2-14-2003

Title: Trying to Escape
Authors: Heidi <beaglepack@earthlink.net> and comet <comet@ao.net>
Pairings: 1x2 / 2x1
Rating: PG-13 (language)
Notes: Thanks Kelly for the beta read.
Feedback: Any and all comments are welcome.
Warnings: None, other than this is not part of any of our series, but it is a companion piece to Stealing Away.

Disclaimer: All Gundam Wing characters, and the concept of the Gundam Wing universe belongs to Sunrise, Bandai, and others. We're just borrowing them. No money was made from this, and this was done totally for fun. Original characters belong to us.

Archiving: This story can also be found at http://home.earthlink.net/~beaglepack/vault in the Misc Stories section.


Trying to Escape
by Heidi and comet


From his position in the crowd, Duo could clearly see the suspect and yet remain unseen himself. He moved closer as if he were simply walking down the sidewalk. Unlike Wufei, Duo had left his Preventer's jacket in the car and was wearing civilian clothing. To hide his gun from the crowd, he'd tossed on the black leather Wufei had left in the car

The suspect didn't see Duo; for that matter, he never saw Wufei about half a block behind him. When a security guard yelled at a shoplifter, and the suspect spooked, looking around to see what all the yelling was about. He saw the security guard running right at him and not the real object of the pursuit.

"He's going to bolt," Duo said into his mic.

Wufei only grunted as he tried to shorten the distance between himself and the suspect. "Someone," he said calmly to the tactical team through his own mic, "get the damn shoplifter and security guard. Now."

"Too late, he's running," Duo announced, moving after their quarry. "Freaking drug dealer can move when he wants to," Duo said more to himself than anyone else. They'd been following the guy for more than two weeks, and it had finally looked like he was going to lead them somewhere--to the big boss, to the man shipping drugs between the earth and the colonies. "And what happens? Some shoplifter and cop wannabe ruins everything."

Running down the sidewalk after the man, who now unfortunately knew he was being followed, Duo wanted to knock the shoplifter into next week for being a stupid thief and causing their suspect to bolt. Duo dodged between two more people and shouted at a third to move. "UES Preventer, out of the way," he called again as the suspect knocked two more people to the ground.

Wufei met up with Duo on the corner and they both turned down the side street, this time with Wufei, who was in his Preventer uniform, yelling out for people to move. Surprisingly, or not, they didn't move for him either. They finally moved when the suspect, pulled a gun from his coat grabbed a random person hostage.

"Stay back!" he called to the two Preventers. "I'll kill him!"

"That wouldn't help you, Davis," Duo said, coming to a stop within ten feet of Davis and his hostage.

Davis kept inching back and when the door beside him opened, he fired his gun. The bullet hit the person who came out of the door. Davis pushed his second victim out of the way with his foot and went through the open door backwards, using his hostage as a shield. None of the Preventers would risk a shot without it being clear.

Wufei called in for an ambulance as several more agents finally caught up with him and Duo. "Secure the scene," he told them. "Someone stay with the victim until he's released from the hospital."

"Yes, sir."

As soon as the door had banged shut, Duo had approached it and used the barrel of his gun to open it just enough for him to get a clear look. "It's clear," he told Wufei, sensing his partner was behind.

Wufei nodded and moved low into the room. "Damn," Duo cursed, "where did he go?"

As if in answer to their question, they heard the sounds of a struggle above them, followed by another gunshot. "And this was suppose to be an easy, follow-the-target type case," Wufei grumbled. "Next time I pick the case."

"Yeah, yeah."

The two agents silently crept up the stairs and down the hall, sweeping the empty rooms as they went. They moved to the end of the hall and a large room filled with desks and boxes that overlooked the main street. The hostage lay on the floor off to the side, blood seeping from a wound his leg. Wufei alerted the agents downstairs but had them hold until his order before sending the paramedics up. "He has to be here," he said, lips moving with no sound. "There's no other way out of here."

Duo nodded and moved closer to the hostage. He was about to turn around when Davis rushed him, knocking Duo to the ground and sending his gun spiraling across the floor. Duo and Davis grappled with each other for a few seconds before Duo rolled to his feet.

