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The year was AC197. Xmas Time. One year after final peace descended on the Earth.
Duo looked out the window of the spaceport while he waited for his shuttle. Things never work out how you expect them to, he thought. During the war, it seemed as if the Gundam pilots would be together forever, friends forever. Then when they parted after the final battle, it seemed they would keep in touch, see each other frequently. It didn't work out that way. Personally, he hadn't seen any of the other pilots at all in a year. He assumed it was the same for the other boys. Boys. Was that really a term that could be used for 17 year olds that had been through what they had? Yet he couldn't bring himself to call them men. That sounded so old.
Now, he was on his way to a reunion of sorts. There was to be a ceremony celebrating the first year of peace, then Quatre was throwing a party. Duo didn't really want to be there, but he couldn't refuse the sweet blond's pleas. He suspected Quatre was putting it on a bit, but Duo didn't have the energy to argue. Besides, a change of scenery would do him some good. Duo was bored.
It wasn't the temporary boredom that comes and goes, but a deeper boredom that had been building for some time. After the kind of life he had led, and the events of the last couple of years, Duo thought that going back to L2 and the salvage business would be just what he needed. It was nice for a while, not to wake up every day wondering if it would be his last. He truly enjoyed the salvage business, making something useful from what appeared to be trash. But after saving the world a few times, facing death daily, and experiencing the various highs and lows that came with it, apparently he had learned to crave more excitement than the typical day in the salvage business provided. He had begun to take unnecessary risks, driving too fast, cutting things too close. Just to feel that adrenaline rush again. Just to stave off the loneliness one more night, so he could fall asleep too tired to dream. To dream of a certain cobalt-eyed pilot whom he couldn't seem to forget.
Duo had tried everything to forget Heero Yuy. Since Heero had rejected him, the last night they'd all been together, Duo had run from his broken heart. He had run to L2, where he knew Hilde would be waiting for him. She was devoted to Duo, and he knew it. They had been just friends, but Duo was on the rebound and needed to feel loved. Looking back, Duo felt guilty for taking advantage of the girl. They worked together in the salvage yard, and it seemed natural to go places with her, just so he wouldn't be alone. He kept hoping he could just fall in love with her, just to replace the empty ache that Heero had put in his heart. But the cobalt-eyed boy was not so easily forgotten. Duo tried not to think about that last night, the party at which his dreams were shattered.
They were at one of Quatre's many estates, as was usual when they wanted to get away. It certainly was handy that one of the pilots had more money and estates than he knew what to do with. They all needed to get away from the attention they had gathered when the story of what they had done began to leak out. None of their training could have prepared them for media attention. They decided to escape before Heero incapacitated any more investigative reporters.
The pilots were gathered around the blazing fire, for warmth and because the flames seemed comforting. None of them could really believe the war was over. None of them wanted to accept the fact that their usefulness was quite possibly outlived. There were certainly the offers from The Preventers to consider, but not seriously, at least not yet. For now, they just needed to regroup.
All five pilots were in various stages of inebriation. Even Wufei was slightly buzzed. It was clear the Chinese pilot had had little experience with alcohol, as every sip of beer he took was accompanied by a grimace, and he had barely gotten through a bottle. Quatre, similarly, was only sipping at a glass of wine. The blond pilot's face was flushed, however, and his slight slurring indicated he wasn't on his first glass. Quatre kept falling over onto Trowa, who, after several drinks, had become even more quiet than usual. Heero was sipping at a glass of straight whiskey, and had gone through almost half a bottle. Predictably, almost no one could tell if Heero was drunk or not. To a casual observer, he seemed his usual taciturn self. But Duo, who knew Heero better than anyone else, though not as well as he might have wished, could see a difference in Heero. As for the braided pilot, alcohol seemed to amplify his naturally loud personality. Duo was the one dancing around, putting on loud music, mixing drinks, and generally trying to liven things up.
