******* WARNING *******
*** YAOI implications
Here's a quick teaser for part 2 of the revised "Trinity".
A Gundam Wing fanfic by Madamhydra
Part 2 (teaser)
Short Disclaimer: (Full Disclaimers at the end)
Gundam Wing is copyright of its respective creators and all distributors of their work and used without permission.
The first thing Duo did was make a couple of phone calls. The first call was to notify his business partner of his impending absence. In the second call, he asked someone called Cory to come to his apartment right away. As they waited, Relena noted with a touch of envy that it took Duo about three minutes flat to finish packing. Although it might look to the casual observer that Duo was carelessly tossing things into a small duffle bag, she suspected there was nothing random or haphazard about his choices.
Just as Duo was rummaging through his drawers for one last item, there was a quick rap on the apartment door. When he opened the door, Relena saw a scruffy looking boy in his early teens standing in the hallway. The boy gave her a suspicious look, then turned to Duo.
Taking in the duffle bag dangling from the braided teenager's hand, the boy frowned and said, "What's up? You leaving?"
Duo gave him a wry grin and said, "Yeah."
The boy gave Relena a nasty look. Jerking his thumb in her direction, he growled, "Because of her?"
In an uncommonly serious voice, Duo replied, "I've got to go help an old friend."
"Mind keeping an eye on the apartment and plants while I'm gone?
"Sure. No problem." The boy hesitated, then muttered, "Ummm... when are you going to be back?"
Relena had to fight the urge to smile as the boy slouched and shoved his hands into his pockets. The boy was trying so hard to be cool and nonchalant about Duo's departure, but it was plain that the boy was quite devoted to the former pilot and would miss him very much.
"I don't know, Cory. It could take a very long time. He's really messed up," Duo said, putting a hand on the boy's bony shoulder.
"Oh... THAT sort of problem?" Cory's words had a calm, mildly cynical tone that hinted at too much experience with the darker aspects of life on the streets.
"Not exactly, but close enough," Duo replied.
"Good luck, then. You'll probably need it."
With a gracious bow, Duo gestured for Relena to proceed out the door, then tossed a set of keys to Cory.
"Thanks. You're probably right," the braided teenager replied with a rueful laugh as he left the apartment.
Once inside Relena's car -- discretely chosen to be inconspicious -- and set off for her hotel, Duo said, "Okay, Relena, tell me what really set you off."
"What... what do you mean? I told you that I've been working on this problem for...."
Duo held up his hand and interrupted her. "I'm not doubting your sincerity. You said that you've been fretting about this situation for a few months, but I want to know what specific event caused you to say 'enough is enough' and come looking for me? What was the straw that broke the camel's back? What did Heero do?"
She sighed and remained silent for a few moments. Finally Relena said, "It wasn't just what he did, but also what he *didn't* do." She took a deep breath before continuing.
"About two weeks ago on Earth, we were driving through Paris for a meeting. As we rounded a corner, I saw a flash of someone dashing into the street. The next thing I knew, the car hit something and people started screaming."
Duo slid his hands behind his head and leaned back against the seat. He said, "Let me guess. You naturally ordered the car to stop, then hopped out to find out what happened."
Relena nodded, her face turning a bit pale. "Yes. I was horrified to see a young girl lying in the street with blood all over her clothes. There was a hysterical woman whom I assumed was the girl's mother. The scene was absolutely chaotic -- people were yelling, screaming, gesturing wildly.... Heero was riding with me in the car. He tried to stop me from approaching the girl, but I pulled free and knelt beside her to see if there was anything I could do."
She let her head sag back against the cushioned back seat and whispered, "Then it all started...."
Duo said nothing and waited patiently for Relena to gather her thoughts.
"Suddenly, Heero yanked a young boy -- he was maybe ten years old? -- who was standing right next to the car and threw him across the street, right through a store window. At the same time, he ordered the security detail to clear the crowd away from the car. He said something about a bomb...."
"And I bet that the kid was trying to plant the bomb on your car during the commotion. Am I right?" Duo drawled.
Relena's blue eyes widened in surprise and blurted, "Yes. That's right. How on earth did you...? Her eyes abruptly narrowed, then said, "You've... done something like this before, haven't you?"
Duo shrugged. "Not personally, but I've seen similar routines carried out by some of the older street gangs. They use it to carjack rich folks, kidnapping, or to intercept couriers. You set up a fake accident -- in this case, some poor innocent kid getting hit with the car -- then you lure the targets out of their vehicle into the open. Then you grab them."
"But... surely that's incredibly risky! I *felt* the car hit her...."
