Thanks to all the people who took the time to mail me their comments. I really, really appreciate it. Now here's the second part and you'll see what happens when you combine midterms, a pending faculty-strike, and a writer-blocked-fic-writer. Enjoy and please send comments before I bury my head into a tub full of stale coffee in an attempt to self-destruct.

Kimi

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DISCLAIMER: The characters here are owned by their respective owners. I'm only borrowing them for this fic. This is supposed to be two years after Endless Waltz, so all the Gwing boys will be eighteen years old in this fic. Hope you enjoy it!

WARNING: OOC and yaoi! Not to mention the fact that I only know of Heero's origins from other fics I've read so what I have is probably inconsistent. My apologies.

 

MISUNDERSTANDINGS AND RESOLUTIONS
By: Kimi, the Crimson Unicorn
(crimson_unicorn@mailcity.com)

PART 2: THE MATING DANCE

 

A tall figure stood alone on the deserted sidewalk, looking up at a small, two-story house with its white paint and dark-blue trim. The windows were open and the white gauze curtains were dancing with the wind. A light appeared dimly for a few minutes through one of the windows before being extinguished. All was silent.

The silent bystander pulled his gaze from the house and looked down at the piece of paper he held. Lips quirking in a smile, he gave the house one last look before walking away.

DAY 1:

"Oi, Duo, are you going home?"

The long-haired young man stopped and turned, seeing Hirde rushing towards him. He looked around but didn't see Devon anywhere. Hirde caught up with him, panting a little bit. The two set out again. "Where's loverboy, Hirde?"

Hirde pulled a face. "Mou! He says he had to do something so he cancelled our date for tonight. I was really looking forward to going to that new restaurant, Fantasy Gardens."

"Too bad. Well, I don't really plan on doing anything tonight so why don't the two of us rent a couple of movies and watch at my house?"

Hirde smiled. "Okay."

Duo smiled back.

"N-nani?!"

Duo and Hirde stood frozen at the doorway of Duo's house. The interior of the house was radically different.

Flowers of different kinds sprouted from every single nook and cranny. Five red roses in a crystal vase was placed on top of the large television set. A wreath of sweet-smelling angel's breath and brightly-hued irises, roses, tulips, and other flowers that Duo could not name were scattered strategically everywhere. They filled the house with scent and color. The most beautiful of all was the little necklace of lush tiny white flowers settled on the coffee table before the television, right where Duo would see it the moment he opened the front door.

"Sugoi!" Hirde cried, rushing forward and burying her face into the bouquet of roses. Sniffing appreciatively, she said to her stunned friend, "I didn't know you had a girlfriend, Duo. Why didn't you introduce her to us?"

Duo couldn't answer. His mouth was still hanging open.

"Duo!" A hand wagged across his eyes. The ex-pilot blinked. "N-nani?"

"Who's she?"

"Who's she what?"

"You know! The person who sent the flowers! Though it should be you sending the flowers, not the poor girl."

"What are you talking about, Hirde?"

"Baka! Who did the flowers come from?"

Duo reached out and took hold of the little necklace and slipped it on. He inhaled the heavenly fragrance and remembered.

{"Sugoi, Heero! I didn't know you knew a place like this!"

The dark-haired boy merely watched his companion frolic around the tropical island. They had been given orders to lay low for a while in a nearby colony and the colony that Heero dragged Duo to was filled with inhabited tropical islands. They had hidden their gundams underwater and went to mingle with the crowd. The natives were a friendly, simple folk, nutty brown under the sun. They often wore loose clothing and necklaces of tropical flowers.

Heero turned away from his lover to stare down at a tiny hand tugging at his tank top. A little girl with wide black eyes and curly black hair was clinging to him, one pudgy hand holding a clump of white flowers on a necklace.

"Buy!" she commanded in her small voice, black eyes demanding.

The Japanese boy frowned and rummaged through one of his packs. He came out with two coins and gave it solemnly to the girl. The little girl smiled, displaying two crooked front teeth, and handed him one of the flower-necklaces. "Sampaguita!" she told him solemnly before skipping away, clutching the coins in one fist.

Heero stared at the flower necklace before tucking it back into his bag. A moment later, he was dragged by an enthusiastic Duo towards the white-foaming surf for a dip in the pleasantly warm water.

The day passed by pleasantly in a haze of warm water, deliciously spicy food, and cheerful dancing.

That night, the two boys cuddled beneath a palm tree near the beach. The grassy ground was soft beneath their thick blanket and the stars were incredibly bright against the black sky.

