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The Trials and Errors of Memories.

Chapter Text

After the war ended the pilots, or at least Duo, had always made it a point to joke about crazy things they had done or about the injuries they had gotten during the war when they had their weekly get togethers. The usual  comments were “I do NOT have a scar on the inside, Duo!” or “You asked me to punch you! Did you really need to hit back that hard?!” or maybe even, “So are male acrobats usually shirtless or are you just being used for fanservice Tro?” One time there was even, “Wait, Heero played fetch with dogs using a pineapple!?” “I couldn’t find a stick.”

Needless to say, their weekly get togethers were never boring.

One thing that was always brought up, mostly by Duo, had to do with Heero. It was:

“Ya know, it always amazes me that Ro doesn’t have any permanent damage from the time that he blew himself up. The man’s one lucky bastard.”

The comment would be met with agreements from the others, sans Heero of course.

Apparently the comment turned out to be false as they would later find out.

Quatre was the first one to notice that something was wrong with Heero.

It was Tuesday, a day that the two pilots normally got together for lunch. The two were running a few errands that Quatre needed to do before the two of them went to a cafe that the CEO was wanting to try. On their way to the cafe, they passed by a bakery that had some freshly baked pies and cobblers cooling in the window, the smell from them coming out from the door as they passed.

“Oh, wow. Doesn't that smell delicious, Heero?” He said, his full attention to the baked goods. When the other didn’t reply back, that’s when he noticed something.

The other pilot was no longer walking next to him. Concerned, he stopped walking and looked behind him to find his companion. Heero had stopped right in front of the bakery’s window, looking at the baked goods. Quatre took a closer look, seeing that Heero actually had a far off-look in his eyes. He walked over to him, waving a hand in front of his face.

“Heero?” He asked, trying to get the other’s attention. He was startled when he saw a signal tear go down his face.

“Heero?” He tried again, shaking the other this time. It seemed to do the trick for Heero came back to reality, the far-off look in his eyes receding as he blinked a few times. When he was fully back to reality, he looked at Quatre.

“I’m sorry Quatre. Were you saying something?” He questioned.

“Heero are you alright?” Quatre questioned instead.

“I am. Why do you ask?” Heero said, tilting his head some.

“Because you spaced out on me and started to cry.” The blond stated. This caused the other to blink.

“I did?” He asked. He brought a hand to his face, surprised when he felt the wet streak. How come he hadn’t felt that till now?

“Heero, are you sure that you’re alright?” The other questioned. He was still clearly worried about what happened.

“I’m sure Quatre. I’m sorry I worried you.” He answered, starting to walk again. Quatre walked with him, deciding to let the issue drop for the moment.

Though he did later go back and bought Heero the cobbler that his gaze had seemed stuck on, much to Heero’s chagrin.

Trowa was the second person to notice that something was going on with Heero.

It was a Wednesday that found the two at the circus that Trowa helped out at. The taller of the two had some time before he had to go to rehearsal, so he suggested walking around the grounds for a bit to pass the time. Heero agreed, saying that it was a good idea.

“Hey, are you hungry for anything?” Trowa asked, looking at the other pilot.

Heero thought for a moment, “I could go for something to eat.” He answered.

Trowa nodded at the answer and headed over to a nearby food stand, coming back a couple of minutes later with something for the both of them. He handed one of the hand sized baskets to the other.

“Thanks. What did you get us?” The Japanese pilot questioned, accepting the basket.

“Deep fried oreos.” He replied, sitting down on a nearby bench with the other, “They’re pretty good, I sneak them when I can.”

Heero shook his head, not even wanting to know if Trowa was serious or not. He picked up an oreo, looking it over before eating it. Trowa was already eating his, his attention diverted away from the other pilot. He had finished his second cookie before he remembered about the other.

“So how do you like them?” Trowa inquired, popping another cookie into his mouth. He didn’t get an answer right away, assuming that the Japanese pilot was eating another cookie so he wasn’t bothered by it. Though when he didn’t hear anything for a couple of minutes, he got worried and looked at his friend. Heero was staring out into space, an oreo hanging limply between his index and middle finger. Trowa remembers Quatre mentioning that Heero had spaced out the last time the two of them were out together. He believes that this is another one of those moments.

“Heero?” He questioned, poking the other in the cheek. He didn’t receive an answer but he did get a bit of a scare when he noticed a tear go down Heero’s cheek.

“Heero?” He shook the other this time. It did the trick since Heero snapped back into reality a few minutes later. He blinked, looking at Trowa.

“Did you say something Trowa?” He asked. ‘Please tell me I didn’t space out again…’

“Are you okay Heero?” Trowa countered.

“Yes. Why are you asking?” Heero replied. He wouldn’t admit it, but he was dreading the answer.

“Because you spaced out on me then proceeded to cry.” The Russian stated.

“I did?” He questioned. He touched his face, feeling the new wet streak, ‘Damn it. Not again…’ What the hell was going on?

“Are you sure you’re okay?” He asked. He was concerned at this point.

“I’m sure. Come on, let’s get these finished. You got a rehearsal to go to remember?” He answered, going back to eating the oreos. Trowa let it drop, eating his own oreos.

After the rehearsal, he did get a stuffed white tiger from one of the game booths for Heero. The plush toy spent the rest of the day in Heero’s jacket.

Duo and Wufei were the third ones to notice that something was wrong with Heero.

It was Thursday and the three of them were at a quaint tea shop that Wufei was wanting to look around at. Thankfully for Duo the shop did sell different types of coffee as well, much to the enjoyment of the coffee addict. Though Heero did have to make sure that the two didn’t kill each other.

“Are you crazy Wuffers? Coffee is way more better than lousy old tea.” Duo said.

“Tea’s healthier for the body and it’s easier to make than coffee.” Wufei countered, looking over a container of green tea.

Duo rolled his eyes, “Ro, back me up here. Tell Fei that coffee is obviously better than plain old tea.”

Wufei shook his head, “Yuy, please inform Maxwell that he wouldn’t crash so much at work if he drank more tea instead of coffee.”

The two waited for a cue from the other to see who he would agree with. When they didn't hear anything for a couple of minutes, they both turned to looked at their comrade. Heero had stopped listening to them, his gaze stuck on a couple of mint leaves that were in his hand. When the two looked closer, they noticed that their friend was spaced out completely.

“Ro?” “Yuy?” Duo and Wufei asked at the same time. Duo waved his hand in front of Heero’s face while Wufei shook him as an attempt to get their friend’s attention. The two of them ended up receiving a shock when they saw two tears going down Heero’s face.

“Heero?” They tried again, doubling their efforts. It took them a good solid five minutes before Heero returned to reality. Before either one of them could ask if he was alright, the Japanese pilot dropped the leaves he was holding. He made his way to the front, paid for his items, and hurried out the door of the shop. Duo and Wufei just stood there, confused by the events that had transpired.

“What the fuck just happened here…?”

“Your guess is as good as mine, Maxwell.”

“I’m suffering from some brain damage.”




Well, that’s certainly not what the pilots were expecting Heero to tell them when the four had cornered him in his office that Friday. They all stared at him in shock, taking the time to process the announcement. About 15 minutes passed before the next move was made.

“F-For how long…?” Quatre questioned, being the first one to break the silence.

“Since the war.” Heero replied.

Duo ran his hands through his bangs, sitting down in one of the chairs that was in the office, “Shit, Ro… When did it even happen man?”

“I’m positive it happened when I tried to self destruct during the war. I was flung from a great distance from the explosion and landed head first.” Heero clarified, lacing his fingers together.

“How bad is it?” Trowa quizzed.

“It’s effecting my memories, especially the ones of before the war. I have a hard time remembering things about the people who were close to me before I became a pilot. It’s like the memories are there, I just can’t really remember them right off the bat. I’ve noticed that certain smells trigger those memories back to me.” Heero elaborated.

“So that time we went by the bakery?”

“It gave me a memory of my mom in the kitchen. I was helping her bake a cobbler.”

“And that time at the circus?”

“A memory of my dad, my brother and I. We were at a fair or something and dad gave us fair food for dinner.”

“What about the time you, Maxwell, and I were at the tea shop?”

There was silence for a few minutes, “It was… a memory of a childhood friend I was close with. I think she might still be around but I can’t remember her in clear detail like I can with my brother.”

There was silence again for about 10 minutes until..

“Wait, you have a brother?!” The four of them exclaimed.

“Yes. He’s older than me by five years.” He responded.

“Well that settles it!” Duo determined, standing up and slamming his hand down on Heero’s desk, “We’re gonna to help our buddy Ro find his older brother and his childhood friend!”

“You guys don’t have to-” Heero started, only to get cut off.

“You’re right, we don’t have to but we want to. You’re our friend Heero. This is important for you and we’re going to help you.” Quatre stated.

“We’re gonna be there for ya every step of the way.” Duo added. Heero looked shocked then turned to face Trowa and Wufei, who both nodded in agreement. A small smile graced his face.

“Thank you. All of you.”

“No problem buddy.”

Chapter Text

“Thanks again for coming with me to the bookstore Nii-san!” Heero exclaimed as he and his older brother entered the bookstore with their mother right behind them.

His older brother chuckled, “It’s no problem Otouto. What do you want to look at first?”

“I picked last time we came here together. It’s Nii-san’s turn this time.” The younger one stated.

“Ah, if it’s my turn then mind if we go to the crime and mystery section? Sofu suggested a book that I want to find.” The older of the two explained.

“Okay.” The six year old said, following his older brother to the section that he wanted to look at.

“Heero?” Heero blinked, coming out of his trance and looking at the visitor who was standing in the doorway of his office.

“Quatre, I didn’t hear you knock. I hope you weren’t waiting too long.” He said.

Quatre shook his head, entering the brunet’s office with a bag in his hand and sitting down in the chair in front of his desk, “It was only for a minute or two. What were you thinking about?”

“A memory of my older brother and I. Mom had taken us to the bookstore and I was telling him it was his turn to pick which section we went to first since I had picked the last time we went.”

“Are they getting easier to remember?” Quatre asked.

“Kind of. It depends on the memory. I’ve taken to writing them down in a book though just in case.” Heero clarified.

“Speaking of books, I got you something. I think it might help with your situation.” Quatre informed, digging through the bag he had with him. After a moment, he pulled out a matte green spiral bound sketchbook. He handed it to Heero, “I know it’s not much but I figured you could sketch your loved ones in it when the memory is still fresh in your head.”

Heero accepted the book, “Thank you Quatre. This means a lot.”

Quatre smiled, “You’re welcome Heero. I also got you some art supplies to use for the sketchbook.” He said, handing Heero the bag that had the supplies in it.

Heero accepted the bag from Quatre, setting it on his desk then turning his attention to the sketchbook. He opened the book, getting to work. The two sat in a comfortable silence, the only noise in the room being the AC and the scratch of pencil against paper.

Quatre broke the silence, “Hey Heero?”

“Hmm?” Heero didn’t look up.

“Can we talk about your parents a bit?”

The sound of pencil scratching stopped.

The blond panicked a bit, “We don’t have to if you don’t want to! We can talk about something else-”

“No, no, it’s fine. It’s just been awhile since someone asked me that.” He explained, setting the pencil down, “Where do you want me to start?”

“Wherever you feel like starting.” He replied. Things were silent for a few more minutes until-

“My mom was a beautiful woman, with hair slightly darker than mine and blue grey eyes. When she wasn’t looking after my brother and I, she was working. I can’t fully remember what her job was but sometimes she would take us on her business trips.”

“She sounds like a lovely person.” Quatre said.

“She was.” Heero agreed, a hint of a small smile gracing his lips.

“What about your father?” Quatre questioned.

It took Heero a bit longer this time around, “My father was an engineer. He was the one who designed Bulge actually.”

“You mean-”

“The thing that OZ used to take a colony hostage with? Yep.”

Quatre didn’t say anything, letting Heero continue.

“He was a good man though. He took care of us when mom was working.” Heero stated.

“It sounds like he had good intentions.” Quatre said, “It's possible he didn't know what it would be used for, or didn't know what OZ was capable of.”

“Yeah, possibly.” Heero agreed.

Quatre thought for a moment, “For what it’s worth, I’m sure that your parents are proud of you.”

Another small smile graced Heero’s lips, “Thank you Quatre.”

“You’re welcome Heero.”

“Hey Heero?”

Heero looked up from his sketchbook. It was the pilots’ designated lunch break and since he was the first one as usual, he had decided to spend the time using his sketchbook as he waited for the others. His lunch consisting of a turkey sandwich, a thermos of soup, and a juice box having been abandoned.

“Hey Trowa. What’s up?” Heero greeted, setting his pencil down.

“Well I was going to ask if the sketch book Quatre got you was helping but it looks like I have my answer.” Trowa said, sitting down with his own lunch, which consisted of a panini, a bottle of fruit punch, and a container of grapes.

"It's been helping better than the notebook I was writing in earlier today." Heero stated, setting his sketchbook to the side.

Trowa nodded his understanding, "That's good. I'm glad you found something that helps."

Heero smiled slightly, "Thank you. I'm still having some issues with remembering certain memories but I should be able to make more progress now that I have the sketchbook. I think Quatre gave me too many colored pencils though."

"You'll need all those extra pencils when the ones you use break or get too small to use." Trowa chuckled, a small smirk on his face as he opened his container of grapes and popped one into his mouth.

"I had to leave the supply bag in my office just so I could come to lunch." Heero groaned, reaching for his juice box and poking the straw into it.

Trowa laughed, "You realize you don't have to carry all of it with you, right?"

Heero lightly tapped the sketchbook, "I just got this today Trowa. I haven't had time to run the stuff home yet."

Trowa hummed, "True." He picked up his panini and took a bite.

"Besides, I believe there would be a 50% chance that Duo would take them for his mechanic sketches." Heero stated, opening his thermos of soup and taking a sip from it.

"Knowing him, he would." Trowa agreed after swallowing his food, "I've seen him stash some in his desk.”

Heero shook his head, "I'm going to have to find a hiding place for them then."

"You could always just raid his desk." Trowa suggested.

"He booby trapped his desk ever since Henderson raided his desk for a stapler." Heero reminded.

"True, he did. Good thing I know where he hid the triggers." Trowa said innocently.

"....You helped him set the traps didn't you?" Heero questioned.

Trowa sipped his drink in response, smirk not leaving his face.

Heero facepalmed, "And you three wonder why I'm constantly adding more tire locks to my moped."

Trowa snorted, "You have more locks on it than there are locks in this building."

"Yeah because you, Duo, and Wufei keep stealing the damn thing." Heero said.

Trowa shrugged, "It's always there... just waiting to be taken.”

"My moped is not a source of your joyriding." Heero stated, setting his soup down.

"If you say so." Trowa told him as he took another bite of his food.

Heero shook his head again, picking up his turkey sandwich and taking a bite out of his food.

Trowa hid his smirk behind his food, amusement pouring off of him.

Heero swallowed his food, "You know, one of these days the universe is going to get back at you for constant moped theft."

"How? By stealing my bike?" Trowa asked, "I dare the universe to try."

"Oh no, that would be too easy." Heero said, "The universe would do something more complicated."

"Oh? Gonna have me fall off the tightrope then?" Trowa joked.

"The universe does not want you dead. Yet." Heero stated, "No. You see one of these days you'll fall for someone. But the universe will make so that the person you fall for has little siblings."

Trowa arched an eyebrow, his one visible eye showing his amusement, "Is that so?"

Heero nodded, "Yes. Little siblings tend to be protective of their older siblings."

"You sound like you have knowledge in that area." Trowa informed him.

"I have an older brother remember." Heero replied.

Trowa nodded, "Do you remember him well?"

Heero was silent for a few minutes, "Kind of."

"Do you want to talk about it?" Trowa asked softly.

"I'll need a few minutes. Certain things are still fuzzy." He said.

"Of course. Take your time." Trowa told him.

Heero was silent again for a while until he finally started, "His name is Masato. It means Justice in Japanese."

Trowa nodded. He stayed silent as he didn't want to interrupt Heero.

"Like I said the other day, he's five years older than me so he would be about 22 to 23 right now." Heero explained.

"Do you know where he is now?" Trowa asked.

"Sofu and Sobo's maybe? He was at our grandparents when our parents died." Heero stated.

"If you ever want to go look, I'll go with you, if you want." Trowa offered.

Heero smiled at that, "Thank you. Sadly, I don't think I remember the name of the city they lived in."

Trowa gave a small smile back, "The offer stands no matter what."

"I'll be sure to keep that in mind. If Duo doesn't run my DNA through the system first." Heero said.

"I think Sally might be trying to get all of our DNA in the system." Trowa deadpanned.

"You mean she hasn't yet?" Heero asked.

"She hasn't gotten Quatre's yet." Trowa smirked, "He's quite skilled in evading her."

"The small ones are fast." Heero commented.

Trowa nodded and grabbed another grape.

Heero had moved to the garden sometime towards the end of the day with his sketchbook. It was peaceful and some of the flowers reminded him of-

“I thought I might find you here.” A voice said. Heero didn’t even looked up this time.

“Am I actively being looked for, Wufei?” Heero asked, trading one colored pencil for the other as he continued on his drawing.

“I think Sally is wanting to scan your brain, so yes.” Wufei answered, sitting down next to him.

“I already told Sally that I have a doctors appointment.” Heero said.

Wufei shrugged, “I know. She ended up hijacking it.”

Heero shook his head, not even surprised at this point. The two sat in silence, Heero drawing in his sketchbook and Wufei listening to the sound of pencil scratching against paper.

Eventually, Wufei’s curiosity got the better of him and caused him to glance at what Heero was currently working on. He managed to catch glimpses of a six year old girl with short chocolate brown hair while her bangs faded into azure-ish white wearing a two toned blue dress.

“Is that her? Your childhood friend?” He asked, looking at Heero.

Heero nodded, “Yeah that’s her. That’s Nita.”

“Where are her eyes?” Wufei asked.

Heero stopped sketching, “I can’t remember them….”

Oh. Well that can now be counted on why Wufei shouldn’t give into his curiosity, “Oh... I’m sorry…”

“I remember that they were as bright as the sun though.” Heero stated.

“What do you remember about her?” Wufei questioned.

It didn’t take Heero as long as it did for his brother and his mom, “She had a sweet tooth. Baked goods were mostly her weakness and her main favorite was blackberry cobbler. Mom made one whenever she came over and I always asked to help.”

Wufei nodded, prompting Heero to continue.

“Her favorite animal was a white tiger and she loved drawing.” Heero explained.

“What made you think of her that time we were in the tea shop?” Wufei inquired.

“It was the mint leaves.” Heero started, “Nita always smelled like raspberries and mints on some level. Raspberries were one of her favorite fruits and one of her grandmothers were teaching her how to make mint tea from the leaves. Her face lit up in an adorable smile whenever she told me about it.”

Wufei noticed a bit of a blush on Heero’s face, “You really care about her don’t you?”

Heero nodded, “I do, yes.”

“Are you going to look her up?” Wufei asked.

“Maybe. I’m not sure yet.” Heero sighed.

“I see.” Wufei said, looking away before looking back at Heero, “Some advice? If you look her up, don’t let her go. Keep the people who you truly care about close to you, for you never know what may happen in the future. And if you didn’t leave off on a good note? Use that chance to mend the fences and patch things up between you two before you can’t and end up regretting it for the rest of your life.”

“Sounds like you have personal experience about it.” Heero stated.

“I do. And I regret it to this day.”

“Your wife?”

“No. Well yes, but not in this particular situation regarding friends.”

“Oh. What was her name?”

“Zi Jing. She was from a different clan. She needed a friend and well, I wasn’t exactly the greatest. I was horrible actually.”

“What made you realize it?”

“I made her cry and her older brother beat me up for it.”

“Oh. Did you get to apologize?”

“No. She moved with her clan and I never found out where. Weiyuan said that I deserved the ass kicking I got.”

“Ouch. Did your little brother like her or something?”

“I think he saw her as an older sister.” Wufei said.

“Makes sense.” Heero commented. Wufei nodded in agreement before a silence fell over them.

“You know...You may have been a horrible friend to her but you were at least close enough to her if Weiyuan saw her as an older sister.” Heero stated, breaking the silence over them.

“I suppose that’s true...Thank you Heero.”

“You’re welcome Wufei.”

Chapter Text

Heero sighed, parking his truck in front of Diamond School of Fine Arts and getting out of it the moment it was turned off. He made quick strides towards the entrance, running a hand through his hair. Towards the end of his shift, he had gotten a call saying that his younger brother as well as a few others had gotten into a fight and that he was to come to the school as soon as he could.

Upon entering the school, he made his way right to the office where he found a small group of five teenage boys sitting to the left, though it was the one in the middle that had his main focus. He had short kind of messy dark brown hair, a prussian blue left eye for there was an ice pack on his right eye, and pale taupe skin with freckles across his face and nose.

'Looks like I got here before the others did.' He thought as he made his way towards the small group, "Hitoshi."

The boy in the middle looked up, "O-Oh, hi N-Nii-san.."

"Hey big bro Ro." A boy on Hitoshi's left greeted. He had short shaggy brown hair, pale blue eyes with a scar under the right eye, and Caucasian skin.

"Hello Ken." Heero greeted before turning his attention back to Hitoshi, "You okay Otouto?"

Hitoshi shook his head no.

"Alright let me see." Heero said. He bit his lip in anger when he saw that Hitoshi's right eye, orange brown in color, was starting to turn into a black eye.

It was only a few minutes after Heero arrived that the others strolled in. They beelined straight to their siblings and looked them over.

"What happened?" Duo asked as he gently grabbed Ken's chin and tilted it up to look for injuries, "Were you being picked on?"

