And already I start a new series. I really have been wanting to write this, though, so I hope it's good. Oh, and I've been lying to you this whole time- I AM KAZUKI TAKAHASHI, AND I OWN YU-GI-OH. Haha, not really, but it would be fun. XD

A whole year. It's passed in the blink of an eye, yet it's been so long.

Why did it even have to happen? Him and me had a whole life together to look forward to, and then it was just ripped away.

Ryou. He went out one night and never came back. Some bastard, with the pull of a trigger, ended his life forever. I clenched my teeth, thinking about it. That had been the longest night of my life.

But the fact was, it was a year ago today. I found myself wandering over to the shelf where I kept all the pictures of us and pulled down a large book. It was dusty because I hadn't been able to bring myself to look at it. And when I opened it up, I realized why I had avoided it all this time. Seeing that smile again brought back a wave of emotions. No. I had to do it; I had to get over it. This was a day that I just had to remember him.

I skimmed through several pages. Ones of us alone, together, with friends… Damn, I forgot just how many times we had our pictures taken. I smiled a little. It was all Ryou's fault- he always wanted to have something to remember some random event by. That was one thing that, at the time, annoyed me, but I guess it really ended up helping me.

With each passing photo, a new memory came to me. Like the time when we first met. Or when we had gone to that amusement park. The day when we had our first kiss. Every little thing, happy and sad, right up to the very end. I flipped back to the start. Now that I had seen even a little bit, I wanted to go through more thoroughly. Really remember every moment.

I started with the one of us right after our paths had initially crossed…

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I was around 12 years old at the time, which would have made him about 10. I was just hanging around in the park after school, where most of us went. Although where everyone else was playing with some other kids, I just sat alone in a corner. I didn't really mind it, though. If anything, I was glad that they left me alone. I had always been a freak in their eyes- my hair color, my rough personality, everything about me just gave me that label, whether I liked it or not.

But when I was standing up to go home, I saw a kid being held against a wall. I heard faint voices coming from their general direction, and he was obviously trying to get away. Normally this kind of thing didn't really concern me, but… there was something about him, that, when I took a closer look, just reminded me of myself. He, too, had long white hair, pale skin, and dark eyes, but it looked much less rough and more childlike on him. He was a little bit shorter, too. I decided to head over.

The tall kid holding him by the collar smirked. "Isn't that cute? Little freak's trying to get away. " He kneed the smaller boy in the stomach, causing him to cry out and collapse, coughing up blood. I clenched my fist and snuck up behind the bully, grabbing his arm and spinning him towards me. He looked surprised for a moment, but then his face twisted back into a mean grin. "Hey, look, this guy's trying to help you! Be grateful, shrimp!" I let out a low growl before I smacked him so hard in the nose, I heard a sickening crack. I had probably broken it. He fell back, blood staining the hands that were clutching his nose.

"You'll stay away from him if you know what's good for you," I growled. "And if you don't, you WILL see me again. Clear?" He nodded in fear, before rising to his feet and stumbling away. I then turned my attention to the victim, who was staring up at me like I was his idol.

"Th-thank you!" he stuttered. I shrugged.

"No problem. But hey, you can't let 'em get to you like that."

He lowered his head. "You're right. This has been going on for a while, so I guess I'm just used to it." Then he looked up at me. "Oh, I'm Ryou. What's your name?"

I stared at him for a moment, then answered. "Bakura. I don't think I've seen you around before."

He grinned. "Well, I hope that we can be friends!" I just kept staring. What was this kid's problem? Nobody wanted to talk to me, let alone be my friend. Even when they did, they were either bullying me or using me. But something seemed… different about him. He gave off a sort of trusting vibe. So I nodded. He smiled widely, and I gave him my hand.

"Here. Let's go." We left the park and walked around town for a while. Turned out neither of us had parents to go back to. After a while, we stumbled upon one of those photo booths. He stopped.

"You know, I've always wanted to try one of these," he whispered excitedly. I sighed and reluctantly pulled out my wallet.

"We can do one, if you want." He smiled hopefully, and we went inside. The first few we took were sort of boring, but after a while we were making weird faces, doing the most random things. That was when I heard him laugh for the first time (although we were both cracking up at that point.)

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I stared at that picture for longer than I'd like to admit. It was one of the funny ones; Ryou had his eyes crossed and his tongue out, while I just had a scary grin on my face. I smiled to myself. Things sure had changed a lot since then, hadn't they?

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Seira-g: I managed to make a long chapter! Yay!

Ryou: … So you killed me again, huh… *Goes to the emo corner*

Seira-g: Yeah, sorry about that.

Ryou: *mutters under breath*

Seira-g: Oh, just tell them to review.

Ryou: Review.

Seira-g: Good!