Today, I wish to jump into a pit and mosh. Mosh like I've never moshed before. However, since that activity is not currently available to me, I will simply write this chapter... and listen to heavy metal music as I imagine moshing.

I live a rich fantasy life.

And I really hate this chapter. I promise, things will eventually pick up -there's an actual plot buried around here somewhere...

The Professional and the Amateur Part 12

In the early pre-dawn of what originally promised to be somewhat of a good day, Chang Wufei decided that it was high time he take a few laps in the pool. In retrospect, this sudden desire to continue his normal morning ritual proved slightly disastrous.

Funny. But disastrous.

Looking back, he probably should have expected it.

So, dressed in his black swimmer wear (which could only be considered glorified underwear in the... tightest... sense) and his hair pulled tightly in a small tail at the nape of his neck, he pounced upon the end of the diving board, sailed through the air with the grace of a gazelle, angled just so as he plummeted toward the serene surface of the clear water, noting -very belatedly, he realized later- that there seemed to be something floating in the water just as he silently broke the surface of the water...

All was silent.

And then he rose up out of the water with a great struggle, gasping for air and finding that he could not, in fact, even begin to articulate his angry bellow for the sudden icy coldness that seemed to grip and grind his very bones. Teeth chattering, body trembling violently as he jerkily made his way toward the edge of the frozen water to climb out of the pool, he only had one word in mind.


And since Yuy's room was the closest, he would be the first to bow under the rage that was Chang Wufei: Pissed Off. Donning a robe and armed with his weapon of choice, he silently stalked up the winding stairs that led to the second floor of the mansion, careful not to alert anyone sleeping of his presence. He soundlessly entered Yuy's domain; in the dim light that filtered through the window, he saw the target of his ire.

Brilliant. Yuy was very clearly naked.

Not brilliant. Duo Maxwell was in the same state, curled around Yuy's body as if the Japanese man were an oversized teddy bear.

The unexpected sight of Yuy and Duo, together (finally), gave Wufei some pause. Pale skin against golden tan, wiry arms and legs entangled like vines; Duo's head was resting on Yuy's arm, which was curled around the long-haired man's shoulders protectively. One of Duo's arms was resting on Yuy's bare, muscular chest. Make no mistake -Wufei was as straight as a ruler. However, even he had to appreciate the exquisite picture the two made after a night of very... obvious pleasurable activity.

It was enduring. "Aww," he murmured softly. "How cute." And then he smirked and promptly dumped a bucketful of icy pool water over the both of them. He barely resisted the urge to cackle when both men snapped awake instantly.

Duo squawked and, limbs flailing, one of his knees managed to catch Yuy right in the soft spot before he gracelessly tumbled from bed, taking the sheets with him and exposing Yuy's bare essentials. Yuy was caught between the shock to the system that only iced water could wrought and the rather obvious pain in his groin from where Duo had kneed him.

"Wha -what the hell?" Duo chattered. Wufei almost felt sorry for him; he doubted Duo had anything to do with the others' little prank. The sight of Yuy, slumped over his sensitive man-flesh and groaning more than made up Wufei's slight hitch of a conscience.


"Chang," Yuy growled. "Omae o korosu!"

"Rise and shine, Lovebirds," Wufei said cheerfully, as if receiving death threats before six was normal. In any case, it wasn't something he hadn't experienced before. He slung the bucket over his shoulder casually and raised an eyebrow at Yuy. "So, which one of you numbnuts came up with this brilliant plan? No, don't tell me. This stinks of Catalonia. Am I right?"

Yuy sent him a Death Glare that, at one time, sent shivers of bed-wetting fear up the paparazzi's spines. Not many people realized that this look had many variations, with hundreds of different meanings. This one said, "I'm going to boil you in jam, cover you in honey, and bury you in a fire ant hill on a really hot day, just see if I don't."(1)

"Thought so," Wufei said cheerfully. "Well. Have a pleasant morning." He grinned at Duo, who seemed caught between bemusement and embarrassment. "Nice going, Maxwell. And I thought things between you and Yuy were going slow."

Duo said one word. "Dorothy."

"Hm. She seems to have her fingers in everyone's pie lately," Wufei mused. He calmly slipped the bucket over Yuy's head, rapped his knuckles against the side gently, and swiftly moved out into the hall, remembering the two buckets of water he'd left outside for his next three victims.


