Chance (part 7)
Heero lay in a bloody heap on the soiled ground, his self-destructed gundam laying slain and littering the earth in many pieces. Duo ran to him, his arms carefully lifting the broken body and cradling it to his chest.
"Heero, come on. Wake up, buddy. Please!" Mortal red stained through his clothing and soaking into the covered flesh. Duo brushed away the boy's bangs with his palm before letting his fingers trace paths of concern over a face of pain. They smoothed over closed eyes and brushed softly over stilled lips. Duo gasped to hold back tears but they fell despite. Heero wasn't breathing. His fingers sought Heero's pulse but found nothing but stillness. Nothing. Dead.
Bleeding too quickly and suffering from too many injuries, even revival at this stage would not work. Shinigami had won this battle.
"Heero! Damnit, don't do this. Please! Please God don't take him too!"
Tears ran freely down his cheeks and melded with the foreign blood on his face.
Awake. Duo starred at the ceiling, his pulse racing and his breathing quickened. He felt like he had run a triathlon and his body reacted as though he had. His hands were shaking. His face and clothes were drenched in perspiration. The sheets lay either tangled about his limbs or thrown over the side of the bed to gather at the floor. Duo did his best to sit up but groaned and fell back into his pillow. It seemed no matter how many times he told himself Heero was not dead, he would never believe it. He raised his head to glance at the other bed to at the very least prove to his eyes that Heero remained on this earth but the body under the covers was not Heero's. The raven dark hair pulled back neatly into a low ponytail was evidence enough. Besides, it didn't even make the same sounds Heero did when he slept. This body was less animated not to mention he was facing the wall. Heero never faced the wall. He always slept facing the door.
Since when did you become an expert on Heero's sleeping habits? he asked himself, finding more strength to sit up as he did.
I don't know. He looks human, not machine like, when he sleeps. Kinda makes you remember he's mortal. Especially when he does that pout face when his dream world isn't to his liking. I wonder if he knows how cute he looks when he sleeps.
Duo threw the rest of the sheets and covers to the floor. There was little use in them anyway. He needed a drink. Since when have you been categorizing Heero's little expressions as "cute"?
Duo chuckled at himself, I'm having a conversation with my curiosity. I've lost it for sure this time. Oh well. I don't know that either. I guess it started out as admiration but… things have changed. Heero's still the same Heero but there's just so much more to him now. I've seen around that perfect soldier façade and I like what I saw. I probably just imagine it all but sometimes it seems as though maybe he thinks just a little bit more for me than any of the others. Maybe I just want him to. Lately it's been nothing but death glares and jibes at my pride though. Still, of all the thing he could have said, he told me I have nice legs. Oh that is it, I'm not talking to you anymore. This is getting a bit… weird. What am I thinking? That Heero likes me? As in, likes me likes me? Come on. You're delusional Duo Maxwell. Go back to bed and you'll see. In the morning he'll walk past with that patented "…" and not say another word all day. Hm… even his silence makes sense. It's a language all on it's own. I should write a book on "How to speak Heero". Could be a best seller.
Duo stood and opened the bedroom door, careful not to make a sound for fear or awakening Wufei. The last thing he wanted to do was to explain to him what was going on. Wufei was just a little too insightful. There were just some things he didn't want pointed out right now. His mind had had enough for one night. Duo tiptoed through the hall and stopped as he came to the stairs. Heero's room was close by. That damn dream came back to mind and Duo found his feet taking him towards the room before his mind could register the motion. Within seconds, he was in the room with the door shut behind him. The body in this bed definitely belonged to one Heero Yuy. Duo had practically memorized the guy's sleeping posture, crazy as it sounded. Heero lay still and silent on the bed, moonlight caressing his features. Duo breathed in a deep, quivering intake. Too still. Too quiet. He moved quickly to the bedside and lay his hand over the boy's face, not close enough to touch but enough to catch any affirming breath. Was that wind though? A breeze from the fan? Damnit. Duo leaned over till his cheek was just above Heero's lips, his braid tumbling to the bed over his shoulder. Warm breath fell lightly against his face and he sighed at the confirmation, all doubts washed away.
Strange hands clamped around his long braid and pulled hard. Scornful prussian eyes glared, "What the hell do you think you're doing?"
Duo was speechless, his face held in place over Heero's by the other boys firm grip on his hair, "Um.. I know this probably looks bad but it's not what you think." Duo cringed inwardly. Judging only but what the scenario looked like, things looked very bad indeed. Duo tried to pull away from him but Heero seemed none to eager to let go.