"Duo give him a chance to answer." Quatre interrupted before Duo could continue asking questions. He had Calleigh stand as he inspected the younger male for any injuries and then hugged him.

"Gervasi?" Trowa inquired quietly as he knelt in front of his brother.

"Bohai, did you get in another fight?" Wufei asked tiredly.

"Oh someone was being picked on but it wasn't me." Ken answered. There was slight swelling on his non-scarred cheek, indicating that there would be a bruise later and his hands were a bit roughed up but other than that he didn't have any other injuries.

Calleigh hugged his older brother back. The blond appeared to be free from injuries though the palm of his hands looked slightly swollen.

"I may need to have my shoulder checked at. I got shoved into the lockers at one point and I think a lock digged into it." Gervarsi explained, gently rotating the shoulder in question. It looked like he had managed to avoid any hits to the face but he did have some scratches.

"I was protecting my friend, Dàgē." Bohai replied. He had a couple of scratches and a cut here and there but he was otherwise fine aside from rumpled clothes.

"Where were the teachers at when this happened?" Quatre asked gently as he rubbed his brothers back.

"And where are they at now?" Duo wanted to know, "Aren't we supposed to be meeting with the principal?"

"The nurse didn't look at it?" Trowa asked with a frown, "We'll stop and have Sally look at it before we go home."

Wufei sighed, "We'll talk about this later. Do you have any injuries that I can't see?"

"Classrooms I think? It happened during class exchange so the halls were kind of packed." Calleigh answered.

"Because there are so many of you guys, the meeting is going to be held in one of the conference rooms." Ken explained.

Gervasi shrugged, being careful of his shoulder, "The bullies might be in worse conditions than us and Hitoshi was having a panic attack when everything was over so tending to him to make sure he was okay took higher priority than my shoulder."

Bohai thought for a moment then shook his head, "I don't think so but it most likely wouldn't hurt to be looked over by Miss Sally."

"You had a panic attack?" Heero asked, slight alarm in his voice as he inspected Hitoshi's eye.

"Y-Yeah but I-I'm better now, p-promise." Hitoshi replied, fidgeting with his ice back slightly.

"Head to the conference room. I'll make sure the principal knows we're here." Quatre told them as he released his brother from the hug and ruffled his hair.

"Yeah, let's do that." Duo agreed as he gave his brother a gentle hug before releasing him, "I think all of you should see Sally, it can't hurt to have her give you a checkup."

"I agree with Duo." Trowa told them as he pulled an ice pack out of the bag he had brought in with him. He cracked it to activate it and carefully pressed it to his brothers shoulder, "Hold that there. Let me know if the pain worsens."

Wufei nodded and led the group to the conference room with one arm around Bohai's shoulders.

"Alright." Gervasi said, giving a small hiss when the cold came in contact with his skin but he held the ice pack in place as he and the others followed Wufei to the conference room.

Heero gently rubbed Hitoshi's head, giving him a side hug, "Were you being picked on about your eyes again?"

Hitoshi nodded, the ice pack back on his right eye, "Yeah.."

Ken and Calleigh were both sharing an ice pack for Ken's cheek and Calleigh's hands. The blonde had apparently used a locker door to shield himself from a punch and the resulting force had hurt his hands.

Trowa pulled out more ice packs and handed them out to the ones that needed them. He sat down next to Gervasi and shifted so the kid could lean against him if he wanted, "You're eyes are perfect the way they are." He told Hitoshi.

Duo and Wufei also sat next to their brothers while they waited for Quatre and the principal to arrive.

When Quatre walked in he was followed by the principal and by the bullies and their parents. He went and sat next to his brother as he waited for the principal to start the meeting.

Gervasi took the invitation, pretty much sagging against his older brother as he felt exhaustion start to settle into his frame. Heero was sitting next to Hitoshi as Ken and Calleigh adjusted their ice packs.

True to Gervasi's word, the bullies did look very much worse than he and the others did with one of the boys' hands being wrapped up. Once everyone was seated, the principal started the meeting.

"As I'm sure you all know, I've called you here today because your boys were caught fighting each other." The principal stated.

Trowa gently rubbed Gervasi's back as his brother leaned against him and rolled his eyes one of the parents of the bullies spoke up.

"Those boys are monsters! Look at what they did to my baby!" The woman cried, "I demand that they be expelled!"

"It's true, our brothers were in the fight, but they are not the ones who started it." Wufei spoke calmly, "They were defending their friend who your son was picking on."

Duo and Quatre remained silent for now as they listened and observed the conversation. Gervasi has to bite his lip from making a smart ass remark as another parent spoke up.

"Those heathens ruined my boy's hand! The skin is split and everything." One man exclaimed.

"No sir, your son did that to himself when he went and punched a locker because he was aiming for my face." Calleigh deadpanned. Ken covered his mouth at the very blunt response.

"I also don't appreciate the fact that it was one of your sons who is responsible for the black eye that my brother now has." Heero said, making sure to keep his anger in check. Last thing anyone needed was for the ex-perfect soldier to draw his gun on a bully.

Quatre hid his smirk at Calleigh's remark, "None of our brothers threw the first punch. They were simply helping their friend who was outnumbered."

The first parent scoffed, "My son has a fractured hand! I want these boys punished!"

"You've already taken him to have x rays then?" Trowa questioned, "I must say I'm surprised that you had time to do that and get back before the meeting started."

Duo snorted at Calleigh's response. It was so like Quatre that he couldn't help it, "Look, we've all been here before with the fighting between the boys. It has never been this bad before, we're all lucky none of the boys have any serious injuries. The fighting is becoming more regular between them and we need to find a way to help them resolve it."

The poor principal looked like he was about to blow a blood vessel at the comments of the bullies' parents.

Ken gave out a soft snort, rolling his eyes, "There is no resolving it."

"What Ken means is that the bullies have been seeking us out for no reason. Hitoshi was minding his own business trying to get his stuff when they approached him and started to make fun of the fact that his eyes don't exactly match. The main bully then tried to pick a fight with our friend and we only intervened after Hitoshi got punched in the eye." Calleigh explained. He may not have been born a Winner but he was very clearly flourishing under Quatre's care.

Hitoshi looked down at his lap. The Japanese teen was insecure about having Heterochromia, going as far as to either use contacts or an eye patch to conceal his right eye.

Wufei saw Hitoshi look down and frowned, "Perhaps we should consider moving our siblings to a school where they do not tolerate bullying. It would be a shame to move them, but if this is going to continue happening, I'd rather move my brother someplace I know he'd be safe."

Duo hummed, "Maybe. I know Ken loves it here so it would break his heart to move."

Quatre steepled his fingers on the table in front of him, "Or perhaps, we can nip this in the bud right here, right now. The bullies are suspended, do some community work with disabled kids to learn how to be kind, and, if they have learned their lesson at the end of their suspension, then they can come back. How does that sound?" Quatre asked the principle.

Heero gently wrapped his arm around Hitoshi, giving the younger male a side hug. He honestly may ask his younger brother later about transferring anyways if he isn't happy at the school anymore. Hitoshi leaned against Heero, pretty much melting into the hug.

"That sounds reasonable enough." The principal said.

"WHAT!?" The first parent screeched, "My son is innocent! It was those boys who hurt him!"

"We could always pull up the security footage." Duo informed her, "And we won't even have to wait for the Preventers to arrive seeing as how we're already here." He rubbed Ken's back as he spoke.

"Innocent? Lady, your son was the one to throw the first punch due to his low brain cell count. And I'm pretty sure he's the one who stole my friend's eyepatch." Ken stated.

"Otouto, is it true that your eyepatch is missing?" Heero asked softly. He remembered that the younger had definitely left the truck with it on this morning.

"I took it off and put it in my locker after gym was over so I could shower. When I went back to my locker, it was gone." Hitoshi explained.

Trowa frowned. They all knew how shy Hitoshi was, especially when it came to his eyes, "I'm sure if we go through your son's belongings and locker we will find the missing eyepatch. So that is a count of fighting on school grounds, bullying other students, and thievery. Perhaps this should go on his permanent record."

"That can be arranged." Wufei agreed, "Shall we search his things?"

"You can't do that!" The parent screeched, "You need a warrant!"

"If you want to do it the hard way, lady, we can." Duo said as he placed a hand on Ken's shoulder to calm him, "Or we can do this the easy way. Have you son empty his bag on the table to see if the patch is there. I'd not we can go take a quick look in his locker to see if it's there.”

The principal looked at the head bully, "Young man you will empty your bag out this instant."

"You can't be serious!" The bully said.

"Please note that if it is in there that I will be pressing charges for theft." Heero stated, eyes narrowed.

Ken gently drummed his fingers on his knee, taking a deep breath to calm down. He didn’t appreciate the fact that his friend had been stolen from, especially when the other teen was currently out of his contact lenses.

Duo squeezed Ken' shoulder gently, "You okay?" He whispered.

"We take theft very seriously." Wufei stated, "It might just be one little item now but it could lead to the theft of bigger and bigger items." He crossed his arms as he stared at the bully and his banshee of a mom.

Ken shook his head, "Cal and I got robbed a few times when we were on the street. Pisses me off now when my friends get robbed." He whispered back.

"I would suggest having all of the bullies empty their bags incase the one in charge passed the eye patch to one of his lackeys to hide." Bohai suggested. The parents started to protest at this.

"Excellent idea." Wufei agreed, "Well, we're waiting."

Duo ran his fingers through Ken's hair, "When we get home, I think it's time I taught you how to deal with bullies without getting in trouble." And by that he meant pranks. With great reluctance, the bullies emptied their bags on the table, just about crowding it.

Ken leaned into Duo's hand some, "I thought you said no more pranks after I booby trapped the peanut butter?" In his defense, it had been a jar of Reese's peanut butter.

Duo kept his eyes on what was being emptied onto the table, "That is different, you don't mess with food. Almost everything else is fair game."

Wufei stood and plucked the eye patch from the pile of items and held it up for everyone to see.

"Noted." Ken murmured, trying to figure out which bag the stolen eye patch had came from.

"I believe we'll be seeing one of you in court." Heero said, turning his gaze towards the bullies. If he was lucky, maybe they would crack under his stare.

Wufei passed the eye patch over to Hitoshi, "This was witnessed in front of everyone in the room. You will be informed of the court date. Now if you'll excuse us, we're going to have our siblings checked over by a doctor. All injuries will be documented."

Hitoshi slipped his eye patch back on, using it to hold his ice pack in place.

Heero looked at Hitoshi and the others, "Do you boys have everything or do you need to get something from your locker before we go?"

Trowa gently rubbed Gervasi's back, "Do you feel up to walking?" He asked, fully prepared to carry his sibling if he was too tired.

Duo and Quatre stood, each wrapped an arm around their brothers.

"I think so. I do need to get my English homework from my locker though." Gervasi said.

"And I still need to collect my math homework." Calleigh mentioned, slipping his bag onto his back.

Trowa nodded and helped his brother stand, "Alright. Lead the way to your lockers and gather what you need. We'll be right behind you."

"Yes, gather your things. Then we'll all go see Sally." Quatre said as he sent a text to Sally.

Gervasi adjusted the ice pack, putting his book bag on his non injured shoulder.

"Okay." Calleigh said. Ken, Hitoshi, and Bohai all gathered their bags. The former pilots followed their brothers out of the room and didn't pause when the banshee mom started to screech at them.

"For the love of god, her voice is annoying." Hitoshi muttered, coming out of his shell slightly once it was just them and their brothers.

Duo snickered, "Banshee."

"Sally says to go straight to her office when we arrive." Quatre informed the group.

"That's an insult to banshees." Hitoshi stated.

"Sally is aware that she's only checking over the boys right?" Heero asked.

"Yes." Quatre told him, "And she will be documenting every single injury they have."

"Good." Trowa said as they reached the lockers, "Alright boys get your things."

"Okay good." Heero said. He already avoided Sally trying to scan his brain once today. He didn't want to push his luck. The boys went to their respective lockers, grabbing their homework and whatever else they needed.

"Got everything?" Trowa asked, "Should probably grab a copy of the security footage while we're here too. Make sure we have a copy in case the original goes missing."

The boys double checked to see if they had everything before nodding that yes they did.

"Wouldn't be a bad idea." Heero said.

"I'll grab it." Duo told them as he headed to the office, "Ken, you can either wait for me or go ahead with the others bud."

"You're welcome to ride with us." Quatre told him knowing how close the two boys were.

"I'll ride with Calleigh if that's okay. We're suppose to be working on an English project anyways." Ken said.

"I can't tell if it's an actual project or if the teacher just wants us to further prove her point about Shakespeare being a hack." Calleigh mumbled.

Duo chuckled, "That's fine. I'll meet you there soon. Listen to Quatre." He said as he entered the office.

"Alright let's get going. Duo will be right behind us." Wufei said as he started herding the group towards the doors.

The group made their way out of the school, each teenager following their respective sibling to their car with the exception of Ken going with Calleigh and Quatre. Duo followed not long after having made several copies of the footage.

He pulled up behind the others not long after they arrived. The group was already inside, with Hitoshi being looked over first. Ken and Calleigh were trying to figure out their project.

Duo slipped into the room and leaned against the wall next to the door, "How's it looking?"

"This one here is going to have a black eye for about a week or two." Sally answered, gently prodding the skin around Hitoshi's eye.

"That's not too bad." Trowa said as he wrote it down.

Hitoshi whimpered softly when Sally prodded a tender spot.

Sally frowned some, "He won't be able to use his contacts for a bit and might have to switch to a padded eye patch for the time being."

"The contacts shouldn't be an issue during that time frame as well. Hitoshi ran out of them recently." Heero said, gently rubbing Hitoshi's head.

"Don't worry bud. You'll be right as rain soon enough." Duo told Hitoshi.

"Do you mean physically or mentally?" Hitoshi questioned.

"Both." Duo told him, "We've got you, okay? I'm gonna be teaching Ken somethings after we get home, all of you are welcome to join us."

"The fact that he had to specify reminds me that I still need to find you a therapist." Heero stated. Hitoshi gently shrugged as Sally finished up with his eye.

"Which one do you want to see next?" Trowa asked as he passed the medical form over to Heero to sign.

"I can look at Gervasi next. You said he got pushed into the lockers right?" Sally asked. Heero took a pen out of his pocket and signed the form.

"Yeah." Trowa said as Gervasi stood and walked over to switch with Hitoshi. He filled out the form with Gervasi's information as Sally started her exam.

Sally carefully prodded Gervasi's shoulder, "Looks like a lock dug into your shoulder kind of deep there."

Trowa observed them even as he wrote everything on the form, "Is there any damage to the muscles?" He asked.

"I'm not sure yet. If there is then it might not be too deep." Sally said.

Gervasi hissed as Sally pressed on a bad spot, "Son of a whore!"

"Well that one's new." Ken said, looking up from his project.

"Does he need any scans?" Trow asked Sally concerned.

"He might have to be on the safe side. Judging from his reaction that seemed to be a bad spot." Sally explained.

Trowa nodded, "We can do that while you look at the others." He passed the other forms to Wufei to fill out before signing the one for Gervasi.

"Alright." Sally said. Gervasi gently rubbed his bad shoulder as he got up to let one of the others switch with him.

Trowa led Gervasi out of the room while Quatre prodded Calleigh up to get looked at. Calleigh got up and took the spot that Gervasi was in, letting Sally look at his hands. Wufei took over filling out the forms when Trowa left and quickly copied down what was happening.

"He was using a locker door to shield himself from a punch." Quatre told Sally.

"Smart boy." Sally said, inspecting Calleigh's hands, "They'll be a bit sore from where the force of the punch went into the door but other than that, he'll be okay."

Quatre nodded and signed the form when Wufei handed it over, "Okay which one of you wants to go next?" He asked the remaining two.

"Ken took a punch to the face so he should go next." Bohai said, not even looking up from his math homework.

Duo watched as Ken sighed and stood to switch places, "Give him a once over when you're done? Wanna make sure he doesn't have any other injuries that might be hidden."

"Of course." Sally said, starting with the bruise on Ken's cheek.

Duo watched as Wufei filled out the form, "How's your face feeling bud?"

"A bit sore." Ken answered, "Though not as bad as the cut that had given my scar."

Duo nodded. They all had their scars and he hated that Ken and Calleigh had been out there on their own. He knew what it was like and did his best to help any kid he found on the streets.

"How did you get the scar anyways?" Sally asked.

"He got into a knife fight and won. With a yo yo." Calleigh said.

"Kids find ways to survive." Duo told her, "They're better at adapting to their surroundings than most adults."

"Where...where did you get the yo yo from?" Sally asked, finishing up with the bruise on Ken's cheek.

"You don't wanna know." Ken stated.

Duo chuckled already knowing the story, "What's the diagnosis doc?"

"He'll have a bruise for a while but there's no tissue or muscle damage. He'll need an ice pack for the rest of the day to make sure it doesn't swell anymore." Sally stated.

Duo nodded, "Any other injuries that might be hiding?"

Sally shook her head, "Nope. Bruised cheek is the only thing he has."

Duo nodded and Ken switched places with Bohai. Duo took the form from Wufei and signed it.

Sally started to look over Bohai, "So Heero, any chance I can convince you to let me scan your brain while you're here?"

"No and I don't appreciate that you hijacked my doctor's appointment." Heero stated.

"Why does Nii-san need his brain scanned?" Hitoshi asked.

Duo snickered, "Because he's Heero."

"So I can figure out exactly how bad my injury is. I already spaced out this morning in my office." Heero said.

"Don't worry." Duo told Hitoshi, "Your brother is fine... mostly."

Hitoshi thought for a few minutes, "Are you talking about the time you jumped out the window with a parachute or the time you were stupid enough to self destruct?"

"Who told you about the parachute thing?" Heero asked instead.

Duo eyed Ken who had heard them talking about both incidents before. Ken had made himself look like the poster boy of innocence.

"Confidential source." Hitoshi answered.

Duo snorted, "Either way, he knows now. You might as well tell him the full story."

"How is Bohai?" Wufei interrupted them.

"He has a few cuts that'll need to be cleaned to make sure they don't get infected but aside from that and the scratches, he'll be fine." Sally explained.

Wufei nodded and signed the paper, "Good. We can do that while we wait for Trowa and Gervasi to finish their scans."

"Dude how the hell did you even get the cuts?" Ken asked.

"How the hell should I know? My main concern was keeping Hitoshi from getting hit again." Bohai stated.

"Could be from any rings on their hands or books that got thrown around." Duo said as Wufei cleaned the cuts.

"They weren't wearing any rings." Ken said. Bohai had hissed some when the disinfectant came in contact with his cuts but he remained still.

Duo hummed thoughtfully and ruffled Ken's hair, "We'll figure that out later."

"Okay." Ken said.

Calleigh thought of something and looked at Quatre, "Don't Quin, Troy, and Weiyuan still need to be picked up from school?"

"Rashid is picking them up." Quatre told him, "They'll meet us at the house."

"Whose house?" Bohai asked.

"Are we gonna have to worry about Troy trying to hunt the bullies down with knives?" Calleigh questioned. Troy happened to be very protective of his brothers whenever Trowa or Gervasi got hurt.

"My house." Quatre said, "We adults are going to look over the security footage and talk to a lawyer before we split up for the night."

"Trowa will make sure he doesn't, don't worry." Duo told Calleigh.

"Well, he did almost make it past holding that one time Trowa got hurt." Hitoshi said.

"Wait that was Troy?" Heero asked.

Duo sighed, "We'll all keep a close eye on him, don't worry." Duo told him, "Why don't we go see if they're done yet?"

"Okay." Hitoshi said. The boys put their homework back into their respective bags with Calleigh grabbing Gervasi's bag for him. Duo ruffled Ken's hair again and led the way out of Sally's office to where Trowa and Gervasi were. Ken smoothed his hair out slightly as the group went to check on Gervasi.

Trowa and Gervasi were just leaving when they walked up, "He's fine. Just a bruise."

"A very painful bruise." Gervasi said. Calleigh handed Gervasi's bag to Trowa.

Trowa shouldered the bag, "It will heal. We've got bruise cream that should help. Are we all ready to go?"

The boys nodded.

"Sally tried to convince Nii-san to let her scan his brain." Hitoshi said.

Trowa smirked, "Are you still avoiding her?" Trowa teased Heero as the group headed for the exit.

"The woman hijacked my doctor's appointment. There are no boundaries." Heero stated.

Trowa chuckled, "Just let her do a scan. It takes all of five seconds."

"Last I checked, Sally isn't a brain specialist." Heero commented.

"So it is from the time you blew yourself up." Hitoshi said.

"Neither are you." Trowa told him as they exited the building.

"I know I'm not, which is why the appointment that got hijacked was with one." Heero replied.

Duo snickered, "Just tell her you want an actual brain doctor to look you over."

"Heero needs a brain doctor?" Ken asked.

"Is he okay?" Calleigh questioned.

"He's fine." Quatre assured them, "It's just to check on an old injury." He gave Heero and Duo a stern look, "Let's get going. Rashid already has the boys at the house."

"That is more concerning than it is comforting." Calleigh muttered.

"Heero is fine. If he wasn't do you think we'd let him drive or go on missions?" Wufei asked them.

Bohai gave his brother a flat look, "I had to keep you from barging into his house at three a.m. because you were worried from where he spaced out on you and Duo at the tea shop and left without giving you an explanation."

"I remember Quatre mentioning to Trowa that Heero spaced out on him on their way to lunch on a Tuesday." Calleigh added.

The former pilots exchanged a look, "We'll talk about this later when we're not standing in the middle of a parking lot." Quatre told them.

"Alright." They said. They could wait. Or have Hitoshi do some hacking again. The former pilots herded their brothers to the cars. Though worried about Heero, they knew he would be fine while Hitoshi was in the vehicle as Heero would never do anything to endanger his brother.

