Title: Taboo
Author: bnomiko
Rating: PG-13 / R
Pairing(s): Main: Noa + Mokuba, Seto + Yami. Minor: Yamato + Kouya, Anzu + Yugi, Mai + Jou, Malik + Bakura
Spoilers: none
Warnings: swearing
Disclaimer: Yu-Gi-Oh! is the creation of Kazuki Takahashi. "Taboo" is from the musical Taboo, by Boy George. "We Didn't Start the Fire" is from the musical Movin' Out, by Billy Joel. This is a not-for-profit fanwork and I do not own any of these characters.
Summary: No one is happy with the latest change in the sleeping arrangements.
Status: 5 / ?
Archived at: http://www.phenixsol.com/Miko/FF/

* * *


Ch. 4: We Didn't Start the Fire

* * *

Dinner that Saturday evening was a tense affair. No one was very hungry even though Yami had made a nice meal, and the usual sound of voices in animated conversation had been replaced by the occasional scraping of silverware on plates as food was pushed around. Seto didn't even try to eat despite Yami's whispered encouragement over their mind link; he just glared at his plate as if it had done something to offend him.

Eventually Noa and Mokuba gave up on pretending to eat. Noa went first, clearing his place at the table quickly before disappearing into what was now his room down in the guest wing. Mokuba followed suit a minute later, but when he went to leave, Seto suddenly looked at him oddly and asked, "Where are you going?"

"To my room," Mokuba replied slowly.

Blue eyes flickered to the half-eaten plate of food. "Not until you finish your dinner."

"I'm not hungry."

"I refuse to watch you starve yourself."

Yami frowned as Mokuba stood still for a moment in uncertainty. He had a bad feeling about...

"You're not eating, Nii-sama," Mokuba pointed out in a soft voice.

Seto suddenly lifted his head and fixed his gaze on his brother, feeling uneasy as he noticed that Mokuba had his head down a little, as if cowed. But he shouldn't have been frightened... well, perhaps he couldn't help it considering everything that had gone on... Really, he was right though. Seto hadn't felt like eating, so of course it made perfect sense that Mokuba thought it was acceptable to follow his example even though it wasn't. There seemed to have been a lot of that going on lately.

Mokuba held his breath as he waited for Seto to respond, but when he didn't say a word, the black-haired teen eventually gave up and left to go up to his room. Disappointed, Yami watched him depart, then turned to Seto. The brunette was tense, his jaw clenched so tightly now that Yami could practically hear his teeth grinding.

Seto... Cautiously, the former Pharaoh put his hand on his lover's arm, but Seto suddenly pulled away.

"No, Yami."


"I've been thinking... we can't keep going on like this." Yami's brows knit in confusion as Seto paused to take in a deep breath before continuing. "I've decided to have Mokuba move into my bedroom."

Yami felt his heart suddenly sink at what Seto was implying. "Wait... what? Then where am I..."

Seto mentally winced at the sudden wave of unhappiness emanating from his boyfriend. He knew Yami wouldn't be happy... hell, he was pissed about it too! But he couldn't think of a better solution short of installing video cameras throughout the house or something like that, and that didn't sound any better.

Trying to sound as diplomatic as possible since he had no intention of changing his mind, Seto stated again, "Mokuba is moving into my room. But I'll set up a nice room for you and... you can decorate it however you want. You like doing that sort of shit, right?"

"Shall I pencil you in for sex once a week while we're at it?" Yami muttered darkly. He abruptly stood up, scowling. Seto had some nerve making a decision like that and then trying to placate him with some half-assed "solution" which really didn't even address the problem at hand.

Seto pinched the bridge of his nose and squeezed his eyes shut. "Yami... don't make this harder than..."

"I hate sleeping alone; you know that, but... never mind that. More importantly, how would this make things any better between you and Noa and Mokuba?"

"I..." The young CEO shrugged, his tensed muscles making the movement almost spasmodic. The last thing he wanted to do was to alienate the one remaining person in the household that he could rely on, but he didn't know what to say, what Yami wanted to hear.

