Into Oblivion: Nightmares Of The Virtual World
Seto and Mokuba are digitally trapped within a unique super computer that has remained a secret from the world for years. With the burden of the innocent-minded and gullible Yugi Moto and friends in tow, the Seto Kaiba struggles to keep safe under the constant threat of Noah and Gozaburo, and to break free from this isolated world of twists and turns. Chances for escape are slim when reality is what Gozaburo makes it, and often he makes it cruel. The undead billionaire hides behind his secret son, Noah, who relishes his role of sick trickster and reigns down unending terror upon his father's captives. Love him or loathe him, you'll find it hard to keep your eyes off the green-haired monster child.
Aggravated and out for revenge, Seto has more than enough to deal with as the truth of his impossible situation keeps transforming before his eyes, yet he protects his brother at all costs with unyielding devotion. But when the brothers are cruelly separated things take a devastating turn. Mokuba is in serious danger, and Seto endures special hardships that no one, not even his little brother, is to know about.
But the worst is yet to come; no matter what he predicts, nothing can prepare Seto for his greatest ordeal. And inevitably, you will be dragged in to share it with him …
Think of a dark, deep universe in which all around you is saturated in black nothingness. Your eyes feel closed although they are wide open. Hopelessly you listen and wait; for sounds, scents, the brush against you skin that might revive you from your coma. No familiar voices seek you out. You have been forgotten. This is oblivion. This is your nightmare. So to all you readers out there, you better be prepared, because I'm about to twist your mind like a pretzel…
Author's Note: There's enough action, strife and emotional tangles to have your stomach churning, plus a hidden sex scene or two, and above all, there are shocks that keep urging you closer to the shattered twist right at the end of this killer pretzel knot. Often taken from Seto's perspective, iltalicsed words are his thoughts. For those of you who take no interest in the repetitive dueling of the Virtual World Ark anime, here there is none.
Additional Genres: Action, Romance, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Humor, Mystery, Angst.
Disclaimer: Yu-Gi-Oh! is the intellectual property of Kazuki Takahashi.
Rating: M (Themes of sexual, mental and physical abuse are prevalent.)
Chapter 1 : A Familiar Setting
He walked like no other would; angrily gliding over the long stretch of soft, white sand; his boots sinking in a little each step. He was disgusted by the flashy display of nature; the landscape, bathed in pure orange light from the glow of the setting sun; the cool waves, rolling onto the wet shoreline.
"So fake," he muttered under his breath, completely unimpressed. Seto Kaiba was never content with anything as a general rule, not unless he had tested it to its very limits, first. But this place was the exception. He had created it, but now despised it intensely. Here was his own, yet it was unfamiliar, and out of his control -something he had thought of and designed all on his own, that was now being used to screw him over. He hated that. But this was all a waste of time. Soon, that kid would see that...Noah was probably watching them right now.
Seto would not crack. He would let Noah do that for him. He was weak, emotional and spoilt by the looks of things…So it really didn't make sense how all this could be put together by one whiney little child. The Big Five could be organising things, but they didn't have the computing knowledge or even the intelligence to carry out successful plans. Besides, they seemed to be at Noah's beck and call. Just dogs to their master, Seto decided.
The program was to the core, his design, but who had taken his old idea and set up this whole world? It was based on his program, but he had never seen something so vast or complex before. Far from impressed, Seto was silently livid. Who was the fool who dared to ground his aircraft and keep him here? Not Noah, no. Someone with real power must be behind all of this, pulling Noah's strings. He had to know who.
What the hell did they want with him? Perhaps Noah, or the power behind him, wanted the Duellist title for themselves? Fat chance, Seto laughed internally. If that brat knew what was good for him, he would quit the damn mind games and face him like a true opponent, Seto thought. But that Noah brat seemed a coward, and cowards always squirmed and writhed so desperately to get away from true confrontation. They liked to stand predictably back and watch from safety, while their front men did their dirty work for them. But in time, Seto would dispose of the Big Five too, and then lunge his vengeful grip right around that brat's throat. He would make him squeal, just like the coward he was. Then he would find out exactly who was behind this, and they would pay dearly for disrupting Seto's Battle City Tournament just when he was about to arrive at his Duel Tower, and take his rightful place as the number one duellist back from Yugi Moto.
