I DO NOT OWN YUGIOH BY KAZUKI TAKAHASHI
This is a revolutionshipping fic which takes place at the very end of the series when Atem is supposed to go home. In my story, Atem had the choice of moving on to the next life to be with the family and friends he remembered, or to get his own body if Yugi lost to him.
Within the chambers of the Millennium Puzzle, Atem let out a small sigh. Soon…this place would be nothing but a memory. This prison…with its labyrinth-like chambers and never ending doors…would be a mere thought lost in the sands of time…or eternity perhaps. In spite of his eagerness to be away from this maze of solitude…he was sad. He wasn't sure he wanted to leave his friends…to leave…HER.
Tea Gardner…the most amazing young woman he'd ever met. She had shoulder-length chocolate locks, porcelain skin, an aspiring dancer's body, and the most incredible eyes of sparkling sapphire. Those striking eyes reflected the impenetrable light within her soul—the purity that always attracted his tainted heart to her pristine one. Her smile, sweet and filled with kindness, always seemed to lift whatever burden weighed itself on the Pharaoh's shoulders. It made him think about times when everything had been all right…made him believe that things would be all right again. There was no denying it…Atem was smitten with the girl…and tomorrow he might be saying goodbye to her forever.
Atem shook his head and stood up. If he kept thinking about Tea…he wouldn't be able to strategize properly during the Ceremonial Duel…and Yugi deserved more than that.
Deciding he'd given his host plenty of time to prepare a deck, he allowed his spirit form to materialize in the outside world beside the boy. Yugi seemed to be lost in thought, staring at the door and biting his lip with what looked like concern. Taking care to keep his gaze from the cards in Yugi's hand, Atem inquired,
"Have you finished building your deck, Yugi?"
The boy jumped in surprise and whipped around to face his translucent companion. "Where have you been, Atem? Everyone was worried about you!"
"I'm sorry…" The Pharaoh frantically searched his brain for an excuse, hoping his host wasn't tapping into his thoughts. He couldn't tell the boy he'd been thinking about Tea…so he went with another story that held more truth than lies. "I had to sleep inside you. I couldn't watch you build your deck. The deck for your duel with me…"
Yugi raised his brows. "So you know…?"
"Yes. I heard Marik's explanation. The rite of the duel. If I win, I attain my own body and remain here in the world of mortals. If YOU win…I move on to the afterlife. This is my final test…and you are the one who will give it to me."
"I…" the spiky-haired youth bit his lip slightly…then forced his face into an uncharacteristic look of determination. "I will use all of my skills to duel you."
"I know…" The Pharaoh glanced at the boy and smiled. He'd always regarded Yugi as a brother…perhaps a younger brother even though they were, in fact, the same age…and because of this, Atem was able to tell whenever something was bothering the boy. He could tell that such an occurrence was happening now…as Yugi was still staring at the cabin door with that worried look.
"Did something happen while I was out of commission, partner?" he inquired.
Yugi looked up at him, biting his lower lip again.
"Well…Tea came in just a few minutes ago. She asked about you…and when I told her you hadn't said anything…she got really flustered and made up some hasty excuse to leave…I think she wanted to talk to you."
Atem's heart lurched. Tea had been here…she had inquired after him…and she left upset…?
"I think…you should go see her," the boy added, with a slight, knowing smile playing on his lips. Atem felt his face heat. He and Yugi had both harbored feelings for Tea for quite some time now, Yugi's being far more obvious than his other half's…and Atem had actually thought his host had no idea about his affections…but it appeared he was wrong.
"Go, pal," his host's smile widened. "Listen…I gave up on her a long time ago. It's obvious she likes you…and it's becoming more and more obvious that you share her feelings."
Atem finally went into a full on blush and stammered out some words but Yugi held up a hand. "Go. And leave the Puzzle here, so I can return the favor of privacy that YOU bestowed upon ME."
Yugi's spirit slid into the Puzzle, forcing the Pharaoh's into the body which still sat in the chair. He started to yell down at the Puzzle, just like he had on his and Tea's date so long ago…but figured that he could scream his lungs out and the boy wouldn't listen. So, he sighed, placed the artifact on the table, and headed out the cabin door.
As he walked, the Pharaoh could feel his nerves growing more and more frantic. He'd faced raving lunatics, evil dictators, and giant, soul-eating monsters…but NOTHING compared to the fear he was feeling now. He was terrified of what he would say…what she would think…what would result…he didn't want to tear away the armor he'd built over his heart only to get shot with an emotional arrow. But….he knew that he owed it to himself to indulge in at least ONE desire in his life…he owed it to Tea to let her know how he felt about her.