Chapter Text

"So what are we looking at with the security footage?" Heero asked once the pilots were settled at Quatre's place. They had decided to talk in the kitchen about the issue while the boys were in the living room to work on their homework.

"Anything we can find about the fight." Duo told him, "Who threw the first punch, any teachers in the area, how long it took for the fight to be broken up, etc."

"From my understanding, there are supposed to be teachers patrolling the halls while the kids are changing classes." Trowa spoke up.

"There are unless it's close to the end of the day for that's when everyone is trying to leave to go home." Heero explained.

Trowa hummed thoughtfully, "That seems unsafe to me. You would think that more teachers or faculty members would be on patrol."

"That is something we can look into further." Quatre said, "For now we should focus on the fight and how we can help prevent it from happening again."

"Honestly I wouldn't be too surprised if the school had to make budget cuts or something." Heero stated. He looked up when he saw a flash of blond, brown, and black heads towards the fridge.

"Ignore the 12 year olds, we're just getting something to drink." Quin said, opening the fridge door.

"No, don't ignore the 12 year olds. I need to know who to stab." Troy voiced up.

"No stabbing anyone." Trowa stated amused, "Am I going to need to start patting you down for knives before you leave the house everyday?"

Quatre chuckled, "Don't ruin your appetites. Dinner will be soon."

"You don't pat Cathy down for knives before she leaves." Troy pointed out.

"We won't." Quin promised, handing Troy and Weiyuan a juice pouch before getting one himself.

"Cathy is a grown adult and would skin me alive if I tried to pat her down." Trowa returned, "Well? Am I going to need to pat you down?"

"You'll have to catch me first." Troy challenged, quickly leaving the room with his juice pouch.

Trowa snorted, "He seems to have forgotten that I'm faster."

Duo grinned, "Well Tro seems you're gonna have your hands full."

Trowa shot him a droll look.

"Duo behave." Heero said. Quin and Weiyuan took their leave so they could start on their homework.

"I am behaving." Duo told him, "But it's true. Tro is gonna have his hands full with Troy. I swear that kid is more knife happy than Cathy is."

"Well given the number of times he left Troy and Gervasi in Cathy's care during the war, it was bound to happen with one of them sooner or later." Heero commented.

"Unfortunately." Trowa muttered under his breath, "Back to the topic on hand, how do we end the bullying the boys face and prevent any future fights?"

Heero sighed, "Well aside from legal options, there's only two options. We could get restraining orders taken out on the bullies or..."

"Or we switch schools." Duo finished for him, "Yeah... really trying to avoid that." He sighed.

"I feel as if the boys should have a say in this." Quatre informed the group, "They're the ones getting in fights and being bullied. They can offer insight as to what is happening and on whether or not they feel safe staying at the school."

"I've been thinking about looking into different schools for Hitoshi." Heero confessed, "Only reason I haven't yet because he usually assures me that he's fine but after what happened today and given what goes on in his head.."

Quatre nodded, "We should talk to the boys about new schools though I'd still like to press charges against the bullies."

"Oh no, I'm gonna be dragging those Rokudenashis through court if it's the last thing I do." Heero replied.

"I'm pretty sure that was a swear!" Quin called from the living room.

"He has no way of proving that." Heero commented.

Duo snorted, "Calm down 'Ro. We're gonna drag them to court. The only question here right now is do we keep them in the same school or transfer them?"

Heero squashed down the urge to flip Duo off, "Quatre is right about talking to the boys about if they want to change schools or not but it also wouldn't hurt to start looking into some different ones so they have something to choose from if they decide they want to. My only worry is finding time to do so." He explained. He did a subtle glance to his bag, as if suddenly feeling the weight of the two books in it despite the fact that his bag was on the ground next to his feet.

Wufei squeezed his shoulder, "We could always home school until we find a suitable school or have the boys do the research."

Heero sighed, the ghost scent of Raspberries and mints quickly leaving his mind just as fast as it entered, "That is true. Given our work schedules though, it would seem more likely for the boys to do the research."

Quatre nodded, "The research will be good for them and it will give them something to focus on other than the trial."

"And the fact that I still need to find Hitoshi a therapist for his nightmares." Heero added.

"See if Sally can recommend someone." Trowa told him, "You don't have to do everything by yourself, use the resources available to you."

"I meant to ask Sally after lunch but someone threatened to take my moped out joyriding." Heero commented, giving Duo the side eye.

Duo grinned back innocently.

Wufei snorted, "I'm surprised Ken hasn't picked up your habits Maxwell."

"Ken doesn't even have a driver's license." Heero deadpanned.

"Neither did you when we were their age." Duo pointed out, "It didn't stop any of us from stealing cars or in one case an ambulance."

"For us it was necessary. For them, not so much." Heero countered.

Hitoshi shyly poked his head into the room, his eye patch currently off until a better one was found, "Um, I have a question.."

"You can come in." Quatre smiled kindly at him, "What's your question?"

Hitoshi moved to where he was standing in the doorway, "It might seem silly but has time machines been invented yet?"

"Unfortunately not." Duo said softly, his mind flickered back the Maxwell Church for a brief second before focusing back on the present, "Why do you ask?"

"Um, no reason. I'm going back to homework now." Hitoshi said, starting to back away.

Heero caught onto the reason, "It doesn't matter how much you boys don't like algebra, you can't go back in time and take out whoever invented it."

"Ahh." Duo hummed, "Do you need help with it?"

"Yes. Ken is considering setting his on fire." Hitoshi replied.

"Alright. Come on." Duo said as he stood and headed into the room the kids where in, "Let's go keep the fire bug from getting in trouble."

Hitoshi followed after him. Calleigh was trying to convince Ken not to burn the homework.

"Ken what'd I say about starting fires?" Duo asked as he walked up to the group.

"Not to do it unless absolutely necessary." Ken answered.

"And is it absolutely necessary in this case?" Duo questioned amused.

Ken nodded, "Yes, because this is mental abuse to humans and we must be liberated from it."

Duo snorted, "While I agree algebra is horrible, you can't burn it, especially not in Quatre's living room. Now, what problems are you having trouble with?"

Ken pouted, "I was gonna burn it in the fireplace." He muttered before showing what he was stuck on

Duo chuckled and sat down next to him as he began to break down the problem to help them understand it better. The boys wrote down notes for later in case they got stuck on a different one.

"Understand it better now?" Duo asked them as he looked over the other problems the group had to do.

"Yes." Ken said as the others nodded.

"Alright. Which ones." Duo asked them.

Some of them pointed to the slightly less complex problems with the others pointed to some of the more complex ones.

Duo helped them break each problem down until they could all figure out how to do them and then watched them work for a minute before asking, "Does your teacher show you how to do these or let you ask questions if you get confused or stuck on a problem?"

"Usually yeah but the right side of our classroom has been really disruptive lately where the teacher has had to stop what he's teaching in order to get them in line." Hitoshi explained.

Duo frowned and then sighed, "We were gonna ask all of you this later, but... do any of you want to stay at your current school with everything that is going on?"

This made the five stop working, looking at Duo and then each other.

"You don't have to answer now." Duo told them, "But think about it and let us know what you want to do."

"Okay." They said.

"Alright, any other homework trouble?" Duo asked them. They thought for a minute before shaking their heads no.

"Alright. Let us know if you have any questions." Duo told them as he stood and rejoined the other adults.

They went back to his homework. Heero had taken out his sketchbook, going back to working on the sketch he had started when he had gotten the call to pick up Hitoshi.

Quatre was pulling out things to cook for dinner, "Are any of you staying for dinner?" He asked the group.

"Not tonight." Wufei replied, "We should be leaving soon, but perhaps this weekend if things aren't busy."

"Same." Duo replied.

"I'll have to check with Hitoshi. Poor guy might just want to eat dinner in his pjs in the living room after the day he's had." Heero answered.

Quatre nodded, "I understand. And don't worry, you know the invitation to join us always stands."

"I know." Heero said, "If not today then tomorrow for sure."

Quatre smiled at him as Trowa stood and stretched, "We'll stay if you don't mind. I'm sure the boys will enjoy the extra time together before we head home."

Heero set down his sketchbook, "I'll ask Hitoshi if he feels up to it. Maybe he might feel up to spending some more time with Gervasi and Calleigh before we head home."

Quatre nodded as Trowa went to check on Gervasi and Troy.

"We'll be heading out. Call if anything pops up." Duo told Quatre before going to collect Ken.

"We're going too." Wufei said as he stood, "Enjoy the rest of the evening."

"Drive safe guys." Quatre called after them.

Heero stood up, going to go ask Hitoshi if he was up for staying for dinner. Duo and Wufei gathered their siblings and managed to get them out the door with little fuss. It had been a long day and they were all tired.

Heero had asked Hitoshi if he wanted to stay for dinner or if he wanted to go home. Hitoshi has picked on staying for dinner so he could spend some extra time with his friends. Trowa had wandered back to the kitchen to help Quatre prepare dinner while the boys hung out and finished whatever homework they had.

Heero rubbed Hitoshi's head then went to see if Trowa and Quatre needed any help. They were mostly done. The food was cooking on the stove and Trowa was chopping some vegetables to add. All that was left to do was set the table. Heero handled setting the table, humming a random tune to himself as he did so.

When everything was done Quatre called, "Boys, dinner!"

The boys made their way into the kitchen, each taking a seat at the table. Quatre and Trowa moved the food to the table and then sat down. Heero took a shit next to Hitoshi, who was seated next to Calleigh.

"Did you boys get your homework done?" Quatre asked as he began serving the food.

"Yes and none of it got set on fire." Calleigh answered.

Quatre laughed, "Good. Did Duo mention what we have been considering?"

Calleigh nodded, "He did, yes."

"What do you think?" Trowa asked.

The three looked between each other. " probably wouldn't hurt to be in a better school environment but Ken and I are still playing a bit of catch up from our time on the streets." Calleigh said.

"And would the new school be willing to accept five new students about halfway into the school year?" Gervasi asked.

"That is why we wanted to know what you think." Quatre said softly, "This decision is up to all of you. And children transfer schools halfway through the year all the time."

"And if you don't want to attend an actual school we can always homeschool you." Trowa informed them.

"You guys are busy with work though. We couldn't do that to you." Gervasi stated.

"Une can suck it. You guys are first priority." Heero commented.

Trowa smirked, "Heero is right. We would drop everything for you. You guys are the most important people in our lives."

"They're right." Quatre said, "And I'm sure if you guys didn't want us to teach you then we could find tutors to teach you."

"I thought you didn't like tutors?" Quin asked. The 12 year old vaguely remembers an old discussion about it between a younger version of his older brother and their father.

"I'm not a fan but if that's what you want then that's what we'll do." Quatre told him, "We're following your lead on this. If you tell us you want to stay at your current school then that's what we'll do. If you say you want to go to a new school then that's what we'll do."

"...I wouldn't mind being somewhere where I won't get picked on for either my eyepatch or my mismatched eyes constantly.." Hitoshi confessed, pushing his food around a bit.

"Did you have any place in mind?" Trowa asked.

Hitoshi shook his head, "I haven't gotten a chance to really try to look due to trying to get homework done since classes have been really noisy lately."

"Since this is your choice, we think you guys should research different schools that you like and we'll go from there." Trowa told them, "And this is only if you guys want to, okay?"

"Okay." They said in agreement.

"Eat your food." Quatre told the boys, "After your done I think it's time to get ready for bed."

There was a chorus of groans at the mention of bed time but it wasn't fought on as they turned to eating. Trowa watched amused as the boys resumed eating and turned back to his own food. Heero bit back a smile as he ate, his sketchbook tucked away safely on his lap since he didn't have enough time to put it back into his bag.

They were done eating all too soon, "Alright, while I help Quatre with the dishes you guys go pack your things and then we'll head home." Trowa said.

"Alright." The group of five said, getting up from the table. They started to head back into the living room to get their stuff before Calleigh remembered something. "Oh yeah, you said that we were going to talk about why Heero needs to see a brain specialist." He reminded.

Trowa and Quatre glanced at Heero, "That is up to Heero." Quatre told them, "It's his story to tell, not ours."

Heero sighed, "Well they were bound to find out sooner or later." He said, gesturing for the boys to sit back down. While they sat Trowa and Quatre gathered the dishes to wash and packed away any remaining food.

"Three of you already know this but back during the war, I had self destructed with my gundam. If it wasn't for Trowa, I probably wouldn't be here right now." Heero told them.

Trowa and Quatre listened as they continued cleaning. They knew the story but didn't want to interrupt.

"Well about a week ago I started to realize that I've been spacing out while out in public." Heero started, momentarily remember the bakery with Quatre, the circus with Trowa, and the tea shop with Duo and Wufei, "Well after doing some research, I came to the conclusion that as a result of my self destruct attempt I ended up with a type of brain damage. It’s affecting my memories, especially the ones of before the war. I have a hard time remembering things about the people who were close to me before I became a pilot. It’s like the memories are there, I just can’t really remember them right off the bat. I’ve noticed that certain smells trigger those memories back to me and-" He explained, only to be cut off with an 'oof' from Hitoshi practically throwing himself at the older and hugging him tight.

Trowa and Quatre watched the sight, "Let's give them a few minutes alone with each other." Trowa said quietly as he gathered up his brothers.

Calleigh picked up Quin, carrying him back into the living room. Heero hugged Hitoshi in return, rubbing the younger's back as he felt him start to shake slightly.

"We're going to head home." Trowa told Quatre, "It's getting late. We'll see you guys later."

Quatre nodded, "Alright, drive safe. And it's time you you two to get ready for bed."

"I think the only time he doesn't drive safe is when he has the motorcycle." Gervasi said.

"Is there school tomorrow?" Quin asked instead, not wanting to acknowledge bedtime just yet.

"Do you guys feel like braving school tomorrow?" Quatre asked him.

"Well I'm pretty sure that Quin still has to go since he's 12 but a break from tomorrow wouldn't hurt." Calleigh said. Gervasi nodded in agreement.

"Alright. Go change for bed and then you can have a mug of hot chocolate. How's that sound?" Quatre asked.

"Can it have marshmallows in it?" Calleigh asked. Exhaustion was starting to settle into his system.

"Of course." Quatre smiled, "Tell your friends goodnight and then go change. I'll get the hot chocolate started."

"Alright." Calleigh said. He and Quin bid their friends good night before heading upstairs to change for bed.

"We'll see you later." Trowa said as he guided the boys out to the car.

"Night!" Quatre called after them before going to start the hot chocolate.

Heero and Hitoshi had separated when Quatre came back into the kitchen with Hitoshi wiping at his eyes with a tissue.

"Would you two like some hot chocolate?" Quatre asked softly.

"I'm good but I think Hitoshi would like one to go. He's starting to get tired and I still have online work to finish." Heero answered.

"Of course." Quatre agreed as he pulled out a travel mug with the mugs for the boys, "It'll be ready in just a minute."

"Thank you." Hitoshi said, slipping on his eyepatch. Calleigh had found Hitoshi's favorite one in his room before they had started their homework.

It was pale apple green in color with soft padding on the inside and an embroidered patch of wing zero's head on the outside.

"It's no problem dear." Quatre told him as he poured the hot drink into the travel mug, "Here we go. One hot chocolate to go."

Heero smiled as he gathered his and Hitoshi's bag, making sure he had everything.

"Call me if you need anything." Quatre told him, "I mean it 'Ro. Anything and you call me."

"I know you mean it if you're using one of Duo's nicknames for me." Heero replied.

Quatre grinned at him, "Hitoshi, the boys are probably on their way back downstairs by now. Why don't you go tell them bye before you leave?"

"Okay." Hitoshi said, accepting the travel mug and heading into the living room to tell Calleigh and Quin bye.

"Trowa and I are keeping the older ones out of school tomorrow so they can have a day of peace." Quatre told Heero, "I'll probably keep Quin home too so no one bothers him."

Heero nodded at that, "I might keep Hitoshi home tomorrow depending on how he feels. Gervasi said that Hitoshi had a panic attack today so he's probably going to feel like crap in the morning."

Quatre nodded, "Do what you think is right." He said as he poured the rest of the hot chocolate into the mugs for the boys.

"Hopefully he won't feel too bad in the morning. I don't want to leave him on his own while I'm at work." Heero told him.

"You can always bring him here." Quatre told him, "I'm going to work from my home office tomorrow."

"Thank you. I'll let you know how he's doing in the morning to see if I need to bring him over or not." Heero said.

Quatre nodded, "Of course. We should probably go see what they've gotten into."

"Probably time machine schematics. I think I used to do the same thing with Nita when we were kids." Heero stated.

"Have you found her yet?" Quatre asked as they started to make their way out of the kitchen.

Heero shook his head, "I just did her sketch today when Wufei found me in the garden. I can't remember her eyes or her whole name, only that Nita was a part of it and that was what I called her as a nickname."

Quatre hummed, "It will come to you, give it time." He squeezed Heero's shoulder, "Boys? Where'd you wander off to?"

"We're in the living room." Calleigh answered. The boys were seated at the table in the living room, blueprint paper laid out on it.

"What are you up to?" Quatre asked, "Still trying to build a time machine?"

"Nope. A ray gun that can restore memories." Hitoshi replied.

"I see. Well there is hot chocolate on the counter that might be cold soon if two certain boys don't go drink it." Quatre pointed out.

Calleigh and Quin got up, going to get their hot chocolates from the kitchen.

Quatre chuckled, "I thought that would get them moving."

"Only Quatre Winner could use hot chocolate as a weapon." Heero said amused.

Quatre smirked at him, "Shall I use it on you too?"

"I declined remember? Also it was bad enough that you had went back and bought me that cobbler the last time we went out to eat." Heero commented.

Quatre grinned at him, "Get Hitoshi home. He looks likes he gonna fall asleep on the couch."

"Comfy." Hitoshi yawned from the couch.

"Okay Otouto, up we go." Heero stated, helping the younger off the couch.

Quatre laughed softly as Heero helped Hitoshi up and walked over to hold the door open for them, "Drive safe and get a good night's sleep."

"We will. Though I'm most likely not going to sleep until my course work for the night is done." Heero said, helping Hitoshi over to the door.

"Of course. I've got a few more things to take care of as well." Quatre said, "Goodnight Hitoshi."

"Goodnight Quatre." Hitoshi yawned, leaning against Heero.

"Goodnight Heero." Quatre smiled at his friend as the two left.

Heero ushered Hitoshi into the truck, driving them both home.

“The blank forms the relatively cool, brittle plates of plate tectonics. The answer is b, Lithosphere.” Heero muttered to himself, staring at his computer screen.

After he and Hitoshi had gotten home and Hitoshi into bed, Heero pulled out his laptop to work on his homework. After both the war and the Mariemaia incident, he had decided to do online schooling while he was working with the preventers. At the current moment he was working on finishing up his Geology homework.

“A blank is a well-tested and widely accepted view that best explains- oh sweet lord, I need a break.” He groaned, getting up from his spot and stretching, hear a few pops from his spine.

He made his way into the kitchen, grabbing a glass from the cabinet and filling it up with water. He started to take a sip from the class until he heard a scream from Hitoshi’s room, making him drop his glass onto the floor.

Being mindful of the new broken glass, he quickly raced up the stairs and made his way into Hitoshi’s room. Hitoshi was thrashing around on his bed, screaming as he suffered from a nightmare.

“Otouto, wake up!” Heero exclaimed, making his way over to the bed. He pulled his younger brother to himself and held him so the younger wouldn’t accidentally hurt himself, rocking him gently as he said his name.

He kept this up until Hitoshi stopped thrashing and felt his head move. Heero looked down to find Hitoshi looking up at him, the 15 yr old looking lost and confused.

“Nii-san?” Hitoshi asked softly.

“I’m right here Hitoshi.” Heero said, gently rubbing Hitoshi’s back.

“Are you real?”

“Yes otouto, I’m real.”

“Am I real?”

“Yes you’re very much real.”

“Is this real?”

Heero gave him a small smile, “Yes this is real. You’re not in the pod in another simulation.” He assured him.

Hitoshi slumped against Heero at that, listening to the older’s heart beat, “It was really bad this time..”

“Do you want to talk about it?” Heero asked gently.

Hitoshi shook his head, “No..”

“That’s fine, just figured I’d ask.” Heero told him, gently rubbing his head, “Want to stay with me in my room for the rest of the night?”

“Yes please.” Hitoshi said.

Heero chuckled fondly, “Alright, go get settled in my room then. I need to save where I’m at on my homework and sweep up the broken glass. I’ll be there in a bit.”

“Okay.” Hitoshi said. Heero released Hitoshi from his hold and got up so the younger could get up and move into his bedroom. Heero left Hitoshi’s room, heading back to the kitchen and grabbing what he needed to clean up the mess of glass and water.

Once he finished cleaning it up and putting it in the trash, he grabbed a water bottle from the fridge, saved where he was on his homework, and made his way to his bedroom. Hitoshi had made himself at home in Heero’s room, already halfway asleep again. Heero chuckled softly as he joined Hitoshi on the bed.

“Do you want to stay home from school tomorrow if you’re not feeling well in the morning?” He asked.

“Don’t you have work tomorrow?” Hitoshi yawned.

“I do but Quatre is going to be working out of his home office tomorrow and he’s going to be keeping both Calleigh and Quin home tomorrow and he said that I could take you over there if I didn’t want to leave you on your own depending on how you’re feeling in the morning.” Heero explained.

Hitoshi thought for a moment, “Okay...but only if I’m not feeling too well in the morning.”

Heero nodded at that, “Alright, sounds good to me. Goodnight Otouto.”

“Night Nii-san..” Hitoshi mumbled, sleep already reclaiming the boy. Heero chuckled, closing his eyes and going to sleep himself a bit later.