Yami sighed and sat back down, reacting to Seto's confusion and melancholy and pushing aside his anger in favor of compassion. "Baby... you can't just lock them up in separate rooms and hope the 'problem' goes away."

"I'm not! It's not... that's only part of it."

Yami cocked his head and thought back to what he and Noa had talked about earlier that day. Does it bother you so much that they got together? he finally settled on asking, not wanting to plunge into the heart of the matter too quickly.

Doesn't it bother you? Seto shot back.

Honestly... no, it really doesn't. Now that I've thought about it, I guess I saw it coming. Just the way that they...

Seto's eyes suddenly narrowed, and he swung his predatory gaze around until he found his target. "You saw it coming and you didn't tell me? Does NO ONE feel the need to tell me anything around here?!" he roared, forgetting in his anger that he too had spotted some telltale signs and had failed to piece them together.

"What was there to tell? You saw how they were around us. There wasn't anything that was THAT unusual. And I only got my confirmation the same time you did."

"If you even suspected... you should have told me! What made you think that I would not care?"

"I didn't think it would matter," Yami retorted, his frustration mingling with Seto's outrage like gasoline and fire.

"When it comes to Mokuba, I don't expect you to fucking think, I expect you to act!" Seto roared.

"What's that supposed to mean?!"

"Oh, I'm sorry, was that too complicated for you?" Seto said snidely, a smirk twisting his lips.

The ex-spirit quickly jumped to his feet again. "Seto Kaiba, I won't tolerate you talking down to me like I'm one of your flunkeys! I don't care how upset you are; it's not accepta..."

"If you were, I'd fire you!" The brunette was standing now as well, using every inch of his height to tower over the shorter duelist. "You have no right to make decisions in my stead EVER. Mokuba is more important to me than anything; I'll never be too busy to... to..." His voice trailed off in sudden uncertainty as his brain quickly went over the last several weeks, and he realized... he really hadn't been around as much as he should have been. The near completion of the new theme park had forced him to work longer hours, and the first person he sought out when he arrived home was no longer Mokuba. It hadn't been Mokuba for what, months? A year? More than that? And Mokuba no longer came running out of the front door to ask him how his day was.

Feeling as if someone had suddenly knocked the air out of his lungs, Seto physically staggered back a step. What was he doing? He shook his head, trying to ward off his nausea, and then suddenly realized that Yami was still there, eyes blazing with anger.

When you are ready to talk to me like a reasonable person, Yami ground out, his nerves completely frazzled by the entire exchange, come find me in OUR room. Then with a great show of restraint, he cleaned up his place at the table and stalked out of the kitchen.

* * *

Mokuba was a bit startled when Seto showed up in his room several minutes after he had left the kitchen table. At first, he thought his older brother was just there to insist that he come down and eat, but from the look on his face, he had something bigger on his mind, and was finally going to say it.

Uh oh, here it comes.

The black-haired teen began mentally fumbling for things to say. He still wasn't prepared to explain himself, but he'd do his best. Hopefully Seto would let him say his piece and not go completely ballistic over it.

A painful silence settled into the space between the two brothers, and Mokuba found himself holding his breath as if even that slight disturbance in the air would trigger something to happen.

Seto looked a little uncertain as well, and that uncertainty carried over into his voice when he finally did speak. "Noa's... moving back into this room..."

Mokuba's breath hitched... then he realized that there had to be a catch. No way was Seto going to let Noa room with him again just like that. Unless maybe Noa or Yami had somehow talked to Seto and... and what? Nii-sama's not easy to convince... of anything! "He is?" he asked, a bit of hope leaking into his voice.

"And you're moving into mine."

Huh?? That made no sense at all! And besides, Mokuba definitely didn't want to room with Seto and... "Wait, what about Yami?"

That put a frown on the young CEO's face. "Yami's... well, don't worry about it."

Hearing that just made Mokuba worry more. The rooming with Seto part wasn't a problem in and of itself, but apparently Yami was being booted in conjunction with that, and wasn't that exactly what Mokuba was afraid of? It was stupid; there was no good reason for it! Of course he knew Seto and Yami had frequent and boisterous sex... that much was obvious to anyone with working eyeballs or eardrums. But that certainly didn't have anything to do with his interest in Noa, and it didn't make them want to do the same. Why couldn't Seto understand that?

