NOTE: see part 1
for notes, warnings
+ Part 8
Upon returning to the mansion
that evening after his first day as a Preventer, Heero had a heavy load
on his mind. While his conversation had gone well, happily, it had also
left him equally troubled as he contemplated Duo's words about Relena.
Then, besides his personal life to consider, he also had his new responsibilities,
as he and his partner had been immediately thrown headfirst into the Lunar
Base investigation. Une had been more than satisfied that the former partners
had managed to mend their bridges over coffee that morning, and seeing
that they were getting on well once more, assigned them to begin their
It was during dinner, when they usually discussed whatever was going on
in the world or in their lives, that Relena suggested going out again,
to blow off some steam and relax after what had been a trying day for
both of them. She briefly mentioned the fact that she was aware of Heero's
first assignment, but it was the last thing that she wanted to concern
herself with at that moment, wanting instead to spend a few hours being
young and having fun, at least as much fun as she could, without appearing
immature, that is. With the world as her audience, there was only so much
that Relena was permitted to do in the public eye. Luckily, dancing at
a few of the elite, more private, clubs was one of them. After all, the
girl was only eighteen, and that was a fact that her mentors and aides
did acknowledge. As long as she carried herself in a professional manner
at all times, there was never a problem.
Relena was, herself, was dealing with the problem of the Lunar Base investigation
as well, after a long discussion with Sally, only from the political aspect
of it all. Her job, which may have been even more difficult than the actual
investigation itself, was to decide who, when, and how to tell about the
questionable issue, and all the while maintain absolute secrecy and calm
throughout the Earth nations. After commiserating over things with Sally
all afternoon, she took the woman's advice to remain quiet for the present
time, agreeing that it would be much safer for the investigation if she
After dinner, Heero met her in the main lobby of the large home, where
she was waiting and ready to go. His mind was still flooded with parts
of his conversation with Duo, wondering what the other young man meant
by "you'll know it if you like her," but he trusted his friend's
instinct. After all, Duo, by right, had been a "real person"
much longer than Heero had. So he decided to venture into the land of
the unknown called romance and allow his natural human senses to guide
him, as it was suggested would happen regardless, if he let his emotions
rule his heart and body. Heero deducted that this was as good a time as
any to start experimenting with whatever it was that Duo was talking about.
While he'd never given much thought before to having a girlfriend, the
idea did interest him somewhat; the thought of having a close companion
was starting to appeal to him more and more, the longer he wasn't J's
robot. Loneliness had always been one of the toughest battles to fight
over the years, and being close to someone, as foreign as it seemed at
first, was beginning to feel like it could be right, too. The question
remained, though. Who? Was Relena really that person? And if she was,
how would he know?
Now, if he only knew how to go about this game of chase without falling
on his face, Heero would have felt much more confident. Always the fearless
one though, he decided to jump in with both feet anyway, to see what would
happen. Simply knowing that Relena wanted to "get in his pants,"
as Duo had called it, made him more than a little nervous, but he moved
forward with the guts of a brave Gundam pilot under mind control --
willing to go where no Heero has gone before -- and see what became
of it all. He was sure of one thing, however. Based on the events of his
last quiet moments with the girl, tonight was sure to be interesting.
Relena took him to Jupiter, an upscale teen dance club where one could
get lost in the music, but not be too completely obvious to the masses
as it was a members-only club. She knew most of the people that frequented
the place too, many of them the teenage and young adult children of the
political set. Nodding and smiling as they made their way into the loud,
thumping club, Relena was cordial and collected as always, looking beautiful
in her shimmering, svelte mini dress that showed just enough leg to be
called stylish but not enough to cause a newspaper scandal the next day.
Heero, feeling extremely out of place in his dress slacks and shirt that
Relena helped him pick out, simply followed obediently behind his "date"
for the evening as she lead him inside.
The pair were immediately escorted to a private table in a more secluded
corner of one of the rooms, and the club's manager saw to their drinks
-- Cokes -- having them brought right over. Relena smiled
at the waitress and then at Heero, and settled into the booth seat, taking
a sip on her straw.
"You like?" The girl called out loudly to Heero over the loud
Heero looked around in amazement, then smiled a faint smile. "Loud!"
Relena laughed. "It's supposed to be loud! It's more fun that way!"
"WHAT?" Heero yelled.
"I said...it's more fun when it's loud!"
She giggled, taking another sip on her soda as the song changed. Strobe
lights began flashing all around the room as the dance floor filled. "Come
Relena slid herself out of the booth and grabbed Heero by the hand, dragging
him with her to the dance floor where she obviously expected him to dance
with her. As she began twisting and gyrating around him to the pumping
music, he looked on, his face red, feeling too embarrassed to even try
moving his body, since he had never danced before.