Duo hopped up and put another CD in the player. The beat of Eiffel 65's song "Blue" blasted out into the room. Quatre clapped his hands and said, "Oh I love this song! Please, Trowa, dance with me?" The green-eyed boy shook his head in refusal. Quatre pouted, but Trowa would not be moved. Quatre tried Wufei next, but the dark-haired pilot just looked frightened and shook his head. Duo looked over at Heero and entertained a brief thought of asking him if he wanted to dance, but Duo decided neither of them was drunk enough yet to take that risk. Duo was deliberately trying to get Heero drunk, and had plans for later that involved the cobalt-eyed boy.
"It's ok, Quatre, I'll dance with you!" Duo said cheerfully. They linked hands and made their way to a clear spot in the room, both pilots missing entirely the twin looks of disappointment directed their way from Trowa and Heero.
The two boys danced enthusiastically if a bit unsteadily, laughing gleefully. The song ended, and with a devious look Duo punched up another, one of his personal favorites. Of course, it was about sex. The opening strains of the Bloodhound Gang's "Bad Touch" assaulted their ears.
"I don't know this one," frowned Quatre, then he started to blush furiously when he heard the words.
"Sweat, baby, sweat, baby, sex is a Texas drought," sang Duo, oblivious to Quatre's blush. Duo thrust his hips sensuously in time to the driving beat. Wufei listened wide-eyed to the words, and when Duo sang, "You and me baby, ain't nothing but mammals, so lets do it like they do on the Discovery Channel," Wufei passed out onto the couch. Trowa's mouth hung open as Duo continued to grind around the room. Only Heero seemed unaffected by Duo's display.
As the song ended, Duo noted with disappointment that Heero still seemed unimpressed by his gyrations. Quatre had crawled into Trowa's lap and they were gazing into one another's eyes. Wufei seemed down for the count. Heero just threw back another shot of whiskey. Duo sighed. He may as well get plastered.
Several drinks later, Duo looked up to see that Quatre and Trowa were kissing passionately. In fact, the two pilots actually appeared to be climbing down each other's throats at the moment. Duo commented on this fact to Heero, only to be answered by the usual "Hn."
Duo was happy for Quatre and Trowa. At least somebody was getting some tonight, he thought miserably, and threw back another drink. His fabulous plan to get Heero drunk and seduce him was failing miserably. Duo was the drunk one, and Heero just sat there like a cobalt-eyed lump. A gorgeous lump, one with the most incredible spandex-clad ass... Duo tried to stop his train of thought, before he got so horny and desperate he jumped on Heero right here. Duo grinned at the thought. Heero would kill him, but not before Duo got the chance to press himself against Heero one time... Duo suddenly became disgusted with himself. When did he become so desperate he would throw himself at this unresponsive pilot? Heero didn't deserve him. Duo's drunken mood swings took him back around to despair. Heero would never want him... Duo decided to have another drink.
The only problem was, when Duo tried to get up to get another drink, the world spun around him so much that he lost his balance. He felt himself falling... and then his fall was halted by something... no, someone, Duo's mind corrected itself. Someone warm and solid and incredibly strong. Duo giggled as he realized the only way he could get into Heero's arms was to nearly kill himself. At this point, Duo was too far gone to stop giggling as he felt Heero carry him into his bedroom. Duo's hopes were dashed when Heero deposited him unceremoniously on the bed and started to walk away.
Duo called out in desperation, "Heero!"
Heero came back to the side of Duo's bed. "Go to sleep, Duo."
Duo grabbed Heero's hand and dragged him down with the last of his strength. Duo knew he was being pathetic but he couldn't help himself. Desperately, he pressed his lips against Heero's, hoping for a miracle. None came.
Heero broke the kiss and pushed Duo roughly away. Duo cried out, "I love you, Heero!"
Face contorted with what looked like anger, Heero backhanded Duo across the face, slamming him against the bed. Then Heero spun around and stalked out of the room.
Duo wiped at the small trickle of blood on his mouth and sobbed, "I love you," into his pillow, over and over until he finally passed out.
Heero was gone by morning and Duo hadn't seen him since.
Continued in part 2