A/N: Translations at the end. Request fill at the hetkink meme, which I finally decided to post up in my own fan fiction account. Thank you and please enjoy.
Sweet Nothings by marrmarr
Their breaths evened out.
The ceiling is so, so white. Russia really only starts talking when he moves to dim the lights - but they really should have done it even before they started. The older nation murmurs something above his ear, and nudges his nose against the curve of the shell; a hand was behind America's head and his body was sprawled half on the blond - he knew the younger nation doesn't mind the weight. Then he moves again, and his lips draw closer to his ear,
All America could do was chew the inside of his cheek in idleness. The haze of the afterglow dimmed his sensibilities, so the words came off as gibberish to him - but he could still catch half of what Russia murmurs next.
There it is. What is that?
What is -
The places where Russia's body was pressed against America's - they were warm. Where they did not touch, they were a few degrees cooler. America reaches out for the comforter, a foot away, promptly covering the both of them before Russia's skin would make him shiver if he shifted.
Russia rumbled a quiet thank you, roughened by exhaustion. It had been a long day - they didn't talk much when they proceeded to the room earlier, and it has been quite a while, he hasn't seen America much lately since they were so busy these days; a very trying matter...
"You say thank you just fine, but what the hell do you mumble about every single time, in that Russian of yours?" America asks suddenly, almost too fast, jerking Russia out from his quiet lull even when America struggled to keep his voice low. His voice fostered no malice, simply curiosity and a tinge of something Russia couldn't quite place. He filed it as exhaustion as well. "Hey, answer the question and don't fall asleep. You do that every time I ask."
"Whatever you think of them to be is what they are," he responded, and the air from his mouth curled around America's neck.
There was quite a long pause. Russia sounds as if he is about to go to sleep again, but he really is waiting for America's words. He has perfected the art of faking his sleep - so he knows America thinks he is dead to the world.
And since he has perfected it, he has his eyes close shut, and since he cannot see, he doesn't notice the way America's baby blues were a bit too bright, for a moment when his fingers twitched slightly.
What is -
America laughs lightly, shaking his head as he shifted, and Russia's previously untouched skin was cold against America's. He doesn't register this.
"I said don't fall asleep, jerk. Well, if I'm gonna guess - like what I already know - you're, calling me something that'll probably make me punch you in the face tomorrow morning - not right now though, since I'm too lazy to move," he guessed, and there was probably a dismissing laugh in between those words. "But I just wanna know what you're mumbling about, exactly. Uh. I promise I won't get mad no matter what it is?"
Russia couldn't help it - his lips brushed against America's hair when he smiled.
"Very good deduction, Alfred." He sighed, serene smile ever present. "You are, of course, right."
"So you're really are calling me a dirty whore or something worse every time."
It wasn't a question - no matter, because Russia felt no need to correct him.
"I am a bit more creative than that, rest assured." He sighed, shifting closer and tucking Alfred's head under his chin. "Sleep, solnyshko."
America grunted. He'll probably never remember the term because Russia's pronunciation of his own words was hard to grasp, even in English phonetics - maybe in Cyrillic, yes, but he doesn't know the letters at all.
And it wasn't as if he could ask around about it either. Soln - sol -
Forget it. Why should I care?
The very first time, it wasn't that white - the decor had a good part of the ceiling covered in paintings, and America wasn't on his back on the bed.
Russia had a hand in his golden hair, pulling his head back as he trailed his teeth down America's neck, starting from his ear and all the way down with his tongue pressing in places America could've never imagined to make him so hard so fast.
Well, it wasn't as if they haven't fucked before.
"Please baby oh fuck yes mmnyeah -" Their mouths met, in sync, America sucked hard on Russia's tongue that made the taller nation growl a wild sound at the back of his throat and surge forward, pressing America hard onto the edge of the bathroom counter. "'ckin' hurts, asshole -"
Russia's idea to shut him up by kissing the lights out of him was a fucking great idea - America split away from him with a gasp and a trail of spit between them. Immediately after that, Russia wasted no time in running familiar paths down America's chest, mapping out the contours and the edges he came to know so well in the years of their, ah, agreement.
" - too good at this - too good at this - don't stop don'tstop -"
Russia made that movement with his hips that made America want to come like a fucking teen. His fingers dug onto Russia's side, and if the guy wasn't about to get on with the fucking program, America was going to just jerk himself off at this point he's going crazy can't think can't think can't fuckfuckfuck want want want
Then Russia stops. America is almost horrified: he makes a keening sound at the back of his throat and presses both of them closer, confused and frustrated, and the dark tone of his voice displays this.
