Author's note: A de-anon from the LiveJournal kink meme.
That's What You Get: Epilogue
Gilbert was more than happy when school was over. Ivan had walked him home early this morning and Ludwig had practically tackled him down in relief when he stepped inside the house. Then Ludwig spotted Ivan at the front door, and then he had to hold his younger brother down to prevent another version of a Beilschmidt vs Braginski bout. (He knew who would have won anyway; Ivan might be his boyfriend, but West was his awesome little brother.)
After Ivan took his leave and a very hasty explanation from Gilbert, Ludwig calmed down a bit and then proceeded to shove his brother into the bathroom, all the time lecturing on how they were going to be late for school if Gilbert did not hurry.
"What do you mean, school?" he had protested. After the night he had – he fought in vain to prevent his cheeks from turning rather red – school was the last thing on his mind. He had wanted to just collapse in bed and catch up on his sleep.
"You've missed too many days already! If you miss any more, you might not graduate!" Ludwig had thundered.
So it was with great reluctance that Gilbert allowed his younger brother to drag him to school – oh heck, he was too tired to put up a fight anyway – and somehow, managed to get through the day even though he felt like a Resident Evil game, except with less guns and more zombies.
He leaned against the wall when he arrived at the usual meeting spot at the gate. Arthur was already there, sitting on the low brick wall and doing his homework as usual. Ivan arrived some minutes later and kissed Gilbert on the cheek in his usual greeting, before asking Gilbert to wait for a bit since the Russian wanted to ask Antonio something.
"So you two did kiss and make up," Arthur observed, tapping the notebook on his lap with his pencil.
Gllbert stiffened. "Who told you?"
Arthur shrugged and pointed at Antonio, who arrived a moment ago and was now in a conversation with Ivan.
Gilbert let out a low growl. If Antonio had opened his big stupid mouth, that most likely meant at least half the school knew. "I'm going to–"
"Kill that idiot, yes yes, where have I heard that before," Arthur interrupted as he put his homework away. "So what is it?"
"The text message you sent this afternoon? You asked me to wait at the main gate after school, since you needed my help with something. Well?" Arthur patiently reminded him.
"Oh, that." Gilbert hastily rummaged in his backpack and once he was sure Ivan was not looking, he shoved a small plastic bag at Arthur. "Quick, shove it in your bag!"
Arthur was confused, but did as Gilbert asked. "What's in the plastic bag?"
"Ivan's favourite scarf. It's kind of messed up, so I was hoping you could fix it. You did say you were good at sewing and mending stuff."
"Well, it would depend on how bad it's torn–"
"It's not too bad. Blackie just chewed on one end."
Arthur stared at Gilbert, clearly not happy at just having stuffed in his backpack a piece of clothing that was not only mangled but also heavily drooled upon by Ludwig's dog, even if it were wrapped in plastic bag. "Please tell me you had the decency to at least wash the blasted thing."
Gilbert blinked. "Oops?"
Arthur's eyes narrowed. "This is going to seriously cost you, mind."
He smiled and rubbed his hands in glee. "There was this football jersey on eBay I saw the other day–"
"Ah, come on!"
"–or I could just show this to Ivan there." Arthur smiled evilly.
Gilbert groaned in defeat. So much for saving up for his dream drum kit. "Fine! Just have it fixed!"
"You wanted to ask me something about Gilbert?" Antonio repeated, feeling a little bit puzzled. It was not often that people came to him for advice. Especially advice on Gilbert; now that was even rarer. Francis once had jokingly remarked that learning something useful from the usually obtuse Antonio sort of made you feel horribly defeated somehow. Still, he felt rather pleased that someone would seek his help.
Ivan tapped his lower lip, then started to twiddle his thumbs. "I think he's still mad at me," he admitted.
"Really?" Antonio asked.
"He still calls me an idiot and a moron every three sentences. At least I think he did, since we don't learn those words in German class."