"Yugi…" Another weakling that needed taking care of. All in time, Seto reassured himself. He was always under total control, no matter what went crashing down around him.
From behind Seto, a short creature with a wild mane of black hair whirred past him. Seto's eyes momentarily widened, and then he remembered that he was not alone.
"Mokuba…Mokuba!" the figure stopped obediently as Seto called, "Slow down. We don't know what's ahead of us."
"Yes, Nii-sama. …I'm just so sick of this," his little brother's head sunk.
"Oh, you mean this?" Seto gestured to the sunset before them in a falsely upbeat tone, "Noah's just putting on a show for us, you should be grateful that he gave us a change of scenery."
Seto's words were laden with sarcasm; the rare kind he indulged in only with his brother. It was as close as he got to cracking jokes. Ever. But Mokuba was too frustrated to laugh, and stomped into the sand with his little trainers, "I don't want to be on a virtual beach, or in a virtual forest, or even in a virtual amusement park! I want outta here!"
Seto merely walked on by, causing Mokuba to halt his protest in embarrassment. He remembered- a Kaiba should know better. He ran over his big brother's large boot prints and came at his side, attempting to make amends, "I'm sorry, Nii-sama."
"Listen, don't get upset. Don't let anything here get to you. Otherwise Noah has won. He wants us to break down. But that won't be happening….I can assure you!" Seto called up to the sky, a fierce glare drawn over his intimidating features, "I know what you want, but you will be sadly disappointed, Noah! I don't think you know just who you're dealing with!"
Mokuba whispered from below, startled by his brother's harsh cry, "You…you really think he can hear us?"
"Of course he can. He's watching us right now. That why everyone's been brought here, Mokuba. To stew while he takes him time to work on me. I'm the one he wants," Seto spoke in bitter confidence.
"That doesn't make any sense. What does a random stranger want with you? And…the others are trapped too. I wonder where they are right now…" Mokuba pondered in concern. As he drew his hand to his tiny chin to think of the possibilities, Seto raised his arm to point out something in the distance. It was a large portal door, just like all the others before it. These designs were so typically repetitive.
"Well, there's only one way to find that out. It seems we are wanted elsewhere, Mokuba," he strode forward and motioned for his little brother to follow. As he held the door open and Mokuba slipped through, Seto turned to face the sun-setting world. He hoped nothing so garishly pretentious was waiting for them on the other side.
And there was no such eventuation. A silver and grey cityscape greeted their eyes, filled with skyscrapers and long empty streets. It looked like they were on the fringe of a central business district to him, as they were in the middle of old industrial and residential buildings. Just as they turned to explore down a main street, Seto heard a high voice call out from the direction of nearby warehouses, "Mokuba, did that sound like that Tea girl to you?"
"Yea, I heard her too," Mokuba smiled.
If the group had met with Noah, then Seto might be able to find a way to reach him too.
"Let's go," Seto started forward at fast pace, and his brother kept up with his long strides. Mokuba was a good runner thanks to him, he smirked. They made their way through wide rows of warehouses, paying attention for the shrill girlish voice. But it had stopped. There were no new sounds…apart from that light thudding that echoed faintly from above the back of Seto's right. It was coming from the rooftops. His eyes narrowed. They were being followed.
No more games, damn it.
He spun around violently and shouted in his deepest voice, " SHOW YOURSELF!"
They peered at the rooftops and saw that their stalker was none other than, "Tristan? Whoa, how did you get up there? Are the others ok?" Mokuba said, racing forward to get a better look at him. But there was no need. Tristan managed with supernatural skill, to leap down gracefully and raise a smooth aluminium bat at the boy, all in one fluid movement.
