Lies - Between Friends and Lovers
by Dyna Dee
Duo checked his watch as he stepped off the elevator on his floor. He was a bit later than when he told Taylor to expect him, and his feet were dragging. He was bone tired, but for all he'd accomplished during the past couple of days it was a small price to pay. He'd successfully delivered yet another stash of goods to L2, this time using what the Maganacs had gathered and not from a freighter. And as he'd felt with every other successful delivery, the pleasant sensation of accomplishment followed him home. Tainting that good feeling, however, was the news he'd had from Howard when the call came for him to take his supply laden shuttle to L2. Wufei had been injured on his first run, taking a bullet meant for Howard. The old man had reassured him his friend was fine, but the injure meant Wufei would be observing the next couple of runs instead of being an active participant. Howard added that the injured man claimed he was fully capable of flying the shuttle, regardless of his injury, but Howard was hesitant to use him until he could move without pain.
He rolled his shoulders, trying to work the kink out of his neck he'd acquired on the trip back. After keying the correct numbers into the security pad to the left of his front door, a subtle click signaled the lock's release. He turned the doorknob and nearly fell through the door as he stumbled over the threshold on weary feet. He had barely straightened when he noticed the lights in the living room were on. Usually, that wouldn't be cause for alarm because Taylor often waited in his apartment for his return.
But that wasn't the case this time.
Time skid to a mind-numbing halt the instant he caught sight of who was sitting in the next room. He forgot how to breathe. With his hand tightly gripping the knob of the open front door, he struggled with the ramifications that would come from the sight before him. Heero was sitting in his living room along with Taylor, his lover glaring for all he was worth. And the moment those deep blue eyes met his own, Duo could see that Heero was beyond angry; he was livid. God help him, he was in trouble now.
"Duo!" Taylor sprung up from the sofa, his expression reflecting desperation. But before he could take a step forward Heero's hand shot out and grabbed hold of his arm, keeping the man in place. Receiving a stern and formidable look of warning from Heero, Taylor froze in place. "Sit down." Heero growled in a low, menacing voice. With a tortured sigh his double's shoulders slumped before he flung himself back onto the sofa, his pleading eyes returning to Duo once more, silently asking for help in getting out of this situation. Although Taylor appeared unharmed, at least physically, Duo could see fear in his eyes. He didn't think any less of the man for feeling that way because he didn't feel a whole lot different.
"Surprise?" he said lamely, unable to manage the teasing smile he was hoping for. Heero's glare intensified. Placing his helmet on the table next to the door and dropping his backpack on the floor, he walked forward with a feeling of resignation and frantically trying to come up with something to say that wouldn't give himself or his friends away. Too many people on L2 depended on them for their survival. Heero, he reasoned, couldn't know everything. Taylor could be counted on to keep his mouth shut. After all, his freedom would also be in jeopardy if it was discovered he knew anything about the marauders. Duo's heart ached, and suddenly it became very difficult to maintain his composure. On top of everything that hinged on the coming confrontation, his heart ached with the knowledge that this was probably the end of his relationship with Heero.
"See, I told you he'd show up," Taylor said in a you should have believed me, you asshole tone of voice. Duo gathered by the level of Heero's narrow-eyed glare toward the man that he wasn't too fond of his double, and probably never would be unless he could come up with a good and believable excuse their subterfuge. But before he could begin to formulate his words, Taylor turned to him once more and released some of his own pent up frustration, which had probably been building up for however long he'd been held prisoner by Heero. "What the fuck, Duo? You told me everything about this schmuck except that he's a psycho and scary as hell."
Duo shrugged. "To know him is to love him," he answered with a nervous grin. With a snort denoting his disbelief, Taylor asked, "Can I go now? I've had this pit bull guarding my ass since last night and I'm beat."
"Yeah, you can go, Tay. I guess Heero and I need to talk."
"I think he should stay," Heero said, his anger simmering just beneath the surface.
Duo studied Heero for a long moment, trying to judge just how angry the other man was. He was almost certain that he could deal with Heero, but it would be easier to do without Taylor being present during the conversation. Glancing back at his look alike, he waved him towards the door. "Goodnight, Taylor."
This time Heero didn't try to stop the man as he rose from the sofa and walked stiffly towards the front door without glancing back. Before exiting, Taylor paused by the cabinet next to the entry and bent to open the small door. From it he removed a non-descriptive cap. He curled his long braid around his head and pulled the cap over the top of it, put on the tinted glasses resting on the table top, then squared his shoulders and promptly left the apartment.