He shook his head firmly. "It's really not that dangerous if the supposed victim knows what he or she is doing. On city streets, you probably weren't driving very fast, so it wouldn't have been that hard. Let me ask you. Was the little girl carrying a backpack or a package?"
Relena replied slowly, "Yes, she was."
Duo snorted. "What you do is pack that bag with something that makes a good meaty thud when hit, along with some padding to help absorb the impact. The 'victim' jumps in front of the car, lets the bag take most of the hit while she rolls with the blow. Add in some fake blood, some good acting, and you've got a pretty believable car accident."
She shook her head in disbelief. "Unbelievable. But surely, if those criminals repeatedly used this trick, wouldn't people catch on?"
"The gangs usually didn't leave any survivors. Any casual witnesses would have been too scared to talk to the police." Duo turned to gaze out the car window. "Or sometimes they just didn't care enough to bother."
He turned back to Relena. "Heero throwing the kid bomber through the window wasn't the thing that really got to you. What else happened?"
In a near whisper, she said, "Heero... he.... When these people realized that their operation was blown, most of them bolted but some of them attacked." She clenched her fists on her lap. "There was fighting, gunfire.... The little girl... she couldn't have been more than six or seven years old.... I was holding her in my arms, you see. With her blood all over my clothes. I was trying to protect her from the battle...."
Relena took a few deep breaths before she managed to continue. "Heero had just finished taking down some of the other ambushers when he saw the little girl pull out a knife. He was too far away and I was too surprised to defend myself. She was aiming for my heart when he shot her. Twice."
Duo's violet eyes widened in disbelief, then he closed his eyes and let his head fall back against the head rest.
"Did he kill her, Relena?"
"No. She's still alive. But it was sheer luck. The first shot hit her in the chest. The second shot would have hit her in the center of the head, except I had started to shove her away. As it turned out, the second bullet caused a severe skull fracture, but didn't penetrate the brain. The girl's critical, but she should eventually recover."
She grabbed his shoulder. "He didn't hesitate at all! The first shot... I could understand. With all his combat training and fighting experience... old reflexes... He saw a threat to his mission -- protecting my life -- and reacted. But he shot her TWICE!"
He glanced over at Relena and said quietly, "It's a conventional technique to neutralize an attacker who's in extreme physical proximity. A chest hit to stop, followed up by a head shot to kill."
"That's just it! He didn't try to simply stop her. He was going to kill her! And after it was all over, Heero didn't show the slightest sign of remorse or guilt at what he had just done. NOTHING. For all he seemed to care, I could have been holding a file folder, not a six year old girl who he had just shot two times!"
Her hand fell away from Duo's shoulder and she turned to look away.
"Up until then, I kept telling myself that Heero's simply hiding his emotions, just like he used to do. But that afternoon... something told me that he wasn't hiding anything. He really didn't *feel* at all, at least on a conscious level. And that's when I knew that I had to DO something or lose him completely. I got in touch with Wufei and the other pilots, but they couldn't even scratch that shell he's encased himself in."
"And you're hoping that I can reach him."
"I'm not sure if someone like you can really understand what Heero's doing to himself but...."
Duo looked her in the eye and said softly, "Oh, but I *do* know what it's like to completely shut off one's feelings. Or try to, anyway."
She gave him a skeptical look. "Uhhh...."
He laughed mockingly. "I know, I'm the guy who lets his feelings hang out for everyone to see."
She blushed in embarrassment. "It's just that... well, I can't quite imagine you being... um, unemotional."
With a cynical smile, Duo said, "A guy can certainly act all emotional, but that doesn't mean he *feels* emotion." His voice turned pensive. "After they destroyed the Maxwell Church, there was a time.... I wanted to just curl up and cry my heart out, but I didn't have the luxury of grief. I had to hide, I had to find shelter, and I had to eat. Father Maxwell and Sister Helen were the only people around who cared enough to take care of a dirty little street brat, and they were dead. As the only survivor of the massacre, I was considered walking bad luck -- no one else wanted a damn thing to do with me. The only way to survive was to stop feeling, to become emotionally numb so I could deal with the physical requirements of living.
"After a while, you get used to it. And soon, you can't bear the thought of feeling again because you don't want to face all the pain that's built up inside you. That sort of numbness is just like any other addiction, only it's worse. With drugs, there's always limiting factors -- how much money you have, where can you get the dope, whether your body can take the punishment, etc. -- but if it's all inside your head, there's no limit on how far you can push it. The numbness never has to stop. And when you're dead on the inside, you're capable of doing anything."
He paused, then added in a thoughtful voice. "You know, I never underestimate how dangerous kids can be. And do you know why? Because all I have to do is recall what *I* did and was willing to do when I was a kid."
