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Chapter 8: "We're destined to be together!"
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It was beautiful.  All that remained was to find out where She was.  Easy enough from the roof, with this bio detector.  It could pick up Her DNA.  Then it would be in the window alone, but out with a Princess.  His Princess.

He paced back and forth across the roof.  This house was long, but it had only one storey, so this shouldn't be too difficult.  There was a sign...but it wasn't Her.

Ah, a match at last.  And She was alone.  This was wonderful.

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Relena was sitting in the middle of the bed, her arms wrapped around her legs.  What was going on, why was it taking so long to get the power back up?  It had been nearly an hour, by her estimation.  Was everyone trapped behind a door like this?

She shifted, a little restless, a little uncomfortable.  She shivered, although it wasn't particularly cold.  It felt like someone was watching her.  She looked over her shoulder, but of course she was alone in the room.

She blinked.  Had a shadow crossed the window?  It could be her mind playing tricks on her.

Relena carefully backed off the bed.  Her first impulse was to run to the other side of the room, but then she would be trapped against the metal door.  She hovered by the foot of the bed, watching the window.

There was definitely a shadow.  Relena gasped and took a step back.  The window shattered as something large crashed through, and Relena screamed and ducked to avoid the flying glass and wood.

The large object swung out of the window again, but it was replaced by another shadow.  This was definitely climbing in.  Relena gasped and ran towards the bathroom, slamming the door shut behind her.  She locked the door, but it wasn't a very strong lock.

She held her breath, listening through the door.  There was a grunt and a thud, softer then when the metal door had come down.

"Princess?"

Biting back a scream, Relena searched for anything to put in front of the door.  She moved a hamper, but that was very light.  She tried to wedge it under the doorknob.  There was nothing else to use.

She searched under the sink to find her battery-operated travel curling iron.  If he was held off by the door for long enough, it would be hot enough to burn him when she swung it.  In the meantime, she lifted the cover of the toilet tank off.  It was heavy, but she had enough of an adrenaline rush going to use it.

By now, the bathroom door was shaking.  "I know you're in there, Princess" he called.  "Don't be afraid!  Can't you see, we're destined to be together!"

Relena raised the lid higher, and checked the light on the curling iron.

 The door buckled in the middle, and a boot came crashing through.  Relena resisted the urge to break his ankle.  It would be better to break his head.

He was pulling at the door now, calling her name.  She shuddered, but her determination did not waver.

A gunshot rang out, and the man slumped in front of the door.  Relena nearly dropped the lid on top of her foot, but she caught herself in time.

Her ears were ringing, but she carefully set the lid down.

"Relena?" his voice sounded a little shaky.

"I'm in here, Heero" she called, her voice a lot shaky.  "I'm fine."

She heard Heero grunting as he struggled to move the body from in front of the door.  She pulled the hamper back, unlocked the door, and turned off her curling iron.  Heero removed the side of the door with the knob, and Relena squeezed through and into his arms.

He held her tightly for a moment, then tilted her head back to look at her in the starlight.  "You're bleeding."

"I am?" she reached up to touch her cheek and it came away sticky and wet.  "It must have been when he broke the window."

Heero grunted and released her.  He crouched next to the body.

"Did you kill him?" She didn't want to ask the question, but she had to.

"No.  I shot him in the shoulder." Relena sighed with relief, but it ended in a gasp when the attacker groaned.

Heero went into the closet for a moment, and came out with rope.  He jerked the man's arms behind him to tie them together.  The man screamed before passing out with the pain.  Heero tied his feet together, then dragged the man, none too gently, over to the closet.  He shut the man in, and pushed the dresser in front of it.

"Do you always carry rope with you?" she asked.

"I carry many things with me."

Relena shook her head, bemused, but groaned as the cuts on her face made their presence felt.

"Are you sure you're all right?" Heero asked.

"Yes.  These are minor cuts."

He nodded.  Heero opened one of the drawers and took out a shirt.  "Then let's get out of here." Relena put on shoes, while Heero wrapped the shirt around his fist.  He went over to the window, and used the shirt-covered hand to knock the remaining glass and bits of wood out.  He was also careful to sweep everything off the window sill.  The window was the type made with many small squares of glass, held together by wooden panes.

"Come on." Heero jumped out the window first.  "Watch your head" he called back.  Relena climbed on the window and saw something large suspended from the roof, right outside the window.  "It's a battering ram of some sort" Heero said.

"It's how he broke the window" Relena said.  Heero caught her when she jumped down.  "How did you get in?" she asked.

"Ducts" he replied.  "We have to restart the power, then get the fire doors up."

They started to walk to the front of the house, but were stopped by pounding on a window they passed.  Heero and Relena pressed their faces against the glass, and found Quatre and Trowa inside.  They waved frantically.

The glass was too thick to talk through, so Heero mimed flipping a switch, and Quatre gestured to the back of the house.  Heero nodded and took Relena's hand to lead her back there.

They made their way to the back of the house.  Inside a small shed against the wall, Heero tripped the circuit breakers.  The house lit up at once.  Heero searched a nearby computer, and found the fire suppression system.  There was a schematic of the house with red dots showing the location of everyone inside.  It was impossible to tell who was who; there were 36 people inside.  One dot, however, seemed to be running in circles inside his room.  "Duo" Heero remarked.  He pushed a few buttons, and they waited.  Nothing happened; fire doors remained in place outside.

"Oops" Heero said, smiling slightly.  "That was the sprinklers."

"If I didn't know better, Heero, I'd say you did that on purpose."  Relena shook her head.  She did know better, and she was convinced by Heero's smirk that he had done it on purpose.

~!~

Sally smiled up at Wufei in the dark, then tightened her grip and flipped him over.  Now it was shewho slammed hiswrists over his head, shewho pinned himto the floor.  Underneath her, he growled and struggled to free himself.

"Oh, I don't think so" she purred and leaned down.

The lights went on, and they were momentarily blinded.  Sally sat up and released Wufei, who sat up as much as possible with Sally still sitting on top of him.  They looked around, blinking hard against the sudden light.  They were still alone, and the fire doors were still in place in front of all the bedrooms, and at both ends of the hall.

"What's going on now?" Sally muttered, when the ceiling opened up and poured water on them.

"Argh!" Wufei shouted, and they scrambled upright.  Wufei took it as a personal insult, and looked around for someone to attack.  They were both soaked before the sprinklers suddenly shut off, however.

A few minutes later, the fire doors all slid back into hiding in the ceiling.

Duo stumbled out into the hall immediately, grinning, and covered in white foam.  "Hey!" he waved and ran over to join Wufei and Sally.

He had made a foam hat, a foam goatee, and had collected a ball of foam at the end of his braid.  He looked Wufei and Sally over.  "Well," he laughed.  "You're all washed up!"

Both Wufei and Sally growled, but Duo's life was saved when Trowa and Quatre came running around the corner, wiping foam off themselves.

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