Disclaimer: I do not own Kyou Kara Maou, I would however like to own Wolfram. SHAZZAM!
Summary: In which Gwendal has to baby-sit Wolfram. In which Wolfram is a spoiled brat. In which the bond between brothers is tested.
A Brother's Worst Nightmare
Gwendal vonVoltaire stalked down the empty corridor of Blood Pledge Castle to his room in an irritated rage, his hands already making the motions for knitting.
Yes, knitting. That's what he would do. That would help him relax. That would ease the frustrated tension off his shoulders from an abysmally nerve-wracking day.
And his task wasn't even half-way over yet.
Gwendal tried his best not to hyperventilate at the thought of spending the next six days or more doing the task that had been requested of him.
No, not requested. Enforced.
"Ne, Gwen-chan, you love your mama, right? You would do anything she asked of you?" Celi simpered at him across the dining table over dinner.
Gwendal eyed his mother warily, on the alert instantly. She had something up her sleeve; he knew it. Whatever it was, he was not going to enjoy it, however curiosity had gotten the better of him.
"What do you want me to do?" he inquired with a gusty sigh.
"Oh, Gwen-chan, you act as if I was scheming something!" Celi exclaimed in mock-betrayal as she pouted, "That my own son would think that of his mother-that wounds me so deeply!"
"Please dispense with the theatrics and get on with it," Gwendal stated, trying to look nonchalant as he sipped his wine and pricked up his ears in expectation.
"Honestly, Gwen-chan, it's not that terrible, as you're anticipating for it to be," Celi declared, "All I want you to do is baby-sit your little brother!"
Gwendal promptly choked and dropped the wine glass, which shattered on the floor.
"Ne, Gwen-chan," Celi said, watching in amazement as her son sputtered for air, hacking and pounding his fist on the table, "Did I something that surprised you?"
Finally regaining the use of his lungs, Gwendal drew in several large breaths before glancing in the direction of Wolfram.
His youngest brother was seated on three cushions set on top of his chair to reach the table, and was greedily devouring large mouthfuls of his chocolate cake, which were not going only into his mouth, but all over his face as well. Wolfram looked up long enough from his desert for his chocolate-smudged cheeks to morph into a devilish smirk at his older brother and to stick out his tongue cheekily.
Gwendal's eyebrow twitched as a throbbing vein found its way out onto his forehead.
"Not even if you threatened me with esoteric magic," Gwendal proclaimed avidly.
"Oh, that's not faaaaaaaaaair, Gwen-chan!" Celi wailed, whether distraught for real or not, Gwendal couldn't tell, "I haven't had a vacation in sooooooooooo long! It will only be for a couple of days!"
"You do realize you are asking me this when Conrart is not here, but off with that man," Gwendal pointed out shrewdly. "You know that the little br-"
Gwendal abruptly halted his chosen word to describe Wolfram under the disapproving eye of his mother.
"Ahem," he coughed, continuing from where he had left off, "You know he likes Conrart better and actually listens to him. Why couldn't you have waited to ask him instead? Why is it so important you go on vacation now?"
"Well, if you must know, Gwendal, I though it would be nice if you and Wolfram spent some time together," Celi stated, actually becoming serious for once, "I know the age difference between you and Wolf-chan is greater than his and Conrart's, but he's your brother as well, and it would be nice for the two of you to get to know each other better. Not to mention Mamma finally being able to party again!"
"What about your commitment to that man?" Gwendal asked, once more not able to bring himself to say Dan Hiri's name.
Celi seemed to withdraw into herself as her face took on a sad, wistful expression and she spoke softly, "We've already talked on this matter and he understands the consequences of marrying me."
Her eyes drifted towards Wolfram, which the day's activities had finally caught up with him and who had fallen asleep headfirst into the remnants of his chocolate cake. The small blond was snoring loudly as he drooled contentedly onto the tablecloth.
Celi laughed quietly, and getting up and walking over to her youngest child, picked him up and began rubbing the chocolate off his face and hair with a napkin.
"So, what do you say, Gwen-chan?" his mother asked again, holding his little brother out towards him and beaming.
Perhaps it was the way Celi had sounded before, so sorrowful and dispirited. Perhaps it was the way Wolfram had looked then, completely docile and innocent, looking like a doll clutched fast in his mother's arms. The light from the chandelier above shined down on his hair, transforming his blond locks into gold, making him seem like a slumbering angel.
Who in the Great Demon Kingdom could have said no at that moment?
Gwendal should have realized it was a bad omen when Wolfram's small chubby fist swung out and landed him a chocolate-covered right hook to the nose.
Well, it was too late now to turn back time and change the mindless "yes" that had come out of his mouth. Celi had been ecstatic and had wasted no time on preparing her yacht and hopping on the boat.
