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Midori Hibiki & Donte
She was in the middle of greeting Haruko's grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Furukawa, bored out of her mind by their glacial elderly conversational pace but smiling politely when she heard a scream coming from outside. She politely excused herself, cALMLY WALK- WHAT THE FUCK.

She had said it out loud without realizing it and cringed as Haruko's grandparents gasped. She turned, forced a smile and told them "sorry! Emergency!" before slamming the door closed and running over while fumbling to get her PDA out of her pocket and contact the campus' emergency services.

She ignored Helena and the ensuing realization that this was her doing and began assessing Donte. He was still conscious, which was a good sign, though his face was twisted in agony. She batted away his hands, which were clutching at his wound and began applying pressure, which elicited a pained groan. She probably should have warned him it would hurt. He grabbed her wrists with his own, which were soaked in blood, but he didn't push them away, knowing better.

She looked up, looking Helena dead in the eye with a withering stare. Donte was an asshole, sure, but this? This was beyond the pale. "Helena Ries."

"W-wait" Donte spoke up, coughing between pained breaths. "This one's... on me."

She gave him an disbelieving look. Donte's a lot of things, and one of those things is a fucking liar. She's already punished him when he didn't deserve it a couple of times before, only finding out the truth later on from someone else's mouth, but every conversation with him about it ends up in the same aggravating four words.

"I ain't no snitch."

It doesn't matter if the true culprits were already punished, or if he got into a fight with them, the boy is incorrigible. She doesn't believe for one second Helena's not at fault here, though. She looked back at her, the same stern gaze locked onto hers.

"You need to promise me that you will come to me or another teacher when you want to duel someone. Have I made myself clear?"

Medics arrive shortly thereafter, putting Donte on a stretcher and loading him into a van. Donte's father arrives just in time to witness the scene and chase after it as it drives towards the academy.

@Darkmoon Angel

Miles
A few nights ago...

The pillar of light was truly awe-inspiring up close. It pierced the heavens with a ray made of spirits - duel spirits, he now knows, which disappeared into the aether behind a black screen of cloud cover. Perhaps more bizarre however, was the man behind it.

He looked back over at the man wearing a black cloak. His only distinguishable features were his stubbled chin and millennium eye, glinting from within the shadows cast over the man's face by his cloak. He was suspicious as hell, but the eye was no fake. His own useless duel spirit could tell him that much, at least. "Why me? Because I'm here at a convenient time?"

The main chuckled and lifted a finger to point at his millennium eye. "Because I can relate to you."

His face fell as he realized the man knew exactly why he was interested in such a dubious offer. Then, he got mad. "Stay out of my head, asshole."

"Sorry, force of habit."

He grit his teeth. This might be a bridge he couldn't afford to burn, or it might be the biggest, most obvious scam of his life. He sighed. "Whatever. Lemme know when you achieve world domination, I'll send you a greeting card to congratulate you." He turned to leave, though as he walked away, the man called out one more time.

"If you reconsider, I'll be camping out by the base of the volcano. Just come find me there."

"..."
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Episode 4: A Deal With the Devil


As he arrived at the base of the volcano at night, he gently put down the sack he was carrying. He wasn't sure what he was expecting, but it sure as hell wasn't this.

Miles knocked on the side of the suspicious windowless cargo van the man had self-evidently, by some miracle, driven through the forest. He would assume he had just levitated the thing over the treetops somehow if it weren't for the tire tracks. They were faded and hard to notice by now, especially in the dark, but the ones sheltered beneath the van were more apparent. He walked over and knocked on the side of the van loudly. There was some loud shuffling, followed by a bang, before finally, the driver's door opened on the opposite side. He walked around and, just like the van's exterior, the man was a bit of a disappointment. He made the decision to come here after guilt ate away at him from multiple angles, after days of sleepless nights and his duel spirit getting so much more annoying than usual, only to see that the mysterious cloaked figure with a millennium eye was... just some bum. The man winced at Miles' flashlight, yawning tiredly, a dark circle under his... eye. He reached into his pocket and pulled out an eyepatch, putting it over the millennium eye. "I've been practicing. I can't explain why, since I can see right through it, but the eyepatch helps remind me not to pry."

God, he was making a mistake.

"So why'd you come knocking at the break of midnight? I can barely get enough sleep with all the duel spirits harassing me as it is."

"I held up my end of the deal. You need to hold up yours."

"Your end of the...?" He noticed Miles gesturing to the sack he had left on the ground and watched as the man looked back at him, confusion on his face at first, followed by full-blown panic. "Jesus Christ, kid, this isn't what I fucking meant!" The man ran over to the sack.

Miles knit his brows. The man had definitely used his eye again, and he seemed like he was worming his way out of their deal. He had brought his backpack loaded up with stuff. His actual luggage would attract too much suspicion, but he was ready to never return. He needed this to work.

The man peaked into the sack. Sure enough, some red head girl was passed out inside it and despite seeing it in Miles' memories he grimaced. He was hoping beyond hope that that idiot didn't just kidnap some random girl because- because of him, but he was lying to himself by not looking into the bag with his eye to begin with. He stood back up, turning to stare at the boy. "What in the fuck!?"

