The Hazards of Magic IV
A Gundam W - Ruin Explorers Fusion
By Sefilin

Wufei sat, brooding and muttering to himself in the corner of the room that had been taken over by the Gundam pilots before the final battle. A final battle that was very much on the Chinese boys mind as he contemplated Treize's sacrifice and the very strange happenings afterwards.

Fancy the great Heero Yuy not quite being able to save the day, it was unheard of, inconceivable, but was, quite clearly what had actually happened. After all their hard work blowing up OZ bases and dealing with Duo Maxwell, everything looked like it was going to hell in a basket. Then something had happened that had saved them after all, and of all the unfair things to happen in his life, what happened then had to be the worst.

Maxwell had somehow managed to be the one to save the world. The clown, the baka, the braided, loudmouthed, obnoxious, irritating, annoying, manic American. It was humiliating, as one of the Gundam pilots to have to live under that cloud and he was seriously considering running away to hide before everyone heard and Maxwell became even more insufferable than usual - an almost impossible feat, but one he was absolutely sure Maxwell would manage just to spite him.

Just then, he was saved from beginning to mutter about the American's gall at disappearing after the fact and postponing Wufei's obligatory congratulations so that he had to hang around for longer than he wanted to and brood - which he enjoyed, though not when it was about the braided baka. Quatre scrambled into the room, almost colliding with Trowa in his haste to give the taller pilot something. Then the blonde was gone after a hastily muttered sentence.

Wondering what the Arab's problem was, he looked at Trowa who was gazing at a small furry creature in his hand. Was that what Quatre had given him, and if so why? Wufei had a hard time understanding his fellow pilots and, though Maxwell was by far the worst, Quatre and Yuy had a habit of making him uneasy also. Yuy and his insufferable snickering on the battlefield... and him meant to be the perfect soldier, too.

A soft chittering broke into his mental rant and he noticed that the thing on Trowa's hand was busy moving around and chattering almost as much as Maxwell did. Wufei congratulated himself on the aptness of his comparison and continued to watch the spectacle of a creature dancing about Trowa's hand.

Then Trowa nodded, "Sure, Duo."

And he walked out.

Completely baffled by that last comment, Wufei decided to follow and trailed Trowa down the corridor and into the next where their current quarters were situated.

Instead of walking through the door with '03' pasted on it though, he went to '02', taking out a few thin tools to open it. A quiet chittering could be heard, and as Wufei moved a little closer, he could see the creature - which he now saw was a chipmunk wearing an outfit very much like Maxwell's, something that made him wonder how much damage had been done to Quatre by the ZERO system - pointing out the tools to be used.

Trowa went with the suggestions and had the door open in very short order.

Wufei followed them into the surprisingly clean room, and Wufei wondered if they were actually in Maxwell's room until he remembered that they hadn't really had the time to make themselves comfortable yet. Trowa and his furry friend bypassed the main room, not even pausing next to the bunk, but moving through to the tiny bathroom.

The pilot of Heavyarms opened the cabinet above the sink and raised his other hand so the chipmunk could see and took the indicated bottle off the shelf. He set the chipmunk down on the rim of the sink and unscrewed the cap, tapping a single blue pill into his palm. He held it out and the chipmunk scampered onto his hand, grabbed it and began munching away.

A flash of light later and Duo was standing next to Trowa.

"Thanks, man," he said to Trowa who shrugged and turned to leave.

"No problem, Duo."

Wufei stood in the doorway, obstructing Trowa's exit, trying to figure out what just happened. If he didn't know better, he would almost be inclined to say that the chipmunk just turned into Maxwell. But that couldn't be right. Surely it couldn't be right. Could it?

He replayed the scene in his head once more and came to the same conclusion. No, indeed, he hadn't seen a chipmunk turn into Duo; it was merely his mind playing tricks on him. He must have knocked his head and acquired a small case of concussion during that last battle without noticing it. That had to be it.

"Wufei," Trowa's quiet voice called him back to the present and he realised he was standing in the taller pilots way.

He moved aside and Trowa took a step forwards.

"Hey, either of you guys know if the mad scientists survived?"

Trowa glanced back over his shoulder to answer, "They didn't."

At the same time Wufei demanded to know why he wanted to know.

"I'm going to kill him if he's not already dead," Duo chirped cheerfully, bouncing out of the bathroom after Trowa. "But I suppose if he's dead I won't be able to. In which case, I hope he rots in hell for all eternity and crows pick at his eyeballs and worms make a home in his nostrils. I think that would be fitting, don't you?"

And much to Wufei's surprise, Trowa nodded, "Seems fair if he left you with that." A hand waved at the cabinet that held the bottle of pills.

"Exactly," Duo grinned, pleased that someone agreed with him and drifted out of the room.

It was about then that Wufei's mind finally reached the inevitable conclusion, that the chipmunk had, in fact, turned into Duo. Unable to deal with it, Wufei dropped onto Duo's bunk and, his last thought before he drifted into darkness was that he just knew things were going to be worse after Maxwell's saving of the world.

He just hadn't quite realised exactly how much worse. And unfortunately, now he did.


The last of these little ficlets ^_^ Duo's changed back and the Prof's not around for revenge to be exacted, so...