by zillie
warnings: AU, OOC, Yaoi/Shonen Ai, and Zucchini
pairings: eventual 1+2, already gettin' it on the bushes 3+4.
notes: this might be the stupidest thing I have ever written. it might also be my favorite current work in progress. I have absolutely no idea what the point of this is, or where it's going--if you have any ideas, please please please let me know.

Having His Zucchini + Part 1

He'd only been in the school for one day and he was already ready to transfer already.

Oh, up until fifth period he'd been fine. Up until fifth period everything had been just peachy. Because in the first four periods he had spent as a student at Erin Bopp High School, he had made seven new friends, flirted with fourteen girls, and been invited to two parties. He had made three of his four teachers laugh, and the other one had smiled; he had come in third in the race they'd had in gym (he could have been first but that wasn't always the best way to make friends) and been asked if he was interested in joining the track team. Up until fifth period, everything about this new place was looking pretty good.

And then he'd walked into home ec. Introduced himself to the teacher. Smiled the smile that had gotten him through fourteen different schools by the time he'd started his sophomore year. "I'm Duo Maxwell," he said. "Transfer student. Sophomore. I think I'm in this class."

That wasn't even where the bad part had started; the teacher had smiled at him and welcomed him. "I'm Mrs. Oliphant," she had said, "and you're just what we needed."

He should have been warned by that sentence, but hell! She was seventy if she was a day, and looked sort of like Barbara Bush. How the hell would he have known to be scared?

Well, okay, the pearls might have tipped him off. . . .

Because then she had led him to the front of the room.

"Everyone," she said loudly, "this is our new student, Duo Maxwell. I hope you'll make him welcome."

The class had been distinctly unimpressed; they seemed, Duo noticed, to be fairly busy with. . . zucchini? Only these zucchini were wearing clothes.

That was when he started to worry.

"You're just in time," Mrs. Oliphant told him, smiling happily. "We're just staring our Family Education program. I've split the class into couples, and every couple gets a pretend budget, a pretend job, and a pretend baby."

That was when he started to wonder if she was batty.

"And we're so glad to have you, because we were one student short. And single parenthood, I assure you, is no fun at all. So your partner is that single father right over there."

That was when he started to stop breathing.

"Heero! Oh, Heero! You no longer have to be a single father!"

The woman looked positively angelic as she towed Duo over to where another boy was looking equally horrified. "Poor Heero was left out when we had the weddings yesterday," Mrs. Oliphant confided in a loud voice. "But we can have one today! Everyone! We get another wedding!"

"Um, Mrs. Oliphant?" Duo asked, his voice cracking. "You do realize that I'm a boy?" He looked desperately around the room, waiting for someone to notice the insanity of this. Most of the other students in the class seemed to be too busy writing notes, pushing back cuticles, or, in the case of one couple, making out to give a damn about him.

"Yes, of course, dear," she said with a twinkle. "It said so. On your files."

"And you do realize that homosexual marriage is illegal?" Duo said, feeling hoarse. "I mean, well. . . ," he trailed off.

"That's all right, dear," she said kindly. "We know that the illegality of homosexual marriage is only an outdated product of the patriarchy, and we're not going to let the patriarchy win, now are we?"

Duo, catching sight of a few, uh, interesting bumper stickers behind her, was wise enough not to answer that question. How, after all, could you argue with a woman who had the words "CASTRATE ALL RAPISTS," "NOTHING IN A MAN'S PANTS IS AS IMPORTANT AS WHAT'S IN A WOMAN'S MIND," and "I'M STRAIGHT BUT NOT NARROW" emblazoned on her walls?

"Great," Mrs. Oliphant sang out. "Heero, are you ready to get married?"

The boy stood up, and Duo turned pleading eyes to him. The other boy shrugged. "She's right. Single parenthood is hard."

And so, on his first day of school, Duo Maxwell found himself married to Heero Yuy, and the proud father of a bouncing baby zucchini.

+

"What the hell kind of name is that for a baby?" Duo asked. Heero pulled Hephzibah closer to his chest. "It's a good name. A solid name."

"It's the kind of name that's going to have all the other zucchini beating her up on the playground!" Duo argued. "They'll squash her!" He heard his words and laughed. "No pun intended."

"None taken."

Duo looked across the table at the boy he was having lunch with. "Sorry if I'm not amusing you." He looked around. "If any of your friends want to join us, that's all right with me."

