Summary: Set after my US/UK and G/It fics in which both couples are "established". Ludwig is looking for someone with whom to exchange "thoughts and observations regarding the day to day issues faced in relationships of an intimate nature"; Alfred is searching for some advice on Long Distance Relationships. Both have questionable taste in the "relationship experts" they consult.

Dating Advice for Germans and Americans – Chapter 1 – August

The Germans are a good people. On the whole, the best people perhaps in the world; an amiable, unselfish, kindly people. I am positive that the vast majority of them go to Heaven. Indeed, comparing them with the other Christian nations of the earth, one is forced to the conclusion that Heaven will be chiefly of German manufacture. But I cannot understand how they get there. That the soul of any single individual German has sufficient initiative to fly up by itself and knock at St. Peter's door, I cannot believe. My own opinion is that they are taken there in small companies, and passed in under the charge of a dead policeman.

- "Three Men on the Bummel" by Jerome K. Jerome, late 19th century English author.

August 1st, London

It never failed to sicken Arthur how thoroughly unsickened he was by the thrill that ran through him these days when his phone rang. Without looking up from his jotter, Arthur was now capable of reaching out and grabbing the receiver precisely about the middle to cradle against his ear.

"Hello you."

"Ah. Hallo?"

The phone slipped a little in his slacker grasp. Arthur gave the receiver a disconcerted frown.

"Who's this?"

"Ludwig. Were you expecting another call?"

A simple look at the clock told he him he really oughtn't to have been, "No. No. Still, I can't say that you would have been my first guess. What's the matter?"

"Nothing is the matter, I just wished, if it were possible, to ask you a few things."

Arthur's frown grew, his gaze absently following the course of a pigeon flying from a tree to his windowsill, where it stood and gave him a beady stare, "Alright. What kind of things, might I ask?"

"I am afraid they are quite personal matters, but, be assured, this conversation is confidential."

Arthur returned the pigeon's stare coolly, "Well, go on. I'm stumped here."

"How are your relations with Alfred, currently?"

"We have a "special relationship"," Arthur said promptly, "There's really little more to say."

"No," The German sounded equally dismissive, "I do not mean that. Political matters are not, sadly, our ambit. I meant between the two of you as a couple."

Arthur upset his mug of tea. He put the phone down, hearing a muted "Hallo? Arthur? Hallo?" as he grabbed a stack of Post-Its in a last ditch effort to soak up the worst of the spill. Once done, he took up the now sticky phone receiver and held it back against his ear.

"What on earth are you on about, "as a couple"?" he spluttered down the line.

"It is common knowledge that you are in a relationship."

"It bloody well isn't! I'd say it's about as uncommon a knowledge as is knocking about."

It sounded as though Ludwig was sighing on his end. His tone was just as measured when he continued, however, regardless of any irritation.

"It is as common a knowledge as your sexuality, Arthur."

"This is just getting rude-"

"I assure you, it is not. I am simply making my point. You say your relationship with Alfred is a secret; quite possibly to you looking outward, but not to those around you looking in at you both. Your behaviour in each other's presence is very telling. Likewise, your behaviour generally can be, ah, somewhat suggestive."

The pigeon gave a coo which Arthur felt sure had the stuttering quality of a chuckle about it, "I hardly go about pinching everybody's arses and kisses everyone's cheeks like a certain someone-"

"No, but- well, I shall give an example. Upon seeing Berwald last, I overheard you discussing the attractive pattern of your new Ikea sofa cushion covers and asking whether it would be wise to hand wash or machine wash them. You then proceeded to force the man into a conversation regarding the music of ABBA."

"This call better not have been to ask a favour, you know. I'm feeling somewhat ill-disposed towards you now, Ludwig."

The slight pause told him he'd hit the nail on the head.

"Arthur - might I meet you in a coffee shop somewhere in London? Tomorrow, say 8.30am?"

"Can't we just talk over the phone?"

"You take your isolation to extremes some times. I am only asking for one coffee, a brief chat. It can be anywhere you please. I simply feel that the sort of," Arthur heard how Ludwig considered his choice of wording carefully, "understanding, I wish for us to come to is better reached face to face. Transparency and honesty are necessary."

Arthur finally picked up the sodden, pilled post-it block between the tips of his thumb and forefinger and disposited the remains with a moist "plop" into his wastepaper bin, "Are you sure this isn't about war?"

