This is a Gundam Wing fanfiction in three Acts.

Disclaimer: I own nothing except the pictures in my head

Warning: Angst. Thinking. Sap is a possibility. Shonen-ai? Up to you. Depending on your tastes, there's even a bit of humor.

Author: Kasey

Archive: Not unless I send it to you.

Status: Complete, self-edited.

Explainations: I do not believe in Brecht. Therefore, anything I deem necessary to explain will be taken care of in an addition at the end of the story, but not footnoted in the text.


This is dedicated to Apache--Warrior Princess, Queen of the Downstairs, Moose, Boxcar Willy, Tribble "the Kitten", Occy, Puss, Chang, Jemimah, Yang, Fluffy, Oreo, Tiger, Blackie, Casper, Smokey, Catlin, and Caltrop, the cats in my life.


"The Play of Life"
-Act I-


"The second act has just begun. We'll be busy."




"Huhh...." Wufei groaned and stumbled again. He was rain-soaked and in immense pain. One rib was broken, he was sure. Blood ran from a long, bone-deep gash in his left calf. But he knew the safe house was barely minutes away. He had been there many times, and kept it as well stocked as it had been when he found it. He hoped the first aid kit was still in good condition.

He whimpered, cursing his own weakness, when he finally caught sight of the old hunting cabin. His vision was starting to fail. He didn't have long, now.

Blindly, he grasped the door handle. He jiggled it a bit, grateful that it opened easily. That was as far as he got. His left leg crumpled beneath him. As his knees hit the wood floor, pain consumed him, and he passed out.


Treize shot up in his bed. The door had banged open, and then there was nothing. No sound. Just the pouring rain outside. He threw off the covers and grabbed up his robe.

Then he walked slowly out of his room, and down the hall. Past the bathroom. Into the kitchen. Still he heard nothing.

A gust of wind hit Treize's bare legs, and he shivered. The door really was open. He passed through the kitchen, and opened the half-door into the main room.

Pale moonlight from one window illuminated the slight form of a boy, unconscious, barely inside the cabin. Treize gasped and rushed forward. He kneeled down next to him. It was too dark to see the boy's wounds, except for the blood seeping out of his leg. He carefully rolled the boy over.


Wufei groaned. He struggled up, through darkness. He hurt. Oh, how he was in pain! Someone near him hissed in shock, and Wufei could feel strong hands tugging at his shoulder, turning him onto his back. He tried to open his eyes. All he saw was blackness.


It was so dark. Who was this boy? Treize squinted his eyes to make out the dim facial features, but failed. Whoever he was, he needed to get fully inside, out of the rain.

He passed his fingers lightly over the boy's chest and abdomen. There. A sharp intake of breath as he touched one of the ribs. Damn. It had to be broken.

Carefully, he lifted the boy up. Practically gliding, so as not to jar the boy, Treize crossed the room to a couch. He set him down.

As he pulled his hands out from under the boy, he could feel something warm and wet on one wrist. He passed a finger over it and held it up in the dim light. Blood. There was another gash on the boy's left forearm.

He hurried to the bathroom for the first aid kit.


Treize stared, shocked. He, himself, had stocked this cabin. He knew where everything was, and why, and how much of it he had put there. So why were there two medical boxes? He identified one as his own. A small, white box with the trademark red cross on the front. The second, he had never seen before.

It was a much larger box. Dark green in color, with a similar, though darker, cross. Confused, he flipped the box open. Indeed, the box contained everything his own kit had, and more. Medicines. Needles. Even plaster.

He was spending too much time thinking. He quickly closed the green box, lifted it, grabbed some towels, and rushed back to see the boy.


Light. What was needed was light. Treize pulled a reading lamp away from the wall and arranged it to shine over the couch. A few more adjustments, and he flipped the switch.

It was all he could do not to stare. The face that was twisted in pain and anger, the eyes squeezed shut and the lips dry and cracking as breath was forced through was Chang Wufei. The Gundam pilot. The one who had challenged him and lost.

Treize blinked. In all rationality, the boy was his enemy, and he should kill him. He was, after all, a Gundam pilot. But to kick a man when he was down...

He set to work, binding Wufei's arm with a towel. The wound was not bad, but pressure was needed to keep the boy from losing any more blood. As soon as he was done, he wrapped a similar makeshift bandage around Wufei's left calf.

Now that the blood loss was slowed, Treize went to the kitchen and began to boil water. He looked at the kitchen clock. Two-seventeen AM. Three-and-one-half hours until sunrise. Would Wufei make it? He left the water heating and returned to the main room.

