Author: Asuka Kureru
Warnings for this chapter: Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Slight Quatre
mental torture maybe? If you really have moved into the gutter (damn,
the place is getting crowded), small 3+4. Just a little micro bit.
Notes: I kinda borrowed a line from Shinigami no Kamikaze (author ID 23706
on FanFiction.net) ... it will be the one with the (*). Go read her 'Duoesque
translated in English' and 'Handy Heero dictionary on tape'! That's a
command! Shoo!! 'Tis goooood funnyficcie, children. (well, err, mebbe
you can wait after having read this before you go ^.^;)
+ Part 1
[ Twelve days after the introduction ]
The cobalt-eyed Gundam pilot got off the bike he had borrowed the day
before and pushed it toward the garage's doors, grimacing at the strain
the effort put on his still partially damaged muscles.
Yuy tested his shoulder's condition a last time with a series of careful
rotations then snorted, annoyed at its lack of cooperation. He knocked
the pre-established code on the door and waited, though not for long.
A racket worthy of an elephant running amok in a porcelain shop announced
that the braided baka had heard and was preparing to open the door. Cautiously,
he stepped back.
Which was all the better for him. Duo Maxwell sprung out of the house
like a devil out of its box, grinning from ear to ear. The door missed
Heero by a few centimeters.
"Hee-man!!! You late or am I dreaming?" he exclaimed, a malicious
glimmer in his violet-tinted blue eyes.
"Hn." was Heero's only response.
He was annoyed to be caught being less than perfect...and by him above
all. So what, he was two minutes late ...wasn't his fault if his shoulder
gave him a hard time.
As Heero didn't seem inclined to do so by himself, Duo caught his fellow
pilot by the arm and dragged him inside the house, taking him by surprise.
Duo had often annoyed the other boy enough for the Wing pilot to get angry,
but for what he had done, he didn't expect such a violent reaction. Before
he could understand what was happening, he was hearing a slam. He saw
Heero getting paler and clutching his arm with his other hand. Unwilling
to believe it, Duo raised slowly his own hand toward his own cheek, already
covered by an angry-red hand-shape which was bound to show even the digital
imprints, if one looked close enough.
"Baka!!!" the brown-haired pilot hissed at him. His voice however
wasn't carrying as much real annoyance as... as an attempt to conceal
his pain? But... But even if he had had his leg completely severed, his
expression wouldn't have changed ... Duo knew it all well, he had been
there when the other had set his own leg!
Damp red spots were appearing and growing on the T-shirt's sleeve. The
little blond boy, who was smiling friendly at Heero just before from the
living room changed expression and jumped out of his seat.
"Heero! You're hurt?!" Quatre exclaimed while moving forward,
Trowa and Wufei sat up straight and stared at him. The Japanese pilot
shrugged with the shoulder that didn't hurt to get them to understand
all the insignificance of the problem.
"Nothing serious," he let slip against his will when he understood
that Quatre would just NOT let him off the hook before being reassured
that he was all right.
"Yeah, my arm's been blown off, but it's only a flesh wound (*),"
Duo snickered in his corner, still nursing his cheek.
"You're sure, Heero?"
Crap, Quatre was annoying, a real mother hen! If there had been a problem,
he would have said so, right?
Okay, maybe not.
Heero realized that he was losing his grip on his feelings; he berated
himself. He wasn't supposed to have these sort of reactions. Feelings
were weaknesses; to show you had them was giving away an opening and advantage
to your enemies. In front of Quatre, it wasn't so serious, they were allies,
but he couldn't let his training go to waste just for that excuse, it
had cost him too much already.
"OZ?" Trowa wondered aloud, his visible eyebrow twitching faintly.
"Not even that. An animal in the woods." Heero admitted, looking
as annoyed as he could. Which wasn't that much, if you didn't know him
enough... but the pilots did know him enough to be wary of his visibly
Heero put down his backpack and sat down on an armrest to look at the
bandage wrapped around his shoulder. Since blood splotches were visible,
it was safe to say that Duo had reopened the wound.
"Oops, I'm sorry," DeathScythe's pilot murmured, looking sheepish.
"Didn't know ..."
Heero glanced blankly at him, then turned his attention to his shoulder
again. Bah! The wound was at such an inconvenient place that he himself
had reopened it thrice already, even when being careful. And with a bully
like Duo, he had it coming.
"An animal?" Wufei frowned, skeptical.
'For a simple animal, to succeed in hurting the terrible terrorist
Heero Yuy... An infuriated grizzly maybe?' he thought with a hint
of the beginning of a smile on his lips.
"A wolf, sort of."
Trowa shook his head, still staring at Heero.
"There haven't been any wild wolves for centuries now. It's a nearly
"I know", Heero answered. "It could have escaped from somewhere."
"You said 'sort of'?" inquired Duo, who knew better than anyone
that his teammate seldom uttered one word more than what was strictly
"Too big and too long, with too sharp claws, too...thick for a normal
wolf. It was more than a meter high at the shoulder, and three long from
the muzzle to the end of the tail. A hundred and fifty pounds at least.
