6-20-2001

Title: Written in Blood
Author: AstroKender
Pairings: 5x2, 3+4, 1+2 and various combinations there of.
Catagory: action/mystery
Warnings: Gore. >.<
Spoilers: None.
Notes: Takes place after the Eve Wars of Endless Waltz. Everyone works for the Preventers.
Feedback: AstroKender@insight.rr.com
Disclaimers: GW isn't mine. I make no money from this. Don't sue me.

 

Part 22

 

"It's all my fault." The Arab moaned.

Trowa sat on the sofa and held Quatre's shuddering form tightly, exerting all his will into calming the blonde as he told the others of Duo's disappearance. The Latin boy was completely focused on every hitch and sigh of Quatre's breathing because, if he didn't, he knew he would be climbing the wall with worry and anger. Like Heero was doing now.

Heero stood across from them, his arms crossed casually as he leaned against the wall of Lady Une's office. Dark eyes watched silently as Une paced back and forth, seemingly unaffected by the news of Duo's kidnapping. But Trowa knew better. Glancing over at the Japanese boy, he watched as Heero's jaw clenched and his eyes narrowed a fraction before he turned and strode towards the door.

Une whirled on her heels to stare at him. "Heero! Where are you going?"

The Japanese boy didn't pause. "Duo's been kidnapped. I'm going to get him back."

"But what about Miss Relena?" Quatre called after him. Trowa shook his head.

"Let him go, Quatre. We can watch Relena for a while. Right, Lady Une?"

Une stared down the hall that Heero disappeared into before collapsing into a nearby chair with a sigh. The young woman rubbed her temples tiredly as she regarded the two remaining agents. "It looks like I have no choice. You both are assigned to guard Relena Darlian until further notice. You should leave immediately."

Quatre stared down ad his clasped hands. "I am so sorry for allowing this to happen. I was supposed to guard Duo, we knew that the killer had some sort of vendetta against him, and I let him disappear right under my nose." Tears ones more trailed worn paths down his pale cheeks. "If anything happens to him...."

Unable to offer comfort at this point, Trowa turned to Lady Une. "Should we notify WuFei?"

"No. If I guess correctly, he'll know soon enough. There is nothing he can do now, anyway. If Heero can't find Duo, no one will." The words dropped ominously from her lips and she sighed again, before pulling out her phone and beginning to make the necessary calls. Trowa stared at the wall, his eyes clouded with worry as Quatre curled up around himself and cried.

***

Heero Yuy stood outside the door of Chang WuFei's apartment. WuFei and Duo's apartment, he reminded himself bitterly. Shaking his head, he used the butt of his pistol to break off the doorknob, before harshly kicking the door open. Shoving his gun back into his waistband, he stepped into the Chinese boy's pristine apartment.

Blue eyes scanned the apartment's interior coldly, sweeping every inch of the front room systematically. He stepped forward only to trip over a pair of combat boots that were thrown carelessly by the door. Heero's stern statement softened slightly as he recognized whom the boots belonged to. Smiling slightly, he bent down and moved Duo's boots to sit against the wall neatly where they belonged.

Heero straightened and continued his way into the main room. His piercing gaze swept past the black leather furniture and over to the mahogany desk that sat in the corner of the room. His eyes narrowed as he regarded the picture that sat proudly on the desk's wooden surface. Frowning, Heero stalked grimly towards it, his fists clenched tightly at his sides.

***

WuFei stood in front of the mansion stoically, waiting for the colony authorities to give him permission to enter. Ebony eyes narrowed as the milling news reporters jostled him from behind once again. He was just about to turn around and give the whole bunch a piece of good, if not crude, advice on where they could stick their cameras when a hand landed on his shoulder. Tensing, the Chinese man barely refrained from throwing the figure across the estate's impressive front lawn.

"Chang WuFei?" The man asked. WuFei nodded silently and the figure sighed with relief. "Please, follow me."

"My name is Detective J.J. Maxton." The man spoke quickly as they walked into the mansions interior. "I was assigned to this case by the L1 higher ups but I'm smart enough to know when I'm over my head."

WuFei nodded, ignoring the lavish décor in favor of concentrating on the man in front of him. "Just show me the body, Detective."