Looking into the medical kit that he had recovered from the bathroom, Treize guessed that it belonged to Wufei. Had the pilot been using his cabin during his absence? It would make sense, though, since there was nothing in the old hunting cabin to identify it as belonging to Treize or OZ. Wufei may have thought it belonged to someone who would only use it during the hunting season.

Treize hunted, occasionally, but right now this cabin was his retreat. True, he had and old radio stashed in the cabin, and he always brought paperwork with him. And took it away with him when he left, of course. Not knowing about Treize, Wufei must have thought the cabin would be empty at this point in the year.

Treize looked at the weak form lying on the couch. As well for him that he had been mistaken. Without someone else to bind his injuries, the Chinese pilot might very well be dead by morning.

Treize sifted through the medical kit. He found some disinfectants, gauze, and varying widths of medical tape. He pulled a chair over to the side of the couch and piled the items on top of it. Then a sharp whistle from the kitchen caught his attention, and he got up to get the hot water.

In the kitchen, Treize also got a wash-cloth and a bowl. He returned to the main room. Wufei was starting to move. Good, he was still alive. Not good, he could further his injuries.

Treize quickly poured some water into the bowl and set the kettle on the floor, ignoring the hiss as it cut into the soft wood around it. He then dunked the wash-cloth into the water, wrung it out, and dabbed at Wufei's face.

Wufei flinched, and groaned. Treize wiped the dirt away from his face, worried to see that a little blood came with it. There was a small cut above his left ear. Treize adjusted the light, and looked to the wound. There was the cut. And there was the cause. Carefully, Treize pulled a short sliver of shrapnel out of the boy's skin.

Shrapnel. It made sense, now. All of Wufei's injuries were on the left side of his body. He had probably been running, or fighting, and an explosion off to his left would have...But how could he have made it so far without dropping, unconscious, as he did when he burst into the cabin? The explosion had to have been fairly close by.

But, Treize thought, I've been here for two days, and heard nothing.

Carefully, Treize washed out the small cut, and swabbed it with iodine. It was at a bad place for a bandage, but then, it wasn't bleeding much. The worst injury was on Wufei's leg. He had to deal with that, now.

Pulling another lamp over, Treize's suspicions were confirmed. As he unbound the towel bandage, he could see some shrapnel barely sticking out of Wufei's calf. He hadn't seen it, initially.

Treize threw his robe off to the side. The long sleeves were going to get in his way, and he needed to do this right, or he would further cripple the boy. Wufei's pants were shredded, and he had no problem ripping enough of the material away so that he could work without obstruction. Then he dipped his hands in the bowl of steaming hot water. Satisfied that they were clean, he set to work pulling out the offending metal.

There was a grating sound as Treize began the initial removal, and Wufei cried out unconsciously. Treize shuddered. It must be hitting his bone, he thought. Treize placed one hand on Wufei's leg, to hold it steady. He took a deep breath, and eased the jagged piece of metal out of Wufei's leg with his free hand.

Done. Blood was flowing freely from Wufei's leg, again, and Treize threw the shrapnel aside in his rush to wash it out and bind it. Hot water was used to clean the leg. A disinfectant, and a salve would keep infection from setting in. Then the gauze, for the blood to clot in, and finally the medical tape, to hold it all together.

Shaking and breathing hard, Treize sat back. He had seen men die before. Men, dying bloody, painful deaths right in front of him. One or two, at his hands. He forced himself to breath through his nose to prevent hyperventilation. Somehow, it was different when you were trying to prevent the death. Life was so fragile. The boy in front of him proved what he already believed.

Treize's hand brushed something sharp on the floor, and he picked up the piece of shrapnel. It was as long as his hand, and half as wide. He reflected that barely a centimeter had stood free from Wufei's body. It would be a miracle if the boy weren't crippled for life.

Treize looked up. He still had to deal with Wufei's arm. He unwrapped the towel around the injured arm. The wound there was not nearly as bad. After applying pressure evenly around the arm, Treize confirmed that any shrapnel that might have hit there had already been removed, probably by Wufei. Clean, disinfect, and wrap. Now what could he do about the broken rib?

Nothing, of course. The boy needed a doctor, a surgeon. Treize knew all the basic field remedies, and some more advanced, but surgery was far beyond him. He was torn. He could radio to his people to send out an emergency helicopter. Wufei would be healed by some of the best medics in the business. On the other hand, the Romefeller foundation would then choose to keep Wufei. A Gundam pilot could not be released back onto the streets.

Treize's thoughts were interrupted as Wufei moaned and opened his eyes. Immediately, the pilot tried to sit up. Wufei cringed, crying out quietly.

"Don't," Treize said, and gently eased him back down onto the couch. Wufei breathed hard through his nose in order to calm down. His vision was returning, slowly, but all he could see was a dark, blurry face silhouetted above him. Treize went on talking, trying to keep Wufei awake and bring him slowly back to consciousness.

