May I Dance with You, a Yugioh drabble
"May I dance with you?"
She pauses mid-step.
She doesn't know how to react.
He had never come to her soul room when he first controlled her.
He had manipulated her mind, made her do and say things she didn't remember and didn't want to, but he had never cared where her spirit went while it wasn't in control.
After his inner darkness took control of his physical form, he sought refuge in this place.
She was wary, but after she learned of his troubled past, she began to feel compassion.
He was harmless, alone, and afraid, so she allowed him to hide with her.
He didn't talk, didn't interact, and so she ignored him, making use of her soul's inner dance studio to indulge in her favorite diversion.
There he stands, dark even in the sunlight of her soul room, his image behind her reflecting off the mirrored walls of the dance studio, with longing pouring from his lavender eyes.
He's broken; nothing like the person that walks in the real world, using his body to cause everyone around him pain and torment.
He's sort of like leftovers she thinks – as if the being possessing his body took all of his hate and anger and cruelty and left him with pain, sorrow, anguish… everything that he considered weak.
But maybe, she wonders, it works just the opposite. Perhaps this man next to her is the real thing, retaining all of the true and sincere emotions – the human emotions – leaving only the hateful ones for his other side.
She can't be sure, so she asks him "Why?"
He doesn't answer at first; his face contorts in pain, and she wonders just what is going on outside this room, and whether she should worry.
But he doesn't seem worried, just tired.
So, so tired.
"You're so bright," he says softly, "and full of joy. Every move you make expresses emotions so strong and pure that I feel even someone such as I could be healed just by watching you."
She doesn't know what to say, but he doesn't need a response. He seems to smile at her, but it barely quirks his lip, and she can't be sure if there's any real emotion behind it.
She wonders when it last was that he truly smiled.
And she wonders why it even matters to her.
He continues, "I know nothing can save me anymore… I'm beyond healing, but… perhaps if I could dance with you… share in your passion and your light… I might have one more happy thought to take with me into the darkness."
He takes a step closer to her, and she doesn't move away, just watches him approach.
"You're everything my soul ever wanted to be: free, passionate, full of sunlight."
He stops just in front of her and reaches for her hands, still raised slightly from her interrupted dance, and the depth of remorse and yearning in his eyes moves her soul, the sunlight getting brighter above them, gleaming off the glass encasement and surrounding them in pure white light.
Wordlessly she nods, curious now as to whether she could actually help this broken spirit.
He smiles again, and this time both corners of his mouth lift, and she sees her first genuine smile from this dark man.
Holding her hands he spins her slightly, but doesn't make any other moves, as if willing her to lead the dance.
So she does.
She pushes and pulls and tugs at his limbs, forcing him to move in ways he is unaccustomed to and in any other case would have been hesitant to try.
But he goes along with her every move, and she can almost see the life seeping back into his form.
Sometimes he is watching her as they dance, sometimes watching his feet, and sometimes his eyes close tight in concentration; but she watches him the entire time.
And she's amazed to learn something; he understands.
He understands the dance; he understands her.
He feels the emotions in the movement, is deciphering the language of their bodies rhythm, and soon it's becoming his own; the steps become fierce and heavy, the angles sharp and actions quick.
And she finds herself starting to move with him, experiencing his emotions instead of giving him hers.
She feels his pain and sadness, but there's more; she experiences the mysteries of ancient Egypt, the rigid confines of destiny, and afterwards the unbearable joy of something new, her eyes opening to the sunlight of her soul room as she sees him do the same, both reveling in their release of raw emotions.
They pause in their dance and look at each other, their hands entwined and raised to dance more, and she is not surprised to see unshed tears welling in his eyes.
There is nothing to say, but they both feel it; there is love between them now, but it's not a kind she has felt before.
It's different than her love for her friends, her love for her family, even her love for the spirit of a nameless Pharaoh who has come to mean so much to her.
She's never experienced something like this; a love so innocent it broke her heart, and yet so intimate it left her feeling utterly naked and helpless before him.
She doesn't think she's ever felt so connected to someone in her life.
He stares into her eyes some more, and hesitantly, almost self-consciously, he presses a soft kiss to her lips.
She's surprised to find herself almost immediately missing him as he moves away.
But she looks at him again, and he's smiling; really smiling.
It lifts his cheeks and crinkles his eyes in laughter, and she thinks that it's much more fitting on him than any expression she's seen him wear yet.
His eyes are still smiling as he pulls away from her, whispering a heartfelt "Thank you", and before she can ask what for, he's vanished.
Her hands are still held aloft, grasping for his fingers.
The sun in the room dims under a veil of clouds, and she finds she doesn't feel like dancing anymore.
Before she can think on what to do next, she is outside in the real world, high on the Kaiba Corp Duel Tower, surrounded by friends and watching as the Pharaoh faces off against a mad man with dark skin.
And for the life of her she can't remember what she was doing just moments ago.
Years pass; the Pharaoh is gone and everyone's lives have continued and flourished, and she has become the friend of that dark-skinned, light-haired Egyptian man who once fought against light and goodness, but he is changed now and has long been purged of darkness.
He is a good person.
And she has become rather fond of him.
But just as happened many years before, she has no memory of the time he spent inside her mind.
He comes to visit her at her dance studio one morning, smiling genially, but she notices there's something bothering him.
When she asks he smiles more, and slowly, hesitantly, lifts his hand towards her, saying "May I dance with you?"
In confusion she accepts, but as they move together something clicks; her eyes widen in shock and her movements falter.
But then she smiles as a memory is unlocked in her mind, and in unadulterated joy she continues the dance, both of them pouring everything they have become into a new form of movement full of new feelings: feelings of bliss and renewal and love under the bright light of the morning sun, and the two are lost in it as they move together, creating a dance all their own.
I… don't really know how this happened.
I was just drawing a picture the other night, and this story popped up along with it.
So I worked on it from 1 to 3 a.m. until I had it all written out.
And I've basically spent from then to now pruning and rewriting it. I must say, I'm pretty happy with how it turned out – it's one of the most drabble-y things I've ever written. Kind of an interesting change of pace actually.
Oh, and you should probably be familiar with seasons 2-3 before reading this, cuz otherwise it won't make much sense. Though I guess I should have put that at the beginning of the story instead of the end. Whoops. :P