The Choker

By Tzigane

The soft sputter of Duo's motorcycle notified him that all was not well with his engine as he pulled over by the side of the road. /Damn,/ he thought. /Just what I need. Late for meeting Heero already and here I am by the side of the frigging road in the middle of nowhere./ He sighed quietly. Well, there wasn't much help for it. It was dusk already and heat lightning danced on the horizon, lighting up the sky with feathers of bright blue against purple and pink that was fading into navy and the deep black of night. /Great. Just perfect./

After a moment's consideration, he began to walk, pushing the bike with him. There was no help for it, after all, except to try and find somewhere he could get some help or borrow a few tools and try to fix the blessed thing himself. /He's not going to be happy with me./

Full dark had settled in by the time he saw it; an oil lamp shining from the window of a small ramshackle house. It was a relief to see it; he'd begun to think he was alone in the universe. As the first raindrops of the storm that had snuck up (it hadn't been heat lightning after all) began plopping into the dry dusty yard, he parked the bike at the edge of the small porch to try and keep it out of the rain and hopped up on the rickety porch to knock on the door. "Hello?" he called, frowning as he brushed away a film of raindrops from dripping bangs. "Anybody home?" The door opened slowly and he looked up a good three inches into brilliant emerald eyes, his own eyes widening. "H-hello," he managed again, blinking rapidly as a slight smile filtered over the pale face before him. "I'm, my bike? It broke down and I was hoping maybe you had a phone or you could loan me some tools so maybe I could...?"

The tall slender boy before him shook his head and signed slowly enough for Duo to understand. Thank god he even knew sign language. [No phone and it's raining. Best for you to work on it tomorrow. Come in.]

With a slight frown, the braid-haired boy followed the nameless young man inside, glancing around. Though a bit rustic, the house seemed to have all the amenities even though it was lit by candles and hurricane lamps. He waited for the mysterious man to turn around so that he could see him before he said, "Is the electricity out?"


/Figures,/ Duo thought with a sigh. God, Heero was going to be so pissed off with him but there was nothing new about that lately. Heero always seemed to be angry with him these days and he had begun to spend large amounts of time with the little ebony-haired sex-god who'd joined their small group of friends a short time ago. In a way, it was a relief; it meant Heero hit him less and wasn't as interested in sex, either. If it hadn't gotten better, Duo believed he'd have slit Heero's throat for him by now. /That bastard. And he'll beat the hell out of me when I get home, I'm sure./

Silently, he followed the denim-clad mute up the stairs to a small room, eyes taking in the other's appearance. Jeans, a dark blue-green turtleneck, tennis shoes. Lovely, really, slender and tall. Duo would bet Heero would like this one, too. He seemed the kind you could easily abuse.

He almost missed the signing hands, he was paying so much attention to the rest of him. [Stay here for the night. No matter what you hear, don't come out of this room, okay?]

It was a pretty damned weird request, that was for sure. "Okay," Duo shrugged, glancing around. The place seemed pretty comfortable. Besides, he understood about not wanting anyone to see what was happening. "Thanks. Hey, man, what's your name?"

[You can call me Trowa. And you're welcome.]

The door shut behind the mysterious Trowa and Duo plopped himself down on the bed with a huge yawn. God, he was tired, so incredibly... ti....


He woke to the sounds of shouting, loud and angry. "You whore! What the hell were you doing with that boy in my house?" Rapid thumps, the sound of hysterical cries. "Idiot slut, what did you do?"

Sobs -- audible sobs? "I swear! I swear, I didn't do anything. I promise, I didn't do anything!"

Oh, Jesus God, somebody was going to be punished over him. That wasn't fair, it wasn't... it wasn't justice, as the little sex-god would say. With determination, Duo rose, his face gaining a certain stubbornness. Well, damn it all to hell, he was going downstairs and he wasn't going to let it happen.

In a rush, he pushed open the door and headed downstairs, only to stop at the foot of them. There was a tall blond standing nearby, shaking blood from a wood axe. Oh, Lord. Duo hoped he'd been slaughtering chickens. "You. What the hell are you doing in my house? You been messing around with Trowa, boy? He's mine, you know." A maniacal gleam lit his eye as he stepped forward, the axe swinging slightly in his grasp.

With a loud squeak, Duo scrambled around him and headed for the nearest door, flinging it open and stepping into his goriest nightmare, a kitchen covered in slippery blood. "Oh, fuck me runnin'," he moaned, shaking as he slipped into a pool of the coppery sticky stuff. "Fuck, oh, Jesus, oh, my God." Morbidly, he could swear he saw a green eye swimming around in some of that blood as he rose to run again, but no one came after him. Confusion lit his face as he moved back to the door he'd come through and glanced out. No one. That scared him even worse as he stepped into the room, the door swinging shut behind him. He heard it open only seconds later and turned rapidly as if to run only to see a pale Trowa standing in the doorway. "We have to go," Duo babbled hysterically, grabbing Trowa's hand. "Come on!"

He pushed open the door to the kitchen and stood still in disbelief. Even though his black jeans felt stiff and still smelled of the blood that had soaked into them, the kitchen itself was spotless. "God," he breathed, holding Trowa's hand tightly. It was then that a shout came from the other room.


With a gasp, Trowa tried to pull his hand from Duo's but Duo wouldn't allow it, pulling him instead out onto the back porch and running with him out into the rain. He stopped still with shock at the sight of the tall blond in rain gear clutching a bucket over a well. A slow smirk crossed the man's face as he turned, that axe in hand and Duo cried out for himself and Trowa both, running around the edge of the house as he heard the bucket drop, giving a heavy splash when it reached the bottom.

He pulled Trowa behind him on the bike and attempted to kick it into gear. The low growl of an engine reluctant to start made him moan but eventually the engine revved up and then they were gone, his braid whipping back, Trowa's face pressed to his neck as an angry howl rang out behind them.


Morning dawned bright and clear, the rain having cleared the dust from the air and cooled down the temperature to just the point of being comfortable. Stretched out beneath a tree not far from the roadside, Duo sighed softly, his hands in Trowa's thick auburn hair that was still damp from the wild ride and the rain of the night before. He was lovely, really. Duo was glad that he'd taken him away from that place, away from the same sort of torture that Heero had so often committed against him. With care, he leaned forward to press a gentle kiss against the young man's forehead, hand resting on his throat and he frowned at the slight lump he felt beneath the cotton of his turtleneck. What the hell? Moving carefully so as not to wake his sleeping new friend, he lightly pulled the material away enough to catch a glimpse of a small choker and, with nimble thief's fingers, he unlatched it. It only took a moment to pry the catch open and his eyes became huge as he saw the pictures within. On one side was a picture of a man who looked much like himself with Trowa and on the other was a picture of Heero with the little sex-god, all of them dressed in clothing from last century. "What the...?"

"Duo?" The sound was rusty, as if it hadn't been used in far too long. "I feel funny."

With wide eyes, Duo watched as Trowa lifted his head from his lap...

....and it slowly, oh, so exquisitely slowly, tumbled in a profusion of stringing blood back down....

The only thing that had been holding it on all this time had been the choker.