um, then…"

"Excuse me," Ryou repeated, and there was a tone that almost sounded like begging in his voice that time. He awkwardly stooped down to pick up the dropped broom and leaned it against a nearby student desk, ignoring Yuugi's eyes and that incessant, piercing laughter, and quickly grabbed for his bag and just as hurriedly left the classroom.

Judging solely by the way the young man moved, the walk was comparable to a much more painful, exhausting journey, as if he was carrying an invisible, draining weight with every step he took.

His limbs moved jerkily as he walked, almost as if strings were pulling him along. It never mattered where he went; the strings were always there, just unseen.

But Ryou could live with the illusion of running for now.

Ryou felt guilty for leaving Yuugi in the classroom without a coherent explanation for his leaving, but the remorse was quickly overpowered by the contempt that reminded him that while Yuugi had a kind and benign spirit by his side, Ryou was chained to that man for the rest of the foreseeable future.

Ryou could feel the spirit's presence currently somewhere in the recesses of his mind as he stood in the warmth of his shower, taking minute joy in the spray of the heated water on clammy skin. The spirit had no way to linger for long in the classroom without the Ring nearby, after all. Ryou knew that so long as he was holder of that Millennium Item, its inhabitant had no choice but to always remain nearby.

The artifact that bound the spirit to Ryou's body likewise bound the teenager to the spirit.

The Ring, which could not be lost, which could not be destroyed, fettered the two together.

He was sometimes secretly glad that his relationship with the Ring's spirit was so strained. The spirit never paid much attention to Ryou's thoughts. The reason why he chose not to do so simply was that he didn't quite care enough to listen.

And lately, the ephemeral impulses that surged through Ryou- the ones that only used to be every once in a while— were now becoming a bit too frequent to continue successfully ignoring their presence.

As if to purposely exemplify the fact, a sudden flitting image of holding an unidentified body close and tight, as well as sensations of the molten passion and the reveling in heat that emanated from both of their intertwined bodies, disturbed the placid pool making up the rest of his thoughts.

The image lasted no more than mere seconds, but the thought was enough to make Ryou's skin burn from the inside as the hot droplets of water rained down upon him from the out.

Ryou let out a sharp breath, teeth gritting as he quickly wrenched the knob to the left as far as it could go. Flinching at the onslaught of freezing water, he remained in the stall for only a few more minutes until the fleeting fantasy and his natural, physical response were nothing more than mere memories.

Ryou didn't play Monster World anymore. The gigantic board on which the gameplay took place stood in the corner of his living room, on its side and tucked away under a thick black cloth. Yet Ryou could not completely forget about his favorite hobby, tainted as it was in the last few years after that man's appearance. He would clean the set every so often, from the intricate props that decorated the board to the painted grid itself. The figurine set, all handmade, were also let out of their wooden box during this time to be wiped down and buffered.

Besides enjoying the relaxing feeling of such busy work, he felt obliged to do so as the set's caretaker and owner: the Game Master.

But that term rang hallow in his head these days.

He was master of nothing, not even his own body.

Ryou despised it when the spirit took over his body. During such times, Ryou's screams became silent mouthing of words, his fists became like mist. It was always sudden, and never pleasant. The feeling of absolute control of one's own body being given to someone else—it was nauseating and terrifying.

As host, he had no say in what went on. And Ryou had seen before, literally first-hand through eyes directed by the spirit, what that man was capable of: trapping souls in dimensions and objects as he saw fit— an unjust and cruel way of doling out punishment to those whom he believed wronged him, all in sinister amusement— injuring and manipulating his host's body if that gave him a chance to victory.

Each time left him reeling and urged an intense sensation of bile coming up his throat.

And so Ryou knelt in his bathroom now, paper-thin skin taut over bruised and bleeding knuckles as he clutched the sides of the porcelain bowl. He hadn't turned on the lights in his haste, and so sat in darkness as he struggled to keep himself up with sweaty palms, his hair sticking uncomfortably to the sides of his face. He heaved dry and choked breaths, his head pounding so loudly that the fresh memory of the last fifteen minutes replayed in his mind in a kind of unnaturally natural, patterned beat:

It had been a fight. A cruel, unnecessary fight that started with a few loitering and smoking students from Rintama High School jeering when Ryou's eyes lingered a moment too long on their presence on the benches in the abandoned public park nearby, and escalating when the spirit decided to find delight in egging them on and calling for a fight. He had seized control of Ryou's body in a heartbeat, a sensation that could best be described as being pulled back into an indestructible, completely void of light, and sound-proof room. Ryou did not know how much time passed in that suspension. He knew only that it had ended with scraped knuckles, a few mildly painful scratches on his arms, and a torn uniform for himself, and a bloody heap of unconscious teenagers in the park.