"Most assured. Indeed, it is about the very opposite," Ludwig said, in a tone that suggested he was being led into divulging more than he wished to, "So do you agree?"

The pigeon gawped at Arthur expectantly. The Englishman gave a sigh.

"Oh, go on then. I have no bloody idea what you want though."

"Good. Thank you. Would 8.30am be an acceptable time for you?"

"8.30 tomorrow morning it is. Make it Starbucks on Berkley Street, W1, I can get the tube there. And if you tell Alfred I suggested that, we will be discussing war. Is that a deal?"

"It is fair. I will see you tomorrow."

Having replaced the receiver, Arthur noticed that the pigeon had flown away, leaving a present by the way of a large splatter of excrement on the sill. He sighed, unable to shake the feeling the splotch on the brick outside was an ill omen for things to come.

August 2nd, London

Arthur had almost gone ahead and fished out his mobile to ring the German and redirect him to the right Starbucks before he realised the man was, indeed, sat only a few tables away from where he stood. The difference, upon closer inspection, was simply Ludwig's lack of suit. Try as Arthur might, he had difficulties remembering the last time he had seen him in anything else. From the way in which the other man sat looking out of one large bay window, Arthur knew that the German had not seen him enter. He let himself study the man openly for a moment as a result: jeans, a plain t-shirt revealing those ridiculously muscled arms, hair slicked back but fairly half-heartedly. The Englishman pulled a face at how several women seemed to be on the point of turning Victorian and swooning at the sight of him.

Ludwig's sharp blue gaze finally picked him out as he continued walking over with a mug of hot chocolate in hand.

"Did I keep you waiting?" Arthur gestured to an empty espresso cup sat before Ludwig on the small circular table, still reeking of ludicrously strong coffee.

"No. I was early. Thank you for coming," Ludwig said. His tone was one Arthur classed as "Ludwig casual", a tone of voice that for anyone else would be indicative of being organised and business-minded.

"Quite alright," he shrugged, "I mean this is just my doorstep. What I find more curious is why you wanted to come all this way in order to see me," he sipped his drink then added, "Or at least I assume it's me you want? I really couldn't tell from our phone call."

"No, it's you," Ludwig rubbed at a smudge on the dial of his watch as he spoke, "The weather is pleasant today."

"Please, don't feel like you need to make small talk on my account."

"As you prefer. I was wondering if we might begin a correspondence."

Arthur chose to drink some more hot chocolate in order to prompt the German to expand on his idea while he waited for him to stop sipping.

"You are, after all, one of few men I have any relatively frequent dealings with who is in a long term, committed relationship."

There was that comment about him and Alfred again, Arthur thought with irritation, roughly replacing his mug on the table with a thump. Still, the man felt another attempt at gleaning a more satisfactory explanation as to how Ludwig knew about their relationship would prove bootless. He settled upon giving the man a simple nod of agreement.

"You have chocolate sprinkles on your upper lip," Ludwig added. Arthur wiped his mouth with one finger.

"Apologies. It is early. I'm only half with it," he stirred his drink with his spoon, "Which goes some way to explain why I'm lost in your train of thought. What would the nature of this correspondence be, exactly?"

"A way of exchanging any thoughts and observations regarding day to day issues faced in relationships of an intimate nature."

Arthur found himself wishing that the girls still openly ogling Ludwig could hear the man . He felt with contentment that his own sex appeal was boosted when contrasted with Ludwig's rather Victorian outlook on life.



"Face facts," the German's right eye twitched perceptibly, "What you're saying is this: you want dating advice."

Ludwig appeared to mull the words over as though they were an accusation, staring into the sludgy remains of his coffee as he mumbled, "Yes. I suppose I am saying that."

"And you're asking me for it."

"I explained why."

"Mm. I suppose it makes some sort of sense," Arthur agreed, "But aren't there other options? Say, I don't know, your brother? He's been around longer than you, he must have a few tales to tell."

Ludwig bowed his head in a gesture of further despondency.

"Not about committed relationships."

"... I suppose not, no. Then, how about just talking to Feliciano?"

The German became a little more animated in his response, his expression thoughtful and concerned, "I think that's the problem. He feels I don't take any initiative with these matters. I can see how it irritates him when I ask him over and again about our relationship, so-"

"So you thought you'd just ask me instead?"