Russia smiles a secret smile, and presses their foreheads together, bringing America to look into those cryptic, violet violent eyes. America mistakes the slight darkening as a sign of malovence, so he stills, but the heat between them keeps his mind from registering more than anything else.
America might have heard it once, but then through the haze - the rest comes up as gibberish to him.
"Если бы ты только мог понять."
"What the fuck are you talking about?" America asks, dropping his head onto Russia's shoulder. He wanted to whine - all right, fuck, he was already whining. "If you want to stop, you can tell me in freakin' Englismmmm - oh, hell, are you talking dirty in Russian?"
The response was wet muscle on his chest and those hands on his dick. America quickly forgot about being angry.
The time after that, and after that, it wasn't as obvious. He only notices after the third time. Russia was pounding into him, almost fully clothed, while his own pajama bottoms were still on his ankles and he was trying to not get his face all over the wall opposite him, gloved hands pressed onto each hip. It was a morning in the summer - America doesn't exactly remember whether it was a June or a July - but Russia was trying to get dressed, America, what are you doing with that hand of yours..?
"'s'pposed t'be a quickie," America grunted, rolling his head back and gasping when he saw stars. "Gonna be late, fuck."
"Do not worry, дорогой, I'll be sure to blame it all on you trying to pick a fight with me," Russia murmured, a tinge of amusement in his voice and America was maybe a little bit proud at how he could get that usually calm and serene voice to sound raw, throaty, and generally implying 'I want to fuck you like an animal'.
"Dorowhat? This gonna be a permanent kink of yours, from now on?" America asked, and his husky voice made it sound as if he was demanding an answer. Russia knows better.
He presses a wet, sloppy kiss at the back of America's neck and bites down lightly. Then he grabs America's dick in his hands - where'd the glove go? - and starts pumping, pushing the last of America's control off the cliff.
He came with a hoarse cry. Russia comes right after almost quietly (like he always does), a soft sigh and the tightening of the other hand the only early indication. When he pulled out a few minutes later, he kissed the top of America's ear firmly - it was an odd habit America had gotten used to ever since the start.
Then he murmured some more Russian, this time too quiet for him to hear, before he made his way to the bathroom to clean off the mess on his right hand.
I guess that answers my question.
It went on.
He tried so hard to keep it from bothering him, and he really wouldn't mind Russia calling him dirty names while having sex (God knows how much I love calling him a fucking asshole each time), but there were moments, like when all six foot and a half of Russian was pressed onto his side while they talked about stupid, idle things; unimportant things, things about their lives and other people's and their bosses, their children and the six o'clock French soap opera playing in the television set of America's hotel room -
Or when Russia pulls the comforter over both of them and tells him to go to sleep after pressing a sort-of goodnight kiss on his ear -
Or when they just talk, without the sex -
Or when he holds on to him like he won't let go -
It was different for him because, at least Russia understands what America calls him and he never means them (like yesterday when he called him a bastard) but when Russia starts talking in words he can't even pronounce right - he feels stupid for not understanding, he doesn't know why, even if Russia keeps on telling him that he shouldn't worry, just meaningless babble in the heat of sex, the things you wouldn't be interested in, Alfred, now go to sleep, da?
Because are they really insults? When you think I'm asleep, you start saying those things again.
Worse yet; if they are what you want me to think they are
Do you mean them?
He wouldn't have pinned himself for being a sucker in these kinds of things, but Russia made him - well, what exactly?
Makes me laugh, America thought moodily, gaze fixed at the way his coffee swirled. He adjusted his glasses before mechanically picking up the newspaper beside him and opening it without real thought. Makes me feel like I'm not a kid, listens to me even when I'm being stupid. Makes me
"Good morning," Russia greeted pleasantly, lips curved customarily (like it always will) and improving relations between Moscow and Washington D.C. allows the both of them to sit together on the same table without anyone sparing a second thought to it. America grins back.
And the feeling in his chest tightens.
Makes me feel wanted.
"You look bothered," Russia observed, able to look beyond what's in front of him to see what's really there. He looked as if he wanted to say more than that, but a strange expression crossed his face, and then there was no more. America wondered silently when he began to notice the little things, but didn't dwell for long since it's been too far back to actually remember when.
