With the flash and roar of verniers, we're off, leaving the wreckage of Peacemillian and entering the fray. He's intent, focused on finding that other one, and defeating it. First though, there are a number of those annoying dolls in the way. No matter, they fall easily and swiftly to us. Truly, I can think of no better match for me than him. He's intent on what he's doing, and not easily distracted. He KNOWS who his target is, unlike that first guy who went nuts and blew up a colony. I may love to fight, but that was just wrong, and I tried to tell him that, but he wouldn't listen... Of course, my trying to talk to him likely added to his insanity. Then I fought those two other suits- inferior designs really. I was inexperienced then, though, and relished the battle, even though I lost. But at least that got rid of that crazy guy.
With a certain sense of smugness we slash our way through the dolls, aiming for battle station Libra. That other one is there, and I can't describe how much I look forward to that battle!
There! There's the other one! Waiting for us! Delight easily beating out fear, I put my all into this one. I will be the final victor! I, who came first! That other one wouldn't BE here if not for ME!
Augh... even though I am the first and superior, the other one is a decent match. The nerve! The other snatched away my gun with that stupid kinky whip!
Zechs and Epyon. He subconsciously corrects me as we fight. Fine, I'll at least call the other one by name. Hmph. What sort of name is Epyon, anyway? "Next" my armor-plated ass! Though Zechs was okay when we were together, this other guy is far better suited to my ability.
Watch out-! Damnit! We barely blocked Epyon's beam sword- is that supposed to be some kind of phallic symbol or something?- and now I've a monster gash in my shield. All my short life all I've known is battles and madness. Well, the madness was more the pilots' fault than mine. They couldn't cope with me. But this one is different. I think he's aware on some level of me, but he doesn't quite acknowledge me outside of combat. We've had some strange discussions while fighting, though.
Hey, that noise- Peacemillian's engines are starting up-! Whoa! Damnit, Yuy, he's gonna-
Oh, this is NOT good.
It's not over.
Greeeeeat. Epy-baka's got that big old honking thermal phallic symbol pointed at my FACE. You know, if I get killed, I'm blaming it on you. I know what you did to Wing.
It's not over. Zechs could have killed us both by now.
Well whoop-di-doo, what in war's name is holding him up, then?! Epy's ticked about the phallic jokes.
That's your fault, not mine.
Joy. While you and Zechs are busy exchanging taunts and pretty war philosophies, this entire chunk of metal IS falling, y'know! I don't much relish the idea of a flaming death here!
There's an explosion and in the brief confusion we retrieve my beam saber- a PROPER thermal weapon, thankyouverymuch!- and hold Epyon at bay! Ha ha! Eat that!
Don't get cocky.
Yeah, yeah, y'think I dunno that? Ha! It's over now, Epyon, Zechs! The colonies are agreeing to peace! So you're unneeded as of now!
I already said it's not over.
No kidding, somebody's gotta stop this block, and- hey! Where's the hell does he think he's going?! Inside this hunk of scrap?!
Told you so.
Oi! Don't sound so smug, Yuy. Let's go finish the bastard!
We can't kill him.
Why the hell not?!
Relena would be sad.
Well DUH, stupid. She'd be sad if you got offed too, y'know! I know y'got the hots for the chick, and I can't blame you, she's not bad, but please! If you don't kill Epyon, it'll try to kill us! So let's GO already!
Giving chase, we follow Epyon into the block, almost immediately resuming the swordfight that had been interrupted. Man, why'd they build the hallways so big? You'd almost think they'd been expecting to have fighting mobile suits inside the thing.
WHOO! Oh yeah! First blood is MINE! Lemme pick up Epyon's arm and waves it in Zechs' face! Please?
No. Now stay focused.
Good point, once we deal with this, there's still other stuff to deal with.
This block is still falling. We'll destroy the propulsion system.
Oh fine. Let's go then. Swiftly we pick our way through the block and arrive at the propulsion unit. Lay waste to this thing and all should be well- Oh crud. Yuy, I swear, you could have shut OFF the beam saber before we found this! But noooooo! Hadta leave it on and it's outta power now! And the machinecannons are out of ammo. What now, genius?
All that's left is the self-detonation system.
WHAT?! Hey, I'd love to be as heroic as the next guy, but isn't that a little extreme?!
200 seconds and counting. Do you have a better solution, Zero?
Well, no, not really, but- Ack! Hey! Whoa, where'd the heck did Epyon appear from? The pilot and Yuy are exchanging words- well, more like Zechs is talking and Yuy's gaping in surprise. I'll admit, I'm surprised, too- Epyon just nailed the propulsion system! Who would have thought that from my mortal enemy?
It's not enough!
He's right, too, damn it all. This thing is still gonna sink and cause havoc on Earth. We're trying to pick our way out, but it's slow going. He's desperate, almost.
Zero... show me the way...
Touching the amount of trust y'got in me Yuy, I'm working on it- hang a left here and-
Wonderful. I couldn't have planned it better. There's Altron- pardon, Nataku, as I've heard the pilot call it. (Personally I think he's a little nutty in the head, and I confirmed this when Yuy let the 'jit pilot me. Oi! That was an interesting experience.), and he's got my gun! So let's go out there and blow the shit out of this thing!
Mission acknowledged.
Flying out of the falling block, and getting out in front, even I'm having trouble with this shot. The heat from the re-entry is... really... really.... overloading....
Hang in there... trying to... lock on... it's hard...
I.... I will...
....almost... locked...
Somehow, against all logic, through the sheer blending of will and technology, we lock on and and fire. Yuy, you really amaze me sometimes. Let's get out of this re-entry hellhole and back into cold space!
Gashed shield and all, I switch over to neo bird mode and make a truly dramatic reappearance through the flare remaining from the explosion. The others are cheering Heero, but let's face it, everything would have been lost if not for me, too.
Mission... complete.
You can say that again, Yuy. It's over for good now, right? As much as I enjoy desperate battles, it's tiring. Either that or we've been hooked up entirely too long and I'm picking it up off you. But I've had enough of fighting to last a lifetime. Maybe we can do some nifty exhibition stuff now? That'd be a nice way to retire, but I doubt that's what you've got in mind, huh?
He doesn't answer, I guess he's off in his own thoughts that I can't read. He's in a bit of daze, his hands barely on the controls, leaving most of the return trip to me. Of course, after that encounter, it's not surprising. They're so fragile, these humans that create and destroy. But they possess something great, too. Determination, kindness, hope... I learned that from them. Otherwise I'd have turned out to really just be a glorified mobile doll (a sickening thought, really). In any case, as we fly to MO-II to rejoin the others, it's over. But I can't help but wonder though... there's something incomplete. Well, it's not my concern. My mission is to fight the battles and win.
In the words of Heero Yuy, mission complete.

Author's notes: This fic is one of a pair, actually. The two fics, "First" and "Next", can be read seperately, but I think they compliment eachother nicely.