Mr. Tangerine Speedo
Chapter One: Promiscuous Self-destruction in a Flesh Colored Speedo
Quatre was naked. My orange juice went down the wrong pipe and I had to clear my watering eyes to check again. Quatre was naked. In public. Fucking Christ I knew I should have killed Duo back in the last war when I had the opportunity.
"Quatre's looking good," Zechs remarked. "I didn't take him for the speedo type. He's always seemed so much more...conservative."
I had to clench my teeth to keep from yelling and glared at Quatre's mid-section. Speedo. Yes, there was an odd sort of color patch there that blended with his fair skin. An odd sort of entirely too small color patch, I might add. Quatre laughed at something Duo said and twisted toward the braided menace, turning his back fully toward me. The sweet curve of his rump gleamed a creamy sort of orange and, even across the pool as I was, I could clearly see each rounded cheek of his ass strongly delineated by flexing muscle and the single, vertical crevice that disappeared between his legs. That was not a pair of swimming trunks. That was nothing short of pornography. I did not like it.
"I thought Muslims weren't permitted to wear such revealing clothing?" Zechs twirled the ice in his glass. "Not that I'm complaining."
I counted slowly, measuring each breath with each number until I no longer felt the urge to blind Zechs. Preferably with a .30-06 BAR. 500 rounds a minute would do the trick rather nicely.
Wufei grunted in his usual disgust. Someone really should tell him that he looked like a constipated panda when he did that. "Maxwell has corrupted Winner. Bad enough that the idiot was involved, but dragging that Catalonia woman into it was insane. She has no sense of moral decency, never mind modesty."
Catalonia? Quatre tugged at Duo's braid and nudged him playfully with his shoulder. I unclenched my jaws and counted again. "What does Dorothy have to do with it?"
Wufei groaned almost theatrically. "Maxwell put her in charge of Winner's," Wufei grimaced, "make over. Maxwell was late and then took an early lunch, accomplished absolutely nothing all twenty minutes he was in the office, and then they went shopping." Wufei's tone of voice was absolutely correct. Duo and Dorothy taking Quatre shopping was a sign of the next apocalypse. "Barton, I insist that you join Preventers immediately so that I can have a useful and, more importantly, sane partner. Maxwell is impossible."
"Shopping. Quatre went shopping. For a make over. With Duo and Dorothy." Oh God. Romefellar might as well be crawling from their graves with a bakers dozen of mobile doll transport carriers.
"Apparently he has put himself 'on the market'. That is a direct quote. And, as such, he requires a different look He is convinced that he's only attractive to gold-diggers and pedophiles." Wufei did his panda with blocked bowels grunting thing again. "He should permit his eldest sister to find an appropriate match for him. It's the proper thing to do since his parents cannot make the marriage contract for him. These dating rituals of Maxwell's will only lead to trouble."
On the market? My little Quatre was....
No. Not on my watch.
Quatre and Duo finished their impromptu shoving match with Quatre facing the pool. Some guy with slicked back, black hair popped out of the water at the edge and looked directly up at Quatre. There was no way in hell he was looking at Quatre's face. Not from that angle. No, that pool shark was drooling over amply displayed male parts in Quatre's speedo. And Quatre was smiling at this weasel. Smiling! Duo nudged Quatre's biceps, winking and laughing. Quatre blushed all the way down to the low-riding waistband of his speedo, then laughed as well. Pool Shark reached up and ran his slimy hand along Quatre's leg. Quatre grinned and Duo laughed again.
"Barton? Are you ill?"
"I'm fine, Wufei."
It was obvious that the Maganacs were falling down on the job and Quatre needed a keeper, one that would not encourage him down the path of promiscuous self-destruction in a flesh colored speedo.
"Are you certain? You're red in the face. Are you getting heat stroke?"
"It's November and we're indoors. How could Trowa get heat stroke?" Zechs sipped his drink and frowned. "That's Tobias Schilling ogling Quatre. He's bad news."
