10-22-2001

Title: Innocence Faded 8/16 (1x2 lemon prelude - revised)
Authors: Jenn & Kea (Dreamscape Studios)
Email: HeeroYuy1x2@aol.com and DuoMaxwell1x2@aol.com , respectively
Archive: Dreamscape Studios Ltd (www.dreamscapestudios.net) ; anyone else please email and permission will be gladly given
Feedback: Absolutely. ^_^
Rating: R throughout, pushing NC-17 in parts
Warnings: Angst, hurt, despair and heartache with spoonfuls of hope to make them go down smoother. Mild lemon and strong lime in some parts. This fic takes place following the events in Endless Waltz (movie version). This is a completed multipart fic.
Pairings:1x2/2x1, implied 3x4
Disclaimer: Gundam Wing is owned by a bunch of companies in Japan (Bandai,
Sunrise, Sotsu Agency), and their sandbox is only on unsanctioned loan for us to play in. ^_^ The song "Innocence Faded" belongs to John Petrucci and Dream Theater, lyrics used without permission.

Authors' notes: Innocence Faded is written completely in alternating first-person perspective. The three asterisks usually denote a shift in POV, with thoughts or emphasis indicated by single asterisks. In-monologue flashbacks will be denoted by slashes, complete ones or scene changes with the asterisks.

This is also known as the fic that ate our lives. Or was it our lives that ate the fic? I believe we started this in June of 2000, and when Jenn moved out here in November, we got kind of distracted for several months. I'm certain there are a lot of people who have long ago given up this fic for dead; I'll admit to being one of them. ^^; But some stories simply won't go away until they're fully told.

Huge thanks and worshipful adoration go out to Moe-chan, the best beta reader anyone could ask for, and the constant motivating force behind the rest of this fic. When I sent her a pathetically rough draft of the monster known as IF6 (that became IF 10-15 after chapter breaks), asking her to read it and let me know if it should be finished or scrapped, I never knew what a friend I'd be gaining. Without her help, this very well might have lingered unfinished and certainly would have had lots of inconsistencies and stupid errors.

Background music, title and constant source of inspiration: Innocence Faded, by Dream Theater...from the "Awake" CD.

*********************
Some will transcend spinning years
One as if time disappears
*********************

We stayed outside until the sun settled into a fiery glow across the waters, not speaking or communicating beyond a rare and surprisingly pleasant quiet. I may have to try shutting up more often if it means I get to be this close to him. Truthfully, I think in some ways we were both still too overwhelmed for words. Ironically, it was Heero, not me, who broke the silence. "We should go back inside," he said, softly, the breeze taking his words and teasing them around my ears. "She needs to know what we've decided."

He turned, the remaining sunlight washing his hair nearly golden-brown and throwing half his face into dark shadows, and almost shyly held his hand out to me. I took it, never realizing until our skin touched how cold I was. On the average, my body temperature is roughly two degrees lower than human normal, which makes for a Duo-sicle below ambient temperature of about eighty Fahrenheit. I shivered as his warm hand enfolded mine, and that concerned look leaped through the normal blankness again. "I'm fine, just a little too cool," I assured him, drawing my braid over my shoulder with a free hand and fidgeting with the end. I still wasn't entirely comfortable seeing that much concern from his eyes. I especially wasn't comfortable seeing his concern directed at me.

With a fluid motion that barely separated our hands, Heero shrugged out of his jacket and draped the warm leather around my shoulders. Softened by his body heat, it smelled of cowhide and soap and skin, clean smells that had my insides doing flips Trowa would envy. That led to thoughts of borrowing things from his wardrobe, just to constantly have the scent of his skin on me. I'm not sure if I grinned crazily or just drooled as he led me into the house.

The kitchen and living room were both empty, eerily still and quiet. "Becky?" I called out, not letting go of Heero's hand. "Becky? Are you here?" Some of the many papers from her portfolio were on the kitchen island, but no sign of our agent. I rifled through the sheets...a contract, a bunch of legalese, a note with our names on it, a property inspection report.

Waitaminute. I dropped his hand as I snatched up the note and scanned it quickly, rereading it a second and third time in a sort of disbelief. Heero quirked one brow in question and I started reading aloud, my voice echoing off the high ceilings.