"What do you mean, what in the fuck!? You're the one who asked me to do it! That was the deal!”

“No, no, no. That wasn’t the damn deal.”

Miles took a steadying breath before he lost his shit completely. “I bring you a girl, you let me use the eye to make a wish! That was what you said!"

"No, you fucking idiot! I said that I needed your help to find one of the girls on this island, not just any girl! What the fuck did you think was going to happen to her!?"

"I don’t know!" Pinpricks of moisture were assaulting his eyes already, because yeah, he was a fucking idiot. "I didn’t think about it, okay!? A human sacrifice! Some demon summoning ritual! Outright cannibalism! Maybe something worse! Is that what you want me to say!? I didn't want to bring her! I didn’t want to bring anyone, but you’re the fucking mind reader! You knew I’d give myself up, but that wasn’t good enough! So yeah, I didn’t think about it! I couldn't or else I knew I wouldn't go through with it! How was I supposed to know you were after someone specific!?"

"You were supposed to come talk to me first, like I told you to!"

"You didn’t tell me to do that!" He really didn't. "What was I supposed to think when some creep in a cloak who wouldn’t even show me his face offered me demon magic!”

"It’s a Millennium Eye! You’re in a duel academy for fuck’s sake! You should recognize it!”

"Oh, I’m sorry! I didn’t realize the pharaoh’s brand of fucking shadow magic was supposed to make me trust someone I took for a fucking cultist as they hung around a literal pillar of tortured souls!”

"God, this is so fucked. What did you even do to her!?"

"Can’t you read my mind?”

“I’m asking you.”

He couldn't keep the moisture in his eyes from spilling over. He hated it, because he was still willing to go through with it. He was feeling guilty because he messed up, not because he felt bad about his actions. It was disgusting. "She's fine.” He said it a second time, “she’s fine. I stole sedatives from the school nurse. I gave her more than recommended, but I made sure it wasn't a dangerous amount."

The man pinched the bridge of his nose, fighting off an oncoming headache. "Ugh…"

"Why are you even looking for a teenage girl!?"

"BECAUSE! Because. I came to this island to talk to her. I messed up something of hers, and I wanted to make sure I didn't make things worse for her... and I need my van to do this, but as you might have noticed, I'm not supposed to be here. I had to bribe someone to get the van on the island to begin with, and I was only supposed to be here to tour the place for one day. I'm already a breach of security, and I've been flying under the radar, but people will probably begin to take notice after a fucking child abduction!” His words were laced with venom, and they stung just as much. It was deserved, honestly.

"..." He fell to his knees as if stabbed, the weight of his choices gradually settling onto his shoulders like a pile of bricks. The weight he had decided to willingly ignore. His duel spirit loomed over him, staring down at him with neither a smile nor frown. "FUCK YOU!" He stood back up to disperse the mirage, swiping through it as if to kill it. It was partially her fault for guilt-tripping him like this. Well, no. He hated the thing, but he was just looking for something to blame. He really fucked up this time. "What… what do I do?"

"What the fuck do you think? Take her back before anybody notices, and if you succeed, come back, because we're having a long conversation about this."

He took a deep breath, wiping his face clear. He picked up the sack, hoisting the drawstring over his shoulder carefully. Maybe he could take her back and pretend this never happened. Maybe no one, not even Roché, would notice.

Chris
"Roché and Miles are missing!"

Prof. Sartyr and damn near every student in Ra Yellow was woken up by Chris' yelling. It wasn't his fault, strictly speaking, but Professor Sartyr could sleep through a hurricane, and he needed to wake the man up. He was the only Ra Yellow student up and lounging in the Ra Yellow lobby at such a late hour, and while he didn't think much of his two friends...

...and while he didn't think much of his friend Roché and that Miles guy not showing up by the curfew - few students actually abided by it - he decided to call it in once it hit midnight. They've been gone all day, the school was warning them about mysterious figures spotted in the forest on the daily, and it did not take that long to find a good place to conduct a quality shag. He didn't want to narc on them, but he was getting tired and figured it was his moral obligation to say something before he went to sleep.

Professor Sartyr tiredly nodded as Chris repeated himself, called campus security to inform them of the situation, then went back to bed, simply thinking the students were up to adolescent mischief outside of his control.

The white hair brothers were still up. Although it was typical for Jon to be up this late, Kaison even stayed up to pay attention to his riveting tale of the star crossed Ra Yellow lovers who proceeded to stumble on a tree branch and land face-first in a cultist's demon summoning ritual. Chris sent them one last update before heading to bed.

Kaison
"We should go looking for them."

@Crimson Flame

All other Slifer Reds
The walls of the Slifer Red dorm are too damn thin.

Caleb
Damn. Jon's story was wild. He had to send it to Alexis.

Hmm. For some reason she wants to go looking for them. He texted her back, reminding her that that wasn't a very smart thing to do in this instance. They had campus security for exactly these situations, and arguing 'we should go looking for them' was pretty dumb, and could easily make a bad situation worse.

...

That girl and her hunches.

Caleb and Lexa discreetly left their respective dorms. That being said, they didn't necessarily go unnoticed.

