Two people stood in the lab looking at the remains, their faces were saddened, discouraged by the sight they saw, and they soon went outside and saw the grave. One saw a silver cross glitter as it swung on the wooden grave marker upon which it hung. It had belonged to Duo. The person carefully picked the cross up from the marker and looked at it, it was dented and dirt-covered but still shone brightly, the man had to smile. The cross reminded him of the living Duo. He turned it over only to be surprised at the name written on the back, Heero Yuy. He was very surprised in fact to see that name scratched into such a close possession. He hung it around his neck tucking it into his shirt to hide it then walked over to where his companion stood.
“Is this where the last signal came from?” asked a woman’s voice as she looked about.
“Yes.” The man replied looking at the tracker in his hand, “I wonder since I see no other corpse around why the signal just disappeared.”
Unconsciously his hand went to the cross around his neck and he clutched it tightly. Please…guide me.
“Wait, what’s this?” said the woman as a light appeared before her. It was a strange bright white light, she couldn’t figure out where it originated.
“I don’t know what this is.” Said the man then sticking his hand through and noticing that it didn’t show out the other side, “It must lead somewhere, I suggest we find out where.” He stepped through the light, the woman following him, as soon as he saw where the light lead, he knew just where to go.
Duo was supposed to be keeping a vigil over Quatre today but as tired as he was he kept nodding off. The next time he awoke Duo found the bed that he was sitting beside, empty.
“Wha!!” started Duo then seeing Quatre slowly making his making his way across the room holding onto the side of the wall for support, “Hey, where do ya think you’re going, pal?”
“I…feel like I’ve been asleep for days…” Quatre mumbled feeling the bruise on his face aching as well as the rest of him. He felt so stiff. He could see the bandages around his ribs and the sword wound as his shirt was hanging unbuttoned to not irritate them, in fact, he didn’t even see his vest anywhere.
“You have, it’s been a week. We thought that you’d never wake up after that brawl with the Tin-Can Terminator.” Said Duo as Quatre kept walking, “Hey, you. I asked you where you think you’re going.”
“Anywhere but back to that bed.” The older Gundam pilot muttered trying to walk unaided by the wall only to feel so weak that he had to put his hand back or risk falling.
“Here, let me help.” Said Duo getting up and walking over to Quatre.
I’m fine!” snapped Quatre shoving Duo’s arm away. Just then Hilde, who had been called from her residence to treat Quatre, came in carrying a bucket of water. She collided with Duo who bumped into Quatre sending them all to the floor with a loud crash.
There was a strong knock on the door; cautiously Heero opened it, gun in hand. A tall man with brown hair and a carefully trimmed and maintained beard stood at the entrance. He had one dark cold cobalt blue eye the other however was a lighter shade of blue, it appeared to be made out of glass. Beside him stood a woman with long beautiful blond hair and slim gray eyebrows. The woman seemed visibly surprised to see him but the man remained impassive,
“Who are you and what do you want?” demanded Heero gruffly.
“Who I am is of no consequence as of right now but it is of top priority that I see a…friend of mine. He should have arrived no less than a week and two days ago.” Said the man then he pulled the silver cross out of his shirt collar and showed it to Heero before tucking it back safely, “I’m sure that you recognize this, do I need to present further proof?”
“Where did you get that?” Heero demanded glowering at a very familiar appearing face. The man was wearing black boots, pants, and a trench coat that he kept carefully over one of his arms, he gestured with the other. The only color in his wardrobe was his shirt that was a dark green color.
“From the grave of another one of my comrades. I’m sure that you are aware of which one that I am referring too.” He answered staring Heero straight in the eyes as if daring him to argue with him, “Quatre will recognize me.”
“Fine.” Said Heero slowly opening the doors while still attempting to stare down the stranger, “If he doesn’t you’ll regret lying.”
Trowa fell in behind the guests with his gun level in case they tried anything funny while Heero was leading them through the house. Heero usually wouldn’t have let anybody into the house but from the noise that he had just heard from upstairs it was obvious that Quatre had awakened and…something about that man told him that he was on a mission and woe be to the person who got in his way.
