MBP: I'M ALIVE! ...Yeah, I have issues. Not to mention, I have these evil voices in my head, that you may have heard about if you've read some of my other things...

Rini: Hi!

Kio: H-hello...

MBP: Anyways, I'm sorry for not writing... I have reasons, I swear! Reason One: Writer's Block. It sucks. Seriously. Reason Two: My mom helped me clean my room, and she put all the stuff I had written for this in a folder I would never look in because it had some things I don't look at. So, I couldn't find it, and I just couldn't get the will to rewrite the stuff I wrote...

Rini: But she like, found it this morning!

MBP: And the writing urge came back! And hopefully, I can get these chapters up again! Oh yeah, I get a MarikxMana video now! Mwahaha!

Kio: ...Isn't this a vaseshipping fic?

MBP: Yes, but I like Staffshipping too, and I get a vid for it now! Haha, anyways, hope you enjoy! I own nothing! I wish I did, because if I did, 4Kids would never have made those stupid edits to it! Mwahahahahaha!


Chapter Five

Atemu put his hands over his head, pretending to give up. He really hoped they fell for it, because having seven knives pointed at him was not very comforting.

"So this is the guy asking all the questions," the obvious leader sneered, jabbing at Atemu. "Doesn't look like much, does he?"

"Definitely not the normal rat," another agreed, earning a chorus of nods from the rest of the group.

Rat? Atemu had no idea what they were talking about. He really should have tried to learn common slang before he came here.

"Trying to help the guards is a serious crime around here boy," the leader growled, raising the knife he held higher, ready to strike. "Us street rats stick together."

I should have expected this... Idiot! Atemu made a note to scold himself later and braced himself for a fight. Ducking to avoid a stab, he disarmed one of the men and blocked another knife.

"Ouch!"

The sound of a scuffle came from behind him, and Atemu risked a glance backwards to see Bakura disarming three of the men. He was standing on the one Atemu had disarmed first.

"Weakling." Atemu wasn't sure if Bakura was insulting him or the man on the ground.

"B-Bakura!" The leader and the men flanking him were terrified. Apparently Bakura was more than just a normal teenager, to be able to frighten grown men.

Mana was also there, caught between the two men by their leader, kicking at their legs as they held onto her arms. Not the best position to be in if the way Bakura glared death threats was any indication.

"Let her go," Bakura growled, flames in his eyes. "Then leave, and don't let me see you again."

The men dropped Mana and ran away, looking back once to check that Bakura wasn't following them to try killing them.

Mana giggled as soon as they were out of sight, looking pleased. "Wow, Bakura, that's a new record! Normally you need a threat in there too!"

"Damn it Mana, I told you to stay hidden!" Bakura snapped, his eyes sharpened from anger.

"You didn't even want to help him!" Mana protested, hiding behind Atemu, cowering behind him. Bakura even scared her sometimes.

"Um... Thank you..." Atemu said, looking at Mana, who grinned at him.

"Her idea," Bakura muttered.

"He doesn't like nobles or royals," Mana whispered in Atemu's ear. "Don't take it personally, okay?"

"Why is he here?" Bakura snapped.

"I don't know. Why are you here?" Mana was so bright and cheerful... unlike her companion. Not like that was too hard. Atemu thought Seto was more cheerful than Bakura and Seto... well, Seto was Seto.

"I was trying to find you two," Atemu moved away from Mana, hoping it would stop Bakura from glaring so much. It didn't work.

"Why?" Mana prodded, poking him.

"I... don't really know..." he replied slowly. Atemu really didn't know. They were just commoners that had snuck into his palace. He shouldn't have snuck out because they really weren't special. But he'd felt compelled to come out and find them... plus, Mana intrigued him, but he couldn't really say that in front of Bakura.

"Then I'll be going. Come on Mana." Bakura climbed onto the roofs and disappeared.

"I'm sorry he's so grouchy!" Mana apologized bowing a little. "He's not normally so bad! He can actually be really funny!" She was still laughing and grinning when a troop of guards came and grabbed her.

"Hey!"

"Mana!" Atemu drew back his hood and faced the guards. "Release her immediately!"

"Your Highness!" Mana rolled her eyes. Yes, it was the prince, so they could let her go now! She wriggled uselessly, trying to loosen their grips. Stupid guards with freaking grips of steel!

"Release her," Atemu ordered again coldly. "Now."

"I-I'm sorry Your Highness, b-but this girl is a suspected assassin," One guard replied nervously, not looking too sure about what he was saying. "W-we've been ordered to t-take her in for interrogation."

"I believe my orders hold more weight than anyone else's," Atemu replied, sounding even more cold.

"Y-Your Highness..." Atemu glared, noticing that the guards still hadn't loosened their grip on the girl, only tightened it so she couldn't slip away.

"Who gave you the order?" Atemu asked, intending to make sure that they wouldn't be giving any more orders anytime soon.

"L-Lord Aknadin..." With that, they proceeded to drag Mana away, keeping her bound, even though she wasn't causing any trouble. As Atemu followed them, he noticed Mana glance at the roofs and shake her head subtly in warning.

She wasn't an assassin, Atemu knew that much. Anyone could tell that she had never killed anyone before, and probably had never been involved in anything more serious than theft.

It was time to have a talk with his advisor...

() () () () () ()

"The girl is in the dungeons," Yugi said, standing near Aknadin loyally. Atemu had come in as soon as he returned to the palace, and told Aknadin to release the girl, but Aknadin had said she was already being interrogated and would be released before night fell if she was truly innocent. Atemu hadn't looked too convinced, but Lady Tea had appeared and he was duty-bound to entertain her.

"You are sure she is the one?" Aknadin asked the boy, leading him out of the room and to the dungeons.

"She is exactly as you described," Yugi replied, following his master as Aknadin disguised himself as an old cripple.

"Good... I will return by morning. Let no one enter my chambers."

"Of course Master." Yugi bowed low, almost touching the ground, and did not rise until Aknadin had disappeared into the inky darkness of the dungeons.

() () () () () ()

Bakura raged angrily around the house he shared with Mana and Ryou, shoving food and clothes into a bag as he barked orders to his younger brother.

"There's money in the cabinet, you know where the food is, don't steal, get to work, don't cause trouble, don't leave any doors unlocked, stay inside after dark, don't attract attention... where the hell did she hide my damn knives?" Bakura was on a full rampage as he tore through their home looking for his weapons.

"I-I think they're in your mattress..." No sooner had Ryou spoken, Bakura had torn his mattress apart and received two deadly knives hidden inside. His eyes had a murderous gleam in them that always scared Ryou whenever he saw it. It reminded him too much of a past they were both starting to get past.

Bakura didn't even say anything as he began to exit the home.

"W-where are you going?" Ryou called nervously as his brother's aura grew darker and more deadly with each step. Bakura sent him a stare that sent chills down Ryou's spine. It was too calm, though Ryou could see the pure fury in his brother's eyes.

"I'm going to get Mana back."


MBP: Sigh... and it's done... Hope you enjoyed!

Rini: Review please! They make our authoress happy, and with her schedule, she needs as much help as possible!

MBP: Gee, thanks so much... anyways, hope you enjoyed again!

Kio: Jaa nee!