Heero raised his head and glanced at his teammates.
"...And way too smart."
"What do you mean by that?"
"It was doing crosswords? It asked you a physics question you couldn't
answer? It would be an enormous hint of extraterrestrial civilization..."
Heero struck the braided idiot with his famous Death-Giving-Glare™
before returning to more serious matters.
"It knew what a gun was."
"You asked him?"
"Ok, ok, I'll shut up...but I have a right to ask, right? ... Yeah,
'cause if I didn't ask all the time, you'd never say a thing! And ..."
The American boy jumped back when the Japanese's hand rose slowly toward
his gun, and went to stand on the side of his hurt arm, hoping that his
reflexes would be less dangerous on this side. Heero got back to the subject.
"It was deliberately putting itself out of the bullet's path. And
it dodged by rolling onto its side."
Trowa straightened on the arm of the couch he had perched on and stared
at the ceiling, thoughtful. As the animals specialist amongst them, or
rather the only one who had any kind of knowledge about the subject, he
knew that Heero was asking for his opinion, not that of the others.
"You need extensive training to make a canine act like that ... And
from its physical characteristics..."
"I was thinking along the lines of a new breed of attack dogs. Modified
genetically, or maybe just by selection."
"Mmm..." Quatre mumbled. "Yes, that's plausible. The question
is, why did it attack you? I only see two solutions: it was ordered to,
or it decided by itself. If someone ordered it to... Well, either it was
a general measure, or you were specifically targeted. We'll have to research
this lead, even only for precaution."
"What do you mean, 'that it decided by itself.'? It was only an animal,
why would it have decided it couldn't stand Heero? Isn't as if it had
had to stand him..."
Heero wondered a second if he was dreaming. DUO found that HE was hard
to stand?! When did he pass through the looking glass into the fourth
"When a dog is trained to kill", Trowa answered, "It has
difficulty loosing the habit. If someone taught it to attack people, it
only followed what its conditioning ordered it to."
It was a logical conclusion... So why was he under the impression that
something didn't fit?
"Well, I'll require an investigation on this matter. For the moment,
your bedroom is at the far end of the corridor, you should go put down
your stuff, Heero."
As he was getting up to follow the advice, Quatre offered to do his bandage
anew. He accepted with a shrug. It was more practical than redoing it
And since they would not let him alone as long as his bandages weren't
changed, he preferred not to let Duo propose himself as a helper. He was
dangerous with scissors and a bottle of Mercurochrome in hand.
* * *
As soon as the young golden-haired Arab let him alone, Heero let himself
fall on his back on the bed. The trip had tired him out more than he would
have believed. His illness resistance was rather lower than normal. His
antibodies too, he added after a series of especially resilient sneezes.
Perhaps he was ill...
He closed his eyes and tried to relax.
Like every time he closed his eyes since the attack last week, he was
immediately stared at by two nearly fluorescent green eyes, floating in
a black fur so thick and long it nearly made it a mane. The wolf's coat
was so dense, and yet it didn't hide in the least the steel, rope-like
muscles that ran all over its body ...
He played the attack another time in slow motion in his head. There wasn't
a sound to warn him of the incoming attack, not a rustling of leaves,
nothing at all. It was easy to believe that the wolf didn't have any solidity
before materializing at his back, like a ghost.
And that burning glare, like an emerald flame...
And the crimson blood on its white fangs gleaming with saliva ... his
He remembered the sudden emptiness appearing in the beast's eyes when
he pushed the trigger. The vindictive flame slowly becoming a spark, then
a dying gleam... Hypnotized, he only thought about freeing himself when
all living glimmers had disappeared in the emerald irises.
The black body seemed even more impressing spread out on the ground with
all its length than it had seemed when it was crouching to jump on him.
The dark fur was darkening so much more against the blood and bits of
skull and gore on the grass.
Heero fixed this picture in his head to better look at it inch by inch.
He felt he was on the verge of putting his finger on the little something
that was bothering him so much ...
"Hey, Hee-man! We're eating, you comin'?" Duo exclaimed while
barging into his room.
"Not hungry", Heero groaned, turning on his belly not to see
K'so, this idiot had interrupted his train of thoughts just when he was...
Duo caught the end of his braid and tickled his palm pensively. Normally,
Heero didn't care if he was hungry or not, he ate by habit, to keep his
body at top performance. By the way, he could swallow anything, as long
as it was digestible, without ever being interested in the taste. The
braided pilot would never have believed that he could let his moods be
of influence on his behavior ...
To be truthful, he wouldn't have believed that, besides the homicidal
mood, he did have moods ... May as well be talking about an iceberg
"Heero, come on, we ordered four pizzas, we'll never finish them
if you don't eat your part..."
He put a hand on his shoulder, carefully choosing the one that wasn't
hurt. But he got pushed back all the same. A resounding slap repelled
his hand, violently.
/MY personal space! MY room! MINE!/
"Get. Out. Of. My. Room," the Asian teenager stressed with a
worrying interval between each word. "Fast."
