Quatre could not remember the last time he'd been in so much pain. He warily looked at the chains around his wrists and began to struggle weakly against them, in a futile attempt to break the bonds. He stopped abruptly when he accidentally jarred his bruised ribs. Gasping for air, he remained hanging from the prison wall.
Hearing footsteps approaching, he slowly raised his head, a glimmer of hope in his tired eyes.
The door to his cell creaked open, revealing a tall uniformed man that was probably in his early thirties. Once he stepped inside, Quatre masked all emotions, and stared indifferently at the person who had inflicted all his injuries for the past few days.
The man languidly walked up to the youth, and once he reached him, used one hand to cup the other's chin. "Talk."
Quatre glared at him before twisting his head away.
Quatre's head snapped back with the impact. The man sneered, amusement in his eyes, before he grabbed the blonde locks and pulled so their eyes met.
Defiant blue eyes still met his.
All traces of amusement left the man's eyes and he punched the boy in gut.
Unwillingly, Quatre released a gasp, eyes widening in shock, which quickly turned to pain.
The man smiled, rubbing his calloused hands on the blonde's face. "When are you going to learn? If you tell me what I want to know, this would all be over." He leaned forward, breathing into the pilot's ear. "Wouldn't you like that?" Quatre couldn't help but shiver slightly from the contact.
Moving his head back, the man laughed. "You're pretty cute you know. I know a _lot_ of people who would like to get to know you better." With one last lingering touch, the hand was gone.
Moments later, Quatre felt himself falling.
He landed on the cold stone pavement, flinching as his dislocated shoulder made contact first. "Unh!"
He felt the man kneel down beside him, brushing his hair back lovingly.
Quatre clenched his eyes shut, pulling away at the same time.
The man chuckled softly. "What's the matter? I thought you would be a little more appreciative since I let you down from that awkward position."
Quatre opened his eyes, glaring at the other, but did not say anything.
"Oh, there they are. Those hard blue eyes that I have grown so accustomed to," he humored before lowering his own head so that they were inches apart. "You'll crack soon. I'll make sure of it."
With one last smirk, the man stood up, gave a swift kick to Quatre's side for good measure, and left the room, laughing.
The Sandrock pilot lay on the floor, body shaking. He willed the pain to go away, and tried to force the sting behind his eyes to disappear.
Closing his eyes, Quatre leaned his head heavily on his uninjured arm, one thought replaying over and over in his mind. 'Trowa . . . '
* * * * *
Trowa Barton's door slammed open with extreme force. The brunette turned away from the window to see Heero standing in the doorway.
Heero lifted a piece of paper in the air. "Found him."
With a quick nod, Trowa crossed the floor and both were out of the room in seconds.
Wufei and Duo waited for them in the hangar.
* * * * *
December 31, 1999