'Heero and Duo,

The rest of the contracts will be delivered by courier sometime tomorrow. I took the liberty of checking you out of your hotel in Brussels and bringing your things on the plane; you'll find them upstairs. The house is fully stocked in keeping with Sanctuary's move-in policy. There are a few more amenities that will also arrive tomorrow. Keys are on the coffee table, and the alarm system codes are in this package. If you need anything else, my number has been programmed into the phone.

Be happy.

Becky'

An ironic laugh slid past my lips as the note dropped onto the counter. We had been outfoxed and all but stranded here. I drew the jacket tighter around my shoulders with a fierce shiver and treated my comrade to my most skeptical of looks. "Tell me, are all Winners genetically sneaky or have they been taking lessons from the Great Infiltrator?" I don't think it had quite occurred to me that this too-good-to-be-true house really and truly belonged to us. Then again, it had to compete with the realization that I was here alone with Heero, and any other thought was destined to fall to that one.

***

Becky Peterson was gone.

I snorted softly. Duo had a point, this was definitely reminiscent of Quatre. However... along with that went the knowledge that everything had been done with the intention to help, not hurt. I glanced towards Duo and my breath caught in my throat. Twilight cast him in silver, gleaming indigo in his eyes. I ached with sudden, inexplicable longing, one that went beyond the physical.

Duo and I were alone, with nothing to hold us back from what this house represented...from what it meant to be alone by choice, to leave the war behind. I turned towards him, reaching out a hand to brush it across his hair, trailing lower to caress his cheek. "This is our house," I said quietly, testing how the words felt on my tongue. "A place... just for us." There was relief in my voice...but also fear, and the same need that I kept finding myself helpless to deny. I wanted him in my arms...I wanted him in that bed at the top of the stairs.

I realized then, that I was allowing myself to buy into the promise he'd made. He wasn't going to leave me alone, not ever. God, I was beyond help. But I couldn't stop myself. He has that effect on me, I think he always has. When I'm with him, no matter how hard I fight against it, logic and rational thought escape me, and I'm left trying to muddle through a chaos of emotion. I needed him, I was finding a way to accept that now. We needed each other, which gave me a reason to fight, to hold on. I lowered my head, seeking his mouth with mine, and in that moment I had but one intent, neither gentle nor innocent...but we'd neither of us been those things for a very long time.

***

I'm man enough to admit when I've been had. Trowa and Quatre and Becky Winner Peterson had executed one of the most flawless examples of the bait and switch in recorded history, collectively abandoning me to the company of Heero Yuy in the secluded beach house of my dreams in a small, sleepy California town, with a lifetime full of languid, lustful thoughts taking aim at that piece of cherry-wood heaven one flight up.

I'd been had. And I had no idea how I would ever thank them enough.

I still felt slightly chilled as Heero stroked an impossibly warm hand across my face. My body shivered in the confines of his jacket with cold and something much deeper. I turned my cheek into his touch, like a flower seeking the kiss of the sun, and a slow smile curved my mouth as he rubbed his thumb over the tip of my snub nose, trying to fuse his heat into that extremity. His own smile wobbled on his face, a newborn colt on unsteady legs barely staying upright. I wrinkled my nose and nuzzled it against his thumb; the smile strengthened, just a bit.

"There's no place like home." The irreverent quip flew out of my mouth long before the synapses that formed it finished firing in my brain; despite the grin, though, it carried at least a little of the wonder swelling inside me like a living thing. I glanced down at my boots, absently noting that the left one was untied. "And we didn't have to go over the rainbow or use the ruby slippers to get here." And yet, this felt far, far more magical than that well-loved primer of childhood imagination. Not that I'd read it while in childhood, or even had a childhood to read it in, but one of the schools we infiltrated required a thematic analysis of the use of color in the book and movie. Guess which one of us got the A that time?

Meeting his eyes, I shivered again. They were hot, liquid pools of cobalt fire, their flames rising out to lick hungrily at my skin. Heero doesn't often think himself capable of feeling anything, but I know better. I'm the one who sees his eyes.

