"You're a fool, Yuy."
He could be telling me that it is raining outside, or that there is a large chunk of space debris falling through the atmosphere about to cause the next ice age. It would all be done in the same quiet tone of voice. The context makes it clear. Fully conscious of what he will say, I ask with an equally quiet tone. "What is it this time, Barton?"
He shakes his head, crossing his arms in preparation for the confrontation. The fingers of one hand begin tapping irritably against the opposite arm. "Three years, Yuy. Three years, four boyfriends, and one girlfriend, I've watched you watch him."
"And all you've ever done is watch."
I have never considered Trowa to be a poster child for action. "And now you're through with watching me watch him?"
He seems pleased that I don't bother denying anything. "Not my place to intrude." He adds a slight nod for the concession.
"But your place to comment?"
"I'm your friend, Heero. Friends don't let friends be idiots."
"I'm his friend, too."
"You're more than a friend."
"A good friend, then."
The superlative. The topmost. The optimum. "Three years, four boyfriends, and one girlfriend. One me. The one and only."
"That can't be enough."
I recite the litany again. "Three years. Four boyfriends. One girlfriend. It's been fine."
"I don't jump with joy. Ever."
"You don't jump his bones, either."
Blink. Stare. Blink some more. Open my mouth. Close my mouth. Give up on finding an appropriate response to that. Would now be a good time to tell him to get the hell out of my apartment?
He fails to take full advantage of my lapse. "He's unattached right now."
I can come up with an answer to that. "For all of two weeks."
He has an answer, too. "For always."
"Four boyfriends, one--"
"For always. You've had every one of them pegged from the start. You know it. I know it. I bet even he knows it. None of them ever had a chance."
I pause. "That would be pretentious of me to say. You never know."
He snorts. "What, opposites may attract? I'll give you that much. They certainly have in this case."
Attraction. Irresistable pull. Magnetic force. Gravitational law. Revolution around him? An orbit with eccentricity, certainly. Attraction? Not quite. Balance. No decaying orbits for me. "If it ain't broke..."
"Doesn't mean you can't upgrade. Obsolescence, Yuy. It happens."
I don't like that word. It sends a cold tingle down my spine. "I didn't think friendship ever went out of fashion."
"Maybe not, but this martyr thing of yours has gotten pretty damn old." His voice held a new edge.
I responded in kind. "What do you mean?"
"Three years, Yuy." I'm almost disappointed he doesn't finish the chant. Then again, it is something to be uttered calmly, not in this aggressive tone. "Three years you've loved him, and you haven't gotten your ass into gear."
"Three years, Barton." I resist the urge to append the count. "Three years, and I don't see what I have to get my ass into gear over."
"It's not like he's not interested."
"He was on his way to Jase's before he changed his mind and decided to come here instead."
He is conveniently ignoring the finer details. I remind him. "He was on his way over there to try and reclaim some of his CDs before he decided he didn't want to go through the trouble, especially after it started raining, so he came here instead." Note to self: try and replace his CDs.
"Walking through the rain?"
He had to walk somewhere. Why not come to a friend? "He likes the rain."
"You know how he loves his music."
"You know how he hates being dramatic. About this sort of thing, anyway." Drama for real. He enjoys drama for fun.
"That's why you should just tell him. He won't make a big production out of it. You can't lose, Heero."
I can't not raise my voice in protest at his subtle little sneer. "This isn't about the risk, Trowa. This is about the need."
His volume rises to match. "You need him."
"I can't need what I already have."
"You only have a small part of him."
"I'm not greedy."
"And there's the martyr thing kicking in again. You can't trust that you'll always have him. What happens if it does work out for him one day?"
"Then I'll be happy for him."
He wishes he could accuse me of lying. I'm not. "Just loving him is really enough?" Challenge, not resignation.
I feel the need to defend my stance since he's gone through the uncharacteristic trouble to push the issue. "Yes. He loves me. He's there when I need him. He--" does so many things that I can't even begin to articulate it. And all with things as they are. "I fail to see what more I get from telling him."
Trowa's expression sets into something intent. "How about not getting that pained look whenever he goes out with someone else?"
Pain? That is as good a word as any. Consistent with that tightening in my chest, right? Not for the normal reasons, though. "That's because they aren't right for him."
He asks the heavens for patience with a roll of his eyes. "You hate people who rationalize, Yuy."
"I'm not rationalizing."
"So who is right for him? Someone about his height, athletic, stubborn, competitive, usually pretty intelligent but not always?"
I shrug. Sounds like someone he might get along with. Potentials are everywhere.
Trowa continues. He barely even stopped. "Known him for years, completely devoted to him, has a special smile just for him, used to pilot a Gundam?"
We were doing great, up until that last qualification. I can't stop myself from glaring at him as he knows I will. "Yes. Maybe! I don't know." That's not fair.
He begs for some more patience. "Martyr yourself if you must, Yuy, but don't bring him down with you." That's low, but he obviously doesn't care. "He needs you, too. Spare him the trouble."
"If he needs me, he'll find me." Destiny? Fate? Inevitability? I cringe. How... storybook. Life rarely works out that way. Besides, he has me, doesn't he?
"Neither of you has ever favored the easy route. Spare him the trouble," he repeats. "Hell, maybe I should spare you both the trouble."
"Leave him be," I snap back sharply. "Things are fine--"
"Every time he's broken up with someone, he comes to you for comfort."
Such as it was. I snort. "It's not as if he's ever been very depressed about any of them." Which is good. I'd be terrible at comfort.
"About them? No. About himself? Just a little. Admit it."
Preposterous. His self-confidence is outstanding... except maybe sometimes when it comes to... no. "And you think my saying something will just magically make things better for him?"
"You're the fool now, Barton."
We stare at each other for a couple of seconds before I hear a tentative knocking across the room behind me. My eyes widen. "Shit," I whisper.
The bathroom door opens. "Umm, you guys do know that I'm, like, *right here*, right? And, uh, this door doesn't really block much sound, yanno."
I glare fiercely at Trowa. He smirks. Obviously he never forgot where I'd sent my unexpected guest after his little traipse through the rain. "I hate you, Barton."
He outright grins at me. "Have fun, you two." He picks up his jacket and calmly lets himself out, leaving me standing in strained silence with the object of my affections.
|on to three years and an hour or so|
This piece of fiction is the intellectual property of the little turnip that could. The basis for this fic, i.e. Gundam Wing, Kyuuketsuki Miyu, et al., is the property of someone else. The author can be con tacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. This has been an entirely automated message. http://www.cs.hmc.edu/~jchew/misc/gw.html
last modified : 11/1/2004 17:57:56 PST