A/N: So this has been sitting in my docs for about 3 months, sorry about that. Sorry for the grammatical mistakes and stuff. SORRY SORRY SORRY

Your Sweet Voice

Chapter 7




"Everything that you were, everything that you are, and everything that you will be... lies right here." He places hand over Matthew's chest. "I can feel it beating, it warms me, keeps me company, its a beautiful jewel in my eyes. I love everything about it, I love its tremors, its skips, its jumps, its calmness. It keeps me calm, Mattie. I want nothing more than to keep it safe."

Brandishing his knife, he lowers himself until his lips brushes against his brother's ear, knife nearing his chest. "I love you, Matthew. I love you with all my heart. And... I know you love me... with all your heart."

At this, he plunges the knife into his chest, cutting through muscle and tissue. Bones cracking, Matthew lets out a bloodcurdling scream, arms and legs thrashing against the restraints. Alfred has a serious face of deep concentration, rippng through Matthew's chest. He reaches in to the mess of splattered blood and muscle to grasp the one thing he was seeking. As his hand wraps around the beating organ, he tugs it, Matthew chokes and gasps, tears falling, pleading, pleading his brother to stop.

With some cuts and a final tug, Alfred finally retrieves his jewel, looking at in pure wonder and glee. He glances at his brother's mutilated body and smiles a disturbing, terrifying smile, clutching Matthew's heart closer to his chest.

Matthew lurched forward from his bed, gasping out of terror of what he had just dreamt. After a few moments to assure himself he's still alive and fine and not a bleeding pile of a mangled corpse, he lights a candle set on his bedside table. He looks over at his sleeping brother and couldn't help but recoil quickly. Gingerly, he slips of bed and walks towards his window, looking out at the dark landscape. He is able to make out some trees in the distance and even a small fox running across the yard. Matthew places a clammy hand on his forehead, feeling a cold sweat. What the hell was that about? he wonders. His hand wanders to his chest, feeling his still beating heart (in its rightful place).

He was getting scared. Scared of the empty feeling that continues to grow in his heart. Scared of what is to become of him. Everything started to feel stagnate, in a state of constant numbness. Matthew stares out into the world as he tries to empty his mind once again. He found that thinking about his situation led to hope, to escape, to happiness. It led to frustrations, madness, half-formed plans never carried out. He could burn down the house while Alfred slept; he could slit his brother's throat, drown him in the lake, snap his neck... but he knows he can't. No matter how close he was, he couldn't do it. Alfred held a very tight chain around Matthew's neck, encrusted with flowers and jewels to trick the world into thinking he was happy. Now, that chain is starting to rust and Matthew is scared.

A shuffling noise of fabric is heard, and Matthew stiffens.

"mmm.. mat-..." Alfred mumbles. Matthew can make out his brother's dark outline of an arm, groping around blindly. Alfred finally cracks open his eyes and notices the small light by the window, seeing the blond in the dim orange light of the candle.

"wassamatter? Why 're you up this early?"

The fire in Matthew belly suddenly roars to life and he wants nothing more than to strangle him, make him give back what has been taken, hurt his brother the way Alfred hurt him. It won't do any good, but the justice served-

Matthew takes deep breaths, calms himself to his usual coolness. Being numb is his only comfort.

A knife clangs onto the floor. Matthew stares between the knife and his hand. Wasn't he just holding it a second ago...? He bends over to pick it up, holds it up to the light to inspect it. Nothing seemed to be wrong. He noted how a few days ago he poised a pair of shears to cut his hair; one second it was in his hand, the next, fell on to the floor, stabbing his foot. Alfred had rushed in that day, scolding him and caring for his tiny injury. As he cleaned the blood, he said to Matthew, "I like your hair the way it is, don't cut it!" in which Matthew's only reply was a blank stare. He had been feeling lethargic lately, a lack of motivation to do anything at all, just numb. He concluded that it must be the reason for his spacey moments.

All he remembers now is tying a ribbon in his hair to keep it out of the way.

Alfred as usual, brought his brother out with him to explore the day's events on a sunny day in the midwinter season. A small festival was taking place, perhaps to boost the morale of the townspeople to endure the long, cold winter months with a bit of entertainment. Alfred smiled and laughed, pointing to the spectators, saying, "Look at that! I'd like to see you try that!" while Matthew quietly observed.

After the small spectacle from the street performers, Alfred wanted to warm up, so he led his brother to a building which was hosting a bazaar, filled with trinkets, clothing and food.

"Don't stray too far," said Alfred as he let Matthew wanders around. Nodding lightly, Matthew made his way towards the exotic-looking fabrics from India. As he smiled, Alfred watched his brother go and looked as some interesting second hand trinkets the man was selling. As he was admiring an almost brand-new looking gun, the man behind the counter gave a small chuckle.

"They are a handful, aren't they?," Alfred looked up with a small confused look. The man nodded towards Matthew's general direction. "Your little lady friend. Although I must ask you, why is she wearing trousers?"

Alfred could only blink. He looked towards were his brother was, and he was struck by how feminine he suddenly looked. A small spark appeared in his eye, an idea from the dark depths of his mind had formed.

"...Sh... She.. um... she works on the farm. You know how useless petticoats are." He said, shrugging. The man nodded, smoking his pipe, he added with a smile, "Are you to be married soon then?" Alfred spluttered, the bearded man could only laugh at his reaction. "I should take that as a no?"

Alfred hesitated, but replied softly, "...w-we're thinking ...about it...".

"You're a strapping young lad, it's the ripe time to do so! Especially if you are on a farm, you must need tough, strapping young boys for the farm work! Don't let that little woman become an old maid, lad." The man's laughter let loose his pipe's smoke, causing Alfred to cough.

"Y-yes... I suppose..."

"Here," the man got off his stool and started looking around his little kiosk. He pulled out a simple but beautiful white dress. "This was worn by my wife; we have been happily married for 30 long years, why don't you have it? For good luck," he smiled, offering the dress to him. Alfred could only blush and look around nervously, in case Matthew was close by.

"But sir! I'm sorry, I-I couldn't! This is your family heirloom!"

"Ah no, lad, my wife sadly passed last winter and we have no children of our own. I was intending to sell it to a happy couple in the hopes that perhaps the good luck of a long married life might be passed on by this dress." He finished with a sincere and warm smile.
Alfred kept looking back from Matthew to the dress, conflicted.

"... I'll take it."

Matthew observed several handmade trickets and admired their details. The old vendor lady smiled at him warmly, and he shyly returned it. As he was scanning through the jewellery, he could have sworn he spotted one that almost looked like a silver bear. A polar bear... he thought.

However, before he could reach over and touch it to get a closer look, he suddenly felt something or someone playing with his hair. He looked to his left to find Alfred weaving a simple flower into his hair.

"I just thought... we needed a bit a life in this time of cold snow and ice..." Alfred smiled. After a small pause, Matthew brought his hand up to feel the flower in his hair. As Alfred untied the ribbon to let Matthew's hair loose, he jerked his head in the general direction of the old man he was chatting with, "Courtesy of the gentleman over there."

Matthew looked down to see a big bag his brother was carrying, he pointed to it. "Oh this? It's a little something, nothing special!" Alfred brought his hand up to stroke the blond's hair, and leaned in to place a kiss on his brother's cheek. To the old vendor lady and those passing by, it merely looked like a small kiss from a young man wooing his lady friend. To Matthew, it was a horrible public act of dominance... he could feel the temperature plummet around his body and his shaking began.