Disclaimer: Ken DiFalco is from Solid Shark's Birds of a Feather/ Cry of the Falcon and is being used with permission. Richard Yamato Chung, his team, the Primus and Secundus Mobilesuits plus weapons/ equipment and the Equatorial Union Civil War setting are of Ominae's Rebellion also being used with permission. Gundam Seed belongs to Bandai Animation.

A/N: Hey there, basically, this is sidestory for Solid Shark's Birds of a feather/ Cry of the Falcon and Ominae's Rebellion. This is essentially my first attempt at making a fanfic of a fanfic, so if there's anything I did wrong, please let me know.

Also, I'd like to thank Solid and Ominae for letting me use their stuff. I like to also thank Goose, his "Beware the left eye" fic inspired me to make this fic. Hope you like this, guys.

With everything to lose

By the Watchman

Point One: Left with little choice

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Sembawang, Singapore, Equatorial Union

The sky was grey, constantly threatening to rain, though sun occasionally peaks through the clouds occasionally. Wind coming from the Johore straight pushed inland, making the city cold.

A unit of five ZGMF-1017 GINNs, three TFA-2 ZuOOTs and one ZGMF-515 CGUE were hidden among the buildings on the northern part of the city. They were who had volunteered to assist the Equatorial Union Reformed Military in ousting the OMNI-Enforcer backing Chua government.

It has been only several months since the start of the civil war but the EURM was gaining more ground than the Chua government and OMNI can ever hope to recover. Now, they were making preparations for a possible full-scale attack at the surviving loyalist and OMNI forces in Singapore to push them out of the island once and for all. After that, it would be the turn of the Johore-Singapore causeway bridge to fall.

The ZAFT volunteers had been assigned to this location several hours ago, rotating with another unit which sent to the Woodlands. This area had been an active battle zone since the attempted OMNI invasion of Pasir Ris which had recently been the EURM's base of operations.

Intel from base had informed the volunteers that a small unit of loyalist forces was the in area. They lie and wait for the said unit to come.

"C'mon, commander," one of the pilots, Shinn Asuka mutters. "Let's just search around get this over with. There's nothing out here."

"Quiet down," The unit commander in the Cgue snaps, fed up by his constant whining. "If you really want to go back to base, you can go back by yourself. Our orders are to hold this area, remember? If a kid like you can't follow something that simple, you won't last long in ZAFT."

Shinn was about to give him a piece of his mind, when two other ginn pilots, Lunamaria Hawke and Rey Za Burrel, stop him.

"Shinn," Lunamaria says with a stern tone. "Let it go."

"He has a point, Shinn." Rey says a little more diplomatically, "We have orders to hold this position."

Shinn grit his teeth, but he nods. "Right… Sorry…"

"Cut the chatter," the commander calls out. "Maintain radio silence."

Oh blow off, asshole. Shinn thought.

One of the other ginn pilots calls out, "Sir I'm picking up something!"

Not far from their position, a unit of loyalist EUMS-01 Primuses, GAT-01 Strike Daggers and GAT/A-01E2 Buster Daggers were slowly trudging their way through, clueless to entrenched enemy mobilesuits ahead. The ZAFT units had the latest jamming systems and their sensors were an older model, they didn't know they were there.

The loyalists had the advantage of numbers and beam weapons on their side, but they lacked the rigorous training and experience of the ZAFT volunteers.

The loyalist force walks past them and the buildings they hid in.

Shinn lets the first three mobilesuits pass, his breathing began to climb. When the fourth one showed its face, Shinn sticks his machinegun on the side of the cockpit and pulls the trigger.

They others also pounce, Lunamaria fires her Barrus heavy particle gun, wiping out the two lead Primuses. Rey fires his Pardus' missiles and machine at the same time. The ZuOOTs, hidden in different positions, fire their machineguns, unable to use their heavy guns in such close quarters.

Despite that, the skirmish quickly swings to the ZAFT volunteers' favor, in first minutes of the exchange all of the Buster daggers were taken out. The surviving Strike Daggers and Primuses scramble to hide behind buildings they could get to, not bothering to fire back, all the ZAFT pilots had to do was keep a finger on the trigger. They didn't even have to use evasive maneuvers.

"We spent the last few hours waiting for these schmucks?" One pilot snorts, "I think we should've done what the Asuka kid said, we should've just swept the area and got it over with."

