Disclaimer: I don't own Gundam Wing or any of its characters. They are the property of Bandai, Sunrise and Sotsu Agency. (Sigh)
Title: When All The Laughter Dies In Sorrow 4/?
Author: KwyckSylver mailto:email@example.com
Warnings: AU and will eventually lead to lemons, angst, danger, betrayal and other good things. Heero is a bit OOC for now but give the poor guy a break.
Pairings: 1x2 eventually - well actually 1x2x1 - after all Heero's a late bloomer and needs some lessons.
Rating: This chapter is rated R for language but the fic is NC-17 overall.
Archived at: http://www.gwaddiction.com/
The Setup: The Allied Earth Nations and the United Lagrange Colonies have bitterly disputed for years over the rich resources found in the asteroid belt. Private corporations have been disrupting and sabotaging the mining operations of their competitors to the point that a cold war has broken out between the two governments. The Colonial Parliament fears the disputes will escalate to a declared war unless they can find a way to cripple Earth's space and military capabilities. Loyal Colonists have quietly infiltrated Earth as fifth columnists. They live the lives of normal citizens while trying to slow down Earth's industrial machine through sabotage and direct attacks. They could be your neighbors, your bosses, or your friends. The Oz Specials, the branch of the military in charge of Earth's security, has had no luck in tracking them down. Until now.
When All The Laughter Dies In Sorrow 4/?
Heero's cheeks were still flushed red. What possessed him to say tongue instead of fist?
Heero trotted down the hallway to the teachers lounge. Wufei usually ate his lunch there as did most of the other teachers. It was a welcome break from the students and was usually considered off limits to them.
Heero knocked on the door then opened it and peeked in, "is Coach Chang in there?" he asked.
"What is it, Heero? I'm eating lunch, why aren't you?" Wufei's voice came from somewhere inside the room.
"I need to talk to you please, it's important," Heero said flatly.
Wufei joined Heero in the hallway holding a half eaten sandwich. "What's wrong?" he asked.
"I wanted to tell you I just embarrassed the hell out of myself in the cafeteria. This mission had better be worth it," he hissed then walked away.
Wufei watched Heero go down the hall, fuming with each step he took. He forced open the exit door and walked outside. Wufei sighed and shook his head. He was wondering if he'd made a mistake in giving Heero this assignment. He was beginning to doubt whether Heero could handle it. How was he going to stay calm and observant if he couldn't keep his anger under control? Maybe it was still too soon after his parents deaths. Maybe . . .but given the situation, Heero was the one in the best position to find anything out.
"Duo, I thought you said you weren't going to tease him any more," Relena pointed out as they set their trays on their usual table and sat down to eat.
"I can't help myself, what can I say? He sets himself up and I can't resist," Duo replied, not an ounce of remorse in his voice.
"Not this time, you started that one," Relena responded, "what did you mean by that cold shower remark, anyway?"
"Let's just say Heero got a little overheated this morning and needed some cooling off," he laughed.
"You need to find a way to bury the hatchet and get along with him, or you know what's going to happen," she reminded him.
"I know, I know," he sighed, " To tell you the truth, I never thought it would go this far, or that Heero would be so touchy . . . but he is and it did. I'll think of something," he added confidently, "I don't know what, but I will."
"You'd better, before the two of you end up in a brawl," she added.
"Yes, mother," Duo said with amused sarcasm, then changed the subject, "are you going to the dance after the game?"
"Um-hum, since I'm a cheerleader I'm expected to. And that goes double for you in case no one's mentioned it," she said, "You know, this would be a good time to warn you that a lot of the girls here have a big crush on you and they're going to be asking you to dance . . . uh, you do dance, don't you?"
"I hold my own, I guess," Duo grinned, "but you'd better warn them to wear their steel toed shoes."
His smile drooped, "Ah, I guess that means Heero will be there too?"
"I'm afraid so," Relena answered, "he always goes but he never dances. Not even when we dated."
Duo almost choked on his bite of food, "you used to date him? And you're just mentioning it now?"
"I didn't want it to affect us becoming friends," Relena explained, "besides, we only dated a few times. We just didn't 'click'."
"Why doesn't that surprise me?" Duo chuckled, "umm, would you like to go with me to the dance, as friends?"
"What makes you think I don't already have a date?" she arched a brow as she smirked.
"Because it's only Monday." Duo smirked back.
Relena chuckled, "Ok, got me on that one. And yes I would love to go with you."
"Cool. I'll meet you outside the gym door after I change."
Heero sat under a shade tree in the park across from the high school, watching the squirrels and pigeons fight over the scraps of popcorn and nuts people had thrown to them.
