Kitsune: Chapter FOUR is up in record time!!! ^__^
Tempest: Wow… it only took you a week this time
Tempest: I hope this chapter has some action in it.
Kitsune: Don't worry! There's plenty! Here ya go! Chapter four!!
Disclaimer: I don't own Gundam Wing! Sunrise, Bandai, and some other company do! You won't get any money because I don't have any!
Warnings: AU, Slavery, shounen-ai, maybe yaoi (boy + boy relationships) and language. You don't like? You don't read!
Wufei awoke again to a bright sunny day. Treize had again chained him to the sofa for the night, but presently, the young lord trusted him enough to let him move freely. Wufei still hated the man, but knew when he was at a fighting disadvantage. Treize was both taller and heavier than him, and could easily defend himself from whatever Wufei could throw at him.
The noble was considering testing his rebellious slave's obedience. Making up his mind, he turned to the young man. "Go to the stable and fetch my horse Apollo. Tell them to also saddle and bridle three other horses for the hunt."
As he turned to leave, Wufei wondered what the "hunt" was. Casting that thought aside, he realized his chance for run away. Treize had practically shown him how to escape! He could hardly contain his anticipation, but managed to calm himself.
He reached the stable, and looked around for Trowa. He was not trying to be friends with this boy, he told himself; he just wanted to get away. He found the brunette boy cleaning the horses' tack.
"Trowa," He looked up from his work. "I'm supposed to get a horse for him and three others for a 'hunt'." He nodded and got up. They walked to the other side of the stables, where the riding horses were kept.
"Did he say which one he wanted?" Trowa asked, looking at all of the well-bred horses. Wufei nodded and replied:
"I think he said Apollo…?"
"Alright," Trowa stepped into a stall and led a horse out. It was a large bay stallion. "Give me that saddle over there, would you?" Wufei picked up the saddle and handed it to the taller boy. He put the saddle on the horse's back and fastened it in place. Then he pulled the bridle over Apollo's head and put the bit in his mouth.
"I'll go get the other horses ready. You take Apollo and wait outside for Lord Treize," Trowa instructed him. Wufei was elated, but didn't let his face show it. Trowa had unknowingly given him the perfect chance to escape. He did as he was told and led the horse out into the courtyard. The stallion was well trained and followed him obediently. Wufei stroked his long nose.
He looked around, and seeing no one nearby, and swung up onto the horse's broad back. He had never learned how to ride, but now was as good a time as any, and he would learn out of necessity. Wufei gathered the reins in his hands and kicked the horse lightly with his heels. Apollo responded and set off at a smooth canter.
As he rode through the fields, he heard Trowa shout something back at him. Taking a quick look back, he noticed that Treize had arrived at the stables. He shouted to some men nearby. Then the lord quickly mounted one of the other horses and set off in pursuit of the runaway slave.
Wufei had seen the fury on Treize's face. He urged Apollo into a full gallop. The horse's quick strides ate up the distance quickly and he reached the edge of the forest. The young man saw a critical error in his plans. The woods were far too dense for a horse to run through at full speed.
While the stallion was still galloping, Wufei jumped and hit the ground running. He could hear Treize approaching at an alarming speed. As he ran into the woods, he could hear more hoof beats and the baying of hounds. After only a few moments of sprinting, he realized a fault in his hasty decision.
The woodland was bumpy and rocky, and he stumbled many times over protruding tree roots. He figured out why the estate had no barrier wall around it. None of the slaves were permitted shoes, for the fields had soft ground. But here in the woods, it was far too treacherous to run at any speed because of the stony ground.
The crying and yelping of the dogs grew louder and filled his ears. They were following his hot trail. Stumbling through the bushes, he regretted his attempt at escape; now he would be caught and returned. To him, it was a fate worse than death.
He climbed up a leaning oak tree and lodged himself in the top branches. Loud men's voices merged with the baying of the hunting dogs. Wufei prayed to all of the gods he knew of that he would not be found. The dogs came into sight and all gathered at the bottom of the tree, barking for all they were worth. The hunting party also came near.
One of the men called the dogs off. Wufei watched with dread as Treize dismounted and peered into the upper branches of the tree. Wufei was sure that he could not see him. The young lord looked enraged, but he calmly called out.
"Wufei, get down from that tree," No reply. "There is no way you can escape, so don't attempt it. I suggest you come down now before I have to take drastic measures." Wufei decided to hold out as long as he could. Then he heard a creak and then a snap. The branch he was sitting on broke under his weight and he came crashing to the ground.