Shinn meanwhile, had abandoned his machinegun and pulls out his MA-M3 heavy sword. He charges at two hapless Strike Daggers. He thrusts his blade through the cockpit of one, and then rips it out on one side. He repeatedly hacks the other to pieces.

He would've fallen victim to one Primus' back attack with its FERFRANS 60 mm ML-1 beam rifle if it weren't for Lunamaria who blows it away.

"Shinn!" She yells angrily, "Watch what your doing why won't you?-! You're going to get yourself killed if you keep this up!"

"Yeah, yeah," He mutters as goes at another Strike Dagger. "Just watch my back."

Lunamaria makes a face as she watches him plow through the enemy, "I can't believe that guy…"

"King Six! King Six!"

One of the unit's sub officers yells at his radio as his Primus hides from the withering fire. The head officer had been killed at the beginning of the ambush, command of the unit was now unfortunately up to him "This is Charlie Two, we're being pinned down in 37 Alpha-Foxtrot, requesting immediate back up ASAP! Repeat, requesting immediate back-up!"

The officer repeats the message several times until he gets a response.

"Charlie Two, this King Six, back up is on route. Sandman will be with you shortly."

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Somewhere in the Johore Straight

A V/STOL transport carrier lifts off an OMNI-Enforcer Spengler-class Mobilesuit carrier, its destination was the battle in Sembawang. It cargo, one GAT-02L2 Dagger L, it was armed with an AQM/E-X02 Sword Striker. The Dagger L didn't look special, it was no different to the countless others like it. But what made it special was its pilot, it was an Earth Alliance ace who made his name during the battle of Porta Panama.

Inside the cockpit, the pilot's brown eyes stare blankly at the back of his helmet, reflecting on what he was about to get him self into. Considering the possibility, he may die in this battle, just like he did in the last battle and the one before it.

He sighs, running one hand through his short ash brown hair, quickly brushing off such thoughts, because he was a professional and he had a job to do.

He puts on his helmet.

"Fat One, this is Sandman, I'm good to go."

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My name is Leon Gaiman, I was born in the Philippines in the Equatorial Union in 40CE. My mother was from the Union while father was from Atlantic Federation.

Unlike my father, I never really had any prejudice against coordinators… I didn't really saw the point. They're smarter and healthier than us naturals, diseases weren't a serious issue for them and heck, they're better looking than us.

But isn't what all our parents want their kids to be, the best among our peers?

Eh, forget it… Anyway, I fought in the battle for Panama, I was in a Strike Dagger back then. Before the Gungnir went off, I managed to make a grand total of twenty mobilesuit kills, a first among naturals. That was enough for me to be declared an ace, they called me the Panamanian Cobra. But I'm better known for the name I earned as an operative in the Atlantic Federation Rangers.

The Sandman, the man always puts his targets to sleep.

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Sembawang, Singapore, Equatorial Union

It doesn't take long for the V/STOL transport to reach the city, it doesn't take long for it to attract enemy fire either. Several rounds strike the plane's underbelly.

"It's too dangerous to make a dust-off," The transport pilot informs the Dagger L pilot. "You'll have to jump off."

"Copy," Leon replies without complaint. As he gets his unit ready to jump, he look down below, what he sees doesn't make him feel any better.

Charlie Two was almost annihilated, it was reduced to little more than six mobilesuits out twenty two. He couldn't tell how many hostiles there were from his position.

Just then, the transport suddenly jolts, almost making the Dagger L lose its balance.

"We're hit!" The pilot yells, "Bail out! We're going down!"

"Gotcha," Lunamaria watches at the transport she hit go down. She smiles satisfyingly. She then spots Leon's unit as it jumps off.

"Commander," She reports to her current superior. "We have another one who just came in, it's just one Dagger L though."

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Though I fight on the side of OMNI-Enforcer, I never once believed we were fighting for a just cause. Not even during the opening day of the war.

That's thanks to Blue Cosmos, when they ruined my life and my daughter's during Copernicus when they bombed the UN council.

They also took away my daughter's mother, my wife. She was an interpreter for the General assembly, she knew at least seven languages along with multiple dialects.

I lost all respect for President Copeland's administration, who laid the blame for the tragedy to coordinators even though it there was evidence that it was actually Blue Cosmos' handiwork. Later, that evidence will mysteriously disappear in the FBI's archives.