He shook his head, getting into the conversation before his mind indulged in senseless wandering.
"What gave it away?" he asked humourously, expecting their usual banter.
"You haven't touched your food yet, or your coffee. It's quite unsettling for our America to act this way, that would be what others would think, net?" Russia asked, his voice carrying the same, amused tone, but with an undercurrent of -
(There was a slight hesitation, but it was hidden well. America doesn't notice.)
America's hands stilled. Usually, the younger nation's smiles were quick and smooth, almost superficial in how generous he was with them, but with enough honesty to be considered real. This time around, looking at Russia looking at him like that, the smile came slow, soft, tilted differently - with more light in his eyes.
Then he looked away hastily, completely missing Russia's reaction; but the smile on his face was too difficult to get rid of. He turned his attention back to the newspaper - there was something about a plane and France, bankruptcy and motors, an earthquake and a storm; but everything came up as jumbled letters which don't make sense, just as Cyrillic letters don't make sense to me...
"It's nothing big - you know me, I'll probably figure it out in the end."
"I know. To be of assistance is still a nice thought to dwell on."
His cheeks warmed. Russia laughed, not unkindly, leaning back onto his seat while letting his chin rest on his hand and America knew, that under the table, he would be crossing his ankles. The nation's gaze was fixed on something beyond the windows of the dining hall, eyes the shade of rich violet. His cream-coloured hair fell softly against his face - Russia brushed the strands away absently and that was as far as America's thoughts carried him before he willed them away.
He was an avid dreamer, but even that seemed too unimaginable.
It has been a week since America saw a sign of white-gold hair - especially the one belonging to him. He supposed that the break was a welcome in its own right, even if he hasn't spoken to Russia since they shook hands and gave an unassuming hug in parting. Usually it only bothered him if they were apart for a few months, but it left a dull ache in his heart, these days.
He decided to take a walk today through a nameless street, seeing faceless people passing by and grinning at each other, some old timers enjoying their last years and a few boisterous teenagers laughing loudly.
He wasn't fond of looking at the couples. It lead him to paint a picture of Russia with the same kind of expression the lovebirds had when looking at each other, and it drove him to think that Russia always looks at me like that too, and he knew it was just his mind playing tricks.
Ugh, what a jerk, America thought, rubbing his temples in frustration. Can't you just leave my thoughts for one hour, Ivan?
"You look sad, gospodin - I mean, mister."
The timid voice startled America out of his inner musing, and he looked to find a short, blonde teenaged girl staring up at him with a concern look on her face. America grinned, almost on autopilot.
"It's nothing. I'm just thinking, sweetheart." A strange look crossed the her features, and America blinked when he realized how creepy that sounded. He placed his hands up in defence. "I didn't mean anything, I'm just used to calling kids like that." If possible, she took up an affronted look without visibly frowning.
"With all due respect, sir, you don't look all that older than I am."
"You might be surprised," America said cryptically, and grinned. He looked around before sighing. "Right."
"Are you lost?"
"Not really. I'm just not where I'm supposed to be right now." He ran a hand through his hair, and looked at the box the girl was holding, filled with books. "Are you throwing those away?"
"These are Russian phrasebooks and notes. My boyfriend doesn't need them anymore," she replied, and she seems pretty happy, America thought distantly, Ivan, comes up in his head before he could stop himself. "He picked up Russian two months ago, at least bits and pieces."
You're haunting me everywhere.
America made an 'o' with his mouth. "You're Russian? I'm sorry; I mean, your English is amazing."
"Yes, and thank you. Sometimes I start to talk to him using my mother tongue, because I'm embarrassed to let him know how I feel about him." Her cheeks coloured, but she smiled with genuine delight. "Every time I do that, he gives me strange looks, da? But he went to find out what I was really saying. I felt like dying when he repeated what I said, in English. Now, I'm glad he understands, even if he does like to tease me about it."
"That's cute," America said, and he meant it. The girl shrugged. "Do you like calling him anything in particular, if you don't mind me asking?"
She giggled. The small talk was relaxing - it was nice to have a chat with someone who wasn't a nation once in a while, or someone whose life didn't revolve around politics, or someone who he had to keep up appearances with...
"Oh, there is a lot. Dorogoy, most of the time. I love calling him solnyshko, though, because he gets this affronted look on his face like a cat."
His heart stopped.
