by Aoe

Stuck With You... + Part 2


So here I am, early to work again. I need a life.

The last shift is just shuffling out the door. Wufei is here, too, but Wufei needs a life more than I do. Heero will be here at eight on the dot. Quatre will show up fifteen minutes late, flustered and frowning, with a tale of woe of the Hardworking Young Man. Only Ken will be impressed.

I think Ken wants to screw him.

There was a time that would have made me jealous. But I guess things change. Even me.

So... Monday. What to do today? Maybe I'll get lucky and there will be an actual case to work on.

Not likely. Nobody really does anything on Mondays. Everybody always gets themselves all worked up on Sundays, "Oh, tomorrow I'll get an early start and I'll get so much done... " But then it's Monday and nobody wants to do anything because it's Monday. You have all week, after all.

Sigh. Even writing in this little journal thingy of mine is getting boring. Maybe I'll pretend to be productive for a while. Shuffle some folders around. Don't want to burn myself out on typing too early in the day.

Trowa shut down the word file, glancing around the room for something interesting.

Quatre came through the office doors, a dark scowl on his face, his pale cheeks flushed with irritation and cold. He slammed his coat down like he wanted someone to listen to him bitch.

Trowa smirked as Ken picked up the cue and hurried over with a mug of tea.

Yup, he definitely wants to screw Quatre.

"Somebody parked a motorcycle in my parking space!" Quatre complained loudly. This remark earned him a few irritated glances from various coworkers.

Wufei sneered and reminded him, "We don't have reserved parking spaces, Winner."

Quatre glowered at the Chinese man, who was leaning back in his chair unabashedly squeezing away at a hand exerciser. Wufei was the sort of person who could blatantly not do work and never receive any comments about it.

"Someone is parked in the space that I always park in," Quatre corrected himself coldly.

Wufei shrugged. "So? Maybe if you got here on time, the spot would have been open."

Quatre's cheeks went a few shades darker as he prepared to share his daily trials and tribulations with the Chinese man.

Just as the Arabian was about to begin his diatribe, though, the door to Une's office opened and a man walked into the main office.

A momentary hush fell over the room, and Trowa got the odd impression that some sort of soundtrack with a heavy techno beat should have picked up at that instant.

The new arrival certainly looked like the sort of person who had his own personal soundtrack. Trowa felt heat rising in his cheeks at the sight. He wasn't usually the sort to be turned on by just the physical, but everybody had hormones, and from the looks of several of his coworkers, Trowa wasn't the only person in the room having shamelessly perverted thoughts at the moment. Trowa felt a strong sense of unity with the other agents present, and he imagined he could almost hear the mental echo of the thought they were all sharing for an instant: Damn, this guy is hot!

The man wore tight faded jeans that clung to firmly muscled yet slender legs, and a white tee shirt neatly tucked into the jeans. The tee shirt had writing on it, but Trowa couldn't read it beneath the black leather jacket the man wore. The jacket was cut like a suit jacket, complete with buttons, but hung open. A black motorcycle helmet with a cross of white reflective tape on the side dangled from one hand, the other in his jacket pocket. He wore dark sunglasses, and gold-shot light brown bangs dangled in front of the lenses. His hair was worn in a short, slightly shaggy cut. It was similar to Heero's, but a little longer and looking more artfully tousled than perpetually mussy. The blond streaks were either artificial, or the result of a lot of time in the sun. Considering the nicely bronzed tone of the man's skin, Trowa was guessing it was the latter. The guy stood out like a sore thumb in the sea of pasty white flesh in the office. Completing the rebel-without-a-cause ensemble was the cocky, crooked grin on the man's face.

Everyone stopped pretending to work for a moment to watch him walk purposefully and confidently through the room.

He set his helmet down with a thump on Duo's desk.

Trowa immediately sat forward in his seat, frowning. Wufei's exerciser dropped to his desktop with a thud. Quatre glowered. Heero looked up from his work with a frigid glare.

"That desk is taken," Heero informed the man flatly.

Dark glasses turned to smirk at the Japanese man, ignoring the vicious look. He was either very confident or very stupid. He dropped into Duo's chair and swung his feet up on the desk, revealing steel-toed black boots. "S'right," he drawled. "By me."

Heero rose slowly from his seat, cold menace almost radiating from him. "Maybe you didn't hear me," he growled.

The guy frowned, setting his feet on the floor and leaning toward Heero. He pulled off the sunglasses and hooked them in the collar of his shirt.

