Dragonbound

Chapter Sixteen:

A New Mate

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Yami and Atem collided in mid air and then thrashed violently on the ground as they fought. Yami sank his fangs into Atem's shoulder just as the dragon's clawed hands shredded down his back and through his clothing. They tumbled and wrestled together on the ground in a furious mass of roars and kicks. Dust flew into the air all around them and blood splattered on the ground with every inflicted injury.

Yugi strained to stand up but his neck and body were burning so hot. It was as if someone had set his skin on fire and it was cooking him. He gasped and a loud whimper escaped him as his hands went to press against the mating mark. It throbbed angrily under his fingertips.

"Yugi!" Mana called as she ran up and then fell to her knees beside him. Jaden kneeled down beside her.

Yusei ran past them. Yugi managed to pleadingly cry "No, don't!" before he fell on the ground. Yusei skidded to a stop and looked back to Yugi and then to Atem. "Don't." Yugi repeated.

With a loud roar Atem twisted in mid air and slammed Yami's body to the ground. One clawed hand constricted around his neck. His other hand he held high, ready to plunge it into Yami's chest cavity. Blood ran down his injured arm in thick rivers. Yami's face and his entire torso were mutilated with deep embedded gashes that seeped crimson blood. Yet still, the vampire glared up at him and bared his fangs.

"Atem!" Yugi cried out. Atem froze, the bloodlust draining from his eyes. He turned to look at Yugi. The angel was lying completely on the ground and looking at him with tear filled eyes.

"Your highness!" several other people called as they began to run toward them.

Yami blinked "Your highness?" He sneered "You're the king?" When Atem turned back to glare down at him Yami's hand shot out for an attack.

"Yami!" Yugi cried. Yami's attack stopped, his fingernails were an inch from Atem's chest. He turned to look at Yugi. "Please," Yugi gasped "stop." His vision was blurring and he gritted his teeth to deal with the pain. Atem continued to look at Yami. The vampire's expression seemed torn. His eye color changed back and forth from all black with a red circle to human looking crimson. His expression was strained and the hand that was still poised to attack Atem trembled. Yami's gaze turned to look at him. His expression hardened as if he was going to follow through with his attack but then he looked back to Yugi and his arm lowered. He body went limp against the ground. The fight was over and he was willingly submitting. Atem stared in shock as he removed his hand from Atem's neck. He half expected Atem to use this opportunity to attack again, be he didn't. He lay there staring and watching Yugi with growing worry.

Atem rose to his feet and backed away. He turned to the warriors that had gathered around him "Restrain him with magic and take him away. I will deal with him later." Atem watched as Yami was lifted to his feet and then the elves moved forward to bind his wrists and arms. Only then did Atem turn and walk over to Yugi.

"Mana says she doesn't know what is wrong!" Jaden cried out. His winged kuriboh cooed and cried on his shoulder.

Atem knelt down and moved Yugi's hands away. He saw how the mark festered and caused the angel such numbing uncontrollable pain. The skin almost bubbled and grew crusty. Atem embraced Yugi and brought their lips together. Yugi flinched at first but then sighed.

The pain melted away and the burning quickly vanished as if nothing had ever happened. When Atem broke the kiss Yugi opened his eyes and took several deep breaths until finally he was able to breath normally. He looked down at himself, as if checking for what was wrong. "Dragon females are notorious for not being monogamous," Atem explained as he turned Yugi's head so he could look at the mating mark once more. It was completely back to normal. "So, when a pair finally become mates the mating mark not only proclaims their bond but also stops them from having any other partners without prior consent. It was reacting because he kissed you."

Yugi looked around but could not see Yami. He got to his feet. "Please don't hurt him." He grasped Atem's hand "Please. I need to talk with him."

"We both need to talk to him." Atem pointed to his tent. "After you calm down and tell me what happened."

Yugi shook his head "Atem please I-"

"Now Yugi." Atem's expression was not angry, but his tone was adamant.

Yugi flinched but then noticed his arm. His eyes widened "You're hurt!"

"I have had worse-" Atem began but was cut off as Yugi placed a hand over the gash. His hand began to glow along with his feathers. In a mater of seconds the gashed healed before their eyes. When Yugi pulled his hand away only smooth skin could be seen. Atem smiled. "Thank you, but I or Mana could have done that as well." Yugi frowned but Atem ignored him as he began ushering him toward the tent. As they passed he gave orders to Yusei and Mana to go stand watch over the vampire prisoner.