Duo was lulled to a half-doze by the steady beating of Heero's heart underneath his ear and the muted roaring of the waves as they crashed onto the beach. It was a moment he wished could last forever.

"Duo."

"Hmmm?" He didn't move from his position, not even opening his eyes. Unfortunately, Heero pulled him to a sitting position.

"N-nani?" the long-haired boy demanded, grumpy at being moved.

He was surprised when Heero's hand emerged with a string of white flowers. The American watched his lover's serious expression as Heero placed the necklace around his neck, pulling his long hair out of the ring. Duo inhaled the flower's smell, so fitting with the quiet, romantic atmosphere.

"This is beautiful, Heero," Duo murmured, fingering the delicate blossoms.

"The girl who sold it to me said it was called 'Sampaguita'."

"Just when I thought I know you, Heero, you do something to utterly surprise me," the American said ruefully, nuzzling back into the other boy's embrace.

"Maybe you just don't know me as well as you think."

"Maybe."

"Duo?" A gentle hand lifted Duo's face so that violet met blue. "Hmmm?"

"Suki da."

Duo wanted to smile, laugh or cry. He did none of those things. He just leaned his forehead against Heero's and murmured in reply, "Suki da, Heero. Hontou."

Their mouths met in a gentle kiss. Moments later, they broke off and Duo assumed his previous position, cuddled against Heero's bare chest, smelling the familiar scent of gunpowder and cinnamon that emanated from the smooth skin.

The two of them spent that night underneath the stars, neither talking, neither thinking, merely content to enjoy the peace and beauty that surrounded them.}

"Heero. They came from Heero. I told him he had to court me for a full week."

There was a crash. Duo turned to see the crystal vase lying in shards around Hirde's feet, the roses strewn everywhere. Hirde had turned a deathly pale, her dark eyes anguished as they met Duo's calm ones.

"Yes, Hirde. He came back, last night in fact. And he told me everything."

The girl's legs folded underneath her and Duo moved swiftly to catch her before she injured herself on the broken glass. He sat her down onto the couch Heero had sat in the night before.

Hirde was crying, her shoulders shuddering. "I'm sorry---I'm sorry---I'm sorry---" she kept repeating, like a broken record.

"Shhhh. Shhh. It's all right," Duo comforted her, hugging her and rocking her in his arms.

"I-I didn't know y-you really felt that way towards him," she stuttered, face buried in her hands. "I thought that you'd turn to me once he left. B-but you didn't. God! If you could have seen yourself when he didn't turn up!" She cried all the harder.

"Hirde, really, it's all right," Duo replied. "It's past. There's nothing more we can do to change it."

"D-demo---"

"Iya. Hirde---" Duo pulled her hands from her face and turned her to face him, face puffy and red and tear-stained. "Do not do this. Not to me, not to Heero, not to yourself. We were children, then. We still are now. All that matters is now. Don't worry about the future. It was not only your fault. I was also to blame. I didn't chase after him or contact him when he didn't call me."

"But you shouldn't have to! I mean---"

"I shouldn't have to if he really did mean to leave me. But, you see, he didn't mean to leave me. It was all a big misunderstanding. I thought he went to Relena. He thought I went to you." He shook her shoulders gently. "So stop it, okay? You're still my friend, though I must admit I'm a bit pissed off at what you did. But what's done is done."

Hirde stared at him for the longest time before nodding slowly. Duo sighed in relief and slouched into the couch. "I'm a bit worried, Hirde," Duo said quietly.

"Why?" The dark-haired girl was slowly wiping her tears away with a kleenex from the box underneath the coffee table.

"It's been two years since we last saw each other. Two years. I've changed. He's changed. Is there still something left?"
"I don't know. Is this why you had him courting you?"

"Well, partly. And partly because I wanted to see whether he could. The war took out a lot in all of us. Us pilots, you, Relena, Treize, and Zechs----we were all heavily effected. For us teenagers, we lost our youth and family. We were all glad when the war was over. Except maybe Heero."

"Wh-what do you mean?"

"You don't understand, Heero, Hirde. None of us really did. The baka kept everything locked so deep inside him. But I wanted to understand him. I had to know him. I had to know who Heero Yuy really was. So I hacked into Relena's files. You wouldn't believe the dossiers that girl had on him. She had practically everything. Luckily for us all, she kept pretty tight rein on the files. I studied everything she had on Heero and Heero knew it. He knew I knew that he knew but he did nothing.

"Heero was bred for war. Ever since he was young, he had always been trained how to fight, how to kill. He began under a man named Odin Lowe, an assassin. Then Doctor J picked him to be a gundam pilot."