And Wolfram had wasted no time in proving he was definitely no angel.
However, Celi's initial reason for baby-sitting was being played out. Before lunchtime that day, Gwendal had learned three things about his youngest brother he hadn't known before.
One: He was an aggressive attention-seeker.
Two: He was not only a brat, but a severely spoiled one at that.
Three: He was a violent pyromaniac.
The first two weren't that surprising really, however Gwendal learned the third the hard way.
He had tried to go about his daily routine as normally and conventionally as possible. Wolfram, however, did not seem to understand the concept of the phrase, "Don't bother me. I'm busy."
"Aniue, I'm bored," was how it started out.
"Go amuse yourself," Gwendal said, not looking up from the paperwork he was doing.
"I'm bored, play with me," Wolfram insisted.
Gwendal paused writing momentarily to glance at his little brother he was standing in front of his desk, arms crossed and eyes narrowed, trying his best to look intimidating. A hopeless task really, as his head barely met the top of the desk.
"Play with me!" Wolfram repeated with a glare, stomping his small foot on the floor.
Gwendal could feel a vein trying to pop out on his head.
"Wolfram, don't bother me, right now. I'm busy," he replied before returning his attention back to his paperwork.
There was silence for the next several moments, in which Gwendal assumed Wolfram had wandered off elsewhere, until a huge crash sounded throughout the room.
Dreading what he would find, Gwendal lifted his eyes to see Wolfram standing in the midst of what used to be a figurine of a pig in a ballet suit.
The pig in the ballet suit, which was part of a rare collection of figurines called the Porcurinas.
The pig in the ballet suit, which was the only one of the collection in the whole of the Great Demon Kingdom.
The pig in the ballet suit, which he had forsaken the original name "Shamika" and had fondly renamed it "Biddy Betsy".
And now it had been broken.
Broken. By. The. Brat.
"Oops," Wolfram said, not looking repentant in the least. In fact, he looked a little smug.
Gwendal rose out of his chair slowly, with not one, but several angry-looking veins pulsing on his head.
"Very well, Wolfram," he stated, his voice far more calmer than he actually was. "You want to play a game?'
The brat's expression had changed from that of a smug one to one of hesitant-ness, as if wondering if his last act had been too much.
"We're going to play a game," Gwendal stated, "It's called tag, otherwise known as 'Don't-Let-The-Older-EXTREMELY-VEXED-Aniue-Catch-His-Younger-SEVERLY-LACKING-In-Discipline-Brother'!"
Wolfram had fled at that, running out of his brother's office door and down the hallways of the castle in a mad streak. Though Gwendal would have dearly loved to give chase to avenge poor, slain Biddy Betsy, he had retained enough reason to realize that though Wolfram may very well have been the devil incarnate, that spoiled brats will be spoiled brats, and that paperwork, if left alone, would multiply somehow.
Besides, he figured Wolfram's condescending antics were over for the day.
Lunchtime consisted of tying his little brother to his chair.
"Um, Lord vonVoltaire," a serving maid voiced out loud hesitantly, "Is that…really necessary?"
"Children need to eat, don't they? This one has tried to escape from his meal three times now. Therefore, I have tied him to the chair to ensure he gets his nourishment. I think it makes perfect sense," Gwendal stated seemingly untroubled his bizarre sense of logic.
The serving maid blinked a couple of times, shook her head and returned to the kitchens, unsure of how to counter-attack the previous argument.
"Now, you, brat," Gwendal addressed his younger brother, "Eat your food."
"NOOOOOOOOOO!" Wolfram howled, his face turning red with rage, as he strained his legs against the ropes, unable to reach the knots with his hands, "I HATE BRUSSEL SPROUTS! I WANT CAKE!"
"Listen, here, brat," Gwendal stated, relishing in his payback to his little brother for killing Biddy Betsy, "Mother may indulge you with whatever you want, but because of that, you have the mannerisms of a wild boar. You are a demon prince, and you will behave in a civilized custom."
Wolfram's response was to hurl a flaming fireball at his older brother's head.
Gwendal ducked and the fireball embedded itself in the wall behind him, leaving a gaping hole and black scorch mark in its wake.
With veins too numerous to count, springing out of his head, Gwendal turned to lecture the brat on controlling his anger.
And barely dodged the next volley of fireballs flung his way.
"HEAR ME ALL PARTICLES WHO DWELL IN FLAME, BURN MY MEAN, BULLYING ANIUE!" Wolfram screamed, summoning fireball after fireball out of the air.
Gwendal's blood pressure sky-rocketed in anger as he took shelter behind a suit of armor, his left eye going off into spasms of irritated twitches. He honestly did not understand how a child so young could have such a violent temper. Conrart had never been like this!
