When Fallen Angels Fly + Part Six (cont)

+

While he worked to set another explosive, the last, Duo couldn't help but admire some of the completed and near finished Mobile Suits sitting in various slots throughout the facility. They were no where near as impressive as the Gundams, of course, but they still had a nice look about them. They were probably the only things he regretted destroying in here.

So far, his part of the mission had been relatively easy. The soldiers didn't pay much attention to him, despite the fact that he was carrying around a small, black bag. Duo found that pathetic, but who was he to complain when it made his job easier? He hoped that Wufei was doing as well as he was, and managed to squelch the small amount of worry that cropped up by telling himself that Wufei was more than capable of taking care of himself, not to mention the Chinese pilot would be highly affronted should he think otherwise.

Still, they had much to settle between them. When they got out of here, Duo was of a mind to force Wufei's hand. The Chinese pilot had been holding his cards too close to the vest. He was getting to the point where he was tired of waiting, tired of wondering, and damn sick and tired of thinking. He had never been overly fond of thinking. It led to too many other things. Things that almost always weren't pleasant.

"Yeah, Wu. Give me the easy job. I'm going to be twiddling my thumbs for the next..." he looked at his watch, "eight minutes."

So far, however, so good.

"Hey, what are you doing?" A voice demanded behind him, filled with a suspicion that killed his streak of luck.

Spinning suddenly, using his body to block the explosive as he discreetly kicked his bag behind him, he smiled brightly. "Just checking to see if the support is secure, sir."

The soldier's eyes went from Duo to the support and back again. He did not look convinced.

Shit.

"And," he went on, "it is! Amazing, huh? They make these things better than they used to. Last place I was stationed, one fell down right on our heads! Nearly took out half the building. It was very messy," he continued, his tone getting conspirational, "a lot of blood and stuff. I had lunch right after, but I couldn't eat. Some people were, but man..."

The soldier blinked, as if he wasn't quite certain what to make of Duo, or what to do with him.

Face hardening suddenly, he snapped, "Why are you off post? Who is your superior?"

Duo tried the grin again. It had worked in tighter situations.

"I told you, support was making me nervous. I wanted to check it to see if it was okay."

Bad move. He shouldn't have mentioned the support again. It drew the guard's attention to it. He was beginning to think this was going to end ugly. Wufei would not be pleased...

"What do you have back there?"

He was right.

"Nothing. I told you-"

"I don't believe you. You're coming with me," the soldier interrupted, reaching out for him.

Duo side-stepped the outstretched hand, all hints of amiability sliding away.. Expression dark, he held his hand up to ward off further approach.

"I don't think you're taking me anywhere."

As quickly as he could blink, the soldier drew his gun. "I will if I have this."

Damn, this really was going to get ugly.

Without wasting a moment, as he figured he really didn't have a moment to waste, Duo darted forward and struck downward. The edge of his hand caught the soldier just on the inside of the wrists, startling him and sending the gun flying from his hands. One swift punch brought him low enough for Duo to grasp either side of his head and smash his knee into the guard's face. Agility and size giving him the advantage, Duo scrambled to jerk the borrowed gun from the holster at his side and struck the soldier against the head.

He fell like a stone.

Unfortunately, the commotion had stirred curiosity, and before Duo could do much else, he was caught in a hail of bullets. Pulling back, he returned fire, wishing he had a machine gun. The magazines in those would certainly last longer than this pathetic pistol.

Gritting his teeth as a one shot blew past his head a bit too close for his own comfort, he looked around, finding the only somewhat decent cover within reach was the support. Great. With his slowly dwindling luck, they would no doubt shoot the explosive and start the party prematurely.

Another shot struck the pavement at his feet.

"You are so running out of luck!" He snapped at himself, ready to make a run for it. A few yards away there was a large piece of metal...

That was when pain exploded in his knee.

White hot pain that left him gasping for breath and feeling as if someone had reached into his skin and wrenched his knee cap out physically. His leg buckled beneath him, sending him crashing to his good knee, the other splayed beneath him at an odd angle. Tears of pain stung his eyes, but he refused to let them fall. He had felt worse than this. He could take it.

He had been mistaken when he thought the guard was out for good. The man had somehow managed to find a discarded pipe, and had used it as a weapon. Duo thought he did a pretty effective job of smashing his knee in, at any rate.

Lifting his own weapon, he struck downward with relentless fury, striking the man this time against the temple. A red welt formed instantly, ringed with blood, and he knew that the man wouldn't be moving any time soon.

Clenching his teeth against the pain, he knuckles white against the ebony of the gun, he returned fire, noting that the soldiers had pulled closer. He was seriously outnumbered now and it was getting worse. The alarm had just went off. Wufei was definitely going to kill him. That was, if these guys didn't do the job first.

The communicator. It was still in his pocket. He only had to get it out of there and press it for Wufei to hear what was going on. Though he certainly wasn't looking forward to the litany this would bring down upon him, he could definitely use the back up.

Chucking his empty gun aside in disgust, he lunged for the one he had knocked from the soldier's hands, hissing in agony as his injured knee struck the pavement. Firing off a few more shots to keep them at bay, he reached into his pocket and wrenched the communicator out, thumb firmly pressing the button as he rolled out of the way of another shot. It hit the pavement, sending up chunks of it. One of these times, that was going to be his head.

There was a snap and then, "Maxwell?!"

"Wu-man, I'm knee deep in shit with no signs of getting out! Wanna come lend me a hand?"

"You-"

And then the communicator was shot from his hands.

+

"Maxwell?! Duo! Dammit, Duo?!" Wufei tossed the communicator aside in disgust, hardly noting when it hit the wall and shattered from the force of the blow.

