Disclaimer – I do not own the Gundam Wing characters.
Questions and Photos
Relena bursts into his dressing room, nostrils flaring and eyes ablaze. After slamming shut the door, she stomps toward his couch, which she flops on top of. Her eyes scan the room adorned with photos of all the best circus performers: Liona, the flying trapezes legend; Manoa, the best fire breather of all time; Joloa, the knives juggler extraordinaire; and many more. Her eyes pass listlessly over the entire collection until she's seen them all. Then, with a slight linger on Asheroa the tumbler; she bends her gaze to him. "Trowa."
His chin brushes his shoulder as his face turns to her. The tiniest splash interest gleams in his eyes.
Drops of amusement mingle with the interest, but he turns away before she can see it. His eyes focus once more on his reflected face, and he resumes removing his makeup.
She waits patiently for him to prod her with why? He waits passively for her to continue without his prodding. Eventually, she goes on. "Finished with my duties for the day, I'd gone back to my hotel room. Naturally I was tired and wanted nothing more than to shower, change into something pleasant, and work on a new proposal I'd been thinking of. So I did. Shower and change, that is. I was unable to do any work, and why do you suppose that is?"
Trowa, remaining silent, stands and walks behind his changing board.
"Because," Relena says, raising her voice in case the board should somehow choke out her voice. "He showed up." He is the term Relena uses in reference to the pilot of Gundam Wing, whenever he angers her. Without waiting for Trowa to ask why the arrival of He should restrain her from writing her proposal, she continues. "He'd brought me a hair brush this time and was dressed in the uniform of the hotel's staff. I was a little surprised. Only a little. You see, I'm now accustomed to him showing up like that, out of thin air."
Trowa walks out from behind his changing board, clad in one of the many sets of blue jeans and dark blue turtle necks he owns. Striding to his dressing table, he takes hold of the stool before it. He positions the stool five feet away from Relena before sitting on it.
Still speaking, Relena sits up and leans toward Trowa. Her hands press against the suede material of the couch that is dyed a color similar to her eyes. "You know how it is with us. He gives me a gift, I ask him the question, and he jumps out the window without answering it." She clasps her hands and smiles funnily down at them. "I wanted things to be different this time, so as soon as I had the brush in my hands, guess what I did?" Trowa doesn't. "I threw it right at his face." She chuckles. "I didn't know I'd done it till I heard the brush clattering on the floor." Her smile tightens. "He didn't even blink. Just picked the brush up and held it out to me again and stood there. Eyes on me…waiting. But I didn't take the brush." She shakes her head and glances up at Trowa. "Instead, I stared right back at him. Then, after a while, I asked him the question." She pauses and clenches her hands. Her smile falters.
"He didn't want to answer…to say it." Her voice fades and she looks up at the photos on the wall. Her smile returns. "All those people are the best to ever be in any circus." Her eyes drift to the clown. "Trowa, when are you going to hang your picture?"
"There's no reason to."
She nods. Her eyes flit back to the photos. "You never did tell me why you hung up all these pictures."
She chuckles. "You and Heero are the same that way. You both like to leave a question hanging." She stands, turns her back to him, and strolls up to a photo. "I made him answer that question today though."
"Part of me wishes I hadn't." Her gaze is not on the photo. "But part of me is glad I did." She turns, and tears are in her eyes. "Trowa…he won't kill me. Heero won't…" Her voice croaks as words and a sob try to come out at once.
He moves slowly forward, approaching Relena, his feet following the path laid out by fate so many months ago; when she'd first come to see him perform; when she'd first entered his dressing room; when she'd first sat on the couch colored the same hue of her eyes. One day, he couldn't remember why, she told him a little about her relationship with Heero. Another day, she told him more. Then, before either of them was aware of it, she was bursting into his dressing room, time and time again, with news of her latest encounter with Heero. She would smile as she spoke, and his eyes would laugh. Yet, both could feel the disaster that lingered after Heero jumped out the window and Relena put her newest gift away.
"Relena." Stopping before her, Trowa says, "You're going to be alright."
She laughs and sobs again. "Of course, I'm going to be alright."
He wraps his arms around her. She presses her forehead against his chest. They stand for several minutes. Relena softly crying. Trowa cradling her in his arms.
"It's so silly of me to be crying," she says after awhile. "I knew that he wouldn't, but I had hoped…" Her voice fades, as it always does when she is sad or thoughtful, and the last traces of it echo in his ears. I had hoped. His arms squeeze her tighter, pressing her body firmly against his. I had hoped.
He had hoped; every time he went out to perform with the spotlight glaring on him, eyes glued to him, and adrenaline pumping through him. He had hoped that the makeup and cheers would transform the anonymity within him. Yet every time he performed, nothing changed.
Then one day he started to hope to transform his anonymity through conversations and gentle glances. He had hoped two tender hands would raise his photo to the wall.
"Relena, I'll kill you."
She gasps. Her arms snake around him. "Oh, Trowa." The tears started again. "I'm sorry."
He buries his face in her hair. "It's okay." A tear skims down his cheek, and he sighs. "It's okay."