"Like this!" Relena took his two arms before her, then started
pushing and pulling them to the music until Heero finally got the idea
that she wanted him to move with her. He looked around to see what the
other guys were doing, and copied them, concentrating on the girl before
him and the rhythm of the pulsating music until he finally figured it
out and was randomly swaying and rocking and twisting right along with
Relena. A shy, unsure smile appeared on his face and she smiled back at
him. "See? Isn't this great?" Relena yelled out, but Heero couldn't
hear her. He cupped his ear with his hand to signal that he had no idea
what she had said, and she laughed and shrugged it off, concentrating
instead on having a good time.
By the time they returned to their corner booth to rest a while, they
were both covered in sweat and breathing heavily from the energy they
had exerted on the dance floor. Heero was smiling brightly, obviously
having a good time, and Relena seemed to be on cloud nine, watching him.
They ordered two more cold sodas, remaining for a while to catch their
When they did get up to dance again, Heero found himself in strange waters
when the music slowed and the strobes gave way to soft spots, and the
couples strewn across the floor began to get close for a slow dance. Smiling
shyly, he waited for Relena to approach him, as he knew she would, since
he once again didn't know what to do. He was looking for something internal
to guide him, the natural instinct that Duo had mentioned, but the only
thing that Heero noticed to be there were the flighty nerves in his stomach,
since his brain was already telling him that this slower dance was meant
to be something a little more intimate than the other dancing that they
had been doing.
Moving close into his personal space, Relena gently took Heero's arms
and draped them around her in the correct position, then drew herself
against the front of his body. Heero sucked in a deep breath, not having
been this close to anyone before except for the one embrace that he'd
allowed her that one afternoon in Relena's office, in his moment of weakness
"Like this," she said, her voice deep and sultry as she slid
her arms around him, then began guiding him in slow steps in an even slower
circle. "Don't be nervous, Heero. It's only me." Her fingers
fiddled with the hair at the nape of his neck, sending a tingling sensation
through his body, and Heero tightened against her.
Looking around again at the others on the floor, he realized that the
couples were all dancing that way, most of them even closer together than
he and Relena were, as the boys all draped their heads on the shoulders
of their dates, the girls all resting their heads on the chests of the
boys. Some of the pairs were even kissing as they made slow revolutions
on the dance floor, and when he turned back, Heero could see the dreamy
look in Relena's eyes. It occurred to him at that moment that Duo had
obviously been right, that Relena did have feelings for him, and he smiled
weakly, still not knowing how to feel about it all. Then with a deep,
satisfied sigh, she rested her head on his chest, squeezing him closer
Feeling completely awkward as he did, Heero gradually allowed his head
to drop so that his chin rested on top of her head, and he could smell
the sweet fragrance in her hair. His heart thumping from the nervousness
rushing through his body, Heero forced himself to stay calm as the two
slowly circled on the dance floor in time to the romantic music, his arms
holding the Foreign Minister tightly, the way he knew she wanted to be
held, but all the while thinking that he really wanted to let go. Whatever
this feeling was that he was experiencing, it certainly wasn't making
a hormone-crazed animal out of him, that was for sure, and Heero was almost
certain that his lack of response to her would be a disappointment for
By evening's end, Relena was as in love with the former Gundam pilot as
she had ever been, and he was equally confused. The closeness of the slow
dancing had obviously stirred something awake inside the girl, something
that Heero was not sure whether he was ready to face, yet he himself had
failed to find any need to continue their closeness. It wasn't that he
didn't want to be with her at all, or spend the evening with her...he
just didn't have the same reaction that she was obviously having, and
he chalked it up to beginner's nerves. She would understand, he reasoned,
since thus far Relena seemed to be able to understand everything that
he had been going through. She'd been a kind, patient teacher, and she
would know that he just wasn't ready for an intimate relationship with
her. She would understand.
They were riding in silence in the limousine back to the mansion, Relena
still swimming in good vibes from the club, when she turned to Heero,
her eyes filled with passion and admiration.
"Did you enjoy yourself this evening, Heero?" Her smile was
almost drunken with giddiness in spite of the fact that the only beverages
to be had all night were of the non-alcoholic variety.
"Yes, Relena, I did. Thank you."
She shifted around so she could face him better, and study his eyes. They
were wary, almost frightened, which she attributed to all the excitement
of the evening. Eyelashes fluttering seductively, Relena was so completely
attracted by Heero's scent, by his natural smell, that she thought her
body would combust right there in the back seat of the limo if she didn't
"Heero?" she asked, "Would you like to kiss me?"
