If At First You Do Succeed…

He should have expected this. But he hadn't.

He should have known better than to get this emotionally involved…but he hadn't.

That thought didn't make him feel any better. And now there was no turning back.

So much hinged on this one moment…

When he'd first started trying to become Heero's friend, he had hoped he would win the stoic boy's friendship.

And he had.

But in addition to it, he'd also won Heero's love and devotion.

That was definitely unplanned.

And now… Now he was faced with the most important decision of his short life.

To try…or not to try? He had no idea if a relationship between them would work. But what worried him was that he didn't know if he was capable of the kind of love Heero needed. And if things went sour… Well, there was still a war on, and he and Heero were needed to fight for the colonies.

But Heero also needed him. And Duo had never been able to say no to him.

That right there should have clued him in. No matter how cold Heero had been to him, or how much he'd pissed him off – if anyone else had stolen parts from Deathscythe, he wouldn't have hesitated to let Shinigami visit them in the middle of the night, no matter how much they might be needed for the war! – Duo had never been able to walk away from him. And despite the many opportunities, he'd never been able to bring himself to hurt Heero in return…no matter how much Heero had hurt him.

That told him something. Something he had always had a hard time understanding…until now.

Heero's words from only moments before came back to him in a rush and his breath caught in his throat. "I think I'm in love with you, Duo. And I…I wanted to know if you think you could ever…love me back?"

And the look in Heero's eyes…he had been steeling himself for what he felt was the inevitable rejection. He expected Duo to say no.

That alone made him want to say yes, just so he could stop seeing the barely-concealed hurt in those deep blue eyes.

But he never lied. And he'd never hurt Heero by giving him false hope.

And yet…

It was said that true happiness was falling in love with your best friend…and Heero was that. He didn't know if he would ever be able to fall in love with Heero…but the idea held a certain appeal.

Which also told him something.

The choices we regret the most are the ones we never make, the words resounded and echoed in his head. He couldn't not make this choice. For Heero, and himself.

He just had to hope he made the right one.

Taking a deep breath, thoughts whirling faster than the speed of light finally winding down now that he'd made his decision, Duo looked up into those searching deep blue eyes and gave Heero a tentative, genuine smile. "I'd…like to try," he said, knowing that was the only thing he could promise at this stage. So many things could go wrong; both of them could get hurt, but most likely Heero, as he was already emotionally invested here. But he'd never been one to quit at the first sign of trouble and he wasn't about to back out now.

A small spark of happiness grew in those Prussian blue depths and Heero returned the smile with a small one of his own. "Thank you," he said softly, before slowly pulling Duo into a soft, almost chaste kiss, giving Duo plenty of time to pull away if he wanted.

Feeling those loving arms – arms that could bend steel bars in half, and yet he'd always felt safe when Heero touched him with them – encircle him, Duo felt a faint fear for the future fluttering around his heart. He so wanted this to work out, but there were no guarantees in life…and especially in love.

But he consoled himself with the fact that even if things didn't work out…

He could always try again.

Only somehow, he got the feeling they wouldn't need to.