My inspiring sissy Nekoyasha12 encouraged me to make a sequel to Murder my Heart!

The title of this fic is actually rather fitting, no? "Ghosts of Nightmare past" is a play on the 'Ghosts of Christmas past', but I thought it was clever! Yugi will encounter the people from his nightmare past, who have become distant ghosts to him. I love it… YINYANG GODDESS PREVAILS! –glomps Nekoyasha12 for no apparent reason-

I do not own YuGiOh. I apologise for errors.

Part one:

Family.

How Yugi loved it. He loved his family. He couldn't live without them.

It was never 'good' to be too dependent on others, but with a past like Yugi's he was allowed to be a little more dependent on another. And yes, you guessed it. Three years after Yugi's near suicide he had gotten his wish; Yami married him. It was not over night either, but gradual.

Their relationship progressed as slow as Yugi could handle. Yami counselled him for two years still, and by the end of it they knew each other from A to Z. The handsome and determined social worker/ psychologist had probed every inch of Yugi's battered mind, forced out every pent up emotion and unveiled every nightmare.

One cannot heal if the wounds are still infected; so he cleansed Yugi's wounds.

By the time two years were up Yugi had just about healed from his experiences, became as independent as he could bear to be, and was head over heels for his guardian. Yami had 'fixed' him. And he was eternally grateful.

At times Yami saw Yugi as a little stray kitten he'd saved from Death's door, and just as stray animals do when rescued, they become indefinitely dedicated.

He loved Yugi, but only once they had ended the treatment and counselling and Yugi had shown he was mature and stable did he oblige the younger in his dreams and pursue him romantically. In their third year Yami proposed to his kitten and Yugi all but screamed a 'YES' at him. It was a hypocritical, even with all the help he'd given Yugi, he could not stand to imagine Yugi making his own way in the world.

Yugi had, unfortunately, agreed on that thought, and admitted that he didn't think he could either. It was adverse to the 'Stand on your own feet and be independent' theme Yami had been preaching, but not everyone was strong enough to do it. Yugi was one of them.

Kaiba, the Head Detective, had interrogated the information he wanted out of Yugi once Yami deemed him 'ready'. Yugi gave him the dirty secrets of his past, but begged that the men like Pegasus, Joey and Duke weren't interfered with. Kaiba, and Yami, were particularly disgusted at Pegasus, but Yugi insisted they leave him alone. He was untouchable anyway, Yugi did not want his name in the papers for being some kid that birthed the famous Pegasus' only child.

Yugi's Foster father could not be tracked down, it was as if he disappeared, but that was a relief to Yugi. The past was the past, and he wished to forget it.

They say the past can't hurt...but it can still haunt you.

-Seven years later-

"Yusei! Don't eat the sand!" Yugi called out exasperatingly. Children acted as if they had no ears, why couldn't they listen when a parent spoke?

In the sand-pit, little Yusei dropped his fistful and kicked his legs to show his annoyance.

Yugi shook his head, harbouring a scolding but amused pout. How children grew; it was only yesterday he had pushed out the little bundle and now he was already three years old. He himself was now twenty six, Yami was thirty three, Atem was a teenager of thirteen and Heba had grown into a beautiful young girl of eleven. Yugi had given Yami his own son, and they named him Yusei.

Truthfully Yami was not one for big families, but his own was the exception. He loved each of them, and even though Atem and Heba knew he was not their biological father, they treated him as their father anyway. Yami did everything he could for them; he was just as much their father as he was Yusei's.

The weather had been perfect this weekend, so Yugi demanded a day in the park. Even though it held…certain memories for him, he would make new memories.

Conveniently Heba's friends had popped up from behind a hedge and the girl ran off with them, promising to return shortly. Yami and Atem left to buy ice-cream, leaving Yugi watching Yusei eat sand in the play ground.

The park was full of families, children screaming and running from left to right, climbing the monkey bars and enjoying the playground. Yusei was too young to join the older children, so Yugi placed him in the sand-pit, surrounding him with toys.

He loved watching his son play, it was something he did not experience with Atem and Heba, he had often been too tired or practically knocked out. He felt bad that he had somewhat neglected their childhood, but he tried to be the best mother he could for Yusei.