With an defeated sigh, Duo moved forward with obvious reluctance a sat in the place Taylor had just vacated, next to Heero, who seemed so unlike the man who'd confessed his love just one week ago. He did his best to avoid looking at the other man during the next few awkward moments. What he could possibly say to avoid incriminating himself or his friends, if indeed Heero had any idea about what they were doing? A lump of dread brewed in the pit of his belly, and he feared that what he and Heero had rediscovered during the previous weekend was about come crashing down. Chancing a glance at the other man, he asked, "What did Taylor tell you?"
"Not enough," Heero answered in a tight voice. "His physical appearance, he said, was your brainchild. His transformation, from whatever he looked like to being your double, was for your convenience, so that he could take your place whenever you didn't feel like attending certain events."
"You must have hired the very best to do the cosmetic alterations because, physically, he's almost a perfect replica of you," Heero stated, looking grim and disturbed by the whole situation. "But not good enough that I couldn't see the differences." Receiving no response from Duo, he continued. "His transformation must have cost a fortune. It seems a bit of overkill just because you don't feel like going to a movie premiere." And then Duo could feel Heero's eyes on him as he asked, "Where have you been during the past 24 hours?"
"Are you asking as a Preventer, Heero, or the man I spent last weekend with?"
"I am one and the same, Duo. I can't completely separate the two."
After a pause, he answered the question, somewhat truthfully. "I was riding my bike."
From the corner of eye, Duo watched as Heero's hands, resting on his thighs, tightened into fists, his gaze focused now on the curtained window across from them. It was clear the man was fighting to control his anger when he said through gritted teeth, "You told me you were going to be at the premiere. You lied to me, Duo. I thought you still held to the standard of not lying. Have you been lying to me all along?"
Also struggling to remain calm and rational, he answered, "When I talked to you, I thought I was going to the premiere, but I changed my mind. I really didn't feel like being Shannon's date when I only wanted to be with you."
"There was another marauder attack this week. Were you involved?" Heero's head turned and his eye locked onto his own. He was looking at him as if he was trying to divine his inner most secrets.
"Are we back to this again?" Duo said, exasperated. Even though Heero had a right to question him, especially after he'd been caught in a lie, he didn't feel like using what precious energy he had left arguing with the man. "You obviously don't believe me, so it's pointless for me to try and defend myself since you've already come up with some cockamamie idea of your own as to where I've been."
Laying his head back against the top of the sofa, Duo closed his eyes and sighed wearily. He'd wished, more than anything, that things had gone differently between them. Tears of regret pricked the corners of his eyes, but he willed them away. He would not break down in front of Heero. Damn, he was tired. Right now all he wanted to do was to go to bed and pretend that his heart wasn't about to be torn apart again.
"Where have you been?" Heero demanded sternly.
"I think I've said all that I'm going to tonight, Heero. I'm tired, and anything I say will probably be twisted around in your suspicious mind to make me the villain here."
Duo gasped out loud when without warning he was roughly grabbed by the front of his jacket jerked forward until he was separated by mere inches from Heero's scowling face. "Don't!" he cried out, instinctively bringing his arms up to block the expected blow from hitting his face.
He was immediately released from Heero's grasp and allowed to fall back. "I'm sorry," Heero gasped, and Duo peeked out from beneath his raised arms to see an expression of horror on the other man's face. "I swear I wasn't going to hit you, Duo. I... I didn't mean to frighten you. I just want you to talk to me, explain what's going on."
Deeply shaken from having thought, for that one, brief moment, that Heero was about to put him back into the hospital, Duo desperately fought to calm himself. His heart was racing and, damn, why couldn't he catch his breath?
"You're white as a sheet, Duo. Take a deep breath and lower your arms. I swear, I wasn't going to hurt you."
He searched those blue eyes he loved so well, and saw that Heero was equally upset and... sincere. Cautiously lowering his arms he forced himself to relax and take a deep breath, as Heero had urged. "I... I'm sorry, too, Heero." Catching his breath was still a problem. "I really didn't... mean to react like... that." He paused to take another deep breath, and when he felt he could finish a whole sentence without gasping for air, he continued. "Guess your being so angry and grabbing me brought back bad memories."
