title: Flu

author: trixie

disclaimer: gundam wing is not mine, because if it was, i'd be rich and that would rock. yes.

summary: Heero is sick, but he still has to get the groceries. (GW, Heero/Duo)

notes: for fancyfigures, her Mother's Day Ficlet. ^_^

this was supposed to be 500 words or less, but i'm verbose...


There was always one wheel that was dodgy. Or the frame was bent. Or just *something*. But Heero had an uncanny knack to pick the exact worst cart in the store. Normally, this was just a cross to bear, as he was definitely manly enough to strong-arm the cart into submission, but today he was Sick, and Sick People should not have to fight with carts.

He was sure of it.

Sick People should also not have to go get groceries, but if said Sick Person has let the shopping go for a few weeks, and said Sick Person now has only stale crackers and expired cheese to eat, said Sick Person is S.O.L., as it were.

Heero was not happy about any of this, and to top it off, it was five o'clock when he realized he needed to go out, so he had to jockey for position with all the yuppies that had been at work all day. Thank god this store had self-check, because if he had to deal with a checker after all this...

He turned the corner, and his heart stopped. In the middle of the fresh fruit section, sizing up a mango, was Duo Maxwell. Five foot, eight inches, 145 pounds (roughly), bright blue eyes that sometimes looked violet, ready smile, good disposition, and hair... hair that went down to his ass. Thick, lustrous hair, *clean* hair, kept back in a sensible braid. *Duo* freakin' Maxwell, in the grocery store, getting hit on by some chirpy girl with boy-cut hair, right then, just when Heero was there, just when Heero was *sick*, unshaven, dripping out the nose, skin pasty from fever, in his freakin' pajama pants, hadn't had a shower in two days...

Heero knew when he was defeated. He would not go down without a fight, though. He swung his cart around quickly, ready to make his escape. Which he would have made, too, if he hadn't just knocked down the entire cardboard display of cookies. The crash was legendary, bringing the whole fruits and vegetables section to a standstill for a shattering moment. The only store employee in sight was little more than a blur as he or she dashed away. Heero sighed.

Just his luck. This was *not* supposed to happen.

It *ached* to kneel down to pick everything up, but what choice did he have? If he was a whole other person, without his charming quirks and compulsions, he might be able to walk away. But there were boxes of cookies everywhere, and the cheerful cartoon character was in two morbid pieces...

"Need a hand?"

Heero knew that voice. He heard it every morning as Duo passed Mrs. Langstrom's apartment on his way out to work. Heero always waited until after Duo had left to leave, so he could hear Duo say goodbye to her. He could even watch Duo from his peephole. And every morning, he told himself he should just go out there, because then Duo would probably talk to him, too.

He knew that he would, someday.

"You ok? You look a little pale." Duo flushed. "I'm sorry, that was really rude. But we're neighbors, right? You're in 242, Yuy. I'm 269, Maxwell. Duo. That's my first name." Duo lowered his eyes and reassembled the spokesbunny. "Anyway, you look a little under the weather, if you don't mind me saying so."

Heero shrugged. "Flu." He then proceeded to sneeze violently all over himself.

"Man, that sucks," Duo sighed. "You've got the flu, and you still have to do your own shopping... It sucks being out on your own sometimes, doesn't it?" Duo smiled as he shoved the cookies back into the display. "I just moved here about six months ago. Still learning the ropes and making new friends. It's kinda weird, like being cut off from everything... Sorry. You don't really want to hear my pity party." His whole face turned bright red.

It had never occurred to Heero that Duo might feel anything but absolutely perfect. It's how Duo made him feel. "I know what you mean. It's not... easy meeting people."

"No," Duo agreed. "Hey, tell you what... Why don't we finish up here together, and then I can make you some dinner when we get back. Sick People should *not* have to cook for themselves."

Heero smiled, just a little, in the corners of his lips. "You... wouldn't mind?"

"No!" Duo exclaimed, a bit too readily. "I... actually, I've wanted to meet you for some time, now. That... sounds stalkerish, and it's not, I swear. It's just... I don't know. Hope you don't mind me saying so," Duo added meekly.

Heero blinked. He reached out for Duo's hand to help him stand back up again. "No. I don't mind at all. At all."

Duo beamed.

Heero followed Duo around the store, shuffling beside him as Duo wrestled with the cart. He kept expecting Duo to turn and laugh at him, because things *never* went his way like this. But Duo just shyly brushed his hand against Heero's as they walked.

Heero knew there was a reason he was against flu shots.