AU fic… sort of. It's pretty much the cannon except Malik's father was never killed so he's still underground as a teenager. There's more, but it's in the story…

Trapped

I wish I understood why.

I wanted to disappear – for the two of us to go back to our normal lives. Realizing what I had just thought, I smirked.

Normal.

Since when has my life been normal?

I reached behind me, scratching at the scars that were engraved into my flesh. They only itched when I got nervous.

Oh lord, had I really blown it…

I would get caught. The authorities, someone – they would find out eventually. This isn't something they would brush over easily, either – this was a major crime.

I will go to prison –

A shriek escaped from my throat, a mixture of the fear and hatred that had been brewing up inside me.

My life was a prison.

My home, my family… all was meant to keep me in.

Would the police show me any mercy for that? They won't care…

But did I show mercy? What made me do this to him –

Stir crazy, I guess…

Hehe, crazy…

The laughter breathed out of my throat and I did nothing to stop it.

He won't tell.

It became louder and louder, echoing down the empty halls.

He can't tell.

My body shook violently as the laughter continued.

He won't… he can't…

What will I do?

What can I do?

Kill him.

No.

No, then there will be a body.

Bodies…

Bodies intertwined in sweaty heat and passion. The feel of moving inside someone, the empowerment that came with owning them… could be matched only by their moans of ecstasy and begging for more.

The two of them… together… never touched and never been touched… wasn't this worth it?

Malik stood up from his corner and sauntered back into the bedroom where his new partner was still sleeping. His shoes were lying where he had thrown them – in the pile of clothes, save for the pants he had put on when he had left the room.

His partner was a heavy sleeper… he hadn't even moved when Malik got up.

The teenager walked over and began examining the other boy. The faintest smile lingered on his lips, which sent a small form of "relief" throughout Malik. He looked so peaceful sleeping, completely unlike himself when he was awake.

Malik gently ran his fingers through the boy's spiky blond hair, thinking about how they had met that day…

Malik had run away from home again – this boy was escaping a gang fight. They bumped into each other, rather shocked at the sight of one another, since the two looked very similar. Quickly this surprise was forgotten as the gang members charged through the alleyway.

The spiky-haired boy took off, leaving Malik standing there in confusion. Suddenly it dawned on him that the ruthless horde might mistake him for the other boy, so he rushed to follow.

Neither of the two were overly muscular, which would have made brawling a difficult task, but it eased the act of running away.

The other boy was much faster than Malik, but then again, he wasn't trapped underground throughout the years. Malik struggled to keep up and ran out of breath all too soon. But his fear of the gang members and curiosity of this look-alike pressed him on.

He maintained focus on his speed, and mostly kept his eyes on his feet and the other boy's shadow – he didn't even notice the spiky-haired boy constantly peeking over his shoulders to glance back at him.

Malik was lead to this abandoned house-like building that the other boy claimed to be his hiding place. How anyone could consider a run-down construction that was barely hidden from the city to be a qualified hiding spot was beyond Malik. Regardless, he followed the boy inside and up the stairs.

They entered a small room with nothing to furnish it, with the exception of an old mattress. The spiky-haired boy took a seat on it and invited Malik to do the same.

Malik was somewhat hesitant at the offer – he had only followed the boy in a moment of panic… now he was starting to regret his decision.

The other boy tilted his head and smiled. He looked like a crocodile that had just spotted its prey. This sent a shiver down Malik's spine and yet – something…

Swallowing his instincts, he sat down.

The boy introduced himself as Mariku. Malik told his name, and then proceeded to ask questions. Who were those gang members, and why were they after him?

Maintaining his grin, Mariku explained that he had no home and family… he was living on the streets and doing so often stirred up trouble with the local fugitives who believed this to be "their town".

He explained that he only came to this hiding spot on rare occasions, so the location wouldn't easily be revealed. Mostly he slept under old tents or behind closed stores and sometimes he even broke into houses, as long as he got out before anyone woke up.

Malik asked how long he had been living this way, but Mariku replied that he had no calendar and therefore wasn't sure… but judging by the seasons, a few years at the least. He continued by saying that it was a hard adjustment at first, but he grew to except it after he realized that he lived outside the law.

He could do whatever he wanted.

