And Never the Twain Shall Meet
Part X

Heero stood in the hall and wiped his perspiring palms on his denim covered hips. He looked at his sweaty hands with displeasure. I don't even break a sweat in the heat of battle... but this stuff is making me a nervous wreck. His conversation with Wufei hadn't been exactly what he expected.

First, there was the Kaylin situation. Heero didn't understand how Wufei could show so much interest in a man he had only just met. He would have to discuss it with Duo.

Second, there was Wufei's confession that he actually cared about Duo. All this time, Heero had been under the impression that the two young men could stand neither sight nor sound of one another. Duo is constantly tormenting Wufei with his endless teasing and mindless jabber... something that I have found I can't live without... No one was there to see realization light Heero's face as he leaned his back against the wall. ... of course! It's more than just me... Duo... he's a lifeline for every single one of us... I have been the only one not to see it - to reach for it... Heero shook his head. I have been such a fool. He pushed himself away from the wall and crossed his arms over his chest, making his way slowly back down the hall toward his room.

Third, there was his own unplanned confession to Wufei that he actually loved Duo. I can't believe I actually admitted it... not to Wufei... but to myself. Now all I have to do is admit it to the one person to which it matters the most. Wufei is right... I need to tell him. I don't know exactly why... but I'm afraid.

As he rounded the corner from the hallway into the doorway of his room, Heero stopped and stared.

Duo was standing with his back to the door, straightening the mess on his desk. He was wearing a set of headphones and listening to music loud enough that Heero could hear it from where he stood. Duo's head was swinging back and forth to the beat of the music enough that each earpiece would almost touch his shoulder with every sideways tilt of his head.

Heero leaned against the door frame, arms still crossed, and smiled at his lover's back. He could feel his own heart lift in his chest as he watched the bundle of energy and life that was Duo Maxwell.

Heero raised an eyebrow as Duo started really getting into the beat, his whole body beginning to get into the rhythm. It was another one of those things that he had seen Duo do a thousand times before... but now, it was different. Duo had his undivided attention. Duo turned to face Heero, seriously dancing now, eyes closed, oblivious to Heero's presence. Duo pivoted so he would alternately face toward then away from Heero. He looks so good like this... so... alive... He watched Duo dance for a good minute and a half.

With the next pivot, Duo froze. "Heero!"

Heero jumped, startled from his admiration.

Duo had the headphones hanging around his neck and his hands perched on his slender hips. "How long have you been standing there?!"

"Long enough to confirm once again that I could never keep up with you on the dance floor." Heero gave him a rueful little smile.

In return, Duo gave him a crooked, knowing grin. "So... did you enjoy the show?"

"Immensely." Heero answered as he stepped into the room, closing the door behind him.

All at once, Duo's look became serious. "So what's up with Wufei?" He asked as he tossed the headphones onto his desk and sat on the edge of his bed.

"It seems he was concerned about your well being, Duo." Heero explained as he removed his shoes.

"My what?!"

Heero moved across the room and pulled up Duo's chair to the corner of the bed. "Let's face it, Duo. Wufei has no clue about what happened this weekend. He was worried that I might be out to hurt you..." Heero sat in the chair and stretched his legs out across Duo's lap, "... which I am not."

Duo chuckled softly. "Well, that's good to know. Was he able to explain how he knew about us?" As Duo asked the question, he began massaging Heero's feet without even realizing what he was doing.

"Not really. He said that he, Quatre, and Trowa had more or less divined that we would end up together... as he put it 'Duo has a way with you'." Heero looked meaningfully at Duo.

Duo knew what the look meant... you do have a way with me... but Heero wouldn't say it aloud. "Ah... I guess they figured I would eventually work my way into that stone cold heart of yours."

Heero nodded. Oh, yes, you certainly did do that, Duo... you most certainly did. "It also seems he has... a 'thing'... for Kaylin."

Duo sputtered. "He told you that?! Did you see the way he was eying Kaylin at lunch today?! I couldn't believe it! I didn't even know Wufei had an eye for guys! I've never seen him look at anyone like that before! He looked about ready to crawl across that table... or under it!"

Heero let out an inaudible sigh as Duo's fingers worked into the arch of his foot.

