Last major revision: 06/09/99
DOUBLE VISION: A Gundam Wing fic by Madamhydra
(formerly titled "P.O.V.")
Short Disclaimer: (Full Disclaimers at the end)
Gundam Wing is copyrighted by its creators and all distributors of their work and used without permission.
Quatre paced frantically, his gaze skittering between the hanger where Gundam Wing Zero stood alone, its familiar dark companion conspicuously absent, and the closed door to Duo's and Heero's bedroom.
Wufei also kept a wary eye on that same doorway. Even Trowa looked visibly... disturbed.
Finally, his face wrinkled in grief and distress, Quatre whispered, "He doesn't cry. He doesn't yell. All he does is type away on that laptop with that... that smile on his face."
Wufei barely managed to suppress a shiver at the reminder. He supposed that he should find out what the hell happened on that last mission and to Shinigami so they could reassess their options, but he reluctantly admitted he lacked the courage to face that eerie, empty smile.
Quatre couldn't stand it anymore. Before either of his companions could stop him, he ran over to the closed door and quietly eased it open.
The scene inside seemed unchanged. The light from the laptop's monitor provided just enough illumination to show the unearthly little smile on the short-haired pilot's face as he continued to type with relentless efficiency.
Quatre took a few quick gulps of air, then carefully eased himself into the room. Trowa and Wufei silently followed.
The usual conversational openers -- 'Are you all right?' or 'How are you feeling?' -- were totally pointless. The boy sitting like a statue in front of the computer was obviously *not* all right and most likely never would be again. And as for how the other pilot was feeling.... Quatre had never seen that uncanny expression before and hoped to never seen that sort of smile again.
"Heero... what... what happened to him...?" The blond pilot's voice trailed off uncertainly.
Never taking his eyes off the computer screen where text scrolled by at a dizzying pace, the other pilot stopped typing and replied in a flat monotone.
"I told you. He's dead."
Sensing that Quatre was floundering, Trowa quietly said, "Are you sure?"
"Yes." One of the hands lying next to the keyboard twitched slightly. He finally turned toward Quatre and the others. No one could mistake the pain and loss in that bright, searing gaze that seemed to rip right through them....
....but the chilling half-smile on his face never changed as he continued speaking in that same empty monotone.
"I killed him myself."
Wufei hissed sharply as a stunned Quatre clutched Trowa's arm for support. When Wing Zero arrived alone at the rendezvous point a few hours before, they had guessed... no, they had *known* something terrible had happened to Heero and Duo, but the Chinese pilot had never imagined anything like this.
Then again, he probably should have.
The other Gundam pilot would never forgot the moment the lone, blood-splattered figure of Duo Maxwell emerged from cockpit of Wing Zero, his brown hair now hacked brutally short.
Then two simple, familiar words....
[ MISSION TIME -02:00 ]
"So what's the big rush about this mission, huh?" Duo asked in a chirpy voice.
Heero didn't even bother to glare at his lover who was absently chewing on the end of his braid. In his usual monotone, he said, "Secret research lab. It recently received several shipments of power generating and other heavy-duty electrical equipment. Whatever they're working on involves manipulating a great deal of energy."
"Maybe they're developing a new type of beam weapon?" Quatre ventured, quickly flicking through a few printouts. "Especially since it appears that nearly a third of OZ's best physics people have been transferred to the facility within the last year."
"Possibly. We do know that they're preparing to run a full-scale test within the next week. What little information we have on this site was leaked by someone high up in OZ."
Wufei scowled. "That stinks of a trap."
"Yes. However, there's also strong evidence from neutral sources to suggest that this particular project is so controversial that factions within OZ itself would prefer that it never be completed," Heero said.
Duo whistled softly. "If whatever these scientists are doing is giving a couple of OZ bigshots the heebie-jeebies, it's got to be really nasty."
"That's why we have orders to take out the facility now."
"But what of the project data?" Trowa quietly asked.
"Someone else is handling that. Stopping the operational test is the primary objective."
[ MISSION TIME +00:20 ]
"Yo! Wasn't the weather supposed to be only partly cloudy?" Duo muttered irritably over the radio.
