Title: Two Roads Diverged

Part 7/?

Author: Truth

Archive: A whole bunch of neat places but my complete fic collection can be found at GW

Addiction

www.geocities.com/fenris_wolf0/

AU - The sequel to It's the Pilot - Wherein we see the Gundam Wing Universe as it might have

been, had Duo not been sidetracked just before Noventa's death. First person stream of

consciousness/POV.

 

Rated PG-13 at least.

 

Warning: We are going to go very AU here, although I do want to stick as close to the original

time line as possible. From here on out, massive liberties will be taken with the various

characters as I try to decide how they will react to these new situations. Think of it as an exercise

in psychology. Fer instance, the Wufei in this fic has already lost his complete faith in justice and

fairness.... Which will change the direction of the plot significantly.... Just think about the major

events in the episode or two following the Noventa assassination....

 

Multiple perspective switches once again. As usual, if any of them are unclear, please mail me at

dhaunea@yahoo.com and I'll tell you who they are.

                                       

Notes: Due to the massive number of complaints that I have received over the amount of time

that it is taking me to forage through this piece, I have decided to take the original GW timeline

and stuffed it out the nearest airlock.  Not that there was a great deal left of it, anyway.

 

Thanks to Dragonic Ice, Bronze Tigress, KC, Sparky, Ebola, Amida, Tyr, Lady Douji, Cassima

and everyone else who has so patiently put up with the loooooong pauses in this story and

continued to encourage me anyway.

 

**

 

Two Roads Diverged

Chapter 7

"Let's have a reality check here, people."

 

**

 

My speculation as to the nature of my 'special assignment' was spot on.  It wasn't good.  In fact,

it was probably one of the least fortunate things that has ever befallen me. 

 

Which is saying quite a bit.

 

I reported to Colonel Une's office at the appointed time to find a promotion of sorts awaiting me.

I went from aide to special operative in rather less than sixty seconds.  Apparently my recent

actions and exemplary record had impressed no less a personage than Treize Kushrenada

himself.  Colonel Une explained that they had need for someone of my age and talents and, as I

had made such an impression upon my superiors, they were going to promote me so that I might

take this assignment.

 

Perhaps I am a pessimist, but I found myself waiting for the other shoe to drop.

 

I didn't have long to wait.  The Colonel gave me a file and told me to read it.  It was marked at a

clearance level that I had never even heard of, and it was obvious that I was expected to commit

whatever I read to memory.  This file was not going to be allowed to leave her office.

 

"Lewis Jones?" I asked, leafing through the thin dossier. 

 

"You sound disappointed."  She gave me a considering look.

 

I shrugged.  "I suppose that I expected that the Gundam pilots would all be eight feet tall and

covered with muscles.  He seems... out of place."

 

The Colonel frowned slightly.  "The Commander wants him kept under close observation at all

times.  We want him to feel at ease with us, however, and he felt that by assigning someone of

his own age to watch over him might improve matters."

 

"How am I to keep him occupied?" I asked, placing the file back on her desk.  "I don't imagine

that you assigned me to him simply to sit outside a locked cell all day."

 

"You are correct," she told me, deepening her frown.  "He is to be granted the status and access

of an OZ cadet."

 

"In other words, he is free to move about the public areas of the base and to use the non-restricted

terminals."  I bowed my head in thought.  "Is it your intention to have him join the cadets?"

 

"No."  The Colonel handed me a thin envelope.  "Simply keep him out of trouble and encourage

him to talk."

 

The envelope contained various keycards, permits, passes and authorizations.  Obviously,the

young man in question was not going to be allowed to hold or use any of these things without my

direct supervision.  Wise.

 

I saluted and left her office.  The prisoner was waiting in the outside office when I emerged,

seated between two hulking guards.  He was already dressed in a cadet's uniform not too

different from my own OZ uniform.  He glared at me as I came to a halt before his captors.  I

produced the necessary documents from the envelope and he was released into my custody.  The

jailers left and he and I were left staring at one another under the eyes of Colonel Une's

secretary.

 

"You have been placed into my custody," I told him.  "However, you have been given all the

rights and privileges of a cadet.  This does not include the use of communications equipment,

however."

 

He nodded, once.