"Mokuba!" Seto dived towards his brother and cleared him just in time. Both their ears rung from the piercing sound of hard metal, reverberating from being slammed mercilessly into the concrete ground behind them. As Seto clung to his brother by the waist, Tristan rose and came forward to take a swing at them. Seto quickly lowered his brother and pushed him firmly out of the way. He turned back just in time to glance off a blow from Tristan with his metal arm cuffs. Anybody who thought those were just for fashion was a fool.
"Tristan, what the fuck do you think you're doing?" he growled at the young man through gritted teeth.
"I am not who you think I am," the Tristan spoke back in a deep, foreboding tone. He grinned maliciously, causing Seto to raise an eyebrow. That expression couldn't be normal. Not even for one of Yugi's moronic fan club members. No, this really wasn't Tristan.
The look-alike wasted no time in lunging again.
"Well then-" Seto blocked another heavy hit, "Who the fuck-" he swung back a fist at the Tristan, "are you?"
"Ohhh, I am here for my revenge, Kaiba! The one you've been escaping from for far too long…now, taste this!" the enemy hissed, taking a side-swipe at Seto's ribs with the bat. Seto raised his arms and leapt back in time, his speed and lightness of foot easily evading the bulkier frame of 'Tristan'.
"Nii-sama!" Mokuba's shriek resounded against the warehouse walls. His brother was in trouble.
"Stay back, Mokuba!" Seto's heart was pounding. For a virtual stimulation this was pretty real, so he assumed the pain would be very real…He had to fight. His mind was going into overdrive.
"Big brother, catch!" Mokuba had found a metal pipe on the ground, and he sent it towards his Seto, who caught it down low and was in time to turn fluidly and land a cruel kick into his advancing opponent's chest. His dark boot crushed into Tristan's sternum and sent him reeling backwards, almost to the ground. Seto seized the moment to advance with his new weapon, and both metals met in mid-air.
They began a fast-paced exchange of blows and deflections. Seto's hands were starting to bleed from the rough edges of the pipe, but he would not dare stop now. Mokuba watched in petrified silence as the two young men swung their weapons close to each other's faces and chests, barely dodging each other's blows. Seto was beginning to get the upper hand, and bore down on the Tristan with a precise swing to the shoulder, "Whoever you are, you can't even fight!"
"Shut your mouth!" the Tristan spat, affording a wince as he drew back. But with the overwhelming pain came newfound rage, and he lunged viciously, "No- allow me to shut it for you!"
Bat and pipe clashed once more, as the two young men pit their weights against each other. Their straining faces were only inches apart, and the tension was unnerving. But Seto only edged him on, "Oh please, you can't even hit me!"
"I beg to differ!" the Tristan withdrew, about to strike again. Then a voice rang out nearby, "Tristan! Tristan! What are you doing?"
There was that annoying voice again... Yugi and his fan club must have arrived to watch the show.
The Tristan who was not really Tristan at all, stopped to correct the irritating assumption, "I AM NOT TRIS-"
Yugi, Tea and Serenity gasped as Seto landed an opportunistic blow into the back of the Tristan's head. His opponent's eyes rolled back, and he fell with a sickening crunch at Seto's feet. He lay still.
A moment of fearful silence rendered the onlookers speechless, but finally Devlin bravely ventured, "W-What the hell did you do that for?"
Mokuba felt a lot safer now the fight was over, and found the courage to speak up in his brother's defence, "It's ok, it wasn't Tristan! We tried to say hello to him but he just jumped down from the rooves and attacked us. He had a deeper voice and he said he wanted revenge. We still don't know who he really is."
"Den he's one o'da Big Five. Da guy who won Tristan's body," Joey stated in misery, concerned for his friend's state.
"Body?" Seto demanded, as he bent to retrieve his upgraded weapon. Joey was about to argue, but the sight of Kaiba with a slightly bloody baseball bat poised over his shoulders was even clear enough for even he to read.
"Whoa, Kaiba. I don't wanna get ya ona bad day," Joey tactlessly tried the humour angle on someone notorious for being the king of stern.