For a long moment, not a word was spoken after Wufei's abrupt departure. Heero yanked the bucket off his head and threw it with a muffled curse, strangely dissatisfied when it didn't actually hit anything but the ground.

Duo peered up at Heero through his lashes and smiled bashfully. "And I thought things were going to be awkward between us after last night."

Despite being cold, wet, and in slight pain in his nether regions, Heero found himself smiling at his lover. "Well... After something like that... there isn't really room left to feel awkward." Embarrassed, yeah. Sort of vengeful -definitely. Awkward? No.

Duo grinned impishly. "Someone needs to tell Wufei that black speedos... not very flattering. Too... erm, slimming."

Heero threw his head back and laughed. Loudly. His laughter almost drowned out the angry sounds of Trowa and Quatre experiencing the same rude awakening.


Everyone but Solo, Helen, and Hilde seemed to be shooting one Chang Wufei some nasty glares. The Chinese man remained rather smug about the whole event, and even helped himself to a second serving of pancakes that he cheerfully ate with rather proud shit-eating grin on his face.

"Adults are weird," Solo announced solemnly before attacking his fruity cereal with a vengeance.

"Maybe," Duo said; probably the only one who had a rude awakening who wasn't glaring daggers at Wufei, "but we like to pretend to be normal anyway."

"It's all very relative, really," Quatre said casually, smiling smugly as he 'accidentally' knocked the salt shaker onto Wufei's plate. "'Normal' is all according to the current perception of the individual and society as a whole."

"I don't know what that means," Solo pointed out. "I'm six." And he held up exactly that many fingers to further emphasize the point.

Quatre smiled. "You will eventually."

"So what's on the agenda for today?" Hilde asked as she expertly went behind Solo's back to wipe away a trail of milk that had escaped from the corner of his mouth. The little boy made a sour face at his mouth and wiggled away urgently, away from the rough napkin.

"Duel with Zechs Marquise," Wufei said cheerfully. "It's going to be a fruitless effort that will spur Chen to question his entire philosophy on life."

"Keric and Trent find a mutual love of music," Quatre said with a fond look at his lover. "The potential for a relationship thickens."

"Hiroshi's going to steal Daniel's Gundam parts on the sly to fly off on a mission," Duo said dryly. "Daniel's going to be properly pissed."

"Meanwhile Hiroshi's going to blow up a military installment amidst much psychotic laughter," Heero said with a fond grin aimed toward Duo. "I get to work in the green room today."

"Rub it in, why don't you," Duo mumbled with a playful swat in Heero's direction.

"Dora is going to enroll in Rina's new school for pacifists in hopes of challenging the princess to a duel of morals and wit," Dorothy said casually. "The school uniform the costume director picked out is completely atrocious. And whoever found Relena's character that pink limo needs to be shot. Many times. With a handcannon."

"I'm gonna stay home from school today," Solo said happily, "and play violent, frightening video games that will warp my puerile mind."

Hilde blinked. "Nice try," she said with a smirk, poking the giggling six year old in the side. "Where did you hear those words?"

"Mr. Fei said it yesterday," Solo giggled. "What's sex mean?"

Duo dropped his fork, eggs flying across the table. "What?"

"Sex," Solo repeated. "Mr. Fei and Ms. Doro were giggling about you and Mr. Heero having sex last night."

Helen covered her smile with a well-placed napkin. Hilde crossed her arms and raised her eyebrow expectantly at her cousin. The two aforementioned gossipers were very carefully avoiding any and all contact with the braided man.

"... Does it matter if you get presents for Christmas?" Duo said lamely, his cheeks flushed red. And damn Heero for not meeting his eyes for fear of laughing hysterically at his plight.

"So sex is something you give someone else for Christmas?"

"Erm... sometimes... other holidays can be involved..."

"Am I ever going to get sex?"

Duo whimpered, eyes bulging. Not in a million years. Ever. I'm going to wipe this entire conversation from my memory. Will wash and wash, but never feel clean again, was only one of a thousand hysterical remarks zipping around in Duo's brain.

"Was it Mr. Heero's birthday?" Solo asked, turning his full attention to Heero. "You never said it was your birthday. Happy birthday!"

The Japanese man couldn't take it anymore. The expression on Duo's face compared to the complete naivety of Solo and the very obvious amusement of everyone else broke his resolve, and he immediately threw his head back and laughed wildly.

"Heero!" Duo whined, aghast. "It's not funny!"

"Is he kidding?" Dorothy murmured to Wufei privately. "It's freaking hilarious."

