Title: Because I Have Been Given Much
Setting: Sometime between episodes 35-39, while Duo is having his 'gloomy' moods and is questioning whether or not true peace exists.
Warnings: language, mild angst, gloomy and semi-blasphemous Duo
Archive: GWAddiction, and if she chooses, Steelsong (www.steelsong.com)

Dedication: To Stephanie - because if it weren't for you, I would not be writing. *HUG*

Because I Have Been Given Much by DaMoyre

I don't know what the hell is wrong with me lately, but I seem to find myself in a shitty mood more often than not. Not that I don't have plenty of reasons to be worried, frustrated, and utterly pissed off, mind you. The state of affairs at the moment is pitiful and I'm not even sure why I'm fighting anymore. I figure, maybe I was just an idealistic fool when I thought that becoming a Gundam pilot and fighting for the colonies was actually going to make a difference.

But nevermind that.

Today could be a day like any other. You know, just your regularly-scheduled fucked up day for Duo Maxwell. No biggie. I'm pretty used to it by now. But today isn't a day like any other, simply because it is 'Thanksgiving' day.

I don't know why I should give a shit about it. As far as I'm concerned, it's not really my holiday. I was born and raised in the colonies, but I guess I'm still an American. And this being an American holiday and all...

I don't remember ever celebrating this holiday with my family. But then again, I barely remember my family.

Of course, I never celebrated Thanksgiving either when I was living in the streets of L2. Sister Helen, though, she never let a Thanksgiving Day go by without some form of celebration. I don't know how she managed, but she always went out of her way to make holidays special in the orphanage.

As far as I remember, there was never really enough food to have a Thanksgiving feast, or any kind of feast. Sister Helen did her best with the little she could get. Sometimes it was a couple of turkey legs and thighs, so she would throw in a few peas and potatoes to make soup with it. If we were really lucky, she could get someone to donate a whole turkey or a chicken for us; and then she would make stuffing from the stale bread, of which we always seemed to have an abundance.

Father Maxwell would sit at the table with us and give grace, thanking the Lord for all his gifts to us. I never understood that. Sure, I was glad to have a warm meal in front of me, a place to live, and a place to sleep. But in the back of my mind, I knew that somewhere the filthy rich were eating a *real* feast, while the rest of us were just filthy.

A couple of times, I actually voiced my thoughts, only to be gently scolded by Sister Helen who wanted me to be more grateful. She wanted me to pray and to sing praise to her Lord. I never did. I never could.

But today, I miss her so, and I can hear her sweet singing voice as clear as it was back in the church, so many years ago.

'Because I have been given much, I too must give
Because of thy great bounty, Lord each day I live
I shall sing praise and thanks to thee
I'll give my love to those in need
And we shall find our peace in thee.....'

I almost wish I could go back and sing those hymns with her. It doesn't matter that they mean nothing to me.

But I can't go back, and at this point... it almost seems that I can't go forward either. I don't know what to do. Hilde thinks I must keep fighting for what I believe in.

Shit. Wouldn't it be nice to know what I *actually* believe in? That's all I would really like tonight. I would like to know where to go from here...

Father Maxwell always said that when in doubt, we should ask the 'Lord' for guidance. But why should I bother talking to a God who doesn't care, a God who never listens?

He didn't care enough to protect the Maxwell Church, or all the little children who died in the fire. And I know for a fact that Sister Helen prayed for all of us everyday.

My life was spared, but not by His grace. Death did not dare to touch Shinigami.

It's ironic. On other Thanksgiving days, I'd wish for a big feast, with course after course, and a never-ending line of desserts. But tonight, when I could *actually* get a nice meal, I'm not even hungry. Too bad.

I'm lucky to have Hilde with me. She's a good friend. I suppose I should be thankful for her. I should be thankful for Quatre, too, and maybe even for the other Gundam pilots. Just knowing that they are out there gives me a little hope.... at least I know that I won't be fighting alone.

Still, I can't find it in me to thank anyone for that.

So maybe I'm just an ungrateful bastard. Can't help the way I feel.

Until this omnipotent guy up there gives me a sign that he actually *does* exist, that he actually *does* care, I'm not giving any thanks. Until I know that this war will come to an end, that peace will prevail and that we're not all just fighting for nothing... I can't thank him.

So, happy fucking Thanksgiving.