"Believe me," Ludwig said solemnly, "I have tried searching my own soul for the answers. So far it has been quiet on the matter."

"It's a totally ridiculous idea."

"I apologise."

Arthur finished off his own drink, recalling for some unknown reason the splatter of pigeon muck on his windowsill as he considered Ludwig's plea, "But, I suppose we've got bugger all to lose. You've got my email address from work, of course. No offence but whilst you might have wanted to set this little understanding up face to face, I'm not all that eager to hear about your love life in the same manner. Drop me an email when you get chance with the nitty gritty and we'll see what we can cook up."

Still, their mutual nod of agreement aside, Arthur was left with an unsettled feeling in the pit of his stomach knowing that Francis was somewhere, perhaps padding naked about his kitchen at this hour, not being consulted on matters of l'amour.

August 7th, NYC

"Arthur," Alfred panted the name over and over, eyes closed tight and his body shivering with the feeling that his senses were being overloaded.

He tried, desperately, to catch his breath. His heels dug further into the mattress, a mirror, a response to how his head fell back upon the pillow, bangs falling haphazardly into his eyes.

"There, please. I love it when you touch just, just there," the hand stroked about the very root of his dick, teasing, sliding against the heated skin, fingers tracing over his balls before grabbing hold more firmly once again and pumping outright. He gave a loud moan at the change.

"Arthur. I'm gonna – I really need to-" Any moan or whimper caught in his throat as he shook with the release that flooded through him, heady and warm. Alfred lay back and felt his heart continue to pound away in the after-math, further fuelling the heat that poured off the skin of his face and neck. As his heartbeat became once again just a quiet, dependable thud in his chest, he let himself reach out one hand for a box of tissues in a set of drawers by his bed to wipe off his stomach and his hand.

He checked the clock: 6.32pm. So, 11.32pm GMT. After a moment's deliberation, he fished his mobile phone from his trouser pocket and dialled the number.

He gave a lazy, satisfied smile at how quickly Arthur answered.

"Sorry if you were asleep."

"I wasn't just yet. I was-"

"Reading," Alfred finished for him, "Yeah, I figured. Did you get that novel I mailed?"

" "The Big Sleep"? Yes, that's what I'm reading."

It had been a revelation Alfred had had only a few years ago, that books were one of few gifts Arthur would willingly accept without fuss or snide comments, "What'd you think of it?"

"As piss funny as I remembered it being. I approve," Arthur said, as though surprised by his own admission, "How's your day going?"

"Fine I guess. My boss said th-"

"Oi, what've I told you? No shop talk. Especially not this late at night. I mean, what have you been up to, personally?"

"You and that damn rule. I don't know, I've been keeping busy? Arranging a meet up with Toris. Shop talk, more shop talk," he gave a glance to the crumpled tissues beside him, "And, um, other stuff."

"Jolly good."

It was with hard to contain amusement that Alfred asked "How's the planning going?"

The Englishman's long pause before he replied spoke volumes.

"Fine. Absolutely fine."

Alfred quirked an eyebrow at his mobile, "Really though?"

"Shit. Thoroughly shit," Arthur sighed down the line at him, "I swear it was rigged, the host nation selection."

"It's totally random. And you haven't held a World Conference weekend since the 19th century. I think it's overdue," he said, one hand zipping his jeans back up, "Just get it over with."

"But the theme this year. Didn't you see how Francis – no, actually how everyone, yourself included - just ducked behind their hands to laugh not so subtly. I even saw Kiku's mouth trembling with the effort to keep serious!"

"No, I didn't see because I was too busy laughing," Alfred said, hearing a huff from Arthur, "Run the theme by me again? The memory's hazy."

"Piss off. Bloody "Diplomacy and Developing Relationships". It's rigged, and I know it. You're not telling me money didn't pass hands when you just so happened to get "Sports" as your theme in '76, and that gianormous surprise in the '90s, France getting "Cuisine". I have the distinct impression my name wasn't even in the hat on that particular occasion."

"What have you got planned then?" He heard Arthur shuffle about in his bed, possibly glancing out at his desk across the bedroom, "Nothing?"

"Not exactly nothing. But what I have got is fairly embryonic, yes," Arthur said unconvincingly, "That's enough discussing of that crap, anyway."


Alfred looked out of his window at the familiar figure standing firm and tall before his building, torch held high in an unwavering hand. He squinted a little, out beyond the river, beyond the coast, kidding himself somehow he could make out the faint, coarse outline of an island, more than 3000 miles away.

