Title:  Retrieving Destiny
Part:  3/23
Author:  Murasaki Rose
Beta:  none
Genre:  Romance/Fantasy/AU
Rating:  NC-17
Spoilers:  Yami Yuugi's real name
Warnings:  Yaoi (male x male), implied Mpreg
Pairings:  YYxY, SxJxS, DxT, YBxR, YMxM, HxO, PxC, IxM
Minor Pairings:  BMGxA, BMxK, TxCxH
Disclaimer:  Here we go.  Yu-Gi-Oh and all its characters are the property of Kazuki Takahashi, Shueisha, Konami, Toei, and unfortunately, 4 Kids Entertainment.  In other words, I don't own them and I'm not making any money off of this, I'm just a fangirl having some fun.
A/N:  "text" = speech, 'text' = thought, ((text)) = telepathy

Summary:  While assisting his grandfather on an excavation in Egypt for their senior class trip, Yuugi and his friends unleash seven powerful beings from their millennia-long imprisonment.  These strange creatures, who call themselves "darkness", will bring about a series of life-changing events for the close-knit group of teenagers.

1,434 words | 2nd draft - 1,859 words

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Domino International Airport, five weeks later

Having been left with the task of keeping his roughly thirty teenage students in one place while they waited for their flight was proving to be quite the challenge for the class' homeroom teacher.  He'd managed to hold their attention for a short period of time as he'd explained the rules for their stop over in India, but after that he'd lost them again.  Fortunately for his sanity, he had some assistance in the form of eleven archaeology majors accompanying them on their flight.

Sitting off to one side of the main group was Yuugi and his friends.  For some reason they'd wanted to separate from the group a bit (Seto had just wanted to get Katsuya away from Mai Kujaku, a pretty blond who had student taught a couple of lessons to their class.  She also liked to flirt with Jou.) and get their bearings.  A strange sense of anticipation had settled over the small group waiting quietly and semi-patiently for Yugi's grandfather and his friend Professor Yoshimori (1) to return with their tickets.  Each one the seven teens feeling that after this trip, nothing would ever be the same.

The other senior classes had been both envious and relieved that their class had been given such an opportunity, but overall they were relieved.  Instead of spending their summer vacation digging up artifacts in the hot Egyptian sun, they'd be heading out to the more popular vacation spots like Kyoto, Tokyo or Hokkaido so most of their grumbling was superficial at best.  Not to say that Yugi's entire class was excited about the trip either.  Several of their classmates had wanted to pass on the trip in favor of a more relaxing trip, but in the end their parents had overridden their decisions.  Many of their classmates were surprised that Kaiba was going with them and willingly at that.  Most had expected him to turn down the trip in favor of whisking his boyfriend off on a private vacation.

His back against the wall, Seto tightened his grip around Katsuya's waist while tossing icy glares at Mai any time she got too close.  He knew that Jou was his, body, mind, heart, and soul, and that there was no way the blond woman could ever come between them but that didn't make him any less jealous.  Still, for Katsuya's sake he'd endure the harpy's presence and use the trip as planned to help his pup sleep well again.

Stifling a sigh, Jou snuggled into Seto's possessive embrace, allowing his auburn-haired lover to quietly vent his jealously.  He actually thought it was cute that his boyfriend was jealous of his junior high crush.

x-x-x-x-x-x-x

Yuugi sighed in relief as he flopped down face first onto his bed, "Unless the building catches on fire, I am not moving until tomorrow," he declared, his voice muffled slightly by the bedding.  Jet lag was hell, especially on someone not used to travel.

A sympathetic groan and an exhausted grunt from the room's other two occupants reached his ears.  Letting his head fall to one side, Yuugi could see Ryou curling up in a ball on the bed next to his, the silver-haired teen already attempting to fall asleep, and was just barely able to see Hanasaki kicking off his sneakers in his peripheral vision.

"Hey guys," Ryou began, waiting for them both to acknowledge him before continuing.  "Do you . . . do you get the feeling like we're coming home?"

Yuugi thought about it for a moment before answering, "Kinda.  It almost feels like we're supposed to be here."

"I don't feel quite the same, but I do know where you're coming from," Hanasaki answered.  "I feel very welcome.  Like I've been here visiting a lot.  It's really weird . . . I don't even feel this comfortable visiting my relatives," the teen admitted, sitting up briefly to remove his glasses and place them on the bedside table.

"I know what you mean," Ryou replied, Yuugi nodding in agreement next to him.  "Maybe we'll understand more when we aren't so tired."

"Yeah."  The other two teens agreed, shutting off the lamps by their beds and falling asleep almost instantly too tired to even bother climbing under the covers.

x-x-x-x-x-x-x

In the room next door, not all the occupants were as ready for sleep.

Palms and nose pressed against the glass, Jonouchi's honey-brown eyes excitedly scanned the street below them.  "Ya think we could walk around the city for a bit?" he asked, bouncing slightly on the balls of his feet.

"Man, how can you even think of walking?" Honda groaned from his bed more than happy to stay there.  "Don't you even feel the jet-lag?"

"Yeah.  I'm just too excited to sleep!"

The brunet stared at his best friend in shock, "You have got to be kidding me!  Sugoroku-jiisan was waaay more excited about this trip than you and he's already asleep!" he exclaimed, jerking a thumb in the direction of the already slumbering adult.

Leaving the window, Jou walked over and plopped down next to Honda, "Don't you get the feeling that something important is gonna happen?  Like there's something that's been waiting for you to get here?" he asked, his expression serious.

