The white bearded man approached the door with trepidation. He knew
sooner or later he would have to face the inevitable but that didn't
make him feel better at all. Taking a deep breath, he knocked on the
door twice and then turned the handle, pushing the door open. Body
shaking in nervousness, he entered the room and closed the door behind
him. His eyes took in the sight of the Japanese boy who was sitting on
the bed, one hand over his stomach and the other one tracing the
opened photo album. The boy looked up at his entry and the Prussian
blue eyes widened in anger and also fear.
"You!" A voice he hadn't heard in fifteen years shot at him. A voice
that once pleaded with him not to take the only thing that the boy
had, now became a low hiss, full of anger and slight fear. "What are
you doing here!?"
The bearded man swallowed and approached the furious boy. "Duo Maxwell
asked me to come to check your wounds."
"Get out." The Japanese boy hissed and tried to inch away as far as he
could with his half healed wounds protesting his every movement.
Dr. Philip took one step forward, "You'll open your wounds if you keep
"Go. Away." The Japanese boy glared at him from where he huddled at
the edge of the bed like a cornered animal.
The man gulped at the glare. "I just..." He was forced to stop as a
photo album flew toward him. Quickly raising his hand in reflex, the
man felt the album hit his hand and its contents flew out of the album
from the impact. Dr. Philip looked down at the scattered photos and
swallowed as most of the photos showed a long haired man playing with
his son; the son who had the same face as the Japanese boy.....
"I said Go Away. " The hiss made the man look up at the angry and
Dr Philip gathered his courage and stepped forward. "Heero, I ..."
"Don't use my name!" The Japanese boy shouted angrily. "Stop there,
don't come nearer!"
"But I..." Not noticing that he had stepped inside the boy's range,
Dr. Philip was forced to stop as a fist connected with his cheek. He
staggered backward from the impact and was silently thankful that the
boy was still weak or he would have had a broken cheek.
"Heero! What are you doing to Dr. Philip!!?" A voice came from the
Dr. Philip looked up in surprise to see Solo approaching him with a
worried look. The man glanced at the Japanese boy and saw he had paled
and shook slightly.
"Are you okay, Doc?" Solo stopped in front of the man. "I'm sorry, I
was suppose to watch him. If I knew you were coming, I wouldn't have
gone to take a walk."
"I'm okay, but he isn't." Dr. Philip straightened and looked in the
direction of the bed where the Japanese boy was visibly shaking.
"Heero!" Solo approached the bed and took the Japanese boy's hand into
his. "It's okay. I know you don't like the others touching you, Dad
told me that. Dr. Philip is our family doctor; he isn't a bad person."
The said doctor couldn't help but flinch at the irony. He noticed the
Japanese boy's face became paler as Solo continued talking. "Doc was
the one who helped you when we found you frozen. He has come to check
you twice but you were asleep at that time. So don't be afraid this
time, Doc only wants to examine your injuries so he can decide your
further treatment and medication."
"No." The Japanese boy tightened his grasp on Solo's hand and turned
to the doctor. "Go away."
"I will, after I check your wounds." With Solo there, the doctor felt
more secure and decided to do his job in the safest way. "Solo, hold
both his hands." He quickly took out a syringe full of transparent
liquid and before the Japanese boy could react, he injected the liquid
into the boy's thigh.
"No!" The Japanese boy jerked up, but Solo held him back. With one
hand pressing on the Japanese boy's thigh, preventing his movement,
the doctor could extract the syringe without problem. "NO!"
"It's just a drug to make you sleep." The doctor tried to calm the
Japanese boy. The drug kicked in a few seconds later as Heero stopped
struggling. "Solo, help me lie him back on the bed, will you?"
Heero could only whimper and blink his eyes sleepily as Solo and the
doctor lowered him onto the bed. And right before the Japanese boy's
eyes closed and brought him to deep slumber, the doctor could hear the
sobbed whisper. "Don't take him from me....."
"What?" Solo looked down at Heero in confusion while the doctor tensed
at the words for a few seconds before he ignored Solo's exclamation
and proceeded to examine the sleeping boy thoroughly.
