A/N: Another one for the kink meme. That German bros. one that I just uploaded was also for the kink meme, though I forgot to make note of it at the beginning. Anyway, the prompt for this one is as follows: "So...two nations just cuddling in bed and being all happy and comfortable with each other. It doesn't have to be overly fluffy or whatever, but I just have this image of it being cold and unpleasant, and maybe one of the nations having had a crappy day, then snuggling up with someone who really cares. Pairings can be SuFin, Spain/Romano, US/UK, or GerIta (or actually? Anything works). I think Sweden would probably be an epic cuddler, even though he looks scary. Because he's such a teddy bear, really. Also, can you guys imagine how hard it would be for Romano to snuggle without being totally grumpy? Even if he wanted to cuddle!"
Romano snarled as he looked down at his watch to find that it read only thirty seconds later than the last time he had checked. He held it to his ear, making sure that it was still ticking. It seemed to be running normally. It was eleven thirty at night and Spain still wasn't home. Where on earth could he be? He never took this long to return after work. Not that Romano particularly cared that he could be lying in an alley somewhere, beaten up and bleeding, his phone crushed by his attacker, calling weakly for help to heartless passersby who just didn't want to get involved…
Romano swallowed hard, rubbing his eyes, and fidgeted restlessly. The possibility didn't worry him in the slightest. He only cared at all because Spain hadn't shown up to make him dinner like he usually did and he planned on giving him an earful for it. The nerve of some people was astonishing, really. Here he was, working himself to the bone at his job as a nation, and he couldn't even come home to a warm meal and a similarly warm hug from someone he lo… whose presence he could only just tolerate. He didn't give a rip about the hug, of course; he would just shove stupid Spain out of the way to get to the food. But Spain was such a screw-up that he didn't even seem to understand his simple role in their relationship.
It was raining hard outside. Romano didn't need to be able to see through the pitch darkness beyond the front window that he wasn't pacing in front of to know that. What if Spain had been driving home and hadn't been able to see properly in the driving rain and had gotten into a wreck? What if he was being rushed to the emergency room and no one would know to call him and let him know until Spain regained consciousness and could tell them to do so? What if Spain never regained consciousness? What if he just waited and waited for that inconsiderate jerk to come home and he never did? What if he became like his pathetic brother who had waited hundreds and hundreds of years for that asshole Holy Roman Empire? Romano let out a harsh bark of laughter, his voice cracking with scorn at the very thought. As if that would ever happen. He would have to actually have some positive feelings toward Spain in order to reach the same level of pathetic that Italy had attained.
Suddenly the front door creaked open. Romano wiped his eyes hurriedly (they were full of tears from laughing too hard at the thought of him being as pathetic as his little brother) and whipped around to face the dark and dripping figure in the doorway. Spain stumbled in, closing the door by leaning his back against it wearily. There was relative silence, broken only by Spain's sniffling.
"I'm home," he said finally with a lopsided smile. "Sorry I'm so late… My car broke down and I didn't have money for a taxi…"
Romano ran to his side, spreading his arms wide to… box Spain's ears. He kept his head down as he did so, not wanting Spain to see the last vestiges of the tears of laughter in his eyes and get the wrong idea.
"I-idiot…!" Romano sneered. "Whoever said I was worried about you? I've got more important shit to worry about! Anyway, why the hell didn't you call? N-not like I would have come to get you but still! It's common decency, you bastard! I had to make my own dinner tonight 'cause I got sick of waiting for your stupid late ass!"
"Sorry," Spain said again softly. He sounded rather exhausted. "My phone's battery died."
Spain shivered violently and muffled a sneeze in the crook of his arm.
"Dammit, you're so freaking useless," Romano griped. "First you force me to make my own dinner and now you've got the nerve to make me take care of you on top of that? God, you're like the fucking worst boss ever! What're you waiting for, ya ass hat? Take off your shoes already! Get in the shower! If you think I'm gonna play nurse for you if you get sick, you're even more of a dumbass than I thought!"
Spain sniffled again as he removed his shoes and let Romano hustle him towards the bathroom for a hot shower.
"Thanks, Romano," the older man sighed. "I… I can't tell you how glad I am that you're here for me…"
Romano's cheeks reddened. Really! As if Romano was hanging around for Spain's sake! Cheeky bastard, making assumptions like that! "D-don't misunderstand! I'm not doing this because I give a shit about you! 'Cause I don't! Not even a little!"
The Italian looped his arm around Spain's waist, but not because he cared how badly Spain was shivering. It was only because he wanted to get Spain in the shower where he belonged. He swallowed hard when Spain's freezing cold nose touched itself against the side of his neck.
"You're not so pathetic that you can't take a shower by yourself, right?" Romano asked.
