Night was falling in Domino City once again. The end of the day comes and businesses close. Sugoroku Mutou was out in front of his shop, the Kame Game Store, with a whisk broom sweeping the last of the dust into the street. Satisfied that he was done for the night he went inside but before he could lock the door for the night a man in a high school uniform walked up.
"Sorry, the store's closed for the night. If you come by tomorrow-"
The man stepped forward and grabbed Sugoroku by the arm. "I'm not here to buy. I want to speak with Yugi."
Sugoroku eyed the strange man suspiciously. He certainly didn't look like any of Yugi's friends... "You are...?"
"Tell Yugi that Anzu sent me. And give him this," he said as he passed Sugoroku a sealed envelope, who silently closed the door and climbed the stairs to Yugi's room. On his way up he silently opened the envelope and pulled out the picture from inside...
Yugi was working on yet another puzzle when Sugoroku entered his room. Yugi had removed the Millenium Puzzle for the night, and it lay on Yugi's bed. Yugi turned around as he heard his grandpa enter and asked, "Grandpa! What are you doing here?"
"A man just came to the door and asked me to give you this," he said as he passed the now open envelope to Yugi.
It was too late - Yugi sat the picture of Anzu. Someone had taken her arms
That was all it took. Rage filled every thought as gold streaks shot through Yugi's hair. The determination to save his friend was all he needed to bring forth his other self, and he only looked at his grandfather before grabbing his school jacket and the Millenium Puzzle.
"Please, Yugi, don't do anything rash..." his grandfather pleaded.
He turned over the picture on a hunch and saw the words on the back - "Duel Disk." Why would they want me to bring my Duel Disk? If it means I can save Anzu, I'll bring it, he thought to himself as he pulled the contraption out from its storage box under his bed and readied his Duel Monsters deck.
"I'll be back after I've freed Anzu," he said to his grandfather as he strapped on his Duel Disk and walked down the stairs.
"Yugi... be careful..."
Yugi didn't recognize the man that had called him out, but he did recognize the uniform. "You're from Rintama, aren't you?"
"You are perceptive. Hirutani hired me and let me borrow this uniform, and told me to teach you a lesson. You got my picture, did you not?"
"Anzu! Where is she?!"
"If you can beat me at Duel Monsters, I'll bring you to her myself. Agreed?"
It may be my only chance to save Anzu, Yugi thought to himself as he contemplated the man's offer. But who is this man, and why was he hired?
"Agreed. Tell me who you are."
"I am called... the Bondage Master. Now, are you ready?"
Yugi got into position and activated his Duel Disk. "Your mistake was calling me out!"
The Master activated his Duel Disk as well. "Yours was responding to my challenge. 4000 Life Points to start."
Both of them drew their starting hands and as the challenged, Yugi took the first turn. Both my Kuriboh and my Black Magician Girl in my starting hand, Yugi thought to himself. I hope it's enough...
"I set one monster in defense position, and end my turn."
The Master chuckled to himself as he drew his card. "You're just lucky I don't have a monster in my hand. Otherwise, that shrimp you put face down would be dead. Set two cards, and I end my turn.
Yugi eyed the facedown cards his opponent set. If he's not bluffing, then the cards he set must be something that prevents attacks somehow... he thought as he drew the next card from his deck. Talk about useless. I don't want to risk using it unless I absolutely have to, since his cards will only return to his hand... so, here goes!
"You failed to put out a monster to defend yourself, and now you will pay the price! I sacrifice Kuriboh as the tribute, and summon my Black Magician Girl in attack mode!"
The Master cut a sly grin. "I was right, it was a shrimp..."
"But more than enough to summon another monster," Yugi retorted to the Master. He motioned to his Black Magician girl and commanded, "Now go - attack his life points directly!"
The monster jumped forward and pulled back her wand, but before her strike could land, the master called out, "Reveal the concealed card - Shadow Coils!"
Black bands of energy shot forth from the now turned-over card and intercepted the Black Magician Girl mid-strike. Multiple strands intercepted each of her arms and quickly threw them behind her body, twisting around themselves and securing her arms as one solidly behind her back. More coils sprung forth and began to wind tightly about her upper and lower legs. Another band - this one the thickest of them all - constricted itself across her upper arms and chest, pinning her arms to her sides and completely cutting off any chance for the restrained Duel Monster to escape. The force of the coils bursting forth threw her back across to Yugi's side of the field and back to the top of her card. No longer able to keep her balance, she toppled over face-first.
