Fix me Now

by Talya Firedancer

A slender body arches in a tight bow of flesh, each muscle making the lean, defined frame a rigid sculpture. A long, knotted rope of blood-caked brown hair snakes along the curve of one arm, tip fluttering in the air. This body is falling, plummeting through empty space.

[Things don't have to be this way
catch me on a better day]

Like a broken refrain, it flashes in his mind, shaming him with the replay.

"I DON'T love you, Duo."

A cracked windshield, the face of his lover peering out at him, bloodstained with his blue-violet eyes burning blanks into him.

Duo... I lied...

Death didn't give second chances.

Duo's face was serene, even to the point of a vague smile. But his eyes looked past Heero, who shouted, eyes wide, tears he was completely unaware of marking his cheeks as he tried to take back the harsh lie.

But Duo would have given him a second chance... and Duo was Death... Heero laughs, the crazy sound echoing around the cockpit of Wing Gundam as he gathers himself for a final strike, then a self-destruct that will flatten his attackers in its shockwave.

The laugh seems to double in size, Duo's kind of crazy maniacal laughter, ringing in his ears.

I'm dying... I must be dying... why else...

Heero's eyes snap open to their widest limits. I can hear him!

The line of Leos crumples under a blazing arc of green thermal blade, then they explode in showering sparks.

Death approaches...

[Bury me above the clouds
all the way from here]

Heero's face was empty as the four pilots, minus Shinigami, pushed the thrusters screaming to their limits as they raced away from the battlefield. As a white-out explosion lit up the scopes, the brown-haired boy closed his eyes briefly. The gray clouds engulf the four remaining gundams in an embrace of cold loose mist.

A close view of a gundam cockpit pulls back slowly to reveal blinking lights, most of them red, and a blood-spattered control panel. A broken golden chain is draped limply over the control stick. The windshield is cracked, and across the surface ripples fast-moving clouds as the pilot pushes his battered vehicle even harder, cursing softly. The sound is roughened with a burr of pain, and overshadowed by the insistent alarm resounding in the cockpit, which he ignores.

Heero's face projected on the thick clear heavy glass of his cockpit was shimmered over with clouds. His eyes were dead and empty as he prepareed to fight. As the trap closed around him, he realized he was going to die... yet the only thought that came to him is not despair, but a brown-haired specter of Death... and a single tear glittered. He does not know what it is.

[take away the things I need
take away my fear]

Heero's face is calm as he watches the battered specter of Death before him. Shinigami is almost in pieces, but the thermal blade is still intact and, as proven, still deadly. There is no need, anymore, for the mask that had overtaken his life... a small, almost delighted smile plays over his lips.

"Duo," he utters.

So, I am dead... or now, I am alive.

Heero, gently stroking the long mass of shining unbound honey-brown hair, his eyes puzzled but wondering... strangely soft. Duo is face-down and soundly asleep, one round cheek nuzzling into the pillow.

Heero, leaping to intercept the tumbling body of the ragged black-clad figure as it pitches from Shinigami's cockpit.

Heero, his face white with shock. "Duo. Duo... Duo... " he repeats over and over, unable to say anything more than the sum of his emotions as he clutches the violet-eyed boy to his chest, amazed... real, he is impossibly real, and alive.

He is alive.

[hide me in a hollow sound
happy evermore
everything I had to give, I gave up long before]

Heero's face was cold and grim as the other pilots discussed a memorial for the pilot of Shinigami. Duo Maxwell. Dead. Not even pieces of his gundam had been retrieved from the site. He folded his arms and turned away, no longer listening. His sound has shut off. He could only hear the rush of blood in his temples, accompanied by Duo's dying words.

Heero's pained eyes fixed on the teddy bear, half-buried in rubble. Her stuffed toy. All he can hear is a happy little girl's voice. "Are you lost, older brother?"

"I've been lost all my life."

He picked up the puppy dog... her puppy... and cradled it in his arms, eyes emptying of their light. He has killed... an innocent.

Duo's shocked, betrayed expression.

"I DON'T love you," he replied, needing the distance, the objectivity for his edge. He has given everything else... why should love be any different?

He reached shaking fingers to the surface of the cockpit, vainly seeking to touch the bloodied hand, the gleaming crucifix, as everything was limned in a white-out flare. His life...

[fix me now
I wish you would
bring me back to life]

A slender body arches in a tight bow of flesh, each muscle making the lean, defined frame a rigid sculpture. A long, knotted rope of blood-caked brown hair snakes along the curve of one arm, tip fluttering in the air. This body is falling, plummeting through empty space.

A stony, taut face locked in an expression of determination crowns the lean shape that leaps to intercept the plummeting boy.

Heero's face is calm, at peace, for the first time in weeks... years... a lifetime. Duo looks pained even deeply unconscious but Heero is infinitely gentle as he cleans every scrape, gash, contusion, sets the broken bones, unrolls gauze to bandage cleaned wounds.

He does not yet know how it was possible. Duo sleeps, still. He brushes fingers over the long hair, combing and untangling it himself with infinite patience, and Duo rouses a little, arching into the caress with a sleepy mumble.

