Disclaimer: We do not own any of the GW characters portrayed in this story. No money was made from this, and this was done totally for fun. Original Characters belong to us.
Archiving: If you do not have previous permission, please ask. Will also show up on my fiction page: http://www.millenicom.com/nagisa/ninsfic
Notes: This story belongs in my Life Rules series that can be found at my website (addie above). It's not necessary to have read the other stories to understand this, but it wouldn't hurt either. Just for timeline references, this story occurs several hours after "Zap!."
Additional Notes: The web version (addie above) of this story contains the pictures that are described within.
by Ninjababe and comet
The stairwell door on the fifth floor swung close as Ronnie stepped into the hallway and walked towards the guys' communal rooms. She paused at the door to listen. 'Yep,' she thought, 'they should all be in there.' Taking a deep breath she knocked on the door and waited. Duo's voice answered the knock with an "it's open." Ronnie opened the door and poked her head around it to look at the six guys sitting at the open bar and game table.
"It's safe," Quatre said, a smile on his face.
An "uh huh" was Ronnie's only reply to that comment as she walked all the way into the apartment and took the empty barstool next to Wufei. As soon as she sat down Duo noticed the portfolio case she was carrying and gave her a very large smile. "Is that what I think?" he asked.
"Yep, photo proofs."
Before Ronnie had even finished her response, Duo was up from the table and standing in front of Ronnie, ready to relieve her of the portfolio case. "Let me see," Duo said as he walked back to the table with the portfolio.
"Duo," Ronnie said, "the top set belongs to you. There are proofs for the rest of you in there too." Looking over at Zechs she added, "The favor I asked of you is in there as well."
Zechs reached across the table and took the portfolio from Duo, who was openly staring at the top proof, a picture of Heero not looking like one would expect. Zechs took a couple of the proofs out and passed the case over to Quatre.
While Trowa and Quatre looked through the proof sheets, the conversation turned backed to the lasertag game from earlier that day, more specifically to the fact that neither side was able to win because the two flags had disappeared. Flags that were now sitting in front of them on the table. Ronnie asked if this was before or after she ran into Wufei and Duo in the stairwell. Wufei told her they were sure it was after that incident, but it wasn't clear if the flags went missing before or after he and Duo found Quatre and Zechs dead in the hallway.
"You died in the hallway?"
"They killed each other," Wufei said.
Ronnie turned her head to stare at Wufei for a second, then she shook her head and held up her hand to stop any further explanation, stating that some things just didn't need to be explained. The conversation returned to the two missing flags.
Before Zechs or Quatre could formulate an answer to cover up their little secret, Quatre said, "Whoa Zechs! Has Noin seen this yet?" Quatre held up the proof so the others could see. It was a very nice shot of Zechs, taken from above. His face wasn't visible, but it didn't need to be for the picture to speak to the viewer.
Zechs tried to look anywhere but as the pilots, he settled for looking at Ronnie who already knew the answer.
"She doesn't?" asked Trowa.
Duo smiled. "She will."
"Not until the showing at the Galleria," Ronnie stated. Clearly looking at Duo when she repeated, "Not until then."
"How'd she talk you into this?" Heero asked.
"Probably the same way she talked each of you into this," Zechs answered, pointing at the proofs the pilots held.
Six heads turned to Ronnie, who shrugged and smiled, but didn't say anything.
Quatre sifted through the pictures looking for the group shots that he knew were in the portfolio. He stopped his search when he found a single shot of Wufei on a motorcycle. "Nice shot," he told him, holding up the proof for everyone to see. Wufei nodded and something about it being Ronnie's idea.
"That it was," she said. "And I like that shot, so no making the proof disappear."
Trowa took the proof from Quatre's hand and put it back in the portfolio case while at the same time putting another proof into Quatre's hand. Quatre looked down, "Hey, that's me," he said. "Where are you?" he then asked.
Trowa shuffled through the proofs until he had three of them spread on top. "Hey Tro," Duo said leaning over the table and picking up a picture, "I like this one."
The picture Duo had picked up was a black and white headshot of Trowa. One eye hidden behind his hair, the only color in the picture was one clear emerald eye that starred out at the camera.
Quatre turned the picture around to look at it. "I do too. Can we have this one?" he asked Ronnie.
Ronnie nodded. "It's also one of the pictures for the Galleria," she said.
Trowa took the proofs of Quatre and held up two. "I like this one," he said quietly, indicating a head shot of Quatre. "It makes him look even younger," he joked.
Ronnie and Duo both snickered, when Quatre hit Trowa in the shoulder. Taking the chance to comment, Zechs picked up a picture of Noin and said, "I want this one."
