I sat down at Quatre’s desk and picked up the phone.
I had looked everywhere I could think of- searched every room, scoured the
grounds. I had even driven out to his office and back, no sign of him there
or on the streets. I had returned home hoping to find him waiting for me…
but he wasn’t here.
I was out of ideas… I needed help… Quatre had
been gone for hours… Where the hell could he be?
The phone rang in my ear. Once… Twice…
Please let him be there… please let him be there…
“Hello?” A sleepy voice on the other end said
in my ear.
“Heero? Is Quatre there?” I demanded, and then
realized that perhaps I should’ve let him wake up a bit first…
I could almost hear his confusion. “Trowa? What? Is
Quatre…?” A deep breath; I knew he was collecting himself on
the other end. “No… I don’t think so.” I heard a
soft grunt as if he turned over. “Duo’s not in bed though. Let
me go see.”
The rustle of blankets being flung aside. “Quatre’s
not home yet? Or he left? What happened?” He asked.
I swallowed hard. “I think I messed up.” I admitted.
“Badly.” Heero let me get away with that much for now, though
I knew he wouldn’t let it go.
“Lights are on downstairs in the studio…”
Heero murmured in my ear. “I don’t see him, but… Duo?
Is Quatre here somewhere?”
A murmur of reply. Then: “I don’t know. Trowa’s
looking for him.”
The phone made an odd noise and then it was Duo’s voice
in my ear. “What happened Tro?”
“He’s not there Duo? Please? Tell me the truth.
He doesn’t have to talk to me…”
“He’s not. I’d tell you if he was.”
Duo sounded worried. “Trowa? What happened?”
I took a deep breath. “We watched, that is… Quatre
hadn’t seen all of the tape yet… it was on the news again…”
I heard Duo make an understanding noise. “And you argued
about something?” He guessed, sounding faintly guilty. I knew he had
overheard my conversation with Quatre about the wisdom of him watching the
“No,” I assured him. “No…it was later.
After we went to bed… I had a nightmare… and when I woke up,
he was right next to me and I….” I could still taste the faint
blood in my mouth from where I’d bitten down on my scream.
Quatre had been up right beside me- one hand on my elbow,
his voice in my ear, and it had been too close to the dream… I don’t
know what I had said to him, but I caught the horrified look that had crossed
his face… the guilt… he’d been gone a moment later….
“He was gone before I could think… and then I
figured he was just giving me space… but I looked everywhere and I
can’t find him… and one of the bikes is gone…”
“Breathe,” Duo said, his voice level and calm,
and I nearly laughed. Wasn’t I supposed to be the one calming him?
I was supposed to be over my little issues…
I did as he asked, took a deep breath.
“Tro- where would he go?”
“If not to you or Wufei- I don’t know. One of
his sisters? I checked his office already…”
“Did you call Wufei?”
“No, not yet.” Duo and Heero had seemed more logical
to try first for some reason… I’d have to call Wufei next…
and then maybe Rashid?
“Heero’s calling him now. What about his sisters?
Which ones would he be more likely to go to first?”
Honestly, I couldn’t see Quatre going to any of them.
The guys were the more logical choice… I said this to Duo and heard
“What about a place?”
“His office- I checked that already…”
There was a murmur of conversation on the other end, barely
audible, as if Duo had put his fingers over the phone. I heard him sigh.
“Wufei says that he’s not there. He’s heading over to
you though, and we’ll be there soon too.”
“You don’t have to…” I protested,
and heard Duo chuckle.
“I think I owe you at least… We’ll be there
soon Tro. Don’t worry- we’ll find him.”
I hung up the phone and put my head in my hands. Where had
he gone? Quatre was not the type to run.
I should’ve told him earlier. I’d been able to
hide my nightmares from him for years… I hadn’t had one for
ages- until Duo came back and I’d had to revisit my own personal hell
to help him…
The memory washed over me… I remembered the feel of
the sweat sliding down my back in the suit, facing down Quatre in Wing,
so sure in my knowledge that Quatre would never ever hurt me- he couldn’t…
“Turn back into the nice guy I once knew…”
I had asked, knowing that he would. My Quatre would come back- I knew it…
But I hadn’t managed it. The Quatre in my memory screamed
“What did I just say? Don’t get any closer to
Then the blast…
I shivered, caught in my memories for a moment. I forced myself
to center. I had lost Quatre then- I couldn’t do it again now…
Where was he? What had my nightmares awakened in him?
Quatre had nightmares. Nightmares that made him wake up panting,
tears streaking down his face, nightmares that made him cling to me for
the rest of the night… had mine brought his back to life?
I reached for the phone again; ready to try the next number
on the list, knowing though that Quatre’s sisters’ would hide
Quatre from me if they thought it wise- or if he asked them too. But it
didn’t matter- I was going to find him…
The phone rang as my hand touched it, and I snatched it up.
“Yes, this is the Sisters of Mercy Hospital.”
My heart stopped. “We are looking for the next of kin for a Mr. Quatre
Winner? We’re afraid that there has been an accident. May we speak
to Mr. Trowa Barton please?”
It took me a minute to find my voice. “I’m Trowa
“Mr. Barton, Mr. Winner had an accident on his motorcycle,
the doctors are with him now… if you could just come down….?”
I don’t remember hanging up the phone. I was out the
front door before I realized it, and only Duo’s arms stopped me from
running to the hospital.
“Tro?” He caught me and held me tight.
“He’s at the hospital- they called- he had an
“We’ll take you.” Heero on the other side,
herding me to the car, Wufei’s- I realized, and then I was in the
backseat, shivering, as Heero and Duo put their arms around my shoulders
and held me close.
