SUMMARY: In the eyes of the public, I'm an ideal leader; through the eyes of my fans, I'm a flawless singer; from the eyes of my friends, I'm an impeccable girlfriend. Yet, I can never be perfect in his eyes. (K x L)

MAIN PAIRINGs:Kira x Lacus (implied Kira x Fllay, Athrun x Lacus, KiraCaga, Asucaga, Shinn x Luna)

DISCLAIMER: This is a story based on characters and situations from Kidou Senshi Gundam Seed and Seed Destiny. I don't own it

WARNING: Text and all related materials are rated PG13/T and there is rather strong and coarse language and mild adult themes. So don't complain about offensive languages! XD Also, there are/might be some grammatical errors and typos, spelling mistakes, even after rereading it many times.

NOTE: The story contains pre-GSD and post GSD events, etc. It will mostly be focused on Kira and Lacus, and occasional appearances of Athrun and Cagalli. Disregards certain events in Special Editions and Upcoming Movie-

NOTE 2: This is sort of the sequel/companion fic of 'Let Go'. You don't have to read it to understand the events, but there will be some major spoilers. Read the dates carefully!!

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Imperfect

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To everyone, Kira and I seem to be the perfect couple. No fault, no conflicts, nothing. Yes, exactly, there is nothing. We understand each other, yes, we're content just to be with each other, but, neither asks for more. At least, I feel it is enough, it is fine just the way it is. However, I know, it would never be enough for him. His eyes are merely covered by a façade of determination. One little push, and he will crack, I just know it.
Always, someone would be on the back of his mind, haunting his thoughts constantly. He has never stopped hurting; he has never stopped feeling guilty. He has never stopped loving Fllay Allster
. -Lacus Clyne

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Chapter 1 – Endless Battle

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Lacus Clyne jolted up from the bed with a startled gasp. She looked around frantically, her stormy eyes searching for something in the darkness of the room. It was as if she could still hear the accusing tones of the terrorists; she could still picture blank stares directed at her and blood all over the floor when -

She shut her eyes hard, as if trying to keep away the horrible memories. Shivering in guilt, she hugged herself close. Her hand trembled lightly as she pressed it against her raging heart, willing it to calm down.

It was then she was uncomfortably conscious of her current state. Quickly, she dove under the covers, her tense posture relaxed considerably. The blanket felt exceptionally warm and it felt soothing against her naked skin.

Turning around carefully, Lacus stared at his sleeping form silently. He looked so peaceful that she was glad she didn't wake him.

His arm reached out sluggishly and hugged her closer to him protectively. She blushed at the contact, but soon she became accustomed to his warmth. She snuggled against him, wondering half-heartedly what their relationship really was.

Content to be in his arms, Lacus drifted off to dreamland once again, recalling certain events that led up to her current situation-


-C.E. 74, three weeks after the armistice-

"So you're going up to space," Kira Yamato asked evenly, his amethyst eyes unblinking.

"Yes," Lacus Clyne replied, staring into his eyes.

There was an uncomfortable silence. The tension felt strangely unnerving - this had never happened between them at all. Kira's eyes were stormy, but he said nothing.

The songtress of peace couldn't hold her gaze any longer. She looked away and whispered pleadingly, "You understand, don't you Kira? PLANT needs me right now. With all the confusion brought by the Messiah, they need stability right now. In fact, the world needs to be balanced. Cagalli-san is doing her best, so shall I."

"Nn, I understand," his voice was strangely mechanical, "I'm ready. I will fight and protect."

Lacus flinched involuntarily. She was reminded of the conversation they had after the first war had ended.

"Will you stay with me?" Kira Yamato whispered tentatively, his empty eyes stared at the pink-haired girl almost pleadingly. He looked so fragile and lost, as if irreversible damage had crashed on him.

And it did. She knew he was more than devastated, and she knew what she had to do, what she wanted to do.

"Of course, Kira. Let's enjoy the peace we all fought for...what everyone fought for," Lacus smiled kindly, and was happy when a small spark lighted Kira's mature and troubled face.

"Yes...the peace we fought for," his eyes darkened in pain, "fighting..."

Lacus closed her eyes wearily. "You don't have to fight again, Kira."

"It's too dangerous, Lacus. I can't let you go up alone."

She was touched by his concern, but this was Kira; he had a naturally gentle soul, forced to fight admist carnage and burdened with terrible guilt. The guilt of not being able to save her.

Was she selfish? Perhaps, but she wished for him to forgive himself. She wished for him to move on. She wanted him to protect her, but not because he didn't want to repeat the same mistakes again. She wanted him to open up to her.

Yes, Lacus Clyne wasn't who everybody thought to be, or who everyone wanted her to be. She wasn't this problem-less, goddess-like entity; she was only human. A human with her own feelings.