@Darkmoon Angel@Eviledd1984@Goose@King Cosmos@Psyker Landshark@Scarifar
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The next morning, Helena wasn’t doing much of anything. She barely had any sleep, her thoughts still clouded by what had happened last night. The duel ended in the result Donte wanted, but the state he was in after… Helena couldn’t stop thinking about the blood. Was he even going to be ok? Or did she actually end up killing him? She couldn’t get the thought out of her head, and with how quickly news spread around the academy, everyone would know to avoid her like the plague. So much for making friends.

She sat quietly at her desk, fumbling through some of the cards in her deck. Chosen didn’t say anything, what could he say? You’re not a murderer, you’re just… No… Look on the brightside, maybe Donte’s dad will lighten up? Maybe… He shook his head. Nothing he could think of would cheer up his partner. Maybe, he could at least get her to move around, get her thoughts on something else?

“Hey… Um… Why don’t you take a break from your edits and uh… Get some fresh air?” He suggested. Helena sat in thought and put her cards up. ”Fine… But I’m not leaving the dorm area…” She said as she quietly got up and left the dorm room, if rumor did spread, than she didn’t want to deal with everyone at the academy unless she had to.
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Leo Wilde – Slifer Red


His roommate was in the infirmary.

Leo still didn’t know the guy all that well; they barely spoke to each other, even though they shared a room, so Leo couldn’t even say he felt particularly concerned about Donte’s condition beyond the level of basic human compassion. They weren’t friends, but there was no bad blood there either. The last he’d heard the guy was doing okay, but there was no word on when he’d be coming back and no one had bothered to explain what had even happened to him.

All anyone knew was that that Helena girl was involved somehow.

Normally, Leo wouldn’t want to get involved. It was none of his business and no harm… no lasting harm had been done, so he wasn’t going to harass the girl for now reason. But, well, he was curious what had happened. Donte was a big guy and while it wasn’t like Helena couldn’t have hurt him somehow he doubted that was what went down; especially since the teachers weren’t doing anything to punish her for hospitalising another student.

Whatever the situation or the reason, it probably wasn’t the case that Helena had straight out attacked Donte. So something else had happened instead, something the teachers weren’t telling them and also weren’t punishing Helena for.

And, you know, he’d just come around to the idea that weird, magic duel monster spirits existed…

Were they dangerous?

“Hey, er, Helena?” It wasn’t often that Leo got sheepish around people; even girls. But then, it also wasn’t often that he found himself approaching them out of the blue and asking awkward personal questions of people he barely knew. Well, he’d done it twice in as many days now, but still. “This might sound weird but, er… do you… see things? Like, I don’t know, do you ever talk to your cards?”

@Darkmoon Angel
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Helena was just resting by the stairs of the door when she was approached by someone. She was caught off guard for a moment before realizing it was another Slifer Red. Leo was it? Was he coming to bug her about the incident with Donte? From the way he was acting it seemed like it, until he actually asked his question.

“This might sound weird but, er… do you… see things? Like, I don’t know, do you ever talk to your cards?”


“Um… What?” Chosen glanced at him. “And what if she does?” He said standing in front of Leo. After a moment, Chosen tilted his head in confusion before realization hit him. “Why would he ask that? He clearly can’t see me…” he mumbled. Helena thought for a moment, maybe he didn’t hear what happened? Or maybe he doesn’t know she was involved. But the fact that he was asking her about duel spirits was curious, especially since it seemed like he couldn’t.

”Well… I can… But… Why do you even want to know? I’m… Not the best person to ask that… Especially right now.” She said in an honest, quiet tone.

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Valerie Durand


"Roché and Miles are missing!"

Well, that explained some things. Like why her roommate wasn't back even at this late hour. Valerie sat at her desk, finishing up the last of the day's homework as she mused to herself. Eh, Roche was probably fine. Really, she didn't take the girl for the sexually active type, and Miles wasn't exactly in her own strike zone, but Roche was weird enough that being into really cunty guys wasn't exactly out of the question for her.

"You should probably be a responsible roommate and go look for her, you know." Ceruli cut in, staring out the window as he sat in the spare chair that Roche wasn't using at the moment.

"I really, really don't want to walk in on my roommate screwing someone in the middle of the woods. Plus, Sartyr's probably called campus security by now." Valerie replied instantly, packing her schoolwork up.

"And the poor girl will face disciplinary action should security retrieve her before you manage to. Do recall that you're supposed to be living with her. It would do you good to get on her better side."

"The first thing she did when we met was come at me with a utility lighter." Valerie said flatly, before sighing as her Duel Spirit continued to stare her down. A few moments later, she gave in. "Fine, fine. If I walk in on them cuddling, I'm coming straight back." A pause. "...She's been gone for hours. Would've been back by now if it's what they were actually up to."

With that settled, Valerie stood up, slipped her Duel Disk on, and left her room out the window. No sense leaving after curfew through the front door. Time to go find her erstwhile roommate.
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Mina & Miles

Mina woke up from all the yelling “Shut the fuck up!” She yelled, now finding it hard to go back to sleep. After giving up, she quickly got out of bed and went to find out what was going on. Getting her Ra Yellow uniform on, she headed out towards the lobby. Noticing a few people that were meandering around before heading back to their dorm room. “Wonder what’s going on?” She said, shaking her head. She decided to head outside of the dorm room for a breath of fresh air, curfew be damned. She looked up at the night sky, feeling a strange sense of bliss looking at the stars. From the corner of her eye she noticed something strange, at first she thought it was an animal. But it didn't seem like any animal she had seen before.