Malik asked if he had ever been outside of the village, but Mariku responded no.

This raised some questions… the fact that the two looked so much alike and that they were both from the same village seemed too much of a coincidence. Yet Malik kept this to himself. He was rather impressed with Mariku's boldness of fulfilling this lifestyle, but to the spiky-haired boy, it was just normal.

The teenager began to ponder what it would be like to live as Mariku did… no home, no responsibilities – just the simply act of living. No one to say what destiny was meant to be his, no restrictions… everything he did was of his own free will.

Free…

Malik's back started to itch.

"Where are you from, Malik?" Mariku asked. It was unclear whether he had meant to be polite or sarcastic – he always spoke low, almost in a whisper, and quick. It took Malik a moment to realize what he had been asked.

He began to explain that he was a tomb keeper – something lit up in Mariku's eyes, as if he had heard of that title before. He told Mariku about his family's traditions and the scars on his back.

Lost in his train of thought, Malik didn't notice Mariku stand up and grab a handful of his shirt until it was half way up his torso. Malik gasped, but… didn't struggle… as Mariku pulled the item of clothing off and tossed it to the side. He ran his hands across the scars, and traced their patterns lightly with his fingers.

It tickled, slightly; Malik fought back the natural urge to shiver. His back started itching far worse than before. He wanted to swat Mariku's hands away and scratch until it bled – or ask if Mariku would scratch until he bled.

Instead he felt a sigh leave his lips. On an average basis, Malik hated anyone touching his scars… they were a reminder of the weight he had to bare. But now… he was practically welcoming Mariku's touch.

Mariku…

They had only just met and yet Malik felt some form of connection. Not necessarily to the boy himself, but rather… what he was. There was something about him that Malik recognized.

This boy… he was everything Malik wasn't.

He was brave; he lived a life Malik didn't have the backbone for.

He was… free.

Anger began to rush through Malik's body. He started to shiver, forgetting himself. Mariku must not have noticed, because he continued stroking Malik's scars.

You…

How dare you…

Why did he get everything Malik had always wanted? What made him so special?

All his life, Malik had prayed for freedom… for this family curse to somehow be lifted and he could start all over.

And now this boy… Mariku…

He belonged to himself. He was owned by no one and lived his life the way he wanted to. The constant pattern of danger didn't bother him – it's what made his life so exciting.

And Malik wanted it.

No… Malik wanted him.

He turned to look at Mariku, who still gave him that small smile. There was something sinister inside that tiny grin… but it made Malik want him all the more.

"Mariku…" he whispered.

"Malik."

His tone never changed… always the same with that low-spoken voice.

The teenager wrapped his arms around the spiky-haired boy, pulling him in for a kiss. Mariku responded, but only just so. As if it were his duty to be doing these things.

It wasn't until Malik started undressing him that a flash of excitement appeared in Mariku's eyes.

Touch me here, touch me there…

You don't love me.

You hurt me.

A heated knife to flesh…

A bad touch.

No more.

No more.

I don't want bad touches, I want good touches.

Make me feel good – take the pain away.

Please.

Don't hurt me.

Malik lay there, staring at the ceiling. Mariku was asleep, having fallen into nearly right after the climax. Well, Malik's climax, at least…

The teenager scooted over, resting against his hand and relying on his elbow to keep him upright as he looked over his new partner. He slept so soundly… of course, living the way he did, Malik highly doubted this sort of thing was new to him. Poor boy.

Malik, on the other hand… had never…

This was all too much.

Impulse.

That's what it was – pure impulse.

He had carefully calculated his escape from the prison known as home. Weeks were spent going over every detail, ensuring his departure and eventual return would remain secret. He was very fortunate to have caring siblings who understood his desire and were his only reason for going back.

Yes, he paid attention to every, tiny detail…

And for what?

So he could run after and lose his virginity to a boy he had just met? A boy, even…

Impulse.

Always on impulse.

"Dammit…" Malik muttered to himself as he propped off the mattress before walking over to his clothes. He pulled on his pants and crept out, looking back to make sure his partner was still sleeping.

He headed down the stairs and into what appeared to have once been a family room. The moonlight was his only guide to a nearby corner where he fell over. He wrapped himself into his knees, allowing the tears to pour down his face as he began to sob.

