This is a Gundam Wing fanfiction.

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 III, scene 1-


"It is now time for the third and final act to begin."




"Are we back at a tie?"

"Seven to seven," Wufei said, disgusted. They had played fourteen games since the first, and managed to tie every second game.

"I congratulate you, Wufei. Not many people have beat me at this game."

"I never lost Go-Mo-Ku, before," Wufei countered.

Treize smiled. He looked at the bedside clock. "It's been a slow day," he said.


"Would you like to eat before we head outside?"

"A little."

"Let me see what I have. said that you like to read?" Wufei looked up at Treize as the taller man stood.


"What kind of books?"

Wufei shrugged. "Histories, novels. Some fantasies." Treize dropped to his knees and shuffled through the bottom drawer of the dresser.

"Heros, lovers, magic, kings and queens, ah, and plenty of swordplay."

"Sounds good to me," Wufei said.

"Here," Treize said, tossing the worn paperback to him. "I'll see what I can do about dinner." Wufei looked at the picture on the cover of the book curiously. He turned the book over a couple of times before opening it and reading the credits.

Treize smiled as Wufei became thoroughly ensconced in the book. Perhaps these young pilots weren't so different from other teenagers. Wufei, at least, played games, read books...they had feelings, and unique thoughts. Smiling to himself, he quietly left the room.


Almost an hour later, Treize returned to the bedroom. Wufei was still reading the book, and had made remarkable time, reaching near the middle of the thick book.

"You read very fast," Treize commented from the doorway. Wufei looked up, startled. Treize smiled disarmingly. "I've made dinner. There were some game birds in my freezer--you don't mind?" Wufei shook his head. "Very good. I'll bring them in. I've made hot water--would you like some more tea?"

"Yes, please." Treize smiled, bowed his head slightly, and left the room. Wufei sighed and settled back against the pillows. In a way, he was surprised at himself. Staying in bed so long would normally have made him irritable and jumpy... Yet, Treize had played Penté with him, and given him a book to read, and he was actually quite calm and content. He smiled slightly and looked absently at the clock.

Almost five o'clock. Wufei frowned. The other pilots would be coming to get him in a few hours. He looked at his leg, which was still covered by blankets, and realized that he really hadn't thought much about his leg for the past few hours. Or his ribs. Treize had done a remarkable job of taking his mind off of his injuries.

Treize. As Wufei's thoughts returned to the pilots, he remembered the war. The war had gone on for far too long. It was a disgusting war, far moreso than other wars he had learned or read about. Yet, beneath the facade of General Treize Kushrenada was a man that Wufei wished to know better.

"I'm sorry," Wufei heard Treize say. Wufei's head shot up. He hadn't noticed Treize walk into the room, but now that he noticed him, he could also smell the delicious aroma of roast bird.

Treize had seen the small pilot frowning at his hands, and thought he had disturbed Wufei's thoughts, but apparently the boy hadn't even noticed him until he spoke.

"Don't apologize," Wufei said.

"Fine, then. Wood pigeon?" He asked, offering a plate to Wufei.

"Is that what it is?" Treize laughed as Wufei poked at the lump of flesh on his plate. It looked a little strange, but smelled good. He took a small taste, smiled approvingly, and continued to eat. Treize poured tea for both of them before sitting down.

"It's very good," Wufei said. "You like to cook, don't you?"

Treize nodded as he finished chewing a bite of food. "Yes. Although...I almost never ate meat as a boy."

Wufei tilted his head. "Why not? Why now?" Treize closed his eyes and blew over the tea in his cup to cool it down before taking a sip.

"I'm afraid it's not a very noble story, Wufei." Wufei regarded him skeptically and Treize laughed. "Where I come from, it is customary to keep geese as pets," he said. "I was given a gosling before I was even old enough to eat meat. That bird was my pet and protector for years. It grew up to be a very healthy goose, because I gave it bits of my own food as well as its feed."

Treize stopped and took a bite of woodpidgeon. He sighed, and looked back at Wufei, who was waiting patiently for the rest of the story.

"One winter...the same year that I broke my hip, poor goose disappeared. I did miss it terribly, you understand." Wufei nodded. "I asked my father to search for her...he promised he would. Two days later, I ate a meal that I had never tasted before." Wufei gasped, realized where the story was leading.