The moment the tent flap was closed Atem turned toward Yugi "I gather that was your brother?" It was more a rhetorical question. "You were not lying when you said we looked alike. Apart from our skin color we could be twins." Yugi nodded absently. "Why is he here?"

"I don't know." Yugi though back to what Yami had said "I think... he was sent here to kill you."

"So then we can only assume he is working for our enemy."

Yugi franticly shook his head "NO!" He looked to Atem with tearful eyes. "No. He stopped his attack when he saw me. He wouldn't..." he clenched his teeth "Even if he is working for the enemy the fact that he didn't attack you shows that he is loyal to me. That contradicts his alliance with them..." he grew quiet "Doesn't it?"

Atem looked down at him, his expression torn between compassion and pain "Yugi..." He walked forward and wrapped Yugi in his arms, placing his head on his chest. "You saw his fangs. Your brother has been turned into a vampire." Yugi reluctantly nodded. "Yugi, vampires are very dangerous and can not be trusted."

Yugi shook his head again "He wouldn't hurt me Atem. He never would, even if he is a vampire now."

"... What would you have me do Yugi?" They moved apart but Atem's hands were still on his shoulders. "He is an enemy assassin that was sent here to kill me. Naturally his punishment would be death. And yet if I carry out that sentence you will never forgive me." Yugi grew quiet as he tried to think. There had to be something, anything, that would keep Yami alive. "Yugi." Yugi looked back up at Atem. "Do you still hold feelings for your brother?"

Yugi's eyes widened and he opened his mouth but found the words were difficult to say. His inner emotions boiled in turmoil. If he didn't say anything then Atem would think he didn't love him and yet if he said he didn't love Yami it would be a lie. He closed his eyes and hung his head "I...I love you, but I also love him." A tear slid down his cheek. "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry."

Atem raised a hand and combed it though Yugi's hair comfortingly. "Yugi," he lifted the angel's head and kissed his forehead. "I understand."

"But I-" Yugi tried to say but Atem raised a hand, stopping him.

"You told me a while ago about your feelings for your brother. The fact that you still harbor these feelings does not surprise me." He smiled "Though I am happy that your devotion to me has not dwindled."

"It wouldn't!" Yugi cried out and then blushed in embarrassment. "I mean, they never would. I'm just..." he smiled despite himself "I'm so happy he's alive." Yugi wiped the tears from his cheeks. "Can we use him?"

Atem frowned "Come again?"

"Can we use him? If he's been inside the opponents walls then perhaps he will tell us some important information."

Atem considered this "If he did we could use it to our advantage. But what makes you think he would so willingly talk."

"Because I'll ask him."

Yugi's innocent and eager violet eyes were so sincere. Atem pursed his lips. He did not have such blind faith in the vampire as Yugi did, then again that was to be expected. Yet still, Atem had seen the vampire struggle and then ultimately obey Yugi's wishes. Atem did not know a great deal about Vampires but he had heard that a vampires' desires could outway a direct order from their master. Atem had always just assumed 'desires' had meant the insatiable lust for blood. However now, he considered that maybe 'desires' meant something else altogether. Besides, Yugi loved the vampire. As Yugi's mate Atem was required to do anything and everything in his power to make Yugi happy. Atem considered his options and knew what had to be done to make sure the other man was unharmed, that Yugi was happy, and that the vampire would join their side.

Atem sighed "What did you say your brother's name was?"

"Yami."

Atem nodded "Then come, and let us speak with Yami."

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Yami knelt on the ground with his hands and arms subdued behind his back. His captors were clever enough to know that rope or chains would prove useless against his strength. So they had used magic, something he did not posses the ability to break. Why? Why had he not killed the king when he had the chance? He had been given expressed orders to do so and yet once he saw that boy's face he had felt powerless to carry out the order. Even as he sat surrounded by guards his very blood throbbed with the drive to execute the order given to him by his creator. Though he did loath Pegasus with every bone in his body he was not able to harm or disobey him because he was his sire, the one who had turned him.

"You're in quite a state." Yami looked up and glared at Luna, the cat had appeared out of nowhere as her smoky black body was floating above his head. He quickly glanced around but the guards that were watching him seemed to not take notice of the flying feline. "I would ask how you came to be like this, but I already know." She laughed "I always know. Oh well, I sure hope you get out of this. Watching you thus far has been so much fun. I'm so happy I helped you." She grinned.

"Go away." He said.

The guards glared at him and the one with cat ears and tail answered "Are you making threats? Those bonds were cast by the highest order of elves. You will not break them, so your threats are meaningless."

