<sniff> I'm sorry, minna - I really am. They took me off my meds a little over a week ago, and THIS is the result. Maybe if I bring it with me to my next shrinking session and beg, they'll put me back on?

Serious angst warning. Don't read this if you're depressed.

Disclaimer: I own nothing. Suing me will therefor get you very little.

The War Is Over

It's over.
The war is over.
I keep repeating the words to myself, hoping that they'll take on some meaning. But they continue to echo in my mind, empty and devoid of substance.
The war is over. You don't have to fight any more.
There - that got a reaction. No more fighting? What am I going to do now?
The war is over. You don't have to fight any more. Dr. J has no control over you.
Now I'm shuddering. That thought both terrifies me, and sets off a spinning, joyful feeling inside me. No more control? I'm free to do what I want? Impossible. But true.
The war is over. No one else will die.
My eyes are staring blankly at the wall, I know, but all I can see is my nightmares. How many times have I watched the other pilots die - by OZ's hand, by my hand? How many times have I pushed them away, refusing to form attachments, because I know the day might come when I'd be given the order to kill them?
The war is over. There are no more orders.
No more orders? No more instructions? I am free?
The war is over. You are free.
Free. to what? What am I, outside of this war which is everything to me? Who is Heero Yuy, underneath the Perfect Soldier?
The war is over. You can tell him.
.
Tell him.
.
Tell him. you love him.
.
Duo.
How long has it been, since that first night, when you drove my nightmares away with your touch? Nearly a year, since that fateful assignment to the boarding school. Nearly a year, since you touched me, and I touched you back.
How long has it been, since I started to love you?
Forever. Before I was born. I think I was made to be in your arms.
How long has it been, since I knew it?
I'm not sure. Months. Maybe even from the start. But I didn't tell you. I couldn't. I couldn't even admit it to myself - because of that day, the one that I dreaded, when I might have to kill you. Hell, that day almost came, several times - but I couldn't bring myself to do it.
But now. now, Dr. J held no sway over me. So what if he found out that I loved you? He could no longer hurt you, or use you against me. I will never be ordered to kill you.
The war is over. I love you.
I have to tell you - now, right now, before another moment passes. I cannot hold it in any longer. I jump to my feet and head for your room.
The war is over. We can be together, forever.
The door to your room is wide open, and I stride inside without knocking. My insides are twisted in knots - I've never been the emotional type, I don't really know how to express this. But somehow, I'll find a way. I have to - I have to make you understand how much I love you. How much I need you.
Your room is less of a mess than usual - it takes me a moment to realize why. Half of your junk is packed in your duffel, instead of spread out on the floor. You look up from your work with a grin.
"Heero! Man, isn't it fan-damn-tastic? It's OVER, man! Really, truly over!"
"Aa." Dammit, why can't I say more than that? Words are so easy for you, and so difficult for me. There is so much I need you to teach me - about life, about love. And now, I have a lifetime in which to learn.
"I still can't believe it! I really get to go home! Man, I can't WAIT to get back! War hero and everything - they'll roll out the red carpet, I'm sure."
"You're going back to L2?"
"Yep - soon as Peacemillion docks, I am SO outta here!" Those incredible violet eyes lock on mine. "Tell Relena-ojou-san that I'm really sorry I can't make the party. But I've got something really important waiting at home."
Your eyes and your body tell me that you're very excited about something. Something more than just the end of the war. I've never known you to miss a party - and Relena's celebration for the end of the war will be the party to end all parties.
"Duo, I."
Suddenly, you're in my arms - a warm, squirming bundle of live energy that mere skin cannot hope to contain. I tighten my hold and bury my face in your hair, inhaling the scent I have come to love so much.
"Heero, man, I can never thank you enough, buddy. You got me through some really bad times, whether you know it or not. Helping you through your nightmares made me realize that my life wasn't so bad, after all." Those purple eyes are laughing into mine now, and I feel the very edges of a smile touch my mouth.
You see it too, and laugh. "Hah! You're smiling! I KNEW you were capable of it, Yuy!"
"Duo. you. have meant a lot to me, too." I nearly growl at myself - I can do better than that! Think of it as a mission - your objective is to tell him you love him.
Ah. That I understand. Ninmu ryoukai. "Duo, I."
You've bounded out of my arms again, and are throwing clothes into the duffel at an astounding rate. I don't see how you're managing to get so much stuff in there, given the way you never fold anything before you pack it. I've never understood, despite the many times I've watched you pack, going from one boarding school to the next.
"You're really my best buddy, Heero, and I promise you, I'll never forget that. And, in honour of that." The whirlwind of motion that is Duo Maxwell pauses again before me, eyes lit from within with an emotion I've never seen from you before.