Chapter Text

Heero found himself tucked away in his office the following week, working away on some paperwork. Hitoshi was hiding in a corner reading a book, having tagged along with his brother due to it being ‘bring your child to work’ day. Things were peaceful between the two and Heero was hoping it would stay like that. Unfortunately, everything changed when the Duonation attacked.

“Surprise delivery!” Duo announced, barging into Heero’s office.

Heero groaned, “Do what do you want?”

“You got a visitor downstairs.” Duo told him.

“Is it important?” Heero asked.

“They said it was.” Duo stated. Heero sighed and saved where he was on his work and got up, leaving his office. Once Heero was gone, Duo got to work and looked for Heero’s sketchbook. When he found it, he quickly stuck it into his jacket and was about to leave until-

“What are you doing with Nii-san’s sketchbook?”

Oh right, he forgot about Hitoshi there for a moment. Duo turned to look at the younger male, who was looking up from his book, “Don’t say a word to your brother.”

“What’s in it for me if I don’t say anything to him?” Hitoshi asked.

“I’ll give you your own mini wing.” Duo stated.

Hitoshi looked at him, "Do you have the resources to build a mini wing?"

"Yes, yes I do." Duo grinned at him.

Hitoshi thought for a moment, "Throw in why you're taking the sketchbook and you have yourself a deal."

"Just helping your brother out without his knowledge." Duo told him.

"Will this cause him harm or distress in anyway, shape or form?" Hitoshi asked.

Duo hummed thoughtfully, "Possibly some emotional and or mental distress if he finds out. I want to help 'Ro find his friend."

"If he cries then I have full right to kick you in the shins." Hitoshi threatened.

"If he cries you can punch me in the gut." Duo promised.

"You may regret that promise later.." Hitoshi mumbled.

Duo eyed him, "You don't share his super strength do you?"

"That's the thing, we don't know. J's notes involving what all went into my DNA is still missing." Hitoshi stated.

"Interesting." Duo muttered, "Anyway, we got a deal?" He asked holding out his hand.

"Deal." Hitoshi said, shaking his hand, "You might want to hurry. It shouldn't take Nii-san too long to be back."

Duo grinned at him, "Right. See ya later Toshi!" Duo called over his shoulder as he hurried out of the room.

Hitoshi shook his head, turning back to his book. True to his word, Heero was back a couple of minutes later, muttering about kicking Duo as went to go sit back down only to realize that his sketchbook was missing.

"Otouto, have you touched my sketchbook?" He asked.

"No Nii-san, I haven't." Hitoshi answered.

"Then where is- oh damn it Maxwell." Heero groaned, realizing that Duo was behind it. He sighed, going to go hunt down the other pilot.

By the time Heero found him, Duo had already scanned the sketch into a facial recognition system and it had begun the process of finding Heero's friend.

"Damn it Maxwell give me back my sketchbook." Heero said, walking over to the other pilot. Duo handed it over without a word, though he didn't move from his spot in front of the machine.

Heero tucked his sketchbook safely away into his jacket, "What were you doing with it?"

"I scanned the sketch of your friend into the facial recognition system." Duo answered honestly.

" did what now?" Heero asked, blinking slightly.

"I scanned the sketch of your friend into the facial recognition system." Duo repeated.

"Why?" Heero questioned.

"Because he and the others think that you are being stubborn." Ken said as he walked by, on the hunt to get himself some more jelly babies.

Duo nodded, "We just want to help."

Heero pinched the bridge of his nose, "You know Une's going to have your head if she finds out right?"

Duo shrugged, "It'll be worth it if we find your friend."

"What will be worth it?" A voice asked.

'Oh great, speak of Satan and she shall appear.' Heero thought as Une came into both of their sights.

"Oh hey boss!" Duo grinned.

"Maxwell what are you doing with the facial recognition system?" Une questioned, getting straight to the point.

"I'm trying to identify someone." Duo informed her as if it were obvious, "That is what one does when using it."

Heero had to facepalm at Duo's answer. The American pilot was about to get himself killed.

"Let me rephrase: Is what you're doing related to a case?" Une asked.

Duo hummed, "Possibly. Define what you mean by case."

"Duo you're going to orphan Ken if you keep this up." Heero told him. Duo held his ground and showed no fear of Une's anger.

"If you orphan me I will find a way to bring you back only to end you myself." Ken said as he joined him, a new bag of jelly babies in his hands.

Duo grinned, "Can't kill the God of Death."

Heero sighed, "For the love of- Duo I am not worth this."

Duo was about to respond when the machine beeped. He turned and took the results as it printed, "Huh, would you look at that." He said as he turned and handed them to Heero.

Heero took the results from Duo, only for his eyes to widen upon seeing them. Her chocolate brown hair was longer now, reaching the mid of her back from the looks of it, bronze yellow eyes(he had been right about them being as bright as the sun) behind burgundy framed glasses, and pallor-Asian skin flushed with joy at the trophy she was holding in her arms in the picture. Printed right under the plain to see was her whole name: Suzienita 'Suzie' Tsurugi.

Heero wondered just how to hell was he able to forget his childhood friend. He felt himself stagger a bit, tears starting to go down his face as memories of the two of them together began to hit him full force.

Duo stepped forward and wrapped an arm around Heero to help him stay on his feet as he steered them towards the nearest chair, "Breathe 'Ro."

"Maxwell what the fuck did you do?" Une questioned. Ken slinked away to go get Hitoshi and the other three pilots.

"I found his childhood friend." Duo told her, "Heero, tell me what you need."

"So not only did you use the facial recognition system for personal reasons but you go and break one of our best agents with it!?" Une inquired.

Heero wasn't able to say anything, tears rolling down his face faster as more memories flooded his head.

"I didn't break him." Duo snapped at her, "He's just overwhelmed at the moment." Duo wrapped his arms around Heero and rubbed his back. Ken came back at the moment with the other pilots and Hitoshi, cutting off whatever comeback Une was about to say.

"What happened?" Quatre asked Duo.

Duo explained the situation as he continued to gently rock Heero in his arms. Hitoshi sat down on the other side of Heero, gently prying the results out of his hands and handing it to one of the other pilots so it wouldn't get ruined.

"Is he going to be okay?" Calleigh asked.

"He will be fine." Trowa assured the younger boys, "Let's give them some space. You guys go wait in his office and we'll be there soon."

Quatre took the results and read through them, "This place isn't too far away. We could make a trip of it."

"Duo promised that I could punch him in the gut." Hitoshi said, pulling out some tissues so he could wipe away his older brother's tears. Une looked done with all out them, heading back to her office.

"I did and you can after Heero comes out of his memories." Duo promised.

"I think that's going to be a while." Calleigh said, seeing that Heero looked pretty spaced out at the moment.

"Go." Trowa ordered, "Hitoshi can stay but the rest of you go wait in the office."

"We've got you 'Ro." Duo whispered, "We've got you."

The others looked like they wanted to protest but decided not to, going to wait in Heero's office like they were told.

"Now what?" Wufei asked.

"Now we wait for him to come out of it." Duo said.

"We could wake him up the quick way." Trowa points out.

"Which is what?" Quatre asked.

Trowa shrugged, "Well, there's two ways I can think of off the top of my head... HEERO HITOSHI IS ABOUT TO JUMP OFF THE BUILDING!"

Hitoshi facepalmed at that, being mindful of his still healing eye. Heero didn't even flinch, still stuck in his head.

The rest of the pilots gave Trowa a deadpan look. Trowa shrugged, "The other option it to slap him until he wakes up."

"No." Quatre told him, "And we're not going to throw Hitoshi off the building either to wake Heero up."

"I think Trowa's brain cells left with Gervasi when the others went to Nii-san's office." Hitoshi stated.

Duo snorted, "His brain cells are with Cathy."

"Let's just give him time to wake up." Quatre told them.

Hitoshi took over gently rubbing Heero's back, mentally promising to give Duo the hardest punch he could muster later. Duo eyed Hitoshi from the otherside of Heero as if he could hear what the boy was thinking. Hitoshi started to hum a small tune that he picked up from a tv show as he continued to rub Heero's back.

The others took up various sitting positions across the room as they waited. Quatre looked up the town where this Suzie lived and found that he quite liked what he was seeing.

It was about 40 minutes later when Heero finally snapped out of it. Hitoshi had switched to a different tune during that time frame.

Duo was the first of the pilots to notice, "Hey there bud. You back with us?" He asked gently.

Heero nodded slowly, not trusting himself to speak and still kind of out of it. The sudden influx of memories had taken a toll on him, leaving him feeling sluggish.

Quatre brought over a bottle of water and held it up to Heero's lips, "Take a few sips, Heero."

Heero did so, tension slowly bleeding from his body as the water soothed his throat.

"I'm sorry 'Ro. I didn't think you'd react like that when I handed you the results." Duo apologized.

"He probably didn't think he would react like he did either." Hitoshi said. Heero nodded in agreement, leaning against the younger.

"Do you want one of us to drive you home?" Quatre asked him.

"I..I wanna k-know what y-you guys found f-first." Heero managed to stutter out.

"Of course." Quatre said, "We found that she lives less than a days drive from here..." Quatre continued to tell Heero what the report had said. Heero listened, trying to take as much as he could into his tired brain to have for later.

"Let me drive you home." Duo said softly, "We can go over everything when you feel better."

Heero let out a tired groan, mumbling something about getting his and Hitoshi's things from his office before leaving.

"We can grab them and meet you down at the car to give them to you." Quatre told him, "Go down to the car with Duo."

"Do you need help up Nii-san?" Hitoshi asked.

"I might, yeah." Heero answered.

"I've got you." Duo told him as he helped Heero stand.

Heero felt his legs shake slightly, causing him to lean against Duo, "Fuck.."

"You're okay. Tell me when you're ready." Duo told him as he wrapped one of Heero's arms around his shoulders.

Heero took a deep breath, waiting a few minutes for his legs to be less shaky before saying, "Okay."

"Hitoshi go grab Ken and meet us at the car." Duo told the teen after handing over his keys. He took it slow for Heero and went at a pace the other one could handle.

Hitoshi pocketed the keys, going to collect Ken. Heero appreciated the slow pace.

"Let me know if you need to go slower." Duo told him.

"I will." Heero said. They walked in companionable silence on the way to the parking garage. Heero gently rubbed his head with his free hand, trying to subside some of the pounding it was doing.

Duo glanced at him, "You okay?"

Heero slowly shook his head, "Head hurts. Got hit pretty hard."

Duo frowned, "Well, we're gonna get you home so you can rest."

"Rest is good. And pie. Wait do I suddenly want pie?" Heero asked.

Duo couldn't help but snort, "Pie? Why do you want pie?"

"I don't know. I don't think I even liked pie that much as a kid." Heero said.

"Maybe someone you knew did like it?" Duo asked as they entered the garage.

"Nita liked cobbler more than pie half the time. Her favorite was blackberry." Heero answered. Duo hummed as he listened and waved at the boys as they waited by the car.

The boys were sharing Ken's bag of jelly babies with Hitoshi carrying both his and Heero's things.

"I swear he's going to turn into a jelly bean if he keeps eating them." Duo muttered under his breath.

"Those are jelly babies, not jelly beans." Heero said.

"Same difference." Duo told him.

"Jelly babies are the British equivalent of gummy bears." Heero stated.

"I'm well aware of what they are." Duo told him, "I've had to start hiding them because it's all he'll eat."

"Teenagers eat junk food Duo." Heero said.

"Yes I know." Duo scowled at him as they reached the car, "Alright, in you go." He said as he helped ease Heero inside. Heero groaned some, buckling up once he was fully inside.

Duo made sure the boys climbed into the backseat before he got in the driver's seat and started them on their way to Heero's house. Heero rested his head against the window.

"Is Heero feeling any better?" Ken asked.

"A little bit." Duo told him, "Once we get him home he'll rest up and then he'll be good to go."

"That's good." Ken said, "Calleigh found something interesting while we were waiting."

"Oh?" Duo said curiously.

Ken nodded, "Apparently the picture from the results is from a news article. Heero's friend won an art contest last month, which explains the trophy. It's supposed to be put up on display at some exhibit thing sometime this month."

"Really? Maybe we should go check it out." Duo told him.

"I think it's supposed to be something fancy. Like really fancy." Ken stated.

"Good thing we have fancy clothes in the back of our closets then." Duo grinned.

"Gala fancy or reception fancy?" Heero asked.

"Second one." Ken replied.

"We can make a group trip out of it." Duo told them.

"Didn't Quatre say it was a six hour drive?" Heero asked.

Duo nodded, "Yeah, but we've all been saying we need to take a little weekend getaway."

Heero shook his head in amusement, "Only thing left is to find my older brother."

"Maybe he's there too." Duo suggested.

Heero hummed, "Maybe. Last I remember is that he was with my grandparents."

"We have grandparents?" Hitoshi asked.

"Where were they at?" Duo asked him, "Maybe we can look them up."

"Yes we have grandparents." Heero told Hitoshi then looked at Duo, "I haven't remember that yet. All I do remember is that they're somewhere on earth. Sofu used to be a police chief and Sobo was a nurse."

Duo hummed, "Do you remember their names?"

Heero was quiet for a moment, "Hiroshi and Reita."

"Alright. I can work with that." Duo said.

Heero laid his head back against the window, letting his mind wander a bit.

Duo glanced over at him but didn't say anything.

"Today has been very hard for his brain. And he still has course work to do." Hitoshi said.

Duo was tempted to make a joke about Heero's brain but didn't think it was an appropriate time.

Ken blinked, "Course work?"

"Nii-san has been doing online schooling." Hitoshi replied.

"He's finishing what he needs to legally get his high school diploma." Duo told him.

"Oh." Ken said, "Are you and the others doing that too?"

"Quat and Fei are." Duo told him, "Not sure if Trowa is. And I already finished my coursework. I'm an official high school graduate."

"When did that happen?" Heero asked, momentarily tuning back in.

"Few months ago." Duo told him, "It wasn't that big a deal so I didn't really tell anyone."

"Considering everything we went through, it is a big deal." Heero stated.

Duo shrugged, "It's just a piece of paper. 'Sides we all know if you really wanted to, you Quat, and Fei would be done already."

"Wufei and I probably. Quatre still has CEO work." Heero reminded.

"Please, he's smarter than all of us combined. He might look all sweet and innocent but he's a vicious devil when he wants to be." Duo muttered.

Heero bit back a snort, "So you're saying he is the son of Satan?"

"I didn't say that." Duo told him.

"It was implied." Heero informed him.

Duo snorted, "I did not call one of my best friends the son of Satan."

"You called Heero an alien once." Ken pointed out.

"When did I call him an alien?" Duo asked.

Ken thought for a moment, "Last week after dinner when you were talking about the time he punched you in the gut."

"Ahh." Duo hummed, "I've called him worse to his face before." He shrugged.

"You accused me of being superman once." Heero said.

"That's not really an insult though... and that was only because of your freakish strength."

"My strength isn't that freakish."

"Fine... not freakish... just supernatural." Duo smirked.

Heero rolled his eyes, "Be lucky that I am sluggish right now."

Duo grinned, "Please, you could still just barely hit me and give me a concussion." He teased.

"Big bro behave." Ken said.

"I am behaving." Duo told him.

"Suuure you are." Ken stated.

Duo arched an eyebrow at him through the rearview mirror.

Ken just popped a piece of candy into his mouth as a response.

"You and that damn candy." Duo muttered, "It's a wonder that you don't have any cavities."

"It's because unlike you, I actually brush my teeth after eating sugary things." Ken stated.

"I brush mine too, why do you think I still have all of them?" Duo asked before sticking out his tongue.

"I thought you lost one during the war?" Heero asked.

"Got it replaced." Duo grinned.

"Does it still count as having all of them then if you had to get one replaced?" Heero inquired.

"Yes." Duo said, "Because I didn't lose it by eating sweets." He didn't need to mention that he lost it after being beaten up by OZ soldiers.

"Fair enough." Heero said. Duo flashed him a grin. Heero gave him an affectionate eye roll.

Duo continued to grin as he pulled into Heero's driveway, "Why don't you boys go get comfy inside while I help Heero in?"

"Alright." The two said, gathering their stuff with Hitoshi getting Heero's things and exiting the car, heading into the house.

Duo made his way to the passenger side and helped Heero out of the car.

"Thanks." Heero said. Thankfully his legs weren't too shaky this time around.

"Not a problem." Duo told him as they made their way up to the house, "Couch or bed?"

"Bed. The couch starts to be uncomfortable after a certain amount of time." Heero explained.

"Alright." Duo nodded as he helped Heero to his bedroom.

"The boys probably made themselves comfy in the living room." Heero said, opening the door to his bedroom.

"That's fine. After you get settled, I'll check on them." Duo said.

"Alright." Heero said, shrugging off his uniform jacket.

"I'm not undressing you though." Duo said.

"I'm probably just going to sleep in my clothes." Heero told him.

Duo made a face, "That's gonna be uncomfortable."

Heero shrugged, "Don't think my legs are going to cooperate long enough for me to change into sweats."

Duo rolled his eyes and went to rummage through Heero's dresser, "That's why you change sitting down." He told Heero as he threw sweats at him.

Heero caught the sweats, already working off his shoes, "The bedroom is not a place for logic."

Duo snorted, "No it's a place for sleeping and sleeping."

"I think one requires a bedmate for the second one." Heero stated, sitting on the edge of his bed.

Duo grinned, "Indeed it does. I'm gonna go check on the boys. Be back in a minute."

"Alright. I should be changed when you get back." Heero said.

Duo nodded and walked out of the room. He closed the door and headed to the living room to check on the younger teens, "You two good?"

"Yes." The two said. They had gotten comfy on the couch, a bowl of mixed fruit on the table as the TV played some sort of horror show. Duo patted their heads and headed into the kitchen to get a bottle of water for Heero before he headed back to the room. He knocked on the door and waited for Heero to respond.

"It's open." Came Heero's reply from the other side of the door.

Duo opened it and entered the room, "Feeling any better?" He asked as he sat the water where Heero could reach it.

"A little bit. My head still hurts and my eyes are a little irritated with all the crying I did." Heero answered. True to his word, he was already in sweats.

"Why don't you take a nap?" Duo suggested, "I'll watch the boys."

Heero blinked, "Are you sure? I already feel bad enough pulling you out of work early."

"It's fine." Duo assured him, "Missing a few hours of work won't hurt anyone."

Heero bit back a yawn, "Alright. Wake me up if something happens."

"Will do. Get some rest." Duo told him as he left the room again and went to join the teens, "You guys want some real food?"

"Fruit is technically real food but yes." Hitoshi said. Ken nodded in agreement.

"What you guys want? Pizza, burgers, whatever 'Ro has in the fridge?" Duo grinned.

"Let's see what's in the fridge first." Ken said.

Duo led the way into the kitchen and inspected the food. The contents of the fridge ranged all the way from sandwich meat to smoked sausage to homemade ramen ingredients.

Duo frowned at the contents, "Did Heero have anything planned for dinner tonight?"

"I think he set aside something in the freeze to cook for dinner tonight. I know part of it is honey battered chicken tenders." Hitoshi said.

"Alright, we'll just cook that a little bit early." Duo told him.

"Okay." Hitoshi said, putting the bowl of fruit away. Duo pulled out everything needed to make it and then started mixing and cooking. The boys each got themselves something to drink with Ken getting a drink for Duo.

When Duo was done cooking he put aside a plate for Heero and stuck it in the microwave to keep warm, "Alright boys, time to eat."

The two sat down at the table with Hitoshi taking his usual spot at the left of it.

Duo brought the food to the table and sat down across from Ken, "Tuck in."

The boys started to eat after that was said, enjoying their food.

"What do you two have planned for after dinner?" He asked them.

"Probably more TV shows or video games. We already have our homework finished." Ken said.

"Maybe try to look into more schools." Hitoshi commented.

Duo nodded, "Found any you like?"

They both shook their heads, "Not yet we haven't."

"Keep looking, I'm sure you'll find something." Duo encouraged.

"It's not in our city but the school that Heero's friend goes to sounded kind of interesting." Ken said.

"Oh?" Duo asked curiously, "What about it sounds interesting?"

"It offers both regular and elite classes." Ken explained, "It lets the students decide if they want their class schedule to be completely regular classes, completely elite classes, or a mixture of both."

"Interesting." Duo said, "If we go to view the trophy, we'll have to check out the school."

"The only downside so far is that there's a school uniform policy from what we've seen in the pictures." Ken stated.

"Some uniforms are better than others." Duo pointed out.

"Does that include your work uniform?" Ken asked.

"The Preventers uniform isn't that bad." Duo said, "I've worn worse."

"There's something worse besides the Preventers uniform?" Hitoshi asked.

"Have you seen the uniforms from the Barton Foundation?" Duo asked.

Hitoshi gave him a flat look, "Was in the tube during that time frame."

Duo pulled out his phone and pulled up a picture of Wufei and Trowa in the Barton Foundation uniforms.

Hitoshi looked at the picture, "Was the person who made this on acid or something?"

"She was an eight year old girl." Duo told him as he pulled up a different picture of Une and Mari, "She was Treize's daughter, not sure if he knew about her, but she ended up being adopted by Une."

"Did Une bring her in today for bring your kind to work day?" Ken asked.

"If she did, I didn't see her." Duo shrugged.

"She probably stayed in Miss Une's office." Hitoshi said. That was what his plan had been due to his still healing eye.

"Probably." Duo agreed.

Ken nodded as Hitoshi went back to eating. Duo put his phone away and continued eating his food. Heero came and joined them a while later, the smell of food having woken him up. Duo got up and pulled the plate out of the microwave and placed it in front of him.

