6-2-2001

Title: Soul Trail
Author: raven pyralis (raven @ steelsong.com [no spaces])
Archive: Steel's page --> http://steelsong.com (thank you steel!)
The Touch of a Feather --> http://geocities.com/ChiChi894/
A U R A of the dreamer (my page) -->http://raven.steelsong.com
Category: Angst, OOC, lemon/lime, AU, yaoi/shounen ai, POV, bad plot and bad writing.
Pairing(s): 1x2/2x1 4x3(implied-ed)
Disclaimer: *roots around in her pockets* I've got a soda pop top that my friend gave to me... But you can't have that. Please don't sue me. I have no money. Seriously *cringe*
Rating: Srong R to NC-17
Spoilers: None that I know of... I could be wrong Notes: Uhhhh... This was the first fic I ever wrote, and of course it ended up being really long (or at least it will be if i get off my ass and write some more). But anyways, Duo is really crude, blunt, bratty and well... Me... In this. For some reason I seem to put alot of myself in to poor Duo. Oh well.
Feedback: Oh GOD yes. Pretty please? I'll be your best friend... reeeeeaally... *chibi eyes*
=========
Warnings: Stuff happens? Yeah.
=========
Soul Trial
Part 3
========

//What's going on?//

Quatre, Wufei and Trowa were looking at me like they were expecting me to do something. Heero sat in front of me, smiling. *Really* smiling. It was the same smile I had made when he had come to kill me, when OZ had gotten a hold of me. Relief, peace, rest. I hated that smile. It made me feel like he knew something I didn't. Then everything was gone. It was just me and Heero. Someone was crying in the background, but I could only see Heero.

Only Heero.

He stood up, looked at me, and reached out a hand. I took it, and everything seemed fuzzy. When we touched, I felt a shock, and then everything was white. White clouding my eyes, crawling around my brain. Seeping into every part of my body.

Some one was breathing, their breath loud, labored. It was my own. Then the cold white was gone, and something warm was wrapped around me. Arms, Heero's arms. Wrapped around my waist, Heero' body pressed against my own.

~Duo...~

Heero was saying my name, calling to me! His arms left my waist, and his figure retreated into the darkness that surrounded us.

//Don't go! You can't be *this* cruel!//

"Duo!"

"Stay with me!" I yelled out in my sleep.

Strong arms were shaking my shoulders, my eyes snapped open.

"You were having a bad dream, it's over now." Heero said, his voice clear and untired.

I pulled Heero down on the bed next to me and nuzzled at his shoulder. He didn't struggle, or call me 'baka' or hit me. He just lay there next to me, blue sparks of light gazing into my own eyes.

"Duo, what were you dreaming about?" He looked right at me, not moving in my almost white knuckle grip around his waist.

"Nothing important. It was just a bad dream," It wasn't a lie, I was just twisting the truth. When you never lie, you have to find loop holes.

"What was the dream *really* about , Duo?" Damnit. Stupid Heero. Why must I be so easy to read? He knew that I wasn't telling him the whole truth. He always did.

"Just drop it! I don't wanna talk about it all right?" I know I sounded like a little kid, but I really *didn't* want to talk about it.

He looked at me and smirked, then climbed back under the covers.

"Wake me if you have more dreams," He slid his arms back around my waist and pulled me right up against him. Eventually I could hear his even breathing.

I needed to go the the bathroom, I felt like I was going to faint or throw up. I wriggled out of Heero's arms and got up as quietly as I could. I didn't want to wake Heero up. He would be grouchy if he found out that he had woken up just because I was making a mad dash for the bathroom.

The ceramic tiles were cold under my feet. It was a welcome feeling, a *real* feeling. I went over to the mirror and looked at myself, daring the 'mirror Duo' to make a move... and he did! The surface of the mirror swirled and then solidified. The thing staring back at me was no longer myself. There was a little girl on the other side of the glass, her face was smeared with rust colored blood. Her hair was matted and bloody.

And I did the first thing that came to mind. I punched the mirror, not caring that that it made my knuckles bleed. Bloody streaks ran down the cracked mirror.

Heero had heard the crack, and came running into the bathroom. I crumpled to the floor holding my fist. Blood was welling up between my clenched fingers, dripping onto the floor. Heero must have walked up to me, because he was hauling me up in his arms. I was still clutching my fist as Heero held me against him. He was so warm.

"Duo, what happened?!" He sounded worried, but I didn't think that was possible.

