Disclaimers:  I do not own Gundam Wing or any of its characters.

Notes:  Heero has a talk with his clone.  Trowa and his clone have a quiet moment together.

Young Hearts

Part Seven

Heero finished dressing and stuffed the remainder of his belongings into a duffle that he kept in his locker.  He was wearing his
usual green tank top, although his spandex shorts had been replaced with jeans since the weather had turned quite cold.  Now
that his locker was cleared, he pulled his coat on and closed the door, nodding once in Trowa’s direction before he left the tall
young man alone with his clone.

He headed to the garage, passing by the infirmary as he walked along.  He glanced in and saw that Quatre was in there, waiting
as Sally tended to a wound on the clone of Treize’s forehead.  Heero pondered that for a moment, wondering why Quatre was
there when Wufei had been the one to volunteer to take the boy with him.

However, he didn’t stop to ask, continuing on his way to the garage and his car.  As they continued to walk, Heero’s clone
tapped him on the arm.  Heero paused and looked down at the boy.  “Do you need something?”  Heero asked, wondering why
the child would stop him.

The child looked up at Heero, a serious expression on his young face.  “We cannot go by the same name . . . and unlike that
braided boy, I do NOT want to be called Chibi.”  He said calmly, crossing his arms over his chest as he stared up at Heero.

Heero nodded, seeing that the child had a valid point.  He pondered over the situation briefly and could only come up with one
viable solution.  “Why not go by Odin?  He has been dead for years.”

The clone quirked an eyebrow, cocking his head to one side as he looked up at Heero with curiosity.  “Why Odin?  I know he
was my trainer and the only paternal figure I ever had . . . but he wasn’t that great a guy.  Why should I honor him?”

Heero chuckled lightly, closing his eyes for a moment before he opened them again and sighed in amusement.  “You sound like
Wufei.”  He took a breath, trying to convey his thoughts into words, a process that was never easy for him.  “You’re not doing
it to honor Odin Lowe.  You are doing it to have a name.  Look at it this way.  You could have asked Duo to name you, and he
would have come up with something out of Monty Python.”

“Huh?”  The child asked, blinking in apparent confusion.

Heero allowed his lips to quirk into a small smirk.  “An old British series.  Duo finds it quite amusing and sometimes acts out his
favorite parts when he thinks that no one is looking.”

The boy nodded, accepting the answer.  He was silent for a moment, then looked up at Heero with a serious expression once
again.  “Odin will be an acceptable name . . . I can think of nothing better.”

“Good, then let us continue on our way.”  Heero responded, then once again began walking toward the garage, knowing that
Odin was walking along beside him.

As they entered the parking garage, Heero noticed Duo and his clone standing beside Duo’s motorcycle.  Heero frowned.  Duo
couldn’t possibly be thinking of taking that child out on that thing.  Besides, there wouldn’t be enough room, not when Duo also
had the clones of Relena and Une accompanying him.  Heero shook his head, tossing the thoughts aside . . . it wasn’t really his
business what Duo did or did not do.  

Heero walked over to his own vehicle, a small car that suited his transportation purposes.  Before he had even reached out to
grasp the handle of the car, Duo ran over and slapped him on the back.  “Hey, Heero, going shopping?”  Duo asked.

Heero turned and glared at him.  “Of course I am.”  Heero replied, watching as Duo’s clone ran up behind the American, smiling
almost as brightly as Duo was.  The clones of Relena and Une also followed Duo, although not quite so fast.  “Where else would
I be going?”

“Need some help?”  Duo asked.  “Do you even know what to buy for your clone?”

Heero frowned as he thought.  To be honest he did not know what to buy for a child.  His training hadn’t included child care.  
“No . . . I am unsure of what to purchase for Odin.”

“Odin?”  Duo asked, his brow furrowing slightly.

“He required a name and it was an acceptable option.”  Heero responded, gesturing down at his clone.

Duo got down on his knees, looking straight at Odin.  “So, your name’s Odin, huh?  Not a bad name.”  Duo smiled, reaching
out and ruffling his fingers through Odin’s hair.  The child just glared at Duo for doing such a thing.  Odin backed away and
moved behind Heero, using his older self as a shield to block Duo from getting so close to him again.

Duo shrugged and rose to his feet, smirking at Heero.  Heero shook his head and turned away from the American, reaching out
to open the car door again.  “Goodbye, Duo.”  Heero said.

“Wait.”  Duo replied, grasping Heero’s shoulder and turning him back around.  “Um . . . could we come with you?  We can help
each other.  You need help with what to buy and we need a ride.”  He gestured to his motorcycle.  “I am not taking the little guy
on that . . . at least not without a helmet.  Not enough room for the girls anyway.”

Heero sighed, thinking it over.  It would be beneficial.  Duo did seem to at least have an idea of what needed to be purchased,
where Heero had no clue.  And if Heero accompanied the American, he could see to it that Duo didn’t buy too many
unnecessary items, such as toys or something just as frivolous.

