Seto Kaiba stared after them. How could he have been so foolish? Of course, she wasn't the same person any more, why would she ever look at him the same way as before. It had been a fluke, a trick before, and he had fallen right into it. He gritted his teeth and clenched his fists. He had been an idiot to fall prey to such pathetic emotions. Without another word, Kaiba pushed his way through the small group of ogling morons and up the stairs. He didn't even look around when he heard his younger brother calling his name. He stormed into his office, slamming the door behind him. He walked round his desk and sat down in the comfortable seat there. He leaned forward, resting his elbows on the smooth wooden surface of the table, his chin perched upon his hands. He took in several deep breaths, trying to calm himself. After several moments silence, he sighed. He leaned back and grabbed the phone. He threw it as hard as he could against the wall. It crashed against it, breaking into an impossible jigsaw and scattered across the floor. Kaiba gritted his teeth and massaged his temples. He was getting a hideous headache.
Why hadn't he followed the plan? He couldn't bring himself to do it. He'd had a plan and he, Seto freaking Kaiba, had chickened out. Why did been around the beautiful brunette set his nerves on edge? It had been such a simpler time when those innocent brown eyes of hers had irritated him, but had they ever truly annoyed him? Was it just that he'd sensed his attraction to her then and he'd resented the fact he could feel himself changing in her presence? Kaiba rested his face in his hands, trying to keep calm. The truth was, Seto Kaiba had never felt this way in his life before and he wasn't quite sure what to do with this new pain he was feeling in his chest.
Yugi stood with his friends as Kaiba left the room. They were all staring after him. What had they just witnessed? And what was up with Yukiko? Yugi didn't know, but the feeling of unease in the pit of his stomach grew. Yugi looked around at the rest of the group.
"Am I missin' something here, Yug? Or are Yukiko and Ryo now a couple?" Joey asked, turning to gaze at Yugi a look of upmost confusion upon the blonde's face.
"I think you're right Joey," Yugi admitted, "It would seem Ryo and Yukiko like each other,"
Even as he said those words, something felt wrong about the meaning of them. He could remember back to the house warming party himself and Joey had thrown. All night, he could see this – something – between Yukiko and Kaiba. Every time she looked at him, her cheeks would flare up. Since then, she'd lost her memories, but could those emotions really just switch off?
Yugi froze. The voice. It hadn't spoken out loud, it was in his head. He recognised that voice. He hadn't heard that voice in a long time. Yugi gulped. He looked around. His friends were busy whispering to each other about the events that had just taken place. Yugi edged his way out of the room. When he was free, he broke into a run, heading towards the nearest bathroom. It couldn't be him, could it? Yugi almost threw himself inside and locked the door behind him, breathing heavily. When the Pharaoh had left him, almost two years ago, he had lost his best friend. He missed him so much, but in all that time, he'd never imagined to hear his voice calling out to him. He couldn't be imagining it now, could he? Yugi walked over to the sink. He gripped onto the edges of it and willed himself to gaze into the large mirror positioned in front of it. Taking a deep breath Yugi spoke.
"Yami?" He whispered into the emptiness of the room, his quavering voice echoing of the tiled walls. There was no reply. Yugi exhaled, feeling foolish. He had imagined it. He decided to try one last time, his subconscious holding onto the hope that he wasn't going crazy.
"Pharaoh?" He whispered gazing at his reflection. He waited for a few moments, disappointment beginning to ache in his chest when he noticed something in the reflection of the room. Was it his imagination, his desire to see his friend again, or was there some sort of shape forming behind him. Yugi stared wide eyed as the shape began to form a more defined outline. Yugi gaped in disbelief. There was a man stood behind him. The man looked very much like himself, only he was taller and there were blonde bits in his hair that shot out to the tips like lightning bolts. The man who had appeared was dressed in the same clothes as Yugi, although the Egyptian costume seemed to suit the man more. His eyes, although the same shade of amethyst, had a different more serious shape to them. Yugi stared at the man behind him. The man stared back.
Yugi turned slowly around to examine him, to see if he really was here. He gazed up into his face, the emotions overwhelming him. The man was semi-transparent, as he always had been when they'd shared the same body before.
"Pharaoh?" Yugi whispered, hardly daring to believe his own eyes.
"Yugi," The man replied, a smile spreading across his handsome mature face.