"I wouldn't mind taking it with you," Spain said with a tired smile.
Romano went beet red. "A-asshole! Pervert! I wasn't offering! God!"
"Please, Roma-" Spain didn't get to finish his appeal because Romano shoved him into the bathroom and slammed the door in his face.
Romano exhaled and slid down to sit on the floor, listening to Spain's dejected sigh, followed by the sound of drenched clothing being stripped off and dropped on the floor. Suddenly he felt hungry again. He went into the kitchen to warm himself up some of the pasta he had left over from supper while he waited for Spain to finish his shower.
When Spain exited the bathroom after his shower, a powerful and delicious smell of rich tomato sauce, garlic and oregano hit him like a brick wall.
His empty stomach growled loudly as his eyes landed on the source, a plate of tortellini, covered in cheese, a slice of homemade garlic bread and a glass of red wine sat unattended on the coffee table. Romano was sitting at the opposite side of the couch, reading a newspaper, deliberately holding it so that it obscured his flushed face from Spain's view. The paper was upside down.
"Did you make this for me, Romano?" Spain asked joyfully.
"Like hell I'd make supper for your lazy ass," Romano scoffed, blushing even more deeply. "A… a squirrel did it, dammit!"
Spain laughed softly, remembering how Romano had, as a child, blamed his wet sheets on a squirrel.
"A squirrel, huh?" Spain said. "If you see that adorable little squirrel again, tell him I owe him a kiss."
"S-sicko!" Romano sputtered, his face positively scarlet. "Is there anything you won't hit on? I swear to god, if I ever find you making out with the sofa or something, I'll—"
"Mm," Spain sighed blissfully as he bit into the tortellini. "This is wonderful, Romano. Your cooking always makes me feel better."
"Hmph," Romano grunted noncommittally, but Spain could see him scooting subtly closer out of the corner of his eye.
Spain slid over, too, closing the rest of the distance between them. Romano stiffened and turned the page of the upside-down paper exaggeratedly, pretending not to notice the older man pressed against his side. When Spain was immersed in enjoying his meal, Romano chanced a glance at him. He looked distinctly less cheerful than usual, his movements were sluggish and when he blinked, he always let his eyes remain closed for just a bit longer than necessary as if even his eyelids were too tired to function at normal speed. Well, Romano didn't feel even the slightest bit sorry for him. He should have known to get his car in for regular tune-ups; if he had, it wouldn't have broken down tonight and he wouldn't have had to walk home in the rain. Spain was still shivering slightly. It was so pathetic that Romano couldn't even bring himself to jerk away when Spain leaned on him.
When Spain finished his meal, he dropped the fork on the plate with a clatter and leaned into Romano, resting his head on Romano's shoulder and hugging his arm. Romano put up a token struggle (because he was too tired to put up a real one, not because he didn't mind Spain holding him), flailing his arms and cursing. To his immense irritation, the only thing he managed to accomplish with his flailing was to accidentally get the blanket that was spread out over the back of the couch hooked on his fingertips and cause it to fall over Spain's still subtly shivering shoulders. Damn it, now Spain was going to misunderstand and think he actually gave a crap about him.
"Please, Roma," Spain whispered against his skin. "Isn't it ok like this, just this once?"
Spain's voice was so worn down and devoid of its usual cheerful lilt that Romano stopped squirming.
"What the hell happened to you?" he asked. "You sound like shit."
"I just had a really bad day," Spain muttered. "I could use a cheer-up charm from my cute little tomato."
"Who the hell's a tomato?" Romano snarled, blushing.
Spain sniffled pathetically and the Italian sighed. "…Well, thanks to a certain dumbass, it's practically morning already and I'm freaking tired."
The reluctant invitation was implied but evident in his tone.
"Thank you," Spain breathed.
Romano's face reddened more deeply as Spain pulled him even closer, wound his arms around his waist, nuzzled his face into the crook of his neck and pulled the blanket around both of them. The Italian freed his arm from Spain's hug and let it fall around his shoulders instead, but only because having it pressed against his side like that was cutting off his circulation. Romano drew a breath and found his nostrils filled with the scent of freshly shampooed hair. He barely tolerated it, and only because he was so damn tired.
"Roma, my sweet Roma," the older man sighed. "You're so nice and warm."
Spain's lips brushed his neck lightly in what might have been a kiss.
"Ch-chigi…" Romano squeaked before he could stop himself. "Chigigi…"
Before he knew it, he was on his back on the couch, and Spain was on top of him, his curly-haired head resting on his chest over his heart. He felt strangely breathless as Spain rubbed his right pec lazily.
"Your heart is beating so fast," Spain commented sleepily. "Are you nervous, Romano?"