“What is that?” She muttered to herself. Craning her head to the side trying to get a better look at whatever it was. But she couldn’t see it very clearly, since it was obscured by the brush and treeline.

“...Damn.” Miles muttered to himself. Why was everyone in Ra Yellow awake at this hour? Unless they figured out he and Roché were missing. It was a pretty unreasonable logical leap, but Miles was stressed and paranoid, and he knew he’d be expelled immediately if people found what he did to Roché. Still, he didn’t like the idea of inadvertently holding her hostage, so he sat her down, taking her out from the sack and leaning her against a tree, then began rustling a nearby bush to get the attention of one of the Ra Yellow students nearby. He’d have to spend the night outside and pretend to wake up in the middle of the woods. That should roughly match what Roché would experience, he thought.

As Mina approached carefully, she made out Roché’s bright red hair first, then the rest of her unconscious form, sitting against a tree, as a separate shadowy figure darted away.

Mina once again tried to make out what the figure was, but the treeline was obscuring her vision. She crouched down beside the unconscious girl with red hair, recognizing her as another Ra Yellow student.

She looked back towards the retreating figure - someone wearing a cloak, she realized, and couldn’t help but be curious as to what the hell was going on. By all appearances, someone had kidnapped Roché for some nefarious purpose and was just dropping her back off now. She didn’t look hurt, but she had no way of knowing that for sure, and no time to find out. “Why the hell did I get out of bed…” She pinched the bridge of her nose with her hand before deciding to not waste any more time.

She ran after the shadowy figure, tailing them. “Hey, stop!” She yelled out, hoping that the person would stop. However, it only seemed to make them run faster. Still, Mina was evidently more athletic than the cloaked figure, because after running and running, Mina only gained on them over time. As the futility of the chase became apparent, they continued a bit until they came upon one of the many small clearings in the forest and the cloaked figure whipped around, readying their duel disk.

Miles had decided that his only hope of getting this girl off his tail was to duel her off. Sure, she didn’t have to agree to a duel in this situation, but what kind of barbarian wouldn’t? If she really wanted to act uncivilized, then he was confident his duel spirit could fight her off anyway. He recognized the girl - Mina, if he remembered correctly, but he didn’t know much about her personality or deck. All he knew about her was that she had a two-faced dog as her duel spirit, and that it wasn’t nearly as strong as his own duel spirit. He tried to recall the name of the duel spirit - it was something weird that didn’t fit it visually, like ghost retainer, or maybe revenant retainer. Some kind of zombie deck maybe? Whatever, it didn’t matter. He’d just have to beat her. He didn’t say anything, for fear she would recognize his voice, but he kept the cloak’s hood low over his face, and lifted his duel disk - his challenge was obvious.

Mina stopped when she noticed the figure pulling out a duel disk. “Fuckin hell, you wanna duel?” She was not sure dueling this person was the most logical idea. She could try to force the hood off of them, but she had an uncanny suspicion that they were stronger than they looked. She couldn’t explain the feeling, but then again, she couldn’t explain why she could communicate with Vampire Retainer. “I guess I’ve got no choice then.” She readied her duel disk, preparing to duel the figure.

Mina vs. Miles


Mina looked at her cards, trying to figure out what to put down on the field. After a few moments of thinking, she put a couple of cards face-down, then activated Vampire’s Domain. Though, lacking good options for it, she didn’t use its effect just yet. “Okay. I end my turn.”

As Miles drew for his turn, he frowned. Mina didn’t seem to have much of a hand to speak of, but unfortunately for Miles, neither did he. In fact, the only thing he had that could stop her from slapping down 8000 damage worth of attack and winning instantly was - “I activate Child’s Play and end my turn.” Only a second later did he realize there was a chance Mina would recognize his voice, but luckily for him, she didn’t seem to.

Mina looked annoyed as the figure put down Child’s Play - a promise for continual healing and a threat of much worse. It would be a pain in her ass if she didn’t deal with it ASAP. She placed her topdecked Vampire Familiar onto the field, then paid 500 LP for Vampire’s Domain to tribute summon Vampire Grimson. She then activated Vampire Takeover so she could activate Vampire Kingdom and special summon back her Vampire Familiar. Its effect activated, letting her search her deck for another Vampire, ensuring she’d have more she could do next turn. “Now we’re talkin’.” She grinned, placing Vampire Takeover into the graveyard. “Now, get ready for a pounding. Vampire Grimson, Vampire Familiar, attack this freak.” Her monsters swarmed forth, both gaining attack from Vampire Kingdom and taking 3500 LP off of the cloaked figure. “And thanks to my Vampire’s Domain, I gain just as many. Thanks for the life points asshole.” She chuckled. “I end my turn.”

Vampire Grimson - 2000/1400
Vampire Familiar - 500/0

Miles’ LP: 8000 > 8300 > 8600 > 8900 > 7900 > 5400
Mina’s LP: 8000 > 9000 > 11500

It was Miles’ turn again, and, at last, he drew what he needed. “I activate Gingerbread House.”