Yugi smiled to himself for the umpteenth time at the knowledge that he had a safe and loving place to finally call home. He finally felt like a person. Albeit a little more nervous and vulnerable than most, but he felt like a real person. He had Yami to thank for that, and his beautiful children.

It maybe many years later, but he still carried scars, some scars did not fade.

If any, they some times hurt.

Triggers…they were a dread to anyone with scars…

To experience something that brought back painful memories was a horrid feeling… melancholy …

It makes you sick…sick with fear…sick with recollections…

Mariku…

He looked the same.

He looked the same.

It couldn't be him…

It was…

No…please no.

Sick with trepidation, Yugi shot to his feet, feeling the muscles in his shoulders and abdomen clench like a wet rag being wrung out. He focused on the eerie figure that lurked in the shadows of the trees, still as stone, radiating pure menace. How could anyone not notice it, lurking there…hovering like a thief in the night, waiting to snap up innocents.

He looked the same. Yugi could not forget their faces, their bodies, they were all carved into the walls of his mind, it was something Yami could not 'fix'. Mariku still looked like he did all those years ago.

How long had it been…?

Twelve years…give or take…

The monster stood leaning against the log of a tree, his thick arms folded against his chest that seemed even wider than before, his legs crossed causally. There was nothing casual about his visit to the park, Yugi knew that for sure. It made his blood boil, but- at the same time, he wanted to run and hide. It was moments like this when his knees would wobble and his hands would reach for the solace called 'Yami'.

His chest tightened to the point were he couldn't breath, but without a second thought he dashed into the sand-pit that was honestly very far from Mariku, and grabbed Yusei up into his arms. He rushed back to their bench, but didn't sit. He looked around for his husband, squeezing his confused child until he began to complain in little babbles.

He cried out wildly at the hand that grabbed his shoulder, frightening tears out of Yusei, and swirled around to find Yami and Atem staring at him in what looked like an expression that began with amusement then turned to shock. He breathed out shakily at the familiar faces, and began bouncing Yusei in apology.

Yami stared in shock at his younger partner, and saw the fresh tears swimming in his gorgeous eyes. Said eyes were darting around frantically before pin-pointing something, where they stayed, transfixed in horror.

He hadn't seen Yugi this way for a very, very long time, what was causing this?

He handed the ice-creams to Atem who placed them all one the bench, and wrapped his arms around Yugi, still towering over him all these years. Yugi melted back into his warmth, but stayed engrossed. He placed his forehead next to Yugi's, breathing loudly in exaggeration so that his distraught lover could follow his example and calm his nerves.

Atem stood off to the side, watching his mother with concern, glancing around for the cause, whatever it maybe.

"Yugi…tell me what's wrong…"

"….!"

"Tell me Yugi, who?" Yami knew Yugi had no fears other than 'men', especially the men from his past. Other petty phobias like spiders and lightning had no place in Yugi's fears, not when compared to his experiences.

The latter man swallowed loudly and gestured with a shaky nod towards the far end of the park, towards the blond that was oblivious to them. He knew he need only say one word and Yami would know, he would understand. He would fix it.

"…Mariku…"

Atem had never seen his father whip out his phone and make a call so fast. He didn't know what was happening, but watched as the eldest male urged Yugi onto the bend and stood in front of him, like a shield, and all but ripped his cell phone out his pocket to hiss furiously at whoever was on the other side.

The teen dropped next to his mother and looked around wearily, confused as hell, and tried to distract the squirming child in Yugi's arms with ice-cream. He silently offered his mother his, but he was declined.

The patriot of their family stood defensive, glancing slyly over his shoulder as he kept watch of Mariku, but tried not to be seen as well.

Yugi had calmed down and gained enough control to help Yusei eat his ice-cream with as little damage to their clothes as possible, his foot tapping impatiently.

Mariku was so close…

The man that touched him…

Captured him…

raped him…

Over…and over…and over

He had only been a child then…he'd been only fourteen, still young, only just free from Foster father…

He may have been accustomed to it…he may have expected it…but it left scars…nightmares…he was only a boy…

pain

The monsters of his past…

He wanted to run to the opposite side of the world and hide Yusei, hide all his children so that the man couldn't get them.

