Don't Drink the Koolaid 3/?
by Max aka Pink Whirlwind
Disclaimer: I don't own Gundam Wing.
Warnings: violence, Duo rage, Duo torture, enough shift in tech that it might be a little AU
Time... he'd been in hell for centuries now. His back burned like fireworks, nerves flaring everywhere the whip had wrapped around him, flaring nerves with pain that would flash and echo with other strips and he had no idea how long each one hurt or if they'd ever stop.
The father had gone.
That was important.
The father wasn't real.
The devil keeping him company had wrapped his braid around his throat like a scarf. His head ached. He was dry, unable to cry, not sweating. Everything had gone so wrong.
"I promised," Duo said, head tilted back so he could get the thick mass of hot hair away from his neck.
"Yes," the devil said sweetly. "Tell me what you promised? I'll give you something good if you do."
He wondered how his lips could feel like they were going to catch fire. "I promised Heero that I won't kill anyone I didn't have to."
"But you have killed?"
"Yeah," Duo said. Had, have, will the differences really lost any distinct meanings. "He's gonna be a doctor."
"See, now that's a good boy. Repentance gets you rewards," the devil said.
The reward was ice cold, plastered against his belly. He jerked, vision going white. The convulsion shook him, but he didn't mind, he just really wasn't there.
One level up, in another very secure sell, though not as hideously unpleasant environmentally. The single occupant sat meditating on a thick circular. She wore a simple pale green kimono, her long dark hair fanning out around her. "Hello, Renar."
"Your majesty," he said with disgust. "Did you sign the renunciation papers?"
"No," she said, her breathing completely undisturbed.
"I'm going to find your brat. When I do, I'm going to bring her before the parliament and you will be denounced. The leadership of this country will return to my branch of the family."
"If you release me and the boy whose screams keep polluting this space, you will live at least through tomorrow."
Prince Renar's jaw tightened, his fists clenched, his hair stood up and vibrated as if he could turn his whole being into a weapon that would ruin his self-righteous cousin. "He's going to keep screaming. We're not going to let him die, Ash. He's going to keep screaming and begging. I'll flay the skin off of him and print new skin for him. I think he's maybe seventeen. He's got the most beautiful violet eyes. Just sign the papers. You can take him and go back to the United States. I'm sure he'll tell you where your baby is that way. I'm sorry about killing your lover. She really did look just like a man. Ash, I know you don't like this. I don't to hurt you, Ash, but I was meant to rule this country and I will."
"Love exists in within and I will always be with my love and my child, but there are many lives depending on the leadership of this country. The Palace will retain no personal wealth. This country has suffered from years of wars. I will heal this land and protect my people."
"You can't heal anything! You're a socialist and a theocrat! You can heal nothing!"
"You have violated the law. You can heal nothing. I have foreseen your death and my only regret is that the one who kills you shall grieve for it."
Rage obliterated reason. The back of his fist hit the side of her head, sending her sliding several feet across the floor. "Who did you see attempting to hurt me, you lying whore?"
She lifted up just enough, her kimono covering her paralyzed legs. She covered her bleeding mouth and smiled gently at him. "Why does it matter? There must be so many."
Duo's screams started again, echoing up into the Queen's cell which was designed as a sound chamber.
"Just sign the papers, Ash. You can't save the country, but you can save that boy who did everything he could to save your daughter and you can save your daughter. That ought to be enough."
"HEEEEROOOOOOOO," Duo's scream was blood red, reverberating in the small room.
"I require a private suite," Heero said coldly to the steward. He wore a navy blazer, white shirt, matching tie and slacks. He looked like a medical student or a business man, certainly not a freelance vigilante about to take on a whole country if need be.
"Of course, sir," the steward said, leaning Heero down a hall and away from the small seating area, away from the several passengers who had preceded him. "The suite is fully stocked with any and all items Mr. Winner thought might be useful to you, sir. We ask that you remain in your seat, within the safety webbing until we have completed the climb."
Heero's nose twitched. He didn't expect they could accelerate fast enough to make that an issue for him. He'd been on one of Duo's modded L2 skidders once when that had been an issue, but he expected that his lover had been showing off for him. He'd even managed to look smug and contrite at the same time over the broken nose and arm that had resulted. The memory left Heero smiling softly. "Noted. We should depart now."
"Very shortly, sir. We are waiting on two further passengers."
"Now. Unless their passage was paid for by Mr. Winner, now would be better. You will be compensated, either competently or memorably, depending on how quickly I reach my destination."
"I understand, sir," the steward said with an elegant bow. "Mr. Winner's patronage is highly prized."
Heero mimicked the highest status men he'd been rubbing elbows with. "As it should be."
