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 10

After Quatre had dutifully delivered coffee to Heero and Trowa, he went to keep Duo company as they waited hopefully for Wufei to reawaken after the morning's harrowing events.

Duo and Quatre sat quietly discussing a variety of non-essentials when the others walked in. Heero looked resolved as Duo cast him a questioning glance and knew in that instant he had broken the news to Trowa.

For his part, though, Trowa looked like a prizefighter who had been defeated without ever setting foot in the ring to begin with. He approached the bed and both Duo and Quatre rose silently, making room for him to sit beside Wufei's sleeping body, allowing him some measure of closeness with the boy that he loved.

One long-fingered hand cautiously reached out to stroke the black silk hair away from the Chinese teen's face. Without words, Trowa apologized for his actions and felt the weight of guilt sweep through him all over again despite Heero's warnings.

Standing and observing the couple on the bed, Quatre noticed the warring emotions on his former roommate's face and found the courage to step closer, saying, "Talk to him, Trowa. He's doing better and maybe if he hears your voice, Wufei might wake up."

Trowa shook his head and remained silent.

"Why not?" Quatre asked, insistent in his efforts to aid his friends. "He needs you, can't you feel it?"

Duo had wrapped one arm around Heero's waist in unspoken support, but now moved away to go over to the blond. Gently placing a hand on the blonde's arm, he suggested, "Um, Q? Don't push it, okay? I think Tro just needs some time to himself right now."

"Well, okay, if you say so, Duo." Quatre was confused by this. The American teen had been desperate to get Wufei to wake up earlier and this made little sense, but he nodded before glancing at Trowa again and saying quietly, "How about I go get you some ice for that bruise, Trowa? I won't even ask what happened, it's been too weird a day as it is."

The taller teen glanced up and nodded, a slightly self-deprecating look on his face. Quatre sighed, then headed for the door, "I'll be right back."

As the Arabian boy went to get the ice, Duo flashed a look of inquiry at his lover, curious as to the origin of Trowa's injury. Heero shrugged his shoulders and the matter was settled as being something they could discuss later alone if need be and then they both looked back at the pair on the bed.

Trowa had found the courage to move closer to Wufei and had gone so far as to lay down beside him, one hand still idly stroking his hair while the other almost tentatively reached out to touch one bare shoulder where the blanket had slid down.

In a voice too soft to have been heard by the two young men that stood nearby, Trowa apologized, "i am so sorry for all this, koi. i never meant to hurt you or make you sad. please come back to me so i can tell you this, fei-kun, please?"

A slight sigh came in response and shocked all three boys as Wufei cuddled closer to Trowa.

"Tro?" Duo asked quietly, "What did you say to him?"

Frightened green eyes glanced up as Trowa suddenly recalled they weren't alone and he admitted, "I told him I'm sorry."

Heero frowned and was about to intercede when another soft sound drew everyone's attention back to the boy on the bed. Wufei was struggling to open his eyes and this brought the needed response from his lover.

"Fei? Koi?" Trowa asked urgently, rubbing the bronze shoulder more firmly, his hesitation lost as he tried to bring the other boy back to awareness.

"nnn...." Wufei moaned softly, even as the onyx orbs opened.

At first, his eyes seemed to be glazed over and confused, but as soon as Wufei saw Trowa, he reached out and put his arms around the taller teen and pulled him tightly to himself, quietly sobbing without explanation.

While glad that Wufei had awakened, Trowa immediately felt the guilt sweep through him and he tried to move away but was stopped by a hand placed firmly against his back.

Panic stricken, Trowa looked up, and saw Heero standing there regarding him sadly as he said quietly, "Don't let go of him. Wufei needs this and Quatre was right, he needs you. Hold him. Reassure him. We'll talk later, okay?"

Trowa trembled as he realized that he no longer had any control over the situation, yet this somehow relieved him of the burden of choosing how to respond and he finally relaxed back into simply holding the sobbing boy in his arms.

Heero took only a single step backwards and crossed his arms while Duo walked to the other side of the bed and sat down behind Wufei, adding his own gentle touch to the efforts to calm the boy once more.

"Take it easy, Wu," Duo soothed as he rubbed the smaller teen's bare neck gently, "Tro's here now. Everything's gonna be okay."

Getting himself under control somewhat, Wufei tried to look at Duo but wouldn't release his death-grip on Trowa to do so, but he did ask quietly, in a voice filled with confusion, "are you sure, duo? i'm so scared, something's not right, something's changed. he's back and he's destroying me again, killing me deep inside and i can't survive it a second time."