Davis pulled out his gun and was about to shoot Duo when Davis changed his aim instead to shoot at Wufei.

"Wu!," Duo called out a warning before tackling Davis. Davis threw off the smaller man, but Duo wouldn't let go. So when Davis pushed Duo towards the full-length second floor window, Duo pulled him along, and they both crashed through the window to the ground below.

"Duo!" Wufei yelled, watching his friend fall through the window, with their suspect tumbling after him.

Through the broken window he could see Duo struggling to push Davis off of him. "Get him off, get him off!" Duo was yelling as he tried to push their now unconscious suspect off him so he could sit up. "This guy's heavy."

Wufei chuckled lightly to himself, happy to see that his friend was okay. He called for the paramedic and two agents to secure the upstairs scene as he went down to his partner.

Duo was still on the ground when Wufei made it down to him, but was at least sitting up. Duo had several scratches and gashes from the broken glass, as well as the fall and landing. The pained wince that came across Duo's face as he tried to move his leg, as well as the "fuck me" told Wufei that Duo was hurting.

"There were easier ways out of the building," Wufei said, squatting down next to Duo to better inspect the damage.

Duo would have laughed had Wufei not touched his right leg at that moment. Instead he let out a hiss. "Stop that," he told his friend, swatting Wufei's hand. "That hurts."

"Agent injured," Wufei spoke into his mic before Duo could stop him.

"Why'd you have to go and do that?"

"Can you walk?"

"No," Duo sighed, and flopped back down to the ground. "Fine."

***

The two people that had been injured by Davis would both be released from the hospital within several hours. Both had identified Davis and given statements to what had happened. Davis, for his part, was in custody and chained to his hospital bed until the doctor released him for transport to the prison hospital. Meanwhile, Duo was in a small medical examination room at Preventers' HQ.

"Get me out of here, please," Duo begged his partner.

"No."

"Come on, Wu," he said, trying bribery next. "I'll do all the paperwork."

"No." Wufei managed to say, and since he'd about had all he could handle for the day, he added, "Just sit here or I'll call Yuy."

Duo stuck out his tongue. "You're mean."

Wufei sighed. "You're injured, Duo, just let Sally do her thing and then I'll take you home."

Duo grumbled for a few more minutes. Much to his chagrin, he had to admit that his leg did hurt.

The door to his room opened and Sally Po walked in, Duo's chart and x-rays in her hands. "You'll be happy to know you didn't break anything and your back and ribs look fine," she said, taking a seat on a rolling stool next to Duo's bed. "However, your right foot is fractured. We'll wrap it for you and get you a walking cast, but you can't even use it for at least three days. I want you to relax and do nothing during that time."

"But," Duo started to say.

"No buts or ands or anything, Duo," Sally continued. "You're to stay off the foot for a week. I know you guys heal fast, but I'm not going to take any chances. That'll give your body a chance to fix itself. Your foot and leg are turning lovely shades of blue and purple that match the bruises on your chest and arm, and you have more scratches on you than a pin cushion."

"How many pins does a cushion have?" Duo asked with a small smile.

Sally let out a small bark of laughter but continued with her review. "I'm going to give you something to take to keep the swelling down." She halted his argument with her next statement. "Take the pills or you don't go back to work for three weeks instead of two."

"Fine." He relented. "Please, can I go home now, Sally?"

Sally took in the boy's appearance and nodded. "Give me fifteen minutes to get everything ready and then Wufei can take you home."

"Thanks," Duo said, sincerely.

"Next time, just use the stairs."

Duo glared at both Wufei and Sally before lying back on the hospital bed. He would have stuck out his tongue at them but he just didn't have the energy at the moment.

***

True to her word, Duo was released fifteen minutes later. He held a pair of crutches and the walking cast in his hands as Wufei pushed him in a wheelchair. "I don't see why I couldn't have just walked, crutched, out of here."

"For the same reason you told Heero that he couldn't the last time he was down here. Hospital rules."

"Yes, but this isn't a hospital. It's the Preventers' medical clinic."

"You want to try that one on Sally?" Wufei suggested. Duo shook his head. "I didn't think so. So just enjoy the ride."