Six days later, war was declared, and three days after that, the biggest atrocity to human life occurs, Bloody Valentine.

Being a former Green Beret and a member of the reserves, I was immediately called back into service. I would have deserted by leaving the country, but President Chua was cooperating with the Atlantic Federation, arresting any deserters that enter the country.

I had no choice, I left my daughter, Kari, in the care of a relative and went to report back for duty.

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"Typical,"

Leon sighs as he uses his unit's verniers to slow his fall. As he lands on top of a building, it finally starts to rain.

No sooner his Dagger L's feet land on something solid, a Ginn start firing at him his Barrus heavy particle cannon.

"Real typical," he mutters as he jumps off the building, he fires his Panzer Eisen rocket anchor at a water tower, attaching itself firmly. He uses to swing around and slow his fall, knowing he would be an easy target if he used his verniers.

Below, Leon spots a ZuOOT firing its machineguns at a target. He pulls his Schwert Gewehr anti-ship and points it downwards, as his anchor's line reaches its limit, he makes it detach.

The blade pierces right through the ZuOOT as he crashes down onto him, he then rips it up through the front. He jumps a little distance away before the ZuOOT explodes.

"We lost Danvers!" Lunamaria calls to the others. After seeing that stunt, she stares at the enemy with disbelief.

A hundred meters away, Shinn turns around to her direction. "What?-! How's that possible?-!"

His companion, Rey, didn't seem undaunted. "We better take that guy before he makes some damage."

"Right," Shinn follows eagerly, arming himself with his machinegun.

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Before Panama, I serve largely as a commando in the South African Union, a puppet state of the Atlantic Federation. They didn't have any real strength to contribute to OMNI-Enforcer aside from their Victoria massdriver. The military was a joke, even the basic infantry was poorly trained and equipped.

They couldn't keep the local guerillas in check without the help of Atlantic Federation soldiers and Blue Cosmos' funding. If I wasn't going in infiltration operations in the African Community, I was in the SAU assassinating rebel leaders and militants. I slit throats, planted bombs in homes or cars, sometimes I even used poison. And these acts of murder could occur in an isolated house out in the countryside or in a busy street in downtown Johannesburg. And it didn't matter if it was the son of the president, I was literally sent killed anyone, anytime and anyplace.

What would Kari say when she finds out what her father did for a living?

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"Die racist!"

A Ginn attacks the Dagger L with its machine whilst charging toward it. Leon runs diagonally toward him, using his arms and anti-ship sword to protect cockpit as he went in. When they were in close range, the ginn pulls out its heavy sword and swings.

The Dagger L crouches down to avoid the attack, he then tackles it as he stood back up, he then pulls out his ES04B beam saber and cuts the Ginn in half from the left shoulder to right hip. Leon jumps back before it explodes.

He immediately goes for another target. This time, it was a Ginn guarding ZuOOT, before them were firing at him. The Dagger L stows away its saber and hold the Schwert Gewehr with both hands. He charges toward them.

Running from side to side, evades most of the bullets. As he got closer, the ZuOOT pilot panics and plans to fire his twin dual heavy canons. As he does this, Leon suddenly lets go us his sword and tackles the ginn with both arms, he then throws the Ginn at the ZuOOT. When the canons went off, both units explode.

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I tried hard to see a silver lining in what I was doing, but I'd be lying to myself to say no one was hurt by one of my misdeeds. I was murderer, a killer for a bigoted organization. I was nothing but a dog.

In a way, the Atlantic Federation itself was a puppet state, and its puppet master was Blue Cosmos.

My guilt grew and sanity dwindled as the atrocities added up, Cyclops traps in Endymion and Alaska, the indiscriminate nuclear attacks in Orb, Victoria and Boaz.

"The death of one man is a tragedy. The death of millions is a statistic." Joseph Stalin said that one. Boy does it ring true.

I never found that elusive silver lining.

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"Damn you…!"

Lunamaria gets into position to fire her Barrus at him.

Leon gets out of the way in time, he uses his rocket anchor to pick up his sword and runs toward the building for cover

"Charlie Two," he calls the surviving members of the squad. "Grab any survivors and get of here, I'll hold 'em back as long as I can."

"Copy Sandman," The Primuses and Strike Dagger remaining began to move, picking up wounded comrades as they went. "We owe you one for this."