Ryou had regained control when the last body hit the ground, and after staring at the mess for moments with wide eyes and short, incoherent utterances that shook from his throat, Ryou had turned his heel in fear and fled.

The spirit had laughed, harshly and obnoxiously, all the way home. Each utterance of deranged glee rang shrilly in his ears.

Ryou squeezed his eyes shut, trying to shallow his breathing to a more natural pace. He straightened his back, pushing back his bangs with a shaking hand.

"Why?" he asked into the small room.

It was meant to be a rhetorical question; there was no expectance of a response, but still a taunting answer whispered in Ryou's ears: 'I was bored, host—Restless. You should be happy I find some outlet to be rid of excess energy.' The whispering turned into a mocking hiss. 'Aren't you pleased?'

Ryou's eyes snapped open as burning bitterness found its way up his throat again.

He cursed his own existence every day.

Perhaps things really began to change when Ryou had that dream. It was the kind of dream that was a common enough occurrence among teenage males, and in a general sense, really wouldn't have been a cause for anything other than perhaps guilty pleasure upon waking.

But it wasn't as simple as that.

It had involved a large bed. Ryou could remember brilliant mirrors surrounding every imaginable plane of the otherwise empty room the bed sat in, so many that the reflections in dazzling white light of two white-haired young men doubled into seemingly eternity.

Ryou had been on top of that man in the dream, kissing and grabbing and scratching and forcing. Long, messy hair became tangled in hands that tugged and roamed; lips surrendered to his tongue and teeth that bit and demanded. Hips canted up in automatic response to his unrelenting, quick-paced thrusts. Ryou had directed every jerking movement, every gasping sound. And that man had had no choice but to let Ryou orchestrate. The spirit was inarguably tangible, as he always was in his fantasies, but perhaps it was the length of the dream that allowed Ryou to realize something of interest: Despite the resistance of pushing and snarling and screaming, the spirit had been unable to throw him off.

Ryou had been in control the entire time. Not only was he able to direct his own body, he also had the ability to control that man's movements down to the last slight convulsion and throaty gasp…

And the heady feeling of that very realization alone was enough to make something molten and not quite tame manifest as a blooming plant in a very unfamiliar environment.

The onslaught of senses had been so great that he almost mistook it for reality when he woke up in a start. Ryou had to sit up in his own iron bed, alone and in the dark, for several heartbeats to finally understand what had transpired.

The spirit had no reason to know what Ryou had dreamt of, uninterested in his host's personal matters in general, and least of all his dreams. Ryou could feel his faint presence in the recesses of his mind when his own heartbeat calmed to an only slight more elevated rate several minutes after the fact. The Ring around his neck had warmed from the heat emanating from his skin, but otherwise displayed no evidence of being affected.

He needed to lean against the cold headboard of the bed, a metal structure made of intricate interwoven iron bars, the delicate detail of which belied its actual strength, in order to cool his back. Sweat had nearly soaked through his thin cotton top.

The sensation was automatically refreshing, but the entirety of the dream remained just as vivid in Ryou's mind.

Perhaps it was then that Ryou genuinely became curious.

Summer vacation was coming soon. Second year of high school has come and gone, and in a month, Ryou would be a senior classman. Ryou felt neither excitement nor hesitancy in ending this particular high school chapter of his life, for what was the point if they all began with the same opening words, in which all events involved a malicious ancient spirit?

There was only a week left before classes ended, and his classmates were abuzz in anticipation of the big day.

Ryou sat at his desk, his eyes on his open notebook even after the teacher had dismissed the class for their lunch break. Students milled about him, dragging their desks to friends so that they could dine together.

Yugi casted imploring looks at him from time to time; it was nearly impossible not to feel the large, anxious amethyst eyes directed at him, and though part of Ryou was touched by the gesture, he despised the pitying nature of the silent glances.

The spirit was resting again, uninterested in his host's current environment.

Ryou was trying to take advantage of the rare moment of freedom.

