Thanksgiving is primarily an American tradition, and sometimes
it gives me pause to look around at the motley crew I usually end up celebrating
it with and realize… there isn’t a one of us who grew up with
the holiday. Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, colony born… there weren’t
any turkey or relish recipes lingering in our pasts.
Though, I don’t suppose you could find another group with more to
be thankful for. The very fact that we’d all survived the war was
reason enough to gather once a year at Quatre’s house to share a
meal and the day. And if the traditions we had formed were a little bit… odd,
who’s to judge?
‘I can’t believe they’re beating us… just the
two of them,’ Trowa panted as he jogged by me, taking his position
in our ragged line.
‘Maybe if we didn’t stuff ourselves sick before we played,’ I
grumbled, but he only snorted. I suspect I was bitching to the choir.
‘They are not winning,’ Quatre ground out, wiping sweat from
his eyes and glaring down the field where Duo was cavorting with the football. ‘I’m
not losing this bet… no way, no how.’
‘It’s five to nothing, Winner,’ I informed him, as if
he didn’t already know. ‘I think losing is something you’re
going to have to start thinking about.’
He made a somewhat inarticulate sound, but then the ball was snapped and
once more we were scrambling around trying to lay hands on Duo Maxwell
, who apparently is the genetic cross between a greased eel and a gazelle.
Who was working with his own personal tank in the form of Rashid.
‘Six to nothing,’ Trowa groaned as he picked himself up yet
again and we dragged ourselves back into some sort of formation.
‘You guys want me to play with one hand tied behind my back?’ Duo
laughed as he all but cartwheeled by us to his own side of the ‘field’.
‘Yes!’ Abdul cried, still sitting on the ground and I suspected
he’d gotten run over by his former captain.
Duo laughed loudly, and they traded barbs for a minute while Abdul got
himself vertical with Duo’s help. Sally trotted past me, dusting
playfully at my butt and giving me a wink.
‘Lotta dirt on there, Chang,’ she grinned. ‘What have
you been doing? Just sitting around?’
‘I haven’t caught you stopping him, woman!’ I teased,
but she only waved as she headed for her favored position on the outside.
I found myself standing next to Heero while we waited for the rest of the
field to sort themselves out.
‘We should throw her off the team,’ I mused, ‘I think
she’s rooting for Duo.’
Because, now that I stopped to think about it, it was likely that my girlfriend
was actually pretty happy with the notion of the four of us pilots having
to pose for Duo. I turned to Heero to express that thought and found him… a
million miles away.
He was staring across at Duo, watching as the man huddled with Rashid,
snickering and waving his arms, obviously outlining some master plan that
had Rashid grinning like a wicked little boy.
‘Will you look at him?' Heero breathed, and his expression made
me think I should throw him off the team too. ‘He’s… come
It brought back to me memories of the first year after Duo had come into
our lives again. Thanksgiving had been arranged with all the delicacy Quatre
and Heero could manage. The usual guest list had been pared to the bone
to make sure Duo didn’t balk and refuse to attend. In those early
days, he had still been trying to see how he fit. Trying to ease his way
into Heero’s life. Like a man trying to slip into a pool without
disturbing the surface of the water. Unsure… hesitant… skittish.
Everything we did was thought, and rethought where he had been concerned.
He had indeed come a very long way. I watched for a moment as he made
exaggerated ‘framing’ gestures with his hands, eyeing Quatre
until the blond was beet red and sputtering.
Grinning, I turned to comment to Heero, only to find the man with an unmistakable
sheen in his eyes, and an expression that was some muddy mix of joy and
melancholy and relief and pride. I sighed.
‘Idiot,’ I muttered, not wanted to draw any attention. ‘Don’t
let him see you like that.’
It made him blink, and then it made him blush, and then he ducked his
head. ‘Be right back…’
‘Go on,’ I told him and he turned to jog for the house.
‘Giving up, Yuy?’ Duo called after him, and it drew laughs
from both sides.
‘Little boy’s room,’ I covered, and let them all snicker
over the line. Rather a few potty jokes than the awkwardness of the truth.
Not that I could blame Heero, watching Duo clamber up onto Rashid’s
shoulders, one hand held behind his back, and maniacal grin plastered on
his face… I couldn’t help feeling a little bit of that joy
‘Should we wait for him?’ he wanted to know, but Trowa just
‘I seriously doubt it matters,’ he said, and I had to agree.
I’d never had to actually pose for an artist before… I sure
as hell hoped he’d at least give us a sheet…
Fiction : GW :