"We have work to do," Heero said. "You need to find a job tonight."

Duo nodded.

"And tomorrow we can plan our budget. I had some preliminary figures that will be invalidated when we become a dual income family."

"I could be a stay at home zucchini-dad," Duo offered.

Heero regarded him levelly. "Right. Anyway, one of us will have to monitor Hephzibah at all times."

"It would help if you actually let me hold it once in a while," Duo pointed out. Then sighed at the look in Heero's eyes. "Or not."

"You may take her for a while after school," Heero said. "I have an extra lab session and the fumes would not be good for an infant."

"You're really taking this seriously, aren't you?" Duo asked, biting into a carrot.

Heero shifted Hephzibah a bit, as if to shield her from the sight of her daddy eating her cousin. "Home ec is a ridiculous course, and Mrs. Oliphant is a ridiculous teacher. However, it is required. I have no intention of letting it bring down my GPA."

Duo, whose GPA tended to rise and fall alarmingly, shrugged. "And you really think that if you're not the perfect daddy Mrs. Elephant will mark you down?"

"Mrs. Oliphant happens to be a woman who was abandoned by her husband. She raised five children single-handedly. She also happens to be an institution at this school. Even Dr. Winner-the principal-is afraid of her."

"I met Dr. Winner this morning. She didn't look like she was afraid of anyone," Duo commented, offering Heero a potato chip. The other boy refused, and went back to neatly eating his disgustingly healthy lunch.

"Mrs. Oliphant was her teacher," Heero told him. "Believe me. The woman has power."

"So basically you're afraid of the home ec teacher? Therefore you went along with marrying me and now you're going to raise a zucchini? All to protect your GPA?"

Heero nodded. "I started a college fund for her yesterday. I'll put your name on the account."

Duo shook his head and bit into another carrot.

+

After school, Duo collected Hephzibah from Heero and headed out to meet the track team.

"What kind of guy buys a diaper bag for a zucchini?" he mumbled, flipping through the notes that Heero had given him on Hephzibah's likes and dislikes. "Let's see. Likes-organic food. Uh-huh, sure. You were probably conceived in pesticides, and dedicated to the proposition that all zucchini are created for eating. Likes classical music. Right. Sure. Uh-huh. No. Likes to be read to in Japanese, preferably poetry.

Well. . . I guess I could put some of that DragonballZ crap of Jo's on for you. Likes the color yellow-did he copy this straight out of one of those 'how to make your baby as smart as possible' articles? Likes to sleep with her stuffed snail, Mortimer. Somebody should get this boy a baby name book. Right, Hep-cat?" He shifted the zucchini to his other arm and dug through the bag Heero had given him. A blanket. . . a diaper? Odd. A stuffed snail named Mortimer. Duo dug it out and examined it. It was sort of cute, in a lopsided sort of way. And it obviously wasn't new. Duo smiled at Mortimer. Mortimer half-smiled back: the end of his embroidered mouth was coming undone.

"Duo!"

Duo looked up, shoving Mortimer back into the embarrassingly cute bag as he did so. "Mr. Willis, hey!"

"Glad you could make it." He looked at the zucchini in Duo's hands and smiled. "I see you've got Mrs. Oliphant. I'll give you a tip-if you treat that zucchini right, Mrs. Oliphant will like you. If Mrs. Oliphant likes you, everybody likes you. And if you treat that zucchini wrong, well, let's just say that Mrs. Oliphant will know." He gestured to the bleachers at the side of the track. "Enough of our people have zucchini babies right now that we arranged for a babysitter."

"You paid for someone to watch zucchini?" Duo asked, wondering if the whole school was crazy.

"Nah. Detention. Hey, Quatre! We've got a new rugsquash for you!"

The blond sunning himself on the bleachers didn't even look up. "Oh, no, please. Not another one. If you give me one more I'll have to double the recipe for my zucchini bread, and that would just suck."

"Very funny," Willis said. "Now do your detention right or you'll do it again."

Quatre sat up, shading his eyes with his hand. "You don't find it completely stupid that my punishment for being late to class is having to sit and stare at zucchini? I wasn't that late."

"It was the third time this week, and it's only Wednesday," Willis replied. "You know the rules."

Quatre flopped back down. "The rules suck."