The younger Kaiba had to protest. "Nii-sama, I don't want to move into your room. And Yami shouldn't have to move out."

"That isn't up for debate." Seto crossed his arms over his chest.

"Well it should be," Mokuba mumbled under his breath, hoping that Seto hadn't heard him after it was already too late to take it back.

"Mokuba, I want you where I can keep an eye on you."

Because you don't trust me anymore, Mokuba thought sadly, though he wasn't willing to say it out loud. He didn't want to hear just how disappointed his big brother was with him. It was hard enough being disappointed in himself.

Seeing as Mokuba was apparently debating with himself on whether or not he would say anything else in response, Seto waited a minute, then decided to accept Mokuba's silence as agreement with his decision.

* * *

After heading back downstairs to give a stoic Noa the same news he had just given Mokuba, information that was received and processed and sealed with a nod, Seto ran out of excuses and wandered up to his bedroom in search of his boyfriend. As much as he hated admitting he was wrong, he realized that he had been way out of line in picking a fight with Yami. He didn't know why he had done it... he'd just been feeling stressed out, and Yami getting all upset at him when he was only trying to find a reasonable solution didn't help matters any. But Seto didn't want Yami to be mad at him no matter whose fault it was; it was hard enough for him with things strained between him and Mokuba and Noa...

Sure enough, Yami was in the master bathroom and tossing some of his essentials into a plastic bag with more force than necessary, his lips pressed tightly together. As angry as he was, he was going along with his boyfriend's wishes and moving into another room. Or... perhaps he really had had it with Seto's attitude and was going to leave. As in move out completely. It made Seto nervous. Sure, he knew that Yami wasn't going to leave, Yami had promised him that much, but... better to be safe than sorry, right?

The brunette leaned against the doorframe with a casual expression, though truth be told he just felt more secure with something propping him up. "You're really moving out?" he asked, the question purposefully double edged.

Yami looked up, his eyes narrowing at the implication. "I'm doing what you demanded. But..." and his lashes fluttered down for a second before he looked back up with a slightly softer expression, "don't think for a moment that I'm leaving you. I'm not, even if you ARE a complete ass at times."

Seto couldn't help but let a sigh slip out as relief flooded through him, though just as quickly he regained his composure and straightened up to meet Yami's gaze dead on. He wasn't going to change his mind, but... he knew he had been way out of line. And it wouldn't hurt to swallow his pride and smooth things out a bit. "I shouldn't have said... I didn't mean those things. You're not an idiot. I never thought you were. I just..."

"I know you're frustrated. Just... even thought I know you didn't mean it, it still... was unpleasant to hear such things being directed at me." Giving up on packing for the moment, Yami took a few steps toward his taller lover. But believe me, I wasn't trying to withhold information from you, and I've never tried to make decisions in your place where Mokuba's concerned. Yes, I had a hunch that something was going on, but... well, what if I *had* said something to you and it turned out that I was wrong? Would that have been any better?

I know, I know... Seto couldn't help but respond to the hurt in Yami's voice, closing the small gap between them and wrapping his arms tightly around Yami. I'm sorry. I didn't mean it.

Yami leaned into the embrace, sliding his hands up underneath Seto's shirt to gently stroke his back. Seto, you have to talk to them sooner or later about this. This... new living arrangement of yours may work for a day or two, but then what? It's not solving anything.

Seto just shook his head a tiny bit. He wasn't sure how to respond. He didn't do well with this sort of thing. What could he say when Mokuba obviously didn't trust him enough to talk to him anymore? Was it even possible to earn that trust back, or had he lost it forever years ago and had simply failed to understand how final that was? His head hurt so bad. But Yami's hands on his back were a welcome and familiar thing, a bit of comfort that he sorely needed, and he couldn't resist arcing into the touch a little even as his mind reminded him that he was likely to be deprived of Yami's caresses for a long, long time.