Like any other neutral civilians, she wanted to just live her life quietly with the man she grew dependent on. Despite what others may think, Kira was the real pillar of strength behind everything. He had never shed a tear since the first war; he grew so strong yet so distant that Lacus no longer knew what to do. Everytime he fought, everytime he took a person's life, more and more nightmares were added to his list. It hurt her to see him in torment.

Therefore, Lacus knew she must do this. She must help PLANTs without involving Kira anymore.

"Kira," she shook her head gently, "I'm going to be the mediator between PLANT and Earth. I'll be fine. You must stay here and," Lacus's eyes flickered, "help Cagalli-san."

Unlike during the second war, when she had to go up to Eternal, Kira didn't really argue with her.

His face was still passive. He closed his arms around her, pulling her into a tight embrace. Like always. It was as he was afraid to do something more than hugging...

Lacus leaned against his dependable shoulders and smiled lightly. This is enough for her. As long as he still cared...I'll just have to get used to not having him by my side.


- C.E. 75 - May, Terminal Headquarters -

"Lacus-sama, here's the document you've requested for."

Lacus nodded at the soldier, who saluted to her enthusiastically. Scanning the page quickly, Lacus sat down on the Commander's chair and immediately contacted Orb.

The blonde's princess's familiar face appeared on the screen.. Lacus smiled at her in greeting.

"Good afternoon, Cagalli. So you have agreed to the idea proposed by Chairman Spencer?"

"Yes, I've already made a list of the members of this patrol. Does this meet your approval?" Cagalli's voice was strong and firm, a true sign of an experienced politician.

She's been through much. Lacus thought. When her eyes fell upon the list of people who will accompany the Eternal, Lacus gasped softly. Glancing at the screen, she found Cagalli grinning back at her knowingly.

"Well? Surely Commander Yamato is a good choice?" Cagalli feigned confusion.

Lacus sighed, slightly embarassed, "Cagalli, you don't have to do this-"

"Do what?" Cagalli asked innocently, "He volunteered himself. I didn't tell him anything."

Seeing that Lacus still seemed indecisive, Cagalli's voice grew serious, "Look, Lacus. He misses you. He wants to be by your side, and I know you want to too. Don't let this chance slip by. Don't ... give up," her voice trailed off, her eyes growing sad.

Lacus knew exactly what Cagalli was talking about; the blonde chose her country over Athrun, period. Am I doing the same thing? Choosing Kira's peace over my own heart? What if Kira really wants to be with me?

"I really admire you, Cagalli-san," Lacus muttered. For many reasons...

"There's nothing to admire," Cagalli replied stiffly, "Anyways, I'll contact you again if anything happens."

When the transmission went off, Lacus slumped against the chair, her energy drained out of her. Not because of personal problems, but because of the public. She had to keep up her image but...it was really tiring sometimes. If only I'm more like Cagalli...at least I can punch something or scream...as long as it relieves my stress, Lacus mused, chuckling at an image of shocked citizens seeing her unusual behavior. Oh, I can't do it, as much as I want to. It's just...not me.

"Lacus-sama, here's the schedule for tomorrow, including the speech," Martin DaCosta approached the songstress and handed her a piece of paper.

Glancing at the ever-increasing stack of paper on her desk, Lacus accepted the schedule without complaint.

It's not me.

She was Lacus Clyne. She was not suppose to complain.


- C.E. 75 September, Flagship Eternal -

"Anything unsual, Captain Waldfeld?" Lacus floated into the bridge of the pink spaceship.

"Nope, not at all. Same with Archangel," the scarred-man smiled, nodding at the screen.

"Hello, Lacus-san," Murrue Ramius greeted her.

Even though Murrue and Mwu got married, they all still called her 'Captain Ramius' because, well, they were used to it. Mwu's face popped up besides his wife's, "Yo, pink princess," he grinned good-naturedly, "Athrun said he wants to talk to you. Personal message."

"Oh?" Lacus was mildly surprised, but she went back to her room nevertheless. Personal message?

When the blue-haired man appeared on the screen, Lacus couldn't help but gaze at him affectionately. Even after so many years and under so many circumstances, it didn't change the fact he was her ex-fiancee.

No matter what, Athrun will always hold a special spot in her heart. After all, he was the first man she liked. They had been prepared to get married, and they probably would learn to love each other too but things just didn't happen that way.

It was fine for them, though. They will always be good friends.

"How are you up there?"

When Lacus was about to reply that she was fine, Athrun cut her of quickly, "You know what I mean. How are you and Kira?"

Lacus smiled lightly, "He's fine, Athrun. Everyone looks up to him, and he's getting along with everyone really well. I think he's getting used to his rank now."

Athrun chuckled, "And he doesn't look strange in a ZAFT commander uniform?"

