Chained to Despair

By Lucky_Ladybug

Notes: The characters are not mine and the story is! I've had the idea for a few weeks, but the 31 Days prompt I once ran away from the god of fear and he chained me to despair really pushed it into being.

Ryou Bakura. . . .

Can you hear me?

Of course you can hear me. You can always hear me when I will it. I am the voice in your mind, the spirit of your Millennium Ring.

Yes, I feel your fear. You have always feared me, with good reason. You know what I have done, to both you and your pathetic friends. You know what's being done right now, with the Pharaoh seeking his memories and your friends trapped in the Millennium Puzzle. You tried to stop it from happening, but you failed. Now you feel helpless . . . angry . . . hateful.

You have always tried to fight against me. But your consciousness is locked away and you have little to no knowledge of what your body is doing with me in control.

It would surprise you if I said that in some ways we are not all that different, wouldn't it?

My life is not my own, any more than yours belongs to you. We are both being manipulated by Zorc Necrophades. He is a parasite, feeding on souls. Gradually he absorbs them, becoming the person he has chosen to be.

At the fateful creation of the Millennium Items, he infused part of his soul with the Millennium Ring. As soon as I took possession of it years later, he latched onto my soul, whispering to me, making me believe his will was my own. And believe it I did. He spoke of the revenge I longed for, telling me what to do to have it. I thought it was all my idea. I did exactly what he wanted, being driven mad in the process.

Zorc led me to my death!

He has never left me. For three thousand years he has been taking over my spirit. Even when I believe I am thinking my own thoughts, I am not. I think only what he wants me to think. I say only what he wants me to say. I do only what he wants me to do.

It's gotten worse over the years. I can't remember when I realized my thoughts were not my own. It was sometime after my death, I believe. Those three millennia in the Ring were spent in darkness with only my memories and Zorc's will, entwining, infusing, becoming one. I recall having moments where I was certain that some of the memories were not mine at all. But then I accepted them too; after all, whose memories would they be, if not mine?

There was not much to do in the Ring besides think. Off and on I realized that after acquiring the Millennium Ring, I had said and done things that I could not understand. I questioned it. But whenever I did, the thought came to me that it was ridiculous, I had done what I had needed to do to get my revenge and resurrect Zorc.

Yet . . . had I even wanted to resurrect Zorc? How did I even know what Zorc was?

Somehow I retained enough free will to finally recognize what had happened to me. My mind was so clouded then, I don't know how I managed to do it. Maybe Zorc wanted me to figure it out. Maybe he wanted me to know that he was there and that I would never be my own self again.

In some way, I envy you, Ryou Bakura. You only have your body taken over. Your spirit is still yours.

My body is gone. My spirit is being pulled into the shadows. Eventually I won't exist at all. I will have no sense of self.

Or . . . if Zorc is destroyed, in this battle with the Pharaoh or at any other time . . . will that mean that I am destroyed too?

Either way, I'll be gone. But if Zorc absorbs my spirit until there is nothing left, you won't be free. Zorc will use you until you have served your purpose. Then you will probably die, too.

Of course, dying would be better than this, wouldn't it? You were willing to sacrifice yourself as the Change of Heart card so your friends would be safe and I wouldn't be controlling your body anymore. After all this time, you still feel like that, don't you? You wish to die. I can feel those thoughts.

Other times you want to live. You hate me for interfering with your life. You wish I were gone.

I wish I was gone, too. What kind of existence is this? I don't even know if anything I'm saying right now is my own self. Maybe it's Zorc feeding these thoughts to me. Maybe he wants me to become so discouraged and hopeless that he can take me over completely without any more trouble.

Should we fight to live, Bakura? Or should we abandon all hope and fade away and die?

Hope. Ridiculous. I abandoned all hope years ago. Centuries, millennia ago. There is no such thing as hope. It's a delusion mortals create to make them feel better about their desolate situations.

Something is happening, Bakura. Thanks to his friends---your friends---the Pharaoh has remembered his name and is calling it out. The Egyptian Gods are coming to his aid. And . . . now what's he doing? He's combining them! He's combining all three of them to form Horakhty, the Creator God of Light. Zorc is going to be stopped, just as he was three thousand years in the past.

No . . . it will be different this time. It will be a permanent defeat.

What will happen to me, Bakura? Am I going to be destroyed with him? Your spirit will endure and live on, untouched by this parasite's claws. But I . . . after so long, I am more Zorc than myself. And with his spirit so thoroughly infused with mine, I will never survive his destruction.

Maybe oblivion will be a relief. Do you think so? To just not exist at all. . . . Or maybe it won't be much different than what I've endured for the last three thousand years. I can't truly say I've existed since Zorc claimed my spirit for his vessel.

Of course . . . you won't care, will you? Why should you? After all that I've done. . . . It will be a relief to be rid of me.

The pain. . . . I've never felt anything like this. . . . This is not any sense of release! Zorc's essence is being ripped from mine! My spirit is being torn to ribbons!

What's happening to me?!

Bakura, help me! Help me, Bakura! Please . . .