"Every day's a bad day when I have to spend it with losers like you, Wheeler," Seto quipped back without a care, "Now, who's seen Noah? He's not going to let any of us go until I meet him."
"What makes you so sure?" Yugi began timidly.
"I know he does. That kid has some kind of issue that revolves around me."
"Dat's comin' from da guy who thinks the 'ol world revolves round him," Joey dared to whisper, but Tea nudged her friend to be quiet. To be honest, she wasn't sure how safe Kaiba really was after what she had just witnessed. She made a mental note to back off the friendship speeches around him…for the moment.
Seto only gave a sharp glare and then continued, staring straight through Wheeler like he didn't exist, "I need to find where he stays. If I can find his head quarters then I can put a stop to this all."
Yugi piped up, "But Kaiba! How can you do that when he seems to know every move that we make? He probably won't let us get near him unless he wants us to. And not to mention that the Big Five are constantly chasing us."
"I know. But he wants me to meet him. He just wants me to suffer a little first…" Seto grew resentful once more, and suddenly turned up to his surrounds to address Noah, "Well, I've beat the crap out of this fool! Keep watching me Noah, because that's one down, four to go!"
He waited for something to happen, but was left hanging in silence. Hating being ignored, this was too much for Seto... and then Tea cut in.
"We need to take Tristan's body with us. We can restore it to him, somehow…" she giggled as she looked to the robot monkey in Serenity's arms. Mokuba's eyes widened as he peered over, "Are you telling us that's the real Tristan?"
Serenity smiled up, "Yup. Isn't he so cute this way?"
At these words, Joey and his monkey pal shared an exasperated glance. Seto walked over with the bat still in his arms, his voice full of dark intent, "I have the mind to get rid of that Tristan, too."
The robot monkey that was Tristan broke out into wild jabbering and took a defensive swipe at Seto, who ignored him. Meanwhile, Yugi had his puzzle-solving mind focused on the previous duels they had encountered, "So far Joey, Tea, Tristan, Devlin, Serenity and I have duelled. That's all of us. Have they tried you yet, Kaiba?"
"Please. Noah is waiting for the right moment to duel me himself, but he's too much of a coward to stand and face me one on one. But as for me, that's a very different matter. Now, if you don't mind, Mokuba and I will be leaving. I have a challenger to find and own."
Seto turned on his heel to go back the way he had come, with Mokuba following by his side. The boy waved goodbye to them as his brother stalked away. Yugi called out, trying in vain to stop the proud duellist, "Wait! You can't just go. We should all stick together on this, it's safer that way!"
Seto's mocking laughing voice travelled over his shoulder as they watched him go, "Are you kidding me? I think I can handle my own safety, Yugi. It's you people who would need my help."
The group began to discuss their choices as the sight of Seto's white overcoat grew smaller and smaller. But only Devlin, a sharp, logical addition to the group, realised what had just gone amiss.
"…Wait, guys, where's Tristan's body?" his emerald green eyes darted around in surprise, "It was right there a minute ago…"
The roar of an engine from behind them answered the dice master's question almost immediately. Everyone spun in time to see 'Tristan' straddling a heavy-built motorbike in the shadows of a darkened shed. With a fierce growl, he kicked off the ground and lunged forward on his machine, and narrowly missed the scattering group as he careened towards Seto. Seto turned instinctively but it was too late- the bike was upon him. He raised his bat, a last defence. But the member of the Big Five was not interested in crushing Seto. Instead, as he drove by he stretched out his arm and tore Mokuba off his feet, then roughly hauled the boy's winded body over the front of the bike.
"Motherfucker! NO!" Seto shrieked, unable to take back what was stolen from him in time. The bike sped off into the distance; the Big Five member's wild cackles mingled with Mokuba's terrified screams.
Note: We are just getting warmed up. Next to come: Seto is put under pressure as a high-speed chase unfolds. Can he get out of this unscathed? Not a chance.
We writers need our support, so give me the best review you got!