Gundam Wing


Clees: *waves* Hello!  This is the result of reading too many „Thing Gundam Wing Pilots would Never Say“ lists and pancakes.  Urm, lemme explain.  Ya see, we (we consisting of me and Line) were sitting at the dinner table, waiting for Line’s mom to put the food on the table.  As we waited, we thought it’d be funny to be one of the pilots and confuse the hell outta her mommi.  I was Wufei and she was Quatre.  So, the entire time, Wufei lectured his pancakes on justice and Quatre about manners as Quatre made obscene comments, forcing me to run to the bathroom to stick toilet paper up my nose.  So, anyways, we kept up the roleplay after dinner, only getting a bit more serious about it.  We love to roleplay, and this was the first time we had ever tried it using people that weren’t our own.  I should mention we are both actors, so roleplaying is kinda an accelerated version of that, as well as we write alot, so this is kinda, umm, “character“ study, if you will.  OIIII; so, I took on being Heero, Trowa and Wufei (which works pretty well for me, since I’m the taller, beanpole of us two) and Line was Duo and Quatre.  After we finished, we fell into bed (it was about four, five by then and we started around eight-nineish) and the next day we got up around two, ate then got ready to leave.  We went to see Starlight Express (which took us four freakin hours to drive to).  After the show, we tried to remember the order of a bunch of scenes because we had the sudden urge to write it down. (it’s a writers thing, you don’t want to know; we all secretly have compulsive/obsessive disorders)  So, when we got back, we wrote what we could remember down on little stick-it cards and ordered them as best we could.  It’s hard to do that, considering that each of us was either two people, or three at the same time.  Let me just say that by the end of yesterday’s roleplay, I had mastered the art of grunting and staring expressionlessly for hours.  Anyway, that’s the reason for there only being up to two people in a scene at a time, usually, and the bit of disorder in the order of events.  And the reason why it’s not explained how one character jumps to different places and how they get there.  This is also why throughout the whole story, the writing style changes from bit to bit because we’re both writing this.  OI; now to go help Line with a Trowa/Quatre scene.  Tschüß!




            But now: Let’s enter the madness!


Wufei’s eyes fell upon the covered shape, recognizing it in a heartbeat,  Harp...  Meiran played the harp...  He was only vaguely aware of Quatre saying something to him.  He shrugged in response to whatever it was the blond said and moved to the harp.

            “Hey Wu-man, Duo made a mess in here, I apologize for it looking like this.“

            Wufei’s eyes didn’t leave the harp as he carefully pulled the velvet drape away from the wood.  “Don’t call me that.“ was his only absent response as his eyes caught sight of the now naked and elegant harp.


            Wufei looked over at him now, his usual scowl coming back into place over his silent wonder.  “You called me ‘Wu-Man‘.  Don’t call me that.“

            Quatre looked sheepishly away.  Wufei turned back to the harp.  “Sorry, I heard it so much from Duo...I... I won’t ever say it again.“  The Chinese boy only nodded, his attention to the instrument in his arms.  Gently, he touched the taunt strings, and began tuning it.  Quatre watched him curiously before plopping onto the sofa, settling in with blank sheets of paper and drawings aides on his lap.  He watched Wufei silently, enjoying getting to see the usually hard pilot being so gentle.  “I didn’t know you played the harp.“

            “I don’t.  Someone I knew did.“  Wufei softly brushed his fingertips back and forth across the now tuned strings, producing a beautiful crescendo.

            The Arabic smiled.  “Well, it’s nice to be able to play an instrument.  I love playing the violin, it’s a nice retreat and break from the world when I get the time.“

            The somber Chinese boy only nodded, his fingers moving in a quiet melody on the strings.  The bright Quatre smiled to himself and kept talking.

            “It would be nice if all of us played something.  Wouldn’t that be funny?  I wonder what Duo could play?” Quatre giggled to himself before starting on the work at hand in his lap.  Wufei played a bit more, to the blond’s  delight.  Quatre enjoyed all styles of classical music. 

            Wufei opened his eyes and saw it was his own hands on the strings, that it was his own chest against the wood of the harp.  Sighing silently, the Chinese boy picked up the drape and placed it softly around the instrument.  Trying to take his mind off things, the pilot began righting a rather large overturned chair.

            Quatre smiled over at him, forgetting his work again.  “Maybe Duo would play a triangle?”

            Wufei grunted.  “Probably the only thing he’s got enough skill to use.”  The pilot arranged the now righted chair and leaned against a wall.

            The Arabian grinned, giggling.  “Yes, that is possibly true, but not very nice.  I could see him being onstage, before a large crowd, playing a guitar and singing.  But of course, he’d be wearing some skintight, sexy leather pants!  Hehehehe, he’d enjoy that kind of attention, yes-Wufei??”

            At the image and mention of sexy leather pants, as well as the idea of millions of people pining to do, um, certain things, Wufei’s nose began bleeding rather profusely and the disgruntled boy made a bee-line for the bathroom, cursing under his breath.  The blond blinked wide, blue eyes at the empty doorway.

            Quatre sighed.  He’d better let Wufei just deal with it on his own- the Sandrock pilot had been the reason (intentionally and unintentionally) behind many a nose bleedings lately, and felt it better to leave the poor Chinese boy alone for a while.


Duo sat on his bed, a whole pile of blueprints resting on his knees. He fumbled with the tip of his braid as he studied the construction of different OZ bases trying to make something out of it in his brains. He tried to find weak points, something the different bases had in common. If all bases were mainly constructed the same way, fighting against OZ would be much easier and specialized battle plans would be much more efficient. The scientists had left a whole lot of blueprints for the Gundam pilots and Quatre and Duo had decided to study them. Now, sitting over his work, Duo regretted having been so generous when he had made the decision to take over this shitty part of the work with Quatre. He perfectly envied Heero who sat on the computer, typing furiously. Computer work was after all much more  interesting than running your fingers through piles of sketches and papers, noting something here and there and trying to memorize anything important.


“Dammit! What are you typing, Heero, you’re getting on my nerves!” he finally complained, looking up from the screen seeing nothing but endless rows of letters and numbers. He was not annoyed, he loved the clicking sound of the keyboard. The only thing that annoyed him was that Heero was typing and Duo himself had to rest on the bed with those damned sheets!


“A program,” Heero answered,  not stopping his endless typing. Duo watched the Perfect Soldier type a while... Heero typed without rest on and on, no expression on his face, a vacant stare at the screen - as far as Duo could see it. Finally  annoyed by all the paperwork, the American got up, opened his braid and started combing his hair. Combing his hair would keep him busy and far from his work for a while.


“Damnit!” Duo swore as he re-opened his braid and started all over again from the top. Finally he managed a perfect long braid which was dangling down from his shoulder right now. He threw his head back and sent the braid flying to his back. Satisfied with his work he smiled at himself in the mirror and left the room trying to find anything to do to avoid the blueprints.


After Duo had left, Heero took a short break from typing, staring at what he had done so far. He glanced at the door which Duo had left open and back on the screen. He saved the program in his folder.


Out in the corridor Duo ran into a concerned looking Trowa. They only stopped briefly looking at each other.

“Someone decorated Nataku with pink hearts. Wufei doesn’t think it is funny...”

Duo raised an eyebrow, feeling somehow accused - though he knew he was not the one to be blamed. It was Quatre who lately had found great pleasure in teasing Wufei, causing the Chinese Gundam pilot one nosebleed after the other. Decorating Nataku with pink shaped hearts was anyway not the kind of prank Duo would consider as tasty. He giggled nonetheless.

“Must have been Quatre!”

Trowa didn’t show much of an emotion. Quatre seems to try to get into trouble with Wufei lately - quite strange for him.  Instead of saying anything, though, Trowa passed Duo towards the bathroom.

Duo became perfectly aware of the fact that there was nothing to do to avoid the sheets and as far as he could guess, the Arabian would have piled up a lot more by now... If he had not been busy teasing Wufei with heart-shaped candy or pictures of pop stars in tight red leather pants.

Sighing, Duo sank down on the bed and grabbed for the pile next to him. Heero, still at the computer, turned around, facing Duo sharply. “Duo, we need to talk!”


The American let go of the pile and looked up confusedly. “Nani? Why?” Heero did not turn his gaze away from Duo, looking straight into those purple eyes that were almost hidden under the long brown bangs. Heero usually was very serious but this time, he seemed pretty rough and possibly angry. It was hard to tell looking at Heero.

“It’s about Wufei. He’s been looking pale lately...”

“I know. I saw it too, I am not blind you know?!” he answered in the typical Duo-annoyed-tone. If this conversation was about Wufei’s constant nose bleeds, Duo would not tolerate being blamed. For once, Wufei’s problems were not his work and if Heero would even try to...

“Stop influencing Quatre to it!” Heero said harshly.

“What?” Duo answered furiously, “Why me? It was Quatre who kept giving him these nose bleeds! Why am I always the only one being blamed - is everything my fault, or what?” Who did this Heero-guy think he was, anyway? He thought he knew everything and beyond that - it was not something Heero should even deal with. It was Wufei and Quatre’s problem... Duo’s anger over the little incident arose.

“You made him act like that,” Heero stated coldly, actually concerned about Wufei’s faintness and pale skin lately. There was no need in weakening Wufei for such a stupid purpose as teasing him, especially not by Duo and Quatre.

“Are you nuts?” Duo answered angrily, “What do I have to do with this? But, oh yeah, of course, the Perfect Soldier is right and I am responsible for everything here. Excuse me, Mr. Perfect, that I even tried to argue with you. How could I ever dare to think it was not my fault! Pah!” Duo left in anger and slammed the door shut behind him, hoping to find a place he could cool off at.


Heero turned back to the computer and returned to typing mindlessly. Letting his fingers do the work, his mind bounced around.  Quatre had been acting a little weird lately.  He assumed must have to do with hanging around with Duo.  The group had about three days to rest up and after first staying in a safe house west of here, they decided it just wasn’t the proper place to spend this time.  Well, Quatre and Duo decided it, for there was nothing at all for them to do there.  So they moved to the quite small house that was located on the outside of a town, giving the two a chance to go and be with others on their time off.  The colony itself was quiet and seemingly unimportant.  But every spare moment he had, Quatre was innocently hounding Wufei, causing the poor pilot to bleed more than Heero had ever seen a person bleed without being shot.  The result of this was a very pale and almost wispy Wufei, and after watching him stand up and nearly fall over when stars danced in his vision, Heero found that enough was enough.  "Hn.“  Duo could be mad all he wanted, it didn’t matter to Heero.  But there was no use in weakening Wufei further, to do so will endanger any mission Wufei may be sent on while he is less than his best.  At least now he figured Duo would say something to Quatre.  Which meant Heero didn’t have to waste time to.


The tall boy walked into the room, eyes finding the old piano.  Narrowing his eyes, he shuffled through papers almost frantically, sincerely hoping Duo hadn’t managed to decimate his music.  Almost desperate, Trowa knelt down to the floor on his hands and knees, trying to feel around under the piano.   Glancing up, his eyes focused on the stack atop the small filing cabinet next to the piano.  Jumping to his feet, he silently sighed in relief and picked the three music books up, hugging them quietly to his chest, eyes closing for a moment.

            “What are you doing, Trowa?” came a sweet voice from behind him.

            Trowa’s eyes opened wide in surprise, reflexively he moved the texts from hugging them to his side, and spun on his heels.  Quatre was seated at the computer and had turned his chair to face him.  Trowa hoped the adorable blond hadn’t noticed his slightly embarrassing actions.

            Training his eyes on the floor, he softly replied.  “Looking for my music.”

            The Arabian smiled brightly.  “I’m glad you found it.”

            Trowa nodded slowly before edging towards the door.  He was always somewhat uneasy in the beautiful pilot’s presence.  He longed to say the two words that beat in his heart, but one look in those soft blue eyes stopped him cold.  He didn’t want to make the blond feel guilty and have something to distract him during battle, especially when it meant life or death...

            “Are you going to practice?”

            Trowa blinked at him before shyly training his eyes on the ground again, moving closer to the door.  He nodded.  “Yes.”

            “That’s nice.  I’m just writing a letter home.  You play the flute, right?  We should play together sometime.  I’d love to have someone to play with, since none of the others have much use for instruments.  I’m happy you do, I’m not alone in it.”

            Trowa nodded.  He softly replied.  “That would be nice.”

            The blond smiled even brighter.  “I’ll let you get to practicing then.”

            Trowa hesitated for a long moment, watching the pilot turn back to the computer.  He finally turned and left, the image of Quatre’s smile burned again bright into his mind.  He hugged the music texts to his chest tightly as he climbed up the stairs, a slight smile on his lips.


            Quatre turned back to the computer, finishing the letter to his friends in Arabia, knowing they were concerned about his safety but he could not quite concentrate. Trowa had picked some very interesting music, including a piece he had loved to play on the violin. He wondered why they had never even tried to pick some music for flute and violin to share the pleasure of making music together. Did the quiet European also feel the satisfaction in Music that Quatre himself knew so well? He shook his head, cleared his mind, and added another paragraph to the letter


            Well, personally, I am fine. I have a lot of time to practice the violin. I am about to make a nice tune for ---- well, someone I like a lot. I might play it for you sometime. So far I am a still working on it, not quite satisfied, you know.


In reality, Quatre only wished he could come up with a tune that would fit to, well, Trowa somehow. Quatre wanted to try to comprehend more of Trowa than he did, he wanted to understand what it must be like for him not to remember having been born into a world without remembering growing up. He hoped music would help him, but besides the fact that he was no composer, he currently lacked any inspiration. 


Quatre eventually got up, checking the time. It was almost time for dinner, and he remembered who was in charge for making dinner that day. He had promised the others to cook! He jumped up from his chair and left the room in a hurry, almost bumping in a still furious Duo and almost knocking him over.

“Sorry, Duo!” he managed to say, looking up at the taller one.

“Where are you hurrying to?”

“I’m in charge for dinner. Tell the other’s they can come in twenty minutes and eat. Ooops... I am kind of late!!!” He smiled nicely and bounced off towards the kitchen. Duo thought about Wufei’s latest nose bleed and wondered how somebody as wicked as Quatre could seem so innocent. It was definitely something Duo could still learn from the young Arabian boy - it would be worth a try.

“Wait, Quatre!” Duo yelled after the blond boy but he was already too far away. Baka, Duo thought. This way I’ll never be able to tell him to stop teasing Wu-man! --- Wait! Why am I anyway trying to do that? Why am I trying to do something Heero Yuy would want me to do!? He kicked against the wall furiously. Screw all those people, really! It’s not my business!!!

His toe hurt but he simply ignored it.


He went back inside his and Quatre’s room that held the computers and Heero, the crazy typer. Furious about Heero, Quatre and the rest of the world, he threw sheets onto piles and books on the shelves. A rather useless attempt to clean up his usual mess because throwing everything into piles did not change much.

Duo’s roaming about disturbed Heero on the computer and since he did not like to listen to Duo’s two hundred complaints he asked where Quatre would be.

“He said, he’d make dinner,” Duo snorted, throwing his bag onto the floor next to his bed.

“I’ll go to the kitchen, and help then,” Heero said tonelessly and got up from his chair.

“Oh sure,” Duo said half-muttering, “He’s all alone as far as I know. He could use some company... Not that you were much company, you’re not really talkative, but at least he won’t be alone.”

Heero ignored Duo’s smart-ass remark and left, leaving the roaming American to himself, carrying stuff inside and outside his and Quatre’s room without showing any sense of order.




Part II

Trowa passed Heero in the corridor.  He watched the silent boy as he walked down the hall towards the kitchen.  He and Heero were sharing a room at this safe house; Heero for some unknown reason, and Trowa to avoid a certain blond beauty.

            Shaking his head at some inner thought, the European  stepped into Duo and Quatre’s room, shutting the door gently behind him.  Duo looked over at him, one eyebrow raised in silent question.

            “I need to talk with you.”  The quiet boy sat on the desk’s chair, facing Duo, who sat on the sofa.

            “Sure, what is it?” Duo shoved the infamously unentertaining blueprints away, much more intrigued by the idea of Trowa talking.

            The pilot stuttered a bit, trying to bring himself to say it out loud.  “Well... this is somewhat difficult, but I want to ask you; do you think Quatre might be interested in boys?”

            Duo looked at him before shrugging and flipping his braid over his shoulder to fiddle with.  He made sure to not grin like a moron on and scare Trowa off; Trowa likes Quatre?  This was an interesting turn of events, much more interesting then a bunch of papers with diagrams all over them.  “Honestly, I don’t think Quatre likes anyone.  Boy or girl.  Why?”  He definitely wanted to be sure he was right on this.

            Trowa sheepishly glanced at the door.  “I like him.”  He didn’t want to share the depths of his feelings with Duo; that way if the braided one takes it up in his mind to play Cupid and Quatre most assuredly didn’t feel the same, at least it would be easier to pretend he didn’t have a “crush” on the blond after a while.

            “Well, then I’ll keep ya posted.  I’ll watch him for ya.  As I said, I can’t imagine Quatre liking either, but don’t lose hope there Tro-man, I’ll keep a close eye on him.”

            “Thank you.”  Trowa wondered briefly when sanity left him to come and ask Duo about such things, and exactly what he was getting himself and Quatre into.  He hoped Duo wouldn’t flat-out stalk the blond pilot, or be too obvious about it when he tells Trowa whatever he observes. 


Duo, for himself, decided to finally put the scribbles and diagrams away: Whatever was going on is this house was much too interesting! It would be much more fun to observe than to draw all his attention towards blueprints. He was surprised, though, why Trowa would tell him such things, and wondered how deep the European’s feelings for the Sandrock pilot really were. If Trowa even started talking to him, Duo...? There just had to be a lot on Trowa’s mind to make him share his feelings with someone else. He wondered whether he should be scared of Trowa or amused. Duo smiled at himself – Trowa and Quatre would be an interesting couple after all. To quietly observe what would become of this, he had to be silent and watch, and he swore himself to do so. And if he could help Trowa at all, he would certainly try his best.

Duo jumped down from the sofa, stuffed the blueprints into some drawer and decided to look for Wu-man, whom he hadn’t seen for a while. He’d better check whether or not the poor Chinese was lying next to Nataku bleeding to death… And maybe there would be chance to talk to Quatre  - No, wait! He was not going to do this because Heero wanted him to!

Duo went to the Gundams, anyway.


Wufei was laughing insanely, the first time Quatre had ever heard the Chinese boy this loud, and NOT lecturing about justice and the like.

            “Wufei?“ the blond was starting to get concerned.

            “You’ve got to see this Quatre!“  He practically dragged the smaller pilot along with him into his and Duo’s room.


            “What’s Wufei laughing at?“

            Quatre giggled-  “The new program by Heero.  You really have to go see it.“

            The European only nodded before walking into the room and sitting down at the computer. A moment later Duo came in.

            “Whatcha doin’?“

            “There’s a new program by Heero.  The others thought it humorous and advised me to look at it.“

            “Oh, musta been the one he just finished.“  Duo leaned over Trowa’s shoulder, his long braid dangling at his side.

            Trowa brought it to screen and the two watched in silence as the program ran.

            Pictures of Duo from various times when the shinigami didn’t know he was being photographed flashed across the screen.  Stolen moments of Duo staring hopefully up to the stars, or when he had his characteristic insane grin in his sleep, even one of him after he had stepped out of the shower, in his pajamas, wet hair falling about his shoulders and he was staring into the foggy mirror, glaring angrily at himself.  When it ended a moment later, both were still quiet.  Duo quickly left the room, leaving Trowa to stare at the blank screen alone, confused.