Yugi was stunned, not so much from the revealing of an unheard of card but instead because of its effect on his second-favorite monster. "What did your card do to my Black Magician Girl?" he indignantly shouted across the field.
"Oh, it's very simple. As long as my card is on the field, your monster cannot attack. And with a very interesting graphical effect, might I add."
And I can't switch her to defese mode until my next turn, either, since I tried to attack, Yugi pondered. He's got that advantage, but he'll have to come up with a monster with at least 2000 attack to win. I at least have that.
"My turn ends," Yugi decided. "Do what you will."
The Master smiled as he drew his card. "I know what you're thinking. "Let's switch her to defense mode to protect my life points." No such luck - the other card I set prevents that! Silence Band, go!"
The second card on the Master's field revealed itself and shot a wide white band across the field directly at the Black Magician Girl. She screamed and tried to roll out of the way, but the band struck anyway and wrapped itself around the monster's mouth multiple times, sealing upon itself in the back of her head.
"Without the power of voice, your monster will be unable to switch between Attack and Defense mode. And since you can't attack with her in the first place, she's dead wood to you, Yugi. Now I set one monster in defense and end my turn."
Yugi's only monster was trapped in attack mode, unable to switch, unable to attack. On top of that, his opponent now had a monster in defense. If he thought he could attack my monster and win, he would have sent his monster to attack me, Yugi mused as he drew his card. It can't be that powerful.
"You may have set me back, but you're still on the defensive. But not for long - Celtic Guardian, go!" Yugi threw his card onto the duel disk, summoning his armored warrior to the field. "Attack the face down card!" he commanded.
The Celtic Guardian nodded and rushed past the bound Black Magician Girl. His sword cut through the air as he rushed towards the holographic card on the field and with his strongest blow sliced the card in twain.
The Bondage Master chuckled. "Oops. Your mistake."
The monster inside the card revealed itself. The holograms twisted themselves into two distinct shapes; the first formed itself into a shapely young lass in a square-collared gown, firmly lashed to a tall wooden pole around her ankles and below her breasts with thin leather cords. Head bowed and hands secured behind the pole, she hardly looked the part of the Duel Monster.
The dragon forming behind her was another story.
At the tip of the Celtic Guardian's sword was a dragon easily the size of Kaiba's renowned Blue-Eyes White Dragon. Yugi could see the fire glowing behind it's golden cat-like eyes as it eyed the Celtic Guardian that tried to attack it.
"1000 attack, 2400 defense. Your Celtic Guardian has only 1400 attack, does he not?"
The burly dragon threw down its foot, and Yugi felt the earth shake beneath his feet.
"It's a shame to see a waste of a good monster."
The lass lashed to the pole looked straight up, and Yugi could see a bright blue light flash in her eyes. She shouted as a column of light shot from her body and threw itself into the dragon, who was already inhaling as flames danced around its mouth.
"Dragon and the Maiden... retaliate with Holy Fire."
An earsplitting roar accompanied the jet of flame that burst from the dragon's mouth. The Celtic Guardian put up his arm as a shield to the mighty flame, but it was naught enough to dissapate the rest of the fireball that barrelled for Yugi at breakneck speed. The fireball struck hard and fast, and he was hit with almost the full force of the holographic heat. He screamed as the flames licked at his face and his duel disk ticked off the points that he had lost to the failed attack.
"That puts you at... 3000, does it not?"
The flames had died. The maiden had resumed her former submissive pose, and Yugi didn't need to look at his duel disk to know the truth. His Celtic Guardian, singed but still able to battle, and his Black Magician Girl, head turned over her shoulder as she was unable to do much more than that, both looked at him in shock. That was an ugly trap to lay down!
"As long as the dragon protects the maiden, you are utterly helpless."
Yugi raised his eyebrow in wonder. "But why is the maiden bound?"
"An artistic flourish on my own part."
He did call himself the Bondage Master, after all, Yugi admitted.
"Now, I believe your turn is over," the Master called as he drew his card. And I have just the thing to send you to your grave... Ebikyo Drakmord!"
