Chapter Eight

"So why Tein?" Miriallia asked, her voice echoing around the empty warehouse. Julian's men had moved out to intercept the group of people moving in on them, but Julian had remained behind to keep an eye on their prisoner and so he'd have time to make an escape if need be.


"Tein. You changed your last name from Bain to Tein. Why did you pick that last name?" Miriallia repeated. She really didn't care about the answer, but she wanted to try and cover up the faint sound of gunfire that was coming from outside. Plus, she wanted to get as much information on his kidnapper as possible just in case she did get free from him and found her way back to Athrun and Cagalli.

"Tein was the name of my commander at Panama," Julian grinned sickly. "That's where I lost my leg."

"So I've heard," Miriallia said indifferently. Unseen to Julian's dark eyes, Miriallia was slowly wiggling her hands out of the ropes that bound her hands behind her back. She was getting an incredible rope burn in the process but she had almost gotten one of her hands free.

"One of ZAFT's missiles hit the ground not far from where I was standing," Julian went on, too involved in his story to realise she was merely asking him as a distraction. "Commander Tein risked his life to drag me out of the firing zone and then he ordered two men in our company to take me to the medics. I was on the last evacuation ships to get out of Panama before those ZAFT bastards murder everyone, including the rest of my company and Commander Tein. That's why I'm doing all this. I'm continuing to fight in their name so those space monsters never set foot on Earth again. Those deserve to rot in space so that my fallen comrades can have the peace they deserve."

"I'm sure they'll be thrilled," Miriallia spat, her hand just millimetres from being free. "I bet most of those men in your company were fighting for peace and now that we have it you're continuing the conflict which means that they died for nothing."

"Perhaps, but it's hardly fair that their enemies are able to have a peaceful life on Earth while they're gone, now is it?"

"There's nothing fair about war. Was it fair for me to watch Tolle and the rest of my friends vanish in front of my very eyes? Was it fair that good people who really had no desire to fight were forced into battle, and even into death?" Miriallia asked, thinking of Tolle and everything Dearka had told her about Nicol. It wasn't fair that either of them were gone, but that couldn't be help in war. War itself was meaningless so there were bound to be countless meaningless deaths within it.

"No it's not, but asking those questions doesn't solve anything. The only way we can really have peace is if we disown ourselves from the Coordinator race completely."

"And yet it's a fellow Natural that you've got tied to a chair here," Miriallia pointed out coldly. Julian grinned wickedly at her words and moved over again so his face was inches from her own.

"You're not a fellow Natural," he leered. "You're a disgusting wench who is a mockery for everything we have fought and died for. Your very existence is a disgrace against our kind and the future we should be aiming for."

"Funny, that's exactly what I think of you," Miriallia snarled before literally spitting in his face. Julian's ghastly grin faded and he stood up to full height before wiping his face clean.

"You go too far, girl," he snarled, raising his hand to slap her across the face, but before he even begun to lower his blow a deafening bang sounded as a bullet whizzed through the air. Whoever had fired that shot must have had exceptional good luck or extraordinary precise aim, because the bullet managed to rip right through the very centre of Julian's palm. Screaming in agonising pain, Julian clutched his bleeding hand to his chest, too shocked to even make a grab for his own gun. Then a second bullet ripped through the air, this time hitting Julian in the knee of his good leg that instantly folded under itself and sent Julian crashing to the ground.

Miriallia sat frozen in her chair, too horrified to even look away. She had never seen anything as ghastly in all her life as she watched Julian shutter on the ground, a red pool of his own blood growing around him. The clinking of someone calmly reloading a gun reached her ears and finally she was able to tear her eyes away from the bloody sight in front of her. As she looked over her shoulder into the shadows from where the sound had come from, her heart soared and her stomach dropped simultaneously.

Dearka was there, coolly reloading his rife but there was something about his face and his tranquil actions that chilled Miriallia's blood. She had never seen him so cold before. During the war, she had seen him go into 'soldier mood' before where he would stop at nothing to reach his goal and become completely removed from his own emotions so he was almost untouchable. However now he was at a level of that she had never seen and it scared her to see the man she loved like that. That was not the Dearka she knew.

Dearka finish reloading his gun and then carefully took aim again before firing, this time hitting Julian in the hip. The older man screamed painfully as Dearka casually made his way over to where his enemy was slowly bleeding to death. His amethyst eyes were as hard as ice and there was absolutely no emotion registering on his face.

"You know, I've heard that one of the best places to shot a man if you want him to have a painful and drawn out death is directly in the throat (1)," Dearka said in an chillingly indifferent tone as he cocked is gun. "It's not enough to kill a man right off, but the victim slowly suffocates as air leaks out of the bullet hole. So if the blood loss doesn't kill you the lack of oxygen will and there's no way you can call out for help."

"If you kill me . . . you'll prove that I'm right. You're nothing more than a cold hearted monster," Julian pointed out from his place on the ground. Dearka regarded him coldly, then raised his rife and took aim at Julian's throat.

