Aggressive Affection

Feelings of aggression are the absence of the love drug in your veins.

Cleverly concealing primal urges often felt but rarely seen.

Savage Garden – Gunning Down Romance

Aggression. Something Heero had known – and been surrounded by – all his life. Violence, hostility, anger… He was a soldier, he fought, he killed; you couldn't get much more aggressive than that.

Love. Something Heero was only just beginning to be aware of. And it scared the holy fucking hell out of him.

From what – admittedly little – he knew of the rare and elusive creature known as 'Love,' it supposedly instilled one with happiness, peacefulness, and an urge to be affectionate towards the object of one's devotion…

Why then, when he was almost positive that he was in love with Duo Maxwell…did he still sometimes have the urge to strangle the baka with his own braid?

Probably because despite the fact that I love him, he's still the most annoying person in the entire Earth Sphere, Heero thought. It seemed incongruous that he could both desire someone and still be irked by them. That two seemingly opposite emotions – love and aggression – could be invoked in turn by the same person.

And yet…

He'd spent most of his entire life being trained to be covertly, if not overtly, aggressive. Until Duo came into his life – and shot him, twice! – Heero hadn't thought he'd had it in him to be gentle.

But Duo had come into his life. And he'd taught Heero many things, the least and greatest of which was friendship.

Love he'd learned all on his own…but without those first tentative offers of a relationship beyond just comrades, Heero might never have been able to start his lessons.

And another thing he'd learned from all the play-fighting he and Duo engaged in – aggression didn't necessarily mean violent. The flipside of aggression was strength. You could be aggressive by showing strength, but you didn't necessarily have to hurt anyone. He was ware that he was a strong personality; so was Duo. And despite the fact that they argued and fought – sometimes with words, sometimes with fists – they still cared about each other. Aggression tempered by affection. So aggression wasn't necessarily bad, was it? Especially when it was tempered by love.

And love…wasn't necessarily good; unrequited love being one of the worst things he could think of.

Thankfully, he had never had to experience it; around the same point in time when he'd first figured out his feelings for Duo, the braided pilot had approached him about a relationship. So he hadn't had to suffer with niggling doubts and unfulfilled yearnings for more than a few days.

Duo Maxwell could infuriate him…but he also invoked inside Heero a tender passion the likes of which he'd never thought himself capable. Heero had found that as long as he was with Duo, he could be both strong and tender. And Deathscythe's pilot was just as able to give as good he got; Heero didn't have to worry about unintentionally hurting him.

Physically, at least. And when it came to emotions, Duo was always willing to tell him what he'd done wrong – loudly, and at length – and eventually, what he could do to make things right.

He was possessive by nature – normally expressed in overprotectiveness – but Duo didn't seem to mind. The other boy was just as protective of him. And while possessiveness and love also didn't seem to fit together, Heero had always thought that if you didn't need – and want – someone with you…then how could you really love them?

Heero's aggressive tendencies were just his way of showing Duo that he needed him in his life. Luckily, Duo was just unconventional enough to understand him…to accept his quirks…and reciprocate them.

Looking across the room at where Duo was involved in an elaborate pantomime impersonation of Howard when he got drunk at a Sweepers luau for the benefit of the other pilots, a small smile stole unconsciously across his face. He's…unpredictable…impossible…and I love him for it.

For loving me the way I love him; the way I need to be loved.