Greetings from the future! Please note, if you are new to reading this story, that it is set in 2006. Keeping that in mind should confuse you a lot less.

Disclaimer: I am the proud owner of several pieces of Gundam Wing merchandise, including a model of Deathscythe Hell and several books. I tried to present this as a legal loophole to my lawyer to prove that I do actually own Gundam Wing. He patted me on the head and said, "Nice try." Then he gave me a piece of paper. reads 'I do not own Gundam Wing or any person, place, or thing belonging to that name that may appear in this story. I am receiving no compensation, monetary or otherwise, from this work.'

Author's Note: Okay. Allow me to explain this…undertaking. This is a Gundam Wing alternate universe fic (present time), about spies. That's right, spies. Think James Bond. Ish. It will be very long. There will be romance, because what is a long story without romance? Het and slash both. If one or the other bothers you, I don't want to hear about it. I have a predilection for utilizing a grandiose vocabulary. I'll try to curb the urges whenever possible, but I still write wordy. That's about it. Please don't forget to review, o-tay?

Deadly Beautiful - Chapter One

By danse

Duo squinted around in the darkness, but it was no good. There wasn't enough light to make anything out. He reached into the breast pocket of his black jacket and pulled out a pair of glasses. They looked quite ordinary: small, squarish lenses in a popular style of thick black frames. However, when he put them on and pressed a small button, hidden inside the angle where the arm met the lens frame, everything he saw through the glasses was suddenly bathed in the green glow of night vision.

His employer had been proud of this technology. All of the wires were hidden inside the hollow frames. The glasses were worth an extraordinary amount of money, and Duo had been informed that he would be tortured and killed if anything happened to them.

He looked around the room again. Everything stood out in sharp, creepy relief. Moving as a whisper, he crept along the wall towards a sweeping staircase that led to the second floor. Keeping a memory of the blueprints in his head, he guessed that the room he was looking for was upstairs, along the unseen hallway.

A rustle from behind startled him and he whipped around into a crouch and drew his silencer-equipped gun as he searched for the noise. The room was empty. The security guard he'd dodged earlier was probably still in the kitchen, near the back door. Suppressing a sigh of relief, he put away the gun and continued his journey.

Blonde hair, blue eyes, late teens… He recalled the appearance of his target. This would be a quick job; one stab in the neck with the syringe he carried, then bundle her up and go out the window. Duo usually preferred disposing of his targets immediately, but apparently she was worth far more alive, and he knew to listen to his instructions.

He reached the corner where the hallway met the stairs and stopped for a final look around before he began his slightly risky ascent. Nothing revealed itself in the bare, electric green corridor in front of him, so he pressed onward.

He was three steps from the stairs when he heard another faint rustle and turned quickly towards the source. All he saw was something small hurtling for his head and he instinctively jerked back, his wide-eyed gaze following the thing as it embedded itself in the wall with a thunk, directly where his head had been.

The tip of his nose began to sting a little. He touched it and his fingers came away with a smear of dark liquid on them. That bastard cut my nose! He turned around to glare at the offender, gun in hand.

All he could see was a pair of glittering eyes staring at him from across the room, crouched in the shadows near the kitchen doorway. The rest of the body was too dark to be illuminated even by the glasses. Duo narrowed his eyes. You… Without hesitation, he aimed his gun and fired at the dark area below those taunting eyes.

The figure jerked upwards from his crouch, trying to dodge the bullet, but he grunted suddenly and Duo knew he'd hit him. Unfortunately, he didn't have much time to gloat, because a very big security guard ran into the hallway, having heard either the peew of silenced gunfire or the wounded grunt.

Duo didn't waste time panicking. He turned around, pulled the object out of the wall, and escaped up the stairs. The guard made to follow him, and he squeezed off three shots in succession at the beefy man. The guard collapsed and Duo made his way up the stairs to the second floor.

As he passed closed doors in his flight, he remembered his mission, but it was beyond help now. He would be smarter to abort it and escape with his life. He saw a window at the end of the hall, with an end table below it, and his face lit up. Should I stop and open it? But that would take time; he had caused a disturbance already. There had to be more than one guard in this house. Taking a deep breath, he leaped onto the table and used his momentum to crash through the window.

A shower of glass sparkled around him as he plummeted fifteen feet straight down, and landed in a topiary. He scrambled out of the stiff branches as fast as he could and ran full out for the fence across the yard. He thought he could hear someone yelling behind him. He scaled the fence, jumped to the ground, rolled to his feet, and kept running until he found the alley he was looking for.

He ran through the alley, dodging garbage cans, and without breaking his stride, he pulled a little black remote out of the pocket of his jacket and hit two buttons on it consecutively. A loud click was heard from the car on the other side, and then the engine started with a roar. He opened the unlocked door and jumped in, turned the key that was sitting in the ignition and sped away from the scene.

Duo perched apprehensively on the end of his chair and shivered a bit. The office felt cavernous and chilly, despite the dark wood paneling that covered the walls. Even though he was tired, uncomfortable, and a little scared, he couldn't help but think that his boss, with wealth apparent by his choice of interior decoration, could afford to heat the place once in a while.

"Were you followed?" The man on the other side of the desk did not look impressed by what he'd just been told.

Duo shook his head vigorously, and his braid echoed the movement comically. "I took all the necessary precautions."

"Good boy." The praise was rather distracted, as the old man was currently scratching his long nose, evidence that he was lost in thought. After a moment he looked up and seemed surprised to see Duo still sitting there in his office. "Well, I suppose it can't be helped; as long as our cover isn't blown. Did you somehow manage to find anything before you got out?"

"No…yes." Duo reached into the left thigh pocket of his pants and removed the object he'd pulled out of the wall. He put it on the desk between them. "Somebody threw this at me, and then all hell broke loose. I'm pretty sure it wasn't a member of the household who threw it."

The man whom Duo knew only as G stared at the thing with surprise and a little fear. Now that he wasn't busy running away from people with large guns, Duo had the opportunity to look at it more closely himself. It was obviously a weapon-he'd found that out the hard way earlier-but it was a very odd choice. It was small enough to fit in the palm of his hand, and shaped like a six-pointed star. Each point was a clean, double-sided razor blade; all traces of his blood had probably rubbed off into the fabric of his pocket.

He held it up in the light, watching it shine. "It's beautiful," he breathed. And it was. Terribly beautiful, and perfectly deadly in the hands of its master.

"It's called a shuriken, or a throwing star, if you don't speak Japanese." G said as he watched his charge examine the blade. "Most definitely not in the weaponry of that household. There aren't many people who can use those effectively."

Duo's attention was jerked away from the throwing star to focus on G. "You know who threw it at me, don't you?" he asked accusingly.

Instead of answering the question, G stood up and looked out the large bay window at the city lights burning below. "You look tired, Duo. Why don't you go home and get some rest."

Duo glared at G. It wasn't like him to dodge questions. But that wasn't a request, it was an order, and all Duo could do was set down the throwing star and leave the room. He stifled a yawn as he stood in the descending elevator, and by the time he found his own car and drove home, he was ready to sleep for a week.

A/N: Who tried to kill Duo? Who was Duo going to kidnap? Exactly what the hell is going on here? Why don't you leave a review and tell me what you think? (Come on, you guys are smart, and it's all pretty obvious.) On to Chapter Two!