Duo sat there and grumbled to himself. Heero was going to be ticked. Going out windows without some kind of safety net was Heero's thing, not his. He was also going to be worried and a stickler for Sally's rules. Rules, Duo was sure, she'd already emailed his lover just to make sure he followed them.

"I called Trowa," Wufei said as he got closer to his car.

"What? Why?" Duo stopped the wheelchair from moving so he could shift around enough to look up at his partner.

"So that Une wouldn't," Wufei answered. He also wanted it clear with Une that he or Heero could pick up the slack from having Duo out for a couple of weeks, and that there wasn't a need to call Trowa back to work. Besides, unless the higher ups in the Preventers wanted to be paying back months of vacation time after their lead agents had died they best let the hours be used.

"I see," Duo said, agreeing to the reasoning. He turned back around to let Wufei continue rolling him toward the exit.

"I saved calling Quatre for you," Wufei said. "And Heero will meet us back at your place."

"Gee thanks," Duo replied. The sarcasm wasn't lost on Wufei as he helped his friend into the car.

***

Heero had been waiting for them when Wufei pulled into the carport. Heero opened Duo's car door and before Duo could try and get out on his own, Heero had lifted the braided Preventer into his arms.

"Damnit," Duo complained. "I can walk, Heero, put me down."

"No."

"Wufei," Duo begged.

"Not a chance, Duo," Wufei said, pulling the cast and crutches from the backseat. He followed the other two into the three-bedroom condo and towards the Master bedroom. Wufei wisely left the crutches and cast in the living room to prevent Duo from attempting their use too early in his recovery.

Heero gently placed Duo on the bed. Duo's pants were either going to be a complete loss or a new pair of shorts. For now, Heero just propped the injured leg up on a couple of pillows and placed more behind Duo's back so that his lover could sit up.

"Sally said you should probably sleep," Heero said, "but I thought you'd rather watch TV for a while." Heero handed Duo the remote and the TV instantly clicked on. "Are you hungry?" he asked. Duo gave a small nod, already distracted by the TV.

"He's a little groggy," Wufei commented once they were both in the kitchen. "Sally gave him one of her 'special' pills she's so fond of using on us."

Heero nodded. None of them liked to be completely knocked out, but if they weren't forced just a little they'd never slow down. "Combination for the pain, swelling, and to help him sleep?"

"Yes. There was no concussion, but he hit his head quite nicely on the ground. It's a miracle he didn't break any of his ribs. Probably wouldn't have broken his leg had Davis not landed on him."

Heero finished making Duo's sandwich, sliced it in half and grabbed a can of whatever soda it was Duo was currently keeping in the refrigerator to drink. "I'll stay home with him tomorrow if you can cover the day after. I've got an assignment that can't be shifted but should be over with by nightfall."

"He'll probably still be out of it until then anyway."

"Let's hope so," Heero said, carrying Duo's sandwich back to their bedroom Wufei let himself out the front door.

Not more than an hour after Duo finished was he asleep. Heero sighed as he stripped his lover out of his ruined clothes, leaving him in a loose pair of boxers and one of his favorite lightweight sweatshirts. He then placed a soft blanket over Duo's legs and waist.

Heero settled down on the bed next to Duo and simply watched his lover sleep; everything else could wait until Duo woke.

=====

Which he didn't do until early the next morning, but he wasn't up very long. Just long enough for Heero to carry him to the bathroom, leave him there to relieve himself and wash his face while Heero retrieved the pills that Sally had prescribed. "I don't want them, Heero."

"If you take the next four dosages," Heero told Duo after getting him settled back on the bed, "I'll forget about the rest of them." What Heero didn't tell him was this was the same bargain that Sally had written in her e-mail.

"Only four?" Duo questioned. It was early and he wanted to make sure he was clear. When Heero nodded, he agreed.

"Good," Heero said, handing Duo the pills and a glass of apple juice. "You can eat breakfast and then rest."

=====

The next day went about the same for Wufei. With Duo taking Sally's little pills in the morning and evening, he spent most of the day and night in a blissful fog. The third day was different.

"Nope, not taking them. You said four," Duo said stubbornly, crossing his arms over his chest. "That would be dose five, nice try. Not taking them."

