Author: Bronze Tigress <bronze @agtiger.com>
Pairings: 11+6, past 11+13, possible past 11+3
Genre: introspection
Rating: PG

Archives: www.sweetlysour.net
www.baseofoperation.org

Warnings: isei ai, language

Disclaimer: Not mine, never mine... *cries* None of it! Not the GW characters referenced, not the song that motivated the exercise (that's sung by Lionel Ritchie), and not even the plot bunny (that was Dacia's originally, although once it met my *other* bunnies, um, it kinda mutated, so beware!)...

Hello..?

...I used to be so in love with him. Blind, stupid, head over heels, crazy in love. Out of my mind.

Pfeh

Out of my mind is right. God, was I ever crazy. I would have done anything for him - but I couldn't make myself believe that the way to end war is to make war. I never could. Not after...

Damn it. That stupid kid. I betrayed his whole troop, and he still forgave me. Why? How could I deserve to be forgiven? Who could forgive what I have done? I've betrayed everyone, one way or another, and it's always been for love.

I work on it, now, every day - trying to make up for my sins somehow. It doesn't work. You can't bring the dead back. But sometimes, you can make the crazy ones sane again - or more sane, anyway.

Che

I worked then, too. Sell this one down the river, sell that pisswater to the other. Put on the pretty face and turn up the charm, because that's what he wanted. What I thought he wanted. Learned too late that I was just his best pawn, the one that gets all the way across the board. Did I get a crown, though? Hell no. Stupid manipulative bastard got himself killed. Wasn't even grateful when I tried - came back from death myself! - to stop him. Jerk. Didn't think what it would do to me. Didn't even care about me, in the end. Just a pawn, never a queen.

Bah

And you. Always a damned thorn in my side. Telling me what an idiot I was being. Thanks so much. Hah. I didn't want to hear it then, and now, it just makes me feel like more of an idiot for letting him use me that way. I know that's not what you meant to do. You never mention it now, even though the rest of your team jokes about it from time to time. Don't think I don't hear things. And so God-damned pretty. More than any woman has a right to be - except you're no woman. I always felt like a sparrow beside you - dull, drab, plain, mousy brown. Nothing to look at, nothing. Nothing.

Damn it.

I'm going crazy again, although I know it this time. Maybe it's not so bad, when you know. Maybe I can convince myself of that, too. Yeah, right.

That first time I saw you again... Everything was going to hell, all hope was lost, and there wasn't anything, anyone who could get us out of it. I didn't know those Gundam pilots were mounting a rescue attempt. All I knew was, I had 47 agents, most of them half a solar system away and none of them trained as MS pilots except Noin - and she sure as hell couldn't handle that monster we'd kept "just in case". What the hell we'd been thinking of, I don't know. You and he were the only ones who could ever fly the thing. Maybe one of the other five - but that's only thinking about it in hindsight. As far as I knew, you were dead, the other pilots - all of them - were on the wrong side again - and the Earth and the peace I lost everything for was screwed.

And then you just walked into my office. Said you couldn't stay dead while that... that man's ghost was still running amok amidst the stars. You looked like you'd been up all night for three weeks straight, crying and searching your soul for answers, and anyone else would've said you looked like Hell, like Death badly warmed over.

I have never seen anything, anyone, so beautiful in my life.

Like the answer to all my prayers, complete with wings and a halo and a big red ribbon and a silver covered platter - except you'd left that stupid mask off, for a change.

God.

My god.

But you weren't, were you? Not mine at all, never mine. Noin jumped all over claiming you, and who am I to get in the way of true love? She's always been in love with you, and I've screwed it up plenty often enough as it is. Besides, I'm not your colleague any more, am I? I'm your C.O. And I couldn't - can't - break that line. I couldn't last time, when I was the junior officer, and I sure as hell don't dare break it now that you are.

But I can always dream.

And baby, do I dream.

Maybe it isn't so bad, being just crazy enough to be able to believe the hallucinations. But it's always disappointing to wake up cold and alone.

But somehow, I don't think it's going so smoothly for Noin. Odd, that. She's been so hung up on you, for so damn long. Never heard anything out of her but "Zechs this" and "Zechs that". Lately, though, I don't know. I haven't been hearing that from her. When did you become "Merquise" in her vocabulary, and what the hell did you do to manage it? What was that screaming fight I heard about, all about, anyway? Why was she laying flowers on your grave, yesterday, when she never would believe you were dead?

Maybe I don't want to know.

No, I probably don't.

But I'm still curious. Stupid, crazy, sporting a deathwish as always, that's me. Silly kitty.

It's not her, who makes your eyes glimmer like that, like a man in love. It's got to be somebody else. And I've lost you again, without ever having had you to lose.

Damn it all to hell, anyway. I never should have let myself dream.

I knew you weren't available from the start. It shouldn't matter that you've chosen someone else than who we all thought you'd end up with. It was never me anyway, it was always just a hopeless dream.

Wait...

Are you..?

Why are you looking at me like that?

Please don't...

Oh, God, you are...

Breathe, girl, breathe.

"Hello? Were you looking for me?"

end