"Duo." Heero's tone was imploring, his expression anguished. For several long moments he seemed incapable of voicing what he wanted to say. In the past, when words had failed Heero took action, and that seemed to be the plan he was going to fall back on now. Moving slowly, Heero brought his hand up and softly stroked his chilled left cheek with the back of his fingers. Then leaning forward, he gently brushed his lips against Duo's closed mouth, cautiously exploring them until the braided man could no longer resist. With a surrendering sigh, Duo leaned into the kiss. Heero's lips, both gentle and soothing, worked their magic and helped him to relax his guard further and calm his racing heart and jittering nerves.
Sensing the change in him, Heero pulled back, and while cradling Duo's face in his head, he looked into his eyes and said, "I've given you my word that I'll never, no matter what, hit you again. But from your reaction it looks like I still have a long way to go to prove myself to you. I swear, on my honor, that I will never cause you harm, in any way. Do you believe me, Duo?"
Heero's earnest sincerity could be seen in his eyes. Duo did believe him, and was touched by his promise. He nodded his answer, and now that things that calmed down considerably, exhaustion swept over him once more. He closed his eyes and let his head rest heavily in the palms of Heero's hands. "I know you want to talk this out, Heero, but I'm just so damn tired."
"All right, I'll let you rest. But before you go to bed, will you tell me where you've been?"
"Trust is a two way street," he replied softly. "Do you really think I've been doing something wrong, that I'm one of those marauders?"
"Given your ties to L2, your knowledge of stealth systems, Taylor's appearance and your disappearance aligning with the last attack, you can hardly blame me for being suspicious."
Pulling away, Duo rubbed his left eye with two fingers as he answered in a matter-of-fact voice. "Like Taylor said, he's my stand-in, Heero, for when I just can't handle the crowds, the cameras and the questions." Leaning back against the sofa again, he turned his head and let his eyes, barely open at this point, rest on the other man while he continued. "I might look like I enjoy all the attention, but to tell you the truth modeling is just an easy way for me to make a lot of money. Unfortunately, the trade off is having to deal with tabloids, entertainment shows and paparazzi. They dig through my garbage and jump out in front from nowhere just to get some cockeyed story about me.
"The public might know something about my past, but certainly not all of it or the fact that I'm gay. I do all the modeling jobs I've signed contracts for, and attend some of the social events I'm invited to, but it's Taylor who has removed any suspicion about my sexual orientation by going to various functions with famous women I've come in contact with. My manager doesn't have a problem with my being gay, but those who pay me a lot of money to model their clothing want me to portray the look of a ladies' man, not a homosexual. Almost every contract I've signed has a clause which stipulates I'm to avoid any press that could impact negatively on my image and their clothing line. Evidently, coming out and saying that I'm attracted to men is detrimental to selling men's clothes."
"Tell me honestly, Duo, were you seeing someone else while Taylor took your place?" The deep frown on Heero's made it clear he was disturbed by the idea.
"I'll admit to hooking up on a rare occasion, but..." and then he paused wonder if Heero meant his comment to cover the past couple of year, or the last weekend. "What the...?" Though he was grateful for the change in subject, he couldn't believe Heero had left off questioning him about the marauders to ask him about his sex life. "Let me get this right. Are you actually asking me if I slept with someone other than you this past week?" How could Heero think such a thing? Especially after last weekend? The serious expression on Heeor's face gave him his answer. "You have got to be kidding me."
And then a look of relief flashed in Heero's eyes and he pressed for more information. "Please, Duo, I won't ask again, but I need you to tell me where you were. I swear that I'll believe whatever you say." So he didn't escape the question after all.
Taken aback by the unusual sound of Heero pleading and his promise to believe whatever he told him, Duo was coming to realize how much the man had changed from the boy he'd known. And the changes he was seeing in the man were positive and warmed his heart. This might be the chance he'd been hoping for, to protect their operation and keep from telling Heero the full truth, thereby jeopardizing their relationship. He hated having to deceive Heero again, but he really had no other choice; he wasn't alone in this operation, after all. Any confession, whether to clear his conscience or give Heero what he wanted, would jeopardize his friends, the Maganacs, Howard, Stu and Buck, not to mention the people of L2. He hoped against hope for the impossible, that his lover would never find out the truth, especially after the promises he made this evening.