Duo ranted on. "Anyway, when Kaylin and I came back here to get my notes, he asked if Wufei was available! Well, I told him I didn't even know if Wufei liked guys or not... but now that I know the answer to that question..." Duo stopped and looked at Heero, who was wearing a small smirk on his face.

"Duo, are you thinking what I think you're thinking?"

Duo took a breath to respond and giggled instead.

Heero quirked an eyebrow. "That answered that question."

"Oh! This is perfect! We have to get them together, Heero. If we don't, they'll just keep giving each other goo-goo eyes. I can't even imagine Wu trying to hit up on him... and..."

"Duo, stop! What is Kaylin going to do if and when we have to move on. He'll wake up one day and we'll all be gone."

Duo tried to imagine himself waking up one day and finding Heero gone... for good. A disagreeable pang of emptiness hit him. Just thinking about it made his heart hurt. "Oh." That was all Duo could say as he blinked the unpleasant thoughts away.

"Sorry to rain on your parade, Duo."

"S'ok... you're right... I just wish... I mean... Trowa's got Quatre... I've got you... Wufei..."

"Wufei's got himself."

Duo wrinkled his face and looked at Heero. "Yeah, and you had yourself 'til a couple of days ago. Did you forget what it's like that fast, Heero?"

Heero reached out and lightly brushed Duo's bangs out of his eyes. "No... of course not... but I was miserable. I know I'm not that good at reading other people, but Wufei just doesn't seem miserable to me. He seems content as a loner."

"'Seems' is the operative word there, Heero. Maybe I should go talk to him."

Heero started to protest, but, as he himself had recently learned, Duo's talks could be... compelling. Heero shrugged. "Maybe you should."


Wufei sat alone in the chair where he had been sitting moments ago talking to... a very... different... Heero. He still couldn't reconcile the change he had seen in Heero. It was just too much too fast. Duo must have found him... gotten inside that thick skull of his and dug him out. Yuy... Heero... he was so... unsalvageable... or so I thought... but, if anyone could do it... it would be Duo Maxwell. Duo Maxwell... Angel of Death... hah! Angel of Life... for Heero... for all of us.

A light rap on the door pulled Wufei from his thoughts. "Enter."

Wufei was quite surprised to find that it was the braided pilot who now stood in his doorway. "Duo?"

Duo closed the door and turned, giving Wufei an amiable smile. "Can we talk?"

Wufei snorted. "Well, I know... you... can..." Wufei let the insult trail off.

Duo sat on the edge of Wufei's bed and looked at the floor in front of him.

"Are you well, Duo?"

"Hmmm?" Duo blinked. "Me? Oh, I'm fine" Duo rested his elbow on his knee and his chin in the palm of his hand. "Are you?"

Wufei nodded, still not sure what to say since he had no idea why Duo was here.

"I suppose you're a little puzzled by Heero's behavior."

"That was suitably understated."

Duo sighed as he began to explain. "We had a fight... well... an argument Friday night. I think I said some things that made him realize that there is more to this life than this fucking war." Duo sat up and gestured as though he could just dismiss the whole war with a wave of his hand. As Duo continued to lay out the events of the weekend, he became more and more animated.

Wufei hung on every word.

"... and then there was last night..." Duo stopped, uncertain as to whether he should continue.

"Please, continue Duo."

"Last night... Heero... he... he came completely out of his shell. We drank and laughed all afternoon with Quatre and Trowa and Kaylin. He brushed my hair for... for... I don't even know how long! Wufei, he... he even danced with me for Christ's sake! And then..." Duo paused again, a vivid blush rising in his cheeks.


"And then we made love..." Duo finished softly, staring at the opposite wall as though he himself had just realized what had happened.

"You did WHAT?!?!?!" Wufei came out of his seat, knocking the chair over.

Duo was startled from his stare. "I swear, Wufei! I wasn't even expecting it! It just... happened!"

Wufei stared down at Duo - in shock and speechless.

Duo looked at Wufei's expression. "I know what you mean. I can't believe it either."

Wufei's chin was working but no words were coming out of his mouth.

Duo waved his hand in front of Wufei's eyes. "Hello... anybody in there?"

Wufei blinked. "I... I just... I don't know what to say! Or think! I find it unfathomable that he has come so far so fast! Duo!" Wufei put his hand on Duo's shoulder and gave the boy a worried look. "Are you certain that there is nothing amiss? No one has drugged him? He didn't fall and hit his head? He hasn't gone mad or suffering from some sort of psycho-trauma? Or... or... anything of the sort?"

