Author's Note: I decided, after reading this story, that I didn't really do as well as I could have done with it. As my apology to the few readers that have shown an interest in this piece, I have decided to revise and continue this piece. The Duo and Hilde pairing is my favorite in Gundam Wing and I hope that, through this edit, I can do it better justice and make it far more enjoyable for you!


Disclaimer: I don't own Gundam Wing the series, the characters, or (and this is quite arguable) much of the merchandise. If I did, you'd all be watching this story via animation as a continuation of the series. So please don't sue me for borrowing our beloved characters for a little bit!


As Lovers Do


Chapter One


She'd only meant to exaggerate one of her memories, not flip the switch to send thousands of them spilling out from the deepest recesses of her mind. Instead of recalling the pleasantries of spending warm summer nights on the roof of her shabby apartment with him by her side, she was remembering everything they'd used to do together. Everything from the way they'd stand outside, singing and running through the rain until it had soaked them through, to the way they had stayed in bed all day on their weekends off. Hilde had only meant to remind herself, just briefly, that there had been a time when she was happy and full of smiles and laughter. She hadn't meant to make the oh-so-painful realization that she was now utterly alone in the world.

And Hilde had never been more scared to be alone.

Duo had left again. Heero had come early in the morning, before Hilde would have normally dreamed of easing her tired limbs out from under the warm covers the young lovers shared. The two young men were on the first shuttle heading to earth; Hilde wasn't even awake to say goodbye.

All she'd been left with was a note, scrawled quickly in his uneven and nearly-indecipherable penmanship. It was written in black ink, ripped from a larger piece of paper that had probably once been a bookmark for some novel or another that Hilde had used to occupy herself the last time Duo left.

Babe-
I couldn't bring myself to wake you this
morning. There was an uprising of
some sort on earth and I'm with Heero
fixing the problem. I'll be home to you
very soon.
Duo

It wasn't the first letter that he'd ever written her. Hilde sometimes felt that there were thousands of the damnable things littering a beat-up old shoe box that she hid behind several boxes under her side of the bed. But they weren't all like that letter had been. Because Duo had come home to her after he'd written all of the others. He had kept his promises, hadn't hidden behind concisely written dialogue and empty letters written on tattered slips of paper.

Frowning, the slender young girl wrapped her arms around her fragile frame, concentrating her attentions on the difficult task of remembering how to breathe. It had been damn near two years and the slightest memory could still trigger a painful reaction like the one that she was experiencing at that very moment. It was always the same; her heart would begin to race, warning her of the dangerous consequences of letting her mind wander down its chosen path. Then the pressure in her lungs would build until she was sure that the combination of her heart and lungs betrayal was enough to overtake her senses completely. And she was forced to wait, letting her memories cause her body to ache, physically draining the gorgeous raven-haired beauty.

'Why can't I feel anything from anyone unless he's you?' her mind demanded.

But it really did no good to argue with herself. The end result of any of her deductions was always the same. She had been a fifteen year old girl when she'd first met him, young and naïve. He'd saved her life in many ways, some he was aware of while others were secrets as precious as the memories she kept of him. She had grown up in the six years that had followed the Eve Wars and so many things about her life had changed. For a while, the 

only thing that had remained constant was that Duo would always come back to her and she would always be waiting for him.

Hilde had made a home in the small apartment she could barely afford the rent on each month. Today, however, with the scrap yard and repair shop she owned and operated, making ends meet was nothing like the constant struggle the beautiful young mobile suit pilot and grown accustomed to in her younger years. Her life wasn't always perfect; she didn't expect it to be. But with him the place was home and her life was complete.

She was twenty-one years old with two successful businesses. There were several men that would have loved a chance to catch Hilde's attention; to be allowed to run his hands down her slender waist and feel the chin length strands of her dark ebony hair against his cheek. Just looking in her eyes was enough to hypnotize most men.

But all Hilde wanted was a man with long, chestnut brown hair and deep cornflower blue eyes. The man she wanted had seemingly forgotten about her in the fifteen months he had been away from her. And, try as she might, the poor young girl was utterly incapable of ridding herself of his memory.

"Why can't I fell anything from anyone unless he's you?" her voice was no more than a whisper and the lone tear that made its way slowly down her cheek was enough to express the hopelessness of her situation.