Treize nodded. "When I found out that we had eaten that goose...I swore off meat of any sort. My father was the only one who heard me." Treize looked down at his plate, almost wistfully. "Three years later, the Canque Kingdom was destroyed. My father official, in Romefeller, at the time." Treize looked up into Wufei's eyes. Wufei stared back, surprised that Treize was telling him this. "He died the same day the leader of the colonies was assassinated. Another orphan and myself were placed together under the care of my grandmother."

"Zechs Merquise," Wufei breathed. "He's Milliard Peacecraft, I know."

"You Gundam pilots..."

"Don't!" Wufei cut in, almost angrily. Treize snapped out of his troubled reverie and looked at Wufei.

"What's that?"

Wufei fairly shook as he spat at Treize. "Don't say anything more. I...I can't listen to it!"

Treize shook his head to clear it, and took a long sip of his tea. Finally, he looked back at Wufei.

"I'm sorry. I didn't realize I had gone so far. Where was I? Ah. It was Milliard who convinced me to eat meat again, because he had an appetite for steak, and my grandmother would cook it often." Wufei watched Treize suspiciously for a moment before he settled down and resumed eating. "It was more difficult to start eating fowl again..." Treize hesitated, and Wufei raised an eyebrow.


"I still can't eat goose," Treize admitted. Wufei almost choked into his woodpidgeon.

"So long!"

Treize grinned. "That goose just happened to be my best friend, Chang Wufei! Come now, and tell me that you've never had a animal that you cared about?"

Wufei started to shake his head, but stopped. "There was a cricket." Treize coughed.

"A cricket?"

"Hmm. Master Long kept it in a cricket box, and asked me to care for it. It was all part of my training, I suppose. At least it was nice to listen to."

"Please don't tell me that a bird got to it?"

"No. It died of old age." Treize smiled and nodded. Wufei looked down at his plate. It was almost empty. "Meiran..."

"Your wife?"

"Yes. She had cats."


"I think I paid more attention to the cats than I did to her." Treize stayed silent, unsure of what to say. "It was a family of cats, a mother and her two kittens. All three calicos."

"They are rare," Treize said. Wufei looked up at him.

"I'd heard so...but...they were temperamental. That's what Meiran liked about them."

"She sounds like a wonderful person."

Wufei nodded quickly. "She is!... Was..." He glanced at Treize, and then back to his plate. Empty. So empty. He felt so empty.

"Would you like some more, Wufei? There's plenty."

Wufei looked up. "Um. Yes, please." Treize stood and took Wufei's plate. Wufei stared at the spot in his lap where the plate had been resting, and didn't move until the replenished plate had been returned.

Treize sat down after giving Wufei his food. He frowned for a moment at Wufei's lonely expression, then took a bite of food.


"Uh-hmphm?" Wufei looked up to see Treize with a mouthful of food looking questioningly at him. He tried to stifle it, but laughed out loud. Treize looked sideways, as if there were someone else in the room for him to offer his wry expression to. He swallowed. "Ahem! Excuse me. Yes, Wufei?"

Wufei calmed down to a mere snicker, but the light of laughter did not leave his eyes. "Treize...I was just wondering..." His expression became more and more serious, and Treize raised an eyebrow. " you want to do?"

"What do I want to do?"

"After." Treize looked at Wufei appraisingly. After. After the war.

"I don't know, Wufei."

"Do you want to do...something else? I teach." He looked into Treize's eyes. "Do you think I can teach?"

Treize stared back into Wufei's deep, black eyes. "I think so."

"What could I teach?" Wufei's eyes were asking as many questions as his voice was.

"You teach what you know, Wufei. Teach what you excel in, what you love to do." Treize bit his lip, hidden by his teacup.

"What if it's not remembered?" Ah, the real question.

"You mean this war, Wufei?" Treize saw the corners of Wufei's eyes twitch, and knew he had hit on the young pilot's real concern. Treize sighed. "Wufei...if I tell you my thoughts on this endless war, they will merge with your own."

"I know," Wufei said, quietly.

"Therefore, I cannot tell you."


"I wish for your opinions to remain pure to yourself and your cause."


Treize glanced sharply into Wufei's eyes. "Tell me, Wufei. Do you believe in total pacifism?" Wufei's eyes went wide, and he opened his mouth to speak. He shut it again and looked at his plate of food, which he hadn't touched since Treize returned it to him.

"Oh...", he whispered. Treize stood. He walked over and sat gently on the bed.

"Wufei," Treize said, "You understand?"


