Even happily ever after is just a beginning

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Atem chuckled as he watched Mana and Mahad show off their magic while the rest of his Royal court surrounded him. The two magicians where bouncing an orb of light back and forth between each other and the first one that dropped it would lose the game. It was rather amusing watching the two compete since Mana had had a whole lifetime to gain more power that Atem had yet to witness. He glanced to the side where Seto and Kissara were snuggling and smiled to himself. He couldn't remember the last time he felt so at peace with his situation, so relaxed. Each and every one of his Sacred Guardians had found peace and happiness within their final resting place and with them being at ease, so was he.
Atem Sighed as his might shifted to Yugi, Tea, Joey, Tristan...... "No Fair!" yelled Mana and Pouted as she watched the orb of light disappear at her feet.
She pouted and folded her arms over each other, "I was distracted by the pharaoh!" she claimed and glanced at Atem with a look of discontent.
Atem, who had snapped out of it by now, frowned in confusion.
"What do you mean Mana?" he asked her as he felt the attention in the room shift to him.
He wasn't very talkative ever since he arrived in the afterlife. Although he wasn't unhappy, the others felt like their Pharoah simply needed some time to adjust. However, when he did speak up, everyone hung at his every word as though he was giving them orders in a war.
"Egypt to Atem, helloooo," Mana's hand waved in front of his face and Atems eyes snapped up to her.
"I'm sorry, what were you saying?" he apologized and caught her hand so that she would stop waving in front of his face.
Mana merely frowned down at him, since she was standing over him and he was sitting down. "You're alright Pharaoh?" Mana asked, her brown eyes reflecting the seriousness in her voice. Atem plastered a smile on his face and got to his feet, "I'm fine Mana, don't worry about me," he put a hand on her shoulder and squeezed it reassuringly.
Then he turned away from his friends with the intent to go walk for a bit, but Seto spoke up. "My king?", Atem held in a sigh and turned his torso towards his friend.
"Yes Seto?" he said, motioning for him to continue with whatever he wanted to say.
Seto seemed hesitant but continued none the less, "We know you've been saying that you are fine, my king, but we have been worried about you," Seto spoke.
Atem raised his eyebrows in surprise and looked around his group of ancient friends. The expressions on their faces confirmed Seto's words and Atem suddenly felt guilty for giving them anything to worry about, they deserved their peace a long time ago.
"I don't understand," Atem answered as he made eye contact with Seto.
Seto seemed at unease as he moved in his place but spoke up once again. "My King, you've been unusually quiet since you arrived, you've seemed distracted like you're not really here......like you're unhappy," he finally laid out their concerns.
Atem thought about this for a few seconds, Seto wasn't the person to talk about emotions unless they were really as concerned as they said. "You're right, I'm sorry. I have been quiet and distracted, but don't mistake that for unhappiness. I could never be unhappy with the greatest friends surrounding me.....and in the afterlife none the less," he told them as he eyed each and every one of them and smiled at them gratefully.
Their concern really touched him, he truly didn't know better individuals than the friends he surrounded himself with during his lifetimes.
"But that's just it, isn't it?" Isis spoke with her voice ever so soft and wise.
"You miss them, don't you?" she eyed him as if she was piercing right through his soul.
Unconsciously Atem took one step back from her intense gaze and tensed his shoulders, Isis broke off the eye contact and looked down at her hands that were resting in her lap. As though she was ashamed of the words she had just spoken.
Atem stared at the woman's face, he had forgotten how observant his friends could be and how well they knew him. He did indeed miss his friends, the feeling was unfamiliar to him as he had never had memories of his Egyptian friends, thus he couldn't have missed them.
Atem frowned again, he did miss them, but it wasn't like when he had lost Yugi.....Yugi.....
He closed his eyes for a second, needing to get a grip of his emotions, for as he was not planning to show weakness in front of his Royal court. As he clenched his hand into a fist, he felt two arms wrap around him. Surprised by this he looked up and saw Shimon standing by him. "It's alright my boy, we understand," he reassured Atem.
Atem chuckled by the so familiar-sounding words, the same words grandpa had used so many times when addressing either him or Yugi. He wiped his slightly wet eyes and smiled down at the man.
"Thank you Shimon," he said gratefully.
The smiled and patted him on the shoulder and Atem looked back up at his friends, "Thank you, all of you. However, I don't wish to worry you. It's true that I miss them....but that's not it," he said while he once again stood tall.
"Than what's wrong Pharaoh?" Mana pouted at him while she was spinning her staff in her hand.
"I wish I knew," he sighed, which earned him confused looks from everyone.
He shook his head and rose his hand when Mana opened up her mouth again to speak. "I need some time, I'll be back....soon," he said and turned around as he had originally done before Seto interrupted him.
Even though his friends protested Atem continued to walk away, surely they would survive an hour without him.

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