 

"Come with me," I told him.  "I will show you to your quarters."

 

I made him walk in front of me, his hunched shoulders the only indication that he was not

comfortable with this arrangement.  Perhaps he was remembering my propensity for knives.  I

am not sure how he got here, or what ill fortune placed him into my custody, but my mission has

just become more complicated by several degrees of magnitude.

 

He cannot betray the others.   I will have to be constantly on my guard to keep betrayal from

touching me. 

 

It will be twice as difficult and dangerous for me to fulfill my mission now, but somehow his

presence here reassures me.  I think that I will rest easier of nights knowing that I can lay hands

on him if I need to. 

 

Literally.

 

I have been assigned to share his new quarters.

 

**

 

Zechs has found himself a Gundam.

 

Why am I not surprised?

 

They are working on the damn thing night and day, trying to make it functional so that he can

fight us on a more or less equal footing.

 

We are spread too thin to make sabotaging the project practical.  It's a shame.  Zechs is difficult

enough to deal with _without_ a Gundam.

 

This means that we will have to work more quickly and more carefully.  Duo and Wufei will

have to work twice as hard and move twice as fast to keep him from catching up with them.

 

I would not enjoy facing that particular opponent on a totally level playing field.  Luckily, I will

never have to.  Zechs is a very dangerous man, but even he cannot force that antique to match the

specifications of the Wing Zero.

 

This suddenly trips a very dangerous line of thought.  I will have to have a word with Howard

and O.

 

We never did catch that woman from L2 and the Deathscythe Hell would not accept the Zero

system that they had designed for it.  Which leads me to wonder....

 

Where is that system now?

 

**

 

Heero has disappeared into hacker paradise somewhere.  Quatre began his own mission last

week.  Trowa cut all lines of communication yesterday.   Wufei still isn't speaking to me.

 

I hate my life.

 

After Wu's revelation that he'd perhaps over-reacted to what had happened at that hellish party, I

had hoped that things would go back to normal between us.  Or at least whatever passes for

normal when you're a couple of psychotic teenagers concentrating on mayhem and destruction.

 

No such luck.

 

I don't know if it's because he was still mildly in shock that night and didn't mean what he said,

if he's too embarrassed to talk about it or if he's decided that it was all some huge mistake.  But

he's still not speaking to me.  Other than the fact that he will discuss mission parameters or

whose turn it is to run errands, you'd think that the boy was mute.

 

All right, so it _is_ my fault.  It _is_ something that I shouldn't have done.  It _was_ a damnfool

thing to do, and I knew it.  But I just couldn't help myself.

 

Let's have a reality check here, people.  I'm 16.  (It was an arbitrary decision on my part, I'll

admit.  I was tired of being 15.)  So I'm 16.  I'm an impulsive, hormone driven, closet romantic

who desperately needs a little stability in his life.  I'm also a murderer, thief, hacker,

mechanical/programming genius, Gundam pilot who nurses an incredible modesty on top of it

all.

 

The point is that my age is no excuse.  I knew better.  I really, truly knew better.  I had forced

myself to turn my back on a deeply disturbed young man armed with a sharp object while I

calmly pried his life apart and told him that I would betray him if necessary.

 

It may be a screwed up way to build trust, but fuck you.  It worked, didn't it?

 

The point is that I risked my life to get Wufei to trust me.  And then I threw it all away for a few

minutes of utter jealousy and stupidity.

 

I should _not_ have kissed him and I knew it at the time.  I tried to rationalize it, but I should

have just slapped him in the face.  It's a better cure for hysterics and won't carry as much

emotional baggage in the long run.

 

But I did it anyway.  Maybe it was the confession, maybe it was the way he looked at me.

Maybe it was nothing more than the fact that he had risked everything for me, and I had done the

same for him and here he was, ready to throw it all away.

 

Ready to die.

 

I just wanted to shock him out of it somehow.  I didn't mean it....

 

That's not right either.  But I just, I mean I can't....  Damn it all!

 

It was a _mistake_.

 

And because he has totally shut me out - and let's face it, I don't have the courage to force the

issue - I don't even know exactly what happened between us. 

