WARNING: Very High Angst Lemon, Proceed With Caution, Kleenex Warning
[Sequel to Tragic Secrets; Book 6 of the "Secrets" Arc, Final Installment of arc]
Author: Enigma
Written: October & November, 2000
Cumulative Rating: NC-17
Pairings: (1x2/2x1) (3x4/4x3) (5+S)
Category: Angst, yaoi, AU
Cumulative Warnings: Angst, lemon, yaoi, sap, AU, OOC
Be Prepared: Kleenex Warnings!! also: avoid Colas
DISCLAIMERS: I don't own Gundam Wing or any other anime or TV characters I use here, just the ideas in this story and some characters that are new are truly mine. Any reference to copyrighted material or trademarked goods should be considered an "homage" (yeah, right!) Don't sue me, even the lawyers wouldn't enjoy it, except of course for the Ashe and Jojo characters!
NOTE: Timeframe---after the war has ended and the Gundams were destroyed. //yada, yada, yada// = inner thoughts

Silencing The Secrets
Part 12

"I'm sorry, Mr. Winner, but the results are conclusive." The ophthalmic oncologist looked somewhat resigned to hearing yet another outburst from a dejected family. "You will not regain sight in your left eye. There was simply too much damage done to the optic nerve for even the regeneration techniques to repair."

Quatre sat silently, absorbing the news he had fully expected yet would never have been able to accept so easily if it hadn't been for the tumult that had surrounded him for the last few months. Trowa, nervous at his lover's silence, hovered protectively nearby. "I see," Quatre remarked softly. "Or rather, I don't see. For the rest of my life, 'I don't see.' Out of one eye at least." He seemed to accept this way too easily; it was setting nerves on edge throughout the room. "What is the likelihood, doctor, that I will become fully blind at a later date because of this?"

A sigh of relief left the cancer specialist's lips as he realized the young man in front of him, barely recovered enough to be fully autonomous truly was accepting the results so easily. "Well, there's no way to say for certain, but it is my experience that such things usually occur within the first six-months after surgery. You've made it this far, so I would say you have a good chance of retaining the level of sight you have now."

Nodding his head in understanding, Quatre remarked, "Then that will just have to do, now won't it?" Then he looked at Trowa who still seemed shaken by the pronouncement of the permanency of the blindness in one eye. "Trowa, you okay, koi?"

"Not really, Little One, but if you are able to accept this so easily than so should I."

"'Easily'? No, I'm not accepting it 'easily', I'm just being realistic." Quatre sighed. "I was expecting this to be the case anyway. I'm lucky to be alive, Trowa, yet I'm luckier still to have you and Laurel beside me. Now unless you have any medical objections, doctor, I believe we've gotten the information we came for." Rising, he extended a hand in gratitude to the doctor.

Then he turned to Trowa taking him by the hand and they walked out into the sunshine.

"Hmm, the sun feels good today, doesn't it, koibito?" Quatre smiled as he leaned his face upwards to maximize the sun on his face. Trowa took a moment to look his lover over wondering if there wasn't going to be much more made of the blindness issue. The blond hair had been growing back in and now there was a fine downy covering of it over the previously bald pate. The white satin eye-patch truly suited the young man beside him and Trowa frequently forgot it was even there unless someone mentioned it. Happy and healthy once more, Quatre was slowly returning to normal in his world-view as well. Overall, it was miraculous things hadn't gone worse and if it hadn't been for Laurel's timely intervention that one horrible night, Trowa knew he'd be standing somewhere alone right then. He spontaneously drew the living, breathing center of his world into his arms surprising Quatre completely. "Something wrong, Trowa?" He asked, concerned.

"No," Trowa smiled, kissing him briefly on the forehead as they used to do so often. "Actually, love, I just realized that there's nothing wrong at all. Absolutely nothing whatsoever."

Quatre chuckled softly, "Oh? Just figure that out now? I pretty much got that feeling back the day you 'liberated' Laurel from the hospital. For you, me, and her, you are quite correct, there's nothing wrong at all. But for our friends," he looked a bit sad before finishing, "there's still a world of trouble to get through. Now at least we can focus on fixing those problems and maybe get this wrapped up for all of us soon."

"Hmm," Trowa nuzzled his hair. "I'm sure we can get some progress there, too, love. But for now, how about you and I sneak off for an afternoon alone and celebrate the simple peace we've got?"

"Sounds good!" Quatre beamed. "Let's go!"

And they spent the afternoon looking at wedding things and laughing at the fact that all of the china patterns they looked at were too ugly to eat off of in the first place!

During the darkest of moment in his life, Heero Yuy had Junpei "Jack" Ryuzouji to guard him and help him find his way back to sanity. Duo Maxwell, however, had another guardian angel, Trowa Barton.

While Trowa was loyal beyond words to his fiancÚ, he also was loyal to all of those who had earned his trust, especially Duo. Feeling partially responsible for the traumatic events which had befallen Duo after he came to stay at the estate, especially the double traumas of the two psychiatrists who had taken advantage of him, Trowa felt all the more responsible for helping his friend regain his sanity. Based on this, he made a point of spending time with him daily.

Often the two friends did little more than share coffee or talk quietly for some time, but Trowa was absolutely set on making sure that none of the suicidal tendencies returned.

"You do realize, Duo," he commented one afternoon, "You are welcome to stay with us as long as you like. As I recall, you never even had the opportunity to look for a residence after the war."

Looking thoughtfully into his mug, Duo quietly asked, "Thanks, Trowa, but aren't you and Quatre about ready for more privacy here? You've had me underfoot for an awfully long time and with Laurel here to stay as well, doesn't it seem a little, well, crowded at times?"

