Marking it Down to Learning + Chapter 11 (cont)
Clearing Things Cryptic

"I'm sorry," he told her bluntly.

She stared, frowning, surprised by the admission.

"I shouldn't have left like that," he admitted. "It... wasn't the right thing to do. You shouldn't have done your part either, but... you didn't make me do anything. I chose to. So... I'm sorry," he finished awkwardly.

She smiled slowly at him. "It's all right," she assured him gently. "It all turned out ok."

He shrugged. "It might not have," he reasoned. "I was worried... " He trailed off.

She smiled, a touch wickedly. "About a baby?" she asked. He looked up, frowning at her when he heard the impishness in her tone. "I knew you were worried about that," she said gleefully. "I knew you were."

"I'm glad you had such fun with it," he muttered sourly. "I hacked your medical files for two years... "

Her laughter stopped him. "Two years?" she repeated. "What do you think I am, an elephant?"

His scowl deepened. "I just wanted to make sure... "

She sighed. "I've wished for five years I had gotten pregnant that night," she admitted quietly.

He gaped at her. This was his day of surprises. "I know it wouldn't have been good," she acknowledged. "But... I've still wished it."

"Thank God you didn't!" he blurted.

She laughed, and somehow the sudden tension her admission had created was gone. "Sensitivity... you really need to work on it," she mused.

He smiled. "It wouldn't have been good," he reminded her.

"No," she assented. She smiled at him, wistfully. "But we would have beautiful children," she sighed.

He stared at her for a moment, then reached up and cupped her cheek with one palm. "They'd have nice eyes," he agreed gently.

She smiled at him, her eyes misty.

"But... they'd be stubborn, rotten little brats," he continued, grinning again, "torn between a desire to promote Absolute Pacifism and to assassinate anyone in their way. They'd be schizophrenic, and we'd need to keep them under lock and key... "

"All right!" she interrupted, laughing. "Enough! You've made your point," she chuckled, shaking her head. "And you can ruin a moment like noone else," she added, glaring reprovingly at him.

He smiled at her, and somewhat awkwardly returned his attention to the screen.

"Heero?" she called. "How... how are you doing?" she asked him gently. "Are you all right?"

He shrugged. "I'm fine. We need to complete this mission, and to find Duo. I wrote a program... "

"I'm sure you did," she interrupted, "and I'm sure it's great." She paused. "But how are you? How do you feel? Are you all right?"

He frowned at her. "I'm fine," he repeated. "I... "

She shook her head. "Are you upset?" she asked directly.

He frowned again. "Of course I'm upset," he told her slowly.

She nodded. "About what happened with Duo?" she clarified.

He nodded.

"What else?" she pressed.

He stared blankly at her.

"What else are you upset about?" she pressed.

"I... " he shrugged. "Relena, I don't want... "

"Too bad," she interrupted briskly. "I told you I want to have your children," she pointed out, her cheeks pinkening again. "You can tell me about what's going on with your little menage a cinque."

Heero chortled at the phrase, and she rolled her eyes.

"Yeah, your 'menage a Sanc,'" she acknowledged sourly. "Ha ha."

He stared at her, surprised. "How did you know we call it that?" he demanded, bewildered.

She rolled her eyes again. "Heero, everyone who knows about it calls it that," she told him plainly. "You're not as clever as you all think you are," she added, a bit unnecessarily, in his opinion.

"Anyway," she pushed on, "what else is upsetting you?"

Heero sighed, and gave up. He told her about Trowa, about how he'd punched him, about his strange and disturbing sexual advance, about how he'd pushed him, and how Trowa had just left. "And he still hasn't spoken to me," he revealed unhappily. "I don't know... what to do. Quatre says he's still sorting things out... but I don't know what the hell he's sorting out. Quatre says he doesn't think he's going to leave us, and that there's still an us, but he's not talking to me, so I don't know. And Quatre and Wufei say that they want us all to be together still, but they want 'more.' And I don't know what 'more' they want... "

Relena was frowning. "Well, as for Trowa," she began slowly, "he's probably trying to sort out... how he feels about all of you knowing about his past."

Heero scowled at her. "What's there to sort out about that?" he demanded.

She scowled back. "If you just told everyone you cared about that you'd sold your body, and they all stared at you and let you not speak to them for a week, how would you feel?" she countered, equally acerbically.

"I wouldn't not talk to them for a week," Heero insisted. "I'd know it didn't matter, and... "

"How would you know that?" she pressed.

Heero glared. "I'd know them better - I'd know that they wouldn't care who I'd slept with... "

"But how?" Relena demanded. "How would you know that?"

"I'd just know!" Heero shouted.

"You would not!" she shouted back, disgusted. "Not unless they told you, which, it seems to me, you still haven't done!"

Heero opened his mouth to yell back at her, but couldn't think of anything to say, so after a moment he shut it again. She smirked triumphantly at him, and he snarled at her.

"You need to tell people those things, Heero," she instructed, her tone one that a person would use to talk to a mentally deficient child. "They can't read your mind. You have to tell them what you want them to know."