 

I kissed him.  And it wasn't a one-sided thing, either.  Wufei _is_ a hell of a good kisser.  But

let's face it, I took advantage of him.  He wasn't in any emotional state to turn away whatever

comfort he could get and I pushed that for all it was worth.

 

Don't get me wrong, it never went any further than that and it probably never will, even if he

_does_ start speaking to me again before we're both 80.  I may be sixteen, but sex doesn't

exactly make my top ten list of things to think about, speculate over or indulge in.

 

I have much more important things to think about.  Like, say, living to see 17?

 

I've had to _make_ time to think about it, lately.  It's not exactly a comfortable topic to have to

pick apart logically.  Am I gay?  Maybe.  Am I attracted to Wufei?  Definitely.  If he ever

decides to speak to me again do I want to pursue a relationship?

 

Logically?  Not in a million years.  We both have far too much to worry about.  Look at how

badly a single kiss - Okay, maybe more than one - has done to us.

 

Emotionally?  Um, maybe?  I like Wufei and he _is_ attractive and good company, but....

 

There's always a 'but' in my life. 

 

...but he's still almost a total stranger to me.  Hell, I didn't even know that he'd been married

until a few months ago.  I _still_ don't know why he's so important to his family.  Hell, the way

they've been trying to marry him off I can just _bet_ what their reaction would be to me!

 

Most importantly, I don't know how _he_ feels and at this rate, I never will.  But if I've learned

one thing from all of this, its that I should never, ever push the issue when it comes to Chang

Wufei.  All I can do is wait for him to decide to come back out of his shell.

 

Hopefully before one of us gets killed.  I hate sappy deathbed scenes.

 

At any rate, while Wufei is trying to remain as professional as possible, living together has

become hell.

 

And it's about to get a whole lot worse....

 

**

 

I will keep a diary because it seems the most practical way to keep track of my descent into

madness, for I am sure that is going to be the result of this latest disturbance in my once tranquil

life.

 

Yesterday I bid my family farewell.  Today I saw my brother for a moment or two in a crowded

shuttle terminal on L3.  We managed a quick embrace and a few words before we were forced to

part.  Tomorrow I shall begin a new life on Earth.

 

According to our spies, the OZ organization is well aware that Chang Lian was substituted for,

that indeed a real person exists by that name.  He resided in Paris at the time of the events that

took place both at the school and on L5.  He has dyed his hair and goes by another name, but he

is well known and admired by his friends.  In fact, he has recently set up housekeeping with

another young man.

 

Last week, Lian moved to Vienna and sent for his younger brother, who is rather obviously

persona non-grata at his previous educational institution and not terribly popular with the OZ

troops on L5 simply by association.

 

In point of fact, the only part of that entire story that is true is that Lian _has_ shacked up with

another young man.  They're happily ensconced somewhere on L4 at this very moment.

 

Which leaves me holding the bag.  While I have always dreamed of seeing the Earth, this was not

exactly what I had in mind.

 

Tomorrow night I will arrive in Vienna to be met by my 'brother'.  Once again, I will be living

under the same roof with Duo Maxwell and my cousin, Wufei.  Another hair-brained scheme

cooked up by the revered elders of my family in an attempt to convince my cousin that it is time

to come home and accept the bride that they have chosen for him.

 

The fact that she is deeply in love with someone else is dismissed as both inconsequential and

'girlish fantasies'.  They refuse to accept the fact that this is simply not meant to be.

 

And I am the one who must bear the brunt of this stupidity.

 

For the first time I begin to realize just why Wufei has both a temper and an icy attitude.  The

elders have certainly made my life a living hell, and I am not even the focus of their attentions.

What must _he_ have borne at their hands?

 

I will find out, tomorrow.

 

**

 

End Part 7

 

**

 

Duo: You _wouldn't_ do that to me. _Please_ say you wouldn't?

 

Truth: I thought you were getting on with Chen?

 

Duo: That doesn't mean that we want to live together.  And wait'll he gets a load of Wufei.  I

should just slit my wrists now.

 

Quatre: You're not going to just _leave_ us like this, are you?

 

Truth: Sorry.  The death threats were piling up and I had to write _something_.

 

Heero: You could have made it longer, you know.

 

Truth: I'll make the next one longer.  I promise.

 

Duo: As if we're going to believe _that_.

 

Truth: *sighs*