Arthur's gentle breathing down the phone made him smile, albeit it weakly. He held the phone a little closer, almost turning to lie with it on the bed, caught between his ear and the pillow.

"I miss you," the Englishman, admitted.

"Yeah, I know you do. I'm that awesome."

"Goodness. You're making me fall in love with you all over again," the man deadpanned, "Look - I'll ring you tomorrow, alright? It's getting rather late, I can feel myself nodding off."

"Okay, sure."

"Good Afternoon."

"Good night. Sweet dreams."

August 7th, Berlin

"Hey, Ludwig," The German nodded to show he was awake, placing his own hand over Feliciano's as it wandered over his chest under the bed covers, "Would it be okay if I maybe brought over a couple of old paintings?"

"Hm?" Ludwig tried his best to peer across at his lover without having to move drastically, being pleasantly settled on his pillow in spite of the small part of his mind that was telling him, admonishingly, that it was time to get up, "What's that?"

"I just thought that if I'm going to spend so much time over here it might be good if I brought over some stuff I like," Feliciano leaned across Ludwig, practically lying on top of him in his effort to meet his gaze full on, "Oh! But I don't mean your taste is bad, just, I don't know, I spend less and less time at my place, so it might be a good idea if I had some of my things here."

"Sure," Ludwig nodded. He stroked back Feliciano's bangs with one hand, letting a finger brush delicately against his curl and sending a little thrill through the other man, "I can't see why not. If you think of this place as your house, then it must be."

Feliciano let himself lay down properly, resting his cheek against the hollow of Ludwig's collarbone, "It is?"


"Thank you," he hugged the man lazily, clearly ready to fall back to sleep, "I'll do that."

"Wait, Feliciano-"

Before Ludwig could extract himself from the bed, the Italian was already snoring and muttering away to himself contentedly. He attempted to extract himself only to find the grip on his torso tightened with a mutter of something that sounded rather like "No. No - mine." He gave the ceiling a scowl and grabbed his Blackberry from the dresser and began to answer his emails instead, all but using the top of Feliciano's head as a makeshift desk.

August 8th, NYC


"Oh hey, I'm kinda busy," Alfred said, biting into a hamburger and attempting to chew it quickly enough to continue his sentence without interruption from Arthur, "Shop talk so I can't explain – your rule, remember? And then I promised I was gonna ring up Feliks and Toris."

"Oh," the word seemed suspiciously guarded, "Oh, fine."

"I can talk later though. How is stuff with you?"

He heard Arthur clear his throat, the vocal equivalent of a shrug, "Sound. World Conference plans are coming together. I better leave you to it though if you're busy – hang on, you're feeding those bloody pigeons in Central Park again, aren't you? I told you, you encourage them that way. They have diseases, you idiot."

"They looked hungry," he took another bite himself and gave one pigeon an apologetic look, "It's kinda weird that you could hear all that, though."

"It's more that I know your habits."

Reluctantly, Alfred gave his watch a glance, "Shit. I really have got to go now. I'll catch you later."

"Say it."

"Love you, "git"."

"Same. Talk to you soon."

August 15th, Berlin

"I was eating that-"

"You were," Gilbert corrected and took an exaggerated, satisfied bite out of the brockwurst he'd just seized. He raised an eyebrow at his little brother as he continued typing up a document on his laptop wearing an expression of wearied acceptance on his features.

"Whatcha doin'?"

"Working," Ludwig adjusted his glasses as though to verify his claim. His typing grew louder.

"Huh. Where's the hot piece of ass you keep around here?"

Ludwig pressed the enter button with enough force to create a crunch of plastic on plastic. Finally, the man fixed his brother with a look.


"Where's the hot piece of-"

"I assume that's Feliciano?"

Gilbert finished the brockwurst and licked his fingers, "Who else?" he said, mouth full. Ludwig visibly twitched.

"In the living room."

"You two are joined at the hip."

"I don't see how it matters to you if we are."

At that, a snatch of singing could be heard from down the corridor, lilting and cheery. Gilbert beamed at the sound.

"What's he doing, anyway?"

"Redecorating," Ludwig said as he placed a few documents neatly into different cubby-holes of his desk.

Gilbert slowed down in his ministrations with his fingers, staring at his sibling, "Seriously? You realise when you step back in there it's gonna be the Sistine Chapel, right?"

