1-5-2003

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Title: #11 Apology - Acknowledged?
Arc: Life With Heero
Author: Calic0cat <calic0cat@fastmail.fm>
Story Completed: Jan. 5, 2003
Genre: Angst, Domestic, Friendship
Pairing: None yet
Rated: PG-13
Warnings: AU, OOC, Swearing
Archives: At Mediaminer.org under Calic0cat. Anyone with archive permission for my other fics can help themselves; anyone else, please ask.
Disclaimer: Duo and Heero and the rest of the GW gang aren't mine. This story is. Nuff said.

Notes: The arc begins between one and two years after Endless Waltz. Heero POV in this story.

'Thinking'
"Speaking"
*** Time passing or scene change

Author's Notes: This is part of an arc of stories. I don't know for sure how many stories there will be or how often I'll be posting them. The length of each story in the arc will vary, anywhere from ficlet to multi-part. Warnings will vary from story to story as well, as will the genre. Pairings will probably eventually make their way in, but it will be quite a while since the first half dozen or so stories are drafted out and there's no real indication of pairings in them as of yet. Feedback is appreciated.

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Heero stiffened as he heard the phone ring. It was probably her again, making her daily "I want to apologize" call. He really didn't want to talk to her. He certainly wasn't ready to forgive and forget. In fact, he didn't know if he could even honestly accept her apology. After all her assurances that he would have a place with her for as long as he liked, he wasn't finding it very easy to forgive her for telling him that if he wasn't prepared to have a relationship with her then he no longer had a place there and she never wanted to see him again. That betrayal left him wondering just how many other things she had said that she would go back on just as easily in a fit of temper. Was all her talk of peace just an empty sham? He didn't know for sure, but her actions had certainly left him wondering. Was Relena's word worthless? And how many other supposed "friends" were just like her? Was friendship itself just an empty word?

Though he supposed that he probably shouldn't let himself wonder that so easily. His assumption of the worst in that small argument he and Duo had had yesterday could have led him to make a serious mistake. Not that Duo would have let him make it for long. He didn't doubt Duo's assertion that he would track him down and drag him back home again in the slightest. That entire statement had been growled in a tone very reminiscent of that used when Duo was in "Shinigami-mode". His best friend had been seriously pissed off at his misjudgement of the situation. Probably Duo's very genuine anger at finding him packing had done as much to convince him of Duo's sincerity as the words he had said. He had seriously misjudged Duo and might even have - no, there was no "might" about it, he knew he had - hurt him with that misjudgement.

And now here he was, too damn cowardly to face Relena, letting his best friend bear the burden of deflecting her persistent inquiries. Sighing, Heero dropped his head into his hands for a moment, then, raised it with a look of determination on his face. Okay, so he wasn't ready to accept Relena's apology. He could at least hear her out and basically let her know that he'd let her know when he was ready to talk to her again. Maybe then she'd leave Duo in peace at least most evenings. She would probably still call sometimes since she was supposed to be Duo's friend as well, but surely she wouldn't keep up this constant nagging.

As he stalked towards the living room, Heero paused at the vehement force of Duo's voice.

"Relena, you have no idea just how bloody damn bad you fucked up! The rest of Heero's friends are going to be dealing with your lovely little legacy of distrustfulness for god only knows how long, thank you very much! He and I had a little spat over the fuckin' laundry yesterday and I unthinkingly said that I hated it when he got like that, meaning so totally anal over something so unimportant, before I stormed off to cool down. A few minutes later, I realized how he might have taken it and came back at a run, just in time to find him half packed and convinced I hated him! Dammit Relena, I have to watch every fuckin' word I say around him! That is so totally unlike Heero! It hurts like hell to know that he doesn't even really trust me, his fuckin' best friend because of what you did!" Heero could hear the sound of heavy breathing as Duo apparently fought to regain his self-control. Voice ragged, Duo continued, "And then you have the nerve to ask me why I won't make him talk to you?! I can barely bring myself to talk to you right now! Please, please, don't call back for a while." Heero heard soft sobs for a moment before Duo hung up the phone. Moving as quietly as he could, he retreated towards the stairs. He definitely didn't want Duo to know he'd overheard that. He had some serious thinking to do.

Just as he was about to step onto the stair, the phone rang again.

"Oh fuck," Duo breathed raggedly, then answered the call only to be greeted by a stream of mixed English and Mandarin, so fast and jumbled that Heero couldn't make out more than an occasional word from where he was. "'Fei," Duo started, then gave up as the Chinese teen continued to rant. "Wufei," he tried again a moment later with no noticeable effect. Heero flinched as Duo finally roared, "Chang Wufei, shut the fuck up and listen to me!!" Dropping to a very soft, very deadly, very pissed off whisper, Duo continued, "You have absolutely no fuckin' idea what is going on here, Chang. I do not have the time or the energy to deal with Relena or with her damn righteously aggrieved defender right now. If you're so fuckin' concerned with her damn feelings, keep her the hell out of my way for a while. Now fuck off." A loud crash indicated that Duo had probably just either thrown something at the vidphone or thrown the vidphone itself.

Belatedly scrambling for the stairs, Heero managed to make it up them, turn around, and come back down a bit noisily, calling, "Duo? What was that noise? Are you alright?"

"Uh, yeah, just knocked the phone off the table," Duo called back in a slightly strained voice. "Just keep looking for those engine parts, would ya? I've tapped out my regular suppliers, it's startin' to look like we'll have to have them custom-made if you can't find'em online someplace."

"Okay," Heero responded, turning and climbing the stairs again. 'Dammit, I might have hurt him almost as bad as Relena hurt me. He's really upset.' Staring at his laptop screen, Heero came to a decision. He was going to have to make a bigger effort to meet Duo halfway. Whether it was something as simple as going grocery shopping together or as difficult as calling Relena and allowing her to offer her apology. Though he still only intended to acknowledge it. Not accept it.

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