DISCLAIMER: Not mine, not making any money, shoo!!

PAIRING: Pre-1x2x1
WARNINGS: None, really.
LYRIC CREDIT: ďOne Way MuleĒ is by Silverchair, off the CD ďDiorama.Ē

NOTE: When I heard this song, I just KNEW I had to write these lyrics for Heero. There is so much Heero symbolism in these lyrics I would have to believe that Daniel Johns is a Heero Yuy fan to have written these. I know he /is/ an emotional soldier however, and thatís probably where this all came from. I tried twice to write this short vignette from an 01 POV, but as it turns out, 02 was able to say it better. Even though this is a Duo POV, you should be able to hear two distinct voices in this due to the lyrics.

For Sharona and Jana, my two biggest fans, and the two biggest Heero & Duo fans I know. Archive away, ladies, if you want it. Anyone else, please ask first.

by Shira

I rememberÖ when I first thought that I might actually be in love with him.

I was down and out, bloody and beaten, and he showed up like a knight in shining armor to help. I thought at first it was merely the emotion of the situation and the adrenaline ripping through me that made me feel the way that I did, but my opinion on that changed quickly. It changed when that part of me that Iíd completely turned off and hidden away suddenly sprang to life, becoming renewed every time I was near him. Oh yeah, he was something back then all right, and that internal gage inside me went off with bells and whistles like never before. My ability to shrug him off and ignore my damaged emotions had completely deserted me as I regarded him in awe, wanting only to be near him, if only for the euphoric feeling that I got when I was.

For the first time in my life, I think I needed someone, like /needed/, from the emotional standpoint. Not like everyone needs a mother or you need someone to take care of you, or you need friends. This was a different kind of need, and one that I canít really explain. I just knew that I needed him, and wanted him to need me too.

Problem was, he was completely brainwashed that /he/ didnít need any of /that/.

/Let my spirit ride on a one way mule/
/Blistered skin in a cold hearted pool/
/Distant emotion hides a concrete wall/
/Naked and anchored Iíll climb right back/
/To you/

But you know, the thing that always has had me so bent out of shape about him is that for the life of me, I just canít figure him out.

/And love me for my mind, coz Iím a dangerous heart/
/When Iíve got time to kill Iím coming back to you/

He distanced himself from me. Really, he distances himself from everyone, but I had noticed then that he seemed to more so with me. It was almost as if he could feel the warmth running through me when we were close, and it scared him. Either that, or he truly didnít like me, but I donít think that was ever the case. Iíve experienced enough people and their personalities to be able to sense when a person honestly and truly doesnít like you, and that is not the feeling that I was getting from him.

I certainly wasnít getting any gushy, head-over-heels warmth from him either, though.

I sensed confusion from him. I felt a deep-rooted loneliness and the desperate need for companionship, though he always pushed it away. Still does, and itís a year later and we are much better friends now than the first time I noticed that I liked him. I feel a fear rolling off him, a fear of becoming attached. A fear that he is not good enough, even though to me, he is the best. Something, someone, I think, has really played with his emotions and he is afraid to let anyone in. I know what thatís like. Iíve been the same way many times, having been hurt by people, and usually through no fault of their own, but hurt all the same. Itís a lot easier to just turn your emotions off. Itís much less stress to simply smile and pretend that there is nothing bothering you, even when inside you are being torn to shreds. Eventually the pain does go away, when you start to actually believe that smile, and your heart gets dulled to the sharpness of the pain so that it is only a weak throbbing that is easier to discount. Eventually that smile becomes as hard and strong as a cement wall, encased around your soft insides, hiding them from any more abuse.

Thatís why I know heís special. Because way back then, when I was as emotionally entombed as I have ever been, he crashed through my barrier, and without even trying. My wall was no match for him, even though he intentionally did nothing.

I just wish I knew what was spinning inside his head when he looks at me with those icy blue eyes of his, making me weak in the stomach the way he does.

