Author: Ravengirl
Rating: NC-17
Parings: 2x2, 1x2x5
Warnings & Disclaimer: see 1st chapter

Whiteout + Chapter 2

Heero:

I studied his reflection in my computer screen as he wriggled around on the mattress, trying to find a comfortable spot.

The beds in that house were as antiquated as the rest of it: massive frames of oak and cherry, lavishly carved posts and headboards and the occasional half-rotted canopy. We'd all chosen rooms without those moldering, glorified dustcovers but that didn't make sleeping any more comfortable an occupation. Succinctly, the accommodations sucked.

The mattresses were hard enough to qualify as petrified wood, moths had had a field-day with the blankets, and clouds of dust rose from musty pillows with the slightest breath of air. The place's only saving graces were functional central heating and an off-grid power generator. I suppose the resistance didn't want us freezing to death, even if we weren't getting any rest to speak of.

Duo finally sat up, cross-legged, obviously having chucked comfort into the lost-cause bin. Reaching over to the bed-side table, he grabbed my brush and began the Herculean task of untangling his wet hair.

I stared, fascinated. It's very rare to see Maxwell with his hair down. And I don't think he'd ever brushed it out in front of me. I'd have remembered that. There's something about that waterfall of chestnut that draws me. His hair is the envy of almost every female he meets. Long, thick and silky, it is what they try to achieve with any number of expensive salons and conditioners, but never do. All he does is wash and brush.

His braid has raised accusations of vanity many times, mostly from Chang, but I don't believe his ego has anything to do with it. He really doesn't do more than make sure it's clean and neatly tied back. Once, he told me that it held his memories within it, both good and bad. I asked him if they were something he wanted to keep. He said that wanting had nothing to do with it.

"Hey Heeee-ro. Whatcha writin' tonight? No mission, so no report. Why doncha see if we can get a vid up and running on that fancy toy of yours?"

His voice -- full of the sing-song inflections he uses to annoy me -- brought me out of the daze his hair had reduced me to. Sometime during my ruminations, he'd finished brushing and it hung about him in shining waves of brown-red-gold. Now if only he'd stay put and shut up, I might be able to enjoy having him in my room.

No such luck.

"C'mon man, snap out of it! I'm bored!"

That notorious phrase and its accompanying whine brought home the day's frustrations and I abruptly recalled my half-formed plan to achieve some peace and quiet. It was looking more attractive by the nanosecond.

Deliberately removing my fingers from the keyboard, I turned in my seat to look directly at him.

"You always say that and then proceed to annoy the rest of us until you get a mission. What is it you expect us to do about your ADD problem? The correct medication would work wonders... or so I've read."

He appeared startled at first, but Maxwell's recovery time is nearly instantaneous. A grin curved his mouth, his eyes glittered wickedly at me and my spandex started to feel somewhat tighter than usual. A beautiful, mischievous demon had perched on my bed, and was now plotting his next prank.

"Weeeellll, Hee-man, since you ask... I want you to entertain me." His lids lowered to half-mast and the imp was suddenly gone, replaced by a sultry-voiced sex-object. "You're a smart boy... surely you can think of something I might like."

My throat tightened up alongside my crotch. I swallowed hard, mouth dry as dust. Entertain him? Probably not. But what I was thinking right now would sure amuse the hell out of me.

Duo:

I had to wonder what could possibly be going on behind those deep-ocean eyes to make them gleam like that. The only time I'd seen anything approximating their disturbing expression was right before Spandex-boy got medieval all over some Taurus ass with the ol' beam cannon.

Oh, and maybe right after that when he does his maniacal-laugh-thing. There's something so not right about that sound. Freaks me out every time, and I'm the freakin' God of Death!

I'd seen him staring at me in the computer screen's reflective surface while I was brushing my hair, too. Score! Well, why else would I be doing it in here? And with his so-called brush. Damn, he needs to replace that sucker. I swear, half the bristles are broken or missing.