"Ah." He leaned towards Wufei and, conscious of his injuries, hugged him tightly. "Please survive, Wufei."

"And what about you?" Wufei grumbled, hugging him back.

" dear friend. I'll be fine. Do not fret over my health." He lightened his voice to ease the tension in the room.

"Hn." After another moment, the two pulled away from each other.

"I think it's time for you to get outside," Treize said, looking at the clock. Wufei glanced at the clock, and nodded. Treize picked up the plates and cups, and moved them out of the way. "I'll be back in a few minutes," he said, and left the room.




"The Play of Life"
-Act III, scene 2-




Humming quietly to himself, Treize found two chairs, and took them outside the cabin. He set them up so that one chair faced the other. Thinking quickly, he brought out a small cushion from the couch to set on one of the chairs. Then he returned to the bedroom. Wufei was reading the book he had given him, again.

"It's all set up," he said. He pulled back the blankets and sheet. Wufei winced when he saw the russet of dried blood on the white sheets. Treize paid it no mind, but was relieved to see that no red had peeked through the second set of bandages on Wufei's leg. "Are you ready?"

"Hmm," Wufei said, grunting and looked down at himself. He braced himself for the pain he knew was about to come. "Yes." Treize reached down and picked Wufei up exactly as he had done that morning. Wufei reached his arms around Treize's neck to help steady himself, still not happy at being carried.

Treize laughed at Wufei's expression. Wufei glared at him.

"I'm sorry," Treize apologized. "Does it hurt?"

"No!" Treize smiled and nodded.

"Very well." He started to walk towards the door to the bathroom. "Um. Wufei, do you need to use the bathroom, before you leave?"

Wufei glanced at Treize, then concentrated on pushing the door out of the way so that Treize could walk through.

"No. Thank you." Treize carefully slid through the doorway, through the bathroom, into the kitchen. Wufei could see a number of dishes stacked about the counters--evidence of Treize's recent cooking. He was unable to reach the half-door that separated the kitchen from the main room, so he gritted his teeth as Treize kicked the door open.

"Are you all right?" Treize asked as he walked into the main room. Wufei glanced up at him and nodded. "Good." Treize had left the door to the outside open, and Wufei stretched his neck to see the grass in the clearing.

Treize walked outside, and Wufei noticed the two chairs he had erected. Setting Wufei down was slow and carefully done, and the young pilot let out a tiny breath he had been holding as he sat down without pain. Lifting Wufei's leg onto the chair was another matter, and Treize had to calm him twice before he settled down.

Then Treize ran back into the house, and returned with Wufei's shirt and a chair for himself. He set up next to Wufei, and checked his watch as he gave Wufei his shirt.

"What time?" Wufei asked, donning the garment.

"Seven twenty-nine," he answered. Then there was silence as they watched the sky and listened for approaching aircraft.

Wufei stole a glance at Treize, and smiled. It was a somewhat masked smile--more of a smirk, but genuine none the less.

"Treize?" Treize shook his head and blinked, as if he had been startled out of his thoughts. He looked over at Wufei, as attentive as he had been all day.


Wufei looked Treize straight in the eye. "Thank you. For everything."

Treize smiled. "I think it is I who should be thanking you, Wufei." Wufei frowned. "But in the meantime, you are quite welcome." Wufei nodded, satisfied with this courtesy.

They resumed watching the sky, and moments later, Wufei swiveled his head to look east. Treize caught the movement from the corner of his eye.

"Are they here?"

"A couple of miles that way," Wufei said, pointing.

"Ah. Well, then, Wufei, goodbye." Wufei turned back to look at Treize again. They were both smiling. Unarmed. Friends.


"I am waiting for your second challenge."

"I'll bring it." The sounds from the east became clearer, and Treize recognized the rhythm of a helicopter.

"So..." Treize leaned forward and hugged Wufei again. Wufei leaned into the embrace, holding the other man tightly. "Farewell, Wufei."

"Goodbye, Treize," the young pilot answered. "...Good luck." Treize stood, and made a small bow to Wufei.

"Thank you, again, Wufei. Live well, and honorably." With that he picked up his chair, turned, and walked into the cabin. Wufei smiled lopsidedly as he watched Treize go. He was Wufei again, pilot 05. And Treize was General Treize Kushrenada, now. Or perhaps...maybe they could hold off from returning to the war for just a few minutes longer.