The little mother barely registered when the sudden influx of police sirens were heard, the red and blue lights shining lightly as the parking lot was suddenly filled with police cars and vans.

Yami barked to Atem that he stay with Yugi, and ran off to meet Kaiba as the man jumped out a car. They met with a curt nod, but little could be said as a tall figure began to speed across the play ground. Yami growled at the streak out blonde hair, and shook his head; the man was an idiot to make such a movement when everyone in the park was now standing completely still, he caught everyone's attention.

"Get him! Get him!" Kaiba ordered as he pointed vigorously to the figure. The present cops took off after the Mariku, beginning a chase around the small area.

Yami was tempted to join in, but he knew Yugi would have a heart attack if he did.

Yugi watched with bated breath as Mariku ran for his freedom, his long legs to his advantage. If he had a stone, he would have thrown it at that disgusting blond head, but he had his children wrapped him his arms. His breathing quickened as he, along with everyone else, watched the action, and finally, Mariku went down.

It was a difficult race just to keep up with him, and a major struggle to get him down, and keep him down. The man was large, in his late thirties now and at the prime of his age. It took four male officers to restrain him and drag him back to the vans. He screamed and fought against them like a wild animal, of which Kaiba haughtily ended with a sharp jab of his gun to his head.

It turned out Yugi was in fact not the only child to be molested by the man, he had a whole list of crimes, a list that would shame even the most hardcore criminals. He was difficult to trace because he was erratic and moved around a lot, barely coming out in public. When he did, it was to find a new victim.

His last victim, a boy of sixteen named Ryou had escaped from a week of imprisonment and alerted the police, but Mariku was gone when they raided the house he'd been kept in.

Yami took pleasure in seeing the bastard thrown into the van like a dead carcass, and turned to thank Kaiba. The latter was more thankful for the alert, and headed over to Yami's family.

"Yugi. It's good to see you again."

Yugi smiled, wiping a stray tear away. "H-hello, Mr. Kaiba."

Yami slipped down besides Yugi and slid his arms around him and Yusei. He kissed Yugi's cheek, whispered loving words and encouragement on his bravery.

"I know seeing him was difficult, but you have saved many generations of children to come now that we've apprehended him."

"Thank goodness,"

"Thank you, Yugi. Yami. I'll be in touch with you for his trial."

The pair agreed and watched Kaiba leave, amethyst eyes darting towards the van.

Once the police vehicles were gone, and the other inhabitants of the park had stopped staring at them, Yami kissed Yugi lightly.

"You okay, Kitten?"

Said male nodded and sniffled, but looked up with a brave smile. "I am…I'm okay. I just…panicked."

"Completely normal," Yami assured.

"Guys…what the hell was that?"

Both parents looked up at Atem's question. Yugi gave him a scolding look for his language, but pulled his lips to one side and shook his head. The children didn't know about his past, he wasn't ready to tell them nor did he or Yami think they were ready to hear it.

Atem and Heba did wonder who there real fathers were but Yugi promised to tell them when they were all ready.

Yami patted his partner's head and smiled weakly at Atem, "One day we will explain, when you're older."

"I've reached puberty, how much older can I get before you guys tell me stuff?"

"This is very personal, Atem, you will show respect and wait."

Atem hung his head immediately at the scold from his father, and nodded obediently. He rubbed the back of his mother's hand in apology and mumbled "…sorry, Ma."

Yugi immediately forgave him and group hugged with his family. He was hugged tightly from each side, and giggled as Yusei squeezed the crap out of his spiky head. Yusei had his own small spiky crop hair, but had Yami's late father's blue eyes.

XxXx

Mariku was sentenced to life in prison, never to see the free world again. His courting-hearing had been long, because of all his crimes, but ended in satisfactory for his victims.

A small part inside Yugi screamed 'Hallelujah!' and he felt a little freer, knowing that at least one more monster had disappeared from the streets. He may he older, but he was still small, still beautiful, and still attracted sultry looks from men, so he could not stop fearing them. But he had Yami….he had Yami.

XxXxXxXxXxXx

-One Year Later-

"Really mom, it wasn't that much!"

