Disclaimer: Gundam Wing belongs to Sotsu/Sunrise and Bandai Entertainment.
Author's Note: Re-writing this fic a third time… for a few reasons. Reason one: I've decided to finish up all the stories that I left abandoned a decade ago (Requiem and Trapped) so I needed to change bits of this story to make writing the other two easier. Reason two: I noticed that lost the formatting that I intended for this story so I needed to correct that. Without the original formatting, new readers might find it difficult to read and they may not be able to comprehend what I wanted for the story. Lastly, I've always felt that it could have been more but my inexperience in writing limited its potential. Another reason for this revision is because I've decided to finish Requiem and Trapped and needed to change a few things in Zero in order to hash out a better story. I realized that certain plot points in the original were conflicting with the vision I had. The most notable change is choosing to leave the Sanc kingdom dissolved... Somehow it just seemed to make more sense rather than reinstating it as a sovereign country because honestly the only person who can really be its ruler is Relena and she can't be a queen and hold an office at the same time. Plus Zechs has made it quite clear that he has no intention of taking the throne. Also, some chapters will have more revisions than others.
Year AC 198 - two years since the incident with Mariemaia Khushrenada and Dekim Barton. The events that transpired on that day forever ingrained in the hearts of the people that witnessed it the realization that peace was the responsibility of all those who yearned for it. With the safe return of Vice Foreign Minister Darlian, new treaties were drafted and signed and further sanctions were taken to deter possible repeats of such transgressions. These actions of the Earth Sphere Unified Nations helped bolster both the Earth and colonies back to a state of relative 'normalcy'.
Hostilities between nations intermittently occurred now and again, a testament to the fragility of the hard wrought peace. But as she was wont to do, the Vice Foreign Minister would intervene before they escalated into violent conflicts. Her efficient manner and patient countenance transformed her into a beacon of hope for the people. Though the office of Vice Foreign Minister was originally meant to be symbolic, Relena Darlian's dedication and proactive nature was instrumental for the current state of harmony that everyone was reveling in. So despite her young age, she was able to rally an unprecedented amount of support from both the people of Earth and the colonies. And as her term as Vice Foreign Minister of the E.S.U.N. ended many encouraged her to take up more responsibility by taking over the office of Foreign Minister when the current one retired. With much trepidation and slight reluctance Darlian accepted the nomination and subsequently won an overwhelming majority of the vote in the following election.
The Preventers, hidden from the public eye and under the President's command, continued to execute their job of extinguishing disturbances and threats as they arose. Though one could hardly consider such incidents much of a challenge when compared to the war and rebellion of the past century. Their effectiveness was due in large part to Lady Une who ran the organization with fierce efficiency, a reflection of her time as an officer in OZ. Under her strict management the Preventers became a force only the most foolish would dare to cross. But despite her seemingly iron rule, her demeanor had noticeable softened. Many attributed this change to her adoption of Mariemaia after the girl's failed coup d'état. In the years following, Mariemaia, under Une's guidance, matured into a kind, considerate, compassionate, and precocious young girl.
On the other hand, Sally Po, the sole beneficiary of pitied glances from half the agency due to her choice of partners, was often kept busy mollifying said justice-ranting partner, Chang Wufei. Possessing a saintly abundance of patience, the other agents surmised that she was probably the only one who could stand the young man long enough to actually work with him. Wufei on his part had yet to relinquish the 'women are weak' talk, but knew better than to voice such thoughts to the women at headquarters. Though Sally knew deep down even he really didn't believe that notion, but old habits die-hard after all and he wouldn't exactly be Wufei without his spiels.
In regards to Zechs Marquise and Lucrezia Noin, they were temporarily back on Earth and back with the Preventers. Their efforts on the Mars Terraforming Project allowed it to proceed ahead of schedule and it was currently in the stages of establishing an atmosphere. But despite that it would still be another 3 years before the planet's air could be considered breathable. So rather than live out that time in the station orbiting Mars, they felt their talents were much needed elsewhere. And so Zechs found himself the new head of missions operation and Noin was given the duty of training new Preventer agents. In addition to her work with the Preventers Noin, would act from time to time as an advisor and confidant to Relena.
The Gundam pilots had also returned to their seemingly 'normal' lives. Duo Maxwell, former pilot of Gundam Deathscythe Hell, returned to the Sweepers and was currently living with his girlfriend, Hilde Schbeiker. In addition to the Sweepers, he occasionally worked with the Preventers when they found themselves short staffed for difficult missions. The former pilot of Gundam Heavyarms, Trowa Barton, continued to work as a clown with his sister, Catherine Bloom, in the circus. After years spent moving from colony to colony they finally settled back on Earth and decided to spend the next few years touring its continents and were currently traveling through Europe.
Quatre Raberba Winner, former pilot of Gundam Sandrock, was doing a remarkable job as head of the Winner Corporation in addition to rebuilding the colonies. It was thanks to the Winner Corporation that the colonies were able to become self-sufficient in half the time originally thought. Gundam Altron's former pilot, Chang Wufei, kept himself busy with the Preventers. Though still young, his vast experience gained during the war and steadfast nature allowed him to climb the ranks of the Preventers rather quickly. He also came to respect the women working there, especially Sally Po, Lucrezia Noin, and Lady Une, though his stubbornness prevented him from voicing such admiration. Heero Yuy, former pilot of Gundam WingZERO, however, was nowhere to be found. After the Mariemaia situation he'd worked for the Preventers on a couple of missions before disappearing altogether.
Despite the relative calm the Earth and colonies were experiencing, the winds of conflict were beginning to blow once more. Those who were not satisfied with the peace and those who wanted revenge for past tragedies were once again igniting the sparks that would fuel the flames of war...
*Underground base – unconfirmed location*
The operations room was bustling with activity. Uniformed personnel seated in front of computer panels and consoles were typing away in their effort to gather and decipher the data and information requested of them. Despite all the commotion, the atmosphere in the room soon turned eerily quiet as the large metal entryway slid open. In walked an outwardly young looking man with the most imposing air about him. He was tall, handsome, and muscular, with jet-black hair and cold blue eyes. His youthful face belied all the battlefield knowledge and experience he held; usually reserved for someone twice his age. His uniform, littered with medals and a general's insignia, confirmed his status and demanded utmost obedience and respect from those under his command. He continued walking until he reached the center of the room. From there he surveyed the information displayed on the giant screen. The silence in the room was soon shattered, however, when the metal door slid open again and a young soldier walked in.
"General Whitenburg, sir!" the soldier shouted and saluted.
"Yes, what is it, private?" the man asked, eyes hard and steady on the younger man.
"Sir!" the soldier began, "The doctors want to know when you will begin Operation ZERO."
"Hmph, the old men can't wait, can they?" the general mused to himself. "Tell them that we will begin at 1900 hours. At that time send the special ops to locate and retrieve the target. Inform the men that they are not to harm the target in any way. Additionally, any and all obstacles to get in our way are to be eliminated. However, let them know that they should try to do so without causing too much commotion. We don't want them to become aware of our presence just yet."
"Yes, sir!" With that the soldier left the room.
As soon as the soldier left, the general turned around and walked over to the consoles. He pressed a few buttons and suddenly the screen lit up with an image of another man.
"Captain Dereks!" he shouted to gain the man's attention "We will commence Operation ZERO at 1900 hours. Have your men prepared and I'll send someone in to brief you in a few hours."
"Yes, sir!" the soldier said before switching out.
"Ah... to think this day has finally arrived… soon…very soon..." the man whispered to himself as he left the room.
-to be continued-