Trowa blinked in surprise. Heero froze, blue eyes widening.

Duo glowered at Heero with narrowed violet eyes and snapped, "I heard you just fine. But it's my goddamn desk, so piss off and mind your own beeswax."

Heero stared at Duo in amazement. "B-beeswax?" he muttered in confusion.

Duo smirked at him and turned to Wufei who had just stepped up beside his desk. Wufei leaned over, resting a hand on the back of Duo's chair and smiling suavely as he commented, "Welcome back, Maxwell."

Trowa frowned slightly at the odd tone in Wufei's voice. His frown deepened as the Chinese man continued to hover close to Duo.

"Something I can help you with, Wu?" Duo asked pointedly, leaning back in his chair to increase the distance between them. Heero, Trowa noted, was scowling angrily again. Wufei smirked and leaned closer.

"Not really. You just look so... different. Without the braid," the Chinese man remarked.

Duo smirked right back at him. And did it better, too, Trowa thought. "Yeah, well... I thought it was time for a change," Duo explained, running a hand through his short hair.

"Duo! It's so good to see you again! How have you been?" Quatre broke in, all solicitous concern, and surreptitiously bumped Wufei away from Duo with his hip. Wufei shot the blond a dirty look, but retreated to his own desk, which was only one row over from Duo anyway.

Duo smiled up at Quatre and the two engaged in the sort of babbling conversation two talkative friends who haven't seen one another in a while generally have when meeting. Trowa tuned it out and studied Duo more closely.

He looked good. Of course, Duo had always looked good, except for that unhappy time just before he'd left for parts unknown. But Duo had always had a sort of childish cuteness to his look that was very misleading. He wasn't childish, and he wasn't really cute either.

Not that he wasn't attractive, because he certainly was that. But "cute" had ceased to cover Duo's appearance around age eighteen. His cheeks had lost their childish roundness, revealing a firm jaw and strong chin. Heero's features still retained their youthful delicacy, and next to him, despite his sparkling eyes and lustrous hair, Duo had paled in comparison. With the new haircut, though, Trowa decided that it wasn't that Duo was less attractive than Heero, just attractive in a different way. Heero was beautiful, with his exotic, delicate features, but Duo was handsome. His features were still somewhat sharp, but they had acquired stronger, more masculine lines over the years. You just couldn't see it under all that hair.

You could see it now, though.

Everybody could see it now.

Trowa glanced around the room, noting the many covert and not-so-covert stares Duo was getting. He looked back to Duo and something in the tilt of the man's lips, in the casual grace of his posture, told Trowa Duo was just as aware of the attention he was getting.

And he liked it.

Trowa looked over at Heero.

Ooh, not good.

He quickly turned back to his computer screen.

Heero didn't like all those people looking at Duo like that.

Heero didn't like it one bit.

I feel like writing something along the lines of "Dear Diary, Oooh! The hottest guy just walked in! I wonder if he has a boyfriend?"

But that would be childish.

Besides, I'm pretty sure he doesn't have a boyfriend.

I believe the expression is "Bonus!"

But Heero does not look happy. He's blanketed the area around Duo's desk with his harshest death glare. Quatre, of course, is ignoring it completely, still chatting with Duo.

Quatre will do anything to avoid work.

Not that I can blame him this time though. I'd really like to go over myself. It seems so strange, after I was thinking so much about Duo yesterday, that he just showed up today. It's almost like my thoughts summoned him. Think of the Devil and he shall come? I think it's supposed to be speak, but...

Wufei is still staring. He's got this almost slimy grin on his face. It reminds me a bit of Treize Khushrenada, somehow. There's still that air of dignified reserve, but with this strange undertone of used car salesman to it.

I wonder what he's thinking.

On second thought, I bet I can guess. Pig. Poor Duo's been gone for months, who-knows-where, doing God-knows-what, and he finally comes back to have Wufei licking his lips over him...

Okay. Thinking soothing thoughts.


Heero's still glaring, and Wufei's still smarming, and Quatre's still chatting.

Left to his own devices, Quatre will chat all day.

I want to say hello.

But Quatre's still chatting.

I'll wait a few minutes.

Duo may look different, but he seems no more inclined to work than ever. It's been ten minutes, and they're STILL CHATTING.

Of course, Duo doesn't have any files yet.

Okay, guys... twenty-five minutes now...

Screw this.