/Distant memories in a cage by my bed/
/Viscid dreams stick to holes in my head/
/But a patient career of sleep in a Sunday dress/
/Rides my wake/

In spite of the effort that he expends to make himself believe that he doesnít need people though, I know he knows better. I know he admits it, to himself at least, that having someone would beÖnice. Gratifying. Dare I say it, comforting? I think he actually does like being around me, though anyone else might not see it. Itís the subtleties in his personality that make me think this Ė the way his eyes suddenly have to dart away when they meet mine, or the way he fidgets now when we are together. Itís been a very gradual change, one that most people wouldnít have detected, but I have noticed it. Itís a big part of my job to notice things, and he is hard for me not to notice. Even if it wasnít, I would still notice. I canít be within a hundred feet of him without going all fluttery inside, and the longer we know each other, the bigger the butterflies are getting. God, I hope I donít do anything stupid and embarrass him. Or me.

The other thing that keeps me wondering so much is the fact that there have been more than enough occasions for him to just bail out on this entire road show, but he has stayed. OK, yeah, so have the rest of us, but it was different for him. He nearly died at the end of the war, and believe it or not, I think that left an impression on him. Heíd never admit it in a million years, but I think it scared him, as he sat face to face with his own death out there, trying to save everyone else instead. Luckily he saved himself as well.

For a while there, I was sure I had seen the last of him, but he surprised me. He came back. The only reason I can think of why he might is because there is something here making him want to stay, and I can only hope itís me. Not trying to be self-serving or anything but the fact remains that he only tolerated her, and had little to say to the rest of them by the end of the war. We, on the other hand, have had a number of quite enlightening conversations, that is once he let his hair down a little bit and relaxed around me.

He still drives me insane though, because most of the time I have no clue as to what heís thinking or feeling. I can only guess that because he allows my company, and on the odd occasion even seeks it out, it means something good.

Or maybe I am just fooling myself, and he isnít thinking anything at all? Nah, thatís impossible. Thereís got to be way too much happening in that mind of his if you ask me.

/And love me for my mind, coz Iím a dangerous heart/
/When Iíve got time to kill Iím coming back to you/

As long as Iíve known him, heís always been the kind of person who just does what he needs to do, gets what he needs to get and thinks about what he needs to think about and nothing more. Hasnít the time for all the useless stuff that a lot of people fill their time with. I canít see him wasting his with me here unless heís starting to feel comfortable being with me. Yeah, maybe.

He did actually smile at me the other day. It was barely noticeable, just like all of his ďemotional outburstsĒ, but I saw it. It melted me right there on the spot as our eyes connected. Then as soon as he realized that I saw his little smile, that I was looking at him with my eyes going all soft, with me probably doing a pretty good job of looking like an idiot, he blushed and looked away. Heh, for that matter, I think I was blushing too, because my cheeks were really hot. And that feeling, that sharp heaviness on my heart, it was there again.

God, I love it when he does that to me. I just wishÖ I just wishÖ

/Iíll stake out just to find/
/The knife in a dangerous heart/
/When Iíve got time to kill Iím coming back for you/

So, I donít really know whatís going to happen between us. I donít even really know if there is an ďusĒ, or if this is simply me misinterpreting the body language of someone who is, for the most part, un-interpretable. I know what I want to happen though.

Iíd like to think that heís stayed because he wants to be with me, the same as I want to be with him, but I have no way of knowing for sure. My insides though, they tell me otherwise. They tell me that heís here because heís in the same boat that Iím in, only troubled with acknowledging his needs as a human and an emotional being. I know he has emotions. Deep ones. I know because I have seen him struggle to hold them back, and that is all the proof that I need to know that somewhere deep inside that shell of his is a person just wanting to be free of its cinder block wall.

/And love me for my mind, coz Iím a dangerous heart/
/When Iíve got time to kill Iím coming back for you/

Thatís why I think he stayed, because now itís my turn to break down his wall.

/Iíll stake out just to find/
/The knife in a dangerous heart/
/When Iíve got time to kill Iím coming back to you/

He is truly a dangerous person, but not in the way that anyone would ever have imagined.


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