A soft voice broke in: "Bakura-kun… Would you… would you like to eat with us?" Yuugi's voice was light, carefully disguising something that sounded more along the lines of worry.

Ryou blinked at the offer, and perhaps it was the sudden jolt in his heart rate that caused the spirit to stir, a feeling that reminded Ryou of a feral cat arching its back after a nap.

"I can't—" he replied automatically— too directly, too desperately— because he didn't want the spirit to surface right now, and he especially didn't want Yuugi to be involved. He always had to do this—shy away from Yuugi and his friends—because to put it in its most basic terms, Ryou could not abate his intense jealousy of Yuugi and the spirit of the Millennium Puzzle's spirit whenever he saw the two interacting, and that man always found particular excuses in coming forth in times of especially strong emotions—

Ryou was very tired of all this involvement and these complications and the sheer frustration and bitter anger of it all— and maybe his face reflected this, for Yuugi shrunk back immediately.

"Oh! Um, okay, then." Yuugi's round eyes had turned away to look unhappily at the desk between them, and Ryou thought that the round-faced teenager's light-hearted tone was less adept at covering up dejection.

"I'm sorry," he said, though no emotion came attached to the apology.

It was better that way.

"No, no… It's fine." And Yuugi left to go back to his friends, whom gave the pair inquisitive looks before Ryou turned his head back to stare into his book again.

It was better that way.

Ryou could not stop thinking about that dream. It began to plague the rest of his nights, igniting a wild fire that he could do little about except stare silently with a thumping heart beat and stolen breath as it burned through his mind. They all involved the other's futile screaming and bucking and arching under Ryou, pinned and unwillingly subservient.

That man never noticed anything, and remained resting each time—the loosening of the reins and undoing of the locks during those times made the fantasies run rampant, inflaming Ryou's mind silently but rapidly.

Each time seemed to intensify in detail, and if Ryou noticed that the dreams only occurred in nights in which the spirit had taken control of his body earlier that day for whatever reason, the teenage boy dismissed the correlation as an after-thought.

He could not understand the reasoning behind why his thoughts twisted and urged in such a way. He did not know why he found the fantasy unshakable, unforgettable.

However, Ryou did know that after each time, he would wake up in his bed with a certain kind of hunger—a craving— that ached hotly between his legs and made his empty hands clench and unclench, grasping at cold air and not that defiant, heated body that obeyed him as they did in his dreams.

He also knew that after each time, that strange feeling of curiosity became progressively stronger.

So Ryou began to look at that man when the other was turned away, during other times when the reins were slightly looser and the locks temporarily opened. As one of those teenagers that saw and wanted and fantasized, he was just so… confused.

But a fantasy, for that was what it was, was only to remain such. The idea was both immensely arousing and mortifying—but perhaps of all things, impossible, or so Ryou told himself. But perhaps it was Ryou's insistence that the dream could never become reality coupled with his own natural, humanistic needs that created the ball to be set in motion.

Added to the idea that he knew nothing else but the importance of utter control and the idea of his lack of having ever experienced this fore-mentioned control, the whole thing only naturally set the ball on its track.

As for what would ever cause the ball to start on its path and begin its route of seemingly unending destruction remained to be seen.

Meanwhile, the dreams continued to whisper and entice.

A host displaying strong emotions would awaken the parasite. As for other ways that Ryou could call forth the spirit, he had never tried because it had never been his will to do so.

But, as it turns out, Ryou could simply call on the presence of that man to appear simply by desiring it hard enough. It was terribly obvious, yet still something Ryou would have never thought of willingly.

It was all very ironic that the only thing Ryou realized that he controlled was the calling of the spirit who could and would control every movement and word thereafter.

The first time it happened had been right after another one of those dreams, in which those same set of events occurred in ever-deepening detail. Ryou had been distressed afterwards, because he was only human, and the physical effect that the dreams had on him had only gotten increasingly stronger and more acute:

He suddenly wished for that man to appear in a fit of agitation.

And Ryou could feel him stir inside immediately, awakening from the depths of his mind.

Ryou tried to stop the summoning as soon as he realized what was happening, but the spirit, clothed in Ryou's thin shirt and pajama pants like a kind of twisted doppelgänger—a kind of unnatural reflection, really—had already appeared in front of him.

The Ring felt like it burned against Ryou's heaving chest, drawing on the flurry of emotions that flooded its owner.

Ryou stared with wide-eyes at the apparition, because he looked real, with barely the regular, slightly transparent quality to his form at all.