"Thank you." Heero yawned, doing a quick mumble of 'thank you for the meal' before he started eating.

"No problem." Duo told him as he went back to his own meal, "We were talking about how some uniforms are worse than others."

"I didn't care too much for the Saint Gabriel Academy uniforms." Heero stated.

Duo snickered, "They were horrible. I showed them pictures of Tro and Fei in the Barton Foundation uniforms."

Heero shook his head, "Those uniforms shouldn't have seen the light of day. Then again I think I would take those over the ones from Saint Gabriel's. Or the ones from the Sanc Kingdom's school."

"You're the one that kept going undercover at schools." Duo pointed out.

"Normal kids go to school Duo or else they end up in jail for truancy." Heero told him, "Besides the school we were undercover at wasn't that bad. At least there no one thought I was someone's servant."

"That actually happened?" Hitoshi asked.

Duo smirked, "More times than he likes to admit."

"The students of the Sanc Kingdom's school thought I was Quatre's servant." Heero answered. Duo snickered.

Hitoshi frowned at that, "Boo on them."

"Relena still teases him about it." Duo said.

"Don't remind me." Heero told him.

Duo just smirked.

Heero rolled his eyes, "What even brought up the talk of uniforms?"

"They found a school they're interested in but they have uniforms." Duo informed him.

"Ah. Is it in town?" Heero asked.

"No." Duo said carefully, "It's... ahh... it's the same school your friend is currently attending."

Heero froze at that, his fork halfway to his mouth. Duo watched him carefully.

Poor Hitoshi pinched the bridge of his nose, "Nii-san, are you okay?"

"Yeah..just caught off guard was all..." Heero replied.

"I think it would be worth checking out." Duo said.

"What got them interested in the school?" Heero asked, setting his fork down.

"Ask them." Duo said gesturing to the boys.

"It offers elite and regular classes and lets the students decide if they want a mix of the two or just one or the other." Ken explained.

"They've done their research." Duo said.

"I saw Quatre doing research on the town while we were waiting on you to come out of your memories. I think he was pleased with what he saw so far." Hitoshi informed.

"He was." Duo agreed, "It's a nice place, low crime rate, good schools."

"Natsurane High, the one Heero's friend goes to, seems more tame compared to the other two high schools we had looked at that the city has." Ken said.

"What do you think, 'Ro?" Duo asked.

"It sounds like it would be worth checking out." Heero said, "Though you make it sound like the other two high schools are extreme."

"Oak Valley High is an elite school that is just on the borderline of being a private school because of how it's laid out and North River Academy is a private school that pulls out all the stops." Ken told him.

"They probably charge the same if not more than the private school." Duo snorted.

"The uniforms are a different color for each year/grade for Oak Valley." Ken stated.

"That's ridiculous. You'd have to buy a new one each year." Duo stated.

"And that's not counting winter uniforms." Heero added.

Duo made a face, "That's too many uniforms."

Heero nodded, "Natsurane sounds like a better fit but maybe we should check it out first before fully deciding."

"That's what I suggested." Duo told him.

"Though that was if we end up going to go see the exhibit that's going to be showing Suzie's contest piece." Hitoshi said.

"I think we should make a weekend trip out of it." Duo said, "We can go see the exhibit and take a tour of the school."

"The exhibit isn't till later in the month." Ken informed him, "And with how big the city seems to be, there would still be the matter of actually finding Heero's friend in the city."

"If she attends the school then it won't be too hard to find her." Duo said, "A little distraction and a quick peek into the student files will tell us exactly what we need to know."

"Files will only tell location, not schedule. What if she has a job or something?" Heero asked.

"Then we wait for her to go home so you can talk to her there." Duo told him.

Heero gave him a flat look, "Nita has six siblings. I want to be able to talk to her one on one without the risk of nosy siblings."

"And you think you'll have privacy at her work?" Duo asked.

"With work she can take an early lunch break." Heero argued.

"If her boss let's her." Duo pointed out, "But what if she isn't at work? What if she's hanging out with her friends or with a boyfriend?"

Heero felt his grip on his fork tighten at the mention of the last part. Hitoshi tried hard not to facepalm or to go ahead and punch Duo in the gut then and there.

Duo sat back in his chair, arms folded over his chest. He knew he was playing a dangerous game here but it was best if Heero lost control here and not in front of his long lost friend.

Heero took a short breath, "If she's hanging out with friends then I simply wait another day."

Duo eyed him, "And if she is with her boyfriend or girlfriend if she swings that way? What then, 'Ro?"

"Duo that's enough." Hitoshi said, giving him a glare. Duo glanced at him to show that he'd heard the younger teen before turning his gaze back to Heero.

Heero sat down his fork, "I'm not hungry anymore." He muttered, getting up from the table. Duo said nothing as Heero stood.

"Do you want me to put your leftovers in the fridge?" Hitoshi asked.

"Yes." Heero answered then left the kitchen, heading back to his room.

Duo sighed and let his head fall back, "Hitoshi, if you're going to punch me at least let my dinner digest first."

"You went too far and I'm going to have to call Quatre to fix whatever damage you have done." Hitoshi said, grabbing a random pack of crackers.

"If your brother needs to lose control it's best he do it here instead of when he meets his friend." Was all Duo said.

"He doesn't. He may not have said much but it's very clear that he cares about her a lot." Hitoshi stated.

"I'm aware of how much he cares for her." Duo stated gently, "But I also know that if he were to do something idiotic because he couldn't handle something like his friend having a boy or girlfriend then he would never forgive himself."

"He wouldn't do something idiotic. Okay let me rephrase, he wouldn't do something idiotic that would upset her." Hitoshi explained then cringed as if he heard something, "And now he's puking his guts out."

Duo groaned, "I'll take care of it. You two finish eating." Duo said as he stood and headed towards the bathroom.

"Take the crackers with you. He's going to need them." Hitoshi told him, tossing him the pack of crackers.

Duo caught them, already preparing himself to be punched in the gut. He knocked on the door to let Heero know he was there before opening it and stepping inside. Heero was on his knees, practically hugging the toilet as he emptied out his stomach.

Duo placed the crackers on the counter and knelt next to Heero as he rubbed his back. Heero coughed into the toilet a few times before groaning and resting his head on his arms. Duo continued to rub his back to give him some silent support. Heero panted softly, trying to catch his breath. Duo sat back on his heels and waited.

"Did Hitoshi send up the crackers?" Heero groaned out.

"On the counter." Duo told him.

"Can you hand them to me? Hugging the toilet is the only thing keeping me upright." Heero said.

Duo reached over Heero to grab the crackers and opened them before handing them over. Heero accepted the crackers, taking a few out of the pack and nibbling on them.

"Do you want to talk about it?" Duo asked.

"No. Maybe. I don't know yet." Heero said around the crackers.

"Whenever you're ready." Duo told him, "You wanna lean back against me?"

"I fear that if I move that I will empty my stomach again." Heero replied.

"Alright." Duo agreed easily, "I'll grab you some water." He said before heading to the bedroom to grab the bottle of water from earlier.

Heero stuffed a few more crackers into his mouth. Duo came back and opened the bottle before holding it out for Heero to take.

"Thanks." Heero said, accepting the bottle and taking a few swigs of it.

When he was done, Duo took the bottle and set it aside, "Feeling better?" He asked.

"A little. The crackers helped more than the water." Heero answered.

Duo nodded and sat back against the wall. Heero put the crackers back on the counter then resting his head on his arms again.

"When I stole your sketchbook I told Hitoshi he could punch me in the stomach if it upsets you in any way." Duo informed him.

"You realize that you probably signed your death wish right?" Heero asked.

"Yep." Duo nodded.

"Do we need to call you an alternate ride home?" Heero asked.

"Nah, It'll be fine." Duo grinned.

Heero gave him a look, "You know there is about a 50% chance that you could end up out cold right? I don't know if J gave him my strength but I've noticed that J gave him some heightened hearing."

"If anything just give Ken the keys." Duo told him, "And throw me in the backseat."

"Does Ken even have a learners permit?" Heero questioned him.

"Not yet." Duo said, "He's taking the test soon."

"Might just be better to have one of the others give you a ride if anything happens." Heero stated.

Duo shrugged, "Or just leave me knocked out on the floor."

"Floors aren't comfy to sleep on." Heero told him.

"Neither are Gundam cockpits but we made it work." Duo retorted.

"Yeah but we didn't have a choice then." Heero pointed out, "This time we do."

"True." Duo agreed.

Heero groaned, "Speaking of choices, I need to figure out how I'm going to look for my brother."

"Why don't you put your DNA in the system?" Duo suggested, "Or see if your friend knows when you talk to her."

"Might be easier to do the first one." Heero said, "If Masato was in the city with our grandparents, who is to say that he's still there?"

Duo shrugged, "I would look for Solo but I already know he died in the L2 virus and I don't remember having any other siblings. So I wouldn't know."

"Just because you don't remember having any others doesn't mean that you don't have any." Heero pointed out, "A lot of families got separated during the war."

"I know." Duo said, "How's your stomach feeling?"

"Better. I think. At least better enough to let me go back to bed if I decide to." Heero said.

Duo nodded, "You want to give it another minute?"

"Yeah. Better safe than sorry." Heero told him.

"Take your time." Duo told him.

Heero let out a small yawn, "I could probably sleep through the night at this point."

Duo chuckled, "Probably. You've had quite a shock."

"Too many memories. Not enough process time." Heero moaned.

Duo nodded, "You need a good long rest."

"I could probably sleep for a week." Heero agreed.

"I don't think Une would agree with you missing so much work." Duo told him.

"Une can suck it, I have unused vacation and sick days." Heero pointed out.

"I suggest taking them if you think you'll need that long off." Duo said, "You ready to move?"

Heero nodded, "Yeah."

"You need help or you think you got it?" Duo asked as he stood.

"Let me see if I can get up from the toilet first." Heero said.

"Alright." Duo nodded. Heero pushed himself onto his feet, his legs wobbling slightly but he wasn't falling over.

Duo opened the door for him, "You got it?"

"I think so, yeah." Heero said, carefully making his way over to the door.

Duo stood to the side to give him room but stayed close enough to where he could catch Heero if his legs gave out.

Heero managed to make his way out of the bathroom, legs still wobbly but with no danger of giving out just yet. Duo followed behind him as a precaution. Heero made his way back to his room, intending on most likely going back to sleep unless someone woke him up.

"You need anything?" Duo asked as he waited by the door to the room.

"Probably another water bottle. Other than that, just wake me up if something happens or if I'm needed." Heero said.

"I'll grab that for you." Duo said and made his way to the kitchen, grabbed the bottle, and then made his way back to the bedroom, "Do you want us to stay the night in case anything happens?"

Heero thought for a moment, "Only if you two want to. I don't think Hitoshi is going to have a nightmare tonight but maybe better safe than sorry on that front."

"It's no problem." Duo told him, "I'm sure the boys would love a sleepover."

"Alright. You already know where I keep the spare toiletries and other stuff." Heero stated.

"Yep. Get some rest, 'Ro. I'll be a shout away if you need anything." Duo told him as he left the room and closed the door.

Heero pretty much crashed onto his bed, getting comfortable and falling back asleep. Duo went back to clean up the kitchen and to check on the younger two teens. The boys had already cleared their plates and had put Heero's leftovers away.

"Heero's laying down again." Duo told Hitoshi, "Ken, go grab our bags from the car, we're staying here tonight."

"Okay." Ken said, getting up.

"At this rate he's going to end up sleeping for a week." Hitoshi stated.

"He said that as well. He also said he might take the week off so he can." Duo told him as he cleaned up his plate and started washing the dishes.

"Well between his job, his coursework, and taking care of me, I don't think he gets much rest." Hitoshi commented.

"That's been how he is since I've known him." Duo sighed, "I'm kinda surprised he even suggested taking time off."

"Well he did suffer a major shock today." Hitoshi pointed out, "And I think the brain doctor told him to try to take things slow."

"We'll see how well he listens to that advice." Duo told him.

"Kind of well because I haven't caught him doing late night homework lately." Hitoshi informed him.

Duo nodded, "That's good."

"Though I think I kept him up a few minutes though with my nightmares." Hitoshi admitted.

"He doesn't mind you waking him up or keeping him up." Duo assured him.

"You sure?" Hitoshi asked.

"Positive." Duo nodded, "None of us mind being woken up or kept awake if one of you needs us."

"Okay." Hitoshi said.

Duo smiled at him, "Want some ice cream? Pretty sure I saw some in the freezer."

Hitoshi beamed at that, "Yes. I should probably take my eyepatch off first, I need to check on my eye."

"Do you need help checking it?" Duo asked as he took out three bowls.

"Yeah. Sally says that if it looks like it's getting better that I don't have to wear my eyepatch as much unless I'm leaving the house." Hitoshi told him.

Duo nodded and put the bowls down before walking over to Hitoshi, "Alright, ready when you are."

Hitoshi gently took off his eyepatch. The black eye was now a yellowish-green color and still looked a bit bad but it wasn't as bad as it first was when he got it.

Duo looked at it carefully and hummed as he tilted Hitoshi's face up slightly, "It looks better. You could probably keep the eyepatch off for now."

Hitoshi set the eyepatch off to the side, "Alright. Sally said I didn't have to sleep with it on as long as I'm careful getting ready for bed."

Duo nodded and went back to dishing out the ice cream, "Can you go check on Ken? He should have been back inside by now."

"Oh no, the neighbor's cat might be denying him access to the door." Hitoshi said, getting up.

"The neighbor has a cat?" Duo asked.

"Well not officially. It's more of the neighborhood stray but the nice lady next door has been feeding him and letting him stay in during the change in weather." Hitoshi explained, "Nii-san and I made him a lil kitty tent once and now he randomly guards the door."

"Ahh." Duo nodded as he placed the bowls on the table, "Let's go see."

Hitoshi walked over to the door and opened it. The sight before the two was Ken basically being held hostage by a 7 month old kitten.

"Cute." Duo said as he picked the kitten up and held it in a way that it wouldn't be able to bite or scratch him, "You're a cute little thing."

The kitten mewed, not happy at being randomly picked up by someone he doesn't know.

"Hello Dibby." Hitoshi said, gently scratching behind the kitten's ears.

"Trowa knows some groups that take in cats and kittens." Duo said, "I'll text him a picture of this cutie and have him contact one of the groups."

Dibby leaned into Hitoshi's hand, purring softly.

"I think the lady next door is wanting to take him in. If she doesn't, I told Nii-san that we're taking him in." Hitoshi said.

Duo laughed, "Alright, out you go." He sat the kitten down and motioned to Ken to come back in, "Ice cream is on the table."

"Sweet." Ken said, making his way back inside as Dibby made his way to his kitten tent.

Duo closed the door and followed the boys into the kitchen. Ken set their bags down on the couch before making his way into the kitchen. Duo sat at the table and began eating his own ice cream. The two boys followed suit, enjoying their dessert.

"What do you two plan on doing for the rest of the night?" He asked.

"Most likely either TV or video games." Ken said.

"We already got homework finished." Hitoshi added.

"Both of those are good options." Duo told them.

"I think it really depends on what is on TV tonight." Ken stated.

"You could always pop in a movie." Duo pointed out.

"I think we went through most of the movies last time." Hitoshi said.

Duo hummed and nodded, "You'd probably have more fun playing video games then."

Ken looked at Hitoshi, "Did we ever finish that weird fruity smoothie game?"

"No we did not." Hitoshi said.

"Do I even want to know?" Duo asked.

"We found a really weird free game where you play as fruit to stop evil vegetables." Ken explained.

"Interesting." Duo mused, "You know, if you really want something to do, you could make your own video game."

"We thought about it, we're not sure what it would be about." Hitoshi said.

"You could make it about anything." Duo shrugged, "A kitten looking for a home, a group of teens finding ways to get rid of bullies, etc."

"They just recently came out with a game where you can go around solving mysteries as cats." Ken pointed out.

"Did they? Interesting."

"I can't remember what it's called but it looked cool."

"I'm sure you two will have fun playing it." Duo told them.

"Mystery solving cats are always fun." Hitoshi said.

Duo nodded his agreement, "Finish your ice cream and then you can go play."

The two went back to their ice cream, finishing it right as the trio started to hear noise coming from the front door.

"Stay here." Duo told them as he went to investigate, one hand on his gun that was holstered on his belt.

"Please don't let it be the raccoons again." Hitoshi mumbled, banging his head on the table.

Duo peeked out the window next to the door and saw it had begun to rain. He opened the door slightly and blinked when the kitten squeezed inside, "Hey little guy. You get all wet?" Duo picked the kitten up and went to get a towel to dry him off before heading back to the kitchen, "Someone wanted to come inside where it's warm and dry."

"Mrs. Anderson probably isn't home then if Dibby decided to come over here." Hitoshi said. Dibby practically curled up into the towel, purring away now that he was dry.

"We've got you little guy." Duo said as he gently rubbed Dibby dry. Dibby continued to purr away, letting out soft mewls. Duo gently scratched behind his ears, smiling as the kitten purred.

"Well I'm going to go get Dibby's bowls and box set up for the night." Hitoshi said as he put his bowl in the sink.

Duo nodded, "Sounds good. You want to explore little one?" He placed Dibby on the floor. Dibby sniffed around as he explored the kitchen then meowed, realizing that there was a human missing.

"Looking for Heero? He's asleep." Duo told the kitten. Dibby looked like he was pouting. How dare one of his favorite humans not be around to greet him.

Duo laughed softly, "If you stick around in the morning you might see him."

Dibby accepted that then went over to his food and water bowls when he heard the food bowl being filled.

Duo chuckled and picked up the empty bowls to wash them. Dibby started to chow away. Hitoshi gently rubbed Dibby's ears before going to set up the kitten's litter box. When Duo was done with the dishes he gave the counters and table a quick wipe down before going to sit in one of the armchairs with his laptop to finish up the last few reports he had for the day.

The boys had decided to play video games once Dibby's litter box was set up, the kitten joining them when his belly was full.

Duo glanced up when they came into the living room but went back to his current report. The two started to play the game they were talking about earlier. Dibby made himself comfy on Hitoshi's head. Duo looked up a while later and snickered when he saw the kitten on Hitoshi's head. He quickly snapped a picture with his phone and saved it to show to Heero later.

"Why the crap are we an orange and a pineapple now?!" Ken asked as he mashed buttons.

"Don't question it! We agreed not to question this game when we started playing!" Hitoshi reminded him. Duo chuckled as he listened to their commentary.

"But they're farting children out now!"

"No questions! Time limit man!"

Duo shook his head, he didn't want to know. The commentary from the two kept up for a while until there was no more sound. Duo looked up when the noise stopped.

"It took us three weeks...three weeks to beat this game and there's only 21 levels?" Ken asked, feeling his eye twitch.

"I feel betrayed." Hitoshi said.

Duo chuckled, "Is it completely done or are they adding more levels?"

"Completely done." The two said.

"Well that sucks." He agreed as he glanced at the time, "It's starting to get late and you two have school tomorrow."

They both groaned at the mention of school.

"Go get ready for bed." He told them.

They both got up and headed upstairs, Hitoshi being mindful of Dibby and Ken grabbing his bag. Duo finished the last of his reports and closed his laptop as he waited for the boys to finish. Ken came back down stairs when he was done but Hitoshi wasn't with him.

"Hitoshi still getting ready?" Duo asked.

"He went to check on Heero." Ken said.

"Ahh." Duo nodded.

"He'll be back down in a minute." Ken told him.

"That's fine." Duo said, "You okay? It's been a long day."

Ken nodded, "I'm fine, a bit tired though. Do agree with Hitoshi that you pushed a bit too hard at dinner."

"And that's fine. I know what Heero can handle and what he can't. I might have pushed a little far but it would have wound up being mentioned at some point." Duo said softly.

"You gotta let him figure things out on his own though." Ken pointed out, "This is important to him so it's obvious that he's not going to rush into this."

"I know. Which is why I backed off." Duo told him. Ken went to say something else but Hitoshi came back at that moment, minus Dibby.

"Dibby decide to stay with 'Ro?" Duo asked him.

"Yep so Nii-san has a cuddle buddy now." Hitoshi answered.

Duo smiled, "You two ready for bed?"

The two nodded, "Yeah, just not ready for school."

"Why? Worried about something?" He asked.

"I'm not sure if it's a gut feeling or if it's where I inherited Nii-san's soldier paranoia but I wouldn't put it past the bullies to try something funny after how the trial went." Hitoshi explained.

Duo sighed, "We will actually have an undercover agent there to keep an eye on things. If they try anything and the agent isn't there for whatever reason you call us immediately. And consequences be damned, if you need to use force to get them to understand then you have permission."

The boys felt a little better at that news, "Okay."

"Alright, get to bed." Duo told them as he stood to hug them both, "Yell if you need anything."

"We will." They said, hugging him back then going upstairs to go to bed.

Duo grabbed his bag and went to shower and change before going to bed. The boys were out like a light in no time. Duo checked on them before entering the spare room and going to sleep.

Chapter Text

Heero woke up the next morning, blinking when he found Dibby on his face who was kneading away at his cheeks.

Duo knocked on his door around that time, already dressed in his Preventers uniform, "Heero, you awake?"

"Dibby how to hell did you get into my house?" Heero asked, looking at the cream colored Japanese bobtail kitten.

"Mew." Dibby mewled, continuing his biscuit making practice.

Duo opened the door and poked his head in, "Oh you are awake good. I see Dibby has told you good morning. He was scratching on the door after it started raining last night so I let him in."

"Well that explains how Dibby got into my house. Though I think Dibby has decided that I am bread now." Heero said. Dibby mewed as if to agree.

Duo chuckled, "You feel up to going into work today or you wanna stay here?"

