Disguise the Limit - Part 2
Duo's Friendship Arc 10
by Dyna Dee
Neither boy slept well as the night wore on. It seemed to both that it dragged on forever, as sleep came in brief intervals, and that was the reason they later, in a report, blamed for their oversleeping.
"Michele!" a woman's voice called out, waking both pilots in the same moment with a violent start. It came from within a close proximity to their location.
"I just need to get my doll." a child's small voice called back, sounding even closer.
Wufei responded immediately by crawling quickly but silently to the door of the playhouse, took hold of the nob and held it firmly. He felt a slight pull on it from the other side.
"Mom!" the child cried out in a whine of loud dismay. "It's stuck again."
"It's the dampness in the air, honey. It'll probably open when you get home this afternoon."
"But I want my doll!" the little voice cried in frustration.
"Michele!" the voice of the mother took on a tone of exasperation. "You are going to make me late for work. Dad has left already, and Buddy and Deb do not want to be late for school. So come on, NOW!"
A sigh of frustration and anger sounded just beyond the door accompanied by a thump, as a little foot kicked the wooden door. "Stupid door." the girl growled and muttered to herself on her way back to the house.
Wufei let go of the nob and exchanged a relieved glance with his friend. "That was close." he whispered.
Duo nodded and pushed himself up into a sitting position. Wufei noticed his face wince in pain.
"Where are you hurt?" he asked.
Duo's eyes looked up at him from under his long bangs. "Pick a spot." he answered, his voice dripping with sarcasm
There was an open vent covered with a wire screen at the top of the playhouse wall. Wufei stood in a crouched position to peer out through it. "I'll give them ten minutes." he said quietly. A loud growl came from Duo's stomach. "I know." Wufei answered it. "We'll get some food soon."
"Your plan?" the braided boy asked as he sat up cross legged, his arms wrapped tightly around his middle.
"First, if the house is completely vacated, we gain entrance to it, get food, and then contact the others. A decision on what to do will come after that."
Duo nodded and sat quietly, which worried the other. Ten minutes passed in silence. Turning to him, Wufei whispered. "Stay here." Without a sound, the Shenlong pilot left their shelter, closing the child-size door behind him.
Duo eased himself down onto the pink and white doll blankets, and went back to sleep.
Less than five minutes later, the Shenlong pilot was back, and surprised to see Duo asleep once more. Wufei roused him and led his sleepy companion out of the play house. The fog was just beginning to lift, yet the morning was still thickly grey and the air was cold and damp. Wufei walked to the back door of the large house and opened it, ushering Duo inside. "They left the bathroom window open" he explained in a low voice as Duo sat down at the kitchen table. Several boxes of cereal sat on the table top as well as a bowl of fruit. Duo reached for a banana and peeled it. Wufei opened the dishwasher and pulled out two clean bowls and spoons. Before long they had both managed to eat several bowls of cereal and several pieces of fruit.
"I found a computer in the den, I'll see if I can contact Heero. You clean up here."
"Sure." Duo stood and grabbed the bowls.
It only took a few moments for Wufei to start up the computer and go through the system finding all its security measures. He logged onto the Internet and into his e-mail site and sent a message to Heero and waited. Within moments a message was sent back, and he realized, not surprisingly, that Heero had been standing by, waiting for word from them on their location and status.
Wufei began to type, relating all that had happened and their general location.
Heero informed him that the city was on lock down. Oz had assessed the gundam's damage from a video tape of the battle, and assumed they wouldn't travel far and had locked down the nearest city to search for the pilots. Reports of two suspected terrorists heading in the direction of the city were given by the local media, along with the general description of the two suspects as an Asian boy, his height and weight and general appearance, and a Caucasian teenager dressed in black with a long, brown braid, with his estimated height, age, and weight. Heero advised them to disguise themselves and sit out the lock down, avoid capture, and contact him when it was safe for pick up.
Heero next asked regarding their health status.
Wufei frowned as he typed his reply, "No broken bones, but 02 is quiet."
