Disclaimer: I have never, nor will I ever, own Gundam Wing and all things contained within. I do, however, own this fic, which I have painstakingly typed out from scratch.

Pairing: 2+1+2, 3+4
Rating: PG-13
Genre: AU
Warnings: Attempts at humour? OOC?

Notes: Feedback is always appreciated and will earn you my never-ending gratitude. It’s a little slow, but Heero is coming soon, I promise. Lots of thanks to Dark Tenchi for the great beta! *glomps*

Summary: When Duo tires of hopeless date after date after date, he decides to get Quatre, an artist, to draw him a picture of his Mr. Perfect. Never would he have thought that Mr. Perfect actually existed…

Picture Perfect
Chapter 1
by Seaa

Duo stared at the chattering girl in front of him, trying to force an interested look on his face. Too much make up, not enough brains, and an incredibly boring way of speaking – who even knew what the hell she was talking about? Oh, did he have a way with the girls, or what?

Well, there did happen to be a scattering of guys in his ‘Bad Dates’ history, he mused, while staring at her blankly. But they were mostly few and far between, for a reason that eluded him. Perhaps it was the way he was going about things? With the girls, he didn’t have to go after them, they just came to him. He grinned slightly, and the girl beamed back at him.

Duo looked down at his plate of half-eaten food. Maybe he should start raising his standards. But hell, he wasn’t going to lie, it was so damned simple when possible dates practically threw themselves at him… and they always seemed so nice when he decided to ask them out. But he never seemed to have any luck on first dates. At all.

Oh, he had thought things were about to change… she was pretty enough; the fluorescent lights at the club had been flattering to her. She had laughed at everything he had said, but now he realised – and boy, did it hurt – that she hadn’t said more than a word at that time. Well, she certainly was making up for that now.

“-was just so amazing, y’know?”

Was it him? Was he not trying hard enough to make any of his potential relationships work? Or was there something about him that repelled all the semi-attractive, intelligent females – strike that, people – in his part of the world? There had to be someone, right?

“Duo? Duo?”

Gods, was she still talking? Duo flashed her a stunning smile, and she beamed back, as she had done the last couple of times. Damn it to hell, now, he’d forgotten her name. What was it? Pansy? Petal? Polly?

“So I was talking to Melissa, and she was all, ‘Petunia, c’mon, I so don’t agree with you!’ but she’s so wrong, y’know? Y’know?”

Ah. Nice timing. Petunia, then. Duo wasn’t sure, she seemed more like a Polly to him. Still, if she said her name was Petunia, then so be it. Then again, he didn’t really want to be up at the alter saying ‘I take thee Petunia’, that didn’t sound right. He’d much rather be saying a name like-

“Duo? C’mon, what do you think?” Damn, her voice was so whiny!

“Oh, Petunia, of course I agree with you!” He forced another grin, which seemed to pacify her. Why, oh why hadn’t he taken that cute blond’s offer?

The guy was cute, he remembered, nice hair, nice smile – Ah, he remember why he had refused. The guy had looked too much like Quatre. And he definitely wasn’t comfortable with the thought of making out with a guy that looked – and sounded – like his best friend. No, there was something terribly… wrong, with that image.

Dammit. This was just stupid. He thought back to last night, when he had first asked her out. He had thought she was the best person in the whole damn place. Except… he narrowed his eyes, trying to remember the person that had caught his eye once…

It was before the ‘blond that looked like Quatre’, and after Petunia and her friends had latched onto him. The guy had been about the same age as Duo, he remembered that. A dark haired, blue-eyed guy that had watched Duo, as Petunia and her friends surrounded him. The club had been dark, so Duo couldn’t exactly remember how the guy looked. But when he had looked straight into Duo’s eyes, the brunette could have sworn his heart had jumped straight into his throat. And no guy - no, no person, had ever made him feel that way.

Well, it was too late now. He hadn’t gone over to ‘Mr. Blue Eyes’ then, and instead of a possible hot date with the gorgeous guy, he was stuck with Miss ‘can’t shut up even to eat’.