"I may as well go in. I already finished up my coursework for the week so I'll be bored if I stay here." Heero answered, moving Dibby off of his face as he sat up.

Duo nodded, "The boys are up and dressed and breakfast is on the table."

"I'll be down after I shower and dress." Heero said. Dibby carefully made his way off of Heero's bed, deciding to go eat food as well.

Duo nodded and closed the door after Dibby had left the room. He picked up the small kitten and cuddled it to his chest as he headed towards the kitchen. Dibby purred, cuddling up to Duo's chest to enjoy the attention more.

"Such a cutie." Duo cooed as they entered the kitchen, "I don't want to put you down."

"You have to though if you want to eat. Plus I'm pretty sure he's hungry." Ken said from the table.

"Shush you." Duo told him as he cuddle with the kitten for another minute before setting him down in front of his food. Dibby started eating right away, his little ears wiggling as he did.

Duo chuckled and took a picture of him before sitting down to eat his own breakfast, "Heero will be down after he showers."

"Okay." Hitoshi said, his reply a bit muffled due to the bite of pancake he had in his mouth.

Duo bit into his own pancake and sighed happily, "Mmm."

Heero came done once he was showered and dressed, his hair slightly damp.

"Your plate is in the microwave." Duo told him.

"Thank you." Heero said, getting his plate from the microwave and joining them at the table. Duo nodded and passed him the syrup. Heero accepted the syrup, pouring some on his pancakes and started eating.

"Are you going to let Dibby stay inside while you're gone or is he going back outside?" Duo asked.

Heero looked over at the kitten, "Does Dibby promise no wild kitty parties while I'm at work today?"

Dibby mewed, as if to say yes.

"Then Dibby can stay inside and explore." Heero said.

Duo snorted, "Wild kitty parties?"

"It could happen." Heero argued.

Duo gave him an amused look and went back to his food.

"I could've sworn I saw Dibby driving a remote control car once." Hitoshi said.

"Uh Huh." Duo said, "I'm sure you did."

"Hey you are more than welcome to ask Dibby yourself." Hitoshi stated. Duo shook his head in amusement and finished his food.

"No one knows what Dibby does in his spare time." Hitoshi said.

"So Dibby could have a side business of peddling catnip?" Ken asked.

"Dibby no catnip peddling if you're going to live with us." Heero stated.

Duo snorted, "But what if he needs the money?"

"Unless he has a debt or a kitty timeshare, he doesn't need the money." Heero said.

"Sure he does. How else is he gonna buy premium catnip for the female cats?" Duo teased.

"Duo he's too young for that." Heero told him.

"Cats can start reproducing at four months old." Duo told him, "He's what? Six months old? Might have some kittens already."

"He's seven months and that's why I told him no wild kitty parties." Heero answered.

"Well unless you leave a window or door open, I doubt he'd be able to throw a party." Duo said.

"He could figure out something." Heero said as he finished up his pancakes.

Duo just stood and collected the dishes that weren't being used, "Boys if your done go get ready for school."

The boys finished up their food and went to go get ready for school.

"I'm going to have to figure out something for dinner tonight." Heero said.

"Just pick something up on the way home." Duo told him, "Or let Hitoshi pick."

"I'm not sure if Une's going to make me pull a late shift tonight because of what happened yesterday." Heero pointed out.

"I doubt it. If anyone gets a late shift, it'll be me." Duo told him.

"You did that for me though so Une will probably see it as both of our faults." Heero stated.

Duo shrugged, "Then I'll work both shifts."

Heero sighed, "Duo you are not working both shifts."

Duo pretended not to hear him as he began to wash the dishes. Heero shook his head, going to make sure he had his things for work for the day. Duo finished the dishes and went to gather all of his items.

Dibby decided to go exploring as the humans got ready for the day. When Duo was done he went to place his bags back in the trunk and then went to check on the boys.

The boys had just finished grabbing their stuff, giving Dibby some head scratches before they left for school.

"Ready to go?" Duo asked them as he grabbed the jacket that went with his uniform.

"Yep." They answered as they stood up, making Dibby meow in protest at the lack of head scratches.

Duo chuckled and kneeled down to scratch him, "You'll get more scratches later bud."

Dibby purred, leaning into Duo's hand as he mewed.

Duo smiled and gave a few more scratches before pulling away, "Alright, let's go wait for Heero in the car."

"I'm here. Was double checking that my room was kitten proof." Heero said, coming down the stairs.

Duo laughed and stood, "Well let's hit the road then."

"Remember Dibby, no parties." Heero said. Dibby only mewled at that, jumping onto the couch.

Duo led the way out to the car and climbed into the driver's seat. Heero locked the door to his house and got in the passenger seat, leaving the boys to get in the back.

"Everyone ready?" Duo asked, "Buckled in?"

"Yep." The boys answered.

"Yes." Heero said.

Duo pulled out of the driveway and towards the boys school, "You remember what I told you last night?"

"That there's going to be an undercover agent at the school to keep an eye on things." Ken started.

"If the bullies try anything and the agent isn't there for some season, call you guys immediately." Hitoshi added.

Duo nodded, "You also have permission to use force to defend yourselves if needed."

"Hopefully it won't come to it but if it does, call us asap and don't agree to anything until we get there." Heero told them.

Duo nodded his agreement, "If they try to get you to agree or sign to anything by force I will remind them who they are dealing with."

"Hell, bullshit as much legal terms as you can until we get there." Heero added.

"Keep us on the phone if you need to." Duo said, "If anything we'll get there as quick as we can."

"Why do I feel like there's a story behind the legal terms one?" Hitoshi asked.

"Nita's mom is a lawyer. I had learned a lot in the span of six years." Heero told him. Duo glanced over at him curiously but didn't say anything.

"I was a curious baby and Mrs. Tsurugi would sometimes work on cases from home if Mr. Tsurugi was at work." Heero explained.

Duo nodded in understanding.

Hitoshi was curious, "What was Mr. Tsurugi's job?"

"He's a scientist." Heero said.

Duo rolled to a stop outside the school and rolled down the window when he saw the bully and his parents outside the school, "Let us know if you need anything." He said to the boys.

"We will." The boys said, getting unbuckled. Apparently Gervasi and Calleigh had arrived just after they did because Calleigh's gentle knocking could be heard on Heero's side.

Duo rolled the window down, "Hey boys."

"Morning you two." Heero said.

"Good Morning." Gervasi greeted.

"Morning Duo. Morning Heero, are you feeling better?" Calleigh asked.

"I am, thank you for asking." Heero told him.

"Were you filled in one what to do today if the bullies start up?" Duo asked them.

They both nodded.

"There's going to be an undercover agent with us at school today in case the bullies try something." Gervasi explained.

"If the bullies do try something and the agent isn't available for whatever reason, we call you guys right away and that we have permission to use force to keep ourselves safe if we need to." Calleigh chimed in.

Duo nodded, "Yep. You better get inside before the bell rings."

"We will, have a good day at work." Gervasi said as Hitoshi and Ken got out of the car with their things. The four of them then made their way into the school, making sure to stick close together when they walked past the bully and his parents. Duo waited until they were inside before he drove away.

"Think they're going to be okay?" Heero asked.

"Yeah, they'll be fine." Duo said.

Heero sighed, "I hope so."

"Don't worry, 'Ro. They'll be fine. They're strong and can take care of themselves."

"I know. It's just that I can't help but worry about Hitoshi. Those left over OZ assholes had done a bit of a number on him when I had found him and god only knows what J even has done since the files about it are destroyed."

Duo reached over and squeezed his hand, "He's got friends that will stick by him through anything and he's got one hell of an older brother who will protect him at all costs."

Heero chuckled, "Make that older brothers. You guys are family too you know."

Duo grinned, "Damn straight we are. You know we'll do anything to protect him and the others."

"I know. Still means I can't be worried though when I'm technically flying in the dark." Heero told him.

"He'll be fine. I made sure that more than one agent was placed at the school. I only told them there was one to help them calm down." Duo replied.

"Do I even want to know how many you placed at the school or am I better off not knowing like the time you messed with the showers at work?" Heero asked.

Duo glanced at him, grin still firmly in place, "Probably better off not knowing."

"Oh god it's Henderson and the glitter showers all over again." Heero said.

Duo laughed but didn't deny anything.

Heero leaned back in his seat, "Think there's a Preventers office in the city that Nita's in?"

"We can check when we get to the office." Duo answered, "If not I'm sure Une won't be opposed to opening one if it means keeping her best agents in the agency."

"Well it wouldn't just be keeping us in the agency." Heero started, "Say the boys do decide that they want to go to Natsurane high. Quatre said that it's a six hour drive from here to Kaweneshi. That means we're basically looking at what could amount to a twenty four hour drive just to take them to school, go to work, pick them up after work, and head back home if we are to stay here in Brimmond everyday."

"Pretty sure Quatre has already started to look at houses." Duo told him.

"You mean Kaweneshi is one of the few cities his family doesn't keep a house in?" Heero asked.

"I meant for everyone else. Pretty sure Quat has a house in almost every city on Earth." Duo snorted.

"Oh damn it he's going to go overboard again." Heero said.

Duo snickered, "I'm sure we can convince him to not go overboard."

"It took a month to convince him no big fancy houses." Heero reminded him.

"Then we better get to work on him right away." Duo said as they pulled into the garage under the Preventers building.

Maybe Trowa already has." Heero said.

"Or he's adding fuel to the fire and giving Quat suggestions just for his own amusement." Duo muttered.

"Trowa no." Heero groaned.

"You know Tro." Duo said as he parked, "If it amuses him, he'll add to the chaos."

"And he wonders why I lock the moped." Heero grumbled. Duo laughed as he climbed out of the car and grabbed his laptop bag from the trunk. Heero got out and grabbed his bag, stretching his legs out.

Duo locked the car and headed into the building towards his office, "Is Quat even in today or is he at the WEI branch?"

Heero shrugged, "I'm not sure. Parts of yesterday are a bit of a blur right now."

Duo frowned, "Sorry, I should have waited until you were home to give you the info."

"Yesterday would've probably still be a blur in parts no matter where it happened." Heero told him. Duo nodded as they reached the main lobby and showed their badges to bypass security.

"I think I own a cat now out of all of this." Heero said after they bypassed security.

"Yes, you do. Or at least a cat owns you now." Duo grinned.

"Well Hitoshi did say that we were going to adopt him if the neighbor didn't." Heero told him.

Duo nodded, "That's what he told me. He's a very cute kitten."

"Whose a very cute kitten?" Trowa asked as he appeared behind them.

"The neighborhood stray kitten who has been named Dibby." Heero answered.

"You have a neighborhood stray kitten and didn't invite me around to see it?" Trowa asked with a fake pout, "I'm wounded Heero, wounded I tell you!"

"My neighbor next door usually takes care of him and lets him sleep there when the weather changes. She wasn't home yesterday so Dibby rode out the rain with us." Heero explained.

"I'm sure 'Ro will let you come over to see Dibby." Duo told him in amusement.

Trowa nodded, "Good. Now, Quatre has his eyes set on a few five bedroom houses."

Heero groaned, "None of us need a five bedroom house. Also I know Duo took pictures of Dibby."

"Five bedrooms? Smaller than last time." Duo mused, "And I did take pictures!" He pulled out his phone and pulled up the pictures so Trowa could coo over how cute Dibby was.

"I just want something that's like the house I already have." Heero stated.

"Tell Quat that." Duo told him, "Tell him the limits and make sure he abides to them."

"This is going to call for coffee." Heero said.

Duo snickered and took his phone back from Trowa, "Just tell him what you want. I'm going to go see if I can find any houses in the area that I like and not so subtly send those to him."

"I'm getting coffee first then dropping by his office." Heero said.

"Have fun." Duo and Trowa said at the same time before heading towards their offices. Heero stopped by the break room, grabbing a coffee then going to Quatre's office.

Quatre motioned for him to come in as he finished up a call. When he was done he smiled at Heero, "Good morning Heero, how are you?"

"I'm better than I was yesterday. Pretty sure I own a kitten now." Heero said, sitting in the chair in front of Quatre's desk.

"Oh?" Quatre said, "The one that guards your driveway?"

Heero nodded, "Yes the one that guards the driveway. And my front door."

Quatre let out a soft laugh, "Please, sit down. What brings you here?"

"Trowa says that you're looking at houses." Heero said.

Quatre nodded, "I am. I found several that would suit our needs."

"Quatre you know that I don't need a five bedroom house." Heero told him.

"But what if you have guests that all want or need to stay over at the same time?" Quatre asked him.

Heero tried not to facepalm, "Quatre, you and the others are pretty much the only guests that Hitoshi and I have over, with the exception of Dibby but it's looking like he may be living with us for good."

"That could change though!" Quatre told him, "What if you find your sibling and they need a place to stay?"

"Then one extra spare bedroom would be just fine in the case of Masato." Heero said.

Quatre pouted at him, "Fine."

Heero took a sip of his coffee, "Look how about this? Let's see how the situation turns out first in the case regarding my brother. If it turns out that I'll need a house with more space then you can pick out one that has more space."

Quatre's pout instantly turned into a grin, "Deal!"

"Nothing too overly fancy though." Heero told him.

"Of course." Quatre nodded.

Heero thought for a moment, "I guess something pet friendly though since it looks like Hitoshi and I are keeping Dibby."

"And something close to the school." Quatre responded.

Heero nodded, "It would be best to figure out the layout of the city first. And see if the boys do decide on the school."

Quatre grinned and held up a map of the city with certain areas, such as the school the boys were considering, circled.

"Quatre did you even sleep last night?" Heero asked.

"I did, yes! Thank you for asking!" Quatre beamed at him.

"There is no way you had time to do all of that after work and before bed." Heero said, looking over the map.

"If course not! I hired a realtor." Quatre informed him.

Heero facepalmed, "Of course you would."

Quatre gave a look of innocence.

Heero took another sip of his coffee, "You are way too prepared for this."

"I'm prepared for everything, Heero." Quatre said.

"Quatre it hasn't been a whole day yet." Heero pointed out.

"Your point?" Quatre asked.

"My point is that you might be having a bit too much fun with this." Heero said.

"I don't know what you're talking about." Quatre told him.

Heero just gave him a look. Quatre just grinned.

"Alright, if you're so prepared then you would know if there's a preventers office in Kaweneshi or not." Heero said.

"I spoke to Une about that this morning." Quatre told him, "There is a small office there and Une wants to expand it."

"How small are we talking?" Heero asked then saw something on the map, "Also, what's this here labeled DPA?"

"Very small. They have maybe ten agents. And DPA is an organization Une is considering teaming up with. They are like the Preventers but they have different responsibilities. Une is still figuring it out but that's where it's located." Quatre informed him.

"And let me guess, if we do just so happen to transfer out to that small office, she would like for us to be there with her if she just so happens to arrange a meeting with the head of the DPA." Heero said.

Quatre nodded, "She also said something about retraining the agents at the other branch."

"Are they that bad?" Heero asked.

"Apparently." Quatre sighed.

Heero pinched the bridge of his nose, "Une better know that we aren't responsible if they die during training."

Quatre snickered, "Oh I'm sure she knows."

"Good." Heero stated.

Quatre glanced at the clock and made a face, "I unfortunately have another phone conference. See you at lunch?"

Heero nodded, "Yes. I actually need to make a quick stop by Sally's office to talk about finding my brother."

"See you later." Quatre told him.

"See you." Heero said, getting up with his coffee and leaving Quatre's office so he could head to Sally's.

"Hello Heero." Sally greeted as he entered, "What brings you by here?"

"Duo gave me a suggestion in regards of looking for my brother last night and I was wondering if you could help me with it." Heero explained.

"If course. What was the suggestion?" Sally asked him.

Heero took a seat, "Duo suggested putting my DNA in the system to try to find my older brother."

Sally nodded, "If his DNA is also in the system then it could work."

"I'm hoping it's not in there for criminal reasons." Heero said.

Sally chuckled, "Don't worry about that. It's a fairly quick procedure. All I'd need is a small blood sample and then I can put it in."

"Would now be a good time to get a sample?" Heero asked. Sally nodded and reached into a drawer to pull out gloves, a needle, and a vial.

Heero sat down his coffee again, rolling up one of his jacket sleeves.

"Ready?" Sally asked as she prepped Heero's arm.

"I'm ready." Heero told her.

Sally quickly got a sample of blood and then placed a bandaid on Heero's arm, "All done."

"Thanks. I really appreciate this." Heero said, rolling his sleeve back down.

"No problem." Sally told him, "I'll get this put in and let you know if any results pop up."

"Thank you. Now to head back to my office before Une notices I haven't been in it yet." Heero said.

Sally chuckled and waved bye as she took Heero's sample to start the process of putting it in the system.

Heero collected his coffee and made his way to his office so he could start working. Inside Heero's office was Wufei. He had his laptop out along with a few case files.

"I'm guessing some of the other agents were starting to bother you?" Heero asked as a greeting, getting set up at his desk.

"Something like that." Wufei agreed as he looked over at Heero, "I see you're still in one piece."

"Physically, yes. Mentally is still a bit up for debate." Heero told him, turning on his own laptop.

"Are any of us mentally in one piece?" Wufei snorted.

"Not really but none of you were thrown a great distance by their gundam." Heero commented.

"None of us were crazy enough to self destruct. Well... Maxwell and Winner were but Winner managed to get out and Maxwell's self destruct failed to activate..." Wufei mused.

"Quatre said that Sandrock opened the cockpit while the countdown was happening and told him to get out." Heero informed.

"Well the Gundams did seem to have a mind of their own." Wufei snorted.

"They kind of did actually." Heero told him, "I got bored one day after the war and the Mariemaia incident so I decided to look over the blueprints for our gundams. It turned out that they had AI systems."

"Oh?" Wufei asked, "Interesting."

Heero nodded, "I'm not sure where the AIs went after the suits got messed up so I'm not sure if they're still around or not."

"I think Maxwell said something about copying their systems." Wufei told him.

"Remind me to ask him at lunch then. I kind of miss Wing." Heero said.

Wufei nodded and went back to the case he was working on. Heero started to work, going back to the case files he was looking over yesterday but didn't get to finish.

Wufei eventually went back to his office and finished his work there. Heero kept working till lunch came around, finishing the files from yesterday and some of the files from today.

By the time that Heero made it to the cafeteria Duo, Trowa, and Wufei were already there with Quatre arriving soon after. Heero sat down next to Trowa after he had grabbed his lunch for the day.

"How'd the talk go?" Duo asked Heero as Quatre went to grab his lunch.

"We made a deal. We're going to see how the situation in the case of finding my brother turns out first. If it is revealed that I'll need a house with more space then Quatre can pick out one that has more space." Heero explained.

Duo nodded, "Did you see Sally?"

"I did. She's going to let me know if any results pop up." Heero told him.

"Cool." Duo grinned at him before Trowa placed a small bag next to Heero.

"Cat toys to keep Dibby busy so he doesn't tear up your furniture." Trowa informed him.

"I don't think Dibby is going to tear up the furniture. Though I should see if I can find his kitty tent." Heero said.

Trowa shrugged, "You never know."

"I woke up to him using my face for his biscuit making practice." Heero stated.

Trowa laughed while Duo snorted.

"He was just purring away too."

"I'm sure he was." Trowa grinned.

"Who was purring?" Wufei asked as he and Quatre sat down.

"Dibby, the neighborhood stray kitten who I believe has adopted Hitoshi and I." Heero answered.

"Ahh." Wufei hummed.

"Any news from the boys?" Quatre asked.

Heero shook his head, "No not yet. I'm taking that a good sign."

Duo nodded, "I got an update from one of the agents watching them they're fine. Other than a few words and nasty looks the bullies haven't tried anything."

"That's a relief." Quatre said.

"So I don't have to threaten any of the bullies with my gun then." Heero said.

"No Heero. No threatening children with your gun." Quatre told him.

"I won't have to as long as they leave the boys alone." Heero argued.

"'Ro, you could get in trouble if you do that." Duo told him.

"Not if I am not caught." Heero said, taking a bite of his sandwich. Wufei rolled his eyes and bit into his chicken sandwich.

"But if you threaten them with a gun then you've got to go all the way." Trowa told him, "You gotta go big!"

"Bold of you to assume that I wouldn't go big Trowa." Heero commented.

"Bigger than big!" Trowa grinned, "You'll need machine guns and missiles and-"

"Trowa no." Quatre interrupted.

"At least Trowa isn't threatening to pee on the Alamo." Heero stated.

"You could do that too." Trowa grinned.

"Texas will make you regret peeing on the Alamo." Heero deadpanned.

Trowa shrugged, "I'll make them regret making me regret peeing on the Alamo."

Heero snorted, "Trowa no."

Trowa just smirked and turned to his food.

Heero looked at Duo, "Wufei said you said something about copying our gundams' systems. Is that true?"

Duo nodded, "I did. Right after the final battle. Why?"

"Got bored one day after both the war and the Mariemaia incident and looked over gundam blueprints. Our gundams had AI systems." Heero told him.

"Yeah I know. Sandrock had Quat leave before self destructing." Duo said, "And Scythe could sometimes attack before I could even move."

"Do you think the AI systems got copied over when you copied the systems over?" Heero asked.

"I can check. You miss Wing?" Duo asked.

Heero nodded, "I do, yeah."

"I'll check tonight. It shouldn't take too long to go through the code to see if there is an AI system in it." Duo told him.

"Alright." Heero said, taking another bite of his sandwich.

Duo bit into his food as his phone beeped. He looked at it and swallowed his food before grinning and turning it so they all could see the group photo Ken had sent him, "Looks like they're having a good day."

Heero smiled, "That's good." He said, looking at the photo. The photo showed that the boys were at lunch themselves, all of their trays being a mix and match of things though it looked like that Hitoshi was trying to steal a French fry from Bohai who was trying to read his book.