As if to confirm that thought, Yami kissed him on the underside of his jaw and said, Well, if you're really going to insist on doing this, I'd rather move in with Noa than have my own room.

Why? It wasn't like there was a shortage of bedrooms in the mansion.

I just... don't sleep well alone.

Seto could only sigh. He knew that. He just didn't... couldn't let that dissuade him from what he had to do. Truth be told, he was going to miss Yami just as much. So he tilted his head downward for a kiss that was part apology and part longing, and hoped Yami would understand.

Yami accepted it, though a bit hesitantly at first, then his hands began drifting a little further south than where they been. A small portion of Seto's brain told him that he should stop things before they got any further, but that was quickly overridden by the rest of his brain reminding him that at least he was in his room, so Mokuba and Noa weren't going to be corrupted by what they were doing. Then his dick seconded that vote with a hungry nod and... oh hell, why not?

With his hands now firmly planted on Yami's ass, Seto groaned into the kiss and flicked the tip of his tongue across Yami's lips, seeking entry, which was quickly granted. In the meantime, the ex-spirit's hands moved around and upward until he had them on Seto's chest, his palms rubbing hardening nipples up and around in an erotic pattern. After they broke apart to pant for breath, a wicked gleam flashed in Yami's eyes and he leaned over and began unbuttoning Seto's shirt using his mouth, his tongue lifting the button flap and holding it in place while his teeth pushed the button through with amazing efficiency.

Oh yeah... Seto licked his lips. He knew how good Yami was with his mouth, but it was so hot seeing him put on a little show like that. Not that he needed any help in getting aroused - truthfully he just wanted release and soon - but he always appreciated the little unexpected things that Yami did to tease and tempt him. And this was definitely one of the more erotic little moves he had, something that truly ought to be savored. Enthralled by the promise of pleasure, neither he nor Yami heard the soft padding of footsteps until it was too late.

"Okay Nii... uh..." Mokuba appeared in the doorway, his backpack falling from his slack grasp onto the floor, his face coloring a little. "Oh, sorry!"

Seto reacted by shoving Yami away so hard that the kneeling teen lost his balance and fell sprawling onto the floor. Immediately he was caught in a dilemma of who to turn to first. Mokuba looked embarrassed to be catching them in the act once again, and Yami... well, if Yami was mad before, he was ten times angrier now.

It was too late to do anything about Yami's hurt feelings, deprived arousal, and soon-to-be sore hip he supposed, though part of him protested the decision. But Seto knew who he had to address first anyway. So he turned to Mokuba and said, "It's okay, Yami was just leaving."

"Oh." Gray eyes flickered over to the sour-faced former Pharaoh.

"Yeah." Seto went to give Yami a hand up, but Yami quickly batted it away, his eyes flashing in warning like brake lights. Yami? I...

Forget it, Yami snapped, frustrated and pissed off all over again. It was one thing to know that Mokuba was Seto's top priority as was to be expected, and another to just be pushed aside like he didn't matter at all. Besides, he didn't see how this was helpful to Mokuba in any way... the poor thing looked so guilty, probably blaming himself for the way Seto reacted. So he grabbed the bag off the bathroom counter, said a terse "Good night," and walked out of the room rapidly.

As soon as Yami was gone, Mokuba turned to Seto with an incredulous look, the guilt weighing even more heavily on him now. He hadn't meant to walk in on them... they had been quieter than usual, and it wasn't like they were actually doing IT. That was never even an issue before. Was this Seto's idea of setting a "good example" for him, to take things to the other extreme and push away his boyfriend as if he didn't count for anything? What type of example was that? He wouldn't dare break up with Yami, would he? Shocked, the black-haired teen stammered, "How can you just... just..."

Mokuba's voice trailed off as Seto gave him a look that was partially angry and partially unhappy. Well, mostly unhappy actually. It lasted all of a second before Seto turned away and said in a surprisingly steady voice, "Don't worry about it. Start getting ready for bed, okay?" And then he too walked out of the bathroom, leaving Mokuba dumbstruck... and feeling worse than ever.

* * *


Author's Notes:

May 27, 2006