Disclaimers:  I don’t own anything.  Gundam Wing and all of its characters belong to someone else.

Author’s notes:  Part 5 of my series.  The story picks up about a week after the last part.  Duo’s been getting better.  Heero
caught a cold from Duo, since Duo doesn't have a viral form of pneumonia, it’s not communicable, so Heero can’t catch it from
him.



Desires and Deceptions
Part 5



Heero was looking down at Duo, who slept soundly in his arms.  However, the American’s face still felt hot against Heero’s
arm.  Heero disentangled himself from Duo, rising to his feet.  He looked down at the sleeping pilot, watching as he rolled over
in his sleep, grabbing one of the pillows and holding it close to his body.  Heero couldn’t help but smile at the sight.  Duo was
just too adorable when he slept, even when he was sick.

Heero leaned over, pulling the blankets up around the sleeping pilot, wanting him to be as comfortable as possible.  It had been a
week since Duo had gotten pneumonia, and although he was getting better, Heero couldn’t help but continue to worry about
him.  He leaned forward, pressing a gentle kiss to Duo’s temple before moving away from the bed.

He backed away to the bathroom, where he dampened a washcloth.  It seemed as if he did this at least ten times every day, but
that really didn’t matter to him.  Only Duo’s health did.  If he had to do it a thousand times, he would.  He just wanted Duo to
get better.

Heero walked back over to the bed, carrying the damp cloth in his hand.  As he sat on the edge of the bed, he turned his head
away from Duo and sneezed, three times in rapid succession.  He reached over to the bedside table and grabbed a tissue, holding
it to his nose.  Almost immediately after blowing his nose, a coughing fit struck him, not as bad as Duo’s coughs but still quite
annoying.  He didn’t like being sick, but at least he knew what to expect from an illness unlike Duo, so Heero wasn’t as afraid of
sickness as Duo was.

Heero was just getting over his cold, a cold he had caught from Duo.  He had been sick almost all week, while Duo was
recovering from his own illness.  Being groggy hadn’t helped Heero while he was taking care of Duo.  In fact, being sick, just
made it so much harder for Heero to be of help.  He found it hard to concentrate, and he either coughed or sneezed at the most
inappropriate times, often causing him to drop something.  They had gone through several bowls and glasses already.

“Sorry.”  Duo said in a weak, raspy voice.  All that coughing had certainly been rough on Duo’s throat.

Heero smiled down at him, surprised to see him awake.  The pneumonia had taken a lot out of him.  Duo barely had any energy.  
He couldn’t even sit up without help from Heero.  However, Heero knew that fatigue was a natural symptom of Duo’s illness.

“What do you have to be sorry about?”  Heero asked, as Duo rolled over onto his back, removing his arms from around the
pillow he held.

Duo looked up at him, his eyes half-closed.  “I’m sorry I made you sick.”  He said, tiredly.

“It’s just a cold, Duo.  Nothing serious.”  Heero replied, laying the cool, damp cloth across Duo’s forehead.

“That’s what I started out with.”  Duo said, yawning.

Heero smiled, taking hold of Duo’s hand.  “Yes, but I won’t be foolish enough to go out in icy rain like you did.”

Duo let out a laugh, which quickly turned into a coughing fit.  Heero grabbed a glass from the bedside table.  Once Duo stopped
coughing, Heero gently wrapped his arm around Duo’s shoulders, lifting him slightly from the bed.  The cloth slipped off Duo’s
head.

“Here.”  Heero said kindly, holding the glass to Duo’s lips.

Duo took a few sips, then turned his head away.  Heero took that as a sign that Duo was finished.

“Thanks.”  Duo smiled, as Heero laid him back down.

Heero placed the glass back on the bedside table and retrieved the cool cloth from where it had fallen.  “Go back to sleep.”  
Heero said, brushing Duo’s bangs away from his face.

Duo didn’t reply.  He just closed his eyes, a smile on his face.  Heero placed the cloth on Duo’s forehead again, then laid down
beside the American.  He wrapped his arms around Duo, smiling as he felt Duo snuggle closer to his body.  He wondered if Duo
would be this affectionate when he was healthy.  He smiled at that thought, realizing that Duo would be.


