*sigh* Okay, I edited some of this, so if you've already read it, you should take another look. Hopefully some things are clearer. And yes, I am writing more. I'll get it up as soon as I finish. I'd rather not have reviewers threatening to smite me if I don't add more, as it tends to hurt quite a lot. Enjoy, and don't forget to Review!

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It appeared that Professor G had been keeping a wealth of information a secret from him. During a particularly nasty bout of boredom, Duo had hacked into Professor G's personal files. The thought that the old man //had// a personal life was too creepy for further speculation.

Now he wasn't so sure if that had been a wise idea.

He'd been on edge lately, something itching at the back of his mind, trying desperately to catch his attention. Well, that itch was scratched, and it looked like he was firmly ensnared.

Duo Maxwell, pilot 02 of the gundam Deathsythe, stared blankly at the computer in front of him. A single transmission was playing, the screen the only illumination in a dark room in Quatre's vast mansion.

The edges of the screen were a little fuzzy, bits and starts of static at random intervals. Clearly, the message was old; the date printed in the bottom right corner of the screen stated it had been recorded in U.C. 0090.

A beautiful woman, seeming to be in her mid-to-late-twenties, appeared on the screen after Duo opened a video file called "ANCESTORS". Long wine-red hair was bound in a braid and pulled over her shoulder as the woman fiddled with the end in an eerily familiar nervous gesture. Deep green eyes stared unwaveringly out of the monitor at Duo. A red bandana with dark blood stains was tied around her arm, though it was obvious she wasn't injured.

Typing in a command, the had video started. The woman's voice seemed to fill the room, almost guaranteed to capture the attention of anyone within hearing. It may have been the elusive brogue that accented it, or the way she shifted from language to language without missing a beat. Strangely, even if he didn't know the dialect she was using, Duo could understand her words perfectly.

// "Please don't judge me too harshly, *angelo mio*."

A small smile lit the woman's face.

"I hope that you view this when you're old enough to realize how difficult this decision was for me to make. I'm a soldier at heart, and always will be. As was your father."

The smile died as the last sentence passed her lips. An expression of endless sorrow filled her eyes with tears, but she refused to let them fall. After a silent moment, she seemed to gather her composure and continued.

"I had joined Wraith Squadron expecting to fight like Hell. I did just that, and ended up falling in love with my commanding officer as well. Fate's funny like that sometimes. Called HellSpawn on the battlefield, Kai Malestrom was a soldier without equal. He never wavered, never second- guessed himself. So confidant. Plus he was *tres beau*."

She winked, a sparkle of mischief masking the sadness in her eyes.

"Of course, it didn't take long before he fell for me," she laughed and shook her head, then went on. "I didn't mean to sound conceited, but to be honest, I was reluctant to admit that I felt anything for him, at first. Bad past experiences, and all. But something he told me finally broke through." At this point, she lowered her voice to flawlessly mimic a man. " 'If you dwell on painful memories, they'll eventually destroy you.' "

She returned her voice to normal.

"After thinking about that one, I finally gave in. I mean, what woman can resist a man who knows their darkest secrets and still loves her? "We were planning on getting married. But apparently Fate had different ideas. Last year, on this very day, your father was killed."

She tugged on her braid, gripping it so hard her knuckles turned white.

"It all happened so fast. We were on a mission. It should have been so simple. Go in, destroy a strategic enemy base, and get out. But something went wrong. It turned out one of the senior officers was a traitor, and our mission was a trap. We were completely outnumbered. Over half of the elite mobile suit pilots of Wraith Squadron were killed. One enemy got in a truly lucky shot, and the shock snapped Kai's harness... he was slammed into one of the control panels. The details after that point are a blur of burning anger and hatred. When I came back to myself, we were back at base. I opened the hatch to reach Kai, only to find he was hanging on by a thread. His head had connected with the panel, and his brain was hemorrhaging. There was nothing I could do."

The tears she had earlier held at bay cascaded unchecked down her cheeks. Her face was pale, and she was shaking violently as she re-lived the horror.