Duo had blushed intensely, and leaned against the wall to recover. What in hell...! Had this been Heero’s work? What was this boy trying to do to Duo? Confuse him? Tease him? Mess him up? - or could it be that Heero Yuy, the Perfect Soldier...? He didn’t finish the thought, he couldn’t. But for now and always he was sure that this was no laughing matter. If Heero ever found out... he’d kill Duo... if not all of them. Duo decided for himself that he had never seen the program!


            Trowa was surprised at what he had just seen.  He couldn’t determine whether seeing pictures of Duo so... so unlike his normal self or the fact that Heero had taken them surprised him more.

            Movement behind him drew his attention out from inside to the rest of the world.  He glanced back and noted it was Quatre behind him now.  Apparently Duo had left the room. 

            “Did you see the program?” Quatre said, smiling a little.

            “Yes. Duo saw it with me...” Trowa said slowly, not sure what he should be thinking about it. Quatre’s eyes grew wide with emotion.

            “D-Duo saw it?” he asked faintly. Neither he nor Wufei had wanted Duo to see that.

            “Duo happened to be in the room and we just looked at it together.”

            No surprise Duo was so upset when I passed him... Quatre’s thoughts tumbled upside down. If Heero should find out about it, he would be the one to be in trouble!

            “Oh, no! Trowa!!! What can I do now? If Heero find out about this, he’ll kill me!” The little Arabian was really upset. He walked around the room, his hands nervously brushing through his hair and holding his head. “It’s all my fault!”

            “It isn’t your fault, Duo saw it by chance,” Trowa tried to calm the blond beauty who stared at him with anxious, blue eyes. What could he do to make Quatre cool off?

            “Of course it is!” Quatre answered almost hoarsely, “It was me who told you about the new program. Trowa, I didn’t know we weren’t meant to see it! I expected something.... something business-like. I didn’t know...! I shouldn’t even have considered looking at it without Heero’s permission.... Trowa, when Heero finds out about this...” Quatre was making himself more and more upset with his own accusations. Trowa had a hard time coping with the situation. Quatre was not to blame but how could he make him see that?

            “Quatre, don’t upset yourself. It is not your fault.”

            Surprisingly, Quatre stopped and looked into Trowa’s eyes. The blue-eyed Arabian trusted Trowa completely, for some reason he didn’t know himself. He carefully took a step towards him.

“You really think so…?” he asked quietly, giving his confidence into Trowa’s hands.

“Yes, it’s alright.”

“Thank you,” Quatre answered, turning his eyes to the floor, not able to prevent a faint flush of red on his cheeks. It was nice to know that Trowa didn’t think badly of him.

Trowa, not knowing what to do else, and also embarrassed by the situation, left timidly, leaving Quatre to watch him as he disappeared.


A couple of minutes later found Duo upstairs in the mini-walkway from the stairs to the room Heero and Trowa were sharing, sorting through various items in the little cupboard that had been left there for them.  He was immersing himself in the blueprints again, at least collecting the rest of them to have something to do that didn’t involve the other pilots.  A shadow fell over him and he looked up to find just the little ray of sunshine he would have rather avoided.

            Heero and Duo glared at each other a moment.

            “You’re in the way.”

“Maybe the Great Heero Yuy could keep his spandex on for a minute until I finish, or jump over me.” Duo looked back down at his papers.  Silence.  He looked back up to find the patent Heero Yuy Glare’O’Death focused in it’s full majesty upon him.


            “No.  Wait.”  Duo engaged in his pastime of annoying Heero.  Heero, for his part, was annoyed. 

            Why did that baka always make things complicated and confusing?  Why couldn’t he just stay out of his way?  Duo wanted him to just jump over him and ignore it all?  Fine.  He would.

            Placing a hand on Duo’s shoulder, the Perfect Soldier vaulted himself over the other pilot, landing in front of his doorway and heading onto the balcony. 

            He smoothly jumped onto the railing, sitting down so his legs dangled.  That baka wanted him to ignore the confusion, to just go over it all?  Alright, that is exactly what he will do.

            Heero’s eyes trained to the sky.  Movement to the left caught his eye and he watched in silence as a transport ship moved across the sky.  His eyes narrowed- transport ship?  This colony was far enough from danger that it wouldn’t be necessary.  Unless it was a commercial.  More movement caught his sharp eyes.  There were three more transport ships now, moving in the same direction.  To another point on the colony.  This was unusual...  His eyes narrowed.  OZ.

            Heero leaned out off the edge of the balcony, catching a glimpse of the landing point of all these transports.  Three red lights, triangular...


            Heero leaned back, pretending he had just been gazing at the stars as Duo sauntered onto the balcony.


            Duo came over and leaned onto the railing next to Heero.  The two looked down.

            “10 and a half meters.“

            “Hn.  You’re a centimeter off.“  Heero’s gaze never left the ground below, but Duo glanced at him.

            “It’s not enough to kill someone as strong as you.”

            Heero’s deadpan monotone was there as always.  “If one lands straight downwards, feet first, both legs will break.”  Heero surveyed the jump.  If he went headfirst, he shouldn’t be able to survive it...

            But it would not be useful to the war in any event.  It would not serve an objective.  So there was no use thinking about it.  An OZ base...  so close... there could be a large hidden army there, considering that this is such a quiet colony, OZ would have had the time to amass something that would be rather formidable.

            “You can’t though, we need you.”

            Yes, they did need him, getting hurt on a suicidal whim without serving an objective would not be good for the rest of the team.  The same reason for Quatre to not inadvertently weaken Wufei.

            Heero blinked, looking back down at the fall.  An ache in what he assumed was his heart throbbed with a sudden desire to let go of the railing and fall.  He ached to let go and just stop... They could do it, a sudden thought snaked in, they’re more than good enough to continue without you.  Quatre can handle the ZERO system, so why wait?  Jumping off the balcony wouldn’t serve any purpose for the war.  So he would not.  Turning, Heero jumped off of the railing onto the balcony floor.

            “I wonder if it would really matter though...” He said, before leaving the terrace to go back inside.


Duo watched after Heero. He knew he would never jump, but the thought of it scared him a little. He scolded himself for it. What a weakling he had become! He clenched his hand on the banister and shook his head. It was quite normal for Heero to behave strangely, but still, Duo wondered what the young Japanese soldier was up to. This night Duo was sure he behaved particularly strange. Even for being Heero. Was Duo concerned about his friend? No way, Duo told himself. Why should he care...

He watched the stars above, and hardly noticed Trowa stepping out onto the balcony, placing his own hands on the banister and turning his eyes towards the stars. Duo didn’t really feel the need to talk and was surprised by himself.

For a while both pilots watched the stars without talking, just thinking to themselves quietly. Eventually, Trowa was the one to break the silence.

“The stars are beautiful,” he said thoughtfully. Duo couldn’t really tell whether Trowa had been muttering his thoughts or whether he had intended to talk to him.

“Yeah..” Duo answered almost as quietly, “When you’re up there in your Gundam you don’t really care about them... but from down here they look great,” he paused a moment, trying to find the Big Dipper, but was unable to do so. Trowa remained silent.

“I wished there were more up there...” Duo said, brushing over the banister absent-mindedly, “If there weren’t so many lights on the streets here, we’d probably see more.”

“Hm...” Trowa nodded. “They look blue from here,” he stated eventually. Blue, he thought, his mind drifting over to an image of Quatre’s eyes. Duo couldn’t quite understand Trowa’s remark, but agreed to keep the moment alive. It was one of the moments even Duo was fascinated by. A breeze was ruffling both pilot’s hair and there was no more freedom than standing out here on the balcony, talking. Duo looked over to his right. Heero had been sitting there on the rail. Only a black shadow cast against the dark, blue sky. A strange thing to look at.

“Trowa?” Duo asked, taking hold of the moment.


“How fast can one fall in love?” Duo didn’t really know himself why he was asking someone like Trowa about this. Maybe because he knew now that Trowa was in love. They sort of had something in common...

“From the first word...” Trowa remembered very well how he had been caught by Quatre’s sweet, friendly voice the first moment they had ever met. Ever since, the Arabian pilot, his lively character, and the innocence he seemed to hold had been on his mind.

“And if it’s not from the first word?” Duo asked and felt himself shivering a little.

“Anything’s possible,” the Heavyarms pilot answered thoughtfully.

“Good... than it’s normal,” Duo declared to himself, and nodded. He never had even let his mind admit what he really felt for Heero, he had never even left the thought any room in his head – but he knew it very well.

He couldn’t resist the urge to ask... even though it was only Trowa standing next to him, who – after all – was not his closest friend.

“Where’s Heero?”

Trowa had spotted the Perfect Soldier a long while ago, but hadn’t told Duo about it. He looked down into the garden beneath them.

“He’s on the swing.” So Duo Maxwell was interested in Heero? It was definitely not normal for Duo to wonder where anyone else is – especially not Heero. Usually, Duo pretended to be not interested in anyone else but himself. Trowa had not really the mind to deal with it right now. His thoughts whirled around himself and Quatre. This conversation with Duo had surely made him think even more – even though it had just been Duo.

Trowa took a last glance at the stars and then left the balcony.

Duo nodded and said: “Strange...” as Trowa left, thinking about the image of Heero on a swing. Duo himself went after Trowa, his mind dragging him to join Heero in the garden against his own will. But this conversation had revealed other sides of both soldiers, and so it was no wonder that Duo started to admit his interest in Heero.


            Trowa turned from Duo, unable to stay out there any longer.  The stars... they were so beautiful.

            When he saw his vision become blurry, he knew tears would soon follow.  Why?  He did not know.  But there was time enough to figure that out as soon as he was on his own.  The last thing he needed was to give Duo a reason to joke.  It was a nice atmosphere, being with Duo in one of his rare serious moods.  No reason to mess it up. 

            Turning, he muttered something which he assumed was an excuse, wiping his hands at his eyes to get rid of the salty wetness.  Trowa walked as fast as he could down the stairs, secretly hoping he didn’t run into Quatre.  Being called an onna by Wufei, he could deal with that, but having his heart’s desire see him in such a weak state, this would not do.

            Finally making it down the stairs, he practically ran to the bathroom, and locked it.  There.  At least he won’t be asked why he’s locked himself alone in a room.

            Slumping to the floor, Trowa wiped his leaking eyes with the inside of a sleeve.  All he could see in the night sky were thousands of shards of glass, hoping to imitate the wondrous color and warmth in Quatre’s eyes.  Their reflection was pale in comparison to the brightness and beauty of those blue eyes...  Of that radiant smile. 

            Is that why he was crying?  Had the beauty overwhelmed, losing him in it’s tide?  Or was it the knowledge, within the tsunami of brilliant blue, that he would never be the object of that beauty’s gaze and warmth?

            Trowa couldn’t remember; it had happened too fast.  Too soon was he stolen from the dream, and harsh reality now showed itself in the dull illumination of the overhead light bulbs in a bathroom.  He was nothing, what could he offer Quatre?  Himself?  But what kind of gift was that?  He might as well just hand him the wrapping paper- he was nothing but a ghost in an empty shell, drifting in the wind, trying grasp at a past, at a purpose other than killing. 

            Certainly not.  Quatre needs someone as beautiful as himself, someone who was so full of love, hope and dreams as he himself was.  Trowa was none of these.  All he could give was his love.  But what use was the love of a ghost?

            “HEY; OPEN UP!“


            “Trowa, please, I require the use of this lavatory most urgently!“

            “Moment...” Trowa gracefully rose, wiping away tears of lonely and certain despair.  The best he could do was not even burden the blond with it, but instead protect him from afar as much as possible.  Nothing will happen to Quatre as long as Trowa was still alive.

            Trowa almost smiled; the fact blood pumped through his veins was the only way he could tell he was actually living.


            Quatre met a very angry Wufei it the corridor.

            “This is unjust! Can you please tell Trowa to leave this lavatory, I need it! Really bad!“

            Quatre sent a confused look to Wufei, who had disappeared in his room. “Yeah....“

            He should have laughed at Wufei’s behavior but he was simply stunned.


            “Trowa?  Wufei really needs to use the bathroom.  You okay in there?“  A sweet, soft voice called, accompanied by a light knock.

            Trowa wiped his eyes again before opening the door, looking downwards.  “I’m through, Wufei.“  The European walked by, careful to avoid looking at Quatre.  As he climbed the stairs he heard Wufei run in, and the door slam.


Quatre watched Trowa leave. He frowned. Something was wrong with him. Quatre didn’t even care about Wufei dashing inside, he was concerned about Trowa, and the only thing he wished for now was that he could help him. He sighed and shook his head. Trowa would never let him.



Part III


            Meanwhile, Duo had glanced down to see Heero was, in fact, sitting on a swing below him.  Turning, the braided shinigami headed down the stairs and outside.

            Moving with stealth that would have surprised the others, he hid in some shadows, watching the Japanese boy.

            Indeed, Heero was sitting on a swing, alternately looking at the stars, and at the ground.  After a moment, the soldier began slowly swinging.

            Two cities North, at least.  Heero looked back up at the sky as he swung higher and higher.  Hn.  More transports.  They’ve been steadily streaming from location to the west since I first noticed them.  About three in the sky at least, constantly.  Must be a big base. 

            “Kid.“  Duo stepped out of the shadows, arms crossed, a smirk on his face.

            “Baka.“ Heero jumped off the swing, landing in a crouch.  Standing up, he kept his back to Duo.  The familiar ache he felt whenever he was in Duo’s presence started again.  Duo confused him.  Heero didn’t like being confused.  Focusing his mind on the base, he silently added up all the transports, as well as how many dolls and suits were usually aboard per transport till he had a rough figure of about how many there may be at this point in time at the base.  Or at least how many fresh dolls and suits.  Though maybe unnecessary, it gave his mind something useful to do instead of thinking about Duo.


            Duo watched Heero leave. He raised an eyebrow. Sure he was a baka, he knew that. But what stunned him most was that he didn’t mind being called one by Heero. Something was roaming inside him. He hadn’t even received one look from Heero’s eyes, and he could anyway swear, he had felt the same as anytime when Heero’s eyes fell upon him. Insecure, as if he had offered all his weakness to Heero. Was he not suitable to be a Gundam pilot anymore? He almost believed that he had grown too weak for that. He sighed, as the wind pulled on his braid. Sure Heero, I am a baka....


Quatre was already engaged in picking up all the blueprints Duo had thrown around, not regretting anymore than eventually nobody had come to dinner, except for Heero, who had joined him in the kitchen. If they needed to eat, they’d find a whole lot of leftovers in the kitchen. It was getting late though, and Quatre decided for himself that he had by far worked enough for the day. No more sheets of bases, houses, entries and exits...

He felt the strong urge to flee from the world, to stop thinking about anything. Before Heero had joined him in the kitchen, his mind had held no rest. His mind had been set on Trowa. He didn’t even want to know more about the European pilot – he just wanted to be there for him. Quatre couldn’t really explain to himself what this was about. Why should Trowa even need anyone to comfort him? And why Quatre? Quatre felt these thoughts coming back at him, and did not really want them to. It hurt a little, he admitted. He searched for some sheets to play from, but then remembered that Trowa had taken the best tunes upstairs.

He lightly bounced up the stairs, and looked for them in Trowa and Heero’s room, finding them neatly placed on the desk. He had a quick look through them and found the tune he liked so much in one of the books. Unfortunately, Trowa was neither in his room, nor on the balcony. Quatre grabbed a pencil and a sheet – Trowa would certainly not mind if Quatre used his sheet music.


‘Dear Trowa, I borrowed your sheet music. I hope you don’t mind. Quatre’


He placed the brief letter on what he assumed to be Trowa’s bed, and went back downstairs, grabbing his violin to disappear in another world... He carefully tightened the horse-hair on the bow, and tuned the violin. He brushed once over the soft, wooden curves before lightly setting it on his shoulder. The sheet music lay next to him on his bed, the page with his favorite piece opened. He started to play, the bow lightly set on the strings. He remembered every note after the first few measures, closed his eyes and played from his memory.

Anybody could have walked into the room and killed him – Quatre wouldn’t have noticed before it was too late. He imagined himself out on a field with his violin, playing. He softly started to swing with the music, his fingers almost moving by themselves. He wasn’t conscious of what he was playing anymore. He didn’t even notice how strenuous it was to play dynamically, and passionately.

When he had finished the song, he started the next one, some tune that he remembered practicing a long time ago. It was just what came into his mind. A happy tune that left him without thoughts and just the imagination of the sun, and the field. And Quatre was not alone anymore...! Someone was joining in this tune with him, someone playing as lightly, and happily as he himself did. Trowa was there, standing next to him with his flute, looking at Quatre. Quatre smiled at the musician next to him as he put up the bow for another long and difficult line of notes, raising in a slight crescendo. Trowa followed him with his tune.

When Quatre had finished this music as well, he opened his eyes, sleepily. It was like waking up after a dream. All he had now was his empty room, two computers buzzing around him, and the strong wish to play music with Trowa. But the magic of his fantasy had vanished.

Sighing, Quatre loosened the bow and put it and the violin back into the case. He felt strangely empty. He didn’t usually feel like this after playing the violin... what was wrong with him?

I might as well do some work, instead of sitting around here, thinking. He shoveled his instrument under the bed in it’s case and left the room, slowly walking upstairs... the light bouncing in his walk had disappeared with the music. He arched his back to stretch himself, and sat cross-legged on the floor in front of a shelf, grabbing the folders on top of it and sorting them.

Duo passed by, stepped over him and went to another room, a stack of different boxes on his arm. Quatre lightly moved aside to make room for him.

“It is unbelievable a soldier has to do so much paper work...” Duo complained, muttering as he stepped over him.

 Quatre finished quickly, and started checking whether everything was sorted correctly into the shelf. Trowa came just upstairs by then. Feeling someone coming, Quatre automatically looked up from his work to see who it was. As he saw Trowa come in, he immediately remembered his musical vision... He blushed faintly and smiled at Trowa.

“Hey... am I in your way?”

“No, it’s.... okay....” Trowa said, somehow startled. Quatre smiled approvingly, and looked back at his sheets, waiting for Trowa to pass to get to his room. He wondered whether Trowa knew that he had borrowed his sheet music. He hadn’t brought it back yet. He thought about telling him, but it wasn’t necessary, after all. Trowa either had found the letter or he would find it.

After some hesitation, Trowa passed Quatre and disappeared into his room.

As soon as Trowa’s back was towards him, he looked up and watched Trowa go... He sighed lightly, then got up, brushed off his pants and walked downstairs –slowly – towards the bathroom.

Duo crawled out of the shadow... This was indeed interesting. Quatre did indeed seem to have some affection towards Trowa. But of what kind was it?


Trowa stretched his fingers and went over to his flute case.  He caressed it lightly before reaching out a blind hand to pick up the sheet music.  Playing was always a way to lose himself, a way to go beyond this disappointingly empty, and alien world to a place where everything was passionate, familiar and warm.  His eyes narrowed slightly as he touched only a piece of paper.  A piece of paper?

Trowa turned his attention to the paper, and away from his thoughts.  Penned in cute, but still somehow official, neat hand was a message:


‘Dear Trowa, I borrowed your sheet music. I hope you don’t mind. Quatre’


“Quatre...” Trowa caressed the words with his fingertips, before lightly setting the paper back down.  The sheet music was not very important; his fingers and ears knew the songs well.  He didn’t need the written notes to practice.

A hand hooked under his elbow, grabbed him and yanked the poor pilot out of his reverie and practically all the way down the stairs.  Duo yanked Trowa into his room and shut the door.

He turned and saw Trowa’s slightly miffed expression.

The taller boy’s eyes narrowed slightly.  “Duo?”

