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Chapter 4:  "That bad, huh?"  "No...That *good*."

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Heero surveyed the study carefully.  Everyone was spread out over the room while they waited for Lady Une to ring them.  Relena was tucked in a corner with Sally, who looked unhappy.  Relena had her devious face on.  No one would recognize it but Heero, but it was the look she wore when she was trying to talk someone into doing something, or getting information out of someone.  He couldn't think of why she would be wearing the devious face with Sally Po, but there it was.

Duo was sitting in an overstuffed chair, glumly holding a heating pad to his jaw, and sucking down a smoothie through a straw.  His jaw had stiffened up over night, and he had not, in fact, been able to eat this morning.  Heero had been amused, and was rather surprised when Wufei hadn't taken any pleasure from the situation.  It seemed he didn't even notice it, in fact, just pushing his food around his plate, unless he thought someone was looking.  Then he would take a large, showy bite.  And try to hide it when he gagged on it.

Quatre was sitting at the desk, fiddling with the vidphone, and the connections to the larger screen.  He kept looking around the room, puzzled by everyone's off behavior.  Trowa was leaning against the wall, not looking surprised at anyone's behavior.  It was difficult to tell if this was just because that was how Trowa looked, or if he knew something Heero did not.

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Sally's face was buried in her hands, and she refused to look up.  She was afraid she might see Wufei.  She kept moaning "I can't believe I did that" over and over.

Relena sighed, yet again, and tugged at Sally's arm, yet again.  "First of all" she tried again, "both of you did that.  And for God's sake Sally, how was it?"

"Oh my God" she groaned.

Relena winced.  "That bad, huh?" No wonder Sally was having such a problem with it.

"No" Sally moaned.  "That good."

Relena's jaw hit the floor, but before she could ask anything else, the vidphone beeped, signalling Lady Une's call.

Quatre was startled, and it took a moment before he could answer.  Very soon, however, Une appeared on the large screen, looking overworked.  "I'm glad to see you're all there and safe" she began.

"What's going on?" Relena spoke up.  Being used to this situation was one thing, but she didn't have to like it.

"I'll try to explain the situation as rapidly as possible" Une nodded in Relena's direction.  "Over the past six months, Miss Relena, you have been receiving letters of a threatening nature.  Unbeknownst to you, obviously."

"They were threatening how?" Duo asked.

Heero glared at him.  Une looked uncomfortable, but answered.  "They were of a violent and... explicit... nature."

Relena suddenly felt rather uncomfortable herself, and looked down.  Sally took her hand and squeezed.  Duo was chastised and resumed sucking on his straw.

"We felt there was little real threat involved" Une continued.  "Relena is hardly the first person to have a stalker.  When the writer began giving specific details of the Peacecraft Mansion and ESUN parliament house, however, we began to monitor the situation more closely.

"We discovered the source of these threats-- a man on a small L5 colony.  Right when we found him, however, he disappeared.

"Mr. Winner's Maganacs regularly patrol the landing pads on Earth, and matched his description when he disembarked from a shuttle in Europe.  That's when Miss Relena was removed to your present location, until the Preventers can pick him up."

Relena had gone steadily paler through Lady Une's report, and she was still and quiet through the remainder of the conversation with Lady Une.  It was to be expected, she supposed.  She was widely known throughout Earth and the Colonies.  There was nothing to worry about.  The Preventers would pick him up, she would never even have to see him.

After Une hung up, Relena slipped to Heero's side.  "I want to read some of these letters." He looked very stern.

"No, you do not."

"Yes, I do.  You've read them!"

"Yes, I have.  And you will not read them.  I forbid it."

"Forbid it?  Who the hell do you think you are, Heero?"

He grabbed her arms.  "Relena, you don't want to read them.  Trust me on this, if nothing else.  I will find him and kill him.  There is no need for you to get any more involved in this then you already are."

She closed her eyes.  "I do trust you Heero, you know that.  Promise me you'll leave this to the Preventers." He opened his mouth to object.  "And I won't try to read any letters, okay?"

He shut his mouth, and nodded after a moment.  He let her go, rubbing his hands up and down her arms gently, to make up for grabbing her so roughly.

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The Preventers were laughable.  The simple disguise got him by easily, and he was off.  To find his destiny, where ever She was.

  

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