Chao- It's nice to answer requests asked by readers. Originally, Chao wasn't going to add the part where Yugi confessed about his bullying.
Yugi- Is that because you enjoy torturing me?
Chao- Well of course, but really Chao didn't care much for the idea but later thought it would be best to go ahead and toss it in. Plus, Chao had also allowed for readers to beat up the bullies from the first chapter at the end of chapter seven. So see? Chao ain't that bad of a person…. humanoid…. thing….
Yami- (coming back from beating up bullies) (stretching) I'd have to agree.
YChao- Indeed, but your story still sucks.
/Yami and Yugi's mind link./
Chapter 12: A Love that is Always Around
Underneath a dull street light, Izumi stood out in the empty parking lot of the hospital with his hands in his pocket. Gazing up towards the vast dark sky, he was deep in thought; plenty of questions plagued his mind. He wondered about the game of Duel Monsters he played earlier. He wondered about what had happened to his boss. He wondered about all his peers he had worked side by side with. He figured many of them were already aware of the inevitable bankruptcy and had already gone in search for a new job.
Closing his eyes, he sighed; he now needed to leave and find a new place that would hire him. Despite the troubles he often encountered, he wasn't at all disappointed; he was quite content he had spent time with his son.
"Izumi, is everything ok?" Solomon asked as he entered the parking lot.
Turning around, the man replied truthfully, "Yeah."
He shuffled to the trunk of his banged up car. He pulled up the dented trunk and removed a clean suitcase. As he placed the bag on the ground, he mentioned, "This is Yugi's."
"I'll be sure to bring it back to him." the old man replied. "But are you sure you can't stay around for a bit longer?"
"There are a few places hiring right now. I need to at least try and take them."
"Well, if anything happens, you'll always have a place to stay."
As the game store owner left, Izumi returned his gaze back to the black sky dotted with many stars.
A small smile crept over his face.
Mitsuki had excused herself earlier after the mini episode she had against her ex-spouse. Izumi and Solomon had left Yugi's room to allow the youngest member of the Moto family to rest in peace. As they did, the younger man could have sworn he heard his child speaking to himself in an odd manner, similarly as he had done earlier at the restaurant. He decided it was for the best to just let it go.
"Are you heading out now?" Solomon asked.
"Yeah." the younger man nodded.
"Well, don't get into an accident." the old man chuckled.
"Maybe if I do, then I'll get to spend even more time next to Yugi in the hospital." Izumi laughed in his reply as he walked away. As he made his way to the exit, he saw Mitsuki standing outside the door. Izumi stepped out and said to her, "Well, I'll see you around."
He was about to persist when he felt someone grab him by his wrist with two slender hands. Glancing down, he noticed his ex-wife held on to him. He looked into the woman's eyes. The soft, brown irises were quite crestfallen as oppose to raw anger.
"Mitsuki?" he questioned with concern.
"Are you leaving already?" the woman asked.
"Yeah, I need to." Izumi explained.
"So, what… Are you just going to leave without saying goodbye?" Mitsuki questioned with a bit of shaky voice. "Like you did before all those years back?"
Izumi took a moment to think about what had been said. He recalled he was the one who felt he needed to leave. With all his changes and loses in work, he strongly believed he would not be a good enough father towards his son. Unable to think of a proper response, he only replied, "I need to go."
"No, you don't!" Mitsuki tried to argue.
"But I need to."
"If I don't, then who's going to go get Yugi's stuff from the motel?"
"Wait, wha?" Mitsuki became confused about what had just been brought up. Looking towards her ex-husband, Izumi smiled lightly and informed, "I need to get Yugi's and my stuff from the motel. I'll be back when I drop off his stuff."
The woman with short maroon hair immediately released her husband. She turned around with her own face red as she replied quietly, "Oh."
"Mitsuki, I-" Izumi was about to add something when his ex-spouse shouted in a stubborn voice, "Save it for your green porcupines!"
"Actually, it's been purple wombats now." the man corrected, only to be punched in his arm by Mitsuki.
Just before the man was about to head off, he felt something in his pocket. He took out the object and remembered he still carried with him his son's deck. Looking around, he tried to locate the old man. However, Solomon had already entered the hospital with his grandson's bag. Quickly as he could, Izumi raced out so he could return the precious cards that belonged to his only child.
When he finally arrived at Yugi's room, he saw Solomon waiting outside, still holding on to the boy's suitcase. Izumi walked closer and asked, "Um, Solomon?"
The old man gazed over and smiled quite pleasantly. He pointed towards the room without uttering a single word.