When Duo came home two hours later, the doctor had gone and Solo was
sitting next to bed, watching Heero worriedly. "Why are you looking at
him like that, Solo?" Duo approached his son.
Solo turned his head toward his father. "Dr. Philip came here two
hours ago, Dad."
"Yes, I asked him to examine Heero. How is Heero?"
"Doc said that Heero has improved greatly. His bandages can be removed
tonight but he still has to remain in bed three more days before he
starts practicing to walk. Doc said to be careful with his stomach,
though. It's very delicate and too much pressure will bring great pain
"Well, that's quite good news to hear, why do you look so worried?"
"Heero punched Dr. Philip before that."
"What?" Duo looked at his son in surprise. He pulled a chair near his
son's and sat down. "Tell me the whole story."
It took Solo only a few minutes to relay the story. By the time he
finished it, Duo was frowning. He would have to talk to Heero about
this. After all, Heero spoke about 'him' again. Who was this 'he' who
Heero didn't want to be taken from him?
"Why he doesn't like anyone touching him, Dad?" Solo asked his
Duo sighed and leant against his seat. "We were soldiers back then,
Solo. It's not wise to let other people you don't know touch you.
Especially Heero, he grew up as a soldier. I never thought he really
disliked having another person near him, though."
"But he seems fine when we touch and talk to him."
"Well, I know I'm an exception and apparently you are too." Duo shrugged,
not knowing a better way to explain Heero's behavior. He stared at
Heero, frowning as he tried to understand Heero's actions while Solo
just sat next to him silently, sporting the same frown as his
Duo looked up from the book he was reading and saw Heero open his eyes
slowly. "Ah, you have awakened." The older man put his book on the
nightstand and stood up. "How are you feeling?"
Duo watched as the Prussian blue eyes became focused and then widened
in panic. "The doctor!" Heero sat up quickly, wincing slightly at his
wounds while his eyes looked around the room wildly. "Solo, where is
"Calm down." Duo sat on the edge of the bed and put one hand on
Heero's shoulder, noticing the Japanese boy shaking slightly. "The
doctor has gone home and Solo went out to meet the other M-five."
"Solo is okay?" Heero relaxed a bit.
Duo frowned slightly. "Of course, he is. But I can't say the same
about you. Why did you punch the doctor, Heero?" The older man could
feel Heero tensing at his question. He waited for several minutes but
Heero just kept silent, obviously not wanting to answer the question.
Duo reached forward and seized Heero's chin, lifting the boy's face up
to him. "Answer me, Heero. I need to know your reason this time."
"Heero." Duo admonished the Japanese boy. "Answer me."
Heero shook his head slightly, restrained by Duo's hand on his chin.
"I need to know, Heero. I can't let the others meet you without
worrying about your reaction."
The Japanese boy bowed his head. "I...... " Duo was slightly surprised
when Heero sounded so desperate. "I won't ... react like that...
Heero shook his head. "... don't ask me anymore....... please?"
Heero was really upset. Duo could tell it from how tense Heero was and
how Heero's voice seemed strangled. Not to mention, Heero had pleaded
with him. Again. Heero's reaction must have something to do with his
injuries, Duo was sure of it. But he couldn't press Heero further because it was obvious that Heero wouldn't answer him. Duo sighed
and relented. He released Heero's chin and gathered the Japanese boy
in his arms. "All right, I won't ask you about it now. But someday you
will have to tell me about this."
"..arigato...." Heero whispered and leaned against Duo's chest. Duo
rested his chin on Heero's head and noticed how small Heero was
compared to him now. He had grown up into a man in fifteen years while
Heero didn't grow at all. He was fifteen years older than Heero now,
but in body only. Heero's mind wasn't a mind of a seventeen year old.
Heero had been an adult since they met. The Japanese boy was forced to
grow up and trained to use weapons since he was a toddler.
"What did... the doctor say about my health?" Heero's voice broke Duo
from his musings.