"Buy me a beer after this is done," Leon replies with a smirk. "Then we'll call it even."

After they had left, he checks around the corner the building to see where the ginn with the Barrus was.

Lunamaria fires another one when she sees the Dagger L's head stick out. Leon quickly ducks back.

He stays behind the building to weight his options, along with checking his scanners. They told him there was at least one ZuOOT left, had to take those out, along with that Ginn what the Barrus that shot him down. If another V/STOL dusted those in Charlie Two off, it was a sitting duck for their fire.

He places his anti-ship sword back on its rack, and pulls out both his beam sabers. The Dagger L jumps out of cover and runs toward Lunamaria, side jumping the hostile fire.

The young ZAFT academy trainee yells as she watches the Dagger L as it was about to skewer her ginn with both sabers.

"Luna!" Shinn tackles Leon's suit to one side, the ZAFT trainee from Orb then was about to plant his heavy sword as it lay on the ground.

"Take this!"

However, Leon was quickly to recover, and swings one saber horizontally, slashing away the ginn's head and arms effectively making it defenseless. He then kicks the remains of the suit away.

"Shinn!" Lunamaria aims her Barrus at the Dagger L but Leon cuts off the barrel with one saber and thrust the other through the ginn's head. As a final insult, Leon cuts the ginn's legs.

After they were dealt with, Leon checks his scanners, wondering where the hell that last ZuOOT was. He doesn't have to look too long.

Machinegun fire strikes the side of his machine, he uses the rocket anchor launcher as a shield. When he looks at that the direction, he sees the last ZuOOT, along with the last ginn and the cgue.

"They're making this easy…" He comments as he goes at them.

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I was caricature of myself near the end of the war, I took in lot of stuff I would never take before. I lost all the discipline and self-respect I had coming into the conflict.

I hated the Earth Alliance, Blue Cosmos and its leaders who use got so many kill for their nonsensical ideals.

"For the Preservation of a pure and blue world"

Bullshit.

But most of all, I hated myself. I came to feel that my daughter didn't need me, the money I had saved was more than enough to pay for her education until college. And my relatives could take care of her pretty damn well. So I made arrangements, getting things in place, so as Kari can live without me.

After that, I made a resolve, the next time I was going to take out my mobilesuit, I was going to get myself killed. Hoping it would be someone from the True ZAFT faction.

This was just a week before the 2nd Battle of Jachin Due.

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In the distance,

Another EURM unit was moving into the area. This one was composed largely of six EUMS-02 Secundus, the successor to the Primus. They were supported by five EURM Primuses.

"Where the heck is that ZAFT volunteer unit?" Hamid Abbas mutters, looking around the surrounding area. The rain was getting worse, visibility was also getting worse by the minute.

"They're supposed to be just around here right?"

The unit leader and Hamid's friend Richard Yamato Chung, or Rick as he was known to friends and family, was a little unsure himself. "They're supposed to be here…"

"Maybe they met loyalist forces," Tim Wallace suggests, "And got wiped out."

"Don't say that," Rick gives Tim's Secundus a fixed stare. "Those went to all the trouble fighting with us and or cause, don't talk like they're just pawns."

"Hey, hey," Tim holds up his hands inside his cockpit. "Easy, Tiger, I said 'maybe' didn't I? Don't be so touchy."

Ricks sighs, "Yeah, sorry Tim."

"It's alright," he then grins. "It's because of that Hawke girl isn't it?"

Hamid and the other Secundus pilots, Avir Olmert, Davan Sahril and Luis Mendez all also grinned. They were all Rick's buddies and all knew he had something in him that attracted women, whether he liked it or not.

"No, it's not just because of Lunamaria." Rick scowls, "I'm also worried for Shinn, he gets reckless when things aren't going his way."

"Guys," Davan calls to the others. "I'm picking up something… It's the volunteer group, they're just over a hundred yards from us, looks like they're getting hammered!"

Rick instantly goes into a commander's mindset, "Move out, extended line formation. I'll scout ahead, get ready to flank them on the side if we need to."

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I was part of a strike force supporting the attack on Jachin Due. The things that happened there, I would never believed it if I never saw it firsthand.

First, the sheer scale of the battle, it was huge!

This wasn't battle of several dozen mobilesuits and a couple of ships, the numbers reached to the hundreds if not thousands. The line of battle stretched for miles.

