This is the first Heero POV in the Domestic Bliss Arc.
Author: Flamika
Category: Romance Warnings: shounen-ai, sap, mild angst, implied masturbation
Pairings: 1+2
Rating: R
Notes: Heero's POV (the first in the DB Arc!)
Arc: Domestic Bliss

Boundaries of Dream

I wait here at the boundaries of dream All shadow-wrapped...
"The Vampire Sestina" Neil Gaiman

Sometimes I have nightmares.

To most, the very idea of me being plagued by dream demons is just inconceivable. When people look at me, all they usually see is this imperturbable, callous being with hard, empty eyes almost hidden from underneath a mop of unruly brown bangs. They think I'm strong; they think there is nothing in the world that can frighten me - an assumption that is false in the purest sense of the word. The world seems to think that if one does not fear death, then one has transcended this certitude and has nothing more to fear for the remainder of their life.

People are such fools.

I don't fear death because I put no value whatsoever on my own life, especially now that the war is over. I was better at killing people than your average soldier. So what? It's nothing to be proud of, as far as I'm concerned. Some want to fall to their knees and worship the ground I walk on. I do not understand this. Why would they want to do such a thing?

I can't even begin to tell you how many times I've pondered this senseless question, letting the "why" run around over and over in my head until I wish all thoughts could be purged from my mind forever. I think far too much as it is. But after many musings, I have come up with a semi-satisfactory answer. People never worship a person; they worship an ideal, a figurehead - a symbol. The original Heero Yuy was a figurehead of peace, and his inevitable death made him into an eternal legend. The same is undoubtedly true with King Peacecraft of the Sanq Kingdom. The same WAS true with Queen Relena Peacecraft until she disinherited herself and became Vice Foreign Minister Darlian, breaking the cage that had held her family imprisoned for generations.

And the same is true with me. Heero Yuy. No, not the peace-oriented Heero Yuy who campaigned in the colonies for total pacifism. I'm Heero Yuy the soldier who fought for peace by destroying his enemies with sheer brute force and coldhearted military tactics. Heero Yuy of the deep blue eyes who does not allow his heart to be touched by any other. The one who destroyed Libra and saved the Earth. The one who never cries, never smiles.

I'm the Perfect Soldier.

Give me a break.

If you cut my skin, my blood will run red, just like yours. If you say cruel things to me, sometimes it'll hurt me, sometimes I won't care. And I'm sure that if I ever cried, my tears would be hot and salty. Just like yours. But I don't think I've ever cried in my entire life, at least not that I remember. I have found that I unconsciously blot out memories that may hinder my ability to function as a member of the Preventers. During the day, I am safe from these bottled demons of the past. However, when sleep overtakes me, I fall into the abyss of dream. Just like you do, I'm sure. And I dream just like the next person. I have nightmares - fast and furious nightmares filled with blood and tears and shattered innocence. It's what every soldier fears after he has no more wars left to fight. He fears the nightmares, or maybe he just fears fear. I know that I'm afraid sometimes, late at night when I'm alone with agonizing memories, hovering on the boundaries of dream, afraid to take the plunge into the bitter sweetness of sleep. But I know that I am not the only one with such a plight.

Sometimes Duo has nightmares, too.

I always hear him muttering his sleep, squirming and thrashing and getting tangled in his thin sheets until he finally ends up unconsciously kicking them to the floor, leaving himself exposed to the cold air of our room at night. And always, if I find that sleep is unattainable for me, I'll lay on my side and watch him sleep. Duo is not an attractive sleeper. He kicks, rolls over, punches, talks, scratches, drools, snores, and makes all sorts of odd noises within the embrace of his own dreams and nightmares. But I like watching him; I don't know why. He still has the same style of sleep from wartimes - a style that I am familiar with due to the time we spent together at the numerous schools we were shuttled back and forth to. New kids were always forced to room together, and I quickly learned to deal with the nocturnal oddities of my unwanted colleague. It was another burden that I needed to deal with for the sake of the mission.

Just another burden.

