Disclaimer: Gundam Wing is the property of Sotsu Agency/Sunrise. No profits were made in writing this.

Pairing: 3+4+3
Rating: R
Warnings: Shounen Ai/genfic.

Part 8
by kebzero

July eighth, AC 207

Side Notes

It's been good to just forget everything for a while - to just live, and not worry. It took me a couple of days to get there, but it left me as happy as a Buddhist monk achieving nirvana.

I should have known it wouldn't last. The state of perfection is best known by its inherent fragility; it takes forever to attain, and an instant to shatter.

This morning, heading down to the breakfast buffet, I ran into Quatre. He'd woken up early, and had already eaten, placed three calls to check on his substitutes, and decided to work on his tan. He asked me to help with the lotion.

I wanted to say yes. I wanted to say no. I wanted not to say anything, but that would have seemed the strangest of all, if I'd left it at that. Without thinking much beyond that, I just reached out and took the bottle.

Quatre sat down on one of the sun chairs, put aside the towel he'd carried over his neck, and bent forward a little, waiting. I've never better understood a vampire than I did just then.

So, I sat down, poured a good amount between his shoulder-blades, and tentatively smeared the stuff out, all over his back. I wanted to rush it. I wanted to take it slow. I wanted to do it as normally as I could, as much like a nonchalant friend would.

When he let go this faint, content sigh, that became ridiculously hard.

I've always had an affinity for Quatre. I've never been one to trust people at first sight, but Quatre was different. For so long, I thought he was the one who surrendered back then.

At first, I thought it was just a big-brother reflex of some sort, something akin to how Cathy keeps looking out for me, how she protects me in any way she sees fit and takes payment in the sibling sort of abuse. Quatre certainly could give off the impression of a kid in way the wrong place at the wrong time. It takes someone for him to lead to truly realize how much he belongs at a battlefield.

Then, the dreams began.

I dismissed them at first. Dreams are just how your brain scrambles everything you've experienced recently, plus a fair bit you never have, and makes up a ludicrous story while it archives those memories it wants to keep. I had plenty of dreams where I died, or where I flew, or where I became Heavyarms and went on a rampage, stomping out OZ soldiers like ants. So what if I had a few where I got intimate with a guy friend?

Then it got worse.

I suppose getting amnesia was sort of a good thing. Being someone else for a while sort of helped put some distance between the whos I were. By the time it all came back, we were on the Peacemillion, and close to the endgame of the first war. I got around to accepting I was probably gay - ever since Midii, I've had trouble trusting women with most things, much less my feelings. I didn't tell anyone, though - not even Quatre. Instead, I kept those thoughts to myself, and myself out of the way insofar possible. After the battles, it was easy enough to hightail it back to the circus and continue to hide there.

Mariemeia brought it all back, but again I could seek shelter at the circus afterward.

The fact remained, though - I wanted Quatre.

It was about that thought that I woke up from my daydreaming, and found that with Quatre's back all done, my hands had wandered around to his chest, and I'd leaned forward, enough for my hair to brush his, my nose almost touching his ear, giving me a breathful of the sweet strawberry shampoo scent of his wet hair. I froze.

"Trowa?" Quatre asked me cautiously - and I got up and ran.

He called after me, but thankfully he didn't follow me.

It's difficult visiting someone and try to stay away from them at the same time. I think I love Quatre, but I'd never want to say or do anything to hurt him. It's a catch-22, if there ever was one.

I think Quatre thinks I'm keeping away from him because I have something against him. The truth is the exact opposite.

And I just want to protect him.

From me.

Another note when I've washed my hands again.

- T.B.

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