Standard Disclaimer Applies. I do not own Gundam Wing. If ever I am violating anything, just send me an email. Don't have money, please don't sue =)

GOSH! People! Where are my reviews?! Do I really suck that much in writing? I know it has always been my waterloo, but hey, I really need feedback, you know…

Like to thank those people who really bothered to click the submit review below. Really do appreciate it, guys. Much love! Peace! c",)

Ok, this is the final Installment for my fic. I have finished this long time ago but never got the chance to upload it here in ff.net. hope you like it. I do hope I could write another one…

THE BEGINNING OF THE END

I

Again, Catherine was lying down on top of one of the animal cage at the back of the tent where the major event was happening, waiting for a summon for her performance.

Due to what had happened the previous days, their performance was canceled. But they decided that it was time to bring everything again to normal. And time to bring joy to the people who suffered the effect of another war.

She stared above. Although the cool night breeze was similar with that of the earth, the only thing missing were the sky, the stars and the moon.

And Trowa.

She sat up, enveloped her legs in an embrace and placed her chin on her knees.

She knew he was all right. They had not spoken yet since the day she departed from earth. She missed him…

Someone cleared his throat. Catherine looked down from where she was sitting and was surprised at what she saw.

"Hi," Trowa said with a big smile on his face. "Would you like to get down here and have a talk with me?"

Unshed tears blurred her vision as she gazed at him silently.

He came.

She released her hold on her legs and rested her chin on her palm instead, smiling in return. "About what?"

"Come down and I'll tell you," Trowa answered, leaning back on the crate behind him, then crossed his arms on his chest.

"Tell me and I'll come down," Catherine countered.

"All right," Trowa said. "It's about love."

"Love," Catherine said, then blushed. Her eyes became misty. "Now there is an interesting subject."

"The only subject they forgot to include in my curriculum when they teach me to become a soldier," he stated gloomily. Then Trowa looked at her as if begging for forgiveness. "Care to teach me?"

"I'd love to," Catherine said and went to his open arms.

II

Passengers en route to Earth Base 632, please proceed to Gate 4. The shuttle will leave in five minutes.

Passengers en route to the X922 Colony, please proceed to Gate 17. The shuttle will leave in ten minutes.

Passengers…

The announcement could be barely heard amidst the throng of people waiting at the shuttle port of the L2 Colony. But the lady walking towards Gate 4 was oblivious to the sound around her. She dreaded this day. The day she would be back again to her former world. A world that was decided for her long before she was born.

Sylvia Noventa sat on the bench near the gate. She was digging into her shoulder bag for her passport. As soon as she found it, she stood without looking up. She stifled her gasp as she came in contact with a hard chest of a man.

"I'm so…" she trailed off when she saw who the man was.

"Nice to see you again," Wufei greeted with nod.

"Wufei? Wh-what are you doing here?" she stammered.

All of a sudden, Sylvia blushed as she remembered the note she left on his table before she left. She did not want to say goodbye. It was hard to explain but she suddenly felt being pulled towards this man she barely knew and it scared her.

Scared her even more that going back to her miserable life.

"I've come to bring you back," Wufei declared, niceties was never his forte. Wufei felt something towards her he could not explain. Maybe she would be the reason for his heart to be whole again. He just had to give it one more try.

"You were good at your old profession, so I have a proposition for you. You don't have o go back to your old life if you want to join me," Wufei said.

Sylvia just stared at him for several heartbeats.

And it was her heartbeat that she was hearing.

Wufei offered his hand.

Sylvia stared at it, contemplating. Then gave in.

Wufei smiled in her direction and led her to the port's exit. Towards their new life.

III

Quatre was in his office late that night. It was 12 am, earth's time yet he was alone in his dark domain, standing by the glass window behind his desk. His hand was holding a glass of wine and the other tucked in his trouser pocket.

After the war, he went straight home to his colony. He did not have the courage to go back to the L1 Colony because he knew who he would meet there.

Quatre looked over his shoulder to the small velvet box resting on his desk.

The same velvet box enclosing the diamond ring he had been keeping for seven years. The engagement diamond ring that had been the heirloom of the Winner family that had been passed on for generations.

He went over to his desk, placed his glass on the table and picked up the velvet box. He stared at the content for several moments.

Then with a final decision, he snapped box closed and fisted his hand over it, while the other reached for his great coat resting on his chair.

He was walking around his desk towards the door when it slid open.

Quatre stopped dead.

"Where are you going?" Dorothy asked, entering the room, surprised to see him leaving in a hurry.

Quatre was able to snapped out of his surprise to respond to her inquiry. "I was going to see somebody," he replied.

"Oh," Dorothy uttered, disappointedly. She averted her gaze. "I won't keep you." She turned towards the door.

"Dorothy," Quatre began, stopping her from leaving.

She stopped but did not meet his eyes.