"You know the rules about language, too. I'm going to pretend I didn't hear that." He pushed Duo and Hephzibah forward. "I'd like you to meet Duo Maxwell, and his, uh-"

"Hephzibah. I think it's a girl," Duo offered.

"Right. I'll let you give Quatre instructions on dealing with, uh, Hephzibah. Just come on over when you're done."

Duo was left alone with the blond. "If it's any consolation I think it's ridiculous."

Quatre squinted at him, then languidly took the sunglasses from the top of his head and put them over his eyes. "You must be new here."

"Yeah. First day."

"That explains it. The entire rest of the school is zucchini crazy." Quatre sat up sharply. "The whole friggin' school, I tell you."

"So why are you out here thinking up zucchini recipes instead of carrying one around?"

"Oh, mine's here somewhere. Zippy. I've already given him a piercing," Quatre said with an evil grin, "which pretty much gave my partner a heart attack. But Relena just wanted to pair up with me because I'm pretty much the only one who can get away with 'independently wealthy' as a career choice. I'm a trust fund baby, and a spoiled brat. You can ask anyone. Add to that the fact that my sister is the principal here, and, well, half the school hates me and half wants to be my best friend."

"And you hate them all," Duo guessed.

Quatre shrugged. "Pretty much. Can't wait to get out of here."

"Me neither," Duo said glumly. "And I just got here today."

"You're trying out for track. You a joiner?"

Duo shrugged. "It beats doing nothing."

"Really? That's my favorite hobby." He looked around at the zucchini. "Though I am considering taking up baby-sitting. That or cooking." He lay back down again. "So what else do you do for fun, uh-Duo?"

"Duo. And not much." He set the bag down, pulling out the blanket and wrapping Hephzibah in it-despite the fact that it was unusually warm for April. Whatever. Zucchini was better cooked, after all. "I got invited to a few parties for this weekend. Any of them good?"

"Who invited you?"

"The only one that looked interesting was this girl named Hilde," Duo said. "She's in my second period class."

"Yeah? Mine, too."

"I didn't see you there."

"I was out having sex in the bushes," Quatre explained. "It somehow seemed more interesting than history."

"Were you really?" Duo said.

"Nah. But next time I do-I'll be sure to invite you along."

Duo felt his smile still.

"Oh, didn't I tell you? That's the other reason half the people around here hate me. I'm the token queer little rich boy." Quatre leaned over and shut Duo's mouth for him. "I'll look for you at Hilde's party."

Duo nodded, a little unsure of what to say, and backed away from the boy with the zucchini.

+

"Duo, track is a wonderful sport," Willis mused. "The sport of the gods."

Duo was pretty sure that gods didn't walk, let alone run cross country, but he didn't think Willis would appreciate the comment.

"I'd like you to meet our star runner. Trowa Barton, this is Duo Maxwell. He's new."

Trowa looked him over. "He's small."

Willis patted him on the back. "He'll grow." He smiled at Duo, and Duo smiled back, albeit a little sickly. "I'll let Trowa show you the ropes."

They watched him walk off; Duo turned to Trowa expectantly. The other boy shrugged. "Basically, you run. A lot. And try to keep an eye on your zucchini." He bent, stretching, and peered over at the dozen or so zucchini surrounding the recumbent Quatre. "I'm not sure that the babysitter is doing his job." He caught Duo's look of fear and grinned.

"I'm kidding. It's really too bad you had to show up during the Zucchini Project. The whole school goes crazy."

"I noticed," Duo said weakly. "Do you have a zucchini?"

"Yeah. My friend Cathy has it right now, though. So who's your partner?"

"Well. . . the numbers in the class were off. . . so. . . do you know Heero Yuy?"

Trowa stared at him. "You're kidding."

Duo shook his head. "Fraid not."

"Damn! That's so unfair! I have Ms. Gates for home ec and she wouldn't let my boyfriend and I be a couple!"

"Your boyfriend?" Duo repeated, wondering briefly where all his brilliant conversational skills had gone.

"Yep," Trowa said, jerking his thumb at the bleachers. "You didn't think I really kept looking over there to check on the zucchini, did you?"

+

After track Trowa and Quatre walked with Duo back to the school. Duo had Hephzibah under one arm; Quatre had Zippy riding in his gym shorts, which seemed to be intriguing Trowa to no end.