Trowa looked over at Zechs. "I wasn't done yet," he said. Looking back at Ronnie, now only holding one proof, "I'd like this one." The picture had Quatre's chin resting on his left arm. His right hand rested on his knee, with his left elbow resting on top of it. His shirt was unbuttoned, and while he wasn't exactly smiling, the look on his face was of someone thinking about something very pleasant.
Ronnie smiled at Trowa. "You got it," she said.
"Are you using one of these group shots for your showing?" Wufei asked. He'd moved over to the table to get a better view of the pictures.
"I like the one on the stairs," she said.
Wufei sorted through the proofs until he found the one she was talking about.
"You looked at the camera," Wufei said to Heero before turning to Ronnie. "How many shots were in this series?" he asked.
"What's the shot number?"
"Seventh shot in the series, ten shots total," she said. "It was the only one where you were all casually looking at the camera."
The others moved to get a better look at the proof. "It looks like we were just out for the day or something," Quatre said.
"I take you guys like the proofs," Ronnie said. "And a lot easier than the ones we did for the Preventers last year."
"Oh yes!" Duo said. "Without a doubt. They're...they're...hey don't pull on the braid!"
Ronnie smiled at Heero. "I think he likes them."
"Yes." Heero nodded. "When can we pick up the actual pictures?"
Ronnie paused to think for a moment. "The shots for the Galleria showing, I'll need you guys to sign waivers. And, before you ask, I'm not giving them permission to sell them, just show them," she said, accepting her portfolio from Wufei as he retook the seat next to her. "The others, I have some of the framing ready, thanks to Pete down on two. Hm, Monday afternoon?"
Heero nodded. "Thank you."
"Not a problem," she returned. "So, you guys have almost two months before the actual tournament, you going to do more of these practice games before you beat that little garrach?"
The look that Duo gave Ronnie almost had her wanting to run for the door. "Speaking of Stephen," he said, "I didn't know the two of you were dating."
"Excuse me?" she asked.
"It would appear that the latest rumor among the staff at Circle10 is that the two of you have been dating," Duo told her.
"He probably started it," they said in unison. Ronnie continued, "Why that little...I'll wring his little. If he thinks..."
Wufei leaned over and gently took the portfolio case out of her hands, so she wouldn't damage the work inside, while whispering something in her ear. She nodded then smiled. "Okay, I feel better now."
"What did you say to her?" asked Trowa.
"That she could 'wring his neck' after we win the tournament," Wufei said.
"You could shoot him and put us all out of our misery," Ronnie said.
Duo shook his head in a negating manner. "Unfornately, he has his uses."
"For now," Heero added.
The next ten minutes were spent discussing ways to get embarrass the hell out of Stephen during the tournament. Several ideas and plans were brought up and then discarded as being a bit over the top. Wufei finally suggested that they just left Stephen embarrass himself.
"I like it," Duo and Ronnie said in unison, causing both to laugh. Duo chose that moment to continue with, "By the way, you and Noin are going to play with us at the next practice round."
"I'm what?" Ronnie asked, then shook her head that an answer wasn't necessary. Instead she looked at Zechs and asked, "Have you told Luce this yet?"
"Well," Zechs said, "no."
Duo looked over at Zechs and grinned. "I see a running theme here, Blondie," he said.
"Can I be there when you do?" Ronnie asked, an innocent smile on her face.
Zechs ignored both of them, but knew they were was right. Convincing Luce might be tricky.
"Does that mean you'll practice with us?" asked Quatre. "We realise that neither of you can play in the tournament, but we thought we should up our practice teams."
"And throw in a little variety," added Trowa.
Heero nodded. "And a larger practice space," he said. "The park."
"When?" she asked.
"The weekend after next and the Thursday after that. Zechs said both you and Luce were off," said Quatre.
"Sure," Ronnie said with a nod. "Should be fun."
"Good," Quatre said. "You'll have fun, and I know you'll help Zechs convince Luce," he added with a smile.
Ronnie looked around the room and noticed that no one was going to help her, and seeing the statement on Zechs' face she agreed to talk to Luce at lunch the next day. Zechs quietly sighed in relief.
"Monday afternoon, right?" Duo looked at Ronnie, his grin saying that he would be there even if it wasn't Monday.
Ronnie walked towards the door. "Yes, and thanks guys. Later."
Duo still held the one proof in his hands, but looked at Wufei as he heard the door close behind Ronnie. "Hey Wu, just ask her out."
"I might just do that."
- end -
1) Abaisg and garrach are Scot Gaelic for brat (and for one who is annoying).
Go to Veronica Morgan's 'Casual' Portfolio
Go to Veronica Morgan's 'Uniforms' Portfolio