"I want you to be my best man."
"Huh?" Well, that sounded intelligent. But surely, he didn't say what I think he just said.
"While I was on L2, and you were with Quatre and Relena in the Sank Kingdom - I met this girl. Hirde. She's really, truly incredible. Heero, you'll love her, I'm sure of it. I know, I sure do."
Love. That's the emotion in your eyes. Love. For her, whoever she is. Not for me. Oh, gods.
"I know we're both still pretty young to be thinking about that kind of thing seriously," You continue, oblivious to the pain shooting through my heart, threatening to stop it in my chest. "But, hell, war makes a guy grow up fast, I guess."
You rake a hand through your hair and blow your bangs out of your eyes. It's an endearing gesture, one of the many tiny things that I love so much about you.
"Anyway, I'm gonna ask her when I get there - that's why I'm in such a rush! Dunno when the wedding will be - but, like I said, I want you to be my best man. Will ya do it?"
I stare at you for several moments, as your gaze becomes pleading. Will I do it? Will I stand as your best man, while you marry this girl? Will I watch as you crush my heart into tiny little pieces?
It's obvious that you have no idea what this is doing to me. It's equally obvious that our relationship never meant more to you than the comfort given between two comrades in a war. Oh, Duo.
"Aa." I squeeze the single word past the lump in my throat. Apparently, none of my emotion shows on my face - not surprising, given my long practice at it - for you jump in place, clapping your hands in glee.
"Oh, thankyouthankyouthankyou!" You babble, and crush me in another hug. "It's because of you, that I can do this, you know. You helped me deal with all MY demons - and now I know that everyone I care about isn't going to die. So, I can love Hirde."
You turn and sweep up your bag. "Well, the ship should be docking any second, so I gotta go. I'll never forget you, Heero. And I'll write you to let you know when the wedding will be. OH!"
You stop and turn in the doorway, and for one crazy instant, I can believe it was all another of your infamous practical jokes.
"And I expect to be at least invited to your wedding to Relena! Don't forget!"
Then you're gone. My last sight of you is the end of your braid, whipping around the doorway as it follows your movements like a faithful puppy dog. The image of your violet eyes, burning with love for this woman, haunts me still.
I don't know how long I stood there, staring blankly at the spot where you had last been. Long enough for one of the others to come looking for me. Quatre pokes his head around the door.
"Ah, Heero! There you are! What are you doing in Duo's room? Aren't you coming to dinner?"
"No."
It's not an answer to his question - it's more like a delayed reaction to the events which just took place. But he takes it at its face value.
"Ah. Okay, then. The party starts in just a few hours, so you'll probably want to start getting ready soon anyway. I'll see you later!" His cheerful face disappears again, and I'm left alone with my own thoughts once more.
"NO."
The word is more forceful this time, the emotions coming through in raw, bruising tones.
"NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!"
I scream it, as if, if I shout it loud enough, it will reach your ears, and you'll understand and come back to me.
I collapse on the floor, tears streaming down my face for the first time in more than ten years. I pound my fists on the metal deckplates until they're raw and bloody, but the pain is nothing compared to the pain in my heart.
"Nonononononono." a quiet murmuring, I don't even consciously realize I'm doing it.
How could you?
You were my light, my life - the only thing that kept me going through this horrible war. My one hope at regaining my humanity.
Relena? You think I'm going to marry Relena?
Relena is a very strong woman, and we both needed each other for stability during this war. But her infatuation with me meant nothing, and wore off long ago, anyway. We both know that we're not right for each other - I could never fit into her world, and I could never bring myself to lower her to fit into mine. I would only impede her progress towards World Pacifism.
The one I love - the one I want to spend my life with - is you. Only you.
And now you're gone.
The war is over. You're free.
The war is over. He's gone.
I have nothing to live for.
He was my everything - and now I am nothing.
Just another soldier, who has no place in a world of peace.
I don't even realize I've drawn my gun, until the cold metal of the barrel caresses my lips. I lick them, and taste the stinging metallic flavour. It is nothing compared to the warmth of your lips, the euphoric taste of your mouth.
But it's all I have left.
I swallow the barrel - like I used to swallow you, while you pumped your hips, head thrashing back and forth and screaming my name while you came. Did it truly mean so little to you? Was I nothing more than comfort?
The tiny 'click' of the hammer pulling into place - such a familiar sound. Almost comforting.
I was never meant to outlive this war, apparently. I am nothing more than another weapon - and, like all the other weapons which will be gathered up and destroyed, I am now only a dangerous nuisance.
As my finger trembles on the trigger, squeezing slowly, I finally manage the words I had been trying so hard to get out earlier.
Duo.
Ai.
Shite.
.
.