How times change. Back then, I never would have thought that, three and a half years later, I would be sharing a bedroom with that very same braided baka, willingly subjecting myself to his loud snores as he slobbered all over his pillowcase. His eyelids fluttered slightly as he slumbered, his tattered braid dangling off the edge of the bed, a few inches short of brushing the carpet. I followed the braid's slight swinging motions with my eyes, not the least bit drowsy. Duo shifted suddenly in his sleep, flopping onto his back, legs spread wide and feet poking out from underneath his thin sheets. His tongue darted out to wet his lips almost teasingly, and I couldn't help but warily wonder what he was dreaming of.

Because sometimes Duo... other dreams. Dreams that I'm certain are not of the nightmarish breed.

So far, I've only witnessed the passage of such dreams twice, and I can't decide whether or not I want to see another one. Both times, they happened the same way. Duo's breaths started coming hard and fast, his tongue in constant motion, darting and flicking out repeatedly as if the air tasted of something sweet. His body squirmed restlessly on the bed, fingers clenching and unclenching in the sheets as a peculiar look of painful bliss appeared on his handsome face. He began to make deep, erotic noises, moaning and groaning as his hips suddenly took over much of his body's motions, writhing underneath the sheets. And as I watched in rapt fascination, his dreaming hands suddenly slid down the flat planes of his strong stomach and dropped down into the area between his legs, grasping and fondling himself while still in the grips of the dream, his moans of ecstasy filling the room.

And both times, as I watched Duo touch himself, I felt a sharp spike of hot need lance through my belly and loins, so horribly unfamiliar and frightening in a whole new way. For better or worse, Duo had always awakened before he climaxed, and I had feigned sleep as he checked to make sure I hadn't seen or heard anything before he made a desperate rush for the bathroom. In the morning, he acted like nothing had happened.

His embarrassment confused me at the time. Didn't everybody do it?

Sometimes I catch myself wondering whom he was dreaming of? Who could make him so hot that he felt the need to touch himself in his sleep?

But I concluded that he wasn't having one of THOSE dreams as I lay in my bed watching him that night. There was no bliss on his face, and the slight puckering between his graceful eyebrows only suggested discomfort, maybe even pain. I lifted myself onto one elbow, peering calmly across the room at my sleeping partner. I wondered if he was having another nightmare. Then he suddenly snorted - very bull-like - and reached to clumsily scratch the skin between his eyes. I rolled my eyes in exasperation. All he had was a damn itch.

As if to reaffirm my conclusion, he yawned and scratched his bare chest before rolling over onto his belly, snoring into the pillow. Rubbing the side of my neck tiredly, my gaze instinctively drifted over where Duo's digital alarm clock with its needlessly bright fluorescent numbers was breaking cheerily through the darkness of the room. 4:42 A.M. I had to be at work at 5:30, but Duo wasn't due in until 7:00, which meant that I had to start getting ready in a few minutes while he continued slobbering happily on his pillow.

With an internal sigh, I threw back the covers of my cold bed and lowered my feet to the floor, pausing only to stretch out my cramped limbs before standing up and walking over to the dresser. Or, at least I had originally INTENDED to walk over to the dresser, but my feet suddenly decided that they would rather head in the direction of Duo's rumpled bed.

He was sprawled artlessly amongst the sheets, naked from the waist up. His long eyelashes fluttered slightly as he slept, a natural motion that seemed delicate in comparison to the earthquake caliber snores that were issuing from his mouth. Duo only snores sometimes, but when he does, I'm certain that his snores would definitely measure quite high up on the Richter Scale. His snoring doesn't bother me, though, and neither does it take away from the general aura he exudes while clutched in the arms of Morpheus. Duo sleeps like any other normal young man, and that is what makes him so alluring.

//Alluring... his skin looks so warm. My bed is always cold//

My fingers were reaching out to grip the sheets of Duo's bed before I could reign them in. But once I became aware of what I was doing, I realized that I didn't want to stop. Cautiously, I lifted a portion of the sheets from the bed, Duo's warmth and scent clinging to them. Keeping a careful eye on my roommate for any signs of awakening, I slowly eased myself down onto the bed with him, lying as close to him as I dared, the sheets settling back over us unobtrusively.

It was a bad habit that I developed during the war: crawling into bed with Duo. It all started when we were sharing a room at some institute or another. I had a bad nightmare. A really bad one. Funny thing is that now I can't recall what precisely it was about, but I do know that when I awakened, the room was spinning, my heart was pounding hard and fast, and my bed was damp with cold sweat, stinking of blood and fear. And so I had all but tumbled out of the bed - cast out - and lurched over to where Duo was slumbering quietly. Without hesitation, I had crawled under the sheets and curled up against him. And so there I had remained, basking in his warmth and scent until my quaking limbs had become still and my breathing had slowed down to normal pace.