Wufei smirked. Mornings couldn't really get any better than this.


With the Lovebirds, Wufei, and Dorothy piled in the back of the cherry red Hummer and Duo securely buckled in the front seat beside him, Heero sped along the interstate, part of his attention on the road, even less attention on the speeding motorheads on their way to work, and a large part of his attention frowning at his cell phone.

"Heero, pay attention to the road," Duo squeaked after the third blaring horn that faded behind them. "That's the third guy you almost hit in the last... three minutes?" Duo stared at the digital clock, aghast. "Oh, we're never going to make it there alive..."

"Suck it up, braid-boy," Dorothy said from the backseat, not unkindly. "Imagine having to go through driver's education with him. Oh, yeah. I went there."

Heero decided it would be more beneficial to his health if he just ignored their complaints about his driving. "Why do I have sixteen voice mails from Lyle?"

Dorothy immediately adopted a look of innocence, which never looked quite so innocent on her devious face. "Oh, that's right. I forgot to mention that Lyle called. Something about publicity stuff."

Heero made a sour face. "Did he happen to mention what kind of publicity stuff?" Public appearances, he could deal with. Interviews with reporters always brought out the worse in him.

"I don't think he did."

"Who's Lyle again?"

"Lyle Marson is Yuy's annoying manager," Wufei muttered, disgruntled. "He's a weasel. Eyes the color of money and mind focused on much of the same. Damn good at his job, though, which I suppose is why Heero hasn't fired him yet."

"Did you ever convince Lyle that you aren't interested in a 1200 page biography on your life?" Quatre asked.

"1200 pages?" Duo muttered, agog. "What's to tell? You were born, you act, and you prefer boxers over briefs. Aren't those the facts anyone really cares about?"

Everyone in the backseat smirked, exchanging knowing looks amongst themselves. "You would know Yuy's underwear preference," Wufei said, teasingly accusatory.

"What's that?" Duo said lightly. "Is that Speedo Man talking? Those things made you look like you were hung like a tictac. Just thought I'd point that out."

Quatre snorted loudly, hiding his face in Trowa's shirt, shoulders shaking in silent laughter. The taller man wasn't nearly so muffled in his amusement; Duo had no idea the normally stoic man could be so loud in his hilarity. Even Heero was chuckling softly as Wufei glowered at Duo.

"Looks can be deceiving," Dorothy said delicately, smirking as she placed a possessive hand on Wufei's biceps.

"You try jumping in sub-zero pool water and see how your package weathers," Wufei retorted. "Just remember this, braid-boy -I've seen yours, too. Very... pretty."

"What's with you people an calling me braid-boy?" Duo grumped good-naturedly, smiling despite it. "And I can't believe you just called my package pretty. I thought you and Doro were the straight ones."

"Oh, damn, that's right," Dorothy sighed. "Cancel the orgy, Wu -we're straight, so we don't know how to be kinky."

"Ew." Heero made a face. "Your sex life is actually the last one I want to hear about, Dorothy."

"And yet, almost always the first one that comes into topic," Quatre pointed out laughingly.

"All you gay people are the same," Dorothy said mockingly. "I demand that my lover and I be treated equally amongst you -straight people have feelings too!"

"Of course you do," Quatre said patronizingly. "Which is why we're very conscientious about your feelings, even though we outnumber you two to one, and we're only saying it because it makes us feel like better people for it."

"I'm not going to be your fag hag anymore," Dorothy mumbled sullenly. "Wufei, Quatre's being mean to me again."

"Quatre, stop being mean to Dorothy."

"Trowa," Quatre said whiningly, "Wufei's scolding me again!"

"Wufei, stop scolding Quatre."

"Do you want me to turn this car around?" Heero demanded. "Sit back, shut up, and if I hear one more peep out of any of you, I'm strapping you to the hood!"

The Hummer jarred suddenly.

"Heero, for God's sake, watch the road!" Duo shrieked, clutching at his door for comfort.

There was a moment of silence.

"That was so surreal," Dorothy mentioned casually. "Daddy, can I have a pony?"

"Shut up, Dorothy."

"Mommy, Daddy just told me to shut up! Tell him I don't have to."

"One more word," Duo said solemnly, "and I'm letting Heero strap you to the hood."

"'Letting' me?"

