Genre: POV, Angst, Introspective
Warnings: Slight ( very slight.) language, Angst
Summary: How the world sees you and how you see yourself can paint a
completely different picture.
A/N: Because I really think there's more to be said about Quatre Winner.
Because this somehow fits my idea of how he could view himself. And so I
wrote this fic.
Dedication: To Seamus Harisen.he'll know why. Wherever he is now. And to my
Tro-chan *grins and winks* You know who you are.
* * * * * * * * * * * *
How is it one can spend so much of their existence watching the world
revolve around them without truly feeling they have any part within it? Is
it not peculiar even in a sea of people, a crowded room full of
dignitaries, friends, family and even foe, one can feel so entirely alone
without even trying. No man is an island.but I am. An island set adrift,
floating powerlessly on a torrential current as everyone storms about
around me. I stand on the shore, overlooking that vast ocean unsure of how
to take that first step and dive into the water to swim amongst everyone
else. Stranded on the sandy banks, no helpful stranger calling, "Come on
in! The water's fine!"
I crave to hear that voice.
However, there is no helpful stranger, no insistent voice calling out to
the lost soul on the shore. So I remain here. Stranded. Alone.
I often wonder if one single eyelash would bat if I threw my head back and
screamed. It would echo around the room and everyone would continue their
little pretenses, would sip their champagne and wine, heedless of the one
standing broken on the dance floor. I am hardly invisible. That is an
impossibility for me even if for one moment I disappeared into the shadows.
I am a fixture, needed, vital, taken for granted but still never really
noticed. Never really seen.
I stand shaking the hand of some foreign minister for something or other
that I could recall at a moments notice if I really cared to, if my mind
cooperated with me. So I offer the man a pleasant smile, an empty platitude
and once he is appeased, politely not listen as he rattles off something I
am sure I have heard multiple times tonight and am really not concerned
with hearing again.
Call me self absorbed and I would be the first to agree with you.
My mind is focused on things other than business and politics tonight, even
as I mingle around the room playing my ever present duty as the head of the
most powerful family company in the Earth Sphere. I am more preoccupied of
late and really can't be concerned with the endless squabbling of the
societal world I was created to become a part of. A scientific product
raised, molded, crafted, and if I am to heed the gushing of any number of
people, destined to be what I am. It matters not if I wish to be this
product so well marketed. It matters not if I wish to be a part of it
anymore than I wish to be anything else but.
The scion of the Winner Empire. I've long since lost my name.if I had one
to begin with. A true name and not something that means another thing
entirely to the world so intent on making me something I am not.
Though I have yet to discover what it is I actually am.
My thoughts are excruciatingly loud tonight and I bid my leave from
Nameless Politician #343 before his mindless drivel drives me into the pits
of insanity. I signal a passing waiter with the barest nod.something
instilled within me before I scarcely could speak the word 'waiter'.and
acquire another glass to replace the one whisked off on a silver platter.
Efficient staff are not hard to find when you have the money to pay what it
takes to provide the incentive for one to work hard.
I feel suffocated, head a ramble of unwanted thoughts, a heart full of
emotions, half of which probably aren't even my own. It is my gift, my
curse and while I am almost invincible in a board room, the echo of
emotions playing throughout the room is nauseating. I crave escape and
though I know the moment I step from the room my presence will once again
be needed, I climb the staircase to the upper level surrounding the
ballroom and hover in the open doorway to one of the many balconies.
Rubbing the bridge of my nose briefly, I down half of my champagne before
flicking my eyes in an all encompassing sweep of the room, a movement born
of that part of me always remaining a soldier. Though to look at me,
immaculate in a crisp tuxedo, polished leather footwear and designer styled
platinum hair, you'd hardly think I'd become accustomed to crawling through
hellholes and inhabiting much worse while slaughtering hundreds, thousands,
on a daily basis.
I've been called the 'Darling', the 'Angel' of the Business/Political
world. The papers, the tabloids, the television all plaster my image for
the entire world to see. This innocent with the sunny grin and a fragility
born of those belonging in true aristocracy smiles back to thousands,
millions, billions and they all believe the reality they are told to
believe. It just reinforces my belief that I am invisible, trapped behind a
mirror held up to the world.a mere reflection of what people want to
believe, have been coerced into believing they see. Nothing more than what
I was bred to be.
Leaning against the frame of the doorway, I catch sight of four familiar
figures as they move about the room and for my eyes, the explosion of color
emanating from their emotions separates them from the monotone of the crowd
around them. They are always clearer, more distinct in their emotional
projection than anyone else I have met and I would like to believe it is
due to some unspoken connection we have developed over time.
If only I didn't know better.