Hirde looked shocked and horrified. Duo continued on.

"Heero knows nothing but war and killing. He lived and breathed war. He wanted the war to end, yet he did not. What place did soldiers have in peace time, anyway? And that's the root of why I'm making him go through this thing.

Heero-"the-Perfect-Soldier"-Yuy had to change, had to adapt to a peaceful society. I am just wondering what he ended up becoming."

Hirde didn't say anything.

There was silence for a long while.

Then, "So do you still want to watch a movie?"

Duo shook his head. "Nah. Maybe next time."

"Okay!" Duo escorted his friend out the door, waving goodbye to her as she ran down the well-lit streets to her house two doors away. He closed the door and considered the little sampaguita necklace he had absent-mindedly put around his neck.

"Where are you, Heero?" he asked the empty room.

DAY 2:

"Oi, Devon! Do you wan' some?"

The other young man wandered towards where his friend and girlfriend were sitting. Both of them appeared to be munching on something. Devon looked curiously and saw that Duo was holding a heart-shaped box filled with expensive-looking chocolate truffles.

"Mmmpf. Good," Duo advertised, stuffing his mouth with a round piece that has wriggly green lines running on top. Hirde nodded enthusiastically as she snagged a rectangular piece with a candied pecan on top. Devon shrugged and grabbed a plain-looking square one. He popped it into his mouth. "Mmmmm. Rrrm arn matrr."

"Whrrt?"

"Rmmm arn matrr."

"Whrrt?"

Devon swallowed the chewy candy and glared at his friend. "Rum and butter," he enunciated carefully. Hirde was giggling beside them. "Where'd this come from, anyway?"

"Heero gave them to me," Duo replied, swallowing his own candy piece.

"Heero?"

"Yup, an old boyfriend of mine. He's in town."

Devon's eyebrows raised. "I didn't know you were gay, Duo." Both his friends frowned at him, Duo more than a bit threateningly.

"Do you have a problem with that, Devon?" his voice was icily-quiet.

"N-no, just surprised me, s'all."

The anger seeped from Duo's face, leaving it relaxed and cheerful again. "Well, I guess I am. But Heero's a special case."

"This is his second gift to you, isn't it, Duo?"

The American nodded. "Yup. Found two boxes of 'em in my front doorstop. I'm saving the other box for later."

"I wonder what comes next."

"With Heero, anything's possible."

DAY 3:

"Just a minute!"

Duo ran to his front door, still in his pajamas and yawning. He blinked in astonishment at his uninvited visitor. The mailman was carrying a box riddled with holes. He settled the box carefully into the front hallway and took out a clipboard. "Uh, who's this from?"

"Tall guy with blue eyes that looked like they could kill you. Didn't look like the type who'd be patient so my boss decided this one would get priority notice. Here, sign this and I'll be gone."

Duo snickered at the mailman's accurate description of Heero. He signed the clipboard with a flourish and closed the door, kneeling before the box. He could hear movement inside and slowly opened it.

An adorable chestnut cocker-spaniel puppy stared up at him with soulful brown eyes. Man and dog fell in love at first sight.
Duo gingerly picked up the puppy, noting that it was a girl. The dog gave a tiny 'yip' and licked at his hands.

Tears formed and ran down Duo's sculpted cheekbones as he hugged the dog to him. He remembered a time when he had told Heero how he had often wished for a dog but couldn't afford to take care of one. Heero had said nothing then and Duo had thought he hadn't been listening. Obviously, he was wrong.

"Heero, where are you, bakayarou?" he whispered to the pup. The pup wriggled in his hands and licked at his nose. The man laughed in delight.

"Wherever you are, Heero, thank you."

DAY 4:

"So what did Heero get you this time, Duo?" Hirde asked when Duo and Devon came at lunch hour. She served them their meals and awaited for Duo's answer.

Said boy appeared uninterested in his meal, poking at the ramen noodles like they were live snakes. "Nothing," he sighed.
"Well, cheer up, Duo! I'm pretty sure there's something waiting for you when you get home tonight."

"You mean, other than Domo-chan?"

"Is that what you named your dog?"

"Actually, I named her Kodomo because she's so hyper and cheerful she reminded me of me when I was a kid." He stared at his ramen intently.

"Baka! Eat that before it gets cold! And don't worry about Heero. I'm pretty sure he hasn't forgotten about you."

"But I haven't even seen him all week! I don't even know where he lives!"

"Have you tried asking?"

"Uh-uh-mmm-no?"

