Higher Ups

Chapter 2:Firecracker


by Kracken


Disclaimer: I don't own them and I don't make any money off of them.
Warnings: Male/Male sex, graphic, language, violence, abuse.

Higher Ups

"I'm home, guys!" Duo called as he went through the door of his apartment and tossed his coat aside onto a chair.

The big room, once part of a packing plant, had heavy duty bar locks and latches, a concrete floor, and metal rafters high over head, with a few tiny windows that opened outward and let in drafts. Duo kicked the on switch of a space heater as he passed it and came to stop at a fifty gallon aquarium with only two large fish in it. He tapped lightly on the glass with a little grin and then scattered some fish food on the top of the water.

"Eat, poop, and swim," Duo sighed. "Must be nice."

Duo watched the two fish eat for a moment, and then began stripping out of his clothes as he walked over to his phone, perched on the end of a metal table, once used for butchering meat, and checked his answering machine. The light was flashing. He punched the play button and plopped into a metal chair as he kicked off his shoes and began undoing his belt.

A small vid appeared of Quatre. "Party on the 21st, six o'clock. Be there."

Duo snickered at the tough voice. Quatre had said something about him working too hard, last time they had met. He supposed that this was Quatre's cure. His face clouded, though, at certain thoughts, certain memories, and he wondered if he was going to end up with a party phobia. That made him scowl angrily. He wasn't about to let Heero Yuy intimidate him again. Duo Maxwell wasn't a pussy. That made him wince, but he throttled back on a crude, mental comeback to that and went on to the next call.

"Hey, Duo, Kevin, here," a smooth, deep voice said. "I'm going to keep calling until you say stop. I thought we had some chemistry going on and I'd really like to get together. Please call me."

Tall, dark, and handsome, Duo recalled with a smile. He'd met the man at a bar nearby and had spent a good four hours talking to him, laughing, and drinking. he'd seemed... nice... sexy... and Duo had given him his number before they had parted. He should answer that call, he thought. He'd buried himself in Preventers, after the war, and avoided dealing with civilian life, with anything other than learning to pay bills, hold a lease, and do his taxes on time. Relationships, and facing his own sexuality, had turned out badly. Pain and humiliation had made him more than willing to avoid it. All the porn movies were liars, obviously, and Quatre had to be a masochist to talk so glowingly of his relationship with Trowa. That stuff hurt. That stuff made a person feel... used. A person had to be the humper, it seemed, and not the humpee, but Duo wasn't sure that he could get off on hurting someone the way that he had been hurt. There were other ways of having sex, he knew, but that's not what everyone talked about. It seemed certain that hand jobs wouldn't satisfy anyone for long.

It was a struggle, body wanting one thing and mind shying away from that thing. It made Duo feel that he should talk to someone about it, but the thought of that embarrassed him.He'd have to admit to his fear, to his pain, and how he couldn't take what every gay man seemed to enjoy. He was a wimp, obviously, or doing something very wrong, It all seemed so straightforward in the porn videos. A little wine, a little blow job, and suddenly they were humping and looking totally turned on.

Duo stood, arms wrapped around himself as he remembered Heero's big hand forcing him down, making him choke, making him take it all before that shove onto the bed and that... He'd wanted it, Duo reminded himself. He was a trained Gundam pilot. He could have made Heero pay with blood and chunks of flesh for what he took, but he hadn't. He'd sucked and spread his legs, and... the rest was such a painful blur...

Duo scrubbed at his face, turned, and deleted Kevin's message. No way, no how, was he doing that again. He'd try girls before he'd let some guy use him again like that... make him hurt... make him cry.

Duo popped the tab on a hot, ready made meal, opened a beer, and sat before his vid screen, listening to the news first, a variety show second, and then playing a few video games.It was the same every night. Mind numbing, boring, lonely and the reason that he never turned down a long assignment at work. It was much better to face bad guys, than to face how pathetic his personal life had become.It didn't make him feel any better that everyone else had seemed to get a life, and to be happy, except for him. Even Heero, a star everywhere he went, and comfortable with that. He loved the attention, loved the perks that came with it, and was on everyone's itinerary. Everyone offered themselves to him on a silver platter. Getting him drunk had seemed the only way to hand Heero his ass on one, Duo thought, and have the man take it.

Duo crunched his beer can, angry at himself for thinking about it yet again, and tossed it in the general direction of a large trash can. It bounced off the rim and clattered on the cement floor. "Get over it, Maxwell!" he growled at himself. The man had fascinated him during the war, making him harbor a childish crush, a need to see if it could go further. He supposed that having that dream so thoroughly smashed had been as shattering as the physical act. There hadn't been anything else to take it's place. Duo didn't plan for a better life, and couldn't see himself doing anything except what he was doing now, but he had hoped to share it... share it with Heero.

It had been childish, he knew. Heero's sex charged looks, hadn't told Duo anything, except that he was considered a desirable piece of tail, and Duo had to accept that, he knew, and move on. The man was never going to return his feelings. Feelings? On close examination, Duo doubted that his feelings were any purer than Heero's. Duo's disappointment was wrapped up in sex and not in Heero himself. The sex had turned out badly. The sex hadn't been what he had expected. The sex... there was nothing inside of him that even pretended to be a rejected lover. His heart wasn't broken, only his pride.