Duo glared half-heartedly at Petunia’s hardly touched plate of food. He didn’t quite understand why some girls seemed to think men found it appealing when they ordered the most expensive thing on the menu, only to end up picking at it and proclaim that they were ‘watching their figure’ and ‘couldn’t simply eat another bite’.

Just then, his cell phone rang, putting a pause to the girl’s endless line of speech. There was nothing wrong with talking, he loved doing it himself, but why did she have to pick such inane topics to babble about? He flipped on his phone, whispering a silent thanks to whoever had decided to call him.

“Hello? Duo speaking!”

“Duo!” He grinned, he could recognise Quat’s voice anywhere. “Oh, so sorry to interrupt your date, by the way, how’s it going?”

“Great,” he bit out, and he could almost imagine Quatre wincing.

“That bad, huh?”

“Oh, yeah,” he smiled slightly at the girl, who was fidgeting, then told Quatre a quick ‘hold on’ before looking at her again.

“This might take quite a while, and it’s rather important. Petunia, if you’d excuse me?”

She giggled – why? It wasn’t even funny! – and nodded vigorously. He rose from his chair, and made his way to the outside of the ridiculously expensive restaurant they were in. As soon as he was safe, he burst out, “Lord, I could kiss you for calling me, Quat. How’d you know I’d need saving?”

“Well, you do know that the odds are sort of against you now, don’t you?”

“Yeah, rub it in, rub it in. So, what’s up?”

“Oh, I’m just checking, you know I’m having a housewarming next week, right? I’ve finally managed to clean my new place up enough. I’m guessing that you won’t be bringing a date.”

Duo grinned. “You guessed right. And you will be inviting people with brains, right?”

Quatre laughed, the sound breezing through the phone. “You know, Duo, have you ever thought that if you stop looking for dates, the right person might just… bump into you?”

Duo sighed, an image of cobalt eyes entering his mind. “Yeah, but if I stop looking, I might miss… the perfect person, you know? And I’d hate to think I gave that opportunity up just because I was tired of looking.”

“That doesn’t mean that you should pick people that throw themselves at you – that really doesn’t bode well for a long-term relationship. As you should very well know by now.”

Duo fidgeted uncomfortably. “Quat, save the relationship lecture when I’m not hiding from the worse date ever. Anyway, how are things going with your so called Mr. Perfect?” The change of subject was swift, and either Quatre didn’t notice, or let it slip. Duo knew very well that ever since he met one particular Trowa Barton, Quatre would practically jump at any chance to talk about him.

“Things are great! Trowa is so amazing! Things are just… well, it’s going really, really well.”

Duo groaned in jest. “You sound like you’ve fallen head over heels over toes, Quat. I’ve never heard you quite so… sappy.”

Quatre coughed. “You can judge for yourself - he’ll be coming to the party too. He said he’d be bringing some friends of his, too. I haven’t met them, but, well-”

“Any friends of Mr. Perfect are welcome to meet me…”

He could almost hear the smile creep into Quatre’s voice. “Maybe Trowa has better taste than you.”

Duo laughed obligingly. “He must, he picked you for a boyfriend, didn’t he?”

Quatre chuckled slightly. “And now I wonder why you haven’t found the right person. You can be downright charming when you want to.”

Duo shook his head. “Apparently just not to the right people, huh. He sighed as a pang of obligation swept over him. “Guess I’ve gotta go now, Quat.”

“Of course,” Quatre said breezily, “Can’t keep dear Petunia waiting, now can we?”

Duo groaned. “Now would be a good time to remind me why I still go on dates?”

“Too much hope, Duo. Too much hope – but a lot of bad luck.”

Duo muttered his agreement. “Maybe there’s like a love curse on me.”

Quatre laughed. “You only wish! I’ll see you tomorrow; meet you for lunch or something, okay? I’ll give you a call.”

“You do that, Quat.” He listened as the line went flat, and put away his phone. Time to face the music.