Taking a deep breath, Atem slowly reached out and rapped on her door, letting her know who he was after he'd done so. The girl responded, sounding surprised and flustered, but implored him to enter. The Pharaoh stepped inside, closed the door behind him…and nearly gasped at what he saw.
The quaint little room had no lights on, but was illuminated by the silvery moonlight coming through the window…and the pallid glow made Tea seem simply stunning. She stood there, her ivory skin practically glowing, her dark locks beautifully framing her stunning face…and those radiant eyes looking like tiny bits of ocean, lined with thick black eyelashes. Those eyes…he noted with concern…had a slight moistness to them that made his heart writhe with concern. Had she been…weeping over him?
A rather awkward silence ensued between them until the Pharaoh finally explained, "Yugi said that…you wanted to speak to me…?"
"Oh…" the girl's cheeks went pink, and Atem thought it made her look even prettier. "He did…" She bit her lip and hung her head so that her bangs covered her face.
Atem was about to say something else…when he saw a single diamond-like tear drip onto the floor…and his breath caught again. He couldn't bear to see her cry…to see her in any kind of pain…it made him want to fly into a rage and ruthlessly punish the person who had caused her sorrow…which in this case, was him.
Sighing, the Pharaoh reached over and slid his fingers beneath her chin, tilting her face to look at him. Tea seemed surprised when he did this…and almost a little nervous. He didn't understand why she always got so anxious around him…and would never guess it was because of his looks.
Atem was extremely handsome, with a slim yet muscled body, spiked, tri-colored hair that was slicker than Yugi's, a deep charismatic voice, and ebony-lashed eyes the color of fresh blood. Those eyes…seemed to stare right into someone's soul…and had the ability to strike awe as well as fear into the hearts of anyone who gazed into them. That was exactly what Tea experienced at that moment…and her legs involuntarily buckled beneath her.
Atem caught her and half dragged her over to the bed, sitting down beside her and staring worriedly into her face. "Are you all right?" he asked.
It was a dumb question. The girl quite obviously WASN'T all right…in fact, she was crying.
"I'm sorry…" she whimpered, brushing frantically at her eyes. "I just…I don't want you to go…I…I love you, Atem…I always have…" She turned her face away and placed a delicate hand over her mouth to try to stop the sobs.
The Pharaoh's breath caught in his throat. Did he hear her correctly? She LOVED him? He knew that their feelings had at least reached the level of a "crush"…but love? But she COULDN'T love him…HE couldn't love HER…. He might have to leave for all eternity tomorrow, and they couldn't harbor such strong feelings for each other…but they did…and there was no use in denying it.
Atem let out a heavy sigh and reached out to touch her face. He turned her head to face his…and gazed into those reddened, sorrow-filled eyes as if he could stare right into her soul. Then…Atem wiped the tears away with his thumb, leaned in…and captured her lips in a tender kiss. He felt her body tense, then go slack and had to wrap his arms around her waist just to keep her upright…but she responded eagerly to the kiss.
The Pharoah wanted to go deeper…to let her know just how passionate she made him feel…but he knew that if he did that he would go past the point of no return. Instead, he pulled away gently and leaned his forehead against hers.
"I suppose it would be redundant to tell you I feel the same way…" Atem murmured, allowing a small smile to grace his lips.
Tea returned his smile, though tears still lingered in her sapphire eyes.
"Tell me anyway…"
"Very well…I love you…more than anything in this life…or the next…"
The last three words made her flinch and she buried her head in his shoulder, her slender form trembling. "Why?" she whimpered into his shirt. "Why do you have to be taken from us? You were finally getting a chance at your own life…and now you have to surrender it…i-it just d-doesn't seem f-fair…
The brunette's voice dissolved into sobs and Atem wrapped his arms around her, rocking her back and forth…but saying nothing. What was there to say? She was right…he was losing his life…and it wasn't fair.
Tea pulled back a little and looked up at him. She glanced at her bed and back to him, saying, "Will you…?"
"Yes…" Atem knew what she meant without asking and was more than content to oblige. He lay back on the bed and allowed her to lie on his chest, stroking her hair as she wept softly against him. She would probably cry herself to sleep…and he would hold her all night…since he would never get the chance to do so again.
When the Pharaoh woke up, golden rays of light were just beginning to peak out over the Egyptian horizon. Tea was fast asleep on his chest, her face looking peaceful and vulnerable while his arms were still wrapped protectively around her. He sighed. He wanted to stay…to gaze at her beautiful face until she woke up…to kiss her one last time before they had to say goodbye…but he knew he couldn't. The ship was scheduled to dock at its destination in two hours…and Atem still needed to prepare his deck for the Ceremonial Duel.