Yami rolled his eyes. He had not been speaking to them but to Luna. Luna found the situation rather humorous as she giggled "They can't see or hear me. That's a special privilege I have given to only you sweetheart." Yami sneered but Luna ignored him as she jerked her head to the right. "It seems the king and that boy you like are coming toward us."

Yami's gaze turned to where she was looking and indeed he saw the king and the angel...Yugi, yes that was his name, coming toward them. The driving need in his body to kill the king subsided and his blood cooled. Instead of an insistent ach his body calmed and his heart felt warm as the boy drew closer and closer. His teeth ached to sink into the boy's skin, but strangely he did not have the desire or consuming hunger to drink him dry. Yami managed to get to his feet though he was still bound.

Atem and Yugi stopped before him. A few other people Yami didn't recognize stood behind or alongside them but he ignored them. His focus was solely on Yugi. The boy was endearing and beyond adorable with his small white wings. Though it was strange, Yami didn't remember the boy having wings in what memories he retained.

"My mate wishes to know some information from you, assassin. If you give it to us, you shall be rewarded."

Yami eyes flicked to Atem "Mate?"

Above him Luna practically cheered "Oh, what a twisted turn of events!"

Yami was about to retort when Yugi stepped forward "Yami." Yami's eyes turned back to him. "Yami, please. You said earlier that you didn't want to kill me, is that still true? Do you not want to hurt me?" Without thinking Yami shook his head, no. Yugi smiled and the simple expression had Yami's heart aching. "I'm glad."

"I..." Yami frowned as he looked between Atem and Yugi "I thought you were mine?"

"What?" Yugi blinked.

"You haunt my every thought. You are the reason I have been fighting all this time. I thought... you belonged to me."

Yugi's wide violet eyes were like deep oceans of sadness "Yami... please brother let us talk about this later."

"Brother?"

Yugi blinked "Yes, you are my older brother."

Yami shook his head "No. Brothers do not-"

"They do!" Yugi interrupted him, startling Yami. "We do. But please Yami there is something more important right now. We need you to tell us everything that you know about the enemy." Yami blinked at them. "I'll explain everything later. Please tell us."

"Why would I tell you that?" Yami stared at them.

Yugi walked forward and stood right in front of Yami, cupping his face in his hands. "Tell me, please."

With those words what remained of Yami's soul threatened to tare in two. A sharp throbbing pulsed inside his head "I...can't.." He wanted to turn away from Yugi's touch and yet at the same time press further into it. "They... I..."

"If you tell us everything you know," Atem began, earning everyone's attention. "Then I will mark you as my second mate."

"What!?" Mana, Yusei, and practically everyone else exclaimed in shock and slight horror. Yugi turned to look at Atem, his eyes wide and yet hopeful.

"Marking you as my second mate will allow you to be with Yugi and my magic will force you to be loyal to me. You will cut all tied to your former master and-"

"Done." Yami spoke, interrupting Atem and causing the dragon to raise a brow in question.

Yugi turned back to him, smiling "Really!"

"Your consent was... rather immediate." Atem said suspiciously.

Yami just continued to stare at Yugi. "I hate my sire, and if I were able nothing would bring me greater pleasure then to rip out his throat." He then looked at Atem "I will be allowed to stay with Yugi?"

"Yes, as long as you agree to be loyal to me."

"To become a servant of the king I was sent to kill." Yami mumbled, the irony was not lost on him. He looked at Yugi, who stared at him with a pleading expression. It did not matter, Yami realized. His loyalty had never been to his sire or the people he served. He had always, even from the time he had awoken, been loyal to this boy. "I agree." Yami said, even as the words made him feel as if his heart wee being ripped out of his chest. "I will tell you everything and help you fight, if I will be allowed to be by Yugi's side."

"Am I missing something?" Jaden asked, though no one answered him.

Atem walked forward and even as he tilted Yami's head to the side and leaned his face in the two of them eyed one another warningly. However, when Atem's teeth bit down into his shoulder Yami's body convulsed and a long loud moan escaped him.

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A/N: Let see the previous chapter was uploaded 4/9/13 and this chapter was uploaded 9/3/13. So the readers had to wait pretty much five months for this update. That is unacceptable! That's it. This fanfic is actually the only one I am working on that is even close to being done so you know what, no more other updates to other fanfics until this one is done. Yup, this one is now my main and only priority! *puts notice up in profile* There, it is now official. For those of you still reading this the next chapter will be out very soon so please keep reading. Thank you for your god like patience and support!