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Title: Chained by the clock
Theme number and theme: # 8, Time
Genre: general, introspective
Rating: M
Warnings (if any): none
Characters: Yami no Bakura, Yami no Yuugi
Short summary: There's always time to get to know your enemy better.


I pour the tea. I can be polite if I want to. Most of the time, I choose to be rude and curt - I don’t care for nice manners, unlike my yadonushi-sama, my Host. But even for him, I wouldn’t pour tea. Today, I’m in the rare company of a Pharaoh; ‘Other Yuugi’, as he calls himself, as he doesn’t know his own name. It’s a pity, truly; I’d like to know his name as well.

“I hope you like it,” I say pleasantly. “It’s Gyokuro tea. Cultivated only in the Uji District, it generally sells for $650 for 1000 grams.”

He wraps his long, slender fingers around the teacup and lifts it up. He’s not speaking; maybe he’s wondering where I got the tea from, maybe he’s wondering why I invited him for tea in the first place. He inhales the delicate aroma though, and sips gently, sampling the magnificent taste. I appreciate him taking his time to enjoy the exquisite blend, not gulping it down like some boorish commoner. But ah, well, this is the Pharaoh I’m entertaining; not a normal person, not a commoner by far.

It’s a funny thought, actually. Two Kings at one table and we’re gauging each other’s reactions carefully, examining and weighing our words and our emotions. He’s got every reason to distrust me, of course. After what happened during Duelist Kingdom, he regards me with a healthy dose of suspicion. Still, his curiosity got the better of him, hence his acceptance of my invitation.

I present him a small plate with dates on it, neatly arranged and cut into thin slices, as in the spokes of a wheel. Of course he takes a slice; how often would he be able to eat this product from his ancient homeland in the Mutou household? I watch him savor the taste.

“Unfortunately, it’s not exactly as it used to be at home,” I say, and to my disappointment he doesn’t react to ‘home’. He knows so little, and deep down I’m aching to fill him in on some details, but now it’s not the time. Not yet.

“You certainly have made a great effort,” he says, meeting my gaze, “to create a comfortable setting.” His hand goes to his chest thought, fingers touching the heavy chain around his neck.

I’m not interested in his Sennen Puzzle, even though I wear my Ring out in the open as well; we’re both wielders of these Items, why not show it? “I am glad that you did not choose to have your host involved in all of this.”

Well, who did all the grocery shopping and cutting the dates..? Does he really think I bothered to do such menial tasks? It’s a moot point though, but I make a mental note to thank my yadonushi-sama later. I can hear him humming in the back of my mind, oblivious to what’s going on.

“I’m just as protective of my host as you are of your vessel,” I tell him, a little airily. He purses he lips, almost like a pout; he doesn’t like his precious partner to be referred to as a mere ‘vessel’. I don’t care. His oh-so-wonderful bond with his sickly-happy friends is going to kill him in the end, even if I have to take personally care of it. “We are much more alike than you think.”

He’s not happy with that thought at all. Poor Pharaoh, his face is like an open book to me.

“What is your intention with all of this?”

I expect him to throw his tea at me, dainty and huffing like a young girl, rejected by her object of affection. It’s not that I think of him like that, though I have entertained the possibilities in my mind, but he reminds me of a young child, covering up his innocent-naivety by acting extremely confident and secure. But I know how far from innocent he truly is. It’ll be revealed to him, all in due time.

“Kaiba announced his plans for Battle City yesterday.”

“Are you going to participate?” The anxiety in his voice is from excitement, not from fear. I have to give him credit for at least one thing: he won’t back out of a challenge quickly, and he enjoys facing tough opponents. I’m not going to disappoint him in that department.

“I might.” I take precious time to enjoy my cup of tea; my Host was very surprised when he found it in one of his kitchen cabinets, not remembering ever having bought it. Of course I didn’t make him pay for it; how could he ever afford it?

“Are you after the God Cards?” His confusion is adorable. I’m not sure where he got that knowledge from, perhaps he spoke to Kaiba, or he has obtained that information through his vessel… it doesn’t matter, it’s not that important. I don’t care for the God Cards anyway. “Last time, you wanted to take my Puzzle.”

Again that stroke with his fingers, this time touching the artifact, in a protective, possessive manner. I know it all too well.

“Don’t worry,” I say even though my fingers are itching to take the Item away from him. And choke him with that chain while I’m at it. Patience, sweet patience. I’ve got all the time in the world. “I’ll make my true intentions known, soon…” My voice trails off on purpose. He sends me an annoyed look, but I refuse to elaborate.

“Who are you?” he asks brusquely. I send him a pleasant smile in return.

“That’s for me to know.” Delicious, delicious tea. “You’ll find out. You still have some time left.”

His lips curl into a snarl, but he doesn’t speak. His posture is rigid though, and I revel in his ignorance. He doesn’t know what I’ve got in store for him, and I intend it to enjoy it to the fullest. I offer him the plate with the dates once more, and it takes him visible restraint to not tremble as he picks another slice. I shouldn’t underestimate his willpower, I remind myself. He battled Pegasus and his mind tricks, and he emerged as the winner. I hadn’t really expected anything otherwise; even though he’s barely aware of it, there’s millennia old of Pharaoh-ness instilled in him, so to say - he has retained his Pharaonic mindset and composure throughout all that time, centuries of time, wandering around in his Puzzle. He plays to win. He knows how to win.

I’m not a bad opponent myself. I’m going to give him hell. The reason why I invited him over, was not to antagonize him. Not to befriend him. Not to butter him up. I want to gain insight in my enemy, in what he’s thinking, in what he’s doing… so far, he’s as docile as a lamb; he doesn’t know yet, he doesn’t realize all the stakes, the entire magnitude of the game. Or does he, and he’s playing me now, by pretending to be ignorant? It’s exciting, it’s thrilling. No shadows at the moment, no dark, mysterious realms - just the two of us, seated opposite each other, politely having tea.

“Will you tell me how much… or how little time is left?” He knows I know, and he recognizes me as a challenger. Good. I almost want to give him a pat on the shoulder.

“Just wait until Battle City,” I say ominously. Damn, but his eyes are hypnotizing. “Then the game will start.” I can’t really determine whether he’s somehow mocking me or overestimating me. I’d like to strip him of his arrogance and dig deep into his psyche, establishing once and for all what he truly thinks of me. I didn’t think I’d care, but I do. I want to know where I stand. I want to know what my starting position is in this game. He has his friends. He has his vessel. He has already gathered more people around me than I’ve ever had in my life. I like to work alone, but perhaps this time, I need some allies myself. This time. This time it’s going to be one hell of a ride.

“I thank you for the tea,” he says and stands up from the chair. I follow his example. We’re not bowing to each other for obvious reasons.

“You’re welcome,” I say, even though it’s the biggest lie in the entire universe. I’m proud of myself, for not jumping at him to kill him, and to receive him as a guest in my house instead. I can’t help myself from taunting him a little, however. “Take good care of yourself.”

The look on his face is priceless. I shut the door quietly. I don’t allow my yadonushi-sama to take control of his body again so soon. I have to think. Time has taught me to be cautious, time has taught me to make plans, and plan for the absolutely worst thing that could ever happen.

Maybe I won’t need them after all, and I’ll have to improvise… perhaps time’s running out faster than I thought.


This entry was originally posted at http://the-goldenpath.dreamwidth.org/83090.html. Please comment there using OpenID.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 12th, 2017 12:10 am (UTC)
This was amazing!!!
May. 12th, 2017 04:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much for reading and commenting, dear!! ♥
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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