Duo shook his head. "I think I can safely say - none of the above."

"He was drunk then..." Wufei was looking for any plausible explanation except the obvious one, "... you said he had been drinking all afternoon."

Duo sighed and stretched his long legs out in front of him. "I mentioned that to him this morning. He answered me by trying to fit my whole face in his mouth." Duo giggled at the conjured image.

Wufei was slack-jawed as he picked up his chair and leaned on the backrest. He tried desperately to think of other reasons for Heero's odd behavior. It suddenly hit home with him that the reason was sitting right there... smiling up at him. "Very well then." Wufei hesitated. "I suppose that... I will just have to... adjust... my perception... of Heero Yuy."

Duo snorted. "Join the club man! Why do you sound so surprised anyway? You predicted this was going to happen, didn't you?"

Wufei came around and slowly sat down in his chair. "Duo... I... I saw the effect that you have on him. You are the only one who has ever really been able to talk to him. You are the only one to whom he ever really listened... even though he acted as though he wasn't listening at all. But I could see through that... we all could... but I never, never, in all my life, would have guessed that he could change so much... even over an extended period of time... but in one weekend... that is even more difficult for me to comprehend."

"Mm. What's more... none of this would have happened if it hadn't been for Kaylin." Duo just threw another wrench into the gears inside Wufei's head.

Wufei sat for several long moments, rerunning everything that Duo had told him about the events of the weekend. "You're right. Kaylin... he is a friend of yours?"

Duo smiled. "He is now."

"He seems to be a good man."

"Actually that is what I came down here to talk about."


"Heero already told me you asked about him... he asked about you too."

"Really?!" Wufei's face lit up.

"Wufei... I can't think of a gentle way to say this, so I'm just going to say it. If you do get involved with him, you know it's going to fuck him up when we disappear again."

Wufei suddenly looked sullen. "I know... I have thought of that... but he is so... so..."

"Beautiful." Duo finished the sentence for him.

"Yes... and respectful... and kind... and... and he asked about me... ME, Duo!" Wufei patted his chest with his palms to emphasize his point.

"I know Wu... but this isn't just about you... it's about Kaylin too. I don't want to see him get hurt. As you said, he is a good man. He doesn't deserve to be hurt."

Wufei gave Duo a mildly sour expression. "Duo... you have changed almost as much as Heero has. I would never have expected such... wise... words to come from your mouth."

Duo was insulted and flattered at the same time. He knew Wufei meant it as the latter.

Wufei smiled now. "Duo, I have actually already been thinking about this. I do want to get to know Kaylin better. But, I promise you, I will let him know from the onset, that I will, without a doubt, be called away at any moment. There will be no good-byes... no warning. He will, very likely, never see me again. If he is agreeable with that..."

Duo held his breath as Wufei's features turned downright devilish.

"... then who am I to stop him from ravaging me."


Quatre lay on the bed on his belly with his chin perched in his palms, reading a chapter from his anthropology text. Knees bent, his feet slowly swayed back and forth.

Trowa looked up from the book he had had his nose buried in for the last thirty minutes as he heard Quatre turn another page. He knew Quatre was there... in the room with him, but it always gave him such peace of mind to confirm it visually... Actually, if I didn't have to study music history, I could just sit here and study you all day long... so beautiful... "I thought maybe I would make dinner tonight... just the two of us." Trowa raised an eyebrow suggestively.

Quatre looked up from his book, a bit surprised by the sound of Trowa's voice... and his suggestion. Trowa didn't cook very often... it just wasn't practical... but when he did, oh! could the young man ever cook! Quatre smiled. "I'd like that just fine."

Trowa smiled in return before resuming his reading.


"Hmmm?" Trowa continued to read.

"Do you think the war is over?"

Trowa looked up once again. Quatre could see pain and sadness in Trowa's eyes. "No, angel... I don't... not yet... but I wish."

Quatre knew perfectly how his lover felt. "I wish too."

There was a long silence before Quatre continued, his voice soft and melancholy. "It all seems so pointless now... the killing has stopped. Why can't it stay stopped? Because of a misunderstanding over territory? Because of someone's ego? Because one wants to say he stood a little higher than his fellow? Life is precious... life means so much more than all of that. Why don't they see, Trowa... why don't they see? Are they blind?"

