Disclaimers: I don't own any of the Gundam Wing Universe. I'm not making any money off this story. It's written out of love, so please don't sue me.

Written: May-July, 2001
Overall Rating: NC-17
Overall Pairings: (3+5) (1x2/2x1) (?x5)NCS
Category: DARK Angst Yaoi/Shonen ai Friendship Rape-Memories Sap Lime AU-OOC
Enigma Story Categories: G-Boys High Adventure! & Gundam Nightmares
Warnings: DARK, angst, yaoi/shonen ai, friendship, remembrance of non-consensual sex, sap, lime, language, violence, fear, AU-OOC

Notes: The hidden gifts that Wufei discovered brought him a sense of joy at the time, but now shadows of a dark and painful past return and his world begins to shatter. Can Trowa find the strength to truly love him unconditionally and somehow keep the Chinese teen from being irrevocably destroyed?


Unconditional Gifts
Part 8

While Heero, Quatre, and Trowa made their plans for facing the unknown, a minor miracle occurred in the second story bedroom where Duo kept watch over Wufei.

It wasn't dramatic, and it certainly wasn't everything the braided teen might have hoped for at that point, but as Duo scanned the internet for information on OZ's latest efforts to locate the Gundam pilots he heard a small noise beside him.

"nnn..." Wufei's voice softly echoed in the room, immediately drawing Duo's attention since he feared he might have imagined the sound in the first place.

Duo set the laptop aside quickly and focused his attention on the boy on the bed. "Wu? Babe, are you okay?" He leaned over and brushed the loose black silk hair back and peered more closely at the still closed eyes and shook his head sadly. "You're still not awake, are you, Wu?"

The American pilot sighed sadly as he tucked the blankets up more warmly around Wufei's neck and slumped back down next to him. He shook his head unhappily, "Wu-chan, what the hell am I supposed to do about all this? I'm so damned desperate, I think I'm starting to hear things! Any chance you're gonna come out of this soon, babe? I mean, if you don't then…"

Before Duo's soliloquy could continue, though, the Chinese teen actually rolled over onto his side and curled towards him as if instinctually seeking comfort. This brought a broad smile to Duo's face as he moved to embrace the smaller teen. The braided boy gratefully lay there rubbing his friend's back and softly speaking reassuring words that might help draw Wufei back into the world of the living.

Quatre walked up to the doorway and looked in before entering. He was amazed to see that something had finally changed and he walked in smiling as he offered quietly, "Duo? What happened? Is Wufei doing better?"

Violet eyes glanced over at the doorway and Duo smiled, "Yeah, I think so, Quatre. He moved and it seems like he's asleep for real now instead of that weird zombie mode he was in before."

"Is he in REM sleep, Duo?" the Arabian teen asked, walking closer and looking at the boy they were all worried about who hadn't spoken or even opened his eyes since the disastrous morning.

"I'm not sure," Duo remarked and looked more closely then moved out of the way so that the Sandrock pilot could check. "Why is that important, Quatre?"

As he knelt by the side of the bed, Quatre looked closely and was pleased to detect the Rapid Eye Movement indicative of normal sleep. Rising back up with a relieved smile, he told his friend, "If he's moving in his sleep *and* experiencing REM, then we've got a better shot at Wufei coming out of this today instead of tomorrow, Duo. Without achieving normal sleep, he might've needed medical intervention and while I can call my sister I'm sure we'd all prefer to handle this one ourselves, or am I wrong?"

"You're not wrong, Q-Ball," Duo remarked with a gentle smile of his own while he allowed the nickname to carry his gratitude for the other's sensitivity, something he'd cruelly accused him of having none of earlier that day.

Usually impervious to guilt over such minor matters, the American teen had realized that he had been terribly judgmental earlier in the day and he regretted it.

Granted, being awoken by the sound of one of his friends screaming in fear followed by the crashing of a door was a startling way to start the day, but to have assumed the worse about Trowa without evidence was too much. The unpleasantness that had been directed at the blond boy was far more than he could write off to simple exhaustion but the stress they were facing now was worse than what even terrorists usually faced. Duo decided to make an effort to try harder to be more reasonable as the day wore on.

For his part, Quatre suddenly realized he was running a bit behind schedule for delivering the coffee he'd promised and spoke up quickly, "I almost forgot, I came to tell you that Trowa woke up. Heero asked me to get them some coffee since there was something they needed to discuss in private. I'm going to go brew some now, would you like a cup? Or, if you want," he looked puzzled then added, "I can take over here if Heero needs you there when he talks to Trowa?"

First Duo had smiled at the news that Trowa had awakened, but then he frowned as he considered his options. Coming to a decision, he shook his head. "No, I'd better stay put, Quatre. I think Heero may handle this better solo and he would've asked for me if he wanted me there."

The American looked uncertain at first and then his face set more firmly as he added firmly, "No, I definitely think I'll stay out of that discussion for now. If they can't work it out, then maybe I'll get involved. However," his face brightened considerably, "I would just *love* some java! What kind are ya making?"

Quatre smiled gently as he realized that sometimes being the support team was as important as being the ones to face the firefight as Heero and Trowa seemed about to do and offered, "Um, how's some of your Starbuck's French Roast sound, Duo?"

"Sounds yummy good, Q-Ball!" Duo smiled back with a wink, "Add a cookie to it and I'm there! Uh, well, I'm here, actually, but you know what I mean!"

Quatre giggled slightly at the attempt at humor and nodded, any break in the tension was welcomed. "You got it. Be back in a bit."

"Kaybees," Duo agreed cheerfully and then went back to quietly guarding the boy sleeping next to him and hoping that their teammate had been right and that Wufei might awaken soon.

Full Author's Notes to Run at Conclusion.

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