Yugi took a step back in anticipation of what was to come. "That's..."
"It's a custom version of a card you already know. Observe," he calmly stated as he slid the card into a magic card slot on his duel disk. A noose shot down from the sky and tightened itself around the Black Magician Girl's neck faster than anyone could react and it slowly dragged the endangered Duel Monster upright.
"You already know the rules of this card. At the end of your second turn after the card is activated, you lose your monster and I get my card back in my hand."
Yugi looked hopelessly at his Black Magician Girl, and could swear he saw a tear in the corner of her eye. He's going to kill my Black Magician Girl! Yugi panicked. If I can't get that card off the field, I'll lose her... I have Giant Trunade that Jonouchi let me borrow, but then he'll be able to play everything over again.. and my Raise the Dead, but I don't want to waste that so soon... okay, calm down. I can do this. I've been in worse.
"What's the matter, little Yugi? Afraid for your best card?"
This is it... I have to trust that my next card can save me...
Yugi pulled his next card from the top of the deck... the Black Magician. He couldn't help but crack a smile.
"What's that smile for, boy? You're finished!"
"No, YOU are! It's a shame you didn't pack a Mask of Restrict in that deck!"
Yugi's Celtic Guardian began to fade from the field.
"I use my two monsters on the field as tributes."
The Black Magician Girl faded, too - the combined bonds of Shadow Coils, Silence Band and Ebikyo Drakmord couldn't stop what was about to happen.
"And I summon..."
The form of Yugi's deadliest monster began to materialize in front of him.
"... the Black Magician!"
On cue, the magician struck an intimidating offensive pose, leaning back with his staff running down the entire length of his body.
"And since the monster that they were affecting left the field, Ebikyo Drakmord and Silence Band go straight to the Graveyard. Shadow Coils remains on the field as as it is a Continuous Trap as opposed to Equip Magic."
The Master made a nasty face as he dropped his cards into the Graveyard slot in his duel disk.
"I'm not done yet. I have another card to play... Raise the Dead!"
A hole opened up beside the Black Magician and an ankh started rising through it. Seated on its arms was the Black Magician Girl, unbound, pissed and ready to kick some ass.
"I use it to ressurrect my Black Magician Girl. Now how does it feel to have dead wood on your side of the field?"
There was no response.
"I play one more card before I launch my attack - the magic card, Dark Core!"
A pulsating ball of energy rose to the center of the field as it awaited Yugi's command.
"This card requires me to discard one card from my hand to activate it, and I discard Giant Trunade. Now, say goodbye to your Dragon and the Maiden!"
The sphere of dark energy crackled and fizzled as it came crashing upon the bulk of the dragon. One hit was all it took for it to come down hard on its side, and it began to fade from existence. The maiden raised her head and screamed in shock, and she too faded from the field.
Yugi gave no pause for response as he commanded his next attack. "Attack his life points directly!"
The Master looked up from his Duel Disk, and fear seeped from every pore on his face.
The two monsters attacked in tandem, and the Black Magician came crashing down first with the might of his staff, knocking the Bondage Master to the ground with the force of the attack. The Black Magician Girl stepped up to the mysterious man, with an almost cruel look in her eyes - apparently eager for revenge for the humiliation she had to suffer under the ordeal of the combined restraining cards.
"You have no cards to defend yourself with this time."
She swung her staff like a golf club, and to the master it felt that if she had hit any harder it would have knocked his head clean off. The Bondage Master's Duel Disk ticked off the points from the combined two attacks, rolling straight down to zero. He had lost miserably.
The Eye of Horus, the mark that the Millenium Puzzle left on Yugi, had begun to glow. Shadows coalesced from the darkened streets and alleys to surround Yugi and the Bondage Master, leaving them the only ones to witness the Shadow Game that Yugi had been playing all along.
"Please... please no... no more..."
"There is no mercy for those that would trespass in the souls of my friends. Now where is she? Where is Anzu?!"
"...the warehouse... torture chamber... J'z..."
Realization flashed into Yugi's mind. It was the same place that they had tortured Jonouchi ages ago... but before he could go, there was one last thing Yugi had to do...
He spoke in a voice that was half his, half that of an ancient Pharoah. "Now you will suffer..."