“Ha! I’ll negate it with Vampire Domination.”

Mina had a smug look on her face as she countered the figure’s spell, but this expression soon changed to anger as the figure put down another Gingerbread House.

“Fuckin bastard.” She thought out loud, biting her lower lip.

“Next, I activate Valhalla, Hall of the Fallen, and use its effect to special summon. Her.” There was a slight pause as he set down the duel spirit that had been haunting him since he’d lost the real one.

Guardian Angel Joan - 2800/2000

“I’ll equip her with United we Stand, and use her to attack your Vampire Familiar.” The angel’s attack and defense rose by 800, and for a moment, she looked back at Miles, her expression just as neutral and impassive as it’s always been. He hated it. The silent judgment. The patient expectation of more, even when he tried to push her away. The undeserved understanding and attempts to comfort him. It was coddling him, and she had no right. She wasn’t her. Ever since he’d had that talk with Mina, her stare seemed so much colder. Ever since he’d taken the sedatives from the nurse’s office, she - it seemed so much more persistent, yet it also refused to say a word. He’d even seen Mina’s monstrous dog speak, so why wouldn’t it? It was bullshit. She was bullshit.

Guardian Angel Joan - 3600/2800

Guardian Angel flew forward and, with a flourish, blasted Vampire Familiar with a ray of light from her palm like something out of Wyvern Orb Ζ. Mina let out a grunt, paying 1000 LP to keep it alive with Vampire Grimson’s effect. If nothing else, it prevented him from recovering LP with the angel.

“I end my turn.”

MIna’s drew, and as her standby phase rolled around, he activated Gingerbread House. Mina let out another annoyed grunt as she lost 1000 more LP keeping Vampire Grimson alive.

Mina’s LP: 11500 > 8700 > 7700 > 6700

At least it was buffed up for her troubles. Brushing off the setback, she activated Vampire Domain, paying 500 life points and tributing Vampire Familiar to summon Vampire Sorcerer and Shadow Vampire onto the field. Using Shadow Vampire’s effect, she special summons Vampire Red Baron from her deck. Then, using Vampire Familiar’s effect, she sends Vampire Lord from her hand to the graveyard to special summon the Familiar, and uses Vampire Red Baron to trade it for the cloaked figure’s buffed up Guardian Angel Joan.

“Eat this.” She had her Vampires Sorcerer destroy the familiar before having the rest attack the figure directly, feeling elated as she claimed victory. Although it was just overkill caused by her messed up duel disk, the final blow, oddly, didn’t come. Guardian Angel Joan faded out before the other holograms as the duel came to a close.

Miles’ LP: 5400 > 5700 > 6000 > 6300 > 6600 > 4100 > 1200 > -1900
Mina’s LP: 6700 > 9200 > 12100 > 15200

Didn’t quite beat her record from her tag duel, and, proportionately, she had the obstinate Angel to blame for that, which was now hovering over the cloaked figure as he fell to his knees.

A duel spirit.

The cloaked figure was covering their face with their hands, and, unbidden, the angel reached out and pulled the hood back, revealing Miles, his glasses askew, trying to keep himself from breaking down. The jig was pretty much up, and he’d go to jail with some modicum of dignity, at least.

Mina watched in confusion as the angel leaned down next to Miles, reaching out to wipe away a particularly insistent tear when he flinched back and batted her hand away. As usual, he phased right through her, her hand dispersing like smoke. He choked out a curse against the angel, almost too quiet for Mina to hear. “Fuck off.”

She was utterly surprised that Miles was the one underneath the hood. She didn’t know where to start, so she just voiced her thoughts out loud. “What the fuck is going on?”

Despite his better judgment, Miles scoffed, though he meant it more at himself than at Mina. “I messed up.” He shook his head. He did exactly what he had set out to do, and were he not such a damned idiot, he would have gone through with it. Had it actually been called for, he would have sacrificed Roché in a heartbeat. No, he was lying by omission just now, wasn’t he? He almost convinced himself he wasn’t. No, what he messed up was getting Roché back without anyone noticing. He took a deep shuddering breath. He couldn’t just fight off Mina after losing a duel. Duel spirits didn’t work like that. At least, he could tell that his would refuse to work like that. He supposes Mina was better than campus security. At least she, he would be able to confess his sins to.

“...And I don’t feel bad about it.”

“What do you mean you messed up? What were you gonna do to Roche?”

Miles answered her question with another question. “Have you ever wanted something so desperately that you’d do anything for it? Sell your soul, kill a person, doom the world - anything?”

There was something she did want, but she was able to do it with the help of the people around her. Their support is what helped her gain the resolve to complete her dream. “My goals don’t require that.”

Miles nodded. “Mine might not either, but I didn’t know that. I thought that they did. I was jumping to conclusions… I’m getting ahead of myself. How much do you know about the millennium items?”

“I know the King of Games had one, and dueled others with them.”