"B-bastard," Romano mumbled, much less harshly than he'd been aiming for. He bit his lip to keep from gasping as Spain's fingers grazed his nipple over the top of his shirt. "Keep your… chigii… Keep your damn hands to… to yourself…!"
Spain laughed quietly again and yawned, his warm breath caressing Romano's neck and sending a little shiver down his spine. "This is nice… We should do this more often…"
Romano tried to fold his arms stubbornly, but stupid Spain was in the way, so he just folded them over the top of Spain's back, turning his reddened face away and huffing to show his scorn for the suggestion. Spain couldn't help starting slightly in surprise. Was Romano actually returning his embrace? This was monumental; he couldn't recall a time when Romano had actually been receptive to his affections. Usually, any touching or cuddling was rewarded, sooner or later, with a painful head-butt.
But Romano didn't seem to be planning any such thing at this time. Spain wondered what else he could get away with. He cursed his low energy state. If he wasn't so tired, he'd be able to act much more effectively. Then again, it was quite pleasant to snuggle on the couch with Romano in this half-asleep state. He glanced up at the younger man and found him also fighting to stay awake. It was adorable, really. Spain could feel his heart swelling with affection. He tilted his head upwards so that he could watch Romano's face. When Spain yawned a second time, Romano bowed his head and began to part his lips to tell him that if he was that tired then he should drag his lazy ass to bed already. But before he could utter a sound, Spain lifted his head from Romano's chest and touched a soft, lingering kiss to Romano's mouth.
Romano was so caught off guard that he could do nothing but go scarlet and stiff as a pole. He poked his tongue out slightly, meaning to lick his own lips reflexively, but it ended up swiping across Spain's lip more than his own. One of them moaned into the kiss; it was probably Spain since he was a pervert. Romano could barely think through the strange haze that had descended on his mind when their lips first touched, but he thought it was strange how Spain's moan made his own throat vibrate slightly, as if the sound was coming from him instead. The Italian's fingers came up and slipped into Spain's hair, intending to jerk him back by it, but his muscles were feeling curiously limp all of a sudden and all he could manage was a weak tug. Spain's tongue had snuck into his mouth at some point. When Romano tried to push it out with his own tongue, they just slipped against each other, drawing another moan from Spain.
Finally Spain drew away, resting his head on Romano's chest once more, hugging him in a manner that was almost possessive, though tiredly so. There was a stupid smile on his flushed face. If Romano wasn't so sleepy, he would have head-butted him for pulling that kind of shit. He wanted Spain to know this, so he plonked his forehead down on top of Spain's head, the only place that was within reach of his own head. Spain's heart fluttered wildly as Romano snuggled his blushing face into his hair.
"I had no idea Roma was so good at cheer-up charms," Spain remarked with a love-struck smile. He laughed softly and kissed Romano's throat. "I've already forgotten all the bad things that happened to me today."
"That's because you're an idiot," Romano mumbled, not moving his face from where it was. "You're lucky I'm so tired or I'd kick your ass, you bastard."
So he said. But Spain could feel one of Romano's arms still encircling his shoulders while his free hand remained threaded into Spain's hair. It was funny that regardless of how much Romano snarled and snapped and spouted cruel words, his actions tended to be honest. Perhaps that was the cute point that Spain had been searching for in him. The Spaniard let his eyes flutter closed.
"I love you, Roma," he breathed. "…I love you so much..."
Romano sputtered. He wanted to shout at idiot Spain for saying something so twisted, but he couldn't form a single intelligible word. Why did he feel so strange all of a sudden? There was a weird, warm floating sensation in his chest and his stomach felt as though it was full of butterflies. The only explanation that made sense was that Spain's disgustingly sappy words had actually made him physically ill. Not that Spain noticed; the selfish moron was already snoring away, hugging Romano as if he was his own personal body pillow. Romano yawned. At least Spain had the decency to be warm; perhaps he could be good for something every once in a while. The Italian's eyelids fluttered sleepily.
"I don't… hate you…" The words spilled from Romano's lips before he could stop them. He blushed. Where on earth had that come from? Of course he hated Spain! He always had! He opened his mouth to correct himself. "…I don't hate you… I…h-h… don't hate you… I don't…"
No matter how many times he tried to force out his spiteful words, they refused to come out the way he planned them. Whatever illness Spain had given him must have really been serious. Romano tried to find the energy to kick Spain off of him and throw a tantrum over the fact that Spain had made him sick, but his eyelids were so heavy. Spain shifted in his arms and kissed his neck softly in his sleep, causing that weird, warm, floaty feeling to surge back again, making his limbs feel rather like Jell-o. Romano gave into his fatigue, deciding that kicking Spain's ass would have to wait until first thing tomorrow morning.