"He says that 'sunshine' makes him sound like a girl," she elaborated, with her voice oozing with affection. She looked up to America to say more, before stopping. "Are... Are you all right, sir?"
... than that, rest assured. Sleep, solnyshko.
He looked down hastily, and the feeling in his chest from before comes back with a vengeance, squeezing his heart until he felt like he couldn't breathe.
"Are you sure? Do you need to sit down, or -"
"I just remembered something, I-I need to go."
"I see -"
"But, ah... Your books - you don't need them, right? I was wondering if, since you aren't using them; there's a friend. He's... He's Russian, too."
Make or break. I need to know.
Do you mean them?
When he looked back, the girl's eyes were warm, in a semblance of understanding - as if she knew.
"Take it, please."
She had a soft, small smile as she handed the box to him, and America was struck at how meaningful it was, and, Ivan, your children are beautiful, just like - just like you.
"Do you want me to pay for it -" He paused at the way she shook her head furiously. "I can't... I... Thank you."
He couldn't be more honest, even if he tried.
"It was nice meeting you, ah... Your name?"
"You can call me Natasha. It was nice meeting you too, Mr. ...?"
"Alfred Jones. But everyone knows me better as the United States of America," he whispered at the end, with a wistful sort of smile, and Natasha's eyes widened considerably -
Before she could say anything, though, he was gone - with only the memory of his bright grin, the scent of roses and the absence of her books the only sign of his previous presence.
The light blinded his eyes momentarily when he stepped out of the dark vehicle.
"Privyet, Alfred," Russia greeted, and America blinked at how quickly Russia gathered him up in his arms, and he - he couldn't help but lean into the strength in them. His hands twitched and he wrapped his own arms around Russia's body, feeling the cold air from his air-conditioned car seeping into Russia's coat.
Make or break.
"Hey yourself," America said, heart aching when they pulled away. "What's up?"
Never told me it'll feel like this. He wanted to ask so badly, since when?
Do you mean them
"I was beginning to think you were not coming," Russia confided, tugging on a piece of America's golden hair discreetly, as if he was chiding the other nation, before he turned on his heel and started walking. "Shall we?"
"I'm the last one to get here?"
"Of course, or else they wouldn't have sent me to wait for you. The rest are enjoying their fine wines and rare tea blends."
"Sorry about that," America said, catching up to Russia's long, wide strides. "For having to play escort."
"I don't mind, Alfred." He slowed his steps, and they were the only ones in the hallway at that moment. Russia knew this; he stole a quick, brief kiss, but it stirred something deep in both of them, not only because of their feelings for each other, but because it really has been a while. And it was enough.
America's heart fluttered. "If you insist."
Today, it wasn't on the bed, or even the bathroom - he about to be fucked against the wall, against the door - they barely got it to close in the first place, and the doorknob dug painfully on his side. America hit Russia hard on the arm.
"Move, you jerkwad -" Russia shifted, pulling him away, onto the other wall and shoving his leg in between America's thighs. His dick wanted to scream and he wanted to die from the delicious agony. It wasn't enough. He slid against Russia's hips and started whining when Russia didn't move fast enough. "I said move, bastard - a month - way too lonmmhnnn."
Russia chuckled when he pulled away a long minute later, shaking his head. "Ty prekrasniy."
America's eyes snapped open, cheeks flushed. Russia doesn't notice - too busy sucking on America's neck and attempting to drive the younger nation crazy. America didn't get to dwell on his thoughts for long because Russia really was damn good at this, so he was swept away before he could ask anything more.
They went at least two rounds before Russia stopped, long enough for them to take a break. Still, America was satiated, though he knew he wouldn't be the next morning. He couldn't help the way he just wanted more, and more, and more...
"Missed you," America mumbled sleepily, and Russia paused. Then he continued with the idle touching, ones that were meant to map out his body for another millionth time.
Russia's lips pressed against his temple, and then he whispered.
"Ya lyublyu tebya."
It was like a douse of both scalding hot and icy cold water. America jerked away from the touches, with a tone of almost disbelief in his voice. The words tumbled out of him before he could stop himself.
"You - you love me?" America blurted, and immediately, everything stopped.
Russia froze. He froze, unable to breathe, heart stopping - but his hands still shook. His eyes were wide, wild, saturated with panic and disbelief and cold fear all rolled into one.
"You love me, you - you, you said it... Didn't... Didn't you?"
