The day brought with it sun and chirping birds; people milling and shopping about, babbling fountains and honking cars, sizzling food and giggling school girls, barking dogs and crying babies. It almost seemed a crime to stay inside on such a perfect day but being adults, Yugi knew he had to stay indoors and run the Game Shop. Yugi and Tea had graduated and got married, taking the shop over for Yugi’s grandfather.
He was losing his mind to the dark monster that Yugi could not duel against, dementia. Yugi got up every morning to let Joey in, his co-worker; who tended to sweep outside of the shop, sleep or entice people to come in. Tea, who was pregnant, would stay upstairs and take care of Yugi’s grandfather. At lunch, she’d deliver food to Yugi, as Joey’s girlfriend would deliver him food if she could get off of work.
But this day, this perfect day, they were altogether; Yugi and Tea behind the counter, Joey and Mai standing right next to the counter and even Tristan and Serenity were in the shop. And that’s when the door to the shop slammed open, hushing everyone’s conversation. A young girl who looked about six years old stood in the doorway. Tea smiled. “Welcome to—“
“I am looking for a card.” Her voice was definitely that of a little girls but her tone was so thick with authority, one almost forgot she was six years old. She stormed up to the front of the shop and stepped up on the little step stool that Mai had begged Joey to put in.
Yugi smiled at the little girl. “What card are you looking for, little girl?” She frowned. “Do you have a deck? Do you need help setting one up?”
“My father made sure I have a very powerful deck. There is only one card I need to complete it.”
“Oh, yeah?” said Joey leaning on the counter; staring down the little girl whose dress was the color of a sweet, pink peony. He lit up a cigarette and let the smoke flare slowly from his nostrils so his eyes were veiled. “What card is that?”
“Blues Eyes White Dragon.”
Tristan leaned into Joey. “Too bad daddy isn’t Kaiba!” He spoke at a level that couldn’t be heard outside of himself and Joey. Joey laughed and slapped the glass counter, earning a glare from the little girl.
“That’s quite a powerful card for a little girl,” said Yugi.
“If you forgot, I have a very powerful deck,” said the little girl. “I can handle the power.”
“When I was sixteen, I couldn’t handle that much power,” said Joey.
Another glare from the girl but then she closed her eyes and got an air about her that reeked of I’m-better-than-you. “Maybe so, but I am not a sniveling puppy.”
Joey now leaned into Tristan. “Maybe daddy is Kaiba.” He spoke at a level that couldn’t be heard outside of himself and Tristan. Tristan nodded, Joey wasn’t wrong in thinking that. Kaiba would be the one to have an extremely bratty daughter.
“Isn’t there another card your deck could use?” asked Yugi.
“Don’t make me go and get my daddy,” said the little girl. She could feel her face burn with anger.
“Okay, okay, maybe you can handle the power but you can’t handle the price,” said Joey. “It’s a little more than your allowance.” The little girl slammed down two, two hundred bills. Yugi’s mouth dropped open, why on earth would a small child have that much money? How irresponsible could her parents be? “Tack on another zero there, princess.”
The Blue Eyes White Dragon card they had in the case wasn’t $2,000.00, but Joey wanted the brat out of the store. The little girl stepped off the step stool and Joey smirked; one for Wheeler, zero for little baby cry pants! She strolled to the door, opened it, and started to bawl. “Daddy!” Her voice of authority had melted away into the voice of a six-year-old little girl. “I want my Daddy! Daddy!”
Mai turned to glare at Joey, her razor blade earring catching the sunlight along its edge. Mai smacked Joey. “You just made a little six-year-old girl cry,” she sneered, shaking her head of blonde hair, making her razor blade earrings dance. “How can you sleep at night?”
Tea narrowed her mascara-smudged eyes at Joey, and they were serious. “How can you live with yourself, Joey?” sighed Tea. Late afternoon light streamed through the store front windows, casting wonderful warm shadows over the whole store.
“She was a spoiled brat!”
The door slammed open again and inside stepped Seto Kaiba and right behind him, was that little girl. “Who made my daughter cry?” No one answered. No one ratted out Joey. They weren’t afraid, they were speechless. Seto strolled to the counter nonchalantly before slammed his suitcase on the counter. “$2,000.00 for Blues Eyes White Dragon?” Joey nodded. Kaiba slammed down a grand total of two thousand dollars on the counter. “Give me the card.”
Yugi did, his eyes not leaving Seto Kaiba and the little girl. He handed the card to Seto. “H…h…here you g…g….go,” said Yugi.
Seto snatched the card out of Yugi’s hand and bent down to the little girl. “Does this make daddy’s little princess happy?” he asked, as the little girl tore the card out of her father’s hands. Using his thumbs, he wiped away her tears. Seto kissed her forehead. “You know daddy hates to see you cry.”
The door slammed open again and in stepped a woman they had never seen before. She had long, jet black hair that shined blue when the light beamed against it. She walked up to the counter as Seto Kaiba stood up, holding the hand of the little girl. “Mommy! Mommy! Look what daddy got me!”
“Oh, wow!” smiled the woman. She looked at Seto. “If you keep spoiling Seta like this, she’ll never learn.” Seto said nothing and the woman kissed his cheek, earning a yucky from their daughter. She looked at Seta. “You got daddy tied around your little finger, don’t you?”
The three turned to leave the shop, leaving Yugi, Joey, Serenity, Tea, and Tristan’s mouths hanging up. Mai ran up to Mrs. Kaiba. “Gotta say, that tattoo is gorgeous!” squealed Mai. They hadn’t noticed it, but she had a Chinese dragon with white scales, blue eyes, nose and lips circling her upper arm. “Where did you get it done? I didn’t think Domino had any skin shops?”
“I got it done in China when I was a child.” Mai grimaced as the faint rush of cold air from the shops AC hit her. The air was colder than a frost giant’s scrote. What kind of parent allowed a child to get a tattoo? And an intricate one as that? “Everyone in my family has one. The same one.”
“Not really. Not if you knew our history,” she said and continued walking with her family out of the store.
Mai’s lips curved in a smile. “Well, ain’t she just Miss. Mysterious?”
“Not really,” said Mokuba, popping in after his older brother, sister-in-law and niece had left. “Her name is Long. She is part of the family that helped the pharaoh’s get dragon cards. Her village in China has access to dragons and when Egypt heard of this, they worked with her village. Her family were the guardians of the Blue Eyes White Dragons.”
“Makes sense why Kaiba is in to her,” sighed Joey.
“Seto didn’t even know of this,” said Mokuba, drawing a breath. “Until we went to China. Seto just went to ask her family for their blessing.”
“Blessing?” said Joey.
“For marriage,” sighed Tristan.
“Her family should have come to Domino,” grimaced Joey, a rather rude, and domesticated beast. “Then they’d woulda known what a creep and a slime Kaiba is!”
Chapter 2- Dragon’s Lullaby
art writing here…