"Then explain. Quickly."
Duo wanted to look away. Those prussian beauties were just a little to judgmental for his own to stand, "I had a nightmare. That's all. You died and I just wanted to make sure you were okay. Really."
Heero grunted and let go of the braid, "Get out of here Duo and go to bed."
Duo nodded solemnly and walked towards the door, not brave enough to turn his back on his friend. Bad move. The same tennis shoes that had caught him by surprise the day before had suddenly reappeared beneath his bare feet once again. His footing lost, Duo fell to the floor.
"I guess I should start expecting that or at least start looking out for those, ne Heero?"
"Go to bed, Duo!"
Duo sighed and rubbed his sore backside, "I'm going. I'm going." Duo stood, his hands now concentrating on the pain in his scalp after being pulled on for so long, "Why didn't I see you today. Heero? It was almost like you were avoiding me."
"I just had other places to be."
"Oh." Duo crossed to the door but stopped again and turned towards the dresser, jumping up and sitting on the cool hard wood.
Heero narrowed his eyes in curiosity and displeasure, "What are you doing?"
"I want to ask you something. I figured that since you're already awake you might want to-"
"It's almost three o'clock in the mor-"
"It's important to me, Heero. You don't have to talk back. Just listen." Duo pleaded.
Heero kept his gaze harsh as he sat up, Chance's words playing in his mind. You knew Duo would want to talk to me tonight but you never told me about what or what I was supposed to do. All I know is that tonight will shape my destiny. Alright then. Duo, let's see where this takes us.
"Even if I tell you no, you're still going to talk. Just get it over with."
Duo smiled gently, "Arigato, Heero. I guess it's silly really. What I want to talk to you about. It's just something I need to know. Ask Wufei. I've been asking a lot of pointless questions all day long."
"Have you found out anything to your satisfaction?"
"Some things. Wufei had some good suggestions." Duo sighed, "I guess I should get to the point of all this, huh? The sooner I'm done the sooner you can return to sleep. Heero… I don't suppose you've noticed but the way things have been going lately, it doesn't look as thought this war will ever end. Like we just keep fighting and fighting but nothing ever gets accomplished in the long run."
"All wars end in time. We've just got to keep fighting till things are over and we're victorious."
"That's what I'm talking about." Duo unconsciously fidgeted with the gold cross around his neck, "If the other side is as stubborn as us, who's to say the battle will ever end? I know you'll never give up but some of us don't have that kind of mindset. People die everyday because of the battle we fight and we go out and kill even more the next. How many people have to die till someone gets smart and surrenders? We could end a lot of misery if we all just gave in, right?"
Heero got out of bed slowly but with almost predatorial movements. In seconds he was beside Duo and in the same duration, Duo was knocked off the dresser by his closed fist.
"If you still want to surrender than I might just have to kill you. I suggest you do the honorable thing and just kill yourself if indeed you can't see what you're doing in this war is right. We fight because we have to. There is too much at stake not to fight and at this stage, giving up is not an option. I would have thought of anyone, you'd know that."
Duo kept his gaze to the floor, his hand protecting his swelling jaw from further damage Heero might try to inflict, "You're right. I guess I've just been waiting for someone else to say it. I'm a lost soul in these battles, aren't I Heero? I can't fight cause I've lost faith in what I fight for and I can't sit back because I'm too involved. I'll save you the trouble of putting me to rest though, Heero. I'll take care of both myself and my gundam next time we battle. Who knows. Maybe I'll take out a few enemy pilots with me." Duo looked up and was surprised to say the least. Heero's face was ghostly pale and his eyes larger than he had ever seen them. Was he.. scared?
Heero fell to his knees beside him, much to Duo's further surprise. Heero lowered his head, "Duo, I didn't mean it like that… I don't want you to kill yourself."
"You mean you don't want me to self-destruct and blow a perfectly good gundam to pieces."
"No!" Heero grabbed Duo's wrist in his hand, "That's not what I mean. I was just trying to scare you. I didn't think you'd actually take me seriously." Heero pulled Duo so that he looked his in the eyes, "Why would you do it?"
Duo shrank under his gaze, "I told you. I can't fight anymore. I've lost hope in my dreams."
"Love, family.. mostly love though. I thought for a while that I had friendship but… you acted like you hated me and I figured I'd lost that as well." He took to looking at Heero's feet. Perfect feet. Gee, is there anything not perfect about you?