Brows slamming together in a look of complete fury, tinged with a desperate fear, he resisted the urge to slam his hands down upon the keyboard to make the insufferable computer go faster. He should have known Duo could not keep out of trouble. It followed the boy the way stray puppies did little children. And at the moment, he did not know whether Duo was alive or dead, and it scared him in a way nothing had ever before.

Vaguely, outside the door, he could hear the sound of an alarm. The entire facility was likely to be alerted and on the prowl now. He had to get this sweep finished and find Duo and get them out of here. Because he refused to believe that the other pilot was anything but alive. You couldn't kill Death.

Fist clenching and unclenching, he bent over the console, counting himself lucky that the file had not been transferred out of here. If this disk would just hurry up and erase the entire system, he would be free to leave. They could not chance that it would somehow be sent out before this entire place exploded. He had already had to work his way through a few interesting, but annoying fail-safes the engineers had installed. They were far from stupid.

And now, they were dead.

Steeling himself against he tightening that caused in his gut, Wufei pushed the image of them from his mind and concentrated on the screen. It was nearly finished now. Only a few more seconds and... There! He slammed his hand against he ejection knob and jerked the disk from the computer nearly in the same move. Spinning himself around, he sprinted across the room to force the door open and leap into the hall.

"You had better be alive, Maxwell," he snarled, "or I will kill you myself!"

The hall was swarming with soldiers.

"I don't have time for you!" He snapped, shoving all his weight forward to smack the first one in the chest hard with the palm of his hand.

As the startled soldier fell aside, he used the brief element of surprise still on his side and took out the nearest other one with a swift kick to the head. Dropping low at the last second, gunfire blasting over his head, he swept the feet out from under another, and brought his elbow down hard upon his chest, ignoring the unmistakable crack that signified broken ribs.

He leapt back to his feet in one effortless move, keeping the motion by continuing on into a run. The flash of bullets was all around him, and when one glanced his arm, shredding fabric and drawing blood, he ignored the sting, not even breaking stride. His purpose was to reach Duo, and nothing short of death was going to keep him from doing that. And like a charging bull, he tore through soldiers, striking them aside with the ease of adrenaline coupled with the mentality of a man on a mission.

Graceful, even in a frenzy, he threw himself to the side, avoiding a chest full of lead. Kicking up, he dislodged the gun from his opponent's hands and then swung back around, catching him behind the head with the opposite foot. The man stumbled to his knees, and Wufei leapt over him, not bothering to finish what he had started, as the man probably expected. He had more important things to do.

As he was tearing around the corner to the stairs, the sound of distant gunfire somewhere in front of him grew louder than the crossfire behind him. Clenching his teeth, he reached into a small pack secured at his waist, withdrawing what appeared to be three round balls. Duo had given them to him in the event that they were needed. Now seemed as good of time as any. Letting them settle securely in between his fingers, he leapt over the last three steps and skidded around the corner he had seen Duo take before they parted.

Wufei continued on down the narrow hallway, finding that it led into the open area they had seen on the map. Dark, narrowed eyes took in everything as they swept out in front of him. The sounds of guns firing echoed dully from nearly every available surface, and as he drew closer, he caught a flash of dark brown against lighter brown. Duo. He was on the ground and surrounded by soldiers who were fast closing in.

There was a ramp off to the side, just up against the wall. It would take him directly to Duo's left, provided the American pilot didn't move. Willing himself to move faster, though his lungs were burning and his muscles were stretched beyond relief, Wufei practically leapt up the steps to the ramp and without so much as stopping, let alone taking a moment to catch his breath, he hurled himself off and flung his hand out, letting the balls fly free. They stuck the tightly packed group of soldiers, exploding in a blur of smoke and fire. Ordinarily, that kind of formation would have served them well. In this case, it had worked against them.

He hit the ground inches from Duo with a noticeable grunt, shocks arching through the soles of his feet and up his calves.

"You really know how to make an entrance, Wu," Duo praised, as the Chinese pilot helped him to his feet and skirted them around the confused mess of soldiers.

"Your injury will slow us down," Wufei remarked without emotion, saving all that was pressing against him to be let out for later.

"Yeah, I know. Too bad Heero isn't here. He could carry me out of here," Duo remarked carelessly, his face dotted with perspiration as he leaned heavily against Wufei, trying to keep up, but wracked with pain.

The lines around Wufie's mouth grew taut. "We don't need Heero."

Without further word, and before Duo could comment on that, Wufei swept him up into his arms, managing to neither falter nor looked strained.

Duo blinked up into Wufei's face. "Uh... are you sure you can do this?"

Gunfire erupted behind them.

"We have no choice," Wufei responded tersely.

Duo wished he was in any kind of shape to savor this moment.

They burst out through the front, and into another barrage of gunfire.

Cursing, Wufei spun and pressed them close to the building, running along it as bullet after bullet struck just behind his head.

Duo was looking ahead. "Wu! There's a jeep up there! We can hot-wire it!"

Nodding, the Chinese pilot took them toward it, fatigue having yet to catch up with him. That would come later, when the edge of adrenaline wore off.

He did notice, however, that Duo didn't have his bag.

"Do you have the detonator?" He demanded, throwing them against the side of the jeep.

Duo patted his pocket. "Right here. You have the disk?"

Wufei's lips twitched despite themselves. "Right here."

Shoving Duo rather unceremoniously into the back of the jeep, he leapt in and ripped wires out carelessly, tension lancing through him when bullets struck, one hitting the windshield and cracking it.

Twisting some together, he was rewarded when the jeep leapt to life. Throwing it into reverse, he tore up the pavement, jerking it back around to plow through any guards that got in his way.

They drove through the barriers, and then the gate itself, nearly tearing the bumper off in the process. But they made it out.

"Now?" Duo asked faintly from the back seat.

[part 5] [back] [part 7] [back to Singles a - k]