"Fine," Heero acquiesced. "But if the swelling returns or the pain increases, you're taking a dose tonight."

"If, sure," Duo answered. "Maybe."

Heero rolled his eyes and decided at switch of topic was in order. "You should call Quatre."

"Can't. He's busy with a closed meeting," Duo said hurriedly.

"They'll break into the meeting for you."

Duo growled. "I'm fine. I'll tell him later. He'll only worry and he doesn't need that right now."

"E-mail him then."

"Yuy."

"He's going to be pissed you didn't tell him," Heero pointed out.

"I know," Duo sighed and leaned back against the pillow. "I just don't want to worry him any more then necessary. You know how he is...besides, I'm fine."

Heero nodded. He knew Quatre would cancel everything, and right now their friend was in the middle of a sticky business dealing. "Alright," Heero said, moving to sit next to Duo on the bed. "Let's watch this movie you had me get."

Duo brightened. "Popcorn. We need popcorn first."

Heero reached down to the floor and picked up a large bowl of popcorn and two sodas.

"Cool," Duo said, taking one of the sodas.

=====

Two days later, Duo was bored and alone. There was no one at home since Heero was at work with Wufei. He'd watched the stack of movies Heero had set up for him. He'd even read though half of the stack of books next to the bed that he'd been supplied with. He was still bored.

He knew from eavesdropping on Heero and Wufei the other morning when they thought he was asleep that the walking cast and crutches were in the closet. Looking around the room, he devised a plan on how to brighten up his day considerably.

Wishing he were as flexible as Trowa, Duo maneuvered to the edge of the bed, careful not to jar his foot or the myriad of bruises crisscrossing his chest more than necessary. Wufei had left a chair beside the bed when he was over earlier in the morning asking a few questions about an old case that was finally going to court that week. Duo grabbed the chair and across the room and down the hall to the closet, moving the chair with him for support.

Sitting down, Duo pulled the door open and proceeded to put on the cast, gritting his teeth the whole time.

Freedom, Duo thought as he used the crutches and headed out the door. Using the crutches and the railing for support, Duo hopped down the steps to the sidewalk and made his way down the block to the coffee shop he frequented.

"Hey Duo," Jake said as Duo hopped in the door. "Have a seat. I'll bring your usual over for you."

Duo took a seat and propped his foot up on the empty chair across the small table from him. This was *so* much better than being alone in the house. At least now he had people to talk to.

Sitting contently, Duo sipped his Irish cream latte. He skimmed the newspapers Jake had dumped on the table when he'd brought the latte and orange scone, while chatting with the other customers who decided to sit in the cafe and drink their coffee.

---

Wufei had volunteered to go to the house and check on Duo while Heero attended a meeting. He had no idea there was something amiss when he walked in the door. Everything was how he and Heero had left it that morning. He could hear the faint sounds of an afternoon talk show coming from the TV in the bedroom. He'd have to tease Duo about his choice of programming.

"Damn him!" Wufei cursed the minute he saw the chair in the middle of the hallway and the closet door wide open. Duo had escaped. And earlier than either Wufei or Heero thought he would. Flipping open his cell phone he punched in Heero's number.

"Yuy."

"He's gone," Wufei said when Heero answered, not bothering with pleasantries.

"Damn. Try the coffee shop."

Closing the phone, Wufei turned and headed out the door, muttering under his breath the entire walk to the coffee shop.

"I should call Quatre," was the first thing Wufei said when he walked into the coffee shop.

Duo froze, then grinned. "Hey Wu," he said turning around to face his friend, giving Wufei his best puppy-eyed expression. "Would you really go and do a thing like that?"

Wufei growled and dropped into the chair next to Duo. "Cut out the look and I won't." The threat had been worth a try. "He will find out though, you know?"

"Yeah, but not for a while."

=====

The report on the incident Duo was working on wasn't coming out the way he wanted it. Wadding up yet another sheet of paper, he pitched it at Heero, who was lounging at the foot of the bed reading a crime scene report.

"Duo...," Heero complained when the paper ball bounced off the back of his head.

"I'm bored."