Quatre took a step closer. He dropped the coat he was holding on top of his desk by his side. "I was on my way to see the person..." then another step, "who took something from me..." then another step, "she took away my breath..." another step, "my heart..." another step, "and my soul." He said the last word as he stood directly in front of her.

A tear fell down her cheek as she listened to his words.

Quatre lifted her chin with his finger so she could look straight into his eyes.

"I don't want them back," Quatre said, sliding his finger on her jaw then cupping her face with his hand.

"But, Quatre," Dorothy said, breathless, "you can't live anymore without those."

Quatre smiled. "I don't care. I could not live anyway without her.

I cannot go on living without you."

Dorothy could not control the tears that flowed out from her eyes. Tears of happiness. She was not sorry for coming all the way here to say goodbye.

"I love you," Quatre declared, his face descending towards hers. "Will you marry?" he asked before his lips touched hers.

Quatre unfolded her hands from her side and put the small box in them.

Dorothy knew what she held in her hand, so without opening it, she encircled her arms on his neck and kissed him back.

"I love you, too," Dorothy answered. "Of course, I'll marry you."

And the two of them was locked in a passionate kiss.

IV

The ball ending the peace conference was held at the L1 Colony, the night before all the delegates were to go back to their own country or colony.

A pair of Prussian eyes followed her graceful movement across the dance floor. But it looked like a pair of hawk's eye ready to attack its prey as he eyed her partner.

"Are you going to cut in or just stand there letting your jealousy eat you?" Duo appeared by his side. "Man, you are pathetic!" he said and leaned his elbow on Heero's shoulder.

"Duo..." Heero warned. "Don't give me that look, my friend, it won't work. It's about time I put some sense in that hard skull of yours," Duo reasoned as he put his other arm akimbo while the other one on Heero's shoulder pointed towards Relena. "Look at her. Just look at her. You wouldn't be surprised if another man snatched her under your nose. Geez, the lady's a beauty!"

Heero's gaze sharpened as the lady in question was whisked away by a handsome delegate on the dance floor.

"See?" Duo smirked, removed his arm from Heero and made a waving gesture towards Relena. "Man, if you will not do anything…" and left his speech undone as he moved through the crowd leaving Heero behind.

His gaze was still glued to the lady in white muslin evening gown, moving gracefully on the dance floor. He was given another chance to make things right. But how would one know if it was the right thing? They had survived for the past seven years without each other. She was still strong. And he, surviving. She looked like she had moved on. And he, trying.

But how would one know? The question still stands.

The music ended and the two bowed at each other as Relena's partner led her to the side as the orchestra played a waltz. The delegate she was dancing with handed her hand to another man who probably reserved the next dance with her. Heero's eyes grew sharper. Relena's new partner was about to lead her to the dance floor for a waltz when Heero sliced through the crowd and intercepted the two.

"Mind if I cut in?" Heero asked, although the question was polite, his tone was an octave lower than his usual and accompanied with his sharp gaze.

"N-no. I-I don't mind at all," Relena's partner released her hand, bowed and retreated.

"May I?" Heero bowed and led her to the dance floor. He enveloped her in his arms as they awaited the first string of the waltz.

Relena inwardly sighed and tried hard not to smile. How like Heero to use that glare whenever he was serious. And she was guessing it was something serious for he had avoided her for the rest of her stay since the end of the fight with his supposed father. She thought he would avoid her completely until she went back to earth after the ball tonight. No need to stay longer. Better get back to work as soon as possible to forget everything that had happened and pretend that everything had been a dream.

"Thank you for staying," Heero said breaking the silence.

"No," Relena amended him. "Thank you for accommodating me… us."

"Always been a pleasure," Heero returned and looked down at her. "Relena—"

"I'll be leaving after the ball," Relena cut him off. Somehow she was not prepared to hear things from Heero other than what she had always wanted to hear. And she knew she would never hear those words from his mouth.

Right there and then, Relena decided it was time to move on. After seven years, she felt sure it was the right thing to do now.

"I heard," Heero confirmed, his tone going deeper again.

Heero just locked her gaze. His eyes betraying none of his emotions. He was surprised though that he was not reading anything from Relena's either.

Relena was glad that she was able to muster her strength to cloud her emotions. She had been doing it for the past seven years. It was enough practice to stand there and looked straight at Heero's eyes. She knew it was the end of the road. She witnessed how he danced with Hilde. He was smiling. And now he was dancing with her, as if the world had come to an end.

It was past time to let go. Heero had a much better life. Better love.

"Relena," Heero whispered. "It's good to see you again. I—" Heero broke off as the music came to an end. He gradually let her go without releasing her gaze. Finally, he gave up, bowed and moved away, leaving Relena alone in the middle of the dance floor.

Relena turned and hurriedly walked out of the ballroom. Somehow, she felt thankful towards Heero. It made her leaving quite bearable.

Ten minutes later, she was aboard her space shuttle heading towards the earth, her home, without saying goodbye to Duo and to Heero. She did not want to bother them especially with the festivities going on. She just changed into a simple pink dress and left hurriedly.