*****


Heero awakened, hearing a faint knocking sound.  He carefully slipped out of bed, stealing a quick glance to see that Duo was
still sleeping.  He quickly moved to the door and opened it.  To his surprise, he saw Relena standing there, and right behind her
was Sally.

“Heero, I am so sorry that I couldn’t get here sooner.”  Relena said, stepping into the motel room with Sally.  “How is Duo?”

“Sleeping.”  Heero replied, as he quietly closed the door.

“Oh, sorry.”  Relena replied in a whisper.  “But is he getting better?”

“Yes.”  Heero said, stifling a cough before it could leave his mouth.  He pressed his hand to his mouth, to keep the coughs back,
not wanting to awaken Duo.

A hand clamped on his shoulder and he looked up to see Sally.  “Are you okay?”  She asked.  “You still have that cold, huh?”

Heero just glared, as he took his hand away from his face.  “Why are you here?”  He asked.

“Here.”  Sally replied, holding a small bottle of pills out to Heero.  “I brought a refill for Duo’s prescription.  It should last the
rest of the week.  I also came to ask if you needed any supplies.”

“We are running low on tissues, orange juice, and chicken soup.  Also, we could use a loaf of bread and some crackers.”  Heero
sighed, rubbing his temple, remembering that Duo had been nagging him to ask Sally for something. “And Duo wants a box of
Animal Crackers, or at least he’s been asking about them every time give him something to eat.  He’s been craving something
sweet.  And I could use some Tylenol.”

“That’s wonderful!”  Sally exclaimed, although she kept her voice low.  “He actually asked for something specific?”

Heero nodded.

“Good.  That means his appetite is coming back.  Everything you wanted  . . . It’ll all be delivered by the end of the day.”  Sally
replied, smiling, still holding that pill bottle in her hand.

Heero took the bottle from her.  He walked over to Duo’s side, glancing down at the sleeping pilot, as he placed the pill bottle on
the bedside table.  When he turned to walk back over to Sally, Relena was standing in front of him.

“I’m glad to hear he’s getting better.”  She smiled.

“I’m sure he’ll appreciate your visit.  He has spoken highly of you for your help with the party.”  Heero said.

“It was no problem, really.”  She replied.

Heero studied her face.  “Why did you help him?”

“The poor dear was beside himself.  I never thought you cared for him in that way, and he certainly didn’t think you ever
would, so he came to me for help.  I figured that if he dressed as a girl, he’d have a better chance.”  She said.

Heero narrowed his eyes.  “That doesn’t answer my question.  Why did you help him?”

Relena sighed as she sat on the bed beside Duo.  She reached out and brushed the bangs away from his eyes, before turning
back to look at Heero.  “Because I saw that he was able to do what I never could.  You deserve some happiness, Heero.  I know
now that I can’t give that to you . . . but he can.  Your eyes . . . are gentler than they used to be.  I guess I have him to thank
for that.”

“He told me he had a mission that night.  He lied.”  Heero stated, staring down at the sleeping form of Duo.

“He didn’t lie.  He did have a mission . . . You were his mission.”  Relena replied.

Heero continued to watch Duo, as Relena’s words sank into his mind.  Duo twitched in his sleep, a small groan escaping his
lips.  Then a thought entered Heero’s mind and he turned to Sally.  “May I speak to you in private?”  He asked.

“Sure.”  Sally nodded.

Heero led her to the bathroom, leaving Duo and Relena in the other room.  Once the door was shut, Heero turned to Sally.  “I
need your advice.”

“On what?”  She replied.

“Duo’s been having nightmares.  I asked Duo what was wrong, and he told me.  But I don’t think he told me everything.”  
Heero said.

“So what exactly are you asking me?”  Sally asked, crossing her arms over her chest.

“Although I know my presence helps, Duo still has the nightmares.  I don’t want to put Duo on the defensive, but how can I get
him to talk to me?”  Heero asked, keeping his eyes fixed on hers.

Sally shrugged.  “Honestly, Heero, I don’t know what to tell you.  I’m sure he’s been through a lot, as have you and the other
pilots.  Duo will tell you when and if he’s ready.  You can’t rush it.  He has to trust you completely before he can open his heart
and soul.  It’s not that he doesn’t trust you now.  You know he’d trust you with his life.  The problem is his heart is much more
fragile . . . and I think it’s been broken a couple of times before.  He’s more fragile now because he feels that another break
would shatter him completely.”