"Well occupy yourself doing something besides using me for target practice," Heero declared taking the latest paper missile and pitching it back at his lover.

Duo ignored the ball of paper that bounced off his chest. "Oh, I can think of lots of things I could be doing...with you..." Duo answered, not bothering to hide the suggestive tone of his voice.

"I'm sure you can," Heero replied flatly. "Just as I can find better things to do than babysit you." He hoped if he pretended to be mad at his lover, Duo would quit trying to escape every time he and Wufei turned their backs.

The trip down the block to the coffee shop had been bad enough but it wasn't nearly as dangerous as Duo's next escape attempt--when he tried to climb out the window. Wufei had come to ask him what he wanted for lunch, only to find Duo sitting on the window ledge with one leg still inside and one leg hanging out the window, his crutches propped up against the side of the house.

Duo hadn't tried anything the next day, but now the braided man was trying another tactic, and Heero knew that if he didn't do something soon, Duo would either try again or Heero would give into his lover's suggestions. Heero came to a decision. "How about we go to that coffee place of yours and work on these?" he indicated the reports.

Duo's mouth dropped open and all he could do was nod. Heero had surprised him, and while a little foreplay would have been nice, he didn't think Heero would do anthing until Duo could move without completely wincing. He'd take the coffee shop, anything was better than being stuck inside.

Heero helped Duo into the car. The short drive to the coffee shop was made in silence. Once settled at a back table with their coffee and Duo's leg once again propped into a third chair, Duo finally spoke. "Thanks."

"Hn, just behave," Heero smirked and went back to work on his own report.

Duo was relaxed for the next few days.

=====

Quatre and Trowa entered the condo through the open sliding glass door to loud bickering between the Duo and Heero. They followed the voices through the living room and down the hall to the Master bedroom.

"...I swear."

"All the damn day."

"Funny, Yuy, real funny. But I swear if you two don't let me out of here I'll, I'll..."

"What will do?" Quatre asked Duo from the bedroom door.

Heero turned at the new voice and his entire body seemed to relax just a little. "Oh, thank whatever deity heard my pleas."

"You're welcome," Trowa said, smirking as he moved to stand next to Wufei, who had been looking out the window, attempting to stay out of Duo and Heero's bickering.

Quatre approached Duo, who was reclined on the bed, with one foot propped up on pillows and several more pillows behind his back. "I'm mad at you for not telling me."

Even though he had known how Quatre would react, Duo had the good graces to look just a little ashamed, but still repeated just what Trowa had told Quatre the day before. "I didn't want to bother you."

"I see," Quatre said, holding a small round container. "So then maybe I should just eat this myself." He waved the carton of Grandmother's Cookie Jar ice cream in front of Duo's eyes.

Duo might not have been able to walk without assistance, but his arms and the rest of his reflexes worked just fine for now. He held the ice cream and was looking for a spoon. "Someone want to be helpful and get me a spoon?"

Quatre smiled and climbed up on the bed to sit next to Duo. As soon as he got comfortable he produced two spoons that he'd been hiding. "You three can go do whatever it is you do in your free time," Quatre said to Heero and Wufei. "We have to leave before five to get dinner and get back to the circus."

"Yes!" Duo looked happy that he'd finally get out of the house again. And for more than two hours.

A "we shouldn't go" got Heero a dirty look from Duo that only brightened when Heero capitulated. Duo had been miserable, and a miserable Duo made for an unhappy Heero. If he gave into this, Heero knew that Duo would be content for a few more days. "Alright, we'll go, but you have stay up here until then and relax, agreed?" Duo nodded.

Wufei snorted and shook his head. "He has you wrapped around his finger," he stated, having already figured that they would all be going to the circus tonight.

"Hn," Heero grunted, but didn't deny it.

Heero followed Wufei and Trowa to the kitchen, leaving Quatre and Duo alone to eat their ice cream. Quatre's smile was a little larger than normal. "What's up Quat?" Duo asked. "Besides my foot, that is?

"He's staying," Quatre answered. "But I'll tell you all about it if you promise to tell me how you got yourself into being thrown out a window."

Duo took a bite of the ice cream. "Deal."

"It started with me running away to the circus..."

- end -