Focusing on the third button on Heero's shirt, unable to meet his eyes, he tried to sound believable when he began his explanation in a somber voice. "When I can't force a smile any longer and pretend that I'm the happiest bastard in the universe, I leave town for a couple of days and pay Taylor to take my place. He does a good job, usually. I've asked him to be careful not to go too far with the women he escorts in my absence, or commit himself, and me, to any relationships. Some of the tabloid headlines you've seen were spawned by Taylor's early blunders."
Heero looked as if pieces of a puzzle were finally coming together. "I wondered if you were bisexual from some of the articles I've read."
"Nah, that was just Taylor having a hard time keeping his fly zipped up around so many beautiful and willing women. He's also from L2, and like me he grew up way too fast on the streets. He gets a bit over his head when a beautiful woman, especially a popular actresses with too much time and money on their hands, show interest in him. Despite my constant warnings, he sometimes gets more involved than he should."
"Where do you go when you leave here? To a hotel?"
"No. Quat and Tro have a cabin, up north. Once I'm there I stay a night or two then come back, ready to endure another week of jobs and appointments."
"This cabin can be verified?"
Duo frowned. "Sure, but I thought you said you'd believe me."
Heero studied his face yet again, as if trying to discern whether or not he was being told the truth. "I do trust you," he said after a long moment.
Smiling and relieved, Duo leaned forward to embrace his lover tightly. He was elated by this turn of events. Heero had proved that he wouldn't physically hurt him again and had sworn that he never would. And though Heero hadn't actually said he believed him, he still had his trust. And he really hadn't lied about everything, because his initial reason for securing a look alike was for the reasons he'd stated. Pulling back, he firmly planted his lips on Heero's mouth and give him a smoldering, toe curling kiss, so relieved and grateful that Heero was giving them another chance. He vowed to himself to make everything up to Heero once the situation with L2 was resolved and never lie to his lover again.
He was quite pleased when his handsome, sexy boyfriend responded immediately to his kiss, pulling him even closer and sliding his fingers beneath his braid to cradle his head and turn it slightly to deepen the kiss.
They reluctantly separated, gasping for air. But Heero didn't stay idle long. He immediately moved his hot and moist lips to his exposed neck. "Missed you," Heero murmured, his lips tickling the sensitive skin.
Duo moaned and gave himself over to the wonderful sensations those wonderful lips aroused. Funny, he didn't feel quite as tired as he'd been a short while ago. There was not thought of resisting when Heero lowered him onto the sofa's cushions and readjusted their bodies until his lover was lying on top of him and between his legs. And then those talented lips continued to keep his mind and body warming, making him feel more hopeful by the moment about their future. He was floating in a realm of pleasure and possibilities up until the moment the button of his black jeans popped open and he was jerked back into reality. He suddenly recalled he hadn't had a shower in two days. Putting his hands on Heero's shoulders, he tried to push him away, but the body above him moved only slightly and the wandering lips never stopped moving as they continued southward down his chest.
"Wait, Heero." Though he was being serious, his words came out like a passion-filled moan. Heero paused only to flick his tongue over a nipple. "Listen, I don't want to stop, but I haven't had a shower in two days."
Heero looked up at him with a growing smile. "Sounds perfect." Then grabbing Duo by the arm, his lover pulled him off the sofa and led him out of the living room and towards the back of the apartment.
Kissing and fondling, the two stumbled happily into the master bedroom together. Duo shed his jacket and let it drop to the floor, then grabbed the bottom of his shirt and pulled it over his head. Heero chuckled. "Some things never change," he said with a glance at the discarded jacket. He was no doubt thinking about the past, when he'd been less than concerned about where his clothes fell at the end of the day when he and Heero had roomed together during the war.
Looking around the room, Heero said, "I thought your bedroom would be decorated in a modern style, like the rest of the apartment."
Duo glanced at his room, finding comfort in the tall bed covered with a mint green down comforter. The colorful, handwoven rug on the floor had been made in India, on it rested his favorite over stuffed chair and the tall reading lamp. It was his favorite place to read, other than in bed. Against the left wall sat a maple case he used as bookshelves. It was packed full with his favorite books. His dresser, also maple, sat against the opposite wall. And across from his bed was a large flat-screen T.V. "I wanted this room to be all about comfort," he replied. "Didn't you sleep in here last night?"
"No. I stayed in the guest room... with Taylor."