Yugi let out a sigh of frustration but continued to pound the pavement, shaking his head as Atem, his eldest son, trailed after him.

The family had gone shopping together and split up with the goal of meeting up two hours later. Town was busy, so Yugi and Atem went off together while Yami took Heba and Yusei.

Heba was twelve now, she'd reached puberty and Yami reached the stage where teenage boys became his enemy. The girl attracted attention in hordes, she was athletic, a lot more than Yugi, and beautiful. It was a constant problem for Yami to keep the gawking males at bay, especially with Yugi's fear of some monster catching his daughter, but strangely, Heba did not give the boys a second look. They'd approach her, try to woo her, but she never showed any interest, always trotting off to do her own thing. Perhaps it was because she was still young, or as Yami pondered, maybe she was lesbian and didn't know it. Either way, it didn't stop his hair greying when he caught groups of boys ogling at her.

The shopping did not go as expected for Yugi, Atem was tremendously picky, everything he wanted was too expensive! The teen knew they were a large family and with Yami being the only one bringing in money to the house, he should understand that he couldn't get every item of clothing in name brands.

Once fed up, Yugi left the stores all together and stormed out, leaving Atem no choice but to follow.

They passed and turned a few corners, Yugi keeping silent to give his son the silent treatment. Atem did feel ashamed and selfish, he knew he was being difficult and immature. And if he could have bought second hand clothes to prevent the white hand that shot out of the next alley…he certainly would have.

It happened so fast. Atem choked on panic as the hand clamped around his mother's mouth, another shooting out to grab onto the flailing arm and yank the little body into the crook of the alley.

The action was blurry yet too vivid to be a hallucination.

Even as the cold dread crippled him, Atem bolted after them, using his right hand to swing around the brick corner and into the dark, stinking alley.

His breath hitched painfully in his throat, the saliva going down the wrong pipe giving him an uncontrollable urge to cough. The sight presented to him shocked him terribly. He'd always been sheltered in life, at least when Yami took them in, so the horrors of his past were forgotten from his young mind.

But memories never disappear…

They are kept…deep in the subconscious mind…waiting for a trigger…

White.

White…

He had always hated that colour- and yet…he could barely remember why.

White…pale…ghostly

Pain…

His mother was a good type of pale…a comforting creamy colour…

But this man…

He was wrong…bad…evil…hurt…

The two figures thrust up against the dirty brick of the alley started with wide eyes, their eyes connecting and widened at the sight of each other.

That burgundy brown…how Yugi wished he could forget it.

The knife pressed deeper into the flimsy flesh on Yugi's neck, the younger male breathing harshly through his nose as he tilted his head as farther back as he could to escape the blade. Yugi's arm would surely be bruised by the grip this man insisted on. Their faces were barely inches apart; their frantic breathes mingling in a hotness that tickled their lips, one set chapped the other set trembling, in the cold air of the alley.

Yugi hated the feeling that bombarded him as the man leaned against him.

He hadn't felt it for so long…so long… peaceful years of being free…

And now…one touch and he was back where he started.

Bakura.

He was here…

Bakura

No…please…

Said man looked more shocked than Yugi, the knife eventually inching away somewhat when he finally recognised his victim.

The muscles in Yugi were clenched painfully, knotting up in convulsions as he felt the body of this pale demon…the demon who tortured him…who was now pressed up against him like before.

He wanted to kick. He wanted to fight…he wanted to escape…but he couldn't risk it. Not at this moment…he could hurt his child…

Atem was frozen, but neither elder males noticed him.

When the silence became too loud, the white-haired man spoke in that accent Yugi could never forget.

"…Yugi."

He remembered his name…was that good…or bad?

Said male whimpered in response, pleading with his eyes to his captor.

Bakura studied him momentarily, then looked back into his wide eyes with an unreadable expression.

"…You're alive?"

Was that concern Yugi heard?

Couldn't be…

"…Y-yes…."

The knife withdrew fully from his neck, for which he was grateful, but it was short lived as Bakura slipped his arm around Yugi's waist, holding their waists together. Yugi grunted and pressed against the broad chest as much as he could, cringing at the proximity. Only then he remembered his son, and looked to his left where Atem stood paralysed.

