title: Ice
fandom: Gundam Wing
characters/pairings: Heero/Duo, Trowa, Quatre, Wu Fei
rating: G
warnings: angst
summary: Heero contemplates Duo.
notes: this is for Lethanon, for her birthday. squee!! she asked for 'tragic' hero/duo. and for her birthday, she wrote me a fic. heh. it's Meadowsweet, and it's better than this fic. so. um. go read. ^_~
required listening: Ice, Sarah McLachlan, from Fumbling Toward Ecstasy. it is in music what this fic tries to be in words.

The sheets were cold under his fingers. The moonlight froze the exposed cotton, sending goose bumps up Heero's skin. He didn't wake up so much as he became aware. Not that he didn't already know; he did. Proof was extraneous.

The window was far away from him. Only six feet, at most, but Duo was miles away. His face was turned away from him, his shoulders hunched to hide himself from Heero's sleeping gaze. Or maybe to hide Heero from his gaze. Heero didn't know what was going on inside Duo's head anymore.

His hair came down in dark waves, curtaining him. There wasn't a single tangle in Duo's hair, not ever. The hairbrush on the bed stand had as much hair in it as Duo had on his head. The ends of his hair were ragged and uneven. Heero had cut it for Duo once, leaving a straight, perfect edge, but Duo didn't like it much.

The stereo was still on. Heero didn't recognize the song. Duo liked to sync the stereo up to his computer, and play net radio over the speakers. He knew of every station there was out there, and he rotated through the different schedules. Heero doubted there was even a single song that Duo didn't know.

He would have gotten up to stand behind Duo, but it was cold outside the bed, and he was cold inside the bed, and Duo was frigid. Selfishly, Heero didn't want to waste any of his heat on his lover.

Everyone saw it. Everyone watched them. Quatre had pulled him aside and grilled him. He had watched Duo while Quatre rambled on; Duo sat on Trowa's couch, hugging a cushion to his chest, slowly coming to life as Wu Fei and Trowa debated. Heero didn't know what they were talking about; he only knew that the corners of Duo's mouth were turning up.

He wasn't jealous. If Duo said that he wanted to leave, Heero would let him. He hadn't figured out yet how to live, but that was irrelevant. He had been on his own for years, until he started to cut too close to the veins, and then he had to seek out some other way of making peace with the memories. He knew that if Duo left, he would drift back into that numb cycle, but that wasn't Duo's problem. He didn't want to take Duo away from happiness.

Maybe there was something green and poisonous inside his breast when he saw Wu Fei touch Duo's hand. The Chinese man's eyes were fixed on Duo's lips unobtrusively. Heero could see it. Wu Fei was too honorable to take Duo away from him, but if Duo left, he knew that Wu Fei would leave the door open for Duo.

That wasn't the point, though. It wasn't about what Duo wanted or needed. It was about him.

Heero would take everything that Duo offered him, every stolen bit of affection and warmth would be churlishly hoarded close to his heart. He needed it, damn it. Maybe Duo didn't get that much more love and attention in his childhood than Heero, but they were just built differently. Duo was built to make the most of whatever he had, and Heero was built to take what he could to reach his goal.

He had no goal anymore, no destination, no mission, no purpose.

He only had Duo. And if Duo sighed sometimes and thought that he was damned, that was his fault for still believing. And if Duo's eyes were shaded and deadened, well, he still opened his arms and his legs for Heero. If Duo never opened his mouth to speak unless he was spoken to, at least he still parted his lips for Heero's tongue.

The wind whipped through the dripping branches of the willow tree across the street, sending filaments of light and shadow over the window. Heero turned his face into the pillow, and breathed in the scent of shampoo and sweat and Duo's hair.

Duo's insomnia was making Heero cold, but he had slept in colder beds, and when he woke up, he'd warm himself up next to Duo, robbing every bit of warmth that he could get until Duo finally realized he was a lost cause and left him, or turned entirely to ice.