Title: I Will Never Let You Fall
Author: Karen, The Huntress
Disclaimer: I do not own Gundam Wing or its characters
Pairing: 1+2
Warning: angst, language
Part: 1/1 complete
Feedback: Always appreciated.

Author's Notes: Hello. Here is a sequel to Standing on the Brink of Love. I want to thank everyone who replied to the first part, I appreciate your encouraging feedback. Please enjoy your reading. Hugs. Karen, The Huntress.

I Will Never Let You Fall (Sequel to Standing on the Brink of Love)
by Karen Hickman

"Noooo."

I lay in the dark and listen to him whimper in his sleep. Over the last month there have been increasingly restless nights, more trembling until his bed shakes.

As visions of war claw through his dreams Heero is being pushed closer to the edge of madness. That crazy old scientist thought that he was creating a Perfect Soldier but all he did was strip Heero's humanity and leave an empty shell behind.

Wearily I slip out of bed. I wish Heero would let me sleep with him it would make these midnight sessions a lot easier. Shit look how he's tangled up and his hands are so pale as they grip the sheets.

"Always."

What in the hell does that mean? It breaks my heart to see him this way.

During the day Heero hides his torment well. His eyes are blank slates that show only cold detachment. He is stoic, so damn focused. He believes that the barriers he builds between himself and the world are impenetrable and that no force can breach his steely will.

But I have always been good at sneaking in. Stealthy movements are my means of insertion. Gradually I have chipped away at Heero's walls. At first he barely acknowledged my presence then he reluctantly allowed me to be his brother-in-arms. Day by day I have narrowed the gap using a hell of a lot of tenacity.

"Alone...all my...life" he mumbles as his bow creases from the stain of maneuvering through the labyrinth of despair.

You are not alone Heero. You have not been alone since the day we met. I have watched from a distance, observed your daily struggle as you totter on the edge. Every night I lay awake wondering when it will happen--the final nudge that will send you into the void.

"Heero?"

He draws in a hitching breath and quickly turns toward the wall. "Go away." he hisses then mutters something about "damn fool".

Fool or not, I care. Even if it means risking his wrath I will not be deterred. When Shinigami set his sights on a target nothing short of death will delay the shot.

Easing down on the bed I untangle his damp body and carefully touch his shoulder. "Heero?"

"I said go away dammit." There is a sense of panic in his order. His body becomes tense sending a shiver down my spine. If his training kicks in, if instincts override reason then I might not have long to live but I will not stop now.

"Heero look at me." I put the compliant tone of command in my voice. The only way to get passed Heero's headstrong barriers is to spur the soldier within to immediately obey.

Tightening my hold I coax him with firm pressure and he finally gives in. Misty eyes won't meet my anxious sight, he doesn't want me to see the tears and think that he is weak.

Having his childhood snatched away by an assassin named Odin and his youth ruined by that bastard J. is tearing at his heart. Losing himself to that senseless conflict called war has shoved him closer to the abyss and that damnable forced facade is keeping me at bay.

Whether Heero wants to admit it or not I am his refuge. I am his safe haven when the demands of duty batter his soul and he starts sinking below the swamping tide.

I reached down and cup his face. "Heero do you trust me?" The question brushes breathlessly on his face as my lips hover inches from his.

Heero hesitates. Trust...that is asking a lot. I am asking the Perfect Soldier to give up part of his control, to put his life in my hands and trust that I will not let go. But doesn't Heero understand that through his surrender he will take back his control and become the master of his fate?

"Duo, I...."

Before he can answer, before the rejection rips another piece out of his heart, I press my lips to his. The kiss is chaste. I want to convey caring not passion or lust. I want Heero to know that I am his anchor, that my love is sturdy against the crashing waves and that I will never withdraw my support.

Lying down beside my soldier I wrap my arms around his shivering shoulders and pull him as near as physically possible. He goes limp in my sheltering embrace as he lets go of the loneliness and pain and fear.

He lets me take his hand and I give it a reassuring squeeze. With my promise of protection I lend him the courage to look over the edge. My love will bind up his wounded heart and together we can exorcise the demons of duty and the hellhounds of war.

I put my mouth close to Heero's ear and in the dreamless darkness I make my commitment, "I love you."

I offer him a lifeline, "I will never let you fall."

I Will Never Let You Fall--Karen Hickman--August 2003

Thank you for reading!!