"No, that's just part of Gilbert's forgiving process. He just needs to get even first, which is why all the name-calling and insulting," Antonio explained. "I should know, he's been angry with me lots of times! And maybe more. Francis says that I just never noticed! Oh, Francis is here, so you can ask him for yourself if you don't believe me."
"I see!" Ivan brightened and then smiled at Francis in greeting, but a moment later he looked just a bit worried. "Does this... forgiving process of his take long?" he asked Antonio.
"Depends on how pissed off he was. In your case, I think it would take at least a week," said Antonio helpfully.
"Oh," Ivan said, not looking forward to a week of constant verbal abuse.
"Bribing him with ice cream sort of helps. He'd rather kill himself than admit it, but he loves the stuff."
"Oh." Ivan beamed. "Thank you."
"Please, Gilbert? I get to call you птичка. Or зайчик."
"Only because you're the sole person in school who speaks Russian. Now quit it."
"Because you sure as hell don't look like a baby doll to me!"
"Oh. So that is what Püppchen means?"
Antonio watched as the two boys walked away, Gilbert still glaring and grumbling at Ivan. "Are we sure they're okay now? Because I think Gilbert is kind of angrier than usual." He winced. "I mean, he's been mad at me more than a few times, but I'm pretty sure he's never smacked me on the head before."
Francis squinted at the two boys in the distance. "No, I'm pretty sure they're fine," he said after a quick moment of observation.
"Yeah. See? They're holding hands."
Antonio laughed. "Kind of funny, don't you think?"
"All this time we've been saying how pathetic Gilbert is and how he needs to quit bothering us whenever we're out on a date and look – he's the first one among us to actually go steady!"
Francis good-naturedly smacked his friend on the head. "Ah, shut up."
Two weeks later, Gilbert felt a sense of déjà vu when he stood in the arrival hall of the airport, Ivan holding his hand.
"Please tell me that your older sister is not as freaky as your kid sister," Gilbert grumbled, staring at the flight board. After the whole thing with Natalia, he was quite understandably hesitant about meeting Ivan's other sister, who was arriving today for a quick visit. Ivan had insisted that he come along to the airport to meet her.
He had also insisted that Gilbert wear that scarf; thankfully the Russian had not noticed that the scarf was now about three inches shorter than its original length. Arthur had tried his best, but Blackie was very spirited when it came to chew toys.
"No, she's really sweet! You would like her, I am sure!" Ivan said.
"Yeah, you also said Natalia was hot. So does sweet here mean rampaging berserker or something?"
"I'm serious! She is nothing like Natalia. Ah, I believe her flight has landed. Let's head over to the waiting lounge, yes? Oh, do you want me to get you anything while we wait? Something to eat or drink, maybe?"
"No. And quit treating me like some stupid helpless chick, it makes me feel like throwing up–"
Ivan put on a hurt look.
"–in the nicest possible way, of course," Gilbert finished lamely, while Ivan promptly beamed. "Fine. Coffee."
"Vanya! You and Natasha were right! He is really pretty!"
Ivan smiled as his older sister cooed over his boyfriend in a mixture of English and Russian. She had a tendency to do that when she was excited and could go on for quite a while. It was good that their first meeting was turning out well, yes?
"And Vanya, he is like a bunny too!"
She was obviously pleased and Gilbert seemed to be enjoying the praise he was getting, since he was blushing.... Wait.
Ivan sighed, while his sibling continued to gush about how cute his boyfriend was. "Gilbert, please look a bit higher."
Ivan squeezed his boyfriend's hand a little more strongly. "Look at her face, Gilbert."
"Huh? Oh yeah, I was!"
Ivan pouted. This was going to be a long week.
- The End -
i. This is my first try at a romance fic; and of course, I always turn it into something daft. Trying to write teenage versions of these two was harder than I thought. Anyway, thanks for all the reviews, favourites and PMs. And you should thank the anon who requested this on the meme.
ii. No, I don't even know where the title came from.
iii. The possibility of a sequel? It would depend on whether I can come up with a plot that's half-way decent for once. So don't get your hopes up.