"You're fine. The bandages can be removed now and you need to rest for three days
more before practicing to walk." Duo answered.
"Practice to walk?" Heero said faintly. "Am I crippled, Duo?"
"No, you will be able to walk like you used to." Duo hugged the
Japanese boy tightly. "You just need to practice walking again. You've
been frozen for fifteen years, remember? Added with the injuries you
have, Dr. Philip predicted that your leg muscles will be weak and that you will need to
be retrained to walk." Duo nuzzled Heero's hair and tried to stir
Heero from thinking about his wounds. "You have to get well soon,
Heero. I have surprises for you."
"Yes, once you are fully recovered and practice walking, I'll show you
"Why not now?"
"I have my reasons." Duo kissed Heero's cheek. "Just focus on getting
Three days passed by and Duo decided it was time for Heero to start
practicing. He thought it would be an easy exercise but it turned out
that Heero needed four days just to be able to walk out of his room
without falling or leaning against the wall for support. The Japanese
boy's legs were weak enough after being frozen for fifteen years.
Added with the healing wounds on both thighs and stomach and the boy's
still quite weak condition, Heero was doing a remarkable job in his
exercise for being able to walk for two minutes straight without
falling. Still, it boiled Duo's blood to see Heero struggling to walk.
He vowed again and again to find the ones who injured his Heero and
make them suffer ten times worse.
After seven days of this, Heero finally managed to walk down the
stairs from the second floor where his room was to the first floor.
However, Duo had to catch the Japanese boy from falling on the last
step and carried him to the couch at the living room. Heero was
panting and sweating profusely as he lowered the Japanese boy down on
the soft couch. "I told you not to force yourself too much." Duo
scolded the boy and wiped the sweat on Heero's face with his
handkerchief while the boy's eyes glanced around, looking at the
surroundings for the first time.
"How many people do you have for housekeeping?" Heero asked, eyes
still roaming over the room.
Duo blinked at the question. "One butler, two maids, one cook, and one
"Just wanted to know..." Heero trailed off as his eyes fell on a
photograph on the wall. Those Prussian blue orbs dimmed as Heero
quickly looked away.
However, Duo didn't miss the quick gesture. He followed Heero's
previous gaze and saw his wedding picture on the wall. He and Hilde
were kissing happily there. Shit! Duo swore inwardly as he cupped
Heero's cheek and lifted the Japanese boy's face to him. "That's the
past, Heero. It's just an old picture that I never bothered to take
down. She means nothing to me anymore."
"Why? You were happy..." Heero averted his eyes from Duo's intense
look. The seventeen year old Duo maybe would be oblivious to the
little gesture but the wiser and the older Duo, the thirty one year
old man, noticed and understood the feelings behind the little
gesture. Duo closed his eyes for a moment and when they opened again,
they were full of determination. The older man gathered Heero into his
arms and stood up, carrying the startled boy up to the second floor.
"Duo, put me down, I can walk by myself." Heero stated, but the older
man ignored him and kept walking, passing the room Heero occupied.
"Duo?" The Japanese boy frowned in confusion. "Where are you taking
"To where you are supposed to be," Duo answered calmly as he entered a
Looking around the room, Heero widened his eyes in realization. "Duo,
"This is my bedroom." Duo lowered Heero onto the queen sized bed and
sat down on the empty spot next to the Japanese boy. "Hilde never
enters this room. Only Solo is allowed to enter this room, save the
"Occupants?" Heero repeated faintly. "You.... sleep with... someone
Duo didn't miss the bitter tone in Heero's voice. It was very ironic
that he now could easily detect Heero's real feelings by his voice or
eyes. He just wished he had this ability fifteen years ago. If he did,
he would have never left Heero for Hilde. But then... Solo wouldn't
have been born..... Duo shook his head to clear his mind. There was no
sense in dwelling on the past; it couldn't be changed. But he could
try make up for the future. He cupped Heero's cheek with one hand and
stared down straight at Heero's blue eyes. "There are only two
occupants. They are me and you."