"He knows what I like. It's fine. He just said that he'd got some cushions and paintings at home that would look good in there."

"Hey - gorgeous? You there?" Gilbert called through to the Italian, to a hiss of "Don't call him that, idiot!" from Ludwig.

"Huh? Is that Gilbert? Yeah!" The Italian more or less shouted over the intervening distance, "Come see, come see!"

Ludwig rose from his desk chair, taking his glasses off, carefully folding them and placing them in their case. He followed his brother at a distance, watching as the man rounded the corner in the corridor and disappeared through the doorway into the living room. A moment later, he heard a full bellied laugh that he knew from his childhood was never inspired by good situations.

He turned the corner himself with a slow breath in. He felt his face go into lockdown as a small, energetic body barrelled into him at full pelt. The head of hair tickling against the base of his neck, he noted, was flecked with something – plaster, he realised, after a moment's consideration.

His eyes didn't lingered on his lover. They were drawn rather to the source of a new and unexpected smell in the room: the tart odour of fresh paint. His eyes focused in upon one wall of the room as though studying it through a gun-sight: the wall was now a sticky, still-wet shade of fresh, crisp grass green as opposed to the expected stark white. A dustsheet lay about the wall's base, also flecked with paint, and, he noticed upon further consideration, heaped upon one brown leather arm chair were a curious variety of empty wooden picture frames. Ludwig finally forced himself to look down and meet Feliciano's insistent look. The man gave him a beam of a smile, a smudge of paint on the apple of his cheek.

"It's good, right?"

Gilbert came up behind Ludwig and clapped a hand on the man's shoulder.

He addressed the Italian, however, when he spoke up, in a joyous tone, "Hey, Feliciano - when you're finished in here, you definitely need to do something about Ludwig's bedroom. That place is so dusty and dull, right?"

He felt his little brother tense under his touch with another bark of laughter.

August 16th, Berlin

"Hey," Feliciano balanced the phone on his hunched shoulder as he attempted to wrench up the lid of a can of wood stain, "Can you hear me?"

"Yeah, but-"

"Oh, but you're not Ludwig."

"Yeah, I'm not Ludwig," the voice agreed, "Wrong number, Feliciano."

Feliciano rocked back on his haunches as the lid came free with a jerk, "Ah! And sorry, Alfred! I have a new phone; Ludwig bought it. It's touch screen and stuff; apparently it's really good but I can't work it."

"Okay. See you around."

The Italian stirred the gloopy contents of the can, stirring in a vein of dye so that the stain turned a warmer, smoother colour, "Don't feel like you have to say, but is everything okay?"

There was a suspiciously loaded pause on the other end of the line, "Sure I am. Why'd you ask?"

"Eh, I don't know. It's hard to tell with phones but you sound like... Hm, well you know how you can feel at the end of a holiday and you realise you had all these plans and you didn't do any of the stuff you meant to? Kind of... weary and hollow?" He cringed as he saw a drop of wood stain fly through the air and catch the edge of a nearby table as he put down the old kitchen spoon he had been stirring with. He picked up a paint brush, "...Now you're angry. Sorry. I was just babbling and-"

"No. That's kinda right. I feel," He heard the man's voice grow softer then louder, as though he was tilting his head toward and away from his phone, pensively, "Just kind of not happy in myself. Like you said, hollow. Not bad. I'm still awesome and shit, but," there came a sigh, "Things are taking their toll."

"What things?" Feliciano painted the delicate outline of a tree onto the dust sheet to test the colour of the paint, "Ah! Arthur! I forgot that you two are together now. It's really good that you are, by the way. I had a feeling; I always had a feeling about you two."

"Wait. I never told you about that. It's a secret! It's classified information!" Alfred came close to yelping, his words quick-fire, "Did Arthur tell you? Was he drunk?"

"No. Eh, I just guessed?" It hadn't even been a guess, Feliciano realised, since it had been perfectly obvious, "But is that the problem: Arthur? You fought?"

"No. I mean, yeah, we do fight sometimes but that's not the problem. It's... it's the distance," the American said noncommittally, "It's no big deal really: we talk on the phone and email. I don't know, I guess I'm jealous of you Europeans sometimes, you can visit each other all the time. It's not so easy for us, plus it's really weird if I keep making lots of excuse for him to come and visit. We're not really like you and Ludwig. I need to wake up sometimes and know I don't have Arthur-drool on my sheets. I need a little space sometimes. Even so, I do kind of miss him and it just nags at me... it makes that hollow feeling."