Trowa smiled sagely. "I don't fault the blind man for not being able to see. I do fault the man who is not blind yet insists on walking around with his eyes closed. That's when people tend to get hurt."

"So many hurt already... I just want it to end!" Quatre's fist made a loud noise as it landed in the middle of his open book, breaking the binding in half.

Trowa jumped at the uncharacteristic outburst. "Here now, Quatre... don't get yourself all upset right now... I could be wrong about the war continuing."

Quatre rested his cheek on his crossed arms, calming himself. "I'm sorry... actually I'm being very selfish. I've just been so happy being with you the last couple of weeks... I don't want it to end."

Trowa crossed the room to where Quatre lay on the bed and sat down, pulling the blonde into his arms. Trowa just held him. "Neither do I, Quatre... neither do I."


As Duo stepped out of Wufei's room he thought he saw a familiar form dash from the hallway into the central area that functioned as the entire floor's lounge and kitchen area. Duo stopped and listened carefully, barely breathing. No other doors had opened or closed - no footsteps could be heard. Whoever he had seen was still out there. Duo smiled to himself... he knew exactly who it was. Duo moved quickly and stealthily down the hall to his left, past Quatre and Trowa's room. Within seconds he had circled the floor and was standing just around the corner at the opposite end of the hallway he had just been in. Just as he peeked around the corner, he saw a head-full of tousled blonde hair poke through the doorway, peering in the direction of Wufei's room. Duo almost laughed out loud at the sight. Why so bashful, I wonder. Duo watched as Kaylin more or less tiptoed down the hall toward Wufei's room. Duo moved quickly and quietly until he was less that two steps behind Kaylin. "Going somewhere, Kaylin?!"

Kaylin whirled around and went into a defensive crouch - he was ready to fight.

Duo raised an eyebrow. In-ter-es-ting...

Kaylin focused on the braided boy. "Shit! Duo! You scared the holy living crap out of me! Don't sneak up on people like that! I could have hurt you!" Kaylin stood and lowered his hands to his sides

Doubtful. Duo smiled his cheekiest smile. "Sorry, Kaylin... but you're the one sneakin' around the hallway. What's up?"

Kaylin could tell by the silly exaggerated grin on his face that Duo knew perfectly well what was up. The tense moment passed. Kaylin shook his head and started laughing. "Caught me again, huh Duo?"

"MmmHm." Duo's smile became more sincere now. "Why all the sneaking around, Kaylin? Just go knock on his door and let him know you're interested."

Kaylin gaped. "You're joking! I can't do that! What if he turns me down?!"

Now Duo gaped. "Turns you down?! Kaylin are you crazy?! Who in there right mind turn down someone as... as handsome as you?! Get a grip!"

Kaylin blushed a little at the compliment. "But... well... you said you didn't know if he even likes guys."

Duo suddenly realized Kaylin was missing that little piece of information. "Oh... " Duo snickered, "... he likes guys, Kaylin. He's probably waiting for you as we speak... maybe, at this very moment, plotting how he's going to seduce you." Duo's look became playfully sinister.

Kaylin's cheeks darkened considerably. "Duo, stop that!" The next thing Kaylin knew, Duo had him by the wrist dragging him down the hall toward Wufei's room. The strength in Duo's grip surprised him. When he recovered from that momentary distraction, he looked up to find himself standing in front of Wufei's door, Duo standing directly behind him.

Duo reached around Kaylin, knocked on the door... and ran like a bat out of hell.

"Duo! No!" Kaylin's voice was panicked. "Duo! I'm going to get you for this!" Kaylin growled, fists clenched at his sides.

As Duo flung the door to his own room open and ran inside, he could hear Wufei's voice. "Kaylin! What a pleasant surprise! Do come in."

Kaylin let out a sound of defeat and stepped into Wufei's room.

Wufei hesitated in the doorway.

Duo poked his head around the corner long enough to see Wufei give him a smile and a wink before disappearing. The door closed.

When Duo turned around, Heero was standing there with his arms crossed over his chest, a deep scowl etched into his features. "Duo, what did you just do?"

"What do you mean?" Duo was innocence embodied.

Heero moved his hands to his hips. "I know mischief when I see it, Duo... especially when it's your mischief. Now... what have you done?" Heero asked simply.