I pointed my non-bleeding, yet shaky hand at the broken glass. "There was a person in the mirror!" I sounded hysterical, "It was a girl, a little girl and she was all bloody. And she looked right at me!" I dropped my hand and shook all over in Heero's arms, my head dropped to his shoulder, and we just stood there.

I let myself go limp and and he carried me back to my - well more like *our* - bed. He bandaged up my hand (he changed the omnipresent bandage around my wrist as well. Funny how the new cut and the old knife wound were both on my right hand) and crawled under the covers once again.

I cracked an eye open and looked at him. "Anno...Heero, why are you being so nice?"

He brushed his hand over my eyes, closing them for me. "Because." He secured his arms around my waist for the third time that night.

"Now go to sleep."

"Arigato Heero."

"Go to sleep." He sounded like I was annoying him. Which was most likely true.

***

"*Duo*! Did you cut yourself again?!" Quatre sounded pissed, Wufei looked like he was going to kill me. Classes had ended around two, and i had been avoiding everyone but Heero all day. If they did happen to see me, they only saw the *left* side of me. It was now around four in the afternoon. I had done a pretty damn good job of concealing my hand.

I knew they were gonna ask that.

"No! First of all it's my knuckles, not my wrist, and second it's only my one hand. And I always have my arm wrapped up, this time there's just a little bit more bandage. That and the fact that I'm bleeding..." I sighed.

"Gomen, Duo. But what did you do?" Quatre looked worried, he probably thought it was his fault. He seems to think everything is his responsibility.

"I punched a mirror. I guess I looked at myself the wrong way." I grinned and laughed. They needed to think that I was fine, not that I was seeing dead people in the mirrors.

"What really happened?" Wu-bear saw right through me and my loop holes.

"You have to promise that you wont cart me off. All right?" Fuck. They were gonna think that I had finally snapped.

"Of course not!" Quatre was trying not to laugh. Wufei didn't seem to think it was funny at all.

I took a deep breath and told them about the mirror and the little girl. I left out the part about Heero. They already had enough ammunition to make fun of me for the rest of my life. They didn't need to know that Heero and I were... at least not yet. It was for Heero to decide when to make it public.

"I see." Wufei looked at me funny.

"You don't believe me!?" I made my 'ouch-that-hurt' face. Wufei looked at me even funnier.

"No no, Duo, we believe you," Quatre glanced at Wufei, just a flicker of his eyes, then back to me. "Duo, after what happened on Friday, I believe you. Really!" I grinned.

"You guys better believe me! I don't lie, 'member?" I stuffed my hands in my pockets and tried to glare at both of them.

Q grinned sheepishly, shuffling his feet on the blacktop. But Wu just snorted and looked over my head.

Quatre and I followed his stony gaze to see a girl standing behind us. She looked like she was about our age, maybe a little older. She was wearing the girl's school uniform, but the left sleeve had a rip in it, a white bandage showed through the hole. The bandage had red splotches on it.

Her red hair shown in the sunlight and her bright green eyes flashed with amusement, as if she found us funny.

Wufei crossed his arms and stood there. Scowling.

Quatre offered his hand and she took it. He liked meeting new people.

"I'm Akiko." She looked directly at me.

"That's Quatre," I pointed, "And that's Wu-chan," I smirked at his scowled. He was gonna hit me later. "And I'm -," She cut me off in mid introduction.

"I know who *you* are, Shinigami." We gawked.

"A-and you know this, *how*?!" I spluttered, utterly confused.

She looked at me with a confused statement, "You don't know?" I quirked an eyebrow, and she continued. "You are Shinigami, I'm not sure how to explain it really. You're human, but there is something special about you. You were born special. The only thing I can do is point you down the right road. It's your choice. But you have to know, if you choose to become one of my enemies, then I *will* have to kill you." She looked into my eyes, and she must have seen the confusion. She sighed and continued.

"Duo, just keep being who you are. You might never have to use the power hidden inside you, but there will be things that are curious about you. Things that you never thought were real, the things that go 'bump' in the night will come after you. And you will have to rely on your power and the power of your friends. And if you truly need the help, then I will come. But you wont need me." She reached into her pocket and took out a piece of paper. "You should be fine." She handed the folded paper to me. When I reached out to take it from her she took my hand and smiled. She really was beautiful.

Did I say gay? Bi... that works better.

She leaned closer to me and whispered, "Just one more thing," She leaned closer and kissed me! It was the weirdest feeling. Sure, I had kissed girls before, but this felt really *really* odd. My lips started tingling, and so did my fingers. The pins and needles ran up my arms and down my body to my feet. It felt like I had been plunged into a tub of ice water.