"They should know anyway," he insisted stubbornly.

She shook her head. "Did you know that they wanted you to be with them until they told you?" she prompted. "Of course you didn't," she answered for him. "Did you know I was still upset that you left that day until I just told you?" She shook her head. "People don't just know things," she finished softly. "You have to tell them."

Heero frowned, processing this new information. "So... I should tell Trowa that I don't care that he slept with all those people?" he ventured.

"Tell him it doesn't change the way you feel about him," she suggested.

He nodded slowly. "But what's the 'more?'" he continued, frustration apparent in his voice. As long as he was going to be getting unsolicited advice from Relena, he might as well clear up everything that was troubling him.

She sat back, considering. "Well... " she began, "what have you had together up to now?"

Heero shrugged impatiently, pushing himself up from his chair. He squeezed past Relena, pacing around the tiny office. "We've had... fun. We hang out. We... do stuff."

"Stuff?" she pressed, an amused smile on her face.

"Sex," he snapped. "We have sex. Lots and lots of sex. In different rooms. And positions. Want to hear about them? We... "

"All right!" she protested, lifting her hands in surrender. "Sorry!" She shook her head. "Pervert," she muttered under her breath. "Anyway... so you hang out and have fun and have sex," she summarized succinctly.

He nodded.

"And... "

He stared expectantly at her.

"That's it?" she asked finally.

"What... more should there be?" he asked, confused.

She sighed theatrically. "You are... the most clueless person... " she huffed.

"What?!" he shouted. "I never had fun before I was with them. I never had... " he stopped, eyeing her nervously. "The sex with them is... amazing," he said, trying to be sensitive. He guessed it wouldn't be right to say to Relena that he'd never had good sex before he was with them. "I like them. I'm... happy with them. I was never happy before," he admitted. "That's not enough?"

Relena sighed. "Maybe you need to tell them that," she suggested.

Heero groaned. Apparently he had to tell everyone he knew every single thing that should be glaringly obvious. Still, if that fixed all this... "So, that's it?" he asked hopefully. "That's the 'more?'"

"Probably not," she warned him. She thought for a minute. "How do you feel about them?" she asked.

"I told you, I'm happy... "

"No. About them," she corrected.

He scowled.

"Not how do you feel with them... how do you feel about them," she explained.

He thought for a minute. "I like them," he offered.

She raised an eyebrow. "That's it?" she demanded.

He grimaced. "I care about them?" he suggested.

She shook her head. "So, you feel the same way for them that you feel about me?" she summarized, her tone disbelieving.

"Well, no," he corrected slowly.

"You like me, don't you? You care about me?"

"Of course," he assured her. "Of course I do, Relena. But... "

"But you feel something more for them," she finished for him, smiling.

He scowled. "So that's the more?" he asked.

She nodded.

"Well, what the hell is it?" he demanded.

She stood up, smoothing her skirt. She crossed the room until she was standing in front of him, and leaned up and kissed him on the cheek.

"You have to figure that out yourself," she told him gently, and turned for the door.

"Relena!" he shouted after her.

She turned and raised an inquiring brow at him.

"You know what the more is," he accused narrowly.

She nodded, grinning at him.

"Why won't you tell me?" he appealed, hearing the plaintive note in his voice.

"You wouldn't believe me," she replied calmly.

He scowled. "This is more damn trouble than it's worth," he groused.

"Well... there's still me," she said lightly.

He looked up to make some snide comment, but the serious look on her face stopped him.

"There's still me," she repeated slowly, "but there won't be forever, Heero. There won't be for long," she accented, staring at him. "I... won't wait much longer."

"Relena," he murmured, staring at her, unsure of what to say.

She shook her head. "Not much longer," she repeated.

"Relena, I don't... I... "

"I know," she said, a touch sadly. She smiled. "Figure out your 'more,' Heero. If you need help... Well, I'll always be here for that."

"Thank you," he said simply.

She smiled. "Good-bye, Heero," she said, and came forward and kissed him on the cheek again. She turned and hurried toward the door.

"Relena!" he called after her. She turned to look at him, and he stared at her, feeling as though he should say something, but not sure what.

"Make me jealous," he managed finally, hoping that that was somewhere in the neighborhood of right.

Apparently it was, because she grinned widely at him. "Oh, I will," she assured him archly. "Don't you worry about that."

And she was gone. Bemused, Heero made his way back to his desk, and stared unseeingly at his computer screen.

Well, he knew a few things. Relena still wanted to have children with him, but was almost over her infatuation with him. He needed to tell people things, even when they should be readily apparent.

But this 'more... '

He still wasn't sure what that entailed. He wasn't.

He went back to work, Relena's mocking smile still lingering before his eyes.

She'd said he had to figure it out... but her manner had told him she thought he already knew.

He'd swear he didn't.

But...

He just wanted to be with the others. Just... be with them. That would be enough for him to be happy forever.

[part 10] [back] [part 12] [back to Shoori's fic]