"Oooh," all four occupying the backseat hummed in breathless awe reminiscent of small children who were witnessing a father about to be effectively put in his place.(2)

The scene was broken by the sudden shrill rang of Heero's cell phone. Heero groaned when he saw the number on the glowing display just before he flipped the phone open and held it aloft. "Lyle, not now -I'm driving."

"If not now, when?" the echoing voice of the weasel broke through, sounding strangely philosophical.

"If not cheese, why whine?" Duo mumbled.

"Who was that? Never mind. Heero, baby, I've been trying to get a hold of you all night! What have you been doing?"

"If you really want to know-" Heero started, slanting a sly look at Duo.

"He doesn't," Duo said warningly.

"He's been doing Duo," Dorothy piped giddily from the backseat. "Enthusiastically. Twice."

"You were listening!"

"Well, I had to make sure my plan to get the two of you laid worked, right?"

"Pervert," Wufei muttered. Dorothy fluttered her eyelashes at him prettily.

"Yeah, but I'm your pervert, Wubear."

"Ah, Dorothy," Lyle said pleasantly. "Always a pleasure." Even said so cordially, anyone with the ability to hear could read into his subliminal context. Evil demon of Hades, go back to your master!

"Lyle," Dorothy said sweetly. "The same." Translation: Didn't you make a contract with my master years ago?

"Listen, Heero, baby," Lyle said, immediately brushing off Dorothy, "there's this new club opening up tonight that's just dying to have you at their grand opening. Very posh establishment -they're willing to pay an obscene sum of cash just for you to show your handsome face."

Lyle sounded absolutely gleeful, giving Duo the impression of an exaggerated cartoon character with dollar signs in his eyes and a lustful expression on his face. And yes, strangely enough, the cartoon character resembled a weasel.

"Tonight?" Heero muttered. "That's really short notice, Lyle. I have plans." Plans that had included him, Duo, and a lot of privacy.

"Cancel them," Lyle said in cheerful dismissal. "Trust me on this, Heero, you want to be promoting that risque movie of yours, and to do that, you need to get back into the public eye from which you've strayed just this far."

Damn it. "Duo, want to go to a club with me?"

"Eh. Sounds fun," Duo said with a casual shrug, secretively pleased that Heero had asked him as he glanced at his boyfriend from the corner of his eye. He smiled bashfully. "I've never been clubbing before."

Heero decided, then and there, that such a statement was tantamount to homicide. Duo Maxwell, never losing himself in the throbbing, anonymous atmosphere in traditional clubbing gear? It was a crime. "Yeah, okay. Lyle, call them up and tell them I'll be there with a date."

"Good boy," Lyle said. "Is he cute?"

"Adorable," Heero confirmed.

Duo fought the blush that was slowly spreading over his cheeks. Instead, he said, sounding quite miffed, "What, is good looks all anyone cares about anymore?"

"Duo's also very kind, sweet, bashful, and even more stubborn than a mule," Heero added fondly. Duo grinned.

"You're so whipped." This, surprisingly, came from Trowa.

"No one asked for any comments from the peanut gallery," Duo said airily, reveling in Heero's 'whipped' status.

"Fabulous! The club is called 42, and it's right on the corner of Abraham and Yule. I'll fax you with a more detailed description. Get there early, but fashionably late. Ta!"

"42?" Wufei muttered. "Just 42? Weird."

"It's the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything," Duo said absently, watching uneasily as Heero cut yet another innocent bystander off at the pass. When no one made any comments, he looked around at all the blank stares.

"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy," Duo added, waiting for the lights to click. When they didn't, he rolled his eyes. "God, don't you people ever read?"

"I think I've seen that movie," Quatre mused.

"There's a movie about it?" Duo exclaimed. "Since when?(3)"

"Since forever," Wufei said smugly. "God, Maxwell, don't you ever watch television?"

Duo narrowed his eyes at the Chinese man. "Touché, Speedo Man."

"Stop calling me Speedo Man!"

Needless to say, by the time Heero pulled into the set parking lot, he seemed to be having this twitching problem under his left eye. The twitch, when seen by either Duo or Wufei, always spurred both or either of them into sporadic bouts of snickering. The Japanese man was seriously considering sneaking some starch in Wufei's underwear drawer, and Duo... Well, Duo had seemed to forgotten that Heero was ace at delighting the body, and he could drag out such pleasures all night if he wanted to.

Oh, that would be fun.

There were only trace amounts of his scowl left when they all sauntered to hair and makeup under Howard's strict orders.

