<glowers> Some days I just can't stand my muse. I'm supposed to be working on other things (not they're necessarily much more important, but...); however, the muse is not cooperating with me.

Brief Note: Not my characters, no money earned from this, don't sue. Yaoi, occasional language, OOC, AU sorta, and angst. You have been warned. Oh yeah, it's a little weird, too... The muse was in a perverse mood tonight.

If you have C&C, they're more than welcome, but no flames, please--Bob has a very sensitive personality.

Enjoy.

Monologue

I never meant to fall in love with you.

Hmmph. Of course, I don't think anyone ever *means* to fall in love with anyone, not really. Certainly nobody plans on doing what I did, which is fall in love with my best friend.

Falling in love is a weakness, a vulnerability. It leaves you standing wide open, makes it possible for anyone to just come along and clobber you. Especially if love is one-sided, like it is for me. And the ways for people to hit you with a whammy are just about infinite.

Believe me, I think I've gone through most of them.

I never meant to let myself form emotional attachments again. I'd been down that road a few times before, and sure as hell didn't want to go back. Too bad for me, I guess. Before I ever realized what I was doing, I was counting you and the other guys as buddies. Friends.

I should have stopped it there. It would have been bad enough at that point to have lost any of you in a fight with OZ, and I'm enough of a fatalist to believe that having my friendship is a real deterrent to long and prosperous life.

I'm such a baka. I didn't stop at friendship. No, I had to go and notice you--your body, your voice, the way you fight, the way you think, your obsessions. The way you cry out at night when you dream your dark dreams. The way your memories haunt you sometimes on a mission. Everything about you I noticed. I made studying you my hobby--provoking you so that I could learn about the way your mind works. I may know you better than anyone else alive--maybe even better than you know yourself.

Heh. Talk about obsession.

I dare *her* to explain the look that you're wearing right now satisfactorily. She couldn't, not with a lifetime of guessing. *I* can, though, but I can't even take comfort in that small superiority. How can I?

She's the one marrying you tomorrow, after all.

I wonder if you told her about me. Probably not, since she went ahead and invited me to the wedding and all. I have a feeling that if she *knew* I'd have been dead and buried six feet under long ago.

You won't tell her, either. You're a very private individual, after all. God knows how well I know that. It took me forever to pry you open just a little bit. I doubt she'll be able to do even that much.

Then again, if you love her enough to marry her, you might do it on your own. You're still enough of a conundrum even to me that I can't say for sure.

I wonder what she'd say if she learned that you and I were lovers there for a while during the war?

The image of the tantrum she'd throw is enough to make me chuckle softly to myself. That would be a show worth watching--from a safe distance, of course. I've never made the mistake of underestimating her. She's a lot stronger and smarter than most people want to give her credit for being. I didn't--doesn't it make sense to know the competition?

I'm sure she'd be able to rationalize it fairly quickly. It was a highly stressful environment, we were two hormone-driven teenaged boys willing to experiment with each other, we needed an outlet. Easily explained, ne? Especially since I've heard you say as much--although in fewer words--once or twice.

Ch. It hurts a lot, still. Probably always will.

I'm still not sure exactly when it all changed for me--when it became more than just the sex and the fascinating attempt to get inside your head. At least part of it was the things you'd let slip about those nightmares you have sometimes... the tidbits you'd tell me about your early life and your training.

It was more than that, though. You trust me. You let me see the real you, sometimes, and to the very best of my knowledge, I'm the only person who gets that. It's an honor that I cherish. The handful of times when you actually smiled at me--did you know that I almost cried the first time you did that? Me, the guy who never cries. Have you ever smiled for *her*? Really smiled, not a smirk?

I just hope that she understands how very lucky she is to be getting you.

Love crept up on me. One day you were just my partner and the guy I slept with sometimes, the next...

I remember the moment clearly. You were sitting there, working as usual, and I was sprawled on the bed, talking about a meaningless aspect of the nameless school we were staying at. Something I said caught your attention, and you glanced over your shoulder for a brief second. I guess I must have amused you somehow, because your eyes lit up--just for a moment--and you looked like an average teenager instead of a cold-hearted Gundam pilot. Then you looked away, and I blinked, and said to myself, "My God, I'm in love with him."

I'm such a baka sometimes.