I put my glass down before I could crush it. "Bad news? How?"
"He's something of a player. He likes them rich, young, and innocent." Zechs shrugged. "Winner is a gundam pilot. I'm sure he'll be fine."
This Tobias Schilling polecat had exactly three seconds to find himself someone else's rich, young, and innocent blonde to play with.
Wufei sent Zechs a death glare. "None of your games, Merquise. Barton is having enough of a fit as it is."
"I am not having a fit." No one was listening to me.
"But Wufei, love, he turns such interesting shades of red."
Wufei outright snorted in disgust and leveled a glare at Zechs. Good. "First of all, Merquise, I am not your love. Secondly, your cruelty is not the least bit humorous. Thirdly, I am not your love!"
Zechs shrugged it off with a smirk. "Where is Heero? I thought he'd at least have enough sense to keep a leash on Duo."
Wufei made a stronger disgust noise. "The man is besotted. I never thought I'd see Yuy brought so low. One can only hope this is a temporary form of insanity."
Usually, the Wufei Duo vaudeville routine was amusing even when one of the comedians was elsewhere, but at the moment, I was inclined to agree with Wufei. Heero had to have been overexposed to Duo's insanity germs. Someone should make a vaccine. Duo said something to Quatre that had him blushing from the roots of his blonde hair to the tips of his cute little toes, and then Duo shoved him into the water, almost directly into Tobias Schilling's arms.
"Barton, where are you going?" Wufei demanded. "Wait, that's my towel!"
"Heya, Tro! What's--ack!" Duo hit the water with a satisfying splash and, incidentally, landed directly on top of Tobias Schilling's oily head. It was completely accidental. Really.
I fished Quatre out and wrapped the towel around him. He coughed and blinked. "Trowa?"
I nodded and tugged the top of the towel up a bit, to cover his collar bones.
He shoved at the towel, pulling it down around his waist. Water dripped from his hair to trail along his erect little nipples. Erect little nipples, I might add, that everyone could plainly see. He was obviously cold, so I put the towel around his shoulders again. "Are you all right?"
He seemed a bit confused. "Trowa, what?" The towel was thrown off. "I thought you hated me."
I picked up the towel and wrapped it around him again. "I could never hate you. I thought you hated me."
"Oh, Trowa, I couldn't hate you just because you only think of me as a friend." He took the towel off and handed it to me. Almost every inch of his dripping wet, peach soft skin was out in the open where anyone who cared to look could ogle. And if that leering ogler with the daiquiri didn't knock it off, he wouldn't have any eyes left to ogle with. Quatre smiled up at me. "Yes, I was hurt and disappointed when you told me you weren't gay, but that's not your fault. You're my best friend and I hope you always will be."
Glaring at that bastard with the pink drink had no effect, he was too busy staring at Quatre's ass. "You're my best friend, too, Quatre." I wrapped the towel around him again and tied two corners into a knot.
His fingers worked at the knot. "I don't need your towel. I have one of my own."
"That's okay. It's Wufei's towel. Besides, you're cold."
He laughed at that. "I'm not cold, but thank you for being concerned."
"Perhaps if you had a shirt or a better swim suit. A speedo isn't really you. Wufei won't swim today, you can wear his."
Quatre was frowning. "We're in mixed company so his shorts will go past his knees. They'd be down to my ankles. Besides, shouldn't you ask Wufei before you volunteer his things?"
Down to his ankles? That could only be a good thing. "We are in mixed company. These trunks aren't like you."
He blushed a little bit. "Well, I am going to start dating, so I have to have the proper wardrobe."
Quatre. Dating? Dating as in having dinner with other men and perhaps kissing? It was bad enough hearing this nonsense from Wufei, but to hear it directly from Quatre was worse. "That's a rather large step to take, isn't it?"
He blinked at me, then smiled. "How else and I going to find a mate?"
Mate. As in mating? Quatre having sex. Over my dead body. "You should have one of your sisters arrange a suitable match for you. Agnes would come up with someone good for you."
He laughed. "Agnes would find me a man-hating lesbian and you know it."
As Duo would say, well, duh. That's why I suggested it. Man-hating lesbian plus Quatre equals a mating we all could live with.
"It's sweet of you to worry about me, Trowa, but I'll be fine." He smiled at me again.
"Quatre, how do you plan to attract anyone wearing that ratty towel? Honestly, it looks like something Chang would own." Dorothy Catalonia slid up and whipped the towel off, throwing it in the pool. Duo was right, she is the spawn of Satan. "I have the perfect man to introduce you to. He's well enough off to not be intimidated by you, has a father who's the diplomat of something or other on L3. His nose, by the way, is properly proportioned."
She grinned at me, all fangs and forked tongue. "You know what they say about a man's nose."
I narrowed my eyes at her. "No, I don't."
"The bigger the nose, the larger his equipment." She leered at my face and Quatre's eyes suddenly dropped from my face to his feet with an intense blush.
I glared. "That's a myth."
"I don't quite believe you, Barton. Perhaps we should adjourn somewhere private so that I might check?" The wicked grin would look more in place on professional dominatrix. "By the way, Nicholas is all top, just the way you like them."
Quatre turned bright red. "Dorothy!"
Dorothy laughed. "We're all friends here, Quatre. Trowa isn't interested in your sexual preferences anyway, are you Trowa?"
Quatre, bottom? I could see it now. I couldn't not see it, no matter how much I didn't want to. Sweet Quatre sprawled trustingly on his bed, his pert, untouched, little bottom hiked up where this oversized Nicholas could ravage it and tear it to pieces with his animal rutting.
Quatre elbowed Dorothy in the ribs. "Stop it. She's just trying to get a rise out of you, Trowa, just ignore her."
Not bloody likely. I smiled reassuringly. "Let's go meet Nicholas."
Quatre blushed again. "Well, Trowa--"
Dorothy laughed. "Don't be silly, Quatre can't meet his date for the evening with another man in tow. Run along now, our little Quatre will be just fine. Besides, someone has to sit on Duo and you're the closest one available."
Quatre frowned. "What's going--"
"That bitch!" Duo bellowed. He exploded from the deep end of the pool a few seconds later, like a hairy version of the Loch Ness monster. "I'm gonna kill her!"
Dorothy smirked. "You should sit on him now, Barton, before he kills Relena."
The same Miss Relena, of course, that was hanging off of Heero in a dental floss bikini that was too small to clean a baby's teeth with. Heero looked annoyed by the whole thing, but didn't shake her off. He was striding toward Duo, making her jiggly parts jiggle against him. I think Wufei would agree with me that this constitutes proof positive that Heero is a masochist. I'm not. There's no way in hell I was getting involved. "Heero can sit on him. Let's go meet Nicholas."
Heero stomped right past Duo, which made Relena smirk and Duo pout.
"Trowa, Dorothy is right. I can't meet him with another man in tow, even if we are just friends. I have to do this on my own." He suddenly smiled and patted my forearm reassuringly. "I'm glad you're still my best friend."
"That's why I'm going--"
Heero stormed right up to me, his little twosome of long-haired miscreants drifting right up with him. "Trowa, give me your shirt."
I spared him a 'no' glare and tried to catch Quatre's eyes again. He was too busy gawking at Relena's almost complete lack of modesty. "Quatre, I'm going to--"
Heero had my shirt half off before I'd noticed he'd even moved. "The shirt, Trowa, now!"
"Oh my, look at those abs," Dorothy said. "And he's an acrobat. I think I'm in love."
"He's straight, too." Quatre!
I knocked Heero flat on his ass and tucked my shirt in for good measure.
"Heero!" Nails on a chalkboard style Duo and Relena squeals in stereo.
Heero stood up and rubbed his jaw, then snatched a towel from a passing pool party-goer and wrapped it around Relena. His glare dared her to take it off and she wilted. Too bad Quatre wasn't as easily convinced into doing what was best for him. "Trowa is straight, isn't he." He smirked in pure satisfaction. "Relena, Trowa is straight."
Relena blinked, first at Heero, then at me. Duo started grinning. Dorothy smirked.
Quatre beamed. "What a wonderful idea, Heero!"
"No, it's not." I shook my head emphatically. There was no way in hell.
Duo nodded just as emphatically. "Perfect! Tro, you stud you, don't you think Miss Relena looks like a complete babe in her new bikini?"
Relena was back to blinking at Heero. "Heero?"
Heero smiled at her. "You should spend some time with Trowa, Relena. You'll like him. He's strong, quiet, and very handsome. You like men like that, right?"
Dorothy locked her claws around Quatre's wrist and started tugging him away. He smiled apologetically. I tried to push past Heero, but Duo moved in to block my way. "Quatre, wait--"
"Tro is, let's just say it, he's got the body of a Greek God. He's nothing but muscle and the way he can move, man, it's like poetry!" Duo waved his hands around my chest like some evil little auctioneer trying to sell off a prized angus bull. One, I did not appreciate feeling like a piece of meat on sale for Relena and, two, Duo needed to get the hell out of my way before I pushed him in the pool again.
"Have fun with Miss Relena, Trowa. I'll see you later!" Quatre gave me a little wave and disappeared.
Duo, that traitor, started bouncing on the balls of his feet, grinning to beat the band. "And he's got an ass that won't quit and he can tie a knot in a cherry stem with his tongue!"
I'd once seen a small herd of sheep locked in a corral with a coyote in their midst. I now knew exactly what they felt like.
Heero added an awkward little pat on her shoulder. "Trowa is a great place for you start dating. He'll take very good care of you and I think your gentle heart and your kindness would be good for him."
Relena's eyes had the same kind of sheep-terror panic in them. "But--"
"C'mon, Lena, you'll just love Tro when you get to know him. He's a great guy! He's just like Heero, only taller and straight! What more can you ask for?" Duo glomped me and grinned.
I didn't know whether to be insulted or to just cut my losses and run like hell. "I don't need anyone to--"
Heero went in for the kill. He did his do it for the poor wounded soldier pretty please look. Relena went down like a sack of potatoes from the high wire. "Well, Trowa has always been nice to me."
Dating Relena. Me. Knowing Quatre, he would suggest we double date. I would have to sit at some overly expensive table in some restaurant that charges enough per plate to feed a small country with a woman who was madly in love with one of my good, not to mention gay, friends while my best friend and this Nicholas person made goo-goo eyes at each other and shared bits of food off of each others plates until this Nicholas jerk took Quatre off to his den of sexual deviance and forced his freakishly large cock into poor Quatre's tender, virginal body.
"Tro, you need to breathe man." Duo slapped me on the back. "That's it, deep breaths. In and out. In and out. Lena's a seriously hot babe and Queen of Everything, but you don't have to be intimidated, big guy. Just say 'omae o korosu' a few times and she'll melt all over you."
"Duo Maxwell!" Relena slapped him.
Heero sighed. "Master, Relena should date Trowa for Trowa."
It's my opinion that Relena shouldn't date Trowa at all.
"If you're that nervous, Tro, you and Relena can double date with Q and this Nicholas guy." Duo frowned. "Has anyone but the Spawn of Satan ever met this Nicholas guy, anyway? He could be a real jerk and Psycho Dotty wouldn't notice if he's got a big nose. He might not be acceptable for Quatre."
I glared at Duo. Dorothy said that this Nicholas creature had a big nose. "Isn't it a little late to be thinking about that, Duo? You dressed Quatre like some tart."
Duo gaped. "Did you just call Quatre a tart?"
"Quatre is not the speedo type. He should be wearing something like Wufei."
"Damn, Tro, I've known nuns that wore more revealing outfits than Wufei's poolside loungewear. Besides, I wanted to get him shorts like Heero's. I got outvoted."