"So what do you guys know about Heero Yuy?" Duo asked.

Quatre and Trowa exchanged a look. "Not much," Quatre said. "He never goes to parties, doesn't do any sports, doesn't really talk much."

"He's really smart, though," Trowa said.

"Who does he hang out with?" Duo asked.

Quatre thought. "I don't really know-I usually see him alone."

"I'm married to a recluse?" Duo gasped in jest. "Me?"

"Maybe you can loosen him up a little," Quatre said, and grinned. "With or without a zucchini-your choice."

+

"Thanks for offering me a ride home," Duo offered as he and Hephzibah climbed aboard Quatre's motorcycle.

"I'm sure it'll be my pleasure," Quatre said with an exaggeratedly sexy wink. Duo grinned.

"Considering the way you kissed Trowa goodbye, I'm not buying it."

Quatre quirked an eyebrow. "You don't think the fag is going to hit on you, little boy?"

"Hey, I may be narrow, but who ever said I was straight?"

"You made a few blips on my gaydar-I wouldn't flirt with you otherwise. But," the other boy shrugged, "it's safer not to assume, you know?"

Duo knew. "Yeah," he said. "I know."

"So where do you live?"

"Do you know where Haley Church is?"

"Yeah."

"That's where I live."

Quatre eyed him quizzically, then turned and started the bike.

"STOP!"

Heero Yuy raced across the parking lot. "What the hell do you think you're doing?"

"Uh, going home," Duo said weakly.

"You were supposed to bring Hephzibah back to me when you were done," Heero said with a glare.

"I forgot. I'm sorry. I was taking good care of her," Duo promised.

"You were about to take her on a motorcycle without a helmet."

Duo blinked. "You want me to find a zucchini-sized motorcycle helmet?"

"No. I don't want her on a bike."

Quatre snickered.

"It's no joke," Heero said seriously. "Do you know how many babies die in auto safety accidents every year?"

"No, and I don't know how many zucchini do, either," Duo said. "I was being careful."

"He was," Quatre said, patting Zippy, who was strapped to his chest under his black leather jacket.

"I'll take Hephzibah. You just remember to find a job," Heero told Duo.

"Oh, we already found him one," Quatre piped up helpfully. "I'm going to be his sugar daddy. I'll take good care of him-you won't have to worry about money ever again. Unless your ass starts to sag," he told Duo thoughtfully. "You wouldn't be much of a trophy like that."

"My ass is never gonna sag," Duo replied. "I'm never gonna get old, and I'm gonna fuck like a god forever."

Heero clapped his hands over Hephzibah's ears. "I hardly think that sexual commerce is an acceptable occupation."

Duo shrugged. "You gotta go with your strengths."

"Seriously, though," Quatre said, "I've decided to hire him as Zippy and Zuzu's nanny."

"Zuzu?"

"Trowa's daughter is called Zuleika," Quatre explained. "She's the most beautiful zucchini in the world. If we hadn't already arranged her marriage to Zippy all the other zucchini would be drowning themselves for love of her."

"I see," Duo said. "Zuleika Zucchini Dobson."

Quatre flashed a smile. "You ain't so dumb after all."

"I suppose child care would be acceptable," Heero conceded. "As long as there's no sex involved."

"Nah. I prefer cucumbers, anyway," Duo said under his breath. Heero, thankfully, did not catch that. Quatre smiled at Japanese boy-he really could be quite innocent looking when he tried, Duo realized.

"I promise, Heero. No sex. His ass is all yours."

Heero Yuy took that opportunity to blush. He ignored Quatre and looked at Duo. "I thought maybe you should come over later." He held out a piece of paper. "I wrote down my address and phone number. We should discuss our budget."

Duo looked at him. Right then, sitting behind an openly gay boy on a really hot Harley, his easy camaraderie with Quatre and Trowa and all the other people he had met that day fresh in his mind, he felt sorry for Heero Yuy. Having no friends-that was something to horrible to even imagine. He felt regret for teasing him, and guilt for having been there for one day and already having more friends than Heero did. In short, he felt a surge of pity. "Yeah," he said. "We probably should. I'll call you later." He reached out and patted Hephzibah. "Bye, Hep-cat. I'll see you soon."

He was aware that Heero Yuy was watching him as Quatre sped from the parking lot.

He somehow didn't mind at all.

[part 2] [back to Zillie's fic]