"Mm," Feliciano began to stroke paint carefully onto the first picture frame, lips pursed with care, "I understand."

"You do?" the man almost sounded suspicious of the Italian's simple sympathy, "Has Ludwig ever been away that long while you've been together?" the American added awkwardly, "I mean, I know you guys didn't have much contact after WW2... But recently, you seem to be a combo deal. You're kind of Feliciano-and-Ludwig."

Feliciano smiled at Alfred's words, but let the expression fade as he considered the innocent question of whether Ludwig ever been away for a long time.

"Yeah, he went away for a time. And I missed him a lot, so I understand," he said, gently stroking the first line of rich, mahogany wood stain over the plain surface of the picture frame.

"Oh," Alfred said, in soft confusion. Their silence was finally broken by Alfred, after several more careful brushstrokes from Feliciano.

"Um. Well. Do you have any advice about that kind of stuff, maybe?"

August 17th
From: Ludwig, to Kirkland, A.


I am in grave need of advice. I have listed my current problems as bullet points below:

1) My living room currently smells of paint and pasta.

2) Feliciano yawned in the middle of intercourse the previous night (I apologise for the vulgar tone of this email, but I cannot avoid these details, really).

3) I no longer dare ask Feliciano how he is feeling or what he would like me to do with regard to our relationship, lest he give me a look I can only compare to the one he gives me when I say I'm going to go and work out for the afternoon or (apologies) whenever any mention is made to your cooking,

Have you ever encountered anything similar to these circumstances? What should I do?

I await your reply,


August 18th
From Kirkland, A. to Ludwig.


Come on, stick out of your arse now mate. You're asking me why your spunky little Italian boyfriend is yawning while you shag him and why he's pulling faces at you when you ask him to tell you what to do to make him happy (And don't worry. I've come to believe everybody's slights are part of a big bloody conspiracy you lot have concocted and that, actually, you all adore my cooking).

I myself have never dated an Italian, though I did once get involved with a rather lacksidasical bloke in the 1600s who was a bit too interested in the arts and a little too apathetic about politics and the economy, so I think I have some inkling of what you're going through. Either way, I've given your predicament some thought.

Oh, but before I go into that, I thought I better check that you realise I'll want small remuneration for this favour I'm paying you. Nothing too bad, but I won't go into it here. Expect a letter in the post sometime this week.

Anyway, back to business:

1) It could smell worse. Why the wet paint, though? I can only assume he's painting you nude (I mean both of you there) or that he's decorating. Still, it really could be worse.

2) It's just an idea, but is it possible that you have a problem with Feliciano yourself? Certainly, you're not likely to be (openly) rolling your eyes at him or yawning mid-coitus, but if you have any issues it might be giving off a subtle vibe that is inspiring Feliciano's behaviour. Maybe you should consider whether you need to get any stuff off your chest before you can "happily" launch yourself into resolving the issue of being too scared to be romantic and constantly verifying with Feliciano that you're what he wants.

Right, I think I sound a bit too much like an agony aunt for my own good, so I best sign off,


P.S. Care to run the World Conference for this year? I know you enjoy organising things.

August 20th
From Ludwig to Kirkland, A.


I will give your suggestions some thought.

Feliciano is redecorating extensively (my encouraging him to hang paintings around the house has become an invitation to repaint and reupholster), not painting my portrait (I did happen upon him decorating in the nude, however). As to the remunerations -I will wait for your letter.

I'd prefer it if you didn't call Feliciano my "spunky little Italian boyfriend" (Really. It would be wise for you if you didn't.)

Many thanks,



No. I am good at organisation; I do not, however, actively seek out additional events to organise. Again: no.


You may have to lower the drawbridge before the other nations will be able to reach you to attend the Conference.

August 21st
From Kirkland, A. to Ludwig.

Good God you made a joke.

... I mean to say. You made a joke. Glad I was sitting down when I read that.

August 24th, Berlin

Feliciano gave Ludwig a tender kiss on each check and handed him a letter when he arrived home that evening. The letter, on closer inspection, was hand addressed in what looked like fountain pen and contained one small folded sheet that read:

A Kirkland,


Kindly send beer.