The spirit leered, and cocked his head to the side with a glint in his eye. 'My,' he whispered softly. 'Isn't this a turn of events, host. What's the reason for this call, I wonder?'

His voice sounded nothing like how it did in Ryou's dreams: far too calm, far too sure of himself. It caused an almost unidentifiable anger in Ryou, and an urge to make the spirit act like how he did in those strange, arousing fantasies, though he did not think about it at the time.

Ryou shook his head, heart rate accelerating and the pressure between his legs only intensifying even more. He drew the covers tighter over his abdomen in an attempt to hide himself. "Please go away," he managed to say. "I-I didn't mean to—"

But he had meant to, at the time.

'Why, you called me out, so here I am,' the spirit replied mockingly. 'And this is such a bold move for my little pet.' He suddenly grinned, a wild and damning kind of smile that made the thumping of Ryou's heart still and erection disappear completely. 'Do you want to go for a midnight stroll, little pet? I'm feeling restless myself, now.'

"No, no—" But what was the point in saying so? The spirit had made up both of their minds already.

'But I say we shall.'

The next memory that Ryou could recall was that of the next morning. There was an earthy and coppery scent to his skin, hands stained with what looked like the remnants of dried dirt and a dark red, brittle film that he washed off immediately, no longer even bothering to fight the urge to be sick.

With each episode of loss of control came that dream again, creating a vicious cycle that Ryou could not free himself from. With each dream came his resulting physical response upon waking, and the human, but now bordering on nearly animalistic, sexual frustration that he could not be rid of either.

Everything built and built and built, steepening the track and weighting the ball. Soon, the weight would prove to be too much, and the barriers holding back the ball would inevitably shatter.

The day in which the doors fell away came surprisingly soon:

The spirit rarely let Ryou see through his eyes when the former took over. Sometimes he did it, just to taunt him, but it seemed that he preferred keeping Ryou literally in the dark until the damage was done and he got to see Ryou's reactions of horror and revulsion.

Every time in which Ryou saw everything as it happened undoubtedly made the young man sick and weak afterwards. The very idea of being conscious of every little action down to the last blink and exhale that he could not control was nauseating.

The spirit hasn't done so in a while, however, and perhaps it was sheer boredom that convinced him to give Ryou a glimpse. He had kept Ryou in the blackness of his mind for a while already, twenty minutes or an hour, Ryou was never quite sure. But when Ryou was able to see again, he was still in the figurative backseat, foreign in his own body.

Loud, booming music suddenly erupted in Ryou's eardrums, the distinct bitter smells of alcohol and sex wafted. His eyes showed visions of bodies writhing about to the music on the clearing directly in front of him, and other bodies, mostly in couples but some with more, writhing to their own beat, entranced with each other's company.

Ryou made a pained little whimper at the unfamiliarity of it all, and could feel his lips widen to a cruelly amused grin when the spirit took notice of his reaction.

No, no, no, he didn't want to be here. He panicked when he felt his body move against his will towards the dance floor.

The spirit was thoroughly amused, Ryou could tell. Vicious glee made itself known in the way Ryou could feel his heart beat and legs move—light and leisurely. His steps were confident and sure-footed, arms relaxed—it all felt unnatural.

His arms caught easily around the exposed waist of a sparsely dressed girl, who gave him a flirtatious wink before intertwining her own arms around his neck. Ryou recoiled disgustedly into own body as the spirit turned her about and pressed his hips against the girl' rear. He moved slowly at first before quickening the pace in time with the bass vibrations coming from the speakers.

He was starting to react to the friction, a pleasurable kind of sensation that ran heated courses through his entire being, and it was mortifying, what the spirit was doing—Ryou knew this was nothing more than that man showing him just another way in which he could manipulate his host's body, and it was only all the more entertaining if Ryou became humiliated and ashamed as a result—

He could feel the heat from that girl's skin radiating in his palms as his hands held onto her waist, delicious warmth from a complying body that he—the spirit—was directing.

And Ryou felt something dawn on him then, something that went far deeper than embarrassment and pleasure.

That man relinquished control suddenly, leaving Ryou still pressed up against that girl. Ryou pushed her away immediately, and could barely even hear her sound of annoyance over the thunderous music in the club and the equally deafening buzzing in his head.

He found the exit and barreled out, seeking for fresh air in the humid night that met him.