"They deserve to have some fun." Trowa said, "I was thinking of taking them to the circus this weekend since it's going to be in town."

"Won't you be working it this weekend?" Heero asked, reaching for his drink.

"Yep." Trowa nodded.

"I hope things go well." Heero said.

"You should come." Trowa said, "Gervasi is going to participate this time."

Heero blinked at that, "Isn't his shoulder still healing?"

"Yeah, he won't be doing anything that would bother it." Trowa said, "He's going to be up on the tightrope."

"Ah." Heero hummed.

"Troy decided he wants to dress up as a clown this time." Trowa smiled softly.

"What did he dress up the last time he got to help out with the circus?" Heero asked.

"A knife thrower like Cathy." Trowa grinned.

"I want to be surprised by that but for some reason I'm not." Heero told him.

Trowa laughed, "He's really looking forward to seeing Cathy again."

"I bet. He doesn't really get to see her unless it's the weekend and she's free and in town." Heero said.

Trowa nodded, "They talk on the phone every day though."

Heero took a sip of his drink, "That's good. He's not running up the phone bill though is he?"

"No and if he did, I wouldn't mind." Trowa said before popping a grape into his mouth.

Heero shook his head, smiling some as he went back to his lunch. The rest of lunch passed quickly and then it was back to work. Heero worked on the rest of his files, keeping an ear out for either his brother or the results.

Normally it would take a few days for the results to come in even after Sally had put a rush on it, but this time, a result came up as Sally was packing up for the day. She looked it over and then called Heero down to her office. Heero had finished packing up his stuff when Sally called him down to her office. He did a quick double check to make sure he had everything before heading down to her office.

Sally motioned for him to sit before she began speaking, "Normally, it would take a few days for any results to come in." She told him, "However one came in for you. You have a brother who is in the police force which is why the results came in so fast and since he's listed the computer was able to pull data from his files about the rest of your family." Sally said as she held out a folder for him to take.

Heero accepted the folder, opening it, "Masato became a police officer? I want to be surprised at that but at the same time I'm not."

Sally smiled softly, "There's information about the rest of your family as well."

Heero looked through the folder, seeing that Masato had indeed become a police officer who went between regular cases and missing persons reports (Heero vaguely wondered if he was the reason for the second part). He also saw that both of his grandparents were alive and well, the two of them now retired from their respective jobs. He blinked when he got to two other parts of the folder, seeing two unfamiliar names, "That's new.."

"Why don't you take it home and look over it?" Sally suggested, "There should be contact information in there as well."

Heero closed the folder, "Thanks again for this Sally. I owe you one." He told her.

"It's no problem." Sally told him, "Now shoo. Go home and look that over."

"I got to pick Hitoshi up first." Heero said, getting his stuff and getting up from his seat.

"Then go." Sally said, "I'm sure he'll be eager to hear about this."

"What teenager wouldn't be eager about gaining three brothers on top of having a kitten?" Heero asked.

Sally laughed and shooed him from her office as she finished packing to go home for the day. Heero left her office, taking another look at the folder. When he saw what city was listed as his family's current residence, he made a quick detour to Quatre's office.

Quatre was going through business reports when Heero walked in and looked up startled, "Heero? Is everything okay?"

"I am about 99.9% sure that the universe is conspiring against me in regards to my future home." Heero said, holding up the folder he had gotten from Sally for Quatre to see, "The results came in."

"May I?" Quatre asked as he held out a hand for the folder. Heero nodded, handing the folder to Quatre.

Quatre took the folder and looked through it, "Oh wow. I didn't expect the results to come back so fast."

"They usually don't but Masato just so happens to be in the police force which is why the results came in as fast as they did." Heero explained.

Quatre nodded, "They're in the same city as your friend."

"I think the universe is taunting me with that part." Heero said.

"Maybe it's a sign that you should go there." Quatre told him.

"If it is one then the universe has a weird way of showing it." Heero stated.

Quatre chuckled, "So I take it, you're going to go there?"

"Seems like it. Especially since the school the boys seemed interested is there." Heero told him.

Quatre nodded, "Just tell me a date and time and I can have the house ready for all of us to stay."

"I would suggest this weekend but I know the boys are going to want to go to the circus since it'll be in town." Heero said.

Quatre nodded, "What about next weekend?"

Heero thought for a moment, "That could work. Gives us a chance to look for both Masato and Nita and maybe we could get a tour of the school that Monday for the boys."

Quatre nodded, "I'll set it up. Now, we should go pick up the boys before they think we forgot them."

"The boys know we would never forget them." Heero told him, getting the folder back from Quatre.

Quatre quickly packed up his things and walked out with Heero, "True but they'll tease us about it."

Heero shook his head, "That's their job as a younger sibling."

"Oh I know." Quatre grinned at him.

Heero chuckled softly.

"Come on. Let's go get them." Quatre said as they entered the garage.

"Think they had a good day today?" Heero asked as they headed to their respective vehicles.

"It seems like it. I'm sure we would have heard if they hadn't." Quatre replied as he unlocked his car.

"True. Still can't help but worry though." Heero said, taking his keys out of his pocket.

"We'll find out soon enough." Quatre said. He looked around and saw that Duo, Trowa, and Wufei's vehicles were already gone, "Looks like the others left without us."

"Not too surprised with Duo. I think we're still waiting for Une to assign us late night shifts after what happened yesterday." Heero said, unlocking his truck.

Quatre shook his head, "And I'm sure Duo thinks he can work all the late shifts."

"His exact words this morning was 'I'll work both shifts'" Heero told him.

"Of course he said that." Quatre snorted, "We'll just have to make sure he doesn't. I'll see you there." Quatre said with a wave as he got into his car.

"Might have to strap him down for that." Heero said, getting into his truck once his stuff was put in the back seat.

Quatre gave another wave as he pulled out of his spot and drove away. Heero waved back before starting his truck and going to pick up Hitoshi.

Chapter Text

By the time they arrived at the school the boys were gathered around the others as they found out how the day had gone. Quatre got out to join them, "What'd I miss?"

Heero joined them after he parked his truck.

"Nothing too much." Calleigh said.

Quatre wrapped an arm around him, "How was your day? Duo showed us the picture of all of you at lunch."

"It was good. Gym just about turned into an all out dodgeball massacre." Calleigh told him.

"Sounds like fun." Duo grinned, "I heard we all might be taking a trip in a couple of weeks."

Quatre nodded, "We are, if no one has any objections. It'll be a chance to check out the school the kids like and a chance to check out the city."

"Does that mean we get to miss a day of our school?" Hitoshi asked.

"It does, yes." Heero answered, gently rubbing Hitoshi's head.

"I believe this means the results came back?" Wufei asked Heero.

Heero nodded, "They did. Masato's a cop over in the same city that Nita's in."

Wufei nodded his understanding, "Congratulations on finding them."

"That's great man!" Duo cheered.

Hitoshi blinked, "What results?"

"Sally ran my DNA through the system and the results found our family. You now have three more brothers and two grandparents." Heero told him.

"Congrats." Trowa told him, "We should get going. It looks like it's going to rain again."

"Good thing we let Dibby stay in today." Heero said. Hitoshi was trying to process suddenly having four brothers now instead of one.

Duo nodded as he looked up at the sky, "Yeah, looks like it might storm. We'll see you guys tomorrow!" He called as he ushered Ken to the car.

Quatre did the same and waved over his shoulder.

"See you." Trowa said as he guided Gervasi and Troy to the car.

"Enjoy your evening." Wufei said.

"See you guys tomorrow. Stay safe." Heero said, gently ushering Hitoshi to the truck so the two could go get food. With that they all went their separate ways for the night.

It was the week after the circus being in town and Heero was in his office trying to get some work done, using it as a distraction.

Ever since he had been given the results regarding Masato, he had been a bit distracted with the newfound ability of being able to contact his brother. Though every time he had dialed in the number, he kept finding himself unable to press the call button.

Duo leaned against the doorway and watched Heero for a minute before knocking on the wall to get his friend's attention. Heero had been distracted all week and they all knew why. "Call him, 'Ro."

Heero sighed, moving the files away from himself, "Oh damn it, not you too."

"I'm not going to bug you about it, I'm just saying to call him." Duo said, "You've been distracted ever since you got the results. Quatre has even threatened to move up the trip if you can't focus."

Heero was about to say that the blond wouldn't but he thought about it and knew that Quatre most likely would, "If it was that simple Duo, I would've done it by now but it's not."

Duo walked into the room and pulled a chair over, "How is it not simple?"

Heero took out the folder, gently taking out the part pertaining to Masato. He circled something on the relative listing on the paper then handed it to Duo. Circled in blue ink read: 'Adin Hiroshi Lowe- younger brother. Missing, presumed dead.'

Duo took the paper and looked it over, "Presumed dead. Not dead, just presumed, 'Ro. I know for a fact that you're alive. You're far too stubborn to die." He sighed and ran his fingers through his bangs, "Look, 'Ro... if there was any chance that Solo was alive and I found out I would call him or go find him right away, pretty sure Masato would do the same if he knew that you're alive."

"It's been 12 years Duo." Heero pointed out, "Say I do call him. What's to keep him from thinking that someone is messing with him? Or what if he doesn't believe me and ends up blocking my number before I could explain everything? It would be easier to call him once in Kaweneshi so that way I can use myself as proof to show him that it's not some cruel sick joke."

"True. Or you can have Sally forward the results to the police station where he works with proof that you're alive." Duo suggested with a shrug, "We just want you to be happy."

Heero sighed, "I know, it's just something this big needs to be handled as a face to face conversation, not a call over the phone."

Duo shrugged. It was Heero's choice, "Alright. Just know that Quatre is probably gonna come up here and try to get you to call." He glanced at the time, "I gotta go. Got a meeting to get to."

"Pay attention in the meeting this time. I think Sally's start to expect that we can momentarily stop our pulses." Heero told him, "Also let me know if you made any progress about finding the AI systems."

Duo just grinned at him as he stood and walked towards the door, "Where's the fun in that? And I'll let you know tonight." He said before leaving the office.

Heero shook his head, going back to work as he knew it was only a matter of time before someone else came into his office. Quatre came in less than a minute after Duo had left and didn't bother to knock when he entered the office. He sat in Duo's vacated chair and stared at Heero.

"I have been warned that you would be arriving." Heero said, not bothering to look up as if he just knew that it was the blond pilot and not Trowa or Wufei.

"So you know what I'm here about then." Quatre stated, "Good. I'll jump straight to the point. You need to call your brother."

"As I have told the one before you, if it was that simple I would have done so by now." Heero told him.

"It is that simple, Heero. I'm aware that it has you marked as presumed dead but all you have to do is contact him." Quatre told him.

"It has been 12 years. There is a chance you could think that it is someone messing with him or he could end up not believing me and blocking my number before I could explain everything. It would be easier to contact him once in the city so I can show up as proof in case he thinks someone is playing a cruel sick joke on him." Heero argued.

Quatre gave a small growl of frustration, "I highly doubt he'd block the number. Seeing as how he's a cop he'd probably trace it back to you." He leaned over and picked up the paper that had the number on it, "Call or I will."

Heero looked up, "You will not. This is delicate Quatre and given the nature of it, this is something that needs to be done face to face and not over the phone."

"Are you saying I can't be delicate?" Quatre asked raising an eyebrow at him.

"I'm saying this needs to be handled a certain way. Preferably one that won't leave my brother distracted if he is working today." Heero told him.

"You mean like how you've been distracted? Heero what if you were out in the field right now? Would you be able to focus?" Quatre asked him.

"You know I would be able to focus." Heero answered him.

Quatre eyed him, "We leave in the morning. I've already cleared it with the school and with Une. Be ready to leave by sun up."

Heero sat down his pen, "Quatre it's a six hour drive from Brimmond to Kaweneshi and there is the issue that I am now responsible for a kitten."

"I'm well aware. That's why we're leaving early, unless you want to leave even earlier?" Quatre asked, "And they have travel equipment for kittens. Trowa's already picked some up."

"I am telling Rashid that you have gone rouge." Heero stated.

Quatre just smirked at him and left the office with a wave of his hand. Heero closed the door to his office and locked it, trying to buy himself some time to both calm down and not be invaded.

He took out his wallet and, with great care, took out a picture from it. It was a picture of him and Suzie as kids, one of the last few things he had of his life before the war that he had tucked away as not to lose it. He wasn't sure how much time he had but he was going to spend it talking to the picture before he was interrupted.

A few hours later Trowa knocked on the door and waited for Heero to unlock it, "I know you're in there Heero. It's time for lunch."

"Heero's not here right now, he's in memory town. Please leave a message." Came the reply from the other side of the door.

Trowa rolled his eyes and picked the lock open before entering the room, "I have orders from Quatre to drag you to the cafeteria if you don't come willingly."

"I'm not eating in the cafeteria today." Heero said, not looking up from the picture in his hand.

"Then I have orders to call the others up here to eat." Trowa deadpanned.

"Never said I was eating in my office." Heero stated.

Trowa gave him a look, "Do you plan on eating at all or were you going to sneak out while no one was looking?"

"I plan on eating, just not here." Heero replied.

Trowa tilted his head and eyed Heero for a minute before glancing at the clock, "I can give you a two minute head start before the others realize that you've left."

"Thank you." Heero said, gently placing the picture back in his wallet as he got up.

"Yep." Trowa said as he turned to leave, "Have fun."

"I'll try." Heero told him, grabbing his phone and keys.

Trowa made his way down the hall and towards the cafeteria, giving Heero plenty of time to leave. Heero quickly made his way to the elevator so he could go to his truck.

Duo gave Trowa a look as soon as the other male entered the room but didn't say anything. They both knew that Heero needed some space. Heero safely made it to his truck and left the garage. He was going to enjoy a couple of patty melts for his lunch and have himself some peace and quiet.

Quatre wasn't happy that Heero had snuck off or that Trowa had helped him but there was nothing he could do about it. Heero came back when lunch was over, his stomach full. He was still upset but not as much as he was when he left. Quatre was kept away with meetings and phone calls though Trowa and Wufei did pop in from time to time while Duo sat through the rest of, in his opinion, very boring, meeting.

Heero did whatever work he could, taking breaks now and then when one of his pens broke.

Trowa just so happened to poke his head into the office when the pen broke and arched an eyebrow, "Wanna go to the gym and blow off steam?"

"Depends. Is there a chance of us getting bothered while at the gym to blow off steam?" Heero asked.

"Nope, I reserved the gym for the next few hours." Trowa told him, "Duo is going to pick up Hitoshi, Gervasi, and Troy and help them start packing for the trip."

Heero thought for a few minutes, "Then the answer is yes."

"I thought you'd say yes." Trowa said knowingly.

Heero got up, putting away whatever work that he had left. Trowa waited for him at the door. Heero grabbed his stuff and headed over to the door. Trowa moved out of his way and walked with him down to the gym.

Heero didn't say anything on the way to the gym. Once in the gym Trowa headed to the locker room to change and then headed to the gym floor to stretch.

Heero changed into his spare work out clothes once he got into the locker room, wrapping his hands so he could go a few rounds with the punching bag.

Trowa gave him space to do as he wanted to release the stress that had built up as he went through his own workout. Heero slipped in his earbuds, turning on his workout playlist and going to town on the poor punching bag.

When Trowa had invited Heero down to the gym he had meant for them to spar but Heero punching the sand out of the punching bag worked too.

The punching bag had started to leak almost an hour into Heero punching it. Heero was either more stressed than he let on or the punching bag was really worn out. Trowa stopped him after a while so he could hang up a new bag. Heero took that moment to take a break, panting slightly to catch his breath.

Trowa threw him a water bottle, "How are your knuckles?"

Heero caught the water bottle, gently flexing his knuckles, "Sore but probably would be worse if I didn't double wrap them before I started."

Trowa nodded as he took down the old punching bag and hung the new one in its place, "Don't overdo it. We've got a long drive tomorrow."

"Please don't remind me." Heero said a bit to quickly before downing half of the water bottle.

"Do you not want to go tomorrow?" Trowa asked.

Heero shook his head, "I do but not when it's now being used to force me to talk to my brother when I have no idea what the hell I'm going to say to him. And that's not even counting whatever I'm supposed to say to Nita when I do see her."

"Do you want me to talk to Quatre and move the trip back to the weekend?"

"We both know he's at that point where he won't do it, especially since he already got it cleared. I did Rashid that he went rogue though."

Trowa frowned, "Heero, if you aren't ready then we don't have to go tomorrow."

Heero finished what was left of the water bottle, choosing not to answer at the moment. Trowa nodded as if he had expected silence and tapped the bag to let Heero know it was ready before moving away to get back to his own workout.

Heero put the now empty water bottle away, checking the wrappings on his hands before going back to work on the bag.

Trowa let him go at it for the next couple of hours before he called a stop, "We need to clean up and go pick up the boys before Duo teaches them how to do some of his more dangerous pranks."

"It's already too late for Ken at this point." Heero said, gently flexing his fingers again. The new bag looked worse for wear now.

Trowa snorted, "Come on. Let's shower and head home." He said as he headed for the locker room.

Heero followed him, unwrapping his hands along the way. Trowa grabbed a towel and his clothes before climbing into one of the shower stalls. The warm water quickly washed away the sweat that had built up. Heero threw the bandages into the trash and did the same, hissing softly as the water made contact with his knuckles.

Trowa took his time but eventually got out and dried off before dressing. He put his dirty clothes in his gym bag to wash later and then waited for Heero. Heero came out a bit later, towel wrapped around his waist as he checked out his knuckles which were looking a bit on the red side.

Trowa looked up from his phone, "Duo is asking if you want to stay over for dinner."

"Sure. He said he would let me know tonight about if he found the AI systems or not." Heero said.

Trowa nodded and texted Duo back, "Ready to go?"

"Yeah." Heero said, slipping on the last of his clothes and putting his workout clothes in his own gym bag to deal with later.

"Good because apparently Hitoshi just remembered that Duo said he could punch him in the gut." Trowa told him.

Heero chuckled, "So expect to see Duo on the ground when we get there, got it."

Trowa nodded with a grin as he shouldered his bag and led the way out. Heero followed him, in a slightly better mood than he was a few hours ago.

"I was serious about what I said earlier. If you want me to talk to Quatre, I will." Trowa told him.

"I know." Heero said, "I also know that Quatre's not going to change his mind on this."

"We could always just knock him out." Trowa suggested, only half joking.

"That only delays it by a day." Heero pointed out.

Trowa shrugged, "Gives you more time to prepare though."

"A day's not much." Heeor argued.

"It can be, even if it's just to center yourself." Trowa said.

Heero shrugged, "I don't think it'll help."

"Whatever you want to do, Heero." Trowa told him.

"I'll think about it." Heero stated.

Trowa nodded as they entered the garage, "That's all I ask. See you at Duo's house."

"See ya." Heero said, heading over to his truck.

Trowa got in his car after throwing his gym bag in the trunk. He drove off in the direction of Duo's house. Heero put his stuff in his truck then got in it, starting it and heading to Duo's place.

Trowa parked on the street outside of Duo's house and made his way up to the door. He didn't bother knocking and strolled right in.

Heero parked behind Trowa's car, wondering what to expect when he got inside.

Trowa walked in just in time to see the kids dogpile on Duo who went down with a startled shout. Heero shook his head, having heard the shout as he got to the door.

"Do you think we should help?" Trowa asked.

"Let's see why they dogpiled on him first and decide from there." Heero said.

Trowa nodded and picked up Troy who was on top of the pile, "What'd Duo do?" He asked.

"He forgot to buy dessert." Troy said.

"He forgot to buy dessert? Shame on him." Trowa told him as he let Troy rejoin the others, "How dare you not buy these sweet innocent children their dessert?"

"That is a crime right there." Heero said, shaking his head.

"Perhaps we should arrest him." Trowa teased.

"Or better yet, the kids could arrest him." Heero added.

Trowa nodded, "Do you have any cuffs on you?"

Duo glared up at them from between the multiple bodies on him.

"I might. Let me check my bag." Heero said.

"Don't you dare Yuy!" Came Duo's muffled voice.

Heero cupped an ear, "What was that Duo? I couldn't hear you."

Duo glared at them harder.

"I think he wants you to hurry." Trowa told him.

"That's what I thought he said." Heero said, looking through his bag.

"Don't you dare Yuy! Dammit I said no!" Duo tried to shout.

"Sorry Duo, we can't hear you." Trowa told him.

"What Trowa said." Heero said, taking out a pair of handcuffs.

Trowa snickered, "Who wants to arrest Duo?" He asked the group. All the kids hands went up at that question.

"We have one pair of cuffs and four of you." Trowa mused as Duo tried to slip out from under the kids, "Uh-oh looks like your prisoner is trying to escape."

The kids piled onto Duo more, trying to keep him from escaping.

Trowa smiled at the sight as Duo struggled to get up, though not enough to actually escape the kids grasps.

"You know, he promised Hitoshi a punch to the gut. He should be the one to arrest Duo." Heero said.

Trowa hummed and nodded, "Sounds like a plan. Alright Hitoshi he's all yours."

"Handcuffs please." Hitoshi said, holding out his hand. Heero chuckled, giving the handcuffs to his brother.

Duo struggled to get away but with the pile of teens still on him he wasn't having much luck.

Trowa had his phone out, recording the entire thing. Heero took a few pictures as Hitoshi proceeded to arrest Duo for forgetting to buy dessert.

"Hey stop that you brat!" Duo exclaimed as Hitosho handcuffed him.

"You should've let him punch you in the gut Duo." Heero said.

"It's not my fault he forgot to!" Duo huffed as he sat up, the cuffs quickly opening and falling to the floor.

