A/N: My first M*A*S*H ficlet based on Season 7, Episode 22, "Preventative Medicine." Some of the dialog is taken directly from the episode (though I shortened it to an extent and it's not exactly the same).
Warnings: SLASH, angst
Beta: FirstLaugh-LastTears who is so amazing that she once made me go blind!
"Dammit! Why don't you just stab him? Cutting into a healthy body is mutilation!" BJ Hunnicut shouted. "If you do this – you do it alone!"
"Fine, but if you're going to keep talking about it, put a mask on. I don't want to run the slightest risk of infecting him." Benjamin Franklin "Hawkeye" Pierce snapped back at him.
They parted ways, both angry and frustrated. Hawkeye had been in the army far longer than BJ, but BJ had suffered just as much as he had, if not more in the service of the army. Therefore, Hawkeye couldn't understand why BJ was so against this operation.
The patient in question was a perfectly healthy colonel they had both drugged. He was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of young men, and would kill many more if they didn't do anything to stop him. So Hawkeye was going to take out his appendix, it was a simple, harmless operation that would get the psychotic bastard off the front lines for a good two weeks.
He stormed into the operating room and did his job. The operation went smoothly, no complications. But as it went on, he started to realize what he was doing. Jesus, what was he doing? He was as bad as the man he was operating on. The man was crazy and needed to be stopped, but that didn't make what he was doing right. It was wrong, and what was worse, in the end it wouldn't help anyone.
BJ fumed all the way to his tent. He was against it because it was wrong. It went against his Hippocratic Oath. And even if the operation got rid of the bastard for good – they would just send someone else, possibly someone worse. The fact of the matter was that this was a war. People would die. There was nothing they could do to change that, therefore the only thing to do in order to stay sane was accept it. Still, he did understand Hawkeye's motives.
That understanding helped him calm down. The rather foolish doctor in the operating room should never have been sent here. Well, none of them belonged here, but Hawkeye was especially out of place. While he could survive, he let things get to him too easily. His heart bled for everyone; patients, soldiers, his comrades, the children, everyone.
He did his best to help and when his efforts failed he blamed himself. Losing a patient, for Hawkeye was the greatest sin. Unlike most doctors, especially ones in the military, he didn't understand that some patients were just beyond help. Or rather, he understood, he just didn't accept it.
One day, BJ feared that it would push him over the edge. He sighed; he didn't want that to happen. He loved Hawkeye. They'd been through so much together, more than most people ever shared. They were each other's confidant, best friend, and more recently, lover. He would do anything for Hawkeye, just as Hawkeye would do anything for him. He just wished there was some way to help him.
Hawkeye trudged into the swamp. Unimaginable guilt and sadness dripping from every pore.
BJ was sitting on his bunk, he back turned to the door. "So?" He asked simply.
Hawkeye sighed, "It was pink and perfect, and I tossed it in the scrap bucket. At least he won't be sending us anymore customers for awhile."
BJ shook his head in disappointment, he'd hoped (though he'd known it was a foolish hope) that Hawkeye wouldn't go through with it. "Uh-huh. Radar was just in here. There's a new batch of wounded coming in soon."
As if on cue, the announcement that there were wounded in the compound came over the PA system, echoing around every corner of the camp. Hawkeye dropped onto his bunk, his head bowed, staring at his knees.
BJ stood and moved to the door, pausing beside his friend. He reached out and squeezed the man's shoulder, mumbling softly, "You treated a symptom. The disease goes merrily on."
"I know, I just…"
"I know. You don't have to explain."
Hawkeye reached up and squeezed BJ's wrist. BJ smiled and pulled Hawkeye off the bunk and into his arms. "I love you, you silly fool."
"I love you too caterpillar face."
They kissed, BJ's mustache tickling Hawkeye, making his face twitch occasionally. They parted and swept out of the tent. It was time to work.
Later that night, when the camp was quiet and Winchester, their other roommate was asleep, Hawkeye crept across the tent and slipped into BJ's bunk. There was barely enough room for one person, none the less two, so he settled himself on top of the other man.
BJ had been waiting for him. He wrapped his arms around the man and held him tightly. Tonight, they both needed the comfort of just being in each other's arms. They stayed like that for a long time, arms wrapped about each other, legs tangled together, not moving or speaking.
Then Hawkeye pressed a small kiss to BJ's throat. He kissed his way up to the man's lips, and gently pressed them against his own. The kiss was simple, but unendingly sweet. Soon, it grew heated. Their hands wandered up and down each other's bodies, retracing familiar pathways.
Soon they were both naked as the day they were born. With quick, sure movements, as if they had done this many times before, Hawkeye impaled himself on BJ's smooth cock. They both groaned, but lowly, trying to be as quiet as possible.
They were not ashamed of each other, but this was the early 1950s. Homosexuality was not accepted by anyone. It wasn't even okay to speak of it. Also, they didn't want word of their affair to reach BJ's wife. He didn't want to lose his daughter.
Hawkeye didn't know what he'd do when the war ended and he had to go home without BJ, most likely never seeing him again. BJ, he knew, would return to his family. That would never change. He wouldn't have it any other way. If BJ were someone different, he wouldn't love him like he did. Besides, there was really no way they could live together, not openly anyway. It was one of the reasons why Hawkeye was such a notorious womanizer. The women were his beard.
BJ wasn't strictly gay. He was just lonely and in desperate need of companionship. He loved Hawkeye, but they wouldn't have been together had the circumstances been any different. Despite his transgressions, he remained devoted to his family, and most especially to his daughter.
Their movements grew faster, more hurried as they approached orgasm. Winchester, as he usually did, merely rolled over and put his pillow over his ear. Despite their differences, they were still comrades in arms. They depended on each other for sanity and survival. He would not betray their secret.
BJ sat up slightly, pulling Hawkeye as close to him as possible. They grasped each other tightly; the comfort they each offered was all they had. It wasn't something easily held onto, but they would be damned if they didn't at least try.
What Hawkeye feared most was that one of them would be killed. The other would be left to face the war and all its consequences alone. He would survive, but probably locked in a funny farm somewhere. BJ would soldier on, but he would be deeply affected by it. So deeply, it was possible he might never recover. He would pretend and do his best to not show it, but inside he would continue to suffer.
They came together, as they did most things in these dark days. When the waves of pleasure had ended, Hawkeye nestled against BJ, content. BJ wrapped his arms tightly about his lover and did not let go until close to morning, just before the sun rose. Hawkeye reluctantly slipped back into his own bunk. They locked eyes and held the stare until sleep finally claimed them. They would only get a few hours of sleep, but it was more than worth it. They needed each other more than they needed their dreams, which were usually not dreams, but hellish nightmares that closely reflected their daily life.
When the camp woke up, the two went about their day as usual; talking, joking, and fighting injustice when they could, which was not very often. Night returned, all too slowly. Once again, they found themselves in each other's arms, where they would remain until the day when they could finally go home. If that day were to ever arrive…
A/N: I had just watched this episode of M*A*S*H and had never written a M*A*S*H fic before, so I went with the inspiration. Please review.