I never meant to fall in love with you, but I did.

I tried to win your affections back, of course, once I figured out what had hit me. It obviously didn't work--why else would I be sitting here at your wedding rehearsal, wearing my normal grin and watching *her* snuggle. You aren't snuggling--you aren't the type, but she hasn't figured that out yet.

Nope, it didn't hit you like it hit me. For you, I was there as a friend and someone to fuck at night when the knowledge of what we had done during the day was too much to take alone.

Will she know how to help you when those nightmares grab you and turn you into a silent, shivering wreck? Will she ever be able to understand how the ghosts of the past cast shadows into everything that we do?

Forgive me if I have my doubts.

I was never really more than a friend, was I? I wish it were different... I wish I knew how *she* managed to get you. Was hounding you really the way to get through to your heart? Damn, I wish I had known that from the start. You wouldn't have ever had a moment's peace.

Well, the party's starting to break up. Tomorrow's the big day, ne? We've all got to get plenty of sleep--I have to turn away as she kisses your cheek. I may have self-control, but even I can't bear to watch that and resist the urge to grab you and declare "MINE!" to all and sundry.

*That* would go over well, wouldn't it? You'd probably deck me.

*She* leaves, going home to dream sweet dreams about tomorrow, the day when all of her endless work finally pays off. The others start drifting away as well. I ought to be going to...

You stop me, ask if I'll stick around for a little bit longer. I know the expression in your eyes--you're looking a little panicked, a little crowded. You're pleading with me to lend some support--no one else would see the desperation in your stance. No one but me.

I'm weak. I'm a stickler for pain. I grin and agree to stay with you.

You're quiet. That's nothing new, so I fill up the time with my own chatter. We leave the restaurant that *she* rented out for the evening and just walk along the street. I'm uncomfortable with this--it's too easy for me to pretend that you actually care about me...

It's either that, or being bitter that you're using me--again.

I can't help myself. I start teasing you about tomorrow. Are you looking forward to it? What are you going to do, once you're married to *her*? What will you do when the boredom gets to you? Will you name your first kid after me?

You tell me to shut up. You sound almost as if you're in pain.

I sober up a little bit, ask you if you're okay.

Of course, you just make a dismissive noise and say nothing more. Typical.

I'm also hopelessly desperate, so I go completely serious and ask you what's bothering you. A person shouldn't be so gloomy on the night before his wedding. I can't resist, and comment that a guy in love should be happy he's getting his girl.

Maybe something has slipped into my voice that doesn't need to be there--you look at me oddly.

You do love her, man, don't you?

..Why are you looking at me like that?

Jesus, you're marrying her tomorrow--what am I saying, of course you love her.

Am *I* all right? Of course I am, why do you ask?

I'm not lying!

..

It's nothing, really. I'm fine, I tell you!

..

Damn it, lay off me! There isn't anything bothering me!

..

Okay, fine, you wanna know what it is? This is what it is--I'm getting all psyched up to watch the man I'm in love with get married tomorrow! Like I said, there's nothing at all wrong with me!

My voice is hysterical, slightly, even I can tell. You look stunned. Damn, I must have done better than I thought, covering up my tracks.

I shouldn't have said anything. Gomen... You didn't need to hear that, not the night before your wedding. Forget about, okay?

You're looking at me funny... I shiver under the intensity of your eyes. I've always loved them, but couldn't tell you, of course.

Ne, it's time for you to be heading home. Gotta rest up and everything. So do I. Us best men have to get plenty of sleep.

What do you mean, there's not going to be a wedding tomorrow? Of course there is, *she's* been planning it since the moment she met you. Don't be ridic--

What?

You didn't just say that.

You aren't really looking at me like that. Not me. You're supposed to be looking at her like that!

Say something? What am I supposed to say?!

Oh, God... the feeling of your mouth on mine, crushing my lips... the heat of your tongue... Helpless, I slide my arms around your body, clinging to you for dear life and praying that I never wake up.

You--love me?

Your breath tickles my ear as you repeat yourself, saying words that I only dreamed about hearing.

You love me.

You love me!

I wrap my arms around you, kissing you for all I'm worth. And then I say the one thing I never thought I'd get to say.

"Aishiteru, Heero."

 

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~~Owari~~