For [info]clarediva- it didn't come out as fluffy as I wanted, but I think it's waffy... but then I am weird about these things... *grin*

 

Duo was waiting for me in the cockpit. “What do you think?” He asked me as I sat down in the co-pilot’s seat and began my final checks. Duo had already finished his. We’d gone over the ship that was to be our home for the foreseeable future with a fine tooth comb- just in case the government hadn’t been quite as generous as it seemed.

“I think it’s better than ending up in prison.” I told him.

He gave me a lopsided smile. “I can agree with you on that.” He stretched and watched the clock. “Though you know… there’ll be a lot of things I’ll miss.”

I nodded. “Still, it’s not like we’re going to be out of touch with civilization Duo. We’re just on the permanent run between Earth and Mars- we’ll be able to get out at both ends and all.”

Under supervision- and for a limited time.” Duo snorted. “The government doesn’t want to lose such precious commodities as ourselves...”

“It’s only for five years,” I reminded him. “After that you’ll be free again.” I knew this punishment was going to chafe Duo the most. I didn’t mind the constriction- but then, we’d be traveling in space- I never felt trapped out there…

Duo snorted. “I’ll bet they’re hoping that one of us snaps and kills the other.”

“I have no intention of letting you kill me.”

“Why are you assuming I’d be the one that snapped?” He said indignantly.

“Well, I know I’m perfectly sane,” I said just for the sheer amusement of watching him choke. Before he could retort the tower signaled that we were cleared for liftoff.

Once we were safely in space, Duo turned to look at me. “Perfectly sane?”

Of course, comparatively speaking.”

“Oh?”

Compared to you.” He made a face and finished feeding the data into the autopilot.

“I’ll bet you go crazy first.”

Oh really?”

Sure. Locked up in here with me for five years? You always said I drove you crazy when we roomed together.”

“Oh, that was different.” I got up from my chair and headed towards the door.

“How?” He asked.

I paused. What the hell- we were going to be stuck together here for a long time. Not like I could hide it… “I meant it in a physical fashion. So please- no running around half-naked like you did back then?”

I got myself out the door before Duo could react. Better to give him time to realize he was stuck on a ship with someone who… well, preferred men. I didn’t think Duo would take it too badly- he was fine with Quatre and Trowa after all…

Those two had been put on a colony hopper ship- Quatre had grinned when he’d told me. He didn’t see being locked up with Trowa for five years a hardship in the slightest… In fact he mentioned something about finally being able to spend some time together. Lucky bastard…

The galley was well-stocked. I found a bottle of water and went to my cabin. I wondered how long I should give Duo to digest this new information…

I really hoped he’d be okay with it. It’s not like I planned to stalk him or seduce him or anything like that… even if I had the faintest idea how to go about it… if I had I would’ve tried ages ago…

Sitting down at the computer, I pulled up the ship’s manifest- wouldn’t hurt to triple check everything… make sure it had all gotten on the ship with us. The Mars colony would be upset if we didn’t have everything they needed.

“Hey.”

I turned. Duo stood in the doorway. He wasn’t smiling, but he didn’t look mad either.

“Hey.”

“Autopilot’s all set.”

“That’s good.” My heart sank. Had I doomed us to stilted conversations for the rest of the trip? Was he really that uncomfortable?

“Um… can I ask you something?” Duo looked down at his feet.

“Of course.”

Did you mean… um… when you left… you said… does that mean… that you…” He stumbled over the words. I wanted to speak, to take the question off his lips, but my mouth had gone dry. He took a deep breath. “Are you… attracted to me?”

I blinked. That wasn’t quite the question I had anticipated.

I tried to lighten the tone. “Who wouldn’t be?”

A smile curved the corner of his mouth. “You’d be surprised.” He stepped into the room, moved closer to me. “Does that mean you are?”

I couldn’t lie. Not to Duo. “Yes. I have been for a long time. But don’t worry…” Before I could finish, I found myself with an armful of Duo.

“Oh good!” His mouth descended on mine and I lost myself in that caress. “And here I was thinking it was going to be a hell of a long trip, stuck on a ship with the person I wanted the most and couldn’t have…”

“You want me?” Was all I could manage. He chuckled.

“Not obvious enough?” He kissed me again. “I’ve wanted you for a very long time. I was happy it was you they stuck me with on this run- even though I never thought you’d want…”

“That’s how I felt. I was happy it was you- but I knew you’d never…” I stopped and he laughed.

“Well, I admit that I hoped a few years of being stuck together might drive you to desperation.”

I cupped his cheek, pulled him down for another kiss. “Madness maybe- not desperation.”

He laughed again. “Then we’ll be mad together.” He pulled me up from my chair and pushed me to the bed.

Later, as our breathing slowed and we held each other close under the blankets, he whispered:

“You know, I think these five years are going to fly by.”