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SOLDIER AT HEART

Youko Sutsume


...We're facing perhaps the most important battle in our lives tomorrow.

In a few hours, we would be out there in the deep, all surrounding space, fighting for lives not only ours but all people, Earth and colonies. We might survive.

Or we might not.

In a few hours, we would be risking our lives in machines we call Gundams.

I should be afraid.

But strangely, I am not. Anxious perhaps, but not afraid... I can not explain the feeling. It is as if I am looking forward to tomorrow's battle, looking forward to put my life to risk.

You must think that I am mad. Maybe I am. I was mad, when I was under the influence of the Zero system that first time... iie, before then... when you died right in front of my eyes. Driven to death by the people of the colony I tried so hard to protect.

I didn't cry.

Would you be proud of me, Chichiue?

Zero system... a terrifying device that drills into the deepest, darkest part of your mind. Wing Zero.... the first Gundam carrying the system... the Gundam I built. Am I to blame for it?

But Zero system is what helped me find my true self. I had destroyed entire colonies with it. And I never felt bad for it. The others told me it was because of Wing Zero, it made me think irrationally. But I know the truth. It brings out the true nature of everyone, Chichiue, it shows us what we want, the darkest desire we have.

It found me.

A cold-blooded killer, capable of destroying without feeling.

I thought about that after, for a long while. I was confused. Then it dawned on me suddenly.

I am a soldier, Chichiue, always have been. Killing is just a part of a soldier's job. I grew up trying to be a son you would be proud of, the only heir of the family who would one day follow in your footsteps. But I had not lived my own life until I became the pilot of Sandrock. MY Sandrock. I felt I truly belonged out there on the battle field. One might even say I had...fun. Had enjoyed fighting alongside the others... Heero-kun, Duo-kun, Trowa-kun, Wufei-kun, Rashid and the Maganac fighters... everyone.

I enjoyed fighting. And Zero system saw that. I am a soldier, and that is why I can control the Zero system without losing myself. Heero-kun saw that too. Because he is the same. The others... they lost themselves in the power of the Zero system because no matter how much they are involved in the war, they are not truly soldiers at heart.

The fact that I am one amuses me. Me, who had the most sheltered life of all the Gundam pilots. Me, who was raised, not to become a soldier, but a noble. But it is who I am, and who I will ever be. I can not change that, nor do I want to.

I know you would be mad at me, Chichiue, for being a soldier, for everything. You tried so hard to raise me differently. Have you known that I would grow to be a soldier? Personalities can be hereditary, did you know I was to be a soldier because you were one too? Was that why you let yourselve die? Is that the way you fight?

Aa... I understand now, Chichiue.

Still, I wish you would be proud of me. I finally became who I truly am.

Tomorrow, we will be facing perhaps the most important fight in our lives. And I, a soldier at heart, will win.


~~~OWARI~~~


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