"I... umm... I talked to Wufei..." Duo looked at Heero hoping that would be enough of an explanation.

"... aaaaaand," Heero prodded.

"... and he said he would be honest with Kaylin..."

"... aaaaaand," Heero pushed for more... he knew there was more.

"... and I..." Duo had to admit defeat at that point, he couldn't resist those burning blue eyes anymore. "... and I more or less pushed Kaylin through Wufei's front door."

Heero shook his head. "I thought we agreed that that was not a good idea."

"Heero, it was going to happen anyway. I caught Kaylin sneaking around in the hallway just now, headed for Wufei's room."

Heero cocked an eyebrow at that. "Really."

Duo just nodded.

"So, what did you mean when you said that Wufei would be honest with him?" A concerned look flashed across Heero's features.

"He would tell Kaylin that he might not be around for very long..." Duo scratched his head, "... although I'm not quite sure how he plans on explaining it." Duo shrugged.

"Let's just hope he doesn't say too much then."

Duo knew the hidden meaning behind those words. He hoped it wouldn't come to that. There was a pause. "You're not... mad at me... are you?"

Heero shook his head. "No... I am worried though."

"Heero, may I point something out? Wufei saw someone he wanted... he made no big secret about wanting that person... and was planning on taking action on those desires... knowing full well the possible ramifications of doing so." Duo punctuated each of his next few words. "... he - has - done - this - before! An inexperienced person just wouldn't operate like that."

Heero's head flew up, his eyebrows disappearing underneath his spiky bangs. "You think there have been others?!"

"I would say almost certainly."

Heero was furious. "He's a damned idiot then! Doesn't he realize the danger he is putting innocent people in when he does something like this? Damn him! What if someone gets caught in middle?! Not to mention jeopardizing the integrity of the mission!"

Duo had moved to stand in front of Heero and was gently shaking him by the shoulders.

Heero stopped and fell into Duo's huge eyes.

Duo smiled. "Thought I lost you there for a minute... there is no mission Heero... not right now..."

Heero took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "Yes... but if he's done this before..."

"That's only speculation on my part, Heero." Duo reminded him.

Heero sat heavily on the edge of his bed. "I don't know what to think then."

"OK... look at it this way. If he has done this before, then he was damn good at keeping it a secret from all of us. I doubt that the people he was involved with would be any wiser. He does have a habit of disappearing for extended periods of time. He's probably off somewhere discretely taking care of business... so to speak. If he hasn't done this before then there is nothing to worry about."

Something Duo said caught his attention. Heero replayed Duo's last few sentences in his mind. ... then he was damn good at keeping it a secret from all of us... from all of us... Heero's eyes narrowed slightly. All of us! Heero jumped up from the bed and headed for the door.

Duo watched with confusion. "Where are you going?"

"To talk to Trowa and Quatre." Heero was already out the door and headed down the hallway.

"Heero?!" Duo stared at the open door. "Well... shit!" He said to himself. "Wait for me!"


The two boys looked up in surprise as the door to their room burst open.

Heero froze for a moment before turning his back and covering his eyes in embarrassment.

Duo peeked over Heero's shoulder to see Trowa sitting on the bed with his arms wrapped around Quatre, caught in an embrace. Duo giggled. "Don't be so squeamish, Heero. It's not like they're naked or anything."

"You could have knocked." Trowa said coolly.

"Sorry... I'm... sorry." Heero still had his hand over his eyes. "This is very important."

Quatre sighed as he sat up and threw his legs over the edge of the bed, sitting next to Trowa. "What's wrong, Heero?"

Heero removed his hand and glanced back over his shoulder. Seeing the two boys were no longer entangled in each other's arms, Heero began removing his shoes and socks. Not that Quatre cared about the silken rug... it was just customary. "I have some questions... about Wufei."

Duo was already properly attired, not having had time to even put his socks on before chasing Heero out of their room.

Quatre's expression transformed into one of concern. "What's wrong with Wufei?"

"Heero thinks he's a nympho." Duo answered a little too happily.

As Trowa and Quatre gaped at the other two pilots, Heero's anger rose again. "Duo! I don't care if he's screwed ever knothole from here to L4! That's not the issue here and you know it!"

"Geez! Chill out Heero. I was only joking!"