Next were the attempts of mass-genocide also happened during that battle, first the Peacemaker force attempting a Junius Seven on the other hourglasses, thankfully that was stopped by the True ZAFT faction. Then came the firing of that giant beam weapon, it annihilated our reinforcements coming from the moon.

But what really struck me was the dedication of both sides – or should I say three sides, True ZAFT counted – by that time I learned several ZAFT frequencies.

I listened in, what I heard surprised me.

They weren't fighting and dying out there for causes anymore, on all sides, they were fighting for their families, friend, comrades, for each other. Those who knew they about to die, called out not a slogan like the ones who in the beginning of the war, they called love ones, the ones they care about. Sometimes, saying sorry for not living through the war. Other times, asking others to live their sakes and sacrifice. That happened again and again, it stunned me, to able to experience that.

And there I was, trying to get myself killed.

I survived the battle, I came out of a different person than I was when I came in. I was like my old self except for the first time I was at peace with myself and my wife's death.

I felt I could move on.

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"He's just one mobilesuit!"

The unit commander in the Cgue curses as he fires he machinegun at the Dagger L, "How the hell can he make this much damage?"

"Maybe that's the reason why the only sent him," Rey comments, disturbingly calm given the situation. "Because he's all they really need to send."

At the same time, Leon pulls out a Stiletto anti-armor penetrator and throws it, the rocket propelled weapon lands directly into the Cgue's abdomen, going into the cockpit and killing the pilot.

Rey tries to aim for the Dagger L's cockpit but Leon was shielding it with the rocket anchor launcher. The ZuOOT a little distance behind Rey fires his machineguns, they were of a much powerful compared to what the Ginns and Cgue were armed with, they would cut through the Dagger L's armor without much problem.

Leon cuts off the arms off Rey's Ginn, he grabs the head. And with one hand, he uses the mobilesuit as a shield as he moves close to the last ZuOOT, letting the ginn take the hits.

When he was close enough, the Dagger L dash to one side and get behind it. He pulls out the Schwert Gewehr and was about to force it through the ZuOOT.

"No...!" Shinn yells helplessly as he watches from his disabled suit.

The sword goes through it, he apparently went through a hydraulic line as when he does so as a black liquid sprays over the face and upper torso of the Dagger L.

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I resigned from the Atlantic Federation Army as soon as I got back to earth. It felt so good to hold my daughter after more than a year and a half of non-stop war, missions and killing.

I wanted a fresh start, not just for me, but for my daughter as well.

I packed our belongings and I sold off what we couldn't take. We were going to my other home, the Equatorial Union.

Yes, I know it's not exactly the ideal place to rear a child with the civil war going on. But the Philippines was relatively safe since it was in the EURM's full control and it was unlikely the Chua government would retake it with rebels to close to Kuala Lumpur. I also wanted to volunteer to EURM, as a way of sorts to atone for my past.

We got there by first going through the south border to the USSA. Through there, we took a flight that took us to Carpentaria, Oceanic Union and we finally made a booking for a flight to the Equatorial Union.

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As Leon finishes the last ZuOOT off

A beam shot flies past just over his head, the Dagger L looks to the direction and spots a Secundus with its FERFRANS MKR-1 beam assault rifle.

"Puta…" Rick curses, he was hoping to shoot before he could kill the ZuOOT but he fired a millisecond too late.

He then notes that the Dagger L was using a Sword Striker unit which surprises him. Normally, OMNI Daggers and Dagger Ls were armed with either Aile or Launcher. There weren't very many pilots skilled enough to utilize the Sword striker effectively. Rick also notes the Dagger L was alone.

This is one cocky dude, He thought. He must an ace… but which one?

He doubts it was Neo Roanoke, he used an Aile Striker. It couldn't be Rena Imelia or Jane Houston either since they used other mobilesuits. And no way in hell could it be Ken Bederstadt or Jake Clinton, they may use the Dagger L but they'd never go out without support.

"Well," he stows away his rifle and pulls out his Kris beam saber. "Only one way to find out…"

"King Six to all units," a voices call from Leon's radio. "Charlie Two has been evacuated…"

"Good for them," Leon mumbles as he saw the Secundus seemingly wanting a duel, he obliges, pulling out his own saber.

Secundus… he thought as he slowly walks toward it. There're currently six of those right? That means…

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I know what you're thinking, it's 'why the hell I'm still serving OMNI-Enforcer then?'