"As in not talking much, not smiling much either."
"Check for damage, and feed regularly."
Wufei paused for a moment then typed again. "Have an idea for disguise, but anticipate resistance from 02."
Heero replied almost instantly. "Instruct him that you are the lead in this situation. He will do as you say or answer to me. Just don't push him too far. And be careful."
Wufei signed off and then erased any evidence of his tampering from the computer's memory. He left the room, and hearing water running, followed the sound to what appeared to be a master bedroom. The bathroom adjacent to it was where the sound of running water was coming from. He opened the door to reveal a steam-filled room and discarded black clothing that lay in a pile on the floor. He looked up to see the vague outline behind the frosted shower door of a pale body with long, brown wet hair plastered against it.
"I'm going to wash your clothes, Duo." he called out.
"Thanks." the other called out sounding a bit brighter.
Picking up the clothes, Wufei turned to leave, hitting the switch for the ventilating fan as he exited the room.
Half an hour later, Duo emerged, a bright yellow towel secured tightly at his waist, his hair wrapped loosely in a matching towel, and a hair brush in hand.
"I found the family's calendar." Wufei informed him as he lounged on the king size bed, dressed in a borrowed robe as his own clothes had joined Duo's in washing machine. "The kids get out of school at 3:00 p.m., so we should be out of here by then."
"Did you contact the others?" Duo asked as he began the enormous task of untangling the wet mass partially slung over his shoulder.
Wufei proceeded to tell the half naked boy all that Heero had related to him as to the city's lock down, their reported descriptions, and his orders. He then took a deep breath, readying himself for the hard part. "Heero put me in charge." he announced as casually as possible, his eyes watching his companion closely. "And he wanted me to relay the message that you are to follow any order I should issue to you to insure our escape,...."
That stopped the movement of the hairbrush and Duo looked up suspiciously. "Wufei?" he said, his voice low in warning.
"....or you will answer to him when we return." Wufei could tell from the dark glare that Duo was anything but happy about the situation. None of the pilots ever wanted to be in a position to "answer" to Heero for a mistake or an unheeded order. "I was also ordered to check you for any wounds, and to feed you regularly."
To his surprise, Duo gave a small smile. "Heero knows me well." he chuckled.
Wufei stood as Duo went back to brushing his hair. "As long as you are in a state of undress, let me check you for injuries."
"With or without the towel?" Duo looked up teasingly at his normally stoic friend.
"Without, of course." Wufei enjoyed the moment as all color on the face of the Deathscythe pilot drained to a pasty white.
"You're kidding, right?" he asked his voice tight and unsure.
"Of course." Wufei reassured him, chuckling. "Just lift your hair."
It only took a moment for him to study the small, wiry frame. Duo had not an ounce of extra flesh or fat covering his bones. Though not really skinny, he was incredibly slight with sleek muscles. His back, chest, and sides were liberally coated with dark bruises. His hair had covered the damage as he came out of the bathroom, but now, with it lifted, it was very visible.
"No wonder you were quiet." Wufei crouched down to examine his legs. His calves had only a couple of small bruises. "Your thighs and hips? He asked looking up. Duo blushed. "Worse than the lower half." Bending slightly, Duo lifted the lower edge of the towel showing the outside of his right thigh. A solid black and blue bruise covered the front and side from above his knee to the top of his leg. "I hit your pilot's chair as we set down." he explained.
Duo moved to opened up the top of the other side of the towel to expose his left hip bone. Not only was it black and blue, but the skin had been scraped off and it was raw and oozing.
"Why didn't you say something?" Wufie looked up angry.
Duo shrugged. "What could we have done while we were running?" he explained reasonably.
"I saw a first aid kit in the kitchen." Wufei said moving quickly out of the room. "Try the bed, it's really quite comfortable." he called out as he left.
He returned a few moments later, pleased to see the other boy had heeded his suggestion. Duo flushed red from embarrassment as he exposed the wounded hip. Noting that, Wufei quickly bandaged the open wound and allowed Duo to tuck the towel back into place. They both sighed when the job was completed.