Bakura followed his gaze to find the young teen, who looked so like Yugi, glaring at the position he'd forced his victim into. He scoffed and looked the boy up and down, then turned back to Yugi.

"That's your boy, isn't it? He's grown…"

Yugi panted as he brought his gaze back to Bakura, and looked up. The man looked the same, a little older, more scars, but the same, a little thinner than he remembered, but still handsome.

No…

Not handsome…

If you were ugly inside, then you were ugly outside, no matter how 'beautiful'…

Yami taught him that.

"Where've you been…? You disappeared from me," Bakura hinted, tightening his grip with a light snarl. Yugi gasped out in discomfort and pushed harder, snapping Atem out of his stupor.

"L-let him go! Let mom go!" the teen yelled. He'd taken a few steps forward, his fists clenching as he glared in anger and fear at this strange man.

Thankfully, Bakura did loosen his grip, but it was to turn to Atem. He smirked deviously, and shook his fluffy head.

"…You don't remember me, do you boy?"

Atem kept his glare, his teeth clenched. Yugi swallowed and struggled a little more, groaning when Bakura cackled and held him still. The pale man looked back to Atem with a strange smile.

"You were a little thing when Yugi came to stay with me. And that horrid little girl…I never forgot you all…which hurts me that you ran off, Yugi."

"I had to!" Yugi suddenly cried out, shocking Bakura into blinking. He glowered at the taller man and pushed harder against his chest. "Y-you weren't looking after us, I had to leave. You were just making my life worse! I couldn't handle it!"

Atem didn't know exactly what Yugi was talking about, but he DID remember Bakura now. His mouth dropped as the white hair rang a huge alarm in his mind. Flashes of his young memory blinked through his mind, small visions from all those years ago, and none were pleasant. There was a lot of crying…a lot of screaming…a lot of pain…

Especially for mommy…

On a sudden whim Atem shot out and shoved with all his might against Bakura, clutching onto a small arm and pulling his mother against his own chest to quickly retreat a few steps as the pale man stumbled away in shock.

Immediately Yugi pushed Atem behind him, and struggled to keep him there as he glared forward.

Bakura gaped at the bravery, but didn't close the space between them. One glance at the two males and he saw what he had never experienced himself – 'concern'.

The fire blazing in Atem's eyes in both anger and fear for him was astounding, along with Yugi's own in protection for his son.

"Y-you…you hurt us!" Atem babbled out. Yugi squeezed his wrist in comfort, but he wasn't comforted, not in the least.

"I never touched you or your sister unless necessary. Your mother chose to stay with me, so what we did is of no concern to you."

Atem was about to yell out a disagreement, along with a few curses, but Yugi stopped him abruptly. The small mother breathed deeply through his nose, keeping his son behind him, before parting his pink lips to speak.

"What do you want?"

Bakura pursed his lips, and gave a tardy shrug in response. "…I was working, need money for beer."

Yugi's heart lifted. "So- …you…weren't looking for me?"

"Intentionally? No," the taller shook his head thoughtfully, a wicked glint passing through his orbs, "I guess it was your bad luck for passing by when you did. But…now that were reunited, what say you about coming back to my place?"

Atem gaped at the suggestive lip-licking and pulled Yugi back a few more steps. Yugi gulped as he stumbled, watching Bakura follow slowly in amusement. He shook his head defiantly, and yanked his left hand from Atem's grip to raise his palm up. He wiggled his fingers, and Bakura's attention was drawn to the gold ring adorning the small ring finger.

"I-I'm married now Bakura…"

It was a small surprise, but not enough to stop lewd thoughts. "So? I bet your husband is some drunk passed out in a bar. Why not come home with me? We'll have so much fun. Your kids can stay with him-"

"In your dreams!" Yugi spat. He'd be damned and fucking insane if he ever chose Bakura over his own children and husband. Bakura laughed in response, holding onto his stomach as he threw his head back.

"Ooh Yugi, still so defensive of them?"

"Yes! You never cared about anyone but yourself, you're selfish! Now let us go!"

"Why should I?" Bakura scoffed, "Maybe I want to spend some time with you,"

"Please," Yugi breathed out, emphasising the word as much as he could. He knew he sounded weak, but he could not allow a physical struggle to break out; both he and his children could be seriously injured.