He was upset with Wufei, he was mad at Duo Maxwell, but mostly he was angry with himself. How was he supposed to keep a cool head around someone who kept him on edge and confused?
It wasn't only because of the kiss. For some reason Duo had made him feel nervous from the beginning, and it seemed the other boy could sense it. But it was the way he acted on it that had Heero so confused. Was he doing it to piss him off, or was he . . .?
"Ok, let's change the subject and concentrate on the mission," he mumbled aloud. That line of thought made him uncomfortable.
"Wufei said Duo's father is a colonial agent and he appears to be missing. Duo suddenly arrives in this town with a brother he doesn't have . . . hmmm, I wonder," he thought, "what if this whole thing is simpler than it appears? If Duo likes . . ." he paused, " likes . . .guys, maybe his dad doesn't approve and he's just run away with his . . . lover? Apparently this guy isn't a known Oz agent, or Wufei would have said so."
"C'mon Yuy, think! Reason it out," Heero shook his head and sighed, "You know that just sounds stupid. If Duo were a runaway, he wouldn't be enrolling in school and leaving a trail for his father to find him. If his father is missing, either he's in hiding or he's been captured by Oz, so I must assume that Oz knows about us. That means the 'brother' must be Oz. But what is Duo's roll in this?"
His thoughts wandered back to that morning and he began replaying everything that had lead up to Duo's kiss. He heard the school bell ring and began running across the street, "Aw hell!" he exclaimed as he jogged towards the door, "Shit Yuy, you are ten times a baka," he cursed himself, taking two stair steps at a time as he rushed to beat the second bell, "Maxwell knows about the tattoos."
Heero ran down the hall and barely made it to his class when the tardy bell rang. He heard the whispers and the snicker as he took his seat, which earned his classmates a threatening glare from him.
The teacher walked into the room and began handing out the days paperwork as the last of the noise died down. Worrying about what to do about Duo Maxwell would have to wait till later. Heero Yuy had an English test to take first.
Zechs sat in his economics class listening to the professor drone on about bulls and bears, supply and demand and how fortunes were made off weak markets. He was bored to death. Who was the idiot that suggested he actually attend the classes he'd registered for? Oh yeah, he was that idiot.
He looked at his watch, twenty minutes to go. Sudden movement to his left caught his attention and he watched as the young woman sitting in the next row began removing her sweater. His eyes widened, underneath the tank top she wore was a tattoo. It was a heart over a field of stars.
She turned her head toward Zechs and smiled so he smiled back. The young woman quickly jotted a note and passed it to him.
"Would you like to go for coffee after the lecture? I'm about to fall asleep."
Zechs nodded. He couldn't believe how easy it had been finding someone with the tattoo. So why was Maxwell not having any luck? They knew there was an agent at the high school but Maxwell claimed he hadn't found him yet. This one had practically fallen in Zechs's lap. Was the boy lying to him, knowing what was the price of his failure?
Duo was practically laying across his desk in Music Appreciation, his head propped up by one elbow as he doodled on a sheet of paper. They were listening to Mozart's Violin Concerto in A, the Turkish Concerto. Or at least trying to, the teacher kept stopping the music.
"Now what emotions were Mozart trying to convey in that section?" the teacher asked the class.
"That music is supposed to be enjoyed and not analyzed to death," Duo mumbled.
"Mr. Maxwell, would you like to say that a little louder so the rest of the class can benefit from your insights?" the teacher glowered at him, none too pleased with his comments.
The bell rang and everyone began shuffling their books and papers into their backpacks. Duo picked up the sheet of paper he'd been marking on. Heero's name was written all over it. He quickly stuffed it into his pocket, hoping like hell no one had noticed what he'd been writing.
"I haven't dismissed you yet," the teacher announced, "I want an essay written about Mozart and what he was saying to us in the piece of music we heard today."
The other students threw Duo dirty looks as they left for their next class. They blamed him for the assignment.
"When will I learn to keep my mouth shut?" Duo groaned.
Zechs stood before the run down store front. "Tattoos" was stenciled on the large glass window. Things weren't as easy as they first appeared. He entered the shop and the bell jingled, letting the proprietor know he had a customer.
Tattoo designs covered the walls, ranging from the grotesque to the beautiful. One wall had a section marked off and labeled 'The Current Top Ten'. 'Space Heart' was second only to 'Mom'.
The woman in his class, 'Dorothy . . .but everyone calls me Dot', had told him the truth about where she had gotten hers.
"May I help you?"
