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Fic: Santa Clarita: Arrivals: Dental Veracity 1/?

Santa Clarita: Arrivals: Dental Veracity
by Max

Disclaimer: I don’t own Gundam Wing. This is a work of fiction, swirled together from my memories and the fevered rearranging of possibilities provided by my neocortex.

Note: This is not so long after Duo’s First Days, before he starts school though.

Note: The foster family is still a little squishy for me, but getting more solid all the time. If you’re still following along, I’m sorry if it’s confusing, thank you for hanging in there with me.  For those of you who don’t click with my stories :) I hope you find lots of other great and interesting things.

Dental Veracity

As far as a prison went, it wasn’t really all that bad.  Missing Heero was a constant acid like burn in his soul, but he figured eventually his soul would get worn away and it won’t hurt anymore, eventually. On this particular Saturday, he was convinced that Heero was just stupid. They should have run away together. They could have been pretty much set up on Mars at this point. Still, this place out in the middle of a wasteland almost as untamed as Mars wasn’t really that bad.

The blond dude gave him all the food packets he could eat and hadn’t asked for anything for them, yet.  The really big guy came by and talked about all kinds of strange nonsense like every day, but it was harmless nonsense. Two of the women were really hard to tell apart. He’d never really spent time around any people like them before, not for more than a few minutes at a time. They smelled like flowers or fruit and they wore the most unpractical clothing, swirling fabric and glittering bits of metal and stone. They weren’t involved in any kind of traditional theater, as far as Duo could tell, but they painted their faces - not really intensely like they were going to a club or announcing affiliation with some ideology, but subtle so you could just about miss it if you weren’t really looking at them. Duo couldn’t imagine having the time and energy to make the paints, the time to apply them, and all for no discernable purpose that he could see. One of them consistently wore a long shirt that came down to her knees and had enough fabric to make a curtain. If the gravity went out, that was going to be a complete hazard and it made him nervous as fuck.  And as much as he knew in his head that the gravity wasn’t going to out on Earth, the worry about the moments when the gravity failed was deeply ingrained in him. For instance, what if some insane fucker dropped a space colony on the rock and all hell broke loose?

The third woman he understood the best of all of them. She had work to do and she didn’t give much of a shit for most things, though she seemed to be really addicted to the other four, in the same way that Duo craved Heero. He wondered, sometimes, if she was working on a cure. He didn’t really want to be cured of his feelings for Heero, even if that would be really convenient because hurting all the time sucked. The future though was some milky obscure thing and maybe, once he could get free of the government’s plans for him, he might be able to get around Heero and if Heero could fall in love with him once, he might again.

He really did feel a little softening for them all... they didn’t seem to be... harmful. They meant well. The tablet they were letting him use had all kinds of great information on it and he just sat and consumed.  There were movies and music and books, thousand and thousands of books. There were math tutorials and a hundred years of university lectures. He hadn’t left his room since the first day, with the party and stuff.  Sure there was peace now, but it probably wasn’t going to last and he didn’t want to know these guys and then see them dead in a few months. If there was going to be corpses, he liked them to be strangers. Worked out better that way.

The knock on his door pulled him out of a book on Alexander the Great and he stared at it for a moment before going back to his book. A couple minutes later the knock came again. It was a soft knock, gentle, tentative like the person wasn’t sure they had the right room. He went back to reading. If they didn’t know what they wanted, he wasn’t gonna get up to move the chair. Earthers could have all kinds of strange bacteria and they had strange ideas.

Maybe ten minutes later another knock came, still the quiet, sweet knock like the person was afraid to awake him up or something. He ignored them. Alexander the Great seemed like a strange character. Duo could totally get into the guy’s attachment to his horse though. It made him wish that Deathscythe had been a bit more... organic, or at least a little more communicative. Of the five of them, Quatre would likely be the most like Alexander. In his reading, of historical figures, Duo decided he liked Michael Faraday the best.

