Author's Note: I do not own Yu-Gi-Oh or any of the characters mentioned here.
I watch from afar at the dazzling silver vision in front of me. It's such a good color on him. Perfect. As if the hue was meant for him and him alone. The metallic shade most certainly complemented his pewter-colored hair, and his eyes…don't get me started on his eyes.
I stand coolly; watching him duel without the vaguest trace of an expression. I hope. No one can know. No one. No one would really understand my infatuation anyway, and I can't afford to lose my rep.
At least, that's what I'm desperately trying to convince my horribly conflicted self right now.
He just won. I know it. And, it wasn't just the obvious that tipped me off. Somehow, a whole other invisible aura surrounds his body. The atmosphere tingles. It just does. I know that someone of my caliber should have a better explanation, but simply possessing the feelings that I do has already undermined my logic.
The crowd around me is dispersing. I know I should leave too, but I am quite rooted to the spot at present. Still watching him.
Finally, I force myself out of my trance and begin the long walk back to my dorm. I could kick myself the entire way.
How can I be interested in Aster Phoenix?
That very question haunts me--no matter where I am or who I'm with. However, I was successfully keeping any bit of suspicion from entering the minds of my classmates and intended to keep it that way.
During active studying or socialization or dueling, my mind is kept clear. But, whenever I am alone, I wish I was with him. Oh, yes. My thoughts, heart, and even body were all about betraying me lately.
It was the worst at night. Like right now, at 1:04 AM, with my hands grasping at the bedspread. I simply cannot sleep. My eyes stubbornly remain open.
Exasperated, I turn them towards the inky ceiling.
I must be the most pathetic human being at this school…
Out of the blue, a sharp bang occurs.
Groaning, I peer over at the window and nearly faint. The very person that my mind won't disengage from is now currently standing right outside my window. Huh. The moonlight is causing his hair to shimmer and intensifying the already rich blue hue of his eyes. A soft and curious smile curves his lips. It was as if he was tempting me to look away and ignore his unearthly presence—something I already knew I could not accomplish. He knew it as well.
Automatically, I get to my feet and open the window. He takes the invitation and gracefully swoops inside just like his namesake.
What do I say now?
First, I covertly pinch myself to prove that this is reality instead of an extremely vivid waking dream. Second, I mull over my words. Many times in so few seconds.
Oh, I never was good with this emotionally-charged stuff…
Thankfully, he starts the inevitable conversation that must come. I am standing with another person—a person whom I secretly adore—in my dorm after midnight in my pajamas after all. How smooth.
"I saw you watching me today. I saw you watching me yesterday too." His smile grows wider.
"So?" I blurted out defensively. Angrily. "Everybody watches you. You're a pro-league star. You can't go anywhere without hearing the name 'Aster Phoenix.'"
"Nobody watches me the way you watch me." He eyes me meaningfully.
I bristle inside.
He's doing it again: subtly trying to get past your defenses with a keen observation and a charming expression.
"Well, I don't know what to tell you." I turn my gaze away. "Don't you have anything better to do than watch me? Aren't you supposed to be watching your cards?"
"The icy exterior again?" he scoffs. "Come on. Can't you act your age?"
Shocked, my gaze darts back to him.
Did someone younger than me just criticize how I…'act?'"
My eyes narrow. "I am acting my age."
"Good. Because I didn't come here for kiddy stuff."
All of a sudden, his lips are on mine and my hands are in that soft, soft hair.
However, inside, I knew exactly what I was doing. Too well.
When he broke away, I was instantly mortified. I had never expected that I would react like…that. Dazed, I stared at the satisfied grin that lit up my late night visitor's face.
"My suspicion was correct. You like me." This rather matter-of-fact statement wasn't delivered tauntingly. It was simply a very blunt and a very correct guess.
I wouldn't deny it. Still, I would not give myself away either.
"It was an unconscious reaction. My lips responded of their own will. What of it?" I was losing ground fast.
The scintillating silver-haired duelist cocked his head to the side. He knew better. "Sure. Sure."
Before I could add anymore to the steaming soup that was our conversation, Aster was already stepping back through the window.
"When you're ready to admit it, you know where to find me."
The window shut cleanly behind his fleeting form.
Speechless, I just stood there. Stupidly.
Did that…really happen?
My lips were tingling. This symptom was proof enough. I was disturbed by the subtle feeling that they yearned to meet his again. A wave of loneliness swept over me then, and that almost never happens. Somehow, the dorm room now felt hollow and empty. Artificial. Like me.
It took me about ten minutes to physically get into bed and another two to gather my thoughts together enough to sweep the covers over me even though I wasn't at all cold. No. I was hot.
Uselessly, out of habit, I checked the clock again. It was 1:22 A.M.
"'When you're ready to admit it, you know where to find me.'"
Those words haunted me. In the next few days, I took care to avoid my usual hangouts and to steer clear of anyone dressed in a suit.
And, still he found me.
It was a losing battle. Ever since that fateful night, it was as if a spark had been ignited--a spark that was growing stronger every time I woke up.
Worse, my peers were beginning to notice. In fact, one of my more annoying acquaintances went as far to place his hand on my forehead because I appeared "feverish." Near growling, I knocked his appendage away and stomped off.
As I marched through the corridor, a sudden thought came to me.
If he had placed a hand on your forehead, would you have shoved him away?
After another three hours of sleep, I got dressed with a certain vehemence well before the sun came up. What was the point?
Indeed, a peculiar sensation was starting to close in on me. This sensation was one of…defeat.
So, at around an hour before sunset, I approached the beautifully handsome pro-duelist. I didn't care that people were watching. I didn't care about my reputation either.
He turned. I smiled. He eyed me politely.
"What a pleasant surprise to find you here. Is there something you want?"
I purposefully dropped my tone low. "Yeah. You can give it to me later tonight."
We were attracting stares. Usually, any self-respecting student would know that finding the two of us together was as rare as finding a comet in the night sky, but, this wasn't about them, was it?
Aster raised his eyebrow. "What about right now?"
My mouth dropped open in shock—an uncharacteristic pose for my mouth to be in. "You mean right…here?"
"Too soon." Aster's eyes passed over the thickening crowd.
In one instant, the tension exploded.
"There's going to be a duel!" a loud triumphant voice proclaimed.
A girl broke in. "What? Let me see!"
Aster rolled his startling blue eyes. "We'll have to postpone this. You don't mind, do you?" He was trying his best to remain cool and casual in front of the
"That's besides the point," I mumbled in reply.
It was right then and there I learned something about Aster Phoenix: he kept his private life private with a capital P.
However, under the penetrating moonlight, it was quite worth the wait when I had him all to myself. The place doesn't matter. The time doesn't matter. All I remember is lots of…contact.
Now, the two of us had taken in seeking out and remaining in each other's presence—no matter if there were others present or not.
I know I'm crazy. I know it's nonsensical. But, I'm officially head over heels. I can't bring myself to recognize the 'L' word yet.
Strange how whenever I left his presence that my skin and lips felt as if they had been seared in white heat. It was as if his presence—his very touch--left a brand on my skin. Immediately, I knew why.
No longer did I try to hide my newfound affection. I no longer cared who knew period. All I personally knew was this:
Since I am bound to the Phoenix, I am destined to burn in its flame.