Miles nodded. “I met a man with the millennium eye. He wore this cloak-” He took the black cloak off, folding it in his hands. “-this cloak, so I couldn’t get a good look at him. I met him on the night the weird geyser of duel spirits appeared, hanging around the pillar, tenting his fingers like the most stereotypical villain to ever exist. The creep saw me, and must’ve looked through my memories or something, because he said he could relate to me.” He shook his head. “At the time, I thought he was just being manipulative, but now I think he was being sincere. Anyway, he made me an offer - he’d give me the millennium eye, a millennium item with the ability to grant wishes, in exchange for bringing a girl to him. I asked Guardian Angel Joan, and she confirmed the man’s eye was real. How he got his hands on it, I’d still like to know.”

He thought back to Roché and shuddered. “If I’m being honest and optimistic, I expected him to take Roché as some sort of human sacrifice. When I met up with him, though, he seemed more like a hobo than some evil cultist. When he saw Roché, he flipped out on me. Kidnapping Roché wasn’t what he wanted. He said he was looking for a specific girl, and that he was just trying to ‘talk’ to her, because he has a personal history with her or something.” He grimaced. “What a grown man has to do with a teenage girl, I don’t know. Maybe he’s just an estranged dad or whatever. Either way, he’s not supposed to be on this island, so he can’t be seen looking for her on his own.”

An awkward silence fell as Mina processed what he’d done and why. Miles continued, “I’m still not sure I trust him, or the millennium eye itself, but every time I look at my duel spirit…” He paused, letting the sentence hang, unsure of how to continue it.

Mina filled the ensuing silence. “Why is your guardian spirit that angel anyway?” She asked. She was reminded of her own spirit who reminded her of her childhood pet.

Miles sighed bitterly. “I still haven’t thanked you for opening my eyes about that.” He looked at the angel floating placidly beside him. “I’ll do it now. Thank you, for exposing… for making me face reality when I denied it for so long.”

He looked back at Mina. “Guardian Angel Joan is a retrained version of St. Joan, a non-effect fusion monster based off of Joan of Arc.” He paused, remembering how he would pointlessly fixate on the card before his duel spirit appeared. “The real Joan of Arc is said to have had dark brown hair. She wasn’t a red head. Not like my mom.”

He stopped, shutting his eyes tightly. It was ancient history. This wasn’t the first time he’s talked about it with someone, but he was emotionally charged right now, and it took more effort than normal to keep himself together. He opened them again, blinking away the involuntary moisture. “Her first name was Joan, and in fact, the card and my mom look quite similar. This thing-” he gestured to the angel beside him “-showed up about a week after she died.” He let out another long-suffering sigh. “I was just a stupid kid, then, and for a long time, I got it in my head that she was… the real deal.”

He reached out, running his hand through the duel spirit as it faded into smoke entirely.

“I think I always kind of knew, but it was way easier to just deny it. It’s kind of pathetic it took me a decade and meeting your freaky dog to wake up and smell the roses. We - me and my dad - even paid Industrial Illusions a visit. Pure coincidence, they said. The hair was just an artistic liberty. Still, I ended up making a deck around her. Isn’t that hilarious?” Despite the light-hearted question, his tone was self-deprecating. “So yeah, I couldn’t forget about her. I couldn’t move on, and when that weirdo offered me a deal… Once I decided I believed him, I made my choice. I bet it all. I bet wrong, and it wasn’t even that guy’s fault.”

He sighed yet again before getting to his feet, stuffing the cloak into his bag. “I’m rambling. I just wanted to get all that off my chest before… before we go back.”

Mina looked in awe as Miles was spilling his guts out about his mom. Even though she hated her parents in stark contrast, she felt sympathy for the boy wanting to see his mother again.

“Look I understand that you wanna see your mom again, but murdering someone is not the way to go about it. Think about what your mom would think if she found out you were a murderer.”

Miles frowned, then, quietly, forlornly, answered, “I’d be happy she’d be able to think at all, again.”

Mina grimaced, then shook her head. “Who is this guy with the eye anyway?” The only person she knew with the Millennium Eye was Pegasus. And he didn’t have that thing for a long time.

“I’ve met him twice, and didn’t ask either time. The first time, he didn’t seem like he’d answer, and the second time, he was too busy yelling at me.”

“Can you take me to him?” She wanted to ask this mystery man some questions.

Miles hesitantly nodded. “I could, but I think we, or you, should go another day. Roché was left behind back there, and once we bring her back to Ra Yellow, I think it’ll be hard to go back out unnoticed.” He also just didn’t want to bother the man with another issue so soon after this shitshow.

“Yeah that sounds like a good idea.” The thought of forgetting about Roche made her want to smack herself. They began the walk back to Roché, carrying her back, claiming they had simply found her passed out in the woods. When asked why Miles was also missing, he said he liked the way tree bark felt against his face in the moonlight and went to bed, exhausted. For her part, Mina kept his secret. She’d decide what to do when she met the man Miles had mentioned.
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Episode 5: Whodunnit?

As it does every year, the King of Games' deck went on tour. As usual, it made one of its pit stops at the Duel Academy, coinciding with one of the students' day off.

It was Chris' idea to throw a party on the same day to celebrate Roché's safe return. She couldn't remember how she ended up passed out in the woods, but she wasn't about to say no to a party, and since it was a day off, Professor Sartyr signed off on it, provided it ended by curfew and that the students would clean up afterwards. Several Ra Yellow students didn't participate, going to see the famous deck belonging to the King of Games, or just off somewhere else to get some peace and quiet. Rin in particular was buzzing about the King of Games' deck exhibit the whole morning to anyone that would listen.