Duo watched Heero's eyes widening in surprise. He caressed Heero's
cheek as his calm expression crumbled, showing the longing he had kept
hidden for fifteen years. "This is where you are supposed to be, with
me, at my side, as my life mate. I've been waiting for you to come
back to my life. Fifteen years is a very long time, Heero." Duo's voice
began to shake as he gathered Heero's face in both hands, holding it
as if a priceless thing, which was true. "Gomen ne. Hontou ni gomen. I
took you for granted and realized it too late. I am a fool, a bastard.
I missed you so much. Fifteen years.... I searched for you for fifteen
years, telling myself over and over that you were still alive
somewhere, that you would show up someday and I'd be able to make it
up to you. Every time Solo smiles or laughs, I vow to make you laugh
as happy as him....."
"Let me finish ..." Duo took a breath and pulled Heero into his arms,
hugging the boy tightly as he buried his nose into the messy chocolate
hair and whispered near the Japanese boy's ear. "After you were gone,
I felt so lost in our house... Almost every thing I saw reminded me of
you, the way you took care of me, the way you tended the garden, and
so many other things. I began to realize how much you have done for me
and how blind I was. I chose Hilde for the love and warmth she
promised, never realizing you had been giving them to me all along."
Duo felt Heero tensing and pulled his head away slightly, looking down
to meet a pair of vulnerable blue eyes. "I know I'm a baka. I know I'm
so selfish, but I'm trying to fix that. I have had fifteen years to
learn from my mistakes. Fifteen years, Heero..... I have been celibate
and regretting my mistakes almost every day for fifteen years. Don't
you think my punishment for abandoning you is enough? All I want now
is for us to be together, to make you happy. I don't want you to think
that I still have feelings for Hilde or the other women and become sad
because of that. You have nothing to worry because the one I love is
The Prussian blue eyes widened in surprise. "Lo..... love..?"
"Yes, I love you. Do you think I only want you for sex?" Duo meant it
as sarcasm, but he saw Heero averting his eyes at his words and
realized that was what Heero thought all along. The older man's face
darkened. "You know what, Heero..." Without warning, he roughly pushed
the Japanese boy down onto the bed and pinned him with his body. His
hands shot up and held the Japanese boy's hands on each side of his
head. His face was hovering a mere inch from Heero's.
"Duo, what... hmmph" Duo muffled Heero's kiss with his lips and shoved
his tongue into the Japanese boy's mouth quickly. He lapped Heero's
palate roughly and ground his lower body against the Japanese boy,
causing Heero to gasp into his mouth. After ravishing Heero's mouth
for a minute, Duo pulled away. "If I wanted you for sex, I wouldn't wait
for you to recover. I would have fucked you the first day you opened
your eyes." Heero flinched at Duo's rough words.
"....But I don't want you like that..." Duo took a breath and forced
himself to calm down. He released Heero's hands and bent down, kissing
Heero gently on the lips. "I want you because I love you." Duo
murmured the words softly and then pulled away, plopping down next to
Heero. "I'll hug you, kiss you, and caress you, but I won't take you
if you think of me like that." Duo said the words while looking up on
the ceiling. His face saddened at the thought that he had treated
Heero so bad that Heero thought he was only an object for him. He put
his hands behind his head and closed his eyes. "I treated you very bad
in the past, didn't I?...... This time, I won't do that. I'll wait
till you ask me to make love to you. I've waited for fifteen years. I
can wait a little longer....."
For a full minute, Heero was silent. Duo didn't talk. He kept his eyes
closed and cursed himself inwardly for treating Heero so bad in the
past. He was startled when a weight settled on him. He opened his eyes
and saw Heero's face a few inches from his. The Japanese boy's face
was devoid of emotion, but Duo could see uncertainty and disbelief,
mixed with hope and happiness in his Prussian blue eyes.
"Love... me?" Heero asked faintly.
Duo smiled and put his arms around Heero, pulling the Japanese boy
down to rest his weight completely on him. "Yes, I love you, Heero.
