Chapter 2: "Carved in Blood"


"Where are you off to, kagerou?"

I grit my teeth at the voice and keep going, walking down the hall towards the stairs.

He appears by my side, walking calmly and smirking. "What's up, chibi? What're you up to?"

*Chibi*?? "None of your business," I growl, keeping a good distance between us. "Go away."

"I see you fetched your little pricker from your room." His golden eyes stray towards the katana in my belt. "Off on one of your silly missions, then?"

I grunt, hoping he'll get the hint and bug off.

Not likely.

"So what do you have to do this time?" he pesters, turning and walking backwards in front of me so I am forced to look at him as I storm down the hall. "Save the world? Rescue another damsel in distress?" His tone turns suggestive, a leer stretching his generous mouth. "Get laid?"

I almost run into a corner. "Kisama," I sputter, shoving him aside roughly and avoiding eye contact. "Get away from me!"

"Now why would I do that?"

Suddenly he reaches out and seizes my arm, yanking me back and turning me so I am facing him again. Startled by the sudden move, I merely stare up at him, breath caught in my throat.

His golden eyes burn into mine, his long gray hair framing his face as he lowers his head slightly, his voice a husky murmur by my ear. "When you get back...I can show you some fun, kagerou. You know where to find me..."

Heat rushes to my cheeks. "Baka yarou!!"



"All right, Deathscythe, let's kick some arse!!"


I grin wolfishly at the video monitor that flickers to life by my head, showing Heero's emotionless face as we blast just above the treetops, headed towards the base that is our target. "Yo, koi, wussup?" I greet cheerily.

Shinigami is off to kill some people.

Happy day. ^_^

"Duo, stop your caterwauling and keep your mind focused on the mission."

Friggin' party pooper. I make a face at him. "You're no fun."

He arches an eyebrow, but doesn't bother to reply.

"Target ahead. Something's wrong." Trowa's quiet voice interrupts my teasing, and I transfer my gaze to the screen showing our surroundings. Ahead I spot a large white building...and smoke billowing from it like great storm clouds.

"What the hell..?" I frown, leaning forward for a better look as we close in. "Did Q-man and Wufei already blow the joint by themselves?"

"It wasn't us." Quatre's worried face appears to my left on another screen. "It was like this when we got here, and we just arrived a few minutes ago."

"Keep your distance," Heero's cool tone butts in. "Wufei, take the back. I'll check the front. The rest of you wait here and look for resistance or any sign of a trap."

"Aye aye, cap'n," I say smartly, watching with a tinge of worry as Shenlong and Wing Zero dive down towards the smouldering mass of mobile suits and tanks.

~~..Who did this....?~~ Quatre's mental voice is quiet and a little apprehensive, but since I'm not sure whether he meant for us to hear his worries, I keep quiet. Faintly I sense Trowa's thoughts, but whatever he says, it is for the angel alone, and I can't make it out.

Hn. Love birds.

I smirk to myself. I wonder if they've done it yet...

Hehe.. ^_^

I could always give Trowa some pointers.. After all, I *did* sl--

::Duo..:: his voice is quiet but threatening. Oopsie. Looks like I thought a little too loud. Burning embarrassment is practically rolling off Quatre in waves, and Trowa is seething silently, though I sense mild embarrassment beneath it.

Huh. Go figure. Maybe he's a virgin...

This time, I keep my thoughts to myself.

"Duo." I come alert at Heero's voice, eagerly turning to his expressionless face on the monitor.

"What's up?"

"I want you to take a look at this. Maybe you'll understand it."

I frown slightly, gunning the engines and shooting downwards. What could they have found that neither the Prince of the Stars or a dragon could identify?

I am unharnessed and scurrying out of the cockpit almost before Deathscythe has landed properly, spreading my wings and letting a draft of wind send me sailing down as Shenlong and Wing Zero stand silent sentinals over me, the pilots inside ever on the lookout for a trap of some sort.


I watch with a calm face as Duo sails down from his gundam to inspect our discovery, but inside I am apprehensive, my heart a little quicker than usual as I sit tensely, ready to lash out at a moment's notice if anything so much as *breathes* dangerously in the braided baka's direction.

Ch'. Something must be wrong with me... I scowl inwardly. Since when am I protective of anyone? Especially short little braided idiots who talk a mile a minute and happen to kill people for a living?

I watch as he scuttles over the wreakage.

Braided idiots with nice asses and sweet mouths.

Well that answers my question.

//Well?// I straighten slightly as he comes to a halt and simply stands, staring down at the ground. He is silent for a long moment, and I shift restlessly until finally he extends his wings, flapping them slowly and lifting himself into the air for a better look, eyes glued to the ground. He perches on the shoulder of Wing Zero, chewing on his lips, his thoughts in a turmoil, too dark and hidden for me to discern. //Duo?//


::What is it?:: Trowa's quiet voice is followed by Quatre's anxious one.


--do you recognize it or not?--

With a mental twist of impatience, I cut off their thoughts, feeling the connection we share go unusually silent and dark as I focus on the God of Death perched on my shoulder.


~~I recognize it.~~

His voice is dull and emotionless, his violet eyes hooded as he simply stares at the design carved into the very ground and filled with blood.

//What is it?//


Slowly he leans back, tilting his head to the sky and closing his eyes, an expression close to pain flitting across his face.

~~It's her...~~

Something inside me tightens, but I refuse to accept it as a flash of jealousy. //Her? Her who?//

His mental voice is so quiet I barely catch it.



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