"He was my soul-mate. . . he died in my arms that night." //

Duo paused the video and momentarily closed his eyes; for some reason this woman's story struck a chord within him. He wanted to reach out and comfort her. He finished watching the video with a sheen of moisture in his piercing blue orbs.

The woman went on to explain that she and Malestrom had made plans in case something happened to one of them. She briefly overviewed artificial insemination, and stated that she had given a semen sample from Kai and an egg from her, along with the video and some files containing information on their military and personal records, to a trusted friend in the medical/scientific community. She then went on, saying that in the event of her death, that friend would see to it that their child was born in a better time.

// "I can only hope that you live a long and fulfilling life, *angelo mio*. Always stand firm in your beliefs, and don't let anyone try to change you. You are who you make yourself to be. I wish your father and I could be there with you, to watch you grow, help you through life's hardships. The Garret family has always been wonderful to me. I trust they and their children will grant you the same kindness. *Ti amo, angelo mio. Ti amo.*" //

With those final words, the video ended. Duo belatedly noticed the attached files. The first was of the woman on the video, and he skimmed over the basics, planning on a more in-depth perusal later.

Name: Nikkoletta S'tarah

Sex: Female

DOB: August 18, U.C. 0064

Blood Type: O Positive

Height: 5' 6"

Weight: 132 lbs

Rank: Colonel

Callsign: n/a

Joined: U.C. 0086

Discharged: ???

Squadron: Wraith Squadron, 108th Mobile Suit Division

Applicable Skills: Seasoned Field Doctor, Surgeon

Opening the second file, Duo caught his breath as he stared at the man's image that  loaded. Piercing eyes gazed confidently from the screen beneath a tangle of long chestnut brown hair tied in a queue at the nape of his neck. A vertical scar bisected his left cheek and eyebrow.

Duo quickly scanned the file.

Name: Kai Malestrom
Sex: Male

DOB: June 24th, U.C. 0062

Blood Type: O Negative

Height: 5' 11"

Weight: 167 lbs

Rank: Colonel

Callsign: HellSpawn

Joined: U.C. 0079

Discharged: ???

Squadron: Wraith Squadron, 108th Mobile Suit Division

Reprimands: Failure to follow direct orders under combat conditions (July 1st, 0079), Direct Insubordination (August 13th, 0080), Mutinous acts against leadership (September 22nd, 0080), Absence without leave in excess of 40+ days (June 24th, 0084)

Commendations: Meritous Action Against the Enemy (July 1st, 0079), Single-Handed Destruction of a Gaw Assault Transport (August 13th, 0080), Identification of an Enemy Spy (September 22nd, 0080), Destruction of four Zeon top Generals (June 24th, 0084)

Realizing that he was holding his breath, Duo quickly inhaled, filling his oxygen-starved lungs. Seeing a final image file, he opened it.  When the photo finished loading, Duo closed his eyes for a moment, feeling like an intruder.

It was, of course, of Kai and Nikka. They were on Earth, standing on a hill overlooking a low cliff with waves crashing against its base, forever wearing away at the ancient stone. Nikka was in Kai's arms, her head tilted back a bit to meet his eyes as he gazed down at her; their love for each other was a clear as the light blue heavens above them. An emerald and gold wedding set glinted on Nikkoletta's left hand as it rested on Kai's shoulder.

Duo opened his eyes and looked at the photo again, committing it to memory. His parents. He spoke the words softly, as if that would make it any more believable. "My parents."
In a stunned silence, Duo saved all the files titled "ANCESTORS" to his hard drive and shut down his computer. He sat in the pitch-black room for a few moments, then rose from his chair and exited the room, locking it securely behind him.

Professor G had some explaining to do.

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Please review. Any questions or comments are appreciated. Constructive criticism? I love it. Let me know what you think.

P.S. If you're interested in seeing HellSpawn and Nikka in action(i.e. Kicking Zeon ass),  click on this link and join in:


tbc. . .