Duo couldn't help but snicker. Though his double was excepting of his sexual orientation, he was sometimes weirded out by it as well. "I'll bet he was a barrel of laughs."
Heero turned to him and began to slide his already unbuckled belt out of the loops. "I don't want to talk about Taylor right now. Let's get into the shower and then I'm going to take you to bed."
Duo melted into Heero's arms. "Sounds good," he mumbled as his lips attached themselves to any bit of exposed skin they came into contact with.
It took a bit longer than expected, but the two men eventually made in into the brightly lit bathroom. While Heero pulled off the rest of their clothing, Duo reached over and turned on the shower. Once their clothes had been discarded on the floor and the water temperature just how he liked it, they were ready to get into the shower. And despite the distraction, Duo remembered something important. "Wait." Blushing with embarrassment, he reached into the shower and pulled something out from behind the curtain. "Sorry. I know this isn't very attractive but I don't want to get my hair wet tonight." Having said that, he wound his braid around his head and eased the plastic cap over it. He gave Heero an apologetic smile even though the other man seemed to be fighting a smile.
Without further ado, they stepped into the shower and came together for a long, wet kiss under the warm spray of water. They lathered their hands with soap and began washing each other, slick hands gliding smoothly over firm, wet flesh. It was both relaxing and erotically titillating. Duo almost came, twice, but each time he stood at the brink of orgasm Heero changed tactics, holding him off. He got the idea his lover wanted to wait until they were in bed. So be it, he thought. He just hoped he could stay awake long enough to enjoy it.
It felt wonderful to have Heero's hands running over his body once again, and it was soothing enough to remind him how tired he was. In his current blissful state, the urge to tell Heero he loved him was overwhelming, but for some reason the words just wouldn't come out. Maybe it was because he was beyond tired. Or perhaps it was Heero, who was proving once again to be a distraction. But beyond those reasons, saying he lover Heero out loud would cement his heart, irrevocably, on Heero. If something went wrong, like his being arrested as a marauder, he didn't know if he would survive if Heero washed his hands of him.
He opened his eyes when the hot stream of water was suddenly cut off and Heero nudged him out of the shower. They made quick work of drying off and Heero playfully hustled him into the bedroom and playfully tossed him onto the bed. He only had only a scant moment to prepare himself before Heero jumped onto the mattress, grinning for all he was worth. His lover pressed against him and immediately put his hands and lips to work on his flesh once again.
"Do you have what we need?" Heero asked, barely pausing.
"Top drawer, beneath the boxers," Duo answered, pointing to the small, left hand drawer at the top of his dresser.
Heero kissed his shoulder before rolling over and slipped out of the tall bed to retrieve the tube of lube and a condom. He returned quickly, but paused a moment at its edge of the mattress to gaze at his lover, lying completely naked and stretched out on the bed, more than ready and waiting for what was about to happen. Reaching down, the former Wing Zero pilot stroked himself, apparently hoping to ease some of the ache that Duo was likewise experiencing.
From the signals Heero was giving, Duo was pretty sure he was going to be the receiver tonight. He didn't really care, but he'd be damned if he was going to be passive, even if he was tired. He smiled at Heero as the man climb on the bed again, letting him know without words that he looked forward to making love with him.
It took only until Heero took him in his arms before things heated up again and his lover began to prepare him for their joining. When they were both ready for the next step, Duo pushed Heero back and settled himself on top of him, leaving Heero blinking at the suddenness of having their positions reversed.
Leaning forward, Duo gave his lover's lips a quick kiss, then made his way towards a tempting earlobe, teasingly tugging on it with his teeth. "Just relax and let me do the work tonight, all right?"
"You looked tired earlier. I just assumed..." Heero was interrupted when a finger settled over his lips.
"I'm feeling somewhat rejuvenated," he said with a sly grin. His eyelids were drooping, but her hoped Heero would think he was trying to be sexy instead of sleepy.
Heero sought his lips once more before capitulating and lying back, resting his head on the pillow. Wearing a smile of contentment, he gave Duo a go-ahead nod.
Once seated, Duo forced himself to proceed slowly, wanting to watch and catalogue all the expressions that crossed his lover's face. Heero's smouldering gaze never left his face as they moved together, and once again Duo felt like the luckiest man alive. He did everything in his power to please the other man and making their coupling last as long as possible. Yet all too soon there was no denying their need for each other, and the speed of their lovemaking increased until they both fell into rolling waves of pleasure. Still breathless, words of gratitude and reassurance were whispered, binding them closer than ever as lovers.
