A/N: For Tier 5 of Season 8.5 of the YGO fic contest here on ff-net. The pairing is Fameshipping – Ryuuji Otogi x Vivian Wong. Why 'firework romance'? 'cause it only lasts for as long as the lightshow in the sky.

Disclaimer: Kazuki Takahashi and all associated companies are the rightful owners of the Yuugiou! franchise and I claim no association with any of them. No copyright infringement intended with this and no money is being made from this. Please support the creator by purchasing the official releases.

Warnings: sexual content.

Firework Romance

Hell or Glory,
I don't want anything in-between.
- She's My Winona by Fall Out Boy

It started in a curious way that was both very wrong and very wonderfully right.

It started with a one-night-stand.

Drab socialising events – such as the one on the day when everything began – are just begging to be snuck away from to a place more lively and entertaining. Ladies in posh cocktail dresses and gentlemen in neatly pressed tuxedos prowling around a ballroom with slender glasses of alcoholic drinks, sharing pointless and often venom-laced conversation soon here, soon there; all gathered to show off their wealth and their (often nonexistent) goodwill and kindness in a yet another grand charity event. The best of the best, all swarming in one place; the crème de la crème occupying the spotlights in a show that's bound to cause envy in many a person who wasn't privileged enough to take part in it. When seen on television or read about in a celebrity magazine, it often raises a question – who wouldn't want to be a part of that?

Yet thoughts of getting out as soon as possible were swarming in Vivian's head, as she glided amid the guests, picking a small treat here, a tiny delicacy there, holding on to her still mostly full glass of a very expensive champagne instead of attempting to hold a conversation with somebody. As much as she enjoyed shining in the spotlight, she could not stand the people gathered that night: mostly middle-aged tycoons and their surgically-altered balloon-breasted companions with stiff smiles, and not a single looker in the bunch; a few ladies in their forty-fifties with faces of twenty-year-olds, their skin stretched so taut that they appeared to be wearing stiff masks. There was nobody Vivian could even consider wasting her attention on.

The past five years had sobered Vivian up a little. She no longer flung herself at the celebrities she happened to meet, having gained some popularity of her own outside of her homeland and now trying to worm her way into the American market. And for all that Americans were a fun-loving nation, Vivian had learned early on that nobody would take her seriously if she kept to her childish antics.

"The night is still young, but the crowd is already tired," a vaguely familiar voice spoke up behind her in flawless Japanese.

Vivian spun around – slowly and graciously, masking her surprise effortlessly – and was blinded by a pearly white smile.

"Fancy seeing you here, Vivian," Otogi grinned, switching to perfect English and looking very satisfied with himself. His expensive white tux was a perfect fit – without a doubt made specifically for him. It set him apart with its stylish and daring design, while the other socialites were boringly classic and annoyingly similar – and old. He let his gaze slowly roam over Vivian in her flowing sunflower yellow dress, and his eyes glinted in silent approval.

Vivian responded with the same and quirked her eyebrow, seeing that he was lacking his usual entourage of fashionable girls.

"Fancy seeing you here alone, Otogi," she replied in kind, taking a stab at his solitude. She took a small sip of her champagne only to discover that it had already become disgustingly warm.

Otogi laughed airily, flicking a not-at-all-stray strand of his black hair over one shoulder. "I think they went to the ladies' room to freshen up."

Vivian sneered, but made no comment on it. She very well knew what that entailed: fixing the makeup, quickly adjusting the hair, and popping a pill just in case one of them would get lucky tonight. Otogi seemed to be just as aware of it, if his expression was anything to go by, and his momentary expression of annoyance and the barely noticeable roll of eyes weren't lost on Vivian.

"Poor dears," Vivian spoke to her champagne glass, twirling it in her fingers thoughtfully. Otogi's fame was preceding him, and not a month went by without a new update on his conquests and fallouts in some cheap yellow press column. Feeling cheeky and experiencing a brief surge of her old eccentric persona, she leaned in closer to Otogi. "Say, what's your personal record?"

He quirked an eyebrow at her, not understanding what exactly she meant. "Hm?"

"Your dears." Vivian made an indefinite gesture at the ballroom and switched to Japanese. "Who lasted the longest before realising that you're just a regular asshole?"

