Author: CalicOcat
Disclaimer: Duo and Heero and the rest of the GW gang aren't mine. This story is. Nuff said.
See Part 1 for warnings

'Thinking'
"Speaking"

************ Time passing or scene change
*~*~*~*~*~* Major POV shift

Mission: Marriage + Chapter 8

‘This is a mistake, Yuy, and you know it... He already turned down your help with his hair once in the shower, you shouldn't ask again...' "Need any help in there, Duo?" Heero called, raising his voice to carry through the bathroom door.

"Uh, no, just have to get my hair dry. Go on down without me, I won't be much longer!"

‘See, you should have kept your mouth shut. Instead you just had to push and now he doesn't even want to go downstairs together.' "I can wait - no rush..."

"No, go on ahead, just see if you can save some of my favourites for me please! Tro tends to take all the grapes and I've noticed Wufei snags the chocolate chip muffins if he beats me down to breakfast!"

Heero winced. Things had been going so well up till now. He shouldn't have tried to rush Duo into more. With an effort, he managed to keep the hurt out of his voice as he answered, "Okay."

Quietly leaving the bedroom, a rebellious thought slipped through, ‘But it's not okay, not really. I wanted to go down together. We're supposed to be a couple now.' Heero stopped at the top of the stairs for a moment, gripping the banister with both hands as he fought to regain his mental equilibrium.

‘Stop feeling sorry for yourself, Yuy! You knew this wasn't going to happen overnight. You have to stop being so damn sensitive! If this was really just about escaping Relena's clutches and having the hots for your best friend the way that Duo thinks it is, none of this would be bothering you. You have to remember your role or Duo's going to figure out that there's more to this before you're ready for him to. He can't find out you're in love with him till after the wedding at the very earliest. He just might back out if he does, and any chance of that is too big a chance to take.'

Forcing himself to look on the bright side, Heero thought as he started down the stairs, ‘At least he asked me to save him some of his favourites, so he is planning on coming down eventually.'

In the breakfast room, he was dismayed to realize that he had only three possible choices of seats at the table. Two were on either side of Relena, the third was directly across from her. Deciding that the one across from her was the lesser evil, he filled his plate from the buffet - making sure to pick up the items Duo had requested - then sat down at the narrow table.

Heero had just torn a bite off of his croissant when he felt something brush against his leg. At first, he thought perhaps Wufei had simply bumped him in the process of crossing his legs, but when the touch was repeated a moment later, he realized that Wufei hadn't moved. A horrible suspicion entering his mind, he curled his legs back around the chair legs, hoping to put them out of reach.

Relena smiled at him and shifted in her chair, pulling it a bit closer to the table. Heero was just about to take a sip of juice when he felt something slide over his knee and up his thigh. Across the table, Relena appeared to be sliding down rather low in her chair. His appetite suddenly gone, Heero braced his hands against the table and slid his chair away from it, keeping his legs wrapped out of range as he did so. Just then Duo's cheerful "Good morning, guys!" rang out. Intending to offer Duo his seat and skip breakfast himself, he was slightly startled at the husky "Mornin', lover" that purred in his ear as the braided boy leaned over him and raided his plate.

‘What the hell is he up to?' Heero wondered suspiciously. ‘Keep my feet up...' The quick jerk that spun the chair sideways to the table caught him by surprise. ‘Shit, sometimes I forget just how strong and fast he really is. I think Shinigami guessed what Miss Butter-wouldn't-melt-in-her-mouth over there was up to...' Delighted at the method of retaliation that Duo had chosen, Heero rested his hands lightly on Duo's hips and waited to see what would come next.

"Hmm, better not eat all this myself - you're gonna need to keep your strength up too," Duo said, then pulled another grape off the cluster with his teeth.

‘He wouldn't... Not in front of all these people - would he?' As Duo leaned forward to press their mouths together, Heero realized, ‘Oh yes he would. Okay, I think I just got my appetite back.' As their tongues tangled in the process of transferring the grape, Relena's presence was completely forgotten.

