Title: More Than Words – Ch. 2: Time and Tide
Author: bnomiko
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): Seto + Yami
Spoilers: none… takes place post-Noa’s arc
Warnings: swearing
Disclaimer: Yu-Gi-Oh! is the creation of Kazuki Takahashi. "Time and Tide" is performed and recorded by Basia. This is a not-for-profit fanwork and I do not own any of these characters.
Summary: Prequel to "The Boys of Summer" (but can stand alone). Yami takes Seto to get inked.
Status: 2 / 4
Archived at: http://www.phenixsol.com/Miko/FF/

This is a SHONEN-AI fic (male + male romantic relationship). If you are offended by homosexual relationships, please do not read this. Flames will be disregarded.

* * *

Author’s Notes:

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More Than Words

Chapter 2: Time and Tide

* * *

I never felt like this before
I know this is passion worth waiting for
Let love take its course
That's the only thing for us to do

It's a matter of time
Only a matter of time
It’s a matter of...
Time and tide
Nothing and no one can stop us now
For better for worse
This time I'm sure it's gonna last
Gonna last forever
We got time, oh baby
There's no rush
Gonna be a better day for us
Hang on and I will wait for you
Our love will always stay as good as new

- "Tide and Time," Basia

* * *

"Okay, we’re here." Yami pulled the white Porsche into a small parking lot in front of a nondescript strip mall. Seto peered out the window, then turned back to his lover.

"Now will you tell me what this big surprise is?"

The crimson-eyed teen shook his head. "Have a little patience, Kai-baby. You’ll find out in a minute."

The two exited the vehicle and Yami led Seto to a store at the very end of the row. Seto’s eyes widened as soon as he saw the distinctive artwork splashed all over the walls of the shop, which were prominent even from the sidewalk.

"That's a tattoo shop, Yami."

The shorter duelist took a deep breath and lifted his eyes to meet Seto’s. "Yes, it is. Happy anniversary, Baby."

One brown brow arched up. "You’re getting a tattoo?"

Yami just smiled, opened the door, and approached a young man with a green mohawk who was minding the counter. "Appointment for 9:00 AM, Yami Mutou and Seto Kaiba."

The man consulted his schedule. "Let’s see… okay, you’re here to see Boo-Boo, right? And we should have the flash around here somewhere…"

"Boo-Boo?"

"He’s the tattoo artist I selected, Seto."

"You’re going to let a guy named Boo-Boo tattoo you?"

"Us."

"You’re… a guy named Boo-Boo is going to tattoo US?"

"Hey man," interrupted the mohawk, "Boo-Boo’s really good. He does celebrities all the time. Here’s his portfolio." He shoved a black binder towards Seto, who merely scowled at it. "Now where did I… hey, Boo-Boo! Did you take that sheet of flash? The dragons?"

An enormous, heavily tattooed man came out from the back of the shop carrying a piece of illustration board. "Hey, Mutou. And you must be Kaiba? You kids haven’t even seen the design yet, have you? It’s nice… that Crawford guy did a good job," he said gruffly, flipping the board onto the counter for their approval.

Seto and Yami both stared at the illustration. Pegasus had done an excellent job painting a pair of fierce Blue Eyes who were arched into the shape of a heart. It looked like they were ready to lock up in an embrace of battle.

"Each of you is supposed to get one dragon. Ya just have to figure out where you want ‘em. So… we gonna do this, right kids?" asked Boo-Boo, leaning on the counter.

"A tattoo…" Seto turned his blue eyes to his lover.

"It's your decision." The younger teen returned the gaze.

They both turned to Boo-Boo and answered simultaneously, "Yes."

* * *

It turned out to be easier to decide on the location of the tats than deciding who would go first. Yami finally agreed to let Seto go first just so the young CEO could swing by KaibaCorp later that day.

"Just call me when you’re ready to leave, Seto. Then when I’m done, I’ll call you and you can come back to pick me up."

"Hn. Whatever."

Yami smiled. "Are you sure you don’t want me to stay and watch?"

"Yes, positive. Go away already."

Yami chuckled and strolled out the door with a wave. Seto turned and looked at Boo-Boo. "Let’s get this over with."

The big man stared back with a thoughtful look. "Nervous, kid?" Kaiba bristled in response. "You’re the one with a lil' bro named Mokuba, right?"

Blue eyes narrowed. "What about it?"

