the_goldenpath: made by <lj user="skyla_doragono"> (Yu-Gi-Oh! Ancient Egypt fics)
[personal profile] the_goldenpath
Title: Matarab leena ahbaab (Return our loved ones to us)
Fandom: Yu-Gi-Oh!
Pairings: Yuumeishipping ('yami' x 'hikari')
Genre: (AU) supernatural, romance
Warnings: sappy angst and melodrama.
Summary: Bakura Ryou, renowned archaeologist, has followed into the footsteps of his father, working for the government at an excavation site in Egypt. After discovering the palace of a long forgotten Pharaoh, Ryou, together with his good friend Yuugi and the local guide Malik, is suddenly pulled into a series of events that will change his life forever.

Key: ----- = scene change



“Get your hands off of me,” he snarled.

“Tsk tsk, that’s no way to talk to a loyal subject,” Bakura retorted. “I’m helping you, oh Exalted One. I should receive gratitude, not disdain.”

“Let go of me. I do not need your help.”

“Watch your tone,” Bakura’s voice dropped even lower. “Without your Puzzle, you’re as weak as a kitten. Remember who can take... or give the Puzzle to you.” He kicked at the backpack on the ground.

“Guys, everything all right?” Jounouchi’s voice echoed through the large room. “What’s taking so long?” He had gone ahead with Kaiba and the others, but had apparently returned to check up on them, lagging behind. It annoyed Bakura, but on the other hand, Jounouchi could be useful. If he had to drag the Pharaoh all the way to the surface…

“Jounouchi-kun,” he answered with a polite, light voice, “Yuugi’s not feeling very well. Can you help me carry him?”

“Sure!” Jounouchi was a lot taller and physically stronger. He reached them within seconds and all but plucked Yuugi out of Bakura’s arms.

“N-no!” he protested.

“Sorry, you’re just a small fry,” Jounouchi quipped. “You should eat more bacon, Yuugi, to get a little meat on you! Those little bites you call breakfast don’t contribute to a strong, healthy body.”

Bakura arched an eyebrow. He hadn’t realized that Jounouchi was so observant. He was just a KaibaCorp. employee, right? A buffoon, hired to do whatever Kaiba commanded him to do?

“I’ll take his backpack,” he offered and acted upon his words, picking up the heavy item from the ground.

“All right, let’s go back,” Jounouchi said. He even lifted Yuugi up as he crossed the small path with the Anubis-like statues, it was impossible to walk next to each other. Bakura was careful not to misplace his steps either; falling off the path would mean falling down an endless abyss. “Man, you’ve got so many things to sort through.”

“Excuse me?”

“All of this,” Jounouchi made a wide gesture with his arm after they had safely reached the other side. “Cataloguing this discovery, research everything, do what you archaeologists normally do…”

“Ah, yes, you’re right, Jounouchi-kun,” he smiled friendly at the other, “forgive me…just like Yuugi-kun, I’m simply overwhelmed by all of this.”

“It’s just old rocks and primitive drawings to me,” Jounouchi said, not out disdain, but simply because he didn’t care much for history in itself.

“Don’t let the Ancient Egyptians hear that,” Bakura said pleasantly and they continued their way to the surface. Malik, Honda and Kaiba were already outside in the blazing sun. A worker had handed the CEO a bottle of water and he was drinking greedily. He had a feverish glint in his eyes and as soon as he saw Jounouchi, he beckoned him.

“Jounouchi, I’ve got orders for you! The…” He stopped mid-sentence and frowned at Yuugi. “What’s wrong with him?”

“Just a little overwhelmed,” Jounouchi said. “I’ll take him to his tent and I’ll be back shortly, Kaiba.”

“I’ll do it,” Honda stepped up. “You can relay the orders to me later.”

“Sure.” Jounouchi shoved Yuugi towards Honda as if he was an inanimate object. He had stopped protesting and looked like he could barely keep his eyes open. Honda put an arm around him to keep him on his feet and started walking. Kaiba stared after him, frowning, until he turned around again and was about to resume his commands, when Bakura asked: “Where’s Malik-kun?”