Hirde snorted in disbelief. "Well, it's only Thursday after all. A week hasn't even passed by yet. Just eat and stop worrying!"

 

Duo entered his house, his body alight with anticipation. There was a loud yip as Domo-chan ran from the kitchen to attack his pant leg with ferocity. Duo laughed and dislodged his pet, ruffling her chestnut curls. His eyes moved around. Nothing. No flowers, no candy, no big boxes with animals. There was nothing.

Heart heavy, Duo moved, disappointed, to his bedroom. He flipped on the lights and he gasped in disbelief.

That morning, his queen-sized bed was covered with several blue cotton bedsheets. Now they were covered with a smooth red satin. Even his pillows were covered with red satin. In addition, a huge bowl of fresh strawberries and a can of whipcream lay on top of the bed, right next to an unlabelled book and a pair of black silk ties.

Duo's ears turned a fire-engine red as he gingerly walked towards the bed. He had a sneaking suspicion on what the unlabelled book actually was and found that he was absolutely right. Somehow, Heero had managed to get a copy of the Kama Sutra, complete with colored pictures.

Duo could just imagine Hirde and Devon's reaction to this one. He popped a strawberry into his mouth and sighed in pleasure as the sweetly-tart fruit melted on his tongue.

"What will you come up with next, Heero?"

DAY 5:

"Hello! Can I speak to Duo Maxwell, please?"

Duo and Devon looked up from where they were dismantling a Cancer cockpit to see Morey towering above a young man in a mailman's uniform. "He's working," Morey's rumbling bass replied.

"Oh, I just have to deliver something to him."

Morey looked around and met Duo's eyes. "Maxwell, get your butt over here!"

"Yes, sir!" The young man hurried across the yard.

"Here you go, sir! Have a good day!" The mailman delivered a squarish box to Duo. The American scratched his head and stashed it into his locker. He grabbed it after his shift was over for the day and hurried with Devon over to where they were supposed to meet Hirde so they could go to the mall. Duo had planned on getting several things for Sunday when Heero and he had agreed to have dinner at Duo's place. A tingle of anticipation and desire rushed through his body.

"Hey, what's in there?" Devon asked. He and Hirde had gleefully watched as Duo wrestled with the gifts Heero had sent him. It had become a rather pleasant pastime.

Duo shrugged as they both sat on a bench. Hirde was nowhere in sight. His hands itched and finally, he gave in and opened the box.

Devon peered into the box and gave a shout of laughter. Duo's face was aflame as he quickly rewrapped the box again. "If you tell Hirde----" he began threateningly.

"Tell Hirde what?"

Both stared as Hirde appeared, dressed in a deep-blue shirt, gray vest, and blue jeans. She was standing before them, hands at her hips.

"Uh-ah-nothing," Duo said intelligently, hiding the box behind him.

Hirde, being another ex-pilot, noticed his actions immediately. "Oh! Is that Heero's gift to you today? Come on, let me see!"

"Ah-ah, oh, look! We're going to be late for the movie! Come on!" With that, he dragged his two friends to the movie theatre.
Duo didn't know how he did it, but he managed to stave off Hirde's unceasing curiosity about the box he carried so protectively in his arms. Devon, the blonde idiot, didn't do a thing, merely laughed at their antics, eyes dancing.

He let out a deep sigh as he leaned against his closed door. He stared down at the box and flushed again, desire spiking through him. He didn't know this Heero at all, it seemed. The Heero he knew would not have given him a box of colorful condoms and two jars of massage oil.

"Is this a hint, Heero?"

DAY 6:

Saturday morning caught Duo still abed, studying his copy of Kama Sutra diligently. The phone beside his bed rang. Duo grabbed it and said a cheerful hello while looking down at an interesting position. :Ummm, too bad we need three,: he thought to himself, grinning maniacally.

"Good morning, Duo."

The American's attention immediately focused entirely on the phone. "Heero?" Duo's voice was husky.

"Daijouba ka, Duo?"

"Hai, hai! Where've you been? I haven't seen you all week."

"Did you enjoy the gifts?"

"Yep! Though I'm pretty sure I'll enjoy yesterday's and the day before's even more one of these days." Duo's voice had became seductive and smooth, his violet eyes alit with fire.

"I'm pretty sure you will, too. Just called to tell you I'm leaving."

"N-nani!" Duo's heart plummeted. He could only stare at the wall in disbelief. "I-is it something I did, Heero?" he asked painfully, tears prickling at his eyes.
"Baka!" The admonition was oddly gentle. "Can't tell you right now but I have to go. 'Bye!"
Duo stared at the phone for a long time.