Treize closed the door behind him. Like a curious schoolchild, he knelt by the small window that faced Wufei, and watched. Wufei's eyes were still resting on the door, and after a moment, they flicked to the window. Wufei smiled. He knew.

Treize smiled as well. Then movement over the canopy of the forest caught his eye, and he looked up to see a helicopter pulling up, over the clearing. The next few moments were blurred as grass, sticks, and leaves were hurled through the air. When it had settled enough to see, the helicopter had landed and three figures were rushing towards Wufei.


"Hey, Wufei!"

"Duo!" Duo was the first to reach the Chinese pilot, and he gave him a soft knock to the shoulder. "You found"

"Sure did, buddy," the other pilot said, looking over the bandages on Wufei's body as Trowa and Sally appeared with a stretcher, coughing.


"Sally!...Hello." Sally smiled as she rubbed dust from her eyes. She pushed Duo out of the way and bent to check the bandages. She lifted up Wufei's shirt enough to see clean white.

"How in the world did you manage to get these on by yourself?" She asked, patting the bandages lightly.

"The man who owns the cabin helped me," Wufei said. He grunted as Trowa put an arm behind his back and started to lift him. Duo supported Wufei's waist and upper thighs as Sally made sure that Wufei's bandaged leg was not jarred in any way.

"No kidding?" Duo asked. "Nice guy. Does he want a ride? We can-"

"No!" Wufei said, a bit quickly. Trowa and Duo each spared him a second's glance as they lowered him onto the stretcher. Wufei took a deep breath and tried again. "He...he'd rather be left alone, right now."

"Okay," Duo said, grinning. He waved to the cabin. "Hey, thanks for taking care of our buddy!" he yelled.


Treize couldn't hear Wufei or his friends over the pattern of the helicopter, but he could see a boy waving excitedly at the cabin, a silly grin plastered on his face. After a moment, the tallest figure--a woman that Treize almost recognized--stood, smiled, and waved at the cabin as well.

They were thanking him. Wufei hadn't told them who he was, and probably never would. It was just as well. He watched the third new figure, another boy, stand and wave once at the cabin. Then they all three leaned down and lifted the stretcher that was carrying Wufei.

Treize watched the trio load Wufei into the helicopter with the help of another vague figure, presumably another pilot. Then the woman, the first boy, and finally the second boy all jumped into the helicopter and closed the hatch behind them.

The helicopter lifted off almost immediately after that, and by the time the loose elements in the clearing had settled down again, Treize could just barely see the tail of the helicopter as it disappeared beyond the forest canopy.

Treize moved away from the window and went to lay on the couch with a sigh. His small adventure was over. Wufei was gone. He felt...empty. This had been the first time in so long that he had actually felt...human. He had laughed, played games, and talked about life. There hadn't been any strategies or double dealings. With Wufei, he was not the director of a tragic play. He was an active character in the drama of life.

Treize stood, making a decision. For the rest of his vacation, he would act exactly as he had when Wufei was here. He would play cards. A glance outside told him it should be sunny for a long time. That meant that the radio would be working, so he would listen to music. He would read. He would cook meals that he wanted to eat.

He smiled.

"Again...Thank you, Wufei."


"Bruised or broken rib..."

"I'll take a look at that when we get back on the ground," Sally said, looking at the scab that had formed over the cut by Wufei's ear.

"Cuts on my left forearm..."

"Saw those. Not bad. Give me just a minute and I'll re-wrap them. Hey!" She exclaimed, looking at a small sort of watermark on the bandages she had unwrapped from around Wufei's arm. "These are from the aid kit I gave you!"

"Hm?" Wufei raised an eyebrow. "Uhm...yeah."

"But...I thought you said the man at that cabin helped you with the bandages. Certainly you didn't lug that huge box all the way out there in that condition!" She laughed.

"No...I was keeping it there," Wufei said with a frown. Sally raised an eyebrow, but didn't question him further. Wufei sighed and continued. "The worst one is my leg."

"Hmm?" Sally hummed, spraying a salve on Wufei's arm. Wufei winced.

"Piece of shrapnel, umm...about that big," Wufei said, outlining a shape with his fingers. Sally looked up to see. She pursed her lips and frowned in sympathy.

"It's not still in-"

"No!...No, he pulled it out. And wrapped my leg. Twice." Sally smiled, trying to calm the distracted pilot.

"Well, he did a very good job. He wasn't trained to do this kind of stuff, I'm sure. Wish I had students like him. Is that it?"