The Bondage Master panicked. His pants were growing shorter, the legs vanished and merged to become a skirt as more and more pleats shot through the length of the fabric...
"What you enjoy, you yourself will experience..."
The Duel Disk he wore snapped and fell to the ground, and he grabbed at his chest as it suddenly enlarged. He cried out in shock and his voice was no longer the same - it had raised pitch... somehow, he had become a girl!
"PUNISHMENT GAME - BOUND METAMORPHOSIS!"
The Bondage Master looked up at the ropes shooting straight for her transformed figure. They grabbed at her arms and pulled her back to one of the resident streetlights, Firmly they lashed the wrists together, winding more and more as it began to coil up the arm and around the cold steel pole. The loose ends merged into the finished rope, leaving no ends and no knots to pick at. She tried to pull away from the pole, but more ropes shot forth and wrapped themselves around her chest, pinning her upper arms to her sides and to the light. She tried to kick off the ones rapidly fastening her ankles together, but the shadow powers propelled the rope faster and soon she couldn't seperate her legs from each other or the light, leaving her powerless to resist the next one that wound itself around her knees. She screamed in agony, but it was cut short as a wad of cloth forced itself into her mouth and she felt her mouth forced closed. The wide tape unrolled and fastened over her mouth, sealing her mouth shut and shutting off her voice.
"And now, you will be seen for that which you enjoy..."
And Yugi walked off. The Bondage Master stood there, back to the streetlight, unrestrained but for the illusion born of his own desires. The duel over, his Duel Disk shut itself off and banged loudly against the streetlight as it snapped into closed position.
Rain started flowing down in torrents as Yugi approached the abandoned warehouse where he last confronted Rintama High, when they had forced Jonouchi back into their gang so long ago. It had never seen any repair other than what was absolutely necessary to keep the building standing, and he silently wondered why they continued to hold Anzu in such a decrepit place. Almost on instinct, he took off his school jacket and wrapped it around his Duel Disk to keep the moisture from shorting it out. He slowly apprached the building and heard the unmistakable voice of Jonouchi finishing up a duel inside.
"What?! That couldn't be! That was my best Duel Monster!" Jonouchi's Red Eyes Black Dragon shattered into thousands of pieces as his Duel Disk ticked off the last of his life points. The Rintama gang closed on him as he stood in disbelief, looking at the field and the monster that had decimated him. "With my own Thousand Dragon, no less!"
"Yes, the effects of Violent Mask can be quite impressive, can they not?" Hirutani taunted as his thugs pinned Jonouchi's arms to his sides. "And to think, I only lost 1000 life points in that entire duel to sustain that card..."
Anzu dropped her head. Her hopes of an early release had been shattered, and her arms and wrists were sore from having been tied up for so long.
"Now, strip him of his Duel Disk and get ready for stage two."
Outside, Yugi opened his eyes. They got Jonouchi too... he mused. That doesn't help at all... His gaze drifted over the building as he looked for an entrance. The building was in the same state of disrepair as when he was here last time, and he quickly found an unblocked entrance and darted inside.
"Yugi!" Jonouchi shouted. "What the hell took you so long?"
"I heard the end of your duel. They got you too, I see."
Jonouchi motioned over his shoulder. "They got Anzu first, and I thought I could beat Hirutani in a duel..." He tried to reach for the ground with his foot, but couldn't quite reach.
"Yes, I've been trying to work out my revenge for some time," Hirutani annouced as he and his gang stepped from the shadows of the warehouse. "Nobody crosses Rintama High and gets away with it... ever!"
Yugi stepped forward, undaunted. "What have you done with my friends?!"
"It's simple enough to explain. Just follow the rope."
It had already clicked that they had bound and suspended both Anzu and Jonouchi from the ceiling of the warehouse about a foot off the ground. What Yugi didn't notice until now is that the ropes leading to the ceiling weren't tied to anything - rather, they ran over a pulley connecting Jonouchi to Anzu!
"It's a bit of a balance, see. If one is let loose, the other falls. And just to kick up the stakes..."
Yugi's gaze adjusted into the gaping hole in the roof, letting in the rain that fell to the ground and started pooling underneath the spot where his friends were suspended over. A loose electrical cable situated itself in the puddle, and it traced itself back to the hand of one of the Rintama gang members who was holding the unattached plug.