Well, after several days of settling in, people from Blue Cosmos managed to steal the most important thing in the world from me…

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As Rick's companions slowly move in

His Secundus and the enemy Dagger L were busy exchanging beam saber blows with one another, he uses his spatial awareness to predict where the next saber strike would take place. Despite this advantage, he finds that his opponent was matching his strikes perfectly.

"Either this guy's got spatial awareness," Rick grits his teeth. "Or he's just plain good!"

"Hey OMNI boy!" He calls out, "You're not bad, care to give me name?"

He heard a chuckle from his radio, "I was right, this Secundus belongs to the EURM's poster boy and resident ace. As for your question, my name's Leon Gaiman."

Rick blinks with surprise, "'The Sandman?'"

"The very same, and I'll put you to sleep EU Sergeant Chung!" Leon makes an attempt to cut the Secundus in half like he did with the ginn just a while ago. Rick reels his machine back, he lets go of his Hindalco anti-beam shield and got his other beam saber out at the ready.

"Give it your best shot, Gaiman." Rick hisses. "First Bederstadt, Ayrault and Clinton… Now you too?-! Did the OMNI-bastards brainwash all you guys or something?-! You were born in this country weren't you?-!"

"I just follow orders Rick," Leon counters, pulling out his second beamsaber. "That's what soldiers are for."

"Even if it means forsaking your country men?-!" The young EU Guardsman says with anger, "You yourself must have seen OMNI's atrocities first hand, do you really want to serve for those kind of people?-!"

"Of course I don't want to!" Leon snaps back at him, "Those people can rot in hell for all I care!"

The two lunge at each other and their beam weapons clash, they tried again and again to strike a fatal blow against their opponent.

"Then why?-!" Rick was finally getting the advantage, he was now firmly in the offense and Leon was in defense. "Why are you still fighting for them?-!"

Damn, Leon thought. This kid's better than I thought… 'Gotta think of something and fast…

Just the ground around suddenly erupts with multiple machinegun rounds. They both look above, they find a GAT-333 Raider Full Spec going at them.

"Leon!" Its pilot yells. "Grab on!"

"Sei!" Leon instinctively kicks Rick Secundus away as it descends. The Dagger L then grabs on, the Raider lifts it away and begins to head back to their carrier in the Johore Straight.

"Gaiman!" Rick's Secundus looks up as the Sandman gets away. He fires several shots with his FERFRANS MKR-1 beam assault rifle to no avail.

"You really want to know why I'm still fighting for the Alliance, Chung?" Leon calls. "They've got something important to me!"

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They got my daughter…

I don't how it happened, I was careful to cover our tracks going to the EU and we were living under aliases. The only thing that can explain how they found me so soon was they knew all along. They waited for me to let my guard down and get the drop on me.

A day after Kari disappeared, I got a call, they said they had my daughter and I was follow what they wanted if I wanted her back to alive and not in pieces.

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Ten minutes later, OMNI-Enforcer Spengler-class Pershing, on the Johore Straight

The Raider Full Spec that evacuated Leon's Dagger L carefully hovers above the deck. Leon lets go of the Raider's arms and lands on the deck. The aerial mobilesuit lands beside him. They both walk toward the deck elevator, heading to the hangar below.

After parking his mobilesuit on its regular spot, Leon powers down. He rips off his helmet as the cockpit opens, breathing a steady pace. After several moments, he exits the cockpit.

As he got out, he hears his name being called out and turns to the direction the Raider. He spots the pilot, young woman with long black hair and green eyes waving at him.

"Just another day in the office, eh Gaiman?" She calls out with a smile.

Leon manages himself to smile and wave back.

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That was Lindsei Satou, she's been essentially my partner since the Third Battle for Victoria during the war. Sei was the one who kept me sane through the final days of the war, keeping me from going crazy all the way, I owed her my life.

She too was an ace, she made fifteen enemy kills during the Battle of Orb and earned the title the 'Jaeger of Orb'. It was ironic and painful for her, since she originally was from Orb before her family moved to the Atlantic Federation. Sei considered herself a citizen of Orb opposed to a citizen of the AF, she wanted to go back there when the last war ended. But she felt she would never be welcome there and chose not to.

In a way, Sei was like me. We were both left with little choice on how our lives would go. All thanks to the last war and Blue Cosmos.

