Author: Dacia

Duoman: Ships in the Night + Part 3

+

Chang Wufei was not an impatient man. Waiting was an occupation he had mastered years ago. When others were gnashing their teeth in expectation, he sat calmly knowing that time was something over which he had no control. Which is why he refused to acknowledge his present actions as what they actually were -- pacing.

Quatre reclined gracefully on the bed, watching as his partner prowled the room like a caged tiger.

"Ummm, Wufei?"

"Yes?"

"Want to give it a rest?"

"What?"

Quatre gave him a look that had no need of words.

"Oh. Yeah. Right."

He moved to the foot of the bed and literally collapsed on to it, his eyes gazing sightlessly at the ceiling. He felt he bed move as Quatre crawled down next to him.

"Geez, 'Fei. I've never seen you like this before. You ok?"

The Chinese man sighed, his eyes focusing again. //That really is a very nice tromp l'oeil fresco on the ceiling. Rococo, if I'm not mistaken...//

"'Fei ..."

Wufei sighed. "I do believe I'm nervous Quatre."

"Nervous? You don't get nervous."

"I know. It's almost funny."

"It's Treize, isn't it?"

Wufei pulled Quatre closer to take him in his arms. The eyes which gazed so deeply into his own were steady and cool. He could feel himself sinking into them. When he spoke, his voice was little more than a whisper. "I want him."

He was almost disappointed to not see revulsion in Quatre's face. Wasn't he tainted now? Wasn't this the worst thing he could do? He was a good guy. Good guys did not want bad guys. At least not in his new and all but mind-blowing definition of 'want'.

There was a quiet knock on the door.

"Come!"

Wufei pressed his lips chastely to Quatre's. His words were for Quatre's ears alone.

"You trust me?"

"I hope I'm not interrupting anything."

Quatre felt Wufei's whole body tense at the newcomer's words. His answer was the only gift he had to give. He only hoped it was enough to see him through.

"Implicitly."

He pulled away and moved off the bed to stand up. "No. I was just leaving." With one last look to Wufei, he left.

"What a pretty boy. Is he yours?"

"He's a loaner," answered Wufei, rather truthfully.

He could feel the ginger-haired man's golden gaze travel the length of his body. This man was a born predator and it seemed the hunt was on. Wufei felt a sliver of dread strike dangerously close to his heart at the thought, yet it was a game he had no choice but to play.

"I take it this is 'later'."

He began to sit up only to feel a strong hand press him back down to the bed.

"Don't get up on my account. I like you right where you are."

He followed Treize with his eyes as the older man crossed to the small bar where he proceeded to pour himself a neat scotch.

"You're not what I expected," said Wufei finally.

"No?"

At the press of a button, the room lights dimmed. The golden glow of San Rommell's false sunset bathed the room in a warm glow.

"No."

"What did you expect?"

"I expected this to be a deal like any other."

Treize's hand froze as he lifted the cut glass tumbler to his lips. "You know who I am?"

"I know."

"I see."

Wufei waited calmly though the silence. In the eye of the storm it seemed he had found his fortitude once again.

"I have to admit you're not what I expected, either," Treize said at last.

"And what did you expect?"

He could not possibly have been aware of how his dark eyes glimmered in the orange/red light, nor the effect it was having on the man who even now steadily approached him.

"For you to be like the others."

He allowed Treize to crawl up the bed until the other man hovered above him.

"But you're not, are you."

Wufei's only answer was a smile.

"What I'd like to do with you..."

Treize's words were almost a low growl as he dipped his head to lingeringly taste the lips poised so temptingly beneath his own. After a few heated eternities, he broke the kiss off almost violently.

"Damn..."

Wufei's resulting breathlessness worried him more than slightly. For a split second, it was all he could do to keep himself from pinning Treize to the bed and ravishing him. But he did not, could not, allow his emotions to control him. The coldness of his next words shocked even him.

"First we have business to discuss, ne?"

Treize jerked as if he had been slapped, causing Wufei to immediately regret his words. With an inward sigh, he told himself that it was all for the best.

"Yes. Business." His reply was almost a sneer. "There's a man I think you should meet."

Treize was standing beside him, by this time. Wufei took his offered hand, gasping as the tall man pulled him close. The hardness of his gaze was unmistakable.

"Come with me."

Wufei felt hard pressed to keep up with Treize as he led him through the labyrinthine maze that composed San Rommell's inner workings. Even though his mind was focused on his mission, he could not help the small voice that begged him to make things right between them.

"Treize..."

He grasped the other man's wrist, effectively halting his forward motion. When Treize would not turn to met his eyes, he pushed the taller man against the wall.

"Do you have any idea what it is you're doing to me? Can you possibly understand how hard this is? My god, Treize..."

He kissed him hungrily, moaning softly as he felt Treize respond to his touch. Without breaking contact, Treize flipped them around until it was Wufei whose back was to the wall.

"It wasn't supposed to be like this," he said when at last they broke apart.

Wufei smiled sadly. "But for now it's the way it must be."

"Yes." Treize backed away from the black-haired boy with no small effort. He looked down the hall, as if only now truly seeing their surroundings. "We're here," he said. "Are you sure you want to do this?"

"No." Undercover work was never more perverse than when he had no need to lie. "But I have no choice."