Duo tossed his jacket onto the coat rack as he entered the apartment, shutting the door behind him. He popped open a bottle of wine and poured himself a glass, reclining on the sofa and working out the kinks in his back. He was alone, of course. He had let the girl down at the end of the date, kindly, but firmly. He didn’t want her getting the wrong message and tracking him down for another date. Duo shuddered. Definitely not. One date with her was enough to last him a lifetime.

He sighed, flopping down into the cushions. Letting his mind wonder, his thoughts drifted once again to that mysterious guy. Duo could have sworn that the man hadn’t taken his eyes off Duo once that night… Dammit, dammit to hell. Maybe his night wouldn’t have ended this way if he’d only gone up to the guy and talked to him a little.

Quatre was probably right, he should really stop dating those fawning girls that always seemed to gather round him when he went clubbing. Nothing good ever came out of those dates. But that guy… Duo shivered. Good vibes just emitted from him.

He took a sip of his glass – he never drank much on dates, preferring to remain sober, though there had been moments when it had been tempting to ask for a couple of shots of vodka and drink his ass off – and proceeded to check his messages.

There was just one – from Quatre.

“Hey Duo! Decided that since it wasn’t urgent, I wouldn’t interrupt your time with… Petunia, wasn’t it? Lunch tomorrow, same time, same place. Let me know if there’s a problem with that. Bye!”

Duo shook his head. For all that the guy was the best friend someone could ask for, he was way too chipper. Then again, he had a great job, and now, a great guy, so he really had no reason to be anything but that.

Quatre was the eternal optimist, even when back when they were kids hanging together. Duo could still remember that one time when Quatre had stepped on glass. He’d screwed up his tiny face, trying not to cry, and whispered that at least he hadn’t ruined his shoes.

It was… endearing. Stupid, sometimes, but extremely endearing. Duo grinned.

He closed his eyes, unbuttoned the top two buttons on his shirt, and tossed back another swallow of wine. The blue eyes came into his mind again, and he thought randomly that they seemed to get more gorgeous each time. He drifted in and out of sleep, and even knowing that he was going to kick himself later for falling asleep couldn’t stop him. The lure of sleep, and perhaps even a dream of those eyes, overcame any other arguments and lulled him into slumber.


Duo spotted Quatre sitting at the corner of the small cafe, their usual seat, of course. The blond grinned, and waved enthusiastically. There was no need to, there never was, but hey, it was almost like tradition.

“Hey,” he said, sliding into the seat opposite Quatre. “I’m not late, am I?”

“No – I’m early.”

Duo smiled. “I figured. One of these days I’m gonna actually try to beat you here.”

“Good luck…” They both chuckled, and Duo studied Quatre carefully.

“So? You’re not having lunch with Mr. Perfect?”

Quatre semi-scowled. “You don’t have to call him that, he has a name.”

Duo shrugged in apology. “Seems as fitting a name as any to me.”

Quatre relented. “Fine. But don’t you think he has such a nice name?

Duo laughed. “Sounds a pretty average name to me, but then again, I’m not in love with the guy.” He winked, smirking. “It sounds like Quat’s getting some real good lovin’, huh?”

Quatre coloured slightly. “I am not!”

“Oh, then don’t worry, Quat, I’m sure you’ll get some soon.”

Quatre stuck his tongue out and turned his attention to his coffee.

Duo grinned, and gestured for the waitress to come over towards their table.


“You doing anything now?”

Duo looked up from his now-empty plate and shook his head. “It’s the weekend. I’m all free. Why?”

“I’ve just completed that art project I was working on. I can’t do without my best critic.”

“You only have to ask.” Duo finished counting out the tip for their food and put it on the table. “Ready to go?”

Quatre pushed his chair back and grabbed his coat. “Let’s.”

They walked leisurely out the café doors, and Duo followed Quatre as they walked on the sidewalk.

Although Duo had walked past Quatre’s apartment block many times before, Quatre had refused to let him into the apartment itself until the blond deemed it worthy for outside inspection. So when they finally ended up at the place, and Quatre opened the door, he wasn’t quite sure what he was expecting.

“Wow,” he muttered. “What have you been doing to this place?”

Quatre beamed. “Nice, huh? Not a bad job, even if I do say so myself.”