After cleaning up, the light was turned out and the covers pulled up to ward off the chill. Duo lay on his left side, spooned up to Heero's back. He was exhausted, his reserve of energy completely spent. With his head resting on Heero's shoulder, his free arm lying limp over his lover's waist and upper leg draped over his thigh, he listened to the patter of Heero's breathing as it slowed. His eyes were now too heavy to remain open, and he fleetingly wondered why he hadn't fallen asleep yet. Pondering the reasons for still being awake he concluded that Heero hadn't been fully satisfied with how he'd answered his questions. Had his lover bought his excuses, lock, stock and barrel? Well, they weren't really excuses, he comforted himself thinking that was so. There was a grain of truth in everything he'd said.
The familiar thought came to him again that starting a relationship with Heero with all he had going was nothing short of insane. Herro was intelligent, astute and quick to act, and it was only a matter of time before the man figured out that things weren't adding up. He could only hope that with the marauders and the mystery of Relena's disappearance and now Wufei's, would keep Heero too preoccupied to put his renown analytical powers to work and realize that there was not one stealth ship, but two, and that he, Quatre and Trowa had been involved since the beginning. The backlash from such a discovery would be monumental. He'd lose Heero for sure, and he didn't know if he could handle that loss again.
"How are we going to do this?"
The suddenness of Heero's question startled him. He chuckled, a bit embarrassed by having reacted with a jerk. "Sorry. I thought you were asleep."
"What are you thinking about?"
There was a long stretched-out moment before Heero answered. "You and I. I've been spending a lot of time in space and in Europe. You're here in New York. How are we going to make this relationship work?"
Duo sigh was followed immediately by a large yawn. "I'm not sure, Heero," he answered with a yawn. "I suppose we take it a day at a time. We've both have jobs and responsibilities that keep us where we are at the moment. We can only make do with what we've got and see where the future takes us."
Heero turned in his arms to look Duo in the eyes. Appearing thoughtful, he said, "I suppose you'll want to keep our relationship a secret, seeing that Taylor has everyone thinking you're straight."
Duo pondered the idea of coming out and telling the world that Heero was his lover. It was a wonderful thought, but the timing was all wrong. With reluctance he answered, "You're right. Tay's got everyone thinking I'm straight, which gets me a lot of jobs posing as a lady's man. I'm not ashamed of you or of my feelings for you, Heero, but if it comes out right now that I'm gay, I might have to look for another profession."
"And that would be a bad thing?"
Duo lifted up his head up off of Heero's shoulder to look him in the eyes. "You think my job is stupid, don't you?"
"I wouldn't say that."
"But you think it, don't you?"
A long space of silence was his lover's answer. With a sigh Duo continued, "It's not like I'm going to be doing this forever. A model's career is almost always short lived. I'm in it for the money, Heero, not the notoriety, the attention or to be famous. I could easily live without those things."
"What do you want to do after modeling?"
"Maybe go back to school. I think I'd like to study photography."
There was a pause before Heero spoke again. "I like the photograph you have above your fireplace."
Duo chuckled. "I'll bet you do." The photograph entitled Self Portrait, depicting his naked backside covered only with his long braid, had garnered a lot of attention and praise from his guests.
"I think you could be very successful as a photographer."
The long-haired man blinked in surprise. "What? You're not going to tell me I'd be a great asset to the Preventers? That I'm not wasting my life away on something as trivial taking pictures?"
Heero shook his head. "No. I think I learned my lesson five years ago. I tried to persuade you then to join the Preventers, even after you said you didn't want to. And look where that lead us. No, I'm not going to tell you how to live your life, but you can't blame me for hoping you'll make some room in it for me."
"Heero." Duo tenderly whispered the other man's name just before he leaned forward to kiss him. What Heero just said did more towards cementing their current relationship than anything else he could have said or done. Moving to lay on top of the other man's body, the braided man settled between Heero's legs, intending to prove to his lover just how much he needed him in his life. He set aside his worries about Heero's reaction if ever found out about his covert operations, determined to hide the truth as long as possible, forever if need be, in order to keep the man beneath him in his arms. He intended to make love with Heero again, but the moment he put his face into Heero's neck, he fell asleep, proving the old adage, the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.