“I saw Quatre watching you-  I think he likes you.” Okay, he was going out on a limb here, but he could guess how much Trowa cared for the blond pilot and maybe telling him one of his theories would jump-start Trowa into action. 

Duo was curious to see the stoic-one’s reaction.  But to his mild surprise, Trowa shook his head slowly.  His shining, emerald eyes lowered to the floor.  “I’ve accepted it Duo, Quatre does not have feelings for me that same way.”

Duo raised an eyebrow.  “But I’m tellin’ ya, I think he really likes you.”

Trowa looked back up at Duo with those sad, expressionless eyes of his.  “I understand, but please forget it, and don’t give me any false hope.”  The tall boy turned and left, leaving Duo alone.

In the hallway Trowa bumped into Wufei.  “Hey Trowa, do you know where we can get anything to drink in here?  There is only juice in the kitchen.”

The European glanced at the door behind him.  “There may be something in the basement.  I remember the lady who gave us the key mentioning it being finished.”

“Ah, good.”  Wufei opened the door and turned on the lights.  He eagerly went down the stairs, but slowly, still very light-headed.

Shrugging inwardly, Trowa followed after him. 


Out in the corridor, Quatre almost slammed into Wufei. The corridors were too narrow to hold five Gundam pilots without having them slam into each other now and then, he guessed. Wufei held a hand to his nose and his eyes displayed one of the most furious looks Quatre had ever seen on him.


            The Chinese pilot used one of his hands to brush Quatre out of the way, the other hand was trying to catch the blood that was running from his nose. Quatre’s back slammed painfully into the wall. It was the worst nose bleed Quatre had ever seen on Wufei. This time, he was sure someone must have punched him! In addition Wufei looked extremely pale.

            “Wufei!!!” he called again, following him into the room at the opposite of his and Duo’s which had been assigned for Wufei all alone.

            Wufei had made it to the desk, but then his hand held on to his bed, trying to keep himself standing as he slowly sank towards the floor. Quatre ran up to him, supporting his friend’s back. He was pretty sure Chang saw stars by now. The almost white face that he looked into as Chang sat on the floor told him so.

            “Wufei, can I help you somehow?”

            “Curse all of you and this stupid place!!! This is so dishonorable and unjust!” Wufei yelled angrily, another swell of blood coming out of his nose. Quatre thought it was better not to upset him any further. He knew that he was also guilty for Wufei’s anger... not only Heero had told him that. But he had promised to stop earlier that day. The pink-hearts-incident was the last action he had taken to tease Wufei - he hadn’t even wanted to cause a nose bleed by decorating Nataku, even though he could have been sure of that happening.

            “I’m sorry... I shouldn’t have kept on teasing you earlier,” Quatre excused, still holding onto Wufei’s back and handing him a tissue.

            “This has nothing to do with you. I’ve had enough of this place. I’m going to sleep!” he exclaimed, the angry expression on his face not changing one bit. Quatre helped him up nevertheless, even though Chang Wufei’s face color seemed to return slowly, and the nosebleed was about to stop.

            Quatre knew it was better to leave Wufei on his own.

            “Good night,” he said timidly, still feeling guilty.

            Wufei just growled, and cleaned his face with another tissue.


Trowa picked up the green glass bottle, trying to read and understand the German text on it.  He blinked.  He didn’t know he could speak German.  Well, at any rate, he knew what he wanted to know now; it was indeed mineral water.

He slowly twisted off the cap and began to pour some water into his glass.  He didn’t know if Wufei liked mineral water... he didn’t even know if he liked it himself.  But, ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’ as the old saying goes.  Interesting question though, he’d have to ask Wufei sometime.  That is, assuming he’d be able to get him into the basement again...




It was just then when Duo passed him.

“Hey Duo, what happened to Wufei? He ran into me with a major nosebleed and was extremely angry.”

Duo shrugged, “Ask Trowa, they went down into the basement together.”

Quatre nodded, and opened the door to the basement. “Hey Trowa!!!” he called loudly and hopped down the stairs. Somehow the old ease had returned to him.

Quatre found his friend downstairs standing on the side of the bar with a glass of water. And although he had dashed down the stairs before, he slowed his pace down as soon as he spotted him. There was a calm atmosphere down in the basement, and he didn’t want to disturb it.

“Hey Trowa, what happened to Wufei?” he asked timidly.

“Look at the door.” Trowa did not turn around, but Quatre believed he heard a slight smile in his voice.

”Nani?” What did a door have to do with all this? He went backwards and opened the door again. Something was written on there in German, some sort of list. It was decorated with party scenes. Different rooms were drawn there and a lot of people were naked.

Ew… Quatre thought, and went back inside. This was somewhat tasteless.

He sat down on the other side of the bar and watched Trowa play with a toothpick-picker. It was a little red bird that picked up a toothpick in it’s beak if one pushed it’s head down. Quatre watched, the familiar trust came up in him again; the same trust he had felt when Trowa had told him, that he was not guilty for letting Duo see Heero’s program. The trust he couldn’t explain, but which he could totally relax into. He would tell Trowa almost anything and he had to remind himself that it isn’t always the best thing to be totally open towards someone. Especially when one’s own feelings where not likely to be returned.


Trowa, oblivious as always, was completely absorbed in the small object within his hands.  What type of bird is this?  What was it’s purpose?  The riddle was turning in his head, the item so seemingly simple was perplexingly out of his grasp of understanding.  Who could have possibly created this sculpture of plastic?  Was it some great artist he had never heard of, or even if he had, forgotten?  Wait, there was a glint of metal.  Metal in a plastic sculpture?  Was it some extremely intricate bomb or piece of artillery?  Or was it a cleverly created sound system device, or visual, to record the pilots when they least expect it?  Hm, the metal looked to be some sort of hinge.  Judging by the design and direction of the coil, it appeared it twisted downwards.  But why?  What was the purpose of a coil spring in a sculpture?  What does it mean?  Carefully, cautiously, Trowa pushed downwards on the bird.  Easily, it leaned downwards.  At that precise moment, a hidden compartment slid out from under the base of the bird’s perch, a sliver of wood sitting on it.  In silent, inward amazement, Trowa watched as the bird’s beak went around the sliver of wood.  Trowa removed his finger and the bird swung, the compartment disappearing into the perch, but the sliver of was triumphantly held in the bird’s plastic, red beak.  With gentle, wondering fingers, Trowa removed the sliver of wood, looking closely at it.

What now, then, was this?

“Quatre, what is this?”

“It’s a toothpick.”

“A toothpick... but what do you do with it?”  Trowa looked now at Quatre, expressionless, but curious.  His voice held the innocent wonder of a child.  He then looked back to the sliver of wood in his fingers.

“Um, well, you pick stuff out of your teeth with it.”

Trowa turned his attention back to the plastic bird and it’s stand.  “And this?”

“A tooth-pick dispenser.  It’s kind of cute, as you saw, you press down the birdy and it gets you a toothpick.”

“Hm.”  Trowa didn’t know whether to feel embarrassed  or haunted; he didn’t even recognize a simple toothpick...


Quatre began starting to wonder why Trowa would ask that, when he suddenly felt his own lively smile vanish from his face. He understood and it made him sad: Trowa could not remember. Maybe he had never seen a toothpick since he had awoken in Catherine’s arms?

“You don’t remember, huh?” he asked sadly.

Trowa simply shook his head. The toothpick dispenser was still in his hands.

“I’m sorry...” Quatre tried to understand what it must feel like to know to have something as simple as toothpicks in your hand and not remember what it was.

“Wufei’s alright?”  Trowa pushed the little bird down and took the new toothpick.  Idly, he pushed the dispenser away and took a drink from his glass.  Kind of bitter, but he found he liked the fizzing sensation of the water.

“Yeah, I hope so. He was extremely angry and decided to go to sleep...” and Quatre was not sure after all, whether Wufei really was alright or not.

“I’m just happy he didn’t see this.”  Trowa nodded to a poster behind Quatre.

Quatre turned around and looked at an extremely tasteless poster showing men playing soccer with only one protection...

“Ew…! He’d have died on his nosebleed!” he said, laughing some.

Trowa silently enjoyed Quatre’s sweet laughter, watching the small blond before nodding slightly and taking a sip.  Knowing Quatre’s family owned most of the safe houses they’ve stayed in, he assumed this must be another one of theirs, and so attempted a joke.

“What’s wrong with you Arabians then, to have posters like these?  Are all you Arabians like that?” he asked quietly, his voice expressionless as always.

Quatre had let his eyes slide across the room and see more of this ... tasteless stuff ... and turned his eyes back to Trowa. With an almost painful expression, he pressed “Nani?” out of his throat. “No!” he protested, not being able to get rid of the expression, “I mean... I can’t really know. I was taken from Arabia too early to know...”

Trowa’s eyes widened slightly, not enough to really be noticed.  K’so, he really shouldn’t try to tell jokes...  “Gomen Quatre, I was just trying to joke, I did not mean it that way.”  He looked back at the plastic bird, then to the toothpicks in his hand.

“Never mind,” Quatre answered pulling his emotions back into himself.

Trowa nodded and took a drink of the mineral water.  It was so pointless...  He was reminded again from Quatre’s reaction that he was just a ghost, a shell.  No wonder he’d upset Quatre, he might as well have been lecturing about bricks for all of the comedic inflection he spoke with.  Softly, “I can’t tell who is more empty... me or Heero.”

Quatre looked to the side... it was exactly what he had been wondering about and never found a conclusion to. He was ashamed that he had said he’d been taken from Arabia too early when other people had had a fate much worse than his! He didn’t want to remain silent, so he tried to tell Trowa what he thought:

“I... wonder, too. I mean, Wufei saw his whole family blow up in front of him. I am scared when I just think about that this could happen to me...” he told Trowa and tried to make his face look neutral, but how would he be able to cache the pain in his eyes? He tried to look away from Trowa.

Trowa stared at the toothpicks in his hand.  He barely stopped the words before they touched his lips, but instead he silently vowed them  I will never let me harm what you hold dear.  Instead, he spoke other thoughts.  “True.  I don’t know which is worse, knowing your family before they were killed, not ever having a family, or not knowing if you ever did and whatever may have happened to them.  There are drawbacks to each.”  Trowa to a drink from his glass.  His own constant pain haunted him but he remained silent about it and kept his expressionless mask in full.

Quatre scolded himself... Quatre you fool. What you said sounds as if you didn’t try to understand him at all.

“I... don’t know. Whatever Heero’s fate is... it might be worse, who knows except Heero? Wufei had a really horrible fate but it might probably be better to have known you had a family, than not to remember. I would be so scared to wake up some day, and not remember.” Quatre looked at Trowa, and once again scolded himself. With his speech he must have made Trowa even more desolated and sad about his own fate. “I mean, maybe you can’t really compare those... fates.” Don’t I have anything positive to say? Quatre thought desperately. All he was doing here was talking on and on, and nothing but nonsense. He couldn’t stand looking in Trowa’s eyes any longer.

Quatre slid down from the chair, and made it for the door, passing Trowa. He didn’t look at him, but brushed a hand over his shoulder.

“I’m sorry, I am always behaving stupidly in your presence...” he said quickly before the tears came streaming down his face, and he ran upstairs.

Trowa watched him, wondering what he could have possibly done to upset Quatre so much.  He stood up to go and apologize, but he stopped.  All he would probably end up doing is making Quatre even more upset.  He closed his eyes, his back to the doorway, still in the shadows of the bar.  A hand softly, then firmly clasped the part of his shoulder where Quatre had touched him, and the other clasped the toothpicks tight.  He had the sweet moments of talking with Quatre, and even the feeling of being touched by the blond beauty.  Trowa’s mind went far from this place, losing himself in a sort of trance.


Duo went down into the basement to get something to drink. As far as he knew, this was the only place to get something. Right in that moment, Quatre came dashing up the stairs, crying. Duo had not expected anything like that, but the tear-streamed face didn’t look very nice on the Arabian.

Quatre looked up at Duo, not even trying to hide the tears.

“Duo!“ he exclaimed, and fell up the stairs. Duo moved quickly enough to catch Quatre under his arms, the blonde’s head bumping onto Duo’s chest. Duo clenched his teeth at the unexpected pain on his chest, but comforted himself with the thought that Quatre must feel even worse. He pulled the boy up the stairs.

„Quatre?!“ he whispered lightly. He didn’t receive a reply, Quatre was unconscious. Duo wondered what exactly had happened to the boy, as he shouldered him and carried him to their room. He carefully let him slide down onto the bed.

Poor boy... he thought, just because Quatre indeed looked poor. He snatched a package of tissues from the table, and wiped the tears off of Quatre’s face. He didn’t move a bit, but was breathing normally. Duo decided it was the best to leave Quatre sleeping peacefully, and maybe not even consider asking him for the reasons.

He closed the door carefully and proceeded downstairs for something to drink.

He walked in on Trowa who was standing there, close to the bar with toothpicks in his hands.

“Feel the need for playing?“ he asked smiling and starting to pour his glass.

Trowa hadn’t expected anyone to come downstairs, and let the toothpicks fall onto the floor in shock. Duo didn’t really take note of this, he was too busy finding the right thing to drink. He went for juice in the end.

“Yeah,“ Trowa finally answered, holding up a toothpick. “Toothpicks...“

Fortunately, Duo didn’t notice the other pilot’s confusion.

“Have you seen Quatre?“ Trowa asked suddenly after he had picked up all the toothpicks.

“Yeah. He came upstairs, and collapsed right into my arms,“ Duo answered dryly, “I put him on his bed for some sleep.“

“It’s not good...“ Trowa said looking at his toothpicks, “I confuse him.“

            Trowa left on that. Duo stared after him, and finally started to think. Something had been happening...



Part IV


            Quatre remembered very well: He had been running upstairs, crying in confusion and had ran directly into Duo. He was just glad someone was there, and gave in to all emotions. He remembered falling down, and being caught somehow. Then he must have blanked out.

            He had woken up dizzily on Duo’s shoulder, but couldn’t move. He let the American take care of him and fell asleep again when he rested on the bed.


            Then there was an explosion... Fire, everywhere. Sandrock was shaken roughly from it. Quatre moved his glasses up so they were stuck in his hair, and watched. He couldn’t move. He just knew that somewhere in this fire, his family had been... and those he called friends. He shook with anger and pain.

            “NO!” he cried out, and lowered Sandrock on what remained of what he had called home before. Another explosion shook the Gundam, and pressed Quatre into his seat. His eyes searched for the place it came from so he could move away from it.

            Right behind him the flames went up - he jerked Sandrock around, and let him stalk backwards. Someone was in between all these flames. Someone was standing there.

            “Goodbye, Quatre...“ a voice said. It was Trowa. Quatre understood that Trowa was in the center of the explosion.

            “No! Trowa! Not Trowa!“ Tears streamed down his face, but it was all too late. Trowa was dead. Quatre clenched his teeth, and grabbed the side of his seat tightly, watching the explosion die down leaving nothing but a desert behind.

            “Trowa...“ he mumbled crying. Then he looked up to the sky. Stars were blazing and blinking from up there. “WHY?“ Quatre yelled at them. He couldn’t understand why someone would be able to take his family, as well as Trowa, from him. It was too cruel.

            His fingers brushed the one button that would destroy him and Sandrock, and rid him of all the pain but he was not supposed to do that. He drew his hand back as the pain hit him again that he had lost Trowa.

            “TROWA!” he yelled up and yanked himself out of his dream.


Trowa blinked from his perch on the piano seat.  He had come in to find the blond lying on the bed and in what seemed to be a fitful sleep.  The tall pilot had simply sat down, crossed his legs and watched.  He didn’t find it his place to wake the boy up; he didn’t want to interfere.

But anything he might have thought of to say melted as soon as Quatre muttered something couldn’t hear and blinked open those big, tear-filled eyes at him.  All words fell from him as he saw the pain-filled look in his pale face, the tears streaming downwards.  Quatre made no move to wipe them away and the two pilots just looked at each other.  Emerald eyes met bright blue ones.

Trowa broke the moment first, looking downwards into his own lap.  His heart wrenched from seeing such a hurt and vulnerable Quatre, and he fought his body’s urge to go over to the blond pilot, hold him and try to comfort him with physical affection of even that innocent kind.  Mizu me....

“Trowa... you were here the whole time?“ Quatre’s voice was a little weak, and he sniffled as he rubbed his wet cheeks dry.

Trowa didn’t look up, but only nodded.  “Gomen if you wanted privacy...“ Trowa stood up, near the doorway, but unwilling to leave.

“Trowa...“ came a soft reply.

Trowa looked up and their eyes met again.  Quatre gave a little half-smile, obviously still affected by whatever had occurred in his dream, but gave the smile nonetheless.

“It’s nice to know there’s someone there, watching over...“

The European couldn’t make the muscles in his throat work properly, so he simply nodded before leaving.  He leaned against the wall outside the room for a moment before going up the stairs to his own.  Those words from those sweet lips meant more to him than he could even express correctly.  In dreams alone was Quatre his.



            Quatre didn’t want to sleep anymore! He was scared of falling asleep again. He had made some strong tea for himself to keep him awake, and was now sitting in front of the computer. He could never do it. He would disturb everything if he told Trowa that he loved him!

            “Duo,” Quatre asked. “Can you leave me alone for a second...”

            Duo shrugged, “Sure,” and moved to the corridor.

            Quatre leaned back, drank some of the tea and closed his eyes. Well, here he was now... Thinking about Trowa. He sat the teacup back on the table and sat up straight, his fingers brushing over the keys. Slowly; he didn’t really know what to write.


            ‘How can it be so hard? How am I supposed to even say that? Ai Shiteru... it sounds so easy. I cannot even guess what will be the consequences... I'll never be able to look at him again. And I am longing so to say it... Trowa, Ai Shiteru.


How can I walk around and not speak to him? I wish to take his sorrow... if I could do anything to bring back his memory. He's suffering. And I'm suffering with him. Anything I would do, except one thing that I can't say. "Trowa," I can't say, "Ai Shiteru."’


            It was the painful truth.



            Trowa gazed at those bright stars.  He had picked up the habit of talking to the stars over the past few months.

            The European had once again sought out their company.  Leaning his chest on folded arms, he let his weight totally fall onto the railing as he stared out at the dark expanse.

            “You’ve heard me say it a thousand times, and you will hear it come from my lips a thousand more.  Ai shiteru Quatre, for whatever it may be worth, and no matter how little it matters, I will always do so.  Ai shiteru, mizu me, ai shiteru...”.

            “Trowa?” that achingly sweet voice from the doorway of his room called.

            Trowa continued to stare at the night sky.  The blond pilot walked out onto the balcony.  Trowa didn’t turn around, he might have blurted out his mute love to more than stars, should his eyes fall upon the one he had nicknamed mizu me.

            “Trowa, have you seen Duo?”

            “I believe he is outside somewhere.”

            “Well, if you see him, let him know I’m off the computer and he can use it now.”

            “Of course...”

            With that, Quatre turned and left, disappearing downstairs somewhere.  Trowa didn’t turn around.  Instead he closed his eyes, letting the lights of the twinkling stars and glowing moon light his face.  He lips moved in a quiet whisper, unable to bring his voice loud.  But he knew the night would hear him, the sky would hear him, the rolling wind that carried dreams with it would hear his quiet plea, call and vow.

            “Ai shiteru, mizu me.... ai shiteru....”

            Trowa slowly turned and went back into his shared room. Sitting on his bed, the tall boy picked up the returned music books and held them tightly to his chest in embrace, his chin resting on the top of the books.  Laying down, he still clutched those toothpicks in one hand, and the texts in his arms. 

These two items were the closest he could ever come to touching Quatre, holding him and being held in return.  Fatigue from non-stop missions caught up to his now prone body and sleep claimed him but no dreams of his precious mizu me came to him.              


