Chance (part 6)
<"You hung up last night.">
"I know, Chance."
Damnit, you know practically everything, so why are you asking me this? Does it make that much of a difference for me to say it?
"It's not important why I did it. You know why I called you this time. I want to know more."
<"I know you do but there's not much more I can tell you unless you tell me what I want to know. What does Duo mean to you, Heero. Is he just a friend, or more?">
"He's a boy."
<"Does that really make a difference?">
"Why are you asking me this? What does this have to do with anything? I just want to know what's wrong with my future."
<"This has everything to do with your future. Heero, do you love Duo?">
Love?! "Stop asking me these things. Get to the point already!"
There was a saddened sigh on the other line, <"Listen to me, before the war ends Duo will ask you-">
Heero jumped in his seat as cold liquid passed over him, soaking his nightclothes.
"Oh man, I am _so_ sorry!" Duo said from his place on the floor. In his hand was an empty glass, its former contents spilled all around the room. He stood up and ran for a towel, bringing it back to mop up the wet floor.
Heero growled in agitation and placed the phone back to his ear, "Go on, Chance."
Heero shook the phone and tried again but nothing worked. Broken. Heero glared angrily at Duo who failed to meet his gaze.
"I really am sorry, Heero," he absently continued, "It's hot outside tonight and I thought that maybe you would like some lemonade. I guess I should have been looking out for those shoes by the door, ne?"
He looked up and shrank under Heero's sharp prussian eyes, "I really didn't mean to…" he stood with the towel and walked towards Heero, taking a corner to wipe off some of the lemonade on his cheeks.
Heero didn't budge and kept his gaze locked on Duo who gently dried his face. Duo held Heero's face still with his other hand though it really wasn't necessary. Heero wasn't fighting against his touch. Duo looked so pitiful, Heero noticed. Then again, it was probably just the absence of his smile.
"Did I break your phone?" Duo asked, breaking the silence.
Heero nodded, or rather tried to. Duo's hands kept his face straight and still.
"I can fix it. I know I can."
"It doesn't matter. Take it if you want. It's useless to me now."
Duo sighed and moved away, picking the phone out of Heero's hand, "Are you mad at me?"
"You broke my satellite phone."
"Not about that. Did I do something wrong to make you move out of our room? I didn't mean to be so annoying and talkative but I can't help it and I just don't want anyone to be mad at me and I-"
Duo's face fell from a look of guilty concern to deeply saddened, "Yeah, yeah. I know. I'll see what I can do about your phone. Sorry for disturbing you, Heero." He walked out the door and closed it behind him.
Heero looked on after him and sighed. Maybe it was better that he didn't know what Chance was going to tell him. He'd find out on his own, right? Who was this guy to tell him what future was wrong and what future was right anyway! Heero sat back on his bed and starred at the ceiling fan as it swayed with each spin of its blades.
Who did that chance guy think he was, asking me what my feelings for Duo were. Duo is my friend, nothing more. Why should I care about his happiness. Why should I worry whether or not I hurt his feelings. Why do the words mean more than the feeling? Duo is my friend and nothing more. I don't lo… love him. Just because I worry after a mission whether he's coming back in one piece doesn't mean a thing. Just because I can't go a day without seeing his smile doesn't mean anything. Just because I can't be satisfied unless I hear him laugh doesn't mean I love him. Cause there's more to it. Love that is. There had got to be more to love than that. I can live without Duo and he can live without me. We're friends, nothing more. A soldier has no time for love. A perfect soldier can live without.
"I don't love Duo Maxwell."
When Heero awoke the next morning, Duo was gone. He went to the kitchen expecting to see him pigging out on all the Lucky Charms but there was no trace of him except for the empty cereal box in the trash. Duo never got up earlier than him. Usually. He went to the living room expecting to see him sitting in front of the television watching morning cartoons. He wasn't there either. Trowa sat on the couch again, reading the same book he had been engrossed in for the past two days.
"Trowa, have you seen Duo?" he asked.
Trowa looked up for a moment then returned to his book, "I thought I saw him go outside. He said something about needing to go for a walk."
Heero nodded in appreciation and left the house, his feet guiding him towards the sounds of speech and life. Apparently, Duo hadn't walked very far at all. He stood inside the hanger, chatting to Wufei who worked diligently on his "Nataku". Heero felt the hairs on the back of his neck rise as Duo's fingers gently rubbed the smooth surface of his friend's gundam. Duo's voice was loud but not loud enough to carry from his end of the hanger to Heero's ears. He watched as Duo leapt into the Shenlon, his feet dangling over the side of its cockpit hatch. He was sitting near Wufei. Heero looked at the black haired man scornfully as Duo's smile faded.
What the hell are you telling him, Wufei? Can't you see what you're doing to him?
He watched as Duo fumbled with the fabric of his pants as he did when situations turned awkward for him. He noted how Duo's eyes, even from this distance, seemed duller and less alive. He'd only seen Duo look that way once in his time of knowing the braided baka. When he'd told him about the little girl and her puppy, the ones who died because of his miscalculation long before they'd met. Duo had put an arm around him and squeezed his shoulders tightly, not saying a word. It was more comforting that words could ever express. To just have someone sit there, not trying to emphasize or make you feel better. Just someone there to be with you. As he watched he prayed Duo wouldn't do the same for Wufei who seemed just as somber as Duo. Those arms were his to be held in and no one else's. Heero's eyes flashed wide. Was he… jealous? Jealous of Duo's attention to Wufei? Impossible. He was just… just…
Duo smiled and waved Wufei good-bye before leaping out of the cockpit and walking down to the floor. Heero pressed against the shadows and watched Duo walk away. His feet followed before his mind registered. In time, he found himself standing behind a tree, Duo sitting and leaning against the other side. Duo didn't see him. Heero stood against the tree and listened to the grunts and exasperated sighs as Duo worked on.. something. He chanced a glance around the tree and noted with surprise the object Duo worked on was his satellite phone.
"Damnit. Why won't you work? If you don't work then Heero will never forgive me. You mean a lot to him. A lot more than I do. You're lucky, ya know that? Hands and tools can fix a broken screw or a loose wire. You can't fix a broken heart though. Damnit it. I really blew it this time. That's why you need to work for me, okay? If I fix you then Heero will be so happy that he'll promise to be my dream, like Wufei said I should find. Heero's prefect for the job, don't you think so? He'll never feel like I do. He never doubts anything. He goes by what his emotions tell him and he always comes up on top. If I follow him, maybe some of that luck will rub off on me. Maybe I can become a perfect soldier too. That's what Heero would want, isn't it? K'so! Get in there you stupid, stupid screw!"
Heero pushed away from the tree and began his walk back to the safe house. Duo still worked behind the tree, oblivious to the fact that Hero had been there, listening to him. Though Heero hadn't much of an idea as to what Duo was saying, he could get the gist of it. Duo admired him greatly. So much that he wanted to live his life in Heero's shadow.
No, Duo. I won't let you walk my path. I don't love you, Duo but I won't take you down with me when I fall. I don't care, but I won't watch as you let me guide you into my realm of hell. You have your dreams and I have mine. Let us keep it that way. It's safer that way. For both of us. Apart.
Heero stepped out of the shower with a twinge of.. something.. nipping at the back of his mind. He passed it off as nothing as he wrapped the towel around his waist and headed out the door. He paused briefly in front of the fogged up mirror to wipe away the moisture collected on its smooth surface and froze. Reflected in the mirror was his hand, clean of any mark… or scar. He looked at his other hand, panic seizing him. Nothing. His scar was gone. His promise made in blood had never been.
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