Wufei's voice faded away as something akin to hysteria tried to overtake him, but both of the boys holding him refused to allow that even as the horrible reality of his words sank in for all of them.

Duo leaned down and hushed Wufei gently, "Easy, babe. Just take it easy, Wu. You're not yourself right now, but it's gonna be okay, I promise. Trowa's holding you, I'm here, and Heero and Quatre are here for you, too, but there's nobody else. No one's gonna get to you through us, so just relax."

"He's right, koi," Trowa answered with more confidence than he'd felt all afternoon as he mentally reeled from the emotional blow of the words he'd just heard. "I won't let anyone hurt you ever again, Fei, trust me. I'll stay right here and protect you, if you'll let me."

"all right," a soft voice answered with a sigh, as Wufei calmed slowly in his arms. "don't disappear this time when I wake up, 'kay?"

"When you wake up?" Trowa asked in confusion. "You're awake right now, love, aren't you?"

There was no answer at first, then a shudder ran through Wufei's body and he gained a wild look in his eyes before answering, "Nani? You mean I *am* awake? This isn't another dream? You mean he really *isn't* here?!?"

"There's no one here but us, Wufei," Heero answered reassuringly even as he clamped down on the overwhelming desire to demand to know who the mysterious man was that the smaller pilot kept mentioning. "You're safe, just relax now and rest a little. Trowa's not going to let anything happen to you now."

"promise?" Wufei asked in a small voice as his terrified eyes caught and held Trowa's gaze.

Swallowing an unexpected lump of terror that formed as he realized the magnitude of what was being asked of him, Trowa nodded, "Promise."

"arigatou," The Chinese teen breathed out softly and allowed his eyes to drift shut once more before sighing and pulling his arms back to curl around himself self-protectively.

Trowa loosened his embrace long enough for Wufei to rearrange himself then held him once more, whispering softly, "relax, koi."

A very slight nod was his answer as Wufei drifted back into a light slumber, slightly fitful, but clearly resting as much as could be expected.

Unnoticed, Quatre had returned midway through the conversation with the confused ShenLong pilot, but he waited silently to deliver the ice to Trowa. As the mood in the room darkened again with Wufei's return to silence, he stepped forward. "Trowa? Here's that ice pack."

Sad emerald eyes gazed back at him and Trowa shook his head, "I'm not letting go of Fei to hold onto that thing. Thanks anyway, Quatre."

"You need the ice, Trowa." Heero remarked without much vehemence.

Duo, however, reached one hand past the two boys reclining on the bed, saying, "Give it to me, Q, okay? I'll hold it on him and he can take care of Wu." Noting the look of confusion on the other teens' faces, the braided pilot added, "Tro's right, he made a promise to Wu and he can't break it. Just give me the ice."

"Okay," Quatre answered uncertainly, but did as he was told and soon Duo held the cold compress against his friend's chin.

As Trowa's injured skin became numb, the four teens remained silently regarding each other, each lost in thought and wondering how they might get through this without further violence erupting in their midst.


The quiet was finally broken by Trowa who said, "I think you were right, Heero. Someone *did* hurt Fei the way you thought. What do we do about it?"

"First," Heero answered in evenly measured tones, "we need to get him emotionally stabilized before we confront him with the fact that we know the truth."

Duo nodded solemnly.

"Then," Heero continued, "we're going to let him call the shots on whether or not he wants to try what happened between you two this morning again."

Emerald eyes flew wide with alarm and Trowa was about to refuse when Heero added in a tone that clearly indicated he had no intention of listening to any arguments on the matter, "You *have* to let him decide for himself, Trowa. A lot of victims *need* that to recover fully and it's pretty damned obvious he's got a long ways to go before he's even close to that!"

Quatre's eyes widened as a sudden realization hit him of the nature of the secret that had been kept from him. In a voice that held the deepest sorrow he could feel, the Arabian teen gasped, "No! Don't tell me that Wufei was…?"

Duo cut him off, knowing that even though he was asleep, Wufei might still be able to hear on some level and the word "rape" was something they would try to avoid until he could discuss it rationally. "We think so, yes, Quatre, but don't say that out loud, okay? I'll explain downstairs, just don't say that word right now."

His heart beating rapidly, Quatre felt ill as memories of the sexual assault of one of his sisters flooded his mind and he began to tremble as he nodded and remained silent.

"Is there anything else we can do, Heero?" Trowa asked, wondering if they even had a chance any more. Quatre looked as if he might pass out, and Trowa himself wished he would suddenly wake up and find that this had all been a bad dream.