“Fine.”  Heero nodded.  He turned and opened the back door, ushering his own clone inside, then waiting as Duo’s clone and the
girls followed Odin.  Then Heero closed the door behind them.

He stepped around to the other side of the car and got into the driver’s seat, noticing that Duo was already sitting and waiting in
the seat beside his.  With a grunt, Heero slammed the car door closed and turned on the ignition, noticing in the rearview mirror
that the four children in the backseat had fastened their seat belts.  Heero fastened his own seatbelt, deciding that he should set a
good example for his young clone, then sighed as he pulled out of the parking garage, Duo’s chatter having already begun before
the car had even started moving.  This was going to be a long day, Heero thought.


Trowa folded his uniform shirt and placed it into a backpack, zipping the bag closed since there was nothing else left in his
locker.  He was once again dressed in his usual clothes, his jeans and turtleneck . . . it was suitable clothing considering the cold
weather outside.  His coat lay across the bench in front of him, next to his backpack.  He picked it up and quickly pulled it on.

He looked up from his task, his eyes settling on his clone.  The child was sitting on the floor across from him, his knees drawn
to his chest as he stared at the floor, his small arms wrapped around his body as he trembled slightly.  As Trowa watched him,
the boy looked up, his green eyes shimmering with both fear and unshed tears.

Memories swarmed through Trowa’s mind.  He tried to block them away . . . to hide them behind the walls he had spent most
of his life building around himself.  But it was no use.  It was as if that child’s eyes had bored directly into his soul, burning a
hole through all the defenses Trowa had put up to protect himself.

Pain surrounded him, taunts and teases thrown at him over the years by countless people . . . by his comrades, the other
mercenaries . . . the agony of bodily harm that angry and lustful men had caused to him.  Before Trowa knew what was
happening, he had fallen to the floor and curled in on himself, his body and mind aching from the torment of his memories.

Something touched his arm and Trowa panicked, pushing himself up and scrambling away from whatever had come into
contact with him.  His back hit a wall of lockers and he sat there, panting, trying to regain a normal breathing pattern as he
clamped his eyes shut, his body shivering severely.  He curled his arms around his body, his legs bent and knees close to his
chest as he struggled to take in large gulps of air, feeling the sweat that was soaking his skin.

Something touched his arm again, but this time Trowa didn’t panic.  Fear flittered through his mind, reminding him of past
traumas, but he opened his eyes, only to see his young clone looking at him.  The concern on the child’s face was obvious.  And
although he didn’t speak, the comfort he was offering was showing in the way that he had pressed his trembling hand to Trowa’
s arm.  Trowa relaxed slightly, pushing himself into a more comfortable position as he stretched his legs out in front of him.

Without a word, or even a sound, the clone moved forward.  He hesitantly sat across Trowa’s lap, slowly curling his small arms
around Trowa’s body as he laid his head against his older self’s chest.  He let out a shuddered breath, then slowly relaxed
against Trowa, probably a very difficult thing for him to do since he was terrified of human contact.

Trowa let a small smile curl his lips as the boy embraced him.  Carefully, purposely moving slowly, Trowa returned the embrace
with one arm, making sure not to hold on too tightly as he held him.  “You recognize your own pain in me . . . hm, little one?”  
Trowa asked, his voice barely able to be called a whisper as he raised his free hand and softly stroked his slender fingers
through the boy’s hair.

The child nodded against his chest, making a wordless sound in his throat that could only be called a grunt.  Trowa knew it was
the only reply that he would be able to get out of him, and was satisfied with his affirmative answer.

“I guess I’m more like you then I would care to admit . . . even to myself.”  Trowa whispered, continuing to idly stroke the
clone’s soft hair.  “I guess this means you trust me somewhat.  You know I won’t hurt you, huh?”

Again, the boy just nodded, the trembling in his body slowly fading away.  At least he wasn’t afraid of Trowa . . . that was a
good thing.

“The others won’t hurt you . . . but I know it’ll take time for you to trust them.  Try your best . . . at least you still have a
chance to be happy . . . not like me.”  Trowa said, whispering the last part under his breath.

After a moment of nothing but silence, Trowa looked down and smiled.  The clone was sleeping, his face calm and serene as he
rested in Trowa’s embrace.  Trowa carefully rose to his feet, cradling the child’s body in his arms as he stood.  

With only a minor amount of difficulty, Trowa managed to grab his backpack and sling it over his shoulder without awakening
his young clone.  The boy needed to relax a bit, so Trowa was in no hurry to disturb the boy.

Taking one last glance back, Trowa left the locker room, heading for his truck in the parking garage.  He opened the door as
quietly as he could, gently setting the boy down on the seat and securing the seatbelt around him.  He closed the door and
walked around, tossing his bag in the back as he got himself into the driver’s seat.  In only minutes, he was driving along a road,
on his way to where he had left most of his belongings . . . with Catherine at the circus.

To Be Continued . . .