“What did the hospital say? What’s his condition?”
“The doctors are with him… I don’t know…
I don’t even remember if I hung up…” Duo’s arms
tightened around me.
“Breathe.” He reminded me. “The doctors
are with him, that’s good.”
I nodded for him and felt Heero’s hand on my hair.
“I should’ve grabbed on to him. I just…
his voice… it was too much… I forgot where I was…”
“It’s okay Tro,” Duo’s hand rubbed
my back. “It will be okay.”
How was he so sure? It was a fragile comfort, but I clung
to it anyway.
The ride to the hospital was quiet after that. I couldn’t
talk. I didn’t want to speculate on what was waiting for us there,
and the guys stayed quiet too, their warmth comforting and supportive on
either side of me. I was glad they were there- I didn’t want to be
I wasn’t paying much attention to my surroundings, so
when Wufei stopped the car, it took me a moment to realize that we were
at the hospital. We piled out at the emergency entrance and dashed inside.
Wufei questioned the nurses at the desk once we got there,
leaving me in the middle of the room with my other two friends. Duo still
had a grip on me, Heero’s hand was on my back and I wondered if they
were making sure that I wasn’t going to go wandering off looking for
Wufei was back a moment later. “They want you to sign
some papers, then you can go back and see him.”
He lifted my hand and placed the pen in it, flipping pages
as I scribbled my name over and over. Once I finished, Heero pulled the
pen from my fingers and accompanied Wufei back to the desk, leaving me to
“I should’ve asked… his condition…”
I realized once they were gone. Why hadn’t I even asked?
“He’s gotta be somewhat okay, Tro,” Duo
assured me. “They wouldn’t make you do all that first if he
“You think so?”
“Haven’t I spent enough time in hospitals to be
an expert?” He teased and I managed a smile for him.
“He has to be… I don’t know what I’d
do…” Came out before I could stop the thought. Duo nodded, his
hand patting my back.
“I know, Tro, I know.”
Heero appeared in front of us. “He’s going to
be fine.” He was smiling.
“He twisted his wrist, got scraped up a bit, but that’s
all. They’ll only let one person in right now, but we’ll wait
here for you, okay?” Relief flooded through me.
“Thanks,” Duo let go of me and I turned to the
door where the nurse beckoned to me.
The nurse led me to a curtained off area, one of several in
the emergency ward. She pulled the curtain aside and ushered me in.
Quatre lay on the bed, eyes closed, a bandage on his temple,
his wrist in a wrap. His chest rose and fell in an even rhythm.
I have many names for Quatre, a habit I started during the
war, when he let slip that he liked pet names. I have names that make him
smile, ones that make him laugh, others that make him wince and crinkle
his nose at me. He once told me that God has many names, and I can understand
why. Don’t people tend to use as many terms as they can to describe
what they cherish?
And yet, when I stood by his bedside, I couldn’t manage
to bring one to my lips. I was simply so grateful to watch his chest rise
and fall, to see for myself that he was still living…
His eyes blinked open. “Trowa?” He sounded fuzzy
“It’s me, beloved.” I bent down beside him,
touched my fingers to his cheek. “How are you feeling?”
“Like I crashed the bike,” he smiled faintly.
“You shouldn’t have been out on it.”
His expression darkened. “Oh Trowa… I didn’t
know… I’m so sorry…”
“Hush, my light.” I shook my head at him. “The
newscast just brought some things back for me. That’s not your fault…”
“You wouldn’t have nightmares like that except
for me.” He closed his eyes. “I don’t know how you ever
managed to forgive me…”
“Because it wasn’t you.”
“But it was…”
“No. You warned me. You told me to go away, you knew
what Zero was going to do. I just wasn’t listening.” I bent
down and touched my forehead to his. His eyes blinked open, guilty and haunted
I continued: “But love- the worst thing of all was tonight.
You were gone and I couldn’t find you- I thought I lost you…”
“That’s how I felt- back then...” He interrupted
me. “And it was my fault…”
“As tonight was mine. I should’ve told you about
my nightmares. Should’ve told you that there still are things that
set them off.”
“I should’ve known. When you woke up and screamed
when I…” Quatre stopped for a moment. “I thought it would
be best to give you space…”
I lightened the tone deliberately. “My heart, we live
in a house with how many rooms? I think we have plenty of space. You didn’t
need to leave. Where were you going?” Please don’t say you meant
to leave for good…
“To the office- I wanted to… clear my head, I
guess. I took the long way, it wasn’t well lit and there was debris
in the road.” He lifted his hand up to touch his temple. “To
be honest, I wasn’t really focused either… I couldn’t
believe I had missed that all this time…”
“You didn’t.” I stopped him. “They
haven’t been so bad for a very long time. Just… recent events
set them up a bit again.”
He looked guiltier, and I fought down my feelings of frustration.
“Beloved, listen to me. The nightmares are bad, yes. But there was
nothing so terrifying for me as thinking that I lost you- no nightmare can
He reached up and touched my cheek. “I still wish you
didn’t have them…”
“We all have them,” I said, turning my head and
kissing his fingers. “That’s one of the prices we pay for surviving-
but love, it’s worth it to me, do you see? You bring me such happiness.
Don’t let these few shadows take that away- promise me?”
“I promise.” He smiled faintly. “But don’t
hide them from me anymore either, all right?”
I nodded and bent to kiss him. “I promise. Now, let’s
get you home.”
Fiction : GW :