The next knock was harder, a bit higher on the door, and Duo decided it was probably the blond guy. If he didn’t open the door for the blond, the blond was going to come through the freaking window.  Duo sighed, pushed himself up off the bed with still shaking limbs and padded over to the door. It took him two tries to get the chair from under the doorknob, and he opened the door just enough to see out. “What?”

It was definitely just the girliest of the girls, though the blond’s aftershave lingered in the hall.  Fucker. Helping the girl out. It was offensive. The girl should take care of her own issues.  

She smiled, brightly, ear-to-ear. “Oh! You are up! I was worried I’d be waking you. We need to get dressed and go into town. You have an appointment with Dr. Pak.”

Duo’s eyes narrowed, nose wrinkling. “We’re both dressed. I don’t need a doctor. Thanks,” he said, before slamming the door and putting the chair back under the doorknob.

She banged again, but knowing it was her and what she wanted, he just ignored her. Every minute that passed was another minute off his probation.  He just had to get through 260603 minutes, give or take.

It was hard to go back to reading though. Heero.  Without Heero, the world was so empty. Duo leaned his head back against the wall and sighed. Alexander didn’t have any more appeal.  

The woman kept knocking.  He did some push ups. He’d really gotten a lot weaker while he he’d been in state custody. He kind of wished the Sweepers had claimed him and he’d just gone home, but they weren’t considered an actual state so the new Earth Sphere government didn’t recognize them. Staring at the ceiling, he wished he was home with less gravity and people who would slap him on the back and tell him what a good job he’d done. He wanted to introduce Heero to the people he came from, because it sure as fuck wasn’t these strange folk. He wanted to go to the movies with Heero and just sit in the dark, maybe hold his hand. A shiver went across Duo’s shoulders as he thought about that, about the warmth of Heero’s hand in his. Imagining Heero’s eyes, such a beautiful blue, he thought there had to be such things as souls because just thinking about Heero made him think their souls could touch.

Another knock came on the door, lower in the middle of it that shook the wood, so the person wasn’t holding back at all.  It was probably the angry woman, he decided. “My teeth are fine! No! I’m not going! Leave me alone!”

“Listen you brat,” Martha growled, genuinely put out because she’d had to walk away from her work to do this, “Do you want me to call Sandy and get you a parole violation?”

Duo sighed, rolled his eyes, grimaced, and sighed again. “No..... I’m coming.”

He quickly pulled on his boots, grabbed his hoodie, and moved the chair so he could open the door. “If it was that important, why didn’t you just say so from the beginning?”

Martha glared at M2. “Yeah. Good question. Don’t give her any more trouble. They’re just going to take some images of your teeth, and maybe clean them. I’ll get Mary to authorize two hundred dollars into your account - after Dr. Pak tells us he’s satisfied with your teeth. M2 will take you shopping.”

“Five hundred,” Duo bargained. “I want a textbook on biology and Allen made me swear I won’t try to get a copy without paying. Can I borrow a micro scanner?”

Martha’s eyes narrowed for a moment, scrutinizing him. “Title?”

“Programmable Cell Death by  Raidan Suzuki, and a couple others.”

“Did you read the genetics book I loaned you?”


“Did you understand it?”

He wrinkled his nose, shrugged. “Some.”

“I’ll get you the book. Email me with questions. If M2 or Mary ask you to do something, you have to do it. Understand?”

“Then they ain’t asking and I’m not a slave, am I?”

“No, you’re not.  If they tell you to something, it’s because it’s the best thing for you to do. Try to hear the difference between asking and telling.” She turned to her clone. “Be clearer about the intensity of what you’re asking for.”

M2 crossed her arms defensively. “Whatever. It’s a dentist appointment. It’s not optional.”

“Right,” Martha said, already having finished with the subject. “Duo come see me when you get back. We’ll see what kind of scanner would be best for your needs.”

“Really,” he asked, standing up just a little straighter. “You’ll let me use some equipment?”

“Of course,” Martha said, her mouth flicking into an almost smile. “Maybe you’ll have an interest and I’ll get you to help me with some work.”

Duo smiled, then grinned, a foot tapping. “Okay!”

“Good. Go get your teeth looked at. Dr. Pak is a nice guy.”


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