Duo Maxwell, somehow roguishly unique and yet elegant in his tux, hovers
around Heero Yuy with adoration shimmering golden around him, even as it
shines clear in amaryllis eyes. Heero, pristine and ever perfect in his
unassuming tux, leans casually against the wall beside him. His eyes survey
the room but I watch knowingly as they return always to glance at his
companion before resuming their surveillance. It is an eternal dance. Duo
forever Heero's closest friend, regardless of the cry of his heart and soul
for that something more, and Heero, uncertain and unsure, soaking up the
unconditional love that pours from Duo's every gesture and word. They dance
this never ending tango and even though their love burns brighter than a
small sun, they never break free from the steps. They will someday, I am
sure, and I pray every day that someday is soon. However, I expect I will
be receiving a call in the very near future from my braided friend with the
very latest tale from a not so unrequited love.
It is not so surprising I quickly fell into the role of confidant soon
after Duo and I became friends. I do not know quite how it happened and
exactly when the event took place but soon found myself on the receiving
end of all of Duo's hopes and fears regarding the pilot of Wing Gundam.
Throughout the war and even now in the years after I have followed this
love story between these two stubborn soul mates that refuse to get past
their own fears and reservations and just accept what destiny has written.
I wish with my entire being they would.
Because I am gradually beginning to hate the sound of the name Heero Yuy.
I do not begrudge their love, please do not misunderstand. How could I
begrudge two astounding and incredible people something so beautiful? How
could I when I have so avidly watched their love grow from the very start?
I believe I knew even before they were aware of it themselves.
Jealously is a twisted emotion. Envy even more so. I cannot help craving
something that I desire so much but feel I will never truly be able to
grasp in my own hands.
As if sensing my eyes on them, the pair in question lift their own to
regard me. Duo favors me with an enthusiastic wave while Heero simply
inclines his head, that ghost of a smile on his lips. I pull a sunny beam
from my repertoire, the smile gaining a swift grin from Duo and a slightly
larger pulling on Heero's lips before once again their attention is
I have fulfilled my role.
Another gulp from my glass and my eyes rest on the form of Chang Wu Fei,
engaged in a heated debate with yet another dignitary I care not to know.
My lips quirk at the familiar sight and I can't help the small chuckle that
escapes my lips at the poleaxed expression on the politician's face. I
imagine every one of his blasé opinions is crumbled into dust by Wu Fei's
astounding intellect and even more powerful will. Wu Fei's mind is a force
to be reckoned with and even I have floundered in debate with the
accomplished scholar and fallen prey to the very force of his will. Wu Fei
is an amazing individual, despite the self deprecating guilt and pain that
taints his soul.
My eyes continue to the final figure and I choke on a pained heave as
penetrating emerald eyes pierce straight through my soul, ripping through
with nauseating efficiency. Impassive as always, face giving nothing and
eyes spilling no secrets yet his heart screams louder than any vocal cry
ever could, seizing my own in firm hands. Such intensity in his longing, in
his desire and such agony in his rejection. With every day I blindly refuse
to acknowledge what those eyes are begging for me to see, the further I
watch him break.
I am shattering Trowa Barton's heart everyday and I am powerless to stop
He believes he loves me. It radiates from his soul every time I am near him
and my heart cries out to alleviate him from his pain.
But I never do.
How can I when what he is offering I just cannot accept, though every fiber
in my body is screaming, pleading, begging for me to do so. Trowa offers me
his heart, his love, his protection but how can I give myself in return
when I know he doesn't see the me hidden behind the façade of the one he
sees as his 'Angel'? I am not the person Trowa thinks he sees, he knows,
and he loves.
That person is not worthy of the priceless soul that inhabits Trowa
I tear my eyes from those pained orbs and turn, retreating from the doorway
and out into the night. I am hiding and I know it, wallowing in a self pity
so black and a guilt so deep that I fear I may drown under it soon. My body
feels iron clad and I slump against the railing of the balcony, once again
bringing my glass to my lips. The beauty of the full moon casting its glow
over the world beyond has no meaning to me and my gaze is empty as my eyes
grace the visage of the spectacular gardens surrounding this estate. My
mind still rests with the four men within the room behind me.
I was naïve, I am not afraid to admit it, when I first became a Gundam
pilot. Not of war.oh no. I was aware of the price I was to pay for
accepting the responsibility that came with controlling the machine of
death that was placed in my hands. I may have abhorred the thought of
taking another life but I was not about to gloss over murder with
sentimental notions of what was 'good' and 'evil'. I knew my duty as
clearly as my comrades did and I followed it as steadfastly as they
No my naivety stemmed from a hope that I would finally find a place to
belong. A place where I would no longer feel so isolated and so alone in
everything I lived, loved and believed in. That somehow I would find that
something to fill the ever present hole voiding my soul, the missing piece
to the jigsaw puzzle that I could never seem to find.
But it was not to be and I was a fool to ever believe it would. I was born
with everything, life with benefits handed to me on a golden platter and
the world just waiting for me to seize control and mold it into what I
willed. That was what my father bred me to be and I, foolish child that I
was, ran away with notions of fighting for what was 'right'. Of becoming
part of something greater than what my father had already boxed up for me
and left just waiting to be opened. I wanted to find people who would
understand, who would join together and become one.