*~*~*~*~*~*

Puzzled by Heero's strange behaviour, Quatre had been relieved to see Duo come in. ‘Maybe Heero will settle down now,' he thought. Cringing from the shriek of chair legs across tile (‘Those marks may never come off!'), the reprimand he intended to issue died a sudden death as he switched from irritation to shock.

Still gaping at the mind-bending spectacle of Duo Maxwell sitting on Heero Yuy's lap and feeding him grapes - with his mouth no less - Quatre felt a light tap on his shoulder.

"You know, I like grapes too," Trowa observed pointedly. "Why don't I get that kind of service?"

"Trowa! " Quatre sputtered. "In public?! "

"Why not? They," Trowa waved a cluster of grapes towards Duo and Heero, "obviously won't mind."

"TROWA! "

*~*~*~*~*~*

‘Hmm, guess we know why those two are late for breakfast,' Dorothy thought, surveying the marks decorating Heero's neck as he took a seat at the table. ‘I wonder what Miss Relena will make of this?' Stealing a sideways glance at the girl in question, she wondered why Relena appeared to be sliding down so low in her chair. Wondered, until Yuy shoved his chair away from the table, that is. ‘She didn't! I don't believe it - little Miss Prim-and-Proper just tried to play footsie with him! I wonder what he'll do... Somehow, I doubt he wants to announce what she tried to the entire table, but he must know that if he pulls his chair back up again she'll try again.'

Spotting Duo's narrowed, glittering gaze directed angrily at Relena, Dorothy was expecting fireworks. ‘Ah ha, someone else has figured out what she was up to...' Then that angry expression changed to a deliciously mischievously evil smirk. ‘Oh, this should be good,' she thought happily. ‘Hmm, no popcorn, guess I'll have to settle for grapes.' Watching what Duo was doing with his grapes, however, changed her mind. ‘I think I'll pass on the grapes - they just won't taste the same eating them all by myself... Duo's method looks so much more enjoyable...'

Turning her gaze towards Relena, Dorothy was amused to see that her pale, perfect skin had turned a distinctly unattractive, blotchy red. That perfect pink mouth currently looked like it belonged on a fish as, after one initial squawk of outrage, it repeatedly opened and closed soundlessly. As Heero reached out and picked up a melon ball off of his plate, placing it in his own mouth then leaning forward slightly to share it with Duo, Relena's face darkened even further. Dorothy quickly placed her hands over her ears in preparation for what was certainly coming next.

SHR-I-I-I-E-E-E-E-K!!

"WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING, MAXWELL! YOU PERVERTED COMMON LITTLE LOWLIFE, HOW DARE YOU DO SUCH A DISGUSTING THING IN PUBLIC! YOU'VE PERVERTED HEERO WITH YOUR REVOLTING HABITS! I'M SHOCKED AND APPALLED AT SUCH OUTRAGEOUS BEHAVIOUR! QUATRE WINNER, HOW CAN YOU CONDONE SUCH DREADFUL BEHAVIOUR IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD! OH, THAT'S RIGHT, YOU AND THAT COMMON CIRCUS CLOWN ARE THE SAME WAY! THIS IS ABSOLUTELY DISGRACEFUL! WHY IF -- "

Abruptly, there was sudden, blessed, silence.

"Thank you, Wufei," Quatre said, slowly unclenching his white-knuckled fists.

"She seemed to be a bit overwrought," Wufei said, releasing the nerve-pinch that he had used to knock Relena out. "I thought a rest would be a good idea."

"I think perhaps Miss Relena would be more comfortable staying in a less ‘disgraceful' household," Quatre said in a perfectly calm, collected voice. "Dorothy, if you wish to stay, you may, as you have been a perfectly pleasant houseguest. That," he said, pointing one slightly shaking finger at Relena's unconscious body, "however, is no longer welcome on Winner property. Any Winner property. Please have Pargan see to her removal from this one immediately."

"Certainly," Dorothy agreed. "And I believe that I will stay. At least until after the wedding." ‘The people here are much more interesting than those that can usually be found dancing attendance on Relena.'

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