The shuttled began to taxi within moments.Heero hadn't even had time to pull out the micro lathe he'd brought. He needed new, specialty, probably non-lethal weapons.
The woman was graceful, wearing a dark blue Chinese coat with broad sleeves, and black gi pants. "Your Highness," she said respectfully, palms pressed together as she bowed.
Renar sighed, looked up from his computer, from the resource allocation contracts he'd been reviewing. "Do not tell me that damn American is dead."
"No, Your Highness," the woman said, still holding her bows. "It is believed that the Palace is under attack."
"Don't be an idiot," he spat. "The generals are detained, her army disbanded. The Palace is held by my personal guard. I don't care if peasants are storming the walls. Soon enough I'll have them all chained to a workspace in a factory, providing wealth for our nation. If we kill a few of them, it bares me no mind."
"Twenty-seven of your personal guard no longer are transmitting life signs. No other disturbance is detected, but it is very likely that either American or Preventer Special Forces are attempting to recover the detained agent."
"So he's not dead yet," Renar said with a small. "Send out an alert that we should be looking for some spooks. There are five thousand skilled soldiers in my personal guard. Find out if there are intruders or a fast acting ebola, but don't bother me with trivial things."
"Yes, Highness," the woman said, backing away, still bowed.
"Idiots," he mumbled under his breath.
Trowa stepped quietly up behind his target, grabbed the back of his head, his chin, and sent him into the Great Dark before his next breath. The three of them moved deeper into the palace. Having read Wufei's report, the obvious conclusion was that the palace had already experienced a coup d'etat. Trowa didn't think the soldiers they were neutralizing were fully invested in their mission. They certainly weren't as effective as they should have been.
Quatre knelt on one knee, a code breaking device connected to the security system blocking their path to the next objective.
Trowa guarded both Heero and Quatre. Heero scanned a different tablet. "O2 is detained on level 4. He has been under interrogation for 56 hours. General Suzuki is on the same level. We should extract Duo, stay out of the local politics."
Quatre retracted his connectors. "Duo was firmly in support of the established government."
Heero did not know why Duo would be concerned about the government of a small Asian country, but he did not doubt Quatre's information.
All of them wore black tactical gear, boots that could kick through most doors and helmets with face shields that provided information about the environment that went way beyond what a human eye, even Heero's eyes, could gather. "Duo first, or he may not be alive to care about the government."
Trowa and Quatre both nodded very slightly, movements that Heero couldn't see, but that their connected helmet systems represented as affirmation on the interior of his face shield.
Quatre opened the door and the three of them slipped through. The blond carried only a single 9mm, but empath or not, he rarely missed his targets. His mate carried two 45mm guns, custom made with built in silencers. Heero's twin weapons shot darts, his own design with gundanium tips and enough vitamin enhanced sedative to lay out an enraged opponent. They had promised they won't kill and he knew he would if it was the difference between saving or losing Duo, but he would try with all his will to leave everyone alive.
Duo swayed, too dehydrated to be nauseous, but with a rising clarity. The demon tormenting him didn't really know what he was doing. The demon had smacked a hydration pack on him, but it wasn't nearly enough. Duo smiled.
"What's so funny you little bastard, uh? Getting to like being whipped? You're a kinky little dick, aren't you?" The demon leered, smirking, his face really close to Duo's, until he reached out and grabbed Duo's crotch.
Panic and raged mixed with pain. The demon looked like a demon, red face, fangs, black ash eyes. Duo jerked back and for just a second he was eleven again, detained by Alliance troops, death in the air. After 56 hours he was no longer the same size he was when they'd forced the cuffs on him. His right arm pulled free. The left cuff released as soon as the connection to the right broke. Time distorted. He grabbed the cuffs with both now free hands and smacked them down on the demon's head. "Don't touch me there," he screamed.
He hit the floor with both feet, thick metal cuffs held in each hand. The demon staggered back, bright blood running down his now paler face, but Duo didn't process the color change. "You will not touch me!" Using the cuffs like clubs, he forced the demon back, followed the vile creature to the floor. "You will not touch me! You," he screamed, having abandoned the cuffs in favor of his own fists which he used as punctuation, "Will. Not. Touch. Me!"
Hands and strong arms hooked around his and jerked him off the demon. His scream was pure rage, but neither of those holding him gave him the slightest leverage. Holding him off the ground, he kicked and snarled. "Don't touch me! Don't fucking touch me!"
The new demons talked calmly to him, holding him without hitting him, but he knew it was just a trick! "I'm going to kill you! All of you!"
Cool fingers touched his bare bruised chest. A sense of calm soaked into him, ruining the rage that was keeping him together. "NO! Don't touch me!"