Always love you. I just didn't realize it until you were gone...." He
kissed Heero's lips gently and was delighted when Heero kissed back.
They parted slowly and Duo looked straight at Heero. "I know you love
me and I know you enough to know that you probably won't ever say the words.
But just this once, I want to hear them."
"I..." Heero looked uncomfortable.
"Onegai? Only once and I won't ask for them anymore." Duo murmured as
he caressed Heero's cheek.
It was quite a long time before Heero swallowed and nodded slightly.
"Thank you, Heero." Duo smiled and pulled the Japanese boy down to
meet his lips. When they broke away, the older man murmured
encouragingly. "Say it..."
"I..." Heero hesitated and swallowed once. "I loo...."
Right at that time, the door was banged opened and Solo stormed in,
making Heero and Duo jerk apart in surprise. "Dad, Heero is go...."
The boy stopped when he saw the scene before him.
Heero quickly rolled away and Duo sat up, looking at his son
worriedly. "Solo, look...."
At that time, Solo's face had gone from white to red. He glared at his
father angrily. "What the hell does this mean? What is Heero doing in
your bed? And in that position?!"
"Solo, calm down." Duo stood up, noting how similar his son's glare to
Heero's when the Japanese boy was about to kill someone. "Look, I have
been meaning to tell you about us.."
"Us, huh?." Solo hissed and glared at Heero angrily. "Damn you!"
"SOLO!" Duo barked in surprise at Solo's words while behind him, Heero
Still glaring at the Japanese boy, Solo continued mournfully. "I knew
it.... I thought it was just my overactive imagination, the way Dad
looks at you and the way he holds your hands... I ignored my
suspicions when you woke up though. You treated me so kind and seemed
to care so much for me. You even consoled me about mother. You said
nice things, good things about her while the truth was... " Solo
swallowed angrily as one tear rolled on his cheek. "It's you who made
my parents separate! Yes, it must be you! No wonder mother hates me.
It's because I look like you, the slut who stole her husband!"
Solo wobbled and held his red cheek, looking at his father in
disbelief. "You... hit me?"
"That's enough, Solo. Never ever call Heero that again." Duo said
warningly while inwardly, he felt bad for hitting his son.
"You never hit me before." Solo trembled in anger. "You hit your son
just because of this slut?!"
"Solo, you..." Duo growled and raised his hand, ready to strike. He
loved his son dearly and now he was disappointed to hear his son say
throw such dirty words at Heero. Anger reached his violet eyes and
Solo flinched at his look.
"Duo.. don't..." Heero's voice came from behind him. It was
surprisingly calm... too calm. Duo knew Heero was masking his true
feelings. Solo's words must have hurt the Japanese boy deeply.
Nevertheless, Heero's voice calmed Duo a bit and he lowered his hand.
Seeing it, Solo straightened and glared at Heero again, tears rolling
freely on both of his cheeks. "I don't need your help! You've crushed
my hope of someday seeing my mother and father together again. I hate
you! You even steal my father from me, not caring about my feelings! I
hate you, you fucking slut!" Before Duo managed to react, Solo had
already run out of the room.
"SOLO!" Duo bellowed and ran after his son.
"Duo, don't hurt him." Heero's worried voice sadly didn't reach the
older man's ears. He was already out of the room when the Japanese boy
struggled to stand up, wanting to chase both father and son. However,
Heero was still weak and he stumbled down before reaching the door.
The impact with the floor caused his wounded stomach to throb
painfully, making him curl up and hold his stomach. After waiting for
a few seconds for the pain to subside, Heero tried to move again, but
he soon hissed in pain and held his stomach again.
The Japanese boy could only lie there on the floor and look at the
opened door mournfully. A tear rolled down on his cheek as Solo's
words of hatred echoed in his head.
"Don't hate me................." The whisper sounded so hollow in the
room, no one heard the pain carried in the whisper and no one saw how
the Japanese boy curled up and put his hands on his stomach as if it
was holding something precious in there, the thing that had been taken
from him forcefully fifteen years ago.
The thing he loved dearly, but hated him in return.