Sequel to Kiss the Cook
"Heero? What's this?" Quatre looked at a loss, sitting in a plastic hospital chair and staring at the small, palm sized computer that Heero was holding out to him.
Heero, looking ragged and on the edge of exhaustion, sat in the chair beside him. He made the chair legs squeak on the floor as he moved it even closer to Quatre.
"Damned traffic," Wu Fei growled as he joined them, rain slicked coat draped over one arm, and raindrops sparkling in his loose dark hair. It looked as if he had tumbled straight out of bed and into the teeth of the storm. "How is he?"
"In surgery," Heero replied tensely as Quatre looked at the pictures on his small computer, frowning and confused.
Trowa appeared with a tray of steaming cups of coffee and tea. He put the tray down on a small table, on top of old, well used magazines. "I'll get another tea," he murmured, but Wu Fei shook his head, no, as he ran his fingers through his hair, scattering raindrops, and sat down beside Quatre.
"What did the doctor say?" Wu Fei asked impatiently.
"Broken arm, concussion," Heero replied in a voice that was far from steady. "The truck that hit his car, was transporting construction debris, though." He paused, swallowed hard, trying to control his emotions, and finished,"Some of it went through the windshield. The surgeon is... removing... pieces."
"Damn!" Wu Fei swore and then in frustration, "What was Maxwell doing out in this weather in the first place?"
"Getting ingredients for our dinner," Quatre replied for Heero, sounding guilt ridden. "He... he wanted it to be perfect... to impress us."
Wu Fei shook his head in disbelief as he ran his hands over his face, looking suddenly older and very weary. "Fool," he whispered, but without any sting to it.
Quatre finished looking at the pictures and then looked at Heero questioningly, but Heero was staring at the hallway that led to the operating room, pale and anxious. Quatre put a hand over his and he started, looking back at Quatre with blood shot eyes.
"They are pictures of you and Duo, having dinner," Quatre prompted, realizing that Heero needed a distraction of some kind or he would soon be forcing his way into the operating room.
Heero nodded shakily as Wu Fei leaned in to look at the pictures himself, the man not sure what they signified.
"It's our first dinner together, in our own home," Heero explained. "He made chicken florentine, creme brulet, and a salad with his own vinaigrette. It was... wonderful. He said that, during a mission down time, he worked at a restaurant, bussing tables for the free meals. He befriended the chef and the man taught him how to cook some of his dishes."
"Duo knows how to cook," Trowa said with a smile.
"Yes," Heero replied. "He would have won our contest easily."
Quatre chuckled, startling all of them. "He is such a... scamp. He was enjoying all of this, confident that he was going to be able to surprise all of us in the end."
Wu Fei scowled. "That....!" He cut his next words off and settled for an irritated growl.
A doctor approached them, looking tired as he switched off his antiseptic field. "Mr. Yuy?" he asked, looking at them all. when Heero stepped forward, he faced him and said, "Mr. Maxwell is in stable condition. No major organs were penetrated, luckily, and the debris missed his intestines. He's a very lucky man, considering that he looked like a pin cushion when he came in. The nurses are cleaning him up right now. When he's back in his room, you'll be allowed to visit, though he won't be conscious for awhile yet."
Heero thanked him and then sank back into his chair when the surgeon left, hands covering his face and breath going out in relief. Quatre squeezed his shoulder in comfort, but was surprised when Heero smiled wanly up at him. "He did win the contest, right?"
Wu Fei looked ready to debate that point, mouthed words silently, and then gave a small bow of defeat. "I'm convinced that he would have."
Trowa snorted. "No arguments here."
Quatre smiled warmly and chuckled. "I think we are all agreed, Heero. Only Duo could win a contest from a hospital bed."
Heero closed his computer and slipped it into his coat pocket. He smiled at them all. "It wasn't about winning, you realize? It was about friendship, about getting together. Duo thought that we had drifted too far apart. Meals are about family, he told me."
Wu Fei blushed in embarrassment, but he was nodding. "Family," he echoed.
"Of course we are," Quatre agreed as he slipped an arm around Trowa's waist.
"Yes," Trowa said, nodding firmly. "He's right."
Heero stood as a nurse appeared to take him to Duo. "We're Duo's family," he told the woman. "May we all see him?"
She looked uneasy, but then decided, "Mr. Maxwell's condition isn't critical. If you keep it brief, Mr. Yuy, I think it will be all right."
"I promise," he replied and then motioned all of them to follow him. "If he's awake, we'll tell him that he won the contest."
"He'll be insufferable," Wu Fei complained.
"For months," Quatre agreed.
"Years," Trowa sighed.
"Years and years," Heero chuckled as he held open the door to Duo's room..