Ludwig flung the device away in horror. He dressed as fast as his body would allow. "We have to get out of here, now."

Gilbert stumbled to his feet and a leather booklet was thrust into his hands. "What's going on? Who was it?" He asked, confused.

The blonde held his lover's hand tightly and spoke in a grave tone "There's no time to explain, take the passport and get as far away from here as you can. I-" Germany froze when he opened the door to come face to face with a firing squad.

The deafening roar of assault rifles drowned out all other sound. It wasn't until his brother fell into a bloodied heap that Gilbert realized he was screaming.

Countless holes dotted at a chest that rose and fell in ragged gasps. Cold tears mixed with the warm fluid staining the elder's face and hands as he tried to stop the bleeding.

Unblinking orbs of frigid violet traced the scene in calm fury. Without a word, he grabbed the hysterical East German and forced him to stand with his back to the wall. Strong hands grabbed the pale grey collar of his uniform and ripped it open, sending buttons flying everywhere.

The Russian bit his tongue in disgust at the marks on the beautiful body before him, they were as profane and filthy as defiling an angel. He tore away the last pieces of the garment his lover was now unfit to wear, exposing warm skin to the chill air. "Why?" He demanded "Why did you do this?"

Gilbert showed no shame at being stripped to the waist in front of the crowd and even in the face of danger. "I love him." He answered.

A roar of anger and despair was ripped from the Russian's throat. He grabbed a fistful of snowy hair and struck the East German across the face, screaming "After everything he's done to you? He tried to dissolve you and left you to die at the hands of the Allies! He doesn't love you!" Every fevered word was punctuated by another blow. "He never loved you!"

He didn't stop until purple bruises were beginning to form around the East German's eyes and his bottom lip was spilt open. "There is nothing on the other side of the wall, but your own dissolution."

Guilt settled in his heart as blonde lashes fell closed and he tried to comfort Gilbert. Ivan cupped his hand over a pained cheek and kissed a falling tear, whispering gently "Why can't you love me instead? I'll do anything you ask, I'll be your slave…just please love me."

I only wanted to protect you.

The blonde heard a gunshot and looked down to see a crimson stain spreading across a white shirt. The smaller man had pressed Ludwig's gun to his stomach and pulled the trigger. The smoking gun in Gilbert's hand just didn't seem real. None of it seemed real. This can't be happening…

"I'm sorry, Vanya." With those cold words, the smaller man pushed him aside to tend to his wounded brother.

How can he be leaving?

A torn shirt was tied around Germany's chest as a crude bandage and he helped him to his feet. "Can you hold on a little longer? We're almost there…" The elder brother asked as Ludwig nodded and held on tightly to keep from falling.

"What are you waiting for? Stop them!" Russia shouted at the soldiers to arrest them, only to see them step out the Prussian's path.

Ivan recognized the young men's faces and knew they were all East German.

They too had families, friends, lovers, on the other side of the wall. No number of miles of concrete or barbed wire, no number of soldiers or guns could stop the hundreds of thousands that crossed the East-West border.

The Russian chased after them and held back the pain of betrayal. He couldn't run like this, but Germany was far more injured than he was.

He followed the trail of blood and caught up quickly, with the wall within sight. "Halt! I order you to stop!" He cried out, showing more pain than he had intended.

Prussia was practically carrying his sibling now and both were soaked in a warm, sticky red.

Ivan grabbed him and pointed the barrel of a pistol between those eyes. The same burning pools he had adored so long. Never before had a color seemed more fierce and defiant than the ruby hue he yearned to be lost in.

The gun was shaking in his hand and Gilbert said sternly "Let me go, we both know it's over." The Russian lowered the gun and watched helplessly as flashing lights and sirens were reflected in platinum hair. One of the border-guards called the West German police and arrived on the scene within minutes.

Prussia guarded his injured sibling faithfully until an ambulance came to take him away. A team on doctors loaded the blonde German onto a stretcher as he drifted in and out of consciousness. He held his Gilbert's hand in his and asked, unsure "…Did we make it?"

The East German felt like he going to cry again and stammered "Y-Yes, we made it, we're home now." He let his lover be carried away and knew everything would be alright.

Ivan's heart was breaking and he lifted his head at a tug to his sleeve. The smaller man spoke softly and saw the blood seeping out from behind a coat "...You should let the doctors take a look at you."

The brief concern made him smile and flicker of hope warmed his chest. Ivan shook his head and tried to hide his dizziness. "You know that I've survived much worse than this."

German Democratic frowned and knew it was hopeless to argue. He wished he could say something that would fix the rift between them. He cared about Ivan, more than he would ever admit, and he had hoped that if he tried hard enough, he could fix whatever was broken inside.

He had tried, and failed.

Gilbert shuffled his feet and didn't want to make anymore promises he couldn't keep. He wanted to thank him for everything he had done for the Prussian, from a kind word to the greatest sacrifice. Many things were spoken in the silence; apologizes, confessions, and the acknowledgement of a romance that could never be. Despite everything that needed to be said, all the East German could choke out was a plain "Take care of yourself, okay?"

"I will" He lied while a frantic part of him wanted to cut out his still-beating heart and drink until he couldn't feel anymore. Gilbert smiled at him faintly, and the Russian watched the love of his life walk away.

Ivan walked home alone and the coldness he felt inside was a stark contrast with the warm welcome he received.

A kind brunette greeted him at the door and wordlessly placed a steaming mug into his hands. Ivan took the simple comfort gratefully and asked softly "Toris, why does everyone leave me?"

The Lithuanian didn't know how to answer and Ivan's overwhelming sadness was deep enough to drown in. "I don't know, but…" His mouth was creating words faster than his mind could process their meaning "I won't leave you."

I always thought you hated me… The blonde was confused, but smiled anyway.