When Heero opened the door, he raised an eyebrow to the scene before him. An empty bucket was rolling across the floor. It the water spilled there resided Duo, Quatre, and Hilde. All three were soaking wet, Duo was rolling around in the puddle laughing as Quatre tried his best to convince Hilde, who was fussing over him, that he hadn’t gotten hurt in the fall. They all looked up as they noticed the four people entering.
The man looked down at them, “Quatre?” He stared at the wounded pilot for a few moments, neither of them saying anything.
“You’re hurt!” came a worry filled voice as the tall blond woman pushed her way into the room and grabbing Quatre’s arm practically jerking him to his feet. His eyes opened wide.
“D-Dorothy?! How did-“ started Quatre who was cut off as he was crushed by her hug.
“I’ve missed you!” she cried just about cutting off his air and circulation.
“I can’t believe this.” Gawked Duo, “That’s Dorothy!” Then he had to clap a hand over his mouth to keep from laughing. He walked over to Trowa and elbowed the silent pilot in the ribs, “Hey Tro-man, looks like you lose out to Dorothy, such a shame too.”
Trowa glowered at Duo to silence the loud mouth American pilot.
“Do…oro….thy….” gasped Quatre, then taking as deep a breath as he could.
“Now is not the time for sentiment.” Both he and the stranger had both said the sentence at the same time. Dorothy let Quatre go then started fussing about his wounds but the noise fell upon deaf ears as Quatre stared directly into the stranger’s eyes, his own narrowing a bit in thought.
“It can’t be you.” He said finally, “You’re dead.”
“I’m not dead, I always survive. You of all people should have known that.” Replied the man.
For a moment, it looked as if Quatre would start to cry but instead he walked up to the taller man and gave him a hug. The hug was only half returned but the stranger seemed to have a sad smile. Then Dorothy got mad.
“No fair, Heero! No fair! How come you can hug MY Quatre and I can’t! What about this no sentiment time!” she shouted as they turned to see her staring angrily.
“That’s who?” asked Trowa both eyebrows raised.
“H-Heero?” stuttered Duo
“I-it’s good, to s-see…” started Quatre just as he was taken by a sudden fit of pain. He doubled over then fell unable to catch himself. Heero and Heero carefully picked up the amazingly light and impossible thin pilot and put him back in bed. Heero frowned, Quatre obviously hadn’t been taking too good care of himself lately and that might be what was delaying his recovery.
Dorothy watched him with worry as his eyes were tightly closed and his brows twitched with pain. Noticing a bottle of pain killer she took out two tablets then fetching a glass filled it with water, walking over to Quatre’s side. She brushed his long bangs out of his face and nodded for Heero to sit him up for a moment. He did so very carefully.
“Here, take this…it’ll help with your pain.” Said Dorothy in a soft care filled voice.
Trowa watched the scene for a moment then ushered the others out of the room before walking out himself, these three needed to get some things worked out so it would be best to leave them alone for right now besides Quatre needed his rest. Trowa didn’t care which ‘Quatre’ that it was he still worried. Heero watched Trowa leave and gave the younger pilot a grateful look as he left then he turned back to Quatre. The young man was asleep now, that was good. He took time to take in Quatre’s new appearance as that he hadn’t seen him since that day, one week from now. He tried to reassure Dorothy that Quatre was going to be ok but the woman just wouldn’t stop fretting. After a couple of hours Quatre finally woke back up looking a bit stronger than he had. He didn’t seem to be in quite as much pain. There was silence then Heero finally decided to ask, he had wanted to know for a long time now ever since …then, he had to know what happened to everyone.
“Quatre, do you feel up to talking?” asked Heero putting a hand on the young man’s shoulder.
“Sure…” answer Quatre slowly, “But let me catch my breath while you tell me what happened to you. Where have you been, we thought that you were dead.”
“In essence I was dead for four of the six years.” Said Heero.
“The explosion, that supposedly killed him instead threw him several miles from the explosion site and right into a coma.” Said Dorothy, “Ms. Noin found him and took him into hiding where she watched over and took care of him while he was in the coma.”
“After four years I awoke to find myself being hidden in a old cybernetics lab. Noin told me that OZ had taken control and then she told me how she had found me and of the news about what was happening now. However even thought I had woke from my coma, I was in very bad condition so Miss Noin did me one last favor before she finally died from the sickness that she had contracted.” Explained Heero then moving his trench coat aside to reveal that his right arm from shoulder to finger tip was made of Gundanium, just like Treize’s. He heard Quatre sharply intake his breath, “I spent one year to get myself back into shape since my muscles hadn’t been used in four years, then I went out searching for you and came across Dorothy.”
