He always came back. But not this time. Who can help Relena after her spirit is broken by Heero's death? 4xR, oneshot
By: Katryn Parker
Disclaimer: I do not own Gundam Wing. Just in case you thought I did.
She already knew when she picked up the phone.
She knew what they were going to say.
"Hey Lena, it's Duo."
That's how her voice had sounded ever since he'd left.
"Lena...you might want to sit down for this."
One tear dripped onto the paper at the desk.
And a few more.
"He's dead, isn't he?"
His voice was choked when he responded.
Relena had always known that she and Heero could never have a normal life. Heero's life was death, and that's all there was to him. His life was killing, eating, and sleeping, and nothing more. His life could never be a family. Could never be her.
When the war had started, he'd gone away. Somehow she'd known he could die, and somehow she'd known that it was the last time she'd ever see him as he left with a simple goodbye. No kiss, no hug, no 'I love you'. It was the last thing to assure her that he had never loved her, and that it had all been some fantasy of hers. He was everything she wasn't, and she wanted him to complete her. But he couldn't.
Only one of them had stayed behind, leaving the other four on their own. Forever the pacifist, Quatre didn't want a new mobile suit. He just wanted to live his life and do what he could to save more lives. He'd been there just a few minutes after she'd called about Heero, barely able to form her words through the sobs.
"He's dead, I know." His voice was measured and calm on the other end of the line, but Relena knew he was hiding his pain. Quatre hated to see people die. She was like him.
"No...don't say it...just come over here, please."
She walked to the mirror and looked at her reflection carefully. Her eyes were red and swollen, her face pale. At twenty-three she hadn't even had her first kiss, because she was always waiting around for Heero. And that's how it had been ever since she'd first met him all those years ago. He hadn't changed much. He'd never warmed up to her.
She put up her hair, meticulously tucking every strand into the ponytail holder on the back of her head. Would she be empty now too? Carrying on his legacy?
The mirror was broken when Quatre got there, his blue eyes widening at the broken glass on the floor and her bloodied knuckles. She wasn't prone to fits of anger, but the woman looking back out of the mirror sickened her to no end. The woman in the mirror was weak. It made her understand why Heero could never have loved her.
She told Quatre as much, sobbing onto his shoulder as he delicately wrapped bandages around her hands, and then proceeded to pick up the glass off the floor. He didn't cry once that night as he rocked her back and forth until she went to sleep, staying and sitting on the couch and comforting her again and again when she woke up. She didn't know what she would've done without him.
Everyone had always thought that Quatre was the weakest of them, always unwilling to fight.
Maybe he was the strongest for the very same reason.
Heero's funeral was small and simple, but Relena supposed that's how he would've wanted it. His final resting place was also quite appropriate; in a mobile suit at the bottom of the ocean. Exactly where he'd wanted to be all those years ago when Relena found him washed up on the beach.
The priest talked about the good things he'd done in his life; fighting for colonial independence, and so on and so forth. Relena knew that none of it was true. She wanted to tell everyone that, but Quatre's solemn presence at her side stayed her insanity. Heero had fought because he had been brought up to fight. It was all he knew.
After the funeral they all went to Relena's big house and drank their sadness away, like the grownups they were. Had any of them really had a youth? No. They were all soldiers in their own right.
She just listened dully as Duo left, asking Quatre to stay with her. He agreed to it, and when they asked she nodded. She just wanted to go to sleep.
Relena looked into the broken mirror every day, trying to find what she'd lost. But it was gone. Shattered in pieces on the vanity, where Quatre had deposited them the day Heero had died.
Quatre didn't like her sulking. He constantly asked her why she was looking in the mirror, and she usually didn't answer. Today, she did.
"I'm looking for myself...because I'm broken, just like the mirror."
Aggravation seeped into his voice. "You're not broken, Relena. Just lost."
Quatre moved the broken mirror and all of its pieces to his room. Relena didn't know what he planned on doing with them, and she didn't really care. She'd loved Heero and longed for him for eight long years, and she wasn't going to stop now.