"No, I have to say it suits him," Lacus giggled. Indeed, she was more than shocked to see Kira in the uniform, but he seemed comfortable with it. "How's the patrol, Athrun?"

"Oh it was quite alright. Pretty uneventful, but that's exactly what we wanted. I assume Eternal didn't encounter anything?"

She shook her head, "Everything's fine, Athrun. I have to admit Chairman Spencer's Treaty is working very well, to have us patrol different areas with battleships from different allegiances, consisting of different armies. It should be able to bond different groups of people more."

Athrun nodded in agreement. As a very perceptive person, Lacus quickly noticed his rather melachony demeaner, "What's the matter, Athrun? Is something troubling you."

He hesitated, but since Lacus was always good at, well, counselling people...

"Well, Cagalli and I kind of had another fight. I-I don't know what I'm supposed to do and I just thought you can maybe-," Athrun paused, turning around in confusion at people yelling in the background. "Sorry, Lacus, I have to go. Something's come up."

Lacus stared at the now blank screen worriedly. Was there some way she could help? Cagalli 'helped' her, so she should return the favor as well. But how? She didn't really want to let Athrun down.

She met Kira on her way to the bridge. Kira smiled at her in greeting and she couldn't help but blush lightly. The way he smiled these days was so much brighter than before. Perhaps...

She recalled the time they'd reunited. She had ran and hugged him impulsively, and was happy that he had returned it. Now, a few months since that day, will they finally be okay...?

When the two arrived at the bridge, Waldfeld stood up immediately, his expression grave.

"A message from Cagalli. It's urgent."

Lacus licked her dry lips, alarmed. Cagalli never sent urgent messages unless -

The Representative of Orb appeared on the screen, her eyebrows furrowed in suppressed anger. Several colonels and emirs were walking around in the background, shouting orders.

"There has been an attack, on Minerva...it was a planned ambush."

Lacus covered her mouth to stifle a startled gasp. Like Archangel and Eternal, Minerva was assigned to patrol certain areas. None of them expected something like this happen again. Why, why must people continue to fight? Was peace really not enough? Even despite all those sacrifices, all their efforts, people still demand war...why?

"Where-?"

"Berlin. However, the ambush consisted of mobile suits from all allegiances," Cagalli's expression darkened, "like us. There was even electromagnetic inteference to prevent us from recognizing friends and foes. We shall send you a detailed report after Captain Joule has fully rested. The battleship is currently under repair at Morgenroete"

"Is everyone alright?" Lacus swallowed hard. She could already guess the answer...

Cagalli grimaced and looked away, "Only half of the soldiers survived, and we also lost Major Hawke..."

Lacus distinctively remembered the friendly girl Meyrin, and her older sister. She had become pretty good friends with Meyrin...she couldn't even imagine how the sweet girl can recover from her sister's-

Dropping her eyes, Lacus stared at the floor, willing herself not to think anymore.

Kira was expressionless, but his lips were set in a grim line. His bright amethyst eyes darkened considerably. His fists clenched and he whispered something, almost to himself, but Lacus heard him.

Fllay...I'll continue to fight...

Lacus closed her eyes in defeat. Kira's soul will never rest completely, as long as fighting and death continued to haunt him and remind him of the lives he failed to save.

Especially the life of the girl he first loved.

...whatever it takes...as long as I don't fail again...

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End of Chapter 1

A/N: Well, Kira and Lacus...while they don't make me go all crazy like Asucaga, I still like this pairing. At first, in GS, I wasn't convinced about their relationship. As much as I...dislike it, I felt Kira and Fllay had something more than Kira and Lacus. However, in GSD, the only good thing was that I'm totally convinced of Kira and Lacus. It seemed so easy for them to communicate with each other, to support each other, something Athrun and Cagalli can no longer do. Yet, KxL are still at a level that they only hug each other (kiss already damn it.) Not to mention, I can't help but feel that Kilax is too 'perfect' a couple, hence the arrival of this fic.

Therefore, please don't flame about the 'still-love Fllay' part. I despise bashing characters. Oh, yes, both Lacus and Kira will have very, um, complicated feelings here. The chapter's title refers to both of their endless battles, with themselves.

A tedious chapter, but this is only to get things started :) Big things shall come up in the future :) The first part of this chapter happens later. Don't worry, the confusion will clear up :)

Notes:

Captain Joule, Lieutenant Elthman, Major Hahnenfuss and Major Hawke were stationed on Minerva

Captain Ramius, Admiral Zala and Colonel La Flaga were stationed on Archangel

Chairman Spencer's Treaty: To ensure the state of peace and strengthen the bonds of different people by working together. Minerva was assigned to patrol certain areas on Earth, including Berlin. Archangel was assigned to patrol other areas on Earth. Eternal patrol the areas in space with a bit of help from the Junk Guild and Rhondo Mina.

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Athyra