"Please what…?" Bakura teased as he leaned to one foot, grinning as he looked Yugi up and down. The younger was more dressed than he remembered, but he could still remember that soft flesh he'd once called his.

"B-Bakura…" Yugi moaned out helplessly, looking up with shining eyes, "I've started a new life…with a good man…please…don't take that from me."

"M-mom…" Atem breathed out, tears brimming over his own eyes as he hung onto Yugi's right arm.

Bakura was silent now as he watched his victims. He truly didn't want Yugi back, but he was a sadist…and Yugi had always been one of his favourite victims. He'd enjoyed his time with Yugi, but it was all selfish and to sate his lust. He didn't care about him. He was surprised he was still alive, but that was as far as his emotions went.

"I have a f-family, don't break us up, please Bakura…" Yugi begged, his voice slipping into a whisper. Then, slowly and delicately, Yugi's free hand slipped down to cradling his stomach, "Let us go…I'm…I'm pregnant."

The silence became deafening after that line. Atem was glancing around for a weapon, reciting all the methods used in his violent video games. Yugi on the other hand was smiling weakly at his previous lover, caressing his tiny bump. He was three months pregnant from Yami, very proudly too, he hoped he could give Yami his own daughter.

To Bakura, his side was lost. Why bother forcing the male when he was married and pregnant? He wasn't the only piece of hot ass around, and he certainly was not worth the trouble. He was cute…but not worth the trouble right now.

With an unhappy grunt of a sigh Bakura rolled his eyes and stepped back a few places until he hit the opposite wall. Yugi and Atem watched him suspiciously, but he slumping down onto the alley floor, resting his bony elbows onto his knees. The position looked almost pathetic, and automatically Yugi took a sympathetic step forward- only to have Atem pulled him back.

"Let's go," he whispered.

Yugi looked back to Bakura and took pity. Tears dripped down his cheeks, feeling deep pity for the thin thief on the ground of a filth alley. Was the man starving? Struggling? Sick? He looked so tired…

"Mom, please!"

"B-but-"

"You'd better go before I introduce your innards to my knife," Bakura mumbled out, just loudly enough to hear. His voice, Yugi noticed, did not contain venom, or malice. It was…neutral, uninterested if anything.

Which was enough for Atem. He just wanted to get as far away from the man as possible. With a last glower to the demon slumped at the wall he grabbed his mother's arm and dragged him out of the alley.

Tears fell swiftly down Yugi's cheeks as his son pulled him out of the dark corner. For one last time he looked back at Bakura.

A smile,

a smile,

A small one…

Bakura smiled at him, his sharp eyes softened enough for him to look non-threatening. His lips were curved up into a decent smile, aimed at Yugi, before his face turned to look down at his lap where his eyes closed, the smile fading slightly.

Was that a peace offering?

Was it an apology?

Yugi was not sure, he'd like to think so, but he did know that Bakura had let them go. He could have killed them both if he wished, Atem was still a small boy, taking after his mom once more, and Yugi was still rather small and currently vulnerable in his pregnant state. Bakura could have hurt them…he could have done so much…

So much…

Like in the past…

All the pain….the hate…the callous torment…

But he didn't.

He let them go.

Free…

He freed Yugi…

He gave up the ghost…

He gave Yugi freedom…

He was no longer a ghost to Yugi.

For Atem, the experience was terrifying, but for Yugi, it was a strange form of closure. He needn't worry about Bakura popping up to hurt him or his family, the man had let them go without a fuss. He had given up, he had released his shackles. He could have taken the chance to hurt him, but he didn't.

It was over…

His pain and nightmares from Bakura were free now…he could be free from them.

As expected, Yami flipped and freaked out when Atem told him of their experience, but Yugi was a lot less traumatised than expected. He seemed relieved even. The world worked in strange ways, and no longer did Yugi fear the colours brown or white.

Atem and Yami still held a grudge, but Yugi scolded them for it. He was free, and he didn't want their angry as a reminder of times he was trying to forget.

He could sleep a little more peacefully at night, two of his worst offenders now a transparent wisp in the back of his mind…

XxXxXxXxXx

dives into a pool of YugixYami babies