Alfred was being torn apart.
It was almost as though absolutely everything was being torn in two, his world, his very soul. And he could do nothing about it.
His civil war.
It was slow torture. There was not one unified cause for him to support, no. His people were torn. Families, friends, neighbors, everyone. There wasn't one of his people who had gone unaffected.
Because he couldn't take sides, most of the time he stayed at home, pacing.
There was a soft knock at his door.
"America? Alfred?" a soft voice with a thick British accent said just outside, "May I come in?"
Alfred pulled himself up from his table and opened his door.
"My God, Alfred, what have you done to yourself?"
There were deep circles under his dim blue eyes that held so little of the drive, the unquenchable desire they had once scintillated. His clothes were bloodstained and torn and he was holding one arm a little gingerly. Arthur pulled him back inside and pulled him into his arms. "Why haven't—"
"I have to do this myself," Alfred whispered, undeniable pain echoed in his voice, "You can't help me. I have to show the world that I can—that I can—" Arthur gently pushed him into a chair and disappeared for a moment. He returned with tea just like Alfred thought he would.
America let a bittersweet smile cross his lips-that was always Arthur's first response. First tea to calm down, then talk England sat down across from him, fussing over the tea, and he couldn't help but be reminded of many years ago, when Alfred was still his colony, not so much this grand nation.
But now… that was threatened. His 'sea to shining sea' future could end up shattered.
"I have to stay strong. Stay one nation. Otherwise you and France will-"
"No, America," England said softly, and Alfred looked up with a tear-streaked face.
"No, I wouldn't. You've… you've grown. You're not the little lad I found in the wild and argued with Francis over. You-you're America. You won't give in. You're not… you're not my colony," he said and leaned forward, placing a hand on each side of the younger nation's face, "Alfred, you'll get through this. You just have to believe."
"A-Arthur-" but before he could say more, their lips were sealed together as Arthur tried to convince him, pouring unspoken words into the action to show him that yes, it would be alright.
Everything would be alright.
America leaned into him, closer, tears stopping. Arthur wiped them away with a gentle motion of his thumb.
"Shh, it's alright," he whispered and kissed him again.
Alfred seemed to have calmed down enough to pull away and rest his head on Arthur's shoulder.
"England… it hurts," he whispered, "There's so much pain everywhere. Every part of me hurts…"
"You'll be fine. No matter what, I know you'll make it through."
England traced under America's searing blue eyes as his head lifted. They pressed their lips together again with a gentler tone, softly, with just simple love passing between them.
"Hey, Arthur?" Alfred whispered.
"Could… we just stay like this for a little while?"
"Of course, you dolt."
And so they stayed like that for some time, arms around one another, neither wanting to admit how much they missed this simple atmosphere of unspoken 'it'll be alright'.
A/N: Written for a dear friend of mine- I hope you enjoyed it! It was fun to write. This is my first EnglandxAmerica fic, so I hope that I portrayed them alright. Ahhh, I know Alfred's a little ooc, but.... I'm rather fond of Civil War!America ;D We just went over the Civil War in my history class, so I was pretty excited. XDDD Anyway, thank you for reading, and I dearly hope you liked it!