The taller man nodded once, more in recognition of Wufei's words as a universal truth that pertaining solely to this situation. "Neither do I."

The door opened as Treize neared without another word, they both stepped over the threshold.

+

Heero Yuy was impressed. After all, it wasn't every day that an explanation made him more confused. "Let me get this straight," he began. "Zechs Merquise does not exist."

"Exactly." The man he and Duo both referred to as Zechs Merquise grinned encouragingly. He leaned back against his desk, reclining on its hard, defined edge and crossed his arms.

"And San Rommell is little more than a haven for Earth-side entrepreneurs attempting to avoid Earth Sphere Alliance laws."

Duo spun around from his position in front of Wing Zero where he had been since the beginning of this conversation, seemingly oblivious to what had been said.

"If I may..." he broke in.

Zechs raised an inquisitive eyebrow. Heero could tell that the blonde didn't quite know what to make of his braided counterpart. He found that to be a common reaction.

"Be my guest."

"For the past 16 months, the real owner of San Rommell, we'll call him Mr. Ugly, had been amassing an untidy and unwieldy amount of Earthside currency. Not content with shady business dealings and black market finagling, Mr. Ugly decided the best method of obtaining wealth was the old fashioned way -- to take it from someone else. Setting up San Rommell as a haven for morally deficient, financially well-endowed individuals, he lures in six tackily rich men, seduces them into signing over their liquid assets in their entirety, and then disposes of them in a manner which guarantees that neither they nor their physical remains will ever be seen again."

"That's amazing," said Zechs. "How did you figure that out?"

Duo tapped the side of his nose knowingly. "Hell, baby -- you ain't seen nothing yet."

"No," smiled Zechs. "I don't suppose I have."

Heero tried to ignore the fact that Zechs was flirting quite openly with Duo. He was truly amazed at how difficult this was to accomplish.

"That's the 'how'," he said finally. "But that leaves us with quite a few 'whys'."

"Hit me with your best shot." The boy's violet eyes flashed wickedly.

Knowing full well that his creation's statement could be taken one of two ways, he decided on the one that did not call for physical contact.

"Why is he doing this?"

"To upset Earth's economy. By stockpiling earth currency, he is effectively removing it from the market." [4]

Heero nodded. He had supposed as much. He aimed his next question to Zechs. "Any why are you doing this?"

"I was wondering when we'd get around to that." For a man who had just been called upon to explain his own nonexistence, he was singularly unpreturbed. "Let's just say I'm paying the price for all my past misdeeds."

"Blackmail?" questioned Duo.

"In a word."

"And are you the seducer in this little equation?" continued Heero.

"No. I am merely a coordinator. I find I do not have the knack for seduction."

Judging by the blonde's effect on Duoman and, he had to admit, himself, Heero found this hard to believe but accepted it nonetheless. "You don't strike me as the murdering type."

"I'm not, Preventer Yuy. I can assure you. Did it perhaps strike you as rather odd that the San Rommell security contingent knew who you were, Preventer Yuy?"

If Zechs' change of topic had not been enough to draw Heero's attention, his emphasis of his title could not have failed to attract his notice.

"Yes," he agreed, "'Strike' being the operative word."

Zechs grimaced. "Quite. They were prepared for your arrival owing to the simple fact that they were informed you would be coming."

"Sumimasen, blondie," spoke Duo, "but we ourselves had no idea we'd be coming here until we did." He paused, eyes wide. "Is your security force staffed by psychics? That would be so cool..."

"No, my pet. Not exactly." His smile was positively luminous in the face of Duo's unflagging charm. Duo literally basked in its glow. "I have been attempting to contact the Preventers for some time now, a deed made more complicated due to the fact that even though I am publicly Chief of Operations, in actuality I am little more than a figurehead with no real power and no one to trust. When word got out that the Preventers had been informed of what's been going on here, the station went on a general alert. And you, Preventer Yuy, due to your association with Vice Minister Darlien, are perhaps the most recognizable figure in your organization. It is perhaps coincidence alone that you were sent here."

Heero snorted. "Remind me to thank Relena when we get home."

Duo laughed until he was struck by what he considered to be a very disturbing though. "But he wasn't the one sent."

"What do you mean?"

"I mean that Heero is not officially on the case."

Zechs closed his eyes and brought a long fingered hand up to massage his temples. "Truly?"

"Truly."

"This isn't good."

"No?" Heero shared a glance with Duo. Just what was it they had gotten themselves into?

"No," continued Zechs. "This is, in fact, very bad."

"How so?"

"Do you recall me mentioning that I could not trust anyone here?"

"Yes..."

"If that held true before I contacted the Preventers, it applies even more now."

Each passing moment gave Duo more pieces to the puzzle, the fragments falling into place to form a ragged whole.

"You're as much a fugitive as we are."

"Precisely." The blonde man had by now reopened his eyes, though he had still to lose his pained expression. "There's not much I can do now to help your friend. Whether he's been taken as another victim, which I am only supposing was his cover, or he is revealed as an Earth Sphere Alliance Official, I'm afraid he is in great peril."

Duo's grin resurfaced in a shot.

"Somehow," said Heero with an inward groan as he noted Duo's now nearly maniacal features, "I don't think that will be a problem."

+


[4] You all are gonna have to make due with this. My college level economics class notwithstanding, I really have no idea what the hell I'm talking about. ^_^


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