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The two aces walked together, making small talk as they headed to the locker room.

Just as they were to leave, the doors slide open, two officers exited. Both stopped when they saw them, stood attention. Sei made a salute, Leon only stood.

One officer wore a strange mask that eerily reminded him of that strange ZAFT officer he had met during the battle of JOSH-A, that particular officer wounded him. He was lucky just to survive that let alone the Cyclops blast. He had the fortune to get onto a Kingfisher 33SP that escaped inland, avoiding Ken DiFalco's assault and ZAFT mobilesuits, along with the Cyclops.

"I see you've survived your first skirmish with the enemy here," Neo Roanoke comments. "It's quite an accomplishment actually, considering the EURM's mercenary troops are concentrated in this area. You're something else, Lt. Gaiman. You too Ens. Satou."

"Thank you sir," Sei replies. Leon doesn't say anything, he simply stood. The officer next to Roanoke, the ship's captain clears his throat, frowning at the pilot, wanting him to show respect to the man.

But Neo held out a hand, "Its okay captain, it doesn't matter if he doesn't want to speak, he has his reasons."

He then holds out his hand, "It's been an honor to meet you."

Leon spots a piece of paper in hand, in between the palm and the thumb.

He takes the hand, "You too, sir."

Neo smiles nodding, the captain also nods, thankful his upstart pilot at least shook his hand.

When the officers left, Sei looks at the corner of her eye to Leon, "So, what did you get?"

Leon opens his hand, the paper was a small paper sachet, he looks inside and finds a USB.

He held it up and examined it, "We'll find out soon enough."

Shooting range, Spengler-class Pershing somewhere in the Johore straight

"Oh, Leon, Oh, Leon, you ain't comin' back alive from this one!" Leon Gaiman said aloud, "What the hell did yourself into?"

Lindsei 'Sei' Satou stood on the range, practicing with her Glock 22C. Leon sat a little distance behind her, on the table in front of him was his laptop, on the screen was a topographical map.

"What did I deserve to get myself into this one," Gaiman asks no one in particular with a sigh.

"You're one of the best we have L.T. That's why you have two titles under your belt isn't it?" Sei said, looking behind her.

Gaiman glances at his partner, "Maybe. C'mon and look at this, it's got suicide written all over it."

Sei holsters her weapon and walks across the room, she looks over his shoulder. The mission Blue Cosmos wanted him to do seem reasonable enough, Leon was to join an interception of a EURM transport aircraft, he was to head to wreckage and take out any survivors. It was the next part that made her reel back in shock.

Gaiman looks over his shoulder, "I told you."

"Th-they're crazy!" Sei yells, "Leon you don't have to do this, screw them!"

Her partner looks at the screen, his hands balled into fists. "You know I can't do that. Kari's counting on me."

Sei shook her head fiercely, "You're not going to survive! Do you think they'll let her go if you die? They're going to kill her just the same!"

Leon grabs her neck, he moved so fast she didn't have time to react, slamming her to the wall.

"Well, do have a better idea?" He grits his teeth at her as he presses his hand against her throat.

Sei's eyes widen as she tries to pry his hand off, it was like a vise, it just getting tighter.

He kept his hand on her neck, she slowly chokes. "Le… Leon."

"Pl-please…st…op…" She barely manages as she struggles to breath. "Leon…"

Gaiman blinks, letting go. Sei's knees gave way as she gasps repeatedly for air.

Leon was in shock, What… what the hell was I doing…?

He backs away from her, "Sei… I…"

Leon suddenly snatches his laptop and runs to the door.

Sei held hand her throat he watches him go, "Leon…"

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I couldn't believe it.

I knew I was losing it again… but I actually lashed out on my only friend in the ship, the one person I trusted.

Those Blue Cosmos bastards must've been laughing their butts off when they decided to give my next mission. They saw that I'd take the most despicable tasks for my daughter's sake like a dog, so they decided to try and kill two birds in one stone. Getting me to kill a man who had been a thorn on their since the beginning of the war, hopefully, also killing me before I became a problem.

My next target was, The leader of the Grey Demons, the Grimaldi Falcon, the Butcher Bird, Kenneth DiFalco.

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A/N: Hope you guys like this, please R&R and tell me what you think. The next chapter should be done by the end of next week.

-Watchman