Nnnnggghh....I know, I know. I wasn't going to write anymore Angst. Or at least, not for a while. But this popped into my head and I couldn't get it out, no matter how hard I tried and-

Okay. I'll stop making excuses now.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------hetalia belongs to hidekaz himuruya

The Holy Roman Empire threw himself into a long war.

Gilbert stalked among the corpses, looking, looking…oh.

There; lying in the dirt, half-covered by the tattered fold of his cloak; a small boy.

Gilbert crouched down and touched the boy's thin shoulder. "Hey. Ludwig."

No response.

The albino teen gripped the shoulder tightly. "C'mon, Ludwig…"he muttered. "Don't do this me…c'mon, c'mon!"

The boy stirred. Gilbert relaxed.

"G-Gilbert? Was ist?" he murmured, hoarsely.

The older boy scooped the younger into a tight hug. "Thank god you're alright," he said, choking on his words slightly.

"I-I'm not sure…" the boy said, weakly. "I feel…I don't know. I think I…" he collapsed, his thin frame folding like a dying flower. He lay, curled on his side, blue eyes staring blankly at his black boots. "Gilbert." He said, only his lips moving. "Don't destroy the world with Roderich. And try to stand up for yourself more around Elizaveta."

"Hey! I do- she's a demon!" the older brother began, indignantly, but suddenly he noticed that Ludwig was silent, blue eyes closed.

"L-Ludwig? Ludwig!" the albino shook him frantically. "Please…ach, scheiβer!" he suddenly howled.

It seemed hopeless.

Was his younger brother just going to…fade away now? He had seen it once before, to his grandfather Germania. But Germania had reprimanded Gilbert to the last, until he was gone, not curled up to die like his younger brother had done. The dying empire's last words to his children had been stern and orders; Behave. Hold on to your honor and discipline (the latter had been sent with a glare at Gilbert). And don't get mixed up with Italians.

Then he had been gone.

So why was Ludwig not disappearing? Why was he silent, there, on the dirt? The Holy Roman Empire had fallen, that much was certain. So why was the boy who embodied the nation's soul still there, motionless?

Gilbert picked up the bent black hat lying besides his brother. He punched it into shape and after straightening the boy's body into a rigid pose he would have approved of, he set the hat on his head, over the blonde, slightly mussed hair.

He didn't want to see his brother fade away.

Gilbert stood and, after saluting the fallen empire, he turned and began walking away.

He did not cry.

W-well, he didn't really die, so it's all okay? *facepalms*

I didn't write this as Germancest, but I guess you can see it if ya squint. It's supposed to be more of a brotherly thing.