America's breathing started to slow, and there was a sinking feeling that made his stomach churn uncomfortably. No, he thought, breath stuttering. This isn't how it's supposed to go.
Russia choked on his next words, having trouble alternating from Russian to English and back.
"- ne ponimayu - I have no idea what you're talking about," he whispered, voice breaking painfully.
America's voice did the same. In another time out there, somewhere, he would've been amused at how much they mirrored each other in their little actions; the meaningless gestures. Today he simply dropped down his head onto Russia's chest and tightened his hands on the other nation's shoulders.
"You're lying. You, I - don't lie anymore, Ivan."
There was a long, unbearable pause. Russia took a while to gather the words in his mouth, but when he spoke, his tone was almost as if it treaded softly on broken glass.
"Know this, Alfred. I never lied to you, not once."
Ivan retreated slightly, and looked at Alfred, as if waiting for an answer. His eyes were filled with a kind of hope that broke children's hearts in the end, when they were only left to pick up the pieces of their unfulfilled dreams.
Never lied to me
So ever since
Ever since the beginning
"Christ, we're fucked. I - I don't know what to say. I mean, we've been doing this for a while, I - and, this whole thing - I feel stupid for not figuring it out sooner... Fuck." America laughed shakily, running a hand through his hair. He repeated. "I don't know what to say."
America slowly relaxed, leaning in slightly, while Russia's shoulders were forever tense.
It trailed off into an awkward silence.
America looked up at the soft tone, but Ivan wouldn't meet his eyes.
"Ya ponimayu." Russia hesitated at the language that left his mouth, but then pressed both of his lips tightly and close his eyes, sighing in frustration. He pulled away. "Prosti menya."
His mind was too confused to translate that.
"Where are you -"
"I understand, America. I'll... I'll be taking my leave. Please forgive me if it all made you feel uncomfortable."
"What are you - Ivan, Ivan why the fuck are you leaving? Wait - "
And with that one word, he stilled, even if he was unable to understand why, you said you love me didn't you why are you stepping out of the room without a backwards glance don't leave me, Ivan, why are you doing this?
But his throat seemed like it was filled with lead. It was a situation he always thought unimaginable - to have America unable to speak out, it scared him so much that he looked down, looked away.
He stayed that way all through the time until when Ivan left, all wistful smiles and with a parting goodbye.
You said you never lied.
The next morning, he came up with some half-baked excuse about his red, puffy eyes - something about shampoo getting into them, something or other...
Do you mean them.
He didn't dare to let Ivan see. He didn't even look at his way the whole day.
"Good morning, America."
The only sign that he felt a stab on his heart was the way he frowned for a split second - before covering it up with his superficial grin.
"... Good morning, Russia."
Good nations always found a way to weather the storm, but in this case, America felt like he just wanted to float aimlessly in the clouds and never come back. Still, he was a good nation, so he was quick to shove his feelings to the back of his mind to focus on what he needed to do. It worked, most of the time - but it failed miserably when he had nothing to finish, and was left with a lot of time to think.
The days passed. He knew his eyes were bloodshot and sunken in and generally he looked horrible, from what he saw every time he went in front of the mirror to shave. It really was that bad, since even his boss demanded him to take a long vacation - he deserved it.
Problem was, he didn't want a vacation.
He wanted Ivan. He was already past the point of caring - he knew what he wanted and he wasn't going to deny it any longer.
And he also wanted to know why did you -
That night kept replaying in his head over and over. It wasn't as if he did anything wrong, and neither did Ivan - Alfred said something about not knowing what to say, and that's when it all went downhill.
Christ, we're fucked. I - I don't know what to say.
I mean, we've been doing this for a while, I - and, this whole thing -
I feel stupid for not figuring it out sooner... Fuck.
America laughed shakily, running a hand through his hair. He repeated.
"I don't know what to say."
The realisation hit him one day like a ton of bricks, and he couldn't believe it eluded him for as long as it had.
- He retreated slightly, and looked at Alfred, as if waiting for an answer.
He was waiting for me to say it, too.
America laughed humourlessly. He wanted to throw himself off a cliff - something.
I'm such a fucking idiot.
He wasn't even kidding when he said that he really tried.
But Russia was dead set on keeping their meetings brief, to the point with no lingering whatsoever. America was starting to snap from the stupidity of it all - he was frustrated, and everyone kept on bugging him about it, and he really wanted everything to be over with, but would Russia stop being so - so - I don't even know.
