Man, I haven't written a Yu-Gi-Oh fic in FOREVER O.O

KK, this is a story in which Bakura gets a second chance at life. It may turn into Tendershipping if my reviewers want it to ;) It will be anywhere from five to twenty chapters long, and may change to an M rating if I need it to.

Just a note- this Bakura is the Bakura who has had Zorc's influence removed, so he is considerably less evil. Watch Yu-Gi-Oh 211 to see what I mean.

Speaking of, I do not own Yu-Gi-Oh or any of the characters, nor do I profit from this story. Enjoy, and please review :D

~O~

Bakura's head throbbed as a bright light met his eyes. He groaned and sat up, immediately realizing that he was laying on something soft.

"What in the name of…"

He was in a bed. And not just any bed- this bed was extremely familiar to him, though he couldn't quite place why.

"So, you're finally awake."

Oh. That was why.

Bakura looked over to the doorway, coming face to face with Ryou. Ryou stared back at him with a look that was evidently supposed to be angry, but only came off as a mild disapproval.

"You haven't been moving for days. I was beginning to wonder if you'd ever wake up."

Ryou brushed a stray wisp of hair behind his ear, his eyes wandering around the room. Bakura's eyes narrowed.

"Why the hell am I here?" He asked. Ryou looked back at him, beginning to fidget nervously.

"…I found you passed out in an alley on my way back from school," he explained. "I figured it was only fair that I gave you a hand."

"How did you-"

"I'm a lot stronger than I look, you know," Ryou snapped. Bakura fell silent.

"It's freezing cold out there, anyway. You wouldn't have survived out there."

"…So why save me?"

"It wouldn't have been decent of me to leave you out there to freeze, now would it?" Ryou asked, smiling.

Bakura knew that smile. It was the face he'd wear when he didn't want to be found out. The mask he put on so people wouldn't question him, wouldn't wonder if he was hurting.

It was a cute smile, adding a certain appeal to his otherwise plain features. It made a dimple in his left cheek and overall made his entire face light up. It was charming, disarming…and one hundred percent fake.

"You don't have to do that in front of me," Bakura said.

"Do what?" Ryou asked, his smile falling.

"Pretending that you're happy. I know you're not- I shared a body with you for years, remember?"

Ryou hung his head.

"I remember."

An uncomfortable silence settled over the two of them. The only noise was the ticking of the clock in the other room. Bakura adjusted the bedding needlessly, suddenly feeling nervous. A question worked its way into his mind, though it took about a minute before he had the courage to ask it.

"…Why am I here?"

Ryou jumped.

"What?"

"Why am I here? The last thing I remember, I-"

"What's going on? Who are you? Where am I? Tell me!"

"What's happening to me?"

"I died. I swear I died. I-"

"I know. You tried to break the seal on Zorc, and it cost you your own life. I felt it."

Again, Ryou smiled his fake smile.

"…It hurt pretty bad, didn't it? To have your soul ripped from your body like that."

Bakura blinked.

"Yes."

"I know. I felt every bit of it. Every bit of your suffering. And as much as I'd like to hate you, I can't bring myself to do it."

What could Bakura say? 'I'm sorry' wouldn't nearly be enough to cover his trespasses.

"Call me foolish," Ryou added, "but I find it hard to hate you after learning about your past."

"You know?"

Bakura glared at Ryou, grabbing fistfuls of sky blue blanket in a vice grip.

"How much do you know?"

Ryou took a step back.

"Answer me!" Bakura roared. "How much do you know about my past?"

"I-I'm sorry! If you d-didn't want me to know-"

"Shut up. It's not your fault."

Bakura took a deep breath and slumped over.

"There has to be a reason why I'm here. Has the short little brat seen the Pharaoh lately?"

"I don't think so. Truth be told, I haven't seen him in awhile."

Ryou had a guilty look about him. As if it was somehow his fault that Yugi found himself in such a sorry state. Ryou was always the type of person to take the blame for something that he didn't do.

Bakura allowed himself to smirk a little.

"Oh? So short stuff doesn't care about you anymore?" Maybe that was a little harsh. But Bakura never minced words, and he saw no point in dancing around that fact.

"He does! He's just really upset that Pharaoh's gone!" Ryou insisted. "He…he didn't take it well. He really tried to be happy for him, but…there's only so much you can ask somebody to do."

Bakura scoffed.

"Right. Dealing with your problems is so overrated. Better to waste your time sulking and not doing anything about it."

Ryou turned away, walking out of the bedroom.

"Sometimes that's all you can do," he whispered, before closing the door.