"As long as I know you've suffered, I don't care," Dearka told him, toying with the trigger. All he had to do was squeeze and that bastard would be dead after several painful minutes. God knows how much Dearka had dreamed of doing this ever since Miriallia was attacked. He just wanted this asshole dead and he didn't care what the consequences might be. Julian Tien needed to be punished for his actions and Dearka wouldn't settle for anyone else's hand but his own.

Dearka readied himself to fire, but then something warm and soft cupped over his trigger hand. Breaking out of his trance slightly, Dearka was shocked to see his Miriallia standing alongside him. While Dearka and Julian's attention had been entirely on each other, Miriallia had managed to slip one of her hands free from her ties and wasted no time removing the others. Careful so as not to make any sudden moves, she had slowly approach Dearka while he was focusing on his shot and gently reached out to stop him. Dearka's amethyst eyes widened but they seemed more confused than alarmed.

Smiling softly, Miriallia reached over to cup his cheek with her other hand and Dearka quickly warmed to the touch. Unconsciously, he lowered his rifle and loosened his hold on the trigger. Her eyes swelling with tears, Miriallia slowly stepped closer to him and she could see his cold exterior start to waver.

"No more killing," she whispered gently and Dearka faintly nodded, his eyes becoming softer. Killing in the name of vengeance only lead to more killing and neither of them want to see that any more. Like the warmth of the sun on ice, Miriallia's presence thawed Dearka's cold demeanor, reminding of the man he was. With a clatter, Dearka let his rifle drop to the ground and Miriallia threw herself into his embrace, her face buried in his chest as her tears finally spilled over. As the warmth of her tiny form seeped into him, Dearka melted into her embrace, bowing his head so he was completely engulfing her with his body. He had missed the way her body fitted so perfectly next to his more than he could put into words so he simply held onto her tightly and the rest of the world seemed to disappear.

"Dearka!" Athrun's slightly panicked voice called as he and Yzak bolted into the warehouse. Both Coordinators stopped short at the sight of Julian lying on the floor in his own blood but they where even more taken back by how vulnerable their comrade looked as he tightly hugged the most important thing in the universe to him.

"I'm so sorry," Dearka whispered in Miriallia's ear, his voice almost overwhelmed with emotion.

"Shh. It's okay," Miriallia cooed, stroking his blonde hair. Tomorrow after she had gotten some rest she would read him the right act and make him splurge on an expensive dinner date as penance for abandoning her, but she just didn't have the energy to care about that at the moment. All the mattered was that he was back. Miriallia pulled back slightly so she could look at his face, but she kept her body firmly pressed against his. "Just don't ever leave me again for whatever the reason. Okay?"

Dearka was too choked up to answer, so he simply nodded, his eyes lost in the way her turquoise ones glowed. Miriallia beamed at him, before standing on his tippy toes in order for her to press her lips against him. Dearka quickly responded to her affection, lifting her up in his arms to get better access and he shuttered in delight as her slender arms wrapped around his neck. He loved her, and he was never going to leave her again.

"Well, Julian and the rest of the men that got shot have been sent to the hospital for medical treatment. They'll be kept under a constant police watch until they can be properly incarcerated," Athrun explained to Yzak as they were finishing up at the warehouse. "The two men that belong to us have also been taken to the hospital and should be fine."

"You do know they've no doubt got other members still out there," Yzak said as the two former comrades made their way over to the vans that were standing by to take them back to Cagalli's palace. "Other sympathisers to their cause."

"I know which is exactly why we're going to have to question Julian and all of his men that we picked up tonight. We can't let something like this happen again," Athrun said, opening the back door to the van he and Yzak were travelling in and climbed inside. Yzak slammed the door shut and then driver instantly started the engine and took off, but none of that disturbed the other two occupants in the back.

Upon being rescued, Miriallia refused to go to the hospital, choosing rather to return to Cagalli's place to seek medical treatment to her small wounds there. The small Natural was currently asleep on the back seat in the warm embrace of Dearka who had also drifted off shortly after her.

And even in his sleep he refused to let her go.


(1) There was a man in the Bourne Identity that killed people that way

Wooh! My first Gundam Seed fic finished! I wrote this at a gallop right after I finsihed watching the series since I just had to put my own spin on my two favourite characters. I just love how they're so opposite and yet are still attracted to one another.

Not exactly your cliché knight-in-shining-armour routine since it's Milly who saves Dearka from doing something stupid, but I hope it works just the same. And to Jays Arravan, I tried to fit in Milly slapping Dearka for leaving her, but there so no place to stick it in since I always pictured it as the two of them being so happy to be together to be anger. But I'll give you free reign to imagine her beating the living day lights out of him once the sweetness of the reunion wares off.

Anyways, thanx for reading. I hope you liked it and maybe I'll catch you on a later date. See ya!

Cheers, tears-in-rain