The two other men seized him and hauled him to his feet. Wufei decided that even though he was captured, it didn't mean he had to go quietly. He thrashed, kicked and bit while the men wrestled to tie him with ropes. They fought back, kicking and punching him. A loud gunshot rang out, startling birds into the air. Wufei froze.
Treize had fired his revolver into the sky, but it was now pointed at the young slave's heart. Wufei's chest heaved and he gasped for breath. Now he was out of energy and the men securely tied his bonds. All the while, Treize stared into the young man's onyx eyes. There was still a great deal of fire within them, but he would break this boy yet.
Trowa was frightened. No other slave that he knew of has been so foolish as to try and escape. He feared for Wufei's life. Treize was usually a very reasonable and level-headed man, but when he was provoked… that was a whole other story.
The lord had brought Wufei back; the boy was unconscious, bound, and tossed over the back of his horse. Treize had sent Catherine to gather all of the slaves on the estate. He was going to make an example of the bold slave boy as a warning to the others. They gathered in one of the lower fields, where there were a few trees scattered about. All of the slaves huddled in small groups and whispered softly.
Dorothy made her way down the hill, with Relena, Zechs, and Noin following. She marched up to her cousin and demanded to know what was going on.
"I can't let an act of such defiance go unpunished," was all he replied. He dismounted his horse and pulled Wufei down, none too gently. The boy had since awoken but remained facedown and limp on the ground, watching cautiously. Then he was dragged up by the two men and led over to one of the small trees.
They untied his ankles and stood him facing the trunk of the tree. Forcing his arms above his head, they tied them to an overhanging branch and then walked away. The tree was not very tall, but Wufei could just keep his feet flat on the ground. He craned his head around and saw Treize.
The young lord was dressed in a red huntsman's coat, long breeches, and tall boots. His sapphire eyes were cold and filled with fury. In his hand he held a long leather whip, the ends adorned with pieces of sharp glass and metal. He came forward and ripped the thin shirt off of Wufei, exposing his back.
Wufei could not turn around, and did not see the first strike of the whip. He cried out, his yell becoming a whimper. Treize swung again and again, whipping the young man mercilessly, his face not showing remorse or anything at all. Trowa turned his head away, not wanting to look anymore, but he could not deafen himself to the boy's screams. Heero too, winced as he heard the crack of the whip and the cries of the Asian boy.
The pain was far beyond intense. Fire raced up and down his backside. His blood was flowing over his back and down his pants and legs. Wufei squeezed his eyes shut, tears of shame and pain running down his face. Each time the whip came down, a flame seemed to sprout from his back. He cried out, and managed to take another sobbing breath as a new slash appeared.
Everyone present was silent with horror and fear. Wufei was now half kneeling, the branch bending with his weight. His whole backside was covered in blood, and so was the ground around him.
"Treize! Stop! Stop it!" Dorothy called out, sickened by the lack of feeling her cousin was showing. If he continued, the boy could bleed to death. He did not stop. After a moment, he ceased and spoke to Wufei.
"Are you sorry?" he asked cruelly. Wufei tried to answer, but could only manage a sob. "I suppose not. I will stop right now if you apologize and say that you will obey me in the future." The boy wanted the suffering to stop; it was so agonizing. But a small part of him still wanted to defy Treize. "Well, what do you say?" His first attempt at an answer came out as a croak. Then he managed to whisper a reply.
Treize's eyes grew wide and then narrowed. He moved to draw the whip down again, but Dorothy ran over and snatched it away from him. "What do you think you're doing?" She demanded. "If you whip him anymore, he'll bleed to death! Are you trying to kill him just for running away?" Treize offered no answer and stormed away to the manor.
The slaves stood about, wondering what they were supposed to do. The lady was still in a fine temper. "All of you! Get back to work!" They started to disperse. "You two!" she called to Heero and Trowa. "Go and untie him and try to clean him up."
The two boys approached Wufei slowly. He was covered in crimson blood, and had apparently blacked out. Heero reached up to untie the ropes and Trowa bent down and picked the boy up, surprised at how light he was. As Wufei's blood soaked his shirt, he wondered if it was only his desire for freedom that had driven him to put his life at risk. Maybe there was something else…
Kitsune: So what do you think of Chapter four???
Tempest: Pretty good, but what about Quatre and Duo? They aren't in there yet.
Kitsune: Don't worry about that… I have plans for them *grins evilly*
Tempest: Well that sucks for them.
Tempest: What are you going to do to them?
Kitsune: I'm not telling you!
Kitsune: Well guys, you know the drill! Read and Review! Thanks! Oh, check out some of my other stories too! ^__^