Meanwhile, a certain Heero Yuy was alone in the bathroom, one of the lights dimly bringing in some brightness to see by.  He was watching a small figure in the mirror, leaning silently and smoothly closer to bring the figure into close perspective and also testing how close he could get without disturbing the living figure.

The fly didn’t seem to mind at all and went about it’s business of washing it’s legs.

Heero watched it in utter silence, not an eye batting.  But inside his mind echoed the small words: “It’s alive and I’m not going to kill it...  He was amazed by the prospect.  Not only was the creature seemingly bouncing off the walls with life, but he didn’t have to put an end to that life.  In fact, he could actually watch it, observe that life.  The fly allowed him so close to actually watch it intimately, letting him in on it’s little rituals without fear of attack.  It trusted him...
            Trusted him?  It trusted him not to end it’s life.  It trusted him to let him close.  Anyone who had ever trusted him so much had ended up dead by his hands.  But this time was different.

This time he didn’t have to break that trust in a brutal way.  He didn’t have to...  The fly was very alive, more alive than he had ever been.  And he was very content to watch that life, to not interfere.  He had observed such ‘life’ in the baka, Winner, Chang and even Barton.  But himself?  No.  But this fly... if even this fly could be alive, could he be the same?

Would Duo like him better if he could somehow have the same life as this fly?  Would Duo like him at all?

Heero moved a little closer.  The fly twitched but continued cleaning it’s wings.  This life... it would be so easy to take it, and to dismiss the disturbing thought, the disturbing wish, to switch places.

He would never be anything to that baka then a doll of the scientist’s, a walking weapon.  Which he was.  He didn’t understand anything other than that.  Life... did he have any of it?  The life that makes Duo’s amethyst eyes sparkle, those enticing lips grin, his voice lively, friendly and joking all in one?  No.  He did not.  The fly was better suited company for the baka then himself.


The Japanese boy stayed there, motionless, for a long while, all track of time slipping away, as he watched the fly on the mirror.       


((Clees: Yes, for all those who doubt, I actually did stand in the bathroom for about forty five minutes watching that fly...))


            Kicked out of his own room, great. Duo was just happy that Quatre wasn’t sleeping and crying anymore. He patted him softly as he walked by, and opened the door to the garden.

            It was night, and the fresh smell of grass tickled his nose. Actually, the night was too nice to accompany all the misery that seemed to haunt the soldiers this night. There was Wufei who was pissed off and angry, Duo recalled. And then, there were Quatre and Trowa having their own problems, obviously. And so did Heero. Heero and Trowa seemed kind of okay, but after all, they were naturally calm. It was very well possible that they suffered as much as Quatre. Duo didn’t even try to ask himself what everyone was suffering about. He went over to a tree and stared into space.

            And what about myself? he asked. He sighed lightly as he leaned a hand against the tree. He couldn’t deny that he was suffering in his own way, too. This program Heero had constructed confused him. He should have been embarrassed that each one of the soldiers had seen him in his pajamas or angry with himself that he hadn’t noticed he had been photographed. He should especially be angry with Heero Yuy for having done this. But Duo knew very well that he was not. He knew he was confused, and he knew that knowing about the program made him hope somehow. Hope for what? He could not really define it. Maybe I can, he told himself, if I just admit to myself that I love Heero. Something punched his stomach as he thought that, just because it was true. He wanted to be close to Heero, and he wanted to lay in his arms and just be close to him. Heero was beautiful and unique, and Duo knew it... but how could he ever understand it himself? He searched for his braid on his back, and yanked it over his shoulder to start nibbling at its end.

            The fact that Heero either had the same feelings, or hated him so much that he intended to mock him whenever possible, made the whole strange situation even more thrilling. Duo jumped down from the bench he had been standing on and sighed. He decided to explore the rest of this beautiful garden, and walked over a bridge that lead to the other side of  the little stream of water someone had carefully designed in the garden. He looked up, and almost fell backwards onto the bridge when he saw the black outline of Heero sitting on the edge of the balcony. Heero was staring down at the soil as far as Duo could see it.

            He is not thinking about jumping down there, and kill himself, again, is he? Duo wondered. He held out his arms as if to catch Heero if he intended to fall down.


            Heero turned off the lights as he entered the room.  His eyes were still a little bit dry from staring at the fly without blinking for so long.  He noticed that Trowa was curled up with that natural cat-like grace only he possessed, and turned off the lights so the European could sleep in darkness.

            He walked past the bed, out onto the balcony.  Hopping up onto the rail of the opposite side he had been on before, he stared straight ahead.  OZ.  The base was almost directly in front of him, if not a bit to the west.

            Adjusting himself, he swung both legs out from under himself and onto the other side of the railing, hooking his feet around a bar, and leaning forward as much as he could without falling.  His dark eyes were, once again, focused on the ground.  He would survive the fall, that was obvious.  But that didn’t mean he could be careless and afford to fall; if he was going to do something about the base, he would need to be in working order.  It was tempting nonetheless... a little pain of the physical sort would give him something else to think about besides Duo and the confusion that follows with that subject.

            The wind blew in his mop of hair and he closed his eyes, breathing in deeply.  The wind was always moving, always free, always alive and laughing.  Always playful and smelling as it only it can, always only a little bit out of reach, but close enough to tempt you to linger in hope anyway...  wait....

            Am I thinking about the wind still, or Duo?


“What if I catch you?“

            Heero opened his eyes.  His gaze focused in on the shadowy figure he hadn’t noticed before.  Was it Duo, or were his eyes playing tricks on him still from being devoid of moisture?  No, it was the baka himself, arms out wide as almost an invitation to be hugged.

            For a moment, Heero almost imagined jumping just so he would have an excuse to fall into the annoying American’s arms, but dismissed it as soon as it came.  It confused him... risk being ready for a mission for Duo?

            He narrowed his eyes in irritation.

            “Can’t you just be quiet for once?“


            Duo snorted a little. Heero had again succeeded in upsetting Duo. Could he not for once be nice to him? Instead all he did was yell at Duo. Suddenly, Duo thought that even the program could have been nothing else than a joke. Fine, he thought, ignoring the pain it caused.

“No I cannot be quiet, because I am Duo Maxwell. Not everyone can be as talkative as you, great Heero Yuy. I just have to talk on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on, you know?!“


“Hn.“  Heero ignored the inane, rather wordy comment and watched as more transport ships flew towards the base.

            “Was I supposed to see the program?“

            “Specify.“ Heero narrowed his eyes and looked back to the menace below.

            “You know what I’m talking about. Don’t make me repeat myself.“

            “There is more than one program, specify.“

            “The one with me- the one you finished today.  All the others saw it.  Were we supposed to?“

            “Doesn’t matter now, you all already saw it.“

            “I want to know!“

            “Don’t be upset by their laughing, they were laughing at me.“  Heero looked back up to the sky, not offering an explanation for the program.

            “No they weren’t- they were laughing at me.“

            Heero looked back down and the garden was empty once more.

            Heero flipped off the railing to the balcony floor and sat with his back against the wall, knees bent, ankles crossed and his arms wrapped around his knees.  As long as the braided baka couldn’t see him, he’d assume Heero wasn’t there and would leave him in peace.  Heero didn’t like the weird ache Duo apparently evoked in him, nor did he like the confusion that came with it.  At least when he couldn’t see the shinigami, he could manage to focus on something else, something he could understand; like battle plans, strategy, orders and statistics.




Quatre had only very slowly finished the tea. He had taken a long bathroom break, not wanting to fall asleep after all. No way he would go back to sleep before morning, not while he was so confused and upset.

            Maybe he should just go upstairs to see Trowa and tell him... something. Tell him, maybe, that he really was thankful to know Trowa was caring about him while he slept. That he was caring at all. He could not tell him how thankful he was and that he would have loved to have more of that. But maybe letting him know would somehow release the weight of Quatre’s heart.


            Assuming that Trowa was on his balcony, Quatre went through Trowa and Heero’s darkened room and looked.

            “Trowa...?” he whispered.

            “He’s sleeping on his bed,” Heero’s voice answered, “Be quiet.”

            Quatre walked backwards three steps and glanced inside the darkness of the room. Right, there he was, sleeping on his bed. How could Quatre have missed him? Something ran through him as he saw him sleeping there, all crouched in on himself.

            He decided to go back outside. Hopefully, Heero’s company would keep him awake.

            “May I sit down?” he asked Heero, who was sitting on the floor. Heero nodded silently and Quatre fell flat against the wall, and sank to the floor next to Heero, somehow exhausted.

            There was a long, lasting silence. Heero was not a person one could talk with, and Quatre couldn’t think of anything to say. Somehow the nightly silence and sitting with someone on the balcony, not being alone, was satisfying in its own, strange way.

            “Why aren’t you sleeping?” Heero finally asked.

            “Can’t. Why aren’t you?”

            ”I never do.”

            Quatre didn’t believe it, of course. Even the Perfect Soldier needed sleep, although he liked to pretend he didn’t.

“I wished I could sleep like Duo! He’s asleep and he sleeps like a stone!”

They fell back to silence again.

            Surprisingly for Quatre, it was Heero again who broke the silence after a long while.

            “What were you laughing at?”

            Quatre blushed, and was just happy that Heero could not possibly see that in the night. Did he know about them having seen the program?

            “Er... it was something that Duo did...” he said, “something stupid.” He hoped Heero did not really want to know.

            “What?” Heero inquired further.

            Quatre did not like this conversation at all. He remembered that he was the one who started all the problems by telling Trowa that Heero had written a new program. And he could not come up with anything Duo could have done that was stupid enough to cause Wufei to laugh in the way he had been laughing.

            “Um... Duo doesn’t want me to tell you. It’s embarrassing.. and anyway it isn’t that important.” Quatre knew that he was not very convincing. His voice practically waited for Heero to jump up and pin him against the wall, threatening to seriously hurt him.

            ”Quatre?” Heero said.

            “Huh?” Quatre tried to sound as innocent as possible. It was, after all, the only thing he was good at. It didn’t work this time.

            “You are a miserable liar.”

            Quatre blushed deep red. Worse than feeling Heero’s anger was feeling his sadness. Certainly he must be disappointed that he couldn’t trust the other pilots to keep away from his stuff. And how disappointed Heero must be to have heard them even laugh about all this...

            “I am sorry...” Quatre said quietly.

            To his surprise Heero answered, “It’s okay.”

            Still Quatre felt the need to defend himself: “I thought it was something that would help us against OZ, something official, you know. And... well, I know I should have asked you before. I am such a moron, I am sorry. And after Wufei and I had looked at it, the other’s found out about it, too. And Duo, he saw it by accident... we didn’t mean for him to see it.”

            “Quatre,… it’s okay,” Heero repeated firmly.

            Quatre fell silent and nodded. He felt so ashamed. He got up and left.  



Fog swirled around completely, effectively blocking all sight.  Figures moved and screams could be heard.  Trowa blinked.
            He was in the cockpit of Heavyarms, staring out blankly at the surrounding gray.  He was sweaty with... fear?  Maybe.

            Then he felt it take him over.  Yes, he was deathly scared.  His heart pounded in his ears, he was breathing so hard he felt he must surely make himself choke on the air he gasped in and out.

            Overwhelming guilt and despair sunk into him.  Something was happening out there, and he could do nothing.  He was frozen with fear, his knees literally shaking, as screams and blasts met his ears.  He was acting like a child, not the nameless warrior he knew he was.  Not the stoic, controlled pilot who fought until he collapsed.  A terrifying thought struck him...

            But I am a child!!!!

            That’s right... he was a child, a teenager.  But he was nothing like that.  He knew this isn’t how the seasoned warrior he knew himself to be would conduct himself.  His mind was adult in every shape and form, there simply was no other way for him to be except.  All he had was fighting and... and... dreams...

            Dreams of peace, dreams of violence and dreams of Quatre... Quatre...


            Trowa looked up, and noticed the gray in front of him wasn’t being swirled around anymore.  He flew over.  It was a battle.  Or what remained.

            While Trowa was freaking out, Sandrock had been battling many mobile suits... too many.  The Gundam was now battling another, when Wing Zero flew in, looking just as battered.

            “Last one.” came Heero’s monotone voice.

            As Trowa watched, Sandrock began losing.

            “Trowa, you can hit the suit without hitting Sandrock.  Do it, the rest of us can’t aim that precisely.”   Duo’s voice ordered.

            “He’s right, do it.”

            Trowa tried to aim, but he became unsure each time.  Critical moments passed and Sandrock was obviously not going to win. 

            “Why are you hesitating, you weakling, do it now!”

            “I...I can’t get a lock...”.

            “Trowa, do it or Quatre dies.” Heero threatened.

            Just then Sandrock took a critical blow and the circuits around it’s self-detonation began sparkling dangerously.

            “NOW OR I’LL KILL YOU MYSELF!” Wufei screamed through the comlink.

            Sandrock began to glow dangerously as the mobile suit scored it’s last winning blow.

            “Oh my god...!” Duo gasped.

            Sandrock literally blew up some, falling to pieces on the ground.

            Trowa’s eyes widened as he saw a pale, ash and oil-smudged body fall to the ground...



            Trowa woke with a start, sitting straight up, breathing deeply to try and calm himself down.  After a couple of minutes, he registered it was dark.  Someone must have turned off the lights.  Bed...?

            The European looked down beneath him and saw he was indeed on his bed, sheet music and toothpicks in a desperate embrace.

            I must have been asleep...

            Carefully, he leafed through the texts, pausing to lightly run his fingertips over the soaring notes.  He watched the notes with haunted green eyes.  He didn’t remember what the dream was about...  And even if that was perfectly normal, it was still too ironic for him bear.


Quatre found Trowa still sleeping on his bed. It was now that he noticed that Trowa held the sheet music and several toothpicks clenched close to his body. He wasn’t sleeping well, but Quatre knew it would be a bad idea to wake him.

            He sat down on the floor, watching the Heavyarms soldier slightly shiver and moan in his sleep. Quatre watched in pain. It hurt him to see Trowa like this. He got up and walked over to his bed. He reached out a hand to touch him, or to brush over his hair, but he didn’t dare to. How would he explain it to him if he woke? He didn’t even dare to tell the sleeping Trowa that he loved him. He was too afraid that Trowa could hear him. He stalked backwards, and tried to sit down on a chair as silently as possible.

            Trowa started moving more, and more. Quatre wondered whether Trowa felt alike... whether he would appreciate someone being close when he slept, just as Quatre himself did. Maybe, he thought, maybe he hated people watching him sleep? What would he say when Trowa woke up?

            Quatre had no time to figure that out... Trowa sat up in bed. Quatre held his breath. Trowa’s back was towards him, and Quatre was perfectly helpless! Should he talk to him and show him he was here, or wait until Trowa noticed him.

            All he could see was Trowa flipping slowly through the music sheets and brushing his fingers over the music, gently. Once again Quatre could feel how much he longed to share the pleasure of making music with Trowa. Trowa was totally engaged in the sheets. It seemed very emotional to Quatre. What if Trowa turned around now? He would definitely be embarrassed that Quatre had seen him like this. He would possibly be angry because it is not a very fine manner to watch people sleeping. The last thing Quatre wanted to provoke was Trowa’s anger.  He silently slid out of the chair, and into the corridor. From there he dashed down the stairs just for the purpose to get far, far away from Trowa before he would notice. Oh no, he could never tell him!



Part V

            Decisively Heero sat down at the computer and opened a new, empty file.  He couldn’t just sit around with the enemy so close.  He couldn’t just sit around with Duo so close...

            Shaking his head, he began typing a mission request.  All he wanted was this to be the last mission.  Last mission.  He could accomplish something for the objectives as well as stop the confusion and aching all at the same time.  Quatre could handle the ZERO system and so he wasn’t as necessary as before.  He was expendable.  Very well, this is something he will use to his advantage.

            Finishing, he  sent it to the scientists’ and awaited the confirmation.  Heero turned in the chair and noticed Duo sleeping behind him on the sofa that served as his and Quatre’s bed.  He stood up, and was about to leave, when his gaze was once again trapped by Duo’s sleeping attractiveness.

            Slowly, he came close, just as before with the fly.  And like the lively fly, Duo let him close and kept on sleeping.  Heero’s hand reached out on it’s own and gently feathered across Duo’s hand before lightly caressing his hair.

            Heero’s eyes widened as he came to his senses and realized what he was doing.  Pulling his hand back as if he had touched a hot burner, the soldier turned and left the room, going into the dark bathroom, seeking company from the fly who had let him be close and trusted him.  But this time the fly was gone.

            Sinking onto the floor, Heero hugged his knees to his chest and rubbed closed eyes on the tops of his knees.  He was so confused.  Why did his hand do that?

            Why had he liked that.....?

            And where the hell is the fly?


Duo woke up, weary. He just noticed that he couldn’t stay asleep for long. Something inside him woke him up after what seemed about less than fifteen minutes. He couldn’t get much sleep tonight. Maybe it was because the others were roaming about. Maybe it was because Heero was still roaming about, or maybe it was that pain that kept piling up inside him ever since he had become aware of the fact that Heero would do nothing else with him – ever – than annoy him or yell at him.

He stretched and noticed he was tensed.  Had he dreamt? Could a human being even dream in the fifteen minutes of a nap? K’so! He should get a healthy amount of sleep, but he didn’t feel that this was possible.

“Sleeeeeeeep...!” he stretched the word out, along with his back. Well, maybe tomorrow, then. He decided to go to the bathroom and wash his face, and see whether the braid was still okay. There was no reason to not try to look okay, although there was no reason to really look okay anyway. It wouldn’t impress Heero in the least. That was a painful thought. Maybe I should stop thinking this way, I wouldn’t hurt myself, then. Well, who could keep one’s mind from working. He usually didn’t think much – just like an average person, he thought. He was used to making decisions through feelings and experience, not through thinking it over and over again. However, he couldn’t prevent himself from thinking of Heero, and whatever came with it. He just wondered how painful this must be for someone who usually thought even more than Duo himself did. Ew...!

With these thoughts on his mind, he crossed the corridor to the darkened bathroom. He opened the door and was surprised to find Heero on the floor. He was more than surprised, actually, since it was Heero! Not Trowa or Quatre or Wufei. Something pinched him in his stomach real hard. He knew where that feeling came from, although he would have loved to deny it. It was Heero’s beauty, Heero’s strange way to act – it was everything he liked about Heero that came flying into his stomach.

“Gomen!” he said and closed the door as he left.

Duo leaned down on the wall across from the bathroom, recovering, maybe.

“Sitting in the darkness on the bathroom floor...” he muttered and shook his head.

Shortly after that, Heero came out of the bathroom, not looking at Duo in the least.

“The bathroom’s not occupied now,” he said. Duo smiled. Smiling was better than letting the pain come through him. He entered the bathroom and looked to the empty spot on the floor where Heero had been sitting. “Ne’er mind...,” he mumbled and went out of the bathroom again.


Quatre didn’t even know how he had ended up on this balcony again... had he met Trowa on the way? If yes, he hadn’t talked to him. Hadn’t even looked at him. Hadn’t even seen the emerald eyes.

            He silently imagined the other boy’s face and shuddered. Such beauty would never be his, how could he even hope? What would it be like fighting in a war and know that the beloved you held in your heart would never love you back? What would it be like fighting in a war and knowing the person in the other Gundam loves you madly? No, Quatre would risk Trowa’s, his, and maybe the other pilots’ lives! It was an insane idea to tell him. He’d just have to go on. He had kept on going so far, he could go further - even with this pain.

            “Dreaming?“ Duo stepped out on the balcony.

            “Oh,... Duo!“ Quatre sighed and moved to sit on the banister. “Yes, sort of.“

            Duo looked outside into the garden for a while, Quatre had his eyes turned to the stars.