"You have a broken rib, or cracked, at the very least. Also, there is a deep shrapnel wound in your leg. Moving now could jar either injury, so please don't. Your other injuries are minor. Can you hear me?"

Wufei blinked, and blinked again. His vision was still fuzzy. The voice he heard was a light tenor, and friendly. Oddly familiar, too. He couldn't think, though. He tried to nod, and winced in pain.


"Can you hear me?"


"Ah. Good. Can you see?" Wufei tried to answer, but wound up coughing sharply instead. Between his dry throat and wounded ribs, he fairly screamed in pain. Treize realized the problem, and ran back to the kitchen for some fresh water.

When Treize returned, he propped some couch and chair cushions up behind Wufei, so that the pilot was in a somewhat more upright position. Then he held the glass of cold water up to Wufei's lips and tipped it, and pulled it away again.

The pilot drank what he could. He swallowed most, but some of the water trickled down his chin. Treize gave him another sip. It was the same. Treize repeated the process until Wufei was swallowing each sip of water fully. The boy's lips were bright red from chapping and the sudden hydration. Wufei shivered a little.

Treize tried again.

"Can you see me?"

"Barely," came the weak reply. "You're..." Wufei blinked again and reached up with his right hand to scrub at his eyes. "Fuzzy," he finished.

"Hmm," Treize said thoughtfully. "That should go away soon, I think. You're lucky I was here. I don't think you'd have woken up, otherwise."

"Huh? Here?"

"Here, in my cabin. You couldn't possibly have taken care of those wounds on your own."

"This is your cabin?"

"Yes. Don't talk, now. I need to wrap something around your ribs." Treize shuffled through the medical kit, and pulled out a wide roll of medical tape. "I think this will do it. Hm. Do you think you can sit up?"

There was a slight hesitation. "Yes."

"Good." Treize reached one arm around Wufei and helped him turn, and sit up. Wufei winced a little, but said nothing. "You'll have to help me with your shirt, if you please," Treize said. He pulled the rain-soaked material up, and Wufei pulled his right arm free. Then Treize maneuvered the shirt over the boy's head, and off of his left arm. Easy.

Now Treize could see where the injured rib was. Purple bruising spread out near Wufei's diaphragm. Carefully, he wrapped the tape around and around the middle of Wufei's torso. When he was satisfied that there was nothing more he could do, Treize stopped, and cut the tape.

Wufei looked down to see the blurry white tape. At least his rib didn't feel like it was going to pop out of his body, anymore. His leg, on the other hand... He could make out the bright white of the bandages there, too. And more on his arm. He looked back up, squinting at his helper's face. The shape of the face, the sandy hair that was blurred in his vision... Did he know this man?

"Thank you."

"Don't thank me."

"I owe you my life."

"Never owe anyone your life."

"Who are you?"

Treize opened his mouth to respond, and shut it again. Telling Wufei his name might cause the pilot to jump, or jar himself in some way that would inevitably be very painful.

"Do I know who you are?" Wufei continued.


"Are you for or against Romefeller?" His voice was suspicious. Treize licked his lips nervously. He was on to him.

"I'm afraid I can't answer that."

"Can't answer? Or can't tell me?"


"You're with OZ." That was a clear statement.


"Do you know who I am?"


"So why did you help me?"

"I couldn't let you die. You were injured. It wouldn't have been honorable."

"General Kushrenada."


"Get away from me."

"I thought you might feel that way," Treize said quietly, moving to sit on the chair.

"Why didn't you just let me die? I would have been out of your way, General," the boy spat.

"I told you. Honor would not permit me to do so."

"What do you know about honor?!" Wufei was fast becoming exited, glaring blindly in his direction, and Treize was afraid he would try to move, soon.

"That's a very good question. Perhaps nothing. Either way, I couldn't kill a man when he's already injured. Neither, I suppose, could you." Wufei scowled.


"Chang Wufei," Treize started, then stopped, thinking. Wufei glanced darkly in his direction. "You use this cabin regularly, don't you?"

"Yes. I didn't know it was yours. Excuse me."

"No apology is necessary. Is this green first-aid kit yours?"


"I'm afraid you'll need to restock it."


"I will not complain if you wish to use my cabin, again. Please feel free."

"I don't think I'll get that chance, General."

"Why not?"

"You've got me. You have to hand me over to Romefeller."

"They don't know that you're here, Chang Wufei. As far as they know, I'm on vacation. Tell me, why haven't you brought me your second challenge?"

"Second challenge?"

"The one you promised me."

"I didn't think you would bother to wait for it."

"On the contrary, I look forward to it. Perhaps...when your leg heals?"

"I will challenge you again. If I am able to."