Otogi flashed her a brilliant smile, shrugging one elegant shoulder and following her example. "Who knows. Who cares? It's the money that keeps them close. Isn't that what you're doing here too? Keeping close to the money?"

Vivian smiled for the camera that turned their way, though she felt like glaring at Otogi, imagining the satisfaction of throwing her already stale drink in his face. To anyone watching from the sidelines they appeared to be having a pleasant conversation. Speaking in Japanese, they could pretend and lie in front of the photographers and the other guests.

"I'm here because a sponsor of my most recent show is also a sponsor of this evening. My agent thought it would be a grand idea if I showed up as some sort of trophy."

"Ah, likewise." Otogi moved closer to Vivian, much to her annoyance, to provide some extra work for the yellow press. "My business partner suggested I show up here to make new and valuable contracts."

"How wonderful," Vivian stressed, tilting her head in mock contemplation.

"Indeed." Otogi glanced around the room, taking notice of the re-emergence of his faithful fan club, which currently consisted of three girls with hair dyed in the most startling orange, red, and magenta tones respectively. He hastily turned to Vivian. "Say, now that we've showed up for these people, how about we show down? To a place that has more life in it?"

Vivian, taking notice of the approaching fire-hazard, emptied her glass in one intake and set it down on a nearby table with an audible clang.

"Anywhere but here."

Smirking quite deviously, Otogi offered her his elbow before marching them through a side door that led out onto a staircase, and from there – down a well-lit corridor, at the end of which an elevator took them down to the underground garage.

"Don't tell me you parked your own car," Vivian snickered.

"Don't tell me you walked here," Otogi shot back.

From there, it took them to a drive through the night-lit city streets, to a fancy new restaurant, to Otogi's apartment.

"You're awfully forward," Vivian muttered against Otogi's bare chest while he fumbled with the zipper on her dress. His jacket was already on the ground near the door.

"Oh, like you're any less," he shot back, shrugging his shoulder out of the shirt she was trying to get off him.

"Doesn't that make us horrible hypocrites for pretending to be better than the rest of celebrities?"

Otogi laughed, tugging her dress down with one hand while she pulled the shirt off him completely. "You – maybe. Now, either shut up or get out. We didn't come here to discuss the morals of the stardom."

"No, you shut up," Vivian hissed, reaching up and digging her fingers in his shoulders and tugging at them to make him lean down.

Otogi's smirk flashed for half a second before he leaned in, locking their lips in a kiss that was trying to be gentle, but couldn't because Vivian insisted on rushing everything.

"Slow down, will you?" Otogi mumbled, pulling away after a moment.


He smirked. "We have the entire night ahead of us, you know."

Vivian made an irritated sound at the back of her throat and faltered, hands still on Otogi's shoulders.

"What are you doing?"

"What does it look like?" he asked, trying to get her dress down the rest of the way, but it remained stuck on her hips.

Vivian chuckled. "It doesn't come off that way. Let me."

She took a step back and pulled the bodice up and over her head before casting the dress aside, remaining in her matching yellow underwear. She would probably regret that move in the morning, but she couldn't bring herself to care about it right now.

Vivian stuck out her chin. "Your turn."

"You are quite eager." Otogi winked, reaching down to take off his shoes and socks before undoing his pants.

Vivian's eyebrow shot up when his plain black briefs came in sight, but before Otogi could make any suggestive comment, she beat him with a, "I expected dice on those."

Vivian didn't have the time to dodge or avoid his hands when he pulled her in, holding her just a little too tightly – which was just a little too scary. He backed her up against the bed, the two of them stumbling in the process and somehow managing to remain upright.

"Did you now?" His voice was a low, husky drawl against her ear and she couldn't suppress a small shiver. He placed a few kisses along her neck. "What else did you expect? I ask because your plain panties and boring bra didn't meet any of mine."

"You're an asshole," Vivian muttered, digging her nails in his arms and trying to avoid his gaze. Her cheeks had coloured the slightest tinge of pink.

Otogi frowned at her. Then sighed in an exaggeratedly exasperated manner, at the same time somehow managing to nibble on her earlobe.

"Looks like I'll have to show you the ropes. First," he accentuated it with a slow kiss on the side of her neck, "you don't scratch, or bite. That's uncivilised." He adjusted his grip on her, tightening the hold on her waist with one arm and moving the other up so that he could cup the back of her head and tilt it back. "Next, you slow down. And don't scream. I hate screamers."