He could hear the spirit shrieking in laughter from all around him, thoroughly amused, and again, the powerful desire to make those sounds of delight turn into screams of pain flickered as into a slightly more intense flame in Ryou's mind.

He began to run.

He ran and ran, and with each step he took, he tried to outrun and tear away the invisible strings that were attached to him.

Nausea grew, but so did frustration and anger as the laughter refused to cease.

The weight of the ball began to increase exponentially by gathering burden from Ryou's own burdens, which had started to envelop and consume and burn—

He reached home, and ran into his bathroom before finally faltering. The feeling of sickness was gone, and in the absence of that distraction, Ryou turned his head slowly to look at himself in the mirror. A gaunt youth with dilated eyes and clenched fists stared back. He watched his reflection, waiting for his breath and body to still from the exertion of the last several minutes.

But neither his lungs calmed nor his arms stopped shaking, and instead, Ryou's still-buzzing mind flooded with thoughts that finally caught up to him after his run.

He lunged at the items resting below the mirror on top of the sink table surface, pushing them onto the tiled floor with a satisfying swipe. They landed in a heap on the floor, either breaking immediately or rolling away.

Despite knowing that he would regret it, he had done it just because he could.

He had to prove to himself that he could still control something— something that he could still manipulate, that he could affect simply with his presence.

He could feel the spirit inside, resting in a faux air of innocence, reveling in his distress.

Ryou screamed at himself, letting out an ear-splitting cry, and pulled at his hair in sheer frustration. The feeling of long white hair in his grasp that had long been echoed in his dreams was almost pleasing.

He longed to inflict pain.

Vicious hate and resentment assaulted Ryou as he recalled in vivid detail his latest upsetting incident. It twisted and distorted sanity as the craving to make the spirit succumb and surrender roared louder than ever and began to engulf everything in its flames. His loathing for the spirit had never been quite as unrestrained as it was now. It had always been a seething, hidden away kind of abhorrence, but now it broke from the fear that had held it back, that had held everything back.

Hatred and the absolute, unconditional need of retribution replaced fear, ripping the reins and shattering the locks into oblivion.

His human sexual frustration, slightly aggravated as it was by that same encounter, surged and intertwined with the rampant, not-quite-sane thoughts racing across his mind, no longer held back by that same fear that had forced him to keep everything at bay.

Ryou had enjoyed it: the sensation of a vulnerable body that was his to command. He was reacting again to the mere memory of it, and Ryou let out a caustic, inhuman laugh in response. The girl didn't matter; the idea of it did. Reality had shown him this, that the addicting, ecstatic feelings that he had experienced in his dream could be replicated in actuality.

The dream that manifested from the utter yearning for complete and unquestionable power, coiled hotly with twisted lust and looped tightly with the mindset of one who has been pushed over the edge, falling into a never-ending chasm.

He wondered something, curiosity burning in a different kind of fire. Wouldn't it be grand if Ryou could replicate the dream, if he could draw into reality that display of control that not only that man had never thought of, but would also turn everything around as it should?

Ryou was the wielder of the Millennium Ring, after all. He was its master, its owner. He clutched at it now, imprinting its shape into his palm. With the power to imprison souls, what stopped him from fettering the spirit to the human plane indefinitely, where Ryou should remain supreme?

It was nothing short of justification that the one thing that man never paid attention to would cause his downfall.

And as he saw his dawning smile in the mirror—not that spirit's smile, but his own lopsided feral grin that Ryou, himself, could not recognize— Ryou realized now that he very much wanted to reenact that dream in its entirety.

The ball had broken free.

He walked slowly into his bedroom and called the spirit forth.

Author's Note:

I originally meant to post this story in two chapters in its revision, but it ended up not happening that way. The second chapter is still in progress, and there might be a third. The space meant to be the first chapter was essentially a "doorstop" so that the entire story didn't disappear off the face of this site. As such, the notifications for the second chapter are actually referring to this chapter.

The non-consensual aspect of Ryou's fantasies in which he overpowers the spirit is exactly about that: Rape is about power, not love. It's a hard topic to write about, and I'll try to be as careful as possible when explaining it. I would like to hear what you think of this issue in the story.

After writing Bakura as a kind of good-natured, caustic slob in OEAM, it felt kind of off to write his character as a malignant spirit, but hopefully, it worked out.

In other news, I'm happy to be writing again.

If you'd like to, why not leave a comment?