He wanted to say sorry, he wanted to say that he was an idiot, he wanted to say a lot of things, and maybe, he wanted to say - he wanted to say -
America growled, getting up from his armchair and pacing the steps all the way from his discussion room to the front door. A few weeks. Weeks. Every time he came to confront the nation, it was as if he was shot down before he even got the ball rolling.
"R-Russia, I -"
"Forgive me, there are some pressing matters to attend to at the moment."
"Russia, we have to -"
"Go bother someone else, America."
"Ivan. You can't just -"
"Fucking listento me!" he screamed, breathing heavily.
Russia closed his eyes momentarily at America's outburst. Then he smiled.
"But that's the thing, America. There's... Nothing else to say."
Even so, he knew Russia was hurting even more than he was. His smiles were heartbreaking. The thought chilled his insides every time.
He grabbed his coat, scribbled a quick memo about 'setting things straight', and then opened the door as wide as it could be, almost undoing it from its hinges because of his sheer strength.
Soon, the day had him trudging through the streets in the summer of Moscow. The heat wasn't really helping with how he felt, horrible and more agitated the longer he was on the sidewalk. He just wanted to come up to Russia and give him a hug, and make him listen - or punch him in the face, and make him listen. He wasn't sure which one.
But his heart sped up as he saw Russia's house, and even as he felt the screaming urge to turn around and run, he steeled himself; shut his eyes and breathed. The rush of oxygen calmed his nerves a bit as he completed the last steps up to Russia's front door.
The Welcome sign was a bit faded, not really used, but it brought a small smile to America's face. He was just about to ring the doorbell, when the door swung open suddenly, bringing America face to face with none other than Russia.
His eyes were bloodshot, and he smelled like fucking alcohol; the light blond hair was limp, those violet eyes were dull and he looked as if he wanted to vomit at any given moment.
He looked like shit.
"You, Ivan Braginski, are an idiot," was the first thing that left America's mouth - his eyes widened, he didn't even think about it - and the first thing that Russia did in response to this was to shut the door in his face. "Shit - I mean - fuck. Ivan, open it."
There was a shuffle behind the door.
"Ivan, don't - don't do this."
America waited almost ten minutes before he heard Russia's muffled voice. He had to strain his hearing just to pick up the words, but even then, only pieces of his sentence.
"- go away - still there, aren't you -"
He wanted to pull out his hair in frustration. He slammed his two fists down on the wood, dragging them down, and the loud sound disturbed some of the birds resting in the tree nearest to them.
"Open the fucking door -"
"What do you want," Russia asked weakly, rubbing the spot between his eyebrows, near the bridge of his nose but not quite on the forehead. He opened the door a bit wider, but not enough for America to step through. Then he sighed. "I'm not feeling well, America."
Concern warred with anger. "I - you - I can't believe - " America furrowed his eyebrows. "Let me in."
"You're sick, and you reek of vodka, and you probably haven't let anyone clean up your house now let me in," America demanded, making sure to jam his foot on the doorway in case Russia decided to be an asshole about it and slam the door in his face again.
"I'm not leaving, damn you, I've been fucking confused and you won't talk to me and it fucking hurts and I just want to sort things out and get it over with so let me the fuck in or so help you I will break this door down!"
Russia squeezed his eyes shut, and threw up his hands in frustration. "Fine," he snapped, already at the end of his wits. Satisfied, America stepped through but frowned at the state of Russia's things - some of them were all over the floor, there was a stray shirt there and a bottle here, not to mention the curtains were drawn shut and it was dark. Russia made his way through the mess, picking up some of his clothes along the way; he was dressed in a simple long sleeved shirt and sweatpants, both the color of dull grey. He ignored most of the garbage strewn around - after picking up his clothes and placing them in the laundry basket, he finally opened his mouth. "Now what do you want, America?"
"To see you."
"And now you have." That was where he wanted to cut it off, but he couldn't help the words tumbling out. "I have been so good, lately, but yet you refuse to let the matter rest. You have figured out what I meant and you have given me your answer and yet you still come." America was reminded again of how thick Russia's accent was when he was upset. "I understand, ya ponimayu. I left you alone. Vhy do you continue to haunt me?"
America was bewildered. "You thought I gave you an answer?"