"What have I told you about making that face?" Monica the makeup artist demanded. "Stop it. Right now! Scowling completely ruins your complexion."

"Not to mention increases your chances of fine lines and wrinkles," Relena added in passing.

"Duo thinks it's cute," Heero said innocently.

"Oh, yeah," Duo said, spinning around in the chair beside Heero like an excited six year old would do. "There's nothing more sexy about a man who looks like he's constipated all the time."

Heero shot Duo a good-natured scowl, and the American man grinned wildly, unabashed. "Oh, there it is! Heero, God, take me now!"

Relena snorted. "Somebody got laid. Oh... good morning."

"Morning," Duo said delicately, deciding to ignore the first part of her statement. He watched wearily as a man whose name he vaguely recalled being Paul or Simon come at him with an instrument of makeup application.

"Morning Relena," Quatre chirped, David the makeup artist already working his magic. "You look unnaturally perky for this time of day."

"Four cups of coffee does that," Relena replied. "Five minutes on the set and I already want the day to be over."

"You're putting too much on," Duo said suddenly, shifting back in his chair as if to escape the spongy thing of doom. "I'm supposed to be a pilot, not a crossdresser."

"With that hair, who can tell the difference?" Simon (Paul?) quipped casually, bringing out the tube thing Duo thought was called eyeliner or something. "Hold still..."

"Suck it up, Maxwell," Wufei said from down the way, having his hair pulled into an ultra-tight ponytail at the nape of his neck.

"You're the second person to tell me that today," Duo said accusingly. "What is this, Pound Duo's Delicate Ego Day?"

"Interesting choice of words..."

"God, you're such a pervert, Quatre." The blond shrugged casually, as if to say 'what can you do?'

"I blame Dorothy. Things like that must be communally contagious. While I'm thinking about it, I forgot to mention that Sanja is pregnant again."

"Which one is she?" Heero asked absently, fighting the urge to reflexively glance at the blond man as Monica applied the makeup around his eyes.

"Tenth oldest, I think. The one with the birthmark shaped like Florida on her right forearm? Apparently I've attended two of her children's births, but there are so many of those that I've forgotten..."

"What are you talking about?" Duo asked, puzzled.

"My sisters," Quatre replied. "I have twenty-nine. It's hard to keep them straight."

Twenty-nine? "Is that even possible?"

"Seventy-two nieces and nephews," Trowa added. "I'm almost certain Quatre's father is driven by the simple need to insert his genes in every gene pool known to man, just to make him feel like he populated the world. As you can imagine, he's a little upset that I'm dating his only son."

"Gay men can't exactly do the baby-making machine bit," Quatre said delicately before grinning at Trowa. "But you have to admit, Father did give me one thing you appreciate -his rather healthy libido."

Trowa nodded wisely. "That's about the only favor that man ever inadvertently did me."

"You people really can't go five minutes without talking about sex, can you?" Relena said with a smirk.

"Says the girl who commented that someone got laid thirty seconds after walking in," Wufei retorted.

"Your welcome, by the way," Dorothy murmured, slanting a catty smirk at Duo.

"Why?" Duo muttered sullenly. "You got a free peep show out of it. You should be thanking us."

"Don't think we owe you any favors," Heero said. "We didn't kill your boyfriend this morning. That's thanks enough."

"As if I'd let you," Wufei said smugly.

Any further conversation was cut when Howard stormed in, demanding just what was taking so damn long and informing all of them that they had a full schedule today, and they really needed to get their asses in gear. And so began another hectic day on the set.


(1) Hmm, Heero's Glares seem to be saying a lot in both my fics... Coincidentally (or not) it seems to have a lot to do with torture, murder, and castration. Er. Well. One threat-glare of castration. It's implied. Why do I work better when I'm dead tired again?...

(2) This entire car scene is courtesy of me, my brother, and my parents trapped in the same car when yours truly is on a sugar high. I do believe my mother muttered something akin to, "No wonder we have four different vehicles... If only we could afford the gas to drive our separate cars..."

(3) The book is so much better than the movie, but even I have to admit that hearing an entire beginning broadwayesque song entitled "So Long and Thanks For the Fish" sung by dolphins is aesthetically pleasing to my humor gland. So is the idea that humans are, in fact, the third most intelligent species on Earth, with dolphins being second. So much for high expectations. (On that note, I'm glad I have a friend who works at a video rental store, mostly due to the fact I get to see a lot of movies before they officially come out on their release date. Yay, free rental!)


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