In his eyes, I saw a need, a desire, a passion that had everything and nothing to do with my body...need, desire and passion that my own eyes greedily answered. I kept shivering, violently, desperate to bathe, to drown in him. I wanted his warmth in the worst way, I wanted it inside me so badly I felt I would split apart and shatter into a million pieces without it. His eyes flashed, his head dropped, his mouth claimed me. His tongue met mine, stroking, dancing, running over the flat surfaces of my teeth. I trembled, my hands fisting in his shirt, his arms around me the only support against a long fall.

"Warm me up," I begged, not caring if it sounded pathetic and desperate. My voice shook almost as badly as the rest of me. The scents of him from the jacket surrounding me, combined with the actual scent of him, no more than a whisper away from my nose, spun my head in dizzy circles. I was falling into infinity, falling deeper and deeper into Heero Yuy. And I never wanted to crawl back out.

"Take me." Against his cheek, my pleading voice grew more urgent; the arms that responsively drew me closer against him transmitted that urgency in the press of our hips against one another. "Take me...upstairs." I kissed him back with the full force of the storm rising in me.

***

This was a language I could speak. Closing my eyes I let it form its own words, translated through touch. Ravenous, desperate touch, pouring over Duo's soft skin like a living thing with a mind all its own. I was a slave to its whims, banishing thought entirely.

"Can't you feel it?" I gasped, my hungry mouth descending to the slim column of his neck. I nipped him, hard, lingering to soothe the angry welt with the stroke of my tongue. "Heat..." Jerking my head up impatiently, I fed him a taste of the fire burning me up inside, rasping hot breath across his cheek as I restlessly pulled away again. I was drunk on the taste of him, obsessed with his scent. The hot, tight feeling inside of me was moving lower, and I realized that upstairs was exactly where I needed to be.

I scooped him up in my arms, moving with a single-minded focus. My body was a well-trained instrument, long used to obeying my commands, that was the only reason I was able to climb the stairs at all. I paused at the top, panting from exertion, but not from the climb. Willfully, willingly, I drowned in those simmering pools of molten amethyst, my lips worrying restlessly over his until I finally nuzzled against his cheek in an attempt to allow myself to speak.

Words wouldn't come. I buried my head in his neck, trying to process everything that was going on inside of me. It was impossible. It was overload, and I almost cried out in protest.

***

In an instant, I was weightless, buoyed by a boundless supply of strength and power. Shaking, I clung to his steadiness, the fire his touch stoked deep in me slowly beginning to smolder out through my frigid limbs. Every kiss burned, seared and branded part of him into me, stamping ownership on my heart and soul. He walked the path as confidently as going to battle, clutching me tightly, possessively against that hard, sinewy twist of muscle and skin that formed his chest. Heat emanated from every pore of his body, thick and sensual and male. Utterly, uncompromisingly male.

A small whimper formed in the back of my throat as I nestled my face next to that hot, throbbing pulse in his neck, feeling it flicker fiercely against my skin as he climbed. Upon reaching the zenith, he attacked my mouth with a blessed tenderness that finally spread the warmth in my groin through the rest of me.

He paused, hesitating and caught in emotion, halfway between bathroom and bed. I opened my eyes to small slits, like a cat, and gasped out direction. "Bed." Thoughts of languid lovemaking in the water made me quiver, but in that sweating, trembling moment what I desired more was baptism by fire. The pure, downy whiteness of the thick comforter seemed to swallow me when he laid me down on it, stretching that wiry body over mine in a motion that left me without breath or speech.

One of my legs snaked its way around his waist--the left, the untied boot having thudded to the floor already--and my bared foot cupped the weight of his backside against the arch, squeezing and pushing him closer to me. I shivered convulsively-- though no longer from cold--and echoed his groan. "Undress me," I sighed, my hands already tugging his shirt over his head, baring the full measure of his upper body to my hungry eyes and hands.

He was beautiful--a litany of small scars before me telling the tale of his life, and before I could think better of it, my tongue swiped down one of the newest ones, still pink and healing, the skin slightly puckered as it held together. It was recent, but still before Christmas and Mariemeia. What had happened to him in the year between the Colony War and now? I could see the ones on his body, but what other scars had the ensuing time left on his soul? Gently, I kissed that scar in silent acceptance.

His skin trembled beneath my touch as my eyes drifted back up to those impossibly dark blue depths, studying every hue and value and shade in them, feeling the infinitesimal puff of breeze from each blink of those long, long lashes. Still lost in those unshuttered soul-windows, one of my hands slid up the tight landscape of his stomach to his pectoral muscles and brushed lightly against one of his soft male nipples. It hardened, and I felt the air between us ignite, the flame in those eyes turning white-hot.

***

Touch has power, and in so many ways, Duo's power over me was absolute. My head whipped back as his hands made contact with my skin, fingertips making a slow spiral around one nipple. I arched my neck, nuzzling at that questing hand, darting forward to capture his index finger in my mouth. I suckled it, dropping my eyes to his face as I slid that lone digit in and out before moving to its sib. What is it about him that does this to me? Physical torture, mental interrogation, I'd been trained to withstand them both. It's why it was so critical to keep him at a distance during the war. If we'd been like this then... I pushed the thought away impatiently. I didn't want to think right now.

Pulling away, I pushed his shirt up, tugging it over his head and banishing it to the floor. Fair skin stretched over hard muscle lay beneath and I surveyed it like a general planning a siege. Choosing my angle of attack, I pursued it ruthlessly. I lowered my head and he arched his back beneath me as I left a trail of lovebites over his breastbone, soothing them with a swipe of my tongue.

His scent, the taste of his skin, was burning out my patience. I'd forced myself away from him for so long, and only now was I aware of the agony of that withdrawal. It's the ironic lie that pushers will tell about the drugs they deal, that once or twice won't make you dependent. I was addicted, had been from the first taste, and I wanted more. I tugged at his pants, directing his wandering hands to my jeans. "I need you," I breathed against his mouth, just before I sealed the words to silence between us. Is that what kisses are meant to do? Silence words so that they no longer get in the way?

I wanted nothing more than to make love to him in this bed, to fix in my memory what it felt like to make him mine all over again.

***

His tongue demanded entry against mine, and I welcomed him inside, only to spring my own attack as he crossed the threshold. The burning had begun, rendering my earlier cold a hazy, formless half-memory, as though the body that had trembled in off the rear deck was not the living inferno currently domiciling my soul.

Heero yanked my hands down from their exploration of his chest, setting my fingers on the waistband of his jeans in a barely-concealed demand. My own demand ached against the confines of a freshly-revealed pair of boxers; I realized then my pants and the remaining boot had already fallen against the invasion of the Yuy Brigade.

I tilted my hips slightly down and then abruptly arched them upwards in a long, slow stroke of cloth against cloth that mimicked the impending flesh against flesh. Fingers made clumsy by unforgiving desire at last fumbled Heero free from denim; God, I wanted to touch him so badly, to contrast by touch alone that intermingled rough and smooth lingering beneath his clothing.

"Baka," I gasped out, gulping down a giant measure of our shared breath. "I need you." I didn't want words from that wonderful mouth of his, but actions. More actions. More actions that would never be enough. Could never be enough.

I hooked the waist of his shorts with my thumbs and scooted them down over his hips, gliding them the rest of the way off with one foot and reveling in my own discovery that the perfect soldier hadn't been sunbathing naked. His backside blushed with a slight rose-tinged fairness, stark against the exposed tanned skin the rest of him sported.

Something firm and male nuzzled at my stomach. The sudden compulsion to write "Duo Maxwell" in magic marker on his most intimate flesh trainwrecked into my feverish brain; much like me, this part of him never lied. I glanced down, taking the full measure of him in with my eyes.

I almost lost it then. In the past two days, when a desperate bid for his life had utterly changed my own, I hadn't allowed myself to fully acknowledge how beautiful he was. Unclothed, prostrated atop me, he was like some wild, primal, gorgeous god. The type of beauty lyricists and poets forever hope to convey in their words, the type artists leap to immortalize.

He was beyond human.

He was a god.

But he wanted...me. Flawed, fragile, human me.

And God, how I wanted him.

"I need you...inside me. Can't...wait." The strangled urgency in my voice leaped back out at me from his eyes...God, he felt it, too. "Don't hold back."

***

TBC...