No Time For Secrets
As Wufei walked back to the office to try to convince Heero to come, he failed to notice Joe walking by carrying a small item in his
hands. After stashing the object in a pocket, Joe walked in to check on Laurel's condition and give her something that would, hopefully,
keep that happy look on her face when she left to go back to the orphanage.
Wufei strode into the office and approached Heero. "Can you walk yet, Yuy?" he asked falling back into his old pattern of using last
names when he felt stressed or worried. Heero's face had looked as it had before most missions, flat and deadly serious, but Wufei's
question shook him out of his thoughts.
"I think so, *Chang*," Heero weakly tried to smirk back. "Why? Need something?"
"Yes, and it's urgent. Come with me." Wufei turned and directed Heero out the door in a manner that allowed no refusal. Noting
Heero's balance had returned fully, Wufei smiled inwardly; if Laurel was right, Heero needed a clear head for what was to come. Duo's
life depended on it.
His thoughts were broken by a loud squeal of delight, "Shinigami!"
Hearing the familiar nickname of his lover, Heero launched himself into a run, skidding to a halt at Laurel's open door. What he saw,
however, made him confused. A little girl, one arm in a cast, was happily hugging what appeared to be a small, black, plush kitten to her
Laughing, Joe got up to leave saying, "Where did you come up with *that* name? I haven't ever heard that before, but I'm glad you like
it, Laurel! It was Mitsu-san's idea to get you a kitty, I'll tell her you liked it." Smiling, he left the room almost colliding with the other two.
"What are you doing here?" he asked them perplexed.
"I honestly don't know, Joe," Heero looked disheartened for some reason unknown to the physician. Shrugging, he added, "Wufei said I
had to come see someone right away, so I came. Oi! What happened to your arm, doc?"
A strange look crossed Joe's face, but he lied again saying, "Minor injury, a hazard in my profession. I'm glad to see you have regained
your equilibrium. But don't forget, the surgeon should be here in about 10 minutes." He *hated* lying to anyone, especially patients! But
there was no easy way to tell this unusual teenager that he had unwittingly broken his bones accidentally earlier.
"No problem, Joe. I'm starting to think Wufei just wanted me to stretch my legs." He cast an annoyed glance at Wufei who refused to
even flinch under the implied insult.
"By the way, you guys have any idea what 'Shinigami' means?" Joe asked innocently.
Heero's eyes darkened before he said, "Yes. It's Japanese, it means 'The God of Death'. Strangely, that's also what Duo used to call
himself during the war." Heero's eyes clouded up with concern for his absent lover who had been forever by his side.
"Hmm." Joe stopped to think this over and decided to ask his fiancée more about it later. "Weird name for a little girl to give a stuffed
toy. Oh well, see you later."
"Come, we're running out of time," Wufei ushered Heero into Laurel's room.
"Hi, Mr. He-eero," stumbling over the name, Laurel did the best she could, but it was close enough to get his attention. "Thank you, Mr.
Wufei, I think everything will be okay now!"
"Good," Wufei answered seriously, leaving the room and one very confused Heero Yuy behind him.
Looking at the child, Heero was suddenly reminded of another little girl who had held a puppy in her arms.
"I guess Wufei told you my name, huh?" Heero asked the young girl in front of him. He had crossed his arms defensively across his chest
at the thought of being brought on a wild goose chase. "Why did you name your toy 'Shinigami'?"
"Because, Mr. Heero, it's *supposed* to be named that. Can you sit down with me? There's something really super important I have to
tell you." Laurel looked at him very seriously, a strange mixture of hope and fear displayed in her face.
Heero Yuy, who had faced off against legions of enemy Mobile Suits without fear, suddenly felt a chill run down his spine. Obediently he
sat where the girl told him to and prepared to listen to something which his inner senses told him was crucial.
"My name is Laurel, Mr. Heero, and I have a message for you. Actually, a couple of them. First, don't be afraid, it's going to be scary,
but everything will be okay and Mr. Duo is going to get all better."
"Duo?!?" Heero practically jumped. After just hearing Shinigami mentioned and now Duo, he was feeling the hairs on the back of his
"Yes, Mr. Heero, your, well not yet, but soon husband; the one with the really pretty purple eyes. Mr. Duo is going to be okay, but it's
going to be hard to make sure it turns out that way. In a little bit, something bad is going to happen and you need to listen closely to what
you need to do. When you run past my room, I'm going to come out and yell 'Shinigami' as loud as I can. When you hear it, you *have*
to fall flat on the floor as fast as you can, okay? If you don't lay down, Mr. Duo wont get better. As soon as you can after you fall down,
you have to jump up and run as fast as you can outside, do you understand?" Pure concentration infused her blue eyes.