"Now what?" Duo asked
"Disguises. They have a fairly accurate description of us, so we are going to have to be clever to deceive them."
"I am not cutting my hair!" Duo emphatically informed his friend who was moving to leave the room.
"I already considered that." he called back.
A few minutes later he returned with an armful of clothes which he tossed onto the bed. Duo had busied himself by going through the drawers, and the closet door was open, clearly showing that he had been through it also. "What are you doing?" Wufei asked.
"Just looking." The braided boy replied casually. He then turned and his eyes fell on the pile of clothes on the bed, his eyes widened in horror.
"No way!" He choked out.
"Yes!" Wufei answered equally forceful.
"No. No. No." Duo shook his head adamantly and stomped his right foot to accentuate his words, then winced at the pain the action brought.
"Duo." Wufei took hold of his shoulders to force the boy to look at him. "Listen, the authorities are looking for two teens, boys, an Asian and a Caucasian boy with a long, brown braid dressed in black. I cannot change my nationality, but we can change your appearance from a boy to a girl. They won't be looking for a couple.
"How about two girls?" Duo looked up hopeful that he would not have to be alone in his humiliation.
Wufei shook his head. "Two girls wandering through a city at night alone are too vulnerable."
"Please, Wufei. Don't make me do this." Duo's eyes were sincerely pitiful as he begged.
"I'm sorry Duo. I'm not doing this to be cruel or spiteful. I honestly believe this is the best way to evade capture. Consider it an acting assignment."
The slumping of his shoulders showed Duo's silent acquiesce to his eminent torture.
"Come on, try on the clothes and see if they fit." Wufei urged gently, knowing he was treading on unsteady waters.
They both tried on the assortment of clothing that the Shenlong pilot had gathered from the different bedrooms. It was settled the Duo would take a floral blouse with sheer long sleeves, a ribbed, long-sleeved purple turtleneck sweater, a bra and necessary under clothes, a navy blue dress, and accessories to complete the outfits, and shoes.
Wufei chose two pairs of pleated pants with a white shirt and a solid dark green tee-shirt. A pair of round, silver rimmed glasses on his nose completed the picture.
Duo stood in front of the mirror in a long sleeve, knee-length navy blue dress. It had simple lines to it and flared out at the hips. The only break in color was a small, white lace collar at the neckline.
"You need to add another sock." Wufei held out two rolled up socks which the other took after unzipping the back of the dress and pulled down the front. He carefully stuffed the bra with them. Wufei did the honors of zipping up the back of the dress and they both looked at the image they created with a critical eye.
"Hum....... Not bad." Duo said, a small smile forming on his mischievous face. He turned around and noted the skirt flared out to expose his slender legs encased in dark blue tights. "If I didn't think of you as such a good friend, I might date ya." he told his reflection, relishing the look of feigned disgust on his friends face in the reflection of the mirror.
"Get over yourself, Maxwell." Wufei sneered, half smiling at Duo's playful manner.
Re-adjusting the socks to a more natural, rounded look, the Deathscythe pilot chanced a look at Wufei and studied him with the same eye to detail. "You look........studious, very serious." He frowned slightly. "Not my type at all really."
Wufei smiled at his reflection. "Ah, but you are a wise girl. You go for brains instead of brawn, knowing in the long run that it will get you farther in life."
"It will?" Duo asked, surprise written on his face. Wufei didn't answer, but continued to look at their reflections. Duo looped his arm through his. "We make an odd, but handsome couple." he mused. "But you need just one thing more." He reached up and pulled off the band that tightly held back the black hair. The straight, shining mass fell instantly in place just below his shoulders. Duo smiled, quite pleased with himself.
Wufei raised an eyebrow in contemplation, and silently agreed. It was more or less a compromise since Duo had to dress like a girl. He then glanced at his watch. It was eleven o'clock. "Alright, we have time to try out some make-up, do your hair, and then see if we can get you to walk and talk like a girl.