The suit of armor he was currently hiding behind was blasted out of the way, by a particular strong bombardment of fireballs, and he was left exposed. Leaping into action before Wolfram could summon the next barrage of his fire element at him, Gwendal flung himself across the length of room and grabbed the pitcher of water resting on the dining table.
"I think you should COOL OFF!" Gwendal cried as he dumped the pitcher's contents over his little brother's head.
Wolfram stared wide-eyed at him in shock, his mouth gaping open in astonishment, as rivulets of water dripped down his head.
The look of amazement on his younger brother's face was too comical for Gwendal not to laugh. And laugh he did, for he was certain that no one had dared before do anything that might offend the Demon Queen's youngest, precious son.
Gwendal was still laughing at his victory when a familiar voice reached through his maddened senses.
Gwendal halted his revelry to view Anissina making her way towards him. Normally, the sight of her would be sending shivers of fear down his spine, but his nerves were feeling numb at the moment, elated on finally landing one over his little brother.
"Gwendal, what happened here?" Anissina inquired, hands on her hips, "Why does the dining room look one of my inventions exploded in here, and why is Wolfram all wet?"
Geendal opened his mouth to explain, eager to share his triumph with someone else, however Wolfram beat him to it.
"WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!" his little brother wailed, bursting into tears on the spot, "Anissina, help me! Gwendal's mad and attacked me! Look, he tied me up!"
"What?" Anissina blinked, taking a good look at the chair Wolfram was occupying and noticing the ropes for the first time. Her eyes narrowed as she glared at her friend accusingly. "Gwendal, did you really tie him up and attack him? Your own brother! How could you!"
"It's not like that," Gwendal tried to explain, his sense of victory fleeing and irritation returning, "And he attacked me first!"
"Gwendal, he's younger than you!" Anissina exclaimed exasperatingly, as she whipped out a small invention she had named "I-Can-Slice-Through-Anything-Kun" and released Wolfram from his bonds. "You're supposed to be the role model! I can't believe you could be so immature."
"You're not even going to hear my side of the story!" Gwendal raged, "See? The little brat's turned you against me!"
"WAAAAAAH! Anissina! Don't leave me with Aniue! He's scary! WAAAAAAAAH!" Wolfram sobbed, clinging to the red-haired demon girl's apron.
"Don't worry, Wolf-chan," Anissina comforted the small boy, patting his head, "We're going to go away from scary Aniue now. Come on."
Gwendal watched the two walk away, hand in hand, veins springing out onto his head as Wolfram turned around long enough to stick out his tongue at him behind Anissina's back.
Anyway, that's how Gwendal's day had gone. In less than four hours after Celi had left, it had been chaotic after chaotic event that had followed, and Gwendal nearly cried at the thought of spending a week with the same schedule as today.
Wearily, he opened the door to his room, half-expecting it to be in ruins by Wolfram and his pyromaniac quirks. He breathed a sigh of relief finding it perfectly in shape and staggering towards the bed, he flopped headfirst into his pillow and fell asleep instantly.
When Gwendal woke up the sun was setting and he felt surprisingly refreshed. In fact, he felt a little guilty of how he had treated Wolfram all day. Part of the child's antics had been his fault. His little brother only had wanted to play with him and when he did not comply, Wolfram had made sure to hold his attention on him one way or the other.
Gwendal realized it must terribly lonely for Wolfram in the castle. There weren't many children and the only beings remotely the same age as him were himself and Conrart, and Conrart more so. However that would not last forever. Already, his second brother's half-human genes were showing as his aging process sped up. Soon, he would look closer to Gwendal's age than Wolfram's.
Gwendal decided to make use of the little time remaining of the day to apologize and spend some family time with Wolfram.
The demon prince wandered over the castle searching for his little brother, but he was nowhere to be found. Right as Gwendal was about to give up, thinking the child was off sulking somewhere, he spotted him outside a window in Celi's garden.
Gwendal hurried outside, hoping that Wolfram hadn't gone somewhere else before he got there. The boy couldn't sit still for ten seconds. However, his little brother was still in the same spot as he had first seen him.
"Wolfram," Gwendal said, coming up behind him, "We need to talk about earlier today. I'm sor-"
"I'm not Wolfram," his brother said, turning around and smiling widely at him.
Gwendal's eyebrow twitched. Here he was about to confess and repent of all his shortcomings and already Wolfram was making things difficult.
"Don't be ridiculous. Of course you're Wolfram," Gwendal said, trying to keep a firm grasp on the feelings of sympathy for his little brother that he had awoken with.