"W-why…?"

Malik clutched his stomach as he suppressed the urge to vomit. How could he…

What if he got some sort of STD from this? What if Mariku expected to do this again… what if he hunted Malik down just to get more…?

What if… Malik… wanted more.

It felt good.

It did feel good…

So good…

Malik had been the powerful one for a little bit.

Was that one time enough?

When would he get this opportunity again?

Mariku's hands… Mariku's hands all over the scars…. The only one to touch them…

His hands had been… surprisingly gentle. A little rough from callous, but that was to be expected, all things considered…

Mariku…

He had everything Malik wanted.

He was everything Malik wanted to be.

And… Malik had owned him.

No.

Malik did own him.

Mariku was his.

For as long as he wanted.

Malik glanced out the window. It was dark outside, the day had ended long ago. There was no way his escape would go unnoticed at this point. He supposed someone would be out looking for him, if they weren't beating his siblings, that is.

He started pacing as he wondered how and when he would return home. There was sure to be pain once he got back, not to mention that at this time in the night street crime would be far worse. But would it be worse than Malik's father if he didn't arrive until morning?

His home… his prison…

Why did he want to go back?

Because of his siblings…

Would they be alright? Would his father truly kill them? Probably, if Malik never showed up. But then again, although Rishid was loyal to the entire Ishtar family, it was unlikely that he would merely sit back and allow his master to finish off him and Ishizu.

Do I even care…?

He would leave it. Isn't that what he wanted – to start a new life? Why not now… why not with Mariku?

It could be just the two of them, running throughout the streets, sleeping in strangers' houses, having sex in old buildings because the fact that they looked so much alike didn't bother him anymore… and they would be free.

But Malik would be the one in charge, because Mariku was his.

With these thoughts in mind, he headed back up the stairs and into the dark bedroom. Mariku was sleeping peacefully. Malik smiled slightly as he looked at his new toy.

He bent over the pile of clothes and removed his pants.

"Usually they take all their clothes and then never come back."

Malik jolted at the sound of the voice. He quickly calmed himself as he turned to face Mariku.

"You're quite the actor…"

The spiky-haired boy was sitting up in the bed now, his torso revealed and reflected in the moonlight from the window.

"They don't hurt you as much… when they think you're asleep. Mostly they just rob you… but if they don't hurt you, then you can always get back what's yours."

"Get back what's yours…" Malik repeated before he dropped his pants onto the floor.

"But you're not here to rob me, are you Malik?"

The teenager started to saunter back over to the bed. "No. You don't own anything I want."

Mariku's eyes narrowed but his smile widened. "I know what you want." Hysterical giggles started to leak out his lips. "But you can't have it."

Malik stopped in his place.

"What?"

Mariku still continued to giggle.

"Why did you follow me, Malik? Huh? Were you scared? Were you curious? Please tell me."

"I, uh… both, really…" Malik was at a loss for words. He flexed his fingers, strongly fighting the urge to scratch his scars.

"But you didn't have to come here. We outran the gang, you could've gone home."

Mariku said that last word with bitter sarcasm. Almost as if he knew he was mocking Malik's actions.

He probably did…

"Home," Malik replied, more to himself that Mariku. "I have no home. Nor do I want one."

The laughter continued.

"You're fun, you know that, Malik? But I know what you want. And you can't have it."

Laughing.

Laughing.

Mariku was laughing.

Laughing at Malik… laughing at him!

Red. Everything was red for a brief moment of time. Malik's hands clenched into fists…

"Shut up!"

He punched Mariku clear across the jaw. That stopped the laughing, but Mariku still wore his smile.

"You can't tell me what I can't have!"

Mariku closed his eyes.

"Oh… Malik…" He stood up, making the covers fall from him. Now the two were standing, facing each other, completely naked.

"I live the way I do…" Mariku continued. "Because of people like you. People who think they can own me. But they can't. And I'm not yours. I'm mine."

Anger and hatred boiled inside Malik once again. He had just about enough of all this big talk from such a small person.

Who was he to deny Malik's desires? Who was he to tell him…

The truth.

No.

With one hand, Malik slapped the ten-year-old back onto the bed.