            “You can’t hide it,“ Duo said.

            “Nani?“ Quatre looked over at Duo in confusion.

            “Oh, come on, you know what I am talking about.“

            Quatre had an idea what Duo was talking about and blushed a little, hoping that this was not what he meant. He shook his head and looked back to the stars.

            Duo sighed, “You can’t hide your feelings for Trowa.“

            That was it, Quatre thought, Duo knows. “What? I don’t know what you are talking about!”

            “C’mon, Quatre, stop denying it!“

            “I really don’t know...“ he protested.

            “Quatre!“ Duo blew his bangs up in an annoyed sigh.  ((Clees & Line: KABLOOEY!)) Quatre knew now that there was no point in denying it. Duo seemed pretty sure and why should he lie to him anyway?

            “Is it that obvious?“ he asked, falling back into his usual shyness.

            “Yeah. Your eyes sparkle when he comes into the room, you blush, you smile...”

            “Stop it, please Duo!“ Quatre begged, brushing a hand through his bangs. What if Trowa could see all this, too? Then his plan about just going on wouldn’t work out at all. It wouldn’t even work if Heero and Wufei knew!

            “Don’t worry, Quatre,“ Duo said friendly, “I know he likes you, too.“

            Quatre could not believe it. Duo might be trying to cheer him up or something. He just imagined if he believed Duo and went up to Trowa and told him that he loved  him, possibly finding out that Trowa just likes him... how embarrassing. And he would lose everything he ever had with Trowa! No way. He would have loved to believe Duo, but this was too vague, too dangerous.

            “Well, he might like me but... not this way.“

            “Quatre, I am serious. I know he likes you ... that way.“ Neither of them could name it directly. Quatre was torn apart between his feelings. How great would that be? How great would it be to share these feelings with Trowa, but no - it was impossible! It could not be true!

            “No, Duo. You are mistaken.“

            “I am not. Listen, Quatre-“

            Quatre jumped down from the balcony railing with a loud thud.

            “I really don’t like this conversation!“ he said, a little furious without meaning to be, and ran down to his own room.

            He opened the old file on the computer and started typing again.


((Line: I know I am Duo AND Quatre, but I .... we... had this conversation…))


            Duo knows. He looks at me and knows. Does Wufei know... does Heero... and Trowa? Heero wouldn't care. Wufei neither. Duo didn’t show until he talked to me, but he knows. I hope Trowa can't see it. Oh, I am longing to tell him, but it will never ever come over my lips. Ai Shiteru - it's just two damned words!!!! Why is it impossible!!! Why is this happening anyway. Why Trowa???


            Heero ground his fist into the wall and felt slight satisfaction as the grainy cement bit into the skin of his knuckles.  Felt?

            The Perfect Soldier felt the pain, but it was disconnected, far away, as if a dream...

            He ground his hand in more, punching hard at the cement wall, but absently not enough to break his hand.  He had to be ready when the mission request was confirmed.  Had to be ready to go.  Go?  Or flee?

            Strange that he fled into the arms of danger and death from the relative safety of the ‘safe’ house he was posted at.  Felt?  He doesn’t feel.  He’s not supposed to.

            But he ached, and that certainly qualified as feeling, at least he thought so.  He was so confused.  Training battled against newfound emotions inside him, one fighting for supremacy of the other. 

            Should he embrace his confusion and aching, or should he knock it down under his training to be indifferent?  He felt skin rip away from his abused hand.

            In the end, it didn’t matter.  He was leaving tomorrow in the early morning, when he knew none of the others would be awake.  Heero only slept about two or three hours once he made sure everyone else was not awake.  And even then, the only reason he could fall asleep into a vast, dreamless oblivion was with the aid of little green pills Dr. J kept him in supply of.

            He had spent too many nights flushing the pills down the toilet to make Dr. J at least think there was nothing wrong with him as the pills disappeared as they were supposed to.  Then Heero would spend those hours watching Duo sleep.  How many nights he left their room shivering under the urge to crawl in next to the baka and cuddle him in his arms, he had already lost count.

            That’s why Heero took a room with Trowa.  He had approached Trowa first, and the European had immediately agreed.  But he found he only slept a half hour, despite taking the prescribed pill. 

            What was wrong with him, he did not know.  But he did know one thing:

            Tomorrow, it was all going to end.

            Standing up, Heero brushed the dirt from his rear and walked out into the garden.  He was staring at the bushes and didn’t notice Duo stretched out on one of the yellow beach chairs.  The Japanese boy just sat on the round wheel past him and leaned back on his wrists to watch the stars.  Something tickled his fingers and he lifted one hand.

            A little spider greeted him before promptly climbing up and down his arm and all around in his palm.  Heero stared at it in wonder.  It trusted him...  Just like the fly, it trusted him.  But the fly was no longer keeping him company, it had it’s own life.  But the spider was now here.

            The spider cheerfully bounced along his fingers.  Heero lifted his other hand and the yellow thing jumped over and adventured all along the pilot’s tan appendage.  Heero watched silently and even engaged the spider, bringing up each hand so it could jump back and forth.  A crash sounded behind him.

            Heero glanced back to see Duo snarling and hurling the beach chair away.  He looked back to the spider.  The spider happily waved up at him as only spiders can, and bounced between his open hands.

“Don’t break the chair, Maxwell.“ He said absently, his monotone always there, but his attention delightfully diverted from the center of his confusion.

            “Thanks for the comment, Heero Yuy.“ Duo replied rather furiously, before loudly going into the house.  Heero didn’t reply.  The ache in him grew as he heard in Duo’s voice how much he hated him.  He didn’t know why, but this made the ache even more painful. 

            But the spider was there, with perfect trust.  Perfect... trust... in him...


Duo returned to the garden because, once again, Quatre was requiring the computer for himself and Duo could not really sleep. He went outside, and sat down on one of the swings, staring at the soil in front of him.

            He sighed. He wouldn’t try to do any matchmaking with Trowa and Quatre. It wasn’t wise to interfere in love, he believed. He looked up at the stars and the sky again. Yes, it was true, he was a believer, but all this was much too complicated to additionally involve a god. He wondered who made the choice, who - dammit! - had told him to fall in love with Heero Yuy, and not with anyone else. Heero, the one who called him a baka, and loved to make fun of him whenever he could. Heero, who displayed pictures of him in his pajamas, with wet and unbraided hair to make people laugh about him! How could he, Duo Maxwell, ever fall in love with this... this... thinks-he’s-the-best-in-the-world!

            And how could he have ever thought that stupid program meant something? How could he have had the stubborn idea to ask Heero himself whether he was supposed to see it, and tell him that the all the soldiers had. Now, not only he himself was in trouble with Heero, but Quatre, Wufei and Trowa as well. All because of him.

            “Duo Maxwell, you are an idiot!“ he yelled at himself.

He started swinging, watching three red lights far away. He tried to swing as high as possible, and set his mind on nothing but the swinging. But he couldn’t. Oh this stupid broken heart! Why Heero Yuy? The coldest of all! Duo wished to defrost this bunch of ice, to get through to him but this was a mission he would definitely fail at.

            He jumped down from the swing, landing in a summersault in the middle of the roses.

            “Ouch... k’so!“

            And then he went wild for no purpose; he kicked the tree and cartwheeled on the grass. He had to get rid of this emotional trash deep inside him, but he found out very soon that it would not work. Breathing heavily, he flipped himself onto a yellow garden-chair and watched above.


            Isn’t it strange how fifteen year olds like us can blow up any soldier in this world but are not capable to cope with such a thing as love?


            He laughed at his own wisdom, which would lead him nowhere. He looked up at the stars and shook in laughter. It wasn’t funny at all, but it anyway made him laugh. It was all too ridiculous... Yeah, true... where was his ‘god’ to help him? But maybe this god didn’t have any influence on love as well? He protected him on the battlefield, maybe this was enough.

            And on that, Duo fell asleep...


            He did not remember having a nightmare. He didn’t remember shifting around in his chair, but he probably had. His muscles were all tensed when he hit the floor.

            “K’SO!!!“ he yelled as he tumbled down on the grass, and the yellow chair tumbled right over him. He must have made it fall over when he moved in his wild dream. And not only his hands, arms, legs, back and neck were tensed, his soul was tensed, too. He threw the chair off of him, releasing that tenseness by concentrating all his power to send the chair flying away from him.

            The stupid thing landed in the flowers across from him, and made a hell lot of noise.

            “Don’t break the chair, Maxwell,“ a harsh voice said from the corner of the house. No doubt it was Heero. Duo angrily re-arranged the chair and climbed up the steps to the house. Heero was the last person he needed to have a comment from right now.

            “Thanks for the comment, Heero Yuy,“ he said furiously and went inside noisily. Heero! What did he know???


Once again, Quatre wanted to return to the balcony. He liked to be near to the stars and to Trowa's room as well. He prevented thinking about what Duo had said. Trowa might like him the usual way, or why else would he have talked so much with him in the basement... but Trowa would not love him.

            At least, he told himself, at least he had a home to return to. A home he remembered growing up in. Not for long, but he remembered.

            "K'so!" It wouldn't be so bad if I hadn't started loving Trowa. But what had happened couldn't be changed now. His mouth formed the words... Ai Shiteru, but he couldn't bring his voice to say it. He was too cautious. If everybody already suspected him of having these… feelings… for Trowa, they did not need to hear him saying that.

Why, he wondered, why did he have to go up there again, as he walked up the stairs. Quatre was almost dragged up there by himself - back to Trowa’s room. What did he do to himself, anyway? Was he trying to make himself ache? To hell with love, he thought, frowning, what was all that worth if it just meant pain instead of happiness? He sighed.


Trowa walked over to his music texts, thumbing through the pages, stopping on one of his favorites.  He hummed it softly to himself, thinking about taking out his flute to give true a voice which was beautiful enough to give the piece justice.  This thought reminded him of a certain pilot and he almost smiled.


Quatre found Trowa inside, close to a desk, looking at the music. His bangs fell down on his forehead, almost completely covering one eye. His fingers moved over the sheets, following the line of a melody. And even though Quatre was in pain, he couldn’t help smiling at that sight. He forced himself to come up closer to Trowa. Trowa didn’t know what Quatre was feeling for him, so he would not mind him being close. Trowa wouldn’t be afraid that Quatre could not control himself. Quatre had to, he know. And he had that much control of himself, even when it was painful.

            It was strange… Trowa had the same book that Quatre had played from before. Out of the two songs in this book Quatre liked most, Trowa was looking at one of them. It was the second one he had played on the violin tonight. The one he had imagined playing with Trowa. Trowa was lightly humming the tune. Quatre started humming with Trowa.


            Trowa stopped humming when he heard the other pilot's voice.  Wow, he was really getting careless... he hadn't noticed the blonde's approach.

            "No, please don't stop."  But Trowa already had.  He kept his emerald eyes on the notes, unable to look up at Quatre.  The blond's pale fingers touched the paper near his own, and the other pilot began humming where Trowa had left off.  Trowa didn't say or do anything save breathing; Quatre's voice was a sweet tenor, leaving him hungrily wanting to hear more music from the blonde's throat and violin.


            “I like this one a lot,“ Quatre said after he had finished, still enchanted by the greatness of the song and the remembrance of the dream he had had while playing the violin. And what else could Quatre ask for when he could stand next to Trowa, singing, and Trowa listened? Oh, but there was so much Quatre would have wanted to ask for. So much more he would have liked to give and so much more he longed to take. It couldn’t be, he told himself, and he kept control over himself, as people of his stature should - at least he thought they should.

            He flipped the pages with quivering hands to piece 14.

            “I like this one a lot, too,” Quatre said, his voice trembling even more than his hands. It was the one he had first played tonight. He started humming the tune again and Trowa followed it, quietly humming some parts along with him. Quatre’s heart began to ache, it’s beating increased. This was just a little bit of music he shared with Trowa. He only touched a little of the greatness he longed and asked for; a little of the magic of music shared. Oh, how conjuring it would be if the flute and the violin would play together… But could Quatre control his feeling in such a moment? It was hard to control himself right now, and not say those two words… Wouldn’t it be better not to test his self-control, and avoid a duet with Trowa? Quatre shivered with emotion. He forced himself to stop imagining. Trowa would just have to look at him to see how shaken he was from that little bit of music. And how could Quatre explain?


            The humming stopped and Trowa stepped back, a little embarrassed.  But Quatre only smiled and moved to the balcony. 

Quatre couldn’t bear staring at Trowa, who was with him on the balcony now, any longer. He didn’t like watching beauty from afar, but it was his only choice.

Quatre stared over at the Heavyarms pilot as he looked up to the stars. He was a silhouette against the background, only his face and the emerald eyes could be seen in the light of moon and stars. Trowa turned his head over to Quatre.  It was too late for the blonde boy to turn his own gaze at the stars, pretending he hadn’t looked at Trowa. So he just smiled his innocent smile and Trowa looked back. Trowa never smiled, not even now. Quatre felt his heart growing heavy.

So he eventually turned back to the stars, closed his eyes and started humming a tune. This way he could at least imagine to be even closer to him… He hummed part of a piece he remembered and part of the music he had made up for Trowa. Fortunately the pilot next to him didn’t know that.


            Trowa had found the other sitting on the corner of the railing, staring at the stars.  The European boy moved closer, but not too close – enough so if Quatre lost his balance he could grab him.  As he watched, Quatre closed his eyes and began humming a lovely tune.

            Trowa’s eyes were glued to the beautiful boy.  It was all he could do to not run over and grab him in a tender embrace.  He watched in silence; mizu me was framed in the night, the darkness contrasting his paleness, his innocence and sweetness seeming to warm the very air.  Trowa’s heart leapt into his throat, his secret love overflowing and making the pain intensify into sweet torture.

            Having the glowing pilot so close, but infinitely out of his reach, was one of the hardest things he could remember dealing with.

            Oh Quatre... would you act in revulsion?  Would you never be able to look me in the eye again?  Would you hate me?  No... you would pity.  You heart is too loving to hate me, but you would pity.  And that is the last thing I would not be able to stand to stay by your side... Quatre...

            The beautiful creature beside him kept humming wonderfully, blissfully unaware of the eyes that watched him with the look of silent love and adoration.  The eyes of a lover.  But Trowa did not have him as a lover, and never would.

            But in his dreams, he would hear that voice, that song, that heartbeat.

            The words escaped him as he turned to leave.  “Ai shiteru...”.  He felt numbness overcome him as he walked through the shared bedroom and sat heavily on the stairs, not being able to identify whether he made the stone beneath him cold or if the stone made him cold.  Mizu me, ai shiteru, ai shiteru...


Quatre was frozen on the balcony... stone. He carefully climbed down from the rail. Something echoed in his ear. Trowa had whispered something and Quatre had not quite understood. For a moment, he had thought Trowa had used those two words, ai shiteru, but of course Quatre knew where that came from. He had been thinking about these two words the whole time. No wonder he had imagined that it was exactly what Trowa had said. In reality, Quatre reminded himself, he just said goodbye or something like that. But still the words echoed in his mind. If there was a little more security in what Duo had said, and in what Quatre had thought he had been hearing… - but it was all too vague to be true.

Still his heart was going crazy. I have to calm down, I have to keep control... he thought, and ran up and down the balcony. “No he didn’t say that. Ai shiteru... this is not what Trowa had told me!“ he held to the rail tightly and jumped some as if he could make the thought and the wish fall off of him. “No, Quatre... not Trowa.“

However, he felt this didn’t work in the least. So he went downstairs and flung himself into the chair in front of the computer, typing crazily.


AI SHITERU.... did he say that? I wonder. No, he can't! I should stop imagining these things! He can't. I barely heard him. He said goodbye... certainly. Not these words... in my ears it sounded like that but it surely was not. Stop going insane. It seems as if something must happen tonight, but just like all the other nights, nothing will happen. Stop hoping, I should stop hoping.



Part VI


He left the cold stairs a few moments later, unwilling to let himself obstruct anyone’s way.  Trowa went down to the empty basement.  He liked it there.  It was quiet, cool, and dark.  He walked over to the bar, finding the water and his glass still there.  He noticed Quatre’s was there as well, but tried not to think about it. 

            All he could hope for was that Quatre hadn’t heard him utter those words.

            And if he did, well, hope then that he didn’t look at him with pity in those beautiful, bright, blue orbs.

            Trowa glanced around as saw a game on the floor.  He recognized it after a few moments as fußball... sometimes referred to as tabletop football.  He sat down by it and carefully fiddled with the little men.  The game hadn’t been properly attended to, and rust had appeared on the steel.  Some of the men were upside down or slightly off.  With patient and elegant fingers, Trowa coaxed the figurines back to their intended positions.

            He didn’t look up as a figure swept by, to the bar, then left.  He was hoping it was Heero or Duo, but if it was Quatre, well, he hoped it wasn’t to come down and demand a reason for him saying those two words.

            Trowa focused his attention back on fixing the game.  It gave him something to distract himself with.


            Indeed, it had been Quatre who had been walking inside to get his glass. He would have loved to stop and say something, but he could not think of anything at all. He just poured in his glass and hoped he didn’t have to meet those wonderful eyes again. But Trowa hadn’t looked up, fortunately, and Quatre had sneaked back out again.

            He sighed heavily when he was back upstairs. He had been humming tunes with Trowa, he had been out there with him, he had even briefly talked about music with him earlier that night. Why couldn’t he talk to him right now? Why couldn’t he think of anything to say to him? He emptied his glass and made it for the only place he wanted to go… The balcony.


Heero gently let the spider down from his hand.  He watched as the spider waved and merrily skittered off into the darkness.  Standing up quickly, he hopped off the wheel and walked on the stone path to the house.  Noticing a small blot of darkness on the white stone of the patio connected to Duo’s room, he knelt.  It was a brown slug.

The boy reached out a careful hand and the slug didn’t react.  It seemed everyone he ran into, other than the pilots, granted him such intimate trust.  The ache receded slightly at this gesture of friendship.  But it still showed him, as he watched the friendly little creatures wobble, clean and rest, that they had life and he did not.  He reached out a gentle finger and petted it on the head.  He felt a sudden and strange urge to smile as it’s eye’s wiggled around, trying to see who had woken it up.  Heero was about to reach out again when a shadow fell over him.  He glanced forwards to see shiny, black combat boots.

His gaze traveled upwards along the familiar body till he reached the determined looking face.  Violet eyes met his blank stare head on and he slowly stood up, leaving the little slug to it’s nap.  He knew a challenge when he saw one.


((Clees: Yes folks, Heero is King of the Insects, aka Nature-Boy... and I did play with all these buggies, hehehe!))


“Why are you requesting a mission?“ Duo said firmly. He had just read Heero’s request in the mail on the computer and was not pleased that neither he, nor the other pilots, had been informed about that earlier. If there was an OZ base around, Heero could not just keep it for himself, especially not in an area such as this, where any OZ action would be a big surprise - to all of them!


Ah, the big query.  Yes, that is the question of the night, isn’t it?  Why did he request a solo mission without any of the others knowing?  Heero was a bit unclear on this answer as well.  But the more he and Duo had a staring contest of wills, the more the fog lifted and he realized exactly why.

Heero knew he had no chance of surviving it if he went alone, and he was determined to use his self-detonation device in battle to take out as much of the base as strategically possible, leaving as little as he could, or at least enough to make sure the others would be able to finish the job without taking on any damages.

Well, actually, more at the core of his requesting was to give himself an excuse to self-detonate.