"No, he's not Wolfram! I'm Wolfram!" came a new voice to his left and Gwendal turned his head to get the shock of his life as he saw another Wolfram standing there.
"I'm the real Wolfram," the Wolfram on his left stated, "He's my twin."
"You don't have a twin," Gwendal croaked out in disbelief, but then again, with Celi as someone's mother, you never knew.
"You're right, we're not twins," the Wolfram on his left said and Gwendal breathed a sigh of relief, "We're triplets!"
"Aniue!" came a new voice on his right and Gwendal gaped as he now was affronted with three Wolframs.
"Play with us!"
"Give us cake!"
"Watch what we can do when our fire power is combined!"
As if that was not enough, the speechless Gwendal could only watch in stupefied alarm as more Wolframs appeared around the corner of the garden and ran towards him in a large noisy energetic crowd.
"Aniue, watch this!"
"Aniue, look at me!"
"Aniue, pay me some attention!"
Gwendal was bowled over legion of Wolframs and nearly crushed by their weight. Struggling to free himself from the clinging, grasping, pulling hands, he swiveled his head around wildly and spotted a sheepish-looking Anissina.
"YOU!" he roared, knowing she was behind this somehow, "WHAT DID YOU DO?"
"Hahahah! It's the funniest thing," Anissina laughed, "But somehow, Wolfram found my 'You-Can-Clone-Yourself-Kun' and used it on himself. Hahahahahahahaha!"
"WELL, CAN'T YOU DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS?" Gwendal cried as his hair was yanked, clothes tugged on, and ears deafened by hundreds of the Wolfram's voices.
"Sorry, Gwendal," Anissina said, "But I'm afraid 'You-Can-Clone-Yourself-Kun' has been broken beyond repair and there is no way to reverse this. But look on the bright side: now, you'll have more little brothers to love! HAHAHAHAHA!"
"No," Gwendal stated panic-stricken as he went down under the mass bodies of Wolframs, each trying to hug him, "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"
Gwendal shot upwards with a horrified gasp and took in his surroundings wildly. It was dark, with the moon shining through his window, and he was lying in his bed. Gwendal relaxed in a dead slump, when he realized it had all been a dream.
No, not a dream. A terrible nightmare.
A nightmare that could very well become a reality someday. Gwendal made a memo to himself to thoroughly search through Anissina's Experiments of DOOM the next day to make sure no 'You-Can-Clone-Yourself-Kun' actually existed. He would make certain Anissina wasn't around when searched though. No need to give her any ideas.
Gwendal looked up when he heard his door creak open and was greeted with the sight of his little brother poking his head around it.
"Aniue?" came the inquiry and Gwendal got the impression that perhaps he wasn't the only person feeling guilty about how the day had gone.
"Come here, brat," Gwendal said with a sigh, and pulled back the covers on his bed.
Wolfram hurried across the room, and Gwendal could not help feeling relieved that no horde of Wolframs came following behind.
His little brother crawled onto the bed and lay down next to him.
"I'm sorry for breaking Biddy Betsy and throwing fireballs at you," Wolfram stated in a genuine lamentable voice.
"Well, I'm sorry for not spending any time with you today," Gwendal said. "Would you like to go horse-back riding with me tomorrow?"
"You won't be too busy?" Wolfram asked, skeptical to believe what was being offered.
Gwendal winced, "No. I promise. It will be just you and me tomorrow. Whatever you want to do."
"Mmm, 'kay," Wolfram murmured, eyelids drooping heavily, "Then I want…to see you use…your Intense Silence and Grumpy Glare on your soldiers."
Gwendal felt his the corner of his mouth twitching upwards, as he attempted to ward the incoming smile away. Yet he couldn't help the warm feeling that spread across his chest. He had no idea his little brother watched him that closely. It was…nice.
"How about my Mysteriously Scary-Fear Me Now presence?" Gwendal questioned, "Would you like to see me use that on them too?"
"Mmm-hmmm," Wolfram nodded, on the verge of sleep. "Then I want…to see Anissina's lab-"
"No," Gwendal stated firmly.
"But you said…anything I wanted-"
"I lied. No."
"Meanie," Wolfram managed to mumble before drifting into sleep.
Then, only then, did Gwendal allow himself to smile safely in the dark, where no one could see him.
A/N: Hope you enjoyed this. I don't know. I was going for random, pointless humor and it turned into fluff, haha! That happens sometimes. Sorry, Conrad's not really in it, I tried, but the story had already taken off and he didn't really fit. And sorry if I got any facts wrong about Celi, Dan Hiri, the brothers' ages, etc. I only watch the anime and read fanfiction and that's where I got my facts. So, anyway, I enjoyed writing this and I hope you enjoyed reading this. Please tell me your favorite parts! Thanks!