Heero, however, did have one piece of advice that Duo had longed to hear discussed openly. With a single word, the leader of the Gundam pilots brought them back into focus, "Revenge."

Duo smiled darkly and added, "All we need is a name, and some bastard somewhere will die within a very short period of time."

Quatre pulled himself together and nodded, his own resolve firming, "That or go to jail." He shook his head as his realized that anyone powerful enough to have raped a Gundam pilot most likely had the ability to get out of the legal system's idea of punishment. "Never mind. You're right, if Wufei hasn't already done the job, I'll be glad to help with *that* assassination!"

Duo frowned at the unusually blood-thirsty nature of his basically peaceful friend but decided to get details later and only answered, "We'll see, that's a ways into the future right now."

Trowa, who hadn't gotten that far in his thinking until now clenched his teeth and growled quietly, "No, this is *my* fight. If someone hurt the one I love, then it's my duty to avenge him! Once we get Fei back on his feet, I'm going after whoever did this and I'll take care of it *my* way, understand?"

The coldly calculating tones were a far cry from the gentle teen the other boys were more accustomed to lately, and it startled them. But "The Mercenary", a side of Trowa's personality that had developed under the training of the first group of mercenaries he had lived with as a child, was coming through as it often did during battle. Cold fire seemed to fill the emerald-eyed teen's face as he looked at the others but he found answering heat that would not be denied in the American's gaze.

"You'll need backup," Shinigami growled softly.

"We shall see," The Mercenary responded, unwilling to admit he might need help.

"Enough!" The Perfect Soldier interjected commandingly, as he saw the escalation of the desire for vengeance distracting Trowa so badly that he had released his hold on Wufei and the smaller teen seemed bereft without him.

Heero's voice modulated back to more normal tones as he advised, "For now, let's go back to step one. Trowa? Pay attention to getting Wufei stabilized, we need to be able to talk to him without losing him again."

"Sorry," Trowa answered contritely as the Mercenary personality submerged once more and he gathered the sleeping boy back into his arms.

"And *we* need to talk," Duo added, moving off the bed and moving to take the other two boys by the arm and tugging them from the room. "I'd assume that Quatre's got some questions left unanswered and we *did* say we'd explain, so come on, let's get that over with."

Alone once more with the boy that he loved, Trowa sighed sadly and pulled Wufei close again. He placed a tiny, chaste kiss to the sleeping boy's forehead and whispered, "we can get through this, my dragon, i'm sure of it. the guys all love you and so do i. we're not going to let you slip away from us."

Trowa remained where he was, silently keeping his promise, guarding Wufei and loving him the only way he trusted himself to do after the disastrous morning's failed attempt at seduction.

Full Author's Notes to Run at Conclusion.

End Notes for Parts 7-10:

Ah me. That was a long and painful installment, wasn't it? Can you believe that it is only early afternoon in the story so far? My angst muse, Melpomene, is really putting them through the ringer here, but it seems to me that going through the sheer hell of such a situation would take time, discussion, and someone as wonderfully supportive as Quatre is being. And here so many people thought I no longer even liked the little blond! Gee, would I set aside a handsome six-foot stud for a character I didn't like?

Now, since the migraine lightened up enough for me to get to go on-line for awhile tonight, let me see who all I owe a thank you note to? Please allow me to put forth the following worthy individuals as members of the "Hall of Fame", keeping in mind that the evil forces of AOL and my Real Life tend to loose names en route, so if you sent me a note and aren't listed here, a thousand apologies! I hereby thank my friends and supporters, including: Novea Rikuo, Lani, Eos the Goddess of Dawn!, bearilou, Nazarri, backslide57, Rubious, SkyLark, Azzie, Francine, Danielle-the-Adorable-Yume, and -- of course! -- my darling kitten for all that she does! I will *try* to get some follow-up notes out soon, but if not, please accept my appreciation just the same!

By the way, Thalia, my humor muse, got in on the act while I was writing and the next posting run will include a humor spot as the arc-tradition of anime poker cards returns! Which deck will it be and will it bring an answer to one of the collectible questions? Find out tomorrow when a smile or two drops in at the beach house with Part 11 of "Unconditional Gifts"!

Be Well and Enjoy Your Weekend!

~~~E-sama the Friday-the-13th Llama~~~

(who enjoys triskaidekaphilia, a word he made up meaning "to love the number 13 instead of fearing it" and invites you to use it, too, just to confuse the hell out of other people!)

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