"Oh look, the prisoner escaped his cuffs. Who wants to arrest him next?" Trowa grinned. Troy picked up the handcuffs, eying Duo.

"Don't even think about it." Duo glared at the kid, though there was no anger in it.

"Maybe we should find the cuffs you can't break out of." Trowa mused.

"Barton I will kill you." Duo threatened as he tried to move away from the group of teens.

"Last I check, murder is illegal." Heero said.

"You must face your punishment." Ken stated.

"Nooooo!" Duo cried dramatically as he tried to scoot away. The kids descended upon him.

"Aaarg!" Duo cried as the kids tackled him to the floor again. Heero chuckled, taking another picture.

Trowa smirked as he watched the kids have fun as they ganged up on Duo.

Heero looked at Trowa, "Looks like we're on food duty then."

Trowa nodded, "So it seems."

Heero made his way to the kitchen to get dinner started since Duo was down for the count.

Trowa followed and looked at what Duo had pulled out to cook, "Looks like he had already started prepping."

Heero nodded then called out to Duo, "Duo what were you planning on for dinner?"

"Aaahhh!" Came the response, "Hey stop that you little monsters!"

Trowa snorted, "I'm not sure if he heard you."

"I'm going to momentarily save him." Heero said.

Trowa nodded and started pulling out pots and pans. Heero ventured back into the living room.

Duo was handcuffed again but this time the kids weren't giving him a chance to escape as they all proceeded to tickle him.

"Alright kids, stand down for three minutes." Heero told them. Duo panted as the kids stopped their tickle torture and took the opportunity to slip out of the cuffs.

"Alright Duo, what were you planning for dinner?" Heero asked.

"I'll tell you if these little buggers let me up." Duo told him.

"Alright boys let him up." Heero said. The kids groaned but did as they were instructed.

Duo stood and moved away from the boys, "I was gonna make spaghetti and meatballs."

Heero nodded, "I see. Alright boys, you can continue."

"What! No!" Duo screeched as he was tackled again, "I'll get you Yuy!"

"Take a number." Heero said, heading back into the kitchen.

Trowa looked up from where he was already starting to make the meatballs, "You let them loose again?" He grinned.

Heero nodded, "Yep. Had them hold off long enough to get the answer of spaghetti and meatballs." He told him, taking care of the noodles for the spaghetti.

Trowa laughed, "We'll at least they'll be tired by the time we leave."

"Yep." Heero agreed. They continued making and cooking dinner as Duo kept the kids busy in the living room.

"Should we be worried that they might kill Duo with tickling?" Heero asked.

Trowa looked towards the living room where they could hear Duo laughing while trying to get away from the kids, "Nah, he'll be fine."

"If you're sure then." Heero said, moving to set the table.

Trowa nodded as he checked the meatballs. He walked over to the door, "Boys time to wash up for dinner!"

The two could hear a collective groan from the kids before hearing the group get up and go get washed up for dinner.

Duo trudged into the kitchen a moment later and shot the two a glare as he washed his hands in the sink, "I'll get both of you for that."

Trowa just smirked, "Sure you will."

"Quatre has already beaten you to it." Heero stated.

Duo huffed and pulled drinks out of the fridge and placed them on the table as the kids entered. The boys all took a seat at the table.

Duo ruffled Ken's hair since he was the closest and sat down next to him, "Did you boys have fun?"

They nodded, "We did."

Duo nodded, "Good."

"How was school today?" Heero asked.

"It was good." Hitoshi said.

"Just good? Did anything happen?" Duo asked.

"Hitoshi had another nightmare last night so he's probably been a little sluggish all day." Heero explained.

"I have." Hitoshi agreed.

"Ahh." Duo hummed, that made sense.

"Are you going to be okay to pack?" Heero asked.

"I should be asking you that." Hitoshi said, pointing to the older's knuckles.

"He's fine." Trowa assured Hitoshi as he brought the food to the table, "He just needed to relieve some stress. I made sure he didn't go too far."

"What's the vehicle situation for the trip?" Duo asked, "How many are we taking?"

"Shortbus." Heero answered, not even bothering to mention that his knuckles were still sore. Duo nodded and helped Trowa pass the food around.

"Why do we own a shortbus again?" Hitoshi asked.

"Don't question it." Heero told him.

Duo snickered, "At one point your brother wanted to get a tank."

"No, Trowa suggested a tank and I said that it would destroy the city." Heero stated.

Duo shrugged, "Still funny."

Trowa grinned at the kids and winked.

"What about the moped?" Hitoshi asked.

"Duo's idea."

Duo grinned at Hitoshi, "I'm surprised he actually got one.

"Quatre overheard the idea so it was either do it myself or he would've." Heero said.

Trowa sat down at the table and filled his plate with spaghetti and meatballs, "He's already in the process of buying houses."

"Does that mean we need to clean out the fridge when we get home?" Gervasi asked.

"Maybe." Trowa told him, "Let's see how well we like the city and the school before we start talking about packing and cleaning the house."

"Alright." Gervasi asked.

"Do I need to start looking into middle schools?" Troy asked.

"We can look while we're there." Trowa told him, "I'm sure they have one you'll like."

"The highschool we're looking at does have a sister school that is a middle school. The uniforms are a bit wonky though." Ken said.

"Define wonky." Duo told him, "No way they can be worse than some of the ones we've worn."

"The uniform is different colors depending on your class schedule since they also offer elite and regular classes." Ken explained, "For students who are doing only elite classes, they're uniform colors are white and gold. If the student is going elite classes with one or two regular classes then the colors are white and silver. Students who are doing a mix of both have white and black uniforms. It's black and silver for the ones who are doing regular classes with one or two elite classes. Finally for the ones who are doing regular classes only, the colors for their uniforms are black and gold."

Duo made a face, "They could be worse but they should have stuck to just one or two colors for all uniforms instead of having several."

"They have more options for their class schedules than the high school does. Plus at least it's not as bad as they uniforms for the elite school." Ken stated.

Duo nodded, "Eat your food. You still have to finish packing before you can go to bed."

The boys went back to eating their food with Heero doing the same.

Duo and Trowa continued to eat, "Are you guys excited for the trip?"

The boys with the exception of Hitoshi nodded.

"Of course they are, they get a day out of school." Heero said.

"They still have to do their school work." Trowa told him.

"Don't remind us." Ken groaned.

"Oh we will be." Duo told him. Heero shook his head as the boys groaned.

Trowa smirked, "You only have to suffer through high school for a few more years."

"Three years is too many." Gervasi stated.

Trowa chuckled, "It'll go quick."

Gervasi pouted.

Trowa chuckled again and ruffled Gervasi's hair. Gervasi pouted more, trying to fix his hair.

Trowa just smirked and turned back to his dinner.

The boys went back to their food, talking about different things once in a while.

The adults listened and put in their comments every now and then. A while later the kids were done with dinner, their bellies full.

Duo started cleaning, "If one of you wants to open the door to the pantry, you might find something." He said innocently.

Hitoshi got up, heading over to the pantry and opening it. Inside the pantry was a small container of brownies.

"Brownies!" Hitoshi exclaimed.

"As if I would really forget to get dessert." Duo snickered.

"That was a mean trick." Ken said as Hitoshi brought the brownies to the table.

Duo smirked at him, "Gotta prank you when I can, besides it certainly distracted you four." He pulled out the kids wallets and phones from his pocket. He had grabbed them while they had been tickling him.

"Duo we agreed on not pickpocketing the kids." Heero told them as the kids frowned at him.

Duo shrugged and placed the items on the table, "I'm surprised they didn't notice."

"They were probably too busy trying to punish you for forgetting the dessert." Heero stated.

Duo grinned, "Exactly."

Trowa snorted in amusement.

"You don't mess with dessert damn it." Hitoshi said.

"Otouto, language." Heero told him.

"So sorry oh Prince of Dessert." Duo teased, "Please forgive this humble peasant for his mistake."

Hitoshi stuck his tongue out, making Heero shake his head.

Duo snorted and resumed cleaning up, "I would go finish my homework while I could. You wouldn't want to do it while on the bus would you?"

"They're most likely going to be sleeping on the bus." Heero said.

"I know. Which is why I'd get it done now since we've all got to be up early." Duo told him.

The boys took their brownies and retreated into a different room to do their homework.

"All that so you could pickpocket them?" Trowa asked amused.

Duo grinned at him and held up another wallet causing Trowa to check his pockets before giving Duo a droll look. Duo tossed the wallet to him, his grin growing wider.

"Maxwell I'm telling you this now, if I find my wallet missing or something very specific missing in my wallet, I am going to take your damn hand." Heero warned him.

"I know better than to pickpocket you." Duo snorted.

"Hasn't stopped you before." Heero pointed out, checking his own pockets.

"I didn't take your wallet 'Ro." Duo said.

Heero found that yes, his wallet was still in his pocket. Though this now prompted him to make sure that his picture was still in it.

Duo finished cleaning and sat back down at the table. Heero opened his wallet, making sure that the picture was still in it.

"I didn't take anything 'Ro." Duo sighed, "Would you like to do a strip search?"

"I'll do it." Trowa smirked.

Duo smirked back, "Oh I know you would." He winked at Trowa.

"Oi bi disasters, no flirting with the kids in the other room." Heero said, relaxing when he saw that the picture was still carefully tucked away in its hiding space.

Duo snorted, "Fine." He stuck his tongue out at Heero.

Heero rolled his eyes, waiting for his heartbeat to calm down some, "Didn't you say that you were going to look for the systems?"

Duo nodded, "Yeah, hang on." He got up and went to grab his laptop. When he came back he placed it on the table and opened it. He pulled up a program and turned it to face Heero, "I found Wings programming and there is an AI in there."

Heero looked over the program, "Is there anyway to access just the AIs so we can carry them around with us? I bet they're bored just hanging around in your laptop."

Duo hummed, "Maybe. We'd need something to put them in. Like a mini hand sized version of the Gundams, just without all the weapons."

Heero gave Duo a look, "I was thinking maybe our phones or laptops. Maybe let them have bluetooth access so they could go between the two."

"That would work too." Duo agreed.

"Do I even want to know where the idea of mini gundams come from?" Heero asked.

"Duo promised me a mini wing!" Hitoshi called from the other room.

Duo shrugged, "I had planned on making mini models of them for the kids."

"Ah." Heero said, putting his wallet away.

"The mini Wing I made for Hitoshi is done, by the way." Duo told him.

"He'll be happy to hear that." Heero replied.

Duo grinned at him, "Made another one in case you wanted your own."

Heero tried to hide a smile, "He can guard whatever small pre-war stuff I still own."

Duo stood and went to grab them from his room. He stopped by the living room and handed Hitoshi's to him and then brought the second one to Heero.

Hitoshi gingerly held his Mini wing to his chest after he admired it. Heero looked up from the programming when Duo came back.

Duo handed over the mini Wing to Heero and sat back down. "The limbs can be moved so you can put him in whatever position you want."

Heero looked over his mini wing, "You have guard duty tonight my friend." He told the robot.

Duo smiled, "I've started making the others but they aren't finished yet."

Heero sat down his mini wing, an idea coming to him, "Hey, since Trowa and I are both here, do you think it would be possible to access Wing's, Heavyarms' and DeathScythe's AIs before we head out?"

Duo hummed and pulled the laptop back to him. He picked through Wings code until only the AI system was open and then did the same for Deathscythe and Heavyarms, "And they're up."

"That was fast." Heero said, taking out his phone.

Duo shrugged, "They were already active so it wasn't that hard."

"I see. So how do we know that they are currently running?" Heero asked.

"Holy fuck, freedom!" A voice male voice from Duo's laptop said.

"Okay never mind."

Duo laughed, "That's how."

"Oh so you mean someone finally decided to pull us up?" A second male voice asked. It was lighter than the first one.

"Aw damn, and here I am, just finishing my will incase Sandrock murders us." A third voice said. It was a bit deeper but soft compared to the other two.

Duo snorted, "Hello boys. How is life inside my laptop?"

"Duo I say this with love but clear your damn porn stash." The second voice said.

"Okay so that one is Deathscythe." Heero said.

"My porn stash doesn't need clearing." Duo sniffed.

Trowa snickered, "I've seen your stash Duo. It does need a little clearing."

"I agree with both Scythe and Trowa." The third voice said.

"And that one must be Heavyarms." Heero stated.

"How would you guys like to get out of the laptop and onto our phones?" Duo asked.

"Oh sweet god please. We are bored and Sandrock has threatened to murder us if one more game of strip poker is played." The first voice said.

"Don't worry Wing, we will make sure Sandrock murders no one." Heero told him.

Duo snickered, "Alright. Give me a minute to set up the transfer." He got up and went to grab a cable from his office and hooked it into the laptop, "Heero connect your phone." He said handing over the cable.

"So strip poker huh?" Heero asked as he plugged in his phone.

"We have very limited game options." Wing stated.

Duo started typing, fully focused on his task, "Wing might go silent for a bit as he's transferred."

"Oh good, we can skip his turn for Karaoke." DeathScythe said.

"Ignore Scythe, he's just jealous that Wing has a good singing voice." Heavyarms pointed out.

Trowa snorted, "I don't know, if Scythe sings the same way Duo does..."

Duo blushed and stuck his tongue out, "Not the same kind of singing and you know it."

Trowa winked at him.

"Bisasters the both of ye." Heero commented.

"Wing told us that you're bi too." Deathscythe said.

"I am but I happen to lean more towards girls." Heero told him.

"All three of us are bisasters." Trowa snorted.

"Wufei is still a mystery." Heero stated.

"Fei is... complicated." Duo said, "I'm not sure if he even knows right now but he's been a bit busy so he hasn't had the chance to explore and find out. I do know that he is attracted to both sexes though."

"I think Quatre is the only straight one out of the group." Heero said.

Duo nodded, "He is. I tried to get in his pants once but he politely but firmly told me no. He did later admit he was flattered by the attention."

"I remember that. You were surprised that he turned you down." Trowa grinned.

"Quatre is really comfortable with his body though." Heero voiced.

Duo nodded, "He is and I might have been a little drunk when I asked him." He admitted.

Heero facepalmed, "Duo no. We've been over this."

Duo grinned sheepishly, "Trowa is the one that got me drunk."

Trowa put on his best innocent look.

Heero sighed, "I'm starting to think Quatre was right to ask me if he needed to be worried about you being his wingman Duo."

"Pfft please. I'm an excellent wingman." Duo told him.

"Oh please, you got slapped from the last pick up line you used." Heero reminded him.

Duo grinned, "It was worth it."

Heero shook his head, "You went home with no one that night."

"Still worth it." Duo told him, "Ended up having fun with Tro that night."

"Things I don't need to know." Heero said.

"Same." Wing agreed.

"Oh look, Wing is done." Duo said, "Time for Scythe. You ready buddy?" Duo asked as he disconnected Heero's phone and connected his.

"Yes, very much so." Deathscythe said.

"Happy to be free Wing?" Heero asked.

"Yes because now I can avoid murder." Wing replied, now appearing as an avatar on Heero's phone screen.

The avatar's appearance was male with brown hair that wasn't as dark or as messy as Heero's hair, blue eyes that were darker than Heero's Prussian blues, and warm porcelain skin with a scar on his right cheek.

"You should introduce him to the kids." Trowa said as Duo got started with transferring Deathscythe.

"Kids? Heero did you knock someone up!?" Wing asked.

"No I did not. Trowa means our younger siblings." Heero said.

Duo snickered and Trowa smirked at the thought of Heero knocking anyone up.

Wing tried not to blush, "In my defense, it has been two years and Duo has a very boring porn stash on his laptop."

"My porn is not boring!" Duo exclaimed quietly so the kids wouldn't hear him.

"Eh, it's kind of boring." Chirped Deathscyhe as his avatar popped up on Duo's phone screen.

Like Wing, his avatar was male but with pale dark brown that was in a low ponytail, bright light green eyes, and pale Caucasian skin.

Duo scowled at him, "Traitor." He muttered as he disconnected his phone and held his hand out for Trowa's.

"There are only so many games we can play before we start raiding your porn stash for something to do." Deathscythe argued.

Trowa handed Duo his phone and watched as Heavyarms was transferred over, "It's a tad boring, but I only say that because I know you keep the really interesting porn on a different laptop."

Duo scowled at him and Trowa just smiled innocently.

"It's even more boring when you have to organize the porn." Heavyarms said, his avatar showing up once he was transferred over.

Heavyarms' avatar had red short shaggy hair with a dark red sweatband in it, light brown eyes, and almond skin with freckles going across his face and the bridge of the nose.

"You organized porn?" Heero asked.

"I did not organize porn." Duo scowled as he shut down the program and then his laptop, "I simply keep the more... extreme porn on a different laptop in case Ken ever got a hold of this one."

"Oh no, we organized the porn." Deathscythe clarified.

"Why?" Heero questioned.

"I like dicks, Scythe and Arms likes both, Rock likes chicks, and no one knows about Shen." Wing answered.

"So our Gundams AI's are just like us..." Duo muttered, "I'm gonna introduce you to Ken now, so please stop talking about porn." He said as he got up and headed towards the room where the kids were.

Trowa followed, still looking interestedly at Heavyarms.

Heero followed after the two, glad to be talking to Wing again. The kids were just about almost done with their homework, though Ken looked like he was debating on if he wanted to destroy his homework or not.

"Hey guys, wanna meet some really special friends of ours?" Duo asked the group.

"You finally found the one?" Ken asked, looking up from his homework.

Hitoshi tried not to facepalm, "I don't think they mean that kind of special Ken."

Duo snorted, "No not that type of friend. No I'm talking about the friends that helped keep us alive during the war." He told them as he turned his phone so they could see Deathscythe, "Meet my good buddy, Deathscythe."

Deathscythe waves with a smile, "Hello." He greeted then saw the Mini wing that was by Hitoshi, "Is that a mini wing?"

"There's a mini me? I wanna see." Wing stated.

"Holy crap that's cool." Ken said in amazement.

Duo walked closer so the kids could take a closer look, "Yes, there is a mini Wing, two mini Wings, technically. I've recently started making mini models of you guys for our little group." Duo told Wing.

"The other Mini wing is in the kitchen." Heero said, turning his phone so Wing could see the kids and the mini wing.

"I'm so tiny." Wing said when he saw the mini him. Trowa chuckled at the kids amusement as he showed them Heavyarms.

Heavyarms saw Troy and Gervasi first, "Is that Gervasi and Troy? They've grown since I last saw them."

"Yep, they've grown a lot in the past couple of years." Trowa told him.

"Has Troy stopped trying to take knives?" Heavyarms asked.

"That was only once dang it." Troy stated.

Trowa smiled, "Cathy has started training him how to use them."

"I feel sorry for the poor soul that gets doomed by him then." Heavyarms said.

Trowa grinned and nodded his agreement. He looked over and saw Duo letting Ken talk to Deathscythe.

Ken appeared to be asking Deathscythe a million questions a minute, with the AI being both impressed and a bit worried that the boy might forget to breath.

Duo was smiling, happy that the two were getting along. While that was going on, Hitoshi was talking to Wing with the two getting to know each other.

After a while, when it started to get late, Duo called an end to it, "Y'all can talk again tomorrow on the trip if you want, but for now it's bedtime."

The AIs blinked at this, "What trip?" They asked.

"We're taking a trip that's about six or seven hours away to visit a school that the boys are interested in." Duo said, which was half of the truth, the other half was up to Heero to tell.

"That's a bit far for a school." Deathscythe said.

"Well it's not just for the school." Heero added.

"If we like the school and the boys are accepted into it, then we'd move there." Duo explained to Deathscythe.

"It's also for something personal." Heero said.

"Persona- oh did you finally your brother?" Wing asked.

"Yep, all he has to do is contact him." Duo said.

"I'm glad that he found him." Wing said.

Duo nodded, "So are we."

"I still have to figure out what to say to him." Heero said.

"You will, don't worry." Duo told him, "Alright, whoever is staying here tonight go get ready for bed."

"Is that an invitation?" Trowa teased him. Duo just winked.

"Don't you still have packing to do?" Heero asked Trowa.

"It won't take that long." Trowa shrugged. Heero shook his head as he and Hitoshi got up, both collecting their mini Wings.

"See you guys in the morning." Duo said.

"I'll be back soon." Trowa said, "It won't take me long."

"We're going to figure out how to get Dibby settled." Heero said.

"Who's Dibby?" Wing asked.

"Heero's cat." Duo said as he got the other kids up to get ready for bed.

"When did you get a cat?" Wing questioned.

"A week ago." Heero replied.

"It's a very cute cat." Duo grinned, "Likes to sleep on Heero's face."

"He's seven months and likes cuddling." Heero said. Trowa chuckled as he walked towards the door, it wouldn't take him long to back a bag or to get back.

"You're welcome to stay the night too, 'Ro, no strings attached." Duo told him.

"I appreciate the offer but I need to figure out the kitten travel equipment that Trowa got for Dibby so I can see how Dibby handles it. Plus Hitoshi and I need to pack anyways." Heero said.

Duo nodded, "He started on some of it. We'll see you in the morning."

"I don't know if I need to pack my eye patches or my contacts." Hitoshi said as he gathered his stuff.

"I'd pack both and then you can wear whichever one you feel most comfortable with." Duo told him as he gave the boy a one armed hug.

"We did refill your contacts right?" Heero asked.

"I think so." Hitoshi said, returning Duo's hug. If not, he was going to have to come up with a cover story for his eyepatches.

"See you in the morning bud." Duo told him.

"See you if I am awake in the morning." Hitoshi said. Heero chuckled, knowing that most likely he'll end up carrying the younger into the shortbus in the morning.

Duo walked them out, "Have a good night."

"You too Duo." Heero said before ushering Hitoshi out to the truck.