"You can free one, but when you do..." Hirutani nodded to the kid in thick glasses who was holding the plug, who promptly thrust the plug into a free socket. The puddle immediately lit up with sparks of flowing electricity. "That is, you have to avoid getting shocked yourself."
Yugi just stood there quietly, analyzing the area.
"Of course, as long as you're on our turf you're fair game." The gang members began closing on Yugi as Hirutani continued to taunt him. "So, what'll it be? Will you abandon your friends? Or will you risk your life, not even sure you can save theirs?"
Yugi stood defiantly. "You're the coward, using my friends as bait!"
Hirutani scowled. "Your loss then."
A wry smile crossed Yugi's face. "You can't neglect the rules of the game now, can you?"
"I'll kill you, brat!" shouted the first of the Rintama gang as he lunged for Yugi. As he stepped over the spiderwebs of water leaking throughout the floor of the warehouse, it surged with electricity and shot up in a wall of sparks. The electrical surge stopped him dead in his tracks and he fell face forward, mere centimeters from Yugi's shoes.
The rest of the gang froze in place, wondering if the same would happen to them.
"Haven't you figured it out? It's a maze formed with the webs of water leaking from your electrified puddle. Step outside of the maze, and the eelctricity will sap you dry," Yugi explained as he started navigating through the webs of water. "The only way to me is to find your way through the maze."
Hirutani closed his eyes to think, and nodded. He looked at the trails of water, now sparking with electricity, noting the walls of the unusual maze. He began looking for a clear path the the moving Yugi and motioned his gang to close in.
One of the gang passed Yugi, reached over and grabbed him by the shoulder. "I got him!" he called just before the torrents of electricity shot through his arm.
"You're also over the wall."
Another one of the gang saw a clear line between himself and Yugi and began running, intent on tackling him. Yugi turned around to see a thread of water leak from the sides of the maze, joining together to form another wall - and the rushing member found out soon enough what happened as he charged headlong into a wall of sparks.
Hirutani saw what was happening. "Stop following him, he's controlling the walls of the maze!"
It was too late for the next member as he intercepted Yugi at an intersection.He grabbed Yugi by the collar of his shirt and started to lift him up, but the next thing he knew thousands of volts coursed through his body and he was knocked unconscious.
The end of the maze was in sight. One more member of the gang stood between himself and the freedom of his friends. Hirutani called out from across the maze, "Ha! You think you can unplug it? You'll just shock yourself in the pro-"
Lightning cut Hirutani's taunting short as it flashed through the sky and the sparks in the maze flickered and died. The last member rushed at Yugi, ready to mutilate him beyond recognition, but all he caught was a kick to the side of the head delivered by Anzu, rearing up and thrusting her bound legs at full force. Wasting no time, Yugi rushed past and unplugged the cord from the wall before the electricity returned.
He took a quick look at his friends and saw Anzu slowly work off the tape covering her mouth. The lower half of the gag came loose, and finally Anzu let out a deep sigh. "Thought that would never come loose," she announced as she looked at Yugi. She turned her head and looked over her shoulder at Jonouchi. "Thanks for the idea."
"It was nothing. I would have done it but you were closer."
Raw anger flared in Hirutani's eyes. He was about to lose his chance at revenge!
"You're safe for now, but how do we get you down?" Yugi asked his friends.
"YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO!" Hirutani shouted at the top of his lungs as he and the last member standing rushed for Yugi.
He didn't even bother to take time to decide what to do. He quickly thrust the plug back into the electrical socket, returning power to the deadly maze and knocking the last two members cold. He saw them keel over, andremoved the plug from the socket once more.
"Hey, didn't he say that you would be shocked if you went to unplug that?" Anzu chimed in.
"He did, and I knew I was taking that risk. But the cord was in good condition. I was right - he was bluffing, and I wasn't shocked."
"Nice thinking, Yugi. Now how about getting us down?"
His friends finally safe, the gold streaks in his hair finally toned down and disappeared. The battle fought and won, Yugi became himself once again.
"Ehh... I'm terrible with knots..."
It was going to be one trying time to get his friends down, that's for sure.
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