The party continued through sundown, and Miles and Mina agreed to using the cover of night to slip away, meeting up with the man with the millennium eye.

5A: Farewell, Ra Yellow.

The party was in full swing - music blaring, video games up on the lounge's TVs, and several students dueling in and around the dorms. Some students from other dorms even came by to participate. By all accounts it was a huge success up until someone yelled out that there was a fire. The students were evacuated, and when the fire extinguisher was finally retrieved, it ended up being too little, too late.

Professor Sartyr stood outside the dorm, looking back at the raging pyre with a mixture of sadness and mounting dread at the possibility that he had missed someone in the evacuations. He did a headcount on his students and sent a message to all others who weren't there - After some agonizing waiting and several repeated messages, they each responded back. No one was hurt.

However, Ra Yellow was gone.

After contacting campus administration, the Ra Yellow students were all led to Obelisk Blue for shelter overnight.

5B: Not This Shit Again

On the same night the Ra Yellow Dorms went down in flames, the deck belonging to the King of Games went missing. The exhibit had closed for the day, but someone evidently snuck in and took the deck for themselves. In the chaos of the party and its abrupt end, many students were unaccounted for for long periods of time, and in the eyes of the staff, very few students have a proper alibi. The few that do, are mostly because of the saturation of the school faculty in the Obelisk Blue Dorms.

5C: Deal With a Homeless Person

Although Miles had already described the man as hobo-like, it was still jarring to see him eating instant noodles by a small campfire. He was wearing the same black eyepatch from yesterday, which hid the millennium eye surprisingly well. The man’s lower face was covered in a thin layer of stubble, and his hair - a striking shade of hot pink, was an unkempt mess.

Although he was initially concerned by Mina’s presence and the consequences thereof, he relaxed after Miles introduced her and explained the events of last night. Before they could discuss any more, however, the man launched into lecturing Miles about the dangers of using the ends to justify the means, and how he’d regret it. He went on for quite a while before offhandedly mentioning that the girl he was looking for was an Obelisk Blue student named Alexis.



The day after, a school assembly was called to go over the two incidents from the night prior.

Chancellor Sheppard started out with reassurances - that the Ra Yellow dorms were being rebuilt, that the thief behind the missing deck would be caught and punished, and that the mysterious figure spotted lurking in the woods would be caught and, if they were responsible for either incident, brought to justice. Ra Yellow students would receive new uniforms for free to replace the ones that went up in flames, and if they left their decks behind, that they would be able to get get a free replacement from the Duel Academy card shop. Other considerations are being left on hold while Duel Academy investigates, and he pledged that the teachers and staff of Duel Academy would support the affected students and get to the bottom of things.

Afterward, Dr. Crowler took the stage, and he immediately accused the Ra Yellow students of being behind the incidents from that night, followed by accusing the Slifer Red students of the same, just because. He then went on to declare that, until the true culprit behind both are found, that the Ra Yellow students would be camping out with the “Slifer Slackers.” Naturally, there weren't enough dorm rooms left in Slifer Red to accommodate all the Ra Yellow students, but Professor Sartyr and Ms. Hibiki came on stage to assure students that it would be a “fun camping experience,” and that they’d already set up tents next to Slifer Red for all of them. Audible groans and angry complaints erupted from many of the Ra Yellow students, though Dr. Crowler silenced them with threats of expulsion until Professor Fontaine intervened. She changed the topic, going on to announce a fundraiser to cover the costs of rebuilding Ra Yellow. Soon, Duel Academy would hold a globally televised dueling event where students would compete in tournaments for the chance to win rare prize cards. They were now taking suggestions for tournament categories - standard duels were already set, but they would hold a vote on what side tournaments to include, such as tag duels, deck swap tournaments, drafted deck tournaments, or whatever else the students could think of.

Chancellor Sheppard returned to the stage to say some encouraging words about “moving towards the future” before the students were sent back to class as usual. Ra Yellow students got an extension on their homework deadlines, at least.

Later that day…

Sina

The Masked Rabbit

Today would be the day that THE MASKED RABBIT can stand by no longer.

Too many have suffered. Too much was lost. Now was the time for action!

A girl clearly wearing a Lunalight White Rabbit Halloween Costume, or perhaps a cosplay, stepped out of Slifer Red dorm 103, in full view of the camping Ra Yellows and a couple of Slifer Reds. She caught the attention of many of them quite quickly.

“Fear not, my fellow - I mean, students of Duel Academy! Of which I am not one of! THE MASKED RABBIT will find the culprit behind the vile misdeeds committed upon you! AWAY!”

She gallivanted off towards the remains of the Ra Yellow dorm, ignoring the baffled stares of the onlookers.

Super Sleuth Sina I mean Masked Rabbit is on the case.

@Darkmoon Angel@Eviledd1984@Goose@King Cosmos@Psyker Landshark
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Leo Wilde – Slifer Red


Okay, so he was right; Helena could see those duel spirit things. She admitted to it a lot more easily than that Ra girl had as well, which made things easy. Maybe this meant he was on the right track with what he was thinking.