It was quite apparent to Duo what Quatre had been working so hard to accomplish in the last couple of weeks. The whole place was impeccable tidy, and everything seemed to match perfectly with everything else.

“Trowa helped me to pick out most of the stuff here,” Quatre mentioned, walking into the room.

Duo followed him in. “What, you trust him to help you, but not your best, best friend?”

Quatre turned to look at him, and relaxed when he realised Duo was simply kidding.

“Friendship doesn’t mean you have good taste, Duo.”

“Fine,” Duo conceded, “But you have to realise that this means that this means I’ll be coming here to bother you more often.”

Quatre had wandered into one of the back rooms, and he called back, “We wouldn’t still be friends if I hadn’t learned to ignore you so well!”

“Hey!” Duo protested.

“Come here!”

Duo ambled into the room. “Nice,” he commented, looking at Quatre’s newest masterpiece.

Some years ago, looking at something that nicely done, and by Quatre, no less, would have caused his jaw to drop, but now that he’d gotten used to the fact that Quatre was a remarkable artist… The shock had faded somewhat, and there was just appreciation of his friend’s talent.

And, all right, a smidgen of jealousy.

The piece of artwork was a swirl of color, and when viewed from some distance, a shape of a person was depicted. It gave off a very ethereal image, and Duo allowed his approval to shine through his eyes.

“Great job.”

“Thanks!” Quatre smiled softy as he looked at the piece of canvas again.

“Are you going to put this in the gallery for sale?”

“No.” A light stain covered Quatre’s cheeks. “I’m giving it to Trowa.”


Quatre murmured a yes. “He was the inspiration, anyway.”

Duo ran his fingers lightly across the base of the canvas, before turning to stare straight at Quatre.

“I’m hoping this Trowa knows how damn lucky he is.”

A ghost of a smile flickered across Quatre’s face. “He’s not as lucky as I am.”

Duo shook his head. “Hopeless. It’s utterly hopeless.”

“So, it’s good, then? It has your seal of approval?”

Duo laughed. “When has anything done by you not had it?”

“That doesn’t mean it’s not nice to know.” Quatre gazed at the clock, and swore quietly. Duo rose his eyebrows.

“Shut up,” his friend muttered. “I’m late! I’m supposed to be at the gallery in five minutes. I’ve gotta go!” He ran out of the room.

“Have fun!” Duo called. “I guess I’ll be letting myself out?”

“If you will? Sorry about this, Duo.” Quatre rushed back in. “You can stop by at the gallery later on if you want. I’ve got a few new pieces I thought you might like. Saved them just for you.”

“Thanks, Quat. I’ll be there.”

“Okay, gotta go, bye!”

Quatre flew out the door of the apartment, and Duo blinked. He turned around, and gazed at the painting, before shaking his head and snorting.

“Damn, but life would be good if I was in love with him.”

Duo sighed, and walked out of the room.

The both of them had been friends for what seemed like forever. Quatre had been there for Duo through everything, and he liked to think that he had returned the favour.

But never once had there been a spark of anything but pure friendship. How perfect it would have been had there been more.

But there wasn’t, and now Quatre had Trowa, and Duo was alone.

Oh, but he wasn’t bitter. Not one bit. He was perfectly happy for his friend. And of course, he was willing to wait and bide his time until his perfect person decided to make an entrance.

Yes, sarcasm was different from lying.

“You better make an appearance soon,” he said out loud. “You hear me? You better get your butt into my life soon, or I’m gonna be ma~ad when you do pop up.” Duo paused, and grinned. “Oh, I guess I could be persuaded not to be too angry, if you promise to be extra yummy looking.”

The silence that greeted him was almost mocking, and the utter absurdity of what he had been doing hit him. Duo laughed, shook his head in ridicule, and made his way out of the apartment.


A few blocks down, a brown haired, cobalt eyed man paused in the middle of typing on his keyboard. When nothing happened, he shook his head and continued. He could have sworn he heard something… was he meant to be somewhere else? Was he late for something?

…Had someone called for him?

on to chapter 2

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