WARNING: Very High Angst Lemon, Proceed With Caution, Kleenex Warning
[Sequel to Tragic Secrets; Book 6 of the "Secrets" Arc, Final Installment of arc]
Author: Enigma
Written: October & November, 2000
Cumulative Rating: NC-17
Pairings: (1x2/2x1) (3x4/4x3) (5+S)
Category: Angst, yaoi, AU
Cumulative Warnings: Angst, lemon, yaoi, sap, AU, OOC
Be Prepared: Kleenex Warnings!! also: avoid Colas
DISCLAIMERS: I don't own Gundam Wing or any other anime or TV characters I use here, just the ideas in this story and some characters that are new are truly mine. Any reference to copyrighted material or trademarked goods should be considered an "homage" (yeah, right!) Don't sue me, even the lawyers wouldn't enjoy it, except of course for the Ashe and Jojo characters!
NOTE: Timeframe---after the war has ended and the Gundams were destroyed. //yada, yada, yada// = inner thoughts

Silencing The Secrets
Part 22

Several pairs of eyes fell on Duo who looked as if he'd been struck by lightning. "Verrry funny, Quatre! Very funny! Ha ha, make fun of the kid with the braid! Thanks, your honor, or whatever, but you got tricked on that one, it's these other guys, not us."

"Oh?" The man had a decidedly mischievous look in his eyes, "Really? Let me check my notes, no, sorry, son, but that's the names they gave me."

"All right, funny joke then, Trowa, but enough's enough. Get on with the real deal." Duo looked more than a little lost.

"No joke," Heero smiled turning to kneel in front of Duo who suddenly looked like he was about to pass-out. Heero earnestly looked up at Duo and repeated what he had said in the desert. "Duo, will you stay with me and be by my side for the rest of our lives?"

"…uh …um …huh?" Duo was too shocked to even speak coherently, exactly like that day so long ago when the words were first spoken.

"Duo," he gently lifted his beloved's hand in his own, "will you marry me?" Looking at his suddenly silent fiancé, he slid a ring onto his finger, a single diamond glittering in the center of a band of gundanium alloy. Duo looked at him wide-eyed and shocked, but eventually nodded in agreement. Heero chuckled. "So, is this what it takes to keep you quiet, koi?"

Where anger might have ordinarily burned after such a comment, two violet orbs were wide with awe looking first at the ring then at the man still kneeling before him. "But, Heero, I, well," Duo looked about confused then choked a little, "I wasn't expecting this, I don't have a ring for you."

Heero smiled gently and refused to release the hand that he held as a soft voice spoke up, "That's okay, Duo, I have one for you to use."

He turned to see Quatre's out-stretched hand holding a small velvet box containing an identical band to what he was wearing. Looking from the ring to his best friend to his lover, Duo felt his world start to tilt a little then grabbed hold of his consciousness refusing to give in. "Thanks, Quatre." He smiled and drew his friend in for a quick hug before turning back to Heero who patiently waited. "Geez, Heero, stand up, would ya'?" He hissed quietly to the amusement of those around them. Now Duo kneeled taking Heero's hand in his own, "Well, I'm going to give this a shot," he cleared his throat and asked the most important question of his life, every bit of the love that had finally burst free running through his entire being.

"Heero, will you give me the honor of sharing your name, your home, and your life? Will you marry me?" He slipped the ring onto the waiting finger and even though it was obvious what the answer was, he still felt panic stricken as he waited for one word.

Finally, after the longest second and a half of his life he heard, "Yes, Duo, I will."

A cheer went up from those who knew what had just happened as Heero pulled Duo to his feet and into a fiery kiss. No one in the room, however, was ready for what happened next.

"So, Heero," Trowa asked, a smile touching the corners of his lips though he tried to suppress it. "When do you two plan to get married?"

"What?" Heero, just pulling out of the kiss which meant everything he'd fought for was worth it, was a bit dazed. "I have no idea, Trowa, but thank you for letting me surprise him like this tonight."

"Oh, you're welcome," Quatre smiled, then added, "However, Trowa may have neglected to mention there was a small clause in the agreement to let you do this tonight."

"A 'clause in the agreement'?" Duo asked suspiciously, glancing at Heero who shrugged to indicate his innocence.

"But of course there was a clause!" Quatre grinned in spite of himself. "What kind of a businessman let's his two best friends upstage him like this without a back-up clause?"

Duo paled visibly, fear in his eyes.

"Stop teasing them, Little One, I think you're frightening Duo." Trowa smiled wrapping an arm around Quatre's waist. "Besides, the clause was my idea anyway."

"So true, koi! Sorry for neglecting to point out who has the best ideas on this team!" He kissed his fiancé briefly before finally revealing the secret clause. "The only requirement that was added to the agreement for this tonight was that instead of keeping us waiting forever to see you two get around to getting married, you have to join us tomorrow and we'll make it a double ceremony!" Quatre's eyes glittered happily as he watched his friends' reactions.

Heero Yuy, never phased by being out gunned in battle 50 to 1 suddenly looked a little pale. Duo Maxwell, however, cut to the chase and simply passed-out.

It was dark where Duo was.

Dark, peaceful, and quiet. It was comforting and frighteningly familiar at the same time.

Slowly a voice sank through the darkness. Not just any voice, the only voice. Well, the only voice that held meaning for him any longer.

"Duo, wake up. Please, koi, wake up!" Heero's usually steady voice shook a little.

He tried to open his eyes or say something but couldn't do either one.

"Duo, come on, don't do this to me again, wake up!" Heero's voice was definitely more than a little upset. "Duo! Snap out of it!"

The commanding tone would probably have brought Duo to full attention under normal circumstances, but he was having some trouble getting a grip on why he couldn't wake up. "What's wrong with him, doctor?" Heero's voice trembled, frightening Duo far more than the darkness.

"unnn… heero?" soft and wispy, Duo's voice found it's way out, but Heero didn't hear him.

"He'll be all right, Heero," Duo was fairly certain that was Trowa's voice.

"No, Trowa, he won't be unless he comes out of this soon; he's been out too long!" Heero sounded like he was in pain, but Duo just couldn't claw his way free of the darkness. "This happened before, six months ago when I proposed to him and he almost died! It's happening again, damn it all!" Heero was clearly loosing control.

Duo tried again, he placed all of his energy into speaking and let vision wait a bit. "Heero!" He gasped out loudly enough to be heard and felt himself drawn into strong arms. "It's okay, Heero, I'm okay," he mumbled trying to reassure his usually rock-steady fiancé that all was well. He felt himself clutched firmly to a warm chest and he let himself sink into the sheer bliss of knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that he was safer there than he could ever be anywhere else.

Duo let himself float peacefully there for a moment until he felt something hot and wet touch his face. Was Heero crying? No, couldn't be that, was he himself crying? Duo wasn't sure, but knew he needed to try to break back out into full consciousness. Forcing himself to forego the dubious pleasure of staying where he was, he slowly got his eyes to open once more and found himself staring straight into shockingly teary cobalt-blue eyes filled with love and concern.

"Hey, koi," he managed a small smile.

"Hey, yourself," Heero smiled at him. "You gave me a Hell of a scare there, koibito."

A wan smile touched the edge of his lips as he tried to come up with a suitably smart-ass answer so Heero wouldn't look so distraught. But all he could come up with was something he thought he'd said a million times before, "I'm sorry, Heero, I certainly didn't mean to scare you. Are you all right?" Exhaustion edged the sound of his voice, but at least he could be heard.

Heero smiled warmly, brushing the chestnut bangs out of his eyes, "I'm fine now, koi."

"What happened, Dr. Akheem?" Quatre's voice sounded concerned as well, but Duo felt too tired to look for his friend to try to reassure him as well.

"It would appear, Master Quatre, that his blood pressure is still not regulated enough to counter such a drastic surprise to his system. It dropped quite low, but it is approaching acceptable range now." Akheem smirked a little. "Maybe next time someone should let him in on your little surprises a bit sooner."

"Well, as long as it isn't anything as bad as what Heero feared, we can manage, right, Duo?" Quatre kneeled on the floor next to Heero and was rewarded with a sad grin.

"Sorry for messing up the rehearsal, Q," Duo, finally recalling what all had happened added, "Are you serious about us sharing your wedding?"

"Of course I'm serious, Duo, but only if you aren't going to pass out again." Quatre tried to get some reassurance from Heero on that one, but none was forthcoming.

"Well, okay, since you feel so strongly about it, I'll promise not to pass out as long as Heero promises he won't either." Duo was feeling better if he could tease Heero like that.

"Hn." Heero grunted noncommittally, then acquiesced. "Well, sounds like I'm trapped then. Trowa," he glanced warningly over to his best friend who had unintentionally engineered the current catastrophe, "No more surprises, okay?"

"Of course, Heero. I'm sorry this happened, I totally forgot about the blood pressure problem." Trowa looked abashed and sounded miserable.

"Hey, hey, no sweat," Duo levered himself up on one arm and glanced around noticing they were alone. "What happened to the rehearsal? Did I sleep through the whole thing?"

"Don't be ridiculous, baka," Heero tried to scold him but failed miserably as he smiled too much seeing his lover sit up somewhat. "You were out for about fifteen minutes, we brought you out of the hall so Vash could get Laurel calmed down and let you have some air." Hoping to ease his clearly concerned yet apparently fragile love, he tried to joke a bit but it fell flat. "How could they rehearse with you lying there taking up space?"

"Sorry, won't happen again," Duo tried to stand up. But his body wasn't quite ready; luckily Heero was expecting this and caught him handily, easing him into his arms and back down to sit on the floor.

"Quatre, Trowa, why don't you go check on Laurel? We'll be along in a minute." Heero stared at Duo intently. "Let me make sure he's okay, then we'll join you, just give us a bit."

"No problem, let's go," Quatre commanded. Trowa stood and they walked away, taking Akheem with them.

Alone again, Heero eased Duo back into his arms more firmly. "Are you really okay now, Duo?"

"I'm not sure, Heero." Duo was far more honest when it was just the two of them again. "Are we really getting married tomorrow? Isn't this a bit sudden?"

"Oh, I don't know about that," Heero smiled brushing gentle fingers across the loose braid then deciding to undo it entirely and run his fingers through it since it relaxed them both when he did. "I've loved you for an awfully long time and it did take six months between when I proposed to you to when I got a ring on your finger. Maybe getting married quickly is a good idea, then we can get on with the rest of our lives, ne?"

Purring like a cat, Duo snuggled closer enjoying the feel of his fiancé's loving fingers in his hair, "Well, if you think it's a good idea then I'm all for it, Heero. After all, I trust you to do what's best for both of us."

"Really?" Heero was surprised by the total trust. "What makes you say that, Duo?"

"You've saved my life a hundred times and my sanity even more often, Heero. You do a better job of it than I do lately," Duo smiled reassuringly at Heero and kissed him before adding, "Besides, if I let you make the decisions, then it won't be my fault when I screw up like tonight!"

"Baka! You didn't 'screw up'! We should have at least warned you or something," Heero admitted with a laugh. "By the way, Duo, where did you come up with such an amazing marriage proposal? It was beautiful."

"Oh? You liked it? I read it in an ancient Greek play dedicated to the muse of lyric poetry, Erato. It was beautiful, so I memorized it." Duo shrugged and acted like this was something he'd always done yet it was so very different from what Heero had ever known.

Heero, however, was rapidly coming to love the differences and small surprises they brought to their life together. "Actually, koi, I was especially touched by the line that you wanted to share my name. Seeing how it isn't even my real name, I don't know why that would mean so much to me, but---"

"But," Duo interrupted, "That's exactly why I want to share it. As far as I'm concerned, until now we were both walking around with borrowed names, but if I change mine to 'Duo Maxwell-Yuy', then your name becomes as real as it could possibly get and that makes me very happy."

"I see," Heero commented thoughtfully. "Then as of tomorrow, mine will be 'Heero Yuy-Maxwell' and we will *both* be very happy, won't we?"

"You'd do that for *me*?" Smiling in pleased shock, Duo simply nodded. "Yes, as of tomorrow, we both become 'real', don't we?"

"More 'real' than I've ever been, Duo." Heero captured those lips one last time. "And happier than I've ever been as well."

on to part 23

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