"The kid had that Crawford guy do a second painting. It got here yesterday. He asked me to show it to you but not to your loverboy." The man slid another illustration board onto the counter. "I can do this instead of the original design, if you’d like. Kid said you’d know why he had it done."

Kaiba gasped when he saw the second illustration. For a moment he felt completely overwhelmed and almost staggered as a wave of vertigo passed through him. If he hadn’t appreciated Mokuba’s insightfulness and Pegasus’ artistic abilities before, he certainly did now. The young billionaire knew he couldn’t have thought up a better design himself. "He’s right. This is the one."

* * *

Yami got the call to come back a little after 2:00 that afternoon. By the time he showed up, Seto was waiting in the lobby and working on his laptop. The brunette didn’t even look up to acknowledge his boyfriend, simply saying, "No, you can’t see it right now. Keys," and holding out his palm for the car keys.

The shorter teen pouted a little and handed over the Porsche’s keys, then asked, "So… did it hurt?"

Seto began to shrug, winced a little, and ended up shrugging one shoulder. "No. Don’t chicken out on me, Yami."

"I won’t." Then in a low, soft voice, he added, "You’ll be home on time, right Kai-baby?"

Seto began shutting down his computer and finally looked up to give his lover a slight smile. "I just have to check on something at the office. After that I’ll be home."

Yami nodded just as Boo-Boo stepped back into the lobby. "Mutou, you ready?"

"Yeah. I’ll call you when I’m done, Seto." The taller teen nodded, and Yami turned to follow the burly tattoo artist to his workstation at the back of the shop. The man had Yami strip off his shirt, then sit backwards on a chair with his arms resting atop the backrest.

"So this your first tat, kid?" Boo-Boo asked as he cleaned Yami’s skin.

"Yes."

"Nervous? Your loverboy was."

Yami smirked. "Not really."

"He only screamed a few times," the artist added, chuckling.

"That’s reassuring."

"Aw, I’m just having a lil’ fun with ya. I know what I’m doing." Boo-Boo ran a razor lightly over Yami’s left shoulder blade, then cleaned the area again before moistening it and applying the transfer. He handed Yami a mirror. "Okay, tell me if that’s where you want it."

Yami arched his back and angled the mirror to get a look at his shoulder. "It looks straight to me, but you’re the expert."

"Yep. I think it looks great. Okay, lemme just get the ink and needles ready." The big man began moving around his workstation, grabbing various implements and placing them next to his work seat. After a few minutes, everything was in place.

"Okay, kid. I’m going to apply some ointment and then we’ll get this puppy going. Any questions?"

"No."

"All right." Boo-Boo spread a thin layer of ointment over the transfer, then placed his hand on Yami’s shoulder. "I’m gonna to start the first line right now." Yami held still while the machine buzzed, leaving a slight burning sensation on his shoulder. "How was that?"

"Mm, fine." Yami rested his chin on his forearm and shut his eyes.

"All right, all right! Hey, don’t fall asleep on me."

Yami momentarily questioned Boo-Boo’s sanity, smirking to himself. "Don't worry, I won’t."

* * *

Since Seto had to stop by KaibaCorp to pick up Yami’s gift from his office anyways, he figured he could at least check in with his secretary to make sure there were no messages or other matters requiring his attention. However, she wasn’t at her desk and apparently hadn’t been in all day. Brow furrowed in displeasure, Seto headed for his office, where there was a note taped to his door. It read:

NO WORKING TODAY, SETO!

Oh, and I gave Ms. Nozaka the day off. Don’t be upset; it’s your anniversary!!

Love,
Mokuba

Underneath the first note lay another one, this time from Noa, and it read:

Seto,

Go to the Kame Game Shop; we have something we need you to pick up.

Love,
Noa

Since no one was around to see it, Seto indulged in a little head pounding against his office door. Great. First Mokuba gives Nozaka the day off, and then Noa gets Yugi involved. Again. Is everyone in on this?

With nothing better to do, Seto picked up the gift box from his credenza and then headed off to the game shop, a little miffed and very, very curious as to what the younger threesome had planned. He had already personally confirmed his restaurant reservations three times in the last two days, checked in with Isono to make sure the black Mercedes-Benz S500 stretch limousine had been washed and detailed that morning, and had Yami’s gift sitting in the passenger’s seat. What more was there?