“I used the tracer device that Duo had created for emergency’s for when I needed to contact one of you Gundam pilots.” Said Dorothy, “Then we found that…that portal, I guess that’s what it is.”
“I see.” said Quatre.
“What happened to the others?” asked Heero.
“The truth of the matter…was that things started to fall apart when we thought that you were dead. Everything turned out to be a trap and we were failing every mission given to us…” said Quatre taking a deep breath more to calm himself than for need of air, “Wufei was the first of us to go. He kept believing that we should keep up a constant attack and make up for your loss. He believed that you died with honor. On a mission Wufei didn’t come back and later we heard from a public announcement that the pilot had self-destructed and hadn’t survived.”
Quatre took another breath to stop the shaking of his voice as he recalled the memories that he had tried to bury for so long, “It wasn’t really true. Later on a reconnaissance raid on the main base, I stopped by the containment area and found Wufei there. He wasn’t in good shape, he hadn’t been given anything to eat in weeks. So I let him out of the cell and helping Wufei I tried to get out of the base and get him back to the others for the medical attention that he needed, but…we didn’t get far before we ran into Treize. We had no choice but to fight so Wufei insisted on one last swordfight. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t talk him out of it. Of course Wufei knew that he would lose…he didn’t have the strength for it and Treize’s half Gundanium advantage after…after…”
Quatre stopped to try to slow his heart down, it was racing at the sped of light just like it had then, “I watched him die, there was nothing I could do. Wufei had made me promise not to. I couldn’t even think at first after that it was as if my mind was frozen. Duo’s Deathscythe tore a hole in the building. He said that he picked us both up and took us back to the base, I couldn’t remember anything except that Wufei had died. He said that he thought that I was dead too.”
“Wufei…” said Heero remorsefully in a quiet voice.
“Trowa was next, a year later.” Said Quatre doing his best to remain calm, “He believed that there was no alternative but to keep fighting. And so he did. During one battle Treize actually showed up. They fought but Treize ran the hand of the Tallgeese through the Heavyarms’ cockpit, sending it right through. Blood…blood…w-was..”
Heero gently squeezed Quatre’s shoulder comfortingly as the wide eyed pilot tried to get himself together, Heero knew how close those two had been he didn’t blame Quatre for his panic.
“We…we co-could barely find enough remains to make a proper burial” stuttered Quatre finding it nearly impossible to stay calm enough to continue. He barely managed to tell Heero about how Duo died, “Duo always believed that you weren’t dead. ‘I would know it,’ he would say, ‘and you would too.’ ‘The God of Death always knows.’ ”Quatre stopped and took a breath trying to get control of himself. The memories just hurt so much, it was as if each death had cause an ever increasing hole in his heart.
“You said that Treize was part Gundanium, how did that happen?” asked Heero hoping that he hadn’t already asked too much of his fellow pilot.
That question echoed through Quatre’s mind. He couldn’t tell Heero, he just couldn’t! Heero would hate him; Heero would never forgive him. The others had known and had forgiven him but he just knew that Heero wouldn’t. He knew that Heero would blame him; it was his fault anyway. He deserved to be blamed, it was all his fault!
Heero was very surprised to see Quatre start crying. The young man had struggled but managed not to cry when he was talking about how the others died. He knew that it had been a strain for Quatre to do so but that made him wonder what could be so terrible that it would cause the Arab to completely lose control. Heero watched the silver dots of light fall for a moment then ruffled Quatre’s hair comfortingly then he stood up and turned to Dorothy, “Take care of him, Dorothy. I need to take a walk.”
Heero covered his Gundanium arm with the trench coat hiding it from view and walked out of the room. He needed time to think. Since that day he had lost nearly five years of his life, three comrades and the fourth one wasn’t too far from there. With the emotional baggage that Quatre was carrying around it wouldn’t be too much longer before the sensitive pilot finally lost it. He hadn’t even gotten around to asking Quatre what he had gone back in time for or even how that this was all possible or even what kind of accident had caused him so much trauma. He fingered the cross at his neck, it had been Duo’s…the one he had gotten from Father Maxwell, Duo had never went anywhere without it. It was the only thing Heero had left of his……his…..