"Da, and it vas very clear, don't you think so?" Russia asked, laughing without humour, and he picked up an unfinished bottle as he did so. He poured it shakily inside a glass and then brought it up to his lips.
"The hell it was! Ivan - fuck, no, Ivan, stop that, you're going to get sick -" America snatched up the glass hastily, and the liquid spilled onto his shirt. He didn't care. "You're an idiot. Seriously. Okay?"
"Yes, I have been told that a few times," Russia said bitterly. He couldn't keep his gaze trained on America's face, let alone his eyes, so he dropped it. "And you've spilled fine vodka on your shirt."
"Christ, look at me. And I don't care. Fuck this shit, listen to me so I can start telling you how much of an idiot I've been."
Russia paused, and blinked slowly. America took it as a sign to continue.
"I just thought you knew," he started, then shook his head. "I mean, that night, when you said you loved me." Love, Russia corrected with a whisper, fingers twitching but America didn't notice. "I didn't know what to say; I really didn't - but I didn't realize you were waiting for me to spell it out for you. I just thought that you knew that I felt the same way about you too."
America placed down the glass on the table.
"I'm sorry, okay? And I -"
Russia looked even more upset if that was even possible, and he looked at America with such hurt in his eyes America simply stopped halfway, losing the words the vowed to tell Russia ever since he stepped through that door.
"You're only saying that to make me feel better."
America made a frustrated noise at the back of his throat, and almost slammed his fist onto the wall nearest to him.
"Why won't you -"
"What am I supposed to think? How could anyone love me? In all my life, I have been - betrayed, or rejected, or abandoned, and it is so hard to - was it because I am really that undesirable?" Russia asked desperately, holding his head in his hands as he crouched down, not having the strength to stand.
America looked stricken. "Ivan..."
"Is the thought of being with me, to be cared by me truly such a horrifying thing to even fathom?'"
"No, it's not," America retorted fiercely, but Russia wasn't listening.
"Toris, Raivis, all of them. Of course there is Natalia. But I only love her as a sister." Russia took a deep breath, running a hand through his hair with a shaky hand. "And then there was you - I tried, so hard to not adore you as much as I do now - to make you something more than what we just were. Because like everyone else, you would just - you would just leave me in the end - if you knew... If you knew how I felt."
America dropped down beside Russia and threaded his arms around him, holding on tight.
"Well guess what, Ivan," America whispered, and then sighed when Russia tensed. "I'm not just everyone."
"I know that," Russia replied quietly.
"Then get this through your thick skull: if I didn't give a damn, I wouldn't be here right now, telling you how stupid all of this is, and how it hurts when you push me away, especially when I know you're hurting too. When I look at you I can't breathe. When I look at you, it's like the world's only the both of us. When I look at you I feel like I'm really wanted."
Russia looked up, surprise evident in his eyes.
"I find it crazy cute when you get all cheerful when spring comes by, or when you take off my glasses and put them on the nightstand before we have sex." America shook his head, pressing his lips against Russia's hair. "Your smiles are all fucking heartbreakers, asshole... And you're not ugly. You're not even pretty, or handsome." His hold on Russia's still form tightened. "You're fucking beautiful."
Time passed, but America's hold on never loosened, nor did Russia try to pull away. It seemed like an eternity, and throughout the whole time, America held his breath.
"You do have a way with words," Russia said almost carefully, amusement and with no small amount of happiness hesitantly seeping in, and America chuckled, dropping his head down because he knew his cheeks were pink.
"I'm bad at this - and it's not like I had much practice." America reached up; kissed Russia's temple firmly. His voice never wavered, and his smile was so sincere; Russia felt like he held the sun in his hands.
"It's not everyday when I realize I've fallen in love."
It was like a repeat of the morning they had together two months ago, only that when he was near the superpower, Russia leaned down, tucked a stray blond lock behind America's ear and kissed the top.
"Dobroe utro, lyubimiy."
"G-Good morning to you too," America said, taken aback, before he regained his bearings and grinned exasperatedly. "Do we really have to go with the whole 'embarrass Alfred by treating him like a chick'?"
Even so, he felt happier than he ever had in ages.
"Indulge me, dorogoy, I've been waiting far too long for these moments."
"You're a sadist, man." America rolled his eyes, making sure Russia saw it. This earned him a cuff on the back of his head. "Fuck you, too."