Honda sighed, knowing full well that Jonouchi wouldn't leave him alone in less he gave an honest answer.  "Okay.  I have been feeling kinda weird since we landed, like I've been gone on a long trip and just got home.  Which is nuts since this IS a long trip from home."  He paused for a moment before continuing, "BUT right now the thing I'm feeling the most is jet lag."

"Which is precisely why we are going to bed, pup," Seto interjected, exiting the steam-filled bathroom already dressed for bed.  Crossing the room he grabbed Jou by the arm and hauled him over to the remaining unoccupied bed.  "Sleep.  Now," he told the blond in a tone that brooked no arguments.

Sighing, Jou turned to Honda one last time, "You sure you don't mind us sharing a bed?"

The brunet shrugged, "It's like Sugoroku-jiisan said, as long as all you two do is sleep, that's fine with me."

"Thanks man," Jou replied, diving under the covers and snuggling up to his boyfriend.  Seto reached up and switched off the lamp with the arm not curled around Katsuya and the teens settled in for the night.   All was quiet . . . for about a minute.

"Hey Seto?"

"Go to sleep Katsuya," Seto interrupted the blond before he could even get started.

"Aww."

x-x-x-x-x-x-x

Early the next morning the students were hustled out of bed and down to the hotel's cafe for breakfast.  Over a hearty meal of Fooll Mudammes (2) the sleepy teens were given their itinerary for the dig.  As they'd been expecting, much of their time would be spent digging, cleaning, and cataloging items, but they would also be helping with the cooking, dishes, and other mundane tasks necessary in keeping the operation running.  There was some grumbling heard after that fact had been divulged, but it was cheerfully ignored by the adults in charge.

After breakfast the students piled onto a bus and headed south for the small village of Mit Rahina (3).  They arrived in time for a late lunch and after a light meal then took a brief tour of the ruins before meeting up with their contact from the dig site.  The whole group was then divided between another, smaller bus and several SUVs.  It was a tight fit, especially considering that each vehicle had been loaded with supplies for the camp, but with a little creative rearranging they managed to squeeze everyone in.

All the high school students had been crammed on to the bus, everyone sharing a seat and sometimes even a lap to make room.  Combining these ultra-cramped conditions with the sweltering heat on a long, bumpy, un-air-conditioned ride made for a group of very cranky and miserable teens.  In an attempt to alleviate the boredom and distract them from their misery, Sugoroku regaled the group with tales of curses, grave robbers, and all manner of legends.  While some of the teens scoffed at the stories, most of them were completely enraptured, just as Yuugi was every time he heard them.

Some time later, they finally arrived at the campsite with Sugoroku imparting one last bit of wisdom to the teenagers, "Just a warning . . . Pegasus is a bit . . . eccentric."

Now Yuugi, Kaiba, Ryou, and Jonouchi had all met the man at last year's Duel Monsters World Championship and knew what the elder was talking about but as for the others . . .

Hanasaki tilted his head in confusion, "How so, Sugoroku-jiisan?"

The elderly man began chuckling, "Oh, you'll see."

The man in question was standing just outside the main tent, eagerly awaiting his special guests.  When the bedraggled teens reached the tent he greeted them in his typical fashion.  "Welcome everyone!" he exclaimed, sweeping his arms about grandly.  "I am Pegasus J. Crawford, creator of Duel Monsters and sponsor for this dig.  You are about to participate in what could be the greatest archaeological find of the century!  The discovery of the lost dynasty of Egypt, without a doubt this will be something for the history books!"

Honda's jaw dropped as he stared at the older man in mute shock, THIS was eccentric?!

A delicate, feminine giggle broke the stunned silence that had settled over the group.  "Don't mind my husband, he's just very excited about this project," a beautiful blond woman explained, her blue eyes shining with mirth.  "It's a pleasure to meet everyone, I'm Pegasus' wife, Cynthia Crawford," she greeted them cheerfully, barely able to contain her own delight.  Her husband's joy was contagious, spilling over their bond in waves and adding to her own.  She'd never been amongst so many "lights" like herself before and the sensation alone was almost making her giddy.

"Now I know all of you are exhausted from your trip so I'm going to hand you over to Malik Ishtar," she continued, gesturing to the slender teen standing next to her.  The boy looked to be the same age as the other teens with below the shoulder, corn silk blond hair that fell in similar jagged chunks to Ryou's, but instead of the the same jagged bangs, his feathered softly.   "Malik will be showing you where your tents are and also help you get settled in."

"Yo," the lavender-eyed Egyptian greeted with a short wave.  "You guys can come with me and I'll show you where to drop your stuff."

Shouldering his rucksack, Yuugi headed after the other teen, his friends following close behind.  Quickly catching up, Yuugi introduced himself and the others, pleased at having the opportunity to make a new friend.  "So what brings you out here, Malik-kun?"

"I didn't get much of a choice," he told them, much to their confusion.  "My older brother Rishid is in charge of the dig," the blond Egyptian sighed.  "So I ended up stuck in the same boat as you guys," Malik grinned wryly at the other teens as he continued, "free slave-labor."

-

November 11, 2008
-edited April 21, 2009

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1- Also not an OC.  He appears early on in the manga and also in Season 0.

2 - traditional Egyptian breakfast comprised mainly of  Fava beans, served with pita bread and occasionally egg.

3 - Mit Rahina, a small village located to the south of Cairo, this is where most of the scant remains of Memphis can be seen.  Memphis itself was once the capital of Egypt and was believed to have been a massive city that thrived and survived for three thousand years.