His dark blue eyes glared back at Duo’s purple ones.  “OZ base nearby.“


Duo glared back angrily. He was furious with Heero - he didn’t even try to excuse himself for not having told anyone. “Where exactly?“ They were so close, they practically shared the same air. Neither of them gave in and turned aside. Duo was furious, certainly, but there also was that slight anticipation inside him, the hope that something might happen. Of course, his mind clarified to him, nothing would happen but business talk.


Heero returned the gaze, his eyes burning into Duo’s.  “Two cities north.“  Of course that wasn’t technically exact, but it was the about calculation Heero was using for himself.

His nose was a couple centimeters separated from Duo’s, and he could taste the pilot’s breath.  He felt a weird feeling in the pit of his stomach, but angrily fought it aside.  He would not lose; he would not feel anything but his shell of ice.  He had nothing but that.  His training was the only thing that gave him a reason to live, to fight, to carry out the orders he was given.  That’s all he is alive for.  And that is what he will die for.


“You could at least have told us,“ Duo snarled, not breaking the burning eye-lock with Heero. Oh yes, Duo thought to himself, he had grown weak. Weak because of Heero. It just couldn’t be true. Even though he pretended to easily hold the gaze with Heero, standing up straight and tall, he felt a certain weakness in his knees. He wouldn’t be able to stay tensed for long, he knew. Not with Heero looking at him like that. The Perfect Soldier hated him! This spandex-crazy baka, the one he, Duo Maxwell, was foolish enough to love, simply hated him. So his eyes told him and he had to bear it. What else could he do?


“There’s no need; I’ll be going alone.“  He brushed past Duo to get into the house.  He felt a tingling sensation when they touched, but harshly pushed it aside.  No, he would not let Duo break him... at least, not anymore than the braided pilot already had.  He needed to plan, he needed to plan and get out of here, to something familiar and comforting; battle.

Then why could all he think about was touching Duo and feeling that delightful tingling sensation again?  What the hell was wrong with him?

Confused, Heero left the room to the bathroom, the one door he could lock.  Whether to lock himself in or others, namely Duo, out, he couldn’t tell.


“No way, baka.“ Duo didn’t let Heero’s touch come through to him until the Japanese pilot was out of sight. Then he let his hand touch the one spot he and the other one had touched and sighed. The feeling was unbearable, yet good and warm. Unbelievable that this came from the icy soldier Yuy... On the other hand, Duo was perfectly aware that Heero was serious about his plan, he knew him long enough to see it.

Going out there on his own, even in Wing Zero, was practically suicide. Duo would not tolerate Heero on such a mission, he would never tolerate Heero to go out there and kill himself. He cared too much about him. The OZ base had no chance against three or more Gundams but one Gundam on his own had no chance against the base.

Duo went inside and plopped down in front of the computer writing an urgent message to the scientists to emphasize on an order that requested the pilots to go as a group. He quickly typed up another message to Trowa, Quatre and Wufei, telling them that Heero had senselessly decided to go on a suicidal mission of his own, and that he would follow him in Deathscythe if necessary.

Baka, he thought. He must know that he wouldn’t survive such a mission… There must be another reason for him to do something as stupid as that. He definitely is hiding something. I will either find out and stop him or I will follow him and stop him!

Duo decided to make sure Heero could not secretly sneak away. Heero had just said one sentence about going on his own, but it was enough to set off the alarms in Duo. Heero was perfectly serious, Duo knew that very well.


Trowa stepped out onto the balcony, breathing in the air deeply.  It was so freeing to be up here.  He looked over to the corner railing where Quatre had been sitting and humming, like an angel.  Trowa sighed.  He had guessed by now it was Quatre who passed him in the basement.  And he hadn’t said a word.  Did that mean something?  Trowa couldn’t tell.  Whether it meant ill or good if the blond pilot had heard him, he would never really be able to guess.

So he didn’t let himself dwell on it.  It didn’t matter.  What mattered.... what mattered was the moonlight shining in those almost-curly strands of light blond hair, the pale face sparkling with the happiness of music... and the humming.  The wonderful humming.

            Trowa was drawn to the spot.  He closed his eyes as his hand reached out and rested lightly on the now empty railing.  He could almost imagine feeling the warmth of that small, almost fragile-looking body.  He could almost hear the humming again, and could imagine in his mind that Quatre turned and smiled to him, beckoning to him with one beautiful hand.  And himself then rushing to the blonde’s arms, finally feeling at peace, finally feeling a familiar home.

            But when the tall boy’s eyes opened, the fantasy was dispelled.  He was alone.  And the closest he could come to that dream was touching the rapidly turning cold railing.  But Quatre had been close, and he supposed that was enough... it was the closest he would ever come to the blond, and he was grateful even for that small bit.


            Quatre had refilled his glass in the basement, and immediately emptied the whole lot of it, as if he needed to drown himself in mineral water. It didn’t help at all. He wondered whether Trowa was sleeping already. It was late and maybe Quatre should try to sleep again, hoping no more nightmares would come… But if Trowa was up there sleeping, he would at least have to look at that beautiful shape again before crawling into his own bed… all alone.

            He sneaked up the stairs. Someone was in the bathroom. If it was Trowa, Quatre could get to the balcony unseen and watch the stars… He climbed up the stairs to the first floor, and found the door to the two silent pilots’ room open, the lights switched on. It was empty, but the door to the balcony was not closed. Quatre walked through the room with a madly pounding heart. And he was right - he found Trowa out there in the corner, where he himself had sat before, looking out at the distant stars. He quietly moved to rail at the middle of the balcony, looking at Trowa. He was far away from him, much too far, but he couldn’t find a reason to edge nearer to him. So he just stood there, waiting. Waiting for what? He could not tell.


            Trowa this time, remembering the last when Quatre had surprised him, was more careful and his sensitive ears picked up the noise of shuffling feet.  He turned, trying not to look embarrassed, trying to act for all the world as if he hadn’t just been fondling a piece of wood and thinking about a certain pilot.

            And there he was.  Trowa silently swallowed, watching him before turning his gaze back to the stars.  But all his attention was focused on the boy on the balcony with him.  He stole some glances at the blond, watching him behind adoring eyes.  All of his senses were thrown the blond’s way, ready to receive an exhale of breath, a scent on the wind or a movement of those gorgeous blue eyes.

            As Trowa pretended to look at the night, he was attentive to the blond and still silently cried out his torture and longings to the stars.  Mizu me, ai shiteru... I will always love you, every moment I can’t distract myself, I dream about you.  It’s the only thing I have to hold onto...


            Quatre glanced at Trowa again but couldn’t quite concentrate. He wished to be much closer to him than he actually was. Fortunately, the brown-haired European kept his attention on the stars, or so it seemed. Quatre could watch the unreachable silhouette without being noticed. He wondered, what he was really wishing for. He wanted to be held by his arms and lean his head against his chest. It was a strange feeling to so selfishly want all that, but he could not prevent that feeling. If he could just bring himself to say it! He was fighting deep inside to - just once - call him his beloved, no matter what happened. The other half inside held him back, telling him that it could only make things worse. And all the while, his blue eyes showed peacefulness, no sign of the battle inside. He didn’t let himself look at Trowa with another expression than peacefulness.

            Say something, anything! Quatre told himself. He looked at the stars again. He saw several moving lights in the sky, and recognized them as transport ships. It almost seemed as if they were heading for the same direction.

            “There are many transports out there tonight,” he managed to say in an almost normal tone.

            Trowa blinked and paid attention to the sky.  He waited, then after a moment, he too noticed the blinking lights that signaled a transport.  “Hm.”

            “Do you think Heero knows about this? It’s quite a lot for such a peaceful colony at night…” Stupid issue, but at least we’re talking.

            “He wouldn’t go off on his own into a death trap, at least not without telling us.  And that would be assuming it’s the worst case scenario.  It’s nothing.”  Leaning a little to the right, he glanced past the mammoth trees that were everywhere on this colony.  Something had caught his eye... there it was.  Glowing in the distance were three red lights, arranged in a sort of triangular design.  “Hm...”.  Trowa frowned inwardly to himself.  This was odd... but then again, Heero would tell them; Heero was nothing if not reason when it came to the objectives.

            Quatre frowned at the stars and the transport ships. Trowa was right, Heero would not miss telling them about such an occurrence as this, so he couldn’t have noticed yet. Well, Quatre and Trowa would make sure Heero got the news in time.

            “They are heading all to the same direction, but it would be most unlikely to find an OZ base here on this colony.” He noticed Trowa bending over the rail some as he forced himself to look at him again. “What is it?“

            “Hm.  C’mere.“  Trowa didn’t look over at Quatre, his eyes still trained on the weird design, but motioned to the blond with a hand.

            Quatre walked over to Trowa, trying to see what ever it was he was looking at. Red lights were shining through the crown of an enormous tree, and Quatre had to lean against Trowa to really see anything. It was impossible to not feel anything, being so close to Trowa. It was a curse - he didn’t want to let go, but he was embarrassed at the same moment.

“Er... Doesn’t look good. If there really is a base,“ Quatre breathed deeply to prevent stuttering, “they could have settled and grown there for years.“

            Trowa fought even more with himself as he felt Quatre’s warm body lightly against his own.  He longed to wrap his arms around the cute Arabian, but refused, not daring to mess with the half-friendship he seemed to have with the little blond this night.  Instead, he leaned back so Quatre could see the lights more clearly.  “Look.“ He whispered softly, focusing his thoughts instead on trying to remember if he had seen that design anywhere else before.  “Strange, but I doubt it is anything to be worried over...  Considering how sharp Heero’s senses are, he probably noticed this before us and dismissed it.  I trust his instincts; as I said, I think he would have told us before if there was anything to be concerned over.  Don’t worry.”  That was as close to comforting as Trowa could get, carefully choosing his words.  He didn’t want to upset Quatre again like he did when he tried to make a joke; he knew now he should stick to what he was familiar with.  But Quatre seemed uneasy for some reason, so he tried again to go outside his normal quiet and expressionless whispers to attempt to lay the pretty blond’s worries to rest.


Quatre moved a bit away from Trowa, nodding slightly. Trowa seemed to be uneasy with the touch of their bodies since he was moving away from him. It was no surprise though, Quatre and Trowa weren’t that familiar with each other… He was quite talkative tonight, though, and Quatre allowed himself to like that. The only thing he was uneasy about was the fact that Trowa’s words did not seem to serve the purpose of explaining why they hadn’t noticed before, but to comfort Quatre for some odd reason. “Alright, then,“ Quatre finally said, when he stood apart from Trowa again. He was thankful that the darkness hid his face and the slightly red cheeks.


Trowa noticed Quatre move back away a little as well.  Trowa watched the youth stare out into the darkness.  His emerald eyes focused on the way the moonlight slid gracefully down the blond hair of his secret love’s white gold strands.  He couldn’t help it.  Mizu me... you are too beautiful...  Eyes closed and Trowa leaned forward slightly, his lips softly tasting Quatre’s hair in a light kiss.

            Suddenly he pulled back from Quatre, eyes trained to the ground, cheeks burning.  How could he have been so stupid!?  He managed to whisper out, “Gomen,“ before practically running off of the balcony, through his room and down the stone stairs.  Along the way, he fought tears, fingers tightly intertwined and pressed against his wildly beating heart.

            He fought the urge to moan in pain.  He had done, quite possibly, the stupidest thing in his life and ruined whatever chances he had of friendship with the one he longed for as a lover.  Now Quatre would never wish to be in his presence unless necessary, this was certain.  Now he couldn’t even admire from afar. 

            Shame and regret clawed at him as the European disappeared into the cool darkness of the basement.


            Quatre was more than surprised by this and couldn’t say a word. He wanted to call Trowa back, but the tall pilot was already gone when Quatre came back to his senses. He couldn’t really grasp what had happened a second ago. Trowa had kissed him? There was no doubt he had. He had felt the other’s lips on his hair and the soft breath had tingled his ear. Trowa indeed had kissed him! He also had excused for the kiss - so it must have been real… Did this mean, that it was true what Duo had said? Had Trowa actually confessed his love on the balcony earlier? Quatre couldn’t really tell yet, but the kiss he had just receive gave him the strength and the will to find out what was behind all this. He could feel his heart beating in his throat. He would probably know for sure whether he had a chance with Trowa in a few minutes. He was nervous, but he had found the strength to stand this nervousness.

            He knew exactly where he would find Trowa. He went straight into the basement… that would be the place where Trowa would hide if he couldn’t hide in his own room. Quatre took all his courage as he opened the door to the room with the bar.

            He found Trowa sitting there on one of the high stools, contemplating a toothpick. His back was turned to the door, and he could not hear the timidly sneaking Quatre approaching.


            Trowa fiddled with the plastic bird, accidentally producing a toothpick.  A toothpick....

            He stared off into the wall, still shaking from pent up emotion.  But somehow, for some reason, he smiled slightly.  He knew the stars could hear him, even from here, hiding in the concrete and pretending for all he’s worth that he was one with the furniture.

            He leaned his elbows on the bar counter, and tilted his head upwards.  “Yes stars, I’ve said it a million times, and a million more will I tell you; ai shiteru Quatre.“  He looked downwards again, feeling creeping despair when he noticed the counter had another layer of shadow atop it.  Strange... 


            Quatre heard Trowa’s words with joy. The small sensation in his stomach had exploded into something much bigger, much more intensive than it had ever been before. He felt his cheeks growing hot along with it, and stepped next to Trowa on the bar, trembling with emotion but unable to say anything.


            Trowa’s green eyes narrowed as he focused on the outline.  Oh dear, he was really getting careless...

He slowly looked up, hoping that for once maybe a god would decide to answer one of his prayers instead of laughing at him, but alas, it was not to be so.  There was Quatre.  Trowa’s eyes widened and he dropped the toothpick.  Quickly pulling his mind back from panic mode, he diverted his eyes from the beautiful face and leaned down to the floor to snatch up the fallen toothpick.  He sat back up quickly, staring down at the counter top intensely, trying hard to speak around the lump in his throat.

            “G-gomen nasai....“


            Quatre was still frozen on the spot, he could only shake his head and smile, knowing that Trowa wasn’t looking, maybe he could feel the move. “No…” he managed to tell him and his voice was even fainter than it used to be.

            “Arigatou…” He wanted to say more, but he couldn’t.


            Trowa looked at the blond again.  He must be crazy... he couldn’t understand at all what Quatre was telling him.  He just proclaimed his love for the blond and he told him thank you?!

            The European’s eyes were impossibly wide as he blatantly stared at Quatre. 



            Quatre felt Trowa’s eyes on him, and felt he was about to loose his voice. He closed his eyes, hoping it would be easier to say it when their eyes didn’t meet. And turning still a shade redder than he was, he whispered softly:

            “Ai shiteru…“



            The tall pilot just gaped for a few moments, almost falling off the chair.  Those were the last words Trowa expected to hear from the beauty’s mouth.  Especially directed at himself.

            But he had said it.

            And it was directed at him.

            Suddenly the impossible became reality, dreams suddenly gave way to real life, and Quatre was there with him, feeling the same as he did.

            Trowa reached out carefully, touching Quatre’s shoulder before gliding over to his cheek, stroking the soft skin gently, just to reassure himself he wasn’t just asleep or in a trance.


            Quatre had kept his eyes closed, waiting for something to happen, and then felt a slight touch at his shoulder moving over to his cheek. There was no doubt anymore, not the slightest. Trowa seemed to return his love with the same intensity Quatre wanted to give it. Quatre opened his eyes and turned his head towards the tall pilot. His hand searched for Trowa’s and held it as he found it. Eventually, two pairs of joyfully shining eyes met.


            Trowa turned in his chair to face Quatre, not trusting his legs to hold him up if he should stand.  He was lost in the depths of brilliant azure, his hand clasping the smaller soft one lightly. 

            He gently tugged at Quatre’s hand, silently asking him to come to him.


Quatre gave in to Trowa’s insistence and moved forward, taking a step closer to him. He let one arm slip over his koibito’s shoulder and leaned into a gentle kiss.


            Trowa closed his eyes as he felt Quatre’s lips against his own, and surrendered to the sweet kiss, knowing that he would never forget this moment for the rest of his life.  His arms wrapped lightly around the blond Arabian’s waist and pulled him close. 


((Clees. And no, for you hentai freaks out there, me and Line stopped at Quatre saying ai shiteru, but you KNOW what those two boys will be doing afterwards, so, we’re fast forwarding now, leaving the two newfound lovers to their biz...hehehehe))



Part VII


            Heero threw himself into the computer chair and brought up his journal.  Few knew he kept one, but then again, they were all supposed to have one to log key events for the scientists’ use later should there be a disgression.

            He typed a few words, needing to see them in chances of then knowing how to decode them and perhaps find a way out of his confusion and sudden self-doubts. 

            Duo was changing him somehow.  He didn’t know what was going on, but he did know that he was not going to give Duo the chance to undermine all the training he underwent, no.  That was why he wanted to use the mission as an excuse to self detonate.  He wasn’t going to give Duo the chance to continue changing him until he... until he could feel again.  Heero was unused to these new... emotions.  The realization he was the walking dead.  No, he would end this confusion and aching.  He would end the growing need to touch Duo, to feel Duo, to close his eyes and let the war fall away in the blissful oblivion of the bed the two pilots normally had to share.

            Heero snapped back from these thoughts.  The aching was worse when he thought about Duo, so he tried to think of something else. 

            He closed the new entry, the one speaking his quiet fear at not being alive, at the pain, unaccustomed feelings and his determination to lose it all the next morning at the OZ base.

            Heero jumped to his feet, grabbed a nearby wrapped chocolate square and stalked outside.  He sat heavily on the plastic bench, folding his legs beneath him as he opened the package.  Breaking the square into little perfect squares, he shoved one in his mouth and chewed as he arranged the others in a formation, excluding one square to represent himself.  He chewed, his mind focusing on the planning at hand.


            Duo woke up as Heero left the room. It didn’t seem as if the Japanese pilot was ready to take his Gundam and leave them all, yet. Still, there was no reason to not keep an eye on him - on the opposite: Duo had to know whatever Heero was up to in order to prevent something stupid. He walked out into the garden, after Heero, and saw him on a bench eating chocolate. That was quite a good thing to see - not because of the strange feeling which welled up inside him as he saw him, but because of the fact that he did seem calm and peaceful sitting there.

            Duo took the chance to walk over to a tree and stand on a bench to see the OZ base Heero had been talking about. He just had to follow the movements of the travelling transport ships he finally was aware of. There was an unusual amount for such a small colony - of course Heero’s sharp eyes had not missed that. In the distance Duo could make out three red lights in a triangular shape - the base, no doubt. And it seemed quite large from here. It just enforced Duo’s feeling that Heero on his own would not have a chance. If Heero went there, he would loose him, and that was not supposed to happen! No matter how nasty this stupid ice block used to be, Duo would not let him die. At least not so senselessly and easily.

            He absentminded fumbled with his braid. Why was Heero doing that? Duo opened his braid, not even knowing he did. Heero knew, he just had to know that even he would not survive this. Did he want to die? But why would he? It made Duo mad that he could not at all understand what was going on. He was helpless against something he didn’t know. He couldn’t come up with plans if he didn’t know what he was fighting against.

            His hair hung down his shoulders now, unbraided and in slight waves. He realized he held the band that usually held it together in his hands. He furiously started to re-braid his hair. If that stupid pilot was just messing with him to make him upset, he’d search for a nice and perfect way to revenge himself, but if Heero was determined to go on a death mission… Heero didn’t know this, but Duo couldn’t imagine living without him… he didn’t know what to do with his life except killing people with Deathscythe on the battle field. Duo would not really be alive if Heero was missing.