When he rose fluidly from his chair, I jumped. Heero Yuy does not, I repeat, does not respond to threats, ultimatums or goading. It's part of his creed, I think. But -- oh shit -- it seemed he was about to round-file that particular addendum, 'cause he was comin' right at me and the look in his cobalt gaze was not exactly what I'd call friendly.

In fact, it didn't even register on the scale of human emotion, as far as I could tell.

So I did the only thing I could under the circumstances; as an involuntary "Eeep!" escaped me, I dove for the covers, pulling them over my head.

Wufei:

The great room shook. The lights flickered. A wave of plaster particles drifted down over my head. Tilting my chin, I stared at the still-quaking ceiling in disbelief.

Great gods. What has that idiot done this time?

I didn't even question the source. Between a Maxwellian catastrophe and an act of God... well, let's just say the braided baka would triumph nine times out of ten for disaster points.

But then a distinctive voice rose in a quickly-muffled shout, and I frowned. That was Duo. No one else can achieve quite that decibel range. Which meant...Yuy probably decided he'd had enough and had done something about 'problem Shinigami'.

This I had to see.

Curiosity gnawing a hole in my cranium, I shoved myself up from the Regency torture-device -- otherwise know as an armchair -- I presently occupied and dropped Wells' 'Time Machine' on a half-moon table as I passed through the doorway.

I mounted the stairs cautiously... not trying to disguise my footfalls, but not announcing my presence, either. Startling either of my housemates could easily be classified as suicidal behavior. Besides being the best pilots in our group, Yuy and Maxwell are both peerless assassins with lightning reflexes and hair-trigger reactions. I had no desire to be on the other end of one of those reactions.

Pausing for a moment on the second story landing, I inspected the wide corridor. Light pooled temptingly from two open doors, one of them Yuy's. Deciding that was probably my best bet, I strolled towards the brightly lit frame and peered in.

I don't know what I thought I'd see... or if I had any expectations at all besides a chastened Maxwell and a thoroughly annoyed Yuy. The sight that met my eyes was something I would never have imagined in a thousand years, given the participants of the tableau... but it's one I'll remember to the end of my days.

Beautiful.

That was the only thought my bemused mind was capable of processing. And considering that its subjects were my colleagues -- and male into the bargain -- I couldn't have been more shocked if Treize Kushrenada had suddenly appeared, dressed in a neon pink tutu and dancing the can-can.

Duo Maxwell was spread-eagled across the bed, laid-out like the nubile sacrifice of a decadent elder-god, nothing but the shining cloak of his hair to hide his creamy flesh.

His wrists were bound together with thick silver cords and attached to the headboard behind him -- his ankles secured by the same rope to the bed's carved posts. And straddling his hips -- olive-drab tank gone and biker shorts clinging to lean muscle -- was Wing's pilot.

It was a classic golden section... a photographer or painter's dream of balanced perfection. They only touched at a single point, where one of Yuy's hands gripped Maxwell's bound wrists. There was no give to the line; it held 'Scythe's pilot in a graceful arch, his body displayed to advantage, and I suddenly realized the reason for the aborted yell. He was gagged... not cruelly, but quite effectively.

Yuy knows his business, a little voice sniggered somewhere within my dazed consciousness. Ah, silence... what an unexpected pleasure. To say nothing of the view...

They presented a gorgeous set of contrasting similarities. Duo's pale skin against Yuy's dusky gold, both smooth yet scarred in places... the dark chocolate spikes of Heero's hair blending with that spill of silken flame, so different in color but of like texture.

I'm not sure how long I would have stood there, mesmerized by their beauty, but Maxwell was facing the door and wildly-dilated amaranth eyes suddenly met mine. Yuy noticed the direction of his gaze immediately and whipped around, Sig appearing from nowhere.

His shoulders relaxed infinitesimally when he recognized me and those thick brows veed in displeasure.

"Chang." The Sig vanished back from whence it had come. "I'm busy."

His curt tone released me from the mute spell that had seized my vocal chords. Busy? I'll say!

"Yuy..." I croaked, barely recognizing my own voice. "What in the nine hells is going on here?!"

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