A band of brothers.
I found none of those things. I found four individuals with so much to give
and yet who had received so very little. Heero, an orphan raised as an
assassin, trained to become a machine of war as surely as his Gundam was.
Duo, an L2 street orphan so used to having nothing, losing all those he
loved and the only home he'd ever known only to become a soldier, to become
Death, in the war that had taken all from him. Wu Fei, who had watched his
wife die at the hands of Oz, who watched his colony destroyed before his
very eyes. And Trowa. Trowa who was raised by mercenaries, without a name,
only having one after he stole it from a dead fool who glorified war. Trowa
who had no identity, no home.nothing.
And I? I believed I would be able to identify with these boys, these men?
I was a fool.
They never really saw me as a warrior, a soldier. Even as they recognized
my skill for tactics and my abilities as a leader, somehow I always
believed they did not think me fit for the trauma of war. I was an
innocent. I was a Relena Peacecraft who knew how to pilot a Gundam. Never
mind I had marksmanship as good as any of them. Never mind I knew several
ways to kill a man with my bare hands. Never mind I had been trained in the
art of war just as they had. Because they only saw the angel-faced Winner
heir, the rich boy with the big heart that believed he could fight in a
war. I was to be protected and admired but never accepted.
The war was no place for bleeding hearts.
My desire, so passionate, was compelling but in the end just not enough. I
helped unite five lost souls for the final battles but I never found the
unity, never found that sense of belonging that I so desperately craved. I
found four friends who could understand the horrors of war that was our
shared experience but never the kinship I thirst after.
Why would I even hoped to think I would ever be something close to those
remarkable examples of strength and sheer human spirit in the room behind
me. They've taken what life has thrown at them and rolled with the punches,
stood up, and kept on forging ahead, knowing that more torment may come but
still fighting and living.
When life gets me down I build a weapon of mass destruction, annihilate
colonies, almost kill the person dearest to me in the world, and turn into
a bitter little rich boy hiding from the world on a balcony, slowly getting
drunk on champagne worth enough to feed a starving family.
The glass slips from my fingers only to shatter on the ground below as I
slide boneless to the floor. I can't give a fuck about the thousand dollar
tuxedo I am soiling and tearing as I collapse against the marble stone. I'm
too exhausted to give a fuck about anything anymore.
Yes, I curse. I'm not fucking Prince Charming with all the social graces
and perfect manners all the bloody time.
My head is in my hands and it is all I can do not to break down and simply
weep. My shoulders are trembling with every sob repressed and I feel the
tell tale sting of tears welling in my eyes.
I refuse to let them fall.
I do not want to be the weak fool of a child I feel I am anymore. Do not
want to be this twisted, jaded example of humanity I've become. What right
do I have to feel this way? I have been given everything but when I don't
receive the one thing I want I bitch about life's slight like a spoilt
God, I am so tired.
A hand falls heavy on my shoulder and I flinch in surprise before his
essence wraps itself around me. Still I refuse to raise my head, refuse to
let him see how pathetic I've become even as I crave for him to accept the
truth.to love the me I am rather than the me he thinks he sees.
There is such sadness in his voice, such pain in his heart and I hate
myself a thousand times over knowing I'm doing this to him. Guilty.always
so guilty. I have so much to apologise for. To him. To the others. To the
His long fingers brush across my cheek and I bite back a curse as I feel
the dampness he catches on fingertips. One elegant hand cups my face as he
lifts my eyes to meet his own and I am drowning in the sorrowful emerald
orbs that fill my vision.
"What's wrong, Quatre?"
I want to tell him.want to hand him the broken pieces of my soul.but even
as I am screaming for his love, I am fleeing from him. The fear is always
there, the reality my heart is always dragging before my eyes.
Which Quatre Raberba Winner does Trowa Barton love?
"Quatre? Please? Why are you crying?"
I am too tired to fight anymore, too tired to think. I just want these
voices in my head to quiet and leave me with some measure of peace for just
one moment. I am collapsing against his chest before I am even aware of
moving and my tears are staining his shirt but I cannot call them back.
Burying my body into his warmth as his arms surround me and he pulls me
into his embrace, I whisper, cursing the brokenness of my voice as it
escapes my lips.
"Just tired. So very tired."
His arms tighten and he is crushing me almost painfully against him and I
am hating myself for allowing him even though I know I am just too weary to
pull away now. My soul is screaming for this one moment of respite Trowa is
The black cesspool of doubt swallows me and I am behind that mirror again,
looking out.begging.screaming.banging my fists against its surface. The
Looking Glass. I see what I desire most, what I crave, hunger, thirst after
but it remains out of my reach. I am never seen.me here behind the Looking