Trowa awoke late into the night, after 12:00 he was sure of it. He had heard something, it was…, was it the sound of someone crying? Quietly Trowa got up and walked out of his room and down the hall stopping before every room seeking the source of the sound. At first he thought that it was the older pilot, for he had cried all the rest of the day. Nobody knew why. Trowa passed the room, peeked through the cracked door, and saw Dorothy watching over Quatre who was tossing in his sleep, in a nightmare more than likely. The sound didn’t belong to him. He continued on till he came to Quatre’s room, he could hear a muffled weeping sound come from there. Quietly he knocked but received no answer he tried again but only received silence. Hearing the sound again Trowa opened the door and walked in. He saw that Quatre was sitting up with his legs drawn up; he was hiding his face behind his knees. Trowa could see the boy shake every so often; the shake came with his breath. He was crying. Trowa frowned and walked over to the bed sitting down on the edge. His brow creased with concern for the frail boy.
“What’s wrong, Little One?” Trowa asked only to feel his heart pang as the small tear filled face looked up at him.
“I-I. Dreamed….” Started Quatre then he started crying again. Trowa put an arm around Quatre and drew him close to comfort him.
“What did you dream?” asked Trowa in a soothing voice brushing Quatre’s hair with his hand.
“Death…it was every where. Everyone was… “ but Quatre couldn’t finish before he started crying again.
Trowa gently rocked Quatre back and forth as a mother would a small child until the small pilot finally cried himself to sleep. It reminded Trowa of what had happened to the older pilot, could there be some sort of déjà vu in the space heart from one ‘Quatre’ to the other? Trowa thought as he laid Quatre back down and pulled the covers around him, he could only pray that the déjà vu theory of his wasn’t true. That future ‘Quatre’ seemed a bit too unstable for Trowa’s liking, if any of his thoughts or worse yet memories were being sent to Quatre…. Trowa just sighed as he left the room casting one last look at Quatre, his blond angel wouldn’t be able to handle them and then he would be sad. Trowa couldn’t take it when Quatre was sad, it was like someone ripping at his heart with a knife.
Quatre drifted back to sleep he just hoped that he wouldn’t have to see them again. The deaths,. the other pilots dying. What kinda of dream was that to his, it was so horrible and the blood….it covered everything.
“Mission stats were sent early this morning.” said Heero over his cup of morning coffee.
“A mission?” mused the older man, “I don’t seem to recall this one. This is different from what happened.”
“Abnormalities in the timeline? Quatre must have had something to do with that.” Said Trowa his fingers interlaced and his elbows on the table as he leaned his chin on his hands.
“No, it’s Treize.” Said Quatre, his eyes tired and red from crying that night.
“Ya sure man?” asked Duo bright eyed as usual even for an early morning.
“Yes, I’m positive that it’s him.” Said Quatre, “He knows what…the elder me is up too.”
“And that would be what?” asked Heero, “We didn’t quite get to discussing that when we were talking.”
“I’m not specifically sure but I know that he’s here to change something that was done. Something…horrible…” said Quatre his voice trailing off as he quietly sank down in his chair feeling as if he had attracted too much attention.
Trowa reached over and put a hand on Quatre’s shoulder and gave him a reassuring smile, “Well let’s get this mission over with.”
“I’ll go with you.” Said Heero quietly getting up.
“You don’t have a Gundam.” Said Wufei simply.
“You’d be surprised what you find left in the desert.” Said Heero with grin, “When ever you are ready, we’ll go.”
Quatre woke later and found Dorothy asleep in a chair beside his bed. Carefully he got out of bed and put Dorothy in tucking the covers around her. He decided that she needed the sleep much more than he did at this moment. Buttoning his shirt he tucked it in then went down the stairs looking for something to eat. When he got to the bottom of the stairs he had to hang onto the railing for a moment to keep from being dizzy. As he walked into the kitchen the bruise on his face started to pain very sharply. Reaching into the medicine cabinet he took out a bottle of pain killer and took two tablets, he was sure that the rest of his aches and pains would catch up with him soon. He got a bowl and a box of cereal and ate breakfast, he didn’t eat much but then again he never did. Getting up he went and sat in one of the chairs in the main room his tired body relaxing into the cushions. He didn’t know how long that he had been asleep but when he awoke there was a note that Dorothy had gone out to buy something for dinner that night and that she would be back as soon as she possibly could.