Letting out a small breath, the Pharaoh placed one hand on the back of Tea's head, keeping the other on her back, and slowly turned over. He laid her on the bed, shocked that she didn't wake up in spite of the fact she was being moved. Then, Atem leaned down, kissed her forehead, and whispered that he loved her…before very reluctantly exiting the room.
Atem's entire body tensed as he faced the light…the light that led into the afterlife. The Ceremonial Duel had taken place…and Yugi had won, proving that Atem had learned to accept defeat and was therefore ready to move on…but he felt like he wasn't. He looked back at his friends…no…he was fully capable of going…he just didn't WANT to.
All the faces staring back at the Pharaoh were tearful, especially Tea's. Joey kept a hand on her shoulder, not so much comforting her as giving a silent command to let the Pharaoh go.
Atem stood there, not knowing what to do. He was literally standing between life and death…and he didn't want to choose death…but was it even possible for him to defy the rules of the Ceremonial Duel? Atem had no idea…
Finally, the Pharaoh forced himself to turn and stepped deeper into the light…but not ALL the way in. From his position, he could see his Egyptian friends on the other side, all waving and smiling at him…his friends…and his father.
Aknamkanon beamed lovingly, that smile that always sent a wave of relief through Atem as a child…but not any longer.
"What troubles you, my son?" the old king asked, arching a graying eyebrow quizzically.
Atem hung his head, feeling almost as if he were being ungrateful.
"I'm sorry, Father, I just….I don't think I can…I don't think I WANT to leave this world yet. I know that I died long ago…and I technically shouldn't be here in the first place…but I had the opportunity to live the rest of my life…and now…"
"This is your heart's desire?"
The Pharaoh nodded, still not looking up.
Aknamkanon gave a small sigh…and smiled, saying,
"What?" Atem looked up in surprise.
"You have saved the world time and time again, my boy," his father explained. "The Egyptian gods are grateful to you…and would be more than content to give you another chance at life. Go back to them…go back to HER."
Atem's face burned. How had his father known he was in love? Was it written all over his face?
"Yeah!" teased Mana, who stood back a little beside Mahad. "Go get her, Temmy!"
The Pharaoh grinned, not even caring that she used the old nickname that used to drive him crazy.
"Thank you, my friends," he said. "I shall see you someday…when I am ready to go."
With that, he turned, stepped out of the light…and back into the world of mortals. His friends all stared at him, shocked expressions on their faces.
"Y-you're back…?" Yugi stuttered, a hopeful look in his wide, amethyst eyes.
The Pharaoh smiled and nodded. "Yes…I'm afraid I've grown too fond of all of you…you are stuck with me."
The teens let out a whoop of joy and ran towards the Egyptian…the companion they thought they'd lost forever. Atem grinned at all of them…and shared an especially long gaze with Tea. She was in tears again…but this time, for joy.
Their happy reunion was cut short, however, by an ominous rumbling that sounded throughout the pyramid.
"Oh no!" Mokuba cried. "It's collapsing!"
"Time to go boys and girls!" Joey added and began dragging Yugi out of the chamber after the others.
Atem grabbed Tea's hand and grinned at her before following as well.
The Pharaoh stood on the upper deck of the ship, gazing out at the sparkling Nile River. He was surprised at how amazingly beautiful everything looked…the setting sun painting the sky with shades of red and gold…the pyramids beautifully silhouetted against the light…the river glimmering peacefully….Atem guessed he just hadn't noticed before because of all the sadness he'd felt.
The Pharaoh smiled when he heard soft footsteps coming up behind him. They slowed, obviously tip-toeing…they halted…and Atem whirled around, catching a surprised Tea in his strong arms.
She laughed as he hugged her, spinning her around once before stopping and holding her tightly.
"I'm so glad you decided to stay…" she whispered, pressing her cheek against his.
"So am I…" the Egyptian teen replied….then his face lit up with a grin. He pulled back a little and slyly asked, "Would you like me to show…just how happy I am that I stayed?"
He felt the girl's body press even closer to him, her lips…pursed slightly.
Without another word, Atem crushed his mouth against hers, kissing her roughly and deeply. This kiss was quite different from the first one they'd shared…the one of sadness and goodbyes. This one…was of passion, joy…and new beginnings. The Pharaoh slid his hand down to Tea's hips while hers tangled in his unruly hair and when they finally broke away, they were panting heavily.
"I love you…" the girl whispered, eyes half-lidded.
"And I you, Tea Gardner…" Atem growled huskily…before capturing her lips in his once again.
My first attempt at rewriting the depressing ending to Yugioh XD. I hope you like and please review :). Please no flames.
I DO NOT OWN YUGIOH