The Best Birthday Ever
Duo walked into the room, smiling. Of course he was smiling; today was a big day for him. He saw Heero sitting on the couch, watching the late show on TV. So, he walked up, nuzzled Heero, and gave him a small kiss. "So...do you know what today is?" Heero gave him a typical blank look and said, "No, why, is something special going on today that I should know about?" Duo jumped off the couch, his violet eyes quickly filling with tears. "Heero, how could you? All I ever wanted...ever asked of you...was that you remember the 9th and you forgot again!" He blindly ran out the door, sobbing as hard as was humanly possible. Heero watched him leave, a little shocked and more than a little confused. Ah well, Duo flew into these wild moods every once in a while. He'd get over it.
Heero walked over and started up his laptop. His battery had gone dead, thereby forcing him offline for some time now. As it purred to life, a small window popped up on the screen: "DON'T FORGET: DUO'S BIRTHDAY THE 9TH." He had a horrifying shock of reality - today was the ninth! He had forgotten another important date!
Duo had always been so understanding about his terrible memory lapses. When he forgot their anniversary, he was forgiven. When he missed going on their dates, Duo always forgave him. He even missed a birthday party that Duo had spent months arranging for him. It had taken Duo a little while, but he had forgiven Heero with a kiss and loving hug.
Heero pushed his chair back and put his head in his hands. Oh, he was such a baka sometimes! Duo only ever asked one thing of him, and here he had blown it. It was too late to buy anything in the stores, but he had to do something! He couldn't risk losing the only true light that had ever come into his life. He set to work on his laptop.
Duo was sitting beside his favorite rock in the garden, crying his eyes out. He was resting his head on the rock when he looked up at a small tree near him. He saw some small writing in the bark, so he moved closer to read it. There were a few roughly-hewn words in the bark, as though made by a small boy unaccustomed to using a knife. He moved his fingers over them as he read them in the moonlight: HY loves DM 2/9. He started crying again. Heero had carved these last year on his birthday, the first time he'd ever said "I love you." He put his head back on his rock and cried.
He heard a stick crack behind him and felt a hand on his shoulder. He stiffened. "Heero, if that's you, you can just stay away from me." The hand tightened. Duo whirled around, whipping Quatre with his braid in the process. "Ow!" Duo sweatdropped. "Oh...hey Quatre. Sorry 'bout that." Quatre sat down next to him, clutching something in his hand. "Heero forgot again, ne?" Duo nodded, a silent tear dripping down his cheek. "Well, this is from Trowa and me," he said, handing Duo the small box he had had clutched in his hand. Duo slowly unwrapped it and opened the small jewelry box. Inside was a small gold filigree bracelet with a cross on it that exactly matched his necklace. He gave Quatre a big hug. "Thanks a lot, Quatre. But it's getting late, I better be getting home now."
Heero looked out the window, tired from all his typing and clicking. The garden was so beautiful this time of night. There was the tree where he had put the initials, and...wait! What was that? He grabbed his binoculars. Duo was in Quatre's arms! Oh, great. Just what he needed...to see his love running straight into the arms of his friend because he'd blown it yet another time. He turned away, blinking tears out of his eyes and eventually drifting off into a disturbed sleep.
When he awoke, he got up and walked into the bedroom. He gently sat down on the edge of the bed and reached over to touch Duo, assure him that it was all a big mistake, but Duo wasn't there. He flopped over onto his stomach and buried his face in Duo's pillow. He could still smell a hint of his favorite shampoo mixed with a touch of his cologne. "I bet Duo's leaving me for Quatre," he thought. "I wouldn't blame him; in fact I deserve it!"
He was so absorbed in his self-criticizing thoughts that he didn't even notice Duo come in. Strong yet gentle hands began massaging his shoulders. "Trowa, is that you?" came out from under Duo's pillow. Duo sat back as though he had been slapped, quickly removing his hands from Heero. "Heero...are you cheating on me?" Heero turned and looked at him, the hurt all too apparent in his eyes. "I think I should be asking you that. I just saw you and Quatre out in the garden, so I figured he and Trowa had broken up and Trowa was coming over to lick his wounds. So, when are you going to announce to everyone that you've moved on?" Duo sat there, openmouthed and evidently astonished, then started laughing his head off. "Heero, you jealous baka! Quatre just gave me a birthday present, and I gave him a hug to thank him." Heero smacked his forehead, then grabbed Duo and pulled him tight. "Duo, I'm so sorry..." he started, but Duo put a finger on his lips to silence him. "Shhh...it's ok..." he offered, then Heero blew up. "No, it's not ok!!!! I always pull this crap on you! Anytime there's something important to you, I always forget! It kills me inside to see that hurt look on your face, knowing I'm the one that caused it! I don't want to lose you, because I love you!" Duo stopped him at that with a fiery kiss. "Heero....quit ranting, you'll wake everyone in the neighborhood up! Now, please, just listen to me. I love you too, that's why I always forgive you. And I know I always said I wanted to wait...that I wasn't ready....but please, Heero....I want you to give me the best birthday present you ever could....would you be my first?" His only answer was Heero kissing him back, gently pulling the band out of his hair, and starting to take off his shirt.
Sunlight came through the window, spreading across Duo and Heero's faces.
Duo awoke to find Heero's arms tightly encircling his chest, his hair possessively wrapped around Heero's fist. He smiled and snuggled back into Heero's warm embrace, remembering last night.
Suddenly, there was a loud knock on the door downstairs. Not wanting to wake Heero up, Duo gently untangled his hair from Heero's hand, pulled it back into a ponytail, then slipped on a pair of boxers and crept quietly down the stairs. He opened the door to see a man in a uniform. "Special delivery for a...Mr. Duo Maxwell?" Duo sweatdropped, but signed the release form anyway. The man then motioned over his shoulder. A cute little black puppy came bounding up the steps, tripped over his big floppy paws, then knocked Duo over by jumping on him and licking his face. Duo landed with an ungraceful thud on the floor, laughing the whole time. The delivery man shook his head and walked off, saying, "By the way...don't forget to read the tag!" Duo shut the door and took the puppy in his arms, moving the black collar around until he found his tag. "Duo: Sorry I forgot your birthday. Here's a little Shinigami to keep you company while I'm off on a mission. Ai shiteru, Heero."
When Heero came down the stairs, he found Duo sitting in the middle of the floor playing with Shinigami. "Gami, stop chewing my braid, you silly mutt!" Heero smiled. "So, I guess my present wasn't too bad after all." Duo turned around, giving him a sly smile. "Which one? I love both of them...although I must say the best would be the first...and second...and third..." Right then, Quatre and Trowa opened up the door. "Hey Duo...Heero...cute puppy! What's his name?" Quatre said, kneeling next to Duo to scratch the puppy's head. "Shinigami, what else?" Duo said jokingly. Then Trowa said, "So...how did you sleep last night?" and both he and Quatre were puzzled when Heero and Duo looked at each other and burst out laughing.
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