Quatre and Wufei were staring at me, and Akiko. My eyes were wide open in shock, and i couldn't have closed them if i wanted to. Wufei looked like he disapproved, Quatre was giggling and blushing at the same time. Wufei must have thought that we were being very indecent.

Then they were gone.

Akiko was standing in front of me. Everything around us was black.

"Duo, do you know where we are?" Her voice sounded like it was everywhere.

"This is...?" I looked around the darkness, my voice sounded small. I knew that place. It felt like the place my mind had gone to when Heero had 'died'. Familiar. Creepy.

"Try and get out, Duo,"

Cold, everything was so cold.

I felt someone next to me, I turned and saw Heero. He scowled at me, turned and walked away. But before I could reach out to him, someone was on the other side of me. Quatre.

"Quatre! What's going on?" He looked at me with cold eyes. He looked angry with me. Just like Heero he turned and walked away.

"Duo,"

I looked behind me and Wufei was glaring at me. It wouldn't have been odd, but there was hate in his glare.

"Wufei! What did I do? Why are you all leaving me?" He looked at me like it was obvious.

"We don't like you Duo, we never did. We never will. Why don't you just kill yourself so that we won't have to deal with you anymore," I stared at him in shock. My eyes stung and I felt cold. My friends were saying this to me.

Trowa showed up last, his eyes, well his *visible eye* seemed colder than usual, a look of disgust crossed his face and then he was gone. I had never seen him show so much on his face.

"What did I do? Quatre, Wufei, Trowa! *Heero*! What did I do to you?!" I knew that I sounded hysterical, but when your friends, the only people left for you to care about, tell you just to go kill yourself to make it easier on them, how else *could* I sound?

"What will you do Duo?" Akiko's voice sounded cold in the dark.

"What an I supposed to do? Why are they all leaving me?" My eyes stung, and my chest hurt. I felt like I was choking, my friends were leaving me! *Heero* was leaving me.

"What will you do Duo?" I suddenly decided that I didn't like that voice. I had a feeling that *she* was doing this to me. This girl, Akiko, was somehow making my friends hate me. No wait ... that wasn't it. These weren't my friends. It was all that girl!

"Those aren't my friends! They can't be!" I sounded hysterical. Screaming made me feel better.

"What the hell are you doing to me! Give me back my friends!!!" I screamed again, and lashed out. With what, I have no idea, but lashed out nonetheless. In the distance a girl screamed.

Then suddenly I was back. Akiko was sprawled on the ground at my feet. She was still breathing. Quatre and Wufei were looking at me, concern showing in their eyes.

I reached down and prodded the girls prone figure, and she stirred. One liquid green eye fluttering open at my touch.

I produced my hand, thinking she would take it. She didn't. She did one of those cool jump-up things, where you arch your back and kick yourself up onto your feet. I've seen Wufei do it before.

She smiled at me.

"Well done Duo. I had no idea that you had so much faith in your friends. That's good, keep it that way," With that she turned and walked away. No sway in her step, not a waver. You would never have been able to tell that she had been on the ground out cold just a moment before.

Fuck.

Quatre and Wufei must be confused as hell.

I blinked a couple of times, and grinned nervously. How was I gonna explain it to them?

***

"So you were taken into some weird place, and we told you to kill yourself?" Wufei still looked confused. That was like the tenth time I had explained it.

"That's what I said," And It was. This was getting on my nerves.

"You *know* we would *never* say that to you, Duo. We're your best friends!" Quatre thought it was his fault again.

"I know Quatre. I think that's what she was trying to find out. I guess it was a test or something. I'm totally lost in this whole thing." I don't know if I've ever felt more helpless in my life before. Well, OK so I was exaggerating. But I still didn't like it.

"Should we tell the others?" Wufei: Voice of reason. At least when he's not pissed off, or if I'm not bothering him to much.

"Yeah I guess. There's no point in trying to hide it from Heero, he'll know as soon as I step through the door, that something is wrong. And Quatre has a tendency to tell Trowa *everything*." I rolled my eyes in mock exasperation.

Poor Quatre. Every time he blushed, even a faint blush, you could see it so easily. How Arabians end up with blond hair and nearly white skin, i don't know, but it's gotta be hard. 'Specially when one of your friends loves to tease.

"Any body want to get some dinner?" Duo to the rescue, "You have money, right?" Quatre dug around in his pocket and came up with a wallet that looked about ready to burst.

Quatre nodded, and I grabbed them both by the wrist and dragged them off to town. And I'm serious about that, I literally had to drag both of them.