Heero merely grunted, then took a quick glance at his monitors. Shinigami's black form was barely distinguishable from the surrounding rainswept darkness.
"Then where the hell did this raging thunderstorm come from? Visibility's shit and...." The radio transmission broke up for an instant as a flurry of lightning bolts danced across the sky. "....can't reach Wufei or Trowa...."
"They know what they're supposed to do. Keep your mind on the mission."
As the other pilot snorted loudly in response, Heero switched off the radio, cutting off Duo's complaints. But the cobalt-eyed pilot privately acknowledged that he also found the unusual weather more than a little troubling.
"I killed him myself."
As Wufei, Trowa, and Quatre stared at Duo with a mixture of shock and dismay, behind them, the bedroom door suddenly opened.
"What are all of you doing in here?" said a *very* familiar voice.
Wufei nearly gave himself whiplash as he snapped his head around to stare behind him.
The other Gundam pilots gaped in disbelief as Heero Yuy stood in the open doorway, impatiently waiting for an answer from the three boys clustered around his desk.
"But... but aren't you supposed to be DEAD!?" sputtered Quatre.
"No, I'm not," Heero replied in his usual cold monotone.
Trowa frowned, then firmly grabbed Quatre and pulled the smaller boy away from Duo, who sat frozen at the desk in a rigidly attentive pose. Wufei also backed away, his gaze switching rapidly between the supposedly deceased Heero and the strangely behaving Duo.
Now that the other pilots had moved, Heero could now see that there was a person sitting in the shadows by his desk. But more importantly, that unknown person was apparently messing with *his* laptop. He stalked forward and snapped, "Who the hell do...."
"You can't be here...," whispered Duo as he slowly rose to his feet and stepped out into the light streaming from the open doorway.
Heero stared at the now short-haired pilot, his cobalt eyes going wide with surprise.
"Heero's DEAD. I should know." Duo said flatly, never taking his eyes off the other pilot as he advanced another step. "And if he's dead, you're nothing but a fucking impostor." He glared at the other boy, icy fury burning in his blue-violet eyes.
"Omae o korosu." And with a single smooth motion, Duo lifted a gun and pointed it at Heero's head.
Although his conscious mind might have been paralyzed by disbelief, Heero's well-trained reflexes instantly kicked in. He dove for cover while simultaneously reaching for his own gun.
The sudden flurry of motion finally snapped the other pilots out of their momentary trances. Trowa and Quatre converged on Heero while Wufei pounced on Duo.
The Chinese pilot got a nasty surprise as Duo neatly evaded his first attack and nearly caved in his face with a lightning fast elbow strike. From the occasional sparring matches with the other pilots, Wufei was familiar with his comrades' individual fighting skills. While Duo was quite competent at hand-to-hand combat, there was no way that the violet-eyed pilot was *this* good.
As he ducked another ferocious blow, Wufei frantically thought, (If I didn't know better, I'd swear I was fighting HEERO!)
In the meantime, Heero finally regained his voice and snarled, "What the HELL is going on!!!"
Confronting the Wing Zero pilot with steely resolve, Trowa said evenly, "Hand over the gun. At least until we figure out who's telling the truth."
Before the other pilot could respond, they all heard the thud of running footsteps in the hallway. Everyone froze as a wide-eyed Duo -- complete with that familiar meter-long braid swishing wildly about -- burst into the room.
"HEERO!!! You won't fucking well believe this! There's ANOTHER damned Wing Zero in the rear hanger...!"
Duo's shout abruptly trailed off as his fellow pilots stared at him as if he was some sort of bug-eyed monster. He frantically glanced around the dimly lit bedroom for any clues to his friends' strange behavior and found that even Heero was looking pretty damn freaked out.
(And if he's acting like THAT....)
Then Duo choked out a soft, "Eep!" as he found himself staring into a shockingly familiar face... after all, he saw that very same face staring back at him from the mirror every morning.
The Full Disclaimer
All rights and privileges to Shin Kidousenki Gundam Wing are trademarks and property of Sunrise, Bandai, Sotsu Agency, and associated parties. The characters of these works are used WITHOUT permission for the purpose of entertainment only. This work of fiction is not meant for sale or profit.
Original portion of the fiction included here is considered to be the sole property and copyrighted to the author.