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Duo thinks about life, his roommates, and himself. Slash
It’s funny now that I think about it. The God of Death is the only one of the five of us that doesn’t fight anymore. Oh, Quat isn’t a soldier but he fights verbal battles that leave my head spinning. Fei, Hee-chan, and Tro are all Preventers. When my boys come home with blood spattered uniforms in plastic bags, I don’t ask who’s blood it is. The fact that they’re home is plenty for me. They probably couldn’t tell me anyway. Confidentiality contract and all that.
I gave up fighting when I gave up the priest garb. It’s still here, framed and behind glass. Hee-chan did that, but I’m damned if I try to figure out why. You can see the blood stains clearly, even if it is black. The rips remind me of old injuries and my body aches with sympathy. I’m twenty years old but I hurt more than someone three times my age and…not all of it is physical.
I spend my days employed as a translator. There’s plenty of money put back from what I stole from Oz, but it’s good to have something to do with my time. I suspect it’s the same for the others. So far, I’ve got English, Japanese, Spanish, and German under my belt. Fei’s helping me with Chinese but it’s taking a while. I don’t have much time to focus on it between various diplomatic missions Une sends me on. Technically, I don’t work for her - I’m just an outside consultant - but she gives me more work that anyone else. I could say no, but then I’d have free time and that isn’t good.
Beside my priest garb is one of Fei’s prints. We have a big catalogue of them on the computer. There aren’t any originals because Fei paints them right on the walls. When we found out, we started taking digitals of them before he painted over with that golden yellow color he likes. It’s easier to catch them, now that he lives here. See, Fei doesn’t just pick up a brush and paint because he can. He fucking needs to do it, or he’d never survive. He puts everything into it, and barely even eats or sleeps until he’s done. It usually takes him three days to complete one. We sneak in quartered sandwiches that he eats automatically while he’s painting. When he’s done, he sleeps a full day and then goes back to work.
We’re all lucky that Une knows us well. All I have to do when Fei gets into one fof his obsessive painting sprees is call her up and say “Fei got inspired” and she doesn’t expect him for the next four days. He has a shitload of paperwork after, but that’s a small price to pay for sanity.
Fei isn’t the only one like that. Sometimes, Hee-chan has bad missions where everything that could go wrong does and he still finishes it. One can always count on him completing a mission to it’s fullest. That doesn’t mean there aren’t any scars left behind. I always know it’s back when Hee-chan misses dinner. He’ll stay in his room and obsess over every mistake until he’s mapped out the perfect way to combat every one, and then swears to learn from it. Sometimes, it’s a bad enough mission that he pulls out his gun and just stares at it for hours. I watched him once and as scary as it was to see, I knew he would be out for breakfast the next day. Hee-chan won’t kill himself until he knows he’s totally and completely perfect. I’m not afraid because I know he would never see himself that way. He’s like Fei in that, which is probably part of why they’re partners. They understand each other in a way no one else can. It’s amazing to watch them, really watch, even if it’s just them making dinner. They work in perfect tandem and barely say a word to one another. Still, why speak when those looks say everything? Sometimes, I wish I was on the receiving end of one of those heated, passionate, lusty glances. I get turned on enough when I catch ‘em. Not that I really want them, but it would be nice. Hand it to me to catch a girl who barely notices me giving her any kind of look. I love her just the way she is though, so Fei and Hee-chan can keep each other.
Quat came back last week from one of his things, but Tro was off at the circus. That’s his catharsis, the Big Top. He’s not as predictable as the others in how long he’s gone, but that’s okay. He got back for Quat’s last day so they got to spend some time together. See, Tro uses the circus to heal from the world, then he plunges right back into the worst of it. He’s the best undercover agent Une has and she doesn’t spare him anything. Not that he’d ever complain.
Quat lounges around here when it gets too much for him. He reads or watches TV or just naps, letting himself act like a normal kid. Ant twenty, yeah, we’re still just kids who had to grow up way too fast. Sometimes, he and I go to the little comic shop on fifth street and fight about who would come out on top in a brawl. I still go for Batman, but he’s an avid fan of Superman. The owner used to get mad but after Quat donated a pretty big chunk of cash to the place for remolding, he lets us do what we want. Turns out he’s a pretty cool dude when he’s not chasing out window shoppers.
When it gets quiet here and no one else is home, that’s when I get bad. I turn on every light and put on music because it reminds me that there really are people out in the world and I’m not alone. And then I write, just like I am now and get out everything and anything, just to talk. The others figured out years ago why I talk so much.
It’s funny. I don’t fight but I think I’m going to be the first to day. One day, I’m going to get this way, but they won’t get home in time. I’ll use my own gun, the one I couldn’t leave behind, and that will be the end of it.
In two weeks, I’ll be twenty-one. Tro, Hee-chan, and me picked out birthdays once during the war. Turns out Tro liked Astrology so our birthdays are special and important. Quat promised to be home for it and Fei, Tro, and Hee-chan all made sure to have the day off. We do this no matter who’s birthday it is because we all know how important it is to stick together.
There will be a cake and balloons and we’ll watch movies and throw popcorn at each other and tell jokes and be silly because we can. We can all let our hair down with each other.
In three months, it’s Hee-chan’s birthday. There will be cake, of course, but we’ll head over to the paintball course after. Paintball is fun and fast paced and non lethal, like arcade games. We’ll play until we’re too tired to stand the bruises then head home for a movie before bed.
Tro is getting a puppy for his birthday in half a year. We all decided on this. There’s generally always one of us at home, and we have nice neighbors. We’ll make it a useful breed so Tro can train it to be an attack pup or a show dog, or whatever he chooses to do. Oh, and there will be cake.
Quat will get the cake, balloons, and a new weird picture for his office. We’ll put on music and dance around all crazy while the more stoic three smile and laugh at us. Still, we’ll drag them in and even Fei will dance, though he’ll deny it later. Quat loves to dance. He lets it all loose and it’s the most beautiful I’ve ever seen him.
Fei is last. There will be cake and balloons and glitter will mysteriously cover the entire floor. He’ll chase me around and threaten to kill me, and I’ll be sure to drop ice down his shirt before dinner. He always gets blades as presents and has an impressive collection on one wall of the living room.
The music isn’t helping anymore. It’s never quite enough, never as good as someone actually there. I’ve been staring at my gun for the last half hour and it keeps calling to me, keeps whispering about the wonderful darkness of nothingness. I don’t remember when I got it out from under the bed. It’s been years since I felt this alone. My fingers are cold and numb and I keep hitting the wrong keys. I can barely feel the metal against my palm, but I feel the warmth from it. It’s the only thing I feel right now. The music is gone now. No sound. Too quiet. Why is it always so quiet?
He came. Put his arms around me. Held me while I cried. I’m okay now. I’m okay now. One of them always comes to my rescue. I’m okay now.
I just wish I could stay okay.
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