Horrible habit it may have been - and still is - but it felt so good, lying there next to him, alone in the dark with only the night as witness to my unspoken expression of trust. For that's what it was, wasn't it? I trusted Duo more than I had trusted anyone before in my entire life. But I didn't think too much about it during the war. I wouldn't permit myself to dwell on Duo for any more time than was necessary. But now... now there is so much time, so much possibility...

It frightens me sometimes.

Frightens me like the time I had started crawling into bed with Duo just because I wanted to. Nightmare or not, I would be lying at his unknowing side in the dead of the night, listening to the sound of his breathing fill the room. Relishing how delightfully warm his body was. Letting his musky scent wash over me like a drug.

I slept next to Trowa once, in our many travels together, and it wasn't the same. His body wasn't as warm. He didn't smell like Duo. He didn't snore like him. He didn't kick me in the groin in the middle of the night. Maybe it was because the relationship between Trowa and I was perfectly platonic. I didn't... want him. It was nice sleeping next to him just for the sake of not being alone, but he wasn't Duo.

Now, this was Duo. I practically went deaf from his snores as I curled - cuddled? snuggled? - against his warm body, cautiously resting one of my arms on his smooth back, which was rising and falling with his slow, steady breaths. His scent surrounded to me, and I allowed it to sink into my skin and hair for the time being, knowing that it would be washed away when I showered in few minutes.

I frowned slightly. I didn't want to leave him, but I also couldn't stay long in case I fell asleep, and he woke up to find me asleep and dreaming in his armpit. Yet, just lying next to him was making me feel warm and drowsy and comfortable. I imagined I had that goofy look on my face - the same one Duo gets when he relaxes in a bathtub filled with steaming hot water.

Not that I peek on Duo when he takes a bath, of course. Don't be ridiculous.

Shifting closer to the man who had become far more to me than just a best friend, I lightly nuzzled his bangs, inhaling the scent of his shampoo. It was some cheap, obscure aroma not meant to smell like anything, but Duo's personal scent amplified and glorified it. I love the way Duo smells. I love so many things about him, though I would probably never work up the nerve to tell him half of them.

As if breathing in the scent of his hair wasn't enough, I had to have more. I swear, I sometimes lose all control around Duo. It's a wonderful feeling, but it's also frightening - a price I'm more than willing to pay.

Burying my face in the fragrant hollow between Duo's neck and shoulder, I breathed in deeply. He smelled salty, musky - masculine. The same scent that I found on his pillow, in the towels he had used earlier that night. The same scent I find on my shirts after he borrows them. He always promises that he's going to wash my shirts after he wears them so he won't leave his "odoriferous stench" on them, but he never does. I don't care, really.

I raised myself up onto one elbow and stared down at Duo as he slept on, oblivious to my presence in his bed. There was now an impressive puddle of drool on the pillow. I felt small smile come to my lips. Duo's so... Duo, even when he's dead to the world.

"I had a nightmare earlier tonight," I suddenly heard myself whispering to his unconscious form.

Duo snorted softly.

"I don't remember what it was about, but I felt sick afterwards."

Duo scratched his nose.

"I'm supposed to go to work in a little while, but I'm going to lie here in bed with you for now. Is that alright?"

Duo kept on snoring.

"Thanks, Duo. You're my best friend, you know."

I leaned down and kissed his cheek gently, relishing the feel of the warm, soft skin underneath my lips.

//I love you, Duo.//

He smiled quietly in his sleep, but I didn't think anything of it. I know Duo's breathing patterns, and I was absolutely certain that he wasn't awake. But as I settled down next to him and closed my eyes against the morning light filling our room, I couldn't help but wonder if somehow, he had heard me.

~fin

I just don't want to lose you tonight
I just want to you to be with me
Until daybreak

- "Just Communication [English Version]"

(Author's Notes: I know it might have been out of character for Heero to say and do some of the things in here, but, hey, this takes place after the war is over. You've got to expect some changes in his character after he's been freed from the threat of war.)  

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