The space shuttle was finally released into space and Relena looked forlornly at the new L1 Colony from the window. Then a tear fell down on her cheek as she sat back and closed her eyes.

Unbeknownst to her, a pair of prussian eyes were glued to the monitor in the Central Command showing the retreating figure of her space shuttle. Heero stared at the screen for what it seemed like an eternity until it became just a dot. Only then did Heero lower his gaze. He combed his hand through his hair, making his bangs shade his face.

Then the door slid open and admitted his comrade. "So, there you are. Did you know that she left already?" Duo asked leaning at the door and crossed his arms in front of his chest.

"What are you still doing here?" Duo pressed on when Heero remained quiet. He knew he was the only who could talk annoyingly to Heero, who could make him see things in a different perspective in the past years they were working together. And this is one situation Duo must opened Heero's eyes.

"Duo," Heero's tone was laced with warning.

"Heero, my man," Duo began. "How many times have I told you that that tone won't work at me?"

Heero expelled a deep breath. "Just go back to the other guests and take over for me."

"You are giving up on her again," Duo ignored his change of subject. "Heero be sensible! You are the man… you pursue. You cannot just let her go like that. For seven years, you've worked hard to be what you are now. All because of her. Don't delude yourself."

"Duo, just… drop it. It is not meant to be. Trowa---"

"Trowa is in L2 Colony pursuing Catherine," Duo cut him off. He lifted an eyebrow when Heero turned to him, shocked. "I knew you were jealous of him. I could sense it. You are blinded by your emotions that you could not even see that Relena was jealous as well of Hilde?"

"What?" Heero asked, nonplussed. "How--?"

"I guess she believed you loved Hilde with the way you acted around her. It was not for me to tell the rest but Relena spoke with me about it once."

"Damn," Heero hissed and stood up. Combing his fingers through his air.

"Well, I guess—"

"Shut up," Heero warned and exited the Central Command and went to the hangar where Wing Zero was kept. He still had a chance. Then, he took off Wing Zero in bird mode and headed for earth.

Twenty minutes later, Relena's shuttle docked at Base 11 of the Sank Kingdom. It was almost midnight, earth time that night. It was a good thing though because she knew her brother was home with his family and would bombard her with questions she had no intentions of answering. And besides, she wanted to be alone for awhile.

It was raining then. She got off from her limousine which Paygan drove from the Docking Center towards her home a good mile from the castle. That house has been her sanctuary ever since. She knew there would not be anybody in it since she gave her staff a vacation when she went to the conference.

She instructed Paygan to go back to the castle. The limo took off leaving her alone in the middle of the cold rainy night.

Relena sighed which emitted a white mist then walked the pathway towards the main entrance of her home. A good ten feet away, she lifted her head to look at the darkened house only to find somebody lurking in the dark.

Somebody familiar.

"Did you know that Wing Zero only took five minutes to get here from the L1?" the man asked, blowing a cloud of white mist onto the cold night air.

"Heero," Relena whispered and dropped the umbrella she was holding.She felt too weak to see him there.

"Relena," Heero began, still keeping the distance, although he could see that Relena is getting soaked. "watashi ga watashi no subete no kokoro to tamashii de dorehodo anata no koto wo aisite iruka...... moshi anataga tada sono koto dakewo shitteite kureru nara."

Relena felt her tears had a will of their own for they flooded her eyes. She felt suddenly warm although she was soaked to her skin. She bowed and closed her eyes for a moment. Then she ran down the path straight into Heero's embrace. She locked her arms tightly around his neck.

"Just make sure it is me you love with all of your heart and all of your soul," Relena cried and burried her head on his shoulder. "Not Hilde."

Heero enveloped her tightly in his embrace and kissed her cheek. "I love you, Relena. I have loved you from the moment I set my eyes on you eight years ago. I was too scared to realize it. I still am. I just have to face everything. I have done everything I can to be worthy of you."

Relena lifted her head from his shoulder and looked deep into his eyes. "Why? Why did it take you so long? I almost gave up hope. Then Hilde—"

Heero seized her lips for a passionate kiss. "Hilde is Duo's wife," Heero said when he lifted her head.

Relena closed her eyes, leaned her forehead on Heero's lips and smiled. "I'll kill Duo for this," she said jokingly.

"I have been telling that to him for years now," Heero said, smiling also. He kissed her temple, then her cheek, and finally her lips.

"I love you. Will you marry me?" he asked against her lips.

Relena's tears kept falling down on her cheeks. "Yes. I love you so much."

Relena kissed him with deep fervor, which Heero answered with his own. Heero lifted her in his arms without breaking the kiss and carried her inside the house. "Let's get you all dried up before you get sick," he said in between kisses.

"Mmm… would you do the honor?" Relena asked.

"My pleasure," Heero answered.

Then the door of the house clicked as the lock went home.


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