"Pharaoh!" Yugi exclaimed completely overjoyed. A smile spread across his face as tears of happiness formed in his eyes. He remembered how upset he'd been when he'd won his friend at the duel of their lives, the duel that had allowed the Pharaoh to move on. He remembered the feeling of loss at knowing he was to never talk or see or go on adventures with his best friend again. But now he was here, standing before him in one of Kaiba's expensive bathrooms.
"I… I can't believe you're here, you're really here!" Yugi exclaimed, wiping the tears away. The Pharaoh placed a hand comfortingly on Yugi's shoulder.
"I missed you too, Yugi." He smiled at the smaller boy, "But I'm afraid I don't come here for a visit. Something isn't right," He began, his eyes glazing over as he remembered the darkness that had disturbed his eternal rest.
"I know Pharaoh, I feel it too." Yugi nodded. Somewhere deep inside him, he thought it might have something to do with Yukiko.
"Yugi, you must tell me what has set you on edge," The Pharaoh said, coming back to his senses. Yugi nodded.
"There's this girl…" He began. The Pharaoh raised his eyebrow at this a small smile playing across his lips. Yugi frowned at him.
"Not like that… She turned up out of nowhere," Yugi continued to explain to the Pharaoh the strange circumstances surrounding Yukiko's appearance and the fact she'd lost her memory only recently. Throughout this explanation, The Pharaoh wore a frown as he listened to the story.
"Where is this girl now?" The Pharaoh asked. Yugi shrugged.
"We're not sure. The last thing that happened ended in her leaving here with Ryo," Yugi said apologetically.
"Bakura?" The Pharaoh asked feeling tense. Something deep down told him this was not right.
"Yes, although Ryo hasn't seemed himself lately, but that's probably because he's been sneaking around with Yukiko,"
"Yugi, I don't think that's the Bakura you know at all," The Pharaoh said urgently. Yugi stared at him perplexed. What did he mean?
"When I was on the other side, I felt a familiar darkness eating away at the peace, a familiarity I couldn't place, but after all you've told me, I have a feeling Bakura is behind all this," The Pharaoh spoke urgently.
"But, Pharaoh, we defeated the evil Bakura, he was destroyed, how could he have returned?" Yugi said beginning to feel frightened.
"I don't know, Yugi. But from what you have spoken of, it feels right. The spirit of the millennium ring must have found a way back to possess the Bakura you know. We need to find him and stop him. He may have found another way to resurrect Zorc the dark one,"
Yugi stared at him wide eyed and opened mouth. Could what he was saying really be true? Could Yami Bakura be responsible for all the horrible things that had happened to Yukiko? If so, what did he want with her? And could he really have found another way to resurrect that hideous monster without using the millennium items? Yugi felt a jolt of worry rise up in his stomach.
"Pharaoh, what do we do?" Yugi asked clenching his fists. He needed to save Yukiko. She was part of the group now. She was their friend.
"Where could they have gone?" The Pharaoh asked, his eyes serious.
"Ryo's apartment, it's the only place I can think of," Yugi admitted looking down.
"I know you're worried Yugi, but we will get her back, Bakura shall not have his wicked way," The Pharaoh said placing his hand on Yugi's shoulder. Yugi looked up at him and smiled.
There was a loud spatter of urgent knocking upon the solid wood door to Kaiba's office. Kaiba scowled at the door, but did nothing more to acknowledge the noise. There was a moments pause before the erratic banging began again in a new wave of urgency.
"Kaiba!" A familiar voice cried out through the door. Kaiba glared at the door as Yugi stepped into the room. He stepped cautiously over the broken telephone his eyes wide.
"What happened?" He asked distractedly, his eyes examining the jagged pieces of plastic.
"It irritated me, and the same will happen to you, if you've come here to bug me," Kaiba spoke harshly his eyes never changing in their ferociousness.
"What do you want, Yugi?" Kaiba demanded before giving the other boy a chance to even open his mouth. Yugi stared at the CEO, surprised at how cold he was acting. If nothing else proved it, this right now showed just how much the man cared.
"It's Yukiko," Yugi began
"Not interested," Kaiba cut across him before Yugi could explain further. Kaiba directed his eyes to the paperwork laid out before him. He'd left his laptop downstairs and had had no desire to go back down and fetch it. Instead he'd busied himself looking through the sheets of papers he'd stuffed into the desk cupboards over time.
"She might be in danger!" Yugi exclaimed, trying to get Kaiba's full attention.
"She's with that Bakura kid, he's hardly the most dangerous of people," Kaiba scowled, leaning back in his chair, arms folded across his chest, glaring up at the shorter boy who was now stood on the other side of his desk.