            Duo had messed up his braid by now and opened it one more time, roughly yanking the three strands of hair apart. He snorted slightly at his own inability to braid his hair, which he had done a thousand times before, and also at that stubborn baka Heero! Tears of anger threatened to roll up in his face, but Duo did not let them come through. He didn’t care about the cost, but he would keep Heero from going on this stupid mission!

            He finished his braid - neatly this time - and went over to Heero demanding a piece of chocolate by holding out his hand. He tried to come up with anything against that mission Hero had assigned for himself.


Heero didn’t need to see the face of the owner when a thrusting hand came into view.  Not missing a beat, he placed the current ‘Wing Zero’ in the hand, then dismissed Duo again, focusing entirely upon his planning. 

            The boy arranged the remaining ‘OZ’ squares into a possible formation and considered.  If I go in from the right, I can take out this corner and launch forwards enough to take out three more with self-detonation.  Then there would be three left for them.  Acceptable.

            Heero continued swiftly, the pattern of the large group of chocolate squares changing, and also the direction from which ‘Wing Zero’ came from sometimes changed as well, as he planned different ways to attack the different base layouts, satisfied only when he found an acceptable amount of the base remaining intact that he knew would not pose a problem for his fellow pilots.

            Each new layout and attack position he memorized with a glance, filing the images away to be used later.  When he came upon the base, he’d have to immediately choose one of the pre-planned layouts closest to the real thing in time to not be found by the alarms first, and ruining his chance to surprise.


            Duo sat down on a large sitting ball, almost on the other edge of the patio. He had his face turned towards Heero, and his elbows placed on the ball as well.

            Impossible, he thought, Heero can’t be sane!

            He watched the other’s face and could almost see the brain work Heero was doing. What was he thinking about? All he had were some pieces of chocolate, and he was constantly fumbling with it - instead of eating. Duo rocked himself on the ball, still staring at Heero. He still wondered why the Japanese gave him this feeling, but accepted that it was love, and accepted that it would never be returned.

            He leaned forward some more and fell off the ball, tumbling down onto the patio.


            Upon hearing the large smack of a body connecting with the ground, Heero looked up from his confectionery planning.  There was the braided baka, very ungracefully splattered on the ground next to a large, bouncy ball. 

            Heero stared at him blankly for a long moment.

            “What are you doing?”


            Duo forced one of his patent, slight grins and looked into Heero’s dark blue eyes.

            ”I am watching Heero Yuy going insane,” he said flatly, before picking himself up from the floor and brushing off his braid.


            Heero stared at him with his trade mark Glare’O’Death before giving a monotonous “Hn” and turning back to his planning.  Absently, he shoved the current Wing Zero into his mouth, and picked up another square to replace himself.  What a baka.  What does he know?  His eyes widened slightly but he didn’t take his eyes off the little squares, not willing to arouse suspicion.  Does he know why I’m going?  No... he may be smart and good-looking, but he’s not that perceptive.  Dismissing the thought, he turned full tilt his attention to the chocolate, er, task at hand.  About forty more patterns left to evaluate. 


            Duo stood up straight and sauntered over to Heero… He sat down across from him on a bench, watching him shoveling chocolate around on the paper. Nani? … Duo started to comprehend: Heero used the chocolate to make battle plans by using the square pieces as bases and another one as his Gundam. Hn. Only one Gundam. He still wants to do it on his own.

            “Try that with two Gundams,” he advised.


            Heero pointedly ignored the braided pilot and resumed his planning.  He studied the pattern that faced him.  Hm... if I go in to the northeast, I can take out this one... he removed an OZ square and replaced it with his own.  If I continue flying in at this angle, I can catapult into this area...  He moved his chocolate in the direction of his thoughts.  And my detonation should be enough to take out three more, if I set off the ammunition as well...  He removed his chocolate, and then three other OZ squares.  Surveying the remaining squares he nodded to himself.  They’ll be able to handle the rest easily.  39.   Heero re-arranged all but one chocolate and set about the same process of finding a way to the center and self-detonating, wondering if maybe he’d be able to set up a chain reaction and take out as much of the base as possible.


            Okay, you choose to ignore me, Heero… Duo clenched his teeth, and stared at the chocolate and Heero’s swiftly moving fingers. He saw him move one piece to the center and take it and all the other’s around them away. Duo’s eyes narrowed… Nani… Heero’s planning to self-destruct!?  He growled slightly to himself – he was not going to let it happen. His hand under the table cramped in rage. Rage? Rage because Heero was so stupid, because Heero planned to hurt Duo in the most serious way he could ever be hurt.

            “You are not going to self-destruct! Not as long as I am here to prevent it!”


            Heero’s dark eyes glanced up at Duo.  He looked back down and picked up a chocolate, then slowly threw it to the tabletop in front of Duo. 

            “If you want some, just ask,” he replied tonelessly, before going back to his plans.  So the baka watched and figured it out.  Well, too late anyway.  Heero refused to let the baka interfere; he was going to do something useful for the objective and at the same time end his confusion.  It was an even trade in his mind, and he was determined to see it through.


            Duo let the chocolate rest in front of him and watched the Wing Zero pilot. What was going on in this boy’s mind – why the strong urge to press the button? Duo had no idea how to take Heero’s mind off that stupid idea, but if necessary, he’d try that for the rest of the night. He flatly looked at the pilot. Damn you, that you are so beautiful. I wouldn’t try to rescue your ass otherwise.

            “Why do you want to kill yourself, Heero?”

            Heero didn’t look up at the pilot, instead he kept his dark blue eyes glued to the patterns before him.  “My death in this way will further the objective.  It will be useful to the war.  That is all.”  He ignored Duo’s distracting presence and worked at the squares before him.  36...

            “Well, baka, it could be done another way and you are not so stupid to not know that. Why do you want to kill yourself?” Duo kept glaring at Heero even though the black-haired idiot didn’t look up. Duo’s fist was still clenched under the table.

            Heero finally looked up and glared back at the American in front of him.  “It will fulfill an objective.”  He looked down, dismissing the subject and returned to moving the little chocolates around.  The braided boy was starting to really distract him... those eyes...  Heero frowned slightly in annoyance and calmly kept planning, his mind thrown into the different procedures as much as humanly possible.  33.  Coming from the right, I might be able to take out these two, and then detonate, taking out these two...  Acceptable remains.  32...

            Duo flipped the piece of chocolate back on the paper. He didn’t feel like eating at all. He got up, and walked around the table closer to Heero. How should he accept he would loose Heero, he wondered. But his clenched fist reminded him that he was determined to prevent that. He slammed his flat hand onto the table and leaned himself upon it, watching Heero. His braid slid down from his shoulder, and hit the table with a light thud.

            “Damn it, Heero! There is no reason for that. You have no frickin’ chance against the whole base, and I will not let you self-destruct! What is the deal?”

            Heero’s eyes glanced over at the chestnut braid then up at the owner, not moving in the slightest besides his eyes.  He glared at the nuisance.  His voice was hard and toneless at the same time.  “It will be useful to the objective.”  He looked back to the sweets he was planning battles with and ignored the baka once more.  Duo certainly didn’t take the hint...  Go away.  His brows tensed as he glared at the pattern before him.  Make a loop to the other side, I can get this one and possibly take out four if I self-destruct close enough to use their tight formation to my advantage.

            How could that guy be so obstinate on killing himself. It was a curse to hear that because – it hurt! Of course the Perfect Soldier wouldn’t care that he hurt Duo that much, if he self-destructed – he would  possibly not even understand. This boy was a stone, surrounded by a shell even stronger than gundanium alloy – emotional ice. Nevertheless, Duo still was sure that Heero wouldn’t kill himself just to complete this mission. The base was too unimportant to get either of them killed, if not necessary, and Heero was needed in this war. Heero knew – he had to know it!  

            “I know this is not the reason. I know you too well.”

            “You know nothing.  It fits an objective, so I will do it..” Heero grabbed the chocolate, not being able to concentrate anymore with this baka babbling, and generally grating his nerves and ability to think about something other than the handsome pilot.  He started to stand, moving to go past Duo and somewhere else, anywhere but where Duo was.

            Duo laid a strong hand on Heero’s shoulder, trying to press him back on his seat, and looking straight at him. Duo was weak in Heero’s presence, he knew, but maybe this guy would at least listen to him if he used the only language they both knew well – violence. Only that this was the slightest form of it Duo knew… not really efficient, but if it could serve the purpose...

            “We care too much, Heero. Trowa, Quatre and Wufei care too much about you to let you slip away like that. I care too much about you to let you be killed so easily!”

            Heero’s eyes narrowed in anger and he tried to stand again, only to be pushed back down hard onto the plastic bench.  His voice was emotionless and without inflection.  “It is useful to the objectives.  Quatre can use the ZERO system, I am expendable.”  His dark eyes narrowed even more, his voice changing and becoming deeper and dangerous.  “Let go.”

            “You are not to us. You know you are not. We care, Heero!” Duo refused to let go, clenching his teeth in anger. Heero didn’t seem to get his point. Duo would have loved to tell Heero why he was not expandable to him, but it would just have made the Perfect Soldier even more stubborn about going. As long as Heero did not at least understand that he meant something to all of them, Duo would try to keep this painful eye contact, and pin Heero to his seat.

            Heero had had enough.  He didn’t understand what Duo meant with the whole ‘we care’ argument, but he was tired of it.  Besides, his resolve to fight against those wonderful hands and shining eyes was fizzling away. NO!  Duo would not stop him, he would not continue to make him ache and be so damn confused.

            Heero forcefully stood up, grabbing Duo’s extended arms and pushing up and backwards.  The braided pilot didn’t stand a chance in a physical contest with Heero, and the Japanese boy easily broke his grip, pushing him away to stalk past and into the house.

            He needed plans... plans, something to keep him away from Duo until he could leave, something to occupy his time and mind.  Heero went up to his and Trowa’s room.  The taller boy was nowhere in sight and Heero was thankful for that.  Sometimes Trowa was a bit too much like him for comfort.  He snatched up a pad and went onto the balcony, dead to the world besides the red pen he held, the pad and the three red lights.  Focusing with sharp eyes, Heero guessed from what he could see an outline, watching carefully to see if maybe he’d be able to see exactly where the transports landed.


            Duo let Heero easily defeat him. He caressed his painful arm, looking after the Japanese, smiling some. And he didn’t even know, why exactly he smiled. This was not funny at all. “Heero Yuy,” he muttered, “you will never change a bit.” However, this was exactly what Duo never wanted to happen – Heero to be different. It was that hidden, secret character that interested him, and the fact that there must be more behind the black bangs and dark blue eyes than just this whole lot of hate and coldness.

            Duo sighed, letting his jaws drop down a bit. What did he run after this guy for? It was all too late. He would never succeed in stopping Heero. He felt as if he had not only lost the fight, but the war. On the other hand he knew that he would never be able to forgive himself if he didn’t do everything to stop Heero from this mission. It was hard to follow Heero around and keep this superior smile on his face, but it was his only hope.

            Duo blinked slowly and decided it was time to take care of that kid. He went inside and climbed up the stone steps to join Heero on the balcony.


            Heero leaned dangerously to the side, nothing holding him really to make sure he didn’t fall.  Not that it mattered anyway; his hands were busy with the drawings, and his feet were on top of the railing with the rest of him.  He squinted some, attempting to see as much as he possibly could, trying to approximate the place of the landing for all these transports. 

            Hn, if their smart they would be mostly arsenaled with dolls.  With a colony as quiet as this, they wouldn’t have needed many pilots to take it over.  He added a bunch of little dots to various parts of his sketches.  Heero knew the drawings really didn’t serve a purpose, but they gave him something to do and think about. 

            The Japanese boy leaned out farther, watching the red lights connected to the tower he assumed must have been in the middle of the base.  If OZ had any common sense, the valuable tower would be positioned in the middle.  Or, at least, Heero assumed it was valuable.  The mission he was setting out for had too many blank spots, too many plans made on assumptions, but he refused to turn away.  He knew for sure it was a large base, and was determined to attack and die doing something useful. 

            He turned to a fresh page and sketched out more, noting different thoughts next to the line drawings.  


            Duo entered the balcony and spotted Heero sitting on the railing, leaning out. He would have love to sprint over there to make sure Heero wouldn’t fall down, but that would have been way too stupid. He slowly walked over, not talking and cursed that longing ache in his stomach. He watched the other soldier sketch the order of the bases on a sheet of paper. Heero’s eyes were sharp – those dark blue eyes, Duo found to be really fascinating, could approximately locate the different bases.

            He kept studying Heero’s drawings, trying to concentrate his attention rather to them than to the pilot. If he was going to follow Heero – and he would! – he would be better off if he knew what exactly he was attacking. Heero provided him with a perfect overview, fortunately. And looking at the sheets, he was close enough to catch Heero if he should fall off the rail. He didn’t expect that to happen, though.


            Heero didn’t react to the other pilot, and added a single word to his pad: destroy.  Hopping off the railing, he kept his head bent down in study of the sketches he had drawn and walked down the stairs and out through Duo’s room to the garden.  Standing on the wheel, he turned the pad in his hands to face the right way according to his current position.  He looked up and in the direction of the base, and then back to the pad, doing the same mentally that he did with the chocolate; different ways to breach the bases defenses and bring about the end of OZ occupation on this colony, as well as the end of his own strange unlife.


            Duo shrugged and followed the kid downstairs. If he had anything to do this night, it was watch Heero and ache, and eventually follow him in his Gundam. He fiddled with his braid as he crossed his own room, finding the Perfect Soldier on the wheel next to the tree. He was spying into space, just where Duo himself had stood before, checking out the OZ bases. So this was possibly going to be the last night they would ever spend together, huh? It was most unlikely that both soldiers would survive this act. So either he, Yuy or they both, would get killed. Duo tried to be prepared. He didn’t mind dying, but he did mind loosing Heero.

            And all that because of that idiot! If he’d be reasonable, he would make an accurate battle plan for all of them. Duo and Heero would separate the different army bases into two parts from the middle, and attack from there. Meanwhile the other Gundams would attack from the outside. It was so easy. Instead, Heero choose the stupidest way to complete this ‘objective’.

            He jumped up lightly onto the wheel behind Heero. They didn’t touch, but at least Duo was close. He tried to memorize this moment. It could be the last time he’d ever be close to Heero’s living body. He studied the sheets over Heero’s shoulder, but there was nothing new on there.

            If Wufei had known about all this – but he was sleeping peacefully – he’d have called it unjust! Unjust, because Duo had to stand here, smell Heero and feel his body heat, and he knew that it was all he’d ever get from him. Oh man, this life sucks. I’ll hope I’ll be one of those who die tonight...


            After a few moments, Heero nodded to himself.  This was the extent to which he could plan tonight.  He might as well eat and drink something; no use going into battle with any distractions.  Blankly, Heero turned and brushed past the pilot he had only absently noted was there.  Yes, the light touch was sweet, and just enough to make the ache worse.  Damnit... he angrily snapped off the strange feelings for the millionth time and shoved his confusion away yet again.  He stomped somewhat up the stairs, slammed the pad onto the desk in the empty room he shared with Trowa, and grabbed a glass.  Snatching up a square of tasteless rations, he also grabbed a bottle of what he assumed contained something drinkable.  He walked out onto the balcony and plopped down in the dark corner opposite of where he had sat last time.  He crossed his legs and settled onto the cold stone with a thud.  He poured the liquid into the glass before trying to read the label.  Well, it was in German, and he didn’t recognize any words.  No matter, if it could be swallowed, he would drink it.  He opened the package and broke off a piece of the tasteless rations he preferred to real food.  He chewed it mechanically, before taking a sip of the liquid.  It fizzed in his mouth and he registered it as mineral water.  Trowa must have brought it up some time.


            Duo did not turn around after the soldier had past him. It hurt him to know Heero was running away from him, again. Heero’s hate hurt Duo like nothing else did. He waited a while, watching the stars and the tree next to him. Even though it was night, ants were still busily walking up and down the trunk. Just like Heero Yuy, they never seemed to sleep. Maybe because their work was too important to them. They wouldn’t even mind if Duo squashed one of them, they’d just keep on working. But Gundam pilots were no ants – Duo would not be able to just keep on working without Heero. And Trowa, Quatre and Wufei would neither, but they would forget the pain, someday. Unlike Duo.

            He turned around and jumped down from the wheel, cursing Heero’s stubborn mind and his own love for the hundredth time that night. He climbed up the stairs, and let himself fall down on the upper one, blocking the way downstairs. He knew, Heero was on the balcony, so he would either have jump down and break his legs or he would have to pass Duo to get to his Gundam.

            His mind intended to go through the old procedure again: Why did Duo Maxwell love Heero? Why did love have to be so unfortunate? But then he wiped the thoughts away and just recalled the pleasure of standing next to Heero on the wheel, smelling and feeling him. Oh yeah, life was unjust!


            Heero alternately went from staring at the stone as he picked off pieces of the rations, to staring straight ahead as he chewed. 


            After a while Duo couldn’t stand waiting any longer. He knew he was a very impatient person, and he also knew it wasn’t good to go back up there and see Heero again. He anyway got up and crossed Heero’s room towards the balcony.

            He found the Japanese sitting, eating and drinking in a dark part of the balcony. He obviously had finished his battle plans, and was waiting for Duo to get out of his way by falling asleep or something. Duo wouldn’t grant him that pleasure. So, Duo thought crossing over to Heero, that’s it. At least one of us won’t be here tomorrow. A very unpleasant end of the friendship those two had had – if it could be called a friendship… He plopped down next to Heero, and watched the stars. It really was a pity, Duo thought, resigned, there would have been so much to share.

            Anyway, he would not let Heero go alone on this mission, no matter how useless this would be. Maybe a miracle could happen, or he overestimated the strength of the base and they would easily defeat OZ… Heero would not stop Duo from following him. What would he do? Sabotage Deathscythe… Oh, he’d better not!

            “And besides, Heero – what would you do to stop me from following you anyway?” Duo displayed his superior, but at this point, artificial smile.


            Heero glanced over at the pilot with his eyes alone before looking back straight ahead.

            “I will kill you.”


            Now this was interesting! So there would be a fight between those two? Duo would definitely not kill Heero – he would not be able to. Except… he could take the risk of seriously wounding Heero without killing him, so he would not be able to fight. However, he assumed that even half dead, Heero would shoot him. Well, if this anyway was the end of it, Duo could at least die in peace and tell Heero beforehand that he hadn’t tried to stop him for no reason. Though, Duo had to admit that it would have been much more interesting to die fighting next to Heero, instead of simply being killed by Heero.

            “Well, do that, Heero,” he said and got up, walking towards Heero’s room, “But let me tell you one thing: The moment I would have blown up, I would have told you… ai shiteru.”

            He left quickly, feeling tears welling up inside him. He didn’t want to cry! He was not going to cry, he told himself, but he knew he had to hide. If Heero had needed a reason to leave for the mission, Duo had just provided it – well, if he was lucky, Heero wouldn’t even care.

            Duo hid at the side of the house, kicking anything he found on the way and ending up leaned against the wall, tears streaming down his face. Graceful end.



            Heero stared straight ahead, only his eyes had just increased their size by about seven inches.  Did he... did he just say... did Duo just say that he loves me??  Complete wonder filled the stoic pilot until he realized... the entry... Duo must have read it and figured out what was wrong with him.  This was a joke...

            A prank...

            The braided pilot was infamous for pranks, practical jokes, his humor dancing on the line that separated  innocent poking fun and sadistic cruelty.

            Heero’s eyes narrowed dangerously.

            Duo had just crossed that line...

            The enraged pilot jumped to his feet and ran after him, his eyes blazing with their own inner light.  How DARE Duo make light of the pain and confusion that grasped at him!  He would teach that braided baka a lesson...
            The Japanese boy leapt out onto the patio, his dark eyes searching quickly.  Not here, must be close though.  Shuffling noises snatched his ears and he raced after it, coming out onto the side of the house.  The achingly familiar silhouette was leaning against the wall, quivering...