Maxton sighed and lead him to a door that was literally covered in yellow police tape. Ducking under, the man motioned WuFei to follow him into the room. "It wasn't easy convincing the higher ups to keep the body where it was found, but with a little persuasion," he rubbed his thumb and forefinger together meaningfully. "They were content to look the other way."

The room the Detective led him into was obviously the master bedroom. A half-dozen men scoured the room for fingerprints and stray hairs. Maxton passed them by without a glance, leading WuFei into a large private bathroom. Lying stiffly in a crumpled heap on the floor was the victim. WuFei's eyes narrowed.

"Foreign Secretary, Larraine Kroft." Maxton mumbled. "Many in this cluster are deeply saddened by this loss. She was truly a good person. Vice Foreign Minister Relena Darlian is especially saddened, since the two had just recently struck up a friendship. Such a shame." Coughing, the man looked away. "Is there anything else you need, sir?"

WuFei looked up at him briefly. "Yes, actually. I need the phone number of a resident of this colony. A Doctor Clarece Lector."

"No problem. I'll be back shortly." Maxton quickly fled the room. WuFei walked over to closer examine the foreign secretary's body. This was a young woman in the prime of her youth, the detective was right in saying that her death was a shame. The cause of death was picked up within a matter of seconds.

"Strangled," WuFei muttered. "With her own hair." A chill trailed down his spine as he stared at the thick braid that was wrapped tightly around the victim's throat. Glancing away, his dark eyes caught a piece of paper in the woman's dead hand, held in place with an ink pin that was stabbed through the paper and into the hand.

The Chinese boy reached over and carefully pulled the paper off. The lightly drawn Pûtônghuà* was hard to discern due to the bloodstains spotting the once ivory white paper, but WuFei could just barely make it out. His throat tightened as he realized that the terse message was meant specifically for him.

/While you are out hunting for the fox, the fox is busy raiding the henhouse. It's time to pluck a few feathers from your prized rooster./

"Damn it. Duo was right; it was just a diversion. Duo.... Fuck!" WuFei jumped to his feet and ran out of the room, slamming into a bewildered Maxton.

"Where are you going, Sir? I've got the number you asked for." He waved a piece of paper in front of him like a shield. WuFei grabbed the paper and stuffed it into his pocket, before shoving past the young detective.

"I've learned what I needed to know. You can take care of the rest." The Chinese boy ripped the yellow tape from the bedroom doorway and took off running down the hall. Pulling his phone out of his jacket, he dialed as he ran.

"Yes, I need to know the earliest flight to Earth. Yes, today. Four hours? Fine."

Hanging up, WuFei slowed his breakneck speed before he crashed into the front door. Cursing, he slid down the wall, running his fingers over his tightly bound hair. He hated feeling helpless more than anything.

"Damn me...."

 

*Pûtônghuà- A Chinese written language.

***

Groaning, Duo Maxwell slowly regained consciousness. His eyes remained tightly closed as he fought off the pounding pain in his head long enough to discern his surroundings. Slowly, awareness crept through him.

Cold. He was cold. And sore. He was sitting up, in a fashion. Actually, he was on his knees, with his torso leaning over something hard and uncomfortable, and something cold against his cheek. His arms were extended out in front of him and wrapped around the foreign object, and handcuffed together by the feel of it.

Shifting his body brought sharp needles of pain up Duo's legs. Wherever he was, he had been there for quite awhile. He decided that he had discovered all he could by touch along and it was time to get a visual conformation of his surroundings. Duo took a deep breath, and opened his eyes.

While screaming was a common reflex to those under high stress situations, Duo learned long ago that it wasn't a bright idea, the useless expenditure of energy usually alerting more foes than friends. Regardless of that knowledge the American just barely kept himself from shrieking himself hoarse. As it was, all that slipped out of his throat was a strangled whimper.

The American was kneeling on a grimy tile floor inside what appeared to be a battered bathroom stall. His arms were handcuffed around a cracked porcelain toilet and his head lay heavily against the stained lid. While this would be horrible for anyone with common hygienic standards, it was not his surroundings that caused Duo to begin to hyperventilate. It was what was floating grotesquely in the commode's interior.

Inches from his face, a severed head stared blankly up at him.