Author Note: Finally found some time to write… Honestly, this idea just came to me like five minutes before writing this (which I whipped up in like forty-five minutes… Hah! Still got it!) and you people were lucky enough to have my spark last long enough for me to punch out a completed chapter. Short yes, but I'm hardly Santa Clause. You'll just have to live with this.


Disclaimer: I do not own Yu-Gi-Oh and in wake of deciding against a typically disclaimer, I added the previously stated. Hah!


Plot: - The profession of a surrogate mother is hard... giving life to pay the bills and getting through another day... it can have its blessings... and its tolls... ...but what if it can lead to something greater? Solid Silent-shipping


Genre: Romance/Family/Friendship/Angst/Drama


Parings:

Seto/Shizuka


Warning: Rated K(plus) (PG) (Parental Guidance Suggested) For slight cursing and situations of emotional pressure—both inwardly and externally.


-Imperfect Paradise (Yamiko)


Bound in Blood and Ink

By Imperfect Paradise


Interlude
Commitment


"I... really do want to see her..."

"I know."

"Its been twelve years... and I..."

"I know dear..."

Shizuka Kaiba's hand clutched the wrist of her opposite arm, staring out the window of the Kaiba manner and biting her lip, while Seto Kaiba watched her from above his newspaper, not even really caring about the details of his stock (which still soared, all the same). He never pitied, but he still showed some form of compassion for his wife of eighteen years.

Eighteen years... had it really been that long? She was only about eighteen when he had come to her. It was at first only a mocking blow to her brother... they had fallen under hard times, with the recent passing of their mother and the the permanent incarceration of their father after his fifth offense. Sure, he had wanted an heir... being twenty-one years old and not being one bit interested in establishing a relationship, that didn't mean he wanted something else to cherishh.. And with his brother eloping with that blonde-haired American twat (whom he still loathed to that day, most likely in abhorrence for her stealing away the only remaining family he had)... it didn't give him a whole lot of options.

Of course, he had only meant it as a joke... and knew she wouldn't agree to his terms at all. He honestly didn't expect that she would actually...


"I'll do it."

Jounouchi spat his coke out way across the room, with some residue landing right on Kaiba's shirt, much to the man's disgust. After regaining his composure, he sputtered, while traces of cola residue still spurted from the edges of his mouth, "Wh-What?!!!"

Shizuka paid not one mind to her brother, and continued to focus on the situation at hand. "That is... I'd love to hear what you'd have to offer in exchange for my... services."

Taking a Kaiba Corp logged handkerchief and wiping the soda off his tie (dammit, right before his meeting with Intel technologies), Kaiba grunted and explained, "You will be properly compensated for both the expenses of carrying and delivering my son, and also paid in general for your commitment to following through."

Shizuka's brow scrunched to some degree. "How much?"

Jounouchi let out a nervous laugh, before grabbing his sister's shoulder and explained, "Uhm... will you excuse us, please?"

Kaiba frowned and stated, as if on business, "One- minute."

Jounouchi took very little time to drag his sister to a secluded area of the room, Shizuka loyally following him. Once they were clear from ear-shot (at least by Jounouchi's standards) the elder brother of the Jounouchi family, looked appalled at his sister and explained, "Look... Shiz--I know we are hard up for cash right now, and that things at the moment aren't going right for the both of us... but god dammit... all the money in the world is NOT worth giving birth to the Anti-Christ!"

Shizuka narrowed her eyes and said, "What did I say about profiling, brother?"

Jounouchi groaned and said apologetically (yet still with desperation), "Sorry, sorry. Look... just gimme one more chance... please! I know I can get that job at the warehouse!"

"Minute's up," Kaiba drawled in a bored sounding tone.

"Just give us one more, alright?!" Jounouchi snapped, looking beyond desperate for a miracle that wasn't going to come anytime soon.

Kaiba then began while gathering up his papers, looking ready to disembark, "Look, I have other people to talk you... it's been fun, but I really don't have time for this." He then stood up, looking ready to leave the conference room, when...

"Two hundred!"

Kaiba stopped in his tracks, looking out ahead of him. After a moment or two, he slowly turned around and inquired, "What?"

Shizuka stared at him, calculatingly and fair-minded. "Two hundred thousand for my services... and you will keep your word on providing the medical expenses. Do I have your word."
"Shiz..." Jou pleaded, pathetically.

Shizuka stiffened for a bit, and began, not looking at her elder sibling, "Katsuya... I know all too well that you're are trying very hard to keep us above the red, but this has gone on far enough. We are running out of time. You know the land-lady won't let us wait another month to submit our rent, and after next week, we won't have anywhere to go. And Yuugi shouldn't have to constantly put up with us." She then looked at her brother pleadingly, and asked him in a begging voice, "Please, big brother... Just let me do this...

Jounouchi stared at her, helplessly, knowing he had lost this battle. His sister was right, even if he did get the job (which in itself, would be a miracle) they would still be homeless the following Sunday.

As much as he hated to admit it, they really didn't have a choice in this at all.

Watching the siblings reason things with each other, Seto Kaiba couldn't help the smirk that slowly painted itself perfectly on his face. This was a practically a win-win situation for him. He would get his son, and that idiot Jounouchi would be rendered helpless. Heck, he would be a fool not to accept this offer. To him, it was worth to much, that if the woman had demanded a sum that had even exceeded over a million, he would still take it. Watch carefully, loser dog, he thought darkly, As I take complete control of your little sister's life.

Setting the paperwork down on his, he retrieved a single document from the pile in one swift perfect motion.... and slowly walked over to her. Removing a pen from his pocket, and clicking it, he handed it to her and sneered victoriously, "Sign here... and we'll be in agreement."

Shizuka didn't hesitate, she didn't stall, and she didn't give another thought of the sentiments of her brother. She took the pen in one swift motion, and signed the document, dating it and initially it within a fraction of a heart-beat.


TO BE CONTINUED


Random Note: Go right ahead. Chastise me… its short, boring and hardly went anywhere…. but its easier for me to submit shorter extensions compared to my other work…. Which most of you people are quite familiar with. (And you find that this way is a lot faster too). Now, I must go and e-mail my teachers so I can find out just how badly I am screwing up my future and maybe kiss someone's butt in the process. So long. (10/23) Fixed a problem with the document manager. (go single space on me?! HAH!)