By the time Seto arrived at the game shop, he was starting to get a headache from his jumble of thoughts. Scowling, he stomped into the shop, startling a small crowd of kids, who all looked up at him in awe.

"Oh wow, it’s Seto Kaiba!"

"Can I have your autograph?"

"Me too! Me too!"

Kaiba blinked. "Uh…" he began, but Yugi suddenly waded through the crowd and came to his rescue.

"Kaiba! You came! Ah, sorry everyone… Mr. Kaiba is really busy today; he doesn’t have time to talk to all of you I’m afraid…"

"Awwww…" chorused the kids.

Kaiba sighed and began reaching into his coat pocket for his deck. "I guess I have a little time. So… who wants to see a Blue Eyes?"

* * *

Half an hour later, Yugi resorted to dragging Kaiba to his room above the game shop.

"That was awfully nice of you to stop and talk to those kids, Kaiba, even if it threw our schedule off," he chirped cheerfully.

"Yeah, well…" Our schedule? What schedule?

"So… I assumed you agreed to get the tattoo?"

"Had it done this morning. Yami’s still in there, unless he ran off like a coward."

"Kaiba…"

"And no, you can’t see it."

Yugi just laughed at that. "That’s all right, I was the one who had Pegasus draw up the design. And I did my research on the tattoo artist just as Yami did. So I’m sure it looks fine. Anyways, we’ve got something here for you and Yami."

"Because I’m obviously incapable of getting things on my own?"

The violet-eyed teen sighed. "Kaiba, we’re… let’s just say we’re making sure that things go perfect today, okay? I know you picked out a great restaurant and I’m sure things would be just fine without our ‘interference,’ but why go for almost perfect when you can have perfect perfect?"

Kaiba arched a brow. "Whatever, Yugi."

Yugi smiled broadly as they stepped into his bedroom. Shutting the door behind them, he headed for his closet, pulling out several garment bags and laying them on his bed. "Okay, these should be marked… these three are yours, and the other two are for Yami. They’re your new outfits for tonight, handpicked by me and the rest of the gang. And you’re not leaving ‘til you get changed."

"What the…? Yugi, do I need to point out the fact that I’m capable of dressing myself? And I'm certainly not wearing anything the Mutt had a..."

Yugi just smiled and headed for the door. "I’ll be outside… let me know when you’re done."

* * *

Well, if nothing else, Yugi was right about the scheduling being off. After his trip to the game shop, Yugi sent Seto on an unexpected side trip to some salon Otogi had recommended in order to get his hair trimmed and his nails buffed. And just as he finished with that, Mokuba called him and asked him to stop by a store called Kitten in the House to pick up a special order which, much to his chagrin, turned out to be a florist’s shop with an order for 999 red and white roses.

Seto just glared at the red-haired man working the shop’s counter when the news was given to him. "My brother ordered 999 roses. 999 roses?! Who the hell orders that many flowers?!" he ranted.

Oddly enough, the redhead just returned the glare, then pushed a small sheet of pink paper towards him. Seto picked it up, expecting a receipt, but instead it was another note, this time in unfamiliar, bubbly writing. It read:

Kaiba,

I bet you’re wondering who wrote this... well it’s me, Anzu! ^_^ Anyways, I’m sure you’re wondering about the flowers. I don’t know if you-know-who ^_~ is a flower kind of guy, but we thought this would be a nice gesture. According to the guys at the flower shop, in hanakotoba red and white roses represent unity. And 999 roses means ‘I will love you until the end of time.’ Isn’t that just so romantic? I’m jealous! Well, I hope you aren’t mad about this… if you are, it’s not my fault. I just thought of the idea. Mokuba was the one who actually placed the order.

BTW – Yugi says there’s no way you’re going to be able to get all those roses home, so he suggests that you just bring the limo by there later.

Have a good time! ^_^

- Anzu Mazaki

Seto could practically hear her gushing. Grinding his teeth, he fought the urge to tear the letter into tiny little particles. As if he needed all of Yugi-tachi getting involved in his personal business. The only thing Seto found useful in the letter was Yugi's suggestion; there was no way he was going to be able to take the flowers home with him, and besides, he still needed to head back to the game shop to pick up Anzu’s co-conspirator.

By the time he picked up Yugi and arrived back at the mansion, it was nearly 6:00 PM. The reservations were for 6:30. The roses were still at the florist’s. And Yami hadn’t called yet, either.