Trowa bit back a laugh. "In this monstrosity of a house, Duo? Please, you must be joking. We have more room here than we'd know what to do with. Besides, how many times must I remind you that you are family and family should stay together when they are needed?"

"Family." Duo contemplated the word for long moments.

"Yes, 'family'. Is there a problem with that?" Trowa was concerned. The last thing he wanted for Duo was to make the American uncomfortable to the point where he decided to leave the estate. Too much had happened to risk such a separation now.

Finally, he looked up and smiled broadly. "No, Trowa, no problem at all. It's just I never had a family other than the orphanage when I was little and you guys now. Sometimes it just doesn't seem real, that's all. It's too good, too perfect, too wonderful." He shook his head still smiling. "The last thing I want is to lose this 'family' now that I have it. You, Quatre, Laurel, everyone here mean a great deal to me, I'd just not wish to wear my welcome out, that's all."

Trowa sighed in relief. "Don't worry about that, Duo. As Quatre's best friend and by extension my own besides Heero, you're welcome to live here as long as you wish."

"Heero, hmm, I wonder about how things will go when he makes it back, if he makes it back." Duo sounded somber. "Of course, I hope they all make it back with Wufei and Sally whole and healthy as well, but I wonder how his return will change things. I only remember bits and pieces of the times I spent with him over the years. I wish my memories would clarify."

Trowa placed a reassuring hand on Duo's shoulder, "Give it time, my friend. Just give it time."

Looking up through dark lashes, Duo commented softly, "I will, Trowa. I just hope it doesn't take too long or something very precious may be lost or even destroyed."

Ingenuity was the order of the day when Jack and Heero constructed a litter of sorts to carry the injured Wufei with them on their journey. He had grumbled that he could walk with a little help, but Gene forbade it. All the walking without medical treatment or nourishment had left him weak and the fever had increased since there hadn't been enough time for the antibiotics to have much effect just yet. After administering another injection of antibiotics plus a pain reliever, the four headed toward the town Wufei mentioned which Heero had found on the map.

"So, Gene," Wufei asked after awhile, "you're usually at the bottom of pointless nick-names, why do you keep calling Jack here 'Mr. J' and Heero 'Hannibal'?"

Gene chuckled at being so obvious. "Well, Wufei, you know me, I've always got an appropriate old television show to go with any occasion, and this is based on one called 'The A-Team' from, oh, the late twentieth century. It originated from America, I think, and it was a group who went around rescuing people or taking care of otherwise impossible tasks. I figure Heero is the leader, which makes him 'Hannibal', Jack over there is the tough, strong guy, which makes him match 'Mr. T', adjusted to fit, of course. Me? Well, I'm the wild and crazy guy, so I'm 'Mad Dog'!" Gene grinned at the last one knowing it meant he was more than a little insane, too, and feeling it fit after everything he'd done when he was around Heero.

"Hmph," Wufei groused, "Well, sounds like you've got the right group to base yourselves on. Good thing there wasn't a fourth member or I'd get re-named as well!"

Gene grinned slyly, "Now that you mention it, Wufei, there *was* a fourth member, a guy called 'Face'! So I guess that's who you get to be now!"

Heero chuckled knowing what was coming next.

Wufei, unfortunately, took the bait. "What, pray tell, was this 'Face' person like, though I'm afraid to ask?"

"Why, he was the resident 'pretty boy', of course! And since you fit the bill nicely, it just makes it even better!" Gene laughed expecting Wufei to take offence at this as Jack had when he attempted to give him the nick-name at the beginning of their odyssey.

"I see," Wufei sounded too calm about it and that made Heero a little nervous. "Finally someone other than Sally appreciates my appearance. Thank you, Gene."

Dumfounded that his victim was failing to behave as expected, Starwind fumbled for something to say and finally just commented, "You're welcome, Wufei."

Heero snickered openly and Jack laughed at Gene's discomfort. No one saw it, but Wufei looked quite pleased to have turned the doctor's own joke back against him.

After a lengthy period of walking, they arrived at the next town and were pleased to find the rumor was true about a Preventer doctor and that it was indeed Sally Po.

"What happened to you, Wufei?" She asked, concern crossing her features when they arrived.

"Nothing much," he remarked casually as she held him close for a tender embrace.

"Liar." She smiled lovingly at him, then turned to Heero, "The truth, please, Heero?"

Heero spent a few minutes explaining what they knew and what Wufei had told them, leaving Sally even more concerned than before. But any further complaints about the situation were cut off when power suddenly came back on. A cheer broke out as people were able to move freely without falling over objects in the dark, a greater danger in town than it had been on the highway. Suddenly, a radio crackled to life as well. It was the Preventers base camp notifying all of the personnel that the EMPs had been eliminated and the power restoration should be permanent. DH-1221 was not a dying colony any longer. True, it was badly damaged and would take years of repair work, but there was every hope of keeping it livable.

The "A-Team", now certain of the fate of both people they had come to rescue, was able to relax in relative confidence. Full light allowed Sally to follow up on Gene's work and she gave her approval of his efforts. She then left the men so she could go tend to the other patients as they waited for the radio frequencies to clear enough to report the location of the previously missing medical team and request relief from duty after their ordeal. Word came back later that they would be evacuated in a few days and a new team would move in to finish the work there.

The four men, tired themselves, gratefully accepted a few days of rest before being returned to the shuttle which would carry them back to Earth and hopefully the end this entire episode. Heero especially was eager to return, but not so eager that he wanted to walk back.

on to part 13

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