Disclaimer: The usual. Not mine. Not now. Not in the next hour. Never.

The inner child

Chapter 1: The discovery

"Duo please calm down. It won't be of any use if you barge in there threatening him and wreck havoc in his place."

Quatre tried to be reasonable with the young Deathscythe pilot but the black clad youth seemingly ignored him as they approached the hidden base of Dr. J.

"Listen Quatre, I just had a very shitty mission, okay?! And with OZ on our necks I don't understand why we have to waste our time with that crazy old man. Can't he just annoy someone else?" Duo grimaced. "How about his perfect soldier? That guy seems to know everything better than m- eh us anyway. For what would he need the rest of us?" He asked annoyed.

Quatre sighed. Obviously Duo was still upset about the fight he had with Heero before he had left for his last mission.

They approached the hidden entrance and entered the secret code before stepping into a cool dark corridor.

"That blasted place looks like a scene from Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde." Duo muttered as they made their way through Dr. J's lab. Quatre bit back a comment. For once, he fully agreed with Duo and besides, nobody in their right mind argued with Shinigami in a foul mood. Excluding Heero of course who was obviously oblivious to what was going on with his comrades especially Duo.

Quatre could understand Duo who had well adjusted to their small rebel group. He himself found it also quite disturbing how Heero always went his own ways not caring to include or inform the rest of them. He didn't know how Trowa or Wufei thought about this matter. The former pilot seemed not to be bothered and the latter had other things on his mind.

"He better has a good explanation for all this." The blonde Arabian heard Duo grumble under his breath as they entered the main lab room. They pushed the heavy swing doors open and saw that Trowa and Wufei were already there though with their backs turned to them. 'No perfect soldier!' Duo noted automatically. Obviously both pilots were looking at something extraordinarily since their expressions were quite flabbergasted.

"Hey guys, where's the old man? If he wants something he better be here quickly or I'm outta here."

Getting no comment he stepped up to his comrades and pushed them to the side to get a look at what they were starring. What he saw let him momentarily forget how to breathe. In front of him on a kind of shabby hospital bed lay the perfect soldier himself – fast asleep. And if it wasn't already a shock to the pilots to actually see the "does-he-ever-sleep?" pilot actually sleeping they couldn't get quite over the thing that it was not a fifteen year old who slept there - but a toddler.

Duo's chin hit the floor.