Izumi carefully peeked into the hospital room where his son lied in. In the same room he had been moments ago, there were now two other males and one female. One of the boys had messy gold hair while the other had straight brown. The girl had short brown hair as well. The patient with tri-color was fully awake with a large smile across his face as he laughed with pure bliss.
Izumi's heart overflowed with joy as the sound of his child giggling entered his ears.
"Did you need something else?" Solomon asked after a brief moment of silence.
"I only needed to give Yugi his deck back." Izumi explained. "These are the same ones I had used in my duel. They are quite powerful. Guess he managed to create a great deck."
"Are you going to go in?" the old man questioned, with a soft smile.
The man remained quiet for a bit, and then replied, "No, could you give this to him for me?"
"Of course." the elderly man answered as accepted the stack of cards.
After handing the pack over, Izumi looked into the room once again.
"Anything else?" Solomon asked as he noticed the younger man appeared lost in thought.
"I only wanted to ask my son something." Izumi began more to himself. "… But I think I already know what it was…"
The man walked away. He was aware many people would have only seen three teens in the same hospital room visiting a friend, but Izumi was well aware there were actually four beings visiting his son at that very moment.
I hope everything has been able to go well. I'll be heading out to find more places for a job. Now don't beat yourself over because of what happened with Zuri. He was the one who set the trap for himself. I would much rather live with a homeless man for a roommate in cardboard box on the cold streets than work for a man who caused harm to you. Wait, scratch that last note; don't worry yourself over me and how soon I will find a job.
Anyways, don't worry about what your mother will say about all this. I'll find a way to explain everything to her. We don't need to have her worry over you (it may also be a good idea if she doesn't see this particular letter as well).
I hope you had been able to keep up with your homework; as we both know, we don't need to worry your mother over your grades. But I also hope you're able to do well with your deck. I have full confidence in you, my son, who is also King of Games. Just don't put your guard down; otherwise, those mummies will be after your Puzzle, your good luck charm, and friend.
Let's hope though that I'll get a job closer to Domino. I'll send another letter when I get the chance. But just remember that your father, mother, grandfather, and your friends will always be there for you when you need us. To help you stand up when you are knocked down and laugh at your mistakes after you've been too arrogant.
Loving you always,
Your clumsy and caring father
"You just worry about your weddings on the moon." replied a young adult's voice to himself.
Standing in a city park, Yugi smiled greatly as he reviewed his torn, handwritten letter with a dried out coffee stain in the corner he received in the mail. Even if nothing went as expected, he was quite glad he had been with his father. He may not have been able to say farewell to the man he cared for, but he understood the reason behind it.
He was also content for knowing all his training not only paid off for the dreaded Sports Festival, but he was able to handle himself better with his extra strength. He hoped he would have time training for his Duel Monster tournaments while staying strong for his physical education and events. He was happy he had friends to help him out in both categories.
"Yo Yug!" Joey called out to his zoned out friend. "You got it?"
"Yeah," the teen nodded when he returned to pleasant reality. He went through his brown backpack and pulled out an orange Frisbee with blue paint splattered on along with sloppy glitter.
Tea smiled as she asked, "Is that the one we painted together in our school festival when we were younger?"
"Yup!" Yugi proudly answered.
He and his childhood friend had decorated the toy when they were kids. Normally items like that had been kept in the attic, but because Yugi had made it with his companion, he kept it in his room hidden far back in his closet. He was quite glad he was finally able to take it out and play it with someone, like the friends he had wished for.
"This is great," Tristan remarked ecstatically. "At least now we'll have something to do in case the Spider Arcade is closed, like it is today."
"I can't wait to see its new design!" Yugi shouted with joy. He looked towards the green grass and thanked quietly, "I'm really happy you guys were able to see me when I was in the hospital."
"You sound surprise." Tea giggled.
The small teen smiled, "Well, it was further up north from where we all live."
"Don't sweat it Yug." Joey assured. "We'll always be there for you."
/Your friends truly care about you./ Yami joined in. He grinned a bit as he added, /As does your family./
"Yeah, thanks everyone." Yugi smiled.
The group of adolescents spent the afternoon playing with the round toy.
Chao- And it's over!
YChao- Thank you for taking your sweet time on this.
Chao- Yeah, Chao will make it up to readers.
Yugi- How? This is the last chapter!
Chao- Indeed, but there is this little thing called a "sequel".
Chao- Yeah, Izumi was too much fun to just end him there.
YChao- Hey, be glad he isn't the abusive type either.
Chao- Thanks for reading! If anything had been left out, it'll be explained in the next story… hopefully… Please review!