Heero sighed, lowering his gaze to the floor. “So there’s nothing I can do.”

“Heero, you’re doing everything you can.  Just being here with him, taking care of him, is helping him more than I possibly
could.  He loves you . . .”  She laid her hand on his shoulder.  “And I can see that the sentiment is shared.  Just give him some
time to test the waters.”

Heero sighed, and nodded, not knowing what else to say.  Sally was right, Heero just had to wait a little longer.  He had to let
Duo take his time.  He couldn’t rush things.

He turned and opened the door, letting Sally walk out of the bathroom first.  As he stepped out, he looked over to Duo’s bed.  
Relena was still sitting there beside the American.  She had the damp washcloth in her hands, and was wiping it along Duo’s
face, gently touching Duo’s cheeks and forehead.

Duo’s eyes were open slightly, and he was looking up at Relena with a small smile on his face.  Duo whispered in a weak and
tired voice.  “You know, I’ve always wanted to be in bed with Heero, but now I’m too sick to enjoy it.”

Relena chuckled, her face lighting up with a large smile.  “Well, then you should get better soon, so that you can start enjoying
it.”

Duo’s smile grew.  Heero calmly walked over, and sat beside Duo, taking hold of his hand.  “Hi.”  Duo grinned.  “We were just
talking about you.”

“I heard.”  Heero replied.

“Come on, Relena.  I think it’s time for us to go.  Duo needs his rest and we were only here to see if they needed any supplies
and to drop off that prescription.”

“Okay.”  She leaned over, placing a small kiss on Duo’s forehead.  “You get better soon.”  She smiled, then looked over to
Heero as he began coughing again.  “You too.”

Relena stood, following Sally to the door.  They left, closing the door behind them, while Heero remained by Duo’s side.  Now
Duo and Heero were alone again.  Heero was left with his thoughts, worrying about Duo’s health, wondering if Duo would ever
truly trust him.  However, he would wait as long as possible for Duo, not wanting to ruin anything by pushing him too fast.

“I’m kinda hungry.”  Duo whispered.

Heero smiled down at Duo.  “I’ll go heat up some of the soup you didn’t finish before.”  Heero replied, as he stood and walked
over to the fridge.  He pulled out a half-full pot of soup and placed it on the stove.

When it was thoroughly heated, he dished it into a bowl and brought it over to Duo, along with a spoon.  He placed the bowl on
the table, then helped Duo to sit up, propping the pillows up behind him.  Just like usual, he let Duo hold the bowl, while he got
ready to feed him.

Duo’s eyes were downcast, staring at the bowl he held so carefully in his shaking hands.  “What were you and Sally talking
about?”  He asked, quietly.  “Was it about my nightmares?”

“Yes, but don’t worry.  I won’t ask about them.”  Heero replied.

“Heero . . .”  Duo began.

Heero wouldn’t let him finish.  He placed his fingers over Duo’s lips, stopping any other words with a gentle gesture.  “Tell me
when you’re ready . . . not when you think I want to hear it.”

He pulled his fingers away, and smirked at the smile he saw on Duo’s face.  “Thanks.”  The American replied.

Heero lifted the spoon, gently blowing across the soup before he held it to Duo's lips.  Duo ate slowly, taking his time with each
spoonful.  When he was finished, Heero placed the bowl on the bedside table again, surprised to see that Duo had eaten the
entire bowl.  Maybe he was getting better.  He was still so exhausted, but now he was eating more.  At least that was something.


*****


It had been three days since Sally and Relena had visited.  Duo had looked so much better then, had seemed to be getting
healthier, but now it was just so much worse.  Heero was worried.

It had started the day after Sally and Relena’s visit.  Duo had said he didn’t feel right, that something was off.  But Heero had
assured him that it was just because he was sick.  Duo groggily agreed, and hadn’t brought up the subject again.  Maybe Heero
should have listened to Duo, should have called Sally.

Now, Heero sat at the edge of Duo’s bed, watching as the other pilot writhed in pain.  He was clutching his stomach, curling
himself into a ball, then quickly changing position to stretch his legs out.  It was as if no matter what he did, he couldn’t stop the
pain.  His skin was hot to the touch, so much warmer than it had ever been, and his skin was deathly pale.