Zechs turned towards the voice. Before him stood a young oriental woman. Her dyed blonde hair was short and tousled. Almond shaped eyes bore little makeup except black eyeliner and a dusting of gold shadow. She wore a teardrop stud on one side of her nose and a ring pierced one eyebrow. The name tag on her black t-shirt read 'Meiran'.
"Uh, yes. What can you tell me about that design?" he pointed towards the wall.
"One of our more popular ones right now," she responded, "but if you're looking to get a tattoo, I'd avoid that one, if I were you."
"Why's that?" he asked.
"So many kids have gotten that one it's uncool now, you know?" she replied, "with your good looks, I'd suggest something bold and original."
"Thanks, I'll keep that in mind. May I ask where you got the idea for the design?"
"I saw someone with a similar one, I think . . . yeah, I remember, one of the high school kids, a football player. But I did change it a little. His had something written in the heart."
"Thank you, you've been most gracious and kind," Zechs said and turned to leave.
"So what about a tattoo?" she asked.
"I'll think it over," he smiled, "and thanks again."
Meiran was hoping he would, that butt was begging for a tattoo.
"Get your mind out of the gutter, girl," she grinned as she watched 'that butt' walk out the door.
The dismissal bell rang, signaling the end of the school day. Duo walked to the small bank of pay phones located in the front foyer of the school. He dug change out of his pocket and fed the coin slot, then dialed Zechs's cell phone number.
"I'm checking in," he said, "I have football practice, then I have to go to the coach's house. I guess I'll be . . . home," he hated calling that place that, "around ten."
"Understood," Zechs answered, "don't be any later than that. I found out something interesting about that tattoo today," he continued, "I'll explain tonight."
Duo hung up the phone and walked out to the field house. He didn't even notice he'd dropped the paper he'd jammed in his pocket earlier. Heero had been watching him and picked it up after Duo left. He smoothed it out and read his name written over and over in Duo's small but neat handwriting.
He wadded the page up, about to toss it in the trash when he changed his mind. Instead he stuck it in his backpack and headed for practice.
Heero was pleased with himself. Practice had gone smoothly and he had managed to keep away from Duo as much as possible. He had even allowed him to slip through a couple of formations, just to keep his distance. But now practice was over and he'd waited all day for this time to arrive. He was going to get the truth out of the other boy, even if he had to beat it out of him.
Duo took his time taking off his jersey and padding. He needed to time himself to be in the shower at the same time as Heero, again. He had the feeling this was his last chance to really see the tattoo. If he'd been wasting all that time on Heero and he wasn't the one . . . but he had to be. Heero's lips had told him so.
He watched Heero out of the corner of his eye, he had just walked in and began pulling off his uniform. Duo finished undressing and entered the showers. The two teammates that were showering were almost finished.
"Shit," Duo thought, "they're gonna be done before Heero gets in. Maybe I should just ask him what the damned tattoo says and get it over with."
Duo unbraided his hair and began to wash it. It would be too late to do it once he got . . . home. He was working the lather through when Heero stepped in and began wetting himself. Heero jerked his head at the other two to leave. They gave him an odd look, but did what he said.
Heero pumped soap into his hand and began washing, giving the rest of the team time to clear out of the field house. Neither he nor Duo said a word. They bathed in silence, the tension between them was so tight you'd have to cut it with a knife.
Duo decided then and there to screw the tattoo and get the hell out but it was too late. Heero blocked him and pushed him against the shower wall, one hand around his throat.
"You're gonna tell me what the fuck is going on, Maxwell," Heero said as he squeezed tighter around Duo's neck, "who the hell are you working for, and why are you so damned interested in me and my tattoo?"
Duo struggled, trying to push Heero off him, but the other boy was too strong from the adrenaline high he was on.
"I don't know what you're talking about," Duo rasped as Heero began squeezing harder, "now let go of me!"
Heero pressed his body against Duo's, wedging him against the wall as he tightened his grip a little more, "Not until you tell me the truth. I know who you are Duo, I also know about your father," his eyes met Duo's, pleading with the other boy to confess before he got hurt.
But Duo wasn't giving in. He dropped his hands from Heero's arm that had him pinned by the throat and wrapped one around Heero's waist and the other around his neck, pulling them closer.
"Kiss me Heero," he whispered, "you know you want to."
He pulled Heero to him and pressed his lips hard on Heero's mouth. Heero felt something snap within him, like a rubber band breaking. He felt relaxed. He felt warm and safe. He released his grip around Duo's neck and embraced him instead then slid his tongue into Duo's mouth.
For the first time since his parents' deaths, Heero felt at peace.