"But, Heero..." Duo protested feebly while rubbing his hand,
taken by surprise by the intensity of the normally so cold voice.
"This is MY room and I don't want you in it, OK?! Get out!"
Duo gave up. Heero was already dangerous enough to toy with in normal
times, but when he was so ticked off and unbalanced, even if Duo hadn't
done anything yet ... Wasn't worth the hospital bill.
"OK, man", he answered grumpily, "When you're in a better
mood, you warn us...We'll have to tell the media."
He heard a growl, and hurried toward the door, without looking back.
* * *
Duo rejoined his friends, sighing. What had crawled up his spandex to
unnerve him like that, when he was normally so controlled and cold? Duo
had firmly believed that only a mission failure could provoke this kind
of response in the soldier... and now he went and changed everything,
just because he felt like it. It was not funny; Duo hadn't even begun
to annoy him...
"Isn't Heero coming?" Quatre asked, troubled.
"Naah, says he's not hungry... Dunno what pissed him off..."
"Maybe he 's just fed up with you, Maxwell", Wufei answered
coldly while crossing his arms on his chest in a defensive posture.
"But I hadn't done anything to him yet! I swear, I hadn't even started
to annoy him..."
"Must have decided he didn't want to let you get started..."
Duo grimaced, then his expression changed to a more normal smirk.
"I believe I'll have to content myself with your company, my dear
The darker than normal glare he received from the Chinese boy nearly consoled
him fully of not being able to test his survival reflexes with Heero.
After that, the evening took place rather normally. It was not as if the
Japanese participated that much in their social life, after all.
* * *
Quatre Raberba Winner had nightmares rather often, given his most abnormal
life for a teenager, the battle's incertitude, his family problems with
his father, his habit of worrying over everybody, and above all his gift,
a kind of empathy, his 'Uchuu no Kokoro'.
But like that one, more than rarely.
If it were a regular occurrence, he would have lost his mental sanity
to it long ago.
'He was in a wood, and it was dark, so dark... A thick mist darkened
everything, muddled his marks up. He felt as if he was watched from all
sides. But he didn't know who, how many and from where...
The woods seemed infinite, inextricable, the few paths ended in the
middle of nowhere after having taken turns left and right illogically
...The path should have crossed itself once or twice already, but nothing.
But the worse wasn't this feeling of total disorientation, like if
he had entered a world entirely illogical where he didn't know the rules;
nor was it the physical sensations, the Siberian cold, the branches that
shingled him, nor these presence who didn't reveal themselves; it was
the atmosphere. What emanated from this wood, from the beings in the wood.
Hunger, anger, hate ... Enjoyment, looking at him advancing, tripping
on the roots, caught in the branches that seemed to want to keep him...
So much enjoyment...The thrill of the stalk. And a primal, animal cruelty
These were the feelings of a predator hunting. And the revelation came
like a ton of bricks...
The prey was no one other than himself.
He never saw his hunter, only the gleaming circles of his cold irises
in the depths of the woods. But he heard it behind him. He knew it was
doing it on purpose. To play a little before the kill.
He ran for hours, praying and begging the being who followed him to
spare him, but he knew it didn't listen, maybe even didn't understand,
and it was slowly getting closer, amused by his futile attempts.
Finally, he got himself blocked. Before him, a dark, bottomless lake.
And the dream-Quatre didn't know how to swim; or couldn't, scared by what
was lurking under the cold surface of the water. There was ice on the
lake, but it was too thin for him to walk on it, and too cutting. Nowhere
to run anymore ...
He turned around, trying to see his assailant...
His shoulder was caught in the beast's jaws and it was shaking him
left and right and he was going to die, he could feel the jaws tearing
up his shoulder, and he screamed, he couldn't do anything else
and woke up with a jolt, and there was a hand on his shoulder shaking
him and he was still screaming.
As soon as he realized that it had just been a nightmare, he shut up,
a hand on his mouth, and turned toward the one who had awoken him.
Trowa was sitting on the edge of his bed and stared at him in silence,
"Daijobu ka, chibi boku?" he asked in a low voice, strangely
more at ease using Japanese to ask the question.
Yet, Trowa wasn't Japanese, but some of the mercenaries who had raised
him were and he found easier to ask this kind of questions in this language.
Somehow it seemed less personal than asking in the language they normally
used between them.
"Yes, I'm feeling better, thanks Trowa," the blond-haired Arab
answered. "It was just a strange nightmare ... You know, the kind
where something is chasing you and you don't seem to be able to run fast
Trowa nodded once, briefly. He knew intimately this sort of dreams.
"I didn't cry out too loud? I don't want to wake up the others..."
"No. I was awake before that, that's all."
"Oh...sorry to bother you. I'm better now. Thank you, Trowa..."
After a fast inspection from head to toes, Trowa was convinced that his
friend was well enough, and left the room. Quatre fell back on his bed
and threw a forearm across his eyes.
"... Better... except that I'm not planning on returning to sleep
anytime soon ...Allah, what an intensity..."
[part 2] [back to
Asuka Kureru's fic]