The calm kept coming, soaking through rage, then over the panic. Duo sagged, sobbing, now utterly defenseless and ruined, violated in the past, re-violated in the present and he just wanted to die. "Kill me then, just kill me!"
One of the demons let him go, but the other new demon pulled him close, both arms going around him with a terrifying gentleness. "Duo," the demon soothed. "I'm Heero. I'm here."
"No," Duo groaned, trying to push away, "I haven't saved your sister yet."
Heero kept hold of Duo. The lights came up in the room. The air conditioning turned on. "I only care about you," Heero said, lowering them both to the floor. "Only you. I'm so sorry I ever gave you any other idea. If you don't want me to be a doctor, I won't be. Tell me, anything you want, that's what I want."
Exhausted, laying back against Heero's strong arm, as Heero caressed his face, Duo sighed. "You really are Heero, aren't you? I didn't want to come home till I could show you that I am a good detective, good at what I do. I found your family, your bio family. you have a twin sister."
"Will you come home with me?"
"Yeah. If you want me."
"I want nothing more." The whole exchange had taken less than a minute. Time Quatre used to check back into the palace's computer system, while Trowa guarded them both.
"Entire plan is changed," Quatre said urgently, "The general is free already. Renar is dead."
"I killed him," a voice from the door said, a voice that sounded very much like Heero's voice, just not as deep.
Heero leaned over Duo, shielding him, blue eyes glaring. Trowa took position between the doctor, computer expert, and the woman in a power chair who didn't look nearly as dangerous as instinct said she was.
"Who are you," Trowa demanded.
"I am a simple person who just wishes to see my country safe, my people healed. I foresaw your arrival. I wish to see all of you safe and to see Duo healed. Were it not for his strength of will, the country would have been lost."
"She's yur twin sister," Duo wheezed. "Heero, you better fix me. It'd be shitty to die like this."
"You're not going to die," Ash and Heero said at the same time. He glared at her. She smiled.
"Okay," Duo breathed, safe in Heero's arms, he let himself slip back into unconsciousness.
Duo took a long breath, found it didn't hurt, then took another. That was the worst dream he'd ever had. He shuddered, pulled the blankets closer and decided that he would get up.. he'd get dressed for Heero's damn dinner thing and not make an ass out of himself. Even if the blankets he clutched weren't the same as their blankets at home, it made more sense than being separated from Heero for months, finding out Heero had a twin, and a niece, literally going to hell - up, gonna get up, go to dinner, not make an ass of himself. That sounded like a really good plan.
Laughter bubbled in from a room that wasn't their one room apartment. Duo opened his eyes, narrowed them, and wondered where in the hell he as that had gilt wainscoting and velvet drapes on the four poster bed. "Heero!"
Footsteps sprinted, and there was Heero, wearing a blue tee shirt and black slacks, and a red and white santa cap.
Duo sat up, pulled the covers to his chin, tears pooling in his eyes. "I've gone insane."
"No," Heero said, moving to the bed, reaching for Duo's hands, "No! We're still in the palace. Ash provided me with excellent medical equipment and you had too severe internal injuries to do well with a flight out, so we stayed. It's Christmas. You and I have adopted Ebony. I am biologically close enough to Ash that I can claim paternity. I couldn't wake you from the medical coma until today. Merry Christmas. I hope you're not angry with me."
Duo held out a hand, smiling very slightly. "You are an arrogant, self assured, over cocking bastard, but I love you more than I love anything else in the universe and I dno't want you to change even a little."
"Good," Heero said, giving Duo's hand a squeeze before pulling him close. "I don't know if I could change, but I'd try if you asked me to. It is Christmas, which I'm told was an important American holiday. Everyone is here. Even Wufei. There is to be dinner and presents."
"Did I kill the demon?"
"No. He will be fine, though he is being tried for sedition and war crimes. He needed hours of surgery to reconstruct his face. Do you understand that I love you completely and nothing is as important to me as you?"
"Yeah," Duo hedged. "I don't understand why."
"I shall invest time and energy into demonstrating why."
"Are you coming," Ebony asked, peeking around the door. "Come on Mr. Duo. There are lots of veggies!"
"Okay! Okay," Duo said, grinning, faking it a bit as he held Heero's hand very tight.
She ran off, laughing happily.
"I didn't get you anything."
"You got me biological family and a daughter. Wait till you see what I got you."
"What'd you get me," Duo said, feeling more relaxed, more interested.
"Let's get you dressed and you'll just have to wait and see like everyone else."
Duo's eyes narrowed with the challenge. Heero distracted him by leaning in to kiss him, their first kiss in months, sweeter and warmer than either of them could have imagined. "Okay, that was a great present."
Let me know if you'd like to see an epilogue.