2-3-2003

Title: #30 Photos
Arc: Life With Heero
Author: Calic0cat
Genre: Shonen Ai/Yaoi, Domestic, Friendship
Pairing: None yet
Rated: PG-13
Warnings: AU, OOC, Swearing
Archives: Also at Mediaminer.org under Calic0cat.
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. Duo 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. The arc *will* eventually be Shonen ai/Yaoi - but there's only one faintly implied pairing prior to Fic #23. Feedback is appreciated.

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Duo looked at Heero in disbelief. "Tell me you're kidding."

"No, that's really how you do it. It really is very simple and the effect it creates is quite nice. The guestroom is small, so we should have no problem getting it repainted before Relena's visit," Heero answered.

Okay, Duo had to admit, the rag rolling effect *was* kind of cool. But it was going to take *forever* to do the entire fuckin' room that way! And that was just to apply the *first* contrasting colour. Heero wanted a total of *three* different shades! 'Whoever that sales guy was that introduced Heero to decorative painting techniques, I'm going to *kill* him,' Duo promised silently. No, on second thought, killing was too good for him. He wanted the guy to suffer just as much as *he* was going to suffer..

Duo stared at the oh-so-simple instruction sheet and sighed. This was *not* going to be a fun way to spend a weekend.

"Dammit, Heero, I thought we'd throw a fresh coat of paint on with the rollers and be done in time to finally finish converting the motorcycle engines," he protested.

Heero sighed in return and answered, "Oh, fine then. How about this instead?"

Looking at the picture Heero had just handed him and the instruction sheet that accompanied it, Duo felt slightly relieved. This idea was *better*, though it still looked like it would take most of the weekend to complete it. And it *still* did *not* look at all like something he would have expected Heero to come up with... 'Sponge painting and faux marbling? Good grief, don't tell me Heero's been reading those damn interior design magazines Hilde's been buying lately...' "Well, I guess this is a *little* better," he muttered resentfully. This was *not* how he had intended to spend his weekend.

"Gotcha," Heero whispered in Duo's ear before yanking the papers out of his hand and handing him a roller and can of plain old paint.

"Why you..." Duo sputtered, "argh... Dammit, Heero, what are you tryin' to do, worry me to death? I was startin' to wonder what the hell had gotten into you..."

"Just a little payback for certain photos that somehow made their way into Quatre's possession..." Heero answered with a half-hearted glare. "And that doesn't even *begin* to cover Wufei asking when I added babysitting to my job description when I called to agree to Relena staying here."

"Hey, that part's not *my* fault!" Duo exclaimed in protest. "I just gave'em to Q... "

"You *had* to know they'd end up in the possession of everyone we knew once you gave them to Quatre. He wouldn't be able to resist passing them on," Heero grumbled discontentedly.

"Err, well - yeah, I guess." Duo stole a sidelong glance at Heero. "You don't *really* mind, do you? I guess I really shoulda asked first. Sorry, Heero."

"I guess it's okay," Heero sighed. "I don't really mind that you took the pictures. And I don't mind us having them - or even *showing* them to the guys if they happened to be here. But it just seems too..." Heero hesitated, clearly searching for the right word to express himself.

Wincing, Duo offered, "Personal? Private?" 'Shit. Shoulda thought of that...'

Heero nodded, "Too personal to be shared with everyone. Things like that should be kept private."

Duo set aside his painting supplies and moved to lean against Heero's shoulder. "I'm sorry, Heero. You're right. Those photos of you with the kids *are* pretty personal and I shouldn't have passed them on to anyone without your permission. I guess I forget sometimes how important your privacy is to you. I'll try harder to keep that in mind in future." 'I've gotta remember that just because Heero's pretty open with me, that doesn't mean he is with everyone.'

"Good," Heero answered softly. "I know you wouldn't have done it if you'd realized it would genuinely bother me, Duo. That's why I'm not *really* upset about it. But I don't particularly like the idea that people who aren't close friends might see the pictures, either."

"I'll talk to the guys and ask them not to pass the photos on to anyone else," Duo promised. "Wufei and Tro probably wouldn't anyway, 'cause they're pretty private too. And Quat won't once he knows you don't want him to."

"Okay," Heero responded.

For a few moments, Duo remained where he was, leaning gently against Heero's shoulder. 'I did something that bothered him and he let me know about it even though just explaining *why* it bothered him made him a little bit uncomfortable. And he used a bit of a practical joke to ease his way into bringing the subject up. Kinda awkward, but still... Heero's definitely getting better at communicating. *And* he's developing a real sense of humour.'

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- tbc -