"Stop giving me ideas, da? Now why haven't you eaten yet?" Russia asked pointedly, settling in the seat opposite America. Generally both of them were early risers, so the banquet hall was empty, with the occasional hotel staff fussing over the buffet table.
"Just because I haven't eaten yet doesn't mean it's the end of the world," he said sarcastically, and Russia raised an elegant eyebrow. "... Fine, you made your point. 'was waiting for you to come downstairs before I got started on anything."
"Ochen' milo," Russia said almost sarcastically, but then relaxed. "Spasibo chto podozhdal menya, no ty mog prosto nachat' zavtrakat' kak obychno."
America stared at him blankly. "Uh, so I know I've been picking up a little bit of Russian here and there but just so we're clear, we're not gonna have a full conversation in the language this early in the morning."
Russia furrowed his eyebrows in confusion when the sentence left his mouth.
"Did I say something wrong?"
"... You do realise you just talked to me in Russian."
"Ah." There was a very long pause. "I apologize - I didn't mean for it to come off as that way."
"Riiiight. So did you order something? I mean, you don't have a plate with you..."
Russia blinked slowly, startled out from gazing openly at America.
"... I'm afraid that slipped my mind as well. You do have to forgive me for finding you so distracting."
America wanted to throw the coffee at Russia for making his cheeks heat for a second time.
"What the - you sure you didn't hit your head this morning, Ivan?" But as he said this, he pushed the stockpile of pancakes and breakfast miscellany that was on his plate across the table and grinned. "I'll just get something else while you get started on this." The multitude of food on the plate was enough to feed an entire army, but then again, Russia and America weren't ordinary.
Before Russia could protest, America speared a piece of sausage and held it out, laughter playing on his lips. "Seriously, man, eat already. I ain't moving unless you - hey!"
The meat disappeared quickly into Russia's mouth.
"I - okay, that works too... Right, I'll be back -"
"We could always share," Russia suggested almost lazily.
"You've got to be kidding me - that plate's not enough for the both of us."
"We can always order more. Come sit with me."
"I'm seriously convinced you hit your head on something." America shook his head, and stood up. "It's seriously no big deal, and I'll be back just a sec -"
Russia surged forward and latched his hand around America's wrist, then jerked America forward, causing him to bend down and tug against the pull in retaliation. ("Ivan, what are you -") He brought up the knuckles to his lips, murmuring low enough for only both of them to hear - the world narrowed down to the both of them in that one moment.
"Ty znachish dlya menya bol'she chem ty kogda-libo uznaesh."
America didn't dare breathe, even if half the words were lost to him.
"Inogda ya dumayu chto vsyo eto son, i kogda ya zakroyu glaza, ty nebudesh zdeis."
Russia looked up to those heart-stopping baby blue eyes, before closing his eyes in a silent prayer, an unspoken thank you as he kissed those battle-worn hands. Then he smiled brilliantly, so brilliant it almost seemed unreal, eyes still shut.
"Spasibo bolshoe, vozlyublenniy."
There was a slight shuffle, and Russia felt America move his palm to brush against his white-gold hair, causing Russia to open his eyes slowly.
"You're very welcome."
His smile was much softer and his eyes were bright in such a way - that when Ivan looked into them, he knew that Alfred was really saying something else.
Special thanks goes to Pyrrhic, thanks to all those who helped with the Russian. You have my gratitude. Revised 18 September '10, because of missing linebreakers.
ты мой - you're mine
Dorogoy - darling
Solnyshko - little sun, sunshine
Krasiviy - beautiful
Если бы ты только мог понять - i wish you could understand
дорогой - dorogoy - darling
gospodin - mister
Ty prekrasniy - you're adorable
Ya lyublyu tebya - i love you
ne ponimayu - don't understand
Ya ponimayu - i understand
Prosti menya - forgive me
Pozhaluysta - please
Dobroe utro, lyubimiy - good morning, lover
Ochen' milo - how sweet
Spasibo chto podozhdal menya, no ty mog prosto nachat' zavtrakat' kak obychno - Thank you for waiting for me, but you could've just started on breakfast as usual.
Ty znachish dlya menya bol'she chem ty kogda-libo uznaesh - You mean more to me than you will ever know.
Inogda ya dumayu chto vsyo eto son, i kogda ya zakroyu glaza, ty nebudesh zdeis - Sometimes I wonder if this is all a dream - and when I close my eyes, you won't be here.
Spasibo bolshoe, vozlyublenniy - Thank you very much, beloved.