"I don't hate you Duo. I'm just.. confused. I… I don't know what's going on but I never hated you. Never."
Duo nodded though the words didn't quite reach his mind, "Wufei said I needed a new dream, someone to follow and believe in when all else failed. I wanted to believe in you, Heero."
Wanted to? "Why did you change your mind?"
Cause I can't ignore the way I feel about you and simply believing you'll keep me sane isn't enough. Not anymore. "I didn't exactly change my mind. There are just certain criteria I can't live up to."
Heero watched the many emotions that crossed between those amethyst eyes. Sadness, disappointment, depression. Where has your smile gone, Duo?
<"If I were to tell you that in five years time, you will have been more concerned over Duo's happiness than that of the world's, would you believe me?">
<"What are you feeling for Duo Maxwell?">
<"Do you love him?">
Duo raised his head, having thought he had heard the tiny whisper from the kneeling boy, "Did you say something?"
Heero shook his head and reached out with one hand to open the drawer of this bedside table. He took out a Swiss Army Knife and flipped out a sharp blade. Duo seemed to take it the wrong way.
"So, you really are going to kill me, huh? I don't care. I've always said it was my destiny to be killed by you."
Heero reached and enclosed Duo's cross in his own hands, pulling hard and snapping it off its owner's neck. Duo gasped in surprise then took on an authoritative posture and voice, "Hey, that's mine. Give it back, Heero!"
Heero stood and leapt to the other side of the bed, sitting down on the mattress with the cross in one hand and his knife in the other.
Duo was right behind him, "I'm not kidding, Heero! That is MY cross and I swear if you do anything to it I'll-Heero!" he leapt toward the said boy as the knife began to cut deeply into the metal of his prized possession. Heero saw him coming and moved before Duo fell, the latter hitting the mattress with a soft thud. Quickly and before the other boy knew what was happening, Heero got onto the bed and sat on his back, pinning Duo's arms to his side with his knees. Duo struggled but Heero was stronger. He could hear the knife.
"Heero! Stop it, please! That was a gift from Father Maxwell! Stop whatever you're doing and just give it back! Oh, please Heero, give it back!"
"Shhh. You'll wake everyone else. If they come barging in here, I'll leave you to do the explaining."
Duo bit his lip. With him pinned to the bed and Heero sitting on his lower back… Judging only but what the scenario looked like, things looked very bad indeed. He hadn't noticed when the scratching sounds had ended or when the golden shiny object had been replaced in his view.
At Heero's words, Duo looked up. His cross dangled before his eyes, the back of it facing him. A few words were scratched into it, simple but moving none the less.
Heero and Duo, in life and death.
Heero slid off his back and took the cross with him, bringing both Duo's eyes and attention with him.
"There is no criteria to live up to, Duo. You are who you are and for that…. I love you."
Duo couldn't have sat up quicker had the bed beneath him exploded, "You… you love me?" Heero nodded and reached behind Duo's head to replace the cross around its rightful owner, "I want to be your dream, Duo. I want you to believe in me. I want to make your dreams come true. If you'll let me, that is."
Duo hesitated not a moment. With Heero's arms laced under his hair to clasp his necklace together, Duo enclosed Heero in his own, embracing him tightly around the waist, "I want you to, Heero. I love you. I love you." His head fell neatly under Heero's chin. A perfect fit. Perfect. And you're mine. In life and death.
Heero brushed the soft chestnut hair with his hand, its smell becoming intoxicating and somewhat narcotic. He could feel something inside him fall into place as it had never done before. Was this what you were telling me, Chance? I frankly don't care. You say my future is doomed but if this is the wrong path then to hell with the right one. I never want to leave him. I never want to do anything but be at his side. You were right about one thing though. Tonight has changed my life forever.
Duo's breathing suddenly became more evenly paced and arms loosened, however slightly, from around his waist. Heero tipped his head back and smiled. Duo was asleep. Though whatever controversy it would create in the morning, Heero laid Duo back against the bed and pulled the covers up over him. He'd sleep with him tonight. Heero slipped between the sheets and snuggled close to the warmth in his bed. Foreign as it was, Heero loved the feel of Duo next to him. He sighed in length and casually wrapped one arm around the other body, his hand resting on the gold cross.
This is my promise to you, Duo. I will always love you. Always.
His eyes fell closed and he joined his friend in sweet slumber.
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