“Heero?”  Duo moaned, clutching his stomach even tighter.  The stomach cramps caused him nothing but agony, and Heero
didn’t know what was causing them.  It was so strange.  Duo had been getting better.  What had happened?

Heero pulled the shivering form closer to his body, wanting to offer some amount of comfort.  Duo’s hot flesh pressed against
his arm, causing worry to shoot through Heero’s heart.  “It’s okay, Duo.”  Heero said, running his hands over Duo’s feverish
forehead and through his hair.

“It hurts.”  He groaned.  “Please, make it stop.”

Heero wished he could do something.  Listening to Duo’s pleas, the way he begged for the pain to stop, it was agonizing.  Duo
shouldn’t be in so much pain.  “I’m going to call Sally.”  Heero said, unwrapping his arms from around Duo’s shivering body.

“No!”  Duo lashed out, grabbing Heero’s wrist in a weak grip.  “No doctors.”  He pleaded.

That was the only reason Heero hadn't called Sally earlier.  Duo hadn’t wanted him to.  And Heero just couldn’t bring himself to
go against Duo’s wishes then.  But now, as he looked once more at Duo’s pain-stricken face, he made up his mind.  He had to
do it, for Duo’s sake.

“I can’t let you suffer, Duo.  I love you too much to see you like this.  Please, let me call Sally?”  Heero asked.

Duo didn’t reply.  He silently let go of Heero’s wrist.  He curled himself into a ball once again.  Heero could hear the whimpers
as Duo fought against the pain.  Only three days ago, Duo had seemed so much better.  Heero couldn’t figure out what had
changed since then.

Heero turned to the phone and switched it on.  But there was nothing.  Heero tried again, and again the screen was blank.  There
was no dial tone, nothing, just a blank screen.  Heero cursed under his breath, staring at the broken phone.  “Stupid motel
phone.”  He grumbled.  “Nothing ever works right in dumps like this.”

He quickly returned to Duo’s side, not knowing what he could do now.  With no phone, there was no way to contact Sally, no
way to call for help.  How could he help Duo, when he didn’t know what to do?

“Heero . . . it’s happening again.”  Duo cried.

Heero lifted Duo into his arms, carrying him quickly to the bathroom.  He set him down in front of the toilet, just as he had done
several times before.  Moments later, Duo vomited.  Almost every ten minutes now, whether he had eaten anything or not.  
Heero had to make sure that Duo drank some water, so that he at least had something to vomit.  Otherwise, it would be agony
on his already sore throat.

When Duo had finished, his body began to shake terribly.  Heero pulled him closer to his chest, cradling the American against his
body.  Duo wrapped his arms around Heero, holding him as tightly as his weakened body would allow him to.  Slowly, Heero
began rocking back and forth, wishing he knew what to do.  He was scared, for the first time in his life, not knowing what to
do.  With every passing moment, Duo continued to suffer, and all Heero could do was sit by and watch.

Heero felt the arms slip away, felt Duo’s body stop shivering.  He pulled Duo away from him.  His eyes widened in terror as he
saw that Duo’s eyes were closed shut, that he heard no breathing coming from the American.

His mind raced in panic as he laid Duo across the floor.  He pressed his fingers to Duo’s throat.  Finding no pulse, he laid his
hands over Duo’s chest.  “No, no!  Don’t do this to me Duo!”  He yelled as he began chest compressions.

After fifteen compressions, he turned to Duo’s face.  He pinched the American’s nose, and lowered his mouth to Duo’s, forcing
air into the pilot’s mouth.  When that didn’t produce any results, he returned to the chest compressions.  “Please, don’t leave
me, Duo!”  He shouted, tears falling from his eyes at the thought of losing Duo forever.

Duo’s body arched off the floor, as he violently coughed.  Heero nearly leapt into the air in happiness, but he knew that it wasn’t
over.  Something was terribly wrong with Duo, something other than the pneumonia.  He had to get help.

Without uttering a word, he picked Duo up and carried him from the bathroom.  He laid Duo on the bed, wrapping blankets
around his unconscious body.  Heero grabbed a bag, and with one arm swept all of Duo’s medication from the bedside table into
the bag.  He threw the bag over his shoulder and picked up Duo, still bundled in all of those blankets from the bed.  Then he
walked out of the motel room, deciding that it would be better to risk taking Duo out into the cold, rather than just sit by and
watch him die.



To Be Continued . . .