“He walked off towards the tents,” Kaiba made an impatient gesture. “Jounouchi, listen. I want you to do the following…”


------------------------------------------



The excavation site had expanded tremendously ever since the tomb had been discovered. Usually, the workers would travel back to base camp for cooking, cleaning and resting for the night but ever since the discovery, they had stayed, refusing to leave. It didn’t matter to Bakura; they didn’t matter to him anyway. They could dig up any tomb or palace as much as they wanted, it was about the Items, and he was carrying the most powerful and exquisite one. He longed to get his hands on the Puzzle, but he needed the Pharaoh at full strength. There was no fun in beating a weak enemy. Oh, it wasn’t below him; he wasn’t a thief for nothing and Bakura didn’t believe in ‘honor amongst thieves’. If it served his purpose, he would kick any weak man while he was down - but not the Pharaoh. He had plans for him, and where would the challenge and satisfaction be, when the enemy couldn’t put up a fight?

Bakura grinned to himself and hurried along, looking between the tents if he could find Malik. The Tomb Keeper was going to be the first, real challenge. How much did he know… or rather, how much did he remember? Malik had always been extremely fickle and it was a major annoyance that he needed him. Bakura didn’t like to be dependent on anyone. The backpack with Yuugi’s provisions and the heavy golden box and Puzzle weighed on his shoulders like a ton of lead, and he halted for a moment, panting. His Ring flashed into existence in front of his eyes, the Item dangling from a rope around his neck, the prongs ominously chiming. Bakura straightened himself.

“I knew you would find me,” he said.

“Of course I would,” Malik answered. “Isn’t Darkness supposed to find Darkness wherever it goes?”

Bakura turned around to face him. Malik sported that infuriating grin of his; a weird combination with his blank, pupil-less eyes, but Bakura had learned through time that there was nothing blank about Malik himself, not in this state. “The High Priest saw the Ceremonial Tablets.”

“Not much of a reaction, don’t you think?”

“Kaiba has no idea about his past. He doesn’t know where he’s getting himself into. It’ll take some time for him to connect the dots, before everything comes back to him. He talked about having the Tablets removed and displayed at a museum…”

“That will never happen,” Malik interrupted him. “Long before that, his past will catch up to him. What about the Pharaoh?”

“Awakened, but weak.” Bakura didn’t mention anything about the Puzzle, let alone that he was actually carrying it in the backpack. “He’ll be at full strength soon enough… and then the game will start.”

Malik didn’t answer to that. He slightly narrowed his eyes, much to Bakura’s surprise. “What’s the matter?”

“Do you really want to start the game again? Last time…”

“Yes, last time I lost, you don’t have to remind me.” Bakura tilted his head. He hated the other being so fickle, but he needed him, for now. “Something on your mind?”

“I’m not sure…”

“We still have time. Give it a good thought.” He wasn’t going to give him much opportunity to ‘think about it’. “How about something to eat? It’s been hours since we had any breakfast.”

“Eat, yes!” Malik lit up like the glowing eye on his forehead. He seemed to have already forgotten about his earlier hesitation. Bakura suppressed any annoyance or irritation he felt. Patience, patience. He had a lot to think about himself; how much time did he have left?


----------------------------------------



He woke up because someone was tugging at his shoulder. Yuugi opened his eyes, blinking a few times. Why wasn’t he underground anymore? The last thing he remembered, was working on the Puzzle in front of those Ceremonial Tablets… he shot upright, gasping at the devastating thought that someone else had seen his Puzzle and taken it away from him.

“Easy now,” a gentle female voice reached his ears. “Don’t worry. Everything’s alright.”

“Fatima?” He recognized the nurse and his rapid heartbeat slowed down again. “My backpack?”

“It’s right here,” she said, pointing at the object wedged between his cot and the corner of the tent. “I didn’t take a peek,” she reassured him, “but it’s mighty heavy. I don’t know how you can lunge all that weight around.”

“I’m sorry,” he said, though he wasn’t sure why he was apologizing. He figured asking immediately for his backpack was kind of rude. “What happened?”

“Jounouchi brought you in,” she told him. “You were unresponsive and close to fainting. I’d say you suffered a heatstroke, but you’d been underground, in the tomb…”

“I don’t know what came over me,” Yuugi said. “I’m really not that fragile, I swear.”

She looked at him quizzically. “I don’t think you’re fragile, sahib. I think you’re one of the strongest people I know.”

“What do you mean?” he asked, flabbergasted. Fatima had always been cheerful and smiling, but now she was distant and very serious. The nurse handed him a large mug.

“Drink this,” she said. “It’s herbal tea. For a good rest, and for good dreams.”

Yuugi thanked her, but she didn’t leave. Under her watchful eye, he drank the tea; he sipped at first, the lukewarm tea tasting a bit bitter until he got used to it, and he ended up emptying the entire mug. She took it from him, a smile ghosting around the corners of her mouth as his eyes slid close.

“Sleep, Pharaoh,” she said, her voice coming from far away, barely audible. Yuugi reclined into the soft pillows, unable to stay awake. He felt safe and comfortable, and didn’t have any trouble giving into sleep.

For good dreams… yes, he remembered Fatima saying that. Gleefully, he opened his eyes again and almost crowed with delight at seeing the oasis stretch out in front of him. Yuugi started to run, straight towards the Pharaoh standing in the water. He was so beautiful, his posture confident and regal, his golden jewelry contrasting so magnificently with his tan skin. Anticipating, Yuugi opened his arms and he wasn’t disappointed; the Pharaoh returned the gesture and took him in his embrace.

“Aibou,” he said, his voice soft and gentle.

“Mou hitori no boku,” Yuugi greeted him, and as far as he was concerned, he wouldn’t mind time standing still - as long as he could spend it in the Pharaoh’s company. “You’re so strong!”

“You called me back into existence,” the Pharaoh said. “You awoke me from a deep slumber, and it is good that you did, aibou. The world might be in great danger.”

“Danger? Why do you always have to talk about such ominous things when we meet?” Yuugi hung his head in shame. Was it so bad of him to keep the Pharaoh to himself? To want to be with him and not think of anything else? He softly gasped when gentle fingers touched his chin and lifted his head up.

“My apologies,” the Pharaoh said. “I have to ask you…do you know of the tomb robber and the Tomb Keeper? Are they with you?”

“I…” Yuugi couldn’t believe it. Was the Pharaoh really talking about Ryou and Malik..? He couldn’t be talking about Kaiba or Jounouchi, or even Honda. “You mean… there are others like you? They’re not a Pharaoh?”

“They most certainly are not.” He shook his head, the heavy golden earrings shifting with the movement. “They are extremely dangerous, aibou. I recommend staying away from them… but I am afraid they will search you out. Beware.”

“There’s so much you have to tell me,” Yuugi said, ignoring the dark undertones. “Your name. Your life. How this is all possible. Why you’re so…” He stopped talking.

“Why am I so… what?” He sounded amused.

“You’re a son of the Gods,” Yuugi said, blushing hard. “Of course you’re beautiful.”

“No one has ever told me that before.” He leaned into Yuugi just a little, his fingers stroking his skin. “Your words are kind, aibou. Kindness is your greatest strength. That is why you were able to solve the Puzzle.”

Yuugi blushed even harder. “You mentioned something like that before… why was the Puzzle even there? You also said that this wasn’t your real tomb… I mean…”

The Pharaoh traced the outline of his lips with his fingers, sending shivers down Yuugi’s spine. He’d never been in a relationship before, not considering himself prime husband material, assuming he was going to be with a girl… and now he was head over heels in love with a man, a Pharaoh, someone who looked like him… and was he seriously in love? Did he even know what ‘in love’ felt like, as he hadn’t experienced something like this ever before? It had to be love, he was sure of it… but still…

“Your thoughts are escaping me,” the Pharaoh said, pursed his lips lightly and kissed him on the forehead, just above his brow. It was a simple, mere brushing of his lips over his skin, but Yuugi’s legs and knees turned into a puddle of goo and he clung at the Pharaoh, or else he’d topple over.

“I wasn’t thinking about that,” Yuugi confessed, “but it’s more than welcome.” He was delighted to see the smile on the Pharaoh’s face. He closed his eyes in anticipation of another kiss. The moment those soft lips touched his, Yuugi drifted away in a sea of paradisiacal bliss.


-----------------------------------------



Ever since Kaiba Seto had set foot in Egypt and had visited the excavation site, the camp ran much more efficient. It looked like the workers were just going here and there, but in reality they adhered to the strict schedule Kaiba’s right hand, Isono, had drawn up. More so, he had brought in extra security, expanding the site even more with tents, personnel and objects. It was daunting, and his memory was jumbled and foggy at best; but drawing upon Yuugi’s memories, he found his way to one of the sturdy kitchen tents. He knew which one to pick; the presence of the Items irrevocably called out to him, attracted him. He had chosen not to wear the Puzzle out in the open, it was too conspicuous. He wandered into the tent and located his adversaries immediately: the tomb robber and the Tomb Keeper, sitting as if they were best friends, opposite of each other.

Bakura was the first to notice him, of course; he was hyperaware of his surroundings and unlike Malik, he wasn’t sitting with his back towards the exit of the tent. He put his utensils on his plate even though he hadn’t finished eating. Malik shot him a bewildered look and turned around in his seat to see who approached their table.

“What do you know,” he said, grinning. “Company! Royal company, no less. Hungry, Pharaoh?” His voice wasn’t loud enough to be overheard by the other people in the tent: a couple of workers who were also enjoying a late lunch. Nobody sat close to this particular table.

“Raw onions and raw steak,” he said as he looked down at the food on Bakura’s plate. The uncooked meat wasn’t part of Malik’s diet, though; his plate of koshari was nearly finished. “I should have known your table manners have not improved in time, thief.”

“Why don’t you sit down,” Bakura said, suavely. “You look rather plain, Pharaoh. Have something to eat, so you can regain your strength. You’ll need it.”

“Your threats are always so amusing.” He did sit down, every movement graceful yet controlled.

“Malik, would you like to order something for our esteemed guest?”

Malik didn’t like to be send away as an errand boy, and his scrunched up, angry face was aimed directly at Bakura. Nonetheless, he got up and left the table, stomping away like a five year old.

“You wish to speak to me in private?” the Pharaoh asked dryly.

“I won’t mince my words,” Bakura shot back. Defiantly, he speared the last piece of steak with his fork and ate it. It bought him just a little bit of time, in which he wondered how the Pharaoh could be sitting at the table without wearing his Puzzle. Could he be so strong already? “I want to start the game again as soon as possible.”

“Resurrecting a dark God is not a ‘game’,” the Pharaoh hissed. “Do you really wish for this world to be plunged into oblivion? You failed before and you will fail again.”

“I wouldn’t be so sure.” Bakura crudely pointed with the fork at the Pharaoh. “Besides, your ‘victory’ came at an extremely high price. Or should I ask for your permission to call you by your first name… if you remember what it was?”

He grabbed another onion and took a large bite out of it, savoring the look of anger and abhor on the Pharaoh’s face.

“Whatever you do, whatever you are planning…” he slowly said, stressing every word. He was interrupted by Malik, who returned with a large bowl in his hands.

“There was only red lentil soup left,” he said. “You’ll have to wait until it’s dinner time.”

“… do not touch him,” the Pharaoh continued, ignoring the interruption and the bowl on the table. “You will not touch a hair on his head. Do you understand me?”

“May I remind you that you’re not in a position to command us?” Bakura sounded bored. “But if it gives you peace of mind, don’t worry too much. We know how important your vessel is. My vessel is important to me as well, and even Malik will testify for that, won’t he?”

“I won’t testify for anything,” he grumbled and tapped on the bowl. “Are you going to eat this, or not?”

“Whatever you do, whatever you’re planning,” Bakura used the same words intentionally, “choose your pawns and your people well, Pharaoh. Enjoy your dinner, for as long as you can.”


----------------------------




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