"If you are alive, you mean?"


"Why would you doubt?"

"Romefeller wants us pilots dead," Wufei spat. "I would think a top man like yourself would know that."

"Romefeller does," Treize agreed. "I want my second challenge."

"What are you getting at, General?"

"I have no intention of keeping you here. I did not tend your wounds only to send you to the headsman. When you can, go."


"Back to your Gundam. Or the other pilots, wherever they are. If you can contact them, I suggest you do. You shouldn't travel on that leg."

"You're not going to give me to Romefeller."

"That is exactly what I said."


"I want my second challenge," Treize repeated. "Is that a good enough reason?"

"It is, for me."

"Because you want to challenge me again."


"Are you hungry?" Wufei blinked, startled at the change in subject. Treize could see the pilot's eyes dilate slightly. His vision was returning. He didn't answer. Treize tried again. "When was the last time you ate?"

"This morning."

Treize frowned and thought about the time. It had to be nearly four AM, and Wufei had been here for a couple of hours...

"Wufei, when were you injured?"

"The blast happened around seven PM.... What time is it, now?"

"Almost four AM, I think."

"What!" Wufei jumped to his feet, startling Treize. As suddenly as he had moved, Wufei fell back onto the couch, yelling in pain. His leg! Now it was Treize who jumped up, frantically trying to sooth the boy.

"Stop moving, Wufei!" He placed a hand gently but firmly on the uninjured part of the pilot's chest, laying him back down on the couch. "Fighting now can only make it worse." Wufei choked and gasped for air.

Treize carefully picked up Wufei's left leg, holding it by the knee and the heel, and rested the foot on the arm of the couch. There were a few more spare couch cushions within reach. He placed them under Wufei's knee and calf, supporting the leg.

Wufei shook, angry at himself for being so stupid as to stand on an injured leg, and furious at being so weak as to show this much pain to the enemy.

Enemy? The General wasn't acting like his enemy. He was going to let him go. In fact, he was encouraging him to escape. Not that the wounded pilot was in any position to go anywhere. He tensed, and pain rushed up through his leg again.

Treize looked down at Wufei, who was trembling in pain. Something struck him. The pilot had been out in the rain for hours, trying to find shelter. He had known where the shelter was, but had fainted upon arrival. His hair was plastered to his face with rain and sweat, and he was coated in grime.

Treize stood and walked to the back of the cabin. Wufei watched him go, his vision still dotting around the edges. When Treize returned, he was carrying a blanket, and a clean towel. Wufei knew they were meant for him, but he flinched when Treize came near him.

"Allow me to help you," Treize pleaded. "You could easily get sick."

"I don't need your help!"

"And where would you be right now without me, Chang Wufei?"

"Back on L5," the boy spat. Treize winced. L5 was a colony that had recently detonated itself rather than fall to the Romefeller Foundation. Apparently, this was where the boy had lived before the war.

Treize sighed. "Forgive me."


"Then don't."

"I don't intend to."

"Will you at least allow me to give you this blanket? I would rather not postpone your second challenge any farther by adding sickness to the list of current delays."

Wufei frowned, then motioned for the blanket. Treize smiled a little, and stepped forward. Standing over the pilot, he unfolded the blanket, and laid it out over Wufei's body. Then, being particularly careful around Wufei's leg and ribs, Treize tucked the blanket in, to retain to greatest amount of heat.

Once Wufei was thoroughly cocooned in the blanket, Treize held up the towel he had brought with him. Wufei raised an eyebrow.

"Don't move," Treize said. He wrapped the towel around Wufei's head and gently dried out the boy's hair. When he removed the towel, Wufei was glaring up at him and the white towel was coated with soot and tiny spots of blood from the small ear injury.

"What was that for?" the Chinese pilot hissed.

"Hypothermia," Treize stated calmly. "It's cold, this time of year." Wufei scowled, but said nothing. "Ah, I forgot," Treize went on. "Food? You never said."

Wufei was silent, glowering at the General of OZ.

Treize sighed. "Please tell me if you are hungry, Chang Wufei. Do not let your own stubbornness weaken you any further."

Wufei sat up sharply, angered by the barb in Treize's comment. He cried out as the muscles in his leg were stretched. Treize was on his knees immediately, laying the pilot back down on the couch and applying gentle pressure at his shoulders, distracting him from the pain.

When Wufei had calmed down, Treize stood up again and backed away.

"I'm sorry, Chang Wufei. I should not have said something that would make you react that way when you are injured. I do hope that you will tell me if you need food, though."

Wufei focused his narrowed eyes on the man in front of him as best he could. Finally, he nodded. Treize nodded, as well, and turned quickly towards the door that, Wufei knew, led to the kitchen.