"No, frankly, I don't. But somehow I think I need to do what you're telling me. Is that why Wufei brought me here?" Heero was not
comfortable with what this young child was telling him. Running? Falling down when she yelled, then running again? It didn't make sense,
but maybe it didn't have to, maybe he just had to do it.
"Yes, Mr. Wufei got his own message already, but I can't tell you what it was and I can't tell anyone about yours either. Just trust that
everything will be okay, but you have to go on a long hard trip to make it that way. When you go, and this is another important thing, so
don't forget, remember to call Quatre-daddy so they know what to do here when you get back, okay? Oh, and you're bringing
somebody with you on your way back, you'll need his help."
"'Quatre-daddy'? Do you mean the young man with the blond hair? He doesn't have any children, what are you talking about?" Now
Heero's usual suspicious nature was reasserting itself. He began to doubt everything he had so gullibly accepted before. The Perfect
Soldier had reawakened within him.
"Yes! I know he isn't now, but he's going to be my Quatre-daddy later, and you *have* to remember to call him! It's really, really,
*really* important!" She proclaimed with her strongest convictions clear in her eyes. "If you forget, Mr. Duo may not get better! Do you
promise to remember your messages? You've got to do them, okay?" When he didn't answer immediately, for the first time since she
arrived including during the treatments on her broken arm, Laurel started to cry. Her eyes locked with his and through the tears, she
begged, "Do you *promise*?!"
Completely fed up with whatever was going on, yet still feeling a nagging sense that he needed to listen to what she said, Heero finally
capitulated, "All right, I promise. Now, is there anything else or can I go? They're supposed to come tell me how Duo is doing and I
have to get back."
Still crying, Laurel looked at him with the most serious look she could possibly achieve and finally added, "There's one more thing.
Something else bad is going to happen, I can't tell you what, but you shouldn't feel sorry about it, you will but you shouldn't. There is no
other way for you to save Mr. Duo, so don't worry about it. If you do everything I told you, I *promise* everything will be okay and
Mr. Duo will get better. Remember to keep thinking about him getting better and some of this bad stuff wont seem so important, 'cause
it's not, okay?" Laurel smiled at him, wiping her eyes dry so he wouldn't think she was a cry-baby.
"Heero!" Quatre called down the hall. "Get back here, the surgeon's here!"
"Well, kid, I have to leave. I'm still not sure why you told me all this stuff or how you talked Wufei into helping you get me here, but
don't worry. If there's only one thing I'll be sure to do is to think about Duo getting better. That's all that matters to me." Heero had
already stood up and was headed for the door.
"Don't forget you *promised* to call Quatre-daddy on your way back from your trip! It's super important, okay?" Laurel pleaded with
him one last time as Heero stepped out the door.
"Yeah, sure, kid, whatever," he called negligently back over his shoulder as he walked away. His mind was completely occupied with
thoughts of what the surgeon would tell them and was already forgetting his "messages" as she had called them.
"Oh, darn!" Laurel grumbled as she reached for her plush kitten; toy in hand, she lay down on her bed for a short rest. "I forgot to
remind him to fall down when I yell your name, do you think he'll remember, Shinigami? I sure hope so or none of this is going to work
and Mr. Duo will never get better." Sadness crossed her face again and one lone tear escaped an ice-blue eye.
Meanwhile, in Tokyo, a young man named Akira wrecked his motorcycle coming down a hill too fast and narrowly avoiding going
straight into a row of parked cars outside the Nambu Memorial Hospital. The squeal of metal on pavement ended with a heart-breaking
snap as the boy's neck broke.
A flood of medical personnel rushed out of the building after hearing the car horns which preceded the crash. They realized quickly that
the boy was dying, but in spite of the violence of the crash, his body was still in fairly good condition. The side of his helmet indicated his
name, phone number, and in bright red letters, he had proudly proclaimed himself an organ donor. His body was immediately moved
onto a stretcher and carried to surgery; his death was held off through mechanical intervention, organ donation being his last gift to the
world he was leaving behind.
This small miracle of information was going to have unimaginable repercussions.