Relena exhaled very slowly, then said, "But you're not like that. Not now. You *do* feel."
He gave her a beautiful, poignant smile. "I met someone who made me realize that shutting off my emotions is no way to live. My body might survive, but not *me*."
Her interest piqued, Relena leaned forward and said, "What happened?"
"I was a bit short of cash so I decided to look for someone to mug in a nearby park. That's where I met her."
"Her?" Thinking back to what little she knew of the Maxwell Church and Sister Helen, she asked tentatively, "Was she... a nun?"
Duo burst out laughing. "Quite the opposite. She was a whore. Just another streetwalker. A worn, used up whore and she was OLD -- probably in her late thirties and looked at least a decade older. And she was dying from some god-awful disease that I couldn't even pronounce. As it was, I nearly cut her throat when we first ran into each other. I don't know why I didn't kill her, but something about her and how she dealt with all the shit in her life...." He chuckled quietly. "I ended up taking care of her for just over a month until she died. But in that time, she taught me some very important lessons about being honest and true to myself."
Relena guessed that there was much more that Duo left unsaid, but she didn't press for more information. All that really mattered is that Duo understood what had happened to Heero and was willing to do something about it.
The rest of the journey was spent in a comfortable silence. Soon they were pulling into the underground garage of the most exclusive hotel in the colony. Emerging from the car, they were met by a tall blond-haired man whose posture and discrete suit seemed to scream 'security'.
"Miss Peacecraft, why didn't you notify us of your travel plans?"
Her lips thinned and she responded in a cool voice, "I had some personal business to take care of, Jacobs. Besides, I did have a highly competent escort of security."
Jacobs said tensely, "But we didn't know your location. If there had been another ambush...."
She smiled politely, and asked, "Is Heero back yet?"
"He called earlier and said that he would be delayed a few hours," the blond man answered.
With a sigh, she commented, "I don't know whether to be glad or not for the delay, Duo."
Jacobs stiffened slightly at the sound of Duo's name, then gave the former Gundam pilot a hard, suspicious stare. Duo responded to the scrutiny with a sly smirk.
Duo casually drawled, "Oh Relena, since my visit is supposed to be a surprise for Heero...."
She gave him a startled look, then caught his quick glance in Jacobs' direction. Looking in the security agent, she noticed the suspicion on the blond man's face. Her lips thinned, and she said in a firm, decisive voice, "You will not inform Heero of Duo's presence. I want his visit to be a surprise for Heero. That's an order."
"But Miss Peacecraft...!"
She smiled pleasantly, but there was no concession in her voice. "May I remind you that you are working for *me*. I'll deal with Heero, if he expresses any displeasure with my actions. Is that perfectly clear?"
Jacobs gritted his teeth and replied, "Yes... Miss Peacecraft. I won't say anything to Yuy about your visitor."
"Thank you." With a gracious nod, she headed for the elevator.
Before following her, Duo turned to Jacobs and purred, "And you better make sure that no one *else* informs Heero that I'm here."
"Or what? You can't hold me responsible for what other people might say...."
Duo's eyes glittered with predatory interest. "Ex-CUSE me? First you act like you have the authority to browbeat Relena into reporting her every little move, and now you're sniveling that you don't have the authority OR ability to make the members of your security keep their mouths shut? Sorry, that won't fly. You can't have it both ways. Are you in charge or not?"
Glaring at the slim teenager standing in front of him, Jacobs snarled, "Who the hell do you think you are, trying to give me orders!?"
"I wouldn't dream of giving you orders. It's just a friendly warning. I'm holding you personally responsible for keeping my presence a secret. And if things get fucked up because Heero finds out about me, then I will come looking for you. Then you and I will have a nice little chat about your blithering incompetence."
"And that's supposed to worry me?" Jacobs sneered.
Duo said nothing, but his ferociously wicked grin made the older man shiver, just as if Death itself had run a cold, bony finger down his spine.
Keeper of Duo's Dark Side ~~~ Duo no Seishi
Co-Keeper of Duo's Scythe & Bat Wings (w/ Death)
Co-Keeper of Little Grim Reaper Duo (w/ Kitsune)
Keeper of Saitoh's Sex Life ~~~ Saitoh no Koibito
The Full Disclaimer
All rights and privileges to Shin Kidousenki Gundam Wing are trademarks and property of Sunrise, Bandai, Sotsu Agency, and associated parties. The characters of these works are used WITHOUT permission for the purpose of entertainment only. This work of fiction is not meant for sale or profit.
Original portion of the fiction included here is considered to be the sole property and copyrighted to the author.