He didn't answer immediately. Did he want to kiss her? It was a very loaded
question. Did he? He didn't know. He felt his sense of duty trying to
kick in, trying to tell him that he should kiss her, because she obviously
wanted him to kiss her, but somewhere beneath it all was the bugging feeling
that it all didn't feel right to him. That she wasn't the one, even though
she was beautiful and kind and smelled good. Heero fumbled his words for
a moment. "I...I suppose." Duty, once more, won out. With a
bright, hopeful smile on her face, Relena slid herself close beside him
and waited expectantly, her heart thumping with excitement as their eyes
met in the darkness of the car. Heero did nothing, only looked at her.
"Is...there something wrong?"
He blinked. "No. I'm sorry. I was just...thinking. Nothing's wrong."
Heero sighed. Then he leaned forward, as she had done the night they were
sitting on his bed, and touched his lips softly to hers. He breathed in
sharply as he did, smelling her sweet breath and guiding his arms to thread
loosely around her like he had seen the other boys in the club doing,
and as he did, his own heart pounded with what could only be described
His eye remained open as hers closed, she leaning deep into him, reaping
everything out of that one little kiss that she could, until something
stopped her. She pulled back and opened her eyes, looking uncomfortably
at Heero. For a little while, they said nothing as the car continued on,
the back screen up so that no one could see what was going on in the passenger
section of the limo. She lowered her eyes in recognition.
"You don't feel the same way about me, I gather." It was a statement
and not a question that Relena uttered in a hushed, disappointed voice.
"I-I don't know what I feel right now, Relena. It's too soon, I think.
I..." He stopped and looked away, knowing that he had hurt her feelings
somehow, even though he did nothing except what he thought she wanted
him to do. "I'm sorry, Relena."
The girl smirked, then sat back against the leather upholstery. "It's
OK, Heero. I should be the sorry one. Rushing you into something like
that. It's just that..."
"Duo told me that you've felt this way about me for a long time."
Although he couldn't see it, Relena's cheeks turned so red that heat radiated
off them. She tried to hide her surprise with a chuckle. "He did,
did he? Well, I guess nothing gets past Duo, then, that wise guy."
In the pit if her stomach, a knot was forming as she suddenly felt like
a complete fool, having pined over Heero for as long as she'd known him,
over three years.
Heero sighed. "He told me something else that I didn't understand,
until tonight, that is."
"What did he tell you?" She was almost afraid to hear Heero's
"He said that when I find the right person, I'll know it. That it's
human nature to know it automatically."
Relena pondered Duo's advice momentarily. "Well, I suppose he's partially
right. It happens. Not always, but it happens."
"How do you know that I'm the right person for you, Relena?"
She laughed again, her blush returning. "Don't make me explain this
He smiled a little smile at her, flashing his eyes, the very eyes that
had always mesmerized her, and she couldn't deny him what he asked.
"Oh...alright. This is really embarrassing, you know, but I think
that's a part of it."
"Well, sort of. It's like this feeling that no matter what you say
or do, you feel a little embarrassed in front of 'that person,' because
all you want is for everything to be perfect. Everything you say, everything
you do. And this feeling inside that...I don't quite know how to explain.
But I know, I know because when I am around you, Heero, my heart leaps
and jumps and gets all fluttery, and there's this feeling right here,"
she put her fingers on her stomach just below her ribcage, "that
gets all queasy. And here," her fingers moved to over the center
of her chest, "gets all funny-feeling too." Relena laughed.
"You can't really describe it -- it's something that has to
be felt to be understood."
"Like Duo said."
"Yeah, I guess. Like Duo said."
They were quiet again while Heero's mind raced and Relena tried to guess
what he was thinking.
"You feel all that when we're together?" Heero asked.
She nodded, barely noticeably, then turned away. "I guess you...don't,
do you?" Her tone was flat and disappointed.
He did not answer her.
"It's OK, Heero. You don't have to feel bad about it. I mean, there's
a whole world of people out there for both of us. I'm sure everything
will work out for us the way it's supposed to."
He looked up. "You aren't angry at me?"
"How can I be angry? I'm sad, if that's what you mean, but how can
I try to make you feel for me when you don't? That would be ludicrous."
Heero breathed a relaxed sigh, letting it out slowly so as not to make
the girl feel too self-conscious at his relief. "I appreciate that,
She smiled. "Just promise you'll stay my friend at least?"
Heero smiled back.
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