Wufei threw his ruck sack into a corner with unnecessary force, expelling his breath loudly. "Good lord," he grumbled. "I never thought I'd be so glad to leave work."

Heero paused from where he was shrugging out of his uniform jacket, frowning in query.

"If I see one more heart balloon, pink stuffed bear, or box of chocolate, I'm going to scream," Wufei promised, practically tearing off his own jacket.

Heero watched his roommate, trying to judge just how irritable the other man was. They'd spent a week on a recon mission, only to return to an office that had apparently gone quite insane. Confessions, giggling, cards, balloons, and the like had been much in evidence. The importance of the date had not occurred to either man until they'd looked upon the transformed office in mild horror.

"I never pegged Une for the sappy type," Wufei growled. "You know none of them would have gotten away with making the place look so trashy if she hadn't given the go-ahead." He scowled in distaste. "I don't think Preventers should be allowed to act like that at work. How am I supposed to take Johnson seriously after I saw her squealing like a schoolgirl over some damned flower delivery?"

"Mm." Heero set his own ruck sack aside, glancing in the direction of the kitchen.

"Your turn to cook dinner." Wufei lifted his arm and gave himself a delicate sniff, wrinkling his nose. "I'm going to take a shower." He headed for the kitchen, only to be forced to come to an abrupt halt when Heero dodged in front of him.

"I thought you were taking a shower."

Wufei glared at him. "I'd like a drink of water, if it's all right with Your Majesty. You going to move, or what, Yuy?"

Heero hesitated.

Wufei stepped around him and strode to the kitchen, still complaining. Heero trailed after him in tense silence. "I don't understand this inane holiday, and I can't believe grown adults let themselves get sucked into the whole commercialism of it." He entered the kitchen, took two steps towards the sink, and froze.

Heero stopped behind him.

Wufei stared some more. Finally he lifted a finger to point accusingly. "What. Is that."

Heero shifted his weight, which was as close to fidgeting as Heero Yuy got. "...Chocolate."

"Yes, I can see that. Thank you, Captain Obvious." Wufei was staring at the tiny heart-shaped box as if it were about to leap off the table and tear out his jugular. It was one of those cheap ones they sold in every grocery store across the continent, the kind that had maybe five pieces of candy in it. "What is it doing HERE?"

"....It was Duo's idea," Heero muttered, shifting the blame quickly.

"Idea." Wufei turned slightly to stare incredulously at his partner. "He left us chocolate?" He moved over to the table and snatched up the small box, missing Heero's wince. "How did the idiot even get in here? He has a strange idea of a jo--" He'd lifted it to toss it towards the wastebin, but something scrawled on the back of the box in thick black marker caught his eye. He stood frozen, arm still poised to throw, eyes glued to the names filling in the provided "To" and "From" lines.

To: Wufei, From: Heero.

It most certainly was NOT Duo's slanted handwriting. He'd recognize this all-caps bold script anywhere. He'd seen it enough in the margins of his roommate's field notes. He dragged his eyes to the side to stare at Heero, who was scowling weakly and being very careful not to meet his gaze.

"He was talking about this custom right before we left, after I mentioned what day we'd return from our mission." Heero fixed his eyes on a spot on the wall as if it was the most fascinating thing in the world, voice still subdued with just the faintest hint of defensiveness to it. "I asked him if it would be appropriate to get you something, seeing how it's a gift-giving holiday and you and I have been partners so long."

Wufei forced himself to lower his arm. "And he suggested you get me chocolates?" he repeated slowly, still staring at Heero more than a little warily.

"Well, I didn't think you'd appreciate the flower idea."

"Most definitely not," Wufei snapped.

Heero waved vaguely in the direction of the trash can. "You can throw them away. They're no good anymore anyway."

Wufei looked at him hard, then glanced at the candy box again. "...You do realize that this is a romantic holiday, don't you?"

Heero's jaw twitched, but he didn't answer right away. When he did, he evaded the question altogether. "Take your shower. I'll start dinner."

Wufei set the box carefully on the table and walked over to his partner, eyeing him thoughtfully. Heero met his gaze defiantly.

They stood locked in a stare-down for several long moments until Wufei abruptly looked away, apparently dismissing the whole subject. "I'll try not to use up all the hot water." He reached into his back pocket after a moment's hesitation and slapped something against Heero's chest as he passed him in the doorway. "Make something quick; I could eat a horse."

Heero stared blankly at the crumpled envelope that had been forced upon him. After a moment, he opened it hesitantly and tugged out the simple card inside. He read it quickly, blinked in surprise, and turned to voice a question, but Wufei had already disappeared into the bathroom.

After a moment, Heero felt the slightest of smiles tugging at his mouth. Setting the Valentine's Card beside the box of chocolate, he began searching through the cabinets for something to eat, heart suspiciously light.