Kaiba worried about everything and anything while transferring the garment bags from the Porsche to the limo. But at least the limo was good to go, and so was Isono, who stood by watching his frantic employer.

"I knew this was a bad idea," Kaiba muttered to himself as he handed the gift box over to Isono for safekeeping. Just then, his phone rang. "Yami?"

"I’m sorry it took so long. I just got finished here."

He glanced up at Isono. "We’re coming to pick you up right now."

* * *

The ex-spirit was still inside the tattoo shop and chatting with the mohawked man about hairstyles when the limo pulled up. Not bothering to wait for Isono to park, Seto threw open the car door and ran out to retrieve his lover himself. Yami looked over and smiled when Seto came running in.

"So you ready to go?" Seto asked.

Yami nodded, then gave Seto a once over, taking in the knee-length gray wool coat over matching slacks, pinstriped suit jacket in darker gray, crisp white shirt, and charcoal tie with a simple white dot print. "Nice suit."

Seto grunted. "You can thank Yugi-tachi for it later."

"Oh?"

"I’ll explain on the way. We have to go."

"All right." Yami nodded goodbye to the man at the counter, then called out, "Thanks, Boo-Boo!" The big man stuck his hand out from the back of the shop and waved in response.

"Let’s go, Yami." Seto hurried his lover out to the car and yanked the door open. "Get in. We’re late."

Yami complied, sinking slowly into a leather seat as the limo began rolling back into traffic. "Relax, Kai-baby. So what if we’re a few minutes late?"

Seto frowned at him just as the intercom beeped. "Yes?"

"Mr. Kaiba. Mokuba just called with directions to a... Kitten in the House? He said that…"

"Shit, I forgot! We have to stop by and pick something up." Yami gave Seto an odd look., but didn’t comment. Seto scowled, turned off the com, and then grabbed the garment bags from the rear seat and tossed them at his lover. "Yugi-tachi got you new clothes too. Put them on."

"Seto… Baby… relax."

" I AM re… Hmph. Nevermind."

Yami smiled at his lover, then pulled the clothing out of the bags. Seto watched with interest as Yami removed his Duel Monsters t-shirt and carefully put on a black button-up shirt with contrasting white collar. The brunette noted with some amusement that the shirt only buttoned up to the middle of his lover’s chest, but Yami didn't seem to mind in the least. Then the ex-spirit replaced his jeans with a pair of low-slung pinstriped trousers in black and finished off the outfit with a black cropped blazer, shuddering as the material stretched across his back. "Ouch, that didn’t feel too good... Well, what do you think?"

"Is the jacket supposed to be that tight?"

Yami was still a bit too sore to shrug. "I’m sure Yugi knows my size."

"Hm. It suits you. We should…" Seto began saying, but was interrupted by the intercom again. "Yes?"

"Mr. Kaiba, we’re at the Kitten in the House."

"All right. Could you call in and let them know we’re here to pick up the order?"

"Of course, sir."

Seto switched off the intercom and sighed, closing his eyes. Yami frowned at how frazzled his boyfriend looked. "Kai-baby, are you all right? You don’t…"

"It was Yugi’s… no wait, the clothes were Yugi’s. This was Mokuba’s… no, Anzu’s idea."

"What was?" The doors suddenly opened and a bundle of white and red roses appeared at the entrance. "Well, those are nice…"

The brunette sighed again, then moved over to the door to give directions to the employees of the flower shop. Then he waved Yami over towards the rear seat. "You might want to move over here, Yami… there’s a lot more." One of the florists, a blonde teen with a big smile, ducked into the limo and began stacking the bouquets up on the seat closest to the privacy partition.

"More?" echoed Yami, as several more bouquets appeared in the open doorway and were promptly gathered up by the blonde. "Seto… how many more?"

"I’m not sure." He had already lost track of how many bouquets had been brought in. "75 dozen more?"

"75 dozen!?"

* * *

From the front of the limo, Isono placed a call back to the mansion.

"Mokuba. Yes, we’re at the flower shop right now…. I'm sure I... it’s in the glove compartment, right? All right, I’ll double check, but I’m sure… yes, it’s in there. No, it looks like we’re running late, but if you wish, I can… mmm, all right then. I will report back once we reach the restaurant. Yes, thank you."

* * *

TBC

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Additional Author’s Notes (regarding how this chapter came up):

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May 27, 2005