It was Vivian's time to be exasperated. She shifted in his grip, unnerved and quite bothered by his proceedings. She wasn't exactly high on having her throat kissed and wanted it over and done with as fast as possible.

"Are you going to shut up? Or are you just that much in love with the sound of your voice?"

Otogi chuckled and flicked the tip of his tongue against the pulsing vein on Vivian's neck.

"You aren't very inspiring, Vivian."

The struggle that ensued brought them down onto the bed where Vivian found herself underneath Otogi. She let out a frustrated cry and attempted to kick him only to discover that he had them pinned. Her arms were trapped between them and he had her head in a tight grip.

"Taming the shrew," Otogi muttered low, earning himself a vicious glare and a violent kiss that was supposed to silence him, but ended up only brushing his cheek because he turned his head away at the last moment.

"Vivian, Vivian." He shook his head in mock exasperation. "You do need some extra lessons."

"Go to-" she started angrily.

Otogi's attempt at silencing her was far more effective – and violent. His lips locked with hers in a harsh and bruising kiss, knocking their teeth together. Insistently, he pried her mouth open, invading it with his tongue and forcing her to fight him back. When Vivian began responding, he gradually slowed down and became gentler; more teasing. He gave her more freedom by letting go of her head, opting to play with separate strands of her hair instead. Vivian didn't even notice the moment when her arms wound around his neck, moved all over his back; and when she parted her legs to let him settle between them. She was only vaguely aware of the frenzy when they scrambled to remove the last articles of clothing and not forgetting protection before Otogi took her.

The next morning met Otogi sprawled on the bed and Vivian sitting on the edge of it with a sheet carelessly draped around her chest. She reached up to run a hand through her messy hair, combing them back with her fingers. Peering back at Otogi and his half-lidded gaze, she straightened her back.

"No hard feelings, right?" she half-stated half-questioned while getting up to her feet and looking around for her underwear.

"That's my line," Otogi chuckled and threw one arm across his eyes. It was still too early for him to be getting up. "We should do this some time again."

Vivian gave it a few seconds' worth of consideration before reaching for her bra.

"Doubt it."

Otogi snickered. "You're right."

He continued drowsing and listening to the rustle of Vivian's clothing, as she pulled it on. He would have continued to do so even after she left, if she hadn't thrown his pants at his head.

"Oi." Otogi jerked his arm to the side, throwing the article of clothing off.

Vivian crossed her arms and drilled him with a gaze that was borderline glaring. "Are you going to give me a lift to my hotel or must I call a cab?"

As much as Otogi wanted to tell her to take the cab – what he always told his darlings, he bit his tongue this time. He slowly got out of the bed and started dressing while Vivian went on to pick up her hairpins off the carpet.

"I suppose I owe you that," Otogi conceded with a smirk and a tilt of his head. Concluding that the both of them looked ruffled enough for a more social event, he added, "And breakfast."

Vivian picked the most expensive place in town.

Two months later, a stuffy cocktail party was trying to suffocate Otogi with the overabundance of skinny models and young starlets. Most of them were vying for his attention. In any other situation, he would have felt the urge to loosen his tie a little and kick back with a drink or two to soothe his frayed nerves, but now he could merely keep himself amused by watching the girls ripping into each other's throats – figuratively, for now. The party was missing something and he couldn't quite put his finger on it. He picked up a glass of champagne from a tray carried by a passing-by waiter and took a sip, watching the spectacle unfold.

"Cat and the canaries. What a lovely sight," a voice in flawless Japanese drawled behind him, and Otogi had to fight back a broad grin. To his credit, he didn't turn around to look at her, instead letting her come forward to stand at his side.

"You're late to your own party, Vivian." He peered down at her, dressed in a long red qípáo embroidered in golden floral patterns. Very traditional, very Chinese, very… Vivian.

"Oh? I didn't know you were keeping track of my time, Otogi." She reached over and plucked the half-empty glass from his hand and taking a sip from it.

Otogi raised his brow at that. "You missed the fireworks."

Vivian shook her head and handed the glass back to him.

"No. You're the one who's about to miss them." She turned to leave. After a few steps, she glanced back over her shoulder and Otogi had to bite the inside of his lip to hold in the laughter that threatened to erupt from his chest.

"Do you still park your own car?"