Again his mind flashes over the incredulous sight of Shinigami breaking through the line of Leos, slashing the closing jaws of the trap wide open, and his hand drifts to the silver crucifix around his neck, hidden under the tank top.

Miracles have their price.

[kiss me blind
somebody should
from hollow into light]

Duo rouses. It is dark outside; he can barely make out the sprawled figure next to him, tousled dark hair falling in his face. A wide smile breaks over Duo's features, and he touches Heero gently, shaking him.

Heero sits bolt upright, his face set in its usual closed, cold expression, and Duo's happy smile withers. Then Heero's eyes widen, registering Duo's presence. He reaches out to touch Duo's shoulder, hesitant. Then, shoulders quaking, he gathers the braided pilot into his arms, hands running over his back, his arms, the endless fall of his brown hair, stroking over the solid, vitally alive flesh. Inhaling his scent. Murmuring his name in a surprised, softened tone.

"Duo... Duo... you're the only one... the only... " His voice breaks.

Duo's eyes are wide and trembling, the moonlight concentrated into his pupils, then his shoulders start to shake, too, as he clutches fiercely at Heero.

Duo is the one to pull back first, smiling as always, and Heero's face is almost pained, raw, intense, but very much alive. He swipes thick brown hair out of the Wing Gundam pilot's eyes and kisses him. Heero kisses him back instantly, urgently, consuming him so hungrily Duo makes a noise of protest at first, then gives up and slides his arms tighter around Heero's waist.

The moonlight plays havoc with Duo's heart-shaped features as he leans back on the bed, smiling hopefully at Heero. The brown-haired pilot hesitates, then kisses him briefly on the lips. His hand cups at Duo's groin, who closes his eyes and arches into the erotically direct caress, then both hands are tugging at his pants. Duo's eyes pop open wide as Heero begins to go down on him for the first time, then a thick sigh escapes his lips.

[things don't have to be this way
catch me on a better day]

Relena is waiting impatiently by a phone booth. Once again, she has tried to chase down Heero, and found only dead ends and misdirection. But this time she thinks she has found him.

"It was all wrong, last time... " Relena says to herself, fingers groping in her pocket for a silken token. "I can forgive him... Duo is dead... but he is mine, he has always been mine." She frowns, thinking of when she found a groggy, disoriented boy in a deep-space suit washed ashore. She did find him first, after all.

She just knew that it could be better, if only Heero gave her the chance again.

[Only one way down from here
Pick me off the floor]

Heero steps out of a car that has suddenly pulled to a stop on the opposite side of the street. Relena's face lights up, ecstatic. He came. He must care somewhat, or he wouldn't have come.

As he steps onto the sidewalk, he raises his eyebrows in question, but says nothing.

Relena falters. "Umm... what happened last time... " She blushes

"Was a mistake," Heero completes for her, his voice flat.

Relena nods firmly. "You're right, it was a mistake. But I can forgive you for it -- I know you must have been close to him -- but... well, he's dead." She turns a bit crimson again, but plows on determinedly. "So, you and I... "

Heero's eyebrows raise further. "There is no you and me."

[take away the things I dream
one time, one place, one more... ]

Relena stumbles. "Ex--excuse me?" She must not have heard him right.

"I said, there is no 'you and me,' Relena-sama." The honorific seems mocking, in his mouth. "I don't belong to you. There's only one person that I can ever belong to."

"But he's dead!" Relena bursts out, furious. "How can he continue to be anything to you? I need you! I need... "

"What you need, I can't give you," Heero says curtly, his eyes hardening. He turns away.

Relena stares after him in shock. Then, defensively, she becomes angry. How dare he? First, to have to poor taste to call out someone else's name during -- during, well... and a boy's name -- even worse! But to cling to that dead boy's memory as an only love... it was absurd! Relena shakes with fury.

As the car circles in a U-turn, it speeds down the street past her, and she rocks in the wake of its passage. She narrows her eyes. For a moment... it seemed... almost as if there was a passenger, with long, long brown hair...

[fix me now
I wish you would
bring me back to life]

Duo sits wincing melodramatically as Heero peels away layers of gauze, his brow fixed in a frown of concentration. Then he grabs Heero's wrist, his hand full of only slightly-bloodied wrappings, and drags him closer for a kiss.

The Wing Gundam pilot resumes changing the bandage, but his eyes are softer.

"Duo... how... "

He sees the slender body falling again, arched into a perfect swan dive, falling from the cockpit as warning alarms spring from Shinigami's broken cockpit. Broken, but somehow still intact enough to come to his aid -- after being presumed dead.

"Duo... we had a memorial for you... "

Duo just grins cheerfully.

"Hey, I'm flattered! You four must be a bunch of sentimental saps under there, somewhere, ne?"

Heero finishes tying the fresh bandage, then pulls him into his arms for a rough hug, blue eyes burning with traces of some unnameable substance.

"Duo... I... "

[kiss me blind time after time
take away my doubt]

He pushes stray strands of chestnut-brown hair, threaded with gold, away from the roundly-smiling face, and kisses him softly at first. They gasp against each other, lips working, holding tightly to something almost lost, but never again. Heero pushes Duo's mouth open, applies his own with bruising force, and their tongues lock, embraced and grasping together as their bodies do.

"I... love... "