Quatre sighed and stood up only to hear a slight knock on the door. Slowly he made his way into the other side of the room to the door, his wounds still ached but he knew that they weren’t that bad, just uncomfortable. When he reached the door, he could feel something in the back of his mind, a tingling, a minor warning. If it had been something dangerous his senses would have gone off in an instant. Perhaps it was just a side effect of the pain killers mingling with his ‘Space Heart’ sense. Still, he cautiously cracked the door open and looked outside only to be surprised. There was nobody out there, maybe it was the wind. The desert winds could be harsh. Quatre shut the door and turned to walk back into the room when he came face to chest with someone. His mind screamed with panic even though his senses were only displaying a minor danger.
“Hello, desert rat, are you home alone?”
Quatre quickly ducked to the left as quick as possible and turned a disbelieving stare to the man before him. Why hadn’t he sensed Treize?! The sense that his empathy and the ‘Space Heart’ gave him had never failed before, why had it failed to warn him this time? He back away searching blindly behind him for a weapon as Treize walked forward calmly as if he had all the time in the world. They backed into the kitchen then finally Quatre found something, bringing his hand forward, he brandished a kitchen knife. It wasn’t long and surely not that lethal but at least it was something.
“My, my. You should be careful or you’ll hurt yourself.” Smiled Treize, “Woudln’t want that would we. I’ve been watching this house ever since your younger counterpart drove me off, I saw Him arrive. Quite a coincidence that He’s not dead yet but that gives me a way to repay Him for nearly taking my life so long ago but of course I would have been dead if it wasn’t for you. I would like to have a chance to meet with Him so it seems that I need something to draw Him out. You see, I sincerely doubt that He would just go out of His way to fight with me. I believe that He needs a reason, a very good reason.“
“Stay away!” hissed Quatre crouching as he backed into a wall preparing to lunge forward with the knife.
Treize didn’t stop, ignoring what Quatre had said. Finally when he was only a few feet away from the Arab, Quatre lunged forward going straight for Treize’s chest but the man moved to the side and caught Quatre’s wrist as he went by. Twisting the wrist he forced Quatre to drop the knife, then yanked the young man toward him. Treize slung Quatre so that he hit him back first. With lightening reflexes he shot his Gundanium arm around Quatre pinning the Arab’s arms and keeping him relatively still. Using his normal hand Treize pulled a half filled syringe out of his shirt pocket. Flipping off the protective covering which was over the needle he pressed it into Quatre’s upper arm. He heard the blond hiss in pain as he tried to struggle free but only succeeded in moving the needle.
“Stop moving and stay still. This will only take a moment.” Said Treize reinserting the needle and injecting it’s contents into Quatre’s arm, “See, only a moment.”
He let Quatre go and the Arab jumped away putting a hand over his throbbing arm. Treize just stood there and waited. Quatre glowered at him for a moment then his vision became blurry. He blinked several times and rubbed his eyes but they still refused to clear. He looked back up at Treize accusingly only to find that he was now experiencing double vision. The ‘Space Heart’ sense had silenced completely. He suddenly felt weak and fell to his knees dizzily.
“Wh-what the Hell did you do to me?” he demanded trying to keep his mind from clouding over.
Treize smiled as he watched the young man fall to his knees, “did you wonder why you couldn’t sense me through that damned empathy of yours?” Quatre didn’t answer but Treize knew that he had, “When Little Dragon purchased some new medicine this morning before he left, I switched the contents of the pain killer with some CGZ pills. You took some of those thinking that they were pain killer but in reality it dampened your empathic ability allowing me to gain access to the house when the others left. I just injected you with an anesthetic, you know what happens when you mix those together, I’m sure.”
“Damn you, Treize.” Hissed Quatre as he sank the rest of the way to the ground, his mind reeling far into the blackness of unconsciousness.
“Don’t worry, dear little desert rat, I won’t let the drugs kill you. I need you alive for a while longer. I owe you my life after all.” Said Treize with a smirk. He watched as Quatre’s eyes fluttered then finally shut, “That’s it, just go to sleep, you’ll need it.”
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