"Maybe I should just beat the crap out of him?" Duo muttered as he flipped off the vid and crawled into his narrow cot, tucked up in a corner. He wrapped arms around a body pillow and imagined how that would turn out. Heero was damned strong and damned deadly. He might get some good blows in, right before Heero turned him into paste."Might still be worth it," Duo whispered sleepily. Worth it if it made him stop thinking about that night.


"You almost caught your braid in that last hurdle," Milliardo said, suddenly at Duo's elbow.

Duo eyed him, panting and wiping a towel over his sweat covered brow. "Let me guess," he retorted, "You're going to add yourself to the list of people who want me to cut it off.?"

Milliardo frowned. His own hair long hair was caught back at the nape of his neck. "I don't indulge in hypocrisy."

Duo blushed, turned away to hide it, and then turned back around when he decided that made him too vulnerable. He blushed again when he realized how ridiculous that little dance had probably appeared. "It may not look like it," he said, "but I do keep an eye on it."

Milliardo towered over him, wide chest and shoulders squeezed into a tight Preventer tshirt, and long legs, as muscled as the rest of him, jutting out from shorts that were almost indecent on his long frame. Duo couldn't help the flick of eyes, a dirty part of his mind noticing a healthy bulge, before he dragged those eyes back up to his commander's face. Ice blue eyes seemed to glitter in the bright sunlight. They weren't contemptuous, disgusted, angry, or even amused. They were thoughtful, instead.

"Your time on the obstacle course was commendable," Milliardo told him. "I've only seen Yuy and Chang beat your time."

"They're taller," Duo replied with a shrug. "They can get over the walls faster."

"But your time under the barbed wire, and through the cement tunnels, far surpasses theirs," Milliardo pointed out. "You should be able to make up that time in those areas."

"My shooting is better, too," Duo snorted, "but it isn't all about time."

"No?" Milliardo raised a white eyebrow.

Duo waved the hand, holding the towel, at the course. "Speed is important, but skill is too. You want to arrive alive."

Milliardo smiled as he stared out over the course. "That is perceptive."

"It's experience talking," Duo corrected. "You know it,too, though, so why act like you don't?"

"I don't know you," Milliardo replied. "I only know you're reputation. I'm still considering you for my special ops team."

Even after the weird act he had pulled in the parking garage? Duo scowled, to hide his surprise. "I have a lot on my plate, now, I'm not sure..."

"This wouldn't include regular missions," Milliardo explained. He turned to watch several men run the course, the white tail of his long hair swaying against a muscled back. "You would only be given specialized ones."

"Suicide missions, you mean?" Duo grunted and stepped out of the man's shadow as he bent to snag his small workout duffle from the dirt.

"Regular agents might find them risky," Milliardo told him, "but not people of your caliber."

"So, Chang and Yuy are joining as well?" Duo couldn't keep the edge out of his voice. He knew that working with Heero was inevitable, but he didn't want to make that a constant.

"Of course," Milliardo replied and slid his eyes at Duo, as if measuring him. "You would be heading teams, or working solo. It would be a waste of resources to pair you together."

Duo felt relief, and was intrigued, despite himself. "Sign me up, then."

Milliardo blinked, perhaps expecting more of an argument, but then he said, "I want you to know, that this is strictly professional. You expressed concerns earlier, and I want to assure you that I never fraternize with those under my command."

"Is that right?" Duo grunted, trying to hide his acute embarrassment.

"You've clearly vocalized your distaste for the prospect," Milliardo added tightly."I don't want our working relationship crippled by your doubts about my intentions."

"I wouldn't call it that," Duo blurted and then covered his blush by ducking his head and running a hand through his hair. "I just... had some bad experiences..." It was a confession that he hadn't wanted to voice, but he was at a loss for any other.

Milliardo frowned. "You are a handsome man. I suppose propositions are unavoidable, but they still don't have any place in our organization."

Duo felt heat sizzle through him. Milliardo thought that he was handsome? He shrugged. "Okay, you have honor, just like Fei, and I know I can trust that, so I won't worry about it any more."

"Good," Milliardo gave a nod. "I'll email you the meeting schedule."

Duo watched him walk away, releasing his pale hair from its pony tail and letting it stream out in a breeze. No man should look that damned good... and the man thought that he, Duo Maxwell, was handsome. His new resolve, to not let his desires get him into trouble again, was crumbling. Not that he could do anything about it, especially since Milliardo had made it clear where he stood on the issue, but Duo couldn't help... desiring... wanting... despite everything he knew already about the consequences of that kind of relationship.

"I'm not gay," he tried. "I want to drink beer, watch sports, and do chicks." His eyes continued to watch Milliardo, though, and the way his shorts clung to a rounded ass. The stirring below his navel wouldn't let him lie to himself. He draped his towel there, to hide it, and hurried to the locker room to drown it in a cold shower.


back to Chapter One

On to Chapter Three


This page last updated: