Author: Maldoror
see chap. 1 for warnings, notes, disclaimer


//THIS// is Heero's entries on his laptop.

Trial and Error + Chapter 13

//Mission Duration: 17 days and some hours.

I don't know what to do. I'm in love with Duo. I KNOW this but I can't explain it -why, how, when, what it means exactly- I just FEEL it- it makes no sense whatsoever.

I did try to understand it last night. I made a list of all the reasons I think I love Duo (Ref:List_love.txt). It turns out to be identical to the list I made nearly two years ago when we moved in together and I was trying to figure out if Duo and the others were, in fact, my friends (Ref: /backup/AC197/List_friends_reasons.txt). Nothing's changed, Duo is still my best friend. So where's this love thing coming from!! The others are my friends too but I'm not in love with them. Yet the only difference I can see between them and Duo is that they are not. Not Duo, that is. Where's the sense in that?! I can't analyze this...

And what do I do now? I'm a killer, a code name with no substance, with a few atrophied emotions and no idea how to behave, and I'm in love with my best friend who's just had his heart broken through my good offices and how will I ever go about explaining any of this to Duo?

Well at least I now figured out why my missions keep failing. I still don't know anything about love, I can't seem to grasp it, and that's because it's crept up behind me and stabbed me in the back.

One thing's for sure. Until I figure this out I can't say anything to Duo. He's my best friend and my track record with love is a disaster on par with Quatre thinking it was a really good idea to build Wing Zero. I won't ruin the one good thing I have in my life right now. Once I figure out this love thing, maybe

//



Heero stared with dull eyes out the window as Duo, Trowa and Quatre got out of the car. Security waved them through and Relena met them at the palace steps, beaming. Wufei was with her. Heero had decided he'd not be the best thing to guard Relena in his present state and has asked Wufei to take over during the party. He'd expected the Chinese Preventer to make a huge fuss; after all, he'd been trying to leave his post, not get saddled with extra duties. Possibly Wufei had picked up a fraction of Heero's mood because he had not complained.

Heero did not know what to do. He'd avoided Duo by leaving the house at dawn for the palace, and staying there until their collective party. But this was only a temporary measure.

Once he figured out this love thing - assuming he could - he should talk to Duo. Not that he knew what he'd say. 'Hi Duo, you should know that having Daniels break your heart was my fault, but actually it turns out I think I'm in love with you, although I'm damned if I can tell you why, or what it means exactly' just didn't seem to cut it.

And what would Duo do? Be shocked? Angry? Insulted? Would he laugh? Would he maybe get over Daniels long enough to give Heero a chance? That last possibility almost frightened him the most. What would he do then?! Thanks to Relena's damn books he knew how someone in love was supposed to behave, but he didn't think he could act that stupid even if he tried. He didn't think Duo would either...He just couldn't see it happening.

Well, first things first. His mind had somewhat recuperated from the shock of the previous night and was slowly regaining its orderliness.

Step 1: Try to put the Daniels thing behind them, help Duo get over the rat, that was the least he could do.

Step 2: Try to figure out what it was he was feeling. What this love thing was that made him tense and tingly and slightly uncomfortable every time he thought of Duo. Maybe he should sit down for a long session with Relena's romances, a book or two on biology and his laptop, and just brainstorm it until he'd figured it out.

Step 3: Talk to Duo and...well, it'd be up to Duo what happened next. He couldn't see his friend falling for him but then again the one thing that was obvious from all this mess was that he was missing a few parameters to understand and predict how love would behave. Maybe after he'd done some research he'd have a better idea if Duo loving him in return was even remotely possible or not.

But it would probably never come to that; he saw how Trowa had a hand on Duo's shoulder as they approached Relena on the palace steps. Duo looked a bit tired but otherwise his normal cheerful self. Quatre was talking to him, wearing his gentle smile that seemed to make everything less hurtful. And Trowa was walking on his other side, strong, protective...Heero sighed, his mind strangely divided between envy and relief. Maybe Trowa and Duo getting together would be for the best, though he no longer thought he could be a judge of that. His score with matters of love was worse than abysmal. You'd probably have to use terms normally reserved for quantum physics or cosmology to properly describe his lack of grasp on the matter.

"Hey Heero. Happy birthday! Say...can we have a little chat? Just a matter of...useful information."

Heero nodded vaguely at Sally, glad for the distraction. Relena kept their collective birthday party small. So far, there was Dorothy, looking at him contemptuously and fiddling with a long, sharp cheese-knife near the buffet. Catherine, glowering at him with the usual dislike she showed any of Trowa's friends she didn't approve of, which happened to be all of them. Hilde, also glaring at him and apparently trying to find the other cheese knife - he didn't know what he'd done to her, but at this point he wouldn't be surprised to learn he'd done something horrible - and Sally, looking at him clinically. This was going to be a great party.

"Actually your house-mates suggested we have this talk. Now, we're friends but remember I'm also a doctor, so I hope you feel comfortable discussing this with me."

"I had a checkup last month." Heero said dully.

"Yes I know. It's something else we need to talk about. Sometimes...young people have questions. About their bodies."

"You approved my fitness and training program yourself." Heero put in absently as he noted Relena and Wufei returning. Relena headed towards the buffet with the firm step of someone who is going to have the exceptional glass of champagne for her birthday and do her best to get drunk on it. She didn't look happy either. How did I screw her life up again? Heero wondered, and started going over the past few weeks in his mind.

"...when two people love each other, whether they are men or women, it's only natural that sooner or later - but maybe later is better, after all, this is not something anyone should rush, right?"

"Hn." Heero felt his heart, an organ which had only ever bothered pumping blood about his body before, clench in a most unlikely and unhealthy manner as Quatre and Trowa walked in. He didn't know if he felt relieved or worried that Duo was not with them.

"...important to be comfortable with yourself, fully know yourself. I think experimentation can be valuable, within reason. I have some books with loads of useful information, you know."

"Good." Heero watched Trowa and Quatre go to the buffet table and pick up a plate, not looking very enthusiastic. Quatre hadn't even seemed all that keen to resume his fight with Dorothy. Hell, how'd I hurt him? Heero thought with a touch of panic. I didn't even try to set him up with anyone he knew about!

"...now of course, when it's two men, things are a bit different. I mean, nature needs a helping hand there, so that's why there are these tubes you can buy at any pharmacy..."

A clink of plate brought Heero's senses fully back to the room. Quatre had put down his moussaka with a frown of inward concentration, as if he were trying to hear something faint and far away. He leaned towards Trowa and they exchanged a few words, then left.

"...though of course when I say protection, pregnancy is not actually an issue, but its still important, right? Even in these days and ages, there are some diseases which should be avoided..."

Where was Duo? Heero nodded absently and toyed with his orange juice, trying to even out the ring mark on either side of the glass.

"...and this part you wouldn't want to rush because things could get painful otherwise..."

Wufei's phone rang. Heero noted how his friend's brow furrowed when he answered and listened. Relena, near enough to hear the voice on the receiver, paused with an olive half way to her mouth.

"...now the most important thing, right, when you decide on a position, is to find something you're both comfortable with..."

"What did he say?!" Relena dropped her olive. It rolled away unheeded. Wufei's eyes had gone wide and then they drifted over the room until they met Heero's. Then he looked away quickly. "Understood. We're on our way." He said shortly into the phone.

"...and I know this is hard, but I guess you have to forget yourself, in a way, forget your restraints and self-consciousness, right? It's best to concentrate on your lover's needs..."

Relena grabbed Wufei's arm and hauled him almost bodily towards the door. Heero caught the man's elbow in passing.

"...in finality it can be one of the most beautiful and significant thing two people can do togeth- Heero?" Sally, who had gone rather pink in the last few minutes, looked from him to Wufei in confusion.

"What is it, Chang?" Heero snapped, ignoring Sally.

Wufei turned towards him. His jaw was tight but otherwise he appeared quite calm. Very very calm. He freed his arm and then patted Heero's hand reassuringly.

"Nothing, Yuy, nothing. Everything's fine. Er, Relena and I have to go...take care of the birthday cake. You stay here and...guard the buffet." He turned on his heels and followed an impatient Relena out of the room.

There was a pregnant pause.

"Did that boy just ask you to guard the buffet?" Sally asked after awhile.

"Yes."

"Hmmm." Sally was looking at the door Wufei had slammed behind him with a professional glint in her eyes. "I think I'm going to have to have a word with Wufei, The tension of the past few months appears to have gotten to him..."

"Probably. I have to go, Sally." As for the buffet, it could damn well look after itself.

"Yes, I think you'd better, Heero. Oh, just a sec. About what we discussed. Is everything...okay?"

Heero glanced back at her. "It sounded correct, Sally. I didn't hear any obvious mistakes. Of course, if you really want to be sure of your facts, you might want to speak to someone who actually has some sexual experience. Talk to you later."

"Riiiiight." Sally said behind him. He thought he heard her grumble something about the last time she'd do anybody a favor, then she was bellowing to Cathy to not stand between her and the bar. Heero made a note to have someone - someone who was not him - look into Sally's personal life and see if her relationship could use some working on. The woman was obviously quite distracted by something.

[chap. 12] [chap. 14] [back to Maldoror's fic]