Well, I finally got done with it! Here is the promised sequel/companion fic to my really short poem thingy 'I Wish I Could Cry'. I would like to dedicate this to all the nice people who replied to the first one. Especially to Bronze Tigress, who is one of the people that makes this list so much better than any other I've ever been on. That said, on with the fic!
Warnings: Touch of angst, Fluff and rampant Sap. (I can't resist a happy ending.)
Pairings: 5+2
Disclaimer: Don't own 'em and you know it, please don't sue me, I'm broke.
Authors note: OK I know it's not Pulitzer material but I definantly think it's better than the first one, at least it's longer. I didn't get to have it beta'd but I checked it myself so it shouldn't be to bad. Please be gentle with your replies mm 'k? I was trying to get it out in time for the anniversary but my dad the computer Nazi was online and so it's a little late, forgive me?
By: Euphemia

Only I See The Real You

/Something is wrong with Maxwell/

That was the thought currently running circles through the mind of Chang Wufei.

He sat in a conveniently placed chair in the living room of the latest safe-house, obstentiosly reading a book, but in reality watching the object of his recent thoughts stare out the window with a decidedly uncharacteristic melancholy look on his elfin face. Wufei tried to tell himself that it was just normal concern for his comrade-in-arms that caused him to spend all his free time -- and admittedly a good deal of his not so free time -- observing Duo Maxwell and cataloging his various moods and expressions.

It could not possibly be that as he was just beginning to realize, he had a serious crush on the boy. He didn't think any of the others had caught him in his 'Maxwell Watching', but he also didn't think anyone else had taken the time to notice the fact that was plain as day to someone like Wufei, who had watched him so often.

The fact that Duo Maxwell was much more than the joking front that he put on for the benefit of the team.

And the fact that right now Duo Maxwell was hurting. He couldn't put his finger on exactly what it was that tipped him off.

Duo still ate the same food, was still just as cranky until after his first cup of coffee, and he still managed to light up every room he walked into. There was nothing he could single out, but he knew something was up.

He really didn't want to focus on the fact that the most obvious reason for him to notice the change was that he had more than a simple crush on Duo, that he was beginning to feel the first stirrings of love. That option was simply not possible.

They were in the middle of a war, neither one of them needed that kind of attachment, besides Maxwell was a BOY and Wufei was straight!

At least he thought he was. He really didn't have much experience to go on, after all.

He'd been married to a girl, but it was hard to go by that. It had, after all, been an arranged marriage and he and Meiran had never really gotten along. That was really all the experience he had to work from. His life had been full of nothing but books up until Meiran, and after he lost her his life was taken up with her quest for justice, the quest he made his own in her honor.

//Face it, you never felt for Meiran the things you feel for him// came a very familiar, very annoying inner voice.

/Oh just shup up/ He thought to himself.

//Why don't you just face the fact that you feel something for him and go see what is wrong with him?// Again came that snide inner voice. It always seemed to pop up with some comment whenever he was contemplating Duo.

/Shut up/ "Just shut up!"

//Great now you're arguing with yourself//, came the voice, just as Wufei heard "'Fei, you alright?" He looked up quickly, realizing that he had said at least part of the latest argument with himself out loud, and now Duo was giving him an incredibly strange look from his place by the window.

"Sorry I just got caught up in my book. Some crazy onna is on a rant, I guess I got carried away." came his too quick reply. /He is never going to buy that! I can't believe I just came up with such a lame excuse! So much for the brilliant scholar./ He mentally berated himself.

Duo however,just gave him a small almost-smile and turned back to look out the window.

/Now I know something serious is wrong. Duo would never give up so easily./

//So go find out what's bothering him!// The voice he was quickly beginning to hate intruded again, but by this point he was truly curious and its urging was almost unnecessary. Besides, it was painfully obvious that the voice was not going to leave him alone until he found out what the problem was.

"Fine," he muttered under his breath as he carefully laid his book aside and crossed the room to quietly settle beside Duo on the window sill.

He just sat easily beside him for a few minutes, until the silence and the itch to know got the best of him and he decided to get to the bottom of the walking puzzle know as Duo Maxwell (1).

He chose to take the direct approach, as was his nature, so he turned to Duo and said, "I want to know what's bothering you."

Duo jumped slightly at the breaking of his quiet contemplation was broken, then turned to face Wufei before just-a-little-too-quickly replying, "Watcha' talking about 'Fei? Nothing's wrong. I'm just enjoying the scenery. You know it's not often we get to really see the places we stay at."

/It's true, we usually move around so quickly that we don't get to 'stop and smell the roses' so to speak, but still he is definantly hiding something, I can feel it./

Wufei came to a decision. Duo needed to hear the truth right now more than anything else. He also needed to know that someone cared about the way he felt, and he had a right to know that Wufei had been watching him. //About damn time.// Piped up the hated voice. He gathered his courage and began, "Duo, I know you never lie, but only telling part of the truth is just as bad and you know it." As he took in Duo's now slack jaw and and eyes that had grown to nearly inhuman proportions, he almost re-thought his decision but no, now was no time to back out, he owed Duo the truth.

Taking a beep breath he continued with his confession. "Duo I've been watching you for some time now and I know that there is more to you than the mask you wear for the good of everyone else. You try to be their light in a dark world, but right now I'm worried about you. "

Duo had stared at him with that fish-out-of-water look on his face for the length of his speech but slowly his features settled back into their normal cheerful grin and devilish glint to wide violet eyes.

"'Fei you don't need to worry about me, I'm just fine, and besides I like being able to make everyones day a little brighter. God knows they have enough for twice as many people to worry about, and they're not even old enough to drive legally!" was his reply as he went back to staring out the window, clearly hoping Wufei would drop the subject.

/No way. I'm not going to let him get away with it/. Wufei thought to himself and, decision made, he gently caught Duo by the chin and pulled him around to face him once more.

"Duo you're not hearing what I'm saying. You don't have to pretend for me. I see the real you. I can tell that you're hurting, let me help. I'm worried about the boy under the mask." Having said that he leaned in to place a gentle, chaste kiss on Duo's now trembling lips.

He started as he realized that tears were slowly making their way down Duo's milk white cheeks.

"What's wrong! Duo I'm so sorry, I shouldn't have done it, I -- " he was cut off in his apology by the feel of strong arms twining around his waist and a head full of chestnut hair suddenly appearing on his chest.

"Shh 'Fei, please don't apologize. I'm not crying because I'm upset, I promise. I'm crying because I'm so happy! You wanted to know what was wrong with me and I didn't want to tell you because, well, to be perfectly honest, I was feeling sorry for myself and maybe a little lonely. Then along you come and tell me exactly what I need to hear. I'm crying because I never thought anyone would care enough about me to even realize there was a mask, let alone see through it to the real me. Thank you 'Fei, just -- thank you!"

During his speech Duo had lifted his head off of Wufei's chest -- his arms however were still securely wrapped around Wufei's waist -- and he was now looking Wufei straight in the eyes.

Wufei looked at Duo, took in his tear bright eyes and happy glow of his face and realized that war be damned he was in love with this boy, and never again would he let him think nobody cared about him. He would dedicate his life to making sure of that.

Decision made he leaned in for a second gentle kiss.

~~OWARI~~

(1) Not like that you hentais!

[back to Singles a - k]