"Kaiba, that's where you're wrong, the spirit of the millennium ring is back and he's got Yukiko!" Yugi exclaimed.
At Yugi's words, Kaiba felt a jolt of panic rise up within his chest and shudder almost painfully through him, but he forced it back, allowing his analytical mind to take control. He couldn't even begin to contemplate Yukiko been in danger, not again. The very idea scared him, him, Seto Kaiba.
"And how do you know all this information, Yugi?" Kaiba smirked, managing to hide his true feelings. He didn't like to think about her in trouble. Yugi frowned at the CEO.
"Yugi, you expected it to come to this," Yugi heard the voice of the Pharaoh speak to him inside his mind. All the time through the conversation with Kaiba, Yugi had felt the presence of the Pharaoh besides him, keeping him strong. Yugi nodded, knowing the Pharaoh was right. He'd known what Kaiba's reaction would be, and he'd dreaded it.
"The Pharaoh, he's returned. He would only be allowed to return if something was threatening the world, if we were in danger and there was need of him," Yugi said his eyes firm. He needed Kaiba to believe him, there may not be much time left. There was a moments silence as the words the trio coloured hair boy had spoken sunk in. Kaiba broke the silence first by laughing a cruel cold laugh.
"You really expect me to believe that, Yugi? You must be a fool," Kaiba smirked. Yugi felt anger bubbling up inside him.
"Kaiba! After all we've been through, after all we have witnessed? You saw the power of the seal of Orichalcos, you witnessed the shadow games, Kaiba you even saw me duel my counterpart and yet you still don't believe in magic?" Yugi cried out, slamming his hands down on the desk, his eyes serious.
"Kaiba, if there is one part of you, one tiny part that even thinks there could possibly be more to this, Will you come with me to try and save Yukiko?" Yugi finished a determined look in his wide purple eyes.
Kaiba gazed at the boy. Yugi had changed so much in the past two years. Before, Kaiba couldn't even imagine the boy been so forceful. He'd always been quite shy to be truthful, but now here he was speaking his mind and even getting irritated. Kaiba inhaled slowly. He wasn't about to admit out loud that the very idea Yukiko could be in danger had his stomach clenched, the palms of his hands sweaty and his heart racing frantically. After a few moments silence, Kaiba decided to speak his response, the only response he could give.
"Fine, I'll go with you, If only to prove you wrong," Kaiba said coldly, standing up from his seat. Yugi seemed to relax where he stood; glad he'd got through to the stubborn CEO.
"Gaah! Not without me, you don't!" A voice cried out as the door to the office opened and someone came stumbling into the room. Yugi and Kaiba both looked over to see Joey still dressed in a full suit dog costume come blundering into the room. Joey stood up straight, his paws on his hips and a large goofy grin plastered across his face. A second later a second figure ran into the room, knocking into Joey, sending them flying to the ground at Kaiba's feet. Despite himself, Kaiba couldn't help but smirk down at the two fools at his feet.
"And me!" Tristan cried out from somewhere beneath a large purple dinosaur head.
"You're not leaving me behind!" Another voice, this one female, cried out. Téa stepped into the office, her eyes gazing down at the two figures on the floor, who were now rolling around fighting with each other, Joey apparently mad at Tristan for knocking him over.
"I'm coming too, Seto!" Another voice cried out as an ebony haired teen ran into the room.
"Were you guys eavesdropping?" Kaiba demanded scowling. Joey and Tristan stopped fighting and climbed back to their feet, a grin on each of their faces.
"Well, no, not really," Joey grinned guiltily, scratching the back of his head.
"Yes, we were. We were worried about Yugi and followed him up here!" Tristan cut across him, grinning just as guiltily.
"Hey, Tristan, what ya admit to it for?" Joey glared angrily at the brunette.
"Pack it in, you two!" Téa cried out, hitting both of them round the back of their heads.
Kaiba turned his attention to his younger brother. Mokuba stared at him with a determined expression across his face. Kaiba shook his head.
"Mokuba, I want you to stay here," He began sternly.
"No way, Seto. Yukiko is my friend and I'm going to help save her," Mokuba cut across him. He stuck his chin out and glared up at his older brother, an oddly recognisable look upon his face. Kaiba examined the youngster's expression with a feeling of dismay. He knew that look, it was one he often wore himself. Sometimes he worried about the effect he himself had upon his brother. He was picking up habits.
"Fine," Kaiba replied, folding his arms. He led the way out of his office, Yugi close by his side.