The day passed by in a melancholy fog for the young man. Even Hirde and Devon couldn't take his mind off Heero's words.
{"Can't tell you right now but I have to go."}
Those words kept creeping time and time again into his mind. :Where did Heero have to go? Why did he have to go?: Duo asked himself, shying away from the one question that struck him the most.
:Will he ever come back?:

"Duo, come on! We're going to The Mating Dance! Stop scowling 'cause you're coming with us!" With that, Hirde and Devon dragged their jean-clad, vocally-protesting friend over to the hottest club in the city.
The Mating Dance was a restaurant and night club. On the left side, it had the restaurant which had waiters and waitresses in cocktail outfits serving drinks and platters of delicious smelling food. On the right side was the dark room which had a whirling dance floor, several loud bands, whirling spotlights, and men and women in tight clothing.
Duo was very well-received by the crowd. Being the ebullient, friendly, and club-mad person that he was, he had been at The Mating Dance regularly for the past two years. He was immediately swept off to the dance floor by a tall, skinny redhead in red hot pants and a red bikini top. Hirde and Devon also were swept off by various folks.
Though he hadn't wanted to, Duo found himself enjoying the club. His friends were all nice and warm towards him, the drinks were awesome, and the music set his blood on fire. He set about to forget Heero and his untimely goodbye, gyrating with unequaled ferocity in the dance floor and downing drinks left and right at the bar. By the time the three of them left, all three were roaring drunk and staggering. It was a miracle that each one managed to get home that night.

DAY 7:

"Oooooh!" moaned Duo, head pounding. He opened bleary eyes to settle on a scowling face. He closed his eyes again, sure he was hallucinating. He opened them again. That scowling face was still there.
"Heero?"
"Baka! I left for one day and what do I find? You on your front doorstep! Do you know the dangers, the -----" the Japanese went on ranting.
Duo didn't hear a thing, delirious with the joy that Heero had come back for him. "You're back," he said, still staring hungrily at the other man.
"Of course, I'm back. Aren't you listening to me? You could have been killed, raped, kidnapped------"
"You're back!" Duo yelled, ignoring the resurgence of the little hammers in his head as he flung himself into Heero's arms.
"Idiot! Is this why you got drunk?" Heero expertly maneuvered the two of them so that he was sitting on the bed, Duo on his lap. The other man was purring like crazy, nuzzling his face into Heero's neck. Heero's hand came up and gently whacked Duo on the head.
"Itai! Whatcha do that for?" Duo growled, looking a bit ludicrous with his messy hair, bloodshot eyes, and flushed skin. Heero thought he looked adorable.
"You being such an idiot," retorted the Japanese. "You didn't honestly think I was going to leave you, did you?"
"Well, ah, I don't know."
"Baka." Heero's arms came up to gather Duo closer to him, inching backwards so that he was leaning against the headboard. "Ai shiteru, Duo."
Duo's head shot up, unaware of the shooting pain his action brought him. They stared at each other for a long moment. "Hontou, Heero?" Duo's voice was small, coated with his insecurities.
"Hontou." With that, Heero's hand went to his jeans pocket and took out a tiny box. Tears began to fall as Duo, shaken to the core, accepted the little box. Opening it, he saw the glint of gold. Then he started laughing.
On the bed of velvet was a small golden pendant displaying two figures struggling. One was a long-haired amethyst-eyed angel, the other a short-haired, sapphire-eyed devil. Their wings, bird and bat-like respectively, were spread out behind each figure.
"Kawaii!" Duo grinned. "I have to get a chain."
"I already have." Heero took out two delicate golden chains and broke the pendant in half. He placed the angel half onto one chain and the devil half onto another. He then gave the devil chain to Duo and kept the angel one for himself.
"Where on earth did you get this?" Duo marvelled, staring at the cute little scowling demon. :He looked just like Heero!: he thought gleefully.
"Hn. Had it especially made. I picked it up yesterday."
"Oh, so that's why you left."
Heero nodded.
"Thank you, Heero, thank you so very much. I adore the gifts you gave me!" Duo gave his *hopefully* lover-to-be a big hug, tears still streaming down his cheeks. Heero looked down at him gently, one hand wiping at the tears.
"Baka." The two of them kissed.
Their mouths parted as both gasped for breath. "Does this mean I should take the strawberries from the fridge?" Duo whispered against Heero's lips.

___

I know, I know, idiotic courtship routine but Heero and courtship methods was a bit hard to match up. Dunno know whether I should write a 3rd part to this. What do you think should be in there?