I forced the muscles in my jaw to unclench. "That's another thing. What were you thinking bringing Dorothy Catalonia into this idiotic makeover idea of yours?"
Heero glared at me and Duo glowered off in Quatre's direction. "This makeover thing wasn't my idea. Oh, no, Mr. I have fantasies came up with it all by himself. I tried to talk him out of it, didn't I Heero?"
Heero shrugged. "I am the one that suggest he call Mistress Dorothy."
Duo pouted. "Heero!"
Heero managed to look chagrined. "I'm sorry, Master, it's a habit."
"Mistress Dorothy? Mistress Dorothy?" Relena put her hands on her hips and nearly fell out of both the towel and her top. "You seem to have left a little something out of your explanation, Heero. How can Dorothy be your Mistress if you're gay?"
Heero, for once in his life, blushed. "I needed someone to teach me how to be a slave. I knew that Duo would be a complete baka as a Master."
"Hey! I am not! You're the one who won't do a damned thing I tell you to do unless I'm being sarcastic or use the words blow and job together in the same sentence! How in the hell does that make me a bad Master? I think I'm a damned good one because I don't beat you for taking over my side of the bed all the time!"
Heero rubbed his temples. "The one time you spanked me, you got one hit in before you had a panic attack and put frozen carrots on my butt."
Frozen carr--no, I didn't want to know.
Relena waved her hand. "Back to the Mistress thing. Heero, why didn't you come to me if you needed something? You know I'd do anything to help you."
"Maybe because he didn't want some pink psycho stalker getting bondage ideas about keeping him locked up in a cage or something, Princess?" Duo could almost, but not quite, out-sneer Wufei when he set his mind to it.
"Master," Heero growled in a tone that promised instant retribution if he wasn't obeyed, "you promised that you would be nice to Relena. She is my friend. Remember?"
Relena smirked at Duo. "Stay out of our conversation, Duo. You are quite obviously no help at all."
Duo's hands curled into fists. "I'll show you no help at all, Relena."
"Enough!" I closed my eyes and counted to five in Mandarin, then Swahili.
Duo grinned, his eyes flicking toward Relena. "Keep it up, Trowa, I think Princess Barbie is eating up this manly little show of yours."
As if I cared what Miss Relena thought of my masculinity. "Quit helping Quatre."
"Damn that boy needs a keeper." Duo shook his head. "Bad. I'm talking real bad. So bad that I'm thinking of a weekly appointment with Dr. FrankenPo for a VD swab up the pee-pee."
Relena frowned. "A what?"
"You know, where they shove a cotton swab up the hole in your penis to check for venereal diseases?"
Relena's hands hit her hips again and her towel hit the concrete. "Duo Maxwell, that's not only inappropriate conversation, it's completely wrong! Quatre would never put himself in that sort of position."
Venereal diseases? Venereal diseases?! Over my cold, dead body. "Where can I find this Nicholas?"
Duo looked impressed. "Whoa, you've been taking growling lessons from Heero, haven't you?"
Relena frowned at me. "Quatre is not only a Gundam pilot, but he's perfectly capable of taking care of himself. He's a very astute person. He needs friends who will care for and support him. He does not need a governess running after him with a nappy and a pacifier to stop him from doing something completely stupid. Unlike some people." She sent Duo the most venomous look I've ever seen outside of the time during the war when Duo stole Wufei's clothing from the locker room and replaced it with a school girl's uniform. It was the same sort of look I planned on sending to this Nicholas, preferably with my fist. "In the mean time, shall we go sit on the balcony where we can see everything and get to know each other? Even if nothing else, you're important to my closest friends." Relena blushed. "I would like to get to know you a bit better."
Heero sent a glare my way. "I will personally make sure that nothing happens to Quatre."
Damned straight nothing'll happen to my Quatre. I would make sure of it.
"Isn't that great, Tro? You got a girlfriend!"
Quatre would be safe from--