Heero made a sound - like air being let out of an almost flat tire. The momentary anger was gone, replaced by understanding. This is just how Duo is... get used to it, Heero. His voice and expression softened considerably. "Now is not a good time, Duo."

Duo nodded, wearing an apologetic smile.

Trowa cleared his throat. "So, what is the issue, Heero?"

Duo bounced on the bed next to Quatre as Heero pulled a chair up in front of the three pilots. Heero was trying to figure out a way of wording his first question. He didn't want it to sound like he was trying to find out if Wufei was a nympho. "Have either of you ever known Wufei to see anyone?"

"What to you mean... 'see anyone'?" Quatre asked suspiciously.

Heero shrugged. "Has he ever dated anyone... slept with anyone... how many different ways can you put it?"

Quatre and Trowa looked at one another and looked back at Heero. Both boys shook their heads in unison. No.

"Any ideas as to where he may be disappearing when he goes away for a day or two at a time?"

Again... both boys shook their heads.

Trowa finally had to ask. "Heero, what is this all about?"

Heero looked to Duo to explain.

Duo obliged. "I had a talk with Wufei. Let's just say, his attitude toward Kaylin is not something one would expect from someone who is... wet behind the ears."

All three gave Duo a confused look.

Duo clarified. "Wufei is hot for Kaylin. Problem is, his approach makes it seem like he's done this sort of thing before." Duo could almost see the lights go on over the other boys' heads.

"That could present a problem," Quatre said quietly.

"Exactly," Heero concurred.

Trowa was shaking his head. "That's not enough evidence. I understand that if he is having... affairs... he could be compromising our secrecy. But Quatre and I have been very close with Wufei for the last couple of years. I haven't seen a single shred of evidence that he has had any inappropriate contact at all with anyone outside our group."

"Exactly!" Duo crossed his arms smugly over his chest. "And, even if he were, if he is this good at keeping it a secret from us..."

Trowa finished the sentence for him. "... then surely he's smart enough to keep us a secret from them."

"Exactly!" Duo repeated.

Quatre stood up and looked beratingly from the boy on his right to the boy on his left. "That doesn't matter. If he has been sneaking around, not only is he putting the lives of innocents in grave danger, he is putting this operation at risk." Quatre became silent as he thought about what he was going to do about this situation. "None of you are to say a word to him about this. I will deal with this situation... if it even exists... personally."

The other three pilots knew not to argue with Quatre when he was in command mode... and he was definitely in command mode at this moment.

"As for the situation with Kaylin, you are all to encourage Wufei to take advantage of this... opportunity... for a little distraction."

Quatre looked into Heero's eyes, his own eyes messaging a hint of regret. "Heero, I would ask that you begin an immediate background check on one Kaylin Reinmann. I want family, friends, jobs, political sympathies, previous schools... in short... everything."

Duo's mouth hung open as he looked up at the blonde pilot. "Quatre, surely you don't think..."

Quatre cut Duo off, turning on his heel to face him. "No, Duo... I do not. But I am not going to take any chances with our lives... or his."

"Then why encourage Wufei?" Duo just wasn't catching on.

"I'm not certain of the exact wording, but it's an ancient saying, Duo..." Heero crossed his arms over his chest, "... keep your friends close... but keep your enemies even closer."


As Duo and Heero stepped into the hall, Kaylin's voice could be heard from around the corner.

"I'll see you Friday night then."

They could see Wufei standing in his doorway, smiling ear to ear. "Seven o'clock."

"Seven o'clock." Kaylin repeated and giggled. Then he was gone.

Duo and Heero looked at one another briefly before Duo attached his trademark smile. I really hate this... I hate it... I hate it... I hate it!

Wufei finally noticed his two friends coming down the hall.

"Sounds like Wufei's gonna get some!" Duo fell into his normal pattern like clockwork.

Heero started to glare at Duo, but Wufei was doing a fine job of it already. "Maxwell, can a person not say anything around you without we land in the gutter?!"

"Wufei's gonna get some - Wufei's gonna get some..." Duo continued to singsong as he and Heero rounded the corner and proceeded to their own room.

Wufei continued to glare at Duo's back until the braided boy and his companion disappeared into their own room and the door closed behind them.

Wufei's face broke into a wide, wicked grin. "Yes... Wufei is." He retreated to his room for a long, much needed nap.