"Okay, then. I'll leave the rib cage and your leg until we get somewhere stable, okay Wufei?"


"Great. I'll be back in a few minutes," she said, smiling and moving towards the front of the helicopter. "Oh! Hello, Trowa." She slid past the other pilot as he walked into the small area that had been set up for emergency medical care.

Wufei looked up from the stretcher he was still lying on. From this angle, he could see both of Trowa's eyes.

"How are you feeling?" Trowa remembered the last time he had asked such a question of the Chinese pilot. He remembered watching as Wufei refused to answer and let his Nataku sink deeper and deeper in to the sea as he replayed his duel with Treize Kushrenada.

Wufei sighed. "Quite well, considering." Trowa raised an eyebrow. "It was nice...getting a vacation, of sorts," Wufei added, a faint smile touching the corners of his lips. Trowa let the smile infect him, as well.

"Why was your aid kit at that cabin?"

Wufei watched as Trowa sat down next to him. "I found the cabin a while ago," he replied. "It looked deserted, so I used it as a sort of safe house." Trowa waited for him to go on. "It was the first place I thought of when I got injured at the Taurus factory. I guess I passed out when I got there. He found me in the doorway and took care of me."

Trowa sensed Wufei didn't want to talk about it anymore. "I understand." Wufei glanced up at him again.



"Could you teach me how to play chess?" Trowa blinked--the only sign that he might have been startled by this request.

"Sure thing," he said.


Almost midnight. Treize went outside to collect the chairs and pillow that Wufei had been using. He smiled at the night sky. He almost felt as if curtains were being lowered, marking the end of an act in a play, cutting him off from the lights out beyond the audience.

Now he would return to OZ as General Treize Kushrenada. They would all don their masks again, and play the cards they knew would be dealt. Was that the way the script went? Contemplate first and then act? Or did it matter what order things happened in? Real life was not planned and rehearsed.

As lost as he was in his thoughts, Treize gasped when he felt something smooth crumple slightly beneath his feet. He set the chairs down and squinted through the darkness to see what it was. He picked it up.

It was the book he had given to Wufei earlier. He hadn't even noticed him holding it on their way out into the clearing. He flipped the old book open and saw that a fresh blade of green grass had been used as a bookmark. He smiled and looked at the cover.

"A Midsummer Night's Dream."

"Very well, then, Wufei." Treize whispered. "Good luck. And good night. I'll be waiting."




The Cast, in order of appearance:

Chang Wufei: Gundam pilot 05, Nataku/Shen-Long

Treize Kushrenada: General of the OZ Organization

Duo Maxwell: Gundam pilot 02, Deathsythe

Sally Po: former Medical Aid Officer for the Federation

Trowa Barton: Gundam pilot 03, Heavyarms


Now that you've read this monstrosity, here's my little notes of explaination:

The first line is voiced by Treize, on the day that he tricked Heero into killing all of the Federation pacifists (epsiode seven). The first line of the third act is also Treize, though I can't remember which episode it is from.

For the bit where Wufei is talking about Meiran: I've seen little bits and pieces of Wufei's Episode Zero, but I've never read it. This is just what I've gathered from various other fics and discussions. If it's not the real deal, my sincere apologies.

I don't know whether or not Go-Mo-Ku is a real game, but it was a favorite of mine that my teacher taught us when I was in first and second grade--I was very lucky when I found my old gameboard, because the instructions were still attached. The gameboard is a ten-by-ten square. You may wish to follow along on a gameboard of your own, so that the idea makes more sense to you--the Penté game described will also fit on the Go-Mo-Ku board.

Penté is one of my current favorite games. The rules are as I explained them, although there is one more way to win--if, when "capturing" your opponent's stones, you manage to capture ten stones (five sets of two), you win. My gameboard (I've seen others in a variety of shapes) is a twenty-by-twenty square. Oh, also--when Treize is saying "It works in reverse," and Wufei acknowledges him, it simply means that both of them can use the rule to capture pieces. The conversation used there is very similar to the one between myself and a friend when I was teaching him how to play.

The red and blue stones: Just a little fun I was having with the colors. In traditional Japanese theatre--Kabuki--the actor playing the protagonist wears red make-up for justice and bravery, and the antagonist wears indigo.

"A Midsummer Night's Dream," is my favorite of all Shakespeare's plays. You decide how it fits into the story. In fact, I'd like to hear your opinions on the matter!


Thank you very much for reading! I hope you enjoyed it!