Author: Calic0cat
see chap. 1 for warnings, notes, disclaimer

Fragments + Chapter 8

I held Heero's trembling body close and wished I'd been able to think of another way to handle that. I'd pretty much just tipped him off that those dreams weren't dreams at all. That they were memories. Depending on which ones he'd been reliving, that could be pretty damn tough to find out. And I was going to be extremely lucky if this didn't end up messing up his trust in me. We'd originally gotten off to a pretty rough start after all; I mean, hell, I'd *shot* him. And not just once either. If he remembered that but not the times we'd helped each other out... This could be very bad.

But what the hell else could I have done? I couldn't risk him talking about those dream- memories; if someone *was* listening in - and I was pretty damn sure that the bugs and hidden cameras that had been added to our suite in the past couple of days weren't just part of the decor - there might be enough info in his dreams to let them get a positive ID on us. Assuming that they didn't already have that.

I shifted Heero so that I could put my lips very close to his ear. With surveillance equipment as good as it could potentially be even this was a slight risk but he needed something more than what I'd given him so far. "I promise I'll explain when we go home. But we have to stay here a little longer and there's a lot we can't talk about here. I'm sorry." I kissed his ear and his cheek and his temple, hoping that would hide the fact that I hadn't exactly been murmuring sweet nothings in Heero's ear. Faint though it was, I was still clinging to the slight chance that they were merely suspicious of us. Hoping that if we continued to act like a couple of newlyweds, they'd just keep watching us and not take action. Hoping.

Well whatever Heero's dreams had been about, he'd evidently decided that he still trusted me. He stayed wrapped in my arms for one hell of a long time before finally stirring to pull away.

Now that Heero at least knew there was *something* strange going on, I figured that he might as well know what sort of weaponry he'd been carrying around without even knowing it. I managed to get him into one of the parts of the room that was a blind spot for the video surveillance. Then I very, very quickly showed him how to convert his belt buckle to the tiny knife and lockpick it really was and how to get the small shuriken out of his shoe heels. I wasn't sure whether he'd be able to actually use any of that stuff even if he managed to get it out but at least now he knew it was there.

Heero went a really unhealthy shade of gray and swayed again at the sight of the weapons - which I was guessing meant he'd had another flash of confusing images - but he repeated my actions to confirm that he could get the things out himself. I knew all of this had to be confusing as hell for him but the whole situation was so damn complicated I didn't even know where to *start* as far as clarifying matters went. At least not as long as we were under surveillance.

I wished for the hundredth time that we weren't on a fucking resource satellite in the middle of nowhere; if we'd been on Earth there would have been one hell of a lot more options. As it was, there wasn't even anywhere I could take him to get away from the damn security cameras that surveyed practically every inch of public space at the hotel. Even the gardens we'd wandered the previous day were under constant surveillance. From a safety standpoint, it was great; crime at the resort was absolutely nil. No muggings, no assaults, nothing. From a privacy standpoint however, it sucked. Where the other guests would at least have privacy in their own rooms, we didn't even have that. Which left me with absolutely nowhere safe to discuss things with Heero.

I have to admit that I'd hoped - in vain, unfortunately - that Heero's memory would be jolted back into existence by finding out about his hidden weaponry. Well, the little of it I'd chosen to show him that is. I didn't think he was ready to handle finding out that all the personal hygiene products we'd brought with us were in double-walled bottles with less innocuous things than deodorant and shampoo between the walls. Or finding out that the portable music player laying on the bedside table was receiving, recording, and encoding the sounds picked up by the bugs Heero had planted in several locations, getting the data ready to be transmitted for analysis along with the legitimate voice feed whenever we made a check-in call. Or that the little handheld gaming system he was now playing solitaire on was really the fastest little piece of computing power you could ever want, specially designed and optimized for hacking into all sorts of types of computer systems.

And even if I'd thought that he *was* prepared to handle that kind of thing, I still couldn't show it to him. Not with the bugs and cameras that I knew were in our suite. Hanging around in those few small areas that were out of camera range would get suspicious pretty damn fast. Just showing him the few things I had was a bit risky; the wrong exclamation in reaction to them could have spelled disaster. But he needed to know and fortunately his reactions were silent ones.

As long as Heero didn't remember *anything*, it was safer for him to remain completely in the dark. He would act more naturally that way and things were way less complicated and confusing for him to deal with. But now that he was starting to remember bits and pieces, it was more important that he know enough to realize that he had to be careful. That he couldn't talk about the things he was remembering. That there was potential danger all around us.

I hated seeing the open happiness he'd been displaying be replaced by worry and fear. Seeing the confusion he had already been experiencing replaced by an even deeper confusion. Seeing faint flickers of the "real" Heero begin to superimpose themselves over the incredible, affectionate man that I'd been getting to know.

But they were only faint and only flickers. The instant that his face went blank and cold as his fingers pulled one of the shuriken from its hiding place. The single heartbeat that it took for him to copy my demonstration of how to hold the shuriken ready for throwing. Then those flickers of the Heero I knew were gone and he was Odin again, looking even more confused and frightened. Alarmed by those split-second moments when his body knew what to do even when his conscious mind did not. When procedural memory took over despite the fact that the actual training episodes were forgotten.

And for the first time I truly understood what Catherine must have gone through when first I, then Quatre, showed up at the circus seeking Trowa. That surge of protectiveness. That desperate wish to leave the past in the past, to let all the pain be forgotten.

But unlike Catherine, I knew better than to try and stop the inevitable. Knew too, from things that Trowa had said, that even the painful memories were better than the blankness of not knowing. Better than that feeling of loss, of *being* lost. Of being nothing.

Though I didn't know whether Trowa had ever been as happy during his amnesia as Heero had been at times over the past couple of days. I knew that the person I had gotten to know over that time was probably what Heero would have been like without all the training. Without all the experiences that had made him build such strong emotional shields.

I had learned to love "Odin" just as much as I loved the Heero that I was more familiar with. And I couldn't help hoping that at least a little bit of that more open version of Heero would manage to survive him regaining his memory. That maybe a little bit of "Odin", maybe even the bit that seemed to care for me and to be attracted to me, the bit that I almost dared to hope might even love me, might stay.

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