But, things were awkward again. The girl clearly didn’t want to speak about this topic, either because of guilt or just because he was a stranger asking personal questions. Maybe someday he could have a conversation with a classmate that didn’t leave him either confused or uncomfortable, but it wasn’t going to be this conversation.

“Well, sorry, but I need to ask you. Because you had that duel with Donte and now he’s in the infirmary and they’re not telling us why.” He let out a sigh. “Look, I don’t know anything about spirits; I’m not sure I even really believe in them, but I gotta ask. Are they dangerous? Did your spirit… do something to Donte?”

@Darkmoon Angel
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Valerie Durand


What a shitshow. She hadn't found Roche at all, and her roommate just randomly showed back up in the dorms with no recollection of where she'd been or what had happened to her. Just great. Mina and Miles had found Roche before Valerie managed to, it seemed. Although judging by Miles's crap excuse, there was something else going on behind the scenes there. Seriously, tree bark against his face in the moonlight? Who the hell thought that passed for an alibi? Besides her entire dorm, apparently, that was.

Speaking of her dorm, it burning down really didn't help her mood. Most of Valerie's stuff was replaceable, and she'd managed to snag her deck with her upon exiting the burning building. But her autographed Chazz Princeton posters were absolutely priceless. Those were a limited-edition online order, damn it! So she wasn't exactly the happiest of campers at the moment. Literally, considering they were stuck sharing tents outside the Slifer dorm grounds now. Really, the past few days had been an absolute god damn mess. So here she was, hanging out with Roche as they huddled around a small fire pit, grilling some sausages.

"Well, I'm glad you're alright, at least." Valerie murmured to her roommate as she slowly rotated their food over the makeshift grill. "Sorry I didn't get to actually meet your dad, by the way. That just...wasn't really a great day for it. Seriously, you don't remember a single thing about what happened with you disappearing?" She paused. "You talk to that Miles kid at all?"
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“Well, sorry, but I need to ask you. Because you had that duel with Donte and now he’s in the infirmary and they’re not telling us why.” He let out a sigh. “Look, I don’t know anything about spirits; I’m not sure I even really believe in them, but I gotta ask. Are they dangerous? Did your spirit… do something to Donte?”


Helena glanced at Leo before thinking of what to say. Her spirit wasn’t the issue, it was her. But how does she explain it? She has the ability to potentially kill people in a duel? She mulled it over before giving a quiet sigh. “No… At least, my spirit doesn’t… I can’t say for all. But it’s not my spirit that does it, it didn’t hurt Donte… I… I did.” She finally said. ”I have… A condition I guess you could call it. I’m somehow able to… Project my cards to physically harm someone. But I can’t control it. Donte wanted a way out of interacting with his father so… We dueled and well… The rest is history… Bloody, horrible history…”

“Helena…” Chosen of the Celtic Guard appeared by her side and patted her shoulder. “It’s not your fault… If anything, Donte wanted you to do that.” He stated. ”… What would’ve happened if I killed him? What then? Nothing about what happened is ok even if he wanted it…” Realizing she was talking to thin air in Leo’s eyes she looked back at him. “Sorry… My spirit always insists on trying to cheer me up…”
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Leo Wilde – Slifer Red


“You… wait, what?”

A condition? One that let Helena project cards physically and that was enough for her too… put someone in the hospital? And this had nothing to do with the duel spirits thing that Leo was already struggling to get his head around? Except, Helena could see spirits as well so maybe it was related to that. “Well, I guess this explains the whole ‘no duelling without supervision’ thing… wait, does that mean that other kid can hurt people too?”

It was strange, watching someone speak to thin air as if they were having a conversation with someone. Leo squinted at the air in front of Helena’s face as if trying to see whatever it was she could see, but there was nothing there no matter how hard he tried. Guess he just didn’t have whatever it was, gift or curse or something else, that he needed to be able to talk to his cards. “Great, so some people can talk to their cards and other people can kill you during a duel and my roommate got put in the hospital and people keep going missing and the Ra dorm burnt down. Man, this sucks; I just came here because I wanted to become a better duellist. Maybe I should have studied harder and gone to a real school.”

Well, he was here now, so if this was something he had to deal with Leo might as well learn as much as he could about it. Hopefully when he became a pro he wouldn’t have to worry about his opponent’s killing him. “You didn’t kill him, so don’t beat yourself up too hard. But, yeah, you should probably listen to the teachers not duel anyone else anytime soon. Although, why are you even duelling people in the first place if this is what happens? Why try to become a duellist?”

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Mina walked with Miles to meet with the mysterious person. She had many questions in her head. Mina looked quite nervous, fiddling with her hands. She should be careful with her questions if this guy has a short temper. When the two stood in front of the homeless looking guy, Mina coughed loudly and spoke up. Although she was not sure how this guy could be the mastermind, he didn’t look very threatening. “How did you get the millennium eye anyway? I thought Kaiba had all of them. How the hell does it work anyway?” Mina’s duelling spirit was floating around behind her.

I sense something behind this man’s eyepatch. He most definitely has the millennium eye. I would be careful speaking to this man Mina.” This made Mina nod her head in agreement.
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