They ate together every night, and during the day Quatre went out for business and did some things around the house and in his own room. He kept mostly to himself, because everything was dark and sad all of the time. Nothing was right. She kept on expecting Heero to walk in the door and throw his bag and jacket on the floor, then walk into the kitchen and get a glass of water. Because he always came back.
One night at dinner, they actually spoke.
"When do you plan on getting your life back on track?"
Relena looked at him as if he was crazy. "How much of a life do I have now? Politics have gone to hell with the war...Heero is gone..."
Quatre had some unreadable expression on his face. Her interest sparked, the first "spark" of anything that she'd felt since her angry outburst the day of Heero's death. "Why do you ask?"
He frowned. "Because I care about you."
It was the first time he'd said it out loud.
And it helped a great deal.
Someone was worried.
Someone still cared.
It was on her mind day and night now. If someone actually cared about her, how was she supposed to keep on living like she was alone?
She emerged from her room the next day with a small smile. "Do you want to go out to lunch today?"
Quatre seemed shocked at first, and then a smile spread onto his face as well. "Sure."
They met at a restaurant by his office at noon, and he got a table for two. He ordered a soda with a burger and fries. She got the same thing, because she'd never been there before.
They ate. They laughed. They talked about anything but Heero. Of course, there was still the constant reminder that it was a subject being avoided and not something that either of them was coming to terms with, but it was still nice. Again, she didn't know what she would've done if he hadn't been there with her. He was doing more to help her recover than anything else.
Topics of conversation ranged from the weather to the food, to the other pilots, excluding Heero. Duo and Hilde were getting married as soon as the war was over, though nobody knew when that would be. They were both soldiers.
"I hope that neither of them gets hurt," Relena said quietly, "I wouldn't want this happening to them."
It obviously bothered him. They'd been having a nice time and then she'd turned it around and brought up Heero again.
He was done with this.
Relena frowned as he brought his bags to the front door, crossing her arms over her chest. "Where are you going?" she asked quietly, watching him walk back to his room. He stopped.
"I'm going home. It doesn't seem like you need me anymore."
"But you can't go...I still need you," she replied weakly. He walked towards her, putting his hands on her arms. He was taller than her.
"No, Relena. You've got to learn to live on your own. I won't be here forever."
"Well then...I want you to stay. You don't have to care for me anymore...I just don't want to be in this house alone."
He'd caused her to feel, because she really did want him to stay. Things had slowly gotten easier, and when he had threatened to leave she'd panicked. She wanted him there with her. Not because she needed him to make sure she didn't do anything stupid and lapse back into depression...but because she wanted him.
She wanted him.
She wanted Quatre.
One day he had a cut on his thumb.
She heard him cursing in his room, and wondered if she should go in. He hadn't allowed her in his room before, and she didn't know when things would change.
She opened the door. He was sitting on his bed, putting a tissue over the wound, and his eyes widened when he saw her enter. "Relena...uh..."
Nothing reached her ears.
Because across from her was the mirror, whole again.
She looked at her shattered reflection, the web-like cracks distorting the image. Walking closer, she saw that the pieces were glued together, put back in exactly the right place. "You did this...for me?" she said quietly.
"I decided it was time for someone to put you back together."
She ran her hand over the beautiful imperfection of its reflective surface, and then turned towards him to see that he had stood. "Thank you."
Her hands found their way to his arms and she slowly closed her eyes and tilted her head up, waiting for something, anything.
His warm lips met hers. Her first kiss.
And when she looked back at the mirror, it seemed that the cracks were gone.
A/N: OK...this was completely out of the blue. But I like it. OK, I like it a lot. I absolutely love this pairing...I mean, they're both pacifists and they both care deeply for their loved ones...both come from important families. Talk about a match made in heaven.
Now, don't get me wrong; I love Heero. I love Heero with a passion. But the only way for Relena and Quatre to end up together is if something happens to him...and I can't see his true character ever falling in love.
Sooo that's the story. Please review!