            Heero’s fury increased tenfold; the pilot was laughing at him as well!  Heero dashed down the sidewalk to the taller pilot, snarling internally.  He stopped in front of him and whipped forward, one arm pressed harshly across Duo’s neck and shoulder, slamming, and effectively pinning him to the wall.  Heero’s other hand grabbed one of Duo’s shoulders, his fingers clawing into the baka.  He leaned forward, so close that once again he could taste the other’s sweet breath. 

            He could never forgive him, never, never, never, never, never...!!!!!

            How dare you...!?” he growled out between clenched teeth, the words unintelligible.


            Duo let himself be pinned to the wall without fighting back. He was limp and weak, he just let it happen. He had expected Heero to be furious… he hadn’t expected Heero would understand that Duo couldn’t do anything about it. He held his eyes to the ground, unable to look into the dark blue eyes for the last time in his life. He knew his cheeks were wet, but it didn’t matter anymore.

            He didn’t really know what to do. He didn’t even feel the pain of Heero’s strong grip. So, he just started smiling.

            “Look at this… Duo Maxwell is crying. Strange, huh?” Duo said, a hysterical edge to his voice.

            Why he did that? Duo had no idea. Probably just to increase his own pain, hoping he could eventually hate Heero, but unfortunately he would never get rid of this familiar feeling when he was close to the Japanese pilot…


            Heero blinked and for a moment almost fell back away.  Crying... ?  Oh, maybe he means the wet stuff on his cheeks.  Heero’s anger returned and he slammed Duo into the wall again.

            “Your jokes aren’t funny, Maxwell!” he seethed with anger.  Why did Duo expect him to care about that crying thing when he had just played the cruelest joke on him?  Now he knew for certain Duo’s feelings on him- the pilot knew he was broken, had to know he was the source of Heero’s weakness and desires, and turned it fully against him just to laugh in his face.  He could never have imagined that beautiful baka being so unfathomably heartless...

            Heero was torn between inflicting pain upon Duo to make him feel just as bad as himself or kissing him.  He leaned closer to the boy, teeth still tightly clenched, his dark eyes darker with pain and anger.  “You went too far this time Duo!!”

            Duo was stunned, even though he didn’t show – Heero actually thought he was jesting with him?! – as if this was a thing he liked to jest about. Definitely not. How could Heero, that ice block, know, though? Duo shouldn’t wonder the Japanese thought it was a prank. Oh, how little that stupid boy knew! Duo lost his patent superior smile and tried to speak. It wasn’t easy, but at least he would have told the truth.

            “What joke?” He could hardly hold back another flood of tears. Heero kept torturing him without knowing.

            Heero snarled to himself.  “You said that y-y-y- what you said up there!  Don’t mess with me like that Duo, when you know I-... that’s beyond cruel, bastard!” he leaned in even closer to yell the words in his face.  His voice caught in his throat halfway through and he had to choke and force the words out, his voice sounding almost as shaky as Duo’s.

            What was happening to him??

            He couldn’t stay here, he couldn’t, he couldn’t...  He had made his point to the idiot. He needed alternately to kill or passionately kiss the pilot.  Instead of doing either, he felt himself pulling temptingly close to Duo’s lips before slamming him one last time into the wall, then running off.

            What else could he do?  He couldn’t trust himself around the heartless baka, and he didn’t need to kill him...  Heero had to get away from him.  The pain of unwelcome emotions burned even brighter than his receding anger, replacing the rage with something else he wasn’t accustomed to. 

            Heero stopped in the corridor and noticed the slightly open door which lead to the stair well, and one of the couple rooms in the basement.  Immediately, he went into the black darkness, sinking to the floor on the first platform at the end of the first set of stairs, and hugged his knees tightly to his chest, rocking back and forth some.

            Damn he was so confused... and he hurt so bad inside...


            Duo let himself sink down onto the floor once Heero had left. There was more he had to bear than he could take. He longed to just sit down and cry. His back hurt as he crouched down. No, he was not joking, but how should he tell Heero? And what would it serve either of them anyway?

            However, Duo forced himself to get up. He hadn’t completed his own mission yet: If Heero was getting Wing Zero ready now, he had to follow and stop him – if necessary, at the cost of his life. He held a hand to the rough wall and pulled himself back up. His eyes narrowed, Heero had injured him slightly. It was nothing compared to the injuries he had taken from the battlefield, and even less compared to the pain deep inside. He dragged himself inside, his only wish was to find Heero and see what he was planning to do.

            He stumbled through the corridor and tried to figure out where the Japanese would hide. The only path that lead to the Gundams was in the basement, but there was no light down there. Exhausted from all the pain on and in him, Duo leaned against the wall next to the basement door, which was not completely closed.

            Duo’s hand held his shoulder – it hurt. He inhaled the air through his teeth and tried to think. Where could Heero have gone? The balcony… would he end up jumping down after all? Just then, Duo heard a slight shuffle from the basement. He opened the door, and pushed himself into the darkness. He needed a few seconds to adjust to the darkness, but then he could see Heero’s outline in the shadows. The Japanese was sitting on the floor. Somehow relieved that he had not touched Wing Zero yet, Duo sank down on the stairs.


            Heero felt Duo’s presence and glanced in his direction.  But what concerned him more at the moment was that something was on his face.  His face?  Cautiously he lifted one hand to touch his cheek, finding it wet.  Both hands came up and he found the substance was coming from his eyes.  What was this?

            “Duo... there’s stuff coming out of my eyes...” he stated, staring at his glistening fingers as he felt more of the mysterious stuff streaming out of his eyes and down his cheeks.  His voice was small, but half-filled with wonder.  What was Duo’s mocking making his body do now?


            Duo nodded, even though Heero couldn’t see that in the darkness. At least they were talking. “You are crying,” he said, as if he was explaining that to a little child. He couldn’t even imagine Heero crying, but he would have expected Heero to know what it was, or what it meant. “…just like me,” he added, knowing that his own cheeks were constantly flooded.


            Heero nodded slightly.  At least now he knew what crying was.  He wrapped his arms back around his legs and hugged them tightly to his chest.  His voice was slightly hoarse, but he did his best to cover it up.  “You confuse me, Maxwell...”


            Duo looked over at Heero, now confused as well. Heero was crying because of him? Duo confused the other pilot? Why? Because of what he had said? Duo couldn’t believe that it would be possible - but what if Heero actually did care about what Duo felt for him? And then, he wondered how he should find out, and clear things up between them.

            “Heero. I don’t tend to joke about these kinds of things,” he said finally.


            Heero was silent a moment.  “I don’t understand.” he finally replied, referring to the words Duo had spoken to him on the balcony.  Love?  Him?  How could he possibly not be joking when he said that, someone as beautiful and lively as him loved someone as empty and lifeless as himself?

            But Duo’s serious demeanor was what made him think twice.  Maybe he was telling the truth, and he didn’t say that just to mock him...  Either way, Heero still didn’t understand; love was an emotion, therefore the Perfect Soldier was clueless.


            Duo slid down a few of the stairs, so he was closer to Heero, but not too close. He felt much more calm now. If there was a slight possibility that Heero was… but he didn’t want to think about it. If he could possibly turn Heero’s head from the mission and – even more important – make him stop crying, and save their friendship, it was all he wanted to do right now. So he tried to be comforting and restrained.

            “I meant what I was saying. Ai shiteru.... you know what that means, don’t you?” Duo wasn’t sure anymore what kind of emotions Heero really knew.


            “Technically, yes.” Heero replied stoically.  How could he explain to Duo that he knew what the words meant, but not the meaning behind them.  How he didn’t know what it meant to love, how to love, what it felt like, or even how to identify it.  He was undeniably ignorant of any knowledge relating to emotions, since his own were buried so deeply due to his training.

            Normally he would have just laughed at the idea, but ever since the aching began long ago, he hadn’t been able to do that.  He found himself wanting to find out, wanting to get that elusive knowledge; and he knew exactly from whom he wished to discover it with.  But how to communicate his ache, his need and his desperate confusion about it all?  He also lacked that skill...


            Duo had a hand on his braid again, something to hold on to. What was he supposed to do? Explain to Heero what love felt like?! It would be plain torture, but maybe… maybe Heero would partly understand Duo’s situation. Duo’s heartbeat increased as he took a deep breath before he started, not believing himself that he was going to put that into words.

            “For me… it means... It’s a strange feeling every time that person walks into the room. Every touch is a sensation running through my whole… body and,” – god, this was difficult – “all I want is to caress this person, cuddle up in arms, comfort and care for … him.” Duo thanked the darkness for hiding his hot face. Would he ever be able to look at Heero again? He doubted it!


            Heero’s eyes widened again in the second surprise he was handed this night.  Duo described what he had been wrestling with for the past months...  But, to want?  What was this?  All Heero knew was carrying out orders, being told what to do and doing it.  To want something...  Well, he wanted to go on those missions, does that count?  No, to want something for himself... 

            Want something for himself...  Woah, a totally new concept.

            And could Duo, possibly, mean he wanted those things from him?  From lifeless, killer Heero Yuy?  It certainly was the case if Duo meant it when he said he loved him.  So then, the baka really wasn’t just messing with him, he had meant it.  What does that mean for Heero then?

            Did he want the same from Duo?  Was that the aching sensation he felt in the pit of his stomach before it blossomed out into his whole body and even into his soul?

            He struggled with the words.  “I don’t know how to,... to w-want...”.  What was the point in those words?  He didn’t know... but he felt the need to vocalize his slowly clearing confusion and ache somehow to Duo.  To Duo only...


            Duo was lost in confusion. There was definitely something emotional in Heero’s voice, but did it mean that he felt anything close to what Duo felt? And was it even possible that Heero felt anything for him? Duo forced himself not to imagine that Heero possibly could share what Duo knew so well. If he did, he would say so! Or wouldn’t he? But how could he possibly explain what it meant to want? All he himself wanted was Heero, he felt that strange feeling only for him, but it could never be explained. The pain of confusion almost made him dizzy. He took another move towards Heero and sat down close to him, their bodies touching. And he hoped, and begged the other wouldn’t back away.

            Wanting. Hn.  “I can’t explain, Heero. I would if I could understand myself,” he admitted. Duo could understand anger, pain, joy, happiness and sadness - but love? How could anyone possibly understand love? “I am too confused.”


            Heero nodded some and shivered at the sudden touch of Duo’s body.  A sudden thought hit him – maybe that’s what the ache was.  I ache for him... I want him?  As he said he wanted me?  Did that mean he loved Duo?

            “You confuse me... “ he replied lowly, his mind traveling miles in seconds.  The confusion, the emotions... they were all connected to the baka.  He wanted Duo, he knew that now.  But did that translate as him loving Duo?  From what the other had said, it did.  He wanted to take Duo in his arms, feel his heart beating against his own and always keep the pilot safe.  At these realizations he felt warmth spread through him – a hazy sort of feeling, leaving him pleasantly blurry.  So these emotions... the one that replaced his anger was seeping away and almost all gone.  He felt close to exploding, want and the hazy warmth of, yes, love, reaching out to the boy beside him. 

            The confusion was gone now.  Yes, he loved Duo.  He was confused because he didn’t understand till now the new emotions.  But Duo had done his best to explain them to Heero and now Heero could understand...  That was why it had hurt so much when he thought Duo had hated him enough to make a cruel joke like that, which would have meant he felt nothing but spite for the Wing Zero pilot.  But the braided one wasn’t joking...  He loved him...

            The newly enlightened boy nodded to himself in the darkness.  So this was love, this heady feeling combined with the urgent need and want for the object of this love.  But what does he do about it?  Now he was posed with the problem of showing the desolate one beside him that he felt the same...


            I confuse him, Duo thought. In the same way, Heero confused Duo? Did that mean, Heero loved him? It could also mean that the strange description Duo had made was still not clear to Heero. He knew nothing to add. The rest of this could not be described, not even be understood.

I confuse him, he repeated to himself. Would he just add to the confusion if he kissed Heero? No, he could not possibly do something like that – but what Heero had said: Wanting – Duo had never put it that way, but it was true: He wanted Heero so bad. His body ached with the longing to kiss him now and here. He wondered, how long he would be able to resist that urge?

            “Heero,” Duo was fishing for the right words but couldn’t come up with anything spectacular. “You confuse me, too. You have been confusing me for a long time. … ai shiteru, Heero.” He wondered if Heero would ever understand these two meaningful words. And without realizing it, Duo searched for Heero’s hand in the darkness.


            Heero felt soft skin brush against his arm and he instinctively pulled away.  The boy hadn’t really any clue how to express himself.  Those two words just didn’t begin to cover the devotion and strength of this emotion he felt for the pilot.  He doubted he could even get the words past his choked throat.

            But another emotion, pleasant as well, bounced around inside him.  It gave him the strange urge to smile...  Was this happiness?  He supposed so, it made sense considering he knew now the one he loved returned this emotion.  Which smacked him back to his new problem: how to make Duo now understand. 

            He thought quickly, not wanting to make Duo wait in agony for much longer.  Hm... he remembered seeing some of a stupid television show Quatre was once watching... a soap opera, he had called it.  At any rate, he remembered a girl and a boy on the show telling each other their love and then grabbing each other and kissing.  Heero wondered for a moment if it would work, considering that neither of the pilots was a girl...

            He might as well try.  If it didn’t work, he’d just tell Duo his intent and let Duo tell him how to show it another way that would work with them both being male.

            Heero moved fast, twisting himself around so he ended up with a knee on either side of Duo’s hips, sitting in, and effectively straddling his lap, and his hands went to Duo’s neck gently, tilting his head down slightly so he could reach the other boy’s lips.  He leaned in close, his lips finding Duo’s delicious ones, making an awkward but heartfelt attempt at a passionate kiss.  He tried to communicate through his actions his love and desire, but he wasn’t sure at all if it worked in the least.


            Duo had thought he had blown everything once Heero had pulled away from him. However, feeling the one he loved sitting right on top of him was another, new sensation. He couldn’t even manage to gasp his name before their lips touched. He had no idea where Heero had learned that from considering that he usually was icy and had probably never seen anyone kiss - he was quite stunning at it. Duo’s eyes grew wide as he realized that this actually was happening! Heero kissed him! Heero returned his emotions!

            Duo could sense some awkwardness and insecurity in Heero’s approach – he probably didn’t know that what he was doing was the perfectly right thing! Duo slid his trembling arms around Heero’s upper body and pulled him closer, kissing back passionately and making sure to let Heero know that he felt very good about that.

            Heero – if you had any idea how much I have longed for this!

            Finally he could take hold of what he had found tonight – how sensational! He could close his eyes and feel nothing but the warm kiss and the spreading emotion running through his body.


            Heero had to pull back a moment later, gasping for breath.  Now what was this new sensation, this sudden inane desire to rip off their clothes and do... well, something, he didn’t know what.  But that kiss...

            He shivered silently in Duo’s arms, unable to do anything but gaze into those glimmering violet eyes, a wonderful warmth seeping into him; the euphoric feeling of loving and being loved in return.  Suddenly he wanted to kiss with Duo again, to touch Duo and do, well, something!  It was frustratingly confusing, but there was nothing he could do but acknowledge it and hope Duo might know what his wildly pounding heart demanded.

            “D-Duo..” his voice was shaky, the name almost a moan when it left his lips.  This was weird, but he didn’t care; all he cared about were those warm lips and gentle arms around him.

             Duo smiled, breathing hard, and picked the stronger one up from the floor. “You know what it means,” he smiled, “Ai shiteru.” He carefully carried Heero up the stairs, cuddling him some and carried him over to his room. The strong urge to express all the love he carried inside had taken hold of him, and the only thing that would stop him was Heero – if he wanted to.

            But for any other purpose he carefully locked the door to his and Quatre’s room and placed Heero on the sofa. Was he doing the wrong thing? He somehow hoped he could trust Heero to tell him if he did. He stared into the dark blue eyes, and crawled onto the sofa next to the beautiful Japanese coming closer for another kiss. Duo knew what he wanted, but did Heero have any idea what it meant?

            “Heero…” he said softly as they were close...

            He carefully kissed Heero, and it was as sparkling as it had been before. Every spot they touched each other was burning with emotion and anticipation. Duo wanted Heero completely, his body and soul ached for him more than ever.

            Heero returned the kiss, losing his awkwardness.  He was nothing if not a quick learner.  He couldn’t really understand why, but he was pleased Duo had locked the door.  He was also pleased the other pilot was near him on the sofa and kissing him.  That inane thought of ripping their clothes off returned to him, but he shrugged it aside.  All he wanted was Duo...

            The pilot scooted closer.  He wasn’t about to admit that he liked being carried...  Heero gently placed a hand on Duo’s neck.  Kissing was all he could think of... he didn’t know what else it was he longed for, but it was something.  He racked his hazy mind for an answer, a clue, a small hint but he drew a blank.  Touching Duo’s neck and kissing him was the extent of his romantic knowledge.

            As his tongue met Duo’s, he shivered and leaned in closer, eagerly hoping for more.  But what was more?!  Heero’s hands were starting to get disobedient and urged to run along the rest of the other pilot’s body, but the Japanese boy refused to let them wander; what if that was against the rules of this exchange of affection?  He had never seen or heard of it, so he didn’t allow it to happen.

            Heero decided enough was enough.  He had to know.  He pulled back again, catching his breath in hard gasps, his eyes locked on Duo’s beautiful ones.  “D-Duo, is it okay to want more?  Is there more than this?” he nodded to his hand on Duo’s neck.  He was extremely flushed, almost giddy with the feeling of kissing his loved one.  And though he didn’t even recognize it, he was extremely excited by it as well. 


            Duo looked at Heero startled – Heero really didn’t know what else there was to discover. He smiled at the sweet innocence and raised the corner of his mouth in a cunning expression.

”It’s alright – there is a lot more… Relax and I will show you…” and with these words he let go of all his doubts to show Heero whatever he didn’t know…


((Line: No, you hentais! We didn’t go that far! Instead of kissing we just said Ai Shiteru and left Heero and Duo to themselves!!!))

            ((Clees: Heheheheheheheeheeeee!!!! *demented grin* I think Line wants to make this a dirty lemon!!!!!! AAAAAAAHHHHHH!!! *hides virgin eyes and ears*))

            ((Line: I don’t know where Clees got that idea from – actually she is the one who wants to make this dirty, but never mind – BUT I would never want to make these 59 pages of art a lemon!!! *evil glare at Clees pointing at her eyes* Possibly the only part really virgin on her… BÄH!))

            ((Clees: Pah!, Line is a dirty little hentai freak!  And the virgin bit... that’s for my future girlfriend to decide! *evil and raunchy wink*  Don’t be upset with me for your nasty little desires!  Gods’ know the poor boys have their sex-lives recorded enough in stories!))

            ((Line: Exactly, we don’t need to write a lemon as well! And I don’t have any nasty little desires!!! Stop freaking! The only want I have is someone  and it’s not a dirty desire! *Line’s patent Glare’o’Death*))

            ((Clees: *returns with her version of Glare’O’Death, laughing evily* You forget, m’dear, IIII had all that night to practice and master the Glare’O’Death... you dun stand a chance!!!  *giggles* Oops, I’ve talking enough that my kitten-ebonics is kickin’in..oi, again!))

            ((Lines: *sees through Clees’ thoughts and gets a nose bleed* I have enough of this place! This is unjust and dishonorable! I’ll go to sleep!!!))

            ((Clees: OH, leave Wuffi-kins outta this!  *smacksmacksmacksmack* No, you stay awake and play with MEEE!!!!))